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User Topic: "If we weren't M"; "If we didn't have children"
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 11:00 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

I've noticed that many, many BSs on this site often say that their WS's A would have been dealbreakers if they had only been engaged at the time and/or if they didn't have children together.

As someone who didn't yet have children with WS, I find this very interesting. I found myself as desperate to save our M as I imagine I would have been with children.

So where does this confidence come from that it would have been a dealbreaker?

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 11:00 PM, October 6th (Sunday)]


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
heartache101
Member
Member # 26465
Default  Posted: 11:04 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

We can not say for certain we already had our children.
I strongly feel I would of been gone.


There are degrees to which you let people back into your life and degrees to which you let them back into your heart-which, of course, are not the same thing

Posts: 3187 | Registered: Dec 2009 | From: Indiana
Kalliopeia
Member
Member # 35053
Default  Posted: 11:10 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

Often I feel that since I am not married to mone, people give me the simplest answer: you aren't married, why haven't you dumped him, why haven't you ditched him, why is this guy still in your life, why are you still in contact with him?

There is no answer that will satisfy.

I am stretched thin on his actions.. but I have no ring or children. I have a relationship I have been fighting for.

It often feels to me on SI that there is no help for me except "get out of it".

I wonder if the message would be the same if we were married. I see a lot worse things going on in the marriages here than in my relationship. Advice is different, I feel due to not being married.


Posts: 478 | Registered: Mar 2012
emotionalgirl
Member
Member # 40184
Default  Posted: 11:18 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

I often thought that way, but now that my WH has had is EA I look at things differently. I think that if you have invested any amount of time and emotion into a relationship no matter the status or the length it is not as easy to walk away as anyone thinks.

This being said everyone is different. You can only do what you think is right for you.


1st D day: Saturday July 20,2013
2nd D day....when the s**t really hit the fan and the truth came out.Saturday August 3,2013
3rd D day: Friday August 16, 2013...NC sent Friday Aug 30 4th D day NOV 11
Me: BS
Him: WH
Married 25 years....finally in R

Posts: 373 | Registered: Aug 2013
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 11:18 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

You're getting at where my thinking is on this, Kalliopeia.

I feel bad for some people who come here and are in long-term (non-M) relationships or are engaged. Sometimes I do think they run the risk of being dismissed.

I tend to think that those situations can be every bit as difficult as a M affected by infidelity.


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
sad34
Member
Member # 40358
Default  Posted: 11:22 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

I would have left so fast


Bs: me 32 WH: 36
Dday: July 2012
LTA: 4years (ea, pa)
Dd-4. Ds-2
My life is shattered unsure about R

Posts: 139 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: canada
Nature_Girl
Member
Member # 32554
Default  Posted: 11:22 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

Yeah, my IC used to have fun with me when I'd start in on the "If we did/didn't..." and the "If I'd known then..."

It's all bullshit. Well, I do think if I'd known the incredible perverted shit he was into I'd not have married him. But I most certainly did stay with him after marriage but before children, even though I knew he was cheating & a liar. I didn't realize the depths of his perversions until last year, really.


Me = BS (Stay-at-home-mom)
Him = EX-d out (abusive troglodyte NPD SA)
3 tween-aged kids
Together 20 years
D-Day: Memorial Weekend 2011
2013 - I DIVORCED HIM, I'M FREE!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBOJpIwF47Y

Posts: 9536 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: USA
RightTrack
Member
Member # 36976
Default  Posted: 11:39 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

I can say that I would have left but for the children b/c it was while I was in the divorce attorney's office that the full reality of "shared custody" of the kids hit home. " 50/50 Shared custody" scared the living tar of me.

Posts: 616 | Registered: Sep 2012
summerain
Member
Member # 37439
Default  Posted: 11:46 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

For me if WH and I weren't married I would of left because getting divorced in my state is very difficult and both of our quality of life would of been severely complicated, legally and financially.

But that said I'm starting to slowly but surely get happier about staying and thank 'the higher power' we are married. Who knows if he cheats on me in ten years time and I start banging my head on a wall though.


OW1 inadvertently let me know WH loves English breakfast tea. Never ever saw him drink it. And I never will.

Posts: 818 | Registered: Nov 2012 | From: Australia
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 11:57 PM, October 6th (Sunday)

I hate to say it... but I guess I don't really believe it would be that easy to up and leave without M and kids.

I mean, as someone in their 30s... the fact that we don't have kids yet is a reason for me to want R! What are my chances now to find someone, learn to trust them, M them, have children. I think they are pretty slim...


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
crazynot
Member
Member # 24572
Default  Posted: 12:07 AM, October 7th (Monday)

The reason people say this is because of the long, long pain attached to the infidelity, which in my case (my husband cheated on me six months into our 28-year marriage)blighted not only our marriage but my self-image and life. If I had my time again, I'd have called a halt on the marriage at that point. The reason I stayed wasn't just the recent wedding, parents' expectations etc, but because I loved him so completely. I thought he was my one love. My God how wrong I was!!! He left me four years ago and my life is in a much better place. My advice to anyone engaged to a cheater would definitely be 'don't be'!!! People aren't dismissing your pain, they're trying to suggest that a life without it would be better. And as for not finding someone when you're in your 30s... the world is full of people who WON'T cheat. I found one and I'm 52.


Me - 50
Him - 51
DDay 21 March 2009
Divorcing and delighted!

Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it's cracked up to be. That's why people are so cynical about it.


Posts: 860 | Registered: Jun 2009 | From: UK
Bluebird26
Member
Member # 36445
Default  Posted: 12:19 AM, October 7th (Monday)

We can all guess what we might have done if we were in the situation but you never know until you are faced with it. It's like all those statistics you hear about, you aren't really concerned with them until you become one!

I always thought if my ex cheated on me I would have been gone the first time. But I have had numerous ddays. I was 'willing' to do almost anything to keep my marriage together. I was willing to accept treatment I should never have accepted in the first place. I wished I had a stronger self esteem, I wish I had other relationships to compare the one I was in too. So I knew this was not right.

Hindsight is 20/20 as they say. But I wish I could have seen the red flags before I was married as much as I love my children with all my heart if I knew the heartbreak I would have to endure over the years I doubt I would have gone through with the wedding. I am now legally tied to him until my children become adults. I have to share my children with a pathetic 'man' that I would like nothing more then to runaway from forever.

I guess those of us that have been cheated on upon in our marriage/after children are trying to 'help' others to escape a life we have already lived.

IMHO I think if the WS is acting like they are single then let them be single. You deserve better. So did I.

Do you really want to live like this for the rest of your life? Do you really want to be with someone you cannot trust in the same room as another female/male, or constantly checking their phone or checking if their actions equals their words. It's not a life with a equal partner, it's a parent/child relationship.


"Loving someone should not mean losing you. Love empowers you. It shouldn't erase you. - Thelma Davis.

Posts: 1324 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: Australia
LosferWords
Guide
Member # 30369
Default  Posted: 12:28 AM, October 7th (Monday)

It's really easy to say how we would react in certain situations that we are not in. It's much different to actually live these experiences and deal with them first hand. Once you've been betrayed, no matter what situation you are in, the choices that you decide to make are deeply personal. Despite all of the commonalities that many of us share, everyone's situation is so different. It's really not fair to say to another person, "I would do xyz if I were in your situation", because you really don't know.

You really don't 100% know what you're going to do in any given scenario, until you are actually in that scenario.


Posts: 6757 | Registered: Dec 2010
NoAnswers37
Member
Member # 40592
Default  Posted: 3:47 AM, October 7th (Monday)

Phantom - I could not have said it better myself.

The pain of losing a future of children and marriage when you're "that age" is intense. I have often thought about how long I will need for recovery, then meeting a non-cheating compatible partner, then forming a relationship, getting trust back, trying for children, marriage....

The way I feel now I'll be 50 by the time that happens.

I think the main pain those of us who were not married with children have is that our near future has been stolen from us and we didn't do anything to cause it.

But I am so sorry to everyone who is in pain - we need to stick together!


Live without pretending
Love without depending
Listen without defending
Speak without offending

Posts: 122 | Registered: Sep 2013 | From: England
HormonalWoman
Member
Member # 29265
Default  Posted: 4:32 AM, October 7th (Monday)

The same place a couple who have never experienced infidelity get their confidence from when one of them claims they would NEVER give their partner a second chance shit bust i guess

I used to be one of those btw


[This message edited by HormonalWoman at 4:33 AM, October 7th (Monday)]


Together 13 yrs
BW - Me
WH - Him
3 Children
DD 20th June 2010 actual affair was early 2008 for roughly 10 wks.

Posts: 243 | Registered: Aug 2010 | From: UK
heme
Member
Member # 40684
Default  Posted: 7:00 AM, October 7th (Monday)

I don't know it was a 100% Id have left him but I would have been more likely to least for a short period. To me being married and having children makes it a whole lot harder to just take a break. Sometimes I wish his work would send him somewhere for a week or two just so I could get a break and gather my thoughts.


BS: Me (30)
WS: Husband (31)
Married 8 years, together 9
D-Day: Sept 10, 2013
D-Day2: May 31, 2014
Children: 5, ages 7, 5, 3, 1 and due in September

Leaning towards leaving, no one deserves this pain.


Posts: 205 | Registered: Sep 2013
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 7:22 AM, October 7th (Monday)

The pain of losing a future of children and marriage when you're "that age" is intense. I have often thought about how long I will need for recovery, then meeting a non-cheating compatible partner, then forming a relationship, getting trust back, trying for children, marriage....

EXACTLY.

I was with WS for 11 years before he cheated. I can say with 100% confidence that he had never cheated before. His actions came as a total shock to me, our families and all of our friends.

If I couldn't trust the man I was with for over a decade... how can I possibly trust the "next one", should there even be one.

I feel like his A was the end of my chance at my own children. Sure, I can adopt, anything can happen, etc.

But I envy those of you who were able to share having a child with the man you loved. That you have your children to focus on and, hopefully, keep you grounded and feeling loved.

From the position of a 30-something who gave over their entire 20s helping a man establish a career-- and held off on children for the sake of that career-- it feels like a double-whammy. I've lost my partner. I've forfeited my future. Now some OW, who already has a child!, and is reaping the benefits of all of the time and energy I put into helping to build him up all of these years.

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 7:23 AM, October 7th (Monday)]


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
anewday78
Member
Member # 39357
Default  Posted: 7:41 AM, October 7th (Monday)

Ugh, I have to admit, I'm guilty of giving this type of advice and I can understand we it frustrates you:
Often I feel that since I am not married to mone, people give me the simplest answer: you aren't married, why haven't you dumped him, why haven't you ditched him, why is this guy still in your life, why are you still in contact with him?
I think people are so quick to jump on that line of reasoning because marriage and children create such challenging ties that bind you to another person so much more than if all you have to do is give 30 days notice on an apartment lease and walk away. We sometimes forget that just because there's no legal document, couples can still build lives together that are deeply rooted, making it difficult to just up and leave. I, for one, want to apologize to anybody who I' might've rashly dismissed with this type of response. I'll definitely be more conscious about it in the future.

Posts: 350 | Registered: May 2013
cayc
Member
Member # 21964
Default  Posted: 7:44 AM, October 7th (Monday)

I spent 6 years going in circles firstly by rugsweeping and then by trying for R for the very reason you mention PL. I wanted children, I wanted the plans we had, I wanted my investment to pay off. I married when I was 35 and the first time D was truly raised I was 40. OMG 40, life was over.

And because of that mindset, I wasted 6 years. Now on the other side at 46, how much easier it would have been to start over at 40 instead of 46.

That's why I give the newly married, no kids members of SI the GO, GO NOW advice. It isn't because I think there are less ties to the M to be empathetic towards (b/c there aren't, betrayal is betrayal, lies are lies, being blindsided is being blindsided). It's because in the midst of the pain, it's too easy to think you need to throw good money after bad when in fact you don't.

But for the record, I pretty much tell everyone to D. I no longer believe in forgiveness. Looking back, I don't think I would have had R in me. I don't think adultery is a forgivable thing. (My apologies to all those in successful R, I understand why you might choose it, and for the record you are stronger, better people than me). I don't think actions taken with malice aforethought are forgivable. So that's why I rarely post in JFO, my advice is generally too harsh. I wait until people are in general and the facts of the relationship are clearer.

So that's why you perceive a bias, D is the more common outcome of an A than a successful R, those of us on the otherside of D all see we wasted too much time getting to D and that's our regret that we're sharing.

Mostly though, I've read your threads PL. People are enraged on your behalf. That's why you've gotten the slam the door, don't look back advice. When people reference that you don't have ties like children, they are referencing that the D process is easier - not that the emotional component is - and that's the genesis of the "easy" reference.


"The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The chicken is involved, the pig is committed." -Martina Navratilova
"The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

Posts: 3059 | Registered: Dec 2008 | From: Mexico
fight4respect
New Member
Member # 40595
Default  Posted: 8:14 AM, October 7th (Monday)

This is probably just a reflection of my limits but I too struggle to believe in R (with all respect to the many people here who hold different views). I do not have it in me to give cheaters a second chance and I tend to think that people capable of this type of behaviour only change at great cost and effort, if they change at all. So I tend to echo the views of those who say 'run' but I fully agree that pain is pain. I was not married and have no children and yet the pain of betrayal and the shock of giving up on the future I thought I had were agony.


* I used to listen to people and trust they would act upon their word. Now I listen to people, and observe if they will act upon their word *

Posts: 10 | Registered: Sep 2013
lost_in_toronto
Member
Member # 25395
Default  Posted: 8:26 AM, October 7th (Monday)

I was 35 when my partner of nine years cheated on me. We had lived together for years, owned our home, had so many plans for our future. Those plans, by the way, did not include marriage or children.

I find it really hard when people suggest that because we weren't married I should have left. Being married or not would not have changed my level commitment to the relationship. He was my life partner.

We had also spent nine really wonderful years together, encompassing my late twenties and early thirties. I didn't want to leave behind that history, I didn't want to leave behind all we had worked for together. Most importantly, I really really loved him.

About a year after the A I got pregnant, and our daughter is two years old. I will do everything in my power to make sure she grows up in an intact family. I don't know what I would do if he cheated on me again, though - I think I would leave. Once was enough. But now that we have a daughter? The thought of losing her full time, the change in her quality of life, not having us both to put her to bed at night...the reality is, I just don't know what I would do if it happened.

You never know until you're sitting in it, right?

All that being said, I have to admit I read stories of people who have been together a year or two years and their partner is already cheating on them, and I want to yell RUN! as loud as anyone. I try hard to remember that when someone JFO they need support in the moment, not necessarily advice about the future. It's tough though; through experience reading here, I do think that people who cheat two months into a relationship are probably less likely to reform their cheating ways.

It's funny, I do believe in R and forgiveness, but I also find myself often nodding my head in agreement with cayc.

Mostly though, I've read your threads PL. People are enraged on your behalf. That's why you've gotten the slam the door, don't look back advice. When people reference that you don't have ties like children, they are referencing that the D process is easier - not that the emotional component is - and that's the genesis of the "easy" reference.

Like this. Totally agree.

[This message edited by lost_in_toronto at 8:32 AM, October 7th (Monday)]


Me: BS/39
Him: WS/37
DDay: August 23, 2009
Together 14 years.
Reconciled.

Posts: 1657 | Registered: Sep 2009 | From: not toronto anymore
honesttoafault
Member
Member # 27105
Default  Posted: 9:13 AM, October 7th (Monday)

My WH cheated on me when we were engaged. He apologized gave me all kinds of excuses told me that if we were really married, he would never cheat, blah blah blah.

I loved him so very much and we'd been together for 4 years that I believed him.

Well, he continued to cheat after the M, married someone overseas and had 3 OC's with her.

It is very, very difficult to break off a relationship if you love them very much. But R is extremely hard. I feel if they are cheating with you in the beginning when the "in love" feelings should be strong, then what will happen later?

It is hard to R, but harder to D when there are kids involved.

I believe the advice is sound if you are not M and have no kids to run. It does not mean that the pain is any less.

Perhaps the mods should have a thread in the I Can Relate area for people who are not married? The pain is just as strong as those who are married.


Posts: 1939 | Registered: Jan 2010
catlover50
Member
Member # 37154
Default  Posted: 9:28 AM, October 7th (Monday)

Yeah I am another that has the unfortunate experience of knowing what I would do if we weren't married or had children and he cheated on me.

Because that also happened. We were living together at the time.

I let him TT me and went on to marry him.

Although I don't regret marrying him, I have told him that I would certainly give our daughter the advice in a similar situation not to marry. I actually said that I considered it a "mistake" to marry him, knowing what I now know. He had way more issues than I was aware of, and I was too young and naïve to know what I was getting myself in for. I thought being married would change him. I made all sorts of excuses. Sigh.

So I certainly don't judge people in those situations, but can also see counseling people to strongly consider their options.



Dday -9/24/2012
Reconciling

Posts: 1728 | Registered: Oct 2012 | From: northeast
ReunitePangea
Member
Member # 37529
Default  Posted: 9:28 AM, October 7th (Monday)

Think of it like a long walk/hike that you went out on. After awhile you start to get tired and have to decide if it is going to be easier to continue on the journey to the end point or to turn around and go back.

When you have kids, married for years, etc. you have a lot invested in the journey. Turning around and going back may be a longer walk/hike than continuing on. If you don't have kids and are not married perhaps the shorter route is to turn around. Each person needs to evaluate their own situation but I think the above is why sometimes those that are not far on the journey are given advise to run.

My WW cheated on me when we were first dating. If I found out then rather than 14 years later I think I would have run.


BS - Me 38
WS - Wife 39
D-Day - Oct 12
Married 10 years
OM1 - 12-year LTA
OM2 - 9 month A turned into open relationship with couple for another 1 1/2 years

Posts: 472 | Registered: Nov 2012
NoAnswers37
Member
Member # 40592
Default  Posted: 9:42 AM, October 7th (Monday)

All that being said, I have to admit I read stories of people who have been together a year or two years and their partner is already cheating on them, and I want to yell RUN! as loud as anyone. I try hard to remember that when someone JFO they need support in the moment, not necessarily advice about the future

I'm afraid I fall under that category and at times feel a bit pathetic that I am battling with these emotions when I wasn't even with him that long. No time really compared to others.

But, we never know what other awful things some members have over come in the past, which could all add to the immense pain of the betrayal. It was a true miracle that I trusted and loved a man as much as I did. I am not naive and do not fall in love easily, but I did! And then that was taken away, so the pain is real. Really real.

In time I will be glad that I found out now before I married him and had children (I know what it is like to be a child in that situation so am already fiercely protective over my future children... if I am blessed enough to have any) but for now I just need a bit of support to get through the first through months. Which is why I turned to SI.

It is also incredibly hard watching what feels like everyone in your age bracket (and younger!) settling down and marrying. It has nothing to do with jealousy at all, but you do get a sense of feeling left behind, which adds to the pain.

I have been so grateful for the support I have received so far, but respect that my situation may seem trivial to some.

[This message edited by NoAnswers37 at 9:56 AM, October 7th (Monday)]


Live without pretending
Love without depending
Listen without defending
Speak without offending

Posts: 122 | Registered: Sep 2013 | From: England
Kierst13
Member
Member # 39197
Default  Posted: 9:43 AM, October 7th (Monday)

I have some thoughts on this. I often do not respond to threads where people have not been together very long, i.e. 5 or more years. I keep my mouth closed because my first thought is "It hasn't been very long and they are already cheating, get out before you invest more of yourself and your time into that mess of a person". I earnestly believe whether married or in a relationship, if it has been a short time, cut your losses. I keep my trap shut most of the time because I know it will fall on deaf ears.

**This next part will ruffle some feathers, but this is in general and is not aimed at any one person, so here goes. Consider yourself warned **

When I hear people say if it weren't for the kids they would have left. I think, then you should leave. If you are not or cannot fully and completely R, you do your kids more harm than good by staying. You may think you can have the appearance of a happy and healthy marital relationship, but kids are intuitive, probably more intuitive than adults.

They can sense tension, they can see the subtle differences between the way mom and dad act towards one another. They hear more than we give them credit for. They are not deaf and they can play their video games or watch TV in the other room and still hear what is being said. They internalize it and they learn how to be treated by a spouse and how to treat their future spouse by watching and mirroring US.

There is no pretending to be happy with your spouse where kids are concerned. They know when things are even slightly different. They see it, they hear it and they learn how to be people from it.

Staying for the kids, without full and honest R from both WS and BS, does more harm than good. Period.

/off my soapbox


Story in my profile
He lied, I gave the gift of R
He became the model remorseful WS...all while lying and seeing her
Am I done? Yes I am!

Posts: 347 | Registered: May 2013
OldCow18
Member
Member # 39670
Default  Posted: 9:46 AM, October 7th (Monday)

I don't know where I'd be if we didn't have kids and he did this, I truly can't know what I'd do, but I do know that in my situation right now, my kids are the driving force in trying to R even though I want to give up. If this ends badly I have to be able to look into their eyes and tell them that I did everything I could to save the marriage.

ETA - Just read Kierst's response, the issue is that early on you just can't know how it will go, R is such a long painful roller coaster of a process, I have to try for my kids, if it doesn't work than I have to leave for myself.

[This message edited by OldCow18 at 9:49 AM, October 7th (Monday)]


Me, BW forty something, DD & DS,
Married to WH (49) 11 years, together 16
D-Day 6.8.13

Posts: 620 | Registered: Jun 2013
debbysbaby
Member
Member # 32962
Default  Posted: 9:52 AM, October 7th (Monday)

I think if I were to go back to the beginning when the first cheating occurred before we had children, but I were to go back knowing everything I know now, then yes, I definitely would have left in a heartbeat. And that said, I don't mean knowing how he would treat me but I mean knowing the reality of how these things usually wind up and having the view I now have that's not so rose-colored concerning people and relationships and Fidelity. The problem is, we don't come with the hindsight that would be so helpful. I'm a far better judge of character and I'm far better able to spot red flags now than I was when I met and got engaged to my expoopsmear. The person i am today would never have fallen for the person he was or is.


-betrayed almost my whole almost 15 yr marriage
-divorced since 2004

Posts: 860 | Registered: Aug 2011
Kierst13
Member
Member # 39197
Default  Posted: 10:01 AM, October 7th (Monday)

ETA - Just read Kierst's response, the issue is that early on you just can't know how it will go, R is such a long painful roller coaster of a process, I have to try for my kids, if it doesn't work than I have to leave for myself.

I understand that. I understand thinking "we have kids, I cannot simply bail", but when one or both spouses don't jump into R with both feet, do not use the kids as a reason to stay. Furthermore, realize if that is the case using them as a reason to stay is backwards thinking at that point, they should be the reason to leave, if BOTH parents are not fully committed.

I suppose looking back at my situation I think it healthier for all parties involved (especially the kids) if the BS would say to the WS "Either get your ass fully and totally in R, or get our of my house, I need to protect our children."

I tend to think the BS do way too much hand holding and coddling in R. A lot of times when I look at couples trying to R it's the tail wagging the dag.


Story in my profile
He lied, I gave the gift of R
He became the model remorseful WS...all while lying and seeing her
Am I done? Yes I am!

Posts: 347 | Registered: May 2013
hathnofury
Member
Member # 32550
Default  Posted: 10:08 AM, October 7th (Monday)

So many good points on this thread.

I don't think it is a general SI member's intention to devalue non-marrieds or married without kids relationships. Or shorter vs. longer ones.

The harsh truth is it is much more difficult to leave when you are married. The D process takes time and money, and often brings out the worst in people. You are often shafted for a lot of liability that isn't your fault.

When kids are involved, you have all that double. You often are forced to leave you kids with someone you don't trust, who destroys them emotionally and otherwise. The liabilities you incur on their behalf are often ongoing. Worst of all, you can never completely rid them out of your life.

So I believe the general intent of SI members is to avoid these scenarios when you have a choice. Not that your pain is less valid, your relationship less worth saving, or you are too young/ignorant to know otherwise. And the cold hard truth is taking this chance with a known cheater ups the risk, even if they are completely remorseful from the start and less so if not.

We mean no disrespect. Often we are just yelling at our past selves.


BS 43, SAWH 38. M 15years, together 17. Body count in the triple digits. Both in recovery, trying to R.
Three kids under age 11.

Posts: 1469 | Registered: Jun 2011
Kierst13
Member
Member # 39197
Default  Posted: 10:10 AM, October 7th (Monday)

We mean no disrespect. Often we are just yelling at our past selves.

Isn't that the God's honest truth!


Story in my profile
He lied, I gave the gift of R
He became the model remorseful WS...all while lying and seeing her
Am I done? Yes I am!

Posts: 347 | Registered: May 2013
SisterMilkshake
Member
Member # 30024
Default  Posted: 10:14 AM, October 7th (Monday)

I gave FWH a "chance" because we had still had a young teen in our home. MisterSister had one chance to prove that he was all in and that he was indeed willing to do "whatever it takes to save our marriage" < his words.

To be honest, I can't say I would have left even if we didn't have a child still in the home. We have a long history. (over 30 years) A lot of it very good and happy. But, I do know, if fWH wasn't remorseful, if he expected me to "just get over it" and hadn't accepted full responsibility for the damage he had done, I would leave. I am done accepting less than I deserve.

I do know that when I was single and dating if I had even a whiff that one of my boyfriends was cheating, it was "buh-bye". I never let them explain, I didn't need "proof", I would go immediate NC with them. If you don't want me, and just me, fine, I had a lot of pride and I don't share.

For the most part, I am not one to say "Run!" to anyone except in extreme circumstances. I want everyone's marriage/relationship to heal and work. For some gosh darn reason I still believe in "happily ever after".


BW (me) 50ish FWH 50ish
Married 34 years, 3 children
d-day 3/10 LTA (4 yrs./fucking & flirting)

"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak!" ~ Homer Simpson


Posts: 9543 | Registered: Nov 2010 | From: The Great White North USA
Dreamland
Member
Member # 40488
Default  Posted: 2:59 PM, October 7th (Monday)

Sister milkshake said it well.

Any of my BF even hint or cheated I dumped there ass. If you can't be faithful I don't want you. But after almost 20 years together and a child I am more invested in the relationship. You see after all the years and history he behaved in a way outside of his moral compass. Had he cheated before children I would have dumped his ass. Because I would not want to expose my children to man who had no respect for me. Now I have to think do I break up our family.. She still depends on him even if she hates him for what he did..
And I consider it worse that cheated on the mother of his children. But I don't know that I can afford private schools and college on my own. Because I know too many dads that are deadbeats once the wife divorces them. So yes I mainly stay for my child and this is because he is remorseful and try's everyday to make things better. Otherwise I would not succumb to his indignation.
If you have no marriage and no children and he disrespects you. I think it's better to get your self a man that can respect you. You are still young. Because that is what I think about. Did I waste my time with this shmuck. 20 years. Was there someone else that would have treated me with respect and not cheated?? Hard to say but he better prove to me everyday that he is worth me staying. Otherwise he knows I'm gone.


Me-BS 50 Him-WH 47, DD17
Together since 1993, Married 19 yrs
DDay 3/12,4/12,7/12 EA-PA OW - 25 single husband chasing bastard whore

Posts: 515 | Registered: Aug 2013
hopefullromantic
Member
Member # 16652
Default  Posted: 3:48 PM, October 7th (Monday)

My kids were already grown, so a split family was not nearly as much of a problem, but our history was. We'd had many, many, loving, happy and faithful years compared to the two that he was cheating. However, if the relationship was fairly new and untested except for the A then splitting up would be a rational decision to make before things got further complicated with mortgages and children.

Doubt that's what I would have done tho, had we not been married yet. Perhaps new love is the blindest. Which is why it is important to have people who care about you in your life, whose opinions you respect, who will try and help you see when someone is bad for you, because it is often too hard for us to see for ourselves. That's what the people here try to do for each other. We can have a more objective view of someone else's circumstances, even if not always our own. Isn't that one of the reasons we come here? To get perspective?


It's not really a fairy tale 'till the witch is deposed and a few dragons are slain

Posts: 1755 | Registered: Oct 2007
blindsidedbyhim
Member
Member # 30794
Default  Posted: 3:56 PM, October 7th (Monday)

FELY compelled to chime in...
wh cheated when we were just dating but we were 5 years into the relationship and I was already 29 I forgave too quickly and he simply took his cheating underground for many more years. Our deal broke when he was caught cheating again with the same ow 10 years layer when I was 41.

I would run for the hills now if I was only dating him. I have 2 kids, I stayed another 3 years tried to R....my feelings just never came back the was they need to for me to love him without resentment. We are headed for D

It is a VERY risky thing to R when not married. For me, it was catastrophic.

I would have had plenty of time to find someone else. I realize that now.....LIFE is long.


ME 44
DS-10 and DD-11
DDay 9/19/10
Separated 6/1/13
Married 10 yrs, together 18

"Stop wearing your wishbone where your backbone ought to be."
— Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love)

The only thing more unthinkable than leaving was


Posts: 219 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: east coast
mrs. duped
Member
Member # 28668
Default  Posted: 4:03 PM, October 7th (Monday)

From the position of a 30-something who gave over their entire 20s helping a man establish a career-- and held off on children for the sake of that career-- it feels like a double-whammy. I've lost my partner. I've forfeited my future. Now some OW, who already has a child!, and is reaping the benefits of all of the time and energy I put into helping to build him up all of these years.

Phantom limb, I could have said this, word for word on my dday. The only difference being ow in my case was single with no kids but otherwise that was EXACTLY how I felt. I helped him thru med school, gave up a phd for him, invested all these years in him and some slut gets to move in, take away my future children along with all that I invested in his career!

As you know, I chose to try to R with a semi remorseful, passive aggressive rugsweeper. While I am grateful to now have my dd, I don't know if I made the right decision. I got to have the "life" I had planned, but at what price?


me: BW-36
him: WH-34
married 8 years; together 13 years
one dd=2 years old
3 month EA turned PA with coworker
D-day: April 19 2010.
Trying to R

Posts: 141 | Registered: Jun 2010 | From: michigan
Bigger
Member
Member # 8354
Default  Posted: 4:29 PM, October 7th (Monday)

I left my fiancé just five weeks before our big white wedding.
I walked in on her having sex with OM and maybe twenty minutes later left our apartment never to enter it again.

When I have shared the story I sometimes get “well – you weren’t married” or “you didn’t have kids” as if that made it emotionally so much easier. Although I could probably concur with that sentiment regarding children then the formal definition of our relationship had NOTHING to do with the emotional cost of my decision.
We had about 6 years history; 2 as friends, 4 as a couple and co-habiting the last 2. We were madly in love and I was totally 100% happy with our decision to share each other’s lives together.

But I also knew that if she was capable of doing this to me now, in the early days when we should have been so into each other and so committed… Then she was incapable of being the woman I wanted. So I left. I ended it.

Early marriage or not-married simply make the technicality of separating easier. Emotionally it’s just as tough as after several years of marriage.
Children add a different and intense angle into the equation. Once you have kids it’s no longer only what’s best for you. IMHO it’s better to be from a broken home than live in one, but I feel a couple with kids should give reconciliation a good chance.
But if no kids, short marriage… I would definitely walk.


"If, therefore, any be unhappy, let him remember that he is unhappy by reason of himself alone." Epictetus

Posts: 5519 | Registered: Sep 2005
Edie
Member
Member # 26133
Default  Posted: 4:51 PM, October 7th (Monday)

It often feels to me on SI that there is no help for me except "get out of it"

This is truly exasperating, Kallipoea, given the huge amount of very good advice and support you have been given, and which you continue to ignore (as is your right, however to not even acknowledge it...)


Maybe a long walk in the Hindu Kush would do it?
BW (me) 52
FWS 55
Together 29 years; 2 DDs 15 & 12
Dday Dec 08 (confessed) Feb 09 16 other OW confessed. OW17 tried her unedifying hardest until Aug 09. R'd.

Posts: 5059 | Registered: Nov 2009 | From: UK
HurtButHopeful?
Member
Member # 25144
Default  Posted: 6:24 PM, October 7th (Monday)

When I hear people say if it weren't for the kids they would have left. I think, then you should leave. If you are not or cannot fully and completely R, you do your kids more harm than good by staying. You may think you can have the appearance of a happy and healthy marital relationship, but kids are intuitive, probably more intuitive than adults.

They can sense tension, they can see the subtle differences between the way mom and dad act towards one another.

Kierst13, I get what you are saying. I am one of those who sometimes think I am staying because of the children. In some ways R is harder than D. In other ways D is harder than R when you have children.

I am D from my first H, and we had no children. I have never seen or heard from him since the D.

In contrast, Mr. HBH and I have 4 beautiful children together, and because of that Mr. HBH will be in my life forever, whether we are M or D.

When I have thought I want to D, I start reading the divorce and separation thread here on SI. Upon reading other people's nightmarish lives fleshing out 50/50 custody, trying to R looks less painful for everyone involved. If H were still active in an A, abusive, or if there were screaming matches in the home, D might be the less destructive choice. In our case, R is the restorative approach.

Many of us do L our WS, we just have our own emotional baggage (A related trauma) that we sometimes believe would be more quickly diminishsed if we weren't still M to WS. In reality, since there is the connection with WS because of children, there wouldn't be a clean cut, and the pain would continue.
The better choice for me is to slowly whittle away at my own A related baggage while working on R.

Sorry if this was confusing.


Reconciliation means that we both are authentic and vulnerable. I still have my H, and he's a better man than ever!

Posts: 1716 | Registered: Aug 2009
gonnabe2016
Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 6:34 PM, October 7th (Monday)

Popping in real quick to say this to Kalli (haven't gotten past her response yet):
I wonder if the message would be the same if we were married. I see a lot worse things going on in the marriages here than in my relationship. Advice is different, I feel due to not being married

Kalli, from me personally: I don't care if your story was that you had been married for 45 years and had 15 children. My advice to you would still be the same.......


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7944 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
Lonelygirl10
Member
Member # 39850
Default  Posted: 7:46 PM, October 7th (Monday)

Often I feel that since I am not married to mone, people give me the simplest answer: you aren't married, why haven't you dumped him, why haven't you ditched him, why is this guy still in your life, why are you still in contact with him?

I feel this way too. And it's an impossible question to answer. I know rationally that there's nothing tying me to him, and that it would be a lot easier to leave him than all the people on here who are married and have children.

But emotionally, I don't want to leave him. I put all my hopes and dreams into this man, and it's not as simple as just walking away.

I used to always say that I would walk away if I was ever cheated on, and that didn't happen. I think it's really hard for anyone to know how they would really respond in a situation until they're in that situation. But, that's just my opinion.

Sometimes I feel like I shouldn't be complaining as much or that my pain isn't as significant since I've only been with him for two years. I can't imagine what the people on here feel who have been married for 20+ years. If I'm feeling this broken, I don't see how the rest of you can get out of bed every day.

But, my feelings are real. I know I'm not married, but it still hurts every single day.

I've gotten the response a lot that I'm only 29 years old, and I should walk away since I'm so young. But I don't see it that way. I see it as I'm almost in my 30's. I invested two years of my life with this man, and I wanted marriage and kids with him. If I leave him now, there's a 50% (or more) that the next guy I meet will also cheat on me. So, to me, it's worth taking the time to figure out if this man can change and be a better partner. If he can't change, I won't spend my whole life with him. But if he can change, that's worth a few bad months to me.

ETA: Also, wanted to add that there are also so, so, so many people on SI who have been so supportive of my situation, even though I'm not married. I've gotten some great advice on here, and it's been my main system of support during all this.

[This message edited by Lonelygirl10 at 7:55 PM, October 7th (Monday)]


29 Bgf
Dday: April 2013
Relationship ended: January 2014

Posts: 1126 | Registered: Jul 2013
AppleBlossom
Member
Member # 38541
Default  Posted: 7:53 PM, October 7th (Monday)

I left my previous husband, with whom I had three children for reasons that were not attached to infidelity.

When I found out my FWF was unfaithful to me, we had no children together (and will not due to our age) and were not engaged nor living together, yet I chose to stay with him.

My desire to stay with my FWF is so much stronger than my urge was to stay with my ex-husband. This is because I truly love my FWF in a way that is absolutely authentic and based on very real reasons.

My dealbreakers are different - if he had been unfaithful to me by being in an EMR rather than seeing prostitutes, it would be over. If he had not attended immediately to his issues around SA as a child then it would be over.

My choices are informed by my own experiences as a child and my FOO. My parents were very, very unhappy and I believe that my mother was unfaithful to my father. However, they stayed "for the children" and consequently we grew up watching a truly dysfunctional and abusive relationship.

I guess I am saying that it is not always so simple and there are so many personal and individual factors at play. Knowing that my FWF was unfaithful to his ex-wife, I swore if he did it to me, it would be over.

And yet, here I am.


Posts: 154 | Registered: Feb 2013 | From: Australia
gonnabe2016
Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 7:58 PM, October 7th (Monday)

I've never said that if stbx had cheated pre-M or pre-kids that it would have been a dealbreaker for me. I can't know what I would have done because that's not how it happened for me.

I don't believe that people are meaning to be dismissive of anyone's feelings/pain when voicing the *run* sentiment to BS' that aren't married or have no children. It's just that the ones who say that to the OP's are (usually) married and/or have children -- and hindsight is 20/20. Navigating the logistics of a divorce is a stress-filled nightmare. And then having kids involved in the whole mess makes it 1,000,000,000 times worse. My thought is -- why put yourself through that if you don't have to and can *get away* before going through that emotional damage?

If I tell someone to cut contact and run, it is because I've read the profile, read (and/or followed) the story -- and I see a Wayward partner that is continuing to be a Wayward. A Wayward that is not remorseful. A Wayward who is not putting forth the effort to become a *safe* partner. My vote to stay/go is not based on a poster's marital status.

And this is magical thinking on your part:

But I envy those of you who were able to share having a child with the man you loved. That you have your children to focus on and, hopefully, keep you grounded and feeling loved

You can envy the people who you know that have children and stable marriages.
But dealing with children while going through being betrayed (and perhaps divorce) is most definitely not an enviable position to be in. Your statement reminds me of the 14 year old girls that get pregnant on purpose so that they will have someone to *love* them. <--That is NOT the reality of kids. Kids can be needy and self-centered little suckers who just want/need, want/need, want/need constantly. Yes, they *give back* at moments, but it's not a child's job to make the parent feel loved. It is the parent's job to make their children feel loved -- and that is really hard to do when the parent's are dealing with the shitstorm created by cheating and the possible destruction of the family unit due to divorce.

You've been down in the D/S section. There is thread after thread that describes the horrific effects on the children involved in this betrayal crap. It is heart-breaking to read and NO child deserves to go through it. Watching your child have to deal with it just flat-out sucks and it has been one of the worst experiences of my life. So, again. If I see someone whose Wayward is being a remorseless ass and there aren't any children involved, I will say a little prayer of thanks.

Although it may not feel like it to you, you are still young and you have many glorious years ahead of you. You just have to begin looking forward and stop looking back. Trusting again will be difficult, but not impossible. And look at the lesson you learned -- if a guy tells you that he broke off an engagement and just *vapored* on his ex, you'll KNOW to dig into that a little bit deeper.

Grieve for what you've *lost* -- your pain is very real. And don't count out finding a wonderful man and children, if that is what you desire. Just look at Halle Berry. She just had a baby last week -- she's 47.


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7944 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
RippedSoul
Member
Member # 40055
Default  Posted: 8:26 PM, October 7th (Monday)

For each of us, the specifics are different, but for most of us, the generalities are the same. We LOVE our waywards (or did before they wounded us so deeply); we're in a relationship because they are special to us; we are committed; we are hopeful; we are optimistic.

My specifics are that my WH, a sex addict, had been physically faithful to me for 21 years of marriage and 4 children. I feel like, as many issues as he has, he loves me, he loves our children, and he--and our marriage--are worth trying to save. Had he cheated soon into our marriage, I'd be just as devastated (perhaps more so because the love is different--more giddy--then), but my outlook would be different.

My belief is that people who cheat in relationships--even if it's just in middle school--are "practicing." They're setting up patterns and they're developing lifelong habits. Practice makes permanent, unfortunately. When it's a 45-year-old who's unfaithful for the first time, the term "cheat" doesn't seem to be the whole person. At least that's what I tell myself.

Quite honestly, every time I ask for advice on this site, I actually appreciate it more if there are different opinions. It gives me more to wrap my head around and it makes my decision seem more authentic, more researched, when I make it. I need someone to play devil's advocate.

Hopefully, others feel the same way I do. When I'm offering advice, I'm offering the best advice--based on my experience--that I possibly can. You don't have to accept it. But you should hear it. And I'm duty-bound to share it as gently as I can. It could be illuminating even if--and maybe most especially if--it's not what you want to hear. KWIM?

As for staying because of the children, well, I think I'd have given up on my beloved but messed up addict if it weren't for them. I honestly don't know if he's capable of changing. I DO know that he's trying, though. As long as our home is harmonious, as long as he can keep his act together in front of them, as long as he can be kind to me (even if he's still cheating--can you tell there's still no trust?) and show me affection, then I'll stay until my youngest leaves for college. At that point, if he hasn't made giant strides toward recovery, then I'll leave, too. My kids deserve a father as long as our home is positive; but I deserve someone who loves me enough to change.

That's what I mean by specifics vs generalities. It just "depends." There is no "one size fits all" answer when it comes to cheating. There are trends. There are probabilities. But there are no definites that account for all the variables that make up who we are and how dynamic our relationships are.


BW: 49; SLAWH: 46; M: 23 yrs
DD#1--11/30/12 (prostitute #1)
DD#2--1/29/13 (AP, escorts #1 & #2)
DD#3--9/13 (trolling MILF site)
DD#4--10/8/13 (EA with AP cont'd)
DD: 20; DD: 18; DS: 16; DS: 14
PS: I've NEVER NOT edited my posts

Posts: 446 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: California
Gemini71
Member
Member # 40115
Default  Posted: 8:31 PM, October 7th (Monday)

Ah yes, there is a bit of a 'stay for the kids' bias in our culture, and it can be reflected here on SI. I do NOT endorse staying for the kids.

If you see the horror stories on the S/D thread, most of them were in horrible M to begin with. No one makes this decision lightly. If you asked on the S/D thread, I bet most of us would say that whatever emotional trauma our kids are experiencing, it is nothing to what they would go through with a false R or an antagonistic M.

In my case, we had an amicable M, and are working to keep our D amicable too. Even so, I was surprised at how little we missed STBXH when he left. If fact, the kids are getting along much better with each other, and in school. Even so, there is pain.

I know that your pain is just as bad as any M BS with kids. I went through a similar betrayal with an XB when I was younger. If anything, it hurt worse because I didn't have the kids to brighten my life like I do now. I also didn't have the coping skills and wisdom (a.k.a. knowing it WILL get better) that I do now.

Lastly, please know that your life is NOT over. Three good friends of mine have just had their first children in their early 40s. Only one had to use IVF (she would have needed IVF at 20 too). Another went through a difficult D in her early 30s and thought her life was over, it was not. She now has 2 DSs, 2D Step-Ss, and a D Step-Grand-D as well. You never know what the future holds, so do not give up!


Edited to correct stupid typos.

Two steps forward and one step backwards, is still progress.


Posts: 1657 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: Illinois, USA
suposd2btheonly1
Member
Member # 40753
Default  Posted: 9:00 PM, October 7th (Monday)

Im not sure if its really confidence. I always ALWAYS said that if WH EVER cheated that NO MATTER WHAT, kids or not I would leave. Ive told him that before just in conversations about cheaters, before he was a cheater, and we had kids at those times.

I think I was sure at the time I said that that it was what I would do. Now that I'm in that situation I'm singing a different tune. I want to make it past this and make it work.

I think that you can say things, and at the time mean them, but when you are really faced with the issue your feelings are more real.


Me: BW 31
Him: WH 30
OW: 22yo whore who is still planning her wedding
Married 3yrs, together 5
4 kids, all boys 14, 11, 4 and 8mos...I hope like hell they don't hurt someone the way he hurt their mama
Dday: August 9, 2013
S, until his head

Posts: 206 | Registered: Sep 2013 | From: Oklahoma
RedRose
Member
Member # 39584
Default  Posted: 9:11 PM, October 7th (Monday)

I can't say for certain that it would have been a dealbreaker before we had kids, but I think that it would have been.

Why? Because I don't deserve to be treated the way he treated me over the last two and a half years. But, as a mother, I want to do everything possible to keep my kids feeling happy, healthy, and safe. I can't just do what is best for myself any more, but gave to do what is best for them first.


BW-35
WH - 35
2.5 year LTA

Posts: 159 | Registered: Jun 2013
musiclovingmom
Member
Member # 38207
Default  Posted: 9:12 PM, October 7th (Monday)

I came from a divided home. My mother's 3rd husband has been her longest. My father was not involved in my life and it was miserable. My sister's father was involved in her life and the back and forth was miserable. I vowed I would do everything possible to keep my children from having to live either way. Then, I had my daughter. My first marriage ended in divorce. Not because he was unfaithful, but because he had anger issues and refused to admit it or do anything to work on it. I didn't want my daughter to grow up thinking that marriage was about two people who fought all the time. My current H cheated before we were married. We had only been together 2 years. We did have a child. I could have cut and run no problem. Had more than one offer from people to help me and the baby in any way possible. I knew I could handle the custody issues. But, I loved him deeply and he showed instant remorse. Maybe it would have been different if he hadn't stopped everything before I found out. Probably not. Truth is, I somehow knew from day one that this was a series of bad choices, but they didn't define who he was. Though we had only been together for 2 years, we'd known each other almost 20. The pain he felt was palpable. I'll never forget exactly how he looked when I found out. When I first posted my story almost 6 months post-dday, the advice I got was 'run' and 'he's a SA'. I didn't and he isn't. Almost 14 months now and our home is happier than ever.

Posts: 1057 | Registered: Jan 2013
dbellanon
Member
Member # 39236
Default  Posted: 10:03 PM, October 7th (Monday)

Here's what I remember.

On DDay, I discovered the affair in the morning. She came home late (2:00 AM) at night, at which point I confronted her.

In that intervening time, I remember the feeling of being horribly panicked and trapped. I have no doubt in my mind that if my daughter hadn't been in the picture, one of two things would have happened. Either she would have come home to an empty house, or she would have come home to find her belongings on the curb. I had reached the end of my rope, emotionally. Yes, I wanted to save my marriage, but at that point, there was something I wanted more. I just wanted it to be over. I had endured weeks of pain worse than anything I could have imagined was possible, and then just when I didn't think things could get any worse, I discovered the affair. I couldn't take it. I had reached my breaking point. I was ready to cut my losses and run. Who knows? If that had been a real option, maybe I would have regretted it later. Maybe I would have thought myself a coward for not fighting until the last of my lifeblood had fallen to the ground.

But while I was freaking out, waiting for my wayward wife to come home from who-knows-where, my daughter was sleeping soundly in her bed, an innocent victim of her mother's treachery. I was done. I was destroyed. I was completely spent, and yet somehow I kept going. I did it for my daughter.

I don't know what that day meant. If we were childless, would I have gone away for a while, recovered some of my sanity and my energy, but then come back to fight another day? I have no idea. But I have no doubt that things would have gone very differently with no children in the picture.


ME: BH, 28
Her: WW, 27
DD: 4
Married 6 Years.
DDay: Early May, 2013
Divorced

Posts: 213 | Registered: May 2013
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 12:03 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

I think it's legit to say that I'm engaging in some magical thinking when I say that kids would have been a source of love and joy, had we had them before his A, gonnabe2016.

But I don't know of anyone here who has said that having children with their WS was a mistake...



BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
RidingHealingRd
Member
Member # 33867
Default  Posted: 12:03 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

Engaged vs M 25 years?

Engaged...100% dealbreaker. There would have been no marital history, no D required, and I would be much younger. I would have walked in a NY minute!!!

I would not knowingly enter into a lifetime with someone whose personal value system and strength of character was so deficient.

M 25 years and did not feel much like starting over. I was willing to give him that 2nd chance and I have no regrets. He steps up everyday to right his wrong.


ME: 54 BS
HIM: 61 WH
Married: 28 years
D'Day: 10/29/10
in R 3.5 years and it's working but he is putting 200% into it (as he should) to make it right again.

The truth hurts, but I have never seen it cause the pain that lies do.


Posts: 2109 | Registered: Nov 2011
crazynot
Member
Member # 24572
Default  Posted: 12:06 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

There's something else, from my own experience here. If you stay with a cheater who's full of remorse, as I did, going on to have kids and 20 more years together, then they fall in love with someone else in the midst of their kids' teenage years and leave the family giving no-one a choice? That's what happened to us. And for the record, my STBX is not a bad man, in many ways he was a wonderful husband and father. And the first time he strayed, when we'd been married six months, he was BESOTTED with me. We were soulmates, we shared everything, we even once dreamed the same dream. Yet by choosing to stay with him and share my life, I made myself vulnerable to someone I wasn't really safe with. Someone with the capacity to destroy the people he loved most and had vowed to protect because he had his head turned. It's ended ok for me and my two gorgeous kids. But it's been a difficult few years that I wouldn't wish on anyone. Someone who cheats when you've only been together for a short time is showing you a dangerous flaw deep, deep inside of them. The people here giving the 'run, Forrest, run' advice are often talking from the bitter experience of finding that out, and the desire to save others pain.


Me - 50
Him - 51
DDay 21 March 2009
Divorcing and delighted!

Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it's cracked up to be. That's why people are so cynical about it.


Posts: 860 | Registered: Jun 2009 | From: UK
gonnabe2016
Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 12:30 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

But I don't know of anyone here who has said that having children with their WS was a mistake...

I've seen quite a few people express this sentiment down in D/S. Not that they are *wishing* that their children had never been born, but that those children had been *made by* a different mom/dad. There are assertions of "I'm sorry that I chose this person to be one of my child's parents."

And I'm not sure if you were upset or offended by my *magical thinking* comment. My point was just that it is easy to romanticize something when you haven't dealt with the true reality of it.....and that is what I felt that you were doing. IMO, those types of thoughts keep you *stuck* and block or slow your path to moving forward.

[This message edited by gonnabe2016 at 12:52 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)]


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7944 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
StillStanding1
Member
Member # 40144
Default  Posted: 12:47 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

I think it's impossible not to project your own situation and feelings into each response you write here. It's a most natural human response to learn from your own life and use that information to form opinions about other somewhat similar situations.

I certainly can appreciate the point of view that perhaps some of us "old M people" seem like we are dismissive of the feelings and deep hurt of someone in a shorter M or an unmarried relationship. I honestly don't think that is anyone's intent. It is like arguing whether EA or PA hurts more, or whether a ONS is worse than a LTA. They all suck. Infidelity sucks.

Hurt is hurt. Betrayal is betrayal. Dashed hopes. Destroyed dreams. Shattered trust. Sadness. Loneliness. Hopelessness.

Every BS on this site is here because we are hurting and our hurt is very real and very deep for us personally. I don't think anyone ever means to be dismissive of someone else's pain. I think we are all trying, as best we can, to "help" one another from our own experiences. I know I will be more sensitive in future posts, though...

All that said, I have to agree with the posts that perhaps we are just screaming at our younger selves. We are wishing we had the foresight in our own relationships to avoid the unbearable pain we are suffering. We hope that maybe we can spare someone else a little extra pain down the road.

I'm just so sad for all the pain that radiates in these threads. Each of us gave ourselves to someone we loved deeply. We thought that person had our back. Until they stuck a knife in it. And in some cases, just kept twisting, even as we begged for mercy. It's just so very hard to read page after page of this and not feel hopeless sometimes.

Wishing all of us strength for our individual journeys and eventual peace, no matter which road we travel...

Edited for typos... as usual.

[This message edited by StillStanding1 at 12:50 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)]


Me: 40s BS, Him: 40s WH
M 21 yrs - 3 teens
LTA = 2+ yrs, Dday = 2/10/13, he moved out, he officially moved back in 1/25/14 and our work continues...

Posts: 657 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: MidWest
BrighterFuture
Member
Member # 38914
Default  Posted: 1:02 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

I agree with gonnabe2016 way of thinking. Staying with a known cheater early on in the relationship is not a wise idea. I stayed with my fiance who cheated on a previous galfriend and had boundary issues early on in our relationship for the sake of my son. I was afraid to be a single parent but now I wish I had left then when it was only 1 child. He cheated on me when I was pregnant with no.2. I kicked him out of my life when i JFO in february. It's been 7 months of separation and detachment just gave birth 3 weeks ago without him. I was with him for only 2 yrs. I don't intend to waste anymore of my time on him. I hurt almost everyday for me and my children but I have hope of a better future. I don't regret my sweet beautiful children but I regret choosing him as their father. For those of you in your 20s and 30s thinking it's gonna be hard finding someone, getting married and having children, imagine those odds after you've wasted your younger years with the wrong person. I don't want that to be me. I've learnt from the people here at SI.

[This message edited by VeryHurtbroken at 1:25 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)]


Me:30
Him:31
D-day:2/24/13 (I was 10 weeks pregnant at the time and DS was 15 months)
Status: Parted ways!

"If only I can fight just a little longer, I know it's gonna make me stronger" Jamie Grace-Holding on.


Posts: 340 | Registered: Apr 2013 | From: Ohio
BrighterFuture
Member
Member # 38914
Default  Posted: 1:03 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

Double post.

[This message edited by VeryHurtbroken at 1:19 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)]


Me:30
Him:31
D-day:2/24/13 (I was 10 weeks pregnant at the time and DS was 15 months)
Status: Parted ways!

"If only I can fight just a little longer, I know it's gonna make me stronger" Jamie Grace-Holding on.


Posts: 340 | Registered: Apr 2013 | From: Ohio
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 6:56 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

And I'm not sure if you were upset or offended by my *magical thinking* comment. My point was just that it is easy to romanticize something when you haven't dealt with the true reality of it.....and that is what I felt that you were doing. IMO, those types of thoughts keep you *stuck* and block or slow your path to moving forward.

Nope. I think, as I said, it's legitimate.

As others have said, it's subjective. I think I'm likely projecting my upset over the fact that WS practically lobbied for us not to have a child for years. I'm still building my own career and he would argue that I needed to keep pushing forward to achieve more and more success for our financial future. No time to have a child now, but in a few years, sure. I listened "for us"... and I couldn't have predicted that the future I wanted wasn't obtainable once I was established.

Now, ironically, all I have left is the career. Right now, anyway.


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
cayc
Member
Member # 21964
Default  Posted: 7:11 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

PL, one thing betrayal does to you - especially when you realize you were conned - is it causes you to question everything. And then you start saying to yourself "oh, if only I had turned left that day instead of right" then things would be different.

And also, it forces you into grass is greener thinking. And you start thinking how it would have been different/better had ... you had children for example.

It's crazy making. And there is no cure except to stop chasing those negative bunnies down dark twisty trails.

Don't ask me how to do that. I haven't figured it out yet. I spend many hours a day running hell bent for leather after those goddamn bunnies. So if you figure out how to stop, please please let me know.

I'm like you, pissed that I didn't get to have kids. All I have is my "impressive" career. Meh. People here have told me multiple times that if I really wanted children, I could adopt, I could foster etc. My career won't let me foster (I don't live in the US, and move every 2-3 years) but adoption is possible. And yet I haven't done it. And to be honest, it's because the drive to be a parent isn't what makes me regret not having children. Really it's a more fulsome regret of missing out on creating a family with a loving husband. That's my regret. That I didn't get that. But right now, I do have a good man in my life who has a nephew and a daughter. And my best friend and her two boys are very much a part of my life. And my goal is to just create a new definition of family for myself.

And that leads me back to what my original advice always is. If your physical ties to a spouse are weak (short M, no kids, no assets) then the emotional pain of leaving and starting over will pay greater dividends then throwing away year after year on someone who is going to do nothing but repeatedly let you down and cause you to make compromises that aren't in your best interests.

I understand PL, really I do. That's why I always comment on your threads. I'm talking to me as much as I am to you.

(((PL)))

[This message edited by cayc at 7:13 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)]


"The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The chicken is involved, the pig is committed." -Martina Navratilova
"The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

Posts: 3059 | Registered: Dec 2008 | From: Mexico
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 7:53 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

And to be honest, it's because the drive to be a parent isn't what makes me regret not having children. Really it's a more fulsome regret of missing out on creating a family with a loving husband. That's my regret.

Ding! Ding! Ding!

There was a time about three years ago when WS were probably at the best stage in our M. Very much in love. New house. Things were going great. Would have been the perfect time to start the family we talked about all of the time.

But I totally understand why we didn't, given our career circumstances. So I can't really play the "what if" game and not be engaging in magical thinking.

HOWEVER, we had begun talking about trying for one this year. Hoped we'd be pregnant by the holidays and had started looking into adoption as well. So when DDay happened, the loss of that potential reality, on top of everything else, was tough.

Not to mention, on the career side, I was forced to quit my job (or work with WS and OW every day).

So sometimes I'm staggered by the selfishness of it all. He really didn't think about me and the impact of his actions one bit. His intention was for me to never find out how he was spending his evenings while I was out of state working. They were only supposed to be having a fling while the cat was away, basically. So I don't know if he thought at all about the impact if I found out and R didn't work. But he managed to leave me in my early/mid 30s with no family, in a situation where I had to basically restart that career he was so worried that I have, etc etc.

But this brings me back to why I started this thread. When this happens to us, there are so many factors that go into whether we are willing to offer R. We invested our lives in these WWs in a number of ways. Sometimes that is manifested in a M. Sometimes children. Sometimes in shared careers, plans or hopes for the future. And none of these make leaving easy or staying necessary. But the ramifications of the trauma of this echo in so many ways, and impact so many people, that I think it's almost impossible to navigate what is the right thing to do.


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
gonnabe2016
Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 8:16 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

Nope. I think, as I said, it's legitimate.

Whew! I wasn't sure and just wanted to check.....

WS practically lobbied for us not to have a child for years. I'm still building my own career and he would argue that I needed to keep pushing forward to achieve more and more success for our financial future. No time to have a child now

Cayc's right.....her ex did the same, exact thing to her.
Mine kept me from going back to school or having my own career/job using the same methods of logic. "Now isn't the right time. The business is doing well. Don't worry, I'll take care of you." I, also, feel *ripped off* and as if he *stole* something from me.

That feeling of being conned is pretty awful. And honestly, it's pretty hard to deal with. I don't see myself ever NOT feeling resentful as hell about it.....but it's not something I can go back and change so I try not to dwell on it.....

(ps....."hi" CC )


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7944 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
gonnabe2016
Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 8:23 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

So sometimes I'm staggered by the selfishness of it all. He really didn't think about me and the impact of his actions one bit. His intention was for me to never find out

Yea, lovely, right?


No one's situation is easy. Making a decision about what to do isn't easy. Staying isn't easy. Divorcing or leaving isn't easy. That is why a lot of times the *key* to which direction a person should take is to look at the WS/BF's actions. Finding out you were *conned* or *not thought of* is a big ball of suck all by itself -- but add in a Wayward that isn't putting in 100% effort after the fact, and you have the recipe for your own emotional destruction.


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7944 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 8:49 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

But you know what's awful? Sometimes I still have the thought that maybe it would have been better if this all unfolded the way he planned. That I never found out, he ended the A before I got back, and we went on to have a family.

But one thing I'm learning from SI is that it's unlikely (a) that the A really would have stopped completely and (b) it if wasn't this A, it likely would have been something else in the future that tore us apart and exposed his character. Maybe it would have been children. (Just like *his* father)...

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 8:49 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)]


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
HopeImOverIt
Member
Member # 34517
Default  Posted: 9:48 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

I've ended a marriage with kids and a longtime relationship without kids. Both were very painful.

But the logistics of breaking up if you don't have a marriage and kids are so very much easier.

To undo a marriage usually requires a whole lot of legal fees and negotiations about pensions, debt, etc. Ending a relationship - and we were living together - meant simply agreeing I the couch, he takes the bed. No money consequences except replacing the bed.

The father of my children will be in my life pretty much forever. We get along better than many couples in S/D but we still have occasional friction about money or custody schedule channges. I have to see him at my children's graduations, weddings, etc. On the other hand, I don't have to see or communicate with my ex-boyfriend ever again. I have gone total NC and I think that makes it easier to heal.

Without a legal committment and children you still have pain, but you don't have the legal, monetary and custody issues on top.


Me: BW (50)
ExWH: (51)
2 teen-age boys
Divorced

Posts: 258 | Registered: Jan 2012 | From: PA
gonnabe2016
Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 9:55 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

Good description, Hope.

it's unlikely (a) that the A really would have stopped completely

Looking at your tagline, PL, this would probably have been the case......


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7944 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
7yrsflushed
Member
Member # 32258
Default  Posted: 9:56 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

Speaking from personal experience I have been on both sides of the fence. I did both. I was engaged years before I got married to STBXW. That person had an A and I kicked her out pretty quickly. She actually was pregnant with OM's child. SO yes in that case we weren't M and we didn't have children so she got the GTFO speech.


Fast forward to years later my STBXW has a 3 yr LTA with a coworker but we have 2 children and I am married. Everything in me screams giver her the GTFO speech but I have children with her. So it takes me 2 years before I fully realize she can't or won't own her shit and I file for D and she gets the GTFO speech. So yes having children did make a big difference. If I didn't have children I would still have had time invested, finances, a life we built, and vows I did take seriously. However she would have received the GTFO speech on Dday if I didn't have kids. Just my 2 cents and my opinion doesn't change the circumstances for you or anyone else dealing with infidelity. It's a personal choice.

ETA: having no children and not being married makes leaving "legally" easier in most cases. I belive that is why many people say leave to members that aren't married or have children. Everyone is emotionally attached to their spouse or partner so the leave isn't really referring to that part imo. The pain is going to be there regardless of whether you were married or not. Leaving my first situation cost me nothing but pain, leaving my M cost me pain, 50% of the time with my chidren, and much more financially. I lucked out with the agreement and didn't lose half my stuff but many people aren't as lucky.

[This message edited by 7yrsflushed at 10:03 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)]


D-day 5/24/11
BH = Me
2 children
The first true sense of calm I felt in YEARS was when I filed for D...
D hopefully official any day now, off to check the mail again.

Posts: 1899 | Registered: May 2011 | From: VA
ReunitePangea
Member
Member # 37529
Default  Posted: 10:16 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

But the ramifications of the trauma of this echo in so many ways, and impact so many people, that I think it's almost impossible to navigate what is the right thing to do.

I fully agree, when you are in the middle of it, it is difficult to see what the right path is for you. There are lots of dynamics involved that are unique to you and ultimately you need to decide what you think is best for you.

However, hearing from others on SI that have similar but different experiences that are able to relate but also look objectively at your situation and give you some insight can be very valuable. When the advise is given to someone not married, no kids, maybe just a couple years into their relationship is to RUN - I think that is good advise. If you look at statistics, others experiences, etc. there are typical patterns that are often followed that the likely outcome from this type of relationship betrayal so early is not good. Chances are more pain in life is likely to follow if you choose this path. The person is being given good advise by those with personnel experience with these type of situations and it is probably good for the person to hear this advise no matter which path they choose to follow.

Even though the advise may be to RUN, you can still choose a different path. You may be succesful with that path in life because you know it will be more difficult. Many of us are blindsided when we find out, we would never have thought the person we married was capable when we married them. If I paid more attention to how common it unfortunately is and didnt act under the false assumption that no way could it happen to me, maybe I would have suspected things much sooner and been able to do something about it.

I also think that when the advise is given to RUN, I don't think anyone is trying to minimize the pain the situation is. I think we all know all to well that it does matter what the type of betrayal is, the pain is still there.


BS - Me 38
WS - Wife 39
D-Day - Oct 12
Married 10 years
OM1 - 12-year LTA
OM2 - 9 month A turned into open relationship with couple for another 1 1/2 years

Posts: 472 | Registered: Nov 2012
sailorgirl
Member
Member # 38162
Default  Posted: 10:19 AM, October 8th (Tuesday)

That I never found out, he ended the A before I got back, and we went on to have a family.

I understand thinking this, and feeling regret about not having children. It might help to remember that you would have unwittingly been trapped into raising them with a broken man.

Imagine the pitfalls of co-parenting with a guy who is still basically a teenager himself.


Married 14 years, three amazing kids
H had 17 month EA/PA
D-day 1/5/13
Reconcilling

Posts: 787 | Registered: Jan 2013
PhantomLimb
Member
Member # 39668
Default  Posted: 12:10 PM, October 8th (Tuesday)

However, hearing from others on SI that have similar but different experiences that are able to relate but also look objectively at your situation and give you some insight can be very valuable

Completely!

To some extent I sometimes think that there is a tendency to think that our particular situation is "different" or "special." Of course, in many ways, it is... as is the case with any situation involving specific individuals and their unique context.

But SI really offers not only a measure of objectivity, but a dose of reality. I remember in the first few weeks on this site being so struck by the similarities between WSs. I think some people here call it "the playbook." It's almost frightening!

So it's not to say that SI is an equalizer of experience... but it helps lift the veil on the extent to which you might be viewing your WS in a light that is more favorable, optimistic, hopeful, loving than is the reality on the ground... simply out of shock, habit and what have you.


BS / D

Posts: 863 | Registered: Jun 2013
mrs. duped
Member
Member # 28668
Default  Posted: 1:33 PM, October 8th (Tuesday)

sailorgirl said it best:

Imagine the pitfalls of co-parenting with a guy who is still basically a teenager himself.

This is exactly what I am just starting to realize after coming out of my own BS fog.


me: BW-36
him: WH-34
married 8 years; together 13 years
one dd=2 years old
3 month EA turned PA with coworker
D-day: April 19 2010.
Trying to R

Posts: 141 | Registered: Jun 2010 | From: michigan
Topic Posts: 69