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Just venting and a word of caution

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wildbill52 posted 9/4/2018 17:49 PM

Well, I didn't just find out; it's been 15 years, but I go through spells when it seems like just a day ago. And I go through all the same emotions. I think I just need to be able to say these things to another person. 15 years ago I found my wife's laptop open to her email. I saw an email with the subject line something like "can't wait to be with you again." I looked for all the emails under his name, and found a whole log of the affair. My WW was out with girlfriends at the time, but when she came in that evening, I confronted her. She denied the affair, claiming just a close friendship. Granted there were no raunchy details, but the things they said to each other were not what you would say to a friend. I asked her to attend marriage counseling with me, but she refused. I went through all the self-destructive emotions that are common to the betrayed spouse. I blamed myself. I had uncontrolled anger ( I didn't abuse her, but I punched holes in a couple of walls). I became depressed, lost weight, and nearly got fired from my job. The lowest point was the night that she was out again, and I put away almost all of a fifth of scotch whiskey. I got blackout drunk. I don't remember taking the pain pills that I had left over from a knee surgery, but I was told that I did so. I woke up in a hospital bed. From there they moved me to the psych unit, where I stayed for a week. I was on antidepressant meds for two years and under the care of a therapist for five years. After I started to get myself together, around year 3, I began to look at my options. None good. I had financially positioned myself to retire early, at age 58. I was less than five years from my goal. I saw an attorney who advised that divorce would mean that I'd have to cut my standard of living in half, or work until I was past 70. I had big plans to do things in retirement that I'd denied myself during all the years of busting my a$$ in a high stress job. So, I did nothing. And here I am, so many years later, financially comfortable, well traveled, and living the life that most would envy. With a woman that I cannot trust. My advice to those of you out there who are facing this challenge at a younger age is to take great care before you consider reconciliation. Dealing with this problem later in life will seriously limit your options

Butforthegrace posted 9/4/2018 18:34 PM

So do you wish you had left her?

Momo24 posted 9/4/2018 18:52 PM

Can you clarify on what you mean with options?

I think I know but don't want to cloud it with my influence of what they are.

NorCalLost posted 9/4/2018 18:53 PM

((((Wildbill)))) I am so sorry for what you've endured for the last decade-and-a-half. It's just not fair.

Your post brought back painful memories for me. The first time my STBXWH betrayed me was when we were very young, in a two-year relationship. I, like you, don't remember all the details - but I very nearly took my own life as a result of the trauma.

We came back together later in life, got married, and now he has betrayed me again, decades later. We are now on the path to divorce. I have to say that the hurt has at times felt exactly like what I experienced when I was younger. But with the help and support of friends, family and SI, I am healing and realize that the man I love never really existed. I love a fictional character.

Knowing that, I struggle with the notion that my whole adult life was wasted in either missing him during our decades apart, or trying to make him happy when I was in a relationship with him. Because of who he is, I was facing a losing battle. There was no way for me to win. He never truly loved me the way that I truly loved him.

Alot of people choose to stay with waywards, for different reasons. I was not given that choice of whether to reconcile, but I now realize I'm lucky that I wasn't. My STBXWH cheated on the OW he left me for, and within three months of leaving me he'd already moved on from OW to somebody else. EDITED to add -I've since found out that OW left HIM because, partly, of what I shared with her, and partly because of what she called his "odd behavior."
He's just not capable of true fidelity to anyone. He's always looking for something shinier and newer, and he leaves broken hearts in his wake.

I hope that your decision to stay with your WW has not caused you too much stress over the years. I hope that you have salvaged some joy out of the pain she caused you.

You are in my thoughts.

[This message edited by NorCalLost at 12:46 PM, September 7th (Friday)]

ThisEffingSucks posted 9/4/2018 20:01 PM

I caught my WH cheating in 2006 with some office whore. I thought it was a one time thing because he was jealous of me giving attention to our two little ones. He seemed so sorry and canít believe he did this, blah,blah,blah. Our kids were 1 and 2 at the time so I R. Fast forward to 2016. I find out he spent the last 10 years screwing any woman who would spread her legs for him. That he hit on anyone and everyone he worked with. Whatís worse, is he brought them in our house to do it. Mine is a serial cheater with serious character flaws. At age 44, Iíve lost my house, he lost his career, lost hundreds of thousands and we are in crazy in debt, he has devastated my children and me. All of this so he could hear how wonderful he was and get laid.

Iím 2 years past D-Day 2. I regret every day I have spent with this man since D-Day in 2006. What a waste of my life and love. I love him in a father of my kids way, but I donít like him. I am filled with hate towards him most of the time because he doesnít do enough to help fix this. He gave his whores everything he starved me of. I struggled for years, sacrificing, while he acted like he was single and left me with all the work and responsibility. If you are young and your spouse cheats, then take a very hard look at the situation before deciding to R. R can work for some and not for others. Make sure you look at why they cheated to begin with. Does it seem like a situational thing where they made bad choices, or are they selfish and self-centered with FOO issues? Try to get enough distance from them to make the decision with your brain and not just because you love them. If I could go back, I would of D my husband in 2006. I made the mistake of trusting an untrustworthy and dishonest man. I too feel I have given up my life for someone who deserves nothing from me. Those were my best years and I wasted them on him. I am mourning the life I could have had if I dumped him the first time and ignored his bullshit lies. I could of been so happy, but instead Iím miserable with an untrustworthy lier.

annb posted 9/5/2018 06:34 AM

Hi, wildbill, thanks for sharing your story.

I am 13 years out and feel the same way many days. Some of the emotions are still raw when a trigger hits.

I didn't want to rock the boat for my children's sake, and we also live a comfortable life, splitting finances in half would have meant giving up things we both worked hard for (mostly him).

My WH is about to retire, and honestly, even though we have some great things planned for the coming years, my heart grieves for what could have been.

I have three friends (all neighbors) who decided to divorce their cheating husbands, and they are happy. Stopped looking back. All three of them. Living life, dating again, women in the 55-62 age range. Sometimes I am jealous of their carefree life.

There's a thread in the General Forum that was eye-opening, the question posed was, "What is the real reason you stayed with your cheating spouse?" If you scroll down a page or two, find it, the answers aren't surprising.

DarkHoleHeart posted 9/5/2018 06:47 AM

wildbill, ThisEffingSucks, you both advise that people should think very carefully before committing to R. While "think very carefully" aplies every time, judging on what you wrote, you didn't reconcile. You just chose to continue living your life with a cheater.

Wildbill, why don't you leave her now?

wildbill52 posted 9/5/2018 07:11 AM

Butforthe grace, I wish I'd never met her. Actually, we had a good relationship (I thought) for 25 years. She was a good mother to my boys. In a sense, I have left her. We sleep in separate rooms and rarely touch each other. We travel separately and live separate lives.

wildbill52 posted 9/5/2018 07:18 AM

Momo24, when I was in the process of making my decisions, I was climbing out of a deep hole. I was a zombie for over two years. I did not lose my job, but I was transferred to a less responsible position, with much lower pay. I had saved enough in my retirement account to retire early, travel, and live comfortably. I had bought a small farm and restored the 200 year old house. With the decrease in income, I had to modify my plans. If I divorced, I'd be left with enough to survive, but not follow my dreams. I would have had to sell the farm. I could have divorced and continued to work way past my planned retirement, which I was unwilling to do. The last option was to stay put and basically live separate lives in the same house.

wildbill52 posted 9/5/2018 07:19 AM

NorCalLost, I do have joy in my life now. They are called grandchildren. I hope that you do, too.

Momo24 posted 9/5/2018 07:36 AM

Thanks Willbill. But don't think that part of your life is lonely. Grandbabies help give that unconditional love (especially when they are little) but they can't fill in the void of being there for you--not the father, grandfather, friend etc...the part of you that your partner is suppose to understand, care for, support, and occasionally kick into gear. I find that is what upsets me. Not having the one person in my corner for who I am.

Butforthegrace posted 9/5/2018 08:09 AM

Wildbill, I'm curious whether the two of you ever discuss the "virtual divorce"? Does she ever say anything? Express regret? Seek to have you rekindle with her?

earlydetour posted 9/5/2018 08:39 AM

Well, I didn't just find out; it's been 15 years, but I go through spells when it seems like just a day ago. And I go through all the same emotions. I think I just need to be able to say these things to another person.
^^This. It's been 30 years for me. (((wildbill)))
My advice to those of you out there who are facing this challenge at a younger age is to take great care before you consider reconciliation.
My advice too.

Is your WW still in denial? Does she continue having As? Or is that a moot issue?

NamasteGirl10 posted 9/5/2018 09:55 AM

The first time my WH found his true soulmate was when I was 28 years old. It almost destroyed me, but I wanted him back. Fast forward and I am now in my 40's and last year I just discovered another hot and heavy EA and lots more flirting with other women in between. Just last week, he took a neighbor woman to the movies. I wish, I had left when I was 28.... My WH will never change and he will never be the man that I need him to be. He calls me jealous and insecure. I have ruined my life.

[This message edited by NamasteGirl10 at 9:55 AM, September 5th (Wednesday)]

wildbill52 posted 9/5/2018 14:27 PM

Butforthegrace, I'm not sure what a virtual divorce is. She never even acknowledged the affair, even after I told her that I had read the emails. I didn't think to print them, and she deleted them. Just like a child who says, "all gone." After I had recovered somewhat from my illness, I tried to get her to go to MC several times to see if we could find a safe place to discuss it. She replied that I could go alone if I felt the need, but that she didn't feel the need. Things were fine.

wildbill52 posted 9/5/2018 14:30 PM

earlydetour, I don't know if she's had other affairs. When we were married 5 yrs, I caught her kissing my best friend. I physically threw him out of my home in front of some of our friends. We talked about it and wrote it off as a one time alcohol induced indiscretion. There were a few other times during the next 20 yrs that my gut told me that something was off, but I didn't want to believe it, so I let it go.

mantorok posted 9/5/2018 14:40 PM

Having married my WW after she cheated 16 years ago and never told the truth and we both rugswept it I think I can relate. I never really got over it. Had the occasional reminder and it used to flare me up and bring back those horrible emotions. Now that DDay 2 has come and gone I'm now headed for D. I always think about a possible R even though it's completely off the table but I always come to my senses and know I'm doing the right thing.

Your post is another reminder that it's the right thing to do for me. No way am I spending another day going through this.

It really sucks and is just proof that R is more turmoil and sometimes life is too short.

Ripped62 posted 9/5/2018 21:53 PM

Thank you for sharing the reality of what you have been through.

PeaceLily210 posted 9/6/2018 14:11 PM

Thank you for sharing this.

While I know that I would be financially stable should I decide to D, it would definitely affect my ability to travel and explore the world as I want to.

I've pondered this all recently and had decided that if we can't fix the problems between us, I'm heading for D regardless of the loss of a lot of my dreams.

I don't want a roommate that I share grandchildren with. That's definitely not the life I'd choose. Thanks for sharing your story and validating what I was thinking. I'm very sorry that you find yourself in such a cold place. I hope those grands bring you a lot of love, comfort and peace.

wildbill52 posted 9/6/2018 19:48 PM

PeaceLily, I can appreciate your feelings (Oh, how I can). Had I been a bit younger, and in a healthier state of mind when I had to make my decisions, I might have decided differently. There are certainly times when I have regrets. But when I'm helping my grandson to ride a bike, or standing in a trout stream in Montana, I really have no regrets. It's when I'm sitting at home alone that my demons pay a call. And after 5 years of therapy and a lot of meditation I can deal with them also.

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