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I destroyed my husband

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DomesticTourist posted 8/3/2019 16:14 PM

On dday the OBS texted me saying her husband has herpes. I didn't believe her. I figured she was saying it our of anger. I would have said the same probably. I didn't tell my husband. She didn't either when they were texting so I really thought she lied to me. I guess he texted her again to tell her about the timeline and she told him what she told me.

Let me fix this for you.

You didn’t want to believe her, notwithstanding that she, as his wife, would likely know the truth whereas you, the mistress, would likely have never asked for or been told the truth.

You chose not to tell your husband because you intuitively knew it would deepen the betrayal and push him closer to divorcing you. You denied him more truth. Even in your timeline, you denied him this piece of information, even if you had merely said, “his wife told me he has herpes.” You chose to conceal still more from your husband when he asked you to tell him, once and for all, the whole truth.

You still cannot tell the truth. You are still trying to control the outcome. You are still trying to make decisions for your husband.

You are not entitled to make those decisions any more.

Get over yourself. If you cannot tell him the whole truth (inappropriate)

[This message edited by SI Staff at 7:41 PM, August 3rd (Saturday)]

BraveSirRobin posted 8/3/2019 16:22 PM

I will add: one of the most dangerous things about the situation you're in is that your subconscious may start encouraging you to lie to yourself as well. As my BH said to me, "No one wants to be the villain in their own story." It is unfortunately common, and always backfires, to start rewriting the facts of the A in your own mind to minimize the damage and preserve some shreds of self-worth. I did this extensively. A detailed timeline, right after the A, nails down those facts in black and white. But it's useless if you can't bring yourself to approach it with brutal, "no exceptions" honesty.

gmc94 posted 8/3/2019 16:25 PM

DomesticTourist has a point about believing the wife.... and let's not lose sight that OM is a serial cheater. But, of course, his presumably faithful wife is just an angry liar... right?

I'm gonna assume that a WS thinking of the harm done to the OBS is pretty difficult. And I'm gonna assume that thinking (or believing, per the AP) that the OBS is some sort of awful person (read: DESERVING of having their WS lie to them and cheat) somehow lessens that shitty feeling (on top of the shitty feelings of being found out by your own BS). This is another form of wayward thinking that must stop immediately. For your sake and for your BH's sake.

dblackstar2002 posted 8/3/2019 16:31 PM

I really hate to say it. But if the OM BS told her husband, this probably puts the nail in the coffin or her marriage. If she has known for a while and did not share this with him, I am sure it does. Sorry to say this but this is what i think...

pinkpggy posted 8/3/2019 17:02 PM

^^ agreed. Always the complete truth. It's hard to grasp that concept after dday though. So accustomed to lying and self preservation mode kicks in. It's hard not to think of it as protecting your spouse. Selfishness at it's finest.

HellFire posted 8/3/2019 17:26 PM

You chose to believe his wife was lying, because believing otherwise harms your image of OM. You feel you were special. That he would never cause you harm. You believe he loved you.

You chose to believe OM over his wife. And you chose not to tell your husband, because while,yes,you figured she was lying, but also because you dont believe OM would ever put you at risk.

You chose OM over your husband, again, in that moment.

That is going to be very difficult for him to process.

MickeyBill2016 posted 8/3/2019 17:27 PM

In politics, they say it's not the crime it's the cover up.

You need to stop trying to control the outcome. For any chance of R he needs to to know 100% of what he is forgiving. No matter how much it hurts. If it is possible to rebuild you need a solid foundation, you are not there yet if you held back the herpes info.

My X was a teacher and always thought that she was the smartest person in the room. WIth a bunch of 7th graders, she was. Get out of that mindset and think about journaling and re-writing the timeline, for you own sanity. And his if he chooses to look at V2.

I always hope these thing have a good outcome. Many don't.

[This message edited by MickeyBill2016 at 5:46 PM, August 3rd (Saturday)]

66charger posted 8/3/2019 18:37 PM

You knew there was a chance he had herpes and therefore you knew you may have been infected. Please tell us you did not have unprotected sex or the swapping of fluids with your husband, since you had any type of sex with your OM.

BTW, according to research, you should wait 6 weeks before testing to be sure of accurate results. Based on your timeline that is around the end of August. You have no idea if you do or do not have an incurable STD.

Zugzwang posted 8/3/2019 18:49 PM

But, of course, his presumably faithful wife is just an angry liar... right?
I'm gonna assume that a WS thinking of the harm done to the OBS is pretty difficult. And I'm gonna assume that thinking (or believing, per the AP) that the OBS is some sort of awful person (read: DESERVING of having their WS lie to them and cheat) somehow lessens that shitty feeling (on top of the shitty feelings of being found out by your own BS). This is another form of wayward thinking that must stop immediately. For your sake and for your BH's sake.

Including what Hellfire stated. Waywards do that because they are scorned and jealous of the betrayed wife/husband. They have a need to vilify the better person in order to feel like they have a leg up on them because they are emotionally attached to the other wayward. They do that or they grasp at straws trying to justify their actions by saying the betrayed spouse was a bad spouse. You know, because the betrayed are so horrible that the wayward never leaves them.

I don't know about other waywards here, but I know I always felt like I was in competition of the OBS. I always wanted to out knight them. You state your husband wasn't competing with the AP? Were you competing to win the AP's time and attention? If so, then you can see that the AP was doing the same for you and hence everyone that is cheating is making the betrayed compete. In your husband's case he knew it.

FoenixRising posted 8/3/2019 21:36 PM

First, you didn’t destroy your husband. You hopefully don’t have that much power over him. You did however, destroy your marriage. Maybe, if you’re lucky, you get another chance. Maybe you don’t. Forever is too far to know. Besides, learn from your past and mind the present. What can you do today? What can you do to better yourself and your situation? Healthy options of course. Painting? Walking? You’re worst is over. Your awake. You’re aware. You see how you’re choices are responsible for the current consequences. You need to take care of yourself in these next months because they will be hard. So, prepare yourself. Armor up and in doing that, Indulge in creating a new hobby that gives you peace and keeps you present, busy and focused. This sounds silly but it will help you pass the time. Remember, healthy choices.

N the meanwhile you need to figure out your whys and how’s. Read. Read a lot. You have yet to let go of the outcome. That is important step close up next in your list of things to do during recovery. That’s where you are now. Recovery. You and bs are recovering from the destruction. Be there for him as he needs. Infinite to be open. Hold nothing back. If he is going to stay, he deserves to have a choice in it and make a clear choice based on facts. It’s his right to protect himself. If he pushes you away, gently remind him you’re there shoukd he need you.

Take care of yourself right now. Your BS is suffering right now and only your truth to his questions can help him. Be available. Chin up. There are always good and bad days. Make the most with what ever you’ve got one day at a time.

Mene posted 8/4/2019 04:43 AM

Painting the other betrayed spouse negatively doesn’t help you. Remember, your combined actions with her husband’s hurt her. It also appears you are endorsing the image that your AP has probably painted of her to you to justify in his and your mind that she’s some type of monster and the affair is OK. That she deserves to be cheated on. NO ONE DESERVES TO BE CHEATED ON. This is typical cheaters’ behaviour. You need to demonstrate to your husband that you’re empathetic to the OBS because if you’re not he will think that you’re not empathetic to him either. Huge red flag.

Omitting, whether the OBS is lying or not, about the herpes accusation is wrong. It’s another red flag. This means you’re being selective to cover your ass.

You’re making good progress. Don’t regress. Cause you’ve made a couple of mistakes here that could derail your R. Irrevocably.

Pippin posted 8/4/2019 06:38 AM


I know you have heard this ad nauseum, but you must be completely, thoroughly and totally honest. If you have lied, omitted, hidden or minimized ANYTHING - and you would be a very rare wayward if you haven't - NOW is the time to put it in. Your husband is as wounded as he's going to be right now. If he starts to heal, and you hurt him again because he finds out more info, it is not only cruel but it may be the death blow. And if you leave anything out, it will haunt you for your entire life. SI is sometimes fractured on advice, but this advice is I think universal: total, radical honesty, from thousands who have BTDT.

This can be hard to do if you are in the habit of lying and your brain will find ways to be dishonest and make you not so bad, like with the herpes. You MUST fight that. Here's a practical idea. Low inference notes as a way to avoid bias. On a paper draw three columns. On the left, setting: day, date, time, location. Next column, facts: what someone might actually see. The AP walked into your classroom. You immediately got up from the table to walk to him. You spoke for three minutes. The words were ABCD. He left the classroom. He followed up with a text that said ABCD. Third column, your feelings: adrenaline rush when he entered, nervous about what he would say, nervous if anyone would see. No thought of your husband.

This kind of super detailed timeline will do a few of things for you right now. First, it will get you to practice radical honesty so that habit starts forming - by removing judgment so you can get past your frantic brain. Second, it will give you something productive to do with your panic energy. Third, it will show your husband you are dead serious about being honest and spending every waking minute on healing the situation. Fourth, there are excellent clues about your whys in the specific words and interactions.

In one of the interactions with my AP I described my husband using a specific adjective. It was absolutely not true. But it is INTERESTING and INFORMATIVE that is the word I reached for. That is the picture I was cultivating in my mind, and it did come from somewhere. That very specific word has been helpful for me figuring out my whys and for talking about our marriage. I have tons of examples of that on my timeline that have nothing to do with sex and herpes (though BSs need those details very much). Every detail of your interactions with the AP, how you thought about your husband at the time, etc is a clue about why this happened, what your coping mechanisms were, what kinds of lies you are able to tell yourself, and how to get out of it.

[This message edited by Pippin at 12:00 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]

Pippin posted 8/4/2019 06:47 AM


This is a good example of something that's going to be true for a long time. There is no right answer to the question of text or not text. If you do text, you are disrespecting his expressed wish. If you don't text, he wonders if you don't care/are in touch with the AP/fill in the blank with whatever. Any text you send will be met with a scathing rebuttal either in his mind or out loud. There is literally nothing you can do right. And probably a whole bunch you can do wrong.

So you need a long term approach. Try very hard to understand his feelings right now (you can't, but trying will get you closer than not trying). You know him and we don't - betrayed spouses in general will disbelieve and turn anything you say, but how will YOUR HUSBAND react? What does he do when he is hurt and scared? That will inform what you do.

Here's what I would do, knowing my husband, but YMMV. I would leave one line of communication (say email) pristine for logistics - kid, finances, who is in which house, what your job situation is, etc. Just facts. That way he knows when it's an email he is safe from hearing my feelings and won't be surprised. Another line of communication - maybe text - I would send a short text every hour. I might post a list of possible texts on SI so you can hear if any of them are particularly offensive to BS (my husband hated "you are the better man" and "it had nothing to do with you"). I wouldn't expect a response but if he did respond I would immediately respond, and over time I would learn a bit more about how he reacts and what he needs so I could help him. I would keep everything very very short. He can block you and unblock you at will, but I would persist, every hour, middle of the night if I was awake, until the divorce papers were signed. And maybe after that, up until the moment he got remarried. Then I would respect his new vow.

Pippin posted 8/4/2019 06:57 AM

Meeting with Principal

Just a couple of short notes on this. You are embarrassed and ashamed. You have negatively affected the school experience of your daughter, your husband, the AP's children, the OBS, the AP, the other children and families, the teaching staff. There will be gossip and children will learn that the adults and teachers in their lives are imperfect. You have breached professional ethics.

However. You have not broken the law. A principal who has been around a while and certainly a superintendent has done background checks and found pedophiles applying for positions in the school, has dealt with families who abuse their children over extended periods, and worse. You are not the worst person to sit in their office or cross their desks. Deal with the situation professionally and don't get mired in shame.

I believe the number one goal for you right now is to get yourself out of the school and hopefully to find a good placement for your daughter. The gossip will die down more quickly and everyone can get back to their main tasks. Your daughter won't have weird stories hovering over her for years. Your husband and you can participate fully in your daughter's school without wondering about chatter, hanging your head, etc. Let them know that your priority is getting you and your daughter out. Be honest, humble, and clear about your main goals.

Sorry if this was too much. I read and re-read and re-read SI in the beginning, and sometimes read past stuff but went back later and it helped in a different way.

I hope you are taking care of yourself and finding a bit of hope among the despair. All the waywards responding to you have been in your shoes in some way or another, whether coming to terms with lying or coming to understand how much they hurt their spouse or other similarities. I'm glad you found this community and I hope you are able to hear the care that people have for you in the help they are offering.

LifeDestroyer posted 8/4/2019 09:44 AM

I spent yesterday with our daughter. I got us some lunch, took her to the park, and went in the pool just to try to feel a little sense of normal. Which wasn't really possible because all that kept running through my head was everything I've been reading. Which is what I did all night long along with writing my husband an apology letter. I'm not sure when or if I'll be able to give it to him. I'm going to ask if we can keep emails open to communication about anything. With email he has the choice to open it or not, whereas text it basically opens up right there for you.

As far as the herpes, I know I will come off as being defensive when I explain it. The OBS texted me after her husband told her about us. She wanted to know how long it went on because he told her it was a one time thing, basically a ONS. I told her it had been going on for months and that we had sex one time. She then asked me if I loved him, and I told her that I thought I did during it. She then told me that he has herpes and asked if he ever told me that and that she thought I should know. I wasn't trying to paint the om as this mythical God who could do no wrong, no. I honest to God thought she was saying it out of anger because that is something I would think a lot of BS would do, I would probably do something like that out of anger and shock of finding out. I didn't say that to make her look bad. I know that I have destroyed her world too. I texted her again to apologize to her for what I did to her and her family.

As far as not telling my husband, I fucked up again. My head and world are spinning. I was in self preservation mode. I fucked up. Her text didn't come into my mind. I have a tornado going off in my head of everything I've said and done and lied about. I know none of that compares to what is going on in my husband's head. I'm not trying to make excuses even though that sounds like one. I'm just trying to say the right thing without coming off as defensive if that's even possible.

As far as work, I'm going to ask them if I can be transferred or let out of my contract. I know I can't and shouldn't work there. I don't want our child or the other child to hear any rumors. I don't want the teachers to look at them differently.

I want to say and do the right things with my husband. I don't want to push him away even more. I've confided in three friends this week. They all keep saying that wouldn't have been able to leave their kid. They would have stayed in the house, which in turn makes me feel like mother of the year. I didn't abandon my child. I respected my husband's wishes to leave the house. I don't want to be away from her. I'm the one that wakes her up in the morning and carries her out to the living room. I'm the one the gives her baths. I'm the one that sings her 7 lullabies each night. I'm the one that wakes up if she screams. I'm the one that sits with her on the couch in the morning while she twirls my hair around her finger watching that ridiculous show. I'm the one that's missing all of that because of what I did. It is killing me that I can't be there to do any of those things. I've asked him if I could stay in the guest room and he'll only have to see me when I'm cooking something. He said no. I don't want to go back and push him out. Push him into a crappy apartment. I want to go back because I fear that being home will make it easier for him to file those papers because he can't see me making any effort. I fear everything right now and I don't know what to do.

LifeDestroyer posted 8/4/2019 09:46 AM

The polygraph company just wrote me back saying they've stopped doing polygraphs for infidelity so they can focus on other aspects of their business.

HellFire posted 8/4/2019 10:18 AM

There are hundreds of BS here who had their WS take a polygraph. Keep calling places. You will find one.

Your friends may mean well,but whatever they say isn't as important as what your husband needs right now. Your husband doesnt trust you around him,or your daughter right now. You may have been a very involved mother. But,right now, he sees you as a woman who shattered his child's family. Who took her child to spend the day with her boyfriend's kids, at his home. So you need to respect his needs now.

Please never contact the OBS again. She doesn't want to pick up her phone and see anything from you. Contacting her to apologize was selfish of you. You did it because you wanted to,and to perhaps make yourself feel better. You need to leave her alone.

How many text retrieval apps have you downloaded? Any luck?

gmc94 posted 8/4/2019 10:50 AM

They all keep saying that wouldn't have been able to leave their kid. They would have stayed in the house.
Unless they’ve actually been in the position of WW/mom, they haven’t a fucking clue what they are talking about. Because affairs and infidelity are taboo and shameful subjects, turns out that folks who have not been in the midst of it really shouldn’t have much to say about their “what ifs”. I wouldn’t be surprised that these friends also have a sense that your BH had something to do with your shitty choices. Before I had a clue what my WH had been up to in my M, I’d said things like I could see why the WS cheated because of something I didn’t like about the BS – makes me want to vomit today. I have friends and family that love me deeply. I have one CLOSE friend who’s been in an A (20+ years ago she was the WW. I disapproved then and told her so, but remained a loving friend who listened to her, supported her and told her I loved her as her M fell apart. And now, when I’m the BS, she has done the same for me – with the bonus of being able to share her experiences as a WS). She and another family member who is a psychologist are the only people who get my attention on INFIDELITY related issues. And I guess I’m lucky bc everyone else has just been pretty decent and supportive without trying to tell me what I “should” do or what they “would” do if they were in my shoes. Imagine you’d been raped. Do you listen to a bunch of men who have never been raped tell you what THEY would do or what you should have done?

I'm the one that's missing all of that because of what I did. It is killing me that I can't be there to do any of those things.
Gently, do you see how you are victimizing yourself here? Something tells me that not once during your A did you ever consider these CONSEQUENCES. And that’s all this is – a consequence of your bad decisions. Say I got a DWI. I got drunk. I drove my car. I got caught. Now I’m losing my driver license, but still have to make my car payment, and I have a bunch of other shit to contend with. Instead of recognizing that I’m taking the bus for a year because I made an awful choice, I spend my time griping about what an asshole the cop was, and how he shouldn’t have pulled me over to begin with, that it’s not fair, given I was only a “little” drunk, and "just" the humiliation of being fingerprinted was enough for me to KNOW I'll never do it again, etc. Again, the measure of our character is not that we fuck up – as humans, we all fuck up. The true measure is how we respond to them. How we accept responsibility and consequences. How we make amends. How we find GRATITUDE for the life lessons we learn from those consequences. How a WS deals with the aftermath is just as much a CHOICE as having the A to begin with.

I want to go back because I fear that [not] being home will make it easier for him to file those papers because he can't see me making any effort.
I’m assuming the [not] I inserted was supposed to be there – ie that you fear being physically S bc he won’t be able to see your efforts. First, this is also selfish thinking – aka WAYWARD thinking (at least at this juncture). Why? Because it’s all about YOU and why YOU don’t want to be S. I suggest you work REALLY hard on trying to recognize that you are S because your BH needs to be – and he needs to be S because of YOUR poor choices. These are consequences. He needs – no he DESERVES – to have some space to breathe. To get some footing. Some space to learn to cope with the remnants of his life, his identity as a husband, his sexuality, his emasculation, and a host of other stuff even the most remorseful and empathetic and hard working WS will NEVER understand. WS always seem to think that S is all about THEM – when the reality is that it’s painful for the BS. It’s not a punishment for YOU – it’s a healing need for HIM. Remember – NO BS EVER ASKS TO BECOME A BS. We didn’t want it. We didn’t expect it – hell, most of us never even IMAGINED it could happen to us (because, you know, our marriages are “special” and we are a “team” and all that stuff that is now in the toilet). He feels like you have thrown him, your M – and even your child – away like trash. That’s harsh, but a cursory read of the posts here by BS will bear that out (it’s an oft repeated line- I feel like I was thrown away like garbage.. something I wrote on day 1 in my journal and was kind of surprised to find SI weeks later and see how many others used the exact same language).

So, the S is a consequence of your A. Now what? You can choose to see yourself as a victim in this, or you can choose to use the time apart wisely. You have 100% control over what YOU do.

Also – the "I fear not being there will make it easier for him to file" is just you trying to control the outcome. I suspect other WS here will tell you the same thing- you MUST let go of that. The reality is you have zero control over whether or not your BH files for D. The A, all by itself, is reason enough to file. He owes you NOTHING on this front. He does not owe you one second to make any effort. So- if he does file for D, does that mean that you halt all of your efforts? I sure hope not – and I suspect every other WS will tell you the same thing – you must work on YOU and address/change everything in you that made having an A an acceptable choice. You must do this whether or not you D. You must do this bc you will NEVER be a safe partner for ANYONE unless and until you do. As many times as you tell yourself that you KNOW you will NEVER do this again, there is a post here on SI from a BS whose WS has had ANOTHER A - sometimes years after the first one (look at my own tagline for an example).

I know this is harsh. And I can see how hard it is for a WS to try and navigate thinking and working on themselves (their whys, their hows, their entitlement, etc) – which has selfish aspects - and simultaneously focusing on (or rather, having empathy for) their BS.. There are other WS here that have posted on this stuff that I suspect would be helpful (and – shameless plug for SI – a paid membership that provides access to older threads can be a great tool – to be able to read through the journeys of others who no longer post on SI has been very helpful to me).

As awful as I’m sure this all feels, if you read around on the wayward side to some of the other early posts by WS, you will see that you are actually doing a lot REALLY WELL! Making a solid attempt at a detailed timeline is a giant first step. It’s kind of ripping off the biggest bandaid, so to speak, and as much as this immediate aftermath sucks, it allows your BH time to process his new reality.

pinkpggy posted 8/4/2019 11:36 AM

No to pile on. But one of THE HARDEST things I had to come to terms with was that during my affair, and due to my own actions, I was not acting in the best interest of my children, I was NOT a good mother to them. I made a decision that would (could, did) completely alter their world. I put my own selfishness ahead of their wellbeing. Attention from another man was more important then keeping them in a safe, loving home. I didn't see it then. But I saw it very clearly after. Every choice I made was a step towards undoing their life. It makes me sick to my stomach to think about.

Add that to my attention and energy put on my AP during that time, my focus being elsewhere, and I cannot claim to have been a safe, stable parent during that time. That's a hard pill to swallow. My shitty self worth and getting my gratification was put ahead of my children's well being.

You have to accept that right now you aren't the safe parent.

[This message edited by pinkpggy at 11:39 AM, August 4th (Sunday)]

HellFire posted 8/4/2019 11:44 AM

Read gmc's post. Then read it a dozen more times. Every word of it is SI gold.

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