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My Husband's Affair

BellaK posted 7/13/2020 23:17 PM

I found that my husband started an affair with one of his married coworkers.

It began at a party where they were both intoxicated and ended up kissing (I was not there). They ended up talking about it when they were back at the office, and by the time I found out, it had been going on for about five months.

He has come clean to be about everything, including that he was forming some feelings for her, but I have to ask, really? And this is why.

This sexual affair they were having consisted of finding dark places in the office during work hours. They were driving to parking lots of a Ralphís, Smithís or Vonís. They did bring it to their own homes a few times. Then once quarantine began, they would meet up at least once or twice a week again doing in a car in the middle of the day in a parking lot. Is this something that a man does with a woman for whom he has real feelings for? I think not.

Now that she knows that I know and he has called it off, she keeps telling him how difficult it is for her and how uncomfortable it makes her when she sees me walking in my own house when they have a team Zoom call. What in the actual hell? She seemingly has no regret.

My husband has had a few interviews and will hopefully have a new job soon; hopefully, she will leave, though. They are both guilty of being cheating and being disrespectful, but he has been my husband for 25 years, and we have many memories and have a lot of plans for the future. He promises that it wonít happen again, he seems sorry and has joined a menís group and is going to counseling, and we are going to do marriage counseling as well. So, thereís that.

Anyone have any comments on the actions of this twerp that was sleeping with my husband and any advice on how to deal with the pain and sadness that fills me up each day? I'm all over the place. One day I am in control of my feelings and feel like I'm going to walk through this fine. The next day I'm so angry that I could scream, then the next I'm so sad that I can feel my heart aching. I hate this.

leebick posted 7/14/2020 00:39 AM

Hi Bella. Sorry you have to be here with the rest of us; this isn't a club that anyone wants to join, but it's a good club full of supportive people who've each been where you are today. Read, read, read as much as you can of the threads, comments, and advice.

I understand staying because of the long-term commitment and length of the marriage. WH and I have been together 35 years, married for 27, so I get it when you talk about plans and such. It sucks to be this close to retirement and realize that not only the "fun" part of the golden years won't be happening, but that the financial stability may not be there, either. There is a large trade-off here, divorcing for emotional and mental stability, but losing the financial stability you've built, without, in my case, a lot of time to refocus and rebuild financially before retirement (I'm 64).

SO what did your WH and his AP share? If he's really called it off (did you read the NC email and witness him sending it), it sounds to me like a lot of hot, teenage sex, at least on your WH's part. Sneaky, fast, crazy locations, etc.- it must have been exhilarating for him, not just the physical act but all the surroundings and secrecy, the "maybe we'll get caught" aspect in the back of one's head while acting this way. HOWEVER... it also sounds like, just with teens, while the guy is getting his rocks off, the girl is falling in love.

I can't help with the anger and sadness. I still go through this every day, after 2+ years, although it's finally subsiding as I find my way out of the marriage I thought I had and am finding some new directions for myself. All I can say is decide what is going to work for you (and that might include staying and wrangling it out for awhile) and try to get to a place where you can find peace in your heart each night instead of that overwhelming sadness. Hang tough, know we are all here for you.

HellFire posted 7/14/2020 09:11 AM

You need to call her husband and tell him about the affair. Don't message him. Since she knows you know,she will intercept that message. Chances are high,her husband will make her quit.

He has no go complete NC with her. So one of them has to go. If she doesnt,he has to.

sisoon posted 7/14/2020 09:18 AM

I'm very sorry you've experienced being betrayed. I hope my post helps you.

You seem to put a lot of blame on ow. Do you realize her H could write an almost word-for-word exact copy of your post, that he, too, could blame the ap?

IMO, you need to face 2 big questions.

First and most important is: what do you want? Are you sure you want to stay together? Do you need time to decide?

Second, since you seem to want to stay together: is your H a good candidate for R? Will he do the work necessary to change from cheater to good partner?

Your H's going to counseling is a good sign. His promises mean nothing unless he figures out how to keep from allowing himself to cheat. That mean changing his thinking and changing his responses to feelings. A good IC can help him do that.

R is eminently possible if both partners want R and if both partners do their work. Which brings me to you.

On my d-day I was inundated with grief, anger, fear, shame, etc., and it took me a couple of years to process all those feelings. Processing the feelings was the work I had to do to recover, and I think it's work all BSes need to do to recover.

So how are you dealing with your feelings?

annb posted 7/16/2020 05:16 AM

Hi, welcome to SI.

I think right now you both need individual counseling, not marriage counseling.

If he is still communicating with the OW in any way, the affair could be ongoing.

Having an affair is bad enough, during a pandemic it is putting others lives in danger.

Does her husband know of the affair? If not, I'd inform him immediately without telling your husband you are doing so. The best way to end an affair is to shed light on it.

ThisIsSoLonely posted 7/16/2020 10:28 AM

I'm sorry you are here. My story, at least the beginning (I'm further out than you are) is similar to yours. I will give you the background before I address your question, so feel free to scroll to the end if you don't need it.

My WH had an A with a co-worker as well. They still work together, but (allegedly) are no longer engaging in the A. We still live together, but are no longer engaging in R. I will preface this by saying that the A lasted about 2.5 years. I caught him after it had been going on for about 5 months. It started as her talking to him about her H, the OBS (who also works with them and who was one of my WH's best friends - he was in THEIR wedding), and 2 weeks it accelerated to sex. Much like your situation, most of it occurred at work, but they did bring it home a few times, especially in the beginning when I was temporarily out of state for work, so it was easier to pull off. They talked daily and literally sent 1000s of messages to each other every month - AND talked at work as they worked together almost every day - so basically, for 8 hours every day, they were in constant communication in one way or another. Seeing as we all have to sleep, and I have a job, I would argue that during that time they spoke to each other far more than my WH and I did, even though we lived in the same house.

At d-day1, he called it off, but that only lasted a few weeks and it was back on. Apparently it was off and on for the next year, mostly on, but one of them (usually him) ended it and then went back. I caught him the 2nd time almost a year to the day after the first time, and again he claimed he wanted to R. After d-day1 I did not tell the OBS (complicated reasons relating to their work) but after d-day2 I did.

After d-day2 he went NC for 3 months and she messaged him periodically, telling him she loved him and missed him or hated him for "ruining her life" - basically every manipulative tool in the shed was used to bring him back. I have no doubt he at least thought about doing the same during that time...and eventually, after 3 months "it" worked (I say it as I have no idea if it was her reaching out to him that started it back or if he reached out to her - I don't care anymore about that either) and they started back up again, the whole time he was telling me he was going to "prove" to me that he wanted to R, which was bullshit. What he wanted was to go back to their secret affair and have me at home.

At the end of the NC period following d-day2 (I actually think these events led to the re-start of their A) the OW messaged me, pissed off that she had been sneaking looks at her H's phone and saw some of the messages I sent him. There is a thread a few years back detailing the messages she sent me as they were so outlandish. Message 1 told me her H knew everything I told him (he didn't - at all). Message 2 told me that I was not his "friend" and I needed to back off. Message 3 "reminded" me she and her H had a child and that it was highly insensitive of me to "ruin" their child's life by talking to the OBS about this. Message 4 was angry at me and said she was "tired of this bullshit infiltrating her life" - so yeah, no remorse, or guilt, or anything - in fact, the opposite. I did not respond to any of them.

The fact that those events, her reaching out to me, and me deciding to share this with my WH, which led to him contacting her because he was "pissed" which somehow led to them sexting and right back to square 1, his alleged "defense" of me long forgotten (NOT blaming myself at all - they are POS of the highest order) - yeah, I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND how you feel. I have since had 2 other communications with the AP - one she instigated, and another long, rambling email which I sent to her a few weeks after d-day3, the OBS and my WH, which was a vent FOR ME, telling my WH and the AP what pieces of shit they were, calling them out for a whole bunch of stuff they had done, attaching screenshots of texts and some other stuff so what I said could not be contested. The AP messaged me a few days later in a thinly veiled attempt to find out why I chose to write the email at that time and to be sure I didn't have any other info. My words were short, and choice, and gave her nothing. I haven't heard from her since, but as she and my WH still work together (although due to COVID they have not in about 4 months), she is still around. I am in IHC with my WH, and I will be leaving when my job ends this fall.

But your question was: what do you do with all of this hurt and anger and sadness and fucking misery and worry and stress that has been hurled at your doorstep? You will hate this answer, as much as I did when it was said to me...

The short answer is time, and clarity of thought, and making yourself Plan A.

You assess your options, realizing that you can and may change your mind at any time, and you prepare for the "worst" whatever that might be. If you have financial issues, look at your situation and start working on an exit strategy - not because you have decided to take it - but precisely because you have not. You go to counseling or find a friend(s) to talk to or ideally both. You find things to occupy your time. You try to give yourself some space between you and your WH, not to "punish him" but for you. You allow yourself to grieve, and you wait if you need to, to find some clarity. Set yourself some time limits - as in "I will think about things, look at my situation and what I need to be better prepared if I choose to leave, and look at my situation and determine what I need if I decide to stay and I will revisit this DECISION in _____weeks/months" and don't decide to do either 100% until then. I rushed a decision the first time - I didn't the second - I watched and waited and prepared, and now that unfortunately my WH showed his true colors I AM prepared and am able to leave in a much better position than I was in 2 years ago (ugh, I know - 2 years).

If your WH won't change jobs while I am not going to say he WILL go back to it (as there are no absolutes in life but death itself) it WILL be harder for you to deal with and the chances of it starting back up are much much higher.

As you can tell I could go on and on...I'm sorry you are here. You have no idea how much so. Unfortunately there are no easy answers.

[This message edited by ThisIsSoLonely at 10:32 AM, July 16th (Thursday)]

BellaK posted 7/17/2020 13:23 PM

Thank you to all who have responded. I truly appreciate your stories, your advice, your warnings, and your support.
I too am sorry that all of you are here as well. It's a horrible trauma to live.

I have decided to stay. I have decided to work on myself to be a better me. He is fully committed to working on his R. He is meeting with his CSAT which advised him to purchase a book called "Help Her Heal: An Empathy Workbook for Sex Addicts to Help their Partners Heal"
Going to SA meetings and he has a men's group.He has been getting calls from the other guys to help them through slips etc. It's good to see him giving back and working through this.

He is actively looking for a job and AP says that she is as well. It is difficult for me to believe anything that she says. She and he as well are both very selfish people and I'm sure she would rather stay and see him go than for her to leave. He has given me full access to his all of his devices, work and home. I have his work chat account installed on my own device so that I can see when she contacts him. I can at anytime go to him and ask to check his computer for anything proof of anything. They have to communicate because...he is her boss. So there's that. Their company has a policy about things like this and if he were to discuss the A with his boss, she is required to take it to HR and who knows what could happen then. He's worked for this company for 25 years and is a valued employee, therefore it's difficult for him to move along. I know, I know, then he should not have done this. I'm just keeping it real. I'm hoping that in the short run some opportunity will open up for either of them in a different department so that at least they are not working together on a daily basis. She has tried to start things up again maybe 3 times (that I know of) and he tells me about it and he shoots her down each time. They only thing that I've seen here discuss with him other than questions about work is when she talks about an interview etc. Oh and when she needs to take a few hours of the day to take her kid to the dentist or something. I don't like that she makes it personal by telling him why she needs the time. He just responds with an ok or a thumbs up. He says he doesn't miss her or the A. That he only feels embarrassed and ashamed.

As far as me reaching out to the OBS, I have considered this, as it could work to my advantage. I won't do this because he owns several guns...he is a gun collector and that scares me. I'm not saying that anyone who owns a gu or being a gun collector has anything to do with that. I have a history of something like this happening in my family... Not only is it a possibility of him doing something. I know too well that it can. My brother had an affair and when her husband found out he held him, hostage, at his office for several hours. He was not killed, thankfully, but it was horrible and scary. This was back in the early '80s when security didn't really suspect someone to walk in with a shotgun hidden under their coat. So if this OBS did not have this gun collection I think I would...but I'm still shy about this type of thing in fear because you just don't know what people are capable of, and though he shattered me and I'm hurt, disappointed and angry. I love my husband and I don't want to see him in that type of situation.

I am currently working on my boundaries and this is hard work. I'm learning something about myself. I'm too much of a people pleaser to put out boundaries and I depend on him too much to give him consequences of not sleeping in the bed with me or staying at his parents if he crosses a boundary. I have this abandonment issue that takes over and I want him near me. I think it's abandonment and control working together.

I have found a betrayal recovery radio on a Blogspot that is helping me, it's very geared to partners. I've purchased a course to take for partners to work toward post-traumatic growth. It's been great so far and was not overpriced. I believe that if I can focus on myself and build trust in my H as I see him working his program, I can begin to find another new normal. I don't know if I mentioned this earlier, but he has agreed to take a polygraph 2 to 3 times a year so that I have reassurances that he is not lying. I need things like that in order to gain trust in him again. I can't just let go and decide, hmm I guess he's not lying anymore. I need solid proof.

Again. Thank you to all, I can't tell you how much it means to me that you responded to my post, because you did, you showed me that I am not alone. And you are not either. I will stay here and learn more and try to heal alongside you all.


standinghere posted 7/17/2020 17:02 PM

They have to communicate because...he is her boss. So there's that. Their company has a policy about things like this and if he were to discuss the A with his boss, she is required to take it to HR and who knows what could happen then. He's worked for this company for 25 years and is a valued employee, therefore it's difficult for him to move along.

Iím not saying this to worry you, but if you are in the United States, the only way this will end if human resources finds out about it is termination for your spouse.

It does not matter how valuable he is, they will terminate him, and he will forfeit any outstanding compensation he might have that is not directly tied to his paycheck, such as performance and compensation for incentives. 30 years ago such behavior was $1 million settlement, today it can be much more expensive for a company, and very few companies of any substance do not have firm policies on this.

I would suggest that you contact an attorney, and make sure you are protected, financially, from his behavior. It is not too late to do this.

Carissima posted 7/17/2020 17:52 PM

I read all your posts, this is the 2nd time you caught your WH cheating and he lied to you throughout your 9 year reconciliation about abstaining from his addiction.
What makes you so sure you can accept his promises so quickly and so certainly?
I'm not saying don't reconcile but I would take your time, make sure his actions match his words this time. Definitely do what the above poster suggests and see a lawyer, maybe get a post-nup in your favour.

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