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Just Found Out :
Wife of four years, cheated with a mutual friend six months ago

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Marz ( member #60895) posted at 10:22 PM on Friday, November 12th, 2021

^^^^^^ exactly what Thumos said.

[This message edited by Marz at 10:24 PM, Friday, November 12th]

posts: 6791   ·   registered: Oct. 3rd, 2017
id 8698235
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longsadstory1952 ( member #29048) posted at 10:26 PM on Friday, November 12th, 2021

"I will do anything to fix this" is a claim they all make and they stick to that right up until you want her to do something she doesn't like. Do not put too much stock in that statement.

posts: 1098   ·   registered: Jul. 14th, 2010
id 8698236
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scaredwoman ( member #78680) posted at 11:01 PM on Friday, November 12th, 2021

I'm sure it has already been said, and I'll repeat it...she did not just "give in." She chose to go to him. Don't let her play victim and "I couldn't help myself" and all that. She went to him willingly.

posts: 202   ·   registered: Apr. 20th, 2021
id 8698238
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guvensiz ( member #75858) posted at 11:29 PM on Friday, November 12th, 2021

When you said it was because of alcohol, my first comment would be "alcohol can't make her do anything that isn't in her". But your next statement already made everything clear; alcohol has nothing to do with it. They flirted for a while, started an emotional affair, then PA and after having sex their connection has continued to this day. She went there sober and with an intention to have sex.
The one time thing is less worse possibility, that could be a lie. As suggested before, ask her for a detailed timeline to subject to a polygraph.

posts: 624   ·   registered: Nov. 14th, 2020
id 8698242
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SnowToArmPits ( member #50943) posted at 11:29 PM on Friday, November 12th, 2021

She seems extremely contrite and is constantly saying she will do anything I need.

Some betrayed husbands find it helpful for their cheating wife to write out a detailed timeline of what happened and when. When did he start coming on to her, did they meet and make out on occasion prior to the sex day, when did they communicate by phone/text prior to sex, did they communicate afterwards... all of that. If you want to dig even deeper, demand she describe how she felt during each of these things.

Hey she said she'll do anything, OK sister spill the fucking beans. Lift the lid up and let's look at this sordid affair of yours.

As other posters have told you, cheaters minimize their confession to save their ass and hide their shame.

"It was just one time". Boy we see that one a lot from cheaters, often it's a lie mate. There's all kinds of corollaries to that lie: I didn't enjoy it, we used a condom, I made him stop before he ejaculated...

Have you thought about the slog of reconciliation you're facing here? Lots of hard discussions, anger, frustration, demands, policing on your part. Might be a few years before you put this behind you. If you (and she) aren't up for it, divorce is how you rid your life of a drunken, cheating wife.

[This message edited by SnowToArmPits at 11:35 PM, Friday, November 12th]

posts: 412   ·   registered: Dec. 25th, 2015   ·   location: Canada
id 8698243
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Robert22205https ( member #65547) posted at 12:26 AM on Saturday, November 13th, 2021

IMO it's likely that everyone in your social circle either knew (or suspected it would happen). You are the last to know. Your true friends will be sympathetic and support you.

Is your wife financially dependent on you?

Who is the OM? Does he have a good job or a lot of money?

If he's a member of your social circle, will you or your wife have any contact?

Under the best of circumstances it's tough for the betrayed. And it's harder if you have to see him (even at a distance) because it's a kick in the head each time.

posts: 2491   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: DC
id 8698251
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Sharkman ( member #56818) posted at 11:31 AM on Saturday, November 13th, 2021

The real truth is on her mobile device. You may need to recover some texts, look at call logs, check apps for what’s been installed and I uninstalled, etc but it’s there

posts: 1751   ·   registered: Jan. 11th, 2017
id 8698281
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M1965 ( member #57009) posted at 12:12 PM on Saturday, November 13th, 2021

JB,

I am sorry that your wife gave you a reason to look for this forum. Obviously, there may be a lot more stuff related to this, but there are a few things that stand out from what has been written so far.

**************************************************

Wife of four years, cheated with a mutual friend six months ago

This friend had been propositioning her for months and she finally gave in.

The affair was a one-time thing I'm told, and I believe her.

I've told her I don't want her to talk to the AP anymore

If the sex first happened six months ago, and the ‘friend’ had been propositioning your wife for months at that point - and she never told you about that – then her affair/secret relationship with the guy began nine or ten months ago, became physical around six months ago, and then continued to the present day, because if you had to tell her she cannot talk to him anymore, she was still in touch with him and maintaining her relationship with him (whether it was physical or not).

Questions to consider would include:

If she was ashamed or remorseful about what she did with him, why was she still talking to him?

Why had she not cut him out of her life without having to be told to do that?

Why did she not tell you the moment the guy propositioned her for the first time?

Why did she not shut him down conclusively after the first proposition?

If all it takes for her to cheat is being asked several times, how ‘safe’ is she ever going to be?

Have any other members of your social circle have propositioned her?

Have you seen any of their communications, and do you have any way of checking the means they used to communicate and arrange their affair?

How often is your wife going to be around her affair partner in future?

****************************************************

She confessed because she has also been coming to terms with her alcoholism and has been wanting to clear the air on some of the things she did while affected by it

It was premeditated, I'll say that. She drove to their place sober; it wasn't a loss of inhibition after a couple bottles of wine.

The sex happened as part of a longer emotional affair that existed from the first proposition until the recent confession, and it needs to be viewed and addressed as something completely separate from the alcohol addiction. The two things are not related.

The months that preceded the sex, during which the other man (OM) made repeated propositions that were kept secret from you, were effectively a period during which your wife considered whether or not she wanted to physically cheat. And when she reached her conclusion, she did it. The sad thing is that she could have stopped it at any point by telling you what was going on.

*****************************************************

What's funny is that my instinct to protect her feelings kicks in and I want to console her but then remember she did this to herself and she needs to figure out how to live with it on her own.

JB, there are two things here:

1) You need to protect yourself from her, because she has the potential to ruin your life if you try to be her ‘knight in shining armor’, or you make repeated excuses for actions that damage your life.

2) She did this to you, not to herself. She cheated because she wanted to, and she kept a nine or ten month second relationship with another man secret from you, because she wanted to. It sounds like you are more committed to her well-being than she is to yours, and that is not a good dynamic for any relationship.

*******************************************************

Her best friend (someone I am friendly with but am not close with) has known about this for a while, but presumably didn't tell me because she thought it was my wife's duty to do that?

Best friends talk to each other, and it is unlikely that your wife did not tell her friend about the propositions from the guy. It will have put the best friend in an awkward position, but you have to remember that she is your wife’s best friend, not yours. She hid your wife’s secret because of that friendship, and is only talking to you about it now because you know about it, and she may be trying to help your wife by soothing your feelings. Be very careful about what you say to her, and if possible, say nothing at all.

*******************************************************

As others have said, the guy your wife maintained a second relationship with over the past year must be 100% out of both of your lives if you are thinking about staying with her. How you manage that with your social circle may be difficult, but it has to happen.

It is not impossible for relationships to recover from infidelity, but your wife has set herself two big challenges to meet simultaneously; beating/managing alcoholism, and addressing her infidelity. As stevesn has said, she has to do this herself, without you motivating her. If she can do that, she may be someone to consider reconciling with. It was not mentioned, but it would help her a lot to be involved with Al Anon, and get herself in one of their programs. It can be incredibly hard for alcoholics to beat the addiction on their own.

I am sorry if anything here sounds harsh, but I am writing it because you need to focus on your well-being and what you need to have a happy and secure life.

[This message edited by M1965 at 1:34 AM, Sunday, November 14th]

posts: 1213   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2017   ·   location: South East of England
id 8698284
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Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 1:30 PM on Saturday, November 13th, 2021

The first time he propositioned her she should have told you. A coworker of my husband did and as soon as my husband came home I told him. He cut the guy out of his life/work. Keeping that a secret was the beginning of the EA and somewhere in there it became a PA. Her Confessing does not take your pain away. The men here sound tough but they have been where you are and are giving sound advice. The only thing I challenge is about alcoholism. People do stupid things when drunk. They drive, they do dare devil stunts. I hate to say this but she wanted to cheat, otherwise she would have stopped. A very well known golfer had an affair with a very well known tennis player and they broke up two marriages. The truly awful thing is that bs husband was best friends with the golfer. His heart was broken twice. The two ws stayed married for about two seconds. Ah, romance.

There is no way around this. At some point it is going to go public. How are you planning on dealing with the guy? Are going to continue to be around him when the group is together? Reality is this changed your life. I hope you get a good trauma based therapist.

Stress, trauma, have profound effects on your health. The sooner you get through this the better. Do NOT try to tough it out. A dr. can prescribe something short term to help. You need to stay hydrated, no alcohol, healthy food and sleep.

Stay here. These guys know whats coming.

[This message edited by Cooley2here at 2:23 PM, Saturday, November 13th]

When someone walks away let them go
TD Jakes

posts: 3121   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8698292
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The1stWife ( member #58832) posted at 12:28 PM on Sunday, November 14th, 2021

She’s NOT a victim here. As with many cheaters the standard operating procedure (SOP) is to blame everyone or everything else.

Cheater: "It just happenedl" Actually that’s a lie as it didn’t just "happen"

Cheater: "it only happened once". Hmmmm…..

Cheater: "it didn’t mean anything". 😡😡

Cheater: "I was drunk". Typical cheater behavior

Cheater: "the OM/OW came on to me". And of course the cheating spouse didn’t run away or shut it down.

I hope this gives you some insight into the mind (and behavior) of a cheater.

We call it the Cheater’s Manual because the behavior is so predictable. Someone should actually write that damn book. I think it would be a best seller lol

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 11183   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8698375
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Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 4:46 PM on Monday, November 15th, 2021

Would you be willing to share what she’s doing about her sobriety?

I have a theory about infidelity and alcoholism.
I think trying to reconcile with an active alcoholic is near-impossible at best. There is always something that is above the marriage and even themselves. Something that controls them in a stronger way than whatever values or morals or expectations they might have. In fact – over the years I have been here – I have seen instances where I suspect the affair itself is initiated as a tool to manipulate the betrayed spouse from the "real" issue: the addiction.

What I’m wondering about is her need to confess. Makes me suspect 12 Step work – and therefore AA. One step is about making amends.

I think AA and true 12 Step is possibly the best way an alcoholic can reach sobriety. I think someone that is blessed with a strong home-group and a strong sponsor doing true 12 Step work has a head-start on many struggling for sobriety. Still not easy – but it’s like having on good sneakers when starting a marathon. Beats running barefoot.

If what I think is correct, then here are my two cents of advice:
That "friend" … He’s out. Out of your social group. Out of your daily interactions. Out of whatever impacts your daily life. The affair is not "his fault" per se. Even if he propositioned or initiated or whatever. But his decision to have an affair with your wife clearly shows he’s not the type of friend you want. If removing him from your circle requires letting others know of the affair. Well… so be it. Look at it this way: If he doesn’t respect your marriage who says he will respect the marriage of others in the group. Think your friends Fred and Hank want that type of man around their spouses?

If she is in AA, then confirm the 12 Step work. Part of that is being truthful and making amends. Really think about what amends you can have her make. Frankly the only one I can think of is to make her respect sobriety and be totally honest with you.

Strange fact often proven here on SI is that the actual infidelity isn’t the likely killer of marriages. We have plenty of posters like you that discover infidelity and still remain with their spouses initially. What kills marriages is the lies. The hidden secrets. The inability to establish something to build trust on.
This is SO important: Discovering NOW that WW and OM met 5 times and not once will do less damage NOW than discovering 3 months from now that she sent him a text a month later. Small truths can cause more damage if they are kept hidden than large truths shared NOW. Get that message to your wife: You need to feel safe in that you know EVERYTHING.

You don’t need to decide if you want to reconcile or not. In fact – even if you wanted to reconcile, I would start by establishing a better and longer sobriety. If she’s been sobered for 2 months… that’s fresh. Honestly – I think any therapy or MC right now would be like starting physiotherapy while a broken bone is still setting. I would think 6 months sobriety would be more to build on.

At the same time, I don’t think waiting in limbo for some months is healthy.
Maybe try this: Tell your wife that for now you aren’t sure what you want to do and how this will impact the marriage and its future. However, you want her to focus on her sobriety and you won’t do anything drastic while you evaluate your options. For now, you ask for three things: sobriety, fidelity and honesty.
If after some period, you feel safe she’s offering you these three things you might feel safe enough to commit to reconciliation.

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

posts: 10190   ·   registered: Sep. 29th, 2005
id 8698539
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gr8ful ( member #58180) posted at 6:56 PM on Monday, November 15th, 2021

I have a theory about infidelity and alcoholism.

Not denying her alcoholism but isn’t it relevant that she confessed to being fully sober when she made the decisions to go full consummated adultery? In other words, it doesn’t seem right to pin her A completely on her alcoholism. Perhaps that’s not what you were trying to do….

posts: 117   ·   registered: Apr. 6th, 2017
id 8698557
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Underserving ( member #72259) posted at 7:13 PM on Monday, November 15th, 2021

The fact she disclosed on her own is a good sign. Unless of course she was under some sort of pressure to do so. It’s not often a cheater will confess without some type of evidence.

Don’t get scared off by the crowd here. Your wife might have only had a ONS. It might have been more than that. No one here knows for certain either way. If you’re considering staying married, I would do my due diligence to make sure I know exactly what I’m "forgiving." It is common, as in it happens more often than not, that cheaters will minimize the extent of their Affair. Unfortunately that’s why it’s next to impossible to believe the ol "it only happened once" story. However, that shit happens too. Due diligence my friend. Unless you want to Divorce. You already know enough to make that call if that’s what you want.

It is possible for the marriage to survive after infidelity. It’s really fucking hard, but it is possible. I’m reconciling with my husband after an affair 5 years ago. I’m not someone who thought I could EVER stay after infidelity, yet here I am. It doesn’t make you weak, stupid, or any of the other shit the world will try to say about you. You’re still pretty raw and may not be ready for the R talk, but I thought I should throw that out there. I needed to hear that when I was in your shoes.

How are you holding up? I’m so sorry for what you are experiencing.

BW (32)Found out 3 years post end of AD-day 12-9-19In R

Infidelity brings out the cuss in me. I’m not as foul mouthed in real life. ;)

posts: 753   ·   registered: Dec. 9th, 2019
id 8698561
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Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 7:39 PM on Monday, November 15th, 2021

Alcoholism is a lot more complex than a person only being an alcoholic when drunk.

I don’t know if it factors in her reasons for the affair – but I do know it can factor in her ability to reconcile and it can also impact the OP wish or will or ability to reconcile.

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

posts: 10190   ·   registered: Sep. 29th, 2005
id 8698565
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 JollyBanshee (original poster new member #79590) posted at 1:25 PM on Thursday, December 2nd, 2021

Thanks everybody. You were all correct -- it was worse than I thought and the lies are continuing. I'm bailing.

[edit: no soliciting]

[This message edited by SI Staff at 1:49 PM, Thursday, December 2nd]

posts: 7   ·   registered: Nov. 12th, 2021
id 8702093
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Underserving ( member #72259) posted at 2:21 PM on Thursday, December 2nd, 2021

Ugh. I’m so sorry! Trust me, we HATE being right about this kind of stuff. If you want to share, we are here. Glad you are taking the steps needed to get out of infidelity. You’ve got this!

Wishing you the very best.

BW (32)Found out 3 years post end of AD-day 12-9-19In R

Infidelity brings out the cuss in me. I’m not as foul mouthed in real life. ;)

posts: 753   ·   registered: Dec. 9th, 2019
id 8702099
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fareast ( Guide #61555) posted at 4:17 PM on Thursday, December 2nd, 2021

So very sorry to hear this, but not surprised. Often it’s the continuing lies more than the actual A that doom any chance for the M. Take care of you. Please share if you need to vent. People here have been through this. If the AP is married please do notify his OBS. She deserves to know the truth of her life. Good luck.

Never bother with things in your rearview mirror. Your best days are on the road in front of you.

posts: 2952   ·   registered: Nov. 24th, 2017
id 8702117
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KingofNothing ( member #71775) posted at 4:27 PM on Thursday, December 2nd, 2021

It was premeditated, I'll say that. This friend had been propositioning her for months and she finally gave in. She drove to their place sober; it wasn't a loss of inhibition after a couple bottles of wine.

Alright, Jolly.. let's take a step back. Why didn't she tell you about how massively inappropriate this all was the FIRST time your mutual friend propositioned her? Have you spoken with this (former, hopefully) friend about just what his justification would be to poach another man's wife? How does he explain participating in double betrayal to a man he called a friend?
Your wife is certainly not off the hook here, but he's a scumbag. You are 100% on target that this man needs to be cut out of both of your lives forever. He is no friend. As for her, well, you answer some of your own questions. She was no victim. She can't blame this on alcoholism. She didn't drive to the man's place hammered. She should have notified you in advance so you could both take some proactive steps before adultery happened.

Her best friend (someone I am friendly with but am not close with) has known about this for a while, but presumably didn't tell me because she thought it was my wife's duty to do that? I'm not sure, but she (the friend) has reached out to me with words of support and consolation. At first I was touched by that but now I don't know how to feel.

I wouldn't be all that touched about that. She clearly picked a side in this affair and it wasn't you until after your wife (conveniently) confessed. Functionally, this was useless to you for ending the affair and you might have been able to work with it if she had just bothered to call you when she found out about it. IF she considers herself a friend of your marriage, she picked a very dim way of showing it. You don't have to make a big deal about her but just point out that's nice, but is of little value for your healing at this moment-- some earlier warning might have helped tremendously. She's not your concern right now, but she can't cloak herself in virtue about her contributions, either. They did nothing for you but tell you to jump out of the road AFTER you got hit by the oncoming truck. She's your wife's friend, not your friend, so don't expect much from that quarter.

In your future discussions about this topic, try to remain calm and structure the discussion somewhat. Start with something simple. What do words like "marriage" and "commitment" mean? Specifically, how does SHE define them, how does she put that definition into practice? Use examples from the affair and state, again very precisely, "let's look at action X with this man. Does that sound like it was within the boundaries of being committed to our marriage?" or "let's examine action Y.. does that sound, in retrospect, like you were committed to our relationship?" Given what we know about the human condition, she will start getting very defensive at this moment. That's expected. Simply say "I don't need to here the yeahbut right now.. (yeah, but I was drinking too much" Yeah, but he was propositioning me all the time" ). I want to know what YOUR boundaries for being married supposedly are. You came to me and admitted it to me. That means at some point in the past it was okay to break those boundaries we both held, and now it is NOT okay, or you wouldn't have bothered to ever mention it again. What's changed? Is he still pressuring you for more sex?

I bring all this up because early on, like ASAP, you have to make a determination in your own mind if this is a booze problem or an adultery problem, or both (and treatment priority if so). Substance abuse is a separate issue from adultery and should be handled on its own concurrent timeline. What it ISN'T is an excuse to sleep with strange penises. Please don't accept that for another second, as you are letting yourself in for a short marital life of mental torture. You are here to survive infidelity; that means, your first priority is self preservation. If she is the raging alcoholic she claims to be, that might be outside of your ability to "fix things". The sooner you grasp that idea, the better. Good luck.

Rex Nihilo, the King of Nothing
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“If you’re going through hell, keep going. Just please stop screaming, it’s not good for morale.”
— Winston Churchill

BS 3 DDays/Attempted R, it failed. In a better place

posts: 777   ·   registered: Oct. 7th, 2019   ·   location: East Coast USA
id 8702121
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src9043 ( member #75367) posted at 9:14 PM on Thursday, December 2nd, 2021

I am very sorry this has happened to you. There usually is more to the story, especially if the AP is a "friend." The one saving grace is that there are no children and the marriage is short. Move quickly and get the hell away from her. Again, you must notify the OBS if there is one. She has a right to know. It is your duty to tell her. Good luck to you. Stay strong and focus on what has to be done. You will be happy you did months from now. You will be sorry you didn't if you stay with her. I speak from experience.

posts: 506   ·   registered: Sep. 7th, 2020
id 8702191
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WontBeFooledAgai ( member #72671) posted at 9:48 PM on Thursday, December 2nd, 2021

Glad to hear that you are leaving this bad situation.

Meanwhile, to add to what @Thomos said....your WW is NOT a victim. Nor is she a damsel in distress who got played by Big Bad OM. Anyone who tries selling that as an excuse is missing the point. The thing is, in your marriage, when it comes to the most important thing your WW must do, she had ONE job. And that one job was to protect you and your relationship. This not only includes but applies ESPECIALLY TO protecting you and your relationship from those who not respect boundaries. This included but was not limited to shutting down any advance and telling you about it, especially if you thought the guy was a friend of yours. This also included not putting herself in situations where something bad could happen--such as meeting OM or another guy one-on-one for without you there, even under the guise of it being innocent.

[This message edited by WontBeFooledAgai at 9:51 PM, Thursday, December 2nd]

posts: 346   ·   registered: Jan. 26th, 2020
id 8702194
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