Reposting my story nearing 2nd anniversary of DDay. Is there any hope for me to regain my dignity without destroying my family?
I’ve been lurking here after posting my story a little over a year ago. My WS and I have been trying to reconcile after her affair, but I feel like I’m trapped in a prison. She feels now that everything is back to normal and that we should just be able to simply return to our normal lives. Her idea of reconciliation is to sweep everything under the rug and hope that time will heal the wounds. Now that I’m nearing the second anniversary of DDay, I am at my wits end. Every time I talk to her about getting a divorce, she responds with "how could you do this to the kids?" and/or "well, if you want to do that to your kids, you are free to leave." Also, any time I bring up the affair, the AP, or the OBS, she responds with "I have moved on from this, why can’t you?" and "these people (AP and OBS) don’t matter to me, why should they matter to you?". She claims to be completely over the fallout of the affair, but I am still tormented daily. Tonight is Open House at our school and we will for sure run into the AP and OBS, which will send me through the roof. I thought I would update and post my story again to see if people thought there was any possible way to save my family. Here is my story. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
On June 11, 2020, I did something that I promised myself (48), and my wife (43) that I would never do. I broke into her email. In her email, I found out that she has been having an affair with a guy (a buddy of mine) from few blocks over for more than 8 months. We have 3 kids: 5, 8, and 13 and the AP has 2 kid: 4 and 13.
There had been so many warning signs, and I must have asked her throughout the affair at least 20 different times if she was seeing someone… and she always flat out denied it. So, because we had been through so much together and because I never doubted for 1 minute that she didn’t love me, I chose to believe her.
These emails had an entire history of their relationship. They were deeply in love one minute and then breaking it off the next. Apparently, he asked her to help him leave his wife. So, my wife rallied her 3 Doctor friends around him and they decided to help him leave his wife. My wife’s best friend was our kids’ pediatrician, whose boyfriend is a Psychiatrist. The third doctor was the pediatrician’s psychologist friend. The Psychiatrist and Psychologist each took him on as a patient and would then discuss their sessions with the pediatrician who in turn would fill my wife in. All this in an attempt to give him the strength to leave his wife. Together, they formed a 5 person A-team on a mission to break up both marriages, with the pediatrician at quarterback.
However, despite all this professional help, the AP did not leave his wife. After a whirl wind start of illicit/secret love and sex, the relationship became toxic and he wound up manipulating my wife. He kept stringing her along but always gave her enough to stay. Probably did the same to his wife, too. I saw in email the several times that she tried to break it off, but he would always somehow convince her to give him another chance. Based off her emails and subsequent stories, she was in love and thought she could fix him.
She was convinced that my children would be better off after his wife and I were discarded. She bought into this this Brady Bunch fantasy of a "fun, blended bonus family with a fun grandma /cook (her mom) and 8 stockings on the chimney." But, the relationship was still super toxic. He was hopped up on anti-anxiety meds, drinking heavily, and a joke of a man. The kind of married man that would secretly seduce his buddy’s wife right under his nose. But, despite my wife physically driving him to an attorney to file divorce papers a month before DD, he didn’t pull the trigger and called the attorney the next day to tell him not to file.
When I confronted her after reading the emails, she screamed "but I love him, I can’t leave him, he needs me!" She became an emotional wreck. In a panic, she called him from several phones and couldn’t get him. He finally texted her back saying "this is NOT an emergency." So, she called his wife, met with her, and gave her a 20k view of the affair. The relationship was immediately over.
The day after I found out, he asked to come talk to me. He arrived with a super cocky attitude and was offended that I didn’t offer him a drink. While attempting to leave, I beat him to a bloody pulp in front of my wife in my front yard…. But not so bad because he was able to drive home and call the police, who came and spent 2 hours talking and taking photos. Charges were never filed and my wife was super excited and turned on that I was willing to fight for her. She was suddenly in love with me again.
We spent the summer of 2021 doing marriage counselling and we got to the root of the affair. How she felt I was disinterested in her and how I was no longer fun. All I cared about was working out, eating healthy, my work, and my kids. More importantly, however, she claims that some events that happened during a family vacation with my sister’s family zapped her back into the emotions she felt when I left her when she was 3 months pregnant with our oldest (13 year old). She was married to another man when we met and I quickly got her pregnant. I was confused and questioning if the kid was really mine or not, but after 3 weeks I came to my senses and begged her to take me back. It took me until our daughter was 6 months old to win her back, but ever since then she’s always felt pain because I abandoned her. She was never able to forgive me for it and it consistently came up several times a year since. This would always be her nuclear option that she would drop when times got tough. I guess I can accept my side in what lead her into the arms of another man during the pandemic, but I do have some reservations. In my heart, I think the abandonment thing is just a way to blame me, but I feel so bad for doing that to her that I just sucked it up.
However, she stopped going to MC regularly after 3 months and would only go when I asked her, saying that she doesn’t need help, but that she would do it for me. For the first 9 months after DDay, she spent a RIDICULOUS amount of time stalking the AP, his wife, and his family. Afterwards, the stalking eventually slowed down, but was still there up until her mom got sick and passed away last summer. Presently, I’m not aware of any stalking, but if she’s doing it… she would never let me know. Because we live only a mile away from the AP and the OBS, we do run into them from time to time and the OBS has bad mouthed my WW many times to our common friends… as recently as about 4 months ago.
The first time I spoke to her about divorce was in March (2022), when I hired an attorney. She convinced me to give it 6 months to try to keep our family together. I reluctantly agreed, under the condition that we get a new pediatrician for our kids and her mom (who lived with us) goes back to her home country for a few months to allow us to work on things. A few weeks after her mom left for Sweden, her mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Last July, we spent thousands and thousands of dollars on plane tickets and cancer treatment, only to have her mom succumb to the illness last August. My wife and her mom were very close and she was heartbroken. For a while, she blamed herself and the AP for her cancer. Then, she shifted the blame to her AP, whom she now claims to "hate more than anyone in the world for killing my mom." Last summer was pure hell trying to get my family through that. But, I sucked it up. My kids were also very close to their grandmother because she lived with us for most of the time we were together.
Since last August, I have tried to keep everything bottled up inside to give her and my kids time to grieve. Now that life has seemingly returned to normal, the feelings of betrayal and anger have returned and exaggerated by her refusal to show any remorse for the affair. I know she would resume MC if I wanted to, but she seems to have everything figured out—We got the cause of the affair, so we can just ignore everything and get over it with time. I don’t know that I can do this anymore.
At this point, I am fed up. We have a house out of state and it would be very easy for us to move away. Doing so would put us closer to my family and her 2 high school friends. I have asked her no fewer than 50 times for us to move, but she refuses because she loves our house and our neighborhood. Plus, our kids have some really great friends and she doesn’t want to pull them apart. She knows that I despise her Pediatrician friend, but she refuses to give up that relationship. I feel like the only way I could continue this relationship is for us to move, but I doubt she will agree to. I never wanted to give her an ultimatum, but I feel that’s the only recourse I have left short of divorce.
So, people… is there any hope for me or am I destined to either break up my family or live without any sense of self-respect?
23 comments posted: Saturday, April 1st, 2023
As I begin the long road to Divorce. Any advice to offer?
12/11/2022 marks the 18 month anniversary of DDay. We tried to reconcile, paid thousands of dollars in therapy bills, took vacations, read books, and spent time together. At times, it was great and just like it was when we started out together. However, I’m simply not able to forgive her for trying to destroy our family and she has not taken the steps to earn it. My original posts have dropped off this site, but you can read my story in my profile. Trust me, it’s something straight out of a cheap novel and definitely worth the read, if not just for entertainment. Worst of all though, is that it’s 100% true… at least to the best of my ability.
Early this year, I decided to file for divorce and retained an attorney. However, my WW convinced me to give her 6 more months and I agreed under the condition that her mom moves out for a few months and that we get a new pediatrician for our children. After dumping the pediatrician (begrudgingly on her part), her mom left to go spend time with her other daughter in Sweden. A couple weeks after arriving, she was diagnosed with terminal cancer and we rushed her back here to the US to get treatment. Her other daughter, husband, and 3 year old son came, too. We spent thousands of dollars on treatment and plane tickets, but she succumbed to the disease in early August. My wife and kids were heartbroken, and so was I. Not to mention the intense stress caused by having all those extra people in my house. And the 3 year old was a real handful as an only child who didn’t understand English.
I had to give her time to grieve but in the back of my mind, I knew that the only path forward was divorce. Her stalking of the AP and his wife continued after her lies about the A caught up to her with some of our shared friends. (the AP lives less than a mile away and our kids go to school together). It’s almost as though she has started to believe the lies she’s been telling people.
So almost 3 months after she passed, right before Halloween, I told her that I wanted a divorce. She agreed to work on this with me amicably, without huge legal expenses and without getting ugly. The tentative plan is to get through the holidays and get our finances in order with the goal of setting us each up to live independently by the start of the next school year. We agreed not to take any action without the other knowing about it and to work hard to part on good terms, for the sake of our 3 children – 5,6,and 13.
I’m writing this now with a clear head and tremendous sense of relief… like a barbell was lifted off my back. I’m no longer needing to take anti-depressants and alcohol to get through the day and I’ve got the spring back in my step. I really don’t care if I have to move out of my house and start my life over. In fact, I’m pretty excited about it. Anything is better than living with the constant anxiety brought on by this serial cheater and liar.
As I start down this path, I’m going to need some support and advice. Instead of waiting, I figured that I would tell my story now and see if anyone has any tactical suggestions on what to do next. I have a long road ahead of me and zero experience with this. Since many of you have been there already, do you have any advice for me? Is the idea of us collaborating on this a pipe dream? I’ve been in charge of the finances our whole marriage and I fear she’ll changer her tune when she figures out she won’t be able to afford our big house by herself.
4 comments posted: Sunday, November 27th, 2022
How to tell WW you want a divorce?
Our DDay was this past June and I've done everything I can to try a save my marriage. It's just not working and I think it's time for a divorce. We have 3 kids and a beautiful house.
I've worked with a mortgage officer and learned that it's possible (although barely) for me to buy her out with a cash out re-fi. I know she won't like that idea, but even with child support, she'll never be able to afford that on her own. Plus, it's the only way I can think of that doesn't involve uprooting our 3 elementary aged kids.
I've also spoken with an attorney and I have the retainer fee sitting in the bank. Her birthday is coming in a couple weeks and she's taking a trip with her girlfriend to Miami Beach.
She doesn't know that this is what I'm planning, although I doubt she'd be super surprised.
What's the best process to follow? Should I keep things close to my chest and tell her only after I've filed? Or, should I discuss with her my intent to file for divorce? Should I wait until after her birthday so as not to ruin that for her?
The objective is to keep things amicable and to try to work through things without a huge fight. I feel that I'd be super reasonable with things. I'm not so sure about her, though. If you read my story in my profile, you'll see that she's not wrapped very tight.
BTW, I live in a no-fault state and all martial assets are divided 50/50.
Also, should I offer up my money for her to pay for a retainer for a lawyer? What did you guys do about that?
12 comments posted: Saturday, January 29th, 2022
Our reconciliation is falling apart - Not sure I can make it through the holidays
After reading my story, most people think I'm foolish to think that R is possible, but I'm just not ready to give up on the family that we've created. Although, I'm starting to feel it is hopeless.
This weekend, we took some big steps back. My wife's AP and his wife live in the neighborhood and our oldest daughters go to school together, so we run into each other from time to time and we have many mutual friends and acquaintances. Following DDay, the AP's wife told many of our common friends about the affair and posted about it like crazy on her FB and Insta... so lots of people know about it.
A few weeks ago, my WW started confiding about the A with one of their common girlfriends. Primarily to find out what the AP's wife had been saying and to try to smooth things over with their family because our sons are on the same baseball and basketball teams and spend a lot of time together.
This past weekend, the girlfriend’s husband and I were together at a birthday party and he told me that "I’m very sorry for what you are going through." This guy is/was buddies with the AP and the AP confided in him about the affair several months before DDay, but he never said anything to me. He basically stopped calling me to hang out and our conversations were limited to our kids. That’s OK, we weren’t that great of friends anyway.
At first, I told him I didn’t want to talk about it, but he told me how bad he felt knowing about it and that he wanted to stay out of it. He said that after a while, he cut ties with the AP and just wanted to stay out of it. I told him how hard this has been for me and described some of the physical struggles I’ve gone through such as weight gain, anxiety, and that I’ve started smoking. I told him briefly how I thought I busted them twice, long before DDay, but that my WW simple lied to me about it and I trusted her because she would never do anything like that to me. We talked for a no more than 10 minutes and aside from the 2 instances of lying, I provided no additional details about the A.
After I told my WW about the conversation when I got home, she was super hurt. She felt that the message I sent to him was that she was a tremendous liar and that I bashed her in front of him. She spent most of the day alone in our bedroom beating herself up. Later, she sent me the following text:
"You bashing me in front of people is disrespectful towards me and is not conducive to repairing a marriage. Is this is how you feel, why are we wasting our money on MC? You obviously can’t stand my guts or you wouldn’t instinctively want to bash me to people. Just admit the reality."
We spent some time yesterday contemplating divorce and we are close to realizing that this marriage is beyond repair. OMG, I can’t wait until the holidays are over. We have 3 kids and this may very well be our last Christmas together as a family.
Was I out of line about this? The only details I shared was that I confronted her twice during the A and she lied her way out of it. Nothing else.
Oh… and to make matters worse, her mom lives with us and was drinking and scolded me about it. She told me that I should have defended her and told him that I was a horrible husband and that the affair was my fault because I wasn’t meeting her needs. But that right there is another thread in and of itself.
38 comments posted: Thursday, December 16th, 2021
Learned about wife's 8 month affair this past June. Been trying to reconcile since... how will I feel about this when I'm 70? (m
This Topic has been moved to General
0 comment posted: Wednesday, November 24th, 2021