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Just Found Out :
My 49(M) wife (46F) had a 1+ year affair I just found out about

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Robert22205https ( member #65547) posted at 8:53 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

I'm sorry you're here. You're not the first BS to think their marriage was 'perfect'.

I'm going to try not to repeat some of the good advice you've been offered.

1 - google 'PTSD' .... study the symptoms. Although your posts imply you're handling the shock well, you could be in a form of denial (which is a natural human reaction designed to avoid pain). That's one of the reasons you need to give yourself time before deciding on R or D or making other major decisions.

2 - Don't dismiss a timeline (subject to a polygraph) just because you don't currently need it.

The specifics of preparing a timeline helps her too and is a much deeper & different experience for her than just crying and saying she's a bad person. It's also something she can share with her therapist. And you can chose not read it and/or send it to your therapist or just seal it/store it.

3 - You know her better than I. She may feel if she beats herself up enough then you'll forgive her .... or punishing herself makes her feel better about herself. Or that somehow you'll conclude that she's in so much pain that she'll never cheat that again and you should now trust her.

She needs to also understand that the drama may be a good start but long term she needs to focus on rebuilding your trust.

posts: 2451   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: DC
id 8546909

JS84 ( member #48148) posted at 9:21 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

Sorry you're here. Are you sure this is her only affair? Or the only time she cheated in your relationship?? It doesn't sound like you had a clue until she slipped up with a hotel bill. And after being together 20 years that should be concerning. Is this the first time she cheated, or the first time you caught her cheating? I know you're dealing with a lot as it is but that might be a subject to bring up.

The problem is without consequences there isn't much incentive to not do this again. If her marriage, her love for you, her family, home, etc weren't incentive enough to stop her from cheating on you in the first place a bunch of "I'm sorrys" and feeling bad aren't enough to not guarantee a repeat performance.

There are plenty of waywards who cheat, get caught, feel bad, say and do the right things for a time, and then turn around and cheat again. It happens. Usually moreso with waywards who basically get let off the hook with a scolding and not much else.

Although, in the end there is no real guarantee of anything. Your head seems on your shoulders but I do agree with others you still kind of sound in shock. When that anger stage hits, which can sometimes take months to show, it can be bad.

If you're not going to lay out consequences at the very least you should be trying to protect your marriage. Any friends who knew of the affair and didn't at least encourage her to come clean need to go. I also always recommend exposure which is a very effective deterrent/consequence and helps hold the wayward accountable.

But just stick around and get advice. Take what makes the most sense and ignore the rest. Good luck.

[This message edited by JS84 at 6:16 PM, May 29th (Friday)]

posts: 443   ·   registered: Jun. 6th, 2015
id 8546915

Jameson1977 ( member #54177) posted at 9:40 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

Hi particle, welcome and sorry for the situation you are going through.

It does sound like your WW realizes what she has done to you and your marriage. On my dday, I felt the exact same way as you. My WW responded the exact same. Balling her eyes out, the self deprecating talk, love bombing, etc. Through all of this period, my gut told me things didn’t add up.

Read my tag line, 3 days, over 3 years. I’ve said it here before, my WW deserved an Oscar for her “performance”. It is very, very rare that a WS reveals everything on dday. I’ve seen maybe one instance of this in 5 years on SI.

You may, like most of us, go through wild swings of emotion. It took me about 9 months after dday to sort of stabilize.

We discuss IC for both the WS and BS, but for me, IC didn’t do much for me. For my WW, it was the most important part of R. I had to give her an ultimatum before she would be really invest in IC. It is also important to find a good IC, one that has experience with infidelity. Like all professions, there are good and bad.

posts: 726   ·   registered: Jul. 16th, 2016
id 8546920

fooled13years ( member #49028) posted at 9:50 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

it seems I am not in the OMFG stage anymore and I feel I should be? I am a logical person but this is not logical at all

You may not be there right now but do not be surprised if you find yourself there again.

Find and read the stages you may find yourself as you travel this road.

Check out the resources available through the healing library.

Good luck.

I removed myself from infidelity and am happy again.

posts: 1042   ·   registered: Aug. 18th, 2015
id 8546923

Unsure2019 ( member #71350) posted at 10:17 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020


Sorry you’re here. This is a club none of us wanted to be in. Things seem to be moving very fast for both you and your WW dealing with the A and wanting to start repairing the M. SLOW DOWN AND BE VERY CAREFUL!!! This can easily lead to rug sweeping for both of you, which can cause very serious problems – especially for you – down the road. TAKE YOUR TIME BEFORE EVEN CONSIDERING TO OFFER R.

I agree with others – you need to decide on and impose consequences now. Also, I would agree with others that WW needs to write down a detailed timeline. Among other things, it should include 1) When the flirting started with the OM and how she felt about it and about you, 2) When she decided to fuck the OM for the first time and how she felt about it, you and your family, 3) How she felt about fucking the OM for over a year and lying to you countless times – how did she feel about the potential to lose both you and her family,and 4) This is just me, but I would want to know was the sex good or better with the AP, did WW do more with AP than me,and on and on.

Finally, after she has completed the timeline (and not before), tell her she needs to read it out loud to you. This is an incredibly potent tool to have WW really own what she did, see the A for what it was and all the destruction she has caused. It may be hard to listen to, but it will pay enormous dividends for you. Good luck

posts: 211   ·   registered: Aug. 21st, 2019   ·   location: California
id 8546928

Limboaz ( member #59200) posted at 10:24 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

Just a couple of things. If she was in an affair with this guy for a year, it is almost certain that she had developed strong feelings of attachment to him. Those feelings won't just disappear overnight. Affairs can bring out powerful emotions and limerence, which makes them extremely addictive.

Even if she has good intentions, there will at some point be a powerful temptation to reach out to POSOM, and if that happens, the affair can restart in an instant. It's a rare wayward wife that can go cold turkey. Like I'm talking very rare.

Don't be so certain you can monitor everything she does. Burner phones are cheap and easy to get, and to hide. VAR's are one tool you can use to catch the use of burner phones.

The other thing is a detailed timeline is just as much for her as it would be for you. It will force her to face the ugliness of what she has done, and force her to question the justifications she was using to ease her guilt. When she sees it written out, she will likely realize how pathetic those justifications were.

You sound like a decisive, no-nonsense guy. That will serve you well as you move forward.

Best of luck.

[This message edited by Limboaz at 4:31 PM, May 29th (Friday)]

posts: 118   ·   registered: Jun. 13th, 2017   ·   location: Southwest
id 8546930

 particle (original poster new member #74493) posted at 11:28 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

I am a bit overwhelmed at the moment. I appreciate all the feedback and will be back on very soon.

I can't thank everyone enough.

posts: 44   ·   registered: May. 29th, 2020
id 8546940

oldtruck ( member #62540) posted at 11:32 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

the toxic friend must be gone. she is not a friend to the marriage

and she is not a good friend to your WW. good friends do not

encourage their friends to cheat on their husbands.

if a WW will not go NC with all of those that supported her

affair she is not recovery material.

posts: 1383   ·   registered: Feb. 2nd, 2018
id 8546941

HouseOfPlane ( member #45739) posted at 11:54 PM on Friday, May 29th, 2020

it seems I am not in the OMFG stage anymore and I feel I should be? I am a logical person but this is not logical at all

Feelings have a mind of their own, so to speak. Don’t sweat that you aren’t sticking to a script. There isn’t one.

As others have noted, be prepared for a roller coaster.

You’ve rescued her from the affair. At some point, you will probably realize that the person you rescued isn’t the person you thought you rescued. That the wife you had only lived in your head, and the one lying there in bed with you is someone else, a stranger who pulled the curtain back on the truth for a brief moment. You may decide you don’t actually like that person.

And so on....

Sending strength!

DDay 1986: R'd, it was hard, hard work.

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?”
― Mary Oliver

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id 8546944

MickeyBill2016 ( member #56459) posted at 12:05 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020

When she calls herself a monster and other names I would not jump in and say things like "you are not a monster you just did some bad things" I would not say anything, just let it hang there.

My XWW would say some things like that and I didn't respond, I'd look at her for a second and just go on with what we were talking about, But my XWW showed only a teeny tiny amount of feelings, that was her style.

9 years married.
13 years divorced.

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id 8546947

Butforthegrace ( member #63264) posted at 1:48 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020

Periodically a new member appears here believing that his marriage is the pink winged unicorn that can recover miraculously and seamlessly from infidelity by torturing the facts to check boxes on a checklist. Infidelity Bingo!

Eventually you'll realize that you're human, with feelings. The very first line of your very first post is really the only one that reveals your truth:

I do not want to get into all the gory details. It hurts to type out details

Yes, it does. This site is rich with hundreds of cumulative years of crowdsourced wisdom about infidelity. One truth: the details matter.

"The wicked man flees when no one chases."

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id 8546963

fareast ( member #61555) posted at 1:55 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020


I think you hit the nail on the head when you said she is feeling the consequences. The consequences we all hope to see. The consequences of seeing the immense pain you have caused someone you love by your hurtful actions. We see so many here who never get there, especially so soon after dday. You will see a lot of skepticism and rightly so. But I think you have a good handle on whether your WW is being sincere.

You both should get counseling. She needs to find her “Why” if she wants to try and rebuild trust. Take care of you. It sounds like you have a good base to work with. You will be on the emotional rollercoaster for a while. If she is truly remorseful you will see consistent actions over time. Good luck.

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

posts: 2850   ·   registered: Nov. 24th, 2017
id 8546965

M1965 ( member #57009) posted at 2:05 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020


Give yourself time to breathe. This is all very new to you, and you have gone from having a bomb dropped on your world to being bombarded with a ton of advice.

It is a lot to take in, so give yourself time to calm down, and do not rush into any decisions. And that includes making any promises to your wife about reconciliation or second tries at the marriage. Make no commitments, and make it clear that it is going to take you some time to figure out whether you want to remain married to your wife.

Your wife needs to go through the process of accepting that she may lose everything that she had for her to rediscover its value. It sounds like she came to take all the good things she had for granted, and got complacent. That complacency became boredom, then resentment, and she became easy pickings for any passing opportunist who could spot a mid-life crisis Mom.

Her affair was nothing to do with you, so forget about examining what you might have done wrong, or not done enough of. In some ways, the problem is more likely that you did too much, gave too much too easily, to the point where it was all taken for granted.

What mattered to your wife about her affair partner was not that he was in any way 'better' than you, but that he was a 'new' man, and someone other than you.

Many years ago I asked a long-term girlfriend why she liked to get compliments from other men when I used to pay her compliments regularly and did my best to make her feel loved and special. She replied, "You're my boyfriend. You have to say that stuff. Some other man doesn't have to, so when one does, it is something special".

Can you see the way that mentality works? Compliments and good treatment from a husband or boyfriend matter less than a compliment from some random opportunist who wants to get into their pants because the husband or boyfriend "has" - get that entitlement HAS - to be nice, so what husbands and boyfriends do is diminished in value.

At the time, I thought, "Why the Hell do you think I HAVE to do or say anything nice? I do it because I feel like doing it, not because it is a contractual obligation. And if you take it so much for granted, how about I stop doing it?" And of course, while I thought that, I never said it, but I really wish that I had.

As for all the tears and histrionics from your wife, be careful about how you interpret them.

They might be 100% genuine, and 100% remorseful about how badly she has abused you, your love, and your trust. Or they could be for herself, because she realizes how much she stands to lose if her motel-based second relationship costs her everything the two of you have built up over the past two decades.

I will never forget the same long-term girlfriend revealing something in a discussion about an argument with a former boyfriend that stunned me. She had done something to upset the guy, and she described the things she had done to try and get herself out of trouble. She said that she had apologized profusely, said that she would never do something like that again, and "...I tried crying, but that didn't work".

When she said that, I stopped her, and said something like, "What do you mean, you 'tried' crying? Like it wasn't what you felt, but you thought it might get you out of trouble?"

"Well, yes", came the reply.

I felt totally lost. I am sure I am not the only man for whom women's tears are like Kryptonite. You might be the most badly-wronged man in history, but if the woman who wronged you starts crying, all your resolve and anger melts away. It disarms us.

The way to tell if you are being emotionally manipulated is by staying as neutral as you can, and observing the actions that show the way a person really feels. Forget the words. Forget the tears. Actions are the most revealing indicator of a person's true motivations.

I actually offered her a 50/50 split that night, no fuss. So fear of being poor or having a hard time wasn't a consideration and she could have supported that asshat if she wanted to.

I am saying this as a fellow betrayed man, and accompanied by a bro-hug, but please stop being such a push-over that invites being taken for granted. Stop being Mr. Decency, Captain Fair Shares, and Johnny Permanent-Shoulder-to-Cry-On. Seriously, you want to offer her a deal that lets her support the worthless opportunist that used her for free sex and disrespected you? Who benefits from that? Why would you do that?

Please, my friend, understand that it is not, and never has been, any more of a privilege for you to be with your wife than it was a privilege for her to be with you.

She also facebook texted a friend she was confiding in, in which I DID read their entire history. Her friend was encouraging her to divorce, the crap coming from that persons messages was infuriating, like she was cheering my wife on, the last text from my wife to her was "We are back together and going to work it out, you should have helped me with this". Her several "I'm sorry" responses have yet to be responded to.

You later wrote that you are not going to 'force' your wife to break contact with that friend, but you know what? You should. Make your wife choose between you and that awful, toxic friend.

The process will be a revealing demonstration of where your wife's loyalties lie. And do not worry about revealing that you know about those exchanges; it will benefit you to make your wife feel like all her digital exchanges may have been seen by you. Let her worry; it may influence how much she tells you.

If you want to remain with your wife, and re-boot a second version of the marriage, it has to be one where your wife no longer takes you and whatever good things you do for granted, as if she is entitled to them.

And for yourself, take a step backwards and consider what you want and need in future.

posts: 1213   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2017   ·   location: South East of England
id 8546966

Mene ( member #64377) posted at 4:02 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020

The general consensus and thousands of stories here everyone can attest to, is if she’s had a LTA she most probably has had other affairs too.

You most probably have the tip of the iceberg.

Polygraph her to see if she’s had other affairs. Everything is possible for a woman or man who can conceal from their spouse an affair that went on for at least a year.

I’m not saying this to distress you. I’m telling you this cause it is a common pattern. And cheaters have common patterns.

By design or not, your wife will not tell you everything about the affair with the AP. She will only tell you what you can prove and maybe a sprinkle more. Don’t ever forget. She didn’t end the affair. You did. Had you not found the receipt she would have continued the lies and facade. It could have gone on for another year or two and more or perhaps she would have found another man to have an affair. Afterall, she said she felt special having that attention and after a while it would have waned with this AP and she would have looked elsewhere. You caught her. She didn’t have a light bulb moment and come to you to confess and fix the marriage.

She’s in damage mode at the moment. She will say anything to save the marriage. All you can do is wait and observe her actions. This will take time.

Life wasn’t meant to be fair...

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id 8546987

HellFire ( member #59305) posted at 4:10 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020

Do NOT share this site with her.

posts: 3780   ·   registered: Jun. 20th, 2017   ·   location: The Midwest
id 8546989

Mene ( member #64377) posted at 4:15 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020

Ask her, how long would this affair had continued had I not found out?

Life wasn’t meant to be fair...

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id 8546990

Buster123 ( member #65551) posted at 4:54 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020

You're still in shock, a few of the basics, it typically takes 2-5 years to recover from infidelity with a fully remorseful WS doing all the necessary work and the heavy lifting to restore the destroyed M. What you're most likely seeing right now is not remorse but regret, she regrets getting caught, she did not end the A on her own, you had to catch her otherwise it would still be ongoing, in fact you said she was in the middle of a sex date when you told her to come home, so it's pretty safe to assume that this would still be ongoing had you not caught her, for how long ? who knows ? eventually deeper feelings for OM could have developed. I personally think you jumped into R way too quick, especially when she doesn't even know why she did this and has not had much consequences for her huge betrayal.

Here's a few suggestions:

1) EXPOSE the A with ALL family and close friends, exposure typically kills the "beautiful, exciting and romantic" aspect of an A and replaces it with ugliness, pure shame and embarrassment, the more she hates the A, the more she will hate OM and the least likely she will be to cheat again in the future. Based on what you posted your children are old enough, they were betrayed too, have her apologize to them, don't help her hide her A, don't lie to your kids, not even by omission, this also helps with remorse and emphasizes the severity of her huge betrayal.

2) You said she still needs to get tested for STDs, I know you said you are in the clear, still, stop HB for now, tell her to get tested ASAP (full panel) and make sure you read the results, yes the "walk of shame" to the doctor's office also might help a bit with remorse.

3) The cheerleader friend should go, you mentioned you can't control this, but if she's not even willing to give up this FB friend to save the M she destroyed then she will not be a good candidate for R.

4) Demand she writes a detailed timeline of the A, this forces her to think back and remember all the lies and face you, it also helps destroying the "magical and exciting" aspect of the A, plus she won't be able to deny some things later (we've seen this happen before, not that uncommon).

5) Consult a D attorney to know your options, knowledge is power, remember that your WW is now a proven cheater and a liar, she lied to your face THOUSANDS of times to carry a one year LTA, should R not work out or should you decide this was a dealbreaker for you (which is ok) you will be making more informed decisions, while you're at it, ask the attorney about a postnup in your favor that is enforceable (no alimony, she doesn't touch your retirement etc.).

6) Cheaters typically only admit to what you can prove, you will often read here "there's always more" and this is true in most cases, if there's a chance to R successfully, then honesty is paramount, she destroyed your trust and she should be eager to prove to you she's now telling the truth, demand she takes a polygraph, this may not have been her first rodeo.

7) She needs intense IC with someone who specializes in infidelity (very important), forget MC for the time being, at this state it's most likely a waste of time, NOTHING you did made her cheat, you are/were on the same M and didn't have to stray.

8) Download "Not Just Friends" by Shirley Glass, it's free, have her read it then discuss it with you.

Others will chime in with more advice, slow down, it takes time, post frequently, the collective wisdom of SI could help you go through this difficult situation, we've literally seen it play out THOUSANDS of times here and other websites, every case is different but cheaters typically follow a similar script.

posts: 2473   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018
id 8547002

redwing6 ( member #72593) posted at 5:11 AM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020


I'm so sorry you've found yourself here. This is the club NONE of us ever wanted to join. You're going to find (eventually) that the collective wisdom here is...immense. There is almost literally a playbook that cheaters go by. There are exceptions to every rule. But by and large, most WS follow it almost to a T.

As such, I've put together a couple of guidelines that I've gleaned from here and the reddit threads.

The 1st is what you should expect to have access to while you figure out what you want to do. The 2nd is what a genuinely remorseful WS should show. It's not all encompasing, and I suggest that you take what you can use, and ignore the rest.

1. You have all passwords for everything (phone, electronic devices) and all accounts are open to perusal whenever you need to see them. If he will not give these to you it is a RED FLAG and he is keeping secrets.

2. If he is not safe on the computer, then he uses it in the family room where he can be monitored, OR he loses computer privileges except for work. He lost the right to privacy when he engaged in the activities outside of the marriage.

3. He goes to counseling consistently and for the long term to fix what is broken in him.

4. Complete honesty about everything. Period. This is the only way you will ever be able to trust him again.

5. His location is monitored at all times via the phone.

6. He takes complete responsibility for the affairs/sex outside your marriage. There are many honorable ways he could have expressed dissatisfaction with the marriage or coped with stress other than breaking vows. You ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS SHITTY CHOICES.

7. No contact with any women outside your marriage. Period. It is obvious that he has no boundaries.

8. HE gets no say in how you deal with this. He lost that right when he engaged in the activities outside of the marriage.

9. IF he IS an addict, he goes to 12 steps meetings consistently and for the long term, gets a sponsor and begins to work on himself.


Below is a list of what a remorseful WS (Wayward Spouse) should look like. There is a difference between remorse and regret. There is a lot of useful information about this and other affair-related topics in the Healing Library in the yellow box on the upper left.

If a WS is truly remorseful, they:

• are non defensive

• examine their motives for their affairs, without blaming their spouses

• accept their roles as healers to their wounded partners

• do not resist breaking off all contact with the affair partner

• show genuine contrition and remorse for what they have done

• make amends and apologize to loved ones

• apologize often, especially the first two years

• listen with patience and validate their spouses’ pain

• allow their spouses a lot of room to express their feelings

• respect the betrayed spouse’s timetable for recovering

• seek to assure spouses of their love and commitment to fidelity

• keep no secrets

• do not maintain close ties with those who condoned the affair

• are willing to be extremely accountable for their time and activities

• frequently check in with spouses as to how they are doing

• are aware of and anticipate triggers of the affair

• are willing to get rid of hurtful reminders of the affair

• don’t minimize the damage the affair had on the children

commit themselves to a long-term plan for recovery, honesty, and Internal (Spiritual) growth

I sincerely hope that you get through this quickly as you can process...but most of all, you must be prepared to end the marriage if you wish to save it. D or R or rugsweeping are you choices...choose what works for you.

BH 58,
WW #2 D'd after 6month EA who scammed her out of our life savings
WW #1 51 since remaired twice continues to cheat even today
WW #2 Refuses to admit she wrecked our marriage
DD adult 32
DSD adult 33
DSS adult 30

posts: 252   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2020   ·   location: Savannah, GA
id 8547003

Buffer ( member #71664) posted at 12:49 PM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020

Brother Particle

What a shit sandwich

The one thing you need is the one thing she can’t answer “Why?”

I do have a few questions just so to better understand. Did she re write the marriage? Making you out (in her mind) not to care so she could do what she did.

When you are having a open discussion with her regarding the A. Ask her to explain to you how she justified her actions and her thought processes including her emotions as the A evolved.

I know you don’t want the ins and outs of their actions but the way her mind processed this can help you understand.

Your emotional roller coaster will start the downward leg soon. Just hold on it gets bad. You sound like you are in a good place mentally. Seek legal advice for your area, cannot hurt to know your rights and responsibilities.

WW does need to tell you all who helped the A and cut them from your marriage you don’t need toxic people, they will help trigger you.

You can have all the evidence you need to prove the A, but a confession is best.

I think you said you don’t want to police her friends and actions but that can only help to build the trust back.

One day at a time



posts: 1207   ·   registered: Sep. 24th, 2019   ·   location: Australia
id 8547035

BeyondRage ( member #71328) posted at 1:15 PM on Saturday, May 30th, 2020


I don't see any valid reason for being with me other than it was a huge mistake and she's remorseful and loves me.

I hope by now you have realized that this was no mistake. A mistake is forgetting to buy Tide at the grocery store.

For one year, she made decisions constantly to lie, deceive, and disrespect you. And for her




That is no mistake. A drunken ONS is the closest thing in infidelity that even comes close to a mistake, but still isn't.

If you accept that a year was just a mistake you need a lot of help, and it doesn't matter how tech savvy you are.

Forget the tears. They mean NOTHING.

Me- 49M
WW- 48F
Kids- 23,21,20,18 all female

posts: 484   ·   registered: Aug. 19th, 2019   ·   location: Southeast USA
id 8547036
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