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Lost and emotional

Emotional74 posted 6/15/2021 11:56 AM

My husband of almost 10 years has been having an emotional A with a co-worker. It came to light because our 13yr old daughter shared with me that he overheard him early May on a call with another woman. She was certain it was another woman and he was cheating on me. After asking my daughter if I could confront him on what she thought she heard, she agreed. I did and of course, he lied to her and to me.

Fast forward to today. Her sharing led me to do the investigative work I needed to do to confirm who he was talking to as well as learn it had been something that was happening in April and ALL of May. It was definitely not just a friendship as the VAR I installed after I learned he may be cheating, gave me a bigger picture of the story. The plot thickened as more was revealed and it turns out that not only was he sneaking behind my back talking and texting this OW, he was also using drugs.

I finally confronted him this past weekend as I held off to see what further information I could gather such as was it more than an emotional affair, was he going to continue it when he knew I was on to him now, and watching his every move, etc.

The OW went as far as to send me a social media friend request 2 weeks back which I declined. Not sure if this was a way to appear innocent in her relationship with my husband or what. As time went on and I realized I had to confront him I did. He came clean on the majority of what was happening but claimed nothing happened. Since I don't have proof anything did, I really don't have a choice but to take what I know and try to move forward.

What I did do however is send her husband information to share this and I now am not sure if that was the right thing to do. I have not contacted the OW but did ask my H to do it to tell her I know and do not ever contact him again. He doesn't want to do that, says I can if I need to but I'm not sure if I should and I'm not sure if I should make him either at this point.

My emotions are all over the place and while I do think he may be telling the truth that they did not have sex, it will always be in the back of my mind that it could have happened and I will never know. At this point I've given him clear guidelines of what needs to happen and he says he is willing but in the meantime, I'm just not sure on things like do I contact the OW or do I make him OR even if me telling the OW's H was the right thing to do. I thought of it as if it were me, I would want to know.


Thumos posted 6/15/2021 12:09 PM

I don't want to add to your pain here, but you need to be prepared for the distinct possibility this was a full blown physical affair.

Adults typically don't dance around each other like junior high students. This went at least as far back as April. If there was physical proximity, then they probably had sex within a matter of weeks.

Wayward spouses typically don't "come clean" even when confronted. They continue to lie and minimize.

You can and should:

1. Ask him to write down a detailed narrative timeline of the affair. The whole truth. Everything. In detail. Many pages in length. No omissions. Part of the timeline should be disclosure on any cheating throughout your marriage. This does the following:
-It forces her to confront the ugly truth in black and white
-It puts him on record so he cannot keep futzing around and fudging the facts, or tell you "I've already told you everything" in verbal convos. A written timeline puts a stop to a lot of mind games.
-It gives you information so you can make an informed decision about your future.

2. Ask him to deliver to you all texts, social media messages with the OM. Everything. No omissions. He turns over her phone to you for retrieval. He provides immediate access to all email and social media.

3. Both you and he must get tested for STD's immediately. Don't make the mistake of having what is called "hysterical bonding" sex with him. It will open up new wounds and you're already bleeding. I speak from experience. Stay celibate for the time being.

4. Tell him the written timeline will be tested for truthfulness against a polygraph within the next two weeks. Make the appointment and tell him to get the timeline to you immediately, within two days. He can sit down in a chair and write it out. It's the least he can do.

Part of the polygraph should ask whether he's cheated other times over the course of your 10 year marriage.

5. Make an appointment now to see an attorney so you can understand the divorce process. You may or may not decide to file, but you should at least understand your options.

6. Invoke a 30-90 day separation. Don't move out of your home. Ask him to move out to give you peace and the ability to heal.

7. Expose. Expose immediately to your WH's family (although you might consider not telling your own family for the time being). This isn't to exact revenge. Very important. It's to ensure your husband doesn't spin a false narrative about why you're separating.

It also implodes the fantasy and makes your husband start dealing with reality.

You should also expose the affair to the OW's betrayed spouse.

You'd want to know if you were them. It is the ethical thing to do. I waited too long to contact the other betrayed spouse. Don't be me.

8. He should also send a clear 'no contact' message to this woman immediately and confirm it for you, authenticate it.

Take these steps quickly if you can. The faster you take them, the better.

Also try to keep the concept of forgiveness separate from any thoughts of reconciliation or divorce.

You can forgive and divorce, or forgive and stay. Forgiveness and reconciliation are not the same thing. Forgiveness is for you.

Read two short books:

1. Cheating in a Nutshell (this prepares you for the storm of emotions you're about to endure)

2. How to Help Your Spouse Heal from Your Affair (this is to help you understand what a truly remorseful wayward spouse should do)

Lastly find a betrayal trauma specialist in your geographic area. This specialty is really important for individual counseling. Don't just randomly pick an IC.

Thumos posted 6/15/2021 12:14 PM

The other thing I just caught here is you're also dealing with his drug use (addiction?)

If you're dealing with two of the "3 A's" that are marriage enders, that makes reconciliation a very tough slog indeed.

Abuse, addiction, adultery.

You've got two of three here.

EllieKMAS posted 6/15/2021 12:21 PM

Fast forward to today. Her sharing led me to do the investigative work I needed to do to confirm who he was talking to as well as learn it had been something that was happening in April and ALL of May. It was definitely not just a friendship as the VAR I installed after I learned he may be cheating, gave me a bigger picture of the story. The plot thickened as more was revealed and it turns out that not only was he sneaking behind my back talking and texting this OW, he was also using drugs.
Quite aside from the cheating, the drugs angle is really alarming. He needs to get into treatment for that asap. You can't have an active addict around your daughter.

What I did do however is send her husband information to share this and I now am not sure if that was the right thing to do.
This was absolutely the right thing to do.

I have not contacted the OW but did ask my H to do it to tell her I know and do not ever contact him again. He doesn't want to do that, says I can if I need to but I'm not sure if I should and I'm not sure if I should make him either at this point.
You should 100% insist on him sending an NC message to her that YOU get to review and watch him send. He and you should then block her on everything - phones, social media, emails, etc. If R is to have any chance, your wh must go NC forever with his AP.

The thing that is pretty universal with ws's is that they lie. Then they lie some more. Then they lie about their lies. You have absolutely no reason to believe anything he says right now, and the odds are high that he has been 'truthful' only about what he thinks you know right now. It's pretty common on SI to see BS's that think they have the whole truth only to discover LOTS more down the road.

For now, take care of you and your daughter. Eat, sleep, drink water - avoid alcohol. Exercise if you can. Get both of you into IC if possible. And your wh needs to get into IC too. Do NOT try MC until your wh has committed to and completed at least 6 months of IC - MC's at this stage often do more harm than good to the BS.

Also read up in the healing library. There's a lot of good info in there.

So sorry you had to find SI, but very glad you did. One way or the other, you will survive this!

EllieKMAS posted 6/15/2021 12:22 PM

If you're dealing with two of the "3 A's" that are marriage enders, that makes reconciliation a very tough slog indeed.

Abuse, addiction, adultery.

You've got two of three here.

Infidelity is abuse. Looks like 3 of 3 to me.

Freeme posted 6/15/2021 13:06 PM

My emotions are all over the place and while I do think he may be telling the truth that they did not have sex, it will always be in the back of my mind that it could have happened and I will never know. At this point I've given him clear guidelines of what needs to happen and he says he is willing but in the meantime, I'm just not sure on things like do I contact the OW or do I make him OR even if me telling the OW's H was the right thing to do.
Telling the OBS was the right thing to do. Now you can see how your WH responds to you telling the OBS. Does he try to protect the OW? Does he get angry at you? How does he find out about it? Via OW?
I second having him write out a timeline. I also do not believe you are getting the whole story. Have you checked his email? His text? the phone bill to find out how often they text and/or call each other? Did he delete everything? These are some major clues on how far things went. Do you have access to see how much was spent on drugs?

Is he willing to take a polygraph test to rebuild your trust?

Most likely things have gone further than just an emotional affair if he continued things after being caught the first time by his 13 year old daugher.

src9043 posted 6/15/2021 13:30 PM

Some feel that polygraphs are bogus, but I would force him to take one because of the possibility of a parking lot confession. In fact, he has to take one. He also has to go NC with the other woman. If that means changing jobs/departments, so be it. Your husband is a liar and a cheater. Think long and hard if you want to continue your marriage. Go see a counselor that specializes in infidelity. Do not rug sweep this episode and do not let your husband snow you or browbeat you into accepting this crap. Show him your fangs. Make it clear to him he is on thin ice, very thin ice.

I don't know if you are working or a stay-at-home mom, but it is essential that you focus on a/your career. Do not be a victim at the mercy of your husband. I don't know if you have young children, so that may be a problem, but you can overcome that hurdle. Becoming self-sufficient financially will provide you with future security and not force you to make poor decisions as to stay or go in a relationship.

[This message edited by src9043 at 1:38 PM, June 15th (Tuesday)]

annb posted 6/15/2021 13:32 PM

Hi, welcome to the best club no one wants to join.
So sorry you find yourself here.

Quickly, you did the right thing informing the husband of the OW. Has he responded?

More than likely there is much more than an emotional affair. Cheaters lie and lie. Then they lie some more.

Does your husband still work with this woman? He must go no contact immediately, no calls, texts, conversations, meetings, emails, no contact ever again. If he is still working with her, there's a great chance the affair will not end.

HalfTime2017 posted 6/15/2021 13:47 PM

Emotional74-

Hell no your husband needs to send that note to her and tell her that she cannot in anyway contact him, you or anyone else in your family. Again "HIM", not you. If he doesnt want to do that, you walk. Period.

You're going to get a lot of advice on the board, and its all going to sound a lot alike. You have to hold your husband's feet to the fire. If he doesnt agree, you don't have a marriage or husband worth keeping. He no longer gets to dictate what he wants to do with this woman, he got caught cheating and you have to take the reigns.

On the OW's husband, you have to make sure that the information you sent actually got to him. Sometimes they will warn each other and if you sent an email, it could have been deleted by the OW before her husband even got to it. The reason you want him to know is b/c he will help you monitor his own wife, and you both coordinate efforts to help end this affair. It sounds like you're going to try to make the marriage work. IF you are so quick to just give your husband R, he is going to think that you're always going to be there. Make sure your Husband knows that you will end this marriage if he doesnt get his head out of his ass pronto.

Buffer posted 6/15/2021 15:09 PM

Donít take anything he says as true. Cheaters lie, they lie a lot to control the fall out.
You have every right to demand NC or he is out! And D is on the cards.
Expose to all, is she a co worker? Keep in contact with the OBS. Let your WH know you are continuing to communicate with him about your wayward actions.
Hug 🤗 your daughter as she is a brave child for telling you of this. This would have been very confronting for her.
Seek legal advice as you need to know your rights as well as his responsibilities if you D.
You canít nice him away from his OW.
One day at a time.

[This message edited by Buffer at 3:10 PM, June 15th (Tuesday)]

This0is0Fine posted 6/15/2021 16:05 PM

Emotional74,

I was in a very similar position to you when I found out about my fWW's EA.

Here's what I can tell you. If you a feeling resistance from your WH, you are probably headed in the right direction. Every step you take that you think feels like a little too much, is going to be the step that you most appreciate taking in the future. Whether that is the VAR, telling the OBS (way to go!), or in the near future making him send the NC letter to her in front of you stating something along the lines of "I'm recommitting to my marriage, and our relationship was wrong. You cannot possibly enrich the relationship I have with my wife. For that reason, I'm asking you never contact me again for any reason."

Full transparency. He should submit all his electronic devices for backup, give you his passwords, track his location, and do what he can to reveal all communication he had with his AP.

He needs to find a new job ASAP. It took my fWW MONTHS to just flip the switch on her linkedin to "open to new opportunities". Don't let him drag his feet on this. Or do, and suffer like me. I suffered. Eventually we did reach a good place and R. But guess what, she has a new job.

Depending on the situation (subordinate/superior), you could even call HR about it.

Get the book "Not Just Friends" by Shirley Glass and "How to Help Your Spouse Heal from Your Affair" by Linda MacDonald. These two books are the best out there, IMO. You can both read those books and learn a lot.

DON'T let your husband minimize this as NOT and A. It was.

As to the "was it a PA question", I think you need *something* whether that is a polygraph, or other confirmatory method to put your mind at ease. You can never be 100% certain, but the extra info will put your mind at ease.

Ariopolis posted 6/15/2021 22:33 PM

an emotional A with a co-worker.

I am so sorry this happened. My H had several COW affairs too, although his were all PA.


A good book to read is Not Just Friends by Shirley Glass.

She discusses how these affairs start. She mentions how "the transition from friendship to affair is barely perceptible-- to both participants and observers. The boundaries shift slowly."

I think that's why EAs are so dangerous. The partners already have an emotional connection. By the time they suspect they may be doing something wrong, they are already in too deep.

I don't know if your H has crossed over to a PA but another thing she says is that it is a bigger leap to that first kiss than it is from kissing to sexual intercourse.

That's why I would think if your H ever tells you they only kissed once, they have probably been physically intimate.

Please don't contact the OW. She will only lie to you. They will have come up with a plan should you ever find out and they will have coordinated their stories.

If you do talk to her, you will give her a golden opportunity to prove her loyalty to your H. She might say what a honest, trustworthy man your H is and he would never do such a thing.

Translated, she just said she knows your H better than you do and you just don't appreciate what a fine man he is and by the way, what kind of a termagant would call an innocent coworker and slander her own innocent husband.

OR, she may tell you it's best that you finally know and your H and she are very much in love and he buys her gifts and spends all this time with her instead of you.

Translated, she hates you because you are the obstacle preventing her boyfriend from getting a divorce and now since you know, please D him because he told her he loved you and he was never going to leave you.

The OW can say anything and it is only designed to hurt you and make herself the better person. You likely won't get much truth out of her.

I hope you follow up with the OBS. If you don't hear from him, ESPECIALLY if your H does not bring it up to you, then I'd bet he never saw your message.

If OBS saw your message and brought it up to his wife, the OW, you can bet she'd turn around and complain to your H about what you did. I'm sure it would be something along the line of "How dare your wife interfere in MY marriage."

Yes, that's how cheaters roll. How dare you interfere in her marriage and try to come between their (your H and her) relationship.

You will get nothing but lies from a cheater.

I also do not recommend physical separation. Once the H moves out, many times it's like permission to act single again.

If you could get WH into rehab, that would be wonderful.

It's tough. Maybe they are only emotionally involved and one or both of them has sense enough to keep the brakes on.

I wonder what your daughter overheard that made her think he was cheating What an awful thing to have happen to an innocent young girl.

What an awful thing to have happen to you. I hope things work out for you.

[This message edited by Ariopolis at 10:27 AM, June 16th (Wednesday)]

Emotional74 posted 6/16/2021 10:29 AM

Thank you all for the feedback. To answer some of the questions that have come up.

Yes..I have gained access to all accounts and phone. I did not go through the effort to try to recover all the deleted text as I felt like that would make everything I already knew to be true much worse. Is it really important that I try to use a tool to recover the text if my H has admitted that he was inappropriate with her as she was with him?

No..They do not work together anymore. My H still works there but she decided to take time off to be a stay-at-home mom with her 10 month old. SMH...

Yes, the OBS did respond to my email. He asked me to call if I would so I immediately called him but it was not at all what I would have expected.

I started off by saying I hated to have to send that but thought he should know. I explained that my H admitted to having an inappropriate text and calls with his W. He proceeded to tell me that she has cheated on him before with someone also from the same workplace and it was a PA. They had been to counseling and he openly shared she had been abused and was attention-seeking, especially with older men. My H is much older than the OW. He went into what felt like an interrogation mode, wanting me to tell him exactly what I know, heard, if I had any proof I could send or share with him, asking how I know and did I hire a PI, etc. It started to sound like he already knew about this so I asked if he already knew and he explained that no, he had talked to his W once he read the email. It sounded as if she said it was friendship and work-related communications mostly but she did like his attention. I'm not sure if the tone and interrogation style of questioning was to see if she was being truthful OR if he was worried about what I did have and how I could use it if I was not a nice person, but either way, he wanted me to give him some real proof. I in turn got a bit defensive to say I would not be revealing all my sources and that while aside from the phone records I didn't have anything I could send him. I explained I heard conversations (one side only) but I know for sure the OW wasn't offended and didn't tell my H to never call her again, it was reciprocated and while it may have been limited to an EA, I know for certain if it continued, it would have gone further if it didn't already. I explained all he had to do was look at his call/text logs and he would know it was far more than a friendship as friends don't text thousands of texts in a month. He said he didn't even know how to get to his logs but never asked me to send mine.

He then realized he had offended me or put me on the defense and said he didn't mean to upset me but he was wanting to know what I had I could share. I told him I didn't have anything I could send him and that he could either believe me or not and he ended up saying he did believe me. He ended the conversation saying he would pray for me and my H. (Not expected at all) and if I needed or wanted to talk to him again I could call any time. At this point, I don't see a need to talk to him again but if I were to pull text and could share, should I?

As for R, I'm open to it if my H will do all of what I've asked. It started off rocky with him not wanting to contact the OW to tell her I know and to never contact him again but after talking with the OBS, I don't know that I still need him to do this as part of the plan. What I am doing however is asking that he seek counseling for addiction and in general.

Again, I appreciate all the help and feedback on how to help me move forward.

scaredwoman posted 6/16/2021 12:25 PM

Is it really important that I try to use a tool to recover the text if my H has admitted that he was inappropriate with her as she was with him?

I think it is because there is a good chance that he hasn't admitted to everything, especially if he does not want to cut ties with the OW.

He is the one who needs to tell her to leave him alone. This is his responsibility and in order to move forward you need to know that he is serious about letting her go.

As for the OBS's reaction, he's been hurt before and is in a stage where he is questioning everything his wife is doing. I don't blame him at all for asking for more from you; it had nothing to do with you but with his own needs for his marriage.

[This message edited by scaredwoman at 12:26 PM, June 16th (Wednesday)]

Buster123 posted 6/16/2021 12:32 PM

It started off rocky with him not wanting to contact the OW to tell her I know and to never contact him again but after talking with the OBS, I don't know that I still need him to do this as part of the plan.
Yes you do, big time, make sure heīs not prepared and tell him heīs got 10 seconds to do it right in front of you, a short to the point (no sweet goodbyes), make sure you watch him hit "send" and then have him block her.

Marz posted 6/16/2021 15:50 PM

It takes 2 for a marriage to work. His APís husband is a doormat. Donít waste any more time on him.

Good job on informing him though.

Get strong and stay there. I think youíre going to need it.

Marz posted 6/16/2021 15:52 PM

Iíd recover the texts. You need to know what youíre dealing with. Most want to believe itís an EA but itís often a PA.

BellaLee posted 6/17/2021 11:18 AM

Hi @Emotional74 I'm so sorry you're having to deal with this painful situation in your marriage.
I can understand why you're emotions is all over the place and my heart goes out to you.
From my own experience, it's so important not to rug sweep what has happened. It's good that you have asked him to seek counseling for his addiction and really this is a very important place to start. I also think you should ensure that he sends a message to the OW saying he will no longer be contacting her as he needs to work on himself and his marriage. Your husband's willingness to do this shows his commitment to your relationship even if he says there was no PA involved.

In the meantime I encourage you to keep the lines of communication open with your H and this might be a good time to talk about any issues you might be having in your relationship and why he felt the need to start this inappropriate relationship with the OW. I know it might be hard to do but I think it will be helpful for your R journey.

Try and stay strong and remember that you are worthy of love that can be trusted.

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