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Complicated relationship

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BluerThanBlue ( member #74855) posted at 4:57 PM on Saturday, November 6th, 2021

If you couldn’t stop him from having an affair with another woman, what makes you think you can stop him from not using a condom?

OW isn’t agreeing to concubinage and doesn’t have 4 kids— none of whom live with her!— because she’s an ethical and responsible person who is diligent about birth control and concerned for the sexual health and emotional health of herself or others. If she was, she wouldn’t be fucking your husband in the first place.

Given enough time, your husband is likely to become her next baby daddy… then you will have to deal with messy, complicated issues that come along with that and fact that even more time and resources that should be dedicated to your family will be going to her.

Hell, he could decide to pick up and leave for her or anyone else at any point in time for any reason. If he has already given himself license to cheat, why do you think leaving you because he found someone better is so far out of the question?

BW, age 40
Divorced WH in 2015; now happily remarried to a great guy

I edit my comments a lot for spelling, grammar, typos, etc.

posts: 603   ·   registered: Jul. 13th, 2020
id 8697242
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Walkthestorm ( member #72157) posted at 5:30 PM on Saturday, November 6th, 2021

OP your husband has already crossed boundries. The condom thing... Have you seen him have them around at any point?

Please consider what your husband will do when a time comes when she will not accept to be his side peace? Will you allow your husband to travel to visit her every other weekend? What if he wants to pay for her flights/hotels and for her kids to visit him? Will you allow your kids to meet this woman? What would you tell them about who this woman is to their dad? Think about if your daughter ever has the misfortune to walk in your shoes, what would you advise her to do? Stand up for herself or hope that her husband one day decides to stop the emotional abuse?

You need to make a plan and set clear boundries about what you want other than wanting your marriage back. What are you willing to accept and tolerate in the name of love?

posts: 89   ·   registered: Nov. 26th, 2019
id 8697247
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ChamomileTea ( Guide #53574) posted at 8:57 PM on Saturday, November 6th, 2021

I was a terrible person and what I did to him was awful.

Really? But he's a great person and what he's doing to you is okay???

Someone said they had a "gut feeling" that your WH would never have cheated unless you had done it first, but you know what?... everything I know after 17 years of studying the subject of infidelity tells me that he would have cheated eventually no matter WHAT you had done. This is demonstrated by the FACT that he's married to you and fucking another woman. For those of us who honor FIDELITY among our core values, this isn't possible. We might have shot our mouths off on dday about how we would get even, but when it came right down to it, we weren't able to dismiss our internal beliefs. A person who knows in his heart and in his mind that cheating is always wrong will never cheat. A person who honors his word will not break it. Your WH doesn't care about Fidelity as a core value. He's got a "but..." in there. ie. "He believes in Fidelity, but... not if his wife doesn't." Sounds very cheeky, very right. Clever. Fair even. rolleyes

The fact is though, that we true believers don't have a "but..." in any of our core values. We have a "so...". ie. "I believe in fidelity... so I have created boundaries in my behavior which protect my belief system."

Bottom line.. if you have a "but..." in your value system, it means you don't really honor your stated values. It's in your WH's character to cheat, just as it was in yours. He has demonstrated the truth of that because he's got a "but..." in there. Fucking other women while married is okay in his book, just so long as he's rubbing it in his wife's face after her adultery. You say he's a nice guy? Well, that doesn't sound very nice, does it?

If what you did was awful and made you a terrible person, how is what he's doing any better? He's got no moral high ground. If he did, he would be honoring the things he claimed to believe in. If he did, he would have divorced you or forgiven you, but he would NOT have broken his own vows. This isn't a kneejerk reaction where your WH hasn't put any thought into it. It's FIVE YEARS later. That means, for the past five years, this guy has been acting like his values system was somehow superior to yours, when all along, he's got no problem with married people fucking APs and no problem with APs who will fuck married people.

So, after everything that has happened, what is YOUR values system now? If fidelity something you believe that married people should honor and build boundaries around? Is it okay for people to have a "but..." in their core belief of Fidelity? You've had some really hard lessons. Have you learned anything from them? If so, what? What do you stand for? What.. do you stand for? shocked

ETA:

...he's got no problem with married people fucking APs and no problem with APs who will fuck married people.

Please read that part again. Your WH is claiming to be "in love" with someone who has no problem fucking a married guy. How is she in any way different than your former AP, someone for which he probably holds a really strong negative view. But the OW is a-okay, right? Why? She's a person whose character ALLOWS for fucking married men. She's a person who doesn't care about breaking up a family. What makes her "lovable" and your AP a POS? Your WH is a hypocrite.

[This message edited by ChamomileTea at 9:08 PM, Saturday, November 6th]

BW: 2004(online EAs), 2014 (multiple PAs)Married 38 years; in R with fWH for 7

{edited for typos.. again}

posts: 4886   ·   registered: Jun. 8th, 2016   ·   location: U.S.
id 8697277
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jb3199 ( member #27673) posted at 11:20 PM on Saturday, November 6th, 2021

@Cooley2here do you think we can work this out? Is it possible to build something new and better.

When? Where? At what cost?

Right now, the answer is an obvious 'No'. He is in an active affair, and unless that is your preferred cup of tea, you are simply a 3rd wheel. So----are you willing to wait forever for him to possibly come around? If not forever, then how long? I have to believe that deep down, you know that your tolerance of his behavior only enables it further. That given the current dynamic, he is more than likely to make this the new status quo....with no intention to change.

I really wish that you could take the others' posts to heart. Hope can be as destructive as it can be elating. Maybe even worse. There is one thing that I always try to tell the newly betrayed members here--deal with the person who is standing in front of you TODAY. Not the great, loving partner from times past. We are a compilation over time. Just because you were a poor partner years, does not make you a bad partner today. But looking back, would it have been appropriate when you were in your affairs, for your husband to just sit back and wait....in the hopes that you come around? Do you agree with your prior behaviors today? If not, why on Earth should you accept his?

This isn't about him. This is about you. Your character; your integrity; your self-respect. Never accept poor behavior from someone whether it is your child, a stranger, or your partner. Doing so shows that that you are okay with being 'less-than', or inferior to others. YOU AREN'T. Show them that you are not.

But please stop with the hope. It is wishful thinking. It is refusing to deal with the reality that is all around you. This doesn't mean that your marriage has no chance. It means that your character and self respect are more important than trying to save it.

You want the best chance of him returning to your marriage? Show him that you are not a consolation prize. Show him that your values are more important than anything else. Because in reality, isn't that true?

BH-50s
WW-50s
2 boys
Married 28yrs.(together over 30yrs.)

All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
D-Day(s): Enough
Accepting that I can/may end this marriage 7/2/14

posts: 3898   ·   registered: Feb. 21st, 2010   ·   location: northeast
id 8697299
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 1:20 AM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

This whole thread is so sad, and some of the comments you are getting are so wrong.

You hurt him. You have remorse. You have worked to fix it. It's called owning your shit.

He is hurting you. He has no remorse. He is not fixing it. He is not owning his shit.

This horse crap a few people are feeding you about what "a man feels" are just sexist dribble giving you false guilt that continues your marital martyrdom. It's five years later. If people want to leave, they should leave. Being a victim of infidelity does not give you license to abuse.

This ends when you say it ends. If your husband wanted to live without you, he would avoid having sex, food, and entertainment with you. This is no different than any other affair. This b@tch has a halo over her head because her stupid, boring, avoidant, absentee mother life is not his full-time "Here is my wonderful wife!" gig. The shine will disappear immediately when his whole life revolves around her WAY more damaged choices than yours. She is a piece of low lying fruit that he absolutely does not want. They never do!!!!!! I can't believe people aren't telling you that.

You know when he'll start valuing you again? When you start valuing yourself.

Best wishes.
Stop martyring yourself. Enough.

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5349   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8697313
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Sofarsogood ( member #71991) posted at 1:51 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

So, maybe you should look at this as the playing table being level? He stated the only difference between you and the other woman is that you have hurt him. Now he has hurt you. Look at it this way.. You love him and want him to be happy due to all the guilt you feel from your past indiscretion. If that is with the ow, so be it. Just tell him you have grown as a person, and you are ready for a safe, committed, monogamous relationship. If he finds he can't achieve that with you, you shouldn't keep trying. You may still love him, but doing the "pick me" dance just assures him that he can enjoy both of you without any repercussions. Time to worry about yourself.

posts: 298   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8697347
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 6:07 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

Be objective for a minute:

Do you think your WH wants to permanently keep a bad mother who ignores her kids, a woman who is willing to have sex with another woman's husband, a woman who accepts sloppy seconds or whatever other crumbs she can get???? She "hasn't hurt him"? Lol! But she has hurt everyone else, and he knows that! He is lying to you and worse, lying to himself, pretending that this woman has anything quality to love. It's affair fog, ego fog, fantasy fog, skittle belching unicorn fog! He may be a KISA, but she is a broken woman and he does not actually want her. He's in love with the ego boost. That's it.

Your abandonment issues have you focused on the pain of feeling unlovable rather than the truth of his current unworthiness. People do not respect people unless they respect themselves.

Like every single other cheater here, this will not end until you force it, until you force him to wake up from the fantasy of having two women. His ego is huge right now--two women are having Pick Me! sex with him on a daily basis. He is living a fantasy, and you are allowing him to believe this fantasy--the fantasy that he is going to be viewed as an upstanding husband and father while he ruins everyone's life. Nope, he won't be seen that way. The fantasy that everyone will love and accept this interloper OW who is living as a side piece. No, she won't be accepted. So force him to wake up and try to make a life with this damaged side piece. I am laughing my butt off imagining him trying to be happy with her broken life, trying to imagine him trusting her!!!! You think he would knowingly trust someone like her???? Never.

End the fantasy.

Let the truth live.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 6:11 PM, Sunday, November 7th]

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5349   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8697388
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Dude67 ( member #75700) posted at 6:29 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

One need not present a one size fits all solution to a problem, and in particular this problem.

OP’s main priority is to save her marriage. This is her feeling and belief, snd she owns it. I’m not sure why it’s appropriate for others to try to invalidate her feelings snd desires snd at the same time convince her that her husbands A, as a reaction to her A, is abuse and snd that his feelings are invalid. OP has the agency to believe snd act as she sees fit.

This is what I think OP believes is happening snd why she is hanging in there right now. She believes her husbands A is a direct result of her A, snd how she treated her husband during and after. I think she’s hoping that his current A, in his mind, will level the playing field, snd allow him to fully return to the marriage.

I believe this is what OP is thinking and hoping for. We can all agree that what her husband is doing is wrong. I personally don’t condone what he’s doing However, what if she takes everyone’s advice, puts her foot down, and her husband moves to D immediately, as he stated will happen. Is this what OP wants? No. Or, what if she rides this out for a bit and her husband returns to the marriage? Is this what OP wants? Yes.

It’s OPs decision to make.

posts: 210   ·   registered: Oct. 21st, 2020
id 8697390
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 8:11 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

OP’s main priority is to save her marriage.

You have to let go of the outcome. We all do. There is no "saving the marriage" in infidelity, only saving your own dignity. Everyone comes here wanting that recipe, but it does not exist. It. Does. Not. Exist.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 8:15 PM, Sunday, November 7th]

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5349   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8697398
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BraveSirRobin ( Guide #69242) posted at 8:15 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

I’m not sure why it’s appropriate for others to try to invalidate her feelings snd desires snd at the same time convince her that her husbands A, as a reaction to her A, is abuse and snd that his feelings are invalid. OP has the agency to believe snd act as she sees fit.

Will you say the same to the next male madhatter whose wife is openly screwing another man? Will you defend the husband's right to accept his WW's feelings as valid and support him gritting his teeth until she either gets bored with the other penis or files for D? Will you tell other men who advise against it that their comments are inappropriate, and that he has the agency to act as he sees fit?

I'll wait with interest to find out.

WW/BW 50s (Me)
BH/WH 50s (TimeSpiral)

posts: 2379   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8697399
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 8:30 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

I’m not sure why it’s appropriate for others to try to invalidate her feelings snd desires snd at the same time convince her that her husbands A, as a reaction to her A, is abuse and snd that his feelings are invalid.

Ohhhh, the little shmoopie's feelings have been invalidated? He's not allowed to feel better about himself by shopping his penis all around town? I mean, validation is very important in this life, and outside validation is best of all, right? Because he's hurting. So a spouse just needs to understand.


Sure, ok.
Totally what SI stands for.

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5349   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8697402
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 keljpvs (original poster member #79553) posted at 10:23 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

@Dude67 you hit the nail on the head. I know he says he loves her and all that but he is still spending time with me and his kids (much more so than with her) and yea, I’m hoping something in him will wake up and come back to me. I’m hoping that MC will help make that happen. I know you all want me to make a snap decision and trust me, that would be less painful than the tortured heart I have right now but that doesn’t serve any purpose.

I have to think about my children and the fact that even though I have a good job I cannot afford a divorce and to live alone. Even if this ends up a long term situation it’s still better than me and the kids on the street and losing the only home they have ever known. I can’t imagine he would let that happen but those worries do enter my mind. But that is not my main purpose for hanging in there. It’s my love for him.

[This message restored by Webmaster at 4:10 PM, Monday, December 6th]

[This message edited by keljpvs at 7:14 PM, Friday, December 3rd]

posts: 58   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2021   ·   location: Fredericksburg,VA
id 8697421
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Sofarsogood ( member #71991) posted at 11:35 PM on Sunday, November 7th, 2021

Ok then. From the sounds of it you have your mind made up on how you you want to proceed. Good luck with that and let us know how things turn out.

posts: 298   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8697431
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Dude67 ( member #75700) posted at 12:31 AM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

You all are missing the point. It’s what OP wants to do. You’ve all been trying to talk her out of a decision she already made. She already let go of the outcome of the M - that’s why she’s letting it ride and seeing where things go.

The SI prescription that an RA/mad hatter situation is the wrong one in ALL situations is rigid doctrinaire. There isn’t one situation in the world where there is only one solution to a problem. There are situations where the solution is 95 percent effective snd accepted, yet what about the five percent? This is one of those situations in OPs mind.

OP doesn’t want to get divorced. Her husband has said he will unequivocally divorce her if she puts her foot down. OP takes your advice, husband divorces her, and the only people that feel vindicated are those here that pushed her to that end.

OP then gets handed a big fat divorce, the one outcome she doesn’t want. Need to listen to her. If there’s a five percent chance her husband will return to the marriage, then to OP, that’s the road she’s willing to take.

posts: 210   ·   registered: Oct. 21st, 2020
id 8697436
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Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 12:54 AM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

This is abuse. Period.
Keljpvs – you came to this site looking for advice. There is a near-unanimous consensus here amongst very experienced posters that:
a)Although your past affair definitely damaged the marriage it does not justify your husband having an affair.
b)His present actions are abusive.
c)It’s up to you to decide your next steps.

Now – if your decision is to accept your husband is having an active and flagrant affair… well… why are you posting here? Maybe because you aren’t happy with that decision? And if your husband carries on with actions that make you unhappy – isn’t that a definition of abuse?

Or are you fine with the situation? If so, then what is it you want from this site?


The SI prescription that an RA/mad hatter situation is the wrong one in ALL situations is rigid doctrinaire.

Is it a SI prescription? Anything in our code of ethics or behaviors that says this is a SI prescription? I do admit I haven’t seen a single person of note ever suggest RA’s are sensible or a good tool to reconcile a marriage, but I don’t think it’s "rigid doctrine". Not any more than telling someone that jumping off a tall building will help them fly. Its more common sense than doctrine.

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

posts: 10172   ·   registered: Sep. 29th, 2005
id 8697440
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 1:23 AM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

I want to be sure you understand that nobody is saying you have to be hateful or even angry. What we're saying is that the more you allow, the more he will take advantage. Cheating is a taker's game. Have you read any threads here on SI? Your situation is not unique. At all.

Good luck. I hope you can learn to accept your role in his life because if the MC pushes him to change, he will quit the MC, not the side piece. You are hoping that the MC will straighten him out, and that's not what happens in MC. You can find a minimum of 10 recent threads where BS hoped for the same thing. Do some reading here. You will learn a lot about how cheaters behave, and they typically use MC to appease the BS. But MC seldom ever leads to change, not from all the stories I've read here.

Good luck.
I will leave you to your choices. May you find peace.

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5349   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8697444
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 1:28 AM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

T/J

Its more common sense than doctrine.

Mods have gotten involved and shut down RA promotion in threads. They make statements that say, "SI does not condone cheating for any reason." I know of at least one poster who either left or was terminated for continually bragging of his ongoing RA, but this was a couple years ago.

End T/J

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5349   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8697446
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 1:49 AM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

And one more thing: you may not see him as a cheater, but unless he has told all your relatives and friends what he is doing, total transparency, then he IS a lying, pretending, deceptive cheater. Oh, he's telling you what he's doing--to hurt you, punish you, and because he has emotionally manipulated you through codependency or guilt or whatever. He clearly feels no threat to his daily living in telling you. But has he told everyone else what he is doing? If so, ok. Then I would call him a Hot Mess but not a cheater. If only you know and that's your kind of unspoken agreement, then he is is cheating everyone you both know out of the truth. He is portraying himself as a good husband, father, and human being, and it's a lie.

Do you have any type of support system? Family? Close friends? You need support to deal with something as messed up as this. Please reach out for some. Ok, now this time I am really leaving you alone. Lol. I do absolutely wish you the best though. smile

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 1:51 AM, Monday, November 8th]

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5349   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8697447
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ChamomileTea ( Guide #53574) posted at 4:33 AM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

I can't count the number of women who have come through here looking for some magic cure to stop their WH's wandering dick and too paralyzed with fear to actually stand up to him. And you know what happens? ...he leaves anyway. Instead of yanking the rug out from under him, making him do the math on child support, alimony, and what the fuck his mother is going to say when she finds out... he EASES his way out of the marriage at his own pace and comfort. He becomes accustomed to doing whatever (and whoever) he wants. By the time the BW gives up and it's become clear to everyone that the marriage is over, he no longer gives a crap what other people say... and he's got lawyers to try and make sure he gets out with as much as he can, including at least 50% custody of the kids, and not because he wants the kids, but because he REALLY doesn't want to pay child support. rolleyes

I think OwningItNow is right. I very much doubt that your WH is going to be willing to dump his own children just to raise the OW's four instead. I think the odds are pretty good that if you laid down the law, he'd cave. No one can ever be sure, of course, but what you can be sure of now is that you are a second-class citizen within your own marriage and if he's not out with this OW, chances are good he'll be gone with the next one. Why?.. because he doesn't RESPECT you.

I feel so badly for you, really I do. What he's doing is NOT love, and no one deserves to be treated with this kind of ugly disrespect. Sure, every day he claims to love you. Every day he whispers weasel words into your ear because for the cheap cost of those whispered nothings, he gets a wife appliance -and- a side piece, both putting out and costing him nothing. barf And here you are, a former wayward whose fear, guilt, and shame have stifled you completely so you don't feel like you can fight back. Timidity is not a good look though. Self-confidence, OTOH, looks good on everyone.


The only advice I have left for you is to start putting your ducks in a row. Start saving money. Put it someplace where your WH doesn't know about it and where he can't get to it. Start thinking about whether you need to get some job training to increase your income or what you need to do in order to support yourself and your kids. Build up a support network with friends and family so that when the shit finally does hit the fan, you've got people to help you. DO NOT stay isolated with this man. You're going to need people. Remember always that words are cheap, hell... they're free. It's ACTIONS that count. Right now, you feel like you are trapped. Use your time to BUILD YOUR RESOURCES so that eventually you can stand up for yourself because eventually.. you will have to.

I'm sorry this happened to you. sad

BW: 2004(online EAs), 2014 (multiple PAs)Married 38 years; in R with fWH for 7

{edited for typos.. again}

posts: 4886   ·   registered: Jun. 8th, 2016   ·   location: U.S.
id 8697473
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 keljpvs (original poster member #79553) posted at 2:54 PM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

@OwningItNow yes some people know. Not everyone in the world since we are keeping it from the kids.

I don’t have a support system. No family (he has none and I have a sister I’m not close to and my mom who’s in a nursing home so neither can help me). I wish his mom was alive. I have a couple friends I’m reconnecting with now just for support but that’s it. No one to help financially if things go bad or anything like that. I don’t think it would come to that since he is still being very caring toward me and the kids. I really don’t think all hope is gone. I’m sorry if I angered anyone. I was hoping there would be more support for this type of situation and wondered how other women got through the mental anguish part while trying to save something they love. All of you have every right to feel the way you do. This is just how I feel the best way is for us. At least I will never be able to say I didn’t give it my best shot.

[This message restored by Webmaster at 4:10 PM, Monday, December 6th]

[This message edited by keljpvs at 7:15 PM, Friday, December 3rd]

posts: 58   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2021   ·   location: Fredericksburg,VA
id 8697515
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