Newest Member: loyaltylost

Just Found Out :
Waiting too long to confront has it's own set of problems and being triggered is just one.

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 Gentleman1201 (original poster new member #79567) posted at 5:44 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

My wife's affair lasted from 2000-2005. I knew when she had met the guy online and was just chatting with him. In 2001 I got suspicious and I put a tape recorder on our house phone and I put a KEYLOGGER on our only computer. I soon realized their relationship had grown a lot but it was still an emotional affair. He lives about 3 hours away but on several occasions they discussed meeting behind my back but it never materialized. As I read her emails on her secret email account and listened to the tapes of them talking and phone sex it just ate at my heart. I knew they emailed on OUR account but all of that was very tame compared to the secret account. Whenever I told her she needed to give her relationship with him some space she always said he was an important ear to listen to her. I should have insisted but I wanted her to walk away from him because she lost interest and not because I said so. In 2004 she actually asked me if she could meet with him as he was coming to a conference about 45 miles from our house. She promised it would be a public meeting. I thought that if she met him face to face she may become disenchanted. When she got home from the meeting she said they kissed a couple of times briefly but that was it. I was not sure if I believed her. About 6 months later they arranged a secret meeting about an hour from our house. I went to that meeting intending to confront them both. I saw them walking down a street and then go to the hotel where he was staying but I lost my nerve and never let her know I had seen them or knew about the meeting. In the emails that followed that meeting it seemed they did not have sex. In about 3 months they seemed to mutually decided they should end contact and the secret emails and phone calls stopped. Her last words to him were that she would always have feelings for him.

She has never found out that I have copies of all the sexy secret emails or tapes of their phone calls with phone sex and discussions of plans to secretly meet but never materialized. I did get to hear her tell him every flaw she thinks I have. He seemed to dig for those tidbits and try to use them to tell her how bad I am.
In the last 2 months I have been triggered and while I no longer use the keylogger or the phone tap, I sometimes suspect she has tried to contact him. Odd thing is I guess I have fallen out of love with her and I sort of don't care. If she ask to go spend the weekend with him I would be fine with it. Our sex life has dwindled to the very rare occasion which I tell her is due to ED. I think I just don't want to be physical with her.

Looking back I have wondered what would have happened if I confronted her with the emails and phone tapes. I worried at the time it might bring it to a head and we could divorce with our kids due to graduate high school in 2007. I wanted them to graduate from a intact home. We weren't fighting so the kids had no idea. As time went on it seemed like there was one thing after another to cause me to put this off. Now 16 years since they seemed to break contact I am left still wondering if there was more to their meetings then I knew or if she still has contact sometimes.

For those that are just starting this road, the choice of when or if to confront is difficult and can have long ranging consequences. I am 16 years out and still don't know if I made the right choice for myself. I guess it was the right choice for our kids.

I write this for others so that if you are in a situation with any of these details, just know that while there are good reasons not to confront, it will come back to bite you later. For me I will leave things in limbo as they have been since 2005.

posts: 3   ·   registered: Nov. 5th, 2021   ·   location: Virginia
id 8699088
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jb3199 ( member #27673) posted at 6:18 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

It's a sad story, Gent. Just a couple of questions:

1. How did you feel right after the kids graduated? Were you thinking divorce back then?

2. Do you even want to improve your current marriage? Do you want to end it?

There's still advice to be given, if you want it. I'm not sure if this is just a cautionary tale, or if you are looking for something.

I'm sorry about your story. It seems like you fell on your sword for your children. But I'm guessing, if you look deeper, and are brutally honest with yourself, there is more to your choices.

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: 3855   ·   registered: Feb. 21st, 2010   ·   location: northeast
id 8699096
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ShutterHappy ( member #64318) posted at 6:23 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

Gentleman1201 ,

Don’t beat yourself about what you did wrong, or the fact that you handled your WW infidelity wrong.

The important part is to learn from your mistakes and adapt.

So what is your plan forward? You are still living in Infidelity and you need to heal. Are you planning on D your WW?

Me: BH
Divorced, remarried.
I plan on living forever. So far so good

posts: 1477   ·   registered: Jun. 30th, 2018   ·   location: In my house
id 8699098
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asc1226 ( member #75363) posted at 6:26 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

It’s never too late to demand accountability and the marriage you deserve or to move on.

I make edits, words is hard

posts: 391   ·   registered: Sep. 7th, 2020
id 8699099
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asc1226 ( member #75363) posted at 6:26 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

Huh, first double post.

[This message edited by asc1226 at 12:27 PM, November 18th (Thursday)]

I make edits, words is hard

posts: 391   ·   registered: Sep. 7th, 2020
id 8699100
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tushnurse ( member #21101) posted at 9:25 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

Life is far too short to spend it in apathy and with a partner that doesn't make you happy.
Your situation is extremely sad, and I hope you find the strength to walk away.
Living with a partner you don't love is not a happy way to live.

Me: FBS
Him: FWS
Kids: 21 &23
Married for 28 years now, was 16 at the time.
D-Day Sept 26 2008
R'd in about 2 years. Old Vet now.

posts: 19030   ·   registered: Oct. 1st, 2008   ·   location: St. Louis
id 8699123
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ChamomileTea ( member #53574) posted at 10:34 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

It's not necessary to prove grounds in most jurisdictions these days if you want a divorce. So, there's that. If you're unhappy, you can see an attorney and file. You never have to admit what you know.

Personally, I'm all about honesty. That said, I don't even know HOW you'd go about admitting that you knew for sixteen years. Maybe the thing to do would be to start with baby steps, like seeing a therapist first. That way, you'll have established some IRL support if things go sideways. Of course, you can always go on like you have been, but there continues to be this big secret between you that could possibly be uncovered any time. Things have a way of getting out. She might find the proof you kept. You could blurt it out when you're having your next colonoscopy, right? Anything can happen.

posts: 4680   ·   registered: Jun. 8th, 2016
id 8699138
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Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 10:55 PM on Thursday, November 18th, 2021

All of it is horrible but the fact that you know she badmouthed you is the pits. I don’t think I could forgive that although according to many posters it is par for the course.

I am with the others. Can you go for the rest of your life this way?

To thine own self be true. Shakespeare

posts: 3003   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8699141
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Marz ( member #60895) posted at 12:32 AM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

If they physically met up it was a sexual affair. You don’t go to a hotel room to watch tv. Admitted kissing = sex. From what I’ve seen.

It’s seems you still you want to live in denial.

I don’t see what being a martyr gets you.

If this is how you want to live your life that is up to you.

posts: 6791   ·   registered: Oct. 3rd, 2017
id 8699165
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survrus ( member #67698) posted at 2:56 AM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

Gentleman,

I suggest you present your evidence to the OM wife, she also has a right to know and make a decision in her life based on truth. Please do his wife the kindness so many turn away from doing.

I am curious about how your WW treated you through the years after the affair ended, did she treat you like a 2nd choice, at least in terms of romance and sex. I don't think my wife ever recovered from her affair and it's been 30+ years. The fantasy of the one who got away is long lasting it seems.

posts: 1073   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2018   ·   location: USA
id 8699179
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SnowToArmPits ( member #50943) posted at 10:24 AM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

She has never found out that I have copies of all the sexy secret emails or tapes of their phone calls with phone sex and discussions of plans to secretly meet but never materialized. I did get to hear her tell him every flaw she thinks I have. He seemed to dig for those tidbits and try to use them to tell her how bad I am.


Her affair obviously has hurt your marriage. But keeping this a secret has really hurt you, it's now eating you up.

Shine a bright light on this fucking sordid affair of hers. About bloody time you did.

Show her all that evidence. Make for an interesting conversation don't you think? Start with her telling him all your flaws, and that she'll always have feelings for him.

But more importantly you'll finally take the lid off this boiling pot of emotions inside of you, let them escape and you can start to heal.

Or you can keep playing it safe. Doing so you've ended up here all torn up.

posts: 386   ·   registered: Dec. 25th, 2015   ·   location: Canada
id 8699218
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Robert22205https ( member #65547) posted at 11:59 AM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

I'm sorry you're dealing with the trauma of betrayal. It's not unusual for it to surface many years later because it wasn't fully processed when discovered. Consequently, it's not just a distant memory but you're reliving the D day.

Why do you think there was no sex?
Why did they stop? Was it the OM that suggested they stop?
Do you have the OM's contact information (or can you get it0?

In our culture a deep kiss w/body contact is a very very intimate act (especially when they think they're in love). Studies/interviews with cheaters find that it was the last intimate line that when crossed led to intercourse (when/or the next time they're alone).

It's reasonable under the circumstances to assume that when two married adults (who think they're in love) meet secretly in a hotel room it's for sex (not to talk).

posts: 2452   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: DC
id 8699222
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Happenedtome2 ( member #68906) posted at 1:49 PM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

Gentleman,
I am sorry you are here and really sorry for your situation. Let's be clear here - If they met and went back to his hotel, they had sex. Period. The fact that they did a lot of this in secret should tell you all you need to know.

I will go against the grain of most of the advice that you'll hear moving forward. Sticking it out for the sake of your kids is a decision that you felt you had to make. It was a tough decision. I know the feeling. It's a huge part of why I waited so long to drop D on my WW. Like you, I also hit the point where I no longer thought that I felt anything for her. It is a difficult and confusing situation to be in.

What you do moving forward is about your happiness now. You know what she did. If you think you can continue to live with that then it is ultimately your decision. If you choose to cut ties, then that is what is best for you.

The only thing I will advise is to talk to a lawyer one way or the other and get your finances in order....then confront her. She needs to know that you know everything. So does the OM's spouse, but again, that's your decision. Get into IC for yourself.

No matter what you do, this isn't, and never was YOUR fault. This is your wife's doing. She made a conscious decision to cheat.
I wish you the best in whatever you do moving forward.

BH DDay August 2018 :https://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=633451

posts: 481   ·   registered: Nov. 23rd, 2018
id 8699227
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MangledHeart ( Webmaster) posted at 2:00 PM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

Marz you have a PM.

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow; it empties today of its strength. ~Corrie Ten Boom

posts: 10000   ·   registered: May. 31st, 2002   ·   location: Texas
id 8699229
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jb3199 ( member #27673) posted at 2:06 PM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

I specifically recall a member's analogy in stories like these. He would describe it as inhaling a bunch of poison, and then holding your breath for x amount of time. For you, it has been over 15 years. Those toxins have done a lot of damage to you, and will probably continue to deteriorate from the inside out unless addressed.

What's past is past. You have the ability to improve your future, if you wish to do so.

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: 3855   ·   registered: Feb. 21st, 2010   ·   location: northeast
id 8699231
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Tigersrule77 ( member #47339) posted at 3:06 PM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

OP, it sounds as though you and your WW have been living in a sham or toxic M for the last 15+ years. Why do you want to let this continue? Do you want to live the rest of your life this way? As you are here, it seems probably not.

As others have said, you have the ability to make changes in your life. The only thing keeping you stuck where you are is you. I suggest you start making changes that you think will help you heal, as it sounds like you never have.

posts: 1558   ·   registered: Mar. 27th, 2015   ·   location: Maryland
id 8699261
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still2suspicious ( member #31722) posted at 7:17 PM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

Gentleman,

When I read your story my heart broke. You see, although our stories are different (have never shared my story) I, too, am at the crossroads of 16 years.

We never really reconciled, as my H has admitted only what I was able to prove (which isn't a lot) and pretty much deflects it all back to me.

Since it was just swept under the rug, he gave himself permission to now be going on year 5 of his current affair. shocked For the first 2-1/2 years we had so many arguments over her (as she was my friend barf ). He denied each and every time, no matter how many times I told him she had to be gone.

For the last 2-1/2 years we have not said ONE word about her/him. On that day he told me SHE was his BFF! That was the day I just stopped. Stopped trying to prove anything, stopped trying to make him see it from my side, just stopped.

Since he is the KING of conflict-avoidance he has just sailed along with this very loveless, sexless sham of a M.

Me? Yeah, not so much. I have worked on myself, guided and supported DD being cheated on mad , and just pretended everything was fine.
I could not leave before now due to financials, but all is now good there.

I just told him this last weekend that I am done, this M is over, and he is welcome to go to her (she won't leave her M, I'm sure) or anybody else that catches his eye. He will be served after Thanksgiving.

I am sure he does not believe me, and just thinks I was spouting off once again.

Look into the future, and really dig deep to answer if this M is what you are willing to live. Only you can answer that. We have been together 50 years, and I was as scared as hell to think of life without him. But I have learned MY peace and happiness is worth so much more than this dumbshit! laugh

Sending you peace and strength.

PS: sorry for the long novel blush

[This message edited by still2suspicious at 7:19 PM, Friday, November 19th]

Me: BS
Him: WH
DDay: LTEA
Every storm runs out of rain - Gary Allen

posts: 1723   ·   registered: Apr. 1st, 2011   ·   location:
id 8699357
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Underserving ( member #72259) posted at 8:22 PM on Friday, November 19th, 2021

I appreciate you sharing your story. It seems like, more than anything, you wanted to be a cautionary tale to others. Yes, rugsweeping (as we like to call it around here) does often lead to unresolved feelings and resentments. That nagging feeling of not knowing the truth doesn’t go away, does it? :( I’m so sorry for all that you have experienced.

It’s never too late to hash this out with her if you want. I understand if you don’t. There have been a few people come here decades later because they never properly dealt with their partner’s affair. It’s ok if that’s you too.

Let us know if we can help you in any way. We’re pretty good listeners, and never short on advice. A good rule of thumb is to take what you need and leave the rest.

Wishing you the very best.

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

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

posts: 736   ·   registered: Dec. 9th, 2019
id 8699365
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sisoon ( Guide #31240) posted at 3:38 PM on Saturday, November 20th, 2021

Gently, I read of a man who has chosen not to confront in 2005 and every day since then. What would you have to change to confront today? What would happen if you confronted now?

I'm very sorry you're in so much pain. There's no painless way out, but there are good pathways to find joy again. It means feeling the pain now in order to feel whole and be authentic in the near future. I encourage you to to consider a new way to live your life.

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

posts: 26263   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8699455
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HouseOfPlane ( member #45739) posted at 1:33 PM on Monday, November 22nd, 2021

Looking back I have wondered what would have happened if I confronted her with the emails and phone tapes. I worried at the time it might bring it to a head and we could divorce with our kids due to graduate high school in 2007. I wanted them to graduate from a intact home.

Mission accomplished, Gent. Take pride in that. Right up there with donating an organ for your children.

We weren't fighting so the kids had no idea. As time went on it seemed like there was one thing after another to cause me to put this off.

There’s tremendous power in knowing what you know, seeing behind the curtain your wife had put up. You know the truth, and her not knowing you know gives you a measure of control. You give up some of that power when you let the cat out of the bag. Maybe that was an underlying element here?

In life, a lot of the chains that bind us, we wear willingly.

Sending strength, gent!

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

posts: 2750   ·   registered: Nov. 25th, 2014
id 8699616
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