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Just Found Out :
Still reeling after D-Day revelations


 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 9:00 AM on Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024

In January this year, my husband (44) and I (45) were on a four-day cruise he took me on when he dropped the bomb on me. We have been together for 24 years, married for 17. I had never even heard of a D-Day but that day is burned into me as mine. 

He told me that he's been in an 'emotional affair' for the past year and has ‘feelings’ for this woman; he loves me but is no longer in love with me; that he loves me like a sister; that we are 'roommates' and that he cannot stay with me until our kids are 18. That he is not my person anymore and that 24 years is too long to be with the same person. He told me that he thinks he may be having a midlife crisis and has become ‘numb’ to me since his mother's death in 2018. 

It was a total blindside and I remember wailing in shock & disbelief in that tiny cabin. I considered throwing myself overboard many times that night. The only thing that stopped me was my children.

He had never sat down with me once to discuss any problems or issues beforehand or made any attempt at an honest & respectful conversation about what was bothering him so that we could work together to fix it, go on dates and spend time together or even go for marriage counselling or even that he was considering an affair or a divorce. There wasn’t a single conversation. I knew he was stressed with work and life as I was.
Last year I did start to feel a distance from him and he seemed more irritated with me and with us and said some strange things. I chalked it up to our busy lives and jobs and financial pressure and all our responsibilities. There were also a couple of nights when he left home at 4.30pm for a run and came home at 2am. We were sick with worry but he never communicated with us and I’m not sure if he was with his AP at those times. 

That D-Day day, my husband and best friend instantly became a complete stranger to me. He was so cold and so cruel.
I thought, as my kids did, and everyone who loves us, that we had a happy, fulfilled and loving marriage. We were best friends, shared our lives together, raised our beautiful children, had a good sex life (though the frequency had diminished a bit in the last year or so) and were devoted to our kids & our family. 

For the last three years, however, he has barely been at home/present as he is a marathon runner and is away from home five days a week on his runs. His AP is a runner too and his affair with her started at the running club. She knew he was married with children.  Even though his running obsession took him away from us, I rarely brought it up because I knew how happy it made him and relieved his stress. Never would I have imagined he was running away from me into another person’s arms and running away from all we had built together.

My mom told me in all the years we have been together that I have never said one bad word about my husband and all my friends and family have told me I put him on such a pedestal. I would have loved this man forever and felt so proud and honoured to be his wife and thought that we would make it through all the hard times that life threw our way and be together through all the good times.

He was my first real boyfriend and helped heal me from my horrific rape at the age of 13. He is the only man I’ve ever been with. It makes me so unbelievably sad that he would hurt me this way.

He has completely blamed me for everything - the end of the marriage and his affair. The only concession he has made is that he should have helped me clean the house more often! He has rewritten our entire marriage and especially our intimate moments in the most brutal way and was even keeping a record in the last few months of how often we had sex as if he was measuring me up against someone else.

He told my kids, who begged him to please try to fix this with mom, that he has wanted to divorce me for four years and that he loves me but is not in love with me and that he loves me like a sister. It is all so humiliating and demeaning. But then he tells me how much he loved me when he put FB messages up last year on our anniversary. It’s so confusing.
I really tried to save my marriage and my family but about two weeks after D-Day, I soon realised that I could not do it alone. 
He wanted me to pay half for the divorce and to tell the kids we have grown apart. I resisted and did tell them (don't know if it was wrong or right as they are 11 and 15) that dad has feelings for someone else. Was this his exit affair? 

There was a similar ‘emotional affair’ incident in 2015 with another runner that I discovered but it seemed fleeting and quickly shut down at my request all those years ago. It made me insecure but he promised nothing happened. I’m not sure if there were other women over the years after he checked out. 

He has since told me he was ‘looking for someone else’ since 2022 and there’s a ‘darkness’ in him. I have spent the last two months blaming myself on most days - what didn't I do, why wasn't I enough - all the devaluing got to me in a huge way. I know I have many flaws, but I really don't feel that I deserve this horrible treatment.

The day after D-Day he took off his wedding ring and never put it back on yet he told me how ashamed he is not to wear it and how he hides his hand. While we were living together, for six gruelling weeks after D-Day, he would tell me how much he loved me, missed me and how he would never get over me and how he could never see me as his ex wife. That I was his everything. But he could never be intimate with me in that time - I wonder if it was because he now committed to this other person? I humiliated myself trying to use my sexual wiles to reconnect with him. 

There were so many mind games he played with me and I wonder if it was genuine feelings (or remnants of them) or manipulation or guilt. They made me so confused and even hopeful at times that our marriage could be saved. Yet he is sticking to his choice to divorce and is not interested at all in RC. I don’t even think I could ever trust him again. They say when someone shows you they are, believe them. Nor can I be married to someone who doesn’t love me anymore. They also say ‘everywhere you go, there you are’, and I hope one day the lies and betrayal catch up to him even though I feel so bad for having thoughts like that. He told his aunt that his divorced AP has no baggage and is the perfect woman. 

I have since moved out of our home with my children as I had to get out of the house, even knowing how disruptive and traumatic it was for my kids. Even though he saw my deep pain and how he had broken me, it was a struggle to get him to move out. Also, it wasn't safe for the three of us to live in that house alone as there is a lot of crime in South Africa. 

That night of D-Day, I instantly deleted my FB, unfollowed him on social media and have never looked at his phone and their messages as I don’t want more darkness in my life. I’m proud of myself for this too. On D-Day, I think I already instinctively knew the marriage was dead. Sometimes, being proud is all you have.
I'm glad we are in a new, different place where I can begin to heal and don't have the ghosts and memories of our family home. I am also gaining more clarity with the distance from him and am trying to emotionally detach. I have never contacted him since the move to beg him to change his mind, nor I have I ever spoken about this nightmare to him again since we left our home or for anything. I don’t need him and am okay on my own with my kids and every day is a new step in rebuilding. For this too, I’m proud of myself.

He kept saying he wants to cook for us every day and doesn’t want us not to need him, but I shut that down. None of this is acceptable to me. 

I have found God again and feel his strength and love. My husband told me that ‘if he ever takes me back’ there will be none of that’ (God) in our lives. He is an atheist.

He says we must fix the house to sell it and then he will divorce me. There is no money to do that. I have told his family whom I am very close to what has happened and my friends and family and have incredible support from so many people and feel so blessed. There is so much disappointment from everyone as he was such a "good guy".

But I still feel so alone inside of myself and have many suicidal thoughts in a day. I pray hard to overcome them and can't imagine putting my kids in more heartache like that. At the same time I am so exhausted and really am just seeking peace from this nightmare. I have lost 10 kilograms since this started and wake up each night at 3am after dreaming of him and his AP. I am vaping myself to death and know I need to stop. I can barely concentrate at work.

I know cheating is a choice but I do wonder if he is suffering from depression and if this shiny new person made him feel good, validated and less numb? But then, while we were packing up and readying to move out he was whistling as if he was the happiest man alive! Who is this cold, cowardly person? Was he already so detached?

He has done nothing yet to divorce me and I am unsure whether I should divorce him first just not to endure a long drawn out separation and be the 'third person' in our marriage as I have no doubt that things with his AP have progressed significantly - if they hadn’t already while we were still together. I know I need to protect myself and my children financially as he earns more than me. What if this becomes years of living in limbo?
It seems as if he is trying to win the support of my daughter, who is 11, as she told me yesterday that dad has found his true love and that we must all be happy for him and that I really need to be his friend now and stop being mean to him and about him with family and friends. It hurt so much. My teenage son seems less forgiving as he sees the emotional wreck his mother is and the wreckage for him & his sister.

Our family is broken now, we all need counselling, and I'm a single mom and I cannot just be happy for him or forgive him. Everything is so painfully raw.  So many people tell me to ‘let go’. He has crushed me and destroyed my faith and trust in people. 

The only time I saw my husband express any emotion [he cried] is when I told him we can't be friends, that he can't come for supper every week and no, we can't have coffee dates, as nothing out of this toxic situation is acceptable to me. And that honour, respect and integrity are important to me and that's what I leave my marriage with. He looked crestfallen as in the fantasy he has concocted he would have it all - me as his BFF and his shiny new woman.

I am trying to do low contact with him and it is so hard because of the kids and because up until recently he kept trying to see me in our new place and trying to hug me all the time and confide in me about all his problems. But he has kicked me out of the wife job. He gets angry and storms off when I don't hug him back though I admit sometimes I just crave his touch and to 'feel safe' in his arms even though I can never trust him again.

How do I be strong and deal with having him in my life as the kids' father but as a man who is no longer my husband? I know I cannot love a ghost. I feel so guilty for barely communicating with him, seeming uncaring, being cold and business-like about arrangements with the kids, because I am not like that but I do not want to share any more of my myself with this man, who has little compassion and empathy for me, and for our children and keeps just saying they are resilient and don’t need counselling. 
He has made me feel so worthless, small and insignificant.

Our kids, too, blame themselves though I have assured them so many times this is not their fault in any way at all. It breaks me how much damage he has caused our innocent children who have had this bomb detonated on their lives. Now, we must deal with the fallout. My daughter, who is really close to her dad, says she has suicidal thoughts too. Nothing breaks my heart more than this. 

The kids only see their dad once during the week and every second weekend (I insisted they see him at least once a week while he was happy for just every other weekend!) He is not interested in shared custody (50/50). I am so worried that the kids will be sidelined as his new single life or life with AP intensifies. Ironically, he told me he knows he hasn’t made the kids a priority before and that now with the divorce they will be! I feel the full brunt of rejection and never want my children to feel anything remotely like this.

He is now being more distant with me and I am distant from him and I just don't know how I can continue to do this every day to be honest. I’m haunted by thoughts of whether he will ever realize or regret blowing up our lives and our family.

Everyone says ‘you will heal, things will get better, you will find someone who loves and cherishes you’. That he doesn’t deserve me.  But this has been the most devastating and traumatic part of my life and I can't go on most days. Sometimes, I feel so desperate for an end to this pain and deep grief. I hope someone who has been in this dark place can please help encourage me out of this unending nightmare.


posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8831904

Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 10:26 AM on Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024


Sorry you are here.
Good to hear that it isn’t normal or natural to love the same person for 24 years. If you can, give him my thanks for that nugget. Just last night as I went to bed I was telling my wife of over 30 years that I think I love her more now than ever before. Might lust a bit less, but love the life she has made possible for me. I have to remember to tell her how wrong I was... 😉

One thing I note in your story is how often you mention what he does or does not do. Like he doesn’t move out. He doesn’t file. He will only take you back if you compromise on your faith.

I am going to suggest you take back your power.
When he tells you he doesn’t love you... tell him that you do. You love him. However his actions are causing you to lose respect for him. That in turn will probably turn your love into compassion, and then pity. That can happen pretty quickly.

I encourage you STRONGLY to look into your rights in divorce.
It’s not what you want, but IF this continues it’s the inevitable outcome. It’s better to know what’s ahead and how YOU can control what you can control.
That in turn could lead YOU to file. Its not a final or instantaneous process. But it can either make him realize the consequences of his actions and possibly make him see the light, or it can just start the inevitable, leading you to freedom and out of infidelity.

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

posts: 12478   ·   registered: Sep. 29th, 2005
id 8831906

Jajaynumb ( member #83674) posted at 11:17 AM on Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024

I totally understand what you’re going through. I’m going through the same thing with my WW. It’s also complicated by me having a breakdown and having to leave the country so I don’t get to see my kids very often. Be thankful you don’t have that to deal with.

You’re doing the right things and it will get better. Contact for the kids and grey rock with the no emotion is the way to go. You have nothing to work with, see a lawyer and get the best financial and custody deals you can get. File for divorce, he won’t do it because he wants to keep you on the hook if things don’t work out with the other woman.

It will take time and therapy to get through this but you will do it.

posts: 174   ·   registered: Aug. 1st, 2023   ·   location: Europe
id 8831909

fareast ( Moderator #61555) posted at 2:22 PM on Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024


Your WH is following the cheaters script. Blameshifting and rewriting the marital history. His actions are extremely selfish and he is broken. Do not try and make sense of it. There are literally hundreds of stories here where the BS describes the WS as a complete stranger, an alien, confusing, etc. nI know it does little to help your pain but your WH is a very common cheater. For you, do try and get into IC to help you cope with the trauma. Be there for your children. I hope you can see how phony his attempts to be friends and his desire for the children to be happy for him are. This is all about making him feel better about his terrible choices. After all, if you can be friends, and if the children can be happy for him, how bad could his betrayal be? Don’t fall for this manipulation. Your children are right to detest his behavior. You are correct not to want to be friends. No contact as much as possible is your best strategy moving forward. Communicate in writing on child matters and finances. Do move forward with the D process. You can always stop if he pulls out of his narcissistic decline. Strength to you.

Good luck.

[This message edited by SI Staff at 3:56 PM, Wednesday, April 3rd]

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

posts: 3898   ·   registered: Nov. 24th, 2017
id 8831927

leafields ( Guide #63517) posted at 11:56 PM on Wednesday, April 3rd, 2024

Welcome to SI and I'm sorry that you're here. There are some pinned posts at the top of the page that you may find helpful. The Healing Library has some great resources and includes the list of acronyms we use.

If you can, IC (individual counseling) with a therapist who specializes in betrayal trauma may be helpful. Bonus points if they specialize in infidelity betrayal trauma.

There were also a couple of nights when he left home at 4.30pm for a run and came home at 2am.

I'm going to guess that he was with the AP and you're going to find out that this wasn't just an EA. When there's oppportunity, they're going to have sex. Cheaters lie and then lie some more.

If you have trouble sleeping or with depression or anxiety, please see your doctor for some meds. You won't necessarily be on them for a long time, but they can help you through this terrible first part. Infidelity pain is the worst and doesn't go away overnight.

Your emotions will be all over the place - we call it the emotional rollercoaster.

The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk is about healing from trauma and recommends exercise such as yoga to help your body process.

BW M 34years, Dday 1: March 2018, Dday 2: August 2019, D final 2/25/21

posts: 3547   ·   registered: Apr. 21st, 2018   ·   location: Washington State
id 8832019

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 10:56 AM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Thank you so much Bigger for your wise words and for reading my long post. While long, it felt really cathartic to write my story down. The deep love that you and your wife have for each other after all these years is so beautiful!

I will take back my power (I try to make small steps in this every day but sometimes falter) and it's so interesting what you say about compassion & pity - as I sometimes do feel that for H already. I have lost so much respect for him and I know he is a broken man. I still love him very much but I think I love the person he used to be (or who I thought he was), not the stranger I see in front of me.

I will definitely make an appointment to see a lawyer - not sure if it's a family lawyer, given there are kids involved, or a divorce lawyer? I'm sure it will make this horrible mess even more real when I do. But it is the realistic next step.

All I know is that I can't live in financial and emotional limbo until he decides he is filing for divorce after selling our house - he has done nothing on either front and seems to just be loving the single life with his AP. Their relationship has probably only intensified since we moved out. As you say, looking into and even initiating the divorce is perhaps one thing I can control here and not leave him with all the power and as the decider.

Can I ask you if there are typically regrets for the BS in initiating divorce in these kinds of situations? Thank you so much again!!!!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832056

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 11:06 AM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Thank you so much JaJaynumb for your reply and I'm so sorry to read what you've also been going through. I hope you get to heal from your own nightmare and that you get to spend time with your kids soon.

What you said - there is nothing to work with here - has really stuck in my brain. You are so right. I also don't think there's anything to work with here. Now it's up to me to be brave and take the next steps as difficult as this all is. It is the reality I am facing as hard and heartbreaking as it is to accept it.

No contact is so hard when you have kids. I know if we didn't share kids, I could really try to cut him out but because of the kids, there is often contact. I am just doing my best to be civil and not too friendly (I am a very friendly person by nature and it's hard for me to be cold and distant). My biggest prize is avoiding any physical interactions as happened last night when I dropped the kids by him and he was syrupy sweet with me and trying to hug me.

I will read about grey rock. Thank you so much!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832058

Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 11:23 AM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Can I ask you if there are typically regrets for the BS in initiating divorce in these kinds of situations?

Yes. All the time. I think it’s very uncommon to file and not have doubts and even regrets.
There was a very big survey done about 15-20 years ago about divorce. Don’t remember who but it was one of the larger Ivy-League universities and was (at the time) considered quite ground-breaking. When asked 12 months after the divorce was finalized something like 80% regretted the divorce, and/or said that the issues could have been resolved. Same group queried at 18 months were over 90% happy and content with the decision to divorce. A big change in six months...
This goes in line with what seems a common trend: It takes the human body and mind 18-24 months to recover from major traumatic events. We can definitely speed that process, and we can probably slow it down.

What I suggest is that you view your situation from absolute reality:
Even if you do NOT want to divorce then until and unless your husband offers a marriage based on mutually acceptable conditions you don’t have a choice.
It’s like if you had some illness in a foot and the only available cure was to amputate at the knee... It wouldn’t be what you wanted or even wished for. But the only option if you don’t amputate is an inevitable slow death from blood-poisoning.
So you plan the operation, visit the doctors, go to the hospital and do all the pre-op tests...
If sometime along this process your doctor tells you of a new wonder-drug that COULD cure you and save your life then of course you would pause, and maybe even avoid the amputation.

It’s the same with your marriage right now. IMHO you have a path available. You can pace it, pause it and even cancel it. But chances are you will eventually walk all the way, and with time be content with your decision.

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

posts: 12478   ·   registered: Sep. 29th, 2005
id 8832059

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 11:29 AM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Thank you so much for your wise words Fareast! Everything you've said makes total and complete sense. It is so crazy and unreal to think that my husband is actually a common cheater and that they all use the same tawdry script.

He has totally rewritten our marriage and blame-shifted 100%. I'll admit that in the first few weeks, I took on so much blame as I really thought it all was on me and I was so desperate to save my marriage. For a time, I really believed this was all my fault and that I was to blame though I knew in my heart that many of the things he was saying were completely untrue and really centred on how he was justifying his affair. It didn't even help to try to get through to him with the truth as there was also a lot of gaslighting.

Do they really believe their untruths or do you think that they know deep down that many of their accusations are not true?

I love your description of his phony attempts at friendship. I will remember it every time he messages me and tells me about his problems or when he tries to hug me. I think as he is doing with our kids, and with me, it's all about PR. My daughter, 11, keeps telling me, 'mom dad still cares about you so much' and 'hugs you' because he loves you but he is not in love with you'. Who tells these things to a child? How can you even tell your young daughter that you wanted to divorce her mom four years ago. I hope one day my daughter sees this situation and her father's manipulation of her for what it is.

I did tell him before I moved out that I have set these boundaries and I don't want him to communicate with me about anything other than the kids or finances or the logistics of the divorce etc. A few hours later, he was already messaging me sharing where was on his marathon somewhere. He constantly tries to push my boundaries. I cannot let him inside our house one more time. I even did the family suppers/kids birthday celebrations thing with him two or three times where he was in our new house because the kids asked. I feel I have eaten a lot of shit sandwiches in the last few weeks.

I'm not a very assertive person and sometimes don't know how to deal with this.

My son was so funny last night when I pulled into the old house where we lived to drop off the kids. He kept saying, 'mom, don't park in the driveway, you know dad is going to come talk to you.' I told him 'no, dad needs to respect mom's boundaries'. Wasn't my son right that the H came out in his apron and started sweet talking me like we were best friends. I chatted to him for a few moments and quickly made my exit!!! Small victories I guess.

Thank you so much for your advice. As hard as it is I will move forward with the divorce process. I need to remember I am the prize, and not anyone's Plan B or second choice. Thank you again!!!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832060

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 11:55 AM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Thank you so much leafields for your wonderful and valuable advice! I am also very sorry to be here. Never imagined, probably like millions of other betrayed people, that this would become my reality.

But this site is really incredible and the advice, support and empathy is awesome. I have read a lot of people's accounts of their own betrayals and there are so many similarities in people's stories. I feel stronger since I first posted my long story just by being on this site.

You're so right that this is more than an EA. I always felt in my gut, even though he has vehemently denied it. I think he is denying it just for the optics so that he can 'look better' to his family and maybe even to me if it wasn't physical. Adults have sex. I have no doubt that happened and continues.

My former neighbour is a relationship therapist and has offered to counsel me for free. I just need him to help give me the tools to cope so that when my mind drifts in the darkness, I can overcome it. I will definitely consider the meds as numerous people have suggested it too. I signed up to gym last week and will get myself into a yoga class there and will see if I can find the book you recommended. Thank you!

I hear you on the emotional rollercoaster. It does feel that way. But I hold onto all the joy I have in my life, my beautiful kids and amazing friends, family and co-workers. I just pray for the day this is not the only thing occupying my thoughts and to wake up and not think about it! Thank you so much again!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832062

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 12:13 PM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Thanks so much Bigger, such fascinating results from this survey. Short term pain but fingers crossed, hopefully long term gain. I always imagined it would take about that long - 18 to 24 months - to truly heal though I know everyone heals at a different pace. 24 years is a lifetime and it probably will take me a long time to move through all this brutal pain. But maybe the divorce will help the healing and just help me take charge of my own life and future with my kids. I can rebuild.

I know I will have many deep regrets, and doubts, once I file. Many people in my WH's family and some friends say no, I should wait for him to divorce me as he wants it and he should do it and live with himself. But I also see here that as you say, I need to confront my absolute reality. There is not really any other choice - it's an inevitable outcome. There truly is nothing to work with here, not even any genuine remorse on his part. I have to accept the situation for what it is, as hard as it is.

I really like your illness in a foot analogy - it makes perfect sense in this situation! In my heart, I truly don't think we can avoid this amputation and there is more than likely no wonder drug for my marriage, sadly. Thank you for your wise words, it's given me a lot of food for thought today.

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832064

TheEnd ( member #72213) posted at 12:37 PM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

I'm sorry you are here. This is such a traumatic, horrible experience.

I'm concerned about his wanting to fix up the house, sell it and THEN divorce you. I wouldn't do any such thing.

My advice to you is to see a lawyer STAT. The house is usually one of the larger assets in a marriage and I wouldn't agree to selling or a division of that asset without counsel. I certainly wouldn't be putting my money into it only to have to split the proceeds with a man that abandoned his family.

Sign nothing. Agree to nothing. See a lawyer and protect yourself legally and financially from this man.

You sound strong. You have more clarity than most newly betrayeds. Keep your head and get legal help.

posts: 621   ·   registered: Dec. 3rd, 2019
id 8832065

Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 2:34 PM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

First, see a lawyer. Preferably a bulldog.
Second, get tested. Everyone your WS has had sex with you have been exposed.
Third, get firm boundaries. This means no chatting in the driveway. Drop kids off in front. When he starts out the door you leave. You do this to protect your own emotions because his are no longer your concern.
Fourth make a list of things that need to be done and start on those. Keeping your mind and body busy helps with your pain
Fifth talk to a dr if you need help sleeping.

Also stay away from alcohol, eat as healthy as possible(use something like Ensure if you are having trouble eating), find things to do.

Remember he has done a terrible injury to you. I am appalled that he would use a cruise for this confrontation. I hope you are even more angry than that

When things go wrong, don’t go with them. Elvis

posts: 4272   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8832076

cedarwoods ( member #82760) posted at 3:27 PM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

I am so sorry you are here.
We’ve walked the painful path you are on now so we know what you are going through.
It is absolutely traumatic and painful beyond words.
There is really no way to describe the torment you are experiencing.
Please know that we hear you and support you.

Your WH’s story will resonate with almost every SI members here.
It’s a classic cheater’s story.
They are so blinded that they can’t see straight. It’s almost as if they are possessed by the devil.
The lies they tell themselves to justify their actions are just insane.
And unfortunately you and your children are caught up in the storm.
But you will get through it. It is going to be a long and difficulty journey but you will survive.
It is probably impossible to believe that it will get better. But it really does. One hour at a time, Angie.

Your WH wanting to remain friends with you is terribly manipulative on his part. He is wanting it all. And it’s emotionally damaging to you. You need to set him free as he wanted and you forge ahead with your life. Give him what he wants. He wants the divorce? Then he doesn’t get to have you. End of story.
See a couple of divorce lawyers and get their advice. You need to empower yourself now with people who support you.

I am glad you renewed your faith in God. He sees you and will sustain you.
Find comfort and strength in his words. I found the book of Psalms to be very helpful.

posts: 211   ·   registered: Jan. 20th, 2023   ·   location: USA
id 8832090

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 8:48 PM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

You're so right TheEnd. He thinks he will use whatever profit from the sale of the house (after the renovations, which there is no money for) to D me. Then I must pay half for that. All the power lies with him.

Thank you so much for your good advice. I will have to consult with a few lawyers (made the first tentative steps today after everyone's advice here) to see what the best situation is, financially and will not sign or agree to anything till I am aware of my rights. I really don't want, nor can I afford, a long drawn out legal battle. I think the best way to proceed is an uncontested D.

This is all really hitting me financially. While he is living in our home, I am paying half the expenses there and it's a sizeable amount - half my salary - while he has contributed a small share to our rent in our new place.

Nevermind the emotional burden of filing for D, I think the best thing to do financially is to divorce him and push for the sale of the house as is and get maintenance orders and custody agreements in place and secured.

As you say, he abandoned his family, has discarded us like trash, but in his mind he is only leaving me. He literally said the kids 'are not collateral damage' as he is still there for his kids. The mental gymnastics that these people must play to be able to sleep at night.

Thank you so much again!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832136

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 9:10 PM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Thanks so much Cooley2here - hope I can find a bulldog lawyer. I will shop around. I will get myself tested for STDs - thank you for raising this and what a scary thought.

Thanks for the healthy lifestyle tips - I will get some Ensure. Trying to eat more as I literally am a skeleton now & the constant vaping probably also doesn't help.

You're so right. I have had many NC fails in the last few weeks. Tbh, I never want to see him again. So, in future, no chit chat - any interaction always sets me back hugely - and will drive off and if he comes here to fetch the kids, I will make sure I'm not here. I will heed your NC advice.

What worries me is that the kids see our interactions and gauge them. Like today, I popped in to our old house to get the phone charger, didn't realise he was there and got a shock when he popped his head up. He was super cheery but I was abrupt with him and barely engaged but then my son said, 'mom that was awkward' and 'dad was talking to you and you just walked away'. I really don't know how to handle this. What if he looks better to the kids and I just look like this bitter, angry person??? That's probably where the NC comes in - avoid all physical interactions.

Yes, it's unbelievable that he dropped this bomb on our cruise. We never have money to go away and he had won this trip last year. I thought we were having such an awesome & relaxing time together, watching the jellyfish, swimming and soaking up in the jacuzzi, completely unaware of what he was planning to do. It makes me really angry and heartsore. And then I was stuck in that tiny cabin with him and still had to drive back home to Johannesburg with him for eight unbearable hours. I will never forget how cold he was that day.

Yet that night he got into our bed like nothing had happened! I kicked him out of our room and until I left, he never slept alongside me again!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832139

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 9:42 PM on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Thank you so much for your beautiful message cedarwoods. It does feel like we are caught up in this raging storm that's just tossing us around like debris. But I am really encouraged by your hope and faith in our future. I know that most people survive this (and thrive too) and also that so many bad things happen to people all the time - I see that in my job every day - and that they can endure, overcome and forge a new path.

It has felt wonderful to find my faith again after many years in a spiritual wilderness. During the first week after D-Day, probably like many BS, I didn't sleep at all. Five days in, I said a gentle prayer and slept through the night for the first time. I really feel God's presence in my life and that He is also opening up my eyes to really see my H as he is. I know that the strength I feel many times during the day is because of God's presence in my life. It's a connection that I hope to nurture and deepen. Hopefully, in time, God will help me forgive him so I can truly move on.

I love your point about setting him free but then he can't have me. That is the perfect way to look at this. I can't hold onto someone who doesn't love me as a wife. I need to let go. And no true friend could ever hurt a person this way. It feels like you are being stabbed in the back and in the front.

It's been so sad to realise his manipulation for what it is and I will not be his friend (probably for a long time) to ease his conscience. Thank you - I will see those lawyers - and forge that new path!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832144

Shehawk ( member #68741) posted at 1:51 AM on Friday, April 5th, 2024

"Sorry you are here.

Good to hear that it isn’t normal or natural to love the same person for 24 years. If you can, give him my thanks for that nugget. Just last night as I went to bed I was telling my wife of over 30 years that I think I love her more now than ever before. Might lust a bit less, but love the life she has made possible for me. I have to remember to tell her how wrong I was... 😉"

This ^^^

I too am so sorry you find yourself here. I am years out from a second DD from a long-term spouse. Every situation is different. The betrayal I experienced at the hands of ex WH was stunning, scarring, and life changing.

I wish you peace and healing. Although each situation is different, based on my experiences, I encourage betrayed spouses to take exquisite physical, emotional, spiritual, and legal/financial care of themselves and any children.

[This message edited by Shehawk at 1:52 AM, Friday, April 5th]

"It's a slow fade...when you give yourself away" so don't do it!

posts: 1674   ·   registered: Nov. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8832168

Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 3:31 AM on Friday, April 5th, 2024

Try to remember if he was self centered because I keep going back to that cruise. That was unbelievably cruel. Now that you are out of his orbit can you look realistically at how he has been over the years? This man is playing you. You need to have a talk with your kids. He is going to undermine you by being the cheerful one. Put a smile on your face when the kids see you together. If you ever see him alone you can tell him to go f*** himself but don’t let him win this one. Please see a lawyer. Ask around and get a reference for one who will hold your ws’s feet to the fire.

When things go wrong, don’t go with them. Elvis

posts: 4272   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8832173

 Angie41 (original poster new member #84679) posted at 2:38 PM on Friday, April 5th, 2024

Thank you so much Shehawk for your kind wishes and I'm so sorry you've also experienced such betrayal.

I hope, too, to find peace and healing and will do my best to take care of myself and my kids especially in all the ways you've outlined.

There's a lot of hope in everyone's messages that this can be overcome - with time, grit and grace - and I draw on that and also know there's no easy road to travel from here.

Thank you so much again for the encouragement!

posts: 32   ·   registered: Apr. 3rd, 2024   ·   location: Johannesburg, South Africa
id 8832253
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