The Truths About His Affair

I have been reading a lot of other blogs lately and I am so surprised to see how similar all of our situations are. They are all very unique and different to each of us, but so many aspects are the same. I find a strange comfort in that. I find comfort in knowing that like my husband other good men have strayed and betrayed the woman they love most in the world. I find comfort in knowing that there are other strong women who have chosen to forgive and rebuild a life with the man they love. Here are some truths that I have learned during my recovery process.

Truth 1…An affair does not make a marriage better, period. I get so tired of hearing people say this could be the one thing that makes my marriage even stronger. I call bullshit…my marriage would have been even stronger if my husband would have had the courage to talk to me about his struggles and from there we could have worked things out. Affairs cause pain and distrust.

Truth 2…Trust your instincts no matter how solid you think your marriage is. Red flags don’t appear out of thin air. Once when I had returned home from a 5 day trip to NYC, JR surprised me by showing up at our house shortly after I had arrived. He very quickly threw me to the bed and made love to me. It was very passionate, during this he said out loud,”It’s always so good with you”. At the time I was quite stunned and didn’t say anything but I remember thinking to myself..as what, opposed to being bad with someone else? After we were done I asked him about what he said, he was shocked, he gave a nervous laugh and a quick explanation something to the effect that it’s just always really good. He didn’t realize he had said that out loud. The comfort I get is knowing that he truly thought that while having sex with me.

Truth 3…Men will do anything to protect the lie while it is going on, even after it has been discovered. Somehow they think they can make the sting less painful by easing you into the truth. Most women will agree I think, with just give it to me all at once so I can start processing it. Don’t drag me through it over and over.

Truth 4…The Other Woman will lie!!! Never forget that she is now being dumped by a man who she felt very connected to, who she may have planned a future with in her own fantasy world. Recently JR told me something new about the affair that he hadn’t shared before. He got a text one day from Nikki asking him did he want anymore children, to which he replied…No, No, hell No. I have 3 children and we don’t plan on having anymore(meaning he and I). He says that she was mad and ignored him for the rest of the day. This is a perfect example of how the affair meant very different things to each of them. She was young and wanted children and in some sick twisted way thought that she would eventually do this with my husband.

Truth 5…It is ok to do whatever you need to feel better. Scream, cry, break things. I chose to contact Nikki many times for the first few weeks post DDay. I was mean, hateful even, she deserved it. I made sure her husband found out, she was trying to keep it a secret. I did not protect my husband from any of this. I threw him out, more than once. I grilled him over and over again. I shopped a lot. I got a tattoo…something he never wanted me to do and I didn’t out of respect (I always wanted one). i made new rules for the marriage, either he could agree and stay or disagree and leave. He had disrespected me in so many ways I decided to put myself first for the first time in my life.

Truth 6…Men who are truly in love with their wives are not immune to affairs. Call it wrong place wrong time, who knows. I just know that I never had doubted JR’s love for me or his children. I was the most secure woman I knew. We were soul mates, destined to be together forever. Our bond was stronger than any of the couples we knew. We had a good life, believed in the same things, the sex was always frequent and good, sometimes really good! I never in a million years dreamed that JR would be vulnerable to an affair, but I was wrong.

Truth 7…Don’t stay if you can’t truly, completely forgive and trust your husband. Even though my thoughts get the better of me occasionally, I truly in my heart believe that JR will never stray from the marriage again. He has seen the pain and devastation it has caused me and our families and he sees what all he stands to lose. Even now he says he doesn’t deserve the life he has and I have to remind him that yes, he does. He is a good man. I love him as completely and honestly now as I did before all of this happened.

Truth 8…Staying with a betrayer does not mean you are a weak woman. In fact I believe it is quite the opposite. It would have been much easier to leave this marriage than to stay in it for the almost 2 years post DDay. It is much harder to stay and live with the reminders that pop up so often. To fight daily to gain a sense of self again. To help build up this man who has been stripped of so many things. To cry the buckets of tears that have been shed because of the immense pain that I have. To put on a happy face around people when I really just wanted to crawl in a hole and die.To be loving and caring towards your husband on days when you mostly just want to bash his face in. Remaining in your marriage is the hardest thing to do, and also the bravest.

Truth 9…It’s ok to not know what you want now. For months I told my husband that I didn’t know if I wanted to end the marriage or work on it..both I would say, depended on what time of day you asked me. I would tell him that I loved and I hated him and I did. There really is a very thin line between love and hate. The main thing I allowed myself was to feel whatever I was feeling without making apologies about it. I never told myself.. oh, you shouldn’t feel that way or, oh..you shouldn’t say that. I felt exactly what I felt when I felt it.

Truth 10…You will get through this. Even though you feel like there is no way back to being the person you once were, trust me you will. You will find new things to occupy your mind instead of obsessing about OW and the affair. You will trust yourself again. You will find a calm peace, and a sense of normalcy. There were many days that I never thought I could manage through the muck of the affair and the fallout afterwards. The thing that bothered me the most, and that I thought would never end, was that during every single sexual encounter that JR and I had over the past 2 years I always thought of her. Did he hold her like this, kiss her, touch her, etc. It was awful. However, yesterday, during a surprise lunch visit from JR, he decided he wanted me for dessert ;), it was fantastic as usual. It wasn’t until later that I realized that not once had I thought about Nikki, I was stunned. I couldn’t believe it, I cried, this was huge for me. This is how I know that she is truly leaving my thoughts and soon will be gone!!!

So that’s all I can come up with for now, I’m sure there are more. I try to remember that though I have much healing to do, I am not the only one. My husband has suffered much through this and he beats himself up all the time about what he did. He is struggling to heal same as me. Sometimes I actually believe he has more healing to do than me.

I want to share a quick story before I close. I remember when The Vow came out in theatres and I decided that I wanted to read the book and then go see the movie. I bought the book and it sat on my nightstand forever. Last February I went to visit my mother and almost went to the movies to see it but decided to wait until I got home to see it with JR. So I’m home and I ask JR to take me and he agrees, over and over something happens and we never make it to the movies. Now it’s gone from theaters and I’m upset that we never made it, even though I still never read the book. So the summer passes and JR and I celebrate our 24th wedding anniversary and I decide that I’m going to read the book, which I did in one day. I cried and cried so much while reading it that I would have to take breaks just to calm myself before I could go on. It’s such an incredible story of true love and a must read for hopeless romantics. After reading the book I decide that we must watch the movie. JR is not a book reader and I want him to know this story of love. Off to redbox we go and late that night we climb into bed and get nice and comfy and pop it in. From the beginning the movie is quite different from the book. I don’t want to spoil anything so I wont go into any details. I just want to mention one part from the movie that spoke to me in such a way. Glen Close is talking to her daughter about her husband’s affair and how she was able to remain in the marriage and she says, “I chose to stay, I chose to forgive him for the one thing he had done wrong and to stay for all of the things he has done right, I chose to forgive.” Those are some of the most powerful words I have heard to this day. We both held each other tight and the tears streamed down our faces. It was a moment of healing for us. At that moment it made sense to me why we never made it to see that movie in theatres…it wasn’t the right time. God has a plan for our marriage, and that place and time was when we were meant to see that movie. Sometimes you really do have to surrender yourself to God and just go with the flow. Let your heart guide you, it knows better than your mind.

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19 Responses to The Truths About His Affair

  1. hiddinsight says:

    What an absolutely incredible POWERFUL post!!!! I wish EVERYONE could read this!! One point that hit me the most is this: “My marriage would have been even stronger if my husband would have had the courage to talk to me about his struggles and from there we could have worked things out.” I used to fall into the trap of saying, “I was rewarded for my affair” because my marriage is stronger now. But you are totally right. If I would have TOLD HIM how I was feeling, we could have dealt with it much sooner. So glad you wrote this. Thank you.

    • kayboo24 says:

      The reason I feel so strongly about this is because in the early post DDays our therapist said to us during one session, “a lot of my clients tell me later that the affair was the best thing that ever happened to their marriage.” My husband quickly clung to this idea…he needed some hope in those darkest days. He would often times bring it up in conversation until one day I had just had enough. I looked at him with hate in my eyes and told him that in no way would our marriage ever be better because of the affair. No matter what, no matter how good things were, he would always still have cheated on me and that was not better. I used to think that if he was strong enough to woo some young girl and take her to bed, why wasn’t he strong enough to confide in me that he was struggling. Now I know that it wasn’t strength that led him into an affair, it was in fact weakness. He was so weak minded it was unreal. I do believe that he has since learned a great deal about communicating with me. We work at this marriage everyday!

      • hiddinsight says:

        I heard myself saying “YES….exactly…” throughout your comment here. It is absolutely spot on.

        I used the same logic your husband used…probably as a way to ease my conscience into it. It was cowardly and weak aside from selfish and narrow-minded.

        Can’t change the past, though. Maybe that’s where this statement comes in handy: your marriage does end up getting better and then you can point it back to d-day and it seems to be obvious. No one points it back to BEFORE d-day because nobody TELLS when it’s just starting to happen.

        Sometimes being human is such a drag. And human with hindsight is just…ugggg…frustrating. I think it’s what drives my passion with my blog. I realize how common sense could have changed the past, and hope that I may be able to offer advice before it gets to that point with someone else.

      • kayboo24 says:

        I have spent many frustrating hours kicking myself for not paying more attention to the things going on right in my face. Being in denial is also a drag…lol. I try not to look at the past so much these days, it is what it is. My husband cheated, it’s part of who I am now, part of who we are forever. Can’t change it, can’t get amnesia to forget it…lol. We strive everyday for more forgiveness and absolute happiness, and I know that one day (soon) we will get there 😉

      • hiddinsight says:

        Absolutely. And the wisdom you’ve gained while walking through this journey together is counter-cultural. It needs to be shared. I’m so glad you are. It’s worth all the hard work.

  2. Great post. You are so right on about the red flags. My husband started out of the blue asking me during sex “are you all mine, is it only mine?” I’d say to him “well I’m not sharing myself with anyone else”. This went on for years. There were other red flags I ignored as well. I think I was in denial. Yes, men will do anything and go to the most bizarre lengths to protect their lies. It’s insanity, which is how my husband describes his behavior. He says he was insane, out of his mind.

    • kayboo24 says:

      I was the queen of denial, and no I’m not speaking of some river in Egypt 😉 I believe that was my weakness, it’s like you know what’s coming and you figure, if I just stay here in this bubble then this really wont be happening to my life. I have kept some of the e-mails that JR had sent to me in those early weeks post DDay and one day about a year after, he was reading them and the look that came over his face was so hard for me to see. I remember him saying that he couldn’t believe that he had written those words to me, he said he didn’t recognize the man who had done and said all of those things. He was in fact insane for a brief period of time.

  3. tentativelyhopeful says:

    Excellent post!! All of the truths you’ve mentioned are so true.

    I get tripped up with truth #1. In some ways, I feel like if I hadn’t found out, our relationship would teeter as it had been doing for the past couple of years and we might have eventually divorced – with me none the wiser for his misdeed. On the other, I thought he and I had an agreement – we would come to each other if the other person wanted something else. He never came to me and told me that he was so deeply unhappy that he needed to have an affair to make his life more exciting. If he had, I would have known that we had a serious, serious problem and we could have started working it out right then and there. He made a decision that affected our whole family by himself….

    Truth #3 – I point blank asked him a week prior to D-Day if he was having an affair and he denied it. He was able to do so because I thought he was having an emotional affair with someone else, not a sexual affair with the person he was having an affair with. He was able to say, “No, I’m not having an affair with __”, because it was the truth – he was able to lie by omission.

    Truth # 8 – YES! It takes a strong person to stay knowing their spouse had an affair with another person.

    I feel stronger now – armed with knowledge and a plan.

    • kayboo24 says:

      I asked JR once point blank too if he was sleeping with Nikki, of course more denials. I should have trusted my instincts because they were spot on…as usual. I felt like I was living with a stranger sometimes, I guess in a way I was. I try not to harp to much on the would haves, could haves, and should haves. It just gets me stuck in the past instead of focusing on the present, and in the present, today is a good day!

  4. “Truth 1…An affair does not make a marriage better, period. I get so tired of hearing people say this could be the one thing that makes my marriage even stronger.”
    I agree. But what many of those idiots are trying to say is that a marriage can be better after an affair. They sometimes think the cause of it being better is the affair because an affair may alert a couple to troubles and they activate repair mechanisms. ARGH. Sure an affair may alert to problems, but is it worth the risk—other than just being wrong?
    “…my marriage would have been even stronger if my husband would have had the courage to talk to me about his struggles and from there we could have worked things out.”
    This is true. A better marriage is not caused by an affair, it’s caused by work—work at repair and on the marriage in cases of infidelity and work in the marriage in general when there is no infidelity. A beautiful marriage is the result of dedication to each other and to the marriage itself. My point is that an affair does not destroy the possibility for a marriage to still be wonderful.
    If you really want to see me go off on this read my review (negative) of book by a counselor…shocking.
    http://loveanyway.theherosspouse.com/?p=1183
    That link is to the first post of 3, I address the topic of affairs being beneficial (not to me) in Part II.

    “Truth 7…Don’t stay if you can’t truly, completely forgive and trust your husband”
    On the face of it, I’m going to disagree. I work with betrayed spouses who do not want a divorce—many do not believe in divorce and yet they do not know how to forgive and they doubt their ability. They can and they will, but they don’t know that yet…not at Bomb Drop. Forgiving is a process and it takes time, rebuilding trust is something that requires trustworthiness and infidelity destroys that. The betraying spouse rebuilds it by being consistently trustworthy through time. A week or a month is not enough time—and often an affair is not really over or it starts back up again, so there goes the trust again. If a person follows the don’t stay if directive based on how they feel in the beginning, it’s bad advice. But it is good advice later—and how much later depends on the situation. In the cases I work with, the spouses are Standing for their marriages and their partners are continuing their affairs—often they move out to live with the alienator. Rebuilding trust may be a few years away.

    • kayboo24 says:

      I think that you might have mistook my comments about don’t stay if you can’t completely forgive and trust your spouse. I know in the beginning none of us trust the betrayer, however even then somewhere deep inside of us, even if it’s just a whisper, we have to know if we are open to it. The reason I say this is because I have a friend whose husband cheated 17 years ago and she has told me that she wonders how her life would be if she had left. She admitted that she stayed in the beginning because she didn’t want the OW to win her husband. She admitted to me that she cheated on her husband 7 years after his affair to “get back at him”. She has her doctor test her for STD’s every year with her yearly exam.I simply do not want to be that person, ever. If I didn’t believe that I could work my way back to fully accepting my husband in my heart and trusting him completely, I would have been better off to just leave the marriage.

  5. Superb post! They all make sense to me but truth 5 resonates particularly as I can see my wife doing all the things that she’s always wanted to do, reinstating who she is and who she wants to be.

    • kayboo24 says:

      Sometimes I catch myself feeling bad about these things, and other times I’ve been a total bitch about them. I remember one time my husband told me he didn’t really like me doing a certain something that I was doing, to which I quickly snapped back by saying, well I didn’t particularly like you sticking your dick in someone else but you did. Later I felt really bad about that, it was the pain rearing it’s nasty little head. I guess I felt like my whole world was in a spin and the only thing I knew I had total control over was myself. I wanted to feel empowered because everything about how I felt with the affair just made me feel weak.
      Just remember that anger usually comes from the pain. I was/am very lucky that my husband has been very patient and understanding with how I have dealt with all of this.

      • I made the same sort of comebacks to Sweetheart in the early days. It was a way to have leverage in a fight if I wasn’t getting anywhere–I’m guessing. Right or wrong, good or bad, that is a common part of the repair and rebuilding process.

  6. Great words! I could have written this myself! Blessings!!

  7. Great post! You have nailed a lot of the feelings I have been struggling with since I found out about my wife’s affair. I have started a couple posts but have always stopped because I just can’t seem to find the right words. I have recently decided that one of the reasons that even after year I have not fully moved forward is that my wife wasn’t punished. When I say that I mean that foregiveness was quick, the situation was resolved quickly for her, and she set rules as far as when it could be brought up. And while our relationship has improved somewhat, not to where I think it should be based on the level of intensity that I out in it. I guess I still really don’t have the words.

    • kayboo24 says:

      I believe that “the right words” are the ones that you are feeling…even if after they are written they only make sense to you. I write this because it helps me reflect on the past 2 years and I can see how things have changed. Since I was the betrayed and my husband the betrayer he wasn’t allowed to make any rules for me. I have been very lucky that he has been 100% supportive in anything I need to heal. Sometimes though he doesn’t like to talk about it. I have seen him beat himself up for over 2 years because of his affair. Maybe your wife is struggling to make peace with what she has done and just doesn’t want the reminder. Another thing that could be happening is that she is in a kind of denial. My husband was like that probably for the first year post DDay. He helped me deal with my emotions but he completely shut down emotionally. It was almost like he thought if he didn’t think about it, then it didn’t happen. I remember telling him so many times, “You haven’t fully dealt with this yet, and eventually it’s going to smack you in the face.” Eventually it did, which just sent us sliding back a little bit. Good news is that he is coming through it with my help and now I realize that if we both would have been at rock bottom at the same time, things could have gotten very bad for us. It was better that we each really dealt with it at different times. Good luck with your struggle, keep your head up.

  8. TLM says:

    “I have been reading a lot of other blogs lately and I am so surprised to see how similar all of our situations are.”

    I wonder if cheaters realize just how much a cliche they are, how predictable the whole cycle is. It’s the same thing over and over and over again. The lies they tell their spouses, they lies they tell themselves, the careers they tank, the humiliation they expose their “loved ones” to, the lives they RUIN and for what? Something, that in the end, they didn’t really want anyway.

    The only thing I’d quibble with is the comment that remaining in your marriage is the bravest” thing to do. Obviously in your situation it was because there was so much to salvage. But sometimes it’s not; sometimes the bravest thing to do is to let go.

    Eh, don’t mind me. I’m just thinking out loud. I do that a lot.

    • kayboo24 says:

      I do agree that leaving may be the bravest thing for some people in certain situations. Just in my case staying was much harder to do, I am a very proud person, I don’t like being the victim. I didn’t like that he made me feel like our marriage had been a joke, and that for months he and his whore just sat back laughing at me. I know that never happened, it just felt like it to me.

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