Deception and Affair

SoEmptyOctober 20, 2011

My wife and I have been married for over three years now. Early in our marriage, she was so loving towards me, and always talking about how no one has ever cared for her like I have. She also would say she didn't feel she deserved it. I would always tell her she did and all the things I loved about her.

All our friends thought we were this perfect couple. But about a year ago, she started to pull away. It was very slow at first, and she was just starting a new career, and I had been advancing in mine, so I chalked it up to new stress and branching out.

She is a make up artist, so she really needed to network and get her name out there, so she was going to a lot of parties. At first, I was always invited, but little by little, I started not hearing about them, or just getting a text saying "going out tonight".

She met a male photographer and the two of them started working together a ton. He was really plugged into the fashion scene, and she had been doing mostly bridal work and really wanted to get into that side of the business.

On her birthday, (4 months ago) we went out with some friends. Most of them were her new fashion friends, but there were several regular friends of both of our too. She normally really goes crazy for her birthday, so it was no surprise that she got really drunk. But as the night went on, I noticed her dirty dancing with the photographer.

The next day I confronted her about it, and let her know it really made me uncomfortable, as well as embarrassed. She said she was just trying to include him and I was over reacting.

Over the next many weeks, they were working together more and more, and always texting and talking on facebook. I was getting really suspicious, but I still trusted her. I explained to her how I was feeling, and told her I felt we were drifting apart and I was afraid she was starting an emotional affair with him. She assured me it was just in my head and they just work a lot together.

More weeks went by, and things between us were becoming horrible. She was never home, hardly spoke to me, and never showed any affection. We talked about it countless times and she always said we just needed to get away and have some time to ourselves. So we planned a trip to another city for mid September.

The weeks leading up to the trip continued to be strained. And I began spying on her facebook and texts. I could tell texts were being deleted, as she would be having a conversation, but when I looked later that night there would be no recent text history. My suspicions grew, and again I confronted her. She again, denied anything, but my trust was fading.

The night before our trip was very bad. She was super distant and we argued about something stupid (don't remember now). I went to bed and she stayed up late. I couldn't actually sleep, and I was lying awake, so I set up her facebook on my phone. She was talking to the photographer. They were talking about a diet she was trying to get him to do and just normal stuff, but I kept reading their conversation.

And then, about 3 am, it happened. He messaged her "Are you alone... Can you touch yourself?" I lost it. I had been right all this time. I stormed into the other room and confronted her. She told me that a few weeks ago after a party she was drunk and they kissed, and that they had been flirting ever since, but she hadn't slept with him. I nearly left that night. Sometimes I still think I should have.

We talked all night, and I somehow ended up counseling her for hours. She had been abused as a child, sexually, and she had been seeing our therapist by herself for a little while. She said she hates herself, and that she knew no one could love her like me, but that she didn't deserve love.

Eventually, we decided to go on the trip still. It was emotionally taxing. Some great moments, and some very dark ones.

When we got back, she had decided to move out to "get some space and find herself". We had gotten home late, and I told her not to go, that things would only fade between us and escalate with the photographer, but she said she didn't want that, she just needed to clear her head. She was packing her bags when my first kidney stone ever struck me, and she took me to the hospital, and home the next morning, but still left.

I was in severe pain from the kidney stone for about five days. I barely heard from her. During that time, I met with the photographer, and told him she was vulnerable and confused (which he knew, she had been confiding everything in him for months), and I told him to respect her and our marriage. If she wanted to be with him, she could divorce me and do so, but she needed to make a committed decision. He agreed to stay away from her.

A few days after that (still in kidney stone pain) I found out from the friend she was staying with (a friend of both of ours) that she was hanging out with the photographer that day. I managed to track them down and confronted them together at a pub. She claimed he was being respectful and trying to help. I didn't believe it, but she said she would run if I kept hounding her.

Over the next month, we barely spoke. Occasionally she would call and say she loved me, and she wanted us to work, but then I wouldn't here from her again. She left the friend she was staying with over some sort of fight, and moved in with her sister, but I heard from her sister she was staying out all night and rarely coming home. I knew she was sleeping with him. Several time that we spoke, I asked her to be honest, that I deserved it. She always said nothing was happening.

Then one night I was hanging out with some friends and ran into a friend of hers. We talked about my wife, and I could tell her friend had something to say, but was conflicted. I asked straight out if she was sleeping with him, and the friend told me yes.

I tried to call my wife, but she didn't answer. I tried to call him, and he wouldn't. I sent him some hateful and threatening texts. Then I went home, drunk off my ass, and stared at a bottle of pills for hours, debating whether to kill myself or not. I finally decided if the douche bag photographer got to live, I should too.

The next morning she called but I didn't pick up. She called a friend of mine who told her I knew. She raced over to the house and confessed. She cried and begged and apologized. She said she had wanted to prove to me how bad and ugly inside she was. She wanted to make me not love her. I told her I couldn't trust her, that she had broken me, and awoken a rage in me I thought I had moved past years ago, but that I still loved her. I told her she deserved better that the darkness she had created around herself.

She agreed to go to my counseling appointment with me the next day, and there, we agreed that she should move back home and we would try and work it out. My two conditions were that she never speak to him again, and that she had to make actionable effort to try and rebuild trust.

It has only been a few days since she moved back in. She has been sleeping in another room, which doesn't bug me too much. But every day she is finding something to do that will keep her out so we only have a hour or two in the evening together. Whenever we talk, we just talk about how broken we are, as individuals and a couple. She has lied to me at every turn, and now that she is back, she seems like she doesn't want to be here. Beyond that, she gets upset over everything I do. She was mad that I told my three closest friends about what was going on, even though she had told people she has known less than a year. She was downright pissed when I asked her to get an STI test. Tonight, I raced off work to try and have dinner with her and a friend, and she seemed upset I was there the whole time. When we got home, the only time she talked to me was to ask me to chase off the bums digging through our trash.

I feel completely alone in this. I don't think she is trying. I feel like she has no affection or empathy for me, but I know she still does for the photographer.

I feel sick everyday, and I can't stop picturing them together in my head. I can barely look at her most of the time. But still I hold her and tell her she is worth while. I tell her she deserves to be happy, and I still want to be with her.

I do love her. I will always love her. But I don't know if I can survive this. I don't know how to live anymore.

If you read all of this, thank you. I would welcome any advise or insight.

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I think you are an absolutly lovely man.your amazing.She sounds like she has very low self esteem,and knows you will always be there.I Suggest you back off and appear to have given up,my bet is she will come running if she thinks she has lost you.Dont chase her anymore ,you are worth a million of her.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2011 at 5:05AM
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You've written an incredibly long description to total strangers in which you've mentioned suicidal thoughts twice. Stop what you're doing right now and avail yourself of a doctor or some intervention service. I mean it. Right now. You're in trouble. Acknowledge it and act on it.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2011 at 9:49AM
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Unless I missed it in your long post, you don't mention if you have kids, I assume (and hope) you don't, because from what I can tell, she's done with you....sorry to say that, but all the things you wrote in your post I lived thru with my ex. The txts, the wondering if she's cheating, talking to her about it and having her lie thru her teeth saying no, she's not interested in anyone else...only to finally put the pieces together, then to confront her and have her pull the "you're too good for me" BS...followed by more lies, and a half-assed attempt at working on the marriage, despite me sitting there like a f*cking fool, telling her I understood and that I was willing to get past it.....only to have her string me along for 3 more years, then go and do it again with another guy.

UGH! How I wish I just kicked her lying cheating butt out the door the first time around....but I had two young kids with her and didn't want to bust up the family. Looking back on it all, I don't regret not doing it, because at lease someday when my kids are older, I will be able to tell them I took the high road and gave her another chance in order to try everything possible to keep the family together.

But if I were in that position with no kids (which I suspect is exactly where you are), I would pull the plug on it right away rather than chase someone who clearly does not want to be caught.....

    Bookmark   October 20, 2011 at 3:00PM
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Well, we've only heard one side here. Beautifully written and intricately detailed, but it still doesn't really give us any insight into what the other person is feeling.

The best anyone can offer is the advice by Asolo--you need more help than any of us can give, and it needs to come from a professional who knows you and your history. PLEASE sit down with your therapist, your family dr. your clergyman--whoever you trust--and have them read this letter and help you get the kind of help you need.

BTW--hope the kidney stone problem was resolved. Been there (had 2 lithotripies just last year). Be careful, and follow your dr's recommendations so you don't have a repeat performance.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2011 at 11:29AM
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This is why so many people are living on antidepressents,because they run to the doctors every time they are feeling like this because of a relationship.Who hasnt felt depressed or even suicidal at times of their lives ?it doesnt mean he needs professional help,he will get over this and learn from it,its just life,and life chucks some pretty hard stuff at us at times,but you cant run to the doctor everytime.

    Bookmark   October 21, 2011 at 2:47PM
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I was thinking about some sage advice I would give my son, as he is moving out into the world away from my daily influence.

I thought.... " make sure the important decisions you make are always with common sense and not emotion"....was a good thing to say to him.

I would also say this to SoEmpty....make decisions about your future based on good common sense, and dispense with any emotional thoughts.

Hope that helps in some way.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2011 at 12:26AM
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Its your life, but frankly I think you are wasting it spending time with somebody who might end up pregnant. She is a rotten wife, and please don't think she would suddenly become a wonderful cookie baking mommy. If you think you feel bad now--wait until you have kids and she is dragging them around to be with a boyfriend. You will then get to see your kids being miserable as well as yourself.
Its hard to believe your entire family and all your friends have not told you this.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2011 at 10:24PM
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I am in counseling weekly. I want to live, so please don't worry about that.

My wife has moved out again. I told her I have no trust, and if she left, I would have to try and move on with my life without her, I would have to assume she was giving up. She still left, so I am just trying my best to move on. Going to file for legal separation.

I again told her I still love her and want to fight for her, but I can't be the only one fighting.

Thank you for your responses. It is nice to know even stranger care.

And yes, most of my family and friends hate her. I am so hurt, betrayed and broken, but I don't. She is a tormented woman, and I feel sorry for us. But i do not hate her.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2011 at 11:53PM
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Dude, you may feel that way now, but you are not "broken", your just a little wounded, but you are doing the right thing...move on with you'r deserve better.

It may feel like the end of the world right now, but still, look at the bright least you haven't kids with this woman yet. Can't tell you how many times I've thought to myself that I wish my ex pulled her "you're a great guy, but I need to find my soul-mate" crap BEFORE we had kids. I always told people that as much as divorce sucks, if it happened before I had kids, it would be no worse than breaking up with a girlfriend...except for some paperwork. You can just walk away from your ex and never look back. I on the other hand have to communicate with my ex daily in matters concerning the kids. I have to pick them up at the house that I busted my butt fixing up for years, that she kept in the divorce, and see her boyfriend's car in the driveway because he pretty much lives about making your blood boil. If you get out of this now, you can turn your back on her and never look back....I am in a way jelous of your position.

Oh, and the part about not hating will, trust hasn't sunk in yet how selfish her actions were, you're making excuses for her....I did this too, the first time my ex cheated on me. Now I know it was not anything I did or didnt do, nor was it that she was tormented or had a tough upbringing or what was because she is just a self-centered b*tch.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2011 at 10:34AM
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Ok, then, since you say suicide is off the table........

Never mind legal separation. Drop the hammer. Divorce her ASAP. Quick, quick, quick. She was damaged goods when you met her and she's been acting out for too long already. Unless you enjoy living life in a constant state of emotional turmoil, wrap this mistake up and move on. You can't save her, but why would you want to endure her? You don't have to hate her, IMHO, but I doubt you need this kind of self-interested weirdness in your life. You're wishing for a fantasy. The reality that she is will not yield to it.

There are plenty of normal women out there. They're all around you right now, actually. If you want a woman in your life, I'd suggest dumping this emotionally-crippled bag of trouble that's dragged you down with her and prepare yourself for a real woman. I'll bet everyone you know will be supportive if not rejoicing.

If you enjoy misery, please disregard.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2011 at 11:36AM
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Don't waste your money on a legal separation. Its just as much paperwork as a divorce, and costs the same. Many people don't complete it correctly because its harder to do than a divorce. 80% of the people who do one do not use an attorney. So when the spouse later files a bankruptcy or they owe taxes-- its a nasty surprise to discover that it affects you! It does make it easier to get over them when your paycheck is affected though.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 9:36PM
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I'm so sorry for the heartache you've been through, and I hope you're starting to feel better now.

The thing you're not seeing clearly is that your wife is simply *not* a good person. She simply doesn't have the kind of mature, stand-up character you need, want and deserve in a life partner. You gave her every chance to slow down, stop, then even reverse her history of bad actions. But did she? No. She knowingly continued down a path of cheating, lying and deception, knowing full well how much it would hurt you.

You say she is 'tormented' -- I say she's simply defective and broken.
I know there are reasons -- There are always reasons.
But the same reasons some people use to excuse bad behavior are used by others to explain why they would *never* act a particular way.

She's simply got a major character flaw where integrity ought to be. You can't fix her, and she doesn't seem to care enough to want to. So let her stay broken -- she will anyway -- and get out while there are still no kids.

And yeah - go straight for the divorce.

She'll come crawling back at some point with some half-true sob story about how much she regrets her actions. And you know, she actually *might* regret her actions at some point -- just not enough to make her a decent bet at not repeating them. Her behavior was not a one-time lapse by an otherwise upstanding and kind person. Remember that when you're tempted to give her "just one more chance". A character flaw is a character flaw, and hers is deep and wide.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2011 at 6:22PM
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I suppose the silver lining in all of this is that I am a writer, and all this heartache will feed my craft.

I talked with her the other day, and told her she can't live half in and half out. If she wants to make things work with me, I have conditions. One of which is obviously therapy with a trusted family counselor, the others aren't important at this point, they are all very manageable and less than the average person would probably want. I told her I am looking at behavior and action, not words and apologies.

She is taking the weekend to really dig deep and decide if she has the inner strength to deal with her issues or not. I have been very calm and surprisingly at peace this last week. I am very confident of the man I am, and proud of the strength and grace I found in myself. I know that however this turns out, it will not change me as a person, and I can still lead a happy life. I can't say the same is true for her.

If she comes to me next week with true effort for redemption, I will allow her back. With counseling and honest introspection I do believe she can become the person that embodies the good and conquers her demons. But if she strays, if I feel her efforts are insincere, I will walk. I will file for divorce and let her go, because as all of you have said, I cannot fix her, and I refuse to stand in this alone.

I feel strong and committed, that I could follow either path unflinching. It is her watershed moment, she will never have a better opportunity for love, commitment and happiness. It is her moment to seize though, not mine.

I know who I am. Without her, I am still the loving, kind, dedicated individual I always was, I just won't be a husband.

Thank you all for caring enough to reply. The support is very much appreciated. Real life friends have rallied to me as well, in numbers I didn't even realize I had. I know these people see value in me, and can respect my actions. I never took action I regret, and that gives me peace.

I am, and shall remain, me.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2011 at 11:21PM
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Well'll be fine. Good luck.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 10:36PM
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Assuming the clarity of your writing is indicative of your clarity of mind, I think you're in the right place. Hope she wakes up.

If you feel like coming back, I'd be interested in learning the outcome.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2011 at 10:34AM
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Please do not try to make it work with her. She abandoned you when you had trouble with kidney stones. What do you think she'll do if you suddenly became incapacitated at a time when you can't manage alone? She'd be out the door, that's what.

Life is too short to share it with a partner that doesn't care about your well-being. Let her go....there are other, more caring females out there that would love to be your partner.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2011 at 5:08PM
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Agree with the above post 100%. Actually thought about that topic the other day watching an ESPN documentary about Chris Herron, the basketball phenom from MA who's career was ruined and life was nearly ruined by was a good documentary, he's been clean 3+ years now so there is a bit of a feel-good aspect to it. But they had a lot of interviews with his wife (they have 3 kids too), and they sort of asked her if she ever was tempted to leave, and she said while the prospect did cross her mind, that this was her husband and that she took a vow for better for worse, and wouldn't leave him if he got cancer, so why would she leave him for this other disease (his addictions)?

And I'm sitting there thinking about how my wife cheated on me and left me because "the butterflies were gone" and "she felt I wasn't her soul mate"....ugh!

Should have really assessed her character before marrying her....if I think back, there were warning signs, I just ignored them...probably because there was never really a strong reason NOT to continue with the relationship, plus she was a hottie....but I realize now, that is not the way to approach it.

OP - please do yourself a favor and get away from her now. Don't look don't deserve someone like this....

    Bookmark   November 5, 2011 at 9:15AM
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I would think that if she wanted to be with you she would be. Since there is even a decision involved means the answer is forthright. That said, if she does chose to remain in the marriage you must forgive!! I see her lack of compassion in your kidney stone episode as a complete "I don't care about you" attitude. I see you as a very humble man and wish you the finest love with a woman who will love you so-be it this woman or a future wife. Her job thought will always be a temptation for her. So unless she gets the skills to manage stress and CHOSE the marriage, it is doomed.

Good luck, man give this to God and let him fix it for you!

    Bookmark   December 19, 2011 at 7:41AM
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Oh, please.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2011 at 9:37AM
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Is it really that easy to find someone else ?

My brother (55) and his ex wife, 54 are both still single after 4 years. They are good people, but have never found another love interest that suits.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2011 at 5:05PM
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