First Time To Post - Desperately Need AdviceMy husband and I have been married for thirty-eight years. We've been together for nearly forty years, since I was 16 years old. We played together on the playground as children. We have two wonderful children, three gorgeous grandchildren. My husband and I are best friends. We've always had the kind of relationship that others envied. We've always had "date night" every Friday night where we would just go somewhere, sit with a pitcher of beer, and talk and laugh for hours. We have continued to do this up into our 50's. People who would see us would always be surprised to hear we were married for so long. They thought we were on our first date. Some even said they suspected we were having an affair because of the way we were interacting with each other. Our kids have always used our relationship as a model for their own. They had a front-row seat their whole lives to see the tender, unselfish, respectful way we treated each other. We very rarely even had a cross word, let alone an argument. He's my soul mate and I love him with every part of my being. My husband would always describe me to people as "pretty much perfect" as a wife. My family would always tell me they could tell how much he adored me by the way he looked at me when I would walk across the room. I've always gone to great lengths to take care of my health, my looks, my body, and I've done that out of respect for him.
A few years ago we started experiencing some pretty serious financial difficulties. I bring this up because this is the reason that my husband is giving for what happened. (The woman he's involved with is very wealthy) About a year and a half ago, my sweet, unselfish, non-materialistic husband turned into an entirely different person. He was suddenly very critical of me, withdrew from me and from the kids. Most times when our grandchildren would come over, he would just go in the bedroom and take a nap. In the middle of our financial difficulties, he bought a two-seater sports car. Talked non-stop about what failures we are. My response to him was always that as long as we were together, I didn't care what house I lived in or what kind of car I drove, what kind of possessions I had, that I felt very lucky because I had a wonderful husband, beautiful, healthy children and grandchildren, that I had a relationship with my husband that others envied, even after this many years, and I really didn't need any more in life than that.
About six months ago, I noticed that he was using an extremely large amount of minutes on his cell phone. When I looked at the call detail, there were tons and tons of calls to one number. When I called it, it was a woman's voice on the machine. When I confronted him, he told me who it was and said, in these exact words, "It's (NAME) and I'm leaving you to be with her." I was so shocked that I collapsed to the floor. He started spouting off this list of things that he hates about me and said he didn't love me anymore. He said he didn't think I loved him anymore. Said all kinds of things that I couldn't believe I was hearing.
I know this woman. He's worked with her for nearly 25 years. She's very attractive. I went to her 50th birthday party a couple of years ago. She's been married to her husband for 37 years, but he's always treated her badly.
Because I was so emotionally devastated, I went to stay with my sister for a few days. When I came home, he asked me to stay to try to work things out. We've been trying to do that for the last five months. For the first three months, I kept catching him talking to her on the phone. They both bought pre-paid cell phones that they were hiding. When I caught him with it, he smashed it. But then I caught him with another one. He's telling me that they've both realized that what they were doing is wrong, but that he still has an "attachment" to her. He said he wants to get her out of his life, but he needs to do it in his own way, that he couldn't just cut off complete contact with her. He's insisting that she's telling him he needs to stay with his family and that she needs to do the same. For the past two months, he says they have had no contact, but I am suspecting that isn't true. He and she both have insisted that their relationship wasn't a physical one, which I also have my doubts about, but they are adamantly denying that they've ever been intimate.
I want so badly to mend things with my husband and get back to where we were, and at times I feel like that can happen, but at other times I'm not sure. His idea of moving forward is to never talk about it, pretend it didn't happen and just move forward. There are just so many questions that I have. So many things just don't make sense. I hate to just throw away what we had, after 40 years, without really giving it a shot, but is it really possible to recover from something like this, especially when in some ways I don't even know what I'm actually forgiving him for? I'm terrified that maybe he's staying with me just to keep me quiet so that they don't lose their jobs. Or maybe I'm just being paranoid. When I first found out about the other woman, I confided in a good friend. She knows people at his place of emloyment and it ended up getting all over the workplace that they were having n affair. They almost lost their jobs. I'm lost and sick and heartbroken. I went from 115 pounds to 95 pounds in two months. I cry every single day of my life. I'm having horrible nightmares where I wake up screaming. My husband has trouble having sex with me. He says it's because I've gotten so thin and it makes him feel guilty.
My husband does not believe in counselors and won't even talk about it. Because of his job, he has had contact with dozens of counselors on the and has lost complete faith in them. He says they always pick their favorite and everything is ba
I don't know why I'm even joining this forum. I guess just to vent. My self-esteem has gone to zero, I've withdrawn from my family. My kids have both told me they think I should leave my husband. They're at a really bad place with him not only because they found out about the affair, but also the way he's treated them and me over the last year and a half. They think I should let him go and and let him find out what he's lost, because until then, he'll always wonder if he should have gone with this other woman and he'll never have the respect for me that they say I deserve. I'll be honest -- at times I do get the feeling that he thinks I should just shut up and be thankful that he's still here. I keep trying to decide if I can live my life knowing that he feels that way. But when I think of the alternative, I can't live with that either. He's started to leave a few times, usually when I'm trying to discuss our problems, and I always fold and beg him to stay. I know -- I'm pathetic.
At times my husband seems remorseful. He sobs and holds me and tells me how sorry he is. Sometimes he just looks at me and bursts into tears. That's the person that I've loved and been married to all these years. But then it's like a switch goes off some days and he's cold and rude when I try to talk to him about things. He's having terrible temper flares, usually when we try to talk about what happened, and will get in my face and scream at me. Is it just guilt for what he did -- or is it because he's still involved with her?
I'm so confused and miserable, to the point that I'm seriously considering suicide. I'm sure what everyone will tell me is that I need to let him go, but I can't imagine my life without him. He's truly a part of my being and I feel like a piece of me is already dead. My husband and I have always talked about the fact that we would be one of those couples that, when we got old and died, the other one would die shortly thereafter. I know now that was very true, at least for me, because I really don't want to go on living if he's not in my life. I'm desperate for some relief or some advice, and maybe it will help to get advice from someone other than family and friends.
Sorry for the book, but it's very difficult to explain what's going on in just a few words.