I'm having an affair

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Posted 9/24/2012 by messed_up_me in NSBR Board
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Luvnlifelady
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:21:20 PM
My DH had an affair, but we survived. I think you can too.

Of course your relationship with the boyfriend is fantastic, you rarely see each other. I bet if you had the drudgery of day to day with him (childcare, bills, househould chores, etc.), you'd be singing a different tune. It's all fantasy and romance right now, not frustrations over socks "almost in the hamper."

Good luck. If you are at all spiritual, I recommend "Retrouvaille" through the Catholic church. You don't have to be Catholic to go (I'm not), but it was very helpful to us. It's for troubled marriages.

ETA: I have a friend who connected to a past flame on "Classmates" and FB. She then divorced her husband, took 3 of her 4 kids, and moved across the country to be with him. Yah, she was back soon after, but the damage was done.



TraceyS
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:22:01 PM

Your kids will find out, probably in an angered fight between you two. Your kids WILL be upset with you because YOU broke up their home. (Kids don't always have the maturity to see things differently that effect them.) Your kids will more than likely carry a cheating spouse bag to their relationships. That's the price of not dealing with the affair and telling your spouse.


That's how my then 15 year old daughter found out. She was disgusted with the father she adored and rather than try to repair his relationship with her, he chose to walk away. He sent her about three or four text messages over the course of six months after moving out....when she didn't respond, he did nothing further. He has no relationship with her today. He didn't watch her graduate from high school, be awarded a full scholarship to college (or help with ANY expense after the day she turned 18), or move into her dorm. I hope that she will forgive him someday; I encourage that, but she isn't ready. Even if she does, I know her well enough to know that she will never look at him again as she did once. There are some things that can never be undone.

sugarcoated
StuckOnPeas

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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:22:05 PM

Here's the thing. You're dating a cheater. A cheater who has encouraged you to stop things with him while you work on your marriage. Take out the marriages, and you're left with an anecdote for "He's Just Not that Into You." So, do not even factor your shiny new toy relationship into your decision making process.

Everything is not fair, equal and sparkle inducing in life. You made a mistake when you just assumed things were over when you "left" your marriage. If you had bothered to research things, talk to other wives, etc., you would have learned that going through a period of not feeling "love" for your spouse is common and normal. It's climbing that mountain and getting to the other side that makes marriages stronger and you get to the actual good part. You want fresh love and tickles each and every day, then read Harlequin romances. You want grown up and real, don't you? Well, you have to earn it. You'll find that it is much more satiating.

Go find your happy - with yourself. Figure out what is lacking in you that would make you not even try to connect with the person you vowed to always be with. After you work on yourself, then you'll be better prepared to face your marriage and make decisions. It could very well be that you need to make a break, but you make that break fully aware of yourself and not because some guy has you all atwitter.






Sharna_G
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:23:14 PM
And this break from each other was his idea. Not mine. I wanted to continue on like we have been. It was his suggestion that I stop to work on my marriage.
------------------------------------------------------
That is a definite sign that he's not willing to change his life at this time.
________________

This bears repeating. Your posts sound like you assume that if you leave your husband, you'll end up happily ever after with New Guy. This man is NOT leaving his wife for you.
Make your decision with that fact in mind. You may end up a single parent and more unhappy than you could ever imagine.


~~Sharna
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Dalai Mama
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:24:50 PM

Here's the thing. You're dating a cheater. A cheater who has encouraged you to stop things with him while you work on your marriage. Take out the marriages, and you're left with an anecdote for "He's Just Not that Into You." So, do not even factor your shiny new toy relationship into your decision making process.
Right? A man who would do anything to spend the rest of his life with you doesn't encourage you to work things out with your husband.


Jo Mama

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momofkandn
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:25:00 PM
Falling in love is easy. We do it all the time. We do it with the wrong people all the time. And when we are lucky we fall in love with the right ones. Just the fact that you fell in love with someone does not mean that it will last. It doesn't mean that it is right. And it doesn't mean that it's worth wrecking your current marriage.

Affairs are like addictions in the feelings they create and the chemical reaction in our bodies. Should we allow a drug addict or alcoholic to keep using because it feels so good?

You need time and space from the affair to really assess your feelings. And remember, that feelings for someone you've known for years will never, ever have that giddy, just fell in love feel to them. The love you and your husband can share is so much deeper and so much more giving than what you have with your affair partner.

Plus, your affair partner hasn't expressed any interest in a long term relationship with you. I really hope you aren't basing your decision about your marriage thinking this guy will be there for you when you divorce. He probably won't no matter what he says now. The fact that he broke it up says a lot.

People who have affairs are broken inside. You need to fix yourself first before you reconcile or start a new relationship. The stats on an affair turning into a long lasting relationship are dismal. Something like 3%. Are you really willing to divorce your husband, destroy life for your children as they know it, create all kinds of hurt in your family and his, for a 3% chance? Stop focusing on who you are "in love" with. And start focusing on what is broken inside you that made you cheat.

There is a cheater's playbook. Almost all cheaters follow it, using the same words, excuses and justifications. They say and think the same things. So far you are following it step by step. The next step is that your husband will find out. You may deny it at first but then you will confess. He will be crushed. You will leave and try to have some kind of relationship with a married guy 1000 miles away. And in most cases, that ends up a huge disaster and the biggest mistake of your life.

If however, you come clean with your husband an express your deep remorse you have a chance at fixing this mess. Whether you reconcile or divorce, you have to have that resolution before stating any new relationship. And if this affair partner really is the right one for you, you will come back together when you are both ready. Right now neither of you are ready.

Epeanymous
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:25:32 PM
I don't know. I think often people tell spouses about affairs for the purpose of provoking a breakup, so I see both sides of the "tell" argument if the stated goal is working on the marriage.

I don't have personal experience with divorce (my own or my parents, eg) so take what I say for what it's worth as an observer of other peoples' divorces. I've seen a lot of people get out of early, childless marriages and be much happier in a second marriage. I think for some people it takes a foray into marriage, however briefly, to understand what marriage is about and what the person actually wants from it, and I think people who are unhappy and divorce childlessly after a year or two of marriage are in one position. THe other position, however, is yours, which is a lengthy marriage with kids. Most of the people I've seen who divorce under those circumstances and remarry end up with a lot of the same issues in the second marriage. Dating someone is much different than being married to them. I imagine in your heart of hearts you know that.

In your position I would really try to make my current marriage work. Counseling, forgiveness, effort, whatever it took. I wouldn't stay if I tried all of that and still was miserable in my marriage, but I would give it a sincere try. Forget the other guy. The harsh truth is that if he wanted you he wouldn't have told you to go back to your husband. Again, I think in your heart of hearts you know that. You are choosing between your current marriage and the unknown. And I am telling you that in the long term the unknown is likely to look a lot like your current marriage, so work on the issues that are bothering you now.

purpledaisy
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:26:26 PM

I might get flamed for this but you know what you are doing is wrong. You have made a conscious decision to do this. I'm sorry your marriage is on the skids. You should have gone to your husband and told him how you feel before you acted.

I'm not going to flame you because you said want I wanted to say, only much more nicely.

That I'm getting some attention and am in love for that reason alone. I can totally understand that. But in my heart it's not. We are in love, it's real. I don't know, maybe the fact that we've known each other makes a difference. I'm in my mid 40's. Have had my share of relationships, young love, living in la la land. This isn't that. I love my H but am not in love. And I feel so guilty for that.
And I really can't find a nice way to say this, you're full of crap. True love is a decision first, the feelings are not always going to be there. There are moments that I don't "feel" the love for my husband. But I still love him, because when we stood and said our vows we made a decision to love. For the rest of our lives. You made that commitment to your husband. What you are doing right now is wrong and cowardly! I could keep going, but I'm going to stop right there.


Becca

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MochiMochi
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:39:25 PM
This part made me think of something:


We are in love, it's real. I don't know, maybe the fact that we've known each other makes a difference. I'm in my mid 40's. Have had my share of relationships, young love, living in la la land. This isn't that.


That knowing each other thing, that's pretty powerful stuff. There was a whole thing about "retrosexuals" a few years back - people who reconnected with HS beaus or college BFs and destroyed their lives under the spell of recognition and infatuation and reconnection. When they came up for air, they discovered that it wasn't that magical, they were just really moved by that reconnection thing. It has a strange effect on people. It might not be as wonderful of a connection as you think.

This retro-reconnect thing happened to me, and I thought all the things you're saying. I believed it at the time, and I'm not normally a very romantic person. As my friends say, "It poked my crazy." And it totally snowed me.

And with marriage, I think two things: first the 80/20 - lots of people cheat because they get 80% of their needs met in the marriage, and they're bored and restless and find 20% elsewhere. For a moment, they have 100% and they think, "I'll leave the marriage and this other person will be 100%!" But most relationships are 80/20, and the new one won't be any different. Hint: the 20% is an inside job.

Second, I think the other person in a relationship deserves all the information about things that impact the relationship. So I'd say, tell your husband what's happened and where you are - you may as well or you'd be "rebuilding" your marriage on a lie, and there's no point trying to save it if you aren't going to be real with him.

My 0.02, worth exactly that. Good luck OP.

Menjiness
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:42:11 PM
Here is my thought with out reading this entire thread. If you have not had sex in 6 years, Do you think it is possible your husband has the same things going on?

Something to think about.

peapermint
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:47:09 PM
Firstly,


And this break from each other was his idea. Not mine. I wanted to continue on like we have been. It was his suggestion that I stop to work on my marriage.


This is a BIG RED FLAG from the other guy. He is not being courteous and understanding; he is trying to put some distance between to, take responsibility off of himself, or something else self-serving.

Secondly, I know you know you didn't do things "right" or in the right order or whatever. The question now is, where do you go from here?

I think you should see a counselor privately. Get some feedback from him/her on how to tell your husband about the affair -- if at all. I would lean toward not, but I have heard that "completely honesty" is the typical policy.

A huge factor is the pre-existing problems in your marriage. Why hadn't you had sex in 6 years? Were you not interested, was he turning you down, etc.

I agree the first priority should be the kids. If you can suck it up until they are grown at least. And if this other guy is your soulmate or whatever, he should wait for you. Even if you're miserable, deserve to be happy, etc., I think you just have to subjugate yourself for the kids and work on your marriage as best you can, unless there is abuse or some other factor.

*christine*
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:49:24 PM
I agree with so many others who have said that if this other man is encouraging you to work on your marriage, that's a big red flag for you that he's not ready to move forward in a relationship with you - aka - not willing to lose/leave his wife and family.

Another thing I would recommend is for you to look back and realistically remember why things did not work out between the two of you? Add to whatever issues you had 15-20 years ago, children, ex-es, debt, jobs, extended family, the fact that you live miles away from each other. At what expense do you think you could make this relationship work (if he really wanted you) at this point?

I'm not saying you should stay with your husband if you honestly feel that relationship is over. But even if you decided to divorce - your children should come first - for both you and their father. You can't pick up and move miles away from everything they know when you're breaking up their family.


~Christine~

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JenKate77
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:51:18 PM

The grass may or may not be greener on the other side, but once you're over there, you can't come back.


And THAT grass still needs to be mowed. And watered. It's still grass.


shiny new toy relationship


Such a good description!


Melmag
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Posted: 9/24/2012 12:52:30 PM

There are moments that I don't "feel" the love for my husband. But I still love him, because when we stood and said our vows we made a decision to love. For the rest of our lives. You made that commitment to your husband.

Exactly. Those vows aren't for the days when you're crazy in love; those vows are for the times when you're not. In effect, the vows are saying that "even if I don't always feel head-over-heels for you, I will remain your partner--you can count on me!" It's not just "I'll love you until I don't."


May your day be more beautiful than a unicorn farting rainbows!

onlywork2scrap
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:00:53 PM
Chances are if he leaves one for you he will leave you for one. That's how cheaters are. I'm trying to say this nice-now you are a cheater too. Stop and ask yourself if that's who you really are. There is no gray, it's clearly black or white. You are or you're not a cheater.

Think about what you are doing. When you don't hear nice things at home and someone else is telling you nice things it's tempting. That doesn't justify cheating.


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Ms. GreenGenes
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:04:36 PM

Everyone here will say, divorce first, then move on, and in an ideal world, that's what would happen. But it didn't happen that way and while it's not something to be proud of, I also felt like I deserved to be happy. (I know, I know, everyone here will say that it's "selfish" but don't we all have to look after ourselves and what is good and healthy for us?)



I cannot speak for anyone but myself, but my belief is that looking *only* after ourselves and looking for what is "good and healthy" for *us* generally leaves a pile of hurt people in our wake. Creating a healthy marriage is one thing. Deciding that "good and healthy" is found outside the marriage vows is quite another, IMV.

As for the tell/don't tell, I can only reiterate what someone else said. Should you "fix" your marriage but not tell him, you will live in constant fear that he finds out. And when he does, because these things always seem to come to the surface eventually, he's going to view the entire marriage as a sham. It creates an immediate distrust, and often it becomes an irreparable crack in a marriage.

In order to have a firm foundation, you can't have cracks. No lies, no skeletons, nothing but solid trust and honesty. If you're going to rebuild, do it on a firm foundation, or expect to be in a similar situation in the future.


~ Tracey

shannoninkc
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:05:13 PM
Find a really, really good counselor and listen to them. Not a bunch of people on the internet.

Big hugs to you, btw...and good luck.

icedpea
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:05:24 PM
Here is my thought with out reading this entire thread. If you have not had sex in 6 years, Do you think it is possible your husband has the same things going on?

^^^^^

I thought this too, just didn't want to say it.


*kaleidoscope*
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:14:01 PM

I don't know. I think often people tell spouses about affairs for the purpose of provoking a breakup, so I see both sides of the "tell" argument if the stated goal is working on the marriage.


I agree with this. I think sometimes they want to be found out. To provoke a breakup and/or make the other person jealous in a twisted ego boost.

I also agree with other people who said he's didn't tell you to work on your marriage because he's a nice guy. He's either decided to work on his own or has another 'love' interest.



messed_up_me
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:35:23 PM
I know most of you people won't believe this. But him telling me to try and figure out my marriage is not a red flag to me. It's hard to explain on here to a bunch of strangers that I know his intentions are pure and good. Because all you;re seeing is a douche bag. I'm sure I'm a douche bag in your eyes as well.

What I'm really struggling with is...in my heart I feel like I'm done in this marriage. Someone brought up that maybe H is also cheating. He may have. I don't know. As I said in my OP, we just had a real conversation for the first time in years. So maybe something will come out also from his end....

Part of me doesn't want to tell him about the affair because I don't know if this is going to work or if I even want to make it work anymore. So what would be the point of telling him and hurting him for nothing? On the other hand, how do I know this won't work? If I'm giving it an honest effort...I know I should lay everything out on the table. I'm just not sure I want to make the effort. I'm sure I'll get flamed for saying that...

I'll definately check out that website some of you referred to.. thanks.

Dalai Mama
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:41:21 PM

Part of me doesn't want to tell him about the affair because I don't know if this is going to work or if I even want to make it work anymore. So what would be the point of telling him and hurting him for nothing?
Please don't try to convince us that you're not telling your husband because you don't want to hurt him. A wife who is concerned with her husband's feelings doesn't sleep with another man in the first place.


Jo Mama

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Gem Girl
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:47:34 PM
I've read all of the responses, & I might as well throw my thoughts in there; excuse me while I'm frank with you.

First, I don't know how old your children are, but chances are that they may already know what's going on--or at least that something is badly wrong--if they're more than 6 or so. I know I did in similar circumstances at that age. And they're not blaming you--YET--they're thinking, "If only I were a better kid, if only we kids didn't fight so much, am I going to have to choose which one to live with?, etc." and worse, & it's tearing them up. Instead of coming from a broken home, they're living in one.

As for the real & magnificent love you're claiming you've got with Cheatey Boy, roses only sprout from manure outdoors, not in hearts & minds. A blessed love can't originate in deceit & the destruction of innocent lives. Real love, the kind that you want to model for your children, is the kind that made your husband get up & go to work every day for 15 years to provide for you & the family, whether he felt like it or not. It's what made him feed the little ones as best he could when you had the flu. It's what made him give you some space while you were daydreaming about another man as you passed him in the hallway & ignored his needs.

You could really use some counseling, perhaps from somebody with a pickax long enough to dig up any remnant of a conscience you may have remaining & make you take a look at it. Your husband may not be blameless (although your children certainly are), but nothing you've described makes him worthy of the selfish, shoddy treatment to which you've been subjecting him.

Furthermore, you'd better be very, very clear about your motivations before you decide to possibly devastate him with the news of your affair. I don't believe that you're objective nor considerate enough to make that determination by yourself at this point. But, since you're good at thinking of your own interests first, have you considered that infidelity looks really bad in divorce proceedings, & might lead to his being in a significantly advantageous position should he throw you out on your ear, as he'd have every right to do?

Well, I've wagged my finger at you enough, but these were things that hadn't been addressed. I hope everyone comes out of this with less hurt than the road looks headed towards....


----------------------------------------------------------------------
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MNshotz
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:48:59 PM
I also have not read ALL of the responses.. But, if this is a real post... I personally think you sound done and like you are looking for an 'ok' to get out. If you wanted to stay in this relationship, you wouldn't sound like you are looking for any reason to leave. LEAVE. Be an adult, take what little self respect you have, and respect for your spouse, and let them know that you do not want to be married. It sounds like you are just waiting for them to leave you. Who stays in a loveless marriage anymore? You've had an affair. If you wanted to work on the marriage you wouldn't be coming hear sounding like you don't know what to do.



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2peafaithful
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:49:30 PM
Your marriage doesn't have a shot if you don't walk away from this other man. It does have a chance if you walk away, NO contact and move on from him. It will be hard work, take time and won't be perfect BUT there is hope.

My ex decided after about 2-3 years he wanted to try and get back together. He wasn't with the other woman for a short period of time, we started counseling but then they got back together. Not a shot if you are going to continue with the other man.

bugluver
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:53:47 PM
"If you are at all spiritual, I recommend "Retrouvaille" through the Catholic church. You don't have to be Catholic to go (I'm not), but it was very helpful to us. It's for troubled marriages."

I will second this suggestion.
I wished my sister would divorce her DH before they did Retrovaille.

I cannot believe the difference this program made for my sister and her DH! They are better people for it and have a 100 times better marriage after attending this program.

There was not cheating but there were other very big problems in their marriage that were always there but amplified witht he twists and turns life throws at you thru the years.

For the sake of your children please be selfless and try to work thru things. Even if you do not stay together in the end you will be better off in the long run having tried. Your kids deserve to see you try.

Me GOP
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Posted: 9/24/2012 1:59:00 PM
I don't see anyone a douche bag. I see two people who are exercising VERY poor boundaries selfishly for themselves and others because they are either too immature, afraid, lazy, or brave enough to stand up for what is right.

PEA chemicals or the "love chemical" is Dopamine. If you go on the websites, you will be ASTOUNDED at how many people say the EXACT same story as what you presented here. I mean nearly down to the letter.

Our "love" is different. This is my soulmate. Etc. Etc. Etc.

Fact: 95% of extramarital affairs are over within 2 years of beginning.

Fact: Of the 5% that do last, 2% of those are still intact after five years.

Fact: More than 1/2 of married couples who divorced due to infidelity, regretted doing so and not working it out with their spouse 5 years later.

It doesn't matter if you are 40/50 or 80. Dopamine is brain drug that can be intoxicating. You will rewrite marriage history to keep this man in your head. You will rationalize your behavior like an addict on dope.

There are many, many articles regarding this phenom. If you read them, and think "well, WE are different" then you ARE under the drug.


Tracey

MochiMochi
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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:01:09 PM

Part of me doesn't want to tell him about the affair because I don't know if this is going to work or if I even want to make it work anymore. So what would be the point of telling him and hurting him for nothing?


You mean why make a mess for yourself at home when you don't have a sure thing lined up elsewhere? That's basically what you're saying here. No point in dealing with his tears and anger when you might be stuck with him for awhile longer?

That's unfortunate. If you feel done, do what you need to do, but take responsibility for your actions. It feels better than lying and sneaking around, it really does.

tifftiff2
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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:04:17 PM
I haven't read the other comments, but have my two cents:

Marriage isn't all rainbows and unicorns and fluffy puppies. Marriage is hard. Marriage is work. I don't buy the people that tell you "if it's true love it's easy." That's garbage. Two different people combining their lives into one is difficult. And when the excitement and newness wears off after a few years, it takes work.

I have a fantastic marriage. And I say that not to try to rub it in anyone's face. I say that because I've been to the edge and back too. There have been times where I didn't know if we were going to make it. Whether it was my husband's fault or my own, things happen, anger exists, feelings get hurt, whatever. And while I haven't ever been in your situation and neither one of us has had an affair, we have been in a situation where we had to decide if we were going to make our marriage work.

But we chose to try. We made the decision, together, that we were going to do things differently. So even when I had a horrible day at work, and all I wanted to do was be a bitch and take it out on him, I forced myself not to. I forced myself to put a smile on my face and walk in the door, go straight to him, and give him a kiss. We make it a point to say "I love you" often. The more we do, the more we feel. The more we make the time to make our feelings and our marriage a priority, the stronger our marriage grows. We will be celebrating our anniversary in October, and I cannot believe how strong our relationship is right now compared to where it was a year ago.

You failed your husband. As a wife, you let him down in the most intimate and hurtful ways that you could. You need to realize that. I'm not trying to be mean, but honest.

But I ask, did you talk to him? Years ago, did you talk to him about how you felt? Did you talk to him about how you felt you were drifting away? Did you seek counseling? Long before this affair ever took place, what course of action did you take to save your marriage? You didn't ruin your marriage with the affair. That was just the icing on the cake (for lack of a better term). You let your marriage go by not giving it your all at saving it when you realized you were unhappy years ago.

Life is too short to be unhappy. I firmly believe that. But you made a commitment many years ago that you would spend your life being happy with your husband. You hurt him and your children. And you have a man that even though you feel doesn't love you wants to stay and work out this mess with you. I'd say you're pretty damn lucky.

I won't tell you what I think you should do. Only you can make that choice. You are about to go to hell and back either way. I hope you understand that you did it to yourself. And when you realize that, I'll be here to put my arms around your shoulders and tell you that I wish all the best for you. Because I do. I don't think you need to be shunned or flamed or anything else. But you do need to realize that you didn't work at your marriage long before this affair ever happened. I'm not surprised when someone has an affair after they say they were unhappy. What saddens me is how few ever tried to correct the situation before it got to that point.

Good luck. ((hugs))


~Tiffany


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UkSue
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:05:52 PM
TraceyS what you said about your daughter brought tears to my eyes. She was changed forever when her view of her father was irrevocably changed. My 2 stepsons are in a terrible mess following years of cheating by their mother, even after she split with my husband. Her selfishness knows no bounds- her while life is spent in the pursuit of her own happiness and the needs of those 2 boys never crossed her mind.

OP, I am with all of those who think you are making a terrible mistake. You are basing your future on a fantasy. Real life is with your husband- if he still wants you when he knows about the affair. I am not judging you and wish you luck, but my real prayers are for your children and husband.


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tifftiff2
StuckOnPeas

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:09:18 PM
Double post. Sorry.


~Tiffany


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tifftiff2
StuckOnPeas

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:20:48 PM

I know most of you people won't believe this. But him telling me to try and figure out my marriage is not a red flag to me. It's hard to explain on here to a bunch of strangers that I know his intentions are pure and good.


That's the thing about red flags. Some people still don't see them. Even though they are big. And red.

He is pushing you away. It's one thing when we push away the ones we love and we know they will come back. He has no clue that you will come back. Which means he's perfectly ok if you don't. That's not a reflection of his character or his level of douchey-ness. It just means that he's trying to put a gap in between you two. I'm so, so sorry that you don't see it. It really makes my heart hurt for you.


~Tiffany


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*christine*
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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:28:02 PM
10 years ago if a friend had some to you and said her husband was cheating; if a male co-worker were cheating on his spouse or if you'd found out your dh was cheating on you, would you have thought theam a douche?

Your opinion is greatly tainted right now by the situation you're in and the feelings you have for this other man. I don't think anyone here is really trying to slam you as we are trying to get you to see the reality of the situation because we have no emotional involvement in it - we don't even "know" you. You're going to unleash a world of hurt on a lot of people through the situation you've created. Your kids, his kids, your marriage, his marriage. Even if you and he find happiness - a lot of other people are going to be hurt in the process. Sometimes as adults we have to be the adult and do what's right for those we love and not just think of ourselves. If you're truly unhappy in your marriage and you don't want to work on it, fine. Get a divorce and make sure your kids are ok before you confuse them with additional adult relationships that they won't be able to trust or understand.


~Christine~

If we weren't all crazy we would go insane!!!

peapermint
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:34:24 PM

That's the thing about red flags. Some people still don't see them. Even though they are big. And red.

He is pushing you away. It's one thing when we push away the ones we love and we know they will come back. He has no clue that you will come back. Which means he's perfectly ok if you don't. That's not a reflection of his character or his level of douchey-ness. It just means that he's trying to put a gap in between you two. I'm so, so sorry that you don't see it. It really makes my heart hurt for you.


I agree.

Please see a counselor! And don't trust affair-guy. Affair-guy does not have your back. Affair guy is looking out for himself. I 99% guarantee it. Hear me now and believe me later. XO

justalittletike
AncestralPea

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:35:10 PM
My thing is cheating is cheating and if you feel you need to cheat then do your husband a favor and tell him you want a divorce. If you honestly just made a mistake I do believe that does happen.

Even if your relationship doesn't move forward with this guy, you obvious don't care for your husband that way anymore. I don't necessarily think marriage IS always about love and can turn into a business transaction but, I personally still won't/ don't think cheating is acceptable behavior.

And I didn't read all the responses but, YES I could go on like that unless he cheated. I personally believe marriage is for life. I am not even religious, just raised by two people who always make it work no matter what phase they are going through. To me that is true love.


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StuckOnPeas

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:35:53 PM

I know most of you people won't believe this. But him telling me to try and figure out my marriage is not a red flag to me. It's hard to explain on here to a bunch of strangers that I know his intentions are pure and good. Because all you;re seeing is a douche bag. I'm sure I'm a douche bag in your eyes as well.


I don't think he is a douche. I do not think you are one either. (Well, I didn't until you tried to pull the "pure and good intentions" - I mean really? I almost have to think you are a douche now, because I would really hate to think you are simply just that stupid and gullible) Anyway, I just think you're human. He might not be anymore aware of the implication of his statement than you are. But you put this situation before people who have experience. We're not just being bitches. We've been around, you know? We've gained the wisdom of experience. Isn't that why you asked us in the first place?

So, let me ask you:

What makes you think you are so different than any other "other woman?" You're waiting around like one, right?
He is not making any move for you, right?
Do you really want a guy by default (i.e., he'll only leave his wife if she rejects him after finding out about the affair)?

Maybe we don't all outline our experience before giving you are thoughts. You wanted a BTDT response. So, I'll give you one from the cheated on wife: he comes home to me; he still says he loves me; and, get this, we still have sex. Actually, more sex, in every way shape and form. Okay, its probably because he's subconsciously trying to pretend he's not with you, but like I know that, right? The thing is he is lying to you when he says I "don't do that". My jewelry box is sporting some more gold and diamonds. I love, love, love not having to cook as much because every time he's been with you, even if it is because he takes me out to make up for it. Because remember, I don't know that. When you finally tell your husband because you think mine is going to tell me and I'm gonna dump him so you both can ride off into the sunset. Guess the hell again. Your husband called me. I said thank you and called a marriage counselor. Then me and my husband went to counseling, worked out our problems and have been together ever since. Last we heard you were in rehab and had lost custody of your kids. The only reason we know this is because you called our house from rehab and cried into our answering machine about it. We were sincerely sad for you.

I tell you all this because I can assure you that my outcome is much more common than the one you are fantasizing about. Can it happen for you? Sure. But are you willing to bet your life?






likescarrots
BucketHead

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:36:45 PM

What I'm really struggling with is...in my heart I feel like I'm done in this marriage.


So here's your option. Tell your new boyfriend that you're leaving your husband and children, and you want him to leave his wife (and children?) to be with you. See where it gets you. I'm guessing it's not going to go where you want it to go.

peapermint
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:45:35 PM

What I'm really struggling with is...in my heart I feel like I'm done in this marriage.


Here's another angle. Try thinking of it like this. Don't imagine that you are choosing between your marriage with DH and a relationship with this other guy. Imagine that you are choosing between your marriage with DH and NO relationship; no other guy. You are on your own, financially and romantically. You are in the dating pool, starting over at 40 -- or maybe not. Maybe you're still in love with other guy, but he doesn't want you long-term like you thought, so you are not only alone but you cannot see a romantic future with anyone else because you are still in love with Other Guy. But he won't have you. And now there's no chance of working on your marriage and keeping your family intact because you've left your DH. Would you still choose not to at least TRY to work it out with DH?

Nantini
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:50:56 PM
Wait, he's married and now pushing you to try and save your marriage? Oh honey, he's MOVED ON from you. No man has that good intentions.



heartcat
International Association of Epic Length Posters

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:54:21 PM
For SIX YEARS you have been okay with the idea of your children observing a relationship that was not 'fun/loving/respectful' etc.

It was okay to model that kind of marriage for them when there were no better prospects on the horizon. But now that there's this other man who rocks your world, it's suddenly important that you leave you marriage and embrace this new life for 'their' sake.

Someone who is cheating and/or wants to leave their marriage can more than easily find reasons and excuses to do so that make it seem as though they are actually being altruistic and thinking of what is truly best for their spouse, or their kids, etc.

Who wants to admit that they are just selfish and are putting their needs above those of others?

I would imagine the timing of your dh's desire to work things out or go your separate ways is not a coincidence. I would imagine that he has seen changes in you and knows you well enough to know that 'something' is up with you, even if you believe he has no clue you are cheating on him.

Maybe your lover really 'does' have good intentions regarding taking a 'break'. Maybe he really is being totally altruistic and would rather die than lose you but cares so much about you he's putting you and your family first.

If he is...then maybe you need to appreciate the insight and the sacrifice and reinvest your efforts and emotion where they belong, with your family.

People don't cheat because there is a flaw in their partner or their marriage. They cheat because there is a flaw in them.

You need to accept, understand and address that. You need to realize that this is not some great, romantic adventure pre-destined in the stars. You need to realize that both you and your lover have done a terrible thing and that indicates terrible character flaws in both of you.

And you need to stop using your children as an excuse to leave your marriage. Sometimes it really is in the best interests of children for their parents to divorce. But not because mommy and daddy just gave up on one another and didn't believe that their family unit deserved everything they had to give.

And not because mommy thinks she 'owes' it to her children to leave their father so they can see how happy she is with another man.

This other man is not the man of your dreams. He's a man who betrayed the trust of the woman he pledged his life to. For which there is no excuse or justification. He's a man who endangered his children's security and family unit. He's a man who slept with another man's wife. He's not a tragic hero. Just a tragedy waiting to come to fruition.


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AnneMD
PeaAddict

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Posted: 9/24/2012 2:55:37 PM
I just have a few things you might think about -

First - Love is a *choice*. Seriously, the feelings come and go, wax and wane. When you commit to someone, you need to understand that there will times you don't like them. There will be times you might not be "happy." Really, though, love is about choosing to love even when you might not feel like it. No, that isn't romantic. But romance is fleeting and it take work to keep that romance alive. But it can be done.

Second - instead of posting on a forum, go see a marriage counselor. Don't take our advice about whether or not to tell your husband what you did - see professional advice about something as important as your family.

Third - how can you ever really trust someone who cheated on their wife to be with you? And how will this new guy ever truly trust you - since you cheated on your husband to be with him.

Fourth - you worry about the message about love your children are getting based on how you and your husband are behaving in your loveless marriage. Well, what message will they get about love and commitment when they find out their mother is cheating on their father? And here is a thought - how about changing your behavior with your husband. That old "fake it until you make it?" It might work. It might not. You'll never know unless you try.

Please know that I'm not meaning to sound judgmental. I just know that there is a world of hurt and pain ahead of you if you continue on the path you are on. Seriously - see a marriage counselor. Work on your marriage. Show your children what true commitment looks like. Try. Give yourself some time to maybe find that love you used to have with that nice guy/good father that you are sharing your home with right now. Because I highly doubt this new guy is going to be a nicer guy/better father/committed partner to you - not if he is cheating on his family to be with you when you are also married.



*kaleidoscope*
Leader of the Banned

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Posted: 9/24/2012 3:01:32 PM
You're looking for a movie ending and this ain't Hollywood. WHen people are telling you the problem, you don't want to hear it. You want to hear what you want to hear.

Your anonymous name says it all.



lovetodigi
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

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Posted: 9/24/2012 3:02:00 PM
Is the boyfriend married?

If he is, he is cheating on his wive with a married woman. Even the fact that he has involved himself with a married woman says a lot about him. Do you really think that you could ever really trust him if you did leave your DH and married him. If he cheated with you, chances are pretty good that he would cheat on you.

Perhaps the guy is trying to back away from you by suggesting that you take some time. Your DH deserves to know that you have cheated on him and only then can you truely move on with building your marriage or disolving your marriage. I have no pity for anyone that cheats on their spouse, whatever they claim the reason is. It is inexcusable.




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makingmemorieslast
StuckOnPeas

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Posted: 9/24/2012 3:18:00 PM
I think you know what the right thing to do is. Stop seeing your boyfriend ("taking a break" isn't good enough). Tell your husband you're unhappy and you know he's unhappy, and together have lots of discussions about it, date nights, a weekend away, more discussions, maybe counseling, etc. Take your time. Don't rush into a decision. Especially don't rush because you miss your boyfriend.

You owe it to your husband, yourself, and your kids to focus solely on your CURRENT relationship and figure out if it's truly not salvageable, or if it is. Try to fix it. Try hard. If you can't after exhausting all resources and you can both say goodbye without any regret, anger, etc., maybe it really is over. But being a good person, wife, and mother means to deal with this FIRST, slowly and steadily, before moving on.

I could have written your OP except I'm not cheating. My DH and I are just like you and your DH. Haven't had sex in years, barely interact except to discuss the kids, we're basically roommates. It's not that uncommon you know. As a former counselor, I can promise you that. People don't go around announcing that, but there are a LOT of people in your situation. Do they cheat? Some of them do, but not all. There's no excuse. And you know it, deep down.

Am I unhappy? Absolutely. Is he? Absolutely. We are slowing trying to work on things. It is taking forever but that's ok. We owe it to our kids and our history together to figure it out, TOGETHER, without any outside influences. Our families and friends aren't involved because they'd be biased.

With the advent of social media, like everyone, we're both back in contact with old friends, classmates, boy/girlfriends, etc. I've had guys flirt with me and ask leading questions about my availability these days, and I'm sure he's had girls do the same. It would be SO EASY for me to go have fun, have someone hold me again, get ATTENTION. It would be a big relief to leave my problems for a while and have that butterflies-in-my-stomach excitement again. I LONG for that. And of course I still love some of my old boyfriends so it wouldn't be just lust - there's history there, as always.

But I'm a grown adult. I don't give in to those feelings because for me it would be wrong. My family has to come before my own needs. Most days I'm miserable, lonely, and sad, but I owe it to them to figure this marriage out first. To see if it can end up back where it was. Or better. I'm not going to make excuses or justify cheating, EVER. Even emotional cheating. I would be hurt if it happened to me, so I'm not going to do it to my husband. Just out of respect for him and our marriage - I will never do something that would hurt him. For our marriage I don't have a ton of hope but I have a sliver of hope, and that's all it takes.

I'm sorry you are in an unhappy marriage but you asked for advice, so mine is to cut off contact with your boyfriend and figure out everything WITHOUT him being a factor. You're not 16 anymore. Don't whine about how hard it is to deal with your marriage and how wonderful your new guy is. It's time to grow up and do things the right way. One relationship at a time.

NativeNewYorker
black eyed pea with soul!

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Posted: 9/24/2012 3:28:26 PM

Do what is in the best interest of your children. Period.

When they're grown and out of the house you can whatever you want.


I understand this thought. I also know that I felt guilty thinking that my mom and dad kept trying to make it work because I was so young. I feel like I forced them to be miserable with each other. They got along so much better after they separated and finally divorced.


Staci
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rubberloon
PeaNut

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Posted: 9/24/2012 3:52:15 PM
This situation happened to the man I am dating. He and his wife (who coincidentally I graduated from high school with) had been married about 6 years, with 2 small boys. She attended our 10 year HS reunion, and ended up getting back together with an old HS boyfriend. She divorced her husband and married him, and they were all smiles at our 20 year reunion.

Long story short, it did not work out and she ended up divorced from him as well. I see her once in awhile at family functions, she is very friendly with me. She told me that leaving her husband (my boyfriend) for the "old flame" was the worst mistake she ever made.

Don't do anything rash.

Roxanne

WImomma
BucketHead

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Posted: 9/24/2012 4:42:29 PM
First of all, don't assume if you leave your spouse that your new love will leave his too.

Staying together isn't necessarily the best for the kids. Kids are smart...even if you both slap on a happy face in front of them they will pick up on any tension. My sister and I were SO HAPPY when our parents divorced. They seemed happy and in love, something just didn't feel right though. And now that we're older we both REALLY see how wrong they were for each other.


If I were you, I'd come clean to your husband and let him decide if your marriage should end or if you should work on it. If he wants to work it out....give it a serious effort. Don't go into it with a negative attitude, or assumptions of how it will turn out...because it probably won't work.



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momofkandn
PeaAddict

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Posted: 9/24/2012 4:50:29 PM

I know most of you people won't believe this. But him telling me to try and figure out my marriage is not a red flag to me. It's hard to explain on here to a bunch of strangers that I know his intentions are pure and good. Because all you;re seeing is a douche bag. I'm sure I'm a douche bag in your eyes as well.


Well the jury is still out on whether you and he are a douche or not. You both made a horrible mistake. How you handle that mistake, if you learn from it and if you can do the right thing now will determine if you are a douche. By breaking it off, so far he's done the right thing. Now it's time to do your part. The affair must end now. It's wrong. There are no excuses or justifications.

Also, you are putting your affair partner up on a pedestal. Giving him props for breaking off an affair is like patting yourself on the back for getting through a day without kicking any puppies. I'm not going to think he's got "pure and good" intentions because he stopped something that never should have happened in the first place.


What I'm really struggling with is...in my heart I feel like I'm done in this marriage. Someone brought up that maybe H is also cheating. He may have. I don't know. As I said in my OP, we just had a real conversation for the first time in years. So maybe something will come out also from his end....


Of course you don't "love" your husband. There's only room in heart for one person at a time. Right now, your's is filled with this other guy. And I am sure you are doing a whole lot of rewriting of your marriage history to assuage a guilty conscience. I'm sure an outsider wouldn't think your marriage was all that bad. Would they even know that you went 6 years without sex? Probably not.


Part of me doesn't want to tell him about the affair because I don't know if this is going to work or if I even want to make it work anymore. So what would be the point of telling him and hurting him for nothing? On the other hand, how do I know this won't work? If I'm giving it an honest effort...I know I should lay everything out on the table. I'm just not sure I want to make the effort. I'm sure I'll get flamed for saying that...


More selfishness. You aren't worried about hurting him. You just don't want the confrontation. And that's fine. But be honest with yourself. Whether you divorce or not, he deserves the truth. He gave you how many years of marriage, he is the father of your children. He deserves the truth from you. All of it. Let the chips fall where they may. You made your choice to have an affair. Now you have to live with the consequences. The truth will all come out at some point. There is no way this will be a secret forever. It will be a hundred times better coming from you right now than 5 years from now after you are divorced.


I'll definately check out that website some of you referred to.. thanks.


Please, please do. It will be hard because they aren't going to cushion things. They will tell you flat out what they think. Because they have been there and done that. They were exactly where you are right now telling themselves and their spouses the same lies you are telling now. They will give you the tough love you need right now. Listen to them. They know what they are talking about.

You and this guy are no different from all the other affairs out there. I'm sorry, but you aren't. How do I know? Because when my husband cheated on me I heard all the same things you are saying here. Every word. 4 years later we are still together and he is so happy he did not divorce me and go off with the other woman. He isn't in love with her anymore. If fact, he thinks she's a hot mess that isn't capable of being happy in any long term relationship. He knows his relationship with her would have come to a flaming end and added even more hurt to his kids and himself. The world is a whole lot clearer to him now that he broke off contact and was able to see things with a clear head. Give yourself the same gift. Do not contact this guy. Get some counselling to figure out why you had an affair. And then work on your marriage if your husband agrees to do it.

MrsScrapDiva
PeaFixture

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August 2003
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Posted: 9/24/2012 5:41:16 PM
I would say one thing at a time:

First and foremost, immediately end it once and for all with the other guy...for good.

Get your head and and heart in order and try marriage counselling. You are still legally married. (not sure if you are spiritual/religious) It will be hard work I am sure, for both of you.

If you give it time and your head and heart is still not in it, move on. File for divorce. Your marriage sounds like it has already been broken for 6 years. I don't agree staying together for the children if the environment is full of disrespect, mistrust, yelling and a poor example of a relationship.

Live your life as a single person and concentrate on yourself and your children.

When your heart and mind are ready for a real commitment, move into it slow and for all the right reasons.


Good Luck and I hope you can get it all straightened out. You only live once but you have made a commitment in marriage and to children.

Aggiemom92
PeaFixture

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Posted: 9/24/2012 5:46:05 PM
I have nothing positive to say to you whatsoever. And I know the rule: if you can't say something nice. . . . But this just irked the hell out of me:


I hate the kids see'ing this relationship we have. I want them to know that relationships are fun, loving, affectionate, 2 people respecting each other....not not talking and just passing one another in the house.


You are totally trying to use your kids to rationalize your crappy, crappy behavior ("Me leaving my husband really would be good for my kids!" ), and that's just a whole new level of low.

andtyler
StuckOnPeas

PeaNut 251,639
March 2006
Posts: 2,891
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Posted: 9/24/2012 6:15:33 PM
The first question that I feel you need to ask yourself is if there is no relationship with MR. past - Do i want to be married to my husband or would I prefer to live alone. The second question that you need to ask yourself is - Am I prepared to raise my kids as a single parent and maintain a household? Next - Will I be able to provide for them if I had no child support? You must consider what you are capable of dealing with and living with - there are no guarantees and feelings can be fleeting. Before you change your life please be very clear with yourself about the consequences (even in the worst case) and if you are willing and able to accept them. Take care.


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