Forever?

”If love is easy, then you aren’t doing it right.” Truth.

Love isn’t easy, there is no right or wrong, there are no rules, and I’m not sure it lasts forever. I don’t believe in forever anymore. I don’t believe in marriage, and what it stands for…even though my parents’ marriage is still going strong. Nobody seems to take marriage seriously these days. It’s a “Let’s get married!!” on a whim, then figure out that it’s too hard to coincide with another person who is just as strong willed as you are, and then figure divorce is the only option. Just because you have a fairytale wedding it doesn’t mean that the fairy tale will last forever, that’s only the honeymoon phase. Once that phase is over, and you can take a stinky shit in front of your partner while they relax in the bath tub, getting on with the rest of your marriage is going to require work and commitment. I think this generation has just decided that if it’s broke and there is no warranty its not worth trying to fix. Not me, I google error messages, order the parts to make the fix, put new parts in and if it’s still not working, I hit up google again. It’s a vicious cycle.

I also didn’t believe that anxiety or depression was a real thing. “Seriously?? DUH…It’s absolutely controllable” insert *eye roll*…not! I believed that you could just set your mind to it and the anxiety would just go away. ”Get over your shit already!” kind of self-talk but…the tears kept falling, chest kept hurting, etc. It doesn’t work that way. When depression has its hold on you it doesn’t kindly just let go because you use your “mom voice” on it. I get angry with myself sometimes because I feel like I should be able to control these days when my brain is being a dick, trying to convince me that staying in bed is the best place for me to be, as it starts to replay the events from the last four years, then I hear a distant whisper ”Mom?” which pulls me out of the fog, I get up and start the day. If it wasn’t for that whisper though, I might stay right where my brain wants me to. Every day isn’t like this and I’m not sure why the anxiety elephant has been trying so hard to sit its ass down on my shoulders lately. Spring is on its way so I should be feeling happier, the weather is warming up, daylight hours extended, so why is my body betraying me? I wonder if I will ever be free of these feelings or if to be rid of them I need to be free of the situation that caused it in the first place. See??? My brain is totally in dick mode, bringing up the ”what ifs?” I don’t believe in forever so the anxiety can’t last for the rest of my life…Can it? I really want to believe that I have control over how everything will play out.

I read a book recently by Sophie Kinsella called Surprise Me. I wanted to find it funny  like I have all of her other books and distract my brain from dick mode, but it made me feel anxious and start to overthink about my marriage. It was about a couple who were happily moving along in their marriage when on their 10 year anniversary of being together it’s brought to their attention that they could live to be 100 and 102, which made them realize they had another 68 years of marriage to get through. So then they decide to come up with surprises for each other to try and keep the spark in their marriage alive, which ended in the surprises being catastrophic disasters. It made me think that my husband and I are approaching 20 years of marriage this year with quite possibly, easily, another 30 years together if not more. We are about 7-8 years away from being empty-nesters and then what?? Catastrophic surprises for the remaining 23 years? Ugh.

I feel like for a long time I was living in this alternate universe, where I believed that my marriage would withstand infidelity, that my kids would be spared heartache, that growing old with one person was how my life would turn out. I don’t believe it anymore. Life happens. There are so many things about living in that alternate universe I didn’t have to think about or want to think about because it was all going to end with happily ever after anyway. Now I think about places I want to travel, things I want to see or do and I don’t care if I do them on my own. Actually, I would like to do some of them on my own just to see what life on my own would be like. I want to feel strong/independent again like I used to, and travelling to Prague to go on a hiking/river cruise to Budapest might just do that for me. Maybe. Or I would just end up with really sore feet?

Our story used to end up with my husband and I being each other’s best friend till death do us part, with our kids and grandkids around us. That was all I needed or wanted. I still want that, but the need/want isn’t as great or as necessary as it used to be. There are just so many ways that a story could go, this is just my view and opinion. You get to write your own story it so make it a good one with a happy ending, just don’t plan on a fairy tale…

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Why am I the Chump?

So, last week, I posted a blog that sparked a reader to suggest that I read Surviving Infidelity and Chump Lady. I wanted to follow up on that. If I am to understand, the suggestion to read Chump Lady, which I did, means that I am considered a Chump.

Urban Dictionary has several meanings for the word Chump.

Chump-1. Someone who doesn’t understand the basics of life on earth. Confused easily.

I feel like I do understand the basics of life, it is my husband who doesn’t. I don’t find I’m confused easily, I was repeatedly told lies by my husband and because I wanted to have faith in him, I believed what he said.

Chump-2.

A stupid or gullible person.

Okay…at times I feel a little stupid and gullible for the lies I believed. Honestly, I didn’t believe a lot that he said, my gut instinct was on high alert. I could read his body language but I didn’t trust myself enough to call him out on his bullshit without concrete evidence.

Chump-3.

A sucka that tries to act cool, but really is a fool and tries to act tough, but really isn’t.

I don’t try to act cool, but I might be a fool. I don’t try to act tough but I’ve been told that I’m not always easily approachable by new people. A lot of that has to do with me not trusting anyone. Many of my family and friends have become very judgemental about my decision to work on saving our marriage. I believe that they don’t have the knowledge to make that decision unless they themselves have been lied to and cheated on. I was super judgy myself until it happened to me, I took a step back and time to evaluate, and came to the conclusion that for now, I’m content to remain committed to trying to salvage our marriage and twenty-five years of a life we’ve built. Yes, I feel bitter and angry, sometimes. Other times, I’m happy with my decision and so is he. He said he didn’t think that I loved him, but now he sees that I truly did. Not that he was using the lack of feeling as a reason to cheat, he just saw that I wasn’t going to just give up on him and walk away. I’ve had to develop a tough outer skin, especially when people who used to be my friends called my husband a douche or a dick and a lot worse. I didn’t think a true friend would try to berate him whilst knowing I was staying in the marriage and trying to not think that he was a douche or a dick because of his cheating.

Chump-4.

Someone who is really thick. They are easily duped, tricked, and taken in by others. A gullible person. Also, someone who relies on weather.com

I can’t even…really? ”Someone who relies on weather.com” Insert…*eye roll*

Collins Informal definition of Chump

A foolish, stupid or gullible person; dupe or fool.

Over the course of the last four years, at one time or another, I have felt ALL of those things. I haven’t let them resonate with me, I chose to change the way I looked at the situation. I know that I wasn’t feeling these ways because of anything I had done, that none of his actions should have spilled over onto me or make me believe that any of it was my fault. I think he was the Chump, he had a great life. He had a wife who cared for and supported him, children who wanted to spend time with him but it was his foolish, stupidity that almost ended it all.

I don’t think the Chump Lady has it right by any means, I feel like, maybe, she hasn’t been able to forgive the fool who cheated on her. The only advice she seemed to have was don’t be a Chump, get a divorce. I didn’t read a lot of her blog but felt that I read enough to know if I continued to read it would send me into second guessing my decisions. I want to believe people can change and that once a cheater doesn’t mean always a cheater. If your husband or wife have chosen to cheat they are the ”Chump”, not you. You are a smart, kind and forgiving person if you’ve decided that your marriage deserves a second, third or however many chances YOU decide to give them. If you have decided on working through the tough times, good for you, don’t let judgemental people make you feel that you are stupid for staying. You really have to do what works for you, staying worked for me so I’m going to act tough and continue to roll with that.

ps. If you google chump the images that coincide with it are a tonne of Trump memes. Go figure…insert *eye roll*

Words are just Words

My daughter said to me “Mom, you never tell us that you love us.” Does she know every day my heart hurts because I love them so much? The constant worry that as young adults off on their own, and hoping they make good life choices, that’s love. I say to her that words don’t mean much to me, that they are just words. I tell her that I prefer to show her that I love her. I spend time in her bedroom cleaning it, putting fresh sheets on her bed, or flowers in her room when she comes home for a visit. I do her laundry while she is with us, and make a point of cooking her favourite things to eat. I tag her in funny memes to make her laugh on days when she might be missing home, to let her know I’m thinking of her and miss her too. I tell her that there are so many other ways that I tell her I love her.

She doesn’t understand how hurt by her dad I have been and although he says he loves me, I don’t feel it, they are just words he says because he doesn’t know how to show me all the time. I don’t feel it because he had two other relationships with other women one that was just sex and the other I know he loved. He didn’t show me, love. He told me lies and continued to live his life without any regard for our marriage, me or our family. That is not loving. He tries a little harder to make me feel his love. He senses the anxiety days, even though I try to not let them show. He holds me tighter at night because he knows it helps to shut my brain down and stop the overthinking it tends to do in the quiet hours. He has tried harder in the last year because he knows I was slipping away from him and I wasn’t going to be there, or love him any longer. He feels my love, he wasn’t completely sure he wanted it to be something he had to live without so he’s decided to make changes in his life.

I love my kids with my whole being and have made them the centre of my life. I miss them when they are not with me, and feel happy when all of them are home. I ask my daughter ”Do you love your brothers?” She rolls her eyes and with that, I know the answer, that yes she does. I ask her ”Do you tell them? Do you say to them that you love them? Do they tell you that they love you?” She’s waiting for me to make my point. I tell her that without realizing it, the time they spend together when they are all home shows their affection for each other, it shows in the Facetime calls they make time for in their busy lives when they are apart, and the group texts between them. My heart swells, and tears cloud my vision because I did my job, I raised them to be caring people and that even long after I’m gone that they will still find time for each other.

At the airport, as she leaves me to go back to school, I hug her long and tight, I try to hide my tears because I’m going to miss her but she catches them, raises her finger to my cheek, brushes a tear away and says ”I love you, too”

Trust

Just so you know when trust is broken…it’s gone. Gone for good? That I don’t know. So many things don’t add up for me. I feel like I’m constantly running numbers in my head, trying to make 2+2=4, but it keeps coming up 10. If honesty is something that was practiced, then trust would eventually start to re-appear, I think, but lies are still being told. Secrets still being held and it just doesn’t help. I am told that he’s being good but should I believe that when he’s still telling me lies?

To see if he would tell me the truth, I asked “How long did things carry on with Linda after I found out? Did it end right then or what?” I had found a picture date stamped for almost a year after it was supposed to have ended, with his hand on her breast. His response was I talked to her but that was it, nothing else. Well okay, then whose tits are your hand on almost a year later? If it ended when you say it did, then there must have been another woman, who was she? His response…there was no other woman it was Linda. I just shake my head because I feel like he’ll never be honest, and wonder has he ever been honest? What else has he lied to me about that would leave me feeling small and crushed and stupid? He feels angry and pissed off, I can tell, when I find things out that he doesn’t want me to know. I don’t know why he hasn’t figured out yet, that for me, if he was to just have come clean and said it lasted until whatever it was that finally severed the tie, then that would been better. That would have been one step toward trust but…he chose the step back. He also chose to hide his old phone, so there must be more secrets in it that he doesn’t want me to know, another step back.

I feel closed off. He’s not the only one I don’t trust anymore, there are a lot of people who I used to talk to that I just don’t because they lost my trust. The people who were the closest are now the furthest away and I don’t let them in, and I have no desire to know how they are or what they’ve been doing. It baffles me though that he’s the one who cheated and lied, and still lies but I still allow him to be near me. It makes me so mad to think about all he’s done to damage our relationship but yet it still survives. The anger comes and goes, it’s part of the grieving process. Sometimes he’s around for it, and sometimes I get to just rage alone until I feel better. He says he just wants to forget and move on, it’s not that easy for me because I feel like a second choice that he didn’t really choose. I told him that unless he changed that he would have to be removed from my life for awhile so I could move on. He said he changed, he moved back home but things hadn’t really changed. He moved home but still continued his affair with Marjorie, still continued the process for her to move forward and stay here. If it wasn’t for the communication between her and I then this mess would still be going on. I put my foot down and said it ends now. She saw him lying to me in front of her and she was stunned that he could do that. I made her leave, he didn’t. I packed up her remaining possessions and sent them to her, he didn’t. I cleaned and cleared out the house where he lived with her, he didn’t. I didn’t see any grief from him that she was finally gone but he said he was relieved it was finally over.

She feels the need to stay in contact with me, and I’m not sure why. I worry about her because of what he told me so I respond to her. When I don’t hear from her, I check in with her to make sure things are okay for her. She seems to be doing well and she’s said she doesn’t dwell on what’s happened and it does not have a place in her day to day thought. I’d like to say good for her, but I don’t believe it to be true, especially when she knows who I am connected to and that I was the one who sent her away. That should be enough of a daily reminder in itself. We don’t talk about what’s happened, we don’t talk about him or bash him. I think it’s just a mutual checking in of each of us making sure the other is okay because the hurt is the same for both of us. We both trusted and loved him and he hurt us both.

The trust isn’t there anymore. I’m not sure it ever will be again. I’ve put walls up to feel safe so I can’t be hurt anymore, not by him or anyone else. It’s a pretty shitty feeling when you know the only person you can rely on, is yourself and that your guard has to be up 24/7. I keep trying to figure out when 2+2 stopped equaling 4 but as far back as I can see it’s equaled 10 because I don’t know when the lies started.

Triggered

I often have days when I’m triggered. Triggered by words, pictures, days of the month, dreams, memories of those times when I thought our life was good but really it wasn’t, they were just the times in between. They were the days that the lies continued, that promises were made that things were changing and that our relationship was the only one he really wanted. I wish I could stop these triggers that make me sad, sometimes angry or even make me stop second guessing my decision to stay in this marriage. Sometimes the what if thoughts that grab the pit of my stomach and sit on my back like a hundred pound weight feel like too much and I want to run as far away as I can, like the night when I first found out.  

It has been three years since I found out and sometimes it feels like it just happened. I hope eventually I will escape this feeling, I’ve chosen to stay and keep trying to overcome everything that has happened. I try not to let the what if days run away with my will to try and stay. I hope that I can trust him now to be the guy he says he wants to be. I hope that all I have repeatedly sacrificed of myself wasn’t for nothing and that he’s realized my life is just as important as his and that he won’t selfishly take advantage of me anymore. 

I don’t know why these days keep creeping in. I just want to be happy and strong again. I’ve been told I am so strong to have endured everything but I feel weak. I always thought the strength would be in leaving, that staying and accepting the affairs would be weak.  It’s all in perspective I guess. 

I guess it’s only really been a few months since Marjorie left, and that could be why I still have the days where I think maybe I should have made him end things on his own with her. The outcome would be completely different, I know this. He would rather have continued to lie to both of us, and I just couldn’t live like that anymore. After so many years of being his wife, I deserve better than to be a second choice. He tells me he never stopped loving me, and I don’t believe him. If he really loves me like he says he does why does he still want to know if I’ve heard from Marjorie and how is she doing. I feel like I’m never going to be enough, that he’s only here because he couldn’t let me go and watch me start a new life with someone who really loves me.

Some days I have regrets. Some days I overthink my choices and try to analyze why I didn’t chose to go the other way. I’m really trying to focus and stay looking ahead but sometimes the hurt and brokenness sneaks in and leaves me crushed. I wish I knew why he cheated, why he made me stay in a relationship that he so selfishly abused, why he wouldn’t let me have the freedom to just be if that’s what he wanted. I know that this is all on him, that nothing I could have done would have changed his path. What about my path? It’s changed, and I don’t know which way to go anymore. 

My Husband’s Affair Story

It’s hard to know where to begin. Everything feels ultra bright and so sensitive. I’m on a train, watching out the window as moments, questions and ultimately the lies he told me fly by at lightening speed. I’m holding my breath with the crushing realization of what has happened. I want off the train but I’m dizzy and don’t know how to get off, it moves too quickly. This is what it felt like to find out that the man I’d loved for more than half my life had been having an affair.

It was late in the evening, we were on I don’t really know what day of our trip in our RV across Canada to the East Coast, when the text came in on his phone. I never really paid any attention to his cell phone but it was late when it lit up and I couldn’t imagine who would be texting him at that time of night, so I picked it up. The boys were watching That 70’s Show out front, and I heard him making his way back to our bedroom. Why was this woman texting my husband that she loved him? Was he having an affair with her?  Yes. But why? Why was our marriage not enough? Why was I not enough? Were you with her while I was away on swim competitions with our daughter, were you with her when I saw your truck parked one day at the gas station? Did you tell her that you loved her? How long had it been going on? Again, why was I not enough? How many others have there been? How could you do this to us? All of these questions he answered with more lies, because cheaters are really good liars.

He fed me some bullshit that it was just sex, he didn’t love her, that he never stopped loving me, that he really was relieved that I finally knew, a big weight had been lifted off of him. Lifted off of him and placed on me. I wanted out of that RV in the worst way, but had nowhere to go. I started to shake with rage, and sorrow. I don’t think I slept that night or much since that night. I felt like someone had just died, the grief was so overwhelming.

The following day I had to drag myself out of bed to go with our children and both of our parents to Niagara Falls. I was in shock, I don’t even remember seeing the falls. I walked around lost in a fog with the deafening sound of rushing water all around me. I only remember thinking I could walk away right now into this crowd of people and disappear for good. The faces of my children so happy on holidays, kept me in place. At that point I stayed for them.

Sadness overwhelmed me, randomly tears would fall, my chest would begin to pound, my heart would ache and I couldn’t erase the thought of him with her or questions that crowded my head. How do you say you love someone but hurt them so badly? I don’t understand it. I may never understand it. I felt like somewhere I failed to be the wife he wanted. I realize now, nothing I could have done would have changed what he did, it was all on him. I was concentrating on being the best wife and mother that I could be and he was having relationships with other women.  I’m left with the feeling of what did I do it all for, he didn’t appreciate or love me.

He says I won. He chose me. He’s with me. What exactly, do you think I won? I lost the only person I’ve ever completely trusted in my life and he was replaced with a cheater and a liar. Such an amazing prize to have won. I lost my dignity, my confidence, the morals I’d aways believed in and thought that he did too. My fear in staying with him is that I may never trust him ever again. It’s been two years since I found out about his first affair and one year since he lied to me again, to go away to be with his second affair.

So we made a very long trek across Canada, visited relatives and friends on the East Coast then made the very long trek back. During this time our teenage daughter figured out what had happened. She came to me, and asked me what was wrong, I rolled away from her on my bed, I was not going to tell her. She started with her questions. What did he do to you? You wouldn’t talk to him, look at him, let him touch you or even be in a picture with him yesterday. The only thing that she said she could think of that would hurt me this badly was him having and affair. I flew off the bed and went straight into the bathroom to throw up, she kept going but now with her own tears falling, the only person she said she could think it would be was Linda, and at that point I lay down on the floor. At 13 she was more in tune to what was going on between her dad and this woman than I was. To be honest though, she had said to me at Christmas before this all happened “I think Linda is in love with dad” and I laughed it off. Immediately I was the bad person for telling my daughter about his affair even though I had said nothing. I was attacked by my husbands father, his mother and Linda herself. Did that poor little girl need to know? What kind of mother are you? What kind of mother intentionally hurts her daughter? All of three of these people hurt my daughter, not me. My husband had the affair, my father in-law figured the affair was okay…they just shouldn’t have got caught, and my mother inlaw was caught sending hateful texts with Linda about me. All of this witnessed by my daughter but it was my fault for hurting her. Until my husband went to my daughter and point-blank asked her about the conversation, he believed that I intentionally told her. He believed that I told her because he was still in contact with Linda and Linda convinced him that I did it on purpose to punish him. My daughter then took her sorrow to her very best friend, her big brother.

My son was 15 at the time, and when his sister cried to him about what their dad had done, he was very angry. So angry that he said one night when they were replacing a belt on the RV, he thought about smashing his dad in the face with the large wrench he had been holding in his hand. He had been travelling with my in-laws in their RV when his sister told him and when we finally arrived, he wrapped me in his arms and hugged me so hard, but didn’t tell me he knew. It wasn’t until much later that he sat down in tears in front of his dad and told him about almost hitting him with the wrench.

Once we returned home I needed to decide if I was staying or going. I wanted more answers to help me make that decision. I wanted to know that it was over with Linda, relationship and friendship, no contact. I wanted reduced work hours so we could work on our marriage if I was to stay. He told me there was no one else, which also turned out to be a lie. Linda had begun to pressure him, she wanted more, she was in love. He said things were getting crazy with her and he wanted it to end but she was bullying him. Making him stay up late at night to talk or text with her until I was asleep to make sure he wasn’t having sex with his wife. I laughed at one point and asked him if he expected me to feel sorry for him because I didn’t.

Depression and anxiety fell on me like a tonne of bricks. I was barely getting out of bed in the morning to get the kids off to school and once they were gone, I would either crawl back into bed or sit for hours just thinking or crying. I stopped seeing my friends, calling my mother for our morning chats over coffee, going to the gym or yoga, everything stopped. I would panic when I would have to go out of the house, that I might run into Linda. I had my first panic attack one morning while in the grocery store. My chest started hurting, then between my shoulder blades, it was getting hard to breathe, I felt like I was having a heart attack. I abandoned my shopping cart, purse and all, hanging onto shelves, trying to catch my breath, my vision blurring as I made my way to the public washroom. Once inside I sat on at toilet for what felt like hours trying to pull myself back together. So now on top of my fear of running into Linda and what I might do if I did, I now had a new fear of falling apart whenever my body decided to.

In October my husband and his father decided to drive the RV’s south to store them at the Arizona house for the winter. Two days drive down, a couple of days to set up some maintenance for the RV’s and then fly back. So a 5-6 day trip at most. I wasn’t ready for this. The short trip turned out to be a two-week trip and by the time he came home I was an even bigger mess. He couldn’t deal with my depression, couldn’t deal with the having to tell me where he was and what he had been doing. I needed that to keep me calm and he didn’t figure he had to tell me anything. That should have been my que to leave. I noticed every little thing at that point, even the new second phone.

I took the phone. Tried to open it but it was locked. I hid it. I told him I was paranoid enough with one phone, he wasn’t going to make me crazier by having a second phone, unless he unlocked it and showed me I had nothing else to worry about. He wouldn’t, he was like a caged animal caught again. I knew then, there was either someone else or still Linda. Unfortunately, it was someone else. Someone he met online. Someone, who he had lied to me about back in July when I caught him not at work in Calgary, like he said he was. I was packing for our trip, across Canada when I noticed his passport was missing. So even before our trip had started I’d already caught him in a lie. I asked him what he’d been doing in the States, who had he been with? His reply was how nice that you think I was with someone else. Way to trust me. He just lied to me for a whole week, why should I trust him.

On the morning that I found his other phone, I wanted answers. He told me about the woman he talked to online with this phone, his 14 days in Arizona, about the beautiful homeless woman his dad had picked up at a gas station and let her stay at the house with them, about his dad’s stripper girlfriend with the sweet little girl the same age as our youngest son. His dad had been having an affair with this woman for four years, plus a few others in the city where he lived. I was drowning, and couldn’t register all that he was telling me. No wonder his dad had been okay with his son’s affair, he was doing the same thing. At this point I asked my husband if he thought it was okay for his dad to do that to his mother? He said at this point in his life he was trying to judge people less. If you love someone how do you risk hurting them? Why not just leave them instead of hurting them?

My husband’s online affair woman was 26. He lied to her too. I felt bad for her actually. She suffered from depression, she drank and mixed cold medicine to numb herself enough to pass out. He spent his first week with her in July and 6 months later he lied to me again telling me his dad needed some help with some legal issues so he would be gone for a few days, which ended up being 10. I knew he was lying to me. He stood in the hall while I cried, telling me he loved me he just wanted to do this for his dad and get back. He went to see Marjorie, spent the week with her while his dad covered his story. I called bullshit and told him I wanted to see his flight itinerary. He told me that he wasn’t sending it and that we would talk when he got home. I was beyond mad, I felt rage that I had given him another chance and he lied to me again. I wanted answers and I wanted them now. After I had them, I told my father in-law he was no longer welcome at my house and his son would be moving out. He said if I ever needed anything to call him, as if I wanted anything from yet another lying piece of shit. I haven’t spoken to him since, he is out of my life. His actions were clear enough to me that he was okay with his son hurting his family.

The moving out was hard for me, and my husband promised the kids it wouldn’t be permanent, we’d get things worked out very soon. We talked the night he came back to town, and for the first time ever I lashed out and slapped his lying face. I told him he could see the kids whenever but until he figured things out, he wasn’t to come home. The only problem was we had a trip planned to Mexico with friends, that at the last-minute we couldn’t get out of. So we went, talked, did some sight-seeing, and hung out like friends. The night we came home I wanted to tell him to leave again but I couldn’t. I didn’t want to live in this house full of memories without him.

I planned a trip for us as a family to get away over Easter, for the kids to try to reconnect with their dad who they had been very angry with. I told my husband he needed to deal with his relationship with Marjorie before then or I didn’t want him to come. He came anyway, without dealing with her and then while we were gone he got a call that she had been arrested for drunk driving and resisting the arrest. I couldn’t believe that he wasn’t mad at her. He was okay with her smoking weed, and drinking and driving? Did he lose his mind somewhere that I wasn’t aware of? Oh, right I forgot he wasn’t judging anyone these days. So while Florida was a good trip for him and the kids, I was still in limbo.

In June, he asked me if he could do the decent thing and go and break up with her face to face. Wow! He now wanted a hall pass for a week to go see her and end their relationship. By this point I was like whatever, but if it’s not over after this completely then I’m done. He lied to me again and spent another week with her in August. I was completely at a loss of what to do. I was done trying. I gave up. I couldn’t convince him to go to counselling, he didn’t think we needed it. I was ready to walk away for good when our youngest son said for his summer holiday he would like to go to the Grande Canyon Skywalk. Our RV was still in Arizona, so we flew to San Diego for a few days and then drove to Yuma to pick it up. While in Yuma, I met his dad’s girlfriend and her little girl. I wasn’t prepared to like this woman but I did. She was poor and struggling to raise her little girl on her own, when she met my father in-law. He “helped” her. Helping her would have been paying for her to go back to school or help her find a job with better hours so she could be home at night with the little girl. Helping himself to sex with her and giving her a car and money wasn’t helping her at all. She was still at the same shitty stripping job, making no money and barely making her rent. I wish I could have helped her get out of his control, because that’s all it was. He controlled the money flow and when she wasn’t doing what he wanted the money stopped flowing. Have I said he is a despicable man? Well he is. What kind of father lets his son take full responsibility for this woman, telling my husbands mother that she was his girlfriend not his dad’s. The only reason I believed that she was his dad’s girlfriend was because my son had told me he had talked to her on the phone. Ugh! My father inlaw was so low as to involved my son in his extracurricular activities.

I’m so tired. Tired all the time. I wake up at night after a few hours of sleep and then struggle going back to sleep because I can’t shut my brain off. It constantly spins out of control. I don’t feel married anymore. I haven’t worn my wedding rings in the two years since, they don’t have any meaning anymore. I avoid our anniversary, no need to celebrate the day he vowed to love, honour and forsake all others until death do us part. I don’t feel anything anymore. I’m not sure I even love him, but am still with him because I’m sad for him. Sad that he couldn’t figure out that after everything he put me through, I was still committed to staying and now I’m just going through the motions. Sex is just sex, I don’t feel loved by him. I just feel he has taken advantage of me and my willingness to believe that the guy I fell in love with would come to his senses and show himself to me again. I do my own thing, I still take care of everything I used to before but now it just makes me feel sad. Sad because no matter what I did to be a good wife and mother, he made it not matter to me anymore. I used to love to do everything I did to take care of and raise our family but now I just feel like it’s something I have to do.

I didn’t put this out there so that someone reading this might think, this woman must be totally stupid, she should definetly have left him. In my mind, yes I was always going to leave him if he had an affair, but when actually faced with it I couldn’t leave. How do you close the door on 25 years without even trying to work it out? You say you know what you will do if it ever happens to you, but really, you don’t know what you will do until you are actually in the situation. I put this story out there so if you have the opportunity to save your wife or husband from the pain that they should only feel when you actually die, then do it and respect your relationship. Maybe one day I’ll leave him, when all of my children are grown and gone. I feel I can do that for them because if you really love someone, I believe you try your hardest to never hurt them. They know what their dad did and if I left him I’m afraid they would never forgive him, ever. I don’t want that. He may not deserve to have us as his family because we loved him with all our hearts and he broke them but he doesn’t deserve to be cut out of their lives either. He has worked hard building a company and making enough money so that I could stay at home and raise our children the way we wanted. In a lot of ways he was a good husband and father, just somewhere along the way he got lost, and now he needs to find his way back to us.

Be a good husband, or be an amazing wife but above everything just be honest.