The harsh reality is that the best indication of future behavior is past behavior. If he's cheated so many times in the past, it is highly unlikely that he will change. The first time he cheated and you stayed with him, it in a sense, gave him permission to keep doing it, because you would still be there. Each time he cheated and you stayed only reinforced this thought process. At this point, he has shown so little regard for his vows and for your feelings, and yet...still, he cheats again.
You'll have to take a long hard look at what you are getting out o this marriage and decide if it's worth being disrespected and cheated on at his whim. I can imagine that your self esteem is probably low by now, you may want to consider seeing a therapist to learn why you've stayed with him for so long, and what it is that you get out of his behavior.
I know there's a lot more to the story, so if you want to talk more, just click reply
Hi again, yes, I was raised catholic as well. My mother dealt with my stepfather cheating for over 25 years. He never changed, no matter what she tried. He didn't talk about it, and under no circumstances would he ever see a therapist. What most women don't realize is that this behavior is a form of abuse, and over the long term, it can wreak havoc on your self esteem, and turn you into a person you may not want to be. You will find it difficult to trust, not just men, but almost anyone. It affects other aspects of your life as well, not just your relationships. Additionally, you have to wonder what your sons are thinking if they know anything about what he's done all these years. Many times, despite parents best efforts, the children know far more than the parents think. This can affect them and their relationships for the rest of their lives.
The cycle he puts you through, cheat, apologize, cry, promise, are all the cycles of abuse. An abuser hits his victim, apologizes, cries and promises it will never happen again. Until it does. This is really know different. I believe that once you think of it like that, your decision will be clearer. You can forgive your enemy, but it doesn't mean that you should sleep in the same bed with them every night, or live with them.
You are still young. You still have a lot of living left to do. Although you might not want to think about it right now, there are people out there who don't cheat. There is someone out there who will love you without cheating, who will love you the way you need to be loved. Even if you decide to never get into another relationship, you at least know that you're not in a position to be disrespected.
Please understand that what I'm saying is strictly my opinion, I know that it's almost unheard of in many Catholic families to even consider divorce, and that this could cause a lot of other problems. I want you to think long and hard about the sacrifices you've made in your life, and ask yourself when it is time for you to do something for yourself. What do you want to do with the next 10 years. I welcome your thoughts, let me know if you want to talk more.
I know. I really do know what you mean. The issue is his, for whatever reason he is unable to be an adult, and follow through on his commitments. His immature outlook causes him to make any excuse for his behavior and to continue the behavior. It's a harsh reality to realize the sacrifices you've made and to what avail? It's a shame that he doesn't have more respect and love for you and his family and that he's willing to risk it all for a passing fling. The issue is, the longer this continues, one day, it won't be a passing fling, and you will find yourself a single parent, whether you want to or not. It's best to be proactive, particularly when armed with his past and present behavior. Think about what you can do now, while he is still there to prepare yourself in case he's not. Can you put a certain amount of money away? Do you trust anyone to have an account in your name where you can put a certain amount of money away each week or month. Can you go back to school? Either online, or take classes in something you are interested in that could enable you to get a job. What about going ahead and getting a part time job? If he's flourished and you separate, he'll have to pay support and maybe even alimony. Yes, things will change, but you can be at peace. Don't worry about not getting back to me sooner, I'm always here. I welcome your thoughts about what I've said here, let me know if you want to talk more
p.s. Congrats to your sons for their graduations, I know you must be so proud of them.
Thank you for the bonus, it was very generous of you, and I appreciate it. More than that, I am happy that I am able to be of assistance to you during this time. I know how horrible it can be to deal with the changes he is putting you through. To answer your question, no....absolutely not, you are not crazy. What's crazy is that he made vows that he is totally disregarding. What's crazy is that you did your part as a wife, and he feels that he is exempt from being a good husband. What's crazy is that you take care of him, his children and his home and these other women are even allowed to become a factor in your life. No you're not crazy. We're not crazy when someone tells us something and we believe them. We're especially not crazy when our own husband tells us something and we believe them.
He actually gave you his password XXXXX instill truth, KNOWING that he was lying but assuming you wouldn't find the emails. Why not just delete the emails? Why is he confused? Where is this confusion coming from? HE's not confused, he knows exactly what he's doing. Sure, he may be confused as to why he can't control himself, but at this point, thats a personal problem. So now, this girl has "conveniently" moved to where he will be on the weekends he goes to drills and you are expected to believe that he's not seeing her?
Is he going to change? Well, the best indicator of future behavior is past behavior. Considering that he's done this before and even now is still lying, I would say the chances are slim that he will change. Who really cares if he wants to start a relationship with Mindy? Why is he even talking to you about that possibility? In a sense it sounds like it's already something he's done. It's not your fault, this is some issue that he has inside of him, and if he should get into a relationship with her or anyone else, it's pretty much guaranteed that he WILL do the same things again because it's not about the women, but about his own self esteem and his own self worth, and his need to have what he wants regardless of the price.
If you decide to stay with him, you do so with an open mind of what he's capable of. Capable of disrespecting his wife to make some random woman be with him. If you decide that you're going to leave, start putting money away and preparing yourself before you just up an leave. Above all, think about your sons and what they are getting out of this situation. Don't bash their dad, but do let them know that you are not comfortable with what he's doing. The longer you allow him to do these things with your sons around, the likelier the possibility that they will think that his behavior is acceptable and may wind up repeating it as adults.
I welcome your thoughts, so please respond if you want to talk more.
p.s. I know you're proud of them, and I know the surreal feeling, my daughter just turned 16, *sigh* I'm getting old. lol
Perfection? seriously? I'm of the belief that to expect something you have to be willing to give it in spades. No one is perfect, and to expect perfection is to set yourself and the other person up for failure. Did he tell you before you got married that he expected you to be perfect? He is the king of excuses, and if anyone needs therapy it's him, not you. He expects perfection, he is addicted to falling in love, she reminds him of you....it's all psychological crap (if you'll excuse the expression) that is intended on keeping you in your place and justifying his behavior. She's got so many problems, so he feels like he needs to rescue her, or are you supposed to feel sorry for her for being with your husband? You don't necesarily have to answer my questions unless you want to, I tend to use questions to make a point.
You are 100% right, there are people out there that are capable of having good, honest relationships.
Thanks for the compliment, you made my day. :)
Yes ma'am, you are correct in saying that you are not expected to be perfect. Only God is perfect and we can strive to be like him, but know that we will never achieve the state of perfection. It is foolish to think that we can, and equally foolish to think you can expect it from someone else. You're an exceptional woman, by all counts intelligent, perceptive, compassionate and a great sense of humor.
There's a possibility that his adoption plays a part in what's going on with him, feelings of abandonment, inability to commit or to be faithful. Additionally the 'father' figure cheating could really have something to do with it. As a child he sees this woman who he loves dearly, and the man who is supposed to love, honor and respect her cheats on her, ie this is what you do to someone you love. Can you see why I'm concerned about your boys?
Your sister....that one kind of got to me. He has no boundaries whatsoever. Which only makes what I'm about to say even more important. There is no way to know that anything he is telling you about this other woman is true. It could be all lies. In fact, you should assume that anything that comes out of his mouth is a lie at this point. He might be saying that she's abused to get the sympathetic response.
Why doesn't he divorce you.....there could be a dozen different reasons. The simplest reason is, he could be comfortable. To divorce would mean anything from moving, to not seeing his children as often, to not having his meals prepared. A change in life that he just might not be ready for right now. Maybe he knows he will do the same thing to the next person, and they won't stand for it and he'll be alone. I have a feeling that is what terrifies him the most, that one day he'll end up alone. He probably does love you, in his way. Making you into the 'monster' or the 'bad guy' is his way of justifying what he does, to himself and others.
I know I said earlier that he was the one that needed therapy, not you. However, I do think that you might benefit from therapy, whether with someone in your area or even if you wanted to try and work though some things with me, it's up to you. There are reasons why we do the things we do, good or bad, but there are times when we know we are in a bad situation and yet, as you said, we go into denial and pretend it doesn't exist. There are reasons for this that you should try and discern if you can.
Do you have a name I can call you?
Terri, A pleasure to meet you :)
You can come back anytime. I suggest even after you distance yourself that you see someone to help you work through everything that happened, and to look toward not repeating the same mistakes. You're not pathetic, and I don't want you being too hard on yourself. As for your sons, no, all is not lost. Sometimes bad behavior on the part of a parent is all a child needs to know/see for them not to repeat the same behaviors. Yes, you're right, without making you into the monster, how can he explain the monster he's become? Deflection.
Anytime you want to talk, I'm here.