The Beginning of Something Else

On June 1, 2007 I found out my husband and partner of almost two decades had been unfaithful to me since before our marriage, and had been having intercourse with prostitutes for 3 1/2 years. This is what happened next.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Still having thoughts about hurting my husband

Tonight I was on the treadmill reading a book called How My Husband's Affair Became the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me. This book has been a challenge, because Anne Brecht takes a much more traditional approach than I ever could (and has much more traditional, religious values than I do.) But inevitably, the universal rises above the individual specifics, and there are elements of her journey that parallel mine and that I relate to.

Her book mentioned that statistic of 60% of men vs. 40% of women having affairs. What is it about men? Why do a large majority of them find it so difficult to be faithful to their partners? Do they lack integrity or character as a sex? Not a question I can answer, but I really wish I had some insight.

Anyway...I began to think about having extramarital sex just to even the score. See, promises to you can mean as little to me as your promises to me did to you. I can delude myself just as skillfully. So there. Now pull out your love and understanding.

But my husband has told me (only because I've asked) that he doesn't think he'd be as bothered/hurt by sexual infidelity as I am. Then I thought about how he feels so much more connected to me now, so much more intimate, so much more sure of my love and care for him than he did before. And I think about asking him, "This feeling you have now? Multiply that by 19 years, and then think about how you'd feel if you found out I'd been lying to you about something profound and intimate for about 12 of those years. How do you think that might feel?"

So I recognize that I still have some anger to work out.

Maybe I'll talk about this in therapy. Our couples therapist is pretty brilliant. She'll help us sort that anger out.

I also feel I'm still resisting facing the fact that my marriage was far from great, because I was not present for Husband and of course, he was having sexual experiences with all those prostitutes. I mostly want to blame him for dealing with his problems in this way. But I know no happiness lies down that path.'s something else I should talk about with our therapist's help. I really think someday I can be free of all these angry, nasty thoughts. But if they don't come out, they'll just get pushed down and we've already had enough of what that leads to.

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