Tuesday, September 23, 2008

What would you do?

I had an email recently to say that a friend of mine found out her husband was having an affair. They'd been married a number of years, have a two year old son and recently found they were expecting again. The affair had been going on for a few months but once confronted, my friend's husband said he'd cut all ties with the other woman, he's fully committed to making his marriage work and they're going from there. I don't want to judge my friend at all, she needs to decide what's best for her and her children. I was just wondering what everyone else's view is. Assuming it ever happened to you, I mean.

Before I got married (and had kids) I always thought that any infidelity would mean an automatic banishment from my life. But now it seems like such a grey area. Because of the boys. But would it be better for the boys to have both parents in their lives in such an unhappy situation? Would that trust once broken ever be able to be right again? Would it be better for everyone for a clean break? Would it matter how long the affair had gone on? Would it matter how you found out? I'm hoping to never have to make those decisions.


  1. I felt exactly the same way as you! Before I got married, I thought, "If he cheats on me, that's it!"

    But now we've been married so long and have our life together etc, you can see it's just never as simple as you think.

    But I do think that a drunken one night stand could be easier to forgive than a long-standing affair. But how can you know until you encounter the problem?

    A classic case of walking a mile in somebody else's shoes, if you ask me.

  2. oh god, first, I pray that I will never have to make this decision because it makes my stomach hurt just thinking about it. but you're right, before the kids, i'd have thought, "you're outta here buddy!"

    now, i'm not so sure. i guess it would depend on the situation. i know that i have a hard time forgiving when it comes to broken trust matters, and so it would follow especially with something that monumental, so our living situation would probably be pretty bad if that happened and we stayed together. but there's the kids.

    i just found out about someone close to me having an affair and it makes me ill. their spouse still does not know and that's a whole other dilemma. i can't stand it. i just don't know. but the cheating topic is hurting my heart lately.

  3. I'm of a similar mind in that I had always thought that it would only take one slip, and that would be that. When I was six, my dad had an affair, left my mother and me, a few months later, my parents got back together for a bit (a few months, I think) before he left us for good for another woman (he left her for his current wife, but they've been together now for over 20 years).

    I always felt like someone who could do that would not be someone I'd want to be married to. Now, I still feel that way, but I also have been married for 12 years, have 2 children, and am not so sure that I would have the strength to walk away.

    My issue is that I'd never be able to trust him again. Never. It took loads of time and work on his part for me just to trust him to begin with - the leftover baggage from my father's mistakes. It wasn't fair to make him work off those issues, but he did, and now I trust him completely. If, however, I found out that he wasn't worthy of that trust, I don't think I could get over it. Ever. So, could I still live with him? I don't know. It would never be the same, I do know that. Could I forgive him? Maybe - probably not. Would I forget - absolutely not. So, is it better for two people to stay together when at least one would be miserable and bitter (and probably make the other miserable because of that)? Or, should you just go your separate ways? If there are kids involved, it makes it really hard, because I did grow up without my dad, and I know from experience how hard that is on a kid. Would I be able to put my kids through that? Probably not.

    It's a really tough situation, and I don't think it's one you can look at from the outside and say "Oh, I wouldn't ever allow that." I just don't think you can ever know, and hopefully you'll never have to know.

  4. I feel similarly to all of you. It's a gray area. But one thing I'm sure of, that has also changed since before I was married. I would hope that if he ever did have an affair, that I'd never find out about it. If I find out, it better be because he's leaving me for her, not to clear his conscience. If he had an affair, and it ended, wants to stay together, I want that to be his burden to bear, not mine.

  5. Thats a tough one until it actually happens I think....I always so no way, no more chances but now that I am a SAHM and depend on his income and he is the father...Hmmm....I have no answer.

  6. what a tricky subject.I don't think it has any sort of straight forward response. it come down to the people and what they can live with...I guess or can't live without ...


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