Your Age: 51 +
Length of Relationship : 21 years or more
How long ago did the betrayal occur?: It's been a while - over a year ago
How did you learn about it?: Called home. Wife picked up and answered with anger in her voice. She thought it was her affair partner calling. He was harassing her. She had broken up with him that same day. She confessed her 5-year long affair when i got home.
My wife had already been unfaithful 2 months into the relationship. Learned about it 18 months after. Got separated and got back together. Had 2 kids.
Describe how you are feeling now, or how you felt when you found out.: Disbelief. Shocked. Amazed that she had been keeping this secret for so long. Feeling i was living with someone i did not know at all - a stranger. Sense of failure.
How have your normal habits changed (eating, sleeping, etc)?: Lost 35 pounds. Don't eat, No TV. Always thinking. Minimal sleep. Right brain is overactive. Left brain is almost shutdown.
What are you using to cope with your emotions? Is it working for you?: Took some Paxil to reduce twisted pain in the stomach. Talked with a lot of people to understand what is happening. Friends, therapist, family members, wife.
What are your next steps?: We separated. She took an apartment. I stayed with the kids. Got involved with another woman. After 2 years, got back together with my wife. Took me 5 years to process. Then 17 years later. The kids left home. Suffered from PTSD. Did not know what triggered this. Saw a therapist. 2 years into this and still not sure how to handle this. The sexless relationship with wife is unhealthy. Living with someone who betrayed me repetitively is affecting my self-confidence. I am 57 now. I need to move on...
What emotions have come up for you as you've been going through this? (select all that apply):Shock/Disbelif, Anger, Sadness, Replaced, Betrayed, Devalued, Invisible
What emotions are missing from the list?: Sense of urgency. Life is short. Get going
What advice would you give to others in this situation?: Take a break. Slow down time. Don't react on emotions. Let time help. Talk to people. Open your heart. Welcome change.
What else would you like to share?: The reveal of an adultery is a traumatic experience. It shakes every part of you. Your core values, your trust, your image, your hope, your confidence in yourself and in others.. After a while (1 year or 2), it also reveals the beauty of life. The immense suffering allows you to explore you inner self like nothing else. This is a unique opportunity to grow, to learn, to love.