Friday, March 24, 2023
HomeRelationship AdviceMy wife told me she just cheated.

My wife told me she just cheated.

My (29M) wife (33F) just told me she cheated on me. We have been together for nearly a decade, have two kids, and a house together. She is the primary breadwinner as I was diagnosed with a serious illness a few years ago. We have been arguing a bit lately but I’ve been trying to make her happy. I am totally lost and don’t know what to do. My heart is shattered. I love my wife more than I can explain.

UPDATE: This has happened three times. It started a month ago. This is just fucked up.

Update 2/more back story: we talked for about two hours. I allegedly got every detail there is. I’m just heartbroken.

This all started at the end of September. We took a trip without our kids, and it was supposed to be an anniversary trip for us. The entire trip she got very angry with me. We ended up having a huge argument and she spouted off a bunch of problems that we were having (who gets up with kids, certain things she wants to do, general life stress etc.) I took all of the issues to heart and I really have been trying to work on the things she said and make her happier. Apparently this started shortly after that blow out and has happened three separate times. She has been acting off despite my very best efforts to do what she needs, and I joked it was her “boyfriend” because I truly never thought she would do this to me. I spotted a light mark on her neck and asked her what it was and she said it was a pimple she messed with, but I was more insistent it looked like a hicky and I haven’t sucked neck in a few weeks (wonder why) and she broke a few minutes later and told me. I left to sob at my brothers for a while and came back and asked all the questions I needed. She said she told me because she wanted it to stop and didn’t want to lie to me anymore. She answered every one of my questions and if she tried to dodge them I doubled down. She went to sleep in a different room. She also tried to hug me and apologize for everything a few times but I pushed her off and told her to not touch me. I don’t know what to do. I honestly and truly love(d) her more than I could ever explain. I’m a moron, but I still do. I want this to work out but there’s no way going back from this. She said she doesn’t know what to do to redeem herself from this, and I don’t know either. I’m completely wrecked to the very fiber of my being and I don’t know what to do.

TL;DR heart broken and don’t know how to proceed. Any advice helps. Thank you.

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  1. See a therapist, give her an ultimatum similar to what I had to do give them the option to pick divorce or fix the relationship. If divorce is picked if needed get a lawyer to help with the process. It’s not or never a fun process, use the time before a divorce is decided on if reconciliation is possible. Take your time, dont rush, and make sure you are fine with your final decisions!

  2. Speak to a lawyer and get your financial and custodial ducks in a row.

    And remember this – you may (have) love(d) her more than you can explain, but she *is not the person you think she is*. She metaphorically wore a mask to hide the lies, deceit, disrespectful nature, etc. of her ‘extracurricular activities’. Not that it makes everything okay, but when you realize that, you’ll be able to see that she hasn’t been who you thought she was (and I’m guessing who you fell in love with) from the moment she started doing such terrible things.

  3. First up, I’m so sorry you’re experiencing this. This is one of the hardest things any person has to go through. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. Your feelings right now are valid – don’t let anyone (especially your wife) tell you otherwise.

    No rash decisions right now. Don’t do anything or say anything that is irreversible. Your emotions are high right now (rightfully so) but that isn’t the best frame of mind to make good choices. Give it some time so you can think about this, not just feel.

    If you don’t want her to touch you or be around you, that’s entirely fine and you should tell her that’s what you want.

    Speak to a lawyer to understand your legal position and options if you choose to separate. This isn’t deciding to divorce, it’s gathering information about your situation. You shouldn’t decide to end the marriage until you have all the facts about that decision in front of you.

    Get an STI test. Hate to say it but cheaters often trickle truth. She may have fucked this guy unprotected. She may have fucked other guys unprotected. You just don’t know. And you can’t rely on what she told you about her cheating, because cheaters often lie or mislead. So get the STI test for peace of mind.

    The kids make this the hardest thing of all. Don’t stay for the kids. Better for kids to be raised with two happy but separated parents than parents who are together but miserable and/or hate each other.

    the website []( has some articles for people who have just found out. Different perspectives from people who went through what you went though.

    The biggest challenge in all this is going to be the broken trust. Even if you can get over the infidelity (no small thing) it can take much longer to rebuild trust. And if that is ever to be possible, she is going to have to do a huge amount of work to make it possible. And even if she does eventually regain your trust, there will always be scars. you will always wonder when she is home late from work “I wonder if she’s cheating again”. The damage to trust is the biggest damage done by infidelity.

  4. Considering your situation it’ll probably be hard to divorce but ultimately it’s the best choice to divorce.

    Cheating isn’t a mistake, it’s a choice and she did it 3 times.

    Technically she also cheated on your children because cheating usually takes apart families

  5. As someone that is has fully reconciled with my wife, and we have now been together for 50 years, I can tell you that you two can get thru this. I don’t mean to beat you up but you have extra challenges since you have a severe case of Ankylosing Spondylitis, and your future dating opportunities are going to be very limited.

    If your wife has real remorse over this, you can do this.

  6. Im curious to know what your issues were in the marriage that were causing your fights and that you said you were “working on”. Because in your post you say it as if it was things you werent doing, but in comments all of a sudden you are taking care of the kids 24/7. So which is it?

    Her needs are going unmet, shes now the main breadwinner, probably while still having to do all the roles she did before, as shitty as it is her husband is not the same… these are certainly all things that could have someone look outside the relationship.

    Im curious to know if she would have told you had you not pushed the hickey thing though.

    You can either go to counseling and try to make it work because you love each other, or for the kids and the fact that if you really are so sick you cant work, or you can divorce.

    I will say as a child of parents who stayed for kids, it isnt worth it.

  7. I am sorry you have to go through this. The only good take on this is that she actually told you herself. Now, married couples can recover from infidelity, it is however a long and hurtfull process.

    Is it worth it? I dont know. Go to couples counseling. Take some time for yourself to think a little.

  8. I was married for 19 years. We were together for 21 years.

    My wife cheated and I had to find out by basically turning into Sherlock Holmes. The guilt ate her alive. She physically shook from it for months. She was hunched over all the time. It broke her.

    We went through counseling for a long time. It got ugly. We ended up finalizing our divorce. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever gone through. It tore our kids apart.

    My daughter got suicidal. My son still has anger issues. It’s been a year since this mess started.

    It’s been rough. We talk now and we’ve reached a level of communication for coparenting. I’m on the receiving end of her regret a lot.

    I’ve read that with a counselor and lots of time and effort on the part of both parties that couples can work through infidelity.

    Here’s the thing though: you will hurt more than you hurt right now going through the process, and I imagine so will she. It’s not an easy thing. I wish more people were aware of the damage they do to themselves and their families when it comes to infidelity.

    Good luck. You’ll get through this one way or another. And you will be stronger for having experienced this.

  9. So let me get this straight, she’s the breadwinner but also the one that does everything with the kids? This relationship was over way before she cheated.

  10. Saw in your comments that you get high, amongst other things.

    I understand about disability, and mental things that come along with that.

    And please understand that I am not excusing what your partner did, but I was you. The guy that is just existing. Getting high, just coasting, trying to get things going with disability while my ex worked hard, was busy doing stuff, etc.

    People (significant others) get tired of that shit. When you are not holding up your end.

    I’m not saying you aren’t, but if you want to seriously try and work on the relationship (you said you love her more than life itself) then you need therapy now. Not just joint therapy, but individual therapy.

    You don’t sound happy with your life right now. Unfortunately that way of living gets old quick.

    I’d really take some inventory of the big picture while you have a chance.

    Best of luck man.

  11. This might be the unpopular opinion but I’d see a couples therapist before deciding one way or the other. Infidelity is absolutely something couples can come back from and repair from, though it’ll take a lot of work and willingness to change and face our own role in the relationship dynamic- no matter if you’re the cheater or the cheated on. You have built a life over a decade, of course it’s messed up to cheat. Hurtful, weak, nearsighted. But we don’t have to end it all over this. She has deep-seeded dissatisfactions with how some things are going in the relationship, as I’m sure you do too. She coped in a dumb way. But the way our culture vilifies the cheater is so black/white, without regard for the nuances of life and the weaknesses and traumas at play for both parties. Forgiveness is the harder choice, and maybe she doesn’t deserve it, but I have a feeling you’d be happier in the long run if you at least give your relationship a chance. It won’t be easy, it might not even work. But at least you know you tried and didn’t decide to end it when you were feeling reactive.

  12. You need to decide if you want to try to salvage the marriage or temporarily separate, and/or divorce. You would certain be in the right if you decide to end it. >>That being said, I’ve heard of couples who have undergone marriage counseling and came out of it stronger. It all comes down to first what you want, and then what she wants, and then the details deciding what you choose. Therapy should be a must if trying to salvage it, as should any boundaries you feel necessary to ensure she doesn’t cheat again. Cut all ties with cheating partner, etc.. I wish you strength, happiness, and love in the future regardless of what you decide.

  13. Get some legal help, and see what you need to do to get yourself tested for STD’s and your kids paternity tested. It will make the divorce process a lot easier to ensure they are yours or not before hand.

  14. I found out my husband had been cheating, I felt the same way I knew things weren’t perfect in our marriage but I never thought he would do this to me. We have been together for 17+ years and have four kids. We did counseling because I am still live him as well. We are working towards me trusting him again but I have been having severe panic attacks which I never had prior to any of this. We still haven’t made a decision about our futures and are taking things day by day. I will let you know that there will be some bad days no matter what you decide but you have to process things together and by yourself to see what you really want. Don’t let other people’s bias make decisions for you. Either way it hurts and will for a long time. But take your time, way your options and decide what is best for you and your family. She was selfish and now it’s your turn to think about yourself. If you need help reach out and get it.

  15. Yeah it will never be the same dog. You should break it off imo because you will never have any self esteem again staying with her. You’ll never trust her again. Just try to keep it civil for the kids’ sake. Sorry this happened bro, and gl.

  16. okay. and why isnt she your soon to be EX-wife. you love her, but she doesnt love you. sorry but its true. she’ll probably tell you she does, but you dont cheat on the people you love. shes selfish, she didnt care about your feelings or what this would do to your marriage and her telling you does not change that.

  17. Dude get the fuck out of this. Once a cheater always a cheater. And I’m this case she has been doing this consistently?? If you value your mental health, get out. Make sure you have documentation proving she has been cheating. Make sure you document EVERYTHING!! You will need this to get support after the divorce.

  18. Just know mate, by taking her back the only thing you’ll be telling her is “It’s okay if you break my heart, it’s okay you’re selfish, and it’s okay that you sleep with other people.. If I find out, I’ll just slap you once or twice on the wrist.”

  19. You don’t redeem her. There is no going back. The people who do get back don’t truly really get back. Ask the one who was cheated on (not the cheater because they can believe they got passed it but the cheatee always has that in the back of their mind and just learned to live with it).

    You walk away. You can love her but also realize your own value. Yes you love her. Yes she is all you want. Yes you wish you could go back and fix your mistakes. Yes you wish you could hurt her just as badly. We all been there one way or another. But skip it all. All the trying. The talking. The confliction. Just. Walk. Away. Take the pain. Delete all your memories and try your best to forget her. Cause at the end if the day, she’d likely be over you within a few months and likely has this guy to fall back on. Why be with someone like that?

  20. Divorce is the only option. Cheating is not to be tolerated. Try your damndest to get alimony from her in the divorce since she’s the breadwinner. Create a paper trail of her admitting what she’s done so you can use it in court.

  21. Wel, I’m being bruta here, but realistic.

    If you have a serious illness that’s covered by the breadwinners health cover, you need to suck it up. If you divorced her everything you’d get, even if you got everything would be spent on your medical bills,

    You are fortunate enough that she wants to stay married to you. At least her health cover will keep paying the med bills.

    Head over heart here.

  22. These posts are all very one sided. I’d wonder what her version is? I’d look at the role you played and how it contributed to the end result. You can choose to look inside and take some lessons into future with her or someone else, or, you can live as a victim, and let. Simone else’s define you and future relationships

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