My name is Dawn and I’ll be 45 in December! In a few months I will have been married for 11 years and together for 16 years!
Back in 2016 I remember thinking and speaking to close friends wondering what had happened to my marriage and if we were going to survive as we had drifted apart – although funnily enough I was still doing anything and everything for him as I’ve always done. Just before my birthday that year, I started getting a feeling in my stomach, knowing something wasn’t right. A few days after my birthday I just couldn’t get rid of that feeling and then a random number appeared on the mobile phone bill (which I pay for) and when I questioned it and tried calling it, he said he was having an affair (I can still hear him/see this happening) then adding “we have have feelings for each other”. Hearing she was older, married and kids (2 older kids and 1 who was 15)! Pure rage ensued, wanting to hit him and I threw him (and his stuff) out! I then logged into see the latest phone bill and over a four week period, he has sent her nearly 1000 text messages! They had met through one of his friends who had been seeing her!!
I found myself trying even harder to please him, to keep him happy
After slamming the door in his face when he left after one of his friends came to pick him and his stuff up, I broke down and could not stop crying. My family and his family especially were so shocked and amazingly supportive to me. Then within a few hours, I could not stop texting him, feeling pain I had never felt in my life, just wanting him back! I was not even surprised that he still chose to go out that night on a pre-planned drinks night. The next day, again I kept texting him and again he was out on the lash! After texts back and forth, one with him saying “you will never be able to let this go or forgive me” I promised I would and after him coming home and spending the night, he moved back in!
I found myself trying even harder to please him, to keep him happy, I demanded more sex (!), doing anything to make him happy (sexually also) while I couldn’t sleep, felt sick and couldn’t eat. I’m a plus size girl and finding out she was anorexic upset me so much also – and I’m still extra sensitive if a see a thin gorgeous woman passing us or on TV! His gesture was changing his mobile number! So for the next few weeks, I still wasn’t sleeping, eating, living off my nerves and trying to make him happy while working also. We talked and he admitted to feeling confused while I was paranoid every time he held his phone. Then on Christmas Eve, I went to bed while he stayed up. Again, my nerves and emotions were on full alert. I quietly went through to the living room and there he was texting her AGAIN – a small piece of scrap paper with her number on it! And he texted her to say I had caught him. So Christmas morning, the same friend came to collect again! Again I was in bits, normally loving Christmas and he had truly shat on it! I forced myself out with my family as we were eating out and didn’t want to let my nieces and nephews down where I couldn’t even eat and kept running to the toilet to cry while I felt everyone staring!
Again me and him were texting back and forth. I said he would need to be organised to start looking after himself. He actually asked if I would go along to the mobile phone shop with him to help him get a new mobile sorted! I said no Tommy, when we split and everything cleared out, we will never see each other again! He actually seemed shocked! Then later all he seemed concerned about was when “SHE” was going to tell her husband. He seemingly even made a comment to a friend that SHE would want her youngest daughter (15) to live with them but he didn’t want this. No wonder, he is not child friendly nor teenager friendly – then again apart from his mates, he isn’t really even adult friendly!
The next day (Boxing Day), my sister was absolutely fuming at this point and tracked down the woman’s husband on Facebook and messaged him. Was it fate?! The husband works and normally doesn’t have a signal until coming home at night but he got the message before work. Straight away he phoned his wife and because she had still been sleeping and caught her unaware she admitted to the affair. My sister then put me in touch with him and we basically spoke at length. Until then I believed the affair had been conducted at her house but turns out it had been in my house, my bed (I have lived here since moving out in my early 20’s well before meeting my husband). My husband was fuming at my sister for getting involved (he doesn’t understand the concept of family) and letting the cat out the bag but he also thought that SHE would now leave her husband. Well she didn’t! She dumped my hubby instead! After being angry at her, he started to beg to come home, to try again, to try counselling – and by New Year’s Eve, I decided to give it a go!
In the New Year we did the counselling thing which of course is not easy especially having to listen that he missed her and while the counsellor explained it wasn’t real love but a bubble, he truly could not take it in or understand it! Also in the midst of counselling, he admitted to messaging her again although she didn’t reply! I was still speaking to her husband then and he said she made the gesture of changing her mobile number! Leaving me mortified again. Then as a final big gesture he managed to get a job and to save for a holiday abroad for us. Although again, he didn’t understand that it was affecting me also as I was being left to pay everything as I normally did! Being abroad for the first time in 17 years, it was lovely truly relaxing but again felt it was more about him and doing what he wanted.
I don’t know who I am anymore, who I’ve become
So, it is now September 2020 and I’m still paranoid, wanting to check his phone, still doing everything and more for him, constantly worrying he is not happy, that I’m not doing enough, that I’m not enough, that I’m gross and disgusting, that he is only with me as it is an easy life…….
Through Facebook I know SHE had another affair and they split up but they are together again – celebrating their 20th wedding anniversary!
I’ve had depression in the past and tablets never worked but this feeling I’ve had since…… some days I wish I was not here – I’m very honest with my close friends but that is the only part they don’t know – that I continue to put a face on whereas really I wish I was dead. I’m so lost, I don’t know who I am anymore, who I’ve become. My sister and my friends ask “what does he do for you?” and I cannot answer this as he actually does nothing at all.
So why do I stay, why do I love him still?! My heart still is broken and totally numb!