Cheating husband

I need some help here and this is one horrible topic. embarrassing, shame, sinful, etc.
I am the wife of a cheating husband. married 27 years and 25 of it completely faithful. My husband is attentive, loving and tells me every day how much he loves me. Even his friends have commented on what a great relationship we have.
I was recently blind sided with the fact that he has been cheating on me. Not with one person and no one he is in love with. You see he got involved with a new group of friends… At the same time, his mother had passed away and his father was rejecting him when he needed him most ( father was running with a new girlfriend and ignoring his grown sons’ pain from the loss of mom).
This new group of friends…I knew they were bad. They were all very funny, clean cut, educated and some were married. Some have been divorced and married many times, which seemed odd from the get go with me.
My husband…normally very faith filled and loyal. These friend were making him feel wanted and great when his Dad was making him feel lonely, sad, rejected. Now, my husband is a grown man, but has always been quite sensative to love and family and closeness. His dads turning away from him was very painful. This is a very twisted story. Over time his dad broke up with one girlfriend and then suddenly " needed" his son again. My husband welcomed that and was not careful. Soon his dad was now dating one of the friends widowed mothers…right back to being rejected again. He sure walked into this one huh? So now this friend is somewhat of a step brother to him. The friend even calls him his brother now. He gives him praise and makes my husband feel so good. I can see the destruction coming. While my husband was feeling down, he was put on an antidepressant. He began to change ( negatively ) from those meds. Now he has a friend who calls him brother and makes him feel so special and important when his dad was clearly rejecting his love for him.
Come to find out…this friend and all of his guy buddies are cheaters. have been for years. My husband even told me they were! he felt bad for the wives and all the lies and deception, but he was already under their spell. The spell of the devil.
I will not say how I got the truth out of my husband but I did and there was no denying it. I had seen some signs and I had asked a lot of questions. he lied and covered up. I found out that he had been meeting up with girls from online date sites. let me tell you…I have learned a LOT. Date sites are not for dating. They are for one night stands and it seems everyone but me knows that. There are so many web sites about hook-ups in your area. Just plug in your zip code and you will find gals next door just about.
This group of friends have all been doing this for years and they pushed for my husband to be one of the rest of them.
My husband was feeling rejected ( not by me), sad, worthless ( his dad rejecting), and over time he said a few things to the friends about feeling sad. This is when they began to push him to meet up with someone who he will never get tangled with and she will make him feel special. UGGGG. How terrible.
Long story. This went on for about 9 months and he met a lot of women. We are a busy family and I have no idea how he did this stuff as I work with him! We are together all the time.
It seems to be over. he has had no contact with any of these guys ( friends) in 10 months now and says he never will. he has cried many tears and was near suicidal with remorse. He became a sex addict. Do I think the depression meds had something to do with all of this? YES! He was not himself on those meds. He said he felt his love for us was blocked and he did not care or even think about anything but himself. This was all confirmed with a Dr that this can happen. Of course he was not honest with his Dr about how he felt as he was having the time of his life! he is off all meds now and VERY sad. How am I? Strong…but a mess. How are the kids? Holding on but in shock. My strenght is what will help them, and what has. My forgiveness as well.
My husband is back. back to going to church with me ( he just stopped going and had so many excuses).
Of course he has been to confession with a Bishop friend of ours. We stay close with him as he is VERY supportive.
Still looking for support and help from any of you out there.
We are in counceling and have made some slow progress. We never had a bad relationship and we do everything together. But this is so hard on us.
Will God forgive him? How do I make my marriage vows clean again?
I am so shocked that this can happen to such good man. The devil is everywhere.
My Husband actually said he felt driven by something other than himself. Was it the medication making him manic or was it some other force? Just so confused.
Any kind words? Thoughts? prayers?
I have stuck by his side in spite of being sick and mad and hurt and so many other things.
He says he wants to be a loving family forever and wishes he could step back in time. He says he wishes he could go back five years and even erase meeting the guys friends. Just the thought of them makes him sick.

It sounds like you are doing the right things, and that your husband is too.

When the adulterous spouse genuinely repents, and the hurt spouse genuinely forgives, healing can happen. If you are both in counseling and earnestly seeking reconciliation, then I think things can get better, even though no doubt they are horrible now.

Prayers for both of you.

I don’t meant to be glib but what was the question?

That is a long and well thought out story but what is it that you are posting it for?

I will also add it is my firm belief. That this is not just limited to what you have found out. The odds that a man only is guilty of whatever you caught him doing and that is all is well… astronomical. He has cheated before in your marriage. I sense some denial in the post.

thank you for those offering support. and no thank you for the one who said my husband has cheated in the past. as far as what my questions were…I have actual question marks in my post so you can clearly see my questions.
denial? I dont know about that. I was just trying to put all the facts out there, so maybe folks could understand clearly that there was a lot of emotional stuff going on.
I dont suspect this was going on much longer than he has told me as I hold the passwords to our cell phones and I have all the call records. I am no dummy. I have done a complete investigation. I found names and numbers and locations to add up to what he confessed to me. I know when this all started. It was an evening with the friends, and the friend pushing this poison actually set up his first " date ". he had been pressuring him to do this for a long time. The phone records match what he has told me.
My husband is VERY nieve with computer stuff and tech stuff. I on the other hand happen to be smarter than the average bear.
I did have some questions and was looking for general support.

^^^^ I agree. You should also get checked for STDs. I think forgiveness is possible. Complete trust, way more difficult.

Remember you are posting on the internet to strangers asking their opinions. You will not like all of the responses.

But ok here goes.

First off, let me be clear that I am heartbroken for you. But honestly I see some warning signs in your post that may indicate that you do not have a full grasp of the truth. You seem ready to blame his dad, his friends, the websites, and even an “addiction” but not really putting the responsibility squarely on him. I would say this is common on spouses who have been cheated on and choose to stay. Daytime TV is filled with sig others being mad at the person who the spouse cheated with…

He sure walked into this one huh?

I think this one is rhetorical but I also think his dads rejection had very little to do with his infidelity. I don’t see the correlation between the two.

Will God forgive him?

That is answered in Catholic teaching. If he met all the requirements of a good confession then of course.

How do I make my marriage vows clean again?

I am not sure. You can’t make your vows again. And your vow was never broken, his to you was. I guess forgiveness but there seems to be a misunderstanding of what that entails here.

My Husband actually said he felt driven by something other than himself. Was it the medication making him manic or was it some other force?

It could have been either of course. But honestly the more likely thing is his character was sinful and he committed evil on his own…

Any kind words?

Yes. I wish this pain was not inflicted on your family by the very man who swore to protect you. I can’t ever really imagine what pain that would be. I am sorry for you.

Thoughts?

  1. I just don’t believe that for 23 years a man is faithful and great and then goes strait to one of the worst things he could do. In my opinion, that does not happen and I think one might want to convince themselves that it did happen that way to justify staying, but in reality. No.
  2. I also think that either you are not as web savvy as you think or he is more than you think because he seemed to find a way to meet women and have sex with them on the internet and you didn’t know what a dating website entailed. I think also that your safety is in peril because STDs are prevalent and liars lie. It also can take years for something like HIV to show up on a test.

One of my biggest thoughts is this. Would he consent to a lie dector test to show you have the full picture of his fidelity up to the break from it? That would seem a fair thing to consent to. Most PIs can direct you to someone to administer the test. And while we are on the subject. A PI would be one of my first hires… Provided you really want to know the truth.
I am glad you are in counseling.

prayers?

Yes, I will definitely pray for you and your family and the women he committed these acts with.

Of course I had an std check, quite a few times. All clear and we checked EVERYTHING more than once.
You think that my husband has cheated in the past? Is this what you mean?

This is a Catholic answers web site. I was hoping to hear some ideas about forgivness, and hope and God and sin and satin getting a grip on someone.
The story sound really horrible and it is indeed. You would have to know this man to understand just how out of character this is for him. I have very few people who know about this stuff because it just makes matters worse with family butting in and such. My very BEST friend knows. She is VERY Catholic, loving, married to a wonderful faithful man. She was my maid of honor at my wedding and my best friend for over 35 years. She knows my husband well and even she said " I would never believe it in a million years.The most out of character behavior ever. "
Also, what makes me believe this was recent is that my husband Loves to be intimate with me. I never experianced a change in our intimacy until the time frame that I see that this started.
Also…he shopped online for these dates. I know exactly when he got kind of wierd about having his own laptop. We have many working computers for our business, but employees use them as well. he got actually kind of angry and demanding about his own laptop, even though he is not real good at using a computer. Now I know why he wanted it and I have the date of the purchase.
Again looking for support and help with God forgiving him and for him to forgive himself.

No one on here can help with God forgiving him, that is either done or not done in a sacrament of the Church. Only God and your husband can sort that out.

Again, the alarm bells ring when you are asking for him to forgive himself. I have never understood that phrase.

Are you clear on Catholic teaching of forgiveness? I believe we are to hold each other to the same standard God holds us to in the confessional. 1) True Sorrow. 2) Firm amendment to not do it again ) reparation/repentance.

I just am confused at the questions. I would think someone who had been hurt like you have been would be asking how THEY could forgive him. Not how confession works or how he can forgive himself.

I have no idea what is going on in your hearts but it is common for offenders to manipulate by “beating themselves up with guilt” and then garnering sympathy from the people hurt by the actions of themselves. I saw excuses in your post, the meds, his dad, his friends, addiction to sex? but not really anything resembling full responsibility taken by him for his actions. Which to me, would be the first step in having me forgive him… and convincing me that he could change.

But again, I am cynical. No man has ever just up and cheated after 23 years and then never did it again. It would be amazing if the only times he cheated, were the times you caught him…:shrug: Especially in the world of online prostitutes and “hookups” That is pretty advanced stuff, that isn’t just “my dad dissed me and Mrs Johnson next door offered a shoulder to cry on and one thing led to another” This is on the lines of sex trade… :eek:

A PI would be the best thing you could do. You need to protect yourself. To do so you need to have the facts. They are not like they used to be. There is almost a 100 percent digital trail to follow on many things. If my spouse did this, I would hire a PI…

Have you seriously considered marriage counseling and individual counseling for both of you?

This is very serious stuff. Meeting strangers online for one-night-stands is very dangerous and goes beyond having a fling with a friend or a coworker.

It shows a complete disregard for you, his spouse.

I’m glad you went and go checked for STDs.

He might need some intense counseling…especially if there is any indication that he is a sex addict.

I’m with Hoosier Daddy on this one.

I’m not entirely sure I would trust that he hasn’t done this in the past and if it were me, I’d insist on a polygraph test to be totally sure you know the whole truth and he isn’t hiding anything else.

It is also unfortunate that the kids know and friends know as this makes reconciliation harder as well as involves more victims. It is unfortunate this information went beyond the marital bed… Especially since the OP seems so intent on reconciling.

Keep with the STD checks. IT has only been a year and many can take longer to check for and he needs to check often as well. HIV and others are virtually undetectable until a certain time. Sadly this is life and death stuff we are dealing with. But we cannot offer medical advice here, I would however speak with a doctor about when and how often to check for STDs.

I have to agree with Hoosier Daddy. Both your husband and you need to hold him 100% accountable- not blame the influence of bad friends or the rejection of a father. Your husband is an adult, not a kid. He is responsible for choosing his friends and for avoiding influences that can lead him to sin, and while the rejection of a parent is awful (I know this from firsthand experience as my mother stopped speaking to me in Nov 2014 for something she made up in her head) it’s not an excuse for breaking marriage vows. That seems extremely odd anyway. No one forced your husband to do these things- he chose to do them, obviously over a long period of time, and* repeatedly*. I don’t know if the excuses are coming from him, from you, or from both of you but excuses are dangerous because what happens when your husband feels down again or has a friend who is a bad influence?

If he’s genuinely sorrowful for his sin, that is excellent and I trust fully that our Lord will forgive him- since he’s already been to confession, he likely has already been forgiven if he was truly contrite. It sounds like you have or will forgive him. I think your marriage is rebuildable. But until both of you fully hold your husband responsible for his choices and his action, I question whether such a thing could happen again in the future.

Yes. Are you involved in your parish? Are you receiving any pastoral counselling? Marriage counselor?

God always forgives when we are remorseful. Your marriage can be repaired.

Yes.

Marriages are supposed to work differently than what happened. In my marriage we have had stressful times in our lives and we have always turned to each other more. That is why we have a spouse! We have had parents die. The discovery of a sibling, We have had a child who was special needs. We have had career changes and moved across the country to a place we did not like. And a few months ago after the birth of our fifth, my wife almost died. In all instances, we turned to each other, our marriage became stronger, and our fidelity became more cemented… That is what is supposed to happen. Not only that but our faith has grown together and as a family. Adoration is a weekly event, prayer is constant and Mass is a joy. These are the hallmarks of having a healthy marriage and relationship with God. Forgiveness then becomes authentic and freely given, not excuses mind you but true Holy forgiveness of wrongs. (though there are few things to forgive with my lovely bride!)

I am so sorry you are going through this chapter of infidelity in your marriage. You have received wonderful advice and thoughts from the other posters which I agree with.

I hope you will engage in some counseling and your husband as well.

I will pray with you for God is ever forgiving for those with true repentance and a marriage can be rebuilt albeit the trust issue may take some time.

With God, all things are possible and I hope you can pick up the broken piece and with help and move forward.

In his peace,

Mary.

I certainly know my husband made these choices, but it came from a friend educating him about all of this and how to do it and " your crazy not to do this. We all are and never got caught. Its the best of both worlds."
Yes he had a choice to get away from these people, but he is weak. he was very weak from watching his mom die a horrible death from cancer, and then his dad not being there for him.
I know he is responsible. I get it.

I fall in with the camp of folks suggesting counseling, for both of you. Try to find someone who will do both individual and couples counseling. Perhaps your Parish will have a suggestion.

I will most definitely be praying for you, your husband, your children and your marriage.

I don’t think you do get it. And that may be the only way you can cope. I lost my dad to cancer, I have had horrid things happen. It never turned me to the sex trade. It drew me closer to my God and my loved ones. I could not sleep in the same bed and kiss the same lips of the person who did this to me. Perhaps you can. Actually I hope you can. But “he was weak” and still blaming his friends is not a realistic handle on it. I honestly don’t want to beat you up to bad over it because it may very well be the only way you can handle this. But people could tell me a ton of things I could get away with and would “help me” but I would have the moral compass to know the sex trade and multiple partners would be out of bounds. I would ordinarily pass on by this thread having put my two cents in but I have an honest concern for your safety and health with this man. You need to find the Truth. Get a PI.

Also, because this is knowledge to the kids, don’t be surprised if you and your husband experience a huge rift with them. You because the kids may not buy into your view of the situation and him because well, what he did was pretty scummy. I would not respect my father if he did that. This forum is not a replacement for counseling, nor is it a place to delve into the gory details of a sexual horrific event. But I would caution you that you could be in danger. And I would protect myself first and foremost.

I still am unclear why you would post this. I hope you can continue to work through this and arrive at a solution only after a realistic view of the truth. Good luck to you. You are in my prayers tonight…

Go to counseling. Stay in counseling. When you guys clean up this mess (and you will if he is committed to the marriage) then renew your marriage vows. It will be just like starting over (don’t ask how I know :cool:)

I posted here because I wanted encouragment and support with my forgiveness and my grace. I posted here because I saw I was NOT the only one who had very similar posts.

I posted because the other posts about the very same thing, gave me courage to post. I did not feel so alone. Maybe make a friend whom could help me and I them? Many reasons to post here.

Thank you to those who could see my post for what it was and thank you for the encouragement and hope.

My husband has shown much remorse and has changed his ways.

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