Husband unfaithful but don't want to leave


Hello -

I have been married four years and we don’t have any children yet. My husband and I have been discussing problems in our relationship for awhile and I have felt frustrated with him for some time. He stopped going to church with me after we were married for a year. I want children, but he keeps delaying. I have suspected that something else deeper was wrong - more than just us disagreeing on things - then he told me that he has had 3 one night stands with other women (he said they were random). I had thought that if I found out he was cheating that that would be it and I would go talk to a priest about seperation and annulment since I thought this was grounds for it. However, now that I know, I don’t want a seperation - I’m not sure I’m even mad at him - I’m more just so very sad and wish this would have never happened. I want to work it out and I have told him this. He said he does not think we can work it out, but I want to try - he has said he is willing to try but he is not sure he can change. He has resisted counseling in the past, but I am going to try again.

I have read lots of posts on here - some say to go, some say to stay. I am praying for God’s guidance and am trying to set up a meeting with my local priest for guidance.

I have told my mom that he lied to me, but I am afriad to tell her (or anyone very close to me) that he has cheated - feeling that if I do - then there may be no hope for repairing our marriage.

I feel lost and like I have failed at our marriage.


Good for you for attempting to work on the situation. I’ll add you to my prayer list.


You aren’t trapped by children.

For every one-night stand you know about, there are more you don’t know about.

He is not really willing to work on the marriage.

Why do you want to stay with this man again?

If you can prove that he never intended to stay faithful to you, this marriage would likely be found invalid and annulled.

Cut your losses and run. Then get into some intensive therapy to figure out why you think so lowly of yourself that you would actually consider staying and want to work things out with someone who has treated you with so little love or regard, or even decency!

Again, you are not trapped by children!


Good advice! Agree. Go to a lawyer,the bank, your priest, and get a therapist for yourself.

Relative had children, couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her marriage. He encouraged her to move. She did at an expense they couldn’t afford at the time. Went to a marriage encounter where you write down your thoughts. He did. Wrote down he was having an affair and wanted a divorce. Reason for the move was his paramour lived five blocks from their new home.


There probably isn’t a real marriage here. 4 years and he’s already been unfaithful three times and doesn’t really care to change?

No kids? Because HE doesn’t want them?

Do you really want this man to be the father of your children someday? If you died, do you want this man and his non-Churchgoing values to form their souls?

You aren’t just picking a husband for yourself, you are picking a parent for your children.
Don’t these future children of yours deserve better than a father who really doesn’t want them and a sad mother who thinks she deserves little better than a cheating faithless husband?

I’m with the other poster. Get counselling to find out why you don’t think you deserve better than a cheating man who doesn’t want to work on the marriage. Find out why you aren’t furious that you have wasted 4 years on someone who can take you or leave you. And his affairs aren’t even with people he likes or claims to love. They’re just random people. Find out why you aren’t angry that he’s replacing you with random people. Is that all you are to him?

You have serious grounds for an annulment. It’s doubtful he went into this marriage really wanting children or intending to be faithful or to be married permanently. At least judging by all his actions since his wedding.

YOU didn’t fail. It takes two to make a marriage, but only one to really mess it up.

Is this how you want to live the rest of your life? A life based on denying what’s going on? You knew deep down for a long time there was a big problem. Are you going to build a future on who your husband IS or who you want him to be in the face of all knowlege and experience?

And by the way… sadness… depression is usually anger turned inward. You might really be angrier than you think you are, but I suspect you have never really been allowed to voice that in your life. It’s time for you to be honest with yourself, your husband and those around you. Wishing doesn’t make problems go away.

And please for your own health, get yourself checked by a doctor. You might think you are not worth protecting your own health from a cheating husband, but I think you are worth taking care of. :wink:


Reluctantly, I have to agree here. Really, if you consider the riskiness of the one night stands, you very well could be putting your life in danger by remaining in such a marriage. :frowning:


very good,you sound like so many politicos wives.they take it on the chin so as to collect money…Hillary blamed the terrible right wingers for smearing her hubby when it came out bubba was molesting a simple minded intern in the oral , I mean ,oval office…its stand by me all over again. Are you planning to do the same…one nite stands…wonder how that works…must be tedious after a while! The sense of sin has been lost to some and so they play tne martyr role…Jesus time and time again…declared…“go and sin no more” that was it…Your a wonderful example of the old fashioned slave girl…or injun wife…they could have three…one for cooking ,one for planting and sewing and the other for entertainment…throw the bum out ,wash your hands in case he has a disease and learn from this sad predicament…all the best either way…N


Trl80…I forgot to add that you did not fail this marriage. It is not you. You were totally ready to make a commitment. Don’t take responsibility for something you didn’t do.

With STDs about, having random affairs is very serious for you. You can’t allow this. It could mean your life and the lives of your children.

Somewhere out there is the man who wants to have children with you. You can’t find him if you are in this “marriage”. You have a whole life ahead of you.

Since he doesn’t want children, it would certainly appear you would have no trouble getting an annulment.


Well, aicirt, while I realize you are trying to be kind, I think Liberanosamalo is right in that she likely knew there were major problems with this guy before she married him. So some of the fault may be hers in that she either ignored warning signs or chose not to truly discern his character when she had the chance.

We women have a tendency to think silly things like, “Marriage will change him.” I don’t know why so many women still seem to think that way, but just reading these boards for a couple of weeks is proof enough that this thinking is still rampant, and that it leads to destruction and heartache in virtually every case!


Very true. She may have thought that. Right now, she’s talking about continuing counseling and, I think, he said he doesn’t want to. I think she’s given it a good shot and needs to hear him. Absorb what he is saying and not saying.

If she isn’t ready to move, she can do herself a favor by getting tested for STDs,and talk to a lawyer about her rights and her money. See what a priest says about an annulment and talk to a therapist. All are empowering.

Probably her mom and family have seen signs too. She needs a support system and, hopefully, her family and friends will be there for her.


What a thing for a Catholic to say!! Children are never a trap.

Marriage vows say for better or worse, not “until you have an affair”.

Your Priest is the BEST person to speak to, and know that if your marriage is valid and sacramental, working on it is the best thing you can do.


I don’t think so. Her husband does not want to have children. I think that is a cause for an annulment. I’m sure the priest would not have married them if he had answered before the wedding, “No, I don’t want children.” And he also vowed to forsake all others and to be faithful. Of course she should talk to her priest but if the husband isn’t going to change his mind, she needs to move on…IMO


sigh :rolleyes:

Of course I don’t think children are a trap! But they can be to a woman who is stuck with a bad man who treats her badly! Many times, she can’t afford to support them, so she doesn’t leave. That’s all I meant.

Come on. And besides, even if she never divorces him, she doesn’t have to live in the same house with him. The Church recognizes that there can be times when the marriage is so toxic that it is healthier for spouses not to live together.

And anyways, from the sound of it, her marriage may not even be valid. Would you have her honor false vows to a man who never intended true marriage? I think a good case can be made for this marriage not being valid.


We don’t know if he doesn’t want children at all or just not now. Divorce should not be rushed into without counseling both spiritual and marital. What if she ends up without the annullment? Adultery is not always a sign of an invalid marriage.


You’re right, of course, Seatuck. I kinda think that when it happens, like, 5 minutes into the marriage, though, that is an indicator that should not be ignored.


I would also be very careful and go to the dr. If he has had three one night stands with three different women, there are also some health concerns for you. I don’t want to add to your worries, but if you have been with your husband since these times, I would want to make sure he hasn’t brought anything home to you!
I’m sorry you are going through this. You will be in my prayers!


All I have to add is that if he is not sure he can change having children before he does will not help the situation. It will worsen it.

Make sure you know him before you decide to have children with him. Hope will not change him. He has to want to.


Adultery is not always a sign of…!!! what is …getting fat,or watching too much monday nite football…the worst outrage against ones marriage partner is adultery…the most intimate practice we have tween a guy and gal and to brush it off so easily…mmmmm…Herman Muenster once became a detective to keep an eye on his wife…a funny skit but now I wonder…I will contact Uncle Herman and see if he would be willing to return and at least read this thread who dont feel being unfaithful is so bad…naa he would be so shocked I will forget it…how many times have we seen those politicos ,after being caught with their fingers in too many pies,going up to the mike holding hands with their wives…soooo touching


I will pray for you and your marriage. I will pray that God grants you the wisom to see that your husbands actions are the actions of earthly flesh and Satan has opened a door into your relationship. It is up to your husband to shut that door and reconcile with his wife. If he fails this, he will be an adulterer forever. I will pray that God grant him the vision and wisdom to reject these temptations and to reject Satan and that he will grant you strength and vision.


My husband and I are 14 months into recovery from his affair. While no affair is identical, there are common threads to all of them, as well as to recovery from them. Of course you are very conflicted right now, and you are not getting the most Catholic of advice from this thread.

Your first stop should be to the doctor - for your health. If you haven’t already, you should stop sleeping with him until you are both cleared for STDs and until he is ready to commit to you again.

Your next stop should be to your priest. He can guide you how to move from here in an appropriate fashion.

You can consider seeing a lawyer for some advice. It certainly doesn’t hurt to have a little legwork done in that area if your husband is as unstable as he sounds. You don’t want him to hit you with divorce/separation paperwork unawares. BUT, that doesn’t mean you have to file yourself - it just means that you are prepared in case.

Be VERY careful about who you tell. It is very difficult for your parents/siblings to move past this if you end up staying together. Find a couple of close friends who will support you no matter what you chose. (And I am available through PM if you want.)

He said he is willing to try but not sure if he can change. That is where your relationship is. He will need to agree to marital counseling as well as individual counseling. He will need to have some accountability to you and perhaps an accountability partner (a man, perhaps the priest). If he does not become willing to do these things, you will need to consider separating. No matter what he choses, you MUST get counseling for yourself. Definitely do not move on as if nothing happened.

As Kage_ar said, you did not vow, “until affair do us part.” Research shows that most couples who divorce quickly, regret that decision within 5 years. If your husband is willing to do his part, take some time to figure out what is best for you and your marriage. It may mean staying and it may mean divorcing, but it is too new and painful to make that decision (again, IF he is willing to do the work).

Sometimes marriages end after these situations, but if both parties do the work and stay together, they usually find that their marriage is better and more fulfilling than before.

God bless you during this very difficult time. PM me whenever.

(BTW Nino, I know full well the assault that infidelity is on marriage. I don’t know if you’ve experienced it, but those of us who have know more than anyone who hasn’t can imagine. BUT, it doesn’t mean that the marriage is invalid. It is certainly possible for a person to enter into marriage fully intending to fulfill his/her vows, only to sin horribly in this area. In which case, you have a valid marriage, seriously damaged by adultery.)

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