My husband of 22 years had an affair two years ago with a young subordinate who’s also living with a spouse. We both went to individual counselling; he won’t attend marriage counselling with me.
I asked him to stop all contact with her, but he refuses. He’s still at home though I told him to move out when I found his letter to her, claiming she’ll always remain his best friend. What the hell have I been all these years?
Financially, he’s better off than I’d be even in 10 years.
He saves his text messages from her; it tells me he’s still in love with her. But he won’t leave. I won’t either, as that’d be “abandonment” and I’d lose out in a divorce, if that happens.
How do I cope?
Legal advice is important, but listen also to your own heart and mind. Find out why Hubby wants to stay.
He may NOT be “in love,” but still regards this woman well; I’m not excusing serial cheating, but, one mid-life affair is sometimes an escape from the realities of everyday life and fears of aging.
You have a right to be angry about it, but if it’s over but for the text-messages, your marriage may still be salvageable IF that’s what you both want.
However, if he’s still in love, and you’re both hanging in just for financial reasons, it’s a cold trap from which one of you will eventually burst out.
Think this through. Hubby needs to hear that counselling can greatly help you both move forward; but it should not only be about blaming, as he likely fears.
I’m an artist who’s always been camera-shy; I only appear in photos when absolutely necessary. However, I come from a family obsessed with taking photos and posting them on social networking sites. They’ll even hold back traffic to get 10-15 shots of the same pose.
Recently, my work has been successful, and friends and family attended a function. While I’m grateful for their support, there were moments between camera flashes where I wanted their emphasis to be on the pieces, and not on me. But I didn’t want to cause a scene.
How can I politely refuse to be in their pictures or get them to limit photo sessions to manageable time periods?
- Private Image
I detect humility and an introspective personality – not unusual in an artistic person - so, fortunately, your shyness doesn’t overwhelm you. You’re even able to allow some photos of yourself, without it affecting your ability to carry on.
I believe that as your self-confidence in yourself and your art grows, so too will your tolerance for others’ enthusiasm through photos. After all, for some people, that’s their art.
I really like my mother’s boyfriend as a friend more than step-dad as I’m 17 and already have a father I see regularly and an ex-step-father who still calls me sometimes.
Mom says she’s getting married again, and I want her to be happy, but I can’t see having yet another stepfather!
- Too Many
You don’t have to follow any step-child pattern; you already have an appropriate connection to this man as your friend. It means you have mutual respect for each other, which is the most important basis to a continued healthy relationship.
Tell your Mom how you feel, so that she understands, without diminishing your sincere hopes that this will be a happy union for her.
My husband’s an alcoholic, in denial.
Our doctor tried to get him help, but failed. When I return from work, he’s argumentative and verbally abusive. His only support is our adult children and myself.
We’re all concerned about his health but he blames us for his health issues: high blood pressure, and his mobility is unsteady.
I’m concerned that an intervention might cause him to have a stroke. How can we get him help?
- Alanon Friend
You’re already on the right track by finding your own support and canvassing ideas, through Al-anon, and within your family.
But your doctor can be a greater resource – he/she should assess the risk of stroke and the wisdom of an intervention. The doctor should also be alerting your husband, clearly and firmly, that his health problems are self-imposed, dangerous and will worsen through alcoholism, so he’ll eventually end up in hospital… if he survives.
Tip of the day:
A couple who stay together after one spouse’s affair, need openness and hard work, not distance and denial.