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“My husband’s affair became the best thing that ever happened to me”


Within days of my husband’s affair being disclosed to me…or perhaps within mere hours, I immediately went into lock down crisis mode.  I am a resourceful person, and I needed  help.  I needed answers.  I needed anything to make me feel as though I was moving things forward.  I went online and turned to google.  I searched for things like “infidelity and co-workers” and “how to get over an affair”, and anything you can imagine to search, I searched it.

I remember looking through the pages that my search turned up, and seeing the words “My husband’s affair became the best thing that ever happened to me”.  I shook my head in disbelief.  What the hell is she thinking?  How dare she take something so painful and traumatic and say that it was the best thing….how dismissive of me, my feelings, this reality?  I peeked at the link once or twice, never taking the time to dig in because it wasn’t what I needed (at the time).  I passed it by many times, but my point is that it kept popping back up.  I’d google, and there would be Anne Brecht’s book, and her website, claiming to have been saved by her husband’s affair.  It sickened me sometimes, but most of the time I would ignore it.  Two years later, I am in a different place, and I “get it” now.  I see where she is coming from.  I couldn’t see where she was because of where *I* was.  My perspective was too fresh, too wounded, to raw.  I wasn’t in a place where I could see there being ANY benefit to an affair.  It was devastating, how could there be positive anything?

Last week, I was contacted through this blog by a woman (Wendy) who has been through an affair.  Not only was her husband unfaithful, but hers also fathered a child with his mistress.  I will tell you, that is a rare thing to find.  In as much as I have received a lot of support and understanding from women and men who have been struck by this, few of them had the additional layer of a child born of the infidelity.   She contacted me, and we’ve been talking through email the last few days.  I can’t tell you how pleased I am to have had this connection made.  Someone to talk to who understands it.  She gets it.  Totally and completely.

I asked her about her therapy and what she found helped.  As it turns out, she attended a marital seminar developed by Anne Brecht, you know, the woman who thought her husband’s affair was the best thing that ever happened to her? – yeah her.  I immediately went to the website, and started to read about their seminars, and their help for couples.  They have survived infidelity and come out the other side.  They now help others to do the same.  Recently, Anne and her husband appeared on Dr. Phil:

So I spent some time on their site today and listened to some of the teleconferences that they have.  They are free to call in for, and they have a schedule of discussion topics and you can sign up for notices of upcoming calls.  If you, or someone you know needs support, please pass along the information. I will share it at the bottom of this post.  I listened today to a woman who, along with her husband, serve as mentors in Anne and her husband’s marital retreat weekend seminars.  For the first time since my husband’s affair, I HEARD the voice of someone who has experienced this.  It was no longer just black words on a white page.  This woman exists, she feels, she has experienced it.  For the first time, I felt as though I am really not alone and that there ARE real people out there who are going through this.  There are people out there who understand.  It sounds cliche, but I really for the first time felt connected.  Now. I’ve not attended a support group, and so perhaps this is why I am coming to this feeling so late, but it was so nice.  I cried at my desk, and then took a long walk.  I felt better though than I have in a long time because it felt hopeful.

So I emailed Wendy to ask her more about the seminars she attended.  She told me that it was unlikely one would be in my city, but I could travel to a nearby one.  In searching today, I looked on the site, and low and behold there IS one coming soon where I live and I was beyond thrilled.  I emailed her right away to tell her about it, and she replied “SIGN UP!” and I did.  I emailed my husband, told him about it, he went to the site, and was 100% game.  Now, it means leaving the kids for a weekend with ongoing childcare.  My husband and I are hard pressed for childcare having no one reliable with whom to leave our children.  Thankfully one of my friends stepped up and has offered to live at my house that weekend with her son, and look after my brood.  I could not be more relived and indebted to her for her sacrifice and help.

I am really looking forward to this weekend. It will mark the first time my husband and I have spent a weekend away from our children, but I think it will be for the very best reason – the saving of our marriage.  I think we’ve come very far so far, but I think we have more ground to cover.  I think this will also help my husband to find the support of other Wayward spouses who can share their stories, understand his struggles and offer him the support he has been lacking.  Let’s face it, I can share the story and get support, he can’t always count on that.  He was the one who strayed, he is the “bad guy”, and not everyone takes too kindly to what he did.   My own mother never forgave him  before she passed a few months ago.  He will always live with that.  So, from his perspective too, I think this weekend will be very healing, and I am looking forward to it.

For those interested in the information, the website is http://www.beyondaffairs.com and for the free tele seminars, go to: http://www.beyondaffairs.com/teleseminars.htm

Needless to say, I can now understand what Anne meant, that I was unable to see because I hadn’t EARNED the perspective.  I say earned because I’ve put in a lot of miles, a lot of tears and a lot of work to get here.  I’ve earned the ability to see for myself what she meant.  Through facing their issues head-on, they both had to grow and turn to one another in order to make their marriage stronger.  Having faced this, they communicate better, are more connected and closer than they have ever been.  While Anne acknowledges that his affair was the most DEVASTATING thing that has ever happened to her, she also wants her reader to know that with the work put in, it has also taken them to this wonderful place that they wouldn’t be in had they not faced the issue at all.  In essence, his affair forced them to make changes.  As she says, “you can either be bitter, or be better”.  I think I will opt for option 2.  I am trying.

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Comments

  1. That is awesome! I’m so glad your going, you wont regret it. We did it and it was a marriage saver.

    Wendy

  2. Cedar Kennan says:

    Congratulations! You have worked so hard, you totally earned this breakthrough!

  3. OMG this is exactly the talk my counselor and I had today… I so want to share this with my husband but I don’t think he is ready to hear it. he 100% refuses to break all contact with the woman he HAD (his term) is having the affair with. so much of what was said in this DR Phill segment is true for me. I wonder if my husband would go to one of these weekends with me. or does he need to come to the understanding that what he percieves are the things I did to push him to the affair or just a cop out before it will be of benifit. so I am off to check out this web site… thanks for your blog, again!!!

    • I am so sorry to hear this.

      I was listening to a trleseminar today on “beyond affairs” and she said something that I wouldn’t previously have been able to communicate, but have known intuitively as a result of my experience. That is that while a woman may want to heal, the deciding factor for whether a marriage will survive an affair is the husband’s handling of the fallout. Does he admit it, or was he caught? Does he blame you, or accept full responsibility? Is he willing to break all contact in order to devote himself fully to the marriage? If not, then he is still IN the affair, and is just asking you to be ok with that. Who can be??!? You CANNOT believe that there is anything that you did to
      Push him to the affair. No no no. It was his choice to have the affair and he made a bad one. He had the choice, upon realizing he was missing something to turn TOWARDS you and figure it out, not seek it elsewhere. My husband liked the admiration and respect this woman gave him. Like the man in the Dr Phil segment, he felt that she praised him wen I didn’t. He felt that she told him he was sexy when I didn’t. He’d taken up running and was the fittest he’d ever been, 6-pack abs, muscle….and I wasn’t commenting. She was though. He felt good around her. He needed the reassurance. She gave him what he needed and since she was competing with me, she was trying way harder than I was. It didnt mean he needed to have an affair. It didn’t entitle
      Him to that exit strategy. There is nothing you did to push him to the place he out himself in, and you are not responsible for how he chose to deal with his issues. Nothing.

      I am sure you know this, but before he can heal you, and that IS his responsibility here, he needs to acknowledge his error and break all contact. He needs to devote himself 500% to you, the marriage and your healing. He has to accept the role of being your punching bag while you vent and heal. He did this. This is his price to pay if he wants back what he compromised.

      As hard as this healing is, I know that I am blessed. My husband confessed. I didn’t find him out. He also broke all contact (it can’t help that she is psycho, can it?) and devoted himself to me and my healing. He’s taken my verbal lashings, bowed his head and apologized over and over. He feels shame and regret. I see that. He wants me to be happy even if he isn’t because he says he caused it. He puts my needs first, and will always have my healing as a priority even if I end the marriage- he will still help me feel better. That’s his promise. If he weren’t so accommodating to me, hadn’t broken contact, or agreed to the counseling and self-exposure, I don’t know where I would be, but chances are if have asked him to leave. I couldn’t bear the pain of the affair and seeing him negate my pain by not taking responsibility.

      I’d send an email and ask about when is the ideal time and where you should be in the process. I think they also allow one partner but you’ll get better benefit with two.

      He can’t have his cake and eat it too, staying married and wanting a mistress. He wouldn’t accept it if it were flipped. He has a choice to make. I hope you can both work on it together. Take a listen to those seminars. Hearing real people recount their experiences was really healing. I hope you find it so too.

      • I have actually been going through this longer than you. and his affair is not over. I have been getting used to the idea of separating. and will probably follow through after I graduate college in may, and come back from my trip. it sickens me. He does not realize any of the things you talked about and he may never. He has some serious emotional issues he needs to work on. he has gone to a counselor and is going to get a new one closer to where he works as soon as the behavioral health offices where he was going recomends one. He has admitted that he needs help. I know nothing is going to change between us until he gets healthy, and I get healthy, which I am closet to now more than ever. i am rambling. thanks for your comment. you have been a comfort and help ever since I discovered your blog.

  4. Ditto
    It is so great to have other’s finally get it !
    And how wonderful you can share this enlightened perspective, that most people don’t begin to understand until it happens to them !

  5. still believing says:

    i am probably going to be the most hated responder on this blog, why? because i am one of the guys that had an affair on my wife, and the end result was a horrendous divorce that has effected my most precious little girl. i have sent an email to the author of the book you have talked about and asked her some questions concerning rather or not this book might help my ex-wife to begin to heal.
    What i want to relate her to you folks that have been wounded and devastated by the action of “us”, the guys who have made the ultimate betrayal. And although i had an emotional affair the damage is in fact far more reaching than an actual affair because with an emotional affair you have no one you can go and cuss out, or slam the door in their face, or call and unload on as a spouse, you really are left to deal with the fallout. so i also can say i “get it” and accept the responsibility of the affair. But what kills me when i am reading some of these comments and some of the responses as well as some of the blogs out there concerning the “bad guys”, that is where i feel you guys DON’T get it.
    i tried everything i could to save my marriage, i broke contact with certain friends for no other reason than my wife hated them and didn’t trust them, these were friends i have never been inappropriate with in any way and friends that were in my life before we met and were even in some cases friends that attended our wedding and expressed there happiness for my ex-wife and i in getting married. i went to counseling, i took verbal and even at times physical assault from her in order to let her “vent”. and although you should also know my affair was more than emotional due to my desire to look at porn and recreate the pain of my childhood as a victim of incest and molestation.
    yet it seemed that everything i tried never worked for any one of a number of reasons, and why didn’t it work? it wasn’t like i wasn’t showing up for counseling, it wasn’t like i wasn’t committed to giving it my all in this marriage, it wasn’t like i hadn’t learned my lesson form the pain i had caused in my marriage, HELL i wanted help in the worst kind of way. i WANTED NOTHING MORE THAN FOR MY WIFE TO HEAL AND FIND PEACE AND TRUST AGAIN.
    yet despite my willingness one thing rang true to me, she refused to participate in her own healing because i was the one that caused and had the affair. so she divorced me and i walked away from everything to save my daughter the pain of losing her home and her life. now i wished i would have fought, i wished i would have taken a friends advice and been as mean as i could be until “after” the divorce and then i could return to being a nice guy. because she has continued to see only my faults not recognizing that it took two to get married and it takes two to get divorced. another sad fact about my affair and as some would call it addiction to porn, was this one major fact that was discovered after my suicidal gesture. i was bi-polar and suffering from PTSD from my childhood. i didn’t need counseling per say, i needed chemical balancing in my brain. once i got on medicine i discovered i didn’t need the porn to punish my own shame. and that is my point to you ladies here. your husband may not want to break off his affair, and let me say he IS having an affair if he refuses to break it off, but have you ever thought that he may be getting the wrong advice from his counselor? that what he actually needs could be medicine for something that is wired wrong in his brain?
    yes we “bad guys” deserve a lot of what we get but i had an epiphany one day when i was caught by a friend lying to her about another woman….see a pattern here? this friend had every right to walk away from our friendship, she was given that very advice from numerous of her friends and even told i should suffer some kind of penalty and punishment for lying to her. instead what did this woman do to punish me? she forgave me, she told me never to lie to her again no matter what the cost and once she discussed her position and listened to mine she hugged my neck and we have been very close ever since that day. i even try and remember this action and act of love when i am dealing with others who have slighted me somehow and it’s amazing how much it heals a situation. now i am not trying to “win” you ladies over to my side, nope not at all, i accept my responsibility and my actions in having the affair in my marriage. but the thing i want you to see is sometimes it is as much a medical problem as a spiritual problem and without knowing this you may jump to a divorce before you really understand the cost. this divorce for my family has been devastating to a little girl who simply can not understand and who now seems so confused in her little mind why her mother has a new boyfriend. she came right out of the divorce and began a new relationship with another guy, this is clearly a rebound relationship and every thing she hated about me is in this guy in some element. he has porn on his facebook page and playboy so obviously although she touted porn as one of her reasons for divorce the truth is that simply doesn’t hold up to the test when this guy openly admits to it. unlike me this guy is shorter than my ex-wife and has little man syndrome big time…no pun intended.
    so in closing let me express to you guys that i sincerely hope and pray you find what ever it takes to get healed and in so doing you hold your marriage together and become the family you both want and desire in your hearts, and thats its for one another and no one else outside the marriage. but if your truly going to heal you will need to develop a healthier relationship with the Lord Jesus. i have found my own form of healing by pursuing a life of knowing, and i mean really knowing who God is and what his name is and what his desire is for me while i live here on this earth. i no longer have these overwhelming desires to seek out porn, or to have some stupid emotional affair with someone other than my wife, and although i realize now just how much i do love her and want her in my life i fear it may just be too late because she has not healed, she is extremely bitter, caught up in being pampered by her friends and given the “ok” for the divorce and soothed into believing that it was “all” my fault, and she is selfish and
    self-centered in her beliefs. i want nothing more than to bring my family back together, but i know that until she finds someway to face her own demons we will be at war as a couple until we either stop the abuse to each other or we find healing. i have replaced most of the stuff i have walked away from in the divorce. i was homeless for over a year if you can only imagine the pain from that ordeal. my child support although benefits my little girl, it also prevents me from doing the things i use to take for granted with her, like going on vacation and sharing my life with her. i am now resigned to the fact that i can not give her all that i have since i give so much to her mother to care for her and that allows them to go on vacation quite often and i fear this will one day cause my little girl to give up on her daddy who loves her so much i feel she is my next breath.
    well as one responder said….”i am rambling”. so may the lord help you ladies to heal, may you find peace love and happiness, and most of all may you find all of this in your marriage. don’t believe you have to give up on your marriage because its what others tell you, be radical and be brave and fight for what you believe in as a wife. if you are angered by my comments i apologize for any hurtful feelings i may have caused you, but my goal is pure in the sense that i only want folks to understand that many of the men that i have spoken with that have ever had any form of affair on there wives has felt utter shame, pain unimaginable, and a feeling of loss that may never be reclaimed, we hurt to and despite this pain we most want our wives to find healing from our stupid decisions. thanx so much for listening and reading this, i appreciate all of you in your journey to find this healing..

    • Wow! Thanks so much for this….from the cheaters perspective. It made me think about trying a little harder to forgive my husband for what he’s done :). Best of luck. Be kind to her ( ex ) and keep being a good dad. You will come out ahead in the end. 🙂

  6. Hi,

    My name is Melora Armstead, I’m a producer at HuffPost Live, the online streaming news network at the Huffington Post.

    Sorry for the quick turnaround, but we’re doing a 20 minute segment tomorrow (Thursday 5/1) @1:20PM/EST about how infidelity can make a marriage stronger, and I was emailing to see if you would possibly be available to participate in the segment and discuss your experience?

    To participate, you only need a computer with a webcam, stable internet connection, and headphones. We use Google Plus Hangouts to conduct our segments. The technology is very similar to SKYPE, and I can step you through the setup process if needed.

    If you would be available, please let me know and I’d be happy to provide further details. I can best be reached at melora.armstead@huffingtonpost.com.

    Many thanks,

    Melora

    MELORA ARMSTEAD
    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER
    AOL HUFFINGTON POST MEDIA GROUP

    HUFFPOST LIVE
    770 BROADWAY- 4TH FL
    NEW YORK, NY 10003
    (c) 508-627-0776

  7. Unbelieveable! I want to share my review on Dr Mutuma how I got my husband back and testify to the world. I got married to my husband about 4 years ago we start having problems at home like we stop sleeping on the same bed,arguing about little things he always come home late at night and sleeping with other women. I have never loved any man in my life except him. He is the father of my child and i don’t want to loose him because we have worked so hard together to become what we are today. Few months ago he now decided to leave me and the kid,being a single mother can be hard sometimes and so i have nobody to turn to and i was heart broken. I called my mom and explain everything to her,my mother told me about Dr Mutuma how he helped her solve the problem between her and my dad, i was surprise about it because they separated from each other for three and a half years and it was like a miracle how they came back together and love each other. I was directed to Dr Mutuma on his email: drmutumahouseofsolution121@gmail .com and explained everything to him,so he told me not to worry that he will cast a spell and make things come back to how we were, so much in love again and said my husband was under manipulation by a female controlling my husband. He said my
    problem will be solved within two days if i believe i said OKAY. So he cast a spell for me and after two days my lover came back on his kneels crying and begging me to forgive him. Am so happy now. Contact Dr Mutuma (drmutumahouseofsolution121@gmail. com) for any kind of relationship/marriage problem.

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