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Consequences ***Updated***


The Other Man / Woman The other side of the story: Support and discussion for those who find themselves involved with a committed partner.

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Old 22nd December 2017, 10:21 PM   #1
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Consequences ***Updated***

I've been reading these posts for a few weeks now, this is my first post.

I became involved with a MM over 2 1/2 years ago when my 23 year marriage was ending. My XH and I were great friends but I never felt "in love" with him I finally realized. I had just come to the point of thinking this was how it was supposed to be, that it wasn't like the movies. But after 23 years I realized I didn't really feel like I was living, just going through the motions. After not being able to deny to myself the reality of my XH's flings with other women in recent years (and realizing I wasn't that upset over them, just disgusted) I asked for a divorce.

The MM was separated from his wife at that time and they had lived apart for 9 months. He has always been honest about wanting to reconcile with his W, they have been married 26 years. He said he wasn't sure he was in love with her, but that he wanted to maintain their life together (much like my XH would have liked, he didn't want our divorce). MM was honest about his serial "flings", the cause of their separation. He claimed they hadn't had sex in many years (yes I know that's a common lie told by MM, but honestly my XH and I hadn't had sex for the last 10 years of our marriage so anything is possible). I felt numb and only half alive from the poor state of my marriage and I got involved with MM because I was just so happy to feel alive again. And then I fell in love, probably for the first time in my life.

Shortly after we started seeing each other he was diagnosed with throat cancer and the tumor was removed. Last year he was diagnosed with in operable liver cancer and given from 9 months to 5 years life expectancy. Since that point he has engaged in various forms of chemo and so far is holding things at bay, but reality is probably that it's only a matter of time before he loses the fight.

His wife moved back in with him in February of this year and we only had sporadic contact by text for several months. We ran into each other this past summer (after not seeing each other for over 2 months) and the physical A resumed, albeit with much less time together because he's hiding it from his W and pretending he's reconciled with her. I of course have no idea what she thinks. He claims they still don't have a physical relationship and that she keeps herself busy with friends and activities apart from him.

Our relationship since she moved back in does torment me because they are back together, at least as far as most people can see and it disgusts me that I would be involved in that kind of relationship.

He says he loves her (if not "in love" with her) and her family and wants that security and stability and I understand that, especially given his health situation.

He tells me that he loves me and that I'm his best friend, and at different points he has discussed initiating divorce (I realize that's very unlikely after all this time and because of his health) and that I'm "special" and our relationship is different than any other he's had and that the others never lasted more than a brief period. I fully understand that he is very well lying his butt off about any number of things. I know I could never trust him, he's lied to his W for more than 20 years. I know I need to break free from him, but I love him, and additionally I don't want to walk away from him while he's in a fight for his life.

So my reason for posting is two-fold:

(1) Has anyone else been in an A where a terminal illness was diagnosed in one of the APs, and if so, how did you handle it?

(2) For anyone who has been the OM or OW, why do you think you were susceptible to getting into the A and settling for crumbs of attention? Why did you stay and if you're out of it, what was the final straw?

I'm trying to figure this out for myself in order to get out of the A. Even though I'm miserable (for example right now, during the holidays, knowing he's spending time with his W and extended family - they have no children, neither do I), I still am not ready to let go. It's crazy and inexplicable.

Thanks for any input any of you might have.
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Old 22nd December 2017, 11:27 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Finding my way View Post

So my reason for posting is two-fold:

(1) Has anyone else been in an A where a terminal illness was diagnosed in one of the APs, and if so, how did you handle it?

(2) For anyone who has been the OM or OW, why do you think you were susceptible to getting into the A and settling for crumbs of attention? Why did you stay and if you're out of it, what was the final straw?

I'm trying to figure this out for myself in order to get out of the A. Even though I'm miserable (for example right now, during the holidays, knowing he's spending time with his W and extended family - they have no children, neither do I), I still am not ready to let go. It's crazy and inexplicable.

Thanks for any input any of you might have.
(1) No

(2) I was susceptible because I had been lonely in my marriage for many years and husband didn't care to hear it or work on things. MM got me at a most vulnerable state, and I thought it was meant to be because he was also in a miserable marriage. I took all crumbs threw my way because I was starving, then when MM started treating me like crap, I was stuck on our magic we shared and couldn't let it. Stayed bc I loved him.

I left because during one of his push/pulls, I asked him what was the difference of being with me one week but not the next and he replied he was choosing to ignore what God wanted when he was with me. He'd always return, though.

I left because I always gave him thoughtful gifts and put lots of effort into it, even if not expensive. He loved them. Him, not so much with me. For my milestone b'day, I got a Bluetooth iPhone speaker that came from the dollar store and a box of $1 candy. He knew I desperately wanted a charm for my bracelet. Didn't need to be $$ or romantic. Then again, he was proud of that speaker...maybe I'm the witch. Never got much else in the years we were together.

What finally nailed me leaving was when he answered a question I asked and he replied he might not be ok if I weren't in his life, but like an encyclopedia book on a shelf, I'd become part of his history and he'd be able look back at it at times. He said he'd put me in a box when he was at home and could pretend all was fine and play house.

He still wants to be my bestie. He still sends me texts.

(That's how they think about us. Move on and move quickly.)
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Old 23rd December 2017, 1:23 AM   #3
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Finding my way,

The terminal illness is a hook to keep you involved, as you know.

My xMM did not have an illness, but he is a war veteran. He suffered an injury that retired him from the military, and that had been a major hook for me.

So much has happened since the beginning that now I hardly think of that hook.

The pain of having him in my life just got to be more than the pleasure of it.

Since I ended it, it has become quite clear that he didn't actually love me - not in any "real" or sustainable way. The little he put in not only did not compare to what I put it (nor what I had to offer), but he was only putting in just enough to string me along so I would service him.

I had to free myself of those pesky hooks, and that took a very long time. He took up a lot of my time. So, I had to replace his presence with other people, events, anything really... It really took a long time. But it has happened.

What was the final straw? Well, there were a lot of little straws and they just got to be so heavy. Let's see. He and his wife had a baby that he hid from me. He "ran away" from her to me - only to run right back to her. I allowed him to ruin the possibility of a relationship I might have had with a single guy thinking he was my "friend". He asked me for large sums of money at least twice knowing that I had a plan to buy a house, but no fallback or crutch or husband. He was taking care of someone else and expecting me to take over some of her duties and expecting me to be loyal to him and expecting full access to my place. He proved to be a liar - even about simple things. He proved that he would bust my boundaries at will...

Given all of those little straws, I would have to say that the final straw had been him basically admitting that he wouldn't entertain "friendship" with me unless that "friendship" included sex.

Seriously guy...

I can get sex anywhere pretty much.

My cost/benefit analysis included what he brought to the table. Which turned out to be not too much of nothing. A time suck and sunk costs.

Last edited by Vivir; 23rd December 2017 at 1:26 AM..
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Old 23rd December 2017, 6:30 AM   #4
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Thanks for the replies, outside input from others who have experience is comforting.

Reading these posts has helped me distance myself at least a little from my MM by seeing similarities in both his behavior and in my thoughts and feelings about our relationship to others in an affair. It's so much easier to see things clearly when you read about someone else's experiences.

I fear that I won't be open to being open to another man while I'm still involved with my MM and I realize NC is probably the only way I can move past this. Unfortunately I don't seem to be at the point of being able to walk away and I regularly wonder just how much it will take get to that point. It's at least somewhat comforting to see that I'm not the only one, but discouraging to see how difficult it apparently is to choose to actually make that break.
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Old 23rd December 2017, 6:54 AM   #5
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Anonymous Text

I just posted my first thread yesterday with my story. One more thing that I've been curious about but not seen specifically mentioned (I might have missed it) is about receiving an anonymous text.

I, as the OW, received an anonymous text - "Just thought you should know, not only are you sleeping with a married man but you're not the only one. Disgusting!". I used a paid internet search to identify the number, but it came back to a married couple whose names I had never heard. My MM says he doesn't know the names either.

I don't give my number out to a lot of people so I'm guessing someone got ahold of his phone and got my number. He has an account he shares with his BW, plus the cliche second phone. He said my name is entered in his contacts as a male-sounding version of my real name. He contacts me by both phones.

Even though I didn't bother to ask (I wouldn't trust his answer), he says he's not seeing anyone else and he has no idea how anyone would get my number. I believe the text came through a third party, either a friend of his BW or possibly another OW. It's had it's desired effect on me and is part of my arsenal in trying to distance myself from my MM.

Has anyone else received a similar text?
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Old 23rd December 2017, 9:36 AM   #6
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"Just thought you should know, not only are you sleeping with a married man but you're not the only one. Disgusting!".

Even though I didn't bother to ask (I wouldn't trust his answer)
No, I've never received a text like this.

If I can't trust my partner, I wouldn't be sleeping with him.
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Old 23rd December 2017, 10:43 AM   #7
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I will say, when I first read your post it tugged at my heart strings... for a woman who found some happiness after a long and lonely marriage. And, because he was diagnosed with a terminal illness.

However, upon further reflection and after reading your second post, I am reminded that this story is actually the same as every other story of infidelity... He is a serial cheater and you are settling for so much less than you deserve.

He has gone back to his wife and family to live the rest of his days. Perhaps, you can just be grateful for the fact that he helped you to leave an unhappy marriage and know that there is love out there for you... You just have to go and find it now.
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Old 23rd December 2017, 11:13 AM   #8
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Thanks for your replies Bailey B. You are absolutely right.

I am trying to move on and find happiness, my reason for posting was for tips on how to do that. I definitely have gotten good information from all the posts available on this site. I most definitely realize I shouldn't be involved with someone I can't trust, or with a MM for sure. Honestly how can anyone involved with a married man trust him, knowing he's lying to the person he's made vows with? That's my motivation for trying to move on and looking for help in doing that.

Logically I have absolutely no doubt that I should cut ties with him, but as so many people on here demonstrate, logic doesn't make things easier to let go, otherwise none of us would be involved in even a ONS. Knowing I should just move on and finding the ability to do it are two very different things.

No, the terminal diagnosis doesn't change the core matter I'm dealing with, but it complicates it, leaves me with guilt at the thought of choosing to cut contact with him when I do believe I make a difference in his life. That's why I was curious if anyone had dealt with something like that before and could give me perspective I haven't been able to find by myself.

That's why I chose the username I did. I have every intent of finding my way out of this unhealthy situation, I can just use a little light to help
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Old 23rd December 2017, 12:47 PM   #9
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The man has terminal cancer and has probably not a long time to live.

Have you ever considered how that would pan out?
How you would fit into his last days, weeks, months?
His wife and her family will not accept you with open arms I guess, and he may be in no fit state to keep up contact with you.
How will you deal with that?
You will not be allowed into the family home to see him and even the hospital maybe out of bounds for you. You either need to remain in the dark, or you will be excluded at every turn and your appearance will no doubt cause much distress.

I think it is probably better for all concerned including you, if you bow out now.
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Old 23rd December 2017, 11:08 PM   #10
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Thanks for your input elaine567. I understand the situation you describe, I've given that thought already. I'm getting better at distancing myself but I'm just not all the way there yet. As long as he's doing relatively well and reaching out to me (I don't initiate contact anymore) I can't walk away yet. Knowing I'll be shut out at the end doesn't change things much for me for right now. I'm not sure what my breaking point is - I'm trying to figure that out. It's crazy, I know.
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Old 25th December 2017, 9:56 PM   #11
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Are affairs always discovered?

I'm curious if most affairs are eventually discovered. Mine has lasted more than 2 1/2 years. The information I find by just googling deals with HOW affairs are discovered, not statistics on how many actually are discovered. I read a l of references to D Days here on LS so it seems at least for those posting here the majority are discovered at some point.
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Old 25th December 2017, 10:14 PM   #12
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I'm curious if most affairs are eventually discovered. Mine has lasted more than 2 1/2 years. The information I find by just googling deals with HOW affairs are discovered, not statistics on how many actually are discovered. I read a l of references to D Days here on LS so it seems at least for those posting here the majority are discovered at some point.
Yes, most affairs don't go undiscovered. Most betrayed spouses are aware of affairs, sometimes they just "let it go" or ignore it, for many different reasons.

I can almost guarantee that after two and a half years your affair is known, or at least he very least suspected.
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Old 25th December 2017, 10:26 PM   #13
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I'm curious if most affairs are eventually discovered. Mine has lasted more than 2 1/2 years. The information I find by just googling deals with HOW affairs are discovered, not statistics on how many actually are discovered. I read a l of references to D Days here on LS so it seems at least for those posting here the majority are discovered at some point.
It depends. I would say most short term affairs are not discovered. A one night stand or hook-up is easier to just brush aside like it never happened. Longer term affairs tend to be discovered because it eventually becomes impossible to keep everything compartmentalized. One or both people start to slip up because subconsciously they want to be caught. They want it to end. No one really wants to be living in hell.
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Old 25th December 2017, 11:01 PM   #14
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I was in an almost decade long affair with MM.

To my knowledge he was never discovered or even suspected.

We lived 50 miles apart with no mutual friends or connections.

In hindsight, he had probably been cheating all his life and was very slick at covering his tracks.

Poppy.
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Old 25th December 2017, 11:04 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Poppy47 View Post
I was in an almost decade long affair with MM.

To my knowledge he was never discovered or even suspected.

We lived 50 miles apart with no mutual friends or connections.

In hindsight, he had probably been cheating all his life and was very slick at covering his tracks.

Poppy.
*nods*

If you’re slick, careful, and lucky ....
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