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Wife shares detailed saga of confronting husband & mistress during secret vacation. AITA? PARTS 1& 2 OF 4 PART STORY

Wife shares detailed saga of confronting husband & mistress during secret vacation. AITA? PARTS 1& 2 OF 4 PART STORY


When this woman is determined to tell the story of confronting her husband and his affair partner, she asks the internet:

"My husband is currently on a vacation with his mistress & I'm confronting them.. PART 1 & 2. AITA?"

Hello Reddit! Forgive me as I am new to the online community. Just wanted to tell my story and maybe get some input. I [37F] accidentally found out last month my husband [38M] was using 'work trips' as an excuse to sleep with his also married coworker who lives across the country.

When I say accidentally; he sent me a screen shot of Amazon purchases for our children and included at the bottom of the photo was a delivery to this woman.

So yes, the worried wife in me checked his search history and email. It was all right there! I learned his November trip was a romantic getaway but this current one is luxurious!

A spa resort complete with couples massages, couples cooking classes and monogramed bathrobes from etsy. He mailed her a box of gifts a few days ago for Christmas (how sweet), he purchases sexy lingerie, sent her money on venmo and even started planning a January trip to Las Vegas. I was furious when I learn all this but I kept my composure.

My plan: He left this morning for his 'work trip' but before he left I gathered all evidence of his affair. I spent 4 weeks collecting emails, credit card statements, reservations and confirmations. I wrote him a 10 page letter, put it in an envelope and taped it inside the lining of his suitcase.

I plan on sending a group text to him and his mistress right after check in telling them to enjoy their trip. I will also inform them that a letter is in his suitcase and that I want a divorce. I wrote a special section just for her and I want to make sure she sees it so I will be emailing her the letter as well.

He is currently in the air. My group text goes out this evening. Stay tuned...


His flight landed 1 1/2 hours ago. He told me he would text me when he landed and he has yet to do so. I have text him twice, they were delivered but not read. I checked our phone records and he text both me and her during his lay over.

His email shows no Uber receipt from his final destination airport to his hotel. She must have picked him up. Something I probably should have clarified in my OP. She lives in the state he is visiting. So he flew alone.

I will be sending a group text to both him and his mistress in 2 hours as that will be 4pm their time and check in.


Sent pictures of our children and he did not respond. FYI he is in the middle of the desert.My texts are going through green which puts a monkey wrench in my plan for a group text to him and his mistress. Need suggestions. Should I call the hotel? Connect right to their room. I worked so hard for this, it has to be tonight. HELP!


Thank you to everyone standing by and waiting. My best friend has come to my house to help me through this. It seems my texts are going through green (undelivered) but when my friend tried it is blue and delivered.

HE HAS BLOCKED ME! I guess that helps his guilt.The plan now is to call the hotel. Will wait a few minutes after check in to make the call. Very soon. Please stand by.


Like most of you predicted he does not care, He had zero answers for my questions. That was. the mot hurtful part. But guess what, I have all the emotional support and economic support so i'm not mad. Every question I asked he had no response because his mistress was sitting there.

I suspect when he is home alone with me, his answers will be different. I have made sure that he will not emotionally and financially f me because I have secured support from family and friends. He can go F himself!!!!!!


Called his hotel room. Talked to his mistress and finally lost my shit. He ended up calling me a few minutes later and had zero empathy. I'm shocked, but I'm not. He said a divorce was in order and fought me on nothing.

I expected him to be sad, he was not, but thats ok. I started packing up his shit, I have some great friend who helped me put everything in the garage. Good riddance? I guess so...

The Morning After

I wake this morning broken. My house is in shambles as I went on a rampage yesterday ripping photos off the wall, throwing his stuff in piles on the floor and breaking random objects in anger. Now that I've had a nights sleep I feel that I am a bit clearer in my thinking as I analyze the 'conversation' we had yesterday.

He was different on the phone. That was not the man I know, but who was the man I've known? Because everything was a lie. The only thing he cared about on the phone was getting the kids.

Which is perfectly ok, he should want to see his kids. But he refused to answer any question I had or admit to anything. I personally feel his lack of remorse was because he was sitting in front of his mistress.

If I confronted him at home this would not have been his reaction. When he comes home Monday night I expect to see a different man. Also, in my conversation with the mistress I learned she is recently separated.

I called my mom. That was hard. While she and my dad have always been loving and supporting it was hard to make that phone call. I felt like a failure. I know it wasn't my doing but to admit that I made a poor choice in a spouse was difficult.

Was this all because of a mistake I made 13 years ago? Honestly it doesn't matter. I have 2 days to empty my house of his things.

Who do I tell? Do I call his dad? Do I tell his mother? Best friend? Work buddies? I wish there was a manual on how to do this because I'm lost. Even with all my preparation I'm still humiliated.

Luckily he did not take his house keys when he left. So no need to change the locks, I'll be removing his keys and sending him on his way. I don't plan on seeing him when he gets home Monday night. Doors are locked, everything you own is in the garage, have your people talk to my people and I'll see you never.

My friends and family have been wonderful. I am so fortunate to have such great people in my life. Yesterday they came to help me move all of his clothing to the garage. His collectibles were all packed up and sitting here, waiting to be appraised. It took a very long time and I was exhausted afterwards; but it was necessary.

I honestly don't think he expects me to have gone to such great lengths to remove him from my life. Because I was so emotional when I confronted him there is a chance that he thinks I will want to reconcile. Fat chance, buddy. His flights lands a little before 10pm tonight.

When he Ubers back home the doors will be locked. He told me on the phone he was just getting his car and leaving. I will be holding him to that. Something I should have mentioned earlier, the house is in my name only.

He had no credit when we first started looking so everything is in my maiden name and purchased by me. Health insurance, car insurance, cell phones, utilities are all in my name. The only thing his name is on is his car.

I think he realizes now that could all come back to bite him. I don't want a messy divorce, I'm willing to listen to his demands and try and meet in the middle on as many things as possible. He obviously doesn't care anymore so I'm going to do my best to not care and treat this like a business deal.

It's been a few days since his return. For a man who so diligently planned a secret retreat with his mistress he took no time to plan for his return 'home.' He has been living in the basement since Monday. I allowed him to watch the children open gifts on Christmas but he has since returned to the basement.

We have contacted 3 mediators and have appointments next week to start the mediation process. It's obviously over. We had a conversation/argument upon his return and he actually asked about reconciliation. I laughed. I laughed uncontrollably. Of course he pushed blame stating that our marriage has been over for a long time.

Well, that's news to me. His actions of an affair were selfish and avoidant. He didn't want to have that hard conversation with me about counseling or divorcing and this route was easier and a lot more fun. Let's face it, he likes the attention of 2 women loving and pining over him.

Well, I'm not longer playing that game. She wins, and oh what a prize he is! I have been amicable about talking about the terms of our separation. My biggest hang up is her. He may continue seeing her and I have questions about her character.

What kind of woman/mother cheats with a man she knows is married and knows has children? When I confronted her on the phone last Saturday and asked her that question she was silent.

I asked if she was 'sorry' and it was as if the line went dead. That kind of person I do not want around my children. People who show no remorse, especially when they are in the wrong, are not kind people.

I have found solace in friends and family and thank you to everyone's recommendation of ChumpLady. I'm half way through the book, read through the website and find it so helpful. Thank you again to everyone. I can't believe the outpouring of support.

To the trolls, sorry you think I'm an unfit and inattentive wife, but cheaters cheat because they want to. Thank you again to all, not sure if you want a mediation update or if my story is over. Either way, I'm happy to have 'met' you all.

If you listen to the books and advice always given about cheaters it all says the same thing: It's not you, they made a choice. MY STBX insists things were bad. While I don't think we were Pam and Jim or Lucy and Ricky, I think things were good. This process has made me review who I am, who I've been and who I want to be. Could I have made changes?

Yes. Was I perfect? Absolutely not. But my decisions and actions were never detrimental to our marriage. They were more like sacrifices. And now I'm having those sacrifices thrown at me and I'm being called neglectful. Is all this about attention?

A narcissistic need to be the apple of someone's eye? Him and the AP are now blissfully in the honeymoon stage. Vacations, late night phone calls like teenagers, present buying, etc. But what happens when the other shoe drops? What happens when she sees that he has very little patience with children?

That he will walk past a a sink full of dishes completely blind to them? When he doesn't pay the phone bill for 2 months because he is spending money on silly gadgets? What then? While it's not my problem, I'm sure his AP will take issue with these things.

Perhaps then she will be put in the situation I've been in for a decade. Should she be the glue and hold it all together or should she neglect responsibilities for his neediness? I've been told by him ( someone who is having a relationship and spending large sums of money on someone else) that I'm at fault.

Perhaps, but what about the decades of cleaning up your messes? Maybe if I would have had 2 hour conversations with him every night things would be different, but to be honest, I'm happy I'm here.

Now reflecting back I see how under appreciated I was. How neglected I was. All these year I thought I was helping but I was really being taken advantage of and this affair is no different.

Just a word of advice to all the mess cleaners, excuse makers, and spouse sheltering people reading this. Stop. Stop now. I've learned that all the 'helping' is simply them learning how to manipulate you. Draw that line in the sand.

Prepare for an uncomfortable situation when they start to stumble under the pressures of real life. But don't lose yourself. I lost myself years ago and it's not a place you want to be.

We had our first mediation appointment via Zoom yesterday. It was very amicable, but only because I don't want to fight and I just want this to be over. He apparently wants nothing. Not the house, not the furniture, not what he's entitled to of my pension; he just wants to be done as well.

As I've been packing up things in the house to declutter I've been offering him things, but he wants nothing. I suspect the moment our marriage is dissolved he will be packing up his collectables and clothing and driving across the country to live with her.

I guess I should be ok with this as I don't want to be married to him anymore. It just kills me that he will be moving in with her and helping her raise her 2 children while mine are fatherless. It makes me so angry. Seething. The man who was abandoned by his father is now doing the same thing.

Something he said would never ever happened because of the mental issues it has given him today. Well, it looks like that, as well as mostly everything else, was a lie. Again, I take solace in the fact that their honeymoon phase will be short lived. Reality will smack them both in the face and she will realize that he can be more hurt than help.

While I wish him well and hope the best, our kids deserve more than a Christmas/Easter/one week in the summer father. No dad at basketball games, cub scouts, birthday parties and school plays. Meanwhile AP will have him and her children's biological father. I guess nothing in life is fair and my boys will have to learn that lesson early than I had hoped.

My STBX left yesterday morning to visit her. I told him to go. I didn't want to spend NYE with him and our COVID circle friends who we celebrate with have zero interest in seeing him either. He booked a flight 30 minutes after I told him to go.

My only stipulation was that he is back for this weekend as it's my birthday and I really need a day to myself. I've watched the kids for 3 weekends now while he went to see his mistress, I thought I at least deserved my birthday to relax. He text me while he was boarding that he won't be home for my birthday.

Well then... He claims when he booked this he booked a return for the evening of my birthday. When he tried to change it he was put on standby, it would cost $1000 to change, it was a red eye etc.

The excuses kept coming. He apparently does not realize I have access to the internet as well and flights are less than $300 with the airline he flew. I told him this and he said those flights weren't there when he booked (lies) and he will take care of it. I just want him to be honest.

If you don't want to be here for my birthday, just say it. If you don't want to spend the day with your children, just tell me. I can't force you to be a parent. I told him the flights were available and affordable, it's his choice to rebook. Ball is in your court. That's all I can do, right? Stay tuned for an update on his return this weekend..

It was 12:40am on NYE and there was still no call from him. I was angry for no other reason than I explained to the kids that even though daddy wasn't with us he would call at midnight to talk to them and wish them a Happy New Year. I was made to be a liar.

So, I text my STBX and his excuse was, 'they are with their friends, I didn't want to bother them'. Excuse me? Bother them? You mean you didn't want your kids to bother you is what you are really saying.

If I was across the country on NYE without my kids I would have called and done the countdown with them via facetime. I think most parents would. But not him. He said, "If you would have told me that you told the kids I'd call then I would have." He tried to spin this on me, that I created this mess.

Why do I have to tell you that you need to call your children at midnight? This small act said a lot to me. Our children are not a priority. I guess he didn't want to ruin his perfect vacation at his new girlfriend's house with her children. He has a nice new family now. Today is my birthday and he returns this evening.

I told him in my NYE text that I will speak to him on the 12th, our next mediation meeting because I'm done. I tried to be civil for the kids but he is not putting forth the effort for them.

The past few days have been strange. We rarely talk (a decision on both our parts) and when we do it's about mediation, plans moving forward, or the kids. We have been civil and communicating well about those items. We are also friendly in front of the children as not to upset them.

The situation is strange because we are getting along, there is no arguing, it's a shared focus to just get through mediation and divorce. That's fine by me. Last night while I was cleaning the kitchen I heard him on the phone in the basement. I guess he didn't realize the door was left open by one of the children.

Not wanting to be a part of the drama anymore I went to close the door. At that point I heard him tell her how 'crazy' I have been acting. Excuse me? We don't speak and when we do it's very civil. How is that crazy? Well, he proceeded to tell her about a conversation we had and he lied about everything.

While the conversation part was true he told her I exploded, I was in a rage, I was crying etc. None of that was true. He explained how he laughed in my face at my rage, also not true because there was no rage. I had told him awhile back before the NYE debacle that I would start dating eventually and he proceeded to tell her that I was bragging about guys I'm meeting.

So far from the truth. I slammed the basement door. I'm sure he knows I heard. So I ask, 'Why the need to lie and make me a villain?' We aren't staying together, I have no reason to fight with you anymore, that's why we are paying a mediator. Why start lying to your new girlfriend that you love? How is that a good way to start a relationship? I don't know what is happening here...

This is my concern: This woman and him are in love and want to start a life together. Ok, thats fine, God bless and congrats. But, this woman only knows me by the stories (which I'm assuming are all lies) he has told her about me.

If he does move across the country to be with her, how can I trust a woman who hates me because of misinformation to treat my children properly?

I don't care if she hates me personally, I'll still sleep fine at night, but now I'm worried about sending my kids in the summer to stay with them. I want to confront him about this but I know I can't. Maybe it's not that I can't, but I don't know how. Also, he has told no one we are separated and definitely has not told people why. How come?

You initiated this, you cheated, you are happy now, so why can't you tell people? He told his father that he was bringing the kids alone to visit him because he and I 'weren't seeing eye to eye at the moment.'

What?! I would assume he's afraid to face the music or is just finding comfort in the little love bubble he has created. He chooses to not face reality. He has yet to look for an apartment for when the divorce is finalized but has booked another fight out to see her for Valentine's Day. He is refusing to face reality and it's so frustrating.

Yesterday was our second mediation appointment. While it was amicable, there was some obvious tension. The tension was not on my end but more on his. Let me explain... During our first mediation we brought up the topic that he might move out of state.

At yesterdays meeting I asked what we would do about custody if he moves to this particular state. When I mentioned the state by name the mediator was confused. This prompted her to ask him why this state that is so far away. His answer? "Well......." Then silence.

He couldn't put into words the fact that he was leaving to be with his girlfriend. I had to finally chime in realizing we are paying by the hour that he was moving to be with his girlfriend.

I realized later that was the first time he had semi-confessed to having an affair and a girlfriend to anyone. If you love this person so much why can't you just say it out loud? That whole situation confuses me.

Anyway, when it comes to dollars and cents I will be fine. He will also be fine. He will have enough to do what he needs and so will I. We have agreed to a physical custody scenario that allows him weekend and dinner visits. Fine by me, I want my boys to have their father. But, the situation becomes a bit more difficult when he moves.

While he said yesterday he plans to stay here at least a year, I doubt that will actually happen. When he does move across the country he wishes to return for one weekend of every month to see the boys. Again, I'm fine with this scenario but where will he stay that weekend?

He has no family. Will he just be taking the boys to a hotel? Again, I don't think he actually thought this through. This is a problem I/we will tackle when he does decide to move.

Lastly, the mediator said it could take about 2 months to finalize everything. He and I spoke after the session to go over some facts and figures and I brought up the tentative finalization date of our marriage. I told him how 2 months is a good amount of time to save some money and find an apartment to which he agreed.

I also reminded him about his promise to not return to visit her until our divorce is finalized or he has a place to live. He quickly became frustrated telling me that he knew and tried to shut down the conversation.

I told him I'm happy that we are on the same page but I'm not budging. If you leave while you still live here you can not come back, that is something we both agreed to.

Now the big question remains; Who does he break a promise with? Obviously it's a win win for me, stay home and help me with the kids while you save $500+ and move out quickly or leave to visit her and I get you out of the house sooner. I'm happy with either decision. I just want to move on with my life and enjoy my moments with my children.

When I took this dive into the Reddit community I had no idea where I would land. I thought my feet would hit shallow ground and I would be ankle deep on the banks in an uncomfortable swimsuit all alone. But to my surprise this deep ocean of Reddit readers have engulfed me into their warm waters and I am surrounded by a sea of support.

For this I am thankful. I am also so touched by the droves of people who have reached out for advice or offered their own experiences as lessons to be learned. To the ones seeking advice I tell them, I am not an expert swimmer. I am merely doggy paddling through this sea of hurt and confusion. Please don't use me as a sign of strength.

Because the truth is, I am not strong, I am you. I am the woman who reads because they are suspicious of late night phones call her husband takes. I am the spouse who has shouldered the entire family and is in desperate need of support. I am the woman who misses affection from her husband who is next to her in bed every night. I. Am. You.

To those people who have yet to catch their partner cheating but are suspicious, trust your gut. Cheating is a coward's choice so be braver than them and face the truth. To the spouse who is 'the fixer' and takes on every challenge, take a step back.

When you help (even with good intention) you are actually just hurting yourself. To the spouse who has tried everything to receive physical attention from their partner but to no avail, their affection is probably going somewhere else. These are lesson I wish I could have told myself months, if not years ago. Listen to me. Or just listen to you.

To the sharks in water who call me a 'bad mom', 'a crazy bitch', 'fake' or even just think I'm out of my mind, you will find no blood in this water. So it's best you move on and find a thread where the OP will chum the water for you.

It's so very easy to read and judge, this I understand. I just hope that if this ever happens to you that you will be as brave, logical and composed as you expect others to be. If not, you will find sharks circling you as well. So I hope you are as strong of a swimmer as you claim to be.

If you are still reading, my saga/survival continues. Our final mediation papers will arrive this week. We were able to settle everything at the last meeting on 1/12 and the documents just need our signature. After that, the divorce papers need to be served and filed with the county.

Then we await our court date which will be done via Zoom. Yes, a bit anticlimactic, but it will still serve its purpose of divorcing. He has started (finally) to look for an apartment but nothing is to his satisfaction. Maybe he is being picky or maybe he is comfortable living in the basement. Either way, once the divorce papers are stamped he needs to be gone.

He has started making phone calls to her during the day and I can hear him giggling downstairs. I'm happy he is happy, I really am. That isn't passive aggressive. I know I will be happy one day too, he just got there first and that's ok. I feel like my life is in limbo right now.

I can't move forward because I'm chained to the past. I'm hoping his move will be soon. I suspect he wants out for February 1st so he can go visit her for Valentines Day. I hope for his sake (and mine) that he makes his deadline. I will update again after I receive the mediation paperwork and divorce papers are served.

I'm sure that will stir up a lot of thought and emotion so I'm certain it will be a doozy. Till then, I'll keep doggy paddling.

If you have been following along then you know that there was a chance he would leave for Valentine's Day to go visit her. Well, he left this morning. He told the kids, "I'm going" as he walked out the door leaving me to explain a few hours later that he had to leave to 'work' when they started asking for him.

I have learned that I can't have expectations. Just because I would try to be more honest with the kids doesn't mean he would. I was really proud of the fact that I didn't even engage him in the discussion/debate/argument of going. Yes, I had loudly vocalized some feelings a week ago when he told me he was going but I have not engaged him about it since.

All I asked was for his flight info so that I would know when to expect him back. He did not provide this information; maybe he thinks I'm not entitled to it. Either way, he left and I was fine. While we had the conversation multiple times (in which he agreed) that he would not visit her again till he had an apartment he has reneged on that agreement.

Shocker. He claims that he has every right to be here (which he does legally) and he can do as he pleases. He put a down payment on an apartment a few days ago but says he doesn't know when he is moving.

What? The bills he pays in the house are less than the child support he will have to pay, so I think his decision to stay longer might be a financial one. I've offered him any piece of furniture he wants in the house. I even offered to pay for 1/2 of the cost of bunk beds for the boys. I just need him to leave. I have no idea why he is dragging his feet.

BUT, I learned through a mutual friend and former work colleague of theirs that she recently had COVID. When I say recently, I mean the board of health from her state said she could stop quarantining 3 days ago!

But what about her kids that are in the home? Where they living there during her quarantine? Are they positive? Perhaps they are asymptomatic? Will my STBX be bringing me and our children home a COVID souvenir?

For all those messaging me with concern and for updates, I apologize for my tardiness. It has been a heartbreaking 2 weeks. To amend for my absence I will be posting 2 updates tonight.

Let me start from the beginning. My STBX left for his 'get away' on 2/12 and did not return until 2/15. During his blissful vacation my family and I suffered a great loss of one of our most beloved member to COVID. I was a mess. Everyone I love was devastated.

I called my STBX on 2/13 and told him the prognosis was not good. It was loud where he was; there were children yelling. He informed me he was outside with her kids. Wow.

Can't remember the last time he took our children outside but I digress. I shouldn't have expected him to care about my bad news but he was concerned. I guess there is still a decent bone somewhere in him. That concern would not last long though.

Upon his return, as he usually does, he schedules a COVID test. He scheduled one for 4 days after his return but due to snow in our area he did not go. This I understand, the weather can not be controlled. Then he told me he rescheduled for 4 days later and then does not go.

When I questioned him his response was, "I feel fine." I suspected since she probably got a negative COVID test shortly before his arrival he felt safe in not getting one.

Not until Monday, 3/1, did he finally get tested. A full 2 weeks later. Why? You know my family just suffered a terrible loss to COVID, how could you be so reckless and insensitive? The insensitive question is rhetorical. I obviously know the answer already.

The day is approaching. Large boxes are being delivered to the house daily containing new furniture to be assembled. The sounds of packing tape being ripped from the spool flood the house every evening. He's moving out.

I'm over joyed! I'm so happy that I have actually started engaging him in conversation. Yes, we have to chat to figure out child support and scheduling but now I'm so ecstatic he's leaving I even ask about his move. I feel like a kid at Christmas!

While we were discussing his move (what he would be taking from the home and the schedule for seeing the children) I asked if he planned to visit her. No, this wasn't me prying, we need to set an overnight and weekend schedule for the kids and I was hoping to be accommodating to any trips he had planned.

But then my curiosity got the best of me but for a good reason; our children. I asked if she plans to come here to meet the kids. He replied in the affirmative and said she may come. Well, good for you both but I would like to meet her before she meets the children. He went silent.

I could tell he was rolling thoughts around in his head or perhaps trying to figure a way out of this situation but he came up empty. He honestly wanted to know why I needed to meet her. Excuse me, come again? You really think I would let my children spend time with someone I didn't know?

I'm the mother that interviews babysitters, why would you think I wouldn't want to meet her? He's claims to be worried that I won't be civil but he knows me better than that. I have nothing to gain being rude to her. It's just ammo. I refuse to play that game.

Plus why would I care? I don't want him. That's your prize now hunny, congrats! But he recognizes that he can't stop me in this. I have every right to meet her as he would to meet someone I am dating. When it comes to the kids, he/we can't keep secrets.

I think the real concern about us meeting is this: she will realize I'm not the horrible monster he made me out to be. His plans of assassinating my character to build himself up or to receive pity from her and the constant gaslighting will be revealed. She will see that I am not pining over him, quarreling with him, and that I'm genuinely a good person. Maybe she will see that he might be the real monster...

My STBX was quiet. More quiet than usual. Almost sulking. I don't understand his motivations anymore and what he actually cares about so I left it alone. Not my business to care and comfort anymore, right? That evening, after the children went to bed he sat alone at the dining room table.

It was as if he was waiting for me to address him. I did not. Sulk, that's your issue, not mine. After he received no attention from me he made the big announcement. He claims he told everyone what happened between us, including his father. Then, oddly enough, he started to cry. Full ugly tears.

I thought these were tears of embarrassment and shame. He then proceeded to tell me the conversation he had with his father was the first time his dad has actually acted like a father towards him. While that statement in itself is unsettling, it is also confusing.

I'm guessing his father supported him? I know if this was my son I'd support him but also have some strong words about how he went about this and how he should probably proceed in the future. But it looks like he received 100% support. So while I understand, I don't understand. Something was wrong here..

Last week was my youngest son's birthday. I had asked my STBX if he would like to invite his father over for cake. He text him several times with no response. He learned through their conversation/confession last night that his father was in another state for work. Ok, understandable.

But here is the kicker, he went away, with a new girl he is dating. Why is this strange you ask? He just asked his wife of 30 years for a divorce at the end of January. So this makes me think; is adultery a learned behavior? My FIL abandoned my STBX when he was 9 yrs old, the same age as my eldest son now. Id there a pattern here? Or is all this just a crazy coincidence?

I could not help myself, I messaged my MIL. She confirmed they were divorcing. I asked if there was any infidelity and she claims to her knowledge, no. But I know better. She said that my FIL started to withdraw from her.

He started picking fights for no reason and avoided interacting with her last fall. Then in January he said he wanted a divorce so that 'he could find himself'. A man who is in his 60's, close to retirement, needs to find himself?

Sounds like a cop out to me. But now that I've learned there is another woman (which my MIL does not know) I understand that this bloodline of men are truly selfish and unfit partners.

I know all the comments will tell me to tell my MIL about the infidelity on his part and I plan on doing so. I just need a little more information before I break the news to her.

It happened. FINALLY. He's gone. My basement is so empty and quiet it echos. The day he moved a box truck pulled up to my house and my children ran to the window to watch.

I didn't know how to distract them as I was working. I was able to pull them away from the window with the promise of treats once they were at the table to do school work.

My youngest though would not budge. After 45 minutes of loading, the truck pulled away and my STBX drove off. My youngest came away from the window looking sad. I immediately talked to him and tried to comfort him. After a few moments he asked, "Is the truck coming back?".

I was confused. I told him that we were staying here and no one else was moving. Apparently he wasn't upset that daddy was leaving; he just wanted the truck. I'm not sure how I should feel about this.

I made appointments with a child therapist for both my kids. While they seem fine now I'm not sure what the future holds for their mental state. I'm afraid this will be repressed and issues will arise down the road.

His friends have been reaching out to me. Now that they 'know' what happened I'm getting text and facebook messages asking how I am. I know in reality they are just being nosey. They may care a little but they just want me to spill the tea. Welp, I put the kettle on.

I wasn't surprised to learn that my STBX wasn't completely honest with them. He failed to mention traveling during a pandemic to visit her. I guess that would make him look reckless? Selfish? Idiotic?? The wives of his friends are in shock.

They considered my STBX a friend that could be trusted, a man who had it all together. Basically, they trusted my STBX would be a good influence on their husbands. Boy were they wrong.

Concerning my MIL; I have not told her. This is because I don't have any real information. What I did tell her though was to do some investigating to see if he is having an affair. This would be to her benefit as her state has adultery laws. They are still legally married and living in the same house so to my knowledge, the law applies. But she seems hesitant.

I think she is just afraid to find out the truth and then she has to look at him everyday. This I understand. No person spouse should have to experience that. I know it was gut wrenching for me and perhaps many of you reading can relate as well; I just don't want to be the one to tell her.

Perhaps this is because I'm still upset I had to find out on my own and my STBX was too much of a coward to come clean. Why should a cheating spouse get the thrill of cheating and be relieved of the burden of having to confess?

Before the move, my STBX and I had one last argument. But in this argument a big piece of information was leaked on his behalf. He demanded to know why we failed as partners. I'm not sure why he is asking me why we failed if he is the one that cheated..

I gave him the same reasoning I gave him months ago when we talked about this. He said that answer was bullshit. How can my opinion or insight be bullshit? Let me explain. My STBX and I were great; before kids and responsibilities. But when other people (our children) and responsibilities (work, bills, house upkeep) came into play things changed.

Honestly, he didn't like that our honeymoon phase was over. That's what he loves the most and why his shiny new relationship is so appealing. He didn't like that our money for nights out now went to plumbers, school clothes and the gas bill. Was this another case of being a narcissist and needing all the attention?

Perhaps so. Could I have done better to make him a priority? Probably, but then something else of importance would have been neglected. Perhaps if he would have helped me carry the load and took more responsibility there would be more time for us.

I was the parent that went to every school function, I took the kids food shopping with me on a Saturday so he could have some relax time, I made all the meals, I did the doctor appointments, I called the repair men, I bought the clothing, I cut coupons, I tended to sick children, I gave baths, I made plans to visit his family, etc.

Long story short; the list of responsibilities he had was minimal or close to nonexistent. I just always thought we would (more like I would) sacrifice and work now only to relax and enjoy later. Maybe that was my mistake.

But I showed my love for him daily and always did for him. I did more so he could do less and enjoy his free time and be happy and relaxed. Because when he was stressed, the whole house was tense. But thats a story for another day...

What this conversation did shed light on was his reasoning for talking to her. The reason I suspected; attention. He confessed she gave him attention whenever he wanted it. Everything was about him.

Sure, that's easy to do when your relationship is simply text messages and phone calls. But what happens when it's real and daily? I asked him what happens when he moves there and she starts putting her children first? Or her work becomes a priority? Or they struggle with bills?

You know, real life and all. He had no answers. I asked what happens when this fantasy long distance romance becomes a tough, daily reality. Again, I don't think he thought that far in advance. Can he stay on his best boyfriend behavior? Can everything stay magical when the world stops revolving around him/them? Looks like he will find out soon enough.

I understand I will probably receive criticism for this post. People will say I neglected him so he had no other option but to leave. But let's not over look the fact that he neglected everything in our life so the slack was mine. This story is not new. Some spouses have been doing this for ages. And what is their reward?

The spouse they tried so desperately to give a 'better' life to leaves/cheats. Is this manipulation? Is this me trying so hard to make everything easier for everyone else that I sabotage myself? All I wanted was an equal partner, but that's something that I never got.

So after weeks, no, correction, months, our mediation paperwork is completed. What a relief...or so I thought. While we had talked previously and agreed to everything there was one section we never mentioned which our mediator added. It reads as follows:

"New Partners: Each part agrees that they will introduce a new partner to the children only if he/she is in a committed relationship for at least ___ months. Each parent will inform the other party prior to introducing a new partner to the children."

While that wasn't something that was discussed I think thats an important piece of the puzzle. My STBX does not think that statement needs to be included in our legal agreement. His statement was, "That's a conversation between you and I that a court or judge has no business being in".

While I see his point, my point was this: we are divorcing. Nothing can be left to a handshake promise. We could agree to something verbally and because we both have legal custody we could re-neg on the agreement and deny access to new partners. Having this in black and white protects us both.

He swore he wasn't signing it until that portion was removed. But if the mediator included it, then this must be common practice to do in a divorce. So this prompted me to ask, "When does she plan to come here to visit?"

That must be the motivation, right? She must be planning a trip here soon and he had plans to introduce her to the kids. He claims there are no plans for her to visit our area. Well, if that's the case, whats the harm with waiting 3 months?

But let me be clear, to everyone reading, my motivation in this is the well being of my children. Their father has just left. They need to become accustomed to this new was of life with 2 homes and visiting hours before we complicate things more with a girlfriend or boyfriend.

I've also made appointments for them next month (that was the soonest I could get) with a psychologist to help them process this divorce. Now is not the time to make this more complex. Every parent wants to nurture and protect their children. His AP waited 5 months to introduce him to her children; why is it not ok for us to wait too then?

I had to sit down this past week and really think. What is more important to me, my pride or moving on? I said from the beginning that I want him to be a father, to be involved and active in their lives.

So, we made some changes last night. After a talk, plus an argument, followed by more talking we altered our custody agreement to give him more time with the kids. I know from the past 10 years that he has never been an active father. Perhaps now he feels the need to be? Either way, I'm hopeful this decision will be a good one for the boys.

Now I know many of you may say he is undeserving but I am making this decision and not regretting it because I know it is temporary. He will be moving in a year or so. Of this, I have no doubt. Once he packs up his belongings and he drives across the country our arrangement will change.

I'm a bit upset the children will become used to having him around only to have him leave in a year. That was a big motivator in my reluctance to agree to this custody change.

I have tried to make the best decisions for my boys and I feel like my STBX is just concerned with 'winning'. I also got him to agree to put our new terms and terms for when he leaves (including the altered CS payments) in black and white in our mediation paperwork.

I think the delay by our mediator to supply the paperwork lead to him overthinking and wanting to change the agreement. He agreed in January but now claims he never agreed to it. So I guess our mediator just created these terms which we discussed out of thin air?

Ok, sure buddy. I also think his girlfriend chirped in his ear a bit about what he should do. I'm confident he told her what a wonderful and involved father he has been over the years and I'm sure that prompted her to encourage him for more custody.

Little does she know my STBX doesn't even have car seats in his car because he never takes them anywhere. He doesn't know their doctor's names. He doesn't know their quirks and he has zero patience for them. But I'm sure he has claimed to be 'father of the year'.

Maybe the increase in custody will prompt him to move sooner? He took the boys for an over night last week and when he dropped them off he was grumpy. He claimed all he did was cater to them, didn't have time to eat and barely got any work done all day.

Oh, you mean like me everyday since you left? He's not prepared. But it's ok, I'm done sheltering him. These are your kids and now you can see what it takes to care for them and balance everyday life. Maybe now he will see why I never had the time or energy to cater to him.

Last week was our final, final mediation meeting. My STBX claims that the mediation we had in January was not the final. I was happy that our mediator confirmed in the meeting that January's meeting was the final and his changes are an addition. Either way, it's done.

Mediation completed. Now starts the actual divorce process. I told him that I'd like to start this ASAP and his response was, "I know you want to rush through this but this takes time and can't be done when you want it to be done." So hold on, let me get this straight.

You were the one who cheated for months and has a girlfriend, but me wanting to complete our divorce paperwork makes me the one that is rushing to end the marriage? No, sir. You have rushed to end it. Actually, you ended it.

Now we are just completing the paperwork but the marriage was dissolved in September when you started sending her flowers. Or perhaps in October when you started flying to her state during a pandemic to have se%. So pardon me if I'd like to cut the cord legally. You have already severed it emotionally.

Even though we aren't legally divorced he has been taking the kids 3-4 nights a week on a rotating schedule. Truth be told, I'm happy he is stepping up but my children don't like it. When I tell them they are going to daddy's they cry.

Because my ex lives in an apartment building and my children have grown up in a single family home; my oldest son call's his apartment a hotel, not a house. When they are there they miss me and I feel terrible. On one of their first evenings there my youngest called me from his ipad 4 times.

I wanted to give them space to be with their dad but after the 5th phone call, I answered. My STBX was on the computer working (he showed me on the video call) and my youngest was left in his room to play.

He was bored and seeking attention. I told him to play with daddy when he was done with his call and I would see them soon. After we hung up I got an angry text from my ex telling me we need to practice boundaries when we have the children and respect each other's time with them.

The children were now asking him when they come home. He said (to me) this is their home as well and they should know that. A few things about this: 1. If you were paying attention to the kids they would not call me.

I understand you are working but I work from home as well and they are NEVER calling you while I am here. I have to tell the kids to call you and even then they don't want to. 2. Boundaries?

You have been coming to the house every night on my days to say good night to them. So you can come to my home and see them for 45 minutes every night but I can't answer my son's 5th phone call to me? Here's some boundaries, you can't come here anymore.

He is very regretful he brought up this argument because it hurts him more than me. I have no problems playing fair, but you have to play as well. 3. If you want YOUR kids to feel like your house is their home as well, then you need to tell THEM not ME. Ok, I get it, but they don't. So you need to have that conversation with them, not me. Ive just resolved myself to the fact that I will always be the bad guy.

I've always been flexible. Well, physically not so much with age, but flexible in situations has never been a problem. My STBX fought me on a 50/50 custody agreement. One in which I agreed to. Our original agreement was for a 65/35 split which gave him every other weekend plus a few dinner time visits in between.

For someone who has never been an active father this should have been enough. Apparently now he thinks he's super dad and wishes to take the lead. This would have been helpful years ago, but better late than never. He contacts me the other day telling me he will be picking up the kids for 2 overnights this week.

Mind you, he is supposed to have the kids 2 days on one week and then 5 days the next week. I tell him that he can have the kids over the weekend as well. This is when he tells me he has several work trips and personal trip (to see his girlfriend) coming up so he needs me to be flexible with the visits.

Flexible? I thought you were the "I need to see my kids more" dad now. The dad who needed more time (and less time & child support for me) with his children. Where did that guy go? The month of April he has had the kids for 8 nights total. TOTAL. And when I mention this isn't 50/50 I'm the bad guy and need to be understanding to his work and personal life.

Excuse me, I have work and a personal life too. well, not really a personal life but I hope too soon! Why do I have to be flexible to you and you aren't to me?

I told him I offered him the 65/35 split that would allow him more free time for work/pleasure and he didn't want it. He said I was steamrolling him into taking that agreement and he wasn't happy with the time he'd have with the kids.

Touched that he wanted more time with the kids, I agreed to this and now that it's in black and white I have to have the kids more and receive less child support because you can't keep up with the deal YOU wanted? I think in all honesty it wasn't about seeing his kids; it was about not giving me what I asked for.

He says I rely too much on our agreement and that it's just a guideline; we don't need to live and die by it. Ummmm, but I think we do. It's a legal document about our children and our assets. So if we don't live and die by it will you stop paying child support? Or maybe decide that you want things that are mine?

It's just a piece of paper, right? For a man who lead a double life, had an affair, has a girlfriend, and wanted out of this house; he sure doesn't seem to want to face the reality of what a divorce actually is.

So if he doesn't take the kids for his 50/50 visits what are my options? Start this process again with another agreement? Take him to court? I think perhaps my best option is to NOT be flexible and when they numbers don't add up we go back to court. I don't see any other option..

This past weekend was Mother's Day. It was a strange day this year but still oddly more enjoyable than previous years. My STBX has been taking the kids on the schedule I created and so far, no issues. He has yet to pay me any child support but I will give him till the 15th till I make a stink about that.

The boys were with him over the weekend but he returned them on Sunday so I could spend the day with them. I asked him while he was here if he called his grandmother yet. His grandmother is the only family (besides his equally unfaithful father) that he speaks to.

He told me he spoke to her and that he told her that we have separated. I was shocked. This was a big one. I knew it would be hard to tell her and the news would give her a heart attack.

He said she was upset and shared some of their conversation with me. He told me he did not tell her why we split, only that we had. While not the whole truth, I was happy to see that he took this tough step.

Fast forward a few hours later. His mother calls me. Her and I have a fairly good relationship but my STBX is holding a grudge over things from the past and refuses to speak to her. I had asked if she heard the news from her mother. She was confused. Well, it turns out it was all a lie.

He never told his grandmother. The conversation he said he had was never actually had. I speak to his sister as well and find out after 13 years together, that this 'run away with a girl who'll give me more attention' is his MO.

She told me that before me he lied to his girlfriend of 4 years that he was going to spend time with his dad and it turns out he went away for the weekend with another girl. Now ain't that some shit...

My lawyer will be serving him the divorce papers next week. When I told him for the 2nd time that I was hiring a lawyer to do that papers and did not want us to do them ourselves he got angry. He accused me of wanting to try something shady. No, sir. You have been shady enough for the both of us.

When I reminded him that I've already brought this up to him and that I have been getting quotes from lawyers he accused me of 'not being transparent'. You're kidding right? He will always be the victim, never wrong and always right.

My STBX had the children this past Friday-Saturday and then again Monday-Wednesday. I went to pick them up today after work and that's went it happened; the breakdown. My STBX started to cry. He lost it. Apparently, for the past 3 days all our children did was ask to go home.

They cried and constantly asked 'how long'. He tried to tell them that this was their home as well but they wouldn't hear of it. Now part of me feels badly. It must be terrible to have your children reject you. But on the flip side, he's never been the parent he is now.

He takes them places, plays with them, reads to them, bathes them, etc. I don't think he understands that you can't just flip a switch with these kids and they will gravitate towards you. I know he is trying, and I appreciate that, but it's too little too late.

I have tried to be supportive and understand them having a father is important; but I honestly don't think they want him. Again, they are both under 10 and young, they don't fully understand.

My oldest asked me on the ride home if they could never go back. When I explained that we are both parents, love them, and want to spend equal time with them, both children protested.

I think my STBX realizes this is too little, too late. He is regretful. I don't know how to make this situation easier for everyone; but honestly, it's not my problem to solve. I asked him to take a 35/65 split but he rejected it saying it wasn't enough time with the children.

My suggestion of that split wasn't about me wanting more; it was about what I thought our children could handle. He just wanted to 'win' and get me to convert to a 50/50 split. Welp, you won! Here it is! How's that working out for you? Maybe if you would have thought about what was best for them and not 'defeating' me maybe this would have ended differently.

After his breakdown I didn't contact him for awhile. I knew he needed time to cool off and if I talked to him for any reason I was afraid he would get angry with me or even worse, confide in me. I wanted neither. So when I finally did need to speak to him he told me, "we need to figure out what we are going to do this summer". What are we doing?

We are doing nothing. I was confused. He told me it's going to be impossible for him to handle the kids during the summer while he is working. He said he was 'barely holding on by a thread' as it is now.

This isn't a problem we faced in the past, as I'm a teacher and off all summer so I handle the kids 100% during summer months. I don't think he took the summer into consideration when he demanded 50/50 physical custody. So his suggestion was to enroll the children in a camp when he has them. A camp?

So you want to enroll our children in a camp from 8-6 on the days you have them? How is that spending time with them? So, my suggestion was let's do the 35/65 split for July and August and he can have the kids weekends and see them in the evening whenever he wants.

He was FURIOUS. "It's always about custody with you', he said. Wait, wait, wait. This isn't about custody. You just said you can't handle them. I'm offering to give up the first real summer vacation I've ever had to keep them to help YOU and I'm the bad guy here??? Make this make sense.

He claims the kids need to socialize. In the past 9 years he has NEVER cared if the children socialized, but now it's a big deal? This was the man who rolled his eyes and complained about having to go to a kids birthday party for 3 hours...

So I left it alone. Let him sit on the thought for a bit. A few days later to be proactive I sent him information about summer camps....along with price lists. It would cost between $250-350 a week for camp. The camps I found are only for 5 weeks leaving most of August without childcare for him. How does this help? How is this spending time with the kids?

Putting our children in an expensive weekly camp (during covid) just so you can give them dinner, bath and put them to bed doesn't help them or your relationship with them. My family owns a house by the beach. I will be down there most of the summer with kids.

When I'm home, we have friends we can visit and at least we have a yard at our house for the children to play in. The children will be happy, socialize with family and friends and most importantly, be safer with me than in a camp.

Lastly, I will add that he has yet to pay me child support for April and May. He moved out in March, took the kids for 8 overnights in April (it should have been 15) and has yet to give me a dime for April and May.

But he can afford almost $1300 in camp fees just to have his 'custody'? Even more proof that his actions are not about what's best for the kids, it's just a competition with me. Again, make this make sense...

I'm officially in the court system, with a docket number and everything! It on its way to becoming official and I em elated. My STBX does not seem that excited. This past weekend he flew out to her state and attended a family wedding as her guest.

I'm happy they are taking these steps as a couple because if they are happy he will move and the farther away he is the better!

When he returned he was now excited about the divorce. Asking me when the lawyer would send him paperwork to sign and what the timeline was moving forward. He was on cloud 9 after his vacation and wished to hurry the process up.

The day he was having his share of paperwork notarized was also the day I was going to pick up the children from him. When I got there he was short with me; I could tell he was on the verge of a panic attack. He hurried us away and then text me later explaining he in fact was in the beginning stages of a panic attack. But why?

He told me he was feeling overwhelmed. Between the kids, work, managing a household and maintaining a social life he felt burnt out. WOW! This sounds oddly familiar. This was my story for the past 10 years. The reason I didn't go on date nights as often as he liked was for this exact reason. Part of me felt bad because I know what that feeling is like.

But another part of me relished the thought of his struggling and coming to the realization that that was my life and reason for his cheating. So, how should I react?

After I took a second to think I blurted, "Wow that sucks. I'm taking the kids to the beach this weekend. See you Monday morning when you pick them up!" I decided to give him the support he gave me for 10 years.

If anyone knows what movie this posts title is from then you know, "You gotta do what your heart tells you to do."

Sunday it's happening. The day I've been waiting for and he has been dreading. I'm going to meet the girlfriend. I'm honestly excited. He on the other hand is in a panic. And I understand why, I exploded on that woman on the phone and said some terrible things.

And I also understand it's going to be hard for him to hide his lies about me being insane when we are face to face. He text me a few days ago and told me that he would be picking the boys up on Father's Day to head down the shore with them and she would be accompanying them.

When they come to pick up the boys we can have a chat. I'm fine with that. I'm actually relieved he wasn't planning on taking the boys to the shore alone; I don't think he can handle them both on the boardwalk or in arcades.

He is very worried that I will cause a scene when I meet her. It's actually the exact opposite. I plan on being myself, very friendly and welcoming. I need her to see I'm not that emotional woman that I was on the phone and in my letter.

I mentioned to him via text that I would not jeopardize the good relationship he and I have had recently with each other and co parenting by being mean to her. His exact words, "I don't need you to speak about what you and I have." But why? Why wouldn't the fact that we are getting along and coparenting be something she shouldn't know? And then I remembered....he lies.

He must be telling her I'm impossible. That I'm a terrible human being. That I'm difficult and unreasonable. How can he make this lie hold water if I'm polite and friendly to her and him?

The boys have each made something for him and I got a small gift from the boys to give him. We will present him with those things in front of her. I feel like if I saw someone who was supposed to be 'cruel and insane' do that to their 'enemy' I'd have questions as well.

Also, I plan on packing snacks for the boys and him for the trip; this is something I'd for whether she was there or not. Are those the acts of a 'crazy and hateful' person? I think not.

Lastly, and some of you may not agree with this, I'm going to apologize for how I spoke to her. I know she was wrong for what she did and if she ever wants to apologize I'd listen.

But, I'm not proud of how I spoke to her on the phone; that was the worst side of me. I think she understands my actions but my apology is not to get on her good side.

I want to be the bigger person. I don't plan on ever being friends with this woman but she will be left alone with my children at some point so I'm doing this for them. Also, my selfish motive, if she is happy and feels comfortable with my STBX she will want him to move out of state with her.

I want this. So I won't do anything to jeopardize this move. I will update you all on Sunday evening with a play by play of our meet.

Since my last post my head has been swimming. I spent so many months envisioning this moment and now it is here and all the scenarios I've run in my head seem like cheesy movie scenes.

None of it is plausible. I finally decided yesterday to not go into this meet up trying to prove who I am to someone, but more so just be myself and stop worry about the impression that I leave on her.

She has an opinion of me that is clouded by his lies so there is no sense trying to change her mind. So I asked myself, 'who am I?'. And then I remembered that before this whole fiasco I was the person who killed with kindness. While that kindness was manipulated by my STBX, I was the one who was in control now.

So I did what I thought was right. My children made Father's Day cards for him and then I had them make cards for her. I had them introduce themselves and list one things they'd like to do with her. They drew pictures and colored and all was right in the world. Kill them with kindness...

I text him last night asking what time was pick up. He was at dinner and said he would text me back when they were done. I woke up at 6:30 with no text from him. I text him at 6:30, 7:30, 8 and finally received word back from him just before 9. Be there in a hour.

Ok, no that that is settled, what do I wear? I opted for the true to myself outfit; leggings, flip flops and a cute off the shoulder shirt. Very me. Hair: curly. Makeup: light but with a generous amount of mascara.

It was now 9:40 so we sat and waited. The boys grew antsy. At 10:30 I get a text that his stomach is upset so they ran a little late. Sounds like a case of nerves to me. Then at just before 11 they arrive. I assemble the boys and the gifts and we come outside.

There she is. Right there. Standing on my steps. For a hot second I raged inside. I wanted to say something smart like, 'you left me for this?'. I looked over at him and the look of panic and tension on his face told me that by doing that I'd be the monster he has fictitiously talked about.

So I went back to my motto of kindness, extended my hand, smiled warmly, and introduced myself. She. Was. SHOCKED. Where is this lunatic I've heard so much of? Why isn't she trying to claw out my eyes?? I can only imagine what was running through her head.

The boys presented their gifts to dad and then gave her the cards. Shock took her over again. Cards that aren't death threats? How?! Why?!?! At this point her mood went from fear to pure embarrassment. I must say it was more delicious to watch that shift than it was to potentially pull her hair out.

We hustled the boys into the car and as my STBX walked to the other side of the car to get them in I turned to her. Shock and fear had returned to her face. She had difficulty making eye contact with me. I could hear my STBX heart beating from 10 feet away. I looked at her and said..

"________ I just want to apologize for how I first spoke to you. I was an emotional wreck but I said some terrible things and that was very unlike me. I know my actions were justified but reflected back on that day I'm unhappy with how I acted towards you."

Hello shock, have you met our dear friend guilt? A wave of guilt took over her as she bumbled through her own half assed apology. She couldn't say the word 'affair', instead she said 'what happened'. Own it girl, just own it.

But she did end her nonsensical word vomit wishing to have a conversation with me about what transpired (I used the word transpired, most of her words were less than 2 syllables). My STBX who had started to look relieved now tensed at the idea of her and I having a chat. I have already promised myself I won't speak badly of him to her. Maybe I'll just give her a link to this thread instead. Haha.

Now I look forward to her spending 48 hours with him and our kids. Now she can see the short temper and lack of patience he has. It is going to be VERY hard for him to keep up his father of the year act. I'm sure my children will give me a play by play of how their visit went.

I will update you all on Wednesday when the children have returned. Thank you all again for supporting me on this journey. Today was a big day but I'm proud of my growth. Part of that growth is from the support I've received from you all. So many, many thanks.

On Sunday evening I sat home alone, glass of white wine in hand, and replayed the morning over in my head. As I sipped, I let the interaction play out in my mind and tried to analyze the scenario. My interpretation was that she was stunned, he was floored, my kids were indifferent, and I was victorious.

I was pleased with my behavior and felt that there wasn't much more that could be done. She would leave Monday evening and it would be some time till her and I spoke again. Then, almost as if prompted by the Gods themselves, my phone pinged. Random number with a strange area code.

My heart dropped. I knew it was her. I stared at my phone without opening it for a good minute. I knew that opening that text was opening a door I wasn't sure I wanted opened. Perhaps she would just be apologizing.

Or maybe thanking me for earlier. Were the kids ok? Or perhaps she would have questions or concerns about him and want an ally. I knew after opening that text, no matter what it said, things would never be the same.

For a split second I regretted my decision to be kind to her. I took away some of her worry and fear and yet none of my emotions have changed. But then I remembered; I'm not in the wrong here. I don't need anyone to tell me it's ok because I was not to blame.

We spoke a bit more and by the end of the conversation I felt sorry for her. She has no idea what she is getting into with him. She thinks he is her knight in shining armor but little does she know she will have to polish and maintain that armor for him.

She was just like me many years ago, blinded by shiny armor that was really just tin foil. Lies and playing pretend was all he really gave me and I fear this will be her outcome too.

The other side of that coin is that she deserves this. You had an affair, she read in my letter that this wasn't the first time I suspected he was unfaithful, yet she thinks it will be different with her? Come on, sis. You're smarter than this, you gotta do better girl.

After I picked up the boys they gave me rave reviews about her and their father. It seems they were rightfully spoiled while she was there and daddy didn't yell or lose patience once. Amazing, huh? My youngest asked me if this was his new sister. I had to explain the concept of separation, divorce and parents dating.

Apparently even with his girlfriend in the room my STBX avoided an actual conversation with our kids. Sigh. Some things never change. So while they won knockoff Marvel prizes at the arcade with her and their dad, it seems she has won the biggest knockoff prize of them all.

For those of you that love the dirt and gossip about my STBX, I'm sorry. This is not a post about him. This is a post about me. A little while back I sat in my home in silence. The children were gone and I was in a partial meditation/trance thinking about what I want my future to look like.

I'm 38, I have 2 children, a job, friends, grey hair peeking from my temples, a tight family, future schooling for my 3rd degree, a mortgage, cellulite and a kind (but damaged) heart. Where do I go from here? And more importantly, who would want to go with me?

Dating was easy in my 20's. My skin was tight, I could be spontaneous, everything I owned fit perfectly and going on an 11pm date for drinks was totally doable. I am not that girl anymore. So, how does a woman like me meet a man that will like ME? I'm lost. Are there bars? Nightclubs? Pottery painting?

I've seen speed dating on TV, does that really exist or is that reserved only for sitcoms? Reluctantly I googled 'how to date in your 30's'. Some of you have probably beaten me to the punchline, but the answer was right in front of me. Online dating. I cringed.

Having no real reason not to, I created an online dating profile. I filled in all the blanks, set my preferences, uploaded a few pictures where the outfit fits right and the lighting is superb and I publish the page. I walk away from my phone full of nervous energy and grab a snack; chocolate will help.

After I eat out of pure anxiety I return to my phone. I have a message from the app. I'm afraid. I ignore it out of fear and strangely, guilt. Fear that he may be a serial killer and guilt because while my STBX has moved on, I feel guilty that I am still legally married and on a dating site. I do the only logical thing next; I go to bed.

I lay in bed and try to remember what a first date is like. The awkward hello ( it a handshake, hug, kiss on the cheek, full open mouth sloppy kiss...), the cumbersome chit chat (...this weather is crazy, read any good books lately, wow how about them Mets...) and of course the uncomfortable goodbye.

Ugh, I don't know how to do this or even if I can. Do you talk about your ex? Or do you avoid it like the plague? Do you be no nonsense and get right to the good and bad of yourself to not waste time? Because honestly, who has time to casually date at this age? I tell myself to go to sleep. Eventually, I listen.

I awake to sunlight, the hum of the AC and a pinging phone. I have a text from my mother and14 messages all from the dating site. This must be a mistake. I must have put the wrong age or been too lenient with my preferences. I scroll through message after message and see that these men all share the same thing.

They are interested in learning more about me. I sift through profiles like they are resumes for a job and land on 3 potential 'candidates'. All around my age and location, all divorced, all wishing to converse with me. My nerves have no transitioned to excitement but peppered with a bit of anxiety.

This is it, I'm doing it, officially jumping into the deep dark dating pool. After a few days of chatting with all 3 I solidified my suitor. Soon I will be engaging in my first, 2nd date. Wish me luck and will update soon.

Readers had some thoughts on OP's saga:

ventiy writes:

To me this reads as someone whose severely alone and in pain and needs somewhere to vent. I do this too. The “novella” type writing when talking about things that are hurting. It detaches me from the situation and I view things that have hurt as more of a story to look back on that helped form me.

When you lay everything out like this, it’s easier to figure out what to do next. I find it odd we’re getting to read someone’s journal because they’re so alone they don’t have anyone to turn to except Reddit and you’re all judging her for the way she copes. Let people cope how they want??

cisco7 writes:

I really wish I could hear the guys perspective on this one. Don’t get me wrong, if you’re unhappy with a marriage then you file for a divorce instead of having an affair. What he did was shitty.

With that being said, you must really want nothing to do with your wife if you decide “f it she can get the house, the car, the shirt off my back if it means I can leave that much sooner”.

Just saying you don’t decide you’re willing to leave behind everything you’ve worked for in life unless you really want nothing to do with the person that is attached to it all. This sounds really fd but based off the essay she wrote, I get the feeling that she is pretty annoying.

What do YOU make of this saga? But wait...THERE'S MORE. Take a look at Parts 3 & 4 of OP's story.

Sources: Reddit
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