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'Just found out my wife had an affair with a female co-worker, should I forgive her?' UPDATED

'Just found out my wife had an affair with a female co-worker, should I forgive her?' UPDATED


"My (35M) wife (34F) just told me that she had a brief affair 4 years ago."

Here's the original post:

My wife Kara and I've been married for almost 8 years. A couple of years into our marriage, we decided we wanted kids and started trying for. After not conceiving for over a year, we had ourselves checked out and I found out that I am sterile. This came as a massive blow because we've always wanted children. It was a very dark time for me. I was very miserable and threw myself at my work.

I drank a lot and wasn't at home very much. I wasn't a good husband or partner to Kara. This went on for around six months. Kara tried to help for months but after sometime, she stopped. I eventually managed to get out of that slump. Kara and I spent a lot of time working on our relationship after that and I thought we came out stronger. We had a lot of discussions and decided to adopt children.

We adopted 2 kids .I thought we had a good marriage. Recently, one of Kara's close friends died in an accident. Kara has been acting very strangely since then, but I chalked it up to grief and have tried to help her. Yesterday, we sent our kids to my parents for the weekend. Kara told me about her affair after we had dinner.

This is what she told me. When I was in my miserable phase, she was miserable too. She was devastated that we couldn't have children and started talking to a female coworker about it because I wasn't available. As I started withdrawing, Kara started relying on her more and more. A few weeks in, Kara started spending more time with her. One weekend they got drunk and had sex.

This went on for over two months until Kara decided to break it off. Kara had proof that the affair was only under 3 months. She saved all the messages from when it started and when she ended it. Kara showed them to me and her coworker begged her to leave me in those messages. Kara stopped contact with that coworker and even left that job at that time to break it off completely.

Kara told me that she rethought her life when her close friend died and didn't want to hide it from me anymore. I'm feeling devastated right now. She lied to me for 4 years. We adopted kids. I haven't been able to function all day. I told her that I needed to think and that I didn't want to talk to her. I've been in the guest bedroom all day and I can't think straight.

What should I do now? How should I proceed? My head I messed up and I am not able to think properly. Do I need to anything immediately?

What do you think? This is what top commenters had to say:

[deleted] said:

You think you'll be able to trust her again? If not, it's better not to insist on staying together.

SummerWedding23 said:

I would go with both individual and couples therapy. You have every right to feel hurt, sad, confused, and angry. Whatever feelings you have are valid and even though the affair was years ago for her, it’s brand new to you and you can take as long as you need to process and decide. I’d wait to make any decisions.

Give yourself at least 2 months and during that time, you get to set the tone of the relationship for you and Kara meaning if you want to sleep in the same bed or not, if you want to have sex or not, if you need space or not. During this two months she needs to accept you’re processing. And your feelings on many things will change hour by hour at times as your reminded of her infidelity.

I would however be careful to not say or do something you’d regret like calling names - don’t let a situation make you a worse person than you are. You keep your moral high ground by remaining who you are. (If you’re religious try Roman’s 12:9-21 which totally helped me over the years to stay true to who I was no matter what pain I found myself in)

My personal opinion is that infidelity isn’t always cut and dry, nor does it always have to mean divorce or the end of the relationship. It can but it doesn’t have to even though society tends to make us feel differently.

Your situation is the exact reason I believe that - because while there is zero excuse for infidelity, there are times when extenuating circumstances, heartfelt remorse, and renewed commitment can help a couple move forward.

Story time: when I was 3 my sister died. My parents grieved hard. During this time my dad did what you did and my mom did what your wife did. Eventually they worked through it. They’re celebrating 46 years this year. It wasn’t easy but it’s possible. Don’t rush to decision and work with a therapist who is paid not to judge you :) good luck.

isjim said:

You people say that you understand why Kara felt the need to get close to her female coworker, but OP's behaviour doesn't rationalize the affair. If you're a stand-up person, you break a toxic relationship off or take a break, if you feel like there might be a future. You don't cheat.

And fiesty64 said:

Why did she wait 4 years to tell you? If it's over, why did she keep the texts? Since her affair was with another woman, is she wanting a reason to split up so she can "come out of the closet"? Is she wanting to have another affair but maybe feels guilty since the two of you have worked to improve your marriage?

From what you wrote, it sounds like she justified her affair because the two of you were in a slump. Sounds like she has some explaining to do. If you don't think you can trust her anymore, then that's another conversation y'all should have.

A week after his original post, he shared this update:

Firstly, I want to thank all the commenters who gave advice on my original post. I got some DMs about my Kara sleeping with a woman. Both Kara and I are bisexual. She's had girlfriends and I've had boyfriends before we got married. Her interest in women is not news to me. After my post, we told my parents we were having some problems and asked them to keep the kids for the week.

I was still angry at Kara. I told her I wasn't ready to talk about the affair and stuff. Before this happened, Kara and I used to do a lot of stuff together. We cooked together, exercised together and played video games together. These were usually the highlights of my day and we started doing those again.

As the week progressed, it dawned on me how much I'd miss her and our companionship if we split. She was best friend and the person I relied on the most. After a few days, we finally sat down to talk. I asked her why she kept the messages and Kara told me that she did it because she wanted to have proof that the affair was brief and that she ended it.

Kara told me that she realised that life was short and could end at any time when her friend died, and she didn't want to die with regret and guilt, so she told me. I didn't want to lose our partnership that I treasured without alteast giving it a chance, so we're going to see a marriage counsellor and I'm going to individual therapy. Kara is a great partner, an extremely fun person to be around and my driving force.

I still haven't forgiven her for hiding the affair from me for four years and I told her that. I'm more pissed off at her for hiding it from me and than the actual affair. I made it clear to her that I might not be able to forgive her and that we might split in the end, but that I was willing to try because I love her and our partnership.

Sources: Reddit
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