[Update2] [33 M] with [32F] wife of 4 years, hit rock bottom (self.relationships)

79 ups - 20 downs = 59 votes

Thread 1

Thread 2

My wife and I are both PhD students. Normally she was the one leaving on research trips, while I stayed at home. I ended getting a (insert first responder job) to help pay the bills for the bigger apartment she absolutely needed when we got married a few years ago - and to help pay for my preliminary research. She got her trips funded through professors. My job was nice, but dangerous. There was a gym and I could work out on the clock, always keeping in shape for the combination of hard work and academic pressures.

The marriage had issues. There was very little action in the bedroom, and she chalked up to having a low libido. I kept fit, worked hard, and handled things. I got attention from other women, but turned it down. I tried really hard to do things to get things moving in the bedroom, but nothing worked. I once went 7 months without sex from her. After complaining about this, she ended up giving me sporadic grudging duty sex just to keep me from losing my mind.

Well, finally I came through and succeeded and got the big grant. I was going to go abroad in one stretch. She had been abroad for a similar amount of time, but broken up in chunks. Recognizing the unfairness in this, I arranged for her to visit me halfway on my dime. We had a good time, then she went home.

A few months after going home, and while I was still in my research location, she flew abroad and went to her research location. She "felt alive there," and her libido opened up. Soon after this, she met "D." Very soon after they met, the first kiss happened. She withdrew, but they were making out within a few more days. This led to making out in the bedroom, which of course goes to where the panties slip to the side. Sometimes this led to a finish, sometimes it didnt.

She became very attached to him, and to the dopamine high she was on. She cried when she left and confided in one of her friends on how much she cared about him. She wasnt sure whether our marriage or this relationship with him was going to go on for about 2-3 weeks after she went home. Their relationship fizzled, and she decided to try to make it work with me. She was not going to tell me about the affair.

The problem is, I suspected something was drastically wrong. You can see in the previous posts some of the erratic demands on "having to move right now," and refusing to compromise with me. She was also, in hindsight, making her lover more of a positive, and, as a result, I had to have more negative attributes. She gaslighted me when I asked about him, considering she peppered her page with pictures of him, some in some loving poses. I was no where. She also found me a nuisance when I would call. My work was dangerous, and I really wanted to hear her voice. I had a suspicion something was wrong, but I had no idea.

So, it was time for me to go home. Our homecoming was awkward and strained. She was just not really into it. Further complicating things, the next day we discovered we had to move because the landlord was losing the house and not able to renew our month to month lease. I was super busy before abroad with research, and instead of coming home and relaxing, I became super busy again. I had no time to explore my conflicted suspicions.

That was when I discovered a pus discharge from my firehose. They dont test for all bacterial strains that cause this, but the medication for chlamydia and gonorrhea cleared it up. My tests for 4 bacterial STDs came back negative. Now I wasnt sure what I had. I was in a disturbing grey area, and I was about to leave the country again for a few months to finish my work. It could have been another bacterial STD, or not. This is when I discovered she had been misleading me on her student loans. I found it was, in fact, $170,000 dollars.

During the move, I first got a lawyer to draft up a post nup agreement to leave her debt to her. When I wanted to talk to her about her financial plan for paying the loans, I was put off by her statements that the loans were hers and she was just going to take care of them. She didnt want to hear how this was going to impact the marriage.

When I left, I gained some clarity to process the whirlwind of information. I started to put everything together. There really was no other possible causes for my penis discharge. The chlamydia and gonorrhea cleared it up in normal time. All the pus and burning urination went in a normal time for a bacterial STD. This was where one of her friends that I had been chatting with, confirmed the affair and came out because of safety reasons for all parties.

I got a ticket home for the very next morning and confronted my spouse with her friend, in person. This put my spouse of guard. She tried to deny it as just making out, but I wasnt having the gaslighting anymore. I had proof and backup proof. This wasnt an inquiry, this was an intervention. She asked if we were getting a divorce, and I said I cant come back from this. She collapsed, and I left. The next few days I got my things in a storage unit and went back overseas. We also got tested for everything, an came up negative.

Now, she is desperately doing all the things I've been asking her to do: Share some cooking responsibilities, go to counseling, work on the dead bedroom, stop keeping secrets, work on finances, and discover why she cheated. I've postponed filing for divorce to let all ofthis process, so I'm not making decisions in shock. I'm not going to twist the knife on her, and let her keep her reputation that she values, but I dont think I can come back.

I just keep thinking of the romance that I had waited and worked for for so long, and she gave it to another man. When I was at risk from a dangerous project, the thought of coming home kept me going. Now I learn she was in a dopamine high of passion and sex with another man during this time. I'm just getting severely mindfucked by hearing all the things I wanted to hear. Normally, I'm 100% into the walkout, im just finding myself stammering here.

This is all so fucking overwhelming, that I cant process it all. Yes, I'm going to counseling myself to deal with this, no matter what I choose.


tl;dr: This is too complicated for a summary, but for starters, I posted two threads above, and I eventually found out my wife had sex with another man. This is leading to a huge mindscrew for me.

54 comments submitted at 20:09:54 on Nov 23, 2013 by throwaway_yy

  • [-]
  • dinosaur_train
  • 82 Points
  • 20:32:08, 23 November

Guy, at some point you have to tally all of this shit up and understand that staying means losing all of your integrity. Staying will drain you of your self worth. In the back of your mind you'll always know that you were a doormat who took abuse and didn't leave and demand better for yourself. Fuck. That.

While you have a tiny pinch of integrity left, walk out that fucking door. Nothing good happens when you tether your entire future to a person who is a LIAR, ready to make you feel crazy, and capable of such heinous betrayals. NOTHING GOOD, OP... the equation of having a happy life doesn't include a crazy bitch factor.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 21 Points
  • 20:36:10, 23 November

I'm going through a beating. I need to hear about how my balls fell off at some point. Thanks I needed to hear that.

  • [-]
  • brandnewish
  • 25 Points
  • 23:14:05, 23 November

Pick them up off the ground. And file for divorce. Move on brother.

  • [-]
  • craaackle
  • 12 Points
  • 00:47:25, 24 November

Balls grow back, if you let them (not actual medical advice)

  • [-]
  • TittyTotty
  • 7 Points
  • 02:38:00, 24 November

If you stay, she will know that she can put you through this and worse. And she will again. Because she likes to. I'm going through a similar situation. I threatened to leave if he ever cheated again. He cheated, I stayed, then threatened to leave again. Rinse and repeat until you wake up and it's been three years and you're a shell of who you used to be. Take it from me. It only gets worse from this point.

  • [-]
  • Malium
  • 2 Points
  • 15:07:36, 24 November

Yeah, you're going through a beating. But you're doing it. Eyes open, facing forward. Something to be said for that.

You've got a PhD in front of you, a life in front of you.

Life is far too short to spend it married to someone that isn't into you. If she's passionate about the other guy, it isn't low libido.

  • [-]
  • YellowOrbitz
  • 33 Points
  • 20:54:04, 23 November

Divorce. She gave up on you when you tried and instead found a passion for another man. You were in a high risk situation. That's the most selfish thing I've ever heard of. You deserve better than this. There are women out there who wouldn't do this. You don't need to settle for this. If she really wanted the relationship to survive she would have changed her behavior before she started sleeping with another guy, not after.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 22 Points
  • 21:03:33, 23 November

I'm not sure why shes even trying to fix it.

Actually a whole lot of gaslighting has left me really confused.

At anyrate, I already got a lawyer and an appointment when I get back. I'm just trying to make sense of it all and get over the shock.

>You deserve better than this. There are women out there who wouldn't do this.

Imagine the ego blow, where you are trying to get her to look at sex toys, games, role playing, or how i was trying with cooking, dates, relaxing trips, etc to get things in the bedroom.... only to find her giving that passion to another man with unprotected sex.

I'm devastated

  • [-]
  • YellowOrbitz
  • 14 Points
  • 21:16:54, 23 November

I know, I don't even know how you're keeping yourself together. If I was in your situation I would just lose my shit.

You can't rationalize her behavior. Honestly I feel like finding out the "real" reason it happened would just hurt more. I know you're curious and feel like you have to know and make sense of it, but I don't think it would do you any good or bring you any closure. I really hope everything works out and you move on from this relationship.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 5 Points
  • 21:20:04, 23 November

Imagine this was during and after after a very stressful and dangerous research project.

Just before that, I was doing other stressful emergency work, and _____ (redacted).

Its been non-stop for a long time, and I need to take a breath and make a little sense of this all before I go file.

I really needed some support at home, not this.

  • [-]
  • YellowOrbitz
  • 7 Points
  • 21:22:47, 23 November

Yeah, that's what makes it so much worse for me. She was sleeping around when you needed her most. I just... want to smack her. You could go to couple's counseling. Not to reconcile but to have the divorce go over smoothly. That might help you make sense of things.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 2 Points
  • 21:26:08, 23 November

i have never considered this, and I wouldnt mind you going into more detail why you suggested it. I am curious and interested in this as an option.

  • [-]
  • YellowOrbitz
  • 5 Points
  • 21:30:20, 23 November

Well, my parents went to counseling when they were getting divorced to help things go more smoothly. I think it would have been affective but my dad didn't believe in therapy (well, he doesn't still).

There's just a lot of raw emotions and having a professional, unbiased 3rd party can be really helpful. It would help you guys communicate and the therapist would probably have a lot of insight into what was going on after hearing both sides of the story.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 2 Points
  • 21:31:51, 23 November

interesting. how did it work?

  • [-]
  • YellowOrbitz
  • 1 Points
  • 21:37:45, 23 November

Well, not well for my parents because my dad gave up. My mom was telling me about her friend through and apparently it did work pretty well. I guess her friend is still friend's with her ex, although I don't know if you're looking for that.

My mom just told me about her friend because I was confused as to who in the world would go to therapy with their SO if they were breaking up.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 1 Points
  • 21:50:50, 23 November

> mom just told me about her friend because I was confused as to who in the world would go to therapy with their SO if they were breaking up.

its unusual, and im trying to consider whether that would even be helpful here

  • [-]
  • panic_bread
  • 4 Points
  • 00:15:22, 24 November

Just remember not to take it personally. These are her demons. As soon as you let her go, they will have nothing to do with you.

  • [-]
  • zaneluke
  • 6 Points
  • 01:04:33, 24 November

> I'm not sure why shes even trying to fix it.

Because the price of her student loans is like a house. Much easier to have you help pay for them. I bet you a gazillion dollars if you stay in this marriage she will be gone once her debt is gone. She is using you.

No sex for seven months? Really? that is enough reason to walk in itself.

  • [-]
  • dinosaur_train
  • 4 Points
  • 23:59:59, 23 November

> I'm not sure why shes even trying to fix it.

Because people like her do all kinds of things that are engineered to make you look like the crazy one. You divorcing because she cheated and gave you an STD will now be you giving up on her instead. You see? She just does what she wants to screw with your head and make you the bad guy here. You have to stop wondering why this or that, you have to STOP THINKING. When you try to use logic to figure out illogic you go crazy.

  • [-]
  • WestsideBuppie
  • 3 Points
  • 02:23:44, 24 November

This, so much this. OP, you sound like a decent guy. You make your own masks, Yukon provide for your wife by working hard, saving up and doing without. You work hatd at your research, engage in dangerous field work, though wait for your wife to liven up your bedroom instead of seeking solace elsewhere... you reek of virtue: patient, thrift, selfcontrol, fidelity, lovingkindness, ...im sure I could list more but you get the idea. You play by every rule in the book.

Your wife has never read the book. She cheats. She lies. She indulges in emotionality and extramarital sex. She is a spendthrift. She makes stuff up as she goes along and she doesnt deal well with reality.

You can certainly do better. Do not expect her to suddenly deal rationally with the separation plans. She'll say whatever pops into her head at the moment to try and hurt you. And you will absolutely feel it. But understand this....when it gets to bad, you don't have to speak to her at all. You can let your lawyer speak for you and allow him to filter out all of her crazy bullshittery.

PS Tell the truth. Don't give a hoot about her professional reputation. Do you want this level of cray cray teaching the next generation? I sure as hell don't.

  • [-]
  • PestiferousCrapkin
  • 4 Points
  • 05:10:45, 24 November

> I'm not sure why shes even trying to fix it.

Because this is probably one of the only cases where Reddit has an actual gold digger on its hands. She wants to fix it because you're willing to grind yourself into paste to make enough money to support her asinine demands, and you put up with her shit for longer than most men would have while also being celibate. She's about to lose her meal and toy ticket and she knows it, so she's in a rush to show you just how much she's changed.

  • [-]
  • foshrox
  • 1 Points
  • 14:49:37, 24 November

That last bit is what would enrage me. Kick her worthless ass to the curb and go about your life with someone who respects you.

Edit: also twist the knife man tell people shes a cheater and a whore.

  • [-]
  • natadecoco1
  • 13 Points
  • 21:01:00, 23 November

Yikes. I'm so sorry you are going through this. Standard Reddit advice applies here: no contact, lawyer up, hit the gym.

I know you want to be told to grow some balls, so here goes. Your wife has been playing you for a fool. She's taken advantage of you and made a mockery of your marriage. Your relationship will never recover from this.

The thing to remember is that you can do better than this. You will meet someone else. Not having 170k in student loan debt and not being a huge cheater is a pretty low bar so I'm confident that you are going to find someone better as soon as you are ready. You seem like a really nice guy and I think it's important for you to remember what a hot commodity that is on the dating market.

It may feel like it, but this is not the end of your life. It is a new beginning.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 12 Points
  • 21:06:27, 23 November

> It may feel like it, but this is not the end of your life. It is a new beginning.

Cant wait for that feeling. I keep thinking about the guy above, telling me to leave while I have the last scrap of dignity I have left.

  • [-]
  • natadecoco1
  • 7 Points
  • 21:30:18, 23 November

I don't always think that someone needs to leave when they have been cheated on--sometimes I think it's possible to work through this. But I just don't see that in your case. Your wife didn't stop and 'fess up. She only admitted and wanted to change after she got busted. She hasn't wanted to be in this marriage for a long time (the dead bedroom was a sign), so it's crazy that she's trying to save it now.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 2 Points
  • 21:33:46, 23 November

>so it's crazy that she's trying to save it now.

I dont understand this part, either. Why not leave, unless im the bitch at home, helping keep things sorted while she can leave the country.

  • [-]
  • mabden
  • 5 Points
  • 00:11:04, 24 November

There are 2 thoughts here:

  • She is a cake eater

  • You are her provider/back up while the piece of shit other man is her lover.

  • [-]
  • Vinay92
  • 4 Points
  • 23:50:09, 23 November

Yeah that's basically it.

  • [-]
  • Malium
  • 2 Points
  • 15:13:09, 24 November

> telling me to leave while I have the last scrap of dignity I have left.

You sound like a good guy, you have your PhD in progress, you have the balls to do dangerous jobs to further your goals, you're willing to put effort into a relationship. You've got plenty of dignity & integrity.

  • [-]
  • Made_you_read_penis
  • 8 Points
  • 00:46:08, 24 November

Look, of course she wants to stay; you're potentially a big amount of money and security to her. I'm not trying to be mean, but look at it from her view.

If you had a hot educated piece of ass that has a job wouldn't you stay? Sure, this imaginary girl's sexiness will fade to you, and your reality will set in that maybe she's not your one and only forever... even if you might not be sure, the promise of safety is good.

So you're maybe not cut out, and you now know it. Massive debt has hit you, and this hot girl disappears a lot, so you don't need to see her every day... Plus, she cooks and cleans for you. You can live with her being your potential paycheck/maid, and she goes away when you need it.

Oh look, a hot girl that you are attracted to. Well, it's not like you're really into girl #1, and this one offers you a whirlwind romance. You cheat. You get an STD. The romance ends. You realize that you almost threw away your meal ticket.

Well, girl #1 finds out. Your debt will be your responsibility, and you're going to be alone. Forcing yourself to bend to girl #1's requests doesn't seem like a hard thing to do now that the chance of losing the life you're accustomed to is a possibility. In your head you convince yourself it's gilt, because you don't want to admit to yourself that it isn't love, but survival that's in the picture.

In this scenario, you're a dog, and manipulative, but you don't want to admit that to yourself, let alone your partner.

In real life, you should leave her, she doesn't love you. Someone who does that doesn't love their spouse, but they sure as hell try to convince themselves that they do. She knows that you're a catch, she isn't stupid, just self involved, and only thinking of her future, at your expense.

This is only a theory.

  • [-]
  • Wordpervert
  • 7 Points
  • 21:20:48, 23 November

Did she sign the post nup? If not, I think you need to get it signed while she is still in the "let's make it work" mindset.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 7 Points
  • 21:22:16, 23 November

Yep. Signed.

  • [-]
  • Wordpervert
  • 9 Points
  • 21:37:54, 23 November

That is great! Correct me if I'm wrong, It sounds like you have kept separate finances throughout the relationship and no longer have a shared lease?

Honestly, In your situation I would cut ties, at least until you have the time apart to digest the gravity of what she has done.

Not only has she possibly given you an STD, she was hell bent on moving both of you closer to the guy she fucked! It sounds like the only reason she backed down was because distance caused their relationship to fizzle out.

You won't be able to trust her because her guilt didn't cause her to confess, you had to find out from a friend, AND she actually denied it to the bitter end. She didn't just break your trust, she shattered it. From this point on, each time you are separated because of work you will wonder if she is doing it again.

TLDR: You sound like a smart man, don't be dumb.

  • [-]
  • throwaway_yy
  • 6 Points
  • 21:49:57, 23 November

separate finances.. but theres still a shared lease. Thats the problem.

>she was hell bent on moving both of you closer to the guy she fucked! It sounds like the only reason she backed down was because distance caused their relationship to fizzle out.

1) This shit is insane. (moving closer to her lover) I cant figure that one out.

2) She says it was a mutual break because they thought it was wrong. I really think it was a foreign and married (read, clean) piece of ass, that wasnt interesting when she was far away.

  • [-]
  • IPleadDaFif
  • 10 Points
  • 23:15:10, 23 November

Shared lease is a drop in the bucket compared to the $170,000 debt you could have been forced to share. Thank god, I am relieved for you.

  • [-]
  • ass_fungus
  • 6 Points
  • 23:25:33, 23 November

Bro. Four years is not that long. You learn some hard lessons, but that's a fact of life. You are still young, and the world is very much your oyster.

I wish you the best.

  • [-]
  • zmoore661
  • 4 Points
  • 02:47:37, 24 November

Wow... that was a tough one to get through. You are clearly an extremely intelligent, articulate individual with many great traits. To put it bluntly, kick her to the curb and never look back. She did the ultimate betrayal and she did it with complete disregard for your feelings as well as your marriage as well. She just honestly seems like a shitty person and what she did was all sorts of fucked up. Move on and get with someone who can appreciate someone like yourself, because it ain't her! Best of luck to you.

  • [-]
  • throwaway77898977
  • 4 Points
  • 03:09:06, 24 November

Seems like she has very little respect for you, and you have very little respect for yourself for sticking by someone who treats you so poorly.

>Now, she is desperately doing all the things I've been asking her to do: Share some cooking responsibilities, go to counseling, work on the dead bedroom, stop keeping secrets, work on finances, and discover why she cheated. I've postponed filing for divorce to let all ofthis process, so I'm not making decisions in shock. I'm not going to twist the knife on her, and let her keep her reputation that she values, but I dont think I can come back.

No shit. She is in panic mode. Her fling fizzled how and now she is doing everything in her power to not lose her doormat and meal ticket. Once she has you firmly back in her pocket, what is going to stop her from regressing back to how she was?

Lets be real here, If this woman truly respected you then she would have been honest with you about the affair. Not only that but she would have met you halfway when you tried to fix your relationship. Instead she put no effort and got plowed by someone else.

Is that anyway to be treated by anyone? There is no integrity to be had by staying by someone so vile. You don't get a gold star for being the martyr in a fucked up marriage, only wasted ears of your life and the complete destruction of your self-esteem.

  • [-]
  • need_a_venue
  • 4 Points
  • 10:10:29, 24 November

If I was cheated on and "on the fence", my dick spouting puss that an STD she got from the other dude would hopefully push me over the edge.

What if it was incurable? What if she gets pregnant and then a few years down the road lets it slip you're not the dad?

The trust is dead, but at least you can save your penis.

  • [-]
  • bootybandit69
  • 3 Points
  • 00:54:33, 24 November

I would leave her

  • [-]
  • chbark
  • 4 Points
  • 02:32:03, 24 November

Not only did she have no regards for your feelings by cheating on you when you tried to enrich the marriage, she has no concern for your health either. She had unprotected sex with a random guy. You shouldn't care whether she was high or not. She has no respect for you and if you stay, you will continue to be walked on.

  • [-]
  • l4n
  • 3 Points
  • 11:19:48, 24 November

She's really only concerned about her reputation. She was previously planning of waltzing from you to him, with no single period in the middle. Now she can't. And I'll bet he's unavailable too. Her stock is about to lose 50% of its value... and she's scared.

  • [-]
  • WarSucksLetsParty
  • 6 Points
  • 02:03:08, 24 November

That was painful to read. If she died tomorrow, the world would be a better place.

  • [-]
  • zaneluke
  • 2 Points
  • 01:03:07, 24 November

Protect your finances get a lawyer and divorce her. This is not a counseling can help situation. The lawyer will be able to tell you about her school debt.

  • [-]
  • mabden
  • 2 Points
  • 00:02:08, 24 November

There are a lot of ways this can go. It is basically up to you to decide which way.

Option A: Reconciliation

  • She comes clean on the affair, which includes; all the sorted details, a timeline, and anything else you want to know about. Reason is you have to know what your dealing with as far as the extend of the affair and how deep of a fog she was in.

  • She goes no contact with the other guy. This means cold turkey, now and forever. She will never get out of the affair fog she is in if she remains in contact with the POSOM and thus any try for recon will be useless. Included in this step is a strong "no contact" letter to the POSOM that you approve and witness her sending.

  • She has to show true remorse and genuine apologies. It is on her to do the heavy lifting to reconcile the marriage.

  • There has to be consequences. This includes all of the above and her telling her family and friends what she has done and why.

  • She has to accept that the affair is all on her. It is not your fault she decided to spread her legs for some other piece of shit man.

  • Marriage Counseling with a counselor of your choice/approval.

  • EDIT: You have access to all her communications; email, phone, chat apps, facebook, whatever, 24/7, now and until you feel you can trust her again (if ever.)

Option B: Divorce.

  • Get a lawyer and have him draw up divorce/separation papers that satisfies YOUR requirements for divorce. No consideration is given to her. She did this, she suffers.

If you want to try recon, then have the divorce/separation papers drawn up and ready for signature when you present her with options A and B. Tell her here are your choices if you want any chance of saving the marriage (no guarantees by the way.)

  • If she agrees, then you can try recon.

  • If she balks at ANY of the conditions, EDIT: or violates any of the conditions, then go directly to option B.

If you get get to a place in your head that would allow trying for recon, then just option B her and get the fuck out as fast as possible, and go no contact with her. All comms can be through your lawyer.

Do not compromise (sweep under the rug) what she has done to you.

I feel for you guy and wish you the best.

  • [-]
  • whadabeep
  • 1 Points
  • 03:47:02, 24 November

you're 100% correct in waiting. Not sure if you realize. You are suffering from PTSD. This is such a common trend for troops and what you just described (in regards to work and hearing wife's voice) hit home for me. This happened to me AND my combat buddies. Upon returning home divorce almost always becomes the first issue. Most of us are able to salvage the damage. NOT all cases but alot of us work through the issues (to include cheating). It's not easy and don't take this as hope. It's just a reality and you might also want to check into PTSD