Hi. I came to this site years ago to find helpful advise. I was having an affair and did not know whether to leave my wife and move in with the girlfriend (and her three kids)or stick it out and rekindle my relationship. Well most of you ladies will be happy that I decided on the later and things have gone well. My wife rarely mentions the affair and we are generally very happy. I want for nothing. I am very well off, thank good and that helps as I could''nt put up with having to struggle again. But...the big but... I can not get over the affair in my mind and although I try I have continuous flashbacks of the good times which makes me feel guilty and sad. I also feel gut wrentching jelousy when I think of her being happy with someone else. Which is selfish and also makes me feel sad. Now what I want help with is clear sense from people both male and female who have been divorced or whatever to tell me that I am not mad and that I did the right thing and that it would have been a nightmare with a grumpy ex mistress and her kids and that I would have chucked shed loads of money away for absolutely nothing etc etc. I know it will make me feel better if people can just listen and help me. I hate feeling this way and want to forget and move on in my head. Even though it has been 2 years since we split and I made the decission. Paddy:unsure:
You''ll never know whether the grass would have been greener but one thing I can tell you is that the divorce process almost killed me. I truly cannot imagine going through the horror of it all again. I now live in a much more modest house and there is no doubt that it was a financial train smash for both of us. Having said that, I am now a much happier person and really do not want my ex to be any part of my life. That doesn''t stop me thinking about the happy days, our 31 years together, and what life might have been like being able to share the joy of our grandchildren. I despise the man but I still grieve for what I lost and the person he turned into.
Try to turn it around and think what you would feel if you had left and your wife had fallen in love with another man. You say you are happy, comfortably off etc. but are you in fact questioning the decision?
If your head is still in the whatmighthavebeens then I feel sorry for your wife. She deserves better.
As for what really might have been - well in my experience these affairs regularly implode, because they are not the answer to the problem that impelled them to happen. The question you ought to be thinking about is why did you look elsewhere for happiness. What is it about you that makes you unhappy with life?
I am sorry that I don''t know your story and am pleased that you chose your wife over the OW. However what I cannot tell you is that you made the right decision, only you can know that.
What you said:
But...the big but... I can not get over the affair in my mind and although I try I have continuous flashbacks of the good times which makes me feel guilty and sad. I also feel gut wrenching jealousy when I think of her being happy with someone else. Which is selfish and also makes me feel sad.
This is one of the exact reasons I have stuck to my guns and not taken back my ex. How can you possibly be expected to totally erase the OW from your mind? I said to my ex, about his OW, she is always going to be there. I didn''t mean in body, I meant in his mind.
It''s going to drive you made if you continue to think about it. Do you think you would have felt this way if you chose the OW over your wife? Probably the answer is yes. I don''t think you are going to win on this one. Again, I don''t know your story, but have you tried any counselling to try and understand how to get over this?
There is a theory that an affair does not happen in a happy marriage.
You chose your wife, but did either of you discuss the real problem (using the above theory)
Yes, having the affair was wrong, but what made you want to look outside your marriage? If that hasn''t been addressed then maybe you need to really think about the state of your relationship before the affair.
By just focussing on the affair and the guilt and hurt it caused, you may not be facing the really difficult issues in your marriage.
Unless you can work through those with your wife (I''m not talking about the affair) I don''t know how you''ll be able to get beyond how you feel now - you could still be wondering ''What if ....''
Life doesn''t come with a certificate for happiness. You identified that living with the OW Would mean supplying her three children with money. You didn''t mention love and emotion but then it''s not always easy to love someone else''s kids sometimes not even easy to love or like your own.
You choose to stay with what you know and what over time you came to like and dislike in your marriage. Money isn''t everything but its easier to stay friendly when there is enough money around and debt worries are a major factor in causing relationship break downs.
You have weighed it up in your own mind go with the first flush of an affair and rely on emotions or realise your mistake and return to something which provided stability long term.
It won''t be the same for either you or your wife and the very fact that you are posting proves it isn''t just the money that has made you turn back. You have a conscience and at the same time are suffering from doubt.
I think you will have the what ifs for a long time, maybe they will never be over. It''s common even when just dating rather than having an affair to feel jealous about what an ex is up to and doing so your feelings are not out of place.