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Hi everyone. I am new to this forum, but I stopped by because I need some support from people who have been there and know what im going through. Any advice/support/me too stories appreciated.
DH and i have been married for 4.5 years, living together for 6. Things were pretty good with us for the most part - we did have a very big issue with him having an online porn problem, lying to me about it/hiding it, saying he'll stop, and then not - but other than that things were good. Then about 2.5 years ago, I found out that he had made a profile on an online dating website. His profile said he needed to keep things very secretive since he was married and that he loved me but loved the "pleasures of other women". I was devastated. I found that he had emailed someone back and forth a couple times and sent a picture, but it turned out to be a guy (LOL). I found out about it about 6 months after it actually happened. i was devastated. He swears that he never actually did anything but I don't really believe him. What with his porn addiction, and now this.... i just have a feeling that he's not telling me everything. We went through a very rough patch and I was very depressed for some time. I didn't seek out counseling because I was just embarassed and I didnt want anyone to know about it because I didnt think they'd be able to forgive him like I thought that I could. I know it doesnt make sense, but I didn't want anyone to judge him - or ME for staying. I stayed, we got better...but I still didn't trust him. The fight kept coming back up. We got pregnant and had a baby girl, born 1 year ago. I feel like after she was born, things really started going downhill. He spent a lot of weekends staying up late, drinking, and then sleeping half the day away while I took on the responsibility of waking up with the baby and being an adult. we had many fights about this and he kept saying he would stop but then he'd start up again a few weeks later.. He did help out sometimes and he always made dinner, helped make up bottles, and help with bathtime - so its not like he's a total loser - he's not! he works hard at his job and makes pretty good money. but its not enough for me to not work, and that bugged me too. we talked about it a lot and i always made it really clear to him how badly i wanted to be home with the baby. He never made any effort to search for another job or try to find a way for me to stay home, and that was a huge source of frustration/anger for me towards him. I know he's just being logical (job market sucks, we're doing fine right now), but it really bothered me that he didn't think my happiness was enough reason to try to change things. SO at this point I am finally at my breaking point kinda in our relationship - just everything feels like its all built up and I just find myself so sick of him and mad at him all the time.
so that's the situation and then BOOM! I found out a couple weeks ago that he has been smoking and HIDING it from me for MONTHS and MONTHS. lying and hiding. This has brought back all of the bad stuff from before, when he tried to cheat on me (which I think he might as well have cheated on me for all that i believe him).... and I think that its so weird that its all coming back now, 2.5 years later but I really think I should have just ended it then. I can't trust him, and it feels like our entire relationship has just eroded over time. I still care about him but I jsut dont think I will be happy with him for the rest of my life, the main reason being that I DONT TRUST HIM. And to me, its almost as if he doesnt care about our trust, since he just keeps lying.
at this point, we're going along like things are normal, even though theyre not. I've told him how unhappy I am and that I don't know how I can go forward in our relationship if I don't trust him. The other day I made it clear to him just how unhappy I am and it was the first time I think that he really realized how serious it is, that we MIGHT actually get divorced. but since then, you know, life goes on and what cna you do but act normal until the decision is made? He told me that if I was the one who had lied/broken trust and he felt like I did, that he would get his own place for a while. I don't know how to do that with a baby. Every time i think about the reasons why not to get divorced, the only things i can come up with are stupid, like; my family will be disappointed in me, splitting everything up will be a pain, how will I be a single mom? I also feel like I don't want to think about DH out there all alone - i think he'll be sad and that makes me sad.
i can't figure out what to do. I feel so lost. I feel like I KNOW what I want but then I dont want to make the wrong choice. What if I am just trying to take the "easy" way out by not working to re-build trust? but then, I did spend 2.5 years trying to re-build it and caught DH keeping something from me again. I know it wasnt as bad as the first time (or even the porn), but he knows how i feel about smoking now, esp since we have a baby.
I think I'm going to try to talk to a counselor to try to sort out my feelings but I wanted to post this here just to see what you ladies think.
I think you should start with talking to a counsellor as a start as that may be a good option for you at this point.
I certainly can't tell you what you should do, as this is your life, and the life of your child; only you can make the decisions for you both.
If it were me though, with a loss of trust, with continual lying and the sheer unhappiness of the whole situation, I would not be giving any more chances. I would be sitting him down & calmly stating what needs to change, and if it doesn't, the marriage is over.
Of course, if you've made that 'threat' before during the heat of an argument, but yet you still remain, it's not going to hold a lot of weight any more.
What it comes down to is where you see your life a year, 2 years, 10 years from now.
Are you actually living or just existing? Even if your wish is a happy trusting marriage, don't convince yourself you can attain it if your heart knows you can't; you're doing yourself a disservice by not being honest about things for the future.
I don't come to this subforum that often. But to me, it sounds like your dh doesn't respect you or your marriage if he keeps lying and hiding things from you.
I would definitely get counseling and think about where you want to see yourself 2 years down the road. Then 5 and then 10. Can you see yourself forgiving him again?
It may not be the cheating he did before but lying and hiding is a huge way to hurt a marriage.
At this point, you should ask him if you and the baby mean something. As in, does he really want his family. Then before he answers, tell him how you feel. How much the lying has hurt. That he broke trust again. And be honest with him.
That aside, if it were me i'd done. The almost cheating/kinda cheating thing and now the lying and hiding things would be enough for me to tell him to get out. But that's just me.
You have to decide what you want and what you're willing to put up with.
Ps. I'm a single mom. And I go to school fulltime. It's doable if you have to.
I'm so sorry I missed this post when you first wrote it!
OK, playing Devil's advocate here. I am in NO WAY judging you or your husband because God knows I have made some huge mistakes in my life that I would hate to be judged on by anyone else, but I want to point out some things.
First of all, when you don't have consequences for your actions, you have no incentive to change what you're doing. All of us have secret desires that we either ignore or resist simply because what we stand to lose by giving in is worth far more than the pleasures we would otherwise gain. Simply put, we don't lie, cheat, steal, etc because we would lose our relationship/freedom/happiness/etc. When there are no consequences or the price is cheap, resisting becomes less important. If the penalty for stealing a million dollars was a stern talking to and 3 laps around the soccer field, I think more of us would be out there with guns. Instead, we stand to lose our freedom, the trust and respect of our family and friends AND the million dollars that we stole. Doesn't quite seem worth it when you think about it that way, does it? The first time he lied to you and his only consequence was that you were mad at him for a while and didn't trust him anymore, he decided that wasn't that big a price and he'd be willing to pay that. Not saying what you did was right or wrong--just the consequences for what happened. Now, many husbands/wives would determine that loss of trust and anger is far too high a price to pay for something that #1, you might have enjoyed together (many couples enjoy pornography as a way to spice up their sex life) and #2 only gave a short period of pleasure in return for such a high cost.
Again, I am not judging him or you but it sounds to me like he has a sex addiction problem and could benefit from counseling. The porn, contact with other women, risky behavior...it all points toward something like that. Unlike drugs or alcohol, sex addiction is more complex and difficult to overcome--you can live without drugs and you can abstain from drinking for the rest of your life...but sex? That's a lot harder. It's everywhere! You can't even watch a Disney movie anymore without some form of mild sexual behavior being shown and forget TV! Ads, billboards, commercials, internet...he// just walking around the mall you're exposed to sex...imagine being an alcoholic or drug addict who is trying to recover and having drugs or booze constantly offered to you. In a moment of weakness....well, it's harder to resist what is constantly being shoved down your throat.
That being said, there are only 2 people who can say if this marriage is worth trying to save or not--you and your husband. But as the other two ladies have asked...where do you want to be in 2/5/10 or as in my own case--22 years? I stayed in a bad marriage for 22 years and although I can't say I regret doing so because I have my children, I wish things had been different. If I could have my kids and they'd be exactly the same, I would definitely have gotten out years and years earlier...but that's not real life. So ask yourself--is it worth it TO YOU to try again? If it is, then find a counselor that can help BOTH of you with this addiction--his recovery and your understanding and accepting of his problems. He has got to understand that this is THE last chance though. If he feels like you're just going through the motions or trying to scare him into behaving...it won't work. He has to want to change and make it work and so do you. If your heart isn't 100% in this, don't bother. Get out now. As The previous poster said--it CAN be done! It isn't easy, but it's doable.
I hope that helped. I know how hard you are struggling with this...love vs happiness...how do you choose? The thing is, it doesn't have to be one or the other. You CAN have both and what's more you DESERVE both! If you can't get things back on track with him, don't do what I did and stay, thinking only of how much worse it could be. Think of how much better it could be and then make it happen.
Ugh....I am SO sorry for what you are going through. I just wanted to say....dont stay because you aren't sure how or if you can make it alone with your gorgeous baby girl. That's all. I hope you both can get through this 'ugly'.