My husband has been having an affair wit
h a co-worker for the past four years and he is not hiding it. He says he does not want me, yet he is still living at home. Right now we have separate bedrooms. The co-worker is also married. My husband says I must either take it or leave it. Because he is the only one working right now, he uses it as a big stick over the kids and me. He picks up my kids from school with his mistress in the front of the car. I don’t have another place to live, so it’s difficult for me to move out of the matrimonial home. It has been a difficult time for us. It’s hard to see money being spent on another woman and her child, while your kids can’t even get a new suit of clothes. I never believed that my husband could be so cruel. All of a sudden I am being blamed for taking away his happiness and for everything that went wrong, and I’m supposed to be the reason he’s cheating. Right now I am trying to move on with my life, but it’s hard with him living in the same house.
When a husband treats his wife with such disrespect by blatantly cheating on her and then telling her she can either take it or leave it, this is most disturbing.
So he has indicated to you that he no longer wants you and blames you for his infidelity. If you were to do a review of the years you both have been together, would you take any responsibility for the breakdown in the marriage? Were you as loving and attentive to his emotional needs as you could have been? What do you believe was the driving force behind his behaviour?
Regardless of the reasons, there should have been a better way of handling the situation so as to cause you and the children as little emotional and psychological discomfort as possible. Counselling intervention would have been a worthwhile option. And even if reconciliation was not possible, a more amicable separation process could have been considered.
The challenge you face is having to depend on your husband financially and continuing to endure the disrespect. If you are not able to find a job that could make you financially independent, then he will continue to wield his power over you. He knows you don’t have many options, so it’s up to you to do something to change the situation. Can you get any assistance from family members? It’s worth a try.
It is always unfortunate when children are caught in the mix when a relationship goes bad. If in fact your husband is channelling funds away from his family to the other woman and her child, then he would have made a choice as to the importance of that family in the scheme of things.
The truth is, your husband has made a decision regarding his life, and so should you. The longer you remain in a state of dependency and indecisiveness, the more miserable your life will be. Sitting and wondering what may have prompted your husband to behave with such heartlessness won’t help; you have to find ways to empower yourself. Even if you can’t do anything to immediately change the situation, you need to maintain a sense of control and move away from the state of helplessness and despair.
You may need to engage the services of a counsellor to help you regain your self-esteem and dignity. In the meanwhile, don’t worry, be cheerful despite the odds.