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How will divorce affect my 3 little ones?


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I have three vibrant, smart kids - 6 yr old, almost 4 yr old, almost 2 yr old.


I have been trying to reconcile with my husband for 5 months now since the night he moved out. We've been together since we were 16, dated 7 years before marrying, married 7 years now. I was/am devastated. I confessed to cheating on him after he had all ready been gone 6 weeks - he had told me to just tell him the truth (he had suspected it) and we could work through anything. He was wrong, I guess, but I believed him.


So although he pays all of the bills, he's left me with the 3 kids and sees them a few hours a week.


I'm sure you can tell, I am desperate to reconcile, I miss him, love him, and have taken responsibility for what I've done. I know that this is my fault. We still talk daily, he sees me daily, says he still loves me, but that love is not enough. He hasn't filed for divorce but he's also not making any steps towards reconciling.


So, what about my kids?

Will they remember going through the divorce?

He has a mean temper, so I'm sure it will be ugly.

Will they suffer not having him live with us?

Im sick with worry and guilt and love sickness.

What can I do to help them?

What can I do to help myself?


Thank you in advance - all opinions are more than welcome.

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I don't think divorce is good for kids but they are resilient and will be ok if both parents show that they love them.


I scanned some of your previous threads about this break-up and how sorry you are that you cheated on your husband.


What I didn't see was why you did. It is an important question because without knowing why you cannot know for sure that you won't be tempted to do it again. And he will never be convinced if you are not.

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Having never been married myself, I cannot offer any advice as to what to do to get him back.


Speaking from personal experience however...my parents ultimate divorce affected me much, much less than watching my family crumble over the eight years they spent together, completely miserable, after my mother found out my dad had cheated. They stayed together "for the kids" and in the end just couldn't work it out - at the end they completely resented each other and the wasted years they spent trying to repair something that was beyond repair. I really wish they had gotten a divorce back in '82, when I was young and had no idea what was going on. Instead, they divorced when I was 11 - and we knew about everything. I think my parental resentment ran deeper b/c I was aware of what happened and saw only the shell of a marriage between people I once knew as loving couple.

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I scanned some of your previous threads about this break-up and how sorry you are that you cheated on your husband.


What I didn't see was why you did. It is an important question because without knowing why you cannot know for sure that you won't be tempted to do it again. And he will never be convinced if you are not.


Hi DN, I really appreciate your insight on this - I've read a lot of your threads too and respect what you say.


Why I did it? Mostly, I think, my own insecurities about my husband and my marriage. We had stopped connecting, stopped really being friends, and I felt alone. I also had high suspicions of him cheating on me and I was angry with him. And I didn't feel appreciated for me just as "me" - rather than a mom, the breadwinner, the one who always fixes everything. I realize now that I should have turned to my husband and confronted these feelings and issues, but instead confided in my male friend which in turn made the friendship the relationship that I focused on. At first I really did think it was harmless, he was just a friend, right? But then friendship changed, the more he and I confided in each other about our relationships. I KNOW *now* these were MY issues, NOT my husbands. And I know that HE WAS the one that I promised I would turn to, not another man. That's where it all went so completely wrong. Because my cheating wasn't about me not loving my husband, it was about me - wanting to connect, feel wanted, and be recognized for "me". I was selfish.


So, now I know that I have to be honest, even if it hurts or is very uncomfortable - in order to be happy. I know that I have to own my feelings and issues and address them in order for the situation to change.


It also compounds the matter that about 5 weeks after he left (he didnt know about the cheating at this point), we got into a huge fight, I felt he took the side of the other girl we had been involved in - and I finally said - fine, we're done. He wouldnt even listen to a word I said, said he didnt even care. I met up with an old guy friend (from the same work) at a friends get together that night, we hit it off and I started dating him (for 2 wks). My husband can be very hurtful and I had my fill of listening to him tell me he hated me, he was sorry he married me, etc.... and of course, I was stupid to think dating someone would help me forget him. Partly, I wanted to move on, and I wanted to hurt him back. He says to this day that it was the person I chose to date that shows him how disloyal I am - not the fact that I was dating someone. He hates the guy - and Im sure subconsciously that fed into part of why I chose this guy - but trully, this guy treated me so well and I felt starved for affection.


When my husband told me I could tell him the truth about cheating - I finally opened up and confessed. I even told him I was dating someone new at the time. But my whole confession came out over 4 days, down to the most graphic detail (at my husbands request). He says that because it took me 4 days to get out "all the truth", it caused more damage. I was just terrified to tell him, so scared! But it all did come out, because I believed him that "we could work through it".


After seeing the pain in my husbands eyes and soul, and knowing how much I've hurt my little family, I just know that it is NOT WITHIN MY ABILITY to risk hurting anyone again for such foolish selfish immature reasons. And it hasn't just affected the 5 of us - its affected my parents, his parents, friends, business partners. Not to mention the personal pain I've gone through.


Im miserable. I can't really tell where my husband stands - he seems to be standing "still". He says he doesn't know what he wants still - after 4 months. He's still calling/texting/seeing me - not filing for divorce. He says he still feels like theres more that I'm not telling him - he thinks that I'm still holding back and not telling him all the truth about everything. I can understand that worry - because he can't trust me - but how do I get him to accept that I have told him everything so we can start to move forward?


Part of me is also scared because this is really the first time he's been on his own - been with me since 16. He's going out, making new friends... what if he decides that he wants his freedom more than me and his family?

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If you haven't tried counselling then you should try it.


If he will not then you could suggest some 'self-help counselling' which you do on your own. I might be able to help you do that if both of you are willing.

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If you haven't tried counselling then you should try it.


If he will not then you could suggest some 'self-help counselling' which you do on your own. I might be able to help you do that if both of you are willing.


Thank you - he doesnt believe in therapy but he did agree (finally) - we went to one session 1.5 wks ago and he hated the counselor (she was off on a couple things), says she was an idiot, will never go back, new counselor or not.


I am in therapy.


Are there any books you could recommend for me or my husband? Or exersizes to work on?


Does it seem like he's just not able to get past it but doesnt know how to just end the relationship?

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Get "Surviving an affair" by Harley.

And visit link removed


Your husband is hurt and betrayed. And yes, he will be asking you the same questions about the affair. You need to be honest and trasparent about everything and come clean no matter how many times he asks you about that. He is still suspicous. He doesn't trust you. If you don't answer his questions, he might think that you are still hiding something and may do it again.


Your husband hasn't filed for divorce yet. He is still involved with you and children. He is still angry - it's better than to be in withdrawal. It's a good sign actually. You can still work it out with him.


Make your house warm and inviting. Take good care of yourself and look your best when he comes to visit the kids (sexy, happy, smiling, and glad to see him). Don't beg, don't talk about divorce, and don't make thousand of promises that you will change. Show him the change.


Take good care of the kids and plan fun family activities together. Invite your husband to participate. Your family, your shared history, your children are your best bets to attract your husband back into your life. It will take a long time for him to heal. Please be patient.


You need to be aware of something though. He might have a revenge affair just to hurt you back.

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i agree with lava.


my parents divorced when i was four. a lot of the aspects of the divorce are some of my most vivid childhood memories- when they first told me, watching them argue over dividing up really stupid things like records and books, fighting over financial issues, my mom being upset at my dad's new gf. so, yes, i remember it and it wasn't "fun," but i think in the end i turned out pretty okay! the big keys, though were:


1. my parents ALWAYS stressed that the divorce had nothing to do with me, that it wasn't my fault in any way and although they didn't love each other anymore, they still both loved me more than anything.

2. i continued to see them both on a regular basis so i never felt abandoned or anything.... and

3. my parents DIDN'T do this, but i think it would have been very helpful if they had tried- at all costs- not to fight in front of me, and sent me off to my grandma's or somethign when they were dealing with the nitty gritty of the financial/division of assets issues. i suppose arguing is inevitable, but i think for the sake of the kids, you shold try to act civilly toward each other when around them and set a good example of behavior....


so, yeah, it'll be hard on them, but they're not going through it alone- they have each other (not to mention the however many millions of other kids w/ divorced parents) and they'll be fine! it's much better than have two happy separated parents than parents who are together and miserable!!

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  • 2 weeks later...

The repercussions of divorce for the children will probably be what you two make of them. If you can be good to each other, then they will probably be ok. But you don't want to stay together if there is a risk of life becoming bitter, because that will be so much worse for the kids.


My parents divorced when I was 8. I knew it wasn't me, and they both at least made sure that I knew it wasn't me. You are probably going to need to come up with a way to explain it that you screwed up, you betrayed him, and he doesn't love you anymore as wife. But that he still loves them as children, and that you do to. They are going to find out eventually what you did, you might as well not have it be when they are surely teens


All I can say about him is give him time if he is taking it, and don't put a lot of pressure on him, or try to make him feel obligated. If there is really any chance to save it, it will come through your contrition and his belief that either he can trust you again, or that he can live with the uncertainty.


Counsellors can really suck - I don't trust them much myself, because they see similar stories all the time and miss the critical nuances. I don't think they have helped my wife much at all, thought it might be because she doesn't take them seriously either. But some can be good, and they should help you converse (thought it doesn't sound like that has been a problem in your case).


Moonbeam seems like she has a lot of good ideas. But one other thing - you can't seem false about it. Don't push that line of being too ingratiating - it will probably seem obvious to him, and he is going to be super primed to see signs of falseness. I think you are going to need to come to terms with yourself (if you haven't already), so you can show him the real you, the one that has really learned a lesson, and really wants him back because you love him and not because of any other motive (like finances), and the one who is never, ever going to do something like that again.

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i divorced my husband when my kids were 12,9 and 2. it wasn't easy but they are fine now. just make sure you do everything in your power to keep it together before you divorce...it is definitely best for the kids to stay together. divorce makes everything more complicated. my kids are now 22,19 and 12. holidays, birthdays, graduations, vacation schedules....very complicated at this stage. it would have been so much nicer to still be under the same roof enjoying the kids as a family....but you have to know that the marriage is either going to work or not. in my case the marriage was destructive to our children.

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