About a year ago my husband and I decided that I would go overseas to work for six months, as financially we weren't doing well in Jamaica. Just about three months into me working, my neighbour messaged me to say that another woman was visiting often, often stayed over, and was basically playing mom to our kids. This wasn't the nanny we had hired to take care of the children.
When I confronted my husband, he got disrespectful and said she was just a friend, reminded me that he had needs too, and said if I was so concerned, I wouldn't have left. He made no move to get her to stop coming there, in fact, he was even more brazen with the relationship.
I returned home after my work ended, and he promised me that we could start over. He said he had to be happy, and also encouraged me to do what I needed to do to make myself happy. I suspect that he is still seeing this woman, as I found things she owns in his car.
What would you suggest?
Junior Kelly said in his song, "If love so nice, tell me why it hurt so bad?!" Yes, if love is such a good thing, why does it seem to cause such pain? You've done all that you thought was needed and right for your family and now you're faced with all of this. You've sacrificed for them, and here comes this other woman into your home and family. It can feel very unfair and very cruel. Let me answer Junior Kelly's question and make a point, then I'll give my suggestions.
Some people feel sad about investing in love and marriage if they see it breaking down and falling apart. They feel they were wrong for the sacrifices they made, and for making themselves so vulnerable. But it is actually a mature, well-thinking person who commits to something and follows through diligently. A mature adult makes a decision and then puts out their best to make it work. Taking a chance on love is often actually a healthy bet to make. Generally, the happiest, healthiest people are those presently in love or those that have been in love.
You may have heard, "It is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all". Science agrees! People that have "loved, and lost" live better and longer lives than those that shy away from pursuing love. It's because of the value and power of love that it "hurt so bad" when it breaks down. But you'll never experience the value and power of it if you never risk being hurt by it.
Have no regrets: You pushed to do the best for your family, don't feel bad now. You made the best decisions you could with the information you had at the time. Don't feel remorseful.
Get some help: It would be smart to get counselling help to sort through the miscommunication, misunderstandings, false expectations and disappointments between you both. I'd suggest speaking to your husband about going to a counsellor together. Plan how to approach him. If he's amenable, then find a reputable counsellor and make a booking.
Weigh your options: If your husband isn't open to getting help, and you're still doubting the termination of that other relationship, then you need a plan to move on. Move on when you are convinced you've done everything in your power to unearth the truth and secure the marriage. Include in your plan talking to your children to reassure them of both your love and their safety.
Statistics say the three main reasons for divorce are sex, communication and money. Struggling to find enough money to live securely can really put a good marriage on the rocks. I pray that you'll all find peace and happiness again.
Get on The Counsellor's Couch with Rev Christopher Brodber, who is a counsellor and minister of religion. E-mail questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.