Dear Ms. HeartBeat:
My husband had an “emotional” affair with a coworker at his job. At this time, I was pregnant and he was totally ignoring me. I lost 15 lbs during my pregnancy. I lost hair. My self esteem plummeted. It has been months now, I have had the baby. Let me add that we have a 3 yr old son. He is trying everything to show me that he wants this marriage to work, but it’s not working for me.
I now don’t feel for him as I use to. I don’t even want him to touch or kiss me. I am confused as to what to do with this relationship. I know he is trying, but I don’t know if I could ever trust him again.
I love him dearly, but he hurt me so bad, and while I was pregnant. That is the worst part about it and what makes it so hard for me to overcome it. What am I to do? I really need some advice here.
Ms. HeartBeat Responds:
Sadly, this happens quite often. I am by no means trivializing your story, but its one I’ve heard at least 3000 times since I’ve been an advice columnist. And since I am just one person hearing these tales, imagine how many are being told to other columnists and therapist. I feel the problem is common and one that needs to be addressed by mental health professions because I’m not sure what the catalyst is. I have no idea why so many men flip out and act a complete fool when their wives are pregnant with THEIR child.
What these selfish men don’t seem to get is that when a woman is pregnant, she is very vulnerable. Things that she may have been able to do before pregnancy, or things she can do once her body has healed from childbirth, are not the things she can do right now. She needs you to stand up and be a solid man. Each child has but one pregnancy and one birth; when a father messes up that time of his wife’s life and makes her upset and unhappy, he not only affects the emotional and mental state of the mother, but her unhappy energy flows into the baby making it fretful and afraid and unhappy as well.
Your husband wants to act like it was no big deal and everything should go right back to normal without missing a step. He wants to totally ignore the hurt he has inflicted on you, the distrust he has created in his household, and the emotional damage he has done to you and his 3 year old son. He needs to stop trying to brush this dirt under the rug, and instead face the reality of what his actions have done to ruin his marriage and family, possibly for good.
I recommend that you sit him down and tell him how you feel:
Tell him how deeply he has hurt you and that you aren’t sure you can ever forgive him.
Tell him that when you needed him the most, he turned his back on you and abandoned you and his children so he could chase after some woman and act like an irresponsible fool.
Tell him that you didn’t get married to be treated in such a shabby way, that you and his children don’t deserve that, and the he is a sorry ass mofo that needs to get his stuff together.
Tell him that you two need to go to marriage counseling and get some help working this through.
Let him know that you can’t make any promises about the marriage continuing, but that you are at least willing to talk it out and do what the counselor suggests to try to save your family.
The bottom line: if he cannot figure out what motivated him to think the way he treated you was the proper thing to do and promise never do it again, your marriage has no chance. And if you honestly cannot get over the hurt he has inflicted, your marriage will definitely not survive.
Finally, if he refuses to grow up and be a better man than the man he has been thus far, it is probably best that the marriage end anyway. No woman should ever be married to a man that treats her with such shabby disregard and disrespect. If the marriage and his wife has no value to him, then you have no purpose in his life and certainly, no reason to stay.