Littlebylittle
So it's been a year since I've posted,  a year since I've seen him actively trying to keep his relationship with the AP and yet it still keeps haunting me. He is home more than he has ever been in 15 years of marriage,  yet the one night he spends away on the road, the AP comes up as a suggestion in my Social media. Does this mean he's seeing her still? I don't trust him. I can't forgive. I will never forget how horrible his affair has been for me. 3 years he spent in an emotional and physical relationship with another woman while I spent every day taking care of our kids,  our home and many animals. He wasn't here for me and he spent his energy,  attention and time on another woman,  someone he says is his best friend. 
So now 1.5 years after D-Day I finally asked him what he decided and he says us, me, the kids - and said I shouldn't pay any attention to suspicions or signs of her.
But it's impossible to ignore the signs. If I had access to his phone I know I would see that they are still talking and even meeting. 

I am unable to trust him. I am unwilling to leave him because it's best for my children. I'm stuck in the middle of a terrible situation. He loves her but is obliged to be here as a dad and husband. 

Thank you for listening. 

BS
Married 15 years 
2 teens
DD April 26, 2019
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TimT
When you say "if I had access to his phone..." do you mean that he does not allow you to see what's on his phone? And when you refer to the AP as "someone he says is his best friend," is that really in the present tense? He calls her that now? And are you saying that you've been with him for 1.5 years and he's just now trying to convince you he chooses you?

If all those are true, of course you don't trust him. Before you should risk that kind of vulnerability, you need "enough time filled with the right stuff" (trustworthy behavior). He apparently hasn't provided that, so any suggestion that you stop questioning and just believe him would be impossible for anyone. If the situation were reversed, I guarantee he wouldn't be doing any better.

So, you seem to lay out a clear case as to why you can't trust him. I guess most of the people in this forum would agree with you.

But then you say your unwilling to leave him because it's best for your children. I don't know your story well enough to provide much insight into that, but I wonder what lessons they're learning through all this. I will not question the need to consider stability in the life a child (including financial stability) but you should be clear about the price that's being paid for it.

If you truly cannot trust him... and you truly will not leave him... then the only thing you really can do is stop trying to change him (that won't work) and accept the sacrifice you are making by being in a marriage that is without a satisfying and secure connection. Take the pressure off him and figure out how to get healthy on your own. 

Or discover that maybe you really can leave.

I rarely recommend the book Leave A Cheater, Gain A Life because it is void of any hope for healing in a marriage and is very harsh against counselors, like me, who "claim" that couples actually can heal. (They can... I know a LOT of them!!) But I do recommend it to women who seem to be stuck in a marriage with someone who is playing the game... a husband who isn't changing. The book offers some really good advice to women in that kind of situation. I'd encourage you to read it as long as you're not offended by the author's frequent use of F-bombs.
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Littlebylittle
Thank you Tim for reading my post and your thoughtful advice. I will find that book.

We've been married 15 years. He's cheated for the last 4 of those, I found out about a year and a half ago. It's only been 1 year since I had secretly accessed his phone to see the ongoing affair. No, he doesn't give me access to his devices. 
He doesn't refer to her like that anymore,  hasn't mentioned her since last February and says he's chosen to be with me,  that he loves me. 
Yes, I am stuck.
I'm better now than last year for sure. I'll stay with him until I see any evidence that he's still cheating,  but I really wish (and have asked) for him to stop all contact with her,  something he has never agreed to. 
Mostly I feel like I'm in the dark. You've said it perfectly "a marriage without a satisfying or secure connection".
And I don't know if it will ever be,  certainly not without great effort by him.

Thanks again,  your forum and materials have been extremely helpful to get me this far, at least happy some of the time. 
LL
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Vanessa
My personal, nonprofessional, opinion is that if they are still in contact they are still in the affair.
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DocNietzsche
At a minimum, continued contact is emotional engagement.
Male BS
Married 21 years
2 kids (27 and 20)
D-day Aug. 2020
Trying to stay together
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