Feeling alone

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-15-2001
Feeling alone
Sat, 08-09-2014 - 1:07pm

A couple of months ago I found out my husband cheated on me again (#4 that I know of). He slept with a woman he was in reserves with. I look at this situation and absolutely hate myself for continuing to put up with this. He blamed my seasonal affective disorder and of course I blamed myself. He is in therapy now; I refuse to go back into couples counselling with him. The last time we did it he was having another affair the whole time. I want to leave but several factors keep making me afraid to leave. 1) we have a lot of debt. He and I have been able to handle it financially together but I don't think I can handle it alone. 2) we live in Wisconsin; I have no family and very few friends around. I would truly be alone. I can't leave the state; my daughter is happy here and I don't want to uproot her life any further.3) I am scared of starting over at 40. I really don't know how to be on my own at this point. 

I realize as I read this how pathetic it sounds. I never thought I'd be this person. I just don't know where to begin again.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2011
Sat, 08-09-2014 - 3:16pm

I don't have any advice . I think the decesion to stay with your husband or not has to be your choice. I do want to say I'm sorry for all the pain and stress that you are dealing with right now . Big hugs 


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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Sat, 08-09-2014 - 5:20pm

At this point, just consult a lawyer--it doesn't mean that you HAVE to get a divorce, but you should be clear on your options.  While you are there, you should also ask him if it would be possible to file bankruptcy to get rid of the debt.  If you have joint credit card debt, it might be better to file a joint petition while you are still married, otherwise, one person would be released but the other one would still owe it--and bankruptcy doesn't necessarily mean that you can't keep your house, etc.  It's complicated.

Yes it is scary to be on your own, but it seems to me that living with someone who is a serial cheater and who obviously doesn't have any plans to give up the other women would make you feel more alone.  I got divorced when I was around 40 with 2 small kids--that was in 1996 or so, got married again in 2003.  The 2nd marriage was much WORSE.  The first divorce was not my choice but the 2nd one was--my 2nd DH had bipolar disorder and it was very difficult to live with him.  By the time we got divorced, I was over 50!  I still had my kids, which was great, but I looked around and basically had 2 single friends, one of whom lived an hour away.  I have no family in the state but they aren't too far--an hour.  Luckily at least I had a job the 2nd time--the 1st time, I was under-employed.  So I made a plan so that I wouldn't be alone all the time.  First I joined a women's group because I figured it would be better to start looking for women friends than to start dating--you know how that goes--at least you can count on the women to be around.  Well the group had mostly married women, so that didn't work out as planned, but I still met some nice people.  I joined some meetup groups and had some good times, then I started taking ballroom dancing lessons.  For me, that was the answer.  I ended up meeting a bunch of single women and now we are very close and go out all the time on weekends, wich has been a life saver, since my youngest is going to college now.  The point of this is that you have to try new things, but if you keep trying, you will make friends and you won't just be alone.  The fear of the unknown shouldn't be a reason to stay in a bad marriage.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2009
Sun, 08-10-2014 - 11:44am

Cheating is a form of abuse!  The abuser ALWAYS makes the victim the one at fault!  You having SAD is forcing him to cheat on you, right?  And the abused person is usually gullible enough to accept the blame.  Cheating is mental abuse, no different than physical abuse.  And then to add insult to injury, it's YOUR fault. (Wisconsin is NOT Alaska!  I have friends there, they don't have SAD!)  Get a sun lamp, and then see what he'll blame it on!  After 4 times, you're so mentally weakened, that you accept that whatever he does is your fault.  The first thing you need to do is to realize that he's a cheater, a liar and not worth wasting any more time on.It's time to take back the power he's taken away from you.  There is nothing to be afraid of.  The debt?  As Musiclover said, talk to a lawyer.  Every state has different laws, it depends on many things.  If you have no family around, then make plans to go where your family lives.  You didn't give your daughter's age, but I doubt she's a baby.  She can be happy anywhere, if she's in a happy home, and right now she is NOT in a happy home.  Most kids would rather be FROM a broken home than IN one, and your home is broken.  She has a miserable mother, and a father who's busy with other women.  That's NOT a happy home. 

 I ended a miserable marriage to a cheater when I was 39.  I remember when I was still married I felt like an old hag.  Of course, my husband MADE me feel that way, too.  When I finally decided I'd had enough, I got a lawyer and filed for a divorce.  Do you think I wasn't scared....an OLD lady starting over again?  I hadn't worked in almost 20 years!  What skills I'd had were now outdated!  And I had THREE teen aged sons to take care of!  Guess what?  The minute he was gone, I felt a LOT better.  The minute the divorce went thru, I felt YOUNG, and I felt like I could conquer the world!  40 IS young......and all you need to do is get away from the man who's making you feel old and useless, and you'll feel great again!  Mental and verbal abuse is so insidious, you don't even realize it's happening, and you've started to believe it!  My ex loved to call me "fat a$$" and "bushel bucket"!  I was 5'8" and 130 pounds......hardly fat anything! 

You just have to start believing in yourself, and taking charge of your life! Talk to a lawyer, see what your options are.  Get a job, get some money in your pocket, and make plans to go "home".  Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline......1-800-799-SAFE.  Mental abuse IS violence......they can give you help, or tell you where to go for help.  They can tell you how to safely and easily get out of your marriage.  Get pro-active.  Stop being a "victim".........you can do it if you just make up your mind to do it! I've been in your shoes, I was afraid, I had no money, no job, but I also got SICK of being treated like a dog......and I DID IT!  You can too!

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2006
Sun, 08-10-2014 - 1:21pm

You are A LOT STRONGER then you believe yourself to be. You need to leave this relationship.Out of the few friends that you do have where you're at...could one of them allow you to stay there with them until you get back on your feet? Screw the debt...you need to LIVE!! The sooner you make the move to leave this situation..the better off you and your child will be in the future.This guy will NEVER change.He will keep on cheating.The thing is...once a cheater..ALWAYS a cheater!! Please just go to a friend there and tell them everything.They will be able to help you get back on your feet.File for divorce while you're going through this.You deserve to be free of all of this.You are ONLY 40yrs old!!! You have so much more life to live!! DO IT!!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-09-2014
Thu, 08-21-2014 - 3:04pm
JustJen, I can imagine how scary it must be to be on your own but you can do this ONLY if you are determined to make it happen. Do you want to continue living this lie for the rest of your marriage? Your H is a serial cheater, you found out about 4 women and who knows how many more in between that you don't know of. You can be potentially exposing yourself to some health risks by being with him. This is not healthy and that thought should trump all else. Do you have family in another state that you can stay with? Can you possibly file for bankruptcy? Is it easier for you to live this way rather then free yourself and be happy. It must be hard going to bed at night wondering what your H is doing and who he's doing it with. You shouldn't live life that way. Wishing you the best!