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Betrayed Spouse 101

Some Thoughts on 'Keeping My Man'

I was watching a movie one night in which one of the characters was having an affair with a Married Man, and she made a comment that the wife couldnít even Ďkeep her maní. Of course, that started the gears turning in my overactive brain, and I just have to comment.

Iíve seen many comments from Other Women on the other support boards, in reading resources, in the media, etc. concerning the wife feeling superior and arrogant in her belief that her husband would never fool around on HER. That the wife is so sure of her husband's devotion to HER, that it wouldnít even occur to her that her husband would do this.

I'm raising my hand on this one. Yes, I never thought my husband would fool around on me. I admit it. Never occurred to me. And on D-Day, my whole world was tossed upside down when I discovered the truth. But the big realization here for me was that it wasnít because I didnít think my husband would never fool around on ME. It was because I never thought my husband would fool around. Period. End of sentence.

An affair can theoretically happen in ANY marriage. No one is immune. But I thought I was, and not because Iím such an amazing sex-goddess-domestic-whiz-corporate-climbing-wonderwoman that my husband would naturally find any other woman lacking in comparison. I felt we were immune not because of my beliefs about ME, but because of my beliefs about my HUSBAND.

I believed my husband was first and foremost, a man of good character. A man with deep integrity and standards, a man with a strong sense of personal honor that was such a part of his makeup, it was inconceivable to me that he would do this. Yes, he would be tempted by others from time to time. I knew down to the marrow of my bones that MY husband would weigh that forbidden fruit not just against his relationship with me, but against his own personal standards of integrity and honor, and not want to compromise them. He was a decent, self-respecting man who was incapable of this level of intentional deception, selfishness and dishonor. I found out I was wrong. I was wrong about him and what I knew I valued in him, what I thought he valued in himself.

When I said ďnot MY husbandĒ, I wasnít doing it out of any kind of vanity or arrogance. I was doing it out of my unshakable faith in HIM as the man I thought him to be. One of the hardest parts of rebuilding for both of us was the realization that for that period of time, he was not what we BOTH thought he was. I think that realization was just as hard for him as it's been for me. He has a lot of guilt not just about what he did to me and our family, but what he did to his personal values, his career, his self-respect. He told me once after D-Day that he wants to find the man he used to be, because he was a better man. I told him Iíd rather him find the man he WANTS to be, because after all this pain and disillusionment, hopefully heís a STRONGER man.

So Iím Ďkeeping my man', flaws and all, and if he decides to stray someday in the future, it won't be because I didnít put on those stilletto heels, shave my legs hourly, cook gourmet meals, never let him see me without makeup and give him those 3 hour backrubs followed by olympic quality gymnastic sex on nightly basis. Its because he decided to toss his values out the door again. And in that case, he can just follow them on out.

MY values will be intact.

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