I just talked to my sister on the phone and it reminded me that I wanted to post about the pain of keeping my husband’s affair from them. It has been a very difficult part of my journey. I tend to be an outgoing and friendly person, but my personal support system consists of just a few very treasured people. They would drop everything to come to my aid, and I would do the same for them. I chose not to tell them about my husband’s affair because they would hate him forever. Since we are trying to work things out, I’ve decided it’s best not to tell them. But that has come at a price.
It has been easy in some ways because I joined my husband in a new city just a couple of years ago, and my closest friends and family are back in our old city. So we don’t physically see each other very often anymore. It’s mostly email and texts and phone calls. So it’s not too hard to keep the elephant in the room covered up.
My brother and sister, however, know something is wrong. They have each visited me a couple of times during the past year and noticed I was not quite myself. I tried to be, but when the pain was a constant weight on my spirit it was hard to be as light and quirky as I usually am. They tried to fish around to find out what was wrong, but gave up.
I have some difficulty keeping up a long conversation with them. I do not keep up with news and entertainment as much as I did before. My life was consumed by the affair for the entire past year. The only things I read concerned affairs and related topics, or work. I’m only now starting to come out of that, so there was nothing much I could share with them. They told my daughter that I seemed less involved with life.
I think they both feel slighted that I don’t share whatever it is that is bothering me. I have never kept anything from them before. It has caused a bit of a strain between us. So in my attempt to maintain my husband’s relationship with them, I have damaged my own. Yet again, I pay the price for his crime. I know it is my choice, and I intend to stick with it. It’s not so hard now that I am finally feeling more like myself again, but I feel pangs of sadness at this. It’s another sense of loss.
But if I am completely honest, I have to admit that it’s not just for my husband’s sake that I keep this quiet. I am humiliated by his affair. Rationally, I know that I don’t need to feel this way, but I can’t get rid of it. I don’t want anyone to know.
Not sharing with the people who normally support me in all things – — it feeds that sense of isolation and loneliness. But I still think it’s for the best. For me and my situation anyway.