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How can a wife cheat for 3 years and act like everything is ok?

Tagged as: Cheating, Marriage problems<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (10 November 2017) 14 Answers - (Newest, 14 November 2017)
A male United States age 26-29, anonymous writes:

After I found out that my wife was having a three year affair with another man, I gave her an ultimatum and she ended it....she eventually told me that she made a big mistake, and didnt know what she was thinking the past three years...I found out that they got together at his place every chance they safely could, and she didnt need any can a wife cheat on you for three years, and at home, never even act like anything was wrong? During this time her and I were still having sex, working, going on vacations,excetera.... If i didnt uncover this affair, i wonder how long this would have continued??? Any opinions on my wifes behavior?

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A female reader, aunt honesty Ireland + , writes (14 November 2017):

aunt honesty agony auntOnly she has the true answers for you OP, but am guessing she will keep lying to you. She would still be cheating on you if she was not caught, which makes me wonder why on earth would you still want to be married to a woman like this? I mean I get that you must love her, but can you love and trust her even though you know she has been having sex with another man so freely behind your back? Do you honestly think she will not cheat again. I mean you have forgave her this time so there is even more thrill in it for her now to go and find someone else who will invite her in to there home and she can seduce. You are better off getting divorced or even an annulment on the accounts off adultery and starting again fresh, you deserve a woman who desires you and nobody else, who loves you enough not to want to cheat and hurt you.

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A female reader, femmenoir Australia +, writes (13 November 2017):

femmenoir agony auntYour wife is obviously a very cunning woman and a great actress at best.

Honestly, how she was able to live out a "normal" life and marriage with you, whilst happily playing "mistress" on the side and obviously very discreetly at best, is beyond my understanding.

When things like this happen, i always ask, if the coin was flipped and she had been in YOUR shoes, i doubt very much that she'd have ACCEPTED what you did to her, nor would she EVER be able to forgive you.

How do i know?

Ask any normal minded woman?

No woman (especially married) in her right mind, would ever be able to forgive their spouse for carrying out, secretly and quite casually, a 3 year long affair.

It just wouldn't happen and rightly so.

Your wife is a very selfish woman who carries no "proper marital moral compass" and you know what?

She IS NOT sorry at all that she had this affair, however, SHE IS sorry that she got caught out by you!

If you hadn't found out and given her your ultimatum, she'd have easily and happily continued with this affair.

This is why, she can act so casual, after having done something so wrong within your marriage.

She doesn't really care, when crunch comes to crunch.

How can you truly place any trust at all in such a woman and what makes you think that she has ended her 3 year long affair?

I am quite sure that she isn't completely finished with her "side dish" and if ever granted a 2nd opportunity, she'll head straight to him.

She may even have a new affair with somebody else, because she's already shown/proven to you, that she's very capable of such acts.

The worst part about all this is, she's really emotionally invested in this other guy and i suspect she's over you emotionally and has been for many years now.


You must go to her, ask her and hear what she has to say.

The other issue, even when she tells you what her reason for doing this is, how can you ever be sure that she's telling you the complete truth?

You know the old saying, once a liar, always a liar.

Well, there is some truth to this statement.

Yes, most, if not all of us tell a small white lie from time to time, but most of us, DO NOT carry on a 3 year long affair behind our partners backs.

This is no white lie, but a "mortal" lie.

You shouldn't be so forgiving, because this gives her the impression that what she did, wasn't really that bad.

Your forgiving, tolerating and accepting nature, is surely giving her carte blanche to commit this act again, if/when granted her next opportunity.

You should let her know that what she did is totally unacceptable and intolerable and you've lost all trust in her and if she wants to regain any of your trust, she'll be working on this for a long time to come, UNTIL you can clearly see that she genuinely has changed.

She CANNOT EXPECT YOU, to simply say, it's ok, i love you and move on with your marriage, as though nothing ever happened.

Easier said than done and certainly easy for her to expect this and to not wish to be hassled over HER AFFAIR, because SHE did the dirty on you and she doesn't care.

As i said before, if you'd done this to her, it'd be a whole different story and i doubt you'd ever, ever hear the end of it.

She really doesn't deserve you and surely you know this.

Some things within a marriage CAN be forgiven, but a 3 year affair, this is completely UNFORGIVABLE.

If you choose to remain with your wife and fall for her lies and her smart deception, you will again, one day be hurt even further.

I'm quite sure that she will do this to you again, because once a betrayer, always a betrayer and she'll jump at any chance to do what SHE wants to do.

I would NEVER forgive such a person.

She doesn't deserve your forgiveness, let alone your love, commitment and loyalty.

Good luck!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 November 2017):

When a spouse cheats, it means they have emotionally checked out of your marriage.

This theory applies ten fold to women.

Emotionally she is done. She has disconnected from you and your marriage.

It is rare for a woman to love her husband and have a 3 year relationship (including sex) with another man.

She loves him. Not you. She would have kept seeing him if you didn't catch her. She might still be seeing him now even though she said she ended it. She is a professional actress. You will never be able to trust any words that come out of her mouth.

If I were you, I would leave. She is never going to change. Her behaviour is a character flaw. If she really did end it with this man, it will only be a matter of time before she starts another affair.

Do you want to wait around for that to happen?

Your love and forgiveness will never be enough to change her and it will never be enough for you to ever trust her again. You will never feel safe. And this insecurity and instability will eat away at you and take your marriage down with it.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (11 November 2017):

Dont give her a chance and divorce her.

You will be cheated again by this women and then you will be hurt much more than you hurted this time.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (11 November 2017):

I believe that forgiving your wife was a generous thing to do. It free you up from allowing her to control your mood anymore. It exposes her to your unconditional love for her. Your next choice will come from the answered prayer to the creator and designer of marriage.

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A male reader, Garbo United States +, writes (11 November 2017):

Garbo agony auntIm not claiming that I know her motives but here are some that I know of that cheating wives used.

One is that they love to be desired by men so that thrill of being desired (or her ability to make him desire her) is what may have motivated her.

Another is that for some women (and men) sex is just another activity like, say, washing a car, and they assign no sanctimony and significance to it in marriage.

Third one is that the cheating women may have had some unwanted sexual encounter in childhood which in some way acts as impulse to cheat.

Of course, could be any of the other ones mentioned by aunts although I do agree that she is likely sorry that she got caught rather than sorry that she cheated.

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A female reader, Youcannotbeserious United Kingdom + , writes (11 November 2017):

Youcannotbeserious agony auntShe cheated for the same reason as MOST people cheat: because she COULD.

I have a different question for YOU. How was she able to meet up with this man for 3 whole years without you realizing something was wrong? Was she just very good at covering her tracks? Or is it possible that, as long as your wife meets your needs, you don't really notice HER? I ask because 3 years without ANY inkling that something is wrong is an awfully long time. In addition, there are usually SOME signs that something has changed. Many people who have been cheated on say the first signs that something was wrong was that the partner doing the cheating changed habits and ways of behaving. They started buying a lot of new clothes, or started taking much better care of themselves than usual, or started going out a lot more for "reasons" which didn't quite ring true. Is it possible you just MISSED a lot of signs that something was wrong? Not excusing your wife's behaviour, but just saying that, for her to carry on the affair for that long, she was either very lucky and/or devious, or you were just not paying attention.

Whether you choose to class the affair as a "mistake" is entirely your choice. In my mind, a "mistake" is a drunken one night stand or a fumble at a Xmas party, not a calculated planned 3 year affair. That is not a mistake. That is a choice.

It seems you have chosen to forgive your wife and try to stay in your marriage (I assume as you don't actually say). WHY have you not asked your wife why she CHOSE to cheat on you? Is it because you two don't actually communicated much? Or are you just terrified of what you will find out? Have you told her this is her last chance and that you will tolerate another such "mistake"? Or does she generally feel she can treat you any way she likes and you will allow it? In your shoes, I would be asking a LOT of questions - of her AND yourself - and re-evaluating your marriage so that, if you do choose to stay together, this does not happen again.

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A female reader, Dionee' South Africa +, writes (11 November 2017):

Dionee' agony auntHonestly speaking, if you hadn´t found out about the affair then it definitely WOULD have continued.

The fact of the matter is that the only reason she seems to still be with you is because she was given an ultimatum and why would she leave a marriage of convenience where she is still being loved and treated to vacations and treated exactly how a faithful wife would be treated? No one in their right mind would give that up.

That´s not to say that she´s right in this situation because she sure as hell isn´t but she carried on an affair for 3 whole years not once thinking ¨how would my poor husband feel about this? Wouldn´t this hurt him and isn´t this selfish?¨. She clearly didn´t care enough about your marriage to stop this affair on her own. She liked playing both sides and getting away with it. You´ve basically crashed her fun ride and forced her to land on a decision that she clearly would have never cared to make otherwise.

Now, you have got to ask yourself some questions here. Do you think it´s worth it being with someone who can lie straight to your face for years? because that´s what she´s done. All the intimacy and time spent together was a lie because how many times must she have been counting down the minutes, hours and days until she would get to be with HIM again?

There are few things that are forgivable in my opinion and infidelity is not one of them in my book. There´s just too much that goes into actually cheating that bothers me. You aren´t just giving your body to someone else, but you give them air time in your thoughts and emotions... it´s just too much for me and you need to decide if it´s too much for you because if her affair could have lasted for 3 years then she is obviously attached in some of the ways to this other guy that she was initially attached and attracted to you. This wasn´t a ONS, it was a 3 year relationship (if you will) and that is saying a whole lot right there.

Personally I wouldn´t trust a word that anyone who can cheat on me for 3 whole years can say to me after the fact but you need to make up your mind as to whether or not you trust her anymore. If not then you really need to consider what your options are.

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A female reader, holeymoley Australia +, writes (11 November 2017):

holeymoley agony auntWhen you are as cunning as her i suppose it would be easy and over three years i guess even easier because it became the norm. I agree with Honeypie, 3 years (1095 days) is NOT a mistake by a long shot, it was a deliberate and well executed deception. Do you really doubt it would have ended had you not found out, probably not which is why this was not a' mistake' at all. Affairs are wounds that never quite heal, no matter how much therapy you go to. The cheater is a constant reminder, there is no escaping that if you stay together and the trust you never get back entirely. Its a horrible state of mind to try live in for months or even years to come. Trying to deal with it is usually internally because the cheater likes to move on quickly and without much accountability or understanding of the recovery process for the hurt they have caused. All you end up with is what they want you to know anyway so again you are always left wondering and hyper vigilant while they slither through life happily sweeping it under the mat. Move on if you can.

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (11 November 2017):

Honeypie agony auntShe said she was sorry...

I think she IS sorry. NOT because of what she did HURT you and killed the trust in the marriage but because she got CAUGHT.

Are YOU really sure you want to stay married to someone who spends 3 YEARS making a "mistake"? that isn't a mistake, that is a BAD BAD choice.

Giving her an ultimatum didn't make her see the "light" and the "error" of her ways. It made her realize that the home and good things she has with you would go away. She chose to dump the "lover" so SHE doesn't look bad in the eyes of family, friends, and co-workers. So she picked YOU.

You really have to decide if this is a deal breaker or not for you. Even if you at first wanted her back and to forgive and move on... IT might not be what you want in the long run.

If you DO decide to stick it out with her, I suggest you two seek some SERIOUS marriage counseling.

If it was my husband who did what your wife did? I'd end it. No, if's, ends or buts. It would be OVER. I don't think most marriages can recover after a 3-year affair.

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A male reader, TylerSage United States +, writes (11 November 2017):

TylerSage agony auntWomen tend to cheat when there is an emotional disconnect in the relationship. Do you think there is anything that has changed since you two have been together? It also seems that you guys are pretty young. This could be a determining factor. Maybe your wife hasn't done all she wanted to do and been with everyone she wants to be with.

I think she only "ended" it because she was caught. She doesn't seem to respect you very much. Mind you, that could be message she's trying to pass on to you. Everyone deserves a second chance. Try some counselling and work on trying to trusting her again. If she seems to not care so much I think you should move on. You're still quite young.

All the best.

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A male reader, PJ Roy American Samoa +, writes (10 November 2017):

Right now, you must be feeling like *everything* you've ever believed in has always been a lie.

If you keep wondering how can she do this, why would she do that... the 'game' will be playing you. If we want to stand a chance of getting ahead of the game, then we should instead look at, What is it that *can* happen in this life we live?

Right this moment:

- Somebody is being killed for a fight over 20 cents,

- A baby is being thrown out the window of a speeding car,

- A lifeguard is diving to his death into the ocean thinking he's able to rescue his dog,

- A father is learning that stage 4 cancer leaves him only weeks to spend with his children,

- A 20-year 'friendship' ends because they wanted to experiment with closer intimacy,

- one moment an African child is selling bread, and the next a missile from an unmanned drone is killing her,

Life does not know about our concepts of fairness, justice, morality, love, faithfulness, trust, betrayal... Life is only concerned with creating more Life, any form of Life, no matter how 'vile', aka Life is tasked with perduring.

There is no one-size fits all model that all 7billion inhabitants of this Earth can... live up to. Hence, your wife, and her actions that you cannot understand at the moment.

Remember: keep ahead of the game.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 November 2017):

Her behaviour in having an affair was very unfair and unfeeling towards you .However as you have decided to forgive her and try and works things out I am sure you have lots of questions you may want to ask your wife on this matter.So would you consider have a long chat with your wife asking these questions and not let them fester in your mind and making it more difficult to trust her again.Ask her to be frank with you on why she cheated on you in the first place...this chat would need to be calm and cool,both people helping each other to understand.If for some reason you feel you cannot conduct this chat in a calm manner,then maybe you might suggest you both would see a counsellor with a view to helping you both for the future.Kind regards NORA B.

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A male reader, Billy Bathgate United States + , writes (10 November 2017):

She is selfish and immoral. And you, well you are still with a woman who would betray you and your marriage without a second thought.

Just a question. Are you sure it has ended?

Good luck you’ll need it.

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