I noticed a message on my phone and checked the voice mail. It was a message from my sister-in-law, Husband’s brother’s wife.
Brother’s Wife and I have been good friends over the years and have gotten closer, as have Other Brother’s Wife and I. I realized when BW called, something I had forgotten, and that is that I have been avoiding talking to BW and OBW, as well as Father-in-law since discovery of the affair. At first, it was okay, because I was in shock, for starters, and who knows what other insanity was bouncing around inside my head, but as weeks went by, I deteriorated and although I miss them, terribly, I haven’t been able to call them because I feel so…unable to be myself. I’m very resentful that H has created this mess and now it’s in my lap to deal with, affecting my relationships with people I love. The understanding has been his family doesn’t need to know. Just having lost H’s Mom, it would be terrible. Everyone is already heartbroken and this is an unnecessary twist.
My dilemma: I want to be close to my sisters-in-law, but it’s painful because I feel….tense and phony. I’m not used to keeping unsavory secrets. I’m hoping some genius solution will rise to the surface which will not involve slapping the stuffing out of my husband.
He did tell me one day that I could slap him, but I told him I would only hurt myself and besides, it’s just wrong.
Not everyone knows everything about me and why do I want to tell them except to “punish” him? That doesn’t feel right. I guess I feel like the only way to avoid making a mistake is to keep on avoiding everyone, which feels like being in exile, but I think it feels worse to try to talk to people and not feel distant. None of them would press for details, like my baby brother, who demanded to know why I was “off” when he called me and was even accusatory about my not being open with him, but therein lies the difference. Anyone who is demanding…I just don’t comply with and I told him in several ways on different occasions that I had any intention of discussing it once I got weary of the interrogation and told him we were having difficulties.
Maybe the safe route is to tell her that things aren’t great. They’ve been worse, which means they are better even though it doesn’t feel like it, sometimes.
I find it ironic that my doctor tells me to avoid stress, yet…well. I guess we don’t always get to choose what kind of a storm we live in, like people in Haiti. At least I don’t live in Haiti.
what a dilemma… I remember one of my H’s affairs (we have been divorced for a long time now) was with my brother’s wife, who, at the time, I thought was my best friend. The four of us were all very close as well as all of the kids (cousins). When this all came out in the open it blew up the relationship between my brother and I, the 4 of us adults no longer got together for fun things and therefore, all of a sudden the kids (four cousins) no longer got to be together like they had been either… it was a mess. so I can understand how your feeling… I don’t have any great words of wisdom since being open with everyone doesn’t seem to be in the option list. I just have a question for you, which of course, you are totally free to completely ignore, but, is there any difference between enabling an alcoholic by hiding the reason for his odd behavior from everyone and enabling someone to avoid the consequences of his behavior of having an affair by hiding what happened from everyone… when is it more important to put his feelings about being found out before your need to access your support system, i.e., your sister in laws…
One other thing that I found out after my situation was all over and done, was that 3 out of the 4 brothers in my husbands family all ended up having affairs. I just happened to be the first one that it happened to.
best of luck!