Trying To Get Your Husband To End His Affair Or Choose You Over The Other Woman? These Tips Might Help
In a perfect world, as soon as you found out about your husband’s affair, he would fall over himself apologizing and outlining how he was going to banish the other woman from his life. He would make promises to make this up to you, regain your trust, and ultimately to save your marriage.
This isn’t the reality for some women though. Sometimes, the husband isn’t sure if he wants to end the affair. For whatever reason, he sometimes isn’t sure if wants to let the other person go. Sometimes he is honest and forthcoming about this and sometimes he isn’t. Some men will tell you that they are ending the affair when they really aren’t. It won’t be until later that you find out that they’ve continued to carry on with the other woman as though nothing has changed.
Many wives, quite understandably, become very frustrated with this situation because they feel a huge lack of control. Many want to save their marriages (despite their husband’s behavior) but they aren’t sure how this is going to be possible when he refuses to end the affair. Many ask me how they can force his hand so to speak and get him to let her go once and for all.
I often hear comments like “how can I get my husband to end the affair? The other woman works with him and he sees her every day. He just doesn’t seem willing to let her go, even though he says he still loves me and isn’t ready to end our marriage. She seems to have some pull over him that I can not figure out and over come. But I’m not sure how to play this. Part of me wants to give him an ultimatum, but I’m afraid that if I did this, he’d simply walk away. Is there anything that I should be doing or that I shouldn’t do?”
In the following article, I’ll discuss what I consider to be the things that you shouldn’t do (and want to avoid) when you’re trying to get your husband to end the affair, come back to you, and save the marriage.
Why You Don’t Want To Give Your Husband Either / Or Ultimatums: I know that this is usually the first card that the wife will want to play. This is very tempting because if you tell your husband that it’s her or you, then the idea is that he will HAVE to make a decision – and hopefully he will make this decision very quickly. Many wives want to sit him down and tell him that he has a set deadline to decide if he’s going to go with the other woman or stay with the wife. The wife will usually stress that once this decision is made, there is no going back. She’ll tell him that he has to decide and he has to decide right now.
Believe me when I say that I understand the logic behind this strategy. You are trying to force him to come to a decision and you’re hoping that your history with him (and the decency inside of him) will mean that he chooses you. However, this isn’t always what ends up happening. Sometimes, rather than allowing himself to be forced or rushed into making a decision, the husband will just tell the wife that if this is the line she’s drawn in the sand, then he’ll have to bow out. Often, he just isn’t sure what he wants and being forced into making up his mind seems like a worse alternative than indecision.
I often hear from men in this situation who say things like “my wife demanded that I chose between her or the other woman. At the time, my head was messed up, I was confused, and I just didn’t know what I wanted and so I chose the other woman simply because my wife wouldn’t give me any more time. We aren’t together anymore. I wish I had chosen my wife but she wouldn’t give me any leeway. Perhaps if she had been a little more patient, we would still be married today. But the ultimatum actually made things worse.”
Now, by saying this I certainly don’t mean that you should allow your husband to have a relationship with both you and the other woman. This isn’t acceptable either. But the compromise for that would be to tell your husband that you can’t have an intimate relationship with him while he still has a relationship with the other woman. This just isn’t acceptable to you. While he is having a relationship with her, then your relationship will certainly not be an intimate one. However, when he comes to a decision and hopefully decides that he wants to be with you and only you, then those circumstances might change.
Resist Trying To Elicit Negative Feelings In Your Husband (Like Guilt, Shame, Or Embarrassment:) As a wife who was cheated on, I suspect I know what you’re feeling right now. I know that you find your husband’s behavior absolutely deplorable. I know that you think he should be ashamed by and guilty for his actions. And I also know that it’s very tempting to point this out to him, especially when you’re trying to convince him to give her up.
Many women will try phrases like “how could you do this to our family?” Or “look at you carrying on like an insecure old man in the middle of a mid life crisis. When are you going to return to reality and realize that you’re betraying someone who has always been there for you and has loved you for more years than you care to admit? You are jeopardizing everything we have worked for because of some passing phase with some low quality tramp.”
And he may well deserve to hear this. These phrases could and probably are true. But, the thing is, he doesn’t want to hear this when he is so unsure about himself. He likely hears this in his own head coming from his own voice. He may not show the guilt and shame he’s feeling, but deep down, it is very likely there. But if you keep trying to make him feel even more badly about himself, he is likely to associate this negativity with you and it could affect his decision as to whether to end the affair.
With All These Don’ts, What Can I Safely Do To Get Him To End The Affair?: Admittedly, you can not control his feelings and his actions right now, but you can control your own. You can take the high road and work on your own well being and recovery right now. And you can take a look at the statistics about affairs lasting (the odds aren’t very good) and know that if you bide your time and paint yourself in the most flattering and dignified light, you will often win this battle.
But sometimes, you have to give it a little time and you have to allow him to come to these realizations himself. Many men do come to realize that they acted in stupid and embarrassing ways and they are sorry. But if you try to force these realizations on him before he comes to these conclusions himself, he may resent or even distance himself from you when this isn’t what you want.
I know that getting your husband to end the affair is probably just one difficult issue you are dealing with. But hang in there. Healing is eventually possible and it’s worth it. Although I never would’ve believed this two years ago, my marriage is stronger than ever after my husband’s affair. It took a lot of work, and I had to play the game to win, but it was worth it. Because of all the work I did on myself, my self esteem is pretty high. I no longer worry my husband will cheat again. You can read a very personal story on my blog at http://surviving-the-affair.com
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