||I married too young at the age of 18. I know now looking back that I married because I was scared to be alone for the rest of my life, and I was reasonably content in my relationship of three years. He was just your normal guy--sweet, a little insecure, but very much in love with me. There were never any warning signs at all, and he was just so happy to have me. I remember thinking no one might ever feel that way about me again.
We drifted apart as the power dynamic in our marriage changed two years in. I was in college and got a great job while he struggled to find his place. I changed majors, interests, goals, and flourished...I was still developing as an individual. He was not ready for these changes. We grew apart. We started living more like roommates than spouses. There was evidence that he had been involved in at least two "affairs" although I did not know the extent of them. We fought about them with no resolution, so I disconnected completely, focusing on my career to avoid the problems at home.
In my loneliness, I met a guy at work and we had an instant connection. We became friends, but it just kept escalating. Eventually, we carried out a two-month affair. I felt so horrible the entire time. I started going to individual therapy. I knew what I was doing was wrong, so I ended it, even though it was extremely painful for both of us. I waited a couple weeks after we had stopped communicating, and then told my husband the truth. I had decided in therapy that I could not work on our marriage if it was built on lies, so I thought I was doing the right thing.
After a lot of prayer and rehearsal, I told him, and I was astonished at his reaction. He said something along the lines of, "don't you think I ever have temptations? why do you get your fantasy but I don't?" I was an emotional wreck; I had planned for the worst, but never this. He said that he wanted his fantasies--the ones I had denied him in the past, that it was only fair. In his anger, he demanded sexual acts from me that I had always refused. I was so confused and alarmed and worried that he would leave, I just did what he said.
He told me that he wanted me to arrange a threesome with one of my friends, as he had asked me to do before. Each time he had asked before, I had responded in horror. Since it was not something immediate, I just agreed with plans to refuse later on. I was too scared to say no. He then made it evident that he wanted to work on the others. As I put my mouth on him, the tears started streaming down my face. He forced my head down violently, gagging me several times, although he knows that I hated to be pushed on when I am giving him oral because I feel degraded.
He then had me bend over and began putting lube on my anus. At this point, I was wailing. I could feel him tracing the outside of it, just hanging over me, waiting. To my surprise, he stopped. I don’t know if he just felt too guilty or if there was another reason, but I was so grateful. I always expressed my distaste in anal sex after we had tried it a few times, and never let him do it after the first couple times. Instead of being mad he was doing this at all, I was relieved at this small mercy.
Since I was too upset to have anal sex, he had me turn over and began to try to finish on my face. The tears poured and poured. I have always told him that he could come anywhere except my face, because it makes me feel disrespected. I finally screamed at him, “why are you doing this to me?!” when I couldn’t stand it anymore. It was like he woke up in that moment and realized what he was doing, finally just rolling over and crying.
In the aftermath of the incident, I was so concerned about saving my marriage that I buried what had happened. I didn’t want to think about it. After all, I had had an affair—I had betrayed him terribly. There was a part of me that was almost glad he did it because I deserved it so much—in a sick way, we were even now. He had never laid a hand on me before, and he didn’t really go through with a lot of it; he did not “finish” at all, so nothing really happened, right? As the memories surged back, I pushed it away. Why was I so upset about this? I felt guilty about my feelings, because so many women are truly beaten and raped and their partners do not respond to their cries for help at all when they have done nothing wrong. My husband was in a dire situation. He reacted out of a survival instinct. I must have just been whiny.
One year of therapy later, I am still not over it. I have confided it to my therapist, two friends, and two different hotlines, seeking help. Of all of those people, only one friend and one hotline supported me unconditionally. Even my therapist tried to explain away his actions as a result of extreme emotional reaction. I realize that he was in a terrible state, and for that I am and always will be sorry. When I tried to discuss it with him, he would try to minimalize or dismiss it and use my affair for justification.
I know that affairs hurt, but I do not believe they hurt worse than this. I cannot reconcile the man I have been in a relationship with for seven years with the man that was in my bedroom that night. I am still trying to work on our marriage, but I would rather have his confession that he slept with someone else than do that to me again. I thought that I was doing the right thing in confessing to him—now I wish I never had. I wish I had kept it to myself like he kept his “affairs” to himself, even today. I feel like I will never know the true extent of those relationships because that is how he deals with things—burying them as far down as they will go.
I felt like my soul had literally been crushed by the most intimate person of my life. It was not an offense against our marriage—it was an offense against me as an individual. I have tried moving on; I have tried forgetting it. There are times that I am happy—as long as I specifically avoid thoughts about it, but I cannot think more than a couple months ahead at a time. Talk about the future sends me reeling because I still cannot commit 100% to a life with this man that I do not even know that I know. It has been a year now, and I don’t know if I will ever get over it.
I am a social worker who would read all sorts of issues into this situation, and tell a woman with my story all sorts of statistics that I choose day after day to deny. I know what they say about one-time incidents. He has admitted his fault nine months after (the first time without minimizing), and he has said that he has no reason why he lashed out at me in that way—that his world was falling apart and he just reacted. He still hasn’t come to the point where he admits that nothing ever justifies it, but I hold onto a small hope that maybe that is coming.
In the past year, he has been very loving and supportive as we have tried to put things back together. But there is always this nagging voice in the back of my mind saying, “there will be a next time”, “you will never get over it”, and “you can’t really love someone who has done something like that to you.” So I am torn, taking it one day at a time, until I decide what is best for me. This website has brought me a lot of peace, because I no longer feel crazy to be so affected by what is happening to me. There are many strong women here who have endured much more than me, and their hope inspires me. Thank you for the opportunity to share.