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Can my marriage work after my husband had a 4 month long affair

Community Member

We have been married for around 10 years now and just last week I accidentally discovered that my husband had a girlfriend on the side. When i confronted him, he confessed straightaway and said it was a fling, he had zero attachment to that woman and that its over. He says he was dissatisfied with our marriage physically and needed that sexual release, hence had a fling. It is true that we were not having much sex in the past few years. Offlate he had started to hang out more with single guys and used to stay in his mates bachelor pad overnight on weekends as well.

I found out that he was lying to the woman he was sleeping with. He did not tell her he was married or that he lived in the suburbs either. She thought he is a single guy living in a city pad(his mates apartment).

He says he wants to work on our marriage but is it worth it? We do not have children and i am not financially dependant on him either so a separation will not be messy. But i am conflicted…. should i move on. Should i swallow the bitter pill and give him another chance?

Do marriages come back after these episodes?

14 Replies 14

We all wish for things. In your case wishing for trust to return. Wishing isn't realistic.

Reality means finding real answers and not taking criticism.

You'll be OK, have faith, life can work out, with determination and seeking your worth.

H is trying to place blame on you. A relationship means discussion and many more things


Yes, classic case of gaslighting isnt it. He says it was just a fling but i am going to speak to the other woman ... i am sure he would have conned her to believe in an alternate reality that he had created for himself.

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi Viki8420,

I can imagine how you must have felt to discover your husband’s secret girlfriend, and I’m sorry you’ve been put in that position. There are some things that are a positive, he confessed straight away when confronted so you didn’t have to drag it out of him, although your evidence may have been irrefutable. And then there are some troubling negatives, he kept up a level of deception both to you and the other woman that showed a general lack of respect. If he just wanted a physical release, I think I almost would have understood more if he’d seen a prostitute, although maybe that’s me. The fact that he blamed his dissatisfaction with your sex life also wouldn’t sit well with me. The frequency with which we have sex constantly fluctuates depending on a number of factors, children, illness, etc. You want to be able to go through rough times and have your partner beside you helping you rather than having an affair because his needs aren’t being met to his satisfaction. I have also been ill for the past 6 or so months and my partner has organized a night out just us so that we can reconnect. We haven’t had sex in quite a while either but there are other forms of intimacy aside from sex and if you are treated lovingly and respectfully it makes it much more likely to happen. Rather than turn towards you and try and maintain intimacy I feel that he just turned away and didn’t give you the opportunity. I may not be aware of the full story but it just feels a bit callous to me. How would you say your relationship was during this period aside from the lack of sex? Were you getting on otherwise? Or was there arguments, emotional distance etc?

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello Vicki, 'just a fling', well it goes much deeper than that, it's not like he just wants it and then goes, the two of them talk and discuss issues, may be about their own family and whether the truth is told doesn't matter because the two of them are talking behind your back and that's broken trust.

Your health problems, I'm sorry you have them, but no one could possibly predict this was going to happen, because you marry 'for better or worse' and only wish people would take these vows seriously, however, even if he does stop this affair, you don't know what this other girl will do in order to try and get him back and cause havoc for all of you.

You want him to tell you honestly how he feels, but if trust has been broken, then you have to decide whether or not to believe him.

My best.


That Other Guy
Community Member

I see you already have a bit of advice but I feel like I have enough experience to weigh in

My wife had post natal depression and we didn't really have sex for 10 years. I can confirm that for me, absence of sex made me miserable. However, I will also say I never considered cheating, which doesn't mean your husband is evil, just we are different. In hindsight I blame myself more than her but at the time I was young and stupid and just knew the sex had disappeared.

My wife recently had sex with someone else, and I was heartbroken. I got very drunk, cried a LOT, and seriously wondered if I could stay and why I would. The answer in the end was that she's hurt me, and regarded me as unimportant but I love her. I love her with every fibre of my being so I said I'd stay if we did counselling, and we did, and it got to some stuff that had been pretty much hidden for 28 years, and things now are a lot better.

So why do you want to stay? Because no matter what he did, you still feel you love him. My advice is, you have the power in this situation, you're the one who was wronged and can choose to leave. What I did in that situation was insist on counselling and it really helped, it could help you. He needs to understand that you're hurt and that won't go away overnight. He can't expect you to resume sex right now in order to 'keep' him. If he wants to stay together, he needs to ride out your pain with you, listen to you, and work on things. Conversely you'll need to have an open discussion about how he's felt but also about how much you struggle with his communication style and that if he feels something he just needs to tell you.

Good luck!! For me, this happened 3 months ago and it feels like a lifetime, things have got that much better, that quickly.