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Home / My Man

I can’t persuade my family to forgive my cheating wife



Dear Coleen

My wife of 10 years started having emotional troubles two years ago.

One day, when she was asleep after staying overnight “with a friend”, her phone beeped with a text, so I checked it. I found that she’d been with a man the night before and had been texting and calling him under my nose for weeks.

As hard as it was, I decided to let her go, and she admitted she didn’t love me any more and went to live with this guy.

I moved out with our three kids to stay with my parents so they could help me. Then my wife suddenly she decided she wanted us back.

After two months of counselling and fighting, I moved back into our home with her and our kids. During this time, she told me that she had been abused as a child but hadn’t dealt with it properly.

This all came to the surface after the funeral of a close family friend who had molested her for seven years, and this is her explanation for her actions.

She didn’t think I loved her and that I only wanted her for sex. Which isn’t true.

She now wants to pick up the pieces of our broken family, but my family is angry at how she has treated us and how her affair hurt me.

They won’t let her attend family events for fear it would be too awkward, and it’s hindering our progress. I feel like I’m stuck in the middle.

My family won’t give her a chance. I’ve said we won’t visit if she isn’t allowed to come, but I just get the response that they won’t be blackmailed into accepting her back.

I’m stuck and I don’t know what to say or do. How do I persuade them to allow her another chance?

Coleen says

Your family love you and have seen the pain you went through, so of course they won’t find it as easy to forgive her.

You love her and have a history with her, as well as lovely kids together.

You’re being governed by your heart, whereas your family are just thinking logically about the situation - she’s hurt you before and they don’t want her to do it to you again.

Anything like this is going to take time and you can’t force your family to love her or accept her back.

However, it’s your life, you don’t live with your family, and you have to do what’s right for you and your kids.

I’m not condoning what your wife did, but after hearing her reasons, I think she does deserve another chance (obviously she can’t use that excuse again).

If she’s never dealt with the abuse, then she needs professional help to work through it.

Hopefully, as time goes on and if your family can see things are working out and the kids seem happy and you are too, then they’ll gradually accept it.

As much as they think they shouldn’t be held to ransom, neither should you.

Maybe it’ll be down to your wife to talk to your family – she can tell them she understands their reasons for not trusting her any more, but ask for another chance to prove she’s sorry and that she wants it to work.

You can’t not try to repair things with your wife just because your family don’t want you to.

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