Unfortunately some of these tips, while valuable, may be a little late, because to be effective in an affair situation they needed to be implemented before you discovered the affair.
Living in a world where you believe that your relationship or marriage is forever, where there is no betrayal or change, where people don’t die or become disabled, is living in a world where you are divorced from certain realities.
Anyone in a relationship can find that they are rocked to their core when disaster or challenge knocks at their door. Lack of preparedness to live alone, self-sufficient, and able to cope financially can add considerable pressure, stress and upset to someone whose partner has an exit affair.
… one should strive to be more or less packed and ready to go were the end call to come.
~ Alain de Botton
Since this article was written for women specifically, I have some advice for women specifically, in the form of an unattributed quote:
A woman should have enough money within her control to move out and rent a place of her own, even if she never wants to, or needs to.
If you find that your partner exits your relationship as a result of an affair, struggling to find the means to move out of the home (or pay for the one you’re in), or the funds for a divorce lawyer, or even the money to feed the children can add another layer of crisis (and yes, it’s not at all uncommon for a cheater to walk out on their partner, leaving them financially unsupported). It’s hard enough to deal with the emotional turmoil without having to worry and fret over basic finances.
Financial freedom allows for greater options and independence. Don’t underestimate your need for separate and sole access to your own funds.
13 Tips for Wives With Cheating Husbands
by Ruth Houston (edited)
Dealing with the emotional turmoil of a husband caught cheating can take all the energy out of you. But instead of being a helpless victim, use the following tips to help you take action on the problem and regain control of the situation.
You don’t have to continue to be a helpless victim if your husband is cheating on you. There are practical steps you can take to make the best of a bad situation. Whether you decide to stay with your cheating spouse or leave him, the resolutions below will help you put the odds in your favor, so you can gain the upper hand.
1. Make sure infidelity is actually the problem you’re dealing with.
Problems like drug or alcohol addiction or gambling often masquerade as infidelity because of similar telltale signs. Don’t speculate, investigate.
2. Face reality.
Ignoring your husband’s infidelity will not make it go away. It will only make things worse. He could become so attached to his mistress that it will be impossible to get your marriage back on track.
3. Speak up and take a stand.
If you know he’s cheating and say nothing about it, you’re enabling his infidelity. Make it clear that you disapprove of what’s going on and tell him you want it to stop. Not addressing his infidelity makes him think he has your silent approval or that you don’t know what’s going on.
4. Let him know you know.
Affairs thrive in secrecy. If you’ve identified numerous telltale signs and have solid proof of your husband’s infidelity, decide when and how to tell him you know about his affair. Sometimes just knowing his infidelity has been exposed will be enough to make him stop.
5. Build a support team.
You need someone to confide in about your husband’s infidelity. Don’t try to get through this alone. Surround yourself with people who care about you and have your best interests at heart.
6. Realistically evaluate your situation.
Consider your options. Is your marriage worth saving? Should you get a temporary separation? File for divorce? What is it in your (and your children’s) best interest to do?
7. Seek counseling for yourself and for your marriage.
You have a better chance of saving your marriage if you get professional help. You’ll be better equipped to deal with the trauma of infidelity if you seek individual counseling, as well.
8. Identify the underlying issues.
Try to pinpoint the contributing factors to his infidelity - A life crisis? Major character flaws? Dissatisfaction with you or with the marriage? Or something else? Get to the root of the problem, if you can.
9. Protect yourself sexually.
Your husband’s infidelity can have life-threatening consequences for you. If he’s having an affair, your health is at risk. You’re already a victim of infidelity. Don’t become a victim of an STD too.
10. Find out your legal rights.
Consult an attorney who specializes in matrimonial law. Get a clear understanding of what you’re legally entitled to (alimony, child support, division of marital assets) in the event of a divorce or separation.
11. Put your financial house in order.
Get a realistic view of your current financial situation and make the necessary adjustments. Establish credit in your own name. Set up a separate checking or savings account. Start putting money aside for a rainy day.
12. Make sure you’re equipped to earn a living.
Many women remain in adulterous relationships because they’re financially dependent on their husbands. If you need to, take college courses or start learning a trade to make yourself employable.
13. Prepare yourself mentally and emotionally.
Accept the possibility that your marriage may end. Don’t be caught off guard. Have an “Infidelity Game Plan” in place in case your husband decides to move out or ask for a divorce. Begin formulating your strategy now.