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Posted by By: Dr. Laura Berman on November 22 2018
Dr. Berman - I just wanted to comment on a caller from yesterday named Mary, who, after having been married for 33 years, discovered that her husband had had several affairs and was feeling as though her entire life was a lie. I was in that very same position. I was married for nearly 18 years and my husband confessed to having an affair only weeks after we'd been married. I was ready to leave him then, but he begged me not to, insisting he would get counseling, which he did for the next couple of years. I, like Mary, assumed the problem had been taken care of. About fifteen years later, I stumbled upon photographs of a very young woman and discovered my husband had supposedly fallen in love with an online phantom young enough to be his daughter who he was convinced was his soulmate. I was devastated, and again wanted to leave him, but at that point had two children and solid roots in our community. So I did everything I could to keep the family together, including three rounds of couples counseling, just like she did, I finally got the courage and strength to get rid of him for good. Though at the time it felt like the worst nightmare imaginable, it was the greatest thing I ever could for myself and my children. My very strong advice to Mary - RUN! But first, plan it out, get some support, and find an understanding divorce attorney experienced in addiction and narcissism, as I did. Your life has not been wasted, and I'm sure you have grown in many ways during the marriage, as did I. Your husband has some very serious issues, probably none of which you are responsible for. Your life will improve drastically if you find a good therapist and deal with what I imagine is post-traumatic stress disorder. Since my split, I have found true love, grown my business, and gotten in the best shape of my life. What has happened to you is a blessing; even though it doesn't feel like it now, you will look back and be grateful beyond belief. Lisa
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