What Is Wrong With Me?

Question: Dear Luise: I don’t know how to cope with the infidelities of my husband. We come from two different cultural, religious backgrounds with a 13-year age gap (he is older) and have been together for 25 years. I hate the fact that he is deceiving me all the time and the constant lies. I want resolution to this issue and want to leave but keep coming back. Why? What is wrong with me? (I know I love my husband and we have an 11 year old.) I know I am smart (although he will try to twist, blame me for everything) but why am I not moving on? Why? I can’t get my head around to what is holding me back. M.

Answer: Dear M.: Loving someone and being able to live with that person, can be two different things, especially someone who cheats on you and then puts you down to build himself up. How much of your love is being returned in a tangible and respectful way?

Some women manage to live with infidelity, knowing that their weak and unkind husbands love them on some level. The trick is to find peace in that solution. For most of us, (yes, I have been there), being conflicted regarding whether to stay or leave is natural. Your husband’s not all bad and neither is your marriage. On top of that, you have a young child. No wonder you’re vacillating.

You are probably weighing the good that would come to you if you left against the harm that would come to your child, especially if your husband is a good father. You describe some major areas where the two of you are incompatible, as well. There isn’t any perfect answer.

All of this spells the need for counseling from my point of view; both of you if he is willing, or you on your own if he’s not. What you are experiencing at present can cause a lot of stress and stress can cause serious physical and emotional problems. It’s time to get some professional help so you can take the best action possible and then stick with it. Blessings, Luise

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