My wife Amber waited for me as I walked through the door from the garage. Looking around the kitchen I didn’t see any pots or pans on the stove or smell the tell-tale aromas of dinner cooking. I noticed that the oven was cold, dark, and empty. I found it strange that Amber didn’t have dinner started. We never went out on Friday as we had reserved it for family time. Saturday evening is our normal date night where we go out for dinner and sometimes drinks and dancing. Yet Amber was undressed and, in her robe, something she usually did before she got ready for a night out on the town. The house was unusually quiet. I said, “Where are Jimmy and Amy?”
“They’re upstairs doing their homework.”
“Are we ordering in pizza or have I forgotten something?” I asked, in a quandary as to what is going on this Friday evening in the Evans household.
“You can order in anything you want.” Amber said with ambivalence.
“Well what would you like my dear? Since you do most of the cooking I can order in or I can whip us up something while you relax with a glass of wine.”
“Alex, I won’t be here. I’m going out tonight.” Her voice gave away her excitement at the prospect.
“Who’s watching the kids and where are we going? It won’t take me long to get ready even though we’re moving date night up a day.”
She gave me a look of determination though her face revealed a bit of trepidation as well. “Alex, to answer your questions, you are staying home tonight and watching the kids. I didn’t move up date night but I’m going on a kind of date with Jonathan Winters. We will still have our date night, tomorrow.”
I felt like I had just been hit by a bus as I stood there and looked at my wife with utter disbelief. “What do you mean you are going on a date with another man?” I felt my anger rising with every syllable.
“Just what I said. Jonathan has been after me every day at lunch to go out to dinner and dancing with him and I finally said yes. He is picking me up at 7pm. We are going to the Oak Room and then to the Starlight Club.”
“The HELL YOU ARE!” I screamed as my voice rose to a dull roar. What on God’s green earth made you think that I would ever be comfortable with agreeing to my wife dating other men! And you’ve been meeting this asshole for lunch every single day?”
“Jonathan is a nice guy. He is new to town and he doesn’t know many people and I befriended him and we have lunch! Big deal!”
“An occasional lunch with a colleague happens. With members of the opposite sex, it shouldn’t be just the two of you and most certainly, not every damn day Amber!”
“Oh Alex, grow up! Jonathan said that you would be a real asshole about this and I told him no, my husband is reasonable and doesn’t have a jealous bone in his body but I was wrong.”
“Amber I’m not jealous. What I am is your HUSBAND! I expected from you a sense of loyalty and fidelity that includes not running to the arms of some would be lothario just because he’s nice. I’m sure he told you to ambush me with this rather than sitting down and having a reasonable and rational discussion. You both planned on and decided to blindside me so any objections on my part would be discounted and ignored and passed off as jealousy as if my concerns had no validity!”
‘NO! You need to call this “nice guy’, a guy “nice” enough to hit on married women and looked to make their husbands a cuckhold.” I let the sarcasm drip off the word nice.
“For the sake of our marriage, call him and tell him you must cancel. I’m not going to idly stand by while my wife starts dating!”
She said, “You don’t own me or my body!”
I looked her straight in the eyes as I replied, “So, you’ve decided to fuck him then!” I screamed. “True, I don’t own your body. However, you did explicitly state that I had sole use and rights of said body when you uttered ‘forsaking all others until death do us part’, you remember, our wedding vows? Taken in front of God, family, and friends?”
“Honey, she said taking an unctuous tone, it’s only dinner and some dancing!”
“First of all, you’re lying through your teeth. Secondly, you’ve lost the right to call me HONEY! Lastly, not just NO but HELL to the NO! There is no way I’m going to stand for this! Call him and cancel immediately! He has used these “innocent” lunches to stalk and systematically seduce you. I’m sure he has belittled me insisting that I’m someway ignoring you and your needs, that I’ve mistreated or abused you in some way. I’m sure he told you that I’m undeserving or unworthy of your love, trust, and respect. Come on Amber you’re smart enough to see through this!”
“I’m going to out with a friend and that’s all. I need to shower and get dressed. I’ve made up my mind and I deserve to have a night out without you trying to control my every move!”
With that she stormed off heading for the shower. I heard her slam the door to the bedroom. This conversation, hell knock down drag out, isn’t over by a long shot. So, I flew up the stairs and went to open the bedroom door only to find it locked. I heard the shower running through the wall and I went to get the key to the door I kept in my desk for emergencies. I returned and unlocked the door. I saw her LBD, lacy black push up bra, and matching panties from Victoria’s Secret laid out on the bed and her “come fuck me” pumps beside her dress. On her vanity I see she has a tube of bright red lipstick and her bottle of Xanadu perfume ready to be applied.
I try the bathroom door to find that it is locked as well.
I knocked and yelled, “Amber open this door!”
Nothing. Suddenly a plan forms in my mind. I headed to my closet and got out a suitcase and packed myself some clothes for the weekend. A couple of suits, ties, and work socks and put them in my garment bag. I also packed her dress, undergarments, and shoes with my stuff. I carried the bags downstairs and put them by the door. I grabbed my running shoes and a jacket and sat them with the bag.
I got out my phone and called our babysitter Kelli and told her that if Mrs. Evans called her to sit tonight or tomorrow, to tell her she is busy. I told her that I will pay her double her rate for 8 hours each day. She told me that she is truly busy as she needed to study for a major math test on Monday. Then I phoned my Mom and told her not to answer any calls from my home phone, Amber’s cell, or the kid’s cell. I explained the problem and I got her word that she won’t take the kids from Aber or answer the phone. If Amber showed up, she promised to tell her that Dad is “sick and contagious.”
I knew that it would be next to impossible for Amber to find another sitter on Friday evening on such short notice. I went up and talked to my kids. I saw that they were frightened as they heard Amber and I as we screamed at each other. I said, “Kids don’t worry! Mom and I had a disagreement over something. Kid’s, I must go out of town for work due to an emergency but I will call you every night. Amy don’t let your Mom use your phone, if she thinks to ask, tell her you left it in your locker at school. Put it on vibrate because I will call you before bed. The house phone will be temporarily disconnected but I will turn it on before I leave. Just call my cell if you need me for anything and be good for Mom until I get back, okay?” They nodded and I kissed them on the forehead, they hugged me and through tears they promised they would.
I returned downstairs to the living room, rummaged through her purse, and removed her cell phone and her car keys from her key ring. I also took our spare set. I texted the asshole pretending to be Amber and told him he was right about Alex being upset and being a jerk. I told him I would meet him at the Oak Room at 8:15pm. He texted back okay. I told him I needed to get dressed and that he should shut off his phone because Alex got his number and might try to call and harass him. He agreed and telling “me’ that he couldn’t wait until “I’ was in his arms dancing close. I decided to keep her phone as well so I put it in my pocket.
Without a sitter she won’t be able leave the house since I now planned to leave before she finished dressing. I grabbed my stuff and headed out the door. I disconnected the phone line before I got into my car and backed out of our driveway. I drove around the block before I parked down the street from my house in my friend and neighbor, Jerry Hallstead’s driveway as he and Helen are on vacation. I sat patiently as I waited for “Mr. Wonderful” to realize he has been had. I used the time waiting to make a reservation at a nearby motel.
He’ll turn his phone back on and call Amber’s cell and when he doesn’t reach her, he’ll take off for here under the guise of worrying that I hurt her or someway held her against her will. Forty-five minutes passed by before I heard a strange ringtone on Amber’s phone. I let the call go to voicemail. Having failed to reach her he then sent a text. He wrote, ‘U ok? Did the asshole hurt u? I’m on my way.’
The text was sent at 9pm. It is a fifteen-minute drive from the Oak Room to our driveway. I noticed that Amber came to the window several times and looked out no doubt she wondered why the asshole was so late. With three minutes to go I called my daughter on her phone and told her to call her mother up to her room saying she isn’t feeling well. Amy said she would and it would be the truth.
I saw Amber leave the window, so, I started my car, pulled out of Jerry’s drive, and drove my car across my driveway so the asshole couldn’t pull in. I got out of my car and pulled out one of my daughter’s softball bats from the trunk. I stood in the shadows behind my car and waited. Right on cue the asshole came flying up my street and parked side of the road when he saw that the driveway was blocked.
He jumped out of his car and started around my car heading for my front door when I stepped out of the dark in front of him with the bat in my hands. “YOU Jonathan?”
He takes a step back saying, “I am! I came here to make sure you didn’t harm Amber!”
“Thank you for your “concern” for my wife’s well-being! Too bad it stops short of doing irreparable harm to her marriage, injuring her kids, and destroying her family! All for a strange piece of ass!”
“Let me see Amber now!” he said with a bit of false bravado.
“Listen asshole, you are trespassing on my property! She is with my children because they are ill after overhearing our argument about you and the end of their parent’s marriage. She is not leaving with you and you are not going any farther near my home or my family! I’m telling you to leave now or I’ll phone the police and have you arrested!”
“You may stop me today but I will see her at work Monday. She wanted to go out with me. Your nothing but a jealous prick!” he says with smugness and a smirk as if trying to goad me into assaulting him.
“In case you haven’t got the point SHE IS MARRIED! Perhaps she did want to go out with you, since you wormed your way into her mind actively seducing her by undermining and belittling me at your “innocent” lunches. You have her thinking and seeing unclearly but you don’t fool me at all. All you want to do is sleep with her. You don’t give a fuck about the collateral damage you leave behind in your wake–my children, my wife, after your done using her, me and our family, the life we’ve worked so hard to build!”
“You probably got your rocks off humiliating me but how you can in good conscious know what you are doing to my children and our family. That’s monstrous. I’m on to your little game so get this, you’re not leaving with or furthering your seduction of my wife tonight or ever. if I’ve anything to say about it!”
“By the way, smile, you’re on “candid camera” as I pointed to my security cameras. “I have them zoomed in on us and recording every word and deed for posterity and evidence. Now for the last time leave and don’t return or I WILL have you arrested for trespass. Am I perfectly clear?”
“Fuck you!” he said as he turned and headed back to his car. I watched him pull away and I got in my car and followed him to make sure he didn’t double back. Assured that he left the area I went back and parked at Jerry’s until I saw the lights go out. I went back to the house and reconnected the phone wires. It was now 2am and I was confident that asshole wouldn’t call risking me answering the house phone.
I headed out to my room and settled in for the night. I wanted to get a bottle of bourbon and get plastered but I knew I needed to keep my wits about me. I undressed and took a long hot shower. As the hot water cascaded down my worn body and the steam engulfed me, I hoped that it relieved some of the stress I felt. However, the shower failed to work its usual magic. I dried off and crawled into bed and hoped for but knew that sleep would not be forthcoming.
Alone with my thoughts as the adrenaline finally subsides, the pain overtook me as I lie there and wondered what would make my wife fall for this asshole’s line of bullshit. If something was amiss than its news to me. Until this evening I never had a hint of a problem. Over the course of the night and early morning I made some decisions. If she sees this asshole, then we are through.
I decided that I needed to find out everything I can about one Jonathan Winters. Unlike the late comedian of the same name, this guy isn’t one bit funny. I checked him out on social media and I found that he is married with two children. His wife Melody and kids are still in Chicago. I assumed they planned on joining him at the end of the school year in 60 days or so.
I paid for and did a background search and I discover that he left his last two jobs, abruptly. I needed to call these firms and see what I can find out come Monday. I got his address and phone number in Chicago. First thing in the morning I called my boss Dan Jenkins and told him I needed some time off due to a family emergency. I gave him some of the details and he told me to take whatever I needed. I told him a week no more than two.
I guessed the trip to Disney World is off. The kids will be disappointed that is unless I can resolve my problem before the end of the week. I grabbed a quick shower and cleaned up before I headed to Molly’s Diner for some breakfast. I got back to my house at 6:45am and I disconnected the phone wires again.
I waited at Jerry’s until 7:30am before I entered the house and got my kids. I grabbed some clothes for them and told them to stay quiet. I got them dressed, down the stairs and into my car. I took them out for breakfast while I had more coffee. After breakfast I took them to my parents and asked them to keep the kids for a couple of days incognito until I can get things straightened out with Amber one way or another.
I got back in my car and drove back to my house. The time had come for us to come to an understanding. I pulled in the driveway, got out and headed back into the house. Ambers in the shower. She’s unaware that the kids are gone. I took her phone out and called asshole. “Amber?” he answers.
“No asshole, it isn’t Amber. If you know what’s good for you then you better stay away from my wife. Don’t call, don’t come by. That’s unless you want me to have an interesting chat with Melody! I’m sure that she, Jon, and Jason will be extremely interested in how her husband and their father has occupied his time in Pittsburgh since he arrived.” When I stopped talking, I heard an audible gasp followed by utter silence. “Now that I have your attention you better hear and heed my words of advice asshole!” I disconnect the call.
I got up and made a pot of coffee and poured myself a steaming mug full of the life sustaining nectar and took a huge gulp. I heard Amber in the bedroom so I poured a mug of coffee with cream, two sweeteners, and yellow packet stuff for her while I topped off my mug yet again. I took the coffee to the table and sat down and waited for her to descend the stairs into the kitchen,
Her eyes widened as she saw me sitting there. Before she got a word out, I said, “SIT DOWN AND DON’T SAY A SINGLE FUCKIN WORD!” I saw the dark circles under her eyes that were red and puffy from crying as she sat down, a bit frightened, as I normally never ever used such a tone with her.
“I wanted to begin by apologizing, not for what I said, but the way that I said it. Until last night, I never raised my voice or issued any type of ultimatum to you and for that I’m sorry. When you made the decision to carry on with that asshole, and gave me an ultimatum, I felt backed into a corner. That’s no excuse but it’s what happened. She started to speak but I put my finger to her lips, “Please let me say what I have to say then I’ll listen to you, but not before.”
She nods in the affirmative. “Amber, since we started dating and throughout our marriage and with our children, I’ve always done everything within my power to take care of my family. I protected all of you, provided for you and I treated you with the love and respect you deserved and I expected the same in kind. I deserved it and I dare say I have earned it during the past 14 years and 12 years of marriage.”
I see tears streaming down her cheeks as I continue, “Last night you failed to give me any kind of respect, failed to show me any type of mercy and you tore my heart out. With your words, your actions and intended actions you cut me to the quick. I spent the entire night wondering what horrible thing or things I could’ve done to you for you to behave the way you did.”
“If something horrible or inexcusable on my part exists, then I’m clueless as to what I did that made you decide to date another man while we are married. I know we discussed in depth and detail what fidelity means to me and you agreed way before I asked and you said yes.”
“I’ve always took my wedding vows seriously! I’d never ever try to pull on you what you did on me, EVER! In turn, I expected you to honor your commitment to me as well. Anything short of that then we are through! I don’t want our family broken apart but I’ll not live with a woman that is less than 100% committed to us, to our relationship nor will I allow a stranger, a usurper into my marriage.” The tears have given way to sobs.
“You have to decide that if a little fling with “Mr. Wonderful” is worth your marriage and your family. With something that important you better be sure you have all the facts. Did you know he has a wife and two children in Chicago? That they are waiting until the end of the school year before joining him? If you don’t believe me look him up on Facebook.” Her eyes widened.
“Yes, if you two decide to continue then your actions will cause a great deal of pain and suffering to our children, Melody, his wife, and their children and our collective extended families, friends and colleagues. You both need to ask yourself if it’s indeed worth all the carnage.” I took and breath and continued,
“You’re right I don’t own you. You’ve already cheated on me by having an emotional affair and it’s just as big a violation of my love and trust, just as big a betrayal and lack of respect for me as if it were physical, and I believe it would have been last night.”
“I did horrific things in to stop last night from happening. I took your phone and keys, called our sitters to prevent you from leaving the kids, and I waited and confronted that asshole outside our home. I wanted to give us both time and hoped that you would see what’s happening from my perspective and hopefully listen to reason and have a civil discussion about things with me. It’s not my finest hour and I’m not proud of my actions. I resented having been so desperate as to have said and done what I did last evening. I hope upon hope that you will come around but frankly my faith in that happening has faded with each passing minute.”
“I, directly and you indirectly, involved our children in adult issues. I’m beside myself with guilt for that. If that continues then neither of us deserve our sweet, innocent children. I for one won’t let that happen again. So, from this point on its all on you, you decide or both of you decide what the future holds for us, them, for all of us.”
“As you know I moved out last night. This morning I have taken the kids to my parents. I’ll leave your phone and keys here. The kids will stay with Mom and Dad for a few days unless you decide to go get them. If the two of you decide to date, fuck, whatever, just don’t do it in this house, in my former bed or ever in front of our kids.”
“You need to think long and hard about the future. I’m going upstairs to get the rest of my things and I’ll be out of your hair. I’m finished and as soon as you have your say I’ll be leaving. I’ll stop by Mom and Dad’s and tell them what’s happened. I’ll tell them to take your calls and that you’ll let them know when you’re ready to pick up the kids. I’ll explain things to them. I can’t bear to hurt them any further than I already have when I lost my temper last night. I’ll carry that with me for the rest of my life. Again, I’m sorry for doing that to them and to you.”
Amber cried uncontrollably for several minutes before collecting herself to speak. “Alex, I want to say I’m sorry. I don’t know what came over me. I’m sorry for hurting the kids and hurting you. I’m sorry for not talking with you instead of at you, sorry that I gave you an ultimatum and backed you into a corner and I’m sorry for being a hurtful, narcissistic idiot. I’m extremely sorry that I cheated on you in anyway, you do deserve better, especially from me. I love you and I don’t want you to leave! PLEASE FORGIVE ME!”
“Amber, I love you with every fiber of my being. If I didn’t, it wouldn’t hurt so much. However, it’s not that simple. I can’t wrap my head around any of this. As I said, you need to make some hard decisions. If you cut bait with that asshole perhaps there’s a chance that with counseling you can understand why you did this to us and only then can we work on our problems, work toward repairing our relationship and eventually forgiveness. You have my number.”
I got up and went up the stairs grabbed and filled my garment bag and another suitcase. When I came back down the stairs Amber was crying hysterically. It broke my heart that I couldn’t muster up the courage to console her in her time of need but the hurt was too great. Walking out the door was one of the most difficult moments of my life and something I would forever regret.
On Monday I checked with asshole’s two former employers and it seems he left under a cloud of suspicion both times for inappropriate behavior with female subordinates and colleagues. I scheduled a meeting with Don Gordon, Amber’s boss and when I went to my appointment, I found out that Amber called in sick. I also learned that the asshole was in the office.
I laid out everything I had. The lunches everything. “Alex what do you see happening here?” Don asked looking concerned.
“Don, this isn’t your fault or the companies and I’m not looking to cause a problem with some bullshit lawsuit or will I ask Amber to file a sexual harassment suit either. They’ re two consenting adults although Winters has a track record of suspicious behavior in that regard. I don’t want his family hurt by virtue of him losing his job either.”
“Don, all I want is the two of us to have a “come to Jesus” moment with Winters. I want either him or Amber reassigned to a different department and have it explicitly stated that they are not to have any contact during business hours or ever work together again. However, I think that he should have to bear the brunt of this professionally. Is that doable?
“Alex, that is most assuredly doable. Simone, have Jonathan Winters in my office now!”
“Yes Mr. Gordon, right away!”
It took Winters about five minutes to arrive and Simone announced his arrival. Don told her to, “Send him in!”
When Winters saw me sitting there his jaw hit the floor. “You wanted to see me Mr. Gordon?”
Don replied, saying, “Winters sit your ass down and listen up. Mr. Evans has brought me up to speed with the events of this weekend past. You’re new here so let me spell out for you how things work around here. You stay away from married women in the workplace and you don’t harass the single women here either. Are we clear?”
“Yes sir!” he said sheepishly.
“Good! You can thank Mr. Evans that your ass isn’t completely out the door. He has shown your wife and children far more concern and respect than you have with your actions. It is on his recommendation that you remain employed here.”
“Effective immediately you will transfer to the West Avenue office and begin training with the sales team. You will remain at your current salary for the two-week training period and then it will be adjusted to base plus commissions. So, I suggest you put that silver tongue of yours to work toward earning a living for you and your family! Any questions? No, good! Alex, anything to add?”
“Thanks Don. Winters if you adhere to the rules laid out by Don, I’ll forgive the events of this past weekend and the lunches where you actively seduced my wife. I have one question; did you have any and I mean ANY physical contact with my wife? That includes hugs, kisses, touches, fondling, oral, anal, or vaginal intercourse.”
“Alex, I mean Mr. Evans, I held her hand as we walked and during lunch. I touched her arm and cheek and gave her a quick peck on the cheek after our lunches and on the lips after lunch the last two times we went.”
“Winters listen and listen to me good. If you ever go near or speak to my wife ever again, your wife finds out about what happened here and in your last two places of employment. I’ll give her enough evidence to bury your ass forever. My friend Don will fire you as fast as a cruise missile and forget about getting another job in the field. Picnics, Christmas parties, just stay far away, are we crystal clear?”
“Think long and hard about your actions and what the consequences your family may suffer as a result. You need to come to the realization of how badly you will hurt them if you continue with your pandering ways. That is the only reason I haven’t called your wife and the only reason you still work here. However, if I find that you engaged my wife in any way I will be forced to destroy you and your family to save mine, understand?”
“Yes Mr. Evans.”
“Winters, Don added, report to H.R. immediately, complete your paperwork and clean out your office and report to the sales department before noon. That’s all.”
“Yes sir.” As he slinked out tail tucked Don and I had a good laugh at his expense.
“No problem. Tell Amber to take the week off with pay and it’s not charged to her vacation. Take my godson and his sister to Disney as planned! I’ll give Dan a call. He and I golf weekends at the club. I’ll see to it you get the same deal as Amber so you can spend the week getting your collective lives in order.”
“I’ll suggest that we both sponsor you for membership at the club and the dues be included in your benefits as a perk of your new office. See I know you’re getting that promotion to vice president, Dan told me yesterday. But don’t let on I told you and spoil the surprise. I’m sure he will be impressed with the way you’ve handled this situation.”
“It demonstrates to me that you have the negotiation skills and patience necessary for the job as well as compassion, aplomb, and leadership qualities. Hell, if Dan doesn’t treat you right, I may poach you and I’ll let him know that too. Now get out I’ve work to do!” he said with a wink and chuckle as I got up and went out the door.
I didn’t even know I was being considered for the position little lone getting it. It’s a shock to say the least. I left his office with a better grasp of things. Now I just need to find out where Amber’s head is at. After I got into my car, I called her. Amber, can we talk?”
“Oh please Alex, come home. I’ll never see him ever again. I’ve got an appointment to see a counselor Wednesday.”
I told her that, “I spoke with Don and you have the week off with pay. I’ll tell you all about it when I get there.” She was crying softly as I told her I’m on my way.
I moved home that afternoon mostly to reassure the kids that we were still a family. When I arrived at the house, I picked up Amber and we went to get the kids and took them out for pizza. After we put the kids to bed, I told her of my meeting with Don and Winters and what resulted from it. I told her I forgave her but inside I still held onto some resentment for what she did and tried to do to us.
It took a year of individual and couples counseling to get our lives back on track. I went back to sleeping in our bed and I held her every night and comforted her during times where her emotions got the better of her.
We made love but I still had some uncertainty as to whether she secretly held resentment toward me for interfering in her relationship with that asshole or if she wondered what she had missed when she made love to me.
Our counselor, a psychiatrist, Dr. Karen Ruland was an excellent clinician and helped us both tremendously. She was recommended by our first therapist because she correctly recognized Amber’s depression and would need medication to treat it.
She admitted to Dr. Ruland that she was depressed at the time Winters started flirting with her. She was honestly trying to be a good co-worker by befriending him and it was therapeutic for her when they talked over lunch.
His charm and personality made her feel better and she bought into his line of B.S. She couldn’t identify anything within our relationship that caused her to be that vulnerable. She came to realize he was looking to start a sexual relationship with her but didn’t see it as such at the time she befriended him.
She admitted that it was possible that she may have been charmed into sex but she was adamant that it wasn’t planned and she believed that she would have resisted any such overtures of that nature. She also admitted that she was wrong to agree to going out with him in the first place. This was done in her one-on-one sessions.
Dr. Ruland helped me to understand the intricacies of depression. She also explained that it was a convolution of circumstance that led Amber to make the choices she made and that Jonathan Winters happened along at a most vulnerable period and exploited it to his own gain. She taught me the warning signs to look out for in case the depression returned. She also prescribed Amber anti-depressants and kept her on as a patient and adjusted her medications from time to time.
In our joint sessions we ashamedly admitted our roles in causing our children and each other so much pain and how sorry we were despite their resilience and quick return to normalcy. Dr. Roland gave us credit for recognizing this early on and admonished us to never let that happen again. Despite Dr. Roland’s reassurances that we did no lasting hurt or damage to the children, I carried my guilt for quite a while. I don’t know how Amber feels or felt about that aspect.
I also told Amber of my guilt for failing to overcome my pain and comfort her when she was in so much pain that long-ago Saturday. She told me that she didn’t remember that only that she knew she hurt me and didn’t want me to leave her.
She did tell me that she held no fleeting thoughts about her relationship with Jonathan Winters. In her mind she was just trying to be a good co-worker and friend and felt used. She never wanted to see him ever again. It took a while but I eventually believed her and my resentment and doubt slowly but completely evaporated.
Eventually, with a great deal of compassionate therapy we made it all the way back. Something I never envisioned when it happened.
Many of you may wonder why I didn’t go for the jugular with Jonathan Winters or burn my wife at the stake. Had I done so, I’d subjected his wife and their children to the searing pain I felt at the time, something I wouldn’t wish on any innocent parties. If he lost his income or they knew about his philandering would do just that. Also, how would he explain losing his job so quickly without his wife asking a lot of questions?
As for Amber, I love her with all that I have. I felt that in the end the loss of our family and the pain and suffering of our children would be more than enough. She is and always would be the mother of my children and for their sake, I couldn’t in good conscience cause them, Amber’s family, or anyone else more than the bare minimum amount of pain than was necessary. Call me a wimp if you will, that’s how I thought about it, felt, and thus I acted in accordance with those beliefs. I’m comfortable with my decision to work to save my marriage and most of my decisions made that weekend except for hurting my kids and putting them in a painful situation.
Our love is stronger and our bond is now tighter than it was before. I’m always on the lookout for complacency creeping in and we work on communicating every day. I love my wife and my life. I appreciated what I nearly lost, and, I’m thankful for having it every single day.