You've seen celebrity clinical psychologist Dr. Sherry Blake, author of The Single Married Woman: True Stories of Why Women Feel Alone in Their Marriages keep the Braxton sisters calm on the hit show, Braxton Family Values. Now it's your turn to sit in her chair...
Hi Dr. Sherry,
My husband had a stroke and I found out that he was having an eight-year affair. His family knew about the affair. We have been together for 30 years and we’ve been married for 22. We have two grown children. I haven't told my children. I feel that it's not their business to know about our marriage. I found out about his affair about six months ago, but I can't get it out my mind. He wants to work it out and he says he can't see himself without me. I love my husband and want to stay in my marriage, but I 'm having a very hard time with this.
I 'm hurt and embarrassed by his family going along with the affair and knowing the other woman. Some days I don't want to work it out. I cry when I'm by myself thinking of the affair. I'm angry that he lied to me for so long and I'm angry that I let it go on for so long. I knew things weren’t right when I asked him if he was he having an affair and he always said no. I found out about his affair through a text. When I called her, she didn't answer. She sent me a text instead of calling me and talking to me about it woman-to-woman. I just want to know if you can give me some advice on how to get though this. Thanks Dr. Sherry!
This may not be the time for you to watch Tyler Perry’s movie “The Dairy of a Mad Black Women”. I know you are angry and upset but most of all you are hurt and feeling totally disrespected by him and his family. Eight years is a long time for an affair and for his family to have a role on any level. Keep in mind that you have been married to your husband for 22 years not to the women he was having an affair with or to his family. As horrible as you may feel, they do not owe you anything. This is really about you and your husband. It appears that your marriage has been in trouble for a long time. You did not make the decision for him to have an affair and you cannot decide for him to end it or to change his behavior. You are not responsible! So, stop blaming yourself. There is no doubt that he would like to work things out now that has been caught and he has had a stroke. The question is not what he wants but what do you want? I recommend that you seek individual therapy to process your feelings so that you can make a clear decision. If you decide to remain in the marriage, I highly recommend that you both seek marital therapy. When you have been emotionally wounded, it takes time to work through issues in order to heal. Your self worth is not defined or determined by your husband. If you want happiness, you must find it deep within.
- Dr. Sherry
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