Three months ago my husband left me for a woman he'd been having an affair with. He came back within a week and told me he'd been abused, and also told me that he'd seen the abuser four years ago and since then had been visiting prostitutes.
He'd kept the secret of the abuse for forty years, and now its out in the open he's crying a lot, almost like having a breakdown.
I've been helping him get therapy, and doing research about the effect of abuse in men in later life, but I still feel betrayed and jealous, especially of the woman he had an affair with. He said it started because he just wanted sex, but all the kissing and cuddling ignited feelings in him and he thought he was in love with her. The affair lasted a couple of months, but he finished it and came back home and hasn't had any contact with her since.
Whenever I have sex with him now it brings up all these feelings of hurt and betrayal, despite the fact that he claims if it wasn't for the abuse he would never had done any of it.
I could sort of cope with the hookers because there was no emotion attached to it and he was repeating the abuse. With the affair he said he wanted to 'give her pleasure' when having sex.
He says he always really loved me, and still does and desperately wants to stay with me. But part of me still thinks that if he'd really loved me he wouldn't be able to hurt me this much.
How can an affair be part of 'acting out' the abuse?
I'm really mixed up. Help.