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Would you tell your dying husband that you don’t believe his denial of an affair

(23 Posts)
Nanamar Sun 21-Feb-21 14:11:43

A dramatic opening, isn’t it? My husband of 50 years is in the last stages of lung cancer. In 2006 on Feb 16th - yes I know the exact date - I confirmed my suspicions that he was having an affair and confronted him. He acknowledged it. He was not very helpful in terms of rebuilding our marriage but also wasn’t interested in ending it. I went to counseling myself and we managed to save our marriage, albeit I feel I did most of the “work.” On Feb 16 2021 - yes exactly 15 years later - a man wrote me a letter saying in 1996-97 my husband had an affair with his wife. He claims that he got conflicting info from her at the time but recently he confronted her again and she confirmed the affair. His details - my husband’s age, his car, etc are spot on. I read the letter to my husband who denies the affair despite acknowledging that this woman - who worked with him - had some contact with each other at work and outside of work since she requested some assistance from him (he was a teacher and she was studying to be one). I frankly am not sure what to believe. Why would my husband acknowledge the 2006 affair but deny this one? The timing of the earlier affair, however, “fits” in my recollection of what our marriage was like at the time (some issues). He has nothing to lose by acknowledging it - I will be by his side easing him from this life no matter what. But I feel entitled to the truth. This man and woman live literally a mile away - I know their address. I wrote to the man explaining that he and his wife are accusing a dying man of something he denies and that clearly someone is lying. I’m inclined to believe this happened - leopards and spots, etc. My question is do I tell my husband that I don’t believe his denial?

Blossoming Sun 21-Feb-21 14:16:52

I would question why this man and his wife have chosen to write this hurtful letter now. Is their intention to inflict worse pain on somebody who is losing a loved one?

vampirequeen Sun 21-Feb-21 14:17:02

What's the point? If he says 'no' you won't believe him. If he says 'yes' you'll be even more upset.

Just make the most of what time you have left rather than bother about something that happened years ago.

Namsnanny Sun 21-Feb-21 14:18:27

I have no advice for you, but I wanted to say how sorry I was that this has happened. flowers
I'm just wondering why the cuckolded husband would write now ?
You have a lot to think about and in sorry I can't help.

Smileless2012 Sun 21-Feb-21 14:44:40

Oh dear Nanamar. If you tell him you don't believe his denial and he continues to deny this affair, what then? Would it not be better to let this lie?

Nonogran Sun 21-Feb-21 15:01:33

Maybe the other husband has current issues with his wife/marriage so behind his closed door he's venting & dragging you into it? I'd stay out of his issues. In your shoes I'd carry on caring for your husband (with dignity and fortitude) and sadly, when he's gone, maybe get counselling to deal with the emotional aftermath if you feel it might help you move on? I anticipate your emotions are going to be complex. A denial or an admittance now is neither here nor there. It's literally nearly over whatever he says.
Sending peaceful thoughts to you both as you face, so sadly, what is to come.

crazyH Sun 21-Feb-21 15:07:10

Oh my goodness - your husband is dying - why on earth would that man bring it up now.
Please spend the time you have left with him, in peace. Leave well alone. flowers

Hetty58 Sun 21-Feb-21 15:08:09

Why stir it up now? Does it really matter? Allow a dying man some peace!

Oopsadaisy1 Sun 21-Feb-21 15:10:33

Exactly, why would he deny it?
And TBH what good will it do anyone to keep questioning him?

eazybee Sun 21-Feb-21 15:12:32

Leave it alone.
It sounds as though you are caught up with a jealous husband browbeating his wife into admitting an affair from twenty-five years ago; you don't know that he is telling the truth about his wife. Your husband's explanation sounds feasible; accept it.
In the face of his impending death it is unimportant.
(and have no further contact with the man who wrote to you.)

TrendyNannie6 Sun 21-Feb-21 15:13:12

Totally agree with Nonogran, really feel for you Nanamar

Katie59 Sun 21-Feb-21 15:18:14

In your heart of hearts you know he had the affair, you stayed, why dig it up now, so no I wouldn’t.

NellG Sun 21-Feb-21 15:18:59

I'm inclined to agree with the others. What good will it do? You already know the truth, your husband could be a weak man. There's no new truth, and even if this affair did happen it pre-dates the one you forgave. Will it change anything for you? You will still be nursing and eventually grieving a fallible man - but one you chose to stick by.

Or in some way, do you feel it will help you cope with his death more easily? A way of emotionally stepping back and buffering yourself form the inevitable? Not judging, just asking you to ask yourself these questions.

I also agree that this other man is a piece of work and you do not want to be on his drama bus.

Ultimately you will have to live with who you chose to be during this very difficult time, my advice is to choose well. best of luck and best wishes. x

Nanamar Sun 21-Feb-21 15:22:57

Thank you all for your thoughts. I have decided to say nothing else about it to my husband and simply accept that I may never know the truth nor does it matter now. Given that we continue to reside in the same town as this husband and wife, they will most likely learn of my husband’s death whenever that occurs. Clearly this man has been plagued with doubts and sadness and he called my husband some pretty awful names in the letter. He will most likely be happy to hear that he is near death since he obviously bears very ill will against him - always easy to blame the other guy. I can be rather a pit bull when it comes to seeking information (probably should have been a detective) but I know when to give up. I don’t like what this man did but I’m not a mean person and hope that he eventually finds some peace since I will also be seeking every possible way to find my own. Thanks for your kindness.

Flakesdayout Sun 21-Feb-21 15:36:05

Firstly I think it is such bad timing for this man to write this letter and Im not sure why after all this time he would want to. Secondly, knowing what I would be like, I think I would want to know, just so I could file it away. It may be that it is a mistruth and your husband is in fact telling the truth. This other woman might be saying these things to get a reaction from her husband and having your Husbands details would be evident if she was working with him but not necessarily an affair. I would think that at this stage in your Husbands life there would be no point in him lying. Let him have his last days in peace and try not to dwell on it. I do wish you well Nanamar.

Ngaio1 Sun 21-Feb-21 15:58:54

I wish I had had the courage to tell my late husband what I really thought of him before he died. I was too scared he would leave me entirely out of his will. As it was, he had done some financial dealing so that I did not inherit all that was there. When I spend on luxury items now I think I made a wise decision!

sodapop Sun 21-Feb-21 15:59:07

I think you are doing exactly the right thing Nanamar there is nothing to be gained by pursuing this. I hope you and your husband find the courage and peace of mind to face what is to come. thanks

GillT57 Sun 21-Feb-21 16:08:25

If this other man knew about your husband's current state of terminal illness, then he is beyond vile and disgusting to write to you. If he is not aware, then he is still to be avoided at all costs for he wrote to you, not your DH, with intent to hurt what could have been an innocent party. He has problems, his wife even more so for she is married to him. Put them out of your mind, believe your husband, or not, it does not alter the facts, just look after this flawed man who you love, and who loves you. So sorry you have had this awful episode in what is already a difficult time.

timetogo2016 Sun 21-Feb-21 17:18:38

I agree with Katie59.
And remember your dh knows you know the truth and maybe
he will come clean himself.
I would question why you received the letter tbh.
If it were me i would make a visit and ask.
The other woman has possibly come clean as her h has found out your dh isn`t the first or the last quite possibly and he is hurting and wants to hurt someone else.

eazybee Sun 21-Feb-21 17:19:36

I think you have made the right decision Nanamar, and I am sorry that you have to cope with this on top of your husband's terminal illness.

grandmajet Sun 21-Feb-21 17:25:38

I have just seen this thread Nanamar, and I think you have absolutely made the right choice. You have evidently had some bumps in your married life, as have many of us, but have chosen to be together until now. You will have peace of mind by doing the right thing by your husband.
I wish you well.

poshpaws Sun 21-Feb-21 17:38:46

Nanamar you've absolutely made the right decision in my opinion. Showing any doubt in your husband's denial would be cruel. He admitted to one affair: at this stage he had nothing to lose if he'd admitted to a second, so in any case I'd tend to believe him when he denies it. I wish you strength and courage in this awfully difficult time, and hope your husband's passing is as peaceful as the doctors can make it.

lemsip Sun 21-Feb-21 17:43:33

it's too late, what good would it do...He would die distressed, would that be alright with you!