There was another Other Woman? I’d dreaded finding one, but never in my wildest nightmares had I expected to find two.
The affair with had O started whilst he was living in Singapore. I’m not sure if it coincided with when we lived there as a family (between 2010 and 2012), but it was certainly going on during the year he’d was living there on his own (because of financial problems – caused by him not paying his taxes – he’d had to stay on in Singapore whilst the kids and I moved back to the UK). Once he’d moved back to the UK, I’m guessing they kept in touch (and presumably met up on his trips back to Singapore and at least one trip to Almaty).
But, I’m guessing that, as he began to accept that a long-term move back to Singapore wasn’t going to happen, O began to seem a little too distant, because in 2015 receipts for flower orders began appearing in his email for someone a little closer to home – P from London.
I assume that this other, Other Woman, P, is also an ex-student of his (although I’m not sure), she’s certainly done the exams he trains students for and is now working in the same industry as him.
There was very little about her on his laptop (again, everything will be on his phone), but, thanks to a thief who nicked his brand new phone on the train home one night, they’d had to resort to talking on Linkedin for a few days (P is something of a woman of mystery, she doesn’t appear to have any social media accounts, just a Linkedin profile – so, without texting, that was the only way they could communicate). Reading the exchanges explained the constant late nights and the fact he was SO upset when his phone was stolen. I do wonder what the thief thought when he read E’s messages (and potentially saw his photos – I have no idea if his phone contained any but going from what he was happy to keep on his laptop, I’m guessing his phone would not have been a pretty sight), I almost feel sorry for the thief.
I initially assumed that poor O had been ditched for the closer-to home, and much more convenient, P. But then I found another email, written in August 2015, in reply to an email O had sent in July. At this point, E had been seeing P since at least January 2015, and (somewhat impressively) was on holiday with me and the kids playing happy families (I was so happy on that holiday).
From the email O had sent, it looked like E had stopped communicating with her in June (she’d apparently been expecting him to come out to Singapore to see her in July). She didn’t say much, but from what little she did say, E had told her that ‘his family didn’t need him’ and she was clearly hoping for a future with him. She didn’t realise he’d actually stopped communicating because he’d found someone a little easier to access.
Rather than apologising, or explaining that he was on holiday with me, or even mentioning that he’d now met P, his reply actually tried to keep her as his girlfriend. He lied about my Mum’s recently diagnosed illness, saying it was ‘terminal cancer’ not the still devastating secondary, but treatable, cancer diagnosis she’d actually received, and saying that a long-planned family trip to Durham was a last minute trip arranged as her ‘last chance’ to see us all (for the record, I’m glad to say my Mum is still here and still fighting that bastard cancer) to try to explain his silence towards her. He then finished his reply saying that he was expecting a financial settlement from work soon (a financial settlement that, at that very moment I was doing everything I could to support him in achieving) and that he hoped he’d be able to use that to create a future for them.
I still can’t work out which one of us he was being unfaithful to at this point. Was he being unfaithful to me with P and O, or unfaithful to O with P and I, or even being unfaithful to P (keep up) with O and I? I’m confused just thinking about it.
To be honest – no matter what my personal feelings re his infidelity – I’m actually quite impressed that E managed to keep up the deception for so long with so many people. Frankly I have trouble remembering my kids’ names most days – I’d be totally pants at infidelity.
So. There I had it. Pandora’s Box was open and I couldn’t ever ‘unknow’ what I’d discovered.
Usually (as anyone in my family will tell you) I love being right – but I would have given anything to have been wrong on this occasion. As a wise woman once said, “one affair can indicate a problem with the relationship, more than one usually suggests a problem with the person”.
I knew that this would have to be it, that, even though I’d managed to forgive and excuse the two earlier affairs, that this was too much and that I couldn’t stay in this relationship and maintain any self respect. On top of that, even if I forgave him again, he’d obviously do it again.
I’d also picked a bitch of a time to find this out, my Mum was in hospital and I had thirty people coming to my house in just four days to celebrate Oldest Daughter’s 18th (E was ‘working’ all week and wasn’t coming home until gone midnight every night – I knew why now – so I had no back up and had to sort everything myself), Christmas was also looming, I had presents to buy, a massive family get-together to organise. I was also completely and utterly financially dependent upon E, there just couldn’t have been a worse time for my life to implode.