My husband says he cheated because of pressure

By Nguyet Hang   April 5, 2023 | 10:27 pm PT
My husband and I dated for 8 years, have been married for 5, and now have a lovely 2-year-old baby.

We are both 32. My husband was originally from the North but now lives in the South. I’m from the Mekong Delta.

We’re both office workers and our salaries are about the same. He’s a kind, considerate and devoted family man, so many people admire him. However, our marriage faces many obstacles.

While we were dating and planning to get married, we faced opposition from his family. His mother is the head of the family so every decision must go through her.

She told my family that I’m past the prime age for giving birth. She also said I live too far away and it would be too costly to travel between our two places. She said her son should marry someone younger who lives nearby.

His mother said she would only allow him to marry someone from his hometown, despite the fact that I have a good education and earn more than him.

I feel like my family and I are being looked down on. I hesitated, but my husband kept begging me to marry him. I eventually relented and agreed. This is when the real conflicts began.

We live 400 kilometers away from his parents and we only visit during the summer or for the Lunar New Year holiday. I’m a straightforward but sentimental person, and I’ve never told a single lie in my life.

My mother-in-law frequently compares me with her daughter, who often lies. She tells me to not be dishonest, even though it’s only her daughter who lies.

My husband’s mother likes to show off in front of people. She tells other people she gave me many things, but she never really did. She interferes with every aspect of our lives. She shouts at us if we disobey her. My husband loves his family too much to argue with them, or even voice his own opinion.

I’m sick of this marriage but still love my husband very much. He’s a decent and kind-hearted man who cares a lot about his family, and because we don’t live with his family, I decided to stay with him.

He goes drinking three to four times a week and came home drunk each time. I begged him to cut down on his drinking to protect his health and safety. Now I don’t even bother doing that anymore because he refuses to change. He now drinks and goes out even more, spending less time with our family.

I play with our child as soon as I get home from work while my husband goes out to drink with his friends. He’s thoughtless and doesn’t care about my feelings, but I hold it all in.

I’m extremely disappointed and want to go our separate ways. Outsiders always think that we have a happy and peaceful marriage because we rarely fight.

Recently, he’s been on his phone much more than usual, sometimes until 1 a.m. I have always trusted him so I didn’t think too much at first. But then I accidentally read his messages with another woman.

I felt like I died inside – I couldn’t believe he would betray me like that. He said he couldn’t forget her and said some very sweet words - things he never said to me. He hid his messages with a password so I couldn’t access them.

I pretended I didn’t see anything and acted normal even though I was hurting a lot inside. The man I put all my trust in betrayed me. He has been having an affair with that woman for more than 2 months.

She’s a coworker but I have been too ignorant to realize it. She knows that he has a family. He cares about her and spends time talking to her and buying her gifts. I have no idea what I did to deserve this.

Before the cheating, I’d brought up breaking up with him several times. But he always begged me to stay together. He said he loved me and our child, then went ahead and cheated on me.

I think everyone makes mistakes, so I gave him a chance to repent. I didn’t make a big deal out of his betrayal, but I did ask him how he could treat me like this. He said he was under too much pressure from his family and from work, and that his coworker cared about him.

He said he caught feelings for her as time went on but assured me that it was only a fling. I didn’t really trust him and I wanted to talk to her. My husband said he was willing to quit everything to stay with his family because he loves us very much.

He asked me for some time so he could make up for his mistakes. I agreed, but my heart has gone cold. I will make my own decision. I’m scared that my child will suffer because of a lack of affection from both his parents.

But I will try my best to compensate for it.

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