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Secret Loss


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Three years ago, my Husband of 15 years turned into a monster. Constant verbal abuse, stalking, harassment all because I caught him cheating (again). I was done. My children were no longer babies, and I couldn’t forgive him again. He lives in this house and he helps pay these bills and that’s it. I had recently met some people, and one in particular was there for me. He checked in on me daily, he made me smile when I was sobbing, he sent me silly things just to cheer me up. We texted a lot, talking about everything and nothing and i’ve never laughed more in my life than I did with him. It’s why I never saw him coming, he’d worked his way past all my walls and defenses before I ever even knew what happened. I fell, and I fell hard. So did he. It wasn’t intentional. We were both married. And we knew it was wrong so we ended that part of our relationship. That was devastating for both of us, and so difficult to maintain. There were many times we’d go no contact, but one or both of us couldn’t stay away. We managed to be “just friends” - a difficult, fraught with tension shell of what was “us”. He was my best friend, and more so than losing the man I loved I couldn’t stand to lose the only man I’ve ever trusted with my whole heart. But now I have lost both because he is gone and I’m not allowed to grieve. People don’t understand because they only know the part where we were “friends” - but we were so much more than that. He was the person who showed up for me every day, rain or shine. No matter what. I didn’t even get that from someone who has been my “best friend” for twenty years. I wasn’t “allowed” to love him, or to be with him in that way but it didn’t mean that I didn’t. I just didn’t go there anymore and was “content” to have him in my life as a friend rather than not at all. The idea of missing him forever was my biggest fear, and of course exactly what I am facing now. My heart feels dead. My soul feels broken. My days are so lonely that I feel like i’m being crushed alive. My chest hurts. I hyperventilate. I cry at the drop of a hat. I’m absolutely sick with grief. I can’t eat. I can’t sleep without numbing my mind with medication. I feel like i’ve lost everything that mattered to me. Everything that gave me the smallest bit of happiness, even if I couldn’t have all of it. I didn’t even get to say goodbye. I feel like I can’t go on, even though I know I need to. I have a child and that child needs me. But I am broken beyond repair and I can’t even grieve properly because no one will understand. I have to hide my feelings away until no one is around. Carry on with my life even though it’s breaking me to do so. We did the right thing for years. No lapses in judgment. Having enough respect for each other to never go there again. But I loved him. At the end of the day, no matter how shitty it had been… he was the only person I wanted to talk to. We really did manage to be friends. But still… it’s like I never existed. I’m erased from his story because no one knew, but he will forever be in mine because I will never recover from this. I need help. And it seems there is no help for people like me. People who, ultimately did the right thing but are still being punished for it.  

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Dear Nicole,

I'm sorry to hear what you are dealing with and all the pain you are feeling. I hope you'll consider finding some additional supports through the community or through church. It might help to talk to a counsellor or join a support group.

Please know are with you.

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