How can I fix this.

Visitor's Question from a 21-30 year old Male
My wife and I have been together for 5 years. We've been married for 3. When I first got together with her she had an eight month old son. I have taken him in as my own and raised his since infancy. His father comes and goes as he pleases and really doesn't care about him. We have also had a son of our own. He is 1 1/2. In the past 2 months things have spiraled out of control. I found out my wife had been cheating on me for about 3 weeks. I packed the kids up and went to my mother's. In the middle of the night I decided to come home and try to work things out. I found her in bed with a DIFFERENT guy. After I beat his ass I let him leave. I have moved back into the house because I want to try and mend what we have and because the kids need stability. We were truly happy and I just don't know what happened. She doesn't seem like the same person I married and she has arrainged to get some counceling for herself. When she was 11 she was raped. I'm not a therapist but I'm under the impression that some of this is stemming from that. She was having nightmares about it recently. I know that you are not professionals and that you may not have all the answers I seek but I just want to know how I can rebuild this without pushing her farther away. She says she feels nothing and Im trying to give her time and space. I know that I can't force her to love me and right now Im trying to be her friend. I have known her for the better part of 10 years and she is not acting like herself. I know that i have to be here for her even if she doesn't realize that herself. How can I start the healing proccess without it coming across as pressure to get back together with me? I can't bear the thought of splitting up our family. My step son looks to me as his father but I have no legal rights to him. I don't want to remove the only father figure he really has and make him feel like he doesnt matter. At the same time I truly love my wife and we have had a generally happy marriage. I can forgive her for the things that she has done to me. I just need to know how to rebuild our love. I know that you may not be able to answer what I am asking for but any advise you could give would be appreciated. I feel lost without my wife's touch. Thank you for yout time. Advice
You are doing all the right things and your analysis of the situation seems to very good. Counseling may help her better understand herself and may bring your family back together. Hopefully, her counselor will suggest that the two of you get family counseling together. That would be an excellent step.

Meanwhile, keep being supportive. Help more around the house if you are not doing so already. Be very active in parenting the boys who are at a very troublesome stage (terrible two's). Help feeding, bathing and entertaining the boys. Take them out sometimes for dinner so she can have some time alone.

Look at what she is doing with her time. If it is cleaning, cooking, laundering, then pitch in and help. She, like you, is going through a very
depressing and confusing time in her life.

Finally, you used the term "fix" in the title of your question. Be aware that men generally try to "fix" things and this can be overdone. If she is willing to talk to you, simply listen and don't try to fix things unless she asks.

You are a very good husband! Good luck! George

-- from George
One of Your Friendly Advisors at

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