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Wednesday, February 1, 2023


My mom had an affair 20 years ago for 4 years with a close friend of the family. My dad never knew.


I’m spiraling. This has shattered my perception of my mother. I’m hurt, I’m disgusted, I’m feeling betrayed, I’m feeling like the childhood picture of my family was all a lie.

My dad passed away 7 years ago. This is the only time since then that I can say I’m happy he’s gone, because this would DESTROY him.

I just found out about this from said “friend of the family”s ex wife (let’s call her Jane). At the time of the affair, the friend of the family (let’s call him John), was single. John didn’t marry Jane until many years after the affair.

Jane told me because John told her and she thought I deserved to know.


John was nearly a member of the family, coming over for all holidays and several dinners a week. I grew up thinking of him as almost a big brother (he was a few years younger than my parents and was pretty immature).

My parents helped John with a lot over the years, his parents passed away when he was young and he had no siblings so that’s why I thought we “took him in” into our family. My dad loved John like a brother/son.

Apparently a year or so of friendship is when the affair began. It went on for 4 years with my poor dad none the wiser. He literally was sitting across the table on holidays sharing dinner with the man who was screwing his wife. And after the affair ended JOHN STAYED AROUND as the friend. Like even last Christmas we spent it with him and his wife.

My mom told me my dad never knew and she’s felt terrible guilt over it for all these years. She was prepared to go to her grave with this. I had her answer a lot of questions and kept telling her any more lies are just going to make it worse. She swears she isn’t lying about any thing else but… HOW DO I BELIEVE ANYTHING THAT COMES OUT OF HER MOUTH?!

She says there were no more occurrences with John after the 4 years and after my dad passed I installed security cameras all over the outside of her house, so I would have seen him coming/going. So I’m inclined to believe her, but again… Can I trust anything from someone who could lie that much for 4 years?


I told her the friendship with John is over. She agreed (but obviously I’m sure she’s pissed he told).

I told her I need time to process. But currently I can’t imagine forgiving this, and my respect for her is gone.

I’m in a bad place. I can’t sleep, I’m nauseous. I already looked for a therapist but I can’t schedule anything until after Christmas. She asked me to keep the secret and I agreed.

But at the same time; why does she deserve to suffer NO consequences from this?! She got to have her cake and eat it too. She got away with it.

John is in all my family photos and videos.

It’s sick and insane to keep him around as a friend after. I feel like that makes this so so so much worse.

Does anyone have any advice? How do I go forward with my relationship with my mom? Until this bomb dropped we were very very close and she comes over often to see my kids and my kids love her dearly.

I do not know how to go forward from here.

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