Two months after it was revealed Andrew Ettingshausen had a 12-month affair with his teammate’s wife, the former Rugby League player has spoken publicly.
Andrew and his wife of 24 years, Monique, spoke to the Australian Women’s Weekly about Andrew’s 2010 affair with Ali Mellor, the wife of her former best friend, Paul Mellor – and why Monique has decided to stand by him.
“I am going to spend the rest of my life trying to win Monique’s love back,” Andrew said.
“Because I haven’t given it back,” Monique replied, “even though I am here doing this story, I’ve still got a long way to go before I can say I love him.”
In the interview, Andrew says the affair started in part because of the severe depression he was suffering after a business venture went wrong. “I started thinking I had failed Monique and the kids, and there was no way she could love me anymore,” he said. “And I convinced myself she was working against me. My wife who has stood by me through everything. I mean, what sort of mental state must I have been in?”
He said the sporadic affair was the “biggest mistake of my life.”
“Words can’t describe the pain I feel when I look into Monique’s eyes. Her eyes reflect the disgust, the hurt and the gut-wrenching betrayal that I have brought to her life. I feel far beneath any level of humankind. Every day, I cry tears of shame and my mind aches with an intensity that no medicine can cure,” he wrote to journalist Bryce Corbett later in an email.
Bryce wrote the reason Andrew and Monique (who have four children) agreed to the interview was “not an attempt to repair their reputation, but to offer their story up as a cautionary tale”.
If you or someone you know is suffering from depression, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit the Beyond Blue website.