real life

'Three days into my honeymoon, I found out about my husband's affair.'

The author of this post is known to Mamamia but has chosen to remain anonymous for privacy reasons. 

As I lay by the pool of our luxury Tuscan villa with the sunlight bouncing off my brand new diamond wedding ring, I’ll admit it, I felt smug.

I’d just married the love of my life, Harry, after seven years together and now we were on the Italian honeymoon I’d spent months planning to perfection.

It felt even sweeter because two years earlier, around the time we’d got engaged, Harry and I had gone through a really rocky patch and I’d worried we might not survive.

The fact that we’d fought back from the brink was a testament to the strength of our relationship.

As I lay by the pool of our luxury Tuscan villa with the sunlight bouncing off my brand new diamond wedding ring, I'll admit it, I felt smug. Image: Getty.


On the third day of our trip, while Harry was swimming in the pool, I logged into Facebook on my iPad. I'd received so many messages of congratulations since posting our wedding photos online and I'd not had a chance to respond to any of them. Now was as good a time as any.

As I scrolled through my flooded inbox, I noticed there was a message sitting in my "other" folder. It was from a woman called Sarah who I didn't recognise. Assuming it was junk, I was about to delete it when I glimpsed the first line. I've been sleeping with Harry for three months...


My heart stalled. Surely this was some kind of joke? Bile rose in my throat as I realised message had been sent two years earlier - right in the eye of the storm that was our rocky patch. I don't know how I'd missed it; I guess I'd never paid much attention to the "other" folder before now.

Sarah went on to say she'd met Harry in a bar (the one she named, I knew, was close to Harry's office). She hadn't known he had a girlfriend at first, but after their first few dates (yes, he'd been wining and dining her, as well as sleeping with her), he'd come clean - and they'd continued their affair.

It's over now, the message said. He ended it after you got engaged. But I thought I should let you know who you're about to marry. 

Listen:  Esther Perel tells Mia why it's not only unhappy people who stray. Post continues after audio.


Gazing across the glistening water, my eyes fell on Harry, my husband, and he blew me a kiss. I dropped the iPad on the ground.

I thought I would feel angry, and I did. But there was a far more overwhelming emotion. I felt... afraid. Everything I'd ever thought was true was a lie. I tried to imagine my life without Harry and I couldn't.

My intuition told me I was clutching at straws, but I sent Sarah a message anyway. You're lying, I challenged.

The response hit me like speeding train: Remember when he was late to your mum's surprise 60th? It's because he was with me.

Harry had been late that night. We'd argued about it. The details in Sarah's message were so specific, I could no longer doubt what she was telling me.


The confrontation was surprisingly tame. Harry readily admitted everything the moment I showed him the messages. He said it'd taken him straying to realise that what we had together was truly what he wanted. He begged and begged for another chance. And eventually, I gave it to him.