Anyway... I read an article in Glamour magazine (deep reading, I know) called "The Best Decision-Making Tool Ever," by Suzy Welch. The author describes a strategy that she calls 10-10-10: "It's a way to sort out every complicated decision by assessing the impact it'll have on your life in 10 minutes, 10 months, and 10 years." So I am going to 10-10-10 my current situation.
If I choose to stay:
In 10 minutes, I will likely still be sitting at this computer, still shocked that I am wasting away my days on sites like infidelity.com, survivinginfidelity.com, and marriagebuilders.com.
In 10 months, my relationship with my husband might be stronger, and I might be ready to forgive. My house and my kids and my job will still be here. My extended family will still believe my marriage is good, and maybe it will be by then. On the contrary, I might discover that my husband's infidelity is something I cannot get past, and the 10 year mark might never arrive.
In 10 years, if I stay, if my husband and I work on our relationship and repair the fault-lines that led us to where we are in this moment, if I am able to forgive and move on, if I never find any more evidence of any new infidelities, things will likely be good. My family will be together and my children will be in a stable home. And hopefully I will not feel like a fool for having not left when they were young.
If I choose to leave:
In 10 minutes, I will be sobbing uncontrollably with the realization that my family is about to be ripped apart.
In 10 months, I will be a single parent. I might be living in a townhome, or in my mother's basement. My children's chance at a happy nuclear family will be gone.
In 10 years, I imagine I will be a happily remarried woman. Hopefully my children will be well-adjusted, and my relationship with their father amicable. I will consider myself strong and triumphant.
Notice that I'm giving myself a happy ending in 10 years, either way. Hopefully that will be prove to be true. 10-10-10... try it. Maybe it will give you a happy ending too.