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Dad Asks How To 'Get My Family Back' After Leaving His Wife For 'Messy' Mistress Who Doesn't Like His Kids

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A distraught man looking out a window

A dad who left his wife for another woman got put in place after asking for advice on how to "get my family back." 

Posting to the "r/Advice" subreddit, he described how moving in with his mistress has been such a disaster that he's now desperate to retun to his old life.

In his Reddit post, in which he explained that he "had an affair and lost my wife" and "need[s] advice on how to get my family back," he detailed the mess he got himself into with Mel, one of his coworkers.

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The man began his affair with a 23-year-old because he says his wife Em is no longer "the person I married."

A father of three children ages 8, 4 and 2 months, the man writes that he began his affair because his new partner, Mel, "always complimented me and laughed at my jokes."

He began making up business trips as excuses to be with Mel, which worked until his wife saw Mel's text messages on his computer.

When his ex-wife confronted him about the affair, he denied it at first, but then admitted he was seeing Mel because his wife "never makes me feel good or laughs at my jokes the way Mel does."

His wife handled the infidelity "with grace," but asked him to move out, which he gladly did because he wanted to be with his mistress.

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He now regrets the affair.

Mel, much to his annoyance, is messy, never does housework, and goes out with friends to avoid spending time with his three children.

He writes that he only gets to see his children once a week and that Mel does everything he can to avoid them because she "has absolutely no interest in the kids."

And being only 23, Mel lives a life that is normal for her age—"constantly drinking or smoking weed and always going out to the clubs with her friends."

He also complains that Mel is "very messy leaving all her stuff everywhere all the time and she never cleans or cooks."

Her habits have resulted in "screaming matches" far worse than any fight he ever had with his ex-wife.

And Mel's low wage means he is now financially strapped too, especially after he lost all of his savings, retirement and investments in his divorce.

He now says he understands his ex-wife was exhausted by the demands of being a working mother and wife, and now that he is doing everything for himself, he gets why she grew distant.

He also misses the sex life he had with his ex-wife, because Mel is "a dead fish" with "no connection or intimacy."

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"I just want everything back how it was," he writes.

He then asked how he can show his wife that he is a changed man who wants his family back.

Most commenters agreed that he didn't sound like he actually wanted his wife and family back, but just regretted the consequences of his affair.

Reddit users had very little sympathy for him. One person excoriated him for the fact that "Your wife had to birth your child, with the knowledge that you’d been cheating on her for months."

"You suck," they added. "Go to therapy and leave her alone she deserves better."

Others felt he needed to just suck it up and deal with the consequences of his cheating.

One user wrote, "Your wife is a person. She’s not a commodity you can put down and then pick back up if you don’t like the other one you tried on for a while."

And when it came to the man's regrets, many were unconvinced.

As one user put it, "It doesn't sound like you actually miss your ex wife and kids, or that you have changed, it sounds more like you miss the comfort and stability of having a wife looking after you and your home."

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Many experts agree that healing after infidelity must begin with sincere remorse on the part of the person who cheated.

Renowned psychotherapist Esther Perel, one of today's foremost experts on relationships, marriage and sexuality, told YourTango in 2022 that reconciling after an affair starts with owning up to the harm caused.

As she puts it, "The willingness to understand only follows after there has been a sincere acknowledgment and demonstration of remorse and guilt of the hurt that’s been inflicted."

Something this guy might want to give some thought before approaching his ex-wife.

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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.