How online survivors club women-scorned.co.uk is helping victims of affairs

When a group of friends found their husbands had cheated, they got busy helping others like them.

They say hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Some cut up their philandering husband’s suits, some change the locks. Vicky Pryce chose to dob on her MP husband about dodging speeding points.

Now, though, there’s a less dramatic route to overcoming the hurt and anger of discovering an affair. A website has launched offering women a chance to share stories, seek advice from counsellors and meet others going through the same thing.

Women-scorned.co.uk was started by Jan Griffiths, 47, after she caught her husband of 21 years cheating on her for the third time. ‘I was devastated,’ she says. ‘Nothing is worse than finding out the person you love and trust is spending quality time with someone else. My friends were great but after the third time it’s a big ask for yet more sympathy. I went to see a counsellor, which was invaluable. My first thought was: I am lucky I can afford this but how many women can’t afford £50 per hour for a minimum of ten sessions?’

Jan stayed in her marriage because she didn’t want to disrupt her family lifestyle but struggled with her choice.

‘One day I googled support for infidelity and all I got were affairs websites and ads for Viagra,’ she says. ‘I was so angry, I broke down. I phoned a friend whose husband had also had an affair. She said: “We should do something about this.”’

When Jan spoke to friends about setting up a support group, she found three of her close friends had gone through similar ordeals and had also felt they had no one to talk to.

Since its launch, women-scorned.co.uk, free to join, has gained 1,000 members and around 40 experts including therapists, legal and financial advisers and dating gurus. There are high-profile names on board, such as agony aunt Denise Robertson and astrologist Russell Grant. They have every area relevant to a newly single woman covered – relaunching a career, decorating a home or getting back into shape.

Last week a sex survey published in The Lancet found we are becoming less forgiving of affairs. Nearly 70 per cent of women consider cheating always wrong, compared with only 53 per cent 20 years ago. Despite this, today’s cultural climate makes affairs easier. Social networking brings us into contact with people outside our familiar social circles and no-strings dating websites aid anonymity.

This week maritalaffair.co.uk, which helps married people find no-strings-attached sex, said it is expecting activity and new memberships to increase in the run-up to Christmas.

It’s little wonder, then, a friendly and free support network to help and advise is needed for those picking up the pieces. Men are not forgotten either: the site plans to launch men-scorned.co.uk next year.

 

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