I'm glad it was helpful to you for clarity. I'm very sorry her answer was not to end it. That is painful for you.
To be honest, I can't believe this is happening now
Sounds like "shock" as the first stage of the grief process
as you digest her answer.
At this point you could take a few days "time out" to digest her response. But you could put a time limit on that so you aren't hanging around forever. Result on her end if you do? She gets to be with both of you like her disregard for you is inconsequential.
Her devaluing you and the relationship you share COULD have consequences, and SHOULD have consequences. You could determine what those are as you move through the stage of grief and your feelings emotion catch up with your thought logic.
You seem clear about these things...
That for her to CONTINUE the unethical affair?
- Despite her knowing that you do NOT give you blessing and goodwill for this relationship to exist?
- Despite her knowing that you lose respect for her as she carries on?
- Despite her knowing it causes you pain?
Now you know these things for SURE:
- You now KNOW now that speaking up for yourself and drawing the line in the sand is self-respecting behavior. So even though the outcome is NOT what you ideally hope for, YOU can feel at peace with yourself. And that feels good. So could be brave and do it again and keep choosing self respecting behavior.
- YOU know that SHE knows all the above. She cannot be pretending like she doesn't know.
- YOU know now that her offer "to end it because it caused you pain" was false cookies.
Hint: when someones offers to end something that is hurtful to you rather than just END it? It's usually false cookies. And you called her on it and found it so. False package cookies. The real offer was "Be ok with my hurting you so I can continue my crazy without feeling guilty about it."
Your next chess move could be this:
Wait a reasonable time for her to digest your line in the sand. Maybe she's in shock/denial and really doesn't believe you will go.
And give you time to digest her response. It's a whopper.
Since you shared 8 good years, in service to the relationship you once had? Waiting an additional few days is neither here nor there. Give it a week. Then you could ask again if this is her Final Word. She will not end her cheating affair?
Same answer? Then you are free and clear to leave. Could tell her you want out. Then get ON with the business of removing yourself from shenanigans so YOU can be safe. Disband shared whatevers and seperate households.
It is NOT an ultimatum for you to choose to leave her because you are no longer compatible. She now chooses unethical behaviors you cannot condone. She is going places you are not willing to follow.
You are allowed to choose healthy behavior for yourself. You are allowed to choose a different path for yourself.
Not only are you allowed, you have to in order to preserve your best long term healths and well being.
Whether she carries on with her affair or not is her business. You cannot control what she does or how she treats you.
You DO control what behavior you choose. You DO control your "staying-ness." You grant or do not grant you willingness to be here for more crazy.
If YOU have to choose between YOU respecting yourself or you NOT respecting yourself? Choose self respecting behavior.
Even if the price tag is leaving her to her cheating affair on her own and you remove yourself from the line of fire. Love her all you want... but from a safe distance and so YOU aren't racking up more dings.
Her asking you to put up with her having a cheating affair is all kinds of FRESH.
I do not suggest you STAY in this relationship with a partner who does not respect you. That can take time to take in, and digest, and accept that this is really the place you are at here. I get that. You will grieve... but again... even if it sucks? Could grit teeth, and do the job in front of you.
Could decide to opt out of continuing shenanigans.
Could leave so she gets a taste of what she's going to be facing if she doesn't get it together.
Could choose being true to yourself over compromising your own ethics or values.
Hang in there. It's not easy to feel, I know.