Elizabeth Edwards' Anguish Lurks Behind United Front

But incurable cancer factored heavily into her decision to stay, say friends
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 14, 2008 9:38 AM CDT
Rielle Hunter holds a video camera as John Edwards campaigns in Portsmouth, N.H. in 2006.   (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
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(Newser) – Behind the staunch show of support in public, People reports that Elizabeth Edwards has struggled mightily since her husband began revealing in 2006 his affair with Rielle Hunter. Edwards didn't confess to the affair all at once but in "installments"—and though devastated, Elizabeth's terminal cancer factored powerfully into her decision to stick with her marriage.

"Do I kick him out, or do we have a 30-year marriage that can be rebuilt?" is how her best friend characterized Elizabeth's inner debate. "She couldn't say, 'Well, maybe we'll work through this for years, or maybe we should separate for two years.' [The cancer] forced her to choose whether to move forward."