Sandi Jackson: News of Affair Felt Like "Sucker Punch" - NBC Chicago
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Sandi Jackson: News of Affair Felt Like "Sucker Punch"



    Sandi Jackson: News of Affair Felt Like "Sucker Punch"
    In happier times: Sandi and husband Jesse Jackson Jr.

    Ald. Sandi Jackson is speaking out publicly about her husband's infidelity, which she says happened years ago but was only reported last week in the press.

    In an exclusive interview with Sun-Times columnist Michael Sneed, Jackson says her husband fessed up about his dealings with a blonde restaurant hostess nearly two years ago.

    "He said it was over. I was mortified and in agony, but he knew if I found out any other way it would be over. That the only way to save our marriage was to come clean," Jackson told Sneed.

    The alderman says she felt different about other people's affairs that have played out in the press, than when the same crisis fell in her lap.

    "You know, when the Clintons ran into marital trouble, I thought Hillary should leave Bill," she said. "I couldn't stand what Tiger Woods did and how his wife had to suffer publicly.

    Jackson said when "the beast" landed at her door, she didn't know how to react.

    "There were sleepless nights and I started losing hair and I told him I would only consider staying if we got into therapy."

    Her husband agreed, she told Sneed, "and we got through it."

    What really hurt, Jackson said, was to have the whole thing dragged up again in the media when she thought it was behind her.

    "I thought we had turned the corner. Then this sucker punch in the press -- and having to live it all over again publicly."

    Jackson reacted publicly to the affair being outed last Thursday, at her 47th birthday party and fundraiser for her re-election campaign.

    "I told them: 'I put my foot knee-deep in his ass and he has been having a very difficult time sleeping peacefully since then.'"

    She says her husband, who was in attendance that night, "laughed because he knew it was true," but she wanted to send a message that she hadn't taken the whole thing lightly.