South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford repeatedly asked his wife's permission to visit his lover, Maria Belen Chapur, in the months after she discovered his affair.
"I said absolutely not. It's one thing to forgive adultery; it's another thing to condone it," Jenny Sanford said in her first comments on the affair.
Jenny said that when Mark Sanford, inexplicably went off the grid last week, she hoped he was hiking on the Appalachian Trail, as his staff claimed at first.
That he had dared go to Argentina to see his mistress left her stunned.
"He was told in no uncertain terms not to see her," she said. "I was hoping he was on the Appalachian Trail. But I was not worried about his safety."
"I was hoping he was doing some real soul searching somewhere and devastated to find out it was Argentina [with Maria Belen Chapur]. It's tragic."
The Sanfords had separated about two weeks ago. Mark Sanford told the family that he wanted some time away to work on writing a book and "clear his head."
The S.C. First Lady said, "I had every hope he was not going to see her."
"You would think that a father who didn't have contact with his children, if he wanted those children, he would toe the line a little bit," she said.
Mark Sanford returned Wednesday to end nearly four days of speculation over his whereabouts, publicly confess his cheating and emotionally apologize.
Jenny Sanford, a Georgetown-educated, former Wall Street vice president, did not stand next to her husband Wednesday during his public confession.
She said she discovered her husband's affair with Maria Belen Chapur early this year after coming across a copy of a letter to her in one of his files.