Why do we keep it secret?
I just thought of something on that particular topic. I kept it secret because I knew the acquaintance's wife. I was certain that she would think it was somehow my fault. So I was hard on him, distanced myself, and thought that would do it. In retrospect I would have told her, even if it resulted in her thinking that. But at that time....I hadn't walked in the shoes of a betrayed person. Because when I really think about it now....He was betraying her. Even though I exercised my own boundaries, I could have/should have clued her in to the lack of his.
While I was flattered I still knew what he was doing was wrong and I didn't want to be associated in any way shape or form, with it. I just wanted to "get away", and take my ego boost with me maybe???? Not sure. I am not sure if feeling flattered is wrong, in and of itself, but certainly not outing his intentions was. Now I can say I don't feel like it was flattering...I did at the time....Now I think even the act of him hitting on me is disgusting.
Today I feel different. I believe that any recurring feelings of attraction (and I mean anything more than once!)needs to be exposed instantly. I think it's an important step to preventing A's from happening.
Beauty is a calling...a call "to transfigure what has harden or was wounded within you"
-- John O'Donohue
H was still in the fog at that time and yes, it was VERY tempting to email this guy back and start chatting. I knew he really liked me and that was why we'd only gone out for lunch the one time. I was too messed up during my separation to think I was even close to dating anyone.
Anyway, yes, I did immediately tell H about the email and even about the temptation to email him back. I knew H would respond in an angry way and I wanted to make sure that I had that extra emotional ammunition to keep myself from reasoning that it was okay to keep in contact with this guy.
Before the A, when people would hit on me, I shut them down pretty quickly and always told my H about it... normally, I was complaining about it to him. I just didn't really see myself with anyone else; I only wanted my H's attention.
Now, mostly, I think I just wouldn't want to be involved with anyone else, if R doesn't work out. Too many married men hit on me when I was separated for me to feel comfortable being vulnerable with anyone.
WH and I used to tell eachother EVERYTHING. Hence, time goes by, we get older, and sometimes I felt the flattery from somebody else didn't always have to be shared. It was a nice thought I'd pull out on a bad day.But never once considered acting on it.
Also WH has always been the jealous type, so I figured why upset him w/something as trivial as a compliment. He would always step right in when he saw me getting some attention. Like a child he would always make sure I knew when someone else found him attractive. Like w/OW #1. He would come home from work and everything was Brenda says I have a nice butt, Brenda says I look good for my age, blah, blah, blah.
Now w/OW#2 he was very tight lipped. I think that's because A#1 was only an EA and very short lived. With A#2 I got ALL the typical talk- ILUBNILWY, rewriting of marital history and so on. Also I was always getting accused of cheating. So, I never kept secrets about "outside" attention but WH certainly did! Also he's not interested in everything about my life like he used to be.
Hope that answers your question. Sorry for the ramble.
And sometimes I think we keep stuff like "outside attention" a secret so as not to hurt our spouse...
***I'm not trying to rowl anyone up. I just wanted to give some food for thought for ALL of us.
I'm sort of in the camp of icbtih8 in wondering if my BW and I would have been more open or recognized those times when our ego's were stroked by some source outside of our M, if we would have talked about things more, would I have been less likely to have an EA?
My FWS and I did bring it up when we felt someone else was flirting with the other. He usually said something because he was jealous and got angry. I usually let him know that it seemed to be going to his head and reminded him that he should have boundaries. I was always a little irritated by other men flirting with me when it was so obvious by the ring on my finger that I was married. He on the other hand, seemed to get an ego stroke from it.
As for after my FWH's A, I mentioned earlier that a friend of mine let me know he had feelings for me. I was tempted because I needed validation after my FWH showed me with his affair that he didn't care about my feelings. But, I am happy I didn't follow through and I ended all contact with that person.
I'm not trying to be mean, but I do feel that most people that have affairs have less boundaries and low self esteem. They seem to think in more selfish terms then those that don't have affairs. I think you will find that most people that choose not to have an A, have more confidence and set better boundaries. Also, they seem to take the time to consider others feelings before proceeding.
[This message edited by nothereorthere at 9:36 PM, May 4th (Tuesday)]
Let me tell you about him, he's 6'6" (I'm 5'9" so to find someone taller than me was so grat!) We will have been marries 3 years in July. This man is my hero and I've told him so, he inspired me to get off drugs and clean up my life! He's rescued me more than a few times, and I look up to him. He is my rock. How can I help him to see that?
That might give you some insight into some of his pain. I suggest reading as much of the Healing Library as you can in the upper left there. Start with the BS stuff so you can understand to the best of ability why he reacts the way he does and the WS stuff to see what you can do to help him.
Edit: This http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=324250 is a wonderful post to read in the WS forums.
[This message edited by AttemptStrength at 11:39 AM, May 6th (Thursday)]
I'd never have spent the money on a wedding dress if I knew I was just going to a costume party.
I'm still alive but I'm barely breathing
Just praying to a God that I don't believe in
'cause I got time while she got freedom
'cause when a heart breaks no it don't break ev
Something AttemptStrength just asked in the BS Questions for WS thread got me thinking. Now, my STBX/BH is not interested in R and so does not care to ask questions. But if he did, and he asked me how many times I had sex with the OM/ex, for example, or how many times we saw each other over the course of the 5.5 months, I would honestly not know the exact number. I could give a close estimate, but there would be no way I could give an unequivocal "X number of times."
Is it possible for a BS to accept "I don't know" or "I don't remember" in a case like that?
Married 2.5 years
Reconciling after divorce
Doll I think a time line with what you think would be good. I don't know I don't remember is a slap in the face..
I'm not trying to crucify him in asking questions; I just really and honestly don't get it. Hell, we agreed and I fully expected him just to tell me if he didn't want to be with me. I would rather have been told the truth and had him leave than to lie and stay.
through herculean Kafkaesque temerity...
"Those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." But what truly matters is what *you* think." Dr. Seuss
Also it is hard to understand that what was the truth then isn't the truth now. Your not the same person now as you was then.
A good MC will you and your BH see this.
The most significant thing he has done has been through the expression of his reverence for my life. Reverence is the core of compassion, respect, and choice. Reverence is regard. It is the epitome, to me, of acknowledging my importance just for being alive and being me.
IT IS NOT my importance to him or what I give him or bring to his life. When he was able to shift from seeing me as a component of his life... treating me in ways... a possession... a right to have me. Well, that didn't make me feel important. It made me feel used. I felt "So happy I can be of assistance in your soap opera to make you feel better."
Reverence on the other hand is simply holding the individual in the highest esteem... not for what they give you or how you need them or want things from them. Just them. Letting their life have value other than what you may ascribe to it. Not making their importance about how it relates to you.
It is the epitome of being able to see someone for who and what they are... and loving them even if they aren't doing a 'darn thing for you'. Reverence.
I am perfectly happy to accept an I cant remember if its related to something that could be forgotten... exactly how many times FWW had sex with OM 2 or 3 for instance...
but other stuff like that she had sex with OM 4... not so much..
but also things like EA with OM 5 started before or after OM 4... that sort of thing should be able to be remembered when put into context with each other... hence i think the suggestion to write down a timeline...
@ stars fading... litle girls bang on the money.... and saying to him what you just said here probably wouldnt hurt. Id just caution you though, he may well need room to grieve... to feel his anger.... dont suffocate him if you think he isnt coming along fast enough...
What doesn't kill you will make you stronger.