You know, I've never been a big believer in the 180 thing...it didn't fit for me. But your partner sounds pretty callous. Have you read about it in the Healing Library (yellow box on the upper left side of the page)?
It sounds like you need some emotional distance from her (easier said than done of course). I think the structure and "rules" of the 180 help keep people focused on themselves...especially when it seems you're getting pretty much nothing from her.
There are so many great women out there... if she can't be one of them, it may be time to get out.
Has anyone (particularly the ladies) had to go through a custody battle where your sexuality was used against you?
If you have, or know someone who has and their trip through the legal system please PM me.
Every situation varies significantly, but one of the biggest barriers for me in a same sex relationship was trying to figure out what the right boundaries were to expect for my WS. Her A was with a female coworker and we really struggled around boundaries at work that would prevent risks of A in the future. All the books talk about pretty simple and concrete boundaries - don't go out to lunch alone with the opposite sex, don't share personal info about your marriage with the opposite sex, etc, etc. Well, when the potential for affairs comes from other women and most of your friends are women then what? How do we deal with a new friendship that seems borderline and makes me uncomfortable? Somehow we got to a place that seems right and is working for now but it was a bit more complicated to get there. Our boundaries took a bit more testing and communication to figure out.
I look forward to learning from one another through this thread!
I'm really sorry you are in such a tough spot. It's admirable for you to take responsibility for your role in it and that is important for R. But it sounds like your partner hasn't done the same yet and that is a problem!
In answer to your question, Yes you really can R after all the emotional turmoil and it can be worth it in the end...but not in every case! It takes commitment from both of you to really make it work. If your partner isn't willing to go NC then they aren't really ready to R. That puts you in a tough spot because you have to decide what you are willing to put up with until that happens. Healing library and the book you are reading are some great resources. Have you tried marital counseling?
In my situation, the 180 wasn't the best approach so with input from my MC I figured out what I was willing to tolerate and for how long. My WS lied about NC initially because she knew it was what I required for us to work on R and she wasn't ready. I was near breaking point when I found out they were still in contact but it wasn't until she truly understood the impact her actions continued to have on me and made real NC that we finally made progress on R...but that was over 1 year later from original Dday! Many may not wait that long. I'm happy I did because I knew my partner needed to make the decision in order for it to work and we are in a much better place now. However, if we didn't have a child I may not have waited that long. There are no clear cut answers. You have to figure out what is right for you, and so does your partner.
I highly recommend MC to help with that if you are both willing and committed to making it work. 14 years is a lot to give up but that may be the right answer if your partner isn't willing to do the hard work to make choices that won't continue to hurt you. Unfortunately sometimes it takes losing the comforts around you to realize how good you had it so that may be what it takes for her. Regardless you need to take care of yourself first.
PM if you want to talk any more. Good luck on making the decision that is right for YOU!
[This message edited by merci at 6:10 PM, January 24th (Sunday)]
To others, anyone else reading: I would love to hear perspectives on how to deal with who is a potential "safe friend" when you are both women and most of your friends are women as well?
My partner is butch, a masculine-identified woman. I am no longer comfortable with her having friendships/acquaintances at ALL that are either gay and femme, or bi, or hell, even straight women because the OW that came on to her and she had the EA with was a bi-curious "straight" woman in the midst of a nasty divorce. I just wish all our friends were gay guys!!
“...cuz i got tossed out the window of love's El Camino
and i shattered into a shower of sparks on the curb.." Ani DiFranco
Generally people who have been friends for a long time with a person and have a track record are ok.
Sometimes certain ex's (I usually find they are people that one didn't date for long or just go back so far that the ex history is almost null in regards to the current relationship)
New friends that aren't really interested in you both as a couple I frown upon. this is exactly what happened with my ex. Yeah I'm capable of having my own connections and friendships outside of my primary R but then I don't cheat. And quite generally those friendships are with straight women, straight men or gay men. Other lesbians I actually have a harder time connecting with primarily given my interests so it isn't much of a concern for my partner usually. But if it is I listen.
I think that is a good clue too what does she do when you mention a friend might be making you uncomfortable.
So I take each new situation under advisement.
[This message edited by Syzy at 10:30 PM, April 21st (Wednesday)]
Technically speaking I don't have any, since I'm bi (LTRs on both side of the street, curiosity satisfied on the playground when swingsets were still part of the curriculum). It drives my WH nuts, especially right after the affair, but it's always & still bothers him. Even though I'm not the WW, but the BW. Actually, to be brutally honest, I quit my job working in the community because there were too many 'not friends of the marriage' and 'consolers with agendas'.
I second the straight-chicks not being safe. Can't even tell you how much I second that.
Syzy's guidelines are EXCELLENT. Taking each person as a unique situation, AND if the wrong vibe pings seeing what your P's reaction is.
The world needs more gay guys. 100% gay, women might as well be a separate (but interesting to talk to) species, gay guys. Because... as much as I've deleted this 3 times now... even gay guys as a group aren't totally safe, because not all of 'em are at 100%. ((I don't remind my H of this, because he forgets... and I don't want to cause anymore fear/pain but we bi-types tend to get lumped with whoever we're dating/married to.)).
Taking people individually, in my experience is the only way to go.
PS... The topic is in my ballfield/ realm of experience, which is why I answered, but if I shouldn't have just let me know & I'll delete.
Despite my screen name, I am very much a woman and hell yeah I wish I could change that name to gladshesgone
Gay relationships can be different because of all the styles of "open relationships" and the constant bombardment of sex that I feel in our community.
My BH and I (married 6 months, together for five years) had D-Day on Monday 5/31.
The full story: I have had issues of maintaining secrets from my husband since we committed years ago. At first it was online only (cyber, camming) and he discovered it. I got angry at first because I felt my privacy was violated. We agreed to allowing me to watch and participate cam, but being open about it, and nobody local.
I kept that promise, and then he started doing the same thing. We enjoyed it together--it became a part of foreplay occasionally. Although we discussed having an open relationship, neither one of us wanted it, though I have always said that I believe in monogamy AND forgiveness.
In August of 2008, a few months after we bought a home, he went to a sports tournament and called me asking me if it's "ok if he gets a bj from a teammate" who he had a bit of a crush on. I was taken aback, and didn't really reply--I thought he was joking.
He ended up sleeping with him, and when he got back confessed the whole thing. My emotions were all over the place, from betrayed to turned on by the idea of it. But the hurt was there as well, and he knew it. He told me to "take a pass" and fool around with someone else as well. We agreed to a slightly open relationship (involving others from time to time).
A few months later I took the pass, but didn't tell him about it beforehand. I did afterwards, and he also admitted to meeting up with the teammate again, just once.
We got married--but was still in the open relationship that we agreed to.
Two months ago I met someone online who liked me, but wasn't into my H. I agreed to meet with him for a ONS. Shortly after, a friend of mine and I slept together, also on the DL. I kept thinking it was no big deal because it was just sex.
I chatted with the friend about hooking up again, but in the end never did. I texted him with the statement "I want to be better than that" and we decided to just be friends.
However, this week my H discovered the chat about hooking up again, in which I said, "let's not yet...wait until we're drunk sometime, lol."
He was crushed beyond imagination. I took full ownership of my mistakes--dishonesty, lies, and even being callous about our marriage by doing this.
And now my emotions are on a roller coaster. I want to be of help to him, but don't know how. I wonder if he regrets his own transgressions and he's retreating into himself thinking about it.
I have IC starting tomorrow, and I am trying to convince him to go to MC. However, he seems convinced that I will never change--I'll always want secrets from him and that our marriage is in question.
Is this a normal reaction? The anger I can take, but the silence is killing me.
I'm here! Are you OK?
I know I will make it so yes I am ok
Hurting like hell... no, not OK...thanks for reaching out
I am sorry too that you are hurting. This crap totally, totally, TOTALLY sucks!!!!
My significant other of 20 years continues to have a relationship with the person she cheated on me with.... and it freakin' still breaks my heart. I am remaining very strong with NC (except for kid stuff) and I am sure that I come accross to her as happier, busier and more "together" than what I really am.
I'll be thinking about you and your own emotional hell. Feel free to private message me if you want - our stories are similar but my WS picked a trampy female co-worker to have her A with instead of a guy.
I'll end with one of my favorite quotes (borrowed from someone on this site) :
When one door closes, another door opens. It's the journey through the hallway that sucks.
When one door closes, another door opens. It's the journey through the hallway that sucks.