I just saw this thread for the first time. It seems so unfair to have to deal with the burden of your WS's A, and then the burden of your mom's A, at the same time!
I hope you can convince her to see a therapist, both for her own sake, and to give you a break.
Take care of yourself, dealing with all these problems is just so emotionally draining...
I am tired. Dealing with my mom, trying to keep fWS stable (she doesn't do well with change and the move, selling old house, etc. has been a bitch), arranging the move, paying the bills, worrying about our jobs, and arranging for middle dog to travel 300 miles to specialty vet for surgery, etc, etc. has stretched me to the limit. I need to sleep.
I hope you got that sleep. It must be incredibly frustrating to have to be the ONLY person that can get things done for everyone in your life.
Actually---I know how that is. If I don't make the arrangements, appointments, gather materials, etc. shit doesn't get done.
Often I want to scream out to the universe "I AM ONE FUCKING PERSON, I CAN'T DO IT ALL" but, I somehow manage.
Now that I have "voiced" that...it sounds like I have some control issues.
I guess I better get back into IC.
My mom went to her first therapy appointment in 30 years. I hope this one is better than the one that told her to follow her heart (MOM)
I'm a Daddy's girl through and through. I've always known I was his favorite. But being the favorite of a serial cheater is hardly something to be proud of.
Dad cheated on Mom while they were dating, then later on while they were married. Finally, after we all moved to the states (born and raised in Puerto Rico) with 3 small children, he approached my mother with the following proposition:
Dad: You know I've been cheating on you. I think I should live with you and sleep with her whenever I want. She's fine with this idea. You should be too.
Mom kicks him out. Lots of drama ensues.
Dad marries OW. They have an OC (beautiful little sis). Dad becomes an alcoholic and start abusing pain killers. OW leaves Dad after he "dies" for 3 minutes, is brought back to life, and spends 2 months recovering.
I can't blame her. She did what was best for her children.
By this time I went from seeing my dad everyday when we were living together, to 3 times a week, to twice a week when I was 10, then not seeing him again until I'm 15.
At 15, he shows up one day with a new "wife" who is 5 months pregnant with my half brother. Dad still has a drinking problem and newly diagnosed mental issues.
His new "wife" is very nice and we hit it off. We're both pregnant; me with my first, her with her 5th. A few years pass and he is deep in alcoholism and up to his cheating habits again.
Enter the next OW, another drug addict/alcoholic. She gives him the beautiful gift of Hepatitis. Poor stepmom
After 9 years of this crap, stepmom kicks Dad out. Dad begins dating someone new (God Dad! Keep it in your pants!!!). This little jewel is 24 years old. How twisted that she's my age at this point?!?!?!
24 yr old does quite the number on Dad. Dad gets his sh*t together. Then she kicks him out after relocating him and little brother 3 states away.
Fast forward to my H's infidelity. Dad is our greatest advocate! Dad wants us to work things out. He starts spewing, "I wish I had tried one more time with your mother. When I was with her, I was the best I've ever been. I knew my house and my children were okay and I never had to worry. Sure, since then I've had moments of happiness. But I've never been as great as I was when I was with her".
He's thrilled we're together and making it work. However, he keeps making these extremely rude comments to FWH. I brushed it off as joking around. But he kept going. When I talk to him on the phone, he puts FWH down. All the time.
Is it jealousy that FWH is doing what he needs to do to make our marriage work and he couldn't? That's the only thing I can think of. I really don't have anyone in real life to discuss this with without feeling like I'm betraying my Dad in some way.
Arggh I have read through .some of the posts and really send my support and love to all of you here.
HYH: I admire the courage it must have taken to disclose your H's infidelity to your Dad. If you are reconciling with your H. I really believe your dad is betraying you with his comments. His putting himself and his own injured ego before you. I think this is pretty consistent behaviour for someone with substance dependancy. Maybe you could state very clearly that he is to not comment on your M or your H. this behaviour is meaning he is no freind to your M.
My story - very briefly. Both of my parents were unfaithful during my childhood. I knew my Mother thought this of my Dad but didn't know about his behaviour until I was an adult. He travelled wiht his business and largely played up on the road. However, he had a long term EA with a friends wife who was my Mum's friend. I knew about Mum's jealousy and thought she was over reacting.
My Mum had many affairs a couple of them right in front of us kids when dad was away. Some one night stands that I new about (in the house at the time) and one ONS that I walked in on them having sex. She didn't know that i saw this and stayed the night with him while cried myself to sleep in our car. I was 10 years old.
Dealing with the confirmation of my H's infidelity and my road to R has been littered with the deeds of my parents.
The other compounding factor is that my siblings and I were physcially and sexually abuse by our older sister.
anyway. That is my story and that runs beneath this. Our counsellor has said it is what has escalated the A. into a complete catastrophe that has left me totally traumatised. I am only just now beginning to cry tears of sadness. rather then this extreme sense of broken images and sensory overload when I reflect on the timeline and actions of his A.
Sorry for the long first post everyone.
That's so much to go through....
It kills me that the people who were supposed to protect us didn't.
Wow...My dad uh.."got around" like that too. I have one "full" sibling, and two half. My stepmother is 6 mos older than me, and we have the same first name. She goes by the formal name, I go by the nickname.
My youngest brother is 7. I am 36.
The things that happen when we're kids really do shape the adults that we become.
I'm glad your dad is rooting for you and your spouse to work it out. I agree that he's being a negative influence though. He needs to keep the rude shit to himself. It doesn't do any good...it makes your H feel shitty and makes you feel shitty. He needs to keep his mouth shut.
I would say that yes, he probably IS jealous that you're willing to work it out with your husband. He probably deeply regrets the family he threw away all those years ago.
Hang in there..
I never really thought about how my parents affected my M until after my A.
I love my parents but I am another one of those "daddy's girls." My dad has always been my best friend. I always knew his faults but he has always been there for me, and since he's my dad, I've always overlooked them and have accepted him for who he is, even if I didn't agree with him.
My dad and mom were pen pals (yes, old fashioned pen and paper) for one year. At the time, my dad was living with a woman who was very much in love with him, while he was writing my mom. He asked my mom to marry him through the letter and she said yes. She was in another country, so she thought he would be her ticket to the US.
My dad had grown up in foster homes after his mom left all the kids with his dad. When he did eventually live with his father, he was subject to daily physical and verbal lashings.
He wanted to marry my mom in hopes of starting a family with someone new. Someone who he thought needed him. He wanted something good in his life and thought this was the way to get it.
They didn't marry for love. They married for what they could get out of each other.
My mom's idea was to marry my dad, divorce him and then bring the rest of her family here, but then I came along. Whoops...
They did ok with each other for about 10 years. Loved each other, but not in love. The more my mom treated my dad like crap the more he wanted to do for her.
Eventually, their relationship fell apart. They stopped trying altogether and my dad started having affairs. I knew of none of them up until a year ago. As far as I know, my mom never cheated, but I do know that she has said that my dad could be with whoever he wants as long as he didn't divorce her.
So my dad bounces back and forth in between his house and an apartment that he built for himself. For the past year and a half, he's been seeing another woman. My mom knows and justs accepts it. She doesn't seem to care as long as my dad keeps paying the bills. It's very dysfunctional.
I never thought it was right for my dad to be with another woman while he was still married. I remember talking to him multiple times about just getting the divorce if he was that unhappy. Instead, he found someone else and I once again just put it away as if were nothing.
Only it wasn't nothing, and just as I have taken after my dad in so many other ways, I went ahead with my own affair. More dysfunction to add to the mix.
My dad provides for this woman financially and has been for the past year. He did it to help her out for a while. He recently told her he couldn't anymore and she became angry with him. Wow, an affair with an unhappy ending, big surprise.
I can't believe that at this point, that after my father has watched me go through my own affair and has witnessed the devastation that it has caused, that he still continues this lifestyle.
The worst part about all of this is that I no longer have the close relationship that I once had with my dad. For whatever reason, he still sympathizes with the OM, who happens to be his employee. I miss seeing my parents every day and being close to them, only I can't be around that toxic mess, especially when the OM is still very much a part of my dad's life. OM gets treated like family yet he is part of the mess too.
Oh to be able to turn back the clock...
I love my parents but I just don't understand them, and I refuse to let them continue to be a negative influence in my life.
Sorry that life has meant we have found each other here.
I had a brief emotional affair with a kiss on one occassion with a friend about ten years ago. I think I very nearly lived out the script I was given - and I understand how much work it took to stare that down.
Ten years later - here I am on the other side - so maybe I didn't re-write the script after all.
Now the intense and continuous screaming in my ears and lights in my eyes have subdued I am starting to get a fuller view.
In our session yesterday our therapist was talking about our animal like reactions to trauma. It seems so overstated to say 'I was traumtised by my husbands affair' but that I know it to be true.
He talk about flight, Fight (which I knew about) Freeze and Fold.
I know I fought like I never have when I first suspected but didn't "KNOW". When the A was confirmed - but he kept lying to me about the details - I couldn't fight it anymore and against my very nature - I folded into a ball of sensory overload. I have relived, triggered, had night terrors, become immobile, not functioned for days, stopped eating, eaten like I was starving, Had lights flash in my eyes for hours,and screatching in my ears.
There have been two other times in my life when i have had some (not all) of these symptoms. When I found my Mother with another man and during and after two car accidents 8 days apart.
During this period of TT my physical and psychological symptoms looked so extreme and yet he continued to lie, continued to play with my head, twist matters, place blame on me.
I am understanding that people who do this during and after their affairs are torturing their partners. this emotional abuse is dreadful for any person. For someone with a history like mine it was beyond a reckoning. It is hard to find words.
I feel like my healing is beginning to fuse. Untill that began i am not sure I could really look at the edge I was standing on and how close I was to it - the vertigo might overwhelm me.
I am still hyper sensitive to sound and light. I still find the ground rushing up to me in the middle of a business meeting. I still can't remember the forth last word that someone has said to me - all of a sudden - no matter how important the conversation is.
I have been faking it till I make though. I have pulled off the most successful annual event my work has ever had and pulled a major policy development. All while my world has nearly crumbled beneath my feet.
Sorry I rambling here. I just don't know where else to take my ramblings.
And I wanted to share how extreme my body, mind and soul have reacted to this - because maybe there is someone else reading who untill they saw this thought they were the only one.
The day after H and I got married, dad called and vented to me about mom's treatment of him. Repeated some of the horrible things she's said to him. I suggested MC, which dad scoffed at. He is the most proud man I know and would never sit down with a shrink and discuss problems or feelings. Ever. But the fact that he was reaching out to me for help with his hurt makes me think he must be hurting bad to even be putting it into words. Nevermind the fact that as his child (and a newlywed!!) that he shouldn't be dumping on me, and messing up the healthy parent-child relationship dynamic.
I am kind of stunned to be putting all the pieces together, but it sure seems like I figured out why my parents act the way they do. Wouldn't be in the least bit surprised to find out that my mom is posting on SI. Maybe I've even read her posts.... I've found myself looking at people's signatures and wondering if one of them is my mom... Wow.
Can you ask your dad straight forward about it?
I totally understand if you don't want actual confirmation. I wonder if your parents could learn from what you're going through.
Of course, some people would just rather be miserable together than alone. I'd never be able to live that way, but some people choose to.
(((hugs))) It must be difficult to watch two people you love hurt each other.
My sister and I grew up moving around with my mom. She and my dad divorced pretty early on in our lives. It meant us moving from our home and family in Germany to the United States where we needed to learn a new language and make due with very little family support.
My mom has been married three times. She has told me a little bit about her goings on, but a lot comes from family as I've gotten back in touch with them. Apparently she was pretty promiscuous when she was younger and it carried over into her first marriage. She cheated on my dad which led to some sort of violence. Honestly I don't remember it that well, I do have images of a man choking my mom and me getting my sister into another room. I don't know who he was, but my sister asserts that it was our dad. I'll probably never know for sure.
For a few years things actually went pretty smoothly here in the States. Mom was married to her second husband for around ten years before things went south. It was the early 2000s and our household got a computer with internet for the first time. It was this way that my mom met her third husband online through my aunt. He was a soldier (like my second dad) who worked with my uncle.
We visited my aunt and uncle (they lived in a different state) and while we were there I remember catching my mom sleeping in the same bed as this new guy she met online through my aunt. We went back home and not long thereafter my mom and step-dad divorced. We got to move again.
She married that new soldier, they've been together now for ten years. Until around five years ago when I went to college I still lived with them. I got a sick feeling every time my mom would get online, especially while step-dad 2 was gone at work. It didn't make matters any better that she was drinking more too. Those two are still together, so things must be going well, but I've got younger siblings who still live with that same uncertainty I did when I was there.
I don't like to make excuses for any of my behaviors; but sometimes I wonder if I was more affected than I thought by my mom's behavior. We were very close, she often called me her "sanity" and confided a lot in me. I never liked a lot of her behavior and promised I wouldn't emulate it, but it's easy to wonder.
My wife picked up a book recently, "Repeat After Me," which is basically a workbook for dealing with dysfunctional family issues. We started working through it together over the weekend. I think it'll be really helpful. It's funny how looking at concrete details like home dynamics can give us insights into how our parents affected who we are as adults.
I'm not currently in IC, though I have been in the past. My last session was over a year ago. Right now I'm looking at ACOA. I've been to a few meetings, but trying to find a time and place that works with my Fall class schedule.
I need to stick better to learning about myself. My wife has been wonderful when it comes to supporting me and even giving me ideas. Working on a journal, autobiography, and things like that are helping. I'm not crazy about the autobiography but it's probably what works the best. I go over the things from my childhood technically, then go back and add feelings and possible outcomes. I'm also working it up to where we are now. It makes me uncomfortable, but I think that's the nature of the beast. Makes me feel like it's getting us somewhere.
My uncle (My father's brother) just got caught cheating on his wife of 43 yrs. She kicked him out, and is DONE.
It has brought a lot of feelings up for me, about my dad's cheating.
I found some new things out about him, too, recently that....I'm just disappointed.
1) He had a good job as a security chief for a casino. He got fired for sexually harassing a female guard that worked for him. She said he texted her sexual things. He said he was "forwarding" off color jokes to "everyone" in his contacts, and didn't think anyone would be "offended".
My step mother---has either accepted his version, or has buried her head in the sand.
2) He apparently invited his second ex wife to camp, when my step mother can't go. My ex stepmother has refused any, and all advances.
3) He's on FB. He says he uses it to communicate with my half brother who lives in Kentucky. However, his friends list is about 80% women/girls.
Just the other day, I saw him comment on a "friend's" status SHE wrote "that awkward moment when you're chatting up the cute store clerk and he tells you there is some of your breakfast stuck in your teeth. HAHA I said "I did that on purpose so you'd have to talk to me!" FAIL!
My dad commented: "Well what about that cute security guard?"
SHE responded "Zip it E."
Yeah. This girl is in her mid 20's. My father is 60.
I sent him a FB message and told him I was disappointed in his behavior.
He said "It's none of your buisness. It's between me and my wife"
So I asked him "Does your wife know??"
Which is exactly what I thought.
She DOESN'T know. Now what do I do? Tell her?
I'm really torn. They have a 7 yr old. I don't want Dylan to grow up the way I did. Never seeing my dad.
But I don't want want my stepmother to live in a miserable marriage either.
Part of me thinks she knows what he's up to, and she doesn't care. But, then again....what if she is really clueless?
She knows his history. She also knows he has never accepted counseling or therapy.
He says "I go home every night, that's what counts."
And I feel like I'm getting to a point where I'm about to cut my dad out of my life again.
I just can't watch him self destruct, and destroy my stepmother, whom I am very fond of. ...and I don't want to see my baby brother suffer.
Thanks for letting me get this out
To this question:
Obviously I've been thinking a lot about my FOO since DDay, and what it might have had to do with my behavior.
My father (82) came out as gay/bi about 6 years ago, and although I don't have the whole story yet, it seems pretty clear he had extramarital relationships with men for years during my parent's marriage. I never spoke about it with my mother; my father said I couldn't, because he and she had agreed actually to never tell the kids (he told me and my brother; not sure my sister knows, even now).
My father claims that he and my mother had an agreement about this, and has implied that she had relationships outside of the marriage as well. I don't know. What I do know is that the end of her life was tragically sad... she was clearly deeply depressed, addicted to sleeping pills and painkillers (that my dad would go to Canada to get since they're prescription here in the US), homebound, barely ate, and basically starved herself to death, with my father just watching.
I cannot believe that his inability to care for her, and her basically slow suicide, weren't related somehow to his As.
And all this coincides very closely with when I shut down from my marriage and began emotionally abusing my wife. And, eventually, my A and the horrific pain I have caused her.
I'm so sorry for your mom's pain..and for yours.
For that I will be forever grateful to this site.
Wishing everyone a wonderful 2014 with much healing and happiness to all.