I see the hurt and I understand the emotions but its hard to see her this way because of what I did. I just want to know is how do I not mess up anymore.
You have to drop your defenses with her. Easier said than done, I know, but it's absolutely necessary.
I am not sure how far out some of you may be from Dday but I am almost at 1 year. I was horribly hurt by my H's A and the spiral I found my self in was uncontrollable. I suffered from 10 different PTSD symptoms, the worst being never ending movies in my brain, severe panic attacks and horribly life like nightmares. I was almost admitted to the psyc ward just for my own protection for a while but a massive dose of Anti D meds finally levelled out my depression and many of my PTSD symptoms.
I am sympathizing with all of your plights. The number one hardest thing for me to overcome was not the trust issue but the fact that I was not sure how to believe anything my husband said to me. In my discovery I found hundreds of texts and emails, pictures, receipts, dates and graphic details of most of the last 2 years of hubby's A . This is not from a man who has a sexual deviancy problem, this from a loving caring individual.
The meds really helped me get to a more positive place. What helped more though was my H's constant, never ending pursuit of helping me get better. For me it was the small things he started doing. Unloading the clean dishes from the dishwasher. Helping with dinner without asking. Making reservations for dinner and surprising me...cuddling me in the middle of the night when I awoke from one of my many nightmares. Take a look at the little things.....the things that say I want to help you, I am here for you.
The second most important thing he did for me was read. The best book we shared together was was " After the Affair, healing the pain and rebuilding the trust after a partner has been unfaithful" by Janis Abrahms. This book above all others was incredibly helpful to both of us. It is written to help both partners through this hell. I read it first and highlighted passages that pertained to me and us. I also made notes in the margin and asked questions when appropriate. Then he read it, read my comments and added his own. The fact that we did the reading on our own in private helped us to bridge the gap of hard Those hard to have conversations that hurt both of you in the beginning. At the start my WH's answers were Brief. But as he got into the book and he saw I was not attacking him nor was the book his answers became longer and more descriptive. Eventually we just started openly communicating about each item. It was a huge break through for us. The book is really well written and is not a how to in the usual sense. It is filled with clinical examples from over 30 years of dealing with infidelity.
The last was he stayed in IC.....I even invited him into some of my IC sessions so he could have a better look at what I was dealing with.
I have come far enough I this process to know remorse and true wanting to fix the broken. I saw this is each of your posts. One day I hope your spouses can come to the point I am now at and validate that you too have a huge mountain of pain to deal with and sort through.
Lastly...think of what might make your spouse feel safe and try and provide that. If you travel, give them your schedule, check in A LOT, send pictures so they know you are telling them the truth. If you entertain a lot for business text before you go to dinner, and text when you are done.....these small things start to create safety for your spouse. Right now they don't feel safe at all. They don't know what is real and what isn't.
My husband would also probably add that you should pay attention to triggers. Let them tell you about them immediately when they happen. My mind was so inventive that most of what I thought was real in the A was so far off base. The mind is a terrible thing. It takes your hurt spouses to terrible places without them being able to control it. If you can stop their minds you can slow down the pain.
I sure hope this helps.
[This message edited by TxsT at 7:24 PM, August 14th (Wednesday)]
Through thick and thin we will survive but he gets only one shot at it!
The drop the defenses comment is interesting to me from ThoughtIKnewYa. Care to elaborate on that any more
IDK what TIKY meant, but as a wayward I'll say: it's not easy to sit and take it when someone is telling you that you're wrong and you hurt them.
Naturally when someone confronts us, we go on the defensive. It's human nature.
When she needs to vent at you, when she needs to be angry--don't get defensive. Don't take control. Listen, accept, and apologize.
MCJLM: Thank you for posting and I can also say I relate to how you feel.
These are not affair related per se, social stuff, but in my world, everything is affair related because of this mess I've put us in.. It causes major setbacks and my spouse communicates that he does not feel safe with me and does not trust my decision making.
What I fail to see is that I stripped every sense of trust, self worth, confidence, security from this man who has never done a thing wrong.He still sees many parts of that evil person who did this to him.
I tend to take safety for granted because I'm comfortable in my boundaries and actions, NOW. But I have to remeber that for a long time, I did not respect boundaries whatsoever.
TxsT: Thank you for your insight, it does help because reading your response I know that I can do a lot more than what I am. I have started to do the little things as well but not consistence enough. One promise I know I didnt keep doing is reading to my W, started off strong and faded and made excuses when it stopped. I am starting back on it again and this time I will be more consistence on it. Thank You