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User Topic: L.T.A.s - Can there be true remorse?
tigrislilium
♀ Member
Member # 39893
Default  Posted: 11:42 PM, August 18th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

(I was about to post this in Wayward Side when I realized it might be too harsh and it might get booted out...)

I am a BS, and this question keeps popping into my head when I read about Long Term Affairs...


How can you be remorseful NOW, and say you just didn't stop to consider the consequences of your actions... when you had months, even YEARS, to consider the gruesome repercussions?

It seems to me, after dealing with my WH for many months, and after reading on this forum for many months, that remorse from a WS only happens after they're caught. It's a clear pattern, and I just don't get it.

My WH would have kept on cheating - would have kept replacing or adding new APs as time wore on - if I hadn't FINALLY gotten a clue and a spine and some common sense.

We had been in MC for a few of the years during which he was cheating, yet it NEVER CAME UP. He could have dealt with it in his IC with the therapist, but he never addressed his cheating in all that time... If he truly was remorseful and hated and regretted his actions (as he claims he did while it was going on), why didn't he use that time with the counselor to work that issue out? Instead he just wasted thousands of our dollars paying someone to listen to him lie. He had a chance to fix it with the help of the IC while it was going on, yet he only decided to work on it after I CAUGHT HIM. ME.

I just don't get it. It doesn't add up to me. How can remorse be genuine if you were CONSCIOUS of your cruelty, yet kept choosing to be cruel knowing how badly it would damage at least one other person in your life?

Unless the biggest part of your remorse is, in fact, the getting caught part...

OR

Unless you simply never had seen true heartbreak until your LTA came to light and your BS's world suddenly went black and turned upside down, and only THEN could you feel remorse, because it was demonstrated to you vividly that another person's soul is able to be decimated by your (seemingly thoughtless) actions, and only until you were a witness to it were you able to wrap your brain around how to feel the remorse you feel now...

WSs are more than welcome to chime in here...


Me: BS, early 40s/ Him: WS, mid 40s
Married 2004
DD7
His affairs: 3 LTAs over at least 5 years, all of them overlapping at the time I found out
DDay: December 2011
Separated ~1 yr, recently reunited
attempting R

Posts: 64 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: East coast
sleepless34
♀ Member
Member # 40274
Default  Posted: 12:04 AM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I have been thinking about what remorse means. It is something you feel deeply, it is action. It is not words. It is not guilt. Remorse is wishing you could take it all back and feeling deeply sorry and empathetic.

Wow. I am really sorry for your pain. He conciously did it and was cruel because he is selfish. That is not love. That is childish. I am so sorry!!


Me BW- 40ish, awesome
Cheating scusband 40ish
2 kids, elementary school age
Bomb dropped Aug 4 out of nowhere...

Posts: 443 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: Hell
HardenMyHeart
♂ Member
Member # 15902
Default  Posted: 12:05 AM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I was about to post this in Wayward Side when I realized it might be too harsh

fyi...according to the forum guidelines, BS's are not allowed to start topics in the Wayward side.

How can you be remorseful NOW, and say you just didn't stop to consider the consequences of your actions...

My FWW had a nearly three year LTA. When I asked her a similar question, she felt that, "What I didn't know wouldn't hurt me". In other words, she just planned on living a double life and thought she could just compartmentalize and manage the situation.

that remorse from a WS only happens after they're caught.

That's correct. Only after the affair is exposed does the WS begin to realize what is at stake. They are so caught up in the fantasy of the affair, they sometimes become addicted to the excitement and thrill. Especially if the WS has become bored or disenchanted with their marriage.

He could have dealt with it in his IC with the therapist, but he never addressed his cheating in all that time

During the affair, my FWW was also lying to her IC as well. The thrill of the affair was so powerful, she would've lied to anyone that was a potential threat to stopping the affair. You have to remember, many affairs are not about the BS. That's why they are done in secret. The last person the WS wants to involve is the BS.

I just don't get it. It doesn't add up to me.

Because you believe the affair was about you. One of the things I learned is, you cannot control the actions of another. Your WH was not thinking about you...he was selfishly thinking about himself and the fantasy life of the affair. In his mind he was not being cruel. That's why he lied about the affair and tried to prevent you from finding out.

It's difficult for you to understand, because you don't think like a WS. For many people cheating is wrong, so they don't even consider it. You need to consider that some people don't think cheating is wrong, as long as they can get away with it.

I strongly recommend the book, Not "Just Friends" by Shirley Glass. This book will help provide tremendous insight into the psychology of affairs. This book is also a great first step to healing after the betrayal of a LTA.

I do understand what you are saying. I am so sorry for the pain you are going through.

[This message edited by HardenMyHeart at 12:10 AM, August 19th (Monday)]


Me: BH, Her: FWW - Long Term EA/PA
d-day: June 25, 2007
Married 30 years, Reconciled

Inner peace begins the moment you choose not to allow another person or event to control your emotions.


Posts: 5696 | Registered: Aug 2007
tigrislilium
♀ Member
Member # 39893
Default  Posted: 12:13 AM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Oh, thanks, HardenMyHeart - I even read over the Wayward Side rules and I guess I completely overlooked the rule that BSs aren't allowed to post there... derp!

And thanks for your insightful response.


Me: BS, early 40s/ Him: WS, mid 40s
Married 2004
DD7
His affairs: 3 LTAs over at least 5 years, all of them overlapping at the time I found out
DDay: December 2011
Separated ~1 yr, recently reunited
attempting R

Posts: 64 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: East coast
FoolontheHill
♂ Member
Member # 40225
Default  Posted: 5:38 AM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I've been wondering what remorse looks like too and how to deal with the lack of it. I wish I had an answer for you. I can tell you that you are not alone.


Me BH 46
WW 42

Dday 1: 10/20/2010 -- 3 month physical affair
Dday2: 7/7/2013 -- 3 year emotional affair but I think it was more.


Posts: 83 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: Florida
mindisgone
♀ Member
Member # 17772
Default  Posted: 5:58 AM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Been pondering this myself a lot lately.

It's difficult for you to understand, because you don't think like a WS. For many people cheating is wrong, so they don't even consider it. You need to consider that some people don't think cheating is wrong, as long as they can get away with it.

I don't think that's quite accurate, ALL cheaters know it's wrong.. To tigris point, he like my WH, certainly knew that I would see it as wrong. And he also knew it would hurt deeply.

I dunno, there are tens of thousands on SI, but I have come to believe that true remorse is extremely rare.
I do think a lot of cheaters , once caught, ARE sorry for the pain they've caused. But I think even more feel sorry for themselves, now THEY have to face the negative consequences.

I think that may be especially true for cheaters in LTA's. They are often quite comfortable with deceit.

I guess from what I read here and even observing through the years other cheaters I've know or known of in the community, I think the two thing are separate in their minds, the "fun" they had in the A and the pain and misery it's outing has caused.
After all that's the way they have lived for years, and some for lifetimes. Just my opinion.


too long a sacrifice can make a stone of the heart..

Posts: 682 | Registered: Jan 2008
catlover50
♀ Member
Member # 37154
Default  Posted: 3:39 PM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My H had an LTA and was not considering the consequences at all. He did not think of me and was an expert compartmentalizer. He says if he had truly stopped to think he never would have done it; the OW, the sex, even the ego boost were not even close to worth what he stood to lose. He just neglected to think about it. Of course his pathology may be worse than some.

He did regret the A, actually early on, and way before he got caught. But that was because the OW was needy, demanding, insecure, talked constantly and mediocre in bed. He felt trapped by her, since she was threatening, but now realizes that his compulsions played a role too--he likely could have let it die years earlier since the whole thing was so toxic and unsatisfactory to them both. I am actually glad that she was such a piece of work--she has helped leave such a bad taste in his mouth.

But it was seeing the effect on me that truly shook him up and led to "remorse". I read this time and again here and it boggles my mind. How can any WS not get that their spouse will be devastated? That they run a real risk of losing everything? That's the fantasy world that has been mentioned. My H was not caught up by the OW, but by his own selfish, twisted, dark "needs" that effectively blinded him to reality.

The question now is... is that knowledge, and the hard earned self knowledge, enough to prevent going down that self-destructive path again? He swears it is; we have seen far too often on here that it is not. All I know is that he can NEVER again profess ignorance. The next wayward text is the last.



Dday -9/24/2012
Reconciling

Posts: 1772 | Registered: Oct 2012 | From: northeast
libertyrocks
♀ Member
Member # 38924
Default  Posted: 3:44 PM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Bingo, HardenMyHeart,

They are so caught up in the fantasy of the affair, they sometimes become addicted to the excitement and thrill

It had zero to do with us and a 1,000% with their own shortcomings. Pretty pathetic, huh. My favorite line: It's not my fault he's broken because I'm awesome." I tell myself that every day.

But, boy do I feel your pain, frustration, and confusion.


Me-BW 36. STBXH-35,Recovering Alcoholic, M6yrs T13. Boys 2 & 4 1/2.
DDay #1 Nov,2012. 1 1/2 year false R & TT. 10 OW PA's 1LTA (W lied to) 3 years.
S Nov, 2013 again Jan,2014
Filed for D Feb,2014.

Posts: 962 | Registered: Apr 2013 | From: So Cal, baby. :)
sleepless34
♀ Member
Member # 40274
Default  Posted: 6:22 PM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I am still thinking about this.

Yesterday, My WH came to the house with my BIL to get some more of his stuff as he has now secured an apartment.

We used BIL to moderate a discussion about some logistical items regarding the finances and the kids and the next steps. I needed someone else there to support me because WH is so F*in' nuts these days I cant even have a rational conversation with him and I knew BIL would back me up as I am being rational. I got agreement on pretty much everything, except was shocked that he already (2 weeks since Dday) had looked in to filing the papers. He wants to be done done done.

I was advised to sit there like a robot and just talk business (therapist/lawyer) and I did okay. He could not even look at me. He kept looking sideways, like guilty, feeling bad- but NO real REMORSE. Kinda like "it is what it is, I am being honest about what I want now, it is this OW, and let's move forward amiably..." Well, WTF, my whole life just got upended, so that is not currenlty possible dumbass.

He had a hard time understanding why I changed the locks. Well, because I don't know you. Everything is fine and then BAM one day you have a whole other life and you don't love me and you want out. Lots of sordid details about the person he is in the affair with- met in sex chat room, skank in an open marraige, then they feel "in love" and her husband left her...so thus the timing of why he told me finally. She was in my house, OF COURSE I CHANGED THE LOCKS.

It was so crazy, bc he says "I am now telling the truth, and being honest." Like he should get points for that. He is being honest with himself and now "going for it" with this OW. Honest in saying "I don't want to be this marraige and I want OW in my future"

Again, I DO NOT GET IT. I was his wife, partner, friend, co-parent. We got along really well. People envied our marraige. HE never said he wasn't happy. HE was really quite nice to me and acted like he really liked our life. Seemed pretty happy....so even if you are not "in love" with me, I am still family and mother of his children and how do you do this to me? Like....oops, I just feel in love with some one else by accident and I am gonna go do that now.....

How do you walk away like it was nothing? Not that I would take you back- but I am trying to understand how you could do that to a person you have loved and built a life with for 15 years????

During the meeting he only looked at me once. His eyes seems like dead reptile eyes. He is shut off emotionally, or only concerned about his own shit. My BIL said, he doesn't seem to understand the catastrophic effect of this. He is listening to no one. No one can get through. He is just trying to rush the process through and be done with the marraige. Everyone that knows us, him, me is baffled??

Are all the cheaters so cold? How can someone have no REMORSE?? I really want to understand how this kind of shit happens. I thought my life sounded like a bad movie, and then there are all of you going through the same thing....so what is the deal???


Me BW- 40ish, awesome
Cheating scusband 40ish
2 kids, elementary school age
Bomb dropped Aug 4 out of nowhere...

Posts: 443 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: Hell
Ostrich80
Member
Member # 34827
Default  Posted: 6:33 PM, August 19th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My ws knew it was wrong, said he knew the entire time it was wrong. He didn't think he would get caught. As HMH ^^^^ said up there...he is great at compartmentalizing ..he could have gone in forever with a double life....in fact he still is. The fact he went underground proved to me, he's not R, he's sorry I found out and now he has to feel guilty for destroying his family and our M. He does feel bad for it but apparently his "feel good" meter with her far outweighs the feel bad with me. When I do kick him out, he will cry and beg like last time, but would do it again...history proved that

And speaking of history...the thing with a LTA..now he has a lengthy history with ow..8 yrs is my guesstimation . I'm sure they have their special dates and anniversaries and such..so he's gotten into quite a pickle.

[This message edited by Ostrich80 at 6:38 PM, August 19th (Monday)]


BS..me
WS..him
Been with him over half my life
4kid
DD1 10-01-09 DD2 02-12-12 discovered it never ended
OW..nothing special. Just your average skank
Status..#$%@????

Posts: 5172 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: midwest
Topic Posts: 10

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