For me, the strength came from a desire to have a good life. I wanted to feel safety, love and trust in a relationship again and I knew I could never have that with XH. It was not so much about saying that XH did not deserve a second chance but about saying, I did.
Strength also came from the realization that a guy that could cheat on me, gaslight me, etc, was a guy more than capable of screwing me over financially. Knowing that I needed to secure my financial stability for myself and my infant, sent me scrambling to consults with attorneys, so I could file and receive the protections thereof.
Strength to you.
You recognize that maybe he wants to stay married - but married doesn't mean the same thing to him as it does to you. You got married and envisioned growing old together, your 50th wedding anniversary - a lifelong love. He was scoping out Craig's list before your first anniversary...
You recognize that love doesn't mean the same thing to him as it does to you. You are not compatible. The good news is you are still young enough to have a golden anniversary but it will only likely happen with someone else...
I'm sorry, movingbackwards, but cheating in the first year of marriage - hunting to cheat and to the degree you describe... I mean, what is there invested in the marriage to save? Save yourself!
KEEP POSTING - you CAN do this. ((Hugs))
Above all, be the heroine, not the victim. - Nora Ephron
It is our choices...that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.
- J. K. Rowling
This above all: to thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man, ~ Shakespeare
The other man showed so much love and care and respect for me that I realized what I never had in my marriage and what I would never have in my marriage because if my WH couldn`t show me this in 15 years before DDay no miracle on earth would convince me that he would change that much even with the best efforts to reconcile.
Although I struggled with many issues after separating I never once really missed my WH as a partner because he just never was one in the first place.
I still mourn our marriage every day, our broken family , the sometimes good old times, miss my sweet in-laws incredibly- and yet I know I am better off without him.
The other man is still in my life, we were separate for six months because I had to sort out a lot of emotional issues on my own and get the feeling that I am strong on my own, we are back together now and yes, life is good, but after everything I went through I know I will always be fine on my own.
Much like those of us who start off trying to stay for the kids and end up leaving for the kids.
There's only so long you can do CPR on a dead M. I was lucky in that his total lack of remorse was so transparent despite his pretty words that I really had no other choice. When it came down to it it was either keep trying to save that dead M or start saving myself and my girls. I chose us. I chose me. Perhaps for the first time since that relationship started.
I have found that I had the strength in spades, it was courage I was lacking. I let my fears numb and immobilise me. I reverted my childhood coping mechanisms.
[This message edited by StrongButBroken at 5:21 PM, September 11th (Wednesday)]
Also, when I educated myself about the stages of CHANGE!
There are 5 stages of change:
1. Precontemplation is the stage at which there is no intention to change behavior in the foreseeable future. Many individuals in this stage are unaware or underaware of their problems.
2. Contemplation is the stage in which people are aware that a problem exists and are seriously thinking about overcoming it but have not yet made a commitment to take action.
3. Preparation is a stage that combines intention and behavioral criteria. Individuals in this stage are intending to take action in the next month and have unsuccessfully taken action in the past year.
4. Action is the stage in which individuals modify their behavior, experiences, or environment in order to overcome their problems. Action involves the most overt behavioral changes and requires considerable commitment of time and energy.
5. Maintenance is the stage in which people work to prevent relapse and consolidate the gains attained during action. For addictive behaviors this stage extends from six months to an indeterminate period past the initial action.
Also, by finding my humor.
How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
Gather your facts. Look at finances, new places to live, and educate yourself about Divorce in your state. Break it down. Take one step each day.
I want to respond to your mention of guilt. I didn't get the chance to even consider R. My XWH was remorseless and left immediately to start his new life with OW. So I can only imagine the complicated feelings that come over you when you're in that position.
JMO, but he forfeited any right to be able to continue with your marriage the moment he decided to cheat. At that point, the decision whether or not to continue became yours and yours alone. Some things really are not forgivable, and IMO infidelity is one of them. I have great respect for those who try to R, but honestly I don't know how they do it. It's got to be agony.
Don't forgot who drove the bus to the point where it is now. HE did. And there is nothing wrong with you saying that you want to get off. You shouldn't feel guilty that you've come to realization that what he did was a deal-breaker for the marriage. It was still HIS action that broke it, not yours.
Hang in there!
"You've always had the power, my dear.You just had to learn it for yourself." Glinda, Wizard of Oz
To finally say, I deserve better than this?
When you're ready to step out of Ambivalence and finally make a choice, I suggest you check out your library's copy of "Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay: A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Decide Whether to Stay In or Get Out of Your Relationship" by Mira Kirshenbaum.
She provides a list of 36 questions that helped me decide.
It is tough, though, to process everything that has happened. It may take time some more time for you to do that. More time would be OK.
You are fully within your rights to say, "Hey, look. I need more time. I may not be able to stay married to you. Right now, I don't know." Then, take whatever time you need and see how he acts.
It's also worth pointing out that for some, infidelity is simply a deal breaker. You may still be figuring out if you are one of those people.
Please don't be hard on yourself. Give yourself the permission to be ambivalent, if that's how you feel. It's ok. You've been traumatized and are still processing what has happened and what you need/want to do about it.
You're very young. It may not feel like it to you, but you're kind of in the driver's seat here. I'd probably vote to drive away from the asshole, and as you're driving breath a huge sigh of relief. But, that's me.
Over the past 9 months, I have found a reserve of strength I never thought I had. He told me to leave the house and I did. I woke up each morning and somehow got through each day. Some days, I spent in a ball on the floor, sobbing my heart out. Other days, stomped around in my living room with so much rage, I could not see straight. Other days, quiet, contemplative. Some how, I am where I am today. Feeling stronger, feeling whole.
How I did it? Breathe through each moment. Be where my feet are. Talking to friends and family. Posting and reading post here. Pray. Walks. Long bubble baths. Honoring myself - honoring my feelings. Taking care of myself the best way I knew how. Doing the things that scared me - talking to attorneys, expressing my needs, living my life.
Taking each step as it came.
You have no idea the strength that is within, the courage you possess. it is there, you will uncover it.
One of the big realizations that I still work on is giving thought to myself as a person now, where before I was so devoted that most of my thoughts and time went to my marriage and family. I got lost in that life and was in love with that life so much so that he steam rolled right over me and my life and our child's.
Other realizations have come as my BS fog lifts...a mix of posts already here. One thing that was big was the idea that he had zero respect for me and was also mocking the very life that we had worked 20 years to build. He was mocking what I stood for and believed in and he was mocking me and our child, as well.
I think, finally, or also, the realization that we were living two totally different lives and behind my back, over time, he had changed from being what I thought was my best friend and confidant besides loved one...he was now basically out to get me. And I want very much to be taken seriously as a person, which,, by his actions, he did not. This idea really pushed me forward, for it was only I living the marriage, but no one told me.
ETA that as I learned more and more about his double life, other feelings took over me and grew...disgust and a realization that because of all of his activity (different women), he didn't really have respect for anyone.
And someone that could abandon his own child and bring strangers to our home...my respect for him went out the window, then.
I'm so sorry that you are having this happen in your life but I also agree with the posts about your having no children - it may not seem like it now, as people told me, but once the fog starts to clear maybe you would be able to rebuild the life you had before and even find someone who will show you the respect you deserve.
[This message edited by Ashland13 at 8:33 PM, September 12th (Thursday)]
The times, they are'a changin'! -Bob Dylan
There's only so long you can do CPR on a dead M.
Thank you for this. I'm an ER doc and can really relate to a senselessly prolonged code yet that's what I've been doing!