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User Topic: I Don't Remember
self-rescuer
♀ Member
Member # 35059
Default  Posted: 8:02 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

When I kicked xwh out of our house because he couldn't decide who he loved more - me or the OW - I asked what his girlfriend thought about him being out of our home. His response was "I don't remember if I told her".

Even that early in the misery I remember laughing at his statement. He was still banging her but he couldn't remember if he told her we had separated.

So, nope, I never handled the I can't remember statement well!!


BW 53
WXH 55
married 26 yrs
D-Day 9-15-11

Divorce final 3-13-13

Just trust yourself, then you will know how to live.
~ Goethe


Posts: 490 | Registered: Mar 2012 | From: the south
Expect Delays
♀ Member
Member # 23981
Default  Posted: 8:45 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think some people cultivate a poor memory. If they don't remember, they don't have to take responsibility, feel bad, or whatever emotion or behavior they are desperate to avoid.

I have witnessed the "poor memory" coping mechanism in behaviors not related to an affair, not just with my husband, but also my dad, my grandmother, and, oh, so many others.

Do I believe that my husband "couldn't remember" in the sense that he didn't want to admit certain things to me? Absolutely. I'd be naÔve to believe otherwise.

However, I also believe that many things he simply couldn't remember because he never wanted to remember. Could I have walked him slowly and determinedly through the previous twenty years and extracted more information from him? Probably. And I probably did to an extent. (It is rather amazing how much I have forgotten about the initial months.)

I think, in the end, for me, I just had other battles to win. We all have to choose which battles are the ones we need to win, which battles are worth the scars. And this one simply wasn't for me. For others, it is.


A great name for a new country song: If I'd Shot You Sooner, I'd Be Out of Jail By Now.

Posts: 710 | Registered: May 2009
SisterMilkshake
♀ Member
Member # 30024
Default  Posted: 8:56 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My memory sucks. My FWH memory sucks. We both have always had this problem. I mean, we can remember things in general, but the nitty gritty details, yeah, not so much.
I remember first kisses. I remember first caresses. I remember encounters. I remember where we went.
See, I don't remember those kinds of details. I don't even remember some of their names. (I am the BS and these are men before I met my FWH.)

FWH tries to answer my questions and does the best he can. When he tells me he doesn't remember something, I tend to believe him.

Some people do have poor memories.

[This message edited by SisterMilkshake at 8:57 AM, September 26th (Thursday)]


BW (me) 50ish FWH 50ish
Married 34 years, 3 children
d-day 3/10 LTA (4 yrs./fucking & flirting)

"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak!" ~ Homer Simpson


Posts: 9404 | Registered: Nov 2010 | From: The Great White North USA
Tred
♂ Member
Member # 34086
Default  Posted: 8:59 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

In general, I guess you'd have to look at your spouses body of work in the past to determine if the "I don't remember" line is being evasive or honest. If your spouse has a history of poor memory, then it is more likely that the line isn't a copout - but if they previously had fairly decent recall of events, and have affair amnesia, then they are probably evading telling you the truth.


Married: 17 years (14 @JFO)
D-Day: 11/09/11
"Ohhhhh...shut up Tred!" - NOT the official SI motto (DS)

Posts: 3741 | Registered: Dec 2011
Herkemeyer
♂ Member
Member # 36910
DOH!  Posted: 9:20 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My WW can spit out damn near any grammar rule of the English language, but she can't remember shit about the A. HMMMM...

[This message edited by Herkemeyer at 9:21 AM, September 26th (Thursday)]


BH-43
(F?)WW-39 (neznayou)
DDay-08/10/12 TT for 18 Months (I think)
Married 19 years

Posts: 98 | Registered: Sep 2012 | From: Colorado
Camalus
♂ Member
Member # 40199
Default  Posted: 9:33 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

WW has an excellent memory.

She can recite citations verbatim from different things she has read; she can close her eyes, visualize then describe places we have been.

A few weeks ago DD said something about her sweet-sixteen party (that was 15 years ago) WW remembered details DD had forgotten including the names of the people that attended.


MeĖBS age 61
Her -- WS age 59
Married for 34 years
One child, 30yrs

Her 'A' 1994(?) through 1998
D-Day 7/4/2013 Yes, I didn't find out for almost 15 years... but the pain is just as bad as if she were with him last week.


Posts: 105 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: Near Houston Texas
tushnurse
♀ Member
Member # 21101
Default  Posted: 10:30 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Yah, "I don't remember" is BS 98% of the time. You need to have a clear boundary on this. It was expressed one time, and I was so angry If I'd of had a weapon handy I would have used it. I then said, I will not tolerate that as an anwer just to get you off the hook, if you respond with I don't remember one, expect me to respond with the assumption that you are lying, or hiding something, and in turn get really pissy about everything.
Also be prepared for a whole bunch more questions.

Now my H is notoriously horrible for remembering things. So even with finding out about the A while it was ongoing, there were some real things he couldn't remember, however, he was able to give generalizations, and enough information if he didn't remember specifics.

In your situation, there may honestly be details she may not remember, being in the A fog, telling so many lies to cover her tracks, it gets confused in the mind. The important thing to remember is the fine details really won't matter, it's the feelings that accompany those things that are in question.


Me: FBS
Him: FWS
Kids: 15 & 17
Married for 22 years now, was 16 at the time. .
D-Day Sept 26 2008
Fully R'd, and Happy Happy Happy

Posts: 7798 | Registered: Oct 2008 | From: St. Louis
Eudaimonia
♀ Member
Member # 32445
Default  Posted: 11:01 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

In general, I guess you'd have to look at your spouses body of work in the past to determine if the "I don't remember" line is being evasive or honest. If your spouse has a history of poor memory, then it is more likely that the line isn't a copout - but if they previously had fairly decent recall of events, and have affair amnesia, then they are probably evading telling you the truth.

This^ definitely.

In our case, I got a LOT of "I don't remembers". Then, WH suffered a TBI a few months ago. A bad one. After that, I would have been willing to buy the "I don't remember." It would have made sense. HOWEVER, not just one, but a TEAM of neuropsychologists informed me that that is not possible. He DOES remember and he DOES owe it to me to tell me the truth about what has been going on throughout the entire duration of our marriage. I would have given him a free pass on the memory thing, but according to the pros, not applicable and certainly not healthy.

Even more recently, I have received, from WS, a 150+ page explanation (RPP) of his "whys" and "who he is/was", "how he's changed", "what he's learned from therapy", etc., which is awesome, it is. But, it also confirms, in his own words, that he DID and DOES remember everything. He's now working on his 15 or 16th version of disclosure (which was NOT included in his explanation), so we'll see what happens there. I'm skeptical.

He does not use the words "I don't remember" anymore. I do let it slide when he uses the phrase, "I am still trying to untangle the mess of wires in my head." -for now.


So long, and thanks for all the fish!

Posts: 472 | Registered: Jun 2011
uncertainone
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Member # 28108
Default  Posted: 11:15 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My memory sucks

Yep. If I say I don't remember, I don't. But then again I didn't remember our anniversary date...21st 22nd always picked the wrong one.

I do remember telling the OP I knew why his eyes were brown. Turns out they were green. Oh well, my bad.

If they don't remember, they don't have to take responsibility, feel bad, or whatever emotion or behavior they are desperate to avoid

Not always true at all. I may not remember events but I ALWAYS remember feelings and if I feel like shit about something I will absolutely remember the behavior as a whole even if the details are shit.

Memory is very unreliable, y'all do realize this right? The brain lies to us all the time. That's why eye witness accounts are so horribly inaccurate and people were/are rotting in jail based on someones faulty memory.

I remembered a very horrific memory from childhood. Still have the scar. Was quite certain what I was wearing and what the weather was. Found an old picture...6th b day. Nope. Completely different outfit and it was raining. Doesn't change what happened at all. Wish it could.


Me: 37

'til the roof comes off. 'til the lights go out. 'til my legs give out, can't shut my mouth


Posts: 6795 | Registered: Mar 2010
Tred
♂ Member
Member # 34086
Default  Posted: 11:22 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

UO, I agree that memory is fallible - that's why I'd look at their previous behavior. Each individual is different, and confusing dates isn't "I don't remember", it's remembering wrong details. It's when a spouse that normally has decent recall can't remember what would normally be obvious details is when I start to believe they are engaging in selective amnesia. It's like the question "did you jump out of an airplane together" shouldn't be a "I don't remember" question. Did you take nude videos/naked pictures/sext, etc are things I would say they would probably remember. Especially binary questions - did you have dinner together versus what was your side of vegetables.


Married: 17 years (14 @JFO)
D-Day: 11/09/11
"Ohhhhh...shut up Tred!" - NOT the official SI motto (DS)

Posts: 3741 | Registered: Dec 2011
uncertainone
♀ Member
Member # 28108
Default  Posted: 11:24 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Great article about this. Scientists are actually trying to find a way to re-write it even more to help with trauma

http://www.healthline.com/health-news/mental-memory-is-unreliable-and-it-could-be-worse-091313


Me: 37

'til the roof comes off. 'til the lights go out. 'til my legs give out, can't shut my mouth


Posts: 6795 | Registered: Mar 2010
confused615
♀ Member
Member # 30826
Default  Posted: 11:26 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I know I didn't expect WH to remember every.little.detail.

And..I do realize a lot depends on if it was a LTA,ONS,etc. I would imagine those in a LTA would have trouble remembering every time they had sex with AP..and other details.

But when a BS asks...where did you have sex? Did you have sex in this position? Did you give her/him oral? Did you have sex in our home/car/bed? Does your buddy know? Why did you tell that girl on craigslist that you were looking for a girl in the same area you work? Etc..etc...etc..THOSE things? yeah..those things are things I think most WS's would remember.

I was told "I don't remember" for two years. Then it was,"It's been 2 years..it's been too long!! I don't know!!"

Um...until a few months ago. I was lucky enough to watch my WH "get it." Something happened,and since then,he has been a changed man.

Oh! And wouldn't you know it? He suddenly has had a great improvement with his memory.



BS(me)41
FWH 45
4 kids..21,20,11,9
M: June 2001
D-Day: 8/10/10
Status: Happily Reconciled.

..that feeling you get in your stomach, when you heart's broken. It's like all the butterflies just died.


Posts: 7137 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: Indiana
Lovedyoumore
♀ Member
Member # 35593
Default  Posted: 11:30 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My sister and I have very vivid detailed memory brains. I can remember snippets of my first birthday, not just the party, but small details like sitting in the high chair in front of the window air conditioner and freezing. When my H started with the I do not remember crap I refused to believe him. He had just lived out his fantasy and he did not remember?

I was right. He later told me he did remember but was too ashamed to admit his actions. It took way too long for him to "get his memory back".


Me 52
WH 52
Married 30+ years
Together trying to R

I tell people I am tired but really my heart is broken and I am sad.


Posts: 1393 | Registered: May 2012 | From: Southern, y'all.
uncertainone
♀ Member
Member # 28108
Default  Posted: 11:36 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I can remember snippets

Sure. You might be very surprised to find out that hard coded memory was completely false. And yeah, that does happen quite often. The brain fills in our "holes" using past events and patterns to do so.

What is remembered may not be so, "well, of course now they do".

Bottom line. We know what our choices were, why those choices were a hot mess for us and others and how we fix them. If we don't, whether we said xyz, blew someone on a couch on Tues doesn't change a thing.


Me: 37

'til the roof comes off. 'til the lights go out. 'til my legs give out, can't shut my mouth


Posts: 6795 | Registered: Mar 2010
Eudaimonia
♀ Member
Member # 32445
Default  Posted: 11:51 AM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I may not remember events but I ALWAYS remember feelings and if I feel like shit about something I will absolutely remember the behavior as a whole even if the details are shit.

This is soooo true here, too. And, well-for me-, I think that it's fair that WH (bare minimum) comes clean on the behaviors so that I can make an informed assessment of what I am dealing with. (I keep saying "I" because I don't want to speak for anyone else's situation). I don't need explicit details, nor do I expect him to remember what any of his OW or OM were wearing, etc. I know that he did not care, so why should he remember? But, completely forgetting years of weekly(?) hookups with a single OW? How do you forget entire years of sex with one person? I 'think' I would buy it if it were just random hookups on C/L or something, but then why "just" the one?
None of it adds up.



So long, and thanks for all the fish!

Posts: 472 | Registered: Jun 2011
Razor
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Member # 16345
Default  Posted: 12:36 PM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

If I can remember these types of details from between 35 and 43 years ago, does anyone really expect me to accept ďI canít rememberĒ as an answer to a question?

Itís not like Iím asking the exact date and time for something. Itís not like Iím asking for her to give me a verbatim recital of a particular conversation.

My WW can recite the entire litany of missteps blunders and literally every single thing I ever did in our relationship that she felt was wrong or hurtful.

And yet if I ask her which beach by the seashore they went to and referred to as *their beach* she doesnt remember. If I ask her if they went here or there she doesnt remember.

I have come to think that *I dont remember* is the perfect shield they hide their affair activity behind. My WW knows I needed this information to heal. I have told her that many times. And yet she hides behind *I dont remember*.

All any of us can do is guess why our WS hides this information from us. My guess is that the reason my WW keeps these secrets is 1 of or a combination of 2 reasons.

1 is she wants to avoid consequences of her actions. That she did a thing that I will never get over. Consequences can be her own feeling bad because of my pain (its never really my pain she wants to avoid IMO but her feeling bad because of it) OR that I will possibly have enough and file for D.

2 is she wants to shield her precious memories of love and romance with OM. I have seen a (very) few of their letters to each others. They were in love. Deeply in love with each other. I suppose there are some happy memories she still has of being with OM. And saying *I dont remember* protects those memories from becoming ugly when they are associated with the consequences of telling the truth.

I know now that I will NEVER get those answers. How do I live with that?

I gave up wanting to know. I came to realize that those things she hides behind that shield of *I dont remember* dont really matter to me. She can have those seedy steamy nasty memories all she wants. They are hers. She can have them and keep them as she chooses. I dont want them soiling my life.

Not knowing of course prevents my forgiving her because how can I forgive when I dont know WHAT I am forgiving. If I can live with not forgiving then she can live with not being forgiven.

In the end I have moved on. We are still together. Still M. But I dont love her any more. We are friends that have a past together. We enjoy many shared interests and of course have our children and grand children in common. We also maintain financial stability by remaining M.

How do I deal with the *I dont remember*? I gave up and said f**k it and moved on with my life.


Forgive and forget = Relive and regret.


Posts: 3361 | Registered: Sep 2007
stupidgirlme
♀ New Member
Member # 38778
Default  Posted: 1:42 PM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I would have to agree with the responses that I have read so far.

"I don't know" seems to be the protection they need. It's a way to not have to answer any question that will make them uncomfortable.

When I called the ho, she pulled that on me as well, and I called her on it; "you can't remember what you told him just last week!?"

I find it funny that my WH has mentioned to her that his excellent memory is a curse because he remembers every hurtful thing he has said to her (no mention of my hurt, of course) but that same excellent memory doesn't remember if they were in contact three days ago or not.

From my personal experience, when they play the Ignorant Card, it's always to cover up something they want to keep hidden.

So sorry you are dealing with this!


~~I love listening to lies when I know the truth~~

Posts: 47 | Registered: Mar 2013 | From: Florida
kickboxer
♀ Member
Member # 39858
Default  Posted: 3:09 PM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

"I don't remember" could eat me alive.

He has a very good memory. His brain is full of facts about this and that -- I refuse to play Trivial Pursuit with him, because he just seems to know so much crap! From sports stats to old song lyrics, he's never given me any reason to believe he wouldn't be capable of remembering the details that nearly ripped our family to shreds.

And so it is what it is...for now, anyway. I've found myself revisiting the early days of my discovery, and things that didn't seem important then, make more sense and feel more important now. I'm realizing the magnitude of some of the information I previously thought was inconsequential.

I have no doubt that, one day, I'll work through this phase and be left with all his "I don't knows"...not sure what will happen then.


BW - 42 (Me)
WH - 39 (2 ONS, 6m EA)
Married 13 years, 3 children
DD: 7/13/13
Status: Rugsweeping, I guess.

Posts: 248 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: Somewhere Out There
2oldforthis
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Member # 19825
Default  Posted: 5:41 PM, September 26th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Oh, how I hate the I don't remember. WS said that all the time. I am one of those that the A did go back a long time ago however, I was asking him what his thoughts of her were. How did he feel about her, was he in love, did he think about leaving. He would not answer those questions about his feelings. However he could tell me several things that she had said to him. I said he had quite the memory for her words. Of which were all lies out of a sociopath.

When Dr. Phil hears someone say, they don't remember. He says,

"Well if you did what would it be?"

[This message edited by 2oldforthis at 5:43 PM, September 26th (Thursday)]


He did not see what he had in me, what I saw in him I did not have!

Love kills slowly.


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