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Long Term Affairs Part 38

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WhyAgainWhyHer posted 8/2/2018 09:37 AM

Notmetoo2011, my first D Day was about 7 years ago. I let him convince me it was a ONS and that he didn't plan it, but my gut told me different. Now I;m here and I know that first time was all planned by him, and she stayed with him for a few days.

Now I know she's always been in our relationship, and it makes the pain worse this time around. If we do stay together, I don;t see that ever going away.

I totally get why you stay. If I get a choice in this, I would stay.

Emotionalhell posted 8/2/2018 13:08 PM

At newlyassertive.. thank you for your reply. I had never heard of this. In my case WH would of been later in life when the A started but it did start when he was going through his divorce to first wife.. so it could be an Addiction
Scary to think this. Could have a strong attachment to MOW bc of this

[This message edited by Emotionalhell at 4:54 PM, August 2nd (Thursday)]

FightingBack posted 8/2/2018 13:25 PM

Notmetoo2011,

2011 was a rotten year wasnít it?

You said...


We donít talk about it. Thereís nothing left to say. I canít change what happened. I still think my life is better with him than without him but the past and the hurt is always with me. It makes me sad to realize it is never going to go away.

Iím not ready to accept that yet. I know it will never go away completely, but I want to feel that we can actually move PAST it. I worry that at almost 7 years out, itís not looking too hopeful, but I am still striving to find a way. Talking about it seems like the only way to process it all and then move along with what we have learned.

I still need to talk about it. I am still frustrated that there are memories and secrets between them that I have hoped he needed or wanted to share, even it is painful, in order to heal us.

I want to know everything, not just what they did, but how he felt, how he feels now, looking back. I need to hear that he has put some effort into analyzing his actions and choices. It would be wonderful for him to bring it up, just because we are partners and sharing these struggles are what good partners do.

But he wonít go there, because avoiding uncomfortable thoughts are what allowed the A to begin in the first place.

I have made my needs clear. Each week we go out alone to dinner and I hope we will talk. Each week I am disappointed.

Lots of ďIĒ here. So sorry.

WhyAgainWhyHer posted 8/2/2018 13:35 PM

Fighting back, everything you said just rings so true! I still, 7 years later wish I had demanded the full truth, all the painful details. I think it would have helped me heal, and maybe then not be so deep in it this time around. But like yours, he wouldn't talk. Said it was to spare my feelings. BS, it was to hide, minimize, everything everyone talks about here. I feel that if he were to tell me all the details, memories, experiences, that maybe they would be less important to him

FightingBack posted 8/2/2018 19:44 PM

WhyAgain,
Yes, less important to them, and hopefully, less important to us. I think we tend to romanticize what went on during affairs. If the details were laid out on the table, in the light of day out of shadowy secrecy, they may not look so pretty. And they may not haunt us as our imaginations do.

LifeisCrazy posted 8/3/2018 10:59 AM

I want to know everything, not just what they did, but how he felt, how he feels now, looking back. I need to hear that he has put some effort into analyzing his actions and choices. It would be wonderful for him to bring it up, just because we are partners and sharing these struggles are what good partners do.

I want to make a couple of points.

The first is that when I asked my wife why she never "brings it up" she relayed something about the affair that I know... but always seem to forget. The affair is a place she does not want to go. She looked at me and repeated what she's said a hundred times since the affair. That she's ashamed. That there is absolutely nothing about that period of time that she recalls with fondness. All that memory does for her is remind her of how shitty a person she was and what she did to our family. On top of that, of course, is that she never really knows how I'll react to bringing up the affair. We are, overall, a million times better than we were. Why would she, in the middle of date night, potentially ruin the evening by saying, "You know, I want to talk to you about..." No matter how many times I tell her that I'd like for her to do this, it's not going to happen. And I get that.

My point here is that the WS doesn't look at the affair the way we do. It's simply different. I mean, take a look at that thread about sex in reconciliation and you'll see a dividing line between how men and women view that topic. Well, it's different here, too. No matter how much I ask my wife to "bring it up" it's not going to happen. That doesn't mean that we can't discuss it - it means that if we're going to have an affair talk it's going to come from me.

One of the keys to reconciliation is that it takes a tremendous amount of understanding by both partners. That includes an appreciation for how they feel as well as their strengths and weaknesses. We cannot fall back into the same passive-aggressive patterns that helped to lead into our current predicament by simply doing this...

I have made my needs clear. Each week we go out alone to dinner and I hope we will talk. Each week I am disappointed.

Stop it. You know that it's passive-aggressive and yet you keep doing the same thing.

Instead, take action! I say this all the time - you have been granted a wonderful thing... something that most couples don't have. You've been granted a do-over. Let me explain.

For most married couples that don't experience infidelity, the relationships are pretty much set. It's very rare that a husband is going to suddenly, out of the blue, say, "You know, honey... I'd like for our sex life to be...." The topic is avoided because the marriage is stable and altering the relationship dynamic is so uncomfortable.

Here, you've been given a reset button. You have been given a gift to say, "Wait a second. You had an affair. I need for _______ to be done in order for me to move forward. Let's figure out how we're going to get this done." In essence, you are able to reset the relationship dynamic because of the affair - something that can help you (and your husband) and lead to a better marriage.

How? Well, it's not through passive-aggression. You sit him down, or write him a note, and let him know - right to his face and in a way that lets him know that you're not fucking around - what you need. Exactly.

If you need him to talk about the affair then tell him. Let him know that every week for the next 4 weeks, on Friday evenings, you guys are going to go out for dinner and he is going to talk about the affair. He will be the first to speak and you need him to cover x, y and z. Let him know that if it doesn't happen, starting next Friday, then you're going to look into divorce.

It is up to YOU to get what you need out of the marriage. Stop blaming your spouse - especially if he doesn't know what you need! Get it! Life is short and you've been given an opportunity to change your dynamics so that your marriage is awesome.

You know what might happen? He might say to himself, "Shit, she's making me talk about all this stuff... I'm going to say what I feel!" "You know what? I want _____!!" Good! THAT is what you WANT! You want to be communicating - not staying in this shitty limbo of passive-aggression.

7 years?!? Get to it!

[This message edited by LifeisCrazy at 11:00 AM, August 3rd (Friday)]

hopeandhealing posted 8/3/2018 11:14 AM

^^^^This

My WH said the same thing as LifeIsCrazy's wife when I asked him to initiate the conversation. He said, "I am ashamed of my behaviour, I don't think fondly of any of my time in the A and who I was able to be, why would I want to bring it up, particularly when for a moment in time, you might actually be having a good moment, free of the shit show I have bestowed upon you".

I get that, I truly do; however, despite it, I needed him to initiate conversations, so that was one of my "asks"/requirements of R. He has done it. It's a bit awkward, but he's doing it. You know what? Sometimes, I wasn't thinking about it when he asked and my answer was, "I am fine and there is nothing I need to discuss with you right now, thanks for bringing it up" and on we went.

The only way forward is to to put to past to rest It will always be a shitty chapter in your life story, as it will for all BS, but it does not have to define how you live your life, how you see the world, how you move forward. Life must go on. The shitty theme of the chapter doesn't need to be an undercurrent in every subsequent chapter of your book. It is there, yes, but it can be a supporting character, something which helps to keep you focusing on how to build a new and better M, how to be more authentic and ask for what you need. The next chapters of your life are yours to write without complacency, with a changed perspective. Those are your choices to make.

Just my two cents.

FightingBack posted 8/3/2018 16:12 PM

Life is Crazy,

Stop it. You know that it's passive-aggressive and yet you keep doing the same thing.

It does appear passive-aggressive. I am going to consider that.

In my defence though, often we go out in order to be alone as ours is a very busy household. Sometimes I have a nagging question on my mind, sometimes there is an article which I have sent my H and asked for his opinion/thoughts. Sometimes, I just need to tell him how I feel but most often, we have this ďdateĒ to get away from the hassle-bustle.

But whenever there is something ďon the agendaĒ ( which is maybe once every 2-3 months), I am clear that I want him to bring it up when we go out on our own.

I do try to be patient and let him relax, but once weíve had our coffee and heís asking for the bill, my patience has worn out.

But I must think carefully about my own behaviour on such an evening. My expectant waiting for him to bring up a subject even remotely related to the affair, and knowing that it is difficult for him, may very well indeed be passive-aggressive. I never looked at it that way.

Thank you for your thoughts.

I liked your thoughts also in regards to getting a do-over, as well as HopeandHealingís.

FightingBack posted 8/3/2018 16:14 PM

Now, I really do not know how that emoji appeared at the end of my post LOL. (Or maybe I really did)

amanda123 posted 8/4/2018 17:32 PM

I believe in asking for what you want Guessing is not going to give you the answer, therefore you need to ask. Of course depending on what and who the question is asked of, that doesnt always mean you are going to get it. It also means you have to be prepared for the answer.

I have asked my H for answers about the A many times over, mostly verbally and on occasion on paper, because he seems to become mute when it comes to this subject. Such things as transparency, the whys, the how could you and hell yes I want to know all the details!! Slowly little by little I have managed to extract (like getting blood out of a stone) some of the things I needed to know. I have been more than patient in this regard however relentless for my need to know. If im going to stay with him after he has had a LTA then he needs to cough up the things I want to know. Passive aggressive - call it what you want.

My gentle, calm, naive, demeanor, let him walk all over me and think that it was perfectly fine for him to have a LTA. Unfortunately I am not the same person I was prior to the A, I have become more assertive and more aware of everything around me, I am not that person who trusted people without question. There were signs that I should have taken notice of and certainly times I should have asked "what the hell was going on"?. But everything in hindsight right?

Now older, wiser and more experienced.

gmc94 posted 8/4/2018 21:20 PM

I appreciate the "reset button" analogy - that's good stuff to think about.

Maybe I missed the part where the BS asked the WS to bring it up, but I don't see asking a WS to bring up the A, then the WS not doing it as passive aggressive. Its been said here hundreds of times, but the WS MUST work on themselves - and part of that is meeting reasonable BS needs.... I understand that a WS doesn't like bringing it up, feels shame, doesn't want to spoil the moment, etc. But it's their JOB in recovery/reconciliation to work on that - to address the BS' needs.

IMHO, if a BS clearly expresses it as something s/he needs, the BS having to constantly remind a WS to meet that need seems to be problematic....
Seems to me that the WS's ACTIONS say something here. and if the BS must reiterate needs that have already been clearly expressed and understood, seems it can lead to nagging, parenting, codependence, etc.

Just my two cents

MalibuBayBreeze posted 8/5/2018 10:05 AM

My gentle, calm, naive, demeanor, let him walk all over me and think that it was perfectly fine for him to have a LTA. Unfortunately I am not the same person I was prior to the A, I have become more assertive and more aware of everything around me, I am not that person who trusted people without question. There were signs that I should have taken notice of and certainly times I should have asked "what the hell was going on"?. But everything in hindsight right?

Exactly Amanda. I wish I could go back to DDay because I too have changed. I would demand answers right then and there to everything I asked, and if not I would have shown him the door. I think he would have started talking because I had him cornered for the first time in our relationship. Red flags that weren't questioned because I was carefully walking on those eggshells instead of asserting myself and calling him out on them. Huge mistake which enabled the A to go on for years.

Woulda coulda shoulda. But we can't turn back time, all we can do is go forward and never allow ourselves to be put in a corner ever again. I constantly observe, and if there ever is anything going on again I will know and I will listen to my gut instead of trying to silence it. A hard lesson to learn, but it has been learned nonetheless.

hopefull77 posted 8/5/2018 10:49 AM

At a work retreat a few years ago the speaker used this comment that stayed with me. An expectation is premeditated RESENTMENT. And boy does that work both ways!

On a side note I too appreciate the "reset button" analogy
Happy Sunday everyone

I wish us all peace of mind

CaliforniaNative posted 8/5/2018 15:35 PM

So over the weekend I had a discussion on three other long term affairs. Two of them the spouse knows about the affair, Their WH claimed to have broken it off, but in reality it went deeper underground.

LTA 1 - The OW flew to his home state and is visiting him for 2weeks as we speak. BS knew about the LTA but they both committed to stop and she has no idea itís still going on.

LTA 2 - The second LTA, WS now just has sex with ow while he is at work. BS was contacted by OW and she told her about the LTA. WS promised to stop. Not so much.

LTA 3 - The third has been going on for 5 years and the wife has no idea. WS has three young children and has sex in his car while the kids are home and the mother is at work.

I guess my point is... itís time to write a new story. If youíre in R do periodic checkups. The WH that is cheating at work his BS has no idea because the tracker is showing him AT WORK. So sad.

WhyAgainWhyHer posted 8/6/2018 09:42 AM

CalNative, you are so on point. Relationship checks, just like you tune up your car before it falls apart. All though I don;t think in my case it would have made a difference, at least maybe this would have all come out earlier, and I wouldn't have wasted 10 years on him.

LifeisCrazy posted 8/6/2018 10:44 AM

Maybe I missed the part where the BS asked the WS to bring it up, but I don't see asking a WS to bring up the A, then the WS not doing it as passive aggressive.

Good morning. I want to make sure that I'm perfectly clear here.

It is perfectly acceptable to ask your WS to bring up the affair. Indeed, I can't imagine any of us NOT doing this.

What IS passive-aggressive, however, is having an undercurrent of expectation that is consistently not met... and then getting angry over your husband's inability to meet that expectation.

I'm not sure how to explain this without seeming like I'm lecturing - I'm not. I'm only trying to express how I found my way past so much of the bullshit... the very same bullshit so many of you find yourselves in.

The WS and the BS see the affair differently - sometimes only at first, sometimes forever. They don't know what the pain of infidelity feels like because they've never been betrayed. Even those who do the work and seem to understand - let's face it... they don't REALLY understand. Yes, they see the amount of pain you're in and they recognize that it's because of THEM... but they really don't know.

For many, several years down the road (or maybe sooner) from a LTA the tables are suddenly turned and they are forced to confront the fact that they are, really, pretty nasty people. They actively hurt someone they love... on an ongoing basis. At the end of the day, that makes them pretty fucked up individuals. Now, there are two ways they can handle that fact - they can pretend they're better but just continue on with the affair (or start a new one)... ala California Native's post above... OR they can realize that they need help, address their issues, and start working to heal the marriage.

Partner #1 gets divorced. Period. He/she is not marriage material.

Partner #2 might be rewarded with reconciliation.

If you're married to Partner #2, however, and this is mission critical - just because they're "doing the work" doesn't mean it's easy for them. Face it, no matter how much work they're doing there is something within them that doesn't see the marriage the way we do. THAT is why they had a LTA! So we need to realize that making the marriage better than it ever was is going to require both of you. Working together. Understanding that, really, both of you have issues and each needs to lean on each other.

So... yes, you tell him what you need (to bring up the affair). But you MUST realize that... he's fucked up! He, more than likely, isn't going to just do this out of the blue. YOU need to step up YOUR game. As I say so often, you need to turn TOWARDS each other. And that means clearly and unmistakably spelling out exactly what you need. That does NOT mean telling him you want him to bring up the affair - and 6 months later wondering why he hasn't. It means setting down your expectation within a near-term goal. "Honey, it's Monday. I want YOU to bring up the affair on our date night THIS FRIDAY... and I want this, this and this to be addressed." THAT clear.

If necessary, and I did this A LOT... write down a specific list of questions, no matter how difficult they might be. Hand them to him and say, "I want you to write me these answers. I want them by Friday. I know they're going to be tough but, please, do NOT spare me any pain. I need to know the answers. Look him directly in the eyes and say, "Do you understand??" Then ask him on Friday, "Do you have my answers?" Don't just wait around only to find, 6 months later, he hasn't given you the answers.

We all have this opportunity to reset the marriage. Please, god help all of us if we settle back into the same, shitty communication and relationship dynamics that existed pre-affair. I, for one, will NOT go there. For me, it's pretty simple - if I need my wife to jump through hoops of fire in the bedroom - then I'm going to tell her exactly that. She doesn't HAVE to... she's not obligated. And she certainly doesn't have to do it tonight. She's not my personal whore. But I AM going to tell her what I want and how I feel. And guess what else? She is more than welcome (and she has) to tell me what SHE needs.

That is what we were missing for 20+ years. We were so damn worried about making each other upset, or too embarrassed to tell each other our needs, or to find a way for each other to understand... that we just sat on it. And simmered. And grew apart. Until she fell into someone else's orbit who would tell her exactly what she needed to hear.

I'm not going there anymore. And neither should any of you.

Understanding that the other person doesn't always understand... is part of communication.

Good luck!

steadychevy posted 8/6/2018 11:04 AM

Great post, LifeisCrazy. It's a summary of what I did wrong. Saying here's what I need and her saying I will do that or I will have that done by... Then nothing. Wash, rinse, repeat. Verbal and written. It's passive aggressive to promise to do something and not doing it or agree to something and actions don't match. It's an awful trap.

I'm not going there anymore. And neither should any of you.

For me, though, we've separated and I've filed after 4 years of doing the above.

hopeandhealing posted 8/6/2018 16:44 PM

LifeisCrazy,

Great post. I completely agree. Following this methodology if you can call it that, has allowed us to push the reset button despite the horrible and hurtful choices he previously made.

Our communication is 1000 times better and I will no longer put up with any shit. I have expectations which I have clearly outlined and he has the choice to step up and meet them or not and lose me and the M, his call. I am not asking for the moon and neither is he, but we were just unable to unequivocally speak our own truths pre dday.

Neither of us want the shitty M we had before. I have a 25 year history with this man, he is the father of my children and the reality is, despite the pain he has caused me, I still love him. If we can make a better M than before (and so far, we are), then I am going to try and he can work his ever loving ass off to make it right to me.

amanda123 posted 8/12/2018 21:20 PM

Woulda coulda shoulda. But we can't turn back time, all we can do is go forward and never allow ourselves to be put in a corner ever again. I constantly observe, and if there ever is anything going on again I will know and I will listen to my gut instead of trying to silence it. A hard lesson to learn, but it has been learned nonetheless.

Everything in hindsight. If we only knew then what we know now.

The issue for me is can I ever really get over it. Its still there in the back of my head, and for the most part I choose not to think about it so much anymore. I want to be free of feeling so disappointed in him and what he did to me and our marriage and our family. I feel that he really is a different person now. Its almost like a bad dream, seems so long ago now.

Svon posted 8/14/2018 01:38 AM

Long term affairs are truly the worst. The pain is unbearable.. my husband may read this and know itís me. I hope he does. I welcome any opportunity for him to see my pain. That being said, he is being remorseful. He answers all
My questions. He dropped his Whore immediately and has not missed her one bit. I believe he loved me all along. Enough mental health professionals have convinced me that this is definitely possible. He had ample opportunity to leave me for her as she wanted him to, yet never did. My two cents Is that if you truly want to reconcile try focusing on your spouses good qualities rather than hiis horrible sins. Why do you still want your marraige? Is he more than his bad deeds? Is his cheating rhe worst thing he can do to you? Did your marraige work in other ways? Is it worth fighting for? Does the fact that he dropped his AP easily and immediately mean anything? Or maybe he didnít? These are all questions you should be asking yourself. I know my husband is more than his sins. IF I could create a partner suitable for me, it would be very similar to him minus his cheating . He is getting professional help on that collossal character flaw. I would hate for him to conquer it and another woman reap not only the benefits of H 2.0, but to enjoy half of a retirement that should be mine. Marraige is about more than romantic love. It is a parternsjip and business relationship too. Do you want to throw it all away because your spouse has issues without at least fighting for what is rightfully yours? I wonít pretend it doesnít hurt like hell, but imagine the alternative. A life with a broken family. Less financial security. Perhaps growing old alone. Make sure you consider all the outcomes before you decide reconciliation is not possible, And fight to believe that your memories and life were real. There is a reason why he never left you. It Sucks for sure, but you get to decide how you can be happy from here on out and whatever you decide today does not have to be a prison sentence. If you change your mind next week, next month, next year, or in ten years the choice is yours. Work on being happy. If thatís with WH, so be it. If itís alone, thatís fine too. If itís somewhere in the middle where you are married but not as committed as you once were, good for you! Make your own happiness. Define it. If you stay married, you get to define your marraige and what that means to you. I know women who stay married for the security but are single and available in their hearts. Good for them. Donít let society define your life, your happiness, or even your marriage. Your spouse has already redefined your marriage from a typical one. You can make your rules too.

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