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BS Questions for WS's - Part 12

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firenze posted 11/5/2018 11:54 AM

WSes who intentionally informed (or whose BS intentionally informed) your children about your infidelity, how did you handle it? I know I'm going to tell my DD about her mother's affair someday, but I'm not really sure what the "best" way would be.

cheatstroke posted 11/5/2018 13:55 PM

Thank you Hikingout and Rogue0719. You are both invaluable resources on here and are very kind to try to help both BS and WS.

I guess where I'm coming from is that, when my daughter was asked if she was sexually active with her boyfriend, rather than "yes" or "no", her answer was something to the effect of "It's the 21st century, we don't have the same views about sex as you did in the 20th century."

I interpreted that to mean that they as a generation don't view sex as that big of a deal and, if their SO were to have sex with someone else, it would really be uncool to make a big deal out of it, even if it was a big deal to them, because "our generation" is just so much more woke to what sex really is, etc. etc.

What do WS's children who DO know about their parent's infidelity have to say about infidelity and how they would handle it? And what, if anything, do WS's children who DON'T know about their parent's infidelity have to say about infidelity and how they would handle it?

hikingout posted 11/5/2018 14:32 PM

That would be a concerning statement to hear from your daughter. My older ones would not answer that way, they actually think sex is a much bigger deal than what I viewed our generation as seeing it as. Both are sexually active but one has only had one partner, the other two. And, this is mid-twenties.

My youngest daughter is not the same vibe as the older two, she is 19. But, she thinks it's gross to randomly hook up with someone. She just isn't as into getting into long term relationships as the other two were prone to, but I don't think that's a generational statement, it's more her quality of feeling whole on her own I think.

I do think that this generation has so much access to snapchat, porn, etc, and the sexualization of women is at an all time high, so I don't think it's anyone's imagination that this generation has a different view of sex. At the Highschool age, their view often reflects the view of who they are close friends with, and those friends have as much to do with their values as their parents do...just like every other generation before them.


My kids do not know - my husband simply does not want them to. They have, as I have said, seen a very stable relationship. My daughters commentary on it have to do with friends they know who have been cheated on, or things we have seen on shows together, etc. They all echo the "why not break up, why would you do that to someone" type of thing. And, their father and I have reinforced that and held discussions on it. It might have more impact if they knew, but I don't think it will save them from it.

That's why I think it's just so important to just try and make sure they are as whole as possible. That they know they don't have to have sex to make someone like them, that they feel beautiful 7 comfortable in their own skin, and can get validation from themselves and their accomplishments as a whole. That they are taught values and morals. That is all we can do for them. Staying close to them in their life and their inner world (which it's harder to do in their teen years, but as they get into their 20's it's been my experience they come back and realize you have smart things to say and they are more candid where they "won't get in trouble"). This provides you opportunities to continue to provide insight and coaching.


When my daughter was going down a road with a selfish boy, I talked with her about it. I talked to her about the different ways that might manifest later, and I would ask her whether she felt he was treating her in relation to what she felt she was worth. I know that this seems irrelevant, but the goal of every parent is to make sure that our kids grow up with skills, a sense of self and self worth, and with good sensibilities towards life and other people. Steering them specifically about infidelity is all well and good, but that can't be the focus. The focus should be on some of the root causes of infidelity and making sure you have helped them fill those gaps - but they would be gaps that you would be looking to fill anyway.


You just have to be careful not to fuel the fears as well. I would be afraid of making them so afraid of it that they don't find the vulnerability button in their marriage. And, that is a recipe for disaster.

[This message edited by hikingout at 2:34 PM, November 5th (Monday)]

Sayuwontletgo posted 11/5/2018 16:28 PM

Thank you cheatstroke My daughter is 10 so she still thinks boys have cooties. Iím blissfully happy with her innocence for now. Her generation is a whole new ballgame though, if I have to hear about another YouTube ďchallengeĒ I might lose it. She also told me the other day that ď Iím so GucciĒ. Which apparently means good? Lol. I hope someone who has told their kids comes by to answer your follow up question.

Simplicity posted 11/7/2018 10:47 AM

To the divorced WS, what do you tell people when asked why you are divorced?

Barregirl posted 11/7/2018 11:15 AM

Slight t/j. IIRC, Rogue, "I'm so Gucci" was used in The Kissing Booth on Netflix.

PaperInstead posted 11/10/2018 17:56 PM

Waywards,

What is the most important thing you have done to help your BS after Dday ? Please be specific rather than saying something general such as "being honest".


As a BS I have had a really hard time letting my guard down since Dday. I have only done it a few times when my WW was being extremely compassionate. I dont understand why she doesnt do that more often. Is it hard for WSs to be compassionate despite hurting their own spouses so deeply ? If she would be compassionate I would heal much faster. Our marriage would be much stronger.

[This message edited by PaperInstead at 5:59 PM, November 10th (Saturday)]

Mrs Panda posted 11/10/2018 19:21 PM

Hi PaperInstead,

I did all the wrong things after DD. I trickle truthed, I felt sorry for myself, I mourned the A. When I finally came to my senses, I tried to hear what my Bs needed. Because he was too angry most of the the time to tell me, I had to figure that out. I read the 5 Love Languages which I thought helped a lot and worked for us, even though Bs dislikes any prescribed self-help books. I tried to spend time and be consistent with my desire to reconcile. I tried to change me and demonstrate changes I. Me most of all.

You ask about conpasssion. I can only conjecture, but I remember I was extremely angry. Angry at myself. Angry at the OM. Angry at my BS. There was no room for compassion in my heart until I worked though those emotions. I was shut down.

I hope that helps. My BH and I are R now.

PaperInstead posted 11/10/2018 19:54 PM

Panda,

How could you feel sorry for yourself, mourn your A and hold anger toward your BS while he was in the worst pain of his life ? I dont understand how this is possible.

I think my wife intermittently understands and cares about the depth of my pain. When she does understand and care she becomes compassionate.

[This message edited by PaperInstead at 8:00 PM, November 10th (Saturday)]

Barregirl posted 11/10/2018 20:23 PM

PaperInstead, I asked my BH for his thoughts on your question. He said that being consistent in my actions has been the most important thing I have done for his healing. When pressed for clarification, he said that being open and transparent all of the time, making him feel like my priority, talking to him more and making more of an effort to spend time with him, and most importantly not "phone guarding". He says that I became almost a different person during my A and that now I am myself again.

I don't find it hard to be compassionate toward my BH at all. I see his pain and I hurt with him. Whenever he wants to talk, I am there. I will answer any and all questions he has without hesitation. I check in with him several times a week to see how he is feeling. And I do things to make him smile any chance I get.

PaperInstead posted 11/10/2018 20:31 PM

Barregirl

Thank you for your excellent answer. It gave me hope and the warm fuzzies. I wish my wife would act the same way. At most she is compassionate once in a while when she sees how much I am hurting. During that time she is more affectionate and loving. These times are rare and fleeting.

How far away are you from Dday ?

What kind of affair did you have ?

Maybe my wife just needs more time.

[This message edited by PaperInstead at 8:32 PM, November 10th (Saturday)]

Barregirl posted 11/10/2018 21:18 PM

Paper, I had a PA with a man I met online in Feb 2018. Dday was 4/17/18, so I am just about 7 months out. It took me about a month to stop minimizing and trying to justify what I did. My IC really helped me identify my whys and be able to start tackling them. My H sat back and watched for a while, but when he noticed that I was once again being more like the person I had been before, he started working to heal as well. Now we are both working on rebuilding our M from the ashes.
I hope that your WW will come to see that the reaction she gets from her willingness to work is what she is striving for and will do what it takes to help you heal.

[This message edited by Barregirl at 9:24 PM, November 10th (Saturday)]

Nevertome posted 11/10/2018 23:19 PM

cheatstroke ad rogue;

when my kids were young, i caught him sexting; didn't tell the kids; he told me they had kissed and were about to have sex, but i caught him in time. didn't tell the kids.

8 years later; year and a half ago; caught him again; different whore; first time was oral and sex; he is a SA; made him tell the kids (12 and 14) that night that he had cheated; husband was crying; they thought it was a joke; when they realized it was true, they were in disbelief.

still don't know if it was the right thing. But, I can tell you for sure that i could not have gone through the last year and a half with them wondering what was wrong with mom. or why is mom not being so nice to dad. or why is dad so sad and different.

so, might not have been what was right, but it was the only option. and unfortunately another price paid for the selfishness of his acts

Mrs Panda posted 11/11/2018 06:50 AM

PaperInstead. Good question. I canít beleive it myself that is was so cold. I was shut down. My love for my BH was buried under a fog of selfishness, excitement and drama surrounding the AP, and anger.

My BH had moved out and I was still thinking of the AP. Even though he had basically rejected me. I was not myself. I was delirious with something different. I was using the AP to try to be a different me. Instead I became the worst of myself.

It was only after months of NC that I was able to see my BH again as he was. A good guy that I loved. Yes he had flaws but not nearly what I had built up in my head.

My BH came on Thanksgiving to drop off some food for me since I was alone. All sorts of different things from Hpney Baked Ham store. He drove 3 hours to do this simply out of kindness. That was the first time I felt emotion for him again. And so felt ashamed. The walls started to come down.

The shame lasted years and made it hard to me to give BH what he needed. A happy person. I joined SI a few months in and that helped me tremendously. Hope that helps you. I donít know your stitch and every one is different. But there are themes around here that are very common. My behavior was typical I have seen.

[This message edited by Mrs Panda at 6:54 AM, November 11th (Sunday)]

PaperInstead posted 11/11/2018 12:39 PM

Waywards,

Did you do anything to help your BS heal from the inevitable comparisons the BS will make to the AP ? This is an especially painful topic for many BSs concerning sex and physical appearance but it can extend far beyond sex and appearance.

If I were a cake eater wayward who wanted to keep the marriage I would address all the inevitable comparisons by preemptively identifying and compassionately discussing them. This shows real consideration and care. I deeply value when my wife thinks ahead and identifies my injuries without me having to bring them up. Unfortunately, this does not happen frequently.

I even value when she brings up the comparisons as generalities then asks me to divulge the details that hurt me. An example of this could be her saying she understands that many BS compare themselves to the AP in appearance. She could then ask if I do the same thing and if I want to talk about the details.

Any kind of initiative on my WW's part in addressing my injuries from her affair help considerably especially with the comparisons. I am sure I am not the only BS who appreciates this.

[This message edited by PaperInstead at 3:21 PM, November 11th (Sunday)]

earlydetour posted 11/11/2018 19:53 PM

Waywards, did any of you actually ask yourself

If my partner knew what I was doing, would he or she be okay with it?
at any point during your A? My fWH convinced himself my answer would be yes because he felt there was nothing at all wrong with his EA behaviors, so I should be ok with them. He also thought that because the OW wasn't complaining about how he was treating her & he was following her lead on how to treat her (& not at all how I or anyone else would perceive it) - if she was happy and ok with his behaviors towards her, I shouldn't have a problem either . Just want to hear your thoughts on this aspect. Thanks.

Sayuwontletgo posted 11/11/2018 21:10 PM

Paper, I have tried to ask him more specific questions about the comparisons. Physically AP was inferior to my H in a lot of ways. I try to highlight the negative while still staying truthful. Itís going to come off as disingenuous if I say every single thing was awful but AP was an awful person. His life made him ugly. I try to re affirm that my H is the better man in all ways. Itís a long process but I try to initiate sex more and show him that heís physically desired. Itís a struggle still at times due to shame/disgust with myself and our hectic schedules. I think these things combined consistently over time will help but Iíve learned nothingís set in stone with our recovery. He might want space tomorrow or a romantic dinner the next. I try to stay focused and flexible to be what he needs. I hope that answered your questio in some way? Feels a little like rambling but itís what seems to help us.

PaperInstead posted 11/11/2018 21:37 PM

SayYouWontLetGo, Thank you for the answer. When I was reading your answer I felt like crying because I would love for my wife to spontaneously tell me her AP was inferior to me in any possible way. I would also like to her to reaffirm that I am better than her AP in all ways. She has done neither.

I asked her several comparison questions that were obvious requests for generous answers and she did not answer with compliments. She simply was cold so I shut down in response.

Now she is becoming more compassionate at nine months post-Day but I dont think she is as far along as she needs to be. She certainly is not consistently compassionate or generous.

I think about divorce all the time.

Sayuwontletgo posted 11/11/2018 21:43 PM

Early detour, your question hits really close to home with me. Iíll try to explain the crazy thought process in coming to the conclusion that at one point I thought my BH was cheating and was looking for a way out of the M so my A was his easy way out among loads of other ridiculous justifications.

H travelled for work and was gone a lot. Working 100+ hours weekly. I thought he took assignments so far away to get away from me and our daughter. He started to come home less and less on his days off and he would go days without texting or calling. I was convinced he was seeing someone he worked with. H started to see what the job was doing to him and our family so he stepped down and was home most nights. I let the resentment build instead of talking to him about It I started to confide in my AP. We used to have AP and his GF out for drinks once a week and one drunken night AP made a pass at me. I stopped it eventually (still WAY over the friend line)and walked away. When I told my H about it he was pissed but not at AP, he was pissed at me. AP apologized to my H and said it was just because he was drunk and it wouldnít happen again. I had this stupid idea that my H was supposed to be my protector from other men (can I eye roll myself?) so when he invited AP back over for drinks I saw it as a please take her off my hands type deal. Plus I was already pissed about all the other things that had happened in our lives that had to be all H fault because God forbid I take responsibility for my own life.

There is no logic in any of this. Even trying to write it out makes me cringe.it is an immature, selfish and just plain stupid view.If I had questioned these thoughts even a little itís easy to say what the hell was I thinking. If he wanted a way out he wouldíve divorced me or atleast not put up with the angry wife he came home to and a job that was killing him slowly. He brought AP back around to show that he trusted me not to get rid of me. I didnít want to see it then. I twisted all of it to fit what I had already decided was true. I had convinced myself completely that he didnít love me anymore and would be relieved in a way when he found out about the A to have a socially acceptable reason to get divorced.

destroyedwayward posted 11/12/2018 07:18 AM

What is the most important thing you have done to help your BS after Dday ?

In any possible way, I am taking the responsibility of me off my BH plate while doing whatever I can to alleviate the burden and pain of my cheating from him. After DDay, it was crisis mode, I broke down, collapsed, defended. I didn't blame-shift, but these mechanisms were still self-preserving and further damaging to my BH. They not only shut him out, but made him feel the need to protect me; thereby, having to forego his own needs to some degree during that time. His need to let out the anger, the pain, the confusion, the panic. His needs and his recovery should be his primary focus... as well as mine. So, I am learning and trying my best to just be with him, in whatever state he is, to provide support when I can, and that can mean being receptive to his anger or offering affection, if he'll have it, or simply sitting in peaceful moments. It is an ongoing practice and requires actively rising above the guilt and shame. I am still learning everyday.

Did you do anything to help your BS heal from the inevitable comparisons the BS will make to the AP ?

Like the others have responded, I try to take any opportunity for a love language that presents itself. In general, in M, I find that couples often forget to overtly compliment or credit their spouses. We stop saying "Thank you" or "Wow, that's a good point/idea" or "Your frame looks nice in that sweater". The full extent of appreciation and admiration are actions and words. If BH has had a long day at work or feeling tired, back rubs, hand/foot massages. If BH mentions that he wants to change the diet a little, making sure to buy groceries and foods to support that diet. Depending on the type of A, doing everything above and beyond what was done for AP, whether that involves intimacy or just quality time. I am not sure if it makes a difference, but for me, all of this has had to come voluntarily without any guidance from BH. I am still early on ~5 months out and recognize that consistency is key.

[This message edited by destroyedwayward at 7:21 AM, November 12th (Monday)]

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