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Feeling Stuck in Anger/Plain of Lethal Flatness Phase

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Alpargata posted 12/17/2019 09:16 AM

Tbh even if she agrees to this poly it looks like she will TT until your deathbed, 20 polys later.

You can rest easy knowing you tried everything that was in your power to save your M.

^^^^ Make this part of your daily mantra.

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 09:23 AM

I think that it goes along with noone really knows how to do this after it happens.

That is certainly true. I was flying completely blind when I got blindsided with the VAR recording on Dec. 12, 2016. I think I had been on SI once maybe in the weeks before that, but it's all a blur. I got the information about how to do a VAR through another website. I certainly did not know some basic things that would have been helpful like to shut down any discussion of MC, ask for a written timeline and get a polygraph right away. I wish I had. But shoulda coulda woulda. Life's too short for a lot of self-recrimination. There are a lot of very good reasons I have stayed, and as I said I have no self-doubt about providing my kids with a stable home.

I slept just fine last night in own bed. She was up all night starting out with a late night sobbing jag, and then sniffling through the night. Obviously I feel bad for her whenever this happens. Canít help it.

I did comfort her in a soft 180 way by touching her shoulder and saying ďit will all work out. If you decide to do the poly we can cross the bridge after getting the results. If you donít do the poly we can move forward with an amicable divorce and co-parent. Either way it will work out they way it is supposed to.Ē

This morning she's back to agreeing to the polygraph. I'm sick of the rollercoaster and told her that. I told her I'm done debating it and I will not tolerate her changing her mind again. I asked her to provide me with three dates in the next two weeks so I can work with the examiner's calendar and my schedule.

[This message edited by Thumos at 2:14 PM, December 17th (Tuesday)]

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 09:35 AM

Tbh even if she agrees to this poly it looks like she will TT until your deathbed, 20 polys later.

If she does the poly she either passes it or doesnít. Pretty straightforward. If she passes, I will still need to decide whether to reconcile in light of everything but I am confident I will be able to rest a lot of my questions knowing she has been truthful.

I am confident about this because of the way I reacted both internally and externally yesterday to the brinksmanship and gamesmanship of her telling me she was ďunsureĒ about doing the polygraph. I felt and feel quite calm and assured.

The prospect of divorce was yesterday and is today something I am comfortable living out. The fear seems to be largely gone. That doesnít mean Iím without anxiety, it just means I seem to have a level head. Yes, I was and I am angry but not in a white hot way. More in righteous slow boil way.

[This message edited by Thumos at 9:36 AM, December 17th (Tuesday)]

EllieKMAS posted 12/17/2019 09:40 AM

You've reached the cold anger stage.

I have always looked at it like that for me - hot anger is that reactive anger and is very irrational. Cold anger is the rational clarifying one.

hikingout posted 12/17/2019 09:56 AM

Life's too short for a lot of self-recrimination. There are a lot of very good reasons I have stayed, and as I said I have no self-doubt about providing my kids with a stable home.

Amen. You are not the one who has done anything wrong, and you shouldn't feel like that for one minute.

The prospect of divorce was yesterday and is today something I am comfortable living out. The fear seems to be largely gone. That doesnít mean Iím without anxiety, it just means I seem to have a level head.

For what it's worth, I think that my husband came to that realization as well. That he would be fine either way, and he would find his path to happiness. It's freeing not to be held down in fear, him asking me for a divorce and us starting those steps were really positive things for both of us in many ways, it changed the course of everything. I think he still takes solace today that he could still do it at any time, and feels equally empowered by his choice to stay.

I slept just fine last night in own bed. She was up all night starting out with a late night sobbing jag, and then sniffling through the night.
I did comfort her in a soft 180 way by touching her shoulder and saying ďit will all work out. If you decide to do the poly we can cross the bridge after getting the results. If you donít do the poly we can move forward with an amicable divorce and co-parent. Either way it will work out they way it is supposed to.Ē

This continues to sound like a woman with a guilty conscience. That she has been taking things as they come, thought the disclosure would be enough. Her sobbing jag sounds more like manipulation, which is much like you felt her anxiety attack was.

I am sorry if I am driving you crazy with all the posts, but I am just so sorry this is happening this way.

BeyondRage posted 12/17/2019 10:31 AM

Take a run at a pre test confession now. If she knows she will fail you may get it

nekonamida posted 12/17/2019 10:41 AM

This is a tough situation to be in. If she passes without further confessions, you will still always be asking yourself why it had to come to this, why she took so long, and why she tortured you like this seeing how much it hurt you. I hope she follows through with giving you dates. Don't let her wait too long or make excuses. Hold her feet to the fire.

Well letís be honest: Iíve certainly given her every inclination for her to believe she could string this along ó with my own complicity in rugsweeping and in never forcing the issue of the poly for so long.

There's two ways to look at this. One is enabling her and the other is that you extended her a grace that she did not deserve. You proved your love for her and wish to R by giving her this grace. It's not your fault that she saw this as an opening for manipulation. It's a testament to how far she needs to go in R if any grace and mercy from you is an opportunity for her to manipulate you.

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 11:01 AM

Her sobbing jag sounds more like manipulation, which is much like you felt her anxiety attack was.

I think it's more complicated than that. I think both were genuine, but used as tools to manipulate to some extent. Don't know if that makes sense. I don't believe she was faking her panic attack. I do think the circumstances were "off" and made my spidey sense go on alert. She had the attack at her therapist's office, but had the presence of mind to have them call my MIL to pick her up and dispatch my SIL to pick up her car for her -- sort of a rally the troops behind her moment. This was immediately after I'd texted her that I was calling a polygraph examiner.

Yet I was left in the dark until getting a text from my MIL that she was at an ER. They were at an ER a good 30 minutes away from the therapist's office. When I called my MIL she immediately jumped on my case about what a terrible marriage we had. I was like "no shit Sherlock" but of course didn't say that. A few days later, I sat down with MIL and set the record straight about what I was asking for and why.

My WW said that not calling me about the panic attack was:

1. Because she thought I would get mad
2. Because she didn't want to worry me
3. Because she knows I'm busy with work and very behind.

Those feel like excuses rather than what may have actually been going on, especially with the odd detail about going to an ER 30 minutes away (she says this was bc they discussed she might have to stay overnight and she wanted to be closer to home).

But you add all at up and you get legit panic attack + manipulative gambit to make me drop the polygraph.

The sobbing jag last night was someone I believe legitimately grieving what she's lost and what she did -- but also using it to manipulate.

[This message edited by Thumos at 12:21 PM, December 17th (Tuesday)]

turnthepage posted 12/17/2019 11:08 AM

I understand that even manipulation can have truthful aspects. She truthfully doesnít want the poly, I also believe she truly still wants the marriage. But she is piggybacking in these tactics that just seem to not be fully authentic. Hiking did this too.

[This message edited by turnthepage at 11:09 AM, December 17th (Tuesday)]

Butforthegrace posted 12/17/2019 11:13 AM

If she passes without further confessions, you will still always be asking yourself why it had to come to this, why she took so long, and why she tortured you like this seeing how much it hurt you

This has been my point all along. My gut is that she passes the poly, there is no parking lot confession, but there is also a persistent unwillingness to discuss the A, reinforced now by the poly. As sense from her that it's done. Put a fork in it. End of discussion, period. Zero healing. "Why were so utterly shitty to me? What would lead you to do that to me?" STFU, Thumos. We will never discuss it again.

In 10 years, will you be okay with that?

[This message edited by Butforthegrace at 11:14 AM, December 17th (Tuesday)]

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 12:14 PM

My gut is that she passes the poly, there is no parking lot confession, but there is also a persistent unwillingness to discuss the A, reinforced now by the poly. As sense from her that it's done. Put a fork in it. End of discussion, period. Zero healing. "Why were so utterly shitty to me? What would lead you to do that to me?" STFU, Thumos. We will never discuss it again.

BFTG, I do think this is overstating things so let me put some context around the therapy we are in.

My wife and I are each seeing an IC - both IC's work together in a partner practice that is focused on betrayal trauma. We have been seeing them all fall, after I laid down my non-negotiables for my WW in August. She was the one who located them. She took the lead on it. I did additional research and was impressed she'd found them. (I should also mention my WW signed us up for a Retrouvaille weekend in February so I don't think she was planning on not talking about this anymore).

Their entire approach is everything I could have hoped for from therapists, and they are not interested in rugsweeping or blameshifting. They are focused on healing, restitution, transparency, truth and, if possible, reconciliation. But that's an IF. I can't tell you how many times my IC has said something along the lines of "if you both reconcile," "if this isn't a deal breaker for you" "if she is transparent" "if your wife begins to grapple with this." Now my IC is not seeing her, but he talks to my WW's therapist. My IC has been supportive of me seeking a poly examiner. He gave me the name of a reputable one, and that's who I've been working to schedule with.

The hope for this process is that we would work individually and then eventually come into a couples counseling atmosphere when the timing is right and appropriate.

It has been my hope that, barring a failed polygraph or a devastating parking lot confession, we could keep on keeping on with this work.

My wife has been diligent about seeing her therapist. She has begun to grapple with her whys. I'm willing to be patient with that work. What I'm not going to be patient about is backsliding on commitments made or bargaining with me on non-negotiables. I think, or I hope, my wife is finally getting that.

The polygraph is "back on" as of this morning -- and I'm calling the examiner right now to schedule, hopefully for Monday afternoon next week.

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 12:16 PM

"Why were so utterly shitty to me? What would lead you to do that to me?"

I have been blunt about asking these questions with almost these exact phrases. I have no intention of backing off from that. If she won't answer, won't start working on answers, won't be introspective, then she's leaving me nothing to work with. My patience on this has grown thin, so I'm not going to sit around 10 years waiting. The clock is ticking, and it is ticking fast.

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 13:07 PM

Polygraph has been scheduled for Monday afternoon.

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 13:17 PM

She truthfully doesnít want the poly, I also believe she truly still wants the marriage.

Yes, this was never an exit affair. It had different elements of cake-eating, plan A/plan B sexual strategy (although our sex was always very good and I can report that objectively), and a "fling"/good feelz affair. In fact, my wife has said in the past "it was just a fling" (some grade A minimization there).

Anyway....

Butforthegrace posted 12/17/2019 13:30 PM

In fact, my wife has said in the past "it was just a fling"

The classic retort to that type of minimizing is along the lines of: "Okay, so you would have no problem if I enjoy a fling or two as well?"

turnthepage posted 12/17/2019 13:53 PM

Hiking had an exit affair. She was running from herself, not me. There wasnít a damned thing wrong with our sex life either. The months after she confessed she was confusing as hell to follow but it was evident early to me she wanted the marriage. It was herself she hated. Manipulating was definitely there off and on until we started the divorce. I donít think it was intentional in some ways. Like you I reached a point where I decided I was going to be fine either way. When she realized it too a lot of the bullshit stopped. Hereís to you stopping the bullshit too buddy.

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 14:05 PM

And I am sooooo sick of the bullshit

I think I may have inadvertently reached what a lady who is not all that popular around here calls the ďmeh stage.

Although Iím still angry it just feels different now. All of a sudden, too. I know itís not sudden but has been a long time coming. But it feels sudden.

I think I will be a lot less indifferent about the impact a divorce would have on my kids and particularly my 10 year old. That will be gut wrenching, and Iíll have my own sobs about that.

But as for this particular moment and this particular bridge, Iím at meh. She either gets it or she doesnít.

[This message edited by Thumos at 2:06 PM, December 17th (Tuesday)]

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 14:17 PM

I am sorry if I am driving you crazy with all the posts, but I am just so sorry this is happening this way.

No one is driving me crazy with posts (well except for that guy that gratuitously called me immature and cowardly on another thread for staying with my wife). It helps a great deal more than I can say to have a community of people who have been through this trying to help me.

hikingout posted 12/17/2019 14:32 PM

That's good because when I said it I didn't know that H and I would be tag teaming you (this has never happened before). For some reason we are both very invested in what happens here, we were talking about it on the phone during my lunch. I think he chimed in because he said that people do not often see that the reason I know manipulation is because I have been that person.

Seriously though, I am glad to read about the type of IC you have been doing. We do not have any one who specializes in this area.

Thumos posted 12/17/2019 14:44 PM

That's good because when I said it I didn't know that H and I would be tag teaming you (this has never happened before). For some reason we are both very invested in what happens here, we were talking about it on the phone during my lunch. I think he chimed in because he said that people do not often see that the reason I know manipulation is because I have been that person.

I am really glad you are both chiming in and I canít believe Iím lucky enough to have that kind of perspective from you both. These are monumental decisions I am faced with. The pressure is tremendous and weighs me down. I feel lighter today, but that could change in a heartbeat if she fails the poly, or refuses to do it.

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