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Feeling Stuck in Anger/Plain of Lethal Flatness Phase

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KingofNothing posted 1/10/2020 13:16 PM

OBS is ďreconciledĒ to my wifeís AP bc APís daddy built them a big new custom luxury home (after I exposed the affair).

Jeez, I always find something new in here. Does this mean they actually moved out of your neighborhood? That would be a bonus.

Her unsolicited offer to take a second polygraph and then retracting that offer when I took her up on it.

I meant to ask about this. What is her ostensible reason for rejecting a second attempt to clear her name? I would think taking the poly for a second time would totally be in her self interest.

[This message edited by KingofNothing at 1:18 PM, January 10th (Friday)]

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:05 PM

No they previously lived in a neighborhood not far from ours -- and only moved into the neighborhood after the affair after building the big new house.

They live about a mile from our home now in the same neighborhood.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:07 PM

What is her ostensible reason for rejecting a second attempt to clear her name? I would think taking the poly for a second time would totally be in her self interest.

She doesn't have a reason. Or her reasons are all over the map. Keep in mind she backpedaled away from this furiously the moment I took her up on it THE SAME DAY she had proferred it. So obviously my calling her bluff showed it was an empty offer in the first place. I can only assume she offered it up to me that morning as a way of mollifying me and then she thought I wouldn't go through with it.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:10 PM

You knew in your gut before that she wasn't being honest. You've known it for years. That feeling is not going away but your attempts to second guess yourself now are what bargaining looks like.

Nailed it.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:24 PM

I think there's a difference between "don't do what I did" and "don't do what I'm still doing." The former is a hard lesson learned through bitter experience. The latter is "those who can't, teach."

At the risk of hi-jacking my own thread I want to address this. Also I want to address another comment by a new member we've never seen before who has no identification as to whether they are a betrayed spouse or a wayward spouse and who evidently wants me to shut my big yapper.

So as to the contention that I should just shut up -- yeah, not gonna happen. If people think I'm a hypocrite, fine. It's an anonymous website and I can say whatever I want as long as I abide by SI's guidelines. So that person can jump off a cliff. I'll be posting anywhere I want as often as I want.

But BraveSirRobin raises a more nuanced, kindly point so I thought I would address it:

1. In the JFO forum, which is where I post most often, I've been very consistent. I almost never recommend R or D unless it's a case of:
a. Dating - just run from that shit show
b. Serial cheater
c. Engaged and not married
d. Young marrieds with no kids and no real financial entanglements.

2. What I do offer over and over is what I call a "package of non-negotiables" -- I've also said over and over that this package is a prerequisite to avoiding limbo and not a panacea and that it won't make a decision on R or D, but merely provides more data for a betrayed spouse to make an informed decision.

3. If you look at the list of non-negotiables I recommend, I'm not only consistent, I also point how and where I failed to do some of these things, but then I also note that I'm doing them now. And indeed, I have done them. I've done them all at this point -- in my case, in slow motion which led to painful limbo I want others to avoid. That's why I always recommend as much speed as possible and "shock and awe."

4. In my case, I actually did some of the shock and awe and it worked to my advantage (I VAR'd, I exposed to her family, I got NC and blew up the fantasy bigtime, I demanded she read McDonald's book) but it wasn't complete enough (I didn't get a written timeline, didn't get a polygraph until recently etc). And I wish I'd had someone laying it out for me so precisely back then. So I'm trying to do betrayed spouses in JFO a solid that I didn't get myself. I'm not only consistent and I'm not only avoiding in most cases advocating for R and D, I'm also providing my own case study as an example of what not to do, and I'm being candid with people in JFO about it.

I intend to keep posting in JFO just as I have. Not backing away. I hope people in JFO can learn from my mistakes and avoid a painful limbo that I find myself in. If I can save one person from that, I'll be a happy man. I don't think that's hypocritical at all.

In my case, doing the entire list of non-negotiables -- yes the entire thing -- has been beneficial and it has worked as the prerequisite (not the panacea) I describe it as routinely in JFO. I find myself a lot more clear-headed these days than I was in August. Now that's subjective, because I'm the only one who can report what's happening in my head. But I can tell you I was a real mess back in August, and I'm better now. Not as better as I'd hoped to be, but better.

I'll report back later with a short update on a plan my therapist helped me develop for some next steps today.

P.S. The last (and only) thing on my list of non-negotiables I haven't gotten yet is a post nup. My wife has offered and I'm taking her up on it.

[This message edited by Thumos at 2:31 PM, January 10th (Friday)]

KingofNothing posted 1/10/2020 14:32 PM

Don't shut up even for a second, Thumos, you are eminently sensible and I value your posts.

I wish I'd had someone laying it out for me so precisely back then. So I'm trying to do betrayed spouses in JFO a solid that I didn't get myself. I'm not only consistent and I'm not only avoiding in most cases advocating for R and D, I'm also providing my own case study as an example of what not to do, and I'm being candid with people in JFO about it.

I found SI relatively late for myself. I'm 3 Years D. Yet I am plagued by doubt, anger, and the woulda coulda shouldas.. You may recall me complimenting one of those "package of non negotiable" posts about a month ago. I wish I had had something like that 4 years ago. Hell, I wish I had known what a 180 was, 4 years ago.

In any event, I find this thread very motivating for some reason.


Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:33 PM

I am glad someone else brought up the other OBS - you all have compared notes in the past? I just wondered if she would have info you don't. If I were you I believe I would want the truth and your wife obviously isn't going to budge.

Yes, I reached out to the OBS to compare notes. She didn't want to do that -- probably because she wanted to rugsweep and get that sweet new custom home her FIL was willing to provide, and probably because her own marriage with her cheating husband started after she cheated with him on her first husband. But I can only surmise.

Butforthegrace posted 1/10/2020 14:34 PM

So I'm trying to do betrayed spouses in JFO a solid that I didn't get myself. I'm not only consistent and I'm not only avoiding in most cases advocating for R and D, I'm also providing my own case study as an example of what not to do, and I'm being candid with people in JFO about it.

I agree with this and find that some of the criticisms of your posts smack of the type of "semi-reading" that people tend to do in a hurry on their phones between other stuff.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:36 PM

Don't shut up even for a second, Thumos, you are eminently sensible and I value your posts.

Thanks man. I have diarrhea of the keyboard so it would be difficult for me to shut up even if I wanted to. And I don't want to.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:37 PM

I agree with this and find that some of the criticisms of your posts smack of the type of "semi-reading" that people tend to do in a hurry on their phones between other stuff.

Gimme an example and I'll try to address that going forward. I'm a big believer in receiving critical feedback.

Butforthegrace posted 1/10/2020 14:38 PM

Gimme an example and I'll try to address that going forward. I'm a big believer in receiving critical feedback

I mean other people semi-reading your posts.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 14:39 PM

Yeah I misread your post, which was ironic because that was your point!

hikingout posted 1/10/2020 15:12 PM

I wish people would stop with the hypocrite posts.

Our parents taught us because they learned from their mistakes. We teach our kids because we learned from ours. When I, a WS, post in the WS forum telling someone to stop doing something, you can rest assured there was a point in time I did those things and that's why I know they aren't helping.

Thumos, you were kind of taking a break from this thread because literally you are at the biggest fork in the road thus far. Post if you need to, step away if you need to. And, you do not have to justify your decisions of what you do to anyone, or as I said before to legitimize yourself as someone who can advise others here. That's the biggest absurdity I might have ever seen on this site. Show me a BS or a WS who doesn't wish they would have done something differently and tell others about it. Noone knows how to do this.

I do think maybe the best advice I saw so far today came from Isurvivedsofar. I think until your wife gets to the consequences of what she has done she is holding on for dear life not to have to get to them. It's keeping you guys in limbo. Anything can happen moving forward but until she abandons her post, she will keep you in limbo for as long as you are willing to stay there.

I am so sorry for what you are going through right now.

Butforthegrace posted 1/10/2020 15:14 PM

but until she abandons her post, she will keep you in limbo for as long as you are willing to stay there.

Exactly

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 15:18 PM

That's the biggest absurdity I might have ever seen on this site. Show me a BS or a WS who doesn't wish they would have done something differently and tell others about it. Noone knows how to do this.

Thank you hikingout, you've been nothing but supportive and kind. Your words mean a lot.

Tseratievig posted 1/10/2020 15:22 PM

Thumos, you were kind of taking a break from this thread because literally you are at the biggest fork in the road thus far.

I know I posted a true story that kinda resurrected this thread. It was the tennis pro story. Itís my way of encouraging Thumos to do as heís saying in so many other threads. I get the hypocrisy comments, but that wasnít my intent. I believe I know exactly what Thumos would tell someone who was experiencing exactly what heís currently experiencing, especially once she failed the polygraph to the level she failed.

hikingout posted 1/10/2020 15:34 PM

No, I got that you were trying to get him to say to himself advice he would give someone else. There was a poster that flat out called him a hypocrite. That's what I was responding to. I didn't mind really what BSR wrote either. I guess with all of it together it was starting to sound like a "group" feeling and I only commented because I don't really believe it is. Everyone has to take their time and make their own decisions.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 15:45 PM

Okay now that we've completed (for now) the great debate on who is the biggest hyprocrite around here (pretty much all of us) I think it's time to get back to me, me, and me.

Quick update:

I met with therapist today and it was very helpful. We came up with a short plan for some next steps over the next couple of weeks. I'm going to be seeing him on a biweekly basis because I don't think I need to see him every week and because I don't want to pay him that much. He's open to that and open to stepping up the frequency if I need it.

1. We walked through everything we know now about my WW and whether she's being truthful, how the poly went down, how she behaved before and after, the factors from the affair itself and the past three years, etc. I asked him what he thought about it. His response: "It's certainly shady." This was the most candid response I've gotten from a therapist thus far; I find a lot of them hem and haw and do a lot of beard stroking.

2. He wants to help me over the next few months "learn how to be happy without relying on your WW's cooperation." His words. He wants me to be in a position where I can say yes, a woman can break my heart, but no, she can't destroy my life. He said I need to do that bc it's obvious this has destroyed me, and he never wants me to be in that position again. In other words, he wants to be vulnerable enough to trust a woman (any woman if I decided to divorce) but also resilient enough to be less dependent on the outcome of a relationship with a woman for my happiness. Nota bene: this isn't a rugsweeping maneuver. Essentially, he's recommending a soft/mid-level 180. I think this is easier for me than a hard 180. A hard 180 sounds pretty difficult to do in my situation and would be kind of like Dwight in The Office doing the "shun/unshun" maneuver (in other words, it would look and feel stupid and inauthentic). I have some issues with the 180 (similar to a critique offered by a certain lady who isn't welcome here on SI) but I think it works in the short term.

3. He said I've spent a lot of my life in my work and personal life focusing on the wellbeing of other people. Time to focus on mine.

4. As I said, essentially he wants me to work on implementing a soft 180 as I start to figure out what I want. To that end, I'm going to be celibate with my wife. I'll be telling her tonight. Sex at this point is simply muddying the waters and not allowing me to think clearly. I need to be in "monk mode" for a bit. I can easily be put in a p*ssy coma (sorry to be blunt) and I need to stop that cycle for awhile. Naturally since my sex drive is high, we will see how long I can actually do this. Maybe I'll be in monk mode for a whole day I kid, I kid. My therapist told me to simply say I want to do this for awhile, unspecified, that I may have moments of weakness and that it isn't intended to wound or punish.

My WW and I have engaged in a high degree of very regular hysterical bonding. It's healthy and not healthy. It helps and it doesn't help. It's awesome but also makes me feel tawdry and always comes with mind movies. In other words, it's a real mindf*ck. I need to step back from it.

5. I'll be moving forward with the post nup offer from my wife. I'm pretty naÔve about what these actually look like, so if anyone has any tangible suggestions on this, I'm all ears and eyes.

6. I'm seeing a divorce attorney next week to understand what a separation and divorce actually entails. I've already alluded to this, but my wife and I have a lot of practical work to do on finances and getting our home ready to sell. It's a nice home, but it needs some updating. We'd take a loss on it in the current market and I'm loathe to lose money on such an important investment. That's the cold, practical part of me talking and if that means delaying a divorce or separation so be it.

I won't be implementing an in home separation. I think these are hellish and sound nearly impossible. Frankly, our home life is very stable and we get along well (I think I've stated this before, I know it sounds weird, but it is what it is). It would be selfish and pig-headed of me to invoke an in-home separation, creating tension where there hasn't been and foist that on my kids when the tension in the household is low.

Yes, I can go to a cooking class with my wife the same day I tell her I think she's lying to me and that reconciliation is not probable without truth and transparency. Yes, again that's weird. It's been my reality the past three years.

My therapist and I today did talk about a "therapeutic separation" but this is not in-home. I'd like to talk to a divorce attorney first because to be honest I have no understanding of what the reality of the divorce process looks like at all. I've never given it a thought in my life and it's a mystery to me.

A therapeutic separation might be beneficial, but again I'm not a selfish twit and there are children to consider here and the impact adult actions have on them.

So that's a short term plan that gives me at least some forward direction now that I've completed my own patented, trademarked recommended semi-hypocritical "package of non-negotiables."

Hope you all have a great weekend.

P.S. Oh, and the "emotional restitution" phase of therapy is on hold as I implement these steps. My therapist said today they prefer to reserve emotional restitution for couples that are actively moving forward in reconciliation. I told him I understood that, but I didn't understand why that wouldn't be helpful to me in any case -- whether we R or D. In any case, that thing is not going to be happening at the moment.

[This message edited by Thumos at 3:59 PM, January 10th (Friday)]

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 15:46 PM

that wasnít my intent. I believe I know exactly what Thumos would tell someone who was experiencing exactly what heís currently experiencing, especially once she failed the polygraph to the level she failed.

I got what you were saying, Tseratievig, I was actually responding to another poster who just showed up out the blue and seemed to appoint themselves the commissar of hypocrisy and free speech.

Thumos posted 1/10/2020 15:47 PM

I didn't mind really what BSR wrote either.

I didn't mind it, either. She's been one of the kindest, most helpful commenters I've ever read.

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