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When all the realities set in..

ChanceAtLife35 posted 9/29/2019 13:15 PM

Long post, but i have to get this out. This past week i am reflecting on what was happening during my A's and i realize some really traumatic events occurred while i was being a selfish cheating a-hole. During the last A which lasted 14 months, i am crippled and torn up in the heart at what was going on in my life when i was too busy living in a false reality performing selfishly not caring about anyone even my BW but myself having a PA. During this time, my Mom was diagnosed with a rare form of skin cancer(now in remission), my BW's grandma almost died(still living thankfully), my brother was diagnosed with cancer(went through chemo and now cancer free), I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, my BW was shot at by a road rage driver, i had her risk her life driving while intoxicated to be with AP for her birthday, my DS was diagnosed with epilepsy, and my DD had a major tooth extraction surgery. And on top of that my BW was working her ass off tirelessly to complete one of many degrees she is on track to complete and was terminated from a job ALL while i am literally fucking screwing her over. I swear when i think about all of this i am stunned and shocked at how i was living this double life pretending to be the perfect wife and acting like i was so empathic when i all i really cared about myself. I remember desperately watching my every move and dressing the part which i see now how fake i was to be there for people when i was doing for my own selfish benefits. How disgusting and cowardly is that? I have to call my own self out because this is sickening to me now when i think about how i was. Yes, i discovered now just how broken and in pain i was and that i had horrible coping mechanisms, but i have to own up to this shit and truly see myself and just how sick and horrible i was to my BW, DD, DS, and family.

Oh and to add, i even proposed to by BW 3 months before i got caught cheating. It was a surprise elaborate proposal too where i spent 3 thousand dollars on it and had all of her close friends and family there(first time our Mom's met by the way). I was all like "this is for my BW" Bullshit, it was all about me!! UGH!! i am such an ass!! WOW. All the while i am still heavy into my A, not caring, or loving anyone, but myself. As long as i do just enough and not get caught. I am so grateful i see myself now and my BW even allows me to set a toe nail in our home. And i had the nerve to still be a little bitch and run her in painful circles for a little over a year before i finally "got it." Things are slowly getting better, but i still have some F-ups every day, but NOT as bad thankfully. I really do show my humility and gratitude daily.

I do think about what life would be like too if i had stayed with the AP. She is just like me, we used each other like leaches trying to fulfill needs to feel better about ourselves. Using sex to feel love, wanted, you name it. I know it would have been horrible being with her. She is an alcoholic and drug head. She lives off of section 8 and uses everyone including her own mother. With who i was at that time, i would have probably been right there with her smoking, drinking, being abusive, controlling and insecure as hell. Fucked up my career and had no relationships with anyone.

F-that. Now, i am taking care of myself, doing what it takes to get better. Plan on going back to school and get into the career i have always wanted and just not trying to screw people over in any way especially my BW. I no longer see her as a reflection of myself. I now have so much admiration and respect for her while trying to love and build a relationship with her. Although she has not considered R since d-day, i have now been giving the "friendship" status which i am highly grateful for. I am at a point where yes, deep down i hope for R, but her life has been fucked over since she was a child, so if anything i want her to heal and live her best life whether i am in her life or not. She is the most intelligent, loving, caring, giving human i have ever met in my life.

We could have been so much further along in our lives if I had bothered to try. To be a partner instead of a taker, a user.

Has this ever happened to any one you?

I really just needed to get this out and want feedback

JBWD posted 9/29/2019 15:47 PM

My father attempted suicide by pills at 82 y/o dealing with the pain of lifelong ignored depression combined with myeloma that caused a degree of pain.

Rushed home from a work trip to help out at home. Spoke to AP as much as my BW. Actually stayed with AP before hopping on the plane to head home as opposed to seeing BW and my children.

Truly revolting. Especially when having to confront my father on the ways he retreated from my mother when she worked so hard to try and keep him engaged/happy.

Like so many other things couldnít even see the shit I was wallowing in at the same time. Slowly dawned and got me close to disclosure but not before found out... Almost exactly a year ago.

ChanceAtLife35 posted 9/30/2019 09:31 AM


Thank you for the response. Sorry to hear about your experiences and I can agree to just how much I didn't realize what I was drowning myself in. It's good you were able to recognize what was going on. Hope things are better for you now.

hikingout posted 9/30/2019 09:56 AM

Yes, there are many aha moments, epiphanies along the way. I still have them on a fairly regular basis. Some of them come from being on this site.

When we can truly want what's best for another person, that's a step towards understanding love. I think for so long in most of our lives we all like to be taken by the feelings of being "in love". I am very much in love right now, my warm glowy feelings are there. But, it has to go deeper than that. Friendship is a good basis in which to rebuild our thoughts surrounding love. Being a good friend means being there for someone, being loyal to them, helping them, listening to them without judgement. I could go on and on, but being a good friend has many of the same actions as being a good life partner. My grandmother always told us - marry your best friend, your marriage will be easy.

I think in your case and in mine - we were not a good friend to ourselves. We were not looking out for what was in our best interests either. I know for me the things I told myself - the ugly self talk - those were things I would never have told myself if I were my own best friend.

Practice that - with yourself and with Maise. I think you will learn a lot about the person you want to be to yourself, and to a true friend. It's a very basic skill yet so many of us never learn to master it. It sounds like you are still finding your footing in many ways, but one good epiphany can bring on another.

And here is why I think you are still finding your footing:

I do think about what life would be like too if i had stayed with the AP. She is just like me, we used each other like leaches trying to fulfill needs to feel better about ourselves. Using sex to feel love, wanted, you name it. I know it would have been horrible being with her. She is an alcoholic and drug head. She lives off of section 8 and uses everyone including her own mother. With who i was at that time, i would have probably been right there with her smoking, drinking, being abusive, controlling and insecure as hell. Fucked up my career and had no relationships with anyone.

I remember this stage, realizing what I was about to give up my life for and understanding that the fantasy wouldn't match the reality. This is a really good step. But, continue to broaden from there...are you saying this because she didn't bring value to your life? Not that she would have at all, I think you are right she wouldn't - I am just pointing out you may still be comparing value and love here. But, all in all it doesn't matter greatly - seeing the AP realistically is always needed in order to understand how much of what we were doing was built up in our heads. It gives you a lot of space to work with in terms of the ways we delude ourselves, mislead ourselves. I only point it out as value versus love because I think this ephiphany gives you space to look at that?

Keep going. I have been hands off for a while, I was hoping you would come to a place where you could start to explore being proactive. For so long it seemed like you were stuck, and there were many weeks I would see you come on and say "I'm still not doing what I need to do". I really thought there was a period of time you were posting FOR maise rather than for yourself.

Sometimes the rest of us can't tell you how to get your butt in gear, but once you start down the path we can help you build on it. I think you may be getting to that stage so that's a really big step forward. Keep taking them.

ChanceAtLife35 posted 9/30/2019 22:18 PM

Hikingout...You know, i can normally respond to what others have said to my topics at work, but after i read yours i just couldn't. It was about all the things you said and i needed time to sit with it. I even thought to myself just how damn good you are at seeing and reading people, even virtually. First, i was taken aback about the "friendship" part of your response as i swear on Friday i literally looked up "What does it take to be a really good friend?" I found a really good Wiki How article and guess what the first thing said you need to be in order to be a good friend? "BE YOURSELF." I damn near laughed out loud as i know darn good well i was fake as hell. A shell of a person who were a mask that was covered in thick and slimy lies. I already knew this because of this experience, it just confirms why i could not build authentic friendships with anyone. I was always afraid to let people in if they knew who i was or because of my sexuality and everything else in between. Recently and i am most grateful for it, i finally received the "friend" title from my BW. It's rocky of course, and i am taking all steps to build it based on honesty and being my true self.

I was talking to her about this earlier and she reminded me of how many times she would bring up how much were not friends at all because i wasn't my true self. Very sad and confusing to hear given that we were in a relationship for over 5 years. I remember when she first told me, i later called my Mom and asked her what was the secret to she and my Dad's 40 year marriage and she replied with "We started off as best friends and the friendship was a big part of our marriage." I damn near went into a frantic state of confusion and fear. Sadness followed as i knew how much my BW and i were different, it was what i was internalizing that kept a wall between any effort on my part to resolve this in addition to the other hardships within our relationship. Lately, we find ourselves laughing more and spending more time with each other. I am asking more questions and engaging in beyond my usual surface and general conversations. I literally make sure i am not trying to be fake or selfish to make situations about me. The only thing that's still very challenging to me is when she has triggers(not as many for her thankfully) or when she questions the physical aspect with the AP. I just appreciate now, that i am not looking at myself or trying to use her or intently hurt her in any way.

OK. LOVE vs VALUE- I have heard these words my entire life, and did not ever understand it for myself or when it came to myself when involved with others. I did not feel loved as a child only externally(fed, clothed, catered to). SO of course, i did not love myself and felt lonely and empty inside most of my life. With that said, i turned to others to receive what i thought was "love." I confused love with neediness, physical attraction, pity/or the need to rescue or to be rescued. When i read what you wrote about how my life would have been like when i got with the AP, what you said resonated and i thought it was selfish as hell to say. To the degree of "What you got to give me? What do i get out of it? How are you going to make me feel good about myself?

With my BW, i got the best life. An amazing, beautiful, intelligent being. A family, love, exploration, guidance, uplifting, learning and growing, 2 beautiful kids, stability, quality time, self care, togetherness, support, and so much more.

I was asked what if AP had a good job, car, no drugs/alcohol, lived in a nice house etc? My brutally honest answer was still no. I know deep down i want my life with my BW and kids. I was devastated and stir crazy when i was not living with them for 45 days.

And yes(by all means, call me the F out as i need to be), confession: I was posting for Maise at times. I was stuck in shame and lies at that time. I was focusing on one outcome and still being a selfish rug sweeping ass. She questioned my lack of engaging on the site, and it was because i was so ashamed of myself and was horribly disconnected with my feelings and was so deep in my fog of everything that was happening. I get on here now for me and i can see that what i say here is actually for insight and support.

The love vs value along with the friendship aspect are very important for me to learn and gain the knowledge and live by to be a better me. For myself as well as my relationship of any kind with them. I truly appreciate your insight.

hikingout posted 10/1/2019 10:58 AM

I think you took in what I said to a T. I think there is a lot in here that you say is very encouraging. You seem to be looking at being proactive in tangible ways for yourself and I really think that's great.

Also, I wasn't really calling you out for posting just for Maise. I think that's a natural tendency a lot of WS do before they start getting it if their BS is here. Mine wasn't. Well, at least I didn't think he was at that time. But, if he had been it undoubtedly would have shaded my responses at times. Now, there is no reason for that, there is nothing I say here that is anything he hasn't already heard and gone over and over. And, so some of that can be at play for you - if you have gotten more honest with yourself and with her then you will be able to be more honest here as a natural result.

I can understand how much FOO comes into this. I am still discovering the depths of that and having little realizations. My counselor told me once that I need to cradle that inner child and be the adult that I needed to have around me for her. And, there is a lot that is profound in that statement. I think in many ways, when I wasn't being authentic and when I was having an affair it was a form of bringing chaos back into my life. It was disappointing to that little girl inside in some ways. I had been someone she could rely on all that time and then I disappointed her in a way that everyone else did. I know that's really kind of out there, but it's a way I have of thinking of it after all that therapy. Be the grown up that little kid never had. The one that she can look up to and aspire to be...there is something deeply healing in that, so I share that with you in the case it helps you frame it someday.

[This message edited by hikingout at 10:59 AM, October 1st (Tuesday)]

ChanceAtLife35 posted 10/1/2019 14:21 PM


Greatly appreciate your response. I am treating this process as a continuos effort and always very proactive up until I almost asleep. Why not give it all I got? I have destroyed the my BW life into pieces. This is the only real life changing moment of my life. My brain doesnít seem to stop with this process as I have already had so many years running away from myself and life itself. It is very encouraging and painfully beautiful when I discover new things about myself or when my BW helps me have Aha moments.

Speaking of she actually said the same thing you said about the little girl in me. Months ago which to this day are some of the hardest cries and deepest pains I ever felt. There were times that I blamed the little me for things that were definitely not my fault. Especially from birth up until school age. Sadly, those moments transpired some very horrible coping mechanisms to protect myself from those I wanted to love and care for me. Of course it carried on into adulthood and I still didnít have a clue what was happening to me and whyuntil dday and after. My BW always questioned my behaviors and closed mindedness and I just continued to build the wall wider and wider between us. I wasnít given the opportunity to learn how to trust others as a child so that was very detrimental to myself and others as an adult.

Now, with the digging during this process and I sight from my BW, I have cried many days and nights for little bow legged me(outgrew being bow legged). It was never my fault, the real me was just shunned and told to keep my feelings in. And with everything in me I will cradle the little me and be the most resilient, happy, loving, caring, and best version of me. I am changing everything about me.

I agree, the A brought more chaos than the last 30 years of my life. Hurting my BW and kids to the degree that I did will take a lot of work to heal and make amends. I wonít give up or let myself down like I have all this time here on out. Itís great to hear you are gaining so much knowledge and aha moments on a regular basis. Especially working tirelessly to being the best adult version of yourself for the little kid in you. Keep up the amazing work you have done and continue to do.

[This message edited by ChanceAtLife35 at 2:23 PM, October 1st (Tuesday)]

JBWD posted 10/3/2019 13:22 PM

Yes, things are better. I have to recognize/acknowledge that the only benefit in true self-awareness is knowing I can keep from repeating. But itís too late for BW and me, and thatís mostly due to much more recent understanding about just how quick I was to believe I had resolution, when it was merely the surface.

But I understand who I was and continue to be ready should my wife allow me to work with her on her healing. In the meantime I continue.

ChanceAtLife35 posted 10/3/2019 19:49 PM


Happy to hear things are better for you.

I have to recognize/acknowledge that the only benefit in true self-awareness is knowing I can keep from repeating

That's exactly where i am at and it took a lot of humility, honesty, and gratitude to help me get there. Sorry to hear it's too late, but i see you are still hoping for some light to come out of this. My BW has not even thought of R yet. And i completely understand that with the mass destruction and trauma i committed. It's all about individual healing now and doing what's best for our kids.

I admire your continuous hard work and dedication to your process.

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