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When to walk away, or forgive.

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Marz posted 2/8/2020 04:06 AM

Itís never a mistake. Itís a conscious willing decision to cheat.

It takes time, effort and planning.

Living on hopium will just extend your stayin limbo.

squid posted 2/8/2020 06:07 AM

There shouldnt be a reason I cannot forgive my wife for a mistake. Then, the reality strikes that this was not a one time mistake, this mistake went on and in secret for almost three months, along with with the mistake of their "friendship" for the next 5 while we were in counseling.

Yes, good you realize that this was not a "mistake" but a series of calculated choices she made and rationalized as okay so long as you never found out. Is this a deal breaker? Only you can answer this question. No one would argue if it is.

Only time will tell if she is sincere in her efforts. Talk is cheap around here. Just don't offer R right away. Let her lead the R effort and see if she is consistent about it. We've seen this plenty of times around here. The WS says they're all in only to see the affair went further underground.

Good luck.

steadychevy posted 2/8/2020 07:00 AM

FuglyUnicorn, I and most of us have gone through the cycles of "we can make this work" to "how could I ever make this work and why would I want to" time and time again. Sometimes the unbidden thought process happens rapidly, up and down, over just a few minutes or maybe even seconds. It's the roller coaster. Vicious.

The decision to R or D is difficult. The decision to attempt R needs to be based on your WW's behaviour. Not about what she says but what she does. Actions over words. You say she is walking around like everything is okay. That isn't R action. That's rugsweeping.

I suggest the book "How to Help Your Spouse Heal From Your Affair" by Linda J. McDonald. It is short and an easy read. Give it to your WW but read it yourself, too. It will show you how a remorseful souse should act - what they do.

As has been said above, avoid Esther Perel videos like the plague. Poison.

As has also been said above - polygraph. It is my opinion as well as some other's who posted above that there was more than what has been revealed thus far. It's like the proverbial iceberg. There is a lot more to it than what you can see. Poly.

rshadursky posted 2/8/2020 12:53 PM

I feel like I am in the same boat. And because it takes them so long to actually admit to it, it feels like the betrayal and lack of trust just keeps coming. I am still struggling to know if my decision to stay was right. I still have days where I think I should walk away. I worry I'll never trust him again. I guess, what I am trying to offer is that you may not know any time soon whether it is best to stay or go. It might be a rollercoaster and you might have different feelings about reconciling daily. I think forgiveness is hard but necessary if you'd decide to stay. But this is no life-or-death situation, and unless your WS is pressuring you to decide, you don't need to have an absolute answer to what is best for you until you are ready. Good luck and I am sorry that you are in this situation.

Thumos posted 2/10/2020 11:58 AM

I and most of us have gone through the cycles of "we can make this work" to "how could I ever make this work and why would I want to" time and time again. Sometimes the unbidden thought process happens rapidly, up and down, over just a few minutes or maybe even seconds. It's the roller coaster. Vicious.

Vicious is exactly how I'd describe it too. Sometimes the cycles take seconds, sometimes hours, sometimes weeks or months. That's the feeling of ambivalence. It's very difficult.

I will say recovery is much more difficult and reconciliation is damn near impossible if the WS doesn't get it, rugsweeps, trickle truths, rationalizes, DARVOs you, lacks remorse, etc. Eventually, if that's the case, you will tire of the cycle and you'll simply want to get off that merry go round.

teacherjoggergal posted 2/11/2020 04:37 AM

Hello, first and foremost, I am very sorry that you are going through this situation to put you here in the first place. I know that has to be tough. I have never been married, but I have gone through betrayal in the past, and more importantly, I have seen firsthand how bad infidelity can hurt someone in a marriage. My brother had an affair a number of years back, and it shocked and surprised everyone. My sister-in-law more than anyone of course. In their case, it was a 6-month Affair he had with an old high school Crush from years back. from what they each told me, he was a little reluctant to give up the affair completely after she found out. In turn, there were times she would threaten him with divorce, stating how she could easily take him to the cleaners since he made the bulk of their household income. In the end, however, they did work things out and they have had a strong marriage ever since. She did learn to forgive him over time, although there I'm sure there are triggers at times. For example, Valentine's Day is coming up very soon. Several years after the affair, we were shopping together at the Hallmark store. We were browsing the Valentine's Day cards. There was one card that triggered her, brought her very close to tears right there in the store with me. It was a card that said to my one and only. It devastated her because they were each other's one and only oh, there first, and now she is no longer his lawn and only sexual partner. Before the affair, they had only been with each other. So I am not going to lie, the trigger stick around for a while. However, if they could get through an affair, I see it possible to also stay together through this. I hope that helps.

dblackstar2002 posted 2/11/2020 06:50 AM

I have a mantra I find myself saying throughout my life. If people constantly treat you bad, It says a lot about what they think of you. If you allow them to continue to treat you bad, It says allot about what you think of yourself.....

Buffer posted 2/11/2020 19:45 PM

Hi brother
You have to tell her if your pain for the betrayal. She will just think it is roses when in fact it is poo 💩. Tell her there is really the prospect of D.
Buffer

FuglyUnicorn posted 2/15/2020 02:37 AM

So we have been to counseling a handful of times since the news of the affair broke. With all the reading and journaling I have been doing over the last few week, I have decided not to make a decision to walk or forgive until I experience and accept the entire range of emotions for the next month. Honestly I think making a mind map to identify all of my hurt, and all of my feelings on a single screen helps me identify the anger and resentment.

I understand that forgiveness is a process, and just because I forgive does not mean that we have to reconcile. Since my kids are going to be impacted by this decision, I have been able to focus on making it through day to day a little bit easier with the knowledge that waiting may prevent them from growing up in a broken home.

Our counselor is seeing us on a one on one basis as well as in couple counseling. I will keep you all updated as the days progress. I am not totally optimistic, but I am not hopeless either.

faithfulman posted 2/15/2020 11:01 AM

Our counselor is seeing us on a one on one basis as well as in couple counseling. I will keep you all updated as the days progress. I am not totally optimistic, but I am not hopeless either.

Big chance in her individual sessions she is feeding the counselor lies, misrepresenting the facts and her motivations, omitting important data, and rewriting history, while the counselor is figuring out how to "keep the marriage together" AKA cooking up ways for you to be responsible for choking down the shit sandwich of your wife's actions.

This is a bad combo, and don't be surprised if you are cast as the bad guy and her actions due to something you did or didn't do. Expect to be told what you need to do to keep your wife from cheating,

Reject anything that does not come back as absolute responsibility and transparency.

[This message edited by faithfulman at 11:18 AM, February 15th (Saturday)]

heartbroken_kk posted 2/15/2020 11:24 AM

I thought I'd comment a little about what you are going through. It seems like this is an opportunity for you to develop your new life of sobriety into a new, more resilient you. You are a man who has faced his own weakness, his own dishonesty about his drinking, and made a determination to change.

You decided to become a better man for the rest of your life.

You have a wife who is on her own timeline and on her own level of commitment and healing for her own moral failure. Her failure to uphold her marriage vows is all on her, and no excuse making can put it on you.

I suggest you talk to your counselor about finding another counselor. This person should be either your own personal individual counselor (IC) or the marriage counselor (MC). You should not be going to the same person for both. This is not a good practice, I have personal experience that this doesn't work and can not only be ineffective can be harmful. Ask your MC to choose one of the two roles and offer you a list of other counselors to interview for the other role.

Dive into your own personal counselling in private. Work on yourself. I changed my life due to infidelity, it was a horrible awful terrible thing and I wish it had never happened, but it did. So I determined to make something out of that and that was to make me into the person I wanted to be. I called it my self-improvement project. I worked hard in counselling and created new habits and ways of being in the world. I worked to quit lying to myself and to everyone else. I did the homework assigned to me so I could grow, and get out of my own way as a person. I'm now very successful and happy.

During that time I found may way forward in the relationship and decided to divorce, but that doesn't necessarily have to be your path.

You can reconcile if your wife does her work. Or you can split and make your life work well going forward without her as your wife, instead you can co-parent until your kids are grown. Divorce doesn't mean the end of happiness for you or your children. There is a life ahead of you, and it's 100% in your power to choose your own direction. If your wife comes along then that's OK but it's also OK if she doesn't.

Focus on yourself and your healing as a person who needs it.

squid posted 2/15/2020 12:23 PM

Terrible idea for your MC to also be each of your IC. This is what I experienced. The MC found it his "mission" to make sure that we stayed together. Which meant practically rugsweeping the affair and minimizing the damage. Essentially, "get over it" and move on. There was no focus on XWW's character flaw.

DO NOT FALL INTO THIS MISTAKE.

Get separate IC's and stay away from MC for a while. Work on yourselves.

Just as faithfulman pointed out, your WW may not be completely honest with the IC in her sessions. And there is a possibility of the two of them corroborating her narrative just to keep you satisfied enough to stay together. This actually happened to me.

YMMV but what you are doing goes against the common advice here. Tread very cautiously.

MickeyBill2016 posted 2/15/2020 13:03 PM

Honestly I think making a mind map to identify all of my hurt, and all of my feelings on a single screen helps me identify the anger and resentment.

I found something like that helped me out. I would rate every day 1(bad)-10(good) on the ical...
After a few weeks I saw an arc going to me getting better rather than worse. There were a lot of 5 and more 1 than 10 but it made me realizes that things were not as good or as bad as I thought they were.

FuglyUnicorn posted 2/16/2020 08:53 AM

Well this isn't necessary me purposely going against anyone's advice. The counselor had recommended for us to see them individually for a session. When I had seen the counselor, a lot of the questions were geared toward not only how I was holding up, but if I feel that my wife had a vendetta against me for drinking as long as what I had. They were very direct with me with their observations of my wife in regards to her body language when certain topics would come up. I do not have another session scheduled to see her one on one like that, neither does my wife. That being said, I will be cautious and probe/ask questions if they feel that another one is warranted.

These last two weeks have been a killer for me. Going to the gym now, I appreciate the pain more than anything. Anything that will take the knife out of my emotions. Friday, I was triggered and broke down in the middle of a review with my boss. I was given top 1% work performance for the entire company (500+), and that just triggered the tears. I can do great work for someone else, but I failed so hard at keeping my own shit together. Seems to be the trend with me. The more compliments and awards I win, the shittier things seem to be at home. Now I am at a point that I dont even know if I have a home anymore

[This message edited by FuglyUnicorn at 9:01 AM, February 16th (Sunday)]

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