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Just found out....canít sleep, canít eat, canít breath.

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HeartbrokenRN posted 7/30/2020 22:16 PM

I know that i messed up by even offering him and ďoutĒ and a free pass to seek sex outside the marriage. I regret it with every part of my soul. I had envisioned a very different scenario in which there was a quick act of sex without emotion and i wouldnít find out so my heart would be protected but now i realize this wasnít possible. But I also think subconsciously it was a test. If i offered it now and he did it, he probably would have done it eventually and been even worse then. He made it clear he didnít think he could spend the next 10 years without sex. So i think i wanted to see just how far heíd be willing to go and I assumed that he would have done it eventually anyways.
So where do we go from here???? I honestly donít know. My WH is begging for me to give him another chance. He says he is willing to change all the things that led to me withholding sex and wonít abandon me and take me for granted again. But Iím just not sure our marriage is salavageable. So much was broken before this and I donít know if anything would be different the next time around. And to the person who wrote that this situation shouldnt have elicited the feelings I wrote in my original post, Iím sorry but I am entitled to my feelings and no can judge me for it. This man was my first date, my first kiss, my first love, and my first and ONLY lover. We have been together since we were 17 and have literally GROWN UP together. Our lives have been one for such a very long time. I am entitled to mourn the loss of that in whatever way i see fit. And part of my utter sadness and grief is because it affects my kids life, their lives are irrevocably changed forever as well and that makes the pain even worse....

[This message edited by HeartbrokenRN at 10:20 PM, July 30th (Thursday)]

ChamomileTea posted 7/30/2020 22:57 PM

My WH is begging for me to give him another chance. He says he is willing to change all the things that led to me withholding sex and wonít abandon me and take me for granted again.

Well, it sounds like the ball is in your court and that it's up to you if you want to reconcile or not. If you decide to go that route, you'll want a much better therapist. It's shocking to me that yours didn't intervene and stop you from putting this alternative out there. Usually, I'd recommend each of you going to IC first in order to resolve your trauma and whatever is underlying his values which made cheating an option. But in your case, I think a GOOD therapist could help you repair your communications, so you can get a better idea of whether you want to stay or not.

With COVID, most therapists are doing sessions online or by phone, so you might want to start by interviewing some who are well-versed in infidelity and trauma. And if that goes well, you might follow up with a sex therapist in order to find common ground on reintroducing sex to the marriage.

If, however, you're leaning toward divorce, you would do well to see an attorney and find out what that would look like for you in financial terms. Certainly, you should NOT resume any sexual activity until your WH has been tested for STDs by his doctor. In the meantime, I can't stress how important Self-Care is right now. Eat what you can, sleep when you can, keep hydrated, get some light exercise, and avoid alcohol. See your doctor for stress management if you continue to have problems with any of that.

You're going to be okay. I know that's hard to believe right now, but we're all here and every one of us has experienced some version of what you're going through. I'm not gonna kid you, it sucks... but the feelings fade and the pain is finite. Believe it.

((hugs))

tushnurse posted 7/31/2020 07:37 AM

He says he is willing to change all the things that led to me withholding sex and wonít abandon me and take me for granted again. But Iím just not sure our marriage is salavageable.

Words are cheap. Cheaters lie, and they do it well. But even if his intentions are to actually change, that means he has to start making those changes. One of the common things you will see here it to not listen to words, but watch actions. Actions is where you will see if your H is really doing the work to fix his shit, and help you heal and start over.

I get being each others firsts, and your Only. I too started dating my H at a young age. I was 15, he was 17. Walking away from a completely broken M is not a bad thing, and if that is what you need to do for now to heal your heart you should.

But like I said in my first post, you should see an attorney, learn what your right are and his obligations are. You shouldn't make the choice to D or R w/o doing this. It is information and knowledge that should help you determine what life would look like.

You don't have to make a decision today, tomorrow, next week, or next month. If you are considering the possiblity of attempting R though I would make my demands of the changes he needs to make be known to him, and then sit back and watch. Talk is cheap. Actions create change not words.

((((And Strength))))

ZoeS posted 7/31/2020 11:41 AM

I actually think it's really unfair to call this man a "cheater" and assign all the characteristics of cheaters to him - that they lie, etc.

HeartbrokenRN, I have so much sympathy for the pain you're feeling, but let's not call him a WH - he 100% had your permission to do what he did. You told him you "didn't care". I don't think you should beat yourself up, but I think it's important to be fair and take responsibility. It happened. Now it needs to be dealt with. We cannot blame others because they don't know what's going on in our heads.

It's totally normal to meet someone for dinner before you sleep together, and to talk. It's normal to have multiple messages. The rules that were set out don't sound very clear, and were not realistic, honestly. I'm sure a lot of the pain you're feeling is anger at yourself, as well as anger at him for YEARS of not meeting your needs. But you gave him a test that he was set up to fail. He didn't know it was a test.

Many cheating spouses do not automatically apologize and want to change. They don't offer to do the work. This man is. Your marriage sounds like it was awful for both of you. It seems like you've used emotional manipulation to try to control or fix things, maybe you didn't know what else to do... but it's not very healthy. Whatever he did, you refused to be intimate with him and withheld sex, seemingly to punish him. You gave him permission to have sex, then allowed your 13-year-old son to track his father and find out that he was with another woman, now he's the bad guy. That's all just really sad on every level.

I think you need counselling, to really dig into all the stuff that was there, together and separately, and see if it's something you want to save. If you go to a counsellor, you both need to take responsibility and change. Whether your marriage survives or not, for the sake of your own well-being and future relationships in general, dealing with the dysfunctional dynamic would be a very good idea.

ISuferedToGrowUp posted 7/31/2020 12:20 PM

He doesn't TALK or DATE with you to get SEX. Of xourse no romance at all.

He went to a DATE and TALKED amd ROMANCED his side piece to get SEX.

ISuferedToGrowUp posted 7/31/2020 12:22 PM

OP, Im so sorry, but if he has time to form emotional connections with them he had time to do with you too.

HeartbrokenRN posted 7/31/2020 12:53 PM

thatís whatís the hardest part. What he did with the woman he was with was what I had wanted from him all along. He never wanted a deep emotional connection with me. He always told me itís just how heís ďwiredĒ. But itís obvious that heís capable of it, I just wasnít good enough for him to put that effort into me......😢

tushnurse posted 7/31/2020 13:30 PM

But itís obvious that heís capable of it, I just wasnít good enough for him to put that effort into me......😢

Honey please read the healing library.... This had nothing to do w/ you or your short comings.

He is the one that didn't want to do the work to rebuild, and reconnect in his M. That doesn't mean you aren't worth it. It means he chose not to. Stop beating yourself up. Getting caught in the shame/guilt cycle serves you no purpose, and will get you stuck in your own journey.

ChamomileTea posted 7/31/2020 14:08 PM

...I just wasnít good enough for him to put that effort into me......😢

Sweetie, that's just not true. You ARE "good enough" and as his wife, you are the most worthy of his efforts. It's not right that he's capable of doing it but didn't bother to. That's on him, as is the fact that he went along with this arrangement to begin with. He should have said 'no', because in saying 'yes', he has cemented in your mind that sex is more important than being with you. That's the kind of shit he needs to work out in therapy, WHY he would prioritize sex over emotional connection with his own wife.

Can you share what's at the root of your sexual aversion? We're all anonymous here, and maybe it will help us give you better advice. You've said that your WH is your one and only. Some men aren't as good in the sack as they think they are, particularly ones who watch a lot of porn. For women, sometimes body image issues, previous abuse, or perimenopause can be problems. And what is clear already in your posts is that, for many women, there needs to be emotional connection and trust in order to be comfortable sexually. You haven't been getting that for a long time, even though you've told him about it.

I'll share with you that currently I'm in the same sort of stand-off with my WH. The guy cheated on me floridly five years ago with a bunch of trash he lined up on Craigslist. We worked through it and he made big changes. But the one change that didn't hold is communications. After about three years, he went back to his old habit of shutting me down whenever we talked; talking over me, changing the subject, etc. It's not even about his previous infidelity either. It's about ANYTHING which makes him marginally uncomfortable. So, I kept working at it for another year, but as of now sexual relations have broken down. And he can either suck it up and fix what's broken between us, or he can do without. I'm not offering any alternative either. He's not getting an out on this. If he wants sex, he needs to resolve the problem, but if he cheats, I'll divorce him. So, I get it. I understand how important that emotional connection can be.

You've also said your kids are distraught. Mine were young adults at the time of DDay, but still living at home. It's hard to keep them from siding with one parent or the other, particularly when one is clearly wrong. But what I did was take them each aside and reassure them that I was okay and that the problems between their father and I are between us, that I didn't want them picking sides, and that their relationship with each of us was safe and had nothing to do with the marital relationship. My WH was clearly the bad guy, as you might imagine. But even when a parent does bad things, their kids still love them, no matter how mad they are on our behalf. I didn't want mine to feel like they were betraying me by still caring about their dad. Over the course of time, I had to be a little forceful with them about staying out of my business, but I think in the long run, it's benefited them.

Have you had any thoughts on your preference, R or D? There's plenty of time, of course. Sometimes it's best just to take time and absorb the shock. That said, the WS isn't always so patient and we end up feeling pushed toward a decision. How is your WH's demeanor?

((hugs))

Carissima posted 7/31/2020 18:51 PM

I'm with Zoe, I'm not comfortable with labelling your husband a cheater. That's not to say I don't recognise and empathise with your pain.
I think you and your husband both got so bogged down and entrenched in your own side of the argument and refused to make any steps to resolve it as that would be giving in. Therefore you basically opened up your marriage and your husband took advantage of it.
I don't see that speaking to a girl on the internet and having dinner is building an emotional attachment, it's doing what people do for NSA sex all the time. Yes he kept it secret but you told him to. I agree the hotel close to you was wrong, I wonder how much lockdown restrictions played into that.
I do question how you think him disappearing with a girl for sex during a night out with his friends would be more discreet. Do you not think his friends would talk amongst themselves, to other friends, their partners etc? It seems to me that gossip would have a higher chance of being passed around.
Does your husband regret being caught or regret taking advantage of the option? Does he recognise the difference yet?
IMO you both have a lot of work to recognise how the situation got to this point. In the meantime make sure you take care of yourself.


HeartbrokenRN posted 7/31/2020 21:53 PM

[This message edited by HeartbrokenRN at 10:01 PM, July 31st (Friday)]

HeartbrokenRN posted 7/31/2020 22:00 PM

Chamomile tea, thank you so much for you response and for sharing your experiences. It helps to read how others are feeling during these tricky and difficult situations. Regarding my sex ďaversionĒ the reason is three-fold really. My husband and i had a great sex life during the early part of our marriage. Then kids happened and it slowed down and then we were maintaining our usual 1-2 times/month for many years. That seemed to be enough for both of us for the better part of the last 10 years. In the past 2 years, however, as the fighting and resentments escalated something changed in me. I felt so alone and abandoned and put second to both his work and the gym that I just shut down. My body wasnít attracted to him and every time he would touch me all I thought about was how much MYneeds werenít getting met on an emotional level and it felt wrong that I was expected to meet his needs when HE needed them. My body is connected to my heart and mind and when one shuts down the others do as well. Itís just how Iím wired. When my heart is wounded my body put up the defenses I guess.
Secondly I am 40 pounds overweight and feel badly about myself right now. You have to remember my husband spent HOURS at the gym and worked out 2-3 times a day EVERY DAY. Everything in life centered around him working out and Maintaining the perfect physique. when he didnít get to he always was unhappy. So hereís this man who IDOLIZES fitness and has a perfect body and here I am a 40 lb overweight mess and even thought he never complained I ALWAYS felt that I was a disappointment to him and never was comfortable being naked around him. Thirdly I had a hysterectomy 2 years ago and that had a SIGNIFICANT impact on my libido. I just didnít have those same urges he had and when you add that to the previous two reasons it just became too much.

ChamomileTea posted 8/1/2020 00:14 AM

This is going to sound a little counter-intuitive, but it sounds to me like you would do well to be a little more selfish. I know, right?... anathema to most wives and mothers. But the bottom line is that when we get to feeling this trod upon, it's usually because we haven't been TAKING enough for ourselves. Like many women, we're givers and we've given until we're spent and crabby about it. The cure to that is getting vocal about what we want and taking what we need.

I'm assuming by your username that you're a nurse, so I don't have to tell you the importance of getting your hormones tested. But what I will tell you, based on being a post-menapausal woman who got the last of her estrogen diced out by oophorectomy, is that it's not good enough for doctors to pat us on the nose and tell us that we're "normal for a woman your age". It's uncomfortable to have to stand up to your doctor, but there are some medications which are showing promise (like Osphena), and there are low-dose bioidentical hormones (usually sub-dermal pellet formulas), which don't have the dangerous side-effects we might see in traditional hormone replacement. It's bullshit that men get taken seriously when they have sexual complaints but women are so often fobbed off. I wouldn't call it selfish to advocate for oneself at the doctor's office, more like unpleasant, but sometimes you need to be the squeaky wheel, right?

Next, what bullshit is this that your WH gets to be a "gym rat" but you don't get equal time? He can certainly provide you with an amount of time equal to what he utilizes for himself, and if he won't... take it. Bear in mind that a skinny body is more likely to be your hang-up than his. The vast majority of men like to look at skinny girls, but most are very well pleased by a curvy girl who feels soft and scrumptious rather than bony in the sack. But if it truly bothers you, it's a solvable problem. I lost a wicked amount by using a calorie-counting app and lowering carbs... and then being a little selfish about what kind of food I was willing to cook. I think most of us totally get it. You have a family to feed and end up cooking to suit all of them when YOUR body is in need of a totally different style of nourishment. I kept sandwich fixings in stock, cooked what I wanted to eat, and if they liked it, fine. If not, they could make their own. Fuck if I was going to make a bunch of big carby dinners that I couldn't eat.

And lastly, I think the loss of emotional connection is the big ticket item. If your WH is as desperate as he says to repair this marriage, he'll LISTEN to you this time. There are some good books you two can read together which will help you resolve some of the communications problems at home. I like anything John Gottman, but in particular What Makes Love Last: How to Build Trust and Avoid Betrayal In it, he discusses the myriad ways we can measure trust in our relationship. I was surprised to find while doing the quizzes that even after I had answered in the affirmative such questions as "Has your spouse ever cheated?" and "Do you think your spouse will cheat?", my trust metric was quite high. It could be that there's plenty left between you and your WH to build on. Gottman also does a pretty good job in this book of talking cheating and other relational challenges. It's a good read. Look for an online article called "The Four Horseman" based on Gottman's work to get you started thinking about better communications. Whatever you do, replace that therapist you saw before. At best, s/he was ineffectual.

I know how the reality of a husband cheating can sock you in the gut. Like I said earlier, I could have been knocked down by a feather to find I still loved my WH after he had been so awful to me. Even five years later, it makes my breath catch to think he ACTUALLY put his hands (and everything else) all over those disgusting trolls. It's a visceral shock which goes all the way through you, I know. But you really WILL be okay. Step One though is to get a little more selfish and start advocating for the things you need.

((hugs))

Kaliber posted 8/1/2020 07:45 AM

ZoeS:
HeartbrokenRN, I have so much sympathy for the pain you're feeling, but let's not call him a WH - he 100% had your permission to do what he did. You told him you "didn't care". I don't think you should beat yourself up, but I think it's important to be fair and take responsibility. It happened. Now it needs to be dealt with. We cannot blame others because they don't know what's going on in our heads.

I agree calling him a WH or a cheater is wrong, he did not cheat and he is not a WH, you gave him permission HeartbrokenRN, lets not forget that and lose track of that!

However, I do believe he committed adultery regardless of the permission he got, sex outside your marriage frame is adultery.

ChamomileTea:
If your WH is as desperate as he says to repair this marriage, he'll LISTEN to you this time.
..
..
I know how the reality of a husband cheating can sock you in the gut.

I would love to know why you are labelling him as a WH and a cheater, are you seeing something we are not?

[This message edited by Kaliber at 8:35 AM, August 1st (Saturday)]

HeartbrokenRN posted 8/1/2020 08:03 AM

Just to clarify......he did NOT have permission to have any sort of relationship with another woman. He was not allowed to date them, and especially was not allowed to date them and bring them to our town and restaurants that we frequent before fucking them. What I gave him permission to do was go out and have meaningless sex or some sort of sexual release with a stranger. And I explicitly told him it had to be discreet and that i could never know about it. So yes, while he had permission to engage in an ďactĒ of sex, that is NOT what he did. He was wreckless and careless and made it so easy to be found out, so much so that my 13 year old tracked him to a hotel at 11PM at night. That is betrayal on a whole other level. Permission was given within very firm limits, but everything else he did was specifically NOT allowed and he knew it.

fareast posted 8/1/2020 08:13 AM

HeartbrokenRN:

Whether you gave your WH permission to have meaningless sex outside of your M or not, he still cheated. He Is a WH. Period. He made marital vows to you and himself that while married to you he would be faithful. He made the final decision to be unfaithful. It was his choice. You didnít force him to do anything. Being faithful is as much a vow to yourself as it is to your partner. How often do we see on these forums the WS giving the BS a Hall Pass to have an A if it will help them come to terms with being cheated on. If the BS acts on it, he/she is still a WS.

Kaliber posted 8/1/2020 09:52 AM

HeartbrokenRN:
Just to clarify......he did NOT have permission to have any sort of relationship with another woman. He was not allowed to date them, and especially was not allowed to date them and bring them to our town and restaurants that we frequent before fucking them. What I gave him permission to do was go out and have meaningless sex or some sort of sexual release with a stranger. And I explicitly told him it had to be discreet and that i could never know about it. So yes, while he had permission to engage in an ďactĒ of sex, that is NOT what he did. He was wreckless and careless and made it so easy to be found out, so much so that my 13 year old tracked him to a hotel at 11PM at night. That is betrayal on a whole other level. Permission was given within very firm limits, but everything else he did was specifically NOT allowed and he knew it.

Here is the problem that I see: How do you have meaningless sex or some sort of sexual release with a stranger without some sort of simple dating?
It's not possible, NSA sex has to have some sort of dating, this is how these things work, this is how hookups scene work, and not all type of dating involves emotional attachment!

It's like telling him to have sex with an escort/hooker but you got angry that he paid for it!

Look, you can't be blamed, and I'm not blaming you, because you have zero experience of the current hookup scene, so does your husband, it's not like he is a player and knows what to do, he is learning how these thing work, and screw-ups are bound to happen, you have to know that and except that.

So your problem here is the way he did the encounters, the logistics of it, not that he cheated or betrayed you because he didn't!

The grave mistake you did is by giving him a green pass to commit adultery outside your marriage and tried to control the outcome, you have opened a door that should not have been opened and expected your husband who had zero experience (like you) to not screw up or make any mistakes rather than working on the core issue that lead you to deprive him of sex with you (his own wife)!

Sorry, I don't mean to be harsh, but depriving your husband from sex and giving him a green pass to seek it else where, and trying to control how things should be done add to that the zero experience on both sides and expect the execution to be without errors and mistakes is not realistic.

HeartbrokenRN:
First, it had to be meaningless, nothing emotional and nothing resembling a relationship.

Even if he did everything right, no errors and no mistakes, trying to control the emotional part is not realistic as well, it's a dangerous game that you are playing! You already deprived him from sex and for men sex is the main emotional connection with there partners and it will only be a matter of time when the right women to show up give him the emotional connection and he will be gone and she will replace you and he will have no control over it!

The solution is to work on you marriage, close that evil door that you opened, and fix the core issues that lead you to deprive him of sex or go your suppurate ways and live your lives.


[This message edited by Kaliber at 11:25 AM, August 1st (Saturday)]

ChamomileTea posted 8/1/2020 11:22 AM

I would love to know why you are labelling him as a WH and a cheater, are you seeing something we are not?

I guess so. Because what I'm seeing is a guy who's focus was getting his nut rather than treating his WIFE with loving kindness. I see a guy who has turned a deaf ear on his partner's pleas for an emotionally closer relationship. And I see a guy who said "hell yeah" when it was obvious he should have said "let's work on this". His vow of fidelity didn't keep his pants on, and I don't see how annoying his wife until he gets a hall pass mitigates that.

HeartbrokenRN posted 8/1/2020 11:47 AM

Listen Kaliber, I came on here and shared my story because I felt broken and sad and needed some guidance and support. I wasnít looking for anyone to tell me that what I did or how I acted was right or wrong. I felt hurt and betrayed and i allowed to have those feelings. In my mind he broke his promise to me and cheated, and he got caught, and he was so careless his son pretty much found out. You seem very intent on trying to tell me how I should or should not feel and itís utterly ridiculous. This is a support site, not a debate site. I did NOT ask anyoneís opinion on whether what he did was infidelity or not (even though in my eyes it was). I was struggling and looking for people to help me get through this horrible time. I donít know why are being so cruel and rude in your responses. If you donít like how I feel about the situation feel free to scroll on past to other posts, clearly you arenít here for support.

HeartbrokenRN posted 8/1/2020 11:49 AM

And thank you Chamomile tea, I think you understand exactly why I feel so betrayed. Itís nice to hear that someone understands my emotions regarding what he did. 😊

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