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crazyblindsided posted 8/9/2020 13:33 PM

So during her affair, my STBXWW for some reason thought it might be beneficial as part of her gaslighting of me to recruit a friend of hers into the idea I had unfounded paranoia and was the stereotypical "jealous husband."

Ugh I think the gaslighting is the worst. It does far more damage than the A to discover how manipulative they can be. When I first discovered the A he only admitted to kissing and tried to convince me that I was overreacting. He even involved his business partner who also knew of the A (she was their employee at the time) to say that it was all that happened and agreed I was overreacting.

I think itís horrible when a WS actively gaslights the BS while witnessing their struggle to understand what is happening. Iíll never forget it or forgive it. Thatís pretty evil.

[This message edited by crazyblindsided at 1:34 PM, August 9th (Sunday)]

WornDown posted 8/9/2020 14:26 PM

Thumos -

When you're done, you're done. No need to justify why you are choosing divorce. To any one.

I wouldn't try to do this all by yourself, at least in the beginning.

Sit down with your lawyer and talk about what is REASONABLE in your jurisdiction. What kind of alimony do you/WW have to pay her/you? What would child support look like? What does asset division look like in your jurisdiction (some places it's 50/50, some it's "what's equitable." (much looser than 50/50).

Figure out what is reasonable and what you can live with, have your attorney draw up the papers, and THEN present your offer to your STBXW. Let her look them over and consult her own attorney if she wants.

It's at this stage you'll learn if this is going to be cordial or acrimonious. She either agree/come back with reasonable requests...or she'll demand the moon and the stars.

If she's reasonable, you two can hash out the details and then have the attorney(s) draw up the paperwork.

There's so much complexity in divorces that trying to go it alone can be a recipe for disaster, especially when the other party isn't reasonable. So spend the penny to save the pound.

The joke is true: Why do divorce attorneys cost so much? Because they are worth every penny.

Good luck.

(Note: I said reasonable many times. Seems like you have a good level of expectations, but some people think that since the WS cheated they should get nothing...not reasonable (to the law).

Thumos posted 8/9/2020 17:46 PM

I do think she should be willing to waive alimony and that can be done in my state. Otherwise child support is pretty much dictated by a calculator and nights spent with each parent.

I started making a very detailed practical to do list today of all the things I need to do and information and paperwork to gather for an attorney, working on a detailed what to expect budget for when Iím divorced, looking at practical rental properties in the area and so on.

A lot of expenses coming up - hope I can afford it! Practically speaking, given everything we need to do, getting the house ready to sell and so on, itís difficult to see how this gets done until in the new year. By that I mean done done, not that I canít be taking tangible next steps now.

We had a difficult convo last night - she was telling me she didnít want to do it, a lot of crying on her part and I just made clear once again Iím detaching and done.

Does anyone have any insight as to why her tears didnít affect me? I gave her a hug and comforted her ó but I didnít feel sad.
And I just continued to feel resolved and firm.

[This message edited by Thumos at 9:38 PM, August 9th (Sunday)]

Newlifeisgreat posted 8/9/2020 18:11 PM

Because you have detached enough and you are realizing that it is and probably always was inevitable, plus, this is completely her fault!

Congratulations on finally stop being the victim and taking control of your life. This route is better for your kids

Stay strong, and continue moving into your better future

[This message edited by Newlifeisgreat at 6:13 PM, August 9th (Sunday)]

siracha posted 8/9/2020 19:23 PM

Tears are often a manipulation tactic I think you just cant give her the benefit of the doubt and for good reason .From my reading you were willing to forgive the adultery but not the pathological lying . After years of that now you cant see any of her emotions as genuine just self serving .

KingofNothing posted 8/9/2020 21:42 PM

Does anyone have any insight as to why her tears didnít affect me? I have her a hug and comforted her but I didnít feel sad.
And I just continued to feel resolved and firm.

I think you know. I have observed your actions, reactions, theories and even some dialogue you've had with her. You didn't do this lightly, or out of revenge. You did it because you had thought and thought and thought about it, and pondered what your life would be like in the future with or theoretically without her. You gave it every effort it deserved, and at the end of the day, you still were unhappy at her actions and behavior subsequent to the affair. You cannot be accused of being knee-jerk and reactionary, or uncaring and aloof, even. You put your heart and soul into this.

I recall asking you in your other long thread.. Thumos, is this the hill you want to die on here? (Or words to that effect). Basically, me asking you if finding out additional information about additional sex acts was so important to you that it would either jeopardize what's left of your relationship with her or propel you into a decision one way or the other. I thought you had all you needed to make a decision one way or the other, myself.. but I don't see it that way now. I think your decision was based on four years of intense thought, research into the psychology of cheaters, and a good faith effort. At the end of that time, it really wasn't worth continuing like it was-- essentially sweeping whatever was left to find out under the rug. I could sense that.

That doesn't make you aloof, or unloving or certainly a bad husband. I think you just arrived at a decision point in your own time, and once it was made, there was no going back. You put four years of effort in, and you don't have anything to feel bad about here.

We had a difficult convo last night - she was telling me she didnít want to do it, a lot of crying on her part and I just made clear once again Iím detaching and done.

Does she acknowledge your unhappiness and her own role in causing that? Doesn't she think you deserve to be happy in your own right?

[This message edited by KingofNothing at 9:46 PM, August 9th (Sunday)]

JanaGreen posted 8/10/2020 00:35 AM

Does anyone have any insight as to why her tears didnít affect me?

I don't know if your wife is as cruel as my ex, but he told me once, over the phone when we were separated, that he had had an appointment with a divorce lawyer for a consult but he had started crying in the parking lot and didn't go in.

And I remember thinking - what is it you want from me here? Sympathy? Pity? I distinctly remember several occasions crying alone and uncomforted on the couch over some fresh betrayal he had dealt while he slept like a baby in our king-sized bed, or on one particularly fun night, him standing over me sneering and mocking me for being "dramatic" while I was crying, shaking, and unable to speak after finding messages to yet another new woman. Were his couple of crocodile tears supposed to mean something to me at that point, after I'd climbed out of the pit that he had thrown me into? Naw. I was done with all that bullshit and you are too. You've stopped the drama dance.

[This message edited by JanaGreen at 12:37 AM, August 10th (Monday)]

ashesofkali posted 8/10/2020 00:37 AM

crazyblindsided is spot-on with this comment:

Ugh I think the gaslighting is the worst. It does far more damage than the A to discover how manipulative they can be. When I first discovered the A he only admitted to kissing and tried to convince me that I was overreacting. He even involved his business partner who also knew of the A (she was their employee at the time) to say that it was all that happened and agreed I was overreacting.

I think itís horrible when a WS actively gaslights the BS while witnessing their struggle to understand what is happening. Iíll never forget it or forgive it. Thatís pretty evil.


I agree. That variety of gaslighting is just pure evil. As if destroying the BS wasn't enough, the WS then goes on to wreck the BS's support system and make it impossible for the BS to seek help.

Jorge posted 8/10/2020 01:40 AM

Does anyone have any insight as to why her tears didnít affect me? I gave her a hug and comforted her ó but I didnít feel sad.
And I just continued to feel resolved and firm.

As football players say, you left it all on the field. Their is nothing else you can give that would create a different outcome. With this comes peace. Your wife isn't at peace. She's still at war with herself in a sense, as indicative of her coming clean with her friend over lunch recently, 4 years after the fact. It's a microcosm of the affair and post affair narrative, where your needs deferred to her reputation.

Only truth can bring peace from within. She still struggles with this while you have come to terms with the fact that it's not in her to live in truth regardless of the potential benefit. Your detachment is not from being uncaring, but from caring and accepting who she is, even though painful. It's the old adage, 'it is what it is". This statement has an acceptance about it that transcends emotion, imo.

keptmyword posted 8/10/2020 02:04 AM

I understand how the law regards adultery now (as in not giving it much weight), but I'd like for her to demonstrate true remorse by waiving it in any case.

I wouldnít count on this happening.

She will end up with her own attorney and that attorney is going to do everything he can to convince her that she is absolutely, positively entitled to as much possible alimony as she can get.

The attorney is also going to convince her that her adultery is totally irrelevant to the entitlement of alimony and also convince her that you, her ďjilted exĒ, are going to attempt to use the adultery as leverage to ďguiltĒ her into not taking as much as she may be entitled to and not to fall for it.

Divorce attorneys donít ďwinĒ cases via guilty or not guilty verdicts like criminal trial attorneys.

They ďwinĒ by virtue of getting their clients as much as they legally can in terms of child support, child custody, assets, retirement funds, and alimony.

They also ďwinĒ by making the divorce go on and on and on.

They make money by billing for just about every sort of interaction with them that you can think of.

A divorce that becomes acrimonious is almost always going to drag on for a much longer time, and thus, they will be able to bill for more.

This is not every divorce case but is more typical so Iím saying this to you so you will be prepared in case your hopefully peaceful and cooperative divorce goes south.

My hopes for a smooth and quick divorce that ends heavily in your favor.

Tigersrule77 posted 8/10/2020 15:55 PM

Does anyone have any insight as to why her tears didnít affect me? I gave her a hug and comforted her ó but I didnít feel sad.
And I just continued to feel resolved and firm.

As others said, you have detached. You have made a decision on how to proceed. You have accepted the negatives of this, while focusing on the positives. For many (including me) once the decision to D is made and you've accepted it, there is a release of a lot of negative energy. You no longer have to worry about if your WW is lying, if she is remorseful, etc. None of that matters anymore. That struggle is over. D is a different type of struggle. It's not always easy either.

she was telling me she didnít want to do it

It's unfortunate that she hasn't accepted it yet. You didn't want her A either, but it happened. Just as you couldn't force her to be faithful, she can't force you to stay in the M.

Thumos posted 8/10/2020 16:54 PM

They also ďwinĒ by making the divorce go on and on and on.

They make money by billing for just about every sort of interaction with them that you can think of.

A divorce that becomes acrimonious is almost always going to drag on for a much longer time, and thus, they will be able to bill for more.

This is not every divorce case but is more typical so Iím saying this to you so you will be prepared in case your hopefully peaceful and cooperative divorce goes south.

My hopes for a smooth and quick divorce that ends heavily in your favor.

I know several attys and also judges and this is precisely why I want to avoid retaining attys. I will go for a consult with one, but I'm loathe to get them involved if we can avoid it. So far so good.

Right now, the focus is on budgeting out the reality of what a divorce would look like for both of us, can we afford the expenses related to our daughter's college and my son's school and maintain two households etc. It's just practical stuff.

This is why I've been focused on paying down debt, getting our house ready to sell (it's in good shape, but there's still plenty to do) and why I'd asked earlier in this thread about a therapeutic separation as a buffer leading up to divorce.

Thumos posted 8/10/2020 16:55 PM

It's unfortunate that she hasn't accepted it yet. You didn't want her A either, but it happened. Just as you couldn't force her to be faithful, she can't force you to stay in the M.

No she can't and if this becomes a bigger issue, it will just push me to accelerate things. I want out.

It is unfortunate that she isn't accepting it right now. I'm hoping that as we work together I can get her to a point of acceptance.

Tigersrule77 posted 8/11/2020 08:57 AM

I know several attys and also judges and this is precisely why I want to avoid retaining attys.

I agree with you, which is why you need to find the right kind of attorney. I was recommended to one by a friend, and he was very good. He reviewed the information I provided, created the documents for me, advised me as necessary and for the most part, stood back and waited for me to ask for help. My XWW and I were able to settle on CS, she waived alimony, and we made an agreement on the equity of the house (which wasn't very much).

I would recommend you try to find someone like that, just to assist you essentially. He did not run up fees and total, including court hearings, I think I paid less than $5K. It was money well spent.

LifeDestroyer posted 8/11/2020 09:44 AM

When you told her that you wanted this to be an amicable divorce, did she agree? Did you both agree to going the mediator route?

N was easily able to find a local company who charges very little, compared to most divorces. I think it was about $300 to file the paperwork and then some extra fees, but definitely less than a $1,000. We both discussed what holidays/child support/insurance for child/time/assets would look like. Here you have to take a 4 hour course on helping children through divorce and then we wait for the judge to grant his petition.

She won't accept the divorce for awhile, probably not until she has moved out and no longer sees you. Then there's nothing else but to accept that the divorce is happening. While you get your house ready to sell, can you or she afford to rent an apartment in the meantime?

JanaGreen posted 8/11/2020 09:54 AM

I'm looking at my attorney's website right now. I'm on talk-to-text so I'm just going to read what it says:

While we are always sensitive to your rights as a parent, as family lawyers we believe the true measure of success lies in the well-being of your children. As we help evaluate your options, we provide actionable feedback regarding [STATE]law and how it will impact your children so that they are in the best position to prosper once your case is resolved.

I know those sound like fluffy words, but I really felt like my attorney was focused on keeping things amicable and doing what was best for the children, which was my goal, and which my ex generally did go along with. So I guess my point is not all attorneys want to rack up fees and make things into World War 3. You just have to be careful who you go with. I think my ex's attorney would have been very happy to have World War 3, but my lawyer was not about that and she was also completely unintimidated by his lawyer.

Thumos posted 8/11/2020 11:09 AM

When you told her that you wanted this to be an amicable divorce, did she agree? Did you both agree to going the mediator route?
N was easily able to find a local company who charges very little, compared to most divorces. I think it was about $300 to file the paperwork and then some extra fees, but definitely less than a $1,000. We both discussed what holidays/child support/insurance for child/time/assets would look like. Here you have to take a 4 hour course on helping children through divorce and then we wait for the judge to grant his petition.

She won't accept the divorce for awhile, probably not until she has moved out and no longer sees you. Then there's nothing else but to accept that the divorce is happening. While you get your house ready to sell, can you or she afford to rent an apartment in the meantime?

She seems to have accepted the amicable part and the collaborative part, because I'm being really kind about it and I keep emphasizing the need for us to remain on friendly terms for the sake of our kids.

She's very sad at least insofar as I can trust outward signs as an indication of her interior life (I don't trust this like I used to unfortunately). As I've noted in the last year of posts in the reconciliation section of SI she does have generalized anxiety disorder. So she's struggling with that now.

Our conversations are going well. She is not accepting divorce and doesn't want it, but that's not the same as fighting it or turning nasty. She's pretty passive about the whole thing so it's clear I'm going to have to do most of the heavy lifting on the nuts and bolts of carrying out the divorce.

I had another terrible trigger last night and we talked about it and I think it is sinking in for her that unless I get out of the situation this is only to get worse for me -- and I need peace.

Really the biggest thing we need to address very soon is talking to our son about his situation with his friend (the OM's son). This is the first week of school for my son, so I'm not sure I want to spring that on him as he's adjusting to a new school and new friend group the first week.

The rental of an apartment is part of what complicates this. We have a lot of expenses, esp with older child entering college. I would like to do that sooner rather than later, perhaps in October, because now that I've made a decision I'm feeling increasingly antsy about it.

I've discussed the potential of doing a therapeutic separation that would allow me to move out earlier while we work on the fine tune aspects of the divorce. Not sure we can really afford it, so I'm really digging through our budget this week.

We're doing well financially but live in a house that is big (bigger than we need) with a nice swimming pool, etc. Plenty of expenses there as well.

It's in great shape but there are some practical things that need to be carried out to be make it ready to sell.

I think the entire process is likely to take the better part of half a year or more.

Thanks for the advice about how you and N did it - I talked with N about it and he was helpful on the details. That sounds like a really good approach that saves time and money and doens't get into the trap of billable hours and lawyering up.

[This message edited by Thumos at 11:11 AM, August 11th (Tuesday)]

Thumos posted 8/11/2020 11:44 AM

I know those sound like fluffy words, but I really felt like my attorney was focused on keeping things amicable and doing what was best for the children, which was my goal, and which my ex generally did go along with. So I guess my point is not all attorneys want to rack up fees and make things into World War 3. You just have to be careful who you go with. I think my ex's attorney would have been very happy to have World War 3, but my lawyer was not about that and she was also completely unintimidated by his lawyer.

Good advice, Jana. I'm a little overwhelmed by the to-do list I have in front of me and the checklists I've put together. I'm going to have to do all the heavy lifting on this, and my WW is clearly going to be pretty passive about it at least so far. I feel more empowered than I have in a long time, but it's still a lot. What's motivating me is just getting free and clear.

Thumos posted 8/11/2020 11:47 AM

The attorney is also going to convince her that her adultery is totally irrelevant to the entitlement of alimony and also convince her that you, her ďjilted exĒ, are going to attempt to use the adultery as leverage to ďguiltĒ her into not taking as much as she may be entitled to and not to fall for it.

I'm trying to avoid us having separate attorneys, or perhaps attorneys at all. LifeDestroyer and N laid out a pathway that accomplished the entire thing for less than $500, and was as amicable as these things can probably be.

JanaGreen posted 8/11/2020 22:38 PM

I'm a little overwhelmed by the to-do list I have in front of me and the checklists I've put together. I'm going to have to do all the heavy lifting on this, and my WW is clearly going to be pretty passive about it at least so far. I feel more empowered than I have in a long time, but it's still a lot.

My brother divorced shortly before I did, and he volunteered to go to the lawyer with me. He took notes and helped me keep track of the things I needed to do. It was very helpful. If there are things you can delegate to family or friends, I bet they would be eager to help. It IS overwhelming but one bite at a time and eventually you'll eat the elephant.

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