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Back 10 years after affair

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bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 15:42 PM

I used to post here all the time, as a new WW. I have been reconciled to BH for 10 years, now seperated. Here's whats been happening:

My updated story. Sorry, it's long but interesting...
Ten years ago, I had a short emotional and then physical affair. After the one night I spent with OM, he found out and I did not handle Dday or the subsequent months appropriately. I learned alot here posting in Wayward, and we entered a reconciliation. I was vulnerable to the affair due to his withdrawl from our lives. Please understand that's not an excuse, what I did was wrong, no matter the circumstances. But we both understand I was vulnerable because I kept begging him to be involved , to be with me, to live our life with me, and he kept resisting , isolating and denying.
So... In our reconciliation, I offered him a ' wild card' or 'free pass'. We were onlies, and I had taken that away, and changed it for us and it was something that wieghed on him. I wanted to fix that for him. I know that was flawed thinking, but its what I did. He said he'd never want to do that, that it wouldn't fix anything, that it was crazy, and for years, we left it at that. Until 2 years ago, so like 8 years into R, all Of a sudden there was this opportunity. A friend he used to work with, messages him out of the blue and is now single. I knew she wanted him, he shared everything and I knew. So.. being the still guilty, never self forgiven ( although I claimed to be) WW that I am, I encouraged it. I provoked him into flirting with her for several weeks, ultimately setting up their "one free night ". She was told In advance of that night, exactly what it was and why, and that he absolutely had my blessing. ( hardest night I had ever lived through ). But now , he would feel better!He would surely forgive me now, after my ability to do that for him! Even though, before all this happened, he had told me I was forgiven and we were happy, reconciled... Living our new life.
If all that isnt crazy enough, that's only the beginning. The beginning of the end.
Following that one night that they shared, I declared they should really only continue a friendship if her and I met and were feiends too. She agreed to meet and weirdly, somehow, it turns into a threesome situation. I cannot even explain how. I have never in my life been attracted to another woman, but all lf a sudden this was fun. I really liked who BH was, I liked all the attention and flirting and ' dating'. I didn't ever LOVE the threesome sex, but it was a part of it and it was adventurous and daring and different. I felt like I was this awesome wife who gave her man something noone else would give their man. I always said it wasn't forever , this was just a thing we were doing for a bit.
It grew though, it grew out of control , I got uncomfortable, we had fights regarding boundaries and my emotions. It ended when her life got hectic, by her choice and we went back to being us. If that had been the end, maybe we'd still be ok.
When she csme back after a year, we decided to start it up again. I said at the start that I didnt want it to be as intense as last time, and that I wanted to be able to say so if I didn't want to do it anymore. He readily agreed and we had a gifriend again. Well. It not only was just as intense as the first time , it was much much more so. Why didn't I see that coming. She was a part of everything we did and said, she was everyday, everything. He made very effort he could to make me feel like I was #1, the wife... But it became to much and I couldn't live with it anymore . When it ended, in March.... He decladed a need for time and space and moved upstairs. We've lived like that to now, and he moves out this week.
The two of them have maintained a friendship the whole time. Her and I have not. Tried, a little ... Didn't work. I'm so ridiculously jealous that she gets to talk to him every day and I don't, after everything we've been through. I know that's just my side, he has his reasons. He's tired of ' losing in this marriage' hes tired of my emotional outbursts and he says I never consider his feelings before my own. He's not wrong, in the threesome situation I absolutely did that. I was the one who was scared, insecure, conflicted, jealous and unable. I don't think I did that outside the threesome relationship.
So now, here we are. On the brink of divorce. He says it isn't the breakup of the threesome that's to blame. It's the accumulation of all the resentments and bad stuff through all the years. I believed for a long time it was because I didn't want to be with her anymore. Part of me still does.
Obviously, thats not an all inclusive, highly detailed explanation, but its an outline. Thoughts, questions advice, criticism... All welcome. Thanks for reading.

hikingout posted 8/10/2020 16:07 PM

Welcome back. It sounds like to me your story is one big cautionary tale. I don't mean to be offensive by saying that, but just wow.

It sounds like to me you never healed from being a WW. I can understand how that can happen, but what do you wish you would have done differently in retrospect in terms of working on healing? What do you think you should have hit harder?

Are you prepared the two of them may now become a couple? Are there kids? How are you feeling about the divorce?

I think you still need to address the things you haven't healed because in your next relationship you are going to carry forth shame, regret, a lack of self-worth, and other baggage that could continue to be disruptive patterns for you. I hope you can really take some time to learn what you wished you had early on?

HFSSC posted 8/10/2020 16:34 PM

Bewuzzled, I remember you and your H from before.

I am sorry to hear that y'all are at this place. But I will echo hikingout. I remember (unless I have you confused with someone else) that y'all were still struggling a good bit when you stopped posting. I think this will be a good time for you to go back to the foundation of you and heal you.

Thanksgiving2016 posted 8/10/2020 17:14 PM

I'm sorry. Cut your losses and work on you. Sounds like it was a deal breaker for him and he used you to find his new girlfriend. If it's any consolation this lady sounds pretty screwed up and he's going to wind up in infidelity again soon enough.

bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 17:43 PM

' It sounds like to me your story is one big cautionary tale.'

It is absolutely this, without a doubt.

I wish I'd have stayed longer. I wish I'd have done IC longer. I wish I'd actually forgiven myself and I wish I'd focused more on a long term healing for both of us, instead of the quickest, easiest fix I could see at the time.

Such flawed thinking.

bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 17:45 PM

Bewuzzled, I remember you and your H from before.

thank you, I've always felt understood and supported here, and I'm hoping to again, as I make an attempt to get through this seperation in the best way I can.

ChamomileTea posted 8/10/2020 18:07 PM

He says it isn't the breakup of the threesome that's to blame. It's the accumulation of all the resentments and bad stuff through all the years. I believed for a long time it was because I didn't want to be with her anymore. Part of me still does.

I think you're probably right. If you had continued to allow him to have both you and the OW, I very much doubt he'd be complaining. That said, he might have still made this decision to move out. You'll know for sure if he ends up with her, which I believe is likely.

You've made some really sketchy decisions and I think you know that. But cheating is about CHARACTER. It's about one's core values and their actual deeds being out of alignment. Your H claimed to believe in fidelity, but when you provided him with a way to circumvent that core belief, he did so when the opportunity came around. His core value of fidelity had a "but..." in it. He believed in fidelity, "but... not if the intercourse is out in the open". So, this is no longer about your adultery of ten years ago. It's about his character and about him wanting more/extra but not wanting to let go of that when the time came. He's not significantly different than any other cheater in terms of wayward thinking. He might be doing his cheating out in the open, but his motives are impure and he obviously lied to you when he said it wouldn't be any problem to end the threesome upon your discomfort.

At this point, I think your feelings and your next moves are as valid as any other BW's would be. Get a really good attorney, and make sure he doesn't screw you over in the settlement. If you do consider R at any point, don't be afraid to set REAL BOUNDARIES, just like you would with any other WS. Your WH broke your agreement, and just like any other "open marriage" arrangement, the fidelity is in the agreed upon parameters. He's doing his best to formulate enough weasel words to make it seem like he's not a cheater, but he is. Stand up for yourself and treat him like one.

prissy4lyfe posted 8/10/2020 18:19 PM

I disagree that he used you to find a new girlfriend.
Sounds like he made decisions based in the fact that he thought he was in a fully healed marriage with a fully healed wife.
You encouraged this at every step.

Also, I don't know that she is "screwed up". She was single and entered a relationship with a couple. There is nothing wrong with that.
As a married couple I think you negotiate your boundaries in your marriage..and if that means outside partners that fine.

I think he frustrated because essentially you have been in False R for ten years. You never did the work. You encouraged this relationship (twice) to alleviate your own guilt and when it didn't work you took it out on him.

Hopefully some space and hard work in your part can repair things.

prissy4lyfe posted 8/10/2020 18:21 PM

I completely disagree that this is cheating. This is an open relationship...that OP encouraged and participated in.

Interesting...observations on this thread.

Thanksgiving2016 posted 8/10/2020 18:38 PM

I agree with Chamomile 100 percent.

ChamomileTea posted 8/10/2020 19:12 PM

I completely disagree that this is cheating. This is an open relationship...that OP encouraged and participated in.

The agreement was that the OP could end it at any time if she became uncomfortable with it. But when she did, her WH's response to that was to bitterly complain about her jealousy and then demand separation. So, no... I don't see this as having anything to do with the OP's previous infidelity. He lived with her for eight years after the affair and before taking her up on her offer of a hall pass. He had plenty of time to make changes if he felt she hadn't done her part in marital recovery.

Any other time we have a BS come to the forums whose partner has ignored the agreed upon terms for opening the marriage, they're met with support. The fact that this guy did his dirt right out in the open doesn't mitigate the fact that he ignored the agreement. His thought process is twisted and wayward because his protestations that he's not leaving because the OP broke up the threesome rings FALSE. We're not afraid to throw the bullshit flag in other cases, but because the OP was a WS ten years ago, we're somehow obliged to believe the extraordinary coincidence that the marriage is unrecoverable right when his wife decided she wanted the OW out. Sounds a bit too convenient, doesn't it?

Sorry, but in my estimation, Bewuzzled is a BW just like anyone else who has been cheated in an open marriage scenario.

bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 19:24 PM

I think you're probably right. If you had continued to allow him to have both you and the OW, I very much doubt he'd be complaining. That said, he might have still made this decision to move out. You'll know for sure if he ends up with her, which I believe is likely.

This right here. He wasn't complaining of issues with me before the second go round with her. That's my problem with his why's right now. He told me during this second time that if I ended things because I couldn't control my emotions, that he would have to re evaluate everything. I felt utterly trapped and like if I ended it, he would leave me.

bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 19:29 PM

I disagree that he used you to find a new girlfriend.
Sounds like he made decisions based in the fact that he thought he was in a fully healed marriage with a fully healed wife.
You encouraged this at every step.


Agreed, I don't think he used me to find his next girlfriend either, but I also don't agree with the fact that he feels betrayed by my not understanding and stating my motivations at the start. We did have conversation, we did have boundaries..the relationship grew into something it was never meant to be. It was not a betrayl on my part.
that doesn't change the fact that he feels that way, but I feel differently.

bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 19:32 PM

The fact that this guy did his dirt right out in the open doesn't mitigate the fact that he ignored the agreement. His thought process is twisted and wayward because his protestations that he's not leaving because the OP broke up the threesome rings FALSE. We're not afraid to throw the bullshit flag in other cases, but because the OP was a WS ten years ago, we're somehow obliged to believe the extraordinary coincidence that the marriage is unrecoverable right when his wife decided she wanted the OW out. Sounds a bit too convenient, doesn't it?

I think this is what I needed someone else to understand.

this was all done undercover, none of our friends or family knew anything about this. She was simply a friend. It's been so hard trying to cope with the truth alone. Only my IC knows the details of why the separation is happening.

ChamomileTea posted 8/10/2020 19:50 PM

He told me during this second time that if I ended things because I couldn't control my emotions, that he would have to re evaluate everything.

Which completely puts the lie to you being able to say so if you wanted to end it. So, this wasn't even an agreement, it was a coercion.

I'll tell you honestly, I would treat this like any other cheating scenario. If he wants D, he's undeserving of the kid glove treatment. Get a good attorney, get EVERYTHING you have coming to you in settlement, and tell your key people the truth. That doesn't include judgy types, obviously. Who needs all that noise. But I think in a few months time, it's going to become obvious that he left you for the OW. He'll be putting lots of spin on it based on what you've posted here in order to control the narrative. You don't have to lie still for that.

I'm sorry for what happened to you. I think you got caught up in trying to make up for the "first and only" factor. But that doesn't mean you're any less worthy of support as any other BW here. Spend some time reading other BW threads and see if some of that advice fits you.

waitedwaytoolong posted 8/10/2020 19:57 PM

Wow, this took an unexpected turn. In my post you first made in Divorce I commented on the similarities of our stories. Iím going to post it below

This sounds very close to my story. Wife had a short, but brutal affair.
We stayed together for 5 years but it never felt right to me. My gut on DDay was to GTFO, but I wanted to keep my family intact. I stayed, but kind of went through the motions. Sex was different as I couldnít get what they did out of my head. I had no compelling feeling that I wanted to spend time with her. Basically our marriage was a shell of what it was. At least from my perspective. Not that there were not plenty of good times too, but they were not enough to overcome the flatness I felt most of the time

She knew things were not great, but her perspective was it was good enough, and if more time passed she was convinced it could be great again. She did everything she could, super remorseful, and started to plan a 30th anniversary trip. She had great intentions, but I just had an epiphany that I would rather go play golf with my friends, than watch a sunset with her. She was shocked when after she laid out the trip, I responded with I think we should divorce.

He doesnít want to hold me hostage anymore
Im going to take this as how I felt. I knew deep down that even though I loved her, I was done. There was nothing she could do. In reality there was nothing she could do the second she slept with him the second time (I think I could have forgiven a one time thing.) I hated the way I treated her, which would best be called cordial. You should not treat someone you love cordially. I too was full of resentment

Instead of looking at this as a failure, maybe try to step into his shoes and realize he was there for your kids growing up. He sacrificed great years for you and the family. He could have left day one.

My EX and our kids still hold out hope we will get back together. I guess you can never say never, but my guts got twisted by her affair, got twisted again when I went through a divorce and had to see her pain, Iím just not willing to twist my guts again by risking marrying her again. Not because I think she is a danger, but I am. I could marry her and quickly realize nothing in our situation changed. Who needs to do that?

That isnít to say it doesnít happen. Iím interested in you going into more depth. Bottom line a 25 year relationship is something to celebrate. Especially as it doesnít seem to be ending with a lot of fireworks. Hopefully you can stay as good co parents, and maybe even have some kind of relationship

Itís striking that my story could have also taken the same turn as yours. We were not one and onlies but we had been faithful to each other for 25 years. I felt that I had been robbed of a sexual experience with someone younger and new like she got to have. She was terrified that I would cheat and she offered to approach a much younger friend from the gym that would do for me what your husband got the first time. I felt like she was throwing me a bone, and was going to try to say things were evened out, when they really werenít close. I turned it down. Iím glad I did.

It sounds to me that this wasnít cheating. You not only offered the hall pass, but were instrumental in making it happen. You in essence opened up the marriage which has no appeal to me, but others love it. Sounds like you did for a time. I just canít for the life of me figure out why. The way you describe things they were going really well. Sounds like you have regrets about doing it.

Itís awfully hard to put the Genie back in the bottle. Again, I did have that itch that needed to be scratched too. I wanted fun sex with someone else, but I separated to do it, and moved 1000 miles away. The thing is like your BS, I didnít want to stop. Going back exclusively to her at the time wasnít in the cards.

In my first post I expressed that I thought he just might have been done from the beginning. Iím not sure of that now. If you hadnít opened things up, where do you think you would be now? Was he done and this provides the out, or would things have been fine if you stayed the course. This has to weigh heavily on you.

Do you think that if you hadnít sanctioned it, he would have gone behind your back anyway? Are they sleeping together now?

I still stand behind what I said about trying to give him a break. He was devastated by the worse thing that can happen in a marriage. (Exception being the death of a child) and he stayed. You made a calculation that didnít turn out so well. But on the other hand, it sounds like for a time this was a fun experience for you.

My guess is what he has with her wonít last. The foundation of the relationship is to fragile. Maybe in time things can work out for you.

I do feel badly for you as you seem to want this marriage very much. What you did, like my WS has consequences. Itís too bad this ball started to roll with the affair, and careened out of control.

Like I did say in the first post. A 25 year marriage is a good run.

If you could write the script from here, what would it be?

bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 20:00 PM

But I think in a few months time, it's going to become obvious that he left you for the OW. He'll be putting lots of spin on it based on what you've posted here in order to control the narrative. You don't have to lie still for that.

This is it right here. Even knowing it was hurting me that he continued talking to her (even just as friends) while separating from me, he continued. He says not being able to maintain that friendship with her is yet another thing he would lose due to the marriage. I don't want to feel like I just take from him, so I find a way to be ok with it. I allow it to be my fault that we're not ok, and my fault that I didn't find a way to be happy in that relationship. It's all my fault he stopped talking to me and continues with her. She shouldn't be punished for my mistakes, that what he says...flat out.
He tells me I'm a hypocrite because I had feelings about him going to hang out with her ( in a group friend setting) but I will see my best friend...a woman and fried of the marriage..I just can't anymore. It's all too much.

Spend some time reading other BW threads and see if some of that advice fits you.

Is it ok for me to be there? I don't feel cheated on, but I do feel betrayed by BH over the breakup. Do I belong there?

[This message edited by bewuzzled at 8:00 PM, August 10th (Monday)]

HFSSC posted 8/10/2020 20:12 PM

As I recall, Stuck had his issues as well. That's as much as I'll say about that.

This is about you. You can't control him. Can't fix him. All you can do is work on you. Your feelings are valid, IMO, whatever they are. If you feel betrayed, you feel betrayed. You have the right to explore and process that. And post where you find the most help. I'm a mad hatter (Hat Trick, actually) but I identify most strongly as a BS. I've known other MH here who are .let comfortable in Wayward. I don't think it matters so much where you post as that you post.

Again, I'm so sorry you find yourself back here.

bewuzzled posted 8/10/2020 20:13 PM

I turned it down. Iím glad I did.

I'm glad you did too. Probably would have not turned out well.


It sounds to me that this wasnít cheating. You not only offered the hall pass, but were instrumental in making it happen. You in essence opened up the marriage which has no appeal to me, but others love it. Sounds like you did for a time. I just canít for the life of me figure out why. The way you describe things they were going really well. Sounds like you have regrets about doing it.

I absolutely regret it now. I think it was a life altering, marriage ending mistake. Much like an affair can be. I was absolutely instrumental and on board. I was having fun with it in a certain way, but when it started to feel like I had to buy time with him, or negotiate for things I wanted around what she wanted or what he felt she needed or deserved...it wasn't fun anymore. And he couldn't see it. I tried for months to tell him I wasn't ok, but he kept saying I wasn't being his partner and that all I did was bring him problems to solve and my emotions to soothe.

In my first post I expressed that I thought he just might have been done from the beginning. Iím not sure of that now. If you hadnít opened things up, where do you think you would be now? Was he done and this provides the out, or would things have been fine if you stayed the course

If I hadn't opened it up, agreed to it, encouraged it...he would not have done it. I was the driving force behind their night together. I was the rule maker/ one they both tiptoed around during the threesome. Niether of them ever crossed me or my stated boundaries outside of 1 time, which BH came and confessed to.

I do feel badly for you as you seem to want this marriage very much. What you did, like my WS has consequences. Itís too bad this ball started to roll with the affair, and careened out of control.

Yes. I love that man, I still want to be with him at this point. But it's completely out of control, which is why I would never recommend this to any other couple. It is hard under good circumstances. In ours, it was stupid.

ChamomileTea posted 8/10/2020 20:24 PM

Is it ok for me to be there? I don't feel cheated on, but I do feel betrayed by BH over the breakup. Do I belong there?

As a former WS, you can't post in JFO, but you can read there. And you can post everywhere else but there.

And yes... I think you were indeed cheated. One can't say "we'll stop if you get uncomfortable" out of one side of his mouth and "you can't end it because of your emotionalism" out of the other. There's a LIE in there. He's a WS... and a damned sneaky one if you ask me.

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