Return to Forum List

Return to Reconciliation

SurvivingInfidelity.com® > Reconciliation

You are not logged in. Login here or register.

It's been about 4 months. It's going "well".

Pages: 1 · 2

particle posted 9/16/2020 01:02 AM

I posted in the just found out forum 4 months ago, shared my story. I left for a while and now it's closed, so I assume I am fit for this forum section now.

Abridged:

Wife of 20 years had a 18 month affair, not the entire time was sexual. The person was someone I know but not at all close and very young. (she lost a best friend of 21 years over this so you can guess...)

I did not find out all the details until 2 months past DD. I now understand why she did not share initially (length of time and person involved) and I understand why she told me more lies about the entire situation. She was also so embarrassed or whatever that he and she actually made it look like it was someone else (a made up person) while they were involved, they didn't get sloppy until about one year in. I guess just in case. So while I did find out a lot of details at the start I also felt like a complete fool twice.

Cut to today, it's been 4 months of her being the perfect wife. I almost threw her out 2 months ago when I found out everything, but I stopped. When I get upset, she's there to talk and comfort and express her apologies. When I do not want to be around her, she stays away and doesn't press. When I want to sleep alone, she sleeps on the couch and doesn't hold any grudge. Just waits for me to be ok.

We are (except for my episodes) back to our pre wedding days in all ways. Talking, planning, living, emotionally and physically, it's all "perfect". We go everywhere together, we go to bed and sleep together, even if one of us stays up. We greet each other at the door with long hugs and kisses. We are "back".

She is exceedingly remorseful, that's clear. I can hear her vomiting in the bathroom after I express my hurt
and we cry sometimes. I know her, she's lost a few very close relatives and she's never been that upset. She says she's upset over what she has done to me and I believe her.

I have access to and can open and see anything she is doing. There are trackers on her phone and in her car. There is even a voice recorder in the car. She knows about the tracker in her phone, that is all. There has not been a single instance of anything out of the ordinary or any activity not expected. I also have full access to the credit cards and bank statements, she cannot spend a dime without me knowing. (she previously handled much of that). All of our accounts, physical, online etc are all entered into our logbook that I keep for logins and passwords, she knows I have access to everything if I want it. She gladly does this, does not seem to resent any of it at all and actively engages in this new practice.

We are moving to a different state soon, 1000's of miles away (not related to this situation). So, no contact, nothing that she could hide without a lot of trouble.

But "contact" is not my concern, it's not something I care about anymore. At first it was, but not anymore. I still check of course but it's not a priority.

My concern now is my personal anxiety and feeling unworthy. It hits me at random times of the day, sometimes I can go 3-4 days feeling great, feeling happy and then BOOM, I feel worthless and terrible. Mind movies, text conversations, photos, all come rushing in. I stay up sometimes 36+ hours and sometimes sleep 12-14 hours in a day (all random, not tied together), which is unusual as I have a pattern and have never really slept for more than 5 at a time.

I love her, I know this. It hurts to see her upset with herself, hate herself, even though she "deserves" it. When she cries, I feel bad but at the same time... well? But I also can't shake the duality of both me feeling unworthy and feeling she is unworthy of me. I mean, I am the same guy, I haven't changed, how can she love me this much again all of a sudden after so much time? And how can I, with any self respect, accept her again as my partner in life?

Then there is the "getting away with it" aspect, aside from losing her best friend, no one knows. The in laws sent us a card for our recent anniversary that expressed how proud they were of our perfect marriage how great we were together and what an example we were... you can imagine how I felt about that.

I don't really have anyone to tell, no family and my friends are all casual due to starting and running a business for so long. So she basically gets to be the perfect wife in a perfect marriage and I am the only one who's directly affected. It doesn't seem fair. (is that selfish?) I don't want the world to know, but at the same time... I was seriously wronged here.

I guess my question is... I assume these feelings are normal but how long do these feelings last in a relationship that ends up working out? I mean, if we are still together in 3 years am I still going to wake up in a panic, or look at her funny from time to time?

Sofarsogood posted 9/16/2020 07:00 AM

Maybe some individual counseling would be in order for you two. As for her not suffering consequences, maybe not to other people, but it sounds like remorse due to some of the physical reactions she has when she realizes how much she has hurt you. Time does heal, and it sounds like there's a lot of positive things happening in your relationship as well.Hoping for the best outcome for you!

Buster123 posted 9/16/2020 09:09 AM

Then there is the "getting away with it" aspect, aside from losing her best friend, no one knows. The in laws sent us a card for our recent anniversary that expressed how proud they were of our perfect marriage how great we were together and what an example we were... you can imagine how I felt about that.
I would at least have her call her parents in front of you and set the record straight, this was a huge betrayal for a long time with probably THOUSANDS of lies in the mix, far from the "perfect M", by allowing her parents to think that, it's lying by omission and not being honest, honesty is paramount when it comes to recovery, don't wait for the next anniversary or birthday cared to arrive, after the confession to her parents the next anniversary card from them will probably be worded in a different way.

Thumos posted 9/16/2020 10:03 AM

Youíre only four months in. Thereís a lot more ahead. I would recommend you get yourself to a betrayal trauma specialist for some IC and see if that counselor has a partner that your WW can see for herself in a sort of tandem.

Cut to today, it's been 4 months of her being the perfect wife.

You can read my very long thread here in reconciliation if you want. Itís on page 3 or 4 ďstuck in anger/plain of lethal flatnessĒ

I donít want to scare you or discourage you but just to gently warn you: the waves of anger and sadness and crippling feelings of low self worth and anxiety have only just begun. They will go on for years, especially as you remain with the very fountainhead of your pain.

Aside from not being willing to do some basic things I asked, my WW has otherwise been a sort of model Stepford wife for four years since DDAY. While her affair was not 18 mos (it was 3 mos) she brought the AP into our home for sex.

All I can tell you is that at the end of the day all of the many things she has tried to do in the aftermath (and I admit itís a lot) have not been enough for me, and the affair and aftermath are a dealbreaker.

I asked her for a divorce last month and now Iím working out the details.

[This message edited by Thumos at 10:05 AM, September 16th (Wednesday)]

Stinger posted 9/16/2020 10:13 AM

Yeah, I could never do it, reconcile, for the exact same reasons you cited, especially the feeling of betraying myself and he getting away with it.

Normally, I am very forgiving, not a grudge holder. But this type of assault is just too much for me.

You are only 4 months in. Maybe leave open the option of divorce, consider it. It helped me a lot to get out.

Thumos posted 9/16/2020 10:41 AM

really it's not so much holding a grudge as you realize this just isn't going away. You're not holding on to it, it's holding on to you.

I travel for work a bit (in fact my WW brought the AP over for sex when I was out of town). These aren't extended trips, more on the order of 3-4 days once a month or so. Much less since the pandemic obviously.

However, an interesting thing began happening on the trips over the past four years: I felt great. I felt lighter, liberated, at ease. My natural charm and ability to enjoy people came back. I had a spring in my step. I realized that each time I stepped out of the tomb of my house (which I used to love) and got on an airplane, I felt fantastic.

This was among many epiphanies I had. I started saying to myself: "you're not obligated to shackle yourself to the source of your pain."

I woke up one morning with this phrase in my head and started ruminating on it. I began writing it here repeatedly to people who were struggling bc I felt it cut through a lot of noise.

Then more recently I connected that phrase to Plato's analogy of the cave, in which the denizens of the cave remain unwittingly but willingly shackled watching shadows cast by the real light outside of the cave.

A false heart attack scare in the late winter/early spring was a catalyst for truly waking me up and making me think hard about my future. There is no doubt that "reconciliation" was a primary cause behind this heart attack scare.

Finally, the sardonic phrase "the beatings will continue until the morale improves" popped into my head one morning this summer and made me smile, as it always does.

Many other things happened, but my thoughts began to turn more and more toward divorce. As painful as it will be for my kids, it will be far less painful for me than remaining in "reconciliation."

Now, caveat here: I'm not actually divorced yet, so I can sort of pop off on this internet forum talking about how much better I think it will be. We'll see how the reality actually comports with this. I will say there's a great "fear vs. reality" thread in the D/S section, and it seems it's almost NEVER as bad as people think it will be, never as painful, and usually pretty damn good.

Just my two cents.

[This message edited by Thumos at 10:43 AM, September 16th (Wednesday)]

Oldwounds posted 9/16/2020 11:13 AM

It doesn't seem fair. (is that selfish?)

No, it's not selfish at all.

Infidelity is as unjust as and unfair as it gets.

Even in a 'good' R, there isn't any way for your wife to balance the scales.

I guess my question is... I assume these feelings are normal but how long do these feelings last in a relationship that ends up working out? I mean, if we are still together in 3 years am I still going to wake up in a panic, or look at her funny from time to time?

Actually, at four months in, you are ahead of where I was. For me, at four months, I was still in shock. I didn't know which way was up.

How long do these feelings last?

It depends on the work done by you and yours.

Infidelity behavior is very predictable but our recovery is very individual.

I'm in year five and don't wake up in a panic anymore and I don't look at my wife funny from time to time. I also don't ignore how we got here.

For me, it took almost a full two years to recognize that none of my wife's shitty choices were a reflection of me. It wasn't me she demeaned, it was herself.

But it's totally normal to feel what you feel now. While we can't cause our spouses to cheat, we should take it as the affront it is.

I think we only lose value if we ALLOW the shitty behavior toward us to continue.

If we stand up for ourselves, set the boundaries where we need them to be -- and most important -- the WS owns their choices and works on their issues, then R has a chance to become the relationship you need it to be.

It may be too early to make any of these determinations.

Once you begin to value yourself again, fully -- however long it takes you to get there, that's when you can better decide what you need from life going forward. Regardless of the path you take.

Thumos posted 9/16/2020 11:25 AM

For me, it took almost a full two years to recognize that none of my wife's shitty choices were a reflection of me. It wasn't me she demeaned, it was herself.

Me too. Actually a little longer for me.

And four months in I was a complete zombie basket case. I felt like I was walking around constantly in the movie "Inception" just waiting for walls to shift and for street architecture to explode around me and turn into a tesseract.

I'm only slightly kidding there, too. The sense of unreality pervaded my thoughts for a long time.

ChamomileTea posted 9/16/2020 12:43 PM

Let me preface this by saying that you're only four months in. Typical healing from this kind of intimate betrayal is two to five YEARS, and actually, I found the second year a bit harder because by then, the limerence of HB begins to fade and depression can settle in. The grieving process is very much akin to grieving a death, almost like your spouse had died. The person you knew is gone, at least in terms of how your brain recognized her. Now there's this new person, still the same but different too. It's weird and hard to describe, but the Five Stages of Grief demand their due... denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. They don't always come in order and they repeat themselves over and over until finally some stage of acceptance will stick.

In terms of the relationship, you'll most likely find yourself back on the fence at odd times, wondering what your life might be like if you just pulled the plug on the marriage. Ride that out. Give it its due. You CAN still change your mind, and there's FREEDOM in knowing that. It's important that you take ownership of the space you choose to live in. Whether that be R or D, or simply "trying" to accomplish one or the other, you can let go of that horrible sense of victimization by realizing that right now... YOU have agency. You are in charge of your choices. You've planted your feet where you want to be (at least for the moment) and that choice was a CONSCIOUS one. When you own it, you feel your freedom.

My concern now is my personal anxiety and feeling unworthy. It hits me at random times of the day, sometimes I can go 3-4 days feeling great, feeling happy and then BOOM, I feel worthless and terrible. Mind movies, text conversations, photos, all come rushing in. I stay up sometimes 36+ hours and sometimes sleep 12-14 hours in a day (all random, not tied together), which is unusual as I have a pattern and have never really slept for more than 5 at a time.

Nothing you did (or didn't do) could cause your WW to cheat on you. This truth MUST be accepted. A cheater cheats because she has a defect in character, a hole where her stated values don't align with her actual deeds. Not everyone can throw their values aside and say "yes" to that kind of perfidy. And if I'm reading right and drawing the correct conclusion, what she did wouldn't even have occurred to most people. That's on her. It has nothing whatsoever to do with you. Part of a healthy reconciliation is allowing your WS to take full ownership of their transgressions. They can't fix what they won't accept, right? Makes sense?

So why are YOU internalizing something you had no control over? You didn't do it. You didn't cause it. It was ALREADY there, always lurking, because the beliefs she thought she had in her core values were weak and permeable. You have no influence on whether another person truly accepts and protects the things they claim to believe in. If she truly valued her beliefs in things like honesty, fidelity, friendship, she would have built boundaries around those things. When a person really honors their own core values, you can't make them cheat with a gun to their head.

Here's the thing though, by continuing to try and take ownership of someone else's choices, we are subconsciously attempting to control them. If we can make it about us instead of them, we have sway over it and can maybe prevent the hurt from happening again. We can make changes which will guarantee outcomes, right? Wrong. It's just a subconscious control mechanism that our brains default to when things are truly beyond our ability to manipulate. We can't MAKE other people honor their own values.

I love her, I know this. It hurts to see her upset with herself, hate herself, even though she "deserves" it. When she cries, I feel bad but at the same time... well? But I also can't shake the duality of both me feeling unworthy and feeling she is unworthy of me. I mean, I am the same guy, I haven't changed, how can she love me this much again all of a sudden after so much time? And how can I, with any self respect, accept her again as my partner in life?

My WH was the same way, and I felt about it much like you do. "Why now? You threw me away before, so what's changed?"

For the truly repentant cheater, it's because they FINALLY understood that they could really lose us. This goes back to earlier in the post where we accept that it's not about us. Nothing we did, nothing we said, caused the cheating. It wasn't in response to us. We're non-entities in the cheating choice. And THAT is what's so hard for us to contemplate. How can they look us in the face every day and not be reminded that we exist? How can they twist up their thinking until we're merely an impediment, or worse, someone who doesn't deserve better treatment? And the answer of course, is that there is nothing in their character which disallows mental gymnastics and compartmentalization to get what they want. It always tracks back to character, hers and not yours.

Of course, the unrepentant cheater is just crying crocodile tears to keep their home sitch going. The difference can be hard to spot, but ultimately is revealed by what exactly the WS is willing to do to remediate that broken character and whether they get it done. Time reveals the truth.

Then there is the "getting away with it" aspect, aside from losing her best friend, no one knows. The in laws sent us a card for our recent anniversary that expressed how proud they were of our perfect marriage how great we were together and what an example we were... you can imagine how I felt about that.

People will argue this point, but I think the truth of the matter is that when we take our WS back, they do indeed "get away with it"... and we have to let them, because that's part and parcel with the decision to take them back. Some will say that the difficult, introspective work a WS must accomplish, the pain of carrying the weight of their sins, knowing the anguish they've caused, means they aren't "getting away with it". But nothing they go through equals the pain they've caused to their BS. This is often an existential crisis, an abandonment which makes us question EVERYTHING in lives, the nature of love, the strength of relationship, even the existence of a caring God. They aren't traumatized by their own chosen actions. Maybe they experience some kind of partial trauma at the realization they aren't who they thought they were, but it's NOT the same.

The WS has no ability to pay us back for what we've gone through. No coin with value to equal the cost of their transgression. The best that we can do, once we've determined that the WS is truly repentant and willing (as well as capable) of remediating their broken character.. is to "write off" the balance of the damages. We can treat it like an accounting problem. Some of the WS's actions will mitigate their debt, things like accountability and character remediation, and those things can knock down the balance. But because NOTHING they can ever do will eliminate the debt, we MUST eventually release it in order to normalize the marriage. In marriage, we want two healthy, EQUAL partners. That's the goal... but it's a long time in coming. This concept of "writing off the debt" is for later, once you're sure of the personal healing she's accomplished and the changes in character she's made... and also once you're sure that you really want to stay. You're still early days. Right now you're still at the "trying for reconciliation" stage. It's not here yet.

[This message edited by ChamomileTea at 12:55 PM, September 16th (Wednesday)]

particle posted 9/16/2020 14:33 PM

ChamomileTea.

Wow. Thank you. This helps a lot.

Underserving posted 9/16/2020 16:13 PM

I donít really think my WH ďgot awayĒ with anything. He can never fully make amends, and there will always be a sense of injustice, but I think waywards have their share of suffering. Self-inflicted of course, hence the injustice.

I canít imagine being my WH right now. My family, including my parents and ultra religious grandparents, all know about his infidelity. You can see the shame on his face when heís around everyone who loves me and knows what he did to me. He has watched the respect of people he truly looks up to dwindle right before his eyes as he confessed to being unfaithful to his wife. Now, I donít feel sorry for him, but he will always carry that ďScarlett AĒ if you will. Itís not fun being the betrayed, by any means, but our very character wonít be questioned for years to come. Iíd rather go through this hurt, than be the scummy guy who lied and cheated on his wife with a druggie whore. Nor the one who gets to tell his daughters of his disgusting and disrespectful behavior against their mother when they are older. I think Iíd rather cut my arms off than endure all of those things.

Let her feel all the shame and disgust at herself. She needs to go through her own healing process. and facing those are a part of it. She should feel them. Not forever, I am not of the mindset waywards should punish themselves for all of eternity, but it wouldnít be a good sign if she didnít experience those emotions at all.

The mind movies get better. Even only 9 months out I can sit here and say ďyep my husband f-ed another woman. They did it in this position. He did this to her. She did that to himĒ and Iím ok. (I can even say the graphic things, but theyíre likely triggering to you, and others, so thatís why I didnít) I used to tremble when Iíd type that stuff out in the early months.

On the self-worth chamomile tea had great things to say, as she usually does.

4 months is still very early, so be gracious to yourself. I wouldnít even advise being fully committed to R so soon, from my own personal experience, but Iíve already said too much. Lol wishing you the best!


brokenInDenver posted 9/16/2020 17:01 PM

Particle you could have been writing my story. Couple details are different... i've been married only 13 years and the wife had a 9 month affair but whatever. I too found out a lot more details a few months after d-day. My wife is also very remorseful and our relationship never better since D-day. these days she's the wife i always wanted. She makes me breakfast of all things which I adore, she watches my stupid shows with me and I watch hers (so long as I can stay awake), I go grocery shopping with her, we have sex nearly every day... essentially we're the perfect couple. You wrote: 'we're back' and that freaked me out a little as my wife said that very thing to me a couple weeks ago. My sister in law told me weeks ago that my wife and I have what she thought was a perfect marriage... thing is she knows about my wife's infidelity. WTF! Anyway... you and I share a very similar story.

I'm in my 2nd year after d-day and i can tell you that you have a ways to go my friend. It gets better but we both still have a long road ahead of us, or so I am told. I still trigger every day... but not ALL day anymore so that is an improvement. Ive (we've) spent literally thousand upon thousands of dollars on therapy that helps but is by no means a miracle cure. I feel like I'm nearing the end of the useful therapy but my wife will probably be in IC the rest of her life.

One thing I have learned though and its something someone told me like 2 days after D-Day is that its not about you. I was not able to internalize this for quite some time after D-day. For months and months I was convinced it was because I wasn't in great shape... well her APs were fat fucks. I was convinced I had a small penis or that it didn't work right, convinced i was a bad lover, convinced I was unattractive, convinced I was not witty enough or didn't make enough money or maybe I complained too much about doing the taxes or remodeling the kitchen. Fuck all that... truth is and I know this now, my wife is a basket case. She has some oppressive and chronic belief that she is no good and is and has been desperate to feel better about herself for most of her life. I knew she had issues but thought they were mostly behind her since the day we married. Turns out she just didn't want me to know how fucked up she was. I know now that when someone shows they're interested in her she gets those kibbles and feels wonderful... if only for a short while. I believe she cheated to feel better about herself and had nothing to do with me.

Anyway... if there is any way you can internalize what I'm about to tell you I think you can shortcut your pain by months and months. Dude... your wife's affair is not about you or your marriage or what it was or wasn't. It's about your broken wife. Cheaters are all the same. Maybe she's having a mid-life crisis, maybe she feels like shit about herself and needs more than one man to buoy her self-image, maybe she's a narcissist selfish bitch who has no empathy (for the record i don't believe this about your wife). Either way it isn't you, I promise. I don't know you at all but I promise you its not about you any more than my wife cheating was about me. Once I was able to internalize that fact... well things feel easier. Its like a problem I have to solve and does not threaten who I am. Not sure I 100% want to solve the problem yet but that's a story for another thread.

Take care brother. I can tell you're a good man from how you talk about your wife. Don't let this destroy your self image, it's not about you.

Brew3x posted 9/16/2020 19:00 PM

I donít want to scare you or discourage you but just to gently warn you: the waves of anger and sadness and crippling feelings of low self worth and anxiety have only just begun. They will go on for years, especially as you remain with the very fountainhead of your pain
.

I second this, Iím one year out and the feelings of anger and sadness are certainly increasing. Although in a lot of respects Iím healing in many respects things are getting worse. I remember around month one reading a post about the sex and thinking oh I donít think about their sex much now I think about 24 hours a day.

You should ensure you are sleeping and taking care of yourself. Lack of sleep can wreak havoc On your body and
Mind.

[This message edited by Brew3x at 7:08 PM, September 16th (Wednesday)]

Butforthegrace posted 9/17/2020 07:39 AM

You first posted in JFO at the end of May, not quite 4 months ago. From context, I gather that the post was about a month after your Dday #1. Here are some excerpts from that first post:

I do not want to get into all the gory details.

In the morning I got a text that basically said she was the worst piece of human trash and the apologies started, they kept coming and coming, begging and pleading.

So, we talk and talk and talk. She stays that night, she stays home from work, we talk. She's not letting up.

It's now been two weeks and we've had lots of hysterical bonding. She's still here, she's still sorry and we have talked about so many things and she can see the emotional toll and the extreme hurt and betrayal.

She has not once shifted blame to me or even insinuated that anything was my fault.

she understood that she wasn't happy, but not communicating it

It has all been "my" fault (hers).

I know from reading a LOT of information online that this is a sign of true remorse.

She hadn't really texted or messaged anyone else about this situation so that's all I have to go on. It looks 100% genuine.

To recap, in the wake of your Dday #1, you came here with a post that is almost textbook newly minted BH, reeking of hopium, parsing a few days worth of words to find a simulacrum of "remorse" after 18 months of action loudly stating the opposite (fucking her AP and all of the decisions and sneaking and lying that goes along with that).

It was a natural response. You described your marriage leading up to that point as "20 years together, 2 kids. Always 'perfect'." The first stage of grieving under Kubler Ross is denial. The overwhelming wish of most newly minted BH's is that the infidelity were not true, not real, that the "perfect" marriage that had previously been your emotional reality would remain.

The difficult step is recognizing that your "perfect" marriage is gone, forever. The woman you thought you were married to is not the actual real flesh and blood woman you are in fact married to. That real woman is the kind of person who would betray a man who made a solemn vow with her and worked his ass off for 20 years to fulfill that vow, just because she was feeling vaguely dissatisfied.

I guarantee you that 10 years from now, 20 years, you will stare yourself down in the mirror and see the face of a man whose "perfect" wife spent a year + fucking somebody else. The question, then, is what life do you want to build around that reality.

Unlike many BH's, you never have shared details of the A, or how you discovered it, or the confrontation. If there is one thing I've observed here, it is that details matter. I suspect the reason for this omission is that you know what the overwhelming advice here would be if you provided those details. There are in fact some things that are just too big to overcome. Some insults that cannot heal so long as you remain in the marriage.

On June 17th (almost exactly 3 months ago), you posted:

I am not doing very well actually.

I found some more pertinent details (of the affair, not since) that are even more devastating.

I am getting my ducks in a row and she'll be out soon. I am pretty much done and don't feel like sharing anymore at the moment. I am not sure if I will be back here, just logging on makes it worse for me right now.

Post 1: "It is a sign of true remorse." "It looks 100% genuine".

Post 2: She was lying to my face even when I was believing that she has true remorse and is 100% genuine.

My friend, do you see the cognitive dissonance in your posts? You have difficulty looking at your WW objectively. You are not alone in this. We see it all the time here on SI.

In this current post, you say:

She is exceedingly remorseful, that's clear. I can hear her vomiting in the bathroom after I express my hurt and we cry sometimes. I know her.

Once again, grasping for straws, clinging to ersatz "remorse" without analyzing its authenticity. With all due respect, you don't know her. You know your fantasy of her, your imagination of the fictional woman you put on a pedestal. You are not looking at your flesh-and-blood human wife as the deeply flawed person she really is. I'm saying this because R requires, among other things, a sort of radical honesty, yet, from my perspective, you are persisting with a delusional dishonesty, even to yourself.

We are (except for my episodes) back to our pre wedding days in all ways. Talking, planning, living, emotionally and physically, it's all "perfect". We go everywhere together, we go to bed and sleep together, even if one of us stays up. We greet each other at the door with long hugs and kisses. We are "back".

Gently, that is not what a reconciled marriage looks like. That sort of saccharine charade has a limited shelf life and no nutritive value. It's make-believe as part of an effort to avoid the harsh reality created by the A.

I mean, I am the same guy, I haven't changed, how can she love me this much again all of a sudden after so much time? And how can I, with any self respect, accept her again as my partner in life?

Then there is the "getting away with it" aspect, aside from losing her best friend, no one knows. The in laws sent us a card for our recent anniversary that expressed how proud they were of our perfect marriage how great we were together and what an example we were... you can imagine how I felt about that.

So she basically gets to be the perfect wife in a perfect marriage and I am the only one who's directly affected. It doesn't seem fair. (is that selfish?) I don't want the world to know, but at the same time... I was seriously wronged here.

I guess my question is... I assume these feelings are normal but how long do these feelings last in a relationship that ends up working out? I mean, if we are still together in 3 years am I still going to wake up in a panic, or look at her funny from time to time?

To answer your question, your feelings are 100% normal. My friend, assuming your Dday #2 was in fact the point at which you learned the true extent of the A, you are only 3 months out from Dday. Most posters here observe/experience the emotional roller coaster of discovery for the better part of a year, or more. You're nowhere near a stage of this process where you can even begin to know if you want R or D.

3 years from now will be about the time you find yourself in what is called the "Plane of Lethal Flatness". That is the phase where you realize that, despite all of the HB, all of the masquerading as star-crossed teenage lovers to avoid the hard conversations, all of the hollow apologies and vomiting from her over the fear of losing her financial safety net, every morning when you look at your own mug in the mirror, you will think about that year+ when she was lying to you and sneaking around to fuck another man. EVERY morning. "This is my life, forever." The Plane of Lethal flatness. That forever, stretching out in front of you as far as you can see. "She fucked that guy." What were you doing with the kids at home the first time she came home stinking of her first sex with him? What did she say to you? Did she kiss you? Had she at least brushed her teeth before doing so? I guarantee you that this sort of detail will haunt you.

The question you need to be asking yourself is: what Particle do I want staring me back in the mirror when I have those thoughts? Divorce is not irrevocable. You have kids together. Divorce or not, you will remain in one anothers lives. You can date, have sex, court, re-marry if you choose.

Staying married IS irrevocable. You can never get those years back. SI is filled with BH's who wavered, took no action, and then came back 5, 10, even 40 years later wishing they had divorced.

I'm guessing you married young, which puts you possibly in your mid-40's, with a successful self-build business. A lot of life in front of you.

[This message edited by Butforthegrace at 8:47 AM, September 17th (Thursday)]

particle posted 9/17/2020 08:49 AM

Butforthegrace:

I appreciate the input, it jump started my anxiety today, but words I need to read. I know I am being a bit delusional, I know I am still in HB. I know we are "avoiding" it. I am not sure I want it to continue, I am not saying everything is rosy (for me), I am not committed to anything as of yet. I think about divorce every day. That's why I posted here, to find out from others how long this might last and to get advice. I don't believe my wife is perfect or anything, I don't believe she can't do it again. When I said I know her, I didn't mean what you assume I mean.

And my thoughts are jumbled, so forgive me if I say things that make no sense or roll back on previous...

However, I get the feeling from a lot of posts on this board, and it's understandable, that some assume only the words being written are the entire story. What I mean by this is my wife and I have talked... a lot. I have expressed everything since my last "She's out" post on the other sub forum. We had quite a week after that post. It's not like we just hug and kiss and pretend nothing happened. That might be the impression I am leaving but it's not the case. When a person in distress posts, it's usually from a specific and immediate mindset and it can leave out or "forget" previous posts or thoughts.

I am basically looking for help to save this marriage, not to kill it. Is it possible for me to get past this?


Gently, that is not what a reconciled marriage looks like. That sort of saccharine BS has a limited shelf life and no nutritive value. It's make-believe as part of an effort to avoid the harsh reality created by the A

This suggests that there is no reconciliation, is that what you are saying?

What am I supposed to be doing? What does a reconciled marriage look like?

Just for the record and I haven't mentioned this before, I saw a therapist. It was a complete disaster, I left the second session believing it was all my fault. The whole time is how/what do you feel about it, what did you do or not do?

Thumos posted 9/17/2020 08:57 AM

3 years from now will be about the time you find yourself in what is called the "Plane of Lethal Flatness". That is the phase where you realize that, despite all of the HB, all of the masquerading as star-crossed teenage lovers to avoid the hard conversations, all of the hollow apologies and vomiting from her over the fear of losing her financial safety net, every morning when you look at your own mug in the mirror, you will think about that year+ when she was lying to you and sneaking around to fuck another man. EVERY morning. "This is my life, forever." The Plane of Lethal flatness. That forever, stretching out in front of you as far as you can see. "She fucked that guy." What were you doing with the kids at home the first time she came home stinking of her first sex with him? What did she say to you? Did she kiss you? Had she at least brushed her teeth before doing so? I guarantee you that this sort of detail will haunt you.

It sounds like BFTG got your attention. He's good. Keep paying attention especially to this part.

Here's something else: Stop trying to "save the marriage." First, it's not your job. Second, she ALREADY killed it. Sounds like you haven't accepted this yet.

Really. No, really. I really mean it. The marriage is dead. She put two rounds in the heart, one in the head, set the remains on fire, dumped acid on what was left and then buried it in a shallow grave.

Dead, dead.

It's not YOUR JOB to "save the marriage." It's your job to heal yourself and it's a bitch of a process to say the least.

It's not your job to save your wife either. That's her job.

It's also her job to help you heal. If she can't do that, then get out as quickly as you can.

It is possible to reconcile. Possible, but very difficult. What you read here on SI are exemplars of WS's who got their shit together and helped their spouses heal.

Otherwise as I said you are not obligated to shackle yourself to the very source of your pain (and that source is her, man). You will figure this out. It's not the other man. It's not the house you live in or whatever. She is the source.

If you want to find a good therapist find a local one that specializes in betrayal trauma.

[This message edited by Thumos at 4:25 PM, September 17th (Thursday)]

Butforthegrace posted 9/17/2020 09:07 AM

Your therapist is a charlatan. I hope you are not seeing that person any more.

There is a tool recommended to most newly minted BH's called "The 180". You can read about it in The Healing Library (yellow box, top left of this page). The 180 is NOT punishment for your WW. It is NOT a gambit to induce your WW to do any specific thing.

The 180 IS a method of giving yourself some psychological space. The flood of emotions for a newly minted BH in the months post Dday is usually overwhelming, so much so that it feels like being unwittingly drugged, like somebody slipped a roofie in your drink and you can't even figure out what's right and wrong. Though the lure of HB and intense tete-a-tete conversations with your WW is strong, often this is merely an opiate that keeps you from acquainting yourself with your own heart's truth.

I am basically looking for help to save this marriage, not to kill it.

Gently, that is the wrong thing to look for. What you should be looking for is your heart's truth. The marriage you thought you had is not only dead, it never existed. The wife you thought you were married to also never existed. You might remain married, but a reconciled marriage will not look anything like a "saved" version of your old marriage. Reconciliation works when your wife does the work, with her IT, of figuring out what is broken in her moral compass and fixing herself, making herself into somebody new, and then you meet that new person and decided, with a beginner's mind, that this new person is a person you could forge a new marriage with.

You are WAY too early in the process to know if R is even possible. Maybe next summer, MAYBE, you might start having a glimmer of recognition as to whether R is possible.

In the meantime, it has been said here a million times -- because it's true -- to save your marriage, you have to be 100% willing to leave it. Let go of the outcome. Stop trying to "save the marriage". Instead, leave the marriage and start moving forward in life. If your WW wants to maintain a relationship with you, she will come along. If she does not, then there was no marriage to save.

In other words, it's only by walking away from her, with one eye peeled over your shoulder to see if she is rushing to catch up to you, that you can ever know there is even a marriage worth saving.


longsadstory1952 posted 9/17/2020 09:14 AM

It all comes down in the end as to what you can internally accept. That is going to take a while. It is way to early to tell. Two things. She is not going to stay in the role of the perfect wife. If you said she was in therapy I missed it. But she isnít going to fix her inner demons by herself.

So be ready for the shocker when she slowly starts acting put upon by your pain.

Second thing. Moving 1000 miles away will solve nothing. Not sure if you are hoping for something, but the reality is the same source of pain will be with you.

Only you can do you. If you want solid advice, get her into a serious no holds barred mental health program designed to challenge her thinking as opposed to validating her feelings. In reality, she should have done this for herself already.

Thereís an old song. ďA good day thereís no pain. A bad day is when you lie in bed thinking about what might have been.Ē

That is where you are now. Will you be there in a year? Not if she does the hard work, but being monitored and crying and vomiting is not that. Itís self analysis and I donít see that yet. Good luck. Were all in this together.

Oldwounds posted 9/17/2020 09:32 AM

This suggests that there is no reconciliation, is that what you are saying?

I think everyone who takes time to respond is just looking out for you, and some of them went through R and some not. That said, most members are looking for signals that you are taking steps to protect yourself.

I think you sound more self aware than some people are giving you credit for.

What am I supposed to be doing? What does a reconciled marriage look like?

First two years for me: Know your value, understand that nothing your WS did was the fault of you or your marriage.

If you then decide you still want R, it becomes about what your WS is doing to be a safer partner. We all love validation we donít all decide to cheat. She has to understand why she needed the validation of someone outside your relationship.

R to me, looks like two people aiming to build something worthy of them staying together. Itís tough, it takes time, and is possible if both people Ďwantí it.


particle posted 9/17/2020 10:42 AM

Your therapist is a charlatan. I hope you are not seeing that person any more.

Oh hell no, I noped out of that after the second session. I am more self aware than that even given the circumstances. It's not me.. I KNOW that. I mean yeah, I still have moments of feeling unworthy, but that passes. It's not my fault at all. I cannot believe a professional would try to make it (the infidelity) about me.

Pages: 1 · 2

Return to Forum List

Return to Reconciliation

© 2002-2020 SurvivingInfidelity.com ®. All Rights Reserved.     Privacy Policy