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I donít know where to put this.

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Gettingoveritall posted 10/21/2020 15:15 PM

hikingout, I am so sorry about this turn of events. Discovering you have been cheated on sends you into a confused spiral of emotions and causes you to question just about every aspect of your life. I can see where having cheated yourself would add another wrinkle into the mix, but big-picture your headspace right now is similar to every other BS's.

I don't have anything brilliant to add to the advice and support you have been given. I just want to remind you that you will get through this. No matter what happens with your marriage, you will ultimately be okay.

My only advice to you is to take your time to figure out what you want. You need to decide if this is a deal-breaker for you. Set your own cheating aside and figure out if his cheating is something you can live with. If it is a deal-breaker, you know what you need to do. If you end up deciding that reconciliation is on the table, you will have plenty of time to figure out if he is worthy of reconciliation.

No one deserves to be cheated on. No one causes their spouse to cheat. Even faithful spouses go down the rabbit hole of "what ifs" and "if only I had." Your husband cheated. Maybe he lacked the coping mechanisms to deal with your cheating. Maybe he was chasing ego-kibbles. Maybe he cheated to get even. It's his job to figure that out whether you guys stay together or not.

Right now you need to take some time and figure out if any potential whys matter.

Stay strong! You have a lot of people who care about you here. Never forget that.

hikingout posted 10/21/2020 15:41 PM

These are good questions. You are always an even keeled poster.

I will think on it. The more paranoid I become about the potentials of other affairs the more I donít think I will want to go on with this. He says no, but the maneuvers in some of this, his ability to compartmentalizations so well, and really be able to hide this when we were so seemingly connected, and under my nose- well I donít like it.

And it might be projecting. The AP in my situation was a serial. There are parallels I am seeing but they could be a mirage composed from fear. It now haunts me that I know the AP had so many affairs and I knew this information. It makes me wonder if his wife ever learned of anything past me. It bothers me more now that I am in this position. I am tempted to ask the obs to ask the AP if she is privy to this information. But I know that is a mistake. She would see that as an in and potentially lie in one direction or the other.

I have asked him, he says no. I told him if I find out he is lying itís over. He claims this is all. I am gonna let the dust settle but I have been calling poly companies. He asked if he does one will I do one too, sure whatever. I am not sure where that is coming from but I donít like the sound of it. Makes me think that he was hoping I would bail so he didnít have to. Who knows. Now that we got to a lot more details I am going crazy and now wanting to dig. There is a lot more swirling around than there was yesterday.

So, the question is complicated. I still feel like if this is what it looks like on the surface - one affair in a dark time in his life, no I donít think itís a deal breaker for me. But how he handles himself moving forward and whether I get lies or the truth will really determine if I put any more effort into this. But you know, ask me tomorrow as another one of my personalities shows up.

I think had a lot of clarity two weeks ago about what I wanted from my life, from him, what I wanted our marriage to look like. So my want list is just the truth, for him to get some clarity and if he canít or wonít do, Or ultimately mine was a deal breaker for him I want for him to not waste my time any more.

Itís probably going to take months for me to really be able to have the answers of what this means to me, but I wonít disregard it. I have put myself second until I found myself in a dark place. My journey so far has taught me I am
Mine and this is my journey and I have to honor myself. I wonít lose that in all of this. Or at least I hope I will not.

GuiltAndShame posted 10/21/2020 15:50 PM

Dear HikingOut,
I just heard about the new developments in your life, so I wanted to come tell you that YOU ARE AWESOME and that I APPRECIATE YOUR BRAIN. :)
Seriously, of all the people who commented on my posts as a WS, your words and advice and guidance always made sense and helped me understand and grow and improve. Thank you for all your time and words.
Plus I love hiking, immersing myself in the peace and beauty of the natural world, so your nickname is perfect. :)
P.s. As a fellow WS, I understand your perspective on how his choice to have an affair may be entangled with your own previous choice to have an affair, without there being an element of revenge or payback associated. Does bringing infidelity into a relationship increase or reduce the likelihood of further infidelity? How often does a BS seek comfort from a person, only to have that confidant become an AP? I admit that those types of questions have crossed my mind.

Thumos posted 10/21/2020 15:52 PM

I ask this gently just to gain context: If I'm reading your updates and the timeline correctly, the inklings of your BH's affair began when you were still in a wayward fog. Am I correct on that? Doesn't excuse what happened, but adds context to the MH situation.

I know that I was myself mightily tempted to have an RA. And a big part of it was my WW's ongoing fog. As you know, to this day we still haven't resolved her lack of transparency -- and her failed poly just drove a nail in that coffin for me.

I haven't talked about this much, but I was tempted over the past couple of years. There were a number of women who would have been available. The lack of specialness with my WW was a driving factor in this temptation as well, and ultimately why I decided I'd be better off divorced from her.

Here's what stayed my hand on an RA:

1. If I did it with another married woman, I'd be guilty of visiting the same horrific pain on another married man that I myself was and am enduring. I simply couldn't countenance that, and that right there was a hard stop.

2. But in addition, it helped me to really think through what kind of married woman would be willing to have an affair with me. I'd be complicit in her decision to betray her husband. And I'd be responsible for potentially breaking up a family with the impact that would have on the children.

3. I would be joining my WW in the mire and grime she'd willfully wallowed in. I didn't want to be down in that with her, and I already felt tainted by HB and my decision to stay after DDAY.

4. Finally, I reasoned that if I were to have an ONS or RA with a single woman, the chances that I would be using her for NSA sex would be very high and the odds that I'd end up hurting this woman would also be very high. How could I look at myself in the mirror in the morning knowing I'd done that?

Part of what your husband is going to have to grapple with is why he couldn't reason through these things (and my ability to reason through these things is one of the biggest reasons I'm always so skeptical about WS claims regarding intentionality and harm to their BS).

In my opinion, once a BS knows the horror of what they've endured the decision to have an RA is more complex and ramified than the original adultery in many ways. He will need to grapple with that too. Is he even willing to do that?

Luna10 posted 10/21/2020 15:54 PM

Iím glad youíre looking into a poly and trying to get some peace. You need to do what you need to do. I donít like his answer either by the way (regarding you taking a poly too), I do think itís a red flag, youíll find out soon enough.

The fact that youíre so graceful trying to understand and make sense of what happened in a more or less senseless situation, does you justice. Itís all the work you have done paying back now.

Unfortunately your BH/WHís work is only beginning, should he wish to face his own issues.

It is too early to torture yourself with making a decision. Take your time, put the decision making aside, give yourself a deadline when to re-evaluate and then take the pressure off if you can.

Hugs, lots of them, Iím sorry youíre hurting.

landclark posted 10/21/2020 15:55 PM

his ability to compartmentalizations so well

I can so relate to this. It's the same issue I have with my WH. It's not a fun position to be in, and causes endless nagging doubt.

I have no words of wisdom, just wanted to say I am thinking of you, and I'm sorry you find yourself here!

Luna10 posted 10/21/2020 16:01 PM

In my opinion, once a BS knows the horror of what they've endured the decision to have an RA is more complex and ramified than the original adultery in many ways. He will need to grapple with that too. Is he even willing to do that?

Bingo! Thatís a good place to start digging. The ow in my story was a single mother after allegedly her WH left her for another woman. Once the pain installed in my life I struggled to understand how someone could ever inflict the same pain on someone else knowingly.

I get the fact that you perhaps didnít matter (due to having the affair first) I can see how that could have formed in his brain. But what about the OBS? I know that the AP has no responsibility towards the BS but come on, I know for sure that I couldnít inflict this pain on another woman and her kids now that I know exactly how it feels.

[This message edited by Luna10 at 4:03 PM, October 21st (Wednesday)]

Twinkies posted 10/21/2020 16:14 PM

Just a couple of thoughts, you have been here write s while as a wayward, you are very newly here as a betrayed. Unfortunately I don't believe your time add s wayward will speed up the process as betrayed. You are weeks in and it is understandable you are/were feeling detached and then find thoughts swirling. The buddy and brain tries to protect us. Another poster said they thought others were pushing not to forgive to me it felt like others may be pushing you to be farther along than your few weeks. This is on your time table. For me I was on auto pilot and bounced between numb to overwhelmed by feelings.

As far as him pushing the RV and travel, if he had any avoidance tendencies this makes total sense. My H was in the middle of his affair while talking about moving states away, starting a new business. This would include uprooting our them 10 year olds as well. He says it was his way of escaping the affair. So the affair was his way of escaping his life and his life was his way of escaping his affair... He also said he was afraid that she would contact me and blow it all up.

Again I'm not excusing his choices but (i know!!!!) her was 18 months from dday and 6 months from last real disclosure. It may have been a RA but it may have been that his foundation was still rocked and he let someone in that he should not have (windows where walls should be and all that). Still responsible but not from a stable place. Not from revenge but from selfishness.

[This message edited by Twinkies at 4:56 PM, October 21st (Wednesday)]

crazyblindsided posted 10/21/2020 16:22 PM

But how he handles himself moving forward and whether I get lies or the truth will really determine if I put any more effort into this.

Exactly this was my measuring barometer too.

ChamomileTea posted 10/21/2020 16:25 PM

He claims this is all. I am gonna let the dust settle but I have been calling poly companies. He asked if he does one will I do one too, sure whatever. I am not sure where that is coming from but I donít like the sound of it.

That's because you're hearing entitlement. It does kind of put all the wailing and tears in perspective, doesn't it?... that he still thinks he gets to wear the BS hat, right now on the heels of DDay on his EIGHTEEN MONTH affair.

I know you've got this all tangled up in your head, but NO ONE deserves to be cheated on. No one. If you think that about yourself, why not think it about me or about anyone else here? We ALL lead imperfect lives. So, if you think you somehow deserved it, you're WRONG. The guy had options, and better options than most considering the golden parachute you were providing to him. He has NO EXCUSE for what he did. None.

I suspect you think some of us are being overly harsh with our criticism of him. And I really do understand how a BS can become weirdly protective of their WS. I know I was. But the first step in making sure that your WH can become R material is to treat him like any other WS and hold him fully accountable for HIS CHOICES. He can't have a fig leaf to hide behind. You know that. He's not going to have a full on confrontation with his own failed character if he's got you to hide behind. So, it's not about being harsh. It's about exposing his defective character because he can't fix what he won't acknowledge.

It's an insult that he turns your request for a poly back on you, like you didn't spend the last few years authentically, like your weren't doing your utmost to connect with him, like he wasn't accepting your efforts, when all along HE KNEW he was cheating and lying. Like I said earlier, this isn't a situation in which the sins are even. He knew what being a BS is, and he chose that for YOU.

Oldwounds posted 10/21/2020 16:29 PM

Makes me think that he was hoping I would bail so he didnít have to.

Wow. Thereís a deja vu for me. This was my wifeís rationalization for keeping her A a secret for almost 18-years.

Then it turned out she just didnít want to face her truth.

That said, while I think there are very few silver linings to infidelity, this unique trauma forces us all to really confront our truth.

You confronted your demons Hiking, and you evolved into a stronger, more complete version of you on the other side. Maybe ó if your husband is willing to face his truth ó he can be a better person on the other side of this. Maybe.

Infidelity in my world, allowed me to discover what I truly want out of this very short, but dramatic existence.

I like that youíre working on your want list.

Itís still so early in discovery, but donít change what you want or need from life (with or without a spouse).

foreverlabeled posted 10/21/2020 16:42 PM

He claims this is all. I am gonna let the dust settle but I have been calling poly companies. He asked if he does one will I do one too, sure whatever. I am not sure where that is coming from but I donít like the sound of it.
I heard that from ex, I think you need to follow through, for sure.. It was just after I found out (2 weeks after my dday) he was in the midst of his TT and I said I wanted a poly, he got defensive and demanded I take one as well. I said, yeah okay let's get something booked. We didn't follow through but honestly we should have.

Gettingoveritall posted 10/21/2020 16:59 PM

So, the question is complicated. I still feel like if this is what it looks like on the surface - one affair in a dark time in his life, no I donít think itís a deal breaker for me. But how he handles himself moving forward and whether I get lies or the truth will really determine if I put any more effort into this.

Have you asked for or has he given you a written timeline of his affair?

His response to the polygraph sent up a red flag in my mind too. Prior to getting caught in his own affair had he told you he questioned if you had given him the whole truth or if you had cheated before? If he hasn't been expressing doubts about your honesty, what is the reason he wants you to take a poly now?

For your own piece of mind I think you need to follow through with him taking a polygraph. It sounds like you absolutely need some assurance that he is being truthful, and although a poly does not restore trust 100 percent, it can still help.

If he still demands that you take one too, I think that indicates that (best case scenario) he hasn't dealt with your affair as well as he has led you to believe that he has, or, (worst case scenario) he is trying to get out of taking one because he is still lying about something.

I think a written timeline followed by a polygraph is your best path to the (most) truth.

Your husband was not who you thought he was. Just how much different of a person he is than you thought is what you need to determine.

Again, I am sorry this has happened. You don't deserve this.

DIFM posted 10/21/2020 17:09 PM

Diff - No, in this case itís gets to stand alone and suck separately from my affair.

I'm sorry if my comment sounded like I was connecting your A with is lying. His lies and betrayals stand alone and he alone is accountable to those wrongs. What I was saying was, you were able to come from a place of lies to a place of honesty and mindfulness. The possibility is that he too can own his wrongs and, with work and commitment, may too come to a similar place.

hikingout posted 10/21/2020 17:30 PM

Thanks difm for clarifying, I did read what you said wrong.

Thumos- no, I was not still in the fog. But my timeline really shows we werenít that far out from it and the divorce when the ap knew that this has happened. I believe she went to work on it almost immediately. We were somewhere close to 18 months out when they kissed. I was really trying to illustrate that we were in a different place and I was not who I am today.

Everyone else - I agree. I will take whatever damned test he wants. I think for him there is some comparison of the aftermath of mine - he never requested a poly, didnít kick me out, I slept in the bed, we had sex immediately, etc. but we are not the same person and there are different things to react to. He isnít pushing me to be the same but I think he just didnít expect some of this.

Buck posted 10/21/2020 18:40 PM

Hiking, before I say anything else, I wanted to thank you for posting here at SI. You've helped me tremendously in relating to my wife. I honestly thought you were my wife when I first came here. You post verbatim some of things she's said in our discussions. I used to take what she said as "therapy speak" or even outright bullshit. Your posts have made me approach things with her differently, it's helped to see someone else with a very similar viewpoint. It's made a world of difference. It takes a lot of guts to open yourself up to criticism and comment and it always impresses me how you handle yourself. Thank you with all sincerity.

I did what your H is now doing. Any question she asked about my A I immediately flipped back to her and asked the same damn thing about her A. If she accused me of something, I accused her too. This is some of what I was talking about when I said it's hard to communicate about what you or he did separately. It made communication extremely slow and just caused arguments. Our MC said we should communicate in writing only for some period of time. It helped a bunch. I at least had to answer her questions and it deescalated the situation. It's just a suggestion that may or may not apply to you.

I had an 18mo RA too. My wife had a 6mo A roughly 2 years prior. I did not get caught. I also wanted to end it for some time but didn't really know how to do it. She was pressuring me for more, she was single and wanting a husband, and I did not want that. Ultimately, she got tired of waiting and it sort of fizzled out. My wife had no idea either. I had another A two years later. She also no idea about this one either and it lasted roughly 4.5 years. Before that, I had never even come anywhere close to cheating. So what he's saying is possible.

Also, something to keep in mind, those talking about entitlement are spot on. It's not run of the mill entitlement though. It's the "here's a taste of your own medicine" this is so unfucking fair WTF can she really say entitlement. I'm saying this so you can prepare yourself because it's likely coming.

And hang in there, you're going to be okay.

hikingout posted 10/21/2020 23:02 PM

I get the fact that you perhaps didnít matter (due to having the affair first) I can see how that could have formed in his brain. But what about the OBS? I know that the AP has no responsibility towards the BS but come on, I know for sure that I couldnít inflict this pain on another woman and her kids now that I know exactly how it feels.

Itís a good question. There is quite a lot he is going to have to figure out and face.

As a wayward, I will tell you that is part of why I think all the badmouthing of the spouse happens. Not only is the ws minimizing you they are making a case as to why their ap should too.

He has already said that the ins treats her like garbage. Oh okay. So the two of you arenít doing that to your respective spouses? I have been down that road, fell for it hook, line and sinker. If you have more than one kid and one is in trouble has the other one
Ever tried to ingratiate themselves on how they are so
Much better than their other sibling? They slide right in there and dig for it. Right? It looks
Similar.

Unhinged posted 10/21/2020 23:09 PM

...he just didnít expect some of this.
I'd imagine he didn't. It seems obvious to me that you probably didn't expect some of this, either.

Be careful with expectations. Establishing boundaries and laying out reasonable requirements for reconciliation are perfectly fine. It's when we start to expect things to happen that we get ourselves into trouble. This is particularly true, I think, regarding the expectations that we set for ourselves.

For the most part, what you're going through really isn't all that different from what so many other betrayed spouses go through. And you're going to have to go through it all, my dear. I'm sure you know that there are no short-cuts or quick fixes, no way around it. And while I think you have a fairly good idea what a BS goes through, it's something else entirely to experience it, don't ya think?

So, I'm going to tell you the same thing I'd tell any other betrayed spouse. Focus on you, your recovery and healing. Step-back, detach, watch and observe what your WS does with the opportunity you're giving them. Take care of you. Be gentle and kind to yourself. Read what tushnurse wrote to you again.

[This message edited by Unhinged at 11:23 PM, October 21st (Wednesday)]

TwoDozen posted 10/22/2020 04:12 AM

@HikingOut Iím relatively new here and still stuck in my own ambivalence on how I feel about what my WGF has put me through. I read as much as I can, take what I need and leave the rest but to give myself a balanced perspective there are a few posters who advice I gravitate towards, in the pro R and pro D side and your posts are definitely in my go to reads of what I thought a good R looked like. So I am very sorry for both you and all those including me that believed your situation was so much better than it turned out to be.

I was not here when your ďBSĒ posted but after reading this thread I wanted to understand so I looked for his posts. I read his original JFO and I was kinda shocked. Firstly in how Blasť his writings were, okay he was at that stage a ways down the road from me but he seemed to be remarkably at ease with it all. The second thing that shocked me was all the fellow posters telling him, right off the bat what an ďabsolute legendĒ you are and essentially how lucky he was. Donít get me wrong, as I said above I gravitate to your posts because I think you really ďGet itĒ and I wish I could see that work from my own WGF but...... if everyone started telling me how lucky I was, Iím pretty sure some resentment would start building up....

Second thing I wanted to mention was that your H knows about your posts on here and your username etc. I know in my case my WGF shared all sorts of personal info about me with her AP - I hope your H has not shared the fact that you post on here.

Again so sorry you find yourself in this situation, I have taken a great deal of knowledge from what you write on here and I wanted to say thank you for that.

Luna10 posted 10/22/2020 05:42 AM

Itís a good question. There is quite a lot he is going to have to figure out and face.

As a wayward, I will tell you that is part of why I think all the badmouthing of the spouse happens. Not only is the ws minimizing you they are making a case as to why their ap should too.

He has already said that the ins treats her like garbage. Oh okay. So the two of you arenít doing that to your respective spouses? I have been down that road, fell for it hook, line and sinker. If you have more than one kid and one is in trouble has the other one
Ever tried to ingratiate themselves on how they are so
Much better than their other sibling? They slide right in there and dig for it. Right? It looks
Similar.

HO I understand where cognitive dissonance and justification fit into an affair. Iíve spent 3 years processing and I still process it. Itís not easy to live with the knowledge that the person who sleeps next to you and hugs you every night, just like he did during the A, badmouthed you so he can justify his shitty choices.

What adds an extra layer to your Hís affair is his knowledge of it. For example I have processed and understood why my WH told his AP I didnít even make him a tea after a night of working (work emergency) choosing to ignore the fact that, by having a work affair and communicating via the work IM system pretending heís working every night for 5 months and every weekend for two hours in order to actually talk to her, I built resentment as my perception was that his work has taken over his life and comes first. Of course, he needed to justify to himself and her why he was having an affair, see, my wife doesnít care about me, she didnít even make me a tea after I worked all night, rather than wonder why my reaction was that? (BTW: I was cooking dinner every fucking night whilst he was ďworkingĒ/talking to his AP, making sure he didnít have extra stress, apparently that doesnít count for much.)

Should I have been the one having an affair rather than my WH (before his affair) I can give you a whole list of grievances I could have used to justify it (including the above, my H pays no attention to me as heís always working). Heck, imagine the list of justifications I have now.

But... we, as BSes spend months, years processing this. We learn about cognitive dissonance. We bleed when we realise that our spouses talked badly about us even if we understand the mechanics of an affair.

We as BS continue to wonder why they didnít divorce. Why they didnít leave. Why didnít they even express these grievances. We process day in, day out.

There is no way your H didnít think ďwtf? Why didnít she divorce? How could she do this to me?Ē

As a person who never cheated nor experienced infidelity first hand before this I can totally see how it happened, in your case, in my WH case. But I am now fully aware of it. I am now fully aware that nothing, absolutely nothing gives me the right to inflict that pain on another person.

So back to your H, just like me he isnít an infidelity ďvirginĒ. Just like me, Iím sure he stood there having WTF moments untangling your affair. Just like me he discovered that infidelity has no justification whatsoever. And yet he chose to do it and inflict that pain on other people, fuck them. He isnít the naive person he was before your affair.

I donít know if you get it but his affair whyís are deeper than yours. His affair was committed knowing the consequences of it 100%. And that for me itís a new level of selfishness and deceit.

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