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I donít know where to put this.

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hollowhurt posted 10/23/2020 09:17 AM

"Lurker" here.

I am healing by watching others heal. Thank you.

HO, wow, you and your H can each walk a mile in each others shoes. It will be a hard mile, maybe a great finish line?? (trying to be positive in the only way I know)

Mrs. Walloped you posted:

But this is the thing that I keep thinking about. Beyond the AP, beyond the sex. One of the most difficult things my BH had to reconcile is who he thought we were together and what his life was versus my A. My affair put the lie to his vision of our life and our relationship. He questioned everything, our whole history. He thought he knew me and how I felt about him and us and our life and then I cheated on him. Coming to terms with that and figuring out whatís what was a long and painful journey.

How did you and your BH get past this?

MrsWalloped posted 10/23/2020 09:29 AM

How did you and your BH get past this?

No offense, but not the time nor the place.

Feel free to ask elsewhere.

beauchateaux posted 10/23/2020 09:37 AM

One of the things that is weird, is that I still operate like a WS. I have decided that's still best as well. I said I went out with friends last night. I still did all the protocol of checking in. I didn't create a fake facebook account because I wouldn't do that without telling him and I didn't want to go through that exercise.

This stood out to me, because it sort of speaks to why the general consensus on SI is to NOT have an RA. One affair doesn't cancel out another, and just because your spouse smashed their principals to smithereens doesn't mean you have to in order to be 'equal' in the marriage.

You've done a lot of work, HO, and what he did doesn't cancel that out, nor does it erase what happened between you after your A - at least, not from the perspective of YOUR journey.

You're going to continue to act in a way that seems right to you, and it doesn't really matter what he does or did (although I'm sure, as you said, it's grating).

I do have a question - and maybe it's too early and maybe I missed where you addressed this - but what's his mental/emotional state right now? Or have you just not found the strength yet to go there with him? I mean, is he doing the avoidance thing too? Is he saying anything about whether he wants to try and save the marriage? Is he apologetic, aghast, numb, dismissive, defensive? If he is apologetic, do you believe he's sincere? Just trying to get a feel for how HE is acting right now.

MrsWalloped posted 10/23/2020 09:58 AM

Youíre way too kind and give me credit I donít deserve. You help so many people and have grown and learned and have become so strong that you are truly an inspiration for me and for so many others.

But to be THAT focused on him, on us, on being a better spouse and still feel like that failed? It's exhausting. And, being that focused on him, how did I not see it? I thought we had climbed that Everest TOGETHER.

Yes, I can relate. And I hate how you must be feeling right now. But you didnít fail. You still did your part even if he didnít do his. You worked. You were authentic. You put the focus on where it should be. I know you thought you were a team in this but the fact that he wasnít true doesnít take away your efforts and your accomplishments.

So, now I have to keep trying to change course and make myself do it differently. It's like, hey hiking, you have studied well, here is your big freaking test!
As long as you know that the pass or fail isnít based on whether you R or D. Itís how you get through to the other side. Itís how you act and whether all those things you learned about yourself and worked on will still be there or will you now know how to deal with them in a healthy way. Are all those tools and the growth and elevation now you? I know that the answer is yes. You are a different you and youíve got this.

But, overall, I am shocked he did this.

(((Hugs)))

I don't have another mountain in me right now. I just don't. And, I don't even feel like pressuring myself to start the climb. And, maybe that's really best. It's his turn
.
No, this is not your mountain to climb. Itís his. You need to see whether he has it in him to do what you did. And you know what the real work looks like and what accountability and authenticity means. I know you must be doubting yourself because if he did this under your nose...but now your eyes are open. Your job as a BW is different than your job as a WW. Thereís a different load to bear and itís not necessarily easier. I am so sorry that you have to go through this after all your success. And I mean success. Please donít lose sight of that. No matter what.

hikingout posted 10/23/2020 10:08 AM

I do have a question - and maybe it's too early and maybe I missed where you addressed this - but what's his mental/emotional state right now? Or have you just not found the strength yet to go there with him? I mean, is he doing the avoidance thing too? Is he saying anything about whether he wants to try and save the marriage? Is he apologetic, aghast, numb, dismissive, defensive? If he is apologetic, do you believe he's sincere? Just trying to get a feel for how HE is acting right now.

No, he is not avoiding, he has wanted to talk as much as I will sit with him. He sobs a lot. I think I could count on less than one hand how many times in our decades together that I remember seeing him crying. That includes my affair (though I am sure maybe some of that was done privately). He has cried more than all our years together.

He has not waivered about wanting the marriage and I have begged him to just tell me if he just wants a divorce. I have given him every out, told him I knew I broke it. Told him he doesn't have to feel guilty about it. Everything. He called and made the IC appt. without hesitation. He's already read More Than Just Friends and I got in his truck earlier in the week and an infidelity podcast automatically came on where he had been listening to it prior.

It's early, right now I am sure I am seeing someone who is ashamed he was caught. Sometimes he gets me in my soft areas, and other times it just annoys me and I don't really want to hear it or take any of it in.

I believe he believes he is sorry. I believe he believes a lot of things though, some of which is bullshit. I believe he is trying to disclose everything, or he is at least pretty convincing in that aspect.

[This message edited by hikingout at 10:14 AM, October 23rd (Friday)]

hikingout posted 10/23/2020 10:13 AM

As long as you know that the pass or fail isnít based on whether you R or D.

No, I don't think that at all. I didn't really think that before I knew about his affair either. I still knew we could D. If we had gone straight to that, I would have always seen my affair as the failure that led there, but not the efforts after, and I wouldn't have put any of that on him at all.

I just meant in some of these things, they are just learned concepts but untested skills. And, mostly I was talking about having stronger coping mechanisms. I have learned I want to revert and use the old ones, but I know what I am supposed to do and I have to use that self awareness to now get myself to do it.

Luna10 posted 10/23/2020 10:38 AM

I have given him every out, told him I knew I broke it. Told him he doesn't have to feel guilty about it. Everything. He called and made the IC appt. without hesitation.

Please please stop taking responsibility for his A. Take responsibility for yours but telling him he doesnít have to feel guilty about it? No. Thatís his mountain to climb and he needs to feel all the guilt heís capable of.

I know what youíre trying to take responsibility for: you have indeed perhaps put the first nail in the coffin. You have spent the last three years trying to fix the crack. But in the end he may have just put the last nail in the coffin rather than get down there with you and help you fix it as he agreed to do when he chose not to D. Rather than pointing out there are still cracks that need fixing, he made you believe all is well. Rather than get to it and fix the part of the crack that he had responsibility to fix even if he didnít create it, he just put a shallow bandage on it and pretended it isnít there whilst his side of the crack got bigger and bigger.

The IC part is good, very good news. Iím glad. He needed to do that 3 years ago. Itís good to hear heís doing it now.

Striver posted 10/23/2020 10:52 AM

In the end, it's the same for you as it is for what I said earlier. What happens in this forum is a small piece of everything. This is YOUR life. You don't have to leave it behind or make it be less than it could have been -just because your ex wife did. Your value is not dependent of whether or not she ever saw it or not. You determine your own value. You determine your future. I can assure you that if you do decide to take control of that and maybe do some therapy and create a different vision for your life it will be worth while. You may even learn that you can put yourself more fully out there to someone because you trust yourself to be able to catch yourself.

And, maybe I am giving myself a peptalk at the same time? Either way, whatever you think of my status on this site, I want better for you. And, if I, a stranger on the internet, wants that for you, I hope you can find that you want that for yourself!

Take care Striver. It's okay that not everyone would want to support a MH. I get it and take no offense. I can see the ways I am not innocent in this. But, I can still know I am redeemable, and that two wrongs will never make a right.

HO,

I do appreciate this a lot. Thank you for writing it.

There are at least 3 ways we can interact with people.

1) We can hurt them.
2) We can ignore them.
3) We can help them.

For #1, we need to correct our behavior going forward, and make amends, try to heal the hurt.
For #2, we're not #1, but we're not being compassionate either.
#3 creates the best world.

However much we do to make #1 happen doesn't negate #3. They're different transactions with different people. You take the time to read my posts and respond well to them. I do appreciate that quite a lot.

As for the one member here who has not confessed, I think if his BW ever is here, it might be more knives out against him because of that. I just feel bad and complicit even reading his posts, even though there's nothing I can do. I don't deserve that window into her life, even anonymously.

hikingout posted 10/23/2020 11:35 AM

Please please stop taking responsibility for his A. Take responsibility for yours but telling him he doesnít have to feel guilty about it? No. Thatís his mountain to climb and he needs to feel all the guilt heís capable of.

I don't think that's what I was doing. I was trying to provide him the least resistance to admit to me he wants out. Where we are right now I have no idea if he stayed out of obligation, guilt, or some other reason. I don't trust he doesn't want a divorce. I don't trust that he knows if he wants a divorce. This is not me taking responsibility, this is me trying to get the truth.

HellFire posted 10/23/2020 11:48 AM

I don't think it's been mentioned yet,but there are a few things you must require of him immediately. He needs to be tested for stds, and he must be NC.

hikingout posted 10/23/2020 11:48 AM

Striver:

However much we do to make #1 happen doesn't negate #3. They're different transactions with different people. You take the time to read my posts and respond well to them. I do appreciate that quite a lot.

That makes a lot of sense and I do feel glad you are able to read what I write to you and not always discount it because I am a WS. It speaks volumes because as everyone has already mentioned to you, it's obvious to all of us that you are carrying a lot of pain that you do not deserve to carry. To me, even this message back demonstrates that you have maybe done a little more healing than your conscience mind realizes.


Evertrying posted 10/23/2020 11:50 AM

I am sure I am seeing someone who is ashamed he was caught

Probably so. I truly think he was done with her and didn't know how to back out of it. Hard too because she worked for the two of you.

I have always believed in the saying "Don't shit where you eat" and I told my husband the same thing. Affairs in the workplace seem to always end badly.

But anyway, I think he would have taken this to his grave and never told you. If she had accepted him ending the affair, I don't think you would have ever known unless YOU found some evidence at some point.

I don't have any words of wisdom for you HO, but will say you been such an inspiration for so many here and we appreciate you. I just hope and pray that you find your way through. Whatever that may be.

hikingout posted 10/23/2020 11:57 AM

Hellfire, thank you. I did mention in one of my posts those things were happening. This thread is voluminous and I write really long responses, so I know its a lot of details to keep up with.

He had his panel done earlier this week. NC was required immediately. When he initially seemed to be hesitating on firing her I immediately threw him out to live in the camper until it was done. She is blocked on both of our stuff. Breaking NC is a dealbreaker for me. If my foggy, limerent self could do it, so can he. No tolerance.

crazyblindsided posted 10/23/2020 13:52 PM

Hard too because she worked for the two of you.

This was a hurdle for me as well. The fact that MOW worked for my STBX and had met me and my kids. I had let her into my home while she was screwing him. They had sex on my son's little bed and she had talked about like it was some prized behavior. I was mortified and still sick about it when I think about it. When you've interacted with the AP before knowing what was going on feels like a double betrayal. Makes me even more angry at STBX for that part knowingly watching me interact with her while he was doing what he was doing

Underserving posted 10/23/2020 15:27 PM

Iím so late to this, but wanted to say Iím so sorry you are experiencing this. Thereís NEVER a valid excuse for infidelity, and itís ALWAYS selfish and destructive.

I have so appreciated you helping us betrayeds get some understanding into the mindset of someone having an A. Your insight has been beneficial to me, and many others it seems.

I hope you allow yourself the opportunity to mourn, get mad, and process everything as any other BS would. I very much believe if anyone is capable of coming out of this MH situation stronger and better, itíd be you, and I obviously donít even know you.

Sending prayers, strength, and virtual hugs. You will make it through this.

Thumos posted 10/23/2020 16:57 PM

Hikingout, at some point (not now) I want to ask you how you regard some of our recent exchanges regarding intentionality and the like, in the light of what is happening now.

I have found these to be rewarding and helpful conversations. I don't want to get into it now in the midst of fresh, raw pain for you. But you are a very insightful person who "writes out loud" to some extent like I do and I want to continue to glean your perspective.

My thoughts and prayers are with you. I know we aren't supposed to discuss religion much here, but hopefully the moderators will allow me a slight diversion here as a gesture of grace and kindness to you: I did want to say that I have recently rediscovered Catholicism (I was raised sorta half-Catholic, half-Methodist) and I am in the process of converting now to the Catholic church. The Prayer to St. Michael has been helping me a lot lately, and I have been saying it along with others with you and many others here on SI in mind.

I know it may make me sound like a superstitious nut to some here on SI, but I do believe in angels and I believe they surround us and are fighting on our behalf every single day in a realm we can barely understand. I believe they are fighting for you.

I hope you have as relaxing and restful a weekend as possible.

[This message edited by Thumos at 4:58 PM, October 23rd (Friday)]

hikingout posted 10/23/2020 20:49 PM

Thumos- I donít mind to try and answer your question if am able to. Writing helps, questions are prompts.

JBWD posted 10/23/2020 22:37 PM

I don't have another mountain in me right now.

Just how I felt when I started working on myself. I think our journeys are always uphill, and while I know it feels daunting-

I think youíve gotten so used to climbing (Hiking?!) that youíre already doing it. And itís not gonna be easy but you know what? Youíre tough as nails. It wonít make it hurt less and Iím so sorry that any of us have to hurt.

But the climb is already in work.

Thinking of you, my friend!!

amethyst0323 posted 10/24/2020 07:22 AM

Hiking, I logged into the forum because Iím struggling at minute (anniversary of their romantic weekend away I saw approaching)

You were so important to me in the early days of the aftermath of my WHís affair.

I have no advice and nothing of importance to say because Iím not in a great place but I want you to know my heart hurts of you. Iím devastated for you both because you both seemed to have achieved so much together.

Take care of you hiking and I donít believe for one second you are responsible for any of his choices. I wish you peace and healing xxx

farsidejunky posted 10/24/2020 11:36 AM

HO:

I have been quietly lurking on your thread from the start. With the overwhelming amount of solid advice you are receiving, combined with your own solid analysis, I didn't really see anything new to contribute.

So let me start by saying that you are one of my favorite posters on this site, in advising both wayward's AND betrayed's. Your high EQ comes through clearly in your posts. I am sorry you have found yourself in this situation.

Your husband's emotions this week are interesting. Yes...he is sorry he has been caught. But...you are also getting a clearer picture of the real person underneath the stoic facade. I think it is important for him to unpack the stoicism in IC. He needs to delve into the reasons for the stoicism, and for whom he believes he is helping by burying his emotions. Furthermore, what did he do for an outlet prior to your A? I'm not suggesting another AP, but I'm real curious what his coping mechanisms were prior to the AP. It also speaks to fear. What he actually fears would be an interesting thing to tackle with him, but probably best suited to do with an IC for now.

Second, I think it important to remind you that it is okay to be emotional...angry...hurt (of which anger is a secondary emotion)...fearful...etc. You NEED to fully experience these emotions to properly work your way through the healing process. Don't get so caught up in following the clinical / tactical steps you know that you neglect the necessary emotional steps you must go through as well. Perhaps you are doing this in-person, while keeping your posts matter-of-fact. If so, great. Just don't bury your emotions.

Next, I can't recall a post from you detailing how physically active you are...but find some form of a physical outlet if you have done so already. Anger and anxiety have fewer physical manifestations when we exercise.

Lastly, it sounds like he is being pretty forthcoming. I believe that if he held any notions of not wanting the marriage, he would be hiding these painful details from you. I see this as a good foundational start for R. Toxic shame is a funny thing, and presents yet another topic for him to tackle in IC.

Take care of yourself.

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