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I Can Relate :
BS Questions for WS - Part 14

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MrsWalloped ( member #62313) posted at 7:36 PM on Monday, July 12th, 2021

Dude67,

it’s just that I think the damage to a BH who was a terrific husband in a great marriage can be worse .

I don't know if anyone's feelings of betrayal is worse than another. They are all horrible.

rugswept,

It appears your initial response after "it happened" was self preservation. Maybe that is what dominates the mind in this situation.

Totally. I wasn't really thinking about the impact on my BH after DDay. A lot of the time was a blur but I wasn't focused on him at all. I was focused on me. The end of the A and what was going to happen to me. I was very fortunate that I had someone to help me through that period that was able to wake me up to that and get my head on straight. I don't want to speak for anyone else, but most situations I see where the BS catches the WS, the WS goes immediately into self preservation mode. Empathy and a true unde3rstanding of what we did to our BS can only come after time, and time spent really thinking things through and focusing on the BS, at that. It's definitely not something that happens right after DDay.

Me: WW 47
My BH: Walloped 48
A: 3/15 - 8/15 (2 month EA, turned into 3 month PA)
DDay: 8/3/15
In R

posts: 699   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2018
id 8674876
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LadyG ( member #74337) posted at 3:07 AM on Wednesday, July 14th, 2021

Hi, I rarely ask any questions as my WS rarely answers honestly.

But one occasion WS said, “I am not and was not in love with AP. But maybe in lust, I don’t know”.

So, I think that lust for the AP or someone like the AP never ever goes away. WS was Watching porn and seeking out particular porn that reminded him of the AP.

Does the WS ever stop lusting after it?

September 26 1987 I married a monster. Chronic Complex PTSD. I Need Peace. Fiat Lux. Buddha’s Love Saves Me 🙏🏼

posts: 940   ·   registered: Apr. 29th, 2020   ·   location: Australia
id 8675350
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disgustedbyme ( new member #58046) posted at 11:02 PM on Wednesday, July 14th, 2021

So a question was asked about when the AP said disparaging things about the BS how could a wayward continue on. For me it was about compartmentalizing. I just didn't think about it. When I was sexting men I just focused on my own pain and need for control. I didn't consider my BS. When I really think back to that time it boils down to a decision. I chose not to think my marriage or the destruction I was causing. When I drill deeper it's really a wicked ability to turn off those thoughts. It takes a lot to not think about the destruction. I'm not looking for sympathy, but providing this as a way to help and explain my actions - I was sexually abused by my father. As a child I learned to stop thinking about the abuse and just exist in the moment. I used the same way of thinking during my affair.

posts: 48   ·   registered: Mar. 30th, 2017
id 8675602
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rugswept ( member #48084) posted at 1:29 AM on Thursday, July 15th, 2021

Mrs Walloped: Thank You for your latest comment.

It is insightful.

R'd (rug swept everything) decades ago.
I'm big on R. Very happy marriage but can never forget.

posts: 964   ·   registered: Jun. 2nd, 2015   ·   location: Northeast US
id 8675658
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Confusedmd ( new member #78802) posted at 11:13 AM on Thursday, July 15th, 2021

I'm a new BH here and just discovered this thread. Dday was about a month ago.

My questions are: to the waywards, especially those who successfully reconciled but who said "i love you" numerous times to AP and loved their AP, and then after dday still had feelings for AP, how did your BS get over that? And how on earth did reconciliation happen in light of this brutal fact that you loved another person, probably even more than you ever loved bs in your own marriage?

ETA: When you planned to leave your BS, why did you, after dday suddenly, apparently, change that plan? Acting as if you didn't plan to leave them all along?

[This message edited by Confusedmd at 5:18 AM, July 15th (Thursday)]

posts: 28   ·   registered: May. 16th, 2021
id 8675734
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MrsWalloped ( member #62313) posted at 2:13 PM on Thursday, July 15th, 2021

Hi Confusedmd.

I'm so sorry you are here.

My questions are: to the waywards, especially those who successfully reconciled but who said "i love you" numerous times to AP and loved their AP, and then after dday still had feelings for AP, how did your BS get over that? And how on earth did reconciliation happen in light of this brutal fact that you loved another person, probably even more than you ever loved bs in your own marriage?

That's more of a question for BS's TBH and you may get better responses in the Reconciliation thread. But basically it takes time, commitment and work by the WS. Now I didn't love the AP "even more than you ever loved BS" but the nuances didn't matter to my BH. I think what helped him was my being honest, transparent, the polygraph I took, and the work I did after DDay and in the years since. I'm not patting myself on the back here. But reinforcement of my love and commitment to my BH, working on myself, sharing the real me and making myself vulnerable to him all helped I think. My BH is an analytical guy. He's patient. He waited and watched and he thankfully decided that he wanted to R with me. But that's just my personal view and my personal situation. Try the R Forum as well.

ETA: When you planned to leave your BS, why did you, after dday suddenly, apparently, change that plan? Acting as if you didn't plan to leave them all along?

Are you speaking from your own experience? Is your question about a WS who said they wanted to leave and then after DDay they changed their mind and pretended they never said it? Or are you just assuming that someone who had an affair that automatically means they wanted to leave? Because that is not necessarily true. I never planned on leaving my BH. And I wasn't acting when that came up after DDay. Not every A is an exit A.

Me: WW 47
My BH: Walloped 48
A: 3/15 - 8/15 (2 month EA, turned into 3 month PA)
DDay: 8/3/15
In R

posts: 699   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2018
id 8675763
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MrsWalloped ( member #62313) posted at 2:26 PM on Thursday, July 15th, 2021

Hi LadyG.

So, I think that lust for the AP or someone like the AP never ever goes away. WS was Watching porn and seeking out particular porn that reminded him of the AP.

Does the WS ever stop lusting after it?

I wasn't sure how to address your question because I was never "in lust" with the AP. Obviously we had sex, but sex wasn't the driving force and lust wasn't the main thing.

But still, from what I've read here over the years, the answer can be yes and in many cases is. If the WS is remorseful and truly understands and internalizes the pain he or she inflicted on the BS, then that lust doesn't last. Quite the opposite actually. It turns to disgust, feelings of shame, repulsion, basically lots of feelings and none of them lust. IMO, a WS who really understands the damage they did cannot look at the AP and still lust after him or her.

I'm sorry that your WS was doing that. How do you know that he was seeking out porn specifically because it reminded him of the AP? Or was it that the the porn resembled the AP so you're making the connection? It could be he has a fantasy type and he chose the AP because it fit that fantasy type. Like if he had a thing for redheads and you are a brunette and he chose the AP because she's a redhead and is looking at porn with redheads, it may not be seeking out a copy of the AP because he's thinking of the AP. Does that make sense? But regardless, is porn usage okay for you? Because if it's triggery, and it sounds like it is, then that should be a big no-no. Frankly, on his own, whether you're okay with the porn watching or not, should be a nonstarter, especially porn that resembles the AP in any way.

Me: WW 47
My BH: Walloped 48
A: 3/15 - 8/15 (2 month EA, turned into 3 month PA)
DDay: 8/3/15
In R

posts: 699   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2018
id 8675765
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Confusedmd ( new member #78802) posted at 4:05 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

Thanks mrswalloped.

The reason I asked the first 2 questions here is because I asked my WW similar questions. She said she would win me back no matter the cost. I asked her how she could win me back in light of the things she's done and felt during the affair? How could she ever help me to accept the things that happened? What could she even do that would make up for her betrayal? Are there even words/actions that exist that could make me heal from this? She can't answer those questions, only that she would try with all her might until she dies to give me happiness that would blow the pain of the affiar away- a very general and frankly, a cowardly and unrealistic response.

The third question I asked because her AP was regularly bringing up the idea of her leaving me for him (as per the emails). She would either ignore this or move on to another subject, but never did explicitly shut it down. Now, she says she never once wanted or planned to leave me. But for me, not shutting it down was showing that she at least toyed with the idea of leaving me for AP. So now, I wanted to know from the WS here who planned to leave their BS, or even attempted to leave for AP after dday, why are you now so desperate to have your BS back? It just blows my mind.

posts: 28   ·   registered: May. 16th, 2021
id 8676110
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ff4152 ( member #55404) posted at 11:39 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

ConfusedMD

If I understand your timeline correctly, you’ve been married for 2 years and your wife had a 4 year A? So that would mean she was cheating before you got married. I guess I’m trying to understand what you’re trying to save.

Personally I feel that your wife is only promising you the world because her AP dumped her. No I cannot know what’s in her heart and mind as to why she didn’t shut down his talk of her leaving you. Perhaps she was working herself up to it, maybe she really didn’t intend to leave. No one will ever know for certain and she will certainly never fess up if she intended to go.

If she cheated this early in your marriage, IMO you’re always going to be looking over your shoulder. Cheating at any time is bad enough, but doing it before and after marriage is a special kind of fucked up.

Me -FWS

posts: 1865   ·   registered: Sep. 30th, 2016
id 8676289
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Felix12306 ( member #78827) posted at 5:46 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

Did any of you ever think about or realize the trauma and how detrimental this would be to your partner during your affair?

BS Together for 15 years, married for 11. Dd 1/28/21 after a 44-day affair, only last week of affair was physical but didn't find that out until 6/18/21.

posts: 140   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2021
id 8676743
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foreverlabeled ( member #52070) posted at 7:59 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

Did any of you ever think about or realize the trauma and how detrimental this would be to your partner during your affair?

Unfortunately no. I obviously knew there would be consequences and that it would hurt on some level. But traumatizing? Never once crossed my mind it would scale on that level.

I had zero experience with infidelity and the impact it has on one's life. It was quite a shock to me to witness the damage I caused.

Having gone through this I often wonder if I had just an inkling of the devastation, would I have still chosen to cheat? I'm not so sure I would have. I deeply regret it and will always be disappointed in myself for hurting someone the way I did.

33 divorced Madhatter
Time is no ones friend, nor their enemy. It moves forward at its own fixed pace, careless of our wants to speed it or slow it.

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forgettableDad ( member #72192) posted at 11:10 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

Did any of you ever think about or realize the trauma and how detrimental this would be to your partner during your affair?

No. I was too involved in living out my own trauma to be able to care or show empathy to my wife's pain.

posts: 270   ·   registered: Dec. 1st, 2019
id 8676847
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Darkness Falls ( member #27879) posted at 2:06 AM on Tuesday, July 20th, 2021

Did any of you ever think about or realize the trauma and how detrimental this would be to your partner during your affair?

No. I was expecting him to be extremely pissed off—the stereotypical “guy” reaction of anger at someone encroaching on the cliche of “his territory”. What I did not expect was how devastated with hurt he was.

WS - remarried to BH but not in R

D-day 2010

posts: 6316   ·   registered: Mar. 8th, 2010   ·   location: USA
id 8676903
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Thumos ( member #69668) posted at 11:23 PM on Thursday, July 22nd, 2021

Empathy and a true unde3rstanding of what we did to our BS can only come after time, and time spent really thinking things through and focusing on the BS, at that. It's definitely not something that happens right after DDay.

I've been thinking about this aspect a lot lately. My WW has made a strenuous effort the past three years or so to be the "perfect wife." Some would describe her behaviors as "Stepford wife" doing constant acts of service, providing sex on a never-ending tap, showering me with gifts and affection, indulging my hobbies, catering to my extended family, taking on household duties and more.

It's not that I don't appreciate it, or even value it. Of course I do. But it's HOW it came about that gnaws at me. It's the price that was paid. The price seems too high. And that exorbitant price seems to give the whole thing an air of being counterfeit, of being less than genuine.

I don't know if that's fair or makes sense. Does it make sense?

And when I measure it against her pattern of a lack of real transparency (destroying evidence, refusing me access to texts, refusing to write a timeline for three years, failing her polygraph) that conflicts with the "perfect wife" treatment (which I admit has been pretty consistent) I find myself deeply ambivalent.

I don't know how to square it or really feel about it.

And then there's the aspect you hit on MrsWalloped, that a WW/WS is really not thinking much about their BH/BS wellbeing -- certainly not before D-Day, but even for a long time after D-Day.

My WW followed this pattern for the first year.

Even six months after D-Day she was telling me the affair was "private." In that first year she said awful things, such as that I was "sexually immature" when I expressed my horror at her explanation that sex with her AP was "meaningless" and "that's your problem" when I expressed sadness that she was my one and only. She tries to write those things off as "heat of the moment" now, things she didn't really mean to say. Usually she'll preface this by saying that from her point of view she only said these things out of frustration after long hours of discussions during which I questioned her. My reaction is "well too bad." And she doesn't seem to understand how heavy these things weigh on my mind, after already having been traumatized and betrayed by her with the original sin.

It seems pretty clear to me that as much as she has tried to work on empathy, like many other WW's she just doesn't "get it." I'm wondering if she ever will. It's really like men are from Mars, women are from Venus, and we live in two completely different emotional universes.

I guess my question of the day is, if we waited, what really makes it worth it to have to wade through all that nonsense and wait around for a WW to figure themselves out? Why should we have to wait?

I know the answer is "you don't have to do anything." I get that.

But a lot of BS find themselves at this juncture a few years out from DDay where we are scratching our heads wondering why a WS took so long, and that waiting brought with it a whole new level of toxic garbage (in addition to the initial anxiety and trauma while the affair was going on, the psychological damage of gaslighting, the post DDay denialism and subterfuge and stonewalling, etc).

I guess I'm asking whether a BH is just better off extricating themselves from all of it and moving on with a different life.

[This message edited by Thumos at 5:32 PM, July 22nd (Thursday)]

"True character is revealed in the choices a human being makes under pressure. The greater the pressure, the deeper the revelation, the truer the choice to the character's essential nature."

BH: 50, WW: 49 Wed: Feb.'96 DDAY1: 12.20.16 DDAY2: 12.23.19

posts: 4337   ·   registered: Feb. 5th, 2019   ·   location: UNITED STATES
id 8677605
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Felix12306 ( member #78827) posted at 5:41 AM on Friday, July 23rd, 2021

Did you realize you were blame shifting, gaslighting, or minimizing if you were one to do that? Was wondering if that's something people are fully aware of doing? And if not at what point did you figure it out? Did you realize it was in fact an issue?

BS Together for 15 years, married for 11. Dd 1/28/21 after a 44-day affair, only last week of affair was physical but didn't find that out until 6/18/21.

posts: 140   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2021
id 8677684
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forgettableDad ( member #72192) posted at 12:35 PM on Friday, July 23rd, 2021

I guess I'm asking whether a BH is just better off extricating themselves from all of it and moving on with a different life.

The only answer to that is another question. Are you better off?

There's no single answer that will satisfy someone that doesn't know what they want to do. You'll have to decide whether you want to trust your wife, she'll have to decide whether she wants to be trusted by you. And you both will have to decide, together, to work hard and rebuild a relationship.

For me and my wife reconciliation was a single decision in time. Then a lot of work from my side to heal and be trustworthy and from her side to heal and be trustful. And now we're working on our relationship like any other couple should do - with infidelity as one of the wounds in our shared past. Life is hard. There's no guarantee that any other relationship will satisfy you. Only you can reach satisfaction.

My wife said to me the other day (literally the other day) that the reason she's decided to stay and give me another chance is because she wants to be with me. And to be honest, the reason I'm with her is because I want to be with her. I don't owe her allegiance nor she to me. We're in a relationship, working together, because we've decided together to be together.

What do you want to do?

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MrsWalloped ( member #62313) posted at 2:20 PM on Friday, July 23rd, 2021

Hi Thumos.

I've been thinking about this aspect a lot lately. My WW has made a strenuous effort the past three years or so to be the "perfect wife." Some would describe her behaviors as "Stepford wife" doing constant acts of service, providing sex on a never-ending tap, showering me with gifts and affection, indulging my hobbies, catering to my extended family, taking on household duties and more.

The price seems too high. And that exorbitant price seems to give the whole thing an air of being counterfeit, of being less than genuine.

I don't know if that's fair or makes sense. Does it make sense?

The price is too high. Of course it is. And it makes total sense. Because if all of that didn't happen before the A, then it's now only a result of the A. But that doesn't mean it isn't genuine. It's a complete picture the BS needs to look at. Not just acts of service, or sex. What is the WS working on? How are they living? You could argue that while it's too late because the WS had an A already and it may seem disingenuous and hard to believe, all of those things you describe your WW doing is because she loves you and wants to be married to you. Bribery? Yeah, I guess you can look at it that way. But it takes a lot for a WS to go through that, knowing how it's viewed, yet be consistent in working on themselves, and their relationship. I think it was the day in and day out aspect that in some way showed my BH that it was in fact genuine even though the genesis of it was the A and the price was way too high.

And when I measure it against her pattern of a lack of real transparency (destroying evidence, refusing me access to texts, refusing to write a timeline for three years, failing her polygraph) that conflicts with the "perfect wife" treatment (which I admit has been pretty consistent) I find myself deeply ambivalent.

You should. How has she been since? Because I see self-preservation at all costs. I think in some ways my BH did me a favor by "forcing" me to air out everything right away or we would D. He made it sound like we would D anyway and all I could think of is that I lost everything. It was a dark place to be (not comparing to his, which was worse in many ways). But it stopped a lot of the trying to make myself look better. There was no looking better.

It seems pretty clear to me that as much as she has tried to work on empathy, like many other WW's she just doesn't "get it." I'm wondering if she ever will. It's really like men are from Mars, women are from Venus, and we live in two completely different emotional universes.

That is a problem you need to figure out. What was she look pre-A? Did something switch or was it always there in the background and you just didn't notice or care?

I guess my question of the day is, if we waited, what really makes it worth it to have to wade through all that nonsense and wait around for a WW to figure themselves out? Why should we have to wait?

I know the answer is "you don't have to do anything." I get that.

Yep.

But a lot of BS find themselves at this juncture a few years out from DDay where we are scratching our heads wondering why a WS took so long, and that waiting brought with it a whole new level of toxic garbage (in addition to the initial anxiety and trauma while the affair was going on, the psychological damage of gaslighting, the post DDay denialism and subterfuge and stonewalling, etc).

I guess I'm asking whether a BH is just better off extricating themselves from all of it and moving on with a different life.

Maybe. There is no avoiding pain after this IMO. Just a different kind. Although, maybe a clean and quick break takes you away from the source of the pain immediately. But unless you manage and deal with that pain, it sits with you regardless of whether you D. Many BS's do move on. They're either not interested in going through it all, have no desire to or the pain, injustice, hurt, betrayal is just too much and is a dealbreaker as in truth all A's are. And that's all normal and I'd guess common. There are those who choose to stay for various reasons. Some reasons are good ones. Others are less so. And a lot depends on the WS. I don't know that one way the BH is better off more than the other. It depends, which stinks as an answer. My BH would say he is better off for having stayed. Others would say otherwise. Only you can answer that one.

Me: WW 47
My BH: Walloped 48
A: 3/15 - 8/15 (2 month EA, turned into 3 month PA)
DDay: 8/3/15
In R

posts: 699   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2018
id 8677781
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Dude67 ( member #75700) posted at 3:54 PM on Friday, July 23rd, 2021

Mrs Walloped - how did your husband get to the point of final healing? I remember you saying that it took 7 months for him to get to the point of being able to have sex with you again, then divorce became a reality at year two, then he got COVID and that, combined with what you surmise was his mental state due to fallout from the Affair, caused him to think to himself what has happened to my life...

I was struck how you had said that after his anger had subsided, and you were in R, it was his sense of injustice that really affected him the most, part of that being that you were both your first and only's, then after the A that only pertained to him. How did your husband resolve all of this in order to heal? I think he got to this point at year 6 or 7, a long time post A to effectively heal. You said he could never bring himself to forgive you, but he has obviously gotten to a point of healing. Was it simply acceptance on his part? Where is his mind at currently, where he can be at peace with himself and that you both have restored your marriage to a good place where you are both content?

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id 8677811
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MrsWalloped ( member #62313) posted at 5:29 PM on Friday, July 23rd, 2021

Dude67,

I've always viewed this thread as a way BS's can ask questions about their own situation or about WS's in general as a way to help them process, heal, learn and grow. And that is why I've generally been pretty open here.

What I am trying to say is that I don't really mind answering personal questions, but I think that it would be a threadjack to the purpose of this thread.

So, I'll be very brief (for me).

How did your husband resolve all of this in order to heal? I think he got to this point at year 6 or 7, a long time post A to effectively heal. You said he could never bring himself to forgive you, but he has obviously gotten to a point of healing. Was it simply acceptance on his part? Where is his mind at currently, where he can be at peace with himself and that you both have restored your marriage to a good place where you are both content?

Just a point on timing, DDay was August 2015 so the 6th antiversary is coming up.

Anyway, a lot of this is personal to me and us so sorry about what I don't share. Healing and R are two different things. Healing is a process. just like R is a process. Where we are in our M is not necessarily lock step with where he is with healing. As far as acceptance? No. He refused to accept it and give it legitimacy. Adaptation. He learned to adapt to the reality of what I did and what it meant for him and for us. I know that sounds like semantics but it means something to him and to me. But he needed help to get there. We are super fortunate that we have the coolest and nicest and most beautiful aunt here on SI and she helped my husband and us more than she could ever know. So how he got the place where he is now and where we are now together in our M has a lot to do with her. Forgiveness? I honestly don't think about it much and I've never asked for it. Forgiving myself is a separate thing and that's harder to do and totally separate from whether he forgives me. That's something I work on as a way to be a healthier person. But our M and our lives are what they are and I do what I do for him, for me, and in our M without looking for forgiveness. He could never give it to me and it wouldn't change a thing in how I act or what I do. And if he does ever say that to me, it'll make me happy because of what it means for him and his own mindset and happiness. Content? We are much more than content. We are both happy and we love each other and have a beautiful M. It has it's ups and downs and issues like any other. And the stain on our M is there and knowing I put it there is something we both have to live with. But it's our M and we are together and that's what matters.

I know I didn't give you much, but as I said, some of that is personal and it's not for me to share. Sorry.

[This message edited by MrsWalloped at 11:30 AM, July 23rd (Friday)]

Me: WW 47
My BH: Walloped 48
A: 3/15 - 8/15 (2 month EA, turned into 3 month PA)
DDay: 8/3/15
In R

posts: 699   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2018
id 8677936
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foreverlabeled ( member #52070) posted at 6:39 PM on Friday, July 23rd, 2021

Thumos, it seems like to me that your WW is using this Stepford wife as a form of rugsweeping. I imagine she hopes this will distract you until enough time passes and her infidelity is so far behind you that it should be a non issue. Honesty, I wouldn't be surprised if not too far in the future she exhausts herself and beings saying things like "that was such a long time ago" and "get over it".

Because as you said,

her pattern of a lack of real transparency (destroying evidence, refusing me access to texts, refusing to write a timeline for three years, failing her polygraph)

 all of this contradicts whatever actions are taking place, again, to distract you.

I don't agree with the sentiment that WSs take a long time to get on their BSs level and show empathy and understanding. It doesn't have to be that way, WSs choose it and they will keep choosing it. As long as they want to and/or as long they can get away with it.

Felix,

Did you realize you were blame shifting, gaslighting, or minimizing if you were one to do that? Was wondering if that's something people are fully aware of doing? And if not at what point did you figure it out? Did you realize it was in fact an issue?

jeez, so within the last week I stumbled upon my very first post here on SI. I was in my email looking for an article I remembered sending myself way back when so I typed infidelity into my email search... anyway I must've turned the option off after that post to have all the responses emailed. Whelp, I contemplated all of 3 seconds to read it or not. I read it. Talk about cringe worthy. I was 3 days past dday, BUT! In that post I asked if I was placing blame on BH. I really really wanted to know. And, of course I was. I think I knew that, actually I KNOW I did. But I just had to be sure

And as far as minimizing, of course we are aware, we are trying to cover our ass.

33 divorced Madhatter
Time is no ones friend, nor their enemy. It moves forward at its own fixed pace, careless of our wants to speed it or slow it.

posts: 2523   ·   registered: Mar. 1st, 2016   ·   location: southeast
id 8677952
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