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Newest Member: Tortex

Reconciliation :
Saying one thing and then another still a year post Dday

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DaddyDom ( member #56960) posted at 8:53 PM on Tuesday, June 14th, 2022

WS here...

Your wife is still not "out of the fog" yet IMO.

As a firm rule, people who have dignity, self-respect, healthy boundaries and self-love do not have affairs, not only because of what it would do to others, but also because they would never lower themselves to do such a disgusting and destructive thing in the first place. Likewise, people with those same qualities also do not get (knowingly) involved with married people.

As a WS begins to "do the work" of going to IC/MC and digging deeper into their "whys", they should, over time, start to change from having a "cheater mindset" (no dignity or self-love/respect and unhealthy or missing boundaries) to that of a healthy and authentic person, someone who can own their bad choices and decisions, and who can empathize with others.

It is not at all unusual for a WS to "miss" the AP early on, in much the same way that an abused person may still love their abuser after leaving them. Over time however, the "brainwashing" starts to fade, and as reality sets in, the abused person starts to see the abuser for who they really were, and see themselves for who they really are as well. And in most cases, once the victim realizes that loved a person who never actually loved or respected them back, the "love" fades quickly and reality sets in. When the truth sets in, they begin to despise the abuser, and may despise themselves for not being stronger, etc.

This is what should happen to the WS. If they have truly done the work and learned to rebuild their dignity and self-worth, then they should be looking back at the AP for who they were. Disgusting people who were incapable of love just as much as your WS was/is. Someone they used to get what they needed at the time, and who used them back in the very same way. Someone you would never marry, let-alone date, in a million years.

If your wife still pines for the AP, then IMO, she's still broken. She still can't love herself enough to not miss the attention she got from them. And if she is not capable of loving or respecting herself enough to see the AP for who they are, then she certainly cannot love or respect you, not really, not in a healthy or meaningful way.

I don't say any of this to hurt you or discourage you from remaining in R. It took me YEARS to get my head out of my ass. Rather, it is my hope that you might be able to see your wife through the lens of "being a broken person" as opposed to the lens of "she loves someone else". She doesn't love anyone, she is not capable, at the moment. That doesn't mean that she DOES NOT love you to whatever degree she is capable of however, and I think that's important to keep in mind.

Think of it this way. I cannot lift 100lbs over my head. I'm too weak. But if I worked out every day, in time, I'd be able to lift it easily. In that same way, your wife cannot love others right now, she lacks the "strength" (self-love). But that can be remedied. If she does the work, then her ability to love you, herself and others, can return. It just takes a TON of hard work, bravery and dedication (and a willingness to fail A LOT and yet keep trying). But it can be done.

Me: WS
BS: ISurvivedSoFar
D-Day Nov '16
Status: Reconciling
"I am floored by the amount of grace and love she has shown me in choosing to stay and fight for our marriage. I took everything from her, and yet she chose to forgive me."

posts: 1299   ·   registered: Jan. 18th, 2017
id 8740211
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The1stWife ( member #58832) posted at 9:49 PM on Tuesday, June 14th, 2022

Your wife can only make you feel secure in your marriage to a certain point.

The rest of your safety and security comes from you.

I never thought I would ever leave my H. I never thought I would ever have to think that way. Until I did. 25 years if a good marriage being tossed aside for his mid life crisis OW.

I now have more confidence in myself b/c I survived his affair. I faced it head on. And I would do that again if I had to.

My strength comes from knowing I will survive and thrive no matter what.

Your life is not about your marriage anymore. Those days are in the past. Your life should be about YOU and your happiness and your happy marriage is just an added bonus.

That is the fall out from being a betrayed. At least it was for me. My H is not my priority. I am.

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 12289   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8740221
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This0is0Fine ( member #72277) posted at 10:25 PM on Tuesday, June 14th, 2022

Without pulling some specific quotes out from what you are posting here, it seems like you are struggling primarily with two main things.

1) Black and white thinking about the nature of the A and her feelings towards it. You see it as either having to be positive or negative experience for your WW. Not a mixture of both, and a mixture that could change with time.

2) Living with uncertainty. Your sense of safety and a security has been shattered. The reality is that the sort of 100% certainty you felt is gone, no matter how much work you or your wife does. It's the death of naivete.

I can give you my experience on these topics. The first is a tough one to swallow (the shit sandwich), but of course the affair was fun at the time, and of course it had a natural draw that wasn't even a competition with the M. The M is not illicit. The M has to deal with reality, the A doesn't. She never had to deal with laundry, or logistics, or budgets. So while the experience could have been fleetingly positive, and even after DDay and even after dealing with the aftermath, there is no reason to believe that all memories of the A are now going to be negative and tainted. I think the M is of the same nature as it relates to the memories, especially at the time of the A. Some of your memories during the A are likely now tainted, but it's possible you still have some experiences that were extremely positive during the A. I know I do. My wife was completely there for me as my father passed away during the A.

The second one is a little different. It doesn't relate the the "reality of your wife's feelings during the A" but to how you feel now. You don't know for sure she won't cheat again. You don't know for sure she won't lie to you again in general. She might. It would be foolish to think otherwise. What you have to be comfortable with is that if she does cross any boundaries again you are out the door no questions asked. The other thing that I have gotten comfortable with is that I don't really make promises to her about things like "forever". Any day I could wake up and decide to leave to. You don't have to make R a permanent committed decision. It's a process that you are willing to engage in, but at any moment you can decide it isn't working. For me, having a solid exit strategy and adding my own ability to insert uncertainty that I'm in charge of makes it easy enough to live with the uncertainty my wife introduces to the M. I do feel safe, but I feel safe enough, not completely safe like I did before.

Different people have different ethical systems with different levels of rigidity. Different people can live with different amounts of uncertainty. If you find yourself in a "black and white" way of thinking and unwilling to live with residual uncertainty, you are better off not working toward R. As we often say around here, maybe the A is just a dealbreaker for you, and that's ok.

[This message edited by This0is0Fine at 10:26 PM, Tuesday, June 14th]

Love is not a measure of capacity for pain you are willing to endure for your partner.

posts: 2021   ·   registered: Dec. 11th, 2019
id 8740227
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Jorge ( member #61424) posted at 8:02 AM on Wednesday, June 15th, 2022

She doesn't want to say/admit it. You don't want to hear/believe it. All other talk are ways to work circular those two things. You're both in the same boat and neither want to be in it.

posts: 718   ·   registered: Nov. 14th, 2017   ·   location: Pennsylvania
id 8740288
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M1965 ( member #57009) posted at 8:00 PM on Wednesday, June 15th, 2022

p12241342,

The problem that has prevented any progress being made is your wife's avoidance of examining or owning her feelings and actions. In another post, you said she refused to post here because your situation is unique (when it is anything but), and she has refused multiple requests to go to IC because she knows all the answers (without hearing a single question from an IC). And because she refuses to deal with any of her issues, it leaves you second-guessing and projecting, with her either agreeing or denying. And then, afterwards, she qualifies her answers, or contradicts them. It must feel like you are firing shots into the dark, and even when you think you have hit something, it turns out you have missed.

If ever a person was crying out for the attention of a good IC, it is your wife. In your place, I would feel very tempted to ask her, "If you know all the answers, there is no reason to be scared of IC. So why won't you go? And how can you be sure you won't benefit from it when you have never been?" If she thinks her answers are so unpalatable that she does not know how to express them, that is exactly where an IC can dig into them, pull them apart, and provide insight and understanding.

It sounds like she is stonewalling, and in her answers, she is trying to convince herself as much as she is trying to convince you. That does not mean that your worst fears or worst case scenarios are going to come true; it means that she has issues she would rather avoid than face. And that refusal is keeping both of you spinning your wheels.

Neither of you has reached a point that feels like the truth has come out, and until that happens, it is hard to rebuild on anything that feels like a solid foundation. I think you have had some really great responses and insights in this thread, and for the sake of both of you, it may be time to tell her that nothing is going to change or improve until she goes to an IC and starts working on herself. It has been a year now, and you are basically still at square one. That does not mean all is lost; it just means that nothing will progress until she opens up, if not to you, then to an IC.

[This message edited by M1965 at 8:02 PM, Wednesday, June 15th]

posts: 1232   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2017   ·   location: South East of England
id 8740375
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Hannah47 ( new member #80116) posted at 1:56 AM on Thursday, June 16th, 2022

@p12241342
Mate, I'm sorry that I don’t have advice for you. Just wanted to say that I can relate to pretty much everything you wrote, and it has been 5 years since DDay for me. I’m not saying it will be the same for you, just that it is possible you will not find your peace in the upcoming years. Think about that. So, this is just a friendly note of caution, to mentally prepare yourself, since you have decided to stay in the marriage.

I often think that i have said the same thing on this forum so many times in different ways that people will just feel I'm whining. But these are true feelings that mean something to me. Im dying inside and to everyone else things are fine, but I'm stuck.


You did, but don’t worry about how you sound. The pain and struggles you are going through are real and I’m sure everyone here respects that. Writing helps to organize your thoughts, so, write about it in hundred different ways if you want to. I hope you will find your peace soon.

posts: 39   ·   registered: Mar. 21st, 2022
id 8740406
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Buster123 ( member #65551) posted at 6:22 AM on Friday, June 17th, 2022

Based on what you posted to me it's evident she's not being honest with you (deep down I think you know this), it sounds like she may still be pining for him as possibly "the one who got away", she may feel guilty but that doesn't mean she's honest, and without honesty a successful R is basically impossible. Has she written a complete timeline of the A ? how about a polygraph with a few questions such as : Were you in love with AP ? were/are you planning or considering to leave me for AP? Was this your only A ? Are you still lying about something ?

[This message edited by Buster123 at 6:23 AM, Friday, June 17th]

posts: 2611   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018
id 8740560
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 12:58 PM on Saturday, June 18th, 2022

I don't know what i can do.

You can leave. I know you don't want to, that you probably don't believe you're even capable of it, because you feel attached to her and your self-esteem is low, but you can leave. You can walk away from being miserable, and towards a life without a person who cheats on you, exposes you to the risk of STDs, and pines for another man. There are a lot of good women out there who would like to get involved with a loving, faithful man, and who will be loving and faithful in return.

You might want to read Cheating in a Nutshell by Tamara and Wayne Mitchell to get a better understanding of the situation you are in.

Alternatively, or in addition, you might want to get individual counseling for yourself, with a goal of increasing your self-esteem and independence, so you don't have to stay emotionally dependent on a person who has abused you by cheating and is still not being supportive to you now.

posts: 454   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8740810
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CoderMom ( member #66033) posted at 4:25 AM on Friday, July 1st, 2022

You are definitely a person who has put in the work. Well said. Best wishes to you on your journey.

posts: 299   ·   registered: Aug. 31st, 2018
id 8742835
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