There came a time to equal up the M. If there are rules of R then they apply to both of us equally. I can go through her electronic devices anytime I want and she can do the same. If I have any interaction with a woman that’s outside the norm, it’s full disclosure. Same with her, she let’s me know when creeps contact her on SM.
We are doing the full disclosure thing to each other now, and I asked H about whether or not he has blocked J. He hasn’t, but said he would think about it and let me know what he decides since it bothered me. Which is all good. He showed understanding for how I feel about the situation and compared it back to how he feels about my work. I clarified with him that the 2 are not the same. He said the emotions are, but I pointed out that the substance of the matters are not. He didn’t make any indication of whether he agreed to that, but he did feel heard about how he feels. All good.
The question I have is, area the two matters- me going to work in the same building (HUGE building with labs away from the offices where I sit), the same?
What was discouraging about the conversation was his justifications for continuing to talk to and help her out. She wanted a power cord for a laptop so she can have one at home. Why she can’t do what everyone else does and cart it back and forth in her work bag… ?? He has an extra. He’s going into work today (on a day he doesn’t have to- said there was no one in the office) so he can go to lunch with a mutual friend of J to hand off the power cord. I asked him, "Why do YOU have to give HER the power cord?" He said he had an extra and wanted to give it to her since he had an extra. I said, "She can buy herself purses every week. She can buy herself her own power cord." He came back with, "to get rid of it out of our house." To which I told him, "We can just throw it out you know." H got quiet after that…
Either way, he’s protecting the relationship. And he’s going in on a day when we were considering doing an art fair together. AND he still feels like I don’t plan or want to do things with him since I decided to go w or w/o him Saturday morning, maybe with one of my girlfriends. He is welcome to his feelings. I am not accepting the guilt I feel when he brings up how much he just wants to hang out with me… and then comes up with many reasons not to.
I know you said you're dropping the 180 are you sure about that? Idk girl, you may need it if he's not going to stop, if he's not going to take the work seriously. How else are you going to stay sane?
I’m not doing a 180 as I do want to continue working on R with him. I am, however, slowing down sexual/romantic side of things to focus on our companionship and friendship. I feel safe being his friend and connecting to him on a "dating" level with affection and light touching. While he’s still communicating with J, I’m not doing certain things like sending him sexy pics of myself (I’m losing weight again, YAY!) or having sex with him. I want to hang out with him, I want to demonstrate and build trust, but I will not compete with J for his attention and I won’t be putting up with him bantering with a younger woman he has compared me negatively to (in subtle ways like, "I like J so much because she’s into fashion like me, I’m so lonely since I can’t share that with you" Even though I’ve taken an interest and bought new clothes that interest him… OH! And the lovely, "I love the perfume J wears! I want to go to LV store and figure out which one it is so you can get some!!" EW. Just fucking EW ). H has apologized once I explained to him how intimate a thing a woman's perfume is and how I equate smelling a person to having your nose up their shoulder and on their neck. J takes whore baths in it, so you can smell her coming and going. (Yeah yeah I'm talking about her like that and I call my self a Christian... )
Sorry, but she finds him attractive and is using flying monkeys to keep him interested. He finds her attractive too and an escape from times when I have to go into work. Not having sex with someone who thinks like that. That’s wayward 101 and yeah… ew. I know it because I lived it. At this point, it’s not hypocritical of me to say, "This is looking like how I was during my affair, and I won’t accept it from you."
Because what you are living is crazy making material. Have you read 'codependency no more'? It was fantastic, and there should be an ICR thread on codependency. For now and having been in eerily similar shoes, that may be a great starting point for you.
I’ve read CoDNM (GREAT BOOK) and I’ve been re-listening to podcasts on it. It’s a good refresher- I’ve been engaging in codependent behavior lately (AGAIN) in an attempt to control the outcome. That’s why the art fair with one of my friends (who may not be able to go after all- her doggers is dying, SO SAD ) is so important to me this weekend. It’s a way for me to regain an identity for myself, pursue an interest and break out of the cycle.
H is invited, but he feels like a 2nd choice because I decided to go for myself w/ my buddy first and I’ll go anyway, with or without anyone else. I also don’t want the kids along- they’ll be hot and uncomfortable and miserable. I want to enjoy this. Love my kids… but sometimes mommy needs a break.
I wanted to go with H today, and he wanted to tie it to a home audio store he’d like to visit, but the time was too tight. We had a good convo around my guilt at doing things for myself and having him do them for/with me (art fair is enjoyable, but really not his bag). H is improving in this, communicating his sadness at our lack of companionship. HOWEVER, 1-2 days after doing something "nice" for me, there’s the old favorite, "I do so much for everyone else, I just want someone to take care of me!!!" It’s to the point that I am associating good times for myself with H’s unhappiness and dissatisfaction. I expressed that to him this morning and he seemed to understand. All good. I gave him credit for improving. I am also making plenty of bids for his company, wanting to watch a show together, snuggle on Friday, inviting him to the art fair on Saturday and getting a bday party with his fam together for Sunday.
But I’m also doing this for me. H is concerned that since my energy levels are low in the evening that there won’t be any energy left for him. My energy is lower in the evening. It’s also a drag on me to care for everyone all day and end up wiped out at the end of the day. Having this pleasurable time with a friend at an art fair I love will recharge me. H wants to recharge with me too. All good. Both can co-exist!
H points out that his outings with friends (bars on Friday) are a coping mechanism because he wants me first. I wish he could work on seeing his outings with friends as an enrichment to his life in addition to our M, not as a substitute. His dad really didn’t do much for himself and is depressed and enmeshed with his anxious controlling mom. He thinks it’s normal for married couples to do EVERYTHING TOGETHER. My fam did NOTHING together. The extremes are bad, but there’s good in the middle.
Again, this is work he needs to do, but isn’t.
But it takes 2 to recover, repair, and reconcile. You can't do that alone, and you most certainly cannot do it in the state your M is currently in. Its very hard to fight fair as MHs and your H seems very much like my ex, showing zero remorse and the whole tit for tat.
It’s tough because again, I pointed out this morning that the relationship with J is looking like a duck, walking like a duck and quacking like a duck. H doesn’t see it as an EA and certainly doesn’t see it as bad as my inappropriate friendships with co-workers (past oversharing and bitching about H, but no lovey dovey stuff- a TON of "poor me." PITY PARTY YUCK). H has a history of pining after other women and comparing me negatively and wanting me to be more like other women. He says that his relationship with J is not an affair because he doesn’t want to leave me or sleep with her. Yeah, he wants to stay with me and sleep with me and will be happier with me if I’m more like HER. Really? Yah, it makes it ok then. I just have to be more like J or Deliah or all the other women he liked and then he’ll want to be with me and sleep with me more… if it’s not an A, it’s screwed up thinking and incredibly demoralizing and painful to me.
Which is why I’m starting to focus on my own interests, "dating" companionship with H and backing off on pushing things to "make him happy" and "take care of him." I’ll arrange things and do things for him he says he wants, but if he puts up resistance or backs out, I’m not responsible for his unhappiness.
so long as you stay employed at your current job, no matter the circumstances and actions you took, your H is always going to hang it over your head and use it as an excuse to do whatever he wants.
Yes, yes he is. Shout out to Chamomile on this one. I HAVE gone NC and have pushed the thing at HR as far as I can to ensure NC at work. I’ve also minimized the amount of time on campus and do things (supplier lunches and meetings) off site as much as possible. I also avoid travel for work (gave up a conference in Barcelona where I would be presenting my pet project for H’s comfort ). So, yeah, I’m staying at the job and demonstrating trustworthiness and accommodation an as much sensitivity as I can without actually quitting.
To me, it’s not something I’m going to change. It’s triggering to many BS’s out there because that’s standard issue advice. At this point, as Tanner put it, we are working on R and to me, this is something I will resent H for and poison my view of him if I give it up. This job isn’t just a job. It’s a passion of mine. This is sounding entitled and selfish, but there it is.
If H’s relationship with J isn’t just a "friendship" but a passion, then H can make a decision for himself whether or not to keep pursuing the "relationship." I just refuse to compete with her for his passion. Like, really, you want an M with me, but have a passion (or at least strong liking) for another woman? I don't go to work to see my exAP!!!! Work is NOT ABOUT AP. The relationship with J is about a RELATIONSHIP WITH ANOTHER WOMAN WHO DOESNT KNOW ME AND IS NOT A FRIEND OF OUR M.
The crazy making IS REAL as you said. Hence the entire thread on it. I think doing the changes I’m doing (limiting sexual contact to "dating mode" and inviting but not waiting on H) are going to help me while we work out where the M is going and whether or not H wants to do the work to heal.
H says the M will never be as good as the old M because the security is gone for him. I never shared this security he speaks of. Mostly from FOO and also heavily from negativity, comparisons, constant criticism and financial abuse (mismanagement, selfish entitlement and gaslighting and lies told to family) that H practiced in our earlier M. I disagree with him- the M can be much better, even though the security is gone, because we will have deeper respect, mutual enjoyment in each other’s company and a greater appreciation for what really could have been lost.
Yeah, I’m in rebuilder mode (FINALLY) and am wanting to co-pilot the bus of his recovery. H just has to decide whether he wants to take a seat and turn the key. Can’t drive it for him- it’s HIS bus.