People, even those we love the most, say and do hurtful things--even when they don't cheat. It's a fact. So what do you do with the info, with the hurt you feel?
My H said something very hurtful when we were newly married. (Because he's always been somewhat of a non-thinking idiot.) I stewed about it, felt bad, but then I had a conversation with myself in my head. "You need to decide: do you care about this and want to let it impact your life forever? Or do you want to not care and learn to ignore? We need to decide! What's the plan?"
That's the truth no matter how you look it. At any "it" that comes up. So which is it? Do you want to let it ruin things, or do you want to let it go?
Gently, have you considered divorce? I mean, seriously considered it as a path toward healing.
If you cannot handle the level of hurt one throws at you, if the insult is so great that you feel you have lost all dignity, then divorce is the only antidote. A very, very loving and remorseful WS may help you recover, but sometimes our dignity just will not allow us to forgive or forget. If this is you, you have to admit it to yourself and end your suffering. You have to admit that it's too hurtful to your dignity and leave. Will your self-esteem recover? Maayyybbbeee. But it's not a guarantee. (See below)
One if the aspects of healing (for me) was the realization that I put waaaay too much stick on what my H thought of me.
Yep. Maybe we need to love and accept ourselves enough to not care what a WS thinks or says? We should just say, "Maybe it's true, but I don't care because I am a freaking amazing person and total catch!" If that is your decision--and I believe it's a good one--then that is an inside job. You working on you. Your self-esteem comes from you, not what others think of you. Make that be true by doing the work. You have to learn the art of self-love and admiration, and that work may be required whether you R or D.
For me and my H's early insult, I decided that my H had very high standards for me but low ones for himself. So I decided to see myself as the amazing partner and beautiful person that I was and am--outside and in. His insult doesn't bother me one bit now, nor do the other hurts we have lived through. I know who I am now. I value myself just as I am. I don't need anyone else to agree or act as my cheerleader. I have no doubt that whatever obnoxious but hurtful things your WW said, they do not compare or even count against the many reasons she wants to stay with you. And I feel confident that many other women wouldn't think twice about these supposed deficits and would instead see all your attributes. But it's all about the tape that plays in your head and the messages you tell yourself.
So if this hurt is too huge and you are just afraid to D, I'm sorry but this R will probably not work. You are trying to swallow a bowling ball, and it simply won't happen. Your dignity won't allow it.
But if you can begin to work on loving you as you, imperfections and all, and elevate your own opinion of yourself over what anyone else says, then you can be very happy again. But like I said, that's an inside job. And you are going to need to learn how to really love and accept yourself. It took time and lots of IC for me to accomplish this.
Good luck to you!
I know you can be truly happy again.
Eta: I notice that your tagline says, "Crazy about each other," but here you are telling us these horrible things that she said about you. Do you think it's possible that reality is relentlessly intruding into the story that you've told yourself? In a way that won't stop until it is properly acknowledged?
It has been my experience that when we want something to be true but are continually faced with contradictions, anxiety and depression then haunt us. They are protective forces, I think, who are loudly screaming, "Things are NOT fine! They are NOT as you say they are! Do something. You are not safe."
Are these thoughts trying to protect you from glossing over unforgivable indignities? One thing is for sure: these feelings are demanding your attention and healing--one way or another.
[This message edited by OwningItNow at 4:41 AM, Saturday, October 8th]