36 year marriage, filing is imminent. Emotionally exhausted.
This has been in some ways a very, very long time coming, and yet, it is still so hard to accept. 3 affairs over the span of a couple of decades. He would have an affair (mostly emotional, a little physical), I would find out (usually after at least two or three years), I would essentially drag an apology out of him, then drag promises out of him, we would continue on, I would experience anxiety, he would essentially call me crazy, then I would find out 6 or so years later it was happening again. Rinse and Repeat. A narcissist who needs constant attention. Is obsessed with working out and his body. Obsessed is kind of an understatement. He is now 62, I'm mid 50's, and I met him at 18. After I found out about the latest affair, and a few months after he assaulted me in a drunken rage, I knew I could not continue. I moved out, and moved out of the area. I now find myself pretty much alone all the time. Working from home, feeling shell shocked. He has doubled down on his infidelity, and has been happily dating. I feel like a piece of crap he happily wiped off the bottom of his shoe. Literally no remorse- he is happy as a clam to be officially. on the dating market. I know he is no prize, and yet all the years together it's hard to let go and realize everything as I knew it, and all the plans in the future are gone. Sadly, every photo, every memory has been destroyed knowing how deceptive he has been. He goes to church regularly, goes to Bible studies. I can't wrap my mind around how someone can be such a fraud- although I legitimately think he thinks he is a pretty good Christian. Again, he has all the signs of a classic narcissist- I don't use the term loosely. Because he can be charming, he has almost everyone convinced that he is the nice guy and I'm 'crazy'. The gaslighting over such a long period of time has made me feel pretty crazy, I will admit. I've been lashing out at him for the past few months almost like I'm trying to find a button of humanity or something. I'm pretty certain I'm stuck in some sort of trauma bond with him, and I really need to get out of it before it swallows me up. So, I left my home (will have to sell), live in a small little condo now. It's been difficult to adjust to that too-- I've really lost so much. Working more to make ends meet and really just trying to get by day to day. Was crazy sick with COVID a few months ago, soon after I moved. Now I'm losing A LOT of my hair. I had a ton to begin with, but am now down about 75%. It's just been a horrible time and I'm lamenting. I'm starting counseling soon because I feel like I can't get grounded. I just am sort of in this weird world where it feels like I can't focus and like I came out of a war zone. Lots of tears. I really am trying to just keep one foot in front of the other-- not allowing myself to stay in bed because I'm afraid I'm on the precipice and don't want to make matters worse. I found out recently my husband has been communicating with someone we know from church. She knows he is still married and doesn't seem to have a problem seeing him while he is still married. I actually got told that I should work on my fruits of the spirit. It could be that because I've always kept these things to myself, over the past few months I've been spilling my guts. I think it is a result of the major gaslighting. Pretty angry and full of grief. All of this to say, I need to prepare myself for the next phase as he wants to get this divorce going next week. Word to the wise: Rug sweeping and not holding someone fully accountable only prolongs the inevitable.
9 comments posted: Wednesday, December 1st, 2021
My story is in JFO. I've made a lot of big moves in the past few months- saying no more to the lies and deception, moving out of the house, out of my hometown, getting a new full time job to support myself (the original plan was to retire with my husband in a year or two). Nothing is the same and I feel angry, depressed, deceived, lonely, and just about every other negative emotion. I don't know how long it takes to recover from something like this- particularly when I was in a 35+ year marriage from the time I was quite young. I am just reaching out for ideas on how to get through this time when everything is so overwhelming and I feel like there is no hope that I will ever feel happy again.
4 comments posted: Wednesday, July 28th, 2021
3 EA's .... that I know of.
My story-- I met my husband at 18 and we married two years later. We have been married 36 years- 2 children. Found out about 20 years ago about the first EA. 7 years ago about the second. (found SI at that time, didn't post, but leaned heavily on the site. So, here I am again). Was devastated both times. Never really understood the his need for constant validation and his obsession with exercise and his body. It's been an ongoing issue for the entire marriage. He attends church regularly and likes to portray himself as a family man. He is a fraud. Found out again a couple of months ago, that he has done it again. More likely he never stopped with this behavior. I believe I married a narcissist. I saw a lot of these behaviors- no empathy, no remorse, lying, etc., but never really saw the problem in its entirety. He is an attention seeking, bottomless pit of a human being who has no remorse for the damage he has caused. He is now in counseling and proudly proclaims he is "working on himself". He is actively in the narcissist discard phase and it feels as though I never existed. After this latest discovery, I was in such despair and I knew I couldn't co exist with him in the same house. I moved out, and am actively working on my co-dependency, determined to claim some self respect and stop being with someone who makes me feel completely dehumanized. Every day is a battle as I try to figure out who I am and what my future will look like as everything I have ever known is no longer intact. There are days where it is literally one breath at a time as I try to hold myself together. One thing is for certain, this path will require a lot of work in every area of my life, but again, I know that I probably would not have survived if I stayed knowing what I now know about the man I married.
11 comments posted: Monday, July 26th, 2021