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TwoDozen

Play stupid games ; Win stupid prizes

Feeling low.

So last night was my first proper night out since separating from WGF. Just me and a mate, few beers, dinner, few more beers and a club.

Probably let my hair and my guard down more than I was planing to if you know what I mean and this morning I have a girl less than half my age texting me. Don’t even know how it happened or where we met etc I just know we was at the club together.

I feel f****** awful about it.

Nothing major happen just dancing and whatever in the club., no going back to anyone’s house etc but I feel like I’ve cheated. I don’t feel good about my behaviour in anyway, I don’t want to see this girl again I just wanna curl up and disappear

Why the hell do I feel like this. I’m free and single.

This is not the life I want to live I still just want my old comfortable predictable life back.

5 comments posted: Sunday, October 17th, 2021

Post separation finances

WGF and I are agreed on a 50/50 child care situation and will take care of any bills within our own individual homes

What is less clear are those bills that are neither her nor mine.

For example

She will keep our pets (I can’t take them) so will need to pay 50% of their upkeep

Kids clothes, hobbies, costs etc

Kids school friends birthday presents

How do you all manage the money that goes back and forth between you? We are agreed on 50/50 for all these things but how does that work in principle?

We currently have a joint account which we plan to close but would be ideal for keeping a “float” for these kind of situations however that leaves us financially linked and a credit risk.

We could send money back and forth each time one of us takes care of one of these situations but that sounds laborious

Eg

WGF “I’ve just bought DD a pen for school, it cost $1.20, can you send me 60 cents please”

What do you guys do?

TD

12 comments posted: Thursday, July 1st, 2021

Is this unusual?

Tomorrow I will exchange and complete on my new house, over the next few days I will slowly move out - but why slowly?

Well essentially we get on great, we don’t argue, I don’t ram her A down her throat and we enjoy each other’s company.

We have children who live in the same house and we are both showing them that we can be amicable or more than amicable

She has agreed to almost every single request I have made, we have without conflict agreed who will keep what, take what and where the kids will spend their time.

She has bought me gifts to furnish my new home and I have taken care of jobs that needed doing here in advance of my leaving this house (my kids primary abode) so she doesn’t have to worry about them

So how is this all possible - I don’t see a single other instance of this situation on SI, we are like a couple who have R’d without the R

Neither of us want what is happening but she could not deliver what I asked for and I cannot give her what she wants

My needs - NC / truth (she works with AP and doesn’t want to talk about the A so no IC and no timelines etc for me)

Her needs - Pretend it never happened just move on and be better to each other.

I have been going over and over this in my head, can we stay friends, should we stay friends - and ultimately I come to the same points

We are parents and have to coparent

If I had to exclude anyone who has cheated from my life that would be a lot of people and many who I am close to and rely on inc my best friend for life and father but many many others so what sense does it make to treat WGF any different? - would I be cutting my nose off to spite my face - she is facing the consequences of her choices by having to support herself financially and despite what I expected she is not blaming that on me for initiating separation. She is for the most part accepting responsibility for the outcome of her choices.

Is this the calm before the storm?

Are the any precedents for this situation here on SI?

TIA TD

38 comments posted: Tuesday, June 29th, 2021

Admin please

How do I tell someone their inbox is at a limit and I can’t reply to their private message?

Without specially mentioning it in a forum message

Message is something like inbox has reached limit of 200 messages

Thanks in advance

TD

1 comment posted: Monday, June 7th, 2021

Update

So just heard from WGF to inform me that she’s dropped her signed paperwork in at the solicitors to instruct them to handle her purchase of my half of the family home

Everything else regarding mortgage applications / approvals / closing on my own new home etc is already underway so not being married this is about as close to initiating divorce as we get...

I’m not going to lie I shed a tear (or lots of tears) when I got her message this afternoon. I’ve been holding them in for a while now trying to fake it before I make it and havnt really had any kind of strong emotional days for a number of weeks now but this hit me today.

It’s a mixture of sadness, loss, anxiety, excitement, empowerment, grief, and all sorts of other mixed emotions but mostly this is a sad day, one I never ever imagined would come to pass.

If I was to compare, it’s nothing like the raw emotions of the 3 - 6 months post dday but compared to how I’ve been for a month or two it’s pretty strong.

Separating is going about as smoothly as one could hope for. WGF has agreed to any and all request I have made and we have so far continued to have a very amicable split. We get on so well and agree on almost everything besides the A which of course is a mute point now so life at home is harmonious and today’s step was as simple as agreeing who turn it is to put the bins out.

I still cannot fathom whether or not this is an epic game of chicken and who will blink first but regardless another step in the process has been ticked off.

18 months post Dday this still doesn’t feel like my life 😢

TD.

7 comments posted: Tuesday, May 25th, 2021

No Regrets

In the time I’ve been on SI (around 1 year) I have read and been told multiple times that no BH who has chosen to D/S has regretted it

Currently right now we have not 1 but 2 BH’s posting that for reasons of loneliness / children they do regret their decision to leave and they are considering or actively moving forwards with a new attempt at reconciliation.

In addition there are at least 4 BH’s (myself included) in the phase between telling their WW they want a D and actually physically separating, who for want of a better description are in and out like a fiddlers elbow.

My analysis of all of these situations indicates we have WWs who do regret their choice to cheat, would probably take it back if they could, are very forthcoming with ramping up the affection and focusing on any positive fallout of the A like closer connection, HB etc but for reasons that I just cannot understand cannot (or will not) accept the negative consequences such as lower trust levels, adjustments to their daily lives to make their spouses feel safe (transparency, NC etc)

My observation from the posters stories are that these WWs are not inherently bad people, made terrible choices, sadly doubled down on these terrible choices by refusing to acknowledge the BH’s pain and now years down the line are still trying to rugsweep.

I’m not entirely sure what the point of my posts is but I guess I have 2 questions

1. Are the 2 posters mentioned above genuinely the first BH’s that have come back after D/S and said they regret their decision to leave?

2. What is going on with our WW’s who desperately want to stay M but even when faced with the ultimate consequence of D/S can’t or refuse to accept the proven steps to achieve that? Why is D/S an easier pill to swallow than what you are asking them to do?

TD

18 comments posted: Thursday, May 20th, 2021

Playing Chicken

It’s been a while since I posted and generally I’m in a pretty good place. In the last few weeks, between us, WGF and I have made a huge number of steps towards separation but it’s clear that’s not what either of us really want, it’s just what’s happening.

Someone mentioned this previously and I had had the feeling myself, that WGF and I appear to be locked into a game of chicken and neither of us are backing down.

Some back ground

WGF of 24 years had a 3 month PA with a CoW at the end of 2019. All the signs were there and I asked her what was going on multiple times but in the end, like so many others on here I had to find evidence before she would confess. The months that followed were littered with all the things we see so regularly on Si, gaslighting, blameshifting, minimising, catasthroihising, denial, TT etc etc

I like many others fumbled in my attempts to get what I needed and did the pick me dance for a long time

But eventually at around 6 months post Dday WGF fell back in love with Twodozen again and fell hard.

At this point I started to feel stronger and started to realise that how I had behaved for the prior 6 months was affecting my own self esteem, so I consciously and sub consciously started to back off whilst I watched what WGF did. She did not waiver in her attempts to love bomb me (for the record I believe this is genuine) but still refused to talk much detail about the affair, saying why go backwards, it’s in the past etc.

And we carried on this little tango of me dipping in and out of depression whilst WGF hoped it would all just go away if we waited it out.

Eventually at roughly 1 year post Dday I changed IC and this one advised me to put what I needed on the table and be prepared to walk. So I did

I ask for

NC (they still work together)

Find out why / how this happened

Deal with answers to above

No more lies past / present / future (including telling me anything I didn’t already know)

She failed in all 4, she had 3 IC sessions before dropping out, refused to quit work or even ask AP to quit work, and will not tell me anything I don’t know in case it hurts me more. She also vocalised she can’t live with these kind of questions for the rest of her life and just wants to forget it all ASAP.

So very amicably we agreed we can’t go forward. We agreed to separate. We lived this reality on our own for a few weeks before finally telling the children a couple of weeks ago. Since then it’s been a whirlwind of events including finding a new house for me and having my offer accepted, agreeing terms on the current house and telling our families (who did not know) within a couple of months from now I will move out and our new life’s without each other will begin but to the point of my post

This is very clearly not what she wants and as anyone who has read my ramblings before will know it is not what I want, but here we are

So today and for the last few months our house is calm and full of love, we speak to the mortgage company together, we watch a movie, we look at houses for me together, we go for lunch, I make an offer which is accepted, we cook a nice dinner together, we agree terms on current house, we take kids out to a restaurant. I think you see the picture.

Now I never initiated this course of action to manipulate WGF into doing the things I asked, it was as described above an agreement that we can’t progress without those things I asked for and she can’t progress if I don’t let it go. But I am shocked at the uncomfortable things that WGF has been willing to do that to me seem more uncomfortable than what I asked for. Exposing herself to kids and family was not easy.

She told the kids and took all the blame, she’s increased her hours to be able to afford things when I leave, she is signing up to a lonely life without me rather than finding a solution to NC. Our debts will increase from virtually zero to $$$$$$$ as we take on new mortgages each etc.

I feel I am being stubborn here too, but I know that when Covid subsides and they end up back within the same office and the office socials begin (which she says she cannot get out of) I won’t be okay so I stick to my course of action.

What am I witnessing here? we both clearly (to me) love each other very much but we are on our way to separation regardless.

Has anyone else been here before, had a WS that just couldn’t do what you needed and you had to separate even though if you took infidelity out of the equation your relationship would be / is considered idealic.

This post is not a last ditch attempt for me to try R again, for the reasons stated above I know there’s pain on the horizon if I don’t S. I’m just trying to understand what I’m witnessing from both WGF and myself. We can’t be the first to have trodden this path, is there a logical conclusion / destination to all this?

Has anybody else come through infidelity, separated from their spouse but still felt like their WS was their best friend?

For the record the last few weeks since telling the children, finding a house, telling in-laws etc have been the easiest weeks since all this started. I feel calm and at peace with myself now that I am no longer lying to my children and family, now that I am no longer hiding behind a fake smile. That smile on my face today is genuine, I am not happy about what happened or where we are headed but a huge weight has been lifted of my shoulders and I feel at peace for the first time in almost 2 years.

I think for WGF it’s the same deal, now that R is off the table I have no need to rehash old questions, I no longer ask her anything about her A we just talk about the kids, future plans, plans that neither of us want but this seems ultimately more palatable to her than the hard work of R.

FYI beyond the initial shock the kids have coped remarkably well, probably due to the fact there is zero animosity in the house and everything is happening relatively frictionless. Our parents are completely confused of course but coming to terms with it.

TD

25 comments posted: Thursday, April 29th, 2021

IC recommended Esther

Just looking for thoughts. Currently In amicable IHS with STBXWGF in early stages of discussing separation agreement and telling kids.

It’s clear that neither of us want S but that neither of us are prepared for the hard work of R and WGF is unwilling to accept any of the consequences that come with it.

WGF has quite her IC after 3 sessions and said it was a waste of time.

My IC knows that I still love my WGF and last night suggested that I take separation off the agenda for a bit to see if I become okay without the NC I asked for, the issue that drove me to start the S discussion in the first place (AP is a colleague) She also suggested I read Ester Perrel

Is she suggesting I try to rugsweep? Or is there any value in listening to what she is saying?

TD

59 comments posted: Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

Finally being honest

I’m only a couple of weeks into the start of separation and have a long way to go. But from my new slightly changed vantage point I realised something last night

Both WGF and I are finally being honest with each other. Not with respect to what she did, she’ll take many of those details to the grave with her and only 2 people will ever know what really happened.

No what I mean is that we’re both being honest about what we wanted all along and that is the “old relationship” with a few benefits of infidelity bolted on such as HB and date nights etc. Neither of us was really ever prepared to accept the long term consequences of her affair, the lost trust (in both directions) the “different kind of love” etc

It took us a while to get here, 15 months but we are being honest with each other that what we want we can’t have and therefore let’s change direction and separate.

She doesn’t like the consequences of S much either but she seems much more prepared to accept these than she was the consequences and work required for R so I think it’s for the best.

It’s kind of freeing, coming to this realisation, sad but freeing. I no longer need details, my concerns and anxieties have changed from one thing (her affair) to another (finances and the children) and these anxieties are easier to absorb and deal with.

I’m not naive and I’m sure there are some obstacles ahead of me but I’ve found a little bit of peace to collect myself, the eye of the storm maybe?

What is interesting though, is that in talking about S it is very clear that even during the A she had absolutely no plans on what she wanted, she has no fixed ideas on where she wants to live, what her life looks like post S, no real ideas on coparenting etc. I’d always thought this was an exit A but i’m now starting to believe this was an MLC / cake eating A.

TD

[This message edited by TwoDozen at 5:02 AM, April 1st (Thursday)]

14 comments posted: Thursday, April 1st, 2021

Separation Agreement

Moving to IHS (once kids are told) so need to draft an amicable agreement regarding what happens during and after this time. As we are not married we don’t have any legal ties other than house and children so we will be using a period of approximately 6 months to deal with those before selling the house.

Just interested if anybody has any suggested separation agreement clauses or complete agreements that I should consider including.

This should be a fair agreement for both WGF and BBF with everything being split 50/50. I am not interested in coming out with more because I am the betrayed. I just want 50% of the assets and most importantly 50% of the time with the children.

TIA

TD

[This message edited by TwoDozen at 4:44 AM, March 31st (Wednesday)]

5 comments posted: Wednesday, March 31st, 2021

Looking for a thread

I read a post yesterday, something along the lines of “why does a WS wait for D to get serious before they do the hard work”

There were some excellent replies, one in particular that I wanted to read again but I can’t find the thread.

I don’t even remember what forum it was in now.

If you remember the thread would appreciate some directions to find it again.

2 comments posted: Tuesday, March 30th, 2021

Telling the children

I am looking for age appropriate scrips for telling the children that mum and dad are separating and the reason why

WGF wants to go down the mum and dad don’t love each other anymore route but I am adamant they need an appropriate version of the truth and not to lie to them.

Besides I haven't fallen out of love with WGF and neither (to my knowledge) has she fallen out of love with me. We are just not cut out for the hard work of R and as someone on here has in their signature love is not a measure of how much pain one person is willing to endure.

All the children are all old enough to know what cheating is but have zero 1st hand experience of it. The youngest is 15 and the eldest is a young adult. All still live at home and are not self sufficient.

Separating will include selling the family home and therefore the children will be moving between mum and dads new abodes. This will likely entail sharing rooms with their younger / older siblings and generally a less comfortable existence than they currently enjoy.

Having personally been through a year + of something akin to depression myself and now witnessing WGF going through all the same stages I went through last year, it would be naive of me to think that the kids won’t experience something similar so I need to tell them but also somehow sugar coat it at the same time so they don’t go off the rails.

Ideas or suggestions?

[This message edited by TwoDozen at 10:58 AM, March 25th (Thursday)]

26 comments posted: Thursday, March 25th, 2021

Throwing in the towel

Just a quick post to say that after several exhausting weeks WGF and I have agreed to throw in the towel and I will be moving forward with S.

I won’t post all details just yet but essentially after almost one and a half years of me driving the R bus (call it a pick me dance if you must) I asked WGF to take her turn at the wheel and she wasn’t able to.

It seems that I wanted R more than she did or more accurately I was prepared for the hard work and consequences more than she was.

Trying under these conditions is physically and mentally exhausting (on both of us) and ultimately we could not agree on the end goal (reality vs denial) or steps to take us there

Whilst I called it quits and she reluctantly agreed that it’s for the best, I am in the unenviable situation of still being very much in love with my STBXWGF (had hoped i would never use that one) and I do believe vice versa so it’s going to be a difficult situation for me to navigate my way through.

However I am committed to this course of action as I have seen almost zero efforts to move out of a wayward mindset.

I gave her the guidebook 10 months ago and she has ignore or discounted every single piece of advice within it because “we are special” and “we are soul mates” and whilst I agree with both those sentiments there was nothing special about her PA and each and every thing she did to hide it from me and therefore we don’t get a pass.

I am not a quitter but I am smart enough to know when the odds are stacked against me and we have been locked into a zero sum game now for too long whereby we are only able to exchange our own pain for each others. We have taken almost no steps to offload any of that pain so that it’s unburdens the two of us.

Pre A I would have said like many do that I’m a dealbreaker guy, maybe that is what has happened. But since dday 1 I have been pro R and under the right circumstances I would still advocate for R if both parties are willing to do the work. Sadly that is not us

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all the posters who took time to help me on my journey, it has ended as some of you predicted but I am glad that I tried, proud of myself for how far I have come since the trauma of dday and the ensuing fog that followed.

WGF is not a bad person, she made some terrible choices and unfortunately has not matured to own those choices and accept the consequences.

We are as of my writing this still “best freinds” and we have not told anyone IRL as we decide when and how to tell our children and our families about the battle we have been fighting. I thought for a very long time we were fighting on the same side, but sadly it appears that is not the case.

I will come back I’m sure to ask for advice of telling children, separating finances, building myself up for the big wide world without my “wingwoman”

I have learned many things on this journey but still have so much to learn. I have done many things wrong but I have stuck to my principles and my code of conduct and I can hold my head up high.

I do not know what tomorrow will bring, their was a time when my future was so clear to me. That came crashing down in Dec 2019 and I have yet to decide what the alternate future will look like. I will start small, take some time for myself, plan some trips with friends, focus on the kids, and see where that takes me.

Heartbroken - 2D

[This message edited by TwoDozen at 9:14 AM, March 18th (Thursday)]

16 comments posted: Thursday, March 18th, 2021

IC for WS expectations

So my WGF has her 1st session of IC this week. And I want to kinda prepare myself for what I might see afterwards and in the coming weeks.

N.b this is also my IC, the same IC who in only a matter of weeks has taken me from passively waiting for WGF to “get it” and do “the work” to me telling WGF what my needs are to consider continuing with R. The 1st of those needs was IC for her.

My fear is telling me that WGF will attempt to convince the IC that this was my fault. I don’t think IC will accept that but it could be a battle of wills for a while if she keeps up the sessions.

I’m conscious that she hates herself over this and her self defence will kick in if the sessions become too tough.

So what can I expect in the first weeks of IC can I expect anything positive from a single session or should I be actually be preparing for a step backwards at the start?

TIA 2D

55 comments posted: Tuesday, February 23rd, 2021

Apologies

To those trying R or who have Rd, How often does your WS apologise for what they did? What do those apologies look like? When did they start? How far out are you?

2D

14 comments posted: Friday, February 19th, 2021

Do you discuss your IC sessions with your SO?

Just wondering what’s the general consensus here about sharing what was discussed in your IC sessions

I am in IC (mostly talk therapy) but my WGF is not. She does ask how my session went and if I want to talk about it which I usually do 1 or 2 days after the session. Generally tiptoes around me a couple of days wondering what we talked about.

Honesty is my thing, always has been, so why not tell her what we discussed.

I have no secrets from her except .....

The one thing I keep to myself, SI and even that pains me, but at least here I can really vent and get sh*t off my chest.

12 comments posted: Friday, January 8th, 2021

Why am I here?

I’m just over a year out from Dday, and I still can’t believe how much pain (qty not amplitude) that infidelity causes for me in particular. It’s literally the 1st thing I think of when I wake up, occupies my mind all day and it’s the last thing im thinking as I drift off to sleep, which invariably means that my dreams are all infidelity themed too. Sometimes it’s WGF & AP, sometimes it me with some random person my dreams have invented or maybe someone I actually know, other times it’s dreams about running, falling, suffocating but they all started after her A.

Anyway, as mentioned in other posts, although I hadn’t connected the dots beforehand I am literally surrounded by As. On WGF side it’s every woman in her FOO, her sister, her mother, her grandmother, her grandmothers 3 sisters all had As

On my side it’s my father, and every single one of my uncles. Not so far either me or my brother.

In all of the cases above (except my parents) they are all still together, some as many as 60 years later, and they all did this without SI, without IC, without books, without “talking about it” and have as far as I can see “successfully rugswept” some even had an OC to deal with.

Now here I am, and from what I can observe actually in a better position than most of the above scenarios, there was only one A, it was short lived, and we have without a doubt the best relationship of any of the couples given in my examples above.

So why me, why am I here, reading, going to IC..... what’s different about me compared to all the other males in WGF FOO who just accepted it, moved on. And all the other males in my FOO who are the cheaters.

I asked my IC this, told him I don’t understand and he just said, stop that now, you will never understand something that isn’t within your moral compass and you never will. You will never find an answer that satisfies your ethics and therefore you will never stop searching so you just have to accept it.

So how do I get beyond that, if I can’t understand it, how do I forgive it, how do I accept it.

And just to finish, there is a astrology problem known as the “Fermi Paradox” which posits that with so many likely places in the universe that could harbour life, and with life starting so quickly here on Earth, there should be millions if not billions of other intelligent lifeforms in the universe so “where is everybody”

In the same vein I read that 60% of males cheat and 40% of females cheat, so if my maths is correct that could be every couple on the planet is / has been / will be affected by infidelity. So where are they? Yes there are new joiners on SI everyday but nothing like what the numbers would indicate for the US alone.

Which brings me neatly back to my question, what is it about me, and the other betrayed spouses on this site that means we don’t “just get over it” when evidence suggests that many more do than don’t.

21 comments posted: Tuesday, January 5th, 2021

Blueprint

For now let’s just call It plan B, because both SI and my IC tell me I need one. But also because........ infidelity sucks

So I’m looking for a blueprint of all the things to consider in advance of calling it a day, that could be today, tomorrow, next month or never.

For the record I’m in the U.K., we are not married and we have kids in education. Joint accounts and individual accounts but we treat everything as “ours”

Home is jointly owned and residual mortgage is in both names.

Is there a standard blueprint for Plan B? Not just the financial stuff but also the legal stuff and the moving on with your life stuff.

If it came to pass that either I or WGF called time on R I think it could be done amicably without courts being involved but forwarned is forearmed I guess.

There would certainly be a period of continuing to live together, especially with Covid

5 comments posted: Tuesday, January 5th, 2021

Thank you and Happy New Year

Just wanted to post a short message to all the good people of SI that have supported me in the 6 months or so since I regrettably needed to find kindred folk

This truly is a place of great support and wisdom and kindness I have received from “internet strangers” has helped me through the most difficult thing I have ever faced in my life

Special mention to my SI aunts, uncles, brothers and sisters who have been kind enough to spend their time to guide me through this trauma in the DMs

For those new BS reading this, sorry you are here, it’s sucks. But you will get better, it won’t be the future you always envisioned but it won’t hurt like it does right now forever. For now just focus on eating, sleeping and exercising, the rest will come.

Wishing everybody a happy new year and better times in 2021

2D

1 comment posted: Thursday, December 31st, 2020

Boundaries vs Control

In typical 2D fashion I drafted a super long post on this then decided to just ask the following

What is the difference between boundaries and controlling behaviour?

How do you effectively communicate your ‘boundaries’ and or ‘consequences’ for ‘potential R’ without being ‘controlling’

There that’s a hell of a lot shorter and to the point than my first draft 😂

27 comments posted: Wednesday, December 16th, 2020

Once more around the sun ☀️

I thought I’d take some time to see where we are today, once around the sun (1 year from Dday) compared to pre A - no point going over the A again for now so just trying to compare pre A with post A

Affection Is at an all time high, she follows me round like a lost puppy and hates me being out of her sight for too long. Days are filled with loving messages, gestures, glances, touches and of course sex, lots of sex, all different kinds of sex. This is in stark comparison to where we were pre A when as I look back I seemed to have become a mild annoyance to her at best. There was no hugging, kissing, reasonably frequent (ish) but fairly vanilla sex. It’s fair to say now, though I did not know it at the time, that we had become coparents / room mates. Post Dday I felt like I could not love anyone anymore than I loved my WGF, it literally almost killed me to think she would leave me. As time has gone on my feelings have subdued somewhat and I’m somewhat close to ILYBNILWY she was 1 year ago. I guess this is some kind of built in self defence similar to her brain circa 1 year ago telling her she didn’t love me to protect her self from the effect of guilt and shame I think my brain is subduing my emotions to protect itself from future hurt, only time will tell.

Trust, well funnily enough I trust her more now than before her A. I know that sounds crazy and another revelation could be just around the corner but this has hit her hard, she can’t stand to think of what she did, who she became, evident in the fact she hasn’t told anyone but her wayward sister and only then because she was worried I was falling apart. She’s not told her mum or her best friend of over 40 years. And she absolutely won’t talk to a stranger (IC) about it. So trust that she’s not actively in or likely to rekindle her A is there - for now. I’m not naive and know there will be periods of mistrust in the future especially if she doesn’t come to terms with what she did, I feel in some ways this is the biggest risk that she will hate herself so much that she puts herself in danger again. Anyway Covid certainly takes a lot of the risk away. Does she trust me? Well that’s an entirely different topic, she offered the hall pass (FFS) but she is insanely jealous if I even glance in the direction of another woman, even if that’s on TV. Add into the fact that I have lost weight, gained muscle and just starting to get ripped (I have a visible 6 pack for the 1st time in my life at 45) I travel for work frequently (not this year of course) to places where a large % of the young female population would like nothing more than an affluent provider and age isn’t a factor for them, possibly even a benefit. So yeah even though I have remained faithful for almost 25 years (that should say 45 years as I’ve never cheated on anyone ever) with plenty of temptation and opportunities in the past she’s worried. If I’m being honest I’m a little worried about how future Twodozen will react when temptation and opportunity knock!!!

Respect well that the biggie isn’t it. I like to think that she has more respect for me now than she ever had. She certainly had a view of how I would react if I found out which including rage, punishments, controlling behaviours etc etc all completely unwarranted because that is not how I’ve ever been but she knew when she started her A that it was a deal breaker for me because we’d had that chat a few years previous when her sister stepped out. Turns out I’ve been Mr nice (too nice) and I’ve even shocked myself with this. My best friend and my brother have told me without a shadow of a doubt they would have taken the doors of their hinges in rage but that’s not how I’ve reacted. Was she right though, was my former prediction correct that this is a deal breaker? Again only time will tell but if I was a betting man I’d put my money on Yes it probably is.

Do I respect her, well clearly that is a big fat NO. I’ve come to learn things about my WGF, seen her in new lights that I wish I’d never seen, can’t unsee. I mean besides the A she just did stupid shit, for example there are now explicit images of her out there, out of our control that could surface at any time, our kids could see them FFS. Will I ever get the respect I had for her back, I don’t know. Hopefully I will, she is of course, at minimum the mother of my children and has been there right by my side for close to 1/4 century and the amount of time she wasn’t cheating on me is significantly greater than the time she was (3 months)

Do I respect myself. Well I have pride in myself for not flipping out, for not pulling the figurative trigger (during the dark days post Dday) for being able to get back on top of eating, sleeping, exercising and finding ways to distract myself for moments of peace. But I lack respect for myself in my setting of boundaries and willingness to follow through on consequences for her “choices” but I cannot be who I am not. Over time I have come to realise I’m fucking awesome and there’s a lot of demand for fucking awesome out there if I decide to pull the plug.

So where does that leave us. Well on reflection we now live in a world where she loves, cherishes, respects me more than at any time in our 24 years but I don’t think she will ever fully trust me not to have a RA / ONS or more likely to call it quits.

I still love my WGF, not as much as before her A and it’s a different love but still more than many of my male friends love their faithful spouses. I enjoy spending time with her, in amongst the low moments there are many times of joy, real connection, laughter, lust, all the things I wish my former relationship looked like but didn’t know either a. That such a thing existed or b. That I deserved that

So that’s us 1 year out, me with one foot in and 1 foot out the door, able to trust but unable to commit. Her playing the pick me dance (ironic) taking huge tokes on the hopium pipe and singing la la la to herself to block out any thoughts we might not make it through. Hoping we will get through this because “we are best friends”, “we are soul mates”, and the one I hate the most “because we’re so much better together now”

Ouch

Hope this helps someone 3 months, 6 months, 9 months out. Things do get better, trust me when I say I was as low as you, I was in those dark places you are in, I was thinking those exact same awful things you are thinking, but in time you will realise your self worth. It’s not a journey I would wish on anybody but you will get through it. I don’t know what the final destination for me is but I’m more prepared for the journey than I was 1 year ago.

Finally just wanted to say a big Thankyou to all the people of SI. The kindness and sympathy of strangers has been very welcome during the loneliest of times.

The 1 year antiversary is this weekend. Wish me luck people.

Here’s to the next loop of the sun

Cheers 🍺

2D.

11 comments posted: Friday, December 11th, 2020

The Hamster Wheel

It seems like I’ve been in this state of mind for months now. Never so sure of my feelings that I am able to act on them one way or the other.

I know I can’t stay in this ambivilant phase forever. I want to make a decision but the hamster wheel in the back of my mind is continually turning morning noon and night. In, out, in, out, shake it all about.

I worry that I’m just one of those guys, one of those guys who can never get past the lies, the betrayal, that I will always remember what she is capable of when things aren’t going her way. but I don’t want to be that guy, I’m trying my hardest not to be.

I feel like I am continually on the verge of making a monumental decision, one which is only eclipse by the decision my GF of 24 years, the mother of my children, my best friend for more than half my life made just over 1 year ago. To step outside of our relationship and validate herself at the cost of everything. But somehow my decision feels worse, mine is forever not just a few stolen moments of ego boost and I’m just not ready to make such a life changing decision.

There is a Nicolas Cage film I saw many years ago. In that film Nick Cage was able to see into the future 6 seconds. He could run all the scenarios of what would happen in 6 seconds time based on the choices he made now. I want that, I want to be able to see 6 years into the future so I know I am making the right decision now.

At the moment I feel like I want to try both, to start a new life, stop putting my current life on hold and set WGF free from the guilt she feels each and every time she looks at me. She can have a new happy life without a partner who reminds her of who she was, who she is, who she doesn’t want to be. But she says she wants me, only me.

I also want to stay, to fight the good fight, to be a happy family, to watch my kids grow up in front of me not from a distance, to continue to enjoy the good things that have come from all of this, despite all of this. The deeper connection, the date nights, the togetherness we have now which is better than we ever had before even though the bar was already very high.

But I’m doing neither, or both, one foot in each camp.

We are good together, better than good and we are continually told as much by all those who are oblivious to what is torturing us both. But I don’t know if the damage within can be fixed whilst we are together. We are like the superhero couple in the film Hitchcock, soul mates who are meant to be together but destroy each other in the process.

If you saw us together you would not know this, even with all your years of experience of reading people’s stories on SI, your red flag radar would not detect a thing. You would see a couple deeply in love, enjoying each other’s company, with happy children and everything they could ever wish for. You would probably comment on how good we are together. You would covet the connection we have. That’s what makes this all so damn hard

I think I might be that guy, that guy who will never get used to this. That guy who will continually be pulled from pillar to post. But I want to be the other guy, the guy that against all the odds succeeds in the face of adversity. The guy who finds PRIDE in his DECISION to swallow his PRIDE

But she might be that gal, that gal who is so ashamed of what she did that she can’t bring herself to dig deep and stare at herself in the mirror. The gal who cannot bring herself to accept that she OWNS this, she DID this. The master compartmentaliser who protects herself from her self by pretending it never happened. Hoping, praying it will just go away. Shes learnt her lesson and she’ll never cheat again why can’t he believe her.

It’s been one hell of a rollercoaster ride so far. There is love in our house, bags of it. There is also guilt and shame, and with it comes defensiveness and frustration. I miss the old times but I know they will never return, not like they were.

I do believe that SHE believes she will never cheat again but we have many more years in front of us, with many more stresses for life to throw at us. We are not getting younger and our bodies will start to fail us. Who’s to say that when the shit hits the fan again that temptation won’t rear its ugly head again.

So many thoughts keeping that hamster wheel turning.

SHIT happens but maybe just maybe i CAN make a chocolate cake out of this pile of SHIT !!!.

Thank you for listening.

2D

52 comments posted: Friday, October 30th, 2020

Getting It rant

My best friend who until very recently was my only source of support is going through his own arguably more serious issues right now. I’ve been there for him too but....

Anyway his wife is very very ill with no end in sight to the complications she is dealing with.

My mate messaged me yesterday to vent, get some shit off his chest, and so he should. But he signed his message off with something that really bothered me and tells me that even though I’ve told him numerous times how much this has affected me, He’s had all the details, I mean it nearly killed me, he just will never get it, so why should I expect my WGF to get it either.

He signed his message off with something along the lines of “a couple of hours with a young hot chick would help”

Seriously am I the only person I know who doesn’t want to sleep with someone else other than my SO? Am i the weird one?

Rant over.

17 comments posted: Friday, October 23rd, 2020

House Improvements

Hi Guys. Not my 1st post but certainly a new topic for me and would appreciate the combined wisdom of SI on this one

Dday was December so we we’re 10 months in. I’m in R for recovery and would say I hope to get to a place where R = reconciliation eventually but a lot depends on WGF and whether I’ll actually get to a point of acceptance etc.

Anyway It makes no sense to me during these early days to treat GF in anyway other than how I would like to be treated so there is zero friction at home, we date, we are in HB, and we are a great team with respect to our children.

However whilst I am undecided on the future and maybe for some time I don’t know what to do with respect to minor and medium property improvements.

We jointly own our home which was actually under major renovation during her A and now have a number of final things that need to be finished. Some of these would be essential if we wanted to sell the place and some are on the mice to have if we continue to live there.

I told WGF Friday that I am okay to do the essential items ie we pay from our joint money but that I need some time (undefined) before I will commit to the nice to haves that won’t affect property value.

My question, we can’t live in limbo forever and I know that I will always have the option to separate but how long can I keep us in limbo with regards to the things we would like to have in the house. I realise I am not the cause of this but I just don’t know how long I will take to reach a decision to be “all in” if ever.

16 comments posted: Tuesday, October 13th, 2020

What is healed like?

I could probably post this in any of the forums but I’m in R (I say R for recovery at the moment) and I would say that I err on the side of reconciliation if that’s possible (I have more R thoughts than D thoughts) so this seems as good a place as any to post this question

I see lots of advice on how to heal, that I’m responsible for my own healing, that I can heal if I R or D but what does it feel like when you get there, how do you know you’ve healed?

I get that you never forget, hopefully you forgive but other than that what’s day to day life like once you’ve healed. Are you ever as optimistic, happy, capable as you were pre A or is it to be expected that you will always be something less than you were?

Thanks for any feedback.

8 comments posted: Monday, September 28th, 2020

Today’s the day

Today’s the day, the day that the 1st anniversaries officially start, the anniversary of line 1 on the timeline, one year from the day WGF stepped out of our 24 year relationship. There are many more dates on the timeline over the next few days, weeks and months that will stir up bad memories and emotions for me and I know I can’t avoid them.

I’m doing okay tbh much better than I dreamed I ever could be 9 months ago when my worst fears were confirmed. I’m in a stable place, I have the support of a good IC and my friends and family. Most of them don’t really understand the trauma or maybe even the decisions I’ve made along the way but they’ve helped and I’m doing okay.

I’m sleeping well, eating well, I’m working out & started running, I’ve dropped 6kg, dropped 3 sizes in jeans and gone up one size in t shirts 💪. I’ve completely changed my wardrobe and now dressing like a 30 year old (oh the irony) and day to day I’m coping and functioning somewhere near to my Pre A self. Yes i’m still on the rollercoaster I have good days and bad days but for now and for a while the highs and lows don’t seem to be as bad as they were a few months ago.

WGF is making progress too, certainly not enough yet but there’s progress nonetheless, however this post is about me not her.

I made a decision early on to give myself time to decide what I want, to see if over time I am capable of putting this behind me. I would say I’m in R for recovery not R for reconciliation. Day to day life is harmonious, we have a connection that was missing for a very long time, we are good together but I havnt committed to anything and probably won’t for a very long time.

So to the point of this post, what do I do to get myself through the 1st wave of anniversaries. It occurred to me this morning I have the following options

1. Just let them wash over me, try to forget the dates and the memories. But let’s be honest, that’s just not going to happen

2. Wallow in my own self pity, hide my distress from WGF and suffer in silence, buy another ticket to ride the rollercoaster.

3. Attempt to replace all these dates with new and better memories. Plan events, things to do, new experiences to coincide with those dates that currently stand out the most (the day the PA started, the ILYBNILWY chat, my birthday, Dday etc)

I’ve decided to go for option 3 but what to do? I should’ve maybe planned this in advance and arranged a boys night out for tonight or maybe a short getaway but that didn’t happen so I have limited options in that regard.

I’m thinking that I should hit this head on, book a restaurant for WGF and I and be clear to her why I’ve done this, that I want to replace that date in the calendar with memories of a nice night out as apposed to the ones I have now. Not to celebrate the anniversary but to say F*** Y** to the anniversary.

Yes, maybe she should be booking this table (maybe she has) but I can see reasons why a WS wouldn’t, would they really want to make the date front and centre in a BS mind, she doesn’t necessarily know that this date is already on my mind, I havnt mentioned it.

I can appreciate this might be seen as rewarding her but this is for me, my choice and my opportunity to say F*** Y** 2019...... 2021 here I come.

Appreciate any thoughts and opinions on what you did to get through these dates without slipping backwards, whether Im completely crazy 🤪 and also ideas for events and experiences for the upcoming anniversaries.

[This message edited by TwoDozen at 6:36 AM, September 23rd (Wednesday)]

21 comments posted: Wednesday, September 23rd, 2020

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