What I’ve learned
I wanted to share this information with the good people on this forum in hopes that it may be useful to someone. By profession I’m a therapist and I experienced the ultimate betrayals that occurred probably the entirety of my marriage. I am a survivor of emotional, physical , and sexual abuse from my childhood. As a child I learned to walk on eggshells.
They say as a man you seek out a partner similar to your mom. And as a female a partner similar your your dad.
The betrayal I experienced in my marriage was devastating and brought up all my past childhood trauma that I learned to function with and bury. After the betrayal I began to have flashbacks,was hyper vigilant, barely slept, lost almost 30lbs.
I almost immediately entered talk therapy and after a couple of months elected to go in to EMDR. I am certified in EMDR and thought it may be useful.
I began processing my early traumatic memories and I would always go between the past trauma and the current trauma I was experiencing. After some processing and discussion I realized that my childhood abusers were looked at in high regard. They were very well thought of, professional, religious etc. but behind closed doors they were monsters.
When I look back at my marriage with my ex it was exactly the same thing except the abuse was much more subtle. It came in the form of making mean comments, never validating my feelings , silent treatment , total disregard for my feelings, shitting down when asked to talk about issues etc.
The ex was living a double life. When it all came to light the people had a hard time believing at all as she perfected her mask just as my childhood abusers did. While in the marriage I knew something was amiss. I sensed it. I walked on egg shells just as I did as a child.
I finally had enough and divorced her. I believe she is a covert Narc.
So what does this say about me ? Why did I stay in a marriage where I was so mistreated and basically abused?
As a young child and teen that’s what I learned love was. My early experienced shaped me and I thought this to be normal. I thought I didn’t deserve better. I now know I do.
I am working on myself and trying healing all my current and present trauma and this will take time. But know this, if you have a past similar to mine take the time to heal and work on yourself. It’s the most painful work you will ever do but it is also the most liberating. Once you truly love yourself , with all of your flaws etc, you can truly love again.
5 comments posted: Thursday, July 14th, 2022
What am I doing
So I was recently divorced. Officially June 10. The ex ww was a serial cheater and was already going on dates prior to our divorce from various dating sites. So I went on kind of like a date thing with a colleague. Drinks etc. we talked for hours and seemed to have good conversation. I felt guilty even on the way to the place because I felt guilty don’t know why. So at the end of the night we end up making out etc and it felt amazing. It was the first time I’ve kissed another woman passionately in 15 years. I felt like a school kid. I also felt kind of nervous prior to it etc. is this normal? I am middle aged at 47. We text on and off etc but never act as if anything happened at work. Is this causal dating? I know I’m making my life more complicated at this point but I really enjoyed myself.
7 comments posted: Wednesday, June 29th, 2022
Divorce is done
Well I asked for a divorce on April 23. We med with a mediator in early May. The papers were e filed on the in early June and the divorce was finalized on June 10th. I compromised a lot but to me it was worth it for my peace of mind. I got half the equity, joint 50/50 legal and physical custody and she bought out my equity in the home. No alimony and no child support either way. The agreement states I have up to 6 months to move out of the house in order for me to be able to find suitable housing. I just pay half the bills. I moved in to the finished basement and for now I am sleeping on an air mattress. At 47 years old I never thought I would be sleeping in a basement on an air mattress but I am. And to be honest it feels good. I have a tv and full bath down here. It could be worse.
My 4 year old leaves teddy bears down here everyday for me because he doesn’t want me to be alone. My kids seem to be even more attached to me as they know I will eventually be moving. I reassured them and let them know that they will see me almost as much as they do now and that our time together will be extra special.
For me this was the best decision. If you read through my history I was married to a serial cheater. To be honest I think she’s a covert narc. But at this point I’m not worried about her anymore.
I wanted to really thank this forum for all of the solid advice. I read through so many posts and read so many books. I would like to thank most especially chamomile tea. The advice and wisdom I received from you was excellent. By profession I am a psychotherapist and wonder if you are as well.
For those that are in the thick of it the only advice I can give you is to trust your gut. I’m on the other side now in a way and although it’s a challenge and some times a struggle I look forward to tomorrow. I look forward to life. I look forward to spending time with just my kids and I and not my ww. I look forward to a bright future because I will make it that way. I will be my own light. I really never understood and could fathom how poorly I was treated until I was out of it. Until I broke the trauma bond connection. I hope you can to.
Be well SI. I will continue to read posts on here and maybe chime in once in a while. And remember, it’s ok to not br in a relationship. It’s ok to be single.
8 comments posted: Wednesday, June 15th, 2022
Just told the kids
My soon to be ex ww spoke with our 4 and 9 year old last night about the divorce. It was rough. Answered all of their questions and reassured them that mom and dad lave them. The kids came out to the living room at night and laid on me and cried and said they didn’t want me to leave.
It’s so devastating so see your kids in emotional pain like that. It also makes me angry at the ww. Like really angry. Anyways just wanted to get that off of my chest.
3 comments posted: Thursday, June 9th, 2022
Met with the mediator on Monday. Reviewed and signed off on everything. Paperwork was sent by e file. We don’t even have to appear. I asked for a divorce on April 23 and 2k later it’s basically done. Just needs the stamp of approval from a judge which is guaranteed as it’s a mutually agreed upon document.
It’s odd though. A 10 year marriage and total 15 year relationship done. We still live together and I have 6 months to leave per the agreement. I want to leave as soon as possible and I’m looking for a house now.
When I am around her I am completely triggered and anxious. When she isn’t around I’m completely fine. It’s so odd. The person that I loved, and probably still love, is like a stranger to me now. Without trust there is nothing. Just wanted to update everyone and thank you for all the support.
3 comments posted: Wednesday, June 8th, 2022
I think this is the fastest divorce in history. Told ww wanted a divorce April 23. Met with mediator. Split everything 50/50. Joint physical custody of the kids. No alimony or child support either way. We sign the agreement Monday which is then enforceable. Will be electronically filed at the court and that’s a wrap. Will probably take about 2 weeks for a judges signature. It’s amazing how quickly a 10 year marriage and 15 plus year total relationship just ends. I have no love for her anymore. Lost it after d day and the trickle truthing. I see her for the narc monster she is now. I don’t even think she is capable of any real love. Now I’ll just live my best life , heal from my wounds , focus on me, and continue to be the honest , moral , kind man that I have always been.
8 comments posted: Saturday, June 4th, 2022
So if you read my posts you know my story is ugly. I was trying to R with my WW and gave it about 6 months and wasn’t satisfied and couldn’t come to terms with what happened. Asked for A D on April 23. So far we have split our finances , came to many agreements and are working with a mediator.
I learned today that my WW has opened a dating profile on match. account. I was kind of taken a back but it reaffirms to me that I made the right decision.
12 comments posted: Sunday, May 22nd, 2022
Met with mediator a week and a half ago. Both financial affidavits submitted. This far it looks like a 50/50 split in regard to custody.
There are some disagreements about the value of the home and the amount I need to be paid for the equity. A bank appraisal was done about two months ago before the D and it came in low as all drive by bank appraisals do.
I also find my WW has become a super cu@$. She destroyed me emotionally and her family. I am and continue to remain cordial. She is just an emotionless mess of a human. I really believe she is either a narc or has a lot of those tendencies. She questioned why I wanted half the furnishing if I’m getting an equity buy out. I didn’t even ask for half. Much less. I don’t think she gets it. I’m frustrated , angry , and really traumatized. I don’t even know who this person is anymore. I’m InTherapy twice a week to work though my feelings.
Anyways how have other divorcees people deal with this stuff. Like getting what’s fair etc. we are going through mediation to save from the costs of litigation.
1 comment posted: Monday, May 16th, 2022
Told the WW a couple weeks ago that I was done and wanted a legal separation or divorce. I transferred half our funds to a seperate account and changed my direct deposit. We are splitting the bills etc. We have an appointment with a mediator on Monday day. Things seemed to be going alright until my WW went in to my phone when I was asleep and read texts I sent to my best friend and brother saying not so nice things about her and to vent. She was furious etc and couldn’t believe I would say those things about her. I explained that she really had no right to read my messages to my friend and brother etc. she was nasty for a week and seems to be settling down. I don’t get her thinking. She lied and cheated for years with multiple people and then gets mad cause I vent to my friends. She also thinks I am cheating on her because I text with a female friend.
It’s all crazy to me. She also asked me why I didn’t tell her I was going to take my wedding ring off. I told her I didn’t feel the need to tell her just like she didn’t tell me she was having affairs etc. is this normal behavior? I am trying to remain calm , peaceful and amicable for the sake of our kids. I get the sense that she doesn’t like the consequences of her actions.
4 comments posted: Thursday, May 5th, 2022
So I told the WW I wanted a legal seperation or divorce
WW had a talk last night after a date night that was challenging. If you read my post history you will see that I’ve been dealing with a lot. Serial cheating, trickle truth, etc. so I decided that it was time to ask for a d or legal seperation after discussing and processing this with my therapist. The reason why I came to this conclusion is we are almost 6 months past d day and I don’t feel true remorse or empathy, she doesn’t initiate the hard conversations, doesn’t seem bothered by what happened , hasn’t done what I asked to provide reassurance etc. she did talk a bit more but only when I dragged things out of her.
So basically last night I told her that I didn’t feel like things were working out between us. She asked what does that mean. I said that I just don’t feel the same anymore and the trust was gone. I then told her that in want a legal seperation or divorce. She said are you sure that is what you want. I thought for a moment and said yes. She didn’t say much of anything intially, then cried a bit, went to the living room with her phone, and came back to bed about 45 minutes later. I heard her crying on and off throughout the night and told her things would be alright.
I left for work this morning and she sent me a text that she was going to look at a house for sale that is close to her parents. I was kind of shocked but it lets me know that she probably moved on a long time ago. She said she wasn’t sure if she wanted to keep our home now or just sell it. Again kind of shocked.
I thought she would be upset or sad for a few days, maybe ask me to reconsider etc. when she text me she said she was looking at the house and didn’t want me to think she was doing anything behind my back. I said that was quick. She texted back that she is just doing what I wanted etc
To an extent she is right. I told her it was done basically so why am I bothered by this? Everyone deals with things differently I guess. I’ve been struggling since dd and she seems to be doing just fine etc.
Anyways this will be a rocky road for me. While I’m deeply sad and hurt I will be ok. It’s hard to let go of someone that you love when deep down inside you know they aren’t good for you and will hurt you.
10 comments posted: Sunday, April 24th, 2022
Let the WW know
Last night after going out on a date I let my WW know that things just weren’t working for me anymore and that I wanted a legal seperation or a divorce. It was so hard to do because I really do love her and what I thought we had. If you read through my history you will see why I came to this conclusion
She has been so self absorbed though out this whole process and has been doing the minimum. It just sucks because although I know it’s the best decision for me it still hurts so badly. I love this woman so much but I just don’t feel the same and don’t want the patterns to keep repeating themselves. Any advice on how to get through this
7 comments posted: Sunday, April 24th, 2022
Made the decision to legally seperate or divorce.
So it’s been almost 6 months since dd. I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t want to pursue anymore. I live with my WW along with our two kids and being around her triggers me and makes me feel so uncomfortable. I still love her but she is not safe or good for me. I talked to my IC and she suggested that I tell her I want to seperate/divorce in the MC session. I am considering legal separation to see if time apart and living away from each other could help heal or maybe not go straight to divorce?
Has anyone ever gone this route?
How has your WS responded?
4 comments posted: Wednesday, April 20th, 2022
Mad and done
So 5 months or so after dd I’ve decided I am done. My WW has shown minimal commitment s d investment towards r. I’ve waited to see if she would i it iris try the hard conversations , read something without prompting, or check in in a sincere way. I feel she has zero idea how much her serial cheating behaviors have impacted me and our children. She needs to be right. She has to win. So I will give her the prize. A big fat ugly divorce. She has shown me who she is. If someone shows you who they are believe them the first time.
It’s so sad because we have two young children and I know that they have been impacted by over infidelity and will continue to be effected. Why can’t she read a book? Initiate a hard discussion? Own her shit?
She has been conspiring hurts snd saying they hurt I imposed on her I. The marriage is comparable to the hurt she had put on me. She says that she feels like she is being made out to be the bad guy. Well hello you cheated and broke your marital vows. You lied to my face for over two years. You sucked off your Ap and swallowed his load in the front seat of our car. The same seat your kid sits in. She sent graphic pics of her fingering herslef and pics of her vagina. Pics of her tits to s married msn. She tried to seduce s married man. I am done. Tonight I know I took all I can take. She kissed me good night and walked in the bedroom
with out saying I love you. I asked her why and if she was upset and she said she sits it every night and asked why I didn’t say it. She had this look if anger on her face and that was it. It was over right there. I asked her how she could lie and be so dishonest during her multiple affairs and she said she was angry.
Well she can take that anger , turn it sideways, and shove it straight up her ass
27 comments posted: Tuesday, April 19th, 2022
Seeking advice/ support
I am the BS and 5 months past dd. Things have been bumpy. Good days and bad days. I am in IC weekly , EMDR weekly and MC. MC was weekly but switched to bi-weekly. Ww had a pa and multiple Sexting partners. It was a shock to me as I had no clue.
I have ptsd from my past and this has really messed me up. I am seeing my doctor in a week or so to discuss antidrpressants.
Today in MC the therapist bright up that he felt I was stuck and he’s right. He shared how I keep bringing up things that have been spoken about several times in several ways. He didn’t bring it up in a bad way but just wanted to point it out
He is right. I feel like I am stuck. I’m not 100 percent sure I want to stay in the marriage. I am trying to talk things through but what my WW did is awful and terrible. I just don’t feel the same anymore towards her. She expressed remorse and says she owns her behaviors and actions. She expressed today that she feels like I am stuck because she believes that I believe how I hurt her throughout the marriage isn’t as bad or comparable to how she hurt me. I told her she is 100 percent right. I told her that she stepped out of the marriage instead of working on our issues etc.
She said she isn’t justifying what she did but doesn’t feel like I have compassion or empathy towards her. I did say and do some hurtful things in the marriage but never abuse. I was critical at times and she says controlling but never really brought it up to me.
Overall this leads me to believe that she doesn’t get it. She doesn’t get how badly she hurt me.
My therapist says to give it some time but she said most people would walk away but it’s my choice and she wants me to make it for the right reasons.
My WW is trying ,has been more communicative etc but I just don’t think she gets it or really understands how bad she hurt me. She says that she feels like she is the bad guy. In my mind she is in regards to her infidelity.
Any thoughts from the more experienced folks on here? Should I just remain patient and cut my losses and d? I really don’t know. If I had to decide today I would leave
21 comments posted: Saturday, April 16th, 2022
For those of you that have divorced or separated from someone who may be angry at the divorce did you take half of the savings prior to filing? All funds are joint and I am worried that as soon as I file, if that’s what I do, ww will become spiteful and drain the accounts
3 comments posted: Monday, March 28th, 2022
Seeking advice from those more experienced that me. Dd was November 2021. WW had a PA from spring 2019 . Then sexted 3 other men graphic stuff. For a period of time. She is in IC. I am in IC. Both in MC.
I suspected something was up in 2019 and 2020 because things seemed off. I asked if she was having an affair and she said no. In February 2021 I saw messages on Facebook on an iPad that were flirty in nature. I confronted. She said it was plutonic and basically lied. I learned in October 2021 this is one of the guys she was sexting.
There was a ton of trickle truthing, gaslighting, and deception.
While we were dating I discovered she was texting an ex about meeting up. We broke up and got back together ( major red flag) at the time I said no more contact or I’m done.
Then around 2015 I saw flirty messages with a male co-worker. Nothing major but we ended up in MC. I said anymore contact again. We are done
The two people above she remained in contact with . She was sexting the one we went to MC for and would text from time to time with the one we broke up over when we were dating.
All of this being said there is a long pattern of lies and exemption, gas lighting, etc. I don’t feel as though I know what is real anymore. I am trying to consider R but I’m very ambivalent.
She identified her whys and feels like now she is conscious of why she does those things she can change. I challenged that and said but you did know what you were doing was wrong and she acknowledged that.
I am really torn. I know it’s a decision I need to make. It’s a pattern that I dont know if she is capable of changing and I think so much damage has been done.
7 comments posted: Friday, March 25th, 2022
How to know?
Wanted to get some perspective from people that are fully committed and I a reconciliation. How did you know to go all in?
What made you decide to try and R?
How did you work through your ambivalence ?
I keep going back and forth like a yo-yo. Dd was November 2021. Part of me just wants to talk. Things just don’t feel the same to me anymore.
3 comments posted: Sunday, March 20th, 2022
Me 46(BS) and 45(WW) are in MC and both in IC. DD was early November 2021. Short term Ea/pa in 2019 and then multiple sexting partners etc. I was trickle truthed for about a week and then demanded a written timeline/confession of everything or said I was gone. Well I got it. This all came to light after discovering nasty pics of WW on the computer that were in the cloud.
I was totally floored and devastated. Still am. To make matters worse this rekindled all of the emotional, physical, and sexual abuse from my childhood that I never really faced. Needless to say I’m a mess. I lost 20lbs the first month, was barely sleeping, and almost not functioning. I snapped out of it and got in to IC. Started working out, and trying to be in the present. I’ve read tons of books almost obsessively.
My WW has been pretty supportive but I don’t think she fully understands my pain. She has taken steps to help me but I know it’s on me to heal. She has shown remorse and some empathy but I don’t feel enough.
I vaccilate between wanting to divorce and wanting to reconcile. It can change hour to hour and day to day.
We had issues in our marriage prior to the A. I was highly critical and didn’t feel cared for. She felt controlled criticized and hurt. She has taken responsibility for her actions and acknolwedged the affair was her choice and said it was a maladaptive coping skill etc. she identified her whys etc.
But here I am not fully committed to Full on R. Part of me wants to try but part of me is scared. This has been the worst trauma of my life and I don’t even feel like I know who I am anymore.
Is this normal? From what I’ve read in the literature and on here it is but I feel like I’m in constant limbo. If I had to choose today I would go.
I also have two young kids.
Just putting this out there. It just sucks. This is my second marriage and I never saw this coming.
25 comments posted: Sunday, March 6th, 2022
So here is my story. I learned that my wife had an affair which started in the summer of 2020 and ended of February of 2021. Back story here. I noticed a new guy on her Facebook page commenting a lot on her posts and asked who he was. She said he was a friend from HS. Then in October I saw that she had screen shot a text from me and circled a comment in red. I asked her what that was and why she did that and she said she was going to show it to me because it upset her and made her feel rushed. Fast forward to February 2021 I see a bunch of messages on her iPad from him and he made a comment about him holding his coffee and keeping his fingers warm and said that will have to do until we can cuddle. I immediately confronted my wife and asked if she was seeing him. She adamantly denied this and I asked her to cease all contact and supposedly she did. I questioned her several times after that about their relationship and she said he was just a HS friend and nothing more. I suspected she was lying to me. She elected that she could have friends etc which is true .
Fast forward to last Tuesday : I am on our computer looking through old pics while our cleaning lady was cleaning our home. I see several graphic nude images of my wife and screen images she must have screen shotted. Talking about sex , birth control. He said come and fu$& me. She asked if he ever used a toy etc. you get the point. Images of breast’s , self digital penetration etc. I was floored. Then I saw one of the messages and he said it’s going to be hard to behave on Monday. I immediately confronted my wife and she then admitted they were sexting. I asked what he meant by Monday. At first she said she didn’t know and then said they met for lunch once. I asked if their was sexual contact and she said no. I was floored
Fast forward to the Saturday after Tuesday and I asked her for her phone and told her I was going to request all her Facebook messages which I did. I asked if I was going to learn anything new. She began to cry and said there was another guy she used to work with that she was messaging for a couple weeks. There was only one appropriate conversation about porn.
So here I am. Feeling hurt and destroyed. My world is upside down. She states she wants to work through this. We saw a MC yesterday but I don’t think I’m ready. Seeing a IC tomorrow. Just wanted to share.
I feel like I was gaslighted, manipulated and lied to over a year. I list all trust and respect for her. We have young kids as well. It really is hard.
87 comments posted: Tuesday, November 9th, 2021