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For Those Who Found Out Years Later

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Thescreaminside posted 3/24/2018 10:09 AM

I've tried to get phone record but they only hold them for a couple of years.
I have access to all WS's passwords.
I downloaded a facebook archive from that time but there wasn't anything.
Word with friends was another app they used and again because they had kept playing I cann't go far enough back.

NewWorld posted 3/24/2018 10:13 AM

Thanks Lawyerman. Sorry to find you in this club. Yes, rewriting the last 51 years of your life
is gut wrenching. "What kind of person does that", a broken one. Thanks to SI I can look back
and see all the signs and symptoms. Back in the early seventies nobody understood those
terms and concepts. However, I did do the 180. By that I mean I went 180 degrees opposite
of what I should've done. I read stories in JFO sometimes. I listen to some of these guys and
I think "how could you be that naive". Then it occurs to me I was the same way. I didn't get
it. There was no SI, no healing library, no resources period.

Regarding selfish compartmentalization, you're 100% correct. How do I know? Because I
belong to an unusual group called Madhatters who found out years later. No place for these
people to exclusively post. Guess there's not enough of them. I know what it's like being a
BS & WS.

Clarification: The new marriage I'm trying to build is with the same woman. Considering the
category we're in, it makes it twice as hard. Like you, I now see my wife as she was. I don't
subscribe to the notion of "once a cheater, always a cheater". My wife hasn't cheated in 44
years, been 33 years for me. She's not the same person, nor am I. But there's a lot of work
left to do, thanks to decades of rugsweeping.

Sounds like your xww is trying to rewrite her history too (at your expense).
Wishing you peace in the midst of insanity.

Lawyerman posted 3/24/2018 13:45 PM

Good luck with that.

I actually think that WW and myself would have a chance in the future. I need to get rid of the marriage. She can't see why it is significant but to me, it totally is. Maybe tokenism but it was a massive decision for me and she threw it in my face within 2 years. So that has to go. That legal document has to be torn up and burned. For my sanity.

Then there is just her and I. I love her still but she will have to go a hell of a long way to win back the true me. I don't see it happening but will give her a run at it. I'm not even sure she will like the true me which is fair enough. At the moment she wants to 'fix US' which of course means me doing everything she says all the time. Blah.

NewWorld posted 3/24/2018 20:38 PM

Lawyerman, I completely agree. My wife couldn't understand why I consider that marriage
dead. She didn't agree with me but she does now. It took years before I saw enough
remorse in both of us to believe we had a chance at reconciliation. A lot of SI, IC, EMDR,
book reading and soul searching. We're still not there, but it's much better. We understand
each other in a way we never did before. IMO without remorse and a real desire to sincerely put in the time and effort to change, there would be no chance to save this relationship that's
over a half century old.

Does your wife not get that "US" didn't cheat. Not owning your stuff is a non-starter when
considering R. Maybe IC would give her a clearer perspective of why this happened and
what her responsibilities going forward are. Is she open to counseling?

Lawyerman posted 3/26/2018 07:17 AM

She is doing IC but I think really to talk about me and the kids. Not to dig into her own stuff. She has a perfect right to be damaged by her up-bringing but then so do I. I think, in my mind, she was my saviour from my upbringing. She was the one that would care for me whatever, like a parent should. We would be completely loyal and true forever. That didn't work out and maybe that's not even realistic? . That's what I have learned from my IC. She needs to learn too but I have little faith to be honest.

I spent an awful lot of our relationship being starved of physical intimacy for one reason or another and I need a lot of it. If there was ever a reason to cheat, that would surely be it. But I didn't. I stood by her. I put up with it and I suffered and suffered because I had made a vow. To now know that she cheated during one of those times (maybe others) is just the nail in the coffin. It's just too much.

NewWorld posted 3/26/2018 10:40 AM

I put my wife on a pedestal. I created unrealistic expectations. I attributed qualities to her
she never possessed. I needed to believe those things, even in the face of contradictory
evidence. Everything that happened in our relationship, I saw through the lens of
unrealistic expectations. After Dday I had to get fitted for a new pair of glasses. Glasses
that saw things as they really were. It took a long time to get adjusted to those glasses. But,
clarity finally came.

RE: " Being starved of physical intimacy". Been there (years). I wish I had handled it like you
did. But, I'm ashamed to say I found validation outside the marriage.

Sometimes IC can take quite a while. Maybe she'll get it in time. Maybe she'll eventually show
true remorse. It's possible. I admire you for keeping your vows in the midst of it all.

Hickoryapple posted 5/5/2018 22:47 PM

What the hell? Found out about then partner, now husband, cheating about five days ago. (thread in 'just found out') He's been hiding it for 18years! So according to popular wisdom, if it takes twice the time of the affair+cover up to recover, that's 36 years!! Please tell me that's not right!

MrMagnolia posted 5/6/2018 00:44 AM

It's not right Hickory. It just depends on you what you need to heal and if you decide to stay how much your WS does to help you. Sorry, this happened.

Hickoryapple posted 5/6/2018 02:52 AM

Thanks MrMagnolia. I thought I may as well give up before I started if I was going to be well on the way to decrepitude before things might have a chance of improving!

Are there any specific differences in how to deal with finding out so long after the fact rather than at the time? I've started reading through this forum and hope to pick up some pointers, but there's just so many posts... V depressing to see right now.

steadychevy posted 5/6/2018 07:34 AM

There's all kinds of rules of thumb about how long it takes to heal from the trauma of betrayal, Hickory. Another one is one year for every 5 years of marriage. A very common one often put forward here on SI is 2 to 5 years. None of them are laws. They are sayings to indicate this isn't a sprint. It's a marathon.

Different people will heal at different rates. Those most invested in the marriage will probably take longer. The more you invest the more precious and the greater the loss.

Healing isn't in a straight line. There will be the proverbial roller coaster with vicious ups and downs and hard turns. Healing is also gradual for many. It just gets slowly better with time and work. Hence, another common saying - time, the ugly word time.

All of the suggestions of how long it will take to get through (note: get through, not over, around - through) the trauma are based on some reality. Your own internal calendar will provide your guideline and not a calendar on the wall.

IMO, healing doesn't start at DDay. It starts when out of adultery whether in R or S/D. And healing doesn't mean you never think about it anymore. There are long term members here on SI who have either R or D a long time ago and are in a very good place who get "triggered" from time to time. It's just that the event doesn't have the same effect or last as long.

Finding out years later doesn't diminish the betrayal. It is brand new, like it was yesterday, to the betrayed. There's no sentence reduction for time served.

Go up into the yellow box top left and click on the Healing Library. There's lots of good stuff. Always take the best and leave the rest. Sometimes the messages that seem the harshest carry gems.

I'm sorry you're in need of being here. SI is the best club you never wanted to join. Stick around. Use the members as a sounding board, vent, scream, whatever it takes.

ETA: It takes what it takes. Don't rush it or set a deadline. Any pushing down to hurry it up will cause an eruption later on and probably actually slow the process. Do the work for you by facing it head on. It's an investment in you. You're worth it.

[This message edited by steadychevy at 7:47 AM, May 6th (Sunday)]

Hickoryapple posted 5/6/2018 16:47 PM

Thanks steady. My major concern about starting to work through it right now is that after 4 days of q&a, he's now off abroad for six weeks. Being able to compartmentalize things easily (by all accounts) he'll work and socialism, leave any emails or messages I send until convenient to him, while I'm still stewing at home, just getting through it, with the kids. Who will want to talk to him, of course. I feel greatly resentful that I am forced to do everything myself, carry on as normal, and arrange contact with him for the kids. While it doesn't look like it's affecting him much at all. He's had 18 years to deal with it, so he's not all of a sudden going to feel so guilty he doesn't go out and have a good time after work, in an exciting foreign country. I'm hurting, and he'll be having a good time. I want to see him struggling too, but it just isn't going to happen. And that feels like he doesn't really care, is just biding his time while things settle around him.

Hickoryapple posted 5/7/2018 04:32 AM

Ha, just read that last post back. Obviously WH will drink and socialise while away, not drink and socialism!

steadychevy posted 5/7/2018 07:48 AM

I understood. I often get wrong words or spellings. I don't know if it's me or autocorrect.

BetrayedInUT posted 6/26/2018 15:07 PM

Word with friends was another app they used and again because they had kept playing I cann't go far enough back.


I was able to recover chats from words with friends by analyzing backups from her iphone that were taken during the time. Theres a couple free tools that allow this. If you're interested in more detail PM me.

I would say be careful with this though. I became obsessed for three weeks going over old messages and scrutinizing everything on those old phone backups. While doing this I wasn't able to make any progress as every time I found something new it reopened the wound

That said it was helpful to me on one level, I was able to verify that many of the things she told me about the A were true, and I din't find evidence of any other partners. YMMV

[This message edited by BetrayedInUT at 3:09 PM, June 26th (Tuesday)]

Bestthing posted 6/26/2018 17:37 PM

My WH confesses 1 year after he broke up with her the third time only to have me discovered that they were still in text/phone contact 6 times in the year before Dday. On one hand, I am glad he tried to break it off. On the other hand, it hurts to realize that she had such a pull on him that he relapsed again and again. The last year after they stopped seeing each other was the hardest to take because he became such an ass with his guilt and secrets. While he was having the affair, I felt he loved me. It was after he ended it that he became a jerk. Itís almost like I was a barrier to his happiness. The fact he hid this secret from me for 3 years (and had cheated before) makes it impossible for me to trust him ever again. At first I was grateful that he spared me from finding out during his infatuation phase, but now I think the deceit afterward is actually worse. My last D Day was 6 months ago. Can someone comment on whether trust returns and if not how does a marriage without trust look like? The OW was such a pro that their text cannot be retrieved. She had security rules that my WH followed. If he wants to hide, he can. i Donít want to live the rest of my life snooping around or is that a reality I should accept?

scott12 posted 6/27/2018 11:10 AM


[This message edited by SI Staff at 2:21 PM, June 27th (Wednesday)]

Hesaliar posted 6/28/2018 13:30 PM

Bestthing, my wh claims to have been transparent in the last 17 years since his affairs ended. I'm only 7 months since discovery. I don't trust him. I don't believe transparency in this digital age exists. He travels for work so I will never have full trust in him again. I'm also struggling with how that can work.
There are a few on this thread who have rebuilt so it can be done. The lies are indeed the big hurdle.

iamanidiot posted 8/14/2018 03:48 AM

I posted in another forum and it got me thinking.....

My wife cheated on me with 4xOM over 30 years ago.
She kept that secret, closed the lid on that box, moved on with life.
She became the best wife, partner, mother to our children that I could ever have hoped for.
I only just found out 3 years ago.
Reconciliation for me has been about reconciling myself with what she did, figuring out the past.
What she did was really bad. Since I found out, there has not been a day that is not a trigger.
Not a moment in bed or a kiss or a cuddle or a drive in the car or a bath/shower, anything.... Because with 4xAP, they did it all.

A big part of the BS moving forward and learning to accept is to experience remorse & empathy from the WS.

After 30 plus years of her 'getting on with our life' she used that chance to BECOME a great wife & mother.
Of course now she is embarrassed & sad about what she did and sad that I hurt.

But, that does not mean she is able to show remorse or empathy of my feelings of being cheated on.
Or understand the extent of the pain, the anger, the absolute total DISGUST !!
Or even how angry I am with myself, for letting it all happen under my nose, that I was so gullible!!!

I get 'it was such a long time ago, can't you just get over it and move on'.
'Why do you want to think back to that time?'
'Rather remember the good years in-between'!

Approaching 60 - she cannot understand the mindset of the 19-25 year old that she was back then. For her there is no interest to try to figure out her why's etc. From her side, 'she moved on' a long time ago and just lived with it!

It was so long ago that the facts are blurred and the memories are indistinct for both of us. This makes it difficult to start any conversation. There are so many 'I don't remembers'.

So I am left with having to reconcile myself with what she did and that I was always that 2nd choice for her, the dependable one.

NewWorld posted 8/14/2018 12:51 PM

Hi Iamanidiot. I can relate to your story somewhat. I found out 40 years after the fact. She
slept with 6 OM and cheated with 8 more w/o intercourse. That all ended in 1974. Since
then she's been a great and supportive wife. She confessed to me on 2/10/11. Took 3 years
after D-day #1 to get the other 50% of the story (TT, minimizing, gaslighting, etc.). Let me
say up front my behavior was no better than hers (we're madhatters). My affairs ended in
1985. We both rugswept it all those years. Point I'm getting at is, like your wife mine told
me I needed to get over it, it was a long time ago, and my favorite was " I just wanna say
grow up". You see, after D-day #1 she told me but I didn't tell her anything, until she said
that(about 2 weeks later). Then I thought "she thinks this is nothing and I need to grow up" let's see how grown
up she is. So I unloaded everything. It was extensive. Guess what, no more "just need to get
over it and grow up, it was a long time ago, remember the good years, etc". Now she
began to understand the nightmare of betrayal to that degree. It's the only advantage I've
discovered to being a madhatter. We're 7.5 years out from that now. As you say, the toughest
part is not being able to remember details important to each of us.
As far as being the second choice, I felt like that for a long time. After all when she came
back to me in '74 she admitted she didn't love me. How can you not think of yourself as #2.
As we continued to live life for the next 40 years our love for each other grew. So much so
that before D-day I didn't think I was capable of loving anybody that much. I was and am confident that I'm not #2 anymore. If I've been #2 for 40 years she's certainly had plenty of time
to find #1. I don't know your wife but I bet if you could get in her head you'd see your not #2.
Just my 2 cents. There's a certain momentum in marriages that got right side up and stayed
that way for 30 or in my case 40 years. Yes, no matter how long ago the betrayal is fresh when
you first find out. But with decades of fidelity on your side, it can be a leg up in reconciliation.
Just depends how you want to look at it.

iamanidiot posted 8/15/2018 02:03 AM

To be honest, I know that I am No1 NOW and probably have been for the last 30 years!
But at that time I WAS the fall back guy, the one that would always be there when it was over. I was the 2nd choice to whatever moved her world. All the time I was doing whatever it took to keep us together.

Your previous post

I put my wife on a pedestal....physical intimacy. Been there (years).
is exactly what I did, exactly how I feel.

Right now I'm just not "there" yet. Somehow I'm not able to let go of the past.
I think 'pissed off' is what I call where I am.
It's like I'm standing at a door but I can't find the key to get on with my life.
What is that key?
More questions, more answers, time, forgiveness?
Getting over the unfairness of it all?
How do you do that?
And when I do move on, how do I do that without feeling bitter & twisted every day?

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