You answered your own question brother:
Is that the price all the BS has to pay (even the ones who never Rd like me. Yes I am married to a wonderful woman, but I know she is capable of cheating, because I once believed my X-F was "incapable" of that.
Unfortunately there isn’t any way to really know for your WS has experienced “permanent change”. I’m not sure there even is such a thing as permanent change. The only thing I know for sure about people is they are always changing. Sometimes for good sometimes for ill. Sometimes forward progress sometimes backward.
But that’s true for everyone, WS, BS, and people who have never been touched, so far at least, by infidelity. So living with R isn’t all that different than living with any relationship after experiencing infidelity. It means living with the knowledge that this other person can hurt you, just like anybody you let close to you can hurt you. Reconcile or divorce that fact is simply incontrovertible.
End of the day, R or D, the only way to innoculate yourself from heartache is to close your heart off to anyone and everyone.
Which is a shitty way to live.
So you take your shot. D and eventually maybe try again with some new risky person or R and try again with the devil you know. I suppose they both have their pros and cons. At the end of the day I decided that it was my turn to be selfish. I would decide which course to take based solely on what I wanted and only on what I wanted. Fuck vows and commitments or preserving the family unit... what did I want.
And it turns out that what I wanted was my wife... provided of course she could get her head back out of her ass and convince me that she had gotten her shit together. It seems at this point that she has done both those things. But I’m not foolish enough to think for one second that I have any guarantees. I can’t see inside her head to know what’s really going on in there and, even if I could there are no guarantees that shit wouldn’t change tomorrow. That’s the nature of the beast. You pays your money and you takes your chances.
That’s not to say I’m always entirely sanguine with my choices. I’ll be perfectly honest with you a, recent post in wayward bothered me a lot. And having that followed by WAL’s announcement (WAL you already know how I feel about you man... what an important part you played in my healing... I’m not gonna go into that here, I know that you know. I fuckin love you man) the combo of those two posts was like a one-two punch to the ballsack for me this week. To be perfectly honest I haven’t been taking those two pieces of information real well.
And it’s not because it’s busting some fantasy bubble I have about R, or destroying some illusion I have about guarantees. I know there aren’t any guarantees. And like Tred and Stolenyears and Sisoon all so elegantly stated: if my wife falls back, it will hurt like hell.... but it won’t destroy me the way it almost did the first time.
Not because I’ve closed off my heart to loving her, but because I’ve opened my heart to loving myself.
I know that sounds fucking new age and touchy feely, but it’s true. The HT before Dday didn’t like himself very much, I depended in part on this image of myself as a husband to bolster and validate my self esteem and self worth. My wife’s utter rejection of that image tore down the foundations I had built so much of my identity upon. It almost destroyed me.
But I’ve rebuilt and remodeled since then. These days my self esteem and sense of self worth are internally generated. They can’t be destroyed by external factors because they come from within. These days the only person that can destroy my self esteem is myself. And I keep a close check on that fucking jackass, whip him into shape whenever he starts slipping.
No, I think the thing that bothers me more about these stories of relapses is more this unfocused anger I feel on behalf of the betrayed. I feel angry that their gift of R was treated so shabbily. And I feel angered because I know that any WS that put in the time here on SI damn well knows the damage, damn well knows the pain, damn well knows the fucking theft of another human beings time energy and potential that they are perpetrating.
And they do it anyway.
I have a hard time with that. I think if I am guilty of having any sort of fantasy bubble at all. It is of stubbornly continuing to believe that people are still essentially good at heart and that they couldn’t possibly behave so badly if they really and truly understood the damage and pain that their actions are causing to other human beings.
And yet here we are. Fuck.
Like I said, having a tough time this week. Not because I am afraid of suffering another Dday. But because I’m afraid that people in general may just be worse than I wanted to believe.
Sorry guys. Didn't mean to be a downer, just processing.
WAL I love you man.
Losfer, great to see you man love you too.
Tred, I just have ambiguously sexual feelings about you... don’t make it weird.
Loukas long time no talk, keep up the good fight.
I know I missed a couple but I love you guys too. WAL always brings the old Betrayed Men’s crowd out of hiding. Bummer it was under less than ideal circumstances.
Onward and upward,