gmc, thanks for sharing the painful details of your H's suicide attempt. What an absolute nightmare and another layer of mindf*ck for you. As to having no clue he had that in him, it is maybe part of the package of all the things they do that they don't think they have in them, like cheating, lying, living a double life....
Honestly one of the things that is making R harder for me as I push for what I want/need/deserve in order to heal and stay is seeing how much more is going on under the surface of my H than I knew, or maybe more than he is able to process in a healthy or mature manner. I have had a few scary glimpses behind the curtain of my normally rock solid, steady unflappable man, both the angry one who won't be cornered during a conversation, and the desperate one who can't control the situation around him. Everything is internalized, and it took a lot for him to even admit he was struggling and hurting and crazy too. He said that when I talk to him about his A, usually trying to clarify or sift the lies from the truth of the year plus of trickle truth, that I make him overload and static fills his brain and he can't even figure out what words to use. I have a ridiculous command of the English language and use ALL the words I know and it that plus the reality jolt of admitting what he has done and how effed the situation is overwhelm him maybe? That plus my unchecked emotions, mostly sorrow with a splash of resentment overload him too. He can't handle his system overload with talking or distractions like I do, so he has to shut down so he doesn't do something desperate. I'm trying to pay attention, because I have to worry about his limitations and damage now too. Which kind of makes sense, because his limits and damage are what brought us to this point and brought me to this website.
Maybe it's a personality type thing, where they are so buttoned up and unable to deal with their emotions and the consequences of their actions that they go lizard brain and instead of fight or flight, they go temporarily insane. I have had suicidal thoughts, but they come on slowly and have specific triggers and reasons. Maybe some people just freak out when forced to face their emotions, demons or whatever and they hit an eject button they didn't know was there? Me, I analyze everything. It took a long time to realize how much of what I was doing was fight, flight or freeze. They should add freak out to that list....
Just wanted to say that I've been scared a few times when realizing he's not as strong or stable as I always assumed and that I tread lighter now because that's how I am conditioned to interact in my marriage now. The list of accommodations keeps growing and my resentment embers glow too. I have to moderate when I talk, how I talk, what words or phrases I use so I don't set him off. It's like petting a dog that bites randomly, I'm on guard now in year three. Years one and two I was reacting, venting and just being 100% however I felt or needed to be at the moment. I can't do that now, because it is risky and I know what the outcome will be - anger, stonewalling, silence or him asking if he should just leave for good. I push too hard and he thinks giving up is the right answer. I hope we are past the point of him making crazy decisions as the crisis stage is behind us, but I'm still in the wreckage stage, and still in the mindset that if he could do some more work on himself to understand the connection between emotion and action, then I would have some stable ground to stand on.
Merti, I'm sorry for your membership in this club. I can't wrap my brain around the good/bad person question. I just want to know if I am dealing with honesty or lies now. I have to know who this person is or has become and if they are in control of themselves now. That your WH is continuing his A and dragging you along with him makes me both sad and mad for you. As long as he tries to stay married to you and continue his affair, he is just plain bad. For us, I don't care about the larger circles of other people as comparison, or other facets of his life where he does good things because this is not about the other facets of life, this is about us, about morality, integrity, marriage, trust, friendship, loyalty, and our spouses have done very badly where it matters most to us. I remember after the first discovery, and the lies that kept unravelling, I told him that if he were anyone else, I'd be too disgusted to stay in the same room with him, let alone try to stay married. At the core, his choices and behavior are repulsive to me on a fundamental level and maybe that's why I struggle so much. Good/Bad? I just want to know who he really is and what he really thinks and feels. Maybe when he figures it out he will share it with me. Hugs.
Wise, I'm with you. If he can't try harder, I'm gonna quit trying. And if I quit trying there is nothing worth staying for.
Dranth, I relate to much of what you said. My WH actually told me his lta was a win-win for everyone, believes he loved me the same all the way through and that his A had no impact on his happy marriage. yup, he believed we were happily married and i was happy with the scraps i was getting. And I feel a special level of stupid in hindsight too, but i comfort myself with the fact that the reason I was able to be deceived is because at my core i am an honest and trusting person who had no basis to suspect the level of lies and deceit that were surrounding me. I'm more mad at myself for the stupid long process of discovery that I allowed to happen because I had not found this support site yet. When I did, I was in crisis, and i still couldn't process the truth that the kind souls here were gifting me with. The will to believe in something against all evidence can be hard to overcome.
Lost one, spot on. Entitlement and rewriting stories so they are not the villain is so much a part of my WH's story. And assuming our partners were on the same moral page as us was maybe our first mistake. I have peeled back so many onion layers on my WH that I know now how much i was projecting onto him, and how much he kept hidden. Going through a false recovery with fake remorse, gaslighting, promises of love and fidelity and a marriage reboot to authenticity and honesty, being led to believe it was a short, long ago affair, while being looked straight in the eyes and told there were no more lies and no more secrets, while he was still actively meeting and having sex with her and hysterically bonding with me is my particular horror story to process. I asked after the truth came out, why he would even choose to stay in a relationship filled with lies and deceit. He says because he loves me. Such empty words now.