Newest Member: loyaltylost

I Can Relate :
BS Questions for WS - Part 14

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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 6:42 PM on Monday, November 15th, 2021

Hi NMFR,

Resentment played a huge part for me. There was a lot of abuse in my marriage (going both ways- my yelling and out of control temper, his stonewalling, withdrawal and financial abuse). BH refused to work on any of it with me, labeled me the problem and wouldn't seek help. Eventually I just checked out. Then he started comparing me to one of my good friends and encouraging me to hang out with her more to learn how to dress, mother, cook, decorate, pray and in general be a better "wife" to him. He also was pushing HARD for me to get breast implants. He wanted me to be more like HER, less like me. So yeah, that really amped up the resentment to rage. It was after being treated like that for over a year and a half that I decided I would completely shut him out until the kids were out of the nest and I could divorce him. Except, nature abhors a vacuum. After a year and a half of deep loneliness and despair of ever being loved by anyone, I decided to fill my emptiness with an A. AP at work started being kind, considerate, went out of his way to do nice things for me, complemented me, told me what a good mom I was, told me how beautiful I was, etc. And I fell for it barf

In the end, I didn't necessarily do it to hurt him. I just wanted out so I could be loved by SOMEONE. I respected him as a dad, worker and member of the community, but I had zero respect for him as a husband or friend.

posts: 205   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8698555
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NotMyFirstRodeo ( member #75220) posted at 7:04 PM on Monday, November 15th, 2021

Before your A, did you act on your resentment for him? Being brutally honest about it...were you kind, gentle, loving and respectful towards him or did your resentment affect how you treated him? What did your BH say about how you treated him during that time?

And after your betrayal, did the resentment remain? Do you feel he got what he deserved? Does he know how you used your resentment to justify A?

Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later that debt is paid.

posts: 258   ·   registered: Aug. 19th, 2020
id 8698558
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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 7:48 PM on Monday, November 15th, 2021

Hi NMFR,

I was not a healthy person to be around for my BH. I was as patient and understanding as I could be, which was hardly at all. I was angry with him much the time. Would complain to him about how unhappy I was, and then complain to my friends about it. He said it was very difficult to be around me as I was not open, positive or loving to him. The only thing he enjoyed doing with me was sex (which also increased my resentment). He wanted more intimacy and companionship, but thought that the way to get it was by criticizing me and comparing me to another woman he liked better. So yeah, I would lash out and yell or shut him down when he requested me to do things like wear revealing clothes, hair highlights or boob jobs. Or he would ask for things like sports cars and expensive watches or building a movie theater in the basement. And then I would yell again. It was a hot mess and we were both very unhappy.

It really boils down to: my shitty behavior would trigger his shitty behavior which triggered my shittier behavior... on and on and on. I allowed his hurtful treatment of me to justify my hurtful treatment of him. Eventually, as I said above in response to another poster, I walled off and wanted out. Didn't want to hurt him any more, just wanted my own pain to stop. AP was a drug for me to cope with my pain, not as a "get revenge on BH for all the pain he's caused." It was an exit affair, not a revenge affair.

After the affair, it took almost 2 years before I could start to actually believe he loved me for myself and begin dropping the resentment. It flares up from time to time, but for the most part is gone. I'm setting my boundaries on how I expect to be treated and thus have less to resent. I've learned to be assertive and not reactive and have (mostly) ended yelling. I've learned not to react from my gut triggers and to ask questions first. He's been doing so much to change the way he approaches myself (and our kids- he was very much a perfectionist with them). We're working together as a team to parent the kids now instead of the "BH blows up, mom does cleanup and re-enables the kids" shit storm we were in.

In all, yeah, I sucked as a wife before. It took a very long time and a lot of work on both our parts before I could drop my resentment.

posts: 205   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8698567
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Chaos ( member #61031) posted at 6:21 PM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

For those Waywards Reconciled or working on Reconciliation - how do you feel when you hear of another marriage that crumbles/ends due to one of the partner's infidelity?

BS-me/WH-4.5yrLTA Married 2+ decadesChildren (1 still at home)Multiple DDays w/same AP until I told OBSBrandishing a sword, channeling my inner Inigo Montoya and saying "Hello–My name is Chaos–You f***ed my husband-Prepare to Die!"

posts: 3328   ·   registered: Oct. 13th, 2017   ·   location: East coast
id 8700395
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ff4152 ( member #55404) posted at 8:51 PM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

Hi Chaos,

For me, it breaks my heart and makes me angry. I'm sad for the BS because they not only have to deal with the D but also the pain of the A. I'm angry at the WS for the same reasons but also a little sad for them as well. Sad because they were so broken that they destroyed their marriage and threw away their integrity for what amounted to nothing.

Me -FWS

posts: 1878   ·   registered: Sep. 30th, 2016
id 8700420
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BraveSirRobin ( member #69242) posted at 11:04 PM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

how do you feel when you hear of another marriage that crumbles/ends due to one of the partner's infidelity?

It depends on how the partners handle themselves after D-Day. If the WS honestly tries to do the work, I feel sad and compassionate towards both parties that it wasn't enough. If the WS acts entitled and blameshifty, I add frustration and anger towards the WS that they didn't pull their head out of their ass. If the BS uses it to justify abusive behavior or an RA, I rally on behalf of the WS, because two wrongs don't make a right. And on rare occasions, I'm grateful to see the marriage end, because it was one of those toxic soups that brought no benefit to ether partner.

[This message edited by BraveSirRobin at 11:06 PM, Friday, November 26th]

WW/BW 50s (Me)
BH/WH 50s (TimeSpiral)

posts: 2140   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8700437
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Grieving ( new member #79540) posted at 12:25 AM on Saturday, November 27th, 2021

Was anyone here in what they considered a happy marriage when they got involved in an emotional and sexual affair? If so, how did that happen, and how did you justify it in your mind?

posts: 18   ·   registered: Oct. 30th, 2021
id 8700448
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axj131 ( new member #70614) posted at 1:08 AM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

@Grieving:
For me, I had recently lost a job where I had a fair amount of power. I was in control of millions of dollars and over 100 employees. I abused that power and was forced to resign from my dream job (or so I thought at the time). I craved the control over others and additional admiration - more than just from my family.
I eventually met someone that admired my abilities gave me a lot of attention.
Through compartmentalization and the overwhelming need for additional admiration I pursued this person and initiated the adultery.
I look back on that time in my life and realize how broken I was. My priorities were completely skewed. I thought power and admiration from as many sources as possible brought happiness.
Three years later, I have a good job, not in charge of anyone, barely have a budget to worry about and no longer in the local news. My priorities are my kids and wife. I work to repair the relationship with my wife and kids. I try to give them what they need and cheer them on in their activities. Instead of going to events and treating it like a chore because it didn’t have anything to do with me, I find joy in what they need and love watching them grow. I try to be present for my wife. There are many bad days, trigger days, traumas that I need to support her through that I caused. I’m usually not very successful at that, but continue trying my best.

At work, I find joy in the quietness of my position and doing things to quietly help the company. I don’t have the need or desire to be the focus of attention.

posts: 15   ·   registered: May. 23rd, 2019
id 8701707
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cheatstroke ( member #67708) posted at 5:43 AM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

Regarding BS behavior after D-Day, where do WS draw the line between BS behavior that is considered consequences of the A and BS behavior that is considered abusive or too extreme?

Conversely, where do WS draw the line between BS behavior that is considered normal and BS behavior that is considered not extreme enough, i.e. the BS doesn't seem to care, or just wants to rugsweep? I've heard stories where the WS files for divorce because the BS didn't get mad enough.

posts: 164   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2018
id 8701735
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GraceLoves ( member #78769) posted at 11:19 AM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

A question for WS on the difference between real and false admiration.

Your BS, presumably if you have an M worth saving, had admiration for you based on knowing you a long time, good characteristics you'd shown such as love, honesty, kindness, support and a shared life.

Your AP, presumably, met a need for "admiration" in you, but presumably this was based on knowing you a short time, with sneaking around and lies and dishonesty and you showing poor character.

Do you, with hindsight, see the AP's admiration was not worth having, and that it lost you the admiration of your spouse, which was more genuine and founded on real things?

BW - seperated since Nov 21
DDay 1 - Nov 20, LTA during LDR. DDay 2 - Feb 21, ONS with AP. WH will maintain we were separated
DDay 3 - June 21, discovered WH had exchanged closure emails with AP

posts: 133   ·   registered: May. 9th, 2021   ·   location: London
id 8701763
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MrsWalloped ( member #62313) posted at 1:45 PM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

Hi cheatstroke.

Regarding BS behavior after D-Day, where do WS draw the line between BS behavior that is considered consequences of the A and BS behavior that is considered abusive or too extreme?

Conversely, where do WS draw the line between BS behavior that is considered normal and BS behavior that is considered not extreme enough, i.e. the BS doesn't seem to care, or just wants to rugsweep? I've heard stories where the WS files for divorce because the BS didn't get mad enough.


This is an interesting question. In my personal experience, my BH had a lot of anger. A lot. And while he would vent and didn't hold back from expressing his feelings about me and my A, he never truly crossed a line that objectively would be considered extreme or abusive. He never was physically abusive. But maybe my point of view was skewed. I took whatever he dished out as a sort of penance and tbh I was happy in a way when he yelled or vented because he was engaging with me. Most of the time he stayed away from me and we sort of coexisted. There was no hysterical bonding. So showing emotion was a positive in my book and if that meant him yelling or whatever, I was okay with that.

There's also this weird psyhological dynamic. You know what you did was horrible and really unforgivable, and there's no way you can make amends so any punishment you receive is in a strange way helpful. I had thoughts like "at least I can do this." I could be his verbal punching bag to let him release his anger and feel better.

Looking back, I don't think that's healthy, but it's totally understandable. And the line is different for everybody. But there was a point, not until much later, where we working at R where I started finding my voice and stood up for myself. It depended on the situation and what was being said, but if it went too far then I wouldn't be defensive or lash out and fight back, but I would excuse myself from the conversation and later, gently, bring up how that it wasn't helpful and while I undertood the pain and the desire to be hurtful to ease that pain, if we are in R then doing that is counterproductive to R.

A big challenege with the whole thing is that I had a really low self-esteem issue in general and having an A was an escapr from that, but after DDay, the A brought me much further down in my whole psyche. Hearing disparaging messages would make me sink much lower because they confirmed what I already knew in my head - that I was worthless and a failure and now a horrible person. Being left alone with my thoughts I'd go there, but hearing my BH say them was like a hammer nailing those messages down even further.

Anyway, that was a long way of saying it's normal and the line is different for everyone, but I don't think letting it go too far, which there mught be a tendenecy to do, is a healthy thing.

Your second question - The Plane of Lethal Flatness. A BS can go through this stage where they disassociate from their WS. It's normal. And the WS needs to be understanding, patient, and consistent in their messaging and expressing their desire to be with their BS. Depsite non-responses or disengagement, IMO the WS needs to fortify in their WS's mind that they are still there, they love their BS and want to be connected to their BS. Constant reinforcement. I think the wrong approach is to respond in kind and disengage back. That's a recipe for disaster if R is your goal.

Hope that helps!

Me: WW 47
My BH: Walloped 48
A: 3/15 - 8/15 (2 month EA, turned into 3 month PA)
DDay: 8/3/15
In R

posts: 726   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2018
id 8701785
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MrsWalloped ( member #62313) posted at 2:03 PM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

Hi GraceLoves.

Do you, with hindsight, see the AP's admiration was not worth having, and that it lost you the admiration of your spouse, which was more genuine and founded on real things?


Absolutely. I had the admiration of my BH and he would compliment me and do all those things, but in mind they didn't have value because he was my H and he was supposed to say those things so I discounted them. And while I wasn't looking to have an A, when somoene else said them, I soaked it up. But of course it was nonsense. A fantasy la-la land where real life didn't exist.

There are many thought processes that a WS goes through after DDay, depending on the state of their M and their relationship with their BS. I'm talking where the M is a good one and the WS actually, truly loves their BS. You have to come to terms with the fact that you had an A. You have to own what you did and that you literally destroyed your BS. You have to try to pick up the pieces of your broken family that you destroyed and somehow see what you can salvage, what you can put back together and what is gone forever. You have to be there for your BS, and try and help ease their pain and help them recover in whatever way you can, even though you were the one that caused the pain to begin with. And you have to deal with yourself. If you truly recognize that you did all this, then you need to work on yourself and figure out why and who you are and reconcile the image you may have had of yourself with the person who caused so much pain and hurt. And with all that destruction, you look at what you did it for? A fantasy? Some compliments and ego-kibbles? Sex? You did all of that and hurt the ones you love for nothing. And you have to somehow come to terms with that. Which, by the way, is why I never quite got the whole "you had an exciting A that you can look back on and treasure" comment. Looking back at my A makes me nauseous. It's not in isolation. It's coupled with everything that came after and is forever intertwined with the devestation I caused through having that A. And as you point out in your question, it was based on nothingness, particularly when you had a real relationship, based on things that matter, with someone you love and someone who loved you, and they were right in front of you all the time and you didn't realize just how precious that was until you destroyed it.

Me: WW 47
My BH: Walloped 48
A: 3/15 - 8/15 (2 month EA, turned into 3 month PA)
DDay: 8/3/15
In R

posts: 726   ·   registered: Jan. 17th, 2018
id 8701788
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GraceLoves ( member #78769) posted at 2:24 PM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

@mrswalloped thank you for answering.

My next question kind of leads on from the first. Which is *how your idea and understanding of love has changed from your experience?*

Not knowing how precious what you were destroying was, which my WS also says he felt, indicates a shift before / after on what love really means.

Which I've struggled with. The great human question. But I heard these words:

"I've destroyed myself. Torn my life down and for what? Walks? Compliments? A bit of drunken sex? It felt good for a time"

I'm just wondering at the understanding of love/ admiration and how the experience changes that.

BW - seperated since Nov 21
DDay 1 - Nov 20, LTA during LDR. DDay 2 - Feb 21, ONS with AP. WH will maintain we were separated
DDay 3 - June 21, discovered WH had exchanged closure emails with AP

posts: 133   ·   registered: May. 9th, 2021   ·   location: London
id 8701791
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BraveSirRobin ( member #69242) posted at 3:59 PM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

Was anyone here in what they considered a happy marriage when they got involved in an emotional and sexual affair? If so, how did that happen, and how did you justify it in your mind?

It happened very gradually. If you'd told me when I first met the OM that I would end up in bed with him and breaking my BH's heart, I'd have said you were insane. But over months, by degrees, I pushed the envelope a tiny step at a time. At first, it was just jokes and friendly conversation. Then it was light flirtation that I convinced myself was harmless. I justified what I was doing by focusing on what I wasn't doing. Waywards in denial use the words only, just, and at least I a lot. "It's only innuendo." Then, "it's only talk, it's not like I'm doing anything physical." And then...

Eventually, the moment came where I couldn't avoid how many broken boundaries were behind me. There was no way to minimize it anymore. That's when my rationalization flipped. Instead of justifying my behavior by how inconsequential it was, I told myself that I was already in such deep shit that escalating would only make it a little worse.

WW/BW 50s (Me)
BH/WH 50s (TimeSpiral)

posts: 2140   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8701808
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BraveSirRobin ( member #69242) posted at 5:35 PM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

Not knowing how precious what you were destroying was, which my WS also says he felt, indicates a shift before / after on what love really means.


There was a similar question in this thread about a year ago, asking if any WS believed they loved their BS during the A and what they thought that meant, so I hope it's ok to copy my reply.

If you're asking "Did you enjoy spending time with your BS, were they attractive to you, did you have great sex, did you miss them when they weren't around, did you like doing things to make them happy, did you still have dreams and plans for the future with them, was staying with them your Plan A," then the answer is yes.

If the question is "Did you have their back, did you keep your promises to them, did you respect their agency, did you put the needs of your relationship ahead of your own selfish desires, did your actions reflect genuine care for their well-being," then the answer is no.

You need all of these things for real love.

WW/BW 50s (Me)
BH/WH 50s (TimeSpiral)

posts: 2140   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8701821
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GraceLoves ( member #78769) posted at 11:05 PM on Tuesday, November 30th, 2021

@BSR, that's a really great post.

I remember years ago reading something online about soul mates, and someone said "I don't believe in soul mates, but if they exist then my H is my soulmate because we decided he would be. We went through good days, bad days, financial struggles, birth of kids, kind days, arguments, wild sex, tired sex, thousand of kisses, conversations and days and moments and he's my soulmate because we decided he would be".

That always stuck with me.

Infatuation and romance is only part of it, but also, like you say, the commitment to love and protect is also a huge part of what love is.

BW - seperated since Nov 21
DDay 1 - Nov 20, LTA during LDR. DDay 2 - Feb 21, ONS with AP. WH will maintain we were separated
DDay 3 - June 21, discovered WH had exchanged closure emails with AP

posts: 133   ·   registered: May. 9th, 2021   ·   location: London
id 8701882
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Grieving ( new member #79540) posted at 12:25 AM on Wednesday, December 1st, 2021

axj and Brave Sir Robin, thank you. Brave Sir Robin, your second post about different aspects of love that you did or didn't feel or give is incredibly insightful.

Edited to add to Brave Sir Robin that I think my husband's thought processes were similar in some ways. He has mentioned multiple times that at some point he felt he was in so deep that it didn't really matter if he continued or escalated.

How am I still this broken hearted 16 months after D-day?

[This message edited by Grieving at 12:28 AM, Wednesday, December 1st]

posts: 18   ·   registered: Oct. 30th, 2021
id 8701896
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