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Newest Member: MissMe

I Can Relate :
Madhatters Only - Part 2

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 SI Staff (original poster moderator #10) posted at 11:58 PM on Monday, October 19th, 2020

This thread is restricted to MadHatter's

[This message edited by SI Staff at 5:58 PM, October 19th (Monday)]

posts: 10006   ·   registered: May. 30th, 2002
id 8599698
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BraveSirRobin ( Guide #69242) posted at 2:22 AM on Tuesday, October 20th, 2020

Thank you!!

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

posts: 2355   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8599748
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leavingorbit ( member #69680) posted at 9:40 PM on Wednesday, October 21st, 2020

Thank you!! I’ve been ducking in and checking to see if we had hit a new thread yet.

How’s everyone doing? We’ve been weathering the start of the new school year, tackling more communication barriers. Everyday feels like an opportunity, even if it’s a testing time (lots of those).

I feel a lot stronger than I did a year ago. H says he does, too. One day at a time. ✌️

When we drop fear, we can draw nearer to people, we can draw nearer to the earth, we can draw nearer to all the heavenly creatures that surround us. - bell hooks

posts: 236   ·   registered: Feb. 7th, 2019
id 8600560
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WalkinOnEggshelz ( Administrator #29447) posted at 2:53 PM on Thursday, October 22nd, 2020

Bump

Me: WS late 40’s
Him: BH (HoldingTogether)
D Day: 7/24/2010
If you keep asking people to give you the benefit of the doubt, they will eventually start to doubt your benefit.

posts: 14727   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2010   ·   location: Texas
id 8600814
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Mickie500 ( member #74292) posted at 2:43 AM on Friday, October 23rd, 2020

I have decided nobody likes a MH. 😔

posts: 360   ·   registered: Apr. 23rd, 2020
id 8601107
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leavingorbit ( member #69680) posted at 4:47 PM on Friday, October 23rd, 2020

Hi, Mickie. How have you been doing? I remember feeling like that sometimes during the first year. It’s a big tangle to navigate.

When we drop fear, we can draw nearer to people, we can draw nearer to the earth, we can draw nearer to all the heavenly creatures that surround us. - bell hooks

posts: 236   ·   registered: Feb. 7th, 2019
id 8601328
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Mickie500 ( member #74292) posted at 5:31 PM on Friday, October 23rd, 2020

I’m a mess really. I keep feeling like I need to feel something different - I keep need to answer to the pain that is in the pit of my stomach. It’s like there is a beast inside me and it growls at me every time the mind movies start or I am triggered by something and it demands retribution. The eye for an eye kind of retribution.

posts: 360   ·   registered: Apr. 23rd, 2020
id 8601343
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WalkinOnEggshelz ( Administrator #29447) posted at 10:14 PM on Saturday, February 6th, 2021

Bump

Me: WS late 40’s
Him: BH (HoldingTogether)
D Day: 7/24/2010
If you keep asking people to give you the benefit of the doubt, they will eventually start to doubt your benefit.

posts: 14727   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2010   ·   location: Texas
id 8631200
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TonsOfSteel ( new member #74573) posted at 5:35 PM on Tuesday, February 9th, 2021

Hello.

Finally, I figured out how to post to this thread.

I am really struggling. My BW and I are mad hatters. She f***ed her ex before we got engaged, and then initiates contact with him because she "feels bad" about how it went.

I had never cheated before this relationship, but acted out, had patterns of a SLAA, and even had an EA. I haven't slept with anyone but my wife since we met.

She has.

The latest infidelity came when she reached out to her ex on social media, and I joined the app she was on, and then I got the "Oh, by the way..." speech. She had been in touch with him. And then minimized it. No chats, no messages, etc. But the day after, said there had been chats, messages, etc.

I feel like my window of cheating was limited. But that hers has been 25+ years. I disclosed and admitted. Hers, I had to discover several times. And I wasn't even looking! It just happened.

I have been miserable for a year, and can't shake it.

Thank you for listening.

posts: 7   ·   registered: Jun. 11th, 2020
id 8631812
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keljpvs ( member #79553) posted at 6:48 PM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

I had posted about my current situation on the General forum but thought maybe some of you would get what I’m going through. I had my A about 5 years ago. Devastated my husband and kids. He was deeply hurt and I felt horrible for what I did. I’ve worked on myself over the years and I thought he had worked to forgive as he said he did.

Now he’s had an A for 3 weeks with a co-worker and is suddenly in love with her. To be fair, he asked for permission to have sex with her but promised it wouldn’t go anywhere. I should have started asking questions about our marriage right then but didn’t. I was so hurt and but out of my continued guilt I said fine and we laid some boundaries. He said it was over after a couple weeks and for two days it was back to normal until I found a text from OW.

He came clean at that point and said although he’s always loved me, he was never sure he would stick around once the kids graduated and has never felt the same about me. He wants to leave me and kids for this woman.

We’ve been together for almost 25 years and I don’t know how to do life without him. He said if he could continue seeing her while he tries to figure things out he would go to MC with me and he would work me on when he could see her.

That was just over a week ago. I felt like I’ve been lied to for years and I’m as crushed as a person can be. I agreed to his terms. What I have a hard time understanding is I never wanted to leave him. There was something missing at the time and he was not the best person so I looked for validation in all the wrong ways. After 3 weeks he’s proposing not just leaving me but both his kids that have significant mental health issues. I am really struggling with that one. How could you want to leave your family and the only support you’ve ever known. Not to mention I’m so in love with his that I’m willing to be hurt every day knowing they are talking and so "in love".

I know I hurt him and I own all of that. The guilt chokes me every day. Especially now.

So I’m sticking it out hoping that something snaps him back to reality. First MC appt is this Friday. He endured the pain I caused him so I’m trying to do the same but how do I keep going when I’m being crushed by anxiety and depression in the process.

I’m not changing my mind and I’m seeing this through but I just need help dealing with the emotional fallout.

posts: 58   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2021   ·   location: Fredericksburg,VA
id 8697561
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BraveSirRobin ( Guide #69242) posted at 7:46 PM on Monday, November 8th, 2021

I don't know if you knew this, but I'm a madhatter, too. My BH cheated on me both before and after my affair. The first time was just a teenage fling, making out drunk at a party with his sister's friend. The second time was in response to my 4 month affair; he had an ONS with a girl that he basically used for self-validation. I had no idea about the first girl until after I confessed my A, and I gave him permission for the second because I didn't feel I had the right to say no. Ironically, my own affair was with "permission" too. It was supposed to have a boundary of casual dating. That blew up in all of our faces.

So I know quite a bit about fear and guilt and trying to even the score and having things go sideways emotionally. The reason I can't help you bear your pain is that I know it is an extraordinarily bad idea for you to try to bear it. I wouldn't give you advice on how to hold a red hot iron in your bare hand, either, or how to endure amputating your own feet. It's not that I don't understand terror, bargaining, guilt or rationalization. I have felt and watched them all at close range. I have sat by the phone, knowing that the man I loved was naked with someone else right at that moment, waiting to hear the report of it. I have watched my BH try to cope with eight months of my refusal to go NC. I'm over 30 years out from those events and still dealing with the fallout. And so I know that acting from those impulses will continue to damage you in ways you cannot comprehend.

Trauma rewires the brain. The changes will stay there, fucking you up indefinitely, even if you eventually "win" and he comes back to you. And the longer this goes on, the worse the trauma will be.

I can't give you what you're seeking, but I felt I owed you an explanation for why I can't.

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

posts: 2355   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8697574
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keljpvs ( member #79553) posted at 1:35 PM on Wednesday, November 10th, 2021

@BraveSirRobin I understand what you are saying and I appreciate hearing your story. I'm at the very least glad you understand what I'm feeling. Every day feels like more of a nightmare than the last. The anxiety, depression build up more every day no matter how much I exercise to get rid of those feelings.

I have to reach the point of intolerance on my own and despite what everyone is telling me I can't let go yet. MC appt is Friday night. I'm waiting to see what happens with that. I know one appt is not going to fix this but I might get a better idea of his thinking and where he is at and see what direction we are heading.

posts: 58   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2021   ·   location: Fredericksburg,VA
id 8697848
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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 6:34 PM on Wednesday, December 8th, 2021

How did everyone manage their feelings when they found out they were MH?

I haven't found out so much (I knew about it), but had an admission of it being an affair from my husband a day or so ago. Him owning it brought a lot of relief, but then stirred up a lot of the feelings (hurt abandonment and anger) that came from his EA. We're in MC and focusing on how we relate to each other, so I'm not going to derail that, but I do want to process my feelings around his EA.

In a way, it's actually helping me heal- knowing that he knows what he did and is taking responsibility for it. The taking responsibility is actually helping me feel safer emotionally with him.

Today in MC, when asked if eventually he would have come to the place where he reached out for help in our marriage without my affair, he said, "probably eventually." I'm not sure how to take that since I had been asking for his help and participation for YEARS and could only see things continuing just they way they were until I was either institutionalized or dead by suicide. I just feel so sad because it didn't have to come to any of this. I certainly didn't have to have my A in reaction to his EA. I guess I'm just mourning all the pain and loss and wasted time where BH wasn't willing to take responsibility for himself in our M and do his own work in it.

Sigh. Just sad and needed to be heard.

Does this technically make me an MH? His EA was so small and insignificant compared to mine. I don't feel fair even calling it that since it was so much smaller in scale compared to mine. That mine is the one that needs to be focused on and BH should get a pass on his EA since mine was so much worse.

Anyone else deal with this?

posts: 279   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8703082
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Mickie500 ( member #74292) posted at 1:38 PM on Thursday, December 16th, 2021

I haven’t posted in a while. I am technically a madhatter after finding out my husband cheated on me. I am in no contact with my online affair partner which if I’m honest with myself doesn’t really feel enough to me like a revenge affair since it was online and we never had sex.
I am slowly coming to grips that I will never get over his affair and having a revenge affair won’t help that feeling.

posts: 360   ·   registered: Apr. 23rd, 2020
id 8704478
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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 3:43 PM on Thursday, December 16th, 2021

Hi Mickie, glad to see you're back.

My BH started going on Tinder and "Catholic Singles" ironically rolleyes after he found out.

I think he was just "shopping around" but there were indications that he wanted to see what he's been missing and hurt me like I hurt him.

The urge to revenge yourself against your betrayer is a natural response to being hurt. Just because it's natural doesn't make it healthy. As you know. I'm glad you're coming to see that now.

How are you doing? Are you doing anything for yourself? Are you in IC?

posts: 279   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8704495
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Mickie500 ( member #74292) posted at 9:22 PM on Thursday, December 16th, 2021

IC wasn’t impacting me. I stopped. I’m just faking it through my life right now. Somethings got to give.

posts: 360   ·   registered: Apr. 23rd, 2020
id 8704554
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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 10:27 PM on Thursday, December 16th, 2021

What's keeping you from getting real? What would you change if you could?

I get it about IC not working. I'm kinda at a standstill with mine- I think I've gone as far as I can with her and am looking for a new one before the year is out.

It's weird breaking up with an IC ("It's me, not you..." haha), she really was very good getting me through the codependency and lack of self worth. She helped me understand and distinguish between my work and BH's work, who was responsible for what in regards to emotions.

That said, I've got quite a few emotional trauma "triggers" (HATE that word) to work through in how I relate to BH. I am looking for another therapist who specializes in trauma and not just cognitive behavorial stuff.

Was your IC just not a good fit or didn't have what you needed?

posts: 279   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8704565
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Mickie500 ( member #74292) posted at 1:54 PM on Sunday, December 19th, 2021

I just didn’t feel like it was working. I need someone to get me to see why having a revenge affair in away other than just pointing out possible consequences and saying it’s not something I would naturally do.

I need that EMDR because I can’t get over thins. I want to stay in my marriage but if I don’t make him feel the pain I’ve caused then I just feel stupid. My ego is huge and wants revenge.

I know it’s me that the RA aren’t actually successful but I’m not sure how to deal with my ego and the pain.

posts: 360   ·   registered: Apr. 23rd, 2020
id 8705026
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BraveSirRobin ( Guide #69242) posted at 2:54 PM on Sunday, December 19th, 2021

I know it’s me that the RA aren’t actually successful but I’m not sure how to deal with my ego and the pain.

I think part of the problem is that you've always seen your ego as an asset. It made you feel proud, powerful and safe: "No one fucks with me, or they pay the price, and I walk away the winner."

But once you're married, your fortunes are intertwined, and you can't win by attacking your own interests. Unless and until you decide on divorce, your efforts to undermine your marriage hurt you as well as your husband. And so your ego, which is different from healthy self-esteem, keeps firing ricochets. It's furiously demanding satisfaction without negative consequences, and that simply isn't possible. There's no world where you get to crush him with your own infidelity and also stay in the role of blamelessly healing spouse.

You have a choice in front of you, and no one here or anywhere else can give you a solution that avoids it. Do you want to leave your marriage, or do you want to try to save it? There's no wrong answer, but they are mutually exclusive. Your ego is not protecting you. It's standing in the way of you seeing the right choice for you.

[This message edited by BraveSirRobin at 11:54 PM, Sunday, December 19th]

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

posts: 2355   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8705031
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Mickie500 ( member #74292) posted at 11:51 AM on Tuesday, December 21st, 2021

Your ego is not protecting you. It's standing in the way of you seeing the right choice for you.


So so true.

posts: 360   ·   registered: Apr. 23rd, 2020
id 8705270
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