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IC recommended Esther

Pages: 1 · 2 · 3

Adira posted 4/7/2021 20:19 PM

Hi 2D,

neither of us are prepared for the hard work of R and WGF is unwilling to accept any of the consequences that come with it.

WGF has quite her IC after 3 sessions and said it was a waste of time.

WGF's not giving you much to work with. She still has very little remorse & doesn't want to be held accountable. Ask me how I know.
My IC knows that I still love my WGF and last night suggested that I take separation off the agenda for a bit to see if I become okay without the NC I asked for, the issue that drove me to start the S discussion in the first place (AP is a colleague) She also suggested I read Ester Perrel
Is she suggesting I try to rugsweep? Or is there any value in listening to what she is saying?
A BS shouldn't have to see if they "become okay" without NC as part of their healing. What you decide you need to R is on your terms, not someone else's. Absolutely she's suggesting you rugsweep. And the way EPerel romanticises cheating- it's a no from me.
Basically WGF wants to go down the ďI made a mistakeĒ route and I think IC is pushing me in this direction too.
She says that I donít have to accept that Iím responsible for the A, I just have to accept that WGF thinks Iím responsible for her A.
Hell no. They're both minimising and blame shifting. You have zero responsibility for the A.
And this is what I have struggled with since dday. I feel like Iíve been trying to squeeze myself into accepting conditions which i would tell my own son or anyone I cared about to run away from.
Why canít I just listen to myself?
I'm exactly the same. I spent way too much time trying to convince myself that my WH's behaviour (both during & after A) was acceptable, despite it going against my core values. It just didn't sit right & didn't feel authentic. I stopped telling myself "this is what I should do to keep this M because I love him" & started asking myself "what do I want?" The answer became clear very quickly.

[This message edited by Adira at 8:25 PM, April 7th (Wednesday)]

Justsomeguy posted 4/7/2021 23:10 PM

Okay, I could go into a lo g post about friends, cheaters, blah, blah, blah, but I am too fucking drunk to bother. Cheaters love Ester Perel because they make them feel better about themselves without any of the inconveniencent jard work. I even had a cheater friend of mine day, hey, have you heard of Ester perel? As if she were some relational prophet. She tickles the ears of the unfaithful, with just enough truth to deny her apologist leanings...

BetrayedGamer posted 4/8/2021 00:01 AM

I'm with ya. IMO a relationship can only R with a cheater if:
1. NC with the AP
2. NC with the medium that they met the AP (online game, social setting, whatever)
3. WS takes 100 percent responsibility

Even then, wouldn't blame anyone for still refusing a R. The above would be the bare minimum to just consider it.

TwoDozen posted 4/8/2021 06:06 AM

Thanks for all the replies everyone

Think I need to address a common theme running through the comments. It seems there is at least some perception that I started the S process as a manipulation tactic to make WGF see ďIím seriousĒ

This was not my intention, I actually got to the point where I realised this was my only route forward. She could come home this evening and say ďIíve quit my jobĒ and honestly I donít know if that will make any difference today.

But in my IC sessions I still share that I still love my WGF, so she doesnít understand why I would want to continue with the separation. She is clearly in the forgive and move forward camp and thinks I am being a little stubborn or cutting my nose of to spite my face, leaving the person who I still believe to be my soulmate.

And rather than give me advice on how to prepare myself for a different future she is suggesting I reconsider my current path and see if I could continue in the current relationship without the changes or actions I asked for.

Now anyone who has been through this will know that gaslighting seriously affects your decision making skills and this is really the last thing I needed to hear but thatís what she is telling me.

On top of all this the relationship between WGF and I is still very good, we are still acting like best friends towards each other and spend very little time with anyone else. We both I guess naively think that we can carry on like this even after one of us moves out of the family home, so perhaps the reality still isnít hitting home for either of us.

We are still discussing logistically the process of separating and have done much of the financial stuff already. The next step is a big one and that will be telling the kids, something she doesnít want to do but is coming and very soon.

As Iíve mentioned before I am in the unenviable situation that I appear to be a dealbreaker guy who is still very much in love with the person who broke the deal and that person has not been willing to make a new deal.

I donít feel like this IC is onboard with my route out of infidelity

Justsomeguy posted 4/8/2021 08:22 AM

Get a new IC. It sounds like this one does not have experience with betrayal trauma.

Phoenix1 posted 4/8/2021 13:36 PM

I feel like Iíve been trying to squeeze myself into accepting conditions which i would tell my own son or anyone I cared about to run away from.

Your son is watching, and learning, from you. Once he learns about everything he will process his thoughts and potentially learn his own future actions in the face of similar circumstances by seeing your own actions. What example do you want to set? This is a rhetorical question, but only you can answer it.

It's no fun being the "bad guy" in ending a relationship, and there is nothing wrong with still loving someone you know you have to cut loose. It happens a lot around here. There is nothing that says you can't reconcile at a later time if she actually does the hard work needed to fix herself.

Be true to yourself in the face of conflicting emotions. Actions speak louder than words ever will. Your WGF's actions are speaking to you, and your actions are ultimately speaking to your son. Don't lose site of that no matter what words are spoken.

OwningItNow posted 4/8/2021 16:47 PM

On top of all this the relationship between WGF and I is still very good, we are still acting like best friends towards each other and spend very little time with anyone else.

Look, you can do this. Your choice. But you are the one that is giving your WGF the impression that she does not need to accept responsibility or change. We say "actions over words" here, and your actions are telling her "it's fine. I still love you. We're still the same." That's why she's ignoring your words.

I am curious, why are you speaking one way yet acting another? Do you know? You tell her what you want yet act like it's not a big deal that you haven't gotten it. It's a very problematic relationship style and almost guarantees you will not get what you hope for. If her behavior is unacceptable, then treat her like someone whose behavior is unacceptable. With emotional and physical distance.

And a p.s. Never tell your kids BEFORE you two have done the painful work of actually living separate lives. Live the 180 for a while. Hurt yourselves before you hurt those kids, not the other way around. It seems like you plan to take every passive step of posturing a separation before you plan on actually separating. Don't posture by using your kids and their heartbreak. If you can't even do the 180, then you are lying to yourself. So don't tell the kids.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 4:55 PM, April 8th (Thursday)]

gmc94 posted 4/8/2021 18:13 PM

But you are the one that is giving your WGF the impression that she does not need to accept responsibility or change. We say "actions over words" here, and your actions are telling her "it's fine. I still love you. We're still the same." That's why she's ignoring your words.
I agree with OIN.

I've had a really hard time with this piece, as I was financially dependent upon WH, had a great (but AWFUL paying) job with an expiration date I felt obliged to fill to completion, and then Covid. I had VERY practical reasons to not D or permanently S (we did a 6mo S from months 18-24). It's only now, that those practical reasons have mostly resolved, that I realize how those practical reasons have also stalled me emotionally. That bc we still had to live together, I didn't want to deal with IHS, or the 180, and I just kept chugging along. Yes, I was getting ducks in a row... but I was also NOT holding my WH accountable.

The more time goes on, the more I view waywards as petulant children. Just as the lizard brain of a traumatized BS responds to ACTIONS vs words, so goes the WS.

TwoDozen posted 4/9/2021 02:34 AM

I am curious, why are you speaking one way yet acting another? Do you know?

This is not lost on me. I have asked my current and previous IC this question many many times and I still donít have an answer to this question Iím afraid.

They have both ruled out CoD so I honestly donít know

Ironically I get angry with myself for not getting angry with WGF

🙄 TD

TwoDozen posted 4/9/2021 02:59 AM

WGF is showing zero signs of wanted to jump back on the R bus. Not only is she unprepared to accept the short term consequences of her A such as finding a new job etc she is also now quite vocal that she is not up for the long term consequences such as lack of blind trust and having to be fully transparent, she now knows they are real and doesnít want to spend the next 40 or so years dealing with them. She only ever wanted the positives (date nights, HB, the pick me dance etc)

She has finally realised that rugsweeping is not an option even if I offered it (which I wonít) and that was the only option she was prepared to accept. I read a lot of stories on here and I figured it typically takes around 12 months for WS to get out of this mindset, well 18 months later and we havenít really progressed.

Furthermore she is really not on the same page with regards to the pain this has caused me. Just last night she booked a trip with friends ďto cheer herself upĒ and by coincidence the location of this trip is the exact same place that the A started with all the same people except the AP...

I do not think for a second this was done to intentionally to hurt me itís just another example that she is completely oblivious and has absolutely no idea what this did to me.

Almost 18 months from Dday and her pain, her comfort are more important to her than mine. I just have to get on the same page and finding a new IC to help me do that will be my next task.

OwningItNow posted 4/9/2021 05:33 AM

They have both ruled out CoD so I honestly donít know

Lol. It's not a medical diagnosis that you rule out, more a sliding scale of behaviors. It's not a "you are or you aren't" for many people.

Your entire last post is her, her, her, her. And it breaks my heart because I feel your hurt. But I remember my IC telling me that I spent a lot of time focused on my partner's thoughts, wants, behaviors, and actions rather than my own. "An unhealthy level of codependence in this relationship" is what she said at one point. I think you are in denial about your unhealthy level of codependence in yours, as well. You are simply unable to separate from your WGF, unable to stop trying to "get her to see" and thus control the outcome. You spend every ounce of your time and energy trying to change her. Your actions and decisions in standing up for yourself or differentiating from her have only one goal--to get her to change. You rarely focus on your own self and your own life and needs unless it's about how she's not meeting those needs. That's not the same as meeting your own goals and needs.

My IC had me do a CoD activity--try it. Go get a rubberband and put it on your wrist. Snap it whenever you think about your WGF. Stop thinking about her at all. Train yourself that it's time to think about you. Do this all day, every day. No thinking of her. Period. I think you will find this challenging and enlightening like I did. And I think you are in some serious denial about the issues holding you back in your life and R, and by deciding you have "no CoD," you are not acknowledging the elephant in the room. Who cares how you do or do not want to label these unhealthy behaviors? Don't call it CoD then. I sure don't care about the name, but these behaviors are your issue:

You keep trying to "get her to see" instead of making decisions about your own life and what you can control.

You have an outcome you want and it's keeping her. A person should not be your goal.

All of the moves you make to separate are decoys. You are unable to 180 or stop thinking of her.

You have no protective insinct where she is concerned. She hurt you, and you cannot locate your anger to stay away from her. This is because you are terrified of pushing her away. Your subconscious will not allow you to get angry and jeopardize things further.

You resist strongly any notion that the solution involves actually leaving her or pushing her away.

I am very, very sorry for the anguish this situation is causing you. I see so much of my former self in you. I mean, I needed that rubberband activity because I wanted to change my H so badly! I thought about it all the time. Your WGF is really hurting you, but consider this: doing the 180 will scare you so badly and make you feel ridiculously uncomfortable (lonely, awkward, mean, guilty, etc.) but she will actually feel the loss! Of you! She does not deserve this time and energy you shower on her. See yourself as the prize, the gift you give her when you spend time with her. She needs to feel the loss of that gift, THEN she will feel what she actually did. (See my tag line.)

A relationship has a balance of need that seems to always = 100. While my little theory is not correct on a daily basis, it is more accurate than not over time. It's like this:

You need her 100%
So then she needs 0%
Why? Because you must = 100%, and you are doing all the "need" in the R. She can hang waaaayyyy back.

Maybe it used to be
You need her 65%
She needs you 35%
Maybe you lived that way for years without realizing. It was your balance.

Imagine if you can stop needing her and pull back to 30%
What will happen, what will she realize?
She actually does need you so kicks in the 70%.

Why do they chase when we move away? Ask any IC, but it's standard distancer/pursuer stuff. Of course, if someone pursues a new R instead, then they put their energy elsewhere. But frequently they feel safe and comfortable valuing the current R more.

The best, healthiest R is
50% me
50% you
Everyone feels equally valued and equally independent.

When you realize that you only have you in this life and it's enough, your anxiety will go down. Snap, snap, snap yourself into finding your own sense of self and purpose. She will then have a chance to miss the security and warmth she has taken for granted. And maybe then her sh$tty choices will be more apparent in her mind.

TwoDozen posted 4/9/2021 06:02 AM

@OIN

Wow Thankyou. I will read, reread that a number of times at let it sink in.

Edited to add

I donít post everything thatís going on in my life but I am trying to focus on myself (and the kids)

Itís true I think about WGF a lot like every waking second and most of the asleep ones 🙄

Contrary to how my posts come across my current direction is very much S and Iím taking positive not just passive steps to get there. I have mortgage appointment this afternoon, realtors booked for next week

Outside of this and without the children knowing itís very difficult during covid times to detach because we are literally each otherís only company.

Sure I still want her to ďget itĒ I imagine thatís only natural because fundamentally I donít believe I have spent 25 years with a partner who has zero empathy so part of me believes she will ďsnap outĒ of it. But Iím caring less and less each day (still way too much I agree) but conscious that I want an amicable split so detaching will happen over time and come with a heavy thump when I purchase a new house.

My posts about WGF actions arenít really to focus on her only to justify (maybe to myself) why Iím moving to S

I used to journal at the start but then I changed to posting here as a more interactive therapy for myself. And this interaction does help.

You have provided more helpful observations in the few posts above than either of my ICs have. I will continue to look for one that will actually help me.

TD

[This message edited by TwoDozen at 6:29 AM, April 9th (Friday)]

DanielJK posted 4/9/2021 06:31 AM

ďto cheer herself upĒ

Geez, is your WGF the long lost sister of my STBXWW?

The victim mentality is just astounding. She broke your heart, but she is the one that needs to be cheered up.

Very insightful stuff from OIN. I know this applies to many BS here...OIN is right.

This is because you are terrified of pushing her away. Your subconscious will not allow you to get angry and jeopardize things further.

I'm guilty of this...that protective instinct should be listened to, OIN is right.

[This message edited by DanielJK at 6:31 AM, April 9th (Friday)]

Unsure2019 posted 4/9/2021 09:08 AM

TD,

Did you tell your WGF exactly how big a trigger her planned trip was for you and how it felt? If not, why, and if you did, what was her response?

TwoDozen posted 4/9/2021 10:16 AM

@unsure2019

Not on this occasion. Weíve had similar discussions about similar situations and her response has been something along the lines of

ďYou asked me to be honest, and Iíve been honest and being honest has triggered you. I wouldíve been better off not telling youĒ

So her attitude isnít I understand and will be more aware of these situations to avoid these triggers, itís should she be deceitful to avoid the triggers in the first place.

In this case however considering we are S then she probably shouldíve kept it to herself as it doesnít matter.

Unsure2019 posted 4/9/2021 12:34 PM

TD.

I understand your not bringing this up because youíre on a path to S. I still think it would be good if you did tell her Ė not in an accusatory way, but rather how this is extremely painful for you. You never know what interaction may flip a switch in her. If her response is just more of the same, it might just help make disconnecting a little easier. OrÖÖ. maybe all the above is just my own stuff and wishing a better outcome for you. Who knows.

grubs posted 4/9/2021 12:52 PM

Just last night she booked a trip with friends ďto cheer herself upĒ and by coincidence the location of this trip is the exact same place that the A started with all the same people except the AP..

With all of her recent realizations of the actual repercussions of the A, I hope you are mentally prepared for the possibility that AP or another OM might be part of her cheering up process on this trip. She seems more checked out in your words than you are.

[This message edited by grubs at 12:53 PM, April 9th (Friday)]

Jorge posted 4/9/2021 13:17 PM

She is clearly in the forgive and move forward camp and thinks I am being a little stubborn or cutting my nose of to spite my face, leaving the person who I still believe to be my soulmate.

It doesn't matter what she thinks, nor does it matter what EP teaches. The only thing that matters is what works or doesn't work for you. Whether you consider her your soul mate or roommate doesn't change anything.

The only thing that matters is whether she can meet your requirements for reconciliation. She either can or can't. How you think of her doesn't change your conditions for reconciliation.

Recovery is a personal matter that hinges on many things including, but not limited to FOO, psychological makeup physiological variables. You set the standard. It's for her to meet, but not define.

gmc94 posted 4/9/2021 15:55 PM

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ 1000% this.

Adira posted 4/9/2021 16:49 PM

Weíve had similar discussions about similar situations and her response has been something along the lines of

ďYou asked me to be honest, and Iíve been honest and being honest has triggered you. I wouldíve been better off not telling youĒ

This is exactly the same sort of manipulative crap my WH pulls.
She wants you to believe the problem isnít what she does, itís your reaction to it.

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