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I don't even know what to call this

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Graphite posted 4/18/2021 15:45 PM

Just need to vent and reach out for some moral support. Feeling so sad and crazy. Thoughts like why did he have to throw it all away, we had something good, why was it not enough for him? I was looking at old photos of the family in a calendar - holidays and birthdays, remembering the good times. As far as I was concerned we had it good. I will never understand what derailed him.

My son got back this eve from seeing him and they watched Seaspiracy, a film Stbxh had watched before, and immediately I am thinking I bet that is his new girlfriend influence, how dare he get all ethical about the decimation of fish when he decimated our emotional ecosystem. Sounds crazy but everything about his possible new life is a trigger. I feel jealous he could have something creative and new with someone else, he has caused so much heartbreak here, why should he be enjoying new life?

Yesterday my daughter came home in tears ssying she is not sure she can see him any more, he is bad for her mental health. He barely communicates, yesterday he once again denied his affairs eventhough she needed to know the truth. He dismissed her feelings she knows nothing about his life. With my son, who is younger and doesn't ask questions, he is different - more upbeat and chatty. Is that misogyny?

He is emotionally aggressive and deficient towards me. Yet I can't help wondering whether he has some emotional Renaissance going on with younger woman which is good for him. I am waiting for divorce to come through. I don't doubt that it is right but I hate the feeling of being left behind while he moves ahead with someone new. Just tonight I can't bear the thought he got bored of me, dumped me for in his eyes something newer and more exciting. It hurts.

Cooley2here posted 4/18/2021 18:27 PM

Your story has been here many times. He cheats because there is something missing in him.

Remember, people don’t change. Once the newness wears off the romance he is going right back to his default personality.

I hope you can let go of the idea that his life is going to be all twinkly. It’s just going to be a life.

LadyG posted 4/18/2021 19:04 PM

Graphite, maybe your daughter needs time away from her father. My daughter did distance herself from him. She said to me, “he’s my Dad and I love him, but” the but was, she didn’t want that betrayal and infidelity anywhere near her marriage. Her father is a narcissist. When SIL straight out asked W about what was going on, of course WH gaslighted and out right lied. After the lies he told, he had the audacity to ask our Daughter, “is there anything else you want to know”.

Unfortunately our 24 year old son was well aware of his father’s last affair. Let’s just say that he now has a love/hate relationship with his father. Son basically uses dad for money.

I spoke with my daughter about the abuse and infidelity as I needed her to know that it can happen to anyone. She’s newly wed and we had to have the conversation. I never ever want her to be a victim of marital abuse. Infidelity is abusive.

My sons have repeatedly told me that they are nothing like their father and I hope that I have educated them enough to never ever do such awful things anyone.

The gaslighting your daughter has experienced from her father is extremely bad for her mental health. Her father has betrayed all of you by his selfish actions.

My daughter told me that she can’t imagine why her father would have been unfaithful to someone as wonderful as me. My daughter saw our marriage and relationship. She observed me as a wife and mother. Yet her father chose to trade down. She told him that she wants nothing to do with any woman he gets involved with.

I don’t know how old your children are, (Mine all in their 20’s) how much the children need to know will depend on their ages.

I told my children that I never ever want them to experience betrayal and infidelity. I feel I need to protect them from this.

dolly111 posted 4/18/2021 20:30 PM

Graphite, your story is just like my mother's story in some ways. She found out about my father's affair when the woman that he was running around with caught him running around on her! She ratted him out to my mother. He ended up marrying the the 2nd other woman. He quickly moved on with her and had what seemed to be a blissful life with "the only woman he had ever loved". Her family became his family and my sisters, brother and me were overlooked. His story didn't have a happy ending, new wife got Alzheimers in about 10 years and then he came around looking to have a relationship with his own children. My brother, sister and I were with him when he died (at home), several years after his wife died. I remember sitting in the room after he died waiting for the funeral home to come. I felt absolutely nothing for him. Never have felt anything. My mother died long before he did, but spent her whole life crying over him. She never understood how he could just walk away and never regret what he had done. I wish she had moved away and started a new life, but instead she stayed in the same town, always worrying that she would run into him. About 5 years into his new marriage, he had a major stroke and my mother cried over that! Please, Graphite, don't focus on your WH. Do whatever you have to do to move on. Try your best to look forward, not backwards. Your husband is like my father in the way that he lies with the greatest of ease. Do your best to erase any memories of him from your life.

dogcopter posted 4/18/2021 21:50 PM

Graphite,

Venting is good and I'm glad you did.

I unfortunately don't have much advice to give you on this; I'm getting ready to tell the kids this week that we are getting a divorce. So I really haven't swam in these waters you've been going with.

How is he bad for your daughters mental health? I would really key in on that and ask more questions about that. That could be really important.

I can understand pain that sneaks up from these kinds of thoughts. All I can say, keep letting it out...

Graphite posted 4/19/2021 02:22 AM

I don't know what is meant by 'your story has been here many times' but it feels unwelcoming, like 'oh, you again, still not over it', and that's not what I need. I have been a member since Dec 2020, D day was a year ago, and it's not like I post all that often. Given we are told it takes 2-5 years to recover from betrayal trauma, I am not sure why me sounding like a stuck record of pain a year on is a surprise. I don't post here on the days I am feeling ok or doing constructive things to move forward, I post when I need to express my pain and feel heard. One of the awful things about betrayal is the repetitive cycle of grief, anger and powerlessness that can strike you, it does not mean I want to define myself forever by those feelings.

But right now, yes, I am feeling like the one left behind, stolen from, depleted. My point is he is not carrying the toxic waste he dumped on me.

With my daughter, who is 16, she is considering time away from her dad. She feels he is emotionally unavailable and it disturbs her he is not willing to be honest or acknowledge he was unfaithful. I have told her to discuss with her IC as I don't want to advise her either way. I think she will decide to take a break.

I am trying to move forward, seeing friends, doing IC, going to gym, being with kids, but I also get stuck. That was the point of my post.


The1stWife posted 4/19/2021 03:10 AM

I think what meant was that we see this situation or circumstances from others here at SI. So we have the benefit of others’ experience with the same situation.

I hope this clears up the misunderstanding.

Hippo16 posted 4/19/2021 06:14 AM


Graphite

I don't know what is meant by 'your story has been here many times' but it feels unwelcoming, like 'oh, you again, still not over it', and that's not what I need. I have been a member since Dec 2020, D day was a year ago, and it's not like I post all that often. Given we are told it takes 2-5 years to recover from betrayal trauma, I am not sure why me sounding like a stuck record of pain a year on is a surprise. I don't post here on the days I am feeling ok or doing constructive things to move forward, I post when I need to express my pain and feel heard. One of the awful things about betrayal is the repetitive cycle of grief, anger and powerlessness that can strike you, it does not mean I want to define myself forever by those feelings.

I think you are mis-interpreting the meaning of some posts -


"you story" is common is what is meant


5 years?!!! Holy Cow - you have lived with this behavior for FIVE years?

Why?

Do you have any plan to make a change?

Graphite posted 4/19/2021 06:58 AM

Maybe I did misinterpret, I guess it is a measure of how raw and unsafe I am feeling right now. Sorry if I got that wrong and thanks to folks taking the time to reply.

I lived with him being depressed for 5 years, I never knew there was infidelity until a year ago, D day when he was away, and I haven't seen him since. I filed for divorce as soon as I knew.

The1stWife posted 4/19/2021 07:38 AM

Graphite I’m sorry you are struggling so much.

If I had a penny for every “why does the cheater do this?” I’d be a billionaire

It took me years to understand the situation with my H. His constant need for validation from other women Stemmed from him being shy and not dating many women before we met. In his 30s after we married he was getting the attention and the rest is obvious.

I think in your situation your H has some serious issues. Lying is one (can’t even be honest with your daughter). Depression is hard to face too. He’s looking to make himself happy no matter what. It’s got nothing to do with you. It’s HIM!

This new relationship may not last. When the thrill wears off he may look to do the sane thing over and over again.

And that has nothing to do with you. It’s not that you were t a good person. He’s cheating despite the fact you were a great partner. You were not “discarded” b/c of anything to do with you.

You just weren’t “new”.

I suffered the same thing in my marriage. I wasn’t a 30year old airhead I was the 30 year solid relationship. I wasn’t changing a thing. He’s either in or out. Finally at dday2 I told him he was out.

Get your self esteem back by realizing you were cheated on by a guy who has serious issues and he’s not going to do anything about it. He will remain stuck and tethered to his unhappiness. Meanwhile you can soar to a better life without him.

It’s up to you.

Cooley2here posted 4/19/2021 10:11 AM

I was in a hurry and should have taken more time. Please excuse my seeming uncaring. My point was that if you have time try to read some other posts on here. It might help you to know that there are others who have stood in your shoes. Many come back to offer solace because they have moved through the pain and have the expertise to guide you. This is a wonderful place to find support.
I think the hardest part for bs parents is seeing the pain, confusion and anger in their children and feeling helpless. It’s so difficult to recognize that children want to love both parents but a third party has interfered with that relationship. How do you, the bs, manage that while dealing with your own pain? Look on here. There is a lot of accrued wisdom.

sisoon posted 4/19/2021 15:28 PM

I feel jealous he could have something creative and new with someone else....

Yet I can't help wondering whether he has some emotional Renaissance going on with younger woman which is good for him....

I hate the feeling of being left behind while he moves ahead with someone new. Just tonight I can't bear the thought he got bored of me, dumped me for in his eyes something newer and more exciting.

I understand having these thoughts. Let's take a look at them in the clear light of day.

Um...he's still lying. He's alienated you and his daughter. He's taken up with a younger woman.

Anyone can change, but WSes need to change their internals, not their externals. If your H were changing, he'd be nicer to you and his daughter. He'd reduce his lying to virtually nothing. He'd give age-appropriate answers to your daughter. He's the same old SOB, though. He has not been transformed by any 'love' for this ow. He's still the same old unremorseful, unreliable WS.

You're not boring, although you may be bored. I'll grant that your STBXH may think his new squeeze is more exciting, but his judgment is really screwed up.

He's not seeing reality. Stop seeing yourself through his eyes, as you imagine them.

I am waiting for divorce to come through. I don't doubt that it is right but It hurts.
I can imagine. Being betrayed is bad enough. Losing through D what one thought one had just adds injury on top of injury.

I think you'll feel a lot better after this limbo is over and your D is granted.

(((Graphite))) - a hug, if you'll take one

[This message edited by sisoon at 3:32 PM, April 19th (Monday)]

Graphite posted 4/19/2021 15:35 PM

Yes 1st Wife, he has serious issues. I think he is no normal cheater, if there is such a thing, he seems personality disordered.
Thank you for your insight. I truly hope I can be free of him, then flourish without him.

It is so hard when new shocks just keep on coming. Just today my DD told me her brother saw an I love you message on his phone from a woman whose name and contact details appeared while their dad was away from table. He was upset and did not know how to challenge him. My daughter googled the woman anf thinks she lives locally. It is also a different name to the one I knew was relevant at Xmas, so possible he has two women on the go.

I don't give a shit about him any more, I just hate he stole our reality. We feel shocked by his dissociation and refusal to admit he wrecked the family. Todsy my DD told me she has decided to go NC. My son wants to see him still but is confused and upset he lies.

Thanks Cooley2here, thanks for clarifying. Yes, I do read other stories and it helps but sometimes you still feel so alone with the madness.

nekonamida posted 4/19/2021 16:05 PM

I feel jealous he could have something creative and new with someone else....

Yeah, about as creative and real as your average reality tv show. And with the right amount of drama too.

So many BSes worry about this but think about it - your WS was a depressed, broken person for at least 5 years. His own kids can barely stand him. He won't magically change into the best version of himself when the ink dries on your D. He'll still be depressed and broken. Broken people attract broken people so whoever have the unpleasant experience of dating him next is going to find out soon enough what it feels like to be you.

EllieKMAS posted 4/19/2021 16:22 PM

But right now, yes, I am feeling like the one left behind, stolen from, depleted. My point is he is not carrying the toxic waste he dumped on me.
I absolutely know it doesn't seem like this right now, but HE is the toxic waste. He will carry that forward no matter what.

Something I read (I think in the D/S forum) stuck with me and helped when I was in that head space of feeling like xwh got to toddle off to fairy-land with the flavor of the week... Changing who they are WITH does not change who they ARE. Last I heard about my xwh, he had moved in with a married couple to have his glamorous poly life that his mean ol' ex-wife wouldn't let him have. RME. So he has no home, no job, nothing that he owns that said ex-wife didn't buy for him... So basically the only thing that's changed is who he's putting his dick into now. Meanwhile, I have a new higher paying job, less bills, less expenses, my house, my pets, and FAR more peace than I ever had in my M. So yeah - he get's to go live his 'fantasy' life and I don't, but really who's the winner here?

And just my 0.02, but I think the difficulties your daughter is having with him are because she is (rightfully) wanting answers. Your stbxwh clearly wants 'easy' and having to answer for his shitty behavior to people he has hurt is not easy in the slightest. That's gotta be really hard for your sweet girl to deal with (and YOU as well), but truly it isn't about you or her. It is about your stbx being a coward. If she needs a break from him, I say let her have one.

ChamomileTea posted 4/19/2021 17:00 PM

Yesterday my daughter came home in tears ssying she is not sure she can see him any more, he is bad for her mental health. He barely communicates, yesterday he once again denied his affairs eventhough she needed to know the truth. He dismissed her feelings she knows nothing about his life. With my son, who is younger and doesn't ask questions, he is different - more upbeat and chatty. Is that misogyny?

Could be. Your WH was into some pretty filthy stuff as I recall, prostitutes and orgies. Just because he's nice to them doesn't mean he respects them. Misogynists don't announce themselves, right? Most are kind and thoughtful to women... up to a point. As long as said woman isn't in any way threatening or confrontational, the misogynist can hide himself very well. His view of a good woman is like his view of a good dog, right?.. deserving of pats and praise. It's not until she crosses him that his prejudice starts getting the better of him. These types KNOW what they're hiding, and they'll NEVER admit to it. Your daughter is better off. In fact, she's much better off than your son who you'll have to monitor closely lest he be influenced by an inferior intellect.

There's NOTHING for you to feel jealous of regarding your WH's new life. Basically, he's found a young OW who will allow him to pat and praise her like a good dog. But on the day she stands up to him, all that shit changes, just like it did for you... on the quiet because he's a coward. The sneaking, cheating, and lying will start back up. Your WH hasn't had a character transplant. He's still the same passive aggressive conflict avoider he always was. And in the end, you're well shot of him. Just be the sane parent for your kids and model a better life for them. Get out there and build something wonderful, something peaceful and happy.

((hugs))

Graphite posted 4/20/2021 02:16 AM

Thanks guys, lots of really good advice here. And I really need to keep hearing what a SOB waster he is. I tend to default to thinking of him as still human, as the person I met.

Sisoon you're spot on about needing to stop seeing myself through his eyes as I imagine them. His distorted reality puts mirrors up, I need to find a way of noticing when the mirrors go up and take them down. And yes, he has a huge problem with lying. Thing is, I think he enjoys it for its own sake and very possibly has found people who think lying is fun and sexy. I refer to polyamorous sex forum which I think the pictures of his orgy relate to.

Nekonamida, absolutely his life is a reality TV show, or a fantasy football league game in which players get points for their deceptions. In fact I found stuff around his digital footprint on the internet which points to wikifandom around magic fantasy games, content involving references to prostitues, witchcraft and sexual acting out. I kid you not.

EllieKmas, thank you for reminding me he is the toxic waste, I needed to hear that. The imagined unicorn land can be a killer when you are in trauma recovery, like here I am in ICU and there he is partying with the girls.
As 1stwife said, he seems to want to get happy at any cost, even if that means STDs and losing relationship with his kids.

ChamomilleTea my daughter now wants nothing to do with him. She is considering her no contact message. I doubt it will make him wake up. More I think about the misogyny side, the more it feels no contact is a good thing. My son is vulnerable. I worry if he is the last one standing, in terms of contact, that all the weirdness and ambivalence will fall on him.

I am also perturbed to think stbxh appeared at end, from horrid talismanic objects i found, to be into witchcraft. Does anyone else not think this is hugely sinister and has actual power in terms of undermining the virtuous circle of the family he left behind? It is awful to know he dabbled in this shit and if I am honest I feel spooked by it. If nothing else it shows he wanted to curse our marriage and invited darkness into all our lives.

Yes to a bright peaceful future free of this monster. Can someone press the fast forward button?

[This message edited by Graphite at 2:17 AM, April 20th (Tuesday)]

The1stWife posted 4/20/2021 02:32 AM

From everything you have shared, your marriage was filled with so many lies and crazy behavior — I think you should celebrate getting away from crazy.

Because he doesn’t appear rational or anything like that.

He’s not the guy you married— he’s become something else.

Graphite posted 5/1/2021 04:00 AM

A lot has happened and I wanted to give an update and share some thoughts.

The divorce came through a week ago. After such a long wait, bam there it was. It is a good and necessary thing. I do feel more separate since last week. The absolute finality of it is still shocking and will take time to sink in. Good riddance to bad rubbish is my dominant sentiment but it is still shocking to be legally separate and to not know what the future holds.

Secondly, my kids and I met a family counsellor and they both expressed how they sense he lied about infidelity and is giving them a fake persona now, not seeming emotionally real or telling them anything about his life including where he lives. They also expressed gratitude at everything I have done for the family since he left which was so good to hear. They are very insightful and kind people. But both in their different ways are hurting a lot from his lies and are faced with how to deal with the dissonance of his fake persona.

My DD, who is 16, wrote her father a message saying she won't see him anymore unless he takes responsibility for his actions and tells some truth, saying how hurt she is by his abandoning us. His response was denial and that I just didn't like him being fun and spontaneous and showing his frivolous side. Sorry, are we talking about the same person? This is the man who spent hours in an armchair on a laptop, glowering with resentment and bad energy if you dared try and engage him, or suggest he might take a walk in nature with the rest of us, or see friends, who once told my mum on holiday that he was so miserable and hated to see other people happy. But would also dress up for his 'magic' nights and would come home in a good mood. I.e he gave us all the misery and complete strangers all his so called fun side.

Anyway, my daughter rejects his current fake persona and doesn't want to see him. Her brother, who is 13, doesn't like the lies or vibe but still wants contact. There are no oveenight stays, it is for the day fortnightly. I worry this is gaslighting too. His dad is getting him to sign up to a fake realtionship because that is all that is on offer. I worry it is morally damaging. We used to be a very close unit before he went solo. His dad is so toxic, manipulative and into bad stuff, I worry where maintaining the relationship on a false footing will lead. I guess I want my son to see he defrauded all of us.

Finally, he said to my daughter that he is in a new relationship that started before Xmas. Yeah sure. No overlap with the years of double life when living here then...He didn't give names but said which part of town she is in, where he got several parking tickets that came here. So I guess he was trying to cover tracks. Unbeknown to him, kids saw an I love you message recently pop up on his phone from another woman who lives near us, so he has inadvertently admitted to now having two women on the go. My point is I don't like them knowing this shit and the lies continuing to pollute current interactions.

I feel he is like knotweed and it would be best if we could all shut him out.

I'd really appreciate some feedback in what feels like a dilemma with my son's position.

OwningItNow posted 5/1/2021 05:46 AM

This is the man who spent hours in an armchair on a laptop, glowering with resentment and bad energy if you dared try and engage him, or suggest he might take a walk in nature with the rest of us, or see friends, who once told my mum on holiday that he was so miserable and hated to see other people happy.

Oh my gosh, this is such the covert narcissist's personality, grumpy and hating people and playing the victim. Do you believe he is truly a narcissist, Graphite? They are so unhappy. Life is a series of repeated diversions from that unhappiness, but it never lasts. The misery is FOO related and part of their core personality.

His dad is so toxic, manipulative and into bad stuff, I worry where maintaining the relationship on a false footing will lead. I guess I want my son to see he defrauded all of us.

I take it your son is less likely to call out your exH's bad behavior? Well, you have professional help and guidance with this now. I understand wanting to protect your kids from the toxic behaviors, but please don't insist that they verbalize the opinion that your exH is toxic so that you personally feel validation. Your kids have their own pain right now, losing their father from their lives and accepting the truth of his hurtful behaviors. They will come to acceptance in their own time, but if you push too hard due to your own neediness, you may push the kids away from you in the process. Your need for them to hate their dad is a pressure they will actually resent. It is not your job to open their eyes.

Just be there for your son when he needs you? I think that's appropriate. He will need to process the many, many hurtful things that your exH will do in the future. Because that's what narcissists do, they hurt the people who dare to love them. As reliably as the sun coming up every day. Imo you should allow your son the chance to make his own decisions about his dad. He has you as the sane parent for true support and to counter the FOO damage being done to him, having honest conversations when things happen and helping him process. That would have helped me a TON as a child, but nobody called my mother out. They all supported her and pretended her behaviors weren't hurtful. I became the scapegoat of the family by not doing whatever she wanted. They labeled me as difficult, and they STILL call me that decades later!!! Your son has you to reverse his dad's damage through honest talk and love. And he has therapy.

My vote is to let him love his dad. Just be there when he's hurting, to explain his dad's true nature and to help him not take the insults personally. Your son will only get the fun dad mask for a while; it always falls eventually. And you'll be there to help him through it.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 6:04 AM, May 1st (Saturday)]

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