Thank you everyone for your replies, I will try and respond the best I can.
I agree that if he needs distance, I should make establishing and keeping that distance my top priority. The problem is that as of now he is sometimes struggling with communicating his wants and desires with me. I am afraid that me leaving him rather than vice versa would hurt him even more, and I don't want that. I want to stay with him really badly, but if he isn't down then I won't hold him back. I let him know this and he says he thinks he wants to stay.
We never really did "breaks". He says we are going to either break up or stay together and I agree. The people I know who have taken breaks like this usually have not had their relationships last long, and I want to be with him for a long long time! I have tried to be as proactive as possible. Every time I am going somewhere or doing something without my BS. I check myself and wonder: What is he feeling rn? How can I help any negative feelings he may have? And by doing this I have been able to be transparent without him asking, aside from one or two things that were so routine for me that I never even considered them. When he made those requests I felt so awful because it really showed how much my stupid actions affected us. He said the same thing as you, that he isnt a parole officer and if he has to act like one he is gonna leave.
I guess that I have been just in this cycle you talk about because I just don't know how to approach it differently. It's why I'm here, to try and find a better way to help and possibly R. Do you have any advice on how to deal with the symptoms of affair PTSD, especially disgust and estrangement, as I am struggling with being turned down now by someone who I desire even more as time passes. I just am not experienced with healthy ways to handle rejection, but I try and not get angry or worked up over it, and remember that this isn't his fault, its mine.
I've actually realized through experiencing estrangement that I relied on him too much emotionally. I've read up on this, and while I still really enjoy, appreciate, and value the chances to vent and feel safe with him, I check myself to make sure that I am not using him as my emotional toilet.
I can tell that he is much more insecure, but that is not a bad thing and it is understandable given the circumstances. From an outsider's view, he seems like a bad bet on the surface, but there is a lot about him that people don't know. He is a great communicator and that has really helped our relationship over time, even now. He is a quiet and reserved guy who really doesn't know how attractive he is. He has a career plan and he is determined in achieving it. I admire his work ethic and he motivates me to push myself and better myself. We are great study buddies and the closer I get with him the more I LOVE his sense of humor, we have soo many inside jokes because of his great memory. His smile is so pretty and his laugh makes me laugh. I don't think that I'm a really funny person, but when I can get that laugh from him I feel like its a lil victory for me.
His face is so kissable and he smells amazing. Sometimes when I am tipsy (obviously not since DDay) I can't take my eyes off of him. The main assumption that people have with infidelity is that WS must not be sexually satisfied, I can tell right now that this is not true. At first things were slow, but we always communicated and gave feedback and things have progressed to become so amazing over time. I feel like its a testament to how well we communicate.
As for how I'm good for him? I liked to think that I was supportive and always uplifted him the same way he lifts me up. But sometimes I think I'm just a pretty face. I feel awful sometimes about how I can barely deserve him and I messed up my shot. I want to improve myself and become the woman he deserves but there is a lot to work through.
I think that not going through with the act is a blessing and a curse. On one hand, I remind myself of that to avoid wallowing in self pity, but on the other hand, liars like AP complicate things so much because my BS is questioning himself if I've been lying the whole time. I am expecting to put in 100% of the effort for R rn, I am confident that if I can become a woman who can be as amazing for him as he is for me, I can win him back.
The thought of him seeing AP at all makes me sick. I know that we are not operating as two individuals cooperating, and rather as two adversarial people trying to make something work out of trash. I try and avoid crying or pouting near him. Sometimes it is really, really hard. We know each other well enough that he can tell when I'm upset, and I can tell with him too. Before, when I used to notice he was feeling down, I would ask him for a hug. I obviously can't just ask for that now, but I do ask him if he wants me to go on a walk or leave the room, or if I can stay beside him. Fortunately, we have one school year left, and then he will probably never see AP again.
I plan on reading through the healing library, but I feel that telling him I am reading these books is kind of manipulative. I would rather read, learn, and change myself as I go through these books. We have always been really good at communication, but it used to be him taking the lead. I have been trying to do that now. Its been hard, but it has also been eye opening for me. People called my BS controlling, insecure, and abusive. I learned to cut these people from my life because they aren't friends of the relationship.
After this quarantine, I don't find myself looking forward to going clubbing. I would rather do things with my BS, like travelling and eating out. I will still make sure that I reconnect with my friends and keep those bonds strong, but some parts of the nightlife I won't participate in. I can always get new friends who share my values, but I don't think I'll ever meet another man like my BS.
I find my BS really attractive. He is the kind of man who I didn't even expect to find hot, but I've had my sex drive increase over time with him. Since Dday, I've started to be open about my feelings for him and how much he really is on my mind. He didn't believe me until I showed him examples of prior to DDay when I felt the same way. I've been more vocal about my feelings when we are intimate, and he has said it helped. Sometimes it doesn't and we stop midway through.