Newest Member: Serenity7

Reconciliation :
Could use some encouragement, I screwed up

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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 11:16 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

Long story short, WW has been coming around and overall am feeling good about R. This is coming after 9 months of difficulty, and since ultimately I wanted R it has been encouraging.

Last night I screwed up. We were watching a TV show where the guy cheated on his wife with his lover. WW asked me "You doing OK?" and I said "Yeah, but these scenes stir up a lot of bad feelings, I mean the guy on TV is not principled, and your OM wasn't principled I mean he knew you were married and still pursued you, and the difficulty thinking of you as unprincipled to go for it."

As soon as I said it she scooted away from me and sat straight up. I regretted it immediately "I'm sorry, I don't know why I said it, I got carried away, I don't mean to say you are unprincipled in general, I didn't mean it, I hope you can forgive me" and she talked a little how it hurts her feelings, and she's insulted (Usually she doesn't talk or say anything). I told her again I was sorry. It was bedtime so we dropped it.

Now this morning and just now, she's not exactly back to her old self, but she's withdrawn and closed-off. This morning's and this afternoon's kiss was tight-lipped.

Just a bit ago she asked how I was doing:

Me: "I'm angry with myself with my comment last night. I didn't mean to sound criticizing and I appreciate how you've been making an effort, I acknowledge how you've been working and I'm upset with myself because I don't want us to lose the momentum, I don't want you giving up."

WW: "Thank you" <then silence>

Me: <silence>

WW: "Ok, well I need to go run my errands, be back in a bit"

She's not as cold as she used to be, but she's clearly pissed off and her WW ways are coming out again. So I'm really angry at myself because now things have set back and I don't want to "chase her" but I grow so tired of this dance and I thought we were moving past it.

Damn.

Me: BH Early 50's
Her: WW Early 50's
D-Day Nov 2020
Married 21 years before D-Day
3 children
Working toward reconciling. The most difficult thing I've had to do in my life.

posts: 239   ·   registered: Mar. 3rd, 2021
id 8674092
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AnOminousMan ( Member #79091) posted at 11:21 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

I don't think you want any advice that I would give. I will be praying for you.

If you love me, you will keep my commandments. (John 14:15)
My story doesn't really matter. I had it way easier than most.
The only thing that matters is can you stare into the mirror and like what you see.

posts: 104   ·   registered: Jul. 8th, 2021
id 8674094
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Trapped74 ( Member #49696) posted at 11:25 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

What? No! Just No. YOU DID NOTHING WRONG. She asked if you were OK because she knew you were NOT OK. You were understandably triggered because of her stupid, selfish, asshole actions.

GAH!! These entitled Waywards really piss me off. The audacity to whine to you about her whittle feelings being hurt.

Do not apologize for being honest about how her betrayal has and continues to affect you.

Many DDays. Me (BW) 46 Him (WH) 49
Happily detached and compartmentalized.

posts: 168   ·   registered: Sep. 21st, 2015   ·   location: Oregon
id 8674098
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crazyblindsided ( Member #35215) posted at 11:28 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

I guess I'm not understanding why what you said is bad. How else are you supposed to talk about the A? It's like she is stonewalling you so you won't do that again. It is unprincipled to cheat that's a fact not a put down.

You could be calling her names.

fBS/fWS (me):48 Mad-hattered after DD1
XWS:50 Serial Cheater, NPD tendencies
Together 24 years, Married 19
DD(18) DS(15)
DD1 (2008) COW, DD2 (2012) MOW, False R (2014) Same MOW. DD3 (2019) Webcam girl

posts: 8034   ·   registered: Apr. 2nd, 2012   ·   location: California
id 8674101
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longsadstory1952 ( Member #29048) posted at 11:28 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

I know you put a lot of time into this, but try not to ruminate too much. For one thing, your point was well made and not over the line. Also, she seems awfully thin skinned. And apparently unwilling to accept an apology.

For heavens sake, she was threatening divorce two weeks ago. She needs to be a lot less tightly wrapped.

As for you, relax. This will blow over. Don’t be walking on eggs.

posts: 1058   ·   registered: Jul. 14th, 2010
id 8674102
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HellFire ( Member #59305) posted at 11:29 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

So, are you not allowed to express your true feelings? Are you not allowed to express how you really feel?

It's obvious you are walking on eggshells.

Her reaction shows she hasn't made a damn bit of progress. Her mask slipped.

She should be apologizing to you.

Good Lord!

[This message edited by HellFire at 5:30 PM, July 9th (Friday)]

posts: 3706   ·   registered: Jun. 20th, 2017   ·   location: The Midwest
id 8674103
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landclark ( Member #70659) posted at 11:34 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

Her reaction is not ok, and is manipulative. If she can’t acknowledge that you have a point, she hasn’t had much growth. She can’t act like a hurt puppy whenever you share your thoughts.

Seems like you want R, but her acting that way when you share your thoughts and forcing you to apologize is not R. It’s just rugsweeping.

Me: BW Him: WH (GuiltAndShame) Dday 05/19/19 with TT through August
One child together, 3 stepchildren
Together 13.5 years, married 12.5 First EA was 4 months into marriage. Last ended 05/19/19.

posts: 1911   ·   registered: May. 29th, 2019
id 8674108
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gmc94 ( Member #62810) posted at 11:39 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

dafuq?

you did nothing wrong. NOTHING.

You clearly communicated your thoughts/feelings. You clearly communicated how/why/what was triggering.

If she can't handle it, that is a HER problem.

R is NOT possible w/o it.

What you describe is total "pick me" dance.

Her reaction is total WS behavior/actions (notice how it's ALL about HER and not about the hurt she's caused? Notice the ABSOLUTELY CLEAR LACK OF EMPATHY?)

Dude, listen to the Helping Couples Heal podcasts.

M >25yrs/grown kids
DD1 1994 ONS prostitute
DD2 2018 exGF1 10+yrEA & 10yrPA... + exGF2 EA forever & "made out" 2017
9/18 WH hung himself- died but revived

It's rude to say "I love you" with a mouthful of lies

posts: 3369   ·   registered: Feb. 22nd, 2018
id 8674109
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prissy4lyfe ( Member #46938) posted at 11:42 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

Once I apolgized for telling my WH that (after realizing he took OW to meet his mother...who is nasty ass hell to me) that his mother could suck a bag of dicks with her new dirty whore of a daughter in law.

But what you said should have been met with a hug and an explicit apology

posts: 1978   ·   registered: Feb. 24th, 2015   ·   location: Virginia
id 8674111
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BlueRaspberry ( Member #76065) posted at 11:42 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

HowCouldSheDoIt,

Your wife had an affair with a total stranger while on a trip with your daughter. Her behavior was callous, dangerous, immoral and unprincipled. There is NO other way to characterize it. Not sure why you feel the need to apologize. She is very selfish and entitled. Not sure you have much to work with here...

posts: 217   ·   registered: Dec. 29th, 2020
id 8674112
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M1965 ( Member #57009) posted at 11:44 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

How is you expressing your pain, and what you feel, screwing up?

It sounds like your wife is more concerned with thinking of herself as a woman of great principle and unquestionable integrity - no comment - than she is in listening to you and helping you to heal from the pain her version of integrity inflicted on you.

You did nothing wrong, but her reaction, and actions since then, are very revealing.

Stop apologizing. She did wrong, and she is still doing wrong, and if you keep apologizing to her you are going to set up a very unhealthy dynamic in a relationship that has already been damaged by her actions.

She is damn lucky you are even prepared to sit on a couch with her, and she has no right to get offended about being thought of as unprincipled after proving how unprincipled she is. Stop pandering to that.

posts: 1177   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2017   ·   location: South East of England
id 8674113
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 11:46 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

What I'm most angry at myself though, is that I'm trying not to lash out. When I was lashing out, deep down I wanted to reach her somehow, to try to transfer the pain to her in some way not so much to hurt her feelings, but to impress upon her how badly it hurts. She had very little compassion those months.

Anyway, I thought I was past it. I hadn't lashed out in a few months now, and although this wasn't a lashing out (I didn't raise my voice or look at her) I did feel the old familiar burning in my stomach which was hard to contain. For myself personally, I don't want to transfer or transmit pain anymore and so this slip-up is hard for me personally.

The fact that she quickly retreated is disappointing.

Me: BH Early 50's
Her: WW Early 50's
D-Day Nov 2020
Married 21 years before D-Day
3 children
Working toward reconciling. The most difficult thing I've had to do in my life.

posts: 239   ·   registered: Mar. 3rd, 2021
id 8674114
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faithfulman ( Member #66002) posted at 11:51 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

You're entitled to lash out, particularly because your wife who is supposed to be your number one ally shitted on you this bad.

When your wife was unhappy with you (she says), she lashed out by having sex with a man outside her marriage.

From everything I have seen, she cheated on you and you are doing everything you can to make it up to her - it's completely backwards.

You cannot get better until the entire dynamic is flipped.

posts: 873   ·   registered: Aug. 28th, 2018
id 8674116
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 11:56 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

faithful: I know, the dynamic needs to flip and it had somewhat. The past week although short, she was doing more to make amends that in the past 9 months.

I feel so silly as a grown man fretting over this shit. I might be over thinking things because she just came up to tell me to come for dinner and she did it warmly and leaned in and kissed softly.

So maybe I just need to grow a pair and fuck it.

Me: BH Early 50's
Her: WW Early 50's
D-Day Nov 2020
Married 21 years before D-Day
3 children
Working toward reconciling. The most difficult thing I've had to do in my life.

posts: 239   ·   registered: Mar. 3rd, 2021
id 8674119
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M1965 ( Member #57009) posted at 11:59 PM on Friday, July 9th, 2021

What I'm most angry at myself though, is that I'm trying not to lash out.

You did not lash out. You told her what you were feeling as a consequence of her actions. If you cannot communicate that without her taking offense and detaching, you are putting far more effort into this than she is, and yet she was the one who cheated.

When I was lashing out, deep down I wanted to reach her somehow, to try to transfer the pain to her in some way not so much to hurt her feelings, but to impress upon her how badly it hurts. She had very little compassion those months.

She still has no compassion, if she can react like that to the husband she cheated on telling her why a show about infidelity upsets him. If you cannot communicate in an honest and straightforward way, and you have to censor your feelings and only say things that flatter her deluded arrogance, what kind of relationship are you building here? One where you have to apologize to her because her cheating hurt you? Really?

And more than that, why are you having to try to find a way to make her understand your pain? If she is worth reconciling with, she would be proving to you that she understands it, and encouraging you to talk to her. How difficult can it be for her to 'get it'? You are not trying to teach a horse how to play the trumpet.

posts: 1177   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2017   ·   location: South East of England
id 8674121
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AnOminousMan ( Member #79091) posted at 12:17 AM on Saturday, July 10th, 2021

I know everyone is trying to help OP with 2x4's, but looking at his posting history does anyone really think that he will take anyone's advice? He clearly sees his wife's affair as his fault. Until he realizes that this is all on her it's pointless.

If you love me, you will keep my commandments. (John 14:15)
My story doesn't really matter. I had it way easier than most.
The only thing that matters is can you stare into the mirror and like what you see.

posts: 104   ·   registered: Jul. 8th, 2021
id 8674125
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AnOminousMan ( Member #79091) posted at 12:19 AM on Saturday, July 10th, 2021

I feel so silly as a grown man fretting over this shit. I might be over thinking things because she just came up to tell me to come for dinner and she did it warmly and leaned in and kissed softly.

So maybe I just need to grow a pair and fuck it.

I sincerely hope you learn to stop sweeping and dancing as hard as you are.

If you love me, you will keep my commandments. (John 14:15)
My story doesn't really matter. I had it way easier than most.
The only thing that matters is can you stare into the mirror and like what you see.

posts: 104   ·   registered: Jul. 8th, 2021
id 8674126
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HoldingTogether ( Member #29429) posted at 12:50 AM on Saturday, July 10th, 2021

Buddy, listen: If you called her a c***, or a bitch or a whore you might be out of line… but an honest and accurate assessment of the facts of the situation and your feelings about it? That’s not out of line..

That’s fucking necessary.

I know you really want to try and salvage this marriage, but please, please, please understand that you trying to protect her from facing the reality of her actions (as well as the repercussions of them) isn’t going to accomplish that.

If anything it’s going to have the exact opposite effect in the long term.

And this is coming from someone that is over ten years out and successfully reconciled.

If you are going to have a hope in hell of salvaging anything even remotely resembling a functional relationship out of this shit storm, you are going to need to be able to express your fucking feelings (yes even sometimes the mean negative ones that make her feel all bad) to her as honestly as you can and as frequently as you feel the need.

She is going to need to be able to put on her big girl pants and take it. And not just because you need to be able to express it, but more importantly because she needs to fucking hear it. Her getting upset about it means that she has not yet full allowed herself to own and accept her own shitty behavior.

Protecting her from having to own and accept her behavior isn’t doing her any fucking favors. It’s enabling her to take that ugly piece of herself that she doesn’t like to look at and lock it away in the dark so she never has to think about it or look at it again.

But the thing is, those ugly pieces of ourselves we don’t like to look at? They don’t ever stay locked up. They sit festering in the dark getting more toxic until they find some new and even more destructive way to manifest themselves.

You don’t get rid of your demons by hiding them away in the dark. You get rid of them by exposing them to the light. Dragging them out into the open where they can be examined, warts and all, and then exorcised.

You wanna know when I really knew that my FWW and I were making real fucking progress? It was when she could, matter-of-factly, without defensiveness without crippling shame, without hysterical crying, admit and openly discuss with me how truly and absolutely abhorrent her behavior had been.

That ability to openly talk about it, without defensiveness or crippling shame, demonstrated ownership, accountability and empathy. It also demonstrated that she realized that her past behavior did not have to dictate the kind of person she was going to be in the future. That she could change, that she was in the process of becoming a better person. She didn’t have to feel overpowering shame or defensiveness because the person whose actions we were discussing was a person that she used to be.. Not the person that she was becoming.

Of course, that shit took time. We didn’t get there overnight.

And we sure as shit did not get there by me giving her any free passes on this stuff.

You want to make this marriage work? You want it to survive? Then next time shit gets heavy and real like that do not fucking back away from the awkwardness.

Lean the fuck into it. Push forward into it. Explore it, discuss it. And for fucks sake do not try to sugar coat it or softball it. That doesn’t mean you have to be an asshole, you don’t necessarily need to be mean

But you absolutely need to be real you need to be honest.

And that’s what happen there. She asked you a question and you answered it honestly. You were real with her. She expected you to lie and tell her everything was ok. That’s what she wanted to hear… because that’s nice and easy and she doesn’t have to feel bad. She didn’t have to do any difficult introspection or self examination. Most importantly she doesn’t have to do any of the hard fucking work of changing.

Instead you told her the truth, which is harder to look at and hurts because it casts her in a bad light. The truth is fucking scary because it means that she might actually have to face some ugly shit about herself. Worse still, it means she might have to do some of the difficult and frightening work of actually trying to change some of that ugly shit about herself.

But nevertheless the truth is what needs to be said if the two of you are going to have a hope in hell of fixing this stuff.

So yeah, you screwed up! Not because of what you said but because you let her stop the conversation just when it was starting to get somewhere productive.

But that’s ok, you are sure to get a bunch more opportunities to get it right. This shit takes years to work through.

Ask me how I know.

HT

Us-Reconciled.
You keep waiting for the dust to settle, and then you realize... This is it, that dust is your life going on.

posts: 999   ·   registered: Aug. 25th, 2010   ·   location: New Life
id 8674132
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faithfulman ( Member #66002) posted at 12:57 AM on Saturday, July 10th, 2021

So maybe I just need to grow a pair and fuck it.

Brother, it more or less boils down to the above.

I'm not sure what you have is a relationship that will ever be good for you going forward.

Your wife did not respect you when she cheated, she has not respected you since, and will never respect you until you require respect from her.

That doesn't mean you will ever get the respect you need from her to have a satisfactory marriage, because she might not be capable of that. It's more about what you will accept in your relationship.

[This message edited by faithfulman at 7:09 PM, July 9th (Friday)]

posts: 873   ·   registered: Aug. 28th, 2018
id 8674134
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DIFM ( Member #1703) posted at 1:05 AM on Saturday, July 10th, 2021

So yeah, you screwed up! Not because of what you said but because you let her stop the conversation just when it was starting to get somewhere productive.

Everything HoldingTogether said, times 100.

posts: 1726   ·   registered: Jul. 14th, 2003
id 8674137
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