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Reconciliation :
Could use some encouragement, I screwed up

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OwningItNow ( Member #52288) posted at 2:50 AM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

Based on what you have said previously, when you present your list, your WW will most likely give unenthusiastic feedback like, "I'll try," or accuse you of trying to control her actions. Even with Sisoon's approach, this is what you will get. Over and over, this is how she is handling your needs.

What is the plan then???

me: BS/WS
h: WS/BS

Reject the rejector.
Do not reject yourself.

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masti ( Member #54237) posted at 3:19 AM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

Your wife having sex with some random opportunist was her way of getting back at you for what she perceives - in her entitled way - for years of not being treated like queen of the universe.

What your wife wants is not you forgiving her for her infidelity. She wants you to admit that you deserved it, and that what she did was perfectly justified. That is why she will not go anywhere near anything that suggests she was bad to do what she did. That is the power struggle. And that is probably why she cheated in the first place. She did it to disempower you, and to assert her independence.

And then she wants you to shut up about she did and never mention it again, because it interferes with the delusional picture of herself as a martyr and a victim that she has created in her head.

This makes a lot of sense. HCSDI you need to value yourself more. There is not much I can say that the others have not. Maybe it really is the time for you to move on and that might shock her to the reality of what she has done. You do need to expose her actions to your other children and family - let her feel the shame.

posts: 119   ·   registered: Jul. 19th, 2016
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Robert22205https ( Member #65547) posted at 12:01 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

Your wife's decision to conduct an affair under DD's nose is evidence of how deeply lacking in empathy she is (not just for you - but for DD too).

And by deleting the texts she's controlled the narrative.

The OM probably initially hit on both of them.

Then your daughter observed him focusing on your wife; your wife saving a seat for him at the pool or restaurant; observing laughing and making eye contact; swimming unnecessarily close & helping her in/out of the pool; plus lots of texting & smiling; and then fixing herself up to look her best for the OM (not a married mom activity) on what sure sounds like a date.

Your daughter most likely questioned your wife's behavior and whether this was inappropriate for a married woman (and encouraging him). And now regrets not challenging her mother more firmly.

It's not a coincidence your daughter is planning on moving out (without any long term plan to support herself) - she's basically running away.

Anger and disappointment at mom; and the guilt she carries because she knows what really happened (and can't betray her mom to you) and wishing she had stopped it (protected you).

[This message edited by Robert22205https at 9:51 AM, July 16th (Friday)]

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OwningItNow ( Member #52288) posted at 12:24 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

she's basically running away. Anger and disappointment at mom; and the guilt she carries because she knows what really happened.

Yes! Exactly! And she is witnessing the fallout between her mom and dad at home and probably feels all sorts of emotions. Your WW did this, HCSDI! She did this instead of talking to you, sharing her feelings and resentments, and behaving like a mature adult. She selfishly got some undeserved ego kibbles while ignoring the feelings of her daughter--and she won't own any of this dysfunction!!!! None of this is because you were a crap husband, HCSDI. Come on! You can see that, right? Please stop covering for the huge red flags and dysfunction in your WW so that you can try to fix this and control the outcome. You just can't. Your WW is a selfish, entitled mess--whether you were or were not a problematic H. The two issues are unrelated.

I'm sorry, but I am furious that an unremorseful cheater thinks she can justify emotionally damaging her still young daughter because her M had "issues." So everyone in your WW's life is collateral damage? And she sees no problem with that? It's her right to damage her husband and kids???!!!! And she owns none of this. Infuriating.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 6:26 AM, July 16th (Friday)]

me: BS/WS
h: WS/BS

Reject the rejector.
Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5263   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8676030
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 3:50 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

If this needs a new thread I'll make one. But in general, has anyone written anything or can point me to something online that can describe R? What R is, what it is not, candidacy for R, requirements for R, expectations for R, the benefits of R, etc.

I think I could come up with something, but maybe someone has something already?

And before the arrows fly, I'll acknowledge that my WW is not a candidate for R, nor is she ready for R. However, I want to pursue a sort of hybrid approach between detaching on TOH and requirements and wants OTOH. Something in the middle.

Where I'm at is being aware listing out requirements for R is too soon, but I need to have the discussion that R or D are the only two paths I can go here. I can't just "stay M" my body rejects it physically.

So a discussion that "this is R." The behaviors in chapters 6-13 are required. If she needs to, I want her to hire Linda MacDonald for a few sessions. What I'm wanting to establish is that R won't be available unless/until both parties want R. And I'm not threatening an ultimatum or timeline, just stating the boundary that "I cannot be in a marriage with unaddressed Adultery."

I predict she will not know what I mean, and so I will need to help her and spell it out. So I need an article I can print out that describes R.

And if she rejects the discussion and rejects my efforts here, well I'm mentally prepared for that. Things we can think about while she's away at orientation.

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.

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id 8676105
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Robert22205https ( Member #65547) posted at 3:56 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

I've read posts which listed what R is but can't recall where. So the info is available.

Perhaps a separate topic asking what R looks like would call attention to what you seek.

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Thumos ( Member #69668) posted at 3:56 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

Why don't you tell her to research R and come up with a written description of what she thinks it looks like? Then you'll know what you're dealing with in terms of her cluelessness. And you can go from there. I predict she either won't do it, will do it only half-assedly, or it will be a tepid and confused wandering explanation of her feelings and resentments.

"True character is revealed in the choices a human being makes under pressure. The greater the pressure, the deeper the revelation, the truer the choice to the character's essential nature."

BH (me): 50, WW: 49
Married: Feb. 1996
DDAY: Dec. 20

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id 8676108
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EllieKMAS ( Member #68900) posted at 4:11 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

I predict she will not know what I mean, and so I will need to help her and spell it out. So I need an article I can print out that describes R.

Why do you need to hold her hand and spell it out and print it out for her? Is she intellectually challenged? Does she not have hands?

THIS is exactly what I am talking about hcsdi. YOU should not be 'spelling it out', printing anything, buying her a book - NUTHIN. She is a big girl who figured out allllll on her own how to cheat on her husband, so she can damn well figure out how to read a farking article. And the fact that 9 MONTHS has gone by with her putting NO effort into anything is the problem.

And before you say a whole bunch of 'but she....' type statements - I am speaking from personal experience here. My xwh did research after dday. What did he research you ask? How to be polyamorous. How to convince your spouse to have an open marriage. What did he NOT research? ANYTHING having to do with his affair.

Your ww has been johnny on the damn spot about figuring things out about her job, about what house and car an boat you need to buy for her, but has put NONE effort into reading a short damn book to try to help you, getting herself into IC, figuring out how to fix what she broke with her A.

STOP doing for her. Stop 'spelling it out'. Stop printing articles. Stop buying books and trying to make her read them. If she actually wanted to do any of that, she would have done it by now.

"No, it's you mothafucka, here's a list of reasons why." – Iliza Schlesinger

"Being weird is just a side effect of being awesome."– Unknown

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Thumos ( Member #69668) posted at 4:32 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

HCSDI,

I just want to share that I have some similarities with you:

1. My WW wouldn't read all the way through "How to Help Your Spouse Heal from Your Affair" - she kept telling me it was heavy-handed and guilt tripping her. She found the time to read through the entire oeuvre of a novelist in this time span. This should have been a huge red flag for me; instead I kept arguing with her about it and trying to get her to read it. She eventually did read it and it has helped, but I should NOT have waited.

2. My WW dragged her feet for THREE YEARS on a timeline, a polygraph and individual counseling. I should NOT have allowed this or tolerated it, but I did. I stopped tolerating within ONE MONTH of coming here to SI to share my story, though I remain in limbo with her, largely because of her failed polygraph, because I don't feel I have the truth, and because what I do know is such a tremendous deal breaker.

Some examples:

-AP was a friend of mine

-sex in our home

-trickle truth and footdragging after DDAY

-her gobsmacking attitude even a year later. For instance, she told me six months after DDAY that aspects of the affair were "private."

Again, I should NOT have tolerated this. I did. I regret tolerating these things very much. They were intolerable. They were and are untenable. My affection and trust for my wife (what was left of it) have been steadily eroded. I think we are headed for divorce. She doesn't want it; she desperately doesn't want it.

But sometimes the dealbreaker on top of all the lies and footdragging and defensiveness just smashes what chances for reconciliation might have been there.

Do you really want to string this along for another couple of years? I assure you from my vantage point, you do not.

"True character is revealed in the choices a human being makes under pressure. The greater the pressure, the deeper the revelation, the truer the choice to the character's essential nature."

BH (me): 50, WW: 49
Married: Feb. 1996
DDAY: Dec. 20

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This0is0Fine ( Member #72277) posted at 4:51 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

https://www.survivinginfidelity.com/healing_library/reconciliation/reconcile_musts.asp

Hit up the rest of the healing library if you are needing more "boiler plate" type advice.

Love is not a measure of capacity for pain you are willing to endure for your partner.

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Thumos ( Member #69668) posted at 5:05 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

I predict she will not know what I mean, and so I will need to help her and spell it out.

I mean, really. Really. No, really.

"She will not know what I mean"?! Is this woman seriously that deficient and emotionally crippled?

She has to have it explained it to her why you need a drip-drip-drip hug once a week or a sweaty-palmed dead-fish handholding whenever she can muster an iota of human compassion.

Can you SEE who and what you're dealing with here? Who she really is?

Your daughter already ran away screaming from this nightmare.

How long will you stay enmeshed in it?

"True character is revealed in the choices a human being makes under pressure. The greater the pressure, the deeper the revelation, the truer the choice to the character's essential nature."

BH (me): 50, WW: 49
Married: Feb. 1996
DDAY: Dec. 20

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gmc94 ( Member #62810) posted at 5:29 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

tell her to research R and come up with a written description of what she thinks it looks like? Then you'll know what you're dealing with in terms of her cluelessness. And you can go from there

I agree with this and EllieK.

Like Thumos, I also did ALL the "research" - for YEARS (unfortunately, even after I found SI).

In hindsight, I'm kind of angry at myself for that time I spent doing HIS work, instead of my own (and part of my own work, today, is to forgive myself for that - kind of its own Hakuna Matata).

Yes, IF you want to R, you will need to be very clear about what you want in a relationship. But that's a bridge to cross when/IF you get there. IOW, don't put the cart before the horse, cuz right now, that horse is NOT (and IMO, nowhere near) saddled up to start hauling anything.

To me, your boundary that "I cannot be in a marriage with unaddressed Adultery" is kind of enough. State that and see what her response is. For instance, if she says something like I need you to help me understand what that looks like? then YOU get to decide if you want to provide that help. Or not.

Based on everything you've posted, it sure seems to me that any kind of laundry list of what you need will be met with her (usual - and wholly unempathetic and inappropriate) heaping of blame upon YOU for your "ultimatums" or whatever. That, in and of itself, is a data point that shows she is NOT R material.

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

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Oldwounds ( Member #54486) posted at 5:54 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

I think I could come up with something, but maybe someone has something already?

While betrayal behavior is frighteningly Universal, recovery behavior is very unique to each of us.

In other words, I think every R looks different.

I’m beyond amazed I stayed, I’m even more amazed at how much better our marriage is today.

I mentioned briefly before my wife kept her A a secret for 18-years, our M was stuck — because of this secret. She knew the only way forward was to be honest. Despite the confession, I still had four months of TT as she tried to explain her ‘reasons’ and mitigate her responsibility.

Your wife is approaching this recovery as a person who was justified in her actions.

Here is what my R looked like to get here from the Hell you’re in now:

The first two YEARS were horrible, but it was me trying to figure out ME. What did I want, what did I need in order for this relationship to be worth my love, my time and my effort. At the end of year two, for a moment, I was certain no amount of love and care could bring us back.

However, my wife understood — regardless of what our M looked like, there is no justification for choosing to cheat. There are always other options to repair an M other than cheating.

1. My wife told me everything I asked her about. 10 million questions, she answered them all. First step to getting SOME trust back, not all, but enough.

2. My wife owned her choices. All of it. Zero blame for me or our M.

3. My wife was slow to be vulnerable, as most WS are. After all — they KNOW the damage they caused and it’s tough for them to invest or re-invest in the zero sum M they created with those bad choices. But she got there, she understood she had to lead the relationship back by jumping in first.

4. My wife had to be consistent in her actions. We’re starting year six and everyday since dday she still checks on me to see how I’m doing.

5. I had to let down the walls I built after being crushed by infidelity. If I was going to get the M I wanted, I had to invest and re-invest my feelings or we were headed for limbo and D. I didn’t really get all in until year three.

Our M now is one where we share what we’re actually thinking versus pretending things are okay. We never compromise, ever. The old transactional M is what got us in trouble in the first place. We look at what we can give to the other instead of taking from the other.

The biggest part of this, and the advice people are trying to give you is, you have to heal yourself enough to make a decision from a position of strength.

Your wife has the proverbial high ground. She thinks she deserved to have ‘fun’ at your expense and your first disastrous MC validated her bullshit.

Until she truly understands the damage she caused and CARES about it and you, well, the list above doesn’t really mean much.

Take care of you first.

You’ve already said you can’t be in the relationship as is.

That’s an awesome first step.

To me, R or D doesn’t matter.

At all.

To me, you have to heal YOU first and decide what you want, then you can offer R or not, or D, or however you get back to a space where you feel great about who you are.

Get back to your badass self.

Then tell her to get with the program or be gone.

Married 34+ years, together 40+ years
Two awesome adult sons.
Dday 6/16 4-year LTA Survived
Restoration takes time.
"Circumstances don't make the man, they only reveal him to himself." ― Epictetus

posts: 4176   ·   registered: Aug. 4th, 2016   ·   location: PNW. The adventure continues.
id 8676156
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DevastatedDee ( Member #59873) posted at 6:03 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

I am not in favor of telling a WS how to be a basic decent human being. We used to have excuses for not knowing things. Maybe in 1987 a WS needed some clues handed to them by the BS about what to do in these situations. Maybe the local library wasn't stocked with information. We live in the internet age now. How are we all here? We all got online and searched desperately for help in dealing with a huge trauma. We created usernames and typed words onto a screen and asked people around the world who had been through the same thing for advice. We read books, listen to audiobooks and podcasts. We found therapists. We, the hurt ones, put huge amounts of effort into figuring out how to heal and what to do about the marriage.

We didn't even do the wrong thing and we put in all of this effort. Do all BSs have really high IQs and WSs struggle to tie their own shoes? Are WSs incapable of typing into search bars? We know damned well that they can all use the internet. Hell, they carry access to unimaginable amounts of knowledge in their pockets all day. If a WS can use the internet to cheat, they can damned sure use it to figure out how to clean up that mess afterwards.

A WS does not need to be told that infidelity is marriage-ending devastating shit. EVERYONE knows that. That is why so much effort is put into the secrecy. It takes a lot of work to manage cheating.

Sit back and watch a WS's actions after DDay. See where their priorities lie. See what they put effort into. SEE THEM. That is who they are. Make decisions about your own life based on those observations. Any effort to hand-hold them into this world of empathy and decency is doomed to failure because it is an attempt to control and change another person. It isn't authentic change that comes from within. I don't know why we human beings work this way, but we do. We have to want to change due to facing some sort of consequences and that desire does not come from the outside.

DDay: 06/07/2017
MH - RA on DDay.
Divorced a serial cheater (prostitutes and lord only knows who and what else).

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sisoon ( Guide #31240) posted at 7:33 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

I predict she will not know what I mean,

OK ... when I'm invested in a relationship, and when I don't know what someone else in the relationship means, I ask questions. Why won't your W?

and so I will need to help her and spell it out.

Where does that come from?

I suspect it comes from co-dependance or grandiosity. You can't change her. You can't control her. She's an adult, and it makes no sense to treat her as if she's a child. You're not asking all that much of her, and you can assume she knows how to do research, how to read with understanding, etc.

So I need an article I can print out that describes R.

Yes, I think you do need something like that.

The thing is, you need to read it with ...um... understanding. The 'article' I'm about to show you guides you WRT what to look for in a remorseful WS. Your task is to compare your W's behavior to that of a remorseful WS and see similarities and differences, and act accordingly.

I think I've given you the link before. Did you read it? Why didn't it make an impact previously? Maybe the reason you didn't get what I thought you'd get from the post is healthy. Maybe not.

http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/healing_library/reconciliation/what-every-wayward-spouse-needs-to-know.asp - if this resonates with you, I suggest printing it off and giving the printout to your H as 'something you found on the web.' My reco: DO NOT tell your H about SI until you're sure he's on board for R.

*****

I have some difficulty with How to Help Your BS Heal..., because the author recommends love bombing and catering to the BS to the extent of what I think of not being honest about what the WS wants and doesn't want to do. I think dishonesty kills R. I think doing something for one's BS that one can't keep doing happily will hurt R.

*****

A fellow BS, lordhasaplan?, gave me permission to share his R contract. His d-day was 7 months before mine. I've included it below. Would your W be willing to agree to do the things in the contract that you would like her to do? If not, you have a stark choice in front of you - walk, or live a very difficult life.

1. No contact with OM at all. Any attempts at contact by OM are to be brought to my attention and you are not to read anything that was sent by him, or answer phone if it is him. No conversation at all is to take place between the two of you.

2. Hard stop Deal Breakers:

a. Another affair and I am done

b. Any lies about any relationships with others I am done

c. Transparency at all times, you turn into a liar again, I’m out.

d. We don’t stop counseling without mutual agreement.

3. Complete openness for both of us, cell phones, email, any check is OK! Clothes wallet, checking acct etc…. Suspicion is now healthy for building trust.

4. Walls and Windows for both of us!

a. Never alone with another man/woman unless discussed ahead of time

b. Never alone in a car with another man/woman

c. No conversations about our marriage or any other marriage with another man/woman

d. Never bring anyone into our home without disclosure

5. Open and Honest Communication- No secrets, no matter how hard it will be to hear.

a. Discuss all attractions

b. Discuss all third party attention

c. Discuss all feelings good and bad

d. Be honest with yourself and aware of your feelings, then communicate that

6. Any questions about the affair are to be answered honestly for the rest of our life. Never be done answering questions about it.

7. Friday nights will be for scheduling our lives together.

a. Must plan at least one date night every other week

b. Must have at least 10 hour or more of our time

c. Must have at least one night of family fun time

8. Reconnecting and reassessing WE, I would like to do this daily but realize it won’t happen over time but once a week we can do this at least.

9. Meeting each others emotional needs. Reassessing how we are doing every quarter. Always have the conversation when they are not.

10. Contact about comings and goings at all times.

11. Do one thing special for each other a month, Give rather than take!

12. DS’s activities are a top priority for both of us. Any conflicts are to be discussed and addressed together.

13. We don't do anything in absence of one another that we wouldn't do in the others presence.

14. Confidants must be "friends of the marriage" and must be mutually agreed upon.

15. Social Happy Hours (outside of actual work functions) are to be attended together or not attended at all.

16. We never do anything without enthusiastic agreement between us.

[This message edited by sisoon at 1:44 PM, July 16th (Friday)]

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

posts: 26018   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8676195
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Unsure2019 ( Member #71350) posted at 7:39 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

HSSDIT,

Not another thread!! You’ve started a number of threads and you keep getting the same great advice over and over and over again. You either argue with it, want to change it or just plain ignore it. It’s just really painful to watch you turn yourself inside out trying to get an outcome that you want. You keep giving away your power. When you WW looked like she finally might be getting it a little, you short-circuited it by consoling her and telling her she is really a good person.

She’s driving the bus because you gave her the keys. You need to pull the cord and get off at the next stop. You really need to risk losing the M if you want any chance to save it.

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OwningItNow ( Member #52288) posted at 9:51 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

"and so I will need to help her and spell it out"

I did a lot of this, too. So many of us do. Guess what? It did not help. I finally had to admit to myself that my H was not an actual idiot, he simply had no desire or incentive to see things my way (aka empathize).

Then what?

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 3:51 PM, July 16th (Friday)]

me: BS/WS
h: WS/BS

Reject the rejector.
Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5263   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8676252
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EllieKMAS ( Member #68900) posted at 10:03 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

I did a lot of this, too. So many of us do.

Count me in on that too.

Looking back with the benefit of hindsight and my own healing, I think I was desperately casting about for something, anything, that would make him... wake up? Give a shit? Admit what he did? Like I would find *the* article or *the* book or *the* magical series of words that would make him "get it".

But hcsdi - there is no book or article or series of words that will "make" a wayward get it. People only change when the pain of staying the same outweighs the pain that change brings. Right now, and since dday, your ww's world is still just as comfy as it ever was. All her manipulation does is make you stand down so she can keep on going being comfy and not having to deal with the choice she made and how that choice has wreaked havoc on you and her children.

My xwh was the same way. Until I MADE his world uncomfortable enough by refusing to back down and shut up anymore - and I did that by setting hard and firm boundaries regarding his behavior and attitude towards me. Yes we divorced. But it also booted me out of infidelity and set me on the path to healing.

"No, it's you mothafucka, here's a list of reasons why." – Iliza Schlesinger

"Being weird is just a side effect of being awesome."– Unknown

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BluerThanBlue ( Member #74855) posted at 10:31 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

HowCouldSheDoIt, you already posted a thread asking for requirements for Reconciliation. I know because I spent an hour writing a list for you and you also got tons of detailed, outstanding advice from other people in that thread and all your previous threads. Have you paid attention to any of it?

You don’t need anymore advice; you have plenty of it. You should know at this point what your dealbreakers, your boundaries, and your expectations are… you just have to grow the stones to take action.

Edit;add: As for Sisoon’s list, while it’s very thorough and she should be doing everything that’s on it, I don’t think it will be effective. It’s nearly impossible to police what another person does… let alone what they’re thinking (ie, “Discuss all attractions”). The only thing you can do is state what you will and won’t tolerate. If you have dealbreakers, make sure they should be limited to the few and that you are 1000% certain you will file if or when they occur.

[This message edited by BluerThanBlue at 4:39 PM, July 16th (Friday)]

BW, age 40
Divorced WH in 2015; now happily remarried to a great guy

I edit my comments a lot for spelling, grammar, typos, etc.

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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 11:02 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

You're a tough nut to crack.

Thanks?

One of the reasons people keep writing to you is that we hope to get through to you and see changed behavior.

I appreciate it. I hope to be able to report on some changes.

Another reason for the responses is to communicate with lurkers. I hope you see some humor in that.

I don't see the humor, But I don't take any offense. Replying for the sake of others is altruistic, I expect it from someone like you.

I appreciate all the replies. These are my thoughts.

WW is leaving soon for a few weeks and starting a new travelling life after being a SAHM for almost 20 years. I really like the idea of during that time just playing it cool, having some fun me-time, maybe I'll buy a motorcycle, new clothes, new look, that kind of thing. I even wondered about posting pictures on FB about the cool things and places I'm experiencing. I usually don't use FB much, and I would probably just do that to make her jealous so I'll have to think about that, but regardless in that time I'm just not going to focus on the M and just have fun.

But WW did say she wanted to fix things. And yesterday she did start a discussion about how she felt about something I had said (story for another time). It's a small step, I mean since d-day she has started a discussion only a few times. So she is trying, albeit crumbs.

Since I think everyone on this thread agrees she's not a candidate for R, this was my thought:

#1) She said she wanted to fix things, and she did say she's not sure what to do, that I get angry if she "does things wrong." (she's right, I have gotten very upset but it is mostly her cluelessness. Example not long after d-day she wrote me a love note but didn't make any mention at all for the cheating. None. I said the note didn't make me happy, and said "you left out the part about the adultery." She got pissed and shouted "I can't do anything right!!!" so this is the mindset she carries that she's afraid of me to take any steps forward, that all I do is criticize her when she tries.)

#2) I don't want to spell out requirements for R. Before she leaves, I want to have a discussion about what it means to R. I've looked through the healing library and I don't find anything that is simple (like for a 6 year old) about R itself: The R is not just staying married, R is for making amends for the cheating, R is about healing the marriage, R is re-breaking the nose so the dr. can fix it right, etc. What is the work for R? Why is R difficult?

#3) So before she leaves I wanted to leave that with her, and I wanted to have some additional info about approaching R. The mindset, the determination to fix things, having the vision, and maybe some examples of what it means to be ready for R, and some examples of what it means to not be ready for R. And then punctuate again (as I've told her before) that I can't just stay married and put it behind us, my body physically won't allow it.

#4) Then we wait. While she's gone, does she bring it up? Does she ask any questions about it? When she comes home during that time does she mention it? When I go to visit? Anything different? Any extra effort? That kind of thing. It really is no different that what many have suggested, all I'm doing is putting a little bit of a roadmap in front of her.

#5) Depending on how it goes, after these 6 weeks and she gets some stability, she may not not pursue R, she might even surprise me and pursue D. I predict however, that she's going to start talking about moving again. My line is "before we talk about moving, I think we should consider our future" and repeat again that I'm unable to just stay married, and that I never wanted to D but I can't do this, etc.

So that's my idea. She might surprise me and I'm hopeful, but after almost 10 months my ability to predict the future is getting pretty good.

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: 242   ·   registered: Mar. 3rd, 2021
id 8676278
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