Newest Member: Serenity7

Reconciliation :
Could use some encouragement, I screwed up

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EllieKMAS ( Member #68900) posted at 11:26 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

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.

Putting aside the fact that YOU shouldn't be doing any 'roadworks' for her - that SHE should be bending over backwards to start the roadworks on her own - the real question isn't about her at all.

What if she doesn't bring it up?

What if she doesn't make 'extra' (extra from zero ain't hard though) effort?

What if she doesn't ask you any questions?

What will you do if she does none of that?

That's what I've been trying to get through to you - R takes BOTH of you and thus far YOU are the only one even trying anything. Your ww has shown a complete disinterest in doing any of that work. Mind you in that same time, she has shown plenty of interest in finding herself a new job, researching new houses and cars and boats, planning and going on vacations, and finding any reason to blame you for her 'lacks'.

So less about what SHE will or will not do, because you have no control whatsoever about that.

What do YOU want? What will you do if she acts predictable and does nothing about this? What if, god forbid, you find out about more ONS while she's galivanting around?

"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

posts: 3140   ·   registered: Nov. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: CO
id 8676285
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gmc94 ( Member #62810) posted at 11:44 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

She got pissed and shouted "I can't do anything right!!!

Dude. My WH to a "T" - and still today.

Notice that her responses are ALL (and apparently always) about HER?

That is what lack of empathy looks like.

My WH did/does the same shit. He'll spend HOURS trying to find the 'perfect' restaurant, or bike ride, or whatever... and then get all butt hurt and give the whole "I'm a failure" crap when I would point out what I needed from him as an adulterer was not love bombing, but digging in, and doing the hard ass effing work of figuring his shit out. Honesty. Empathy. Candor. A way to feel seen, safe, and soothed. None of which was going to happen with a bike ride or a beautiful bouquet of flowers or some fancy dinner (or a house, boat, etc).

And re-read EllieK's posts... esp the part about you not being able to control what she does.

[This message edited by gmc94 at 5:45 PM, July 16th, 2021 (Friday)]

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 8676291
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This0is0Fine ( Member #72277) posted at 11:59 PM on Friday, July 16th, 2021

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.)

To be fair, you can't expect a love note to mention an affair. I mean, it wouldn't be very lovey dovey to be like. "You mean everything to me. I want you and only you. Sorry about the one time a blew a guy in a hotel room."

So in *this specific instance* I think maybe you were overly critical. Generally though, "I can never do anything right!" is a deflection and excuse to not keep trying.

#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?

The work is very individualized. A lot of it is overcoming internal obstacles to healing. Unfortunately it's hard to generalize. In your case, you need to learn to consistently and openly let your negative feelings be known. In her case it means hearing those, accepting them, not becoming defensive, and apologizing for causing them.

That's hard to do.

#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.

If only someone wrote a book telling someone how to help their spouse heal from their affair...

#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.

I can tell you right now. If you don't give her the roadmap you definitely won't see a change. If you are going to handhold her, you should do it forwardly. "I expect us to make progress toward R even when you are away. I'd like to hear about any thoughts you have about it while you are traveling."

Otherwise you are just gonna get a big fat nothing from 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.

She could come around semi-miraculously. She will almost certainly continue to minimize, rugsweep, and blameshift. It is extremely unlikely she will move to D. If this had been an exit, you would know by now.

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.

You know the risks.

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

posts: 1329   ·   registered: Dec. 11th, 2019
id 8676295
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BluerThanBlue ( Member #74855) posted at 12:17 AM on Saturday, July 17th, 2021

Need I remind you once again that everyone spelled out what R looked like and gave you requirements for R. You’re making excuses for doing nothing because you’re dreading saying or doing anything that might prompt her to leave you… even though she’s already acting single.

As for guidance on what “R should look like”, no one here can tell you what kind of marriage is satisfying and or at least acceptable to you. If you’re confused, you can start by thinking about the marriage you envisioned when you asked her to be your wife.

[This message edited by BluerThanBlue at 6:19 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.

posts: 474   ·   registered: Jul. 13th, 2020
id 8676299
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ToastedOats ( Member #49617) posted at 1:17 AM on Saturday, July 17th, 2021

Dear OP,

Please just stop it. For the sake of your sanity and hers. Please stop. You will turn her into a robot that will not make you happy. As a mh who has stayed and reconcile for 4 years now. Regain your dinigty and self esteem. Your trying to fill your ego with her actions it doesn't work.

Your hurt. Rightfully so! The fact is you cannot base your joy and happiness in life from your broken marriage and a broken her. How can she? She was broken enough to cheat on you. You need to recognize what YOU want before you drive yourself mad. You cannot control her, she cannot heal you, and she will not make you happy. Stop projecting.

It's like kissing a woman to get a kiss or saying I love you to hear it back

You told her what you need. You've laid it out, go your own path. The first time my wife had an ea I should have realized this. I would have never let myself go down this road.

What I learned was just go forward. Right or wrong just go. If she goes with you she will if not that's it. The more you project what you want... the more she will reject you.

Someone said the one who cares less has all the power. So just move forward. You should be caring about rebuilding you. You asked her what you need then let her figure it out. You cannot make her. She has to do that on her own.

Read nmmng. Live it. Rebuild your self esteem. She will love you for it or you will find someone who appreciates the opportunity to have a communicator in thier life.

posts: 59   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015
id 8676309
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ToastedOats ( Member #49617) posted at 1:22 AM on Saturday, July 17th, 2021

Asking diminishes the value of action I her mind and yours. She hates because she feels forced and cannot get In touch with her own feelings and you hate because it feels like you have to run a marathon which tires you out. Just move to a point you can heal without her and the. Make a decision based on her actions. If she really doesnt know what to do she will ask. If not then she just doesnt have it I her and nothing you do will make it better.

posts: 59   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015
id 8676313
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 2:41 PM on Sunday, July 18th, 2021

Thank you everyone for the replies. Things are a little down in the house today as DD left this morning.

As always, thank you for the replies and time.

I'll look forward to updating when I have something to report.

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 8676541
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RocketRaccoon ( Member #54620) posted at 6:21 AM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

#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.

The common denominator in all the points above, is that she is going for a 6wk holiday without you.

She will not give up her holiday to stay and try and patch things up with you, as that would be too much effort. She needs to go enjoy her life.

I don't know about you, but if she were truly remorseful, she would have cancelled any and all trips to be there and crawl through the mud with you to try and achieve a successful R....

It also surprises me that you are enabling it (unless she paid for all her holiday expenses).

You cannot cure stupid

posts: 888   ·   registered: Aug. 12th, 2016   ·   location: South East Asia
id 8676647
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Stevesn ( Member #58312) posted at 12:42 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

I would like to reiterate what I posted before on another thread of yours.

A WW who is truly all in on rebuilding the relationship her affair destroyed would not be leaving her H for 6 weeks and starting a new career that takes her away from him 5 of 7 days a week thereafter. That’s the last thing she’s be thinking about doing.

The fact that she is moving forward at warp speed to do exactly that tells me she is not very interested at helping you heal AT ALL.

Have you considered how it’s going to feel each day she is gone wondering which classmate she is flirting with this time? Do they all have their own rooms at this place? Are you going to be wondering who is visiting hers after she hangs up with you in the evening.

A truly remorseful WW, if she did have to go would go all out to try and put her BH’s mind at ease. Has she offered to start FaceTime with you right after dinner and keep it on til you wake up in the morning?

Has she offered to have you come with her and stay in her room with you? She’s proven herself untrustworthy. How will this time help her change that fact? How will you ever know that she’s not running into supply closets with classmates? I’m sure that’s not her intent but was it her intent when she cheated on you on her trip w your daughter?

A Truly remorseful WW would be focused on her BH and researching what it takes to rebuild a marriage.

Sure if she hadn’t cheated and wanted to start a new career this all would be fine. But she did cheat. And that changes everything.

She continues her wayward ways by only thinking about herself and what she needs to be happy. And I see very little to nothing about what she’s doing for the man she emotionally injured. She’s shot a bullet thru your chest and is letting you slowly bleed out, occasionally saying “what can I do?”

And if she comes up with something or you lead her to it she either says “oh I can’t/won’t do that” or “sure, let me see when I can fit that into my busy schedule “

I understand you are trying to be the good guy here, lead by example and somehow shame her into doing the right thing. But somone without shame cannot be shamed. You are playing only with yourself here, feeding off little kibbles she throws at you so you don’t realize she’s actually starving you to death.

To me, I’d tell her you are fully aware she’s mailing it in, doesn’t care about you one bit, the lack of effort or taking the lead on rebuilding is completely obvious and the fact that she’s essentially walking out of day to day life with you says everything you need to know.

In my opinion her taking on this new way of life will essentially end your relationship as you know it. I’d let her know you want a partner who is more involved, not more absent and that if she moves forward with this change, by essentially walking out the door, that you’ll be working to legally end the relationship her actions and choices have already destroyed.

Sorry, just how I see what is happening in your world. I fully expect you to deny and deflect what I have said. So please go ahead, let it fly.

[This message edited by Stevesn at 6:45 AM, July 19th (Monday)]

fBBF. Just before proposing, broke it off after her 2nd confirmed PA in 2 yrs. 9 mo later I met the wonderful woman I have spent the next 30 years with.

posts: 3166   ·   registered: Apr. 17th, 2017
id 8676668
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DIFM ( Member #1703) posted at 1:12 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

HowCouldSheDoIt, your way is not working. And, based on hundreds and hundreds of very real life previous examples, it will not work. Pretty much this, over and over.

Need I remind you once again that everyone spelled out what R looked like and gave you requirements for R. You’re making excuses for doing nothing because you’re dreading saying or doing anything that might prompt her to leave you… even though she’s already acting single.

....followed by self reflection on why you are not able to implement what others have repeatedly suggested.

posts: 1726   ·   registered: Jul. 14th, 2003
id 8676671
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 1:12 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

I fully expect you to deny and deflect what I have said.

Not at all. I appreciate you taking the time to write it.

I'm not denying it. Wishing it were different - yes, looking for signs I'm wrong - yes, dragging my feet - yes... but I'm not denying 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 8676672
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Stevesn ( Member #58312) posted at 2:57 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

Not at all. I appreciate you taking the time to write it.

I'm not denying it. Wishing it were different - yes, looking for signs I'm wrong - yes, dragging my feet - yes... but I'm not denying it.

Ok. Then when you get a chance I would love it if you responded to it. Would love your thoughts on it.

Thanks

fBBF. Just before proposing, broke it off after her 2nd confirmed PA in 2 yrs. 9 mo later I met the wonderful woman I have spent the next 30 years with.

posts: 3166   ·   registered: Apr. 17th, 2017
id 8676693
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Unsure2019 ( Member #71350) posted at 6:11 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

As usual, you won't deny it. Instead you'll just ignore all the advice and keep asking for more. I don't think I can follow your threads anymore. It's just too painful.

posts: 204   ·   registered: Aug. 21st, 2019   ·   location: California
id 8676750
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 6:59 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

Stevesn:

when you get a chance I would love it if you responded to it. Would love your thoughts on it.

Your analysis is excellent. I will absolutely respond when I have a bit more time, I don't have much of a lunch break today.

Unsure:

you'll just ignore all the advice and keep asking for more. I don't think I can follow your threads anymore. It's just too painful.

Well obviously that's up to you if you want to read / respond. I can see how you think I'm ignoring advice, but really it would be more fair to say I'm having difficulty with it, and hesitant to execute. Or looking for another way would also be appropriate. Hearing other views put in different perspectives is also true.

I get a lot of validation when I share a story of the shit that I've put up with, and I can see that it presents I want more to complain about the problem vs. solving the problem. So there's that.

Also, the attention itself on this forum has helped me a lot. Writing and getting responses has been very 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: 239   ·   registered: Mar. 3rd, 2021
id 8676767
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Robert22205https ( Member #65547) posted at 7:05 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

You are not alone.

We're all been where you are. At some point you'll be ready to take action. In the interim, questioning, seeking advice, and venting is fine.

posts: 2409   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: DC
id 8676772
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 11:51 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

Stevesn:

As I forshadowed, your analysis is spot on.

I don't believe she has ever considered what she needs to do to make amends for the A. So her throwing herself into her career is consistent with her actions right after D-Day.

Have you considered how it’s going to feel each day she is gone

Yes, it will be difficult. This will be the third time she's left home, granted this is much longer than before and she'll be alone, but I know what it felt like. I will be troubled by it. And you're very right, if she truly cared she would be doing something to make it better. I'm not sure what that would look like, but she would be making an effort.

A Truly remorseful WW would be focused on her BH and researching what it takes to rebuild a marriage

That is true. I don't believe she is truly remorseful. I thought I saw it a few weeks ago, but is has disappeared.

I understand you are trying to be the good guy here, lead by example and somehow shame her into doing the right thing. But somone without shame cannot be shamed. You are playing only with yourself here, feeding off little kibbles she throws at you so you don’t realize she’s actually starving you to death.

This is exactly right! One difference though... I know full well that she's starving me to death. But it isn't me that's starving... it is the M that's starving. Single HCSDI is going to be just fine. Married HCSDI is not in a good place though. He knows full well that WW is not putting in any effort to repair the M.

To me, I’d tell her you are fully aware she’s mailing it in, doesn’t care about you one bit, the lack of effort or taking the lead on rebuilding...

It is more my style to tell her that I give up, and that I no longer can pretend that she's going to come around to a place where the M will heal. I'm too tired of waking each morning to unaddressed A, and going to sleep still unaddressed. No plan, no ideas, no actions, no efforts. Nothing. I can't do it anymore, it's killing me. I give up.

her taking on this new way of life will essentially end your relationship as you know it. I’d let her know you want a partner who is more involved, not more absent

That's not exactly how I feel about it, and I feel the relationship is has basically been dying a slow death anyway. She can take many steps to make amends for the cheating and by now probably be in a place where we have so many routines in place that I'm not concerned about her travelling, just like it used to be.

I'm not sure how to package the "legal steps to end the M" discussion. Never having done it, I think a short honest "I can't do this M anymore, and I think we should D" is probably the best.

Now I just have to figure out when...

So thank you for the reply.

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 8676865
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 11:56 PM on Monday, July 19th, 2021

TIF:

To be fair, you can't expect a love note to mention an affair. I mean, it wouldn't be very lovey dovey to be like. "You mean everything to me. I want you and only you. Sorry about the one time a blew a guy in a hotel room."

I absolutely do expect a love note to mention an affair. It could be something small like "And I'm so sorry for breaking your heart" or "for the pain I've caused" or "for hurting you" or anything. I finished the note with such hurt that she didn't feel the A was important enough to mention.

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 8676869
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Unhinged ( Member #47977) posted at 4:51 AM on Tuesday, July 20th, 2021

I can see how you think I'm ignoring advice, but really it would be more fair to say I'm having difficulty with it, and hesitant to execute.

Brother, I'm sorry you find yourself in this situation. I'm sure it hurts like nothing you've ever experienced before. At least, that was my experience.

It seems to me that your WW either can't or won't pull the trigger on your marriage, for whatever reasons. She's going to force you to do it because, of course, you're the bad guy and she's the victim.

I can understand your hesitancy to take action. It's not uncommon, man. Not by a long shot. Far too many betrayed spouses hold on to hope too long. That's understandable, too. "Hope dies last," as they say.

Have you consulted a lawyer?

Have you read "Understanding the 180?"

https://www.survivinginfidelity.com/healing_library/confrontation/understanding-the-180.asp

You might be surprised to find out that many wayward spouses just can't believe their betrayed spouses would ever leave them, no matter how shitty their behavior, until they actually see a petition for divorce and are handed the pen with which to sign. Sometimes, that'll snap them back to reality faster than you can say: "sign it!" Maybe that will wake up your WW, too. Then again, she just might sign it. Either way, you'll be on your way to a happier, healthier life.

Heading towards divorce
D-Day April, 2015

"The Universe is not short on wake-up calls. We're just quick to hit the snooze button."
-Brene Brown

posts: 6361   ·   registered: May. 21st, 2015   ·   location: Colorado
id 8676927
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 1:17 PM on Tuesday, July 20th, 2021

Unhinged:

Yes, I consulted a lawyer about a month after d-day. I have a good idea on what it is going to look like (which is painful) but now that WW is working it will cut down on the maintenance quite a bit.

Thank you for the reminder about "Understanding the 180." I have read it again. It is good advice, I believe I glossed over the mindset of the 180 before. The past week since the start of this thread I have been in I guess a "soft 180" of just unplugging and not really talking with WW.

It's been over a week since our short lived R, she has made no mention of getting back on track. I don't know if she'll be surprised or not to have me say to her "I give up, can't do it anymore."

Thank you for the kind words.

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 8676956
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 HowCouldSheDoIt (original poster Member #78431) posted at 1:20 PM on Tuesday, July 20th, 2021

Unhinged:

Not to TJ but if you could, your signature reads "Headed for divorce" and I'm curious if that is still current, are you still married, in the middle of a D? Did it wake her up?

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 8676958
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