Newest Member: ibelieveinspring

Reconciliation :
Got Away With It


 Avnp (original poster new member #79393) posted at 6:16 AM on Friday, September 24th, 2021

Thank you all for your words.

All valid points.

I just really want to get to this point that is the new "normal" for me.

I went out on my own tonight with a friend to an Halloween event and just kept thinking "he wouldn’t have come here with me, but probably for her" and I also texted him and he admitted the whole affair he knew even in the moment it wasn’t anything serious or real. But all fake and fantasy, yet my thoughts are…you destroyed our marriage for fake. Makes it worse - sorry I’ve been drinking. Lol probably doesn’t help.

But at what point is where someone knows what they’re risking and keeps going, even when they know the payoff isn’t going to be worth it. Baffles me. Just seems very cold hearted and hurtful.

posts: 13   ·   registered: Sep. 13th, 2021
id 8689968

Sofarsogood ( member #71991) posted at 1:57 PM on Friday, September 24th, 2021

I think at the time of their infatuation, many aren't capable of recognizing the amount of hurt they eventually cause. They are full of "feel good" emotions and don't consider the possibility of being found out. Once the "shine" wears off, they can't believe they even went there. They might be feeling shame and embarrassment when they come to the realization that they've done this to their partner and there's no going back. The wayward behavior is on them, and unless they can work on themselves and become a safe partner, the betrayed will eventually realize they deserve better.

posts: 293   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8690015

HouseOfPlane ( member #45739) posted at 2:00 PM on Friday, September 24th, 2021

But at what point is where someone knows what they’re risking and keeps going, even when they know the payoff isn’t going to be worth it. Baffles me.

Avnp, humans are a funny animal. Not always "haha" funny either.

Did you know that research shows that that people with incomes of $70,000 shoplift 30% more than those earning $20,000 a year? That rich people shoplift a lot? Lots of other similar behaviors amongst our kind.

Go figure...

Sending strength!

DDay 1986: R'd, it was hard, hard work.

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?”
― Mary Oliver

posts: 2750   ·   registered: Nov. 25th, 2014
id 8690016

Sofarsogood ( member #71991) posted at 4:28 PM on Friday, September 24th, 2021

HOP makes an interesting point. Thinking in generalities, somebody who is never content with what they have is missing something in their general make up. Some of us have been taught or have learned to value and take care of what we have. I have people in my life that have received things too easily, therefore, these material things are not taken care of, and are perceived as throw away. They're always looking for "the next cool thing" to satisfy something in themselves. This can pertain to objects and relationships.

posts: 293   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8690043

 Avnp (original poster new member #79393) posted at 5:27 PM on Friday, September 24th, 2021

Humans are funny and how there are so many different ways people live and see life

What I can't grasp is the fact of knowing that what you're doing isn't worth what you already have in front of you or just the thought of "I don't really feel this way...this is all fake and I'm just saying this for the validation/feel good feelings that come from this" at the same time of knowing that this is wrong and that there is a hight probability it would lead to D. Because that is what my WS is saying - that he knew it wasn't worth it and never had feelings for her during or after and knew I would D him once I found out. To which I surprised him and myself, that I did want to R or at least make some attempt at it.

But maybe he was already going down the rabbit hole and knew it was going to end badly for him either way, so he continued to live in the feel goods as long as he could before he knew his life would be changed. Or just didn't think at all which is what I'm leaning towards haha, it seems deep thought about consequences or causes and effects while deep in the A isn't something WS's do. And it seems as BS's (at least for me)try to over analyze every move and choice he made for/in A when maybe it wasn't even that deep- that they just do it because they can and wanted to regardless of everything.

I never understood that concept because I do cherish the things I find dear and I know that somethings that are "shiny and new" always turn old and get boring. That you're trading shit for some different shit - that's probably not going to be any better than the last.

I really hope that moving forward I will be able to focus more on me - instead of an affair that happened, because I can't change that or control it. I just wish someone could find me the remote from the movie Click so I can fast forward to the part where I am healed and okay. Although I suppose getting there is the whole journey- one day at time smile

Thanks for everyone's input and inspiring words when I needed it.

posts: 13   ·   registered: Sep. 13th, 2021
id 8690061

greenirisheyes ( member #7983) posted at 12:54 AM on Monday, October 4th, 2021

AVNP, I don't usually offer advice because my husband's affair happened a long time ago and I am very removed from it and there is usually someone already here who offers similar advice to what I would. But, I wanted to add this: You say you are young-ish, LOL, and have no children. Given that, unless he is turning himself absolutely inside out to make things right with you...leave!

I was 26 years into my marriage, had two children and assets, but I was still done. Within the first week of discovering his infidelity I had interviewed two divorce attorneys on the phone, gotten myself into divorce therapy and kicked my husband out, the night of discovery.

Initially, during phone conversations, I did the hysterical "why", "how could you" crap, until I realized we were just going around in circles. After a couple of weeks of him burning up my cell phone, I told him to stop calling me. That if he wanted to talk to our adult children (one in college, one in high school), he could call the house phone and if they wanted to talk to him they would pick it up. I would not be picking it up. If they wanted to see him that was between him and them. I was only willing to speak to him going forward about the bills, the house, and the kids. We didn't speak for several weeks and then Thanksgiving came. He called and no one would talk to him.

During this time, I did not know if he was still seeing the OW. He was living with his mom in another town is all I knew. The more I ignored him, the more desperate he became. Finally, in mid-December he contacted me about having Christmas gifts for our kids so I agreed to meet him in a neutral location to pick them up. When we met, he asked me to attend marriage counseling with him, something I'd asked for repeatedly prior to our blow-up and he'd always refused. Now, I refused saying that I was already in divorce therapy.

This propelled him into taking action. We started talking and at the end of December I attended therapy with him. We didn't tell our kids and I didn't let him move back home until the following October. I made him prove to me he got how horrible what he did to me was and he was taking steps to "fix" himself. It was a long, painful process with many steps forward and backward.

As much as you may want to R, if he doesn't walk through fire and glass to make things right with you, leave him. R is painful and if he is not firmly entrenched by your side, you won't make it. A one point, during therapy, I asked him why I should consider reconciliation with him. I had already walked around the big, steaming pile of shit he had dumped in my path and I was on my way to independence and out of infidelity. Now, he was asking me to walk back in front of the steaming pile of shit, pick up each piece, examine it and figure out where to put it. Why would I do that? I would be going backward. It did't make sense. He told me that if I kept moving forward I would be doing it alone, but if I came back and dealt with the pile of shit, he'd be right there beside me, helping me deal with it. So, we ditched our old marriage, and started a new one. A better one. It's not perfect, but it's pretty good. So, it can be done, but only if he is willing to do the work.

Reconciled since 10/2002
Married 40 years - 2015!
We're better then ever, but I won't be sending the skank a thank you card.

“We all wear masks, and the time comes when we cannot remove them without removing some of our own skin.” ~André

posts: 397   ·   registered: Aug. 24th, 2005   ·   location: Mid-Atlantic Coast
id 8691482

BreakingBad ( member #75779) posted at 2:26 AM on Monday, October 4th, 2021

This topic finally pushed my butt off the fence about posting about where I'm actually at right now in R.

If you are thinking that your WS got off too easy, your WS may not be embracing the work they need to do: their work to restore trust and their work on themselves to be come a much better (empathetic, NOT self-centered) partner.

As much as (sadly) you do have to do your own healing, you should not be out working them. If you are: huge red flag. (Took me a while to see this in my own situation.)

I just really want to get to this point that is the new "normal" for me


First, that remote in the movie Click? Yep, so tempting for a long time to just rewind time or fast forward...but I have let go of that. (Although, it took months...maybe over a year to let go of that kind of occasional thinking.)

Why I do not want a redo/rewind now? The betrayals made ME own how self-centered much of his part in the relationship was...for a long time, even before the betrayals--how I carried way too much in the relationship and family...and he was apparently cool with that. So, no surprise that--in a time of longterm stress and personal crisis for him--he picked himself yet again! My "aha" is becoming his "aha," though his is slower in coming because it's hard for him to see patterns of behavior that he's ignored or justified for so long. These behaviors are deeply ingrained.

I am now glad that I see the past in it's totality and detail.

I don't want a marriage where my SO isn't a true partner in shouldering the burdens of life--whether day to day logistics or big life crisis. I tend to dive in, roll up my sleeves and work. I want a partner who wants to roll up their sleeves and jump into the work with me and who isn't okay to watch me do too much.

...he admitted the whole affair he knew even in the moment it wasn’t anything serious or real. But all fake and fantasy, yet my thoughts are…you destroyed our marriage for fake.

I hear that. Loud and clear. That's part of the self-centeredness of it all. Because the affair wasn't about you. It was about him. His needs being met. He worked hard to not think about or deny the impact on others. Self-centered.

So, like other posters, I will say that if your WS wants authentic R, they have a mountain of work to do on themselves.

My fWH is there now. We are a year and a half into an attempt at R...and I finally had to 180 about 6 weeks ago. I had to create distance to see if he would actually do the work on himself and also take time to focus on myself (my healing & happiness).

[Clarification, my fWH had done quite a bit of work rebuilding trust...but wasn't doing the work to change long-standing habits/thinking that were really his "why"--so not a safe partner in the long run.]

It's a soft 180 for now. We live in the same house and even share a bed, but live like co-parenting roommates...without benefits.

Right now, it's the marriage I never wanted. So, I've let go of the outcome.

Right now, it is logistically convenient to keep the roommate situation. But I would be okay with D. I will survive and thrive. I won't live like roommates forever, but I've detached enough for now to tolerate it. My patience will run out at some point, if I don't see more work and real change on his part.

Did my WS get away with it? Nah.

I've been hurt, damn straight. But I'm strong and still way less broken than he is.

One of the reasons for my patience with his slow process? I do genuinely love him. I've known him since I was 17 (I'm now 54) and I will always love him on some level. After more than 30 years, I'd like him to heal and grow as a person for HIS sake--whether our marriage survives this or not.

I wish you the best in your journey!

WH had online affairs
Married 30 yrs now
2 kids, both in HS
Dday#4=11/25/20...1st A with cOW was actually 2 1/2 years
BW & WH in IC & MC. Working toward R, but day by day

posts: 77   ·   registered: Oct. 31st, 2020
id 8691492

Hippo16 ( member #52440) posted at 2:48 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

reading here as house is still quiet - only one up other than 4 cats


In other words, much as I might feel justified in beating my WS over the head with his betrayal, I'm going to need to let that go at some point in order to restore the kind of "equality" and balance I want for continuing marriage. I'm looking to be WS's partner, not his Mom/jailer

and also accept that she doesn't have much of the personality attribute called empathy

Not Just Friends

posts: 567   ·   registered: Mar. 26th, 2016   ·   location: OBX
id 8700130

Happenedtome2 ( member #68906) posted at 3:12 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

Moments like these are where I am bitter about making a choice to stay, sometimes I wish I would've just walked out the day it happened and left him to his mess of a life

To this day, I still feel this. I'm 3 years out from DDay. I almost walked away about a month ago. Dropped D on WW and was ready to call it quits. The option is still on the table, and I beat myself up over which way to go.

You're not alone. Not by a longshot.

BH DDay August 2018 :

posts: 480   ·   registered: Nov. 23rd, 2018
id 8700137

lostindenial ( new member #79420) posted at 3:17 PM on Thursday, November 25th, 2021

Avnp, thank you for starting this topic. We all debate and wonder about the unfairness of it. The deep scar, the permanent murder of innocence and trust can never be reverted so no one in the world can say that WD ever pay their dues to what they have done. I have recently put some distance between ws and me to clear my head and agree with eyes advice.
Looking at my ws, here are my observations
1) is he sorry that he got caught or sorry that it happened? Do I have 100% confidence that it is for real?
2)am I playing sunk cost fallacy game?
3) there were two people in the same marriage.?one cheated while another was never given respect of an open conversation or ultimatum. Infact, the TTing, subvert blameshifting, reverse victimization and lying reinforced his self preservation where we all ranked way behind his needs.
4) what work he is doing /what actions do I see that will guarantee me that he wont do it again. On this one, I had a debate with myself. Of course life is about taking a risk but if someone pees in the pool in front of you, will you swim in it? Knowingly exposing yourself to someone who has shown poor character and moral values, why would you tie your romantic, familial and financial future with such a man.
Reality is they did not love us when they did it. You will always know it and if you are anything like me, lying to yourself will crush you. So my advice is run if you have the opportunity and never look back. Don’t know about future happiness but safety i 100% guaranty.
Take the time to he alone and refine your picker. You are better off investing in you.

posts: 23   ·   registered: Sep. 20th, 2021   ·   location: FL
id 8700138

Omnipicus ( new member #79316) posted at 5:38 AM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

I think wayward spouses have it harder long term than betrayed spouses. See for us that are betrayed it will eventually go away. It wasn’t our fault. It will never be our fault.

But waywards don’t get that luxury. It’s a stain. A permanent mark on their soul that they will always have forever.

They have to live with the choice they made. They have to see what it’s like to make someone truly suffer.

I honestly can’t imagine making my spouse feel that way. Just thinking about it makes me sick

posts: 12   ·   registered: Aug. 23rd, 2021
id 8700229

Seeking2Forgive ( member #78819) posted at 9:16 AM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

I think wayward spouses have it harder long term than betrayed spouses. See for us that are betrayed it will eventually go away. It wasn’t our fault. It will never be our fault.

I wish that were true for me. Obviously the A was not my fault, but knowing that doesn't make it go away. There was real loss that I mourn to this day. I reveled in my romantic notion of our love. I loved my certainty of her undying love for me and mine for her. We were an epic love story. Nothing could ever come between us. "Always" and "forever" were real things. Yes, those ideas were naive. But I loved feeling that way and I could have felt that way until the day I die if she had just stuck to the words she said on our wedding day.

My FWW was active here for years after our R and responded to threads on this same topic many times. She would point out that a truly remorseful FWS doesn't "get away with it" because they have to feel deep sadness and remorse for how they hurt their BS for the rest of their lives. I believe her as much I can believe anything since Dday. But the fact that she didn't get away scot-free doesn't mean that she faced consequences proportionate to the harm she did with her actions.

That's the gift a BS gives to a WS in R - acceptance of the fact that the scales can never be balanced. There will always be some injustice there. I've accepted that because in spite of all the terrible harm she did when she was at her worst, I still deeply love the person she is when she's at her best.

Me: 59, BS
Her: 58, FWS
Dday: 11/15/03
Married 37 yrs

posts: 119   ·   registered: May. 18th, 2021
id 8700244

ISurvivedSoFar ( member #56915) posted at 11:48 AM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

It bothered me so much that my WS did something so egregious and seemingly his life didn't change.

I don't know about making things equal - I don't think that is possible. I can say that he suffered immensely having to live with himself as an adulterer and it is not going away. Now that he has done the work and is becoming the person he wants to be he also cannot erase that moniker nor the underlying precepts that are beyond unattractive. He doesn't get a do over.

We don't either. We too get to choose how we want to live. Yes we are tainted and scarred. That is not trivial nor can it be washed away. But I'd so rather live with the scar than with the horror of knowing I inflicted so much pain to the one I love.

I hope in time this comes to you Avnp. It's okay to be frustrated about the unfairness. It is unfair but maybe in a different way than we first imagine.

DDay Nov '16
Me: BS, a.k.a. MommaDom, Him: WS
2 DD's: one adult, one teen,1 DS: adult
Surviving means we promise ourselves we will get to the point where we can receive love and give love again.

posts: 2647   ·   registered: Jan. 15th, 2017
id 8700279

Omnipicus ( new member #79316) posted at 5:04 PM on Friday, November 26th, 2021

Yes it’s true the balance will never be there. But repentance and genuine remorse is so important. I asked my WW about this and she said the look on my face on DDay is something she’ll never forget. It haunts her.

But both of us have to let it go at some point. That could be years away for me since this just happened recently but my counselor talked to me about this

At a certain point we have to forgive and start a new better life moving past this or just divorce them.

Funny story…the AP said his wife cheated on him 7 years ago and he cheated with my wife bc he wasn’t over it. In no way do I ever want to be him. If I am staying with my wife and want to hurt her by cheating 7 years after this? Well then what’s the point?

That’s the hard part in my opinion. I have to be able to let go at some point if true R is going to happen

[This message edited by Omnipicus at 5:08 PM, Friday, November 26th]

posts: 12   ·   registered: Aug. 23rd, 2021
id 8700380

Notaboringwife ( member #74302) posted at 11:48 PM on Saturday, November 27th, 2021

I'd like to add that I believe that I, the former betrayed spouse, reminds my husband of his "infidelity shit."

We are in R, two years +. This year is by far the most calm, and peaceful yet.

But I am the one who without saying anything, is the constant reminder of what a shithead he once was. Just by being me: feeling that I survived and will keep working towards a better me. Not with bitterness, nor with anger, or rage anymore. I am freeing myself from his past lies and deceptions.

Did he get off easily....nope.. He doesn't even have to look in the mirror. laugh He looks at me and keeps trying for he knows and he remembers. Shame. It's his. Not mine.

It's your road & yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but no one can walk it for you. Though nobody can go back and make a new beginning... you can start over and make a new ending.

posts: 247   ·   registered: Apr. 24th, 2020
id 8700542

Repossessed ( member #79544) posted at 12:27 AM on Sunday, November 28th, 2021

when you’re being gaslighted and manipulated and lied to-

This really struck a chord with me. I'm in the middle of re-reading Not Just Friends and Shirley Glass poses this observation, "If you are the marital partner of someone who has been having an affair, you have to be able to figure out whether the lying is an idiosyncratic consequence of this particular situation or an embedded trait that is a matter of character and personality."

So damn important this is. On the basis of this observation alone, I can imagine that even one of questionable character never cheats again because the marriage is that important to them. But what about their MO dealing with everything else in the marriage? Even if you are assured somehow that they never actually cheat again, is one willing to deal with the ancillary headaches caused by a shitty MO owing to an established sub-par character?

My wife couldn't change her MO. And post cheating, I couldn't deal with an MO that I was now recognizing with new clarity.

Here to keep myself mindful that I don't always see what actually is. I certainly didn't when I married her.

posts: 57   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2021   ·   location: Chicagoland
id 8700548

Linus ( new member #79614) posted at 2:23 AM on Monday, November 29th, 2021

It would be comforting for me to believe my XWW felt or feels consequences or pain. I think because we seem to read mainly stories on this site from former wayward, remorseful wayward, we might forget that they are not representative of all cheaters.

I know in my case, and in the cases of several betrayed folks I know, the cheater feels no pain or remorse, at least none that can be discerned.

My XWW, essentially, skated. Our kids suffered and she did not care. She has never apologized or shown remorse.
I do pity her, as she is truly pathetic. And, many of the people who knew us as a couple, including my in-laws, have lost respect for her. My kids surely have.

But,do I think she loses an sleep over this? No, she is a pure sociopath.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Nov. 21st, 2021   ·   location: Connecticut
id 8700614
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