Dbug (original poster new member #79446) posted at 5:07 PM on Friday, October 1st, 2021
It's been a long time since I've posted.
I'll give a brief recap of my journey.
My husband had a 2 year affair with my brother's wife. I found out Nov. 2009. They reconciled and we did as well.
Lots of changes were made, therapy had, etc. etc. My husband is a different man now. He has grown tremendously as a human. He did everything I've asked of him through the years. Today, we have a much deeper relationship.
Unfortunately, I have a history of depression and anxiety issues. The fallout from his affair, over the years, has been extremely difficult.....to say the least. I'm a completely different person and not in the ways I'd hoped for.
Post dday I have dealt with so many different issues mentally and physically. I feel like it would take me days to write it all out.
Ultimately a lot of what I've experienced cannot be blamed on him and I accept this. There has been loss, major life changes and general everyday stress stuff. What I find upsetting is that I'm just not happy and I haven't been for a very long time.
(I do plan on finding a counselor to talk to again)
This place in our lives has been interesting (middle aged, almost empty nesters) and I wrestle with whether or not I want to be with my husband anymore. I fantasize about what it would be like to have own place. We are not very romantic and my attraction towards him comes and goes. When it goes I feel so numb but I love him deeply as a person at the same time. It's very strange.
I think some of the reason for this has a lot to do with how we live. He makes a lot of the decisions as the primary breadwinner. I hate where we live and have had a multitude of talks in regards to our future. At the end of the day we do what he thinks is best and I'm just so resentful.
I left a very stressful job last year that was very big part of my life and ever since I feel sort of empty. I'm currently working part time so I'm trying to keep busy but it is definitely not where I thought I'd be work wise.
I think a lot about what my life would look like if I had left when I found out.
I think about what it would be like to be in love again and feel passion. I'm tired of always being on his path.
If I'm being honest...I feel foggy even though I have no affair partner.
I just didn't expect to feel this way so far into reconciliation.
Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
13YearsR ( member #58259) posted at 6:24 PM on Friday, October 1st, 2021
I hate where we live and have had a multitude of talks in regards to our future. At the end of the day we do what he thinks is best and I'm just so resentful.
I get you. For 18 years, I lived in a house that my husband picked and that I hated. I'm a very sentimental person, but I didn't even do a final walkthrough to say goodbye to the house where my children grew up when it was sold.
I think a lot of middle aged women, myself included, reach a point where we're no longer willing to tolerate someone else running our show or telling us who they think we should be. I'm glad that you plan on seeking some professional help to help you make sense of things. I think you should put that plan into action and make an appointment today.
[This message edited by 13YearsR at 10:23 PM, Friday, October 1st]
The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off. ~ Gloria Steinem
The grass is greener on the other side of the fence because you're not over there messing it up.
DDay 2004. Successful R. 33 years married
nekonamida ( member #42956) posted at 4:56 PM on Saturday, October 2nd, 2021
Dbug, I agree with working through things with an IC. You absolutely should be pursuing what you want to do and no longer putting things aside for your FWH. When push comes to shove, he may join you or he may not.
If I'm being honest...I feel foggy even though I have no affair partner.
I think this is a silly thing to say for a couple of reasons. The fog is based on limerence and "feel good" hormones that are released during cheating/new partner so it doesn't apply to your situation. You're free to want something different without it being shameful. You're free to decide that the status quo isn't cutting it and make a change that's good for you even if it means your spouse will be affected. You're free to put your happiness above your FWH especially because no one else is going to do it for you. You're entitled to living how you want to live and not compromising for someone else. None of that is bad or shameful inherently. It's simply good advice that gets co-opted by cheaters who are running on limerence, hormones, and poor justifications for their bad behavior this the fog is born.
Any feelings of guilt you may have and need to put FWH first even if it makes you unhappy is exactly what needs to be fixed in IC. That will prepare you to forge a happier life for yourself regardless of what FWH does or doesn't do.
Dbug (original poster new member #79446) posted at 5:51 PM on Sunday, October 3rd, 2021
Nekonamida what you wrote put tears in my eyes. I really struggle with feelings of guilt.
Prior to dday I was much better about putting myself first. After dday, through the years, it has become much much more difficult to make decisions. I overthink and question everything. Anxiety issues make this even more difficult. I need to work with a counselor to combat some of these intense hang ups I've developed.
I really do carry a lot of resentment toward my husband. He has become so much better and confident through the years and I feel I've went in the opposite direction.
I'm not trying to say I've made no progress, because I have. I definitely feel I'm a deeper and more emotionally aware person because of the things I've gone through. I have good days and bad days I guess.
nekonamida ( member #42956) posted at 12:41 AM on Monday, October 4th, 2021
You have NOTHING to feel guilty about. You don't owe him a marriage and staying with him, if it makes you unhappy, isn't fair to him either. He deserves a spouse who is happy to be with him too. You both deserve happiness and neither of you will have it if things continue as they are. Things need to change some way some how.
Keep an open mind. Don't marry yourself to any decision just yet until you've examined things with an IC. It's possible you've grown in a different direction than him and separating would be better. It's also possible that all you need is a kick to lay down your boundaries about what kind of life you will need going forward and he will decide that you're more important than living here and working this job. If he refuses to entertain moving for your sake, that is important information too about where you stand with him and how likely your marriage is to continue. It's too early to tell how this will go but the only thing you MUST do is make decision that maximizes YOUR happiness. Not his. Not anyone else's. YOURS.
Fof9303 ( member #70433) posted at 9:24 PM on Thursday, October 7th, 2021
I am sorry that you are feeling this way. I applaud you for making you marriage work through a very very difficult and close situation that includes family members. I know how difficult it was for me and it was no one that I knew. I also think you should try counseling before you go and make any drastic decisions, but in the meantime I would let your husband know about your unhappiness with the way that things are going. You should definitely have a say in everything. I was a stay at home mom and I made sure it was 50/50 on money matters. It is not too late for you to make this declaration either. Let your voice be heard and maybe some things will change for the better. Most women our age go through these mid life problems, whether we have had infidelity crash into our marriage or not.. it is just about finding our way through these trials and moments that really count. Call that counselor and see if it can brighten you up. God Bless.
The1stWife ( member #58832) posted at 12:23 PM on Friday, October 8th, 2021
You cannot force yourself to feel a certain way — especially after the trauma of betrayal.
You owe yourself happiness. It doesn’t matter if he’s now the best H on the planet - the damage is done. And you are not obligated to stay unhappily married.
You can re-evaluate your life at any time and make changes. As a betrayed you just had no reason prior to finding out about the affair b/c you were probably pretty content and happy. But now you look at things differently b/c you were betrayed.
He may not have the same feelings b/c life is still being run on his agenda. However he may NOT be able to do anything to change your feelings but that is the risk you take when you choose to cheat.
It’s called consequences. Something the cheater never considers.
Maybe a separation for you might be a good thing. It’s not hateful or nasty - it’s to think about yiur future and achieve the happiness you deserve. Think about it.
Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.
Luna10 ( member #60888) posted at 1:00 PM on Friday, October 8th, 2021
He makes a lot of the decisions as the primary breadwinner. I hate where we live and have had a multitude of talks in regards to our future. At the end of the day we do what he thinks is best and I'm just so resentful.
I’m sorry you feel so low but I’m glad you are considering your situation with a view of improving it either way.
Based on above you are not part of a team, your marriage isn’t a partnership. I know how that feels because I was in that situation in my marriage before dday also. I thought it is normal. I thought that the main breadwinner has more of a say somehow because they earn more.
Post dday though I identified where that has led us to: my WH had a sense of selfishness and entitlement that led him to ultimately having an affair (because he deserved it, his words) and I enabled him. That’s when I said enough.
Think of it like this: why would a person have the right to dictate every detail of YOUR life just because he earns more? True, if he didn’t earn his salary you couldn’t have afforded some stuff but that wouldn’t have taken your voice away. If you would have earned equally you would have a say right? Because it is your life. Are you of the belief that he bought his right to lead YOUR life?
I’m not saying that marriages aren’t based on some sort of compromise when the spouses disagree, but that shouldn’t come from a position of power. A true partnership is based on negotiation and communication, it has absolutely nothing to do with who earns more.
Looking back I felt the same: I had no right to tell my husband where we should invest our savings (which ironically would have been split in half if we divorced) because he earned 3 times more than me. Post dday I realised that I would have been happier alone with my reduced income (compared to his) but feeling like I can make my own decisions and I’m not just being dragged through life by my spouse. I remember telling him at one point "I feel like a guest in your house, ironically the same house would be equally divided if we divorced". We have pretty much an equal say in ALL our finance matters now (with the usual compromise on both sides if we disagree).
So you have two options: communicating to you WH and explain you’re not willing to live like that anymore, it builds resentment and he hasn’t bought himself the right to overwhelmingly dictate all your life details, or the option of divorcing without trying to improve the status quo. You don’t owe him yet another chance. No matter how much work he did, it still sounds to me that his selfishness and entitlement levels are above what they should be.
I hope the answers here gave you the strength you need to take the right steps forward. Good luck!
BW - 38 at the time of the A
WH - 45
Dday - 27/9/2017
Buster123 ( member #65551) posted at 5:03 AM on Saturday, October 9th, 2021
Sorry to address the proverbial "pink elephant in the room" but let me ask you, how's your relationship with your brother and SIL/AP ? has NC been established ? must be hard with family gatherings/interactions. Is it possible part of your resentment comes from the A and that it has not been properly been addressed ? I don't know your story, did you guys rugsweep ? Was the rest of the family and mutual close friends told about the A ?