I hear what you are telling us. And I understand it. Her healing is a process. You as her partner want to play a part In that process. I agree with that if your desire is to R.
Something I wrote 3 days ago was that it appears to me that your rebuilding process is all "Her" centered.
So I want you to know i heard you and understand the reasons you gave as to why. And I also comprehend them. But what it doesn’t change is that any good reconciliation worth it’s salt has to focus on the healing of the betrayed spouse. And right now, for whatever reasons, from what I hear you telling us, she can’t focus on your pain and your healing. Or won’t. Or just isn’t. Because you both think she needs to focus on herself.
I hear nothing about her helping you through the pain of what you have experienced. It may be because of what you and the Drs believe to be her disease or disorder, but regardless she is not helping you heal. Not to the extent she needs to.
You cannot do that alone. She hurt you terribly. But all I’m hearing is how she’s affected and reacts to that fact. And what I’m trying to tell you, and I and others here have been trying to tell you, is that while she needs to work on her illness (with your support), you both need to focus on YOUR PAIN even more.
It’s as if her BPD was telling her that you didn’t care about her (as you have told us) and that because of it she pointed a gun at you and shot a bullet thru your chest. And now, instead of focusing on saving your life and healing your wound, you are both saying it’s more important on focusing on why she pointed the gun at you at all than getting you in surgery to save your life.
And even though it’s been 9 years, the injury, the pain was never properly addressed as the full story was never known.
And the way you write, and for the short period of time her post was available, the way she writes, it makes it sound like you both think your issues are secondary to hers. That she, and even you, focus more on what’s wrong with her, than what was inflicted on you.
And quite honestly, in my absolutely untrained opinion, fixing or learning to live with BPD, to me, should absolutely include finding and learning empathy. If BPD is more severe than narcissism, then narcissistic tendencies should be addressed. As from the way you both write, they are definitely there.
She greatly hurt you. That’s a fact no matter what the reason. And if you are going to have a chance to truly rebuild, she is going to have to figure out how to make you the center of her attention and not herself. And it’s not by moving to a remote site and hiding from her tendencies. It’s by doing it. It’s by changing and actually practicing.
And what I mean by that is by showing you thru actions that you are the greatest love of her life. And proving that she knows you are the best man she has ever known. And that she desires you more than any man she has ever met.
We can discuss more how she does that, but it starts by initiating. Not just sex, but romance. Not just conversation but real discussions about your pain, without you asking or planning for them. By doing things for you that truly show that you are the only one in your heart.
Because BetrayedMan, reading your very first post, the part that stuck me the worst of all the things you wrote about your awful affairs, and there were some terrible things she did with these men, and then let you live for a decade not knowing the truth about them, but the absolute thing that slayed me the most was this:
She fell in love with him and when she found out he was moving to Texas to be with his kids, they discussed her going with him. She realized I would fight her for custody and decided she couldn't go with him. She said after he left, she never had another affair because it was heartbreaking.
She not only acted out for acceptance and being desired by others (which her illness caused her to feel that need), but she actually loved him. And only stayed for the kids.
And the last sentence actually makes my heart drop into my stomach. She stopped having affairs, not because she felt awful about betraying the man she vowed to love honor cherish and protect. No, she stopped because when the affairs ended, HER heart would get broken. It was because how it affected her. Not you. Her.
That to me is the utmost in narcissistic thinking and feeling.
And that’s why it concerns me so much that so much of your energy as a couple is going into learning to live with her illness and from what I read from you both, so little Into addressing the pain from the injury her betrayals caused you.
She not only has to fix that awful issue, but she has to become the wife you always deserved. And it can’t wait for years for her to finis therapy. It has to happen at the same time.
Honestly I urge you both to have a true discussion on this. Really talk about what it will take for you to heal. Her working hard to get a handle on her issues is only a part of it. It’s a big part of it, but if I had to put a number on it it’s no more than 25% of what it will take for you to get thru the pain you feel. And of course, as any BS knows, much of that effort has to come from within you as well.
But the part I truly don’t see here, the part I see missing is a shift in your marriage that has to take place. The focus of the relationship. It’s too much focused on her. She’s still the center of attention. It needs to become more balanced. And honestly for the next few decades it should now lean towards you and your needs. For too long it’s been pointed to hers.
To me, thats what addressing her narcissistic tendencies and BPD mental issues should entail. Gaining her strength thru therapy, but individual and MC should include her ability to really see what she did to you, The destruction her choices created and the pain left in its wake.
And as a result she needs to put what she learns into practice, not just to come to you when she feels issues to get on top of them, but to actually be an empathetic wife and really help you heal.
You guys need to figure out what it means for her to put as much energy into loving you as she did in lusting for others and conniving to cheat. How are you going to ever feel like she’ll do anything to keep you in her life and feeling safe. Working on her issues is only part of that recipe.
I fully expect you to deflect what I say. You’ll Give me a litany of things she has done, but I don’t need that. When I hear the change in what you guys say here, and the primary focus turns from her own issues to your healing and her doing things that prove to you she’s not still pining away for dangerous sex or a young soccer coach’s body or especially a coworker whom she professed love, and she’s proactively every day week month and year doing something for you and not just remaining focused inside herself, then I’ll know you guys have a chance.
That’s what I hope you guys will intensely discuss. Really take the next few weeks and focus on. I hope you do.
[This message edited by Stevesn at 7:03 PM, Friday, December 31st]