30yearsanddestroyed (original poster new member #79757) posted at 4:27 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
I found out a little less than a month ago that my WH has been cheating on me for over a year. I'm a teacher and have a lot of difficulty in my job. During my planning time, I can't focus, all I can do is research stuff about his affair, healing from affairs, etc. I'm getting behind in my work. I'm barely eating or sleeping. How do others cope with this? What has helped you with functioning in your daily life?
InRetrospect ( member #18641) posted at 4:37 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
I was fortunate in having some slack time in the otherwise busy days at my job, so my lack of productivity was not really significant to anyone. But I was pretty severely impacted emotionally, of course, and most thankful that I was not required to be 100% there at the time. I could take time off, go home early, etc., and that helped.
I also got on anti-depressants as soon as I could, and that definitely took the edge off so that I could function better.
My heart goes out to you.
BentandBroken ( member #72519) posted at 4:42 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
I'm so sorry you're going through this and yes, the lack of focus will be challenging for a while.
In the immediate aftermath of D-Day, I had to take a leave of absence until the anti depressants leveled me out. Is that a possibility for you? Your doctor can probably write you a medical recommendation. Mine did.
You're dealing with major trauma. Please take care of yourself. Keep posting here. There's a lot of support on this forum.
[This message edited by BentandBroken at 4:44 PM, Thursday, January 13th]
20+ year relationship; Never officially married
Dday November 2019
4 wonderful grown children
WH multiple APs, currently involved with married COW
Kicked him out on Dday and that was that
Riverz ( member #79713) posted at 4:55 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
Hi 30 Years…I’m so very sorry you’re going through this hell.
I am currently in the same boat…my D-day was Dec 18.
I’m also a teacher and I knew I couldn’t go back to work…teaching requires you to be "on" all the time…and when you’re living through the trauma of betrayal, it’s impossible to stay composed all day. I’m having such difficulty regulating my emotions and depression…I’m just crying and sad all the time. I’m devastated.
My doctor wrote me a note and I’m off on mental health leave for as long as I need it.
You need time to just grieve the profound loss…and there is so much loss when a betrayal is chosen by your partner. It’s completely devastating to your life in every way.
Please know you’re not alone…sending you lots of strength and (((((hugs)))))
gmc94 ( Guide #62810) posted at 5:16 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
My dday (just realized it was four years ago TODAY ) hit as I was in the midst of a huge work project. There were times I'd have to excuse myself from meetings so I could cry in my office (full fetal position, snot everywhere, screaming into a pillow type crying).
I was consumed and obsessed.
Time did help - but that's not too helpful when in the middle of the crisis.
If I had to do it all over again, I wish I'd been better able to force myself to exercise and to hydrate and get some protein in me. IOW, to do what I could to get my BODY working, even tho my mind was really off course.
I wish I'd have started with the mindfulness/ guided meditations right away (I use a free app called Insight Timer - there are others, and there are YouTube videos, etc). In the midst of the trauma response, it's not easy to let our minds wander, but it does get better the more you do it. Those guided mediations were a real Godsend once I started to do them - got to the point where I only needed to hear the intro music that I'd be calm/asleep. Find something that works for you.
I wish I'd heard of/read Rick Hansen's "Resilient" right away and began practicing his H.E.A.L. steps (nothing to do with infidelity). It's about incorporating joy into our daily lives and working to rewire neural pathways - it was a game changer for me, but I didn't even know about it until 6 months in. I highly rec audiobook - I got from library - so you don't have to open eyes/read when in the middle of one of his exercises.
Exercise really is one of the (or the) best way to help get our executive brains back on track and I really wish I'd been able to come up with some brain tricks to get me doing it (rather than dropping everything in my life other than infidelity). So if you are able to find ways to get in some exercise, you are already on a path to healing.
There's a ton of other things I'd do differently... but none of us have the LUXURY of going back in time - right?
I think if I could focus on one thing, it would be focusing on the trauma and healing trauma. Not the infidelity. Not all the questions. Not the obsessive ruminating. Not the fear, or the devastation, or all the "what ifs" that roam in our mind. And definitely not who is my WH and who is the person that's been screwing MY husband. Basically pivoting from all the "him" stuff, the "A" stuff, and the "M" stuff to ME stuff. And I know that it is A LOT easier said than done. I know that our trauma / lizard brains kind of take over & work at their own pace. We just got walloped by someone we let into our inner emotional & physical sanctum.... takes awhile for a brain to figure that out. I was so full of desperation in the midst of those early weeks & months, if someone had told me I'd feel better if I covered my naked body in baking soda and hung upside down for 20 minutes while singing the Star Spangled Banner ... I'd be at Costco w/in the hour buying the baking soda and gravity boots.
The focus piece is just... hard. All we really CAN do is put one foot in front of the other and try what we can. I did get some antidepressants, but they actually made me MORE suicidal, so keep a good watch on that front - you may need to switch things up.
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
CruiseControl ( new member #79784) posted at 5:18 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
I’m sorry you’re going through this... I was lucky due to flexibility at work that I could work from home which helped... And then from there, the covid lock downs started, so that also helped... We’ll, helped in the sense that I didn’t need to be around people... I was a mess for a few months... Couldn’t eat or sleep either... I slowly started to get myself together by working out, listening to my old hair band music and to a certain extent cherishing my time alone where I didn’t have any obligations to anyone... That said, I’m over 2 years post, and I’m still struggling with it... As a matter of fact, it’s getting worse... I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be a bummer, but that’s the reality for me... I can’t speak for anyone else, but that’s what it is for me... my story is very long winded... I’ve written a good chunk of it on my profile page so won’t re-hash here... That said, I’m sorry that you’re going through this... It’s the hardest thing I’ve experienced in my life... If anything, I’d say you need time to focus on yourself... If you don’t have the flexibility at work to do so, I would suggest a leave of absence... I wouldn’t necessarily go for medication so soon... start with time... allow yourself to cry... allow yourself time to be with yourself... To think of what you want for you... Not for your family, kids, in laws or your spouse... Once you know what you think is best for you is when you start thinking about how to get to that place...
I wish you well...
leafields ( member #63517) posted at 5:22 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
To add on to Ellie's post, meditation helped me work on my concentration. Start small, and work up. I use Headspace, and it's been amazing. At first, I could only do about 3 minutes of the breathing exercises, but then I was able to work up to longer time periods.
For sleep, there's a guided meditation that I use on YouTube to get me to sleep, and I have one of the night music podcasts to help keep me asleep.
If you're having problems, go see your doctor and get medications to help you through right now. I was a mess right after DDay, and had nightmares for a long time.
Take care of you right now.
Married 34 years, 3 DS
DDay #1: March 26, 2018, DDay #2 8/26/2019
Filed for D: 11/16/2020
D Final: 2/25/2021
This0is0Fine ( member #72277) posted at 7:21 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
Fight compartmentalization with compartmentalization. Don't let the affair/personal life into your workday. Allow it to be an oasis of productivity where you are capable and in control.
Maybe not a healthy response but it had some practical application for me...
Love is not a measure of capacity for pain you are willing to endure for your partner.
trustedg ( member #44465) posted at 7:36 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
I tried, sometimes unsuccessfully, to set aside times to think about the A. If I started to think about it outside those times I told myself to Stop! Stop thinking about it and focus on something else, you can think about the A when it is time.
My IC, individual counselor, suggested it, she was a great help.
Me BWHim WH DDay 12/2012Married a long time, in R
gulty ( new member #79575) posted at 8:11 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
Having been just over a month from DDay, I have faced similar struggle as yours.
I would say, get started reading "Resilient". I finished only 2 chapters so far and they have been very useful. Meditation is also very useful during the day.
Watching an episode of Seinfeld is the last thing I do before I go to bed. I have a yoga practice. So I am able to put myself to sleep at night by going into the corpse pose first. Some nights however, I wake up in the middle of the night and then I cannot get back to sleep.
Notaboringwife ( member #74302) posted at 8:54 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
What helped me cope most during my daily life was separating from my husband on D-day. We had a 40 year marriage that went flying out the door...
I asked him to leave me and our home. He did that and ran off to live with his AP. His affair was in full swing, going on for 12 months. So it was no fling.
Once he was gone , out of sight, I immersed myself into activities...I lawyered up, both family and corporate lawyers. We owned a business together. I joined a woman's support group for separated, or divorcing women due to infidelity. I did IC. I raged, I cried, I curled up in a ball and took walks outside. I spoke with good friends and good family members.
I understand that separating may not be something you want to do and I am in no way suggesting this.
But immersing myself into activities, working with the Corporate lawyer to gather facts, proofs, just keeping busy helped me balance out my emotions and maintain my sanity and focus.. The IC was specifically to help me get a grip on my feelings and help me focus on my life, not his. His infidelity and why he did this or that was secondary to me managing my feelings...I cared about my feelings, my loss of security, my loss of respect, my loss of love, my loss of trust, the disappointment I felt, the lies I lived with etc. It was all about me. Not him.
The affair research started slowly and culminated this year, three years into reconciliation.
Gently and with much compassion for your feelings, I would suggest finding a way to help you manage your feelings and finding your focus as a priority. Maybe IC, maybe great friends, maybe family members, or a church...whatever would work for you. Maybe even a leave from work as other members have suggested.
I am a retired teacher of sorts...I was a human resource trainer...dealt with adults. I can't begin to imagine planning lessons in that state of mind. My heart goes out to you.
Forgiveness sometimes just means accepting that it happened and refusing to let it guide your choices.
Nanatwo ( member #45274) posted at 9:43 PM on Thursday, January 13th, 2022
Dday was a Sunday evening - he informed me he had met the love of his life and walked out. I spent that night knowing my husband of 30 years was fucking another woman. We all know the feelings when infidelity is exposed - the shock, devastation, pain - it just goes on and on.
Monday morning I had a meeting to facilitate with some medical students - some who had driven in from out of town - and who scheduled time away from their studies to attend the meeting. I couldn't call in - I was the only one who knew the agenda. Somehow - after a sleepless night spent crying hysterically I managed to get to the meeting and hold myself together long enough to conduct the meeting - but I was able to leave shortly after the meeting.
Looking back, I see this as a blessing. It took all the strength I had - but for a couple of hours it forced me to focus on something besides my pain and devastation. I found work to be a much needed distraction - I work at a large medical clinic and the days are very hectic. I told my boss what had happened and she was very good about letting me slip away into the bathroom when I felt myself spiraling - and believe me that happened quiet a number of times a day the first few weeks.
Work did help, but what really helped was just giving into the pain at first and not fighting it. I would watch some mindless comedy and would find myself distracted for a minute - that eventual led to being distracted for longer and longer periods of time until I felt I was controlling the pain instead it controlling me.
I hardly slept at all that first week - and with still trying to work I was becoming an exhausted wreck. I am not a pill taker - but my sister insisted I call my doctor before I had a mental break down. He prescribed me sleeping medicine and a mild sedative. I only took the sedative for a short time - but the sleeping medicine helped me get at least a few hours sleep so I was able to function.
Talk to your doctor - he can prescribe you sleep medication and maybe an anti-depressant if you feel that is necessary. I know how hard eating is - I lost a great deal of weight on the My husband had an Affair diet. Try sipping on a nutritious drink such as Ensure or Carnation Instant Break.
You are so new to this and I know you are feeling overwhelmed. This is a wonderful site to come to to just release your feelings and know that there are people out there who will give you some wonderful, helpful advice.
You will get through this - we are here for you.
Time heals what reason cannot. Seneca
First the truth. Then, maybe, reconciliation. Louise Penny
Grieving ( member #79540) posted at 1:28 AM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
I’m so sorry. I’ve had a range of jobs in my life, and teaching requires you to be "on" like no other profession. I know of four teachers in my small district who have taken mental health leaves of absence over the last two years just from the stress of teaching, not because of any other reason. The pandemic has made an already difficult job a nightmare of stress for many/most teachers. Our healthcare pathways teacher left teaching to go back to the ER and work crazy shifts with Covid patients. She said it was easier than teaching.
I found out about my husband’s affair in July 2020, and we had an unrelated, very traumatic loss in the same month. I started school back to school in August, and I was a basket case. Fortunately we were virtual for the first month, which was stressful, but allowed me the space to-literally-curl up in a fetal position on the floor between Google meets and sob. My heart goes out to you so much.
Give yourself grace. A bunch of my students are quarantined right now, so it’s like having two jobs keeping up with in-person students and the one’s learning virtually at home. At the same time, I’m having some traumatic flashbacks and fears that are wreaking emotional havoc. Today I ended up having my students do an ungraded creative project related to MLK day on Monday. The drawing and coloring ended up being therapeutic for me and everybody. Plan the simplest, most pleasant things possible, and block out all the background noise telling you to do otherwise. Take it a day at a time. Cut out anything you can possibly cut out. Compartmentalize with a vengeance. Be kind to yourself. Let yourself cry. I don’t really have any answers, but I understand 100% where you are, and I’m so, so sorry. No one should have to go through this. Hang in there. It gets better and you get stronger, but those first days of raw pain are just so hard.
30yearsanddestroyed (original poster new member #79757) posted at 3:10 AM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
Sorry, I don't understand yet the tech of these boards, so I don't know how to quote. Sorry you are going through something similar, and it sounds like a similar timeline and actions by our WHs. I have considered asking for a leave of absence and that may be the route I go. I'm going to contact my IC. My WH and I work at the same school.
30yearsanddestroyed (original poster new member #79757) posted at 3:28 AM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
Thank you all for the tips and recommendations. I will be getting "Resilient" on audible. I have Calm and other apps to help sleep, but I'm not using them because I'm staying awake either trying to catch up on work or reading about all of this shit I now am dealing with. Our MC will become my IC, and in our last session, he focused heavily on my care and well-being. His main concern was my lack of sleep. We will start meeting 1:1 this week.
My WHs activities heated up after he had a bad accident last year and was off work for 3 months. He was doing things during the day after our ayi left and before I got home from work. (We are living in China, an ayi is a housekeeper/cook and most expats in China employ an ayi.) He has a follow-up surgery tomorrow and will be off work for 2 weeks. I am freaking out and completely triggered about this.
I'm going to contact my IC today to see what he suggests and also follow up with my doctor. I am already on anti-depressants, but I don't know how well they are working.
Thanks again. I'm still just overwhelmed. Oh, and writing this from work during a planning time. 🤦🏼♀️
Riverz ( member #79713) posted at 4:40 AM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
30years...again, I’m so sorry you’re having to face this crisis and trauma in your life. You do NOT deserve this!
Your WH works at the same school?? Omg...please ask about mental health/stress leave...That sounds like an extra stressful situation.
For myself, I know I can’t do my job right now...I can’t do anything else except work through this grieving and trauma...I’m barely functional. I know some people can find an extra reserve of strength and can use work as a distraction, but that’s not my situation.
It sounds like you are doing the best you can in a very shitty situation. I truly hope you can work through this trauma, heal from it, and figure out what you want to do moving forward.
Sending you lots of (((((hugs)))))
Seeking2Forgive ( member #78819) posted at 6:31 AM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
It was really tough. I had lost my job just prior to my W's A and got a new job as an IT contractor just five or six months before Dday. So I was the new guy and could not really afford to take a walk to get away and cry when things became overwhelming. But I had to.
I tried to emerge myself in the work but now and then something would trigger and I'd start weeping. It started to impact my work enough that I had to talk with my supervisor and let them know that we were having "marriage problems." When the contract ran out they declined to hire me full time and I sometimes wonder if that's because of that period of drama.
It was actually easier at first because my W was still fully in the fog and when we talked during the day it was never all that deep. Later, as she started deciding that she wanted R, the conversations got much harder. I was late for a few meetings while I tried to get myself together.
My advice is to take some time if you have it. Also utilize any counseling services that are available through work. You don't have to tell them it's a case of infidelity, but it's good that they know that you're working through problems. Hopefully they'll be understanding of any work impact.
Take care of yourself. Make a point to eat, drink, and sleep. Set a schedule and stick to it.
The obsessive search for answers is completely normal. He has shattered your reality and you're trying to sift through the pieces to put it back together. I'm very sorry he's done this to you.
I wish you the best.
Me: 60, BS
Her: 59, FWS
Married 37 yrs
oldmewasmurdered ( member #79473) posted at 6:47 AM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
Sorry you're here. I was in your shoes about 4 months ago. At the time I was starting a new job and moved to a new place so had lots of stress. I found forcing myself to take care of my body really helped with my mental state. Forcing myself to eat food despite not wanting to eat for days. Forcing myself to do some workout or physical activity so that I don't ruminate all day. Forcing myself to sleep earlier because I knew I would wake up in the middle of the night and have trouble going back to sleep. Regarding sleep medications may help as well depending on what exactly about sleep you're having troubles with. If you have trouble falling asleep then melatonin or even a doctor prescribed sleeping aid can work wonders. If you're like me and wake up in the middle of the night and can't go back to bed then I find meditation helps to calm the mind to stop all the night time mind movies. Regarding work I find having the mentality of when I'm at work I'm here to WORK help me to not focus on my pain after D-day. Work was distraction for me from my pain. However we're all different and if you find you need some time off I'm sure any sane doctor will understand. Sending strength and hugggss!
Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 1:34 PM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
For all posters, understand there is a biological reason you don’t feel like eating. Our "lizard" brains don’t recognize the difference between being chased by a bear or being cheated on. It only recognizes that we are in eminent danger. That part of our brain makes us throw up, urinate, defecate, and feel like running away. It is trying to unload as much excess weight as possible. It gets us ready to run. This trauma then becomes chronic because it was not a bear. It was a long term attack on our whole being. You can recover if you outran the bear. It is a story to tell your friends. This is entirely different because we need food and water but the length of time this lasts is still under the control of that lizard brain, and it wants us to run. It recognizes that the danger is still there. You have to make yourself eat, sleep, move. It take a huge effort but it means you take back control.
When someone walks away let them go
emergent8 ( member #58189) posted at 5:50 PM on Friday, January 14th, 2022
I'm sorry you're hurting. I remember how all-consuming my affair thoughts. I thought I was going to get fired for a while because my productivity at work took a serious nose-dive. All I could think about was the A.
If you're worried about the same, it might be worth having a conversation with a superior to let them know what you're going through in case they have noticed your (mental) distance. You'd be surprised at how many people have experienced something similar and may have some empathy. The flip is that they might start monitoring you more closely so you will need to weigh that risk out. You are in the best position to know whether your employer is likely to be empathetic or not.
Me: BS, Him: WS. Mid-late 30s.
Together 15 years, married 6 (11 m at D-Day).
D-Day: Feb 2017 (8 m PA with married COW).
5 years (and two toddlers) into R. Happy.