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Newest Member: Gtacch

Just Found Out :
My Wife had an Intense, Highly Deceptive Affair

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Jameson1977 ( member #54177) posted at 6:54 PM on Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

I agree with clouds777, talk is cheap and easy, making changes and putting in the effort is the hard work. My WW was the same. Lots of tears, statements about making changes, etc. At the time, I was taking it all in and thought she was making efforts, but when I removed my feelings from it and looked at it objectively, there really wasn’t any effort being made.

I raised this point with my WW a couple of years after dday and when I felt we were at a breaking point. My WW had planned a shower for her BFF. She spent hours and hours planning and running around all over the place to make it a special event for her BFF. That’s great, it is something good friends do for one another. All told, she probably spent 80 + hours on this. I asked her if she felt she had put in 10% of the effort expended on this baby shower to addressing her issues. She thought about it, tried to justify it somehow, but in the end she admitted that she hadn’t put in much effort into "us".

Some months went by and saw absolutely no change in effort. This is when I decided enough was enough. I told her she needed to make real efforts to address her issues with intensive IC or we were done. To her credit, she did and made a lot of progress. Years after that, I asked her why it took an ultimatum from me for her to "work" on herself. She said she didn’t want to really delve into her issues, she was afraid of being judged by her IC. She wanted to bury her head in the sand and pretend everything was okay. Well, it wasn’t and she finally took steps to address her issues.

On the sex front, what you have described resonates with me a lot. My WW didn’t do anything with her AP that we hadn’t done, other than one thing that I have zero interest in. She admitted that she didn’t have any interest in doing this one thing either, but she wanted to please him so she did it enthusiastically. It was a pure power plan from the AP, he wanted to see how far he could push her limits. Makes me very angry even thinking about it.

TMI maybe, but she did do anal with her AP. We had done this through our relationship as well, but as we both got older, it just wasn’t something we did very often, and frankly, wasn’t something I "missed".

After dday and her description of her physical encounter with her AP, I did ask her if anything we did/do sexually made her uncomfortable. She did say that anal is something that she isn’t comfortable with, not because it was something that her and her AP did, but more about her knowing, if we did it, more about that the fact she gave this to another man and knew it would be on my mind if we did.

This made me angry at the time. I felt like this was something these two shared and now, because of her actions, it was something that would be uncomfortable to her and would likely cause me to have mind movies. I went away and thought about it. At the end of the day, I didn’t want to do anything that my WW was uncomfortable with, regardless of the reasons why. So, this is something that we don’t / won’t do in future.

Now, in your situation, I don’t feel you are asking for anything unreasonable at all. What you’re asking for would be considered by most to be fairly typical in a committed relationship.

On the IC front, I feel you should address making the most out of your one hour sessions by agreeing on a couple of topics to discuss openly with the IC being the referee when things start to go off the rails. I know that when I met with my WW’s IC, you can go round and round taking without any real outcome or resolution. My mother worked with many psychiatric professionals and one thing she said to me that rang true was if your IC doesn’t give you both homework to work on in between sessions, you need to find another IC. The "work" is done by and between you two, with IC sessions meant to discuss openly and with the IC digging into the issues you can’t resolve between the two of you.

It really sounds to me like your WW is wanting to make the least amount of effort to address her A, and she needs a wake up call to push her. It’s your choice to make if you want to invest the time it will take to address her shitty behaviour, and it’s up to her to decide if she wants to put in the effort. Talk is cheap and easy, modifying behaviour and making changes in your life are hard.

posts: 760   ·   registered: Jul. 16th, 2016
id 8734722
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Mamabear312 ( member #59811) posted at 7:13 PM on Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

Doc, I've been following along. I'm a BS who had a VERY self-centered WS who completely lacked insight into his own behaviors/actions/triggers. With a heaping side of narcissism. I'm also a therapist (though I work with children and teens because I find them way cooler than adults).

I too am analytical by nature. Cognition first, feelings later. Make it make sense. Poke holes and analyze the words and answers. Questions, more questions... and my favorite-- helping him re-write his narrative to match reality. I was queen of this. 6 months post affair, I could tell him why he did what he did, how he was ACTUALLY feeling at the time, what he REALLY meant when he said XYZ, etc. And you're doing A LOT of that.

You should know-- ultimately, it got me NO WHERE. (except almost divorced with attorney fees)

As I read your thread, all I keep thinking is that you are doing ALL.THE.WORK. And aside from the obvious problems with that given your marriage dynamic, the truly biggest problem is you're stunting any ability she has to do the necessary work herself. If you give her all the "answers" and provide her with all the "realizations," how on earth is she supposed to LEARN to work through that process herself? Changing one's thought process, the way they work through both thoughts and feelings, is very hard work. Your wife has a serious deficit and needs to work on viewing the world differently (aka not blame shifting, negativity, always the victim). However, by giving her the answers (the "correct" narratives) you're only continuing to stunt her growth. SHE HAS TO DO THIS WORK ON HER OWN.
[You're also continuing the pattern in the relationship where you're the cognitive one who has the answers and she's the thoughtless one who needs correcting all the time.]

If you want to reconcile, and it seems you do, I HIGHLY recommend taking a GIANT step back. You need to drop CT and go to individual therapy for yourself. She needs to up her individual therapy to 2x per week if her therapist can fit her in. Your marriage CANNOT be the patient right now, because your marriage needs to be rebuilt from the ground up. Problem is, you can't rise from the ashes until you both know who you are NOW and what you need NOW and what your deal breakers are coming into this new marriage (hint: she doesn't know these things yet and I'm not sure you really do either). It sounds like you have a fabulous CT, but that's a moot point. CT will make you spin MORE right now. If you very much enjoy your CT and your wife agrees, perhaps the CT can become your IC, and you can find a new CT 6 months down the line when you're both in different headspaces.

Also, I'd caution your view on marriage moving forward, that she should recommit as "I'M IN THIS FOREVER THE END." This was the hardest pill for me to swallow as a BS, and it took me almost 2 years in individual therapy to realize that there is no true promise of forever in any marriage, or rather maybe there shouldn't be. If at any time either WS or myself decides this marriage doesn't serve us/our children anymore, we should walk away. If we grow in different directions, if we no longer share common values or goals, if we try to come back together and it's just not there, we should separate respectfully and thoughtfully (aka not through an affair). If your feeling is your wife should stick by your side loyally forevermore (especially because she cheated), then you probably should divorce now. It's just a set up. This whole thing has taught me that marriage always always always must be a choice. Both partners must genuinely want it, work at it, and nurture it. And if it's not serving one person OR the other, and thus the family unit, why should the marriage not end? And as a therapist, I promise you your children will know if one of their parents isn't genuinely happy. They watch the dynamics at play and they are SPONGES, absorbing not just words, but tension and body language and relational habits. Long term, you cannot fool them-- they will know if you don't respect her or if she resents you, even if you're both fabulous parents and enjoy family time together.

In order for your marriage to survive in the way you want it to, you must be able to respect her as a person and see her as having equal value to you as a human being (I'm not sure this has ever been true for you?). She must see you as an equal and not above her (again, not sure this has ever been true?) and she must respect you as a person and partner. <--This is primarily why you both need IC-- because this would be a GIANT SHIFT in the dynamic of your marriage, and you both need to be VERY solid on who you are now and what you need to make this shift.

Some on this site will recommend against a separation and I think that's super fair. But for us, separating was the best thing that happened. Space to think. Space to feel. Space to work through long held resentments and relational patterns, without the pressure of nightly talks and coming up with new answers and "whys" and replaying all the old tapes, and without the pressure for physical intimacy. Maybe consider an in house separation, not as punishment but to allow you to take that GIANT STEP BACK and see the forest through the trees. And for you to grieve and process the trauma with an IC.

Sorry this is so long. You remind me so much of myself and I'd like to save you the full 2 years it took me to come to the realization that to save your marriage, you need to BACK AWAY from your marriage and work on yourself and allow her to actually work on herself. Determine who you each are more deeply, what strengths and challenges you bring into the marriage as an individual, what you want moving forward, and then see if you and your wife are growing in the same direction, or not.

Thinking of you. Those early months are fucking awful-- the trauma and the sadness and the exhaustion to the bone. Keep taking good care of yourself as best you can.

posts: 83   ·   registered: Jul. 24th, 2017
id 8734724
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Mene ( member #64377) posted at 8:49 PM on Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

You’re trying to do the work for her. Like the salt incident. Let her do it. She needs to lead here. She had to do all the work. She has to lead and do it. It will show whether she truly wants to reconcile.

The sex dynamic you guys had was dysfunctional. She’s not a good person no matter how you portray here. She’s selfish. She treated you with disdain and contempt when you had sex. She willingly gave it to the AP and made you suffer and beg to get any action before the affair and during it. She doesn’t find you attractive anymore despite the hysterical bonding at the moment. Don’t be fooled by this. It will die down. The test will come in a year.

Your wife needs to do a lot of work with a therapist to address her multiple, complex issues.

As do you. You’re co-dependent. And she knows that and expects you to do the heavy lifting. On everything.

90% of the time she talks about her pain and it’s all about her, her and her.

Life wasn’t meant to be fair...

posts: 846   ·   registered: Jul. 7th, 2018   ·   location: Cyberland
id 8734742
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Stevesn ( member #58312) posted at 9:14 PM on Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

You said you discussed her resistance in masturbating as she did for the AP. What did she say about it last night?

If she has already listed out the sex acts, do you have it documented already on paper or in email? If so use that as the basis to ask her for a plan to take back each one. How is she going to show you exponentially more than what she gave the AP. Ask her to document that.

Again, not the most important part of rebuilding, but definitely a foundational aspect.

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: 3388   ·   registered: Apr. 17th, 2017
id 8734747
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BluerThanBlue ( member #74855) posted at 9:38 PM on Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

That makes sense, but I need something to guide our conversations when we talk. I'm not sure how best to do that.

Check out the books that are in the SI primer.

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: 735   ·   registered: Jul. 13th, 2020
id 8734749
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 10:51 PM on Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

I think you mean UNWILLING.

As others have put more eloquently, she does what she wants and she really doesn't care if it is at your expense. She pretends she cares when you call her out, but she is clearly trying to pacify you.

I think you’re right. The result is I’m simply falling out of love with her. I don’t know that I love her anymore. I’m now leaning toward a separation—but now in that feeling being real, I just worry that I’m not doing anything too impulsive. It’s been two months and I haven’t seen enough change from her (to my satisfaction)—is that a fair amount of time to wait?

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734760
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 11:07 PM on Wednesday, May 11th, 2022

Doc, I've been following along. I'm a BS who had a VERY self-centered WS who completely lacked insight into his own behaviors/actions/triggers. With a heaping side of narcissism. I'm also a therapist (though I work with children and teens because I find them way cooler than adults).

I too am analytical by nature. Cognition first, feelings later. Make it make sense. Poke holes and analyze the words and answers. Questions, more questions... and my favorite-- helping him re-write his narrative to match reality. I was queen of this. 6 months post affair, I could tell him why he did what he did, how he was ACTUALLY feeling at the time, what he REALLY meant when he said XYZ, etc. And you're doing A LOT of that.

You should know-- ultimately, it got me NO WHERE. (except almost divorced with attorney fees)

As I read your thread, all I keep thinking is that you are doing ALL.THE.WORK. And aside from the obvious problems with that given your marriage dynamic, the truly biggest problem is you're stunting any ability she has to do the necessary work herself. If you give her all the "answers" and provide her with all the "realizations," how on earth is she supposed to LEARN to work through that process herself? Changing one's thought process, the way they work through both thoughts and feelings, is very hard work. Your wife has a serious deficit and needs to work on viewing the world differently (aka not blame shifting, negativity, always the victim). However, by giving her the answers (the "correct" narratives) you're only continuing to stunt her growth. SHE HAS TO DO THIS WORK ON HER OWN.
[You're also continuing the pattern in the relationship where you're the cognitive one who has the answers and she's the thoughtless one who needs correcting all the time.]

If you want to reconcile, and it seems you do, I HIGHLY recommend taking a GIANT step back. You need to drop CT and go to individual therapy for yourself. She needs to up her individual therapy to 2x per week if her therapist can fit her in. Your marriage CANNOT be the patient right now, because your marriage needs to be rebuilt from the ground up. Problem is, you can't rise from the ashes until you both know who you are NOW and what you need NOW and what your deal breakers are coming into this new marriage (hint: she doesn't know these things yet and I'm not sure you really do either). It sounds like you have a fabulous CT, but that's a moot point. CT will make you spin MORE right now. If you very much enjoy your CT and your wife agrees, perhaps the CT can become your IC, and you can find a new CT 6 months down the line when you're both in different headspaces.

Also, I'd caution your view on marriage moving forward, that she should recommit as "I'M IN THIS FOREVER THE END." This was the hardest pill for me to swallow as a BS, and it took me almost 2 years in individual therapy to realize that there is no true promise of forever in any marriage, or rather maybe there shouldn't be. If at any time either WS or myself decides this marriage doesn't serve us/our children anymore, we should walk away. If we grow in different directions, if we no longer share common values or goals, if we try to come back together and it's just not there, we should separate respectfully and thoughtfully (aka not through an affair). If your feeling is your wife should stick by your side loyally forevermore (especially because she cheated), then you probably should divorce now. It's just a set up. This whole thing has taught me that marriage always always always must be a choice. Both partners must genuinely want it, work at it, and nurture it. And if it's not serving one person OR the other, and thus the family unit, why should the marriage not end? And as a therapist, I promise you your children will know if one of their parents isn't genuinely happy. They watch the dynamics at play and they are SPONGES, absorbing not just words, but tension and body language and relational habits. Long term, you cannot fool them-- they will know if you don't respect her or if she resents you, even if you're both fabulous parents and enjoy family time together.

In order for your marriage to survive in the way you want it to, you must be able to respect her as a person and see her as having equal value to you as a human being (I'm not sure this has ever been true for you?). She must see you as an equal and not above her (again, not sure this has ever been true?) and she must respect you as a person and partner. <--This is primarily why you both need IC-- because this would be a GIANT SHIFT in the dynamic of your marriage, and you both need to be VERY solid on who you are now and what you need to make this shift.

Some on this site will recommend against a separation and I think that's super fair. But for us, separating was the best thing that happened. Space to think. Space to feel. Space to work through long held resentments and relational patterns, without the pressure of nightly talks and coming up with new answers and "whys" and replaying all the old tapes, and without the pressure for physical intimacy. Maybe consider an in house separation, not as punishment but to allow you to take that GIANT STEP BACK and see the forest through the trees. And for you to grieve and process the trauma with an IC.

Sorry this is so long. You remind me so much of myself and I'd like to save you the full 2 years it took me to come to the realization that to save your marriage, you need to BACK AWAY from your marriage and work on yourself and allow her to actually work on herself. Determine who you each are more deeply, what strengths and challenges you bring into the marriage as an individual, what you want moving forward, and then see if you and your wife are growing in the same direction, or not.

Thinking of you. Those early months are fucking awful-- the trauma and the sadness and the exhaustion to the bone. Keep taking good care of yourself as best you can.

Thank you for this. We disagree on the concept of marriage (I very much think it should be a life time commitment—if it’s not, and only a choice, you never have the freedom to risk true conflict as the other can always just walk away). Other than that though, I think your advice is spot on and I’m in agreement.

I’m going to discuss with her what separation would look like. An in-house separation seems awkward, but it does have the upside of maintaining the family home and requires little change. The decision to take this path would also take sex off the table and I suspect that will be difficult to stick too if we’re around each other all the time. Lastly, we have an overnight trip planned for next week (in taking her to a comedy show and overnight hotel stay for her bday and I feel like it would be cruel of me to cancel that on her).

Perhaps the short term answer is I take the big step back you suggest—no more leading her through nightly talks. We discuss this in CT tomorrow morning and we ride this out for a week. We do the overnight trip and then I re-evaluate where things are then. If in same spot, we perhaps try the in-house separation—which will be difficult as we’ll need to either bunk with kids or move one of them.

Ultimately though I know your underlying point is right—I’m leading her to the answers and she’s learning nothing and probably resenting me for it (even though she says she isn’t).

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734761
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 12:07 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

You’re trying to do the work for her. Like the salt incident. Let her do it. She needs to lead here. She had to do all the work. She has to lead and do it. It will show whether she truly wants to reconcile.

The sex dynamic you guys had was dysfunctional. She’s not a good person no matter how you portray here. She’s selfish. She treated you with disdain and contempt when you had sex. She willingly gave it to the AP and made you suffer and beg to get any action before the affair and during it. She doesn’t find you attractive anymore despite the hysterical bonding at the moment. Don’t be fooled by this. It will die down. The test will come in a year.

Your wife needs to do a lot of work with a therapist to address her multiple, complex issues.

As do you. You’re co-dependent. And she knows that and expects you to do the heavy lifting. On everything.

90% of the time she talks about her pain and it’s all about her, her and her.

You're spot on. I'm looking forward to starting my own IC issues so I can focus on me instead of my wife--as you all pointed out, I should have done that from the start.

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734773
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annb ( member #22386) posted at 12:24 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

It’s been two months and I haven’t seen enough change from her (to my satisfaction)—is that a fair amount of time to wait?


^^Quickly chiming in here, my response would be a resounding no.

Your wife betrayed you. We've all been there, done that, have the t-shirt.

From years being on this board and my personal experience with this hellish nightmare, I believe the general consensus is to give it at least 6 months before making any hasty decisions.

IMO, your wife is making progress. She's trying to undo decades of learned behavior. I understand you are losing patience, but healing from infidelity is a marathon, not a sprint. Currently you are in the anger phase, the full impact of the infidelity is all too real, and is the most difficult to overcome. Life as you knew it has been blown up by a nuclear explosion, the fallout is far and wide, and it's going to take time to assess the damage and figure out if your marriage can be salvaged.

posts: 11506   ·   registered: Jan. 10th, 2009   ·   location: Northeast
id 8734774
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longsadstory1952 ( member #29048) posted at 1:03 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

My friend. If you are thinking of a separation, and I cannot fault you one iota, then look at the divorce/separation page. There you will see a legion of posts that say "In house separation sucks." While I respect your intellectual thoughts on how it might work, the emotional issues make it nigh on impossible.

Let me say that the best thing I ever did was do a summer move out. I got an apartment and after the first lonely days, I became a new man. I found my balls again. It made me the person I am today. And no I was not fucking every woman by the pool, though my WW was sure I was. I was finding clarity and loving it. Trust me on this.

I can’t tell you how freeing the thing is. The woman that was sucking another guys dick is not around to tell you to take out the dry cleaning. If you want to let it pile up to the ceiling there is no one to guilt you. If you want to go to a Chinese restaurant and eat your favorite food while flirting with the waitress, you can. No one can guilt you. If you want to binge on your favorite shows, so be it. No one can gainsay you.

Dude, you are obviously a very smart well adjusted in shape guy. You need a wastrel, drunk, adulteress like a hole in the head. Maybe she can fix all this. But having her sleep in the guest room and niggling about paying the bills, taking out the garbage, fixing her breakfast, buying her toys is not the way to go. Plus pussy bombing.

Have I made myself clear? PM me for more if you need it.

You have found your anger and picked up your balls. Keep it up.

posts: 1127   ·   registered: Jul. 14th, 2010
id 8734782
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Dude67 ( member #75700) posted at 1:05 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

I would agree that your WW is making progress. Progress, whether in IC, A recovery, MC, golf, work advancement, etc. all comes in fits and starts. One step forward two steps back, two steps forward one step back, etc.

You’re truly just out of DDay. Both of you are probably doing better than most in the post D day timeframe.

You’re angry, frustrated, and impatient with your WW right now for reasons that include, but well surpass, her A. With all issues that you snd your WW confronted prior to her A, or issues you each had to tackle individually, you’ve always been the more logical, thoughtful, empathetic, and results oriented one in the relationship.

You’re now expecting your WW to be as squared away as you. She was never the more squared away spouse prior to the A, and certainly this hasn’t changed post A. However, slow as it may seem, she appears to be making progress.

I guess what I’m saying is that if you try to hold your WW to the same standards and life’s performance that you maintain for yourself, you will be extremely disappointed and not get through R. I recommend holding your WW to the standard that, taking into account progress’ inherent fits snd starts, she’s making a modicum of progress.

I do agree that in house separation isn’t effective. I also don’t think threatening D is going to work towards your goal right now. Your WW appreciates how you have handled everything since DDay. She appreciates the fact that you’ve stuck by her despite her terribleness prior to her A, during her A, and even now.

Many posters are telling you that she needs to do the heavy lifting- that you’re doing too much. I disagree. She simply isn’t capable of lifting as much as you. It’s not in her DNA.

I recommend that you read Walloped snd mrswalloped threads. He was like you. His wife a bit more like your wife. He always did the heavy lifting, she really didn’t get it, and two years post DDay D was on the table. Mr walloped was essentially done.

After that, she really started to get it snd R is now highly successful. Perhaps your WW should post in the WW section, as mrs walloped did. I think she would agree that it was a game changer for her.

posts: 401   ·   registered: Oct. 21st, 2020
id 8734783
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Mamabear312 ( member #59811) posted at 3:13 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

I don’t post often anymore so I can’t remember how to do quotes, but I don’t think I explained myself well on the view of marriage. I 100% married as a lifetime commitment. But I also learned that saying "I married for life no matter what" or "you fucked me over so you now have to promise me we’ll be married forever for me to stay" is super… well, unhelpful and not all that reality based. The truth is, sometimes people change in ways that make them fundamentally incompatible. One partner evolves as a person, and the other partner has no interest in evolving. One person drastically changes their values or belief system, or shows a side of themselves their partner hasn’t seen (as in affairs). Basically, the idea of this lifetime relationship as impenetrable as long as both people remain committed to each other is… wishful thinking, really.

But even if we disagree on that, I’m glad you found my other feedback helpful. As for the separation, we did both an in house separation (WS lived in basement guest room) and an out of home (we have a second property nearby). The way more helpful separation was when he lived out of the home, so if that’s feasible financially I highly recommend it. However, I disagree with a prior poster than an in house separation can’t be effective if proper boundaries are laid down. Maybe that’s how you can use your last CT session.

posts: 83   ·   registered: Jul. 24th, 2017
id 8734799
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faithfulman ( member #66002) posted at 7:14 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

I did. She’s threading a needle—it’s not that she’s opposed to doing them with me, it’s that she wants our sexual adventures to be ours and not based in painting over the affair. I think they can be both.

See the bolded part? That is pure horseshit.

She did what she did with him willingly because she wanted to. Maybe the motivation was to please him. Also, many women are just turned on more by some men and will perform sex acts with them that they won't with others.

This is true outside of the realm of infidelity as well. What might be offered for one man may not be for another.

I mentioned early on that I thought I could move past the sexual acts, but this development brought me back to day-1. Now it’s like I’m living with AP’s former whore, who is telling me certain things are only for AP. It’s impossible for me to get over anything looking through that lens.


It's not "like that", it is that.

I recall when we had the exchange where I asked you if you could deal with her having gone so much further with him than she was willing to give to you. You said very unequivocally that you could.

I am not pointing this out to say "I told you so", but to point out that your feeling can and will evolve, over, weeks, months, and years.

For the first 3/4 of this thread you have been in ultra "I want my wife back, I want my family intact" mode. Very common. That's when you, and so many other men thing they can bury the thoughts and mind-movies of their wife doing EVERYTHING with another man or men.

Honestly, it's very difficult to look past any kind of sexually intimate activity, even sexting, which I think is extremely intimate, and often not part of the legitimate marriage.

Let alone hardcore shit like parking-lot blowjobs, and bondage anal sex in motels. This is tough on betrayed men and women, but it appears to bother the men much more, more often. For many it never goes away. The mind movies and the absolute disrespect of it is hard to shake.

As you see how little she is willing to do for you in terms of sex, in terms of introspection, in terms of controlling herself, etc. it will grind on you. And often, the love just dies. and I am not just talking about sex acts she gave freely to the shitbag, her overall effort appear to be piss-poor.

You are finding your anger. You need your anger. I disagree with the others that think you need to be so understanding of her. They got it backwards.

I also disagree with the characterization of you as some dominating jerk over the meek defenseless woman. That is blameshifting and YOU NEVER see this suggestion when the cheater is a man.

Many relationships, there is a more assertive and less assertive partner. In fact, that generally works better than two people who want to be the assertive one, or the less assertive one. That makes a fit. Not everybody can take the lead. And sometimes leading is split among certain tasks.

Lemme ask you - did she every try to be the lead outside of the "audition period" at the beginning of your relationship?

If anything, she has shown that she is willing to be far more dismissive, ruthless, and denigrating to you, by the way she talked about you and what she did behind your back. The difference is that she is chickenshit when she is in your face.

Keep exploring the side of you that doesn't want to simply make things go back to the way they were. The side of you that would advise your homeboy when his wife fucked the cop. etc.

That is the side of you that will protect you.

posts: 920   ·   registered: Aug. 28th, 2018
id 8734817
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Mene ( member #64377) posted at 8:44 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

^ THIS

Life wasn’t meant to be fair...

posts: 846   ·   registered: Jul. 7th, 2018   ·   location: Cyberland
id 8734818
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 11:50 AM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

Thank you all for this last round of posts. Even though there’s now differing advice coming in, I’m finding help in every post and it’s rounding out my perspective.

I think we had a productive night. I laid out how I felt currently, letting her know I had fallen out of love with her because it was quite simply impossible to love the woman who was capable of doing what she did. I also noted that until I could understand how she could do it, I’d never be able to forgive her, and that I need her to change so much about her behavior before I could ever consider building a new relationship with her (her narcissism, self-obsession, lack of empathy and contestant victimization).

I also told her that for the first time in two months I was more excited about the prospect of one day finding a new woman who would love and respect me than slogging through this hell with her—meaning I am no longer willing to lead her to all the answers and no longer want to hear about how sad she is about herself right now. I expect her entire focus to be on comforting me and working through her issues in her mind until she realizes how fucked her perspective often is.

Secondly, for the first time in two months, and at my prompting, she asked me how I felt about our marriage pre and during the affair. And I told her, digging through much of what I’ve noted here (her sexual cruelty to me, victimization of herself constantly, etc.) but I also told her she was always my best friend and I always loved her.

Thirdly, we discussed our current physical relationship. I told her that she clearly had no sexual attraction to me during the last several years of our marriage (she didn’t quite agree; she said she objectively has always found me very attractive, but agrees we lost the romantic spark). So I felt her desire to have sex with me now was highly suspect—in fact, she’s doing now exactly what she did when we met and exactly what she did with AP—using sex to get what she wants.

That upset her and she reset herself and explained that the last several weeks has been the first time in her life where she hasn’t felt used for sex, including with me and with AP. She said for the first time she feels connected to someone else who clearly loves and respects her and that she never felt that was during our marriage or with AP. The result is our sex life has been the only bright spot of the last two months for her (I suppose for me as well).

I’m a bit torn on her position on that—on one hand, it makes sense, but on the other hand, I don’t think it’s possible to correct her damaged view of sex so quickly. There are more demons there to dig through, but that’s for another day.

It left her with a tremendous amount to process, but interestingly, it did the same to me. It occurred to me that she is the only person I’ve ever known in my life who I prefer to be around over being alone. That’s not to say I dislike everyone, just that I really like being alone lol.

So it struck me that even now, looking at her and feeling we might not make it through this, I still want to be around her. We spent the night having a productive, difficult talk, but I never felt burdened by her presence.

I realize many of you are right in that we have a co-dependent relationship: she needs me as her rock/decision-maker and I need her to feel comfort around another human being. My inability to walk away from her initially is likely tied to a subconscious fear I have of never finding another person who I enjoy being around as much as her—I very much want to explore that further in therapy.

[This message edited by Drstrangelove at 1:32 PM, Thursday, May 12th]

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734827
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 1:24 PM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

I can’t tell you how freeing the thing is. The woman that was sucking another guys dick is not around to tell you to take out the dry cleaning. If you want to let it pile up to the ceiling there is no one to guilt you. If you want to go to a Chinese restaurant and eat your favorite food while flirting with the waitress, you can. No one can guilt you. If you want to binge on your favorite shows, so be it. No one can gainsay you.

I don’t feel this way. I very much enjoy being around my wife, even if I don’t feel the same about her as before. She has never nagged me a day in my life (she just bottled up all her anger toward me and feelings of being unloved and used then to justify fucking another man).

The point though is that the home life is still very good. We both turn off the drama when around the kids and they’re very much happy. We then dig into our issues at night—and it’s been very draining, but I’m doing that by choice right now. As soon as I don’t want to do it, I won’t.

I recognize that I need to allow this more time before I pull the plug, so for now, I’ll stay the course. But I am no longer spoon-feeding her the answers—which will be hard as hell because they seem so fucking obvious most of the time. We’ll see if she starts to figure it out. If not, I suspect I will lose patience for our talks fairly quickly, and once that happens, I feel like a free fall out of this relationship could be inevitable. And that’s my problem—I keep looking a step ahead and it doesn’t look good. It’s on her to change the forecast though.

From years being on this board and my personal experience with this hellish nightmare, I believe the general consensus is to give it at least 6 months before making any hasty decisions.

I’m not promising that I won’t separate before six months (move out), but I am promising I won’t move for any final separation/divorce until Sept. 15 (six months from DDay). I think that’s a fair minimum effort from me.

[This message edited by Drstrangelove at 1:25 PM, Thursday, May 12th]

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734832
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 1:28 PM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

I guess what I’m saying is that if you try to hold your WW to the same standards and life’s performance that you maintain for yourself, you will be extremely disappointed and not get through R. I recommend holding your WW to the standard that, taking into account progress’ inherent fits snd starts, she’s making a modicum of progress.

Of course you’re right—and that’s more or less how the CT has felt. But I do need to see more. I don’t know how to define it but I’m trusting I’ll know it when I see it.

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734833
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HellFire ( member #59305) posted at 1:42 PM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

she feels connected to someone else who clearly loves and respects her and that she never felt that was during our marriage or with AP. The result is our sex life has been the only bright spot of the last two months.

And,yet,she was completely uninhibited with AP,knowing he didn't love or respect her. She was doing things,sexually, for him,that she hadn't done in years,if ever,for you. So her comment is not true.

You said she was using sex to get what she wants. Which is what I said earlier in this post. Again,I suggest you completely stop having sex with her,and then see what she does. You said,earlier, when I suggested this,that she was doing the work. Yet,lately you've come to see you are leading her to everything. Then she tops it all off with porn star sex. The sex is clouding your judgement. Stop leading. Stop the sex. See if she rises to the occasion, so to speak. If she no longer has you to lead,and she can't use sex to get her desired result, will she rise up? It's super important that you find out.

A separation might be good for you. It doesn't have to be permanent. But it will clear your head,amd it will possibly give her the kick in the butt that she desperately needs.

[This message edited by HellFire at 1:43 PM, Thursday, May 12th]

posts: 4332   ·   registered: Jun. 20th, 2017   ·   location: The Midwest
id 8734836
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 1:42 PM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

However, I disagree with a prior poster than an in house separation can’t be effective if proper boundaries are laid down.

An in-house separation to me sounds like living together but elongating physical contact. My best guess is that it would get cold very quickly in the house if we made that rule. Even just removing sex for the table entirely seems like a very complicated prospect at this point as it would likely worsen conflict—right now we are both using it to reconnect and recognize that we care about each other after very difficult discussions. Removing that reprieve will escalate things—perhaps in unintended ways.

If we then add on no hugs, kisses, cuddles, etc., I fear it might entirely sever us. Which again, might be for the best, but it feels too soon to do that still. I am having a VERY hard time examining this objectively as I recognize it’s an entirely subjective situation—there’s no advice I can give myself or get from the internet that will be a perfect fit in the exact moment I’m in.

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734837
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 1:51 PM on Thursday, May 12th, 2022

And,yet,she was completely uninhibited with AP,knowing he didn't love or respect her. She was doing things,sexually, for him,that she hadn't done in years,of ever,for you. So her comment is not true.

But that’s the point—she wasn’t doing them with him because she loved him or felt loved by him. She did it at first because it was the first time in 15 years she felt a sexual/romantic spark with a man. She kept doing it because the spark was still there for her and she wanted to keep his attention as she felt she liked him more than he cared about her.

She was absolutely using sex to keep him pleased and win him over—exactly how she won me over when we met.

Now sex with me, according to her is different for the first time in her entire life. I’m as skeptical as you are. But my eyes are open and I feel like this is a relatively easy thing to explore and probe. She’s around me all the time—she can’t fake it always all the time.

Edit: and I should be clear, her reasoning for the changed feelings for me is because she felt I didn’t love and respect her. Now, for the first time in more than a decade, through my words and actions, she’s seeing she was wrong. That’s the source of her pain and regret right now—that she had a man who loved and respected her all along and she never knew it and I never showed or told her (and that’s admittedly on me—I felt my positive actions overcame the negative ones and lack of verbal support).

[This message edited by Drstrangelove at 1:57 PM, Thursday, May 12th]

Me: BH, 37
Her: WW, 37
DDay: March 15, 2022

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8734839
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