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Newest Member: Gtacch

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

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BluerThanBlue ( member #74855) posted at 2:29 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

Her letter is more nonsense; she’s trying to rewrite her history to suit the current circumstances. And as I said before, she likes letters because you’re not that there to tell her she’s full of it.

If she came on SI, I really don’t think she would be honest. Like her letters, it would just be another avenue to manipulate you. She would learn the "language of remorse" but there would no sincerity behind it.

The exchange you described is a case in point. She’s great at knowing exactly what to say and how to act at certain moments to soothe you and get you to let her guard down… but the minute the conversation takes a turn she doesn’t like or require any accountability or action on her part, the masks slips and you see her true face: selfish, remorseless, and a little bit cruel.

I realize you’re not going to like the suggestion, but stop the MC. There is simply no point in going with someone who doesn’t want to do the work. I also think you should consult with a lawyer, find out what the likely outcome would be in your situation, get your ducks in a row, and file. It will either be a wake-up call, or she’ll roll with it, in which case you just saved yourself years of agony.

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 8735301
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clouds777 ( member #72442) posted at 3:16 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

She just admitted that she us writing all that nonsense to get a specific response out of you. In this instance, she wants you to shoulder some blame for her depression and even though she intentionally hid it from you and refused to speak to you, she wants your pity for it now. She is literally trying anything she can think of to make herself the victim. She watches you hurt and she just doesn't care. It's just mean! I think you're right as you have absolutely nothing to work with here.

I know you're afraid that if you let go of the outcome and watch to fi d out if she can sink or swim, she will most definitely sink. But you have really got to do it. Maybe she will miraculously swim. But you've just got to stop trying to save your marriage and find out what she's going to do or you will just keep getting more and more hurt.

I know you say that the kids are happy etc etc but they are not going to remain oblivious. Let go of that fear, work on yourself and let her sink or swim, even if you're already sure she will sink.

posts: 221   ·   registered: Jan. 1st, 2020
id 8735309
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 3:39 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

Bluer and Clouds, you’re both 100% right and I’ve more or less told her all of that this morning.

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

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8735311
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MickeyBill2016 ( member #56459) posted at 6:06 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

She is 37 years old. To expect her to change her personality in 6 months will not happen, she may be chipping away at change but it's huge job with little or no guarantee of success. But she doesn't know how or what to do, Doc can tell her but that may be worse...she gotta learn it herself.
For 20 of those years, either intentionally or just how her brain is wired and family life taught her has learned coping instincts about men, love, relationships and her sexuality. She has made bad choices like the slutting it up at college and this affair. Right now that all is coming back at her like a freight train and she doesn't know what to do. Dr or the MC can get her going a few steps in the healing direction but then she reverts to her fight or flight choice and does the wrong thing or does nothing.

For example-When Doc goes into the bathroom for 20 minutes a normal person would check in after 5 "hey,are you ok?" but she does nothing or falls asleep, does she want to give Doc "space" or does she think "well I'm glad that's over...ZZZ" maybe the MC could get her to answer.

9 years married.
13 years divorced.

posts: 1230   ·   registered: Dec. 17th, 2016   ·   location: West of the 405 North of the Mexican border
id 8735320
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MickeyBill2016 ( member #56459) posted at 6:09 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

My XWW wanted to talk at the MC because the M would be a referee and when things got too hot the MC would turn to me and ask "Mickey, what do you think about what she just shared...?"
It made us talk but she knew in 55 minutes it would be over.

One more reason not to let her see this thread, her personal letters to Doc have been posted and read by hundreds of strangers.

For most that might be a privacy violation and may cause her stop writing to Doc, when it is a decent way for her to communicate

[This message edited by MickeyBill2016 at 6:13 PM, Saturday, May 14th]

9 years married.
13 years divorced.

posts: 1230   ·   registered: Dec. 17th, 2016   ·   location: West of the 405 North of the Mexican border
id 8735321
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 6:22 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

I realize you’re not going to like the suggestion, but stop the MC. There is simply no point in going with someone who doesn’t want to do the work. I also think you should consult with a lawyer, find out what the likely outcome would be in your situation, get your ducks in a row, and file. It will either be a wake-up call, or she’ll roll with it, in which case you just saved yourself years of agony.

I am going to MC on Monday and letting her know we’d like to discontinue and perhaps I’ll see her solo moving forward.

I’ve already consulted my lawyer and have a prenup in place. I’m not filing for divorce yet.

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

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8735323
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 6:51 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

One more reason not to let her see this thread, her personal letters to Doc have been posted and read by hundreds of strangers.

For most that might be a privacy violation and may cause her stop writing to Doc, when it is a decent way for her to communicate.

Yea, that occurred to me as well, but I’m willing to risk that if she genuinely wants the help. I shared the letters for additional perspective and it has helped me—I hope she would understand.

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

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8735327
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 6:58 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

She is 37 years old. To expect her to change her personality in 6 months will not happen, she may be chipping away at change but it's huge job with little or no guarantee of success. But she doesn't know how or what to do, Doc can tell her but that may be worse...she gotta learn it herself.

For 20 of those years, either intentionally or just how her brain is wired and family life taught her has learned coping instincts about men, love, relationships and her sexuality. She has made bad choices like the slutting it up at college and this affair. Right now that all is coming back at her like a freight train and she doesn't know what to do. Dr or the MC can get her going a few steps in the healing direction but then she reverts to her fight or flight choice and does the wrong thing or does nothing.

Interesting that you mention "fight or flight" as she has as well, including last night. She said there have been a few times during our talks where she has forced herself to resist the urge to run away from it—and I suspect it can be applied more broadly to our entire marriage.

This is all quite simply too hard for her and I feel like she is going to break; perhaps before me. I also began wondering today if that’s what I want: her to walk away from me so I can justify to myself that it’s all on her. I hope not, but I see how hard I’m being on her and I’m doing it knowing that she can’t handle it. I’d like to think I’m just hoping she’ll surprise me and start fighting for me.

For example-When Doc goes into the bathroom for 20 minutes a normal person would check in after 5 "hey,are you ok?" but she does nothing or falls asleep, does she want to give Doc "space" or does she think "well I'm glad that's over...ZZZ" maybe the MC could get her to answer.

I think it’s absolutely the latter. I think she’s overwhelmed and entirely focused on herself—it’s pure self preservation. In that moment she has a reprieve from me and she can finally rest. All her compassion for me is forced, and it’s transparent, so in those moments when she’s mentally and emotionally taxed, she can’t pretend to care about me.

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

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8735328
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MickeyBill2016 ( member #56459) posted at 7:37 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

All her compassion for me is forced, and it’s transparent, so in those moments when she’s mentally and emotionally taxed, she can’t pretend to care about me.

That's is a tough thing to realize.
Is that new (post affair) or just her being her?

9 years married.
13 years divorced.

posts: 1230   ·   registered: Dec. 17th, 2016   ·   location: West of the 405 North of the Mexican border
id 8735333
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Never2late ( new member #79079) posted at 7:48 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

Doc your last observation is spot on.

posts: 49   ·   registered: Jul. 7th, 2021
id 8735336
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sisoon ( Moderator #31240) posted at 7:59 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

It feels like the person I loved does not love me and it makes me sad. And she had me fooled--I thought she very much loved me. So now my digging, I suspect, is me finding out how to know the difference moving forward--be it with her or anyone else. I lived a very naive life clearly; I was overconfident in her feelings for me. I still feel like I have more to learn from her before I go my separate way or rebuild with her.

Yeah. Yup. And it probably wakes up all the self-doubt you've ever experienced. You misread her. What other important parts of your life have you misread? You love her. She abandoned you. What else will abandon you? Sad mad scared ashamed all in one bundle. It seems like too big a burden.

Are you in IC? If so, what do you want out of IC? Has your IC agreed to help you get that? Has your IC offered a better substitute, or is the IC doing what the IC wnats?

If not, a good IC will help. The burden seems too heavy, but it's something you CAN deal with. A good IC will help you find the strengths you need - those strengths are either in you already, or the sources are in you already, and a good IC can help you tap them much more quickly than an Internet forum can..

*****

Talking about something in MC could be for many reasons. My W felt the answers were too awful for me to hear or for her to share without the support of a neutral observer.

*****

Your W's letter says to me she plays the Victim in Drama Triangles. Also, she's looking outside for help in things that she has to look inside for.

You can find info on DTs easily. I'd say start with a search on 'Karpman drama triangle', because Karpman identified and documented it, but his writing can be opaque, and his website used to point to a lot of free stuff but the last time I looked was more commercial.

*****

Your posts say to me you may play Victim and Persecutor. You give her direction and thereby try to control her actions in areas that she needs to control herself. Your best bet is to stop.

My reco is to be more direct and honest with yourself about what you want and what you're doing and willing to do to get it. You want to know if she loves you. How will you know that - one way or the other?

You say you want your W to show she can change. I assure you, she can change. Why do you care about her ability to change?

You want her to be in IC. What's your goal for her IC? Are those goals for you or for her? Are they achievable? How will you know how/if she's progressing?

What changes do you want? What do you want your M to be? Will she agree to change that way? What kind of M does she want? Will she agree to create an M that you want?

*****

What are you getting our of MC now? What do you want to get? If they don't match, what are the problems? Stoppong MC may be a good thing to do, but maybe not.

*****

I know you've been hit with something you never expected and that you weren't prepared for. That doesn't change the fact that you need to deal with it.

It takes a lot of work for a BS to heal, and it's work that the WS can't do for the BS. YOU and only you can process your feelings.

You and only you can define what you want in life after being betrayed. Yes, yes, yes, it's normal to for the BS to focus on what the WS did and is doing. Yes, it's normal for an analytical person to stick to their head after being betrayed. But staying in your head is a trap, a dead-end.

But recovering, healing, and thriving require the BS to do the necessary work on the BS.

I can easily be wrong about this, Drs, but I think you're distracting yourself from the work you need to do.

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

posts: 27082   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8735337
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Trdd ( member #65989) posted at 8:39 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

It doesn't actually sound like forced compassion from my distant bleacher seat. It sounds more like someone who has to learn how to do something new that is quite difficult (heal their BS and fix their own flaws) and is, quite naturally, struggling to get it right.

Only you can tell if the effort is enough or beneficial for you. It's sounding like your patience is wearing thin and your standards remain very high. Even if she is trying hard, it may not be enough for you. I think you are perhaps expecting too much too soon from her but after her A and badmouthing, she's fortunate you're giving her the chance for R at all.

[This message edited by Trdd at 8:41 PM, Saturday, May 14th]

posts: 573   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8735343
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 8:52 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

That's is a tough thing to realize.
Is that new (post affair) or just her being her?

Always, but it’s crystal clear now. Truthfully, I’ve never required much of her compassion. I’m very self-sustaining.

The one time in my life I was at a real low was the beginning of 2019—and I have been thinking back to that timeframe often post-D-Day. I don’t recall if I mentioned this already in my thread, but I had a very rare tumor in my nasal cavity—it blocked off one of my nostrils and after a failed surgery to remove it, it inflamed and blocked both nostrils. There was a period of about 5-6 weeks where I couldn’t sleep at all.

The tumor was vascular, branching off from a main artery to the brain. Following the botched removal attempt, the wound in the tumor would burst a few times a day and I’d lose significant amounts of blood (toward the end, it was about a cup or so at a time, 2-3x a day.

We couldn’t get a good biopsy on it and the likelihood was that it was cancerous. I spent two months in my room, alone 99% of the time; awake 24/7. I dedicated all of my effort into getting into the world’s top cancer location (which was hard without a biopsy to prove I had cancer). Through persistence, I found a lovely young doctor willing to see me—once I was in the door, I met with the world’s top nasal tumor surgeon.

Cancer or not, he knew he needed to remove it ASAP because of all the blood I was losing and it was getting worse each day. He didn’t feel comfortable doing the surgery with a need for significant blood transfusions—it was too unsafe—so I had to meet with another surgeon who specialized in brain angiograms, so he could create a blockage in the blood vessel to allow the nasal surgeon time to operate without me bleeding to death.

It all worked out well and the tumor wasn’t overtly cancerous (too rare for anyone to know for sure and it’s lands in the middle of the benign/malignant spectrum)—but through lots of follow up MRI’s, it looks like I’ll be fine.

I share all that to say I was completely alone during those weeks. It was all on me—I was fighting to survive and I never felt so alone in my life. I kept most of what I wrote close to the vest—I didn’t want to scare my wife and family. We had a three-year old son and a six-month old daughter. I didn’t think about it a lot, but I knew the odds of my survival from the ordeal were likely around 50-50.

My wife was terrified during all of this—dealing with her job and the kids. I just sat alone in my corner of the house with a blinding headache and bleeding everywhere.

Was my wife compassionate? I think she was at times, but my lasting memory of the time is loneliness—maybe I’m being unfair though.

Either way, when I see her forced compassion now, it calls all of our relationship into question, including that nasal tumor ordeal.

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

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8735347
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 10:12 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

It doesn't actually sound like forced compassion from my distant bleacher seat. It sounds more like someone who has to learn how to do something new that is quite difficult (heal their BS and fix their own flaws) and is, quite naturally, struggling to get it right.

Only you can tell if the effort is enough or beneficial for you. It's sounding like your patience is wearing thin and your standards remain very high. Even if she is trying hard, it may not be enough for you. I think you are perhaps expecting too much too soon from her but after her A and badmouthing, she's fortunate you're giving her the chance for R at all.

I think it’s two things, so you’re partially right—for sure the horribleness of what she did is a factor. I feel like I’m tapped out mentally and emotionally just sitting here open to R. It has me at my limit. So when I see any bull shit, I don’t have far to get over the line.

Secondly though, I was really unaware at how self-centered she was and I’m learning more and more as we dig into our marriage. It’s scary to think I was married to such a selfish person my whole adult life and just dealt with it like it was totally normal.

So now when I see it come out, like her depression self-pity from last night, it sets me off. I’m not willing to be in a relationship with that person, so there are bare minimum things that I need to see change immediately.

And I understand all of this is hard, but so what? It’s also all very much in her control. She can think through her words and actions before she speaks and acts—rather than asking me how I felt that she was in a depression, she could ask me how it felt to live with a hateful, selfish wife in a depression? It’s just the smallest effort to show she can see a world outside her own head.

And if I start to see that, I absolutely believe we can have a successful R. That’s the bare minimum though.

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

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8735358
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Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 10:47 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

We just had a beloved family member(M) go through this. His W thought with family members pitching in he would have someone with him all the time. It became clear to his wife that he needed HER. No one else could do. She put aside everything, including a beloved job, to be whatever he needed. When you were alone did you ask her to spend more time with you. She sounds like things need to be spelled out and you sound stoic. Those two personalities trip each other up. She isn’t empathetic enough to read your mind. I am glad you two are talking. Keep it up.

And btw his scans are clear.

When things go wrong, don’t go with them. Elvis

posts: 3296   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8735360
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clouds777 ( member #72442) posted at 11:24 PM on Saturday, May 14th, 2022

So now when I see it come out, like her depression self-pity from last night, it sets me off. I’m not willing to be in a relationship with that person, so there are bare minimum things that I need to see change immediately.

And I understand all of this is hard, but so what? It’s also all very much in her control. She can think through her words and actions before she speaks and acts—rather than asking me how I felt that she was in a depression, she could ask me how it felt to live with a hateful, selfish wife in a depression? It’s just the smallest effort to show she can see a world outside her own head.

Great. Progress. You decide what you want and what you will accept and don't accept anything less from her , even if it's "hard" for her. It's a step towards getting out of infidelity with or without her.

If she wanted to make progress , she would. She is not entitled to all the time in the world to learn how to be a decent human being to her husband and family. Sure, someone as immature as her can't change overnight. But she isn't trying. She just isn't. She is using her energy to spin the narrative she wants because that's where she is comfortable. She is focusing all of her energy on maintaining her victim status and you are right to call her out and not stand for any of it.

posts: 221   ·   registered: Jan. 1st, 2020
id 8735362
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Wiseoldfool ( member #78413) posted at 12:11 AM on Sunday, May 15th, 2022

Dr Strangelove (if that is indeed your name - movie reference),

I’ve read this whole thread from the start.

I’ve walked almost exactly the path you’re on. Wednesday marks four years since I learned of my wife’s affair.

The details of the marriage before the affair and the affairs are somewhat similar but what is much more similar is the relationship dynamics between you and your wife. Many, many of your post dday experiences are exactly like mine.

My advice to you is give yourself time to let this sort out. You have time. All you need. The overwhelming sense I get from you is that you are dispositionally a very decisive man, able to assess and decide and execute in every other aspect of your life. But in this aspect, you can make the case for divorce or reconciliation with equal conviction, and you’re essentially paralyzed, which is unfamiliar to you.

So take your time. See what happens. Let it happen. Where I’m from, we say you can’t push a rope. It’s a way of saying some things have to happen in their own way and their own time.

Good luck. I’m rooting for you.

[This message edited by Wiseoldfool at 12:12 AM, Sunday, May 15th]

Every secret you keep with your affair partner sustains the affair. Every lie you tell, every misunderstanding you permit, every deflection you pose, every omission you allow sustains the affair.

posts: 209   ·   registered: Mar. 1st, 2021
id 8735367
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 2:35 AM on Sunday, May 15th, 2022

Great. Progress. You decide what you want and what you will accept and don't accept anything less from her , even if it's "hard" for her. It's a step towards getting out of infidelity with or without her.

If she wanted to make progress , she would. She is not entitled to all the time in the world to learn how to be a decent human being to her husband and family. Sure, someone as immature as her can't change overnight. But she isn't trying. She just isn't. She is using her energy to spin the narrative she wants because that's where she is comfortable. She is focusing all of her energy on maintaining her victim status and you are right to call her out and not stand for any of it.

So I’m trying to be fair. I don’t know that this is entirely true. She is certainly failing my standards, but it would be absurd to say she’s not trying at all. She is, and I see it. But she fucks up too and I lose it.

You all need to understand that I have been exceedingly hard on her. None of you know me personally, but trust me when I tell you that I can be relentless lol.

Today was relatively good—we spent the afternoon talking and no red flags emerged. It was productive.

She knows what I’m expecting from her—we’ll see how the next few days go.

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

posts: 304   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8735377
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Trdd ( member #65989) posted at 5:00 AM on Sunday, May 15th, 2022

Actually, some of us can see the relentless aspect. :)

Hang in there

posts: 573   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8735392
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clouds777 ( member #72442) posted at 11:40 AM on Sunday, May 15th, 2022

So I’m trying to be fair. I don’t know that this is entirely true. She is certainly failing my standards, but it would be absurd to say she’s not trying at all. She is, and I see it. But she fucks up too and I lose it.

I mean if you lower your standards, maybe. But I think you just want her to be trying. She can't even drop the anger towards you yet. She's not really trying except trying to get out of trouble.

posts: 221   ·   registered: Jan. 1st, 2020
id 8735413
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