Hi team. Somewhat inspired by Sigyn's own recent update elsewhere in the forum (our D-Day's were pretty close together), I thought I'd add some thoughts of my own to update you all on how it is all travelling. Plus selfishly, it will be cathartic.
D-Day2 was July last year, and 16 months on, I'm doing so much better. My relationship with my new partner is amazing, and she has been very, very patient with me as I've ridden this rollercoaster. Although she is younger (she's 36, I'm 44), she has embraced my daughters and taken me being a single Dad in her stride. She has an active interest in my interests, and genuinely cares what I'm into (and vice-versa). She offers to make their lunches, helps fold their clothes, and at no point has she shied away from the idea of being a potential step-Mum. I can't describe what it is like to have some of the mental load taken off my shoulders in regards to me having to think of everything all the time. I'm not saying their Mum doesn't do this by the way, for all her despicable behaviour, she is a great Mum; but leading up to her affair(s), it was me shouldering most of the burden while she was away on courses. Anyway.
I'm not going to lie though, last week was VERY tough for me, and I found myself in somewhat of a mental spiral. I remain very angry and disappointed at the way my ex-WW treated me, and I still mourn the loss of my best friend. Equally, I mourn the fact that I now see my daughter's 50% of the time. I want my kids with me, I want to share their life, I want cuddles from them everyday. To have lost this time with them on account of her wanting to screw two married co-workers continues to offend me deeply. I am dealing with it, but I shouldn't have to. I suspect I am preaching to the converted though.
Unfortunately, a day or so after the divorce was made final, my ex-WW ended up in hospital for a few weeks with a collapsed lung. Her mother came down to look after her, and I had a few interactions where I got the feeling that I was well and truly in the bad books. My ex-MIL refused to have a cup of tea when she dropped the girls around, and when I brought the girls in to the hospital to see their Mum, I was basically ignored outside of routine politeness. This was odd noting I got along very well with both of her parents. I suspect that they hadn't been given the full story about her current BF (AP2), and I also suspect that post-divorce I was getting rubbished to all and sundry about somehow magically 'screwing her over.'
On my therapist's recommendation, I sent her parents (my ex-in laws) an 8 page letter thanking them for accepting me into their family, but also outlining the FULL reasons for why the marriage imploded so quickly; basically, informing them that the reason I walked so quickly as owing to the fact that I had discovered AP2 in addition to her 1.5yr relationship with AP1. Also, contrary to what they had likely been told, she was sleeping with AP2 before I ever knew that the marriage was in trouble with Ap1 in the first place. They are very conservative (ex-FIL is a pastor), so I have no doubt they have been fed a 'oh we started dating well after Hurt and I broke up' narrative. I was more than happy to correct that. Needless to say, they didn't answer my letter, and neither did I really expect them to. But I am very disappointed and hurt that they didn't at least acknowledge it. Compounding this, my own mother contacted my exWW while she was in hospital to check she was ok. This is the same mother whose own life was ruined by my Dad's infidelity. If she can check on WW, surely her parents could have at least checked in on me, the innocent SIL who treated them with kindness? Whatever. Pretty telling in itself.
A rather interesting incident occurred when my ex-WW decided to show up at my house with AP2 in tow on Father's Day in September, to 'drop off some pictures the girls drew'. As context, I had told my ex NEVER to bring him around my house. I should also add that it was my week with the girls at the time, so I truly don't know what the apparently urgency was. As she stepped out of the car, we had just returned from Father's Day lunch with the girls. My gf was dressed to the nines, and was carrying one of my youngest out of the back seat as my ex pulled up. The look on her face said it all, there writ-large was the consequences of her behaviour. A younger beautiful woman helping her children out of the car with her ex-husband in front of the house she no longer owned. AP2 got out of the car but I flashed him a look of rage and he waited by the bonnet of her car. How quickly I went from calm to white-hot rage actually scared me, and I literally had no control of my body for a few seconds as every instinct railed at me to calmly walk over and knock him out at his temerity. I had to walk inside and recover my wits.
An interesting aside though, to the surprise of no one, AP2 looks like he isn't in for the long haul. One of my daughter's mentioned last week that he is being 'posted' overseas with the military for two years in the new year. Being an ex-military officer myself, there is no way he has a gun to his head saying he has to take that posting, and for all their rigidity, the military would never expect nor coerce a newly divorced member with a kid that would be left at home half a world away (not to mention in an apparently new burgeoning relationship) to take an overseas posting. That sort of posting would have a queue of people willing to take their place. Needless to say, there is no way two philandering waywards will 'wait' for each other, nor trust each other to wait exclusively, for two years. Can't say they weren't warned, but they utterly deserve it. I think deep down my ex-WW knows it too. She blew up a great marriage for an AP1 who dumped her, and an AP2 who looks like he is trying to now disengage. I have no doubt she will be on all the online dating apps within weeks. While I don't wish her any misfortunes, she truly deserves the life that's looming.
Anyway, not my circus, not my monkeys.
I can truly say that infidelity is the worst pain I have felt in my life, it hurts a magnitude more than close deaths in the family. And that's because a death in the family is generally a senseless incident, in the case of infidelity, the person you loved the most deliberately and willingly plotted to ruin your life, and in most cases, actively tried to convince you that they weren't while doing so. While I am stronger for it now, I truly wish I never had to be. My future is bright, I am financially secure, my partner supports and loves me, and my children are the light of my life. Time truly helps heal the wounds, but like an old injury, I will always carry this one. I'm on medication for PTSD, so deeply has this cut me, but I am getting better slowly but surely.
I'd like to thank you all again for your advice, it truly is a fantastic community.
[This message edited by Hurthalo at 4:30 AM, Tuesday, November 21st]