Cookies are required for login or registration. Please read and agree to our cookie policy to continue.

Newest Member: Arcangel

General :
My Wife Had an Intense, Highly Deceptive Affair, Part II

question

clouds777 ( member #72442) posted at 12:53 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

I kind of have no words for her behavior. It's really next level childish and selfish. I think k you're exactly right - she felt emboldened and validated by what her sister said because that's what she thinks too. She was pretty sure the pussy bombing would work and she is frustrated it isn't.

I do think you should separate. You think your children are protected from this stuff but they aren't. She had no intention of stopping her selfish games. She wants to hurt you and win, not heal or improve herself. You need to step off the crazy train and have space.

You need to stop worrying and offering things for the future. You should not have to have a relationship with her awful family as a concession yo saving this "marriage". Focus only on what you are doing to heal you and watch what she does to help you make your decision about r. That's it. Her family is awful and they aren't relevant to you right now. You don't owe them or her a relationship.

Maybe things will change but they aren't going to while you stay on this ride to crazy town with your wife.

[This message edited by clouds777 at 12:59 PM, Thursday, June 2nd]

posts: 271   ·   registered: Jan. 1st, 2020
id 8738200
default

Wiseoldfool ( member #78413) posted at 1:22 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Did either of you drink at or before dinner?

I've found, the hard way, that my wife and I have to separate alcohol from affair discussions. We did some significant damage having tipsy/drunk conversations that spiraled out of control.

What you're going through, the hot/cold, the roller coaster of stay/go, it's all normal.

As I've mentioned, my wife's affair was much, much longer than your wife's, but I did not have the excruciating discovery until she had reformed and become a model wife for five years (absent the ongoing concealment of her affair). I say that to tell you: I've been where you are, we are still married, it's mostly good and almost surely better than getting divorced. I've said this before, too: you don't have to decide anything right now, and my advice is do not decide anything right now unless at a visceral, primal level you know that you must.

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: 227   ·   registered: Mar. 1st, 2021
id 8738205
default

morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 1:25 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

I fell for how carefree and compassionate she is—I feel those are the two traits I wish I had more of and she gave me a great balance. I love her smile, her light touches, her displays of love and affection. I love seeing her interact with my children. I love spending time alone with her—there’s never any pressure, it just feels easy

She isn't compassionate. Having a raging affair while also minimizing your faithful and loving husband's sexual needs does not meet that definition. I wouldn't even call her forgiving, because she's still carrying grudges against you.

Carefree, well okay. See where choosing carefree got you? A wife who sexts her lover while sitting next to her husband, and tries to blame her husband for it.

She has charm and charisma, I'm sure. Narcissists often do. My ex did. He was much more popular than me and still is. It is incredibly frustrating how they command others' loyalty despite their behavior (witness her mother and sister, and even your own loyalty to her). But that's how charisma works.

Separate and go no contact with her, and your feelings for her will dissipate. As for your children, well, you don't want your children to internalize that she is an unchallenged moral figure to look up to, do you? That's the message that staying married and supportive of her sends to them. Even if they don't know about the infidelity now, you know that her patterns of selfish behavior will continue as they grow up, and they'll witness and internalize your acceptance of it. You don't want them thinking that's the norm. You don't need to ever criticize her to them (and shouldn't). The fact of your divorce will be message enough.

posts: 348   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8738206
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 2:30 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

I kind of have no words for her behavior. It's really next level childish and selfish. I think k you're exactly right - she felt emboldened and validated by what her sister said because that's what she thinks too. She was pretty sure the pussy bombing would work and she is frustrated it isn't.

I do think you should separate. You think your children are protected from this stuff but they aren't. She had no intention of stopping her selfish games. She wants to hurt you and win, not heal or improve herself. You need to step off the crazy train and have space.

You need to stop worrying and offering things for the future. You should not have to have a relationship with her awful family as a concession yo saving this "marriage". Focus only on what you are doing to heal you and watch what she does to help you make your decision about r. That's it. Her family is awful and they aren't relevant to you right now. You don't owe them or her a relationship.

Maybe things will change but they aren't going to while you stay on this ride to crazy town with your wife.

It seems to me that she spent a significant amount of time, especially recently, building me up to be a monster. So now that she has undertaken a monstrous act, she is angry that she has to shoulder all the blame--meaning if we did CT before her affair, she'd have been attacking me the entire time. So now she feels like she's not being allowed to do that and it's unfair to her. She can't grasp the idea that the monster she sees in me is her own creation. And further, she can't understand how she is responsible for her own unhappiness.

She can say all these things to me--and she can nod along when a therapist says them to her--but she doesn't really believe them.

It has her caught in this strange scenario where she desperately wants to save the marriage but refuses to take all the blame for destroying it--so she goes back and forth, looking for even the tiniest bit of ground to stake for her own. Perhaps it's an attempt to save face.

As for her family, I decided to text her sister--if she's amenable to talking with me, it could prove useful. It's clear she doesn't have the scope of what's going on and it's obviously painfully hard for my wife to get into the specifics. Even if it just mitigates these incoming bombs, it'll be useful.

[This message edited by Drstrangelove at 2:39 PM, Thursday, June 2nd]

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738213
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 2:37 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Did either of you drink at or before dinner?

I've found, the hard way, that my wife and I have to separate alcohol from affair discussions. We did some significant damage having tipsy/drunk conversations that spiraled out of control.

What you're going through, the hot/cold, the roller coaster of stay/go, it's all normal.

As I've mentioned, my wife's affair was much, much longer than your wife's, but I did not have the excruciating discovery until she had reformed and become a model wife for five years (absent the ongoing concealment of her affair). I say that to tell you: I've been where you are, we are still married, it's mostly good and almost surely better than getting divorced. I've said this before, too: you don't have to decide anything right now, and my advice is do not decide anything right now unless at a visceral, primal level you know that you must.

Per usual, your comments match your user handle. She had a cocktail and two glasses of wine last night--and I didn't even recognize it until I read your post. Of course that contributed to the issue. Fuck it's so frustrating to be her babysitter. Things like alcohol and money have zero influence on my behavior and it's difficult for me to always remember they're both crippling to hers.

And yes, I keep reminding myself that I don't have to do anything, but as I've expressed, I hate this inaction--the limo I'm in waiting to see some clarity. We're supposed to take a family vacation on Tuesday and I'm wondering if that's unwise. The hot and cold nature to it all, with the current overwhelming negativity, makes it hard to plan a normal life around this mess.

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738214
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 2:47 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

She isn't compassionate. Having a raging affair while also minimizing your faithful and loving husband's sexual needs does not meet that definition. I wouldn't even call her forgiving, because she's still carrying grudges against you.

Carefree, well okay. See where choosing carefree got you? A wife who sexts her lover while sitting next to her husband, and tries to blame her husband for it.

She has charm and charisma, I'm sure. Narcissists often do. My ex did. He was much more popular than me and still is. It is incredibly frustrating how they command others' loyalty despite their behavior (witness her mother and sister, and even your own loyalty to her). But that's how charisma works.

Separate and go no contact with her, and your feelings for her will dissipate. As for your children, well, you don't want your children to internalize that she is an unchallenged moral figure to look up to, do you? That's the message that staying married and supportive of her sends to them. Even if they don't know about the infidelity now, you know that her patterns of selfish behavior will continue as they grow up, and they'll witness and internalize your acceptance of it. You don't want them thinking that's the norm. You don't need to ever criticize her to them (and shouldn't). The fact of your divorce will be message enough.

It's strange, I know my feelings for her will dissipate. That terrifies me. It's frightening to think I just won't love her at any more--I'll leave the relationship only seeing the bad in her--as you do. The humor of the situation isn't lost on me: you see all the bad because that's what I see now, so that's what I'm showing you--it's similar to her family seeing all the bad in me because that's all she showed them.

I think @wiseoldfool is probably right that I still don't *need* to do anything right now. I had promised to give this more time and we're only 2.5 months in. I just see the spiral and I've lost all faith in her waking up to the reality of her behavior.

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738215
default

grubs ( member #77165) posted at 3:36 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Waywards only get something out of this site if they are willing to do the hard work. From all signs, she's not ready for that yet if she will every be. I wouldn't have high expectations for Mrs DrS on here.

Yesterday began with a CT session that was very hard on my wife. I was very critical of my wife’s behavior during the marriage and the CT echoed them to her as problematic. We spent a good deal of time talking about her secretive spending, and again, the CT was very hard on her. The session more or less cast her as a child and me sick of parenting her.

I'm kind of confused why the CT allowed this session to go the way it did. God knows you don't need any additional failings of your WW to work through right now. I would have thought after the last session poking at your WW defensiveness and how to more constructively deal with conflict as a couple would have been a better use of the time. At some point you need to stop just tearing her down and give her some postives. Kind of the compliment sandwich of management world. She spent a few decades with her broken coping skills that aren't going to be corrected in a few sessions.

We give those CT that shift blame to the BS a lot of grief, but your's seems to be too far the other way. Any therapist should be working with their patients to think through their issues so that the patient themselves work towards an answer. I would have expected your CT to validate your feelings and viewpoints while avoiding labeling them as fact and shift to get your WW perspective . It seems your CT is more turning your viewpoints to facts and castigating your WW which is counterproductive at this point in time. Your WW doesn't need CT to join in on parenting her. She needs the CT, in conjunction with her IC, to help shift her thought processes and views to be more that of an healthy adult. That's a slow shift also. Not a proclamation, wave the wand, and boom it's fixed. CT definitively shouldn't place themselves in the judge role which appears to be what yours has done. Again this is from reading your words so It might not be as bad as it reads. That might be something to keep in mind going forward.

We already know that your WW has a lot of growing up to do if your R is going to succeed. We know that her family at times has acted like a out of control positive feedback loop to your WW. I would discuss that with her and ask how she plans to account for that. She does need friendly support but also form those that will hold her accountable. If this is going to work out you both need to figure out how to lean in to each other. I think your WW is fixated on that you are going to D. If asked and she was honest she would certainly agree that if the tables had been reversed she would have already filed. She needs to step up and do the work regardless of that. It may be time to scale back on the D talk or at least stress that you are still here doing your part. She needs to have hope that she can fix this.

[This message edited by grubs at 3:37 PM, Thursday, June 2nd]

posts: 1204   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2021
id 8738216
default

sisoon ( Moderator #31240) posted at 3:37 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

** Posting as a human being with a lot of experience **

You say your CT session included the idea that you're sick of parenting your W.

Then you demonstrate that you're still trying to parent and control her.

I have little doubt that you've taken on the parent role in your M. I have little doubt that you try to control your W. I have little doubt that the 2 of you have cooperated to establish and maintain that dynamic.

What are you willing to do to change yourself?

You can't R without changing yourself. You won't be able to establish a full relationship with anyone unless you change yourself - D won't save you. You probably won't even be able to heal from this trauma without giving up your attempts to control outcomes.

JMO, of course.

*****

Look, I know that d-day makes one question so very much about one's life. I know it attacks one's self-esteem, one's sense of manhood/womanhood, and one's sense of what makes a good life. You'll recover best if you build your self-esteem and sense of being a human being, but that's only part of your healing work.

You also need to look at yourself, figure out what illusions you maintain about life, give them up, and build new ideas about life that are closer to reality.

The best way to heal is to get real, and the realer you are, the more you can recover.

I think you're selling yourself out in order to maintain your sense of being in control.

*****

I think you've filtered everything you've related about your W through your control/parent lens, so I have little sense that I know much about your Wife, despite all the words you've typed about her.

I have no idea whether you should R, S, or D.

My bet, however, is that your best hope for healing lies in giving up trying to control the outcome and getting real. Do those things, and you'll answer the D/S/R questions for yourself.

JMO, but I have a lot of experience....

*****

*****

Here's an exercise for you: instead of typing long posts, say what you want to say so a 6 year old would understand. Keeping it simple does a whole lot to sharpen one's mind and get to the core idea that you want and need to deal with.

*****

You may think this post has a number of 2 X 4 elements in it, and that may be correct, though I'm not certain. I have thought very hard about posting this, and I have decided it's better posted than discarded.

[This message edited by SI Staff at 3:38 PM, Thursday, June 2nd]

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: 27290   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8738217
default

farsidejunky ( member #49392) posted at 4:28 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Dr. S:

I think you need to read, then reread Sisoon's last post, until it sinks in.

Sometimes the best thing you can do is let go of the wheel.

“Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option.”

-Maya Angelou

posts: 606   ·   registered: Aug. 30th, 2015   ·   location: Tennessee
id 8738224
default

Jorge ( member #61424) posted at 5:02 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

I have to be honest, divorce still didn’t feel real in that moment and she immediately apologized and backtracked on saying it (of course, in her defensiveness pointing out that I said it first—she is such a child it hurts my brain).


It's possible divorce not being real is where the bottleneck exists. I'm not condoning divorce, but if it's not viewed as a potential result or solution, discussions start to move circular.

I recall years ago after a failed business venture, I could not pay my mortgage and fought off foreclosure for years because I couldn't catch up. I could not fathom losing a home. The mere thought of it was frightening, embarrassing, etc. At some point I think I just subconsciously realized it was a fight I could not win. Then I asked myself, how am I defining winning? Is it just saving my home at all costs or is foreclosure actually a necessary component of winning.

I halfway chose the latter and the results were immediate. I wasted some years trying to uphold the status quo, but realized I was withholding me and my family. I don't regret the experience, but I regret not having the insight to see what I now see. Solutions were right in front of me, yet I was unwilling to move towards them because I defined "winning" as saving the house at all costs.

Lastly, I recall a few successful re-marriages after divorce, so separation and divorce doesn't necessarily mean the end forever. It just means this book has ended and another may or may not be restarted. I think if you were to divorce, some of the issues that greatly disturb you will soften and possibly be tolerable simply because of the divorce.

My concern however is I think you would have to accept the fact your wife may not have the resiliency, conviction and will to sort through the issues you're currently going through and choose the easy out. Growing comfortable or accepting of this would be a considerable achievement for you. The divorce option is not easy.

My mom passed recently and she often discussed preparing for death. My brother didn't want to hear it, but I knew it was necessary as the oldest sibling to engage it fully in order to facilitate the business of the end of life. It's hard, but there comes a time when it's unavoidable.

I think you kind of a know all of this already, but you have down a remarkable job investigating any and all marital hurdles that many don't wish to dive into. Your wife is trying, but she's greatly fatigued, but not so fatigued where she's giving up.

posts: 715   ·   registered: Nov. 14th, 2017   ·   location: Pennsylvania
id 8738227
default

truthsetmefree ( member #7168) posted at 5:05 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Sometimes the best thing you can do is let go of the wheel.

^^^^

DrS - It seems like maybe this is your lesson in vulnerability? Maybe facing your fears about the unknown future? Facing fears about maybe not being able to control as much as you once thought?

As I’ve said before, this experience is about so much more than just your wife or your marriage.

[This message edited by truthsetmefree at 5:07 PM, Thursday, June 2nd]

Hope has two beautiful daughters; their names are Anger and Courage. Anger at the way things are, and Courage to see that they do not remain as they are. ~ Augustine of Hippo

posts: 8844   ·   registered: May. 18th, 2005
id 8738228
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 5:17 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

I'm kind of confused why the CT allowed this session to go the way it did. God knows you don't need any additional failings of your WW to work through right now. I would have thought after the last session poking at your WW defensiveness and how to more constructively deal with conflict as a couple would have been a better use of the time. At some point you need to stop just tearing her down and give her some postives. Kind of the compliment sandwich of management world. She spent a few decades with her broken coping skills that aren't going to be corrected in a few sessions.

We give those CT that shift blame to the BS a lot of grief, but your's seems to be too far the other way. Any therapist should be working with their patients to think through their issues so that the patient themselves work towards an answer. I would have expected your CT to validate your feelings and viewpoints while avoiding labeling them as fact and shift to get your WW perspective . It seems your CT is more turning your viewpoints to facts and castigating your WW which is counterproductive at this point in time. Your WW doesn't need CT to join in on parenting her. She needs the CT, in conjunction with her IC, to help shift her thought processes and views to be more that of an healthy adult. That's a slow shift also. Not a proclamation, wave the wand, and boom it's fixed. CT definitively shouldn't place themselves in the judge role which appears to be what yours has done. Again this is from reading your words so It might not be as bad as it reads. That might be something to keep in mind going forward.

We already know that your WW has a lot of growing up to do if your R is going to succeed. We know that her family at times has acted like a out of control positive feedback loop to your WW. I would discuss that with her and ask how she plans to account for that. She does need friendly support but also form those that will hold her accountable. If this is going to work out you both need to figure out how to lean in to each other. I think your WW is fixated on that you are going to D. If asked and she was honest she would certainly agree that if the tables had been reversed she would have already filed. She needs to step up and do the work regardless of that. It may be time to scale back on the D talk or at least stress that you are still here doing your part. She needs to have hope that she can fix this.

I'll use the last CT session as an example.

I'll discuss an issue--like the lie she told about wanting to meet her exbf in 2009, noting that it's emblematic of how freely she lies to me.

The CT asks my WW if what I'm saying is fair. My wife says it is. The CT will then dig down into why she feels a need to lie to me so much (to avoid conflict, etc.).

We discussed the thousands of dollars of debt my WW racked up and the rampant spending. CT will ask my wife if that's true and if my assessment is fair. My wife will agree. CT will then dig into why my wife feels a need to spend and then keep it from me (impulsive behavior, etc.).

Then the session ends and it was mostly spent digging into two of my wife's negative traits (lying and frivolous spending). So my wife leaves feeling like a POS. On one-hand, I feel bad for her, because it's rough to see her dealing with that for 60 minutes, but on the other-hand I wonder if it's needed for her to get the message. Every time I think she gets it, events like last night happen and I feel like we're still in this "identifying problems" phase.

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738229
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 5:30 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

You say your CT session included the idea that you're sick of parenting your W.

Then you demonstrate that you're still trying to parent and control her.

I have little doubt that you've taken on the parent role in your M. I have little doubt that you try to control your W. I have little doubt that the 2 of you have cooperated to establish and maintain that dynamic.

What are you willing to do to change yourself?

You can't R without changing yourself. You won't be able to establish a full relationship with anyone unless you change yourself - D won't save you. You probably won't even be able to heal from this trauma without giving up your attempts to control outcomes.

JMO, of course.

She has to act *appropriately* without my guidance. Spending is the big "parenting" example. With or without my oversight, she spends like a drunken sailor behind my back. Her solution to that is offering to be parented--having me sign off on purchases and review her monthly spending. I do not want to do that.

Last night she had three alcoholic drinks and almost spiraled us to divorce (she may have actually done that). I didn't even notice. She showed up in a negative frame of mind and chose to have three drinks. I did not offer my guidance--I do not want to offer my guidance.

We can review countless examples--I'm often actively trying to not control her.

Separate from control, there are aspects that I do need to change about myself. I need to be more engaged as a husband and father. It's easy for me to want to be left alone at times (I often like being alone and I need to manage that better).

I also need to let more go--I am overly critical of everyone and everything, especially myself. I need to be less of a perfectionist with her as she's sensitive to it and I hurt her feelings rather than help her.

I think you've filtered everything you've related about your W through your control/parent lens, so I have little sense that I know much about your Wife, despite all the words you've typed about her.

I have no idea whether you should R, S, or D.

My bet, however, is that your best hope for healing lies in giving up trying to control the outcome and getting real. Do those things, and you'll answer the D/S/R questions for yourself.

JMO, but I have a lot of experience....

I don't understand--I *am* in control of the outcome. I have to decide if I want to attempt R with my wife or not. She does want to R, so absence of a decision, I would be in R (or stay in this limbo, which is what I'm currently doing).

Here's an exercise for you: instead of typing long posts, say what you want to say so a 6 year old would understand. Keeping it simple does a whole lot to sharpen one's mind and get to the core idea that you want and need to deal with.

If I write a long post, it's because I think it's important context (it very often may not be). If I wrote about last night: "My wife said a stupid thing, then doubled down on it and I suggested we separate--what do you guys think about that?" It would be hard to value any advice I received in response.

You may think this post has a number of 2 X 4 elements in it, and that may be correct, though I'm not certain. I have thought very hard about posting this, and I have decided it's better posted than discarded.

I don't think it's harsh at all--don't worry about hurting my feelings!

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738231
default

annb ( member #22386) posted at 5:32 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Sometimes the best thing you can do is let go of the wheel.

^^^Bingo.

Read sisoon's post again. You cannot micromanage the aftermath of infidelity. It hasn't even been three? months yet, honestly I think your expectations of your wife (deservedly so) are too high. It's going to take time, lots of it.


you don't have to decide anything right now, and my advice is do not decide anything right now unless at a visceral, primal level you know that you must.

^^Spot on as well.

posts: 11541   ·   registered: Jan. 10th, 2009   ·   location: Northeast
id 8738233
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 5:42 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

It's possible divorce not being real is where the bottleneck exists. I'm not condoning divorce, but if it's not viewed as a potential result or solution, discussions start to move circular.

I recall years ago after a failed business venture, I could not pay my mortgage and fought off foreclosure for years because I couldn't catch up. I could not fathom losing a home. The mere thought of it was frightening, embarrassing, etc. At some point I think I just subconsciously realized it was a fight I could not win. Then I asked myself, how am I defining winning? Is it just saving my home at all costs or is foreclosure actually a necessary component of winning.

I halfway chose the latter and the results were immediate. I wasted some years trying to uphold the status quo, but realized I was withholding me and my family. I don't regret the experience, but I regret not having the insight to see what I now see. Solutions were right in front of me, yet I was unwilling to move towards them because I defined "winning" as saving the house at all costs.

Lastly, I recall a few successful re-marriages after divorce, so separation and divorce doesn't necessarily mean the end forever. It just means this book has ended and another may or may not be restarted. I think if you were to divorce, some of the issues that greatly disturb you will soften and possibly be tolerable simply because of the divorce.

My concern however is I think you would have to accept the fact your wife may not have the resiliency, conviction and will to sort through the issues you're currently going through and choose the easy out. Growing comfortable or accepting of this would be a considerable achievement for you. The divorce option is not easy.

My mom passed recently and she often discussed preparing for death. My brother didn't want to hear it, but I knew it was necessary as the oldest sibling to engage it fully in order to facilitate the business of the end of life. It's hard, but there comes a time when it's unavoidable.

I think you kind of a know all of this already, but you have down a remarkable job investigating any and all marital hurdles that many don't wish to dive into. Your wife is trying, but she's greatly fatigued, but not so fatigued where she's giving up.

I think divorce didn't seem real because I wasn't fully committed to it when I said it--maybe I just wanted to hear what it would sound like? And on her end, when she said it (what you quoted), it didn't feel real at all because I knew she didn't mean it.

I don't have much faith in separating and re-connecting--I feel the likelihood of one of us finding someone else with the other holding out hope for reconciliation would be too cruel. I like the idea of exiting with permanence in mind--though admittedly anything could happen.

I do think there's something to the idea of just burying everything from the old relationship, including the affair. So just take all the old anger and resentments and throw them away.

Can I do that now? I don't know, but I love the idea of being able to do that. I feel like if we could do that, it would eliminate so much of our conflict--she'd have no reason to be defensive and I'd have no reason to be crying about what she did. But I also recognize that it'd be giving her a pass--forgiving her too easily while she still carries all these false justifications just feeds the idea that she's right in her thinking. I think I need to believe that she understands how all her justifications were bull shit and she shows remorse before I can let go and forgive the affair.

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738234
default

clouds777 ( member #72442) posted at 6:11 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

I think I need to believe that she understands how all her justifications were bull shit and she shows remorse before I can let go and forgive the affair.

Not to beat a dead horse here, but you do know she doesn't understand this at all? Like, not even a teeny tiny bit. She doubled down on it just yesterday. If you went along with it, she would be beating you over the head with everything you have done wrong. She only backs down because you fight back.

She very much sees herself as the victim here and it seems that she is going to fight like hell to hold on to that idea. I think some wayward spouses that have chimed in have mentioned this - it is all about her and her relationship with herself. It really feels like she would rather hang on to her status as a victim and her warped view of herself than hang on to the marriage.

posts: 271   ·   registered: Jan. 1st, 2020
id 8738238
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 6:18 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Not to beat a dead horse here, but you do know she doesn't understand this at all? Like, not even a teeny tiny bit.

That certainly seems to be the case. I kept beating that dead horse with her earlier today. Believe it or not, she told me she understood now! So maybe this time? lol.

I'm a fan of Jordan Peterson (though I suspect that may polarize some people), but he has great advice on marriage: you both need to commit to never agreeing to something you don't agree with. It speaks to me because that's all my wife does: she agrees to something outwardly, but disagrees in her mind, spends days, months thinking about it and then comes back to me to tell me how unhappy she is about the thing she previously agreed with.

It's maddening because there's never any truth. Nothing we discuss is ever resolved.

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738239
default

faithfulman ( member #66002) posted at 6:38 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

but also the recent lie reveal about the silly exbf non-incident in 2009

Is this really a non-incident? The thing is, while she told you about a slice of it, there must be more.

First off, agreeing to meet her ex-boyfriend in secret is a pretty serious step toward, if not an actual act of infidelity in and of itself. (I feel it is an act of infidelity)

Remember how upset your wife got at the idea of you meeting or having any contact with the sleazy-cop's wife?

But to her, whatever she does is not a big deal. This hypocrisy is a hallmark of cheaters. Everything is okay and doesn't hurt anyone when they are lying and cheating. But if you have a friendly conversation with a woman, or worse, she thinks you are cute it's a problem, something along those lines.

***

Second off, the "meet the ex" non-incident is actually more than one incident. It doesn't happen on one day. There has to be some kind of pre-amble, build-up, something to get her to the point of setting up a date (and it was a date Dr. S) and making the move toward hidden, inappropriate encounters, then behaviors which move toward full-on cheating.

And she had no problem whatsoever keeping that a secret from you the rest of her days. in fact, it probably never crossed her mind after she decided to come home - if that is indeed what happened. I would not take anything she says at face value.

***

Further, Going from 0 to parking lot sex and handcuffed anal doesn't just 'happen'. For most people, there is a build up of betrayals to make this something she can do. And I don't mean just with the shitty AP. I mean she has probably been behaving inappropriately in an escalating manner for a long time - maybe since or before 2009!

I've noticed that you seem convinced that her cheating was isolated. Now you know for sure that at least the propensity has been there for over 10 years.

It's up to you what you decide to do with that. Some people are just disloyal liars and hypocrites. I know the therapy set is always looking for whys and becauses, and there could be those underlying reasons.

But I am more concerned by "what is". I think that should be primary over why.

To me your wife is an incredibly immature, lying-like-she-breathes hypocrite who will do ANYTHING to make herself feel better in the moment, and rationalize it away if she even cares enough to.

Evidence would suggest this is the case.

[This message edited by faithfulman at 6:38 PM, Thursday, June 2nd]

posts: 924   ·   registered: Aug. 28th, 2018
id 8738242
default

morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 6:43 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

It's frightening to think I just won't love her at any more--I'll leave the relationship only seeing the bad in her--as you do.

I didn't say there is no good in her. I said she is not compassionate, at least not towards you, which is what matters to your marriage.

I said I'm sure she's charming and charismatic, and that's what draws people to her and inspires their loyalty. I'm sure she can be very nice to other people who don't challenge her- that's very common for a narcissist. My cheater ex is a huge dog lover and very good with them. We're actually still friendly because the betrayal removed my love for him before I even moved out, so in this case no contact wasn't necessary, and because he has our three dogs and I love them, I made peace with him to have regular access to them.

So it's not like I'm blinded to the good in him. I am also not blinded to the fact that he is a completely unsuitable partner who betrayed me, gaslighted me, etc. That's just what I think would help for you to realize about your wife. It's clear from your descriptions that she's not a good wife and never will be. You'd be selling yourself short by staying with her and dealing with all of the emotional contortions that would require after her betrayal.

[This message edited by morningglory at 7:14 PM, Thursday, June 2nd]

posts: 348   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8738243
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 7:12 PM on Thursday, June 2nd, 2022

Is this really a non-incident? The thing is, while she told you about a slice of it, there must be more.

First off, agreeing to meet her ex-boyfriend in secret is a pretty serious step toward, if not an actual act of infidelity in and of itself. (I feel it is an act of infidelity)

Remember how upset your wife got at the idea of you meeting or having any contact with the sleazy-cop's wife?

But to her, whatever she does is not a big deal. This hypocrisy is a hallmark of cheaters. Everything is okay and doesn't hurt anyone when they are lying and cheating. But if you have a friendly conversation with a woman, or worse, she thinks you are cute it's a problem, something along those lines.

***

Second off, the "meet the ex" non-incident is actually more than one incident. It doesn't happen on one day. There has to be some kind of pre-amble, build-up, something to get her to the point of setting up a date (and it was a date Dr. S) and making the move toward hidden, inappropriate encounters, then behaviors which move toward full-on cheating.

And she had no problem whatsoever keeping that a secret from you the rest of her days. in fact, it probably never crossed her mind after she decided to come home - if that is indeed what happened. I would not take anything she says at face value.

***

Further, Going from 0 to parking lot sex and handcuffed anal doesn't just 'happen'. For most people, there is a build up of betrayals to make this something she can do. And I don't mean just with the shitty AP. I mean she has probably been behaving inappropriately in an escalating manner for a long time - maybe since or before 2009!

I've noticed that you seem convinced that her cheating was isolated. Now you know for sure that at least the propensity has been there for over 10 years.

It's up to you what you decide to do with that. Some people are just disloyal liars and hypocrites. I know the therapy set is always looking for whys and becauses, and there could be those underlying reasons.

But I am more concerned by "what is". I think that should be primary over why.

The incident was her meeting a few old high school friends, with her exbf there. Was she planning on fucking him? I have no idea, but she certainly put a lie in place to make it possible. She ended up not attending, which is the right call, but her establishing the alibi is a major issue for me--I meant more that the incident was a non-issue (as she didn't go), but her lying about it is still a major issue.

As for her build up, I'm not sure. She now has had two IC's who have told her she has a major issue with impulsive behavior. So perhaps it's not a the jump to what she did that's shocking, but instead whether or not she jumped before. Again though, I have high confidence that if she cheated in our marriage (last 10 years), it would have come up in the various text messages with her mom. I don't have confidence in anything she says about the early days of our relationship when she conceivably could have done it and justified it as not cheating or some crazy shit.

To me your wife is an incredibly immature, lying-like-she-breathes hypocrite who will do ANYTHING to make herself feel better in the moment, and rationalize it away if she even cares enough to.

Evidence would suggest this is the case.

I think that's fair unfortunately. It's crazy that I still want to make this work, isn't it?

Me: BH, 38 (37 at time of A)
Her: WW, 38 (37 at time of A)
A: 9/21 - 3/22 (3 month EA; 3 month PA)
DDay: March 15, 2022
Status: Limbo

posts: 607   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8738247
Cookies on SurvivingInfidelity.com®

SurvivingInfidelity.com® uses cookies to enhance your visit to our website. This is a requirement for participants to login, post and use other features. Visitors may opt out, but the website will be less functional for you.

v.1.001.20220428 2002-2022 SurvivingInfidelity.com® All Rights Reserved. • Privacy Policy