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

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PowerWithin ( new member #80349) posted at 4:40 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

I am a new poster on this forum. I’ve been a lurker for about a year, and have learned so many ways to regain my own power and sanity, and am so grateful for the collective wisdom here. I realize I can only read what you share, DrS, and interpret it through my own lens, so I could easily be biased and off-base. I was struck by the seeming similarities between the way you describe your wife’s responses and my husband’s responses, and what we eventually learned is that he was so hardwired to think like a victim, he truly did not know how to think differently. We have learned a lot together, and it became clear that his childhood strongly influences his current ability to connect with others. He was pro-self, survival focused all the way. Collaboration in an intimate relationship was a completely alien concept.

Right now, it sounds like your wife is feeling utterly rejected by the people she is most connected to. Some may think, It is understandable to reject her - look at what she has done! And I agree - what she did is absolute treason, and she must right her wrongs in order to ever be considered a safe partner. At the same time, if she is like my husband, desertion and rejection caused him to be completely and utterly disintegrated, and truly have no idea how to change or what to do. He was in survival mode, either in total freeze - defeated, overwhelmed, stuck, optionless, shut down, or total fight - defensive, complaining, vengeful, cruel, inconceivably immature, attacking. Thinking like a victim means lots of things, but primary is having an external locus of control. If this applies to her, she might rely exclusively on others to meet her emotional needs and to boost her self-worth. When others don’t do that, she self-protects to the nth…. scorched earth, like you said. She is protecting herself because that is what she knows - it was what she was raised to do, and how she survives. This is unconscious - it became part of her attachment system in childhood. Even now, it seems like her parents are reinforcing this same old pattern, by deserting her when she fails. Breaking connections as a means to punish. And they aren’t actually to blame for their own behavior - they are likely responding like that because they were raised the same way. Punishment alone doesn’t actually teach new behavior.

Anyway…. I am absolutely not discounting the horrendous crimes she committed against you and your relationship. If it is true that her brain does not currently possess the wiring needed to suddenly know how to make healthy connections, she will need support for rewiring her brain before she can make any real changes. I realize I can sound soft or like I have tried to nice my husband into R, but I had a therapist who helped me see the value in connection…. Without letting go of the debt he still owes to our relationship, I became aware of where he was really at, because his childhood was so damaging - he saw himself 100% as a victim, and he was flat out stuck there, with zero concept of how to conduct himself otherwise.

From what you’ve described, and through a psychobiological lens, I see what your wife is doing as she is trying, but she doesn’t know what to do. It’s like she has been exposed to a new alphabet, and is suddenly expected to be fluent in a foreign language.

Currently in R.
"The next time there’s no ground to stand on, don’t consider it an obstacle. Consider it a stroke of good luck." - Pema Chödrön

posts: 32   ·   registered: May. 25th, 2022   ·   location: Midwest
id 8738857
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nekonamida ( member #42956) posted at 5:05 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

Even now, it seems like her parents are reinforcing this same old pattern, by deserting her when she fails. Breaking connections as a means to punish. And they aren’t actually to blame for their own behavior - they are likely responding like that because they were raised the same way. Punishment alone doesn’t actually teach new behavior.

While I agree with most of this post, I don't see them abandoning her. They are taking a step back for their own sanity but they are still willing to talk. Still willing to see her in August. Dr's WW wants to cut them off and stop all communications with them.

Dr, was your WW's childhood traumatic? It's also possible that she has another undiagnosed condition which can causes a lack of empathy. Autism, personality disorder, bipolar, etc.

posts: 5138   ·   registered: Mar. 31st, 2014   ·   location: United States
id 8738861
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PowerWithin ( new member #80349) posted at 5:06 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

I just looked back through several of your posts, and there were lots of examples of your wife behaving in ways that seem to reveal her victim mentality. This response is not actually her fault, per se - it is an unconscious response that can only be addressed through awareness. She can’t change it until she becomes aware of its existence, accepts it for what it is, and then learns how to replace victim thinking with victor thinking.

Currently in R.
"The next time there’s no ground to stand on, don’t consider it an obstacle. Consider it a stroke of good luck." - Pema Chödrön

posts: 32   ·   registered: May. 25th, 2022   ·   location: Midwest
id 8738862
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PowerWithin ( new member #80349) posted at 5:28 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

While I agree with most of this post, I don't see them abandoning her. They are taking a step back for their own sanity but they are still willing to talk. Still willing to see her in August.

I agree - quite likely from their perspective, her parents are taking a break for their own reasons. From his wife’s perspective, though, she might only be able to feel the impact, and have zero comprehension of her parents’ intent. So she could be interpreting their behavior as purposely rejecting and abandoning her. It could feel to her like a very real attack on her attachment to them, which has not been presented as a secure child-parent attachment, which could give insight as to why she is now rejecting them. I realize my hypothesis is a direct reflection of my marriage, and might not apply to Mrs DrS at all. My husband interpreted any self-protective action I did as a threat - he assumed that I was intentionally punishing or rejecting him, so he would respond by initiating his own self-protective offense, and reject me. He was pro-self, not pro-relationship.

Edited for clarity.

[This message edited by PowerWithin at 5:53 PM, Monday, June 6th]

Currently in R.
"The next time there’s no ground to stand on, don’t consider it an obstacle. Consider it a stroke of good luck." - Pema Chödrön

posts: 32   ·   registered: May. 25th, 2022   ·   location: Midwest
id 8738869
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BraveSirRobin ( Guide #69242) posted at 5:58 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

I'm also looking to see how she handles the OBS discussion in therapy--I'm betting she's going to defend her position to try to recruit the MC to her side of the argument. Maybe I'm over-reacting, but I don't know that our marriage will survive if she does that.

The OBS propositioned you, right? From your first thread:

The OBS had reached out to me overnight, so I responded once it was time appropriate back in the US. It led to a nearly two hour text exchange; included in it was a proposition for "us to have our fun."

It took me by surprise and I diffused it, saying I’d likely end up feeling worse sinking to my WW’s level.

I understand why OBS would like to retaliate against your WW, especially since WW doubly betrayed her by pretending to be her friend. I also understand that you turned the OBS down. Nevertheless, I can see how a marriage counselor would agree with your WW that if you want to stay married, you shouldn't maintain a friendship with a woman who suggested you cheat together.

WW/BW

posts: 2736   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8738874
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 6:26 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

there were lots of examples of your wife behaving in ways that seem to reveal her victim mentality. This response is not actually her fault, per se - it is an unconscious response that can only be addressed through awareness.

This is a forum that doesn't believe in excusing or enabling the perpetrator. That's what you're doing with statements like this.

posts: 348   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8738882
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Jorge ( member #61424) posted at 6:26 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

- I'm beginning to wonder if your wife has the emotional/intellectual/caring capacity to understand and provide what you need. I believe it's a combination of these three things and if just one is missing, delivery can't occur.

- Should you divorce, you will be saddened, but self-assured you tried everything possible and more actually.

- Perhaps the only dynamic that hasn't yet played itself out yet is time. It's easily and sometimes conveniently forgotten that it often takes months and sometimes a couple of years for some WS to fully comprehend the damage caused and reach the remorseful state the BS has been waiting on.

In a "live" post like this one where up to the minute or hour postings are made, the snails pace of remorseful person can easily be dismissed. Your pain can't wait and neither can the pain we feel for you. But the reality is just like your recovery will be on your timetable, so too is the timetable for a WS to achieving authentic remorse. Sometimes a light just comes on and other times it's enabled by real consequences and losses.

Problem with this is it's never fast enough for the BS and the WS has no idea when or if the remorse will ever come. It's also possible you may have to risk losing the marriage for your wife to come to the point that will define the rest of her life. Both of you seek to avoid this at all costs, but it's possible therein lies the answer.

It takes quite a while and SI's search options limit one's ability to identify cases where the WS took many months or a year or more to achieve true remorse but the site does have them. Bottom line. It's easy to get lost in your own story, but it's possible your wife can't get to remorse until June of 2023 or earlier as opposed to June or July 2022. Just a thought.

[This message edited by Jorge at 6:28 PM, Monday, June 6th]

posts: 715   ·   registered: Nov. 14th, 2017   ·   location: Pennsylvania
id 8738883
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 6:56 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

Update.

So I'll respond to some posts below, but I thought I'd start with an update from the MC session. I got everything out that I needed to get out, including going far more in-depth on the conversation with my MIL in front of my wife--it was hurtful for her to hear obviously.

Her first reaction was shame and anger (toward her mom), but I explained why I felt her mom was so hurt: my wife apologized to her mom, but she never really explained what she was apologizing for because she never dug into the details of what she actually did. I suggested she should apologize again, but this time, with everything on the table, it will be contrite.

The MC said we need to make one major change, which echoes what she has been saying--and all of you have been saying: I need to *stop*.

I'm doing too much at the expense of healing my own trauma and it's ruining my chance at R (I think one of you may have said that verbatim on the last page...). She said my wife needs to sink or swim on her own right now--if she sinks, the marriage is over, but it has to be on her, not me. My wife needs to bear the full weight of the marriage and show me that she's all in and I need to back off so she can do that.

My concern, all along, is that my wife is not capable of doing that right now--maybe she'll surprise me though. But I recognize that me sprinting full speed into a brick wall every day isn't doing much good either. The MC said all I should do is be honest with me wife, nothing else. I should tell her how I feel all the time and never try to mask it to make her feel better, etc. And she said me doing nothing will be incredibly hard for me and my wife needs to recognize that.

My wife echoed all the points PowerWithin has made--she feels attacked from every direction and has a desire to be able to "win" at something. The MC pressed her as to why she needs to win and my wife immediately realized how stupid it sounded but she didn't know how to stop the cycle. She said she is going to put the marriage before herself moving forward and she recognizes that failure to do so will end the marriage--something she desperately doesn't want to happen.

Again, my wife's words are great and I have no doubt she meant them in the moment, but we'll see how far it gets us.

The MC also echoed what many of you are saying is that we're having too much sex. I suggested to the MC that we stop all together for now, but the MC didn't agree. She thought that sex could be beneficial to us forming the new relationship, but it needs to be under the right situation with both of us feeling positive about doing it. I need to let that marinate a bit I think, but ultimately I relate to her point: when we're both in good mindsets, the sex is helpful--when my wife is offering sex to make me feel better, it can *feel* manipulative and destructive to our relationship.

As for the vacation, we're going to do it. I can put on a brave face for my kids--who are young and needy, so I'll rarely have time for a wandering mind. Nights may be tough, but that's ok--they're tough at home too. I *think* I can do this, but I do appreciate all the support from those of you concerned for me.

Lastly, my wife was finally registered to post on the site today, so she'll likely be creating her own thread in the wayward forum with a stop sign. As I've mentioned, I think negativity will shut her down quickly, so I suggested a stop sign initially for her. We haven't figured out if we'll read each other's threads, but I imagine as long as some of you are reading both, things will get cross-contaminated anyway. My plan is still to post here honestly and transparently regardless.

what we eventually learned is that he was so hardwired to think like a victim

That's a quality in my wife I've been well aware of our entire marriage. She always feels like a victim and she has been constantly painting herself as a victim post-DDay. Dealing with it now is absolutely brutal.

Right now, it sounds like your wife is feeling utterly rejected by the people she is most connected to. Some may think, It is understandable to reject her - look at what she has done! And I agree - what she did is absolute treason, and she must right her wrongs in order to ever be considered a safe partner. At the same time, if she is like my husband, desertion and rejection caused him to be completely and utterly disintegrated, and truly have no idea how to change or what to do. He was in survival mode, either in total freeze - defeated, overwhelmed, stuck, optionless, shut down, or total fight - defensive, complaining, vengeful, cruel, inconceivably immature, attacking. Thinking like a victim means lots of things, but primary is having an external locus of control. If this applies to her, she might rely exclusively on others to meet her emotional needs and to boost her self-worth. When others don’t do that, she self-protects to the nth…. scorched earth, like you said. She is protecting herself because that is what she knows - it was what she was raised to do, and how she survives. This is unconscious - it became part of her attachment system in childhood.

That's all spot on. It's exactly what is happening.

I understand why OBS would like to retaliate against your WW, especially since WW doubly betrayed her by pretending to be her friend. I also understand that you turned the OBS down. Nevertheless, I can see how a marriage counselor would agree with your WW that if you want to stay married, you shouldn't maintain a friendship with a woman who suggested you cheat together.

That was the advice of the MC--if the priority is our marriage, I can't be "intimate" with a third party in talking about the affair or my current feelings. I think that's fair. I challenged myself to ask why I really reached out to OBS. I *think* it was because I felt so alone. I really wanted to know if she felt the same--I was looking to know what her life had been like the last several weeks as I felt like I could relate to her better than anyone.

What I should have done was walked into the other room and told my wife I had an urge to text OBS and then discussed that urge with her. So that's on me and I can do better.

My wife's blow up was still insane though and I need her to figure out less toxic ways of expressing her feelings (quickly). Her IC suggested she count to 12, but it's not enough--if she doesn't express her anger, she bottles it in as a grudge and resentment, so it's a lose-lose. She needs to figure out a way of compartmentalizing her issue so she can talk it through in IC or MC rather than blowing up at me or being passive aggressive with me. It's going to be a major challenge for her.

[This message edited by Drstrangelove at 7:08 PM, Monday, June 6th]

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 8738889
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 7:02 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

- I'm beginning to wonder if your wife has the emotional/intellectual/caring capacity to understand and provide what you need. I believe it's a combination of these three things and if just one is missing, delivery can't occur.

- Should you divorce, you will be saddened, but self-assured you tried everything possible and more actually.

- Perhaps the only dynamic that hasn't yet played itself out yet is time. It's easily and sometimes conveniently forgotten that it often takes months and sometimes a couple of years for some WS to fully comprehend the damage caused and reach the remorseful state the BS has been waiting on.

In a "live" post like this one where up to the minute or hour postings are made, the snails pace of remorseful person can easily be dismissed. Your pain can't wait and neither can the pain we feel for you. But the reality is just like your recovery will be on your timetable, so too is the timetable for a WS to achieving authentic remorse. Sometimes a light just comes on and other times it's enabled by real consequences and losses.

Problem with this is it's never fast enough for the BS and the WS has no idea when or if the remorse will ever come. It's also possible you may have to risk losing the marriage for your wife to come to the point that will define the rest of her life. Both of you seek to avoid this at all costs, but it's possible therein lies the answer.

It takes quite a while and SI's search options limit one's ability to identify cases where the WS took many months or a year or more to achieve true remorse but the site does have them. Bottom line. It's easy to get lost in your own story, but it's possible your wife can't get to remorse until June of 2023 or earlier as opposed to June or July 2022. Just a thought.

Painfully, I think you're right. The issue is time. She needs more time. My worst vice is a lack of patience, so it's a horrible combination. She doesn't think the threat of divorce is a bluff; in fact, I think she thinks it's so real that it's causing more unforced errors by her. She is so entirely overwhelmed by all the issues she's trying to deal with at once.

So if the answer is I need to back off and give her time, then I will have to try that. The issue for me is I feel like all she does with the time is make more mistakes--i.e. the longer she goes unremoreseful, the more likely we experience her final mistake that ends the marriage.

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 8738892
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Sharkman ( member #56818) posted at 7:12 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

This is a silly trick and will not help your overall problem but can help in some situations. When kids have tantrum it’s because their pre-frontal cortex is still not in gear. It starts popping into place when someone hits 18-25. What happens is without a fully formed PFC emotions rule their world. That’s why kids have tantrums and are otherwise emotional grenades. When a kid is having a tantrum you can ‘shock’ their logic centers into taking control back by forcing their brains into logic mode. I used to ask my kids what color a table was or how many cups were on the table. It didn’t have to be rocket science, just a signal for their brain to pass control back to the logic centers.

I think a lot of adults are stunted children. When they were kids they never were taught of developed how to hand control over to their logic centers. The main reason for this is shitty parents.

There isn’t anything you can fix but during one of her outbursts you can ask questions like how many hours it’s need since you guys had lunch or something similarly dumb, yet quantitative.

As for you, I think that your logic centers are kicked into over drive because you are trying to understand something that you will not be able to understand. It’s like trying to explain fire to early man. Go easy on yourself.

posts: 1780   ·   registered: Jan. 11th, 2017
id 8738893
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PowerWithin ( new member #80349) posted at 7:24 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

This is a forum that doesn't believe in excusing or enabling the perpetrator. That's what you're doing with statements like this.

Thank you for pointing that out. I was responding to what I interpreted as DrS being in despair, and hoped to provide information for his consideration. Please allow me to clarify: I am fascinated by human behavior, and the human brain. My intent is not to excuse or enable anyone’s actions. My husband has delved deep into his why’s and how’s, and I would guess every person’s introspective journey is unique. I have tried to portray my perspective as being just that - my perspective based on my experience. As I said, I am noting possible behavioral similarities between my husband and Mrs DrS. When I said her victim responses were not her fault, per se, you’re correct - I should have phrased it as a hypothesis. My intent was to provide context: If someone is operating from purely a victim stance, it can be difficult for that person to have awareness of operating that way, because s/he may not realize another way to operate actually exists. If my input is not welcome, then I offer my sincere apologies, and wish everyone the best.

Currently in R.
"The next time there’s no ground to stand on, don’t consider it an obstacle. Consider it a stroke of good luck." - Pema Chödrön

posts: 32   ·   registered: May. 25th, 2022   ·   location: Midwest
id 8738895
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 7:25 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

I'm doing too much at the expense of healing my own trauma and it's ruining my chance at R (I think one of you may have said that verbatim on the last page...). She said my wife needs to sink or swim on her own right now--if she sinks, the marriage is over, but it has to be on her, not me. My wife needs to bear the full weight of the marriage and show me that she's all in and I need to back off so she can do that.

This sums up the problem that many, many, many BS bring to the reconciliation (and marriage?) table. We give too much. Many of us always have. It is toxic to give too much because our partners sense on a daily basis that they do not need to give as much. So they simply don't.

Let's say that a great marriage = 100% work, and that 50% of marital work should come from each partner with the other 50% going to self, not marriage. Many BS neglect themselves and give, give, give to the marriage. When the marriage is feeling empty, their solution is to settle for less or give even more. That is doing TOO much work. It ends up to be 70% sacrifice and effort from BS and 30% sacrifice and effort from WS (often long before cheating even occurred). Not healthy.

And she said me doing nothing will be incredibly hard for me

Yep, most BS are trying to control the outcome (i.e. avoid D). But that is not on you. So can you get out of your own way? You need to let go of making this marriage work. Just let go. Find yourself again instead.

My concern, all along, is that my wife is not capable of doing that right now--maybe she'll surprise me though.

And HERE ^^^ is the most common SI problem in reconciliation (says me, lol). What is your plan when (not if) she does not give what she should or do the work? After all,this is not her area of strength, so expecting her to excel is foolish. She won't change overnight. If ever.

I do not blame anyone for staying in a less than perfect M. Mine is not perfect either. But just like there is a Cheater's Handbook, there seems to be a BS's Handbook as well. We tend to:

1. Do too much of the work. That's why we post on SI and have to beg our cheaters to do the same or beg them to read a book. We work on the M, they do not. Most of them never have.

2. Accept the WS ending the cheating and offering just SOME effort in the M just so we can avoid divorce. And then we call it R.

Guess I am wondering your minimum standard and time frame for these miraculous changes she is supposed to make? And how do you plan to rearrange your thinking to stop obsessing about this M and start living your OWN life? She is just a person, not your life. How will you learn to start taking care of you? There is strength and power in that.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 7:37 PM, Monday, June 6th]

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5555   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8738896
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OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 7:30 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

T/j

If my input is not welcome

Your input is welcome! You were not making excuses, just offering a possible explanation. Tom-ay-to, tom-ah-to. Semantics. Ignore the hate. That's what I do. laugh

End t/j

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5555   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8738897
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 7:33 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

If my input is not welcome, then I offer my sincere apologies, and wish everyone the best.

I can't speak for the forum, only myself. I believe in ideas: all of them. I'm open to everyone's thoughts and experiences--no individual here is an expert; it's a community of people with a painful shared experience. Everyone's journey to get here is his or her own.

Specifically to you, it's possible your posts save my marriage. Before I read them, I felt forced into D. Reading your view gave me another avenue to explore.

Granted, I may end up at D anyway and all your posts will have done is drag out my pain (lol), but that's ok, I won't blame you. :)

Please keep posting anytime you have something to share.

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 8738898
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 7:46 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

Guess I am wondering your minimum standard and time frame for these miraculous changes she is supposed to make?

I need to see remorse from her--which I define as her not becoming defensive and staking ground and her no longer lying to me to control an outcome. I feel that is a bear minimum. If she can't show me genuine contrition and stop ALL blame-shifting directly or indirectly tied to the affair, I can't attempt to R with her. To do that, she'll need to stop making herself the victim in her relationship with me (she should do it in all her relationships, but I only need to see the change in ours for me to try R).

I think that's a fair starting point. If she can demonstrate that she wants to prioritize our marriage and strive for a relationship that reflects an absence of those traits, I can then feel comfortable trying to achieve that relationship with her (and join her on the "coaster").

As for a timeframe, I have something in mind that I've shared in one of my threads already I think. If I view her in the same spot at that time, I'm going to pull the plug. However, I recognize that is a soft requirement. What is the "same spot" in this context? What if she's *slightly* better? Hopefully I can be honest with myself, but ultimately it will come down to if I feel comfortable committing to R once the time is up. If R still feels forced, as it would today, that will be the gut feeling I need to listen to and go with D.

And how do you plan to rearrange your thinking to stop obsessing about this M and start living your OWN life? How will you learn to start taking care of you?

No idea. That's the hard thing that I'm going to actively focus on starting now. I haven't been able to do it thus far--my hope, with the sting of DDay further in the past, I can give this a better shot. You all will have a front row seat to my success or failure at it and I have no doubt you'll all keep me honest.

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 8738900
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BluerThanBlue ( member #74855) posted at 8:10 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

<cough cough>

I'm doing too much at the expense of healing my own trauma and it's ruining my chance at R (I think one of you may have said that verbatim on the last page...).

<cough cough>

Ruining your chance at R?!

This is exactly the type of thinking that we-- and your MC, for that matter-- are trying to knock out of your head. Whether reconciliation succeeds or fails is contingent on your wife's actions (or lack thereof), not yours.

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: 781   ·   registered: Jul. 13th, 2020
id 8738903
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 8:15 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

Ignore the hate.

It isn't hate to point out that BS's shouldn't be pressured to take responsibility for fixing their WS. BS's get that message constantly from society: from the media, some MC's, the WS themselves. The message that it was the BS's fault, and that if the BS can improve and affair-proof the marriage, everything will improve. This is an abusive message to send BS's. Pointing that out is supportive to BS's. It isn't hateful.

posts: 348   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8738905
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PowerWithin ( new member #80349) posted at 8:18 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

My marriage would have definitely ended in D if I hadn’t found a different avenue. We all have different beliefs and ideas and strategies. My husband did a lot of work to explore his underlying motives, and we both believe that, in basic terms, he had very destructive patterns of both connecting with and dismissing people, and instead, he needed to (1) be accountable for righting his wrongs, and (2) commit himself to connecting with me in a healthy, supportive, collaborative, mature way. That’s our shared belief, which works for us, and I understand it may not apply to others because we are all different, and we all may have different goals for the type of relationship we decide to build with our partners.

Currently in R.
"The next time there’s no ground to stand on, don’t consider it an obstacle. Consider it a stroke of good luck." - Pema Chödrön

posts: 32   ·   registered: May. 25th, 2022   ·   location: Midwest
id 8738907
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 8:21 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

Ruining your chance at R?!

This is exactly the type of thinking that we-- and your MC, for that matter-- are trying to knock out of your head. Whether reconciliation succeeds or fails is contingent on your wife's actions (or lack thereof), not yours.

Hah! I was using the MC's framing, but point taken!

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 8738909
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 8:23 PM on Monday, June 6th, 2022

It isn't hate to point out that BS's shouldn't be pressured to take responsibility for fixing their WS. BS's get that message constantly from society: from the media, some MC's, the WS themselves. The message that it was the BS's fault, and that if the BS can improve and affair-proof the marriage, everything will improve. This is an abusive message to send BS's. Pointing that out is supportive to BS's. It isn't hateful.

To be clear, I wasn't siding with PowerWithin to be against you. I agree with your position entirely. I'm just open to all perspectives. :)

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 8738912
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