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

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Jameson1977 ( member #54177) posted at 1:40 AM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

Dr., the councillor sounds good, the fact she didn’t allow your WW to steer the discussion is positive. My WW was good at manipulating one of our MC’s but it absolutely didn’t work with my WW’s last IC, I really liked her. She was kind but firm, she empathized but was direct when getting my WW to really do the work she needed to do.

The sex thing was interesting to read, as this is something that has come up recently. My WW did things with her AP she didn’t necessarily want to do, but she admits she did them because she wanted to please him barf She truly degraded herself, I won’t get into details, but he did things to her (with her 100% permission) that I wouldn’t ever want or ask of her, and feel no man should ever ask a partner for. I just didn’t get it. She did say she enjoyed the "power" she had in that "relationship", even though it was basically one sided, he didn’t have to work much at all to get my WW to do anything he wanted.

We recently watched a Netflix series and sexual assault was the main theme. After we finished it, I asked her about women’s feelings on sexual assault and why some women have rape fantasies or want this type of roleplay. This series was well done and made it uncomfortable to watch these women being abused and how it can completely change your life.

My WW said, for her, it would be about control. She also said something else about women who experience sexual assault. Some assault victims have a promiscuous phase after the assault. It’s a way to regain some sort of control.

The way you describe her nitpicking after sex (pre dday) would be demoralizing. And no doubt you are confused, she contradicts herself in what she wants from you. It must be maddening?!?

I know my WW had sex with me (post dday) to try to please me, use it as a means to make me happy, even for just a short time. She and I enjoyed it, but I knew it was a result of her guilt.

Probably TMI, but, my WW have filmed each other over the years doing a number of things. I recently had a look at them. They span probably 4-5 years, including during her A.

What I noticed was how outwardly enthusiastic she is now vs when these vids were recorded. The body language is different, just something about how she and I interacted. I suspect that this again is a result of guilt. It feels a little like pity sex to me and that isn’t at all what I want. My WW of course says that’s not the case, she feels closer to me, etc. I don’t believe it. It’s something that’s on my mind more frequently lately.

The sex dynamic post dday was and is still a very difficult issue and for me anyway, hasn’t been resolved.

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truthsetmefree ( member #7168) posted at 5:02 AM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

DrS - How do you define intimacy? And do you believe that sex can occur without intimacy?

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: 8919   ·   registered: May. 18th, 2005
id 8737585
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 11:45 AM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

Dr. S, if your wife requested that another man handcuff her then ASKED him to fuck her in the ass, it's because she wanted his dick in her ass.

You and I are on the same page here and this was central to the discussion last night—I’m tired of her bull shit rewriting history.

She genuinely seems confused about all of it—she’s reframing it as now she looks back and feels like a whore, but in the moment she clearly wanted it. She doesn’t understand how to square all of that in her head.

Essentially, the shame she feels is making her think she needs to throw all her kinky sexual fantasies away—meaning, rather than take the blame for having sex with another man, she’s placing the blame on the type of sex she had—she’s saying that me handcuffing her/being rough, etc. would make her feel like a whore again.

That then begs the obvious question: would her having sensual, compassionate sex with another man tomorrow NOT make her feel like a whore?

That question broke her logic entirely and she agreed she needed to talk this through with her IC further and I encouraged that. I think she understands though, she just needs time to sort through it all—in the meantime, she said she’s going to be more mindful of how she reacts with me as she understands the painful contradiction she’s presenting.

FWIW, I have seen zero evidence that she can be productively mindful, but we’ll see.

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737606
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 11:50 AM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

What has helped me immensely, snd I think would help your WW equally, is mindfulness. Not the type of mindfulness that is thrown around by the self help people and the kumbaya types. It goes like this - before you respond your usual way to something that normally triggers your negative personality traits to include defensiveness, anger, being critical, being judgmental, etc, stop, take a breath, think about your response, then respond.

My personality hasn’t really changed - I’m still prone to anger, being critical, judgmental, harsh, etc. The difference is that what comes out of my mouth is different.

My wife’s first IC spoke with her about mindfulness at length, and almost immediately my WW began taking long pauses after I asked a question (sometimes minutes). As far as I can tell, it just dragged the conversations on longer as she still said plenty of absurd things.

And more to the point, she would stop being mindful (pausing) in direct correlation to how emotional she became. So as conversations went on, and she felt more judged, her pauses would shrink and she would become more defensive up until she reached a point where she was angrily responding to everything immediately.

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737607
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 11:59 AM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

I think there is some truth to what she is saying about feeling used vs sensual. However the WAY she is communicating it to you is not okay. She has demonstrated that she is capable of asking for specifically what she wants by making a clear and explicit request to OM. She could be making clear and explicit requests of you. She could have before DDay too. Instead, she prefers to hold this power and control over you by asking for vague things, contradicting herself, and placing all of the responsibility on your shoulders to do it exactly how she wants it to be done but also refusing to tell you what to do. Does she expect you to read her mind? Why can't she just ask you to do X, Y, and Z? I suspect you'd care less about what she did or didn't do with OM if she was putting as much effort into communicating with you about sexual things as she did with him and she acknowledged that she shared responsibility in the state of your sex life pre-A.

Thank you for this post, nekonamida; I read it to my wife. It seemed to hit her hard and she told me she understood how I felt and how unfair she was being. She said she’s going to do better at communicating in the moment.

FWIW, she is someone that never communicated with me on anything ever—at best, if she was really upset about something, she come to me days later (usually it would be weeks). Post-DDay she has been noticeably better as it’s now often minutes or hours.

She still struggles with communicating in real-time because she’s petrified of saying the wrong thing.

On the topic of sex, she also still has a hard time being open with me—as discussed, there is definitely a shame dynamic at play: as my wife, she doesn’t want me to look at her as a whore because in her mind a whore cannot be loved—and she already finds it impossible to understand how I can love her after what she did to me.

She recognizes why that’s a problematic position for her and will explore it with her IC.

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 12:11 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

The sex thing was interesting to read, as this is something that has come up recently. My WW did things with her AP she didn’t necessarily want to do, but she admits she did them because she wanted to please him barf

Jameson, thanks for the post. There’s definitely a lot at play in the mind of a cheater during sex with his/her spouse—the guilt and justifications are at war with each other.

In this case though, I see what you’re saying—and it’s exactly what my wife says: I was doing it to keep him interested, not because I wanted to do it—but I still am with @faithfulman that it’s bull shit.

Why is it acceptable for your wife to do things with someone else to keep him interested but not feel she needs to do them with you, her loving husband (assuming you want them done)?

I don’t know the specifics in your case, but my wife asked him to fuck her ass—of course she did it because she knew he’d like it, that’s the point. But if we’re having sex and she doesn’t now ask me to fuck her ass, it’s because she doesn’t give a shit if I’ll like it. With him, it was about his pleasure; with me, it’s about hers.

As I said to her, she should be offering me anal every night and have me decide if I want to or not (I don’t want anal every night, I just think the point is important). It shouldn’t be all about her pleasure with me and his pleasure with him.

My wife agrees and understands, but she’s caught up on the idea of not wanting to be a whore with me because she will feel judged the rest of the day (while we cook, play with kids, etc.). I find that incredibly frustrating—I’m not looking to punish her, I’m looking to be open and honest about our sex life.

There was a part of her that loved the idea of being treated like a whore in those hotel rooms and I’m not ok with her turning that part of her brain off with me just so I can learn about a second affair in a few years when she wants to act out all her slutty, repressed fantasies again.

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 12:28 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

DrS - How do you define intimacy? And do you believe that sex can occur without intimacy?

I define intimacy as "personal and close," but I often use the word in the context of a restaurant atmosphere, etc. In terms of relationships, it means to me an emotional and physical connection—so two people that are emotionally connected with each other and/or care about each other are having a physical relationship.

But I think the depth of the emotional connection is irrelevant—there could be intimacy during a ONS or during a 50-year marriage even though the emotional connection is wildly different.

On the other hand, sex could absolutely occur without intimacy—I’d use rape as an extreme example, but there could certainly be other times that no emotional bond has formed and two people just want a physical connection. I’d say my wife’s life has been filled with such examples.

For me, I find even on my ONS, I’d have some emotional connection. Though your question brought one specific sexual memory to mind for me:

When I was 21, I was home for the summer interning. Work would end (around 4:30) and I’d go home to meet my buddy to work out around 5:30. There was a girl I knew in my hometown—a fuck buddy—who would meet me at my house around 5~ for a quicky before I met my friend to lift. I had no interest or attraction to her—she liked me, so I had control in the dynamic.

But I’d use her for sex—there was no intimacy at all. In fact, we’d never do missionary because I had no interest in kissing her. It’s awful. I think back on it and it makes me want to cry honestly. I had to stop seeing her because I couldn’t deal with the immoral weight of the relationship, even though I didn’t understand what I was feeling at the time.

It occurs to me that I wrote all that and I have no idea why you were asking the question—so I hope that helps.

And FWIW, I do think my wife and AP had intimacy—she liked and cared about him and they developed a friendship (EA) in the three months that preceded the PA.

[This message edited by Drstrangelove at 12:40 PM, Saturday, May 28th]

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737610
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Lalala12 ( new member #79196) posted at 1:41 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

There was a part of her that loved the idea of being treated like a whore in those hotel rooms and I’m not ok with her turning that part of her brain off with me just so I can learn about a second affair in a few years when she wants to act out all her slutty, repressed fantasies again.

As a woman, I have sex fantasies where I play the whore for a man or where he treats me as a whore. BUT I would never be comfortable to play those fantasies in real life unless I am with a. someone who doesn’t know me at all, I don’t care about and can’t judge me for it or b. a partner who I trust enough to play alongside me and with whom I have no fear of showing my vulnerabilities and who I am sure respects me 100% as a person. Someone I feel equal to and make me feel equal.

You and your wife are simply not there yet. You have (and obviously so) a great deal of anger and disappointment towards her and she has too much shame in herself to be able to be that vulnerable with you. It’s no fault of yours of course but it’s just the way it is right now.

On the topic of sex, she also still has a hard time being open with me—as discussed, there is definitely a shame dynamic at play: as my wife, she doesn’t want me to look at her as a whore because in her mind a whore cannot be loved—and she already finds it impossible to understand how I can love her after what she did to me.

You might love and desire her but you also lost some respect for her because of her shitty choices. If she does the work she needs to do, that respect will come back I think.

Right now you can’t except her to re-play those fantasies with you and feel empowered by it. That’s why in my earlier post I said to not be too hard on yourself or to her on this, you still need time and work to rebuild that mutual trust and be able to go there.

(Perhaps a bit off topic but I watched a movie last night called "The last duel" where the story of a rape was told through the eyes of the 3 main characters - the woman, her husband, the rapist - just found very interesting how the sex act (not only the rape but also marital sex) was related so very differently by each of them.)

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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 2:19 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

As a woman, I have sex fantasies where I play the whore for a man or where he treats me as a whore. BUT I would never be comfortable to play those fantasies in real life unless I am with a. someone who doesn’t know me at all, I don’t care about and can’t judge me for it or b. a partner who I trust enough to play alongside me and with whom I have no fear of showing my vulnerabilities and who I am sure respects me 100% as a person. Someone I feel equal to and make me feel equal.

You and your wife are simply not there yet. You have (and obviously so) a great deal of anger and disappointment towards her and she has too much shame in herself to be able to be that vulnerable with you. It’s no fault of yours of course but it’s just the way it is right now.

You might love and desire her but you also lost some respect for her because of her shitty choices. If she does the work she needs to do, that respect will come back I think.

Right now you can’t except her to re-play those fantasies with you and feel empowered by it. That’s why in my earlier post I said to not be too hard on yourself or to her on this, you still need time and work to rebuild that mutual trust and be able to go there.

Totally fair—and that’s what she has said, though admittedly you’ve explained it more eloquently. I’ve been truthful this entire time, so I won’t stop now. I just don’t care.

I’ve given 17 years of my life to my wife; devote, respectful and loving. Time is not on her side right now. If she doesn’t have comfort around me now—with me sitting next to her crying every day about what she did to me, crushed under the weight of how much I loved her—I can accept that and move on. Genuinely.

(Perhaps a bit off topic but I watched a movie last night called "The last duel" where the story of a rape was told through the eyes of the 3 main characters - the woman, her husband, the rapist - just found very interesting how the sex act (not only the rape but also marital sex) was related so very differently by each of them.)

It was a good movie, but I thought it was a bit unfocused and struggled with the nuance of the differing stories. If you haven’t seen it, check out Rashomon (Kurosawa, 1950)—it has a similar narrative structure and handles the perspective of truth significantly better.

[This message edited by Drstrangelove at 3:42 PM, Saturday, May 28th]

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737619
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clouds777 ( member #72442) posted at 3:19 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

I’ve been truthful this entire time, so I won’t stop now. I just don’t care

I'm glad to see you say this. Because you should not care. She is going to run out the clock of your patience with all this bullshit and it isn't your problem to solve.

Yes, this is true that it may be too difficult for her to be vulnerable. But you know what else will be difficult for her? Divorce. So she should figure her shit out now or save the pitiful act for someone else. If she can't do it or she can't do it now, then she isn't cut out for r. I disagree that she needs time and understanding in this area of the marriage. She doesn't. She could do better if she wanted. So far, she doesn't want to.

posts: 307   ·   registered: Jan. 1st, 2020
id 8737622
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truthsetmefree ( member #7168) posted at 3:27 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

But I think the depth of the emotional connection is irrelevant

Irrelevant in what sense? I’m not sure if by that statement you are qualifying it as meeting the basic textbook definition…or if you are recognizing that there are degrees. And if you do recognize there are degrees, then how important to you are the degrees?

If she doesn’t have comfort around me now—with me sitting next to her crying every day about what she did to me, crushed under the weight of how much I loved her

Is this intimacy?

It occurs to me that I wrote all that and I have no idea why you were asking the question

I know. smile Can you trust me here with where I’m going? After all, I’m just some internet stranger that you are sharing lots of REALLY personal information with - but you do have the option to just disregard it all and walk away at any moment. Right?


ETA: Trying to keep our interaction focused on my question but the story you shared about your 21 yr old experience is most interesting. Not so much the story itself…but the trigger to share it in response to my question and even how you view it now vs at the time. Might be worth exploring more some of those inner connections that you are making.

[This message edited by truthsetmefree at 3:35 PM, Saturday, May 28th]

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: 8919   ·   registered: May. 18th, 2005
id 8737623
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 3:50 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

Irrelevant in what sense? I’m not sure if by that statement you are qualifying it as meeting the basic textbook definition…or if you are recognizing that there are degrees. And if you do recognize there are degrees, then how important to you are the degrees?

I think there are degrees to intimacy, but on both extremes (ONS vs. 50-year marriage) there can be intimacy.

Me: "If she doesn’t have comfort around me now—with me sitting next to her crying every day about what she did to me, crushed under the weight of how much I loved her"

Is this intimacy?

Not in the sense I'd define the word as it's not physical/sexual intimacy and that's how I look at the word in terms of relationships. Perhaps my intimate relationship with my wife allows me to be open and vulnerable with her. Though, I'm open and vulnerable with all you internet strangers as well--so are my posts here intimacy in your view? It is a complicated word. :P

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737624
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Jameson1977 ( member #54177) posted at 4:25 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

I agree Dr., it is bullshit! My WW talked about all the other things in our life that contributed to how she was feeling during her A. Father and grandmother dying, work stress, blah, blah, blah. Never understood how screwing some asshole and being used helps the grieving process.

My WW also gave the POS unprotected anal in my case. It’s something we did before and after her A, but she has since told me she is uncomfortable with it now, not because it’s something they did together, but she knows what’s going through my mind when we do it. She’s not wrong, after dday when we did it, I was thinking about it and it did affect me. The other things they did, no thanks, not something I’m interested in at all, and if I’m honest, my WW did not want to do these things, but the pressure to please him had her if it her objections. This totally contradicts the bullshit "feeling of power and control" narrative.

Simply put, my WW did this shit because he wanted it and deep down, she wanted to please this POS more than maintain her dignity. What does that say about her?

My WW are now mid forties, and she is begging menopause, so our sex life is changing for other reasons now. My WW seems to be content with vanilla sex, once per week. We have, for most our relationship, had sex 3-5 times per week. It was something important to me. Its about getting off for me, but being close to her and making her feel great (my WW is a man’s ego boost, she orgasms easily and over and over), as this boots my ego and makes sex great.

In my case, my WW is my only sexual partner, we were each other’s first and only, so this stings a bit more for me and has me question my ability. I’ve seen how my WW can deceive me so easily, maybe she’s bullshitting me about how great I am. It’s a real mind fuc$.

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id 8737627
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truthsetmefree ( member #7168) posted at 4:27 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

Perhaps my intimate relationship with my wife allows me to be open and vulnerable with her. Though, I'm open and vulnerable with all you internet strangers as well--so are my posts here intimacy in your view? It is a complicated word.

I understand your point - and I promise I’m not arguing semantics.

To answer your question here from my perspective - no, this is not intimacy. It’d be easy to assume that is because there is no physical component. Many would dismiss it as qualifying simply on that aspect alone. But yet it’s still "open and vulnerable" - I would guess you are actually being exceptionally honest here.

You’ve also already indicated that you believe sex can happen - and even in a chosen, enjoyable interchange - without intimacy.

So what makes the difference? What IS the core component to intimacy?

Vulnerability. The degree of vulnerability.

In that regard, would it be fair to say that vulnerability (or more so, the fear of) can actually make true/real intimacy harder to achieve?

Would it also be fair to say that limiting real vulnerability would make it easier to engage in acts that would appear to be intimate (but in reality, can’t possibly be because they lack the core component)? As an example, is it not your anonymity here that actually allows you to be more open and "vulnerable"?

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: 8919   ·   registered: May. 18th, 2005
id 8737628
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 4:46 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

I'm glad to see you say this. Because you should not care. She is going to run out the clock of your patience with all this bullshit and it isn't your problem to solve.

Yes, this is true that it may be too difficult for her to be vulnerable. But you know what else will be difficult for her? Divorce. So she should figure her shit out now or save the pitiful act for someone else. If she can't do it or she can't do it now, then she isn't cut out for r. I disagree that she needs time and understanding in this area of the marriage. She doesn't. She could do better if she wanted. So far, she doesn't want to.

I agree Dr., it is bullshit! My WW talked about all the other things in our life that contributed to how she was feeling during her A. Father and grandmother dying, work stress, blah, blah, blah. Never understood how screwing some asshole and being used helps the grieving process.

My WW also gave the POS unprotected anal in my case. It’s something we did before and after her A, but she has since told me she is uncomfortable with it now, not because it’s something they did together, but she knows what’s going through my mind when we do it. She’s not wrong, after dday when we did it, I was thinking about it and it did affect me. The other things they did, no thanks, not something I’m interested in at all, and if I’m honest, my WW did not want to do these things, but the pressure to please him had her if it her objections. This totally contradicts the bullshit "feeling of power and control" narrative.

Simply put, my WW did this shit because he wanted it and deep down, she wanted to please this POS more than maintain her dignity. What does that say about her?

My WW are now mid forties, and she is begging menopause, so our sex life is changing for other reasons now. My WW seems to be content with vanilla sex, once per week. We have, for most our relationship, had sex 3-5 times per week. It was something important to me. Its about getting off for me, but being close to her and making her feel great (my WW is a man’s ego boost, she orgasms easily and over and over), as this boots my ego and makes sex great.

In my case, my WW is my only sexual partner, we were each other’s first and only, so this stings a bit more for me and has me question my ability. I’ve seen how my WW can deceive me so easily, maybe she’s bullshitting me about how great I am. It’s a real mind fuc$.

Yea, we all agree. I have no doubt my wife is navigating a complicated emotional landscape right now, but mine is worse. Just as I could say it's too hard and walk away, she could say the same. I'm unable to relate to the position that she doesn't have any agency right now.

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737629
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 5:11 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

To answer your question here from my perspective - no, this is not intimacy. It’d be easy to assume that is because there is no physical component. Many would dismiss it as qualifying simply on that aspect alone. But yet it’s still "open and vulnerable" - I would guess you are actually being exceptionally honest here.

You’ve also already indicated that you believe sex can happen - and even in a chosen, enjoyable interchange - without intimacy.

So what makes the difference? What IS the core component to intimacy?

Vulnerability. The degree of vulnerability.

Certainly vulnerability is a component, but I wouldn't label it as core as it shifts based on the circumstance. It also may be a difference between men and women. I don't always feel vulnerable when I'm being intimate, though there are plenty of times I do. If my wife asked to peg me tonight, and for whatever reason I went along with it, I'd feel REALLY vulnerable in that moment lol. But if we're just having a typical tryst, I'm more likely to experience feelings of love, lust, pleasure, etc.

I think the core component to physical intimacy is an emotional connection--and that connection has a wide spectrum. Maybe you just meet someone for a first date and discuss a cafe you both once visited in Rome--you feel drawn to each other as you each reflect on a joyful memory. There's a spark, an attraction; you sneak off to an alley and have a passionate fuck. It's raw, intimate.

Alternatively, perhaps I have no idea what I'm writing about right now. I'm really off the main road here and engaging with this as a mental exercise.

In that regard, would it be fair to say that vulnerability (or more so, the fear of) can actually make true/real intimacy harder to achieve?

I agree with that--I think the fear of being vulnerable can prevent you from achieving deeper levels of intimacy. I can relate to that and I wrote about it early on in my first thread. As I discovered my sexual kinks at the age of 20-21, I was hesitant to play them out with very attractive girls or girls I liked--I felt like it could scare them off and I'd be seen as a loser. I'd instead explore them with girls I had control over; girls who liked me more than I liked them--so they'd be willing to cut me more slack, and if they didn't, nothing would be lost if they were scared off.

Once I started seriously dating my wife, I began to open up more with her--fairly quickly (age 22~) I was entirely honest with her. It's a trait that largely comes natural to me--it's probably the core tenet of my personality. As a very young man, I was on shaky ground with my sexuality--I sexually developed late, kissing my first girl at 18--but by 22, I had no issue being honest with what I wanted, in and out of the bedroom.

My wife is the opposite, walled off in all aspects of her life, terrified of being vulnerable; because she's terrified of being judged. In some ways I think I welcome judgement--just do it to my face. (I've enjoyed the brief conflicts with my CT in that regard.)

Would it also be fair to say that limiting real vulnerability would make it easier to engage in acts that would appear to be intimate (but in reality, can’t possibly be because they lack the core component)? As an example, is it not your anonymity here that actually allows you to be more open and "vulnerable"?

Yes, I agree with you and that fits my example above, but I disagree with your example. It's not my anonymity here that allows me to be honest; it's the expectation that none of you are directly involved with my life. You could swing by my house this afternoon and I'd happily show you my driver's license and be equally open with you without you even telling me your name (you seem like a swell person, so I'd even cook you dinner!).

I don't fear honesty; but I fear potential consequences to my life: children, wife, etc. It's why I wouldn't go to the community pool right now and broadcast my wife's affair as it would have a direct affect on the people in my life. Zero concerns with talking to any of you though.

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737632
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truthsetmefree ( member #7168) posted at 6:17 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

(you seem like a swell person, so I'd even cook you dinner!)

Thank you for that! laugh smile


I'm really off the main road here and engaging with this as a mental exercise.

I also appreciate this.


Certainly vulnerability is a component, but I wouldn't label it as core as it shifts based on the circumstance. It also may be a difference between men and women.

Then would not also that shift create the shift in the degree of intimacy?
I also think you have hit on a the fundamental challenge in men vs women. See again my appreciation above. smile

One of the things I see frequently here is men that just cannot understand how their wife could do the things she did in an affair yet have apprehension or reservation in engaging in those same things with her husband. She explains…and that aspect makes perfect sense to me as a woman. Yet they get stuck there - continually bringing it back to prowess, desire, even equipment. They think their wives are just lying. And they frequently set the standard that she must do with them what she did with the AP - and yet don’t understand why, even if she is willing, she is not connected, enthusiastic. They feel she engages begrudgingly, even the great sexual aspect still sucks, and they cycle back through the prowess/desire/equipment Rolodex. They don’t understand the role the emotional component plays for their wife - because to them, the act of the sex IS the predominant emotional connection. (And I’m not saying ALL men are this way. I am merely speaking to the pattern that I see many men get stuck in.)

Even when they start to understand the emotional component then they attribute the sexual enthusiasm in the affair to some kind of deep feeling/connection to the AP. That can be the case…but it also can not be the case. Either way, I argue that it’s largely not real because affairs are fundamentally based on illusion and fantasy…they don’t involve real intimacy no matter how great the chemistry. Much like a drug trip. The drug is the drug…but everything that happens after the drug/due to the drug is illusion. All we BSs spend so much time trying to unravel the drug trip itself. And then we wonder why we feel so crazy.

Affairs are about power and control. That’s the root and it’s why secrecy is a prerequisite. The root of the need for power and control is a sense of vulnerability AND a fear of that. How we deal with that fear of vulnerability manifests itself in all different ways. We may strive to be the very best in our career…or we may respond defensively in any situation that looks like we are wrong somehow. Both of these examples are an attempt to ward off vulnerability. This explanation matters only to help you interpret what has already happened from a view of the whole field. The individual details are merely mud on the field and where we get mired down - both as we process/try to understand and as we try to heal/move forward. There are tons of us still just trying to get the stain out of our uniform.

It seems your wife has vulnerability issues. My guess is you likely do too. Water seeks its own level. If you will and can just imagine, an affair brings all this to the center stage. All the ways you two had learned to cope with the more silent/less obvious signs is now gone - and that’s partly because you each feel more vulnerable than you even did before. Your wife will either address these issues and make a choice (because overcoming fear requires a choice at some point) - or she won’t. None of us here can predict that outcome - no matter our experiences or similarities. You want to deal with your current vulnerabilities by trying to see into the future - without maybe recognizing how your willingness/unwillingness to address your own vulnerabilities will ultimately create your future. (No judgment…I can only offer awareness and only if what I am offering actually applies.)

You have lots of correlations now with the stories from your own past experiences. Can you relate that to your wife’s choices? And more importantly, can you see how you’ve coped with your own fear of real vulnerability? Sometimes the present is too hard to look at, too hard to see…but when you can draw the correlations from the past then it becomes softer and easier to let in.

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: 8919   ·   registered: May. 18th, 2005
id 8737637
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Never2late ( member #79079) posted at 7:12 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

Doc....you coulda lead with the dinner invitation. We all could have had this discussion over a nice meal and a couple bottles of wine.

posts: 73   ·   registered: Jul. 7th, 2021
id 8737643
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 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 8:19 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

One of the things I see frequently here is men that just cannot understand how their wife could do the things she did in an affair yet have apprehension or reservation in engaging in those same things with her husband. She explains…and that aspect makes perfect sense to me as a woman. Yet they get stuck there - continually bringing it back to prowess, desire, even equipment. They think their wives are just lying.

I understand it entirely; like I wrote, I just don’t care.

My wife spent 15~ years destroying our sex life. She wielded sex like a weapon over her husband, who loved her dearly. I have no doubt it was well justified in her mind: I belittled her, was dismissive of her, disrespected her—she convinced herself of all kinds of monstrous things. I have zero sympathy for any of it as not once did she raise it in a conversation with me.

She stole 15 years of passion and love from my life; all the time I thought she was dealing with entirely different issues that she wouldn’t or couldn’t communicate.

Fast-forward to now.

I learn that she fell for another man; a spark that drew her to him emotionally and eventually physically. She gave herself entirely to the man sexually.

She doesn’t get to do that. It’s not part of the game—she broke all the rules.

As Alanis Morissette famously sang, "…you told me you’d hold me until you died…but you're still alive."

Now I’m told she can’t be vulnerable with me because she can’t understand how I can love and respect her, a self-defined whore. Maybe that’s an accurate reflection of how she feels—but again, I just don’t care. It’s all on her—all of it.

She needs to wake the fuck up, reflect on our relationship, and decide now if she can trust me. Perhaps it’s a leap of faith, perhaps it’ll be easy for her; but there’s no other way out for her. She takes the plunge now with me or she finds another partner to trust and grow old with.

Truthfully, I like the setup. I think it’s entirely fair, all things considered. And there’s built in risk for her too—tonight she can swing from the chandelier with me hanging out of her asshole and I could still walk away tomorrow (I sadly don’t have a chandelier).

That’s risk; she has skin in the game. And it still pales in comparison to my risk: sitting here exploring the idea of moving forward with a woman who has thoroughly and violently assaulted me. All she has to do is be vulnerable with the person she can confirm has loved her more than any living being on this earth.

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737646
default

 Drstrangelove (original poster member #80134) posted at 8:19 PM on Saturday, May 28th, 2022

Doc....you coulda lead with the dinner invitation. We all could have had this discussion over a nice meal and a couple bottles of wine.

Anytime! Shoot me a PM. :P

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: 972   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022
id 8737647
Topic is Sleeping.
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