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Newest Member: Momof2greatadults

Just Found Out :
Looking for Advice

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HalfTime2017 ( member #64366) posted at 6:44 PM on Friday, July 8th, 2022

Hawaii, have you thought about maybe contacting your husband's exes, to see if they have had a similar type experience? I would not trust what your husband tells you, you're on your own to find out the truth.

If you are able to connect with his previous exes on this topic, that may help your decision one way or another in moving forward with him. Just a thought. If he has a history of this, it may be time to terminate. If not, and you're willing to give him a chance, than at least you know this was the only 3 times he's done it.

posts: 1345   ·   registered: Jul. 5th, 2018   ·   location: Cali
id 8743911
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 HeartbreakInHawaii (original poster new member #80401) posted at 6:29 AM on Saturday, July 9th, 2022

Chamomile – Hilariously, I made that exact point when I first found out and he was busy deflecting/blame-shifting: I was in the same sad, distant, lonely relationship he was and I managed to NOT fuck anybody else. I don’t know if he’s always had a "but" in his core values or if that’s something new based on the person he’s become the last few years. Either way, I don’t have any "buts" in my core values, so that’s a fundamental disconnect for me. It's a non-negotiable.
Cooley – I agree completely. He is a 40-year-old behaving as though he’s just moved out of his parents and doesn’t have a curfew for the first time. Whatever the rationale he’s using, I can’t and won’t accept it. I think I’ve been kidding myself about the depth of this betrayal and the ways in which he’s made me look foolish: I’m angry and embarrassed that I got duped so thoroughly and for so long.
Tush – What I’ve been told from WS and family is that it was a poor relationship from the jump, two kids too young to be married. I have noticed a lot of communication issues that he’s carried into our relationship: despite being desperate to "have a conversation" as soon as there’s hurt feelings, WS is completely incapable of proactively communicating how he’s feeling. His narrow-mindedness leads him to make conclusions and assumptions on his own, without even having the conversation with the other person. Since I found out about the As, I’ve realized that we haven’t been on different pages, we’re in entirely different books: where I thought our relationship was is entirely different than where he thought it was because he never fucking talked to me. I just kept reaching out and trying and getting affirmation because he was too scared to have a hard conversation. He'd rather keep his head in the sand than risk the discomfort. I think the validation piece is another common thread – personally and professionally, he has always been desperate to have other people confirm his value because he can’t do it himself.
1girls – I’ve reached out to his sister-in-law, the only positive FOO relationship I have access to. I’m hoping that because we had a good relationship and because she’s not a blood relative that she’ll be honest, but I’m not confident. I also reached out to one of the few friends he had prior to our relationship, but haven’t heard back from her. We haven’t spoken the last few days, but when we do, if I’m feeling like I still want to consider R then I’m going to insist on passwords for his email and socials – he’s given me access to his phone and everything, but when he’s not physically here that doesn’t help very much.
HalfTime – I would if I could. He has an Instagram page with no exes, and I don’t know their social handles to reach out myself. Again, I think if we have a discussion about R as a potential avenue, then I may ask him for their contact info so I can verify he’s being truthful, especially since he deleted all of the texts with his APs.

The last time we saw each other, it didn't end well. I've communicated to him that when we're spending time together I want to feel wanted by him, not necessarily through sex but through affection and nearness (especially since he's not living here). And I still don't feel it. He claims it's because he's not sure what's allowed and what's not, and while we've tried to have a conversation about my expectations and his capacity to meet them, I feel like I'm being asked to draw a road map for a city I've never been to. While there's a few things that I feel pretty consistently (that I need to feel like a priority when we're together, that I need to have safe, uninterrupted space to speak, that I want him to proactively tell me how he's feeling/what he's thinking) so much changes hourly. He'll check in before coming over, and the things I've shared that I'm feeling have already changed by the time he gets here. How have other BSs dealt with the roller coaster? I want to be clear about my needs so that I can (potentially) have them met, but I feel like I can't keep up/articulate fast enough.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Jun. 30th, 2022   ·   location: Canada
id 8743988
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Grieving ( member #79540) posted at 12:46 PM on Saturday, July 9th, 2022

The roller coaster is super hard, and I love your metaphor of being asked to draw a road map to a city you’ve never been to. My husband did that in the beginning—he wanted clear, consistent direction from me about everything he was supposed to do, when I was reeling and spinning through too many emotions to know what I wanted or what to do next.

I think it’s ok to say that you don’t know what you want yet. He caused the upheaval and uncertainty; he put you on the roller coaster. He’ll have to live with it while you figure things out for yourself.

If you’re struggling to figure out what you need and want from him (perfectly natural), I would say take a step back and just work on caring for yourself. About a month after I found out about my husband’s affair, I read Stosny’s Living and Loving after Betrayal. In some ways it was way too soon to read it—my world was still spinning too much for me to sift through it appropriately and get what I needed from it. But it had the very needed effect of putting my focus on healing and caring for myself rather than focusing on my husband and what I wanted from him.

I don’t feel like I have a lot of wisdom for how to approach possible reconciliation with your partner as he lives apart from you—my situation was so different. But I think turning your focus on yourself and your own needs is a good first step. If he values and wants the relationship, he can be patient and deal with uncertainty while you figure out what you want and need.

Married for 20 years with two kids when my husband had a six month emotional and physical affair with a coworker. DD1: 6/2020 (soft evidence followed by a month of lies). DD2: 7/3/2020 (hard evidence, truth, started reconciliation journey).

posts: 190   ·   registered: Oct. 30th, 2021
id 8744005
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 HeartbreakInHawaii (original poster new member #80401) posted at 8:33 AM on Tuesday, July 12th, 2022

Working on myself is all that's going to be possible moving forward. I had a conversation with WS tonight and he was angry and defensive. I called him out on his inability to respect my boundaries and he admitted he doesn't know what he wants, doesn't know if he wants me.

I know I can't make someone want R, and I definitely can't make him want me. And I won't try to, I couldn't. I told him so on the phone. I really believed it would be different, how fucking naive. Throughout our relationship WS was so adamant that I was his priority (I believe I was in the beginning) that I really thought he'd reply with that kind of conviction. But no such luck.

I told him his weak values and lack of integrity make it impossible for me to believe him, that I need to see proof of and progress on "the work". He chose to reply by blame-shifting and claiming I expect him to be rid of his depression and anxiety and be perfect now. Not the case, and I detailed what I am looking for. Still no acknowledgement or understanding.

I'm so so sad. I don't recognize this person and I'm really struggling with the loss of 5 years' worth of (what I thought was) reality. I know I'll be okay, we went NC for a week to try and sort through things individually but the fact that things were unresolved made it hard to focus on the things I was doing, visits with friends and family. I feel like I finally have some closure, I just wish it wasn't my reality.

[This message edited by HeartbreakInHawaii at 8:34 AM, Tuesday, July 12th]

posts: 15   ·   registered: Jun. 30th, 2022   ·   location: Canada
id 8744323
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Grieving ( member #79540) posted at 12:03 PM on Tuesday, July 12th, 2022

I’m so very sorry. You seem like a strong person with a wonderful head on your shoulders and you will get through this, but betrayal and loss like this are so painful. Take care of yourself. Hugs.

Married for 20 years with two kids when my husband had a six month emotional and physical affair with a coworker. DD1: 6/2020 (soft evidence followed by a month of lies). DD2: 7/3/2020 (hard evidence, truth, started reconciliation journey).

posts: 190   ·   registered: Oct. 30th, 2021
id 8744330
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ChamomileTea ( Guide #53574) posted at 4:21 PM on Tuesday, July 12th, 2022

We try to find the best in people, and most of the time we're rewarded for that. But when it comes to infidelity, our generosity can sometimes keep us from seeing what we don't want to see. This guy basically answered your offer to work with him, an offer he demonstratively does NOT deserve, with "what about me?" shocked
Seriously, think about that for a minute. You're outlining a possible solution where he can save his relationship with you and he's all miffed that you have expectations. He has, in figurative terms, stuck a knife in your back, but to his mind your chief concern should be his depression and anxiety. duh duh shocked

His depression and anxiety did NOT cause him to cheat. Lots of people have had depression and anxiety without cheating. Hell, I have had depression and anxiety without cheating. What it sounds like to me is that he's immersed himself in self-pity rather than deal with the fallout of his perfidy. It's possible that this is WHO HE IS and that he really is this selfish and narcissistic.

BW: 2004(online EAs), 2014 (multiple PAs)Married 38 years; in R with fWH for 7

No one can make you into a liar but you.

posts: 5745   ·   registered: Jun. 8th, 2016   ·   location: U.S.
id 8744362
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 HeartbreakInHawaii (original poster new member #80401) posted at 6:59 PM on Tuesday, July 12th, 2022

100% Chamomile - I tried to explain that having conviction about wanting to save the relationship/wanting me and being in a bad mental health space are not correlated. But no avail. He believes his poor mental health state is causing uncertainty. I do not believe or accept this and said that uncertainty is a dealbreaker for me.
I think you hit the nail on the head - he's choosing self-pity and a victim mentality over the hard work to fix the fuckery he created.
I'm so grateful I have an incredible support system, friends and family who have done nothing but make me feel loved and valued. But I'm really resentful that this shit storm has me in survival mode, spending my summer trying to process trauma rather than being the social, positive, happy person I've always been. I feel like I'm disappointing everyone by being a shell of who I was (that's my own doing, not based on any reality; everyone is so understanding and empathetic). And I know things will get better, but I'm impatient and the fact that my life is currently derailed on top of the past betrayal makes me even angrier at WS. I'm going to try and make it to a kickboxing class tonight to work some of that anger out physically.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Jun. 30th, 2022   ·   location: Canada
id 8744409
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Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 8:29 PM on Tuesday, July 12th, 2022

You are grieving and it is on your timeline not anyone Else’s. Be sad. It is ok to feel the lose of trust, hopes and dreams.
Please look up personality disorders. He’s beginning to sound like he is either borderline, narcissistic or both. I do not have the qualifications to diagnose him I’m just making suggestions for you.

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

posts: 3387   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8744417
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 HeartbreakInHawaii (original poster new member #80401) posted at 5:21 AM on Saturday, July 16th, 2022

Since WS told me he wasn't sure what he wants, I've gone NC except for a text where I told him I'm concerned about his health; I genuinely think he needs meds for his insomnia and depression. His past episodes of suicidal ideation have me really worried. He texted back his appreciation, saying he knows he doesn't deserve it and that he's going to advocate for help from his doctor.
I've been going to yoga classes and cleaning the house, packing his stuff and I have tickets to a drag show tomorrow with my besties but no matter how busy I am, anytime I sit still I'm just instinctually reaching for the phone to text him. We were in contact all day everyday (through the As) by text and calls and seeing each other for the last 5 years. I'm really struggling with missing the one person I've had to count on, my comfort person. I haven't reached out and I know I can't, he doesn't have anything to give me while he's trying to survive what he's done to his life. Does anyone have advice about missing the companionship of a relationship post-A?

posts: 15   ·   registered: Jun. 30th, 2022   ·   location: Canada
id 8745004
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 12:07 AM on Sunday, July 17th, 2022

Does anyone have advice about missing the companionship of a relationship post-A?

Go strictly and permanently no contact. Block him from your phone, social media, drop mutual friends, etc. He has his life and you have your completely separate life. That will gradually get him out of your system, to the point where you can start dating again, and your focus will no longer reside in him. Building up other activities in your life can help, as well, but as much as people will tell you that relationships aren't necessary for happiness, for most people they're important, so resuming dating is an important part of the process, after you've established and maintained strict no contact.

Another tip, if you tend to romanticize the past, is to write a list of all of the bad things he said and did, that you will never have to experience from him again. You can check that list periodically and add to it as bad memories pop into your head. Examples:

I will never again have to worry about if he is with someone else.

I will never again have to hear him tell me "isn't sure what he wants" despite me giving him all of my love.

Etc., etc. The list will also help you face the reality of what a bad relationship it was, and strengthen your resolve in moving on. It will also serve as a guide for what you do not want from a relationship in the future.

posts: 454   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8745077
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 HeartbreakInHawaii (original poster new member #80401) posted at 3:28 AM on Monday, July 18th, 2022

Thanks, MG. I like the idea of a list a lot; makes things tangible.

I won't be able to go permanently NC until he picks up all his things from our house. I've been packing them, but at the advice of my IC I'm waiting to ask him to come pick them up because of his mental state. I'm going to wait two weeks and hope he's in a better place and able to deal with things.

I know I'll be okay in the long run, it's just this adjustment period that's tough. For example, we adopted a dog together and I would send him pictures and videos (I work from home) of her. She'll do something funny and I want to share it with him and I know I can't anymore. Or last week when I got a cold (tested negative for COVID, thank god) and I would normally reach out to him when I'm feeling bad. The loss of the person who I told everything to throughout my day, the man (who I thought) was my partner and my friend is another layer of loss that I'm struggling with.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Jun. 30th, 2022   ·   location: Canada
id 8745214
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The1stWife ( member #58832) posted at 3:45 AM on Monday, July 18th, 2022

You have to remind yourself he’s not the guy you thought he was. That guy no longer exists. He’s been replaced by the guy he is now.

So sorry for you.

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 12306   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8745217
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 6:08 AM on Monday, July 18th, 2022

Thanks, MG. I like the idea of a list a lot; makes things tangible.

You're most welcome. The list helped me get through the initial break-up period, like what you're describing. I don't need it or even have it anymore. I can't even remember when I deleted it. But I do remember that during that initial transition from partnered to single, it helped a lot to have the list. And everything on it was true. I'm better off now. I hope to find someone in the future (haven't started looking yet, partially because I'm overwhelmed with other issues especially a chronically sick child), but even if I don't, I'll be better off then I was with my cheater.

posts: 454   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8745221
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ShockedAndShattered ( new member #79685) posted at 11:43 PM on Monday, July 18th, 2022

Hi there Hawaii,

I am so sorry you're going through this. You're grieving the partner you thought you had. You're grieving the plans you made. You're grieving your believe in love. It's so hard. Please know that every BS on here can relate with you and you are not alone in how you feel.

I read your comments and I just wanted to tell you that you sound like a fabulous human with a big heart and a lot of love to give. Remember your worth. You are a goddess and you deserve the best the world has to offer.

I wish you strength, positivity, grace, light and all the love in the world. Please take care of yourself.

Sending hugs.

BS(me):42 WH:43D
Day 1- 9/11/2021 EA 5+ yrs & lies TT
DDay 2- 9/23/2021 EA 2+ years & lies TT
DDay 3- 10/17/2021 EAs 1.5 yrs/5+ yrs TT
DDay 4- 04/11/2022 Conf PA w/1 EA
DDay 5- 8/2/22 Failed Poly
DDay 6- 8/7/22 Whatever...

posts: 46   ·   registered: Dec. 17th, 2021
id 8745329
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CoderMom ( member #66033) posted at 4:26 AM on Monday, August 1st, 2022

That is a difficult spot to be in. I've been on the receiving end of a cheating husband and even found one of his flings showing up on my door step to by his (our) truck. Wow! He ended up losing his job once because he was caught having sex on the job. Hope it all works out for you.

posts: 299   ·   registered: Aug. 31st, 2018
id 8747860
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 HeartbreakInHawaii (original poster new member #80401) posted at 7:49 AM on Saturday, August 6th, 2022

After two weeks of NC, I saw WS tonight to try and understand where his head is at and what that means for me moving forward: if he's not 250% chasing R, then I won't even consider it and will end things now. As expected, I was disappointed in how he showed up. His mental health is worse than when we saw each other a month ago, and while I respect the significance of mental health, I also resent the lack of progress on his part.
But that's my answer isn't it? I've been waiting for him to come out of the fog and focus on me and he can't/won't put me first. So that's that. I told him I forgive him, but I can't be with someone who doesn't have conviction in my fucking worth.
All that's left is for him to pick-up his things. And since I can't/won't message him, here's what I would if I could.

"Today, I wanted clarity on whether you are in love with me, whether you want this, us. Not if we could make it work or how. But whether you even want to. And in your roundabout way, you gave me my answer.
When we first met, you chose to put me and us first, so I know what it looks like. I know what it feels like when you are desperate to convince me of your experience, your feelings, how much you believe in us. And in the months since I found out who you really are (not who I imagined you were) you can’t demonstrate the same urgency and conviction and passion for me. Why is that?
I think it’s because your body is physically incapable of it, because you’re fundamentally a liar focused on self-preservation. Hear me out: you know deep down in your being that it’s not true anymore, that you’re not in love with me. So, you side-step and try and evade direct, conclusive answers. That way, down the line when you’re rationalizing to justify your behaviour, you can know that you never really lied to me. Not technically. And that fucking hurts.
But even more than the hurt, I’m so fucking tired of you not showing me the basic decency of an even playing field. You continue to lie now, even as the sun sets on us, just so I’m not playing on the same level and with the same set of rules as you. I’ve been unequal our entire relationship—but not in the way you’ve always claimed, me with all the power. Surprise! I’ve been three moves behind because you’ve never shown me the respect of being truthful or being my equal.
You’re not in love with me. And instead of showing any integrity at all, you make me sort through the wreckage and come to this conclusion all by myself. So we are at the end. Even if I could find a way to move past the way you annihilated us and then abandoned me in my grief, I won’t waste a single fucking breath on a cheater who isn’t desperately trying to keep me in their life. Because I am beyond what you deserve."

posts: 15   ·   registered: Jun. 30th, 2022   ·   location: Canada
id 8748501
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Grieving ( member #79540) posted at 11:27 AM on Saturday, August 6th, 2022

I’m so very sorry, heartbreak. You don’t deserve this. But I admire your strength and clarity. You will get through the pain and things will be better, but I wish you hadn’t had to go through this. ❤️

Married for 20 years with two kids when my husband had a six month emotional and physical affair with a coworker. DD1: 6/2020 (soft evidence followed by a month of lies). DD2: 7/3/2020 (hard evidence, truth, started reconciliation journey).

posts: 190   ·   registered: Oct. 30th, 2021
id 8748503
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jb3199 ( member #27673) posted at 1:05 PM on Saturday, August 6th, 2022

I’ve been three moves behind because you’ve never shown me the respect of being truthful or being my equal.

That's what it comes down to when we are in a dishonest relationship---being three steps behind in trying to find the truth.

Just the fact that we have to search for the truth is ridiculous. But when we KNOW that we have been wronged, and the guilty party doesn't even have the decency/respect to be honest with the one they are most intimate with, it speaks a lot about their character.

Unfortunately, your ex will now take his bag of brokenness, and apply it to his next relationship.

BH-50s
WW-50s
2 boys
Married almost 30yrs.

All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
D-Day(s): Enough
Accepting that I can/may end this marriage 7/2/14

posts: 4051   ·   registered: Feb. 21st, 2010   ·   location: northeast
id 8748513
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The1stWife ( member #58832) posted at 1:14 PM on Saturday, August 6th, 2022

He may not read your text or letter.

And if he does he may not care.

Please don’t expect it to change anything. Not him. Not his selfish behavior. Not his poor choices.

I’m sorry it has come to this. But I think you need to stop putting him first.

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 12306   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8748516
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Justsomeguy ( member #65583) posted at 4:11 PM on Saturday, August 6th, 2022

Does anyone have advice about missing the companionship of a relationship post-A?

I just had this conversation last night. I quite a bit further along than you, but it has been a process. At first, I did everything wrong and then did most things wrong. Now, it's just some.

After I decided to D, I desperately tried to do two unhealthy things. The first was seek outside validation. I had been utterly discarded by my WW'S actions, so I needed to feel that I was not worthless. The second is I had this desperate need to try and recreate or at least find a substitute for the Norman Rockwell version of what I thought my life was. If I could find a replacement for as many of the features could, then things wouldn't be so bad. I got into a relationship far too soon and it further damaged me. Once that ended, I cycled through periods of loneliness and tried OLD, usually every 6-8 months and lasting only days or up to a week before giving up. I was the king of first dates but did not want second dates. If I did go on more than one date, I started to suffer panic attacks, with one lasting days. It was awful.

I have come to the conclusion that I may not becrelationship material any longer. I may be too damaged, but that's okay. I have also come to realize that being alone is not a curse, but may be just what I need. I am at peace and that is extremely important to me, as my marriage was filled with stress with my EXWW being what we call a crazy maker.

Last night I had a talk with a wo.an who agreed to be my plus one. We talkedover a glass of wine and she was expressing that she wanted more, but I told her that I just could not be in any type of relationship without suffering anxiety and panic attacks. When we agreed to a platonic friendship, I was created and really enjoyed it. Sadly, I think it is coming to an end, but I have grown so accustomed to being and doing alone, that I welcome the return.

I guess what I am saying is that you have been presented with an opportunity to really explore who you are. I know the circumstances are shit, but aside from that how else are we forced to grow? People would tell me that I would become a better, stronger person through this. I desperately had to resist the urge to punch them in the face, but now I must admit they were right.

Maybe look back at who you were before you met your WS. What were you like? What passions drove you? Rediscover those and remember, he did not complete you. That's just some shitty Hollywod writing. We are all complete on our own.

Me:55 STBXWW:55 DD#1: false confession of EA Dec. 2016. False R for a year.DD#2: confessed to year long PA Dec. 2 2017 (was about to be outed)Called it off.Denied having an affair in court papers.

Divorced 2022!!!!

posts: 1275   ·   registered: Jul. 25th, 2018   ·   location: Canada
id 8748529
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