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Newest Member: lrpprl

Reconciliation :
Do you ever regain pride in the relationship?

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Knitaknee ( new member #71772) posted at 6:56 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

I used to be very proud of my wife. I felt she was worth the wait (married when I was 30) and I had dedicated Robert Cray's "Laugh Out Loud" to her and our marriage. I thought she made me a better person and I would welcome the opportunity to introduce her to friends and coworkers.

Since her affair, I don't see her as the kind, Christian, selfless woman she claims to be. I see her as fake. I've realized that many people that have met her do not like her because she is condescending (seems she's gotten that way since her affair). I realize I'm the better person. I'm genuine, devoted, caring, faithful, Christian. I don't invite her to work functions or to stop by the office. I rarely mention her in conversations. I don't consider her a prize anymore.

We've passed our 25th anniversary, 5 years post DDay. Since her affair, I don't post celebratory FB news of our anniversary, her birthday, or what a great partner she is. Right now I live day to day but don't see a future with us together once the youngest is out of the house. I used to think I was lucky.

posts: 40   ·   registered: Oct. 7th, 2019   ·   location: Alabama
id 8747413
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waitedwaytoolong ( member #51519) posted at 8:08 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

I sometimes wonder if it would have been different if the Affair had not occurred in your house.

Hard to say. I think it was a culmination of everything. The fact it was in the house was bad, but so were the acts they did, as well as the fact she let me meet with him to pitch me a project that could have tied us to him for years.

Of all the things the house aspect would have been the easiest to fix. She wanted to sell it after d day for a new start, but I was too stubborn. Really stupid on my part. I remember the day I moved out was like dropping a hundred pound boulder I was carrying around

Meg Meg, totally get what you are saying. We would go to dinners who didn’t know and they would gush about how lucky I was to have such an amazing wife. I could see the fear in her eyes as I clammed up clenching and her knowing the next few days were going to be rough

[This message edited by waitedwaytoolong at 8:13 PM, Wednesday, July 27th]

I am the cliched husband whose wife had an affair with the electrician

Divorced

posts: 1907   ·   registered: Jan. 26th, 2016
id 8747422
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Fof9303 ( member #70433) posted at 8:22 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

I feel sometimes we overthink things way too much and sometimes these forums give us even more things to think about then we normally would. lol. Someone told me... after I decided to reconcile... how proud they were of me.. Maybe nobody has told you that.. so here it is... You should be so proud for taking the chance.. taking that chance to work on and stay in love with the one you married.. proud that the worst pain that you ever felt was the one who was supposed to heal your hurts but you are forging on and making it work anyway. So today, be proud... be proud of yourself and be proud of your marriage that even though it has been fractured.. you can make it look different and new again. God bless.

posts: 138   ·   registered: Apr. 27th, 2019
id 8747428
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 BreakingBad (original poster member #75779) posted at 9:00 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

I really appreciate everyone who has weighed in with their experience and perspective.
From This0is0Fine

it's not really fair to have pride in your relationship because you are only responsible for half of it. You should have pride in how you have behaved in your relationship.

I see the truth in this, because this view also acknowledges that one partner isn't at fault for relationship failure if the other person single-handedly exits (emotionally, physically, etc.) or just fails to maintain their end.

Yet, I also have felt pride in being a part of larger musical ensembles. When things go well in a collective musical effort, the sum seems greater than any individual part, and I guess I've seen marriage like this. Yes, i only contribute my part, but I still felt pride in the combined whole when we were both contributing well. The sum did seem greater than the parts. Maybe this is related to the "relationship calculus" that goes something like this: one key to a happy relationship isn't when each partner gives 50%, but when both partners feel like they are giving about 70%. (A nugget of wisdom my great uncle shared at his 50th anniversary party as my great aunt sat on his lap.)

Yet, I do understand that the center of your post is that I can only control my part of the relationship. I totally agree with this.

"Don't you love it, don't you love it?
No, I ain't happy yet.
But I'm way less sad."[Credit to group AJR]

Me=BW; fWH=online affairs with 3 APs over 2.5-3 yrs
Both in IC & MC
Married 31 yrs now
2 kids-both in HS
Attempting R

posts: 179   ·   registered: Oct. 31st, 2020
id 8747431
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 BreakingBad (original poster member #75779) posted at 9:27 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

getbusyliving

I just don't say anything much about our relationship anymore...

This is the same "ah-ha" moment I had that made me realize that I'd lost pride in the relationship (even wondering if I'm a bit embarrassed to have stayed) and wondered if pride would ever be regained.

Grieving

At this point, I mostly hang on to the practical, concrete goods that I can identify. We still parent as a team easily and work together super well. We still enjoy each other’s company, share common interests, and like doing things together. We still have mutually satisfying sex...

Yep, I really relate to this. It sums up a lot about where we are at right now. I just want to believe that time and continued work--on both our parts--will result in getting to a better point.

OldWounds

Overall, I am very proud of us.

It isn’t perfect, it never was, but there is something about not giving up on each other or what we want out our relationship....I’m proud of fighting for the marriage we BOTH wanted and found a way to get it, despite the horror show.

This post gives me hope (just hope...not "hopium" smile ) that it is possible. I don't know if we'll get there, but nice to know it's possible.

Yet, from the posts so far, odds don't seem to be in favor of this outcome.

I'm a a hard worker, persistent, and an optimist. Because of these traits, I have to check in a lot with myself about also being willing to walk away if that action is truly in my own best interests. I have gotten better at not leading/managing my fWH's work and being honest (with him and with myself) about judging by his actions and not his words.

Right now, the work is still difficult and the conversations challenging, but it is going well.


[Edited to fix punctuation]

[This message edited by BreakingBad at 9:29 PM, Wednesday, July 27th]

"Don't you love it, don't you love it?
No, I ain't happy yet.
But I'm way less sad."[Credit to group AJR]

Me=BW; fWH=online affairs with 3 APs over 2.5-3 yrs
Both in IC & MC
Married 31 yrs now
2 kids-both in HS
Attempting R

posts: 179   ·   registered: Oct. 31st, 2020
id 8747434
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 BreakingBad (original poster member #75779) posted at 9:34 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

WhiteCarrera

I was proud of what we had; believed we had something unique, truly a situation where 1 + 1 equaled something more than just 2. Now it's just "good" and like Breachoftrust said, "I mean, I could have our relationship with anyone and it would be mostly the same." I agree with this so much. Now it's just 1+1 = 2 (no more, no less)


Ah, this really nails the relationship calculus I referred to in my previous post. It seemed like 1+1 equaled more than 2 for me as well.

Now, I'm waiting to see if we can get there again...or, if we can't, if I can live with the more basic equation. Jury is still out.

"Don't you love it, don't you love it?
No, I ain't happy yet.
But I'm way less sad."[Credit to group AJR]

Me=BW; fWH=online affairs with 3 APs over 2.5-3 yrs
Both in IC & MC
Married 31 yrs now
2 kids-both in HS
Attempting R

posts: 179   ·   registered: Oct. 31st, 2020
id 8747435
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 BreakingBad (original poster member #75779) posted at 9:58 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

As you can see from my stacked reply posts, I'm responding as a read and re-read. Just finally got the time and energy to respond today.

Tushnurse and Want2BHappyAgain, I appreciate you weighing in that it IS possible to regain pride and joy in the relationship.

Both of your views align with my perspective about people and life. People are flawed and life is tough (brutal), but acknowledging the efforts of flawed people to regain their center and stand again (alone or or in the marriage) is to be celebrated!

Fof9303

Maybe nobody has told you that.. so here it is... You should be so proud for taking the chance.. taking that chance to work on and stay in love with the one you married.. proud that the worst pain that you ever felt was the one who was supposed to heal your hurts but you are forging on and making it work anyway. So today, be proud... be proud of yourself and be proud of your marriage that even though it has been fractured.. you can make it look different and new again. God bless.

Just...wow. Brings tears to my eyes every time I read it, so it was definitely something I needed to hear. Thanks for being that person in my path today.

Betrayal is brutal, and I support the very personal and difficult decisions we have all had to make about staying, separating, implementing any version of a 180, or divorcing. In all choices, we have to heal ourselves.

I appreciate each person who has taken time to reflect on their own journey and weigh in. Each of you gives me food for thought and builds me up.

"Don't you love it, don't you love it?
No, I ain't happy yet.
But I'm way less sad."[Credit to group AJR]

Me=BW; fWH=online affairs with 3 APs over 2.5-3 yrs
Both in IC & MC
Married 31 yrs now
2 kids-both in HS
Attempting R

posts: 179   ·   registered: Oct. 31st, 2020
id 8747441
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Grieving ( member #79540) posted at 11:33 PM on Wednesday, July 27th, 2022

I really appreciate reading these reflections, too. WhiteCarerra’s 1+1=2 thoughts sum up my experience at the present time. But I’m hopeful that I’ll get that musical ensemble feeling back at some point. I don’t know if that’s hopium or not.

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 8747450
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emergent8 ( member #58189) posted at 12:03 AM on Friday, July 29th, 2022

I have pride in my relationship.

We have been through a lot and have worked too hard for me to not feel proud of us.

I used to have pride in my relationship and it was different than the pride I have now. Not better/worse, perhaps more naive. I know more now. Our relationship is both stronger and, at the same time, more fragile than I thought it was.

Me: BS, Him: WS. Mid-late 30s.
Together 15 years, married 6 (11 m at D-Day).
D-Day: Feb 2017 (8 m PA with married COW).
5 years (and two toddlers) into R. Happy.

posts: 960   ·   registered: Apr. 7th, 2017
id 8747571
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Seeking2Forgive ( member #78819) posted at 7:01 AM on Saturday, July 30th, 2022

I was proud of our relationship in part because I had delusions of what it was. That was partly my own naive view of things but also because so many friends and family told us how great it was. Nobody else married 20 years was so close or loving, they would say. When people would ask the secret I would tell them it was love, complete trust, and completely open communication. I really thought that we had a very special relationship: Love, Twoo Love. I thought we shared that feeling.

But the truth is that I was just very committed to her happiness. Much more than she was to mine. And very few people can keep up the pace on that treadmill forever. Especially when the subject of their devotion has problems with self-esteem or self-validation.

For years after the A I was proud of the fact that I had stayed true to that notion of love and that I had and fought for the marriage. But I also battled the shame and humiliation that I allowed myself to be used and abused that way, all for a notion of love that she only shared as long as it suited her.

Now after rehashing it all 20 years later to figure out why it was bothering me again, I understand that a lot of what I gave myself credit for, but was also ashamed of, was my just response to the trauma of betrayal. I couldn't imagine life without my only source of support so I clung to her desperately. And I loved her. I still give myself some credit for that even if I didn't really know who she was at that time.

Now, I'm proud of the fact that in spite of everything we still love each other and we're still committed and working through whatever issues arise. I'm still sometimes angry at the past, and still sometimes frustrated with the present, but we're working through it.

Me: 60, BS -- Her: 59, FWS -- Dday: 11/15/03 -- Married 37 yrs -- Reconciled

posts: 419   ·   registered: May. 18th, 2021
id 8747747
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Oldwounds ( member #54486) posted at 6:54 PM on Saturday, July 30th, 2022

Hey BB -

This post gives me hope (just hope...not "hopium" smile ) that it is possible. I don't know if we'll get there, but nice to know it's possible.

Yet, from the posts so far, odds don't seem to be in favor of this outcome.

I'm a a hard worker, persistent, and an optimist. Because of these traits, I have to check in a lot with myself about also being willing to walk away if that action is truly in my own best interests. I have gotten better at not leading/managing my fWH's work and being honest (with him and with myself) about judging by his actions and not his words.

Right now, the work is still difficult and the conversations challenging, but it is going well.

Well, two keys you mentioned here regarding building the type of R you want — honesty and hard work. It takes a great of both.

And you mentioned the odds.

Based on divorce rates, the stories here where most folks either don’t try R at all or spend YEARS in limbo, I knew it was uphill going in.

That said, building something stronger on the other side of this traumatic adversity, against all of those odds do seem show something else contributing to the pride I have about where my wife and I are now. We went from not sure our M was even viable, burned down to the foundation — to the massive work to create the relationship we always wanted, is an accomplishment.

As with most things people build in this world, there is some pride in that.

I hope (not hopium) you continue to fight for a relationship worthy of you.

[This message edited by Oldwounds at 6:54 PM, Saturday, July 30th]

Married 34+ years, together 40+ years
Two awesome adult sons.
Dday 6/16 4-year LTA Survived
Restoration takes time.
"Circumstances don't make the man, they only reveal him to himself." ― Epictetus

posts: 4371   ·   registered: Aug. 4th, 2016   ·   location: PNW. The adventure continues.
id 8747777
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Grieving ( member #79540) posted at 12:53 PM on Sunday, July 31st, 2022

I am heartened by those of you who are proud of what you’ve built in the aftermath of betrayal. I hope for that some day, and it sounds much more realistic than getting back the romantic sense of my marriage that I had before my husband’s affair.

Fof9303, I also appreciated your encouragement to be proud of ourselves. That I can muster some days.

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 8747814
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The1stWife ( member #58832) posted at 2:37 PM on Sunday, July 31st, 2022

Yes. You can choose to live in the past or truly recognize the positive changes that have come out of the R process.

If your M is better in some way, celebrate it.

If not, I’m sorry that did not happen for you.

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 12308   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8747818
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BellaLee ( member #58324) posted at 5:50 PM on Sunday, July 31st, 2022

Hi @BreakingBad I'm so sorry you've had to go through the pain of betrayal, a path no one should have to walk and my heart goes out to you.
In my own reflection to your question, I will say I am grateful for the newness and healing that has occurred in my marriage and I'm proud that we chose the path of R as hard as it was, proud that we both overcame something that was meant to destroy our marriage and on our journey of R, learnt about the redeeming power of love.

So I just want to encourage you that you can be proud that you are getting stronger everyday and my prayer for you is that the near future bring complete healing for your emotions and true and lasting R for your marriage.

posts: 213   ·   registered: Apr. 18th, 2017
id 8747833
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Omnipicus ( new member #79316) posted at 2:53 AM on Monday, August 8th, 2022

I hope to one day say that my marriage was not perfect but I’m proud that both of us didn’t give up on each other and worked hard to make our marriage fulfilling.

Bc let’s be honest folks. Most marriages have scars. That’s why half of them don’t work out.

This isn’t a Disney movie. There is no "happily ever after" and poof your marriage is perfect.

Marriage is hard bc life is hard.

posts: 35   ·   registered: Aug. 23rd, 2021
id 8748645
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