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Newest Member: LoisPerry3

Just Found Out :
H is a complete stranger with a second life.

Topic is Sleeping.
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The1stWife ( Guide #58832) posted at 9:29 AM on Tuesday, May 2nd, 2023

I hope you feel you took a positive step for yourself in filing for D. This becomes your path out of infidelity and to move forward with your life.

I know how painful this period is for you. I think the comment I made about the 37 pages was misunderstood. My thought was that you can get bogged down in the details and hurt and pain of it all, but sometimes you have to take a step back and do something for yourself to start to heal yourself and I was afraid that was not going to happen.

I obviously didn’t make my thoughts clear and I apologize that it came off rather snarky or mean. Never my intent to insult anyone — I just have seen people remain stuck in a warp (completely expected btw given the circumstances).

I know I made some mistakes in life but the one thing I learned was that remaining in a bad relationship without doing something to help yourself is worse than the bad relationship.

I am glad to see you took a step forward. I’m sorry it has to be to file for D and that was your only option, but your mental health is more important than anything and I am glad you made a decision in your best interest.

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled. 10 years out from Dday. Reconciliation takes two committed people to be successful.

posts: 13799   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8789231
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 Sigyn (original poster member #80576) posted at 2:27 PM on Monday, May 8th, 2023

I'm glad to hear you have filed. I get to file in July (we have to wait 12m here in Australia). Dumb question though, has your WH reacted to this at all, or has he accepted this reality?

I'm sorry they make you wait, that's excruciating when you just want to move on. I hope your wife is a lot more even-keeled about it since she's already apparently moved on and you live separately and have split some of the finances. Have you two talked about the specifics of the divorce beyond that?

WH is so far in complete disbelief, he's convinced I'm "scamming" him, tricking him, deceiving him and manipulating him, convinced that I've planned to leave him for years, that I don't care about our son's emotions or future, he's obsessed with the marital home and his things and wants to walk through the house with witnesses and take video inventory (this is where I start fantasizing his box of anal sex toys, lube and men's lingerie and bondage-wear will make a fantastic installation art piece), he's 'worried about me' and sending my family emails implying he's scared there's something deeply wrong with me and how concerned he is, as if this has come out of the clear blue sky and I'm inexplicably trying to exit a long term beautiful marriage. He's also still sending me emails and written letters about his childhood and telling me how I have never truly understood how much it has affected him and his 'behavior' and that he thought his own wife would be the one to listen and help him through it, implying I'm failing in my role as wife. Just... ugliness. I thought I might feel some kind of relief that I'd made a choice and started to move forward but instead it's so much more pain.

posts: 120   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2022
id 8790075
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Edie ( member #26133) posted at 2:37 PM on Monday, May 8th, 2023

Oh my goodness, Sigyn, I’m very sorry to read about that bombardment of artillery aimed at your conscience and guilt. Hopefully, though, it (the whining, self-justificatIon, mistaking you for a parent etc) is having the opposite effect and is fortifying your resolve.

Maybe a long walk in the Hindu Kush would do it?
BW (me) 52
FWS 55
Together 29 years; 2 kids 15 & 12
Dday Dec 08 (confessed) R'd.

posts: 6632   ·   registered: Nov. 9th, 2009   ·   location: Europe
id 8790077
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leafields ( Guide #63517) posted at 2:51 PM on Monday, May 8th, 2023

So sorry he's being such a POS to you, Sygn. He's projecting some of his emotions onto you (scamming, planning to leave for years) but those are his. He is mad because he is losing control. His behavior may escalate. You can have your attorney contact his, or even do a cease & desist if things get really bad.

What about having a third-party videographer come by, or a photographer? Get pictures of his things. Of course, the piece de resistance could be the box of toys.

Sending you mojo.

BW M 34years, Dday 1: March 2018, Dday 2: August 2019, D final 2/25/21

posts: 3128   ·   registered: Apr. 21st, 2018   ·   location: Washington State
id 8790080
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Belle25 ( member #63676) posted at 3:59 PM on Monday, May 8th, 2023

I strongly believe that he needs to have ties with your family cut. I get that he doesn't have one and they adopted him, but his contact (and the content of the contact) is incredibly inappropriate, given everything. He does not get to use up some of their energy that should be focused on supporting YOU. He made many, many choices that got him here, and honestly, his closeness with your family makes what he did even worse. He betrayed them as well. They need to tell him where to shove his "concern". I know you were considering sharing more of the situation with them. Seems that that would be beneficial, if you haven't yet.

I'm delighted to hear that you filed. I truly believe that you are going to come out of this in the end and feel happy and free. It's a ways to get there, but it's worth it. You and your son are going to be just fine.

posts: 64   ·   registered: May. 3rd, 2018
id 8790085
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 Sigyn (original poster member #80576) posted at 4:12 PM on Monday, May 8th, 2023

Thanks everyone, I simultaneously want to post every detail here and am also sickened when I sit with my screen open and start typing it out. I can't get over being ashamed of him, ashamed of us and what we've become. I don't want anyone else to have gone through this, but I also rely on you all to tell me you've been through it and understand. I feel like I'm radioactive in my home life. My friends and family are all such good people and I've got this ugliness spilling out on all sides.

It's a good idea about taking a video myself. Luckily we actually have an inventory of most of our possessions since we switched home owners insurance recently and it was one of the recommendations! It's not video, just a spreadsheet, and I've given it to my attorney at her request before we filed, but a dated video is a good call just to show that most of the things are still present and accounted for aside from the things WH has taken for his rental.

I'm torn on the family thing but not for the reasons I had last time (maybe still a little actually) - I get a lot of info about where WH's head is from them, and by talking to him they feel like they're helping me. This is my parents and my other siblings, WH knows how close my one sister and I are and he has only really tried to plead his case to her husband, not to her. The thought of disclosing more to the family is still weighing on me.

The amount of emotional distress and work and therapy for me and our son and attorneys and appointments is unbelievable.

posts: 120   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2022
id 8790086
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WonderingGhost ( member #81060) posted at 4:51 PM on Monday, May 8th, 2023

Hey @Sigyn, I truly empathize with your hesitance to disclose the full ugly picture to your friends and family. For some reason as BS's we feel like the actions of our WS's reflect poorly on us. Maybe we feel ashamed or embarrassed that something so cruel and awful could happen to us, or perhaps we're still trying to protect our WS's from the consequences of their own actions.

Let me say this though, your WH sounds unhinged. I would not be comfortable with my family viewing someone like that in a positive light, let alone trying to be a support for them. If you were to tell your family the full scope of your WH's double life and they decide to still try and be there for him, well..That will probably prompt another discussion. Perhaps after that they would still try to talk to him in order to relay info to you in a more strategic way and less of a "supporting poor WH because he has no one else" way.

I'm imagining if you were my sister. I'm the eldest so I feel very protective of my siblings. I would 1000% want to know the scope of my sister's WH's affair. I would feel gross still supporting him if he had done to my sister what your WH has done to you. It would also prompt me to be more aware of any manipulation tactics the WH would potentially try to pull on me.

I would suggest you try to continue and detach from your WH as best as you can. I believe you've said your family is the closest support system he has? There's obviously a reason for that, he's a crappy person. Normal, empathetic people like you feel bad for others who seem to be alone or have no support network. But you need to consider some people don't have others that are close to them precisely because they are toxic, awful people. Your WH had no problem manipulating you to the extent he has, he will have no problem doing the same to your family. Sending strength to you.

EDIT: Wanted to add that all of the letters and emails your WH has been sending is just such obvious projection and DARVO'ing it's sad. Again, this man looks to be a master manipulator and I wouldn't be surprised if he goes to even more extreme lengths to twist the narrative in his favour. I'm still very much of the mind that you should disclose the extent of your WH's affair to your family so they at least know what they're dealing with.

[This message edited by WonderingGhost at 5:06 PM, Monday, May 8th]

posts: 108   ·   registered: Oct. 1st, 2022
id 8790090
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CometGirl ( member #56179) posted at 4:53 PM on Monday, May 8th, 2023

Does he know that you know the extent of his cheating? Years and all his kinks? Just think it’s crazy that he blames you when his cheating is so extensive and extreme.

posts: 104   ·   registered: Nov. 28th, 2016
id 8790091
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VezfromTaz ( member #80815) posted at 8:49 AM on Tuesday, May 9th, 2023

As a DV lawyer and victim of narcissistic abuse, I recommend you stop any direct communication other than through a parenting app like Our Family Wizard in respect of your child or through your lawyer to negotiate arrangements. There is no benefit whatsoever, even from a safety point of view for your child, in you communicating directly with him other than perhaps in an emergency relating to your child. If your ex is having unsupervised contact with your son, make sure your child has a safety plan. This can be a casual conversation like checking he knows who to call if he is worried (my son has kids messenger). Document everything. Get your attorney's advice and use him or her to buffer you from your ex. You didnt cause this, but it is the reality of the situation he has put you in. I hope he is just a cowardly blowhard trying it on rather than unsafe.
People are at their worst in times of stress and it might be time to rip the bandaid off once and for all.

posts: 130   ·   registered: Sep. 1st, 2022
id 8790182
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realitybites ( member #6908) posted at 1:08 PM on Tuesday, May 9th, 2023

he's 'worried about me' and sending my family emails implying he's scared there's something deeply wrong with me and how concerned he is, as if this has come out of the clear blue sky and I'm inexplicably trying to exit a long term beautiful marriage. He's also still sending me emails and written letters about his childhood and telling me how I have never truly understood how much it has affected him and his 'behavior' and that he thought his own wife would be the one to listen and help him through it, implying I'm failing in my role as wife. Just... ugliness.

It is so abusive what he is now doing to you - how he is the "victim" in all of this. It's truly crazy making stuff.

You find out he has lived a whole separate "double" life with multiple sex partners and just some really kinky stuff that he hid from you FOR YEARS, yet when you find out, which has devastated you and thrown your whole world upside down, he goes into a tale spin of "lie, deny and clam up" so you finally after a lot of painful discovery decide you want to leave him and ask for a divorce and he ramps up the crazy even more and tries to make you look bad to your family and then also try to twist the story and create an alternate reality to the outside world.

Its painful. Not only to find out about infidelity, but what the horrible journey is like for a BS who tries to GET AWAY from the madness. And they still keep abusing you, attacking you. Truly painful to find out how really mentally "sick" they are and how you/we were just a tool they used to keep up the life they were trying to hide from the world. So sorry that it continues for you.

[This message edited by realitybites at 1:13 PM, Tuesday, May 9th]

Stop expecting loyalty from people who cannot even give you honesty.

He stopped being my husband the first time he cheated. It took me awhile to understand that I was no longer his wife.

posts: 6939   ·   registered: Apr. 16th, 2005   ·   location: florida
id 8790199
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redrock ( member #21538) posted at 12:45 AM on Wednesday, May 10th, 2023

You aren’t radioactive!!!!!!!!!!

As much as you wish to protect those you are close to from the fallout of his chaotic face saving, your silence is not going to keep your H from pushing his narrative on your family, friends and community.

You don’t have to share details. The beautiful marriage he keeps referring to was a fraud on his part. He found and paid for girlfriends from the jump, stole your agency, and by lies of omission forced you to live in a one sided open marriage. FOR DECADES. You have decided to exit to live authentically. It could be more vague and tighter if you prefer, but take his emoting pity party stage away.

Think about it this way… do you want anyone drawn in by his requests for ‘help and concern’ to be acting on his behalf in some manner? Not that they will, but who knows….

No one has to confront him. Your family will rally to you and that is not unfair. Give them an opportunity to support you. It is hard to set boundaries in a void. It’s okay to for your family to make you and your son their priority.

My parents weren’t very much emotional support to me but they sure knew how to put a to do list together and get it done. My mom is an ex ER nurse and she can communicate more disdain with a raised eyebrow than I could in 1000 words. She never said one word to my H about his cheating but he felt her meaning none the less.

It’s okay to have a team Sigyn.

If WH valued the beautiful marriage or his found family he would have made different choices. He didn’t and doesn’t. By his own actions as he reveals daily his priorities are his image/reputation.

Sending hugs.

I don't respect anyone that can't spell a word more than one way:)

posts: 3523   ·   registered: Nov. 6th, 2008   ·   location: Michigan
id 8790270
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leafields ( Guide #63517) posted at 5:26 AM on Wednesday, May 10th, 2023

Your STBXWH feeds off of any response. NC or grey rock really are the worst punishment that can be done to him. Any show of emotion is like blood to a shark.

[This message edited by leafields at 5:19 PM, Tuesday, May 23rd]

BW M 34years, Dday 1: March 2018, Dday 2: August 2019, D final 2/25/21

posts: 3128   ·   registered: Apr. 21st, 2018   ·   location: Washington State
id 8790282
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Hurthalo ( member #41782) posted at 7:30 AM on Wednesday, May 10th, 2023

Bloody hell Sigyn, your ex-WH would have to be one of the worst exponents of grandiose narcissism I think I've ever heard of. I physically nearly snorted laughing at your plans for an exhibition/shrine to his 'equipment' in the house for his visit. Pure comedy gold!

I'm sorry they make you wait, that's excruciating when you just want to move on. I hope your wife is a lot more even-keeled about it since she's already apparently moved on and you live separately and have split some of the finances. Have you two talked about the specifics of the divorce beyond that?

I admit I am somewhat lucky in that regard in that my ex-WW has accepted her behaviour and the subsequent consequences of that behaviour. Well, she has somewhat. I think she still remains genuinely shocked that I went NC with her. In her head she truly believes that we should all be best friends going forward, and I think I have 'disappointed' her in reinforcing that screwing two married men and leaving me to pick up the pieces means she doesn't get my time anymore.

I can't get over being ashamed of him, ashamed of us and what we've become. I don't want anyone else to have gone through this, but I also rely on you all to tell me you've been through it and understand. I feel like I'm radioactive in my home life. My friends and family are all such good people and I've got this ugliness spilling out on all sides.

I have taken this really personally as well. I am still shocked that this has happened and I am very angry that I am forced to be in this position. I don't want to be divorced. I didn't ask to be divorced. While I am handling everything well so far, there is a nagging weight hanging around my neck that I am now alone and dealing with it all. I have no one to bounce responsibility or shared parenting tribulation off of, and it hurts. Especially when, and I assume you are in the same position, had absolutely zero indication that life was going to end up this way; nor any glaring red flags that our marriages were going south.

He's also still sending me emails and written letters about his childhood and telling me how I have never truly understood how much it has affected him and his 'behavior' and that he thought his own wife would be the one to listen and help him through it, implying I'm failing in my role as wife.

Absolutely ridiculous. Narcissism in the extreme. A functioning adult should have been able to work out that engaging in such extreme behaviour is not remotely morally acceptable. And how the hell did he expect you to 'help him through it', when as I recall correctly, he was boasting to his hedonism bum chums that he was 'hiding it and getting away with it?'

He's 'worried about me' and sending my family emails implying he's scared there's something deeply wrong with me and how concerned he is, as if this has come out of the clear blue sky and I'm inexplicably trying to exit a long term beautiful marriage.

Bloody hell, Tom Cruise wept. It's time your family got the full low-down of what he has done. I'm toying with this exact scenario at the moment, and while my ex-WW hasn't tried to blade me to her family, what is readily apparent is that I am 'on the outer' with them for some reason - presumably because their conservatism would dictate that 'I didn't do enough to keep the marriage together following me finding out about her affair and not giving their daughter a chance.' They don't know that she actually had two affairs, and that she is now dating the second AP whom was married at the time. I am pretty sure even they would go nuclear over that one, and in my eyes, it may help vindicate myself in regards to their thoughts on the divorce.

I have mulled and mulled over this one as things have been relatively 'amicable' between my ex-WW and I in regards to settlement, and I have actually gotten the best out of what could have been a really crap situation in regards to finances. I remain financially in a great position, thank God. She hasn't bad-mouthed me (that I know of) to anyone in our circle. But the sheer injustice I feel keeps screaming at me to tell her family the full story. I mean, the one AP story is bad enough admittedly, but still.

In your case, it doesn't seem like he's even going to try and make an effort to be civil. And noting he's now implying that there might be something wrong with you, I think it's time you possibly took control of the narrative and outed him accordingly. At no surprise to yourself, narcissists are extremely manipulative and more than happy to paint someone as the villain to avoid bruising their own portrayed image, and he is following this role with wanton vigour.

His actions aren't a reflection on you Sigyn. I NEVER thought my wife would cheat again after the lessons learned from a decade ago. I was dead wrong. And I have reached the point where I non longer let it reflect on me. We did our best in our marriages. Your husband needs to take a leaf out of Prospero's book in Shakespeare's 'The Tempest' and utter, 'this thing of darkness, I acknowledge as mine.'

[This message edited by Hurthalo at 7:34 AM, Wednesday, May 10th]

posts: 301   ·   registered: Dec. 26th, 2013   ·   location: Australia
id 8790286
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VezfromTaz ( member #80815) posted at 12:04 PM on Wednesday, May 10th, 2023

I've been thinking about my own "trauma response style" for want of a better phrase, and there is a lot of discourse at the moment about the fawn response to trauma (mostly in the context of sexual assault victims but can apply to any sort of abuse). It might be good to unpack this a bit with your therapist as it might inform how you respond to ex's behaviour moving forward. It is so hard to unlearn behaviours/responses that we see as integral and likeable parts of who we are.

posts: 130   ·   registered: Sep. 1st, 2022
id 8790292
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Cooley2here ( member #62939) posted at 1:24 PM on Wednesday, May 10th, 2023

I think a simple, "He decided years ago that cheating multiple times is a way of life that I can’t live with. I prefer to not go into the gory details."
And leave it there. People who want the details want a good gossip topic.

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

posts: 4151   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8790295
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 Sigyn (original poster member #80576) posted at 6:25 PM on Thursday, May 11th, 2023

For some reason as BS's we feel like the actions of our WS's reflect poorly on us. Maybe we feel ashamed or embarrassed that something so cruel and awful could happen to us, or perhaps we're still trying to protect our WS's from the consequences of their own actions.

I think I'm used to thinking about my marriage as a reflection of "us", and I know this is weird but I feel like his sex life was therefore part of our marital sex life, a part I didn't consent to but that passively happened to me against my will. Talking about it is so painful and also so humiliating. I can't tell my elderly parents anything about that aspect of it though, "he was unfaithful" was about as much detail as they can really take. But I can tell them that it was pervasive throughout our entire marriage, extensive in terms of the numbers, and 'expensive' - and I hope the mention of money will fill in that part of the picture. I don't think my parents and family see him in a positive light, but they do think he recognizes that he's done something wrong. They don't know - yet - that he doesn't think what he did was wrong at all. So I will also tell them that he bragged about it, and told me and others (because this is true) that he feels deeply that his cheating reflected who he really is inside, that he's not monogamous at heart. My one close sister is actually helping me with this by filling in a few more details with my other siblings lately. I think she's being blunt and I cannot say how excruciating that is and how grateful I am not to have to be the one to tell them some of the worst of what I know. barf

He's projecting some of his emotions onto you (scamming, planning to leave for years) but those are his. He is mad because he is losing control. His behavior may escalate. You can have your attorney contact his, or even do a cease & desist if things get really bad.

Oh gosh absolutely! I can't believe how clearly I can see his projection now! And also the massive entitlement, to have his marriage remain intact regardless of what he's done. And now that I'm trying to take "his" marriage away, I'm tricking him out of something he deserves to have - the marital home, his wife and son constantly there for him, my family surrounding him as if they're his family, all his material things surrounding him AND his other women, sex dungeons, prostitutes and online cheating community. I'm now the bad guy because I'm trying to take that perfect life away from him, the one where he's the center of the universe and everyone else is a bit player.

Does he know that you know the extent of his cheating? Years and all his kinks? Just think it’s crazy that he blames you when his cheating is so extensive and extreme.

I don't know how much I do know! He definitely knows I know about the sex workers because I've asked him about that extensively and he himself offered up the estimate of "30 or 40" in terms of how many different sex workers he saw, and he knows I know about the OW he called girlfriends because I've also told him that, and that they extended back to the place we lived for 3 years when we first got married - I haven't told him one of his OW contacted me, I haven't told him I have screenshots of their videos (I told him I've seen pictures though, when I was trying to get him to confess to various things) and I haven't told him I found his gross stash of mens lingerie and latex bondage gear and massive dildo collection and sex club cards in the basement.

He doesn't seem to blame me for his cheating, like at all, which is bewildering. I've read other people here talk about blame shifting and unmet needs, but WH has actually told me (and told his OW!) he was very happy in our marriage. He blames me for not helping him deal with his childhood issues which he claims are responsible for his behavior throughout our marriage. He blames me for not 'giving him a chance' and not going to therapy with him and not treating his cheating as if it were an illness. He thinks his sick behavior is the 'in sickness and in health' we vowed to stay with each other through, and that I'm letting him down when he needs me the most! I'm not kidding, that's what I'm at fault for!! He has said multiple times "just when I needed you the most, you're attacking me and then deserting me!" And I think he phrases it that way because I've always been SO FOCUSED on him, his needs, our marriage. It's like I'm a malfunctioning wife-bot that was supposed to be preforming based on a code and I've somehow glitched and gone rogue.

I recommend you stop any direct communication other than through a parenting app like Our Family Wizard in respect of your child or through your lawyer to negotiate arrangements. There is no benefit whatsoever, even from a safety point of view for your child, in you communicating directly with him other than perhaps in an emergency relating to your child. If your ex is having unsupervised contact with your son, make sure your child has a safety plan.

My attorney said the same thing and I told her I didn't think it was at that stage, but she told me it's not a stage I want to get to and then try to react to but more of a stage that prevents things from getting uglier. Hearing her say that and then seeing you write it makes me feel like it must be true, but I still can't wrap my head around how contentious this makes everything seem! I have no ability to know if I'm overreacting out of pain, or if he's really got the potential to escalate. I trust my team (you guys are part of my team btw) more than I trust myself when it comes to predictions, because I've been wrong almost every single time and everyone else has sadly nailed most of his next moves.

I think she still remains genuinely shocked that I went NC with her. In her head she truly believes that we should all be best friends going forward, and I think I have 'disappointed' her in reinforcing that screwing two married men and leaving me to pick up the pieces means she doesn't get my time anymore.

When I read back over some of my earlier posts here I actually asked whether our WS had a escape plan for if they got caught, and everyone assured me that they were generally so steeped in fantasy-land that they had no realistic thoughts at all about what life would look like when/if they were found out. Your ex wife's expectations is such a good illustration of that, holy crap! Like maybe you and a new partner and your ex and one of her partners will all double date when the divorce is finalized? There's no recognition at all that what she did was ALSO fundamentally against the boundaries for engaging in friendships? The lies, the lack of respect, the deceit?


have mulled and mulled over this one as things have been relatively 'amicable' between my ex-WW and I in regards to settlement, and I have actually gotten the best out of what could have been a really crap situation in regards to finances. I remain financially in a great position, thank God. She hasn't bad-mouthed me (that I know of) to anyone in our circle. But the sheer injustice I feel keeps screaming at me to tell her family the full story. I mean, the one AP story is bad enough admittedly, but still.

I'm in no position to be dishing out advice, but if you're walking into the divorce with her head in a cloud and the finances agreed upon and no smear campaigns from her yet I'd be tempted to let things stay that way until the divorce is signed 'amicably' and then expose her. But I'm saying that while also being hesitant to expose my WH even within my own family, let alone to friends or anyone in his social circle.

posts: 120   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2022
id 8790488
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Hurthalo ( member #41782) posted at 8:31 AM on Friday, May 12th, 2023

I'm in no position to be dishing out advice, but if you're walking into the divorce with her head in a cloud and the finances agreed upon and no smear campaigns from her yet I'd be tempted to let things stay that way until the divorce is signed 'amicably' and then expose her. But I'm saying that while also being hesitant to expose my WH even within my own family, let alone to friends or anyone in his social circle.

I'm leaning towards this line of thinking exactly.

When I read back over some of my earlier posts here I actually asked whether our WS had a escape plan for if they got caught, and everyone assured me that they were generally so steeped in fantasy-land that they had no realistic thoughts at all about what life would look like when/if they were found out. Your ex wife's expectations is such a good illustration of that, holy crap! Like maybe you and a new partner and your ex and one of her partners will all double date when the divorce is finalized? There's no recognition at all that what she did was ALSO fundamentally against the boundaries for engaging in friendships? The lies, the lack of respect, the deceit?

In the case of our respective exes, I don't think they did either. She openly admits she 'didn't want a divorce' and apropos of nothing, my kids have told me 'Mummy said she didn't want to get divorced'. I just don't know what she/they were thinking in this regard. My occupation literally rotates around investigations and analysis - it was just a matter of time before I realised what was going on. As for your ex-WH, he seemed like he was so blatant about it that I reckon he actually fooled himself into believing that his downfall was never going to come. Perhaps a sense of cavalier apathy set in?

Regardless of all this, how are you feeling about everything Sigyn? By my reckoning it's about 10 months out (mine was within a week or two of yours from memory), regardless of his actions, are you feeling any manner of inner peace? I have found the pleasant tang of slight indifference to my ex is now starting to creep in, to the point where I could almost talk to her about the kids instead of doing it all over text. Not saying I want to, but I could - simply because I am realising that the further I detach from her, the uglier I realise she is as a human being. Which saddens me, because all of the attributes I was attracted to her for are still there; they are just completely over-shadowed by her capacity to commit evil and hurt.

Looking back on it, going NC with her (i.e. only emails about the kids) since is the best thing I ever did. It gives you the chance to heal without them further impacting on your life. Are you able to do that?

[This message edited by Hurthalo at 8:32 AM, Friday, May 12th]

posts: 301   ·   registered: Dec. 26th, 2013   ·   location: Australia
id 8790555
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 Sigyn (original poster member #80576) posted at 3:58 PM on Tuesday, May 23rd, 2023

Thanks to everyone's advice, I've gone NC except son, finances and house. With mixed results on both ends.

My mixed up thoughts about this:

- WH still writes about himself, his experiences, his needs and feelings in the emails, and I just ignore those things and only respond to issues related to the real subject at hand. It's exhausting, and he doesn't respond well to this, I think it's the lack of control. The divorce is my choice and not his, so I think he's scrabbling to regain any kind of control of the situation that he can? He's setting his own "boundaries" that are ridiculous and based on completely fabricated or even flipped stories (where he writes about specific things he himself does as if I'm the one doing them, and then tells me I have to stop doing these things). He also micro-controls weird details, like if a drop off is supposed to be "sunday evening" and I suggest 5pm, he'll counter 5:15. If I want us to decide something about our/our son's summer travel plans by "this weekend" he'll immediately claim he has something important that weekend and pushes it to the following week. It's like he's scrabbling to take control of any small thing he can.

- I say I ignore his emotional outpourings but really I just don't respond to them, I still have to read everything to get to the relevant parts and so I now know that he's telling himself/me/probably others that a divorce should have been something we discussed together as a married couple, through therapy, and made a decision about together. The absolute joke of this! I have to journal like mad to keep from responding to him about this.


- We have a family group chat (mom and dad, my siblings and their spouses) that WH is included on that is only about all of our kids and their schedules, including plans for our son - and on that chat when WH chimes in there is NONE of the emotional manipulation that is happening in the one to one emails. I am considering cc'ing family members on emails from now on, but - this is where my feelings about this 'NC except kids/finance/house' comes in....


- Am I crazy, or do I still deserve to have a way to privately converse with WH about our marriage? Is there any point to it? It feels like I still deserve to have private conversations about what happened, like only discussing parenting/finances/house is punishing me somehow. Like it's me giving up the right to hear any more information about what happened to our marriage, or any hope of ever getting any more questions answered. Like it's letting WH off the hook. Giving him his ideal scenario in which he never has to account for himself or his actions. Was he doing this before I restricted our conversations? No he wasn't. But I always felt like there was a chance he would. That lightning would strike one night and he'd tell me something - anything - to fill in the missing pieces. And that this limited conversation is a gift to him now, exactly what he wants, and eliminating any chance for me to ever reach the man I thought I was married to. It's stupid. He would have broken through and talked to me by now if that man really existed. I know that. But cutting off even the possibility of it has really highlighted how much hidden hope I still had that the man I loved was trapped in there. I know this is something I have to let go but letting go isn't as proactive an act as I thought it was, it's just something that seems to ebb and flow and slowly dissipate over time. It's awful.

Other news:

- My sister told the rest of my family most of the extent that we know of WH's cheating and they've been nothing but supportive. They all love WH but they agreed to not allow him to use them as a sounding board for any complaints about me, nor complaints disguised as 'concern', and will only give advice about how he can be a good father to our son and engage with therapy to better himself. He can't expect anything more than that from them (but I suspect he will).

- I have a redo for my unfortunate weeping under the northern lights solo vacation! I have an upcoming work trip overseas and added 5 days on the end, and this time I'm going to have a great time! Or at least not cry as much. WH will only know that I have a work trip so will not be able to emotionally sabotage me, and I'm so much more prepared this time. Maybe I needed that first crappy solo vacation to really get it all out. At the time I was also contemplating actually initiating the divorce, and those thoughts combined with WH's last minute emotional sabotage... it was a lot. I feel like my perspective has changed subtly since initiating the divorce? I've been haunting Zillow and saving homes that feel like they could really be my home, and doing that makes me try to envision the future instead of the present and the past. That's the focus I really want to cling to on this next solo trip if my wildly swinging emotions are willing.

posts: 120   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2022
id 8792164
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WonderingGhost ( member #81060) posted at 5:36 PM on Tuesday, May 23rd, 2023

You are doing so well @Sigyn! Continuing to send you so much good energy and strength.

WH still writes about himself, his experiences, his needs and feelings in the emails

It's because he's a giant manipulative manchild who can't stand the thought of his "needs, feelings, and traumas" having no relevance or sway over the situation at hand. Everything I've read about your husband SCREAMS manipulative, self-absorbed narcissist. You've pegged it correctly by saying he is freaking out over his lack of control and doing anything and everything to pretend like he has it. Like moving a drop off time off by 15 minutes? If it were a normal person I'd assume they have something important going on that would cause that, but with your WH I would bet money it is pure control tactics. Again, he's frantically grasping at anything to feel like he's in control.

Has he once ever been sympathetic to your needs or even asked you what you want and what you need?

I say I ignore his emotional outpourings but really I just don't respond to them, I still have to read everything to get to the relevant parts and so I now know that he's telling himself/me/probably others that a divorce should have been something we discussed together as a married couple, through therapy, and made a decision about together. The absolute joke of this! I have to journal like mad to keep from responding to him about this.

This is not good for your mental health having to sort through his ridiculousness. Have you considered just conversing through lawyers or 3rd party mediators for the time? Maybe you should tell him that you'll let people know his decision to have a literal second life, attend BDSM sex clubs, and bang dozens of men and women behind your back should have been something he should have discussed and made a decision with you together as a couple?

This isn't the olden days, you could have decided to divorce him over his shoe size if you really wanted to. Again, he wants the control, he wants to believe he should have been considered in this choice regardless of the fact he is the one who caused the fallout. What a joke.

Am I crazy, or do I still deserve to have a way to privately converse with WH about our marriage?

Do you deserve that? Of course. Is there any point? In my humble opinion, no. Only discussing parenting/finances/etc. is punishing HIM. The tragic thing is he was never the man you thought you married. His manipulation and masking ensured you never really knew him or who he was. The extent of his lying and betrayal is the proof of that. I know it's hard to get your heart to accept that, really I do. But I honestly believe ANY attempt to discuss what happened to your marriage will do nothing more than give your WH the chance to gaslight you, blame YOU, blame you for divorcing him and "Not discussing it as a couple." (Interesting, he didn't think discussing his cheating and entire SECOND LIFE with you as a couple was important?). Speaking from experience, there's nothing he can tell you that will make any of it make sense or feel like you've closed the book on the whole thing. That's just the nature of infidelity.

I see you mentioned you haven't actually initiated the Divorce yet unless I missed something. Of course you should take things at your own pace, but I want to ask, what's holding you back?

Please enjoy that vacation! Imagine your life the way you want it to be, just you and your beautiful son, no toxicity, no lies.

[This message edited by WonderingGhost at 5:50 PM, Tuesday, May 23rd]

posts: 108   ·   registered: Oct. 1st, 2022
id 8792175
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 Sigyn (original poster member #80576) posted at 6:29 PM on Tuesday, May 23rd, 2023

Has he once ever been sympathetic to your needs or even asked you what you want and what you need?

Nope, not once. Literally not a single time since I confronted him the first time.

Have you considered just conversing through lawyers or 3rd party mediators for the time?

I have thought about this and my attorney recommended it from the get-go, but it seems so extreme and all it would take to avoid that is WH controlling himself. It shouldn't have to be contentious. Yet his track record of controlling himself is pretty grim, so.

Maybe you should tell him that you'll let people know his decision to have a literal second life, attend BDSM sex clubs, and bang dozens of men and women behind your back should have been something he should have discussed and made a decision with you together as a couple?

Right?? That's all I could think of when I read his admonitions! It's such low hanging fruit - the entire divorce came about because he unilaterally chose to open our marriage without my input, consent or even knowledge. And he KNOWS this, so I wonder if it's that he's really so obtuse, or is he baiting me to get this exact response? He placed his vote for divorce in 2006 or so when he first violated our marriage, it just didn't catch up to him until 2023.

I did file for divorce, shortly after my solo trip. I didn't want to write about it until after he was served, just in case, and still haven't come to terms with it yet so it's not my favorite subject.

posts: 120   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2022
id 8792193
Topic is Sleeping.
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