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I Can Relate :
BS Questions for WS - Part 15

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denwickdroylsden ( member #51744) posted at 1:15 PM on Sunday, January 29th, 2023

For the WSes who chose their APs and left their BSes - how long did it take you to wake up from the fog and did you reach out to your BSes after?

Sadcb–

May not be what you want to hear. I left my first W for my AP and we have been M for many years. (I cheated on my 2nd W also but we rug-swept and are still together.) With my first BW, there was no fog for me to come out of. That was a toxic and mutually destructive relationship that should never have happened. I am not in any way saying that to justify my A's. My flagrant promiscuity was due to a seriously deep seated character defect that I did little to address until after cheating on my 2nd W. Have been on the right path ever since and am grateful for that.

I regret ever cheating on anyone, all the hurt and harm it caused to so many. I made what amends I could to my first BW but have never "reached out" to her otherwise in any meaningful way. We cross paths due to children and grandchildren and manage to paste on fake grins and pretend that we don't despise the sight of each other.

Me: WH frequent flyerNow on straight and narrow.
Paragraphing: Try it. You'll like it.

posts: 65   ·   registered: Feb. 9th, 2016
id 8775226
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Stillconfused2022 ( member #82457) posted at 5:14 PM on Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

How long after d-day (first d-day, last d-day, guess it depends) did your betrayed spouse stop asking questions about the affair?

Could all the questions start making the WS as inappropriately obsessed with the AP as the betrayed spouse?

posts: 354   ·   registered: Nov. 27th, 2022   ·   location: Northeast
id 8775532
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BraveSirRobin ( member #69242) posted at 9:31 PM on Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

How long after d-day (first d-day, last d-day, guess it depends) did your betrayed spouse stop asking questions about the affair?

He stopped asking questions several months after I provided my timeline (post D-Day 2), but we had an agreement that I would tell him anything else I remembered whether he asked or not. It took about two years after the last volunteered detail before he started to believe nothing else was coming. Even now, antiversaries can trigger that anxiety. (Though this past May, he said he was feeling antsy and didn't know why, and I said, "Because it's May," and he said, "My God, you're right." I see that as progress.)

Could all the questions start making the WS as inappropriately obsessed with the AP as the betrayed spouse?

Constant questions do keep the OM in my thoughts, though I wouldn't say it makes me obsessed. I went years without thinking about him between D-Day 1 & 2 (DD2 wasn't a new affair, it was more details about the same one). Since then, I've thought about him every day -- in part because I'm here answering questions, and in part because I'm always conscious that he could be on my BH's mind. I'm almost afraid of forgetting anything that happened because not having the answers was so disastrous before. (Side note: I've only just realized this was true as I typed it out. This is one of the benefits of posting here as a WS -- sometimes the questions spark unexpected self-exploration.)

At some point I'll retire from here, and my BH will hopefully keep healing, and I'll have the distinct pleasure of letting the memories slide into obscurity. But not yet.

WW/BW

posts: 3625   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8775573
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Stillconfused2022 ( member #82457) posted at 3:38 PM on Thursday, February 2nd, 2023

Did you rewrite your vows and recommit? Was that something that seemed important to you? Or was it not really the vows themselves but rather the keeping of them? With vows broken how did you consider yourselves married? Was that important to you?

posts: 354   ·   registered: Nov. 27th, 2022   ·   location: Northeast
id 8775807
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BraveSirRobin ( member #69242) posted at 12:53 PM on Friday, February 3rd, 2023

My affair was before we got married, so I haven't broken my wedding vows. However, after D-Day 2 (when my BH learned I had minimized the extent of the A), he pulled out our wedding video to review it and see if our vows included anything about lying. He had never watched it in the 28 years of our marriage. Seeing it reduced in his eyes to a piece of legal evidence was a very painful day.

I did give him a new ring (not to replace his wedding ring, but one that he wears on his other hand). It has a little chip in it that you can program with a message and scan with your phone. He asked me to write what I would want our vows to say today, knowing what I now know. He says what I wrote was perfect. He never takes it off.

WW/BW

posts: 3625   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8775907
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Squish ( member #79546) posted at 7:46 PM on Tuesday, February 7th, 2023

Hi,

I’m having a really hard time believing my wh is staying because he loves me. He didn’t tell me, I discovered, and he still kept things to himself. I know he feels regret but you know…

But here’s my question, he had a 3 year lta. I don’t understand how he could have invested so much, fallen so madly I love (infatuated) with this person and then the moment I find out be able to tell me that he will end it.

How can you just leave someone who meant that much to you? I just don’t understand it. I know I should ask him. I will. Please can someone explain to me though. I know I get deeply connected to my partners the few I’ve had. I just couldn’t do what he did.

Ty for answering.

posts: 123   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2021
id 8776549
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denwickdroylsden ( member #51744) posted at 8:28 PM on Wednesday, February 8th, 2023

Squish,

"How can you just leave someone who meant that much to you?"

In my case, my AP and I knew and agreed from the start that there'd have to be an end. When it came, I just had to cut the tie and that's what I did. I felt (and continue to feel) badly about how I handled it all the way around. The AP did not deserve the abruptness and I'm sure she considered me callous. But there was never a question of leaving W. Not ever.

I know this makes me sound like a real a55hole and I own that 100%. I'm still with W, it's been close to a decade, we're okay, but not because of any sort of real recovery process. Just a lot of spackle and rug-sweep. At least I learned my lesson finally.

Me: WH frequent flyerNow on straight and narrow.
Paragraphing: Try it. You'll like it.

posts: 65   ·   registered: Feb. 9th, 2016
id 8776673
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Copingmybest ( member #78962) posted at 10:58 PM on Friday, February 10th, 2023

Kind of a long question for the WS’s on here, I was rod to ask a question here. It’s been 22 months, from the first minutes of DD my wife told me she didn’t want to be with th AP, she only wanted me. For the 1st year she never felt she should have to apologize because she felt I ignored her for so long (I worked a ton and I felt like a failure on the intimacy front), even the next 10 months, she apologized maybe 5 time and only said "I’m sorry". I have researched the shit out of recovery and the things each person needs to try and do. I have tackled those tasks with a passion to save the relationship, she has barely done anything. She doesn’t enter into conversation when I open up to her about what I’m feeling. She has never opened up to me about how or what she feels. It would appear she just wants to pretend it never happened and to move on happily ever after. I don’t think I can continue on with someone who won’t own their actions or show any empathy. What kind of a state is she in? What does she need to do to help in recovery? Is there no future for us and should I just admit it’s not going to work between us and end it so I can stop my suffering from all of this waiting on her to come around? Is there hope for us? I love her to death but I can’t go on like this much longer. Thank you in advance for any help you can give me.

posts: 208   ·   registered: Jun. 16th, 2021   ·   location: Midwest
id 8777193
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hikingout ( member #59504) posted at 8:08 AM on Saturday, February 11th, 2023

Personally, I would tell her this exact thing. That you can’t continue with her the way it is now.

If you want to give her any chance, you could add that you will give it a little more time if she gets into individual counseling and shows progress from it. From there, you will consider marriage counseling to see if it can be saved.

People who have affairs can’t fix themselves without trying. Your wife is still entitled and has no empathy or remorse. She may have shame and guilt and that blocks her from moving forward because by admitting out loud how bad it was is an admission of her already existing feelings of lack of worth.

Even so, those are her issues to deal with and her refusal is a refusal to evolve past an entitled cheater. If she sees nothing wrong with her actions then she is open to coping that way again in the future.

I would be preparing for divorce personally. You can always change your course of actions should she give you something different to work with

7 years of hard work - WS and BS - Reconciled

posts: 6955   ·   registered: Jul. 5th, 2017   ·   location: Arizona
id 8777251
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Losthusband43 ( member #79767) posted at 3:55 AM on Sunday, February 12th, 2023

What was something that your BS said, or did that finally made you realize the scope of pain and damage you did?

posts: 69   ·   registered: Jan. 10th, 2022   ·   location: Canada
id 8777374
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hikingout ( member #59504) posted at 5:23 AM on Sunday, February 12th, 2023

So, I don’t think the bs can get a ws to see a truth until they are ready to see it.

I had to work on myself in therapy to recover from the callous person I was following the affair. That is not uncommon.

My affair was about two constant months of texting from the time I woke up until the time I went to bed with breaks only to handle the bare minimum of my life. And it culminated in a meetup that turned physical.

The obsession was more with me being able to see myself in a different way with the praise of an audience. But no matter what they are seeking if they perceive they are getting it their brain is rewarding them with excess dopamine.

I had to tell you all that because what I am leading up to is the pure cognitive dissonance someone who has an affair begins to deal with very early into the situation.

To continue getting the payout of the affair (whatever they went in seeking) then I had to tell myself so much bullshit in order to enjoy it. Rewriting the marriage, projecting things into the AP that are simply not there, fueling my entitlement by inflating what I brought to the marriage and minimizing what my husband brought. Exxagerating how sexy, exciting, interesting and funny I was.

That’s why when we are discovered we say a whole lot of shit that is unbelievably cruel, non-sensical, and usually extremely narcissistic in nature.

The best thing you can do is focus instead on protecting yourself from this person in every way possible. If they decide this is not who they want to be and start figuring out what they need to fix in their own life, they are more likely then to become genuinely curious about your pain.

The ws is in this self- created world of pain and shame and often does not have a lot of deep answers on why they did it to start with. So they can not create enough compassion for themselves to make it bearable to take you fully in. Someone wallowing in shame can’t take the confirmation of what a horrible person they have become.

However, sometimes that pulling away you need to do in order to protect yourself from them can be a precipitous factor for that work to begin.

Despite what I had done, I did not want to lose my husband. He put up his boundaries big time and I marched double step to see if I could get to where I needed to go. However, I only got there because I also didn’t want to be this kind of person in life.

The work a ws does needs to have 100 percent commitment to it. I was probably 8 months in before remorse came. And it was then that I realized until until I understood what I had done to him could I make amends. Affairs are thousands of little cuts and the more of them I could name the more accountability and change was possible.

Your power can be found looking only at yourself, what you need, healing, protection. You have little control of your ws or the outcome. And by healing you will expect more, and you will become More confident as to what to do if they do it or if they don’t.

[This message edited by hikingout at 5:32 AM, Sunday, February 12th]

7 years of hard work - WS and BS - Reconciled

posts: 6955   ·   registered: Jul. 5th, 2017   ·   location: Arizona
id 8777376
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Copingmybest ( member #78962) posted at 6:22 PM on Monday, February 13th, 2023

Thank you for the replies. I know MC is no magical cure all, but I’m hoping the Counselor can ask questions that I can’t/couldn’t and get new answers from her to give me a new perspective of what I’m dealing with. Maybe the MC will suggest to her IC for a while to sort out her deficiencies. Time will tell.

posts: 208   ·   registered: Jun. 16th, 2021   ·   location: Midwest
id 8777518
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hikingout ( member #59504) posted at 3:54 PM on Tuesday, February 14th, 2023

I get that, coping.

We did MC before I had enough IC as well. I

Was so unhealthy I think it made it worse for him. I think he expected that the MC would be this authority figure who would get me to see what I was doing to him.

I put myself in IC before confessing. Until I understood why I did what I did and could work in some of that, there wasn’t anything in our relationship to fix. These deficiencies that you are referring to are deep. Until she embraces that, nothing will make your marriage better.

I was in IC for about 6-7 months before I made significant progress. I wasn’t just going to I , so was journaling, reading, and genuinely trying to search myself. I would agree that the MC may suggest IC to her but my faith in MC is low. There are so many bad ones. Make sure you get a good fit.

I just read something you wrote in another forum and see by what you describe it sounds like your wife thinks it’s you that has defects for not being over it by now. She is a long ways from being where you want her to be if she can’t understand the damage that she has caused.

I don’t think the situation is hopeless but I do think you need to work on your boundaries and recognize that most ws who are motivated to change make Progress in their perspective In the first six months and has made a lot of progress in their behaviors by 12. Her not going to IC is part of the long tortuous ride you have been on but even without that there has t been any work.

Don’t you think if she could see inside your head that she would have been horrified and repentant? This is a big deficiency. She is still telling lies at this point, she does not get it.

Make some boundaries. Protect yourself from further damage. You can still wait and see but do so with detachment.

[This message edited by hikingout at 4:00 PM, Tuesday, February 14th]

7 years of hard work - WS and BS - Reconciled

posts: 6955   ·   registered: Jul. 5th, 2017   ·   location: Arizona
id 8777650
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lrpprl ( member #80538) posted at 5:28 PM on Wednesday, February 15th, 2023

Most Depressing Song Ever???

Years ago a song came out with Peggy Lee... "Is That All There Is?". I remember I could be in a bar having a drink and someone would go to the jukebox and play that song. If I wasn't depressed before hearing that song, then I sure was when it finished.

The reason I bring this up is just what does one think when they come back to earth when the Limerence, Fog, Infatuation, etc. Wears Off. Do they look at all the rubble, debris, dust, and destruction of a ruined marriage, relationship, family, etc. and say something like, "Is that all it was... just a cheap thrill? I destroyed lives. For What?".

Would a question like that come under the heading of Regret, or would it be under Remorse?

To my way of thinking Regret would come from getting caught.

Remorse might come from realizing that one messed up lives, maybe permanently, for basically a few good feelings and nothing else. How can they now go about and right some wrongs?

Is my thinking on the right track here?

[This message edited by lrpprl at 10:42 PM, Thursday, February 16th]

posts: 273   ·   registered: Aug. 12th, 2022   ·   location: USA
id 8777775
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Copingmybest ( member #78962) posted at 6:57 AM on Thursday, February 16th, 2023

hikingout,
She left me a Valentines card Tuesday and in it she wrote that she is so sorry for the pain she has put me through. She never wants to hurt me again. She said she is on her knees begging me to forgive her and wants to regain my trust. Lastly it said that our life plans have come off the rails but she will do whatever it takes to get us back on track.

These are some of the things I’d been waiting 2 years to hear. I’m not optimistic that this behavior will continue but at least it’s a start.

posts: 208   ·   registered: Jun. 16th, 2021   ·   location: Midwest
id 8777901
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hikingout ( member #59504) posted at 1:42 AM on Friday, February 17th, 2023

Coping

I wish you nothing but the best. And I mean that.

I just want you to discern if the flowery words are accompanied by real action. And, also, it goes beyond flowery words into understanding getting on her knees means also doing what you need to heal. Answering questions, being empathetic, telling the truth.

I am not pessimistic. I love to see people reconcile. But I love seeing the two individuals heal more. You deserve to heal, she deserves to heal. If those things can happen healing the relationship will be long term. I hope she proves her words. You deserve nothing less. Take care.

7 years of hard work - WS and BS - Reconciled

posts: 6955   ·   registered: Jul. 5th, 2017   ·   location: Arizona
id 8778081
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Howcthappen ( member #80775) posted at 12:48 AM on Monday, February 20th, 2023

Does your BS trust you? If not, how does it make you feel knowing you’re still not trusted?

Why do you believe your AP accepted being kept a secret on the dark and bring disrespected? I’m always afraid the the AP had no bottom to the things she would accept and do. I almost wish it had been with someone who had a bit more pride do that they would get fed up.

I hate that I could still be in the dark.

Three years since DdayNever gonna be the sameReconcilingThe sting is still present

posts: 199   ·   registered: Aug. 30th, 2022   ·   location: DC
id 8778531
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BraveSirRobin ( member #69242) posted at 11:57 PM on Tuesday, February 21st, 2023

Does your BS trust you?

Yes, he does. I don't think it will ever be absolute -- if I started acting sketchy, he would investigate or confront me or both. And I suppose it's possible that his roller coaster will take another downswing, but if so, we will get through it together. After everything we've gone through in the last four years, we know each other better than we ever have, and he believes in me.

WW/BW

posts: 3625   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8778791
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emergent8 ( Guide #58189) posted at 9:07 PM on Thursday, February 23rd, 2023

This isn't the typical BS to WS question(s) but it's stuff that I have wondered from time to time.
- Do you generally feel comfortable here (at SI)?
- Do you feel welcome/comfortable posting outside of the Wayward forum?
- Are there things that would make this place more welcoming of other Waywards?
- Is it ever hard not to take the vent posts or comments made by BS's personally, even if they are not directed at you?

Thanks guys smile

Me: BS. Him: WS.
D-Day: Feb 2017 (8 m PA with married COW).
Happily reconciled.

posts: 2038   ·   registered: Apr. 7th, 2017
id 8779031
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ff4152 ( member #55404) posted at 12:30 PM on Friday, February 24th, 2023

Hi Emergent8


Do you generally feel comfortable here (at SI)?

In the beginning, absolutely not. In part this was due to having reality shoved in my face. I had spent years believing I was a "good guy" with morals and standards. I used to sneer at adulterers believing I was above all of that. Its quite a sobering and humbling experience to unravel all of that.

On another front, I was attacked (sometimes quite viciously) because I had ended my A and had not confessed. I was made to feel quite unwelcome and folks actually created a thread asking why I was not banned. As time has gone on, the attacks have pretty much disappeared so it has made hanging around easier.

Do you feel welcome/comfortable posting outside of the Wayward forum?

To a point I do but I am very selective in what threads I will respond to. I think (and I could be wrong here) that many BS are probably not interested in what a WS has to say, at least in the early stages. I certainly have zero desire to trigger someone and make a horrible situation any worse.

Are there things that would make this place more welcoming of other Waywards?

That's a tough one. The Wayward forum is pretty much a ghost town these days so it is a bit hard for me to relate with my personal experiences.

One of the things that really bothered me was how some WS were spoken to when they first arrived. I know when I first got here, I still believed my AP was my soulmate and had my head firmly planted up my ass. There were a few WS that were less than welcoming. Now I'm not suggesting that a WS be coddled, but getting them to a place where they feel welcome is key. We respondents should think of ourselves as armchair therapists. Imagine if you went to see an IC while in a really bad state and the first thing they do is shout, what do you think the outcome of that would be? IMO, you need to get a person to start talking and tell their story. Its ok to call them out on their BS but it should be done in a respectful way.

To be clear, I don't think that really exists in the WS forum any longer. The people who regularly respond to WS in this forum now do a great job with new arrivals.

Is it ever hard not to take the vent posts or comments made by BS's personally, even if they are not directed at you?

I never really took most BS comments personally because I understood that many of them were in great pain and I was a symbol of that. I can say that I do get triggered by many of the stories I read here. While many of the themes are the same, each story is unique and painful to read. As a WS, I now wonder how I could have been so blindly selfish not to understand the potential impact of my behavior and decisions.

Me -FWS

posts: 2102   ·   registered: Sep. 30th, 2016
id 8779106
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