Cookies are required for login or registration. Please read and agree to our cookie policy to continue.

Newest Member: Goku06

Reconciliation :
Conflict over WW writing APs Mom a letter

default

redbaron007 ( member #50144) posted at 10:55 AM on Sunday, September 4th, 2022

Your wife was neither raped nor brainwashed. She was a willing participant. You have a separate thread where you mentioned details like your wife came w/o a vibrator, the AP came thrice each time, sex on your couch, etc. None of it sounds like rape, because it isn't rape. If anyone has been brainwashed, it is you, by your wife playing the victim.

It's been 17 years, and all your wife has to do is to write that fucking letter, send it, forget it and move on. Neither of you care about the AP or family anyways.

I suspect your wife doesn't really care about your recovery. Here's why:
- It's been 17 years and she feels you should be 'over it' by now.
- There's been zero consequence for her affair. She can continue with her token apologies forever.
- Lastly, she knows that you gave her the 'gift of reconciliation', but she gifted you an incurable STD courtesy her AP. That pretty much will kill your chances at romancing other women (unless you don't mind dating women with STDs, that is). You're not going anywhere.

So she has, and will continue to dictate terms of R, not you. That's the sad truth.

Me: BS (44)
She: WS (41)
One son (6)
DDay: May 2015 (OBS told me)
Divorced, Zero regrets, sound sleep, son doing great!
A FOG is just a weather phenomenon. An Affair Fog is a clever excuse invented by WS's to explain their continued bad behavior.

posts: 252   ·   registered: Oct. 30th, 2015   ·   location: West Coast
id 8753809
default

OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 1:29 PM on Sunday, September 4th, 2022

Please be careful listening to the kind of advice Redbaron has just dished out. He is celebratory pro-D--just read his tag line--and his advice sounds intentionally cruel because you haven't done exactly as he has done. I think he's forgotten that this is the Reconciliation forum.

I suspect your wife doesn't really care about your recovery.

I'm going to assume that your WW staying with you for the last 17 years--which is a pretty long time to fake any genuine caring--is evidence that she DOES care. But I have read many of your threads, and two things seem to come up over and over:

The passionate "I love you" that she texted the AP from the bathroom.

And the passionate sex that they had (positions and locations, etc).

But you had 14 pretty good years where you rarely thought of this? Ok then. So what happened three years ago--in your life or in your M--that triggered feelings of low self-esteem and brought these feelings roaring back to the surface? Because in my view, something is going on in your life, and revisiting these feelings from the A is giving you the outlet to feel badly about yourself and your life. And that's why you would be obsessing about a letter being written--because you think it would heal this hurt inside. But honestly, it won't. Because something bigger is going on, and trying to heal the A feelings with a letter, which will honestly do very little, is simply an easy target.

There is not much that I feel I can say since you've been doing IC and more. I do see evidence in your posts that you don't feel passionate love from your W. You said she never shared an 'I love you' with the passion expressed in that text to AP. Is that true? Do you feel she doesn't love you romantically? Is this a type of mid-life crisis where you are angry you are going to go your whole life without someone loving you that way?

But you also talk about humiliation and shame, and I have to be honest--fixing those is on you. Like any other horrible trauma experienced in life--whether sexual or physical abuse, rape, severe injury, survivor's guilt, whatever the case may be--we have to make peace by finding our pride and belief in ourselves after what we have been through. It's our work, our job to learn to love and appreciate ourselves and block those ugly feelings that creep in and say we're nothing. I've done the work, and it's difficult. It's too slow and not linear at all, but if you persevere, you can fight back the dark thoughts. It's us vs our thoughts. It's not on someone else to fix us. They can't. And a letter after 17 years won't do it either. But other things will. They will mostly come from yourself, but your WW's role will be clearer too. If she's not invested in loving you as you deserve, then your newfound pride will be ready to leave her and find the love you deserve.

I'm not exactly sure if this is a mid-life thing, a work thing, a long-term feeling inside you or what, but you need to find your true self-love and strength regardless. Then it will be much easier to confront the way you feel about your current M.

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5630   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8753813
default

BraveSirRobin ( Guide #69242) posted at 1:35 PM on Sunday, September 4th, 2022

Lastly, if it gives you any measure of comfort, I seriously doubt that AP's mother received the flowers and thought, "Oh how kind of her!" She was probably pissed to learn that you weren't separated and that her son was your wife's sidepiece. I know that if I ever got a letter from an ex of my son saying "I'm sorry I didn't choose him"-- as if she was a contestant on The Bachelorette-- I'd be disgusted by her narcissism and toss those flowers straight into the trash.

I was thinking the exact same thing.

WW/BW

posts: 2904   ·   registered: Dec. 27th, 2018
id 8753814
default

Hippo16 ( member #52440) posted at 1:52 PM on Sunday, September 4th, 2022

These posts bear repeating:

But you also talk about humiliation and shame, and I have to be honest--fixing those is on you. Like any other horrible trauma experienced in life--whether sexual or physical abuse, rape, severe injury, survivor's guilt, whatever the case may be--we have to make peace by finding our pride and belief in ourselves after what we have been through. It's our work, our job to learn to love and appreciate ourselves and block those ugly feelings that creep in and say we're nothing. I've done the work, and it's difficult. It's too slow and not linear at all, but if you persevere, you can fight back the dark thoughts. It's us vs our thoughts. It's not on someone else to fix us. They can't. And a letter after 17 years won't do it either. But other things will. They will mostly come from yourself, but your WW's role will be clearer too. If she's not invested in loving you as you deserve, then your newfound pride will be ready to leave her and find the love you deserve.


Lastly, if it gives you any measure of comfort, I seriously doubt that AP's mother received the flowers and thought, "Oh how kind of her!" She was probably pissed to learn that you weren't separated and that her son was your wife's sidepiece. I know that if I ever got a letter from an ex of my son saying "I'm sorry I didn't choose him"-- as if she was a contestant on The Bachelorette-- I'd be disgusted by her narcissism and toss those flowers straight into the trash.


the two Ladies have "done the work" - proof that life goes on and can be good

Not Just Friends

posts: 656   ·   registered: Mar. 26th, 2016   ·   location: OBX
id 8753816
default

RocketRaccoon ( member #54620) posted at 3:44 AM on Monday, September 5th, 2022

GC,

the note said something to the effect of that she was sorry for not choosing her son.

My guess is that this is the crux of the issue, and the fact that instead of writing the letter first, then reason with you that it should not be sent compounded the issue.

Regardless of how much time has passed, you have harboured resentment for the relationship that you WW had with her AP and his mother. The very fact that she started up a relationship with AP's mother, indicated a willingness to be absorbed into his world. I mean, who introduces there side piece to their mothers unless there was a plan to further the relationship for the long term.

I think you will need to sit down with your WW and hash this out. It is glaringly obvious that you are not recovered from her A, and have seemingly white knuckled your way over the last 17years.

Whether you send or don't send the letter, it will be up to you. Your choice, as the choice for either R or D is always up to the BS. What you are possibly feeling is that the choice for the letter has been ripped out of your hands, and that your WW is manipulating you again.

This needs to be worked out between the two of you, possibly in the presence of a MC, as it is still festering inside you.

You cannot cure stupid

posts: 1014   ·   registered: Aug. 12th, 2016   ·   location: South East Asia
id 8753926
flag

WalkinOnEggshelz ( Administrator #29447) posted at 11:53 AM on Monday, September 5th, 2022

Redbaron, you have a pm.

Me: WS late 40’s
Him: BH (HoldingTogether)
D Day: 7/24/2010
If you keep asking people to give you the benefit of the doubt, they will eventually start to doubt your benefit.

posts: 15456   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2010   ·   location: Texas
id 8753940
default

Buster123 ( member #65551) posted at 1:21 PM on Monday, September 5th, 2022

My wife said she’d rather do just that than write a letter to APs Mom.

This is troublesome, it seems she's not willing to do much for you to help you heal or at least not enough, very selfish of her after all the destruction and embarrassment she caused to you and your family, to me the letter is a bad idea but I understand that you're bothered by her reluctance to even consider it. Could you ask her to send flowers to your mom instead ? a letter saying how much she regrets her A and how fortunate she is that you gave her the gift of R ? OTOH If you insist that she must write the letter to AP's mom I would tell her that you want to send it yourself, I would then destroy it and never tell her you never sent it.

posts: 2638   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018
id 8753947
default

BluerThanBlue ( member #74855) posted at 2:16 AM on Wednesday, September 7th, 2022

gainingclosure, instead of going back and forth about writing this letter, why don't you give some thought into what's truly bothering you and what you hope to obtain? Diagnose the problem first and then work together with her to find out what the best treatment would be.

As for whether your wife is, generally, doing enough to help you heal... I really don't know enough to say. But I can say that you probably do need to be realistic about what your expectations are, given the fact that people who were born on your Dday are going to be graduating from high school this year.

BW, age 40
Divorced WH in 2015; now happily remarried to a great guy

I edit my comments a lot for spelling, grammar, typos, etc.

posts: 861   ·   registered: Jul. 13th, 2020
id 8754164
default

 gainingclosure (original poster member #79667) posted at 11:26 PM on Wednesday, September 7th, 2022

Thanks for everyones input and comments, I have read every one.

We got back from our 4 day labor day trip which started out on very rocky footing but our emergency therapy MC session plus all your input was effective in convincing me that its pretty much on me now to finish up recovery work. Basically, the therapist gave me some tough love, and said I need to stop giving my wife all these tests. They wont really help. I need to let up on her because its driving her further away and I need to learn to handle these difficult thoughts internally until they dissipate. I think we came out of that session on a better trajectory.

On another positive note, we accomplished something major in the bedroom a few days ago. Previously, AP had been the only person to make her achieve an O from penetration alone and this has been a major issue for my self esteem and feelings of being undesired by her. Of course illicit sex is just not going to have the same level of excitement that stable relationship sex has but it can be much deeper emotionally. Well, it happened naturally for the first time the other day in our 23 years together! She recently got on some hormone replacement as well as got some rejuvenation procedure down there a few months back, with the goal being this. I think that, combined with the makeup sex did the trick. AP will no longer have that one up on me. Feels like a win on multiple levels. We celebrate our 19th anniversary next week and right now Im feeling positive.

Reconciling BH. Full story is in my bio."The soul is dyed with the color of its thoughts" - Marcus Aurelius

posts: 88   ·   registered: Dec. 9th, 2021
id 8754259
default

survrus ( member #67698) posted at 11:56 PM on Wednesday, September 7th, 2022

Note that you do not have to have your WWs consent to send a letter to OM Mom you can send one yourself.

Action brings good fortune.

Also contact OMW or SO.

It's not a bad thing if OM starts looking over his shoulder.

Soon after I talked with OM1 he and his family moved away about 500 miles, not sure if it was me but perhaps it was a contributing factor.

[This message edited by survrus at 11:58 PM, Wednesday, September 7th]

posts: 1206   ·   registered: Nov. 1st, 2018   ·   location: USA
id 8754269
default

Stevesn ( member #58312) posted at 1:05 PM on Thursday, September 8th, 2022

I’m wondering, did the IC put all the responsibility for this latest squabble over the communication with APs mom on you? Did he/she have no thoughts of what your wife should be doing with respect to helping you through this issue?

fBBF. Just before proposing, broke it off after her 2nd confirmed PA in 2 yrs. 9 mo later I met the wonderful woman I have spent the next 30 years with.

posts: 3454   ·   registered: Apr. 17th, 2017
id 8754322
default

 gainingclosure (original poster member #79667) posted at 11:53 PM on Thursday, September 8th, 2022

Stevesn, the IC has focused almost entirely on helping me/us understand the reasons behind why she had the affair and it having to do with both of our attachment styles.

My WW has always had an anxious attachment style, that is to say, constantly doubting herself and requiring reassurance. Basically clingy. On the other hand, I have historically been on the avoidant side, meaning that I have a hard time showing affection and view her attachment style as smothering. As a result I have acted in ways in the past that led her to beleive that I didnt really love her or value the marriage. The affair was in no small part a result of both of our insecure attachment styles clashing.

After this latest massive trigger that occurred back in November last year, Ive pretty much flipped 180 degrees to being anxious and Ive given her many tests throughout the past several months, none of which has really helped much and in fact its done more harm than good. Its now escalated to me threatening to move out on at least a few occasions if she doesnt perform a test, the latest example of which is the letter. There is only so much of that uncertainty she can take.

He basically is saying that I can give her a thousand tests and still not feel any better and that I need to find a way to forgive both myself and her if there is to be any hope of saving the marriage.

[This message edited by gainingclosure at 11:56 PM, Thursday, September 8th]

Reconciling BH. Full story is in my bio."The soul is dyed with the color of its thoughts" - Marcus Aurelius

posts: 88   ·   registered: Dec. 9th, 2021
id 8754442
default

OwningItNow ( member #52288) posted at 3:11 AM on Friday, September 9th, 2022

You are unfortunately another victim of bad marriage counseling. I beg those suffering from infidelity to avoid MC for just this reason--the MC, in their loyalty to the marriage, insists both partners share in the marital dysfunction.

This. Further. Damages. A. BS.

I'll let someone else continue the explanation, but I feel badly. In believing you somehow caused someone to cheat on you (absurd! She could have asked for a divorce! At least it would have been honest!) you simply don't know who to trust. If our own imperfections make people cheat and lie, then we're doomed! Because we're not perfect! And what are we supposed to do with our anger? Be mad at ourselves for not being perfect? Unfair! Unjust! More damage.

You have not been properly counseled in a way that has allowed trust and peace back into your life. I'm sorry.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 3:13 AM, Friday, September 9th]

me: BS/WSh: WS/BS

Reject the rejector. Do not reject yourself.

posts: 5630   ·   registered: Mar. 16th, 2016   ·   location: Midwest
id 8754465
default

The1stWife ( member #58832) posted at 10:54 AM on Friday, September 9th, 2022

If you stop to consider and understand why you are feeling less positive about your marriage, then you may be able to resolve this.

It’s not about WHY your wife cheated. It’s not about "your role" as the MC stupidly put it. It is about what you need to feel secure.

I think security comes from many things. Job, relationships, health, etc.

Think of it this way. You need to be "good" whether married or divorced. Once you have confidence in yourself, what others do or don’t do matters less.

Here’s my example. My H planned to D during his last affair. Yes I was devastated. Completely blindsided. But I had children I needed to be present for.

And I needed to be able to stand on my own. Earn a living and manage a home and all those responsibilities.

I needed to be happy with or without my marriage.

If my H is in my life - great! But if not I’m still going to be happy. I invested in myself and I am just moving forward every day. You are either with me or you need to get out of my way.

Your marriage is supposed to enhance your happiness. If you are not happy on your own, your marriage cannot make you happy. Period.

I hope this helps you get past the situation you are in. Only you can change it. You can test your wife a thousand times, but it’s not going to work to give you peace. Only you can give you peace.

Alleviate the anxiety and gain a more serene mindset.

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 12497   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8754483
default

Trdd ( member #65989) posted at 1:05 PM on Friday, September 9th, 2022

Your counselor is confusing two different concepts: 1) why marriages are under tension and 2) why one partner chooses to cheat instead of working to fix the marriage or deciding to divorce.

These two issues are different. Yes, both things may have been happening simultaneously but plenty of marriages under tension exist where neither spouse cheats. A rocky marriage does not cause infidelity. A rocky marraige may help create a condition where one spouse is more tempted but it is their own inner flaws that make them decide to cheat. Inner flaws also make some people decide to cheat even when they are in a good marriage. We see that happen all the time here at SI.

This lack of separating the two issues appears to be relatively common with counselors. It shows a lack of understanding of the dynamics of infidelity. A counselor can have decent skill but fail to learn about this dynamic. When that happens they weaken the BS by subtly or not so subtly apportioning blame on the BS for the affair. This also helps the the wayward rationalize their choices and behavior instead of taking full accountibility.

I would share this with your counselor and see what they say or just consider getting a new one. It really is a very important underpinning to get right when working on infidelity.

posts: 642   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8754516
default

ohmy_marie ( new member #469) posted at 2:28 PM on Friday, September 9th, 2022

We stayed married, and the following year bought a house together. The next year, we got pregnant. We then moved out of state for a job I took, and had two more kids. We are now 16 years post d-day. I've gone long periods of time without thinking about it, but sometimes I retrigger and have negative thoughts that I battle to this day.

According to your story above, you have gone long periods of time without thinking of your wife's A.

You state you sometimes retrigger.

Have you explored why you are not able to calm yourself (or sit with your feelings, and then allow them to pass)?

How does coming to SI serve you in your personal goals for yourself?

Does your IC help you identify healthy ways in which you can unburden yourself? If so, what does that practice look like, and are you practicing those methods regularly?

From your posts, it seems the IC has talked about how being stuck in your own head (ruminations) has a negative effect on your wife and M. IMHO, they have an equally negative effect on your own mind.

I would suggest that you read a few books on mindfulness (staying in the present moment). I would also suggest that you begin to practice daily gratitude From your own story, you have built a beautiful life with your wife and childen. Allow the beauty of that life to shine!

I have this quote on my "about me" page, and thought perhaps it would help bring you some peace:

"No long-term marriage is made easily, and there have been times when I've been so angry or so hurt that I thought my love would never recover. And then, in the midst of near despair, something has happened beneath the surface. A bright little flashing fish of hope has flicked silver fins and the water is bright and suddenly I am returned to a state of love again — till next time. I've learned that there will always be a next time, and that I will submerge in darkness and misery, but that I won't stay submerged. And each time something has been learned under the waters; something has been gained; and a new kind of love has grown. The best I can ask for is that this love, which has been built on countless failures, will continue to grow. I can say no more than that this is mystery, and gift, and that somehow or other, through grace, our failures can be redeemed and blessed." ― Madeleine L'Engle

Be kind to yourself within your own mind. Love, Marie

P.S. I was happy to read that you had a positive vacation experience as husband and wife! Keep moving forward!

[This message edited by ohmy_marie at 2:33 PM, Friday, September 9th]

BS & WS. Married

Every opportunity lost can be traced back to the failure to adapt. --Bernard Branson

posts: 37   ·   registered: Sep. 5th, 2002   ·   location: USA
id 8754532
default

swmnbc ( member #49344) posted at 9:25 PM on Sunday, September 11th, 2022

You know, if you were being told that expecting your WS to make things right was "giving her a test" in the immediate aftermath of DDay, I'd worry that your WS doesn't understand the depth of your pain nor is committed to helping you through it. But it sounds like that's not the case. In my experience you do come to a point where you realize you've received enough grand gestures from your WS and the ball is now in your court to move forward, or not.

If you are still troubled by the flowers/note to AP's mother (and I understand why this would sting) then maybe you can do an exercise where she writes a note and then you burn it together. I would caution against initiating contact after all of these years because what you want to accomplish (AP and mother understanding that the affair was nothing) has surely already happened thanks to the passage of time, but things you may not want to accomplish (like getting a cease and desist letter or some other unpleasant response) may happen as a result of this. But it sounds like you are already feeling better on this point so this is probably moot.

Obviously the terrible reality of an affair is that Humpty Dumpty can't be put right again. Your WS can glue and glue and glue but it can't be undone. Of course, there is a high correlation between a WS's willingness to glue with all their might and their level of accountability and commitment to the marriage. A BS is not wrong for asking for what they need, and it's in watching their WS pick up the glue and attempt an impossible task that the BS may find their way towards acceptance. (Conversely, a WS who balks, complains, and avoids picking up the glue is demonstrating that their needs still come first.) I'm glad you are coming to a place where you can lean into trust.

posts: 1786   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2015
id 8754851
Cookies on SurvivingInfidelity.com®

SurvivingInfidelity.com® uses cookies to enhance your visit to our website. This is a requirement for participants to login, post and use other features. Visitors may opt out, but the website will be less functional for you.

v.1.001.20220905 2002-2022 SurvivingInfidelity.com® All Rights Reserved. • Privacy Policy