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Reconciliation :
Why is the Sex so Eviscerating?

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 Wounded Healer (original poster new member #34829) posted at 5:19 PM on Sunday, September 11th, 2022

Hi again.

Crazy Saturday. Just getting caught up with your sharings this morning and oh...my...goodness. So much here to consider and process. Trying to be wide open to all of it...even (especially?) if I don't like it, or on the surface, feel like I'm in agreement or not. I'm stuck for a reason(s) right? Some thinking, framing, or processing one way or another is going to have to change. I want to reply to all the resonant things here (and there are many)...but need a minute. But I do want to immediately thank ALL of you sincerely for all the investments of time, emotion, vulnerability, and thought you have given to me thus far in these exchanges. It's super valuable and I know how much *I* have to invest of myself to share *my* part of things...so I understand how much is costs you guys to share too. THANK YOU. I hope to dialogue with any of you still wishing to engage with these things very soon.

And...Go Colts ;-)

WH

[This message edited by Wounded Healer at 7:25 PM, Sunday, September 11th]

BS - 39 years on DDay

DDay #1: 10/13/2010 - 4 month EA/PA with Divorced OM from 10/2009 to 2/2010

DDay #2: 4/14/2021 - 8 month EA with married OM/family friend 2/2010 to 10/2010

Crazy about each other. Reconciling.

posts: 37   ·   registered: Feb. 15th, 2012   ·   location: Northern Indiana
id 8754821
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Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 7:37 PM on Sunday, September 11th, 2022

T/J

Survrus

There is not a day I do not think about putting an end to OM and his kids.

Friend – If you are talking homicidal thoughts to OM AND his kids

I get it when we men (probably more than women) have these thoughts of getting permanently rid of the OM. But those tend to be brief, fantasy-like revenge thoughts that quite quickly fade out because we KNOW killing the AP isn’t the way to go. But add his kids to the equation and hardly a day you don’t think about it…
Please – get help with those thoughts. They aren’t helping you in any way or form.

"If, therefore, any be unhappy, let him remember that he is unhappy by reason of himself alone." Epictetus

posts: 10918   ·   registered: Sep. 29th, 2005
id 8754838
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gainingclosure ( member #79667) posted at 1:53 AM on Monday, September 12th, 2022

As youve seen from many of the above posts, and what you will notice if youve lurked on this forum and others enough is the overall theme of responses in here tends to be:

1. why youve done, and continue to do everything wrong in terms of healing

2. why your WS is doing everything wrong, or at best, hasnt done enough of the right things to help you heal

I dont doubt that the intention of most members on this forum is to lend helpful advice, but Im afraid that what this can lead to (because it has also been my own experience) is renewed and strenthened anger at your WS for failing to meet your needs as they pertain to healing, and strenthened shame on your part for not doing the process correctly in the first place.

Beware of being sucked into negative thought spirals as a result of reading advice on here. The vast majority of these people are not professionals in reconciliation by any stretch. Most have been hurt badly by infidelity. Its understandable where they are coming from and its nice to not feel so alone. There are also veins of gold from time to time, but it can also be a double edged sword. I do hope you dont end up more bitter or worse off as a result of posting on this forum. Try not to get sucked into the "poor me" mindset if you can.

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 8754877
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 Wounded Healer (original poster new member #34829) posted at 4:12 PM on Monday, September 12th, 2022

Good Morning and Happy Monday,

I've had a bit of a chance to sit with some of the resonant things that struck me in what has been shared in response to this question about the, what I perceive to be, fundamentally visceral nature of what I have experienced in being sexually betrayed.

I don't think I'll be able to touch on all of them in this one post, and not even sure I'm ready to fully engage with much of it, but want to try to at least begin some engagement and dialogue on some of the things.

Sorry if this is more stream of consciousness than not...it's sorta where I am I guess.

(some discussion of sexual assault ahead)

First, to the ladies who (very vulnerably) shared they felt some sort of sense of rape witht their betrayals That is the stuff of nightmare...and I am so sorry you had to encounter that. How utterly horrible. Full stop. I think that concept might be a launching point in this discussion though. I wonder even if I am even experiencing some version of the same thing. There is a VERY deep sense of violation at the center of this swirl for me..like at what I would call my core...even shades of feelings of assualt/non consent (not violent/physical of course...but conceptually, psychologically, emotionally..yes). And since several responses here mentioned my visceral reaction to OM's semen...I think I may see a possible connection here? Also, the issue of ownership was mentioned in connection to this strugggle for me as well. The thinking sorta going like my core/primal reaction to the semen thing likely comes from a kind of outsized sense of ownership I have connected to my wife's body and a kind of failure to understand her autonomy. And if I could relinquish any sense of ownership, and correct the lenses with which I view her autonomy, then perhaps I could get a greater measure of peace with some of this visceral sex stuff. And, at soem level, semen is semen. Whether mine, OM's, or someone else's. Go to the lab, put it in a test tube under a microscope and it is all just the same cocktail of proteins and cells from one man to another and really has no reason, in and of itself, to cause such visceral disgust.

I have treid this framework and I just keep slamming up against walls with it. I get it on some fundamental, clinical, "facts only" level. Truly I do. But I guess those are the walls I keep slamming into. I'm not finding any comfort in the lab. Because the lab and my heart don't relate. (Gently and carefully) using the illustraion of victims of male sexual assault, one of the common things these victims (of both genders) will do...is scrub themselves. Obsessively. Even to the point of injury. Sometimes for a really long time. Because, while the touches and bodily fluids (and all the other physical horrors of assualt) that were forced upon them are in fact still, clinically no different at all from their husband's, SOs, or partner's, the context they encountered them in makes them entirely, wholly, completely, thoroughy...different. It's not the semen these folks are desperately trying to scrub off of themselves...it is the violation. The semen in that instance becomes a sort of definitive symbol, a representation of the core violation. And that shit don't scrub...especially not in the lab. So, yeah, for me, I don't think I'm hung up on some proteins and skin cells, and fluids. But I AM stuck in ALL of what those things REPRESENT. And, for me, (I think?) it represents violation. It represents I think even a sort of permanance. The act of sexaully mating, by design, is meant to create permanent things between those mating...offspring being the ultimate example of that. And that particular bodily fluid is the near symbolic embodiment of that. Oxytocin injected into our brains during that act is one of the most powerful hormones in exsitence...whose sole purpose is to create an exteme pairing bond...hinting at permanance. A mate for life kind of thing. And that the person who consequentially opened within me the deepest places of vulnerabiltiy that can be opened in a human being by pledging and promising and inviting me to be that mate for life person who will be the only one to share those permanent bonds, offspiring, sexual union, and all the other things mating for life brings...when that person gives all of those things to someone else...essentially mates with someone else...while being life bonded/mated/married to me...that is what the sex, the fluids, and really everything that is exclusively within a mate for life context...symbolizes to me. It's not about semen...but it also really is.

Well...this sorta became a book. About semen. Awesome.

I want to touch on the ownership and autonomy things as well as rugsweeping and remorse too. And also to some individual posters whose thoughts in this thread resonated with me. But think I should probably do that in another post so I will do that.

I also want to add, I am not at odds with anyone personally in this response. I TOTALLY GET things are being shared with a true heart to help. And I SO REPSECT and APPRECIATE that. I just really want to get help here and the only way I can see that happeneing is if I share in gut level honesty why/where/how I am struggling with those things and why they don't seem to be "working" for me. THANK YOU again for your investment in this. In me. A random stranger on the internet.

WH

BS - 39 years on DDay

DDay #1: 10/13/2010 - 4 month EA/PA with Divorced OM from 10/2009 to 2/2010

DDay #2: 4/14/2021 - 8 month EA with married OM/family friend 2/2010 to 10/2010

Crazy about each other. Reconciling.

posts: 37   ·   registered: Feb. 15th, 2012   ·   location: Northern Indiana
id 8754938
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Oldwounds ( member #54486) posted at 5:33 PM on Monday, September 12th, 2022

Recovery is extremely individual, I don’t know that any ONE way works for any of us. We find our own path to the other side of the horror show.

I agree that all anyone is trying to do is share their way through, what worked for them.

Getting back to what your current struggles all, again, I was exactly where you are now.

Time doesn’t exactly repair it.

I saw infidelity as a rejection of me and my existence at a molecular level.

So, I truly feel your pain, because I was there.

It was a dealbreaker. It did break the original permanence of my bond with my mate.

But the time with AP is no more permanent than my original physical and mental bond with my wife. Whatever bond with AP is broken and in the wind as well.

So, I had to decide if overcoming this very REAL loss, the loss of that original bond (physical and mental) was worth my effort to require a new deal.

Logic was my only way out.

On average, all of our cells die off and are replaced approximately every seven years. Also, with the aging process we’re not who we were a few days ago or a few years ago, etc. Those thoughts didn’t change anything that happened, they just gave me a way to focus on the changes I made, the changes my wife made and to look at a way to move forward.

Eventually, I learned to let the past stay where it belongs — in the past. It’s an idea that is easy to say NOW, because it took a very long time for me to get there. I don’t ever ignore it. I accept that it happened and I never have to be okay with it. I simply do not define me or my wife by those moments in our past. I will always hate that it happened, but I don’t hate the changed person in front of me.

I built a new relationship, set a new foundation with a person who once turned her back on her own self interest, her family and me.

None of what I have done to heal along the way may help you, but at least you’ll know how one person found a way through.

The old special us is gone.

The two people who conquered a horrific adversity we never anticipated, against all odds — that’s the new us. Our love now, seemed impossible, and that in and of itself, to build beyond those broken days, is special to us now.

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

posts: 4401   ·   registered: Aug. 4th, 2016   ·   location: PNW. The adventure continues.
id 8754945
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sisoon ( Moderator #31240) posted at 5:31 PM on Tuesday, September 13th, 2022

My heart goes out to you, Wounded. With aging, I know what it's like not to e able to do something now that I know I've been able to do in the past.

IMO, you'd do yourself a service by giving yourself permission to continue in R and to D. If the bodily fluid issue is unacceptable to you, you can leave with your head held high. In general, I think R is a better default than D because I think life works better when change is minimized (that's opinion, not fact), but I think that recovery from being betrayed requires honesty, starting with being honest with yourself. Being honest with oneself means, for many people, ending (or minimizing when kids are involved) the relationship. If you make a mindful decision, you can and ought to hold your head high, no matter what choice you make.

One thing to remember is that so much of one's reaction to being betrayed is visceral, and visceral is an entirely different reaction from logical - and words go with logic, not with emotions. You really need to work with the emotions directly, without any mediation from words.

It's not logic and science that will get you out of the hole you're in. Rather, it's staying in touch with your gut and heart and letting then dictate how you'll frame being betrayed. Some of us R happily, and some of us D happily, even when the facts are very similar. Your task is to figure out which is the way you want to go.

I also suggest rereading ChamomileTea's posts to you.

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

posts: 27569   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8755060
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Trapped74 ( member #49696) posted at 6:15 PM on Tuesday, September 13th, 2022

7+ years out from his PA (there have been a few EA/hiccups every couple of years since) and I still don't make the same noises during sex because I can't stop wondering what the OW sounded like. I haven't brought my vibrator out of its drawer in all that time because she used one with him (he couldn't get her off without BOB either! laugh )

It's not just you.

Many DDays. Me (BW) 46 Him (WH) 49
Happily detached and compartmentalized.

posts: 231   ·   registered: Sep. 21st, 2015   ·   location: Oregon
id 8755074
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NotMyFirstRodeo ( member #75220) posted at 7:35 PM on Tuesday, September 13th, 2022

Gonna take a stab at it.

Because she showed you that she didn't feel the same way about what was special between the two of you nor that she valued you as you valued her. Basically, the "reality" you lived for years is shattered and proven to be a ruse. Now your mind and heart each face their own kind of dissonance. The lack of harmony in heart and mind are a consequence of facing a real-life plot twist which currently lacks an ending and appears to be incapable of an ending that is cohesive. It's similar to a poorly written screenplay that never connects the dots. Awful things happen, seemingly happen for no sound reason and in the end you're left feeling as though you were given an someone's incomplete and poorly conceived work.

It's like being in a nightmare that was intentionally engineered by the person you loved more than anyone. Of course you're distressed.

But, no. It's not a bad screenplay or a nightmare. It's your life. Years of it. And it's all thanks to her intentional choices to betray you repeatedly.

None of it makes any sense unless the one thing that terrifies you the most is true; no matter how much you loved her you were never more than a fool that she despised.

I hope I'm wrong in your case.

------------------
***edit***
I read your profile.

My man, she doesn't respect you and you've been a push over. She's a predator and you're her pack mule which carries her financial load and there to reinforce her social prestige. I kept reading how she was the model for remorse "except for X" and buddy.... "X" is huge. It's literally a disqualifier.

You're feeling broken because your gut is screaming at you that something is way off and it's right. I can't tell you what to do but I can share that there are more parallels to our stories than I wish were true. And the best thing I did was stop believing that she saw me the way I believed she had. I started to see that I needed to listen to my gut. I think you should listen real hard to your gut.

[This message edited by NotMyFirstRodeo at 10:32 PM, Tuesday, September 13th]

Every lie we tell incurs a debt to the truth. Sooner or later that debt is paid.

posts: 353   ·   registered: Aug. 19th, 2020
id 8755092
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Unhinged ( member #47977) posted at 5:37 PM on Wednesday, September 14th, 2022

"It hit me in my DNA," was something a member once wrote in the Betrayed Menz thread (I cannot remember who it was, unfortunately).

Brother, in over seven years on this site I have never ceased by to amazed at how hard and how deeply infidelity hits. What you're going through is as normal as normal gets while surviving infidelity. For most of us, the betrayal of infidelity is a profound shock and a severe emotional and psychological trauma. It takes years to heal. At one year out from d-day, I was still an unhinged mess of a human being.

Obsessing about the sexual aspects of an affair is both common and pernicious. It's a "rabbit hole" that goes as deep as you're willing to go. I don't know if it has an end. What I do know is that it never led me anywhere I really wanted to go, I gained nothing by chasing that fucking rabbit, and at some point, I simply got tired of thinking about it. There was nothing I could do to change what happened.

I think much of what you're feeling stems from the profound sense of injustice that most (if not all) betrayed spouses feel. It's simply not fair, not right, not acceptable, incomprehensible and just downright shitty. Our WS trade quite a lot for a temporary escape from their own shit.

What you gain by continuing to obsess about it?

Married 2005
D-Day April, 2015
Divorced May, 2022

"The Universe is not short on wake-up calls. We're just quick to hit the snooze button." -Brene Brown

posts: 6587   ·   registered: May. 21st, 2015   ·   location: Colorado
id 8755239
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Trdd ( member #65989) posted at 12:36 PM on Saturday, September 17th, 2022

How are you doing Wounded?

posts: 642   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8755725
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 Wounded Healer (original poster new member #34829) posted at 8:35 PM on Monday, September 19th, 2022

Hello again,

I just wanted to say thank you again for the follow up replies. And thanks so much to TRDD for specifically checking in on me. I continue in IC with EMDR and am just hoping it eventually does something tangibly helpful with this (especially this part of) the path. My thoughts drift in a bigger picture sort of way to this being a dealbreaker, but me, for a crap ton of reasons, not wanting it (or letting it) be one. And what a spot that is to be in. I wonder...was anyone still in shock after a year of a second dday? I think that's part of the mind-bomb for me. I have been generally aware of the biggest part of the affair stuff for over a decade...but the new stuff and full picture...just over a year. And maybe, becuase I feel like since the new info/dday happened at the same time/so long ago/on the heels of the same original 12 year old betrayal...that maybe I shouldn't still be stuck here. But then I remember...the full truth has only been mine for just over a year. So I go back and forth between thinking I'm doing pretty/really/amazingly well...and feeling totally defeated by this. Well...I'm officially rambling pretty incoherently now so I'm gonna stop. But...thanks so much again to all of you. All of your thoughts and time are still greatly appreciated.

WH

BS - 39 years on DDay

DDay #1: 10/13/2010 - 4 month EA/PA with Divorced OM from 10/2009 to 2/2010

DDay #2: 4/14/2021 - 8 month EA with married OM/family friend 2/2010 to 10/2010

Crazy about each other. Reconciling.

posts: 37   ·   registered: Feb. 15th, 2012   ·   location: Northern Indiana
id 8756065
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Oldwounds ( member #54486) posted at 8:47 PM on Monday, September 19th, 2022

At two years, I was still in a rough spot. I was in a fairly deep depression from months 18-24.

Somewhere in year three, my mind actually healed some and I was better able to figure out what I wanted — not just from the M — but life overall.

I absolutely embraced the the idea that infidelity is ALWYAS a deal breaker.

So, I looked at a new deal with my wife. And, when I knew that that looked like, the past started moving where it belonged, in the past.

Set up how you want your life to look like and feel and start to aim for that.

Whether it is a solo existence or trying to rebuild the M — find what will give you peace on the other side of your pain. And it’s not easy to imagine in the depth of pain that is the first couple of years.

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

posts: 4401   ·   registered: Aug. 4th, 2016   ·   location: PNW. The adventure continues.
id 8756069
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sisoon ( Moderator #31240) posted at 9:26 PM on Monday, September 19th, 2022

Lots of new info 1 year ago? In a very real sense, you're 1 year out. That's a lousy spot to be in.

Have you read https://survivinginfidelity.com/topics/324250/things-that-every-ws-needs-to-know/? It's the first topic in the WS forum. If you haven't read it, I recommend it. I used it long ago to gauge my W's behavior vs. what Hufi-Pufi posted.

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

posts: 27569   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8756081
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Trdd ( member #65989) posted at 4:44 AM on Tuesday, September 20th, 2022

Most people take over a year to substantially heal, many take 2-3 years or even more. So you are not an outlier at all in that regard.

posts: 642   ·   registered: Aug. 27th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8756148
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