T/J - My T/J has been triggered by a paragraph in a post taken out of context. I do not at all mean to criticize any person or people. The thoughts that triggered me are normal soon after d-day, after all. I do mean, however, to offer an alternative way if thinking.
I feel like I've been thrown into this confusing and devastating storm. I've had to lie to my friends and family (by not telling them what's going on with us). I've had to put on a brave face and act my way through everyday so my kids and my co-workers wouldn't know how I was feeling underneath the mask. I've had to begin therapy, which I find kind of stressful. I have to sit with all of my unanswered questions and missing pieces of the puzzle until his therapist decides he's "ready" to enter MC with me. Everyone's life has to be on hold and I have to remain stuck until his majesty the cheater can handle the stress of MC without causing him to resume the behaviors that supposedly led him to the A. My therapist has tried to give me tools to handle my trauma while I'm in this holding pattern, but I still look at him and want to punch his smug-ass face sometimes!
Gently, I understand feeling like this. I agree that BSes get thrown into a confusing, devastating storm. I've told only a few people outside of a therapeutic contract, where confidentiality is assured (pretty much), about my W's A.
I am very sorry you've lost connection with your inner power, fireandwater, but it's not unnatural early in recovery. We/You have been victimized, and it's hard to avoid taking on an extended Victim role.
But we BSes are in control of ourselves. We choose who and what we say. We choose our requirements for R, and we choose what behavior we accept.
Still gently, fandw, what do you hope to achieve from MC? Is your WS dodging questions? Is he getting a pass on that from his IC? Do you want answers? My W's IC, who became our MC on d-day, told my W point blank to answer all my questions if she wanted me to choose R. She said it MC, and she said it in IC. Later, when I started IC, my therapist told me to ask any question I and to expect truthful answers or to walk.
If your H isn't strong enough to answer your questions, will he ever be strong enough to R? How long are you willing to wait for him to take responsibility for himself. His refusal to be a responsible adult is his problem, not yours. Your problem is figuring out what you'll do about it.
One step we can all take that will advance our own healing is to realize that healing from the pain of being betrayed is not the same task as Reconciling or Divorcing, and that Reconciling takes a WS who will do the necessary work. Sure, it often makes sense to give the WS time to prepare to do the work - but not at the expense of selling oneself down the river of more pain than one chooses to accept.
My W is a CSA (childhood sex abuse) survivor. My heart goes out to her for that. Her experience was an important part of what I accepted from her. But she stopped lying when she revealed her A. She didn't dodge after that, though she sometimes asked permission to defer answering a question until an MC session. She certainly saw herself as a Victim, but she didn't use that to dodge her responsibility. Part of that was her decision, part of that was her decision as guided by her IC. If she had hidden behind her CSA or behind her therapist, I suspect I'd have been much more interested in D and less interested in R than I was. I recommend a similar approach for you.
It's important for BSes to have requirements for R. IMO, the best way for a BS to heal is to negotiate requirements for R and to walk away if the WS won't agree to meet them - and to walk away if the WS doesn't follow up their agreement by actually meeting those requirements.
R requires strength from both partners. R takes 2. A BS can't R without the WS doing the necessary work, no matter how strong the BS is. I urge every BS not to sell yourself out.
[This message edited by SI Staff at 4:06 PM, Friday, September 23rd]