No to closure meet - this seemed a gamble I admit but it did what was needed as far as ending them seeing each other
This one statement, more than any other from Oz, underscores what is going on here. Note the passive tense structure here. "It did what was needed." Oz's wife has been checked out of the marriage for some time. To remain technically "married" (lower case -- the structural legal/contractual relationship that is primarily financial), she browbeat Oz into grudgingly uttering words of consent, words his heart didn't actually believe, to have adulterous sex with her ex, a man for whom she has long had feelings. The "Marriage" (upper case -- the intimate bond between adults who are truly committed to be good spouses) has long since been done. The dynamic in this marriage: Oz's wife is the one with the proactive role here, the one propelling events. Oz's role has become passive, reactive. Every act Oz has taken as described in this thread -- hence, every response he propounds in his thread -- is motivated by terror over the thought that the lower case "marriage" might come to an end. In the process, he clings on one side to his fantasy of an intact marriage, and on the other side to his retreating wife, gradually stretching thinner and thinner, regardless of the reality that the upper case "Marriage" is long gone. Eventually, this dynamic will cause Oz to snap.
So far, Oz's wife has played along with this charade, but what is forgotten here is that she is an independent actor. As awful as the marital environment is for Oz, it must also be just as awful for her. First, she is trapped in a marital purgatory that her heart clearly doesn't desire, pushed out of a sense of guilt, or obligation, to mime a role she desires to abrogate. Second, her husband, her partner in mime, now harbors a sense of loathing and resentment toward her because of this tryst with the ex. Prior to this debacle, at least he exhibited a meek sort of filial affection. Now, there's not even that in the family home. It can't possibly feel good to live day after day pretending to be married to a man who you know does not trust you. Third, her heart must desire love and affection, just as anybody's does, and it is clear that she doesn't deserve this at home based on her own input into the marriage dynamic. Finally, if she has an ounce of humanity left in her heart, which I reckon she does, she sees that Oz himself is suffering horribly within this dynamic. Ending the marriage simply as an act of kindness to him would be something I could see her doing. Bottom line, though, is that after all of this gnashing and writing in pain, all of the psychological contorting that Oz is doing to prolong the inevitable, it is not only possible but IMO likely the wife will choose to end the marriage at some point.
Which leads me back to the main point emphasized over and over and over on this site when advising newly minted WS: you cannot control the outcome. It is not just fruitless, but actually foolhardy, to try. Gambits, psychological games, demands, ultimatums, pathetically desperate clinging (as here), none of these things can compel another human's heart to love you in a way that is dignified, genuinely affectionate and empathetic, and faithful. Either a spouse feels those emotions genuinely, or she does not. Here, Oz's wife does not. The advice here to the BH is to get one's self out of infidelity. Find your personal emotional truth, and follow it. If your wife wants to be married to you, she will figure out a way to catch up with you and be at your side. If she doesn't do that, then your marriage never had a chance.
This is why posters here including me have been browbeating Oz about telling the OBW. You tell the OBW because it's the morally right thing to do. In some cases, there are ancillary benefits to the BH, such as the OBW becoming an ally in gleaning information about the A, or the OBW blowing it up with the AP, who goes rushing back to his OBW and dumps the WW, shattering her fantasy that what she had with the AP was real. But those aren't the reason to tell. The reason to tell is that it's the right thing to do because the OBW deserves the dignity of making her own decisions about her life informed by her life's truth. Every time a BS tells the OBS, one possible outcome might be that the OBS divorces the AP, freeing up the AP to continue a relationship with the WS. Yet it is still the right thing to do.
[This message edited by Butforthegrace at 4:55 PM, Wednesday, May 17th]