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New Beginnings :
New Beginnings

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 maise (original poster member #69516) posted at 6:26 PM on Monday, June 10th, 2024

June 9, 2018 was my first D-day with my ex-WS. I think back to that day and how lost I felt. I remember feeling like the emotions I was experiencing were so bad that I wanted to return to not knowing so that I could get my life back. As I started to unravel the reality that was now my life, one of my friend's expressed her concerns in how focused I was on learning about my ex-WS and their why's and said, "maise, my concern is that you are so focused on your ex-WS and helping her that you are not focused on you...my worry is that she will recover with your help and move on and you would have delayed your own healing." A valid concern honestly, but I knew deep down I would never let myself not learn from this horrible experience.

When I was 14 years old, I was gang raped. I remember making up my mind then that any time I experienced anything awful I would always learn from it somehow to better myself and build myself up. Otherwise, what was it all for? There was no chance in hell I was going to have something that awful happen to me for no reason. Learning and growing and building myself up when bad things happen gave me direction and helped me keep momentum to overcome hardships. This was no different. Albeit, harder in ways I couldn't have imagined.

I knew I felt emotions stronger and more powerful than I ever had in my entire life when d-day happened. What I didn't understand was why they were so strong. They felt crippling...and for some time, I did let them cripple me. I turned to every single self-destructive avoidance tactic I knew and even added more to try to escape these feelings I was having that I couldn't make sense of. There were so many of them, each one so magnified, and some days it felt like an assault of all of them. All I wanted was for them to stop. I couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel.

When I got into IC, I remember thinking I didn't need it. I felt like my WS was the one that did this to me, she needed it, I was fine! My IC handled me delicately, and made it a point to focus on me throughout our sessions. Something I found confusing and challenging to do.

Over time my IC and I would celebrate the sessions where I didn't bring my ex-WS's name up, and managed to focus the sessions on self. I learned that my emotions were so strong from d-day because of the nature of how our emotions work as humans. As children, our emotional experiences are processed differently. Our brains are not developed enough to process them like we can as adults. We are also dependents and so leaving our homes and caretakers is not often feasible. So our magnificent bodies and neurological systems do what they know to do best and implement coping skills that help us survive our environment. Only many of these coping skills for me (and probably many others) do not serve us anymore into adulthood. My avoidance tactics were no longer serving me. It was time to stop rug sweeping emotions to survive, and learn how to process through them to come out on the other side.

I learned that it was these very coping skills I had in my youth that contributed to the magnitude of the emotions that overcame me after d-day. When we experience an emotion, our brains will trigger another time that we have experienced a similar circumstance that brought up that emotion. If we learned to avoid it in our past, our brain will continue to trigger that past emotion when we feel it in our present day, therefore magnifying the intensity of that emotion because it is being felt twofold...once from the unprocessed event(s) from our past, and now in the unprocessed trauma of our current experience.

Well, sadly, I had MANY unresolved traumas from my past and all of the emotions that d-day brought with it was like a cascade of dominoes falling triggering every single past event where I felt similar emotions that I had not resolved. That's why it was so encompassing. That's why I couldn't escape the emotions like I had before. It felt like a bomb had exploded and ALL of the feelings were there to stay no matter what I did to escape them. Nothing worked short of blacking out in an alcohol induced amnesia - and even that was short lived. I had to make a choice...do I lose myself in amplifying emotional avoidance tactics that don't work and become someone I do not recognize, or do I face these emotions head on and allow myself to feel them and process them?

The choice was not easy, allowing these emotions to be present put me in a state of anguish. But losing myself further was not fair to myself or my children. So I made the hard choice and started processing each emotion one by one with the help of my therapist.

As I did this, I was able to find an independence in myself I did not know I could. I was able to file for divorce from my ex-WS, I was able to conquer alcohol, and I broke many of my codependency's which allowed me the tools to build new relationships with everyone around me. Doing this gave me a life I only ever dreamed of but did not know could be. I thought codependent living was the only way to live. And burying my feelings and traumas was a strength and was the only way to survive.

I'm so grateful for my journey. I refer to my life and past experiences now from a pre-d-day and post-d-day lens, maise before she got help, and maise now. D-day itself, 6/9/2018, is not really a day I think about my ex-WS's infidelity. In fact, the date itself is not really that significant to me as it relates to her anymore.

I wanted to take the time to write this post because of today's date. Today, is June 10, 2024, six years almost to the date that I experienced my first d-day and my way of walking through this world changed.

Exactly one year ago today, I established my first romantic relationship since my ex-WS, with my current partner. He's everything I've never had. I know if I hadn't done this work, I would not have known how to allow myself a healthy partnership, or healthy relationships all around. I find it beautiful to have had our anniversary date fall on the date following my d-date anniversary. One being symbolic of trauma that brought about much needed change, and the following day being symbolic of changes made, a new journey, a happier existence and the creation of space for a healthy relationship to now flourish due to these changes.

If you've gotten this far, thank you for taking the time to read this post about my journey. I hope you and your loved ones have a beautiful day today. If you're still in the throws of pain from infidelity, know that there is beauty to come on the other side when you choose you.

[This message edited by maise at 9:18 PM, Monday, June 10th]

BW (SSM) D-Day: 6/9/2018 Status: waiting to finalize the divorce

"Our task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it."

— Rumi

posts: 954   ·   registered: Jan. 22nd, 2019   ·   location: Houston
id 8839131
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Shehawk ( member #68741) posted at 1:23 AM on Sunday, June 16th, 2024

Always feels good to hear/read a good comeback story!
Way to go Maise.
I wish you continued peace and healing.

"It's a slow fade...when you give yourself away" so don't do it!

posts: 1675   ·   registered: Nov. 5th, 2018   ·   location: US
id 8839892
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BearlyBreathing ( member #55075) posted at 3:20 AM on Sunday, June 16th, 2024

The healing we get to do as a BS is the only silver lining in all the mess of infidelity. We didn’t create the trauma, but like you said, the A bomb of infidelity brings all our traumas and issues to the surface. This is where we heal ourselves and become the best versions of ourselves. I experienced healing like you, and I can guarantee I would NEVER have addressed all that if not for the A and its aftermath.

It’s wonderful to hear your new beginning going well and that you can feel yourself getting stronger. Thank you for sharing.

Me: BS 57 (49 on d-day)Him: *who cares ;-) *. D-Day 8/15/2016 LTA. Kinda liking my new life :-)

**horrible typist, lots of edits to correct. :-/ **

posts: 6059   ·   registered: Sep. 10th, 2016   ·   location: Northern CA
id 8839906
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 maise (original poster member #69516) posted at 6:17 PM on Monday, June 17th, 2024

Thank you so much, Shehawk! I wish you peace as well smile

BarelyBreathing, yessss I agree. I would not have healed these parts of myself or even attended therapy had it not been for the A bringing these emotions to the forefront.

Thank you both so much for your comments and taking the time to read my share smile

BW (SSM) D-Day: 6/9/2018 Status: waiting to finalize the divorce

"Our task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it."

— Rumi

posts: 954   ·   registered: Jan. 22nd, 2019   ·   location: Houston
id 8840004
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