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What I'm sorry for...

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ThornyRose posted 7/20/2012 18:19 PM

My H encouraged me to share this letter I wrote him. We had been having a casual conversation about something non-A related and I said "I'm sorry" he said "what do you have to be sorry for?" I laughed sarcastically and decided I needed to make a list of all the things I am sorry for, so here it is...

This is a list of some of the things I am sorry for and regret over the last 9+ months. I know this is not all-inclusive. I know there are many more things I could add to this list but I wanted you to know that I do think of all of these things and that I am sorry. I know I still appear aloof at times and as if I have removed myself from the situation. I am still working on allowing myself to be present and feel things as I experience them instead of waiting until I am alone. I am hopeful that someday I will have that degree of openness with you, as I never have with anyone else.

I am sorry that I didn't allow myself to be vulnerable once I felt more secure with you, once we were married

I'm sorry I held onto all of my fears of rejection

I'm sorry that this affected our bonding and helped to create a wall between us in areas of our marriage

I'm sorry I didn't allow myself to feel intimacy with you during sex

I'm sorry that I didn't tell you what I needed so that we could discuss it like friends

I'm sorry I never thought of you as my best friend for many of the reasons stated above

I'm sorry I never knew you as the person you were at your core

I'm sorry I didn't try harder to find that person when you were depressed and unhappy

I'm sorry I chose to hide behind the kids, our friends and within myself instead of talking to you about it

I'm sorry that I found more value in my friendship with OBS and OM than in a friendship with you

I'm sorry for all of the times I wished you would put on a happy face for me

I'm sorry for all the times I wished you weren't here so that I didn't have to see your pain

I'm sorry that I allowed myself to cross boundaries of friendship with OM

I'm sorry that I became obsessed with spending time with him and OBS in order to feel good

I'm sorry I didn't tell him to stop that first night OM kissed me

I'm sorry I allowed myself to think that his attention made me special and that I deserved to feel that way

I'm sorry I didn't tell you about it the next morning when I was sober

I'm sorry I chose to start an A by these actions and that initially I didn't realize that's what I was doing, had
I told you about it you could have shaken some sense into me

I'm sorry for all of the intimate conversations I shared with him, especially the ones I initiated

I'm sorry for all of the glances, stares, and touches behind your back

I'm sorry for all of the glances, stares, and touches behind OBS's back

I'm sorry for all of the glances, stares, and touches when our kids were outside

I'm sorry that I used his kids as a vehicle to feed my obsessive desire to see him more

I'm sorry that I tried to put our girls in the big sister role of his girls to attempt to join our families

I'm sorry I sent pictures of myself that should have only been shared with you

I'm sorry I encouraged him to send pictures of himself

I'm sorry for all the times I wished I could be with him or talk to him instead of you

I'm sorry I allowed myself to fall into old patterns and obsess over being perceived as fun and wanted and desperately do things I thought he would find attractive so that he would want me the most, chose me
over OBS in his heart and mind so that I would feel loved

I'm sorry I did not value myself enough to see what I was doing, how tortured I was making myself, how I was sacrificing my morals and values and hiding this from myself

I'm sorry for all of the times I kissed him in our house

I'm sorry for all the times I wanted and allowed him to touch me

I'm sorry for all the times I touched him

I'm sorry that I lied to everyone (you, my mom, our friends) about my relationship with him saying we were "just friends"

I'm sorry I had sex with him

I'm sorry for giving him part of me that I couldn't give to you

I'm sorry I didn't value you

I'm sorry I didn't see the value in our marriage and the life we had built together

I'm sorry that by my actions I was throwing our lives together away and didn't see what I was doing for what it was

I'm sorry for giving him oral sex when it was something I almost never did for you

I'm sorry that at the time I felt I had no walls with him and prided myself on that, on being able to open up so completely with him and viewing this as being magical and meant to be

I'm sorry for flaunting my relationship with him in front of you as if to say "see, HE wants me, HE finds me attractive"

I'm sorry for allowing him to give me an O on our couch while you sat on the stairs watching in disbelief I think I may be most sorry for this because of the mental movies this has given you and the amount of anger you have towards yourself for not seeing it for what it was and stopping it

I'm sorry I denied it vehemently when you asked me what was going on

I'm sorry that when I did confirm your thoughts of what you saw I showed no remorse and was angry at you for your reaction

I'm sorry that my thoughts were of how to keep my relationship going with OM and the panic I felt that your discovery may change that.

I'm sorry that I was not thinking of you and how you were feeling. I only saw anger not pain and I tuned it out

I'm sorry that OM and I talked extensively about how we could fix the situation so that we could continue our relationship

I'm sorry that I allowed myself to become completely obsessed with OM as my source of happiness and comfort

I'm sorry I projected my every want and need onto his persona, thinking he could fill everything I felt was lacking in me

I'm sorry that even while we were working on our marriage and getting stronger I would still miss the feeling I got from him

I'm sorry for all the times I was defensive with you trying to guard my feelings out of guilt and shame

I'm sorry that I am unable to give you what you desire in a detailed account of certain events related to the A

I'm sorry that I lied to you so effectively and for so long that you are now unable to know when I am telling you the truth

I'm sorry that you can't focus at work because you are so consumed by thoughts of the A

I'm sorry you have to take time out of your day to check up on me and make sure I have not contacted OM

I'm sorry that I turned your best friend into your worst enemy

I'm sorry that my actions caused you to feel so much despair and pain that you considered suicide

I'm sorry that you will never be able to have the innocence to look at me the same adoring way ever again

I'm sorry I robbed you of your security in our marriage

I'm sorry that you bare the burden of my betrayal

I love you and respect you for all that you have done to try to heal our marriage and for staying strong.

confused615 posted 7/20/2012 18:43 PM

Wow. That's one hell of a list. And I mean that in a good way.

As a BW,I get tired of hearing the general,"Im sorry." I've told my FWH I need him to tell me what he is sorry for,and be specific. So then he tells me,"Im sorry I hurt you. Im sorry I fucked up. Im sorry I destroyed our marriage." And that's about it.

It's clear you've done alot of work on yourself.

Good luck to you and your husband.

Jrazz posted 7/20/2012 18:52 PM

(((Thorny Rose & DWBH)))

WalkinOnEggshelz posted 7/20/2012 19:23 PM


That's beautiful! Keep up the good work. Remember those things you are sorry for and bring them up when DWBH is struggling.

You are off to a great start.

lost_in_toronto posted 7/20/2012 19:54 PM

Thank you for sharing.

[This message edited by lost_in_toronto at 7:55 PM, July 20th (Friday)]

HoldingTogether posted 7/20/2012 20:02 PM

Wow Thornyrose!

That is one touching, sincere, heartfelt and thorough list. Sounds like you have been doing a lot of work on the "getting it" front. Congratulations and good work. I know this stuff is hard.

One small gentle suggestion. Not a critique, just a suggestion:

I am sorry says: "I feel badly about my actions and I regret them."

I apologize says: "I regret how my actions have made you feel."

Small but crucial distinction in my opinion. Not that "I am sorry" isn't important. It is! it is vital. But start adding some "I apologize for" into the mix.

Believe me it goes a long way.

Keep up the good work and I firmly believe you guys are going to make it through this thing.


gonnabe2016 posted 7/20/2012 20:38 PM

Thank you for sharing your letter, TR. It took a lot of courage to do that.

The fact that you took it upon yourself to compose it after a casual in which you could have just gone with his:

"what do you have to be sorry for?"

I applaud you for being pro-active and putting your heart and soul into it.

Your remorse and love for your husband was very apparent in that letter.

It was beautiful. Again. Thanks for sharing it.

ThornyRose posted 7/20/2012 20:46 PM

Thanks everyone for the words of encouragement. I have not posted/shared much since I joined but I find huge value in everything I read here. It was not easy for me to share such a personal and graphic letter but I hope it will help someone else that is struggling.

WOES, thanks so much for keeping tabs on me and encouraging me along the way.

HT, I have always thought of those words as synonymous. Thanks for clarifying. I will definitely keep that in mind from now on. Thanks for your response. I know you have been a great help to DWBH and I value your input greatly. You seem to hit the nail on the head so often.

rollercoaster80 posted 7/20/2012 21:15 PM

Wow.....That must have been hard to write.

As hard as it would be to see this, I believe every BS would appreciate an in depth I'm sorry letter.

You have certainly examined yur actions.

Good work.

DWBH posted 7/21/2012 11:54 AM

This was the most sincere, no-walls gesture to date, and has given me more hope and optimism than anything else throughout this whole ordeal. Sharing it with the SI community shows me you have the courage to look at that reflection in the mirror, and own your decisions, and the consequences... and most importantly, I see and acknowledge the hard work you are doing on your own!

I love ya, baby! <3

Neithan posted 7/21/2012 11:58 AM

I wish I'd received something like that from my WW.

GeauxTigers posted 7/21/2012 12:00 PM

Good list. So much more powerful than "I'm sorry I hurt you", or (even worse) "I'm sorry you were hurt". One question, though, and this one would bug the heck out of me

I'm sorry that I am unable to give you what you desire in a detailed account of certain events related to the A

Why not?

ThornyRose posted 7/21/2012 12:48 PM

Thank you DWBH for saying that! It means a lot to me that this helped us move another step forward.

Good question GeauxTigers! I was referring to the pictures that were exchanged between myself and MOM. H has been very troubled by not only the fear and rage that the ones I sent may still exist somewhere out there but also by the fact that I was unable to give him dates that the pics were sent. Initially when I started coming clean with all the details I was confused on the order of how things developed and gave some erroneous dates. To me it felt like the A spanned a much greater time than it actually did. The PA was almost a year ago and I have a notoriously horrible memory. Once H helped me with a detailed time-line I was able to better pinpoint the month in which the pics were sent but still have no reference for the exact month or day. At this point I wish I had kept a copy of the pics on my phone so I could go back and know with certainty the dates but I did not so we just need to find a way to lessen his pain. We have a very open line of communication now and this helps both of us tremendously.

Thanks again for everyone's responses. It was very difficult for me to share such an intimate part of our relationship and myself. Thanks for making it easier.


dawn10275 posted 7/22/2012 20:50 PM

This is amazing. I am trying to write things in my journal about my remorse and reading this brings tears to my eyes and stings my heart. Thank you for sharing.

reallyscrewedup7 posted 7/23/2012 05:12 AM


Thank you so much for sharing this, not just for DWBH (and let me tell you, this will really aid in his healing), but for all the BSs out there that need to see what remorse looks like.

There was so much pain in that apology. I hope it helps you in your healing.

Strength and blessings to you and DWBH.

2_4giving4_2long posted 7/23/2012 05:32 AM


Awesome ! I LOVE LOVE LOVE it when a WS shares something so insightful and heartfelt. What a good way for others to learn what being sorry really is.

Great job!

OnAnIsland posted 7/23/2012 06:00 AM

Thank you for sharing this. Keep up the hard work.

numb&dumb posted 7/23/2012 09:03 AM

I have found that when my W takes the time to write things down or write me a letter they seem much more valuable to me.

I guess saying things are hard and the obvious trust issues involved, putting them on paper makes them easier to believe.

My W actually wrote me a letter awhile back that I carry with me and read once awhile. It helps sometimes.

It is so important to know 100% that you are sorry. It may be difficult, shameful, but it really does help a BS heal some. It is part of the process and if it was easy SI wouldn't need to exists.

Keep at it, you are on the right path.

Heartbroken1993 posted 7/23/2012 10:01 AM

ThornyRose, I read this over the weekend and I was and still am moved from this post.

I wish I could have received a letter like this.

Dance4Me posted 7/23/2012 11:08 AM

I got the very same "I am sorry for..." list, written by my FWH, about nine months post dday and while we were spending a very romantic weekend away from the kids. This type of heartfelt letter was certainly a healing tool in R for the both of us. I read it outloud with my FWH present...we both cried during much of this three page, typed letter. Every once and a while, while I am having a "bad day" I pull out my H's words just to remind myself what it is that he is truly sorry for...I am almost three years out!

In my opinion, any WS's that are remorseful would benefit greatly by writing a letter, such as this, to their BS once they truly understand the depth of their betrayal....and when their whys were figured out. It certainly helped us!

Great job Thorny!

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