Meanwhile, an old "friend" from high school, actually the older brother of my actual high school friend, had shown interest in me for over a year. He was always so accepting of whatever I wanted, seemed understanding that I didn't want another relationship or anything like that. "You know you've always been like a little sister to me. If that's all you want, I'm ok with that too, just please don't cut me out of your life again. I miss our talks." I do have FOO issues of abandonment, have always pushed every person (other than MrWNW) away in my life, including prolonged periods where I've even cut out my own parents. I spoke with OM for a few days over IM, then a week over the phone, then another week over Facetime, and soon, I was planning an innocent dinner for him here. (LOTS of pushing from friends and family that I needed to "make new friends, live life again".) Of course, that day, his plans got tied up, and he just so happened not to be available to be here until late in the evening around 9pm. I didn't reschedule. (huge CA issues too) MrWNW asks what the hell I thought would happen with his arriving so late, but it truly didn't cross my mind then. OM arrived with a half gallon of vodka and daiquiri mix too, "just in case you like these". MrWNW wants to know what the hell I thought would happen if he was drinking. I really hadn't thought about it. Of course, if he was drinking, I wouldn't want him to drive drunk. He'd need to stay. Well, that EA turned into a PA that night. I was SO sick from it, I was actually afraid I'd vomit on him.
I knew that MrWNW would be hurt if he knew. I still didn't feel I had an A. MrWNW had clearly ended it, had me move, but I knew he wasn't expecting me to move on. (...and I still believed he had been faithful all that year...a new accomplishment for him.) It just seemed unfair after all his hard work, that I would be the first to move on. So I knew I needed to make sure there were clear boundaries with MrWNW, we wouldn't be physical anymore....strictly platonic. However, the very next day, before I'd found the words to tell him, MrWNW arrived, to help with some projects around my new home, handyman stuff, and we were physical. I was too afraid to tell him why we couldn't be, yet I was even more sick than the night before with OM. Now, I didn't even know who I was. I literally was sent by ambulance that night to the hospital with some horrendous stomach virus, extremely dehydrated from vomiting. I wonder now if it was simply my nerves were THAT bad from the ordeal.
There was no going forward with MrWNW. We had sunk that ship. And there was this PhD "kind" long-time friend "considerate" person wanting me in his life. So, before MrWNW had a chance to come here again, I sent a message to him that I did of course still want the good parts of our friendship to remain, but it would HAVE to be platonic, I needed clear boundaries. He immediately smelled foul. He arrived here hurt, cold, distant, to return my things. I begged him to understand, but he asked me if there was another. I didn't deny, but I deflected, enough that that weekend, he drove here, late at night, missing me, believing me alone, wanting to confide in his only true confidante in life, and I couldn't let him in. OM was here. MrWNW's world crashed. I will NEVER forget that look on his face, or the look the next day, or that I still see from time to time.
I know that the first thing that struck me was MrWNW's emotions and expressions. They were raw, true, undeniably familiar to me. He genuinely felt I had had an affair. That I couldn't deny. I chalked it up to a long time of just believing he believed he could always do whatever and I'd never move on. I still didn't understand I had an A. I did, however, truly welcome that for the very first time since my first Dday in Oct '10, he was TRULY remorseful for all the hell I'd walked through with him over the past year and a half. If I needed to accept the madhatter title for us to recover, I could do that....because regardless, it was clear, he would need me to help him heal just as IF I had an actual A. So of course, I've had NC with OM, (and I've truly seen how that all unfolded and have a deep HATRED for OM and have since about 2weeks into our R.) I've respected his triggers, stayed calm while being called some pretty terrible things at first, held him when he needed, etc. I did that for HIS feelings, not because I felt responsible. In fact, I've heinously stated to him several times, my actions HELPED us, that he'd never have reached empathy without it, he'd never have been ready to R, that I'd never have looked OM's way if he hadn't abandoned me again. I'm pretty sure at this point, I am absolute scum of the earth for the words he's endured while dealing with his own remorse of his actions and my piling on guilt for my own actions at the same time.
A month into R, I had my last Dday, where MrWNW gave me full disclosure, confessing to dating sites, affair sites, dates, and 3 PAs over the past year. So that just fueled my sense of justification even further. I've been lost in some victim world for months.
Not until yesterday, almost 7mos into "recovery" did I realize with a force of truth that fell on me like an anvil...... I DID have an affair! Not just because I lied, not just because I let MrWNW in the day after the first encounter with OM, but because no matter what ever happened before, NO ONE deserves an affair, NO ONE, especially this amazing man that has been struggling to handle all my "crazy" over these past several months deserves the true pain he's experienced at my decisions. I was his background person (Susan Anderson term), his security, and on that horrible night in September, I took that from him, and I crashed his reality as he had known. He's been lost in depression for months now, and I've been frustrated, not understanding. Did he deserve for me to stay through his infidelities? No. But I chose to. I chose to allow him to believe I was accepting of him, in whatever state. I did not end it first. I moved on, then once I had my security blanket / backup plan, THEN made a piss poor attempt at cakeeating. In many ways, my A was so much worse because it was an EA too, one that would've taken me from him completely. His PAs were not like that. I had always claimed I'd never be capable....put myself on some pedestal of righteousness. MrWNW believed me, now he struggles to believe anything I ever say. He's lost a tremendous amount of respect for me, although he tries to resume it, and he can barely stand to be in my new home, even after all these months, because he has horrendous mind movies here of me with OM. What a true mess I've caused.
When I talked with MrWNW last night, confessing how I'd been dragging my heals in R, feeling the victim all this time, like I hadn't had an A because he had had so many before, that I had only been going through the motions of his healing because I accepting his feelings as real but hadn't truly felt accountable, I was crying, and ashamed, and I could barely face him. He sat there listening, intently, asking questions occasionally. I waited for him to just totally lose it on me. I had finally realized that my A very well COULD be a dealbreaker for him. He was not obligated to stay just because I had stayed through his. After all these years, MY decision could be the dealbreaker, and I'd need to accept that. I was ready, I deserve that after all I've put him through these past 7mos, and instead what I heard was with conviction....
"I forgive you."
I'm not ready to accept that just yet, as I'm nowhere near ready to forgive myself, and I told him I understand if he wants to take that back later, but I truly am appreciative of the words.
Feels like day one of recovery for me, but I'm ready, and I needed to start with putting my story out here, my accountability, so now, I can move on authentically towards recovering.
[This message edited by windowsnotwalls at 3:49 PM, March 30th (Saturday)]
Do you really feel that you have a WS role when all indication was that your WH was into other women? Why has his cake-eating become yours?
Sure, you wanted to hold on, but the information you were receiving from his was that he was gone, so what were you supposed to do?
Move out per his request. That I did. And sever any relationship elements. That I did not. I allowed him to help me move in, allowed him to come over, allowed him to continue to sleep with me, even after I had started a new relationship.
All the things I had said to him over the course of his As, I did to him in that moment. I took away his right to choose to be intimate with me had he known I was with someone else. I could've put him at risk for an STD unknowingly (fortunately, that did not happen). He had been berated by me for a year and a half of all the horrible things that a BS goes through, and when he arrived the next day, I said nothing, and still was intimate with him, I did to him all the things I had told him were so awful over the years.
No, he wasn't faithful at the time. I stayed stuck on that fact for many months. However, I didn't know that at the time. At the time of my decisions, I believed he had stayed true to me since his last A, which ended early Jan '12. The first weekend that OM was here, MrWNW actually had taken one of his OW to his friend's for the weekend. I didn't know that though. It was a great source of "justification" for many months for me. However, in reality, it is a false justification, when I didn't know that at the time. It doesn't excuse my actions. I did to him what he did to me, not out of malice, but the result is the same. It devastated him no less than my own devastation.
You were given certain information by him. Who can really cut ties 100% when they are cut out of their spouses life? Who? I believe it is completely normal for someone to do what you did. Yes, the STD risk was there. you should not of slept with two men in two nights. Not fair to either of them. but you know what? It wasn't fair to you to do that either, and now you are beating yourself up for decisions that were made when you only knew part of the story.
Your WH reaction upon learning about what you had done is very convenient for him really. Was that his wake-up call? Sounds like it. Was his wake-up call just a realization that you really had begun working on moving on, rather than feeling the hurt of a BS? I think so.
Like I said above, you can be the WS if you want to, but I don't really think you are.
Just my opinion.
MrWNW believed me, now he struggles to believe anything I ever say. He's lost a tremendous amount of respect for me
Yeah, I'm betting his relationship with "respect" for anyone is spotty, at best.
What Baxter said. Look, I get the reason you feel you had an affair but you're focusing on the wrong "victim" here of your choices. YOU. You handled a messed up situation by accepting less than for yourself from others. That's a massive self injury.
You know how some people describe cutting? We can "cut" emotionally too. People cut to get relief from strong feelings they don't have tools to process.
It's a way of amping intensity to feel something other than excrutiating pain they have no control over. Yeah it hurts but we're in control of it.
I used to court risk very physically enjoying the strain and bruises, scrapes, gashes (at times) or fighting even if I got my ass beat.
That's what you did. Your husband is no victim. He just didn't like the fact you showed control over yourself and moving on. It's like spitting on the whole chocolate box so no one else wants any. Sorry, doesn't work that way.
Hon, get into counseling, better stress releases and work on putting both Darwin rejects in the rear view.
'til the roof comes off. 'til the lights go out. 'til my legs give out, can't shut my mouth
You handled a messed up situation by accepting less than for yourself from others. That's a massive self injury.
IMO there is a difference between betrayal/infidelity and a single woman/man having some sex. Did me having some sex as a separated single woman make the X feel betrayed? Not my problem. My problem was the damage it did to me - damage I didn't even notice for many many months afterwards.
I have wondered if we cause damage to ourselves to try to match the brokenness of our SO OR if its always been there laying dormant just waiting to emerge. Either way now that I see it I know that an area I need to dig around in.