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Struggling with the gaslighting

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rumorhasit posted 4/29/2013 00:30 AM

When we broke up he said I wasnt supportive, kicked him when he was down, and was emotionally abusive.

Most days I know he's just trying to distort my memory of things but sometimes I'm scared he's right and I was a bad partner and mean and hurt him. And I just feel awful.

NoraLee posted 4/29/2013 00:38 AM

Doesn't matter! Even if all that is true...he should've 1) mentioned it earlier...2) asked for marriage counselling OR 3) asked for a divorce.

Listen Rumour...after Dday I realized my part in having a miserable marriage....and since I've started R, I've rectified those things...but I REFUSE to own ANY part of the A...that was his coping mechanism...mine was to throw myself into my job and kids to find fulfillment and happiness...I SURE AS HELL wish he had chosen the same coping mechanism...instead - falling in love with a mentally ill junkie with inflatable boobs was how he dealt with an unhappy marriage... My way brought in more money and made my kids a priority...his way made HIM a priority.

Don't fall for his blame-shifting.

rumorhasit posted 4/29/2013 01:01 AM

Oh I'm not saying I think I caused him to have an A. I get that.

I wasnt thrilled with everything either, especially him continuing to see a "friend" I asked him not to (and I feel it worth noting that she was the ONLY person I asked him not to see. Real friends and family? No issue!) But I didn't respond by getting a "friend" of my own.

I know I got upset sometimes, and the frustration from some situations leaked over into unrelated stuff. I've always seen myself as a caring, nurturing person though, and the idea that I wasn't makes me question who I am entirely.

I always felt that I was mainly responding to things he did or said that MOST women would have been upset by...

rumorhasit posted 4/29/2013 01:03 AM

What if thats who I am, unsupportive, mean, belittling, too sensitive? What if I will ruin all my relationships?

rumorhasit posted 4/29/2013 01:19 AM

Sometimes I wish he had just hit me.

I know that is disrespectful of all the battered women in the world, for me to say that, I just...

Maybe if he had just smacked me I would have shaped up.

haleyscomet posted 4/29/2013 02:20 AM

ur thinking if he hit you you would have tried harder to please him but trying harder to please him didn't work for me. It just made him take me even more for granted and feel more in control and that he could (and did) take even more advantage of me.

ps: as a child because i was beat i tried to please my mother. it didn't matter. nothing was good enough.

stop beating yourself up.

LearningToFly posted 4/29/2013 03:15 AM

My husband says the same thing. He is the one who is guilty of those things even before the affair.

I have reacted in anger to thoughtless things he has done. I explained many times how his behavior hurts me and he just makes excuse and continues. I am learning to control my emotions better.

Believe in yourself. You will never be perfect but thats okay. If you see something in yourself you don't like work on it but don't let his words define you. You are more than that.

rumorhasit posted 4/29/2013 05:18 AM

Thank you. I'm in IC, I'm trying to take care of myself.

I just can't stop going over the last weeks of the relationship in my mind, wishing I had done things differently. Wishing I had seen things sooner. I suddenly see everything in a different context. I hate him. I don't think he even cares that he doesn't see me anymore.

get-a-brain posted 5/1/2013 18:27 PM

The immense shame, guilt and self-blame that follows a spouses infidelity renders you helpless by making your life and world seem hopeless. Character-logical and physical self-blame assaults the betrayed spouse, feeling as if there is something inherently wrong with them. If the person who promised to love, honor and cherish them could betray them in such an unbearably painful way, they attribute this to some atrocious character defect within themselves, and this cause shame for who they are as they begin devaluing themselves their own positive and negative character traits. This is often perpetuated by cheating spouses insistence that the infidelity was caused as a result of something about the betrayed - this attribution is usually ascribed to some imagined or exaggerated character, physical or behavioral imperfection in the betrayed spouse. Character self-blame makes the future seem helpless, unchangeable and uncontrollable. The betrayal shatters self-esteem by diminishing personal value and minimizing the status of the betrayed in the relationship. Spouses begin to believe that their actions will not make a difference, because the problem is an irreversible fault within themselves. They beat themselves up with statements such as
I'm too trusting
I'm too Nieve
I'm too Fat / Thin
I'm too Ugly
I'm too Gullible
I'm too Tall / Short
I'm too Caring
I'm Stupid

Betrayed spouses shame and belittle themselves for trusting, loving, hoping, and caring. The on-slot of self-blame undermining their self-esteem. In cases of infidelity, the amount of emotional pain the betrayed's proof of how awful they must be perceived by their spouse. If the person whom you thought loved you, could willingly and deliberately cause you this much pain, they must then find everything about you intolerable.
Character logical self-blame is associated with higher levels of depression and self-esteem loss. When the powerlessness becomes unbearable - to gain a sense of control over the helplessness - the betrayed spouse moves into behavioral self-blame.

Behavioral self-blame makes betrayed spouses feel as if they should have done something differently to avoid the betrayal. Trauma survivors have the tendency to believe that they brought the trauma upon themselves. Behavioral self-blame reduces the perception of vulnerability. The belief that a change in behavior will reduce the likelihood of reoccurrence of infidelity is seen as an adaptive coping method. Behavioral self-blame also promotes the belief in the ability to control, change and avoid negative outcomes. Believing that the future can be different, promotes positive feelings of control and motivation warding off the helplessness felt. Thoughts are invested in strategies spouses can apply in the future and/or similar circumstances. These strategies can help avoid re-victimization, but gives the spouse a false sense of control. Behavioral self-blame can also raise anger and hate towards the self. Anger rises due to the thought that one could have done something to prevent the infidelity, and yet did nothing. Intense self-hate reduces the ability to cope, adapt to the trauma, and increases the risk of suicidal behavior. Behavioral self-blame is perpetuated by theories that a betrayed spouse is partially responsible for an affair. Betrayed spouses minds flood with thoughts of "IF ONLY", "I SHOULD HAVE", "WHY DIDN'T I". Betrayed spouses think that if they could have stopped it before, then changing their behavior now can stop it from ever happening again in the future. "At least if my lack of vigilance was the problem, I can prevent a future tragedy by watching more closely." The guilt and anger generated toward the self keeps the mind looping in an endless search for the defect, behavior or circumstances that they can control.

Read more at: http://www.healingafteraffairs-bloomington.info/infidelity/trauma-of-infidelity.html
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