I would also second the 180. I never did this but have read very positive reports about it.
This too shall pass
I edit a lot because that stupid box is so small!
You do not have to sit around hoping he'll pick you again. Stop giving him that kind of power over you. You tell him how it's going to be. Tell him to snap out of it and start acting married now. OR, kick his weasley ass to the curb. Hefty bag his shit & toss it out the door.
Do not sit around in tears waiting & wondering.
Anyone telling their partner that someone else is " the girl of his dreams" is beyond cruel. I am not sure you have any option other than to boot him out. You deserve much better.
Please read the 180 in the Healing Library under BS FAQs #11.
Don't let him have his cake and eat it too; he'll just continue to want the best of both worlds. Put up an ad for a roommate if you need one (try Craigslist, roommates.com, and your local papers), pack up all his stuff for him and let him try to make it work with the new girl. Reality (of living together, splitting bills, etc) will ruin their romance, don't you worry :) They're living in fantasyland right now, where there's no laundry, no bills, no dishes, etc. Don't let them.
You were very wise to work to establish boundaries with your WS. And he was very unwise to ignore you. The book Not Just Friends by Shirley Glass might be a good one for him to read, when he defogs (or perhaps to help him defog, if he's looking for solutions rather than excuses at this point); it describes the healthy walls that couples erect around their relationships.
ALL relationships go through phases. Life can be mundane. But that doesn't make the "ooh! shiny!" girl who's new and different, "the girl of his dreams."
That's just...profoundly immature. Unless, of course, he wasn't ever really invested in your relationship. I bring that (really sad and unpleasant) possibility up reluctantly, but because it's what I discovered about my relationship--obscenely late in the game (we were married 24 years, and had been together over 33 when I was told that he married me because I loved him---not because he loved me).
Examine what makes your relationship and this man truly special---and really think hard (during this time when he's "thinking") about whether it's a relationship worthy of the hard, hard work required for reconciliation.
Right now, he's not interested in reconciliation.
he said that he can not leave me nor can he leave OP.He says that she is the girl of his dreams.
His words indicate he wants to do what we refer to, here, quite often, as "cake-eating." In other words, he wants to have his cake and eat it, too.
He wants his nice, loving, reliable SO (YOU!), and his ooh! shiny! new sidepiece.
Uh, no. It doesn't work that way. He may SAY he can't give you up and won't give her up, but he doesn't get to make that decision for you. You are the one who makes that decision.
That he's added that the OW is the "girl of his dreams" may just be idiotic affair drivel, or it may be true. It doesn't really matter. What matters is that he feels entitled to explore other relationships while in a relationship with you. Because, really, there are a bazillion people in this world, many of whom would be fabulously wonderful partners for any of us. When we commit to a relationship, there is the implicit (and explicit, if vows are exchanged) agreement NOT to explore the possibility of happiness with others, but rather to commit to the one person we're with, living life with its ups and downs and working to love, even when it is difficult. Because love is a choice.
What YOU need to do, right now, is erect some boundaries for yourself. Clearly, he is lacking boundaries, but you do not have to.
This is not acceptable to you, correct? Then there is NO reason why you have to accept it. Being in close proximity at work and requiring boundaries to keep other women---other women right under your nose in the workplace! (could he have been more insensitive and cruel?)--does not make you clingy. It makes you sensible and devoted and committed to your relationship.
Please don't let him turn HIS failures into yours. He did NOT cheat because you are "clingy." He cheated because ...he wanted to. Really, it's as simple as that. He may have deeper issues, a "why" that informed his ability to give himself permission to cheat. (And yes---that is something I would require him to explore in IC; for me that was a non-negotiable for attempting to R.) But really, when push comes to shove, he cheated because he wanted to. And it has NOTHING to do with your shortcomings.
Could it be that you're not meant to be together? Yes. So, during this time you've "given him time to think," it'd be a good idea to do thinking of your own.
What is it, about this man, that makes him worth the pain and hard work of reconciliation after such an in-your-face, eff-you betrayal? It takes 2-5 years to reconcile from infidelity---does he have it in him to put in the hard work? Is he fabulous enough--really, the man of YOUR dreams--to make he hard work worthwhile? Will he work hard to erect appropriate boundaries so this never happens again, or will he continue to shift blame to you?
Infidelity aside, what is special about him? Is he a man with whom you truly wish to spend the rest of your life?
If not, then I would not invest any more time on the relationship. I'd work hard to heal, independently, and move on.
(A word about healing: really, your healing will be independent whether you're with him or not; both the WS and BS must work to heal independently, while working to heal as a couple----so you have to assess whether he is willing and able to address both aspects of healing; reconciliation will not work unless both of you are all in).
Whether you intend to reconcile or not, he intends to eat cake. So your immediate need is to CLOSE THE BAKERY.
He doesn't get to have both you and his OW. Simple as that. That is a boundary you MUST erect. "Let" him think. (That's in quotation marks because, really, you have no control over what he does. You can only control your own thoughts, actions, and feelings.) While he does so, familiarize yourself with the 180 (it's #11 in the FAQs for BSs in the Healing Library; click on the yellow box to the left), and put it into action.
Until and unless he is willing to commit to YOUR relationship, 100 percent, then there is absolutely no sense in expending your precious energy on anything other than your own healing and well-being.
Take gentle care of yourself. Remember to eat--and if it's difficult, frequent small meals can help. (I used protein shakes a lot.) Drink plenty of fluids (but skip alcohol--it doesn't help). Rest as much as you are able, and if you have difficulty, explore sleep aids with your doctor. (Often, something mild like over-the-counter diphenhydramine--generic for Benadryl--or melatonin works well. Other times, Rx sleep aids are more helpful; either way, talk with your doctor.) Regular exercise can help tremendously, especially when the anger phase arrives. (And it will come and go, the anger.)
Always, always remember: YOU ARE WORTHY OF LOVE. This has NOTHING to do with your shortcomings, but rather your WS's. You DO have the power to heal yourself---but you can't reconcile on your own. Until it becomes clear whether he can or will commit to R, pull yourself back---for your OWN strength and well-being, use the 180. It will not push your WS away; he's already gone. It WILL help you gain clarity and strength. And it may--as a side effect (though this is not its aim)---let your WS see what he is losing, by continuing down the path of infidelity.
Keep your eyes peeled, in this forum, for the posts with bulls-eyes in front of them. They are classics that contain a lot of really great advice and information for those who are newly betrayed (or newly learning of the betrayal).
Here are the ones I find most useful:
Before You Say Reconcile (so important!) http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=406548
Understanding the 180: http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=232785
Tactical Primer: http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=235051
Boundaries and Consequences 101: http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=385631
ETA: Sorry for the novel-length post. I know it's a lot to digest. Just take in what you can....and feel free to PM any time.
[This message edited by solus sto at 11:51 PM, May 26th (Sunday)]
As everyone has said, this is not his choice to make! If he has to think about it after 4 years, then this man is not a mature, loving partner for you. I'm so sorry -- you deserve better. Sending you strength for the days ahead...
Just my thoughts on what you posted, he says this is the "girl of his dreams." Then, uh, wow, he treats the "girl of his dreams" pretty crappy. If she was so darned special, then he would have officially ended things with you. Would he really risk her finding out that he had another girlfriend?? The truth is he is a PIG. Seriously, he wants his reliable woman (you) and shiny new girlfriend (her). He wants his cake and to eat it too. And now he has you on the defensive, hoping you will work even harder at being a good girlfriend instead of tossing his ass to the curb and reminding him how fabulous you are and that you don't need to put up with his crap. It really sounds like HE needs to work harder at being a good boyfriend..
Please don't compete with this woman for his affections, because the truth is that he is the broken one, and you really need to decide if he is worth it. From what you've posted, especially given how cruel he was to you, I'd say he's certainly not worth it..
Big hugs to you. So sorry for what he has put you through.. Please know that you are so much better than that..
[This message edited by ButterflyGirl at 12:40 AM, May 27th (Monday)]
Go live life and be happy.
The best revenge for these people is to be happy.
Once they make you Plan B - a backup safety net in case the new hot sizzling relationship doesn't work out - the relationship is all over anyhow. Done. Finished. Even if he and the new girl break up, you'll find it difficult to put it all back together and feel the same way about him again.
Most of the people who reconcile here are those with many years of memories and history, family entwined, have kids and both have a fear of hurting the kids, and it causes them to stick through a lot of crap and gives WS second thoughts about leaving and cheating again (though some do, anyhow), and gives a lot of guilt which a four-year boyfriend won't necessarily have. Even for those reconciling, this means a lot of misery and pain,off and on, for the next five to 10 years, and a changed relationship and trust. Your wayward seems to be intent on keeping his new girlfriend, and unless you're into polygamy and self-debasement, you have no choice except to leave, detach and try to heal.
I don't think your Wayward Significant Other has it in him to tough it out while he is in sexual lala land.
In fact, he's probably just slowly walking backward out the door with the "I love you but I'm not in love with you" speech and the "I love both of you" crap.
You can leave with your dignity and finances spared, or stay and fight and make him lose respect for you and you'll likely lose anyhow.
He can't miss you until you're gone, anyhow, so if you are determined to save it, then you'll have to go in order for him to miss you. He won't snap out of lala land until you do, if he ever snaps out of it at all.
[This message edited by Heavy Sigh at 9:16 AM, May 27th (Monday)]
Sadly, that is just not how it works. And if you think about it, you really don't want to have to do that. It is demeaning to you. IF you go down that path, and your WBF ends up *choosing* you, then you can pretty well expect that the rest of the time that you spend with him will be miserable because YOU will always have to be on your game.....with the unspoken, underlying 'threat' that he'll just go *find* someone else if/when YOU don't measure up. <--FUCK THAT!!
Sure, he can take his time to decide.
But you are not just some non-entity in this equation. YOU can decide that you don't deserve to be treated as expendable and cut HIM out of YOUR life. You get to have a *say* in this too.
Read Solus' post over and over. And Heavy Sigh's.
IMO, you should *Next* this guy so that you'll be available for a life-partner whose maturity level rises above that of a 4 year old.
[This message edited by gonnabe2016 at 9:35 AM, May 27th (Monday)]
In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.
IMO, you should *Next* this guy
If it your house then ask him to leave immediately.
He is definitely cake eating.
Take your time. Relax and don't take decisions in a hurry.
See what you want and go from there.
Like @LifeisBroken said good that this came to light now instead of 20 years down the line. You have a lot of power than you think.
I have read the 180 and I will closely follow it.
This will be important as you all work together. Be kind to yourself, the 180 can take some practice. If you fall off, just start over.