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Healing at different speeds...

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sodamnlost posted 5/28/2013 09:07 AM

I am hoping I can actually articulate this issue. We are on different timetables as far as processing and healing goes. This is becoming a MAJOR issue and I have no idea what to do. Officially in R for like 6 weeks, Dday was 9-20-12. I process faster than he does. When we married, he was more in touch with his feelings than I was. Over the last 4 years or so - he lost that ability. He is finally starting to be able to actually explain and identify feelings again which is good but wow - it's so slow. He is meeting all the basics of R very well, transparency, honesty, NC etc. He sees what his A has done to him, to me and to us. he gets the *NOW* stuff but NONE of the *THEN* stuff if that makes sense. However, his lack of "going back" to figure out any aspects of his A is driving me bat-shit crazy. I do *GET* that people process at different speeds, I do. That doesn't help me though. I am at the point where daily I have to seriously fight the urge to give up. I don't want to. We have talked about this a lot. He says he isn't avoiding it on purpose, he just doesn't know how. I am having mega issues feeling safe. he isn't doing a single thing now that makes me suspect he is having current issues but he can't see his faulty ways of thinking during his A, so how would he even know if his head started acting all stupid again? He has always had BIG justification issues, how can he stop them if he can't even identify what were his lies to himself were during his A?

He is in IC but I have sat in on a session where the IC basically told him something HUGE he did before the A that helped lead him down that nasty path - the way he turned off emotions when I got sick. BINGO! That was HUGE. Somehow, WH just didn't GET the significance of that concept. So he just doesn't *SEE* this stuff, even when his IC points it out. He says he feels like a 4 YO emotionally. Sadly, he is kinda right.

How can I get through this part? Patience has never been my strong point and I am just struggling so much here with this. I know I can't *MAKE* him figure this out, I know it is on him. How on earth do I not drive myself crazy with this one? I can handle 2x4's if needed - I realize this issue is both of us, not just him.

Althea posted 5/28/2013 09:56 AM

This is so frustrating, and something we struggled with a lot until very recently. I don't know that I have any answers for you, I think it is a process that takes a long time for some people. In the case of my WH, he spent a lifetime developing certain coping mechanisms that were killing our marriage. It takes time to unlearn those things. One thing that helped in our case is that I told WH that I needed more from him in terms of exploring the why's of the A behavior. Not just why he cheated, but we needed to go back through his mindset for the years where he was emotionally checked out of our marriage and focusing his attention outside of our family. I made him go back through a 5 year period and tell me what he was thinking about major life events during that time as well as certain incidents that happened that were clearly affair precursors. I wanted to know WTH was going through his head. It was hard, hard for him to remember, and hard for me to hear. I had to push a little to get him to see why it was so important. When he did it though, it really helped us both. He could look at his messed up thought process through his current lens, which is so much healthier; and I could see what things were going on for him that he was internalizing.

I guess try telling your WH that you need more from him in order to feel safe? If he balks, try reframing, telling him that he can take it defensively like you are saying he isn't doing enough, or he can take it as you needing him in order to be able to heal; and this is something he can do to really help you. For a long time my WH needed a reminder that being defensive was a choice he was making.

ladies_first posted 5/28/2013 14:42 PM

We are on different timetables as far as processing and healing goes.
You are wise to understand this.

What is it that you need from him, now? What's missing?

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