So, on that cheery note, I am wondering what you all think worked well or didn't work well in trying to R. What would you have done differently? Can be big things or small everyday things that made a difference, one way or the other, to your R.
I would have demanded a timeline immediately, if I knew about timelines, didn't know until I joined SI 8 months after d-day.
The best things we did was to read "Not Just Friends", wish we knew about it sooner. Going to MC was good, but I wish we had a MC that had a better understanding of infidelity and how the BS is impacted.
eta: Going to Retrouvaille was another wonderful thing we did!
[This message edited by SisterMilkshake at 1:02 PM, June 5th (Wednesday)]
"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak." ~ Homer Simpson
As SisterMilkshake said going to MC and IC are great. As much as you can, focus on taking care of yourself and do not worry about your spouse. They will either get with the program or not.
"Affairs are not mistakes, they are a series of deliberate choices." - CrappyLife
"Regret is when you realize you broke your own heart.
Remorse is when you realize you broke someone else's." - Bla
Fool me once, shame on you.
Fool me twice, pack your shit and get out.
Fool me twice, now what?!?!
I am wondering what you all think worked well or didn't work well in trying to R.
I realized that it was not just R or D, there was a third option I call "not divorcing". In retrospect, FWW and I spent 2+ years after dday "not divorcing". She was getting to the point where she owned her crap and then was working on fixing it. I was working on me, getting to acceptance and healing. We spent some time seeing MC, but mostly her seeing IC.
...if he ever acts out sexually again, and if he stops treatment
I am 1000% done with the marriage.
Rather than working on the M with the idea that if it happens again you are out, give him some time to prove he can control his porn addiction and acting out with stripper. Give yourself 6 - 9 months to work on you and watch him.
In my instance FWW had to do the work on her before she was able to participate fully in the M. She had to get her miss-perceptions realigned, she had to learn new and healthier coping mechanisms than the ones she had used since childhood that in part led to her As.
While you are working on your healing, your WH can work on his acting out and addiction. Then, when he and you are in a healthier space you can work on the M together.
From an earlier post of yours...
...in treatment for addictive behavior related to the infidelity and per numerous therapists we can't even begin working on the marriage for a number of months until he is well into recovery.
[This message edited by atsenaotie at 2:12 PM, June 5th (Wednesday)]
It wasn't until he flew to her city after 3 months of separation - and I could tell by the change in his voice/attitude that he finally slept with her - that I found this site and went NC on him. THAT was the 2nd best thing I did. (First was the separation.) I got stronger and started to heal.
But during those first 3 months, I tried to hang on to him as much as possible. Which made me look like a helpless, whiny, basketcase - at least in my own eyes. Based on emails I found of his during that time period, he thought I was "crazy". Hot one minute. Cold the next. Yelling. Then hugging him.
Looking back, I would have changed my own behavior so that I wasn't acting like a lunatic. I like the strong version of me better.
I would looked at emails/phone records sooner then I did.
Would have INSISTED on seeing a therapist (they were all on holiday apparently 3 weeks before Christmas!)
We read After the Affair within the first 2-3 weeks.
Contrary to what others said, I allowed him to stay put but once the boys went to bed he either slept at his dad's or in the basement.
Let him know that IC was a MUST or he had to leave.
We talked and talked and talked. Every day. And we still are. Better every month.
Best wishes, cds22
[This message edited by LA44 at 2:36 PM, June 5th (Wednesday)]
The thing that still gets me from time to time is that the pain is much greater than I ever imagined. It just keeps coming and coming, and it's taken me a long time to accept that. I spent too much time and energy trying to suppress or ignore the pain, in the belief that the A couldn't possibly cause as much pain as I felt (and continue to feel, to some extent).
So A-#-1 thing not to do is to doubt or ignore the pain you feel.
I did 2 things that helped immensely.
First, I kept saying again and again that she had to come clean fully and as quickly as possible. I didn't sugar-coat anything - I said a revelation now might cause me to end our M, but revelations that come months down the line could definitely end our M.
I believe my emphasis on 'truth now' scared my W into answering honestly. As the months flowed on, I occasionally felt I was getting a new revelation, but my W could tell me when and what she said, and she was right - every 'new revelation' was just an aspect of something that I already was aware of but was thinking of in a new way.
The 2nd good thing I did was withhold commitment to R for 90 days, though longer would probably have been better. I used that time to think about being without her after 40-odd years. I didn't explicitly commit to R until after I knew in my guts I could make it on my own.
I also used the time to observe my W. She was committed to R from D-Day on, and her behavior showed it.
You may think the above makes me a strong, independent man. WRT my W, however, I'm a lot less independent than I sound - which means that setting those boundaries at the beginning, when my W was most vulnerable and scared of being kicked out, really helped our R.
[This message edited by sisoon at 2:52 PM, June 5th (Wednesday)]
D Day: July 27, 2012
Day of first suspicion: 6/7/11
DD#2: November 2, 2012
In reading the others responses I see so many that wish they would have thrown out their WS.
I didn't throw out my FWS. In fact, I said to him, "If you leave, don't think that you can just come back when you want to. That front door is not a revolving door!"
For the record..my FWH would always want to "leave me" when I was expressing anger about the A. He wanted to run from the pain of the whole mess.
My FWS doesn't like to face conflict. He used to drink but since he has been sober for 9 yrs, he doesn't have alcohol to ease his pains.
Since my dday, just over a year ago, I have said to my FWH in anger, "I wish you would have left! I wish the OW would have taken you!"
He says he considers that he dodged a bullet that he didn't go off with her..that it would have been the worst mistake of his life..etc..He says he is grateful that I handled him the way I did.
This is something that I have struggled with. I know at the time, I was worried that if he left our home, he may do something stupid, like contact OW.
I know I felt that I needed to protect him from himself. He was in such a self-destructive frame of mind.
So I guess, in response to your question..The sensible side of me thinks I did the right thing and kept him "safe" at home.
The emotional side of me wishes he could have experienced the horrible full consequence of his choice to have an A.
Good luck to us all.
Let us know how it goes. We are cheering for you!
I don't want to think about it. Guess it's a Freudian slip. So be it.
But with R, realizing and accepting he wouldn't tell me everything until he was ready to do so. He was waiting for R as I was waiting for full disclosure.
[This message edited by libertyrocks at 4:55 PM, June 5th (Wednesday)]
I guess I should be clearer I am not 100% decided to R but I am thinking seriously about it. And if I do it, I want to do it right. :) I don't know that I can fully "commit" to any R because my buy-in is very contingent on his continued fervent efforts at recovery, remorse, and also eventually making amends.
Atsenoie, we have rec'd conflicting advice from the same therapists. In my H's first two months of treatment, they said not to pursue MC. Since then, H has launched himself into counseling and 12-step in a huge, daily way and been porn/strip bar sober since then. The other thing that happened was that things started to go nuclear in our household. The focus was 100% on the H, his recovery, it was like the 24 hour, 7 day a week SA Recovery Show in my house and it got hard for me to take. His IC and my IC both started rec'ing we start to see the MC. Their view was that the focus was still primarily on H's recovery but we would benefit from a space and some professional help to talk about how to cope at this early stage and to begin in a modest way the process of R. I believe H's IC also thought he seemed pretty stable. So I dunno what to make of it but our thinking is to go once per month at first mostly to keep our M on life support and then gradually start to work on some issues.
As for kicking him out for more sexual acting out, that is very firm with me. The health risk to me is way too high. I have two very small children, one still a toddler. I cannot take on any further risk of cancer or hiv and possibly dying on my kids. No way.