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How do you know you can't do R?

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FeelingSoMuch posted 6/13/2013 17:17 PM

I'm told that at nearly 4 months it's still early for me to make decisions.

I don't disagree, but have many questions.

Among them, how do you know R isn't for you?

I had always thought of affairs, even ONS, as deal breakers. I love my wife, but am feeling that she doesn't feel for me the way I feel for her -- I mean, she had a LTA.

I enjoy her company, am attracted to her looks, appreciate her intellect and so on. Take away the A and i have no complaints. I see her other faults and flaws as just part of who she is and I accept them.

I'm having a hell of a time accepting that I have to live with this the rest of my life. We were thinking about having kids before the A and now she's bringing that up again.

I never thought that the mother of my children would be a cheater and now I'm considering accepting that.

I hate the thought of losing my WW, but I'm not scared of going it alone. I'm pretty sure I'd find someone else quickly, but I'm just so used to everything my WW does that it would probably feel weird at first.

Intellectually, I'm fighting myself to stay in R. It doesn't make sense to stay with a cheater.

My heart has mixed feelings.

Other than waiting for clarity, is there an early sign that R isn't for you?

MediumRare posted 6/13/2013 18:00 PM

It doesn't make sense to stay with a cheater.

Absolutely correct... it makes NO sense to stay with a cheater, ever.. PERIOD.

So the question is- when is your WW ready to do the hard work of not being a cheater any more? And that means a LOT more than just ending the affair.. it also means fixing all the damages and issues that allowed them to cheat in the first place.

People CAN change, but they must want it for themselves and be willing to do the hard work for it.

Until then, it makes no sense FSM. Do you think she's ready to make that journey?

[This message edited by MediumRare at 6:01 PM, June 13th (Thursday)]

Althea posted 6/13/2013 18:04 PM

Those early months suck. They just suck, and there is no way around it. However, if your WS is truly remorseful (and I don't think yours is), the idea of R starts to seem more palatable. It may be that the A is a deal breaker for you. I think you will know that to be the case if she starts doing everything she can to save the marriage and you just can't move on.

However, your WS has broken NC twice and still works with OM. If she were serious about reconciling with you she would quit her dream job and she wouldn't think twice about it. Honestly, I would be psyched about reconciling with her either

stillhere09 posted 6/13/2013 19:03 PM

It's almost impossible to R with a spouse who is still working at the same place as the AP. I know; I've been through it.

It could be that the fact that she is putting her job above you and the M has more to do with your feelings than you realize. Co-workers spend more time together than spouses do, and they only see each other at their best. It's bound to get to any BS.

Other than waiting for clarity, is there an early sign that R isn't for you?

As long as she is still working with him, he is not in her past. He is in her present. I think that is a sign. Anything a WS does that shows lack of remorse is a sign, IMO.

FeelingSoMuch posted 6/13/2013 20:16 PM

Thank you for the responses. They validate what I'm thinking and feeling.

I guess the next question I have to ask myself is, will my WW get to remorse?

After a number of good days I'm having a terrible day today. It took me a lot of effort to suggest we give each other two appreciations. We did that. It felt good. I started feeling safe.

Because I felt safe after the appreciations I said that I was trying not to spoil the good momentum we had going, but that I felt it important that she know I'm having a bad day and feeling a lot of pain.

She said, "I'm sorry."

I asked her what she was sorry for.

She said, "I'm sorry that you're in pain."

I said that what I need to hear from her is that she's sorry for discarding the special times in our adult lives, like our wedding, in favour of her A.

She responded that she's sorry I feel that way.

I told her that until I hear from her that she's sorry for the damage she caused and not for how I'm feeling, that I won't believe she's remorseful.

She got up, walked away, said she doesn't think I'm ready to have "this conversation" and went to the bedroom. She works very early in the morning and goes to bed before me.

I didn't chase her. I don't do that anymore. I did it the first two months after d-day and I regret it.

She came out after about five minutes and offered a hug. I said I needed it. She asked me why I wasn't hugging her tighter and I said it's because I'm angry with her.

She acknowledged that without words and said thanks for the appreciations earlier in the day.

I walked her to the bedroom, wished her a goodnight and kissed her head before I walked out.

I don't know what to make of the whole exchange. Is she trying? Am I asking for something she's not ready to give me? Am I asking for too much? Is she just not accepting personal responsibility?

Ugh! It's so hard to know what to do when I'm too emotionally involved to see with clarity.

dbellanon posted 6/13/2013 21:53 PM

Tough call. As others have suggested, a lot of it is going to be her attitude towards what she did and what she does going forward. She has to be willing to sacrifice a lot in order to gain back your trust.

Be thankful (weird choice of words, I know) that this happened before you had kids. The mother of my child IS a cheater, and an unrepentant one at that. There's nothing hypothetical about it. It's awful. I do think that having children in the equation changes things. I don't think that people who split up suffer any less if they don't have children, but at least they aren't tethered to their WS for the rest of their lives.

Having said all that, I didn't have the luxury of entering R because my WW's affair was an exit affair, a sick parting gift on her way out of the marriage. I would have given anything for a chance to even try to recover with her, knowing full well the hard torturous road ahead, and the the fact that success wouldn't even be guaranteed. And while it's true that thinking about my daughter was one of the primary things that kept me fighting for that chance as long as I did, I think I still would have done it anyway.

I'm not as naive as I once was, but I'm still an idealist. I still believe that the vows that you say on your wedding day mean something and that divorce is a desperate last resort for when there are simply no options left. It's a matter of honor, on the one hand, but it's more than that too. If you get through this, and if you both manage to take the steps necessary to make your marriage stronger, you'll be able to look at your marriage and say, "See what we got through!" Your marriage could rise out of this to new heights, or it might manage to hobble along, alive, but forever damaged.

Marriage is a risk. Even if you're 100% committed, there's this other person over whom you have no control. Choosing to stay in a marriage after an affair is an even greater risk. Think of it as doubling down. The payoff could be huge, but so is the downside. If the marriage fails in the end, you'll have wasted that much more of our life on a doomed cause, or if you never fully recover, you'll ask yourself if it was worth it. But there's no way to know ahead of time, so I say, if her attitude and actions are right, then go for it.

FeelingSoMuch posted 6/13/2013 22:15 PM


Thank you for responding. I'm an idealist, too. I'm having a tough time with this because of my feelings of being rejected, jealousy, fear of wasting time, fear of more pain, and so on...

My WW sounds so sincere, committed, yet guarded in our attempt at R.

But she sounded sincere before the A, too.

It's a gamble and because we were telling each other we were ready to have kids just before the A, it scares me to think that this could happen when children are in the picture.

This is so very hard.

[This message edited by FeelingSoMuch at 10:18 PM, June 13th (Thursday)]

FeelingSoMuch posted 6/14/2013 16:28 PM

Update: I'm having a good day and feeling pretty sure I can do R.

Disclaimer: I have today off work, I'm sitting on our patio furniture, drinking Cuba Libres and smoking a cigar.

No anger. I feel better than the OM will ever feel because he's a loser, love toward my wife and just had a 15-minute conversation with the elderly neighbour where I praised my WW over and over. (we also talked about our cat)

I guess I'm able to enjoy this gorgeous sunny afternoon because I feel safe that my WW won't go back to OM.

The jealousy remains, but he's an ugly effer. I wake up feeling better every day, he wakes up ugly every day.

Oh yes, and I'm waiting for my wife to finish work so I can pick her up. I'm making an awesome lasagna (first time) for dinner in the courtyard. (we live on the ground floor of a condo, which gives us private space in the courtyard. It's downtown living with a little bit of a suburban feel)

Here's to my/our first really good day in R! (what prompted it? I don't know) Cheers.

sisoon posted 6/14/2013 17:18 PM

Remember that you have to live with being cheated on for the rest of your life whether you R or D. Also remember it's about your W, not about you.

Right now you go back and forth between R and not-R. My experience on SI says strongly that people who choose D know that either they don't want R or R is impossible for them.

There's nothing wrong with healing and letting your decision form slowly. You've got a lot to figure out. It's OK that you need more time.

[This message edited by sisoon at 5:18 PM, June 14th (Friday)]

Done_withThePain posted 6/15/2013 01:58 AM

I believe she needs more therapy hel because to me I think you are on the money and she should be saying she feels sorry for causing you this pain and sorry for the poor choices that led u guys to this cross road- more remorse is needed from her thus far

nomistakeaboutit posted 6/15/2013 07:02 AM

I believe she needs more therapy hel because to me I think you are on the money and she should be saying she feels sorry for causing you this pain and sorry for the poor choices that led u guys to this cross road- more remorse is needed from her thus far

^^^For starters, this. spades.

::::::::Warning. Straight talk below.

It's very obvious to me that you're over thinking your situation. You're doing that because you don't want to lose her. Well, as we know, you kind of already did.

I feel you trying so hard. I see her doing nothing. Sure, after a few rum and cokes you can convince yourself that things are better, but I'm sorry to have to say, they really aren't.

She should be leaning toward you. Instead, you are leaning toward her.
Lasagna, affirmations, reaching out, thinking,'s all you. She cheated. You're making extra effort. That's backwards. Name one thing she's done for you, something that came from her heart. Nothing. I know.

You tell her what you need. She doesn't provide it. Your simply asked her to reassure you that she understands how much pain SHE caused and how much she hurt you. She responds with what? She WALKs AWAY???? WTF......I mean, crazy making, screaming out loud....WTF?!!!! That is not good. Walking away doesn't cut it. Been there. Experienced that. NOT...repeat...NOT...a good sign. I the situation you described, here's the Translation. "Sorry. Must suck to be you. Get over it. (Yawwwwwwn). Oh. Got a busy day tomorrow. I'm going to bed." ...and then, asleep in five minutes and she sleeps like a baby all night.

You do understand that you can't save your marriage. She can. You cannot. She betrayed you. You didn't betray her.

My advice. Cut your losses. Leave her cold heart in the dust. Find someone with a warm heart, like yours.

Admit that infidelity may not have been the deal breaker you always thought, but be honest with yourself and acknowledge that infidelity followed by no remorse is.

If you don't accept that advice, then here is another try.

Maybe you're thinking that she has "some" remorse and therefore there is hope.

OK. Let her show you. At a minimum, all of this needs to happen....and happen with a smile.

A. Either she or the OM needs to quit their job. Here's how you can decide who gets to quit. Ask the president of the company to decide. Complete NC after that.

B. See how affectionate she is, physically and emotionally toward you. See what she gives.

C. Insist that she go IC. She and you need to know why she had her A and why it won't happen again at her new job.

D. Postpone any consideration of kids for a year. You're not ready for a long shot.

If she does all of the above, great. But, she's not remorseful, so none of it will happen.

Finally, don't be afraid. You will be ok. You will look back and be glad. Put the drinks and cigar down. Drink two cups of coffee. And, say goodbye to the love you THOUGHT you had, but did not. Sorry, but you've been over thinking all of this. It's time to be real. It's time to be true to yourself. She could have had you, but instead she betrayed you, which left you wounded on the ground.

Stand back up. Hug her one last time, for what you mistakenly thought you two were and would always be, then walk away.

[This message edited by nomistakeaboutit at 8:17 AM, June 15th (Saturday)]

twodoves posted 6/15/2013 09:51 AM

Don't bring a baby into the picture until you guys are fully in R mode.

Dealing with infidelity when kids are involved is truly gut wrenching. I feel like i failed my children because i couldn't protect them from my husband's shitty mistakes.

FeelingSoMuch posted 6/16/2013 11:36 AM

nomistakeaboutit, thank you for the straight talk.

The only thing I'm sure about is that we are NOT going to bring a baby into this world until this is resolved. If I'm having a tough time going through this, I can't even imagine the hell that people with children go through.

Yes, I had a good afternoon and tried to convince myself that I can do R.

My WW says she's reluctant to open up because I'm not accepting what she's doing for me.

My intention, with giving her a wonderful, pleasant weekend was to give her that room to show her remorse.

As hard as it is for me to admit it, she did not. She didn't fight with me, she said she was thankful for everything I did, but did not bring up the A.

I really wanted her to. And to say that she was sorry for "bringing crazy into our lives."

Grrrrr. I'm giving it time for two reasons. 1. I'm told that people who have EAs in addition to PAs take longer to show remorse. 2. I spent 12 years thinking we'd be together for life. It's been hard to detach and let go.

Posting here helps because at times I'm able to think straight. At other times I feel either too pessimistic or optimistic. People on SI help bring me back to reality, whether it's a positive or negative reality.

sisoon posted 6/16/2013 12:55 PM

Aw, Man.... You didn't cause her A. You can't cause her remorse. She has to find it herself.

If you keep trying to make things easy for her, she'll continue to take the easy way out.

I assume you want her to be a great partner. If that's so, she has to pull her own weight. Let her do the arranging a lot of the time, especially WRT recovering from HER betrayal.

It's almost as if you're treating her better because she cheated. If you keep giving while she's unremorseful, why ever would she change?

180, FSM, 180. You'll have to risk your M to save it.

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