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Lifechange posted 7/2/2013 14:28 PM

In a book (Extraordinary Women, author Julie Clinton)I recently began reading, the author made a statement.

She said, "Extraordinary women decide that a husband's death, disability, or infidelity will not cause them to give up. They decide to bravely face their circumstances."

I had a hard time defining how I had "bravely faced my circumstances," if indeed I had done so at all after finding out about my FWH's LTA.

Maybe if someone else has an answer to this, it may be encouraging, or at least enlightening.

Thanks in advance for anyone who cares to share their input.

heartache101 posted 7/2/2013 14:40 PM

Hmm well I don't know about the bravely part.

But I think once we the BS truly believe in our hearts that this affair had nothing to do with us the BS well it kinda puts all the crap squarely onto the WS. JMO.. Not slamming the WS. Look it is easier to leave a relationship then to stay and fight.. That was my take on it.
I tightened the reigns and laid down the law. You do as I say or bye bye. Those rules were not in place pre affair (s).
I guess I am now the Sheriff!
It takes two very broken people to commit infidelity.

Jrazz posted 7/2/2013 14:49 PM

I'm hoping that there are many ways to interpret her statement, because the initial impression I'm left with seems a bit judgmental.

For the sake of positivity, I'm going to take this like "bravely face their circumstances" means just putting one foot in front of the other, even if the steps are small.

If you think about it, there's a lot of really destructive ways to handle death, disability, or infidelity. You can hurt yourself, hurt someone else, go beserk as it were. I think that any of these things can be so painful that it is indeed extraordinary that we (women AND men) persevere to try and get back to "normal" or "happy", and in the meantime find the strength to do things like drink water and sleep.

You came here for help. That's brave. You could have just given up. Or robbed a bank.

Don't sell yourself short - just living day to day is brave in the face of such pain.

kiki1 posted 7/2/2013 14:50 PM

I agree with heartache, it would be much easier to cut and run. we certainly arent doing that. its hard work and takes an awesome spirit to forgive the unforgivable. Though, i wouldnt call myself brave either, but well,,,,,we are arent we??

heartache101 posted 7/2/2013 15:05 PM

Lifechange his affair had NOTHING to do with you. Nothing.. Please believe that. I know it is hard but once you get there it will help.

Big hugs...

Jrazz posted 7/2/2013 15:08 PM

it would be much easier to cut and run

Posting as a Member:

I disagree. I think that the whole leaving vs. staying comparison doesn't even make sense, especially given that each relationship has it's own myriad of complications.

I think that it's equally brave to work on your situation as to walk away from it. It depends entirely on the circumstances.

SadFlower posted 7/2/2013 15:21 PM

Extraordinary women may "bravely face the circumstances" not only by staying, but also by leaving. It takes a lot of inner strength to do either. Whichever one is right for you depends on the individual situation. I do not think that leaving is a sign of weakness or lack of extraordinary character.

For the record, I have chosen to stay, but it is not hard to imagine circumstances under which the healthiest response would be to leave--many of our SI sisters have made that choice, and for good reason. Staying or leaving, neither one is easy. Both take a lot of backbone.

Jennifer99 posted 7/2/2013 16:55 PM

I love preachy shit like this...not. *I* will take that quote to mean that I am bravely focusing on loving myself, handling the things I can handle, letting the rest go, and still being a good mother to my son.

I will not cringe from the truth. I will not cringe from what others think. I will not cringe from WH being dissatisfied with the way I am handling anything.

I've got a big old, fuck y'all going on right now.

I say that I am bravely standing on my own two feet, not fearing the future for myself, just a bit anxious about the ramifications for my son but also believing that that too I can handle.

But DDay +7 days - my bravely handling anything was not killing someone. DDay +30 days - my bravely handling anything was hey, I still get up and go to work everyday woooo! big accomplishment. The bravely handling claim I make will change every day, every strength I reacquire, acquire, or lose.

Ask me again tomorrow. Maybe I will have bravely trussed up WH and driven his ass to the psych unit where he belongs.

sisoon posted 7/2/2013 17:43 PM

I'm not sure what your question is, but...

The quote sounds like chauvinist idiocy to me, although in a kinder moment I might just say it's a massive over-generalization.

We - men and women and children, too - have no choice but to face our circumstances. Some of us do it more effectively than others, but we all do it.

Who knows what combination of resources a particular person uses to recover from trauma? Bravery may get some people through, but grief, anger, fear, money, determination, support from other people, etc., etc., etc. may be the critical factors for other individuals.

I hope the rest of the book is better thought out and/or better written.

(Note: I think I'm pretty sensitive to and contemptuous of male chauvinist crap, too. Seeing genders as essentially equal was a requirement for getting ... um ... close to my W. And she was right, too. )

[This message edited by sisoon at 5:49 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday)]

SorrowBhindSmile posted 7/2/2013 21:57 PM

hmmmmm, i kinda like this, i think. "bravely face their circumstances"

you caused me to really think on this. My WH tells me all the time how amazed he is at my strength. I laugh at him and say "what strength, i dont feel very strong right now" In fact, lately, i have really been riding the high speed train to self pity ville. But your post really made me stop and think. Am i brave? how am i brave?

i think that that every single woman (all BS's, in fact) bravely faces their circumstances every single day. Though we may not feel it, we are brave.

Allowing your WS to hold you when you cry....thats brave.

going to MC/IC with your WS...thats brave.

Buying that first book on infidelity and reading it...thats brave

Not rug sweeping, facing things head on and working thru it...thats brave

Posting on this site, opening up and sharing whats in your soul...thats brave

on DDay and in the couple days following, simply getting out of bed....thats brave

finding the courage and commitment to try and reconcile (even if R didnt work for you)....thats brave

so many things make a BS brave. We shouldn't under estimate ourselves. We have our good days, we have our shit days.....but every single day that we get up and face another day...we are brave.

m334455 posted 7/2/2013 22:26 PM

I had a hard time defining how I had "bravely faced my circumstances," if indeed I had done so at all after finding out about my FWH's LTA.

You start small and build from there. What else is there to do?

It's kind of a dumb thought on the author's part anyway. How many people really "give up"? People are wired to be resilient.

"Surviving" an LTA doesn't make me extraordinary - it just means the birdshit happened to hit my windshield that particular time.

ItsaClimb posted 7/3/2013 01:30 AM

They decide to bravely face their circumstances."

I like the quote. I think it means that we don't rug-sweep. I think when something is as painful as death/disability/infidelity it is very easy to not acknowledge how painful our feelings are, it's easier to "put a band-aid over it" and try to limp on without dealing with all those hurt feelings.

I think it takes a brave (extraordinary!) woman to facethe pain, to look it squarely in the eye, to examine it, acknowledge it, process it (and all that goes with it) and deal with it (whether by leaving or staying).

IMO the bravery is not in the staying or going, it is in facing what we are dealing with and not rug-sweeping it.

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