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How do I know he's for real?

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hiroshima2013 posted 7/11/2013 01:59 AM

One beautiful sunny morning in spring 1945, the air raid siren rang out across the Japanese city of Hiroshima. But there was only one plane, perhaps a stray, so the all clear was raised.

One plane. One bomb. That was all it took to wreak so much devastation.

Such was my marriage. Thus the handle. One evening my husband bought dinner and a bottle of wine, promising a nice evening curled up on the couch. After dinner he began to tell me there was someone else. He was confused. And then it all got very messy.

I immediately started putting it all together. He had been travelling to another city for work on and off for the past year. I began to see that the care he suddenly took in his appearance and health had nothing to do with me. That he structured his career around the affair. That he had been siphoning off his love for me to another relationship.

He began to minimise immediately, saying it was a silly crush, a flight of fancy, that they were "just friends" and that he needed it to stop and he needed my help to stop it.

He tried to hold me in bed while I sobbed. My gut told me this stuff about it being a crush that needed intervention was not true. I asked him over and over, "Why did you tell me? Why?" and quickly surmised he told me because he was too gutless to end the marriage himself. He hoped I would break it for him.

I did not sleep all night. I sat in the lounge crying for hours, worrying that I had to go to work in the morning. Sensing that he wanted me to go, I began to pack an overnight bag. I almost made it out while he was still sleeping, when he stopped me at the door. I said I was packing my bag in case I didn't want to come home that night. He told me this wasn't what I wanted. I agreed and said but it's what he wanted. He didn't exactly say this was untrue.

I had nowhere to go. I was stunned. I waited all morning to see if he would tell me he wanted me. He didn't. I live in a very expensive city and it is peak season so I had to shell out a lot of money to stay in a sad little motel.

I contacted him to tell him not to worry about me, and to check he was okay. Then he began to plead with me to come home.

I went home the next day. He told me the affair was all in his head, that the other person didn't even know about it so how could it be real? I immediately felt relieved. And stupid for over reacting. Then suspicious.

Over the next few weeks he would do anything to reconcile, as would I. He has long taken me for granted and been lazy in the relationship. He became more attentive and claimed this is how he now wants to live our lives together. That it feels good. He told me he hated this OW and sent NC and reluctantly cancelled work obligations that involved her. I felt a lot of it was my fault and took on a lot of responsibility for mending the relationship. I tried to be so fair and reasonable. I read all the books, tried so hard to be sympathetic and comforting to him.

But the suspicions gnawed at me. Constantly.

One day when he was out of the house, I went through his emails, I snooped as I had not been shown the NC email and wanted to see it. I found that he had told his AP that he was going to "salvage his relationship". This was a red flag. I began to realise I had been fooled.

He explained that he had told her that there were serious problems in our marriage. She had asked him if he had spoken to me about it. He had not. She encouraged him to talk to me about it. This hurt me, but he swore that they were not that close as friends and besides this had only discussed professional matters.

A day or so later I asked to look at his emails to her. He went all quiet and started crying a little before showing them to me. I read them. They were love letters. It was devastating.

This was the second thing he kept from me, I began to ask what else there was. I became relentless, what else? I knew there was something. I began to snoop relentlessly. I found an email to his parents where he was telling them about his wonderful new friend.

He admitted that he fantasized about moving in with her. And though, there was no sex, this was entirely emotional, he put himself in situations alone with her hoping sex would happen. He presented it that he was being faithful because there was no sex. Meanwhile a full blown emotional affair was raging.

It hurt. I told him the thing that hurt the most was that he wanted to leave me. He told me that was never his intention. He just wanted an affair, he was on the brink of turning the affair sexual but it all got too real and that was why he ended it by asking for intervention.

But still I felt he was holding back. There were email deletions, he went away on business and took his computer with him (after he had given me all passwords as an act of trust) I was getting obsessive and snooping on work time, which is unlike me. The more I asked the more evasive he got, the more evasive he got, the more obsessive I became.

Finally one month after the initial D-Day he disclosed that the purpose of the original D-Day had been to break with me to be with her. That she had made it clear she wanted him to move in and that she had given him an ultimatum, and he didn't want to disappoint her. He had come to see me as a horrible person he resented. He inflated my faults and assumed mean-spirited motivations behind every one of my actions. He thought I was boring, small minded and a miserable person. He thought he could tell me about her and I would end it. Then he could move in with her.

This really hurts to know he thought this about me. When these revelations came out he threw several self hating tantrums that really scared me. At one stage I called the suicide line for him because I was not in a state to deal with him myself but wanted to make sure he was okay. I resented that this final disclosure was about him and how hurt he was at the prospect of me leaving. He's been so desperate since D-Day, that it scares me.

His version of events matched my initial instincts exactly. He had started that conversation in order to end the marriage. But he says as soon as he started saying it he regretted it and began trying to put the genie back in the bottle. He began minimising and gas lighting. He deleted the most incriminating emails and texts, he told me anything I wanted to hear in order to prevent me from leaving. He told me that as soon as he began to tell me, and saw my reaction the fantasy immediately began to crumble away. He talked about roller coasters and fogs. He says he immediately began to see I wasn't as bad a person as he thought and that perhaps the AP wasn't such a nice person after all. When I left the morning after D-Day he said he felt paralysed in a bad script of some stupid soap opera. He'd set the wheels in motion now and he had to go through with it. His AP tried to contact him, to see how the break up had gone. But he says he then got my email checking to see if he was okay. He says this gave him hope that his marriage wasn't wrecked forever, and it made him feel that I was the one who really cared about his welfare. After a couple of missed calls the AP didn't get around to getting in contact again until the next day. He says this is when he decided he hated her and what she did to our marriage, and began to cast her as a villain.

He has been ardently "in love with me" ever since.

His passion scares me. My instincts picked up every turn of his emotions, swinging away from her to me. It scares me how quickly he changed his opinion of me, I am now some paragon of the perfect wife that he wants to spend the rest of his life with.

It shifted so quickly that I fear he may swing back the other way again. The passion seems feverish and unreal. He wants to reconcile, but I don't know what to believe.

Being told "I found someone else, I desperately want you" in the same breath has been a complete mind****. Is this normal? Is he limerance with me now? Will this wear off and he will take me for granted again? What do I do if he does?

I feel I should be asking the WS all this because I just don't know what I feel. I know what I want in a relationship but I don't know if he can offer these. I feel like I'm being told what I want to hear. He seems truly remorseful, but what if it doesn't last?

I know we need to work on reconciliation. I have agreed not to make any decisions either way until 3 months after D-Day. Most of the time I want to work on it. But other times I feel, what if I'm with the wrong person? What if cheating is innate?


[This message edited by hiroshima2013 at 2:29 AM, July 11th (Thursday)]

truthnow posted 7/11/2013 08:44 AM

Hi, sorry for what you are going through. I have been lurking around here for a few months and read lots of helpful advice. Very often it is to take good care of yourself, eat well, drink plenty of water, get a little exercise etc - good advice for anyone. But I think you really need to focus on yourself and your own needs. It sounds like your WH is so emotionally demanding and volatile that you are just constantly caught up with his needs and that you aren't considering your own. Please don't move out of your home, when you have nowhere to go. You need to keep yourself safe. IMHO, if anyone moves out then it should be him! Also you need to be able to heal and make your decisions in your own time, not instantly respond to everything he wants.

My WH is also wanting to R. But after uncovering more lies since Dday, I am also wondering the same "How do I know he's for real?" issue. Each discovery of more lies is devastating. I have told him, that I need to step back from him emotionally. He is very understanding of this. I have done this for the last 3 weeks. I am appreciating the break from what seemed like constant trauma. I am enjoying my kids and focussing on other parts of my life. Not quite sure where we will go next though.

There is a really good thread on emotional detachment, which you may like to read. I dont feel qualified to be giving out advice, but I do feel like it is helping me to have some time and space.

confused615 posted 7/11/2013 09:14 AM

I think you don't have all the information you need to make any decision just yet.

He is lying. Cheaters lie. This was physical. He was breaking up with you,his wife,for this whore. They are adults who fancied themselves in luuurrrrvvvee...they had sex.

You need to be tested for STD's. So does he.

Does the OW have a husband? Have you checked her out yourself,to find out? Because you can't trust what your husband has told you...she very well might have a husband.

What is he doing to prove he wants to R?

Is he in IC to figure out his "why?"

Is he fully transparent? Do you have full access to all of his accounts,and cell,passwords included?

Is he answering all of your questions without blame,anger,and defensiveness?

He needs to send a REAL NC email to he writes..and you send together.

He works with OW? Then he needs to find another job.

Im so sorry for the reason you're here,but so glad you found us.


hiroshima2013 posted 7/11/2013 11:18 AM

Thanks for your kind words. He does seem to genuinely want to reconcile. He does not blame and has mostly stopped avoiding the subject.

What with this gradual disclosure I am going crazy with suspicion. Every time I think I get to the bottom of it, I find something else. Every time he says "no really this time, there's nothing more". I think he has told me everything now, but I've gotten so used to being suspicious I can't let it go. I don't know how to trust him anymore.

confused615 posted 7/11/2013 11:22 AM

It's called trickle truth(TT). It's torture. Every time you find more out,it sets your healing back to day 1. Tell him this..that you need him to tell you everything NOW.

You said he seems to want to R...what is he doing to show you this?

hiroshima2013 posted 7/11/2013 11:31 AM

To show me he wants to reconcile, he has accepted responsibility for the affair and admitted he has not been as invested a partner. He has changed his behaviour, saying that routine and spending time together is important. He has read Shirley Glass' book, sometimes we read it together. He has asked on many occasions if I would like MC, I've been a bit hesitant but he has said that he is willing to do this.

He has given me all the passwords to his phone, email and internet accounts. Unfortunately, he had a purge of past emails before he gave me these.

He has offered to write a proper NC.

I has wept openly on many occasions.

He has said he is willing to work on this and that he doesn't care how long it takes. He has been very understanding of my need to go through the pain.

he explained the reason he lied was because he was afraid of losing me. He's terrified.

It's just the trickle disclosure I'm having trouble with. I am going mental with the snooping and suspiciousness. don't know how to make it stop.

confused615 posted 7/11/2013 11:35 AM

It sounds like he's off to a good start.

Your suspicions will continue..and the "snooping" will to. It takes 3-5 years to heal from will be riding an emotional roller coaster. Give yourself time to process what has happened. You must "feel it to heal it." It takes time..I know..but it's true.

But with a remorseful,patient WH who is willing to do the hard work and the digging can reconcile and be happy again.

hiroshima2013 posted 7/11/2013 11:36 AM

Sorry to threadsit, someone asked about work. He met the OW through a conference but they don't work together. He has cancelled going to conferences he had committed to knowing she was going to be there.

1Faith posted 7/11/2013 14:56 PM

I just don't know what I feel. I know what I want in a relationship but I don't know if he can offer these. I feel like I'm being told what I want to hear. He seems truly remorseful, but what if it doesn't last?

...Most of the time I want to work on it. But other times I feel, what if I'm with the wrong person?

What you are feeling is completely normal. You world has been turned upside down and everything you've known to be true has been compromised.

It is still very new for you. You have been granted a ticket on the rollercoaster ride from hell. Your emotions will vacillate all over the place. You will feel everything and nothing with in the same 2 minutes.

You have been dealt a horrible trauma. Horrible. Your body and mind are in shock. So yes, it is normal to question everything including yourself and your feelings.

Just allow yourself to heal. Healing takes time. Time is an ugly word for those that have just found out because the pain is so real and raw you just want to fast track the healing. You want it to be over, you want to feel better, you want your life back.

Well, you old life is gone and you need to mourn the loss of the husband you thought you knew, the marriage you thought you had.

You can rebuild and have a different marriage but you will never be the same. It is important to know that.

You are smart for being cautious. Your WH is most likely feeling tremendous guilt and is scared to lose you. He is going in hyper drive to redeem himself.

Just be honest with him and tell him you need time. You can't process what has happened let alone all the super affection. Space and time and his behavior will help guide you toward R if that is where you want to be.

I hope you are in IC and so is your husband.

The newlywed phase of rekindled love will diminish at some point. Is he prepared for that? Are you?

You are scared and understandably so. Please look in the healing library and read, read, read.

You have to define your boundaries and stick to them. If he betrays you again in anyway are you prepared to leave?

Stay strong and post whenever you need to. You can do this. We are here.

Good luck. Keep moving.

anewday78 posted 7/11/2013 15:59 PM

First of all, I'm sorry you're going through this horrible pain. I'm not sure it's so safe to make the assumption that this was a physical affair even with the TT you're getting. Regardless, it still hurts and you should definitely have yourself tested for STDs.

I think you may be in a far better position than a lot of the other folks posting here. Your husband seems to be very remorseful and ashamed over what's happened. I think it would be best if you encouraged him to seek some independent counseling as well as some marriage counseling. If you truly love him, be strong and encourage him to start doing the hard work to turn things around. This may just make your marriage even stronger if the two of you can work together and try to overcome it as a loving, open-minded couple trying to reconnect.

hiroshima2013 posted 7/12/2013 08:04 AM

anewday78, how will I ever know if this wasn't physical? I really really want to believe him but everyone here is saying that's foolish.

confused615 posted 7/12/2013 08:16 AM

Correct..this may not have been physical...but when you have 2 adults who are caught up in the fantasy of an affair and lurrrvvvee...and they are in close proximity of each other,the chances of it NOT being physical are very,very slim. I could be jaded,sure. I've been on SI for a few years now...and have seen a few EA's that weren't PA's...but Ive seen many,many,many members come here saying their WS had an EA...only to be TT'd later and they realize it was a PA...and they have to start over in R,because of the lies and the bullshit.

I think the best thing for a newly betrayed BS is to make a polygraph a requirement of R. That way you have an idea right off the bat as to what you're dealing with.

If he is telling you the truth,he will jump at the chance to prove it to you...if he is lying,he will get angry and defensive and refuse...or tell you he isn't willing to risk his future on a machine...yet he expects you to risk your future on a man who has proven he can be very careless with your heart.

Insist on the poly...if he says yes..follow through...if you get a parking lot confession...follow through.

ETA: It is not foolish to want to believe your's's your natural instinct...he's your husband! We're not saying you're foolish....we're saying cheater lie and minimize...and unfortunately, your WH is a cheater. We want you to have your eyes open,because we are trying to help you through this...and in order to do that,you have to have the truth.

[This message edited by confused615 at 8:19 AM, July 12th (Friday)]

anewday78 posted 7/12/2013 09:09 AM

Unfortunately, you may never know for sure. It doesn't make what's happen hurt any less either way. If working on the marriage is your goal and if you love your husband and you sense that he is remorseful (from what you've written, I suspect he is totally freaking out over all of this), then I think you're already heading in the right direction. Emphatically express to him that you need the 100% truth, no matter how hurtful he thinks it may be. Tell him that if you get the whole truth along with a lot of remorse all in one dose, you'll be able to commit to working as a team to do the hard work required to move past this. However, if you get the truth in small doses over time (trickle truth) - and YOU WILL get the truth, it's inevitable (at least you can lead him to believe this) - you will be hurt all over again each time and will not be able to guarantee this is something the marriage can recover from.

I think it's all in your approach. Explaining to him that you can handle the truth and would PREFER it all in one dose along with a little intimidation (i.e. "I'm going to start investigating and I WILL get answers - it's inevitable") may prove to get more out of him. Then you can decide whether or not this is a deal breaker for you.

hiroshima2013 posted 7/12/2013 09:09 AM

The other thing I have thought of doing is threatening to ask the OW. I hadn't thought of the polygraph and to be honest, not sure how common these are in the UK?

hiroshima2013 posted 7/12/2013 09:30 AM

I have already told him I am ready for the whole truth. I think it was threatening to get the forensics team at my work place to go over his computer that made him worried enough to confess about leaving. He has also been stunned at how accurate every single instinct of mine has been from the beginning. I am trying the receptive, ready for any news approach.

He is very sexually timid and has insecurities about his performance, which makes his claims seem plausible. However, he stopped approaching me for sex in the past few months (thus his lack of concern re:STDs), and I know he would consider this the most shameful thing to confess of all. Even though I have assured him it's the leaving that hurts most of all.

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