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True Remorse?

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myperfectlife posted 7/14/2013 02:59 AM

My WS seems different after the most recent events of this week, but it feels too soon to trust him.
What are signs that people have seen as true remorse and not just want the BS wants to hear?
Any insight on this would be appreciated.

standinghere posted 7/14/2013 03:38 AM

Initially, after exposure or confession, a lot of waywards say what they think needs to be said to salvage a relationship they want.

They are sorry. Sorry they got caught, sorry they did it, sorry about the mess.

They wish they hadn't done what they did.

They recognize the consequences, at least in part.

They cry, they talk, they act like they understand what they did, and why they did it.

But, speaking from my own experience and what I've read from a lot of others, they don't really understand what they did to their partner, how awful and dire the pain is that the partner feels. They also don't really understand why they did it, they just think they do.

The true remorse starts to kick in when they gain that understanding, and they realize why they did what they did, and how horrible it is to do to someone, as well as how helpless the other person is to do anything about it at the time it is happening. To compare to something, it's like slapping an infant. The infant can't do anything about it, just feel the pain. At least at the time, the BS can't do anything about it but feel the pain, they can't control their WS.

When my wife "got it", it was 5 months into MC, she was lying, obfuscating, trying to control counseling by doing this, and desperately wanting to avoid exposure of what she actually had done. Through it all she insisted that she had come clean, that she had told everything, that "you just don't believe me" and that "I've told the truth, you just can't handle it".

Then, one day, after counseling, we were walking to the car, she was literally shaking (it had been a rather mild counseling session so this was an odd thing). When we got in the car, she sat in her seat, I asked "what's wrong".

Her reply was interesting, but a bit puzzling.

"I just realized that I treated you like someone who had rejected me."

Around 1 month later, after agonizing on what was happening, she dropped to her knees in front of me in our back yard, without any preamble, and began crying and confessing to what she had actually done...which was not what we had talked about in counseling.

Over a year later, after the hell that I went through because of this, and looking back upon this time I realized that this was when true remorse developed.

She treated me like someone who had rejected her, but I hadn't rejected her, and she realized what it had put me through.

myperfectlife posted 7/14/2013 04:26 AM

Thanks standinghere...
that is a great response.
I will think about all those things carefully.
My WH has shown a lot of remorse, horror and disgust at what he has done, but until we decided to go ahead and D I don't think the reality hit him.
He seems to have come out of himself a little (or back to himself?). I am just watching and waiting right now.
Because we all know the roller coaster sometimes slows down when its climbing a big hill.

standinghere posted 7/15/2013 04:17 AM

Yeah, the rollercoaster slows, then speeds up, and you can just hold on as best you can.

A lot of it is just waiting, waiting for the WS to get a grip and the gumption to talk and think for themselves.

It isn't smooth, and it can't be. The WS would have to perfectly understand their issues, and if they did they wouldn't do this stuff to us.

My wife and I went to MC 9 years before she confessed, because of the way I talked, the way I made her feel, the way we were not getting along, etc, etc. It seemed to help us communicate better. I thought we were doing better. It thought I was doing better. Problem was, in that year, my wife had lied to not only me, but to the counselor in IC and our MC, and nobody knew the truth about her life.

It was like wrestling with the Invisible Man, nobody knew my wife had been sexually abused, and she was never going to tell anyone.

After all, she was "handling it".


That hidden secret, kept for all those years, was killing our intimacy, our friendship, and our family. But, she didn't understand that. It wasn't till she started talking that she was able to gain understanding that her reactions to me, her behaviors in the relationship, and her treatment of our children, was driven by her being sexually abused.

tushnurse posted 7/15/2013 07:36 AM

MPL, My spouse got it finally when I went to throw his A** out the door.
He kept breaking NC,even seeing her a few times. It was awful. I knew he wanted to R. I knew he was sorry for what he had done, but yet he didn't quite get how horribly he was disrespecting me, our marriage, and himself by keeping up with the dishonesty.

The difference for me was palpable. He truly changed. He was the man that I married again. He no long got angry, or agitated when I checked up on him, he no longer got upset when or antsy when I would tell him I needed reassurance. He would be forthright and tell me when the OW would attempt to contact him.
He was focused on us, and healing himself as well. He figured out what was so broken within himself. This was huge. Not what was broken, but understanding what was broken, and fixing it.
He commited himself to me, our marriage, and our family again. He told me his goal in life is to make sure that I am happy, and to hear me laugh every day.
Ultimately it took about 2 months from Dday for the idiot to reallyl get it. It was still a hard road to R but it was really possible once that occured.

I hope that you as well were able to awaken your spouse, clear the fog, and now he can work to heal himself and your marriage.

(((and strength to you both))))

myperfectlife posted 7/15/2013 10:53 AM

I definitely see some of those signs this week. He went NC with her Friday (not long, I know) but since then he has seemed more calm, relaxed, not nervous or defensive. He says he knows its my choice now but that he's going to do everything in his power to keep our family together.
He had no issues with deleting her number,installing gps on his phone and explaining every place he's been and thing he's done since then.
For the first time he told me that even if he and I end up divorced he will never end up with her-not even for a booty call, because he knows it was all false.
On my side, I have ridden the roller coaster so long I am nervous and shaky. I guess I just need time.
Thank you for your responses, they are really helping me process things.

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