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why can't I feel better?

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reallysad2012 posted 7/15/2013 21:14 PM

11 months out from dday

fWH has been 100% remorseful since dday and doing the best he can to help me heal from this
he apologizes all the time
he notices my facial expressions and can tell if I have triggered on something, then asks if I am okay or if I want to talk
recently he apologized for the fact that the last 11 months of my life have been consumed by this
our marriage is already better
YET...I am still sad.

I still think about this all the time. The emotion isn't as raw as it was and I am definitely better than I was 5 months ago. But I am not there yet.

I can't help wondering, with all the things fWH is doing to help me, why can't I just feel better???
He is being so supportive, it is hard to be angry at him. It feels like it would do no good. He would take it if I did yell. Sometimes I imagine it, but then I just think it won't help.

Started with new IC, second session is tomorrow. Hoping for some guidance. No one IRL to talk to about this other than IC (my choice).

You guys are a huge help. Thanks for listening.

AFrayedKnot posted 7/15/2013 22:04 PM

It does get better with time. It sounds like your H is trying really hard. That also helps a lot.

I have been stuck in sad alot lately too. I am trying to do more enjoyable things for myself and together with my fWS. Sometimes it feels like I am just going through the motions and sometimes it feels really nice.

What are you doing for you?

What kind of new memories are you building together?

[This message edited by Chicho at 10:04 PM, July 15th (Monday)]

SorrowBhindSmile posted 7/15/2013 22:07 PM

I am 7 months out. My WH is also very remorseful and doing everything he possibly can.

I think that this is such a traumatic thing, that it is just hard to feel better sometimes.

I am definitely better than I was 5 months ago.

THAT is huge. Its big. Its progress. Slow....sure, this is a long and slow process....but it is still progress. Embrace that and hold onto it and be proud of yourself. Baby steps are still steps.

There are many days i find myself down. There was a long spell where i wasnt able to snap out of it. One thing i did to help myself was to keep a daily journal of all the things my WH did for me...things i noticed in him that were different...changes that he made. It could have been something as small as him noticing i did some stupid chore around the house and thanking me...or as big as him realizing how disrespectful something he did was, immediately catching it and changing the action. I wrote down everything. Then, on the days when i felt crappy, i could look back at this big long list of all these things and see, in black and white, what he was doing to make himself a better man for me. Sometimes seeing things in writing just makes it more real somehow.

Hang in there. you are not alone. hugs to you!

reallysad2012 posted 7/16/2013 08:52 AM

I realized last night after I posted that I am only 10 months out...guess I can't do math, or I'm trying to rush the process

I also realized my whiney post sounds like I am trying to rush the process. I know this was a major trauma and it takes time to heal. I can already say time has helped. I think what I am trying to work out is perhaps a fear that this is how it is going to be. That I won't be able to let go of that sad part that keeps cropping up.

Chicho...thanks for the reply. I am glad to know I am not the only one getting stuck in sad. I am the same as you, sometimes going through the motions, sometimes really having a good time. Not sure what I am doing for me other than I have restarted IC to help me figure out what I need to do for me. Should be simple question, but it isn't. I can't figure out what I need.

SBS...I wrote down all the nice things I could think of last night and will continue to add to the list. Thanks for the suggestion.

TryingEveryday posted 7/16/2013 09:52 AM

Hey there ReallySad. First, I think the name you've chosen to use fits pretty much all of us! That's how I feel a great deal of the time - just sad. The anger comes and goes. The horror, disbelief, revulsion, etc. But that sadness is pretty damn persistent.

I'm about seven months out and my wife, like your husband, is doing all the right things (outside of the cheating, that is!). We kinda joke - even though joking is pretty limited these days - that if there were an example of how to do this right, we would be it. She's totally open, extremely remorseful, loving, supporting, basically everything anyone would want in a relationship. I know you've probably read that some marriages can come out stronger after getting through this. I truly believe that to be the case with us. But first - we gotta get through this. Some days I think it will never get better - I will never feel better. But we have found some things that help. Maybe some can work for you. What I do know, is that getting through this trauma takes work - and a great deal of it - on both parts. If you feel/believe your husband is 100% committed to helping you heal and rebuilding your relationship, then it can work. But don't accept anything less. He has to be in it the whole way, not just you.

So here's what we've done -

1. Talk. All the time. Communicate. If you have to, schedule it into your day so it doesn't get set aside while you do everything else that needs to be done. Make it the priority. Not communicating your needs and feelings and emotions only hurts your relationship. Don't hold anything back - it's all important. If your husband wants to help you, he will listen, and respond, even to the "icky" stuff.

2. Live in the "now." This one is hard for me, but I just tell myself, "The past is not what is happening now. Live in the present." Tough to do, but helps. I know it very often feels like the past is still the truth, but it's not. The hurt, betrayal, all that still exists, but hopefully the deception is over and you have to live in the now.

3. Read. Research. Educate yourself. It's not enough to try and just let it get better on it's own. It won't. There are a million sites on the internet for help, this forum being one of them. But one of the best things my wife and I have done is get some books and read them together. You have to get to the "why" of the affair or you can't fully heal. More on that in a sec. With the books, what we do is I read first - like a chapter at a time or so - and underline what I think is important. I also write notes in the margins. Then she reads and does the same. Then we compare and discuss. I know it sounds formal, but it really works. It gives our conversation guidelines. The two best books we've found are:

"Not Just Friends, Rebuilding Trust and Recovering Your Sanity After Infidelity," by Shirley Glass.


"How to Help Your Spouse Heal from Your Affair: A Complete Manual for the Unfaithful," by Linda MacDonald.

Both are very good. The second one is not an easy read for your spouse (damn - too bad, huh?) But this method has done us so much good.

4. Counseling, of course. This is a major trauma and we all need help during a trauma.

5. Journaling helps some - at least for me.

6. Finally - talking and discussing and really being honest about what needs to be fixed. NEVER take responsibility for the cheating. That was his choice and his alone. It was the worst possible thing he could've done to you, but he still chose to do it. He has to make up for that one. Like the commitment I talked about before, if he doesn't take 100% responsibility for his affair, then things are going to be tough. But outside of that - talk about your relationship. Why did this happen? What was wrong in your relationship that helped foster this? I'm not saying at all that you take all the blame, but something wasn't working and a relationship is always about both of you. In my case, we've talked for hours about what we both contributed to the disfunction of our relationship. I'm happy to say, that recognizing the flaws, talking about them, and working on fixing them has transformed our marriage. I have never felt closer to my wife (mixed in with all the crappy feelings!). We both went to both MC and IC and discovered things about ourselves that have truly made us better people.

But again - this is for the relationship. The affair - that's his and he has a lot of making up to do! My wife, one day, said, "I am so sorry. I've hurt you so much. Please give me a lifetime to make it up to you." I said I would, and the reality is, it will probably take most of that lifetime. It gets better day by day, though at times I know I go backwards. But it gets better.

I know this is very long - but one last thing. I want to repeat what I said about your husband being in this 100%. I feel so sad when I read some of these posts and there are these hurting people trying to rebuild a relationship with a spouse who doesn't really give it their whole effort. I wonder why they'd even try to reconcile with someone who treats them with such disrespect. I understand love, more now than ever, but love can only do so much. So again, you can heal and rebuild and have a better, stronger marriage, but only if both of you are totally "in."

I hope some of this helps. Crazy thing is, writing this has helped me. Makes me realize how far we've come. We are determined to be one of "success" stories. One of the couples that make it through infidelity and come out stronger. We are BOTH committed to that. I believe that with my whole heart, and you know how tender trust is at this point!!!

Hang in there. Be strong. And talk - to him, and to those of us who really, really understand what is happening inside of you!!!!!

sisoon posted 7/16/2013 15:10 PM

I also realized my whiney post....

FYI, I didn't sense whining. Be gentle with yourself - if you feel yourself dissing your recovery process, well, stop. Say something nice to yourself instead.

I know this was a major trauma and it takes time to heal.... I think what I am trying to work out is perhaps a fear that this is how it is going to be. That I won't be able to let go of that sad part that keeps cropping up.

The feelings go away as you process them. You WILL feel better. It'll take longer than you think should be necessary, and it'll take way more time than you want it to, but trust me - you will feel joy again. is hard to be angry at him. It feels like it would do no good. He would take it if I did yell.

Sometimes venting helps. It's temporary, and it's not the best method, but sometimes, when the stress is unbearable, it helps to yell. The fact that your H would just listen is a Good Thing - after all, the most relevant response to a vent is, 'Thank you for sharing that.'

The vent works better if you formulate it something like, 'I'm FURIOUS THAT YOU _____!' (As opposed to, 'YOU SOB! YOU DID _____!'

Remember - 2-5 years from the last hurt. Life gets better as you go along, although there are ups and downs, but you've got lots of thoughts and feelings to work through, and that takes time.

reallysad2012 posted 7/19/2013 09:19 AM

Trying and Sisoon, thanks for responding.

I went to IC the day after posting and couldn't put a coherent thought together. At least, it seemed that way to me. And I can't seem to remember much of what IC said except one thing that is stuck in my mind: I have to DECIDE to get over this. She added that is was easy for her to say and hard for me to do.

So, now I am wondering if I can't get better because I haven't made the decision to do so. Trying's post made me wonder about that. Trying sounds so committed and that is awesome. While I do believe fWH and I can make a stronger marriage, and we have already taken steps toward that, I don't feel completely happy about it. I am angry that the positive stuff is coming out of such a bad thing.

I do want to get better. I do want a stronger marriage. Doesn't that sound like I have decided to get better? How do you decide to get better???

heforgotme posted 7/19/2013 11:55 AM

This post really hit home with me bc I have recently (as in last week) begun a campaign with myself to try to stop thinking about this. I have asked all the questions. I have ranted and raved and cried and sobbed. And barring the first 72 hours after discovery (still foggy), he has responded appropriately to everything. But it still hurt so badly.

So, last week I just kind of came to this place within myself where I felt like the ball was in my court. Like maybe I actually had some power to start trying to make this better for me. Because thinking about it all day every day was hurting me terribly and I am the only one who has any control over the inside of my own head.

So far it's helping. I wasn't terribly hopeful when I started, it was kind of a plan born of desperation. And I know that a few months ago i probably couldn't have done it no matter how hard I tried. But I'm hoping I've kind of hit the right spot in my healing to do this.

I have no illusions that I will NEVER think about this again. I don't even think that would be smart. But I really want to excise it from my (our) lives as something that I think about all the time. And I figure I have nothing to lose. If it doesn't work, oh well. It was worth a try and I can't be too hard on myself about it since I never should have been put in this position in the first place.

Hugs to you. I so understand how you feel and hope that something or other will start helping soon....

Undone1 posted 7/19/2013 13:43 PM

At 9 months and a very remoreseful WH I still have to fight off the intrustive thoughts that lead to the sadness and anger everyday. It is exceptionally difficult to stay present in now. Often I feel sad about the past and scared of the future, so it's hard to look forward too. I have come to believe this is the new normal.

reallysad2012 posted 7/20/2013 02:02 AM

So, last week I just kind of came to this place within myself where I felt like the ball was in my court. Like maybe I actually had some power to start trying to make this better for me. Because thinking about it all day every day was hurting me terribly and I am the only one who has any control over the inside of my own head.

This is great. Encouraging. Glad to hear it has been going well for you. I think I need to give something like this a try. I read somewhere else on SI about setting aside time to think about things so you can avoid it during the rest of the day and I may try that.

And, Sisoon, I wanted to thank you for your comment about venting. I tried out a statement like you set up for me. I wasn't yelling. No need to raise my voice at all. I realized that I had not been expressing my anger AT ALL. So, just telling him in a very level tone of voice, "I'm angry about _____" was a big relief.

JustWow posted 7/20/2013 07:35 AM

Our MC told us something about this phenomenon (sp?) that was helpful.

Even though you may have processed some of this stuff alone, or with your IC, and feel like you had made progress, you still need to do some of that in the relationship, as a couple. Kinda like the M is the 3rd patient in the counseling equation. You need to heal/grow, H needs to heal/grow, and so does the M.

He told us that the more we came together to deal with this poo (my word - not his), it actually feels worse, but it is GOOD. WE need to deal with it as a couple, and processing painful stuff is painful.

The more you begin to trust he is there, the more safe you're likely to feel to start unleashing some of this stuff.
And process it, and deal with it TOGETHER, which is GOOD for your M.

Having that "warning" from MC really helped. So when we felt like WTH, we're going backwards, we could KNOW that we weren't. We were doing some hard work - together.

Could be the case with you two. Makes dealing with the pain more bearable if you know it is constructive.

outtanowhere posted 7/20/2013 08:59 AM

I just wanted to offer one more slant to this thread. I lost a 6 year old daughter years ago. The pain & grief of that life event was unbearable at times. Devastation that I had never known & did not have any idea how to deal with. It was years ago during a time when it was just too uncomfortable for people to discuss feelings so the protocol was to just suck it up & deal with it. I nearly lost my mind. Two years later I had that ah ha moment that heforgotme was referring to. I could decide to continue grieving for this child who didn't need me anymore or I could pull myself together & start enjoying & mothering the children I still had. It was a turning point.

Now here I am again in another devastating life event much like when that sweet child died. Only now, it's the marriage that died and we are still very much alive. But, it is the death of a relationship as we knew it. Probably not a bad thing in and of itself but, something that could have been changed without the drastic measures involved with infidelity.

I say all of that to make this point. She died almost 30 years ago now. Some days I can share my memories of her without my heart pounding or a lump swelling in my throat. Other days, not so much. Even now, there are times I think about her & what happened (she died 9 months after the discovery of brain tumor) and those initial feelings of grief come flooding back. It's almost just as raw as when it happened but, it doesn't last long. I cry it out and move on.

I equate that death to the one that has happened in my marriage. It has only been a few months and I am still grieving. On the whole every day seems to get better although some are better than others & now I know that is to be expected. Grief is a crazy thing & it goes away in its own time. Please don't beat yourself up over the fact you are still sad. I did that & it only fed my frustration & delayed my healing. Just try to know that it's normal and it has no time limits. I know that's encouraging & scary at the same time but, it's true so work with it as it comes & don't deny yourself the right to feel whatever you feel. Trust me on this one, its important to your ultimate well being as a person.

I too am thankful that my H is doing all the right things and we are beginning to reconnect. As sime of you mentioned, we too feel closer to each other than we have in a very long time. However, we have had to pay a very dear price to be where we are right now and that to me is a very bitter sweet thought. I think it's only natural that we will always be sad it had to be this way.

[This message edited by outtanowhere at 9:02 AM, July 20th (Saturday)]

TryingEveryday posted 7/20/2013 16:18 PM

Hey thereReallySad.
I'm glad you found my post useful, but I guess maybe I need to add a few things. I am committed and positive that we are going to be able to fix this. My wife is as well. If we weren't in this together, there's no way it could work. and even though I tell myself that I have to live in the present, I still have those days when it just hits me. You know, that punched in the gut feeling. I read on another post somewhere the persons biggest trigger was their spouse. That one hits home.some days I look at my wife and while I'm completely in love and committed to building this marriage with her, just seeing her triggers that punch in the gut. Its that time I most need to tell myself the past is not the reality, the present is. It works most of the time but not always. I think that's the reality of who we are the situation we're in. A situation that we didn't wish for or cause but we're the ones to have to deal with it anyway. So damn unfair that it makes me want to scream! I also really like it when one of the other posts said that you have to be in this together with your spouse. You guys have to fix this together. You can't fix it on your own - not in IC, not in your head, not at home. Your husband has to be in this with you - working through everything with you. Hopefully he's committed to doing that. He should be.

I so wish you the best and hope you find some of that peace you're so desperately looking for. It's funny, I'm only 7 months out from my D Day, and I certainly had my ups and downs on the roller coaster, but at some point, and it wasn't really that long ago, I felt myself turn a corner. Today, as my wife and I run around town doing errands and some shopping, I realize I've had long periods of time, hours even, that I haven't thought about it. As you well know that's huge.

Hang on ReallySad, if you and your husband really love each other you can make it through this. I promise you - you'll have ups and downs, days that'll suck, nights that'll suck worse, but you can make it through. If I didn't have a better relationship with my wife right now, wasn't more in love with her now than ever before, and wasn't sure that she loved me just as much and was committed to building a future while helping me through the rough days (100% of the time), I would never make that promise. But I do. I promise.

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