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How long before you can completely let go of the past?

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BrokenDaisy posted 7/25/2013 04:26 AM

In the reconciliation forum it is often said that if R works the timeline is 3-5 years before one heals. Is that the same for divorce? Is it another 3-5 years after it's final or is the process more speedy if you filed (and want to file?) long after dday? Can I subtract the 19 months I've already worked on getting through this? I don't want to deal another 3-5 years with this crap. I just want to be able to move on.

I've never gotten the whole truth (he swears I have it but yeah buddy you didn't just have sex one time and only kissing with all the other OW - there's 3 confirmed OW but he still swears he only slept with one ones and he didn't finish and this happened a year before dday but he didn't have sex again with that OW or the 1 that followed or came before this one. I'm not an idiot ) I have let go of much of that but there is definitely still frustration lingering. I know I'll never know the truth but how do I let go of the anger of the unfairness of it all? It's the biggest thing that still holds me back a bit. This has not bothered me for months now but suddenly this month (final in-house separation month) it's been bugging the hell out of me again. I deserve at least the whole truth of that which destroyed my life. KWIM?

My emotions have been super erratic lately. I know it is with the divorce almost done and moving and packing (facing all the memories) I just want closure you know? I've even contemplated contacting the many OW to get info and closure but I know I shouldn't.

As with most of my posts no definite point to this. Just wondering how long on average to FULLY heal. I'm done done done and have no more wish to be with stbxwh. I just want to be able to let go of the details now too but how do you do that without knowing it all? Please tell me this won't bug me forever!

ninebark posted 7/25/2013 05:03 AM

I think it is silly to expect a firm timeline. We are all different, our situations are different. I am 2 years separated and finally getting divorced...papers getting signed by ex on the 30th when he returns from wok.

I have a very amicable divorce compared to others, we are friendly, civil, he pays cs and gives me money for sports and any other child related expense I ask we have no animosity, I have been dating a great guy and enjoying life to its fullest.....if you had told me this when I found out about the A i would have told you you were nuts, but here I m. Lol

I gave up on closure and fairness, there is none. I think I was able to move forward when I realized it was over and just put it all behind me, it doesn't matter any more, to me anyway, we are done, I no longer care to be tormented with gory details, it is time to focus only on me and DS.

I know how hard it is so be strong and do something good just for you.

[This message edited by ninebark at 5:03 AM, July 25th (Thursday)]

BrokenDaisy posted 7/25/2013 05:25 AM

Yeah I know you're right! Thanks

It's just frustrating because I have reached acceptance that it's over. I am no longer conflicted about that. Our divorce has also gone amicably so far.

BUT I cycle back to it bugging me. I don't know if it is because he has been part of my whole life (childhood friends) that I'm struggling to let go completely of the truth. I think it's more about him finally owning up than it is about the truth. After he ruined my life the least he could do is give me the whole story so I can reach full closer without these things bugging me every now and again.

I think i'm just worn out. I don't know why this is bothering me again after all this time. I haven't obsessed about it in months and BAM suddenly today it hits me again. This whole month I have been cycling through emotions I thought I already dealt with (anger, despair, paranoia etc) i did all that already. I don't get why I am all over the place again. It's irritating.

I need a break. One more week and the move will be done, new place for son and I. Hopefully my sanity will return then!

Sad in AZ posted 7/25/2013 05:36 AM

I don't want to discourage you, but I'm more than 6 years out, and I still get caught up in ruminating about things. Luckily, there are very few (if any) triggers and not a lot of emotion around my thoughts, but the do haunt me occasionally.

Think of this as you do of life--it's a process rather than a project.

ninebark posted 7/25/2013 06:09 AM

I re read my post. I didn't intend to make this sound all so It isn't! It is hard to let go.

I struggled with the fact that he gets away scott free, everyone thinks he is Mr. Wonderful and fun. He got to have his freedom and fun and I was left with the wreckage adn raising our child. But once I reached a point of acceptance that life isn't fair, I realized I didn't lose out at all. I got to be free of the crap and I get to raise my son. I get to see him every single day. It doesn't get better than that.

I really did focus on myself. I took up running, lost weight, learned to sew, joined a single parent club, a book club..etc. I did all kinds of stuff to keep busy, and improve myself. Now I find myself enjoying life again. I have a new BF who loves my DS and we do all kinds of family things together, and I find myself thinking less and less of the Ex. As with anything it takes time and work.....
I realize that doesn't help at all, but hopefully it can show that there is happiness after all the crap we got though. We are there with ya!!!

BrokenDaisy posted 7/25/2013 07:36 AM

Oh no ninebark I actually appreciated your post a lot. English isn't my first language so I come across awkward sometimes (being awkward probably also adds to it, lol) :) Rereading mine as well I can see the "yeah" might've seemed dismissive but it was directed towards myself in frustration. Not dismissing what you said. I'm frustrated that I'm not there yet if that makes sense.

All you said is what I know to be true! It's getting my emotions in line with my logic that can be tricky I am working towards that. The emotions aren't nearly as strong anymore as they were at the beginning and hopefully someday like Sad in AZ I won't trigger when thinking of it. I trigger much less already which is a relief. I guess my biggest issue is patience. I'm so sick of all of this I want to reach a place of indifference NOW! But I have to continue feeling what I feel and focus on myself and my son as you said.

Thank you sad in AZ it helps knowing it's "normal". Another issue of mine is that I am too hard on myself when I "fail" (in my eyes) by getting swept up by it all again. Instead of giving myself slack for going through an extra stressful month (so it's understandable to trigger more and be more emotional again) I am nitpicking everything I am failing at. At least I can identify the why's by now and triggers don't last as long as they used to.

I honestly think as soon as we (my son and I) are out of this house and gone from stbxwh (next week!!!) my sanity will return to a much healthier level.

Thank you for responding and listening and for letting me bounce my many jumbled thoughts off of you guys.

[This message edited by BrokenDaisy at 7:38 AM, July 25th (Thursday)]

ExposedNiblet posted 7/25/2013 10:22 AM

I think it all depends on the person and the circumstances. Definitely years; I'd go so far as to say more than 5, but YMMV.

For myself, I can say I've dealt with/am dealing with:
1. the emotional damage done during my XH's affairs
2. a difficult divorce (and the baggage from that), and
3. HX's mind-fuckery that will occasionally still rear its ugly head from time to time, usually in dealing with the boys.

Although most of these are in the past, they bleed into the present, so it's almost impossible to really "let go" because I'm still dealing with it.

As long as XH is paying CS, I will have some connection to him, and to the past.

I hope that someday, when the boys are grown and on their own and XH and I won't have any reason to communicate with each other, I will be able to truly put the past behind me and close that door.

That's not to say that there aren't things I can do now to put some distance between the past and myself, I'm just saying that it's impossible to "completely" let go.

That's why detachment is so fantastic.

inconnu posted 7/25/2013 12:59 PM

I'm close to 5 years out. Ex left 4 years ago. I've been divorced for a little over 3 years now.

In June, I found out ex had married OW back in Feb. My 18 yr old son told me. It didn't phase me at all.

But also in June, I went through the 4th anti-versary of finding the secret phone and confirming that the affair had gone underground. My head completely forgot about it, but my body remembered. I was seriously stressed out, and anxious, even though I had no idea why.

So while I consider myself healed, and have definitely moved on with my life, triggers still happen. Even when I don't recognize them as triggers any more.

missmydogs posted 7/25/2013 22:00 PM

It depends. I'm 3 years out and while I do still trigger, it's overall a relief!

inhishands55 posted 7/25/2013 22:20 PM

BrokenDaisy,,Don't be so hard on yourself...It has been a full moon and that has always bothered me when it came to the exh...

He has been gone over 13yrs and I will be divorced 12 in Sept...I took me longer, I think, because we had so many years together...We worked together, and I still live in the house we built together...

It took me about 10yrs to finally say I am over him and the mess...I know that is a long time, but that was just me..I married him in my 30's and thought I knew who I was marrying...We had live together for almost 6 yrs when we got married...But once we got married things changed for the worse..

In the 18 yrs we were together, we might have had 6 good years...So don't beat yourself up if it takes you a little while do get rid of that part of your past..I luckily had no children with my exh only material things...

My IC told me to stay away from him, that he was killing me or would kill me one way or the other...

Since my divorce, he has went down hill fast with the OW and she has kicked him to the curb too..He is no longer my problem..And I am so glad of that...

Keep posting and keep strong, you will survive..This too shall pass... :

hexed posted 7/25/2013 22:25 PM

I'm 5+ years out and I just found a chink in my healing. I'm 99.9% of the way there but once in a while....*sigh*

Feeling Consumed posted 7/25/2013 23:15 PM

2-1/2 years out and still feeling maybe 70% cured, but on bad days I drop back down to only about 20-30%. Thank God the bad days are getting fewer and farther between.

BrokenDaisy posted 7/26/2013 04:37 AM

Thanks for all the insights everyone!

Ashland13 posted 7/27/2013 20:15 PM

FWIT (From What I'm Told), it can take a very long time to heal from divorce too.

My father is 16 years out and said he still has triggers that cause him little twinges or pangs. A memory or driving by something familiar. He was not cheated on that he found, but abandoned by my mother and now is trying to help me.

I see his pain when he sees me cry and it is like a mirror. He was left much like I am but in a different way as the staying spouse, with all of our questions...what to do with this and that and how to carry on.

I am finding, in small spurts and realizations, that the withdrawal pain of 180 is better than the fresh hurts that come from contact and finally am seeing the truth and light in the wisdom of that theory for recovery.

I don't think I will ever, ever forget the man who once stood by my side, nor will I forget the treachery he wrought on my life and children's.

I suspect the boomerang of feelings is "natural", because there is so much to process, no matter what all of our different situations are. It seems like a process must be waded through in order to get to acceptance and even then the feelings will boomerang.

If it's helpful at all, what I realized lately is that my grief is not for the man lately, but for the future that was my life that got ruined, without my knowledge or choice. When I am clear-minded enough I can sort out what my feelings are about and I am realizing that there is a lot more to it than just the man and all that he's a whole entire life changed, not of my wishes, not of my choice, but it happened and I am left broken but not dead.

No, I don't have the whole truth either and I have that to accept too. You know, nearly Exh lies so often that I don't know how much his version of the truth really matters any more?

This is another hurdle that helps me through the grief and with it I will close my post: discovering what truly matters for the rest of our todays has gone a long way towards giving me stronger moments. Realizing that the grief is just a feeling and "I'm really okay" when I look around...helps me move on and I hope it will help you, too.

It's not easy.

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