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He never stopped loving me??

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plainpain posted 8/1/2013 12:42 PM

I hope this is a question some WH might be willing to respond to. I imagine that it comes up a lot, but I am having a really hard time with it and I can't keep going to my husband and asking him over and over to explain. He had a cliche mid-life crisis affair - he's 44, she's 21 - complete with new wardrobe, new vehicle, dancing every night, etc. etc. He confessed everything to me after she told him she's pregnant - I was blind-sided. I thought things were 'off' between us, I knew he had been having a horrible time dealing with turning 40, but I never imagined he had a secret life for an entire year. He had my complete trust.

He swears that he loves me, that he never stopped loving me. He doesn't understand why I can't believe now that he EVER loved me. I can't even look at photographs of my children anymore, because it all feels like one giant lie. To me, love means loyalty. Love means you don't shoot someone in the back, you don't look into their eyes and lie to their face, you don't let another woman wear and keep the sweater that your wife ordered and bought special for you from Scotland. Love means you don't throw away 18 years of deep respect, adoration, encouragement, sacrifice and memories because you feel 'old'.

He put all of himself into his business for years, and I took back seat. He said all of that was for me. He said he felt at the time like he 'deserved' to have a mistress, because of how hard he worked and everything he did for me. All I ever wanted was HIM.

He picked somebody half my age and twice as beautiful. And he doesn't want me to feel like he was 'upgrading'. He doesn't understand why my self-esteem is in the toilet.

To me, I can't compute that as 'love'. He is so very remorseful, repentant, ashamed. He doesn't understand why I don't accept when he says he loved me, he never stopped loving me, even during the affair. What does that even mean?

Markone posted 8/1/2013 12:48 PM

No real advice, but just letting you know you're not alone.

I kind of get compartmentalization, but can't fathom why if my WW loved me, she'd do this.

That said, as is often said here - it's not about the Betrayed S - but how broken the Wayward is, then it "makes sense".

Then again, hard to make sense of Crazy.

Markone posted 8/1/2013 12:51 PM


twice as beautiful

Understandable to think this but don't. I don't find anything beautiful about a person so fucked up they think it's Ok to date a married guy 23 years her senior

Lonelygirl10 posted 8/1/2013 12:57 PM

To me, I can't compute that as 'love'. He is so very remorseful, repentant, ashamed. He doesn't understand why I don't accept when he says he loved me, he never stopped loving me, even during the affair. What does that even mean?

I really hope a WS answers this, because I'm struggling with the same thing. To me, the word "love" is completely opposite from the action of having sex with someone else. I absolutely cannot wrap my mind around the idea that he loved me while he was with OW. And like you, I wonder whether he ever actually loved me, because how can you love me and do that. And I feel like he doesn't understand at all why I'm having those doubts.

painpaingoaway posted 8/1/2013 13:04 PM

What does that even mean?
It means he's an idiot. My H said the same thing. I told him how DARE he use the word love. Evidently he had no idea what real love was, and apparently never had, or he would not have been capable of betraying me. I'm sorry, but when these way wards try to use the 'L' word, I want to vomit. They have not a clue what love is. I told my H he'd better open up the dictionary, and find a better word to use, because a cheater using the word love is absolute blasphemy.

He needs to do some work on himself, and discover what real love is. And saying you 'love' your wife while fucking some 20 yr old twit is nauseating. That is not love, that is a slap in the face, a knife in the back, and reaching into your spouses chest and ripping their heart out.

I found this quote a few years ago, and for me, it describes what real love is. Ask your WH if this was what he was honoring you with while fucking the tramp:

The ultimate definition of love, I believe, is one person ascribing significance & totally enhancing the existence of another human being through their affection for them.

When you love someone, their wishes become your wishes, their delights become your delights, their pleasures become your pleasures, and their pain becomes your pain.

Anything else is not love, but selfishness.

Love gives us the ability to put ourselves second to someone else, to make ourselves number two & even take pleasure in doing so, thus defying our essential human nature & survival-instinct to be selfish & to put ourselves first. ...

painpaingoaway posted 8/1/2013 13:08 PM

Oh, and really, what else are they going to say when confronted? Of course they are going to say they loved us! They've been caught! What, are they going to say they hated us? Noooo, not unless they are wanting to D.

libertyrocks posted 8/1/2013 13:11 PM

They didn't love themselves. So, how could they love us?

[This message edited by libertyrocks at 1:12 PM, August 1st (Thursday)]

Missymomma posted 8/1/2013 13:12 PM

He put all of himself into his business for years, and I took back seat. He said all of that was for me. He said he felt at the time like he 'deserved' to have a mistress, because of how hard he worked and everything he did for me. All I ever wanted was HIM.

This is the key. He felt entitled. It will take a lot of work on himself to figure out why he had this mindset. In his warped way he did love you. Just because he felt like he loved you doesn't mean he was really loving you. Loving someone is about the things we do not just some warm fuzzy feeling.

sunflowergirl30 posted 8/1/2013 13:17 PM

I have seen this a lot on here...the ws saying," but I always loved you!" Heck, my wh said that. Like he should get a gold sticker for it! It makes no sense. Were his actions loving? Hell no! I believe he believed he loved me. He probably did but in his selfish flawed way on his terms not mine. Did he love me the way I deserved to be loved? Fuck no! Thats the truth. Did he honor and protect me? No...

So ya in wh eyes he loved me...his love just didnt mean much. Just as his word, promises, vows didnt mean much. I struggle with that everyday. I am not in reconciliation. My wh is not transparent or fixing himself.

The twit your wh "used" is nothing more than that...a twit. A piece of ass he used to fill his empty self. If she was older and fugly it wouldnt hurt any less! I know! My wh twit is older than us by 13 yrs but looks 20 yrs older than me. shes married and fugly. Do i feel better? No! Its like damn! Could she at least looked worth

But really its not all about how the ow looked! Its how she made his oh so lacking ego feel. That speaks volumes about her though. Shes sad and pathetic. Might have some daddy issues too. Shes shit. Ya she will let a man use her like a toilet. High five to her...not!

Shes just an object...a tool. The key to fantasy fucktart land. No decent woman of any age wants any part of that. Stop giving her so much credit and power. She could only get stolen moments and your left overs......your the WIFE.

painpaingoaway posted 8/1/2013 13:17 PM

He said he felt at the time like he 'deserved' to have a mistress
oh yeah. Forgot about that little gem. So a loving wife wasn't enough for him?
Deserved a little something extra huh? Lawd Jesus, if my H had ever said that, I believe I'd be sitting in jail right now.

sailorgirl posted 8/1/2013 13:17 PM

The quality of a spouse's love is only as good as the quality of the spouse themselves.

My WH was not a strong, responsible, loyal, emotionally healthy, giving person. He was screwed-up boy and a shit-head, so his "love" was not worth shit.

Of course, he wants to think that love is just a feeling and so since he still had some lukewarm feelings towards me, he still loved me.

Whatever. Love is a choice; it is respect; it is the will to extend yourself for someone else and act in a loving way towards them even when it's damn hard.

plainpain, you are right about everything except that OW is not beautiful. Nothing beautiful about a train wreck with no self respect.

lordhasaplan? posted 8/1/2013 13:19 PM

They didn't love themselves. So, how could they love us?


In fact I am not sure they have any idea what love is. Giving intead of entitled recieving, and the feelings that come with giving yourself to another fully. They throw love around but really havent the foggiest idea what it is.

Love isnt blow jobs in your parking lot at work, or having sex in the basement so your son doesnt hear you and wake.

Lots of love for me and our son in those decisions. Huh, I know she didnt love me there. she can say she did, but actions speak louder than words.

[This message edited by lordhasaplan? at 1:19 PM, August 1st (Thursday)]

plainpain posted 8/1/2013 13:45 PM

My husband will be the first to say that he is/was broken, that it was never about her, or about me or about what I did or didn't do for him, that there are no excuses for what he did. He takes full and total responsibility for it, he is trying to fully understand it himself so that it never, ever happens again, and is being very, very vulnerable and honest with himself and with me about what his thought process was.

He understands now that feeling entitled to an affair is really, really, really crazy thinking. It was a long, slow descent for him to that place where somehow suddenly that seemed like a sensible, rational choice. I can wrap my mind around most of that - I am human, too.

When he says he loves me now I just want to say, 'Big fat hairy deal. What is that worth to me? You have the capacity to act like I am dead, like I don't even exist.'

I feel like I want a new word.'Love' just doesn't mean anything to me anymore, no matter who says it.

lordhasaplan? posted 8/1/2013 13:52 PM

no, for me love as real meaaning. I must love, it makes me whole. But I dont have to love her. that is a choice I make. But dont do disgraceful things and claim there was love there. not buying it. My Wand I had a IC who pointed out the first time she said this that an affair is an aggressive hostile angy act. you cant love and and have an affair.

Missymomma posted 8/1/2013 13:52 PM

When he says he loves me now I just want to say, 'Big fat hairy deal. What is that worth to me? You have the capacity to act like I am dead, like I don't even exist.'

This early on that is totally normal! What I said was even worse than that. It is ok to have a negative reaction to him telling you that he loves you. Let him know that it is going to take a lot of showing you that he loves you to recover from all of his selfish, destructive actions.

crazyblindsided posted 8/1/2013 13:56 PM

Yep mine said the same thing, but my WH's actions during his A were far from loving. I was treated like the dirt on his shoe. He was moody all the time taking out anger on me and the kids. I kept asking day in and day out what was wrong only to get the same answer that his life was horrible and his job was stressing him out.

I do not think my WH loved me during his A. He loves me now and he loved me before his A, but not during.

plainpain posted 8/1/2013 13:57 PM

"an affair is an aggressive hostile angry act".


plainpain posted 8/1/2013 14:02 PM

I am very aware that, even now, because I LOVE him, I do not want other people to think badly of him - even strangers who don't know him from a hole in the ground. I want to PROTECT him, save him from HUMILIATION. It's so bizarre to me. He couldn't possibly have loved me and do this. But what do I want him to say? 'I didn't love you'? I don't want him to say that.

olwen posted 8/1/2013 14:04 PM

I totally get what you mean. Mine says he never stopped 'loving' me but he did conveniently tell himself our marriage was over and he was not 'in love with me' anymore, funny he didn't start thinking that until she came on the scene.

He miraculously made room for her in his life by moaning about me and shoving me into a tiny corner of his brain and letting her fill the rest of his head. Yet he now says he would never have left me and it was all for the attention. So he conveniently left the marriage in effect, without consulting me, so he could have his 'bit of fun at work'.

Now he expects me to suddenly believe I am the most wonderful woman in the world. I have always been 'kindly advised' by him to lose weight - for my health of course. Now I am told he is a man who loves my curves. I am no longer overweight, I am now 'slightly overweight but sexy'Ia m the most perfect person in the world.

Hmmmmmm two guesses why I don't believe him? He even wrote me a note saying I love you more than yesterday but not as much as tomorrow, I saw red. Damn right you didn't love me in any way I recognise for quite a few yesterdays mate!

TxsT posted 8/1/2013 14:07 PM

Not knowing what everyone`s story is here I will just tell a bit of mine. maybe it will be helpful.

I am recovering from my husbands 4+ year affair. We have been together 32 years and married for 25 next month (lord help me on that day I know it will be a toughy) My husband has been very open and honest with me about his feelings before, during and after the A. His A was in its dying stages when I found out about it so he was past the point of the incredible high and addiction that occurs within the WS and OW.

I struggled with this very topic and still do to some extent because it came up again just the other day. I really like Pains definition of love. That is my feelings on the word too.

What I have come to find out from my H is that, due to our circumstances (he traveled weekly, I was left to be a single mom for 20 years, his job became his life, he felt we would no longer have an intimate relationship together and to be fair to him we hadn`t had one for quite a while) we both just slowly drifted into our own worlds and neither of us worked to make our M happy. Life got in the way and we let it. Neither of us brought the issues forward because we were worried what the answers or outcome might be. We did, and still do love each other very much. My husbands world also involved giving his job 100% like yours Plain. It became his world and he, in his own mind, felt that he was doing it "for the family so he could provide what he did for us" What he came to realize through our continued MC and IC is that he was doing it in the end for his ego. It gave him his satisfaction, his recognition and his power. When I stopped giving him these things thorough our marriage, he looked for them from his job. He was extremely successful. He was also under the pressure from his father to not fail....something he carries with him from childhood.

Then, the unthinkable entered our world. He came in contact with someone at work who was just like him. She was driven, feeding her own ego but what he didn't know was that she also had a hidden agenda. Her Spouse was about to file papers for D and she wasn't going to let him rain on her parade. Through business travel she came in contact with my hubby. He didn't know who she was until their first trip to Vnz at the end of a 5 year deal he was wrapping up. She fell hopelessly for my sweet hubby and made the first of several unprovoked sexual advances towards him that trip. She followed him to the bathroom of the restaurant all business group was eating at and boldly shoved him against the wall and shoved her tongue down his throat. When that didn't work she showed up at his room later that night in just a towel. I know this because he told me when he called me that night so flustered and scared. Even though I confronted this woman when they returned she continued. He told me he could handle it, that he didn't need me to make a scene at work. I trusted him because he had been honest with me when she came on to him. He didn't have to tell me this stuff. So I let him handle it. Trust me when I say I will NEVER not listen to my GUT FEELINGS again!!!!

Not taking no for an answer, this snake turned to friendship and befriended him, sensing that somewhere down deep they shared a similar desire for something better. After a year of this and after a year of having unchecked access to my husband in foreign countries he slowly caved. 4 years later, and 10 huge mountains of pain, we now sit piecing our marriage back together. I am not making excuses for him, I am just sharing with you the truth.

When I ask him how he could ever be with her and then come home to me he was at a loss for words at first. Now he explains that he really did feel our romance, and love, was over....he didn't feel the love coming from me and she was more then willing and able to make him feel special, important and sexy. After entering into the affair he knew it was wrong, but he continued. The power of an illicit tryst being 100 million times more fun then what he thought was a sexless marriage. Does this info hurt me??? You bet it does, badly. But what it also does is force we to re-examine how we got to this nasty place in hell.

Thankfully we have been able to gather all the things together on both sides of this equation that caused us to get to where we are today. My husband has also been able to share with me many of his feelings for her and for the affair. Yes he did think he was in love with her. Yes at one point he feels he would have left me if she had been amicable. No he is not unhappy the affair is over. It had been dying for quite some time and he was disillusioned with what it was becoming. He realized before it was even over how horrible it all was and how disgusting he was. He wanted to kill himself, I didn't know this because it was while the A was still going on. In my endless hunting of facts, pictures, ect I found a letter he had wrote to himself. In that letter was how he knew he had really screwed up, he had made a mess of his life and he knew this would kill me when it came out. I got to read the words I love her but am not in love with her next to my name with a sub note about non sex, intimacy or communication. Talk about rude awakening!!!

We have been in therapy since day 5 after Dday. We have worked so incredibly hard as I know all of you have. But my hubby has learned through his IC that his past, his childhood, his controlling father, our life, his job and a very distinct set of circumstances led him to think he could do this. He is remorseful, I see a huge pile of shame in his eyes every day and he has done exactly everything I have asked him to do. He is devoted to this process. For my part, after the darkest days, I had to, at some point in time, decide that I could move on from this. I know it will always be there lurking in the corners of my mind. Yes it will always hurt to some extent. I will forgive him but not 100% and that's ok with both of us. He needs to always remember so that I know he will never do this again.

We are far from perfect but, with some give and take from both sides we are happier now then we where before the A. In a distortedly strange way, we know we would have never gotten here if it wasn't for the A.


[This message edited by TxsT at 2:08 PM, August 1st (Thursday)]

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