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He's (WH) hurting so much- I'm confused

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Morhurt posted 8/4/2013 20:16 PM

So, I blew my lid the other night when H said that it would help if I "met him half way", I told him that I was so far past half way, that half way would be more like me allowing him to empty my trash and that's it etc.
Anyway, he's been trying very hard at R all along (couple months), doing and saying all the right things for the most part (he can get defensive occasionally).
But now... It's like he's broken. He's weepy and sad and feels so unworthy and more. I'm truly glad that he is so remorseful but it is extremely painful to watch. He goes to IC 1x/week but has decided to stop as he feels it's pointless, nothing will change what he did (duh!) and he feels he doesn't deserve to be happy. I'm worried. Also, he said it would probably be at least six months before he would allow himself to feel happy. I told him I needed to feel emotionally and physically close and he said that he doesn't deserve to make love to me. I told him I was feeling abandoned, he hugged and cuddled me and told me he loved me etc but he's just so broken.
What do I do?

jjct posted 8/4/2013 20:32 PM

Take care of yourself.
Try the 180.
He's inverting this.
Reverting you back to take care of me mommy status.

He's acting like a baby, to deflect the consequences. Time for him to put his big boy boots on and stop playing the woe is me card.

Take care of yourself. 180.
It will move you further toward healing.

It's as if he's trying on remorse like a new set of nappies. He's just crying about the fit.
Tough shit.
Don't change his nappie for him.

Playing the poor widdle me schtick keeps it all about him, while under the guise of remorse.
Do not buy it.

brkn_heartd posted 8/4/2013 20:43 PM

My WH went through this. I allowed him to feel bad, however, I did not let him off the "hook". I acknowledged his pain, and I believe he had the pain. We worked through both of our pain but I believe acknowledging it was very helpful.

Blobette posted 8/4/2013 21:22 PM

It's all about him, isn't it? Poor dear! Gee, it's just like someone just ripped his heart out and threw it on the floor.... Oops, that would be YOU.

Tell the asshole to stop with the self-pity and start acting like a grown-up. He can get back to you once he's able to be an equal partner, and take responsibility for himself.

Scubachick posted 8/4/2013 21:24 PM

My husband tried this early on. He would say things like "I'm such an F up" "I'm a loser". I said don't make this about you right now. I'm the one that's hurting. Quit feeling sorry for yourself. It was really a turn off when he said things like that.

Morhurt posted 8/4/2013 21:39 PM

I'm not sure, I can't be 100% about anything but I "think" he's really feeling terrible about what he did. He tells me a million times/day how sorry he is, how ashamed he is of his choices and actions etc. He hugs and supports me when I'm crying answers all my questions (a lot of these things he's done all along) He's still doing more than than the normal share of household and kid duties, by his choice. He's stopped taking his iPhone with him and never seems to even look at it.
The hard part for me is that a while ago I told him that when I'm hurting and he tells me that he's sorry or whatever but doesn't seem to "feel" my pain, it feels insincere. So now he's feeling it. All of it. Obsessing about it. He's sure I can't forgive him or be happy again. I'm confused about my own feelings. I wanted him to hurt and show his remorse and pain, but now that he is I find it draining and challenging. :(
I tried (for a few hours) to not show him that I cared about him but it tore me up so badly inside that I stopped. It felt so wrong. I asked him what he thought I should do (because I'm obviously an idiot) and he said to ignore him at first but when I couldn't take it anymore he said that maybe I should follow my heart. I don't know. I make him sound manipulating but it doesn't feel like that. On the other hand I had NO clue he was having A's until I got a call from an OWH.

Morhurt posted 8/4/2013 21:49 PM

Some background in case it matters, though I doubt it does:
We've been married almost 15 years and have four amazing daughters. We never really fought and i can honestly say that once we got past the first couple of years with two babies under two, we've never even had a "rough patch". We were married a bit young (I was 22, he was 24) due to a surprise pregnancy. His twin sister that was his absolute best friend died skiing only three months before I got pregnant (we had been dating for years) and one of his older brothers died of cancer 10 months before his sister. He was in complete emotional shock and never (ever) grieved the death of his sister. I chose to protect him from his grief by letting him lead the grieving process (which of course never happened) and deflecting people's questions about her.
I guess seeing him hurting so much now A: reminds me of the deaths and makes me want to protect him (which obviously didn't help), and B: scares the crap out of me thinking he's going to actually let ALL his heartbreak hit him at once and implode.

jjct posted 8/4/2013 22:17 PM

Stop. Really STOP!
to fix him.

Tell us how the 180 is going for you instead.

Got no stories about that?

You should write
stories about yourself.
That is your life isn't it?
Stories about yourself.

Morhurt posted 8/4/2013 23:47 PM

I'm confused, I thought the 180 was in part to shock a WS into realizing what they might lose and get out of the affair fog and maybe also to protect yourself if WS is still wandering. How does it help R if he's remorseful and maintaining NC but just not getting everything right?

womaninflux posted 8/5/2013 00:02 AM

it helps recovery because it helps YOU take the steps to heal and detach from everything he is thinking/not thinking/doing/not doing/saying/not saying. Helps you get into a better frame of mind to do what you need to do to move forward, with or without the WS.

onedayatatime321 posted 8/5/2013 00:38 AM

Like jjct said, "STOP!"

I discovered my FWS's affair. He lied, TT'ed, and told me it was just an EA.

As Christians, he confessed his sin before our congregation of "sinning against me because of his pride and arrogance". That very afternoon, all he could do was was cry.... Several times I asked if there was more to his EA. He answered, "no". He went to bed and wept for hours. I held him, I tried to comfort him, I asked him repeatedly if he needed to tell me more. The answer was always - no.

A week later, I discovered the truth via emails.

Keep looking. Continue to ask. Continue to PROTECT yourself --the 180! Stop protecting him because of FOO (family of origin) issues. My husband has multiple FOO issues and I believed we had overcome them after 30 freaking years of marriage!!!

His affair was what he wanted.... Yes, they need IC but that is no reason to have an affair.

Unfortunately, I didn't discover SI for several months after DDay. Your WS cannot be trusted right now AND you need to protect yourself. As much as you want to believe and trust him, he needs to prove himself. You must trust your instincts!!

Hang in there. This is beginning of a long road.

Sorry for my rant, I'm having a triggery day.

heforgotme posted 8/5/2013 00:56 AM

One thing that might help if you're ready for it is to start introducing some marriage enrichment type stuff in addition to working through all the A crap. Maybe this will give him some hope and help him see what could be possible.

He does NOT need to stop IC. He needs to figure out his whys in order to heal. And he needs to turn that victim mentality into something constructive. "I suck" is not a solution to anything.

If he's doing everything he should, then honestly I wouldn't 180 him right now. But I would keep an eye on this pity party to make sure that it's not a way for him to avoid dealing with things. I don't like the "meet him halfway" comment. I think it's too soon for talk like that. You've already done that and more if you've let him stick around.

Nature_Girl posted 8/5/2013 01:34 AM

You know, maybe he is remorseful. Maybe.

Maybe not.

Even if he is, you cannot possibly have any kind of constructive adult conversation while he's carrying on in the best Drama Queen fashion.

My STBX used to manipulate me with his histrionics. Oh Lord, I was certain he was remorseful. He would cry & sob. Snot bubbles & spittle running out of his mouth. He'd declare himself the biggest fuck-up, that me & the kids would be better off if he was dead. He would carry on with the drama until I was the one comforting him.

It took me what, 17 years? Seventeen years or so to realize that his extreme outbursts of remorse were actually ways to deflect my attention from the true problem(s). I mean, how could I possibly force conversations about ---whatever--- when he's so sad & crying? What kind of meanie would I be to press the adult issues when he was crying like a baby? In fact, on the one or two occasions when I did try to forge ahead and discuss the problems, he'd then manage to ask me how I could continue to gut him & kick him when he was down. Oh man, that totally worked on me.

He knew how to get me to shut up and back off. He played me. Played me like a fiddle. I didn't even realize my strings were being pulled.

I was such a fool.

Don't get played. You tell him to man the hell up and start doing some heavy lifting with your marital problems. And then you do that 180 like your life depends on it.

The 180 isn't about manipulating the WS. It's about helping the BS grow a spine and a self-protective emotional covering.

jjct posted 8/5/2013 06:54 AM

I thought the 180 was in part to shock a WS into realizing

No. The 180 is for you. You only.
If it is used as a manipulative tool, you are doing it wrong.

Yes, it is for you when there is no remorse.
It is also for you when there is manipulative game-playing, "poor widdle me" crap.

How dare these cheaters hold their pain in front of them as a shield!
It's bullshit. Plain and simple.

summerain posted 8/5/2013 07:03 AM

im sorry i really dont understand about what he means by "meeting you halfway".

What does he want you to do? this statement worries me

Morhurt posted 8/5/2013 08:02 AM

Lauren, I agree. He was referring to that particular argument but I still gave him hell for saying it. And continue to. I think he meant that because we had a specific argument (related to A) and he apologized for his part in the argument, that it was my job to hear his apology and try o accept it. I told him he was out to lunch in no uncertain terms. That comment still hurts me.
I made him sleep on the couch last night.

PeaceLove187 posted 8/5/2013 08:59 AM

You know, I recognize it has to be really, really hard for the same person who avoided reality by having an A to now man up and endure the months and months of harsh reality required by R. We know they have extremely poor coping mechanisms and yet we expect them to cope. The thing is--if they are ever going to be a safe partner, then they need to learn how to cope.

Your H needs to continue in IC and I suspect he wants out of it now because his IC is forcing him to face truths about himself which he doesn't want to face. So when is he going to face them?

I get that your H feels terrible about himself but if he gets stuck there then he will always be stuck in the victim mentality. And of course you're sympathetic and of course you can't imagine him doing this to be manipulative, but have you seen glimmers of it? I hate thinking my H was using his tears to manipulate me but one time he was tearfully telling me how he was doing everything he could to R and I pointed out that no, he's doing somethings but he's not doing everything he could. He gave me this odd look as if "wow, she's getting too smart for this stuff to work".

It's possible your H is too emotionally fragile to be R material. It's possible R will break him. But if he's too weak to endure R, then how can he be strong enough to be a good marriage partner? And if this is just him handling the pain of his A, then why shouldn't he feel that pain? You're feeling it, so why should you feel as if you have to protect him from it? You've probably cried a zillion times, so why shouldn't he cry too? Not that I'm advocating being mean to him, but asking questions and discussing the A are necessary healing actions.

Morhurt posted 8/5/2013 12:11 PM

Thank you all. It helps. It really, really helps. I think he's starting to get it but only time will tell I guess.

Morhurt posted 8/5/2013 15:03 PM

I just sobbed about a miscarriage that I had over 9 years ago. No one (H, midwife, dr, family) was supportive at the time. I was 16 wks along with my 3rd when it happened. I was alone with my 3 & 5 yos and had to call an ambulance. I hemorrhaged so much that they had transfusion blood ready. It was so traumatic but the next day was business as usual. It's crazy to me that once I open those gates there is so much hurt. It felt good to tell H all of it. And to cry, cry, cry for the baby I never got to hold.

tushnurse posted 8/5/2013 15:25 PM

MoHurt - All of us deal with grief and shame in different ways, and perhaps your H has reached his max, and is allowing himself to wallow in self pity. However that isn't doing the work to fix what is broken in him, and certainly isn't doing the work to heal the relationship.

It's ok to let him hurt, and grieve, but he has to be able to manage that, and cope with it. That is why it's really really really important for him to conintue with IC. If he is starting to really deal with the painful stuff that he has been able to keep boxed up all along and the box has been opened, then he needs to take the contents out, and look at it, and find it's proper place.
I think a lot of WS quit IC when this starts to happen, or they really hear the things they don't want to hear. This is where you have to be strong and say you go to IC, and figure this shit out, or your new home at night will be the couch.

I am sorry that you weren't allowed to grieve your miscarriage, so many years ago. Our society acts like it's no big deal, and though it never happened to me, I know I would have been a mess had it. It's good that you were able to share those thoughts and emotions, and that he shared that with you.

Wishing you (((and strength)))

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