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Aren't we settling for less, if we decide to R?

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TrulySad posted 8/19/2013 16:10 PM

I'm so torn over this question. Why on earth do we consider R with a person who decided at some point in our relationship, that we weren't worth as much as someone else was? This is my third relationship, over 27 years where a man cheated on me. And I honestly no longer believe there are "reasons" for their infidelity. They weren't confused, or sad, or forced, or in a bad place, or whatever crud they come up with. Isn't the bottom line, that they decided we weren't all they wanted?

So why do we consider R, and now not only have lived through one of the most painful hurts a person can experience....but now we subject ourselves to a lifetime of always watching, always being worried, always feeling like we aren't enough, always wondering who they are really thinking about.

Just because our WH/WBF is showing us all the right things doesn't mean it's how they feel in their head and heart.

In the end, is R just something we settle for because we lower our standards so we don't have to lose the person we love, and start over? But didn't we lose that person already? And why do we want someone who decided we weren't worth keepin their pants zipped tight for?

I'm sorry for sounding bitter. I'm actually not at all. Just questioning so much these days. I'm so happy for those who can R successfully. I'd love some advice or insight from them....

libertyrocks posted 8/19/2013 16:12 PM

I concur.

cuppacoffee posted 8/19/2013 16:16 PM

Honestly I feel that by R I'm raising my standards.

I'm not going to sit back and accept the crap he had thrown at me. I'm demanding a better relationship than we had before. I'm demanding that he step it up.

Before I was letting him slide because we had been together for so long. I knew he was going through some tough stuff but I never thought he was having an actual A.

Now he has no excuse to be an asshole. He needs to be a better man.

If I left him he'd never try to be a better man. He's lazy like that.

nowiknow23 posted 8/19/2013 16:17 PM

I respectfully disagree, and I was in the D line from day one.

I think R with a truly remorseful and committed WS isn't settling by any definition. When both partners are working together to tear down the ruins and build a strong, authentic, and healthy marriage? Wow - it's something to behold. I wouldn't call that settling at all.

If you haven't already, check out the Reconciliation forum and look for the successful R thread. Amazing stories there.

Rebreather posted 8/19/2013 16:19 PM

I do not believe I have settled in the least. I set the bar Olympic height, and while he failed to get over it a few times, eventually he did.

The way I look at it is this. Life is hard. People are themselves. Meaning, what their own personal drivers, flaws, challenges, etc are, do not relate to me. His affair was about HIM. His personal path of self destruction. Did it take me down, too? Sure. But, there are no guarantees given that he wouldn't die young, or lose a limb, or become a drug addict or cheat on me. Life throws you curve balls. I don't think this one is all that insurmountable. Sure, it is one of the hardest things I have ever done and I had to recreate myself from the ground up.

But what works for me, his is intense and continued commitment to rebuilding. Himself. Us. Our family. My desire to keep working at it came from watching him get better and better. I really, really wanted to bail many times over. Go off and be alone. Just live my own life and raise my kids. But he just keep plugging away, being consistent, overcoming hurdles, beating my tests. I can sure as hell take care of myself and don't need him for that. I choose to have him.

For many, reconciling simply cannot be done. And there is nothing wrong with that. If I felt like I was settling for less than, I would never do it.

catlover50 posted 8/19/2013 16:32 PM

I agree with cuppa, nik, and rebreather.

If its not a deal breaker for you and your WS is able to do the hard work and keep after it day by day then R can be empowering. Loving your S enough to support them as they grow and change and not condemning them forever. Loving yourself enough to demand what you think it will take to create the M you both deserve.

People are flawed, life is long. I'm sure hoping we are headed somewhere great together. Feels like it today!!

StillGoing posted 8/19/2013 16:35 PM

Well IMO, R is about the person, not the relationship. I mean, yeah I want a good relationship but I thought it sounded better than saying it's about that than about the fucking. Which I also want. But you can get that anywhere. If you decide you want it with that person, that's the only place you can have it.

So, I dunno. My wife isn't any less than any woman here. Not just because she has girl parts or laughs at my jokes or has a history. She's herself. I still like her, love her, and if we can have a healthy relationship (and fucking) I want that too. If not, then I can go watch cartoons and become a monk or something. At higher levels monks get to do cool shit anyway. Is there someone out there better? I guess, but there's sure as hell a lot of guys out there better than me, I try not to worry about that. At least not until I have my kill plan set up per B444.

krazy8516 posted 8/19/2013 16:50 PM

I'm not going to sit back and accept the crap he had thrown at me. I'm demanding a better relationship than we had before. I'm demanding that he step it up.


And... I can't be sure I will ever trust another man as long as I live. My H, for giving me reason not to, and every other guy on Earth because I have lost faith. I would rather R and accept my H and all of his flaws because I'm in love with him, than risk this crap all over again with somebody else.

For me, settling would have been walking out the door on Day 1. I'm fighting for this. It's harder, IMO. But hopefully worth it...

5454real posted 8/19/2013 17:23 PM

Fifth time for me. 5 different women. First time trying R.

18 months since D day. Probably 10 true months of R. Personally, I have set the bar WAY higher than I would be able to with someone I didn't have this terrible legacy with. Either the M we end up with is something far better than I could have imagined at the outset, or I'm done. There will be no *settling*.

It's working. I like it a lot better than before. Rather than *the ball and chain* marriage we had before, we have created a mutually uplifting supporting environment.

In no way will I *settle*.

MediumRare posted 8/19/2013 17:55 PM

In my early 20's, my fiance cheated on me and got pregnant from OM. I dumped her like a bad habit and never looked back.

Over the years, I question if I did the right thing. It pans out that she had a plethora of FOO issues (abuse, alcoholism, molestation from both her father and older brother, etc. etc.) and her wayward tendencies were absolutely a product of such damages, but I was much too young, dumb and inexperienced then but in the end, it seems I abandoned her like just about everyone else in her life (i.e. she's single with two kids now, addict, etc. etc.).

I had pretty normal relationships between that point and when I met my now WS. And while I saw a few examples of unusual behavior from my WS of 8 years, I chose to suck it up and work through them instead of bailing at the first sign of trouble.

I don't think that trying to R is settling for less. I think it's settling on the notion that bad things happen to good people. My WS's wayward behaviors are absolutely a product of her FOO issues, as well as abusive relationships in her past. And while I cannot and will not change her, I will let her know that I will be here to support her IF and ONLY IF she wants to change those things herself.

It would be so much easier to just cut and run. I'd have her gone in a matter of days and my life would resume shortly thereafter. But no, I think the "gift" of R is the right choice, albeit the harder, more difficult choice. It's stating that I have the patience and understanding to stand by someone provided they are willing to show me they are going to fix this and find it unacceptable.

We are only settling for less if our WS's continue to cheat or have EA/PA's. If they are doing the hard work, self-exploration, betterment and investing in changing this aspect of themselves, we're not settling for less. We're investing in a better, more solid relationship.

Ostrich80 posted 8/19/2013 18:22 PM

I suppose it would be settling if nothing changed, but I know R is possible and couples can crawl out stronger than before...unfortunately not in my sich

MoreWould posted 8/19/2013 18:23 PM

If anyone says that the best life of all is to sail the sea, and then adds that I must not sail upon a sea where shipwrecks are a common occurrence and there are often sudden storms that sweep the helmsman in an adverse direction, I conclude that this man, although he lauds navigation, really forbids me to launch my ship.

Lucius Annaeus Seneca

sisoon posted 8/19/2013 19:00 PM

No, for all the reasons listed above.

I encourage you to see that you really can say 'no' to R. IME, that made it a lot easier to say 'yes' to R when I realized that's what I really wanted.

TrulySad, You're at a point where you are forced to make choices you never wanted to make. That's the bad news. The good news is that deciding to D, or to R or to work on your M for now with no LT commitment are all choices that you can make and hold your head high.

Focus on what's best for you - that's the choice to make.

PhantomLimb posted 8/19/2013 19:41 PM

I think R with a truly remorseful and committed WS isn't settling by any definition. When both partners are working together to tear down the ruins and build a strong, authentic, and healthy marriage? Wow - it's something to behold. I wouldn't call that settling at all.

I assumed on DDay that this is why my WS would want to do. I actually started excitedly talking about how close we were going to be once we worked through this together. But it wasn't in the cards.

Had WS been willing to do the work, I would have loved the chance to try to R and build something stronger. I have the feeling that I'm always going to wonder if I walked away too quickly on DDay2. I won't get too into it now, but he has MAJOR FOO issues and it's pretty clear that he did this to make sure he abandoned me first. I have the strength in me to help him through that (and I told him so), but he refused to believe me.

It's a waste all around. But I had to do what was necessary to protect myself and not let myself be emotionally abused.

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 7:41 PM, August 19th (Monday)]

rachelc posted 8/19/2013 20:19 PM

Is he remorseful now. pretty much, yes.
Is it too late? Still to be determined. I'm not at a place yet where I can decide this, Although I feel I'm close.
I understand and forgive one affair. I cannot see my way through to forgive two.
Do I feel I'm settling right now, yes. Too much hurt and pain inflicted.
Maybe I'll feel differently soon. I hope so.
I believe those with one time incidences and instant remorse, maybe even a confession fair better.
I have more to recover from. I'm trying as hard as I can. If I do walk away it will be with no regrets. That's not settling...

I so understand what you're posting about!!

tushnurse posted 8/19/2013 20:51 PM

I totally did not settle. I wanted R I had made that decision long before I had proof. I knew he had it in him to heal himself. It took a few tries to get it started right. But when he did he really really did!
We are so much better. So much stronger. So much happier. We really did it. We came to a new higher level of relationship, love, understanding, and family.

I thank God daily that my H finally got it. Of course it took me tolerating a lot of shit and finally getting strong enough to draw my own line in the sand and sticking to it. In its own twisted way his cheating made me nd him and us so much stronger, better.

So no I didn't settle. I demanded more better. I got it too!

TrulySad posted 8/19/2013 20:51 PM

Thank you everyone for your insight and replys. It helps to know I'm not alone in thinking this way, with some....and to hear how some of you are able to view R in a positive way. I think when you've tried R with three different people, it becomes discouraging and you start to lose hope.

I WANT to hear the positive. My WBF is actually doing so much right. I am terrified at the thought of all I'm also doing and have been through....and it could end the same way it did in my past.

Thank you for giving those of us who desperately need hope, some positive advice...

dindy posted 8/20/2013 03:18 AM

Only after false R did I think what you are questioning. I knew then that xWS did think much less of me and our family unit than he did about the OW. Until then I truly believed that we could both work hard to have the best relationship ever.

Sadly, he was not willing to do the work necessary and dig deep to fix himself.

Even though he sees his children on weekends, I know we are better off separated as he is no longer the person who can teach my children with me what commitment and loyalty in a relationship are about.

I know that our relationship had been difficult since becoming parents but there is no excuse for what he did and I dont know if I can ever forgive that behaviour. For me relationships are about accepting the other person, warts and all, and not running away when the going gets tough.

I am confident that one day I will meet someone who can love me 100% and treat me accordingly.

Sending you strength.

AppleBlossom posted 8/20/2013 03:29 AM

I only agreed to R if we had "more" than we did before, and to be honest, our relationship is better than it ever was in terms of our closeness, our honesty and our openness. For me it was more about transparency of "self" more than transparency of whereabouts, phones, passwords etc. My ExWF entered into intensive counselling and addressed issues arising out of his being sexually abused, and we addressed a lot of barriers between us.

Our relationship is still flawed, but in a human way, because we are both flawed - as we all are. Only this time, we are mature enough to admit it and work through it together.

Please dont think for one moment I discount the pain of the infidelity, or the anger and the disappointment. But we move through that and past that and each time we learn more about each other and ourselves and I can honestly say I love him and understand him far more than I did the day before I found out about his infidelity.

sunflowergirl30 posted 8/20/2013 09:10 AM

Good question...

I do feel in my opinion.
not judging anyone else! that for me! I have settled for less by staying with my wh after he cheated.

He held/holds me to a certain standard but not himself.

If I was my friend and not me. Id look at myself and think I was a fool for not leaving on my 2nd dday let alone the fact I have now lost count of subsequent ddays.

To the members on here who say to me:

- leave
- leave
- leave

It sucks

When is enough, enough? From the first realization of infidelity to the last...

I dont know. Well, actually i do know. If I was financially secure I would have left my wh 5 yrs ago.

Sad but im to the point I almost dont care if I end up living in a cardboard box. My daughters dont deserve that! Not saying i do but somedays id rather wake up to that then my wh face. He is my biggest trigger.

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