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Newest Member: HelloRain (46007)

User Topic: when I feel hurt, he gets frustrated
hpv50
♀ 39703
Member # 39703
Default  Posted: 9:35 PM, September 2nd (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I usually have 3-4 good days, and then something triggers a reminder that my H had been trying to have affairs, and I feel hurt and upset.

H has told me its ok to tell him when this happens, and I've repeatedly told him that it's helpful if, when I'm down, he reassures me and tells me he's sorry, etc.

But each time that I tell him I feel hurt about what he did (quietly, in a nonconfrontational way), he either checks out (his eyes glaze over, and he barely says anything), or worse, he acts angry and/or frustrated. When I ask him what he's thinking, it's either "when is this going to end," or if he seems angry, it's "I wasn't interested in other women, YOU weren't interested in ME." (turns it around.

Our new MC told H that he shouldn't check out, that he should try to "feel my pain," and that it would help me heal. He also said that H should talk to his IC, as this checking out was likely some childhood issue related trait.

But H still just checked out today when I felt down. He also rarely apologized for what he did, and clearly just wishes I would move on.

Does anyone else have this experience? Are some guys just unable to be remorseful, and/or have some childhood issue or trait that makes them lack empathy for their spouse?


Me: BS - 50; Him: WH - 51, vulnerable NPD
married 19 years, 3 kids
DD1 4/22/13 (hpv diagnosis)
DD2 5/9/13; DD3 6/30/13
DD4 7/7/13 admits "trying to date other women" for 3 years

Posts: 224 | Registered: Jun 2013 | From: DC area
LosferWords
♂ 30369
Member # 30369
Default  Posted: 10:24 PM, September 2nd (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I don't really think this is a gender related issue. I think your MC is quite possibly onto something with the checking out being a childhood issues. A lot issues that people have in their adult lives tend to stem from their FOO (Family Of Origin). Behaviors like these tend to be "familiar" in a sense that we learn them from our family.

I think working on empathy with his IC and examining potential FOO issues is a great idea.

Best of luck to you.


Posts: 8228 | Registered: Dec 2010
Girlietoo
♀ 38719
Member # 38719
Default  Posted: 10:30 PM, September 2nd (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My WH does this too- it hurts. He tells me, and I believe, that my sadness triggers his guilt and shame. Our MC says, and again I believe him, that it is very natural for humans to run from pain.

Of course, that doesn't make it ok but I do believe that it is a natural part of the human condition. In fact, my WH just became frustrated with me for this very thing a few moments ago.

It is very difficult not to get angry in return, mostly I just feel defeated. At any rate, I plan to discuss it during our upcoming therapy session.

[This message edited by Girlietoo at 10:33 PM, September 2nd (Monday)]


Me- 40
Him- 47
March 9, 2013- the day my heart died

Posts: 251 | Registered: Mar 2013 | From: Canada
RedRose
♀ 39584
Member # 39584
Default  Posted: 8:23 AM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I don't have any advice, but wanted to let you know that you aren't alone! My WH also seems to get frustrated, feeling like I am focusing on the past rather than looking towards the future, but I am just not there yet. The affair lasted for more than two years, and I think expecting a BS to stop focusing on the A after a month or two is unreasonable.


BW-35
WH - 35
2.5 year LTA

Posts: 160 | Registered: Jun 2013
Undone1
♀ 37683
Member # 37683
Default  Posted: 8:46 AM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It seems that this is a very normal pattern. As BS's we have catching up to do. We were caught unaware of the A and now have to spend time not just healing but making sense of our past, our present and our future. It's enormous. When I am having difficulty, I simply say "I am struggling and need some re-assurance."

It seems that your WH is not able to show you compassion. This need for reassurance and remorse is not going to stop for awhile, so he is going to need to develop a plan for meeting this need. Compassion is an important quality for all of us to have and perhaps something that needs to be addressed in his individual work.


Undone1
Married 10+ years to my high school sweetheart
DDAY 10/27/12
Me 55
WH 55
Blended Family: 25, 21, and 20
Married 10 years
"The Universe Unfolds as it Should"

Posts: 301 | Registered: Dec 2012 | From: Missouri
Tesseract
♂ 39624
Member # 39624
Default  Posted: 9:18 AM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I have/had the same problem as your WS. When my BS gets frustrated or presents anything other than her typical positive demeanor I can become sullen or frustrated. As if her emotions aren't completely justified. If anything, I should be thankful that she's even willing to show me that she's upset.

It's a betrayal of her trust when, instead of helping her with her pain with compassion and love, I make it about me and how her pain makes me feel. It's wrong on so many levels, and yet another betrayal. I did it again this past weekend and I'm horrified at my behavior. I hope I can find more time to read this week so I can avoid this in the future. It's remarkably easy to get wrapped up in our own heads and our own pain when the best way to heal both of our pain is to reach out.


Posts: 55 | Registered: Jun 2013
nekorb
♀ 40306
Member # 40306
Default  Posted: 9:26 AM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I experience the same thing.


Me: BS 44; Him: WH 47 aka CAT- colossal asshat; Married 22 years
D-day: July 17, 2013, with TT to follow
D filed July 16, 2014, 363 days later than I should have
Psalms 27:14
Wait for The Lord; be strong and take heart. Wait for the Lord.

Posts: 1838 | Registered: Aug 2013
rachelc
♀ 30314
Member # 30314
Default  Posted: 9:50 AM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Have your spouses done any reading? Or posting here? As a WS I understand that being there and listening to my spouse's hurt is my job, for the rest of my life. This isn't a one shot deal. Recovery is long and arduous. Helping my spouse through it is the least I can do.


his Dday: 2/10 but TT until 7/11
my Ddays: 1/12, 4/12 broken NC 12/12

me (WW/BS): 48
him: (BS/WH)52
4 kiddos in mid 20's

“Follow your intuition. Be smart, be brave. Tell the truth and don’t take any shit.”


Posts: 5735 | Registered: Dec 2010 | From: Midwest
Reality
♀ 39077
Member # 39077
Default  Posted: 11:43 AM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hi, Rachel. Yep, I'm Tesseract's BW. I've posted fairly extensively.

We had a crummy weekend.

(((HPV50))) I'm so sorry. I don't have any answers. It's a terribly hard thing to do everything you can think of to communicate and express your emotions and then get punished for it.

I think there is something very seriously on point about not learning how to be empathetic as a child and how that continues to affect perspective from that point on. For all the world, the WHs getting "frustrated" and "disconnected" when we express pain looks like a tantrum that they aren't getting what they want when they want it.

In our case, the situation gets so extreme, even with all the people around him - not just me - responding negatively to WHs choices, he will still hold to his interpretation and stance. There's no magic combination of words or showing emotion that will reach him.

[This message edited by Reality at 11:45 AM, September 3rd (Tuesday)]


Posts: 292 | Registered: Apr 2013
RavenLocks
♀ 40396
Member # 40396
Default  Posted: 2:34 PM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I also experience this from my WH. I often feel like I have to hide my emotions when I'm going through a bad day because I don't have the energy to also take on a possible fight if I bring it up that I didn't like his frustrated reaction. Round and round we go...


BS:34
H:34
MARRIED:7 YEARS
SON: 11 MONTHS
DDAY1: 03/2006
DDAY2: 05/2013

Posts: 15 | Registered: Aug 2013
Simple
♀ 18814
Member # 18814
Default  Posted: 2:44 PM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

5 year R here.

Please don't hide your triggers. Ever. Show to your spouses how bad it truly is. When my husband did this to me, I told him that this is a long process that will take years. Just as it took him years to realize that what he's doing is wrong, it will take me even longer to "get over it". I also told him that he's either part of this R or he's not. If he's not then I'd rather know now and start putting up walls to protect myself and stop coming to him for triggers.

If we BS start hiding our triggers, that will only reinforce that there is no consequences for the WS infidelity. A true R doesn't shy away from triggers. A WS has a lot to deal with too but their priority MUST be YOU. If it's not, then it's not R, I'm sorry to say. Then you need to start building up walls and go a different direction.


Love is a choice.

True love is harder to come by than soul mates. True love requires work.

Ignorance can be cured with knowledge. There is no cure for being an idiot.


Posts: 927 | Registered: Mar 2008
Reality
♀ 39077
Member # 39077
Default  Posted: 4:03 PM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Well said, Simple. Really, really well said. Thank you.

Posts: 292 | Registered: Apr 2013
TxsT
♀ 39996
Member # 39996
Default  Posted: 4:30 PM, September 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage


I feel very very much in tune with Simple. Your spouse needs to see the depths of your pain because without this they have no true gage as to how truly horrible their behaviour has been. Our MC also told me that it is his responsibility, if he likes it or not, to own my pain and help me deal with it. Triggers are there because of them. They need to own that and understand that. My way of making sure that happens is not only to tell my H when I am triggering but to tell him how my trigger is making me feel. Ie....his cell phone.....makes me feel unsafe, unsure, panicked. Once he knew it wasn't his actions with the phone but just the phone itself he relaxed and started working on how to make the phone safer for me. Once your H and you understand that a trigger is something outside of what you are currently experiencing you might be able to deal with them more openly and honestly.

But I also have to say that, at some point in time, when a BS is healthier and able to show more empathy (and also depending on the circumstances of the A) a BS must slowly look at the WS's pain as well. If they truly want to R it is about BOTH OF YOU figuring out what went wrong first, in your marriage, and then second with the Why's of the A. For a BS to think it is about just them for ever after an A is wrong. You can't build R with this sort of thinking. Yes, in the beginning it is about us, the BS and the destruction caused by our spouses selfish behaviour. But at a year I am now thankfully able to step back and realize, in MY case, my RH has a great deal of self shame and depression and I would be an evil person if I didn't not at least acknowledge this and try to help him through this. That's what R is about. Each of you have to take turns at being the rock in the R. It is now my turn to be the Rock and I am more then happy to do so. I do not want to live the rest of my life in hatred, mad, bitter, unhappy.

For now I agree, you need to have his help and see that he understands all of the pain and hurt he has caused. H owes you that. But if he holds true to his new path, you both figure out where your original marriage was failing and you both feel like moving to R, you will have to acknowledge at some point he is hurting too. You might start by saying now....." I know you have shame and pain from this but right now I can't feel beyond my own destroyed world. Before I can acknowledge yours I need for you and I to deal with mine."


Me: BS 50
Hubby: WH 53
Together: 32 years
Married: 25 years 09/10/2013
2 boys: 23&21
Dday: 09/11/2012
A length: 4+ years (yes years)
status: Ongoing Reconciliation :o)

Through thick and thin we will survive but he gets only one shot at it!


Posts: 605 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: CDN
hpv50
♀ 39703
Member # 39703
Default  Posted: 4:12 PM, September 5th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks for all the advice.

My WH's trouble empathizing with me about his behavior is puzzling because my WH has no trouble showing empathy toward our kids, or even toward me, IF he isn't the cause. My IC thinks he may have childhood shame/blame issues.

But it's really hard on me. Lately instead of telling him, I just go off to cry in the basement. That way only one of us gets upset. But our MC suggests that WH should continue to try empathizing as his "homework" for this week.

Also, my WH says that sometimes when I'm down, I ask "too many" questions, or talk "too much," and he gets frustrated with that, rather than really lacking empathy about my pain. He says I should just say I feel hurt, and leave it at that.

But how can you really get reassurance if you don't say why? As in, I feel hurt because the OW was beautiful, or I feel hurt because WH blew off my 50th birthday, etc.


Me: BS - 50; Him: WH - 51, vulnerable NPD
married 19 years, 3 kids
DD1 4/22/13 (hpv diagnosis)
DD2 5/9/13; DD3 6/30/13
DD4 7/7/13 admits "trying to date other women" for 3 years

Posts: 224 | Registered: Jun 2013 | From: DC area
TheAgonyOfIt
♀ 39114
Member # 39114
Default  Posted: 11:52 PM, December 3rd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Bumping.

Great thread for bewildering empathetically challenged situations.


Me BS 49, ExWS: narcissist! Jekyll Hyde. Left in secret early July, moved states. Left home, job, whole life behind and difficult** adjusting. Dog injured and too much to handle. Supremely bummed out.

Posts: 554 | Registered: Apr 2013 | From: theagonyofit
Holly-Isis
♀ 13447
Member # 13447
Default  Posted: 6:29 AM, December 4th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage


My WH's trouble empathizing with me about his behavior is puzzling because my WH has no trouble showing empathy toward our kids, or even toward me, IF he isn't the cause. My IC thinks he may have childhood shame/blame issues.


IME MrH acted like that when he didn't own his choices.

Personally I think you're still being TT and he's trying to distance you from sharing...thus analyzing the As. Could it be FOO issues? To some extent, yes. But coupled with what brought you here and the fact that empathy is something he does possess, I think it's a way to shut you up so he doesn't have to own his actions.


"Being in love" first moved them to promise fidelity: this quieter love enables them to keep the promise. *CS Lewis*

Posts: 11334 | Registered: Jan 2007 | From: Just a fool in limbo
brokensmile322
♀ 35758
Member # 35758
Default  Posted: 7:18 AM, December 4th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

hpv50,

((Hugs)))

Gently,

Your WH is not remorseful. He may be regretful, but he is not remorseful, at all.

Since he can show empathy at times and he is not now, I don't buy the FOO issue crap. We all have FOO issues.

I do believe he could feel shame. Lots of WS's talk about how the shame is very debilitating. However, the shame is not an excuse. Is he in IC to deal with his shame?

Has he read, "How to help your spouse heal from your affair"? Have you? That would be a starting point.

I would suggest turning off the sound when dealing with your WH. Watch his actions.

Telling you that you can tell him any time you trigger, but then going 'blank' and getting mad when you do are polar opposite of each other.

Turn off that he is telling you to talk to him at any time. (sound)

Watch that he goes blank and gets angry. (actions)

His actions are not showing R behavior. Period.

You should not be in the basement hiding your pain. I am so sorry you are dealing with this.



Me BS 42 Him WS 44
OW Coworker DDay April 7, 2012
EA on a slippery slope...

When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves. ~Viktor Frankl

"When you are happy, you can forgive a great deal."


Posts: 1607 | Registered: Jun 2012
bionicgal
♀ 39803
Member # 39803
Default  Posted: 8:13 AM, December 4th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hold on, I think it is overstepping to presume that hpv's spouse isn't remorseful. . . especially given all the replies to the thread that echo what she is saying. Are all those WS not remorseful? Is mine not, because he gets frustrated or withdraws on occasion, particularly when under stress?

It is a tricky situation, because even the most remorseful and empathetic spouse will struggle with being confronted, out of the blue sometimes, with the most shameful and terrible thing they ever did. And sometimes it must feel like being a non-stop penance machine to deal with it all the time. And if they love their spouse, and are truly remorseful, it hurts to see them in pain, and know they caused it. Often times I know my H feels quite helpless. They would have to be some kind of emotional and psychological superhero to always react completely appropriately. And lets face it, if they were an emotional and psychological superhero, they likely wouldn't have been in an affair.

That doesn't mean that learning to deal with it isn't the goal, and learning how to best support each other isn't the goal, but just because they get defensive or withdraw doesn't mean that they aren't remorseful.


me - BS (45) - DDay - June 2013
A was 2+ months, EA/PA
In MC & Reconciling
"Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point to move forward." -- C.S. Lewis.

Posts: 2241 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: USA
2married2quit
♂ 36555
Member # 36555
Default  Posted: 8:33 AM, December 4th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

What Bionicgal said:

It is a tricky situation, because even the most remorseful and empathetic spouse will struggle with being confronted, out of the blue sometimes, with the most shameful and terrible thing they ever did. And sometimes it must feel like being a non-stop penance machine to deal with it all the time. And if they love their spouse, and are truly remorseful, it hurts to see them in pain, and know they caused it. Often times I know my H feels quite helpless. They would have to be some kind of emotional and psychological superhero to always react completely appropriately. And lets face it, if they were an emotional and psychological superhero, they likely wouldn't have been in an affair.

We just had a falling out last night. This weather is triggering me and the financial circumstances have me on the floor. I told her I hated the fact that she hasn't helped me emotionally recoup....and oh well, she got pissed. I almost feel like I'm walking on egg shells just to keep the marriage going forward.


BS - Me 43 WS - Her 41
DDAY - June 2012 (found the texts)
DDAY2 - Next Day (found out who) EA
TT- till 9/2012 (some PA)
Married 20yrs. 2kids
Status: in careful R. Sometimes spinning our wheels

Posts: 1446 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: USA
brokensmile322
♀ 35758
Member # 35758
Default  Posted: 8:35 AM, December 4th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

t/j @bionicgal

I do not presume to speak for everyone on here who says their WS does this to them…the blank stare etc… I do not know everyone's back story on here.

I have struggled with remorse from my own WH for the past almost two years. I do think that it is very rare when a WS, having been outed, is suddenly remorseful. It does happen, some have posted about it, but more often than not, the WS is in a fog, could be still in the A either physically or still mentally, and they just don't 'get' it.

When I posted to hpv50, I read her back story and then I was referring to her own statement below…

But each time that I tell him I feel hurt about what he did (quietly, in a nonconfrontational way), he either checks out (his eyes glaze over, and he barely says anything), or worse, he acts angry and/or frustrated. When I ask him what he's thinking, it's either "when is this going to end," or if he seems angry, it's "I wasn't interested in other women, YOU weren't interested in ME." (turns it around.

^^This is not remorse. A remorseful spouse does not ask when will this be over or blame the BS for why the A happened. That is exactly what Hpv50 posted. She is NOT to blame and she shouldn't be made to feel like she should hide in the basement when she is upset…especially at 6 mths out.

I think that remorse can be a process for most of the WS here…. I was basically telling her to not hide from this, keep pushing, don't rugsweep it because he is making you feel bad. And I did ask if her WS was in IC because if there is shame or FOO, he will have to deal with it first. His IC could be the catalyst to his reaching true remorse.

And I do believe remorseful WS get frustrated and angry at times. They are human and in this process trying like the rest of us. It wasn't the anger I was addressing alone…. It was the statements he said as well.

Sorry if you think I was referring that everyone's WS was not remorseful when they get angry at times. That was not the intent.

[This message edited by brokensmile322 at 8:38 AM, December 4th (Wednesday)]


Me BS 42 Him WS 44
OW Coworker DDay April 7, 2012
EA on a slippery slope...

When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves. ~Viktor Frankl

"When you are happy, you can forgive a great deal."


Posts: 1607 | Registered: Jun 2012
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