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The good & the bad

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MJane posted 9/16/2013 03:30 AM

I've been awake a lot these last nights and one thought that went through my head at around 4 this morning was actually how schizophrenic this man I married has been. He has done the unthinkable and the unbearable but one of the reasons I have had a hard time walking out immediately is the lingering thought that he was a man capable of great kindness before this cruelty. This is the same man that nursed the very broken me through three painful miscarriages and the long road of tests, taking time out from work to be with me at different stages, the same man who travelled with me to sit at my aunt's bed as she lay very ill for the best part of three weeks (that was our summer vacation - sitting in a hospital). Do others struggle to understand how their partner can be both things - this very good kind person and also someone who was an unfeeling, selfish idiot? My biggest thought at the moment is which one is he really and how can I trust I get the "good" one if I stay and not the bad...

AFrayedKnot posted 9/16/2013 04:05 AM

Oh yes, I can definitely relate. That confusion and contradiction ran the whole length of our relationship.

I could see the loving caring compassionate side in her. Not just for me but for others. Then there would be another let down. It was crazy making.

It did help me come to the realization that she was a good person but she was broken. She wanted to be that good person but FOO and addiction issues kept pushing her to act against her true will. I started realizing she was just as tortured by this as I was.

I knew that if she just got the help that she needed to address her brokenness she could get better.

For us I believe Dday was that breaking point where she honestly and truly sought that help.

I hope your H sees the contradictions too and seeks the help to free him from his brokenness.

Heartbroken2013 posted 9/16/2013 04:15 AM

Yes, i can relate to this too.

H and i went thru 4 x ivf treatments and he nursed me through a heart breaking miscarriage on ivf x 3. He is a loving, kind, caring man. he took on my 2 children from a previous marriage and has been a wonderful father to them as their own didn't want to know!

To the outside world this man is a perfect catch, all my friends will comment on how lucky i am etc etc ...

Little do the know this man!

Little did i know this man!

But ...

He fell, he made a mistake, he is truly sorry for this and i believe him. Your H has to earn back his trust with you, it will take time. We are 10mths after DD and are getting better as the days go on.

My advise is to keep talking, if your hurting, tell him. Tell him how u feel, be honest and open about everything. I have found that me and my H are more open about things now, and i know we will make it.

WIgirl posted 9/16/2013 05:31 AM

Yes, I am really struggling with this as well. Everyone who knows about the affair (albeit the list is pretty short)is so surprised that my H would do this. He was always that perfect guy. Did everything right. But depression/PTSD caught up with him and he made a really, really bad choice. I still don't know where things will go between us because I don't know if he will be that guy again.

MJane posted 9/16/2013 06:03 AM

WIGirl - same reaction from the three people who know about the A in our's like they still can't process it. Like my close friend said "if I can hardly believe what must it be like for you....". What really hurts in our case is we had come through such a tough struggle (losses, lots of depression and crying) and were on the up-side with the little guy just about to be born...I just can't fathom the gets me every time crying.

RRosemary posted 9/16/2013 11:00 AM

I'm doing a lot of that late-night thinking myself, and I'm thinking the same sort of thing; how could the man I knew do this? The worst part is, now I feel like all my good memories are lies, you know? Like everything we did in the past is now tainted... that great day we went fossil hunting, well, turns out he told her all about it later on. That band we were listening to - he sent her a message asking if she'd ever heard them. 25 years, one big lie.
Sorry, not being very supportive of you - just wanted you to know you're not alone.

DLP50 posted 9/16/2013 13:30 PM

I'm with you also..... he can be the most caring, giving man and then at the drop of a hat, be secretive and lying thru his teeth.
I just don't understand either.

I'm sorry you are here with the rest of us..

Skan posted 9/16/2013 14:32 PM

My WFH nursed me through Stage II Lyme Disease, where I literally lost my mind my short-term memory was only about 30 seconds long and he came home many times to find me crying on the stairs, having forgotten why I was on them and having stayed on them all day long. He used to fear that he would come home to find my dead body because I truly didn't want to live, if living meant living like that. He helped me convalesce, we moved to my home state/city, and he encouraged me to do anything that I felt I could do. He was my strongest supporter and I, who swore that I would never love "too much" again, threw away my inhibitions and loved him dearly.

This was the man that abandoned me to porn, online sex chats, and finally a ONS. There are only 4 people who know my sister, his eldest sister, and two very dear friends of ours on the East Coast. None of them could process it I had to almost convince them.

And now that loving person is back. It' almost like a resurrection. And my wary heart is opening again. But it will never be the same. I know now, that I can walk away, and if I did walk away, I would be just fine. Maybe it's that knowledge that has given me the freedom and the courage to risk again. I don't really know.

Hope2B posted 9/16/2013 15:04 PM

Gosh, all I can say, and this is NOT a defense for him, is that schizophrenia --if he does have this disorder--can really affect the perception he has of things.

I'm not saying that schizophrenic people don't know right from wrong--they do--but it's that their brain is chemically wired differently than others, and this is often baffling to others.

Many people with this disorder find help with medication. Sometimes, the first medication given might need to be adjusted, or it might need to be changed to a different medication, to keep the person more "even."

I'm NOT a psychologist or psychiatrist but these are my thoughts based on what I know of this disorder.

Apologies if I misread and misinterpreted your comment about schizophrenia.

MJane posted 9/17/2013 03:18 AM

I hear you Skan - this was the man I always saw myself old on a bench with or walking in the crazily cold November beach (our favorite holidays have always been out of season windy coastal towns). In just 2 weeks (today!) I realize that might not be the case - am not yet ruling it out but for the first time it is a real possibility that I am on my own or with someone else and that blows my mind a little. Hope - luckily (or unluckily as it might make the action at least understandable....) my H has no formal mental condition - he just managed to live two separate lives for 19 months....I struggle with the question of whether, on the turn of a coin, this current remorseful once again attentive man would be as hurtful and cruel. From reading posts here I guess you can never tell....and the part of me that has been hurt enough already thinks cutting and running would be the smartest option even if I know I still feel love for this man (and that I feel that knowing what I know shocks me to the core....)

stronger08 posted 9/17/2013 04:01 AM

Its truly a sociopathic mentality. Like serial killers they can appear to be the best people walking the earth. But when their dark needs get the best of them, its off on the hunt they go.

cliffside posted 9/17/2013 10:40 AM

He needs to get into IC and figure out why he did this. Usually it's poor coping mechanisms. We were in the process of getting our son diagnosed with Autism. What we were going through the week his A started is horrifying (worst week of my life, besides D-Day) and the fact that he lied to me, walked out the door and hooked up with another woman still leaves me dumbfounded. He totally compartmentalized his 2 yr A. We were one life and she was another part of his life. He's in IC now and a whole shit storm of childhood abuse has come out. He's doing the work to change. You may be able to grow old with him, but he is going to have to go into IC and figure himself out. Hugs to you.

hopingforhappy posted 9/17/2013 12:54 PM

I agree with cliffside. It is a long and arduous process to figure out what is going on. My FWH has been in IC for the entire 3 1/2 years since I discovered his A and he really is just now getting to the point that he has sorted out his own emotions enough to effectively deal with mine. I feel like we are in a great place now, but it has taken a lot of time, patience and hard work. You both need to be willing to fight the good fight.

The truth is he is not all good or all bad--he is some of both. You get the good one if he is willing to do the work to keep the bad at bay. There are no guarantees for any of us. I am fully aware that my FWH could go off the deep end again. But I know now that I am strong and can handle it if he does. That is where my IC has been so important. Hope you are seeking IC for yourself.

RyeBread posted 9/17/2013 13:26 PM

People are very dynamic. We all have different sides to ourselves. I believe it comes down to being authentic, being honest, and accepting or being accepted for that.

Often times I wonder if the A is a symptom of an internal struggle between who they think they are, who they want to appear as, and who they really are.

[This message edited by RyeBread at 1:27 PM, September 17th (Tuesday)]

damaged71 posted 9/18/2013 07:29 AM

If he has a condition it's probably referred to as "asshole" in the professional community.

My wife went from being quite simply the warmest most wonderful person I had ever met to being a MONSTER. She literally took delight in my pain. Seriously...LITERALLY. When I would be just crushed she would laugh. She would actually laugh.

This was the same woman I went through IVF with 3 times and all that goes along with that. Nope it didn't work.

Now she is back to being Miss Wonderful and really can't explain where the monster came from.

catlover50 posted 9/18/2013 12:47 PM

Yeah, people are complicated. None of us are all good or all bad. Lots of people find themselves behaving in ways they are ashamed of at certain points in their lives. The true test of character is how they fix it and fix themselves moving forward.

I suspect a lot of BS react like I do to a news story like one we saw recently on 60 minutes. A professional baseball pitcher was profiled and was telling the story of his CSA and how it had affected him. One way was that he cheated on his wife. He was very remorseful, was in therapy and speaking out to help others. His M was thriving. My H actually was watching the story and called up to me to turn it on. We both watched with tears in our eyes. The point is I admired him. Did not think he was a "bad" man. It seems we can be very forgiving and understanding of other's weaknesses. Well, our WSs are just as broken, just as weak. They too, providing they are working their asses off, deserve a second chance, if their BS is willing to go down that path with them ( no judgement to those for whom it's a deal breaker). Few people should be written off as completely bad.

standinghere posted 9/20/2013 02:51 AM

Do others struggle to understand how their partner can be both things...

Did I ever.

My wife was one of the kindest, most genuinely caring, warm and compassionate person that I'd ever met. Certainly more so than I am. She never wanted to see anyone be hurt, child or adult. I absolutely loved this about her.

But when she had the affair, she was just awful to me. I'd never seen her treat anyone, even people who deserved it, like she treated me. Nor have I seen anyone treated like that since.

I understand it now, all her suppressed rage came out that summer, and came out on me. It wasn't my fault, I just was there.

MJane posted 9/20/2013 06:47 AM

Standinghere, your words (or wife's words) mirror something my H said yesterday. I struggle to understand how he could be so detached and cold in relation to me (see me breastfeeding his newborn & head off to OW for sex) - in recent months he had told me wasn't sure he "loved me enough" and we had so many long talks about that (it was very painful to hear those words) and at no time did he mention OW. he said the best way he can explain it is that he shut down his feelings for me as he couldn't cope with guilt and the complicated situation he'd created. I also think he was telling himself our marriage pre OW was something it wasn't & had made me into something I wasn't....there may very well be suppressed anger (we're at early days and he needs to get IC) - I'm still contemplating R as I am starting to see the man who has been MIA for so many months again. I just don't know if he is capable of being that other self-interested, callous person again and that is what scares me.

Skan posted 9/20/2013 13:48 PM

I'm going to second and third IC for a WS. My FWHs IC, our MC, and FWHs willingness to confront his brokenness is, I am convinced, why we are still here. We could not have gotten to here without all of the help that we had. It never would have been possible. And thank God for this site as well. I've done as much healing here as I've done in IC.

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