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Advice from BS wanted--heard from ObW again

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cs2384 posted 10/9/2013 08:39 AM

My husband said he got an email from the OBW. Our initial DDay was 2 years ago and the A was over two years ago. It appears as though her husband has been lying to her. Telling her how crazy I am and all the things I did to get to him. Of course it was all me---seems like she's not buying it anymore. She wants any correspondence i have. She is understandably extremely angry at me. I have deleted all the correspondence because I wanted to move on. I have found an old notebook that has a note from him that is quite condemning. I even forgot I had it and had to go digging for it. It's been an emotional day to say the least. I want to bury all this and leave it behind me but I understand that won't help. My focus now is helping those I've hurt.

So my questions. How can I hep my husband through this as it is hard for him too to see this woman's pain? How do I help her in what little way I can? I don't want to cause anymore damage.

Anyone up is welcome to reply

FeelingMN posted 10/9/2013 09:14 AM

I don't think it would be wise to bury any of it in an attempt to leave it behind you. Not for yourself or your BH. Does BH know you still have the notebook? Will that be an issue for him? I think that would be pretty upsetting for me. I'd see it as a sign that you have been holding on to a piece of the A, even unintentionally it would probably be a trigger.

That being said, you have information that OBW is asking for that might help her through her ordeal just as any info you had has helped your BH. I don't think the choice is at all yours to make, it's BH and OBW to decide.

I don't want to cause anymore damage.

Do you mean damage to your BH or OBW's M? In any case, the damage has already been done. This sounds a lot like how TT starts and continues.

I would ask for nothing less that complete honesty and would accept nothing else.

cs2384 posted 10/9/2013 09:22 AM

I don't want to cause anymore damage to either my BH or the OBW and I know withholding information will do that. This was not an attempt to justify hiding. This was an attempt to say I genuinely want to cause no more harm. My husband called and asked if I had ANYTHING to send her. I went through a backpack that I had during the A that I haven't been in in 2 years. I found a notebook I had honestly forgotten about and was sickened at what I read. I know it will be hard for my BH husband. I have no intentions of withholding anything from him. I'm beyond that.

refuz2bavictim posted 10/9/2013 09:46 AM

I have found an old notebook that has a note from him that is quite condemning.

Since he is asking you for any evidence of the A, he is seriously considering her request. I would say give it to him, and trust him to make a good decision about how to help her.

If any of this is new info for your BS, I would be prepared for some major triggering, especially if you deleted the old info without him having any decision in that.

If this does trigger him, be prepared to listen, stay calm and avoid becoming defensive. I would also be patient with his processing time. This is OLD damage resurfacing.

Triggers really set the wheels of the roller coaster back into motion and calm, apologetic reactions can help ease some of the intensity for the BS...though not always. Remember you can't control how he will react, but the fact that you are letting go of control (of the info) and trusting him, is positive and definitely will prevent more damage.

darkbeast posted 10/9/2013 09:47 AM

I want to bury all this and leave it behind me but I understand that won't help. My focus now is helping those I've hurt.

At some point, the OM and his BS are not your problem. Two years out and now she calls your husband for evidence. Right now, today, you and your husband are the only people that you have to help.

If your husband sends the note, I think he should also request NC. They have their problem, you have yours.

"I hope this helps you, sorry you are going through this, we are working on our own marriage, please do not contact us in the future" type of thing.

You can't allow the scab to be continuously ripped off of the wound. It is perfectly fine to want to leave this behind you.

bionicgal posted 10/9/2013 10:05 AM

I have to concur. I'd agree to a conversation, or a one time hand off, but then NC.

cs2384 posted 10/9/2013 10:23 AM

I have to concur. I'd agree to a conversation, or a one time hand off, but then NC.

This is a relief to hear. I was worried I was trying to rugsweep by not wanting to hear from them at all. I want to move forward with my family. And it's hard to do when stuff keeps coming up. I will give the information to my husband. I'm done hiding anything. Hopefully the OBW can find peace in her life and hopefully our families' paths will no longer cross

20WrongsVs1 posted 10/9/2013 10:27 AM

ITA with DarkBeast in how to handle it. Sorry you're going through this, because even though your reason for finding the notebook sounds plausible to me (with my umpteen purses), I worry that BH may momentarily wonder if the notebook is a keepsake you conveniently *forgot* about.

BH and I retained our (xAP and my) email correspondence just in case the day you're experiencing ever comes. Because xAP seems to have sold the same "predatory OW" bill of goods to OBW as your xAP did.

heartbroken2012 posted 10/9/2013 10:30 AM

There isnt anything that you, as the OW, can do to help this woman.

Personally speaking I dont want to hear, see, or talk to the OW or her BH.

Support your BH in any way that he needs.

Kelany posted 10/9/2013 11:39 AM

I would have your BS give her the information if he is comfortable. Then? Tell her NC from this point forward. NC is for ALL parties.

Then reassure the hell our of your BS. This will be a huge trigger for both of you. Lean on each other and just love each other.

heartache101 posted 10/9/2013 13:11 PM

I honestly believe you owe her nothing at 2 years out but if your BS can give her what you have and he goes NC then ok. You do not need to be sucked into his AP life you are done there.
I would schedule a couple nites of alone time with my spouse to just make sure all is ok.

Bikingguy posted 10/9/2013 13:37 PM

As a BS I agree with the others, have your BH provide whatever he choices to OM's BW. Time from D day is not really a factor.

In my situation, OM's BW found out first and had no intension of telling me. Upon my WW telling me, I reached out to verify things and to be honest I desperately needed to talk to someone about this without wanting people to know. She was gracious enough to talk. However after a few conversations I realized NC would not work if we were still in contact as that would provide a window for each of our BSs. Plus we did not want to continue as friends due to this shit storm.

betrayedbyluv posted 10/9/2013 13:37 PM

I would give her all the information she needs. I know when I asked questions (early on) of the OW, her response was "I don't think me giving you information is going to help you heal, anything WH said should be enough for you." This set me off in a huge way because I wanted her version to see how the stories meshed. Honestly I would still like her version but I know that's not happening.

soconfusednow posted 10/9/2013 13:53 PM

I'd see it as a sign that you have been holding on to a piece of the A, even unintentionally it would probably be a trigger.

yeah, the notebook would be a huge problem for me.

My first thought is...if your husband isn't against helping her give her any and all information you have. Then request NC.

But the best solution probably is to discuss it with your H & come up with a plan that will satisfy both of you, before any action is taken.

refuz2bavictim posted 10/9/2013 14:20 PM

I feel that I may be going out on a limb here, and of course this is only my opinion, but here it goes anyway...

I actually think your BS should have the major role in the decision regarding NC with the other BS. While it is my opinion that NC is wise, even between BS's. It might be a good idea to allow him to steer that process.

As Bs's we were afforded zero decision making ability when it came to the A.

I think that allowing/trusting the BS to determine the approach to this, helps lessen the sense of helplessness that comes along with the A aftermath.

Sal1995 posted 10/9/2013 16:22 PM

I think that allowing/trusting the BS to determine the approach to this, helps lessen the sense of helplessness that comes along with the A aftermath.

This is a good point. Regardless, err on the side of the best interests of your husband and your marriage. After 2 years that's completely reasonable. If your BS wants to help the other BS get the info she wants, fine. If he wants nothing to do with those people, that should be respected.

cs2384 posted 10/9/2013 17:33 PM

Talked to my husband. Part of the email was written to me. He printed it up and let me read it. It was gut wrenching. I have to remind myself she's terribly hurt. I couldn't finish reading it though. My husband said it sounds like she's just coming to terms with things he had tried telling her two years ago and she's trying to peace together the last two years of her life and is finalky realizing how much her husband has lied to her. I'm going to write a timeline up for my husband to give her if he thinks she would like it. I gave my husband the notebook. He's been more gracious and kind than I deserve. I'm letting him choose how to respond. I'm in no position to have demands or preferences. Hopefully this will give her some peace.

iwillNOT posted 10/9/2013 19:40 PM

If your BS is ok with it, maybe she could email some specific questions, you could answer together, then NC? The notebook...that would be hard for me...good luck.

RockyMtn posted 10/9/2013 22:09 PM

Yea, I don't know about a one-time hand-off with immediate NC. I'll just share my experience.

The OW's partner (OW was in a long-term, committed same-sex partnership) didn't reach out to me until months after D-Day. And I didn't see that message until months after she sent it. So we didn't connect until well over a year after D-Day. Why didn't I contact her or the OP right away? Because I didn't know up from down, because I was gaslighted, because WH told me I'd be opening a can of crazy. He said all of this to keep me from getting more information. Maybe this is what happened to this BS. Hence, I don't think it is at all a surprise that she waited so long to reach out. 2 years is NOTHING when it comes to recovery from an A, right? That's what we all say here. So why is this woman being held to some standard of time as to when it is appropriate to reach out to the other couple?

When I finally connected with the BS, I asked for any evidence she had. She gave it. Had that been the end, I would've been in a tough spot. I had lots and lots of questions - sometimes even the tiniest bit of evidence raises that kind of thought. I also reached out to the OW at this time. Had she told me - "I can't talk to you, it has been too long and I need to move on" - I would've been livid. I obviously don't sing the OP's praises, and I'm not even sure our conversations were helpful - but I have to give her credit for being willing.

If your BS gives her the notebook and then shuts her off, it might be really hard on her. Harder than not seeing the evidence at all. Pretty much any BS can attest to the swirling, painful thoughts that come with evidence. It just seems kind of cruel to lob it at her and then leave her to her own devices, when the only two people who may be able to answer some stuff is you via your BS.

Now, if he really doesn't want it to go farther than a one-time hand off, that's his choice. But as a "reformed wayard" who wants to end the hurting you've caused, I would actually expect you to advocate for your BS to be open to her questions after the hand-off. Not forever. Boundaries are good. I just don't think immediate NC is fair if she needs some follow-up. If your BS can't do it, see if he'll let you - if she's open to it. Some BS are willing to speak to OPs. Most aren't, but some are, myself included.

OK, so maybe their M is theirs and yours is yours. But if you can help her and your BS is willing, I think you owe it to her, even if it causes triggers in your M. Triggers aren't bad if handled well. Hell, they can be good. And I really think helping this woman as a united front may actually be good for R - again, with boundaries, with time limits. Maybe just not such a harsh, "here you go, now stay away."

bionicgal posted 10/10/2013 12:17 PM

I may backpedal a bit, and say that BH should have a large say in what happens. But, i do think that your responsibility to BW is somewhat minimal. I am all for doing is what is best in your marriage, your BH cannot save the other BW, and I think "going back there" isn't terribly healthy for your guys.

I say this as a BW who was good friends with the AP's husband. He is someone I really care about, but can have very limited contact with. If AP gaslighted him or minimized and he wanted to talk 2 years out, I might. But, my marriage comes first, KWIM?

[This message edited by bionicgal at 12:18 PM, October 10th (Thursday)]

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