I shared with her that he had and she got tears in her eyes and said the same thing happened to her mom. Her dad cheated on her with his secretary and ultimately lost his job for it. My WH also lost his job because of it.
It's what she said next that threw me a little. Although it was well intended, she said "you just need to forgive him".
We are trying to R and he is doing his damnedest to make things right. Absolute remorse. My life is immeasurably better in so many ways. He is present and loving like he never has been before. He's a great dad. He's finally a great provider and works his ass off to take care of us. He is truly a different man than he was two years ago. Him losing his job was the best thing because he's now doing what he loves. He is transformed in so many ways. But I can't let it go. Can't trust him with my heart yet.
So in a roundabout way, what I'm saying is, is it really that simple? Will forgiveness allow me to get unstuck in R? Year 2 has been a total bitch so far. He hasn't wavered though in his commitment to me.
So is forgiveness the piece that I'm missing?
Thank you. I haven't put the F in WH and I'm sure that the trust factor plays a huge part in that. Maybe F means former and forgiveness!
It just really got me thinking, you know. I get so bogged down in my emotions and I'm tired. So tired of feeling this way. It's not that I don't want to feel better, I just sometimes feel that I'm incapable of living in the present and appreciating all of the goods things in life (healthy, smart loving kids, great family, a nice home just to name a few). It was a simple statement she made but it really got me thinking...
Good thoughts coming your way as you navigate R!
I've asked her if it was hard to forgive and trust. And she's told me doing so lifted an elephant from her chest.
I have something precious to guard and grow. Her gift to me was a gift to herself...and us.
Amazing girl...the girl I cheated on. And the girl I'll love above all others until the day I die. She believes in me. I f*cked that up once. Never again. Never...
Yeah I like this! I think it describes what I feel too, thank you!
JustDesserts, what you wrote was beautiful. Thank you for sharing your perspective. I'd like to think my WH feels the same way!
JustDesserts- thank you so much. It takes a lot to come and post and share your journey. I appreciate your words. They give me- and others I am sure- hope.
People throw the word forgiveness around, as though it is as easy as taking a piss. It's not that easy. The person- the ONE person in the whole world- who vowed to love you unconditionally, never to hurt you, to be trustworthy, faithful and a good husband completely failed miserably and hurt you. He could be an angel now, and you know what? That doesn't take back what he did. He could win the lottory and buy you a new house, car, wardrobe, diamonds...still wouldn't change what he did. It's something that he- AND YOU- have to live with forever. It's not so easy to "just" forgive.
To me, that coworker response is like you saying that your husband has heart failure, and her saying, "well, you'll just have to perform open heart surgery." No biggie, right? You'll "just have to" do it!
I'm sure she didn't mean it that way...but that is a fair comparison to me.
"What did you expect? I am a scorpion."
Much that I've read says forgiveness is for us just as much as the offender. Not sure about that but I know we are reconciling and are much more of aware and considerate of each others' needs and wants.... life is good.
My H asked me if I'd ever forgive him during the middle of year one and I told him then I didn't know if I ever could.....I still feel that way. It's not like he crashed my car or broke my favorite vase......he lied to me, over and over, for five years and led me to believe there was something wrong with me and that's why he acted the way he did. I still see the effects in our family today from those five years and to be honest, I don't know if that is forgivable.....time will tell though.....three years ago I never thought I'd be excited when he came home from a business trip or that he could make me laugh again. If there's anything I've learned from this trauma, it's to never say never and to let life work it's magic....
People throw the word forgiveness around, as though it is as easy as taking a piss.
Much that I've read says forgiveness is for us just as much as the offender
I figure if this is true, than not forgiving is also something I can do for myself.
There is no trying to forgive, there just is. However, I don't feel I mean it the same way as your co-worker did.
When one tries to forgive is when the problem comes in. I feel forgiveness is a process. It happens in increments. It happens while you are processing what happened. It happens while you are healing. It happens with time.
With this process of forgiveness, one day you will wake up and realize that you have forgiven.
ETA: This is how my online dictionary defines forgiveness. At 3 1/2 years out, I am still not quite there. I can feel it is within my grasp. My anger and resentment only shows up rarely now, but it is still there. Forgiveness is a work in progress for me.
1. stop feeling angry or resentful toward (someone) for an offense, flaw, or mistake.
[This message edited by SisterMilkshake at 7:14 PM, October 23rd (Wednesday)]
"Oh, why do my actions have consequences?" ~ Homer Simpson
"She knew my one weakness: That I'm weak!" ~ Homer Simpson
I guess I've never thought of forgiveness as a single event, but now my WH does. Unfortunately, I think he thinks there is going to be a magical moment where I forgive him, and then we go ride unicorns and slide down rainbows together for the rest of our life.
I wouldn't dare say the words, "I forgive you" because I would feel pressured to never show my anger again. Or never bring it up again. If I told him this and then weeks later have a bad day, I'm afraid his reaction would be, "I thought you forgave me?! Why are we still talking about this?!" But that's just my WH.
I think forgiveness is a process. Haven't we all forgiven our WS's at least a little bit to commit to R? How else could we have moved forward without it?
I hate this whole forgiveness topic. It's confusing and I think we all get caught up in it rather then letting the healing occur naturally.
If you think, based on his remorse and other things, he is worth staying married to, then yes, I believe you will both be much happier if you forgive him.
No, it is not simple, but it was something that I realized I needed to do very early on after my decision to stay with him (if no new and damaging information/lies or further cheating happened, of course).
I remember actually working on it, telling myself in times of anger, that I would need to think of the good things he was doing, and work harder on forgiving and dwelling less on what he did, and more on what he was doing to be a better person.
I always say that that the WS should do almost ALL the work for R but then again I also know if anyone in the world (whether WS or BS or neither) wants a good marriage with warmth and intimacy, that person also has to work at the relationship and be a giving, loving person, and sometimes forgiving, person.
But I can't let it go. Can't trust him with my heart yet.
It has been seven years out for us and we are closer than ever and I probably trust him 99.9% but the point is there is a part of me that always will know anything is possible and sometimes things are not what they seem. I know this but don't dwell on it. I dwell on the here and now. We are close and we love each other, have fun together, support each other when things (not related to M) go wrong.
For me the only way to deal with that sliver of possibility he could betray me again is to have a plan for myself in case he did. And that plan is get a D in record speed.
Will forgiveness allow me to get unstuck in R?
Years ago I was in an abusive relationship. Thankfully it didn't last long (less than a year)before he went to jail & my head cleared. I never allowed him back in my life but the scars were deep.
It took years, but I finally forgave him. For my protection I didn't break NC to tell him. But a huge weight was lifted off me and I had more joy in my life.
Forgiveness was easier then than it is now with my WH. It's still too fresh, I hope I can get there soon.
I also don't think I could 'forgive' after a few months. As I could not possibly of really appreciated what had occurred. I was really close to 'forgiving him' a few weeks after DDAY. But then I realised, that I was still in shock.
I do think however I am getting closer. That makes me happy. I sort of get this 'feeling' that it would be around the two year antiversary.
That makes me happy that I can do that for him
Because either way this stays with me for the rest of my life.
People who haven't walked in your shoes, don't know what to do, or what to say. She probably was thinking back to when her dad had cheated, and how mean and bitter her mother was because of it, and noted that Mom really changed when she finally forgave him, or knew that had her mom been able to get to the point of forgiveness she would have been happier.
Forgiveness gets a lot of air play in recovery, and for many of us it really shouldn't be the focus of things. The strange thing as you go through the process of healing, and do the work of R, is you do eventually heal, and suddenly there it is. Forgiveness, it has made it's entrance into the relationship, and you didn't even notice it's arrival. But for me it was a quiet peace, and acceptance that happened. OK he did this to us, to me, to him. We have been down a difficult road, and he made some horrible choices, but I accept that as the past, because he is no longer that guy. He had done the hard work, and changed, and the change was palapable.
So don't pressure yourself, it will come when you are ready, and not a moment sooner.