One feeling that I have been struggling with this week is embarrassment in two different ways:
1) So I'm hanging around with this guy, who is 40. This guy thought a 23 year-old was the solution to his problems. When I hear his story, he sounds kind of pathetic. I am embarrassed for him. Embarrassed that this guy thought this was a solution, embarrassed that this guy was completely unprofessional and abused his role as a mentor, and embarrassed that he became "that guy" who has a midlife crisis and goes after someone out of college.
2) Wait a second. Holy crap, I am married to "that guy"!?! Now I am embarrassed for me. Not only is he "that guy", I am "that woman". Even when we are out and don't know anybody, my inner voice will start talking and say, "Yes, everyone he had an affair with a 23 year old. Yep, he had a text book affair, pretty sad, eh? Yep, I am doing to be the good wife and give him a second chance. Yep, I am just THAT awesome."
I am hoping this is a phase and it will evolve into a new feeling, but I am worried that I will always feel a bit embarrassed for the pathetic-ness of his choices and that I am pathetic for letting him walk over me and then taking him back.
Did other's experience this? Did it last? Advice?
My head says, your WH acted like a jerk out of a desire to sleep with a much-younger woman.
Having your WH act like a jerk doesn't mean he IS a jerk. If he was a jerk you wouldn't be giving him another chance. He made a selfish choice, that's all. Nothing to be embarrassed about, lots of pain to get through, though.
I have been feeling less and less shame as time goes on, and working on seeing my WW as someone who made an ugly, selfish choice that maybe I can live with, maybe not.
Stay strong and work on feeling pain without shame. It is possible and much more appropriate — you've been hurt (therefore the pain) and you have not done anything to feel embarrassed about (don't own his shame).
We just get to deal with the fallout.
Just last week he gets invited to a reunion. A workplace reunion (somewhere he worked when we first started dating 30 years ago.)
I tell him I think he should go alone. I don't know anyone that will be there and he can visit without me. He insists I go with him, He want's "me there with him."
I have lost count of the number of times in the past that I have been with him in this type of situation. In the past (prior to D'Day) I always went with him to please him, to keep him happy. Old habits die hard. There we are at the reunion, and after that first hour he leaves me sitting there on my own while he wanders off to visit, he does this after he promised me that he would not leave me just sitting there. I had explained to him that socializing feels stressful for me now because of the feelings of shame and embarrassment I feel over his betrayal. So there I am again... I'm feeling like freaken Charlie
Brown running for the football. After 90 minutes he comes back. WE LEAVE! The ride home is a nightmare. I let him have it with both barrels.
Long story short, I think I might be getting pissed about things I should have been pissed about all along instead of being such a good sport ( you're such a knucklehead Charlie Brown).
Gift to me. I don't have to put myself in uncomfortable situations for him anymore.
That felt good!
[This message edited by toughernow at 3:05 PM, October 27th (Sunday)]
Married 23 years - together for 29 years
DDay - June 10th 2012 then TT'd-June 2012 - July 2012 (and beyond????)
2 amazing children
"Understanding love is one of the hardest things in life." - Fred Rogers
I got so deep into my own rant there that I completely forgot to address the request for advice.
I try to "self-talk" my way out of those low feelings. I remind myself that I have lived my life with honesty and integrity, and at the end of the day I am responsible for my choices and actions , not his.
And I make myself a sandwich!
FeelingSoMuch - After I read your post, I think I am getting it, but just have to figure out how to accept it. Like you, I have to get the gut, heart, and head on the same page. He is the one that has to own it, not me. His choices were really pathetic, but I wasn't part of that. What makes it hard is that I do obsess over it and I think he would be perfectly happy if it was never mentioned it again. I hate how easily he can move on...
toughernow - That would suck! It is hard enough to be standing next to him, but if he would leave me alone, I would go crazy! Maybe you can have a code word like "Charlie Brown" for when he starts to head off and it will help him remember he needs to stick around. Otherwise the only time he can leave you along is he is 1) in the bathroom or 2) getting you a drink. :-)
[This message edited by ILINIA at 5:50 PM, October 27th (Sunday)]
There are definitely some silly and irrational fears that we have after affairs that nobody would understand just how reasonable unless they are going through the same thing.
"What did you expect? I am a scorpion."
Also, my husband had his 2nd affair with his student, in the department where I also trained. And everyone knew us both - as a couple. I've always wondered who picked up on it. She wasn't a young student (2nd career) and is very pretty and he admits that they spent time getting tea in the cafeteria and that he was so excited to see her for rounds.
I'm just so embarrassed. I can't help but think that at least one or two people realized it. And may have thought "poor IDeserveMore"
Hoping for Serenity, Courage, and Wisdom!!!!