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Refuses to do polygraph...Do I 180?

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toughernow posted 10/30/2013 09:52 AM

We are just over a year into R and I need to be certain that I have the whole truth.

His answers have not changed but I feel there are gaps...things that just don't add up.
Told him I want him to do a poly... he refuses (????)

Should I be suspicious of his refusal?

If I 180 him will he come around?

Thought and suggestions on this situation PLEASE!

I am about to walk and I don't want to make a mistake here.

heartache101 posted 10/30/2013 09:57 AM

Ask him why? Why do you not care enough about you to make you feel secure in the relationship. See what he says..
I would walk myself if I ask for a poly and don't get it.
My spouse told me anytime bring it on...Soo find out what he is hiding what his fear is of the poly.
For me I wouldn't want my future to hang in the balance of a machine. I get that.. Soo if there is a problem with 1 question then maybe you can go back in a week and retake that 1 question maybe he fears what he has hidden? That is how us BSs would take that..

sisoon posted 10/30/2013 10:37 AM

This is critically important:

The purpose of the 180 here would be to get you comfortable with his refusal. The 180 does not aim to change your WS's behavior.

Some thoughts...

1) I believe a poly works only with yes/no questions, and only with a few at a time. Does that fit with what you want to know?

2) You don't need to 180 to issue an ultimatum, as in, 'Either take the poly or I walk now' - but that will only work if you really will walk if he refuses the test.

3) Very gently, there's no way to know the best thing to do ahead of time - you have to make your choices and live with the consequences, whatever they may be.

4) Some questions, the answers to which will probably better your odds of making a good decision for yourself -

Is your H NC, transparent, loving, honest about the things you've verified or can verify? Has his behavior at home changed? Is he in IC? If you're in MC, is he a full participant? Does he raise or avoid issues? Does he work with you non-defensively to solve issues?

If he fills in the gaps, will the answers affect your decision to stay or go?

Are the gaps the only real issue here, or are there other concerns about his commitment or yours lurking about?

[This message edited by sisoon at 10:39 AM, October 30th (Wednesday)]

toughernow posted 10/30/2013 11:09 AM

Thank you for the replies!


I could get the answers i need with YES/NO questions.

Thank you for the clarification on the 180.

The A he told me about , he said it happened 9 years ago. I believe him. I only found out 1.5 years ago.

I found out because he gave me an STD ,which was revealed through an abnormal PAP. Now, I have looked into the transmission of the virus, and although it is possible that I could have the two strands that I have from a single sexual event with one is not likely. This is what I have discovered from the research that I have done.

He is being loving and kind. Ironically, he has become the Husband I always thought that I had.

But, I need to be sure that I have the truth.

In addition to the truth I need to be certain that he has really looked at himself to answer the "why" questions.

I have followed some of your posts and you seem very wise. I would appreciate any input you can give, as you know my peace of mind is at stake.

Give it to me straight!

[This message edited by toughernow at 11:11 AM, October 30th (Wednesday)]

toughernow posted 10/30/2013 12:57 PM


Hi I'm back. I had to stop my post briefly.
But to answer your questions;

Yes he is NC according to him he has been since he ended it the last time they saw each other 9 years ago.

Transparent - As far as I know , although he travels extensively for work and is away from home several days out of the month.

Loving - Yes, until I want to talk about the A and insist that we do, then he becomes defensive, and withdrawn, and he seems to want to make it about him so that I will drop the discussion.

He was in IC for a handful of sessions while we were separated immediately after D'Day, but that came to an abrupt end when I invited him back home to R 8 weeks later.

We tried MC, but to be honest we both found it to be a "blunt instrument". He has owned the A. Never wanted out of the M, basically a "cake eater" affair.

[This message edited by toughernow at 12:58 PM, October 30th (Wednesday)]

heartache101 posted 10/30/2013 13:05 PM


Again why doesn't he want to take poly? He should talk openly to you about the affair. Being withdrawn and making it all about him is him manipulating you. His way or else.. To me that is not loving..
I get it for him it was 9 years but he needs to realize you have not had that time to process this.
I would recommend back into counseling a good infidelity counselor he needs to own what he did and answer your questions without manipulating you.
This way your monthly or bi monthly meetings will be about the affair. Maybe he won't be so manipulative in front of a counselor?

toughernow posted 10/30/2013 13:14 PM

Thanks Heartache,

I appreciate your take on this, and these are certainly questions that i have asked myself.

Just don't know what to do . I don't want to end a 29 year relationship if he has told me the whole truth, but theres the will I know for sure?

heartache101 posted 10/30/2013 14:11 PM

Nothing is 100% for sure.
The poly is not 100%. Just another crutch we Bss can use to make us feel safe in our relationship with someone we know can and will hurt us. Ouch.. That is a hard pill to swallow. Add that to a WS that cries and refuses to answer well you can't heal with that.
I know I didn't get squat from my spouse I had to decide on my own accept on my own. It is a road I wouldn't want my worst enemy to go down seriously.
Sooo what you do is you research your area for a good therapist that deals with infidelity. Make sure your therapist has been doing this for a while and handles marriages like yours and mine I am going on 30 years!
When do you know. Oh you know it is like a light bulb that goes off let me tell ya.
But for me now it is all the lies that was told. KWIM?
Your therapist will help you ascertain what you need.
My therapist said why why do you need to know that? Does it matter now? I just looked at her.. Like hell yes it matters now!
Ohhh 30 years a long road to haul..
He is manupulating you so he doesn't have to own up to his actions Oh why this again we have already went over this how much more can I take yada yada yada...That is not talking about the affair..He needs to own his actions face you and talk about it. If he doesn't like repeating it find ask him to write it down in a timeline as he remembers it. Oh he remembers it don't let him tell you that either!! Mine pulls that and I am like uhhh yeah like I am stupid!
My WSs therapist told my spouse if I wanted to yell at him for life he was to take it. She turned to me and said I don't recommend it but he earned it! I was lucky and he got a half way decent counselor back in the day...
Find yourself a counselor so that counselor can help you steer your yacht into the moonlight... We need to find out who is going to be aboard with ya!

sisoon posted 10/30/2013 14:35 PM

If you're talking about HPV, I get it. Usually I say 'understand', but 'get it' is probably more appropriate here - W tested positive for HPV twice, 12 months apart, after 40-odd years of monogamy.

A couple more thoughts -

1) It sounds like the refusal of the poly is not a deal killer for you now. Therefore, don't make it the subject of an ultimatum, because if he calls your bluff, you'll lose a lot of power.

2) What happens if there are other As? Will you D? Or will you push on with R? If you're likely to push on with R, I think something else may be behind your desire for a poly.

For me, BTW, the HPV brings out anger, sadness (because it makes me fear sex), and fear (of HPV-induced cancer 13 years from now). What feelings does the STD bring up for you?

Of course, if another A is a deal killer, then my point here is moot.

3) I also understand the importance of honesty, and if you say you just want to know the truth, I'm with you. Telling the truth was the prime way my W showed me she was remorseful.

Have you considered telling your H that the truth is important. In other words, you're not looking for more reasons to beat him up; you just want to know what actually happened.

Have you asked your H why he objects to the poly? If he says something about you not trusting him, I wonder and hope he'd come around if you said something like, 'Gently, H, you lied for 7.5 years about your A, so I can't trust you right now - but the poly would help build trust, and that's why I want you to take it.'

If things don't add up for you, it could be paranoia or long-lasting shock, but it's probably signals he's sending out. If you sense that he's not coming clean, you're probably right.

I guess the problem is that there's no legal way to force anybody to come clean, so your sitch is objectively very difficult to be in, which brings me/us back to the 180 - it can help you be strong and make the best decision for you, even though he's being less than totally honest.

4) Thanks for the kind words.

Again, this is a very difficult sitch, so don't beat yourself up for having to work hard to decide what to do.

[This message edited by sisoon at 2:40 PM, October 30th (Wednesday)]

LonelySilhouette posted 10/30/2013 15:26 PM

I have also been married for 29 years, and am asking my WH tonight if he'd be willing to do a poly.

He seems like he's doing everything else right at the moment. I just want to confirm or deny certain things he's told me. If I could find out that what he's told me is true, it would really help to build trust, imo. I think everyone wants to believe their spouse. But they've put us in this horrible position of not knowing what we can or cannot trust.

realitybites posted 10/30/2013 16:36 PM

I know this is the R forum so I tread lightly here....but it is never a good thing when the WS won't do whatever they can to give you a level of comfort. It then becomes about THEIR comfort and sadly that just won't work.

And if he travels alot and you have an STD I would say again, very gently, that there is probably way more you do not know about.

How strong are you in standing up for what you want to know? Meaning if he won't give it to you what are your steps from here?

sodamnlost posted 10/30/2013 17:06 PM

Loving - Yes, until I want to talk about the A and insist that we do, then he becomes defensive, and withdrawn, and he seems to want to make it about him so that I will drop the discussion

this makes the below quote not make sense. If he owns the affair why does he get defensive? Withdrawn? Manipulate you to drop the subject? That's not owning. That's the opposite in my world.

He has owned the A.

Also -

He was in IC for a handful of sessions while we were separated immediately after D'Day, but that came to an abrupt end when I invited him back home to R 8 weeks later.

Was this not a requirement for you for R?

On a side note - I'm biased BUT a poly doesn't even guarantee the truth. My WH took a poly and "passed" as in it said he did not lie. He actually did lie. He admitted a truth months after the poly that I asked on the poly. They are not always right ;(

toughernow posted 10/30/2013 17:30 PM

Thank you once again everyone for your responses. It means a lot to me right now, I can't even tell you how conflicted I feel right now.

heartache - I am going to suggest some counselling again.

sisoon - yes, the thought of the health consequences into he future do haunt me, and make me feel so angry.
realitybites - To be honest I just don't know how strong I can be in standing up for what I want to know. There is still a part of me that thinks "maybe he has told you the whole truth and you are just being motivated by irrational fear". What are my steps from here...????

sodamnlost - I think what I was implying with my statement about him "owning his A " was that he has never wavered from taking full responsibility, never blamed any of it on me, or anything other than his own selfish recklessness.

In my heart of hearts I want to reconcile but I am frightened to move forward... I guess I am limbo and in pain, and i want the quickest easiest way forward...either way.
I don't know maybe I have to reconsider, if I am only prepared to play "reconciliation chicken" with him.

[This message edited by toughernow at 5:32 PM, October 30th (Wednesday)]

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