Me: BW, divorced, now fabulous and happy!
On the fear vs. reality thread, careerlady posted some fears but isn't far enough along for reality, so I thought it might be nice for those of us further out to post likely scenarios. It's so hard to see when you're in the thick of things, but one of the things that kept me going was hearing success stories from other people, imagine my new, fabulous life, and getting encouragement.
Fear: it will be hard for me to give my 16 month old son up for a whole day or 2 at a time and it will be hard for him to go back and forth. Also STBX is unreliable so he may not keep to our agreements. Conversely, maybe I won't have much help with child rearing and the nanny will have to cover my hours (right now STBX is traveling most of the week). My parents said they will visit once a month to help.
Likely reality: you will become even closer with your parents, and your son will develop a wonderful relationship with them -- closer than either of you otherwise would have been.
Because he's still so young and won't remember his parents together, it will be normal for him, since kids are resilient and he has a fabulous, caring mom. He'll be fine. I don't have kids, but many moms on here have said that they ended up appreciating having some time to themselves.
You're smart and will figure out issues surrounding childcare.
Fear: My STBX will see the light and stop being a verbally abusive cheater and I'll miss out on the improved version (yeah right he's still blaming everyone else for this)
Likely reality: As you said yourself, this isn't going to happen. And, if he does shape up, it will be good for your son to have two good parents in his life. By the time this would happen (if it were to ever happen) you'll already be at indifference and living a new, wonderful life (probably with an amazing guy) and wonder why you ever wanted to be with XWH.
Fear: I'll be lonely because I moved up here for STBX's career and now I'm stuck hundreds of miles away from my family and friends without him. Already started making some good friends up here so hopefully that's not true.
Likely reality: You've already started making friends. You sound like a social person, and you'll meet a ton of people as your son gets into more activities. Pretty soon your social calendar will be really full and you'll have trouble fitting everything in.
Fear: I'll never find a good man.
Likely reality: There are tons of good, honest, faithful men. If you take the time to properly heal, you'll eventually find one. My IC told me that once I'm in a good relationship, I won't even believe how wonderful it can be. (Cheaters usually also have other undesirable relationship characteristics.) I figure that I will appreciate this good man more when I find him since I've experienced the opposite and won't take him for granted ever!
I know when I was just a few months in, I posted a similar fear on a completely unrelated forum. One poster responded with a vivid picture of how, once I'm past this, I'll find a good guy. We'll be snuggling in front of the fireplace, and he'll be thanking XWH for being such an idiot for letting an amazing woman get away. That carried me through some dark days.
Fear: I will struggle financially. Even though I was the breadwinner I worry about paying for the house on my own, paying for childcare on my own, and him winning alimony.
Likely reality: You'll make it. You make good money, and will make adjustments as necessary. Alimony, if he gets any, won't be forever, so you make have to pare down your plans for a while (I had to) but in the long run, you'll be much better off. You'll realize that he spent money on ridiculous things, so once it's just you and your son, you'll have extra money left over!
Careerlady, I know it's hard to see now, but you have an amazing future ahead of you. I know life has great things in store for you, and I can't wait to hear about them happening to you!!! We've seen it play out here so many times. We joke about a WS handbook, but I also think there is a post-D BS handbook, also. After mourning and getting through some really tough stuff, we pick ourselves up and remake our lives to be far better than we ever could have imagined at D-Day minus 1.
Married: 11 years, no kids
Character is destiny