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Feeling alone in my pain

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OptimisticWife posted 11/11/2013 06:44 AM

I feel like H and I are going backwards. I feel like I'm hurting like crazy and triggering all over the place.
It's A season again and I am feeling angry, heart broken, lonely, stupid, confused...and more!

H seems to have lost his sense of remorse. He's losing his patience when it comes to my healing. The last few times I've tried talking to him about my triggers or my pain/healing he has blown up and told me he feels like I'm rubbing his face in his A. He said that we can't move forward because I keep dragging us back to the A.

You can imagine how angry this makes me. I have a temper and so does H. I find myself stuffing down my feelings to avoid the argument that will end our marriage. I have so much to say but feel that I can't. Our kids get frightened when we argue. My H is back to a place where I know he can't talk calmly about the A. He wants me to pop it in a box on a shelf just as he has.

If he read this post I'm sure he'll tell me I'm wrong. He'll get angry at me for putting words in his mouth. He'll tell me that he's got so much to deal with that her feels overwhelmed. He'll tell me that I've hurt him too in the past by neglecting him to spend time with my friends and traveling.

It's back to where we were a year or so ago. I am angry. He's grumpy half the time and not approachable. I don't have any concerns or red flags about another A or renewed contact with the AP. I don't understand though why he's being so self centered again.

He has his moments where he's very sweet and loving just as long as I am 'fine'. The minute he sees I'm down, he tenses up and gets in defensive mode again.

I know I need to talk to him but its hard to pick a right moment. It never seems like a good time. We don't get time alone without the kids. H is usually asleep before the kids because he gets up early.

I want to know why he's regressing to a point where I can no longer approach him.

Two years ago today was the day I found out my life as I knew it had ended. The next few months are full of triggers. I can't count on him to be there for me.

I guess I just needed to vent. I only see my IC once a month because of financial restrictions. I have no one else IRL to talk to. I feel like giving up

[This message edited by OptimisticWife at 6:49 AM, November 11th (Monday)]

SeeThingsNow1 posted 11/11/2013 07:30 AM

I hear you and understand. This is A season for me also and I had a sit down with H after I had thrown a snarky comment that had to do with ( heard the OW name on tv and made a smart ass comment )and got a , what I took as a "you are such a bitch" comment back. I insist on "conversation" dates and we had an errand to run and I pulled off into a park area and we had an impromptu conversation date. I explained to him that I understand he can put aside all the crap and its over to him and he can hear that ugly name, the place she is from , all different kinds of words or phrases and it has no meaning ( good or bad) for him- good for you - but to me, it is fingernails down the chalkboard and literally causes an emotional reaction. I do not need for him to try and make me feel bad if I spew out a comment about it, vent whatever it is - he caused me to have that reaction from his bad choices. I dont expect that when I throw out a comment that we have to sit and have an indepth conversation about it, just be there and tell me he's sorry he did what he did and that still it upsets me. That would be enough for me at most times. He takes it that when I make a snarky comment I am trying to "punish" him over and over....I let him know, it is not punishment, it is consequences of bad choices. To him, it is done, he is sorry,he has made all the changes with openness transparency etc why does it have to come up - I told him because you made a choice along with your nasty ow and didnt invite me - i had no choice. It still hurts on an emotional level and probably I will never like the name of the place she lives, her name,etc. I dont break down and sob and rage but I still have an internal reaction to hearing it and sometimes , the bitchy comments come out and you can listen and hear that your bad choices affected an innocent person.I am sure as time goes by it will lessen and lessen but if it comes out, acknowledge that YOU caused it and you need to deal with the consequence.

[This message edited by SeeThingsNow1 at 7:33 AM, November 11th (Monday)]

OptimisticWife posted 11/11/2013 07:52 AM

Thank you for replying. I totally hear you about the name. I have 3 friends with the same name as the AP and my best friend's sister also has the same name. I hate the name. I'm constantly wishing it was something less common.

I am going to have to talk to my H. I know this. I suggested talking today but he chose to watch tv instead. He was a bit grumpy because of work stress so I knew it wasn't a good time to talk anyway.....hmm.....lightbulb moment.....H has used his aggression as an avoidance technique in the past. He knows I most likely will let him off the hook if I sense an argument will be the end result. What an ass! Tomorrow we will be having a scheduled chat. I'll give him plenty of notice so he can be ready for it.
Why is he regressing? Could it just be that he's simply just run out of patience? I feel like we're at a real crossroads here.

RipsInMyChest posted 11/11/2013 08:03 AM

I'm so sorry that you're going through this. You are not alone. I think many WH seem to get overwhelmed with their own guilt and their own feelings. I know for me, about two months ago my WH started not wanting to talk about it anymore and he feels like it's punishment. We had a really good conversation this weekend, and I feel like I'm beginning to understand why.

One of his big issues is that he doesn't necessarily believe that it should take two years or more to heal. He feels like once you've gotten all the information you should be able to logically say I can get over this or not, make the decision, and move forward. I had to pull threads on SI up for him to read so that he can gain some understanding that logic and emotion do not have the same timeframe. He truly doesn't understand PTSD, triggers, and the gap between emotion and logic. For him there is virtually no gap between his logic and his emotions...for me it's as wide as the sea.

SeeThingsNow1 posted 11/11/2013 08:13 AM

My H asked me a couple of months ago..."How long is this gonna go on, with you needing to talk or pop up questions, you know everything?" I said, "NO , YOU and her know everything, I am having to dig and make sure I know everything." And if I feel like I need to ask something, if I want to ask anything, I should be able to without you giving me grief about it. I know it makes you uncomfortable, embarrassed and all those other "bad" feelings...but when you sit and calmly answer questions, it fosters calm in me. When you look at me and tell me you are sorry ( no matter how many times and times that you think its overkill and not necessary) it makes me feel that you care about my feelings and are willing to do what it takes , no matter how long it takes to make sure that I am ok. I find that when I am in a non hostile mode of thinking ( which is why making conversation dates helps me ) and I can acknowledge we have different feelings and ways of dealing with situations - I seem to hear more intimate , emotional things from him and he even said yesterday - 'I feel close to you today, from having that talk, I like this" But he will never , as of this time, initiate a conversation but he will participate - and that is enough for me right now...

TrustGone posted 11/11/2013 08:14 AM

I think a lot of us in R can relate to what you are going through. Unfortunately we wound up with WH's that are regretful for their A, but not truely remorseful.

My WH sounds pretty much like what you are describing. He wants to sweep it all under the rug now and pretend it never happened. We also argue whenever I bring it up because he says it's in the past and he can't change it, he is sorry for what he did, but we need to look at the here and now.

In a way I can understand that someone would not want a very bad choice brought up to them on a daily or weekly basis, but I think when we trigger, we should be allowed to voice why we are triggering. Of course I have voiced this to my WH, but he just doesn't "get it". I have told him we can't ignore the elephant in the room. You name it, I have probably said it at one time or another in the last two years, but to no avail.

I know alot of us want the great remorseful husbands/wives that we see and read about on SI, but the truth is that they are a minority, they are not the norm. My opinion is that you have to either accept the WS you have now or you have to give them up is the choice after 2-3yrs. I have seen posters on here 7yrs out and still not healed because they keep waiting for their spouse to be something they never will be. Of course that is JMO.

I just wanted you to know that you are not alone in how you are feeling. (((HUGS)))

OptimisticWife posted 11/11/2013 09:09 AM

Thank you all for your insightful replies.

I guess the most frustrating thing TrustGone is that I did feel like my H was remorseful. I felt I was able to talk to him about my triggers and my pain in general. He use to listen and try and comfort me. Even if he felt like he didn't know what to do or say he would hug me and apologize for the pain he caused me. I felt like he use to be willing to do whatever I needed him to do to help me heal.
He took responsibility for my emotional state and he was genuinely trying to be there for me. He still does to some extent.
He is very affectionate, he says loving things constantly that make me feel valued and loved. He pays me compliments which he very rarely did in the past. He helps me a lot more with the kids and household duties etc.
Now, we only have an issue is he thinks I'm upset about something A related. If its something unrelated, he's more supportive.

I feel like I can relate RipsInMyChest. I think H feels like he gave me time, has been patient and made lots of changes. He just doesn't get how deeply scarred I am. I feel like I died. I feel like I'm mourning my old self. I'm still learning who the new me is. I hate her. I hate that his choice changed me. I loved who I was at the time he had his A. It was the first time in my life I could truly say that. I have lost so much of myself along with losing the marriage and the H that I thought I had. So much to mourn.

H has had trauma in his life. He understands PTSD but he's regressed as I said. It seems he can no longer empathize with me. He has retreated back into his self centered ways of thinking. That is what frustrates me the most and because I don't understand why. He blames work stress. I can only conclude he's frustrated with the length of my healing process like I said.

Dreamland posted 11/11/2013 12:34 PM

I can relate as well. Our DDay are close and this is A season as well. Our DD bday is coming up and it's a huge trigger. I told H about it and he was still denying that his action 2 years ago had anything to do with the A. Yesterday he was yelling at me because he says I bring up the A when he is stressed at work or has a deadline. I looked at him for sometime and said you are yelling at me because you had an affair and you don't want me to bring it up( I was driving had just picked him up from work at midnight). I just laughed at him. He is the one who put us in this situation. There are so many other things I am dealing with because of his choices and I paid the consequences. I told him if I was such a bother we could fix that. I said he could leave and not deal with any of it anymore. I getting to that point of being done. I would have normally given him hell for his attitude but he and DD were getting up early and I didn't want any drama. He apologized but it seems so empty.
Anyway I don't have much to say that helps but wanted to give support. I don't think he needs a bit of shaking up.
Good luck on your chat.

OptimisticWife posted 11/11/2013 15:22 PM

Thank you Dreamland. I'm sorry you're in a similar situation. I hate that any of us are here at all.
H has agreed to talk later. I just have to now try and make sense of all my thoughts and figure out how to communicate the to H effectively.

Dreamland posted 11/11/2013 15:38 PM

Sending you positive organized and effective thoughts...

ItsaClimb posted 11/12/2013 01:11 AM

I can so relate to what you have expressed here OptimisticWife. My take on a similar set of circumstances in my own situation is this:

My WH regrets hurting me, he wants to "do the right thing" and make this all go away asap. On the surface it all seems fairly okay - apart from the fact that he often mirrors my anger and is sometimes defensive, not about the A, but about his current reaction to my pain.

The problem lies in the fact that he doesn't DEEPLY comprehend the level of betrayal, the enormous life-changing trauma I am going through, the depth of pain I am experiencing, the fact that this has forever changed me and our marriage. He gets it to an extent, but not FULLY or deeply.

So in his eyes, he has done most things right, he has answered my questions, he is in MC with me, he had a poly, he is being open and honest etc etc... basically he has done what he feels he needs to have done for us to "get over this". He just doesn't understand that it goes SO much deeper than that. So now he is frustrated... he's like "what more can I do?!"

It boils down to a complete lack of comprehension of the severity and depth of the betrayal IMHO.

My husband lacks the sensitivity, the depth of emotion and the understanding to do or be more than he currently is. I have to either accept that or walk.

hopingforhappy posted 11/12/2013 09:50 AM

I recently read this Opinion piece in the NY Times: The title is "Great Betrayals" and the author is a psychiatrist who has dealt with clients and the problems that have arisen from betrayals in their lives. It resonated with me because she basically says that the betrayer lived through the whole thing and understands what happened. The betrayed is living with a big hole in their lives and is stuck trying to figure it out. I had my FWH read this and I think it helped him to understand. He has asked me before why I want to keep re-living the past by going back to talk about the A.

The truth of the matter is I am not trying to RE-live anything. I am trying to fill in the huge 5 year gap in the story of my life. I thought I had a reasonably happy M during that time. Now I don't know what that 5 years was. I still struggle with it. Counselors tell you that your M ended with the A and that you have to re-build a new one. Ok. When exactly did my M end? When the A started? When I found out? What do I do with that period of time when the A was going on? My FWH tells me that we were M the whole time, he never stopped loving me and was never going to leave me. He says that time together was real. It does not feel real and I don't think he can understand why I feel that way.

If you have not been through this, you just can't get it. But our WS's need to try--and keep trying, forever, if necessary.

OptimisticWife posted 11/16/2013 07:50 AM

Thank you for your replies. I took some time to process what you have all written and work out exactly what's going on for me. Thank you.

I did talk to H about how I was feeling. He got defensive and annoyed with the first attempt but he finally listened a couple of days later when I brought it up again. In fact, I brought it up the second time after he apologized for being harsh and aggressive when we first spoke. It was good that he thought about his initial response, apologized and then heard me out calmly and patiently. That alone made me feel a little better. The frustrating part is that he knows exactly what I need and he said he feels like he knows what he needs to do in the moment to support me. He doesn't know why he doesn't always follow through. I told him that from my perspective he was returning to his selfish ways where he can't see beyond his own feelings. I told him how this scares me and makes me feel unsafe. I let him know that when I can't share my thoughts and feelings with him that I begin to feel resentment. I finally identified that this is my line in the sand. This is my deal breaker.
I can't be with him if he's going to get frustrated at the path and speed of my healing. I will not allow him to make me feel bad because I do not heal from this life changing, excruciating pain he has caused me the way he thinks I should.

Thank you all for your advice. It really has helped me.
Hopingforhappy, I read the article too so thank you. I was able to use parts of that in our discussion too. It was very useful

We are going for a week long topical vacation alone (no kids) in a couple of weeks for my 40th birthday. I'm looking forward to seeing how we handle that. H cheated just after he turned 40. He was feeling really down about getting older so 40 is a bit of a trigger for me. Also, my birthday is a trigger too. We are doing a lot of new and exciting activities on our vacation so I really hope it builds some fantastic new memories for us. Fingers crossed.....

steadfast1973 posted 11/17/2013 09:31 AM

I will also be 40 in a couple weeks.

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