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How is this supposed to work?

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rbf1234 posted 11/12/2013 16:38 PM

For years, I was the generous, kind, supportive wife. Our sex life was great. Most nights. Rare for a long term married couple I think. If he had been the least bit affectionate (outside the bedroom), it made me deliriously happy. (Didn't happen often.)

Now 13 months after DD, he has finally left behind the MLC and the fog, and trying to repair the marriage. But it feels like the damage is done. I am a broken person and a raging bioch. I can't stand the idea of sex. My sexuality feels like it has died. And words or gestures of affection that would once have sent me over the moon seem meaningless.

If he didn't want me when I was great, it seems idiotic to want me when I am a mess. Even I hate myself right how.

Can someone tell me how reconciliation is supposed to work? Seems pretty hard to me. We are doing MC and IC. He is mostly doing what he should. And I can't divorce. My kids wouldn't survive.

Has anyone recovered after 1+ years of misery?

2married2quit posted 11/12/2013 16:41 PM

I could only imagine how it feels for a woman. It kinda is the same for a guy I suppose. I never felt quite the same, but were times when I didn't want to have sex with her and if I did I felt guilty for doing so. Like she doesn't deserve for me to pleasure her.

However, I do think what you're feeling is normal. Once you accept what happened and let it go, you'll be able to reconnect.

Wishing you the best.

RightTrack posted 11/13/2013 01:27 AM

Personally, I think if you are reconciling you should have sex. It helps. Oxytocin is good stuff. I trigger just about every time we start but at the end I feel a little closer to him If you just can't right now maybe start with something selfish like him giving you a long back rub (or a day at a spa) and then work from there.

atsenaotie posted 11/13/2013 08:28 AM

Hi rbf1234,

Can someone tell me how reconciliation is supposed to work? Seems pretty hard to me.

Reconciling your M after betrayal is hard work, that part seems universal. As for how it is supposed to work, I can relate what has worked for me, and others based on what I read here on SI.

For me, the first step to R was to heal myself. Once I felt safe that FWW was NC with her OM and that she really did want to try to fix herself and our M, I really had to let go of what FWW was or was not doing and focus on me.

If he didn't want me when I was great, it seems idiotic to want me when I am a mess. Even I hate myself right how.

The quote above is an example of where you can start your work. Never mind what he may or may not think about you, why do you hate yourself? Work towards being the person you want to be, and then after you are on your way to that goal and healed (or healing), look and see if your FWS is someone that you want to be M to.

As for sex, my IC/MC stated that sex was the first thing to leave when there is a problem in the relationship, and the last thing to return. When you have healed, and he has sustained work on being a better partner, then your sexual feelings with return if and when your loving feelings do.

The fact you were a generous and supporting wife in a M with great sex is just more evidence that his A was about him, not about you. He needs to fix his issues that led him to turn outward to an OW rather than inward to a loving W. While he is doing that, you need to work on forgiving yourself, accepting what has happened, and moving towards healed so that you can live a happy life regardless of your WS.

For now, maybe work less on the R, and more on you. Be happy not divorcing for now while you get to healed and your WH addresses his internal issues. Then, when you are in a better place and his actions have been sustained and consistent, you can refocus on R together.

rbf1234 posted 11/13/2013 11:07 AM

I don't have confidence that I can heal myself. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger? Not true for me. What didn't kill me left me damaged and vulnerable.

I went through terrible things in my 20s and 30s. Violence, illness, death of family members. Nearly nearly died myself. Several different and entirely unrelated traumas. It is amazing I survived. I worked so hard to overcome those traumas with IC and unbelievable determination. I am so proud of what I overcame and what I achieved. As a result, in my 40s, I had a miraculous renaissance - mentally, physically, emotionally, professionally. I finally saw the possibility of health, joy and happiness in life. I thought my marriage was one of the great achievements of my life.

Unbeknownst to me, this period coincided with my husband's MLC - and multiple affairs that I discovered last October/November (one PA, multiple EAs, ONS, etc.).

The discovery of his cheating has destroyed me. The worst thing is that he (particularly at the beginning of reconciliation) blamed his cheating on having to go through those previous traumas with me. So now the belief that those traumas were part of my past, that I was a survivor not a victim - it all seems delusional now.

In fact, those past traumas caught up to me and destroyed my marriage. Now instead of being in the past, those events are part of my life in the form of a damaged marriage. They are no longer my past. They are my present and my future.

It feels too much.

By the way, I don't really hate myself. I am just so miserable. For one thing, you wouldn't believe how I have aged in the past year. A year ago I was attractive for my age. Now I have severe Rosaea from stress that can't be covered up by make up. I look 10 years older. It is enough of a self esteem hit that my husband left me emotionally years ago (despite using me sexually throughout that time)... it is made worse now to know that now I look awful by any objective standard.

But I can't divorce. We have a troubled child who wouldn't survive.

As you can see, I am throwing myself a major pity party!

And the person whom I used to turn to for support (my husband) is now my major source of pain.

2married2quit posted 11/13/2013 11:16 AM

It's not easy. FWW not only cheated but said "I don't love you". 1.5yrs later and she still says she does not love me or want to be with me yet she does the opposite. So we've come to the conclusion that she's got issues and it's not me. Talk about damage...this has DAMAGED me big time.

Her reasons are normal, but not to the degree.

RipsInMyChest posted 11/13/2013 14:06 PM

(((((Rbf1234))))) I am so sorry you find yourself here and struggling. My only advice is to take care of yourself. Eat healthy, exercise, and work on stress reduction. By being your best self, you will feel better. We ALL will be old and gray someday, it is the work you do on the INSIDE that counts most.

You are not alone in wondering why a WS would stay when you are a mess when they didn't stay when you were fine. The only thing I can say to you (and myself when I feel this way) is that it had NOTHING to do with you! The fact that he is blaming past troubles for his cheating is total blame shifting. You went through those same traumas and didn't cheat!!

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