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Hanging on too long to the "bad"

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karmahappens posted 11/19/2013 08:32 AM

I think R is a wonderful place to be in. I am a believer that the choice to enter it isn't easy, doesn't come overnight.

But when you and your WS decide to do it, really commit it's a life changing road.

Going through the grieving process, the anger, sadness and other negative feelings that wash over us is difficult. It is easy to get stuck in the bad stuff.

While it is important to give all the feelings their time it is equally as important to be done with them. I found it easy to get stuck in sadness or being angry at different times when really their purpose was done and I was just allowing myself to be held back from healing by holding onto these crutches longer than I should have.

My IC fought long and hard with me on letting the sadness go.

Hanging onto the negative feelings, living in the misery doesn't help R and it doesn't help your personal healing and growth. Once it has been worked through and dealt with you have to put it in it's spot.

If you are truly in R, with a spouse that is doing the work, making the changes and doing what they can to fix things why hold on to the bad? A BS has work to do too. They have to find their truth, heal their FOO issues and look deep for their demons.

There is a point in R when it no longer is about what your WS did to you. It becomes about what the two of you can do together. But you have to be willing to take that step and enter into it.

If you don't, you have to ask yourself ...

What am I getting from the negative feelings?

What am I choosing not to go forward?

There is a time, and when it comes, letting go of the fear, anger and sadness will free you for the next good thing to come.

So come on...leave the bad stuff at the door and enjoy the good, run with it.

[This message edited by karmahappens at 8:34 AM, November 19th (Tuesday)]

TennisTC posted 11/19/2013 09:43 AM

What a powerful message! Thanks for the post. I really needed to hear this today.

ItsaClimb posted 11/19/2013 09:57 AM

Thank you so much for that karmahappens!

sisoon posted 11/19/2013 10:19 AM

The question is 'How long is too long?'

For me, healing myself - as opposed to our M - is the process of letting the anger, grief, and fear go. Doing so, for me, started on D-Day, and it's ongoing still.

At just over a year out, I thought I was holding on too long. I was wrong - that decision was followed by a downward spiral. Now almost 3 years out, I think I may be there again, but I'm not at all sure. I'm back to playing by the seat of my pants ... which I guess is the normal guidance method for R, come to think of it.

I agree with you, karma, but I see danger here, especially if an unremorseful WS picks it up. If you try to suppress real feelings, you'll hurt yourself, and this is a very real possibility, because healing seems to take a lot longer than anybody wants it to take....

atsenaotie posted 11/19/2013 10:30 AM

For me the transition came when I really became focused on issues I could control and do something about, and let go of wishing she would be different, or "things" would be different. I could not do anything about her betrayals, her on-going issues, or (in a short term) our current financial situation impeding D. As I focused more on actions to move to the future I wanted for me and my children and took steps to move in that direction, the anger and sadness for those past issues began to fade. I feel more control and realize I am determining where I am going.

[This message edited by atsenaotie at 10:40 AM, November 19th (Tuesday)]

karmahappens posted 11/19/2013 10:33 AM

I think you know when you get there Sisoon.

There is a huge danger in rug sweeping, stuffing your feelings and pretending everything is wonderful.

I think there are some people that live in unhappiness and choose that as a way of life.

I see people using an A as a way to punish a long time remorseful spouse that has jumped through hoops to get R right.

I know, for me, I had to let happiness back in. I knew my H got it, I knew he was working hard and I still would let the negative outweigh the positive.

We are 6 years out, this didnt come in a year, hell not even 2-3.

It was a long time of work and healing and thoughtful decision making on a road that could be bumpy and full of potholes...

So I do not mean to anyone that they should be happy just because they want to isn't a solution, it's an end result.

I am sorry for any confusion...I would NEVER suggest someone not feel their truth.

ETA: And thanks always make me go hmmmmm

[This message edited by karmahappens at 10:42 AM, November 19th (Tuesday)]

TheAmazingWondertwin posted 11/19/2013 10:46 AM

Thank you-
this was much needed. Today is a postive and happy day for us, and this post really confirmed some things for me.
We are not there yet, but this post reminds me of what is important as we move forward.

HoneyMe posted 11/19/2013 10:54 AM

Thanks KarmaHappens. I feel I am approaching this spot, not quite there, but soon. This was something I needed to hear and remind myself of. Right now it is the light in the tunnel.

Rebreather posted 11/19/2013 11:47 AM

I do believe that we have to make a conscious choice to put it away. But I also agree it takes YEARS to get to a healthy and healed enough place to get there.

My IC calls it a corpse buried in the back yard. Look, we buried it together. It's there. We see the lump. But when you dig it up and drag it back into the house, the only thing it does is stink up the place. So stop digging it up.

I'm also 6 years out and have to occasionally tell myself "stop digging!"

But again, this is long-term healing and can only be successfully accomplished after that corpse is properly treated, embalmed and mourned.

Drowninginitall posted 11/19/2013 12:03 PM

Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting this!!! This sums up what my MC was saying to me today. I want to get stuck in it some days, and others if just creeps in on me. I need to figure out why I'm holding back my healing. My distrust, having been lied to and TT are eating me alive. I can't just put trust where it hasn't been earned any longer, and that just puts me back into my "bad stuff". My MC says "he is here, he says that's done...are you ready to move forward and rebuild your marriage?" I can only bear so much if the responsibility while also carrying all the "bad stuff".

rachelc posted 11/19/2013 12:12 PM

he is here, he says that's done...are you ready to move forward and rebuild your marriage?

so so hard to do when there have been lies...
Sure we can let go of the bad, but I can only do that if I feel safe enough in this marriage. The "bad" is a natural thing to hang onto when you've been hurt and can no longer trust. It's our warning system. You question everything.

Kudos to those who can let go. It will be years before I'm there.

he says that's done

he also said he wasn't having an affair. His word is shit.

sorry, drowning, I'm projecting my own experience. If you've had a remorseful spouse it will be easier for you. Good luck!!

catlover50 posted 11/19/2013 12:41 PM

Thank you, karma. It's nice to hear from someone years out and successful.

I have been working on letting go of the bad. That is my nature and perhaps a bit easier for me. I haven't triggered in a long time and haven't brought up the A either. However, I do find that it comes to mind every day. It usually doesn't cause me pain and then only a small twinge. I also find that I no longer feel the need to present it to my H; he is being everything I could have ever asked for and then some.

I was wondering just yesterday how long this dialogue would be running through my head; apparently for awhile! I chase it away successfully most times, follow it for a few minutes at other times. Sometimes, like yesterday, I get out my go-to email from my H about his whys/etc and reread it. Although I do think that I understand much of how he got there, sometimes it still nags at me.

Somewhat oddly, as my H cements his almost complete turnaround to becoming the perfect H I think "how could he?". I have to remind myself that this was not who he was then, this was not who we were. I truly don't think this version (H 2.0) would make the same disastrous choices.

We are both committed to continuing to put our M in the center of our lives and nurture it every day. And hopefully, in 5 more years, we can say what you are saying!

Sammy2013 posted 11/19/2013 12:52 PM

Thank you for posting this. I hope to be at this point some day. I am only a month out and feel like everyone is looking for me to do this now. I try so hard to focus on the good that has happened over the past couple of weeks. WH seems to be sincere and doing everything right (with a few bumps).

Unfortunately I keep having setbacks (pics on the computer he forgot about that I accidentally came across, etc.).

I'm still working on Mental Movies, self esteem issues, etc. I can't wait to be out of this stage. It's exhausting.

LA44 posted 11/19/2013 13:11 PM

Thank you karmahappens. I am having a down day - I started thinking of him and AP and 9/10 I am very good and putting that away bc I feel I have been there done that quite enough thank you.

Rebreather - love the corpse analogy!

I read a post not too long ago that said, "you have to keep telling the story over and over and over again until you are done with it." Okay. But...I do believe we can get "attached" to our story and that is NOT healthy. And how can you be done with it if you have engrained it like a tat in your brain? Sure, it is healthy to go through the stages. Do not rush through them. But when we keep revisiting.....well, like you said, "what are we getting from that?"

Case in MIL who essentially fell in love with her story and for the next 15+ years told it to anyone who would listen (and there were few listeners by then!). Time and again. It crippled her future with other men who could have been great partners. But most importantly, by repeating this story, coupled with the regular day to day crap that happens long after the A has ended, she made herself a victim and eventually could only see herself in this light. What did she get from it? For a while, attention, pity (which I guess some people feel comfortable getting) and a sense of justice.

t/j; Sammy2012, you are fresh out of the gates. People need to not have ANY expectations of where you "should" be at this point in time. Look... I am approaching my first year and have the model WS. It's still tough. Still painful. Take the good days when they come but this is a process. Tell them....."this is a marathon, not a sprint people!" Or just tell them to read SI!

Thanks again KH!

[This message edited by LA44 at 1:12 PM, November 19th (Tuesday)]

karmahappens posted 11/19/2013 14:39 PM

I am camping with Rebreather here.

We are YEARS out, I do not think anyone newly hurt, TT'd, recent ddays should be slapping happy on as a band aid.

I wrote this thread because a friend of mine lives in sadness. She takes what has hurt her in the past and allows it to be her now. She goes back years on hurts from her H, throws things up when she is angry and will let something fester forever...

When you have gone through R, have logged hours with the therapist, dumped the skeletons out of the closet and examined them, disected each others brains AND have a spouse doing the same, for a long, long time then it's time to set it aside.

It's time to enjoy the relationship you have built and worked so hard to get to.

This drowning

My MC says "he is here, he says that's done...are you ready to move forward and rebuild your marriage

seems like your MC is pushing you "to get over it" big difference from what I mean here.

You don't just get over it, you have to work through it.

heartache101 posted 11/19/2013 14:59 PM

I hate talking to someone and yes I hate it when all they can do is whine about how wronged they were by someone in the past. I really get my panties in a knot when it is a 30+ year old cryin about freak high school etc. etc...Seriously grow up!
Now when it is a relationship that has been wronged I think it is a little different. But yet we have to move past it. There has to be an end to the past and a beginning for a future.
I find my FWS lives a lot in who has wronged him in the past etc. etc. One of these days I am really gonna unload on him!

karmahappens posted 11/19/2013 15:02 PM

I find my FWS lives a lot in who has wronged him in the past etc. etc. One of these days I am really gonna unload on him!

My father in law still talks about being screwed out of an inheritance from 30 years ago...

Drowninginitall posted 11/19/2013 15:04 PM

Yes, I love my C, but she is telling me to let it all go. I have a recent DD, NC was (I think) only really established about 2weeks ago and most answers from my H have been dragged out by me and my discoveries. I'm still way too emotional and reeling from everything to be rushed into letting it go. We're hoping to R, and DH seems to be putting in the work. Shit, why do I feel it's all on me as the BS??? Once NC and trust is established by transparency, empathy and remorse, then I can begin to let the bad go. May be years, may be months.
My C (she's also our MC) feels by carrying that and speaking to my WH about the A I'm on a hamster wheel and can't hop off to heal and build a strong marraige. It sucks, cause I thought we had one when I was trusting, giving and a loyal faithful wife with a great sex life with her H.

Thanks for everyone posting their insights and experiences to this thread!

ILINIA posted 11/19/2013 15:09 PM

Thanks karma! I have been obsessively checking the Positive Reconciling" looking for hope, it has been really quiet lately, so please keep posting!

rachelc posted 11/19/2013 15:21 PM

It's my feeling that therapists urge us to move on too soon. It DOES have to be worked through. This is trauma and there is a grief process to work through. A loss of innocence to mourn.
The only ppl I talk to this about are my IC, hubby and here. Occasional blasts to my girl posse but hardly at all anymore.
Yet it still weighs heavy on my heart

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