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Pain And Anger

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My_Name_Is_Alice posted 12/5/2013 00:32 AM

I once read a post on SI where the BH made a spreadsheet of all the things his WW had done that hurt him and that he wanted to forgive. I wish I could remember his username to give him proper credit. I decided to try this myself since I have always been a forgetful person and I always rely on lists to help me remember the things I need to do. My list is up to 57 items, and I haven't even added in the most recent events. I've asked my WH many times to go through this list and answer some questions about each item like what he was thinking at the time and what he thinks about them now, etc. He's never done this. However, he did take the list with him to his last IC appointment, completely unprompted by me.

So here's my real problem. The IC said that he saw so much pain and anger in the list. He's right. I can't even look at the list anymore because it puts me right back in middle of all that pain and anger. That's one reason I haven't added to it. The other reason is, why bother? Three years later I still have all that pain and anger inside of me, and for what? I've paid a 3 year sentence for a crime I didn't commit. And I've gotten no compensation for time served. I know I can't live the rest of my life harboring this pain and anger, but if I just let it all go then it means nothing. It means I was someone else's punching bag for 3 years only to say "That's ok, I'm fine now, let's be happy!" Is there really anything my WH could do that would make it acceptable for me to let that all go? I'm pretty sure I can't just let it go and stay in this M without getting something in return. But I don't even know what anymore. I'm also pretty sure that if I D I would be able to let it go eventually because at least I would feel like I stood up for myself by getting rid of the person that hurt me. But then there's my son....

Is this really just a dealbreaker now? Has there just been too much pain for this M to recover? Would we still have a shot if my WH found real remorse? And if I'm the only one that can answer those questions, how do I find those answers? Time isn't on my side anymore.

momentintime posted 12/5/2013 01:09 AM

Three years and he hasn't addressed your questions? I would say his lack of empathy would be a dealbreaker at least for me. I understand what you mean about letting go....it seems too much like rugsweeping. Like he just waited you out.

How do you know what his IC said about your list? If your WS told you, what was the rest of the conversation. Did he try to avoid further talking about your list using his IC's comments as cover? Did he answer any of your concerns? How do you feel about the conversation..another dead end or some light shining in. Only you can answer these questions. You don't need to tell us but weighing his responses will guide you forward.

Scubachick posted 12/5/2013 01:14 AM

Does your IC see the pain and anger as a bad thing? I wonder why your husband decided to bring the list now after all this time.

RipsInMyChest posted 12/5/2013 06:58 AM

To let go of pain and R, the person who caused it must SEE your pain, VALIDATE your feelings (say that they are justified, reasonable, and expected), take RESPONSIBILITY for causing those feelings, CONDEMN their actions, and APOLOGIZE for those actions. In addition, actions that show remorse and work on oneself to change the thoughts and actions that led to the betrayal.

If you are getting those things consistently and repeatedly, you should be able to let go of your pain and move forward into happiness. So sorry you are hurting. (((Alice)))

RipsInMyChest posted 12/5/2013 07:14 AM

I just read your profile. I am not judging the swinging, but relationships that swing have something like a 90% divorce rate. It is very difficult to maintain agreed upon boundaries. It's like telling a hard core addict that they can have a "little" fix every once in a while. Gently, maybe this lifestyle is no longer healthy for either of you?

My_Name_Is_Alice posted 12/5/2013 11:14 AM

You all ask good questions and I don't have answers for all of them. My list of hurts actually starts with my WH's ONS and then continues through the next 3 years of unremorseful, emotionally abusive behavior. At first, I stayed because this whole mess prompted him to tell me about a incident where he was sexually abused when he was only 8. He kept it hidden from everyone for almost 30 years, and it has caused a lot of deep-rooted emotional problems for him. But after a while of him still not getting help for this problem, I decided I would put everything aside and live as friendly roommates until I feel my son is old enough to handle a divorce (he's only 6 right now). My WH now says he doesn't like that plan and wants to R.

He's been doing things lately that he absolutely refused to do before. He took the list to his IC. He said he wants to answer my questions but he needs help handling the emotions they bring up, which seems reasonable. He posted on SI without me asking him to. He looked up info about healing from child sexual abuse without me suggesting it. It's good that he's taking these steps, and I hope he can heal from his childhood trauma. But I don't want to get my hopes up because I've been burned very badly many, many times.

I guess I'm wondering if I can really R with him even if he does actually do the work now. Will it even matter anymore? I suppose I'll have to just wait and see, but I'm getting really tired of that to be honest.

RipsInMyChest: Your post about how to let go of the pain seems so logical and common sense to me that I just don't understand how my WH couldn't see how simple it would have been. I don't know. Maybe I'm just having a pity party and need to cut it out. As far as the swinger thing, I looked up the divorce rate for swingers and it's statistically the same as the rate for non-swingers. The hard-core addict analogy only works if one of the swingers is actually a hard-core sex addict. If both partners are more like social drinkers, it works just fine. And considering that the vast majority of people on SI were supposed to be in monogamous relationships, I really think what matters more is whether both members of a couple are willing to stick to the promises they make, whatever those promises happen to be.

myeverafter posted 12/5/2013 13:12 PM

Our MC suggested that I read "I Love You But I Don't Trust You: The Complete Guide to Restoring Trust in Your Relationship" by Mira Kirshenbaum. I just started it last night. At one point she referenced another book she wrote "Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay: A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Decide Whether to Stay In or Get Out of Your Relationship". I downloaded the kindle sample, but didn't get a chance to start it. But you may want to look into that book also?

confused615 posted 12/5/2013 13:31 PM

It sounds like you've had enough. I read your profile. He sounds like a serial cheater.

His posts are almost always about the same thing..his niece. When questioned, he doesn't answer (if I missed it,and he did answer the question,I apologize). Did he have an affair with his niece? is he NC with her?

I agree with you..Im not into swinging..but you and your WH were and the two of you had rules in place. he broke those rules...repeatedly. There is more to betrayal than sex...he broke promises,he lied, he turned to other women,etc. You are very much a betrayed wife.

RipsInMyChest posted 12/5/2013 14:25 PM

Alice, I am very sorry if I implied in any way that you were not betrayed because of your swinging lifestyle. You were betrayed in the same way we all were. I was simply posing the question because it seems that your WH may not be capable of respecting the boundaries....which makes him more like an addict than a social drinker. That he still doesn't get the betrayal after three years means that he may not respect your boundaries in the future. You need to protect yourself. (((Alice)))

My_Name_Is_Alice posted 12/5/2013 16:28 PM

I guess reading from my profile it does look like he's a serial cheater. The weird thing is, my profile only covers the time of our marriage since his ONS. Before that, he didn't go chasing around after other women at all.

I was curious if almost all of his posts were about his niece, so I looked back at them. I counted 3 out of 14. He didn't have sex with her, but there were things that happened that shouldn't have. It's a long story. I still get angry about it, which is why it still comes up. He has had NC with her for months and never talks about her. My problem is he is NC with her because her dad moved to a new state and has NC with anyone in the family now. So it's not like my WH stood up for me and went NC with her because I asked him to. She went NC with him.

I agree that my WH is more like the drug addict than the social drinker, but I didn't know this until 3 years ago. I assumed that, like me, he meant what he said when we agreed to our boundaries. And we agreed to monogamy after his ONS, but you can see how well he stuck to that, so I'm pretty sure I would have ended up on SI no matter what he agreed to on our wedding day.

I hope I didn't sound snappy about the swinger thing. We had an MC who basically told me his A was my fault because I agreed to swinging. We don't see her anymore, but since then it's a triggery subject for me. I actually enjoyed the swinger lifestyle, but I no longer trust my WH to stick to our agreed-upon boundaries, so we don't do it anymore. Just another one of my punishments for his crime.

I think I will look into those books. I've heard them mentioned before but I think I've been afraid that they will show me just how done I really am. I just didn't want it to end this way. This sucks.

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