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Tis the season to feel....yucky (BS and WS needed, bit religous)

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knightsbff posted 12/6/2013 12:31 PM

So much has been going on lately and things have been tough. I really feel like I need some fresh perspective on how to refocus my efforts and my thinking. I have a hard time getting my thoughts out here clearly and concisely like some of you guys. Please be patient with me.

My past relationships trigger him. They always have but even more since d-day. I am his one and only but he is not mine. He saved himself for marriage in keeping with our religious beliefs. I joined this church at 27, before we dated, and had already been a serial monogamist for years with one failed marriage and a 3 year old child from that when we started dating.

Now anything that makes him think of a previous relationship of mine triggers him. The states I went to HS in trigger him because I had boy friends in HS and first had sex at 17. The place where an ex-boyfriend used to live triggers him. The house I used to live in triggers him. Sports trigger him. The college football team we both love triggers him now because I had boyfriends when I attended there.

Some of these things triggered him before the A. Throughout our marriage he would make comments like, "all your old boyfriends..." Or he would react to any mention of my DD's father. Or any good HS or college memory (never about a prior relationship) I happened to talk about. This hurt. I felt judged as not being good enough because I had prior relationships. I would react angrily. He knew I had prior relationships before he married me. His reactions came from pain too but I didn't understand that at the time. I just felt judged and like I was being punished for things I had done before meeting him. I refused to discuss any prior relationships. I said at the time that those things didn't matter and I wasn't willing to let him judge me anymore than he already was. I know now that I was holding on to guilt and shame and hurt over prior relationships and it was painful to think or talk about those parts of my life.

He interpreted my refusal to discuss these things and my angry reaction to his comments or attitude about my past as me holding on to or protecting fond memories of past relationships. We didn't understand each other at all. I think he was also having some thoughts of being compared to past lovers, although I never said anything to that effect.

After d-day he demanded transparency about all my past relationships. He started asking questions like:
Have you ever had a one night stand?
Have you ever had a threesome?
Have you ever...

Close to d-day I was desperate to do anything he asked of me so I started trying to answer his questions. This caused me to think of things I had purposefully not thought of for years. Think CSA. I had an big scary anxiety attack and seriously considered a quick suicide as an escape from what I was feeling. He recognized I was not doing well and put away the knives and guns and refused to leave me alone. I found a p-doc and IC.

I'm working on it. But IC is on hold for now. He started IC for EMDR but he has also stopped IC. He doesn't think the EMDR is the answer to his triggers and mind movies. He thinks time will take care of everything. I disagree.

My dad has been visiting. He's been here for two weeks (left this morning). My dad is annoying. He likes to push buttons. He has a talent for triggering BH. He brought up my ex in convo because we were talking about training my dog and ex had trained sea lions at one time. He just said he knew a guy who had trained sea lions and they would bite you on the butt if you turned your back. H knew who it was and was triggered. We were driving and H was triggering at a location we were passing. Dad had to mention the location and ask what it was. I wonder if he sensed H's reaction to the location and his verbal diarrhea kicked in... Any way, the past two weeks have been rough. I don't think dad does it out of malice. I think he's clueless. At least I hope that's it.

BH has been so angry and so miserable lately.

He has been asking "why me, why did I have to be the one to suffer?"

I thought I understood that he was back to blaming himself somehow for my A. So I told him it wasn't him it was me. I was broken and screwed up and made these disastrous choices for all of us. But then he asked "but why did it have to be me?"

I had to think about that for a while. But I feel like it's because God loved me enough in spite of the atrocities I would commit that he allowed me to meet and marry a wonderful man who was strong enough. And God loved him enough too. He is horribly hurt and did nothing to deserve it but he is growing and learning and so am I. I have to believe that in the end it will be worth it. That we will be stronger and better and our M will be stronger and better, not because of what I have done but in spite of it. I don't mean that my A was God's will by any means. I think we could have found another way to grow and learn and improve our M. But my horrible choices brought us down this path and I was blessed with a strong, wise, loving H. I believe That with God's help I'm becoming the W my H deserves. God allows bad things to happen to good people. My H is a good person. He can survive this disaster and come out scarred but stronger. Right?

But in the meantime things a just so so hard. When I started this post I was feeling pretty hopeless. I think I've talked myself into some hope.

Here's something else I am feeling seriously yucky about and I haven't sorted it out in my brain yet.

My birthday was this week. Christmas is coming. And our anniversary is right after Christmas.

BH has been doing a lot of shopping for me lately. I told him not to worry about it. I'm truly happy to have him with me working on R. That is the biggest gift of all. But he was determined and he has been buying gifts for me. He gave my birthday and anniversary gifts to me early because he wanted me to use them. And on my b-day he gave me a very sweet card. It brought tears to my eyes. I know it was hard to find the right one and not just finding one that was appropriate but reading and dismissing all the one that are no longer appropriate because of what I've done. It must have been painful and tough. Yet he did it. That's how he is.

I'm grateful and guilty and ashamed. I'm grateful for how hard he is trying though I'm not certain it's the best thing for him. I'm guilty that I've turned all these special occasions into a painful nightmare for him. And I'm ashamed that I made the choices that have made me a wife that so many cards will never be right for again. Words like "trust, faithful, always, through the years..." They really can't go in a card to me anymore. Receiving gifts and cards from him and even my kids who don't know is uncomfortable... My MIL gave me a sweet card too. I felt ashamed. She said some nice things in church about how I had taken care of her when she was sick and how she was grateful for me and I was embarrassed because she doesn't know what I did to her son and if she did she would hate me.

Is this a pity party?

[This message edited by knightsbff at 1:33 PM, December 6th (Friday)]

SandAway posted 12/6/2013 15:01 PM


No it's not a pity party - And if it is, who cares! Writing is very therapeutic and when you have a safe place to write, it is even more helpful.

You have a lot going on now and having your dad there for 2 weeks (a long time) didn't help at all. It sounds like things will be a bit better after the New Year. Hang in there.

As far as the jealousy about past relationships - there is really nothing you can do about that. Your BH had a problem in the past dealing with them and I am sure it even more difficult for him now.

Maybe you can squeeze in a date night, just the 2 of you.

One thing that will make you both smile and laugh together will be when you get a big 'ol stack of glitter filled SI Christmas cards! It is so much fun! Last year was our first time participating and the cards arrived a month or so after our first Antiversary. We really needed those laughs!

And Happy Belated Birthday!!

[This message edited by SandAway at 3:06 PM, December 6th (Friday)]

knightsbff posted 12/6/2013 16:33 PM

Thanks SandAway,

We are actually getting ready to leave for the Christmas Card Elf Party now. The party is tomorrow night but we are checking in to the hotel tonight and checking out Sunday.

The in laws are keeping the kids for us. They keep asking why we are going away for the weekend. I finally just told them we are visiting friends.

We're nervous though...we have never been around anyone except MC, IC, and clergy who know.

SandAway posted 12/6/2013 18:15 PM

That is awesome! I am so jealous; We would love to be elves!

Have a GREAT time!

(I would be nervous too)

Strength to you both!!!!

authenticnow posted 12/6/2013 18:18 PM


You are carrying a lot of burdens on your shoulders. I hope you find time to take a breath and remember that you are a valuable and worthwhile person. The thing that struck me the most about your posts---well, two things---one is that your H knew about your past when he married you. You had a child and you didn't hide that he wasn't your only. You can't change that and it doesn't make you a bad person.

The second thing is what your MIL said about you in church. You took care of her when she was sick, what a kind, caring thing to do. You are a kind, caring person.

Our As don't define us. We are a sum of many, many things. We make good choices and terrible ones. What I tell my kids is that it's the lessons we take from the bad decisions and painful experience that counts.

I hope you can practice being kind and gentle on yourself. I'm so glad you're going to be an elf in TX this weekend! I think you'll be so uplifted by being with other SIers, and I think it's perfect timing for you and H.

WalkinOnEggshelz posted 12/6/2013 18:24 PM


We will be there too! Part of the reason we are excited to go is to actually be in a room with people who know and understand what it is we have been going through. To us, we feel it will be comforting. Not to mention, to get to meet the people responsible for putting together such a wonderful place for support of those suffering from infidelity.

I think it will be very festive and fun! I look forward to meeting the two of you!

Take comfort in knowing that with time (yes, that dreaded word) things can and will get better. Hope your travels are safe and we will see you tomorrow!

plainpain posted 12/6/2013 18:49 PM

I am so sorry for your pain. My H and I have worked through a lot of things, and all of it has been through the lens of our faith. I hear you use the word 'shame' quite a bit, and I can understand it because my H also experiences that. It's a horrible, crushing emotion, and I hate that he feels it sometimes. Other times, I'm so glad that he does because it is a true sign that he fully understands the depth of what he has done.

I have asked God the same questions your H has asked - 'Why me? What did I ever do to deserve this?' It's a natural question, but I'm not sure there's any satisfying answer. Parents who lose a child in a school shooting - what did they do? Nothing. Sometimes we suffer greatly because of other people's choices, because of other people's brokenness. We all have heart crushing burdens to bear in life, and what matters is what we do with those burdens. How do we let them shape us, do we rage against the darkness, do we allow them to make us bitter or better? I am taking the devastation my H inflicted upon me and I am trying to channel it so that I can find the value in it. That is redemption - buying back the thing that was pawned. I know my H has experienced what it feels like to be loved unconditionally, for the first time in his life. I know that my forgiveness and my love have been healing for him. That is awesome - it is something to be thankful for - but it is not the answer to 'why'. There will never be anything that will make me say that it was a good thing he cheated on me. God didn't sacrifice me for my H's wholeness, you know?

I don't have any advice for you, but I hope that this Christmas season brings you deliverance from shame, and that you are able to see yourself as more than the choices that you have made. You are precious and valuable, and there is great purpose to your life.

AML04 posted 12/6/2013 19:56 PM

I just wanted to say the fact that you understand how painful it is for your H to pick out a card says a lot for the kind of person you are now. That really touched me.

knightsbff posted 12/6/2013 20:18 PM

Thank you for your reply.

Our As don't define us. We are a sum of many, many things. We make good choices and terrible ones. What I tell my kids is that it's the lessons we take from the bad decisions and painful experience that counts.
I try to remind myself of this pretty often. I really thought I had kicked the shame but it seems I'm still dealing with it. I didn't realize I had allowed it to creep back in so strongly until I read these replies. My IC was working with me on being kind and gentle to myself. I will practice more.

I'm looking forward to meeting you guys too! I think it's going to be fun and in a way relaxing to be around others who understand. Eeewww! We just ran over a possum...poor possum.

Thanks for your reply.

God didn't sacrifice me for my H's wholeness, you know?
My H has said to me that he feels opposite to this, that he was sacrificed for my wholeness. I know it's not true and I think he knows it too ( I hope), but it's how he feels. I'm having a hard time understanding this.

I know my H has experienced what it feels like to be loved unconditionally, for the first time in his life. I know that my forgiveness and my love have been healing for him.
This! It's sad but true. My BH stayed. He could have/should have left me or kicked me out. He loves me. He treats me with respect and kindness. I was so confused by it. He stayed with me...he still loves me...what now???

I still have plenty of work to do but I do see that I have worth. I feel it. I'm better about this than I ever have been. I still have a ways to go on this part apparently..

knightsbff posted 12/6/2013 20:19 PM

Thank you.

plainpain posted 12/6/2013 21:11 PM

My H has said to me that he feels opposite to this, that he was sacrificed for my wholeness. I know it's not true and I think he knows it too ( I hope), but it's how he feels. I'm having a hard time understanding this.

I think that when we love deeply, we all have this feeling like we would 'die for' the other. Who ever really gets the opportunity to test or prove that? For the BS there is some element, maybe, when we see that the WS is truly repentant and actually changed, healed and even set free from a lifetime of inner struggle through our forgiveness or our acceptance of them, we want to feel it as a gift. Rather than having our lives 'stolen' from us through the A, we are able to make an offering of our lives, because we love. It shifts the power, and eases the pain. I relate to that.

I, too, got teary when you were talking about your H looking for a card. That you would recognize that speaks volumes.

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