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pizzalover posted 12/11/2013 07:31 AM

Things had been going pretty well lately. I’ve been feeling close to BH and I’ve been really enjoying us spending time together. Last night, however, Monday night was a very bad night. I had had my IC and I was just talking about some of the topics that I have been working on with my IC. My BH started to ask me again why I did this. It’s been almost 11 months, and I still don’t have a handle on all of my reasons. I have been exploring with my IC my deep sense of emptiness that I have – that nothing seems to fill it. I gave myself to many men, especially in college, trying to connect, but only being used. I know I have said this before, but at 15 I lost my virginity to a 19 year old who really only wanted me for sex. Why else would a 19 year old want to be with a 15 year old.

I was telling my BH that when I was having an affair I knew that what I did was wrong, to which he replied “If you knew it was wrong, you wouldn’t have done it. It only matters that your needs were met.” I was crying a lot during our discussion to the point that my insides hurt.

My BH shuts down when I cry. He has always been like that. Before the A, he would tell me to stop crying if I was. It made him very uncomfortable, especially when it was in public. I have always been an extremely emotional person and I wear my heart on my sleeve. Obviously I have been crying a lot throughout the last 10 months since discovery. I cry at the drop of a hat. I can’t control my emotions. My BH has said to me in the past, “Where were the tears when you were fucking this loser? Why weren’t you crying when you went over to their house? You went there gleefully!” I don’t know why in those times I wasn’t vomiting or crying. I know I had a lot of psychosomatic reactions to my infidelity – night sweats, paranoia, stomach pain, crying spells in private, sleepless nights, bad dreams, excess alcohol consumption BUT I STILL CONTINUED THE MASSIVELY DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOR. My body and mind were obviously screaming at me to stop, but I pushed all of the signals away. I hid them from BH. He never saw the pain and anguish I was in about what I was doing. I often felt like I was in Poe’s Tell-Tale Heart – that everyone must have known what I was doing. I should have revealed and not been a coward. I should have left that room that first night. I am trying to control my crying – he says that tears don’t do any good. I am not trying get sympathy from him. It is just all of my emotions flow out in tears. My tears have come at bad times, even before the A: in front of my 3rd grade students, in front of my psycho ex-principal, almost in front of angry parents at conferences, etc. Tears haven’t benefited me well. I don’t think I know how to express myself WITHOUT tears. I wish I could stop. I wish I could have a rational, logical conversation about my actions WITHOUT crying. How do I do that? I lead with emotions and not logic. I want to be more logical instead of emotional. Emotions haven’t really been successful for me in life.

Another thing that my BH said to me the only reason that someone would engage in an affair is if they were extremely dissatisfied with their relationship. We had problems but a lot of happiness. My infidelity is a deeper symptom of deep rooted problems in me, not about if I was dissatisfied with him. Yes, we had problems, but NONE OF THOSE PROBLEMS JUSTIFY MY ACTIONS. Any opinions on this?

[This message edited by pizzalover at 7:32 AM, December 11th (Wednesday)]

Brandon808 posted 12/11/2013 08:22 AM

BH here and a few things occur to me. First, whenever I saw my ex (or any previous gf) cry I would try to provide comfort. For as long as I can remember that was how I was taught to handle it by seeing it done that way and by direct advice. Perhaps when your BH sees you cry he doesn't see it (on a gut-level) as you expressing your emotions as much as you "asking for help/comfort". That is not to say that you are asking, just that he may be conditioned to feel that way and doesn't know any other way to process it when you cry.

Secondly this...

Another thing that my BH said to me the only reason that someone would engage in an affair is if they were extremely dissatisfied with their relationship.
...comes across like your BH wanting to know what was wrong with the M and more importantly what you were dissatisfied with about him. He's not blameshifting to himself yet he is. I doubt he thinks of it that way. I just think that maybe he needs/wants this to be a problem he can at least participate in fixing. Because if he can do something to fix it then he won't feel helpless.

He's probably having a hard time wrapping his head around it because it defies logic. He cannot make sense of things and being patient while you work through these issues can be difficult. It lends to the feeling of powerlessness.

Also, he may have his own thoughts (or deep fears) about why you did what you did and is waiting to see them disproved or validated.

If he isn't in IC himself then he should go, if for no other reason than to give him an outlet. You recognize your own issues drove your behavior. You're not blameshifting which is a strong step imho. That's good. Many BS readily accept some (or most) blameshifting because then it makes them feel it is a problem they can solve. "If I do x, y, and z then WS won't do that again. Whew! Problem solved. I feel better now!" Emphasis on the 'now!' part. It takes patience to wait while a WS figures these things out. It means taking a step back too. It means acknowledging those are issues out of their (i.e. the BS) control.

You cry and that's how you express yourself. If you don't need/want your BH to comfort you and just want to vent those emotions then let him know that. Maybe even work out a signal. A phrase or a gesture. I can tell you that if you cry where others can see you your BH probably feels pressured to step in as most people would look on him as being thoughtless for not helping.

pointofnoreturn posted 12/11/2013 12:40 PM

It's okay to cry. Right now, his emotions are hectic, and given your actions it is a wonder why you cry now. Not to invalidate your feelings, of course, but being that you betrayed him, it may be difficult for him to see your emotions as genuine.

The important thing is that you are there and you are willing to be vulnerable to your boyfriend. Consider in a way that he is being vulnerable too. Even if his name calling and insults hurt, please stay strong. That doesn't mean don't cry, that just means try by any means possible to endure it. Eventually, he may finally cough out all the poison you put in him. I guess just think of it like that?

Just a side note, but if it ever became physical, don't stand for that. What you did was horrible, yes, but you don't deserve to be hit for that. Not saying he did, but just making sure you know there's a limit.

Darkness Falls posted 12/11/2013 14:07 PM


["If you knew it was wrong, you wouldn't have done it."

This is not necessarily true. I myself knew cheating was wrong...I did it anyway because I didn't CARE that it was wrong.

"It only matters that your needs were met."

Truth. For me too, and it sounds like for you...the right or wrong didn't matter; only that we were getting what we wanted.

I disagree with your BH that someone ONLY cheats if they are extremely dissatisfied with their relationship. Again, I'm an example. I was not extremely dissatisfied with my M, yet I cheated anyway.

My opinion is that the vast majority of people cheat simply because they want to and they feel they can get away with it. All the "why"s and "how"s behind it are fine to a point, if it helps one identify and fix pathology or deep psychological issues (which admittedly many of us have), but I believe that just as important, if not more so, is developing new and healthier ways of existing, coping, relating to others, etc.

My whys all boiled down to one thing: I wanted to and I didn't care about anything but what I wanted. Disgusting, but there it is. The work I've done over the past nearly 4 years has been less about the "why and how did I get to that point?" (although that was certainly explored) and more about "what am I going to do to ensure I never get to that point again?" One of the answers to that has been to commit to being a certain type of person and choose every action carefully to personify that.

It doesn't come naturally to me. I have to work at it, and sometimes I slip. But I make progress every day, and I'll bet you're making progress too, even if it feels as though you're spinning your wheels.

WalkinOnEggshelz posted 12/11/2013 17:59 PM

I can definitely relate to crying. Throughout our M, my BH and I created a dynamic. We would begin to discuss something uncomfortable, I would cry, he would back off. End of discussion. Nothing ever got resolved that way. I didn't realize it at the time, but I have used crying as defense mechanism. Like Brandon stated, My BH felt he needed to comfort me when I was crying. You say your BH 'shuts down'. That may just be your perception of what he is doing. He may in fact, be doing so because he wants to avoid seeing you hurting. If the discussion ends then you can stop feeling bad.

After DDay my BH knew he had to push through the tears. He was no longer going to stop the discussion because I was in a pool of tears. The dynamic we had created no longer worked for us and we needed to create a new one. I still cry when the situation is emotional. But the difference is the crying doesn't halt the progress we need to make anymore. Perhaps you can discuss this with your BH and let him know that no matter how many tears are falling you want him to carry on the discussion so the two of you can make progress together. It's ok to cry. But you need to push through the tears.

As far as the actual discussion? Of course you knew what you were doing was wrong. You chose to do it anyway. That's the why you need to figure out. Of course you were being selfish. But why? What were you telling yourself every time you went there 'gleefully' that made it alright for you? Because your husband is right. You did go there willingly (and I would bet gleefully), it did only matter that your needs were met.

I would be willing to bet that his frustration not comes from a place of hurt but also because there is a resistance to owning your actions for what they were. If there is a bit of defensiveness on your part and any kind of lack of ownership, he will become angry. But I can tell you from experience that it subsides greatly when you can look at your actions and say, yes. I was solely thinking of myself and did not acknowledge your feelings in the matter what so ever. Or, I did acknowledge your feelings but it didn't matter enough at the time to make a difference. It's a blow but probably closer to the truth than you crying and telling him how distraught you were and sick over what you were doing. I mean really go back and look at your thought process and then own it. I guarantee he will be upset about what he hears but have more respect for that than sugar coating.

Pay less attention to the crying in general and more attention to the motivation behind it.

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