Giving my WH the benefit of the doubt, he *only* tried to date other women (purportedly unsuccessfully) for three years, and was in the beginnings of an EA when I caught him by accident. We spent a summer and fall of hell for me, where he was mainly angry and defensive; regretful, but not remorseful. He would say he was sorry, but act angry and frustrated when I was sad. He has started to come around somewhat now, but it's usually under duress, so I don't trust it much.
For example, he finally sent a NC/professional contact email four months after he was caught, and only after the MC gave him a hard time and I chucked his clothes into the front yard. But then the next day, he pseudo walked it back by approaching her and asking her if she had any questions.
Other examples of diminishing: Three weeks ago he "carpooled" with his former EA and another woman to an all day seminar, and was defensive when I accidentally found out (said it was a mistake and argued it was "professional" and said I shouldn't worry because "she's no longer a threat"). One of his boundaries is working with his office door shut (she's in the office next to him) and when I dropped by, it was open. The majority of you suggested he was still active in the EA, but I really think he's got a huge block where he seems unable to empathize with me on his actions. He seems to try, we have a good week, then he does something to diminish it again.
In a nutshell: he still doesn't get it, not really, and I'm considering separation at the first of the year. I just can't handle the pain any more, each diminishment feels like a knife wound, and I am tired of fighting the same fights over and over.
I am thinking about showing him this post. Do you have any advice to give him about "getting it"? Or am I just trying to squeeze water from a rock?
Addendum: I'm not going to show him this post. I can't see the point in doing so.
[This message edited by hpv50 at 7:05 AM, December 14th (Saturday)]
And the anger and defensiveness are not good signs either. You're going to be on this emotional rollercoaster for a while yet and he's gonna have to deal with it since he's the one who bought your ticket and shoved you onto the ride.
And give him NO benefit of the doubt if he even *tried* to date other women (even ONE) after you M. He has no business putting himself on the market when he's in a committed relationship.
And his former (?) EA? She's a threat as long as his boundaries remain at crap level. I read your thread about him carpooling with her (and not telling you) and must admit I have my doubts about there being other passengers. Borders on gaslighting IMO.
As for showing him this post, well, you could but there's no "making" a WS get it. They either do or they don't. Granted, it takes some a while to get it but there's no way to *make* them get it. He needs to feel your pain as his own and if he can't/won't, there's not a damn thing you can do.
All affairs are variations on a theme. No one has 'Beethoven's 5th' to everyone else's 'Chopsticks'.
Do you have any advice to give him about "getting it"? Or am I just trying to squeeze water from a rock?
Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do to make him get it. The only thing you can do is to take the very best care of yourself.
Nothing is going to change until he "gets it" as we say. I realize that you cannot make him get it, but I think you should be realistic as to what he has likely been doing for three years and act accordingly in your decision making.
Would you proceed differently if the truth is that he had numerous PAs for the past three years?
I'm not trying to hurt you more but I think you need to realign your view of what likely really occurred.
[This message edited by sudra at 5:58 AM, December 13th (Friday)]
No, I don't think he gets it. I have posted to you before. I am so sorry you are hurting.
HOWEVER, I do see some growth on your part!
Please celebrate that!
Previously, you were buying into his anger and silly antics and hiding your emotions in the basement! You've come around to seeing that YOU are not the problem in this equation and he is!!!
That is huge and you should be proud!
Start doing the 180. Consider the separation. You still have time to decide, but in the meantime work on the 180 to get your strength about you. And hold to your convictions!
When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves. ~Viktor Frankl
"When you are happy, you can forgive a great deal."
I don't understand people like our wayward spouses. Is this the inability to empathize???
Is this possible it's mainly FOO stuff? He's going to IC but only every couple weeks, and my guess is that he's barely touched on them.
I found this book helpful: How to Help Your Spouse Heal From Your Affair, by Linda MacDonald. It's a quick read. I bought the paperback and read it first, highlighting the parts that were the most important to me. (Trust me, I could have highlighted the entire book!) Then I gave it to WH to read. The book put into words the things that I couldn't. Also, I think it was more meaningful that it came from a "third party." It wasn't me telling him what would help me heal. It wasn't too long after that, that I began to feel like he got it, and was truly remorseful.
Good luck 50.