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Not Exactly Mind Movies -- does this happen to you

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bionicgal posted 12/19/2013 14:43 PM

Ok, so I don't get actual mind movies very often, I get flashes of "Oh, he must've done this" with/to her. It often comes up during physical intimacy - in a particularly nice kiss, I'll think: "Oh, but he kissed her, too." Or, during sex, "Oh, I but he did X with her, too." I get this weird flippy feeling, almost like I "am" her. That sounds kooky, but it is true. Then I have to reorient myself.

People, I hate it, What works? Stop signs? Last night it was like, bam, bam, bam. One after the other. I wanted to be there, in the moment, and I wanted to be doing what I/we were doing. Why, oh why do I get these thoughts? What could they conceivably be pointing to that is helpful? When they were questions ("Oh, I wonder if he did X, ") I thought it would help to ask if they, indeed, did X. It didn't really, so now I know for the most part, and I still can't shake it.

I know it has to do with me wanting to feel special -- and feeling that things were taken from me. But, what do I do?

Any suggestions appreciated.

inshockandhurt posted 12/19/2013 15:03 PM

That happens to me sometimes. The only thing I have been able to do is just try really hard to redirect my thoughts, just force myself to think about something physical, like the way my lips actually feel on his, or the way his arms feel around me. It doesn't always work and that is usually when I end up sobbing. Hugs, wish I had better advice.

IGaveItMyAll posted 12/19/2013 15:32 PM

For me it helped me to ask her exactly what they did together. That way I wouldn't put false things together in my mind and could really process what happened. I did find myself wanting to compete with them as crazy as that sounds. I wanted the lust back in our relationship. But I did find my mind running often. Try and create new memories. I noticed it really subsiding when I started working on my confidence and strength. The GYM has helped me A TON!!!!

womaninflux posted 12/19/2013 15:39 PM

Yes this happens to me. It did not at first when we started having sex again after DD. But now it does for some reason. It helps when I think about her at all to clear my head and focus on my breathing. Inhale count 1, exhale count 2, repeat for a solid minute. Anytime your mind starts to wander, start over. This helps in a lot of situations IRL, too.

I will say my SAWH has a few new techniques since his A, so I have an idea about what they did/how they did it. As far as crazier stuff, I am pretty sure they enacted pornography scenes and talked about masturbation quite a bit via text. And called one another baby.

bionicgal posted 12/19/2013 15:55 PM

IGaveIt - Well, it happens with stuff like kissing, so it really isn't a matter of wondering if they did that. I know they did. Most stuff that triggers me I am sure that they did. I agree about the gym - I am more buff now (that is relative of course) than I have been in years!

I like the breathing thing. . . I will try that. Last night it just seemed the more I redirected, the worse it got. I will try, also, to focus more on just being in my body. Stinks, though. Wondering why this seems worse 6 months out. Mind movies were bad earlier, and occasionally I get a complete break, but this stinks.

IGaveItMyAll posted 12/19/2013 16:19 PM

Yeah it sucks!! 6 months was a hard mark for me I got really angry and spiteful. At that point the numbness started wareing off and I began to get very mad. The reality of it all sunk in i guess. Stay strong. This too will pass.

plainpain posted 12/19/2013 16:22 PM

bionicgal, I know EXACTLY what you are talking about. Yes, it happens to me, too. No advice to offer - just empathy.

BrokenMomof2 posted 12/19/2013 23:21 PM

Happens to me too. Just started going thru it the last few weeks. 99% of the time is when WH and I are being intimate, Im still trying to find ways to push them out of my head. Some nights I get just a couple flashes, and others are bam, bam, bam

WH told me that with the OW it was fast and no emotion involved. So when I am starting to disconnect from the flashes I say so (although usually he can tell and says something before I do) then he stops and just holds me tight until we either fall asleep or I get connected again.

The days I get to the gym arent as bad. WH just bought me a punching bag so on days I need to get some energy out I dont have to haul the kids to the gym with me if he isnt home.

blakesteele posted 12/20/2013 06:18 AM

Not exactly what you feel...but still get disrupted.

One thing I have found is to.....just don't be intimate!!!

okay....lame joke. Seriously.....breathing works well for me as well. Another helpful tip to redirect your mind is to concentrate on one specific part of his body....maybe a freckle on his chest, or his ear....anything to make your focus razor-sharp on one thing, displacing any room to focus on the distractions of mind movies.

This works pretty well for me. TIP: works best if you can focus on a typically non-sexual part of your spouses body. I think this is because I am a man, I know her fAP was keying in on the two key parts of a womans put my focus elsewhere....less risk of mind movies taking over. Occasionally I get caught up in the moment, concentrating on the typical man-attractions and if the mind-movies start then.....pretty much takes me out of the game. But that is happening less and less frequently.

Down side to this technique is it takes away from the intimacy of the moment by really reducing your complete involvement due to narrow-focus. Up side is I am able to physically maintain the ability to be intimate.

Works most of the time.

God be with us all.

FeelingMN posted 12/20/2013 06:46 AM

That would happen to me too, during sex, and I'd have to repeat in my head to think about something else. I remember thinking "Think about baseball, think about baseball!" Don't remember if that worked or not. My mind movies only happen when I'm getting in the shower now which is odd because there was never a shower as part of the A.

I don't know how long it's been from DDay for you but for me as time went on the mind movies got less and less.

FeelingSoMuch posted 12/20/2013 07:02 AM

It happens to me, too. I don't know what to do other than to consciously try not to think about it.

It spoils our best moments -- for me -- because I usually don't vocalize these 'flashes.'

They come when my WW is at her best. When she's being kind or intimate or when she's giving me a nice goodbye kiss before one of us goes to work.

I guess it's jealousy on my part? I certainly feel jealous when I have these flashes.

Like everything else related to the A, they suck.

Glad to see that I'm not the only having them.

Stay strong and thank you for the post.

plainpain posted 12/20/2013 09:08 AM

I get this weird flippy feeling, almost like I "am" her.

^^^ This is the part that frustrates me so much. I don't know what it is, or why it happens. Maybe it's actually something my brain does to protect itself. Maybe it's the results of an explosion - burnt out melted wires crossing electrical currents. It's getting less now, but at the beginning it happened constantly.

Honestly, if my emotional strength is sapped, sometimes I just go with it - some kind of weird aversion therapy. Almost like a role-reversal, where we're the ones having the forbidden tryst and she doesn't know about me. I'm the one with him and she's somewhere else in her bed, lying there wondering what he's doing, who he's with, what I have that she doesn't have, blah blah. It feels more than a little sick, and I'm still completely jealous, but it helps me feel more powerful and less pathetic in the moment. I don't know if it's healthy or not - it feels like it's probably not healthy but it keeps me 'in the game', and I know having sex with him is healthy for me.

Sometimes I just have to stop trying to shove it all out of my head. I don't think it's realistic to expect THAT to be the one place that I can put it out of my head. For me, I mostly try to put my energy into asserting my own dominance over her, whatever that looks like. I say to myself, 'Yup, they did this. Can't have been ALL THAT, because where is she now? Not here.' Again, it helps if I focus less on the thought of them having sex, and more on the thought of her lying alone somewhere, crying and pathetic as she remembers being with him and abandoned by him. It does help somewhat, in my case, to know that he broke her heart.

If I'm 'her', that means she is 'me'... so maybe I just transfer all of my pain onto her and leave myself with the good stuff.

Anyway. It's not like sex was ever some mystical, emotionally intimate experience for us. He's always had vulnerability issues.

bionicgal posted 12/20/2013 09:23 AM

Plainpain - I am so glad I am not the only one who gets the flippy thing. I mean, WTH? I think it must just be some cognitive dissonance/trauma thing. i.e. "They did this, now we're doing this, does that make me her?" stuff. I don't know -- but it is a feeling, not a rational thought process I am going through. Almost like deja vu, but not the same feeling.

Yakamishi posted 12/20/2013 10:12 AM

This is so me. Almost like I'm torturing myself that what we have is nothing special because that road was already paved.... by another contractor....

Coachdig10 posted 12/20/2013 11:10 AM

I play things over and over in my mind all the time. I don't know what they did so my mind goes crazy with everything.

Offhispedestal posted 12/20/2013 11:12 AM

Bionicgal it happened to me the first 6-9 months and reaching
Orgasm ... I would either give up or take forever. What you are describing is not kooky at all! Sometimes during sex we look at each other , kiss etc... And I felt like I was in her body, looking through her eyes. I felt like those passionate kisses were being placed on her lips but I was inside and feeling everything. I felt like I was sick and twisted for thinking this way!!!

The reality for us now is that we have a more honest and open
Intimate relationship. We have gotten to a point that we know exactly what each other wants and enjoy ourselves.
For sometime you feel like you are crazy. Those feelings do fade. I don't know if they disappear completely....I'm not there yet 100%. But now when it does happen mentally "I kick her out of my bedroom" it's like I'm not feeling the anger at the moment and she's nothing more than a pest. So in my mind I kicks her out and tell her "fuck off and get out...and she does"

Oldernotwiser posted 12/20/2013 11:33 AM

I have felt disconnected too, and wondered all that same stuff. For a while I removed me from the intimate times, then I took him out and it felt anonymous. Actually enjoyed that but I want my marriage, not to live in a fantasy. I struggle with the things I know they did, lots of the thoughts came from those things. Recently I am not suffering that so much, The only thing different is that we have been talking more, and we've been much kinder in the talks, and last weekend he described one of the encounters from his first affair. You could tell it was a sketch of it and his tone was as flat as it could be. But, it was what I needed I guess, because she hasn't joined us in my mind since that day. It didn't sound as rushed and one sided as it had been portrayed earlier, and I think there was more honesty in this "edition".

tushnurse posted 12/20/2013 11:55 AM

I think we all struggle with this to some extent, and it comes and goes throughout recovery.

A few things that really worked for me was to get really relaxed before hand, long soak in the tub and perhaps something to get my mind going, a little erotica perhaps.
The next thing was to make it all about me, and my pleasure, this really opened me up sexually and ultimately was a great thing to do for me. I was always focused on being quiet so the kids didn't hear, and worrying about how I looked, and my mind was anywhere but focused on sex. But making it about me, and making me the center of his attention really helped. I focused on the physical aspects of what felt good, and how I felt, with encouragement and feedback we expanded our play a bit more and more.
Now Sexy Fun Time is that, and can be quite an event.

The other thing that worked early on was to talk about the things he was doing that made me think of them, and why, and try to avoid those, or get reassurances from him that his mind wasn't there, or that with me it was much better.

Later when it would happen I would ask myself who is he with now, who did he choose, it was me, and that made me more confident, and often I could picture her being jealous of what we had. That helped.

Lastly it's ok to stop once in a while too. if you can't get it out of your head sometimes you just have to stop, and reassess things. Not finishing will not kill either of you.

This is normal stuff and we all get through it differently, but please know it's normal and talk to your H about it, and how you are feeling, if you don't you can't get resolution.

(((and stength)))

Undone1 posted 12/20/2013 12:05 PM


I am a year and 2months out and I often feel this way during sex. I have felt as though I am above the bed watching them together. My understanding is that this is a symptom of PTSD and something that people who have experienced sexual abuse do to detach themselves from their abuser. This makes total sense to me since our spouses have become our a users in a sense and we have been traumatized by their affair and the aftermath of trying to deal with the shock and pain.

For me recognizing this as PTSD helped me to recognize exactly what was happening. In order to combat becoming detached, I focus on the good physical feelings that my body is having. I focus on my breathing, on the physical touch and after a bit I am back to my reality. It takes work and time to lesson these experiences. At least it has for me. I am still working on the negative feelings I have after sex, when I start thinking I am no good, etc.

Hope you know you are normal!! There is a reason we react the way we do.

blackbirdfly posted 12/20/2013 12:21 PM

Just chiming in that this totally happens to me too. That weird flipping thing is strange and awful.
I'm actually about three years out. It subsided for a while but would get triggered when WH was being especially insensitive or weird.
Now that I've had more TT it feels stronger than ever. Especially because there used to be some things that I could say "they didn't do this" but now I know they did.

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