"I think if we are going to have any chance at this R, and if I am every going to feel connected with this man again, then I am going to have to risk my heart. It's just SO very, very hard when he has broken my heart... HOW to do that? How to be vulnerable? When my brain, my logic, is screaming at me not to trust him. So very hard to do."
Boy can I relate to that! How DO we do that? Just blind trust, throw all the eggs in the basket again and go for it? FOr not to do that is to keep ourselves from real love and connection that we yearn for and our relationship at an arms length....
It is all about forgiving, accepting, being willing to move on and let it go to the past and remain there, like so many other things....but man this is hard.....
[This message edited by morethantrying at 3:35 AM, December 27th (Friday)]
that said, I believe many on here are living in a "less than" marriage, for many reasons - kids, finances, length of marriage, and that is ok too.
There is no way I can be that vulnerable again when my husband did this twice. However, I could maybe cobble together a good enough marriage. Time will tell I guess.
Am I missing out on something - yes. However, my self-preservation is more important than my love life, apparently.
[This message edited by rachelc at 6:53 AM, December 27th (Friday)]
me (WW/BS): 48
4 kiddos in mid 20's
“Follow your intuition. Be smart, be brave. Tell the truth and don’t take any shit.”
But HOW to do it????
Pretend none of this horror had happened and your M is whole and good. You are having a romantic dinner with your S. Great conversation and delicious steak. You reach your hand across the table to touch your S and out of nowhere--he/she takes their steak knife and stabs your hand! You are shocked, scared, and wounded. You leave the table to nurse your wounds. Time passes and your S would like to start eating dinner with you again. You timidly start dining with your S but you likely have a lot of anxiety. Soup nights are OK, but if there is a knife on the table you have a panic attack. Wouldn't you need A LOT of reassurance that your S won't be unpredictable again?
It's the shock and unpredictability of infidelity. It makes vulnerability VERY difficult. Just like if we had been stabbed, we go into self preservation mode. No one would blame us for being nervous around someone who had stabbed us....yet here we are in bed with a person who wounded us much more severely than a stabbed hand. Timidly putting ourselves out there in the hope of REAL intimacy and love.
Everyone trying to R is brave beyond measure.
His betrayal of me was not because I didn't shine brightly enough, but because he chose to put on blinders.
I attempted this immediately on Dday, I was willing to R, and despite his months of lies, and betrayal I honestly believed that he wanted to R, and would give it 100%, and would not lie to me anymore. That was foolish, and he broke NC multiple times because he didn't have consequences that really hit home, and I was willing to believe him.
What worked for us? After he was truly remorseful. After I found my strength, and after I was done, I was able to find my voice, and say, I will not trust you, I will snoop, I will checkup, I will do what I need to feel safe, and if that includes hiding money, and protecting myself you have to respect that, because I have to protect myself and my kids, because you are unable to protect us right now in your broken state. You will be ok with this and if you are not theres the door.
Slowly over time after snooping, checking up, and working toward healing the trust slowly very slowly started to come back, as he healed his brokenness, and showed me he was truly changed a little more trust came back, and it took me 2 years to really trust again, and it's never going to be that blind trust it was before, it's more like I trust what he says, and I will watch to see that he carries through, with words and actions matching each other.
So yah you have to be vulnerable to a point, but I really think the vulnerability falls more on the shoulders of the WS to bear, and deal with.
I agree, at some point, it is time to move forward. but not until the WS has done the hard work to repair themselves and the damage they have caused. And not until the BS has healed.
It takes time. To do so, before the hard work and healing has been done, is rugsweeping. Not a healthy way to R, for either spouse.
Im three years out. We both worked our asses off to get to this place in our marriage. Do I trust him 100%? No. That is just not possible. Do I trust that, if he chooses to cheat on me again, will *I* be ok? Absolutely. I've worked very hard to repair the damage his betrayal has caused me.
I kept him at arms length for awhile. I didn't feel I was denying myself real love..I was watching him to make sure he was capable of providing it..and I was waiting until I felt safe enough to become vulnerable. It took awhile..but we made it.
..that feeling you get in your stomach, when you heart's broken. It's like all the butterflies just died.
When my brain, my logic, is screaming at me not to trust him. So very hard to do."
What I struggle with is the discrepency between the loads of a BS post-A vs. the load of the WS at the time they choose adultery.
In our case, like many, my wife choose adultery with hardly any "logic screaming" involved (things in our M were not all healthy, but no smoking gun like adultery was present)....she carelessly followed her apathetic feelings away from our M and into adultery.
There were no strong evidence to do this, no external motivators...it was, as we all know, something within her that made adultery a choice and a temptation that she did not resist. There was no huge emotional push. Her motivation to choose adultery came from within her...and from what I can tell, she had very little struggle with her choice to commit adultery.
In other words....some fWS, like my wife, caved so quickly, under a seemingly painfully light "marital load" to breaking our vows compared to the load a BS is under to avoid doing the same thing post-A.
I get why R is called a "present from the BS to the fWS"...I just wrestle with the facts of the situation (like most of us do). A BS is called to be vulnerable to a KNOWN threat that is a fWS. A fWS is called to be vulnerable to an as-of-yet non-threat.
And, yet, some fWS are so slow to be vulnerable to their BS.
I also get that FOO programing is in-play...but, damn, how much more "safe" can a BS make a fWS feel than the fact that we choose to love them in spite of the fact they fucked another person, damaged our family, their actions costing us $$$ and aging all involved tremendously?
I think this is what is referred to as a BS has limited time in which they can remain in R with a resistent fWS. Some fWS get this and grab the opportunity with both hands (greatest chance for healthy R)....others grab it with one (moderate chance for healthy R)....still others never reach for it (healthy R never stood a chance).
God be with us all.
[This message edited by blakesteele at 10:50 AM, December 27th (Friday)]