Our relationship lasted 5 and a half years. No marriage, but we lived together for 4 years, moved together half way across the country for school/work, and discussed and planned our future. I thought the only difference between us and a married couple was a signed piece of paper. I was making money and she was in debt/loans. Although we split a lot of finances, I picked up all the monetary slack.
We had our ups and downs. Some more serious than others, with blame lying at both our feet for the small things and the big things. We loved each other and worked through a lot, but by the end of 2012 we were growing distant. We had decided to split, initiated and pushed for by her. After over a month of finding a new place to live, setting things up, and being about to walk out the door--we decided we couldn't do it. We loved each other so much and knew our relationship had so much potential to be blissfully happy again.
Initiated by her, we reconciled. I gave up my new apartment, we really worked through some of our long term issues, and we rededicated ourselves to our relationship. We were in separate demanding graduate school programs, but we really made progress. We seemed to really get back to a place where we were really happy with each other. We explored our relationship goals and outlook, our sex life, our own personal interests, our shared hobbies, our families and friends. We had regular date nights, went on vacations, worked on house projects together, and really tried to enjoy each other's company. Things were not perfect, but they were constantly improving. It seemed to me that we had really opened healthy lines of communication and were enjoying the best, most promising phase of our relationship.
In the late fall, things began to pile up for my WS (I still can't believe I am calling her that). She had extremely demanding rotations (think med school), she was spending most of her free time prepping for her licensing exam, writing applications, going on interviews, etc. During this time she made some new friends at school. Other students with whom she had been on back to back rotations with (about 6 weeks). I was excited for her because she didn't have a lot of "fun" friends from school. They went out for drinks several times after work and after their second rotation they all went out to our nearest big city to celebrate finishing their rotation. (no significant others invited, but in retrospect I think I was the only one not invited)
I supported her through all of this. I picked up chores around the house, spend extra time with our dogs so they weren't neglected, tried to make her meals often, give her a comfy quite place to study, supported her new found friendships, edited and drafted parts of her applications, and tried to always lend a hand when she was in a hurry. I tried to go out of my way during this time to show her how much I cared: if she went to bed early I would usually lay with her until she fell asleep, I would--almost daily--send her emails full of cute pictures and funny links, and I would text her regularly just to see how her day was going.
Both our families where coming to spend Christmas with us. I took the lead in decorating the house, prepping activities, and planning the family get together. In the days leading up to Dec. 25th, some of her family got caught in a huge winter storm and cancelled at the last minute. I entertained her brother while she had to work and I tried to make sure he got to do everything he wanted. (never been to our area of the country) On Christmas day we all went into the big city for most of the day. I left early to head home and start cooking the holiday meal and to be around for my families arrival. She returned a little late, drunk, with her brother. The evening went alright, although she was maintained a pretty good buzz/drunkenness through the whole affair. We ate, talked, exchanged presents and everyone seemed happy.
After my family left we were getting ready for bed and I told her and her brother (staying with us) to call their family one last time. I felt bad since they couldn't make it into town. I tried calling from my phone, but I had trouble getting through, so she gave me hers. I guess she forgot she still had up a picture message of the OP and his cat. Her chat response seemed oddly friendly towards this guy. I proceeded to call their family and let them all talk. I stood in the other room thinking: who is this guy? why have I never heard of him? He's not a cousin, family member, or old friend I've ever heard of.
After the phone calls I asked her (still in her drunken state): who is this guy?
WS "just some guy, a friend"
BS "you guys seem awfully friendly. How come I've never heard of this guy"
WS "Hes a friend from that new group I've been hanging out with"
BS "Oh I didn't know there were guys in the group you were close with"
WS "Yeah, and he likes me"
BS "What!? And how do you feel?"
WS "I dunno, he's nice. I like him"
This is where it spun out of control. I started getting frustrated and overwhelmed, but I never started shouting. She started yelling at me that aren't I shocked someone could actually like her. I panicked and went on her facebook (we know each other's passwords). I started reading through their messages. Clear, explicit evidence of an EA. I was in shock. I called my father at his hotel and asked him to come pick me up. We spent the night talking, didn't sleep a wink. She drunkenly passed out and never even tried to call.
Over the next day or so I started to learn about everything that was going on from reading her old messages and prying things from her. They had been hanging out regularly for about 6 weeks. They would study together, they went out for drinks together several times (she got dressed up for it), they tried to go ice skating (something I had tried to get her to do several times recently to no avail), and they went on hikes. The time she went to the city for the celebration with friends--she ended up staying at his place...it's pretty close to where we live (although they both claim nothing happened) He had told her he has feelings for her just before Christmas and got her a little present. She had gotten him a small gift in return and left it for him Christmas morning while she was at work. They both claim nothing physical had happened. I think I believe that, but I think is only because I caught them before it progressed to that point. All of this my WS had been lying about, much of it under direct questioning.
Over the next few days I tried to give her space, but I also wanted answers. I tried to be civil, but I struggled with what I learned and with the fact that she continued to talk to him until the weekend when she finally said "it wasn't worth it". She insisted we should split and I said I don't want to reconcile. (I didn't really feel that way) She said she thinks both of us can be happier with other people.
Things went on like that for a few days and we were able to get to a point of surprising civility. She said a lot of things that were really hurtful. Like, even though she didn't think it could be anything serious, she would probably pursue OP now that we are over. I was extremely patient. Away from her I was an absolute wreck. I began IC and my father stayed around a while to help me out. At this point I laid down ground rules that we weren't going to talk about the specifics of recent events, but about only our relationship as a whole. With this and other rules, we set out on a day trip with our dogs. I feel like this was the first time we had a real conversation. She said she is terrified about ending up like her parents: married to the wrong people, have kids, go through a bitter ugly divorce with life long resentment. She thinks she should be with someone who is more similar to her, shares more of her interests. I feel like I have always pushed for us to explore these things, but she has always resisted me. Putting her school work and our home life first. I was okay with that, and surprised she was telling me she wanted something that I had pushed for.
I told her how I really felt. I was angry, betrayed, and abandoned, but I love her. Dearly. I have grown, especially over the past year, into a person that is willing to do whatever it takes to be with her. I'm not going anywhere. It's going to be a lot of work, but I think we can do it and be happy.
She seemed much less volatile and on edge than she had all week. She told me she was confused. She thinks we can be happier with others and is confused by how much I care about her. The next day said she thinks that I care about her more than she cares about me. She doesn't think that's fair.
I had been bringing up counseling for days and she finally agreed she would do it just for my sake. To see if anything was still here, or more likely to help us end this in a healthy manner. I called around all day and found a few experienced people willing to work with our schedules and finances. When my WS returned from work she agreed to see someone with me the next day.
I went out to eat with my father. Clear my head and give her some space. When I returned something seemed off. She said she had been talking to a friend from school. She said after talking to them she's realized she should be allowed to have this OP as a friend even if he likes her. She had already begun texting with him again. As I was trying to talk with her about what was going on she was giggling and emoting at her phone messages from him. We started fighting and my father came to pick me up. She said she can't keep doing this. It had been 8 days already. I should have been moved out by now. I asked her to keep the counseling appointment and she said maybe. She laughed when I said this could take days or weeks. She said if that's the case then things are going to get bad because she is going to be moving on with her life during that time (OPs). She said she can't wait. Life's short.
When I got to my father's hotel she messaged me. She said she was going away for the weekend and putting our dogs in the kennel while she is gone. I asked with whom? She said friends, including the OP. They will be staying at a cottage and going skiing. This stuff between us is making her crazy.
I called her and lectured her. I told her she is running from me. She is scared where our relationship is headed and she is running. I told her I can't wait for her, I won't be on hold. I don't know if any of it sunk in.
I have to now try to get over there and move out while she is gone.
When I go over this I am lead to believe that she IS scared of ending up like her parents. We were in a stressful time and she liked this "new" attention she was getting. It made her feel like there was more out there for her, that she should be happier, that she should feel like that regularly. I think she is scared and running, but what the fuck do I know.
I just don't understand how this is happening. I don't understand how she is just running as fast as possible from our 5 1/2 year relationship. For something that is a few weeks old! The things she does and says make me feel like she values this OP she has known for 6 weeks more than me. I don't understand what OP is doing either. He isn't totally blameless in this. He has known about me but has been trying to win her over. I can't get over my jealousy. OP superficially actually seems a lot like me...that makes it feel worse.
Even if a part of you would want to save your relationship, UNTIL she stops being disloyal, leaving her is the only option you have.
Read up on the 180 and start implementing it with her.
Stop talking to her about anything not directly tied to you leaving and cutting your ties to each other.
Too many WS think in their F'd up state of mind that somehow they will be able to remain friends with the person they stabbed in the back.
Make sure to blow this fantasy up.
Tell her after you split that you want absolutely no contact with her at all.
She has to see that she is truly and COMPLETELY losing you in her life.
She has to see what she is losing to have any chance of snapping out of her infatuation.
Just because she wants to move on without you, doesn't mean that she takes the items that she wants from your relationship.
All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
D-Day: 9/18/09 D-Day#2: 2/19/10 The Marriage Killer: 6/6/11
Heading for D
She has been using your goodness.
You are not going to "love her back".
She is a user.
Split everything. Legally.
You are a great guy, there are literally 10's of thousands of women who would love to have a man like you.
You deserve so much better - tell yourself that.
When she gets back from her little tryst - let her find the place empty of any trace of you.
Find your own place - block her from your phone, go completely dark.
And adopt another rescue furbaby to love.
Your life will be fulfilling and satisfying - let her forever wonder what happened to you.
Your laughter in your happy new life will be your best revenge.
She thinks she should be with someone who is more similar to her, shares more of her interests
It hurts like hell to be rejected in this manner and it takes a lot of courage to do what you are considering; pack up and move on. If you stay it prolongs the agony and you will have to then put up with her cheating, which sounds as if it has only just started.
If there's any consolation, I think she will screw up her next relationship with the OP. She's terrified of commitment and that will poison all her emotional interactions with men. Everything will be fine initially, but when a guy starts to ask her for heart she will start running - to the next OP.
She thinks she should be with someone who is more similar to her, shares more of her interests.
I know I push her and us to explore these interests and expand them into new areas. She always seems to push back towards areas she is more used to and comfortable. For example she loves kayaking and boating with our dogs, but she always scoffs at the idea of use kayaking something a little more adventurous without the pups. It's just so hard to be rejected for things I cannot understand to be true.
I know everyone tells me I will drive myself crazy trying to analyze this, but I feel like I am ready to do anything for this relationship. I am willing to work as hard as it takes and make whatever sacrifices it takes.
She clearly loved me at some point. Deeply I believe. I just don't understand how she can wake up one day and do this.
She was in a 4 1/2 year relationship before I met her (not right before, from high school). She ended that one after a PA, but it had also been after months/years of the two of them breaking up with each other and getting back together.
I really feel like she is running and is afraid of something. I just want to be there with her. I know she has to work through it for herself, but I want to be there for her, and with her when she comes out.
She's already told you she wants out. She's showing you she wants out. Apart from kissing the guy right in front of you what else does she have to do?
Yes you continue to be hurt and the hurt will not go away if you continue to hold on.
Letting her go is the lesser of two pains, give yourself a head start on healing, move out, change your number and go no contact because if she can text the man right in front of you, tell you she's going on a trip with him, then she's lost all respect for you. So time to respect yourself.
I don't think I have been living in (complete) denial. I have been asking her to go see a counselor with me to see if we can work on things or to mediate a more healthy break.
I just don't understand how she can end this so suddenly and expect our lives to have moved on within a week! She says she is at her limit and I am pushing her off a cliff. I think she is just afraid to face her own issues. (Don't worry I've got 'em too)
It is very evident how much you love her. I feel for you and I want you to know that it is her loss....
Best of luck to you.
[This message edited by BeyondBrokenInTN at 7:21 AM, January 3rd (Friday)]
Even when you WANT to end a relationship, it's hard. That explains her lack of action. She's pushing you away as hard as she can so that YOU do the acting.
I know it's hard to take in all at once, to accept that something you believed to be one way is really another. (Trust me on this--I spent over 30 years with a man who led a double life. I really do get it.)
But you need to know:
she ended up staying at his place...it's pretty close to where we live (although they both claim nothing happened)
You can "lecture" all you want. Take it from the Professor (man, could I lecture, post d-day), it won't do a damn thing except cement the Great History Revision she's got going on in her mind. ("No wonder our relationship <insert history rewrite du jour>! He's such a controlling asshole!")
Drop all contact with her while she's away. Go dark. Move your stuff out. If you share a lease, let the lessor know the situation; if possible, have yourself removed from the lease. (It will make it easier to get another.)
If she's committed to reconciliation, she will move heaven and earth to show you.
If you choose to stay, do not have unprotected sex with her after this trip away with her boyfriend. You both require testing (yes, even now--that "nothing happened" sleepover...happened), and it should be repeated at the recommended intervals before you have unprotected sex again.
I'm really sorry for your pain.
ETA: Couples counseling with a person who is actively cheating and unremorseful is emotional suicide. Focus on individual counseling. For both of you, if you stay together. It will take a good while for her to gain the skills and insight necessary to be constructive in couples counseling.
[This message edited by solus sto at 7:27 AM, January 3rd (Friday)]
One day at a time....
In reading your story I kind of got stuck on this:
by the end of 2012 we were growing distant. We had decided to split, initiated and pushed for by her.
She was in a 4 1/2 year relationship before I met her (not right before, from high school). She ended that one after a PA, but it had also been after months/years of the two of them breaking up with each other and getting back together
Now twice doesn't make it a pattern, but it does make you wonder... One thing I wonder is if something had started at the beginning of 2012 with someone else.
I see where you get that she is running from the relationship. But it is possible she'd be running from any relationship, in time. Maybe it is a commitment issue, or maybe she loves the "falling in love" feeling and that is what she equates with love, as opposed to a love nurtured through thick and thin...
There really isn't anything you can do about that though. You can't change her or make her want to change, or make her want to R. You can't love her back. And pointing out her issues as you see them - isn't going to help. If it is an issue of commitment, she won't deal with it until she is ready. I have a feeling you are going to end up being one of her biggest regrets.
All that said - you have to deal with the reality before you. I think trying to hang on is only going to bring you more pain. Moving out while she is gone is a good plan. I'd also go dark on her. MC isn't going to fix this.
What we are saying is spare yourself a lot of pain [and save a lot of pride] by moving on yourself. Don't let her grind your face into the mud until you finally get it. Leave with your dignity intact.
I have a feeling you may love her but she fell out of love with you some time ago; then she went looking for a way out and thats where the OM comes in. Time to cut your losses and go hetres.
I think my friends and family finally have had enough. They still support me and say they would have the ability to move past this if that is what I want and she comes back. I'm still so lost. I just want to spend my life with her.
My father set up plans to rent a truck and storage space. My friends came up Saturday morning and we spent the entire day moving me out. I spent most of the day moving slowly through our place while my friends and family did the work. I had forgotten how much stuff I had from years of building a life with this woman. The place looks absolutely barren now.
Ever since we left my apartment I have been having one long panic attack.
While we were putting things in storage she texted me asking how the dogs were. I asked her when she would be home. After learning later that night she would return I said the dogs will be fine until then. She confusedly asked if I was going to be there tonight. I said no. She asked why? I said I moved out.
She sent me two text messages over the next couple hours: "already" and "did you take all your stuff". I still haven't responded.
I just want her so badly to call me. I just want to hear her voice. Even if she is angry. These 36 hours are probably the longest I have gone in 5 years without hearing from her. I just want her to want me too. At the very least I want to hear an ounce of remorse in her behavior and voice.
I can't stop thinking about two things. Did she spend last night and today having a sex filled romantic get away with the OP. The other thing is that I want her back more than anything in the world.
Why doesn't she call?
She's not calling because she doesn't care about
you anymore. She's not thinking about you. You probably aren't a speck in her mind. She contacted you to ask about the dogs...they have the higher priority to you. You told her that you moved out and she didn't care.
Please, for your own sake, try to stop thinking about when she will call or contact. And an even bigger please, know that if she does contact you under the auspice of "missing" you, it is probably only because things with the OM start to lose their luster. I know this hurts, we all know it.
But you have to look at it like this: be happy you found out her character now, before you were married. She has issues with commitment/monogamy, and that will last after you are gone.
Say she did want to be with you again. She will eventually be over it AGaIN and leave again. Don't be a masochist and set yourself up for that pain, because it will hurt even more that time. do everything to rid yourself of her: changing number if possible, new main email address, or at the minimum, block her. If she truly things she wants
To be with you, she will find a way to get in contact.
She's slept with him. She checked out of your relationship long ago. Sorry.
"This is a story you won't tell the kids we'll never have. Congratulations to you both I hope someway you're happy..."