Do you tell outsiders that you are a WS?
If so, how do they react? More often than not I have been told "everyone makes mistakes" or " we all have skeletons in our closets".
I have never experienced anyone yelling at me or being rude to me when I share this....not to my face anyways.
What about you?
We did eventually tell three people we're close to but only well into our healing. The reaction was minimal. More or less an, "Oh, ok." As well as the "We are all humans and we all make poor choices at different points in our lives."
I've told others since we separated if bluntly asked and I'm honest about it. I'm not proud of what I did and its not who I am. If someone chooses to not like me for it then so be it.
"You must try to generate happiness within yourself. If you aren't happy in one place, chances are you won't be happy anyplace." Ernie Banks
[This message edited by Bdell at 9:12 AM, January 6th (Monday)]
Knowing what I know now, if I met somebody and found out that they had cheated in a relationship, I would definitely not become involved with them. I would treat them like a recovering addict or somebody who has had an STD, or convicted felon. Meaning that I realize that this was past behavior, but would never completely trust them, until I was certain that they had earned that trust. I don't see how any WS can expect otherwise.
If we had D and I entered a new relationship, I don't doubt at all my past would be an issue. I've seen arguments from both sides. Some people say, "Once a cheater, always a cheater." Others say that if they would have a relationship with a FWS that has done the work to become healthy. Because they would be a safe person.
To each their own.
Hope your wife can do what it takes. Good luck to you both.
Sorry for the t/j Alyssa.
I ended up telling a few carefully selected friends. I needed someone to talk to--it was stressing me out too much to keep it all inside and not have an outlet. Those friends all knew WH and are all supportive of our decision to R. Also, two of their husbands apparently already knew a bit. I'm sure those friends look at him/us a little differently now, but they don't sit there and judge him. I think they realize that he's not bad--just his behavior.
I did not tell friends who I thought would urge me to D, not my family.
The people we told were very supportive. Helped us see the logical side of things or at least a different perspective.
[This message edited by Simple at 6:42 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)]
True love is harder to come by than soul mates. True love requires work.
Ignorance can be cured with knowledge. There is no cure for being an idiot.
All of the people we told have been really supportive, of both of us. One person in particular has kind of become our -- for want of a better word -- marital godmother, checking up on us and including us in things, letting WH know that he's still considered a dear friend. Her love and support, however, is conditional on him fixing things.
Given all of that, I was pretty amazed when WH told me a while back that he'd shared this with another friend of his, because he felt like they were close enough and it didn't seem right to not tell him. That seemed to me a really important step -- the idea that friendship and transparency went hand in hand.
I think all of this has made me think a lot about community. I'm not the least bit religious, but I do think about how marriage, in many religions, is about the community witnessing a vow. Marriage isn't just a vow, it's a vow made publicly. A Jewish ceremony -- the one I'm most familiar with -- has four men holding up the chuppah -- that's the awning that people get married under. While it's supposed to symbolize the home, it's also held up by loved ones from outside of the home. And there's other stuff in the ceremony that references the need of the community to support families.
Of course, communities don't alway behave in this idealized fashion. People can be horrible and petty. I was pretty disappointed in one of WH's oldest friends, who basically couldn't deal with WH not living up to who he thought WH was. I must have spent over an hour on the phone with him one night consoling HIM -- "how could he do this? He's such a sweet, good person!" Ugh.
Bit of a ramble. Bottom line, I've been heartened by the level of support I've received, and I think WH has been too. Good night, all!