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Newest Member: Giupeppe (46032)

User Topic: What does it mean to settle, and is it a bad thing?
dbellanon
♂ 39236
Member # 39236
Default  Posted: 9:16 AM, January 7th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

If I'm completely honest with myself, I was probably settling when I married XWW.

We were 20 years old. She came to me. We were good friends, best friends even, but I still hadn't really regained my confidence in her from the time we had tried dating about a year prior, and she had broken up with me.

I remember writing in my journal that as our friendship healed from that breakup, I was beginning to see again why I had allowed myself to have feelings for her before, but also that I considered myself sufficiently wizened against going down that path again.

I even wrote that I suspected that what had made the relationship attractive in the first place had less to do with her particular traits and more to do with her interest in me. No, I reasoned. It was good that we were friends again, but a romantic relationship with her was out of the question.

But then she came to me, probing me about getting back together. And I didn't turn her down. My reasons at the time were couched in all sorts of religious gobbledygook, but if I'm really honest with myself, I think I just didn't have the balls to turn down someone who there, who was available, and who was willing to commit to me. And as I said, we were good friends. She wasn't hard to love (most of the time), and when we committed to each other, I gave my heart to her fully. I loved her without reservation or regret.

So here's my dilemma. While there is a very real sense in which I think I settled, I'm having trouble seeing any connections between that and why the marriage failed. I had reasons that I might have turned her down, but I don't know that any of them had anything to do with why she cheated on me and left me, and even if they did, I don't think they were connected in any predictable way. As far as my own emotional investment in her, I've always believed that love is a choice, and I think that if she had the same attitude (among other attitudes that probably needed changing), we could have had a long and happy life together.

So why is this in "new beginnings?" Because I'm wondering how this should affect my choices going forward. I'm coming to the point where I feel able to contemplate new relationships, and I don't want to settle, but I also don't want to be so afraid of settling that I can't commit.

So what are all your thoughts? What are some of the pitfalls associated with settling. How do you know you're doing it? How do you avoid it? Is it always a bad thing? Discuss.


ME: BH, 29
Her: WW, 28
DD: 5
Married 6 Years.
DDay: Early May, 2013
Divorced

Posts: 243 | Registered: May 2013
StillLivin
♀ 40229
Member # 40229
Default  Posted: 10:05 AM, January 7th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

You asked a lot of thought provoking questions. I started a thread, and erased it. Let me ponder a little while and I'll come back to this with you. Other, more experienced SIers are going to be on soon with interesting perspectives and answers shortly.


I don't need further confirmation of what a fuckwit he is. I already have plenty, thanks very much. -SBB
D: 7/2/2014

Posts: 2556 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: AZ
Nature_Girl
♀ 32554
Member # 32554
Default  Posted: 10:13 AM, January 7th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I settled with my ex. I knew it. I loved him, I wanted to spend my life with him, but I knew that he wasn't a lot of things I had hoped for. And I'd also had several red flags waving already, too.

I'll never settle again. Not even for a dating relationship.


Me = BS (Stay-at-home-mom)
Him = EX-d out (abusive troglodyte NPD SA)
3 tween-aged kids
Together 20 years
D-Day: Memorial Weekend 2011
2013 - DIVORCED!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJgjyDFfJuU

Posts: 10147 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: USA
NaiveAgain
♀ 20849
Member # 20849
Default  Posted: 10:14 AM, January 7th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think I just didn't have the balls to turn down someone who there, who was available, and who was willing to commit to me.
That is a good thing to realize, and should help you with your choices in moving forward.

What are some of the pitfalls associated with settling. How do you know you're doing it? How do you avoid it? Is it always a bad thing?
When you "settle" for someone, you are accepting that person because you feel you can't do any better. The pitfalls are that if something better comes along, you are going to regret settling. You will always feel that you are with someone that isn't what you really wanted.

I would not want to be with someone that settled for me. How embarrassing and humiliating that would be! I want someone that feels I am their top choice, that the moon and the sun revolve around me, and that they know in their heart that they have done well. When you are with someone you consider an equal, you will bring out the best in each other.

LIfe is too short to settle. I am not sure why anyone would want to do that.


Original WS D-Day July 10, 2008. Kept lying, he is gone.
New WS (2 EA's, no PA) 12-3-13
If you don't like where you are, then change it. You are not a tree.

Posts: 15546 | Registered: Aug 2008 | From: Ohio
Dreamboat
♀ 10506
Member # 10506
Default  Posted: 11:24 AM, January 7th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think you are asking the wrong question. I think the questions you need to ask are 1) what traits in her allowed her to be ok with betraying you? 2) in retrospect, did you see those traits when you first got together? 3) If so, did you realize at the time that those traits were the signs of a broken person? 4) What will you do in the future when you encounter a person that shows those traits or other traits indicating that they are broken?

IN my mind, people who "settle" with a partner generally know that the partner is not what they want or perhaps not what they deserve but they are "safe". If you truly loved her and she was what you thought you wanted and deserved st that time, then you did not settle.

HTH


And it's hard to dance with a devil on your back
So shake him off
-- Shake It Out, Florence And The Machine

Posts: 17695 | Registered: Apr 2006 | From: A better place :)
StillLivin
♀ 40229
Member # 40229
Default  Posted: 11:33 AM, January 7th (Tuesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Settling for someone that doesn't make you happy can, in the long run, end up making you more unhappy than being alone could.
If someone just doesn't do it for you, for whatever reasons, time is not going to make that change. Most relationships start off with moonbeams and rainbows because they are new and oh so wonderful. Time takes all of the illusion away. What are you left with, someone that you settled for who is now comfortable and does it for you even less than when you started off.
I can only see unhappiness in settling. Being alone doesn't equate to being unhappy unless you choose for it to do so. Being unhappy always equates to further unhappiness.


I don't need further confirmation of what a fuckwit he is. I already have plenty, thanks very much. -SBB
D: 7/2/2014

Posts: 2556 | Registered: Aug 2013 | From: AZ
heartbroken_kk
♀ 22722
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 2:00 PM, January 8th (Wednesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I'm having trouble seeing any connections between that and why the marriage failed.

Well, me too. I think they are not connected - her cheating was about her later in your marriage, not you before your marriage.

I think you might consider that there is also finding contentment and satisfaction with what you have and recognizing nobody is perfect. You can love an imperfect person, as you proved in your first marriage. That's not a bad thing.

Going forward I think you need to recognize that there is ALWAYS "settling" for the very reason that none of us are perfect. We have to accept flaws in our mates or we will forever remain single.

The question to ask yourself is if you can see whether your are choosing someone whose flaws are in the realm of integrity, or just minor quirks of personality, or other "harmless" - to you - areas. If you settle for someone who lies... well... then there is something wrong with you both.


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1254 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
nomistakeaboutit
♂ 36857
Member # 36857
Default  Posted: 9:38 PM, January 8th (Wednesday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I don't think you should settle, but not settling won't protect you from infidelity.

I didn't settle, at all. I waited until I found exactly who I wanted. I married for the first time at age 49. I had always had a near-phobia of making a commitment as huge as marriage. But, not with her. I was not scared of committing to her. I was truly happy to marry her. During our wedding ceremony I had a few tears of joy that rolled down my cheeks. We then had two beautiful children. I was always proud to have her as my wife. I knew, deep down, that I could trust her and that sense of commitment and trust always gave me a feeling of stability in our marriage, knowing that we were in it for the long run.

And here I am.


Me: BH 58.........Her: WW 45
DD: 8..........DS: 5
Married for six years.
DDay: 12-25-11 Divorced: 7-15-12
...................................
"It's like a nightmare within a nightmare, which in and of itself is a nightmare!"

Posts: 968 | Registered: Sep 2012 | From: U.S.A.
fraeuken
♀ 30742
Member # 30742
Default  Posted: 11:09 AM, January 9th (Thursday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Maybe the question to your answer also depends to a degree on what definition we all have of 'settling'.

To me it means being with a person for the wrong reasons, because I am lonely, afraid of loneliness, want sex, want financial security, because I feel nobody better would be available to me, because I feel I am not worthy of somebody better and so on. Ask yourself if you were to choose that person as your partner if you were in happy, healthy state of mind? If the answer is no, I know, I am settling.

To me, settling does NOT mean lack of acceptance, so factors such as age or looks or little quirks etc that we all have are accepted but that does not mean you are settling for less than you should.

Settling is not so much about the other person, but about how you value yourself and how you stand by your principles and absolute must-haves in a partner.

I hope I am making sense.

[This message edited by fraeuken at 11:09 AM, January 9th (Thursday)]


Temporarily independent with the whole world at my feet.

Posts: 1260 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: California
Topic Posts: 9

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