Then he had a moment of weakness while we were living separately for 6 months, and now on good days things are back to "normal."
However...it makes it weird...hard?...for me because I feel like nothing has changed. Everyone talks about having to make changes to make sure that he doesn't make the same mistake again, so you can fix what caused the bad decision in the first place, etc.
Well, he was only partying like a frat boy because he was out here living alone and had nothing better to do on a Saturday night after a hard week of work (very physically intense job). But now that I am here, that is not an issue. He doesn't go out unless it's a special occasion for a friend or something. (It's always been that way since we've been married...absolutely no issues with partying or drinking or anything.)
He will go away for a month or two for TDY again in the future (military) and there will be deployments, but deployments are not exactly party central. Either way, we have discussed at length new boundaries for when he does go out alone in the future, and I feel comfortable with them. So that is basically the only thing that needed changing.
Lately he has been getting frustrated feeling like nothing he does is enough for me, and he IS trying VERY hard to be what I need, and most of the time doing a great job. BUT it just feels very scary to me to just go back to the way we were with no visible difference in behavior.
If I want to have a great, loving relationship, I should be happy to go back to the way it was, since it WAS great. I wouldn't change a thing, but it just feels so strange to be like "before" when I read everyone's stories on here about how their WS changed.
If you got through this whole thing, thanks for reading! I don't even know really what I am looking for with this...anyone else experience this? Any advice on how to feel better about going back to the same relationship I already had (with a few differences given what happened, obviously but overall basically the same...)?
People don't cheat for no reason.
He made a huge mess of your life. Compromised your safety, the security of his family, your health. What if the ONS had gotten pregnant? Had STD's?
He violated your trust, walked all over your marriage vows.
I don't see that as a moment of weakness.
I would make sure there was IC in play and be sure there isn't any rug sweeping going on.
People can get along well together, have fun, seem close as can be. IMO it's what is inside of each of you that matters. I bet he has issues he needs to resolve. Maybe you do too, aside from the A, but I don't know you.
Maybe you are both well-adjusted emotionally healthy people, I can't tell you that. I do know, if I was in my 20's with a third child on the way with a husband that is away quite a bit I would be digging until I was sure it was done.
MC and IC don't hurt, and you never know just what you might find.
We had a great marriage before. I was blissfully happy. I was hands down the love of his life. And things are still changing for the better.
It would never have happened if he had left the bar before it closed and gone home, rather than going with a group of people he just met to someone's house for more hanging out/drinking. That's part of the boundaries we discussed, and in the future he will leave bars at midnight, and only socialize with the people he is there with. (The group of people he left with were people he met at the bar, not his friends.)
Neither of us thinks this is a small thing, or not a big deal... I was just trying to express the weirdness I feel with no significant day to day changes for us, since nothing was wrong before. Other than the great emotional support he has been giving me whenever I need it, everything is the same. Not in a rug-sweeping way, but in a nothing-needed-to-be-changed way. And it's not that he didn't support me emotionally before, I just didn't need it like this.
I guess I just feel strange that there is no huge, dramatic turnaround like some people experience. But I guess I shouldn't expect one since there was nothing wrong with his behavior/treatment of me before this happened? I don't know.
Eta- maybe explore why there is even a discussion of a married man with 3 kids who had a ons going to bars until midnight. Does he feel he deserves to go?
[This message edited by Lostinthismess at 1:28 PM, January 28th (Tuesday)]
As far as the why, I have talked and talked his ear off about this. He can't come up with a why, and it just frustrates both of us. I have even asked someone else in a similar situation what their husband's "why" was, and it seemed pretty general and "duh" to me, so I am not convinced that there is a "why" in this situation, other than that he is a stupid selfish imperfect man who gave into temptation, and feels like he has learned his lesson and is completely remorseful. That's really the best we can come up with, and I'm ok with that.
We have discussed boundaries for the future when he is away from home, but that doesn't change anything for me in my daily life, if that makes sense. The only changes that need to take place are ones that he will have to work on when he is away, and he won't have an opportunity to practice those changes for a pretty long time.
I know that OUR relationship, and I MYSELF weren't a problem before
You are right here. It had nothing to do with you.