"I told you before that I didnít think I was nearly as angry as I should expect to be. I donít know that Iím there now or that Iíve hit the potential for just how hurt a man can be. I told you that despite all this, I could never hate you. Hate is such a strong word, and one that I still donít think I can apply to you. All that said, I have this avalanche of anger, frustration, despair, bitterness, angst and pent up rage that I need to start working out of me.
Let me promise you one thing as you read this. There is no way these words here can possibly cause you the pain that your actions have caused me. This is not an argument or up for debate Ė there is simply no way that you could possibly be feeling what I am feeling. This is a pain well beyond anything Iíve experienced. Itís like all the losses weíve had over the years compiled into one and magnified 100 times over. You may find that as hyperbole, exaggeration or whatever, but I am not being overdramatic here. If you could step into my mind for just a minute, youíd be screaming to get out. I am stuck with it. There is no escape for me. My only reprieve is that time will lessen this little by little.
I will not say I have been the perfect husband. I know I have my ways of falling into routines, maybe even ruts. I maybe was too comfortable with you, took you for granted, took us for granted. After all, you are the foundation my life has been built upon. So, yes, when you put that much blind trust in something, maybe you should reevaluate and instead be always looking to continue to build that foundation. I could have invested more time into you, into us. I also could have been calmer at times myself, instead of saying some hurtful things to you out of anger that you honestly didnít deserve. I will have to live with those regrets, and they are mine alone. However, there are 2 things that are absolute truths regarding your infidelity. There are 2 truths I must lean on if I am to ever get past this, if I am ever to erase the horrible images in my head of you giving yourself away to another and thus crushing the foundation we built. You did the one thing I told you 11 years ago that I couldnít forgive.
1. This is NOT my fault. Regardless of everything, we never needed to get to this point. You wanted to stray and sacrifice our love.
2. I did NOTHING to deserve this pain.
Not only am I the victim, I get to live amongst the wreckage you created for me. I am still in our home surrounded by reminders and memories. I get to watch our dog continually look for you and cry for her mommy. Everything around me is a reminder of happier times. Youíve ruined so much of what I was. Itís in the little things, like I cannot go to the same grocery store anymore. I cannot eat the same foods. Hell, I canít eat much at all. I cannot listen to music or watch TV. I canít sleep. I have no drive or passion left. I feel like Iím just going through the motions with no identity of who I used to be. You did this to me. There are no offenses I committed toward you that are worthy of this punishment. And for it, you get to leave the situation while Iím left to wallow in it. I cannot turn it off. It is who I am now. I did NOT deserve this from the one I held above all others.
I honored our vows. When you were at your lowest, I stood by you. When our son was taken away while still in your womb, I went through that pain too, but I know it hurt you far more. How could it not? When we found out weíd likely never be able to have children of our own again, be able to see reflections of ourselves in a life we created, I was beyond devastated. But I still stuck by you. It wasnít out of pity or duty. Itís not something I want a parade over or any special thanks. It was because starting a family with someone else would mean I wouldnít be with you, and that was not something I could live with. I wanted you. I needed you. You are the one, and regardless of our family situation, I knew I could be happy with you and you alone if thatís what came of it. I thought we came out of that situation stronger than ever. I thought we were invincible. I was wrong. Apparently you did not feel you could be honest with me or work on whatever is troubling you, and I deserved so much better than that.
I start counseling next week. I will be getting back on anti-depressants likely this week. I need outlets for the pain youíve caused me, and these are but baby-steps in that direction. Youíve mentioned being lost, feeling like youíre about to have a breakdown. I know what happened to our son and our hopes of starting a family has never found a resolution in you. How could it? I implore you to do the same as me Ė get into counseling. Work on a solution. Work on building your life back. Talking to your sisters, mom, and friends is great and all, but you need someone completely objective here. Let me stress NEED. Do it please. Not for me, but for yourself.
I donít know how you still feel about this and itís probably too early to know what will happen for sure, but nonetheless, weíve talked about possible reconciliation. To rebuild that trust is a monumental task and one that will require a ton of work. As you work on you and have your space, I need you to take this to heart if there is even a remote chance of fixing this:
1. There can be no one else. No flings, no indiscretions, nothing. Whoever you were with needs to be out of your life. I cannot see it working any other way. I will not compete with anyone else in this regard, nor will I be the back-up plan if whatever you have on the side doesnít work out.
2. You need to get counseling for you.
3. We need marriage counseling for us.
I hope you understand that despite all the immense and intolerable pain you have caused me, there is still a part of me that thinkís youíre worth fighting for. Maybe itís the memories of the woman I used to know. Maybe itís that amongst the wreckage, I can still see a faint outline of the foundation we once built buried beneath the rubble. What I cannot have is someone who doesnít 100% want to fix this. I cannot go through this again, assuming the pain I am under now ever does subside. I cannot have any reason to not trust you. I consider this no more commitment than what we expressed in our wedding vows. It wonít always be easy. For Godís sake I donít know that it can be worse. I donít need an answer now, but I will soon. I cannot remain in limbo waiting for the next shoe to drop or the next knife in my heart. For my own sake, I need to work through this and move on to build something resembling a life for me again. Despite all that youíve done to damn near kill me, I havenít shut the door on us. I havenít started to write the next chapter of my life. When I do start to pen those first lines, it will either develop into a story of love renewed, or of broken man raising himself off the mat and attempting to move on with a new life and foundation. At least for the time being, the choice is yours."
Wishing you peace and resolution and some calm on this awful journey.
Peace and strength, SoulHurts.
Thanks for sharing.
Wishing you strength and eventual peace.
Words fail me. You've nailed it, perfectly.
I've started writing this letter so many times.
I will likely continue to work on my version of this as an outlet for my pain.
The smart man divorces a lawyer.
The smarter man never marries one in the first place.
To her we were never worth the effort. :-/
Two years past d-day and your words still speak for me. Honestly, makes me want to send my ex this letter.
'It's not the end of everything,
It's just end of everything you know.'
I'm pulling for you SH
[This message edited by SeanFLA at 11:50 AM, January 29th (Wednesday)]
"You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have." ~ Bob Marley
I would suggest that you SHOW (not tell or writing) her that you made peace with yourself and have the intention to fix whatever flaws or issue you might have brought in the marriage. However, you are ready to start that process and journey by yourself. Do things on your own, show her that you are moving on. No need to be rude or a jerk about it. Just live it.
I say this gently and with your best interest at heart. A letter like the one you wrote might make you look, IN HER EYES AND WRONGLY, pathetic.
Regardless... good luck.
The first few days after I got the news, she contacted me quite a bit, and not at my request. I still don't know if regret or remorse-fullness drove her to reach out. I don't know if in some way she really wanted me to feel better, or if she just wanted to assuage her own guilt. Anywho, seeing what her visits were doing to me, my Mom and sis both politely asked her to not reach out to me right now unless absolutely necessary. so, I don't know if the lack of anything from her side is trying to give me space, or if there's just nothing in her that wants to reach out, or something in between.
Long story short, I'm conflicted and confused to all hell, and though I don't see how this situation could be worse, I get the very distinct impression that hitting send could do just that. All-in-all, its hard for me to believe its only been just over a week since she dropped the bomb on my heart and my life. Wow.
I notice a lot of people do marriage counseling or seeing one themselves. Does that really help? I have no desire to see a counselor and the thought of marriage counseling really pisses me off right now. Why? Kind of like a life coach. Seems like a way to talk rather than act and fix.
Is it all really that complicated to need that?
"I can still see a faint outline of the foundation" that's what my husband ironically says. How great a foundation we have. I don't think relationships are solid structures with foundations. I think they're transitory bridge spans with need for reinforcement at set points.
Someone that cheats is hardly someone I'd turn to as an architect and trust he'd know how to build a solid steady span.
I'm at least seeing some hope that maybe there may be some chance if he does the work on himself. I read something someone wrote in the ask a WS thread about how she needed to do the work on herself. That's exactly what I need. Don't focus on me and hanging on.
Do you think if she tackled that and continued regardless of how you reacted that would help with that pain? I am thinking that will be the only way for me. Problem is I don't feel like even putting the energy into communicating that and wonder if that's fair or if he should have the drive on his own. I'm thinking the latter.
Some very wise and experienced members will hopefully be along shortly to explain why sending such a letter to her at this stage is counterproductive. The short of it is that sending it will not have the desired result at this point. She will only see you as needy and weak--not strong. This perception will only help her justify her actions and look down on you.
If you haven't already been steered to the healing library, please look at it and begin the 180. Focus on you and your healing. When you start to heal, you will be in a better position to make the types of decisions you want to be in a position to make now. We will be as supportive as we can in your journey toward health.
[This message edited by crisp at 4:12 PM, January 29th (Wednesday)]
I am all for journaling, but I definitely recommend that you do not send it. Let it be cathartic for yourself, but it will absolutely CRUSH you when that heartfelt, soul-bearing letter does not hit home with your WW. Right after D-day, I wrote 11 pages of the most pain I had ever endured, just to show it to my WW, who like Sean stated, glanced over it, and put it down on the table without a word. I swore that never again would I put my neck on a chopping block like that, only to have my head chopped a second time.
You are hurting. No---you are REELING. Don't set yourself up for more hurt at this point. As much as you need your WW to feel your pain, it will never get there at this point. Maybe someday in the future, but definitely not now.
Bear your soul here. We understand.
All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
Accepting that I can may end this marriage 7/2/14
Heading for D
So, why did I want to wait until after this meeting to send the letter? Well, I knew there was a chance it would not be received well and could complicate things further for me. That worry in the back of my head, along with the feedback here, tells me to keep this to myself.
BTW, our meeting was brief. She is obviously not sleeping, biting her nails (which she only does when distressed) and had tears welling up a few times. Somehow, someway, I kept my cool and calm and walked out of there with head high and shoulders raised. I actually kind of feel good, although temporarily. Nonetheless, I faced her down, remained calm and respectful, and conducted a business transaction in a professional manner. i could see the pain in her eyes when i left simply saying "thanks for doing this. You know how to reach me." It was hard to keep up the act, but I did. I did not show her my pain. Small victories I suppose.
What a great letter. Really helps to get some of the pain, anger and frustration out on paper.
I unfortunately need to agree with Sean here. Do not give it to her.
Right now is not the time to offer R. It is a time for you to come to terms with what has happened. To feel and walk through the roller coaster of emotions you will have.
It's a time for you to continue to gain strength. It's time for you to realize you can walk away and be ok.
I don't mean that's what you will do, but you need to get there.
R is something that is offered from a place of strength, a place of resolve, renewed commitment.
It shouldn't be offered during a time of confusion, pain and fear.
Put it on the shelf. Let R sit for a while. You might think it's what you want, hell, you might even know it.
Right now, your wife doesn't deserve it. She has blown your world up. She is busy feeling sorry for herslef. She doesn't understand, truly understand the magnitude of what she has done. She is probably foggy and desperate.
You don't want that woman.
You want the woman that wakes up in the morning , looks over and knows how lucky she is for forgiveness and a second chance. You want the woman that will walk through fire to prove to you she is willing to heal.
You want that woman that wonders what it is inside her that would allow herself to throw away years of building.You want the woman that won't stop until she finds her truth, turns over every stone and digs until she is a safe, loving partner.
You want a woman whose heart is open and honest. Who hurts with you and for you, who takes your pain as her own.
You want the woman who will come to you and say.
I am broken and I need help, I want us and this marriage we have created, but I need you to feel safe with me beside you.
You want a woman whose goal is to create the best life, marriage and family she is capable of.
Your wife is not that woman, yet.
Keep walking away with your shoulders high, keep working on you and making yourself "that man" because it's who you need to be going forward in life, alone or with her.
Stand strong and know that when she is ready to make a true, honest, healing based decision , you will be able to make your choice from a loving place, a place that has begun to heal and a place absent of fear and desperation.
Good luck, you will be ok.