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Is WH owning the A?

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FightingBack posted 1/30/2014 10:47 AM

I realized today, that although my WH has apologized many times and has made many changes, he has never actually said to me, "FB, I did xyz, and I'm sorry.

He has said he was stupid, blind, selfish, inconsiderate. He admits what he did was wrong, terrible, and has caused so much grief, but he has never said anything about his choices except that he "let things spiral out of control" or that "he never acknowledged that what he was doing could affect me or our family."

I have asked questions and he has answered them, although it is very difficult for him to recall how he felt at the time. It is his feelings that matter to me.

I need to know what was going on in his mind. What he felt when he would call me to say that he had to work late or that he was going on a golf weekend, knowing that these times were reserved for her. When asked, all he can say is, "I just blocked everything. I didn't even acknowledge that I was lying to you. When I spoke to you, I wasn't thinking about what I would be doing in a few hours. When I went golfing, I wasn't thinking about meeting up with her later."

He knows he had an affair, led a double life, but can't tell me how it developed because he sees it as a long series of one night stands. He never analyzed what he was doing, how things were changing between us or even how emotionally attached he and OW were becoming.

He often says. "It wasn't like a romantic affair. It was just convenient, she was always available and I separated everything". After spending time with her, he would 'detach' and then could only think about getting home to us.

It is as if it all happened in a dreamlike state for which he wasn't really accountable. He answers questions with. "I guess" or "I must have" or "I would like to think" and of course "I don't know".

Why does this still drive me crazy? Is he not really owning this?

steadfast1973 posted 1/30/2014 12:19 PM

He was living in the right now. he wasn't thinking of anything but what he wanted right then. No Consequences. When I ask my WH what he thought was going to happen after, he said he never thought that far ahead. He said he felt like he was on auto pilot. Like watching a movie.

marionwendy posted 1/30/2014 13:19 PM

FightingBack: this could be me writing this. Everything you wrote is what my WH says! All of it. I think IMHO that my WH truly believes he is owning the Affair. He has said all the exact things your WH has said. I see the remorse, I have seen him cry like I never have in 21 years. I see the look of disgust when he talks about the two of them. Maybe everyone responds differently. Maybe in their mind they believe they are owning it. Do you think this could be the case?

Dallas2 posted 1/30/2014 13:24 PM

FB do you think your FWH is owning the A? I read your profile and from what I read he appears to be blaming you for not being available. HE let "things spiral out of control." I think that is crap. Maybe if it was short and short lived but 15 years???

Keep asking him for the answers you need and decide what his consequences will be if he doesn't answer you. I wrote questions out and he answered in the same way and then we talked about his answers or lack of.

For me I wouldn't accept, "I'm sorry" in a generic form. He had to be specific about what he was sorry for.

He was dreamlike?? He blocked it all out?? He is IMO stonewalling and doesn't want to face reality of himself.

He is not owning is A.

FightingBack posted 1/30/2014 13:56 PM

Steadfast, yes, my H would not "let himself go there" when it came to thinking about possible consequences, or guilt for that matter. I have a hard time with this.

I had asked him once, kind of jokingly, if he was having an affair. He replied, "FB, I wouldn't have the TIME to have an affair". I immediately felt guilty for even joking about it because he had to put such long hours in at work!!!!

But when I reminded him of that conversation and asked him if it had brought his two worlds closer together for a minute, he said no, he put it out of his mind.

So yes, he totally separated his dual life. But it was intentional.

Marionwendy, Yes, I think he does think he owns it. He has said that he takes full responsibility for the affair. But "the affair" or "what transpired" (another favourite description of his) or "what happened" is too generalized for me. And what does taking responsibility mean? It sounds like, "OK. I am totally to blame. I am at fault. I was so foolish." I was caught with my hand in the cookie jar and I am so sorry. It won't happen again.

Dallas, No, I don't think he is really owning it. He may be afraid to really face what he did and therefore continues to push it out of his mind at times. he says that he thinks about it every day but he is yet to come home and say, "FB, I've been thinking about it and........." It has never happened.

And I'm still waiting for my timeline.

[This message edited by FightingBack at 2:16 PM, January 30th (Thursday)]

steadfast1973 posted 1/30/2014 14:09 PM

My WH is owning it. We talk about how he got there. It sounds very much like an addiction.

AML04 posted 1/30/2014 20:19 PM

He may be afraid to really face what he did and therefore continues to push it out of his mind at times. he says that he thinks about it every day but he is yet to come home and say, "FB, I've been thinking about it and........." It has never happened.

I could have written this!! I really thought my WH was owning his A but now I'm wondering. I'm 99% sure he doesn't blame me directly, he's said he was selfish and he didn't ever let himself think of what it would do to me. I used to call the OW his girlfriend jokingly!! You would think that would've caused some guilty thoughts right?? Nope, it was awkward so he pushed it aside.

I made a post about I thought WH "got it" but didn't "GET IT". Now I'm wondering if maybe it's because he hasn't fully owned it. Thank you for posting this.

I'm so sorry you're going through this.

GradSchoolGirl posted 1/30/2014 22:23 PM

My XWH actually says he was "delusional". He says that he really separated the two "lives" he was living, like he could shut one off at will. One person at home, another person when we weren't around. And I asked all the same things you did, "What were you thinking when you lied about working late?" or "Didn't you feel bad kissing me goodbye, telling me how much you loved me and then five minutes later texting/emailing/calling other women?" (Mine never had just one, he needed a fan club.)He says that he really didn't feel anything, never thought about the possible consequences or the hurt it would cause. Rationalized it. Tucked it away. Which is all hard to fathom, I know.
It is also what he went to IC to work on. His issues, not mine.
Hang in there! And take care of you. Sometimes trying to understand their "why" can be like being drug down the rabbit hole to Wonderland. Reach out to loved ones who help you stay grounded in reality because you're important, not just the marriage, you as a person are important too. :)

Gotmegood posted 1/30/2014 23:32 PM

"Why does this still drive me crazy? Is he not really owning this?"
This still drives you crazy for the same reason it drives us all crazy.....because it is UNIMAGINABLE to me anyway, that I would be able to compartmentalize my life that way. Are you serious? It was such an ordinary act, that you were UNAWARE of how you felt as you planned to have sex with someone other than your spouse? I've been told that he can't remember if he screwed the prostitute in February or March. That he can't remember if she ever texted him before, alerting him that she was back in town and available. (That's how he got caught, a text on his phone). Can't remember? Yes, these evasions of the truth type answers naturally drive you crazy. Sadly, if I am to believe him, then I have to conclude, for that time at least, that he was completely self absorbed. Self-centered and acting as though I didn't exist.
Another thing that you mentioned that really struck a chord with me is how much it would mean to me if just ONE time, he would bring it up. Just once.

StorybookGirl42 posted 1/30/2014 23:46 PM

Honestly, I think men (generally speaking) tend to be better at "compartmentalizing" than women. I know my FWH is VERY good at it. He has this ability to just put walls up around things and act like it isn't there when it clearly is.

Because of this, a lot of his explanations lacked some of the detail I felt I needed. He genuinely does memory dumps of things he doesn't want to remember. It is one of the things, even before the affair, that drives me crazy.

I will say, my guy did own up to it in that he said, and this is an exact quote, "I messed up. I doubted you, I doubted us, and I put my trust in the wrong person. I am so very sorry and I hope you can forgive me someday."

Talk to him about this. Ask him how he feels about what he did. Not what he did, how he feels about it. Get him to discuss the emotions and see if that helps him realize he hasn't apologized. And don't be afraid to say "You know, you admit that you did something wrong, but you've never said that you are sorry about it." Open the dialogue.

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