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BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 01:08 AM

Up until recently, my BH was adamant that no one find out about my A. But that changed when he started talking about separation.

I am a stay at home parent, I had our eldest child and then have stayed at home with the children in order to support his career in the military. I have no income and no savings, a separation would mean I would need to find somwwhere else to live with the children and BH refuses to help financially with this. He said my mum needs to cover the cost and so I need to tell her about my A so that she doesn't blame the separation on him and will agree to give me money.

I agreed and my mum came down yesterday, she knew we were having problems but I hadn't told her specifics. We went out to lunch and I told her about the A. She was wonderful, she had an A when I was younger so she was sympathetic to both BH (knowing the effect it had on my dad) and me (having been in that position herself). She didn't judge or lecture me, she just held my hand as I talked and said she was proud of me for all the work I was doing. She asked questions and I answered honestly, we talked a lot about my childhood, at one point she got upset and blamed herself which wasn't nice to see at all.
We didn't talk much about money, she said we would cross that bridge when we come to it but she is of the opinion that BH has a responsibility to look after his children and that involves putting a roof over their head no matter what the reason for separation.

When I came home, BH was furious. Nothing to do with the money but because I hadn't disclosed exact detail about the sexual aspect of the A to my mum. He said that is the part that bothers him the most and I 'glossed over it' in order to make myself look blameless. I'm so upset, I have never had the sort of relationship with my mum where we talked openly about sex and specific details about the A are not important to her in the same way they are to BH.
I spoke to my mum again and she said she didn't want to know specific details, she has boundaries and would feel very uncomfortable in knowing that stuff.

BH said that I was trying to blame it all on him so that my family hate him and blame him for the separation. I'm crushed, I don't blame him for the A so I wouldn't stand by and allow my family to blame him for the consequences of it. When we do eventually separate, I will tell them about my A. I told him all this but he was still angry, he hardly spoke to me for the rest of the day. He did warm to me a little later in the evening and we had a cuddle in bed.

I'm glad I told my mum, it felt like a positive step, owning my shit, you know? My mum told me not to tell my dad, even after 20 years it would be too close to home for him after my mum's A and she was worried it would damage my relationship with him. I told her that was a chance I had to take, I couldn't keep him in the dark.
I just wish BH could be inside my head and know what I'm thinking or actually HEAR me when I talk so he could see how hard I'm trying.

SurprisinglyOkay posted 2/17/2014 06:27 AM

I'm glad it went well with your mom.

I told my mom as well, and I can't imagine telling her exact details. I'm glad yours stood firm on her boundaries.

I'm glad I told my mum, it felt like a positive step, owning my shit, you know?

Yep! It became easier with the more people I told, like extracting poison from my mind.

My mum told me not to tell my dad, even after 20 years it would be too close to home for him after my mum's A and she was worried it would damage my relationship with him. I told her that was a chance I had to take, I couldn't keep him in the dark.

I hope this doesn't happen. I'm glad that you want to tell him anyway.
Parents can be surprising!

I just wish BH could be inside my head and know what I'm thinking or actually HEAR me when I talk so he could see how hard I'm trying.

He is so hurt. He may not be able to hear you for a while. Keep talking.

BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 06:51 AM

I'm trying but it just seems to make him angrier.

I finished reading 'How to help your spouse heal from your affair' this morning. I had highlighted bits I felt were important and bits I had questions about. I suggested to BH that he read it to see if there was anything in there he thought I wasn't already doing. He threw the book at me as I was doing the washing up

[This message edited by BrokenButTrying at 6:52 AM, February 17th (Monday)]

smez posted 2/17/2014 06:57 AM

If there are children involved then he does need to step up and help out financially. Can you get legal advice? Emotions are running high at the moment and it's important that you both are able to hash out an agreement that is fair to both parties (or at least fair to the children).

It sounds like (and I have no idea of all the details) that your BS is trying to punish you and is angry that your mom isn't angry at you (he obviously isn't a mother ). I would gently remind him that the only emotions he can control or have is his own. How other people react to the news is outside of his control.

Good luck.

20WrongsVs1 posted 2/17/2014 07:11 AM

Good on you, telling your mum. How close are BH and your dad? When you tell your dad, would he consider talking with BH? I told my parents, and I wish they had been a little more proactive about reaching out to BH and letting him know they supported him. He'll never tell his family, so after DDay it was a pretty lonely feeling for BH.

BH throwing stuff at you is not okay. Neither is tossing the children out on the street. Have you met with an attorney? Many will give you a free initial consult. Not saying you should file, or anything like that! But you need to know your rights, financially. BH cutting the children of financially is just unacceptable.

tooanalytical posted 2/17/2014 07:34 AM

Have you met with an attorney? Many will give you a free initial consult.

At some point this may be necessary but IMO this could backfire. What a BS says versus does may be two different things. He is hurting, doesn't trust you and is watching your actions. If I found out my wife was seeing an attorney rather than fighting to save the M, I would be done.

Whether the intention was only to gather information (just in case) or not, a BS will most likely view it as you are arming up and preparing for a war and will they react accordingly to protect themselves.

Gaining legal knowledge is a good thing, I just wouldn't make it my primary focus and definitely would be careful how openly I seek info.

BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 07:42 AM

Smez - He's on the roller coaster, some days he's punishing me, others are very loving and affectionate. Some days we have both, one followed by the other! I'm riding it with him as best I can, allowing him space but letting him know I'm here for him if he ever wants to talk but mainly he doesn't want to. He was out earlier and triggered about something, he hates sharing triggers with me but this time he shouted it at me as he threw the book.

20wrongs - BH is very close to my parents. My mum said she would email my BH to acknowledge that she knows and have a chat with him.
My relationship with my dad has always been rocky, it plays a big part in my 'why'. My dad is a troubled man and not particularly close to anyone in the family in an emotional sense. My mum's A affected him deeply, he's never had another partner or anything since she left. My A will undoubtedly trigger him and I think he might take some time to recover, I have accepted this as a possible consequence of my actions. My dad gets on well with my BH though so may email him to talk.

I'm in the UK so things are different over here, I'm clueless when it comes to legal stuff. I might have to ask my parents to help.

BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 07:44 AM

Tooanlytical - That's exactly why I haven't done anything about it yet. He mentioned separation three weeks ago but as yet hasn't made any moves towards it. So I'm just putting everything into supporting him, doing my IC and work on myself and making sure he knows I'm 100% committed.

smez posted 2/17/2014 07:57 AM

BrokenButTrying, I am in the UK as well but an expat which makes divorce almost an impossibility for us.

I disagree with tooanalytical and think that getting legal advice isn't a bad thing, especially with children around. Be 100% open about it with BS.

One of things that my BS and I talked about in MC is that words have consequences. He could be angry but there was boundaries and throwing things falls outside that boundary.

It sounds like you both need to sit down and have a rational conversation about what happens next. If separation is needed for healing, then by all means separate. With children in the house, the back and forth is probably most harmful for them. They have no idea if they are staying or going and that isn't benefiting anyone.

BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 08:11 AM

The kids don't know anything. By some miracle, BH and I are still getting along fantastically as friends and are managing to co-parent flawlessly. I think that's the thing that's holding BH from actually moving out, family life is ticking along fine underneath everything else.

This is the first time he's raised his voice to me and luckily the boys were upstairs playing so didn't hear. We usually have discussions away from them or wait until they're in bed, they're very young so their understanding isn't up to 'over hearing' things yet really.

At the moment BH is saying one thing and doing another. He says he wants to separate, fine I said, whatever he needs. But his actions are loving and affectionate most of the time. My IC said not to talk about the separation unless he does, let him work it out in his own head because it's about what he needs and his inaction on moving out suggests he is struggling with the decision.

smez posted 2/17/2014 08:34 AM


I'm glad to hear about the kids. It is the same way in my house as well. We both make a concerted effort to keep our child out of the mess.

It just sounds like he didn't get the reaction he wanted and now he is lashing out.

It reminds me of when my husband sent an email to his parents about how we were about to break up. His parents sent one back and said they were supportive of BOTH of us. That angered my husband and then in MC when I complained about the email and the MC agreed, that made him even more angry.

At the heart of the issue was that he wanted someone on "his" side. What he really wanted was his mother to write back..."I never liked that whore anyway..."

BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 09:10 AM

I think like your BH, mine wants someone to acknowledge the pain he is in by hating me. Reassurance that it's ok for him to hate me, maybe?

My relationship with his family is strained anyway, I have never really got on with them. If he's looking for validation for his pain and anger then he would find it in shed loads from them. But he refuses to tell them. He won't say why but I think it's because he knows that if he decides to R with me then my relationship with them will be irreparable and that will impact on our children.

I am acknowledging his pain, I truly 'get it'. But BH refuses to believe I do. He says the fact I am suggesting reading books and want to talk about things, shows that I donít understand how deeply he's hurt.

He apologised for shouting and throwing the book but now he's angry again because I tried to apologise for hurting him.

painfulpast posted 2/17/2014 11:23 AM

Smez - He's on the roller coaster, some days he's punishing me, others are very loving and affectionate.

Gently, I doubt he's punishing you. This seems to be a common misconception. Most BSs aren't 'punishing' the WS. The BS is angry, at the world. The view of everything has changed. They are angry at themselves for staying, angry at the unfair world, angry at all of it. There is no 'punishment' involved. It is pain coming out.

Please don't think the bad days are about him punishing you. They aren't, most likely. They are most likely about his pain with his world being flipped upside down.

BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 12:06 PM

He's admitted that he's punishing me. Not allowing me money for food shopping, selling the car so I can't get to the shops, IC or take the children out easily (the car wasn't a trigger) he's buying another car but I won't be allowed to use it. He says he wants to make my life difficult.

[This message edited by BrokenButTrying at 12:07 PM, February 17th (Monday)]

painfulpast posted 2/17/2014 12:31 PM

Those things sound like punishment. I was referring to every bad day someone has.

Speaking about these 'punishments', how are you supposed to live? Does he want R, or does he want to see your life become a living hell?

Gently, how much 'punishment' are you willing to accept? These things sound like control, not punishment. Not being allowed to use the car?

Yes, there is a recommendation of 6 months before making any big decisions. However, these are big decisions. They just aren't the decision to separate. Why is he doing this? What is the desired outcome?

BrokenButTrying posted 2/17/2014 12:42 PM

He once said in an angry outburst that he wanted to hurt me as much as I'd hurt him. Later he said he didn't mean it but I suspect otherwise.

He tried to have a revenge ONS a few weeks ago, decided he was going to go home with a girl in a club but he couldn't go through with it. He told me about it the next morning.

He says he just doesn't care what I want or need anymore, what I do about getting around is none of his concern. He is not financially responsible for me anymore etc etc. This is interspersed with affection and loving moments so I figured it was part of the roller coaster.

painfulpast posted 2/17/2014 12:54 PM

I can't speak for your BS - but this doesn't sound like normal 'roller coaster' things to me. I'm not going to proclaim to be an expert in all relationships, but the rollercoaster usually goes between loving the WS and hating them, which is usually the WS hating themselves. This sounds like more than that. Again - I'm only an expert in my relationship. I'm curious to see what others think.

Darkness Falls posted 2/17/2014 14:08 PM

I just get so sad when I see people allow themselves to be in this kind of situation.

This is my opinion: a BS is entitled to be as angry with their WS as they want, and they have every right to (reasonably) express that anger---UNTIL it hurts kids.

Refusing to support the children financially if you separate is not OK (and, I assume, not legal...but I don't know anything about UK laws). Refusing to give you money for food and not allowing you access to a car to transport your kids is not OK.

You do need to find out your legal rights/options. There is a line between wanting to R and allowing your kids to be hurt.

homefront posted 2/18/2014 14:45 PM

While you as the WS are expected to "weather the storm", you still deserve to be treated with human dignity and respect, especially as his children's mother. Do not let him use the A as a tool to turn to abuse, reading this thread has made me very uncomfortable. Even if you were an ex-spouse, he would have some level of legal responsibility for your support after years of dependancy, the support of your children, and I like to think in a moral sense he would also CARE about where his children were living, how they got from place to place, the quality of their life, and the quality of their mother's life as an influence on the lives of the children.

BrokenButTrying posted 2/18/2014 15:01 PM

I had my IC session today (got the bus). She is concerned I'm not enforcing my personal boundaries enough.

We talked about placing value in myself so that I am able to speak out when a behaviour or act hurts me.
I'm just struggling so much with the horrible thing I've done, I find it very hard to convince myself I'm not deserving of punishment. And if I can't even convince myself, how on earth am I supposed to convince BH? I don't feel I'm in a position to ask anything of him right now.

I pushed him too hard yesterday, I can see that now.

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