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Affairs as control...opinions WS/ BS?

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iwillNOT posted 3/7/2014 15:47 PM

In my WH's 6 months of IC, something he tells me his IC mentions about motivation for his affair is a desire for control. It's hard to get her real meaning secondhand from what he says, but it didn't seem like it fit as part of the "why". She would discuss how his stage of life right now is one that is to a great extent not within his control. We have small kids with needs that are not optional, we are in a tight money situation where it is mandatory he work lots of hours, the house/cars etc always need work, he works in a highly regulated profession with little room for error or autonomy. Coupled with his ADD which has always caused issues with rules and boundaries. I was always like, Really, that's a "why"? Not. I live the same life he does, and I have always held the view that these things are a given for the stage of life we are in. You put your head down and get through it and remember it won't be forever.

However, today I read a post on here where someone pointed out how much control a WS gets to have while in their A. Controlling how much their BS and AP get to know about their emotions and inner selves, controlling information to manipulate outcomes, controlling how far the infidelity goes and how frequently it happens, then putting it in a box and shoving it on the shelf and controlling when the next time they take down the box again is. Basically manipulating everyone involved according to their own wants at any given time. I had never thought of it in this light before. That's a lot of control.

So - does any of this ring true for your situation? Does it sound like a plausible part of a "why"? Just looking for opinions and perspectives.

[This message edited by iwillNOT at 4:16 PM, March 7th (Friday)]

bookjunkie posted 3/7/2014 15:54 PM

I believe control was a big part of my "why". I didn't feel that I had much control in my life at the time. H and I were not communicating much and when I would try, I hit a wall with him.

But with the AP, I was able to talk about whatever I wanted and I felt that he was really "listening" to me. And if the conversation was not what I wanted to talk about or I became bored with it, I would tell AP, I don't want to talk about that and he would always comply. I enjoyed the power and control of our interactions, conversations and such.

I realized this very quickly after the A ended because I was having a terrible time with the "withdrawal" from having that power....it was totally addicting.

iwillNOT posted 3/7/2014 16:15 PM

Thanks for the reply, bookjunkie.

My WH and I were also not communicating well at all for a long time before his affair(understatement) and were both at the point of feeling like it was pointless to try, nothing was going to change. Such a dark place to be. I am sure he felt like he did everything he could, and I felt the same. Sadly we both blamed the other without owning our own sides of the fence.

bionicgal posted 3/7/2014 16:20 PM

I will speak for my (fw)H and say that he never felt more out of control in his life, than when he was in the affair. He wasn't on some kind of mad power trip -- he was more like an addict trying to get a fix. He did crazy (out of control) stuff.

It is an escape though, for sure.

gonnabe2016 posted 3/7/2014 20:55 PM

*****Basically manipulating everyone involved according to their own wants at any given time.*****

^^^This exactly describes how I look at my stbx's actions.
My stbx was *remorseful* for only so long as he thought he would get a pay-out. So he would enter this *remorseful* stage and answer some of my questions (but of course, never completely truthfully). The problem was that he had a LOT of OW's and so I was getting bits and pieces of each of his *stories* at a time.

But I got enough of each story to be able to say, with confidence, that he used his married status as a way to *control* the tenor of his interactions with any woman he encountered. If one of his women started pushing for more than he wanted to give to her -- he'd throw out the "you know I'm married" card. Or if he was pursuing someone who was using his *married* status as a way to tell him No -- his *married* status didn't matter and he was only with me for the kids or I didn't love him....or <whatthefuckever> he needed to say in order to keep that chick on his *hook*.

I honestly believe that is one of the most significant reasons that he is so fucking pissed that I'm divorcing him. I'm taking away his *blanket*.

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