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Newest Member: Hilda (61117)

User Topic: Looking Back
♂ 42231
Member # 42231
Default  Posted: 9:24 AM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

May have a bit of a weird question, but I'm sure others here can relate. A thought hit me the other day that I haven't been able to shake. In the 11+ years the STBXWW and I were together, I've experienced so much. Some experiences are a direct result of our relationship, and others not as much. In that time, I've had the greatest periods of personal and professional growth. I've been best man to my 2 best friends. I've bought a house, a few cars, been on some fairly nice vacations, etc. etc. Point is there are a ton of memories that one day I hope I will be able to look back fondly on except for one thing - she was there for them all. Whether or not the memory is a direct result of her or not, she was a huge part of my life, and looking back on these memories means thinking of her too.

For those who are further down the road than I am, do you ever get to "reclaim" those memories and put them in the proper context, or does thinking of the past just re-open the wound? I'd love to believe that these past 11+ years aren't all just triggers to remind me of what I lost.

"Character is the ability to follow through on commitments that were made in moments of high resolve – even when we no longer feel like it." Carl Andersen

Posts: 3091 | Registered: Jan 2014 | From: Texas
♂ 30221
Member # 30221
Default  Posted: 9:37 AM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It does get better. But the associations don't vanish.

My kids and I now discuss things that happened when we were a whole family. And we can laugh about them. My ex-w is a mess and I want nothing to do with her. But all that stuff, good and bad, is what delivers you to where you are now.

The other stuff - all those things that happened while you were a married couple do seem to, in a way, sort themselves out. Vacations, funny and sad moments, life events - you will see them in a different light but, for me at least, mostly with a smile.

"I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A bird will fall frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." D. H. Lawrence

Her: WW/57 Me: BS/63 24yrs M
3 great kids, now 22, 20, 17 b,b,g
D-Day 8/14/08, D 1/13/11

Posts: 1164 | Registered: Nov 2010 | From: East Coast
♀ 36134
Member # 36134
Default  Posted: 9:48 AM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

What Merlin said holds true for me.

It's part of my ( and my kids) history. Some times were funny and good and those memories reflect that. My kids are not allowed to discuss past history around NW. So they do a lot of talking about the past around me, it's part of who they are. I'm glad they have good memories.

I trust you is a better compliment than I love you, because you may not trust the person you love, but you can always love the person you trust. - Unknown
Relationships are like sharing a book, it doesn't work if you're not on the same page.

Posts: 6708 | Registered: Jul 2012 | From: Florida
♀ 1558
Member # 1558
Default  Posted: 9:59 AM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I agree with Merlin -- you'll review them with a smile. Even I do, post-NPD headcase. Despite the web of lies he'd caught me up in, my own memories of happiness and fun were genuine. I truly was enjoying myself. It took a while to realize that, though, and to FORGIVE myself for that.

Time will bring its own peace, although you will still have random small things pop up from time to time. Case in point: my middle-schooler wants to join the tennis team. I abhor tennis, because NPDex was a tennis player. So far I haven't really triggered, but I've thought to myself, "I'll go to your track meets and your dad can go to your tennis matches. I never want to see a court again."

The reality is that I'll be courtside, cheering my kid on, sitting next to the man who I married and made me believe the world was safe again. Not NPDex. A new beginning.

“If you don't like my opinion of you, you can always improve.” ~ Ashleigh Brilliant
"Great love requires determination." ~ tryingtwo
"Don't try to win over the haters, you're not the jackass whisperer." ~ Brene Brown

Posts: 14329 | Registered: Jun 2003 | From: Middle-of-Diddly, TX
♂ 40173
Member # 40173
Default  Posted: 11:03 AM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Since my STBX and I are packing up the house to put on the market the history thing came up around photos. She texted me one day telling me she had taken a few pages out of one of my photo albums, which had photos of her in them.

I asked for them back. I told her that I wasn't interested in sitting down and reminiscing with them, but that since she had made choices about my history over the last four year (her affair years) for me, I at least wanted control over the previous 14 years of my history with her.

She said she would put the pages back. I don't know whether I will ever get to being able to think about our marriage in a positive light again, but for now it is what it is. I have my kids from it, and that, at least is a positive.

Me: BH, 40
Her: Ms. Daisy
Together 18 years, married 15+
LTA 3.5 years, living together
Dday: 7/28/13
Ds17, DS12, DD12
Divorced! 2/24/2015
Apology. You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Posts: 1155 | Registered: Aug 2013
♂ 42231
Member # 42231
Default  Posted: 6:11 PM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks again for the feedback everyone. I do hope, in time, that I can look back on events from the last 11+ years, as Merlin put it, "mostly with a smile." It'll definitely take time though...

"Character is the ability to follow through on commitments that were made in moments of high resolve – even when we no longer feel like it." Carl Andersen

Posts: 3091 | Registered: Jan 2014 | From: Texas
♀ 26928
Member # 26928
Default  Posted: 6:20 PM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I can completely relate and I agree with Merlin.
I married XWH at the ripe old age of 18 and we divorced when I was in my 30s. He was a part of every major milestone for me as well.

It does get better. I can look on those things and enjoy it for what it was, despite his involvement at the time.

Me - 45
DD(24), DS(21, PDD-NOS)

WH#2 (SorryinSac)- Killed himself (May 2015) in our home 6 days after being served divorce docs.
XWH #1 - legally married 18yrs. 12+ OW (that I know of).

I edit often for clarity/typos.

Posts: 9964 | Registered: Dec 2009 | From: Here and There
♀ 39193
Member # 39193
Default  Posted: 6:22 PM, March 31st (Monday), 2014View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

You will get there. It just takes time.

For me it's been a gradual process, but what I've discovered is that while XWH and I were living our lives together, we weren't experiencing things the same way. He was functioning very much as a "man behind the curtain" fake self, while I was being real. Being me. Always.

Sooo... I can still live in the x-marital house, because I love it, and I would have loved it regardless of who else lived here.

I can look fondly back on amazing trips and vacations, because they were incredible experiences, and would have been even if XWH hadn't been there too.

It's been a revelation for me, really, how much of the happiness in the those 8 years came from ME, from the authentic, genuine life I was living. *I* did those things, *I* had those adventures, *I* went to those amazing places. The happy memories didn't disappear when he did, because they were never tied to him, they were tied to ME, and I'm still here.

Very specific couples memories are harder, obviously. Our beautiful wedding on the beach, the first time we met, the first time we kissed, etc. Those still sting, and I think they probably always will. But when you're talking about cars, trips, houses, friendships, etc... I think you'll find those memories are far more connected to you then they are to her. And as more time goes by, you'll remember them that way: part of YOUR life that's going strong, rather that part of the marital life that is now over.

Me: Enjoying life
Him: Someone else's problem

Follow your heart, but take your brain with you. ~ Alfred Adler
Letting go of the outcome is about the most empowering thing you can do for yourself. ~ LosferWords

Posts: 1857 | Registered: May 2013 | From: Oregon
Topic Posts: 8

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