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I feel like R means no consequences

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Breezy150 posted 4/11/2014 00:20 AM

I have been leaning towards D for the last week, after thinking hard on some questions my IC asked me now I am not so sure. This roller coaster is making me sick.

One thing I have been thinking is that if we are able to R and we fix our M issues it is almost like he is being rewarded for the A. I know that sounds dumb but why should he get any benefits from shattering our lives? I think this is one thing that has been holding me back even though he is doing so much work.

We had a great conversation about this tonight and he was so supportive even when I said I feel like I have to leave him so I feel like he has been punished.

I also feel like I need a "before" and "after", like where I can just draw a line between things before a given moment and what happens after. I have been thinking that a separation could do that. If we separated then everything that happened before the separation ended could be lumped up into the "before" and everything after getting back together would be the "after". I know this sounds crazy, but my IC says I have a very organized and literal mind (which I do), so maybe thinking this way is just me trying to make a line that makes sense.

He was so great tonight listening to all this, even I know it sounds crazy. I am also obsessed with "justice" probably because of the murder, but that gives me a punishment and a before and an after. I have been able to fully forgive most of the murderers. I live just a few blocks from one of the men that beat my son unconscious and it doesn't bother me in the least because he is in the "after" of paying his debt to society.

If this rambling makes sense to anyone I would love some feedback, I know what I am thinking but having a hard time actually making it make sense here.

refuz2bavictim posted 4/11/2014 02:13 AM

I completely understand the linear literal thinking. Since things don't always operate that way, you can probably reframe this to better fit your cognitive style.

Maybe you could frame R in a different way. Break it down, and look at it's general sequence of phases.

In the first stages, there is a real focus on the part of the WS to do the heavy lifting, to really work toward self improvement and making amends. It's hard work, if it's being done well. As you go through the hard work of R, you leave one phase and enter another. And keep in mind there is an aspect of this that will be individual. He must also R with himself. And that will be a bit like an internal prison sentence (albeit one he has imposed upon himself) while he works to understand, process not only the destruction to you and the M, but to himself.

why should he get any benefits from shattering our lives?

It isn't until the later stages that the benefits really begin to take shape. Many of the long term benefits won't be reaped until that "AFTER" phase you speak of.

After all the hard work has been done.

If there is any justice in any of this, its that AFTER all is said and done, you will reap the benefits, of your work, but even more so you will reap the benefits of his internal work as well.

All this providing the work is actually being done.

hopefaithlove4 posted 4/11/2014 06:53 AM

I can understand this thinking and I'm the WS. It draws a specific line for before and after, gives a fresh start, and offers consequences. In my opinion, it's an opportunity to sift through the rubble, decide what you want to keep and what you want to discard, begin at the beginning with dating again, rediscover what you like/don't like, and figure out if you're a good match. I totally get it.

cvs2kkids posted 4/11/2014 07:14 AM

I disagree with your line of thinking for the following reasons.

..but why should he get any benefits from shattering our lives?

Yes he caused it, but he's also suffering the consequences. Let's say the situation was this; he drove home after way too many drinks, ran into another car, killed someone and injured himself. He now has the guilt of killing someone plus his own injuries to deal with. Would you say he has suffered any consequences?

We had a great conversation about this tonight and he was so supportive

even though he is doing so much work.

To some extent, he's being punished. He's working hard, to support you for a misdeed he's done. If he was rugsweeping then I would say run and don't look back, but his remorse seems genuine.

In the end it's what you want and need. So my final thought is would you be punishing you as much as him if you S/D? With all you've been through, and yes, despite the A, is he still a support person you require?

Skye posted 4/11/2014 07:29 AM

Would divorce be a punishment to him? My mind also worked like yours is, a long time ago. However, I realized he didn't like me which is why he cheated. Why would a divorce be a punishment to him. (He would have had less money, but money is not important to him.) I would have been punished. I wasn't going to do that to myself. We stayed married for my convenience. He has never been punished and never suffered a true consequences.

StillGoing posted 4/11/2014 07:37 AM

I hear you. I try to remember that isn't consequences that define right or wrong, or even operate as an incentive or deterrent.

WRT this statement:

Let's say the situation was this; he drove home after way too many drinks, ran into another car, killed someone and injured himself. He now has the guilt of killing someone plus his own injuries to deal with. Would you say he has suffered any consequences?

I don't think guilt, minimal injuries and a revoked license are real consequences to what, in my opinion, amounts to murder. Anyone getting into a vehicle to drive while inebriated is knowingly and willingly placing the lives of others in lethal danger.

I don't wish consequences on my wife, and I wish I had a simple explanation for why. I just don't want to deal with this shit again. I don't have consequences lined up if something like this ever does happen again, I have my own plans - which are very simple, leave and move on. If those are consequences, then they are consequences as defined by her, not me.

If someone killed my child because he got into a car after drinking, my rage would be palpable. I would want to see real consequences visited on that person, and likely work to ensure they came down hard.

In some ways I think it stems from the nature of the relationship with the offender. If it was my sister who was driving the car, the response would be more complicated.

I think there is a difference between a (perceived?) lack of consequences and a "getting away with it" position, if that makes sense at all.

Howie posted 4/11/2014 07:43 AM

I too needed a 5 month separation, I moved out but stayed in contact, at sixth month,I moved back in.We had lots of communication, I would see her.Basically,she had to demonstrate in behavior and words she still wanted me. And that she was really sorry. (This separation thing isn't for everybody.)
After that,it was ok,,, we had a new contract so to speak.It was an acceptable basis of a new life.Life is not fair or just,she is never going to feel the pain, pay the price I did for her two year betrayal. Yes, she got of lightly in real terms.The perps will never pay any price remotely close to the victims, its not a transaction.It is all a great process of living.She ended up a better person-how fair is that? For me, there is no one I had rather spend my time with.
Good luck in this-hard road anyway.

doggiediva posted 4/11/2014 09:02 AM

IMHO, the WS who reforms, works on himself/herself, will realize that there is a part of you that he/she has lost, FOREVER..Your belief and respect in him..

Even with successful R some of this belief and respect for a WS will always be GONE..

As a couple you will go thru the motions and work of R.. You guys as a couple will make every attempt rebuild a life that is mutually satisfying for both of you..

There are many success stories..

But there will always be that something lost..I think that it is this LOSS that both people IN TRUE R are processing, learning to accept if that makes sense..

The WS can work to improve himself/herself, but neither of you can EVER run away from the fact that the WS is capable of betraying you, and in fact did, in the very worst way...

In other words if the WS has a conscience he or she will NEVER be able to run away from himself or herself..There will be no before or after, only eternity...

[This message edited by doggiediva at 9:19 AM, April 11th (Friday)]

cvs2kkids posted 4/11/2014 09:39 AM

Still Going;

Maybe the reference to DUI should have been left out and just said a random accident. If that offended you, I apologize.

The point I was trying to make is sometimes the WS doesn't get off free in R.

My wife is the WS. It ads to her anxiety attacks and depression. Even though she's the WS, the emotional/psychological reactions have been almost reversed. She's punishing herself and feels worthless. D/S wouldn't punish her more than she already is. So it's not a revenge tactic in my case.

For Breezy, acting out for revenge may not be in her best interest. It won't make the pain of the affair go away. In fact, if the WS seems to move on pretty well, it may make the BS feel worse. As long as Mr. Breezy is genuine, I feel that's the best avenue to go. Revenge, in most cases, won't make the BS feel any better (as alawys pointed out about a RA).

I'm a God fearing Christian, so if that offends anyone, stop reading.

I've always believed (and it's not easy)on forgiveness. It's more for the benefit of the victim then the perpetrator. Now mind you, I won't be walked on, but there's a difference.

We're still dealing with the consequences of the A, but I am in a good place compared to some here. I prayed for myself and for my wife and I am happier. Almost to the point of indifference. No antiversaries, minimal to no triggers. Some pain and reflection in the quiet times, but have made a conscious choice to move forward. I may not have followed SI for beginners to a tee, but are working on repairing and rebuilding.

I was a mess to for awhile, but am in a happy place now.

Breezy150 posted 4/11/2014 09:49 AM

Thank you all for your thoughtful responses. I appreciate every point of view very much.

Yes divorce would hurt him very much. The only friends or family that he had in his life have turned thier backs on him, mostly because of the A. He has no support system at all except me. My kids want me away from him more than anything. He would rebuild his life after D but it would be very hard without me and my family. Losing my mother alone, may just push him to things unspeakable.

I am getting a blessing and a little council from my brother today, my dad and my brother are the only ones that don't know exactly what happened, I am hoping for some insight from my brother through his priesthood.

I may have to separate just to get a feel for me and what I want.

I don't really like the analogy of the drunk driver only because to fit this situation he would have to come out of prison a changed man and magically enjoy a wonderful relationship with his victim. Strangers are different than your spouse, if you hurt a stranger you go to jail. If you hurt your spouse nothing.

Breezy150 posted 4/11/2014 10:00 AM

I am not looking at D or S as revenge, that is not at all what I want, I don't believe in revenge at all, I do believe in consequences. If he was active in our church he would be disfellowshipped until he had worked through all of the phases of repentance. That is how I look at S, he is disfellowshipped from us until he does some work, and makes my M somewhere I want to be.

Sad in AZ posted 4/11/2014 10:12 AM

I struggled with this concept in my dealings with the X. I wanted to R, but in my case, he wanted to sweep everything under the rug--no, even worse, he didn't see the harm in having a girlfriend AND a wife, at least until he tired of the girlfriend--his words exactly. So, I wasn't looking at true R.

You can take my musings or leave them, as we wound up D--and it was my choice:

If you are seeing true remorse from your WS, if he is SHOWING you that he can repent and become the man you need, he is facing consequences. He has to live with the fact that he hurt you deeply and damaged the M. Your choice of consequence--separation--seems punitive and counterproductive to reconciliation. Also, wanting him, alone, to make the M a place where you want to be is not possible. It takes two to work on the M; one or the other of you doing the work alone is a fools errand.

Breezy150 posted 4/11/2014 10:24 AM

We couldn't do a formal separation, basically in house not sleeping together. Doing work together without having to be together all the time.

I have no idea if he is truly remorseful because he is such a good con man. He seems to be doing well with a few slips into early thinking but we are still early in the process, I slip into old patterns too probably more than him.

StillGoing posted 4/11/2014 10:31 AM

I wasn't offended, I was disagreeing.

The value of the consequences people face varies between individuals. What some people see as serious consequences others may see as a soft touch.

Razor posted 4/11/2014 10:45 AM

IMO no WS will ever suffer the level of consequences we do. For example my WW says she never thinks of her LTA unless I bring it up. She is able to sorta forget it and move on. Whereas I cant.

Whats important is what you feel. How you deal with it (if you can at all). Dont base your recovery on what your WS is feeling. All thats required is that you feel at least somewhat safe that your WS wont cheat again.

Even if our WS say they feel this or that we cant know whether thats the truth or not. It could be just another lie. A manipulation engineered to make us feel they get is and so to get us to shut up about it. Despite all possible assurances we will never really know if we are getting the truth or not.

We cant control our WS. We cant make them feel what we want them to feel. We cant make them feel remorse or empathy. They either do these things on their own or they dont. And really theres absolutely nothing we can do to change that.

So it could be that basing our recovery on our WS is like our WS basing their happiness on us. Unhealthy. And a fast path to disaster.

In the end the sad truth of it all (IMO) is that they got to play and we get to pay. I dont see anyway of getting around that. It is what it is. Flowery words and beliefs that our WS feel at least some pain over what they did really dont count for much.

doggiediva posted 4/11/2014 10:52 AM

I wish my WH had been kind enough to go when I wanted to kick him out..A few weeks after D day..His response to my asking him to leave would have spoken volumes to me about his decency, sense of fairness..Promptly leaving and supporting himself while living somewhere else, would have shown me that he cared about my peace of mind, and space to think without daily triggers..It would have shown me that he wanted to do the right thing by me instead of taking advantage of me..

But my WH responded by saying hell no, you will have to force me out..

Not that I think separation is punishment, but a WS's response to being asked to leave can give us much needed answers..

Living for a time without the trigger and turmoil of WH in daily contact with us can give us the peace and space to decide whether to R or D..

For me it was all about my WH's actions in helping me in the aftermath of what he did.There was no going back to the shitty marriage that we had..

My WH did not step up to the plate, he does not want to face what he did...WH says I drove him to cheating, to going outside of the marriage for sex, excitement, etc..

My WH wasn't offered the option of R..

He could care less..

My WH wants to take advantage of me..

For some people consequences mean nothing anyway..

So we have to do what heals us best, from day to day..

[This message edited by doggiediva at 11:10 AM, April 11th (Friday)]

Breezy150 posted 4/11/2014 11:05 AM

Thank you Razor, I really appreciate your response. It makes a lot of sense to me. I tend to over think everything and try to make it make sense, I don't feel safe if something doesn't make sense to me so the A has really thrown me for a loop.

Doggiediva I agree, my WH works out of state a couple weeks a month and I just don't trigger as bad when he is gone, I am now explaining to him that right now he is the trigger. I think if I move downstairs for awhile just to know I have my own space, we can still work together but I get that feeling of some separation.

Thanks to all that have replied it has turned my way of thinking, WH will never suffer as much as me and that is something I have to accept to offer R, because the chance to R is a gift that only I own and only I can give, not him.

cvs2kkids posted 4/11/2014 11:10 AM

Living for a time without the trigger and turmoil of WH in daily contact with us can give us the peace and space to decide whether to R or D..

For many though, not keeping in touch with the WS would add to the anxiety.

It's certainly a case-by-case basis.

Razor posted 4/11/2014 11:17 AM

For many though, not keeping in touch with the WS would add to the anxiety.

For me its that way.

WWs LTA involved travel. For the second half of her LTA she flew several thousand miles to see OM under the guise of *visiting friends*. She did this at least 1 time very month. During this time I supported and even encouraged her to do this.

Now whenever she travels without me I trigger. For me this is a permanent consequence.

whattheh posted 4/11/2014 11:33 AM

My fWH has suffered many more consequences because we decided to stay together and R instead of D. My approach has been to share everything with him that I think feel or fear. So he has a very clear understanding of what his cheating has done to me, him and our M.

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