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I don't feel like I'm doing enough

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Jovie posted 4/22/2014 09:28 AM

BH has changed SOOO much since he decided to get clean. It's like I'm married to a different person. He never used to be affectionate and now he hugs and kisses me all the time and says he doesn't even have to actively think about doing it, he just wants to do it!! This was a GINORMOUS issue for us in the past. Like years and years of resentment and therapy. He says he feels so different and I can see the differences in him so obviously.

Me on the other hand, I'm not sure. I feel like I should be doing more and changing more. When I brought it up in counseling, IC asked what I think I should be doing. But I'm not sure exactly what. Exploring myself more, digging more, Idk, just changing more. I haven't read too much, but I think I'll start by reading Not Just Friends, since that is recommended here a lot. I feel like my IC sessions are not very focused and there is a lot of dead air time, so maybe I should look into a new IC. It's all so intangible. I feel like I need specific things I should be doing so I can cross them off my list. But I just don't know what.

Get out the 2x4s, but part of me feels like I justified my A because of BHs behaviors and now that we have such a different dynamic, I just feel so happy and hopeful for us in the future that I can't really imagine falling back into the rut I was in and the despair I felt before. But I want to be better. And I want to do things the right way so that we can move forward and be healthy and happy.

What other types of things should I be actively doing??

brokeback posted 4/22/2014 09:47 AM

No 2x4's from me.

I agree that many times the affair is a symptom of something being broken in the marriage. That was certainly the case in my marriage. No excuse for my affair. My wife and I know now what we need to work on and how there was a breakdown in our relationship.

I think finding a new therapist might help.

Also, engaging in things you love to do for you and a couple is important to maintain emotional happiness and intimacy. Being 100 percent honest and in touch w emotions and needs. Never holding back for fear of hurting someone. Stay open.

That's all I have right now


[This message edited by brokeback at 9:47 AM, April 22nd (Tuesday)]

Aubrie posted 4/22/2014 10:28 AM

many times the affair is a symptom of something being broken in the marriage.
No. Its a broken person in a broken marriage that does that. A bazillion marriages have issues. Not everyone cheats. Broken people cheat.

So you patch the marriage up. Yay. What about the broken individual? Fix the individual, and wow. Ch-ch-ch-chaaanges! All the way around.

I was broken. Did I think that fixing me after my affairs would cause me to lose unhealthy friendship, create new healthy ones, loose my FOO, look at past abuse, and *gasp* DEAL with it? Absolutely not. But it did. Someone accused me of being bitter recently. My husband busted out laughing and said, "Bitter? You mean Better!" Fixing me has changed everything. My dynamic with QS. My relationship with my kids. Random strangers. Friends. Relatives. Every facet of my life is different.

Jovie, read. Read every book that you think could possibly relate to your situation. And if there is dead air space with your IC, get a new one. Get one that works specifically with infidelity. You need an IC that challenges you. One that makes you think. You should be in motion. Constantly moving toward the goal of being healthy. It's ok to rest and tread water. But don't you tread too much, you'll eventually sink. Keep swimming.

brokeback posted 4/22/2014 10:47 AM

We can respectfully agree to disagree.

I think having an affair can be destructive to many relationships and obviously be a catalyst to ending many marriages.

In some marriages, however, when both parties are willing to go inward to see what went wrong in a marriage/relationship/partnership, the marriage can grow and evolve and mature and move forward and become stronger and build a new relationship w sound communication and understanding of each other's needs.

I believe this is the case in my marriage. It's not just the WS that needs to do work. Sorry.

[This message edited by brokeback at 10:49 AM, April 22nd (Tuesday)]

Deeply Scared posted 4/22/2014 11:00 AM


I think you're talking about something completely different than the affair itself.

Working on the marriage is a great thing to do...we did that as well. However getting to the issues of the affair is solely on the WS.

There is nothing the BS can do to help through that process...the WS is the one that broke their vows and in the process destroyed their own credibility. They (we) are the only ones that can repair that type of damage.

Martial issues are one thing...affair issues are in a completely different ballpark...imho.

Aubrie posted 4/22/2014 11:08 AM

Everybody knows the "three things have to heal in a relationship. WS, BS, marriage" concept. I don't deny that.

Was having the affair worth it brokeback? What if your BS hadn't decided to R? What if six months from now she snaps and can't take it anymore? Was the ego stroke from your AP worth all the damage you have inflicted? Was it worth all the agony and heartache?

Yeah. My husband was and still is a jerk sometimes. (Who isn't) Still no reason for me to cheat. Even with excuses and whys. No reason is ever good enough to justify the affair. Enter - crap sandwich. Which our BS is forced to eat. Affairs don't save anything. They are by definition, a desctructive tool to ruin relationships. Not fix them.

The risk is immense. Some of us are dang lucky we have a BS that sticks around. The frigging affair didn't save our marriage. We saved ourselves from the raging wildfire I created. We survived in spite of it. Not because of it.

Sorry for the t/j Jovie. I'll not encroach on your thread any further.

BrokenButTrying posted 4/22/2014 18:38 PM

At the moment, from the outside, it would appear that I'm not doing very much to heal myself. If I'm honest, I have taken a step back in the last few weeks.

There are a few reasons why. I'm having some health issues that need to get sorted, there's been a family crisis which has upset me and needs some attention, both my grandparents are very poorly. So no, I'm not reading or journal writing very much right now.

That doesn't mean I'm not still working on myself though. I'm still on SI every spare minute, I'm still in IC and I'm still applying everything I've learned in the last four months to every day situations (boundaries etc)

Even the things that are preventing me actively working on myself are providing me opportunities for growth. My new coping mechanisms are being tested with the family crisis and my grandparent's illness.

So, your changes and your personal growth my not be happening over night but don't doubt that they are happening. Try not to compare yourself to your BH. It is a life long marathon, not a sprint.

Keep going, I'm rooting for you!

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