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Are they R's in different levels?

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TICKED OFF posted 4/25/2014 17:43 PM

I ask this question because there seems to be so many different levels of R in the aftermath of an a. There are definitely many levels of emotions post a that we as bs's go through. And yes we all go through many levels of R during that process if in fact we stay together.

However, from my own experience I think there comes a time when R is as good as it is going to get in the marriage, months or maybe years later. I wonder if there is true R as opposed to just learning to live with the ws in a whole new life of the now tainted marriage. In my situation, I am sure I have reached the level of R with my fwh (10 years out now) that is more of a settling level rather than a so called "true R" or what we strived for pre a. Get what I mean????

unfound posted 4/25/2014 20:12 PM

I get what you mean. There probably are different "levels" of R, depending on what is acceptable to the BS, what the WS is willing to do, and then there's the maintaining long term. R at 6 months compared to 6 years is vastly different.

What true R to me isn't going to be what true R to you is (or anyone else). I believe there comes a point and time where healthy, positive change has been made, established and is now "normal", with the continual tweaking (not major crap, just life crap) and awareness.

What is true R to you? What were you striving for then that you don't have now? Is it acceptable and a place where you can be happy and content?

AFrayedKnot posted 4/25/2014 21:30 PM

I think that just as marriage issues are separate from the A's, they are also separate from R.

I think that R is achieved when certain levels of acceptance, forgiveness, and trust are reached. Creating a happy satisfying relationship is a journey separate from R.

rachelc posted 4/25/2014 21:57 PM

A lot of people here wouldn't be in their marriage unless it has potential to be or is great. They won't settle for anything less, -after dealing with all that pAin. Others are settling or in a good enough marriage. Yep you'll see all kinds here. Wert posted recently that his wife is the cherry on top of his ice cream, and the ice cream would be plenty enjoyable without the cherry.

I'm currently trying to figure out if mine CAN be great.

Bobbi_sue posted 4/26/2014 03:08 AM

This is why I don't believe in timelines, especially the 2-5 years timeline we always hear about here.

In my case, my H and I communicate better and are closer than we ever were before the A, but this is one case. (8 years out now). I think more often it is probably as you described, at some point couples settle on living with what happened, maybe even considering the marriage "tainted." I do not look at my marriage that way, 8 years later. I look at us as a couple who have survived many ups and downs, a couple committed to continuing our lives together until death parts us.

I look at R as more of a decision than something you describe as "true R". If I were to try to describe what I think you and others mean by this "true R" I don't really go along with the concept of levels of R though I do understand there are levels of happiness, security and other good (or not so good) things in any given marriage. I guess I think people feel there will almost be a magical day when you wake up and it is as if the A never happened.

No, everything and all experiences in life become who you are, how you grow and change, for better or worse, throughout your life. Events don't just go away as if they never occurred at some point in "healing" IMO.

Back to my own view of R being a decision, rather than some point on a timeline, I feel my H and I were R'ed within about two months, not 2 or 5 years. This is because we were both committed to staying together, we were planning our futures together, sharing intimacy, living life as any other married couple with daily ups and downs. Of course, I always had the option to change my mind if new information or continuing A related behaviors occurred but based on the information I had, I made the decision to stay with him and his commitment to me was also obvious.

And the fact that there was an A, and even the fact my first H was a serial cheater whom I divorced are part of who I am today. I don't expect to ever "forget" that though most of the time I am not living in the pain of the past. Certain songs and events can take me back there, and bring sadness. But I embrace this all as part of life rather than hoping some day I will hear the same song or experience the same events and they won't have that effect (of taking me back there).

So some do settle and feel their marriage was tainted. It is still a choice to stay married. Others actually end up with an improved marriage. Still others may have a marriage that is about the same in many ways as it was before the A occurred. (And some divorce, of course). But this is just life, people and the specific dynamics and details involved, not something that follows a pattern.

deena04 posted 4/26/2014 08:18 AM

I completely agree different levels of R exist. There are those that know their marriage can and will be fantastic with the work. There are those that think maybe, so I'll try it. There are those that think they need to stay for the kids, bills, age, or whatever...although I wouldn't call that real R unless they actually want it and try. There are those that just don't divorce and really think they will, but discover they R along the way. So many levels, timeframes, scenarios, and such play into it.

still-living posted 4/26/2014 14:04 PM

I have reached a point where it seems there is not much more I can do, or at least, the payoff is not worth the energy.

In the beginning I easily and significantly enhanced my efforts and played harder my world view and beliefs. It provided me with instant life improvement.

Roughly 6 months later, understanding my original game plan would not carry me forever, I started researching and learning about psychology, FOO, etc, etc., and it provided me with additional comfort. It changed my world views and beliefs. It was intriguing. I learned a lot. Ignorance truly is bliss.

Now, 5 years post D-day, the drive to learn is gone. I feel like an elder. I'm not sure what more I can do or learn. I continued hanging around here validating my new word view and beliefs. It was great for a while, but now I become annoyed with the ignorance and results. My emotions are dull. Life seems predictable. Peace is boring. I need a new chapter in life.

I have been thinking that I would like to capture my experience, like in a diary or autobiography, or something to pass to my kids and grand children, but it's still too embarrassing right now. Another option is to volunteer and help troubled people. Also thinking about investing in organizational and industrial psychology because my engineering work environment drastically needs it.

I'm not sure yet, but the flame, drive, spark of marriage, sex, and building a ginger bread house isn't there anymore. At the same time, I'm not complaining.

As for the time it takes to heal, it depends on the extent of the trauma, where you start, which paths you choose, the help you get, and how hard you face it. It's not the time you need, but the work done during the time. Some choose to walk and do nothing. Some choose to ignore and never heal. Whatever floats your boat.


[This message edited by still-living at 2:18 PM, April 26th (Saturday)]

LovelyDaffodils posted 4/27/2014 15:55 PM

I think my WH wants the kind where he does no work. That we just try to communicate better. That he supposedly has learned boundaries and will stick with them. The problem is my distrust is driving me farther away. I'm not feeling he is invested enough to do the work, so of course why would he care enough to not cheat. So this sort of coasting along will never make me feel safe and I don't see that as a truly happy M.

Yeah, maybe we stay together in some sort of R, but will I always wish it was better?

hopefull77 posted 4/27/2014 16:54 PM

I think in my case the fact that H has done everything right has helped immensely ...he was on board to fix this instantly...although waiting for the fog to lift took a few weeks...his work in IC cleared the brain fog fairly quickly and then he was able to really see what a selfish man he had become...crossing all those lines etc...when he found the broken OW and got all googly eyed all his justications moved in his brain and hung around until I found his phone.
The thing that has kept us going is the love that he forgot about..even though I heard the I never stopped loving you and I knew I could never leave you crap
anyway I guess what I am trying to say is we love each other and now we are fighting so hard to have the marriage we truly want...
Stay the course...

kansas1968 posted 4/27/2014 17:04 PM

I absolutely get what you mean. It is a question I have pondered many, many, times. I thinkg what we would really like is for it to never have happened and we can just go on without that memeory. Of course, that is never going to happen, so we will forever mourn the loss of the marriage we thought we had.

Guttedagain posted 4/27/2014 17:30 PM

Kansas1968, I know that i wish it never happened and i know that wishing this is useless as this is now our reality. My husband says he will do anything for me, but he can't undo what he did, he can't turn back time. Just over a year out and i've found myself lurking more on si just now as i'm still struggling with the reality.

peoplepleaser posted 4/28/2014 09:14 AM

I think there are different levels of R that depend on the interaction of the BS and WS in the relationship.

For my WS, true remorse, full disclosure, vulnerability and the ability to explore and share the process of looking into FOO issues didn't come all at once. It was a slow gradual process. As we come through these and as she realizes the depth of what she did and the consequences of it how we interact and communicate has changed over time moving us further along in R.

Similarly my struggle with the pain of the EAs and the damage added to them by TT, gaslighting and blameshifting has impacted how we move toward R. Everyone has a different way of moving through these things, and it's not linear. So cycles of pain, anger and hurt interact with the WS's ability to receive and respond in a loving, humble and compassionate way. My ability to express what I'm feeling at appropriate times, communicate in a way that is constructive and work toward what I need to do for the relationship (because although I agree that the relationship issues are separate it seems to me that not adjusting to some of the needs of the WS with regard to them as you move toward R can impede progress, depending on the actual issues) also impact her ability to move through the realizations she needs as a WS.

IMHO, given all the extra influences, the situation, the nature of the A, the relationship issues pre-A and the path of disclosure, there are definitely different levels of R that occur uniquely or in varying ways among couples.

TICKED OFF posted 8/17/2014 16:19 PM

"still-living"…..I hear ya loud and clear. Ten years out now and I feel exactly like you. I keep myself happy and busy with things I love and things I like to do. H and I get along very well (very little discussion about a with our neighbor) but it just isn't the same and I can truthfully say that it never will be. He crossed the line. He wanted and cared for our neighbor more than he did me or our marriage. Though all is good with us, the spark is long gone on my end and perhaps even on his end.

RandomPhoenix posted 8/17/2014 16:49 PM

How long does forgiveness take?

sisoon posted 8/17/2014 16:53 PM

To me, R isn't a state of being. It's a process that pretty much exactly parallels the process of M.

At some point, the A-related issues get as resolved as they're going to get, but that still leaves us having to deal with new issues that inevitably arise. We each have to decide when we're satisfied with our ability to resolve our issues.

We all get to choose what we'll be satisfied with. Since we're all individuals, there'll be a lot of variation.

RandomPhoenix posted 8/17/2014 16:59 PM

I guess I should explain more... My husband cheated with a prostitute who was my polar opposite (although I am nt generally thought an uglywoman). In my heartbroken state,I revenge-cheated (was drunk, regretted it terribly, hardly remember. It, and fully confessed all I. DO remember). My husband does not seem to care that I cheated, and seems to feel some relief that I did (he cheated;so did I). I know in truth there is no difference, but, honestly, I never would have done if he had not broken my heart first. I also tried to kill myself, drank constantly, and engaged incutting, so I was trying to destroy myself every way i could. He thinks that because he doesn't care about my cheating, that I should not care about his. But his was deliberate and sober...not that it was worse or I would blame him for caring (I wish he was upset). But it feels like the motives were different, does that make sense to antone? I WANT him to hate me and feel bad like I do- that is why I did it; however, he does not. I am alone in my pain.

TICKED OFF posted 8/17/2014 17:13 PM

"Random" - throw that question out on General. You will get many more answers there and a lot of good advice.

"sisson" - YUP…..different on many levels. And you are so right. We all choose what we will be satisfied with. I have chosen my path and will be content with it.

BtraydWife posted 8/17/2014 17:44 PM

Lovelydaffodils- Your problem isn't your mistrust, it's that he's not willing to earn back your trust. Your mistrust is an acceptable response to his non action.


People enter into all kinds of marriages. So there will be all kinds of R.

If you are rugsweeping, that's not R. R implies some resolution and acceptance. That doesn't happen with rugsweeping. Rugsweeping eats people's souls from the inside. You can read posts about that here everday.

My marriage was good before the As. I'm not going to accept anything less than what I use to have. That's not the marriage I entered into and it's not one I'd settle for.

[This message edited by BtraydWife at 5:45 PM, August 17th (Sunday)]

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