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Alternatives to NC Letter

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DyingInside21 posted 5/2/2014 00:31 AM

It's been a while since I have posted.
Been reading and trying to gain perspective.

WH has been doing the work, although it's been hard and not as quick as I would like. We had a setback and I asked him to leave since he was having such trouble writing the NC letter. He went straight to his therapist.

He admitted to his therapist that the reason that the NC letter is so hard for him to write is that he is concerned the OW will get angry. He feels that she is unstable enough that she may try to stalk him or worse, me.
He didn't want to tell me himself because he didn't think I would buy his story (which I wouldn't have), but the therapist (with his consent) called me in to tell me what she feels is a genuine concern of his. He feels that if OW starts coming unglued, then that would shatter any hope of me staying and trying to R. And he is probably right.

He says that he and OW had an understanding that if he was to confess the A to me that things would be over between them and she said if he didn't chose her then she didn't want anything to do with him.
He says she hasn't contacted him since he told her that he would be confessing to me and he hasn't contacted her.

Therapist believes him based on what he told her. The therapist suggests that I come up with another way for him to satisfy my needs without the letter.

He has given me passwords and added me to his private bank account. He has taken time off of work and we go everywhere together when he is home from work. He is reading the books that I and the therapist have suggested. He is being attentive and checks in with me throughout the day. He tells me who he is speaking with on the phone and updates me on the conversations. He discusses things with me that he would normally just keep to himself.
I have never seen this level of consistent behavior from him before.

I cant let go of the fact that this was the ONE thing that I thought would make a statement that he was done and choosing me and our marriage and NOT her. Something I could say I knew because I saw it in writing.

Am I being petty for still wanting it? Should I risk our sanity and possibly safety by demanding it?
Is there another way for me to get him to "pay" for his infidelity without the formal NC letter?

What else can I ask him to do?

As much as things seem to be going in the right direction, I still have days of grief. He behaves so patiently and is warm and understanding when I lose it. He lets me cry it out and reassures me that he will do whatever it takes.

If I make him write it despite his fears or the therapists fears that she will not take it well or, as the therapist put it, "poking a sleeping tiger", and she does come around, I would feel like such a fool. I've got kids to worry about and I cant be sure what I may do if she did show up at my door one day.

Just not sure what else I can have him do.

Any suggestions??

crazynot posted 5/2/2014 00:58 AM

Others will certainly disagree. However, in this case I think it may be wise to go with what your husband's therapist advises. My question to you is, what are your deepest senses and instincts telling you about him, and where he is now? It certainly sounds like he's behaving remorsefully (I had two d-days 24 years apart and I know the difference).

DyingInside21 posted 5/2/2014 01:09 AM

My gut tells me that he was being honest with the therapist. I have spoken with her before and I trust her. She assures me that if she thought he was being untruthful that she would tell me.

She says she feels as though he understands that the slightest mistake on his part will cost him the marriage and he wants to do the right thing. She says she thinks that this is why he went to her first rather than telling me. He's afraid that if he keeps screwing up that I will give up and leave.

Again, he is doing all the other right things and I haven't had a reason to feel as though he is lying, but Im still insecure. This was a long EA and turned into a PA.
What makes me want some sort of declaration from him is that I wonder what he discussed with her over this long EA that would make her so angry and crazed at him sending her a letter? What did he promise her? Do I want to know?

He is back in the home because he had agreed to meet all of my conditions. But he couldn't bring himself to finish the NC letter for the reasons already stated. So, that is why he went to the therapist.
The therapist is suggesting that I wait to discuss this with him until I have come up with a good alternative that will satisfy my needs. But I cant think of any. I really want to discuss this with him, but I want a plan. I want an alternative.

Do I ask him to write it but not send it? Make him do the work for my own satisfaction?

confused615 posted 5/2/2014 04:18 AM

This is a common excuse. And that's all it excuse. It's right up there with the ONE is abusive so we can't tell them excuse.

If they had an agreement that if you found out and he chose you then she didn't want to see him again...that sounds like she is "reasonable."

That he said he would...then refused..and went and had his IC call you...I see that as manipulative. His IC May believe him...but he wouldn't be the first to lie to an IF.

I'd insist he send it. If she starts stalking then handle it legally.

Has he taken you to the storage unit yet?

OakStreet posted 5/2/2014 04:42 AM

My WH sat down and wrote a NC letter in the days after Dday 2. He had continued the A after Dday 1 and after we had both started IC and MC.

But the letter could not be sent. In the letter, he wrote that she or he would have to leave the job site - he is her supervisor. I worried about a sexual harassment lawsuit (still do).

So what's an alternative to the NC letter? I really don't know. I am currently in shell-shock mode after the second Dday.

Hopefully someone will have good advice for you this morning....and I can pick up on that.

Last Laugh posted 5/2/2014 04:54 AM

Maybe get a lawyer to send a letter saying no contact whatsoever and, in the event of her not complying, a RO willbe sought immediately.

Bigger posted 5/2/2014 05:03 AM

Hope the OW fades away?
Hope WH is totally committed?
Hope that some day he starts fearing losing you more than he fears OW?

Are you both clear on what a NC letter should contain?

I know this might only be a question of wording but there is IMHO immense difference between your WH having a hard time writing the letter and having a hard time SENDING the letter.

Whenever I see a WS having a “hard time writing” the letter I simply see that the goal and purpose of the NC letter isn’t understood. Basically a NC letter is a short, concise, as unemotional as possible notification informing that the affair is over, that the WS won’t ever be in contact again, a request that the OP respects this and the consequences if NC is broken. Sort of like:

“OP – I do not want to have any contact in any way or form whatsoever with you so I can work on saving my marriage. I ask that you respect this and also refrain from contacting me in any way or from. Any breach from this request will be shared with my wife and can lead to legal action. WS”

Even such simple things like saying “I can’t be having…” instead of “I do not want…” can be significant. The former implies he has no choice and would have contact if he could, the later that he has decided and is committed.

When I see a WS having a hard time WRITING the letter it tends to be because they want to explain why, what could have happened at another time and another place, regrets and so on. None of that matters!
In fact – the OP reactions to the letter tend to be completely irrelevant. You see – the NC letter is more of a letter of intent from the WS. If OP wants to camp in your yard and stage a hunger-strike… so be it. You deal with possible future contact as it comes along. As long as WH does not contact her and notifies you of any attempt to contact from her then the NC letter is doing its job.

It does require some concessions from you: You can’t be angry at your husband if the OW tries to break NC as long as he tells you. You might have to make that clear to him beforehand.

And the crazy OW story…. We get that all the time.

jb3199 posted 5/2/2014 05:40 AM

I know this might only be a question of wording but there is IMHO immense difference between your WH having a hard time writing the letter and having a hard time SENDING the letter.


Personally, under your explained circumstance, I would have expected your WH to write the NC letter immediately, but be hesitant to mail it. He could have easily gave the NC letter to you, or his therapist, with an explanation of his concerns. It would then be your decision if you wanted it sent or not.

Again, like Bigger, it is his difficulty in writing the NC letter that stands matter how well his other behaviors/actions have been progressing.

LifeisCrazy posted 5/2/2014 07:18 AM

If this is truly the case and your husband is taking all the proper steps toward reconciliation - have him write a no contact letter and send it.... to YOU.

YOU are the one who needs to be satisfied that the OW is truly out of both of your lives. That requires your husband to be remorseful and open. If he is then there will be no question that if the OW should contact him, YOU will know.

As a BS I wanted to see my wife put down, in words, a defining statement of commitment to me as well as a solid end of the affair. It had to satisfy ME - which is why we all recommend that NC letters be sent from both of you. After I read it I even made a few tweaks and gave it back to her so that she could see where my perspective didn't jive with hers - which was helpful to both of us.

To me, it was far more important that my wife write the NC letter and really mean it than it was for the AP to ever receive it. The letter's intent was the point of the whole process.

tushnurse posted 5/2/2014 07:32 AM

Nope not buying it. Does his IC have ANY experience dealing with infidelity????
I somehow doubt it. If so then I would want to know of those she has helped how many have saved their M's. Cause she is giving really bad advice, and your H, well he is manipulating you both.

NC is essential. Yah I get not poking the bear, but the bear doesn't even know she shouldn't be poked. See what I'm saying.

Read Bigger's post again. The NC letter part especially. This shouldn't be some big difficult thing. And the concern of the AP coming unhinged is the MOST common excuse to NOT send a NC. Number two is her spouse will come unhinged and beat her.

Although this seems unique to you. IT's not. There are really quite routine responses and behaviors of both the WS and BS. Try not to fall into the trap. Stand strong. You deserve more than the manipulations, and lack of respect.

((((and strength))))

Furious1 posted 5/2/2014 08:01 AM

I'm not buying it either. The NC letter isn't about him and his fears of what will happen if he writes it. It's about doing what you need to heal. There is only one circumstance when I do not believe a NC letter should be written and that is when it's a work A and he is her boss.

So what if OW gets angry. This isn't about making him "pay" for his infidelity. It doesn't matter what agreement they had between them about the end of the A. This is between you and him. It doesn't have to be elaborate or incite a riot. Example:

"I have confessed to DyingInside21. The A is over and I want no further contact with you."

I can't help but get the feeling that he's hiding something and that the reason he is afraid of sending the NC letter is because he's afraid OW will reveal whatever it is he might not have told you. I would ask him if he as afraid sending the NC letter might cause OW to reveal details to you that he has not shared with you.

Chinadoll30 posted 5/2/2014 12:04 PM

I had my H write the nC letter and give it to me. It helped him to write it, and me to read it. But since there has been no contact between them since dday, I am just holding on to it. If she tries, I will send it to her. And if not, it at least helped both of us to read/write it.

99lawdog99 posted 5/2/2014 12:14 PM

With my wife, when she decided to end it she insisted that she had to go and tell him personally. I freaked out and told her no way, but she insisted. When she went she stayed in phone contact with me. At first she wanted to go to his house but decided to meet him at a doughnut shop. I later learned that she had to tell him personally to make sure he knew it was her idea. About a month before she sent him a text to leave her alone as she wanted to make her marriage work. That lasted two weeks until he contacted her again and she wound up sleeping with him again because he convinced her how depressed he was without her. She told me he didn't beleive she sent the previous text and thought I did it and was forcing her to not see him. She told me she had to tell him personally to make sure he knew she was serious. I now see why she had to do it.

[This message edited by 99lawdog99 at 12:14 PM, May 2nd (Friday)]

krsplat posted 5/2/2014 12:20 PM

My experience is a little similar to yours in terms of the "sleeping tiger" problem. In our case, my WH did send the letter, and the OW did respond by upping the crazy factor. It's gotten a little scary, actually.

However, I am still glad that he sent it, and would do it again the same way. I really needed to know that he was serious about NC, and that she got the message he would never return to her under any circumstances, even if he and I split up.

Only you can decide if the risk if worth the gain.

Would it help you to have your WH just write the letter? To have him articulate how he feels and have it available to you in a form you can read and re-read as needed? And have you/can you talk with the counselor about your fears that this is just an excuse for your WH not to have to finalize things with her?

KeepCalm_CarryOn posted 5/2/2014 12:28 PM

In our situation a NC was never sent/written. The day he confessed, he called her BH, told him and when she called to talk to my FWH he didn't pick up. There was never any contact after that.

I did not demand a NC letter because I did not want to open the lines of communication again.

IF you trust his IC and IF you believe him that oW could hop on the crazy train and

you believe there is no communication I would consider letting this one go.

ShiningAutumn8 posted 5/2/2014 12:32 PM

I don't buy it at all.

If she were so unhinged and unreasonable, how would she have just been like "okay, if you confess we'll have no more contact" with no problem? Yet if she gets a letter, she will go unhinged? Makes no sense. If it doesn't make sense, it isn't true.

So I agree with you its complete BS. Who cares if the IC believes him, I think you know the situation much better.

Also, please note it is impossible to ever be sure there has been NC. You never can know for sure. You just cant. Have you reviewed his cell phone detail records (call/msgs logs to confirm there has been no contact via the cell?)

A NC letter makes it clear to the AP that the affair is over. Yes it also serves some purpose of reassuring the BS. But IMO writing a NC letter and showing it to the WS but not sending it, is basically worth nothing. Its no different than "words" in the sense of words v actions. I NC letter written but sent is just words. SENDING it is the action that is so important.

Hold your ground on this. Tell him you are not concerned about her becoming unhinged, as you will both deal with that together if it happens.

I agree he's most likely concerned that the OW will contact you after the letter, and blow the cover over the lies he has told you.

Sorry but Ive never hard a 5 year EA. Adults don't go 5 years in a EA with someone IN THEIR TOWN and not turn physical sooner than that.

Sometimes things are really as simple as they seem: He wont send the NC letter b/c either he's still in the A, wants the option of the A in the future, or is more concerned with OW's feelings than yours. All the rest is just smoke and mirrors designed to persuade you otherwise for his own benefit.

DyingInside21 posted 5/2/2014 13:36 PM

So I have decided to insist that he write the letter but that I will hold onto it. I still want it written.

If he makes no contact, and I am comfortable that he hasn't, then I won't send it.
If she makes contact, but he tells me right away, I won't send it. If she makes contact and he delays in telling me, I send it.

I am going to address my suspicions with him that I think he is afraid she will contact me and tell me things he hasn't already confessed. Give him a chance to confess it before she does. Or maybe she will make shit up. I don't know. But I will feel better knowing that he did the work in writing it. It's the effort put forth in writing it that is more important to me.

I actually do not believe they are still in A nor do I believe they are in any contact currently, but that is just my gut.

He needs (in my opinion since I know him) to pay for his sins and writing this letter is a way for him to do that because it's NOT what he would do typically. He likes to avoid dealing with things and he doesn't set boundaries, which is why this was so important to me. It's much easier for him to just walk away and hope everything works out.

I am comfortable with the compromise of having him write it and to let me keep it unless and until I feel the need to send it. My choice to send it based on his behavior going forward.

Thank you for all the feedback. I was up all night going back and forth and when I came to a decision, to read that some of you came to similar conclusions was helpful. Made me feel less crazy.

Again, I am dealing with more than just his A, and the things that come with that, but a lot of character/personality issues that also need to be fixed/changed in order for things to move forward. This is why we aren't even close to being ready for MC. Still doing IC for each of us. He has behavioral changes he has to work through that wont happen overnight. I am willing to be patient for some of them, but not all.

*Oh, my mom has seen the contents of the storage unit. She lives close by. She doesn't know about A, but just that he might have some antique furniture she might be interested in buying for her new house.

I emailed the therapist with my decision. Haven't heard her feedback yet.

ShiningAutumn8 posted 5/2/2014 14:14 PM

I stand by the contention that a NC written but not nothing.

Its just words. There's no difference in words spoken and words written. IM sure its a nice exercise and all that...but please. This just reinforces to him and he AP that there are no consequences to the affair. Boo hoo..he had to take pen to paper and write some words. Seriously?

SENDING a letter is an actual action with an effect.

This is no compromise. This is you getting maniplated and him skirting consequences.

Also, this whole idea of you sending the letter...again that is off point. The point of a NC is for the wayward to send it.

Im not trying to be harsh. Ultimately, you have to be comfortable with your own decisions. but I think there is a bit of "sparkly unicorn" floating around here in this if him just writing (but not sending) a letter actually MEANS something...

C'mon, he was Fucking this lady for 1 year!! (probably more) And a creative writing assignment is to somehow make up for this?

[This message edited by ShiningAutumn8 at 2:16 PM, May 2nd (Friday)]

krsplat posted 5/2/2014 17:23 PM

ShiningAutumn, I am going to respectfully disagree with you. You are not the one with the spectre of a vengeful OW on your doorstep screaming things while your children listen. I've been there, and its terrifying.

You can offer advice and your opinions, but please don't keep pushing someone who has made the best decision she can under difficult circumstances.

Skan posted 5/2/2014 18:57 PM

If your gut is telling you that what your WH is telling you is probably the truth, then I think that you have come to a good compromise. Remember, you can always change your mind later and have a NC letter sent at that time. Also, I guess I'm of the Don't Poke The Sleeping Cucumber camp since the main objective to me, is the breaking off of the A.

While he's writing his NC letter for you, I'd tell him that I'd like a recommitment letter to YOU as well, as in, why he's recommitting to you, what he's willing to do, etc. Seems like a good exercise for someone who seems to be writing-disabled.

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