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I asked for the timeline and it is killing me

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JustOneMoreDay posted 5/11/2014 12:21 PM

I am one of those people that needs details. Really wish I wasn't. Over the past six weeks, I have asked WS for a timeline. He wrote one but it was not what I wanted. He left out dates and wrote zero detail.

Thursday, we discussed this with our new MC and she told him he needed to write it, in detail, with dates and all, by the next appt(or at least the shell of it to be added to as things come up). She called bullshit on the fact that he says he can't remember dates an told him to get out a calendar. He wrote out the first time in great detail. Told me about the second and third but hasn't written them down yet. I'm a mess. This is killing me. I need to be able to process this information but I truly feel like I am dying of sadness. He left nothing sacred or special for us. It's all gone. I am so devastated.

Do I keep going on the timeline or not? Is this a normal reaction?

pendant posted 5/11/2014 12:36 PM

A timeline is crucial if your want transparency and intend to R.As I would not believe a word that came out of FWH mouth, I printed all phone records, emails and created my own. We went over it together, half way through he broke down and filled in the blanks. Then I received sickening information of what he did over the course of our marriage- every time I my gut screamed that something was up. He has to do the hard work to gain your trust right now/he needs to focus on you for a change. Keep pushing for details.

sisoon posted 5/11/2014 13:10 PM

I wanted all the bad stuff out as soon as possible. If there was a deal killer in the mix, I didn't want to waste time in R, and I was afraid I'd lose my resolve if a deal killer came out 6 months down the line.

Also, I think I knew instinctively, the more detail I got, the more I could be sure my W was coming clean.

I think the devastation is normal, and I think the earlier you face it, the earlier you'll resolve it. I especially asked questions when I feared the answer.

I think you should dig, but I'm biased. You've got to - and you've got all the resources you need to - figure out what's best for you.

JustOneMoreDay posted 5/11/2014 13:39 PM

Thanks for the replies. They definitely help.

I don't know how to process the information he is giving me. It's so big and it's so painful. I'm in IC but other than that, I have no one to talk to about it. I feel utterly alone with this and I am not coping well.

RedRose posted 5/11/2014 20:42 PM

It is painful to hear all of the details on a timeline, but for me at least, the details help me from wondering about what happened all the time. I also really wanted a timeline, and after nine months and a final ultimatum, I did get one - just not the one I expected. It lacked major details, skipped from December to April despite a second Dday in February, and was just plain wrong in some respects. WH didn't put the effort in that I expected, and honestly, deserved. We then went through it all verbally, with the phone bills and texts I had printed out, but the lack of initial effort has been a major hit to my desire to R.

I am glad that you are in IC and MC, so you have someone to talk it over with - and great that your MC calls him on his BS!

OakStreet posted 5/11/2014 20:46 PM

I got a timeline about a month after Dday. I thought it was helpful, but painful, information.
Because now there were "no secrets" that THEY knew, but I didn't.

Of course, WH left out a few details: like the fact that he continued the A while we were in IC/MC.

The bastard.

Jbluebird posted 5/11/2014 22:24 PM

My WH completed a time line & it was devastating. BUT I am glad he did. There were things I had no inkling of on there that broke my already broken heart. Point is, it did show a huge step towards transparency and also a tiny dust speck of trust deposited in the bank. I was able to go through and verify with things I already knew & check into the new things he told me... painful but necessary, imo.

Jrazz posted 5/11/2014 22:31 PM

If it is reading like he really opened up, I say just take it in pieces that you can manage, and put it somewhere safe when you can't.

The fact that he wrote it out is an excellent indicator that he is ready to do the work required to help heal your heart. It's just so unfortunate that it has to be smashed over and over with the new details before everything bottoms out.

I think that it's even worse when a spouse refuses to do the timeline, or claims forgetfulness. Even in the event that drugs or alcohol or mental illness is involved, there is a fair amount of bullshit mixed in when the WS claims not to be able to recall anything. They KNOW the truth, and handing it over to the BS, not matter how devastating the details are, is a critical step towards an authentic relationship.

You may be able to create new sacred and special things once the dust has settled. For now, please try to find some solace in the fact that he is finally being honest. I know it hurts anyway. I'm so sorry.


Ostrich80 posted 5/12/2014 02:46 AM

I don't see how you could truly heal without all the facts...timeline especially. Of course its going to hurt like a bitch, especially special days and events that were yours exclusively. I never got one but just seeing that ws contact ow during our anniversary dinner damn near did me in. I hope you get all of your answers.

vivere posted 5/12/2014 07:03 AM

Do I keep going on the timeline or not?

I never got a written timeline. I wish I had insisted. Occasionally I have doubts that I know the whole story. It undermines my confidence that we are able to reconcile.

To have a complete, written timeline would be a great base to build from I would imagine, much better than my disjointed spoken one...peppered with TT.

I am sure it is very difficult to read but without it you will continue to have unanswered questions.

JustOneMoreDay posted 5/12/2014 08:12 AM

Maybe we are including the wrong things in the timeline....

He is including the sexual details which I asked for. I thought I needed them(and still do think that although I am crushed right now) but he is just about had a nervous breakdown talking about them and I feel like I am one step away from crossing over a psychological boundary I won't be able to uncross. However, I also feel like it all needs to be out Are we doing this wrong?

Lonelygirl10 posted 5/12/2014 08:46 AM

I remember throwing up after I read his timeline. Seeing it written in front of me somehow made everything more real. But, I'm glad I got it. I'm the type of person that needs details too. Of course, he intentionally left some details off that he knew would hurt things worse. So don't automatically assume a timeline means honesty.

stormrider38 posted 5/12/2014 08:59 AM

Wow, I am glad I am not the only one that needs details, I hate the fact I need to know all that happened. I understand what you are going through, mine says she doesn't know what all happened on the other attempts to do it again, an there is a large window of time when she was with someone that she cant explain, which makes it worse. Id keep going for it as time may bring it out on the table, sounds like you need to know as well as I to be able to process things to go forward. Good luck

ButterflyGirl posted 5/12/2014 09:27 AM

If there was a deal killer in the mix, I didn't want to waste time in R,

This ^^^

I needed details. We recovered deleted texts and pictures from his phone, and I about died, but I was stilling willing to work on things.

Then I found out he involved the kids, forcing them to lie to me about seeing her, and I WAS DONE. Definite dealbreaker for me.

Your WH needs to face what he has done and own up to it. And you need to make your decisions given all the facts.

10yearsafter posted 5/12/2014 09:29 AM

I needed all the detail about everything. My FWW gave me dates on paper and the (other) details verbally.

Unfortunately since the sexual details were not written down I had to ask over and over again I could not keep things straight in my spinning head. That was a painful conversation each time. I should have had her write down all the detail.

Get as much information as you need. For me it was everything and I mean everything. But there were some things I did not think to ask about until a couple of years later and then I did not want to bring it up because our recovery was going so well. Those things really haunt me TEN YEARS later.

Do yourself a favor get it all written down now.

needfriendshere posted 5/12/2014 09:51 AM

I found that making a timeline removed my WH's A from the realm of fantasy and brought it to reality. For him, there was no longer this secret place he could go to in his mind. For me, I could stop letting my imagination - which can be my worst enemy - paint a picture of what I "thought" transpired.

You say that a lot of your H's timeline involves the sexual details. If you feel you need to know these facts, then he needs to be fess up. I think you also need to understand the full extent of any and all time and financial commitments. For me, getting ahold of all of his credit card details filled in the blanks I had in my calendar and in my mind. For me, finding out the actual logistics behind how he managed to be with her was much more enlightening than discovering the details of their sexual encounters.

I am so sorry you are going through this. I know the pain you are feeling. You have found a good place to vent and to receive advice and comfort.

Crushed15Feb13 posted 5/12/2014 10:28 AM

15 months out for me, still waiting for an accurate, complete, detailed timeline. My new IC, my WWs IC, both disagree that I need this to heal (how do they really know what I need to heal?)

The fact that I am just not getting what I am asking for might turn out to be the deal breaker for me. I am really starting to feel resentment over this.

Hugs to you, JOMD. I do think there is no good answer to your question. Pain lies in either direction, no matter what. But someone here says the only cure for the pain, is the pain.

Peace and Strength to you - I'm sorry for what you are going thru.

lifeshattered posted 5/12/2014 10:42 AM

I got my SAWH's written timeline this Saturday. He had verbally trickled out the info for 2 months. I wanted all the details so that I knew what I was being asked I accept and to see if there are any deal breakers for me. I also didn't want to deal with anymore hand grenades. This timeline was for 33 years of living a secret life so some dates and what years are only guesses. He did put the sex acts in detail as I asked and gave me details that hadn't come out of his mouth before. But what killing me is that it started slowly with a few years in between, then goes to yearly , then to multiple times a year than a three year break and back to yearly! What the crap was going on during the 3 year break? He says he has no idea. SO as his IC and SA work continues I still think there are more hand grenades in my future.

womaninflux posted 5/12/2014 11:15 AM

My SAWH completed a timeline re: his LTA but little else, so I do feel in some respects that his whole story is incomplete. But the major deception was the affair and he eventually provided a timeline on that but a lot of damage had already been done because I learned a lot on my own or through various channels. By the time he provided a timeline complete with dates (which were more or less "on or about" vs specific) and amount of money spent on travel and gifts, there wasn't much I did not know.

Trickle truth - the process of finding out little things at a time vs. getting it all out at once - is damaging to everyone involved. I can't tell you how many times my husband would say "you know everything now" and then I would find out something, like who really was on a particular trip he took with his "guy friends." It just put R back to square one. And even now, 5 months after the timeline was produced and read in a therapists office in front of his IC and our MC, I still have a lot of bad memories and mistrust about the whole process. Many therapists will say that depending on how long the infidelities occurred it can be very difficult for the WS to recall everything IMMEDIATELY and with accuracy. And as in the case of my WH, it took him almost 9 months to wake up and be honest.

veronique12 posted 5/12/2014 12:40 PM

I remember posting just about the same thing on SI a few months ago. The pit of your stomach, nauseating feeling of waiting for the black and white, on-paper confession. The details that I wanted were dates/times, places, and the excuses he gave me for going out to meet AP. I also wanted to know whether they had any physical encounters at these times.

The timeline was pretty much accurate, save for one major detail, which was sort of glossed over but came out a week later. Reading the timeline was devastating, but like almost everyone else who's posted here, I found it absolutely necessary for healing. Sort of like cleaning out an infected wound with peroxide. Painful but necessary.

This is a really tough spot on the road to R, but you're on the path and the fact that your H is being open to completing a timeline is a good sign. The timeline may bring up more questions and the answers can be extremely hurtful. I hope that your WS knows that he will hurt you less if he is completely honest, no matter how horrible he thinks the details are. He has an opportunity now to demonstrate to you that he's willing to put his self-protection aside in order to help you heal.

[This message edited by veronique12 at 12:42 PM, May 12th (Monday)]

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