It's very hard to understand, but they are in such a fantasy-land that real practical matters... like divorce and the logistics of it all... don't seem to really enter their heads. It's all about the thrill, the high. Actually sitting down and figuring things out would be too "real", it would destroy the illusion. Well that's how it seemed to be for my husband.
[This message edited by ItsaClimb at 12:51 AM, May 17th (Saturday)]
I think that what I find so hard, how could I have mean so little?
BS (me) 40
OW - a friend of WH for 5 years
4 month EA which turned into a 5 month PA
Us together 20 years, married 17 and 6 kids
I always thought I was enough but obviously not!
While you're home raising the kids, cooking the food, doing the laundry, cleaning the house, keeping the hearth and home in order, working a full time job and contributing to the household and everything else a woman has to do on a daily basis, he's out acting like an asshat in fantasyland for an hour or two. But he still needs that security of home base to come back to - and you provide that. They may be off in their temporary little oasis with their OW, but YOU provide the core and center of their lives, not the OW. She's more of an escape for them than anything else.
Sure, it's real easy to be 'in love' within the bubble of the perfect little affair because it's pretty easy to both be on your best behavior when it's only for an hour or two a couple times a week. I've read plenty of OW support boards in the past and a lot of them have HOURS to prepare for their MM's visit and they make the most of it. And a lot of them claim that they want to provide the 'escape' the poor deprived guy so desperately needs, so they jump around like trained seals trying to be the very best they can be. Real easy when you don't share kids, bills, everyday stresses, and on and on and on. Yeah, that's cakewalk for most people.
Of course your husband 'never felt that way before.' Maybe if you only saw him once or twice a week for a whopping 2 hours and had all week to prepare for his visit, he'd think you were some kind of goddess too.
You were his W, his partner, and faithful. You and family were put in a box as was most of what was going on. Only one box open at a time. That is the compartmentalization we read about here.
So yes in my case it was the man, my WS, who was the cake eater. And I agree he liked his home and his bills being taken care of and the kids, he liked to look good that way. But he likes to get attention, he craves validation from others. Thats the slippery slope.
But it can happen to either a man or a woman. We see it here all the time. But I get what you are saying.
I send hugs to all those who are in the situation of trying to make sense of how their WS could be deeply 'in love' with AP and not feel like the marriage is over. I think it is a worse situation than mine, and so I'm grateful not to be in that boat; and yet I'm also struggling to understand my WH's situation and I find myself asking that same exact question.
He had flirting relationships that he claims were not based on sex (although one did get physical to the point of hugs/kisses) and also not about emotional intimacy. They were just shallow, flirty, 'fun' which he successfully minimised and excused in his head as 'not cheating' while he continued to be a loving, committed husband and father at home.
I struggle to reconcile how a man who believes in God (and in morality) and believes in respect towards women can simultaneously treat both OW and BS (me) with so little respect. What was I to him during the affair? If he felt loyal to me during this time, how could he behave that way? Is that what compartmentalisation achieves? How could he be sending messages to OW saying "I love you" while not meaning it, and then saying "I love you" to me and meaning it? How can he ever be believed again?
He dropped OW immediately once caught, but what I can't get is, if she meant so little to him and it really was just shallow nonsense, why did he continue the relationship for so many months? That required him making choices to conceal and continue the relationship. How was it that shallow flirting was so important to him and managed to trump his inner conscience? Is that ego kibbles? It sickens me that he could treat her that way (making her feel special when she wasn't special to him), and treat me that way.
Sometimes I wonder if I'm in denial, or if I'm being sucked in by minimising lies, and yet his behaviour and reactions seem to confirm that these OW meant nothing to him. He just used them to flirt with.
I guess infidelity is just so hard for us BS to make sense of no matter the exact cause or situation.
[This message edited by Branca at 10:10 AM, May 17th (Saturday)]
DD #1 26 August 2013 - EA on FB and phone with a former flame OW#2 for about 8 months
DD #2 30 April 2014 - EA/PA for 10 months in 2011 with OW#1
Hoping for R
I, like many of you, don't see how I will ever be able to wrap my head around how my WH could speak so lowly of those who cheat, who caught his mother in an A, was a church-attending father of 3 with a baby on the way, YET chose to cheat with none other than his Boss' WIFE, who was a whore, a swinger, and an absentee mother to her 2 very young children.
It just dumbfounds me. FOOs aside, it begs the question, "how could you be THAT asshole prince charming?"
*Winners never cheat and cheaters never win*
A lot of men will probably not like this, but I think that most men involved in affairs don't leave their wives because they need a mommy to come home to, to do everything for them but wipe their butts. I also think that's why more divorces are initiated by women - women already KNOW they have what it takes to run a household and keep things in order with or without a man, but most men fear being alone and having to actually take care of themselves and be responsible for running their own household.
I just don't buy this -- not at all. Sorry. I mean, it isn't the 1950's and many men cheat on women who don't "do everything but wipe their butts." I mean, really? Sorry, but it just doesn't ring true for me, and is very victimy. It also assumes that men and women cheat differently. I just don't buy it. If you have a man that thinks that way, then you have more problems than just adultery.
But yes, it is an escape -- and "deeply in love" is BS. It is infatuation, and while it feels like champagne, is actually MD 20/20.
A lot of men will probably not like this, but I think that most men involved in affairs don't leave their wives because they need a mommy to come home to, to do everything for them but wipe their butts.
begin rant - I disagree and am a man and my wife betrayed me - end of rant
during her PA, absolutely did she compartamentalize our relationship and her fantasy life. Once I discovered and confronted her, she took some things underground and trickle truthed me to death. I stood by her not knowing that she was still fence sitting and cake-eating. After several years of R and setbacks, it now seems that I was the only one doing R and she has sinse lost focus on our marriage. I asked for a divorce as the marriage died years ago but I held on. in fact I still have hope that she'll snap out of it. but I'm not sure if I want to spend the rest of this life waiting for her to realize my worth. The thought of her not wanting to grow with me is a bitter pill to swallow.
Ok maybe this is the end of the rant
Two children, innocent victims (14 & 15)
When I look back, we both hurt each other in so many ways and our lack of honesty and maturity coupled with poor communication led us to where we are today
Then I start looking at living with someone who doesn't think "right". Who is capable of hurting the people closest to him. And he is changing. Doesn't want to be that person anymore. But he was..............OY!