We are building something new. One thing my H has done to help me heal, is he has committed to writing me new love letters. He writes me one every morning before he goes to work, and he has done this for almost a year now. He writes about what he is thinking, what he is learning, how he feels about me, words of encouragement - it helps us both.
Words of affirmation have always been important to me, and I have always been sentimental. This is one of the ways my H is working towards helping me heal.
It is so incredibly painful for a BS to read these type of things after knowing their "soulmate" betrayed them in the worst way.
I cant read them anymore. They are empty words that hurt so bad. I cant even look at old pictures anymore.
Please be there for your BS.
You have to let her do what she needs to do, understand why she is doing this and be as gently supportive as you can.
When you feel she is ready, perhaps you can do what plainpain suggests and write her a love letter to represent how you feel about her now.
But I can't help but wonder, of the relationships that survive -- 10, 20 years from now. Won't those letters have an altogether different meaning then? Won't they be seen as the beginning of a long, real relationship, one with ups and downs? The "better and the worse?" Because that was the past. . .it wasn't a lie. If you throw away all the good stuff because bad things eventually happened, isn't that shooting yourself in the foot and rewriting the story pretending you know the ending, and that the ending is bad?
It just makes me sad. I understand the impulse, but it makes me sad nonetheless. You know, infidelity can be just a bad chapter in a largely good marriage. It can be the worst thing that we survive, together.
[This message edited by bionicgal at 1:29 PM, May 21st (Wednesday)]
When I saw those reminders, it made me think of how innocent and naive I was. In my head, I knew that if I could go back to those moments, with the information I now have, I'd never have formed a life with the man who hurt me. In a way, destroying those items helped me to move forward with the new life I was having to accept.
I never regretted destroying anything. I learned to leave those things in the past. As sad as it was, it was therapeutic. When people say adultery is like a death, it really is. And it's been my experience that just like we mourn the loss of a loved one....those of us who have been betrayed have to mourn the loss of our past, the future we thought we had planned, and the person we thought we were partners in life with. It's a HUGE painful loss, and one I'm so very sorry your BW is having to go though.
It sounds like you see her pain, and you are also experiencing your own share of it. Hang in there. Clearly your marriage isn't meaningless to her. Her sobbing over those letters, says so much. Maybe what she's saying by throwing away those letters is that she can't base her marriage and the love you have for her, by what was written on those papers anymore. The marriage means something to her, it's those words and memories that are useless now. Now, it's up to you to give her what's needed for her to find reason to hold on to new memories...or even give them a chance.
Grieving is hard.
I threw out all of my letters. They were constant reminders that I was a fool, and he was a liar. He kept what I had given him, and it hurt him when I threw mine out. Odd, given that his actions screamed he didn't care. Mine only screamed I didn't believe him.
Anyway, the marriage is now very different for you and your BW. For you, it's something you want, and are fighting for. You remember all the good things about your wife, and why you love her. She remembers all the things she believed that were lies, or now seem like lies. To you, she is your faithful wife that you want to see happy. To her, you are the man that gutted her. I'm sorry - I'm not trying to insult you. I hope you'll see where I'm going in a minute.
I'm not saying this to hurt you, at all, and please, forgive me if I have. I'm hoping you'll see a bit of why those letters hurt her to see. Her DDay was very recent - VERY. She's still trying to figure out which way is up. She's still putting the whole puzzle together in her head. Seeing those letters-well, I've been there. As you can see, lots of us have. It's hard. It's harder than I can describe. What once was a source of great happiness is now a reminder of hell.
As I said - lots of us have been there. Almost all of us have reconciled. You can get through this. As others have said, just be there for her.
[This message edited by painfulpast at 5:02 PM, May 21st (Wednesday)]