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Antiversary advice

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AML04 posted 5/22/2014 06:42 AM

Hi All, I'm hoping some of you can help me with what to expect. Last year we went away with friends for Memorial Day wknd and had dday on that Sat. We're going back this year (without DS) and I'm very worried.

A little back story about dday. I had been feeling like something wasn't right with WH for quite a while but he wouldn't talk to me about it. He had a "friend" at work he had been talking/texting with a lot lately so I thought maybe he was talking to her about it. I decided to check his phone when he went to sleep that night.

It was fairly obvious they were having an EA and from what I had read it had been PA at least once. It took everything I had not to take DS and leave right then. Instead, I stayed up all night, sick to my stomach. I told one of my friends in the morning and she convinced me to stay and talk to WH. I then confronted WH with it when he got up. It was hard but we stayed that night and went home the next day. I didn't want any details at that point. He told me it was over and he didn't want to be with anyone but me, apologized profusely, cried, and comforted me.

FF to now...for the most part R is going well. In fact, if he hadn't had an A, I probably wouldn't have any complaints because I wouldn't know what was missing. Unfortunately I feel our real healing has stalled because neither of us knows what we should be doing.

So after that LONG set up, my question is, is there anything we can do so this wknd isn't just a big, huge trigger fest?? We're going to be with friends but I'm still very worried about it. Thankfully we should be coming home Sunday instead of Monday so it might give us time to talk after we get home.

Any suggestions?

OakStreet posted 5/22/2014 06:56 AM


I don't have any specific advice about the "trigger fest" (love the term), but perhaps someone will come along that does.

Unfortunately I feel our real healing has stalled because neither of us knows what we should be doing.

Regarding this, perhaps some reading from The Healing Library or seeing a MC?

Good luck and have the best weekend you can!

bionicgal posted 5/22/2014 07:04 AM

Hey AML,
First of all, I bet the anticipation of the day will be worse than the actual day. It is good that you are asking for help. Our MC has encouraged us to plan these things together. . . How can you guys decide to mark or not mark the day? Also, talk about what happens when/if you trigger.

What's going on with the standstill, you think? Are you in MC?

[This message edited by bionicgal at 7:05 AM, May 22nd (Thursday)]

AML04 posted 5/22/2014 07:25 AM

Thank you!! I actually meant to post this in recon (oops). Is there anyway to have it moved?

We are both in IC and MC. MC is working to help us communicate better. Last night's session opened our eyes to some of the issues that are stalling us. When WH is confronted with something that is hard/painful, he shuts down. It's almost like he goes blank. MC pointed out how that leaves me helpless and powerless because there isn't anything I can argue against/help him with. We're hoping with more IC for him he will be able to get in touch with his thoughts/feelings more so we can actually work on it together.

WH's "ability" to close off those things that are painful is what I'm worried about for this wknd. Sometimes he truly doesn't even notice when I am hurting. It's like he has blinders on. Something silly like talking about skiing and saying I could be a snow-bunny when bunny was her nickname for herself. I believe he genuinely wants to change, I'm not sure he has the will to do it yet and it's getting frustrating. I'm trying to be patient but it's very hard sometimes.

[This message edited by AML04 at 8:13 AM, May 22nd (Thursday)]

AML04 posted 5/22/2014 10:11 AM

Is there anyway to get this moved to recon?

Deeply Scared posted 5/22/2014 15:13 PM

I'm moving it to Recon for you

AML04 posted 5/22/2014 15:22 PM

Thank you so much DS!!! Having a rough day. That lump in my throat and pit in my stomach feeling is back. Haven't had that for a while.

LA44 posted 5/22/2014 17:52 PM

Hey AML, two things going on here.

1) Your anxiety re: Anti and 2) Your stalled R from H shutting down and you feeling helpless.

Re: 1) I agree with Bionic in that the lead up is usually worse then the actual day for many people. I can't even tell you what mine was like (it is also my H's bday). I find that when you can expect a trigger - they are easier to manage. It's the unexpected ones that are a really tough. They are so quickly overwhelming and can cause a lot of fall-out. Back to this in a moment.

For the Anti...I would suggest that on this venture you do ONE new thing together as a couple. Something that requires some effort, teamwork and that is fun. Make a new memory is what I am saying. Also, when you are conscience of a particular day or an unexpected trigger, tell yourself that, "I am conscience of this moment and I don't have to let it win." I am not saying bury your feelings. Feel them, take a breath, let them go.

As for your H shutting down. The good thing here is that you can see when he is going to that place, so you are actually not as helpless as you think. You can say, "I can see you are shutting down. Would you like some time or do you want to talk now?"

Also, ASK him for what you need. "That bunny comment bothered me bc....I need a hug."

Your H does need to work on this in IC. Be aware that this is his issue. I know it affects you but while he is working on it that is a good thing to focus on - he is working on it and it will get better. This kind of stuff didn't happen overnight and it won't resolve itself in a few months.

I hope this is helpful. Rooting for you!

AML04 posted 5/22/2014 19:45 PM

It is very helpful LA because it gives me focus. I feel like I am floundering!! It helps especially getting advice from women who I admire so much for the strength you've shown in your journeys.

LA44 posted 5/22/2014 19:53 PM

We all believe we are floundering (Running to Stand Still- a U2 song) - at many points on this journey, AML. I used to resent it but then I started recognizing the growth(in both me and H) and I really don't believe it would have just come on its own.

I just wrote a friend that something extraordinary can come from a terrible place.

((AML)) Keep us posted on the wknd or afterwards. Hope it goes well for you.

hopefull77 posted 5/22/2014 20:09 PM

We went away to one of our favotite places and had such a great time...I was so thankful it was 'now and not then'
I agree with LA44 it's the triggers that come out of nowhere that can leave me exhausted for days....
Our 37th anniversary is next week...I am not sure what we will do but I do KNOW this he is here 100% ...unlike year 34 and 35....
I always felt that dday was the day I got my marriage back
Bottom line make that date count

titanfour posted 5/22/2014 20:28 PM

I certainly have issues on dday, I am sure most would agree, so totally normal. Mine happens to be our anniversary, so very problematic.

We were at home then mostly because we were broke, so now I really prefer we always go somewhere. Took me years to figure that was a connection (no SI back then). Not as problematic anymore, but still prefer going away somewhere NEW. FWIW.

I think going back to the same place will have you triggering absolutely. However, being prepared that it will happen is beneficial. Make sure WH understands this will happen and will comfort you if it does. That he should in fact expect it as natural.

No matter what, don't feel guilty about it. It could be a great opportunity talk about things.

steadfast1973 posted 5/22/2014 20:44 PM

Memorial day is my antiversary, too. (The actual date was 5/25, but it was memorial day, so the holiday is more the triggerfest, than the actual date...) (((AML04)))

What I've done every year, is try to focus on NOW...

AML04 posted 5/22/2014 21:05 PM

Thank you all so much. This gives me something to hold on to. My actual dday is 5/26 so we'll be home on that day. Maybe we'll take DS somewhere fun. So hard to trigger with his beautiful face smiling at me.

AML04 posted 5/26/2014 08:28 AM

Today is 1 year. One year ago today I confronted WH with what I found on his phone.

The couple days away went fine. I had a couple moments, nothing crazy. We came home yesterday and we're spending this morning just lazing around watching tv with DS.

I'm not sure how I feel today, just kind of numb. I still get incredibly angry/upset but it's a lot less often. I definitely still think about it everyday.

I feel I've been very patient with WH. He's found a new IC and I'm hopeful they can get to the bottom of his issues. I keep telling myself to hold on, he's done so much right and I love him so much. I internalize a lot of my thoughts bc his lack of reaction when I share can be frustrating.

Sorry for rambling, I needed to get something out but my thoughts are a bit of a mess right now.

BrokenheartedUK posted 5/26/2014 10:03 AM

Hugs. It's a tough day. No two ways about it. Be kind to yourself and know we are here for you.

AML04 posted 5/26/2014 11:11 AM

Thank you BHUK! And I love your tag line

Morhurt posted 5/26/2014 12:33 PM

Great thread, thank you for sharing AML.

My first anti is coming up in 8 days and I'm anxious about it. I actually don't even remember the actual date, but it was a Tuesday and my older kids left for camp and it was early June. This year they're also leaving on a Tuesday in early June so that's the anti day to me.

I'm glad to hear your weekend went well, I hope today has more healing moments than hurting moments for you.

My H has to work on ours and I can't decide how to handle the day. We've had some pre-dday days already (TT I guess, so this is the avalanche of truth dday) and we did well, but I'm a lot more apprehensive about this one. I feel fragile and anxious during this lead up time. I know my recommendation to others would be to talk... so I guess I'll bring it up. :(

AML04 posted 5/26/2014 13:04 PM

(((Morhurt))) I haven't brought it up yet today. Not sure what to say. He's been sweet so I know he knows I'm thinking about it. Now that's it's here, it's kind of anti-climactic (Ba dum bum.)

I'm trying to reflect on how far we've come but we're not as far as I thought we'd be, KWIM? I very rarely feel the raw emotions or get the physical pains (chest tightening, stomach clenching) but I keep thinking, now what? The only thing I can do is keep on working on it.

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