Well, if feeling our emotions, having empathy for our betrayed partners and trying to do the work isn't 'manning up', I'd like to know what it is we are supposed to be doing here. (BTW, that's horribly sexist. There are plenty of female Waywards here having exactly the same experience, but that's another conversation.)
Seriously, what are the legitimate alternatives to doing the work and feeling pain and remorse? Are we supposed to just remorselessly move on with our lives and APs and tell our spouses to go to hell?
Are we supposed to kill ourselves?
Are we supposed to become hermits?
With this attitude, what are we doing to teach people to live the rest of their lives after infidelity?
This reminds me of a recent story on NPR that my wife shared with me. It's about men sentenced to life in prison back when it was still possible to earn parole and what it's like to develop empathy for the people you hurt. I dare you to listen to this and still tell me that truly remorseful Waywards get off scott-free.
The two segments are 25 minutes in total, but it's worth it if you want to know what healing and empathy cost after you have done something terrible.
Betrayed spouses, if you want your Waywards to suffer, help them learn empathy for what they put you and everyone else in their lives through.
Waywards, if you want to be better people, feel and understand what you did to all of your victims. Learn from it and do something with it.
I get what you're saying. It's a whole twisted up mess. Yay we get it. Yay we are better people. Yay QS feels safe. Now. Yay we are having beautifully. Yay I am not selfish. Yay for love and intimacy and dates and deep talks. But I still...
And even in the best moments, there are still shadows. If QS sees me in a certain color, he is reminded I sent AP pics. If we visit a certain store, there are memories. A trigger can hit him out of the blue.
Did he see me as redeemable? By some miracle yes. For others, my 4 offenses would be too much to work thru. My broken would be too tough to deal with. QS sees things happen here he couldn't handle. (In theory of course. You never really know till you experience it yourself)
Don't let narrow mindedness blur your vision. Your BS saw something in you worth fighting for. QS saw something in he he couldn't live without. Your BS expresses her needs and wants which I'm sure vary from what QS asked me for. That is what is so cool about R. Every person's path is so unique and individual. It's the same, yet so different.
Hug your BS tighter today. She gave you R. And it's more than some people get.
At the end of the day, it's you and your BS. And her opinion is all that matters.
Sorry if this is sorta off track. Just what I felt when I saw your post.
"Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway." - J. Wayne
In the original post a BS mocked the idea of every Wayward that woke up and wanted to save their marriage; mocked the idea that Waywards are hurt by their choices and feel pain about our infidelity and the damage we have done to our spouses. We were told to "man up bois" and that running back to our "mommies" was humorous.
fwiw, in a rant AP sent to my husband after dday, after he ended the affair and confessed, it stated something to the effect of -- you have run to mommy and confessed in an act of self sabotage.
It also made reference that because he wanted to work on his marriage and wasn't contacting her that he was avoiding consequences and not having to face hurting someone. NoÖ.reallyÖ..I'm serious it said that.
I suspect there are lots of X-AP's who think/tell themselves WS's who wants to work on their marriage are weak and running home to mommy. Because if AP's had to look at it another way and dropped their own denial, they would have to look at themselves too. Where's the fun in that?
Also I think it shows that the AP feels the WS's were/are easy to control and manipulate. Not someone capable of making up their own decisions. AP's are pissed that the wife now, in their minds, has all the control that they once thought they had. When they believe that, it really shows how little regard and what a puppet they always thought the WS was.
If you use that reasoning, that WS's only get out of affairs because the BS makes them do it by controlling the outcome in some way. Then it stands to reason that WS's only got into an affair because the AP made them, without any free will of their own.
In other words, it's basically just crap and you must consider the source.
Each relationship is unique, even though the 'script' tends to be similar. If you can truly become a better person, whether or not you R, you will have benefited. I posted on 'felix culpa' in New Beginnings--it's the concept that bad experiences can lead to unexpected blessings. Allow yourself to be blessed.
Me: FBS (no longer betrayed nor a spouse)-62
D-day: 2007 (two years before finding SI)
S: 6/2010; D: 3/2011
Chin up. Unwavering. Fight. I can do this.
FWIW, I was riled up about this on behalf of all of us. There are folks here who are working extremely hard to own what they did by being unfaithful. There are Betrayed spouses that are working very hard everyday to offer forgiveness and a path to reconciliation.
A lot of us are repenting our sins and doing the best we can. If the poster's comments were true, then there is no point to this forum or any Wayward doing any work at all. I just couldn't accept it quietly. It wouldn't be right for any of us, Wayward and Betrayed alike.
I read the original post and another thread where that person posted and it just seems that he or she is experiencing a lot of pain and anger. I don't know what their story is, but I think the SI staff are on it.
I just listened to both of the NPR segments and I can agree that there is a high cost for everyone involved in the aftermath of a crime. The victim, the victim's family, the perpetrator, and the perpetrator's family. It is similar in the aftermath of unfaithfulness.
As a WH, I am just beginning to live with the consequences of my behavior and actions. I have barely scraped the surface of my problems and looking back on what I have done and the road that I have to go down, it is easier to say forget about it and "start over." Except...it's not.
My actions have caused a tremendous amount of pain and suffering to my BW, but now because I have selfishly brought another soul into this world without addressing my shit, I have to live with that choice - regardless if I am able to recover and have some type of relationship, as a married couple, divorced co-parents, or, as a SA who gives up on recovery and goes full force into the addiction.
It was painful to hurt and betray BW and continue with my bullshit, but if I don't get it together, I will do to my son the one thing that I said that I would never do. I will abandon him. I will hurt him. I will cause him to doubt a lot of things. He will ask, "Why didn't dad love me enough to..."
I don't know if I will get it right, but I know that I have to try. My BW deserves to be healed, my DS deserves everything.
I asked myself many times today why it bothered me so much. One as a BS (other poster said she was a bs and ex ow)she has first hand knowledge of the devastation is causes.
The other thing that bothered me was the fact that she called us (BS's) "their mommies"--No I'm not his mommy, I am his partner. I am my children's mother.
My wh knows where the door is and so do I-no permission needed to walk away.
I really root for all the WS that are doing the work. My Wh is doing the work and sometimes it may be slow going, but he is doing it.
My own opinion was that I took it as a bitter e-ow and not a BS. I find nothing funny about any of this.
I apologize if I offended anyone. That was not my intentions.
So I will just mosey on back out of here-and not jump the gun with my word vomit
I'm further out and in a very good place now. Because I've had to deal with a bunny boiler AP to the extent that I have, I laugh at the ridiculousness of the thought processes involved. I had to, because as NGU stated, killing myself or becoming a hermit wasn't a good option. I've seen that script before, many times. Understanding the source and the motivations behind it helped me get to the point of indifference.
I remember a time when statements like that would have triggered me and got me really upset. They don't now, and I think that means I've healed. Sometimes I even forget what it's like to be back in that awful triggery place. There are still things that bother me, but one person's outrageous claims on infidelity don't.
I do remember, at those times in the past, it was harder to keep my eye on what is important -- my healing and my spouse's healing. And to conserve energy for the stuff that really matters because there is a long, painful, exhausting road ahead.
I like this quote:
Iím too old to know that Iím not gonna change this world, but Iím definitely there to help the neighbourhood. -- Rick Danko
On SI we can help those who need it, but really only those who want it or who are ready for it. And I know when someone says outrageous things they will be dealt with swiftly by the mods. They keep this place safe.
Peace to everyone who has to wake up another day and deal with this shit, no matter what side of the fence they are on.
ETA: Removed personal info
[This message edited by sunnyrain at 4:40 PM, June 24th (Tuesday)]
We all tell ourselves what we need to in order to sleep at night. That OW is still stuck. She feels bad and wants others to feel bad too. I hope she finds her way out of that hole.
Isn't it nice that our R is not dictated by anyone other than our spouse?
Many times over the years I have read something that pissed me off and thought, "Well, luckily, I don't answer to you." The post in question is just another one of those.
Divorced from (2010) and remarried to (2014) XBH
1 1/2-year-old daughter and another baby girl on the way