I think the key is to stop allowing yourself to wonder about this. In the end it doesn't matter whether he fell for you hard, used you, told you what he really believed or knew he was lying to you. It needs to be enough to know that he was dishonest and that anything you thought you were getting out of the relationship was based on false pretenses.
I know that may not help much, but it is not that different to what I, as a BW, had to do in terms of giving up the headspace my former friend was taking. It doesn't matter why she did what she did. She is not the person I am going to rely on to contribute to my healing, so wasting too much time on what her thought processes were was not helping me. Your AP can do nothing to help you heal, and analyzing why he participated in the A is not going to be of help. Only knowing why you did can contribute to your healing.
Here is my favorite, handy dandy chart:
Thing is, it's not real. So it doesn't matter, it's all lies.
All of us here have stepped out on our families when we should have been at home. We have all given up time with our spouses, kids, parents, siblings and friends to be with the AP. We have all made the AP a priority over those who really matter. It isn't tit for tat, it isn't a competition between you and your AP over who betrayed their family more. You aren't a 'better' wayward than him. You are exactly the same, both broken, both messed up.
What he did to his family during the A is irrelevant. Focus on your own role. You're doing well, keep at it!
Chin up. Unwavering. Fight. I can do this.
After I came out of the fog and begin to see the disgusting gravity of what I participated in...it makes me sick. My blinders came off and I could see AP for who he really was. Then I realized we used each other. We were both broken lying cheaters. I'm trying not to concentrate too much on AP bc he is nonexistent to us now. I am focusing on helping my BH heal. I'm thanking my lucky stars for being given the gift of R. I am working on my issues in IC and trying to be the best wife I can be in MC. We seem to have much in common Dana. I'm curious as to what additional advice people have to share. I know I can use it too.
Ok, so what i want to know is why he would tell me things such as "I've never felt this way with anyone but you."
He told you these things because it was exactly what he needed to say to get the response he wanted from you. It's a game of stroking egos and feeding mutual dysfunction. It's not about love or admiration. There is nothing unique about the situation at all.
If you want them to quit stabbing you in the back, then you need to quit handing them the knife.
This is sort of in response to your other thread, but it is common to say you've had a crush on/fantasized about the person a long time, that you feel a special connection (soul mates, twin flames, etc.), that the spouse doesn't get you like the AP does. Also common to wring hands and say, "we aren't bad people, so this can't be wrong," and things to that effect. Or, we love our spouses, and why would we do something so awful if it wasn't true love?
My H's AP said she'd never felt so accepted and loved. . . not by her parents or her husband. This one gets me -- we knew them socially for a long time, but my H didn't know jack squat about her. We still laugh at how blankly he looked at me when I asked him if she was smart. He had no idea! When I asked him what he liked so much about her that was worth having an affair for, he said, "I thought she was like you." Sigh. This makes him sound dumb, but seriously, my husband is normally no dummy.
Quite frankly, I have heard more of her bull puckey than my husband's -- he did feel very desired by her, which was his issue at the time. (MLC, anyone?) He did tell her his loyalty had shifted to her -- again, another
The more you think of the way you felt in the affair as the high, and less the AP, the happier you will feel - I promise. There is a part of you that knows he is a lying, cheating schmuck. Not that you need to get stuck there, but Prince Charming by definition doesn't try to bag a married woman. It is a broken person who does that - I am sorry. You deserve better for yourself, and your family deserves better as well.
Hang in there dana.
[This message edited by bionicgal at 2:06 PM, June 24th (Tuesday)]
There is a part of you that knows he is a lying, cheating schmuck. Not that you need to get stuck there, but Prince Charming by definition doesn't try to bag a married woman. It is a broken person who does that - I am sorry. You deserve better for yourself, and your family deserves better as well.
^^^^ This! It's so important that we all remember that. The converse is also true, I'm no princess charming. I am working to become the person I used to hold myself out as being. But in the meantime I must come to terms with the fact that I am a liar, cheater, marriage wrecking OW. But there it is. I'm entitled, and have no self love.
The As were one symptom of my brokenness. The attraction was the positive reflection of me. But it was all nonsense. When I look backwards what I see is exactly that, a reflection. But it's a reflection of all the bad stuff about me, and non of the good stuff. I don't miss being that person. I hate that person. It's why I'm here working my a** off to be a better, healthier person.
Based on that, they decided they were soul-mates, destined to be together. They completed each other, loved so much, and liked the same wines. Real soul reaching stuff. They say whatever it takes to get what they want for themselves. The game plays out until one or the other stops the train and gets off, usually without looking back. These things almost never end with two mature people walking away for the greater good.
Freedom's just another word for nothin' left to lose
The sooner you commit and stick with NC in every sense of the word (physical and mental NC), the better the chance you have at recovery. And I'm not even talking about reconciliation. I'm talking about being a better, authentic person.
It's crazy. Even as I type this, I wish I could heed my own advice.
You have a PM.
My tolerance for stupid shit is getting less and less.
The attraction was the positive reflection of me. But it was all nonsense. When I look backwards what I see is exactly that, a reflection. But it's a reflection of all the bad stuff about me, and non of the good stuff. I don't miss being that person. I hate that person. It's why I'm here working my a** off to be a better, healthier person.
Powerful, powerful stuff. Jean Houston talks about sacred wounds, which are are wounds that open up a doorway to a higher way of being and interacting, if you let them. It is so amazing seeing the growth that goes on from waywards and BS alike on this site.
You have a question in your mind and you posted about it. That's a good thing. My point to you would be why do you want/need the answer to that question.
Sometimes in life the answer isn't the answer to the question itself but what motivates the question to begin with.
Also common to wring hands and say, "we aren't bad people, so this can't be wrong," and things to that effect. Or, we love our spouses, and why would we do something so awful if it wasn't true love?
He was lying to himself, trying to justify his involvement.
For me, it was a lot of the second (but enough of the first, if I'm being honest). Saying a lot of the things, and thinking I was feeling the feelings, that made it certain that there was something special. It was a sort of self-fulfilling prophesy. I wanted there to be a special link, so I said we had a special link. If you want the A to be some special, deep, romantic encounter, you say and do those special, deep and romantic things. At some point, I was so fooled, so compartmentalized, that I was certain it was true. It wasn't. It's just costume jewelery. We were just creating the fantasy.