Hey phoenixrises, I am sorry you are here, but welcome.
I distinctly remember my H telling me was that the only time he called AP was to tell her NC...AND to say that I might expose the A to her supervisor. I told him that NC means, NC and that it was time for him to start protecting ME. Not her. Me! This seemed to shake him out of some dream-like state he was in.
Since Feb., have you two been in IC or read books like, Not Just Friends and After the Affair? I highly recommend that BOTH you and your H pick them up before you start going over your expectations.
After the Affair speaks about High Cost Behaviours (HCB). A HCB for you would be, NC with the AP. Another HCB would be, Tell me every time AP contacts you whether it is work or personal.
Note: Many WS mess this up whether its an outright call, note or whether they are confronted in a hallway, on the street, in a store.
but in our last few conversations these past few weeks about OW he continues to defend her. He says that he played a father figure/protector role to her and made her all these false promises and feels badly about it
And what does he say about breaking the vow of marriage to you?! Does he feel badly about that? It never cease to amaze me the dumb-ass things they say!
Let him know that under NO circumstances do you want to hear how badly he feels about hurting her and that defending her to you is unacceptable. That too would be a HCB.
We had taken a long break on talking about the A because I'm trying to move forward and he's been great and helping me do so
Sorry. But (and I say this gently) if he is defending the AP then I don't think he's been great at helping you move forward.
As Rebreather said, he needs IC to straighten him out.
If he is remorseful you will know it. You will see it. You will feel it. It will be consistent. But right now, he is not remorseful. This is still all about him.
I asked many questions in the first year and then started clamming up. We are 19 months in and I realize I cannot clam up. I need to express my needs and talk to him about his feelings and mine. This is a very long and painful process but I believe will be worth it.
Keep reading. Keep posting. And keep talking about the A with him. Write your questions down. Ask him what you need to know. The questions might go on for months. Tell him this. The more answers you get - and you want honest answers no matter how painful - the more you two can find your way to a relationship that is authentic.