Sounds dramatic when I typed it out for my user. It's not meant to be. It's a simple statement. A matter of fact.
My first and maybe only post. I've been skulking around this website since I found it this past Nov. In a way I've become obsessed with with this site. Reading other's peoples stories and searching for answers. Some of which I already know others I know I will never have. My story is not like most of the stories on here. My wife has never cheated and I have never cheated. At this point in time my relationship with my wife is probably the best it's ever been. If there ever was a moment of infidelity between us (on either part) , I know I would not be able to live through it. My heart goes out to everyone here. Especially for those with children as I'm one of those. My soul goes out to them.
I'm a survivor of my mother's A(s) and her lack of remorse. The A has had such a dramatic impact on my life that even after 25 years the damage is still unbelievable. It's like watching a tragic movie that doesn't seem to be about me.
If interested from a child's view of infidelity and if you could look 25 years into their future, you might find SOME of me in them. This is not a typical story in some ways and it other ways it is. Everyone is effected by the A's differently. I'm a typical generation x guy in some ways. I have a tendency to be stubborn and a bit old fashioned in that I will never seek IC. I prefer the "old school" method of internalizing everything and no way in hell am I going to talk about my feelings. That's what I have been doing for the past 25 years until now. My wife wants me to go to IC. I showed her this web site and told her I would feel more comfortable here. I've been building up the courage for weeks now and I'm shaking while I type this out.
DDay was March of 1989. I was 16 years old and walked home from school early skipping my last class. I called a buddy who wasn't in school from the kitchen phone and was doodling on a piece of paper while talking to him. Not thinking anything of it while I was having this phone conversation, I opened up to the middle of a book I had never seen before on the table in front of me. Since I was more engaged in the conversation I was having, it took a few paragraphs to realize that I was reading my mothers diary and the content was pornographic. Really f#$%ing dirty and none of it was about my dad. It was all about the Om. Stuff no kid should ever here about.
Even now my mind races when I start to remember DDay. To quickly sum up the chain of events that transpired for me: called my grandfather to get my younger brother out of house when he got home from school, called my father at work to tell him that I needed to talk to him and that I would be home at 5:00, grabbed the diary and had a friend get me out of the house before my mom came home from where ever she was. I knew she had to leave for work by 4 and would be coming home soon to get ready.
While waiting for my friend to come pick me up, I made the mistake of reading a great deal of that diary. Probably more than half of it. I wish I hadn't but I couldn't help myself. I was about to do the hardest thing that I have ever had to do in my life. Even to this day it was the hardest thing I ever had to do. I was arming myself for the sit down I was about to have with my father. I was the one who had to tell him about mom's A.
I told him that mom was having an affair with an Om. He got really cautious and wanted to know how I could know such a thing. I told him I had read a PAGE of mom's diary. He asked me where it was (I had hid it in the garage when I got home) and he wanted me to give it to him so he could see for himself. After the sex acts that my mother had described and her thoughts to go with them I really didn't want to give it to him. But with the look he gave me I knew there was no arguing with him. I got it and handed it to him. He has a partially photographic memory and almost as fast as you can turn a page he read that book from cover to cover. To this day I'm fairly certain he could recite it back word for word if he wanted to.
Wow this next part is really hard for me to write. The look that he had on his face when he was done reading was a look I have never seen on another human being before or since. There are no words for it. Even pain seems light. That look has been burned into my brain forever and is actually the hardest part for me of this entire god forsaken mess. After what seemed like an eternity he went to the garage where he would smoke. That look.
I gave him a few minutes and then went to check on him. That look was gone and was replaced by something else completely. RAGE!! I know he didn't want me to see him and he kept asking me to leave as he stood there with my baseball bat in one hand and his car keys in the other. Even at the age of 16 I knew I couldn't leave him there like that because I knew another situation of some sort would probably go down. He kept asking me in a firm voice to leave. The voice didn't have anger or hurt in it. He was firm and as a matter of fact. After what was an eternity (maybe 20 min?), he put the bat down and put his keys on the washer machine as if silently to say he wasn't going to go anywhere. I left him there and went to my bedroom which was right above the garage. Looking back on it now, symbolically when I left him there, I left whatever used to be my dad there as well. I would never see the same man again that was there prior to my dropping a nuke.
My brother came home and my dad asked him to go to his room while he continued to wait in the garage for my mom. My grandfather (my mother's father) who was dropping him off wanted to know what was going on. My dad politely and firmly in so many words asked him to leave as it was a family matter. He left. I loved and still love my grandfather to this day. He was one of the most kindest, gentlest people I have ever known. How my mother came from him I do not know.
My mom came home from work and the confrontation began. My dad was still sitting in the garage smoking waiting for her with the garage door up. This is March and in a very cold part of the country so he must have been freezing after hours out there. As soon as my mom got out of her car and walked towards the garage my dad started screaming expletives so loud that I couldn't make them out. He slammed the garage door down so hard that it bounced all the way back up and open and that door was heavy. My mom almost immediately began to wail and ran into the house for cover. I could hear her wailing in the kitchen. I went across the hall into my brothers room (just turned 13 years old) and explained to him not to worry in so many words. That mom and dad are going to have a lot of issues to work through. I remember him being very worried and wanting to know what was going on but I didn't give him any of the details. Ever. Zero. I had to explain that we were going to have to lie low and ride out whatever storm was to come.
After what I remember to be about an hour of my mother wailing in the kitchen my dad came in. No yelling. I could hear my mother calm down to a sobbing level but I could not make out what they were saying. As I was almost in bed, my mother came up into my room and the first thing out of her mouth is why I didn't come to her first? I said nothing. The next question was how much of it did I read? I said about 1 page. I lied to cover up that I should have known not to read my mothers diary. Then she stated that she was sorry and asked if I could forgive her. To which I said "sure". Went to bed and didn't sleep a wink
The conversation with my dad that day and the even smaller one in my bedroom with my mother was the most I had ever talked to them about the A. After that conversation with my mother I checked out. I didn't want to overstep my bounds with whatever my parents were working through and quite frankly I wanted to stick my head in the sand. Seeing that look on my father's face, the gory details of her affair that I had read, and the fact that my mother seemed angry with me that I didn't come to her when I found out stuck with me. She lost me as a son that day. I never looked at her the same again. Especially as a parent. The thing that I hate the most about that day is that I was the one that got to see that look . Not her. All she saw was the anger. Looking back on it now, I believe that was the true nail in the coffin of their marriage and she never got to see it. I took the bullet on that one. With all of the dirty details in that book I wanted to say to her that with every one of the Om's thrusts up into her was another nail in the coffin of their marriage. I would never say it to her but the thought has crossed my mind more than once.
At 16 I certainly knew right from wrong. Why didn't she? How could I possibly go to her first because she lost my trust completely the moment she had the A. I won't go into all the details as they are brutal and I don't want to go there, but as one of the things I read to show you how ill she was, or as some people call it here "in the fog", there is one passage in that book that stuck out to me. I'm paraphrasing here:
"Om says that I'm such a good f and so good at giving h that I should teach my kids how be great lovers."
Trust me there was a lot more to go with that. My parents believed I had only read a small passage in her diary. They had no idea how MUCH I really knew. I was "checking out" and detaching myself from my family so there was no way I was going to tell them. In fact, I subconsciously began to hide from them. I'm good. I'm fine. There is nothing to see here. Please go away and I'll be at home as little as possible. And so began me burying it all inside me and not dealing with it. Some of the other things I read in that book were that my aunt (my mom's sister) was an enabler. My mom would sometimes carry out her A at my aunts house as my cousins were all gown up or away at college. In fact, my mom and aunt would sometimes go out on dates together with their boyfriends (my aunt had been divorced for a long time (not due to an A). Same with many of their mutual friends. Those "friends" had even introduced my mom to Om and they carried out their A at their "friends" houses as well. I knew from her diary first hand where the allegiances were. But who cares. I'm checking out.
Looking back as the days and weeks went on post DDay, I realize now how narcissistic my mother has been her entire life. My mom began IC and started to blame the A on depression. She began meds and treatment and still has to do both to this day. I will NEVER accept depression as an excuse for what she did. Shes's clearly sick and mentally ill, but find it impossible to understand someone's inability to choose right from wrong but more so to a family that they supposedly loved. A mistake, sure. Someone can make a mistake and a mistake is something you apologize for. What she was doing had clearly been going on for a while. Not exactly sure how long but clearly a long time. That's not a mistake. That's deliberate. She not only cheated on my father, but us as a family. She poisoned us and made the family sick. This gets worse over the years post DDay but I'll get to that in a bit.
Last I saw the diary it was in the garage with my father on DDay. I have no idea where it disappeared to. Good riddance. The rest of what I heard is from my mother's own mouth. She was so wrapped up in her own bs that she failed to realize that my brother and I were in the same house as her let alone in the same room. We would walk in the door from school or where ever and she would either be on the phone in the kitchen or upstairs in her bedroom with the door open. She would be talking with my aunt, her "friends" or possibly even the Om for all I knew. I already knew most of the details so I wouldn't really listen. But I definitely remember her talking smack about my dad. All sorts of horrible lies. How wonderful Om was blah blah blah. She clearly didn't love us, her family. Now that all this was out in the open, she was hell bent talking about it to whomever was in ear shot. I remember her saying on one of those calls that she was done with all the lies and cover up and she was going to talk about it to get it out in the open with everyone. She had no idea that I was standing right behind her. Or maybe she did. I didn't care because I was "checking out". She lost me on DDay anyway.
Just a quick word here to all the WSs out there. As a child it's hard NOT know what is going on when you live in a house with someone. It doesn't matter how careful you think you are being. I know my mother is a narcissist and it's all about her all the time. But whether it's a diary, a journal, emails, texts, phone calls, whatever.... No matter how careful you think you're being you probably aren't being careful enough. My mother didn't leave that diary out deliberately to get caught. I know that now and I will get to more of that later. As a WS you have to be honest with your kids and then shield them from as much of the details as you can. And even then it's probably not enough. Case in point, my brother. Kids have a way of finding things out when curiosity steps in.
A few months post DDay, my brother came to me and asked me 2 questions. First was he wanted to know if it was true that I had read our mother's diary. I said yes. Next question he asked me was if it was true that there were "others"? That was the first I heard that and told him as much. He walked away and I didn't pursue where he heard that. I was done. I had checked out already. Clearly he had done some snooping of his own and was now clued into what was going on. He could have been listening into any number of conversations. I'm fairly certain it wasn't my dad who tipped him off. My dad was now "checking out" as well. He was no longer the same person and was always preoccupied with something. I'm pretty sure I could guess what. He was a happy go lucky guy. He whistled while he did things, made jokes all the time, etc. I never saw that side of him again post DDay. Even 25 years later. But hey, whatever. I'm not in this family any more. I'm out. Detached. He never mentioned a word about the A back then. It wasn't until about 5 years later that he brought it up.
I'm sure my mom thought everything was fine with them going forwards. She and my dad were working it out. At one point they were having sex almost every night and were very vocal about it. Overcompensating? Probably. Even most of my friends heard their vocal sex my senior year of high school when they would come to pick me up or we would go to my room to get something. I didn't care what my friends heard. I was there to eat, sleep, and go to school while my parents were absorbed in what was going on between them. This is how life in that house went on for the next couple of years. I began college, my brother began high school, and then it happened.
Remember that poison was in the water. I was checked out, I'm pretty sure my dad was checked out, and my mother was self absorbed. I need to be clear. This next part I do not blame on the A. I blame this more on myself for checking out and how my family was sick. We were no longer a family that I could see and we were all wrapped up in our own world. Oct 1994 after a few years of blah, my brother committed suicide. I'll spare the details on that one as that's another story for another website someday. I don't think any of us saw that coming. I've blamed myself a lot over the years because I had checked out. My dad had checked out. My mother, whatever... And of course my brother went out as mad as hell and it was controversial. No nothing like taking other people out or anything stupid like that. But it certainly grabbed the media's attention and next thing we had media camped out on our front lawn. Thank God social media and the internet had not been invented yet. But now throw that incident and the fact that we have to watch it on tv, whatever was left of my parent's relationship was obliterated. And if it's possible I checked out even further. That house we were living in was a wasteland.
After that my parents were done with whatever R was still trying to go on. Let me rephrase, my dad was done and my mom was too wrapped up in a new set of issues with the one's she already had to notice that my dad was done. I've been able to see it since DDay. Why can't she see it? Oh right, she never saw the look of complete and utter devastation. I did.
Make another long story short my dad went for the first woman who threw herself at him. His secretary who's a complete nightmare in her own right. Sicker than my mother actually. She once tried to stab him with a butcher's knife but again a story for another time. Feb 1995 he came to me to have a heart to heart. He told me he had been seeing another woman for a few months and that he was leaving my mother. He was filing for a separation and was going to work on a D. I told him that I honestly don't know how he stuck around as long as he did. To which his response was that he only did it for my brother and I. He was planning on leaving once my brother had graduated high school but now that he was gone he didn't see the point anymore. He felt the need to purge his soul about his life. He had a lot to say, but he never once spoke of the A. He never once spoke ill of my mother. Ever. He asked one thing of me that day that he left her. He said that someday I would probably have a family of my own and would come to a realization of what she had done. He said to please have mercy on her and to treat her well and with respect since she was my mother. He was right. I do realize every time I look at my kids. I've tried to have mercy. The only way I know how to do that is to try and speak to her as little as possible. I forgave her a long time ago, but she makes it awfully hard hard to forget. She still talks about the A which is why I ended up here. More of that later.
The next part of my life was dealing (or not dealing) with her and the D. Same thing with the phone as before. Bad mouthing my father, packs of lies, whatever. Here was an interesting point that I heard. I once heard her say that my father had been telling her he was impudent for the last couple of months. Since he told her he was leaving for an Ow, she realized that he was lying to her so that he could be faithful to his girlfriend. Ouch. That had to have hurt. But good for you for being faithful dad. Whatever. Who cares. My mom kept trying to throw me into the divorce and spoke ill of my father every chance she could further driving the wedge between me and her. At one point it was a constant obsession for her. I remember her stating that she was really pissed that he had even cut out their mutual "friends". I can't believe that she didn't see that he probably cut them out for 2 reasons. They could communicate back to her what he was up to and he was still probably pissed for letting her screw Om at their houses. And that they knew about Om and didn't tell him. C'mon mom. Really?!? My dad took the high road with me. Never spoke about the D. Never spoke about my mother at all to me for that matter. Occasionally over the years he would ask how she was doing but that was it. He would also say that he never wished her any ill will.
As soon as I was done with college I moved to another state to start my life over. I didn't party all that much in college as I went to school full time, worked full time, played in rock bands full time, and lived with my girlfriend. My only release was to play in bands and have as much sex with my girlfriend as possible to fill some sort of void in me...I think. I pulled 16 all nighters studying in my last semester in college to show how much I was burning the candle at both ends. I didn't even stick around for my graduation. Day after my final exam I moved away, had an interview the following day, and then started working in a large busy restaurant in a major city 2 days later. I had left my old home behind and didn't want to look back. That's when I numbed myself for almost 3 years and partied hard with alcohol. Rode my bike back and forth to work everyday (no driving since I was drunk all the time). I had the degree in my pocket. It was time to detach some more.
Did I mention that moving away made my mother attempt suicide? Yep, emergency trip back to old home to deal with that situation. But f#$% it. I didn't care. I wanted to get back to my new life so I could drink and have fun! I was young and in my 20's. I was living the life. I was a good boy all through the process at my old home and I had earned the right to completely obliterate myself. I felt nothing for the next 3 years. Well almost nothing. Oddly enough I did have a bright spot. I met and fell in love with my future wife while working at said restaurant. First day I met her I was so green because I had blacked out from drinking just a few hours before I started my 10am shift. Needless to say I didn't make a very good first impression. How I tricked her into falling in love with me in the long run I will never know.
I once heard that when someone close to you passes away, they leave you with a gift. I believe that has happened to me when my brother died. When I try and focus hard enough, I can detach from myself and take an objective look. A couple months after my brother died I remember sitting on my bedroom floor taking a look at myself and I didn't like what I saw. Not only had I detached from everything, which I was ok with and needed to be detached, but I also became a very negative person. You know that guy where every day is the worst day in their life? Yep, that was me. I made a conscious decision that I was going to cut that out and actually said out loud that "I'm going to be alright". I had all sorts of hard drugs around me and briefly wanted to go that route before I graduated college. But after that conversation with myself I focused on the prize of graduating and getting the hell out of there. I had to stop the dark cloud from following me. It's something that I've had to struggle with my entire life since DDay. I still blame myself for most things, but I've had to force myself to have a positive attitude so that I don't sink into an abyss. I will always struggle with this but I'm at least self aware. I struggle with confidence as well since it's always my fault.
Next time I took a look at myself was in my late 20's and I had this amazing woman that I was with. I knew I wanted to marry her and I knew what I had. Now having trust issues with women since DDay, for some reason I never had a trust issue with this woman. I let her in and have never regretted it for a second. I love and trust her completely. I cleaned myself up, stopped obliterating myself with booze, got a career job, and asked her to marry me. We've been married for 13 years and together for 15. We have 3 kids that mean more to me than life itself (ages 9, 8, and 3). My dad was right though. I do have a family of my own and when I look at my kids, I think how could she do that? I guess that my brother and I never really mattered all that much and were never a factor to her in the A. I think if people realized that the A has a direct impact on the entire family and not just the spouse there might be a lot less affairs. But then again, probably not not.
To this day I have serious issues with my mother. I can hardly be around her. I never say anything to her about any of it. I like to think that I'm above it and I did forgive her. But my anger always simmers at the surface whenever she's around. There is just too much damage even 25 years later. What brought me to this web site is that this past Oct 2013 I had a trip back to visit my dad and I took my mom out for breakfast on one of the mornings I was there. During which she got all teary eyed and said that Om had died recently of leukemia. Really?!? I didn't say a word. My insides wanted to scream "GOOD!!!! I HOPE HE DIED A LONG SLOW PAINFUL DEATH THAT MOTHER F@#$ER!!!!" Instead I said nothing. She starts talking about how the Om would never leave his wife , blah, blah, blah. Here I am 40 years old and after 25 years of this shit what's the point? A lot of the stuff I have read on line says that I should confront her and talk about it. Again, what's the point? She will just twist it and make it all about her. She always does that with any sort of confrontation or anything at all really. Or maybe she would attempt suicide again. The problem at this point I can clearly see is her. And the older I get the less patience I have for it. I'm sure it will come to a head someday but I'm trying to repress myself so that doesn't happen.
Instead here I am right now writing to this site. But after that breakfast this past Oct, I'm as mad as hell right now. She visited us for a week at Christmas. While I want her to be a part of her grand kids lives, I realize I have nothing but animosity for her. I hardly said a word to her the entire week. Nothing beyond how's the weather type conversation. But since she has the gift of gab, that 's all I need to let her do is talk. It's been that way for 25 years. Just let her talk and ignore her. I guess that's how it's going to be. She's going to be 70 in April. When I look at her now I think how can this little old frail lady have caused so much damage and pain. She never was remorseful about any of it. Not really. I heard those conversations back when. I saw the tears in her eyes when talking about Om recently. If she was remorseful she wouldn't still be bringing it up. FUCK HER!!!
Which reminds me...I remember when I was 15 and in the time frame this A was going on. Some strange guy would call the house all the time and ask for her. I'm sure it was her KISA. She would jump up and say oh it must be the UPS guy. C'mon!! Really?!? WTF!!! What UPS guy calls the house and then your on the phone with him for a great length of time. At the time I had no idea what that was about but I do now. So many of those details of the A will pop back into my head when I least expect them too. Remember that your kids probably know a lot more than you think they do or that you may want them to. Be direct with them. Engage them if you can. Give them any answer they want without the gross details. Honesty will count the most in the long run. They will realize and understand things as they get older. As I did. I wish I didn't have those gory details but I do. Speaking of which I confessed to my dad that I do have those details. I think that confession crushed him.
On New Years day a few short weeks ago I called him to check in and wish him a Happy New Year. Make a long story short he started to ask questions about my mother. As a result, we actually had a conversation about the A. I told him that mom said the Om was dead. He was sorry to hear it (yeah right). I told him what I really thought of the Om and that I was happy that he was dead. I confessed that I had read a lot more of the diary than I had lead on. That I knew many of the details. And that I had heard my mother talking on the phone about the whole thing almost daily. My dad said that the Om was married and that his wife knew about the A. Apparently my mom wasn't the only one. But Om's wife stuck her head in the sand since Om was wealthy and powerful. His wife had a marriage of convenience for herself. I told him I remembered about the conversation we had had 20 years ago about taking it easy on my mother. He told me that the problem wasn't us. That it was her. No one could ever make her happy and at this point it's not for us to do so. Until she makes herself happy no one else ever will. I asked him about the "others" and he wanted to know where I had heard that. No way I could tell him that I heard it from my brother. I suspect this conversation was already killing him. He confirmed that there were other affairs that she had but refused to elaborate any more than that on any of it.
A note on my aunt. She passed away from breast cancer a few years back. I went to see her before she died. I couldn't bring myself to go to her funeral though. My wife got sick when she was pregnant with our 2nd and I used that as the excuse. I jumped at that excuse. I couldn't forget that my aunt was an enabler for my mom's mess and that she let Om screw my mom at her place and went out on double dates with them. Her allegiance was to my mother. Not the rest of my family.
There are so many more facets to how all of this had a major impact on me. Trust issues, anger issues, confidence issues, having a voracious sexual appetite to fill a void (but I've NEVER cheated on anyone in my life. a fact that I'm proud of, so thanks for that mom, I will NEVER be like you), blaming myself, etc etc etc blah blah blah. Truth is now that I've opened a flood gate I could probably go on for another month but I would bore you all to death. I feel drained and my heart is racing right now. I'm still shaking and have a bad headache. I think I want to throw up. Oh wait, I just did that here on this page!!!
I'm exhausted just getting this out.
I feel for ALL of you on this site!!! Especially where your kids are involved. Many seem to be forgotten in this mess and I feel for them the most. Please keep them in mind when dealing with each other and when discussing the other spouse in front them. Maybe in my next post I will focus on some of the positive that has risen out of the ashes for me. If there is a next post.