Yes the initial trigger was a serious health (life threatening) issue with me and long term serious health complications after.
He had zero coping skills. He self soothed/medicated with affairs and porn. Poor choices. Built up walls to protect himself. Shut me out completely.
He's now digging deep in therapy as to why he chose that route.
Former 80s Icon wishful thinking
Me - WW 38
Him - BH 39 (mpb1974)
Met - 8/13/99
Started dating - 9/11/99
Moved in together - 3/03
Engaged - 6/5/09
Married - 8/21/10
DD - 1/24/13 (affair began in May 2009)
I actually wrote the author a note to let her know we got a lot from it and she wrote back! She will do phone consults but they are way too $$$ for us.
Don't get me wrong, I don't think he's a good person and I never want anything to do with him ever again. But I don't want to waste any valuable head space on him.
It wasn't him I was attracted to, I was just desperate to escape the hurricane that was my mind and life. I longed for safety and a place I could hide from my life and from myself. A place where my real life ceased to exist. It seems pretty pathetic to me now, how I could think it was OK to try and fool myself and my BSO that all was good and there was nothing bad going on. But I guess hindsight is always 20/20 and I can't change the past, just the path leading me towards the future.
I experienced life trauma (drama) both prior to and during the A as well as earlier in life. I believe my "trauma" pre/during A would not have been so traumatic if I had healthy coping mechanisms. And having the A, going against my morals and belief system was pretty dang traumatic iykwim.
Lately I've been working through childhood trauma that was rug-swept. As long as I have been on SI and in IC I have always been skeptical about the significance of childhood trauma in my decision to have an A. Just recently I'm starting to buy in that there might be something there after being told months ago by some VERY wise SIers, IC/MC, and my BH. Sometimes I can be a bit dense....or as BH says, hardheaded.
I don't think trauma is a reason or an excuse. I think it can tip the scale for a person with poor boundaries, low respect for self/others, poor coping mechanisms, emotional immaturity...insert issues here...
My MIL died in April of that year, the A started in October, 6 months later.
While WS and his mother were not close, OW was to a certain extent. OW would visit MIL when she returned to their hometown. MIL wanted WS to marry OW years ago.
While I feel her death was a possible trigger for the A, WS did have a better way to deal with his grief, he just didn't know it at the time.
I'm pretty sure After the Affair was the book I bought for us on DDay, I bought a copy for me and a copy for him. We used it as a workbook of sorts, I highly recommend it too.
It's all shits and giggles until someone giggles and shits.
It makes sense to me that when our lives are functioning well, when we feel good about ourselves, when our marriages are in a happier place we aren't as predisposed to the underbelly of our fears and poor coping skills.
I mean there are many different types of infidelity. Its a little like understanding why someone who is a drug addict or poor steals vs someone like winona ryder shop lifting. We find the theft in any circumstance unacceptable and against the law but in the latter scenario it is more appalling.
I think it pays to understand how life events can cause fractures in a person's make up to be revealed or become more pronounced. I know the damage ends up being the same to the parties involved but it makes sense that some people find themselves in an unhealthy place making bad decisions.
One of the things that I have gotten most from the waywards here and in my life is the sense that we all of us can underestimate our abilities in some ways and overestimate our abilities in others. That when faced with a crisis of whatever sort that it was shocking how quickly they found themselves disabled. Its kind of like thinking you might be able to go two rounds but find yourself on your back in under 30 seconds.
So aside from the ensuing damage caused to loved ones and to the self is the sense that "I never thought it could happen to me, that I could find myself being unfaithful and omg I was so wrong and I find that frightening."
It is very much a cautionary tale I have taken to heart. Because I know after being on the receiving end of it, it is really easy to think.. oh I could never do this myself. And the waywards chime in.. "you really don't know until you are there, I thought the same way at one time." Not as a way to alleviate any guilt but as a way to say be careful and take care.
I know if I'm ever hit with some very serious life altering stuff and I'm in a committed relationship I am going to be more cautious with my boundaries at that time. I am so grateful for this space and for the waywards here. I've learned a tremendous amount.
[This message edited by Syzy at 9:15 PM, March 23rd (Saturday)]