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Just Found Out Post Reply     Print Topic    
User Topic: He sees "potential"
LearningToFly
♀ Member
Member # 39073
Default  Posted: 10:20 AM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My H received an email from a high school friend I haven't met. They reconnected a couple years ago and meet when the man is in town. This man is married with two young adult children. They have sent Christmas cards for the past two years which include a picture of the whole family. Anyway, he asked in the email how things are going on the "home front." My husbands reply was "I see potential so I keep going."

He has also said this to me. When I hear that my first thought is potential for what? Then I think, we have been together 30 years is potential all you see?. You were madly in love with your AP after a few months. What do you plan to do with this "potential?" Or are you waiting for me to change again - change so I just accept being treated invisibly while you do what you feel like all the time. It doesn't sound like he is taking responsibility in the destruction of our marriage through the affair. He is still so passive until it comes to something HE wants. It doesn't seem like he wants a loving marriage.

Am I framing this "potential" in a negative way? Is there a positive way to see this so that it means he wants our marriage to work and is willig to do the WORK or does it sound like he is coasting again until he has the opportunity to check out with a GF again.


Me - BS (53) Him-WS(58)
Her OW(55) HighSchoolGirlfriend
Together 30 years Married 28 Kids 24,21,18
D day Feb 26 2013 after 20 months
D day March 4 they met again "to say goodbye"
D day April 2 found out about secret email

Posts: 179 | Registered: Apr 2013
confused615
♀ Member
Member # 30826
Default  Posted: 10:24 AM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Does this friend know about your WH's affair?

Honestly? I would be insulted if my WH told anyone he stayed because he saw potential. It kinda sounds like he is staying to give you the chance to prove you're worthy of him.


BS(me)41
FWH 45
4 kids..21,20,11,9
M: June 2001
D-Day: 8/10/10
Status: Happily Reconciled.

..that feeling you get in your stomach, when you heart's broken. It's like all the butterflies just died.


Posts: 7110 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: Indiana
hopingforhappy
♀ Member
Member # 29288
Default  Posted: 10:40 AM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think the question is not what potential he sees in you (or your M, I was not clear on that), but what potential you see in him. From what you have posted so far, he sees to be on thin ice with that one.


Me--BW (56)
Him--FWH (53)--5yr. LTA--OW probably BPD
Married 20 years
DS-18, DD-15
Reconciling--but boy is it hard!

Posts: 1262 | Registered: Aug 2010
LearningToFly
♀ Member
Member # 39073
Default  Posted: 1:43 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I have loved him for 30 years. He is kind to others, works hard at his job, loves our kids, and is easy going. These wonderful qualities are also frustrating because he will throw me under a bus and break his word so that he doesn't have to say no to someone else, he hides from intimacy behind his work, he is a friend not a father to our kids and his easy goingness turns to passiveness quickly.

I have worked on acceptance for who he is and ways to find happiness in the marriage without his being emotionally involved with me. It has been hard and heartbreaking at times. Its been so lonely. Its been tough being the bad guy to our kids while he is "playing" with them. I feel like the old woman and he is a little boy when it comes to responsibility.

The affair has made it a different ballgame. He believed he emotionally connected with OW. He put out effort to connect with her, to build her up, to surprise her and make her feel loved. I think he found it easy because he could paint a pretty picture for her to believe while they were a thousand miles apart. She was full of great things to say to him about his looks, his personality, and his character. She comforted him when he told his stories about how I mistreat him and don't understand him. He thanked her constantly for "validating" his feelings. The only conflict they had in their relationship was that they were both married. It was like Romeo and Juliet...so much love but trapped. It brought them together. . . them against the world especially the world they lived in with their spouses who couldn't see how wonderful, beautiful, and unique they were.

I don't want a divorce. I really want to keep our family together even though the kids are ready to fly within months. (I also think its awful that they are leaving the nest knowing that there may not be a nest to return to ... no security at such a vulnerable time in life. ) i also don't see "potential" with WS. He is all about himself. I am open and vulnerable with me and he insists on skating on the surface. He could easily return to his affair or start a new one. I am not safe with him.

We are starting MC with a new counselor and today she interviewed us about our childhoods. My husbands shared that he had a great childhood, playing, being loved my his mom with a dad who wasn't really involved, no affection between the parents. He really didn't connect deeply with anyone as a child or as an adult. I was the closest he came to being connected. I see that he is at a huge disadvantage to be involved in a true marriage. (this has been a theme for 30 years with me trying and trying to connect and him pulling away and doing his own thing.) The sad things is that while the C was interviewing him, it didn't connect for him. He answered all the questions and walked away unaware of the theme of his story. I hope that he will be able to see it in subsequent appointments. Otherwise, I don't see "potential." I stay now because I have invested my life in this marriage and I don't want to give up if there is any chance that our family doesn't have to be split. I'm willing to walk with him as he learns to think beyond himself but he has to see that its a problem (or care that its a problem) before anything will change.

[This message edited by LearningToFly at 5:19 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday)]


Me - BS (53) Him-WS(58)
Her OW(55) HighSchoolGirlfriend
Together 30 years Married 28 Kids 24,21,18
D day Feb 26 2013 after 20 months
D day March 4 they met again "to say goodbye"
D day April 2 found out about secret email

Posts: 179 | Registered: Apr 2013
atsenaotie
♂ Member
Member # 27650
Default  Posted: 1:54 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I am not safe with him.

I think that this is the bigger issue than his phrasing.

"I see potential so I keep going." is a better description for you than him, and I can imagine it is frustrating that he does not get that.

...the C was interviewing him, it didn't connect for him. He answered all the questions and walked away unaware of the theme of his story.

This is why IC is often needed in place of or in addition to MC. Until he owns and begins to address these pre-existing issues, there is little he will be able to do effectively in helping to work on the M. MC's work on marriages, which could mean teaching you to compensate for being M to a man with attachment or other disorders. IC is where they can really work with him to address his issues, if he wants to.

FWW and I started in MC, but shifted that to IC (for 2+ years) so that she could work on her issues.


LTA BS 53
M 1990, dday 10-5-09
Separated and Divorcing

Posts: 4074 | Registered: Feb 2010 | From: FL
1Faith
♀ Member
Member # 38975
Default  Posted: 1:57 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

LTF

I completely understand your feelings.

I see potential = it's all about him and what he wants.

In a perfect world he would say "things are going better and I feel so fortunate my lovely wife is standing by my side as we work to continue to work on a stronger marriage"

Has he been through IC? He needs to find some humility and consider himself lucky that you see potential in him.


"I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it." - Maya Angelou

Posts: 1089 | Registered: Apr 2013
Jospehine85
♀ Member
Member # 35971
Default  Posted: 2:39 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

The affair has made it a different ballgame. He believed he emotionally connected with OW. He put out effort to connect with her, to build her up, to surprise her and make her feel loved. I think he found it easy because he could paint a pretty picture for her to believe while they were a thousand miles apart. She was full of great things to say to him about his looks, his personality, and his character. She comforted him when he told his stories about how I mistreat him and don't understand him. He thanked her constantly for "validating" his feelings. The only conflict they had in their relationship was that they were both married. It was like Romeo and Juliet...so much love but trapped. It brought them together. . . them against the world especially the world they lived in with their spouses who couldn't see how wonderful, beautiful, and unique they were.

Uh No. He did not connect with her. That is a complete joke. He didn't even know her.

Their "relationship" wasn't intimacy either. It was as far away as he could get from intimacy.

She is thousands of miles away. They did not see each other at their worst or even at their average. They saw only the very best behavior, saved for guests.

They shared no problems they had to deal with like kids or finances.

They have both created and projected a fantasy. They actually know nothing about the truth of each other and they PREFER it that way. I guarantee you that at least 50% of what they said to each other were lies. Had to be. How else do you make a liar and a cheater look good?

Yes, it sounds like your WH has some serious intimacy avoidance issue. So did mine. In fact, your quote above could have been me writing about my WH and his MOW.

I have been with my WH for 28 years total. It was only after the A I realized that he valued me in his life because I was a useful tool. I was support staff.

I COMPLETELY understand your loneliness LTF. I felt that way too. You can not keep living like that. You need to have someone start making deposits into your love bank. You need to have some form of human attachment. I suggest you read "Hold Me Tight". Then you need to decide what you want for your life. What will make LTF feel fulfilled. Then tell your WH either he provides it or you are out of there.

It is less lonely to live alone than to live with someone who refuses to show affection.

By the way, your husbands comment read to me as "I refuse to show any form of attachment to my BW or M" He just isn't going to acknowledge that you are a wonderful person or that he loves you. That is a problem with him. Not you.

And STOP trying to look for a positive way to frame his behavior. For pete's sake, HE should be bending over backwards to frame everything he says about you in a positive light. You are reversing roles here. You are the victim, not him. He should be worried about your perceptions, not the other way around.


Me - BS 40s
WH - 50s
4 Kids
Dday May 2012

Posts: 811 | Registered: Jun 2012
Jrazz
♀ Guide
Member # 31349
Default  Posted: 3:04 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My FWH was using the word "potential" for working on my relationship while he was still in the A.

He dropped that crap and was all in when I took DD and moved out of the house. (I recommend kicking out over moving out but FWH wouldn't know legal recourse if it bit him in the behind.)

To me, the word "potential" equates to one foot out the door, and you deserve better than that. Maybe time to brush up on the 180? You want someone to fight for you, not put you on a list of things that may or may not be of benefit to them.

(((LearningToFly)))


We are what we repeatedly do, excellence, then is not an act but a habit. - Aristotle

Posts: 16265 | Registered: Feb 2011 | From: California
Blobette
♀ Member
Member # 36519
Default  Posted: 3:14 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My first reaction to that was -- what the hell is this? A job evaluation? This is the kind of thing a boss says to an employee when their work isn't quite up to snuff.

I agree that your WH sounds like he has intimacy avoidance issues that need to be probed in IC. And that you need to be in charge. He is *not* the boss, evaluating your performance. I agree that 180 may be in order.

*snort* POTENTIAL!!! I'll cram your potential...


BS (me): 49
WS: 50
Married: 25 yrs
Kids: 2
OW: Co-worker, 7 yr LTA
DD 8/1/2012, Working on R

Posts: 1051 | Registered: Aug 2012
atsenaotie
♂ Member
Member # 27650
Default  Posted: 3:38 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I have worked on acceptance for who he is and ways to find happiness in the marriage without his being emotionally involved with me. It has been hard and heartbreaking at times. Its been so lonely.

I found the book Sexual Detours by Hines was very helpful in understanding the A dynamics. It was the book that really got me to understand that her As were not about me.

It also helped me to understand the distance FWW had to travel to be a fully participating M partner. It can be lonely bneing M'd to a spouse who fears intimacy.


LTA BS 53
M 1990, dday 10-5-09
Separated and Divorcing

Posts: 4074 | Registered: Feb 2010 | From: FL
Nature_Girl
♀ Member
Member # 32554
Default  Posted: 3:44 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

That word would not set well with me. In fact, it would tick me off so much that any potential he thought he saw would be the potential that I was about to blow my top.


Me = BS (Stay-at-home-mom)
Him = EX-d out (abusive troglodyte NPD SA)
3 tween-aged kids
Together 20 years
D-Day: Memorial Weekend 2011
2013 - I DIVORCED HIM, I'M FREE!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBOJpIwF47Y

Posts: 9231 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: USA
Althea
♀ Member
Member # 37765
Default  Posted: 3:52 PM, July 2nd (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Ugh LTF, I am so angry for you! When a WS single handedly blows up a marriage, and someone asks how things are going, that is not a heartening response. Email is a hard one, and who knows what he meant by potential, but given the rest of your post, I think you are right on track with your response.

What bothers me most in your post is this:

I have worked on acceptance for who he is and ways to find happiness in the marriage without his being emotionally involved with me.

Why? Is this the kind of marriage you deserve? Particularly in light of the fact that he has also cheated on you? He doesn't take an active role in parenting and forces you to mommy him. Why accept this? Don't you deserve more?

There are a lot of similarities in our WH's in terms of easy going attitude and passiveness. I always gave mine a pass too. It was only after he basically took advantage of that after Dday and TT'd me for 4 months that I stopped. At that point I was so done that I decided that unless I was going to have my dream partner, I was out.

I spent months in IC furious at myself accepting so little for so long. I also came to realize that the marriage I had was so superficial because I allowed my WH to skate through without any real emotional connection.

I say make him work. Make him dig into his FOO issues (I can just about guarantee it wasn't as happy as he is painting it), and make him be the husband you deserve. How? By being done with his crap. Concentrate on yourself, figure out why you have spent the last 30 years accepting so little. If he doesn't straighten out and fly right then you really need to ask yourself why you want to stay married to this man when you deserve so much more.

(((LearningToFly)))


Taking it one day at a time.

Posts: 437 | Registered: Dec 2012
LearningToFly
♀ Member
Member # 39073
Default  Posted: 1:17 PM, July 3rd (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I can't change him but I can figure out why I have settled for so little and change myself. When I go to IC, I get sidetracked into talking about what I need to do with my kids or my H. I really need to focus on myself and find it very hard to do.


Me - BS (53) Him-WS(58)
Her OW(55) HighSchoolGirlfriend
Together 30 years Married 28 Kids 24,21,18
D day Feb 26 2013 after 20 months
D day March 4 they met again "to say goodbye"
D day April 2 found out about secret email

Posts: 179 | Registered: Apr 2013
Jospehine85
♀ Member
Member # 35971
Default  Posted: 2:08 PM, July 3rd (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

When I go to IC, I get sidetracked into talking about what I need to do with my kids or my H. I really need to focus on myself and find it very hard to do.

Yep. This is what I need to do too. I imagine many of us do.


Me - BS 40s
WH - 50s
4 Kids
Dday May 2012

Posts: 811 | Registered: Jun 2012
SoVerySadNow
♀ Member
Member # 36711
Default  Posted: 5:07 PM, July 3rd (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

They saw only the very best behavior, saved for guests

This statement was an 'ah-ha!" moment for me.
Affair partners are "guests" in each other's delusional states. No reality at all as can easily see.
Perhaps your H seeing potential was a comment about the potential for the M to survive his waywardness and his potential not invite guests into it.
My WH has difficulty with communication, maybe yours does too? Crossing my fingers for you.


Me:BW
Him:WH
D-day(s),after years of TT and Gaslighting was Labor Day Weekend 2012, continuing for a week after. *Dammit! More TT 3/9/13
Really trending toward D- planning about it is my "happy place" now.

Posts: 1280 | Registered: Sep 2012 | From: Sunny Florida
Topic Posts: 15

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