but, i took my mothers advice...and the people from SI who told me to 180 him hard. and i did. i went nc...and moved forward with my own life. why didnt i file for d immediately. because in my heart...after all he had done...i wasnt ready. you know? i think you know when you know...no doubts or anything. well, like you i was "asking questions" still.
a lawyer told me that he knows the difference of when his client is ready to divorce...or not. and i clearly was not ready yet because i still thought.."if only he would do this...or what if he calls and does this?"
if you have doubts...and it is clear that you do...there is nothing wrong with doing a serious 180.....nothing at all. you continue to go to ic, get help for the pain, set some clear boundaries for you....that cannot be negotiated...and give yourself time. a few months from dday is still very early. and when there are children involved, it makes it even more complicated.
you can divorce him whenever you want...and you dont have to be subjected to any cruelty from him if you 180....you could consider giving it 6 months to a year...to "see what happens." there is no shame in that. and if you do decide to divorce him, well, then you will know that you did all you could....and can walk away with no "questions."
my husband eventually got his head out of his ass....and agreed to all my requirements for r....it has been a long, painful, and rocky road attempting to r...but we are doing the work. if he screws up again, i will divorce him without hesitation.
stay strong. you can be strong and 180 him.
There's no way to feel serene or calm or content when you're processing major trauma. Even the blank shock, or disassociated state most of us go through for the first span may give the illusion or appearance of being calm, but it isn't the same.
Even when we stay with a spouse, even when they are 100% remorseful, even if they are trying for complete transparency, I don't think the full story is ever known. People that commit betrayals like that live in tangled realities with so much disconnected or skewed, there really isn't a way to see what was "real" versus how they imagined it.
Don't beat yourself up for the unknown "if."
For me, I'm at the place where I think I possibly made a mistake in being in the relationship I'm in, that we've never been on the same page. We're in R, but I'm starting to understand more the ramifications for me personally and there's no good answer.
If you can make a clean break, do it.
[This message edited by Reality at 4:54 PM, July 8th (Monday)]
What I'm finding sucks about this is that my instincts tell me to continue doing what I'm doing and walk.
The main thing I worked on in IC was trusting my gut.
When I look back on my life, every single bad decision was when I was going against my gut instincts.
Married: 11 years, no kids
The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark. -Michelangelo
He would be breaking down your door, pleading for a second chance. Telling you freely it is you he wants and no other. That he is ashamed of his behavior and will do what it takes to prove to you that in future your life will be safe, secure and filled with his undying love.
Has any of that happened? If he was wiser now, he wouldn't listen to your request of NC, he would be acting on his desire to win you back and rebuild the M.
So far that isn't happening. So don't doubt yourself for protecting the essence of you. Stay strong.
If he does contact you, let him speak his piece. Don't give him any hints of how you might give him a second chance, He needs to ask for that chance. Watch the actions. (His sending emails, telling you he is closing accounts etc, says so much about where his head is at.
I like the idea that NC also means "no hurt". During our breakup he would call me and do this whole fake "I'm so worried about you" / "checking in" act. It was like he was checking in with a repair man-- this phony, distant tone of voice. That's what I'm also afraid of: some kind of sense of obligation on his part to check in once the initial NC term is up. That would hurt so much.
So would finding out he's with her now.
So would finding out he didn't stay in IC.
So would realizing after a few days that he's NOT going to call.
It's a no win until I get some more distance, allow myself to have a few more crying fits, begin to learn to push it all out of my mind so I can work.
So the advice to do this at a pace I can handle is also so valuable. Keep up the 180. I'm still seemingly doing everything right in that respect (outwardly). Put money down on a new place for myself before going on a business trip (where I am now) to give a presentation alone on something we designed together (truth be told, I'm privately still such a mess, I really should have backed out, but I'm trying to move forward). Sure, I'm running back to my hotel room so I can sob every few hours... But no one knows that but me, you guys and the poor friends who check in daily.
And you guys really think that a few months isn't too long to still be feeling this way? I found out end of April, yadda yadda, NC / full 180 (after DDay#2) May 10th ish. I had a good week or so in mid June and thought I was making progress but lately I feel Iike I'm as bad as I was in the beginning. I have more mental clarity and I can control the crying better... But the pain and sorrow is just as intense.
NC is a huge help with giving you space and safety. A lot of the worst trauma is having to assimilate new terrible information when you're already incredibly wounded. You gave yourself a huge gift by having time to think before dealing with more details.
<3, Phantom. Wishing all the best for you.
Keep your head straight about the truth and reality of your WH. You may have 10+ yrs worth of seemingly good memories, but that is now morphed by what you have learned about him (infidelity changes everything): He is entitled, selfish, immature. He has disrespected you and the M, and has hurt you in the worst way possible. (And still is by his ongoing indifference and apathy.) He is sneaky; a liar; comfortable with deception and manipulation...and with humiliating you. He was comfortable betraying your trust, talking about you behind your back, and giving himself to another woman both emotionally and physically what belongs to you. He was/is not protective of you and the M. He will do what feels good to him without any regard for you and your feelings. What he did was cruel. And, this is the short-list of reasons why you wouldn't even choose him as a friend let alone a H. Keep this all straight in your head. Let those mind movies of them f'ing play in your head. It is all very painful, but this IS the truth and reality of your WH and M. Now that you know the truth about him, you can make informed decisions about YOUR life and your future...who to hold close, 'let in', and allow to be a part of your life...and who to keep at a distance or eliminate. To help you keep perspective, also keep in mind that IF you were to attempt R and to move forward with the M, it would mean incorporating all the ugly, disturbing truth and reality of him and what he did to you into the M. I have been reading infidelity forums for many years...and know personally several BS...and I can tell you that "R" can come at a huge price...often including compromising your values...trading your dignity and self respect...in a chronic struggle to 'get over it' or accept or incorporate infidelity into your M. It is a hard road with even the most remorseful WS. And, I have read numerous posts by BS who believed they were happily R'd...who down the road...even years later...find they cannot suppress any longer the unsettling truth and reality of the infidelity which occurred in their M. They revisit the prospect of D, but struggle a whole new kind of struggle because they've been allegedly happily R'd for years with a 'wonderful' WH. But they want out because it was never ok that their WH cheated; it was a deal-breaker all along. I am guessing that since you relatively quickly exited the M shortly after D-day that infidelity IS a deal-breaker for you. Hold onto that truth; honor it and honor yourself by living consistent with your own values.
Sorry...such a rambling post!
You have no kids. You can cut your losses, make a clean break, and be done with the bs associated with infidelity.
Whenever you 2nd guess your decision to leave, mentally recreate that list of all the many reasons you do not want to go backwards into a relationship riddled with distrust, lack of care, and the glaring truth that your WH does/did not love you the way a husband should love a wife.
Take his A at 'face value'. See it for what it is. Stay in reality.
Yes, I wish I had left sooner. I often thought that I could move into the condo with the twins instead of his parents moving (we were getting them out of our house).
I was too afraid. I didn't know how to approach the situation and how I would handle everything.
Once the dust settles and you realize that you can do it on your own and it's better than being in a shitty relationship you think, "why didn't I do this sooner?"
It still sucks.
It still hurts.
The pain can still take your breath away.
I am in a roller coaster dip right now so take anything I say with a grain of salt.
Nowhere to go but up right?
You said yourself, he is broken. You can not fix him. IF he does the work, fixes himself, gets healthy And you are still around And He moves the mountains with his actions to prove that to you. No law says you can't take him back then.
You are young enough to carve out the life you desire. Carpe Diem.
You will be sad, are allowed to grieve. Just remember, sometimes taking the hard road initially makes for a much more comfortable road long term. Hugs to you
All of the work I've done since DDay has been to convince myself that it is over, no R, I deserve better. Part of that, admittedly, is because he did make it impossible to R on my terms and I refused to chace/beg him. I've been trying to mourn the relationship now instead of allowing myself to hang in limbo. I even sent goodbye letters to his family. And, yes, NC has helped me get so much further down that sobering road. Evidently I can live without him. Not happily, yet... But it is happening.
I'm thinking now that perhaps what is going on is that I'm coming out of my own trauma a little more and beginning to learn my triggers. Doing this business trip without him has been brutal. Happy couple at the airport? Ugh. Gag me. Anyone still wearing a wedding ring-- I hate them, too (I miss mine so much!). Love song on the radio? Anyone have any tissues? Oh, look, his favorite whiskey. Oh, look, that new movie is set in the town where "our" place is-- now "his" place-- and where our new life together was supposed to start. A phone call that the dog is sick-- again (she hasn't stopped throwing up or wetting the bed since we/he left and the vets can't find anything physically wrong). Something else I have to deal with on my own...
It just gets so overwhelming... But I was just sitting in a cafe thinking simultaneously: he would love this, I wish he were here... And Oh god, the site of his stupid face would probably make *me* vomit. So maybe I miss companionship, security... Not him per se.
And one of the reasons I 180ed was because I do think it is a deal breaker for me. Even if he had been fully remorseful and stuck with R, I can't help but think the loss of innocence I had with my trust and love for him would be so broken that, eventually, I would feel like I had compromised myself to a degree that I would need out. Maybe it would take years, but i bet i would eventually have to admit the foundation is broken for good. And, truth be told, I think even he recognizes that for both of us. He may not have started this as an exit affair, but I think we both realize that between his FOO, PD and abandonment issues and my rescue complex, trying to R could be an unholy mess that drags us both to some ugly places.
So you guys are right, if there aren't kids in the picture and we're now geographically apart (and OW is a coworker, so I basically left them together out there), why choose R? It would be less work for me to just find someone else, in theory. And no one is going to be able to break my heart like this again (only he could). If he keeps doing what he's doing, he doesn't have to quit his job, face his demons directly, face me... And he has a brand new relationship (and family) willing to accept him even though he is the guy who left one fiancé before meeting me and then cheated on me, forcing me to quit a prestigious job, abandoned my family, etc. The answer to my own question is that because you are committed and love each other... But what this experience is teaching me is that, to my dismay and sorrow, that isn't as important to some people. Not even the man you shared your life with all of these years...
[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 4:21 PM, July 9th (Tuesday)]
Even if he had been fully remorseful and stuck with R, I can't help but think the loss of innocence I had with my trust and love for him would be so broken that, eventually, I would feel like I had compromised myself to a degree that I would need out.
Towards the end I found it harder and harder to forgive myself. Once that happened I found I stopped forgiving (rugsweeping) his boundary crossings too. I kept all of them alive in my head - every damaging thing he said/did before and after DD. Anytime I felt wistful or lonely I would sit myself down and force myself to recall those mind-movies.
I once told him he wasn't good enough for me to attempt R with - even infidelity aside. Whilst it was true it took me a few months to realise that *I* was too good to attempt R with him. I was too good to even be married to a guy remotely like that.
I deserve better - so much better. You do too.
Love song on the radio? ..... Oh, look, his favorite whiskey. Oh, look, that new movie is set in the town where "our" place is-- now "his" place-- and where our new life together was supposed to start.
....I was just sitting in a cafe thinking...he would love this, I wish he were here
I just wanted to make a point about what you wrote. I do not know the length of your WH's A, but, apparently it sounds to have gone on for some time. This means that 'they'...your WH & OW...have their own shared memories. Sickening, I know. There are things in his day which remind him of her ~ her favorite song plays; maybe 'their' song even; you prepare dinner and, unbeknownst to you, it is a reminder of her because it happens to be her favorite dish; a commercial on TV is for her perfume; you/he drive past a place he knows is her favorite store, restaurant, etc.; the name of a comedian she adores keeps flashing in advertisement on a billboard; this list is endless when it is a lengthy A or one which began after/during many years of working together. So, one of the lesser discussed things which a BS of an A of length must endure during alleged R...is never knowing if/when your WH is mentally off reminiscing about OW while being physically present with you. You would never know. And when he's driving along and singing passionately to a love song, that uneasy feeling comes over you because you wonder if he is secretly savoring some memory of OW as you sit, invisible, next to him. How would you know? You could ask, but then can you believe him if he answers "of course not!" After all, he's proven himself to be a smooth liar and a master of deception. My point: You are in a good place right now. To go back...would be riddled with all kinds of big and little hurts and challenges that just come with the infidelity/betrayal territory.
The only time I did say something was when she texted him a family photo or herself, her mom and daughter in the middle of the night. I told him that was weird and he dismissed it as a follow up to a casual conversation they had about family portraits at work that day. That was the only time I ever saw her, by the way. I dont remember what she looks like exactly, but I remember looking at the photo and asking him which one was the mother and commenting "well I guess I don't need to be jealous". I get a cookie for that. :)
I tried to put a signature with my details in it, but I must have put it in the wrong place. To answer your question: he tells me the affair started in February, a coupe of weeks after I left town for a couple of months on business. At the time, they knew each other less than a year (he just started the job May 2012). I knew they started a friendship back in the Fall when she filed for divorced and asked people in the office to help her move out. My WS, against my recommendation, was the only one who showed up. After that they would run errands together here and there and that sort of thing. He claims the affair started out of the blue when she kissed him one afternoon and they slept together. I find that hard to believe. It was an EA well before that, at least. That said, I can remember the night he came home after the first time he slept with her, so I believe it was the start of the PA.... I was already out of state working and we were on Skype. He told me he had gone to an afternoon movie at an old movie theater we used to go to all of the time, but when I tried getting in touch with him ater the movie was out, his phone was off. This man is never without his phone, so it didn't make sense. He was already sobbing and hysterical when he got on the computer. That threw me off. I started to confront him about where he was and he got to the point that I thought he was having a nervous breakdown and claimed that he had to turn the phone off because he couldn't look at it anymore. The job wasn't going well. He was stressed beyond belief. And, most of all, he said it was "really hard" for him to be alone there. I started to feel guilty after that because I did choose to take this job that took me away from him. I tried to comfort him... But by the time we hung up I was thinking I might need to come out there or get him a doctor, he was that distraught.
But he carried on the affair from there. Over the weeks that followed he got more distant, answered fewer calls. As I was beginning to prepare to move back out there and now start a job in his office, he wasn't terribly engaged in the conversations about moving trucks, etc. He didn't come to see me on a free weekend in March as we had planned. He finally came out to see me in April, two weeks before I was going to return, and he was distant, aggressive, sweaty, drinking too much. Sex was awful. He went back and slept with her one more time and then, a few days before I was leaving to come "home"-- on my way to pick up the uhaul, in fact-- it all hit the fan.
He offered to take a leave from work and fly out to me to do MC. He broke it off with her. But you could just tell he was doing what he thought he should do. He shouldn't have offered to fly out, he should have been on the next plane. He booked a ticket that he later canceled after we had a bad phone call and I yelled at him. Then he said he wanted me to come home, but get a sublet in case R didn't work. Yadda yadda, he broke NC and slept with her one more time and I figured it out (he was a lousy liar in all of this). I then got the ILYB... stuff. So I quit the job in his office, accepted a position at the place I was working the past few months and got a place of my own out here. Told him NC until the business trip I'm currently on is over...
[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 6:49 PM, July 9th (Tuesday)]
Even after he had said all of the cruel things that I've posted about elsewhere (not being sorry, ILYBNILWY)... He kept sobbing and repeating "I'm not replacing you with her" and that he didn't intend for his not wanting to work on R with me "right now" as a "rejection" (huh?)... It was just that he knows that he can't stop lying to me and can't stop this spiral he seems to be on and he didn't want me to be responsible for "saving" him. Is it all bs? I dunno.
He also said at some point that he might consider dating her formally "6 months from now"... But then he also said he hadn't talked to her in 5+ days at that point and so maybe he would just maintain NC.
Can you see why 180 was easy for me? He was ALL OVER the map. I took myself out of the equation. I didn't want to be their topic of their conversations anymore.
[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 7:01 PM, July 9th (Tuesday)]
He just looked me me like a deer in headlights.
I've read some of your posts and a lot of your story rings true for me. My WS was cold and distant during his A too. Lots of red flags I didn't pick up on. No remorse. He went back to sleep with her one last time too. I guess a lot of these Waywards follow the same blueprint from the WS handbook. Everyone was blindsided by this. He didn't just turn on me, but my whole family too. Even the dogs. And our first dog was like our first born. They were BFFs and his precious buddy, but now it's like he's turned on all of us. Every now and then we would see a bright spot but he's never really come back and my being here and his knowing I'm here in this house with the baby and dogs is like he put a pause button on his former life. This is part of the reason I need to get away from him and this house.
I wish I had your balls of Steele. I know mine are in here somewhere. I love my baby and wouldn't trade having him for the world, in fact my DS has kept me sane through all this. But I've said repeatedly that if I didn't have DS that I would have turned around and walked away since day 1.
Keep doing what you are doing. In fact, I hope you rub some off on me. I've never been good at breakups....and I've always been the one to hang on too long. This one is a real doozy. I'm glad I'm only 35 though...and attractive/smart/fun. You should see the OW. She looks like a prostitute... The crack head kind...not even pretty woman. I know in my heart I'll have the last laugh.
To this day he still has her picture (the dog's) as his FB profile.
For her part, she peed on him three times the last time he came to see us. She never does that. I gave her extra bacon after DDay because I think she was trying to tell me something!
Thank you for saying that I'm an inspiration of some kind! I feel so far from it, but that makes me feel stronger!
He has been watching redhead specific porn for years.
He too was cold and distant for many years.
I smelled another woman in his groin more times than I care to remember.
He told me OWUmpteen was a fucked up little bunny with her BF, a married guy and another guy all on the hook at the same time. I asked why she would tell her boss' boss these things. Good god.
It was all in my head, apparently.
In False R I was out buying clothes and he kept suggesting weird buttoned-up-to-the-collar tops that were see-through - I have always been a v-neck girl. See through daywear makes me want to vomit. When I found out he was with OWUmpteen I realised she wears these clothes, she dyes her hair red, she started working with him just after our first child was born.
She was not the only OW nor was she the first. She's just the one broken enough to have repeated it and tolerated his fucked-up ness.
I feel sick when I think of all of it. It makes me so mad and sad. So very unnecessary. I didn't deserve any of it. I was his wife, the mother of his children, I was supportive and loving.
But then I remember I was supposed to trust him. None of this is about me.
He didn't really fool me - he isn't that smart. I participated and gaslighted the fuck out of myself. He used my love and trust against me - it is what manipulators do.
That I let him is my brokenness which I need to deal with.
[This message edited by StrongButBroken at 12:16 AM, July 10th (Wednesday)]
I think I totally gaslighted myself, too. I mean, I must have. I'm only just getting to that in IC.
But I'm also realizing through SI (particularly in reading the WS forum) that I may have unwittingly set up some of my own demise. WS was a guy's guy and didn't do emotions. If I didn't like his tone of voice I was being emotional and not rational. If I was having a problem with a girlfriend, he would listen but never offer any advice. So over the years I learned to just skip it when it came to that stuff. I relied on my best friends (one of them, yes, an ex I split up with in college-- but it was always platonic). And I stopped confronting him when he said stuff sarcastically or in a "tone". I accepted that was just the way he talked and he didn't mean anything by it. Given this, I really shouldn't be surprised that he raged at me the way he did during the breakup. Over time I taught him he could say whatever the hell he wanted to me. He had just never been vicious before.
So, I need to learn to follow through on something if it bothers me. The first time he ignored my feelings and wasn't man enough to apologize and be accountable-- even if it was for something as seemingly minor as a hurtful "tone"-- I probably should have pushed that to see what his character really was.
Side note: the reason he was getting in trouble at work this year was because he was talking to female colleagues in the same way. Two of them reported him within 12 mos. One now won't even show up for scheduled meetings with him. OW was the only one who rolled with his way of interacting with people. He said he liked her because she was sarcastic like him.
I'm really going to have to look back to figure out for myself whether sarcastic and witty was a code in our relationship for emotionally shallow, conflict avoidant and mean spirited.