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Divorce/Separation Post Reply     Print Topic    
User Topic: "Therapeutic" separation?
heartbroken_kk
♀ Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 2:33 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Are you in IC to work on your issues?


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
gonnabe2016
♀ Member
Member # 34823
Default  Posted: 2:47 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

This whole "controlling" thing really comes across as deflection to me.

IMO, if you were truly a controlling-type person, then that trait would have been there all along and not have just popped up in the past few years. And also, IMO, "controlling"-type behavior that DOES just pop up generally comes about as a 'reaction' to situational life-stuff. You know, like, say that you begin to notice that your spouse drinks too much when out with friends. You bring it up because it is a concern and becoming an issue for you. However, the spouse just blows you off and carries on. And your response is to attempt to exert more 'control' over the situation, kwim? So I wonder if you subconsciously started noticing your WW's poor boundaries or <something>....and thus, the controlling behaviors crept in.

I think the request for a therapeutic separation because she wants to get on 'equal' footing in the relationship is baloney. If you are agreeing to work on this supposed-control issue, then if you begin to exhibit that behavior.....she should be able to point it out to you when it occurs. Why is all of the upheaval of a separation necessary?

Idk, dude. It seems as if you all are focused on the paper-cut and ignoring the spurting artery.......


"Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive." - Sir Walter Scott

In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.


Posts: 7695 | Registered: Feb 2012 | From: Midwest
Missymomma
♀ Member
Member # 36988
Default  Posted: 3:34 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

We had a short separation. The part that is concerning is that it is being initiated by the cheating spouse. That sends up red flags here on SI. We separated because I couldn't stand to look at him or be around him for a while. I wanted to have space of my own to heal. We quickly realized that the separation was going to lead to divorce if we didn't move back in together. My WH was begging to come home. So one betrayed spouse to another, don't you feel rejected by the fact that your WW wants to move out on top of having cheated on you? I know I felt rejected whenever my WH's instinct was to flee, in the beginning. A remorseful WS wants to stay and fight for their marriage.


DDay - 6/15/11
R started - 7/1/11
False Discl- 9/27/12
Real Discl - 2/12/13
Poly - 3/1/13 Pass!
Me - BS (46)
WH - 52 (SA, NA, WA)
Kids: 2 littles and 1 grown
The road to recovery is long and hard. Some days I am up for it and others not!

Posts: 1084 | Registered: Sep 2012 | From: Texas
Nature_Girl
♀ Member
Member # 32554
Default  Posted: 3:45 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I was wanting to explore a therapeutic separation with my WS. I'd researched how to make one work (having our IC oversee the process), had set goals I thought could be accomplished during our time apart, and so forth.

WS would not entertain the thought. I was greatly disappointed, and that's when I realized that I really truly didn't want to live with him at all anymore. I wanted to be away from him. This greatly disturbed me. I continued to push the MC, however, and continued onwards with the ol' college try to make the marriage work.

I think for a very few couples therapeutic separation can work. It's certainly worth exploring.


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: 9283 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: USA
myperfectlife
♀ Member
Member # 39801
Default  Posted: 4:10 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Arable Sands,
I get where you are coming from.
This is like a "reset" for both of you to fix your issues.
I am S right now and although my WS is remorseful, I did not want to attempt R while moving back in with him. Because MY controlling behaviour would continue. Also, when I am not controlling, he flounders.
That is something he has to fix on his own-get his head out of his ass and grow up.
I agree that it would be more difficult for a conflict avoidant person to "grow up" with a controlling person hovering over them.
This is why I stopped thinking about my marriage and started thinking about myself.
There are several possible outcomes to this, however and you should be prepared.
It's possible that it will take longer than you expected, that she may actually like the more improved "her", and that the improved her doesn't need you anymore.
She may be committed now, but there's not guarantee that won't change.
I know your situation is different than others, but I will also say that when I did leave to give my WS room to "Grow" and focus on himself, he couldn't handle being alone and took the affair to the next level.
This is a common dynamic in overworking/underworking relationships.
If she can't handle being alone/working on HERSELF then she has nothing to bring back to the marriage.
Maybe she would not stay with OM...maybe she would find someone else who is not you or them.
Just my opinion.


I cannot be responsible for another's personal growth.
DDay#1 of a "cheatillion" 4/1/13
Divorce final 11/04/13

Posts: 452 | Registered: Jul 2013
ladies_first
♀ Member
Member # 24643
Default  Posted: 4:19 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Please raise the issue of "Double Bind" with MC and WW.

If your needs aren't being met, then will you feel safe communicating your needs to your absent wife without being labeled "controlling"?

Her phone and email will remain open to me, and she'll keep me informed as to where she is and when.
Get this in writing. Because if transparency becomes cloudy, then WW will likely label checking of phone her records, keylogging computer access, GPS tracking and personal accountability as "controlling behaviors."

[This message edited by ladies_first at 4:26 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]


"We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us." ~J. Campbell
"In the final analysis, it is your own attitude that will make or break you, not what has happened to you." ~D. Galloway

Posts: 2143 | Registered: Jun 2009
Abbondad
♂ Member
Member # 37898
Default  Posted: 4:50 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hi, Arable,

Just wanted to jump in here, as I have been following your posts and know all too well the pain and confusion you are in. I am not without them, but I am much farther along. (Not in the direction I'd hoped for, but it is what it is.)

I know that it can be frustrating to read all the responses that seem to negate or dismiss your convictions, in this case as they relate to your separation. And I don't want to come across as some guy in a support group shaking his head and smiling condescendingly, implicitly conveying, "I was once like you...And now I see the light. You will too..."

All I can do is offer my experience with separation. We didn't call it "therapeutic" but "controlled." It came out to the same thing, unfortunately--a way for my WW to continue her affair without my interference.

She also called me "controlling." And looking back, I guess I was controlling in some ways prior to the affair. But when she commenced her affair, I sure as hell ratcheted up my "controlling" behavior, since I did not want my wife to....have an affair.

Also thrown at me were words like "erratic" and "full of rage." Again, yes and yes. I was. Because....my wife was having an affair.

So the first time she wanted a separation, it pained me, but she convinced me (since I wanted R so badly) that this would enable her to "find herself," "grow," and "heal," in her words.

Pure and simple, it enabled her to deepen her affair.

Then after around three months of sheer hell knowing she was cake-eating and I was enabling it, she informed me that she had had an "epiphany" about us and moved back in, with assurances to me and our children that she would never leave again. When I humbly, wimpily asked her if she'd gone NC with the AP, she told me "it is a process." Again, I accepted this because I wanted R so very badly. My world had fallen apart, and here was a possibility that time and reality would be reversed. That she had changed.

Well, she tried to break it off, and never could. When I recommenced my "controlling" ways and "raged" (cuz...she lied), she moved out again, this time saying the situation was "too volatile" and she needed to "find a path back." That path back apparently was diving back into the affair beyond my prying eyes.

As she continued her affair, we attended MC and IC. I still attend. She does not.

We are now divorcing.

I know this might anger you, but as so many here will say, a WS who truly wants reconciliation will not want to leave you. Quite the opposite. When I was in your situation, I scoured the Internet Googling things like "successful separation," "separation saved my marriage," etc. I loved my wife so much and desperately wanted to prevent the utter destruction of our family. Alas, it could not be prevented.

Clearly I hold a dim view of separation as a means to reconciliation. It just doesn't appear logical to me. And in the context of infidelity, I am extremely cynical.

And another SI cliche that truly irked me at the time was this: "You say your situation is different; your WS is different. It isn't. She isn't." I just could not internalize this. I KNEW my situation was like none other. I KNEW my wife and I loved each other like nobody else on the site. Their responses scared me, to be honest.

Please take this as it's intended--not as a scoffing at your situation or your convictions, but as a caring "heads up" from someone who, like you, traveled through pain I never imagined I was capable of.

I hope so much that your separation works out and indeed becomes the "path" back. Truly I do.

But please listen to everyone with an open mind. Everyone cares and empathizes.

All the best to you.

[This message edited by Abbondad at 4:51 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]


Divorced April Fool's Day 2014

Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
-Dune


Posts: 1571 | Registered: Dec 2012
heartbroken_kk
♀ Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 5:21 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

One other think I wanted to mention.... "controlling" is a barb that was thrown at me by my WH.

Um, OK. So, what exactly was I trying to control?

How about our budget? The timeliness of paying bills and debts? The cleanliness (slovenliness) of our house? The stupendous amount of alcohol consumed, every. single. day? My weight, and the amount of crap food he insisted on bringing into the house? Our sex life getting boring, while he is off in the back room jerking off to porn on the internet? Him having secret visits with his x-girlfriend at work, when I knew he had fucked her while we were dating (oh, I mean, who had "seduced" him)?

I sure did exhibit controlling behaviors for perfectly rational reasons. I wanted to establish some savings (is this so unreasonable?). I wanted to clean up our credit rating. I wanted to lose some weight and had difficulty with willpower around junk food I loved. I didn't want him to die from alcoholism, like his two older brothers did. I didn't want to get ANOTHER STD when he cheated on me with his x-girlfriend again. I wanted a healthy sex-life with my husband. I wanted a house that didn't have multiple spiders in every corner and piles of dead flies under the windows.

Yeah. Stuff like that, it's just SO UNREASONABLE that I wanted to control things in my life that just weren't OK.

As I went through therapy to deal with the aftermath of all the crap that came with WH's affairs, I learned a lot about Passive-aggressive and manipulative behavior, and co-dependency and controlling behavior.

Controlling behavior is something that can occur when someone is struggling with a passive-aggressive partner. WH is passive. He doesn't do things, that a healthy person does do. He refuses to stop doing things that are unhealthy. He drags his feet, whines and complains, and blames me for the problems he causes. In fact, his passive-aggressiveness is the way that HE subversively controls others. It just isn't out there in the open, like my behavior is. It's cloaked. It's manipulative. It's crazy-making. And it makes you doubt yourself and think that YOU are the PROBLEM.

I'm going to go to the I Can Relate forum and bump the thread on Passive-Aggressive behavior. I encourage you to read through it.

I think it's all well and good to own your own shit, so to speak. But be careful. Some of that shit may have been put there by your WW, while she's blaming you for it.


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
ArableSands
♂ Member
Member # 39830
Default  Posted: 6:36 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thank you for some of the useful wisdom offered.

The controlling behaviour isn't BS. We had a particularly horrific 7 years, and I coped with the aftermath by not coping. I became controlling. For the last 4 years I treated my wife's opinion as completely secondary in nearly all matters.

I've already done work on my controlling and I think I've come a long way. I have further to go.

My wife has been wanting to get her own space since early this year, months before her cheating started. As far as separating to continue cheating, that is about as likely as a turtle's chance in Death Valley.

I have other suspicions, but none around the smoking remains of her betrayal continuing.


Posts: 224 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: Vancouver, Canada
solus sto
♀ Member
Member # 30989
Default  Posted: 7:04 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

"Therapeutic separation," when proposed by the WS, is almost invariably an oxymoron.

I'm sorry, AS. Your WW is not remorseful, and she's not out of her affair--at least, not in her head.

As agonizing as it is to be with a WS in withdrawal, it's even worse to be with one who's in a constant low-level withdrawal caused by a refusal to make a clean break with NC. (It's like quitting smoking. You can taper down, but if you do that, you're always in a state of low-level withdrawal; if you quit cold turkey,it sucks---but for a shorter time, because the drug is GONE, out of your system.)

I know you had a couple of weeks during which your wife, in her panic and ...whatever... seemed to be doing the "right things."

That's not unusual. It's also not unusual for this honeymoon period to end---and for the WS to come up with all kinds of bargaining garbage---like "therapeutic separations."

Therapeutic separation can work. It can work when there is a remorseful, empathic WS who wants to help the BS heal by removing him/herself as the primary trigger. It is usually very well-structured, and guided by a therapist who is very well-versed in the goals of therapeutic separation.

It is NOT a time to "get a breather." It is a time during which the marriage is intensely worked upon---and both partners also work HARD on their own issues and healing.

Is that what your wife has in mind? Or does she just want to eat some cake?

There's no such thing as creating "equal footing" post d-day.

That is a fantasy.

If her affair didn't freaking level the playing field, what the hell will? So you were "controlling." Seems to me that having an affair more than compensates, if we're playing tit-for-tat.

Thing is, there's no such thing as "fair" or "even" or "level" in a marriage.

It's not a freaking competition. It's a MARRIAGE.

[This message edited by solus sto at 7:07 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]


BS-me, 52
WH (Trac-fone), 52, PD
2 kids-DD25, DS18
multiple d-days
DIVORCING
Alone, most strangely, I live on~Rupert Brooke

Posts: 8325 | Registered: Jan 2011 | From: midwest
ArableSands
♂ Member
Member # 39830
Default  Posted: 7:19 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I give up. I'm so SO tired of repeating facts and evidence over and over. Facts I've verified. Evidence I've seen. I get that most cheating fits under the bell curve here at SI. What others aren't seeing is that occasionally, once in a blue fucking moon, there is an outlier. I didn't believe my situation was an outlier at first. It took evidence to prove that. I verified her story. I went back to all of the major and minor points in the timeline and they check out to three nines.

Is she remorseful? Yes. She doesn't show her remorse the way so many here insist it has to be shown. She's uninterested in continuing her cheating because of a dozen reasons I refuse to go over here. Am I still suspicious and raw? Yes, fuck, yes. Do I think another betrayal is on the horizon? No, not even if she moves to an apartment down the street, which is what we're considering if we got that route.

We'll talk to the MC in a few weeks about this subject. I'll do myself a favour and not ask here about this again.

Thanks for the effort put forth.


Posts: 224 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: Vancouver, Canada
devistatedmom
♀ Member
Member # 24961
Default  Posted: 7:44 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

AS, you know, I didn't answer on your thread at all, but read every post. I don't get why you are so mad at people, that are trying to answer the question you asked. No, we don't know all the facts, yes, people are giving you advice on what they have seen and had happened to them. Yes, there is always a possibility that what someone says doesn't pertain to your WS, but geez, don't get mad at people because they don't say exactly what you want, when you asked the question.

Good luck.


BS(me) 46, Two wonderful teens.
He is no longer my best friend. Repeat until it sticks.

WH says marriage is over: May 15, 2009.
EA#2 July 20, 2009. Legally sep: Aug 16, 2009. DIVORCED!!!! Signed Nov 23, final Dec 24, 2010, adultery listed.


Posts: 5371 | Registered: Jul 2009 | From: Canada
Maxiom
♂ Member
Member # 26001
Default  Posted: 7:47 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

In the 4 years I have followed various stories on this site. 9 out of 10 times, separation leads to divorce, regardless of the initial intent.

What I see playing out here is a strong case of truth bias. Search the term, really and totaly investigate whether or not it applies to you in your situation.

Almost every single instance where a WS has requested separation, it is to further engage in WS behaviour. Whether or not it is with the same AP.


Me: FBS/WS 41
Her FWS/BS 41
My DDay - March 10, 2007 Whole Truth - May 2007
Her DDay - March 2, 2011
True NC March 3, 2011

Posts: 453 | Registered: Oct 2009 | From: Canada
FaithFool
♀ Member
Member # 20150
Default  Posted: 7:56 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hey A.S., I really hope you can make this work for both of you and that you post back here in a few months to tell us about your success story.

It will be refreshing to hear.


DDay: June 15, 2008
Mistakenly married Mr. Superfreak
20 years of OWs, WTF?
Divorced Dec 26, 2011
"Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget
to sing in the lifeboats". -- Voltaire

Posts: 17144 | Registered: Jul 2008 | From: Canada
ArableSands
♂ Member
Member # 39830
Default  Posted: 7:59 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

devistatedmom

I'm just tired. The whole surviving the betrayal aside, when I present verified facts I'm told that I should re-think them because the collective experience is that its not how it goes. As Maxiom wrote, 9 out of 10 separations led to divorce. Which also argues that 1 in 10 do not. Folks here are not allowing for that 1 in 10.

I'm clear on truth bias. For the seven-hundredth time, I've verified the story. And Im tired of saying that.


Posts: 224 | Registered: Jul 2013 | From: Vancouver, Canada
ladies_first
♀ Member
Member # 24643
Default  Posted: 8:06 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I have other suspicions, but none around the smoking remains of her betrayal continuing.

Would you feel safe here spelling out your other suspicions?

[This message edited by ladies_first at 8:06 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]


"We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us." ~J. Campbell
"In the final analysis, it is your own attitude that will make or break you, not what has happened to you." ~D. Galloway

Posts: 2143 | Registered: Jun 2009
myperfectlife
♀ Member
Member # 39801
Default  Posted: 8:11 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Arable Sands,
I truly hope that this is exactly what you two need to put things back together. I think the actual stats are more like 60% of separated couples divorce, or something along those lines.
I looked into all that before I separated, but hoped that I would be in the 40%. That was BEFORE I knew about the affair, so you are ahead of me on that at least :-)
I do believe that working on R separately may work for some people. It is the only way I would have worked on R for several months in my situation because I didn't feel like going back home was a fix for anything. Too many issues for WS to fix with me around enabling him.
Definitely get the MC involved and set up your boundaries and guidelines. If she is truly remorseful and willing to do the hard work, and you are willing to give her that space, then anything is possible.


I cannot be responsible for another's personal growth.
DDay#1 of a "cheatillion" 4/1/13
Divorce final 11/04/13

Posts: 452 | Registered: Jul 2013
Maxiom
♂ Member
Member # 26001
Default  Posted: 8:23 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I assume this is verified by a source other than from your wife or her AP? BTW.. thrid party correspondence with friend or family doesn't count because they will lie to them too.

9 in 10 is being liberal, but in those 1 in 10 cases where separation worked it was always initiated by the BS.. usually with the WS going along extremely reluctantly.

You play poker? Would you bet it all on those odds?


Me: FBS/WS 41
Her FWS/BS 41
My DDay - March 10, 2007 Whole Truth - May 2007
Her DDay - March 2, 2011
True NC March 3, 2011

Posts: 453 | Registered: Oct 2009 | From: Canada
caregiver9000
♀ Member
Member # 28622
Default  Posted: 8:28 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I can think of an example that doesn't fall under the bell curve of infidelity. Perhaps your wife attempted what is called an exit affair. You said she tried to leave you multiple times before she cheated. Then she cheated. If the action was aimed at achieving separation and not a "lurve" fog induced infatuation lying to cover up so they can be together on the sly affair, then the separation may be just what it appears to be: separation.

What it means for your marriage would be anyone's guess.


Me: 43, independent, happy, despite co-parenting with a lower muppet
FT "Stretch" (and Skew!) ;)
DS 13 DS 10
S 5/2010
D 12/2012

Posts: 5595 | Registered: May 2010 | From: a better place
Grace and Flowers
♀ Member
Member # 34431
Default  Posted: 8:34 PM, August 4th (Sunday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hey, AS,
One thing to remember....
You started this thread with three sentences. For many of us, that's all we know about you. You keep saying that you're repeating verifiable facts, over and over, but I don't see that anywhere here. Or on your profile, which I did take the time to look at, once you got your dander up.

Most of us here do not have the luxury of enough time to go back and read every single post made by someone in OTHER threads.

Seems to me you are getting awfully snippy with people who are just trying to answer the questions you posted when you started this thread. You seem angry that we don't all know your COMPLETE story.

Just wanted to remind you to bear that in mind. And remember...you DID ask a QUESTION. Implying that you were looking for people's opinions/experiences. If you wanted only ONE answer to that question, you should have just made a statement.

I'm in no way saying you have to agree with anyone's responses. But to get so irate at the most supportive, empathetic community on the Internet is....sad.

No matter whether you agree with the replies, everyone here, in my experience, posts from a place of concern and a genuine desire to help.

[This message edited by SadMad2012 at 8:40 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]


I'm Happy, not Sad!

Posts: 1149 | Registered: Jan 2012 | From: US
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