R is about healing the marriage, right? In the beginning, he works on him, I work on me, then we come together in R to work on the marriage (please correct me if I have that wrong).
Is there a process to this? I was thinking of sitting him down and telling him how great he's been doing (we still have our moments, but that's why I haven't considered R yet). He's NC, remorseful, transparent (he actually asked my permission today to bring his phone to the bathroom so he could play Candy Crush ). I still don't trust him, but if I wait for that before we start R, we'll never get there, will we? On the other hand, he's given me no reason not to believe he's sincere.
Crap, I think I went off on a tangent. I was trying to figure out if there's a process. Do I sit with him and discuss the problems (real and potential) in our marriage? Then we work on a plan for repair/ prevention? I just want to make sure I do this right. We're doing it alone (no IC/MC - you can lecture me all you want, it's the path we've chosen), so it's probably going to be harder. But we're both committed and I, at least, want to give it my all.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions, advice (and yes, even lectures)!
married 2y, together 2.5y
1 beautiful daughter, 23m
"Someday soon, I'm going to put my life together; Win or lose, I'm starting over again."
WH's complete and total remorse has also been vital to our R process. Him telling (and showing) me in different ways, all the time, that he is truly sorry for what he's put us through has made me feel like he honestly wants us to work out, and he'll never put us in jeopardy like that again.
We're working on it, and today I feel hopeful for our future together.
We were having marital problems before the A, which we went to counseling for. Counseling wasn't for us, but before the end of our last session I made him promise to talk to me if he had a problem. Not keep it inside, building contempt and resentment. He said he would. Then the A, which, by my own timeline, began about a week-and-a-half after he said he was "feeling much better" about us. When I asked him what happened in that week-and-a-half, and why didn't he say something to me, he answered "You went back to being the person you promised not to be anymore, and I was just done discussing it. It never got me anywhere."
This was just after d-day, and I know he was making excuses. Blame-shifting and gaslighting like a champ. I think we are getting better, but I can't make him tell me things. I guess that's why I want to set aside some time for us to sit down and specifically discuss the issues.
Also, we just bought a new truck, so money's about to get tighter. But I was thinking about setting aside some time each week (or month, if that would be more reasonable) for dates. I don't necessarily feel like our daughter has "come between us", but we very rarely have time without her. It certainly couldn't hurt to have a little "grown-up" time without her...?
Trust takes a looong time to rebuild. I'm 31 months out and still don't fully trust my W - and our MC says I shouldn't trust her yet.
Speaking as an H/lover who became a father, I guarantee your kid comes between you in some ways. (For me, our son brought us together is some ways, too, so it's not all downside.)
Date nights are a good idea. They really help keep the connection going, especially when a kid takes so much of your energy. You might try to find or setup a baby-sitting co-op, which really cuts the cost of going out, if that's a problem. At the same time, there are lots of cheap things to do - other than baby-sitting - that are fun.
Healing the marriage is paramount to R....without that goal even trying to get to R is redundant.
Asking permission to do something is one way to showing you are remorseful but it can also be a way of just making sure he doesn't have to deal with your anger. Those two things are very different. Avoiding reactions does NOTHING to help this get better, it just says I don't want any more grief. My H knows that his cell phone triggers me often. Just the sound of it can send me into dispare. He asks often or explains why he needed to use his phone or who it was that sent him an email or text but he also explains that he understands how his phone can upset me and he doesn't want to do that anymore. Has your WH ever verbally taken account of how his past behaviours (ie. secrative cell phone use) have hurt you, that he sees how much using his phone hurts you? Have you ever been able to tell him how his past behaviours weren't so trasparant, that you suspected soemthing because he was on his phone all the time???
It is through the exchange of these feelings that you will move beyond the stuck spot you are in. As well, if your feelings cause your hubby to be defensive I think you have your answer as to the honest intentions of his permission seeking. Guilty people have lots to hide....truly remosreful people don't want to hide a single thing because they know the damage that is done when it is preceieved incorrectly.
In our situation, exspressions of our feelings have opened huge doors to improving the way we communicate with each other. Feelings do not accuse, they explain something about how you feel in regard to someone elses actions.
Through thick and thin we will survive but he gets only one shot at it!
Has your WH ever verbally taken account of how his past behaviours (ie. secrative cell phone use) have hurt you, that he sees how much using his phone hurts you? Have you ever been able to tell him how his past behaviours weren't so trasparant, that you suspected soemthing because he was on his phone all the time???
Yes. And yes.
My comments weren't well-received on d-day, but these days he does seem to "get it." He understands why I hate his phone and why I don't want him to have it when he's in the restroom. He makes a very conscious effort not to touch it unless he has to, and usually explains what he's doing with it without me asking ("my app has an update," "I think I'll play Candy Crush," etc). and he allows me to sit next to him and watch. Things have resumed to they way they were before the A (with the exception of bringing the phone to the bathroom) - the phone is unlocked all the time, it sits on his desk or bedside table unless he needs it, and he uses it openly in my presence.
He doesn't ever seem worried that I will get angry, although I know he is always on the lookout for my sadness. He says my sadness is painful for him - I think it needs to be this way for a while, even during R. Am I wrong?