I was stunned. A whole year later and she still thinks he was "sweet". I pushed back my rage and calmly asked her what made him "sweet". She said she didn't know. I asked her for an example. "I don't remember."
I was furious. I told her I was upset and I took a walk. I tried to broach the subject again hours later. Again she said he was sweet. I told her how hurt that made me to hear her still speak so affectionately of him a while year later, and how "I don't know" feels dishonest. She backtracks and says it was how she felt "at the time". I called it bullshit. She accused me of self pity.
Another long night on the coach. Still hurt and angry. I feel she will never be able to let go of him.
She accused me of self pity.
I think that is a clear indication of why she still thinks he's sweet. She doesn't give a shit about you.
me (WW/BS): 48
4 kiddos in mid 20's
The conditions we face do not define us. They remind us of who we are and who we want to be.
By the way, make her sleep on the couch.
Completely agree with above posters.
By a year later, WS should be seeing things differently.
But also, doing any kind of direct comparison is dangerous in my opinion. Many waywards do not feel like they are choosing one person over another during the affair, although that is how it feels to us, obviously. Just an alcoholic doesn't feel like they are choosing booze over people, the waywards often are choosing "high of AP or no high" rather than between you and them.
I edit, therefore I am.
Oh, yea? How many "good" people have sex with someone's husband on their wife's bed? How hard is it to be "nice" to someone when you don't live with them, discuss bills, broken appliances, IRS audits, chores, step-children, jobs, etc.?
The waywards have the mind of a child.
[This message edited by Yakamishi at 12:09 PM, September 20th (Friday)]
@5454, admittedly she's done some amazing work in this area. She drinks 1 or 2 nights a week, and when she does its 3-4 bets, or 2-3 glasses of wine. While its not total sobriety, is a major step as her head is alot clearer.
That said, this notion of any remaining positive feelings for OM in the least kills me. She says she "despises" him. Id rather she was ambivalent. One would think if she harbors that kind of emotion, it must be built on some sort of attachment or fondness. And that perhaps she resents the loss of the AP.
I agree 100% that any lingering feelings of fondness a year our is not ok. At all. I will say though that once my husband got to hating her, he was pretty good at it. It may have taken him longer than a year to get to indifference. Dunno. Can't remember. Terribly helpful, yes? Sorry. I just am not sure the 1 year on that is a hard line.
I'm sorry you had to hear something like that from her, being this far out. That just sucks.
[This message edited by LosferWords at 12:33 PM, September 20th (Friday)]
If she says "I don't know" and saying "what I felt at the time" then she's purely relying on emotions still and I think Rockymtn is right and there's still fog.
We don't necessarily want our FWS to "hate" the AP. We want them to be indifferent to them. It doesn't seem like she is. The only correct answer to that question is along the lines of "because I was broken", "because I wasn't thinking at all", etc. A truly remorseful spouse says these things and MEANS them. But saying as the reason why they pretty much cheated is because the other person was sweet... puts the blame on the other person instead of owning up to their screw-up.
I hope it made sense.
We're here for you.
True love is harder to come by than soul mates. True love requires work.
Ignorance can be cured with knowledge. There is no cure for being an idiot.
My FWH doesn't bad mouth the OW per se, beyond saying she was as fucked up as he was and made herself available, went over the top with the adulation. But he has NO good memories of her or the A. He says that he can't understand how he could have made such a horrible choice and has not one nice thing to say about her. Wishes he had never met her.
Don't know how I would handle anything else!
I believe most WS say things like this regarding their AP for two main reasons.
First, the fog and high from the A lingers past the NC date...and real emotions are still in play. These emotions are based on lies and false facts...but the emotions are real. Make sense?
Second, once that reason passes I believe the human mind continues this mode of operation to protect itself...afterall, if they actually see the AP in the light it truly belongs in...it hurts like hell! "I did this?!?!? For that?!?!? Who the hell am I anyway?!?!?" sort of thing must go through their mind.
So it is a process...just like what BS go through. It is painful and can be really slow....
Back to the year out thing....
What we all experience is NOT unique....but how we react and process through it occurs in its "unique" timeline. It sounds as if your wife has alcohol issues....probably contributes to the delay in "getting it"
In other cases, trickle truthing adds considerable time to "getting it".
I see posts on here where BS spouses don't get trickle truthed, don't have WS with other handicapps...and those folks time line moves faster.
ALSO....check up what she is answering. She MAY be hearing the question "Why did you choose him over me AT THAT TIME?" instead of the question "Why did you choose him over me?".
I have made false assumptions...thinking my wife was answering one question, all the while she answered a very different question.
Regardless...I feel your pain. I hate this too.
Hang in there.
God be with us all.
OM was "sweet"...
So is antifreeze, but I don't drink it.
Lots of people are sweet. She needs to dig deeper, deeper to the ugly part where she realizes and can admit to not just you, but to herself that she made a choice to have an affair due to her own fuckedupness, and the reason she chose him (as well as why he chose her) is because he validated, supported, shared in and encouraged that choice. Not because he was sweet.
When my WH says similar things about his OW, it pierces my heart. In my mind, there is nothing positive to say about the OW. Ever. But then that leads me to thinking about my own, personal wayward. He was WAY messed up. But I still love him. The fact that he made such a HUGE error doesn't change the fact that he's brilliant or funny or charming. If his OW told her BH that my husband was the smartest man she'd ever met, it would be true. In OM's mind, my husband would still be a jerk and a philanderer. But the fact remains that he's a genius.
My view of OW is similarly one-dimensional. All I can think of to call her are derogatory names that wouldn't be allowed in this forum. What I'm trying to say is that, however misguided and unremorseful and selfish the OM might be, "sweet" might still be an accurate description of him. Not only that, but what kind of an answer were you expecting? What answer would be acceptable?
Another thought. I read a marriage book (all I've done for the past year) that used the phrase "love bank." The OM deposited tokens into your wife's love bank on a regular basis. He may have withdrawn, too, but that's unlikely. He probably never refused to take out the garbage, never disciplined her children different from how she'd want it, never sat and watched TV all night. They had their own little fantasy going on. The book's author contends that when an A ends--especially if there's NC established--everything ugly that happens is within the M itself. Your being hurt drains your love bank. Her being upset drains your love bank. But the OM is frozen. Static. He may not be depositing into the love bank any more, but he's not withdrawing, either. It's not real and it won't last, but it is a good analogy to describe what your wife is talking about when she calls the OM sweet.
My WH is NEVER going to hate his OW like I do. The glow is off, though. She is no longer on a pedestal. She finally has flaws. But he'll never see her as the _______ and __________ and _________ that I see her as. Does that make sense? He chose her over me because he was vulnerable, because we weren't caring for each other the way we should have, because (mostly) he's a sex addict, because she spoke "math" with him, because he was weak, because she stroked his self-esteem. She took advantage of that because she, too, was in a bad spot in her marriage. And it spiraled out of control from there.
If he, as the OM, isn't allowed to be "sweet" because he's an adulterer, then she also is not allowed to be "sweet" or "pretty" or "generous" because she was unfaithful, too. She can't desecrate his character without destroying her own. There was a demon inside her that has to be exorcised, but if she herself is the demon, then why try?
I, too, thought my OM was "sweet" at one time. Why? Because he paid attention to a no-account loser like me. My view of myself was such that a bit more tarnish or graffiti wasn't going to make much of a difference in that view so I could further deface it with little hesitation. Yes, I was majorly screwed up. Yes, I had all these issues. Yes, I was the person who did this to my BH.
Yakashima's WW isn't suffering from the I don't know's and I don't remember's, she's suffering from the I don't want to accept's. Until she reaches acceptance, she'll view the OM as "sweet" to some extent.
The waywards that get it know they were as bad as (if not worse) than the AP. They defaced that image of themselves to find what's *really* underneath it. And mostly (IMO) it's a pretty (if not beautiful) image that just needs restored to its former glory.
All affairs are variations on a theme. No one has 'Beethoven's 5th' to everyone else's 'Chopsticks'.