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Madhatters Only Thread

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madhattermarilyn posted 11/9/2017 07:03 AM

As my name shows...I am a mad hatter too. I can relate most to this gentleman:

Talking with my therapist, we came to the conclusion that my personality type would most likely be unable to fully begin healing until I was able to get some sense of justice. I don't know what is worse, having involved myself with my AP in a PA, or feeling better about my overall situation having done so.

That's me in a nutshell...I wouldn't be able to regain sanity, let alone heal, much less R, until I felt even. I don't know who your therapist is, but he or she sure sounds better than the ones I saw. They all talked me out of revenge hookups. Said I'd "feel really bad" about it (no I didn't, especially after my WH/MH finally confessed after such long limbo). Said there were other ways for me to rebuild my self esteem. They didn't know me like I know myself. I don't tick like a normal person.

Lol I also find it a laughable pet peeve when people say "remember your morals." How condescending. They're telling ME what my morals should be. Maybe that's their morals, but not mine. Maybe they're grossed out by the idea of having a ONS, whereas I've had plenty in the past and find them exciting fun. That's like telling an atheist to "remember his morals" and go to church. An atheist would laugh in your face. I don't mean the "remember your morals" argument just about infidelity payback situations, but in general. When I was a teen and telling friends about a guy I was dating, one guy interjected, "dont have sex now. Remember your morals." He wasn't joking either! Abstaining from sex was the last thing on my eager virgin teenage mind at the time lol.

[This message edited by madhattermarilyn at 7:10 AM, November 9th (Thursday)]

madhattermarilyn posted 11/10/2017 07:34 AM


[This message edited by madhattermarilyn at 7:36 AM, November 10th (Friday)]

devastated43 posted 11/20/2017 16:38 PM

Sorry, I chose not to read all 41 pages of this thread but I have a questions:

Regarding Revenge Affair:

I know it's ill advised. I know all IC and definitely MCs would advice against it. But didn't the entire rejection you felt from your WW/WH trigger the thought that "I'm desirable too," "I'm handsome/beautiful too." Especially, if you know you look good, and are smart and intelligent.

And if you did go that far, what was your experience? Did you feel better or worse afterwards? Did you finally come to the realization if you still loved your husband or wife?

I know it's a destructive thought and action. But there are times that it is on my mind and it's not so much for revenge but more for self-validation. The reality is my self confidence is in the shits knowing that "I was not enough."

But what I do know will happen is two things: 1) I will hate myself for stooping low to my WW's level and betraying, however righteous, and 2) I will feel zero guilt about it thinking this: "Whatever you put out there into the universe, comes back to you the same way, and this is what you have asked from this universe." And who knows, the circle of betrayal will go round and round, but the circle of betrayal could still go round and round without me doing anything at all.

[This message edited by devastated43 at 4:40 PM, November 20th (Monday)]

skins21 posted 12/6/2017 04:12 AM

I'm considering trying to get my self confidence back by having a physical relationship with someone. My problem is that I've never had a ONS and don't think I'm even capable of it. If I do go down this path I would actually want to get to know the person first and find them intellectually stimulating before I could be intimate. I know this is dangerous because it could lead to more than just a short term fling. I've tried everything to get over my WW 3.5 year LTA. I feel as though being desired by another woman might be the only way for me restore my self-confidence again after it's been completely shattered. I've only ever had 2 partners before so I definitely feel the need to see what else is out there now.

DevastatedDee posted 12/11/2017 14:59 PM

skins, I don't know that it will fix anything. If it would, I'd be cheering you on. It may be just that you can't get over it and it was a deal breaker, and there's no shame in that. I'm not sure whether it was for me or not yet and my RA didn't fix anything. Now to be fair, it allowed me to stay, but it didn't take away an ounce of the agony of his cheating. How long has it been since DDay?

Crazymixedupkid posted 12/13/2017 12:06 PM

Clients of mine went through one of the "cheating sites". I will not put their name here as I believe it is against the rules, however, they have the same last name as former president James Madison.

The revenge was, in one case, highly successful. The wife had a long term affair which only came to light when she was unceremoniously dumped and outed by the OBS. Her husband was totally livid, and went on the site in her presence. She begged and screamed. She threatened, and then he let her know that he did not give a shit. She could leave any damn time she wanted, however he assured her that if she walked, the entire world, inclusive of her job would find out, she would be fired and homeless at the same time. Not good for her. So she sucked it up for...3 years. She had conducted her affair for that amount of time, and so did he. She bristled, and made matters worse for herself. It only drove him into his AP's arms, eventually, he left and ended up with his AP. The wife, had totally compartmentalized her affair, and was upset that he was having sex with someone new. She could not see that her having sex with a guy at work was what propelled her husband. Eventually, her attitude was her undoing as he filed for divorce and eventually married the AP.

nicenomore posted 12/19/2017 21:58 PM

Skins.. you have every right to feel desired by a better woman than your wife. But know that it wont take away pain from her betrayal. It will be your own new happiness, side by side with pain from her actions. If you do it, Ditch your wife permanently, get her to forgot the majority of marital assets, and move on. Revenge to stay with her doesnít work out. Youíll feel Justice, but pain will be ever present .

poisonette posted 1/4/2018 22:03 PM

Is this the only place MHís are safe on this forum?

Iím going through the pain of being a BS again but this time he left me completely.

In the few talks weíve had about why he did this, my old EA-AP has come up every time. H also rewrote a few of our post-A talks. He even came up with a statement that I would never have said to him and he held onto it.

I still love him deeply and dearly. Iím still at a stage where I want the chance he never gave me in our current situation. I never knew we were in trouble.

But with him bringing up my AP, I realized he buried the event and convinced me he was over it. The pain is still there, obviously.

All I wanted was help and advice to try to find ways to guide my husband back into our marriage without pushing him further away.

Before anyone bashes me for that, I know how stupidly small the chance of that happening is and I need to focus on myself. I am. Im on meds. Iím in IC weekly, Iím reading self help books, Iím doing the 180 now. Iím on limited contact with him because I canít go full NC because of our DS.

I turn to the BS side for hope and get knocked down.
I turn to the WS side for advice on healing the wound in him and Iím violating the WS for being a MH. If my A influenced my Hís current A, Iíd like to understand it.

Iím sorry Iím so stupid around here.

nicenomore posted 1/4/2018 22:18 PM

Poisonette- sorry your here. I am an MH too, but from your husbands perspective. I can tell you that he rugswept your affair perhaps with the best of intentions, since it wasnít physical, he thought he could get over it. But over time, like any untreated wound it festered and grew. And resent built. He always wondered what a better option would be, and a lot of time goes back to ego, self worth, and insecurity (natural of course), that you may have been completely oblivious to you. This I assume, is why you were so caught off guard. If you have any questions that I might be able to answer from your husbands perspective I am here for you. You made mistakes, he made mistakes, but just because your a mad hatter doesnít make you unworthy of being here. Iím sure my ex w would have th same questions you do.

Lawyerman posted 1/5/2018 04:32 AM

Interesting reading some of the threads on here. I too have a over-developed sense of justice and fairness. She had more partners than me before we were together. I gave her all of me and she still cheated and then lied about it for nearly 20 years.

The pain is agonising and I don't expect that to go away with anything but time and IC but also there is anger and deep resentment and I think that comes from just the sheer unfairness of it. I'm starting to wonder if an RA would take that away. I wouldn't ever tell her. It could just sit in my mind. I could completely achieve that without it being a burden.

I always struggled with her having many more partners than me pre-us but just got on with it. I never once thought to even the score.

What might the flip side me? Shame? Guilt? A feeling that I have allowed myself to sink? I'm not sure. You only get one life and giving just about all of my adult life to her has certainly meant I have missed out on other 'adventures'. She on the other hand carried on.

I just wonder if it would stop that part of my brain from screaming 'injustice' for the rest of my marriage / life. Once we are both cheating scumbags, maybe we can be happy again.

DevastatedDee posted 1/5/2018 14:12 PM

Lawyerman, I don't know that it does. I have had many more sex partners than my WH has, and I think that bugged him. I had an RA on DDay and I'll admit that it enabled me to stay, but it does not get rid of the feeling of injustice. The injustice is that while I was being faithful and being a pretty darned good wife, he was screwing around on me. My RA doesn't change that. The feeling of injustice and the hurt is unchanged.

Lawyerman posted 1/6/2018 07:23 AM

Thanks Dee. I don't think it's in me to do it really and despite everything, not sure I could hurt her that badly, even if she never knew.

January886 posted 1/15/2018 17:04 PM

My WW has had a 6 month affair, and Iím losing my mind!
Over 12 years ago since my I last betrayed my wife.
Ive kissed 3 girls, on seperate occasions and gone home with one.
I admitted all but one (kiss) and finally came clean 2 days ago.
WW is livid and has now blame shifted completely to me.
I totally understand her anger, and deserve the consequences.
She has said no wonder she went to someone else etc...
I want to say to her ďreally, after what youíve doneĒ, but I think the damage is really from the fact I reigned down anger and judgement on her dishonesty, while I was no better.
My guts are churning, my brain is racing, my heart is hurting, when will this feeling ever subside??
There is just no escape!!
Dammit I have really fucked up this marriage and life.

GetGrilled posted 2/7/2018 11:42 AM

So here I am, despite feeling this thread is a lot like being sent to the corner to wear a dunce hat, i.e. worse than laying it all out in the WS section, which I have cathartically done:

I cheated first. It was awhile back and I do not want to do it again, even after, and especially now that I learned it goes both ways.

While I am working through all of that, and just recently had reason to suspect something was up and went snooping. I found "what I was looking for" and more, that she cheated with not one, but another guy too.

I would describe Guy #2 (the new discovery) as ongoing. She's expressed her love, shared "memories" (pictures of places they visited etc). Oh ... and he lives in another country but they see each other a few times a year on legit, shared business trips. She's had to tell white lies to coworkers about why they were at the same place/time on these mutual business trips.

One of her dearest friends knows about the affair and supports it. To be fair, one of my closest confidants whole heartedly supported me when I let him know I had a one night stand, and that earlier I had strong feelings for another woman. Friends can be both helpful and a roadblock.

She has another friend who she has been counseling her but I doubt she confided her infidelity to that friend. I have a strong desire to at some point let that friend know that the person she's supporting hasn't come clean with her about everything.

Self-employed, she has an employment contract with Guy #2's company. He has the power to make these contracts happen. There are daily conversations, both business and personal. It's all very well hidden on Skype or WhatsApp I have no way to see, except for a few texting scraps I found, some old some new, along with enough to clearly incriminate. If I had to guess, it's been going on for a year or so. I have some copies and screenshots archived.

Guy #2 is persona non grata on social media. They aren't even FB friends. I did act on an urge to briefly stalk for a day but don't know who his family is. I have two email addresses for him and his Australian phone number ... me and the kids all got souvenirs from Sydney last year. He got my wife, I literally got the tourist T-shirt.

I would describe Guy #1 (my earlier, initial suspicion) as also being an affair of convenience/work circumstance (he lives in another state) but that it was a one night stand. Last year I stumbled upon a text that made me suspicious (language being used) but I had no proof until now.

She even went to see him about a year ago "but that nothing happened" -- even though there had been NO confrontation by me, no asking her if she had cheated. If someone asks, after you got back from your trip, how was it? And you answer, "we just talked by the pool, nothing happened" that sounds a hell of a lot like you just said you were or had been guilty in the past I never ever raised any concern about him to her to cause that response. Her conscience did that.

When that went down, she had told me she wanted to go see him/needed to see him and I stepped back to let it happen. (At the time I was already wanting OUT from the marriage but didn't know how. And so I didn't care so much.) Today I'd probe more. Now that I've seen some recent conversations, I know that the visit was to say "OK, we did this, but no more." Small consolation ...

... but recently, the flirting with Guy #1 has increased. He's supposedly engaged to be married. I could msg his fiancť on FB if I wanted. He was to pass though town and she said he might stay over one night. Asked me "if that would be OK" and I gamely responded, "sure, why wouldn't it be OK" just as if he were any normal friend. No response.

The visit didn't materialize but she really wanted to see him, "even if just over coffee." She's reaching for him, and has expressed regret that when he visits his fiancť (also, out in yet another state ... ) she feels a little jealousy. Pathetic. I feel like messaging the fiancť to say, "here's why after a year+ engagement you still are not married; might wanna rethink it."

My initial reaction upon Just Finding Out was that I had "an epiphany" of sorts since I had no moral high ground, and to first come clean.

I was thinking an unsolicited disclosure from me would elicit a similar response/understanding. My friend says hell no, that women "rank" infidelities differently than men, and because she doesn't think very much good about the woman I had sex with, would instantly and forever irreversibly judge her/me in such a way that zero productive movement forward would be possible.

In other words the mutual friend I had sex with isn't someone my wife considered much of a friend to begin with. Very little respect due to how that OW handles her own situations and behavior. We've both known her for several years socially, and are good friends with her ex, who of course would now look at (me) in a way different light, and my wife weirdly too (if the ex knew what I knew about my wife ...)

My current situation is that I'm being strongly cautioned NOT to confront my wife, due to:

1) Me possessing no high ground
2) Repercussions to others (our kids, some mutual friends, and the related work situation)

Why cause pain to others if we don't first agree it's worth saving? I see this as a chicken-or-egg problem: How to begin trust without full disclosure from both sides, yet why trash other lives if it's unnecessary?

My current plan is initiate a discussion and learn if we agree the marriage is worth saving. And if so, begin to see if it CAN be saved.

We had a short talk unrelated to everything I now know last week, where we each fumbled around with "no, what do YOU want??" Neither wanted to blink first. More to the point, I now realize "what do you want" is the wrong question to ask at this point! Premature.

Despite everything I've typed above, I truly believe there are areas where we remain right for each other, if we can reach an understanding of who we are as individuals and as partners. We've just never tried before.

DevastatedDee posted 2/7/2018 13:03 PM

GetGrilled, is her cheating tearing you up emotionally? It comes across as if you aren't that hurt by it.

GetGrilled posted 2/7/2018 14:48 PM

DevastatedDee I was in a panic and felt angry a few days ago. I'm a little more sanguine today for reasons already stated (my previous actions/thoughts). A couple days worth of just breathing helps.

What I want is for her to be decisive and clear about her opinion if the marriage should be saved. I do not necessarily expect that to happen but am prepared either way. I will no longer accept her stance that I should somehow decide for the both of us (!) whether or not we stay together and if so under what conditions.

She needs to have thoughts about that and I'm sure she does. Our status quo is longer acceptable to me, but it was curiously one option she seemed to present!

DevastatedDee posted 2/7/2018 15:07 PM

You're right, she has to have a really strong desire to save the marriage if there's any chance at all. She can't just go along to get along and then just do whatever she wants. That so won't work. If she's not pretty passionate about fixing herself and the marriage, you really are better off single. You both need to feel wanted by the other at this point or you're just doing further damage to each other.

GetGrilled posted 2/7/2018 16:18 PM


What I can tell you is that it's not fun hearing work/play plans being made in the next room. Door's open, too. I mean, nothing overt is being said of course. Just knowing what I know is what makes it raw. She cares for him. I can hear it in her voice.

My emotions and plans are volatile since this latter aspect is unfolding in real time as I type. Yesterday was a good day. Today not so much. But after talking with a friend I'm getting closer to being able to nuance the upcoming talk with her. I hope!

The most-recent opening salvo was from her, last week, and occurred before I suspected and began snooping. I'm in a very different place today on all fronts.

Her business trip next month will proceed no matter what, but there's zero chance it'll be as carefree for her as she expects. She'll either be wrapping up the affair, running to it as fast as possible, or cautiously continuing it.

I'm uneasy, conflicted, and want to both be emotionally/physically GONE as well as wedded into this marriage for life in the fullest, healthiest way for us both. The sea-change that's occurred, is that last week I assumed there was only one path (leaving) but that I had zero clue what to do next.

If she told me at our next discussion that she considers the marriage dead and that we should divorce, I know I will feel relieved after a little while. I will be able to parse enough of what's happened and what's been said over the years to "conclude" yep, this is best, she'll never see any need for us to be different.

If she told me she values what we have enough to start over and rebuild (even if that ultimately becomes impossible; I'm not looking for guarantees) then at least I have what appears to be a stated commitment to us.

Somewhere, I'm going to want to open a door for her to state her infidelity. I need that trust obviously. If she can't or won't, I will take any suggestion of status quo or marriage commitment to be a false flag and we'll be done. Whether or not I openly confront her at that stage I can't say.

I want to let her know I "think" something's up ... that's me holding onto that secret info, but not entirely. My opening is actually very honest: the reason I suspected last week is due to what when down about Guy #1 almost stopping by, and the subsequent silence about the topic. All of that is public knowledge that caused me to wonder.

I'm counting on her being able to come forward about either guy with my help, but if she doesn't, especially after her trip next month, we're done. If she gets upset/curious/defensive and asks me if I've been faithful, I will be honest and tell her yes, once, and will honestly state that's not merely finished, but that I'm done wanting to engage in cheating behavior in any way.

If that sounds like trickle truth, like wanting to manufacture some morality where none is deserved, know that my goals are: find out what she values (keeping/ending the marriage) and yes, to test her honesty. I deserve knowing both.

If any of that seems a mistake, right about now would be a good time to say so! (please?)

GetGrilled posted 2/7/2018 16:23 PM

DevastatedDee we cross-posted our responses, but I agree with what you just said.

Texashunter41 posted 2/7/2018 16:36 PM

Grilled, did I see you said she is still active with her Ap?

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