The first time was right before Christmas in 2005. A full blown PA with a woman he worked with who had hit a rough spot in life. I think being desired by her and being her confidante just made him feel good about himself. I was completely crushed but he cried...swore he loved me, transferred to another store, and offered complete transparency...so we worked on it and it took a looong time...but we had gotten back to a place where I thought we were really good. I had also gone back to school and gotten into a field that would allow me to never have to depend on a combined income for financial security...and I had started to feel safe again.
WHAM! Another damsel in distress at work (younger woman this time who, again, stroked his ego I think). I found out 3 weeks ago....supposedly an EA with kissing only(when I thought to look...I found about 1000 texts per month and had to realize when looking at many of the pictures taken during our last vacation...that he had been regularly texting her in my presence.)
I'm emotionally bi-polar at this point...On top of everything else I feel like a complete idiot for being so blissfully trusting!!! I'm mostly unbearably... unspeakably...sad. There are times when I almost approach normal or am even overly attracted to him as if I have a claim to stake(go figure)...at other times...I'm just tremendously sad with bits of anger and depression thrown in for good measure. To his credit...he is very supportive of whatever emotion I happen to be feeling and seems to be trying to just be there in whatever way I need...even if that means just leaving me the heck alone.
I do think he loves me and he swears he wants nothing more than to keep me in his life... that he doesn't know what he was thinking...that he was an idiot. I worry that, more accurately, he just likes what I bring to the table in his life (friendship, travel experiences-I'm the planner and he loves going but would never get anywhere on his own, and my income doesn't stink either at this point.) I do truly think it makes him sad to know how badly he's hurt me...again...but obviously the heartache he caused the last time didn't stop him from doing it this time. So what if I'm just not enough and he's simply not brave enough to walk away....that would pretty much guarantee a repeat performance at some point and I can't take it.
I can't compete with younger-skinny-and-has-youthful-skin...I'll never be that again. Having said that, I know I don't hate him...I feel like we really do get along and I don't want to walk away from our marriage if we can survive this and salvage something worth having...but I don't know if that's possible. Right now I can't imagine EVER feeling emotionally safe with him again...and I don't want my heart ripped out again in another 10 years. I've had enough of that for one lifetime and I'd rather just be alone...I like my own company and know I'd be alright in time. I feel like I need to give it enough time to sort out my feelings and I don't feel capable of that right now...so I'm just plugging along without really even knowing what direction I want to travel in. I have a serious case of brain fog, find myself apathetic to most aspects of life, and my ability to focus is shot. Thank heavens for my kids and job...they force me to at least make some attempt at normalcy.
Is it even possible to work through this? Has anyone been through this twice and been able to reconcile and be happy again???? Can you ever look at pictures again and just enjoy the memories without associating them with heartache? Seriously don't know what to do...
YOU are enough, don't let him make you think anything less. His cheating really has nothing to do with you, your looks, your abilities, etc. HE is the one with the problem and he needs to solve his issues because this is all about him and his selfish, thoughtless, pathetic neediness to have outside validation from people who should never be in his life to begin with.
He will need to earn your trust back, which can be done through his willing to be transparent and honest and open with you about everything from now on.
There are some enlightening articles in the Healing Library, the link is in the yellow box in the upper left of your screen.
I do think he loves me and he swears he wants nothing more than to keep me in his life.
With that promise, I think he needs to dig deeper into why he is falling for this same scenario. What makes him forget to act such that it won't hurt you and thus keep you in his life. The words are always easiest to say. To follow them up with actions that show this promise tends to be the stumbling block of many. If he chooses to step up and show action upon action that reinforces this and doesn't sink to behaviors of cheating then your marriage has a great shot at surving if that is what your desire is too.
Think of the haters in your life as sandpaper; they’ll scratch you up time and time again but in the end you’re polished, smooth, and spotless..while they end up useless
We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.
So I guess he's doing everything right...I just don't know if I can picture us ever being normal again...ever being really good again. Only time will tell and I'll give it the time I need to know...but if two years down the road I'm not at least heading for some semblance of happy and secure again...I've researched my options for change and will have my ducks in a row to facilitate that should the need arise. Right now I'm exhausted by the overwhelming sadness that keeps kicking me in the gut...and am hoping that will resolve to something more manageable soon so that I can get some ability to focus back. This fugue state is tough to function in.
No MC till he gets to the bottom of his poop.
Admitting he is at fault might be a start - but only a baby-step. What the hell is he going to do to make himself a responsible, loyal, honest adult?
[This message edited by JustWow at 7:22 AM, November 24th (Sunday)]
edited for typos (I always have to!)
She's younger and he said he was flattered and stupid and he doesn't have a good excuse for why he caved other than feeling the affects of getting older...aging skin, less hair, etc and that it was like a stupid man's balm.
This was just like one of the many "reasons" that I heard. I've kept a list. Someday, I might even look back and laugh.
I put away all photos of "us" and I took off my wedding ring.
The 180 might be helpful for you...it's over in The Healing Library, a clickable link off to the left of the screen.
I feel your pain, ((((ladycody.))))