Have you read everything in the healing library at left? Start there.
Yes, this is one of the most painful experiences one can have. You are normal in thinking that. We have had seasoned military vets on this site and people who have survived the death of spouses and other traumatic events who have said the betrayal by their spouse was the worst thing they went through.
However, every person here will tell you that you WILL survive this, and there WILL be better days ahead. Hold onto your thoughts of your kids – they really need you – they need one stable parent. Please talk to your doctor if you are feeling depressed or suicidal. Many people who never thought they would need anxiety or depression medication found it helped them get through the first months after D-day. Regardless of what your WH does, get IC (counseling) for yourself – you need support and someone to help you process your grief.
Your husband should be answering your questions; however, most WS (wayward spouses) find it very hard to face what they did at first. I strongly suggest Linda MacDonald How to Help Your Spouse Heal From Your Affair for him to read. In my situation, I was not willing to start MC (marriage counseling) until my H went to IC to figure out why he was such a liar. I didn’t see any point to it if he was unable to talk honestly about the affair.
I know you have a million questions, but here is my take on the two you asked first:
Please tell me when does the hurt start to subside?
How does a person live 2 lives for so long? What does that say about the level of deceit?
It sounds like you want to reconcile with your H, if possible. May I ask if he ended the affair, or was he caught? Is he withdrawn, or crying, or robotic? What does he say when you ask him questions about the A?
Suffering builds perseverance, perseverance character and character hope.
On the second page of this thread, you will find posts that are marked by a target, such as Tactical Primer and Before You Say Reconcile and Boundaries and Consequences. You may find some help there.
He is remorseful for the pain he's causing me but he will shut down and become defensive if I ask too many questions.
The problem is you cannot make him give you what you need, but my hope is between the book and seeing your pain and MC and IC, he will begin to see that being transparent is the right way to rebuild your trust and to figure out for himself how he became a person who betrays. My H really struggled with reconciling the image he had of himself and the reality of what he had done (not that I have much sympathy for that, but it does seem to be a problem for most waywards after d-day).
The other possibility is that the A is not really over, just driven underground. I hate to bring that up when you are already in such pain, but it happens, especially with a LTA. Are you certain he is NC with the AP? Is he being transparent in all other ways (other than being forthcoming with answers) such as access to phone and e-mails, coming straight home from work, etc.?
ETA: If you haven't found them yet:
Boundaries and Consequences 101:
Setting Healthy Boundaries:
Understanding the 180:
Great Posts for Newbies to Read:
Emotional Detachment: What is it? How is it accomplished?
Codependency in the Marriage: A BS’s common mistake
20/20 Hindsight: What I Should Have Done When I JFO
[This message edited by Lyonesse at 6:01 PM, January 11th (Saturday)]
Your husband is not remoreful and he needs to get there first. Figure out your line in the sand and draw it. But post back and post often. We've all been there. This might be the best and worst club you've ever joined. We all truly understand and care but trust me, NONE of us want to be here.
Secondly, you need to go on the offensive. You are the one that has been betrayed here, not him! He does not get to dictate how this will be resolved - you do! He does not get to mope around feeling sorry for himself. Either he starts doing the heavy lifting, or the marriage is over.
Counseling is completely pointless unless both are fully committed to building a new marriage.
1) File for divorce. This is an effective method of shocking your husband out of his affair fog. This does not mean that you actually will go through with the divorce as the process is a long one, and you can cancel it if he shows enough remorse.
2) Adopt 180.
3) Demand that you both have to take an STD test.
4) Have him write down a timeline of everything.
5) Expose the OW to her BH. Yes, they are divorced but he may still not know why.
You should not be ashamed of this. Ask friends and family members for support if you need it. If your husband objects - TOUGH!, he was screwing around for five years! You do what ever you need to do.
Another option could be to tell him to pack up his bags and go to the other woman. This may sound strange, but right now he thinks he has 2 women fighting over him. Cheaters feel superior to their betrayed spouse, and having two people fighting over them strokes their ego. By removing yourself from the equation you damage his ego. You also gain self-respect.
5 years is not a mistake. Using salt instead of sugar is a mistake. This is calculated betrayal.
I want you to know that you have been heard, and that it does get better. Not as quickly as any of us would like, but it does lessen.
I recall with absolute clarity how much it hurt on/ in the early weeks after Dday. I never knew anything could hurt that much, never knew how much emotions could cause actual physical pain, and just wanted it to STOP. I, too, thought of ending my life, just to stop the pain. Anything to make it go away. I promise you this is temporary suffering and you WILL get through it.
Just...breathe. This minute. Then for another minute. Then another. Eat. Sleep if you can. Love your precious babes. Take it one day at a time, and know you don't have to make any decisions today. Treat yourself gently and kindly, as you are in mental and physical shock. Read everything on SI that you can, there is gold to be mined here; SI has been my biggest help, including marriage counseling. It can help you, too.
Hang on. We're all here for you.
so terribly terribly sorry for your sudden decent into hell. My Ws's affair was also 5 year LTA and the shock was unbearable and the pain suffocating.
i don't know how people live two lives for so long; i would say that are broken in some way. good people don't put others on a skewer. Is there somewhere you can go to feel safe and secure and loved or better yet can you ask him to leave for a while while you sort yourself out, ask a friend to stay with you? Sometimes it's harder to do those things because your torturer also becomes your comforter in a very normal but twisted sort of way.
if he's staying in counseling it's a good sign. therapist will likely go around the issue for a while; that's normal. maddening that they don't want to discuss it.
don't have too much advice for you; my head is fried but just wanted to say that I too have the experience of a 5 year LTA and it's a pretty huge deception.. i could have gotten over it though had my WS had a soul. he doens't and i'm out.
it will get better for you no matter what
one day at a time
xoox so sorry
You're going to be ok. Keep saying that to yourself. Out loud so you can hear it.