Update: attempting to reconcile
Hugs to you both.
Delay is the deadliest form of denial. - C. Northcote Parkinson
4 kiddos in lower 20's
“Slide the weight from your shoulders and move forward. You are afraid you might forget, but you never will. You will forgive and remember."
For me, the phrase, "But at the time . . . " can really do a number on me, if I let it. It's not hard to conjure up even just a small moment in time and see myself living in an oblivious, trusting state all while my WS was actually thinking those wacko thoughts about another person and then acting on them (and for me, he didn't just do that for a brief, fleeting second. No, he thought and acted that way day in and day out, night after night for 15 months. It's pretty hard to say 15 months without screaming a series of expletives.)
That small, innocent sounding thought – “at the time” or “but there was a time” -- can bring on big triggers, rage and hopelessness, can't it? It’s truly unimaginable. Your mind races with thoughts of what were we saying to each other, what was going on between us, what were we doing while he was thinking of, alone with and having sex with someone else? I mean, it’s that kind of ruminating that can make you feel like you are going to lose your mind. It’s no wonder why so many people can’t get past it, can’t push through. They’re locked into the trauma of that very thought, “but there was a time.”
V12, my argument to your post was written more to me than you or anyone else. Just as our WSs did some unreal mental gymnastics to pull off their betrayal, we too, have to do our own kind of strenuous mental work to help get us out of the hole we've found ourselves in. I think the difference is that unlike our WSs, we are choosing to work with the truth, all of it, even the ugly parts, rather than with foolish lies.
Dig deep to find out what is true, what is real, and when you do, hold onto it with all you’ve got.
((((Veronique)))), there are so many similarities in our stories. You aren't alone.
The experiencing self is the "you" in the moment who lives through the event. The remembering self is the "you" that writes the history. It is also the remembering self that is consulted when planning the future. Choices are made based on the remembering self's construction of what happened in the past. Now here's the problem. The experiencing self and the remembering self don't agree on what happened. In fact, Kahneman has shown that certain discrepancies are hard-wired.
I bumped Arnold's thread, too:
[This message edited by IWantDoOver at 9:15 AM, March 3rd (Monday)]
1. My WBF had an A while travelling to work in Brazil. He is back now, and won't be returning. I'm having a hard time feeling like the "2nd choice". It would be very difficult, and probably unrealistic for him to actually leave me for the OW. It makes it harder for me to believe him when he tells me that he would want to be with me without the distance from OW.
2. Previously, I was engaged to another WBF who had an 18 month A with a girl that he worked with. Initially, he told me that he wanted to be with me, but after a while he admitted that he really did love the OW, and she was the "one that he was meant to be with". They are now married and have 2 kids. So, as you can see, my previous experience makes it hard for me to beleieve that the love that my current WBF expressed isn't real.
Most A's lose steam after they are out in the open however--bc the "love" isn't legit. It's fantasy.