He hasn't worn his ring since October. At the time he told me it didn't mean anything anymore. Well, that wasn't exactly true, but I get his point. Because I was engaged in lying and cheating throughout the months we were engaged, leading up to our wedding, and after the meaning of unity, commitment, monogamy aren't there for his band. Heís absolutely right. I did not honor any of the meaning of the rings. Just typing that brings the shame spiral down on my head. Instead, the rings represent my lies to him. His ring had two recessed bands in it, and he feels those represent the person I held myself out to be, and the person I actually am. He says there is no overlap. To him it is the good Way and the bad Way. He now sees just the Bad Way. He wrote that no matter what ends up happening he will never again wear a ring from me.
Until last week I wore either the ring he chose for me, or the plain band I bought for myself to wear while working out, digging in the yard, etc. During our session I removed the plain band and threw it in the trash. Our C asked me to fish it out and make no decisions about it until the emotional reaction had cooled. I did as she asked, but am still contemplating throwing out my band and his. They donít mean anything good any more. I will not throw out the ring he chose for me, it is worth something, even if I never wear it again. Right now it is clearly too painful for him (I saw the pain on his face when he saw I was wearing it), and it stands for things in his eyes I donít want.
All of this is related to pre-A relationship issues. He always knew I wanted to be married, but never felt like I meant that I wanted to be married to him. Of course my As have driven that feeling of being replaceable home, because as he says I ďreplaced him, many times.Ē I, on the other hand, also never thought he wanted to get married to me. Early in our relationship he would talk about marriage being an archaic institution. Later, he would talk about how he thought marriage was nothing more than a ring and a piece of paper. Then he seemed more open to the idea, but not with me. I couldn't figure out what the problem was. The problem was that I was too bull headed to acknowledge my role in our relationship and the dysfunction of my FOO.
So I started asking, ďNow that ___________ has occurred can we get married?Ē I stated that I did not want a ring, that I would accept a plastic ring from a cracker-jack box, or nothing at all. Which I've learned is a statement he didn't believe. Because we had been together for a decade he felt immense pressure (some self-applied some outwardly applied by busybody 3rd parties) to get me something ďworth the wait.Ē Ugh. I donít even know what that means. Of course I was blown away by the ring, how could I not be. Itís beautiful, unique, amazing. But it was reluctantly given. Heíd had the ring for 6 months prior to giving it to me. He was reluctant. He had every right to be reluctant. I actually told my IC yesterday ďWhy wouldn't he be reluctant? Who would want someone as broken as me?Ē
I felt rejected by the reluctance. I felt rejected when he went on an exchange. I feel unworthy, ugly, like I will never be good enough. He always responds with, ďI always thought you were enough.Ē But he didn't, and heís blind to the contradiction. And here we are. Iím the bad-guy because I had affairs, I cheated, and I lied about it. Iím the bad guy because I still minimize, although Iím getting better about catching it.
This whole thing about wedding rings just has me tied up in knots. Of course he doesn't want to wear the ring I gave him on our wedding day. But the meanings heís assigned to the ringsÖ the hurtful things he says with the intent to hurt meÖ the hurtful things he says because they are trueÖ I want to wear a wedding band. I didn't always act like a married person when I did, but I've been acting as a monogamous spouse should. Iím proud of being married to my BH. I want that symbol for the world to know. Itís really important to me. But I just canít bring myself to wear any of the rings I have. I want him to wear a wedding band again someday. It doesn't have to be today, but I want it to be an option.
It sucks to know that I've made it impossible for either of us to truly have what we want from our relationship. My BH wants to have an honest wife he can trust, who is his partner in life. I want an honest partner I can trust too. I donít want to be settled for, even now. Itís been made clear that my BH did settle for me at the beginning, and if we stay together I will never know for sure it isn't because heís settling yet again. He doesn't want to be settled for either. Who does? Why would anyone want to be second choice? He isn't my second choice, he was always my first choice. He is still my first choice.
So I donít know what to think or do about our rings. Anyone have a story? An opinion? Iím willing to listen.
Appalled by my actions, and the choice to set off several atomic bombs in my life.
I know a lot of my guy friends who had the ring for a while (months, one over a year). My h had my ring for over 2 months before he proposed.
I would not read having the ring for 6 mo and being reluctant. Wanting to get it right, being nervous/excited, etc. maybe but it is a big life decision and very NORMAL!
I think you need to work in MC about how you can make him feel more safe/valued and that you have not replaced him.
Likewise, you probably need to have a conversation with your MC there to help the dialogue about if he was reluctant to propose, and if so why.
In the meantime here's what I would say to him: Baby, I love you more than anything. I am so honored that you asked me to marry you in the first place and that you are now giving me the gift of R in our marriage. I understand that our earlier rings were tainted by my affair. I would love to pick out new rings together - they don't have to be over the top or expensive - but I would like to make that visual commitment (describe what it is to you - to be a great wife, to be monogamous, etc.) to the rest of the world. I promise you and will show you by my actions everyday that I will honor it. I'd also like to get you a new ring, symbolizing our new path and my love for you.
And then see what he says. If he needs time, he needs time.
The theatrics (throwing your band and threatening to throw his out) really need to go!
I would love him to wear it again, but dont want to pressure him to put it back on if he isnt ready.
I love my diamond ring it's beautiful and he picked it out and worked hard to get it for me. Maybe some day we will have it reset in a new setting and I will get to wear it again. For now I'm very happy and thankful for this simple band I'm privileged to be wearing.
I wear my engagement ring and my wedding ring all the time, they never leave me. And if we D, I will simply wear them on my other hand. He is father of my children, the most important man in my life, he will always have my heart and I will wear those rings as a sign of that.
[This message edited by BrokenButTrying at 7:36 PM, April 8th (Tuesday)]
My Ddays - 01/10 & 12/04/14
His Dday - 23/12/13
Chin up. Unwavering. Fight. I can do this.
On the other hand, literally, I wanted my wife to wear her ring much more. I requested she wear it to bed, while tanning, and when working outside. I asked she not to treat it like bling but rather as a wedding band that reminds her of me (so long as it never touched the other mans penis)
All of this is related to pre-A relationship issues. He always knew....
[This message edited by still-living at 9:23 PM, April 8th (Tuesday)]
Recovery is building a pyramid of inference from which to climb and see clearer, and heavy usage of the reflexive loop.
BSs are not to throw 2x4s in this forum. If you can't post respectfully, please stay off the thread.
"That's the thing about pain, it demands to be felt."
Yes of course the rings have meaning.
Back in the day when people would replace wedding bands they would go to their priest or pastor and have the rings blessed.
As a BS I hated him wearing the same ring he wore or had while cheating. I hated my set because it meant nothing to me. To me wevwere not married.
It took me years to decide too remarry him in Church and we bought a new set of rings.
Everyone heals differently what he writes today may have no meaning next week.
So you love this man you show him.with every breath you take. My spouse showed me daily how sorry he was by staying, fighting for us.
Keep strong find your self worth..
Ever since the first D-Day, nearly 6 years ago, my wife has not worn her wedding band. In fact, we sold her engagement ring and some other jewelry that we had. Neither of us wore a band or anything that would suggest to the world that we married.
It wasn't until we were getting close to celebrating our 5 year anniversary that we went to a store to pick out matching gold wedding bands. I was supposed to by her a gemstone ring, but she ended up getting me a Tiffany band.
Fast forward a few D-Days later and it's back to no ring wearing for her and with me wearing the Tiffany band daily. Even though I broke my vows, I still would like to have a chance to make amends and save our relationship. If there is a possibility of reconciliation, I will keep my ring on.
My engagement ring is a sapphire, a symbol of loyalty. I used to be proud of that. Now the rings make me so sad to see, all I see are his broken promises to me. It's been a month today exactly and I noticed this morning that you can't even see that I used to wear rings on my left hand. That makes me so sad.
I have WH's grandmother's wedding band. I got it sized down for me. When I'm ready and when WH can tell me what it means to be my husband, I will give the ring to him to give to me. I let him know I want him to make it meaningful when he gives it to me. I let him know that I want him to make me new promises, promises that he will keep.
Weíve had the discussion about reluctance with our MC several times. It wasnít just that he had the ring for 6 months prior to giving it to me. More, it was about the reluctance to even discuss marriage. Early in our relationship he stated that he believed the entire institution to be archaic. When he finally seemed open to the institution, he was waiting for me to become his partner. As I stated before, I can see now what he was waiting for, and how I did not provide that safety for him. I am doing the work to change myself in some very fundamental ways so that I can be safe, a true partner, and a whole person. Truthfully it is a testament to his healthier state of being that he was reluctant to become attached to such a broken person as me. I have had a very toxic relationship with my FOO, and that was a major issue that needed resolution. Currently I am not in communication with any of them with any sort of regularity, and am working to keep any unavoidable contact limited.
Respectfully, I donít agree that discussing the urge to throw out the rings is a form of theatrics. If you reread what I wrote, I was careful to say itís something I am thinking about. That, for me is the point of writing a post. Itís on my mind. Things are often clearer after the clouded and murky thoughts are written out. KWIM? Throwing out the ring in MC was. I own that, but it was done not to make a statement. It was an emotionally charged poor attempt at acknowledging what he was saying. I am not making any decisions about what to do with any of the rings at the moment. I have them put away safely, and will continue to hold onto them until I am able to make a clear decision with my BH about what to do with them.
Iím in the same boat. I would love him to wear a ring again someday, but am applying no pressure to do so. Even the thought of asking seems unfair to do in some respects.
When my Bh first told me why he took his ring off, I had the same thought as Knight. Almost verbatim I thought, ďBut Iím the one who broke our vows.Ē Itís interesting trying to walk the line between sharing or not depending on the issue, my response etc.
Thatís essentially what Iíve done. My BH actually put his ring in my jewelry box. I have moved it, but it is still safe.
I did buy him a new ring. But he made it clear he does not want it. He literally stated that he will not ever wear another ring from me again. I am, by no means trying to deny him his feelings. I was careful to state that I absolutely understand why he feels as he does. Reread what I wrote. I think youíll see it. I could not respond because of the pre-A relationship issues, and I know that we are not yet at a point where we can deal with the relationship pre-A. But sometimes I still need to process those feelings. I wasnít looking for an immediate resolution of the issue, per se. Instead I am wondering what other people have done, how has it changed over time. Iíve read posts where BSes have smashed their rings, thrown them in the river, whatever. If my BH decided to do any of those things I would absolutely suck it up and deal with it. And thatís what Iím ultimately asking. Is this something that will never change for him and I just have to live with it, or is there a chance things will change?
Thank you for responding. I was wondering if yours was a common position on the whole issue. And, it appears it may be.
I can see that you in a lot of pain. Iím sorry that my post triggered you. I am not complaining in this post, and do not wish to do so. If you read it that way, you are mistaken. My intent was to express my sorrow at creating this cesspool that my BH and I are now swimming in. He is the most intelligent, caring, brave, kind, gentle, hardworking, and interesting person I know. My BH has always been my biggest champion, and greatest support. There was a time when I was blind to that. I am a broken person who has made many mistakes, and many more bad choices, in my life. My BH inspires me to want to be whole. He inspires me to want to be well, to rid my life of toxic people and relationships. Regardless of how you judge my situation, that is my truth, and it is what I am working to make possible.
Thank you for your encouragement. I think what youíve written about your perspective is very similar to what my BH was getting at. He felt as though the ring I gave him meant nothing, and I think he is afraid any other ring I gift him will equally mean nothing. That is something I completely understand intellectually. Emotionally it still hurts, but Iím dealing. We are not religious, or even spiritual, individually or as a couple. But I do like the symbolism of having the rings blessed by someone. I might just look into it if we do ever go through a recommitment ceremony.
I get where you are coming from. We are still legally married. I am working my behind off to try and become safe for R. We are not yet there, but it isnít off the table. My BH is incredible, and I want people to know I am his. Maybe even more so now, after everything, than ever before.
Thank you for sharing. I did not realize that sapphires stood for loyalty. My ring also has a sapphire in it, which is appropriate if you apply the meaning of loyalty to my BH. He was, and still is. I should have been.
[This message edited by Wayflost at 4:33 PM, April 9th (Wednesday)]
You can't change his view of two bands = "the person I held myself out to be, and the person I actually am." But you can create something new from the material...perhaps something symbolizing growth? Unity?
My best thinking brought me to SI.
I hated wearing my ring knowing it had a "soul mate" diamond in it (where they take one larger diamond and cut it into the two alongside the center diamond) and of course he obviously broke that promise. So yah, I can relate to your BH's position.
I had my WH's ring custom made by a jeweler = it's an amazing band with a celtic knot of two hearts intertwined... and it's meaningless for me now. I asked him to take it off and earn it back but he asked to wear it to help him
So he's still wearing his even though I told him it bothered me and came across as simply keeping up appearances. I'll give him the benefit of my doubt and hope it is helping him focus on why he wants to stay and fix things. I hope we are able to R and be stronger through all of this cr***
Dunno - it's too early for me to really know really how I'll be in a couple of years regarding wearing rings. For me, I didn't need a ring to tell me to be faithful but for now I will respect his wishes if it truly will help him.
WH is katumus and I am not reading his posts but we talk a lot and working on listening better!
married 17 years
Is this something that will never change for him and I just have to live with it, or is there a chance things will change?
My guess is that he's thinking it takes more than a verbal statement and a piece of gold from you before he is ready to accept, and wear a ring signifying, your commitment. I see nothing wrong with this. Its gonna take time and validation to prove you are trustworthy. This is one of the prices you pay. The biggest one. The one requiring the most work. There is no quick fix. It requires time and consistency. You need to be his hero, more than just end the affair and say you will never do it again. Think about it, if a dog viscously bits you, would you ever trust that dog again with your life on a daily basis? Most people would make it so they never need to trust such dog again. Im not calling you a dog or an animal, just saying this is the same correlation. It's not easy to trust. You need to build your trust bank with him. You need to make yourself more vulnerable to him than ever before. You need to throw your heart on the chopping block for him nearly every day. Basically you need to lick his face and show your belly to him several days in a row before he is willing to trust you. He also needs to understand why it happened, why you had the affair, and why its not applicable anymore. He also needs to trust himself that he will survive without you should you fail again. In summary, a lot is required for him wear that ring. I say good for him, he's on the right path, nothing personal against you.
[This message edited by still-living at 3:27 PM, April 9th, 2014 (Wednesday)]
Two months after DDay, BH and I took a cruise to Mexico. While in Cabo we got tattoos. BH had just quit drinking and got the word 'Accept' tattoo'd on his arm. Wanting desperately to show him how much I loved him, I got the word 'Devoted' tattoo'd on my ring finger. The gesture didn't exactly sweep him off his feet and he has questioned the rationale behind it. He has asked me what I would do if we didn't work out. The fact of the matter is, it is a permanent reminder of the fact that I have hurt my husband, the closest person to me. It is a permanent reminder that I truly do love my husband. And I will permanently devote my love to the both of us. To healing and becoming a better person. If he were to leave tonight, I will forever love him for the man he is. And I would show my tattoo with pride because it represents such a pivotal part of my life.
After our first year of R, I had bought BH a new ring. The ring is pretty cool and represents him really well. He wore it for some time but had gone back to his original band more for comfort than anything because the new ring is a little bulky. I have been glad that he still wears his ring but would understand if he didn't want to.
As far as my ring goes, I love it. It's beautiful and I know that BH gave it to me out of love. I don't consider it tainted in any way because it represents his love for me. The only time that has ever been in question was in my own crazy mixed up world. And I am pretty sure I am the only person in this world that had any doubts. I would be heartbroken to replace it. Which may seem like a funny thing for a wayward to say, but so much has changed in almost four years.
Sorry, such a long way to go to say I have no advice really. Just sharing my personal experience.
It's not a bad idea. Maybe I'll take it up with him someday.
I appreciate your candor. The problem is we still struggle with communication. We still haven't discussed whether he would like me to earn it back, if he wants me to wear it at all, or if it matters to him. I suppose that should really be the first step for me: ask what he would like me to do. I don't want the ring to remind me to be faithful, but as an outward acknowledgement of the relationship. As I said, I'm proud to be his wife. If I could tattoo it on my forehead and still be taken seriously, I would. But I don't wan't to trigger his pain. I took it off, and I will not put it on again until we have that conversation.
I agree with you. My BH is doing the right thing. That does not offend me, because it is not about me. KWIM? I know I have a metric sh** ton of work to do. Everything about me has to change fundamentally, and that process sucks. But I'm doing it because we both deserve it. I deserve a better life than I was living for myself, and he deserves a better spouse, a partner, and companion.
Yes, it's that exactly. The day to day work goes on, but it's nice to have something that represents the effort and the love.