My story. I began dating my H when I was 13 & he was 15. Neither of us dated anyone else before or after. We were pregnant my Jr. year of High School. We married (age 17 & 19) and had our child in less than a month. I graduated high school and started working (he was already working). The first 3 years were difficult on every level; financial, emotional, parental, etc. Three years into our marriage, he started having an affair. It didn't take me long to discover it. In the short 3 months of the affair, I never stopped loving him but was devastated, crushed, humiliated, etc. We began talking and working things out between ourselves with no outside intervention. We understand what drove us apart and we continuously work on that. We will be celebrating our 28 wedding anniversary next month.
Recently, my H has been trying to bring more romance into our marriage which I am not opposed to. This has lead to several moments of talking with sincere honesty. However, I built up a very strong "wall of protection" of my own emotions. This "wall" divided my H into two people. I could not look at pictures nor think about him and our relationship pre D-day. I have had a very hard time being intimate because I always wondered if he compared. My self esteem never survived the affair.
I consciously decided to be more open (tear down my wall) but I find the hurt is just as strong as it was 25 years ago. I now also find myself with jealousy. I have never held hands, kissed, or had sex with anyone other than my H. Just knowing he has bothers me a great deal (jealousy). I realize I am old fashioned feeling that sex is a way to express love and not just a physical action. Because of this, I still feel the betrayal hurt.
Why, after 25 years, does this still hurt so much? Whatever happened to "time heals all wounds"? Does one ever truly heal? I feel the need for my "wall" to go back up to stop the pain but I also want to be "in love" with my H and not just love him. I can't do that with a "wall".