I am curious as to what it is exactly you need for others to see here?
Society tells us that it's okay to cheat if it's with the one who got away (The Notebook), that we should cheat because life is short (Ashley Madison), sometimes we don't find our soul mates right away (Bradjolina), it's okay as long as it's meaningless (craigslist, strip clubs, hookers), it's okay as long as it's meaningful (Alicia on The Goodwife), even good significant others cheat (Upside Down by Diana Ross), infidelity can be romantic (The Pina Colada Song), and of course, there's the conventional wisdom that if you're a man cheating is normal (because you're a man), and that if you're a woman cheating is okay (because your husband must not be fulfilling you). In other words there are hundreds of sources that support wayward thinking.
Even the relationships around us can reinforce narcissism and self-gratifying pleasure-seeking. The facebook "friends" who tell you what a special flower you are because you look hot in a selfie, the friend who tells you that you should be happy and if your spouse isn't satisfying your needs then you deserve more, your friend finding out she's the OW and then forgiving the man because he didn't mean to hurt his current spouse, the acquaintance who goes home with women from bars but only when his wife is out of town, the boss who is sleeping with her married employee.... There is no shortage of this in our everyday lives.
As a result, I think that some people come here expecting similar reinforcement. But that is not what they need. They need someone to tell them, in no uncertain terms, that they are on a path to destruction and are not living authentically (I love AN's explanation for how she picked her screen name).
Therefore, SI veterans often assume that you have plenty of influences in your everyday life that set the stage for your infidelity in the first place. And this website would not exist if wayward thinking simply needed to be supported, because there is enough of that already.
Brokeback is stepping away for a bit. Please wait to post until she returns.
[This message edited by SI Staff at 9:26 PM, April 24th (Thursday)]
In the beginning, I clearly stated it was a mere observation that at times, ppl seem to respond when they are angry, hurt or feel bitterness.
My intent of this post was to simply ask ppl to check in with themselves befor posting on someone's thread. Bc whether they are aware of it or not, their words may inflict more harm if not delivered with care and sensitivity and thought. And, I do think there are a good many of you who do that genuinely and beautifully. I also have seen the exact opposite.
I came here as someone who has lived through the affair. I have been through the roller coaster, and some days continue to ride if need be. I have gone inward, I have accepted my failures as a human, I have repented, I am remorseful. But I am also beautiful and proud, and loving and fun and courageous, and humbled and grateful.
To me, whether you have one post, 300 posts, 5000 posts or 19,000 posts, our voices count. More posts does not make anyone better than anyone; wiser or more experienced and along in the journey, perhaps - perhaps not.
I got PO'd bc I was put on the defensive to explain why I thought the way I did...and no matter how I tried to explain myself, the need for clarity from certain folks grew. It couldn't just be accepted for what it was.
I'm not here to defend myself in anyway for anyone.
The marshmallows and kumbha and jokes about what I was trying to say put my over the edge and did feel like bullying and belittling.
I thank all of you who saw my true intent. I appreciate those of you who understood where I was coming from and who perhaps have felt very similarly at times.
Someone said that this topic comes up a lot. I say if it comes up a lot, could it be there's an issue; a undertone of meaness at times?
If I wanted to be disrespected on Facebook, I'd be on Facebook. This is a support group, maybe I expect too much. I have zero tolerance for it in my life. I have even less tolerance for it when I see someone struggling and hurting, and then someone else comes in and pours salt of their open wounds or kicks them when they are already down. We know how dark this journey is, how fragile and lost and terrified everyone is who finds themselves here. I expect those who have BTDT to understand the depths of their words. Bc if it is delivered with coldness or carelessness, who knows how the receiver feels and what they do next.
I have respect for your POV on how responses to posters should be "delivered with care and sensitivity and thought".
However I get the impression you don't have much respect or tolerance for the tough love, hard truth delivery method.
My POV is there is room for both and both are valid.
Unfortunately we don't have the luxury that IC's and therapists have of hour long sessions with individuals to determine the most effective method of communication to achieve the best outcome.
We get a few lines or a few paragraphs if we're lucky.
Most WS's don't put anything in their profile.
Coupled with the fact that a (large?)proportion of 'newbies' are in the habit of minimising and outright lying to themselves as well as the rest of the world.
Some of us adopt a 'softly, softly' approach, others favour the 'tough love' approach.
We leave it up to the original poster to determine which approach works best for them.
The onus is on them to filter what they feel is not helpful in their particular situation.
The "Take what you need, leave the rest" system.
There were a number of replies in this post and other similar posts from WSs who emphatically state that they appreciated and needed the 'tough love' when they arrived at SI. It worked for them, whereas the 'softly, softly' didn't.
I get the feeling you are dismissive of this outcome and it's validity.
In closing I repeat, I respect your POV, I just disagree it's the only way to achieve results.
[This message edited by SlowUptake at 8:40 AM, April 26th (Saturday)]
"Do not say a little in many words but a great deal in a few." Pythagoras
There are two kinds of people in the world.
Those who can extrapolate from incomplete data.
I heard the voices of those who are grateful of the tough love approach.
I'm a believer in that approach as well, as long as it comes from a place that is genuine and not outrageously mean.
I'm moving on. I've said my peace on this topic and would like to focus my attention on helping others and growing more in the healing process.
Thank you again.
I came here as someone who has lived through the affair. I have been through the roller coaster, and some days continue to ride if need be. I have gone inward, I have accepted my failures as a human, I have repented, I am remorseful.
Do you actually feel comfortable saying this a mere 6 months out from your DDay, according to your sig? This almost comes across as "I'm done with my work!"
While you are saying this in a very mature and kind way, the underlying message DOES strike a nerve with me, and likely with others- no matter how "mature" your intentions are. Therefore, one should be careful with how a written message on a forum is interpreted by different individuals, and not assume anything!
JMO, of course.
Support can come from many ways. In infidelity, support has to be carefully administrated. Waywards who have regret and not remorse really need to hear the truth about the damage they have done. Some have used false justifications to support their decision to stray and some have legitimate issues but neither is justification to step out on the marriage. Some people respond to blunt truth because that's what they want, others respond to gentler methods because they can't take harsh criticism or they are not in a place to receive that kind of "tough love"
All here speak from experience, I don't think it is intended to sound superior or I am better than you. More of, this is what happened to me. I've BTDT, here's what worked for me.
The truth can be hurtful when it's your truth. No one likes to look in the mirror and see the monster they became. Conveying that in " not-so-flowery" responses can be interpreted as crass and uncaring. Yes, some people can go overboard, but I believe their true intent is to help.People in wayward are still working through their problems whether they are veterans or newbies. So keep that in mind also.
The moderators are good here, they will govern when someone has gone too far. They do a good job. If you have an ought with what someone has said that you feel they overlooked, bring it to their attention and they will look into it.
I surmise that you are intelligent, independent and straight-forward. You will meet others here just like you and you may bump heads.
This site is far from a joke..thousands have saved their marriages here. Many of the members here are why those marriages were saved.
It's good to have someone of your character here.
You can help others as other's intent here is to help you.
Take what you need and leave the rest.
[This message edited by floridaredman at 9:14 AM, April 26th (Saturday)]
Your message was thoughtful and well received.
I'm here to help. And to heal as well.
I appreciate the support.
[This message edited by brokeback at 9:23 AM, April 26th (Saturday)]
We all have different opinions about everything. Please take what you want and leave the rest.
Don't let a few influence your feelings about SI, we are all different yet we all mean well.
Glad you didn't leave.
Guns don't kill people; Affairs kill people
I'm here and I'm not leaving, as I have too much self-work to do.
I'm thankful for a place that gives each of us a forum to be heard. Truly.
I understand what you're saying and it is an important message.
I don't need flowery support. There is enough of that in real life, like Ticking said, validation of wayward thinking is everywhere. For me, niceness only enables my destructive behaviour.
I need 2x4's. Prods in the back with a large stick to keep me on the right track, To point out when I'm wandering off and make me get back on. I don't want someone leading me gently along, I want voices yelling at me. It reminds me that I'm strong enough to do this alone.
So, I am proof that we need those voices as well as the gentle ones. Those are the ones I respond to on the threads I start and when I look for advice.
Everyone here is an adult and capable of taking what they need and leaving the rest.
I respect you POV and appreciate you voicing your opinion. I have heard you.
My Ddays - 01/10 & 12/04/14
His Dday - 23/12/13
Chin up. Unwavering. Fight. I can do this.
(I'm not speaking to your situation, Brokeback, just to my experiences in observing new waywards to the forum in general. I don't know if this permissiveness is your experience)
DeeplyScared has said it before, but I think the end goal of SI is individual healing first, and marital healing second, and that holds true for both BS and WS. Destructive behaviors like infidelity are, first and foremost, personally destructive to the person committing them. They leave the black mark of shame on the psyche....and many of our WS live (and struggle) with that every day, and I think efforts to help their fellow WS are coming from a place of honestly trying to spare the new WS further self-harm down the road.
Some posters take a lumber-swinging approach....some take a kinder, gentler approach. It's all about that individual poster being honest about whatever approach feels most authentic to them. They certainly could 'tone it down' if they so chose, but then they're just conforming themselves to meet other's expectations, and my guess is that many of them spent a lifetime trying to be someone they weren't already...and to do that again seems wrong and inauthentic to them...a reversal of much of the self-work that's been put in.
Also, I think SI is a safe place...but it's safe from personal attacks, and from people who haven't lived through your (roughly similar) experiences from commenting on your situation....hence, in the wayward forum the waywards 'get tough' with each other in a way that BS are not generally allowed to with the WS. It's not safe from the calling out of blameshifting and other unhealthy coping mechanisms. Individual healing being the end-goal, unhealthy patterns of thought are going to be pointed out as a necessity. (Again, speaking in general, not to your situation.) Hell, even in the Betrayed Men forum we call each other out if it seems like someone is making excuses for their unremorseful WW.
I think that 99% of the time here on SI, the poster's heart and message, and not necessarily the conversation mannerisms, are what most need to be taken into account....and those are in the right place, usually.
Just my musings. YMMV, take what you need, etc....
I've heard your voices and appreciate where you are coming from. I'm learning in this process...always.
They certainly could 'tone it down' if they so chose, but then they're just conforming themselves to meet other's expectations, and my guess is that many of them spent a lifetime trying to be someone they weren't already...and to do that again seems wrong and inauthentic to them...a reversal of much of the self-work that's been put in.
This ^ and this
hence, in the wayward forum the waywards 'get tough' with each other in a way that BS are not generally allowed to with the WS. It's not safe from the calling out of blameshifting and other unhealthy coping mechanisms. Individual healing being the end-goal, unhealthy patterns of thought are going to be pointed out as a necessity.
are so true of what I have found here in the wayward forum. And I believe it is why I have always felt it was my comfortable place. It was where I knew I would get called out on my shit. Where people would be real with me when no one else was. The wayward forum can be tough, but I feel that often it needs to be. Our thought processes often need to be called out, and we can be defensive of that. Even though this place is tough, it has always felt safe to me. And I believe other waywards feel the same as well.
It's all about that individual poster being honest about whatever approach feels most authentic to them. They certainly could 'tone it down' if they so chose, but then they're just conforming themselves to meet other's expectations, and my guess is that many of them spent a lifetime trying to be someone they weren't already...and to do that again seems wrong and inauthentic to them...a reversal of much of the self-work that's been put in.
I've spent a lifetime of being told I should know better, but was never given the opportunity to try so I would know better. I was supposed to automatically know. Everything. But I didn't. And worse, I didn't have a voice. I conformed to what other individuals wanted in me. I said what would get the least negative reaction. Not what I felt or believed. But what would keep me out of trouble or facing someone's anger and disapproval.
I've since started finding my voice. And sometimes it still shakes. But I will speak my truth. And I don't really care who does/doesn't like it. I don't care who agrees/disagrees with it. I will speak my truth. For someone to suggest or believe I should change for an "ideal"? (And lets be real. There are no "defining lines" in this whole shebang. No single person can claim to have *the* magic formula) No thank you. I've already changed. My convictions are my own, I don't really care what people think I "should" be. I don't mean that snobbily or flippantly. Its JMHO. YMMV
"Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway." - J. Wayne
Some of my betrayed mindset has been changed by the growth and actualization by many FWs here.
Aubrie, Floridaredman, to name a few. The mods and guides, good job to you all.
I've been terribly silent on here of late, mostly because I'm working on my pornography addiction and trying to make my family a more functional, cohesive environment. Work, family time, and bonding with Heart (my BW) take up my days and evenings, and I wouldn't have it any other way.
But something in this entire post and its subsequent fallout made me insert my own voice in here. I think we're all arguing for the same approach: that is to say, each person needs to hear something different, and no one needs to feel personally attacked or violated in a way that is undeserved. It is worth noting, however, that Narcissists almost always require some form of "personal attack" to start the process of being introspective -- no amount of polite talking or tenderfooting around an issue is going to get someone self-obsessed to budge an inch -- and, typically I've noticed, people with enough exposure on here tend to be able to identify their own.
People who have wrestled with narcissism remember what it took to get them to come down off their high horses, and they are well-intentioned when they attack people who come in sounding just like they themselves once did. Likewise, people who had half a clue and felt true remorse for a situation that got out of their control will probably find and hear out the voices of those who just needed some gentle nudging in the right direction. But like finds like in this case, which is what I honestly see a great deal of the time.
Hopefully, voices like yours will find your threads in the future and contribute in a way you all find mutually acceptable and beneficial!
"That's the thing about pain, it demands to be felt."