Brother, you're very close to D-Day, so take comfort in the fact that when most of us were where you are now, our heads were still spinning, too. If you can find the time to regularly re-read this entire thread in the coming weeks and months, you'll begin to see that the consistent advice here is a response to the aforementioned script, and something you'll likely come to terms with as you begin to heal.
And so to clarify my previous post, and answer your question: no, crying isn't weakness. It's normal; it means you're a loving, open, non-calloused person of integrity that has been deeply wounded. It's an absolutely normal and necessary response to severe emotional chaos.
My advice wasn't about hiding your emotions from your WW so you don't push her further away - although that will be a benefit. It was about forcing yourself to focus in the middle of all this shit, and apply some degree of discipline to your thinking at this critical moment that will help you do the right things.
(Forgive my aside here, but the very best analogy I have, personally, is from training I had years ago, learning to fly an airplane, and the proper reaction to recover from various spins. The previously-stable, comfortable aircraft departs from controlled flight, is pointed directly at the ground, descending rapidly, and spinning. The natural reaction of the novice pilot is panic and lock-up; the sudden chaos is immobilizing.
But not doing something guarantees disaster. Pilots are taught to immediately choose a point of focus - look at the instrument panel, and then move the controls in a certain way that might seem counterintuitive. The natural reaction - to pull back hard on the yoke to get the nose up - is exactly the wrong thing to do.
Focus doesn't solve the problem, but you can't do what needs to be done to survive without it).
I agree with you more than you know - that fighting to save your M takes strength and courage, too. Far more than quitting does - but no one here is suggesting you quit. Nor am I suggesting you're being weak simply by being in love with your WW, or wanting to preserve the life as your son now knows it. Hardly - those things take incredible strength, so please don't be too hard on yourself. This is all very new, and frightening.
Find a focus. Decide that you're not going to cry in front of your WW - let it all come later, perhaps. Realize that while your role as a husband has been taken from you (it has, at least temporarily), your role as a father includes a new challenge, and a different kind of strength.
You're certainly up to it. You sound a lot like me, in many ways...as I was, codependent, used to putting my kids first, my W second, myself last - emotionally, at the very least. When she cheated, I didn't rearrange the order. You cannot save her, fix her, or pull her back. That's up to her. So for now, she goes to the bottom of the list...counterintuitive, I know, because if you don't save the M, who will?
I "fought" for my marriage for 18 months of false R, and in retrospect, it only ensured its demise in the end. And perhaps ironically, I'm a better father today, and my kids are doing well.
I wish you strength and peace. Keeping coming to SI, and keep posting. You're not alone.
[This message edited by jagged at 10:01 AM, May 6th (Tuesday)]
without no contact, honesty, and transparency ... remorse will NEVER arrive.
with no contact, honesty, and transparency ... remorse MAY arrive. it also may not.
from 09/11 - 05/13
2 ONS, 10 sexting partners, 1 LT EA/PA
??/06/13 DD/1 - admits to LT EA, begin false R.
01/13/14 DD/2 - LTA was PA.
01/18/14 DD/3 - sexting 5 guys.
01/19/14 DD/4 - 2 ONS with different guys
Thanks for finding the time to post. I really appreciate it. You and I are defiantly not the experts, but there are lots of people here who have lots of experience to share. It kills me to listen to it most of the time. But I stop and ask myself if my dad were here today, what would he say? And thats the answer I listen to. I read your thread every day, you've had lots of people give you advice that I've tried to take onboard too. One of the benefits from this forum I think is defiantly building a support system of PEOPLE THAT KNOW. I feel and totally understand your comments when you still clearly love your WW. Thats exactly how I felt at DD1. I've managed to find a little more courage this time to make changes to look after me and my DS. I had to face it, I 'niced' him back the first time. I carpet swept it the second time. Enough is enough. I can also see everyones efforts for you to not have to go through this sort of cycle. It hurts. MORE. I'm also going to post this on your thread, because I Get It.
DD1 May 2013
DD2 April 2014
Currently wondering how someone who vowed so much, can care so little
@CantSeeInTheDark: you're very welcome. About time I unwrapped myself from my woes, just for a moment, and gave a little back. It means a lot to know I'm not on my own. I'll be sure to check your thread (and others) from now on. Much to learn & to digest.
This place has been a Godsend
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
I KNOW that, given a lot of time, my wife WILL come round.
And that is why you will fail Saveus. You really dont know if your wife will come around.
Why do I say that?
Because you are the problem Saveus.
Your wife has cheated multiple times my friend.
Your wife has lied to you multiple times.
Your wife continues to put the OM before you, your son and your marriage.
You have received some good advice Saveus.
You need to come to the realization that nothing will change until you decide to change it.
You need to take control of "you" Saveus.
No crying in front of your wife. Do it somewhere else where she cannot see you or hear you.
She does not care about you at this time. I know you know this.
Go see a lawyer. Know your rights. Do not tell her you are doing this. Shock her.
Now here comes the radical part. Since she is still in contact with him do yourself a favor.
Pack her stuff in black plastic bags.
Do it while she is at the event with the OM and all the kids.
Then meet them there. And tell them that you have dropped all her stuff off at his house. That she is no longer welcome in your familys home.
Tell her that you will meet her later this week to review the separation agreement/custody arrangement.
Tell her that you refuse to share her and if she wants to be with this 3x a loser then you wish her luck.
Kiss your son goodbye, turn around and walk away.
That is what you should do. That is a consequence your wife truly deserves.
Because right now you have no marriage nor a wife.
She did not invite you to this party but you can certainly end it.
[This message edited by happyman64 at 6:19 PM, May 6th (Tuesday)]
i want to say i feel so sad for you, because you are being so nice and loving and forgiving and being badly mistreated by your wife. I sat with my mouth gaping after reading your posts about your wife. After reading other people's stories, i want to crown your wife the worst of all WWs.
Let us know what steps you end up taking. Take care.
1) Save the marriage. This is out of your hands. Your wife knows what she needs to do. So far, she seems disinterested.
2) Secure your son's future.
3) Take care of yourself.
So, how does scorched earth affect these goals?
1) You have a Star-Wars Death Star shot at having this "wake her up" and scare her into behaving. And a much larger chance that it will accelerate the divorce process.
2) You might scare your son, too. Certainly won't help him.
3) If this ends up being a contentious divorce, judges hate this stuff. It's illegal, and judges tend to focus on what's best for the kids.
On the other hand, scorched earth is really good for generating ego kibbles. Yeah, you really showed her. You won't stand for horrible, cheating wives.
Make no mistake about it, your wife sucks. You know this. But the damage is already done. Your sucky wife has already caused enormous harm. The worst is behind you. Being cheated on is painful and humiliating. She certainly deserves to have her belongings packed up, set on fire and set afloat on the river Styx. I don't see the point, though.
Back in year one of my experience, I sometimes wished I had scorched the earth a little. I wished I had reacted quietly and calmly when I found out about the affair. Maybe taken a week to evaluate the situation before I told her I knew. I wished I had cut off her credit cards and cleaned out our bank account. I wished I had taken her brand new affair cell phone and smashed it into a thousand pieces. I wished I had responded with devastating ironic humor whenever she brought up her idiotic reasoning for her behavior.
But now, a few years removed... what's important? I couldn't save the marriage. Whatever had led her to cheat killed the marriage about a year before I knew about it. There might have been a Death Star shot out there somewhere, but I sure couldn't find it. And I know now that the cheating would have been a deal-breaker for me. Once reconciliation is on the table, you have to find a way to forgive, and that isn't easy. I feel better for having tried, and by the time we negotiated the final settlement, I was OK with divorcing.
Our son has a good relationship with both of us. He didn't have to witness fighting, or his parents trying to punish each other (the kids always get punished more from this). It's the best of a bad situation from his perspective.
Instead of having a few ego kibbles for standing up for myself a little better and making her feel a little more cheap and dirty, I have a divorce settlement that's pretty much fair. Never had to deal with explaining anything to a judge. Never had to talk to a policeman or justify doing something hurtful.
Ego kibbles are temporary. Keep your eyes on survival.
I survived. Six years out, I'm now married for almost a year to someone far more beautiful and far more honorable. And my ex is now just someone I barely recognize. She has her shiny new partner (they got married fairly quickly). She hasn't had to spend a minute adjusting to the loss of a marriage, but, on the other hand, she hasn't had to work on herself.
It sounds like you probably won't save this marriage. I don't think it makes you a doormat to keep trying. I don't think, either, that you want to accept life with a wife who cheated and probably will cheat again. Trying to save it has some benefit. But I hope you are, somewhere, beginning to deal with the fact that you probably are facing divorce in the near future.
Your immediate goal should be to remove yourself from infidelity. Once you are out of its grip, then, and only then IMO, can you then make choices about the marriage
remember your history? remember Chamberlain and Hitler? Chamberlain chose to appease Hitler and came back shouting "Peace in our time!" No one thinks Chamberlain was strong now. He's regarded as too weak to make a difficult decision and too naive to see what he was dealing with.
Don't think to yourself that a person is strong for being able to endure humiliation and pain. a strong person stands up for themselves and what is right.
I'm sorry to say that, but don't convince yourself your being strong by appeasing her. You're just kidding yourself.
again, i know this is hard. we all do. that's why we're giving you our advice.
[This message edited by mike7 at 2:53 AM, May 7th (Wednesday)]
she can chose to have her lies, her affair, her secrets. its HER choice and if she chooses these things there is NOTHING you can do about it. period. thats where you are right now. see clearly - her choosing to continue contact with her affair partner is choosing him.
if she chooses to have her lies, her affair, and her secrets ... then a consequence of her choice is that cant have you because you arent going to accept her continuing to violate the promises she made to you (her wedding vows).
yes, i know it is mind boggling that you need to inform your wife that her continuing to have an affair isnt acceptable to you. however, read up on a few of your previous posts because (gently) it isnt just her that needs to accept and understand this ... its you too. you need to accept that her choosing her affair, her lies, and her secrets over you isnt acceptable to you. or ... you can decide that it IS acceptable. in which case where does that slippery slope end ... with her bringing him over to the house to have sex with him while you sulk and watch tv?
where do you draw the line on what is and is not acceptable to you? where are your boundaries? decide and then inform your wife. immediately.
however, i would suggest NOT putting a timeline or deadline on implementing the consequences of her decision. dont paint yourself into a corner.
you can implement the consequences today, tommorrow, next week, or whenever. you cant undo packing her trash and throwing it in the yard whereas you can pack her trash and throw into the yard at any point in the future ... or decide not to do that at all. do you see what im saying? leave your options open.
part of leaving your options open IS going to talk to a lawyer. you dont need to decide anything while talking to the lawyer BUT does provide you with information to make an informed choice at the time of your choosing.
the talk with your wife where you inform her of your boundaries will be a tough one. your wife will flat out refuse. count on it. its a play from the cheating spouse handbook. she will say "lets go ahead and get a divorce then". count on it. another play from the handbook. she will also tell you that she isnt making a choice and needs time to think about it. thats another play and when she uses it be prepared to respond with "not choosing is making a choice, its choosing to continue your lies, your cheating, your secrets, and your affair.
remember that phrase "your lies, your cheating, your secrets, and your affair" ... use it OVER AND OVER during the talk. also keep using the word "choice" when it comes to those things. because she DOES have a choice.
you have to hold firm during this talk. you will need balls of steel. this is the rubicon. its (to hat tip to mike7) chamberlain and hitler. you need to establish this boundary and lay out the consequences.
you cant accept anything less than no contact, ending the affair, and transparency - if you do ... kiss goodbye any hope of a reconciliation. period. it needs to be "all of them". for instance, you cant accept the end of the affair but continuing contact or no transparency. if she offers one or more but not all ... thank her, tell her its a big first step for her, and that it still leaves a few more steps for her to make and then go right back into discussing them. you NEED the end of the affair, no contact, and transparency. period.
if she chooses ANYTHING except immediate no contact, ending the affair, and transparency then tell her "im sorry that you feel your lies, your cheating, and your affair are more important to you than me, our child, our family, our relationship, and your self respect. i wont try to pretend i can understand the thought process or decision making that led to this choice. when we got married we made a series of commitments and promises to each other. your choice to break those commitments and vows by choosing your lies, your cheating, and your affair over me, our child, our relationship, our marriage, and our family pains me deeply. I know that you know what you are doing is wrong and that you know your choice is also wrong. you are a better person than this choice but i can not make you do the right thing and i cant make your choice for you. i can only communicate what is and isnt acceptable to me. your choice to choose your lies, your cheating, your secrets, and your affair will force me to reconsider my commitment to our relationship and our marriage."
the effects of this talk might take a day or a few days to sink in on her. be receptive to listening to her if she wants to talk about it. do NOT waver in communicating over and over that its her choice.
while waiting to see if it snaps her out of the cloud...
STOP having sex with her.
STOP crying around her.
STOP begging and pleading.
STOP bringing up the affair.
STOP enabling the affair by doing things that make it easier for her to continue it.
let her think about these things for a few days. if she hasnt snapped out of the fog after a few days you can then begin to consider the next steps.
Remember, there are (2) goals, and in reality, (1) proper approach:
Goal #1--Get yourself out of infidelity
Goal #2--Save your marriage
The approach--Stand up for what is right. Don't compromise the good values that describe who you are.
In writing, it is that simple. In reality...
If you stand up for yourself, if you refuse to accept poor behavior and boundaries, if you work on bettering yourself for the future, if you try to be the best role model for your child---then why would you want to alter that?
You say that you don't want to give up without a fight. But doing the above steps is the best fight that you can offer. She may not ever come around, but at least you would be the authentic one. You would be the one who was willing to fight for your family....just not willing to demean yourself to "save" it.
No scorched earth---just authenticity.
All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
D-Day: 9/18/09 D-Day#2: 2/19/10 The Marriage Killer: 6/6/11
Heading for D
Tactical Primer: http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=235051
Before You Say Reconcile: http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=406548
Great Posts for Newbies to Read: http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=361740
Your WW will sit on the fence for as long as you allow it. She doesn’t want to go to counselling because she doesn’t want to a) be embarrassed b) have you know the truth c) give up her BF d) allow you any control over anything and, the big one, e) face reality. There are plenty of GOOD counsellors specialising in infidelity. Here are two sites to find ones in your area.
http://www.bacp.co.uk/ (click “find a therapist”)
I certainly think individual counselling will help your WW.
I am another who says “see a lawyer”. It lays down the groundwork if reconciliation goes belly up and you have to begin divorce proceedings. It becomes one thing less to crawl around your brain at 3am. You will know your rights and likely outcome. Pop into the Citizens Advice Bureau for some leaflets, free advice and possibly a list of practising divorce solicitors. Some practices offer the first 30-60 mins for free, but whether a free consultation or not, take all financial details with you when you go. Seeing a solicitor doesn’t necessarily mean divorce, but it does give you some peace of mind. Do it and then mentally file it away unless or until you need it.
Re-read Bigger’s posts. He’s spot on.
ETA: Use a friend or your parents as the c/o mailing address for your solicitor.
[This message edited by UKgirl at 9:36 AM, May 7th (Wednesday)]
I know I've let this go too far. But any last minute advice? We're going to talk when I get home shortly. I must resist the urge to beg & plead, I've learnt that much from you guys.
But any last minute advice?
READ MY POST. Then tell your wife:
You are totally free to go see OM. You can move in with him. You can play house with him. You can DO ANYTHING YOU WANT.
BUT NOT AS MY WIFE.
By going there you are clearly telling me that you do not want to be my wife so I will simply assume the marriage is over…. (and so on and so on).
BUT NOT AS MY WIFE.
By going there you are clearly telling me that you do not want to be my wife so I will simply assume the marriage is over…. (and so on and so on).
Then you start the processes I and numerous others have told you.
Savedus – This is NOT WHAT YOU WANT.
But… this is what you have to deal with.
This is your burning house and no amount of wishing it was something else will kill the fire.
We're going to talk when I get home shortly
Nope, don't do it. She's made her choice. I really get the feeling she's enjoying making you dance. She still *knows* that even if she leaves you will take her back.
Can you get a visit to a lawyer in before you see her?
If you must talk to her, re-read Biggers advice. It was spot on. Tell her you want the M, but aren't willing to share, then cut her off.
Honestly, if I had a do-over with my first wife, I would have told her to leave, leave the child and go enjoy life. I(You) are too valuable to be treated like this.
ETA T/J Bigger, cross post. T/J
[This message edited by 5454real at 12:16 PM, May 7th (Wednesday)]
Listen we all wanted our M's to work after Dday. But you cannot control her, and you certainly can't make decisions for her.
YOU CAN make sure her bad decisions result in an unpleasant experience for her.