I am just wondering how long it takes to get revelations about what happened.
I don't think that there is a "typical" timeline. It's most important that he's putting in the work, and that YOU see him putting in the work. If he sincerely tries, I think answers will come.
For me, I knew about my depression for years before I finally went to the doctors. So I had a head start on some of my crap. But with my behavior during the A, the first three months or so didn't yield a lot. It was almost like training to learn how to talk to the C, and how to think about their questions. It was probably 4 months out before I did anything that my BW thought of as revelation.
There's a lot of embarrassment and regret there too, as well as not wanting to hurt my BH (with admitting feelings I had early on in the A that I know aren't real now and that I definitely don't feel now, and fear that he may think I still feel that way now).
I didn't really understand my feelings. I suspect many waywards have trouble with this. We often have just two feelings: happy and angry. We may confuse love with happy. We are often co-dependent, receiving our emotional cues from the others around us rather than owning our own feelings.
What I know now that the fog of the A has lifted: I didn't really love my LTA AP, though I said it thousands of times over the years. What I loved was the happy place of the bubble. I wanted to keep that a happy place. I didn't want conflict. I just wanted to get what I wanted, when I wanted it, however I wanted it. That's not love. That's selfishness. My AP gave me what I wanted. That too is not love. That's enablement. It was completely unhealthy. It looks good inside the bubble, but when those expectations aren't met in the real world, you get angry and bitter that your entitlements aren't being met by your BS, your family, your job, and the rest of the world. Affairs just mess up everything else in your life, no matter how much you think you compartmentalize things.
My BW is afraid I want to go back to the bubble. To her, it sounds pretty nice. I tell her I never, ever want to go back there. It's a trap. It's the One Ring of Sauron--it gives the bearer feelings of power but ruins him.
My BW asks whether I miss my AP, whether I have any unresolved feelings for her. No freakin' way. If I had any kind feelings towards her, they were summarily erased by her bad behavior after DDay--failing to let go, honor NC, knife-twisting messages to my BW, stalking me online (including here on SI), etc. I want nothing to do with her. I am embarrassed to admit that I told this woman that I loved her. I am ashamed that I hurt my BW in this way. I hate that my BW has to ruminate on this forever.
I was and am prepared to do anything for BH to make our R work. I'm trying hard to remain humble and to take my deserved licks, and BH has appreciated that. There are things I've done where he wasn't expecting it and hadn't thought to ask for it but I had done it anyway (given passwords etc.) My BH may still be numb/in denial/in shock, or perhaps my willingness to change and to do whatever it takes to help him get through this have helped.
I personally don't think your expectations are unrealistic, but everyone is different in their needs, and some (your WS) need to ask or at least try if you can't explicitly state what you need and make an effort to show they're in it.
Do you feel like if you told him what would help you that he'd comply? Or if he read something like "helping your spouse heal..." that he'd have some direction on that? He may have no idea.
For me, reading and researching on SI helped me tremendously in figuring out what best to do.
Claims she loves me, but won't go NC. Deletes texts. Claims she's just never good enough for me. That I've never said she's pretty (a lie) that I never make her feel wanted, everything's my fault (I cook, clean, do laundry, dishes, raise kids, work full time as the breadwinner, finishing my masters), all while she is on her iPhone 24/7 not helping.
Has refused IC / MC since 1st Dday. Refuses introspection. Refuses anything but "new" affection. Has never lived in real world, always on some alternate plain of existence whether its shopping non stop, hoarding, being a bad parent but claiming to be polly anna, etc.
Filled out paperwork for D, currently in awkward in house S. Is it ever possible for a WW in this position to ever hit bottom and fix their shit?
If so, do u believe u can still have real remorse?
Your WW is so deep in the fog right now she can't see what she's doing. It's the slow, cruel torture of your spouse and family and all of us waywards have been there at one point or another. The fact there are remorseful waywards on this site who are willing to fix their shit and working like crazy on R, proves that is is possible.
Is it possible for your WW? I honestly couldn't tell you. But I do know the best thing for you to do is get rid of your Give A Shit. Keep doing what you're doing. If she comes out of the fog and turns things around, you can decide if R is a possibility for you. But if she doesn't then you know you're in a good place anyway.
Chin up. Unwavering. Fight. I can do this.
I can't really see that any wayward who is under the impression that it's ok for emotional voids be filled by other people rather than going to IC and working hard on ones self is capable of remorse.
Your husband is appreciative and thankful for what the AP did for him and how they made him feel? That's not remorse either.
[This message edited by BrokenButTrying at 4:12 AM, July 28th (Monday)]
About two days after Dday I found SI and started reading the healing library and the posts on the wayward side. I had my first A-ha moment that evening when I realised the reality of the situation, I was using the AP to make myself feel better. Once I realised that my A wasn't about the AP I reached indifference pretty quickly and thoughts about the AP as a person stopped.
Now I only think of him in terms of a tool I used to have my A.
There are many waywards who go through long periods of withdrawal from the AP. I haven't experienced that soi can't offer much advice but hopefully someone will be along who can.
You are trying to apply rational and logical thought to your husband's behaviour but in all honesty there just isn't any. A's and the following wayward fog are not rational, they are not logical and they don't make sense.
I cannot tell you what was going on in your husband's head other than he felt entitled and justified at that time. He convinced himself he was in love. The comment about not throwing your marriage away just for sex is just his self delusion... he's not a monster, he wouldn't throw a marriage away just for sex, so it must be love
He needs to go to IC, dig deep and figure out why he created justification in his own mind for an A. We cannot answer his why's for him, he has to do that himself. And even then, it won't make much sense to you.
I am not trying to be codependent here, as I have come a long way since my first D-day.
I know that I can't control my WW, but she still is, in my opinion, absolutely lost when it comes to her affairs...and trying to deal with them. Personally, I think that she has been avoiding this since the beginning---although she claims otherwise. She ordered a couple of infidelity books online, but did it without much research...and now has two books that explain why women were not meant to be monogamous in life. Needless to say, these won't be the basis of her rebuilding blocks.
She made a profile here, and has looked at the books recommended in the Wayward forum.
My question to you, is what book(s) would you recommend? I will give you my perceived insight as to where her head is, along with a quick overview:
We met in our late teens, and married in our early twenties. We both worked, by I work long hours, and six days a week. She is diagnosed with a congenital heart disease(hereditary), and can only work until 1999. She was a maternity nurse, who loved her job, and was very good at it. She always knew what she wanted to be, and it hurt her greatly to have to give that up.
But we had two young boys at the time, and she threw her energy into that role. As they got older, and out of elementary school, she had, in my opinion, some more loss of worth. After a bariatric surgery in early 2000s, she discovered that a glass of wine helped ease her stomach after a meal. This, of course, morphed into full fledged alcoholism over the next years. I, unfortunately, just ignored all this as I stayed in my little work/marriage world.
In the later 2000s, her resentments for me grew. I was a workaholic(probably)--60-70 hours a week average. I wasn't the engaged father in my kid's life. Don't get me wrong, I didn't ignore them, but I didn't take them out for sports, and our vacations were maybe every other year. This has always been my shortcoming. But I was loving, steady, and honest---just not a great communicator.
In 2009, my WW then decided she will get attention elsewhere. She joined AFF in May(I believe), and was having physical encounters by September. D-Day#1 came on 9/19/09, and we struggled until June of 2011. By this time, we had gone to MC, had a another D-day, and had a sort of limbo/false R.
At this time, I really felt that things improved. She went to detox for her drinking. She actively threw herself into AA. She pursued her sobriety feverishly...at least in my opinion. At this point, I was heading to divorce, but I would up in awe of how hard she was working on herself. She claimed that the drinking warped her thinking, and she opened a terrible door to infidelity. As much as I wouldn't accept/believe this to be true, over time, I started to change my mind. We were getting closer. She always(without my demands) tried to make me feel safe--she would call me regularly, tell me her plans for the day, text me, and left me very little room to imagine wrongdoings.
Until July 3rd of this year, I thought we were virtually reconciled. She seemed much more like her old self, and seemed happy in our direction.
On 7/3/14, I picked up her phone that fell down alongside the bed when she was asleep. I always had access to her phone...and have used it, but I decided to check the texts. Needless to say, I uncovered a 2.5 year EA/PA LTA with another AA member(a non-regular). It appears that this affair started about 6-9 months post sobriety.
So, while we very well may be on the path to divorce, she does seem to be looking for SOME answers. While she is all over the map--some days wanting to try to save the marriage, other days being defensive--she has asked me for help. Although this is her shit to fix...and I know this...I would like to try to pick book that may have the most affect on her. Obviously, a book on boundaries would help, but I am hoping there is a book with the same type of philosophy as her AA books and teachings. She has really shown energy in that area, although she obviously wasn't truly working the steps---as she wasn't really being authentic in all aspects of her life. She believes that she has empathy for me, but I can assure you that she does not---and this really frustrates her. She believes otherwise. And I can't do anything about that, except assure her by examples that she has no idea of the damage that she has done to me.
Helping Your Spouse Heal From an Affair is a book that I believe may help with empathy down the road, but I am hoping that the first book that she reads can really strike a chord with her present mindset--confusion about how she has reached this point. Any suggestions?
I appreciate your time.
By the way, while she did make a profile here, to my dismay, has not participated. If there is one thing that I asked of her, it was to give an honest effort in the Wayward forum. I know that I can only lead a horse to water, but if she would invest a real effort there, I KNOW that she could gain a lot of much needed advice.
I am not trying to save my marriage...I am a big boy, and have been here for years. but what I would hope to see, would be an investment of her time in trying to not only work on her sobriety from alcohol, but from infidelity.
All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
Acceptance the Marriage is over: 7/2/14
Heading for D
[This message edited by plainpain at 1:54 PM, July 27th (Sunday)]
Now that I know better, I know my APs did nothing for me. They helped fuel my wrong thinking. I told them how badly BW was treating me, or how unfair work was, or how an A was OK. And my APs agreed with me.
We often say that the AP is just a mirror of ourselves. The AP just shows our own holes. They do not fill them.
I understand thethinking that AP helped me in some way. I would talk to AP about my problems. So I would be tempted to say she filled that need. But that's not true. I should have talked to BW about those things. By going to AP, I made a bigger hole to fill.
You cannot make your WW read and heal herself. I don't know of any books that will help specifically with your situation, but even if you suggested them to her, would she read them?
Detach, do the 180 and focus on yourself.
I know I can't force her, and I am not trying to do so. She outright asked me for help on choosing some books....being that I have been on this site for some time.
She ordered (2) books online from Amazon, and I couldn't be more disappointed with their content. She questioned their theories, and when I read them, I knew that they could be more harmful than helpful. Again, I am not trying to be codependent here, and am not *forcing* her to do anything. I am just trying to help with a request that she specifically made to me.
What I would really WANT her to do, would be to post regularly in the Wayward forum, but like you stated, I can't make her do anything.
I can only make suggestions---and I am not even going to do that. I mentioned it once after my last D-day, and that is it. I have my own work to do. If she asks for help, I will offer advice---but beyond that, she is on her own....as am I.
This is the book thread over on the wayward side.
Send her the link so she can have a look and order any that she feels would be helpful to her.