What you're doing is right, replacing them with positive thoughts.
When I was going through it, I tried "immersion", forcing myself to think them, I really don't know if it "worked" or they just ran their cycle.
It seems to me they are somewhat like a summer cold, if you take the medicine, you'll be better in 8-10 days, and if you don't take the medicine, you'll be better in 8-10 days.
I think, also, that they are themselves a coping mechanism that releases the stress incrementally upon us, so we can survive.
[This message edited by tfkeel at 1:18 AM, August 10th (Sunday)]
The thoughts just would not stop. Every tiny little thing would be a trigger. Literally several times an hour, and if I wasn't being triggered, my mind would "spin" all by itself. Days would go by thinking of little else.
Over time (now about 4 months past the biggest d-day) things have settled down. I've got a pending D which is stressful but the triggers aren't as strong. Maybe once a day or so I'll trigger on something and it passes in a few minutes.
It seems to me (but I don't have proof of this) that there's some sort of fixed amount of pain and you just have to work through it. If you try to block it out it will just come out later. Fine to try to get through a workday but don't expect that you'll be able to go too long without having to deal with it.
My WW hated this: she wanted to think everything was OK and not deal with my negative emotions and triggers. Though I tried to put on a happy face from time to time generally I didn't, and this was good I think -- repressing these feelings seems really unhealthy to me. (Also SI is a great place to share and process this stuff!)
Anyway, just wanted to let you know that even though it sucks, it's normal and it will get better.
Sample recovery plan, feedback welcome: http://www.survivinginfidelity.com/forums.asp?tid=539961
Just as you described, I put on my happy "mask" and try to look at the positive things we have now but the bad thoughts of her infidelity are stronger than the positive stuff. She seems to have an easier time dismissing/dealing with /forgetting her actions. If I were in her shoes I'd probably do the same thing.
[This message edited by djla2929 at 1:46 AM, August 10th (Sunday)]
I will admit, it does get better as the days go by. Well, not better, but you are triggered less and less. It doesn't happen half as often as it did when I first discovered the A, but it's still there from time to time. Night time is the worst for me. I have messed up dreams, it can be hard to sleep some nights, but it does become less frequent.
There is nothing wrong with what is going on with you, at least, from my limited experience, I wouldn't worry so much about it. There is nothing to really do about getting these thoughts out of your head. The only advice I can give is, limit any kind of contact with the WS. If at all possible, don't talk to them, don't see them. The longer you can do that, the better.
I wish it was so simple for me. We share a chiled, so I see my WW in person on a daily basis. When I don't see, I don't think about it. That's pretty much all I can give you. I'm still trying to find a better solution myself.
I am 10 weeks post D-day and have found that this aspect has certainly improved with time. (I would have gone out of my mind by now if that were not the case.) But I will say it's not strictly linear--I can feel pretty good for a few days, and then I'll have a day, or couple of days, that are wretched again. I suspect it's just that over time the wretched days will become fewer.
I find the endorphins released in exercise help a bit.
And the whole pretend things are all unicorns and fairies? Any time I do that it gets worse. My WH seems to understand he just has to suck it up, that I'm not going to do much happy mask.
Married 13 years
Trying to reconcile
When I trigger and the wife is around she does her best to soothe me (with a simple touch or hold my hand). But even that comforting sometimes leads to another trigger/negative thoughts of her saying or doing the same thing with the other dude. I might ask her to verbalized things when I trigger ("I love you....I'm committed to you...I choose you...thanks for a second chance....etc"). I think hearing and seeing her (re)commitment back to me seems reasonable...but sometimes it feels (to me) that' doing so is a burden to her. However, it feels (to me) as if she would want to bend over backwards to do whatever it takes to provide comfort when I'm in pain...I mean, she is the one who gave her body (my piece of mind, our sacred marriage bond/vows) to someone else. Here's to better days for everyone:)
[This message edited by djla2929 at 11:40 PM, August 10th (Sunday)]
I know how you feel. I am so sorry. The only thing that really helped me was time... sorry.
Failure to attempt is failure.
I still trigger. Yesterday I was signing my daughter up for swim lessons and the area where her lessons are is the area my husband would meet OW2 for sex. We live in an urban area, so for the most part I'm removed from the areas, but seeing that I'd have to be driving through that community just made me feel nauseas. I spent the rest of the day angry and raging.
I have a few approaches tot he triggers, one is to just feel. You can't move past a feeling if you aren't processing and feeling it. So feeling it... and then when the cycle starts to wane, i try to think "what can I get from this? what can I do with this pain?" And yeah there's nothing. But just asking in that way helps redirect my thoughts to what I *CAN* do. Sometimes I face the triggers head-on. Sometimes it's to say "look it happened, I can't change it happening. I can only control right now." And then shift to a different thought process or what I can do to help heal me.
It sucks, sorry :(