This fell off and can't be bumped. Reported by request...hope it helps others.
I've been on this site about 2 1/2 years. Lurked about six months before that. The thing that struck me was the "remorse rollercoaster" I've seen so much. I never experienced that even when I hit the full effects of the pain I caused myself. I chalked it up to the fact I'm different in many emotional areas than those I see on SI.
As I talked more, in real life with others, and some SI friends here, I started seeing some that experienced it the same way so at least felt more comfortable. I've had a few members PM me in the past questioning whether I was. I'd question myself too.
Was talking with a trainer that was giving a team building class at work and got on the topic of how to help an employee facilitate change in a process or behavior that was counter productive. He'd done some work with criminals and recidivism and brought up "true remorse". He was telling me that studies have been done showing that an individual displaying "false remorse" many times goes through much more dramatic emotional swings...anger, disgust, fear, contempt, even happiness, while some of those that truly felt it appeared more neutral.
For me, when the enormity of my actions hit there was a great deal to process. A complete internal pull of all my resources inward to accept what I'd done and to sit with it for a bit. I'd have failed most BS's test right off the bat. I said very little, was very quiet, and distant. I had to work through what I was feeling and the intensity I was feeling it. It surprised me and actually paralyzed me for a bit.
I'd have been the last thing anyone would want to see from a "truly" remorseful wayward yet the work being done was very real.
I'm like that when I find out I hurt someone else's feelings. When I apologize I mean every word and do what I need to do to make sure it never happens again. It doesn't look like a hallmark card though. My SO has seen that. I also don't need apologies when I've been hurt. I know from the person's actions whether it will happen again.
I'm not posting as a spokesman for wayward's at all and know that everyone is individual. Just hope some don't assume that because their WS isn't showing what they thought they'd be seeing and should see that they aren't doing the work and not appreciating the enormity of their actions. It may be exactly because they are that they're seeing what they're seeing.
This shit takes time and a lot of very hard painful work. When some BS's find out the person they thought they could trust betrayed them it levels them, shatters all they knew and believed. Some of us go through a similar thing and are leveled by the fact we could do that to ourselves, much less someone that we promised to love and cherish.
I'm not posting this to elicit sympathy or empathy from BS's and would not even be comfortable with it. It seems so ridiculous to feel those feelings when I was the one that was making the very choices that caused this pain. That, in and of itself was a huge bowl of suck. I actually divorced myself and wanted nothing to do with me for quite a while. Gone was my inner dialog I used to enjoy and find so much comfort. Stayed away from friends, couldn't do things I enjoyed. Forget even trying to read a book or watch a movie. I wasn't there at all. I was in mourning.
The gift of R is something I still struggle with accepting from myself and had to find grace in order to even begin it. Luckily the HB has been fun. Me: 37
'til the roof comes off. 'til the lights go out. 'til my legs give out, can't shut my mouth