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God, where to start

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MyMe2017 posted 9/12/2017 16:40 PM

I am at such a loss right now. I am married, but have been in a LTA for almost three years. I don't want to end the LTA, it makes me happy. I want to end the marriage. The OM is the love of my life, of this I am certain. We met over 15 years ago, had a PA/EA for several months before jobs took us to different places, but we always kept in touch. Reconnected through mutual work in SEP2014. I have been living apart from H for nearly that long, different homes in different states. My SO (the OM) also lives in a different state, but we've managed to keep the relationship going through frequent visits - usually him coming to me, but I go there occasionally too, or we meet somewhere in between.

Our relationship isn't perfect - it's built on a lie, for one thing, because his family doesn't know I have a H. But we love each other, have a wonderful time together, and he's helped me through some really tough times. I have helped him too, although his lack of ambition sometimes frustrates me (he does not have a job or a house, lives with his parents). He talks of going back to school, getting a job, returning to military status, etc, but never takes action, even though I set the stage for him whenever I can, and try to help him whenever I can. He appreciates when I push him - we inspire each other to be better people.

I'm certain my H doesn't have a clue, and I've known for years that I need to end this marriage. Part of why I haven't is my fear of lack of commitment from SO. For some reason, I decided to stray, again, this time cheating on not only the H but the messed up is that? I was at school for several weeks, a place where women are outnumbered something like 10-1. The attention was intoxicating, and it went to my head. To my eternal regret, stupidly I ended up getting involved in PA with a fellow student. It lasted a few weeks, not quite as long as the course, and we were sexually involved 5 times over 4 different days. When I returned home, my SO was waiting for me, we'd planned to spend several days together immediately upon my completion of school. On the last night together, I confessed to him. Part of me thought he wouldn't mind, because one of the odd things about our relationship is that he's always embraced my love of sex, used to think my former escapades were sexy...he used to tell me he never wanted to deny me anything, including pleasure, so if I felt the urge to "scratch an itch" when he wasn't in town, he was okay with it, as long as I didn't get emotionally involved, and didn't bring the OM to my home. Although I never acted on this "permission" before, I took him at that word.

Apparently I completely misunderstood the terms of those conditions, because when I "scratched the itch" while at school, he felt I betrayed him, and us. I know this is such a mess, and I desperately want to make it right.

We've talked a number of times in the past several weeks. Some days are good...I flew up to his town for the Labor Day weekend, and for the most part we had a wonderful visit, reconnected and talked and cried, and made plans for the future.

I thought we had turned a corner and were on our way to healing, but he will randomly call me late at night with another hateful, hurtful question about my A, and the answer hurts him. I don't want to hurt him. I'm so deeply ashamed of what I've done, and I desperately want to make things right with him.

Our last conversation, last night, he seems ready to end things altogether. I have no dignity left where he is concerned, I beg and cry and plead for forgiveness, another chance, etc. I try to get him to remember and focus on the many positive things in our relationship, but he says he can't stop the negative thoughts from coming in, the ugly images of me with this OM. He thinks I am polyamorous, but I disagree. I think I have a sexual compulsion. I have a terrible time setting boundaries, stemming from years of physical sexual abuse as a child. He thinks I cannot be alone, although I have essentially lived alone for nearly the past three years. I like being in a relationship, part of a team...that's one of the things missing from my marriage.

I don't know if anyone can help us/me. I have directed him to this site, to see what other people are experiencing, in hopes he won't feel so alone, will find a safe place to vent (I fully intend to respect the privacy restrictions on this matter). I also need him to see that others have gone through similar things and come out stronger and together. That's what I want with him. I am horribly ashamed, deeply sorry, and I desperately want to move past this and reconcile with him, my soul mate. That necessarily means finding the courage to end my marriage and face whatever comes.

I am in IC, have been for many years, for a multitude of issues. Abusive mother, absent father, childhood sexual abuse, sexual assault as an adult 2 years ago...

smokenfire posted 9/12/2017 16:54 PM

Welcome, and thank you for sharing.

I would strongly suggest two things you probably won't like very much. You need a different IC and you need to learn how to "be" by yourself. You need to define who you are without a man, just you, alone to face your fears. Until you do that, you will continue to chase men, even when you are in a committed relationship because you are compelled to do so, even when you don't want to. Time to learn to stand on your own two feet, face your fears and get whole.

Healthy well adjusted people do not stuff other human beings into the holes in their soul. They fix them.


Your husband probably feels much like you do in regard to you and your AP. Even if he doesn't know, he knows something is off and you have zero empathy for him, utterly zero. You stay married to him lest you end up alone. You're quite in touch with your feelings, your pain, etc. but quite blind when it comes to how you wound others. You deeply regret your affair on AP because he's not having it - not because you hurt him, but because now he wants to end your relationship. The window into your life screams at full volume, "I can not be alone. I will be with whomever I want, as long as I am not alone".

Another point, you said that you and AP inspire each other to be better people. Yet, he lives with his parents, is not actively pursing improving his life and does not even have a job. I would venture to say ya'll are in your 30s. That's a sorry place to be for that age and speaks volumes about his character. You've cheated on both. Is that your best version of you or him? You're in denial about the reality of this situation.

I would bet money (and I don't gamble) that you and OM have "synchronized" insanity. Whatever is broken in both of you lines up and makes perfect sense to you because it's familiar. That's why you can't let go. It's going to stay like unless you get really serious about fixing what is wrong in you.

I understand being raised by wolves more so then the average person. Those issues make it more challenging, but I am living proof if you commit to real lasting change, your life and happiness will be in a much better place.

Right now, you are using other human beings, which is not only a bad idea, it only works temporarily. The pain will return, time to switch out men.

I would recommend you look into codendency, particularly ross rosenberg on youtube.


I was sexually abused for ten years by multiple people. Your experience with these multiple relationships is not unique, but at the same time, abuse is not an excuse. I was demon spawn when I was young and I've worked my ass off getting better. You can have a life where you are with someone or not by your own choosing, not because you "HAVE" to, it's rather amazing to be in that position.

I would personally recommend you find an IC that specializes in working with children. They are the best in that they "get it" and you don't have to waste a lot of your therapy time "explaining what things are like".

[This message edited by smokenfire at 8:05 PM, September 12th (Tuesday)]

Greeneyesbluezy posted 9/12/2017 18:51 PM

I am deeply sorry for the trauma you have suffered as a child and as an adult.

Are you honest with your IC as to how you are living your life now?

You should be honest with your husband and leave the marriage. Your deceit to him has to end.

I am not experienced enough to offer more advice, but I urge you to intensify your therapy to see why you are engaging in such destructive behaviors.

I wish you well.

Lucidiylost posted 9/12/2017 19:15 PM


You might want to put a stop sign on your thread.

Darkness Falls posted 9/12/2017 19:17 PM

Or, if it's too triggery, people can just keep scrolling. Plus it's not possible for the original poster to add the stop sign once a post has been submitted.

[This message edited by Darkness Falls at 7:18 PM, September 12th (Tuesday)]

DaddyDom posted 9/12/2017 19:24 PM

There is a thread in the "I can relate" forum called "Sexual Abuse Survivors/Spouses". It is so large and so long that it is on part 3 currently and still going. I would suggest that you read through some of that and perhaps join in, as you will find kindred spirits there, others who were raped, molested, traded, abused and neglected as children. I am one of them as well.

What you are going through is pretty common for CSA survivors. While we may not realize it at the forefront of our minds, we often suffer from low self esteem, boundary issues and poor coping skills. We grow up in a world where we are taught that inappropriate sexual relationships are "normal". And just like everyone else, when things get tough, we seek out our "normal" to comfort ourselves.

You cheated on your husband, and then cheated on the man you claim is your "true love" with some guy you just met in school. That's not how love works. I think you were never taught what real love is and how it works. You are just repeating what you were taught. Unfortunately however, for your husband and the other men in your life, you have turned from the victim to the abuser. As my wife says to me, "Hurt people hurt people."

This cycle of use and abuse needs to stop, for the sake of your BS, the OM, and yourself. As others have suggested I would urge you to seek out a new IC. I would also look for a CSA support group if one exists near you, and if not, look for a SAA group as you will likely find many people there with similar backgrounds.

There is a lot of work to be done. You've taken a great first step by coming to SI. Now it is time to clean up the mess that you have made, and to realize that only you can fill that black hole inside of you that is desperate for love and attention.

moralhighground posted 9/12/2017 20:01 PM

I think you're dealing with so many different issues right now that you are not seeing the big picture of what you put into words.

The first thing to do is start being honest with everyone. Including yourself. If you know you don't want to be married, that's a good place to start. There's nothing in the marriage for either of you, your lives are already almost completely separate. Be sensitive to your husband and honest with him. You need to understand that what you are doing to him is wrong, because he doesn't know these other men are a part of his marriage. When he knows the full truth you are free to pursue whatever relationship you want.

The second thing to do is to start talking clearly about your expectations BEFORE you get involved with anyone else. Give the other person a chance to say what is okay with them first.

I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that having a serious relationship with the OM is not gonna work out. Firstly, he's inconsistent. He doesn't mind you being with your husband but he wants to break up over this other guy? He has no job, is not in school, and lives with his parents? You will be taking care of this guy forever. You're both very selfish. This makes for thrilling affairs but not very good long-term relationships. Don't live with him, don't merge finances with him, even if he forgives you, which he may never do. That's up to him.

If you want to keep dating him, you need to ask HIM what he needs to see. Keep in mind that he is as likely to cheat on you as you are to cheat on him. You may think he would NEVER. He could. He doesn't care about your marriage. What are the chances he will be faithful to you? Statistically they are not good.

You know you need help. That's the first step. Good luck to you. I hope you are able to fully understand when you get on the other side of all this.

babbu posted 9/12/2017 20:55 PM

I don't think he is as clueless as you think he is. This is truly terrible what you're doing to this man after driving off his child.

Jesusismyanchor posted 9/12/2017 23:24 PM

How about start with the truth in your life to your H . Do
Your H a favor and let him go. I doubt your M is very good anyway. I hope you get the help you need.

Wool94 posted 9/13/2017 05:38 AM

Why are you separated from your husband?

TimelessLoss posted 9/13/2017 08:15 AM

I'm not sure you even meet the guidelines to post her. You're remorseful about cheating on your affair partner. Not your H.

WS or OP's that are remorseful and committed back to their relationship are welcome to post and find guidance and support while repairing the damage they've caused.
I expect that it will be viewed that it's all ok because you are separated from your H.

DaddyDom posted 9/13/2017 10:03 AM

T/J, but TimelessLoss, where did you pull that guideline quote from? I looked in the main forum page and it says,

A forum for all Former WS's who have ended or trying to end their affairs and are striving to reconcile

I also looked in the main Guidlines page and the descriptions of the other forums and didn't see that quote in any of them?

I'm not arguing it, I'm just curious where it came from as I can't seem to find it?

Thanks, sorry for the T/J

HellFire posted 9/13/2017 10:08 AM

That sentence that was quoted is the very first sentence under the form description.

Also, the guidelines clearly state that any current and practicing WS are asked not to post, unless they're sincerely wanting to end the affair. OP is looking for help to reconcile with the OM, not her BH, and is going to continue the affair.

[This message edited by HellFire at 10:09 AM, September 13th (Wednesday)]

Darkness Falls posted 9/13/2017 10:24 AM

The quote is indeed there, but it has always confused me because some WSs divorce even though they're out of the affair so the "committed back to their relationship" wouldn't apply there.

Randy1133 posted 9/13/2017 10:38 AM

This post is trash and should be removed from this site. She is trying to reconcile with some loser AP still living with his parents, because she cheated on him too! All this while she is still married. It doesn't fit the guidelines. Only advice she needs is Get a Divorce and Check yourself into a Mental Hospital ASAP!

Randy1133 posted 9/13/2017 10:45 AM

Darkness, I think trying to reconcile with the AP instead of your own Spouse, kind of stretches the meaning of this site beyond its true intent. Maybe Reddit would be more appropriate for her.

SwimminNotSinkin posted 9/13/2017 10:54 AM

[This message edited by SI Staff at 11:15 AM, September 13th (Wednesday)]

Hurtstomycore posted 9/13/2017 11:04 AM

So you are here to get advice on how to repair your affair relationship now that you cheated on your AP? It sounds as if you have a LOT of work to do on yourself. Holy cow. What about that other "in the background" guy who you are married to?

MangledHeart posted 9/13/2017 11:14 AM

Staff is currently discussing this situation. We make the decisions on what is appropriate based on our discussions. Members telling the OP not to post will be removed from this forum.

Darkness Falls posted 9/13/2017 11:37 AM

Randy, of course I don't dispute that. I was referring solely to the part of the guideline as stated in the particular response I was replying to.

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