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Emotionless Infidelity Part 4

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Falling posted 2/25/2019 08:10 AM

Now I am stuck, still hoping for a miracle. I feel weak, I feel embarrassed and ashamed to stay. Anyone else feel like this??

This! Exactly this! None of my friends & family know exactly what has gone on. My family know there was infidelity, but there's no way they would support the marriage if they knew the extent of it. But if I were to tell them and still stay in the marriage, I would have destroyed their relationship with WH, as much as he doesn't deserve their respect.

I struggle with this exact point because I feel like I'm living a lie whenever friends ask me how I am. I've stopped sharing so much of what's going on in my life so that I don't have to lie so much. I'm just not sure I want to be in the scenario where I feel like all my friends are judging me as weak for staying, feeling sorry for me, encouraging me to leave, talking behind my back. I totally get it, I said I'd never tolerate cheating before, and then it happened. Which is the second issue, I wonder whether I really am weak for staying, which is essentially saying that even though he did ALL of that to me, he is still deserving of me. So many conflicting thoughts.

I'm really not sure if I think this kind of emotionless infidelity is worse than a traditional affair or not. Certainly it's harder for a woman to understand it. For me at this moment in time I don't look into what is better or worse because whats the point? The infidelity I'm dealing with is one type. That is what I have to come to terms with.

The point about the therapy needing to go much deeper than just stopping the bad behaviour is spot on. I've been trying to say this to WH and i'm just not sure he gets it. It is hard to trust that a IC is doing everything possible to address the personality flaws, the emotional immaturity, when I have no idea what goes on in the sessions.

We haven't started MC yet and I'm now almost certain my IC has been stalling as she was going to give the recommendation of a counsellor.

Falling posted 2/25/2019 08:19 AM

Thinking about one day being judged by my own children for having stayed with their father is deeply upsetting to me. I do consider myself a strong person, but for various reasons I definitely became more dependent on my WH over the years, especially since we had the children.

I always thought that no matter what happens, one day I will tell them that there was infidelity in our marriage and talk to them about the importance of respect and of being honest with themselves and anyone they choose to share their lives with. WH has already said he wants to talk to our son about it when he's older, to try and make him understand the catastrophic effect it can have on other people. But what if they take the wrong messages from it in their lives, as well as lose respect for me? I too would feel nervous at their weddings now. Argh what a shit show.

Somber posted 2/25/2019 11:39 AM

Falling,

I feel the same way and empathize with you. I wish I didnít open up to a handful of friends as I am apparently at the moment staying. However, I keep dreaming and slowly planning an exit. I did tell more people on purpose, I needed support and I didnít want to continue to live the lie. Somehow, it is much harder to leave than expected. If we didnít have children I like to think I would have left many years ago!!

I used to be the same where I stopped sharing so much. I still shy away from social gatherings as it is so difficult to put on this happy face when I am so heartbroken and lost inside. Those that now know are supportive but I know they truly donít understand why I havenít bolted yet! I am most certain they talk behind my back and judge me. I also know it comes from a great place of caring about me. I am grateful I have these friends as they will be the first there to help me if I leave but I also know my WH and I wonít be the first ones on their invite list to hang out as couples...

I also suffer from the same conflicting thoughts as you mentioned!!! It is a struggle!!

As for MC, I agree not to bother with it!! IC is much more important first. We went to MC 3 years ago, it was focused on forgiveness and exercises to become closer. It attempted to make me understand that the infidelity wasnít about me and he was given the stage to fake his remorse and promise me change. It encouraged me to rugsweep and work on our marriage without dealing with the pain. I was encouraged not to keep bringing it up and focus more on the reconnection. He started an affair that lasted 2 years around the same time as that MC. In October, we went to a different MC and again the focus was on saving the marriage and immediate forgiveness. Although she held him more accountable and encouraged me to come up with deal breakers and specific needs to rebuild trust. I said then that I wasnít ready to work on the marriage and thought we were best to do IC first and revisit the idea of MC later. Immediately after that meeting he lied to me, a week later he was sexting a mutual friend on our street. So again I feel MC gave him a stage to make empty promises and convince the MC and myself that he would change.
Change comes from IC, MC should only occur once that is achieved and both people are ready and willing to rebuild the marriage.
I thought a MC would lead us in the right direction (stay married or divorce) however they only work on the marriage so unless you are sure that is what you want, I wouldnít bother.

sami1234 posted 2/28/2019 07:25 AM

Somber: I too told "too many" people in the beginning. I think it was sort of a personal insurance policy that I would leave, but I stayed, at least for now. I think we need to forgive ourselves for anything we did during those crazy days, weeks, or months of TT and insanity inducing discoveries. I have, I hope you can find some peace as well.

My children are grown, I am financially independent, I absolutely could leave and do my own thing, and still there are reasons to stay. A decades long marriage and the pain of my own parent's D (after 40 years of M) are two reasons. If I don't have a spouse who is doing the work, I should be out, but if he's doing the work, we will see where each day leads.

Somber posted 3/7/2019 21:35 PM

Thanks Sami, I would like to find peace but that seems nearly impossible! I think if your WH is doing the work then there is always hope!! With your kids being grown up that would certainly make it easier to leave; however, with more time invested that would be difficult as well.
Mine is not...
I just feel so damn stupid! I have endured years of TT. I know I have only uncovered a small percentage of the infidelities and deceit. The thing is I canít stand to be near him any longer, he makes me sick! Sure there is some sad underlying reason why he is the way he is but my empathy has dissolved recently.
Currently in this very moment he is starting another PA with a mutual friend. This will make 2 Momís I now avoid at my school. She is also married with 2 small children. He has also been flirting with my cousin via messaging. At the same time he has just messaged about 4 fitness models on Instagram with creepy comments IMO. And this is likely the bare minimum I know about...aside from the porn addiction which I know is a daily thing as well.
I know I have done an amazing job of projecting my morals and values onto others. Clearly that has been one of my biggest life mistakes!! I am not sure there are many good people at all. I certainly donít trust anyone. At the moment no matter what direction I leave my house, I am haunted with thoughts of these women right in my neighbourhood.
I feel embarrassed and ashamed to be married to him. In fact, since he can not admit his problems and has made no effort to change, I have made an appointment with a lawyer to see my options. To top that off he has a drinking problem and wonít admit that either. We just had a huge argument about his drinking but somehow he has blamed me for everything

[This message edited by Somber at 9:43 PM, March 7th (Thursday)]

sami1234 posted 3/8/2019 07:11 AM

Somber: I saw your post on the other thread. Again so sorry you are going through this. If you WH has made no effort to acknowledge that he needs to change, he hasn't even made the first step. Absolutely see an attorney. In fact, see two attorneys! Leave their business cards out where he can see. I did! Knowledge is power.

You are NOT stupid, you have been deceived. I know the feeling that there are no honest people left, that everyone is cheating. I have been through that stage. After Dday I went to a convention with my WH and went to a reception and looked around and was convinced that every single one of them were in the hotel cheating with someone else. It really warps your perspective. Try hard to hold onto your truth, and not let this make you bitter. It will for a while for sure, you may never wholly trust again, if you stay married or even if you D, but try hard not to let it change you deep down. I am still working on that.

Your WH is embarrassing and shaming you with his actions. What if you did these things? Would he be ok with it? I told my WH if he acted out again I would not only leave him but I would not protect him. He got that message loud and clear. I also told him to never allow himself something in this relationship that he was not willing to allow me. Funny thing, the first few months after Dday he was terrified I would have an affair! (wow, just one???) I told him that I would enjoy that, we've been married a LONG time and I have been attracted to others and have had opportunity but I have respected him and our relationship. I don't think he ever thought about that! He was terrified that I would turn the tables, he actually lectured me that two wrongs don't make a right!! (Pretty funny since he slept with so many others so many times but I guess for convenience all of his counts as one?? ) I wouldn't do these things, it would be something we would never recover from, but putting the thought of it all in his head really snapped him into reality. He began to think about what I must feel like, and he couldn't stand it. I think I planted a seed of empathy that did not exist before. Then his IC really built upon that. I don't know if this approach would work with all WH's, but in my husband's case I knew it would. I scared the crap out of him, at least for the time being. One word of caution, my WH is not a violent man, if he were, my tactics would have been different. I do think there are some men who would lash out physically when confronted like this...so just be careful.

Somber posted 3/8/2019 21:44 PM

Thanks Sami,

Ya I kinda posted similar thing in SA first but then feel like that thread is so busy that I may not be heard. Venting it sure helps but having some feedback is also helpful. So thank you for your response.

I feel like I look at everyone as you did at that convention. It is hard to believe the good in anyone. I may never trust again. I will try to hold onto my truth but I sure am bitter!

He is shaming me and embarrassing me. I could tell by his mood today that his hook up fell through. He is grumpy all the while trying to have sex with me (instead I suppose). I turn him down then he becomes the victim. He is so depressed, this is no way for us to live....well shit no it isnít, you think it would click that he is the source of our problems. I thought I made it clear that if he acted out again I would leave. I guess he also relies on that threat being empty. And relies on thinking I donít know about it. I havenít brought it up yet for fear of lies and minimizing. I hate that.

Planting that seed of empathy seemed to work out for you, perhaps your WH was ready to change and build on that with his IC. I hope that continues to improve for you.

I have been attracted to others and have had opportunity but I have respected him and our relationship. I don't think he ever thought about that
! Perhaps I need to word things this way.

I am just trying to get through until I get some legal advice. Knowledge is power! Hopefully it will help to know my options.

sami1234 posted 3/9/2019 12:38 PM

Somber is he in IC at all? I can't remember. Althgouh what I did was effective, he NEVER would have made the changes or fully comprehended the error of his ways without the IC. Upon discovery I did take some pretty powerful steps immediately. I pulled out 50% of the money we had in our checking account and opened my own account at another bank, I presented him with copies of all the emails, photos, names, etc that I had found of his AP and TOLD him I had copies safe with a friend and I promptly saw three divorce attorneys while separated. That did scare the poop out of him I think. He said during MC later that he always saw me as "weak," so the MC said "who do you think is the strong one now?"

It is VERY different when you have children at home. I' not sure I would have approached anything the same way, or maybe I would have. But regardless, the only things that will continue is what you allow to continue. I began to look at this situation for me as power. And you can too! He has always held the power in the relationship, but now I had it. I decided what was ok, what was no longer allowed and what we would do, etc. Now, if his attitude was "I don't care I'm done with this marriage" then none of that would have worked, but, he was desperate to keep the marriage and his semblance of normalcy within our family, and his profession. I used that to my advantage.

I'm sorry you are dealing with the bitter thing, I still feel that sometimes but it has faded. I know I will never love or trust in the same way, that's sad but that's just life.

Somber posted 3/10/2019 12:13 PM

No he is not in IC. He has gone intermittently over the years only when things blow up in his face and he is at risk of losing his family. He never sticks with it or with any change. Perhaps itís just a tactic to make me stay at the time.
It is difficult with children, I feel I need to be more delicate and see a lawyer without his knowledge first. I know he will become more difficult and it will be high conflict the minute I insist on a separation. I want to protect the kids as much as possible so starting with knowledge as power. You sound much stronger and assertive than me, I wish I could borrow some of it!! It is a challenge for me to enforce boundaries as I hate the conflict that comes with it. But i also hate the marriage I am stuck in. He certainly wonít change without IC and rehab. That is the reality I need to join as opposed to my fantasy world of everything magically working out. Itís just not gonna happen.

the only things that will continue is what you allow to continue
. This is very true!! I need to constantly remind myself of this.

Thank you for your continued support and time. I appreciate it.

sami1234 posted 3/11/2019 09:02 AM

Somber are you seeing an IC? I strongly suggest that. When we are in a relationship, once we change our behaviors they have to change theirs, that is why they say relationships are like a dance. You need to develop some strategies here and gain back your strength. It sounds like you can't/shouldn't wait for him to change, so you need to change and he will respond in one way or another. You are also going to need a firm plan. Do you have a very close friend/confidant who can help you with this (along with a counselor?) If he is not even trying (no IC, no change, no remorse) then you have to decide if you can bargain him into that with pressure (like I did) or in all reality, if it is worth it for you to stay in the relationship for other reasons and look away. Because those are the options. It really is a personal choice on what to do, but you do not sound happy with things the way they are now. I absolutely get not wanting confrontation...I WAS like that too!!

If you'd like to PM me I can give you more details about what I did int the beginning that seemed to help. My WH has been very remorseful and has changed how he relates to EVERYBODY, but once in a while something slips out of his mouth that just makes me say WOW, that is scary how you think. Nothing huge, just something...dumb. There are no guarantees that he hasn't gone further into hiding these behaviors that is what scares me, although my marriage (from where I sit) and his behaviors are so much improved on the surface, who knows where things really are. That's the scary part, the trust issue. But my faith remains in myself, and that fact that I have laid down the boundaries to him and have a clear plan of what I will do if anything else happens, and he knows what those are. I know if it happens I will need to be ready, so having that plan ahead of time is only security and peace of mind for me. Then I can go on living MY life.

Echo86 posted 3/18/2019 14:25 PM

Can CraigsList still be used to solicit prostitutes / meet women? I ask because I noticed a pattern on WH visiting the site a few times (on his google activity) but I couldnít see where specifically on the site he went. He claims he was looking at real estate or car parts. Looking at CL myself, I canít find anything sketchy on there... but I see lots of people still talking about it. TY

Somber posted 3/18/2019 16:40 PM

Echo,
I am in Canada and craigslist is not utilized much here that I eve hear about.. I do see it mentioned a lot on here though so I imagine itís a possibility. Hopefully, he was just looking at real estate or car parts!!
That lack of trust we feel is deeply rooted now and hard to overcome. I am sorry you still feel the need to wonder and search. I sure do as well

Somber posted 3/18/2019 16:56 PM

Sami,

I am lost on what to do really. I feel like if I address things again or enforce boundaries he will just find new ways to deceive me. He is a pro at it, a real con man. I see it now as more of an addiction to women, alcohol, the thrill of getting away with things.

I feel like I have no hope left for our marriage and need to end it. The continued infidelities and disrespect are beyond heartbreaking. He just changed passwords for Instagram which is where I recently saw explicit messages with a mutual friend to meet up for sex and a night away. I never saw follow up messages but am sure it has happened or is still on. All the while he plays house here at home like nothing is the matter. The ease of the double life and lack of remorse for the pain caused is shocking!
I am in IC but do not go as often as I should. I do need a firm plan but deciding what that should be?!
I canít force him into counselling or anything, I have tried that in the past and he never sticks with it or perhaps even lies and never goes at all. I am realizing he needs to initiate change, it seems hopeless to come from me.
To look the other way and stay for ?financial stability and daily access to my kids is debatable. Is that a good idea? I am not sure I can stand staying married to him and I certainly am not my best self in his company. I feel so disrespected and tossed aside it is hard to make a happy family day with those dreadful feelings. To give up full access to my kids when I have done nothing wrong is the most difficult aspect of this all. I saw a lawyer and well it was not optimistic. At best I could get 60/40 access and shared custody. It just doesnít seem fair and seems like I lose any way I chose. I lost in marriage as he has cheated on me the entire 10 years and I lose to leave him by giving up at least 40% of my time with my children. It seems nothing matters in the end. He could treat me like crap all along and win in the end. He still wins and has it all, he only engages with the kids that much anyhow. I stayed home, changed jobs, took pay cuts to be the primary caregiver and that doesnít matter either it seems.

Feeling super discouraged and unsure of my next move.

marji posted 3/19/2019 22:28 PM

Somber I am totally unfamiliar with the domestic law of your country but wondering if it's absolutely certain that you would get at best 60/40 custody? I've heard people speak here in the US about losing custody or not being able to see their children as often if divorced but that's not necessarily so and when there is gross negligence and depraved behavior behind the divorce, there maybe a seriously leaning toward the better parent. Some states in the US have no fault divorce but that doesn' mean that adultery and its effects are never taken to account.

If you have not already, please speak to an attorney knowledgeable about these things. Your concerned about daily access to your kids but that might not be what would happen if you decide to separate.

Shocked123 posted 3/19/2019 22:49 PM

Echo,
My H spent a lot of time on CL, usually while at work and weekends in a chair in a corner where we could not see what he was looking at on his Ipad.
Mine searched under therapeutic massage which is now no longer a category. The prostitiues now post under beauty services or something like that.
Under this catergory you will find erotic massage parlours as well as indeoendents (women who work from their own home or come to your house). These women are quite explicit in their ads. The massage parlours are a little more vague when it comes to services offered as most is negotiated in the room with the prostitite.
You may already know this, but if your H clicks on an ad to look at it, the ad will change colour and stay that way. You can scroll back to 1000 ads I believe so look back in the history to see if he looked at any of them.
There are contless sites for people to find whatever they are looking for, unfortunately. Cl is the beginner one. Some are downright nasty compare to CL.
good luck

sami1234 posted 3/20/2019 08:04 AM

Echo: Craigslist has eliminated many categories that were used for illegal actives...all the same I'm sure some get through on other places. Yes, they turn colors when they've been looked at. Backpage is another place they post, not sure if they have cracked down there, ugh.

Somber:Sounds like your WH has absolutely no remorse whatsoever and is really not interested in change, or your thoughts/feelings about the matter. Boundaries you set up are boundaries with consequences, meaning "if you do this, I will then do this." The problem is that you have to be serious and follow through. Would he care? IDK, maybe he is trying to self destruct. If you can't face him with boundaries, I'd suggest writing him a letter stating the boundaries, that's what i did. You do have some serious thinking to do since you have children in this situation. I would see another attorney and get another opinion. Is he a good father to the children? If so then time with him could be well spent and you could have some much needed time to heal and work on yourself when he has the children, and in time, you might be able to think of it this way. I know those who do. If he is not an attentive father, I would document and fight any time he might have with them. You could also choose to stay, of course, and no one would judge you, but you do sound very unhappy so please take care of yourself.

My WH has been extremely remorseful, working hard to change, treats me and everyone differently. Ironically, because he is working so hard it makes me suspicious that he's hiding something. Isn't that ironic? I am so suspicious of his good behavior. Well, what do they expect, blindsiding us with this type of behavior. They are children, now we feel like the parent, he's being good so what's up?

We are 3.5 years into R...if you want to call it that. I know I'll never invest in him the same way I did before. He can't understand that. I feel kind of...meh. The connection I felt is gone, don't think I'm gonna get that back. There are times when we feel like friends, we have some good times, we have companionship and sex is fun...mostly, but...meh. I think that's probably par for the course in this situation.

Somber posted 3/20/2019 15:30 PM

Marji,
Thanks for your response. I met with one lawyer who had a background in childrenís aid society so was hopeful she would help me put my children first. She mentioned that most men fight for that 40% as you pay less child support that way. So I figure that is what he would want. He has a hard time spending one whole day with both kids so not sure he would want that much in the end. He has poor coping skills and little patience. So I fear he would drink or smoke weed while they are in his care. That would be hard to monitor. I could prove some incidents that may grant me more access at first but as long as he shows that he can care for them sober then he would have as equal access as me. Not sure how that is proved or works though. Trying to figure it out.
The lawyer I saw also suggested we do collaborive law in hopes we agree on a separation agreement. Cheaper than court. I may have more luck going to court though but at an estimate of 80,000-10,000 that is something to think about first.

Somber posted 3/20/2019 15:30 PM

double post

[This message edited by Somber at 3:43 PM, March 20th (Wednesday)]

Somber posted 3/20/2019 15:42 PM

Sami,

Thank you for your continued support and great advice.

I donít think he is capable of true empathy or remorse. I really donít. His behaviour indicates that he feels entitled. Despite me explaining my feelings, he just never grasps the damage he has done. And continues to do it. Yesterday morning I discovered he set up an Ashley Maddison account and messaged 4 local women! This morning his search engine indicates he was looking up why his marriage isnít working. It is like he can tell I am not happy but actually doesnít see the big fat why!! Which is his lies, sneaking around and multiple infidelities!!

He has the ability to be a good father when he wants to. But he is inconsistent. Our children love him of course. I like the idea of thinking of it as taking care of myself when they would be with him. I want to be the best mother and role model I can be. That has been difficult as I sort through this repetitive emotional trauma. I certainly am not my best self at the moment.

Too bad you still feel meh but it sounds like some good R has been done! Hopefully your WH stays on that track and you find your way back to happiness with him.

I understand the wondering if something is wrong when they are nice. However, my marriage seems very toxic (so not a good example) but I have witnessed my WH doing nice things for me while distracting me from his infidelities. Like it was part of the game to throw me way off!

sami1234 posted 3/20/2019 17:34 PM

Somber: He sounds like quite the narcissist. My WH has many narcissistic personality traits, but he IS capable of empathy and he HAS learned to be more emotionally intelligent. Emotional intelligence CAN be learned, but one has to want to learn it. He bought books about that and read about it, since it didn't come naturally to him. He is certainly not perfect, but I do see change. We are, as they say, "working on it." I'm going to advise you bump up your sessions with your IC and make sure it is someone who you feel really good about. You need a cheerleader in your section now more than ever.

My WH now says his actions were: selfish and immature and he "wasn't thinking right." He has said that he will be the husband I deserve. He has said that every day will get better and better. These are the kinds of things that a BS needs to hear.

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