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Lost My Best Friend

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Neanderthal posted 7/30/2019 08:54 AM

Update February 2020:
I am a Madhatter. My full confession begins on page 39.

When I came to SI, I was completely broken and lost. Just like every other betrayed spouse here. I am grateful for the support and compassion the people here have shown me. Even after all my bullshit.

*******************************************


It's been 11 days since D day.....

Our 15th anniversary is next month. We have a 5 year old daughter.

She was having an EA/PA for the past 6 months.
I got suspicious, found proof and called her out. She was never honest with me about it. It was like pulling teeth. But she finally admitted what she has been doing, and would probably still be doing.

I'm also an Alcoholic. I was sober for over 4 years before Dday. I gave myself an excuse to drink that day. Somehow i've fought of the urge to continue drinking (im going back to AA).

Things I have already done.
STD check
Made the other man tell his wife (I have also spoken to her)
Told her to go stay with her dad.
Cried, cried and cried some more.
I went to one MC by myself, but it just didn't feel right.

I wish I didn't love her this much, then maybe I could still function. It still feels like a nightmare that I cant wake up from.

She said she thought she loved him and me at the same time. I know now that she doesn't understand what love is. That part of her is broken.

I've been doing a lot of reflecting on our marriage. It definitely wasn't great. I wasn't a very good husband. I'm not trying to take blame, just trying to see if there is anything there to save.

I don't believe she understands what she has done. She seems annoyed to be in this situation (living with her dad), and worried I might revenge cheat. I take these as signs of her selfishness.

Her self esteem has always been a problem. I did my best during the first 7 years or so try and help that. Lots of compliments, showing interest, being very into her sexually.
But then alcohol started getting a hold of me. I stopped being nice to her, and said a lot of terrible things to her. For example: I'm not attracted to you, I'm not in love with you anymore. I even convinced her we should try swinging! how fucked up am I? That never really took off, very minimal interactions with others, but the damage was done.

Fast forward a few years, and we got pregnant. The alternate lifestyle ended, we had our family. I stopped drinking and I learned/realized how much I love my wife. Unfortunately I never made that obvious, I didn't say it often, I wasn't very affectionate.

She was depressed after the pregnancy, her mom was dying of cancer, and I wasn't there for her enough. I thought I was though. After her mom died she was hurting bad.

I just assumed she needed to get busy again. So when she went back to teaching full time, and losing weight, I could see she was happier.

Then she met him. "He was easy to talk to", and more importantly he showed interest.

The hardest past, is a 3/4 weeks ago I confided in her. I told her I was worried I was loosing her, that I loved her, and would do whatever it took to make things better. She kept telling me everything was fine and I had nothing to worry about.
2 weeks ago she had sex with him. Supposedly for the first time. If that's true, she blew me off, and escalated there relationship.

I'm sure I'm leaving out a lot.
She is also aware of this site, and will probably find this post. I wanted her to read other peoples Just found out, hoping it would knock something loose.

I needed to type this all out. I don't want sympathy, just some methods to cope.

Fuck this hurts.
[/bold][/bold]

[This message edited by Neanderthal at 6:44 AM, February 4th (Tuesday)]

Unbelievable35 posted 7/30/2019 09:48 AM

Damn. This hit home. I was in your shoes a little over a year ago. It sucks...bad. You will get a lot of advice here. My advice, really open your ears and listen to it. Whatever you do, do not turn to drinking. Not even once. Study the 180 and get yourself on track for this shit show. Go talk to a menís divorce lawyer ASAP and learn your rights. Finding a good lawyer is imperative, so do your research.

DailyReprieve posted 7/30/2019 11:46 AM

Others will offer great advice re: infidelity, but first & foremost you've gotta fix you. Without that, the marriage is crap regardless of how she handles things going forward.

Meetings, meetings, meetings. Mens meetings whenever possible. If you don't have one, get a sponsor and get back to the steps. I was where you are 5 years ago. Worst cravings to drink & use ever, at over 19 years of sobriety. I was lucky. Knew where that would lead me so I didn't pick up, but it was rough for awhile. Just guessing that like me, you may not have been active enough in AA when dday happened. That inactivity sets us up for a fall when our life gets hard.

Without AA I don't think I would've survived, let alone healed from my fww's cheating. I'm pretty sure I would have drank, and remained miserable over it.

Good luck brother.

Hallmack posted 7/30/2019 11:49 AM

I am also a recovering addict/alcoholic or whatever you want to call it. I have 12 years sober. Iím going through the same things you are going through right now.
Your story struck a lot of cords with me. I know I wasnít a great husband and I should have done a hell of a lot more to focus on making my wife happy. But we cant blame ourselves for their decisions. Itís hard, Hell its imposisble if your anything like me but we didnít make them chose to cheat. Iím wayyy to new at this to offer you any sort of meaningful advice other then that and do not use. You know using will only make your problems 100X worse.

layla1234 posted 7/30/2019 12:12 PM

I'm so sorry. I was in a spot like you, where my husband had told me he was unhappy and I worked my ass off to save the marriage. He even told me he had a crush on this married coworker. I thought how lucky I was to have such an awesome, honest, husband. He was actually having an affair with her the whole time I was busting my ass to do everything he needed to make him feel wanted by me again. Their affair also escalated as our marriage continued to get better. I just don't understand that part of it. Classic cake eaters, I guess.

Dismayed2012 posted 7/30/2019 12:26 PM

Sorry to hear about your situation Neanderthal.

I see you're doing what most betrayed's do, blaming yourself for facilitating your WW's behavior. That's a mistake. There's zero anyone can do to force someone who has morals to cheat on their spouse. No one is a great spouse. We've all got 'issues' but that's part of the package and everyone goes into a relationship knowing that. So stop blaming yourself for her choices.

You need to get yourself mentally back in the driver's seat. Your WW's actions have blown you into the back seat and placed her and the OM in control. You have to pull them out from behind the wheel, climb back over the seat, and steer the careening vehicle back onto the road.

You start by doing what she did to you and disconnecting yourself emotionally from your WW. You deluded yourself; she wasn't and isn't your BFF and now never will be. You've got to take your life back and move forward on your own. You can allow the cheater to tag along if you wish but you can't allow her any control over where you're going or what you're doing. She made her choices. Now it's your turn to make yours. You decide your direction from here forward and you make sure that no one else and no drug, like alcohol, takes the steering wheel from you.

This life is about you now. Don't forget this lesson and don't surrender control of your future. You are the prize from now on. Set goals for your future, take care of you, and live your life free of pain and drama. You're worth it.

Neanderthal posted 7/30/2019 13:51 PM

Thanks for the responses. I was afraid to mention the alcohol problem, I didn't want it to be the main point of discussion. I have a support system for that.

You start by doing what she did to you and disconnecting yourself emotionally from your WW

^^^^^
How do I do this? It would be easy if we didn't have a child together. I go to work early and she comes over to stay with our daughter. Then she leaves when I get home. I've read about the 180. I just don't understand how to implement it, given my current situation. I can work on detaching, but for some reason I still want to be with her sexually. Can I detach and still have sex?


Unbelievable35 posted 7/30/2019 14:44 PM

How do I do this? It would be easy if we didn't have a child together. I go to work early and she comes over to stay with our daughter. Then she leaves when I get home. I've read about the 180. I just don't understand how to implement it, given my current situation. I can work on detaching, but for some reason I still want to be with her sexually. Can I detach and still have sex?

I believe having sex would send the wrong impression. This is your time to find yourself. You likely have co-dependency issues being an alcoholic. I know I did. This just makes it that much harder. I put a lot of energy into exercising. Stay busy doing things you enjoy. You will find new passions. I recoomend reading up on how to control your emotions. You are in for a wild ride if you canít properly manage them. Think of a bad ass. What would a bad ass do? He would remain calm, in control of his emotions. Educating yourself on this is vital. I really wish I would have read the book, ĎWhat women want in a maní a long ass time ago.

180. Detach. Exercise. Be healthy. Read. Find yourself.

Jduff posted 7/30/2019 15:25 PM

I did not author the advice below. It will be very difficult for you to follow but know there is a LOT of truth in this advice. For as long as you communicate to her the value she has for you, how special she is and how you still love her WHILE SHE IS CHEATING ON YOU all you are doing is pumping her ego to continue. You are doing what we call the pick me dance. After all, if she has two men pining for her then why choose one or the other? Have both you and the OM! But if you REMOVE yourself as an option then often times the affair fantasy ends. As long as I've been a member here I have NEVER read about an affair ending or a reconciliation be successful by anyone doing the "pick me dance". The below is very counter intuitive but if you are looking for guidance this method has often been the best way out of infidelity, whether it ends in divorce or reconciliation. It is aimed at walk away wives but it is generally applied with the 180. If you don't have the stomach for it, you won't be the first and it is completely understandable. Infidelity is the most difficult challenge to enter into most people's lives. It can take a few tries to get out of it.

Just Let Them Go
The end result?

The end result is to respect yourself in the end, let go of the people that don't value you or respect you.

That is the end result.

The quickest way to get a cheating spouse back is to let them go with a smile on your face wishing them the best in life and hoping that everything works out in their relationship with their affair partner.

Seriously, the quickest way to get them back.

Nothing else works better or quicker.

Let them go.

Agree with them and their feelings,
"you should be with the OM, I hope he makes you happy, good bye"

Wouldn't that be true love?

If you really loved your spouse, and wanted them to have what they really want in life which is the other person they're in love with, wouldn't letting them go be the approach if you really love them?

Why focus on the affair or the drama associated with it?
Just let them go. Give them their freedom.

You can take a good hard look at yourself in the mirror everyday and improve yourself but do it for you, not for someone else, the changes will never stick when it's done for someone else, do it for your benefit and you will probably make those changes last much longer if not indefinitely - because it's for your benefit and you realize the importance and value in that benefit because YOU are involved.

I will never tell someone to change to entice a WAW (Walk Away Wife) back when she's been cheating on him. I don't care how bad a marriage, there is never an excuse for cheating. That is a personal decision that someone makes to cheat on their spouse. If a marriage is really bad, leave, get a divorce, speak up to your spouse and tell them flat out "this marriage sucks and if things don't change I'm going to leave you and find someone better" and if things don't improve, leave that person.

But cheating, no excuses.

Think about cheating.
A wayward spouse who cheats on their spouse goes behind their back, secretly, telling lies, feeling guilty, getting angry at their spouse for getting in the way of their fantasies but never owning up to their actions, never admitting what they're doing. If a person who cheats on their spouse felt justified in their actions, why hide and go behind their spouses backs when they start cheating, why lie, why make up excuses about late nights at work and going to a friends place and sleeping over because they drank too much and any other such nonsense?

Deep down, the cheating spouse knows there is something inherently wrong with their actions otherwise they wouldn't lie about their actions and hide what they're doing.

Fighting the affair? For what reason?
To compete with the OM or OW for your spouse?
What message does that communicate to your wayward spouse?
They have lots of value and you have none because now you have to compete with another person for their love? Competing with your wayward spouse's affair partner never works, it just prolongs an ugly drama filled process.

The easiest way to show you will not tolerate cheating in your relationship is to let that person go. That is the easiest and most effective way to show this.

"Look wife/husband, I won't be in an open relationship with you, I won't give you X number of days, weeks, months to make your mind, if you really feel like you need to sit on the fence on this decision and can't decide between your affair partner and me well I will make the decision for you, you can be with them because I'm no longer an option. I love you and wish you a good life with them and hope it works out for you because it didn't work out for us. Now the best thing we can do for each other is to make this process as graceful and peaceful as possible for us and our children, I'll contact a lawyer/mediator and get started on the process of our legal separation/divorce."

You give them what they want.
You don't fight them on this issue.
You agree with their feelings,
they want to be with the other person, fine they should be with the other person, let them be with the other person.

You will never convince a person to change their feelings with your arguments and logic. You can not find one member on this website in a situation where they are dealing with infidelity where they got their spouse to change their mind about how they feel about their affair partner.

You can't say "don't love them, love me instead",
you can't say "look at me, I'm better in every way compared to your affair partner, pick me instead of them",
you can't say "you took marriage vows, you promised to love me"

I agree, you don't have to make it easy for your wayward spouse to have an affair, but when you let them go, "lovingly detach", you don't have to worry about making it easy for them. It's no longer your concern, they can have you or them but not both and not at the same time and since they've chosen to have an affair, they've made their choice, there is no profit in fighting that decision. Let them go and move on with your life, that is the quickest, easiest way to get them back.

You definitely don't support them financially and enable them, that would be weak, wussy, clingy, insecure behavior - something in you telling you that you need to support them financially while they're having an affair, hoping they'll realize how nice you are and come back to you.

Just let them go, have them move out or you move out and live a good life without them.

Neanderthal posted 7/30/2019 16:22 PM

She isn't a walk away wife (not yet). She agreed to NC with OM and wants to reconcile.
Does this change anything?

My gut told me something was wrong, and my gut now says to separate. But my emotions are everywhere.

Dismayed2012 posted 7/30/2019 16:47 PM

Indifference is your friend. Your WW took herself out of your hands and out of your care. She's not your problem anymore. Your concern is now for yourself and your child, that's all. It's not easy to disconnect. It takes a lot of convincing yourself saying over and over again, "This isn't my problem." You're in pain and you're going to be in pain for a while; that's normal. Whenever you find yourself pining for her, remember what she was doing with the OM while you were out busting your a$$ for her. Remind yourself so you don't lose your disgust for her selfish choices at your and your child's expense. If you find yourself in anguish at any time day or night, go for a long run. Run until the endorphins kick in and the anguish subsides.

Changing up your daily routine helps too. Start working out daily. Take your anger (and you should have anger) out on the weights or anything that you can use like a weight. Do pull-ups on a tree limb. Sit-ups and pushups don't require any equipment. Run your rear off up and down the street. Wear yourself out. Use your mindless exercise time to think about and plan your future path. Decide where you want to be in 5-10 years and start laying out the milestones you need to accomplish to get there. Every decision you make, financial, job, etc. should be oriented toward working those milestones. Keep your body and mind busy. Clean the house; do the dishes and laundry. Make the repairs around the property you've been putting off; get your kid involved with you. Rearrange the place; remove pictures that bother you and find some at Goodwill to replace them. Stay busy and wear yourself out so you're asleep as soon as your head hits the bed. Minimize idle time. Make a to-do list to keep yourself on track. Forward motion (constructive activity) and intense focus on your future will get you through this hell quicker than anything else you can try. Detachment will be automatic as you make these changes in your life. I again wish the best for you.

Edit: If she wants to reconcile, tell her you aren't making any promises, period. She is responsible to fix her own issues and keep you updated. You have nothing to do with what she's fixing. This doesn't change what you need to do to change your future for the better. As I said before, if you want to let her tag along, that's fine. The important thing in all of this is that you take control of your future regardless of what she or anyone else is doing. You are the prize. You are the leader. You bring the most value. Take care of you.

[This message edited by Dismayed2012 at 4:53 PM, July 30th (Tuesday)]

Jduff posted 7/30/2019 17:11 PM

What do you think, Neanderthal? -

he said she thought she loved him and me at the same time. I know now that she doesn't understand what love is. That part of her is broken.

I don't believe she understands what she has done. She seems annoyed to be in this situation (living with her dad), and worried I might revenge cheat. I take these as signs of her selfishness.

The hardest past, is a 3/4 weeks ago I confided in her. I told her I was worried I was loosing her, that I loved her, and would do whatever it took to make things better. She kept telling me everything was fine and I had nothing to worry about.
2 weeks ago she had sex with him. Supposedly for the first time. If that's true, she blew me off, and escalated there relationship.

You want to know if she is wanting R because she wants you or to avoid consequences?

Neanderthal posted 7/30/2019 18:14 PM

Thanks Dismayed for all the ideas and advice. It won't be easy, and you're right, My daughter and I should be my main priority.

Is it regret or remorse? I'm guessing she just regrets getting caught. I'm not sure you can feel remorse after doing what she did. Only time will tell.

Unbelievable35 posted 7/30/2019 19:25 PM

I dont think a WS can truly be remorseful until having time alone. A lot of time. Like months. Let her actions speak for her. Don't believe a damn thing she says. Actions actions actions. In the meantime, it is imperative you take action. You need to have your own growth. If you are so zoomed in her, you cannot grow. This is why you must start to detach. It doesnt happen overnight. It takes time. Its a lot harder for a codependent and takes longer. Bust your ass working out and eat healthy. This is honestly the best thing I ever did during my process. I wish I could post before and after pictures of myself. Use this as motivation to become a great man.

Neanderthal posted 7/31/2019 07:35 AM

Well she has already read this post. I asked her to respect my privacy and stay out of here, but I doubt she will.

Also she wants to talk today after I get off work. How do I handle that? Just say no? or allow her to talk and be distant?

I made a list of things to do around the house. They should help keep me busy, and if we end of divorcing the house would need to be sold anyways.

Lalagirl posted 7/31/2019 07:45 AM

People may PM (private message) you with advice now that your WW knows you're here. We want SI to be your safe zone.

I asked her to respect my privacy and stay out of here, but I doubt she will.

Not a good sign. At all.

annb posted 7/31/2019 09:23 AM

I'm sorry about what your wife put you through, and I'm even sorrier that your wife knows about this site.

This should be YOUR safe space.

I guarantee you she will not respect your privacy and hold your comments against you.

Seek out a good counselor for individual counseling, not marriage counseling.

Dismayed2012 posted 7/31/2019 14:39 PM

I suppose there's no harm in giving her some time to express herself as long as it doesn't become a daily or even weekly time-wasting experience. But if you feel that her presence is going to be too stressful for you or you just don't want to meet, then tell her you need time or you're busy and don't meet with her. She dissolved the marriage, she's no longer your wife, and you're no longer obligated to her according to the marriage covenant. It's only a piece of paper now. If you do meet, indifference would probably be the best strategy to keep your head on an unemotional footing. Do what's best for you.

Edit: Also you might want to put a time limit on the 'talk'. Just keep it to yourself and when the time is reached get up, say "thanks for the talk but I need to get busy", and escort her to the door. You can do that at any time during the 'talk' if it starts going sideways or becomes a blubber fest.

[This message edited by Dismayed2012 at 2:45 PM, July 31st (Wednesday)]

M1965 posted 7/31/2019 15:24 PM

Also she wants to talk today after I get off work. How do I handle that? Just say no? or allow her to talk and be distant?

You may as well listen to what she has to say, because it will be another step along the road everyone walks in the aftermath of infidelity.

If she starts to blame you for her actions, you can listen or shut her down, but it is a sign that she is not taking ownership of what she did.

Who is the OM? If it is someone she works with, no contact is going to be virtually impossible, so she may need to think about changing jobs.

She needs to get individual counseling if her lack of self-worth and need for external validation made it so easy for a sleazy married POS to pretend to be interested in her when all he wanted was a source of free sex.

She did not love him; she loved how he made her feel. There is a difference.

Once she understands that, she will start to understand the vulnerabilities she has to fix, and she will also see her lovely, attentive affair partner for who he really is. A man with no respect for her, for his wife, for his kids, for your child, or for you.

She needs to think about whether being used for sex by a man like that was really such a privilege and ego boost, and if a man as low and contemptible as him was worth damaging two marriages and families for.

If your wife is reading here, and already reading your thread, maybe she will learn something from it about herself and the damage she chose to inflict on several other people. If she has a conscience, perhaps that will motivate her to get the counseling she so badly needs.

And perhaps she should start posting in the Wayward forum here. There are several very honest wayward wives who advise people there, and they can help your wife to see the difference between delusion and reality.

That process can help her change to be a more secure life partner for you, a more secure parent, and a more secure person in herself, with less chance of falling for a sack of BS from the next sleazy predator who uses false sincerity and words of praise as a cheaper option than paying cash for sex.

Neanderthal posted 7/31/2019 17:15 PM

You may as well listen to what she has to say, because it will be another step along the road everyone walks in the aftermath of infidelity.

I tried to listen. She's seeing a therapist and i guess it was suggested she remind me of the things she's done so far, since Dday. Like NC with OM, attempting to sell her car that things happened in. Staying at her dads at my request. Going to counseling. Then i got triggered. Here's why.

Who is the OM? If it is someone she works with, no contact is going to be virtually impossible, so she may need to think about changing jobs.

Shes a school teacher and the OM is a parent of a student there. I told her to find another job. They would probably see each other weekly or more. That's not acceptable to me.
She told me since its so close to school starting and that the principle would struggle to find a replacement in time, she wasn't planning on leaving. I asked her if she at least tried, and she said no.
So i calmly told her i'm working towards separation/divorce and i'm meeting with a realtor to discuss selling the house. Neither of us could afford it if we divorce. She didn't like that, and broke down. She left the house and came right back and refused to leave. After a couple minutes she got her senses and left.

I know, I know. I gave her to much info. But she needed to hear how serious I am about where we are.

As for her going to counseling. Its marriage counseling and that's all they discuss. I told her to focus on herself, and she isn't. Shes doing damage control.

I doubt she will post in the wayward section. that would be an admission of guilt, and admitting that's shes reading my posts.

The OM is a piece of work. He has cheated multiple times before, including someone from craigslist, and he doesn't even have a fucking job! Thanks to his wife for sharing this with me.

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