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Lost My Best Friend

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NotSureAboutIt posted 9/10/2019 14:27 PM

The one thing that leads me to believe that she may be sincere in that she no longer has feelings for him is not that it turned out he was a serial cheating POS or that he had an STD. It was that you boldly took action and literally kicks his ass in front of her. Her inner hamster brain instantly saw that you were the better man.

You nailed it JSmart!

M1965 posted 9/10/2019 14:50 PM

Hi Neanderthal,

I am sorry that you are battling with so many conflicting ideas and emotions. Anyone who has been in that position knows how exhausting it can be to never feel like we have reached a solid conclusion that does not suddenly shift as a fresh emotion takes us off in another direction.

I remember having times where I thought the only possible way to regain balance and not feel dizzy any more was to get off the ride. And that is not a reference to doing away with myself, but ending a relationship that I was struggling to fix.

I think that is what Bigger was sensing in your situation when he wrote his post, and I get the same feeling. Not that you are thinking of divorce because it will be the best solution, but that negative issues are being bundled together like a snowball rolling down a mountain, getting bigger and bigger, until it can knock down a cabin at the bottom of the hill.

In your second to last post, the snowball was already gathering size and momentum. Lost hope, mistrust, assumptions about her motivations, perceived selfishness...

You are the man on the spot, and better placed than any of us to assess things, but something I want to suggest to you is that each of the things you listed could be explored and clarified individually, whereas in a big bundle, they give the appearance of being insurmountable.

Honestly, I am not telling you what to do, or what to think, but to take one example:

I cant picture us 5 years down the road together. I don't believe I can forgive, I will resent her.

You would be amazed how many people felt like that initially, but found their feelings changed as clarity replaced assumption, and understanding replaced anger. That may seem highly unlikely to you, but there are many here who went through that transition.

I know you are having a really hard time at the moment, so I won't p*ss you off by running through the other things that you mentioned in that post, each of which could be discussed at greater length if you wanted.

My point, and the point of several others here, is that we do not want to see you heading into a divorce too quickly, or because bundling a lot of individual issues together makes it seems like the only option open to you.

The weeks and months after infidelity are discovered can be a Hellish time, composed of highs and lows, love and hate, hope and desolation. That is why so many people here suggest that people give themselves at least six months to allow a modicum of stability to return before they make a big, life-changing decision.

Given the impact that divorce would have on the lives of all three of you, I want to suggest that you try to hold out for six months before you press the zero option button. A lot can happen in that time to change perceptions and add clarity and understanding, if start addressing the issues individually.

In the grand scheme of things, would a six month time-out to let your emotions settle and do some exploring of what caused the breakdown between the two of you not be a worthy use of the time?

To me, it seems like there have been times in your marriage where one of you has unilaterally pulled away from the other, or grown distant, when better communication could have bridged the gap, and maybe even prevented it from developing.

Nothing I have written here is questioning your decision-making or your reasoning. I am just concerned for you as you seem on the verge of making a big life-changing decision, and so I want to run some ideas past you.

All of us are rooting for you, Neanderthal, and we all want the best for you.

numb&dumb posted 9/10/2019 16:16 PM

Neanderthal- I think you need more time to think this through. If you do pursue a D you have to do because it gives you the best possible chance at the life that you want.

Maybe it is just me, but I think that you think a D is what you "should be" pursuing. You get some sense of "things make sense again," if you pursue a D. Again, I could be wrong.

You are confused. 100% normal BTW. It makes sense that you need more time without the distractions that your W brings to you. Out of sight out of mind, right ?

You don't trust your W right now. You shouldn't BTW. You did trust her before, right ? Is it so inconceivable that will never happen ? Are there things she could do, consistently, over a long period of time that would change that ? Just asking. If you can't find any that doesn't mean anything except you are unsure what to do next.

I am not saying you should or should not D her. It is your life and only you have to live in it.

It sounds like if you could keep your life and keep your W role minimal in that you think you could be happy. . .again just me reading between the lines I could be wrong. This is not about her, it is about you.

Also is your wife in IC ? She was so broken that she thought having an affair would be an acceptable choice. To put it simpler, "She hasn't been right in the head for awhile now." She likely can't change overnight and I agree with you she likely isn't remorseful. She regrets her choices, but it is because of the impact on her. She fails to see anyone else's damage in this and truly acknowledge it. She wears her victimhood like a blanket because it keeps her from addressing the things that are wrong with her. Someone that is able to carry out an affair for this long gets good at hiding the truth, in spoken or written words. Her anger is her attempt to exert some control. Her biggest fear is that the future of her M is no longer her choice or within her control. It never was BTW.

She has to hit rock bottom before she has the right incentive to want to be different. It is only a matter of time that her being the way she is becomes too painful for her not to change. That's her struggle, not yours.

How long are you willing to wait? You've got time, man. You've got nothing but time. I'd keep exploring all of your options. Maybe try a separation first ?

I've been where you are at. I was convinced that the only outcome was to divorce my wife. Kids, finances and logistics (I too have no family closer that 1000 miles from me) gave me an excuse to "not D." Which BTW is not the same as reconciliation. That required my W to do a lot of heavy lifting and pass multiple tests for years (3 to be precise) before I felt comfortable working on R. Even then it took time. Maybe the lesser of two evils is a temporary compromise with yourself that allows at least some support in areas that you are going to need it.

There is nothing that is going to change what you are feeling right now. It might work for a little while, but this is trauma. It has happened and nothing you do now will change that.

I am really sorry, but I can't blow smoke up your ass. This is something you have to endure whether you are M'd or not.

Like I said before try the D on and see how it fits (feels) do everything to explore that option. If in that process you see a better future for you and your daughter then maybe take that next step.

Have you thought about a separation ? To give you both time to work on yourselves without interference from the other ?

If you do make sure you get a separation agreement in place. Give it 6 months to one year. If you are doing better without being around your W then maybe it is correct.

On the other hand if it gets to be too hard and you find that you miss your W on some level (weirdly more common than you'd think) maybe slowly try dating again to see where that ends up.

I am just trying to suggest some things that might help you figure what is right for you. Also doing nothing is an acceptable choice too.

Are you and your W both going to IC ? You both are hurting (in different ways). People that are hurt tend to hurt people close to them. Maybe being apart for awhile would do you some good ? At least give you the distance you need. I am not going to give you a metaphor about forests and tress (Even though it does apply here. )

No right or wrong way to survive this. There is a right and wrong way for you. I really hope you find it. I am sorry for the pain you are in. You can be free from that one day. You will just have to trust me on that one right now.

Hell, take a break from SI, infidelity and your W at the same time. Get some distance to the trauma and you will begin to feel better. It doesn't solve anything, but at least it makes putting one foot in front of the other easier.

Marz posted 9/10/2019 16:51 PM

From what OP has posted it doesn't seem to me like he's confused at all. He's reading the signs objectively which is exactly what he should be doing.

Smoked posted 9/10/2019 17:27 PM

I have read part of your wifeís thread.

I have read part of yours.

The 180 is so you can detach yourself emotionally from your wife. It can be used for other things as well during the affair.

It can also help you clear your head somewhat so you can think straight after you found out. Do not make any life long decisions for another few weeks. Make sure you are thinking clearly before you do.

What it wonít do is help the two of you work it out if that is what you are wanting to do.

The marriage is on you both for the shape it is in, you both made mistakes. You my friend made some big ones. Glad you got the help you needed.

We can offer any advice we think you might need, pick and choose what is best for yourself and your daughter. Your daughter will be fine if you choose to divorce as long as she knows the two of you love her and are ďthereĒ for her. If you decide to reconcile make sure you do it right. Do not rug sweep this.

I donít think I could stay with my wife if she had done to me what yours has done to you. I would have divorced her for this.

I agree with not outing your wife publicly. Itís no ones business. The people that need to know already do I believe from what I have read. You wife needs her job like you have said and I think she is doing what she can to change jobs and to avoid contact wife the OM.

Stay strong and keep moving forward in what ever direction you choose. It will get easier as the weeks and months go by.

I will suggest you find a individual counselor for yourself. Find out what went sideways to cause you to take up drinking in the first place and why you turned on your wife back then. You need this info to fix yourself, if you stay in the marriage or if you divorce and start another relationship.

Wish you the best.

Neanderthal posted 9/10/2019 18:40 PM

What is it with the posts today calling women out as being without honor and as hamsters? I am a BW but these generalizations about WWs are way out of line!
Seriously? I could think of a lot worse things to call Waywards. Obviously they are without honor. Don't take it personally. There is no need to defend a rat. I prefer rat to hamster. I also call myself much worse.


In your second to last post, the snowball was already gathering size and momentum. Lost hope, mistrust, assumptions about her motivations, perceived selfishness...
There are some assumptions but they are based on me taking inventory of her actions. The selfishness is real I'm witnessing it first hand.

Remember I read her thread, and i'm watching and listening to her actions.
She completely ignored half a dozen posters asking her to recover the texts and pictures from her phone. I watched her turn white like a ghost when I told her I noticed that. I asked her why, and she had no answer, hesitated and spewed some nonsense. The reason she never would answer those cellphone recovery questions was she knows there a lot more there that I don't know about. Obviously terrible things. Remember she was begging for help to prove to me she is trust worthy again, but she wouldn't even acknowledge those questions. I'll never know the extent of there relationship or love. They probably did talk about the future, or she bad mouthed me terribly, or she sent videos professing how much she loved him. Maybe she told him he would be a better father for my daughter. I'll never know.

The compliment she gave me when I was working outside. It was almost verbatim to what someone wrote on her thread. She didn't even have the decency to make up her own compliment.
You guys are giving the answers to the test to a known cheater. Or at least making it an open book test. All of that would be beneficial if it was used for the right reasons. She's is completely in self preservation mode.

She told me about her supposed suicidal thoughts. I didn't give her the attention she wanted or expected, so EVENTUALLY she shared them you guys on this forum. Not right away, because at the time most posters were on her side so to speak, but once it started getting a little more tense. She dropped the suicidal thoughts pity party on you guys.

Last night I mentioned to her that I will have to do this alone. No support system. That she at least has her dad (He moved here 3 years ago to be close to her and our daughter). She acted as if him being here was basically no help at all.
She even said: What do I get from him? a shoulder to cry on? that's it. I was in awe by that statement. Total shock. I told her i'd give anything to have a shoulder to cry on. Nothing is good enough for her. She isn't capable of seeing the amazing things around her. Her dad would also be a lot more than a shoulder to cry on. Financial support, instant babysitter at any time. And most of all, he isn't outwardly judging her. He's not shaming her, or putting her down. He's being an amazing supportive father. How selfish can she be? What on earth does she want from him?

would a six month time-out to let your emotions settle and do some exploring of what caused the breakdown between the two of you not be a worthy use of the time?
The cause of the breakdown was she was dating another married man, while I was trying to communicate to her. She brushed off my pleas, and returned to the other man that made her happy. There is nothing to explore. She isn't being honest with herself or me. What on earth do you guys expect from me? Do you want me to have multiple Ddays and trickle truth? I don't have time for that shit. The sooner I get this show on the road, the sooner my daughter can learn what her new normal will be.

I think you need more time to think this through. If you do pursue a D you have to do because it gives you the best possible chance at the life that you want.
The life I wanted is gone. Now i'm just trying to survive.

You are confused
I am not confused, if anything i'm finally seeing her for who she really is.

You did trust her before, right ? Is it so inconceivable that will never happen?
Yes, its inconceivable. I will never trust her again.

Also doing nothing is an acceptable choice too.
Maybe it was acceptable to you, but its not to me.

From what OP has posted it doesn't seem to me like he's confused at all. He's reading the signs objectively which is exactly what he should be doing.
Thanks Marz, everyone thinks I've got my head up my ass. not capable of thinking clearly. I don't rush decisions. I research things to death. I cant even buy a fucking shower head off amazon without reading reviews for hours.

Everyone early on told me to watch and observe her words and actions. I'm doing that, and i see a kid who got her hand caught in the cookie jar. Not a remorseful wife. She is acting terribly selfish and childish.

I have read part of your wifeís thread.
I have read part of yours.
Smoked, If you aren't willing to at least read my entire thread, please don't waste your time commenting.

you both made mistakes. You my friend made some big ones
Shit, I had forgotten all about them.

I will suggest you find a individual counselor for yourself
Thanks again for not reading along, but still thinking your voice matters. We're both in IC.

[This message edited by Neanderthal at 6:43 PM, September 10th (Tuesday)]

Bigger posted 9/10/2019 18:54 PM

Neanderthal

You tend to lash out at those that try to help you.
I personally havenít seen a single post here that was written with malice or ill intent, although I have seen several that I donít think helpful or donít agree with. I suggest you either ignore them or find some politer way to ask these posters to stay off your thread. Otherwise you will end up with a crowd that simply cheers you along to whatever cliff you are headed off.

Iím going to ask you one question and then Iíll leave your thread alone. I havenít contributed much to either yours or the WW threads because frankly I donít see a lot of listening going onÖ
My question: are you back to drinking? If you areÖ thatís going to control you more than you can afford right now. If not, then great Ė Iím happy for you for at least that small victory.

BTW Ė That sense of calm? Yes Ė I felt it when leaving that childless relationship and undeniably the easy technical aspect was a big factor in my decision. Next time I felt that calm was when I had spent 24 hours deliberating if my seriously premature baby-boy who was Ė amongst other things Ė diagnosed as ď90% chance of serious brain damage and 99% chance of physical deformitiesĒ should receive end-of-life care or be kept alive. I felt that calm when I had taken that decision. The decision wasnít what I wanted, but it was the correct decision there and then.

And now I will follow my own advice and leave.

nekonamida posted 9/10/2019 19:05 PM

Neanderthal, I've seen this happen many times over when both spouses post here and one appears to be doing everything right. It's easy to get sucked in to the WS when you read their shame and guilt and see their struggle too. It's easy to think that maybe the BS is being too hard on them or too impatient. But at the end of the day, WE only see WORDS. You see ACTIONS.

If you don't buy it, you're the one who's right. No one here other than you gets to see what she's doing with those words and advice and I think everyone needs to remember that and shy away from trying to go to bat for your WW against you. She can say or think whatever she wants but the only thing that matters is what she does. She would not be the first or last WS to say one thing here and do something else in person.

The facts of what is happening right now are:

- You know in your gut that she is withholding and minimizing.

- She refuses to restore deleted messages and photos on her phone. She doesn't have to outright say that she won't in order to make this refusal clear. It was recommended. She ignored it and ignored you when you pointed it out.

- She implements easy advice in ways that you find insincere and doesn't implement advice that you would find meaningful for R.

- She still acts selfish and throws herself a pity party in favor doing the above.

I understand completely why D is on the table. When you cut through everything she is saying, it looks clear to me. No matter what a WS says, no one is ever owed R.

[This message edited by nekonamida at 7:06 PM, September 10th (Tuesday)]

Neanderthal posted 9/10/2019 20:58 PM

My question: are you back to drinking?
I'm still sober. 53 days now

Marz posted 9/10/2019 21:18 PM

She completely ignored half a dozen posters asking her to recover the texts and pictures from her phone. I watched her turn white like a ghost when I told her I noticed that. I asked her why, and she had no answer, hesitated and spewed some nonsense. The reason she never would answer those cellphone recovery questions was she knows there a lot more there that I don't know about.

No full truth = rugsweep

The compliment she gave me when I was working outside. It was almost verbatim to what someone wrote on her thread. She didn't even have the decency to make up her own compliment.
You guys are giving the answers to the test to a known cheater. Or at least making it an open book test. All of that would be beneficial if it was used for the right reasons. She's is completely in self preservation mode.

OP seems pretty observant and well aware of the pitfalls around attempted R. A lot upfront just want them back and jump into R. This post seems well thought out with no rush or confusion to me. Will that change? Maybe, maybe not but with what he's got right now I don't see where he has the basics to offer R if he wants a decent chance of success.

R is a 2-5 year project for most with no guarantees. IMO not to be entered into without specific terms met or you can end up with a repeat.

[This message edited by Marz at 9:28 PM, September 10th (Tuesday)]

ibonnie posted 9/10/2019 21:33 PM

FWIW, having an affair is a dealbreaker. It's breaking your marriage vows to foresake all others yada yada yada.

I think the people that are trying to convince you to wait or to not divorce your debatably remorseful WW are projecting. They wish their wayward spouses had done or said that things that she's posting on here about doing or saying.

If you feel you cannot forgive her for this, that's perfectly reasonable and understandable and amicably (or as amicably as possible) divorcing is better than trying to constantly choke down a shit sandwich thay you know you can't.

RubixCubed posted 9/10/2019 21:35 PM

Neanderthal,
I think you have her pretty well figured out. It seems the folks who said slow down and see, watch her actions, now want to vacillate on that when it's exactly what you've done, only because you didn't make the decision they wanted you to. I think you are seeing this pretty clearly. Good onya.

Marz posted 9/10/2019 21:36 PM

If I was you and I wanted to attempt R I'd lay out what I had to have. No if ands or buts. You are correct in guarding against having a repeat performance. They happen.

From a overall perspective R is the best path if you get the prerequisites upfront and it's not a dealbreaker. Some just can't.

In a D both parties will end up with a lower standard of living unless you're well off, 50% shared custody, etc.

Ripped62 posted 9/10/2019 21:36 PM

I'm still sober. 53 days now

^^^^^^^^^^^

This is great news. Thank you for sharing. Keep working the process or steps that assist you in staying away from alcohol.

Sobriety is vital as you navigate out of infidelity.

GreatWideOpen posted 9/10/2019 21:38 PM

Neanderthal, did your WW ever provide you with a very detailed timeline that allowed (or would allow you) to compare her A related feelings and activities to what was happening at the same time in your marriage? I hope you did, even if you chose not to read it.
I don't think I have seen it discussed on either thread, but did sexual and non-sexual intimacy tank during the A? You obvious got signals that things weren't right and I am wondering if she was pre-occupied, distracted and distant (thinking of and meeting with POS) or if she was actively withdrawing from you (giving clear preference to intimacy with POS)
She's got 400 level skills in Blame Shifting and Minimizing and now apparently moving on up in her Conditionally Unconditional desire to do ANYTHING to keep you two together. The unwillingness to turn over the phone would be another nail in an already sealed casket for me.
Sorry to ask this odd question, but was her weight way up during the time you explored swinging? I'm trying to get inside her mindset.

ramius posted 9/10/2019 22:57 PM

What does everybody tell the BS?

-Take you time.
-Don't listen to what they say, watch what they do.
-See if their actions and words match.

Well, Neanderthal did all that. And given what he (not anyone here) has witnessed, he has made his decision.

Read every one of his posts. He did not come to this decision lightly.


firenze posted 9/10/2019 23:06 PM

Neanderthal, glad you're staying sober. I see you're noticing that there's a group of very pro-R posters here and that they're annoying and quick to point out your faults. You'd think they'd know better than to do that since there's a consensus when it comes to infidelity recovery that the affair takes precedence over all other things, but I guess not.

Personally I'm not categorically against R, but I do believe that D is the right choice in 90-95% of circumstances. There are a few waywards here that have done the difficult, transformative work necessary to become worth the work and pain and time it takes to go through R, but only a few. Most aren't and never will be, and it's pretty common for the ones who post in wayward to make a good show of seeming like they're getting it and doing the work when the truth is that they're using the info given to them and the advantage of being able to specifically prepare a post in order to concoct something that makes them look good. In real life, they're doing neither the outward nor the inward work and merely enjoying the validation and sympathy they get.

You get to see your wife every day without the filter that the internet provides her with, and you're unconvinced of her remorse or her willingness to do the work. I have no reason to doubt you on this. Whatever she's saying in her thread, the fact of the matter is that she ignored you when you came to her and told her of your concerns and then proceeded to engage in lying and gaslighting while simultaneously escalating the affair emotionally and physically and acting like a married couple by playing house with the children involved. The only conclusion anyone can possibly draw from that is that she had already moved on from you in her heart and in typical wayward fashion was too much a coward to come out and say she wanted a divorce so she could be with her AP instead. Now she's upset because she lost not only her AP and her little blended family fantasy, but her backup plan husband is leaving her too.

Perhaps one day she will get it. Perhaps one day she will do the work. Perhaps one day you'll be receptive to that. None of that is a reason to stay married if you know you want a divorce. Free yourself and see what life on the other side looks like. If she's really intent on winning you back, she can live single and celibate and spend the next five or so years trying to prove it to you and she'll understand that you don't owe her a thing.

[This message edited by firenze at 11:08 PM, September 10th (Tuesday)]

Trdd posted 9/10/2019 23:48 PM

Your decision to divorce is yours to make, no doubt. Divorce takes a while... File now and if anything changes you could always reconsider. If not, so be it.

Not defending your WW, but a WS vigorously pursuing R is not really selfish in and of itself. It is in a way because they are trying to get something they want, but attempting to restore what they broke and they feel would be best for the family just does not fall into the same type of selfish category as do all of their actions during the affair. And it is perfectly natural for a WS to panic and make all sorts of mistakes when trying to R.

I didn't realize that there were hidden texts and email messages that could have been recovered or could still be recovered. If that is true and the WW actively resisted any attempt to do it then that certainly is a damaging form of cover-up.

Jameson1977 posted 9/11/2019 00:22 AM

Neanderthal, I think your post today was well thought out and logical. Of course D is going to cause big changes for everyone.

It sounds like you have put a ton of thought into your decisions and I can totally understand where you are coming from.

Sharkman posted 9/11/2019 05:20 AM

When black and white events occur look at them as a gift. It means you donít need to go through that awful emotional rolller coaster of making a decision.

Her not giving you her phone means she puts her hiding a secret over you healing. It puts her well-being over yours (again).

Sheís not remorseful at all. She may have regret, but that isnít the r word that youíre looking for. Remorse is a completely different beast.

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