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Lost My Best Friend

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somanyyears posted 1/22/2020 08:31 AM


..I've been reading here for a while now and wanted to add my 2 cents to the discussion on several talking points along the way.

It was the title of this post that got to me. Four little words !!!! Then a tornado of emotions and distant memories of 'that friend'. He brought a whole, new definition to the word..

....just had to respond when you said,

"Then I top it off with a bowl of cereal before bed."

Got to be one of the great pleasures in life, a habit I got as a small child. What kid wouldn't want to fill their belly with Sugar Crisp or Cherrios... Frosted Flakes or Rice Chrispies, with sliced bananas and sugar sprinkled on top.
.. last night it was a bowl of Shreddies with half milk and half cream topped with some liquid honey... so good!

I recommend cereal before bed as the world's best cure for infidelity.

..I guess I'm 'not cured YET!'

Seriously though,..
My prayers and wishes for love and peace to be present in all of our lives.

smy

Neanderthal posted 1/22/2020 11:42 AM

It makes sense to be angry at your W for betraying you, even though you betrayed her.
I know it doesn't make sense. I'm angry, but not at her. Sadness and disappointment but not anger.

To heal as a WS, you need to change yourself from betrayer to good partner, and as much as possible you need to see yourself as a loving, lovable, capable human being. You are redeemable, if you do the work.
I want to do that. All of that.

I recommend cereal before bed as the world's best cure for infidelity.
Lately for me its been Cinnamon Toast Crunch. I tried to get my daughter who is 5, to try frosted flakes with sliced bananas. She wasn't having any of it. Bananas don't belong in cereal! she said.

I didn't get a sweet tooth until after I quit drinking. I guess my body was still craving the sugar.

emergent8 posted 1/22/2020 12:21 PM

I didn't get a sweet tooth until after I quit drinking. I guess my body was still craving the sugar.

Yep. Or more specifically, your brain was craving the dopamine hit. Affairs, thrill-seeking, other Wayward behaviour - all provide dopamine hits too. That's another reason why learning to love yourself is so important. If you can self-satisfy. If you don't need to turn to external stimulus to make yourself feel good, you are more likely to make good choices, that in turn, make you feel good about yourself.

somanyyears posted 1/22/2020 15:50 PM


..

Your daughter may be too young to understand the benefits of fiber in her diet. or the good a banana can do for you.

Tonight it's 'Lucky Charms'...I can hardly wait 'till bedtime.

..and, by the way.. it's part of being good to yourself, eh??

smy

Neanderthal posted 1/24/2020 08:56 AM

In keeping with tradition. I had a bowl of cereal before bed last night.
I'll go grocery shopping today. Maybe I'll try a new cereal. I don't really like change.

I know I have threads in pretty much all the main categories. At different times I need help with different aspects of this crazy infidelity.

Right now I am wearing my BS hat. LD and I are communicating again. Pretty much everyday and seeing each other more frequently. She went to an AA meeting with me the other day, that meant a lot.
Seeing and talking regularly has a major fucking draw back! I can and do ask questions regarding her affair. At least when we were NC, I would just push them aside knowing she wasn't around to give a bullshit answer.

Like this one: "I fell for the shiny new thing"
Lets break that bullshit down shall we.
"I fell for" That almost sounds like she was tricked, not responsible, oopsy!
"shiny new thing" It was new and different. Not you and boring. I deserve new stuff. Oh look squirrel!
Put it together and my interpretation is she was duped into playing with a new toy she liked very much.

I know I shouldn't read into these things. After all they aren't her words. They are her therapists.

[This message edited by Neanderthal at 8:56 AM, January 24th (Friday)]

emergent8 posted 1/24/2020 11:15 AM

"I fell for the new shiny thing" sounds an awful lot like minimizing language. It would make me twitch too. I imagine she was trying to explain to you how she sees now that her infatuation/feelings for her AP were not based on anything real or substantive (particularly because she knows you are struggling with that particular aspect of the A) and that it was just a trivial distraction from her own unhappiness or whatever, but she could have said it a million other ways...

My advice, both because I wouldn't be able to help myself, and because I think it's especially important given the dynamic between yourself and your wife, call her on it. Either do it in the moment or give it a few minutes until you're able to properly verbalize it. Sometimes its tough in the moment to know precisely why something that is said (or the way that it is said) bothers you... it's easy to know it bothers you, you feel that immediately, but the rationale behind it is harder. My guess is that your wife will recoil or become defensive or try to explain.... The best thing she can do is listen to what you're saying, take it on and try again. "I'm sorry, I can see why it sounded that way. What I should have said was ...."

Also, a warning: now that you're talking again, this is going to happen a million times. Working on how you communicate with each other when you're triggered is a necessary skill.


After all they aren't her words. They are her therapists.

Care to elaborate?

She went to an AA meeting with me the other day, that meant a lot.

This is really fucking great. I'm genuinely happy for both of you.

Neanderthal posted 1/24/2020 11:51 AM

After all they aren't her words. They are her therapists.
Care to elaborate?
She admitted to waiting to respond to one of my concerns until after her IC. Which I totally understand. I have a habit of dropping some big shit in a tightly wrapped bow, its hard to respond sometimes. She also admitted the "shiny new object" was something the therapist said. My concern is she is cherry picking from everywhere but herself to answer questions or discuss feelings.

I did call her out on it. I even felt some anger. Which I think is good. Since I haven't allowed myself to be angry at her.

Communicating is hard!

[This message edited by Neanderthal at 11:52 AM, January 24th (Friday)]

Notmine posted 1/24/2020 14:46 PM

It seems most people here that reconcile, have to train themselves that what the wayward partner had wasn't real. Not real love, not a real relationship. Learn to believe the AP was nothing more than a fairytale. I'm not certain I can do that.
How can I come to terms with her being open to loving and being loved by someone else while WE were married? She seemed so happy too.

This bothers me about my WH's affair partner as well. He TELLS me that it was all bullshit, but it wasn't bullshit when he told me that he had "strong feelings" for her. It's infuriating and offensive and feels like dishonesty, but I know he is not being dishonest. I know because he has been painfully honest with me since his head popped out of his ass after the affair (which took more than 3 long and horrible months of TT, minimizing, rugsweeping, etc.). I can FEEL that he is being honest. It's a painful and frustrating paradox. I believe that people can live in a state of denial (have seen it many times with fellow addicts and alcoholics) where what they do to feel better is hurting themselves and everyone they love. They turn into monsters who do not resemble the human beings they were before addiction invaded them. I feel like my husband's infidelity was very similar to this. I guess the point I am making is that I live with what he did. I don't forget and I can't pretend that it never happened. I think about it every day, but it's been about 4.5 years since DDay and I find that the thoughts are much less painful and I can move through them much more quickly than in the past. In the end, I chose to R with my husband. Now I feel that, although I am not grateful for the affair (HELL to the no), I am grateful for things that came as a result of discovery. I am stronger. I got help for issues of anger and trauma, so I am a happier person and I feel worthwhile. My marriage is healthier than it ever was before DDay. My husband works every day to deserve me. He does more than I could ask for to keep me safe (except, perhaps, not having the fucking affair in the first place).

I also wanted to respond to the idea of "training" that you mentioned above. I don't see it as "training" myself. For me, it's more about acceptance. An old AA sponsor of mine used to say "It is what it is, it is only what it is, and it is not what it is not". I used to think that was the stupidest thing I had ever heard, but it makes perfect sense to me now. I accept the fact that the A happened and that my husband had intense feelings (sexual and otherwise) for another person. I live with that every day. I also accept the fact that he took the actions necessary to be a safe partner for me: he has busted his ass to deserve to be married to me. I also accept the fact that I am not innocent in the destructive forces that were alive in our marriage when the affair happened. I know that I did not deserve what he chose to do, no matter WHAT I did, but I take responsibility for my part of a bad marriage. We both have to live with our destructive choices: both of us were destructive to ourselves and to our marriage. It is different, but we were both wrong. I do not compare our bad decisions because it is not helpful or productive for me to do that...for MY sake. I accept the fact that the affair is not happening now. My life has changed and he has changed. I accept the fact that, ultimately, my life is happier with him than without him. Our MC told me a while back that I would be going through pain and devastation with or without him. I had to make the choice which was a better option for me. MC saved my marriage, BTW, and I highly recommend it. I know you are separated, but it might help you to clarify your decision with regards to R or to D.

I also wanted to say that the beatings you have been giving yourself with a 2X4 might be keeping you from seeing what your life COULD be like. You ARE worthwhile. I was really impressed with your honesty and willingness to take responsibility for your actions regarding your wayward status and the mistreatment of your wife. You have stopped a cycle of abuse with regards to your child,. You have stopped drinking. You are trying to be a better person. These are big deals! Allow yourself to find and take your happiness. You deserve it. A nun I used to know in AA used to say "You don't have to BE good, you ARE good". I always felt that was a direct message from the Almighty, LOL. The important part is that we keep on taking the next right step.

I am a child of PTSD from FOO issues and from the affair. I needed IC to help me stop the cycle of reacting out of trauma to create chaos in my own life. I live in a constant state of fear and anxiety as a result of trauma and I react in anger because anger makes me seem powerful and strong when I really feel weak and helpless. What you shared of your background and your reactions of anger make me think of myself. If you are not seeing an IC, it might be really helpful for you.

I agree with other posters that there seems to be some very tender feelings between you and your WW. I always believed you should explore that and I am glad that you are getting out of your own way enough to do just that.

Butforthegrace posted 1/24/2020 20:25 PM

Like this one: "I fell for the shiny new thing"
Lets break that bullshit down shall we.
"I fell for" That almost sounds like she was tricked, not responsible, oopsy!
"shiny new thing" It was new and different. Not you and boring. I deserve new stuff. Oh look squirrel!
Put it together and my interpretation is she was duped into playing with a new toy she liked very much.

I know I shouldn't read into these things. After all they aren't her words. They are her therapists.

That sounds like the words of a person trying to find comprehension of the parts of herself that seem incomprehensible, a free-form thought stream coming from a place of nascent, but not yet formed, self-awareness. It's good she feels comfortable sharing these thought fragments with you. Letting her guard down.

Eventually she will realize this thought is a layer to protect herself from plumbing the true darkness. Among other things, the AP was, from any objective perspective, a piece of shit. There is no clear-eyed way of viewing him as a "shiny new thing". What was shiny and new was her imagination of a man she yearned for.

I see both of you moving down the path of leading examined lives. Whether you end up together or apart in the long run, I think both of you will end up being better than you were.

[This message edited by Butforthegrace at 1:45 PM, January 25th (Saturday)]

Neanderthal posted 1/27/2020 11:23 AM

I accept the fact that, ultimately, my life is happier with him than without him. Our MC told me a while back that I would be going through pain and devastation with or without him. I had to make the choice which was a better option for me.
This is really what it all boils down to I suppose.
Is my life better with her as my wife?
Is the effort required worth it?

I cannot answer either of them honestly yet.

We have been continuing to communicate. In person and through text email. It hurts. All of it. I believe she is answering my questions as honestly as she can. I say it that way, because I don't think she's dug hard enough to really understand what she's done or why. Intimacy has been wonderful and sometimes awful. I've missed her so its a welcome challenge. I triggered badly from mind movies Saturday night, and it stopped me in my tracks.

Resentment is something I've always had a problem with. Resentment and how I handled it, is part of my path of destruction years ago.
Now I resent her for falling in love again.
For experiencing the almost childish fun and excitement that comes from dating someone new.
For having another lover. A partner to explore sexually. (I understand how complicated our swinging past is. So this statement may not make sense. I have pretty much no real memories from the swinging time. Just a foggy idea of what went down.)
For being so care free! She was on cloud nine and nothing could touch her.
I do not want to resent her. I know its unhealthy. I worry it'll eat away at me in time.


It's been 6 months already. I know I'm in a better place, but man it sure feels like its at a snails pace.

emergent8 posted 1/27/2020 12:05 PM

Is my life better with her as my wife?
Is the effort required worth it?

Add one more: are each of us capable/committed to doing that work? I must say, I didn't know my own answer to that question when I decided to give R a shot. It's okay not to know at this point.

I believe she is answering my questions as honestly as she can. I say it that way, because I don't think she's dug hard enough to really understand what she's done or why.

That is probably a fair assessment of where she's at right now. As long as she is demonstrating empathy, honesty and a good work ethic as far as R is concerned - you can work with that.

Resentment is something I've always had a problem with. Resentment and how I handled it, is part of my path of destruction years ago.

I do not want to resent her. I know its unhealthy. I worry it'll eat away at me in time.

This was a real concern for me too. I wanted our marriage but I didn't want it if it meant that I would always hold this against him. I understood that there was a temporary imbalance in our relationship but I didn't want it to be a permanent one.

When we begun MC, our counselor asked us about goals. One of mine was to learn how to not resent him. When we started, I had so much resentment - I knew it wasn't healthy. Keep talking. Empathy is the best antidote to resentment. I know you are capable of that.

Neanderthal posted 1/29/2020 09:39 AM

Affair season is here for me. Technically her affair started earlier in the month, but today hit me like a ton of bricks. Today is my birthday and I made the mistake of looking at her phone records for this time last year. Let's just say I wasn't who she talked to the most, or who she wanted to be with.

Any hope or positive feelings are gone today. I feel anger and alot of dismay. The next six months are going to be a special kind of hell. Reliving there fantasy, day in and day out.

I really want off this fucking rollercoaster.

emergent8 posted 1/29/2020 16:34 PM

I'm sorry today sucks. I hope you find some light in it celebrating with your daughter.

Happy birthday, Neanderthal.

somanyyears posted 1/29/2020 16:46 PM

..Neanderthal.. Sending you birthday wishes as well as positive mojo to get you out of this funk. Make that a "fucking funk".

Take care.

smy

P.S. Sugar Crisp was on sale this week...bought 2 boxes..

[This message edited by somanyyears at 4:48 PM, January 29th (Wednesday)]

paboy posted 1/29/2020 17:33 PM

We are all plugging for you. The old thought 'fake it to you make it'...

IHatePickingName posted 1/29/2020 18:30 PM

Happy birthday. My birthday was a few weeks ago and sucked too. And my affair season is starting too. He isnt sure when exactly, but sometime when it was coldest last winter.... So January or February... For that particular type of cheating, at least.

It is so hard to be knocked down just as you start to regain any semblance of hope.

Neanderthal posted 1/29/2020 20:12 PM

Thanks guys. I took my daughter to one of those restaurants that have peanuts in the shell on the table as a snack. She loved it! She must have cracked and ate 30 peanuts before our meals arrived. I think being able to just push the shells onto the floor was her favorite part. This is what that restaurant does, otherwise I do not recommend dumping food on the floors at food joints.

My daughter does an excellent job of attracting attention from the opposite sex. Before DDay I was oblivious. Not so much anymore. Maybe that's what I needed today. A reminder that I'm not destined to be miserable or lonely if I divorce. She even invited the waitress to her upcoming birthday party. After we left I explained to her its not a great idea to invite strangers to birthday parties.

For the record I was all business with this woman. Little to no eye contact, kept the talking to ordering food and asking for napkins.

are each of us capable/committed to doing that work? I must say, I didn't know my own answer to that question when I decided to give R a shot. It's okay not to know at this point.
Excellent question to add. On down days like today, I know what the answer is.

I got Raisin Bran Crunch this time!

Neanderthal posted 2/3/2020 08:56 AM

I had a pretty good weekend and days with my daughter. She is taking ice skating lessons, and during Thursdays class she really did great! I had talked to her before class, and asked her to focus more. Guess what...she did it! Anytime my 5 year old actually hears me I am just super happy about it.

I also played 18 holes of golf. I walked them and did it sober. I wasn't sure that was possible. Golfing sober is a total different animal. For the first time in months I could actually focus on something other than infidelity. Although it wasn't completely off my mind. I almost texted my wife to ask if her AP played golf. The idea of running into him out there while I was carrying gold clubs seemed like a recipe for disaster.

I did spend some time with LD as well. We went for a nice walk and talked.

On a sad note. I also found out my sister who I haven't spoken to in almost 2 decades, was put into rehab. I guess she also has a really bad problem with alcohol. Maybe after she gets out, I'll reach out to her.

emergent8 posted 2/4/2020 11:31 AM

I also played 18 holes of golf........

For the first time in months I could actually focus on something other than infidelity.

This is great, N! So much better than the donuts and self-loathing.

How has it been with LD? Still triggery? Do you feel like you are making progress?

I'm sorry about your sister, though I suppose its good she's getting help. Why don't you speak with her?

Neanderthal posted 2/4/2020 14:27 PM

I am still eating donuts. I really need to stop. The weight gain is going to become a problem.

LD and I.....what a complicated mess.
We talk, I still trigger a lot. I tell her about the things that are bothering me. Some are legitimate gripes, and others are just the injustice of it all, so nothing she does seems right. She listens and tries to help any way she can. I still wont really let her in though.

I met LD's therapist. That was interesting. I know its not considered the norm to do so, but I think in our case it may have been helpful. Only time will tell.

I still prefer to be alone most of the time. It takes effort on my part to involve with her or anyone for that matter.

I catch myself dozens of times a day just taken back by where I am in my life right now. I thought I had things figured out. My brain still wont let me combine the wife I knew and the woman who broke me. So that makes communicating with her hard. I just try to avoid her when I am really low.

Am I making progress? I don't know. I still don't know what I can and want to do.

I'm sorry about your sister, though I suppose its good she's getting help. Why don't you speak with her?
I have 4 sisters and I only talk to one of them regularly. That is also something new. I wasn't close to all of them most of my life. I am the youngest child and my sisters are much older than me. I don't even have any memories of any of them living in the same house as me. My father ran them all off. As soon as they could get married, pregnant, or join a circus they left town. As the only boy, I was my "fathers son". I still haven't lived that down. So basically we were never close, and everyone moved away from each other. Two of my sisters I wouldn't even recognize if they walked past me.

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