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I destroyed my husband

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Flawed posted 10/7/2019 12:06 PM

LD - I come from a family of avoiders - avoiders of conflict and avoiders of negative emotions. One of the most enlightening books I've ready is It's Not Always Depression, by Hilary Jacobs Hendel. The title is a little misleading, but she explains a framework called the Change Triangle that she uses in IC to help clients get in touch with their core emotions (anger, fear, sadness, disgust, joy, excitement, sexual excitement). She posits that "inhibitory" emotions (anxiety, shame, and guilt) often mask these core emotions, and that we each learn different types of defenses to avoid feeling inhibitory or core emotions.

This book helped me understand my reactions to emotional triggers (why my impulse is to get defensive), and started me on the path towards connecting my physical reactions to specific emotions. I was not at all in tune with my emotions or how my body felt different emotions. I'm still working on it.

What has helped me more than anything is to get curious when I feel "something." Being able to name how you feel is incredibly empowering. Once you can name how you feel you can ask yourself WHY you feel that way. This might help you learn about and understand your most sensitive triggers, which for me usually trace back to my core fears of being abandoned and of not being loved and accepted.

Another incredible resource is Brene Brown's Rising Strong. This is really hard work, and it's frustrating as hell sometimes. But it does get easier as you learn more and more about yourself. The more you know yourself, the more confident you will be in sharing your authentic self with others.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/8/2019 20:34 PM

You have a choice - an opportunity. You can keep on keeping on. Rug sweep. Minimize. Hope it all goes away.
Or you can decide to work on becoming the person you want to be.

I want to work on me. I don't want to continue the way I am. I want to be able to stand up for myself without fear of confrontation. I want to be able say something without sounding selfish. I want to be able to express my feelings/thoughts and be able to defend them.

I don't have a problem identifying what I'm feeling, it's getting it out that's the problem. I over analyze it and can't find the right words to express it. I doubt myself. I now worry if I'm sounding selfish. I worry that I won't be able to defend my thought when asked about it. I also have the problem of putting myself first. I think I'm putting him first, but it ends up not being that. The conversation I have in my head is completely different than what is interpreted.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/9/2019 16:50 PM

He came home yesterday. Our daughter and I made little welcome home signs for him. She was crazy excited to see him, started screaming before he even went through the doors. Unfortunately, he didn't even acknowledge me, not even a "hi." I expected that. I should have been sitting next to him during the service and wasn't because of my choices. When we got home I stayed out in the living room while they hung out in his room. I didn't want to intrude on their time. After she went to bed, I asked him if he wanted some company. I spent about an hour with him. I scratched his head, rubbed his back and laid down with him. I was very happy when he put his arm around me. We didn't really talk at all, but at least he let me in for the night.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/10/2019 05:41 AM

I know many have said "he will go back and forth on what he wants dozens of times" "it's not over until the papers are signed." I don't know about that. I wanted to believe all of that. I had hope, I still do even though I'm supposed to let go of the outcome. I think those papers are going to be signed, and there won't be that special second marriage to him a few years later.

He wants to be with me, but he says it's not good for him. He will lose his sanity. He can't know for sure if we can find happiness together. I chose me during the affair, and now he has to choose himself. I told him I will do whatever he wants, but that doesn't mean that I actually want divorce. Then I went right back to begging him to choose us. I know, that's selfish, I even said it to him. I know that's not letting go of the outcome, but how can you just let the person go without a fight, without begging? I told him I will give him a divorce if that's what he wants, but I don't know how to stop wanting him, to stop begging for him, to stop doing the pick me dance.

He talked about the custody arrangement he thought of. I didn't argue about it. I just sat there thinking about how she's going to lose time with us and we're both losing time with our daughter. I sat there thinking how I will have to move out of our home. How I will have to say goodbye to our dogs. How everything is going to change for all of us. How all of this is because of me. How I truly sabotaged everyone's life.

I apologized for putting all of this on him, for making him feel all of this. I told him that I really really wanted to keep this chance to show him and to have him see that we could be happy with each other. I started crying, getting that empty pit feeling in my chest. He apologized because he wasn't planning on talking about this last night, he just couldn't lay next to me anymore. I asked what if we start from the beginning, just friends notbing more. He said he would still want me. I'm thinking to myself "why is that a bad thing? That must mean something!" I say what if we separate, live apart then he chooses when he wants to see me. I won't always be there in his face. He said he doesn't know how that would work on things, we would just not talk about it. I said I would come over and talk whenever he wanted me there. I was trying to think of anything I've seen on here as things that have worked for some.

I wish I had a crystal ball to show me if he can actually be happy with me or if he really does need to cut me out of his life. If he could be happy I would show him that and still beg for him. If it showed that he couldn't, then I would go draw up the papers for him. I don't want him to be tortured. As much as I want him, I don't want him to feel like he's dying. I can't even get the words out now that I'm trying to say. Knowing that you're the one who has inflicted so much pain.

BluesPower posted 10/10/2019 09:06 AM

I have pretty much stayed off of your thread for several reasons, but mostly because you were getting better advice than I could give.

I will say this, your last post, right before this one... While there are a few places where you sound selfish, for the most part I think you are really starting to get it. FINALLY.

No, you really don't understand how your H feels but you are getting closer.

And you are right, it may not work out, but...

The fact that you love him enough to let him go if you have too, as much as it hurts, that is where you need to be.

That is where you get into the self sacrifice that will never makeup for what you did, but it sure will help over the long hall.

Keep your chin up and continue to be there...

[This message edited by BluesPower at 9:07 AM, October 10th (Thursday)]

pinkpggy posted 10/10/2019 09:25 AM

I will say its been interesting to read his thread and yours, the vary so greatly its a good example of how a BS walks through this and a WS walks though it. I wish I had this resource after my dday because it would have given me insight on how to help my spouse. I didn't find SI until 7 months later.

I know you said you don't think there is a chance, but you just cannot give up. I have been in your same spot and it is so so early, there is still lots of work to be done and lots of mending. Just keep doing what you are doing, stay consistent, stay emotionally availble and keep putting in the work. He will go up and down 100x in the next few months.

Letting go of the outcome is easy to say, but its scary and emotional. Its hard to accept that we put ourselves, our spouse, our children in this situation, and now we are dealing with the fallout. Time is on your side, really and truly, each new day is a new step in the right direction.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/10/2019 11:26 AM

I'm not giving up. I just need someplace to talk. I don't have any friends to talk to about this. Three know, but I don't feel comfortable talking to them about it. They don't know what this all feels like. I feel bad going to them.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/10/2019 11:28 AM

Letting go of the outcome is easy to say, but its scary and emotional. Its hard to accept that we put ourselves, our spouse, our children in this situation, and now we are dealing with the fallout. Time is on your side, really and truly, each new day is a new step in the right direction.

It is 100% scary and emotional. It is 100% hard to accept what I did to my husband and daughter. Those are the feelings that I can't put into words. I don't know if I believe that time is on my side. New step in a better direction, yes, time, I don't know.

Need2Do posted 10/10/2019 11:42 AM

To LifeDestroyer, firstly, as a WW, I am so sorry you are here. My BS and I have been following both your journey and your BS as we have been looking for solid advice from others who have been in this same position to help us through this ourselves.

This is also the first time I am posting on any forum, so I will apologize in advance if I divulge too much information, not enough or am inappropriate. Fair warning, I can be long winded (insert feeble smile here).

I am not sure how to start, or where to begin. But here is a brief summary of our life:
17 years ago, I had my first affair on my BS while I was working an extra job as a bartender with a regular customer, he didn't divorce me, he forgave me. I didn't give him a timeline, I didn't talk about the sex, I didn't continue going to IC, We didn't continue with MC (from what we have recalled together, the therapist made my BS take 50% responsibility), I 'rug-swept' the affair and focused on 'making everything better'. We were living in a small town, sold the house and moved away from my AP.

We had 3 young boys at the time (each of us had one from previous relationships, and one together). My BS loved me and his family so much, he ate the shit sandwich I gave him. I asked him to marry me in 2006, to prove to him that I loved him, and we did. But the first affair eroded away our marriage, our relationship. I didn't do what was necessary...not even the bear minimum to create safety for him. I wasn't transparent, I didn't help him rebuild himself, from the humiliation I put on him. The emasculation. The distrust. There is so much I didn't do...

In those years since the affair, our youngest was diagnosed with PDD-NOS (Autism Spectrum) and began having full tonic clonic seizures. Life started throwing crap at us left and right, and we were alone, we didn't have family or friends for support. We were told not to expect him to even graduate highschool...he did.

Its now 3 years from D-Day of my second affair. An affair I had promised wouldn't happen 17 years ago.

I am re-doing my time line, during my 2nd affair, I wrote a journal that I had tried to edit before giving it to my BH, he suspected the affair, and got a copy of the original (and I am grateful for that now, then I wasn't), I am using that to assist for dates, thoughts, feelings, ways to trigger additional memories that I didn't write about (its hard to not input what I currently feel though). Also adding to it details of each of my encounters to make a complete picture (what we have is disjointed)

I am being more transparent with my thoughts, more direct and to point - all because of the advice that has been posted for your benefit.

I am no way close to where I should be at 3 years out, and my BH is no where near starting the healing process, this is on me, not having done all of this sooner. There is an intense sense of urgency now. My BH cannot continue feeling like this. He needs a reason to continue with me or leave. I honestly don't know what else I can do...What I do know, this is what I needed to do 3 years ago and didn't, I don't know if you can make up for lost time...but I am grateful for every moment my BH is home with me, every time he walks in the door after work, every time he just talks to me. I know I can't mess this up. Time to pull up the 'big girl panties', and get to work, show him he is 'plan A'. If he choses to leave...well, I forced him to make that choice, because of my two affairs, but it doesn't mean that it would hurt any less.

So, I did say that I can be long winded, but from experience, if you want a future, start building trust, if it feels uncomfortable, if it feels wrong...then it probably is the right thing to do...so I am clear, when you are talking to your BH, not someone else...my BH coached me with this: just be blunt and straight to the point...I am taking that to heart...and it isn't always easy to do...

I hope that you and your BH find your way back to eachother.

Justsomelady posted 10/10/2019 12:37 PM

Regardless of the ultimate outcome and respecting how hard this is (an understatement) you are being brave in talking to him about these things and letting him state these things to you, having him tell you where he is at right now. So many canít take the hard conversations, you are learning not to avoid. Sending good vibes.

beenthereinco posted 10/10/2019 12:40 PM

There has been a lot of TT in this process. I hope that you have finally given him the full truth. I haven't looked to see if you offered a polygraph or one has been asked for. Have you taken a poly? Have you offered to? Maybe you could be proactive here and set one up if you haven't taken one. Give him something to cling to that is the truth. Just a thought.

Need2Do posted 10/10/2019 17:04 PM

Honestly BeenThere, I thought I had given him everything, the whole truth, but I was missing something...everything I gave him was very clinical, emotionless, and I was very emotional at that time. I still am, hard to keep a handle on it. I don't know about others experiences, but I went through times during my affair and after where I thought of taking a permanent vacation. I think that is when the gravity of what I was doing/had done tried to creep up on me, and I couldn't cope, I am not sure, I haven't started yet to dig there. I am still working on the 'why's' for both of my affairs, though I believe I have that more understood.
In response to the polygraphs, where we live they cost $2100.00. But if we take a vacation we can have it done for a fraction of the price, even with currency conversion. That is next on my list of to dos, once I am done doing my time line, and filling in blanks in my journal.
I remind myself every day, I cannot control the outcome, just me. But I can have hope.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/11/2019 13:41 PM

He has scheduled my polygraph for this Sunday. He wants me to fail it so he can move on. If I pass it, then he will continue to hurt he said.

I do not want him to hurt. I have told him that what I want the most is for him to be happy. While I really wish that can be with me, his happiness is more important than my own right now.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/11/2019 16:24 PM

I went into a numb state for the rest of the school day.

His comment about the test, I feel like it's a catch 22. Pass and prove that I didn't hide anymore but have him stay in pain. Fail and he can hand me divorce papers, I have to move out, and he can be happy again. He then said instead of failing on purpose to just move out and save him the $350.

Tomorrow night I'm taking our daughter to a Halloween mommy and me dance. I'll get to give her a happy memory before her world changes forever, probably.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/11/2019 16:44 PM

My BS asked my dad to watch her Sunday. I just got to my dad's to pick up those dance tickets. He asks "so what are you guys doing Sunday, the movies?" I looked at him and said "no, I'm taking a Polygraph test." He had no idea and had a shocked face. I figured my BS told him what we were doing. So, that was very interesting to tell my dad.

pinkpggy posted 10/11/2019 16:55 PM

I really hope you've told him everything because the devastation will be extreme if you are still lying.

LifeDestroyer posted 10/11/2019 18:56 PM

I have told him everything. He asked a bunch of questions today while I was at school. I answered them all truthfully. I have no idea how many questions he will have or the tester will ask.

When I got home he was outside cutting these notebooks for me that I asked for. I was very surprised to see him doing that after the anger he had for me today. He then handed me my drink from the kitchen that I left in there by accident. I know that is very tiny, but I was surprised and thankful. Tomorrow he has an event for a hobby he does. I hope he can focus on it and do well.
By the end of the school day all I could think about was our daughter and what might happen with her. I would like to talk with him tonight, not sure about what though or if it's a good idea after today.

Justsomelady posted 10/11/2019 19:08 PM

I get the impulse, buy think you know failing the polygraph on purpose would be the most misguided thing you could possibly do. and it would hurt him more regardless of what he says - as all he really wanted was you to be truthful so he can wrap his head around it. No other way to do so.

Glad you had a good moment today.

Will be sending you good vibes - and am glad you have all the truth out there.

[This message edited by Justsomelady at 7:08 PM, October 11th (Friday)]

BraveSirRobin posted 10/12/2019 07:29 AM

His comment about the test, I feel like it's a catch 22. Pass and prove that I didn't hide anymore but have him stay in pain. Fail and he can hand me divorce papers, I have to move out, and he can be happy again. He then said instead of failing on purpose to just move out and save him the $350.
I think he's right about failing on purpose. Why would you do that? That would prove you're still in the ongoing wayward mindset of trying to control him and his reactions with lies. This is the moment where you prove that you can give him the truth and let him decide what to do with it.

Just answer the questions honestly. No matter what he says, passing that test is better than failing it.

ff4152 posted 10/12/2019 09:02 AM


To echo what others have said, failing this test on purpose would be the worst thing you could do. It would prove to him, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you didnít love and respect him enough to give him the truth. If you truly love your husband, be honest tomorrow. Continue to show him that he is worth fighting for.

FWIW, I think passing the polygraph will give him some small measure of peace. It will show that there are no more lies and will give him a better idea of where you both stand.

I really hope that you pass tomorrow and continue to wish you both a way forward from this.

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