Sure. I thought I knew my W, but events taught me I didn't. Hell, I thought I knew myself, but I didn't. (I had imagined I'd crumble if W cheated; I didn't.) How could I continue to communicate in the old ways? How could I believe what I received from my W when I had misjudged her so badly?
As a result of the breakdown in comms (because my W didn't communicate honestly - her failure, not mine*), I decided that we had to start from the beginning. We had to ask for what we wanted clearly. A former therapist used to tell me to 'say it so a 4 year old would understand'. It's amazing how much that focuses one's mind on the essentials.
I like/don't like _____.
I want/don't want _____.
Will you do _____?
I like your analogy to 15 year olds, although I wasn't sure I still liked my W. We did essentially what 15 year olds do, but with more skill: we asked questions, listened to responses, noted the nonverbals that went with each comment....
W thinks we did hysterical bonding ('HB'). I'm not sure, because it turned out that we both wanted more sex than we had been doing.
* TBH, W thinks I don't communicate much of what I'm thinking - but I'm honest in what I do show and say; she wasn't. Dishonesty is a giant impediment in relationships, and dishonesty led to her A.
[This message edited by SI Staff at 4:25 PM, Monday, October 17th]
fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.