Good morning. I'll try to keep this somewhat brief although, on this topic, I feel like I could write a book.
As has been pointed out, one of the critical requirements for reconciliation is time. There really is no substitute. If you think about it, you probably had a girlfriend in high school and you thought she was the bomb (ok, if you didn't I'm sure that you will understand my analogy). Then (unless you married her), you broke up and you thought, "How will I ever get past this?" Well, you did. And if you're anything like me you probably look back on that time of your life and just shake your head and smile.
In a small way that experience is reflective of what you are going through now - though on a significantly smaller scale. The lesson to take is that as time moves along we are able to look at our emotional experiences more objectively. We can step back and see them without them altering our daily life or our interactions with others. And, unfortunately, two months past discovery is simply WAY too soon for that to have happened.
So... lesson one: how long does it take to get there? Well, here's the honest answer - 6+ years down the road and I STILL think about my wife's affair. It's still in my head and probably always will be. But it no longer encompasses me. It no longer affects my relationship. For me... it took a solid 3 years to begin truly moving forward. I'm sure that time frame varies but it certainly does not occur at 2 months. You're simply going to need to hang in there.
Second lesson: your healing will be directly tied to your wife's actions. Time alone will NOT heal this wound. Furthermore, ALL of the typical requirements for reconciliation - no contact, transparency, etc. - ALL the things that are recommended in the days/months after discovery are only the tip of the iceberg. Without them there can be no reconciliation... so, yes, they are an absolute requirement. However, a time will come when you realize that your wife is actually no longer cheating. She has, in fact, recommitted to the marriage. You will no longer feel worried every time she steps out of the house or when you see her texting from across the room.
Yet you will still hurt.
The "better marriage" of which I speak will only occur when she does something super important - and it's something that not every person (certainly not every WS) is capable of doing.... and that is putting you and the marriage above herself. Simple, huh?
There are a ton of people who do this naturally (I am one of them and it sounds like you are, too). There are also people who need to learn this critical skill - and still others who are simply incapable.
My wife actually needed a come-to-Jesus moment in which she FINALLY, after almost 25 years, realized that she had to put me first. Period. She had to come to me. Be an active "giver" in our marriage. Do things just because she knew it would make me feel good - even if she didn't want. And, yes, that includes sex in all its positions, frequency, and variations. Anything I wanted or needed, she needed to be in. That was a huge realization and transformation for her. In fact, I'm not sure that I ever recall her doing that in all the years I had known her. It required her to put away her selfishness... something that required introspection and therapy and time and, maybe, an internal awakening.
However, THAT realization was mission critical to ME. I needed to see this type of effort - and see it on a consistent basis.
So, in regard to this lesson, what I learned is that my wife didn't innately know how to heal me. In truth, she really didn't know how to be a good partner. And this became part of the lesson that we BOTH had to learn. I needed her to be a better partner and she needed me to help her become one.
I had to tell her - point blank - what I needed from her. I had to learn to communicate - the same thing that I had been so awful at for the first 20 years of my marriage. I had to sit her down at the kitchen table, look her right in the eyes, and say, "There are things I need. They are non-negotiable. The first one is ______." I had to lay it out to her, plain and simple. And guess what? It was embarrassing as hell for me - I was brought up in a way that suggested that you don't talk that way to girls. But I had to learn to talk to my wife so that she knew what I needed... after all, how else would she know? You see, I always thought that she simply SHOULD know... like she should somehow see through me (have you read "No More Mr. Nice Guy????).
In essence, I realized that she needed to come around to me - and, yet, I needed to come around to her, too. I talk about this when I discuss couples moving TOWARD each other. When the time comes in your marriage when you realize that you're not leaving - and SHE'S not leaving - you're actually going to fight through this infidelity shit and try to come out the other side - you have to move TOWARD each other.
And that's really lesson number 3. You will have to learn (down the road, it's still too raw right now) that your wife - just like you - is not perfect. Not just because of the affair... that will be old hat by the time you learn this... but as a human. We all are. For example, I got upset the other night because after (finally) learning to initiate sex she turned me down. What?!? WTF!!! After she cheats on me she is now going to turn me, her husband, down?
But guess what? She was tired. And she's allowed to be tired. Just because (years ago) she jumped up to fuck some guy doesn't mean that she ALWAYS has to be on call for me. People can't live like that and my expectation of it was inappropriate, affair or no affair. And, yes, there was a time when I did demand it because I was still hurt. But healing means that we BOTH need to heal, and understand, and show empathy... and move toward one another. There comes a time when the WS can no longer live like a second class citizen in the marriage - your wife will have to regain her "status" and be on equal footing - despite her affair.
And that time will come - if you want it to come. If not, you will continue to play the game that so many on this site continue to play. A reconciled marriage that maintains the same shitty parameters that were present before the affair. A BS that continues to suffer.
Why be that person? You have an opportunity that very few people have in their marriage - you have a chance to hit the do-over button. You think you're going to get that with someone new? That person will have their OWN baggage. But here you get the chance to start fresh... to make new parameters and a new way for your marriage to proceed - in a way that makes you TRULY happy. And, if one of you isn't up for it, then end the marriage. Simple! But if you've decided to give it a go... then give it the very best shot you've got. But that's a lesson for two years from now
Wow - I have a lot to say on this matter but will end here. Please feel free to each out either here on via PM.
Good luck, brother.
[This message edited by LifeisCrazy at 9:43 AM, July 10th (Tuesday)]