My .02 is that a series of decisions made contrary to what is known to be wrong points to a lack integrity, but is no way a mistake. It was a conscience decision, several of them actually.
You will never feel better by engaging in this manner with your wife.
It is clear to me she is avoiding digging into her why. I think IC should be a requirement. She keeps dropping the M word and I think you need to diplomatically tell her that a mistake is not accurate. It makes it hard to trust her when she can't even be honest with herself.
Look man. You are smack dab in the middle of the forest, but you need to detach enough to see all of the forest not just the fee trees in the middle of it.
Most of your problems are because you can't believe her words and likely some of her actions. It is her job to rebuild trust and find a better reason.
If she isn't digging into why then that is why your gut is screaming at you. She can't be honest with herself. She still protecting her own self image and is afraid to be accountable for finding answers that will let you move on.
I think in IC you need to work on your own independence or your co-dependent thinking.
Your safety is dependent on you not your wife. You need to entertain the possibility that your W does not wish to do any real digging and thus where you currently are may be inplace for years.
Focus on you. Detach and create some distance with your wife. She takes for granted that you want to work things out and it prevents her from doing her heavy lifting.
You say she is doing everything she can, but my experience (and likely your gut) tells you tgat is simply not true.
Detach, work on yourself. She may wake up and begin the real work of finding her real why. Until she figures out what she was trying to accomplish versus generic character flaws that we all have. Every human being can be stupid and selfish, but not all of us have an A.
You can't trust her not because there are more details, but because the why question answer she gives isn't deep enough to be accurate.
Her threats to leave are manipulation and only meant to blunt your questions. If you suggested that you wanted to leave I think her true colors will come out.
Your W clearly has abandonment issues and is deathly afraid you are going to drop her without warning. I would make you agreeing to stay with her linked directly to an honest effort in IC to dig in her real why.
Sorry, but most WS don't do the real work until they hit rock bottom. She has not gotten their yet because you both are looking at the M. The M did not cause the A. Your wife did. She has a lot of work to do and likely won't see as a requirement for real R until you detach and work on things within you. What parts of the A make your heart hurt?
Tou both need space to work on yourselves. A new M can happen later, but you can't build the old M back. Too many of the parts of that M are broken beyond repair.
I am not saying yor relationship is over or doomed, but the current way you both are approaching isn't offering results and it is time to try a different approach.
I woild make it clear you need time and space to work on yourself and if she really wants to R then she should do the same.
Sure she might let her fear of facing herself get in the way, but at least you know she doesn't feel the need to fix anything. At that point D and a life with her in it as little as possible is your only chance for safety.
What is familiar isn't always safe and what is safe isn't always familiar.
[This message edited by numb&dumb at 2:25 PM, Thursday, October 20th]