Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong
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Navigation »Talk About Marriage »Talk About Divorce and Separation »Considering Divorce or Separation » Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong

Considering Divorce or Separation If you're considering divorce or separation, this is the place to talk.

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Old 02-18-2012, 03:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong

Well...after 11 long years of triggers and mind movies, my fog has lifted! After spending too many hours reading everyone's stories as well as their responses to mine, my head is clearer than it has been in a long time.

I now realize that my wife's actions were inexcusable in having an ongoing PA with the man who I not only thought was my best friend, but someone who had become a close family friend as well. It was also wrong for me to not be honest with her and tell her about my triggers and bad memories and how this has all affected me and changed who I am.

We got bad advice from a MC who said I needed to take blame, and I know that I also shifted all of the rest of the blame to him for "manipulating her". This was how I survived and moved on. She didn't do this to me, it was him and my actions? I loved her and my family and was willing to do whatever to keep it together and show our friends as well as this OM POS that I won and we would be fine, maybe even better than b4?

I believe the events that transpired during the affair as well as the time leading up to D-day put me into shock and I was never allowed to deal with my anger. I went on a vacation with this X BF POS, I came home and bought her a new ring and apologized for not being more supportive of her, and I basically renewed my vows as I gave her the ring. At this time she could have chose to call it off. Instead she went away with him and 2 of her sisters on a cruise that he paid for, and she accepted more expensive jewelry, and I found out by calling the ship to send her flowers. He flew home from the next port and she called me crying and talked of not being able to face me and she thought about jumping ship. I had to deal with worrying about her, as well as my anger, hurt, shock, etc...for days before seeing her again!

Yes, we had problems in our marriage but she could have chose us....at any time during this horrid affair she could have called it off and chose us, but it only ended because they were caught!

So this is where I am. I have had 11 long years since then with many good times and memories. I'm thankful my kids were able to grow up and stay in our house. I'm thankful my Mom had me as well as my wife there for her until the day she died as my wife was a loving and caring daughter in law to her. But I am ashamed that I was not honest about my feelings and kept them hidden often hurting inside and lashing out in anger at her for what probably seemed like no reason.

We have had ongoing problems in the bedroom because pre D-day it was all about making her feel good and that made me feel good...Post D-day it has been a release and although she enjoys sex, I was just going through the motions trying to get through it and things often didn't work as well causing more triggers and self-esteem issues for me. She has always been good about it and understanding but I could see the disappointment in her eyes.

I am starting my own therapy next week but I really think I will need to move on and I am sad. At some point something died? Sure I've always said I trust her and I really don't believe she's done anything since...but I didn't know or think she would then so??? Since the fog lifted, I have figured out that I was probably in shock, and probably had/have post traumatic stress disorder.

I now realize I have been going through the motions and living life...but not truely happy and alive! Sure I've had some great times, but I have not felt happy for a long time, maybe even since b4 the affair and that probably contributed? It doesn't matter...late mid-life crisis (I'm 52), reality check, facing my own mortality...whatever, I need to be alone for awhile and find my happiness.

I feel bad and guilty but In have done for everyone else my entire life and I need time for me. I am hoping my wife can stay in the house (at least for now) and she says she will wait until I decide because she wants me to be happy but she chooses me. I wish she would have felt that way when the affair started...I owe this to myself! Updates to follow.....
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Old 02-18-2012, 04:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong

I think you are doing the right thing. Good luck Friend!
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Old 02-18-2012, 09:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I think separation is the fair for both of you
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Old 02-18-2012, 10:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I think your priority should only be you at this point. She lost the right and privilege of being with you when she cheated, but doubly do when she kept him around and then went on the cruise.

She deserves to be alone for the rest of time and a day.
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Old 02-18-2012, 10:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong

I feel glad and sad for you and your wife. I think your wife should thank you that you gave her 11 more years than she deserved. A separation will do you good.
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Old 02-18-2012, 11:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong

Our divorce was finalized a year ago. Similarly, after claiming he would never cheat & leave me again, he did with a newer younger version (they are still together 2+ years). The reality that he knowingly chose to put me through such painful betrayal still catches me off guard and I have to admit, makes my heart hurt. I understand some people consistently put their needs first but it's hard to understand how they can do so when they know the anguish & heartache they are causing. I suppose they are just skillful at turning away from it as if it's not there.
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Old 02-19-2012, 10:55 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Oh struggling4ever,

You owe it to yourself to start living, and once you do , you may find things look a whole lot better than you ever imagined ...

11 years... wow! no one can ever say you didn't try ....

~sammy
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Old 02-19-2012, 10:27 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I think your priority should only be you at this point. She lost the right and privilege of being with you when she cheated, but doubly do when she kept him around and then went on the cruise.

She deserves to be alone for the rest of time and a day.
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Yeah,,,only if I was bitter and vengeful.... but I'm not. I actually feel she deserves to be with someone who worships the ground she walks on...and I believe she learned from her betrayal and it wouldn't happen again..I just can't live with the triggers and memories....she has been very supportive.
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Old 02-23-2012, 10:10 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong

If you had it to do over again, would you stay those 11 years, or wish you had moved on to this stage 11 years ago?

I ask because I am 9+ months out and recognizing that while I wish for R, Idon't think I have it in me to get past her transgressions - the memories will haunt me forever. I could stay and have a 'decent' life, we can get along just fine, she does not want to split and it would benefit our 7 yr old son for me to stay.

But I am pretty confident that once he is grown and out, I'd arrive at where you are now. Something is missing, it's been removed (complete faith/trust/belief in her & us) and cannot be replaced.

So I wonder which you feel is the right path based on your experience here?
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Old 02-23-2012, 01:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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If you had it to do over again, would you stay those 11 years, or wish you had moved on to this stage 11 years ago?

I ask because I am 9+ months out and recognizing that while I wish for R, Idon't think I have it in me to get past her transgressions - the memories will haunt me forever. I could stay and have a 'decent' life, we can get along just fine, she does not want to split and it would benefit our 7 yr old son for me to stay.

But I am pretty confident that once he is grown and out, I'd arrive at where you are now. Something is missing, it's been removed (complete faith/trust/belief in her & us) and cannot be replaced.

So I wonder which you feel is the right path based on your experience here?
I can't tell you what you should do, and I find it hard to answer what I should have done? In my case I still had 2 teenage boys at home, we worked together in a small business, did everything together and I think it would have been too hard at the time. Neither of us could have made it financially alone. She agreed to no contact and therapy, and we somehow moved forward?

Knowing what I know now...I would have found a way to leave if I could have a do over. We still get along great, she's fun, attractive, and I believe faithful. But unfortunately I have never recovered in the bedroom. I honestly trust her sexually but I always doubt her or second guess her on even the smallest things, and I have an inner anger so I sometimes am short or snap at her without good cause. I know the triggers and memories will eventually fade again, but the damage is already done and it can't be changed. No one in a relationship should have to put up with their partner having sex with someone else for any reason. I can understand how EA's can happen, but before it goes physical, you should talk or leave.

About 3 weeks ago, I moved out of the bedroom, we plan on getting finances in order and selling the house, so in time we will at least be seperated. I know I need to dismantle what we had before I can even think about continuing, but it's hard for me to pull the trigger based on what happened so many years ago. It doesn't seem fair to her, but then it wasn't fair to me???
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Old 02-24-2012, 08:30 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Getting closer to a decision - and staying strong

Yes it's ironic that "affair" has the word "fair" in it at all.

I totally understand that you couldn't possibly tell me what to do, and I shouldn't have asked it that way -- but thanks for your insight; much appreciated.

And I am sorry for your pain. I completely get it. Good luck to you.
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Old 02-24-2012, 09:30 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Struggling,

Your situation is heartbreaking, and a man who can still look back on all the pain and still find compassion for his wife is a truly incredible person. I will look forward to your updates, and I hope you can find peace of mind above all as you go through this.
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Old 02-24-2012, 12:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Struggling,

Your situation is heartbreaking, and a man who can still look back on all the pain and still find compassion for his wife is a truly incredible person. I will look forward to your updates, and I hope you can find peace of mind above all as you go through this.
Thank you
I truly don't know how I did it, I know why I did it. I always thought we were "soulmates" and my 2 sons were the same age as my younger brothers were when my parents were divorced and it really affected them. I thought I should teach them that you can work through anything. Add that to the fact that the OM was trying to buy his way into my family for quite some time and my pride wouldn't let him win.

I used to be that guy that would hand write a card or try to find the one that expressed where my heart was at. We used to talk about being that old couple on a park bench. That part of me left with the affair. I now have a hard time finding a card cause it can't talk about forever, and I see the old couple on the park bench and I get angry....it's a "trigger". I was recently at a funeral where a young relative died of a drug overdose. His girlfriend who was there with their 6 month old baby had the pastor read a letter she wrote. She said "we talked of growing old together"...I'm sitting in a funeral and I wanted to hit the chair in front of me! I need to let it all go!

I look back now and think about how horrid her affair was and it kills me...As we have talked about it I have broke down as if it happened yesterday and the memories are vivid! I have the guilt of begging her to stay (wow - just typing that line makes me wonder where my head was) and we have had some good memories, but I was never honest. The phrase you have to be honest with yourself opened this up for me... Once I was and my eyes opened up, I was forever changed.

I don't believe I can stay...I can't keep having the triggers and I feel I need a clean slate...and she doesn't know it yet but I believe she deserves better too. Everyone deserves to have someone who loves them, admires them, trust them, and has passion for them. We lost parts of that long ago....
Thanks again, but for now, it has to be all about me....

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Old 02-24-2012, 03:08 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I look back now and think about how horrid her affair was and it kills me...As we have talked about it I have broke down as if it happened yesterday and the memories are vivid! I have the guilt of begging her to stay (wow - just typing that line makes me wonder where my head was) and we have had some good memories, but I was never honest. The phrase you have to be honest with yourself opened this up for me... Once I was and my eyes opened up, I was forever changed.

I don't believe I can stay...I can't keep having the triggers and I feel I need a clean slate...and she doesn't know it yet but I believe she deserves better too. Everyone deserves to have someone who loves them, admires them, trust them, and has passion for them. We lost parts of that long ago....
Thanks again, but for now, it has to be all about me....
Struggling,
Have you been to IC or MC?

I know about triggers (as does my H), trust issues, etc but I hear time helps w/ the pain and less mind movies etc. You sound like you still have so many feelings for your wife that starting over could be possible w/ help if you both wanted it. I have kids and have seen how kids development/spirit are influenced by such a change.

I don't know if there is such a thing as a clean slate even w/ someone new.
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Old 02-24-2012, 03:42 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Read his first post/full thread, mama... Struggling's been noble and started over 11 years ago.
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