I can't seem to even function anymore...
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Coping with Infidelity Relationship recovery from the destructiveness of infidelity.

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Old 10-20-2011, 09:05 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default I can't seem to even function anymore...

I could really use some suggestions on how to move on, how to stop crying, how to not cringe when I see my husband or how to not replay the visions of his affairs over and over in my mind.


I've been married for six years and together for a total of 11 years. I found out in July that he'd been having an emotional affair with my best friend. I went to check the weather on his laptop and found email after email from MY friend open. Naturally I wanted to know why on earth he has emails from my friend and was sickened to realize that for months they'd been going back and forth almost constantly throughout the day texting or emailing back and forth their sexual thoughts and sexual fantasies with each other. They got unbelievably explicit with their talk. I thought he just communicated with customers that often... nope, he was doing all of this crap right in front of me and our kids. He claims nothing physical happened, I doubt that but can't prove otherwise. I thought all of that was going to destroy me, but then in late August, just when I started to feel like maybe, just maybe, I could move past knowing what he would do with my best friend ("friend" is long out of the picture!!!) I then found out that he'd been having an affair with another woman, which included her coming and meeting him on at least one of this three day "business trips" and enjoying plenty of sex with each other. He didn’t even have the audacity to use a condom. He’s had a vasectomy, but still, does he not care whatsoever that he could be bring some horrendous STD home to me??? Their affair went on for months although he swears they met up physically only once at the end of April. Apparently for awhile there were plans being made for her to move to around here and apparently they’d live happily ever after. She is from Canada though so a quick move wasn’t quite as easy as I’m sure they would have preferred. I also found self pornographic videos created by my husband, sent to her, and videos from her, sent to him. I can't express how sick it makes me. I’m sickened to know he’d even do such a thing.


I just don't know where to go from here. He swears that after all of this he realizes how much he loves me (that seems to be the standard line that cheaters use) and that he'll do anything to keep us together. I have to admit that there have been very positive changes in our house that I never in a million years would have thought would happen. He is trying. He is, but how do I move on? I want to stay together for the kids but also because of the positives we do have... we have 11 years of life invested with each other and have built ourselves a nice little life (aside from all this). I want to stay, but how do I ever look him in the eyes again with the slightest ounce of respect, or not cringe by him even putting his hand on my shoulder? The images that I have of him and her holed up in this hotel room for three days having a wonderful sex fest, just haunts me… All the while I’m at home coddling the kids because they miss dad who is away on “business”. How can I possibly move on? How can I possibly forgive? More than anything how can I at least get to the point where I feel like I can function again? Everything around me has gone to pot because I just couldn’t care less anymore to accomplish anything. I am nowhere near the emotionally present mom that my children need. I am a rollercoaster of feeling numb and then sobbing. I am a mess. If I didn't have kids I'd honestly question if continuing life would be worth it. After burying my cousin several months ago after she killed herself, I never, ever thought I could even contemplate that. And please understand, I am in no way whatsoever a suicide risk. I'd never do it. I don't have it my heart to hurt my kids like that anyway. I'd never do it, but I have to admit, I get it now, I get feeling that life is so awful that waking up tomorrow just doesn't seem worth it... it just all hurts too much. Again, I wouldn't do anything to myself, but I get how others can... it all just hurts way too much. And knowing that my closest and really only close friend was involved (and I later found out apparently knew he’d had this other affair going) this makes it that much more hurtful.


I feel like I’m dying inside, I can't breathe; I can't think straight or be the mom I want to be. I am miserable and I just don't know how to even look for the light at the end of the tunnel in this mess. We're doing counseling and it helps but regardless, I wake up each morning and it's like I get punched in the stomach the second I wake up and realize the crap that my husband has been pulling for over a year with at least two people, and I’m sure there are more.


Thanks for listening if nothing else. This just isn't something a person tells an acquaintance during small talk!

Last edited by Misery stinks; 10-21-2011 at 09:08 AM.
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Old 10-20-2011, 10:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: I can't seem to even function anymore...

I am so sorry that you are experiencing this misery. I've been there and completely understand how you feel. I have mixed feelings on this issue. Since I am now divorced and 40 I feel like I have some perspective.

1. Time will tell.
I have talked to men who have cheated. Some feel badly and disgusted with themselves. These are the redeemable handful. Other ones say they are sorry, but are really just biding their time until their next cheating opportunity pops up. If you are willing to put your emotional happiness on the line, wait. He will show you in due time whether he is truly willing to mend his ways. But in my book, once a cheater, always a cheater.

2. Fantasy vs Reality
You want to stay together for the kids. I get this. But the fantasy of a perfect marriage is over. Be sure you want to stay together because YOU want to and it is best for YOU. Not because you want to live up to some fictional American ideal.

3. I hate Canada too
My ex cheated on me with a 20 year old from Canada. Yup. 20, half my age. He's a pig. That's why we are over.

4. Man up
It's time for you to "man up." You need to find a new hobby or do something you've always wanted to do, go, experience. He's been living it up on your emotional dime. Go have some too. I'm not saying hire a gigilo, but make sure you are enjoying life to the fullest. Show him you are tough and will not fall to pieces if he walks. Be strong and don't be an emotional cry baby in front of him. Men hate that.

5. Hope for the best and expect the worst
Get your own bank account and stash some cash if you haven't already. Have an exit strategy just in case. Be prepared for him to leave. Where will you live? How? Revise your budget. Update your resume if you need to. You may not need the "disaster plan." But have one just in case you need it!

6. Don't let the crazy come out
Always maintain your dignity. No matter what happens, never say or do anything that will put you in a bad light. No stalking, damaging property, no revenge of any kind. Take the high road no matter what. (***** him out with your girlfriends, but never show him the "Crazy Women" side we all have when pushed. Check out the LeAnn Rimes song!)

7. Once trust is gone...
I'd have a hard time trusting again. But I've experienced 2 bad splits. Both cheated. I don't take it personally. I'm awesome. I hope you realize that about yourself too.

Since two men have violated my trust, it makes me think: if it is that easy to cheat on me the first time and I stumbled upon the evidence, why would I believe he won't try again. Second chances are allowed, but third chances make you a doormat. He will keep looking. He has cheated on you TWICE! Once with a close friend. I'm not sure he is worthy of you. If he can do it twice, what is to prevent it from happening again?

Good luck and I hope things work out for you!
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Old 10-21-2011, 12:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: I can't seem to even function anymore...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Misery stinks View Post
We're doing counseling and it helps but regardless, I wake up each morning and it's like I get punched in the stomach the second I wake up and realize the crap that my husband has been pulling for over a eyar with at least two people, and I’m sure there are more.

Thanks for listening if nothing else. This just isn't something a person tells an acquaintance during small talk!
First of all, I'm so sorry you're having to go through this pain. Many of us on TAM have lived it to varying degrees, adding the betrayal of a trusted friend adds to your emotional turmoil.

I bolded what caught my attention and may be important in determining if your husband is truly remorseful. Have you asked him if there are more? If so, what was his response?

If your DS really wants to change and more forward, he should reveal any and all previous affairs and indiscretions. He needs to be totally open and honest about anything and everything from the past and from now on. It's the only way you can even think about moving forward. If you somehow find it in yourself to recover and forgive his behavior from the past year, then find out he got oral sex from a stripper at a bachelor party 5 years ago, you will go right back to square one. I read somewhere rebuilding trust is like taking a bowling ball up the stairs. If you drop it, even near the top, it will go right back down to the bottom.

I realize hearing him confess his sordid past may seem like too much to handle, but I think it's the only way to move forward. Purge the past, absorb the information, then go to marriage counseling. Give yourself time to decide if you want to give him another chance. He should've exposed everything right after you busted him in the EA with your friend. Then you wouldn't have lost all those months in false recovery. The idea is to try recovery, but ensure there's no more bombshells. You may not be able to forgive him and rebuild trust, but you don't have a chance if he's still keeping secrets.

Good luck and I wish you well. Try to rest and take care of yourself. It will get better, with or without your husband by your side.
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Old 10-21-2011, 12:11 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: I can't seem to even function anymore...

Misery,

Moving forward through the healing process takes a lot of time. It's a game of inches and there is no magic wand. There are a few things that you can do to help keep you pointed in a positive direction:

1. Take care of yourself first and foremost. I don't mean that you get an hour everyday...I mean YOU get each and everyday. Your husband needs to pick up the slack you leave behind while you are "taking care of yourself." How does one do this? It's different, I suppose, for everyone....if you are a reader...read...if you hike..then hike...if you knit..then knit....doesn't really matter. Just do whatever it is that makes YOU..well ...you. You need time to calm your thoughts and need time to be very introspective. You have just had you entire identity ripped away...it is going to take some real time and patience to find it back.

2. Take everything your husband does with a grain of salt. Meaning...DO NOT TRUST HIM. I know this sounds like common sense, but believe me it is harder than it sounds. The last thing you need is to think he has turned it around...only to find out months later that he is still having affairs. Verify everything and demand nothing less than 100% transparency from your wayward. It is going to take a very long time for him to EARN your trust back...and the only way this is achieved is through constant verification.

3. The images will pass with time...lots and lots of time. It's one of the harder hurdles you will have to jump. Try and fight them off the best you can...I wrote an article on my blog about how I did it. It might help to give you some ideas. This is a war of small everyday battles...you win sometime you lose sometimes...just remember every small victory gets you one step closer to your goal.



good luck
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If you would like more help, check out my blog: http://myspousecheated.blogspot.com
My Story: http://talkaboutmarriage.com/coping-...ways-hope.html
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Old 10-21-2011, 07:51 AM   #5 (permalink)
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What's the blog?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoffrey Marsh View Post
Misery,

Moving forward through the healing process takes a lot of time. It's a game of inches and there is no magic wand. There are a few things that you can do to help keep you pointed in a positive direction:

1. Take care of yourself first and foremost. I don't mean that you get an hour everyday...I mean YOU get each and everyday. Your husband needs to pick up the slack you leave behind while you are "taking care of yourself." How does one do this? It's different, I suppose, for everyone....if you are a reader...read...if you hike..then hike...if you knit..then knit....doesn't really matter. Just do whatever it is that makes YOU..well ...you. You need time to calm your thoughts and need time to be very introspective. You have just had you entire identity ripped away...it is going to take some real time and patience to find it back.

2. Take everything your husband does with a grain of salt. Meaning...DO NOT TRUST HIM. I know this sounds like common sense, but believe me it is harder than it sounds. The last thing you need is to think he has turned it around...only to find out months later that he is still having affairs. Verify everything and demand nothing less than 100% transparency from your wayward. It is going to take a very long time for him to EARN your trust back...and the only way this is achieved is through constant verification.

3. The images will pass with time...lots and lots of time. It's one of the harder hurdles you will have to jump. Try and fight them off the best you can...I wrote an article on my blog about how I did it. It might help to give you some ideas. This is a war of small everyday battles...you win sometime you lose sometimes...just remember every small victory gets you one step closer to your goal.



good luck
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Old 10-21-2011, 08:06 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: I can't seem to even function anymore...

it's in his signature

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Old 10-21-2011, 09:27 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: I can't seem to even function anymore...

Thank you so much for the responses! I didn't expect anyone to get through my novel of a post much less respond with so much help and suggestions!! The tips that you guys gave are so helpful! More helpful than any of these affair books that I've been reading!


Smarty blue: You're comment of "3. I hate Canada too” really made me laugh. It's silly that just because she was from Canada that I suddenly despise the place. But I do. My daughter was playing yesterday and with her friend pretending to go to Canada. It made me sick to hear her saying the word!!!


Saffron: You asked if I've asked my husband if there have been more. I have asked and asked and he repeatedly says no. Of course he said no before I found out about the one he'd actually gotten really serious with. So his credibility is shot. But I really have done a tremendous amount of searching and I can't find anything else. So, maybe he really is telling the truth, this time, and there isn't anything else. His response to me is that he can make up something to tell me if that would make me feel better but that he has nothing to admit to me when there has been nothing else. He has been open to answering the questions I have about the situations but as far as admitting to anything else, either he won't or there isn't anything else to admit. I wish I could somehow prove that there was nothing else because it sure would make me feel better!


GM: I'll take a look at your blog. If you have some things on there about how to somehow get past the images that haunt me, then I’ll make sure to check it out!!


All of the responses were so helpful. Thank you so much. I will definitely be taking the suggestions to heart and using them. Thank you so much!!! I really appreciate the help so much!!
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Old 10-21-2011, 09:32 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks AlmostRecovered! Sorry, couldn't see it on my phone.
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Old 10-21-2011, 09:40 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: I can't seem to even function anymore...

You should have seen me while watching the Stanley Cup!

And I needed some tonic water the other day. I refused to buy any Canada Dry products. The sales guy thought I was nuts. But you understand! Damn maple leaves piss me off too these days. Its a shame to hate an entire country because of one person. And it wasn't even her fault. It was his.

Good luck to you. Just like GM says, don't be blind. Keep a lookout for disposable phones, and odd credit card purchases. But try to enjoy the man you fell in love with. If he has changed, give him the freedom to prove he wants to be in this relationship. HOWEVER -- this man has cheated TWICE. He shouldn't get another free pass. He's had his two strikes.
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Old 10-21-2011, 09:46 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Your blog has some great info on it. You almost give me hope. And almost is huge for me. I hate cheaters.
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