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Coping with Infidelity Relationship recovery from the destructiveness of infidelity.

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post #31 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 06:15 AM
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Re: Big fight

@katies, have you asked him (NOT when either of you are angry, upset or tired) what he gets out of having her as his friend on FB? I am, by no means, agreeing that it is OK that he does. Personally, I think it's a cr*p idea. It's just that I'd guess it has become an issue for him. That by keeping her there, he's showing you that you can't tell him what to do.

So don't follow up his likely response of "Nothing really" with "Then why do it when you know it hurts me?". Just say "OK" in an accepting and neutral tone. And carry on doing your thing. I repeat, do not ask him why he does it when he knows it hurts you. Just leave it. Maybe he has a reason (sceptical look), maybe even a good reason (even more sceptical look). The point is to make him think about why he's doing it. I have (not that long ago - sigh) realised after starting a fight with my husband for no particularly good reason, that it was actually only because I wanted his FULL attention on ME. Seriously - how old am I?

It strikes me that you are both stuck in a never-ending loop of hurt. One of you hurt the other, then got hurt back, so did more hurting. And so on.

Do you believe that he is committed to your marriage? Do you genuinely believe that he isn't having an affair, or wanting to? Do you believe that he loves you?

If YES:
I'd suggest that maybe you're not angry about her, you're angry about him appearing not to care that he hurt you with his ill-chosen actions. But I'd challenge you by asking how often you tell him that you appreciate those 1000 things that he does do right? And that isn't "I appreciate x, BUT why haven't you also done y?". Rather it's "Thank you, I appreciate x, it makes me feel loved/chosen/special/cherished/looked after/like we're really good for each other." End of conversation. Carry on doing your thing.

You said that you'd tried MC - how many different therapists have you tried? Sometimes a certain approach clicks, and sometimes it does not. At all. I've had a therapist who annoyed me hugely with her sickly sweetness ... which, now that I think about it, was probably very effective in getting me "healed". I've had another where I've had a huge breakthrough in understanding myself in one session. He was a man of very few words. Which weren't mine that he was just playing back to me.

If NO:
Then this a much harder piece of advice to give. The reality is that you've hurt each other badly. Getting love to grow in a hostile environment is really hard. Unless you're both committed to having something more than what you've got now, you're never going to move forward together. If he isn't willing to be part of this with you, then you need to decide what you need and want.
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We keep telling ourselves that these people who keep hurting us really love us, and have so many good qualities. Reality is always a harder story to tell ourselves, so we sometimes opt for the easier story.



I have learned now that while those who speak about one's miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more. ― C.S. Lewis

FINE PRINT: My post is simply my own opinion (unless indicated otherwise). Which I believe I am entitled to express, as best as I can.
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post #32 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 07:54 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Big fight

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Originally Posted by Mizzbak View Post
@katies, have you asked him (NOT when either of you are angry, upset or tired) what he gets out of having her as his friend on FB? I am, by no means, agreeing that it is OK that he does. Personally, I think it's a cr*p idea. It's just that I'd guess it has become an issue for him. That by keeping her there, he's showing you that you can't tell him what to do.

So don't follow up his likely response of "Nothing really" with "Then why do it when you know it hurts me?". Just say "OK" in an accepting and neutral tone. And carry on doing your thing. I repeat, do not ask him why he does it when he knows it hurts you. Just leave it. Maybe he has a reason (sceptical look), maybe even a good reason (even more sceptical look). The point is to make him think about why he's doing it. I have (not that long ago - sigh) realised after starting a fight with my husband for no particularly good reason, that it was actually only because I wanted his FULL attention on ME. Seriously - how old am I?

It strikes me that you are both stuck in a never-ending loop of hurt. One of you hurt the other, then got hurt back, so did more hurting. And so on.

Do you believe that he is committed to your marriage? Do you genuinely believe that he isn't having an affair, or wanting to? Do you believe that he loves you?

If YES:
I'd suggest that maybe you're not angry about her, you're angry about him appearing not to care that he hurt you with his ill-chosen actions. But I'd challenge you by asking how often you tell him that you appreciate those 1000 things that he does do right? And that isn't "I appreciate x, BUT why haven't you also done y?". Rather it's "Thank you, I appreciate x, it makes me feel loved/chosen/special/cherished/looked after/like we're really good for each other." End of conversation. Carry on doing your thing.

You said that you'd tried MC - how many different therapists have you tried? Sometimes a certain approach clicks, and sometimes it does not. At all. I've had a therapist who annoyed me hugely with her sickly sweetness ... which, now that I think about it, was probably very effective in getting me "healed". I've had another where I've had a huge breakthrough in understanding myself in one session. He was a man of very few words. Which weren't mine that he was just playing back to me.

If NO:
Then this a much harder piece of advice to give. The reality is that you've hurt each other badly. Getting love to grow in a hostile environment is really hard. Unless you're both committed to having something more than what you've got now, you're never going to move forward together. If he isn't willing to be part of this with you, then you need to decide what you need and want.
I asked him why and he said he was friends with her husband (who's not on FB) and they all work out together so didn't think anything of it. But then why steal sideways glances at her when we're at the game when he's in a group with me? He must be interested. (Am I wrong about this?) It makes me feel like I'M NOT ENOUGH. When I know that I am.
I believe he is committed to me. That he loves me. And that he's not having an affair.
I believe he sucks at empathy and just wants us to get beyond this and be normal. My IC friend said that we now see things through the lens of infidelity.
Believe me, I tell him EVERY DAY how much I appreciate what he does. He's really good helping around the house and I tell him that. But if I mention ONE THING that hurts, he just cannot deal.
I am interested in having something more than we have now, although what we have now is good, as long as I keep my mouth shut.
We've tried two MC. He would very grudgingly go back if I asked. He feels we have spent time enough on all this and he's tired of talking about it.

So, it really isn't that he's still friends with this gal. It's the lack of empathy (what you are referring to) that he shows when I bring things up that is crushing me. I have considered divorce this week.
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post #33 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 08:09 AM
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Re: Big fight

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It makes me feel like I'M NOT ENOUGH. When I know that I am.
You sure about that?
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post #34 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-08-2017, 04:41 PM
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Re: Big fight

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So, it really isn't that he's still friends with this gal. It's the lack of empathy (what you are referring to) that he shows when I bring things up that is crushing me. I have considered divorce this week.
I don't blame you, not because he recently friended a random woman at the gym, but your entire story sounds like a lot of disrespect ...and maybe it's just simply not working. I also don't think I'd want to be married for a long time to someone who couldn't deal with his age or something, which sounds like what some people go through as their marriages go on. It sounds like your husband thinks friending someone as young as one of his kids will make him cool or feel younger, and it's all an illusion, sadly. Instead of embracing his reality (you) and being content with you, he needs other women to feed his ego. I don't think he'll cheat with her, I think he just likes attention from a much younger woman.

I hope that things get better for you, and that you don't sweep your feelings away just to keep peace.

Every now and then, you fall in love with the most unexpected person at the most unexpected time. - unknown

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post #35 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-09-2017, 07:46 PM
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Re: Big fight

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I think his two affairs were reactionary to my affair.
Maybe he's passive aggressively still getting his digs in/revenge , after all it appears you started the affair trend in your relationship.
Not healthy for either one of you.
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post #36 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-09-2017, 07:56 PM
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Re: Big fight

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Maybe he's passive aggressively still getting his digs in/revenge , after all it appears you started the affair trend in your relationship.
Not healthy for either one of you.
I also wonder this... as @Mizzbak said, "both stuck in a never-ending loop of hurt".
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post #37 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-10-2017, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Big fight

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Maybe he's passive aggressively still getting his digs in/revenge , after all it appears you started the affair trend in your relationship.
Not healthy for either one of you.
It needs to stop. And if it doesn't stop I need to leave. I think I've been "punished" enough.
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post #38 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 01:08 AM
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Re: Big fight

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It needs to stop. And if it doesn't stop I need to leave. I think I've been "punished" enough.
I would agree on all three... can he do his part?

And if he can't, the boundaries you enforce you need to adhere to or else it's wasted motion.

Think environment... he is used to a middle-school teacher reaction, you know this dance so perhaps a change the beat is something to consider.

Take a different approach, shake it up in a mindful way that makes him take a step back and think...
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post #39 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 06:57 AM
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Re: Big fight

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I agree his reaction is like WTF? He HATES that I look at social media - once I saw him at a community lunch sitting next to a gal who later came up and hugged him while we were together and I was livid. He said she's just a jovial happy person. He accused me of looking at his LinkedIn page. I haven't looked at it in 2 years. But WHO CARES. He is a BS too! I would NOT CARE if he looked at my stuff. He doesnt' think it's healthy for married couples to do that. Well guess what, we're not the typical married couple.
He said if you don't trust me lets just end it. And then back pedaled. He just doesn't know how to NOT TAKE OFFENSE to anything I say. He said what's this about. I said EMPATHY!!!

Personally I don't think any of the social media out there is healthy for any couple, especially if there has been an issue of trust in the marriage. It would caused more fights between couples than any benefits you get from using it. Maybe you both should shut down all these sites so there is less things to argue about.

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post #40 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 08:10 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Big fight

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I would agree on all three... can he do his part?

And if he can't, the boundaries you enforce you need to adhere to or else it's wasted motion.

Think environment... he is used to a middle-school teacher reaction, you know this dance so perhaps a change the beat is something to consider.

Take a different approach, shake it up in a mindful way that makes him take a step back and think...
well I thought I had a pretty mature approach. Right now I'm not doing anything. I have an appt with IC in a couple weeks.
We've been having a good couple of days.
What I could say is that there have been a couple guys he didn't like/trust that tried to friend me on FB. I deleted their request right away.
There are two things here - the friendship thing and the fight we had where he threw everything I did back at me. That is a big problem with us.

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post #41 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 09:22 AM
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Re: Big fight

Being with others like that is a big deal... you either have to fully reconcile and forgive or it will irrevocably erode and one of you will leave, that is assured.

Can the both of you let the past really become the past?

Many can't after the transgression of an affair. I think those that do come to an understanding much deeper than the hurt created. What you need is a pact... a peace treaty if you will, make it written is recommended, that any future disagreement will not bring up the agreed areas in anger or an argument. When an argument seems to be forming that appears to be spiraling downward in trended negative feelings in it's tit-for-tat model, place the agreement on the table and work on keeping things fair, clear, and calm as you address your hurts and fears.

Keep the list visible and add to it initializing each new line you add to the treaty... before long you will see that the rehashing of old jabs are diminished and you now have room for the growth and good communication. If minor violations come, and they will, be humble if you cause them and patient/understanding if he does when called out... you are both human.

This isn't a weapon, it's a tool, and it protects you both.

If it doesn't work for you, wonderful... you have to use the tools that are best for you. The whole idea is that when you disagree, you can do it with fairness and without fear. When I argue with my wife, and we do have our share of disagreements... it's not that we disagree, it's how we disagree and quality counts.

Again, it's how you also react... what happens if you simply watch the things that are throw at you come and are caught by you? You owned them, correct? Perhaps it's now time to own the insecurities you both may have.

If this cycle doesn't stop, it will stop you...
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post #42 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Big fight

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Being with others like that is a big deal... you either have to fully reconcile and forgive or it will irrevocably erode and one of you will leave, that is assured.

Can the both of you let the past really become the past?

Many can't after the transgression of an affair. I think those that do come to an understanding much deeper than the hurt created. What you need is a pact... a peace treaty if you will, make it written is recommended, that any future disagreement will not bring up the agreed areas in anger or an argument. When an argument seems to be forming that appears to be spiraling downward in trended negative feelings in it's tit-for-tat model, place the agreement on the table and work on keeping things fair, clear, and calm as you address your hurts and fears.

Keep the list visible and add to it initializing each new line you add to the treaty... before long you will see that the rehashing of old jabs are diminished and you now have room for the growth and good communication. If minor violations come, and they will, be humble if you cause them and patient/understanding if he does when called out... you are both human.

This isn't a weapon, it's a tool, and it protects you both.

If it doesn't work for you, wonderful... you have to use the tools that are best for you. The whole idea is that when you disagree, you can do it with fairness and without fear. When I argue with my wife, and we do have our share of disagreements... it's not that we disagree, it's how we disagree and quality counts.

Again, it's how you also react... what happens if you simply watch the things that are throw at you come and are caught by you? You owned them, correct? Perhaps it's now time to own the insecurities you both may have.

If this cycle doesn't stop, it will stop you...
I really like the first part of this and I think we could do it.
Own the insecurities? You mean, never mention again when we feel insecure? Arent' I suppose to be able to talk about anything?
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post #43 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 11:51 AM
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Re: Big fight

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I don't think forgiveness helps with triggers. We have forgiven each other. I have to forgive myself for staying, apparently. Not in the cards to forgive any AP.
Kate, You wrote this on 8/6/2015

Your WH thinks along the same lines.

I do not think it is in the cards FOR HIM to forgive your affair.

He loves you. You are a lovely women.

But he does not believe your version of what happened in that hotel room. He does not believe you. Behind the scenes, he shows this disdain and acts accordingly.

For you, it is death by subtle blows. He seems very passive. He has no empathy? No, he has some. HE JUST HAS NO EMPATHY FOR YOU. His love for you and his hurt from you collide, collude and you get this women in your face....forever?

He still loves you, but he is still punishing you. He is conflicted. Your constant complaining about him and his affairs just fuel the passive glowing ember that is his relationship with this women.

I get it. You love him. You are remorseful.....he is not. He may say he is. But he is still hurt.

Like a leaf, he cannot/will not stop the local breeze from sending him astray. If he were a stronger man he would ask for a divorce. His "if" is weak.

He is coasting in life. And so are you. Get off the skateboard.

He will never get off his skankboard, will he?

This....This is the nub of the stick that pokes me in the eye when the light of day energizes my optic nerve....SunCMars.... The Allegory of the Cave--> On this, I did a '180' and stepped out.

The Lion in Winter. Invictus..By Will, Shall... Saved from harm by my friends.
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post #44 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-11-2017, 06:19 PM
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Re: Big fight

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I really like the first part of this and I think we could do it.
Own the insecurities? You mean, never mention again when we feel insecure? Arent' I suppose to be able to talk about anything?

No, I mean do the work to remove them from yourself.

We all have insecurities, it's how we allow them to surface is what matters.
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post #45 of 61 (permalink) Old 02-12-2017, 11:26 AM Thread Starter
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I don't think there is anything wrong with allowing insecurities to surface. Aren't we supposed to be vulnerable?
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