How do they live with it. - Talk About Marriage
Coping with Infidelity Relationship recovery from the destructiveness of infidelity.

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post #1 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 09:24 AM Thread Starter
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How do they live with it.

So there is a post, let's assume it's real, on SI by a man whose SAH wife went to work after 15 years. In a short time "fell in love" with a guy from her job and blew up her life. She has apologized but told him they did everything, and that she was "in love" with him. Now assuming the theories are right and this is all just limerence and aftermath of being a SAH mom so long and having someone new take interest in her, once that dies down how can she live with herself.

It is very obvious from any outsider that this was the most horrible of choices. Doesn't sound like he was a bad husband it just sounds like she was just another one of these entitled people who was bored. Now what are the chances the guy from work is going to want be a stepfather to 3 kids? So she blew up everyone who was loyal to her in her life and her children for about 3 months of fun and sex.

Again how do you recover from blowing up your kids and the man you loved for 15 years. The man who gave you children and supported you while you could stay at home and raise them. Presumably, if you are human (though maybe she doesn't have this kind of decency) she will eventually realize the wickedness of her actions. Though I guess a whole lot of them never do. I mean just on a human level to treat another human being like that.

A WW who I wish would come back on here posted about dealing with the aftermath on another thread yesterday. But this person had PPD and got hooked on Xanax, and they didn't even have sex, let alone fall in love. I don't think what she did is in the same universe. Yet the pain she posted, about her life and her as a person being before the affair and now after the affair was visceral. What if this woman in this SI post wakes up to what she did to her husband and family.

This reminds me of the post on here where the woman has to spend 6 years in prison for drunk driving. To me, if this woman ever realizes the depravity of what she did, it will be worse than that, it will be a lifetime. It's like drunk driving and then waking up with no legs. But then again maybe to do something like that means you will never understand the depths of pain you caused. You very rarely see posts where people who do horrible things like this say how they are racked with guilt. But you see tons of post with the same entitlement that lead to this woman doing this. This is why I have very little faith in R.

How do you repentant WS live with it? I think it would end up consuming me.

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post #2 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 10:40 AM
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Re: How do they live with it.

i believe most cheating is done for reasons of validation. validation is like a very addictive drug.
it's almost impossible to deny oneself. most cheaters (not all) suffer from extreme feelings of inadequacy for whatever reasons.
they crave validation and when it presents itself they cannot resist. it's like a breath of fresh air after being in an underground
cave when your suffocating.

that's why many cheaters 'dumb down'. the source of the validation is not as important as the validation itself.

they don't think about the aftermath. think about it for a moment. if you're in that proverbial cave, suffocating, all you want is fresh air.
you don't think about what might be up there on the ground level surface. deal with that when it comes.
all you want is that escape from where you are and you'll do anything to get there.

then when things blow up, you will make the excuses to yourself. my husband(wife) abused me. never brought me flowers. told me i was ugly.
denied me sex. the excuses are a myriad as the stars in the sky. the bottom line? I can't be a bad person. that's too painful.
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post #3 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 10:45 AM
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Re: How do they live with it.

Besides finding grace and peace in my forgiveness of her, my wife found comfort in the book of Paul.

Just as you should be ashamed for constantly trying to separate the wheat from the chaff {how will you ever live with yourself}, we could all stand to learn a thing or two from the life of Paul. I'm not saying we can't discern and judge bad behavior, just that we can't/don't stand in full complete judgement of yet living people. Throughout the bible Jesus chooses the shameful, most lowly and the foolish, the very same people we too often reject or try to write off as worthless here.

From Got Answers dot Org -
"What can we learn from the life of Paul" .


Quote:
......

So, what can we learn from the life of the Apostle Paul? First, we learn that God can save anyone. The remarkable story of Paul repeats itself every day as sinful, broken people all over the world are transformed by God’s saving grace in Jesus Christ. Some of these people have done despicable things to other human beings, while some just try to live a moral life thinking that God will smile upon them on the day of judgment. When we read the story of Paul and know what he had done, it is difficult for us to believe that God would allow into heaven religious extremists who murder innocent women and children. Today, we might see people on death row as unworthy of redemption because their crimes against humanity are just too great. Yet we live our lives in a sinful manner, expecting that God will be impressed by the fact that we haven’t killed anyone. The story of Paul is a story that can be told today—he isn’t worthy in our eyes of a second chance, yet to God he is worthy. The truth is that every person matters to God, from the “good, decent,” average person to the “wicked, evil” degenerate. Only God can save a soul from hell.

You'd also notice when studying Paul that he did NOT escape suffering during his life in the flesh. He didn't escape the consequences of his sins, but boy did he ever build a legacy for himself and the kingdom of God after he repented. Likewise, I don't think it's always easy or even possible for repentant former wayward spouse to forget what they did, especially every time they witness a blessing in their life thereafter {a life they almost threw away for nothing}; but, if they use their remaining time wisely sharing their testimony and the Word, the gift of repentance, God's love and bringing blessings to others while building a legacy for themselves and their families, it sure helps.

It's a good lesson for all of us sinners.

I wish I could say everything in one word. I hate all the things that can happen between the beginning of a sentence and the end. ~ Leonard Cohen

Last edited by Quality; 02-15-2017 at 11:06 AM.
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post #4 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 10:52 AM
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Re: How do they live with it.

Wow, that story could equally be mine.

It's painful to watch as a bystander, let alone as her STBXH, but these things do happen and I guess only time will tell if it was all worth it for the WW.

What these WW don't see as they are immersed in the fog and limerence, is the far and wide impact their actions have on the rest of the world. I estimate at least 100 friends and family have been involved, to one degree or another, in the deterioration of our marriage. Then there are the equal amount on the POSOM side too. My parents are two of the most badly hit: I've only ever seen my Dad cry 3 times in his life, 1 of those time was last week when he broke down when I was telling him how this has affected me. My Mum is broken.

But the WW don't care. It's selfish. It's self-fulfilling. It's borderline cruelty. But they don't care. It's entitlement. It's all about 'me, me, me'.

Watch me someday, Yeah somehow I will make it somewhere
I'm going higher, I'll rise so much higher and I'll hold my head higher
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post #5 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 11:36 AM
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Re: How do they live with it.

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Originally Posted by jorgegene View Post
the bottom line? I can't be a bad person. that's too painful.
I think this is it right here. If you admit that's what you are, it's just too damaging for most people. You can see that wall of pain coming from a mile away, so I think most people just rationalize themselves into pretzels trying to avoid facing it -- to avoid shattering their own self image that badly. As a result, they can never work up to admitting it to themselves, much less to others. They'd probably die if they had to.

It's one of the reasons I'm willing to give my wife a chance right now. She's recently come to admit this, and I respect her for it. And yes, as a result she's been going through serious emotional turmoil lately.
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post #6 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 12:05 PM
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Re: How do they live with it.

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Originally Posted by jorgegene View Post
that's why many cheaters 'dumb down'. the source of the validation is not as important as the validation itself.
It took me a long time to figure this out. I'm successful in my profession, own my house free and clear, good salary, ect. One of my ex-fiancée's boyfriends (yes, plural ) was a balding fat loser. Talk about a big hit to the ego.
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post #7 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 12:05 PM
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Re: How do they live with it.

I love got questions dot org.


GotQuestions.org


Question: "What is the difference between iniquity, sin, and transgression?"

Answer: In Psalm 32:5, the psalmist says, “I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the LORD.’” In this one verse, “sin,” “iniquity,” and “transgression” are all mentioned. Basically, the three words communicate the same idea: evil and lawlessness, as defined by God (see 1 John 3:4). However, upon closer examination, each word also carries a slightly different meaning.

The word sin and its cognates are used 786 times in the New International Version of the Bible. Sin means “to miss the mark.” It can refer to doing something against God or against a person (Exodus 10:16), doing the opposite of what is right (Galatians 5:17), doing something that will have negative results (Proverbs 24:33–34), and failing to do something you know is right (James 4:17). In the Old Testament, God even instituted sacrifices for unintentional sins (Numbers 15:27). Sin is the general term for anything that “falls short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

Sin leads to a downward progression that, without the restoring power of the Holy Spirit, we all tend toward. The sin nature is present in every human being born since the Fall of Adam (Genesis 3:6–7; Romans 5:12). If left unchecked, continual sin leads to a “reprobate mind,” spoken of in Romans 1:24. Our sin nature causes us to gravitate naturally toward selfishness, envy, and pride, even when we are trying to do good. The apostle Paul alluded to his propensity to sin when he wrote, “For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.” (Romans 7:18).

The sin nature leads to trespassing. A trespasser is someone who crosses a line or climbs a fence that he should not cross or climb. A trespass may be intentional or unintentional. Trespass can also mean “to fall away after being close beside.” Peter trespassed when he denied Jesus (Luke 22:34, 56–62). We all “cross the line” in thought, word, or attitude many times a day and should be quick to forgive others who do the same (Matthew 6:15).

Transgression refers to presumptuous sin. It means “to choose to intentionally disobey; willful trespassing.” Samson intentionally broke his Nazirite vow by touching a dead lion (Numbers 6:1–5; Judges 14:8–9) and allowing his hair to be cut (Judges 16:17); in doing so he was committing a transgression. David was referring to this kind of sin when he wrote, “Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered” (Psalm 32:1). When we knowingly run a stop sign, tell a lie, or blatantly disregard an authority, we are transgressing.

Iniquity is more deeply rooted. Iniquity means “premeditated choice, continuing without repentance.” David’s sin with Bathsheba that led to the killing of her husband, Uriah, was iniquity (2 Samuel 11:3–4; 2 Samuel 12:9). Micah 2:1 says, “Woe to those who plan iniquity, to those who plot evil on their beds! At morning’s light they carry it out because it is in their power to do it.” In David’s psalm of repentance, he cries out to God, saying, “Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin” (Psalm 51:2).

God forgives iniquity, as He does any type of sin when we repent (Jeremiah 33:8; Hebrews 8:12). However, iniquity left unchecked leads to a state of willful sin with no fear of God. The build-up of unrepentant sin is sometimes pictured as a “cup of iniquity” being filled to the brim (Revelation 17:4; Genesis 15:16). This often applies to nations who have forsaken God completely. Continued iniquity leads to unnatural affections, which leads to a reprobate mind. Romans 1:28–32 outlines this digression in vivid detail. The sons of Eli are biblical examples of reprobates whom God judged for their iniquities (1 Samuel 3:13–14). Rather than repent, Eli’s sons continued in their abominations until repentance was no longer possible.

The biblical writers used different words to refer to sin in its many forms. However, regardless of how depraved a human heart may become, Jesus’ death on the cross was sufficient to cover all sin (John 1:29; Romans 5:18). Psalm 32:5, quoted at the beginning of this article, ends with these words: “And you forgave the guilt of my sin.” The only sin that God cannot forgive is the final rejection of the Holy Spirit’s drawing to repentance—the ultimate fruit of a reprobate mind (Matthew 12:32; Luke 12:10).

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I wish I could say everything in one word. I hate all the things that can happen between the beginning of a sentence and the end. ~ Leonard Cohen
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post #8 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 12:07 PM
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Re: How do they live with it.

I think you spend way too much time on SI

My husband asks me every once in a while if I think he's a better person today than he was in 2010. He works hard at improvement, constantly. Like we all should, really. He (and I) see what he did as something in the past that we both learned from. A HUGE something, yes, but not so huge it's insurmountable. He tried for a while to stop talking about or thinking about what he did - I suppose that's one way of 'living with it'. But of course, since he wanted R with me, that wasn't going to fly. He had to face it head on. He still attends his 12 step group so I know he does still think about it at least that often. He also comes home periodically from his group and asks me stuff about how I am doing.

I guess the short answer is that he lives with it by doing the opposite of rug sweeping it.
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post #9 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 12:28 PM
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Re: How do they live with it.

This post will be about haves.

Have you ever been inside a woman's purse? Have you seen all the stuff that they put in there, all neatly organized. Some in pockets, some in little satchels, some in little purses. All put in compartments.

Have you ever been inside a woman's closet? Have you seen all the stuff that they put in there, The clothes are in tiers. the shoes on racks at the bottom and in hanging cases. There are belts, bonnets, scarves, jewelery, all neatly put in compartments.

The same goes for her bathroom, hall closets and linen closets and office spaces. Does NOT apply to their cars or the cars trunk...messy, messy.

They say that men can compartmentalize things...yes, mental issues, mental challenges.

They do not hold a candle to women. Ever watch a women gather and pack up the stuff a baby needs for a short trip? Sheesh.

Look, the ability is there, ten fold to men.

Women who cheat are 'often' not quite like other women, they are more like men. They CAN compartmentalize their feelings. Remember, men and women differ mainly by hormonal balances. Some women are more masculine, more assertive, more horny, more selfish, less self-less [looking past physical differences]

Difference: When a women organizes her house she uses her brain. When a women cheats she uses her clumsy heart. The brain tags along because it needs the blood, needs the oxygen. It follows the heart around and puts stuff in their improper place. Just to survive.

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 #10 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 03:49 PM
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Re: How do they live with it.

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Originally Posted by sokillme View Post
.....It is very obvious from any outsider that this was the most horrible of choices. Doesn't sound like he was a bad husband it just sounds like she was just another one of these entitled people who was bored. Now what are the chances the guy from work is going to want be a stepfather to 3 kids? So she blew up everyone who was loyal to her in her life and her children for about 3 months of fun and sex.

Again how do you recover from blowing up your kids and the man you loved for 15 years. The man who gave you children and supported you while you could stay at home and raise them. Presumably, if you are human (though maybe she doesn't have this kind of decency) she will eventually realize the wickedness of her actions. Though I guess a whole lot of them never do. I mean just on a human level to treat another human being like that.

.......How do you repentant WS live with it? I think it would end up consuming me.
A few things. To the best of my knowledge my LD wife has never been unfaithful to me. Still having gone through a lot with her, I would like to make a few observations.

(1) Having children with my wife and having her stay at home to raise them is quite a blessing to me. I am so happy to have those children and now grandchildren in my life. To know that they were raised right and are now responsible adults gives me great joy. I actively participated in the raising of my children and would gladly do it all again.

(2) Nothing that my wife could do, would destroy my love for my children or make me regret having them become part of my life. You can't blow up your children with an affair. She may have destroyed their faith in her and her ethics, cast in doubt her ability to make a lifetime commitment of love. she might have even tried to say bad things about her husband to her children to justify her own failings. However, she couldn't blow up her children of the love that their father has for them.

(3) Most people do eventually recognize the wickedness of their own actions. Some even reach as state of grace where they apologize and ask for forgiveness. There are a set of steps in the grieving process. Acceptance comes last. Actually forgiveness of yourself comes last.

(4) (and what i really wanted to talk about) "......How do you repentant WS live with it?" First let's look at what the dictionary says.

Quote:
penitence, repentance, contrition, compunction, remorse mean regret for sin or wrongdoing. penitence implies sad and humble realization of and regret for one's misdeeds <absolution is dependent upon sincere penitence>. repentance adds the implication of a resolve to change <repentance accompanied by a complete change of character>. contrition stresses the sorrowful regret that constitutes true penitence <tearful expressions of contrition>. compunction implies a painful sting of conscience especially for contemplated wrongdoing <had no compunctions about taking back what is mine>. remorse suggests prolonged and insistent self-reproach and mental anguish for past wrongs and especially for those whose consequences cannot be remedied <thieves untroubled by feelings of remorse>.
So you have regret, realization of misdeeds, a resolution to change oneself, and possible mental anguish.

How do you live with such feelings. You recognize your faults, learn from them, change, and move forward.

From my own personal experience, which has no similarity to that of the WS in this story, I know how I dealt with my sins for which I repented. During this past year of Holy Mercy, I visited a pilgrimage church and entered through a Holy door. I attended Mass and prayed for the Pope and for Mercy in this world. I confessed my sins to a Priest. We discussed my sins, which were pretty minor, but he told me of his and God's forgiveness of me. We prayed together. After it was over, I felt so much better and freer of heart. If God can forgive you and you believe it in your heart and mind, then certainly you can forgive yourself.

Good luck.

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post #11 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 03:56 PM Thread Starter
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Re: How do they live with it.

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Originally Posted by Hope1964 View Post
I think you spend way too much time on SI
I agree.
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post #12 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-15-2017, 04:07 PM Thread Starter
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Re: How do they live with it.

I'm reading here a lot about the person thinking about what they did to themselves. What about looking at, living with the people you destroyed. Being the parent whose children's future you have forever changed. I get that you can except that you blew up your own life, but how does a parent look at the kids and live with themselves. I think you have to be in denial. I will never understand this. I don't understand my own father, who I call my best friend. He probably thinks it didn't affect me, but it changed my life. I totally believe I got a late start in life because I lost like 3 years of my life to the aftermath of his affair. I believe I would have been much more successful without losing those 3 years.

How do they sleep? Yet most of them do. They must not operate the same way. This is really the only explanation that makes sense to me.
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post #13 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 12:31 AM
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Re: How do they live with it.

I think cheaters are fundamentally wired differently than normal people. It's not just that they run different software. The actual processor and hard-drive are not the same as other people.

We have all heard the same old lists of reasons and "whys" for affairs. Lack of attention, unmet emotional needs, FOO, etc etc. But the inconvenient fact is there are thousands upon thousands of people who have those exact same issues and do not cheat.

So why to cheaters cheat? For the same reason they can sleep like babies while having their affair and after, when their spouses are reeling in pain and the family is damaged. They are selfish. They put their desires above all else. They are a self selecting group of individuals with less than average empathy. It's all about them and their feelings. It is this wiring that allows them to "compartmentalize." Which is to say, allows them to lie without guilt.

So to a normal person who is not wired that way it just does not compute. You wonder, "how can the live with themselves?" Well for them its not that difficult. For a non-cheater, putting their family and marriage as risk for some fun is just not a consideration. Any trying to understand a cheater with a non-cheater mind is a like a hummingbird try to understand a snake.
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post #14 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 12:34 AM Thread Starter
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Re: How do they live with it.

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I think cheaters are fundamentally wired differently than normal people. It's not just that they run different software. The actual processor and hard-drive are not the same as other people.

We have all heard the same old lists of reasons and "whys" for affairs. Lack of attention, unmet emotional needs, FOO, etc etc. But the inconvenient fact is there are thousands upon thousands of people who have those exact same issues and do not cheat.

So why to cheaters cheat? For the same reason they can sleep like babies while having their affair and after, when their spouses are reeling in pain and the family is damaged. They are selfish. They put their desires above all else. They are a self selecting group of individuals with less than average empathy. It's all about them and their feelings. It is this wiring that allows them to "compartmentalize." Which is to say, allows them to lie without guilt.

So to a normal person who is not wired that way it just does not compute. You wonder, "how can the live with themselves?" Well for them its not that difficult. For a non-cheater, putting their family and marriage as risk for some fun is just not a consideration. Any trying to understand a cheater with a non-cheater mind is a like a hummingbird try to understand a snake.
It's like I am reading my own post.
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post #15 of 56 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 08:39 AM
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Re: How do they live with it.

Not sure either "side" is normal. I think both groups are normal. I think both instincts - selfish and selfless - evolved to address survival pressures. If you are selfish and take more than your fair share of the meat from the mammoth the tribe killed, you are stronger and healthier and have more energy. That is a plus for survival. You are more likely to survive a famine. On the other hand, some survival situations require help from other people. If you have been too selfish for too long, maybe the rest of your tribe refuses to come to your aid when you need help. So there is a balance between selfishness helping and hurting your chances of survival. So humans ended up with a range of instincts for selfishness and selflessness. Both are "normal" in the sense that both occur frequently.

When you can see it coming, duck!
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