Regaining confidence after infidelity - Talk About Marriage
Coping with Infidelity Relationship recovery from the destructiveness of infidelity.

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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 09:04 AM Thread Starter
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Regaining confidence after infidelity

I got an anonymous letter last year telling me my husband of then 2 years (been in relationship for 13 years) had been seeing someone else.

I have taken it really hard, I have lost a lot confidence and have been to couples counselling together and more recently I have been going alone to work on myself.

It has been like grieving a loss. We were childhood sweethearts and have only ever loved each other and I was naive to think nothing like this could ever affect us.

I still battle with insecurities regularly, I sometimes feel like people know and I feel paranoid. I have also discovered how very few people will be there for you in your hours of need. My counsellor said its obvious despite what happened that my husband adores me, but I can't help but feel like I'm waiting for the ground to fall from beneath me. When someone does an unloving act and goes outside of your relationship its very hard to feel loved.

I am wondering if anyone else has had the shock of an anonymous letter and not actually finding out about an affair yourself, how did you build your confidence back up and handle the emotional devastation. I have accepted what happened and in a way at least now I know so we can move forward and try and learn from our mistakes that contributed to why it happened, but at the moment I am really struggling with 'me'. I don't know how to build myself back up and start to feel happy from the inside out.

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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 09:40 AM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

OP,
Why is your self confidence affected? Your H broke your trust, betrayed his own honor, broke solemn vows indicating his word is worthless and it is you that has lost confidence in yourself? What confidence exactly? In your ability to attract/hold a man? Your H is a poor example of manhood and therefore not an accurate gauge for this measurement. You are not using sound data to compile your results. You are honorable, trustworthy and have integrity, how does that in any way indicate a reason for losing confidence?

What you have lost are your rose colored glasses that allowed you to believe that being honorable, loyal and having integrity prevents others from losing. or never having to begin with, theirs. It is your H that should be insecure in that it is only out of the generosity of your good nature that he and you are still together. He has the ability to attract other women but of what caliber? He only has a woman of your high character because of that very character and your propensity to try and empathize and understand. It is he that is on very thin ice, do not let him skate too much.

Peace and long life
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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 10:05 AM
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Cool Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

I agree that being an undue and unsuspecting victim of infidelity, collusion, gross deception, and cheating is a lot like living through the unexpected death of a spouse ~ it just hits you right in the center of the solar plexus just like an unforeseen sucker punch!

But having said that, don't ever let that even begin to compromise your self confidence! What happened to you was not, at all, your fault! Why blame yourself?

Like the death of a spouse, you will need an inordinate amount to adequately grieve that loss, and over the due course of time, find sustainable recovery to be able to reach out and find that special person who will come to truly love you for the very special, trusting person that you are!

"To love another person is to see the face of God!" - Jean Valjean from Les Miserables

My Story! http://talkaboutmarriage.com/going-t...andonment.html

Last edited by arbitrator; 04-03-2017 at 12:10 PM. Reason: Edification
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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 10:05 AM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

I received an anonymous letter the week before my husband and I married that said he was having an affair with someone from his past, that I shouldn’t marry him because he was a liar and that she was pregnant and people were starting to find out about them. My husband was at work that day. I called him crying, shaking uncontrollably, a complete mess. It was the day of my bachelorette party. I didn’t know what to do. He assured me he was not seeing anyone else, that it was crap. When he got home from work that day he hugged and held me, promised me it wasn’t true. We have a friend who is a police detective. He talked to him, asked him if he could have the letter fingerprinted. He said he would do it. That set my mind at ease. A week later it wasn’t done, we were getting married, but I believed him because he was having the letter fingerprinted. He surely wouldn’t go to those lengths if he was really cheating, right? After we got married, the letter still wasn’t fingerprinted. We asked our detective friend and he said it just wasn’t a priority right then (understandable). Luckily for my piece of mind, my sister in law is an alcohol and drug counselor for a state run facility. They have the capability to fingerprint as well and she was able to do it for us. UNFORTUNATELY, it came back with no matches. That was disappointing, but the fact that my husband went to such great lengths to get the fingerprints done convinced me that he was not having an affair.

I had 3 suspected people that I thought could have sent the letter. My ex husband, his ex girlfriend and a guy that was a friend of ours that had a bit of a crush on me (that last suspicion didn’t really pop up until much, much later).

Now please understand…my husband had already done other things to arouse my suspicion and hurt me. Talking to the ex girlfriend against my wishes, asking an old flame for pictures of her boobs, talking to girls on MySpace, excessive porn use, etc. But stupidly I just kept believing that this stuff would stop once we got married.

Our 9 year wedding anniversary is next month. This previous October we separated. The October before that we separated. He HAS cheated, at least over the last year and a half, with his ex girlfriend. I now wonder more than ever if that letter WAS true. I wonder if the girl he supposedly got pregnant lost the baby or if he has a child somewhere that I don’t know about. I look at pictures of his ex girlfriends kids and try to see if they look like him. My husband has red hair. His ex girlfriend is mixed black and white. Her ex husband is mixed black and white. Her kids APPEAR mixed black and white with no red hair traits, but I still STARE. Her son looks like his dad, but her daughter? She doesn’t look like either of them. I constantly question that letter.

My self esteem is in the toilet. I’m not a bad looking woman, but I analyze my looks constantly. My body. My personality. How I am in bed. My cooking. My cleaning. EVERY single thing about myself. It’s been a LONG 9 years after receiving that letter……

I'll get through this, one day at a time.
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 10:28 AM
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I understand your pain. My confidence has gone down the drain as well. I was pregnant when it happened. A week before my due date. 3 months post partum right now. I've lost almost all of the weight, but I analyze every part of my body. This chick was younger than me with no kids, so I'm sure she still had a great body.

I used to take pride in my ability to work, be a student, and take care of our children and home. Despite all that I did outside of the home, I did my best to still do all of his laundry, iron his clothes, keep our house immaculate. Tried to be adventurous in bed, but his mind was elsewhere so we didn't have a lot of sex. Now, I realize none of this matters. So I don't give a ****. He still cheated no matter how good of a mom and wife I tried to be. I don't do his laundry. I don't obsess over the house cleaning. In a way, this has kind of let me chill out about my "wife duties".
My main thing now is my body. It sucks. But I have started going to the gym almost everyday, eating healthy, and taking more time to myself. It has helped some. But when I have flashbacks, I get all depressed again. It's hard.

I know I am no help. But I will follow in hopes of some encouragement as well. Just wanted you to know it's normal and you are not alone.
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 12:20 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

Perhaps it's not completely a matter of lack of confidence on your part. Perhaps you arent sure you want to reconcile with someone who has done something so unloving and disrespectful, but you're afraid of the alternative since you've known nothing else?

"If you deliberately plan on being less than you are capable of being, then I warn you that you'll be unhappy for the rest of your life."

~ Abraham Maslow
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 12:36 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

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Originally Posted by NoChoice View Post
OP,
Why is your self confidence affected? Your H broke your trust, betrayed his own honor, broke solemn vows indicating his word is worthless and it is you that has lost confidence in yourself? What confidence exactly? In your ability to attract/hold a man? Your H is a poor example of manhood and therefore not an accurate gauge for this measurement. You are not using sound data to compile your results. You are honorable, trustworthy and have integrity, how does that in any way indicate a reason for losing confidence?

What you have lost are your rose colored glasses that allowed you to believe that being honorable, loyal and having integrity prevents others from losing. or never having to begin with, theirs. It is your H that should be insecure in that it is only out of the generosity of your good nature that he and you are still together. He has the ability to attract other women but of what caliber? He only has a woman of your high character because of that very character and your propensity to try and empathize and understand. It is he that is on very thin ice, do not let him skate too much.
No Choice is correct. Your confidence should not hinge on your H's fidelity. His choice to cheat is on him and is a reflection of his character and his values - not yours.

The analogy of death here has some merit.

Sit down and think about what you would do if your H were to get suddenly killed in a car wreck on his way home from work. What would you do?

There would be the initial shock and horror. There would be grief. There would be the work and labor of making all the arrangements and having the funeral etc. Then there would be the arduous task of working out all the mechanics of daily living and the financials and the day to day tasks of getting back to daily living under the new normal.

In time you would be living as a single woman, taking care of yourself and your family and taking care of business. You would start getting out and doing things with friends and family. You would shift your thought processes from 'We' to 'Me.'

And you would start taking care of yourself, dressing better, eating better, getting some exercise/hitting gym, indulging in hobbies and getting out with friends and family etc.

And in time you would start catching the eyes of various gentlemen and in time dating etc.

Somewhere in there whether it was weeks, months or even a year or so, you would realize that life was good and you felt content and happy and confident etc.

You may always feel some grief and sadness in what was lost, but you moved on a created a new life that was fulfilling and fun and joyful and content inspite of all of the ups and downs of living.

It's not like you went to a store and bought it, or that you got online and ordered it and it's not like you went to a shrink or a clergy and they bestowed it upon you.

It is that you engaged in daily living, took care of business and took care of yourself. THAT is where actual confidence comes from.

You don't get confidence from your spouse's fidelity. There for a spouse's infidelity cannot destroy it.

You get confidence from taking care of yourself and taking care of the business of your life and doing things that are beneficial to you.

There for the name of the game here with this situation is do the same thing here. Start taking care of yourself and start taking care of your business and doing things with your life that are beneficial to YOU. Start living life as if you were a single woman/single mother and start doing things for YOU.

As you start taking more and more responsibility for yourself and your own well being, your confidence will come.

If your husband actually is a decent man and supports that and works with you and works with you to create a beneficial and positive life for the two of you, then you may decide to keep him around inspite of his previous bad behavior.

BUT, if he continues to cheat or mistreats you in any way or hampers or detracts from you taking care of yourself, then you'll have the strength and confidence and resources to walk away and leave him behind.

Dealing with the death of a spouse and dealing with mistreatment by a spouse are one in the same.
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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 12:46 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

GAP
I say this to every betrayed spouse that I have encountered over the years; This was never about you. He is the one missing a part of his soul. He is the one seriously lacking in ethics. You are the innocent victim of infidelity. Do not beat yourself up, you did not cause this.

Pure and simple mistreatment at the hands of the one person who vowed never to betray you. Please do not turn your anger inward. It never was your fault.
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 01:27 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

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Originally Posted by GAP View Post
I got an anonymous letter last year telling me my husband of then 2 years (been in relationship for 13 years) had been seeing someone else.

I have taken it really hard, I have lost a lot confidence and have been to couples counselling together and more recently I have been going alone to work on myself.

It has been like grieving a loss. We were childhood sweethearts and have only ever loved each other and I was naive to think nothing like this could ever affect us.
You're grieving because you've lost something precious- the belief that you had a good marriage. There is nothing naive about believing in your marriage. Your husband has broken his vows and your trust. He has betrayed you. You have every right to grieve your marriage.

Good for you for getting into IC. Anyone in your position who cared about their marriage and believed in it would take this hard. You need time to grieve the marriage you had, and to decide what is best for you. I'd recommend taking time and space from your husband until you decide what you want to do, after working through it with your therapist. Your husband has done great damage to you and your marriage.
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 01:32 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

I get it, I had the same. It wasn't so much from finding out, it was more the "what did I do so wrong" part that got to me and killed my confidence. I have since been working on rebuilding myself and I do feel great again, but there are days where for whatever reason everything feeling likes it's crashing down again.

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post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 02:33 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

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I understand your pain. My confidence has gone down the drain as well. I was pregnant when it happened. A week before my due date. 3 months post partum right now. I've lost almost all of the weight, but I analyze every part of my body. This chick was younger than me with no kids, so I'm sure she still had a great body.

I used to take pride in my ability to work, be a student, and take care of our children and home. Despite all that I did outside of the home, I did my best to still do all of his laundry, iron his clothes, keep our house immaculate. Tried to be adventurous in bed, but his mind was elsewhere so we didn't have a lot of sex. Now, I realize none of this matters. So I don't give a ****. He still cheated no matter how good of a mom and wife I tried to be. I don't do his laundry. I don't obsess over the house cleaning. In a way, this has kind of let me chill out about my "wife duties".
My main thing now is my body. It sucks. But I have started going to the gym almost everyday, eating healthy, and taking more time to myself. It has helped some. But when I have flashbacks, I get all depressed again. It's hard.

I know I am no help. But I will follow in hopes of some encouragement as well. Just wanted you to know it's normal and you are not alone.
Have you stayed with him? I'm in my 3 week of finding out my husband cheated, and I was wondering if it's possible to move forward. X
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post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 03:06 PM
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Originally Posted by adegirl2016 View Post
I understand your pain. My confidence has gone down the drain as well. I was pregnant when it happened. A week before my due date. 3 months post partum right now. I've lost almost all of the weight, but I analyze every part of my body. This chick was younger than me with no kids, so I'm sure she still had a great body.

I used to take pride in my ability to work, be a student, and take care of our children and home. Despite all that I did outside of the home, I did my best to still do all of his laundry, iron his clothes, keep our house immaculate. Tried to be adventurous in bed, but his mind was elsewhere so we didn't have a lot of sex. Now, I realize none of this matters. So I don't give a ****. He still cheated no matter how good of a mom and wife I tried to be. I don't do his laundry. I don't obsess over the house cleaning. In a way, this has kind of let me chill out about my "wife duties".
My main thing now is my body. It sucks. But I have started going to the gym almost everyday, eating healthy, and taking more time to myself. It has helped some. But when I have flashbacks, I get all depressed again. It's hard.

I know I am no help. But I will follow in hopes of some encouragement as well. Just wanted you to know it's normal and you are not alone.
Have you stayed with him? I'm in my 3 week of finding out my husband cheated, and I was wondering if it's possible to move forward. X
It has been a few months. Dday was December 11th. I am 90 percent sure I will leave in June. Waiting for financial reasons. Seeing a therapist in the mean time. I honestly don't think I'll get past the pain unless I leave. The pain isn't as constant now that it's been a few months, but when it does come, it's bad. There are good days and bad days. Today has been a rough day.
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post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 04:56 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

I did IC after I kicked him out.

The very first thing you need to do is try to figure out if you even want to try to R with him. How is he acting? What is he doing for you? Has he been STD tested? Have you? Is he groveling?

I will try to relay something my counselor asked me. He told me to imagine I was climbing a cliff. It's a very difficult cliff, it's very tall and very exhausting and difficult. I've been climbing it for a long time, but I keep going because I know that at the top I can rest. I know that at the top there's a nice big huge comfy couch that I can sink into and rest and all my cares will float away when I do. But first I have to conquer the cliff.

He said to close my eyes and imagine climbing that cliff, and to envision that couch at the top. He took me through some breathing stuff and whatnot, then after a couple of minutes he told me to finish my climb and tell him what I saw at the top - whether anyone else was in that couch or if it was empty. When hubby was in it, I knew that I wanted to try R.

People don't get a free pass to cheat just because their marriage sucks.

Our R
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post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 05:00 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

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I did IC after I kicked him out.

The very first thing you need to do is try to figure out if you even want to try to R with him. How is he acting? What is he doing for you? Has he been STD tested? Have you? Is he groveling?

I will try to relay something my counselor asked me. He told me to imagine I was climbing a cliff. It's a very difficult cliff, it's very tall and very exhausting and difficult. I've been climbing it for a long time, but I keep going because I know that at the top I can rest. I know that at the top there's a nice big huge comfy couch that I can sink into and rest and all my cares will float away when I do. But first I have to conquer the cliff.

He said to close my eyes and imagine climbing that cliff, and to envision that couch at the top. He took me through some breathing stuff and whatnot, then after a couple of minutes he told me to finish my climb and tell him what I saw at the top - whether anyone else was in that couch or if it was empty. When hubby was in it, I knew that I wanted to try R.
Thank you for sharing this!
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post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-03-2017, 06:26 PM
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Re: Regaining confidence after infidelity

Hi. @GAP. Sorry you are here, but pleased you found us.

It does mess with your confidence.

And it takes a while to get it back.

But you'll do it.

http://mygeneralblog1.blogspot.co.uk
http://mygeneralblog1.blogspot.co.uk...-cheaters.html (Be afraid UK cheaters! CheaterVille has come to the UK!
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