I have been on a nineteen year (15 married) journey with an amazing woman. Your post touched me in a number of ways and I wanted to share a couple of things that I have learned.
I know it will be different. I guess it needs to be.
I love him but I dont know if I will ever love him as much.
I think you will be capable, if you choose, of loving him more.
I respect him but I dont know if I will ever respect him as much as I did before all of this.
If he takes takes the opportunity to grow from this crisis, then he could come out of this situation a person truly deserving of your respect.
I need him but not as much as I did before. I dont know if this is how it will be or if this is just how it is for now. Its sad.
I believe you will find great joy in embracing your strength, courage and ability to stand on your own. You just demonstrated great courage in the face of tremendous difficulty.
I don't need my wife, but I love her profoundly. She would say the same thing.
"Need" is a smothering state that stands in the way of real intimacy.
I now know that I can never fully and blindly trust him.
You risked by loving your husband and he betrayed you. You survived. I know you would never want to experience that betrayal again, but you now know you can handle it.
This risk is the price of true intimacy.
I think he knows in his head what he has done and he has his own pain from that but I dont think a WS can ever fully digest the severity of the injury they have inflicted.
I understand this comment. I have experienced a number of profound losses. Each of them has caused an awakening of some dormant part of myself for which I am thankful.
I have learned alot of things from this so far. But 2 things stand out. The first is, I gave too much. I gave more than I could afford to lose and that wont be repeated. The second is, I love him way more than even I knew. I hope he can feel that.
When you say you gave too much, I don't understand. You survived the loss - so maybe you could in fact afford to lose it.
I would encourage you to write down (for yourself) all the things you love about your husband. When you are done, look at the list and check off the items that describe you. Make another list of the things you think you lack and then work on yourself to make those characteristics a part of you too. True intimacy starts by being intimate with oneself.