Time heals… or does it?

time

I always say that pain and depression due to infidelity cannot be swept under the rug.  It must be dealt with or it will fester and grow like a cancer.  Now we have a new friend here whose husband had an affair 28 years ago.  It was never dealt with and now, after suffering through painful triggers, she is traumatized all over again.  I have copied her comments here, along with Teresa’s reply to her.  It’s kind of long, but it will give you the idea of what’s going on with her.

She’s asking for our advice on how to deal with her situation.  What do you think?

 

To DJ and all who have responded here.

How do you push away thoughts of your husbands, supposedly EA that happened 28 yrs. ago and have all come back full force? I’ve been dealing with it for a year now and they are getting worse as I’ve confronted him with the questions of his 3 yrs. A that I never got answers to. He feels that we should just move on, I should not be thinking about it, even though he has treated me not very nice the past 4 yrs., with the last one being the worse, due to my bringing up the past and he feels that I shouldn’t be. I want the truth of those 3 yrs. and I know that I don’t have it and I keep going over all the details in my head, trying to put the pieces together and they don’t add up. I am going to have him take another polygraph test as he failed the first two 25 yrs. ago and the examiner wasn’t the best one around. I will find the best this time and if he refuses to do it then I’m out of here. He swears they didn’t have sex, but yet he went off on two weekends with her in that 3 yr. period. We had never been with anyone else, got married at 18 and he says that would have been crossing the line for him. I say sleeping in bed with her was more than I could handle and I don’t believe him. I’m tired of living with not knowing the truth, him not telling me how deep his feelings were for her and his constant comment of not remembering things. We’ve been married 51 yrs. and this past yr. has been hell. I can’t get her or what he did by betraying me off my mind. I don’t know if I love him anymore and sometimes can’t even stand the sight of him. I loved him so much and never dreamed that he would ever cheat on me. I thought, like our friends, that we had a wonderful marriage, even though he drank too much at social events. That’s how it started with her also and she worked at his office. Anyway, point being, he says that I am obsessing, my 2 daughter’s say the same thing and I don’t agree, plus it’s none of their business, but he brought them into the picture. So, now I’m being accused of breaking up the family if we separate and that’s a good possibility. I just don’t want to do it before Christmas due to the 3 grandchildren coming home. But things are so bad at home and I still haven’t found the right counselor. Please, any advice would be so welcome.

maxine6

  • Teresa says:

    Maxine6…..you can’t push away the thoughts….plain and simple! My H had an EA that started back in Sept. 2010 and lasted until I found out on Jan. 1, 2011….and on top of that, while stationed overseas 25 yrs ago, he had an EA then too!

    I brushed that one aside, since EA’s had no name back then, and the OW was just a name to me, since it happened thousands of miles a way…..well, I GUESS you can say I brushed it aside, if  you don’t count the panic attacks and depression that I went through, 1 1/2 yrs after I found out! I ended up being put on meds for the panic attacks, having a lot of not so fun tests done, because I had such extreme “symptons” I was experiencing…and I ended up seeing a counselor for a few months…I don’t remember what we talked about, but I do know my H’s affair did come up…but instead of the counselor dealing with HIM and why he did this,  the focus was on me, and why I was depressed! Looking back now, I think to myself, “Well, DUH, your H had a EA, possibly a PA” no WONDER I was depressed!! My H swears it wasn’t a PA, but he WAS thousands of miles from home, no accountability….has admitted holding her hand and a chaste kiss on the cheek a couple of times….righhhtttt!!! Would you believe that? So anyway, I wrote all that because when his current EA came to light, not only did I have to deal with THAT, I had to go back 25 yrs and delve into THAT EA because it was all buried under the rug, I really had NO clear answers…I was a mess for quite awhile while trying to get answers out of him! My H couldn’t remember details, and I wanted details, baby!! Led to quite a few arguments, let me tell you!! It’s so sad that these husbands of ours think they can have their “fun” and then when they get caught, can just say “Im sorry”….and then walk away like nothing happened and get back on with life!! Do they REALLY have such little respect for us??

    • maxine6 says:

      Teresa, I feel for you, none of it’s fair and mine would not have come back 3 yrs. ago if he hadn’t started treating me differently all of a sudden. I know a lot of things contributed to it, stock market, daughter owing us $10,000 and not paying it back which really made him mad. Drinking 3 glass’s of wine every night and anger issues over everything, including my back going out and having issues when we did travel. He had no patience with anything and then wasn’t loving me but about every 3 months. I felt unloved, neglected, he was taking a shower to work out, so my mind went back to the 1st. Affair, now that I knew the symptoms. I copied phone numbers, etc. He wasn’t having one, but I sure didn’t feel any better when he was treating me so badly. Then it all came back to me and I questioned why did I stay married to him for another 25 yrs. only to have a husband like this. I so wished that I had divorced him after the A when I was only 40, not at the age I am now, which is 69, YUK! I don’t like my life, like you, it’s all come back and I feel the same way that you do, he’s not telling me the truth and I can’t let it go and I don’t care if it’s 25 yrs. ago. He’s fed up with the questions he never answered years ago and I’m angry that he won’t be honest and just tell me what happened those 3 yrs.

      I like you suffered from severe panic attacks and am having them really bad again. Back then, they had to put me in a research program to try and figure out how to stop them. I had never had them before, but the stress was more than I could bear. I also had a stage 3 Melanoma surgery 6 weeks after finding out about the affair and a total hysterectomy 18 months later, due to stress. Our daughter at 16 left home and moved in with her boyfriend due to the tension in our home, which I had just designed, custom-built and was only there for 2 months when I found out about the affair from the OW husband. Such a sad time after all the work I had done and it was our dream home, but it turned out to be a “haunted house of nightmares!”  The same daughter got married young, got pregnant, divorced in one year and never went to college like her siblings until she was in her late 30′s. She’s now 40 and has had a difficult life and it has a lot to do with what her Dad did, but yet, he never takes any responsibility for it.

      We moved, I designed another house and have been in it almost 20 yrs. and now the last 4 have been hell. Life shouldn’t be like this for either one of us. My counselor also should have focused more on him, but he wasn’t cooperating with her either. Those questions were never answered or pursued until he would give up and come up with some kind of reason. So now he’s mad that he’s having to deal with all this 25 yrs. later, to bad, he should have addressed it back then.

      Not sure how all this is going to end. I just know that it won’t get out of my head and I hate going on more medication to accomplish that. I take Klonopin and Wellbutrin now to help me, but it’s not working. I hope that you find some kind of peace, we both deserve it.

      maxine6

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56 thoughts on “Time heals… or does it?

  1. wallybear12 says:

    Her husband is in a no win situation, if he tells her what she suspects is the truth she is gone.
    If he tells her what maybe the truth she doesn’t believe him.
    So maybe either way she really is tired of the lies stress anxiety and basically him and wants out.
    Does all the crap go away when you leave the source of it?
    She deserves peace and to live how she wants,

    • Not Over It says:

      Hey Wallybear – thank you. I agree.

      This is all just speculation – Maxine – I do think you need to find a counselor to help you sort this out. It seems that you are getting yourself all tangled up on just what it is you expect from your husband. It’s easy to do that. My coach has made me think through and talk through it all, and sometimes I have re-evaluate, and sometimes I have to push my husband.

      Wallybear – hope your holiday season is going well…

      Love & prayers,
      DJ

      • wallybear12 says:

        It is all speculation, when she said she doesn’t know if she loves him any more and the last four years he hasn’t treated her well, maybe even longer, maybe she just wants some peace and happiness and if he did in fact have sex with her that would in her mind give her the reason she needs to leave him, all speculation.
        I personally know as much as I need to at this time and even that is hard to process and live with, I’m wondering is it something that as long as I’m with him I have to deal with?

      • Not Over It says:

        Me, too. People who have made it through the worst and worked through it all say it can be wonderful. I don’t know. For me, at this point, it does seem like something I will always deal with. I’m going through a moment of bitter resentment right now with my birthday coming up. I know I’m not going to let it ruin my day, but I do have to fight it all off.

        But neither of us is *that* far out from Dday…

  2. Not Over It says:

    Hi Maxine – wow. I guess your story really goes to show that you can’t just sweep it under the rug and expect it to just go away. I’m so sorry you are going through this.

    Like Teresa said, you can’t just push the thoughts of your husband’s affair away. My post on pushing dark thoughts was about a temporary way to keep the thoughts away so that you can have some respite and enjoy yourself a little. In your case, you need a counselor to help you make sense of your feelings and your marriage.

    Again, just speculation, but I wonder if your husband thinks you’re just blowing off steam and doesn’t really think anything bad will happen if he continues to stay silent. It’s worked for 28 years – maybe he thinks he just has to make you miserable enough to just drop it. Maybe??? I don’t know enough about your situation to say, but it sounds like something my husband would try.

    My husband also cheated on me early in our relationship, but I never really knew how far it had gone until this Dday. I never quite let it go and on Dday when I confronted him about his affair, I also asked him about that girl. In his shock he went ahead and answered that he had indeed fooled around with her. They had an actual relationship and he had thought about leaving me for her. I also feel that I should have left back then, but I didn’t push hard enough to find out the details. He said he had foolishly sat in the same chair as her one day when she was coming on to him and I caught them, but he said that was it. And I accepted it. Over the years we would fight over her when something triggered my memories of it, but he never admitted anything until this Dday. I felt like I had been made a fool of for our entire relationship.

    I wish I had something better to say to you, Maxine, but you can’t push the thoughts away permanently. You need to deal with them. If it were me, I’d probably make plans to leave unless he agreed to help me get past it with counseling. It is unfair to tell you to drop it just because it was a long time ago. Betrayal is betrayal no matter when it happened, and betrayal is not something you just get over with time. Time will only mend if the betrayal is dealt with and worked through. That’s what I think anyway, based on my experience with my husband’s cheating long ago.

    Another thing to remember, though, is that he may really not remember many details after so many years of probably trying not to think about her. I could not give you all the details of the boyfriend I had before my husband. The important stuff, sure, but not everything.

    Hope that helps some.

    Grace and peace to you,
    DJ

  3. Reading this is terrifying. I’m 37 years old and found out a year ago that my husband had a 6 year affair with one woman and sexual relations with an additional 8 women when he would travel for work. We too built a beautiful home 2 years ago, he told me in our bedroom, now this house that I lived is filled with bad memories.

    My husband lied to me for 4 months all while I was helping my mother care for my dying father. He finally wrote out a list of every bad thing he’d done after a weekend at a marriage seminar. It’s been almost 9 months since his last lie and I’ve not discovered any more information, not for a lack of looking, but because I truly believe he purged himself. Still everyday feels like he just told me, the pain does not go away, the nightmares do not go away, the fear stays with me, it’s like I’m cloaked in fear.

    I’m likely near to the middle of my life, I don’t want to live the second half of my life in fear and anxiety. Does it ever get better is there any hope at all? I struggle with thoughts of leaving my husband everyday. It’s like torture.

    • Not Over It says:

      Hi BHR – After all he put you through, it’s no wonder you are doubting whether or not you can stay. I wavered for a long, long time. Your Dday was a year ago, but his last disclosure came only 9 months ago. You are still traumatized. It will get better. Probably not soon, but it will. Just be sure to deal with it. Don’t sweep it under the rug and don’t allow things to be left unspoken. Then you won’t have regrets and wonderings in years to come.

      My husband is not cooperative and so I struggle with many things left unspoken, and I still waver sometimes. Last night I had a nightmare, and amazingly he asked me about it today. I told him and he shut down. I know it’s guilt. He can’t talk to me. He can barely look at me. He’s outside right now working in the garden, trying to pull himself together. It’s not a good situation, but he will not open up. He finds it too painful. We are going to go back to counseling in January. Hopefully that will help. He talks to no one about it and he doesn’t like to write, so he doesn’t blog. He has isolated himself. Maybe the counselor can get through to him.

      You will get through this, BHR. You’re taking many good steps.

      Love & prayers,
      DJ

      • DJ, Thank you so much for the kind words. I’m so sorry to read of your ongoing troubles with your husband. I hope that therapy helps, I know if we did not have therapy we would not have been able to get through this. My husband is also dealing with addiction and goes to 4-5 NA meetings a week, it’s basically a big group therapy session, we also attend church every week together and my husband joined a mens small group led by the pastor of our church. Our life today is drastically different than it was a year ago when he told me about his affair. That’s not to say we don’t have bad days or bad weeks, we just came off a bad week where I was questioning if I could carry on with the marriage or not, sometimes it all just seems to painful and not worth it.

        Would your husband consider going to church? Will he read? There are so many good affair recovery books out there. My husband and I journal together as well, we hand write in a journal, we take turns, one week it’s his turn and the next it’s mine. We write about how we feel, what’s going on or if there is something we need to say to one another, we end every entry with a Rumi quote that’s applicable to what our current state of being is. It’s been nice for us to go back and read entries from when things were really bad and to see how far we’ve come, it gives us hope for the future.

        I hope you have a good week.

        Love, C

      • Not Over It says:

        At the beginning, he read excerpts of books that I picked out for him. He is no longer willing to read. When he was angry a couple of weeks ago, he said that all my books were a bunch of crap.

        He doesn’t want anyone to know of his “shameful past” so he will not open up to anyone, and he is of a different faith so he will not attend church with me. He does go to his church every week, and he says his faith is what convicted him of his sin before I even found out. He doesn’t share there either, but he says the sermons are very good.

        Further counseling is my last hope.

        It’s not like we are miserable together. He tries hard to make it up to me through acts of service. He cooks, he cleans – he never sits and does nothing at home. He buys me gifts and takes me out to eat. At our fitness center he sets up for me and makes sure I have everything I need for every class.

        But he has a terrible temper and deflects talking about his affair through anger. He won’t talk about it and he won’t study himself and figure out what led him to deny his faith and his family for another woman. He says he has it all figured out. I wonder…

        But I am ok. I’ve been growing stronger and I am alright. I am not allowing him or anyone else to take my Christmas season away from me anymore.

        Love & prayers,
        DJ

  4. cathmae says:

    I, too, was married for 30 years and issues from over 25 years ago did, in part, lead to the end of my marriage earlier this year.
    My view is that when my husband and I were very young, we both had friends of the opposite sex and we both felt some attraction to a few of those people, but were committed to each other and did not cross any lines. His friend Tricia was a very attractive, newly divorced woman who was about 15 years older than him. She was also his boss. He was flattered by her attention, and to his credit, he talked to me about her and how he really wanted to be friends with her but the whole thing felt sexually charged. The first time I met her, he introduced her jokingly, as “The Other Woman” and we all laughed, but it was humiliating for me. I suggested he invite Tricia and her daughters to dinner so we could, together, set a different tone for their friendship. That turned out to be the right thing to do… she stopped pursuing him sexually, and over time we occasionally saw her as a couple, but mostly they continued a 1:1 friendship, which I was a little jealous of because he sat and listened to her and never did that for me.
    My friend was Dan and I met at work. We only worked together for a few months, then got together for dinner about once every 3 – 4 months. I was attracted to him, but the time we spent together was not romantic. There was no hand holding, gazing into each others’ eyes, or talk about our attraction. We did not talk on the phone. He knew my husband and I were planning a family. I think the main thing he liked about me was my loyalty to my husband. There was one occasion when my husband and I attended a party together at Dan’s house, but mostly Dan and I saw each other 1:1. The last time we had dinner together, I was pregnant with my first child, who is now 24.
    So my view of that time in our lives was that we both had opportunity and motive to stray, but we turned away from those, and toward each other and created our family. But 15 years later, accusations were directed at me that I had had an emotional affair. This continued for 10 years until my husband finally agreed to counseling. I was so happy that we were finally going to sort it all out. But my husband remained stuck in his belief that I had betrayed him. It seemed as though all I had to do was say he was right and maybe we would be able to move on. But that would be a lie and I thought we were there to speak the truth. A year into our weekly counseling sessions, he began 1:1 therapy with another counselor, and they decided together that in fact I had had an emotional affair 25 years previous and that it probably should have been a deal breaker at the time, so maybe it still was. We had 3 children together, including one with autism, and had struggled all those years and remained committed to each other, and I really lost my will to continue.
    We’ve lived apart now for 5 months so it’s still early days. I still love him but I feel like I’ve been let out of jail. He seems very sad but is making admirable efforts to build a new life for himself.
    I don’t know if any of this is useful to those of you wondering if decades-old issues that have become murky over time are worth your pain in the here and now… but thought I would share.

    • RatherBeMe says:

      Your comments and story, tell me that there are so many dynamics at play in a long time relationship and that it is hard to pinpoint what it is that makes us give up and endeavor to find something, or someone new in our life.
      My story, (wont bore you) is similar. When I strayed I felt justified. Although that period is now history, I still feel no guilt or remorse at my actions.
      What keeps long term marrieds together is a combinations of many things. I find it hard to nail it down as to what one thing keeps me there. I think it is the fear of the unknown, being the biggest one.

      • Liberty says:

        RBM….just curious….about the guilt and remorse thing. I am wondering if feeling that way is easier or harder? A lot of people stay in a marriage out of guilt but if that is not the issue could the fear of the unknown be that strong? And what does it mean if a person feels no remorse? Just wondering! I’m always searching for all the possibilities of this crazy mess.

        Liberty

      • RatherBeMe says:

        I don’t know of anyone, and I can’t reason why, anyone would stay in a marriage because of guilt. It just doesn’t make sense to me. Sorry. It would serve no one.
        The fear of the unknown, I probably misstated. I’m sure you understand. When you don’t know what it will be like, you have to say to yourself, can I live with this. Principal is great in theory, but it is like leaving when you catch your spouse in infidelity. Seldom happens for a while.
        Ann Landers used to ask; Are you better off staying or leaving? You weigh it, study it, and come to a decision, if you can handle it, and the…..what is coming next. Coming next? It comes into play if you are leaving. What is next? Can you give up family. Are your g-children, your children, spouse’s family, all the friends, etc., are they all going to be backing you, your spouse or try to stay neutral? These are far more important than most think, and rise up to bite you.
        It’s hard to explain, but if you have been through a separation you know it is harder than it looks to be on paper.
        Emotions come into play. Being alone comes into play. Blood becomes thicker than water, and even though decisions can be reversed, hard feelings can’t be. And those hard feeling lay there, they grow, just like the inner feelings of the betrayed spouse grows if pushed under the rug.
        I feel very tormented because I have been on both sides of the DDay, and having the affair. I can honestly understand both sides.
        It is very tormenting to think of your spouse loving someone else, but then when you fall in love with someone else, you understand.
        Scary???

      • wallybear12 says:

        At what point do you decide I want a life of peace and happiness?
        The vows I took with this person meant what? To cheat to lie to live his life with whatever pleasures he wanted?
        And now that maybe the betrayed wants to live her life people who haven’t been in her shoes are saying stay.

      • RatherBeMe says:

        “At what point do you decide I want a life of peace and happiness?”
        The day you decide that no one else is important but you.

        “The vows I took with this person meant what?”
        Nothing.

        “To cheat to lie to live his life with whatever pleasures he wanted?”
        That is what happiness is all about.

        “And now that maybe the betrayed wants to live her life people who haven’t been in her shoes are saying stay.”
        Maybe afraid to admit their mistakes.

      • cathmae says:

        RBM, your response to Wallybear’s questions strikes me as flippant. Deciding to choose a life of peace and happiness requires extension reflection and I doubt most who leave their marriages in search of peace and happiness simply decide that no one else is important. Many of us stay for years because we put the well-being of our partners and children ahead of our own, and then look for ways to take care of everyone’s interests once we decide to leave. And sorry… but cheating and lying are not what happiness is all about. Not even close.

      • wallybear12 says:

        A common trait among those who cheat is to live their lives for their pleasures only.

        For some there does come a time with their immortality looks them back and only then some may decide to quit the drinking and other vices.
        And others what was the truth about this marriage? This life?
        If knowing leaving makes all the clutter in my head go away, the need not to take drugs for anxiety and depression caused only by the affair would I leave?

      • RatherBeMe says:

        I don’t mean it to be flippant and I don’t know what you mean by “extension reflection”. Maybe you could be a little bit clearer for me.
        I am saying that it takes serious soul searching to decide what is going to make you happy, and if staying for your kids and family is what it is, then OK. Do it. It is what makes you happy.
        It’s your choice. I think that it makes you a martyr in your own mind, not in mine. With as many kids as there are that come out of divorced families and make it, I think you are grasping at a token straw. Maybe it is a maternal thing. I’m sorry, I just don’t get it. ;-/
        I think that if making the break from a bad marriage and saving yourself from a demeaning life with a spouse who has abused their marital responsibility, well that is OK too. You do have the choice.
        I think your first responsibility is to YOU. You are the ultimate choice maker, and ultimately person responsible for the decisions that YOU make.
        No one else can make you happy. They may very well play in the course of it, but in the end you have to make the final decision.

        If I implied that “cheating and lying” were the road to happiness, I am apologize for, even you taking it that way.
        Honesty is a key to happiness, but you have to be honest yourself, to yourself. I never meant it any other way.

      • Not Over It says:

        I’ve just read over the comments on this interesting thread again – I haven’t had much time to participate myself – and, ahem — I am catching on here that you, RBM, are back pedaling a little here. I also took your first comment to Wallybear as facetious. If you were trying to lighten the tone here on this thread, it fell flat.

      • RatherBeMe says:

        I wasn’t, but if that is the way that you perceive it, then……………so be it.

      • cathmae says:

        RBM, “extensive reflection” was the intent. Sorry my typo caused so much confusion. I don’t think parents who work at mitigating harm and fallout to their children are martyrs… and no, it isn’t just a maternal thing. My children’s father takes his responsibilities for the well being of our children as seriously as I do.

      • Not Over It says:

        HI RBM – I know you have struggled with staying or leaving, and that your marriage is not a happy one. But still, RBM, I struggle to understand the both of you. If you once loved each other, you can love each other again. I really believe that. It follows with every theory I’ve read, even the ones that conflict with each other. In this one thing, there is agreement. You can if you both want to. But like you said, it’s a choice. But if you’re unhappy, would it not be advisable to try?

        I have not yet read your whole story. I’ve mostly read the parts where you were mourning the loss of your affair partner. At the time I read that, I was not yet ready to deal with hearing that sort of thing, but I would now like to understand you better. You’ve said some incredibly wise things to Dynamic Eclectic and to me. I’d like to know what happened to you.

        Be seeing you…

        DJ

    • Not Over It says:

      Thank you, Cathmae. It seems sad to me that even though you love each other, you couldn’t make it work. I know you tried hard, but still it’s sad… it again shows that betrayal cannot be dismissed with handling it. I appreciate your sharing.

      Grace and peace to you,
      DJ

      • cathmae says:

        It seems my EX and I defined betrayal very differently. He had what might be described as a very low threshold: he did not want me talking to other men; if I laughed at another man’s jokes it cut him so very deeply, as though it was an act of extreme intimacy. Even the attention I gave my father was threatening. It would be easy to write him off as a control freak, but I tried very hard to understand and to help him see how loved he was. I needed to stop, it was so defeating.
        Reading many of the comments to your posts does help me understand his reality a little more, even though I do not share it. This might be a post in itself, but what do you see as some of the subtler distinctions between a friendship and an Emotional Affair?

      • Not Over It says:

        Hi Cathmae – as RBM said, there are many facets to any relationship and your husband’s feelings about your interactions with men most certainly needed intervention. It was not just about a perceived betrayal, but about a lot of things in how he felt about his relationship with you. You have been through so much. I’m sorry if I seemed insensitive. I should know better than to answer when I am rushed, which I was yesterday.

        Love & prayers,
        DJ

  5. Healing takes Time, but it is not Time that causes the healing.
    Teresa and Maxine, I am so sorry for all that you have and are continuing to go through.
    Maxine, what if your husband really never did have a sexual encounter with his alienator? Will you ever believe him—perhaps that is why you are considering another polygraph. If the polygraph shows he is being truthful about not having sex, will you believe it? That may sound like a silly question, so let me elaborate a bit. You have been cycling these thoughts through your head for the last 28 years, so they’ve become part of your normal—though uncomfortable—life and pattern. That means that even if you have what really is the truth and it’s still not what you think, it may be difficult for you to believe it.
    And what if he did have sex with her and he tells the truth about it (finally) either before the polygraph or during it? Will his truth set your marriage free—since it’s coming so late? Is your decision if he had sex he’s out, regardless of what he admits? I’m not trying to imply there is a right or wrong action, I’m just trying to figure out where you are in this and if you don’t know, maybe the questions can help you figure it out as well.
    I think that your daughters have a point: you are obsessing. But I’m not saying that to say ‘mom, you’re being too obsessive, if you’d just stop…’ I think obsessing is part of a dysfunctional pattern you have created and it’s a habit or perhaps even a compulsion like OCD. That means you aren’t going to stop just because someone logically explains why you should stop. It sounds to me that you both could be experiencing PTSD. It’s not fair of your husband’s to ask or expect you to get over -what they did and your PTSD—and it’s through, not over—without professional help. And by professional help I mean both marriage counseling where you are both involved as well as individual help for the psychological-medical consequences you have been suffering.

    So Maxine, what are your plans if you do kick him out/leave him? What does divorce look and feel like? Is it better than what you have? Will it have different downsides that you are not now experiencing?
    What is the best result? If you could, would you want to stay in your marriage and heal it—whether there was or was not a sexual encounter? I’m not asking if you think healing it or is not possible, I’m asking about a hypothetical situation in which healing, forgiveness and all that is possible, then what? It’s like thinking of a miracle. In that miracle you can’t change what has happened; the miracle is what happens in response now and into the future.
    I am going to recommend you look for someone who specializes in one or both of the following—I don’t know if people specialize in both though.
    EFT: Emotionally Focused Therapy. Look that up, it’s supposed to be especially beneficial in cases of infidelity. Sue Johnson is the founder and she is the author of ‘Hold Me Tight.’
    The other is Solution-Oriented Brief Therapy. That is a therapy that focuses specifically on solutions and considers the patient to be the expert. The question I asked about a miracle scenario is a classic SOBT technique. SOBT will look at times when things were working—so Maxine, it may ask you about times since the emotional affair 28 years ago when you were not obsessing and those will be considered the foundations of success that you need to look to in order to find success—for the obsession part of the issue—today. Michele Weiner Davis who wrote ‘Divorcebusting’ and ‘Divorce Remedy’ does SOBT and ‘Divorcebusting’ is like an introduction to SOBT for marriage.
    In addition, there is a registry of marriage-friendly therapists set-up by William Doherty. That registry has specific requirements for inclusion. http://www.marriagefriendlytherapists.com/

    • RatherBeMe says:

      Very enlightening.
      I found the question, “what are your plans” to be the most important part. How uncomfortable can you stand it to be before you do something about it? How far will you go to satisfy your unhappiness that may only be in your head? The aftermath of divorce/seperation is especially hard after retirement age. All kinds of issues pop up about housing, insurance, finances, family, and friends. It affects everyone and everything. Can you risk losing everything that you have now? Can it be that bad? Living with it seems to be what most do.
      It can be eyeopening when it actually comes down to making such a decision.

    • Not Over It says:

      I agree with RatherBeMe – very enlightening. I am going to look into those therapies. The first person I think of is NMWF1, but I may need it, too. Thank you so much RCR. We are all blessed to have you here.

      Love & prayers,
      DJ

  6. SHAPE says:

    Maxine 6–
    You and I are about the same age, I believe. And, somehow, being on the high side of 60 (or in my case the low side of 70), makes a difference to me. I was directly lied to for a year during his affair, and then indirectly (by omission) for another year after he had called it off (but he was still secretive about a couple of email accounts that I discovered). And then again, just this past September, when she emailed him again and he responded instead of telling me about it as he had promised so many times to do.

    But at my age, do I really WANT to leave him? No–I still love him, but sometimes I am not sure I can live with the mistrust and doubt I have. I can put on a good act, but the triggers are always there. I am in very good health, and could live on my own, but then, there are the good memories, too. This is a second marriage for us both (infidelity was not a part of the reason our first marriages broke up), and I really don’t want to go through another divorce. We don’t have children together, so that is not a reason to stay together.

    If I can’t know he loves me above all others, and if I can’t know he won’t do this again–then I get less sure I want to stay in this marriage. He was laid off from his job in early October of this year. He’s managed to get another job, but at a greatly reduced salary, and I think he is coping with all that loss. We are fine financially, but I think his job loss is making him somewhat depressed, which I, in turn, sometimes interpret as his being unhappy again.

    For now, I will stay – but I think I may have to give myself a deadline for us to really hash out the pieces of what he did. It’s the lying that is the hardest for me to deal with.

    • Not Over It says:

      Hi SHAPE – I feel exactly the same way. My husband is very uncommunicative and I feel stuck. Every time I start to feel that trust is coming back, he does something stupid to tear it all down again, so after two years I am still struggling.

      It could very well be that I am being paranoid about some things, but I think I should be able to expect that my husband needs to help me with that, not turn a cold shoulder because he is insecure and afraid and racked with guilt.

      But then I soften and think that I am sorry that he is so insecure and afraid and racked with guilt. And around and around I go…

      You are doing great, SHAPE. Exceedingly so.

      Love & prayers,
      DJ

      • SHAPE says:

        DJ–
        This is so much how I feel also. I know my husband is ashamed of what he did, and I, too, can get very paranoid about things that come up. Sometimes he looks at me like I have no reason to be that way, but then usually will come around. Although, sometimes, it also has to come to an angry head, with both of us not in a good way. But, that, too, sometimes has an up-side the anger sometimes getting things out in the open that need to be dealt with in a way that eventually does work.
        Thank you for the kind words about how I am doing. Sometimes I am okay, but sometimes I am definitely not. It can be because of a look, or something said/unsaid that triggers me.
        I am going to the east coast tomorrow to celebrate my little grandson’s first birthday. I am excited to be going; but again, I am always fearful when I am gone that something will happen. Will this feeling every stop? I hope so!!
        Blessing to you, DJ, for the encouragement you give to everyone.
        SHAPE

    • Broken Joan says:

      This is in response to shape and Maxine here I was thinking I was the only woman in her mid 60′s to have a husband who is dumb enough to cheat at this time in our lives. I am only 5 months pass D day and am totally confused about my future if I even have one.

  7. [...] Time heals… or does it? (notoverit.wordpress.com) [...]

  8. nmwf1 says:

    hi Dj and all. I want to first say, As you know I have had and am still having a very hard time of coping with my husbands EA. I was very traumatized by it and am suffering from PTSD. I want to say that I am in a sort of catch 22 situation. I will explain, .. I do not want a divorce, I could never make that decision because to be honest with you, I have always been hopelessly in love with my husband, not just love him but in love with him. He is very remorseful and regrets what he has done. and I know he loves me very deep. i can feel it. However,.My problem is not weather or not to stay or go. My problems lie in my heart., the pain has cut me so deep that i cannot cope emotionally. My emotional roller coaster ride has taken its toll on me.. He loves me I know that, He goes above and beyond to prove it to me. He tells me that he cannot bare to lose me and he has begged for my forgiveness. But my resentment at this time is very strong. I just don’t know if it is pride or what, but I simply cannot accept what happened, I cannot rationalize my thoughts about it. I admit I obsess about every last detail, almost like a broken record. but I can’t control it. and I still have episodes of rage with him and meltdowns, I don’t understand myself and my ability to cope. I almost feel like I have become mentally ill because of it. I have almost taken myself to a nervous breakdown several times over the past year..I just feel like my whole world was shattered. I just want to come to terms with it and move on with our lives together My husband always tells me he will be there for me as long as it takes. But I don’t want to be this way I just don’t know how to stop. An I am tired of torturing him over it. It just gives me more to be miserable about. My latest meltdown was last night. I let things build in my head for a few days and the next thing I know I started asking him questions and it turned into a nightmare for him. I was angry, I was jealous, I was vulgar, I said things I regret. Then I had a melt down, My husband cried with me as he has done many times with me since DDAY. He is a wonderful man. I am just mentally scared from all of this. I hate that I used to be so strong, but not when it came to my relationship with my husband. Even I can’t believe my own reactions to it all. So where does a person go from here? I want to say one more thing and this my offend a few but, honestly i do not feel a damn bit sorry for a cheater if he is mourning his AP. The way I see it is. if they want to stay with the spouse that they betrayed than they better just keep it to themselves and suffer in silence. Its bad enough that they cheated in the first place,but you cant have your cake and eat it to. Mourning the AP is just adding insult to injury, as far as I’m concerned Its all or nothing. That is where I would draw my line. I cannot handle what has happened as it is, much less him mourning his AP. They put themselves in that position to begin with, so I do not feel sorry for a cheater in the least if they mourn the AP. If they miss them that damn bad than they have no business staying in the marriage and torturing the betrayed spouse any more than they already have, I would rather be alone and miss him than be with him and see him missing someone else. What would be the purpose except to be tortured.

    • RatherBeMe says:

      I understand all your feelings. I been there, done that. There were times that I should have been hospitalized, but due to the miracles of modern chemistry, I made it through.
      I finally accepted what it all was, what I had and where we were going. Thats where the time heals, come into play. Acceptance!!!
      Then the unthinkable, I fell for someone else. Love?, Lust?, Infatuation?, I didn’t know at the time but what ever it was, it caught me, tagged me and ground me up into the same thing that I had determinately learned to hate over all those years.
      It may have come down to the simple explanation that I wasn’t getting out of my marriage what I needed. The old unfulfilled needs story.
      I understand the love part, that you feel for him.
      I think it comes down to self protection. You are doing it for you. Your life is the only one you can really control. It at least gives you a grasp on it.
      My best to you. This journey you are on is a tough one. A bumpy one. I hope it stays simple for you, with no detours.

      • nmwf1 says:

        Loving my husband has nothing to do with self protection. I have been married to this man for 34 years. He is, and always has been the love of my life. And oh please, unfulfilled needs, give me a break, why don’t you just say she isn’t the one you want to fill your needs. It is someone else. The excuse of unfulfilled needs is such COP OUT! I cant in my heart understand the concept of loving someone and being able to be with someone else. I cant comprehend that at all. How can a person do that? i don’t want to be with anyone else BUT my husband.

    • SHAPE says:

      I would not feel sorry for the cheater who mourns his AP either. But I finally came to realize that he did miss her, although I will say that he didn’t throw it in my face. He would deny that he did, but I could kind of tell anyway. And, in the end, when she emailed him on his birthday (after over a year of no contact), there he was responding to her instead of telling me about it. I found out by seeing the 4th or 5th email, and now am starting all over. I do think he doesn’t think of her so much now, as he told her they could not continue emailing, and she agreed it needed to stop. She was very abrupt in her wording. Those are 2 emails I saw. I hope it is over, and that he doesn’t still think of her, but I can’t control his thoughts, either. Time, time, time seems to help – at least I hope so.

      • Not Over It says:

        I don’t feel sorry for cheaters’ feelings about the affair partner, either. That’s their own damned fault. But I do acknowledge that they do go through withdrawal and grief. Just don’t expect me to feel sorry about it. The pain they feel is no comparison to the pain of betrayal, and since they destroyed someone in order to develop those feelings, I have no sympathy for their pain concerning their affair partner. The pain of their guilt, however, I do feel sorry for. Guilt means that they have realized that they were wrong and that they regret their actions. Or at least they are starting to…

        I’m so sorry you are starting over, SHAPE. It seems we’ll both be here for a while to come.

        Love & prayers,
        DJ

      • RatherBeMe says:

        All,
        I don’t have life figured out and I admit it.
        I agree, there is no authentic justification for cheating. NONE!
        How does it happen? In most cases we that have cheated are somehow in a fog and are looking for something.
        I know first-hand the hurt, the anger, the loss of trust, and living on one side a marriage, and trying to put a marriage back together after finding out that your is spouse cheating, both emotionally, and/or physically.
        I also understood the grief that she had when forced to give up her AP’s but I didn’t have a lot of sympathy for her.
        I agree affairs are self-serving, and selfish.
        I wish I understood life. At least my own life. All I can say that I have tried to adapt to a life and lifestyle that benefits me, and works for me. I am the first to admit that I think of myself first and put myself first. I stay in this marriage because I am not enemies with my spouse, quite the opposite, I do enjoy her company. It seems to be working for us at the present time and has for many, many years.
        It certainly is financially advantageous for us both to maintain our household and that works for us. We are happy with the arraignment.
        Family is important to both of us, and I have seen what happens when you split up a marriage. You also split not only the physical things, but you also split the families, the friends and everything and everyone that is of value to you and your spouse. In most cases leaving both devastated.
        Unless you are going to move up, there is no reason to move downward.
        I am going to assume, (not good) that most of you who read here and comment here have NOT been separated, nor divorced yet, nor experienced the horrors of it. At this point in my life I don’t have it bad enough to even think about such an action and doing it again.

        Unmet needs are one of the prime criteria for those of us that have wandered. For those of you that are betrayed spouses, I would ask you to answer the question, what was your spouse missing or unfulfilled needs that made them think it was possibly OK to stray. I am not trying to share any blame, just making the observation. Unless you married a sociopath, something is wrong. If you are married to such a person, a sociopath, then beating these boards is a waste of your time.
        In my case it took 5-6 years to go from employer/employee, falling in love and later to the ending of our relationship. Yes I did care for her, and I was ready to leave my marriage but it was her that waffled and wouldn’t commit. She had many reasons not to, and I can logically understand why she didn’t.

        It is what it is.

        I grieved during the year that I attempted to end it, being drawn back in by her time after time. I have grieved most of the last year and a half that I have not had any contact at all with her. I saw ending it as self preservation. Every day seems a lot brighter.
        Bluntly said, she didn’t love me enough. Just as cold, I must not have loved her enough to do everything possible to continue the relationship, end my marriage, and marry her. I didn’t see it that way for a long time but acceptance and coming out of the fog has changed my way of thinking.
        Don’t we all want happiness? Isn’t that one of the thoughts of being married and having a happy marriage? I think it depends on what happy is, and how you define it.
        I am not conflicted. I am gaining on acceptance every day. Acceptance of what I have and what I don’t have in my life. The fantasy is still there. I have always been a dreamer. If it happens……. great. If it doesn’t well………then I guess I will have to deal with it to the best of my mental ability.

        I have lived the life of a betrayed spouse for way too many years not to have empathy for you that are going through it. I wish you all the best, and finding true happiness.

      • wallybear12 says:

        RBM
        First of all thank you for your honesty.
        It sounds and I could be wrong but that you would have left your wife if the ow wanted to leave her marriage and be with you is this true?
        Also is whatever that was missing before still missing? Would you have another affair?
        While in the affair was there any thoughts of how hurtful this would be to your wife?

      • nmwf1 says:

        Hi shape, I know that must have drove you nuts. Honestly my husband has been so busy trying to make it up to me that, if he did miss her he never showed it. But to be honest it was one of the things I obsessed over, I was so worried that he missed calling her and talking to her, cause they camped on the phone, nite and day. I kept thinking that maybe he was having withdraws from it. I really don’t know maybe he was but he did not dare show me. i am in such a fragile state of mind at times that any inkling what so ever of him missing her would cause grief beyond words for him. And me to say the least. I know that we cannot control their thoughts, but like I said earlier he had better suffer in silence. Because frankly my dear I don’t give a damn if he misses her. And for that matter I hope the hell she misses him so bad she cant stand herself. I have absolutely no sympathy for either of them in the missing department.

    • Nmwf1,
      I am so sorry that recovery feels so elusive. This may not be very reassuring, but you are normal. Recovery is a challenge for a lot of betrayed spouses.
      What sort of professional help have you sought? Marriage counseling? Treatment for PTSD or Depression?
      Last year I was coaching an LBS (Left Behind Spouse) and she was panicking. That’s normal and I see it a lot, but her levels had me concern. She was punishing herself for not being able to heal. So I wrote a series at my blog to explain the initial Shock & Anxiety that is normal. I write it to reassure her—and others. Here’s a link to the first post in the series.
      It has been about a year-and-a-half since I wrote that and now the person I coached is one of the moderator-mentors at my forum! The mentors are a select group chosen by nominations—usually from amongst the mentors, but also from regular posters. She got through that initial panic and her fear that she was somehow weaker than the rest of us and got through it so well that she now mentors the newbies!! She’s awesome!

      As far as feeling sympathy for the betrayed spouse if or when they mourn the alienator… I don’t know about sympathy, but I do feel it is important that we accept reality and in some cases the reality is that the betraying spouse will experience withdrawal—creating a depression—when they end the affair and are no longer in contact with the alienator. I don’t feel sorry for them—they made that bed, but I do feel it is important to understand that it is happening even if we don’t like it. In some cases it is a withdrawal from the addictive hormones associated with in-fatuation and the betrayer thinks that was love. It’s an addictive withdrawal.
      Does their withdrawal and depression add insult to injury? Well, sure, but that part is not their fault. Sorry, I’m not trying to be dismissive or rude by saying that, but we can choose to feel hurt and insulted and it’s normal. But it shows we are taking the actions of betrayal personally—as though the actions were intentionally against us. Sure, they were against us, but they were not intentional. Sad to say, but we were not in the betrayer’s thoughts—or not enough to dissuade them from adultery. Their affair was a selfish action that was not meant to be personal.

    • Liberty says:

      mnwf1, My H had an EA too, and I basically said the same thing you did about them camping out on the phone. It has been 6 months since I found out and I can tell you I have done the same things, obsessed over every freaking detail and cried and begged him to tell my why the hell he did it….I mean there have been times where I felt like throwing something or hitting him over the head with the baseball bat I keep under my bed. And all the time I have been miserable. And feeling sorry for myself. Not doing anything but going to work and come home. Cut off friends, family, basically just being sad at home. Read every book I could get my hands on, and still didnt feel to much better.

      Now I have found a counselor who we have seen twice and she gets it! And we are scheduled for once a week the next 9 weeks. And I am starting to get it….and my H is maybe starting to get it. I would never feel sorry for my H if he missed the AP either, and I have never asked him. However, he said at one time he never thought of her unless I bring it up, so why the hell do I want to keep getting in these situations where all hell breaks loose in my house and we fight for hours!

      I am starting to see that my H is a good man who did something bad. The worst thing a spouse could do to their partner, but I just have to let go of the anger and woe is me, its not helping us and do I want to lose my H over being to stubborn to try to help myself? The counselor said why am I continuing to make myself miserable and I couldnt answer her…Do I want to punish my H or just make him so damn sorry that he did this terrible thing? I totally get it, that we were having a few problems in our marriage and he wasnt getting “his needs met” Blah Blah Blah, but neither was I, I just chose to not cheat! But I can’t change what he did and he is very remorseful and talks at the counselors about how he know’s he f’d up and has so much to make up for. If I don’t come to grips with this I feel I am losing out, either I get a divorce and be sad or really commit to forgiving and try to be happy. I still love my H so much and he loves me or he would not be here still.

      The counselor did talk about PTSD and I think it fits all us in dealing with this crap. I hope you start to feel better soon! Take care.

      Liberty

  9. nmwf1 says:

    RBM, . You are a classic case, kind of like the abused that becomes the abuser, Why in Gods name would you betray your spouse in the same way. Maybe they deserve it maybe they don’t, If you are doing it out of revenge, than what is the point in staying in the marriage? Why not leave the marriage instead? Why put your marriage in another crisis? You knew what you were doing. You had already been down that same road already. You knew the pain it caused you and yet you were willing to risk him feeling the same way. ( I assume your the wife) (cause I haven’t read all your posts) Never the less, Why would you risk what ever relationship you had left. The only thing that I can figure is that, you didn’t care anymore. He did it to you first, So you did it to him when faced with temptation. I get it. But that makes you no better than him. cheating is a cruel, sickening,pathetic thing that people do to one another. If that other person is just so great that you just cant resist, than why don’t you get out of your marriage and find what you are looking for, It isn’t your husband, cause it seems that you were hell bent on destroying what what left of your marriage. Cheating is pathetic. and there is no excuse that is good enough. Lies, deceit, betrayal, people just don’t care anymore. Faithfulness is obsolete, Its all about them and there own pleasure, the hell with everyone else, I am going to get what I want, no matter who it hurts. That is what cheating is all about. It is shameful and pathetic, you were not naive you knew exactly what you were doing, You should have turned away. Why didn’t you ? Was destroying your husband in the same way worth it? Or maybe I am just assuming that he was remorseful and regrets what he did to you, and maybe i am assuming that he was ashamed of what he did and still wanted to be the man that you always wanted him to be, for you ,for your lives together maybe I am just assuming that he still cared about you and wanted to save you marriage, Did you justify it cause he did it to you? REALLY? I am not bashing, I am trying to understand? I hate cheating why the hell would anyone knowingly want to go there, for the second time round. Wasn’t that enough pain inflicted on you life. The only thing I can figure is revenge. But revenge is not always sweet. IS IT? I do not buy the excuse that it just happened. You let it happen. My husband let it happen. All cheaters have a choice.And they make that choice. They block you out of their mind. They think that person is just so great. so exciting, so exciting that they just cant resist,! Well what I have to say is if they are so great, why the hell do they get involved with a married person, its because its secret, its fun, and its temporary. They have no commitment to you. They can walk away when they loose interest. And the minute you leave your spouse for them, they run like hell. And then your marriage is once again left in a crisis. What the two of you tried so hard to overcome, tried so hard to mend, wasn’t even worth the effort. It was all in vane. Now you are both broken people trying to survive the agony of betrayal. Its painful, its daunting, and it will leave that lasting scar for the rest of your lives.

    • Not Over It says:

      Actually NM – RBM is a man. He would not be here if he thought he had life all figured out, but I cannot disagree with your point. There is no such thing as justification for an affair. Period. I’m sorry RBM, but I see unmet needs as an excuse, not a justification. No one’s needs are met 100 percent of the time for any spouse by any spouse. And yet, most of us remain faithful. Unmet needs are an excuse used by people who have allowed themselves to slide down the wrong path into becoming selfish and self-serving. In my opinion, that is most often the cause – selfish and self-serving attitudes. Very good people sometimes delude themselves into this trap.

      Of course, this is all hindsight for most cheating spouses. After the fact, they realize their head is in their ass and when they take it out – wow, life is so much clearer, and they see the damage they have caused.

      I’m sorry if I seem harsh in my attitude here, but I stand firm in my opinion that infidelity is wrong, no matter what. There are other ways – clean, decent, and proper ways – of dealing with unhappiness. Breaking vows and promises, married or not, and betraying the person who is supposed to be your partner in life, is just plain wrong.

      RBM – I appreciate your candor and I am touched by your well wishes. I have read enough of your words on Dynamic Eclectic’s blog and here on my blog to respect the things you have to say, and I have been impacted in positive ways by you many times. I do not, however, understand your personal life. I don’t judge you – but honestly, the conflict I find in your words perplexes me. I know that life is not always black and white, but I think you know that I cannot condone infidelity. I can forgive it but I can’t condone it. Life does not have to be so much in the gray area. I think you’d be happier if you stepped away from there.

      My best to you, too… may you find your way to real happiness.
      DJ

  10. nmwf1 says:

    I apologize RBM, I assumed that you were the wife. my mistake.Regardless who did what i stand firm on my opinion about infidelity. Thx DJ

  11. “Unmet needs are one of the prime criteria for those of us that have wandered. For those of you that are betrayed spouses, I would ask you to answer the question, what was your spouse missing or unfulfilled needs that made them think it was possibly OK to stray.”
    That is one of those loaded questions that betrayed spouses hate!
    And yet it can be valid. I said ‘can be’ not that it is valid in all cases. Personally I steer away from it unless I wrap it up in explanations. I think it can be an excuse used by betrayers and I also think that sometimes they have a point. That does not mean the reaction of cheating was justified. The betraying spouse chose a poor coping method for dealing with their unmet needs. But the betrayer’s wrong doesn’t eliminate a possible failure of the betrayed to meet needs.
    But what were those ‘needs?’ That to me is key and it is why the question is not always valid. Counselors ask it, but sometimes they do so with an almost accusatory and blaming tone. “Well what did you do wrong to make him stray?” They don’t use those words, but that is sometimes the message that comes across.
    Sometimes it’s phrases as “what need is the alienator meeting that you are not?” and the counselor can be pretty insistent that there is something. Then the betrayed spouse feels guilty and goes on an often futile search for her or his marital failures. Spending time seeking failures can be unproductive and guilt-forming; instead consider why the betraying spouse felt neglected. No one is perfect and it’s inevitable that a spouse will not fulfill every need, but there are circumstances when a betraying spouse refuses to accept, acknowledge or even recognize a spouse’s attention. Explain and rephrase the question.
    “What is the quality within the alienator that allows him or her to project his repressions onto her, thus yielding an attraction? What attracted him to the alienator that you couldn’t offer?”
    Often there are needs the betrayed spouse is not or was not meeting that the alienator is meeting, but these may not be due to spousal neglect, rather they may be due to a refusal to allow the spouse to meet these needs or a failure to communicate the needs.

    • wallybear12 says:

      My H unmet need conver would have to go like this:
      Babe I know you a great mom and have a full time job to pay the bills
      But I need more attention
      I want you to leave work for a couple hours come meet me for lunch get dressed up tell me what a great guy I am
      Text me during the day and tell me how great I am
      Oh and during these lunches don’t bring up anything about the kids, bills, any negativity
      Just tell me how wonderful I am

    • wallybear12 says:

      More unmet needs conver

      When were at the kids baseball, football, daughters college graduation, and I’m feeling so proud like we did this together
      He should have said I want you to text me and tell me how much you miss me and how great I am
      When I’m taking care if you parents
      Why didn’t you say what I really wanted was for you to call me and make plans for our next get together
      After having sex…. Which we did have
      What you didn’t say was you really want me to text you and tell you your the best and how great you are

      Why didn’t you tell me this?
      Here I thought were 52 and 58
      We’re comfortable we’ve had a good marriage and were partners in all if life’s ups and downs all the curves thrown in our way

      But yet you un met needs were what?
      To have someone give you all this flattery and attention

      And that’s why when the shit hit the fan you knew what you have with me is real, the times at church, the pride in our kids, the careers, everything….

    • RatherBeMe says:

      RollerCoasterRider,
      Great reply, and comeback. Yes it is a loaded question. It’s easy to see that you understand that there may be many different dynamics in a marriage and that there is no “norm” and the “should be”, can be different to different couples.
      I personally recognize that I stayed too long and should have made my escape from it many years ago. I stayed for many reasons whether they are valid or not, it doesn’t matter. It is water under the bridge. I was, am here now and in my mind thought I could find happiness or something better, not by having an affair, but by finding someone new, thereby a new life for me. This was my chance at escape. It was simple in my mind. I was ready to exit my marriage and ready to move on to someone who I THOUGHT would give me the elusive happiness that I desired.
      I had the simple needs for a spouse and I wasn’t getting that need fulfilled. There is more to fulfilling that need than just the presence of the wife in the house at night and a marriage license. That spousal relationship was one of things I wasn’t getting. I blame myself for not demanding it. It is my failure.
      We had no one to blame for own lack of some of the significant parts of a marriage but ourselves.
      I don’t claim it as a justification, It was only what I was looking for.

      I was looking for someone who stroked my ego.
      I was looking for a sexual partner.
      I was looking for fidelity in a partner.
      I was looking for someone who respected my values.
      I was looking for someone to spend time with.
      I was looking for someone I could give some happiness to.
      I was looking for someone who made me feel special.
      I was looking for someone to share my life with.
      I was looking for someone that I could trust.
      I was looking for someone that didn’t abuse me.
      Those are just some of the things that I was missing in my marriage and was searching for.

      What some you don’t get, is that just because those things are missing in your life, you don’t throw away what you do have, there are good things in your life. It isn’t personal, its just business. You take the path that is going to benefit you.

      I find that time does heal. Time clears away the fog. I am in hope that you all will find happiness in your marriages, and rebuilding will come easily and smoothly. Give time, time, to work it’s miracles.

      • nmwf1 says:

        Well RBM that is quite a list, I’m not trying to be a smart ass, but really you shouldn’t have cheated, you should have ran to the court house and got a divorce . What the hell were you thinking. i get your misery but cheating was not the answer, you could have done what needed to be done and then found that special person with all of those qualities. I don’t believe in cheating, I believe a person has to take a good look at their self, soul searching, and then do the right thing, Cheating is just plain wrong. it didn’t bring you any closer to what you were looking for you just created a bigger problem.

  12. I just realized that I said I gave the link, but I must have forgot to actually pate it in–sorry.
    So here is the link to the first post in my series called “The Immediate and Prolonged Physiological Responses to Bomb Drop
    Emergency Response”

    http://loveanyway.theherosspouse.com/?p=270

  13. [...] Time heals… or does it? (notoverit.wordpress.com) [...]

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