Thursday, April 29, 2010

Extreme Measures: How Far Did You Go To Heal?

The days and weeks (and months!) following discovery or disclosure of a spouse's affair (D-Day) are fraught with drama. While much of it is warranted, it's worth considering that some...might be over-reacting.
Stay with me here.
I'm not suggesting that you're not entitled to the blind rage my friend Dana felt when her husband finally confessed to a workplace affair with his boss, something he'd been denying for more than two years. Or that you're not entitled to the incredible pain associated with learning that the one person who you thought had your back...was flat on his back with another woman.
What I'm referring to are the extreme measures that some of us go to...or at least consider...in an attempt to stop the pain. Sometimes it can be exactly what's needed. For example, I know of one BWC member who burned her mattress after learning her husband had brought his OW to their bed. Extreme. But, she reports, cathartic.
I wanted to sell our house when I learned that "encounters" had taken place here. In our laundry room! (The least she could have done was throw in a load or two for me while she was screwing my husband...). I couldn't imagine the day when I could separate my whites and colors, without wanting to separate my husband's head from his body. I gave up the idea when I realized that it would likely be me packing up our lives and getting ready for Open Houses. It was all I could do to get dressed and brush my teeth; moving was just too extreme, even for me.
I know of Betrayed Wives who burned items they learned were given to their spouses by the OW. (Come to think of it, fire seems to be something of an obsession with betrayed wives.) Or demanded their spouses quit jobs if it was a workplace affair.
And, of course, the most extreme Betrayed Wife move of them all: Lorena Bobbit dismembering her husbands...ummm...member.
What's the most extreme move you made when faced with betrayal? Did it lead to healing? Or harm? Would you do it again? Or do you regret it? Share your thoughts...

6 comments:

  1. I read his hidden journal, in its entirety, once I stumbled upon it. It included two lengthy love letters from his latest girlfriend in which she argued why he should leave me. It also included references to his having had affairs with at least 6 women over at least 10 years.

    Damn right I'm glad I read it! If I hadn't, I might never have known what a complete slime he was and why I'm way, WAY better off without him. (This doesn't mean I'm not still reeling from it all, 8 years later, because I still am. But I'm still glad I read it.)

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  2. oh I forgot--I also took a hammer to my gold wedding band and smashed it to pieces (on the concrete floor in the basement). very gratifying. when i told my 25-year-old daughter what I'd done, she was shocked and it seemed as if she thought I'd gone way off the deep end mentally. but I hadn't--and it felt good that if I couldn't hammer HIM I could at least hammer SOMETHING that shattered.

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  3. So far, all I have done is tore up the photo of the OW that he had hidden amongst his stuff. And I threw away a coffee cup she gave him for Christmas (he said it was from his cousin). I wanted to do much worse (take a sledge hammer to his beloved expensive motorcycle because his "ho's" sat on my part of the seat or drop his computer out of the 2nd story window or smash his cell phone with a baseball bat)...didn't do it, though, but the fantasy of it made me feel a little better for the moment! LOL! I haven't thought about fire for some reason...........

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  4. I threw our rings into traffic. I emptied our bank account. I changed the locks. I put everything he owned in trash bags on the front lawn during the rain. All of this on D-Day and I don't regret a thing! I felt powerful and in control when everything around me was out of control. Very she-woman!

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  5. Love it! I think it's critical to regain some sense of power. That feeling of betrayal being done TO us can completely destroy any sense of control we formerly felt over our lives. Getting that back is really important, I think, in moving us forward in a positive way.
    One expert I spoke with insisted that the angry betrayed wives weren't the one he worried about in terms of recovering...it was those who DIDN'T get angry.

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  6. I completely lost it. I destroyed his stuff in front of him. Awards went flying across the room, glass smashing, ripped up the paper, screaming and crying. It was wonderful and terrible. Then I cut the crotches out of a bunch of his favorite clothes, trashed his shop, took a hammer the chair he had just bought while we were on vacation together. Mind you, I am NOT like this, and hate destroying things. However, he had just admitted to strippers and prostitutes and I was absolutely devastated and just let it all go. I destroyed his past in a pale semblance of how he had destroyed mine.

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