The kickass survival site for anyone who's ever been lied to, cheated on and left for dead.
I told my therapist I over think everything. What does this or that mean? I'm always looking for signs of this and that. It can drive me crazy. I know I'm hyper vigilant and it is exhausting thinking about it all.
I was NEVER prone to over thinking UNTIL D Day! Wow! You put it into perspective for me AND lightened my mood! Once again, Elle, you nailed it! Thank you!
On d day #1 I found a few emails btwn h & ow. I sent them to my email. My h promptly took my phone & deleted them all. Months later when I was calm he said he deleted them because he knew I would obsess and over analyze them & dissect every word. He was absolutely right-- I would have. I now have a recording of a bunch of voicemails left him by several women including his first sexual affair partner. I periodically torture myself by listening. I have it hidden from him but he knows I have it. He periodically says he wishes he could find it so that he can burn it. He's right of course.Your post is SOO true.Sam
Oh Sam, I wish you would destroy the recordings. Why do you keep them?That "thing" (that monster) that pulled me in and made me seek out hurtful information got out of control in the beginning. It's so strange, I knew it was going to hurt me, but I did it anyway. I think I was so numb that I every now and then I had to take a peek into that dark sad place to make sure that I could still feel something. The racing heart, the pounding in my head, and...... that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. "Yep. I can still feel that. I am still alive."That's what happened to me whenever I would go online to where "she" posted her hateful messages to us in hopes that we would see them. I haven't been there in weeks because I finally understand that I can't keep inviting her to hurt me. That draw was almost like an addiction for me, it was a constant battle to stop seeking hurtful information.I sure do wish you would destroy the recordings.It's like inviting evil into your home. Why do we do it?
If you haven't already, I recommend reading Elle's blog post about pain shopping. I didn't realize that's what I was doing until I read it. I'm not going to say I've never done it since, but it has stopped me from doing it a lot. I remember I had the urge to pick at my scabs to see if it still hurt. Well duh, of course it does. I felt that if there were times I could pick at my emotional wounds and it doesn't hurt anymore, then that means I'm "over it". But now I realize there's no such thing. There's just coming to terms with it, processing it, and moving past it. Even when I'm no longer triggered by every single thing, I can still work myself up into a good miserable place of despair if I start pain shopping again.Lots of love and hugs. You aren't alone.
Sam delete them this very second, please don't do this to yourself you've been through enough hurt and pain let it stop today, let go and move forward with honesty. I'm soooo glad I deleted everything I had that would cause me grief on d day because I know I would probably be doing what your doing Sam. Your worth so much more than this if you only do one thing today, delete them. Lots of love ladies xxxxx
My therapist would often say to me when I would tell him I read the letter from the OW or looked at pictures that he wanted me to STOP hurting myself. Good advice. As Elle said, we shop for pain. Whether it's to help keep the walls up or simply to feel anger the only person it hurts is you.
WTF? Three days ago I posted above and told Sam to stop hurting herself. So, what did I do next? Tonight I dove right back into this crazy "f" ed up topic and asked my husband ONE MORE TIME if this was the only time he ever cheated.... because his first one thousand answers weren't enough. What possesses me to stir the shit up again? It hurts both of us when I do it. We were cruising along doing great and bam, I crashed.I am assuming that it's due to recent decisions I have made. Last week I applied for and received a job offer for a full time position. I accepted it because my current boss is a selfish, self-centered ass. I'm glad to get away from him since on dday he told me "this happens all the time," and that my standards are unreasonably high. Giving him my two weeks notice satisfied my need for revenge. And, dday came in the form of a phone call while at work, so removing myself from this environment also seemed like a positive step forward.But, now, I find myself trying to wrap up client files, bookkeeping, create training guides for my replacement and get my head around working full-time for the first time in 12 years. My current boss wants me to continue working for him in my spare time! What spare time? Suddenly, I'm scared and I don't know why I did this. I was so looking forward to a wonderful summer with my husband and working part time would have given us so much time together! I swear I think I sabotage myself sometimes. What a recipe....1 recovering betrayed spouse + anxiety + pressure= attack husband who is trying to everything possible to save me from myself.UGH! I am so disappointed in myself right now. I treated my husband horribly tonight.
Random,THAT is an important connection to make re. your anxiety and your tendency to stir things up.I think your problem might not be as dire as you suspect. Getting out of that environment sounds like it could be a good thing. A full-time job might also give you the distraction from all this that's a good thing, at least in the short term. And perhaps you can negotiate flex hours or reduced hours, or job-sharing once you show them how fabulous you are. I often tell my kids to try not to stress the decisions in life that are "un-do-able". Ie. you can buy a house but you can also sell a house; you can take a job but you can also quite a job. There are consequences absolutely but they're not life and death. The only decisions you absolute can't un-do is creating a life and taking a life. Take a deep breath, Random. And walk into your future with the notion that you're going to just see how this works out. I suspect it will work out better than you think.
Elle, I know you are right. What I left out, what I'm really afraid of, is this: if I'm working fulltime days and he's working full time nights what happens if he falls again? I'm 99% sure he won't but..... Its amazing how destructive that 1% doubt can be when it pertains to a negative possibility. I'd be lying if I didn't say that I'm a little worried about him getting lost again, though nothing he has done or said leads me to believe he will, its just a little seed that will always be there just below everything else. I have tried everything to dig it out, to cut it out, but it holds on. I now believe its there so that I won't ever be that naive again. I think its there to protect me. No one should ever feel completely safe.But, you will be happy to know that I know (thanks to you) that it is not my job to worry about or try to control his actions. Ultimately, I can only control mine. So with that in mind, I move forward.Thank you, again..... Geesh, I feel like I should be sending you a check.
RT,Hold that thought! Planning on adding a PayPal button so that people can, in fact, donate whatever amount they want to so that I can continue to take time from the job that puts food on the table to focus on this site. Stay tuned!And yes, I'm glad you recognize that you can't control him. Just beware that old habits die hard (I speak from experience). When you're anxious, that desire to control will come on strong.You're also right re. that niggling doubt. We can't un-know what we know about infidelity. Our husbands are capable of it (so are many who are never found out, or simply haven't yet had opportunity) but that doesn't mean they'll do it. It's on both partners to remain open and talk about things. To ensure that when we begin telling ourselves stories ("she doesn't appreciate me", "it's all about her...", blah blah blah) to recognize that makes us vulnerable to the attentions of someone outside the marriage. Forewarned is forearmed.
Random,I have done this one too many times. I always feel so defeated after i have once again asked the same question i had the answer to a million times ago. I already know the answer... but some rage or depression or simple mind games make me ask just once more to make sure. How horribly can you (me) treat yourself (myself) by shopping when the answer is already known?! It causes strain on an already fragile relationship, like dredging up the past for no good reason. I feel horrible not only for myself because i had to ask again, but to my husband, who admittingly made a bad choice that could have ruined everything. Especially since my husband has done everything right since d day.Maybe its in our DNA. There will always be a seed of doubt. But, we did not plant that seed, our husbands did. They watered it and made it flourish... behind our backs... so i wonder, and i think i always will. Even when things are "great."Xo
I'm about 2 months past my d day part 2...I have gone back and forth about wanting to see text messages. My husband deleted everything immediately throughout his 2 month affair. I know there are ways to recover text (iMessage) but I haven't done it yet. I don't think he would "let" me. I'd have to do it while he sleeps or something. I totally obsess over things and the wanting to know is driving me crazy! I want to know who said what etc. what's holding me back is knowing that once I see it I can't unknow it...so advice anyone? Would it help me to know so I can stop wondering? Or would it just make me feel worse? I have a pretty vivid imaginations and feel like maybe I imagine worse than what's true...
Overwhelmed,I vote for NOT looking. You're right...you can't unsee. That said, my husband answered everything I asked (positions, etc.) and I've forgotten most of what he said. It's enough to know he cheated. The rest is pain shopping.However, I think you need to take note of who's controlling your healing. HE should not be the one determining what you do and do not know. That's up to you. I wonder if he would "let" you, if the desire to see it might not seem so strong. The old "forbidden fruit" thing. The more he hides it, the more it seems like you must know.Are you in counselling? Have you read much on how to rebuild a marriage. Pretty much all infidelity "experts" (ie. psychologists/counsellors who have written books about how to heal) maintain that there must be full disclosure and that you get to decide how things roll out going forward. He needs to have total transparency and you need to have access to any/all devices. That is how trust is rebuilt. By your ability to check in when you want to...and discover that there's nothing to discover. Slowly, over time, you're able to trust him again.As Steam so beautifully put it in one of her posts, "My heartbreak, my rules."
He has answered all my questions so far except the ones with "I don't know"s. I don't consider that an answer. I finally stopped asking questions because he would tell me things that answered my question but crushed me even more though I didn't think it was possible. He has said several times "I don't know how knowing this could possibly help you" but he answers. He has let me look at his phone but I really don't think it matters because he covered his tracks throughout the 2 month affair and the 1 month between dday part one and dday part 2. I know he'll delete anything he doesn't want me to see immediately. I haven't asked if he'd let me try to retrieve deleted messages but I've casually mentioned a few times that I'd like to. He doesn't respond. I don't think he'd want me too because I think he'd be very embarrassed and I think he thinks I'd probably leave him for sure if I could see their conversations. Just a few things he's told me when I asked have made me want to puke. We just started counseling last week. He felt better after. I felt worse.
Overwhelmed,I'm so so sorry for all you're going through. What do you think you'd gain from knowing what was in the e-mails? Do you think he's minimizing his involvement? Do you think it went on longer than he's saying? I think it's important to recognize whether or not you're "pain shopping" or whether you still have questions that you really need answered.But that's something to talk about with your therapist. At a certain point, if you do want to rebuild the marriage, you have to let go of the details (knowing that he cheated is the main thing) and work on rebuilding. But that's always a choice. Walking away is a choice too.
I think there are several reasons I want to know. I feel so stupid for not being suspicious. So, what did I miss? What was I doing while he was texting her? What did she say that fed his ego and made him willing to throw away 15 years of marraige and his reputation. What did he say to her? The few conversations/comments he has divulged I've been unpleasantly surprised by what was said. I'm just still in shock that he could even do this. I guess I just want to see the level of involvement. I know he told her he loved her though he says e didn't act actually love her (duh! It was 2 damn months!) that was the text he got caught with-by our 11 year old son! He says se said it first and he avoided it for awhile...I wonder if that's true and how long is awhile...we're talking about 2 months here. I wonder if it was before or after the one time they met for sex. I wonder what the planning of that event looked like. She sent him pictures. He says he didn't send her any inappropriate ones. I wonder f that's true. I I just don't know what I can believe and I guess I think if I could see it I wouldn't have to depend on him. By the way, dday part 2 for me was finding out from HER via a Facebook message that they had met and slept together. This is something I had specifically asked him about which he lied about until she told me. I just don't know what to believe anymore and I want to be in control of the information available instead of him knowing something I don't know.
First off Elle--THANK YOU for drawing attention to the PayPal link. I have spent MORE TIME HERE than I have in therapy and I think for me, without it therapy would have gone on MUCH longer and been MUCH harder. Donation made.!Overwhelmed--I COMPLETLY understand wanting to know what was in the texts. My H's main whore (literally--whore) didn't have a phone so there were non of hers to see, but there were others. I never saw the texts--I saw plenty of e-mails. You can still check to see if he's lying by verifying what is on the phone bill (unless he was using an app) I was FLOORED to see that my H was carrying on for a full year, trying to get something going via text to numerous people. Just check your phone bills. I still do despite have a great relationship now. Any number I don't know? I ask now, but I googled then. "Trust but verify" is a wonderful rule, although your H is not giving you much to trust. In the early days snooping can be overwhelming, but so is the need to know the full picture....as much as you can handle. If he is being as ass in his answers though, what does that say about him? It is possibly to be truthful without destroying someone... In turn though, I never asked questions that I did not want an answer to. I did not and don't care if she was younger, prettier, more adventurous (ha, not possible) short, tall, whatever--what mattered to ME was that he did it, he lied, he pretended I did not exist. He whipped up unbelievable scenarios to these women that made me shake my head and even laugh--he offered cross country trips, he made up a new occupation--he was so EXCITING in those e-mails. He way lying to everyone. BUT if you need to know more, he has got to come clean and I have personally, NO problem with you demanding his phone. Your heartbreak baby, your rules.
For the most part, he is pretty forthcoming when he answers my questions. Some of the responses were not what I expected and not in a good way. Obviously, the big thing is he had a fucking affair! But I'm a detail person by nature, and some of the details have just rocked me to my core. When I first found out he was talking to her, I stayed up all night on HIS Facebook account (that's where they "met") pouring over every female friend I didn't know. There weren't many. It didn't take me long to figure out which one was her. So I know exactly what he looks like. I didn't ask a lot of questions at first. I was so relieved to have found out "before things went too far" that I just tried to move past it. I didn't know until a month later that I had been lied to by him about them meeting in person an spending a night together. I got that through a FB message from her. After that, he's "come clean" about everything and swears there is no more but how can I ever believe that? Before part 2, I was hurt, but didn't feel SO betrayed. Obviously it was a betrayal for him to even have a phone/text/FB "relationship" with someone else, but I knew we weren't happy. So it wasn't unbelievable to me. Meeting and having sex, that part is hard and especially because there were so many lies involved especially after I knew about the girl and was told I knew everything and lied to when I specifically asked twice. That was a couple months ago now. And I do believe it's over and that I know the whole big picture but I'm still stuck on some of the details. I stopped asking a lot of questions because I decided I couldn't handle the answers. But that has caused me to really withdraw and spend way too much time in my own imagination. I feel like it's a no win. How can I ever get past this? I just don't know.
Overwhelmed,Do you journal? I think you need to find an outlet for all those questions and feelings...but without creating more distance between you and your husband. What I used to do (I'm also a "detail" person) was make a mental list (you could write it down too) of the questions I wanted answered. And then I'd make myself wait 24 hours. If I still wanted to know, I'd ask. More often, however, I wouldn't even remember the question that I'd HAD to know the day before. Giving myself the 24 hours satisfied my "need" to know...but gave me some distance from my own feelings of desperation to decide if I really "needed" to know. Sorry if that doesn't make sense. I'm rambling, I think.Of course, you can always post here too. Write down your questions and let us weigh in on what's to be gained and what's to be lost by asking them. Crowd-source them. :)
You can and you will. Keep sharing here it is helpful to get it out. My betrayal? I felt the same. The lies were almost as painful as the affair. Horrible feeling I had every email between my h and his main whore and deleted them. I did not trust myself with her email address for one and did not need to know the lies he told her. He was a lying fool and really nothing he said meant anything but that did not make it easier. Just don't withdraw. That makes it so easy to drift apart And don't do that unless you want to be apart. You can decide that later You will make it through. Not easy but we're strong as hell or would not be here