The kickass survival site for anyone who's ever been lied to, cheated on and left for dead.
Again this is so me right now...I work hard every day to make sure I'm on top of school issues, our dog, the laundry, and every single thing that can't wait. At the end of the day I get a nervous breakdown I think from all the restraints I'm doing through out the day...I'm trying to make sure I get some (sad time) in between work items to make sure I don't get to that crazy mad angry stage at night...I over heard a phone call (Yes I was spying:( ) between my h and the coworker. The way they talked normal to each other sent me into a very angry place.. a very resentful place.. how can they start a phone call by saying good morning... so that's a greeting. So the two of you are greeting each other after 3.5 years of the crap you were pulling off..The sain part of my mind knows that that's normal. But for some reason I actually talked to my husband about it and told him when she says goid morning on the phone your proper response should be (yes). And not a good morning back to you... how crazy am I now. My problem isn't just that she's a normal enemy because she had the affair. But she actully called me on dday and told me that there were other women as well. And that the affair was 2 years longer than what my h told me..I don't believe her because the ow she named are actually my friends while I've known for years. And I know the affair was 3.5 years and not 5 years because my h proved to me the date she first came to office..So besides the affair she deliberately tried to make things worse..Other than that. I found out about the affair because she threatened to tell me about everything if he stopped seeing her.. she kept these threats going for months and then he finally said do what you want I want out!!!She came to our house and rang to tell me she's down stairs.. he confessed because he wanted to be the one to tell me.So she is an enemy for real. I told him yes you work with her. So talk work you really don't need a good morning how have you been in the beginning of a phone call... Silly right. But I've learned that right now if it passes me off then it's not silly. IT'S MY RIGHT TO FEEL WHAT I FEEL.(I'm typing really quick sorry for spelling mistakes)Anyway. Yes Elle I will rest and feel the pain and pass right through it.
Emma,Rest is not only recommended, it's crucial. You need to give yourself time and space to feel your feelings or, as you've noted, they'll come out in a torrent and you'll feel out of control. It must be horrible to have to listen to your husband carry on a "normal" conversation with this woman who, literally, tried to ruin your marriage. Is there absolutely no way your husband can transfer to another department? I'm surprised his workplace wants them anywhere near each other. Can't imagine it doesn't affect productivity.However, back to you. Do you meditate? Or do any sort of mindfulness? It can seem hokey but there's a whole lot of brain science that backs up how powerful it is in helping us manage our feelings and heal from pain. At the very least, take some time with sit with a tea or go for a walk or let yourself off the hook re. your daily "chores". God knows, you deserve it.
He works for her? She is guilty of sexual harassment. Why not turn her in?
They both work there. And the work place doesn't know. I would like to keep it this way because I don't want people looking at me strangely if I go to his office...And I don't to give her the chance to make things up because I found out she has a habit of doing that.I'm trying to dance when I here music and I'm trying to sing along to strange rap music that's too young for me. Hip hop helps :). And chocolate..Thanks Elle for always being there. And thanks anonymous:) huggs
Hi Emma, Yes, feel what you need to feel and give yourself the time and rest you need to do it because feeling pain can be hard and exhausting. Please be gentle with yourself and take care of the minimal basics for you and any children. Take a day or a week or more off from all the other chores, it's really ok not to do it all. I really struggled with "handling" everything and really I was avoiding some things I needed to face and feel. I am 2.5 years out now and I still do it some, but can recognize it and nudge myself to sit with feelings and facing things. But it was really hard in the beginning so please make time and space to give yourself love and want you need. Also, I I know the struggle of a H who works with the OW. It is super terrible and crazy making!!! I feel you sister. My H worked freelance and was going to continue just a professional relationship with the OW and it was absolutely nerve wracking and crazing making. In the early months I was willing to accept this and compromise my self respect IF there were very strict boundaries in place.... well it never really worked he would never respect the boundaries or me. Even when I kept making the boundaries more and more lax, he would still just ignore or side step them. I also kept asking for what felt like silly and pathetic things "say this, respond like that, only use formal language ect...". I felt so insane, but I was desperate for any symbol from him that he respected me and he could acknowledge my pain and would respond. All told I spent a year absolutely turning myself inside out, not respect myself, thinking I could hold it all together for him to return to our marriage. Finally, I started on a much more healing path where standing in my own integrity and respect is essential. I urge you to speak with your H about the work situation, can the office change things up so they don't work in the same group or on the same project? Offices have HR departments and personnel issues is something they deal with. Is he self employed? Can he adjust his own situation? In my experience The ongoing working together is almost impossible to deal with and creates a lot more pain and struggle. Remember that you and your needs are valid!!! Hang in there sister, we are all with you. You are not alone. Love and support Becky
Hi EmmaI also wanted to share that when I first shared my story here and my H and ow were still working together, I got a lot of feedback from sisters here that was hard to hear. And I thought hey these women don't really know me or my H and our situation..... and I was kinda blowing it off. Because it all hurt so much and I had the very scary feeling that these women were sharing with me valuable experience. But I kept coming to this site, sharing and seeing the light of others journeys and eventually I had more courage and more strength to be firm on boundaries and deal with countermoves. And to learn the beauty of my own story and not betraying myself. I'm still learning!! None of us get there overnight and I know the first few months can feel so long!! I felt like I had aged 10 years. Just take one day, one step, one breath at a time. And know that you are loved by me and all your sister here. Becky
Becky, Thanks for sharing your experience with Emma. It is SOOOO hard when there's continued contact, especially for working. My husband's OW was his associate and I was loco for the month or two that she continued in that role. She was being actively "removed" but it cost us a whole lotta money.Your point about boundaries is key. Trying to somehow turn yourself into a pretzel in order to accept them working together while still asserting yourself as his wife is crazy-making and, ultimately, fruitless.Each partner needs to consider him/herself part of a team. Every choice needs to come from that place that it's "us" and "we" and not "I' and "me". I'm not advocating for a lack of professionalism or him sending e-mails from the two of you -- simply that every interaction with this person needs to be run through a mental filter of "how does this impact my wife" and "how can I ensure that this keeps a professional distance", etc. And you, as you've learned, need to put clear NON-NEGOTIABLE boundaries in place of what you will and will not tolerate with clear consequences. Don't need to go straight to divorce but consequences that you will absolutely enforce if he violates your boundaries. Affairs happen because the cheating partner violates boundaries. It's that simple.
I have not been in that situation but I think as Becky said at first they tried to make it work. I found on many aspects of our relationship both affair and non affair related over the 2 1/2 years+ things have evolved. What was okay at 6 months was not okay at a year and even different now. Even besides the affairs in order for our marriage to be the quality we both want we are both constantly working on it. And I have said more than one time to my husband that my expectations have changed and/or elevated. For me when I found out he betrayed me it put everything in a whole new perspective. And if I am going to stay in this marriage then I want it to be worth it for me. I know I will live up to my end of the relationship and I know what I have to offer. And for my husband for a long time he was defensive if I brought up anything or made excuses. Nothing big but it got old and I felt like it was holding us back. I needed him to really think about what I was struggling with and I needed to be validated. Once he started listening more, being less defensive and validating me it was a big step. It did not mean everything was perfect or he never did anything that bothered me. But I feel like he really listens to me now. For my husband it took past one year for him to even start addressing his issues. He was so worried about me and just getting through each day. In the end I realized that this has been harder on him in many ways. What sticks with me is what he has continued to tell me since 1 year past dday. He strives to live each day as authentic as possible. Every word he speaks or writes and all of his behaviors he acts as if I am standing next to him. This took him a whole year to figure this out since he was unsure he could even be the person he knew he should be. Again I am not saying he or we are perfect but he said he goes to sleep every night knowing he has been a good person and has nothing to hide. Hang in there!
Emma, for you and others whose CH work with the AP.https://vickitidwellpalmer.com/affair-partner-co-worker/
I needed this advice so much today. Sometimes we go, go, go to distract ourselves from pain or to not have time to feel or just because we think its what we "should" be doing. (Losing "should" from my vocabulary is one of my most favorite post d-day lessons). Today I have so much going on and was feeling tired and overwhelmed, and not entirely well, I might add. So. I'm letting myself off the hook. I will skip spinning and do my cross training on a day when I feel more ready. Today maybe I'll just be gentle and do yoga and meditate and write to clear my head and take a rest.
I'm having a week like that myself. And I've learned (the hard way, which seems to be how I learn ALL my lessons), that the world will not stop spinning if I take a day (or two) to collect myself again. To just focus on what's in front of me and let the to-do list languish temporarily. I manage my anxiety by being super-organized, which gives me the illusion of control. But it is an illusion. All I control is how I'm acting right now. And I can act in a way that's nurturing myself.
Thanks for the reminder, Elle, that rest is okay, too! You reminded me of that last week when I sounded tired, and I can tell you - many times in this past week I have said your words to myself - reminding myself that it is okay to rest, to not always talk or have to try to find a solution to everything, to just live in the here and now for a bit. I will catch up. Rest is okay...I will catch up. Thank you!
Jules,When I was pregnant, I was complaining to a friend about how bloody TIRED I was all the time. I was so accustomed to doing a zillion things and having energy to spare. He looked at my incredulously and then he said something I've never forgotten: "You're building a baby, for chrissakes. Of course you're tired."I felt kinda stupid cause, yeah, I was building a baby. But I figured that was just happening on its own. Nature and all that.But I think of that often because, of course, there are all sorts of things going on in our bodies that we're totally unaware of. And, especially when we're healing from trauma, there's healing going on (or trying to go on) that we can't see. So it's crucial to rest. It's crucial to retrain your brain and heart to be kind to yourself. To stop being so relentless all the time. To stop DOING and just let yourself BE and understand that you're no less valuable for it.
I need so desperately for my brain to rest. The past two weeks have been difficult. A simple trigger around my husband's birthday came on the heels of recognizing that I haven't been taking care of myself. I let it spiral. I failed to follow my own advice and looked up the OW. I opened up the floodgates on the anger I STILL feel. It's been over 2 years. I'm still hanging onto the resentment I feel for never confronting her face to face. I'm playing over a scenario in my head where I show up at her house and tell her husband the whole disgusting story just to watch the horror and shame wash over her. I'm pissed at my husband all over again for ever bringing this nightmare into my life. I don't want to hear that he wasn't thinking clearly, I don't want to hear about his porn addiction at the time. I don't want to hear that he didn't enter into the affair to hurt me. I don't even want to hear him when he tells me he was a selfish asshole, even though it's true. The bottom line is that may be his truth, but my truth is that I was hurt by it all. Devastated. I want to rage. I want to cause the kind of hurt that I feel even now. Yet, I always stop myself. Have to think of the fallout. I suppose my conscience is greater than my anger. I wish my brain would rest.
Dandelion,I think you made the most important point right up top. You haven't been taking care of yourself. Give yourself some love. Be gentle.And then...give yourself the space to consider what might help put your mind at ease. Why is it too late to the let the husband know? Why can't you confront her? Why not, at least, write her a letter telling her exactly what you think of her? Why not, at least, write her husband a letter telling him exactly who he's married to. I wouldn't advise sending them. But write them. And then sit with that. See if you feel any lighter. Also...let yourself be angry. What your husband did was really really shitty. Even if he turns into the most amazing guy ever, what he did was shitty. There's no turning back the clock. And I sometimes think if we give ourselves permission to just be angry about it -- to not be pressuring ourselves to "forgive" or "most past" -- then the anger gets processed. We can purge it. That might give your brain some rest.
This is something I feel creeping up on me now from time to time. The need to let go and rest/take care of myself. If I don't do it, my emotions simply get all tangled up. Yesterday was a day like that for me. I had a very busy work day, got a flu shot (which always wipes me out), fit in a tough workout, did a TON of laundry to "catch up", and a million other things. When I finally settled down to get ready for bed, my H came home from work at that exact time and immediately started complaining about all the things that were broken (the internet and cable went out unexpectedly, a sprinkler head broke...). I lost it a little and said, "You are clearly not happy here in this house. I can't do a good enough job keeping things running apparently." Of course my H had not blamed me for any of these broken things... it was just my perception that somehow I was supposed to fix everything and do everything. I fought back the urge to say, "Maybe you should go find someone else who's better at making sure the cable works. It won't take you long I'm sure." Thank goodness I did not actually say that. I kept it from coming out of my mouth. That would have been hurtful, and he honestly didn't deserve this based on his just being irritated about things being broken. He was very nice to me. Apologized for being irritated. Reassured me that he did not consider these things my job (which I knew when I was in my right mind). I told him it is no crime to be irritated, and that I had been killing myself getting items done and was just upset that he came in not seeing any of that, just expressing irritation about what was not done. I decided the best thing for me to do was go to sleep and be done with that day. I felt much better and more clear when I woke up this morning. I had simply tried to cram too much in. Once I start checking off items off my list, it's somehow addicting for me. It leads me to believe that this is my role. To do everything. If I can just keep doing everything, everyone will be happy. So wrong. Does anyone else fight the urge to tell their husband to, "just go find someone better" when they're feeling defeated? I've not said it out loud, just fight the urge when I'm snippy and over tired. It's a sure sign to me that I need to rest and I've bitten off more than I should have. On a happy note, my H called me at work this morning already to offer to bring me lunch today. He's found ways to respond to me that help when I get in that mode, and I've found ways to communicate what's going on with me in a way that is not destructive (mostly). I don't like my burn-this-house-and-marriage-down emotional response that comes up sometimes when I'm not caring for myself. I can't be the only one who fights the urge to say such things even this late in the healing...
Ann,Sounds like your husband has found ways to be kinder to you than you have found ways to be kind to yourself. I think most women, even those who haven't been cheated on, sometimes get resentful and think their husband should just find someone "better". We take their dissatisfaction in all sorts of areas that are NOT our responsibility, as somehow our problem. I've had to practice saying to myself "this is not my problem. This is not my problem." I even learned to say out loud to my kids when they would complain to me (their juice in their lunch spilled, for instance. Or they can't find something) -- "h'mmm...sounds like a personal problem." In those words, I'm letting myself off the hook for fixing it and telling them that I trust them to be capable enough to solve it. Those messages we tell ourselves are insidious. And they're two-sided. On the one hand, we feel powerful when we think we control so much. On the other, we're doomed to fail at something or other, which makes us feel powerless and defeated. The truth, of course, is in the middle. We control ourselves. That's it. We do our best. That's it.
I have been forced to rest, relax, trust and pray. I live in Florida and left for Seattle on 9/2. Was supposed to come back 9/8, but with flight problems won't be home until 9/15. Before the hurricane hit, I offered to come home early, but he told me to stay so I would be safe. He took care of our house and my dogs. He told me he loved me, wanted me out of harm's way. This is the first time since DDAY I have felt secure with him. Am so thankful everyone is safe. I booked a room with Airbnb, became friends with my hostess, we shared stories and offered each other encouragement. I was able to finally rest in the midst of a storm back home. I took my rings off after DDay and told him I was ready to put them on again. I know there will still be problems, but I am actually looking forward to going home and living a life together.
Beagle Mom,Wow, out of the eye of the hurricane, you found emotional and physical safety. That's incredible. I'm glad you're safe though sorry you had to go through that. Maybe feeling somewhat threatened made him realize just what really matters in life.
Thanks for sharing. So much positive out of such a devastating event.
Thankfully there was minimal damage that we will be able to repair ourselves. No injuries and power was restored fairly quickly. We have fared better than many.
This is a good thread. I really find it hard to do nothing- especially when I'm in familiar surroundings, as there always seems to be some task to do.I would never be this hard on someone else. Why can I not allow myself to rest? I can't remember the last time I woke up in the morning feeling relaxed and not anxious about the day ahead.When I'm in the thick of the action, all is well, but I pay for that with frazzled energy at all other times. I give to my work (teaching), I give to my daughter (aged 2), but I find it so hard to give to myself.Just over a year since D-Day. Unlike many sisters here, I have not noted/ remembered the exact date (although the date my h first had sex with the ow is engraved onto my mind). He's now acting like it was no big deal. Something has got to give.
For me I find comfort in staying busy on the flip side of this. This is my nature. I have tried to shift it to things I enjoy most and tell my husband what I want him to do instead of wishing. I focus on time with my kids, working out, cooking meals and certain tasks around the house. Other things I might have done out of obligation in the past but now I make at least my busyness what makes me happy. And in the end I am most at peace when I am doing things that make me happy. Maybe it is bad I don't rest or sit and just think. And by being selective it helps some with my anxiety. I would say anxiety is my biggest personal issue at this time. I will get sad at times but I would not say depressed but I am anxious a lot. It comes from different parts of my life but I am less resilient than I was before dday. Maybe start but choosing what you want to focus your time on and make those your only priorities. If other things don't get done no big deal. And are you able to talk with your husband to open up about how you feel? I have worked really hard to tell him that it is how I feel and it might not be what he is doing but I know how I feel. Most of the time my husband did not see it the way I did and with some easy correction or effort he can find ways to support me.