The kickass survival site for anyone who's ever been lied to, cheated on and left for dead.
it's been a year and a half and I still hurt so bad. maybe because ours was a 45 year marriage. I haven't told my story yet but plan to.
I am awaiting this pain to pass. It has been 10 months and 2 days since "dday"... I am feeling super bitter lately. Reading this blog does help more often than not but is it just me or does sometimes it feels like we are constantly making excuses for our cheating husbands? oh he has been under a lot of stress, etc etc. I am by no means perfect, I am very temperamental etc but I am so loyal and faithful to my husband to my family, that apparently it wasn't enough. And seeing all of the women this happens to, are we all just doomed to think we can live in a marriage faithfully?? Its depressing as hell. I have never been so blindsided and hurt from my husbands emotional affair. yet I can't get past it. I feel like I never got closure from it. I had to bottle everything up because the kids were always present, it was around christmas etc... and now. now its been almost a year and I made the decision to "work" on our marriage. But I am so stuck at the moment. not moving forward. I feel like I instantly fell out of love with my husband. And even though for the most part, he is doing everything "right" it still doesn't feel like enough. How many times do I have to communicate with him that I want to "fall in love" with him again? I want him to prove to me that I am worth fighting for. I just don't feel like its enough...
It is so hard. Honestly you are still somewhat early. For me at least I feel like there are highs and lows and almost a roller coaster feeling. We are over 2 1/2 years past and there are moments that are not great. The one year anniversary dday was good for me. I felt really strong. That year after was hard since it felt like we were settling back into our old routine which makes me nervous. I have learned it is important to speak up. We have really worked on our communication. I have told my husband that my expectations from him and for us continue to elevate. What I was okay with before and even after dday is not acceptable now. And at this point I am not even talking affairs or other women. I have said to him after going through this I want the best life and marriage for me. And it might be uncomfortable some of the discussions. We say no to many things outside of work, kids and couples. That was not the case before. We both did a lot on our own or with our friends. But now we focus on us and do not over schedule. When we are more busy it is more stressful for both of us. If you need to still talk about and have questions then bring it up. For us we set one time a week to talk. That way we could schedule it when the kids were not home. Then we were both prepared. He did not feel attacked or bombarded and I felt heard. It worked really well for a long time. Then in turned more into marriage conversations and how to improve the quality of our relationship. It has been said a lot on here I cannot control what my husband will do in the future I can only control me. I have put boundaries and expectations in place, done the work to heal and continue that still to this day. We have worked really hard together and that has helped us. Everything is not perfect and we both have down moments but it is more good than bad. I still doubt things and I think that is normal. But I focus on the future. Give yourself time but also take steps to help yourself feel in a better place.
Hopeful 30, I really need to work harder on my communication. I find that I hold onto thoughts big and small and wait for the "right" moment and then we end up talking about something about him about work or stress blah blah blah and I get pissy and then blow up and throw it in his face. I just can't seem to help it. I really want to go to counseling but we are barely making ends meet as it is and the only free person would be our pastor and although H went to him a few times on his own accord, I just can't bring myself to do that. Things just seem like they are getting harder and not easier. I have read it can take upwards of 2 years to heal from a betrayal and I have told that to H and he "agrees" but thinks I am just sabotaging anything getting better by throwing everything in his face whenever we are having issues or an argument. I find that I can't deal with him pointing ANYTHING out to me that I am doing wrong (for example it could be something as little as snapping at him for no reason). It literally makes me seethe with anger. I know this is unhealthy. I just have so much resentment built up inside me not just from the emotional affair and that he pursued HER, but from the past 18 yrs of our lives together. ME putting him up on a pedestal trying to kill myself to make him and everyone else happy while leaving myself dead last... Is it so wrong that I expect him to go above and beyond now? Its not like he hasn't changed in a lot of ways but I just feel like he going the easy route. Let me be pissy once in awhile. Who cares if it hurts your feelings.. LOL (I know not healthy)...
Twins Twice, we are on a similar timeline and I feel very similar. H & I both committed to working on it and he has kept most of the commitments to MC/IC, etc. But I don't feel in love with him. I'm coming up on 11 mos from Dday #3 of a PA (dday's 1 was inappropriate emails and dday #2 was an Ashley Madison account). I think the questions you and I have about feeling 'in love' are ones for us to have with our IC. Problem is mine keeps saying 'don't stay together for the kids'. And I would agree with her if all we did was bicker, but we don't fight. H acts like he truly loves me and I do my best 'fake it till you make it' with him. I do however feel that I have come a long way with how much I love myself. That took time and my decision to never be his enabler or co-dependent or be gaslight, etc. I hope we can all be happy and find love again. Love ourselves first and it will (or won't) come in time with our H's.
It is so hard and for me at least it feels like this has been forced. We have been together 25+ years and married almost that long. I still struggle with the past BEG since for so long I believed what he was telling me that everything I brought up or wanted to work on was all my fault. It was my fault I did not like the town we lived in not the fact that he drank too much and only went out with his friends. Instead why don't I make friends. What was interesting was then I found friends and volunteer work I was passionate about but he would criticize me for that. At the time I was overwhelmed and I continued to bring these issues up. I gave up my career, future education and so much more I cannot get back now. I carry a lot of resentment about this. So for me it goes way beyond the affairs even though I know they are connected to all of this. He struggles since he feels bad and cannot go back and fix that either. He is super into focusing on today and the future. I do agree with that in some ways. But everything is a reminder. Him telling me his cousin is pregnant makes me sad since he started cheating on me when I was pregnant. And her wedding was the first wedding we went to months after dday. And he admitted to me that basically at every wedding he just ignored all the vows and everything since it would make him have to look at himself. This is all just so hard. And then he says everything right and I wonder how does he do this. Honestly how can you go from having two 10 year affairs at the same time, multiple women on social media, hitting on women everywhere to now being the sweetest more dedicated husband. He is far from perfect but how he treats me, treats himself and how he expresses his feelings is night and day. I told my therapist many times I thought he was tricking me and acting. I worry due to his profession. My therapist thinks there is zero chance of this. My therapist said there is no way to pull this off for 2 1/2 years. If he was my husband would either be a sociopath or should go to hollywood and be an actor.My only advice is to speak up. I have learned the longer I keep things in the worse I feel. The more stress I am under in any aspect of my life the worse it is. I really put it on the line and told him after what he did that he needed to just listen to me when I talked and that is what I need. I need him to hear me. In the past he always wants to fix it or tell me how it is. Well now I need it my way. And I told him he needed to not be defensive. I am careful not to be attacking or overly emotional. We have both worked hard on this. I am still frustrated since I am the one to bring things up if there is an issue between us. He never does. He almost always agrees with me he just does not think about it. He does say he is so happy and never thought he would have a second chance. He thought he had ruined anything we had and he could not be happier than he is now. Granted he says knowing I am still in pain is really hard since he was the one that caused all of it. Twins twice have you read the magazine article Masterd of Love in the Atlantic? My husband brought it home for me in the early weeks and it helped a lot. He is not into reading books but magazine articles are good. This one really inspired him and is by John Gottman. It is a good one. Maybe try that. Even that Harper Bazar article that came out last week about women nagging was a great jumping off point for us to have a good talk.
Twins twice, everything you say rings a bell and I am more than three years out! I don't want that to be disheartening for you. We had a lot of issues in our marriage already that had turned off feelings for him and to be honest it was all complicated anyway by me never feeling i had the right feelings for him and him feeling he was the pursuer when in fact so many of his actions and stonewalling were the opposite of love and connection. My experience was an emotional affair and it just brings up every insecurity. In every marriage there are often things you accept to keep the piece or ways you feel you've compromised yourself and all that comes back when you see their entitled actions. Many reparation attempts (ours included) are patchy and poor. My husband just did not get it for ages, even after he went back talking to her behind my back (as friends), he argued about things I asked for that would help, he recently deceived me about something else and did not support me once more in a trigger situation. So much defensiveness. Something seemed to change just recently when I said he needed to turn it around, show care and proper compassion, look at his defensiveness etc at the very least to help himself. I said his actions were hurting me and making him feel awful about himself. He has been so kind in the last couple of weeks, a real effort, addressing triggers, being considerate, a different mindset. But, I can understand how you feel switched off, it’s taken my husband this long to rectify the awful reality of him acting as if I was nothing, didn’t exist, but at the same time vilifying me and sharing my ‘faults’ with the OW. So hard to love after that, even without the relationship troubles. It will take you a long time to rebalance after that. I think the spouse needs to pour love and consideration into the hole they have made. You are bringing up issues and thoughts because you don’t feel he is taking them into account, you are revisiting the horror because at 10 months it really is not okay yet. Like you I found the loyalty issue very hard to get over, I don't think I ever really will. I found Stosney’s Living and Loving after Betrayal great for rewiring triggers and sadness and helping myself feel better but for you to ‘love’ again your husband must put in the effort.
Like you I am pretty far out over 2 1/2 years and some days are harder than others. I try to tell myself to breathe and relax sometimes. And as I remember Elle saying early on not to make any big decisions. Focus on today. And if I am feeling something I speak up. We have a pretty good dialogue which helps. Even this weekend and yesterday I was struggling with my internal thoughts. He was so sweet when I came to bed late. Here I was feeling so down for now specific reason. And today he called me two times since he said he could not stop himself. He was going to listen to a favorite radio show but said he would rather talk to me. Then I thought to myself I can feel down but give it time. I know one of my biggest struggles is when we are busy since it reminds me of before dday. But it is different now and I have to remind myself. But I also acknowledge I am still dealing with the pain and all the left over emotions connected to his betrayal. Hard to believe it goes on for so long but this is some major stuff.
Oh I hope this is true and soon! I just want things to be normal again for me and my h to be happy again ,enjoy each other's company to love each other.He was gone a couple weeks ago to an event where the w**** wasn't and on my day off he drove 8 hours home on a Thursday to pick me up and take me back 8 hours to where he was. I thought that was nice of him. And Surely if he didn't love me and care about me he wouldn't have done that. Or so at least that's what I tell myself. All of his friends up there were glad to see me and went on about what a lucky man he was to have a wife like me. Hahaha..Well my husband has always told me that he was lucky to have me and I always just told him he was crazy. I always thought I was the lucky one he always treated me like a queen I just don't understand how and why he could text this the other woman so easily. I just hope the whore stays away
I thank the universe that pain is temporary. I have more good days than bad and I am grateful. I'm still tired as hell though. Got hit with a trigger yesterday and I didn't spend any time in bed...a first for me. On the contrary, I spent my day crocheting, speaking my truth to my H, then making hair and nail appointments. While triggers are painful as hell, they are coming from a place of great discomfort from the past. It was nice to spend 12 hours in that place instead of 3 days. I'm making progress and I'm so incredibly grateful. Love to you all
If I had a dime for every single time I've said this out loud or thought it, I'd be rich.
D Day was exactly 3 years ago...it seems so long ago and yet again as if it were yesterday. But it is true that pain finally passes. It kind of fades away. There are so many conditions though...both of us REALLY worked hard, without therapy we wouldn't have made it. And this site made a difference for me too.I've been here since my D Day but today is my first post: Thank you Elle...you have saved so many of us.You have certainly saved me.
If i had a penny... me too I'd be rich. Attitude is half the battle even on our not so good days a little lip gloss and pretty toes do wonders. It's true it won't ever be gone but this too shall pass I can say 29mo out while I'm still dealing with the wreckage I don't feel I'm standing knee deep in a shit storm of repair and hurt. We are a work in progress but I'm loving again. Smiling damn even enjoying myself much of the time I noticed recently I'm having events activities or a span of many hours or days that her I didn't even think of that today. But yes it's still there just not front and center. Im making alot of changes keeping on my self care and trying to put best efforts forth to my marriage. Happy Friday eve warriors!
The bitterness, extreme anger, extreme depression have passed. My ability to contol triggers has improved. My foul language about that whore hasn't improved. And like Beach Girl, I would be rich too if I had a dime for every time I thought or said it! Except I would be Mountain Girl because I prefer cooler weather!
I feel as if I have to work in this alone. My reaction pisses him off so he has disappeared. Won’t answer me or respond to calls or texts. I have no choice but to heal on my own. I don’t know how to do that. Any advice would be so welcome.
Timbbey, you will read here that so many spouses don't have the maturity and compassion to face what they have done and just blank or stonewall others. If he is refusing to respond then you need to focus on yourself and don't try to contact him any further. Draw on all the supports you can, a kind friend or family member, perhaps counselling or EMDR to help you face the pain and triggers. I found Steven Stosny's book Living and Loving After Betrayal helpful to build myself up. Keep sharing more of your story here so we can support you. If he does not come round to facing what he has done plan to have the best possible life of your own, look into your finances, take care of yourself, do the things you love and put the focus on yourself rather than him. Celebrate your own strengths and abilities and realise that he is destroying himself with his defensiveness (my husband is beginning to realise this now, 3 years on.) You are valuable and if you connect with others, do all the things you enjoy and turn out to also support and help others it will help you realise what a strong and great person you are, one your husband should have valued.
Timbbey, although H won't respond, you do not have to heal alone. We BWC are here for you. Check out the Infidelity Counseling Network and apply for a peer counselor. Definitely make an apt to go see an IC. Talk to an attorney even if it's just for the one free consultation to understand your rights. If you are a person of faith talk to a priest, rabbi, pastor, etc. Go to your Gyn and get tested for peace of mind. All of these professionals have to keep things confidential. There are lots of good books and other resources. This takes time. But we need to have the support of others. I hope your H quickly realizes what a bad decision he made and starts doing the hard work with you and on himself. Either way, I don't want you to feel like you are alone.
Timbbey. I agree with what Fragments of Hope and browneyedgirl have said, you are not alone. I do get how you feel. We all do in one way or another. I had my best friend and my therapist and still felt alone but I think that is part of this process. We have been betrayed by our best friend and the one person we trusted completely. Top that with our realities being completely changed without our doing, and you just feel lost. There is hope though. Even if you don't see it right now. Look within for love and comfort. Get any support that you can and start working on healing yourself. It is a lonely road to start with, but once you see yourself and all that you are capable of doing for you, you will start to feel stronger and the cycle of self love starts. We are all here for you going through our own journey of healing and reinvention. YOU are not alone. Sending comforting hugs to you...♥
This too shall pass, this hit me so hard this past 20 months have been so challenging. Sigh… 20 months ago I found out about my husbands fucking affair with a prostitute, then a year later I find out my son has an addiction to opioids he went into an outpatient center then he had a horrible relapse 6 months after rehab. I sat with him and just listened to his darkside it was the worst day of my life realizing I may lose my son, he no longer wanted to live. He checked himself into a inpatient faculty, he was diagnosed with major depression he just finished his 30 days and he's continuing on with a sober living center. I can only hope he will find peace in his life. Then are family dog who I loved so much and who took care of me when I found out my husband was having an affair was diagnosed with lymphoma and we had to put him down 4 weeks later. I ask everyday when will this pass! When will this pass!
I am so sorry for you and can really empathise. Alongside finding out about my husband's emotional affair and depression, my son had mental health problems, was suicidal at one point and was out of school for two years, my husband's company was also sued and a couple of years my husband's lovely mother was utterly changed and debilitated by a severe stroke. All you can do is try to get through these awful times. It sounds as if you have been so strong for your son while knowing that some of it is down to him. It's time for you to do everything that uplifts you, soothes you, makes your life easier. If you are like me you will be at a heightened state of anxiety and just stressed out, too many trials at one time. I'm so sorry about your dog too. I try to find the small things in nature etc that I love that keep me going, I hope you can find ways to build yourself up and give yourself the care you are giving everyone else, find friends or community to support you.
Starting to feel this coming true....My 2 year DDay anniversary is this Halloween. Last month we almost called it quits. We hit rock bottom. For him it was the feeling of defeat that nothing he had done over the last 2 years was making a difference in my heart. For me it was the feeling that I was never going to get better nor be able to release my resentment. We had just exhausted all that we had. We “went our separate ways” per say within our home and personal lives, still pretending to the outside world that all was OK. Then something just changed. I had a few sessions of EMDR (life saving!) that started to brighten my outlook on life in general. I started feeling more alive again, more willing to open my heart. More willing to take another chance. He was also doing his own counseling as well dealing with his feelings of failure and shame and unrealistic expectations. Then one night we decided to go out and go dancing. We had our first genuinely happy, fun, bonding time since DDay. No faking. The next morning we both felt renewed, willing to keep trying. That night gave us the hope that the old us is still in there. The”us” we were when we fell in love. It was a night that gave me hope that “ This too shall pass”.
FLAG, thank you for your post. I've had a few of those days myself and each one brings us closer together. Such a nice thing to experience, you know, HOPE! My husband feels terrible remorse, shame, guilt and resolve to never be "that guy" again and although it is the hardest thing I've ever done, I'm trusting the process of living life with an open heart and believing that "this too shall pass".
Couldn’t agree with you more BG. Their remorse and moments of hope and happiness are the gifts from God that keep us going. I also attribute big steps in improvement for my inner self to a few tools I have discovered. 1. EMDR (Elle speak of this often). Finally found someone trained in this and it was amazing! 2. The same counselor who does the EMDR also taught me about “tapping” just yesterday. It’s another desensitizing technique that is almost eerie how it works. 3. The book Love is Letting Go of Fear. Wish I would have read it 2 years ago! These few tools have helped me climb over several road blocks i couldn’t get past, and were keeping me from seeing joy in the world or healing.
Just wondering how those of you who are making progress rebuilding your marriage have handled your husband's relationship with your friends and family that know of the betrayal?
Anonymous October 16, I only have 1 friend (and her mom) who knows and H doesn't know that they know the full story. He does know that they know we are having marriage problems because they watched our kids when we went on a retreat a few mos after Dday. I am very luck they treat him the same as usual. I think they see the better person he has become. They are ahead of me in that regard. I also have a professional friend who knows and she went through the same thing several years ago. She told her college friends and they had the opposite reaction -- they won't be in same room with her H and it's been years. I think that's why it's so important to be very picky with who you tell.
Hi Anonymous. I think every situation and every relationship is handled differently. My husband was the one who told my parents what he did. And all of my friends were the ones encouraging me to work things out. I can tell you, for me I felt those were messages from God because I wasn’t one that would ever give a second chance (to something such as this). So, I chose to listen and take in what my friends were saying. But I do know my situation is not the norm. Even my own parents were trying to help us rebuild and stay together. Honestly, I can say they are all why we are still together nearing our 2 year DDay. You have to weigh out your own personal situation and his relationship with your side of family and friends.
Anon, I only told 3 people all of the details (close friends/coworkers) and my sister a tiny bit, and a cousin somewhere in between all of it and a little bit. And he told our pastor most of what he had done. I didn't want to tell anyone that I felt would be at all judgemental either for or against reconcilliation.. I didn't know what my ultimate choice would be, whether I would stay or kick him out (I stayed) and didn't want my overprotective family/friends to make things more difficult. I am honest with those that know of the good the bad and the ugly and they have been nothing but understanding and supportive. Are your fam/friends supportive of you? If they are, then I would say you could be honest but if they aren't, then I would be very selective on what you say to them because they can't "unhear" what you tell them.
I need help. My dday is recent, 29 days ago...to be exact. I just found this site. And to see the length of time you have all had to feel like this...how did you do It? My husband had multiple affairs, physical and emotional....it started when I was pregnant with our first child, continued on into when I was pregnant with our second. There was 10 months (As far as I know) of him being faithful before I found all of this out last month. All day every day, I agonize over all of it. Why? How? I mean, how could he do this to me, I gave him everything and I always have. Every night when I close my eyes, I see nothing but his hands and body against other women (I've seen all of them and actually knew one of them). I can't sleep, I can't eat, I literally can't think about anything but all the details of what he did and the so many questions that just replay over and over and over in my head. How could he do this to me? What could i have done different? Did he make love to them like he makes love to me? Did he tell them how beautiful and special they were? And how could he live with this, how could he not tell me and let me find out like this? The questions are too many to be counted, and I know you all have to know that. The good thing is, my husband was only defensive for about the first week or so, which resulted in things I won't say but they weren't pretty. And I don't feel guilty. Because he had that coming. I've been cheated on before, but in my mind and heart, I KNEW that the man I was marrying just couldn't do that to me. Faithfulness is the ONLY thing I truly, so deeply care about, the ONLY thing I expected from him because I've wanted it my whole life and I have gone beyond giving him that, if you knew all I had done for him, and the depth of what he has done to me, I honestly believe that nine out of ten of you would tell me to leave him, it's that bad, it's that tremendous. And everyone's pain is that bad and that tremendous, I know, but it went beyond just the affairs here. I don't want to go into it all because I don't want to bash my husband. I want help. How in the world were you ever able to close your eyes and not see those things? What changed in you or in the situation or in him that made it to where you didn't have to be engulfed by this every single second of every single day and night? On the rare occasions that I do sleep, all I dream about is him cheating on me, him being horribly mean to me. I mean, is that how it is for all of you? And is the only real answer that it just takes time? Cuz if that's it, if there isn't any action I can take or he can take that will change any of that, if it just takes time, please tell me. But if any of you ever found ANYTHING that helped, please, PLEASE tell me. I am DESPERATE for just a few minutes of peace. I just can't believe how long it takes. I mean, I can, because this is by far the worst thing that's ever happened to me. I just feel like the last 29 days have completely exhausted me, like I have a hard time taking care of my children, I can't eat, I can't sleep, and honestly, if I didn't have my kids, I don't think I would ever get out of bed at all. I just need advice. Most of you are so much further than me. Please help me. And so you know, my husband says he is willing to do whatever it takes to repair this marriage and I told him I am willing to try. I haven't given him forever. I told him we try for the next thirty days. And if I feel there might be a chance to save this, I'll give him thirty more. But he said he wants to try. So please. ANYTHING that helped you early on, anything you did, anything your husband did that might have helped you. I'm willing to try anything.
Dear all love,I'm so sorry for the pain, shock, and sadness you are in. Please know that we are all virtually setting beside you, holding your hand, letting you know we believe you and will hear you anytime. Good for you to have the courage to reach out. Sorry you are joining this club nobody wants to be in. Dig around in the archives, there is a wealth of info and great advice. When I finally discovered this sight I wept and would read for hours. It was so helpful to know what I was feeling, fearing, and facing was 'normal'. My faith and this sight saved me! If you are able, cut out everything that is not an absolute necessity from your schedule. Let the grass dry up, only basic laundry needs done, let the phone ring, cry,cry,cry all you need to!! I remember watching sunrises like they were my sanity ('the sun always rises and is beautiful', was one of my chants). Also, the sound of the wind in the trees and the feel of it on my arms felt like life. I took up some seriously physically challenging activities and exceeded my expectations, shocked me as I was never accused of being athletic! It helped my stress tremendously. I'm not bragging, just would highly encourage you to move your body. You will make it through this nightmare, even though it feels impossible right now. The women here are compassionate and we have felt just as you describe. Feel free to post as you need to, no judgment here! Love and hugs.
Thank you so much for your response, anyone else that reads and can offer guidance, please do. But thank you so much for this. I will try it, I will. Cuz honestly, I haven't tried this yet. Thank you for offering me what you have, I'm so grateful. It's so helpful to hear from you, cuz it gives me some kind of weird peace to know that I am not alone when it feels like I must be.
All Love I'm so sorry for the pain you are feeling! I know it well! I'm almost 3 years past dday but I also struggle with triggers from time to time. I'm not going to lie to you, it took a long time for the mind movies to stop! I had them day and night. Then I found this blog and I began to use the stop sign at the end of the street to divert my attention back to present and I also used the rubber band to stop negative thoughts. Some days it worked and other days I just gave into the tears. Oceans of tears that first year! You do life one day at a time and for now you just do what you can manage and you allow it to be enough! I'm going to suggest that you concentrate on your children but that you also put your h in charge of their care from time to time. You get through this with his help because he is the one that caused the mess! I don't know how I could have handled this with small children but even with ours both adults it's been very difficult at times. Somehow we managed to get through year two planning for our daughters wedding and this year awaiting the birth of our first grand daughter. We're concentrating on our future but when necessary we go back into the past especially when I trigger. It just takes time and it's hard work for a good marriage and it's even harder after a betrayal but if you're both willing to work really hard you can get through and create a stronger relationship! Sending hugs!