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I agree that cheating no matter who does it is wrong. He didn't say they were engaged when this happened he said they lived together. That to me is different. It is different to me because they as far as we could tell hadn't promised anything to one another that's why the cheating came into play. It's like when I was dating I know I had more than one guy I was interested in from time to time. However we were only dating and to me they were just one step up from that. They were shacking. Shacking people are not always engaged and or not always faithful. We don't even know how long before or after they had gotten engaged this occured.

I think dating and being engaged is different. Engaging someone means you intend to marry them while dating you could either get to that point or realize that the person is not someone you want to spend your life with. Even if you are living with the person you are dating. ****** they have some people that move in together right after they start dating and I think that is just plain crazy because what do you really know about that person. I think maybe if I had more history on their sitch I might change me POV.


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Mel, go back to the beginning and read the whole thing.

For example:

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His 15 year old, 2 month affair was exposed well after she confessed to her 30 year old, 2 month affair


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Why are we not as equally concerned with the guy's affair 15 years ago in how that is painful for his wife?

I am not following you, Larry. We weren't presented with a problem on her part. Isn't he the one with the problem because he just discovered her affair? What is there to be concerned about with her? Wasnt' she told about his affair some years ago?

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Should someone who caved in to their weakness 10 years ago continue to be punished by a spouse who cannot or will not move toward forgiveness? Should the guy's wife lose her opportunity for true intimacy now that they are both coming

I don't think any person should be punished, but if the guy is too devastated to be intimate because he just found out about an affair, he is not "punishing her," that is just a natural consequence of an affair.

Lemme see if I can explain my point better.

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Later on in the relationship, she began to learn of some of his actions and naturally felt pretty unloved. Eventually, she started a relationship with another man that lasted about two months.

Eventually, my friend and his wife-to-be, made up, and married.

I led up to my main point, which is:

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The sad part of all this is that neither the guy's wife or cruisegonebad is the same person they were years ago. Do we blame teenagers for all the stupid stuff they did before they grew up? Or do we love them anyway and smile?

Neither of the women in question could lay a claim to maturity at the point in time where they failed to protect their weaknesses. Both were on rocky ground dealing with issues with their relationships. Each choose the path they took.

Heck, the guy probably should have been kicked to the curb. Instead, the guy's wife choose to have a fling, something that is credible for 30 years ago (before Harley) and if memory serves, cruisegonebad was in process of bailing on Todd, which is how her old affair got put on the table.

Yes, they are both responsible for what they did.

Yes, they should have made better choices.

Yes, both guys feel powerless because of what happened long ago when their WIVES WERE DIFFERENT PEOPLE lacking in maturity and lacking in their responsibility to protect their weaknesses.

In Todd's case, it has been three years and his wife was leaving him when he found out. Why was she leaving? In the guy's case, it has been over a year and he asked a question that had nagged him for years.

I say again, people don't stay in Limbo for NO reason. I have seen at least TWO posts that reveal parts of the reason - at least in my opinion, plus many other possibilities that pertain to both situations. But what is the core probability? That one has to do with outcomes.

What outcome would many folks want? How about happily ever after? Except that outcome is impossible because neither guy can forgive. Why? Or is the real outcome the lack of forgiveness and neither will man up to admitting it but they make a lot of noise while sitting on the dime looking for sympathy. I believe that owning your own stuff is an equal opportunity mind set.

Frankly, what I see are a couple of guys - several more examples are in current threads - who are dodging issues of their own and trying to escape self examination by pointing at their wive's old stuff. Radical honesty means exactly that and I don't see it here.

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Ok I agree with Larry on the last point he made that those guys are trying not to own their stuff while using their wive's indescertions to keep them from looking at themselves. They are avoiding their own short comings by trying to make their wive's the scapegoat. It's a lot easier to blame someone else for your happiness than it is to see the part you are playing in your own unhappiness.


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Disagree DIG, having an affair while engaged is just as painful. This did happen to me, and had I known he did this while we were engaged, I would not have married him. He tricked me into marrying him and married me under FALSE pretenses.

Adultery and deciet is wrong no matter who does it, but just because he was adulterous, does not mean she gets a pass on her adultery. Nor does it mean he is supposed to feel good about being tricked.

Mel, you are putting yourself into this situation and there several dynamics which make it different from your own situation.

He was cheating his lying [censored] off. She KNEW what he was doing and had her own fling. He didn't know she knew, I guess; if he did, he gets a pass, EXCEPT, he had an affair 15 years go. If he didn't know, they BOTH entered in the marriage in deceitful circumstance.

No, he isn't supposed to feel good about being tricked. Nor is he supposed to feel good about doing the trickery. I have seen comment that he is a different person from her and thus deals with forgiveness differently. That is valid, even though not fair, whatever fair is.

Two wrongs don't make a right. Agree. So how do you find a right in all this messy situation? How do you find an outcome that is rational? Or is a rational outcome impossible? Or is Limbo the real outcome for whatever reason?

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Larry, I do see your point, now. I missed the part where he had long hid his affairs so that does make a difference in my mind. They both defrauded EACH OTHER into getting married. thanks for s'plaining it so well. <img src="/ubbt/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Gimble: If you were living with a person (that would be a committed relationship) and they cheated on you, and at some time you cheated on them, then they wanted to marry you, and you knew of their infidelities, it would be okay for you not to tell them of yours?

MelodyLane: Only a fogged out wayward mind would view an affair as "such a minor thing," aphrodite.

What makes you think it was an affair or that they had a committed relationship? Shacking up is only a committed relationship if both parties verbally agree that it is. Obviously, they did not both agree. He continued seeing other women and did not even bother to hide it from her. I believe he probably also used the ambiguity of the situation to his advantage, as many unmarried men do. That's why single men hate it when a woman brings up conversations about trying to define exactly what sort of relationship they have. I do not believe the boundaries were as clearly defined as you think they were. In fact, I think the man deliberately made the boundaries fuzzy so as to confuse her so he'd have a ready excuse if she called him out on seeing other women but she would still feel guilty for seeing another man. I can't believe you guys don't recognize the game he was playing with her.

So, no, it is not clear to me that what she did was an affair or cheating, nor do I believe it was clear to her. And he needs to take responsibility for creating that ambiguity to begin with.

And I still think his "hurt" is just a ploy to deflect attention away from his own behavior, which is undeniably an adulterous affair with no ambiguity.

I also think he doesn't want to admit it, but his real problem is that his wife has a sexual past. That's why I think he's being a weirdo.

And I disagree with you all that a person has no control over how long they take to heal from something. Some things will take a long time to get over no matter what, but you can in fact make them take EVEN longer by holding to certain irrational thoughts. It's been proven that replacing your irrational thoughts with more rational ones DOES make you feel better and it doesn't matter whether the problem is adultery or a death of a close loved one. If you're taking longer to heal than other people would, irratinoal thoughts could be the culprit and they CAN be changed!

He should read the book Feeling Good: the New Mood Therapy by David Burns.

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AP:

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I can't believe you guys don't recognize the game he was playing with her.

Maybe yes, maybe no. Neither of us were there, but it IS a possibility. Yet that game is nothing compared to the one he is playing now, IMHO, flushing 30 years down the toilet of life. There was no ambiguity at all AP, he expected her to keep the home fires burning while he went out and spread pollen, IMHO. That was the game 30 years ago. And when women did the same thing, IT WAS A DEEP, DARK SECRET in context of the times. Social conditioning during those days was for women to keep their sexuality secret and their affairs even more so.

He says he can't get it up for her but his equipment is in otherwise great shape. Oh yea, where's the beef? Prove it. I can't imagine how or why Gimble could be so certain on this point. Maybe I misunderstood.

Maybe he can get it up but he doesn't want to with her. Oh now THAT one is real obvious. What I don't get from Gimble is why we are expected to take this guy at face value and chalk it to his discovery of his wife's affair that is causing him all this mental stuff. Given this guy's history, I don't think I would believe anything he said about his personal life or why he does or doesn't do whatever.

Oddly enough, he now has, after 30 years, his wife exactly where he wants her. But now he doesn't want her, not in "That way." Yea, I get that one too. I bet other guys here do as well and will fill in that blank I am leaving.

Larry

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QUOTE:

Oddly enough, he now has, after 30 years, his wife exactly where he wants her. But now he doesn't want her, not in "That way." Yea, I get that one too. I bet other guys here do as well and will fill in that blank I am leaving.


Ok Larry you got me. I am begging you to please fill in those blanks because right now I am feeling as dumb as a post. Do you think he is involoved in another A and because of that he can't get it up for her?

Please do tell.


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I swear I will. Be patient, I want to see the spin other guys put on this. It digs deep into how guys think. Well, how SOME guys think. And I have this guy pegged as one of THOSE guys. Check back about ten central.

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Ok will do. I always like to take a deeper look into how men think. It helps me understand the POV better.


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DIG #1869318 05/05/07 09:01 PM
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My conclusion may or may not be accurate. For certain, it is plausible:


Hokay DIG, here it is. And since you want a mental picture, I will expand a bit.

The first thing is to look at male conventional wisdom made up of short, pithy statements with a message. The first one is; Show me a beautiful woman and I will show you a guy tired of doing her. Then we go to; Stand on a street corner and ask. You get both laid and slapped a lot. Oh, and here is a real winner; once plowed, the field is always open for business, if you want it, yawn.

Until a guy gets slapped up side the head with the nesting thing, he wants to plow as many fields as he can, spreading pollen around, so to speak. Well not every guy, but most. And no way do most guys want to marry a slut as bad as themselves. Why, because they know what they are doing is wrong. So why do they do it? Well, social conditioning, their mamas raised them with entitlement, instinct, who knows, it just is.

The point is right up there within numero uno; Show me a beautiful woman and someone is tired of doing her. For men, it is the bagging that counts. And it is more than that. Women get bored after commitment. Men get bored after bagging their prey. Women get the march down the aisle. Men get possession of the body. Ok, some guys will spice it up a bit. After the first bag, they push the envelope. They want the object of their lust to give it all up; er, this is a family forum so I won't detail the kinks and not so kinks.

Once women get the march down the aisle and the infatuation burns off, they get bored with the guy, right? Ok, once the guy has pushed the envelope, he too gets bored. Ah, but wait. In this case, the guy never did get what he was after, and some guys are like this. She never gave it all up. She never became his toy. Making a woman into a toy is the ultimate for some guys. They ain't happy until then. And when the ultimate is achieved, the guy gets bored.

There is no longer a challenge. He is of a certain age where he needs more than a fence post hole to get excited, he needs his primal instinct triggered. She gave it all up. She quit resisting. He should be happy, but instead he is bored. In my opinion, he's that kind of guy.

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Larry.

You guys are making a great movie out of this guy. Unfortunately, it is mostly fiction.

When I started this thread, I wanted input on what makes a guy like my friend, or Todd, or some of the other examples of betrayed spouses here, get stuck in recovery.

This thread was not an effort on defining what an [censored] this guy is or isn't, or if he has ED or not. I simply wanted ideas as to why he is stuck and how to get him unstuck.

If the methodology to "unstick" someone was common knowledge, then we wouldn't see so many carbon copies running around here and every other infidelity forum I read.

So, let me reduce his condition to a semi-fictional one with a reduced set of facts. His wife fooled around on him in their pre-marital relationship 30+ years ago and he found out about it a year ago, but has been unable to get over it. What does he do?

I am only interested in potential fixes.

If his wife were the one stuck on his infidelities, then I would be here on her behalf, but she is not, and SHE considers him worth having whether or not anyone else does. He feels the same way about her.

All the best,
Gimble


-An affair is the embodiment of entitlement, fueled by resentment and lack of respect.
-An infidel will remain unreachable so long as their sense of entitlement exceeds their ability to reason.
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Gimble:

???????????????

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I am only interested in potential fixes.

So how you fix something when you don't know why it is broke? Besides which, it is the guy what has to fix himself, not you, you can only facilitate.

Sure there is a lot of fiction and speculation here. That is what you asked for. You are in control. You take what is delivered and use what is applicable to the extent that you can during discovery.

If you figure out what is wrong, you can help him fix it, maybe. If you haven't a clue why he is the way he is, then a fix is impossible, in my view. So ok, I'll bite, how do you fix something that is broke if you don't know why it is that way?

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Hi, Larry.

Don't take me the wrong way.

When MEL said that she suffered intensely for 8/9 months and after a year it begin to diminish with time, but that she hasn't changed the way she felt about it, that helped.

I am looking for anecdotal or direct experience or ideas. The psychology behind it may help define "stuck", but I am looking for potential solutions for my good friend, and perhaps I am a bit desperate to offer him something that he can set an anchor into.

There is another couple I am trying to help with essentially the same problem. Different circumstances, no official infidelity, but the same kind of "stuck".

I have poured through all my psychology resources including CBT and some more esoteric mind games, and there is no official fix I can find for someone suffering from an "obsessive loop" (my term) that they can't break out of.

So, when normal channels fail, you start looking in other places.

I feel certain that there is a simple but effect method for breaking people out of these "loops", but it is either as yet unknown, or not common knowledge. I am stubborn and want to find it <img src="/ubbt/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

Quote:
"So ok, I'll bite, how do you fix something that is broke if you don't know why it is that way? "

Well, if it is chemical, then the trigger doesn't have to be known to treat it. There are effective drugs for that.

If it is a combination of chemical and behavioral, and the cause is emotional trauma, then the exact set of circumstances is unimportant. In the later case, drugs don't work so well, but it seems likely that an "anti-emotional" trigger that diffuses the loop would be effective. That is what I am looking for.

MEL's loop died because her husband didn't continue to feed it and her brain chemistry eventually changed as time aged the underlying emotion. I think it is possible to shorten that process. I may be wrong, but that won't keep me from exploring the idea.

All the best,
Gimble


-An affair is the embodiment of entitlement, fueled by resentment and lack of respect.
-An infidel will remain unreachable so long as their sense of entitlement exceeds their ability to reason.
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Ok Larry I think I get what you are saying but now I have another question. How do we get past being bored? What do you do to became the OP to keep those home fires burning?


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Ok Larry I think I get what you are saying but now I have another question. How do we get past being bored? What do you do to became the OP to keep those home fires burning?

Easier than you think, and sort of counter intuitive.

You start with His Needs, Her Needs by Harley. Read it along with "How to Stay Married Without Going Crazy, by Rebecca F. Ward. One read without the other is incomplete.

Along the way, you recognize that marriage is the beginning of reality and the courtship phase as the end of fantasy.

There are a ton of books out there. Every author puts his/her spin on things. The pair I recommend breaks things down to simply language anyone can understand, can be digested by husbands more easily and is usually enough for someone to discover their inner potential.

Rebecca Ward explains why, and Harley explains what.

Neither one explains the sex side of marriage very well, in my opinion. If that becomes a challenge for you or your husband, then you can go to here:

http://marriage.about.com/od/sex/Sex_in_Marriage.htm

For a starter. Then you go to:

http://www.amazon.com/Sex-Starved-Marriage-Couples-Boosting-Libido/dp/0743227328

Which would be a good book for Gimble to read in his quest to help his buddy solve buddy's problem.

"Desire is a decision." During infatuation, the decision is easy. When the infatuation phase of courtship and marriage fades, desire yields to becoming a decision, just like love. You make an adult choice to love and desire.

The main thing is to conceive of marriage as entering into a family. Embrace the family. Protect the family. Take strong measures to protect yourself from outside influences except those which reinforce the family concept.

Finally, there isn't a good sex forum that I have been able to find that isn't overun by idiots and trolls. I wish there were. Each partner in a marriage has kinks. Those kinks may or may not match up. Books on the subject are typically written by women for women or by men for women because women buy books. Yet men have their own set of issues that needs dealing with.

Each party to a marriage enters with somewhat different expectations. Finding the common path takes effort, understanding and education. Start with Harley and go from there.

Hope this helps.

Larry

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Gimble:

He is in an obsessive loop. I probably should have said that originally. The root cause of the obsession has gone through the speculation phase here. If you can find the root cause, you can recommend he seek treatment for it.

The only way I know of to break an obesssion without knowledge of the root cause is not always successful. It depends on the root cause and how closely that root cause is to his vision of himself as a person.

Take a strong rubber band and have him put it on his wrist. Every time he obsesses, have him reach down and snap the rubber band smartly against his wrist. Enough negative feedback and he might break it, with emphasis on MIGHT. Any other form of negative feedback could also do the trick.

Any other path is going to be up a blind canyon, imho. If you find something, please post it or send it via email, I would be interested and appreciative of the information.

Larry

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If I were the wife in this situation, I would waltz my gorgeous self to the divorce lawyer without warning.

My message to him after that would be: You choose not to get over that so we can live a happy drama-free life together, so, try getting over losing me forever instead.

And I would wipe him completely out of my life. Pitch Black Darkness.

Can't have it both ways. See, I love my husband beyond life, but I refuse to subject myself to a life of dysfunction and drama.

Anyone who stays in a situation like this has a psycho-drama of their own that allows them some payoff for participating in it.

furthermore, a therapist doesn't have to be able to top the Harleys, doesn't even have to be that experienced, all they have to know is how to address behaviors, it's hard to break old nasty self-defeating habits, that's why we have therapists, to provide tools for doing so. SNAP.


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I've been away with a family emergency and am just now catching up.

Larry - two things you said on this thread regarding my story bother me. Here they are:

Quote
Since Todd is here, let me use his situation as an example; his wife was seduced (gave in to her weaknesses) many years ago by someone who used the techniques clearly detailed by an ex-cruise ship crewman in their thread. That is the short version.

and

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Should someone who caved in to their weakness 10 years ago continue to be punished by a spouse who cannot or will not move toward forgiveness?

I am very sensitive to the blame-shifting. Cruise was not "seduced" and "gave in to her weakness" - she CHOSE what she did. At first, I felt it was my fault for Cruise's actions. I also blamed the scumbag OM. When I realized that Cruise made dozens of concious decisions to have an A with full forethought, that hit me hard. Now I do not stand for any mention of "caved in to weakness" or "was seduced by an expert seducer." These are just another way of minimizing the CHOICE that Cruise made. It is one of the reasons I have in the past found your posts so frustrating. Here is the bottom line: Cruise vowed to forsake all others and conciously chose to break that vow.

As for the idea that I am "punishing" Cruise, I just don't know how to get through to people who believe this. Any negative emotion Cruise receives from me regarding this issue is the direct result of the A and the lie. This is not "punishment" (which implies directed action to inflict pain), it it a natural "consequence" (which arises naturally from the circumstance, without action needed).

Gimble - I will respond as soon as I can get my thoughts together to lay out the progression of my recovery or lack thereof.

Todd


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Gimble in response to your last post we are just going off of the info you gave us and maybe our speculating can help give your friend a different prespective on his sitch so he can get past it.


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