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Gamma #2425374 09/08/10 05:36 PM
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Okay, granted I have not read this entire thread, but Gamma, why on earth would you think her H is thinking the kids may not be his? Their kids are 6 and 8 and her A happened in 2009. I seriously doubt that is what is bothering her H. Not every A involves an OC. Projecting your own issues onto someone else is rarely helpful.


Me: BS/FWW: 48
BS/WH: 50
DS: 30, 27, 25
DD: 28
OC: 10
BH and I are raising my OC together.
writer1 #2425377 09/08/10 05:47 PM
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Writer1,

Because she said her H is distant with her children too, and she wonders why that is so. Now from her perspective she is absolutely sure this is the only affair she has had and is certain who is the father, but is that BHs' perspective?

God Bless
Gamma

Gamma #2425378 09/08/10 05:55 PM
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Reading back over the last page or so of threads, it sounds to me as though her BH is being triggered by having to go out of town again, since last year when he was away was when the A was going on. The silence and pulling away is his way of dealing with these triggers. He seems to be going into self-protection mode, perhaps because he's afraid that something else will happen with the OM while he's away. I don't see anything in her posts to indicate that her BH may be questioning the paternity of his children.


Me: BS/FWW: 48
BS/WH: 50
DS: 30, 27, 25
DD: 28
OC: 10
BH and I are raising my OC together.
Gamma #2425447 09/08/10 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted By: Gamma
Perhaps he is wondering if they are his, since he now doubts every memory he has with you, he might also doubt his parentage, you might want to clear this up if he gives you the chance. As they say Mammas' baby Pappas' maybe.


OK, yeah, my first thought was ouch! But I thought on this for a while. It is a fair point. I lied to him during the A and during our FR. He doesn't believe he has the whole story. And the night when the PA first came out, he did in fact tell me he doubted he fathered the girls. He's since said that he didn't mean that, that he said it in anger, as he said and did a lot of things in anger that night. But no, I don't know how his mind works. I'm trying to learn, so I can meet his EN's and be the best wife I can be, because that is what I want for us - I want an amazing marriage with him as my husband.

Originally Posted By: Gamma
Now from her perspective she is absolutely sure this is the only affair she has had and is certain who is the father, but is that BHs' perspective?

If he comes to me and says that the girls' parentage is something he doubts, we can gladly take a DNA test. I have no doubt the girls are his. I had one affair. That one was more than enough to detonate a nuclear bomb in our lives.

Sister, thank you for your kind words. I had actually started reading your HUGE thread today before you'd responded but hadn't made it all the way through yet.

I need to try harder to focus on the girls. I don't feel like I am the best mom I can be and a lot of times I doubt my ability to be a good mother. The ages they are, they pick up on everything - when things seem good between me and DH, they are just flying, but when things are bad...they definitely notice. I spent some time with my family tonight - my parents, my grandma, my brother, and the girls. As my mother reminds me not only do I have the girls but I have all of them and they need me too. It's funny, I - and they - always thought I was the one who had my head screwed on straight, that no one had to worry about. My brother was always the family screw-up. He's been battling a drug addiction for the past few years, had major financial difficulties, married young with an even younger wife (XW now). I proved to them, and to DH, that anyone can have a hole in their character. A hole I have been working to repair.

I haven't contacted DH since I sent him an email this afternoon letting him know I'd be at my folks' house tonight. writer1, self-protection is probably a good guess as to what's going on. He may also be thinking in the back of his mind that this would be an opportunity for me to see the OM if the A was still going on. And me thinking that may be what he's thinking, well, that's why I've tried to make contact with him so often.

On a good note, I got to see DD#2 have her first guitar lesson this evening. The glow on her face when she would play a note was simply amazing.


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
wulffpack_girl #2425769 09/10/10 09:51 AM
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Can anybody point me in the direction of some resources that talk about the BS feeling ambivalent? I read in another post yesterday about ambivalence setting in in the BS at around the 6-8 month mark. I'm wondering if DH is at that point now and that is why he has not contacted me all week while out of town. Would ambivalence be pretty similar to the withdrawal state of marriage? Would you deal with a BS's ambivalence/withdrawal the same, or try something different?

I continued to contact him this week, although after Wed. afternoon I dialed down on frequency. Dialed back the intensity. Tried to keep things upbeat. Texted him this morning saying I couldn't wait to see him tonight, to drive safe and that I love him. I'm trying so hard not to worry (and I am trying to breathe!) but worried nonetheless...wondering what will he be like when he gets home.

Are we really in recovery? I posted here assuming that since the A was over and we were trying to stay together that it meant recovery...but after reading some of the other posts yesterday (esp. DoNoMo's post) I am beginning to think we are not even really classified as being "in recovery" yet. I don't even know if that made sense. Just my mind is all over the map today.


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
wulffpack_girl #2425823 09/10/10 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
Can anybody point me in the direction of some resources that talk about the BS feeling ambivalent?


http://www.marriagebuilders.com/graphic/mbi5061_qa.html

Originally Posted By: Dr. Harley
...the unfaithful spouse wakes up to find himself or herself still married, but married to a spouse who is very upset about everything that happened. How does one go about getting that kind of marriage restored?

It's very common for the spouse having the affair to feel unremorseful. And it's common for the victimized spouse to feel that it wasn't his or her fault, either. So when an affair has ended, and a couple is ready to rebuild their relationship, neither wants to take responsibility. They both look at each other as having been very selfish, and they look at themselves as having gone the extra mile, with nothing to show for it. Why apologize for something that was the other person's fault?

There is a sense in which an apology is not really necessary. The only thing that's necessary is for the couple to take appropriate steps to rebuild their relationship. But an apology can certainly make taking those steps much easier.


Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
I read in another post yesterday about ambivalence setting in in the BS at around the 6-8 month mark.


That's when the "hysterical bonding" has slowed down, usually. And when a man's needs -- particularly sexual fulfillment and recreational companionship -- aren't being filled to overflowing, then the Love Busters have more of an impact and lead the betrayed spouse into Conflict or Withdrawal.

I'm at one year, and just yesterday I found myself wondering why I bother anymore. It's just files playing back in my head, and Love Units being withdrawn without my spouse's knowledge. That's why Radical Honesty is so important... if I weren't to tell my FWW that I was having these thoughts and having trouble diverting them into something else, she would have no idea why despite her efforts I'm suddenly in Conflict rather than Intimacy.

Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
I'm wondering if DH is at that point now and that is why he has not contacted me all week while out of town.


The hurt runs very deep, and this takes time. And in particular, it takes a very deep internal conversion to meeting his needs and refraining from all Love Busters. Pull the weight of recovery as long as you can. And when you can't anymore, let him know that, too, that you're running out of energy and need your needs met, too. But typically he'll start meeting them naturally when you draw him into Intimacy with you.

Remember always that most of what you're experiencing can be explained by understanding Love Busters, Exclusive Need-Meeting, Undivided Attention, Contrast Effect, and the Three States of Marriage. If your husband has decided to have a revenge affair, or is indulging in pornography, both of these create massive Contrast Effect that withdraw Love Units from your account in his heart without you doing anything!

Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
Would ambivalence be pretty similar to the withdrawal state of marriage?


Intimacy: Your partner's needs are more important to you than your own. You'll typically do everything you can to meet them.

Conflict: Your needs are more important to you than your partner's. You'll typically be willing to express those needs -- even as criticism -- and give your partner the opportunity to fill them.

Withdrawal: You've given up on having your partner meet your needs, and do your best to avoid them.

It looks like he's in Withdrawal right now. To draw him back to Intimacy, first you have to draw him into Conflict where he's willing to let his Taker express itself. It's a painful journey, but necessary.

Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
I continued to contact him this week, although after Wed. afternoon I dialed down on frequency.


Be sure you're supportive, not needy.

Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
Are we really in recovery? I posted here assuming that since the A was over and we were trying to stay together that it meant recovery...but after reading some of the other posts yesterday (esp. DoNoMo's post) I am beginning to think we are not even really classified as being "in recovery" yet.


You're mid-transition into recovery if you're still suffering withdrawal symptoms from the other man. If you're past the withdrawal symptoms ON YOUR PART AS THE BETRAYER (anger, anxiety, and depression), then you are in recovery, but just experiencing the rocky ups-and-downs that are part of going through the process to save your marriage.

You still may not save it. The moment you made the decision to let another man fill your emotional needs, you just gave your marriage a worse-than-fifty-percent chance of survival. But it's worth the effort, I think.


Doormat_No_More
(Formerly Barnboy)
Original thread lost in the forum purge of '09.
4 months after D-Day
1 year after D-Day
Two Years Later
Four Years Later
Doormat_No_More #2426085 09/11/10 11:23 AM
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Thank you, DoNoMo, for your insightful reply and the link.

Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More

Originally Posted By: Dr. Harley
It's very common for the spouse having the affair to feel unremorseful. And it's common for the victimized spouse to feel that it wasn't his or her fault, either. So when an affair has ended, and a couple is ready to rebuild their relationship, neither wants to take responsibility. They both look at each other as having been very selfish, and they look at themselves as having gone the extra mile, with nothing to show for it. Why apologize for something that was the other person's fault?



I am remorseful. Every second of every day, it seems. I am taking responsibility for what I've done both in the A itself but also for the condition of our marriage pre-A. I know BOTH of us could have done a better job at meeting each other's needs pre-A. Before and during the A, I laid blame completely on DH for not meeting my needs. I was the selfish one. Failure to effectively communicate my needs was the primary reason for them not being met. And failure to understand his needs, that they were different than mine, was the primary reason his needs weren't being met.

Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More
That's when the "hysterical bonding" has slowed down, usually. And when a man's needs -- particularly sexual fulfillment and recreational companionship -- aren't being filled to overflowing, then the Love Busters have more of an impact and lead the betrayed spouse into Conflict or Withdrawal.


It's hard to meet the need for SF (which incidentally is not one of DH's top five - or mine, interestingly enough. It's important, but for me it is an expression of affection) Hard to meet when physically DH does not respond to me. He will be close to me without pushing me away, but will not move to touch or kiss. He will sit like stone. It wasn't like this during "hysterical bonding" - which seemed to happen during the false recovery and hasn't happened since. Meeting recreational companionship is hard too when he doesn't want to do anything with me. We go out to dinner or shop. That's about it. I've tried suggesting all sorts of things. We did go on a bike ride together but that was a few weeks ago. He simply doesn't seem to want to do anything.

Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More
I'm at one year, and just yesterday I found myself wondering why I bother anymore. It's just files playing back in my head, and Love Units being withdrawn without my spouse's knowledge. That's why Radical Honesty is so important... if I weren't to tell my FWW that I was having these thoughts and having trouble diverting them into something else, she would have no idea why despite her efforts I'm suddenly in Conflict rather than Intimacy.


I sent DH the link on memories/files. I've directed him to Mark's Managing Memories thread. He sometimes tells me when he is having thoughts, sometimes I can just tell. But he doesn't open up to me about them. But I think you hit the nail on the head, that seems to pretty much sum up why the things I have been doing to try and meet EN's are not making an impact. He's stuck on these bad files.

Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More
...it takes a very deep internal conversion to meeting his needs and refraining from all Love Busters. Pull the weight of recovery as long as you can. And when you can't anymore, let him know that, too, that you're running out of energy and need your needs met, too. But typically he'll start meeting them naturally when you draw him into Intimacy with you.


I am trying. Some days I feel like it's killing me. And I know I am not meeting his needs "right." We speak different love languages - his is acts of service while mine is words of affirmation & physical touch. It's a shame we didn't learn this years ago.

I was completely shocked and suprised that he had my piano tuned while he was gone. I haven't played in years, basically my folks wanted to get rid of it so when we got a bigger house we "inherited" it. Since DD #2 has started with the guitar, I have been talking about how I kind of regretted not playing anymore. He had my Dad come over while I was at work Thursday to meet the piano tuner. I burst into tears. So every once in a while he does things like this and it just floors me.


Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More

Withdrawal: You've given up on having your partner meet your needs, and do your best to avoid them.

It looks like he's in Withdrawal right now. To draw him back to Intimacy, first you have to draw him into Conflict where he's willing to let his Taker express itself. It's a painful journey, but necessary.


Withdrawal...I think every once in a while, he pops out of it. I need to figure out what it is that helps him to pop out of it. What have I done to meet a need that he appreciates, maybe? I feel like I am stabbing around in the dark with needs-meeting. I know the needs, but guess I am not knowing the right things to do to meet them. I know what I'd like him to do for me but just like the love languages, giving him what I want ain't working...I'm going to finish HNHN on my own. I'm only a couple chapters into it - I was hoping that when he got back we could start the course and he could catch up in the reading. I don't even feel like bringing the HNHN course up to him now. I think I'll just do the course on my own. Maybe he will join in if he sees me working on it. I don't know.

Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More
Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
I continued to contact him this week, although after Wed. afternoon I dialed down on frequency.


Be sure you're supportive, not needy.


I think I screwed up at the beginning of the week and I was a little too needy. I switched up to just short messages about what was going on, what my daily schedule was, what the kids were doing. Info on some financial stuff I found out. A supportive quote or article. I don't know whether any of it was good/bad/indifferent.

I had stopped at the store on my way home from work yesterday and bought fresh flowers and some of his fave cookies, I was going to have them waiting for him when he got home. Was suprised he was already home when I got home from work. He has not had a lot to say to me. We did watch a movie together and snuggled on the couch - or more correctly, he "let me" be close to him without pulling away, didn't put his arm around me or anything. Even telling me about the piano, which was incredibly sweet, he kind of came in the office where I was on the computer (reading this forum, incidentally!) and dropped the receipt on the desk and said "I had your piano tuned while I was gone" and walked off.

Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More
You're mid-transition into recovery if you're still suffering withdrawal symptoms from the other man. If you're past the withdrawal symptoms ON YOUR PART AS THE BETRAYER (anger, anxiety, and depression), then you are in recovery, but just experiencing the rocky ups-and-downs that are part of going through the process to save your marriage.


I'm not in withdrawal anymore from the OM. NC is still in place and I have worked at managing my triggers. When I think about the A, it is with sadness, but not b/c of the loss of the A or the OM - it is over my actions. What I did to DH and to our marriage. I ache over the hurt I've caused DH. I grieve over the loss of DH's love, not the OM's falsehoods. I have a load of guilt that I battle with. When things seem to be OK with me and DH, the load is not so heavy and I can feel free of it for a while...but when I know he is in pain then I feel the full weight on me...does that make sense?

Originally Posted By: Doormat_No_More
You still may not save it. The moment you made the decision to let another man fill your emotional needs, you just gave your marriage a worse-than-fifty-percent chance of survival. But it's worth the effort, I think.


I think if the A hadn't happened, our M probably had a worse-then-fifty-percent chance of survival anyway. At least now we have the tools to try and save it. I agree, well worth the effort. Just hard as h3ll sometimes.


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
wulffpack_girl #2426442 09/13/10 09:13 AM
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How can I draw him into conflict when he is so far into withdrawal he refuses to come out? This weekend was awful. He puts on a good show around the kids, around family, and to some extent at church. But when we were alone...he did NOT want to spend any time with me, nor did he want to schedule UA time. I finally coaxed him into talking last night and he tells me he still thinks I am a liar, that he doesn't trust me at all. he said he didn't think even a poly would help assure him I was honest about the details of the A b/c I'd insisted I'd take one if he wanted me to during the false recovery...making him think that I must know a way to "beat" a poly. That he didn't want to come home from his business trip. That home is not a refuge for him anymore. No kisses or any other intimacy (got a peck on the lips when we first saw each other after he came home, initiated by me, not him, stopped by him). He turns his face from me if I try to touch him or get close.

All I know to keep saying that I am not giving up but I don't know how much longer I can live with what feels like hatred. His LB is so far in the red that nothing I am doing is having any sort of impact. I tried to engage him talking a little about MB last night and he only said he agrees with what little he has read so far. No interest in actually putting it to practice. I am thinking this week will probably be the end of our counseling. He's convinced it's not helping and I am pretty frustrated as well. I wish we could find a counselor around here who'd work through MB with us.

Maybe HNHN was not the right thing to start with. Not that we've actually started with it. I started reading the book and there is no interest on his part. Maybe I should have started with Love Busters. I have worked very hard to eliminate LBs on my part. AOs and IB were probably my biggest issues. Obviously Dishonesty as relates to the A. I've refrained from AOs and IB, but I feel like I get stuck being independent when he actively seeks to avoid me and won't spend time with me - I want to be with him, I don't want to be independent. And I'm doing the LB of dishonesty not b/c I am being actively dishonest but simply b/c he BELIEVES me to be dishonest. Does this make sense?

I know I need to pull the weight of this. I know it's my responsibility and I caused this by having an A. And I know I can't expect him to be willing or able to meet my needs right now. I know reciprocity is just not going to happen right now. But how do I deal with the constant LBs coming from his side? It just makes me feel beaten down, but on one hand I feel like I deserve it. And I know I sound like I am feeling sorry for myself today. I'm just frustrated and sad and I'm lonely...I miss DH's love. It wasn't perfect but it was true and it was real. He loved me for who I was, flaws and all. He knew the real me. The OM never did. I took DH and his love for granted and if he'd ever give me another chance I'd never take it for granted again.


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
wulffpack_girl #2426474 09/13/10 11:33 AM
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wulffpack_girl,

You MIGHT be able to lure him into a state of Conflict by:

Identifying the proper way to meet his ENs and beginning to do exactly that.

Identifying your own Love Busters that you do routinely and eliminating them.

I say MIGHT, because he may have shut down your account in his Love Bank, at least temporarily.

What will NOT work to get him to venture into caring enough again to engage you is to make his time with you all about engaging you regarding the affair and trying to work through the emotional holocaust every moment you are together.

Scheduling UA time is nearly impossible with a spouse in Withdrawal. They simply don't want to be with you enough to schedule it. Try to find things that can be done to meet his ENs and make your time together enjoyable (hopefully for both of you) without that time being a "scheduled UA time."

Also realize that as he enters into Conflict and begins to care about what he might be getting from you, his Taker will be the first thing to show up. This means that his first act in Conflict will be to engage in conflict. He is likely to make demands, DJs, AOs and the like and how YOU respond may be the determining factor as to whether your efforts make deposits or further withdrawals from his love bank either moving him forward or pushing him back into Withdrawal.

The bottom line is that you can't MAKE him do anything. You have no control over what he might do only what YOU will or will not do.

Does that make sense? Does it help at all?

Mark

wulffpack_girl #2426679 09/13/10 11:31 PM
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Wulffpack,

Have you read Surviving an Affair by Harley. That might help you more than HHHH right now.

Your H is not angry with you Wulffpack, he is deeply afraid. Your successfully lying to him during the affair, in the false recovery and after has convinced him that he is totally defenseless against you. He did not KNOW you were lying. He could not tell. He feels like a man who suddenly realizes he is blind being led into a cave that he knows nothing about.

In my opinion you are missing the important fact in all of this and that is your H's fear of how defenseless he is. He is withdrawing not because he doesn't love you, he is withdrawing to protect himself because he sees himself as defenseless against you. He may well accept that you are telling him the truth NOW, but he fears you will revert to lying to him and hurt yet again.

You need to come at this from the point of view that you have a very frightened, damaged, fearful person on your hands. He does not want to be home because he associates home with you and he fears you. You have the capacity to hurt him like no one else on earth. If he did not love you, he would not have that fear because you couldn't hurt him. His withdrawal is his attempt to protect himself and hopefully lose the love for you. However, if you keep depositing in his love bank or trying to, he cannot easily lose that love now can he??? Hence he is making it hard for you to make deposits, right?

Do you see what I am saying?

Think about it.

JL

Just Learning #2426742 09/14/10 11:25 AM
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Thank you, both Mark and JL, for your replies. You both have given me some good points to think about and to work on.

Originally Posted By: Mark1952
...Identifying the proper way to meet his ENs and beginning to do exactly that.

Identifying your own Love Busters that you do routinely and eliminating them.

I say MIGHT, because he may have shut down your account in his Love Bank, at least temporarily.


Originally Posted By: Just Learning
His withdrawal is his attempt to protect himself and hopefully lose the love for you. However, if you keep depositing in his love bank or trying to, he cannot easily lose that love now can he??? Hence he is making it hard for you to make deposits, right?


Got it. Right now his love bank is closed (at least to me). I'll keep trying to meet his EN's and avoid LB's. Since UA time right now is pretty much nonexistent, I'll focus on making the time we spend together as a family enjoyable. And focus on the four of us spending more time together. FC was high on his list.

JL, I have read SAA - it was the very first book I read when I found MB. The book came and I devoured it in a weekend. I'm all on board with MB and doing my best to do it on my own, but DH just doesn't seem to want to move forward. Again, he says he's agreed with what little he's read so far but no interest in reading the book or learning about POJA or any of the four rules Harley covers in SAA. The only thing he did complete was the EN questionnaire. And I realize I did not deal with that very well at all because I was so hurt by how he'd filled it out.

He's definitely making it hard for me to make deposits. Not only by just being withdrawn and not physically spending time with me. He's still in ignore mode from last week, I texted him this morning and asked if he wanted to have lunch w/me and he ignored. He did respond to my email about the car insurance (took care of setting up a new policy today, I hope he sees that not as being financially controlling or anything but that he sees it as FS). Since the little "peck" on the lips when he came home Friday, no kisses. Not even goodnight/good morning. He used to always kiss me goodbye in the morning when he went to work, whether I was awake or not. Never realized how much I would miss it. It's hard to make my Taker sit back and shut up, and let the Giver keep driving.

JL, thank you for pointing out the fear present in this situation. I'll keep trying to do things to make me feel more safe to him. Took care of one of those today. Quit my PT job. There is no need for me to be out of the house in the evenings for one thing. For another, the OM knew about this job and this is one less way of him contacting me. And yet another, I used the job as an excuse to meet OM for the 2nd physical encounter, and met him after I'd gotten done w/class. DH triggers every time I am gone to teach nights. I still have 4 more weeks to teach under my current contract, which is 2 evening classes. I was scheduled to do a class in November and told them I could not, and that I needed a break from teaching for a while.

Originally Posted By: Mark1952
The bottom line is that you can't MAKE him do anything. You have no control over what he might do only what YOU will or will not do.


I know...I tried to control our recovery by lying, and look where that got us. I hate feeling out of control. I want to "fix" everything. But yeah, I need to be reminded from time to time that all I can control is me - the woman in the mirror. What I say, what I do, what kind of attitude I have. Everything else I have to leave in God's hands.

Here's something funny: I was trying to remember this quote I saw once on controlling our attitude and started googling for what I could remember - and I found this:

As your faith is strengthened you will find that there is no longer the need to have a sense of control, that things will flow as they will, and that you will flow with them, to your great delight and benefit. ~Emmanuel Teney

thanks...I'll keep y'all posted...


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
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Wulffpack,

First and foremost you don't "fix" this. Recoverying and rebuilding a marriage from an affair requires HEALING, not fixing. I am glad you stepped back from the PT job especially if this is how you carried on your affair.

You need to help your H heal and you do that with a smile, with a touch, with patience and with time. He must heal himself, just like any incision but you can help by keeping the wound clean, by changing the dressings, by making sure he is comfortable.

Think about this for a moment. As for meeting his needs, right now he won't let you because when you do, you touch deep within him and the frightens him. You just do the best you can, be calm, and be kind. As for the order of his needs they will change, SF is likely to move back toward the top as other needs are met. You can always be open and honest with him no matter what he does.

You burned him badly with the false recovery actually worse than your affair. He could understand you statements that he failed you even if he actually did not, but the lying and false recovery really he cannot understand, can you???

I would strongly suggest that you contact the Harleys and seek their advice. The money spent is much cheaper than divorce and they are pro's at this.

You must give this time and have patience with yourself and with him. T&P are the watchwords.

JL

Mark1952 #2427006 09/15/10 07:08 AM
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JL, I know I can't "fix" it - the lying and the FR was me trying to take all of it into my own hands and "fix" it. I guess the urge to fix is from my need for control - does that make sense?

Originally Posted By: Just Learning
You burned him badly with the false recovery actually worse than your affair. He could understand you statements that he failed you even if he actually did not, but the lying and false recovery really he cannot understand, can you???



Yes, I agree the lying hurt him worse than the rest of it. I denied him crucial information that he needed to make a fully informed decision as to whether to remain in our marriage or not. When I read the section in LB about lying I can see where I was both trying to be a protector liar (protecting him from unpleasant information) and an avoid trouble liar (selfishly trying to protect myself from the consequences of my actions). Now my words mean nothing to him and I fully understand why. Again, I was trying to "fix" it on my own, assuming I knew best and making a DJ as to his ability to process the truth of what I'd done. By lying I showed that I didn't trust him. None of that justifies lying to him.

So now when I am O&H he doesn't believe me. He doubts my feelings for him are real.

Originally Posted By: Mark1952

What will NOT work to get him to venture into caring enough again to engage you is to make his time with you all about engaging you regarding the affair and trying to work through the emotional holocaust every moment you are together.


The problem is when I try to talk with him, the conversation always comes back to the A. Last night I tried to talk to him about working on our present but his words were, "What's the point?" I tried to tell him that I believe our present is what we can DO something about, that neither of us can change the past. He pointed out that he hasn't healed from the past. I told him that I thought that being together, spending time together, and meeting each other's ENs would be part of what would help him to heal. He always circles back to the A and said how he doesn't believe my efforts are genuine. At one point I told him that the A and the lying were b/c I had a hole in my character, a hole I had committed to fixing. He replied that he sees it as a "hole in my heart" for the OM, one that I'd always had and always would have (remember, the OM was an ex-boyfriend from HS). He doesn't believe I am with him because I want to be - hence all the LB deposits I try to make fall flat.

I told him that he had shown amazing courage, dedication, and love by just staying through all of this when goodbye would have been so much easier.

I didn't want to get into the past but that is all he's focused on. He seems so hopeless. Hope is the one thing that I still have. It's the only thing that gets me out of bed in the mornings and keeps me going throughout the day. I spend most of my day at work obsessively reading this forum and looking for advice and things that will help. That may or may not be good for me, I don't know (I know if they knew how little I focus on work it probably would not be good for my job!) I'd quit the day job too if it meant I could spend more time trying to help him heal. Right now I just feel like none of it matters without him. Not the job, not the house, everything is empty without him by my side. It's like I have no energy left over for anything else. I am supposed to be training for a half marathon and I simply don't have the desire to do it. I should have gotten up this morning and gone for a run, I should be getting ready for work right now, but I can't think about anything else when this is so consuming. It just doesn't matter...does that make sense? And I know it is not going to happen overnight, I know this will take T&P, but his hopelessness is contagious. When he focuses on the A all I can see is myself as the woman I was while it was going on or during the FR. A miserable excuse for a human being. A liar and a cheater. Someone who doesn't deserve happiness and definitely doesn't deserve the love of a decent, honest man. It knocks me right back into that pit. Yet he sees any evidence of depression as pining away for the OM and no other explanation is sufficient.

I told him I'd really like to find a counselor who'd work through the Harley material with us. That may very well end up being the Harleys via telephone. He said "OK." I plan on asking our counselor tomorrow about MB, although when I mentioned it before he seemed to be unfamiliar with it, so he might be a dead end. I definitely agree with DH that what we are doing is not helping.

OK I really have to get ready for work...I've got more thoughts so I'll check back later.


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
wulffpack_girl #2427054 09/15/10 09:31 AM
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Anyway...made it to work and just have more thoughts.

So obviously I am a control freak. That's also something that I have been trying to work on, as there is absolutely no control over this situation. The only thing I can control is myself. The only thing I can "fix" is myself, my wrong attitudes and my behavior. I've been trying to leave everything else in God's hands. And I know He does everything in His own time, so patience comes in again. It's just so hard to be patient sometimes. I see the positive stories on this forum and I want so badly for us to be one of the successes.

Thinking about who I was and what I did makes me sick. Early in recovery (real recovery - not the false R), I literally made myself sick. I cycled through a litany of self-punishing behaviors from throwing up to cutting myself. Now I see it as reactions to the feeling of being out of control. But I still feel the pain and disgust with myself. It makes it harder when I feel like that is how DH sees me, as digusting. He's even said as much, that he gets to the point where he looks at me and I disgust him.

I know all I can do - all I can control - is my response to him, my ability and willingness to meet his EN's, my ability to avoid LB's. I can continue to build on my list of EP's to help his feel like I am safe.

As far as EP's, I have:
1 - I will not attempt contact w/OM in any way, shape, or form. If OM attempts contact, I will terminate contact immediately and tell DH. This applies to any individuals in Group A of the Opposite Sex Protection Plan. This means no physical contact, no talking about maritial/personal problems, no ANYTHING.
2 - I will not discuss marital or personal issues with persons of the opposite sex. This includes particular cautions when dealing with Group B and C individuals.
3 - I will not put myself into situations with members of the opposite sex that could be viewed as inappropriate. Includes B,C, and D individuals. This includes but is not limited to: not going out to lunch with one one other male, even if work-related; avoid travelling alone with a member of the opposite sex (this one will take some doing at work, but I can take my personal car if necessary).
4 - If talking to close female friends/family regarding marriage, I will express an attitude of respect for DH at all times. (This may be more of a boundary than an EP?)
5 - DH has full access to all email and financial account passwords, cell phones, voice mail (cell and work) etc.
6 - No social networking sites. Ever. Period.
7 - Abstain from alcohol.
8 - Come home during lunch break each day unless otherwise prohibited by work conflicts. Lunch may be allowed with family/female friends/coworkers when the policy of POJA is followed.

What's already been done as relates to EPs: FB account has been terminated. Secondary (work) cell phone has been turned in. Quit PT job (have to finish out current contract - 2 more nights of work and then no more working at night). I should have put all this in writing at the beginning of our real recovery, or at least as soon as I discovered MB. I was doing them, although pre-MB I didn't know to call them EPs. I did travel for work with one other male coworker recently (although as a side note, we're all pretty sure he's an in-the-closet Group E - and I don't mean a dead person!)

Some of these I came up with while doing the Love Dare. The LD calls them "me boundaries", but they seem more like rules during conflict to me. I think they are still good, and I added more.
1 - I will listen first before speaking. I will not interrupt DH while he is talking and I will give him time to respond.
2 - I will deal with my own issues first (ex - leave work stress at work!)
3 - I will control my temper and avoid AOs at all costs.
4 - I will not call names.
5 - I will not discuss problems in front of the children.
6 - I will respect DH's opinion. I will refrain from making DJ's against DH.
7 - I will be O&H at all times with DH. I will not lie thinking to protect him, to make myself look better, or to avoid potential consequences of my actions.
8 - If I get upset or feel like I am close to losing my temper, I will simply say that I need a break and walk away.

Since right now all I can control is me, what else do I need to add?

Off for meetings. Hectic day at work.


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
wulffpack_girl #2427216 09/15/10 03:23 PM
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We BH's do tend to get stuck in the past. It sometimes provides validation -- "Look, I was right for once in this relationship!" -- and other times current power in the relationship. It's very hard to let it go.

The solution the Harleys recommend is to focus on meeting his needs here and now. Even though he feels like he hasn't healed from the past, focusing on what you can do together NOW will heal the wounds in time.

But don't you DARE try to tell him that! If you do so, it's a Disrespectful Judgment. You think you know better than he does, so you try to convince him to focus on the present and future for his own good. That's a big Love Buster, but a subtle one. Don't educate him in any way. If he asks, explain, but never put yourself in a position where you even tacitly appear to be in an intellectually superior position. Always peers. Always side-by-side. Never one leading the other... lead TOGETHER.


Doormat_No_More
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Doormat_No_More #2427279 09/15/10 06:17 PM
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Wulff,

It has been my observation that "control freaks" are often people very afraid of life, very afraid of being wrong, etc. Hence they hang on tight.

I tell the post-docs that work for me that you cannot do cutting edge research if you fear being wrong. There is nothing wrong with being wrong, but there is something seriously wrong with remaining wrong.

No one likes to fail, and no likes to be wrong, but there are worse things that includes doing nothing, or never daring to make your life better.

If you were to come to understand that the best control you have over your H is to make his life good, then you would stop trying to control him. The previous comment about the love buster of educating his is dead on.

He needs to spend his time in the past, and you need to learn from the past and move to a better place in your life. He has to see that being with you is more pleasant than being without you and that takes time and lots of "baby steps" on your part and his.

Please think about this.

JL

PS: You might tell him something like "trust is overrated". Nah! you really cannot say that wink but actually tell him that you don't expect him to trust you until he is convinced he can. You are open, you will be honest, and YOU ENCOURAGE HIM to check on you anyway and anytime he wants to. You will answer all questions and make your life an open book to him. Of course in order to check he must reengage into your life again, right? wink Think about that as well. You want him checking until he gets tired of it.

wulffpack_girl #2427312 09/15/10 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
...He doesn't believe I am with him because I want to be - hence all the LB deposits I try to make fall flat.
WPG, when they build a bridge across a broad river, they have to do a lot of subsurface preparations... riverbed excavation, drilling of holes for pilings. Placing re-bar, pouring in concrete.

Now, all of this goes on beneath the surface of the water. But rivers are full of mud & stuff, so you can't see any of it. To look at it, you'd think nothing was happening. Maybe you see a few guys in orange vests standing on a barge with some gear, apparently pumping gravel or concrete into the water, or taking measurements. You might think, what the heck for? You see only the work, but you see no result. But: a foundation is being built.

You didn't just empty your husband's LoveBank with your affair. With the false recovery, I might say, you sank it.

The common wisdom on this site (and I see it cited so often that I confess I'm not sure on whether it's direct from the Harleys' experience or whether it's simply the common wisdom) is that it can take 2 years to recover a marriage, even in good circumstances, O&H from the start, no FRs. You're only 13 months removed from d-day#1 and barely 8 months from d-day#2. This is early. It's not even a semi-respectable time to quit.

You want results. You want to SEE results. We all do. But results are a result of sustained commitment & preseverance. (Hey, didja hear the one about the guy who said "At first, I persevered, for a little while..." ?) As you've acknowledged yourself, after all, he hasn't left. He hasn't tossed you out or slapped you with a lawyer. Now, he's not the happy, close, loving guy you want him to be, yet. But you've still got a lot of "yet" to get through.

Your job right now isn't to fret about whether any of your LB deposits are building up below the surface. Your job right now is to keep tossing them in. <Kerplunk>.


Me: FWH, 50
My BW: Trust_Will_Come, 52, tall, beautiful & heart of gold
DD23, DS19
EA-then-PA Oct'08-Jan'09
Broke it off & confessed to BW (after OW's H found out) Jan.7 2009
Married 25 years & counting.
Grateful for forgiveness. Working to be a better husband.
"I wear the chain I forged in life... I made it link by link, and yard by yard" ~Jacob Marley's ghost, A Christmas Carol
"Do it again & you're out on your [bum]." ~My BW, Jan.7 2009
GloveOil #2427442 09/16/10 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted By: GloveOil
The common wisdom on this site (and I see it cited so often that I confess I'm not sure on whether it's direct from the Harleys' experience or whether it's simply the common wisdom) is that it can take 2 years to recover a marriage, even in good circumstances, O&H from the start, no FRs.


Dr. Harley's statement in his "Ten Basic Concepts" video is to the effect that, if couples follow his program, two years later they trust one another and are in love again. He doesn't say anything about "two to five years", or other caveats, just that if a *couple* follows his program for restoring their marriage, two years later they're in love and trust one another again.


Doormat_No_More
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Just Learning #2427487 09/16/10 11:05 AM
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thank you - all of you. I needed the encouragement to keep on keeping on...yeah, I admit, and I know it's my Taker talking, I DO want to see some results. Biggest thing is that I so want my EN for affection filled. The lack of it HURTS. But yes, as a big positive, he's still home, he hasn't contacted an attorney. And he said he'd give the Harley's method a chance, either we find a counselor locally, or I'm trying to encourage him to try the coaching center together.

JL - yes - my whole life I have always been afraid of being wrong. HATE being wrong. Funny how I could justify to myself going off and DOING something as wrong as an A. Anyway I see those same tendencies in our oldest DD. She hates being wrong. Even our youngest, she hates making mistakes but not to quite the same degree as our oldest. I don't want to see either of them end up like me, you know?

Originally Posted By: Just Learning
I tell the post-docs that work for me that you cannot do cutting edge research if you fear being wrong. There is nothing wrong with being wrong, but there is something seriously wrong with remaining wrong.


I love that analogy! Actually, TWO good analogies with Glove's bridge-building one. I need to just keep pouring in that concrete.

We were scheduled for couple's counseling today. He was supposed to have individual counseling yesterday but apparently his therapist had some kind of emergency and had to cancel. I asked him last night if he was going w/me today and he said no, he just didn't think it was helpful. I asked if there was a point in me going, if it was not helpful, and he said that one of us needed to go and tell the counselor that we were not coming back, that at least he needed "a break." I don't see a need in going on my own if we can better spend the money with the coaching center. DH is right, it's not helpful. We need action steps and tools, and not only that we need someone to hold us accountable for following through. We've ordered tons of books and workbooks that are useless unless BOTH of us commit to following through.

What's the best way to deal with comments like the one he made the other night, about him seeing it as I had a "hole in my heart" for the OM? Do I tell him that I understand why he feels that way, but that it's not true, tell DH that I love him, and leave it at that?

Also - re: DoNoMo's comments - I hope I haven't already hurt DH with DJ's by trying to talk MB with him. I'm just thinking about our conversation the other night, where he was stuck in the past, and I said that we couldn't do anything about the past, only the present, and how the Harley's program deals with focusing on the present and future. Maybe it wasn't too bad, if he is at least willing to consider MB.


FWW

"Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough." ~ Earl Wilson
wulffpack_girl #2427608 09/16/10 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
What's the best way to deal with comments like the one he made the other night, about him seeing it as I had a "hole in my heart" for the OM?


"I'm sorry for what I did. I love you because you are willing to be with me despite my mistakes. Thank you for telling me how you really feel; your honesty is really attractive "

Don't try to tell him he believes a lie -- which is what "but that's not true" says -- because that's a DJ. Acknowledge his feelings. Express appreciation for his honesty, your love for only him, and that . Then move the conversation away from recovery-talk if you can, and into something more pleasant.

Remember that every time either one of you brings up the affair, it withdraws Love Units. Answer any of his questions openly and honestly -- full, radical honesty is key here! -- but try to steer the conversation to something more pleasant. Or if it is no longer pleasant and safe, excuse yourself to do something else and come back later when you're composed.

Quote:
I hope I haven't already hurt DH with DJ's by trying to talk MB with him.


As long as the conversations are always taken with the attitude of "I want to know how he feels about trying this. I do not know any more than he does about the topic, but want to explore it together. I am willing to take no for an answer" you'll typically stay clear of DJ and SD territory.

Quote:
I said that we couldn't do anything about the past, only the present, and how the Harley's program deals with focusing on the present and future. Maybe it wasn't too bad, if he is at least willing to consider MB.


If he's considering it, he probably feels good about it, which means you've probably avoided the pitfalls of coming off like you're lecturing or educating him.


Doormat_No_More
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