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cjack Offline OP
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Had a long talk with W last night. Asked her to come clean with me. She did...about everything! Starting with her motivation for dating me in the first place. Turns out she had dated one of my co-workers (I never suspected), and she started going out with me to get back at him! At every turn, she had doubts about our relationship, but she says she hid her feelings because she thought she could learn to love me. She says she was in love with the idea of being married, but not really in love with me. She says she didn't say anything because she knew it would destroy me, since I loved her unconditionally.<P>Anyway, she detailed the day by day experiences that led to her EA with the OM.<P>He is in the middle of a nasty divorce (are there any other kinds?), and is an old HS friend of my W. You know, the person you always had a thing for, but never acted on it...she asked him "how come we never dated?'<BR>He said "yeah, how come?"<P>Next thing you know, they're soul-mates, and he tells her he loves her. She says it back. All this in the course of what boils down to three weekends together.<P>Both you and I know that she's having her EN's met by the OM, and vice-versa. She feels like she did when she was 17; the last time they spoke. <P>She's already making plans to move up to Vegas to be with him. She says our marriage was over before it started, and there is no hope of reconciliation.<P>I told her she needed some serious therapy, and that she needed to step back, take some time, and re-evaluate her feelings for the OM.<P>She's not having any of that. She is so consumed with her romantic feelings for him that she cannot bear to go a day without talking to him. Sounds so familiar, huh?<P>I even told her that OM was only the key that let her out of her percieved "prison" of marriage. Our marriage was headed downhill, but she couldn't bring herself to end it, so she went and found an excuse...namely, the OM.<P>I think that she feels that this affair gave her an "out" from her marriage vows. Subconciously, she went looking for an affair in the hope that it would end what she thought was a mistake of a marriage. <P>She's not having any of this.<P>She says she loves me, but she doesn't love me the way that I deserve to be loved. She can't provide the love that I want, and she cannot deny herself happiness anymore. She used to be a party girl, but since we married, she's settled down quite a lot. When she's with the OM, she's the party girl again, and she misses that part of her personality.<P>She has convinced herself that OM is the only person who can meet her EN's. She says he's unlocked a lot of emotions that she's kept bottled up since we married. <P>I have resigned myself to the fact that divorce is inevitable. When my W makes up her mind, there is little chance of changing it.<P>My question is, how can I make her see that this relationship with the OM is happening for all the wrong reasons? I've told her this a dozen different ways. How he's telling her everything she wants to hear, how he's using her to get back at his wife, how he's fulfilling his own EN's at her expense, how it will end in a few months when the shine wears off and reality sets in.<P>I feel I can't reason with her, because she's being unreasonable.<P>Now what?<P><BR>

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cjack:<P>Unfortunately to more you press her to "see the truth" the more she will defend her affair and om. When is she to be moving? Until or if she moves Plan "A" her as much as possible. Time is what it will take!!!<P>Just be patient and take care of yourself.<P>bh<P>PS: Also, look at Recovery section and look at the thread "Helping my H see the illusion." Maybe that will help.

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Oh, cjack. I am so sorry for you. Isn't it amazing these HS relationships that come back to haunt us. Yes, my H and his OW were the same way. "Why didn't we get together in HS. I always loved you." Bleck. It just makes me want to puke. My personal feeling, if you loved each other so much in HS, you would have been together. I mean really. When my friends and I were interested in boys in HS, everybody knew. When guys like girls, everybody know. It's not like everyone is great at hiding their feelings at that age. Why do they seem to convince theirselves that it was true love 15 years later?<P>I think that most you can do is Plan A. See if she will go to a counselor. Are you religious? Does she have any moral objections to divorce? The only thing that is keeping my H with me right now is that he doesn't have a sciptural reason for divorce. I do though and he wants me to file. So, for now, I have a great opportunity to follow Plan A. No LBs (or as few as possible, I'm not perfect.), improving communication, being sure he agrees on things, giving up the children issue (I want, he doesn't), trying to prove to him that I care, meeting his needs, spending time with him. Basically, all the things that he wanted from me but wasn't getting before. I guess what you need to do is romance your wife. Buy her flowers and little gifts. Make her dinner or take her out someplace nice. Send her stuff at work. Maybe take her to a party. But ask her this, can she be a party girl in a relationship? How? Would you party with her? Or, is being a party girl mean to be single and sleep around? That could be a problem. You will really have to negotiate on that one.<P>I don't know why our spouses think that the OP is so great or rather they don't think that we can be so great. I, too, hear, I love you, but not in the way you deserve to be loved. What kind of crap is that? I mean, how should I be loved, and why doesn't he believe he can love me like that? I'm sure you have the same feelings. I totally feel you pain except my H is at least not packing up his things just yet.<P>Try to hang in there for awhile. If you W won't go to counseling, won't you please go for yourself? You have some really tough times coming up and you will really need someone to talk to face to face. Of course, you can always post here. Good luck to you.

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This morning I told her that I was planning on going into therapy. Just to help me work out some of the things I'm feeling. I learned (when we took our daughter in for therapy) that there is nothing wrong with looking for professional help. When my new insurance kicks in at the end of the month, I'm there.<P>She flatly refused to get help. She said "I don't need help to figure out my problems...I can do that just fine by myself."<P>Of course, if she was so good at fixing her problems, we wouldn't be in this mess now would we?<P>She claims to be religious, and told me over and over again when we were dating that she simply didn't believe in divorce. Once she got married, it would be forever, no matter what. Yeah, right!<P>Right now, her need to get divorced and rush into the waiting arms of the OM has superceded every other desire in her life. She has a great job with a great company. They respect her greatly. In fact, she got offered her dream job right after she asked for the divorce. She turned it down becuase she wouldn't have been able to perform it well, what with all that's going on, which made them even more happy with her! She's willing to throw that away to be closer to him in Vegas. Heck, she doesn't even like Vegas!<P> Her daughter had always had serious A.D.D. W's nomadic lifestyle for the first 6 years of her life contributed to that. Now, for 5 years the child has had stability and a safe, secure home life. She's now a perfectly well-adjusted kid. That's going out the window as well. I can't believe this woman is willing to sacrifice our child's mental health and future well-being for some guy who's still married!<P>In short, her morals, religious values, and everything we have worked so hard for (house, dog, money, stable family, good schools, quiet neighborhood) are currently insignificant to her. But this is understandable, because she's used to it.<P>Let me explain: Everything she's ever had that was nice was taken from her. Her parents were heavily into drugs. Her grandparents had put away quite a lot of money for her college education. Guess where it went? Up their noses. Her parents, who had always lived a nomadic life, divorced. She stayed with her mom, who couldn't support herself well, so they lost everything.<P><BR> She dropped out of HS, joined a band, fell in love with the drummer, who fathered a child and promptly split. Again, she lost everything. Living on food stamps, welfare checks, and going impossibly deep into debt. <P> While she was pregnant, she met a man and fell in love. A couple of years in, he told her he didn't love her anymore, and became violently abusive. She endured for a few more years, and then after he nearly killed her, she ran. Lost everything again and had to start over. <P> That's where I came in. After two years and an engagement, she lost her job. Luckily, she got a much better job offer in Phoenix. I gave up my job (which had been supporting us and paying off her debts), and we moved, leaving most everything behind and starting all over again.<P>I guess the point of this rambling stuff is that she's never had stability for any long period of time. She's used to throwing everything away every few years and starting over. So there is little or no remorse on her part, because she knows the drill, so to speak.<P>I'm still learning so much about her personality. I spent a great deal of time lately feeling sorry for myself, but now that I look at it, I should feel sorry for her. <P> I'll be okay, once the pain subsides. My parents raised me right, and gave me the strength of character to walk an honorable path in life. I truly want her to be happy, even if it's not with me, but I have a feeling she'll never learn from her mistakes.<P>Thanks again for the kind words and support. You are all truly helpful.

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Hi cjack -<BR>I just finished replying to you on my thread, and then I saw this, so thought I would check it out.<P>I might have missed it, but how were things between you and your wife before her affair?<BR>Did she share her feelings with you before she found him, or did she suddenly decide<BR>that she didn't love you like she should?<P>Your thoughts about her not being able to stay in one place for too long is interesting... maybe she thinks there is always something better... or she is afraid of getting too comfortable?<P>I really really wish that I could help you - there are many people here that are a wonderful help - I am at a loss for words, I'm sorry.<BR>I hope that you find happiness again. I am sorry for what you are going through.<P>Take care -<BR>QoF<P>

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cjack Offline OP
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Things before the affair were not perfect, but I didn't think the problems were insurmountable. The spark had certainly gone out. She was spending more and more time at the gym. She spent the last year or so getting herself into terrific shape (lost 30 lbs since we met, 15 percent body fat), and even began teaching aerobics. But our schedules were so different that I really only saw her on weekends. <P>We had grown apart, but I thought it was merely a phase. Things would get better for a time, then worse. No abuse, no yelling, just boredom and long, uncomfortable silences. Our sex life had never been great, but it had become downright nonexistent for a long time.<P>The problem, as I found out last night, was that she was afraid or incapable of sharing her feelings. She felt that, if she expressed her true feelings she would hurt me too badly. I think she also felt embarassed for getting in over her head. So she buried her true feelings (loss of love, resentment over being in a marriage she wasn't enjoying), and put on a front. <P>I know she didn't love me the way I loved her, but I didn't know about her hidden feelings. I wish I had.

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cjack,<P>It really sounds like you are the best thing that ever happened to her! And I don't mean it lightly.<P>My h and I both come from very unstable home lifes so we have had to invent it as we go, though like you, I think I was the one who grounded us into a more stable life.<P>I have also been told that he was never in-love with me, but could learn to, etc. What you said. I thought it was the "fog" of the affair, but we are very far along now in our recovery, so I have pursued this question again recently. He still says the same.<P>Well if it is true, he is feeling it now for the first time in our ten years.<P>I'm not sure what you mean in telling her to re-evaluate her feelings for OM, she'll just see how strong they are. Although the affair is based on fantasy, the FEELINGS ARE VERY REAL.<P>So, I would advise, don't go there. I would not suggest therapy either, it sounds like it is making her defensive.<P>The biggest thing is to really do a plan A. Work on depositing so many units that she can't not see it. That's what turned my h. I was also fortunate that he talked to a mutual friend.<P>The friend did not react, how could you? Rather, he asked him how this would work for him in the long-term? The OW was 21, what would he do when he tired of "carrying her" intellectually, etc??<P>How this will turn out for her - that's all that will register right now. Is her career important to her? What if she wakes up one day and realizes it's not worth it?<P>These are things she should be evaluating, not her feelings for OM. They are real as far as they go, and you will get nowhere with that train of thought.<P>But don't give up so soon. If you could have a wonderful marriage with her, would you want it? If yes, hang on to that.<P>Not only could you have it, but you could throw her a life-preserver and prevent her from going into another downward spiral.<P>My h is a lot like what you described. I have that joy on top of my own happiness in the marriage, that I saved him from his downward spiral. He and I both know he would have lost everything he now holds dear again. And I don't just mean his family. Talk about a nomadic life! His job has him almost living on an airplane as it is. He was headed for a crazy life with no roots like his single co-workers have. <P>There were many words I never thought I would hear throughout this ordeal:<P>"I'm so sorry I've put you through this"<BR>"I'm so grateful for the second chance you gave me, I don't deserve it"<BR>"You are the best thing that ever happened to me and I love you so much"<P>I have heard them all in the past few months and more...He has gone through an incredible metamorphosis...<p>[This message has been edited by schizzo (edited July 26, 2000).]

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by cjack:<BR><B>The problem, as I found out last night, was that she was afraid or incapable of sharing her feelings. She felt that, if she expressed her true feelings she would hurt me too badly. I think she also felt embarassed for getting in over her head. So she buried her true feelings (loss of love, resentment over being in a marriage she wasn't enjoying), and put on a front. <BR></B><HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>cjack, you were posting at the same time, but had to add, this is almost verbatim what I got.<P>

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cjack Offline OP
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Thanks schizzo. I needed that. <P>Right now, I'm just struggling to keep the lines of communication open. I'm trying Plan A, but she doesn't buy that I'm sincere. When I'm nice to her, she accuses me of playing "mind games" to try to "control" her.<BR> Ever since I read her e-mails to the OM, she says she can't trust me. Funny, isn't it? [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>If I could have a wonderful marriage with her, I'd jump at the chance. Heck, I'd take a so-so marriage with an agreement to keep trying!<P>My family and friends would think I was nuts to take her back, but my feelings for her are that strong. Through all the pain of this past month, I have tried to hate her, forget her, kill off my love for her, but it just won't die. I realize that eventually it may fade if she leaves, but I haven't given up all hope. I have told her again and again that I will be there to catch her when she falls, but the fog is so thick I don't think she hears it.<BR>

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cjack, well, you've definately made me lucky for what I have. At least my marriage is bad, but he's trying. Odd to think that your S is trying to fall in love with you. I don't really understand why it's so difficult.<P>Funny how really good people like us seem to end up with people with so much emotional baggage. My H's dad left when he was 3 years old after having numerous affairs. I don't think his mother ever got over the D and really my H had to act like a little adult. Which he did very well. He never learned how to share his feelings either. Although, he did just fine with the OW. My problem is that he doesn't think that I respect his feelings. So, somehow, I indicated that to him through words or actions. I am working on that and I hope that one day he will feel more comfortable sharing his feelings with me.<P>The sad thing is if my H leaves me and goes to her then there will be two people with a lot of emotional baggage. It probably one last either. Two people that are that self-absorbed and selfish will never be able to make each other happy. Unfortunately, some people have to experience things before they believe them. It sounds like your W might be one of those people. <P>Plan A until you are forced into Plan B. It sounds like that is what she is doing. I told my H that if we got divorced, I would wait a few years in case he came to his senses. You may tell that to your W if she goes to Vegas. Let her know she has a safe place to come home to when things don't work out. But, you can't wait forever. Just trust that things will work out.<P>I feel very sorry for our spouses. They seem to be searching for happiness and don't realize that it is right in front of their noses. In the meantime, good for you for going to counseling. I think it makes you a better man. Hang in there. I am very sorry for your pain.

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Thanks Lapeine. It's good to know that there are people who are working through this.<P>I had a revelation last night. This will take a little time to explain, so bear with me. <P>When I met my W, I was hosting a morning radio show in her hometown. We were the biggest, best, most popular show in the city. Fame of any kind is a dangerous drug, and when you have the opportunity to express yourself in front of 100 thousand people each week, it can change your personality. I had a pretty good sized ego, got into concerts and backstage all the time, hung out with famous people, got free drinks at the bar, got stopped in shopping malls, signed autographs, the whole nine yards. <P>Quite simply, my W fell in love with the celebrity, and not with the person.<P>At the same time, she was a party girl. Spent plenty of time with her friends at the bar, at concerts, etc. It was "cool" that she was dating "that guy on the radio." When we got engaged, we made the announcement on the morning show. How many other boyfriends can provide that kind of rush?<P>It all ended when we moved. She got a better job in the big city, and I agreed to go with her. She had to give up her friends, her social life, and seriously curttail her partying so that she could advance in her career. So the fun-loving party girl I fell in love with died when we moved, but I never noticed.<P>For my part, I couldn't find the same kind of job. I still work in radio, but I'm not on the air, so I no longer get the rock star/ego trip treatment. I was no longer the larger than life guy she fell for, I was just me.<P>What happened? She took that party girl personality and buried it. Before we moved, she was known to her friends as "Shelly." To me, my family, and all the new people in our life, she became "Michelle." A totally different person. On one level she changed because she was trying to be a "good wife." I'm extremely conservative and old-fashioned, so she tried to conform herself to what she thought my expectations of her were. There was no place for "Shelly" in our new life.<P>She hid her true feelings, her doubts, and in effect created a new personality to help her cope with our situation. I simply put my ego-driven personality on the shelf and remained "me," but she deliberately supressed "Shelly" and became Michelle.<P>She kept up this facade for a few years. A couple of months ago, she re-connected with a few people who knew "Shelly," but had no idea who Michelle was. The OM is a guy who "Shelly" always had a thing for.<P>So I was really just married to "Michelle," the person she created to make me happy. Problem is, she forgot who she really was in the process. <P>For the first time in over 4 years, I talked to Shelly last night. It was pretty strange. This morning, I called her to wish her a good day. I asked her how Shelly was doing. She said "I'm sorry, I can't let her out just now...its too difficult."<P>So that's where I am now. Michelle never really existed, and Shelly is in "love" with the OM. She's a pretty fragmented person, and she doesnt even realize it. I'm whole, but I'd like to help her become one person again.<P>I think I have a chance with that one person.


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