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"Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth"

Henry David Thoreau
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I think that the only way to mend a broken heart is time. Sucks...I know.

As for feeling like if you tell H about your triggers that he needs to "fix" it...I had that same problem. I ended up telling H in advance "I do not need you to do anything, I just want you to know that I'm feeling...." That way, H understands exactly what the reason is for my telling him.

It's worked for us.

HTM


BW 37 (Me).
F?WH 35.
06/97 Married.
Three sons...4, 5, and 7.
06/04 EA begins (Unknown to me).
02/10/05 D-Day EA (Unknown PA).
02/24/08 D-Day LTA 3+ YEARS! (same OW).


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Thanks intovert, I put the book in my shopping cart. It is out of stock currently at Amazon. I guess there are a lot of broken souls out there right now. It looks like a good book though.


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wmf,

Sorry I've been gone a couple of days. My friends down the street have had some difficult days, and I have been helping them out.

Triggers. Yeah. BTDT.

Here is what you need to do. First, you recognize them as what they are:

1. Triggers are not happening now, they are REMINDERS of previous events.
2. Triggers can be attributed to a variety of events in the physical or emotional world (for example, movies, places, smells, sounds).
3. Triggers are the result of a MENTAL/COGNITIVE connection and do not necessarily HAVE to lead to an emotional response.


Please note number 3.

Understanding the three concepts about triggers will actually help you control your response to them. I used these ideas to help me (still do).

Let's say I am triggered by a place. I will use my real-world trigger, which is a road in town.

I drive into town to go to Office Depot. I turn onto the street and immediately begin to trigger (#1) because I am reminded that OW lives on the same road (#2). The place has given me the reminder of the affair, and the connection has been made to the emotions - all of them!!! - of the d-day, and the fallout of the affair, right?

Now, here's where #3 comes into play.

I say to myself:

"This is a trip to Office Depot. The affair happened X number of months ago, and this is now my personal RECLAMATION of this place in town. This activity is now for the purpose of office supply shopping, and NOT for affair-related memories or emotions - PERIOD. I am not emotionally attached at this time, this is office supply time."

I repeat this as much as I need to, in order to tell my brain that this is office supply time, and to reclaim the place and this area of the road. I repeat it calmly, and with a business-like manner. I might even prepare myself in advance, and do this trip with the expressed purpose of reclamation of the triggering place.


If a trigger blindsides me, I can still use the self-talk. I can stop, and tell myself that the affair took place back at another point in time. I can also tell myself that I do recognize the emotion that is being triggered is "X", but that it is not necessary at this time to fully extend myself into that emotion. To recognize the triggering of that emotion is enough, to know it is there is enough, but to immerse myself in it and to empathize with that feeling right now is NOT NEEDED. I also tell myself that I will, in fact, allow myself time at a specific time later to "experience" the feeling (and I say the time!).

Believe it or not, this has worked.


Oh. Here is your 2X4. NO MORE MARATHONS. You are to sit in the corner for that, and have after-school detention, young lady!

(Feel better?)

Now you have seen the difference, again, between the unproductive marathon and the shorter productive talks. Go with the short ones, girl. Pace yourself.

Hey - your husband sounds like he is trying. Sure, he wants to know that HE didn't do something to make you hurt! My H is the same way when he knows I'm in pain. He wants to, needs to know what to do to help you. If his instinct is to just hug you, then let him. Let him help fill you up. It will take a lot of hugs to do that, so let him make those deposits.

I like that he brought you flowers. He is trying, in little ways. It sounds like he just isn't sure what to do, but he wants to. I think if he had a giant band-aid for your heart, he would put it there.

Give yourself some time. It's okay to tell him that it hurts. Because if you try to sweep this under the rug, your resentment will peel this marriage apart in another way.

Keep trucking. You are doing very well. I promise - even though you think you aren't, you ARE.

SB


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Sorry for the T/J, SB could you post the 3 facts to my thread for my future reference?

thanking you in advance.
Lil


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 Quote:
If a trigger blindsides me, I can still use the self-talk. I can stop, and tell myself that the affair took place back at another point in time. I can also tell myself that I do recognize the emotion that is being triggered is "X", but that it is not necessary at this time to fully extend myself into that emotion. To recognize the triggering of that emotion is enough, to know it is there is enough, but to immerse myself in it and to empathize with that feeling right now is NOT NEEDED.


I love point number 3 where it sok to have the trigger and to recoganize that no response is needed. I am going to have to work on that , when I trigger to just be still and not do anythign about nor let it distract me from the origianl path I was on before it came on.

 Quote:
I like that he brought you flowers. He is trying, in little ways. It sounds like he just isn't sure what to do, but he wants to. I think if he had a giant band-aid for your heart, he would put it there.

Like I said early on I am lucky I was able to connect with such a wonderful person. Inside he genuinely is a good guy ( I guess most people are) full of care and love. It just makes it that much harder to deal with the fact that "His " actions caused such a wound that I even need a bandaid in the first place.

I sense that he is feeling a lot of remorse for the pain that his A caused. He really belived that he would be able to shield me from the pain of it. That he and OW would be able to continue a "secret relationship" until he was able to seperate from me and he would connect with her after our D so as to not cause me or the kids pain. I hop that now even he can see how un-realistic that plan was, there were numerous international calls a day. Hotel bill that he put on our joint credit card when she flew here to be with him after his business trip. I handle the finances so all the bills go thru me DUH!
Of couse all of these bill came after D day so they were not part of my "suspisions" but they still exist and I have to keep telling myself it is in the past. when I come across our current phone or CC bill there is a trigger but I have to keep using a version of your point 3 that says to me " I already know about the bill" been there paid that one 3 months ago. This is a new bill has nothing to do with the A .

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Oh. Here is your 2X4. NO MORE MARATHONS. You are to sit in the corner for that, and have after-school detention, young lady!

Even my thick head can see now that the marathons are not helpful or good in ANY WAY. The trick is am I smart enough to stop one before it happnes. I sure I am going to try my darndest.

 Quote:

Keep trucking. You are doing very well. I promise - even though you think you aren't, you ARE.


Thanks those are valuable words to me to hear because its hard to gauge your own progress when you are the one stuck in the maze. I apppreciate you continuing to look into my maze of recovery and helping me find my way out.


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Triggers are what get me too. Sometimes I can stop the domino effect and sometimes I just can't. I start breathing heavy and fast and away I go. The when it's over I come down crying and go into an overwhelming sadness. My H just doesn't get it, nor can he handle it.

Sometimes I just cannot believe he did it. I just can't believe it. But he did, it's reality.


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The fallout things afterward, like the bills, come along in trickles which I hated.

I found little things on the computer, and then there would be a round of questioning.

I learned about the marathons and developed the "rules" out of necessity.

Because I work in communication and language, it was a natural outcropping from my job. I just knew that the marathons were damaging US, and that he could not take it. The wedge that they were causing were making the marriage an unhappy place

and I wanted that marriage to be a happy place!


So the marathons had to change.


The rules were developed because I had to change.

Reading on MB made me understand that so many other women (and a few men) were very much like me, in the marathon sense. I couldn't believe how many other BS's spent nights in marathon talks.

And the body language, well, I just knew that stuff, from work and college, etc.


Follow the rules. I use them in our general conversations now. I've completely changed how I talk with him, and he talks so much now, well, sometimes I sort of want him to shush. \:D

Not really, the sound of his voice makes me happy!

I get the idea of the triggers, and how they overwhelm you. I would sometimes sit and wallow in the thoughts of the affair. At times, I would just want to think about it, and that's all I would want to do - focus only on the affair. So one of the things I did was to make sure that I had time scheduled in my day in order to do that, so that I could allow for this time, knowing that my brain needed "affair processing time". I think the trauma is overwhelming, and in order to get my mind wrapped around it, I had to actually schedule time for that thought process. Once I did that, it really did reduce a lot of the sudden worry I was experiencing at other times during the day - I could tell myself, "SB, you can think about this at 630, because you have that scheduled later, remember." And I would, and it really did help me.

As for letting H help? He did, and he wanted to. Most of the time I didn't tell him specific details about why I was hurting. He didn't need to know EXACTLY why - did he? He knew it was the affair pain. So I would say, "I'm having a rough time right now," and he would stop whatever and I would lean into him and he would hold me for whatever time I needed. No need to talk most of the time, if I didn't need to. Sometimes, if I needed to, I might say, "Later on, could we talk about X, just X, for 15 minutes only?"

And he KNEW I WOULD TALK ONLY FOR 15 MINUTES BECAUSE I USED THE RULES!!!!!!

See, once you establish the trust by using the rules, set the timer, and stick with it two or three times, he will talk, and will support you.

It works, because YOU CHANGE.

And I did change. Over time, he did change, too.


Our marriage has changed soooooooo much.


Wow. That's a long post, but worth it.
I feel better, anyway!
SB


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 Quote:
I just knew that the marathons were damaging US, and that he could not take it. The wedge that they were causing were making the marriage an unhappy place

and I wanted that marriage to be a happy place!


So the marathons had to change.


The rules were developed because I had to change.

Reading on MB made me understand that so many other women (and a few men) were very much like me, in the marathon sense. I couldn't believe how many other BS's spent nights in marathon talks.


My brain gets it but at the same time I can also see how easily we women can get caught up with turing the converstaion into a marathon. I for one am discoveing that the reason I end up extending the conversation is for 2 reasons
1) I am a talker ( bad habit need to change that )
2) I am looking for a resolution so I am unable to terminate the conversation until I feel we have come to some sort of solution and closure.
And obviously there is no resolution/closure to this problem that can be brought about by any single converstion. Once I can convince my self of that (especially during a discussion) I think I will be able to notice when I am staying "too long" in a converstaion for the wrong reasons and be able to walk away from it.

 Quote:
I get the idea of the triggers, and how they overwhelm you. I would sometimes sit and wallow in the thoughts of the affair. At times, I would just want to think about it, and that's all I would want to do - focus only on the affair.

Yep sound good to me. While I am doing that can I also take a needle and continuoulsy poke myself so there is a physical wound as well as emotional one. LOL \:\)
Its hard for me to get away from that one too. I find that the opposite works for me. I made alist of my pursuit of happiness whihc is a list about 10 or so things that I gave a lot of thought on what tasks can I do that will make me happy. Examples ,
1) go to a Yoga class
2) listening to music
3) call and chat or hang out with GF.
and so on
So when I feel low or I know I need to refocus, I say to myself I can do anything that is predefined on my list. Not allowed to do anything other than that. So double bonus, one distraction from A talk and second just did something that I know is guranteed to make me happy so end result Happiness \:\) Sometimes it works sometimes it does not, but I am trying.

All I know at this point is that I as a human being will recover from this ordeal. I will not allow myself to be defeated by this pain and my past mistakes. Whether or not my R and M will survive remains to be seen and 50% of that depends on me and 50% of that depends on DH.

I was reading the How to survive an Affair last night and somthing really stuck with me . The 4 reasons for why plan A. Specifically reason 4 wherein if plan A falis then if nothing else after I have deposited many units into Dh's love bank and he is overdrawn by a lot, atleast the BS will be at peace with having no love left for the WS, and less pain at the inevitable D. I hope that it is not the ultimate result in our stich but I can see how there can be peace and comfort in that. In a twisetd way it actually makes me feel more positive(I know it does not sound like it) and reduces my panic to make it work at all costs or else..... I just keep doing my part and if it works then great, I will have a wonderful relationship with a wonderful man . If we cant show each other love and care inspite of focusing on it then ke sera sera.


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 Quote:
Sometimes I just cannot believe he did it. I just can't believe it. But he did, it's reality.


Those words keep playing in my head all the time. I know its hard to accept that He did that to me too. Every time I post I am so hurt and resistant to using the term "he had an A" as if me syaing or not saying it will change it. I am almost looking to soften the impact of what he did by trying to come up with a new name for it. But you know that there isint. My H did have an A , just like every other common WH, nothing special or soft about it. He had one and it hurts me. Once I begin to accept that I think I will truly be heading into recovery cause then I will be past the "acceptance " phase. Whats next Anger, Denial, Depression - I forget what the order is LOL \:\)


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I feel the same way about the "talks" - I also was looking for some kind of ANSWER as to WHY he would do something to hurt so many people? I'm sorry I just didn't get it....Didn't you think about this... didn't you think about that.... how could you go into a married womans house and have sex with her....what's wrong with you? I wanted a single answer for some kind of closure and you are right there isn't one.

After one of our marathon talks I will QUOTE what my husband said to me "You are looking for some kind of psychological answer as to what happened, reading all these books you read. There IS NO psychological answer. I did it!!!!! I wanted to do it!!! I did it for almost a year!!! I did it!!! There is no excuse. I am a selfish B****** who went after a marrried woman knowing it was wrong, knowing it would hurt people and I didn't care. I made a fool of myself and I live with that everyday. I don't need YOU reminding me.

Well he's sorry now, after all the destruction. It's hard to understand a persons thinking, that they are so needy and shallow, it's pathetic.

I'm so glad I found this board. I sware I thought I was going crazy there for a while. I can't believe so many people go through this on a daily basis.


BS (ME) Fabulous 40's
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 Quote:
After one of our marathon talks I will QUOTE what my husband said to me "You are looking for some kind of psychological answer as to what happened, reading all these books you read. There IS NO psychological answer. I did it!!!!! I wanted to do it!!! I did it for almost a year!!! I did it!!! There is no excuse. I am a selfish B****** who went after a marrried woman knowing it was wrong, knowing it would hurt people and I didn't care. I made a fool of myself and I live with that everyday. I don't need YOU reminding me.


Even though we BS's dont want to see it that way I would like to say that in some way what your H is saying progress in his/your recovery. It shows that HE is ready to accept for himself what he did was wrong. In the end isnt that the first goal, for the WS to recoganize what they did was wrong and hurtful and not completey blame the BS for their affair.
That being said no amount of apology from him can take away the pain that my H caused me by having an A and no amount of me continuously reminding him of his mistake and seeing his remorse will make it better.

So you and I both have to figure out how many times and how many marathon sessions we are going to need our H's to acknowledge that they realise their A was wrong before we can move on to the next issue.
I for one feel like I have had more marthons than I want to and just cannot bear the thought of having even one more.

May be I can get him to tape his words on camera and just watch them over and over when I feel the urge to see him express remorse, LOL \:\)


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Luv and WMF,

I just love the two of you!

I can see myself in both of you - it is like looking back to 2006, and seeing a movie of the thoughts and tears and then knowing this:


THERE IS HOPE.

See, I was exactly where the two of you are, and heard my H say nearly the same thing!

"I don't know what I was thinking. I was selfish! I was stupid! I didn't plan for you to ever find out! It wasn't meant for this to happen and I was a stupid bast*&*&^*&!!!"


There is no answer to the question, "WHY?"

I can save you both the time. I read all the books, searched the internet, asked the oldest people I know. There is no answer.

It is what it is.



When I post to you two, I ask myself, "What did I most need to hear? What did I want to KNOW?????"

I wanted to know that what I was going through was normal. And what I wanted to know was - what to expect next.


At around six months after d-day, I got mad. I was really mad because I thought my H wasn't doing his share of the work, and in reality, he wasn't. He wouldn't read the books, and wouldn't really talk to me about how to recover. He was embarrassed and ashamed of what he had done. He wanted to help me, but he didn't want to bring up the affair, because all I did was cry when I talked about it.

He mistook the fact that I cried for "increasing" my pain.

I had to explain very carefully that it was virtually IMPOSSIBLE to increase my pain. That I woke up with it, went to sleep with it, dreamed it, walked it, and lived it.

Talking about the affair, more importantly, talking about IMPROVING THE MARRIAGE, was what gave me HOPE. It was the most important focus I had in life - and he needed to help me have that hope. The only thing in the world I needed from him was to focus on giving me that hope, and his sacrifice in the process was to swallow his embarrassment and talk US through it all.

To also understand that *I* had embarrassment about it all, too.


That was the topic on one of the "talks" that made perhaps the most difference in our progress.


Maybe when you reach the point of not talking about the "affair" so much, and focusing on talking about THE MARRIAGE, AND IMPROVING IT TOGETHER, you can help your husbands move forward. And in the process, help yourselves, too.

I hope this post helps you both.

SB


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 Quote:
At around six months after d-day, I got mad. I was really mad because I thought my H wasn't doing his share of the work, and in reality, he wasn't. He wouldn't read the books, and wouldn't really talk to me about how to recover. He was embarrassed and ashamed of what he had done. He wanted to help me, but he didn't want to bring up the affair, because all I did was cry when I talked about it.


I'm right there right now. There may be other things going on and I am keeping my eyes and ears open to any suspicious behavior, but that is EXACTLY what I am feeling right now.

 Quote:
He mistook the fact that I cried for "increasing" my pain.

I had to explain very carefully that it was virtually IMPOSSIBLE to increase my pain. That I woke up with it, went to sleep with it, dreamed it, walked it, and lived it.

Talking about the affair, more importantly, talking about IMPROVING THE MARRIAGE, was what gave me HOPE. It was the most important focus I had in life - and he needed to help me have that hope. The only thing in the world I needed from him was to focus on giving me that hope, and his sacrifice in the process was to swallow his embarrassment and talk US through it all.


This is something that I haven't been able to explain to my H. We don't marathon quite as much as we used to...I realized awhile ago that I was looking for the answer and there wasn't one that was ever going to satisfy me. It took a LOT of marathons and coming out at the other end feeling no more satisfied than when we started.

My H has been slow to recognize that he HAS to spearhead some of recovery or it won't happen...and he is recognizing that if he doesn't step up, that he risks losing our relationship for good.

I think we will all ride it out. At least out Hs are trying...even if they aren't completely succeeding yet.

HTM


BW 37 (Me).
F?WH 35.
06/97 Married.
Three sons...4, 5, and 7.
06/04 EA begins (Unknown to me).
02/10/05 D-Day EA (Unknown PA).
02/24/08 D-Day LTA 3+ YEARS! (same OW).


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One issue the BS has to understand is that the WS is NOT ON THE SAME TIMELINE in the recovery process.

The timelines are different for the betrayed than for the wayward, and the joint recovery of the marriage is also on a somewhat different timeline of its own.

There are so many factors that can keep the two spouses on different timelines.

How was the affair discovered, how long did it last, how was it broken up, what was the attitude of the wayward when the affair was discovered, what is the status of no-contact, etc.?

The fact that the wayward takes more time to "get on board" the recovery wagon isn't a surprise to me at all. For some reason, that is just a typical trend that I have seen. It takes them awhile to really gear up. I think it has to do with the fact that they are working on personal recovery - they have so much to deal with, if you think about it.

They have just nuked the life of the person they love more than anyone else in the world.

And now, they have to deal with it. They themselves cannot believe they did this. They absolutely cannot believe it, even though they did it, lived it, and watched themselves do it.

Now, they are watching themselves pick up the pieces after the bomb.

And trying to figure out what the he// they did, and why.

Trying to explain it all.


Only...........

they know they can't, because they can't even believe it themselves.


So their timeline is WAY different than the BS timeline, because they are in shock, too.

FWIW.


SB


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This is a wise one helping you along.

SB, you are the Mr. Miyagi of the MB world.

WMF, how's the timer working for you?


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jlr,

I have found peace.


Thanks. I am honored to be thought of as equivalent to Mr. Miyagi!

I have worked very hard this summer to get to a place of peace with this event in my life, with all the events of my life.



I am there.


It is good to feel this way.



I wanted to let everyone know that I have out of town guests coming over the next few days, so if I am off the boards for a bit, don't worry - I'm entertaining!

SB


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All this has been so helpful to me. Thank you so much. We TRIED THE 30 MINUTE LIMIT TALK LAST NIGHT - no marathon and I didn't bring it up ALL day until then. And IT WORKS much better. He felt less stressed and said it was a good plan for the future. SB you are right we are on different time lines for recovery. And I DO understand that he is hurting too. Hy H also does little of his share, but is doing something.

Since he still works with her, he has to report every single time he sees her, and he is not allowed to speak to her. If she speaks to him, or even makes eye contact he has to tell me. I KNOW this really SUCKS for now but he is actively looking for a job transfer within his company. But for now, unless I want to financially distroy us TOO, I have to TRY very hard to be patient.

The OW was NO BEAUTY, I was shocked. She was just "there everyday" someone convenient and someone to meet the 2 of his top 5 emotional needs I wasn't meeting. She WORSHIPED the ground he walked on. Talked on the phone with her from early in the morning until into the morning, 300-500 phone calls and text messages per month. I know after so much reading it was an addition and it was FANTASY LAND with no stress, a carefree relationship. I DO understand more after reading but it still mkaes me sick.

Most of the A I read about start out as emotional then led to Sex, his started out as sex and let to emotional. Just to know your husband told someone else HE LOVED THEM, rips your heart to peices.
Anyway, hoping for a good weekend. Hanging in there.
Hanging in there.


BS (ME) Fabulous 40's
D-Day March 2008
Co-Worker Affair lasted 13 Months
Divorce Final June 2010
1 child - teenager
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 439
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W
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 439
 Quote:
Luv and WMF,

I just love the two of you!

I can see myself in both of you - it is like looking back to 2006, and seeing a movie of the thoughts and tears and then knowing this:


THERE IS HOPE.



And I love that you keep reminding me that there is hope when I waver in my belief of it \:\)

 Quote:
I can save you both the time. I read all the books, searched the internet, asked the oldest people I know. There is no answer.

It is what it is.
I think I am getting there. I have less and less urge to understand why and look for an answer. My focus seems to be shifting to making sure that he and I both understand how we can prevent this from happening to us again.
For my part I know having been a BS now and seen the impact of the pain that it causes to a BS I could NEVER be a WW now. Not to say that I was planning on ever being one but before I learned of the intensity of the pain and destruction it causes in a marriage I feel any one can be succusptible to going down that path when a selfish oppurtunity presents itself. Now having witnessed firsthand the impact if I have leaned nothing else I have learned this :
1) An A does not solve anything
2) An A causes more pain and destruction for the BS than any other situation I can imagine.
3) Recovery from an A is HARD
4) The WS pays a huge price for the relatively small amount of "happiness" in the bubble of an A , by having to watch the BS suffer and feel enormous guilt and shame for their part in it.
5) If the WS leaves the M and decides to make a go of it with OP then only 3% of those relationships survie, not great odds of finding long term happiness with OP.

Its unfortunate that this learning comes after an A and not before. I think if my DH absorbed some of the same info then the chances that he might go down that path again are slim.


 Quote:
Maybe when you reach the point of not talking about the "affair" so much, and focusing on talking about THE MARRIAGE, AND IMPROVING IT TOGETHER, you can help your husbands move forward. And in the process, help yourselves, too.


Funny last night thats what my H tried to conevy to me as calmly as he could. I think when I can do that not let the thoughts of an A occupy my mind all day long then I know I have made progress. Or even better if I can learn to ignore those thoughts and change my focus to other things that is great too until the thoughts stop ocuuring natrually.
Obvioulsy I must be "getting something " by allowing the thoughts to stay front and formost in my mind all the time. I HAVE TO END MY OWN PITY PARTY ( woe is me) and start focuing on all the good things in my life and start "getting comfortable" with the notion that my life is good.


FBW(me)- 45
FWH- 53
D-day 4/29/08
Moving forward pursuing happiness & a loving Marriage with DH.
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 439
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OP Offline
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W
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 439
 Quote:
WMF, how's the timer working for you?


Hi Jlr
Have not seen you here in days, nice to see you again.

Fine you got me, I have still not started to impose the timer rule on myslef. I am a bad bad student !! I am standing the corner for now.

I promise the next time we have a talk I will try and it and see if it helps. I am such a talker and talker that I am afraid I will keep glancing back and forth all the and time ( from clock to H) and keep interuppting my DH more that I normally do and keep going like a freight train so as to get the words out before the bell ring. LOL can you picture the cartoon version of this, eyes darting back and forth, me speaking so fast that I am incoherrent,and then the timer running out while I am in the middle of a long word and I have to stop and them the heavy fast breathing takes over .... ROFLMAO \:D

I am working on staying out of marathon sessions but in addition to that I need to be working on reducing thr frequency of our A talks and increasing the frequency of our fun and happy R talks.
So I am listening and I appreciate you checking in and making sure that I am following the right rules of recovery \:\)


FBW(me)- 45
FWH- 53
D-day 4/29/08
Moving forward pursuing happiness & a loving Marriage with DH.
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