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Hi GM





Recovery began 10/07;

Meeting my wife's EN's is my "thank you" that refuses to be silenced.
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Originally Posted By: sexymamabear
Originally Posted By: GreenMile

I could tell she was agitated, worn out, and feeling uncomfortable before,




Do you understand why she was agitated?

When you do, the natural response would be....

compassion.



Quote:

and then she lowered the boom, accusing me of seeing and having sex with my old affair partner.




Does this not seem to you like a logical conclusion based on her personal experience?



Quote:

I tried to my best recollection to explain why things were moved around in the car,



I would appreciate more detail here, GM. Exactly what explanation...or explanations....did you offer?

Were they truthful?



Quote:

but she became angrier and angrier and more accusative.



What do you think caused her more anger?



Quote:

I had had a bad rehearsal and was tired and agitated myself, and I became defensive. That made her worse, which caused me to become angry instead of lovingly supportive.



See my response above...

When you understand WHY she was already agitated, your response will be very different than defensive.



Quote:

I have made a lot of progress in the last year (I think), and we have been resuming MB lessons.



Progress over the last year...or last 10 years...will mean very little to a BS who is faced with a situation where it appears their FWH may have been unfaithful yet again.

We were gaslighted, tricked, and manipulated before. We are no longer naive enough to think it not possible to once again be gaslighted, tricked and manipulated.




Quote:

I suggested that she call our director in the morning to confirm I was at the rehearsal, but her anger and agitation just accelerated and pushed me into a state of frustration, and I became defensive.


It might have been more helpful to provide the proof yourself. I don't know...ask DWG's LATER if that would have helped her at all.



Quote:

I had been doing much better handling these episodes, but this just knocked her waaay back.



This should tell you something...

What?




Quote:

I don't know how to make myself stop getting defensive and make myself become calm, comforting, and reassuring,




I do....

STOP IT!




Quote:

especially when I am not at my best because of any frustrating circumstances going on at the time.



If your music rehearsals are causing you to become frustrated and aggravated, and causing DWG to be triggered, why do you participate in them?




Quote:
How do I help her and make her understand that I am not the guy I was all those years,



By not being that guy.

Defensiveness IS that guy.

She's seen it many times before over the years, hasn't she, GM? So you ARE THAT guy when you respond to her hurt with defensiveness.

Her conclusion was very logical IMO. I would have come to the same conclusion if in the same situation tst responded to me defensively.

A defensive person is often acting that way because they are hiding something.


Quote:

that I have EP's in place that are sacrosanct to me, and that I can be trusted?



Let me point out the obvious. Or at least, it is the obvious to any BS.

A FWS can have the most stellar EPs in place, and can at any moment decide to ignore them.

When tst goes to work, I KNOW that he COULD choose to meet up with OW on any given day. Just now he called to ask if I was comfortable with him stopping by a friend's business to check on him while on his way home from work. I admit, it causes me a twinge of panic as I contemplate...is he telling me the truth? I mean, these are the same types of excuses he came up with during the affair.

A BS's reality is that IF the FWS ever decides to get involved with OW, they CAN find a way...and still appear to be living within EPs.

So, no, I don't even consider stellar EPs as a pass to be "automatically trusted".



Quote:

How do I not become sad and frightened, when I am accused of being dishonest, even though it is a logical fear she has because of those many terrible years?


GM, the only answer is to CHOOSE to not be that and then you ACT upon your choice. She is making very logical conclusions, whether they are correct or not.





Those are all great questions, SMB. Good to hear from you. I don't know whether to try to actually answer all of them or merely say that your points are definitely understood and well-taken. But being the wordy guy that I am, I will try.

"Do you understand why she was agitated? "

I think it is stressful for her, whenever I am away for a couple of hours. Perfectly understandable. I do understand. She wants me to be able to continue to play music, because she is a musician in the symphony and knows what it would mean for me to give it up. I have been playing since I was 9 years old. That's 53 years. I did tell her that she seemed agitated and asked her what was wrong. I did that in a compassionate way, I thought, I and I was truly concerned.

"Does this not seem to you like a logical conclusion based on her personal experience?"

Of course, though our rehearsal schedules and are total calendars are known and shared, and she knows I have a concert coming up. She did not express any of those feelings when I left, and when was driving home and called her to see if she would like me to pick up some food for her to eat, she seemed fine. What triggered her was the way things had been moved around in the car. I had moved the binocs, so that my music stand would not hurt them, but was confused by her agitation about that and did not remember why I had put them in the back seat, so I hmmed and hawed trying to remember exactly why I had moved them. That seemed very suspicious to her. Some junk mail was on the floor in front, and she remembered it being tucked next to the seat. I did not remember when they fell all over the floorboard, and my answer must have seemed evasive...because I did not really know and tried to explain it logically rather than saying, "I'm not sure".

"What do you think caused her more anger?"

My defensive and incomplete answers to why things were moved around in the car ( I really could not answer specifically). She immediately accused me of cheating rather than going to rehearsal. Then I became really defensive, because it had been a bad and difficult rehearsal. Our lead trumpet was sick, and I had to play lead, and I am not a high note player. It was a disaster LOL. Plus they were all new charts, and I was sight reading everything, which is not my best thing. I was stressed and embarrassed even before I got home. I think that answers another of your questions. Overall, I love playing in that band. I play mainly mid-range harmony and a lot of solos (improv).

My explanations for why the binocs and the mail were where they were were uncertain and seemed evasive. This made her certain of her suspicions, and I knew we were in for a long bad episode and trigger. At that point, I became very upset instead of steady and loving and reassuring. On any other evening, I probably would have handled it much better, but I was definitely not in my best frame of mind. I reverted to my old patterns and became angry and agitated and told her that I would quit the band. I became the victim. I was definitely at my worst at that point, and she responded as would be expected for someone who was victimized by ME all those years. That seemed to reinforce her suspicions and convinced her of my untruthfulness and of her own suspicions. SMB, I know I handled this very poorly. I did all the wrong things.

"Progress over the last year...or last 10 years...will mean very little to a BS who is faced with a situation where it appears their FWH may have been unfaithful yet again.

We were gaslighted, tricked, and manipulated before. We are no longer naive enough to think it not possible to once again be gaslighted, tricked and manipulated."

Oh, I do understand. Totally. I built this myself. I own it. I have to deal with it. Really, SMB. I understand that. It doesn't make it any easier.

"This should tell you something...

What?"

It reminds me how wounded and fragile I have made her.

"I do....

STOP IT!"

At those times, I need faith and the strength that it affords. I am not there yet, obviously. You make it sound easy. It is not, not for me,,,not yet. But the next time this happens, I will settle myself and remember your words. I have read TST's wisdom and advice over and over on this. The simplest sounding things can be the hardest. But I know that I have to do it, or there will be no recovery.

"By not being that guy.

Defensiveness IS that guy.

She's seen it many times before over the years, hasn't she, GM? So you ARE THAT guy when you respond to her hurt with defensiveness.

Her conclusion was very logical IMO. I would have come to the same conclusion if in the same situation tst responded to me defensively.

A defensive person is often acting that way because they are hiding something."

I do understand that. Still, it is such a catch-22 to try to answer questions or accusations completely and honestly when that history is there. Every truth becomes another source for suspicion. Every attempt at explanation sounds like a cover-up. But to not answer or attempt to explain would seem to be worse, would it not? It is truly a no-win. That is the hardest and saddest thing of all.

"Let me point out the obvious. Or at least, it is the obvious to any BS.

A FWS can have the most stellar EPs in place, and can at any moment decide to ignore them.

When tst goes to work, I KNOW that he COULD choose to meet up with OW on any given day. Just now he called to ask if I was comfortable with him stopping by a friend's business to check on him while on his way home from work. I admit, it causes me a twinge of panic as I contemplate...is he telling me the truth? I mean, these are the same types of excuses he came up with during the affair.

A BS's reality is that IF the FWS ever decides to get involved with OW, they CAN find a way...and still appear to be living within EPs.

So, no, I don't even consider stellar EPs as a pass to be "automatically trusted".

I understand, SMB, though at the time, I did not remember this. I have certain tools at my disposal, certain strengths that I can use to be the person I feel that I am now. I am grateful for those tools and strengths, because they are my life's blood. I have to put enormous weight and trust in them. If I think of them as you describe, they cannot be that for me. This is one where I have to keep in mind your experience and DWG's experience to appreciate why this is so difficult to trust for the BS. But I cannot allow myself to lose faith in those things. I just can't. Neither can TST.

I wish I could go way back. Back before I was married. When I was still a child, and fix these things before they created pain and tragedy. But I can't. But I do have a strong will, at least, and I am confident of my ability to be a loving, honest husband who will heal the wounds I have caused and make a new life, with years of happiness. I can and will do this. I suppose that is what you mean by simply saying DO IT.

Thanks, SMB, and please give my best to TST. He has been so helpful to me.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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As a recovered addict, I just have to say that EP's don't help unless you are attending a 12-step or SA program.

Someone quoted Romans 7:15-24

Romans 7:15-24 (New International Version)
15I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[a] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to dothis I keep on doing. 20Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

21So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22For in my inner being I delight in God's law; 23but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?

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Originally Posted By: lurioosi2
I am relatively new compared to the sages on here, but I am a FWW, almost 4 years out from D-Day. And we went through a lot of the hills and valleys you describe (I guess everyone does). One thing that helped me was to understand that when DH triggered and worried about what I might be doing or who I might be talking to, he was responding to the hell I had put him through, not always how hard I was trying right at that moment. In other words, just because he triggered did not mean I was not changing, and just because I was changing did not mean he would not trigger. In my mind, I KNEW I was completely repentant and doing everything I could to repair our marriage. In his mind, I was the only woman he had ever been with, the one he trusted, and the one who slept with his daughter's guitar teacher. He still couldn't really be sure WHO I was yet.

I wish I could point to a magic date and say on THIS day the affair stopped being a major mile marker in our M. It just got better, two steps forward one step back. And for awhile now, though it is something terrible that I did in the past, it isn't something that hangs in the air.

On those days when everything I did reminded DH of what I had done, I learned to try to see our journey through his eyes and to say "I am so sorry that I have caused you to have to endure this. I want to do whatever it takes for as long as it takes to make things right. Tell me what you need or need to know, and I will move heaven and earth to get there." Yes, DH still got angry and distant and sad at times, but he knew I was there, ready for whatever he needed me to do.

I hope that's helpful.


Yes, it is! Thank you so much.

- GM


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Originally Posted By: believer
As a recovered addict, I just have to say that EP's don't help unless you are attending a 12-step or SA program.

Someone quoted Romans 7:15-24

Romans 7:15-24 (New International Version)
15I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[a] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to dothis I keep on doing. 20Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

21So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22For in my inner being I delight in God's law; 23but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?





I guess Nipsy Russell said it less scripturally but no less biblically: "The devil made me do it." I used to laugh at that line. Now I know why. It was an example of using the conflict between good an evil within all of us to justify evil. Well, I don't and can't cater to, or "laugh" at that kind of thing any more. It makes no difference what truths any prophet or any disciple might have written in the bible or anywhere else other than as a nice description of the inner struggle we all face and learn to deal with in one way or another. For me, SMB probably sums it up the simplest. "Just DO IT." Do the right thing, and it will become its own reward in life, not in some afterlife. Hell is a place we go right here where we are living on this Earth, when we make the wrong choices. I have gotten myself there, and I intend to claw my way out. At the tender age of 62, I understand what it takes. Just DO IT.

Please don't take my response as an argument or a judgement of the scripture you quote. Those quotes are obviously profound. Thank you for them. The choice remains within this life, I am sure you would agree, but the consequences and rewards are, too IMO. I will be making the right ones. Of that, I have no doubts.

- GM


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Originally Posted By: believer
Good to see you posting again!

This is an easy one. Offer to take a lie detector test.



DWG knows I am ready for that at any time. In this case, calling the director of the band would be a lot cheaper LOL!


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Oh, that's just may favorite scripture because it applies to me.

Unfortunately, an addict usually can't claw their way out.

But of course you know that. I think that is Step One in a 12-step program.

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Originally Posted By: tst
Hi GM


Hi, TST!


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Originally Posted By: believer
Oh, that's just may favorite scripture because it applies to me.

Unfortunately, an addict usually can't claw their way out.

But of course you know that. I think that is Step One in a 12-step program.



Believe me, I do! I have thought long and hard about whether my infidelity was an addiction. I do know about addiction and worked the steps for a chemical addiction in the 1980's. I attended meetings for at least two years. I never worked all of them, but I gained control and stopped the disease.

In my case, the dynamics of my infidelity don't really fit an addiction for me. It did in some ways, but not really in most. I am not saying it doesn't for some people, but I don't believe that was it for me. It was entitlement, immaturity, and resentment. Lying became a habit, for sure, and I became more and more adept at it to the point where it was fluid and natural. But when the need to lie was removed, and the excuses and lies were stopped as a result, so did the habit. Now, just like last night with the rehearsal episode, sometimes even telling the truth feels like lying, because it sounds like one. Lying itself is an incredibly destructive habit, but there is no withdrawal from stopping it, only reward. I am told that there is actually a form of addictive lying for its own sake, so-called pathological lying, and the textbooks list several categories of that. I know of some people who fit those categories over the years. Fortunately, neither the infidelity nor the lying was a true addiction. A disease of the soul, yes.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Well, I'm no expert. So take my advice with a grain of salt. I say you are still an addict, just changed your drug of choice.

I really hope you will complete a 12-step program, because I like you.

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GM
You going out alone in the evening triggers BW.

Is this when you saw the OW?

Did the OW play in the same band as you?

Did you use playing music as a cover for seeing the OW?

Do you need the income from being in this band or is it just a side job?

If you do not need or get income from this band then it's time to say goodbye to the band.

Why?

Because you danced and now have to pay the band. You had an affair. Many things have to be given up after an affair thats the price for stepping out.

You going out alone is triggering BW so you are going to have to stop doing things that trigger her.

As trust gets restored after a few years maybe BW will not trigger if you want to play in a band again.

But for now for get about it.

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Originally Posted By: believer
Well, I'm no expert. So take my advice with a grain of salt. I say you are still an addict, just changed your drug of choice.

I really hope you will complete a 12-step program, because I like you.



I like you too, Believer. I think it would be of benefit, for sure, to complete a program, starting at the beginning again. And you might be right about me. I just don't really know.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Originally Posted By: TheRoad
GM
You going out alone in the evening triggers BW.

Is this when you saw the OW?

Did the OW play in the same band as you?

Did you use playing music as a cover for seeing the OW?

Do you need the income from being in this band or is it just a side job?

If you do not need or get income from this band then it's time to say goodbye to the band.

Why?

Because you danced and now have to pay the band. You had an affair. Many things have to be given up after an affair thats the price for stepping out.

You going out alone is triggering BW so you are going to have to stop doing things that trigger her.

As trust gets restored after a few years maybe BW will not trigger if you want to play in a band again.

But for now for get about it.


No, that was a daytime thing for me. But in the early years, when things first got bad (because of me, I realize), I would go to prostitutes at night before coming home after a visit to another city to see my parents every few months, and at professional meetings when out of town. I was a mess, seriously. I had already ruined my marriage, and I justified it as a last resort thing rather than work on my problems to fix my marriage. None of the encounters, nor the affair were related in any way to my music. I have cut out all other activities and am retired from work. DWG and I spend virtually all of our time together. We have even joined the same organizations and travel to those meetings together. Since DWG is a concert clarinetist, she knows all the musicians in town, and my rehearsals are all with people she knows. So, that part isn't a problem. There are no triggers from the music. My parents are dead, so I never go to visit relatives without her.


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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As children bring their broken toys

With tears for us to mend.

I brought my broken dreams to God

Because He was my friend.

But then instead of leaving Him

In peace to work alone,

I hung around and tried to help

With ways that were my own.

At last I snatched them back and cried,

How can you be so slow?

My child, He said

What could I do?

You never did let go.


One of my favorite poems.......

GM, you are still trying to control outcomes. We desire to control outcomes in order for US to look and feel good. Our selfishness drives this desired outcome. It's a selfish habit!

When DWG starts to spiral down quickly, it appears you are still grasping for a good answer, maybe even lies, in order to help change her course and stop the spiral... When all she wants and needs is an honest answer. She may continue to spiral, but you must remain... Honest and Calm! Reassuring and Calm! Peaceful and Calm! Loving and Calm!

Did I mention Calm?


You might want to remember that when you cry out, "look at everything I've done". What DWG is doing, is looking at EVERYTHING you have done.

{{{{{{{{DWG & GM}}}}}}}}}}}





Recovery began 10/07;

Meeting my wife's EN's is my "thank you" that refuses to be silenced.
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GM,

Just a point to think about. The devil doesn't make anyone do anything, ever. He can't compel anyone to sin, yet we all do.

What the devil offered to Eve and Adam in the garden was the right and power to choose for themselves what was right and what was wrong. It is thinking we have the right to make that decision that is at the heart of sin, all sin.

The devil is not the evil version of God, is not omnipotent nor omnipresent nor omniscient nor able to produce physicality on his own. He therefor cannot and never could compel us to do anything against our will. WE choose to take his bait and do what he wants us to do even though we know from the beginning that he wants us to do it so that it might destroy us in the end.

Now as for the practical...

You and DWG need to spend more time together, meeting the intimate emotional needs of each other and less time involved in any activity that reminds either of you of the days of betrayal of the past. I won't say "quit playing music" but would rather ask, "what would you do if she asked you to stop playing music?"

All of MB hinges on one assumption. That is the assumption that whatever we do, it affects our spouse in some way and the effect is either a positive emotional response or a negative response. This is not only true of things that we know might cause an emotional reaction but also of things we never considered before. What we have for lunch when we are sitting alone at work might be a trigger for a negative reaction and if some affair time trigger or past moral failure trigger is related to something we continue to do, then every time we do that thing we are causing our spouse to relive that pain all over again, not just figuratively but literally since the same emotional content of the original event is present in the recalling of the memory of that event.

The two halves of the Love Bank equation are to make deposits so that our spouse loves us and to avoid Love buster that make withdrawals to maximize the balance in our account so that they continue to love us.

It takes both halves for MB to work. We have to maximize the deposits and minimize the withdrawals and no matter what we do, we are doing one or the other of those two things.

Even things we do that we think should have no effect do have an effect, even when we don't see it right away.

Whenever we find ourselves falling into conflict or having a difficult time resolving some issue, our first order of business is to examine our UA time and ramp it up a bit with a focus on meeting the 4 intimate emotional needs.

And just so you know, the sudden loss of trust was probably not even related to the incident it centered around. It probably happened way before that and caused a twinge of fear about getting the whole truth and then on top of that came this binocular thing and the stopping on the way home and the mail on the floor...

Knowing how things run around here, look really hard at IB on your part concerning anything at all. Have you done anything at all recently that might have indicated that you were not taking DWG's feelings into account even for a moment in time?

Mark

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Originally Posted By: tst
As children bring their broken toys

With tears for us to mend.

I brought my broken dreams to God

Because He was my friend.

But then instead of leaving Him

In peace to work alone,

I hung around and tried to help

With ways that were my own.

At last I snatched them back and cried,

How can you be so slow?

My child, He said

What could I do?

You never did let go.


One of my favorite poems.......

GM, you are still trying to control outcomes. We desire to control outcomes in order for US to look and feel good. Our selfishness drives this desired outcome. It's a selfish habit!

When DWG starts to spiral down quickly, it appears you are still grasping for a good answer, maybe even lies, in order to help change her course and stop the spiral... When all she wants and needs is an honest answer. She may continue to spiral, but you must remain... Honest and Calm! Reassuring and Calm! Peaceful and Calm! Loving and Calm!

Did I mention Calm?


You might want to remember that when you cry out, "look at everything I've done". What DWG is doing, is looking at EVERYTHING you have done.

{{{{{{{{DWG & GM}}}}}}}}}}}


I talked to DWG tonight. She didn't want to. In fact, she was mad that I needed to find out what it was that I had done. She is bone tired of having to spell out to me what any five year old with responsible parents should already have a grasp of. That is exactly what it was. I mean EXACTLY. I wonder if it is too late to grow up at 62. I suppose for occasional people that is a major accomplishment. My time has come. There is a terrific LP that Herbie Hancock wrote and recorded decades ago. The album is called "Speak Like a Child". One of the tunes on it is called "Goodbye to Childhood". I thought I had said goodbye long ago, but I never did. I never let go. It is time. Better late than never, TST. Your poem was on the money and has touched me profoundly. It is exactly what I was looking for. I knew I could count on you. Thanks...with all my heart.

- GM


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Originally Posted By: Mark1952
GM,

Just a point to think about. The devil doesn't make anyone do anything, ever. He can't compel anyone to sin, yet we all do.

What the devil offered to Eve and Adam in the garden was the right and power to choose for themselves what was right and what was wrong. It is thinking we have the right to make that decision that is at the heart of sin, all sin.

The devil is not the evil version of God, is not omnipotent nor omnipresent nor omniscient nor able to produce physicality on his own. He therefor cannot and never could compel us to do anything against our will. WE choose to take his bait and do what he wants us to do even though we know from the beginning that he wants us to do it so that it might destroy us in the end.

Now as for the practical...

You and DWG need to spend more time together, meeting the intimate emotional needs of each other and less time involved in any activity that reminds either of you of the days of betrayal of the past. I won't say "quit playing music" but would rather ask, "what would you do if she asked you to stop playing music?"

All of MB hinges on one assumption. That is the assumption that whatever we do, it affects our spouse in some way and the effect is either a positive emotional response or a negative response. This is not only true of things that we know might cause an emotional reaction but also of things we never considered before. What we have for lunch when we are sitting alone at work might be a trigger for a negative reaction and if some affair time trigger or past moral failure trigger is related to something we continue to do, then every time we do that thing we are causing our spouse to relive that pain all over again, not just figuratively but literally since the same emotional content of the original event is present in the recalling of the memory of that event.

The two halves of the Love Bank equation are to make deposits so that our spouse loves us and to avoid Love buster that make withdrawals to maximize the balance in our account so that they continue to love us.

It takes both halves for MB to work. We have to maximize the deposits and minimize the withdrawals and no matter what we do, we are doing one or the other of those two things.

Even things we do that we think should have no effect do have an effect, even when we don't see it right away.

Whenever we find ourselves falling into conflict or having a difficult time resolving some issue, our first order of business is to examine our UA time and ramp it up a bit with a focus on meeting the 4 intimate emotional needs.

And just so you know, the sudden loss of trust was probably not even related to the incident it centered around. It probably happened way before that and caused a twinge of fear about getting the whole truth and then on top of that came this binocular thing and the stopping on the way home and the mail on the floor...

Knowing how things run around here, look really hard at IB on your part concerning anything at all. Have you done anything at all recently that might have indicated that you were not taking DWG's feelings into account even for a moment in time?

Mark


Thanks, Mark.

As a retired guy, DWG and I spend 99% of our waking hours together, and part of the reason there is even any chance for us to recover after my behavior and her experience of that for so long is because we do spend literally all of our time together. How much is UA time? I don't know. But I would guess close to twice the 15 hours per week that is the MB minimum. Since we are both musicians (she is a symphonic clarinetist), she is loath to ask me to give up the Jazz Workshop. For both of us, playing has been literally our life's blood. I have offered to quit many times in the year and a half since D-Day, especially because my involvement as administrative director of a jazz festival was the cover for 90% of my lies during my affair. But she won't hear of it. She even joined our board in order to allow me to try to revive the festival in this awful economy. Still, I am running out of energy and passion for it largely because of my own guilt at what my life had become. I am committed to playing our scheduled summer concerts. I think at that point, I may very well stop, especially if it is a source of anxiety for her, no matter what she says. Nothing is really important to me any more accept for her and our two grown boys. Not surprisingly, they are both great jazz musicians. Our youngest is leaving for New York City next month to spend at least a decade there developing his skills in that milieu. Part of DWG's emotional hair trigger state right now is because of his leaving this region, and it is part of mine, as well. In fact, she is nearly a basket case over his leaving, though he has lived in a city 60 miles away for the last 5 years, making his reputation and becoming one of the best. That is the thing missing from my thread and hers, but it explains why we both are so emotional and volatile right now. Because of the long problems in our marriage, her relationship with our sons has been the thread holding her soul and sanity together. It is a huge loss for her. They are both great young men because of the values they learned from her.

- GM

Last edited by GreenMile; 06/30/10 01:21 AM.

FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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This is good, that you recognize you must give some things up because they will always be triggers for DWG even if she tells you that they are not.

You are a year older than my grandfather when he died, so I suppose this is why I say what I say next.

Treat every day with DWG like a gift. You never know when it will be taken away by cancer or a sudden heart attack, or any number of things.


Perhaps you two can do something like play a song together, or something, and Youtube it if you're computer savvy.


One year becomes two, two years becomes five, five becomes ten and before you know it, you've wasted your whole life on a problem you can't solve. That's one way to spend your life. -rwinger

I will not spend my life this way.
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Originally Posted By: karmasrose
This is good, that you recognize you must give some things up because they will always be triggers for DWG even if she tells you that they are not.

You are a year older than my grandfather when he died, so I suppose this is why I say what I say next.

Treat every day with DWG like a gift. You never know when it will be taken away by cancer or a sudden heart attack, or any number of things.


Perhaps you two can do something like play a song together, or something, and Youtube it if you're computer savvy.


Thanks, Kamarose!


FWH, age 63. 24 years of narcissistic behavior, infidelity, and emotional abandonment of my BS, age 57, DancesWithGoats (DWG). D-day two years ago, leading to emotional breakdown. Been working MB program and toward spiritual transformation and personal growth since then, with some slow but real progress. DWG still with no trust, but with grief starting to subside a bit.
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Quote:


There is a terrific LP that Herbie Hancock wrote and recorded decades ago. The album is called "Speak Like a Child". One of the tunes on it is called "Goodbye to Childhood". I thought I had said goodbye long ago, but I never did. I never let go. It is time. Better late than never, TST. Your poem was on the money and has touched me profoundly. It is exactly what I was looking for. I knew I could count on you. Thanks




I sense you are within hollering distance to profound insight.
You are an intelligent man.
You are intelligent enough to recognize you have been an emotional imbecile.
Your IQ is high. Your EQ is very low.
Your emotional responses to DWG have been child-like .... How long?
Forever?
Her disapproval hits you as if you were five years old.

As a mature man, her disapproval will strike you as an opportunity to learn and grow, not as some "you've been a bad boy" punishment.

Doc, you are close to a breakthrough.
Watch for it.

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