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Originally Posted By: teachergirl89
I have told H it was my decision, I accept the blame for it, and that I should have come to him about the emotional disconnect I felt prior to this relationship starting. There were contributing factors, but the choice was mine to make. None of the things that I experienced in childhood or during our marriage made it ok for me to go to the OM, but I cant undo whats been done. All I can do is try to make it right. Nobody made me do anything, and I wasnt looking for nor did I have any physical interactions with OM. H says he wished that it had been a stranger and had been a sexual affair instead of an emotional one, because it would be easier for him to get over that.

I didnt choose to have the feelings for OM. Having known him from the past, the emotional connection was quick to develop. I did choose the actions that put us in a bad situation, and I chose to begin and continue conversation with him. It truly was an addiction and was extremely difficult to break free from. OM didnt end it, I made the decision entirely on my own. It just took some time for me to get to the point that I was ready to do it. Ive always heard that alcoholics have to want to get better before they can benefit from therapy, and I can understand that now because in the midst of what happened I was not interested in stopping. Even though I saw what I was doing to my family, and I knew I shouldnt be talking to him, I couldnt and didnt want to stop. H tried his best to end it but until I chose to do so nothing anybody said mattered to me. Looking back now I realize many things I couldnt see at the time.


But you still cling to blameshifting and rationalizations. If I were your husband I would move on. Nothing short of "I completely screwed up and it is my fault entirely" is going to interest most BS's.

From reading your posts, it is clear to me he has made the right decision for now. Unless you can show some real remorse and take some accountability for your actions he is wise to stay away.


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

Exposure 101


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Originally Posted By: teachergirl89
I read in one of Dr. Harley's articles on this site that a spouse should not repeatedly bring up past events which harm the other and destroy love between them. We both are guilty of that, but he blasts me with it every time we are together.


But he is not interested in reconciling so why would he follow Marriage Builders?

TG, if you want to pull this out, you need to listen to us. You have given your H no reason to take you back. You would have to make a radical change in your attitude to get the interest of most spouses. What you have shown here isn't working. And we are trying to tell you why.


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

Exposure 101


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Originally Posted By: weaver

If they are in a place of villainizing their BS's, than they clearly are not seeking truth, change or repentence...they are still rationalizing. I think it's pretty easy for us all to spot the difference, nowadays.

I just always think of Cruise, and how suicidal he was when his affair partner turned wife started messing around on him. He was clearly a broken man. A man who had not cheated on and left his family would have survived, scarred no doubt, but survived. He took a path of self-destruction when he left his family, and when he could not make amends, even in his own mind, he saw no way to make right, no way to heal, no way to survive.

I can only look at these people with pity and sadness.

I would NEVER want to be the one causing pain on another...I can tell you it is MUCH better to be the receiver than the giver.

Why? Because I am strong. I am a survivor. But I am not strong enough to carry the cost of having done harm to another. Especially one I vowed to protect. Can you imagine the guilt seeking punishment, internally, of that?

Those that never realize what they have done? ... If she never realizes it, that will be the saddest thing of all, because she will never grow, never make amends, never become more than what she is. Every single day of her life is less, because of what she has done. HER LIFE IS LESS for what she has done. And how sad is that? What a waste. She could have inspired. She could have created. She could have chosen love, instead she chose to destroy.

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Originally Posted By: teachergirl89


I am here to ask for suggestions and advice about what I should/shouldnt be doing at this point.


Should not:

Wear your victim garments.
Originally Posted By: Pepperband




Victimhood is not going to raise your self esteem.



Should:

Make a list of your H's 7 most admirable qualities.
Use that list to write him a daily love letter for a week.
Expect nothing in return.

Admiration is usually a top 3 EN for our husbands.

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teachergirl --

True recovery (of yourself) requires you to take an inventory.
No excuses, no justifications.

I've been in your shoes. It's a painful process.
Be GRATEFUL to those that are here to help you truly see.
And you have some of the BEST people I know posting to you.

Once you have done this work, you will have a new approach to you husband. And it will be one that will let him see that you are not a danger to him anymore.

Be humble.

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My H had a EA/PA with his friend's wife.
It was hideous behavior on his part.
Hers too.

Why did I stay married to him?

He was advised by our counselor to say the following as often as necessary:

"I will do whatever it takes for as long as it takes to make this right."

And, he did.
Even when it was more than unpleasant, it was downright humbling.
He went to my family members and apologized.
He went to OW's H and apologized.
He went to our church leaders and apologized.
He humbled himself.
And in that way, he made returning to the marriage worth my consideration.

He was not perfect.
But, he was consistently making efforts to improve himself, not trying to improve me. (Which is what you are doing. Ugh)

Even today, 15.5 years into recovery, he says to me:

"Is there anything I can do for you today?"

I ask you, who would not stay with a man like that?

He's awesome ! loveheart

And ....
Click to reveal..


Monday is our 30 year anniversary
dance2



I am 100% certain my H would have liked an apology or two (or more) from me for my marriage blunders.
But, he was not enough of a jerk, or dumb doh2 enough, to ask/demand/require I apologize to him during the dark days after his affair.

I've made all my apologies after gaining insight and humility.

You seek advice?
Install some humility into your self talk.
Pray for insight.
And, apologize broadly.

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Originally Posted By: itistoughlove
Originally Posted By: weaver

Those that never realize what they have done? ... If she never realizes it, that will be the saddest thing of all, because she will never grow, never make amends, never become more than what she is. Every single day of her life is less, because of what she has done. HER LIFE IS LESS for what she has done. And how sad is that? What a waste. She could have inspired. She could have created. She could have chosen love, instead she chose to destroy.


clap

I may never be able to make amends to my H. But I will get through this. I will teach my daughters not to make the same mistakes that I made. I will teach them that when they gain the love and the trust of an honorable, decent man that they are to treasure that, because it is more valuable than gold. I will teach them that nothing on this earth is worth degrading yourself for. If I cannot be a wife to him then I will learn to be a better woman and mother for my own sake, and more importantly the sake of our children, who he still entrusts me with.

teach, you do what you can to meet his needs. He behaves erratically? What else would you expect? He has triggers all throughout the day, some that you might be able to identify (and therefore try to avoid in the future) and some that you have no idea about...and some that are so ingrained in daily life that they are nearly impossible to avoid. Yes, he does need to learn to deal with his emotions and his triggers - regardless of what happens with your M - but he cannot be made to deal with those on your timetable!

You say you have taken responsibility for what you've done, but until you realize that the state of your M and your decision to have an A are completely independent from each other, then you haven't taken responsibility.

Here's what you do. You still see your H when you exchange the children. He still eats dinner with you as a family. During those times, look your best. Be warm and friendly. Cook things he likes to eat. If he lashes out at you, do not lash back. That doesn't mean stand there and take verbal abuse, but respectfully extricate yourself from the situation. I'm sure you've heard of "active listening" and the process of validation? A simple:

"Im sorry you feel that way. Thank you for being honest with me."
"I am sorry that I failed to protect you."
"I am committed to a new life with you."


Then boom, drop it, end of story. No rationalization, nothing further. At some point you can possibly reintroduce MB to him as a plan to restore the love between you and to rebuild your marriage. But he must see the changes in you before he will be open to that. And that may willtake some time - how much time, is anyone's guess.

I went crazy clingy nutso when my H left. I was sending flowers, gifts, cards, CD's of love songs, you name it. I backed off. It doesn't mean I love him less - I'm just trying not to push him away by being overwhelming. I suggest things that we can do together - sometimes he takes me up on them, sometimes not. I will give him little things every once in a while just because I see something and I think of him. I do not bring up our relationship and I try my best to avoid LB'ing him. I do my best to meet the needs he allows me to meet.

But in doing so, you have to come to the decision that your marriage - your H - is worth fighting for. It is not easy. You will not get all your needs met (and if you are still saying that you had an A b/c you didn't get your needs met, then what are you gonna do???). You will deal with people IRL who will tell you to move on. It is hard, and it can be lonely, and if you've read my thread you know I struggle. You will have to deal with frequent rejection. Some days you will feel completely hopeless. Trust me - I have NOT gotten it right yet!!!! But he's worth it to me. Someday, I hope he sees that...but I have to accept the fact that it may never happen. But that doesn't mean I stop trying.


FWW

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

He is a very stubborn man and has always had difficulty saying Im sorry or admitting when hes made a mistake.


Observation:

The above quote is an example of a *** disrespectful judgment *** love buster. (LB)

You're angry at him.
I get it.
He's made mistakes.
I get it.
He has poor marriage skills.
I get it.

And? Now what?
We can make a list of every wrong thing your BH has done over the years.
And? Now what?

He's still rejecting you because you pose a threat and a danger to him.

He may very well admit one mistake, if you're not careful.

He may say: "I made a mistake when I married you."
shocked

He's angry at you.
You've made mistakes.
You have poor marriage skills.

Here is a starting point for you to correct some of your mistakes !

Quote:
Disrespectful Judgments


When requests don't get you what you want, and demands don't work either, our instincts and habits often provide us with another controlling and abusive strategy -- disrespectful judgments. Without a doubt, demands are abusive, but disrespectful judgments often make demands seem merciful in comparison.

In the final analysis, disrespectful judgments represent an effort to force our spouses to give us what we want in marriage, but it's often cleverly disguised. Instead of making an outright demand, we present our problem as if it were really our spouse's personal shortcoming. We try to "straighten out" our spouse in an effort to get our way.

At the time we rationalize our disrespect by convincing ourselves that we're doing our spouses a big favor, to lift them from the darkness of their confusion into the light of our superior perspective. If they would only follow our advice, we tell ourselves, they could avoid many of life's pitfalls-and we would also get what we want.



Eliminate the LB of disrespectful judgments (DJ) in your marriage.
I am convinced you are a master at the "helpful" DJ.
naughty

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Pepper-

My FWH says the same thing- he just started saying it a few months, and he never fails to ask it, every day. "What can I do for you today? How can I help you? What do you need?"

It has been one of the simplest, and most powerful things he has done to help us.

Teachergirl should pay attention.


Thanks for all the support along the way.
I wish you all well. I'm outta here.
Peace.
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Originally Posted By: RidicSit
Pepper-

My FWH says the same thing- he just started saying it a few months, and he never fails to ask it, every day. "What can I do for you today? How can I help you? What do you need?"

It has been one of the simplest, and most powerful things he has done to help us.

Teachergirl should pay attention.


This makes me very happy.
kiss

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WPG, nice post.
hurray
I'd like to tweak one thing.

"I'm sorry you feel that way" .... Can sometimes feel like a judgment on the spouse's feelings. It can be interpreted as ~~~> "You should not feel that way" , even if that meaning is not intended.

It's better (safer) to say: "I understand your feelings."
Or, "I know you are hurting".

Those are less likely to cause more friction.
I know because, in the past, I've caused damage by saying: "I'm sorry you feel that way."

(((( WPG )))) <~~~ I KNOW you're hurting. I am rooting for you!

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Originally Posted By: teachergirl89
We separated for about 6 months, during which time I did date another person. I chose to leave, he begged me to stay but he wouldn't admit so I just couldn't.


Can we back up a little bit?

Who was this man that you dated during the time you moved out? Did you know him prior to your moving out?


Ddays 2007 and 2011
Plan B 6/21/11
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How to Plan B Correctly
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Thanks, Pep! Yeah, I was trying to think of good examples of validating someone's feelings without making DJs. And I've been where teachergirl is at - I made a lot of "helpful" DJs over the years. I went back and looked at my notes from my sessions w/JC and she had given me some good advice along the lines of avoiding DJs - Anytime I try to educate H, lecture him, give unsolicited advice, make You should/We should statements, Why dont you statements (e.g., Why dont you want to give this a try?) or Dont you know statements...that I need to realize that basically what I am saying to him is, Hey, stupid! doh2


FWW

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

I have so much I want to say to you but others are doing such a terrific job. I especially want to acknowledge WPG and Pepperband since they are helping me even as I am much further down the path than you.

Our situations are outstandingly similar. I will refrain from giving advice as the others are so much better than me. What I can offer is where I am now... 21 months from Dday

We are still together. His outbursts are less and his erratic behavior has disappated. He has made some positive changes in his life such has learning about Christianity and acknowledging an ongoing depression. He spends more time with the children and me.

He still brings up the affair, he still gets moody, he still gets mean. He still doesn't follow through on things and blames me for his problems.

For my part, I behave as I want my children to behave. I do not blame him for any action I take or choose not to take.

Often my kids will come home after doing something wrong with...the "he made me" or "she was doing it so I had to." I cut them off immediately and let them know...YOU choose your actions regardless of circumstances.

I am practicing the same with myself. If he is nasty and mean to me, I do not respond in kind. If he negelects to do something I ask, I do not withhold from him.

I tell him about my feelings and my life and my dreams. Sometimes, he chooses to engage and sometimes he ignores me. I tell him when he hurts me but I do not hurt him back.

I don't know if he'll stay forever...sometimes he says he will, he loves me...other times he says he is waiting for the kids to grow up and....even other times he mentions finding someone else who wouldn't cheat on him. I validate these feelings. I tell him I will fight for our marriage but I do not blame him.

You are looking too far into the future and trying to predict how he will respond....you just can't. Don't try to educate him. Just be the person you want to be.

He may see the changes and adust his stance, or he may never realize the changes. You can't control that.

I feel so free now because I have nothing to hide....not just the affair, I was always walking on eggshells...I still do sometimes but now I tell the truth and deal with the consequences... the same lesson I am teaching my kids.

Wow, this was longer than I expected. I hope you stick around.

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Originally Posted By: wulffpack_girl
- Anytime I try to educate H, lecture him, give unsolicited advice, make You should/We should statements, Why dont you statements (e.g., Why dont you want to give this a try?) or Dont you know statements...that I need to realize that basically what I am saying to him is, Hey, stupid! doh2



smirk

Been there.
Done that.
I still have to watch my mouth. naughty

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@ sunnydaze hurray

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