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My feelings after my wife cheated on me

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JohnDeux
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by JohnDeux » Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:00 pm

Skex wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:44 am
Yeah I've been on the receiving end of a betrayal so I have a pretty good idea of what your husband is going through. The difference is that my wife pulled her head out of her ass and took responsibility for her stupidity.

...I just happen to save the bulk of my empathy for the victims of abuse rather than the perpetrators and enablers of such.

I'm not here about anger about being cheated on. I've processed that.....
Welcome, Skex.....given that you have processed the anger about being cheated on.....and I would be curious as to the general details of that cheating...I would be additionally curious to know of the circumstances that brought you here. Also, if your own situation with your wife is what brought you to the forum, what kinds of things is she doing now that you would stay constitutes "pulling her head out of her ass"? This kinds of information is helpful to all involved as they examine their own recovery.
"Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain...."~ The Wizard of Oz

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LisaTranscending
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by LisaTranscending » Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:59 pm

JohnDeux wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:00 pm
.given that you have processed the anger about being cheated on.
um...I don't think so. ~x(


as for that bulk of empathy going for the victims (and that comparison to rape victims was outrageous) in a consensual sexual relationship between two adult partners, to say that the cheated on partner in that relationship is a complete victim, or somehow deserves the bulk of empathy is naive, if not delusional. it seems to completely get the cheated on partner off the hook. I know for fact many frustrated (men or women) who "cheat" not just to get the attention of their partner who is oblivious (who is "cheating" them out of affection and love).....out of sheer frustration(and a loneliness that takes on the properties of gravity) for that lack of connection/communication. hard to throw rocks when one lives in a glass house.
Last edited by LisaTranscending on Tue Aug 08, 2017 3:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.

AMA210
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by AMA210 » Tue Aug 08, 2017 3:21 pm

The anger is clearly still being processed. May be compared to the anger I felt towards LO and that was processed for a long while, and now I have no anger towards him anymore. I am at the place of actually forgiving him because I realized that he is damaged, just like me, and he is simply not aware of the "why" of his behaviors. I cannot change him and I cannot force awareness unto him. We learn at our own pace what needs to be learned.
LE was 22 months...LO catalyst for awakening, in which I chose divorce (after 27 years of marriage)
Very happy and content with my new beginning

Skex
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by Skex » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:17 pm

LisaTranscending wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:59 pm
JohnDeux wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:00 pm
.given that you have processed the anger about being cheated on.
um...I don't think so.

as for that bulk of empathy going for the victims (and that comparison to rape victims was outrageous) in a consensual sexual relationship between two adult partners, to say that the cheated on partner in that relationship is a complete victim, or somehow deserves the bulk of empathy is naive, if not delusional. it seems to completely get the cheated on partner off the hook. I know for fact many frustrated (men or women) who "cheat" not just to get the attention of their partner who is oblivious (who is "cheating" them out of affection and love).....out of sheer frustration(and a loneliness that takes on the properties of gravity) for that lack of connection/communication. hard to throw rocks when one lives in a glass house.
The problem with your argument is that cheating isn't something that just happens between two consenting adults. Because you cannot have cheating in a situation where there are only two people involved. There are always at least three people involved. The faithful partner , the cheater and the affair partner. If the faithful partner consents its not cheating it is an open or poly relationship and by definition not cheating. So no cheating is not a consensual sexual arrangement between adults. And yes the cheated on is a complete victim in that situation. I don't care if they are the worst partner in the world the ethical answer to a bad relationship is to leave it, not to deceive people to keep them in it and go fuck around and do whatever you please risking STIs and angry spousal responses. No one makes another person cheat, cheating is a choice and one that the cheater despite all the rationalization and blame shifting they may engage in knows is wrong, how do I know that they know that it's wrong? Because they hide it. They want to get the rewards associated with a new relationship retaining the benefits of their old relationship, be those financial or whatever. They cheat because they want something and feel entitled to it but they don't wan to pay the price for getting it. The betrayed is the victim in this situation because they are the one who never gets a say because they aren't given access to the information to make an informed choice. That's what makes it abuse, the theft of power, the taking of control by controlling the flow of information.

When people cheat they deny the faithful partner the ability to consent or object to the change in relationship status. In the case of a physical affair they are exposed to additional health risks in the form of STIs, and cheaters get far more STIs than single people because they do not take proper precautions to avoid transmission. They tend to be foolish and trust in people of whom the only true thing they know about is that they are willing to engage in unethical behavior. And surprise surprise, people who are willing to lie to their "loved ones" are more than happy to lie to others.

Cheating also by its very nature involves a lot of other abusive behaviors not least of which is gaslighting when the cheater denies their affair and attempts to undermine their faithful partner's perception of reality in order to keep their dirty little secret and excert control to keep their faithful partner right where they want them.

Is it conscious and deliberate? Probably not in most cases, it's just the natural consequence of maintaining a deception in order to avoid consequences.

I compare cheating to rape and sexual abuse because they are the most similar things that people can relate to. In some ways it's worse than rape at least rape at the hands of a stranger as it's perpetrated by someone who you trust, who is supposed to have your back rather than some stranger who doesn't know you. I don't say this to diminish rape, but the most damaging part about rape is not the physical act itself, but rather the theft of power the taking of the right to consent to what is done with and to your body by force or coercion. I've actually read accounts of betrayed partners who were raped and most say that infidelity was worse.

I'm close to two years out from dday, but in the immediate aftermath of discovery my reaction was primal, uncontrollable shakes from the triggered adrenaline rush of my fight or flight reflex. Even now I am subject to waves of sadness that come and go at their own apparent will.

Not as a result of my choices or actions but because of something that someone else did.

My wife had her own FOO and rationalizations, and I'm not unsympathetic to them, our lives are stressful, we have a child on the spectrum which adds a whole other element to the stress in our lives, so I get the desire to escape it. And yeah I was not the perfect husband, but you know what she never did? what no cheater ever does? She never said "hey I'm unhappy and if we don't address it in a satisfactory manner I'm going to go fuck other men."

No instead she convinced herself that what I did not know wouldn't hurt me. Well on that she was wrong because even when I didn't know what she was doing I knew that something wasn't right, but because she was cheating instead of telling me what was wrong when I approached her about it she just brushed off my concerns which left me knowing something was wrong and trying desperately to fix things without the benefit of the information I'd need to do anything about it.

Then after dday she was not in a position to even ask for her concerns to be addressed because of the immediate damage that her choices resulted in. Not that I have ignored her legitimate concerns but I was not in a mental state to care because I was dealing with the aftermath of her betrayal.

As far what she did to pull her head out of her ass, she cut off contact with her fuck buddies, she became accountable for her location and actions, she shifted her focus from seeking external validation from others to focusing on our family, on me and our children and our lives together.

She is working on being the kind of person who has integrity and is true to their word. To be a role model for our children and to figure out and address what it was in her psyche that allowed her to give herself permission to do something that she knew was wrong, that she knew could cause harm. It's a work in progress but progress is there.

Finally re anger, I don't really care what anyone else thinks about my level of anger. When I say that I've processed it I mean that I've dug beneath the anger to the root emotions to my fears and insecurities. That's not to say that I don't get angry. Anger can be a healthy emotion, it provides motivation to take action when one would otherwise want to run and hide. My question in however is why does it matter if I'm angry? How does that change the meaning of the words I write or change the logic behind the arguments that I make?

It's what is known as an ad hominem attack. Attack the person rather than the argument. It's an attempt at misdirection that is used when one doesn't have a good response to the argument itself. You don't have a defense of your own position so you try to deflect and dismiss my position because you think that I'm angry. But the reality is that if your position had any merit you should be able to argue in favor of it on those merits and not have to resort to ad hominen attacks.

Limfriend1
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by Limfriend1 » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:20 pm

I agree Lisa that both are to blame, yet there is a difference between someone who cheats and someone who doesn't. I quoted you on another thread where you eloquently said it had something to do with 'taking responsibility'. That was the difference you mentioned, and I agreed.

One can choose to act out, or not. No one forces them in to bed with another.

JohnDeux
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by JohnDeux » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:57 pm

Skex wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:17 pm
But the reality is that if your position had any merit you should be able to argue in favor of it on those merits and not have to resort to ad hominen attacks.
You can begin by providing definitions in your argument for (a) cheating, (b) faithful, and (c) sympathy.

"She never said "hey I'm unhappy and if we don't address it in a satisfactory manner I'm going to go fuck other men." ...."

And is this indeed what she did?

"I'm close to two years out from dday, but in the immediate aftermath of discovery my reaction was primal, uncontrollable shakes from the triggered adrenaline rush of my fight or flight reflex. Even now I am subject to waves of sadness that come and go at their own apparent will.
Not as a result of my choices or actions but because of something that someone else did."

Lots of people have a partner reveal that they were sleeping around. Probably most of them get pretty damn angry initially. I would argue that the more healthy ones move from that anger to wanting to probe.....concernedly.....as to the 'why' of the infidelity. It's just my opinion: Your reaction is only minimally about your wife's behavior and I would be interested to know if any such dynamics of betrayal, repression between family members, or breaking of trust existed in your own FOO. As for entering into these waters on a thread in which the LS did not apparently consummate any of her feelings with her LO, it seems a different situation from what you and your SO experienced, but again, just my opinion here.

With regard to "... she became accountable for her location and actions, she shifted her focus from seeking external validation from others to focusing on our family, on me and our children and our lives together."

On a weekly basis, where would you say your own focus is directed, including one's intellectual and emotional involvement in work, finances, etc? If possible, try to be quantitatively specific about time spent at or attending to work and other items outside of the home.

Really good discussions in this thread.
"Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain...."~ The Wizard of Oz

Limfriend1
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by Limfriend1 » Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:01 pm

I concur JD... really good discussion in this thread.

AMA210
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by AMA210 » Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:45 pm

Perhaps one should take the time to read the posts of another and not assume that all cheating is physical, by definition. My LE never got to that point because it was stopped by a third party, and for the record, I do have enough integrity to not be someone else's "fuck buddy". IMO, that is the ultimate betrayal within a LTR. But for those here who had both an EA and PA, I refuse to judge them as harshly as I have been judged.
LE was 22 months...LO catalyst for awakening, in which I chose divorce (after 27 years of marriage)
Very happy and content with my new beginning

Skex
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by Skex » Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:35 pm

JohnDeux wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:57 pm
Skex wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:17 pm
But the reality is that if your position had any merit you should be able to argue in favor of it on those merits and not have to resort to ad hominen attacks.
You can begin by providing definitions in your argument for (a) cheating, (b) faithful, and (c) sympathy.
Oh so now we have to define basic terms in order to have a discussion? Should we define "the" and "a" to start?

Don't be pedantic. Cheating is gaining something through the use of deception and manipulation to avoid negative consequences. Faithful is keeping faith with your promises and acting with honesty and integrity. Sympathy see dictionary.com. It's not complicated. If you are doing something that you feel like you have to hide from your SO and it involves another person it's probably cheating. If it wasn't you'd be comfortable talking to them about it.

JohnDeux wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:57 pm

Lots of people have a partner reveal that they were sleeping around. Probably most of them get pretty damn angry initially. I would argue that the more healthy ones move from that anger to wanting to probe.....concernedly.....as to the 'why' of the infidelity. It's just my opinion: Your reaction is only minimally about your wife's behavior and I would be interested to know if any such dynamics of betrayal, repression between family members, or breaking of trust existed in your own FOO. As for entering into these waters on a thread in which the LS did not apparently consummate any of her feelings with her LO, it seems a different situation from what you and your SO experienced, but again, just my opinion here.
You show your ignorance with this paragraph. I've yet to find a single betrayed partner who didn't spend hours and hours in self reflection, who didn't examine their own actions and try to find a way to blame themselves. Because if we could find a way to do so, if we could find some way that we were responsible something that we could change to protect ourselves from being in that situation again we'd do it in a heart beat. The hardest thing that I've found for betrayed partners is accepting that it wasn't about them. That their cheaters cheated because of the cheaters character , their flaws their FOO and their shitty coping mechanisms. I'm under no illusions that I'm perfect, one of the toughest things for me to deal with is that an intellectual understanding of the dynamics and reasons for my wife's choices does not eliminate the subconscious reactions to them. Dealing with the dichotomy between knowledge and feeling.

The thing is that anger, pain, and sorrow are the appropriate reactions to such a fundamental betrayal of trust. The people who I find have the hardest time dealing with the aftermath of infidelity are those who deny that anger, pain and sorrow, those who try to shoulder the blame for their cheaters shitty choices, who listen to the litany of grievances and gripes that the cheater lists off and internalizes them and decides to live their lives trying to meet some abstract standard of perfection and in constant fear that failure to meet some metric of "good enough" will result in their cheater deciding that they are justified in stepping out again. That's no way to live and frankly it's just as abusive as a husband who punishes his wife for not being the perfect little housewife.

This is why I find this idea of the betrayed being in any way responsible for the cheaters choice to cheat damaging and yes anger inducing in the same way that I find arguments that a woman bears some responsibility for being sexually assaulted because she wore a short skirt or got too drunk at a party anger inducing. It's a continuance of abuse on someone who is already in pain. It also detracts from the core issue, that being that it's the cheaters fucked up coping mechanisms that caused them to cheat rather than find an ethical solution to their problem. Their aversion to conflict, their sense of entitlement or what ever piss poor coping mechanism they developed in their fucked up childhoods.

It also ignores the reality that no matter how much introspection and self improvement a betrayed partner goes through they can no more prevent someone from cheating on them again than they could have prevented their cheater from cheating on them. And save the sob stories about controlling abusive partners, for one cheating is about the worst thing someone can do when dealing with an abusive partner, If they are abusive and controlling with a faithful partner they sure as fuck aren't going to react well to an unfaithful one and anyone who becomes the AP of someone in an abusive relationship is a particular flavor of horrible despicable human being. The appropriate action to take when you care for someone in an abusive relationship would be to encourage them to get out of it and get to a safe place (like Safe Place) not take advantage of their vulnerability to get laid.

Yeah posts like the OPs make me angry, just not in a projecting of my own pain on her situation way but in the righteous anger that one should feel when witnessing injustice. The same anger I'd feel if I came across a man raping a woman or molesting a child.

JohnDeux wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:57 pm
With regard to "... she became accountable for her location and actions, she shifted her focus from seeking external validation from others to focusing on our family, on me and our children and our lives together."

On a weekly basis, where would you say your own focus is directed, including one's intellectual and emotional involvement in work, finances, etc? If possible, try to be quantitatively specific about time spent at or attending to work and other items outside of the home.

Really good discussions in this thread.
That's none of your business and irrelevant to the discussion.

What is relevant is that the OP refuses to take control of her own choices. She refuses to be responsible for those choices. Even her comment regarding the anger she had towards her LO show a lack of accountability and ownership of her actions.
AMA210 wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 3:21 pm
The anger is clearly still being processed. May be compared to the anger I felt towards LO and that was processed for a long while, and now I have no anger towards him anymore. I am at the place of actually forgiving him because I realized that he is damaged, just like me, and he is simply not aware of the "why" of his behaviors. I cannot change him and I cannot force awareness unto him. We learn at our own pace what needs to be learned.

Why are you angry at your LO? It sounds like he did exactly what he should have done which was rebuff your advances and remain faithful to his wife. You are the one who's been full on bunny boiler creeper stalker. If you were a man and he a woman most people would have suggested that he get a TRO against you.

I'll be straight here, in trying to read through your thread what I see is a constant me, me, me, me. It's always about what is being done to and happening to you. how it affects you. When you mention your husband it's usually bemoaning what he isn't doing for you, how he isn't giving you what you need.

You know that saying about insanity being repeating the same actions expecting a different response? Well Einstein may not have said it but that doesn't mean that there isn't any wisdom to it.

Change your focus. stop whining about what your husband isn't doing for you, try giving a little to him. This man who has suffered through your crazy and remained supportive of you. and yeah he's been supportive. You've had at least one physical affair here and would have happily had a second if you hadn't been rebuffed. Yet this poor man is still taking care of you, paying the bills and going through the motions.

The reason you posted this thread is to figure out how you can get your feelings back for your husband after your transgressions. Well a good place to start would be to practice a little empathy, instead of wondering why he can't read your mind and get into your head spend some time trying to get into his.

I somehow doubt that you really grasp just how damaging your behavior has been to him. How emasculating and disrespectful it is for a man to have his woman toss herself at another man. Hell my wife only went for casual sex and never once suggested that she wanted to spend the rest of her life with anyone but me and it was still a massive blow to my self esteem and ego.
AMA210 wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:45 pm
Perhaps one should take the time to read the posts of another and not assume that all cheating is physical, by definition. My LE never got to that point because it was stopped by a third party, and for the record, I do have enough integrity to not be someone else's "fuck buddy". IMO, that is the ultimate betrayal within a LTR. But for those here who had both an EA and PA, I refuse to judge them as harshly as I have been judged.
I've tried but your posts are mostly stream of consciousness with very little organization or structure. You did say that you had at least one ONS with a previous LO, however it's not clear whether or not you were married at the time. That said, where did you think your thing was going to end with this latest infatuation.

What do you think that had he not rebuffed you you'd somehow have stopped before it got physical? Yeah right, They call it a slippery slope for a reason. With each boudary broken, each additional step down that slope the easier the next step becomes. Having read literally hundreds if not thousands of accounts of infidelity. I can't think of a single time where an EA did not turn physical when there is physical proximity.

What do you think the purpose of the dopamine and endorphins that cause your limerence is in the fist place? To make platonic buddies? Please it's the evolutionary mechanism that encourages us to get busy and do the horizontal mambo so we can make new little homo sapiens. They are bonding hormones, that's why they occur during orgasm and breast feeding. Do you really think that you somehow have sufficient impulse control to stop things before you ended up in bed with that guy? Have you read your own posts? You had so little impulse control on this that you got banned from school.

Be honest with yourself if you had that kind of self control you would never have stepped foot on that path. It's not even like it's your first time on it either and that ended up with you being manipulated into a one night stand, you should have learned your lesson then yet here we are. Even now you are starting to fixate on a new target for your desires. All it's going to take is one unscrupulous guy who wants to get his dick wet and is willing to say and do the things that will walk you down that path and you'll be rationalizing up some other excuse that makes it seem less awful and selfish than it is.

Do you want out of your marriage? Because as best I can tell you are doing your damnedest to force your husband to pull the trigger and kick you to the curb because you think that you want out of that relationship but are too much of a coward to do it yourself. You want it to be his fault in order to protect your ego. But the reality is that it's all on you. You are the one who broke your marriage.

Hypothetical, say your previous LO had reciprocated your feelings and decided to feed your need for validation, where do you think it would have stopped? Did you consider the affect it would have on his marriage and wife? On his children?

There is a reason why most people nip those kinds of feelings in the bud, why married men who are honest and decent talk about their wives glowingly if they feel like they are growing too close to another attractive woman. Why women who are faithful brag on their husbands and why both avoid solo interactions with people they feel attraction to. It's because we're smart enough to know where those things lead and the terrible consequences that they create. Because we have empathy for our partners and don't want to cause them pain we don't step on that path.

This is why I laugh at the idea of people who coddle cheaters saying that I lack empathy. Even if your husband was horrible enough to justify your choice to cheat (hint he's not, if anything he's too supportive and too much of a doormat) do the children of these married men you pine after deserve to be put through the drama and trauma of a home broken by infidelity? Because they're going to blame themselves for it. Children always do.

Even though you talk about the potential damage in your "My thoughts" thread you only mention it after everything blew up in your face in a sour grapes manner "Oh it never would have worked out because of reasons anyway". You do realize that all those same reasons applied when you were getting yourself banned from school over this too right? They applied the first time you saw him and though "hello nurse". Why didn't you nip that shit in the bud then? That's what you need to get to the bottom of.

Was your ONS before you were married?

JohnDeux
Posts: 1938
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Re: Feelings Towards DH

Post by JohnDeux » Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:53 pm

Skex wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:35 pm

That's none of your business and irrelevant to the discussion.
Fair enough for the first half of the sentence, much evidence to dispute the second half. Best to you and your DW....sounds like things are on the "right" track.
"Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain...."~ The Wizard of Oz

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