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How to be happy and forgive and move on...(18 Posts)
It's been three months now since I found out that DH had a three-month (although he only met her once) affair with someone we were both friends with on Facebook. He stopped it immediately as soon as I found out, he'd been trying to break it off anyway apparently. He's done everything right since then, he's been amazing, read all the right books, done all the right things, let me cry get cross, sulk etc. But I still can't get over it. It's Christmas Eve and I'm sat here in tears with the DSs in the next room playing on the wii. Yesterday DH's dad (who doesn't know what happened of course) said 'cheer up!' which nearly got him a thump! So I think I must be spoiling it for everyone, at least I am for DH.
Please tell me it gets easier, please tell me I'll eventually forgive and move on? I've been stuck in this state of shock, anger, hurt for three months now, on and off of course, there are ok days and good days. I've been burying it all in work and college work. But now it is Christmas I can't use work as an excuse not to think and wallow. I usually love Christmas too. Sorry for the waffle. I just want someone to say I'll be ok soon I guess.
I'm so sorry your going through this. Who gives a fuck if you spoil your 'D'H's xmas, he has at least for a time, fucked up your life.
You cab take as long as you want to get over it, and you know, you may never get over it. 3months isn't very long, i know some mnetters have said it took them 18months plus.
Im terms of what he has told you about him 'wanting to end it anyway', i imagine thats bullshit, but i guess it doesn't matter now.
He can put up with whatever you throw at him until you feel better, and you need to come to terms with fact that although you may forgive him one day, you will most likely never forget.
Why do you have to be ok? Your husband betrayed your trust in a very serious way. It's normal to be very upset for a long time about something like that.
You might forgive some day, or you might not. This is not something you did, it was your husband who damaged your relationship. If you feel you can't go on, you can't get back to normal then in time you may want to call it a day.
Sorry you're dealing with this, especially at this time of year. You will have better Christmases but for the time being try not to be so hard on yourself.
Why would his father not know? Keeping it a secret between the two (or rather three) of you saves face - his - and devalues the extent of your hurt.
He needs to face up to what he did so that his parents - and he - know he has seriously jeopardised his marriage but you are both working to mend the relationship now.
He did tell his parents at the time that he'd done something really bad to me and we were going to work through it together but their reaction was 'marriage is hard let us know if you need babysitters' which is another story but there you go!
I'm more worried about not being at my best for the DSs' Christmas and do you know what I hate the most? I can't even watch Love Actually this year! Bloody film!
3 months is still early days, and it's not surprising everything and anything is a trigger.
How old are DSs? I'm afraid sheer willpower to turn your thoughts to something else, and to make them the Christmas focus are probably the only things that will improve it a little this year.
In the longer run, you may find it helps to tell H about every single trigger as it happens (DSs whereabouts permitting) and see if he is up to the role of healer by displaying contrition, apologies and reassurance each time. If he can, it will help both with that trigger and also show his commitment to you, to healing you, and to trul workin on reconciliation. If he can do this, then triggers and intrusive thoughts will gradually wane in frequency and intensity, and you may be in better shape for Christmas 2013. I hope he is up to this, and is committed to long-term change. It's your healing process that matters, and it takes as long as it takes.
Meditrina thank you for this, what you say helps a lot. I do try to tell DH whenever I have a reaction. Sometimes its just not possible like you say with work and DSs around but I do try. He's pretty good about listening and hugging me and he often tears up as well when I'm upset (and in the eleven years before this happened I only saw him cry once which was when I had a miscarriage). Sometimes things do seem to be getting better, it ebbs and flows, but Christmas has set me off again I think. Ho hum. Onwards and upwards.
It's hard - and three months is hardly scraping the surface of how long it takes. In my case I made sure that everyone who cared about him knew, as I didn't want to feel judged by his family and friends if I didn't feel in the mood to play the perfect wife role. Tell his parents, they need to at least see the position you are in even if they may never really understand the extent of the hurt.
I feel for you, but it is something that you can work through and come out of stronger. You don't have to though, where you go with your life is 100% your choice. Don't stay out of obligation, only stay if it feels right.
Almost 3 years ago for me and if your DH continues to let you ask questions, express your hurt and anger and have 'off days' - I can still go into a sad melancholy place at times but hormonal ups and downs of the menopause haven't always helped our recovery - then it can and does get better.But 3 months is no time to heal a hurt like this so don't beat yourself up.
Funnily enough Love Actually was always our Christmas family film but I will never be able to watch Emma Thompson in that scene again without a sense of bereavement for the implicit trust and uncynical view I had of my marriage.
But I'm still in my marriage, and do you know what it's good and getting better all the time.Couples counselling, individual counselling for me a year or so in when I felt completely stuck and even angrier after the initial shock, and time have all helped and healed.
Its true I can forgive.But I won't ever forget but on balance we would both have been unhappier without each other ,and although our DCs are grown up we are an immensely close family, and even the idea of them trying to choose who to visit and when at Christmas would break my heart. Not that I stayed for them, I stayed and fought for us as a couple ,as did my DH.Sometimes good men lose the plot and do bad and stupid things I believe.Only you know your DH and marriage and how long youvare both prepared to work at things.
Echo the comment only stay if it feels right but that can take some time to work out.All the best.
Worcestershiresauce and Slippersox thank so much for that, your comment Slippersox 'even good men lose the plot' is very apt actually, as that is how DH explained what happened. He didn't think, he was flattered, he didn't even like her that much (she was a friend of mine as well, she contacted me daily on facebook - in fact she was a bloody pain half the time - popping up on chat with 'are you there?'), he was struggling at work, we'd drifted a bit (I was unhappy too), and it just happened, she chased him (I hate her so much). I believe his version of events. I know some people might call me naive but I do. It doesn't make it any less painful though. So I decided to stay for both the DSs, myself and DH. I thought I had two choices: to be miserable for a while or forever apart or to be miserable for a while together. I decided that trying to work it out was the hardest option but the best for all of us. It might yet not work out. I hope it does. We're going to try counseling in January hopefully (the only delay was DS3 starting nursery as finding one hour a week childcare was just going to be a nightmare). It's reassuring to be told that 3 months is not long. I keep thinking I'm being selfish for still feeling so upset and hurt. I kind of thought it'd have faded by now. It hasn't. It comes in waves though. I feel so guilty sometimes for still being stuck in this place, but it helps to know that that is quite normal.
Yes you may get called naive.And told not to dislike/ blame the OW as only your DH owed you loyalty.So prepare for that.What I now know is that OW in my case changed her daily routine completely to be around my DH and was flirting with him for months,and yes he flirted back and encouraged it and that will always hurt like hell.So I reserve the right to always dislike her intensely,and don't care a stuff if that's not a popular stance.
Please do not feel guilty or selfish.Your DH and mine were the selfish ones for indulging themselves and risking everything.But equally I know that every time I had a setback and got upset or angry I also gave myself a hard time.Your feelings are very valid and normal and if your DH is serious about repairing the damage he will understand and support you, whilst working hard on himself and his failings so this never happens again.Anything less for me would have been unacceptable and my DH knew that from the start.
I always thought I was very black and white and any form of cheating would be the end of my marriage but almost 30 years together, great DCs and extended family, having been through so many other ups and downs with jobs, business etc. and all the countless thoughtful things he had done,and good times we had had made it all a lot more complicated.Its just hard to love someone but hate what they have done/ become isn't it?
I think the hatred of the OW is only really seen as a problem if it is the sole focus of the cheated-on spouse's anger. In those cases (and I don't think the OP falls into this category) it is simply a way of avoiding the real problem by fixating on the symptom rather than the cause. It also allows the cheating spouse to claim the problem has gone away when the OW does, and thus the cheated-on spouse has no further cause for complaint.
OP's DH seems to be accepting that this is his responsibility alone (which is correct). The OW sounds unhinged, so I think my concern would be why that wasn't obvious to him at the time - he needs to explain his thought processes to demonstrate why this couldn't happen again. Hopefully counselling will help with that.
Oh god it is so hard to love and hate someone at the same time and I feel so guilty all the time about it too. Sometimes I want to shout and scream at him, or run away, or hide somewhere. Other times he's being so loving and tender and so sorry that I feel loved and I can't hate him. It's a really weird stew of emotions. I always thought cheating meant an instant end and what hurts is that he knew I felt like that yet he still let it happen. He simply can't explain why to me either. That's part of the problem. He can't explain why it happened.
Tribpot the OW is definitely unhinged. She was so interested in my life, she was interested in my children, and kept asking me about me and DH. She was creepy. She seemed jealous but I just thought she was being nice. Thing is I didn't know she was also talking to DH on facebook otherwise I would have talked to him about how unhinged she was. She turned out to be a total bunny boiler. I do have some sympathy for her. She has no life and she was completely naive to think what she was doing would not cause the harm it did.
"It's a really weird stew of emotions"
I so feel all your pain.
It is 6 months now since I found out about H OW and it is getting better. Like you I am on a roller coaster of emotions.
I love my H but can't get my head round what he's done to me. If you claim to love someone how can you cheat and lie to them? I'm struggling to come to terms with that.
On a positve note we both want to be together. He is truly sorry but I do feel that I have to keep my council and bite my tongue. a bit as you can't keep bringing up the past. Although I have said that if I feel the need to talk he will have to listen as some things just need to be said. He does understand but I know he would rather not talk.
You mentioned "triggers". Fact is there will always be triggers and I need to find a way to get past my emotions. Not sure how but with his understanding I hope we can move on and repair the damage.
I have 2 key issues ; TRUST and ANGER.
Am I right to be trusting he is telling me the truth about his contact with OW (past and present). ANGER with OW and I want to tell her exactly what I think of her!
Both these emotions eat away at you and do no good but nevertheless ate real.
Time and forgiveness are key. If you both know in your hearts that you love each other and are willing to work together then I think there can be a happy ending.
'If you claim to love someone how can you cheat and lie to them?' I ask myself this every day, every hour
I am so angry at the OW in our situation that sometimes when I put my head on the pillow at night I start having a conversation with her and I can feel myself getting more and more angry I have to force myself to stop thinking about it. She's on Facebook and sadly she's friends with three mutual people (one is my niece) so sometimes her ugly name pops up and I can't do anything about it.
I wish you a happy ending too. It's so hard though, isn't it. Sometimes I feel positive and almost happy with my lot. Christmas turned out to be lovely and I didn't cry once on Christmas Day! I see how much DH cares for me and loves me, but like you said, how can I reconcile that with what he did? He lied to me for three months, he waited until I took the children camping to go see her, I spoke to him that next morning on the phone and when I came home he was so pleased to see me back. How can I deal with that? We'd been on a family holiday just before he went to see her and that whole time he knew he was going to go. I can't even think about another family holiday at the moment. It is just too painful to remember that he was lying to me that whole time. But he calls it a time of madness. He can't believe what he did.
You can block her on Facebook. Then you won't see any content that relates to her.
I'll take a look. I'm more worried about her seeing anything I about me.
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