Divorcebusting.com
Posted By: Gekko Charting My Course - 06/27/19 10:20 PM
New thread. Links to prior threads:

http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2842291&#Post2842291
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2842292&page=11
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 06/27/19 10:48 PM
So I established in my mind that I did exhibit aholish behavior in my M, hence my prior thread titles. Through IC and plenty of talks with family and friends, I also established that I was for the most part reacting to excessively harsh criticism, remarks and controlling efforts from the W. So apparently my responsive defensiveness and stonewalling was textbook Behavioral Science 101. Doesn't mean that behavior was good for the R - it wasn't, and there are better ways that I have now learned - but it does offer comfort that no, I'm really not a jerk. I was just a guy with a strong frame and boundaries when it comes to respect and defended those boundaries forcefully. Which is not to fully justify all of my behavior or say that I have zero responsibility. Explanation, not justification.

So I'm done calling myself out for jerkish behavior, I know what happened I was there, and I almost done making peace with it. I am feeling the pull of a transition away from analyzing the M and its problems and who is to blame and why and so on, a pull in the direction forward not backward, on looking at the chart in front of me and picking my course, eyeing the hazards and also the sights I want to experience on the journey. I think I am feeling this pull more strongly now that I am closing in on a new home and the space that I will have from W. I see silver linings sparkling in the sun on the horizon. I don't know where things are going to end up but I am looking forward to the journey, even with its hardships, bring it on, life is beautiful.
Posted By: Hallzy9 Re: Charting My Course - 06/28/19 12:26 AM
Hey Gekko, really glad to hear you donít blame yourself anymore. I always see vets saying that we could be the perfect H and still get BDed. I think a ton of LBS blame themselves for the downfall of the M when their WAW has a ton of issues that contributed too. They love to shift blame, when I feel that often times behaviors LBS exhibit are in response to a bad behavior of their W. For me it was distancing. My W was highly anxious and was constantly trying to be controlling. I didnít put up with it and after years of me running from her control she blames me for not giving her enough attention. Sure how I reacted wasnít a healthy way to deal, but it was still a reaction to a behavior of hers. I guess all we can do is look inward and learn how to deal with these behaviors in a different fashion. Keep it up Gekko!
Posted By: MLCxH Re: Charting My Course - 06/28/19 02:58 AM
glad to see you healing Gekko. No husband is perfect. The sad thing is even if you were perfect, W would have rewritten history to find something wrong.

I am starting to feel the same way as I detach more. I did a lot of things wrong after BD because I did not know about DB. But they came from a good place and I was trying to be a good husband. If showing her I cared about the MR pushed her away, should I really blame myself? If pressuring her to make a decision whether she wanted to stay married to me instead of living in limbo hell pushed her away, should I blame myself? Is it so bad to expect my partner to do the basic duties of a W instead of blaming me and expecting perfection? Looking back I would have done things differently after BD and could have saved my MR but hindsight is always 20/20. Looking back I would have also bought Apple stock 15 years ago smile There is no winning with a WAW or WW. I tolerates her bad behavior and she still chose to end the MR. Is that really my fault?
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 06/28/19 04:52 PM
Thanks guys. The affirmation regarding W's attitude issues and harshness just keeps coming, first it was from her family, and now that D is underway my friends and family are chiming in, and even mutual friends are making unsolicited comments. Honestly even though I have known for years about her issues it still hits me hard every time another comment about her personality is made. On the one hand it helps to confirm that i'm really not the bad guy here, I was just reacting to her harsh behavior. On the other hand it makes me think "WTF did I do getting in so deep with this chick" and I want to withdraw even further from her, and this makes it difficult to be friendly. I have been facing an enormous challenge to be nice to her due to how I was treated. I'm not nasty to her, but nice isn't the word to describe it either. Cordial? Kind of. Businesslike? Probably most accurate.

If not for the kids I would have at least separated and possibly D'd her years ago. The desire of keeping a family intact is so strong in me, I couldn't do it. Maybe me taking action then would have been the wakeup call W's needs to realize how destructive her attitude is to a R. Maybe things would be different now. Who knows. I am just journaling here in the moment, IRL I don't spend much time with "what if's". I am focused on playing the cards in my hand now. I am balancing living in the moment with keeping an eye on the road ahead.

Tom Hanks in Castaway said "I got to keep breathing. Because tomorrow, the sun will rise. Who knows what the tide could bring?" I always liked that line, and now that i'm in my sitch even more so.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 06/28/19 04:58 PM


Originally Posted by Gekko
, I also established that I was for the most part reacting to excessively harsh criticism, remarks and controlling efforts from the W.


The way I look at things now:

Each interaction is a chance to learn something. A new way to listen, understand, respond or whatever. Each relationship is an opportunity to grow. As long as we do our best and not keep repeating bad behavior, we are on the right path.
Posted By: MLCxH Re: Charting My Course - 06/28/19 06:27 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko

If not for the kids I would have at least separated and possibly D'd her years ago. The desire of keeping a family intact is so strong in me, I couldn't do it.


Ain't that the truth? It is also the reason I am still willing to take her back. One thing I find interesting is how time and space works. The point of DB is that the WAW will come back to her senses with time and space and realize what they were missing in the MR. On the other hand time and space makes the LBS realize what they were putting up with in the MR for the sake of keeping the family together smile
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 06/28/19 06:32 PM
Originally Posted by Ready2Change


Originally Posted by Gekko
, I also established that I was for the most part reacting to excessively harsh criticism, remarks and controlling efforts from the W.


The way I look at things now:

Each interaction is a chance to learn something. A new way to listen, understand, respond or whatever. Each relationship is an opportunity to grow. As long as we do our best and not keep repeating bad behavior, we are on the right path.


It is a never-ending process of self-improvement, isn't it?

I feel like I have made more progress since BD than during my entire R with W. I'm guessing that is not an uncommon sentiment....
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 06/28/19 07:56 PM
Originally Posted by MLCxH
Originally Posted by Gekko

If not for the kids I would have at least separated and possibly D'd her years ago. The desire of keeping a family intact is so strong in me, I couldn't do it.


Ain't that the truth? It is also the reason I am still willing to take her back. One thing I find interesting is how time and space works. The point of DB is that the WAW will come back to her senses with time and space and realize what they were missing in the MR. On the other hand time and space makes the LBS realize what they were putting up with in the MR for the sake of keeping the family together smile


Time and Space. These elements have played huge roles in all of my significant R's prior to getting M. Thinking back about it, the R's in my life all read like script now when it comes to the impact of Time and Space, whether I was the dumper or the dumpee. I have been thinking about posting about these R's to journal and maybe illustrate that these 2 elements are so powerful.

My first real R was from age 19-22. My girlfriend was a knockout and the R was fiery and passionate. The intense love of teenagers. We talked M and babies and a life together. My 2 best friends were ready to tie me up and sit on me to stop me from buying a ring at age 20. I was mad about this girl.

So a few years went by and I was doing the college thing, living on campus, and she was living with a relative and trying to get into the fashion industry. She had no interest in college. I got deeper and deeper into campus life and it started to become apparent to me that we were moving in different directions with our lives. I saw it, felt it, and wanted out and to be free and do the college thing to the hilt. I broke up with her and broke her heart, she still saw us together forever.

I fell off the face of the earth, didn't contact her at all, until one day about 6 months after I dumped her I ran into her at a gas station near campus. She looked incredible. Old feelings started to creep back. We caught up a little and as it turned out we still had a few items of each others, so we agreed to meet up a few days later at her place to do an exchange.

In the days before the meet-up at her place, my feelings for her continued to come to the surface and I wanted to give the R another shot. Maybe I made a bad call in breaking up with her. We had a lot of history and most of it was great. So I'm headed to her house to apologize, lay my feelings on the line, and get her back. The Time and Space from her cleared my head, and when I saw her and talked to her again the feelings were right there.

So we met up and I made my heartfelt pitch, and she said no. Not interested in a R with me. Said she had cried for months and hoped for recon but she was done crying and had moved on. She was dating a guy and was into him and wanted to see where it went. (she ended up marrying him....then D'ing sometime later...) So it was my turn to be crushed. I had her, and I let her go. I blew it. I was the dumper coming back for another shot, and she was the dumpee who had already moved on by then. Time and Space at work.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/01/19 04:22 PM
Journaling:

I have a phone call set with my L tomorrow to discuss what looks like a final version of a short separation agreement - key points are 50/50 custody and division of finances. W has not wavered an inch on proceeding with the D process. We have a court date in September where D may be finalized if we can get to an agreement on all the fine points.

Things appear on track for me to take possession of my new house later this month. I know 5 families on the street and there are lots of kids. It's one of those neighborhoods that the kids all run back and forth between each other's houses after school and on the weekends. Like the street I grew up on, very very fun. My kids are still handling the pending split like champs, but I am watching them closely for signs of problems. It will be more difficult when reality of two houses hits but I will do my best to support them through the process. I love them so much.

As for me I remain very business-like with W, only discussing logistics. I am otherwise BUSY BUSY BUSY as Steve85 would say. I find that the less interaction we have, the less opportunity for her to lob a snide comment or criticism at me. I am not going to miss that shyt, though from time to time she will try and get her shots in even after D, LOL.

I feel like I am becoming a better man and person as I go through this process. The sitch is not bringing me down, it's lifting me up. Sounds crazy but it's true. I'm still a work in progress and always will be, but I feel pretty good these days. I had an awesome life before I met W and will have an awesome life after D. I am lucky to have an incredible family and group of friends and I have built a great life over the years. And my kids are amazing. I am blessed, to be honest. I'm sad about the M but I do deserve better. I could have handled some things better myself, but I do deserve better than what W has given me. And I want to give someone the better me when the time comes.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/03/19 06:08 PM
Folks I just signed a separation agreement. We are going to need a bigger final final document with more details but this is the starting point. 50/50 custody and house buyout deal or list it for sale by August 1 are the main terms.

My Dad's wife thinks I should not agree to a buyout and instead force the sale of the house. She thinks W will have the "upper hand" with the kids if I move out and she does not. W and I told the kids that one of us was going to keep the house when we broke the D news to them, and I think it's best for the kids for them to stay in that house (50% of the time...) during the early years of the D at least. I don't think it's best for them to have 2 new homes at the same time. I want some familiarity and stability for them. Plus I don't want to go back on our word of keeping the house for them. Hopefully W and her dad will step up with enough $$ to buy me out.
Posted By: LB55 Re: Charting My Course - 07/03/19 06:23 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
Plus I don't want to go back on our word of keeping the house for them. Hopefully W and her dad will step up with enough $$ to buy me out.


What if they offer your less than it is worth? How much is keeping your word worth? Just something to think about.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 07/03/19 06:28 PM
Gekko - regarding the house, do what YOU want. What is important to you? We all have many voices to listen to - friends, family, DB forum, counselors. Advice is great but often conflicting or colored by the experiences of the giver. Sometimes the advice is based on prior experience and should carry more weight. Only you can decide in the end what is best for you. If you are unsure and you have weighed everything I would say go with your gut.

Also it helps me to think what do I REALLY care about and what is not important. Simplify to your core needs. Fight the battles that matter to you, nothing more, nothing less.
Posted By: LH19 Re: Charting My Course - 07/03/19 06:32 PM
Iím a believer someone should keep the family home. Preferably the one who wants out should leave.
Posted By: AnotherStander Re: Charting My Course - 07/03/19 07:22 PM
Gekko, do what is best for you financially. Of course we preach not leaving the home but not necessarily when you're talking about a D settlement. My brother hung onto the family home in D but it's a huge 2 story affair that he can't afford on his own. So now he has an absolute mountain of CC debt and a house that is falling apart because he can't afford to maintain it, and an old junky car to boot. And he makes a six figure income! If your W stays there then so be it, but do get your fair cut out of the deal.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/05/19 07:18 PM
Thanks everyone for the input regarding the house. I would say my sitch might resemble AS's brother, where keeping the house would require cashing in the 401K with taxes and penalties, etc, and after that I would be in a precarious financial position moving forward. No thanks. I'll rent for a year or two while I strategize buying another smaller, more affordable house that will allow me some extra $$ for saving/investing and funding fun things for the kids.

The rental I have a deposit on is in a neighborhood where homes are more affordable and therefore there are a lot more families than my current neighborhood. Kids playing in the street, running back and forth between houses, etc. From an environment perspective it is a major upgrade for the kids compared to my current neighborhood.

The 4th was fun, we went to a big party at a friends house, I spent most of my time talking with friends and playing with the kids in the pool. Probably spent a total of 10 minutes altogether interacting with W, only on logistics of getting the kids fed, dried off out of the pool, etc. Great day.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/08/19 09:39 PM
Journaling:

I just confirmed a move-in date for my new place of July 27. Plan is for W and I to divvy up all the house stuff this weekend - that should be fun...:). She has not blinked an eye on the continued progress to D, and I am not blocking her. She is a WAW with years of resentment built up. She is a scorekeeper but rarely counts my goals, LOL. She holds grudges. I am an ahole because I have boundaries that I have always enforced - you can't insult me, disrespect me, speak to me in a condescending tone, etc. without getting push back from me. That makes me an ahole.

Her view is that she is not abrasive and insulting, she is just "honest". She just tells it like it is, doesn't "sugar coat" things. So she can say just about anything in any tone and it's just her being "blunt". If I have a problem with it, I'm too sensitive. It's all on me. She's never wrong, won't admit to being wrong or out of line, and will never apologize.

Rant off.

I'm not spending much time thinking of whether there is OM. I was talking with my dad the other day and he said he had a conversation with my mom, and she asked him if he thought W had a boyfriend. My dad replied to her with "Who Cares?" I love that guy, he gets it.

Regarding OM, whether current or future, my only real thoughts go to what type of guy will W be able to have a LTR with. I suspect after the honeymoon phase wears off OM will eventually see the issues that flow from her high strung nature, the quick temper and acid tongue, the criticism, the never-wrong attitude, the micromanagement, etc. Who will put up with it for a LTR? I am interested to see. I am starting to feel like a member of W's family, who I think have looked at our R from the beginning and thought "good luck to you Gekko". That's how I will look at OM. One of W's relatives actually told me point blank that they never thought she would be able to hold onto a guy because of her attitude issues.

Let me be clear I am not obssessing about W's future R, I am way too focused on my own sitch moving forward, but it does come to mind from time to time. So it's either completely normal, or I am not detached. I think I look at it as yet another way to validate what went wrong with my M. W's family, my family, my friends observations about W have been nothing but a series of validations of my take on her issues, yet I still seem to seek more. Is there ever an end, can I ever get enough?
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 07/08/19 09:57 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
I'm not spending much time thinking of whether there is OM. I was talking with my dad the other day and he said he had a conversation with my mom, and she asked him if he thought W had a boyfriend. My dad replied to her with "Who Cares?" I love that guy, he gets it.


Hard to work on a relationship with a third party involved.

The one thing that I believe is an alpha male will protect the relationship if it is important to him.

If there is a threat to his family, he will deal with it.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 07/08/19 10:29 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
She is a WAW with years of resentment built up. She is a scorekeeper but rarely counts my goals, LOL. She holds grudges. I am an ahole because I have boundaries that I have always enforced - you can't insult me, disrespect me, speak to me in a condescending tone, etc. without getting push back from me. That makes me an ahole.

Her view is that she is not abrasive and insulting, she is just "honest". She just tells it like it is, doesn't "sugar coat" things. So she can say just about anything in any tone and it's just her being "blunt". If I have a problem with it, I'm too sensitive. It's all on me. She's never wrong, won't admit to being wrong or out of line, and will never apologize.

Rant off.

Saint Augustine: "Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die."

That quote lingers in my mind a lot lately. It's one of Gottman's 4 Horsemen for a reason. Your W has chosen to keep drinking the poison.

I think you will know you have achieved detachment when you don't need the external validation from other people, when you just know to your core that you are better off. And when you can see both the positive and negative qualities of your W in a balanced way, not clouded by emotion. It's just going to take time for your emotions to balance out to achieve this.

Your WAW is on her worst behavior at the moment, and you sound very frustrated. I know this feeling, being blamed for everything, having your spouse project their own issues onto you.

I think of my W in 2 stages: Pre-BD, and post-BD. The post-BD W is an absolute monster. Nobody would tolerate this kind of behavior beyond a first date. Long-term, she will return to pre-BD W. That version will likely still have the same trust and control issues weighing her down, the issues she ignores and denies. Maybe she would find the right person, maybe not. In a miracle scenario, she will tackle her trust and control issues head-on, and we will somehow R and beginning M 2.0. I am not holding my breath.

You're going to move out, start enjoying your new life with your own private space, and I think you are going to find it will accelerate the detachment process in a positive way for you.

N.B.: I am not a vet here, I am mid-process myself, this is just me shooting theories out there.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/09/19 12:16 AM
Originally Posted by Ready2Change
Originally Posted by Gekko
I'm not spending much time thinking of whether there is OM. I was talking with my dad the other day and he said he had a conversation with my mom, and she asked him if he thought W had a boyfriend. My dad replied to her with "Who Cares?" I love that guy, he gets it.


Hard to work on a relationship with a third party involved.

The one thing that I believe is an alpha male will protect the relationship if it is important to him.

If there is a threat to his family, he will deal with it.


So true. I have never shied away from confrontation in this regard in any of my relationships. I went from overt physical threats as a young man to being more subtle as I matured, but always an underlying hint of possible physicality. There is a Canadian clinical psychologist with some notoriety over the past several years who talks about the underlying threat of physical conflict between men, interesting subject and true.

If I discovered an OM during the R I would certainly gone against the general advice here and blown the whole thing up - direct confrontation with OM, tell his W (if any), tossing W out of the house and being tempted to go to the families. I was verifiably cheated on once by an old girlfriend (with her prior boyfriend) and she was immediately fired.

What is my W doing right now? Not me. She either has another guy, has her eye on another guy, or has her mind on the thought of another guy. We'll see how it all plays out. I am focusing on me and kids to be honest. She will do what she will do at this point. But I will not hesitate to call BS loudly if she ultimately starts parading a new guy around who she knew from work before BD but "nothing happened until after D, they were just friends" LOL.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 07/09/19 03:33 AM
You da man!
Posted By: Hallzy9 Re: Charting My Course - 07/09/19 08:21 AM
Hell yeah gekko! I can appreciate the idea to call BS. Iím in a pretty similar situation where I found no evidence but had suspicions. I would love the chance to call her out if she does indeed have a new man that was ďjust a friendĒ. Iím sure you would hear about it from your kids if someone was coming around to the house. A little different for me as S is too young. Glad to hear you are focusing on yourself and kids! Iím sure you are having a good time!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/09/19 04:07 PM
Originally Posted by Ready2Change
You da man!


LOL maybe sometimes too much of a "man" R2C. I've toned it way down since my younger days but it's still a work in progress.

Yes Hallzy I actually am having some fun despite the shytty process. I had a great life before I met W and will have a great life after. Even better than before because I have 2 amazing kids. Great family and group of friends, blessed for that. No casual OW yet and I'm not even going close to that sitch until I move out, sticking to my guns and morals. I went through a bit of a struggle a few months ago, thinking of OW, that mostly grew out of being at a bar stocked with beauties and a particular flirty interaction I had. Kinda messed with my head, honestly. All in due time. Patience.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/22/19 07:03 PM
Gekko update:

I am less than a week away from moving day. Movers are set and W and I have an agreement regarding splitting just about all the household possessions. Some stuff is going to have to wait as I am busy at work and just can't get to it all.

Communication with W is nothing but business.

Kids are excited about the new house and neighborhood. I wonder how they will handle the house shuffling once we get it going. I want to make it as easy on them as possible. The kids aspect of this sitch is the main thing that hits my gut. The financial aspect also sux but I will work that out. It's really the kids feelings that I worry about and causes my some pain, I can't lie. I'm strong as an ox in front of them and pretty much everyone else but I do hurt for them.

There are going to be some bumps in the road but I know there will be plenty of great times ahead. My life was incredible before I even knew W existed, and will be amazing after D as well. Difference is now I have 2 incredible kids, so things are even better than before W. Not excited about seeing W at school events/sports events, etc., but that comes with the territory.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 07/23/19 06:07 AM
Gekko -

It is heartbreaking and frustrating watching kids go through this. My kids are each handling it in different ways, it is really the hardest part to experience and each one has said things that have crushed me. They are also resilient and incredible people.

One suggestion is let the kids pick out stuff for their rooms - decorations, bedding, etc. My kids loved this -- they picked out stuff online, and partly I surprised them. It really helped. It also helped me focus on some positive things during the move.

At the same time, all 3 of mine, at some point, have absolutely crushed my heart:

D3 - often before bed, randomly breaks down and buries her head in the pillow. "Don't leave me, I'm going to miss you"
D5 - "I don't want to live in 2 houses, I don't want to go back and forth"
S7 - "What if mom deletes your phone number and forgets where you live and we never get to see you again?"

I think the best you can do is exactly what you are doing... nothing but business with W, no drama in front of the kids.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/23/19 06:52 PM
Thanks unchien. I know I am going to get hit with plenty of shots to the heart. I love my kids, I think they are amazing kids, and they know it. I know they love me. There is comfort in that. I can take the shots to the heart, I don't want any but just like with W I can't control it, only deal with it the best way possible. Even without a D kids will still hit your gut with stuff sometimes, part of being a parent I guess.

Kids have already picked out their own bedrooms, furniture, comforters, etc. They are part of the process and so far seem to be having fun and there is a level of excitement. They know some other kids in the neighborhood already and are excited about being on the same street. I think there are lots of good times ahead in the new place.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/24/19 06:45 PM
I have the keys to my new place, went over there last night to scope it out and get mentally prepped for the move. Wasn't there more than 10 minutes before a knock on the door, it was a guy I know who lives down the street and saw me drive in. He knows my W. I told him I was getting close to finalizing the separation of all the household stuff, and referring to my W and this process he said "she seems like she would be tough to negotiate with" while he looked me in the eye knowingly. I just looked back at him and kind of shrugged my shoulders, and he said "sorry, man".

It has been a seemingly endless string of unsolicited comments from people regarding W's personality. It has happened so much, I am wondering if they are just trying to make me feel better, like the D from her is a good thing, or what is going on. So many people just chiming in with little comments that are unsolicited. Part of me likes it because it validates how I feel about W's issues, but it does eff with my head a little too. Makes me shake my head, how could I have ended up in this sitch with this person?
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 07/24/19 10:29 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
Part of me likes it because it validates how I feel about W's issues, but it does eff with my head a little too. Makes me shake my head, how could I have ended up in this sitch with this person?

20/20 hindsight. Think of all the knowledge you have now for your future relationship/s.

Don't know about you, but I have this same thought and then take it further -- how did things start off so great with this person, and then turn into this sitch? Will I be able to trust or commit fully to another person in the future, knowing what can happen?
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/25/19 09:45 PM
Originally Posted by unchien
Don't know about you, but I have this same thought and then take it further -- how did things start off so great with this person, and then turn into this sitch? Will I be able to trust or commit fully to another person in the future, knowing what can happen?


In the early part of relationships most people are in positive sentiment override, but later might find themselves in negative sentiment override. Anyone who doesn't know these conditions should google them because they explain so much.

In my sitch, I saw glimpses of my W's harshness - toward her dad, the clerk at the store, etc. Not often, but enough to get my attention. But I was in positive sentiment override, perhaps too positive. W was never going to hit me with that harshness, I would shut that down in a millisecond, so not a big deal. Enter marriage and kids, and all of a sudden the harshness ramps up and its not so easy to kick her to the curb. A lot invested in the R. And try as I might I could not get her to stop with the criticism and disrespect.

One of the morals of my story is that if you are in a R with someone and you see them treat someone else harshly or with disrespect, get ready because you are eventually going to be a target for that behavior. Maybe the biggest target of all, once you are M'd with kids and with that person every day. They will have lots of ammo to fire at you. Once of my biggest pieces of advice now is to jettison anyone like this as soon as you see this behavior toward others. There is no need to get entangled with someone who has a nasty harsh streak.

Personally I doubt I will have any issues with commitment and trust in the future. My W is who she is, and I have had long term relationships prior to her with great women who had zero nastiness in them, so I know they are out there, lots of them, fantastic women. My job is to be the best man I can be and learn from the things I did wrong in my M, and screen the women that come into my orbit to weed out the ones who may have the inner harshness that my W has. That's all I can do. It's going to be a fun journey.
Posted By: Hallzy9 Re: Charting My Course - 07/25/19 10:12 PM
Hey Gekko, glad to read you are about to be in the new place and are excited for it! I know your sitch is far longer than mine, but I think you will enjoy finally not being under the same room as W. Itís almost like you can get peace at home finally. I totally agree with all your thoughts on seeing a persons nastiness. My W was always incredibly rude and nasty to her own mom. And granted her mom was not a great mother when my W was growing up, this behavior isnít acceptable as an adult. You are right in saying we think to positively in the beginning, I did the same. Itís only a matter of time until the spouse becomes the target of bad behaviors.

Take care man!
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 07/25/19 10:53 PM
Gekko - I have not read about PSO and NSO before, very interesting.

I bet NSO explains a lot of our situations on this forum. I feel like my W sees only negative things in me and our MR, and it's been that way for at least 8 months. When she started going to IC a few months back, she would periodically send me a bizarre text thanking me for going to work and making money for the family. Perhaps her counselor was encouraging her to try to see thing in a positive light to fight off the NSO. I don't know. It was weird. It definitely didn't work.

You are right about the harshness being a red flag. My W has turned very cold towards other people in her life, including her own family as well as mine. In many of these cases, I would say the relationships were not exactly healthy, but my W took things to extremes IMO. Very black and white. OTOH, she has had people in her life that give nothing, only take from her, yet she will keep them around.

Anyways, now I am that target you talk about. Throughout our 15 year history, targets have never turned things around with her. I'm giving her time and space and we'll see... really the NSO is what needs to change first. Which means I have absolutely zero control, and should just focus on me for now.

Idea for future relationships: Ask about their EX's. If somebody only has negative things to say about their EX, that is a red flag for me. I had issues with all my EX's, for various reasons, but they were all great women and I wish them the best. My W thinks all her EX's are crazy and/or abusive... hmmm...

Thanks for helping to clarify things for me -- I am positive about my own life, but hopeless about reconciliation, and I think this is a very strong reason why.

Hope the move goes well... I think you will enjoy the peace and space!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/26/19 06:02 PM
One of my go-to quotes right after BD was from the end of the movie Castaway when Tom Hanks said

"And I know what I have to do now. I gotta keep breathing. Because tomorrow the sun will rise. Who knows what the tide could bring?"

No one can know the specific details of their future, but you can know that no matter what, life will be beautiful if you make it so. Incredible things are on the horizon, though maybe you can't see them at the moment.

Just thinking about this now as I am reading through a lot of sitches here where people are understandably really struggling with mindset. PMA and GAL are so critical. And understanding that no, You Will Not Die. To the contrary, you will have a fantastic life, if you want one and make one for yourself.
Posted By: DejaVu6 Re: Charting My Course - 07/26/19 06:39 PM
PSO and NSO really explain why I ended up here in the first place. I knew my H was capable of cheating on people as he fathered his first child while he was engaged to someone else. At the time, I chalked it up to him being really young when all that happened but, in hindsight, it was a BIG indicator of his character. I also saw that he had a poor relationship with his dad but assigned most of the blame on his dad. I still feel like his dad has primary responsibility but I also see that my H could have changed the dynamic, at least his part in it, by approaching his dad like an adult and telling him how he felt. But he never did. For 14 years I watched them do their dance to both of their detriments. My H is deathly afraid of conflict and would rather not talk to someone for months than to tell them why he is upset or try to fix things. I mistakenly thought that was just a factor in his R with his dad but now I see that he approaches ALL of his relationships that way. His mom is the same way. She will never directly tell you when she is upset. Either she will find a way to just swallow it and move on as if nothing has happened OR she will address it in passive aggressive ways. i.e. If she is concerned the dog hasn't been fed, instead of asking directly if you fed the dog, she will look at the dog and ask, "Have they fed you yet?" so you will overhear. It is highly annoying. Nowhere has my H been role modeled how to approach things like an adult... "Hey... you really hurt me when you did that. Can we find a way to work it out?" That is completely foreign to him. He swallows things and keeps swallowing while he allows resentments to build. And when enough resentment has been built up, he uses it to justify lying, cheating and running away and makes it your fault. I am sad for him but happy I no longer have to live with it.

I also saw that my H had no problems with leaving longterm relationships and reinventing himself while leaving most of those relationships behind which explains why our sitch progressed as quickly as it did following BD. I'm sure if we did not have kids, I would NEVER hear from him. I loved him unconditionally for 14 years and would have moved mountains to try and work through things but he made sure I never had that option. For all intent and purposes, I am dead to him. That used to cause me such psychological pain but I now know it has nothing to do with me so it no longer bothers me. We share a history and children but that is about it and I am in a place where I accept it and can move forward holding my head up high. Anyway...my point is...there were definitely big red flags in my sitch and PSO definitely did not work in my favour. I'm sure most of us on here have had similar AHA moments looking back. The important thing is that we learn from it and try not to repeat mistakes in future relationships.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/30/19 08:12 PM
I am still thinking through the concepts of PSO and ignoring red flags. It seems like PSO doesn't involve ignorance but just relegates the other person's flaws/issues to something that is relatively inconsequential because you are feeling so good about the R. The good outweighs the bad by a lot.

As long as your spouse's pre-existing negative behavior doesn't change too much for the worse or their positive behavior stops, aka you are dealing with pretty much the same person and issues as early on in the R, then staying in PSO seems very doable and if you are out of PSO then getting back to it might not be too hard. The passage of time can certainly be a big factor in someone getting back into PSO. Looking back at the past through the rose-colored glasses of PSO seems kind of common. I have reinitiated R's in my past after some time and distance, where I was the one who ended things, because I saw things more clearly after some time and distance. I got back into PSO.

When someone's behavior gets worse, as in my case with my W's attacks, criticisms, snide comments, etc. - this can easily push you into NSO and that is huge trouble for the R. I was and still am in NSO regarding W. And she has been in NSO as to me for a looong time. I can do no right, basically. W can't even state why she married me.

I am still figuring things out but it feels like my being in NSO, while damaging to the R, is grounded in some really bad behavior by W that systematically killed my attraction to her and desire to even be around her. Who wants to be close to someone who always seems to have a poison dart firing at you?

I am working on getting out of NSO and just viewing things without that bias. All that really means for me is that I will be able to better acknowledge W's positive qualities despite her flaws. It will not wash away her flaws or make them less severe, they are bad and toxic and she needs a lot of work, and I am doubtful to ever get back into PSO without major change, but at least I will be out of NSO and find my equilibrium.

Kind of went down a rabbit hole there, and this thought process is playing waaay in the background as my new house, kids, career and GAL activities dominate the forefront. I am 9 months post BD and excited about the future.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 07/31/19 08:27 PM
Journaling:

I survived the move last weekend. Not cheap but money well spent to hire the movers. I still have some smaller items to split up with W but the big stuff is out and in my new place. Now the settling in process starts. Kids first night will be this Friday, they wanted it sooner but I need to get things set up for them.

Still trying to get a handle on my 180 to be less frosty to the W. I was just reading back through my threads - I think this is a good exercise - and pulled this timely nugget from AnotherStander:

It's never too late to do a 180. Whether you do a 180 the day after BD or 10 months after doesn't really matter because brother, you already got BD'd. So ANY 180 is an improvement, right?

I can and will get to where I need to be on this issue. Every interaction is a new opportunity to get it right. The only thing stopping me is me.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 07/31/19 09:21 PM
Gekko - It's hard work moving and getting a place set up for the kids in a short amount of time. Well done. I'm impressed you'll be ready in under a week!

There is a fine line between loving detachment and icy detachment. Especially when NSO is thrown into the mix. I don't know how you are planning to interact with your W going forward, but it's hard not be frosty when almost every interaction and conversation is purely logistical. Having awareness of the NSO in the first place will probably help you avoid passive-aggressiveness, etc.

I'm curious how you plan to interact with your W going forward (like, do you actually have a plan in mind for how often you will communicate, etc.)? It helped us a lot to implement a system. Weekly call with a pre-set agenda, weekly MC, sometimes we allow the other to video chat with the kids -- otherwise text only as needed for logistics. It's working about as well as I could expect, which is better than before.

I find the best opportunities to demonstrate changes are when we have conflict, in particular during our weekly phone chat. The rest of the week, other than MC, we barely interact other than text (and text is an awful way to communicate so I keep it to a bare minimum). MC feels like a bit of an artificial setup, we are not in our natural habitat so to speak, so I don't see it as the best way to demonstrate change.

It also helps when we talk that we always discuss in our phone chat how the kids are adjusting. Regardless of the chasm between us, we both obviously love our kids very much and take it seriously how they are adjusting. I am thankful that my W is not so stone-hearted that we are unable to talk about this.

Anyways... long-winded way of saying that even as co-parents you will have opportunities to work on your 180s. These may be different opportunities than before. It's good for your kids to try to model healthy behaviors for them (obviously you can't control your W but you can do the best you can). And obviously good for you.
Posted By: AnotherStander Re: Charting My Course - 08/01/19 03:47 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
I survived the move last weekend.


Glad to hear it's done, I think this is arguably the most difficult thing to go through after BD. All downhill from here!

Quote
and pulled this timely nugget from AnotherStander:


I don't even remember saying that, but I like it grin
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 08/02/19 05:43 PM
Originally Posted by unchien
I'm curious how you plan to interact with your W going forward (like, do you actually have a plan in mind for how often you will communicate, etc.)? It helped us a lot to implement a system.


No plan here yet other than communicate as infrequently and briefly as possible, LOL.

I suspect we will handle 90% of communication via a quick text once D is final. The kids have always had a pretty set schedule that runs fairly smooth, and we have childcare help from a local college girl, so W and I should only need to communicate regarding major schedule changes, serious behavioral issues and the like. I could see one or two texts a week for starters, then hopefully much, much less.
Posted By: AnotherStander Re: Charting My Course - 08/02/19 05:58 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
I suspect we will handle 90% of communication via a quick text once D is final. The kids have always had a pretty set schedule that runs fairly smooth, and we have childcare help from a local college girl, so W and I should only need to communicate regarding major schedule changes, serious behavioral issues and the like. I could see one or two texts a week for starters, then hopefully much, much less.


That's exactly how it went for me at first. Then XW more and more started reaching out for stuff she didn't need to, then asking if I wanted to go along on stuff she was doing with the kids. They back way off and then start moving closer again oh so slowly.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 08/07/19 06:07 AM
Just got through the first weekend with the kids in my new place, it was fantastic. They had already picked out their own bedroom sets and sheets/comforters, I involved them in the whole process. Over the next few weeks we will work on picking out stuff for their walls and I will be getting a few new pieces of furniture for the house and getting more art and pictures up throughout the house. I finally hung the flatscreen in the living room, it looks great. I lost about 1200 sq. ft in the move and am feeling it, but its okay, first-world problem....

The kids were outside constantly, playing with other kids on the street, I even let them out after dinner when we usually start winding things down. I'm no Disney Dad but I do want them to have fun and will certainly loosen things up on summer weekend nights. W runs a very tight ship - as my Aunt says W is very "rigid" - I am no pushover but know when to let out the leash a little. I think the kids are going to enjoy this neighborhood, including a community pool that is heated and is a gathering place that gets almost year-round use.

With the move, settling in, hanging with the kids, busy career, nights out with friends, gym, and other GAL stuff I have barely given W a thought. I really don't care what she's doing or with whom if anyone. I'm just too busy. When I think of a woman's touch it's not hers. I followed my moral compass and made zero efforts toward any OW during my 9 month IHS. But i'm out now, W fired me. So I'm working on my weak spots and making myself into an even better man, so something very very positive is coming out of my sitch. I will be a better man, and find myself with a better woman.

Everyone knows that old saying "Living Well is the Best Revenge". I'm not into the revenge thing, I don't care enough to seek it, I just want to be happy and it has nothing to do with anyone else being unhappy including W. I'm not saying i'm overtly wishing W happiness with some OM, i'm not there, i'm just for the most part indifferent at the moment. Revenge? Not part of the deal for me, so I prefer to just say "Living Well is the Best".
Posted By: AnotherStander Re: Charting My Course - 08/07/19 01:49 PM
Great update Gekko!

Quote
I just want to be happy and it has nothing to do with anyone else being unhappy including W.


^^^YES YES a thousand times YES!
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 08/08/19 05:24 PM


I think every newbee should read your thread and follow you lead.

Enjoy your kids and your freedom.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 08/09/19 03:28 PM
Originally Posted by Ready2Change


I think every newbee should read your thread and follow you lead.

Enjoy your kids and your freedom.

I agree. Gekko, your posts always sound so balanced and thoughtful. In fact I often want to respond but I have nothing to say other than... this guy is handling things so well!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 08/16/19 06:13 PM
Thanks for the kind words all! This can be really tough stuff, and I can totally understand how sometimes a LBS may just want to curl up in a ball and close their eyes to it all. But you know what they say about when the going gets tough?

I am getting fairly frequent (every other day) texts from W about kid logistic stuff and I can't tell you how weary I am getting. W is very high strung and anxious and it's always something. I am keeping my responses very short but I can't ignore the kid stuff. I know my mindset is not yet where it needs to be because I just don't like the feeling when I see W's number pop up on my phone. I would prefer much less contact.

W just took the kids on a vacation and I am doing the same soon. I'm excited to get on a plane with just the kids and me and to be able to run the whole vacation itinerary myself. W has control and micro-management issues and it will be nice to be free of that on a vacation.

The biggest looming thing on the horizon is setting a firm custody schedule. I will keep the board posted on how that goes, I am certain there are going to be some choppy waters on that topic.

I am feeling an increasing level of independence and freedom as I transition into single life. I think there are going to be a lot of great developments on the road ahead. I am moving very slowly and plan to continue to do so. One of the benefits of moving slowly is that it is easier to see and enjoy what is right in front of you and to live more in the moment, instead of screaming down the freeway where everything is a blur.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 08/16/19 11:33 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
I am getting fairly frequent (every other day) texts from W about kid logistic stuff and I can't tell you how weary I am getting. W is very high strung and anxious and it's always something. I am keeping my responses very short but I can't ignore the kid stuff. I know my mindset is not yet where it needs to be because I just don't like the feeling when I see W's number pop up on my phone. I would prefer much less contact.

My W is also high strung and controlling. I have an ominous ringtone for my W's texts just so I don't get anxious when other texts arrive. (It also provides me a little dark humor).

We are experimenting with a weekly call to hash out what we can, and then texts for logistics only. There are pro's and con's. The calls are definitely a healthier way to communicate, but by the end I am completely spent. It does help put off non-critical items that we can discuss all at one time.

I'd say just hang in there and be consistent. Over time hopefully your W will adjust and tone it down - people tend to mirror moods. We are almost 2 months in now, there are microscopic movements towards healthier communication. My W has shown some glimmers of awareness about her mind-reading and emotional reasoning. It's still a daily struggle to navigate the minefield of communicating.

Is she getting triggered emotionally a lot on text messages? Or is she just high strung and texting a lot about minor stuff?

Originally Posted by Gekko
W just took the kids on a vacation and I am doing the same soon. I'm excited to get on a plane with just the kids and me and to be able to run the whole vacation itinerary myself. W has control and micro-management issues and it will be nice to be free of that on a vacation.

Yes! You are going to love this part. I just did this 2 weeks ago. All the complaining about how hard it was to plan a vacation and keep track of the kids clothes and meals etc... I loved being in complete control, it was a big confidence boost for my ability to be a single dad going forward. Memories that I will never forget.

Originally Posted by Gekko
The biggest looming thing on the horizon is setting a firm custody schedule. I will keep the board posted on how that goes, I am certain there are going to be some choppy waters on that topic.

Where are you at today regarding custody? Are you targeting 50-50?

I think you have the right mindset taking it slow right now. When I moved out I went a little overboard the first few weeks and wore myself out, now I'm recalibrating.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 08/19/19 05:29 PM
Hey unchien, thanks again for the input.

My W does not come across as overly emotional or triggered in her texts, it is just the volume that is my issue. And emails as well. If anything I could say that I am somewhat triggered by the volume, LOL. I really want to keep the level and frequency of communication to a minimum, while understanding that yes we do need to communicate on kids stuff.

We already have a 50-50 custody agreement but it is very general because we can not agree on who gets what days. We have been handling it on the fly because of summer schedules, but once school starts I want a set schedule. We have a court date in September so I need to get papers together for that, and I will be requesting my preferred schedule. We'll see if we can reach an agreement before then...

I took a few weeks off the self-improvement podcast/YouTube circuit but have gotten back into it the past few days and it's been good for my head. Even though a lot of the advice is stuff I know and already practice, it's still good to hear it and reinforce that I am on the right track. I find myself more open these days to acknowledge and work on my weak spots. It reminds me of a professor I once had who analogized learning with physical workouts. He said there is a tendency for people to keep working out the same muscle groups in the same way because that is where they are strongest and they have a history of success and familiarity - like the guys who focus on chest and arms in the gym and ignore legs. So they end up with chicken legs and a big upper body, an unbalanced body. This professor said to focus on your legs aka focus on your weak spots, don't neglect them.

I am craving intimacy. W, even when things were good, is not a particularly affectionate person. She also repelled me with her criticisms and snide commentary, so there was a chasm between us. I have a tremendous connection with friends and family but have missed and am missing a romantic connection. I am taking my time with it and have not really taken any steps toward romance with anyone yet, and when I do it's going to be slow going. I do think about it, what it's going to be like, how I'm going to feel. I'm pretty excited about what could be in store for me. I wonder what it's going to be like "out there". It's going to be an adventure.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 08/22/19 06:41 PM
Gekko -

Criticism - your posts are always so well thought out that it's hard to respond with anything useful!

The volume of interaction is exhausting, I completely hear you. My W will go a couple weeks without much interaction, then flood my e-mail in box with 6 different items of various levels of importance. Some are important, some are not. I just want to come home from work, do something fun, and not deal with it at all sometimes.

I think you have the right idea to take any romantic connection slowly. A good divorced friend of mine has warned, "Beware the rebound!"
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 08/22/19 07:02 PM
Originally Posted by unchien
Criticism - your posts are always so well thought out that it's hard to respond with anything useful!
I agree.
Posted By: DejaVu6 Re: Charting My Course - 08/22/19 07:19 PM
Did you go on vacation with your kids yet Gekko or is that still happening? If you did, how was it? I took my kids to San Diego during Spring Break. It was great fun!! I agree with all the others. Sounds like you are doing great. I, too, missed the intimacy as it was gone from my marriage for a long time. It took awhile for me to really recognize that and to know that I deserve better. You do too and I have no doubt you will have it again. (((HUGS)))
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 08/24/19 06:34 PM
Thanks all for the kind words. We leave on vacation today. S is crying, he says he didn't know W wasn't coming despite having told him many times it would just be the 3 of us. D is fine. S doesn't want to go at the moment but he will come around once we get moving. It's hard to experience but this is our new life. As for me, despite S's mood I am happy to be doing the trip without W, who would be trying to constantly control everything.

As a child of divorce I know the future off my little family of 3 will have its bumps in the road specifically due to the D, I am not envisioning ever really crossing the goal line and spiking the ball, even after my kids launch, but even parents in intact families never cross that line, you always worry to an extent and there are always issues. My mom's husband has kids in their 50's and there are still big issues.

I feel strong as an ox, mentally, emotionally, physically even in my advanced age :)Ö..but I can confide in this group that sometimes it's hard to be strong all the time. I have my moments of doubt and weakness. I have them privately and I let them come and pass like clouds on a mountaintop. When they pass I am still on the mountaintop. I think having those moments actually somehow makes me stronger overall, I can't explain why but I think its true. I'm not a Terminator, I'm human, and I accept my weaknesses and flaws and work on them and work to be better and stronger. I think its just part of the human experience, something that I want to embrace fully. Overall I like how I am feeling and I am so optimistic about what lay ahead for me and my kids.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 08/24/19 10:04 PM

We are emotional beings. Allowing one emotion out lets the opposite come out better. A good cry will allow you to be happier.
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 08/26/19 03:31 AM
Hi Gekko

Just chiming in to wish you luck with everything and to thank you as I've really related to your story. I've read your sitch and your wife sounds very, very much like my XW in many respects. All the best mate!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 09/04/19 05:28 PM
Thanks R2C and DS9.

Journaling:

Very nice vacation visiting family, but good to be back home, kids are in school and we are settling into a schedule. Still working on the final details of a final agreement with W. My L says we may be able to have everything done and the judge may give his blessing by Thanksgiving.

My new home is coming together but lots of details left - empty wall space, need a rug for the living room, etc. My goal was to have this done already but life gets in the way sometimes. My new goal is to have everything done by the end of September so I can just enjoy the place.

I am in my 11th month post-BD and feeling really good. I continue to have zero thoughts of reconciliation. I can do much better than her. I won't ever give my precious limited time on this planet to someone who does not treat me well. I stuck with her for years and ground it out because we had kids together. She probably would say the same LOL. But what she might say doesn't matter to me at this point. I know my flaws, I know what I could have done better in responding to her shyt, I've done the work to figure that out and am still doing work on me. I'll never stop doing work on me, never again, that's my promise to myself and my kids and the eventual new lover in my life.

Even if I would have made every perfect move with my W I don't know that things would have worked out. I don't know that I could have stopped that nasty, snide, critical spew from her. She's always, according to her family, had that part of her personality. Whatever flaws I have, whatever mistakes I made, didn't create her issues. They pre-existed in her before she even knew I was alive.

So I am feeling great. I have been hitting the gym hard, which is a key element to my mindset. I've buffed up my wardrobe. Eating very healthy every day, drinking lots of water, very little sugar. Trying to get at least 7 hours of sleep. Digging back in at work, which was the one thing I was letting slip. Keeping my haircut short, getting to the Dr. and Dentist, staying on top of my health. Spending quality time with friends and getting out and about. Finances are in very good shape despite the pending D. And connecting deeper with my kids. Life is pretty awesome right now. I'm looking forward to getting out on dates soon. I think it will be this month or next when I get that going. Slowly! I think it's going to be really fun, I have high hopes and optimism. What a journey.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 09/04/19 06:11 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
I am in my 11th month post-BD and feeling really good.... Life is pretty awesome right now.
whistle
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 09/10/19 10:40 PM
Journaling:

No further progress on a final settlement with W, but I think we will be pretty close by the end of the month. There do not appear to be any major issues but with her you can never be quite sure what might pop-up. I want a very detailed agreement but I understand that as the kids get older schedules and details will change and some flexibility is necessary, and changes will be made. Whatever is best for kids. I have to deal with W for many years to come, there is no way around it, unfortunately. But I have really been enjoying the space and my uninterrupted time with the kids. It's so amazing.

I have been in my new place for a few months now and still no physical movement toward dating. I have been thinking about it a lot, but no action. I have no set time frame (other than in the past when I would not do it while IHS) so I don't know exactly when and what I'm going to do. I know a few women who are D'd and single, one who is part of my group of friends, and I have thought about them. I don't know what I'll do about them. And then of course there is the great unknown out there, the universe of women who I don't know yet. Who knows what's out there? It's an exciting thought, the feeling of venturing out and experiencing my area as a single guy again. Maybe my tune will change after I'm at it for awhile, LOL. But right now, the feeling of freedom, freedom from W's judgment and criticism and control, and freedom to do what I want for the most part, is invigorating. It's not a perfect analogy, but I feel kind of like Morgan Freeman at the end of Shawshank Redemption, when he is on the bus heading to the border:

"I find I'm so excited I can barely sit still or hold a thought in my head. I think it's the excitement only a free man can feel. A free man at the start of a long journey... ...whose conclusion is uncertain."



Sure I am sad the my MR is ending, and I do look back for the purpose of finding my flaws and improving myself, and figuring out wtf happened. There's value in that, quite a bit actually, but it's all for the purpose of self-improvement and future happiness. It's about moving forward for me. I get another shot at a new R, and I'm optimistic it's going to be a really amazing one when it happens.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 09/11/19 03:23 AM
Originally Posted by Gekko
But I have really been enjoying the space and my uninterrupted time with the kids. It's so amazing....But right now, the feeling of freedom, freedom from W's judgement and criticism and control, and freedom to do what I want for the most part, is invigorating. ... I think it's the excitement only a free man can feel.
Ejoy it now. It typically doesn't last long....I was single and free for less than 2 years....
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 09/11/19 05:29 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
It's not a perfect analogy, but I feel kind of like Morgan Freeman at the end of Shawshank Redemption, when he is on the bus heading to the border:

"I find I'm so excited I can barely sit still or hold a thought in my head. I think it's the excitement only a free man can feel. A free man at the start of a long journey... ...whose conclusion is uncertain."



Do you also sometimes feel like Tim Robbins after crawling through 500 yards of sh*t-smelling foulness to reach his freedom?
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 09/16/19 10:00 PM
Originally Posted by Ready2Change
Originally Posted by Gekko
But I have really been enjoying the space and my uninterrupted time with the kids. It's so amazing....But right now, the feeling of freedom, freedom from W's judgement and criticism and control, and freedom to do what I want for the most part, is invigorating. ... I think it's the excitement only a free man can feel.
Ejoy it now. It typically doesn't last long....I was single and free for less than 2 years....


I'm guesstimating I may be on a similar timeline and we'll see how it all plays out. No expectations. I feel like I may end up on some dates in October, which will be my 3rd month out on my own and around the 1 year anniversary of BD. I suspect there may be a "blast from the past" or two mixed in there. Casually.

I went to a small party over the weekend, about 15 of us who have been friends for 25 years, lots of laughs and old stories. Good for the soul, amazing people, got several texts the next day about how good and happy I looked, the bright future, all that kind of stuff. That felt good to read. When I say I'm doing great I mean it, it's not a front or an act for my friends, and they can feel it. If I'm feeling this good now, in the middle of a D after a toxic R, how good am I going to feel when I am more clear of it all? It's going to be really amazing, I think.

There was a gal at the party who I have known for 20 years who is also D'd. First time we have ever been single at the same time. I had a little crush on her before I met W and that feeling started to creep back over the past year. I haven't said a thing or made any move and no plans to do so at the moment, I am going to play that very cool for awhile but she is on my mind. If I get some signals from her down the road it might be on. But not yet or soon. I'm going to enjoy some space for awhile.

The kids are great, I am giving them as much love as they can take in. It's soccer season so the weekends have games and good times on the sidelines with other parents. My W's incessant screaming at I mean encouraging the kids while they are playing is almost intolerable and I can't seem to get a video shot without her yelling in the background which is ungodly irritating, but i'm staying serene as possible. I just have to move way down the sideline or block the mic, LOL. I'll be fine, it's a marathon with another 15 years of these weekend sports events to go. No trigger, no safe space needed, no problem it's all good.
Posted By: Jac12 Re: Charting My Course - 09/17/19 01:22 AM
Man Gekko...I need to get where you're at.

Good for you man.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 09/17/19 04:33 PM
jac you will get there buddy, just dig in and do the work, one day at a time. 6 letters provide the foundation - PMA and GAL.


Originally Posted by unchien
Originally Posted by Gekko
It's not a perfect analogy, but I feel kind of like Morgan Freeman at the end of Shawshank Redemption, when he is on the bus heading to the border:

"I find I'm so excited I can barely sit still or hold a thought in my head. I think it's the excitement only a free man can feel. A free man at the start of a long journey... ...whose conclusion is uncertain."



Do you also sometimes feel like Tim Robbins after crawling through 500 yards of sh*t-smelling foulness to reach his freedom?


LOL. I do feel a little like Tim Robbins in the creek, arms extended to the sky. Now it's time to get dried off, put on the suit and do some business!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 09/23/19 07:49 PM
Journaling:

11 months post-BD. My venting to friends and family about W continues to dwindle. Everyone knows her personality and how she can be. I have received more than enough validation on this from all sides including her family and mutual friends. Unsolicited. I'm focusing as much as possible on staying on the high road, at least verbally. I can convey what I want to with a look or a shoulder shrug.

Still room for improvement in my interactions with W. I don't want to see her but I have to twice a week. I keep it cool and quick. Too cool, which is a sign I am not fully detached. We all have areas to improve, this is one of mine. I'm not going for warm, just less cool is the goal at this point. I can do it. When I am completely detached I believe I will feel it. It may take awhile longer, and that's okay, I am good with where my head is now 90% of the time. Getting all the way there is a process, and I am trying to be honest with myself and not buy into the false positives of "I'm detached!" that occur on the journey.

I am thoroughly enjoying my new home and could not imagine being back in my old house with W. It never even crosses my mind, not even in a flash millisecond. I am probably going to be a renter for a few years before i buy another house, and that's okay. I am living as much in the moment as possible. My life is so much better now than it was during IHS and during my MR after W ramped up her criticism and nastiness. No more walking on eggshells, no more getting prepped for conflict on the way home from work, no more power struggles, no more disrespect, no more blame-games, no more negativity and glass is half empty BS. It's over, and over for good. I can't believe i dealt with that shyt for so long, just goes to show the power of wanting to keep a family unit together is so strong, you do things your old self would laugh at and say "are you kidding, NEVER!" Now i can just say "NEVER AGAIN'.
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 09/23/19 11:50 PM
Bravo Gekko,

Great to hear you're doing so well mate.

I'm renting too. Like you, I couldn't stand IHS and reached the limits of my endurance when I left. I'll be buying next year.

I also hear you about that prep on the drive home for conflict! I used to repeat the word 'calm' over and over on the drive home from work.

When I first came here your story was one of the first I read. Your XW sounded very, very, very similar to mine.

Good luck mate!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 09/26/19 06:09 PM
Thanks DS9.

This whole BD and D process has been an incredible journey of self-evaluation and self-improvement (in addition to analyzing W's flaws LOL). I thought I had it together and had things pretty well figured out before, but there is always room for improvement and growth. I have learned more than I could have imagined, going through my sitch. Crazy as it might sound, for that I am thankful. I am much improved as a person and as a future mate because of this journey, and more improvement lay ahead. What a ride it's been!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 09/30/19 06:05 PM
Journaling:

As part of my self-improvement process, I have been focusing on validating. On everyone - my kids, friends, family, and the girl that cuts my hair LOL. It's so great. I am also consciously focusing on asking more questions and talking a little bit less. These "little things" are actually not so little because they yield big results that I can feel as the interaction is happening. I have always been very social and feel like I have had a pretty good skill set there, but these tweaks are really making a difference, a noticeable improvement. There is always always always room for improvement.

After a few weeks off I am back into YouTube pretty heavily, on my iPhone with the headphones, in the gym, in the car to/from work, while I am alone in the house doing tasks, etc. All self-improvement related. The great stuff, I will listen to over and over, the repetition helps it sink in. I am re-visiting vids from many months ago for refreshers. I am quick to identify the junk and move on, and by now I have a good list of who knows their stuff and I focus on them. Not just relationship stuff, but core self-improvement as well, along with health, grooming, fashion, you name it. Even though there is a lot of content that I already know and apply, it's still good to hear it anyway. It's good to reinforce what you are doing right and identify weak spots that need shoring up.

I am getting close to a final custody schedule and getting the papers together to get this D done before the end of the year. It's really not over when the papers are signed, I still have to deal with W forever due to the kids. It's a marathon even more so than our sitches are. It's forever. Occasionally I find myself thinking "W you had your shot with me, you drove me away with your attitude, you blew it, you could have had me forever". That's very occasionally. Mostly I don't think about her as I am too busy with career, kids, gym, travel and friends. The type of person she is doesn't fit with my future plans and lifestyle. It no longer matters who she was when we were dating, when she won me over and I put the ring on her finger. It only matters who she became, or should I say who she always was deep inside according to her family, and who she unleashed on me after we got married and had kids. I don't want that type of person in my life.

So I am still feeling really good, I think I'm on a good trajectory, no dating yet but it remains on the horizon and will happen when I make it happen, I will do so when I am really fully ready. I must not be yet because I haven't made a move yet. I am inching closer to it. It will probably be triggered when I am out and about with no intentions, that's how it always has gone with me. Get out, GAL, and amazing things seem to fall in your lap. They come to you. It's kind of like gravity. When that is happening I know I am back 100% on my game. I'm feeling about 90% now, so I'm close. The excitement of a wide open road ahead, what a feeling.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 10/10/19 06:06 PM
Journaling:

The past few weeks have been busy at the office and making time fly by. I squeezed in a weekend away with 3 of my best friends - great dinner, drinks, smart talk - all good stuff. Other than that GAL activities have been a little slow due to work. I had tentative plans to meet up with some of the guys in the neighborhood last Saturday night but everyone bailed on it, so I just went to the gym late, came home, had a beer, handled a few tasks at the house and got to bed early and hit the ground running hard on Sunday a.m.

The kids are doing very well and continue to enjoy our new house and neighborhood. It actually could not be going better, and that's a blessing. I'm keeping a close eye on them and so far so great.

I read a lot of other sitch threads here but haven't had the time to comment much. A lot of people who started posting here around the same time I did have disappeared, kind of a bummer as I wonder sometimes how things are going, but I understand that it's probably a high percentage of people who just kind of fade away.

I haven't started yet but I do enjoy dating. It's going to be cool and little wild to be back out there again, it's been awhile. It's a silver lining of my sitch honestly - I get to go back out and meet a bunch of different women and have a lot of fun with it (for the most part....:) I'm inching closer to reaching out to a few women who I have had in mind. Keep you posted LOL.

I'm hitting the 1 Year Post-BD point and 2.5 months of full physical separation. Incredible. Living in the old house with W is becoming a fading memory. I love the freedom and peace in my new place.

A friend of mine said to me how great next year is going to be for me, fully turn the page, etc. I said things are great RIGHT NOW, and this is year isn't over yet - don't rush me into next year, there's lots of good times before the calendar flips!
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 10/10/19 06:10 PM

Thanks for sharing. Enjoy your freedom and "Alone time" now. You do not get these opportunities very often in life.
Posted By: Adam04 Re: Charting My Course - 10/11/19 02:06 AM
Gekko,

Itís good to hear the update. Continue to spread the joy each and every day. Sounds like youíre doing awesome.
Great job, great kids, great friends, and great future ahead. Youíve been there and back and can hold your head up high.

Like R2C said, enjoy this time as much as you can.

I know youíre going to kill it in the dating world.
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 10/11/19 04:57 AM
Good work Gekko! Excellent! Have a blast with dating.

If you get time, I'd appreciate you checking out my thread - as I've mentioned, my XW sounds similar to yours and I'd value any inside knowledge mate!

Cheers, DS
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 10/16/19 05:30 PM
Thanks guys for continuing to read and comment.

I had a few hours yesterday when I was down. It was based on my parents voicing concerns about how the kids and I are doing. This has been happening from time to time since I first BD'd them. They are not local BTW.

I think I just hit a spot after hanging up the phone with my dad where I felt weary and frustrated with having to reassure him and my mom all the time. I would think by now that with my track record that they would be more like my friends, who are universally saying "you look great", "you are handling this unbelievably well but we expected that", etc etc. Not "we are just so worried about you and the kids". None of that.

I guess people who play the "I'm really concerned" card may not realize that that can and often does burden the person they are saying that to. So I am navigating my own sitch and I also have to continually reassure you? Okay...

I'm venting a bit here obviously. I love my parents and hate that they are in pain over my sitch. I get that parents worry. I'm not holding it against them. I just had a moment of some weakness yesterday when I got tired of having to be the one providing comfort and reassurance.

My head is back in a good space now, and I'm thankful to have this space to post. I have some great friends who are great to talk to about this kind of stuff, but this space is available 24/7, and that is an incredible outlet. I'm wearing a pretty big smile at this exact moment, I feel like some great things are going to happen today.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 10/16/19 05:52 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
I had a few hours yesterday when I was down.
It is perfectly OK, and is actually healthy to go up and down. The deeper down you let yourself go, the higher up you can go. Let out the "bad" emotions in private, never around the W.
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 10/16/19 10:59 PM
Hey Gekko

Sorry to hear the the oldies got you down momentarily. My dad's passed a few years ago and I barely speak to my mum, so I don't have that problem usually. My mum's a bit of a drag actually so that's why I rarely speak with her. Your parents mean well though. It helps switching off in your mind when concerned caring people call you up to check in.

How's the dating going mate?

Cheers DS
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 10/21/19 09:47 PM
Originally Posted by DS9


How's the dating going mate?



I'm just about ready to get it going in terms of casting some lines. My head in getting into the space where I see potential everywhere. I have an early p.m. party to attend this weekend which is likely to be followed by drinks out and about with some friends, so we'll see what develops.

I'm at 1 year BD, it's just amazing how the time has flown. I feel like a much better person these days. I feel like a combination of having my old mojo back and also new and improved in many areas. It's going to be great to interact with women on a romantic level again.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 10/29/19 09:31 PM
Not much new in Gekkoland, just been grinding away at work and getting ready for Halloween with the kids. W and I will both go with them trick-or-treating along with some of their friends and their parents. It will be fun. Halloween has always been once of my favorite events, even as an adult. I can deal with W for a few hours, no problem.

I went to a party at some friends' house last weekend, there were about 30 of us there, drinking and eating and having a lot of laughs. On the way there one of my male friends told me that our mutual female divorced friend would be there and that I should be considering hooking up with her. I told him that she had been on my mind a bit, and he said he would be concerned if I hadn't been thinking about her. I thought that was an interesting comment. We hung out in a group and had a great time but she had to leave early so nothing happened. No biggie, no rush, and no expectation of any particular outcome.

W's name came up and I was asked by some of the women there about how things were going. I gave my standard response, it's not War of the Roses, it's fine, it's all about the kids, etc. One of the wives said how much she misses the four of us (her and her H, me and W) going out to dinner and drinks. I said don't worry plenty of dinners to come with me, just with a different date, said it with a big smile. I said you will also get your dinner with W and her new guy and she said "i'm not so sure about that, I haven't talked to her in quite awhile." W is just not that popular these days. I've posted plenty about the comments made about her by my friends and mutual friends. I've said it before I am done piling on, it's high road all the way. The view is much better and the air is much cleaner on the high road.

Over the weekend I hung a few new pieces of art, cleaned some of the garage, cleaned all the bathrooms, did all the laundry, got to the gym, cleaned my car, went to a party, grocery shopped, watched football, planned a trip for after Christmas, put together a Halloween outfit, and chatted up one of my neighbors who is divorced and a complete knockout. Felt like I could have squeezed more fun GAL in but i'm satisfied. Halloween and another weekend coming up, should be a good one.

Still working on finalizing D settlement details. More to come on that in my next post.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 10/29/19 11:01 PM
whistle whistle whistle
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 10/30/19 05:25 AM
Nice one Gekko! Great to see the ladies are showing an interest.

With all those house chores and decorating you do and are familiar with, I can suggest trying during conversation with a lady to mention that - Lady - "Hey Gekko, what are you up to this weekend?" Gekko - "Geez, I've got an exciting one planned! - I'm actually getting stuck into bleaching the shower, cleaning the ceiling fan blades and dusting the skirting boards, and then heading out to buy some new homewares!"

Try it.

Cheers, DS
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 11/04/19 07:03 PM
Thanks DS9, I enjoy the joking banter very much and it usually goes over well.

As I have posted I have been incrementally moving toward getting a dating life going but nothing set yet. I am heading into Month 13 post-BD and Month 3 physical separation. I thought October might be the month that I started but i did not make it happen so it must not have been time. I'm looking forward to it but i won't force it. Once i break the seal it will be game on. In the meantime i have been enjoying my days with the kids immensely and being very productive on my days off. Life has been full.

The settlement with W is coming along and we are down to some finer points that hopefully can be worked out over the next few weeks. I would like to have a signed agreement before the end of the year. I have long since moved on in my head and heart, and I want it formalized legally.

I remain cordial and all-business with the W. I am not quite as short and frosty as i have been, so there is some progress there. We will always have an R to some degree because of the kids. The way things unfold and the temperature of the R in the future is unknown. I know some vets have decent R's with the ex. Every dynamic is different. Something in the cordial to friendly zone is my goal for the kids sake and yes for my own sake as well. It's not healthy to harbor resentment. The more i have focused on the beauty of the present, and the horizon ahead, the less i think about W's past behavior. And my own for that matter. I've accepted my flaws and my role and am going to continue to work to be a better man. It's actually a fun process.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 11/07/19 06:24 PM
While working on an art project with D(5):

D(5): "daddy, do you still like mommy?"

Me: "Yes, of course I do. I love mommy."

I was open to talk more on the subject but D(5) was done and focused on the art project so I let her lead so to speak.

I imagine from time to time over the months and years I will get these types of questions and the "what happened" question. Maybe not. One day at a time.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 11/07/19 06:39 PM

You are a great dad! Enjoy your kids. They grow up too fast. 2 of mine are at University and my D will graduate high school this year.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 11/13/19 07:34 PM
Yes R2C time does fly by doesn't it. I have enjoyed every single stage of the kids growth. I love who they are and who they are becoming. I will often put tasks aside to play and do projects with them. I want them to see that it's okay to set things aside for a bit to get quality time together. I don't always set tasks aside because they also need to see that some things need to get done. It's a balancing act. There are lessons to teach every moment of the day. I also learn so much from them as well. It is an incredible experience.

I had a fantastic GAL weekend - drinks out with friends on both Saturday and Sunday nights, hit the gym both days, sold some stuff on Craigslist, kids sports, fun project with the kids, and a ton of tasks accomplished. It feels so good to be really productive. I soaked up a bunch of short self-improvement videos on youtube as well. My weekends for the rest of the year are filling up rapidly with events as the holiday season approaches.

The ball is now in W's court regarding the settlement agreement. I feel we are getting close.

This morning, for the first time, I felt kinda bad for my W. She is so high strung and anxious. It must be horrible to feel that way all the time - easily irritated, frustrated, angry, etc. Like sitting on a powderkeg and everyone around you is holding a book of matches. It's too bad she would not get the help she needed when I suggested it so many years ago. I could have been more forceful and probably made that happen, but I don't blame myself, no no. She is responsible for herself. While I do feel a little bad for her due to the anxiety which she probably wishes she didn't have, there was no need for her to be so nasty, snide, critical, etc. Plenty of people are anxious but don't spew such repulsive BS as she does. There was no need for the constant disrespect. Her anger management issues and nastiness are downright corrosive. Toxic.

I cannot begin to explain how happy I am to be out of the daily line of fire. I run my house without oversight, without anyone hovering and trying to control everything, without condescending comments, criticism, eye-rolls or "mmm-hmms" if you know what I mean. The sense of relief has been incredible. I never let W control me or get away with her BS remarks without a response from me, I never laid down and cowered and took it, but the constant power struggle and verbal sparring was exhausting.

So I am going through a D, and with a PMA things are better than they have been in a long time. It's not pump-myself-up BS. I am a better Dad, better son, brother, friend and person today than I was when the M was banging up on the rocks week after week. You know how you can go outside in the sun after a rainstorm and everything looks clearer, more focused, more vibrant? That is my view these days. No, life is not all sunshine and rainbows, but so what, it's still pretty great to be alive. The possibilities of what the day holds, or the week, or next year, are really endless. It's exciting. There is zero chance that a R that went bad is going to derail my train, there is just no way. I have too much to be thankful for and too much to look forward to. Big cheesy smile on my face now...
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 12/01/19 08:26 PM
I hope everyone here in the States had a great Thanksgiving. We all have different sitches and lives with varying degrees of stressors but there are always things to be thankful for, and I hope everyone finds those things. And commits to filling their lives with more of them.

As for me Thanksgiving was great, spent it with old friends who host many events. 15 of us, including my kids and yes W was there. I originally got the invite from my friends (older married couple), and then they followed up saying that W was also welcome if that would make things easier. They are "my" friends from long before I knew W. W does not typically communicate with them or see them without me, and they know all about the details of my sitch, we are that close.

W was the first one to raise doing Thanksgiving together and asked me what my plans were. I told her about my friends hosting and she said she would like to go and do it with us. Personally I really did not want her there and came close to saying so (nicely...) but with the kids in mind I said okay, then told my friends and they added W to the text group. I felt at the time it was the right decision for the kids sake on a holiday, especially since it is so early in life-change process, and now that the day is over I feel the same, it was the right call.

Several times at the event I had 1-on-1 conversations off to the side with another female friend who was there whose H just filed for D. She said she was sorry to hear about me and W. I gave her some insight into the process and let her know she could reach out to me anytime. We talked mostly about positive fun stuff and had some great laughs. She's attractive but I'm not interested in her at all romantically. I think W definitely noticed our interactions from across the room. I spent zero 1-on-1 time with W.

W initiated physical contact with me for the first time since BD. She was trying to get past me in the kitchen with a tray of food and I had my back to her, and she stuck her butt out and knocked my leg as if I were in the way. I turned as she went by. I noticed she had plenty of room to get by without doing that. Then later she wanted a "family" photo of us with kids, which I obliged. My S was between W and I but she put her arm behind S and across to me, with her hand on my back, which she left there just a tiny bit longer than necessary after the picture was taken. At the end of the night, W left first and when saying goodbye tried to hold my gaze longer and her eyes had a flicker to them. So based on these developments the D is definitely off and we are now R'd....!!!!

I'm not looking at these tiny subtle little things from W at 13 months post-BD as having any consequence whatsoever. Whether a temp check, or feeling emotional and nostalgic at the holidays, or jealous due to my interacting with another woman, or an olive branch for friendship, or too much wine, or......, at the end of the day none of it really matters to me. I don't care enough to read the tea leaves or mind-read, I just don't. Why not? Because W would have to radically change some fundamental core parts of her personality in order to get me interested again. Otherwise, why in the world would I ever consider going back for more of the same? No chance, as in zero chance. I have faced the hard truth that I want to be with a woman whose is the opposite of W in many ways. While there is a certain sadness that comes with this realization, there is also an incredible feeling of liberation, and hopefulness and excitement for a future R with an amazing person who has what I'm looking for.

So again the question arises why am I here if I am not trying to DB? What value does my story offer? Is it helping or hurting all those here who so desperately want to R? I know posting here has helped me tremendously, but at what cost to others? I doubt I'll provide the successful R story that so many want to hear, one that will make them feel like maybe it will happen for them too. Most others here won't provide that success story either I'm afraid, but at least they have a DB goal of saving their M and are thus more relatable. I've got a different thing going in my sitch, a different mindset. So sure I wonder what am doing here on a DB forum? I have felt compelled to surf here and post about my sitch, that's all I can say, so here I am again. But I continue to have a lot to think about as I am turning the page to a new and more incredible life.
Posted By: LH19 Re: Charting My Course - 12/01/19 08:42 PM
G,

Yeah man I bet itís a little bit of all those things you mentioned. Thereís something still there thatís for sure.

Iíve been doing some reflecting the past few days and I think youíre dead on that there is no way that can do the work and make the core changes necessary to try again.
Posted By: unchien Re: Charting My Course - 12/01/19 10:53 PM
Gekko-

Please do keep posting. I enjoy your updates and draw strength from your level headed resolve. I also feel I am in a similar position as you, wondering why Iím posting here anymore sometimes given I donít want to R.
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 12/02/19 12:50 AM
Hey Gekko,

That's such a great update mate. Thanks for sharing that. You're a model of how to move on, and I sincerely thank you again for your insight into ultra alpha women. Loved the bit too about XW pushing up against you!

From my perspective, the importance of people like you continue to post is that it helps people like me learn and grow.

Keep living life and keep posting (please)!

Cheers, DS
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 12/02/19 02:16 AM
Originally Posted by Gekko
So again the question arises why am I here if I am not trying to DB? What value does my story offer?
Your story shows people how they SHOULD BE THINKING AND BEHAVING. You have given W what she wanted. You are focused on yourself and your kids. You are not trying to jump to a new relationship to ease the pain.

You know what you want in a partner, and right now, it is not your W. IF she comes begging you to take her back, you will do the right thing and make her work hard to get you back.

You are the one of the guys here I can point to and say Read Gekko's thread, "DO WHAT HE DID".


HUGS
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 12/05/19 07:14 PM
Thanks guys.

14 months post-BD and now 4 months out on my own after IHS. Between being slammed at work, 3-4 nights with the kids, hitting the gym, travel, setting up the new house, going out with friends and some necessary solitary down time every week, I still have yet to go on a date. I felt "ready" months ago but haven't found the time to make it happen. Ready in my head, but that has not translated to action yet. I feel like the tortoise, not the hare.

I will say that going through the D process, I think my focus has been in the right spots, and dating is not one of them. Kids, taking care of physical/mental/emotional health, settlement and custody details, career, quality time with friends and family, GAL activities, time for just me - this is where my focus has been. Dating has not worked its way onto the priority list yet. Yet. It's eventually going to "make the cut" so to speak. I think about it a lot but I guess I'm just not quite there yet obviously.

So this weekend the kids and I head to the xmas tree lot to pick a great one and get the house decked out. Can't believe xmas is here already, this year just blasted by. I feel very positive going into the holiday and honestly no sadness the W and I are not together. It's going to be a great xmas season. The kids are very excited and it's wonderful to experience through their eyes.
Posted By: LH19 Re: Charting My Course - 12/05/19 07:28 PM
Gek,

Iím going to give you some advice based on what I experienced. Things are going to happen naturally at first. Youíre going to be out with friends and youíll meet women naturally. I would wait at least a year before moving to online dating. I started to soon and was a waste of peopleís time. The good ones wonít date a newly divorced guy. Like you said your schedule is full anyway.

Keep on keeping on brother!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 12/09/19 05:53 PM
Originally Posted by LH19
Gek,

I’m going to give you some advice based on what I experienced. Things are going to happen naturally at first. You’re going to be out with friends and you’ll meet women naturally. I would wait at least a year before moving to online dating. I started to soon and was a waste of people’s time. The good ones won’t date a newly divorced guy. Like you said your schedule is full anyway.

Keep on keeping on brother!


Thanks for the insight LH, always appreciated. Most of my dating and relationship history pre-dates the match.com era, except for about 3 years just prior to me meeting W. In those days I still met most prospects while out and about, and I used match.com to fill in any sparse spots. Had great success online with hooking up but nothing serious ever came out of it.

Interesting to hear you recommend to hold off on getting back online as I have been pondering it for a few months now to get things jump-started. But I haven't made any moves to create a profile and I think I subconsciously know it's not the right play now and that explains me dragging my feet. I think you're right about continuing to hold off on that for a bit longer.

Your observation that the top notch girls won't date a newly divorced guy also struck a chord. Honestly, I would probably advise any family member or good friend to steer clear of anyone who was just recently divorced or at least be extremely careful. I really haven't been taking my R status into consideration enough when evaluating my current market value. I mean I'm not even technically divorced yet. Been physically separated for only 4 months.

I suppose it might be somewhat moot because i'm not looking for another R at this stage, I'm just looking to keep things light and fun and easy. I'm too busy. So if a "keeper" type is going to steer clear because I'm too fresh off the end of my MR, that's perfectly okay, at least for now. I suspect that the point in time in the future when I am really ready to settle back into a R will coincide with the time when the highest quality women will feel I am far enough clear of the D for them. Funny how that works.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 12/09/19 07:15 PM

I second what LH said about waiting at least a year before even considering OLD. After my divorce was finalized, I intentionally did not use online dating. I enjoyed interacting with everyone. Some interactions lead to dates. One date lead to a now 9+ year relationship.

Enjoy being single. It will most likely be short.
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 12/11/19 08:36 PM
Originally Posted by Ready2Change

I second what LH said about waiting at least a year before even considering OLD. After my divorce was finalized, I intentionally did not use online dating. I enjoyed interacting with everyone. Some interactions lead to dates. One date lead to a now 9+ year relationship.

Enjoy being single. It will most likely be short.


Thanks my man. As always solid input from you and LH. I'm not going to force anything or move too fast.

Court date coming up right before Christmas and still no final settlement agreement with W. My L thinks we are pretty close but doubts we'll have it done before the holiday. At the moment the ball is in W's court as we have presented a proposed final agreement with no response yet. So it looks like things will carry over into the new year, hopefully not too far....

My interactions with W continue to be 100% business. Usually via text which works best for me. We did need to speak on the phone last week about a few pressing things with the kids, and W tried to expand the subject matter into other non-essential topics. Her already high baseline anxiety was going up as she started to repeat the same points over and over. When we were a couple I used to give her a long leash and listen to her say the same thing over and over because that's what she needed to help discharge her anxiety (although later in our M I grew weary of it, it just wore me down). Now I just cut her off and say I don't have the time to get into anything except "A" and "B" right now, that's what's pressing, we can talk about "C" through "Z" later. I'm simply not going to listen to the endless anxiety-ridden repetitive diatribe anymore, that will be for whatever new guy she brings into her life.

I will say that I do look forward to listening and validating in my future R's, I like letting women talk through their issues without me needing to "solve" the problem for them. I think it's kind of cute when they go through that process. I say that very respectfully. I had a huge smile on my face the last time a female friend did it to me over the phone a few weeks ago. When she was done, I could feel her relax even over the phone, and she then said "so, how are YOU?" It was awesome.

Since high school I had 3 longer-term girlfriends prior to W and plenty of short-term flings. What I learned before I even graduated college was that after a R of any length ends there will always be another great girl that will come along. All of my serious girlfriends, including W, just kind of fell into my lap more or less. I think if you focus on leading a full and fun-filled life, the women will just show up. Building a career, taking care of my financial, emotional, mental, spiritual and physical health has always paid enormous dividends, along with developing and maintaining close friendships, family connections, hobbies and interests. Some people don't want to put in the work, and what they get out of life will reflect what they put into it. Everyone on this forum is capable of being better, of putting in more effort and of building an incredible life, regardless of what happens with their M. Do the work and great things will come your way, you'll see.
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 12/12/19 11:48 PM
Hey Gekko

Hope the Court date goes well. How you coping with that stressor? Best of luck getting it settled by consent - it really is the best way.

Yet again your wife is similar to my XW, with the constant repetitous stream of consciousness and saying the same thing over and over. Your take on it being anxiety fuelled is interesting.

Like you, I've tried the validating with other women (not dates, just random women I interact with), and it does feel good, but more improtnatly to me, the women feel good as well, almost like a sense they are releived and connected. All part of women needing to feel emotional securtiy I guess. Learning about the concepts and principles of validation here has really helped me hone my listening skills

Good luck with the dating mate, and merry xmas.

Cheers, DS
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 12/18/19 07:58 PM
Thanks for checking in DS9. My court date is tomorrow and we do not have a final agreement yet. My L says at this point we are probably not going to get things finalized until after the holidays. He says we are just going to notify the judge that we are still working on it and we will get another court date in a few months. He thinks we can finalize a deal before then and file the papers with the court and not have to show up again - in an ideal world....we'll see. W's turnaround time has been very slow.

This may sound hard to believe but i'm really not nervous or concerned about the court stuff. Between my L and several friends who went through D's, I feel like I know what a judge would order if W doesn't agree to terms. There are no issues with abuse or parenting abilities or finances or anything, it is very straightforward so it should be easy for the judge. We already have a 50/50 custody agreement signed. All that's left are some specifics about certain holidays and school breaks and a few other things like introducing kids to new partners.

High anxiety often leads to behavior that is very destructive to a R - controlling, criticizing, nasty comments, aggression and anger, the list goes on. There is a guy who has a series of 4 or 5 youtube vids discussing an "anxious wife" that are really good. One of them nailed my W and my M perfectly, it was uncanny. I don't think i'm allowed to mention the guy's name here but maybe you can find the vids, they are a pretty good and would probably resonate with you. While I have enjoyed them and they have really helped in doing a post-mortem on my M. Most of us will have to deal with anxiety in a partner from time to time, but I will never EVER get linked up with a high-strung woman again, it is too much of a grind over the long haul.

As for dating all I can say is that I still feel ready but again that has not translated into action yet. I had a conversation with a female friend of mine about how most quality women are probably very wary of a guy who isn't even technically divorced yet. The fact that BD was over a year ago doesn't matter so much. They will have questions in their mind about it being too soon, about lingering feelings, about possible recon, etc. I said to my friend that if she were interested in a guy who had only been physically separated from his W for 4 months and he was still M'd, I would probably tell her to hold off until the D was done. So there's that perspective. I'm not going to overanalyze things though. I'm cool with where i'm at because I know it's going to be game on in the not-to-distant future.
Posted By: AnotherStander Re: Charting My Course - 12/18/19 08:41 PM
Gekko, glad to hear you're taking the court proceedings in stride! That can really tear a person up, so you're really in a healthy place.

Based on my dating experiences before and after D, you are correct, many women will not go near a man who is still married no matter how long they've been separated. I heard quite a few stories about separated men dating while still clearly holding a torch for their W, and many of them ended up ditching the new GF to try and recon.
Posted By: Ready2Change Re: Charting My Course - 12/18/19 09:31 PM

Originally Posted by Gekko
I had a conversation with a female friend of mine about how most quality women are probably very wary of a guy who isn't even technically divorced yet.



After the ink dries, there is still no need to rush into dating. Just keep putting yourself out there doing things you like and woman will be there. Enjoy interacting with every one of them. Let dating happen naturally. Woman will come and go through the process. Quality woman are also very wary if you haven't dated many other woman. I don't believe you will have any problems doing any of this. Enjoy the ride.
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 12/19/19 05:14 AM
Hey Gekko,

Pleasure mate. It could be W's anxiety too that is causing the slow turnaround with the legals? Anyway, good luck again with getting something resolved by consent. If you can avoid Court, all the better. Sounds like your L is referring to what we calling Oz an in Chambers application.

Is the dude on youtube's initials AK?

I never really thought it could be anxiety driving my XW's bossiness, impetuousness, look before you leap attitude, but it seems to be clicking into place. I'm going to explore all this and see what I can do to make things easier by understanding her more. It could be that all her bravado and brashness was really just covering an anxiety issue. I still struggle to connect that logic though, because it seems so counter-intuitive.

Knock em dead with the dating mate!

Cheers, DS
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 01/07/20 12:12 AM
Jumping back on board here and journaling for a minute:

DS9 - yes the guy's initials are AK. He really nails the anxiety thing better than I have seen anywhere else. As for your W, as I recall she was either abused or neglected by her parents? Maybe she developed her domineering personality as a survival trait, vowing not to submit to or rely on anyone else and always calling the shots? Your sitch seems more complicated also due to what I believe is a MLC? Hope you're hanging in there, I will read up when I have a minute.

As for me, a very nice holiday season, split time with the kids but saw them plenty, Santa was very good to all. Multiple holiday parties, some with the kids, lots of time with friends, it was beautiful. Happy to have made it through with no drama, the Xmas tree is down, and now I'm into a psychologically uplifting New Year. Every day of this year is going to have a special moment.

Still no response from W or her L on the settlement agreement. I've done all I can do at the moment. We went to court a few weeks ago and the L's asked to continue things for 60 days and the judge happily agreed. I want things finalized. I believe I will have a feeling of relief when the papers are signed and stamped by the judge. W probably will feel the same, not that I am thinking much about what she is thinking. It does not matter to me. Things are fine between us, we are co-parenting successfully which is all I care about. We're in business together. Zero communication about any subject that does not relate directly to the kids.

I have been out of IHS for 6 months and haven't been on a real date yet. Haven't tried. I felt like I was ready many months ago and have continued to say "in due time" and I think that still holds true. I'm just having thoughts but not much action. I did have a quick kiss at a bar with a long-time friend who is also divorced but that was alcohol-fueled and I have pulled back with her for the time being, although I am interested in her. There is also a girl in my neighborhood who is divorced and has been slowly escalating with me. We'll see. There are many women in my town and the surrounding towns that look great.

I suppose I am still focused on the kids, continuing to get the new house set up, work, friends, gym, travel, group nights out, etc etc. Living my life. I am in a good head space and have been for awhile. I am not at a point yet where I am overly concerned about my own lack of effort in the dating world. In due time, LOL....

Happy New Year everyone! This can be an incredible year of amazing new adventures and accomplishments - make it so!!!
Posted By: DS9 Re: Charting My Course - 01/07/20 01:09 AM
Hey Gekko,

Merry xmas and happy new year mate. Glad to hear the festive season went well for you.

Get your L to check up on her L and set a timeframe for them to respond. Response needs to be well before the Court date just in case there's further discussion needed before finalisation. Good luck - hope it settles!

As to dating, you will cross paths with the right woman at the right time, or, the next 'ultra alpha' woman in your life will approach and seduce you lol!

Yes, my XW was hit by her father and he was very aggressive. Her mother was not abusive but left her and her sister to their own devices, and didn't believe my XW when she told her of abuse by a 3rd party, or when her XH punched her. These are the things she told me. She would choke up, not reveal further, then immediately go back to normal, as if she didnt want to show weakness. She always spoke of 'freedom' and freedom from her parents. Yes, I thought MLC.

Cheers DS
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 01/13/20 06:43 PM
Journaling:

After a nice period of time when texts from the W had slowed down, they have now picked back up again. However, with the passage of time I have become less irritated by them. I typically wait until 2 or 3 of her texts come in before responding to all of them with one quick to-the-point text. All business, all the time.

I have to disclose that I am just not attracted to the STBXW. She is very pretty, I doubt anyone would rank her lower than a 8 of 10, but her personality and all the past BS has turned me off to the point where I am just not feeling anything. This has helped immensely in moving on. Will I ever feel a flicker again? I don't know, maybe, who knows, but right now there is nothing there. I am loving my house and my life without W's constant negativity, critical commentary and controlling behavior, I can tell you that.

I think it was AnotherStander or possibly Ready2Change that said in another thread that in some sitches the LBS has actually checked out of the R too but the WAS just beat them to the BD. Something like that. I think that kind of describes my sitch, where I already had enough of W's BS years ago. I hung on for the kids sake and for mine too, so I would have full access to the kids every day. Then eventually I started to make an effort to turn things around in the MR, but W was done by then and would not participate in the rescue.

I would say my main worry as the D got underway was the kids wanting mommy more, and from time to time that has happened. If we are all out at an event, they sometimes want to go home with W even though they are supposed to be at my house. Sometimes there are tears. Let me tell you that shyt stings really bad. I get that kids have special R's with mom and depending on the circumstances W will take them sometimes. I would say far and away this has been the toughest part of my sitch so far. Thankfully it is not a constant occurrence, maybe an incident once every few months.

I will be seeing some of W's family at an event in a few weeks, I am expecting everything will be cool as I have always got along with them. Not a peep about the D or negative comment about W is coming from me that is for certain. It will be interesting to feel the vibe in the room. I'll have a smile and a genuine "how are things?" for them all.
Posted By: AnotherStander Re: Charting My Course - 01/13/20 09:47 PM
Originally Posted by Gekko
I think it was AnotherStander or possibly Ready2Change that said in another thread that in some sitches the LBS has actually checked out of the R too but the WAS just beat them to the BD. Something like that. I think that kind of describes my sitch, where I already had enough of W's BS years ago. I hung on for the kids sake and for mine too, so I would have full access to the kids every day.


Yeah I do say that fairly regularly. It seems like in most marriages, over time both spouses tend to end up on autopilot. Things start out romantic and loving, but after careers get into full swing and kids come along then you end up spending all your time parenting and adulting and not spending enough time on the relationship. I think most marriages that survive for decades have two spouses that are willing to accept this state, but the M's that end up here typically have one spouse that is OK with the status quo and one that isn't.

Quote
I get that kids have special R's with mom and depending on the circumstances W will take them sometimes. I would say far and away this has been the toughest part of my sitch so far.


Yeah that is a tough thing to go through for sure, and I think a lot of us would go through it regardless of what happened in our M. I had always heard that girls are close to their dads when they are young but their moms when they get older, and it certainly happened to me. It really hurt to see them push away from me, but it's part of growing up. I still have a great relationship with both of them, but for a few years there they didn't want to have much to do with me. Hopefully it will get better for you with time!

Quote
Not a peep about the D or negative comment about W is coming from me that is for certain. It will be interesting to feel the vibe in the room. I'll have a smile and a genuine "how are things?" for them all.


Good, sounds like a great attitude to have going in!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 02/05/20 12:54 AM
Journaling:

On the legal front, my L has been hounding W's L for their position on the settlement agreement, and still nothing. At BD, W said she wanted D finalized in 6 months, and we are nearing the 16 month mark and she is dragging her feet. I've been around this forum long enough to know this is certainly not uncommon. I am weighing my options carefully at this point.

GAL activities continue to be abundant. Life is full and busy but I do have some built-in down time just for me which is important. Based on travels and kids activities and other planned events over the past month, I have not had time to crack into dating as of yet. I am not yet venturing into OLD so any dates will be initiated IRL. I feel like I have been ready for months now but that's just words and thoughts, not action. No worries really, I have never been one to press, but instead have always just lived my life, circulate out and about, and see what the Universe puts in my orbit. I'm okay with where I'm at right at the moment.

I'm as detached as I have ever been with W. It just keeps getting better. We have a lot of years ahead of us because of the two young kids we share. She's a good mom, not one of the ones that was taken over by aliens that I read about here so much, so for that I am fortunate. Always looking for silver linings I guess.

I told a friend last weekend that even if I could, I would not go back and not marry W because I have the kids now and I would never even think of undoing that and not having them. I'm glad I took the course I did because I have the kids as a result. Anything I could have done better in the M, I will do better in my next R. No dwelling on mistakes, just learning and growing and getting better, always getting better.
Posted By: LH19 Re: Charting My Course - 02/05/20 03:12 AM
Gek,

Great update man! I know you think your ready but youíre not for OLD. Get your first hookup out of the way. Youíll have always plenty of time in the future!
Posted By: Gekko Re: Charting My Course - 02/06/20 09:27 PM
Thanks LH, I agree I'm not quite ready for OLD. I'm stuck at the website surfing stage and that's okay for now. IRL I am out and about so we'll see what develops in the brick and mortar world. I am allowing myself to progress naturally and I'm not going to force anything.
Posted By: job Re: Charting My Course - 02/06/20 10:47 PM
New Thread:

Charting My Course (Part 2)
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