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A few things you should know as the LBS

Posted By: Jack_Three_Beans

A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 10:53 AM

Speaking as a former LBS to a MLC spouse.

You will get through this. You will survive. Quite possibly you will be come a better person for this. A better parent, and have better skills in relationships.

There is no logic in your MLC spouse. No logic that will make sense to you. Trying to figure them out is a waste of your time and it [censored] you in.

MLC is a process and a journey they must go through on their own. During this time they will make horrible choices from your perspective and others as well. They will burn bridges and lose the respect of people around them. IT is not your job to prevent this, you cannot.

What you can do is help them rebuild, later if you are around when they come out of it. You can support them, because they will be so fragile and broken. They will not believe that you could forgive them. You might not believe you can either.

Your children are not your support during this process, you do not use them against the MLCer. You do not make them into allies, you protect them, and you are their support. You do your best to kill the vicious cycle and prevent your children from going down the MLC road later on in life and doing this to another person.

You could get through this if only they didn't do this to the children. The children do not become your excuse to be angry at your spouse. You take on the responsibility of a single parent now and you become the best single parent in the world. Shower your kids with love, but, very important you also have the responsibility to raise good people later. Bear that in mind, do not over compensate. Your children will be ok as long as you are.

The OM/OW is a symptom. The numbers of MLCers who have PA are staggering, it means nothing. Do not ever compare yourself to the OM/OW. EVER.

Time.
This takes time.
In the time you will gain the skills needed to keep your balance. And you will want a level ride.
One day the MCLer might say something that gives you great hope and the next take it away when you find out they have plans with the OM/OW for a clothing free weekend at a local BnB.

If they saying that gets your hopes up...be very very wary. Be suspicious and really do not get your hopes up. Because like a roller coaster, these 'highs' almost always are followed by a steep steep and fast decent.

It is your job to make sure the ride you are on is more like a float down a nice clam river and not the Tower of Terror at your amusement park.

In my experience the path back for the MLCer is NOT preceded by something amazingly wonderful like a statement of love, but a whisper of doubt.

You will snoop, do better.

You will make mistakes and go against the advice here. Get up dust yourself off and move forward.

LEARN. If you try something and it doesn't work, don't do that again, anytime soon. It might work later, but it certainly isn't going to work anytime soon.

This, all of this that you are going through?
This MLC, your marriage...it isn't over until YOU say it is.
You have the control in this. You have all the control in this.
Your marriage isn't over until you say it is.

DO not look to far down the road. Just look a few days at a time. In some cases a few hours.

You will change your mind, many times. You will give up you will stand, you will give up. You are allowed to and you will have our support here.

2x4's here have a purpose. They are wake up calls, do not be afraid of them.

You are not a loser or a doormat. You are a person fighting for your marriage in the most unlikely way, by not fighting.

You cannot beat down an MLC, you can outlast it. The MLCer is going to hit you hard and hit you often. You are going to not be there to be hit (distance, not snooping, not trying to figure them out, not confronting about the OM) you are going to dance around and avoid as many hits as you can. And instead of hitting back, you are going to watch them fall when they are done, and if you are still around you are going to help them up and tend to their wounds. You aren't going to fix them, you are NOT the white knight, the princess/prince has to save themselves. But you can be by their side and show them love.

That is how this can end.

In the process, you will learn not to controlling, to stop being a fixer, to learn that while you do not NEED them in your life, you like it if they were.

They will come through this feeling like a monster, you will need to show them that they are not. They might have been, but when they truly come out they will think that forgiveness will be beyond them.
You will need to show them that they are wrong by your actions.

This, all of this is for you, nothing here will fix an MLC...however, everything here can fix you.
Posted By: AndrewP

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 11:18 AM

Thanks Jack. This needs to be put into the required reading. I'm going to read this again and again and again myself.
Posted By: Jack_Three_Beans

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 11:55 AM

I wish I could remember WHO said this in here. A great poster with good advice.

You are the lighthouse in their storm.

Be the lighthouse, for when they want to come home.
Posted By: Cadet

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 12:11 PM

Originally Posted By: Jack_Three_Beans
I wish I could remember WHO said this in here. A great poster with good advice.

You are the lighthouse in their storm.

Be the lighthouse, for when they want to come home.


How about this?

The Lighthouse Story
Posted By: Eagle11

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 12:52 PM

Great post. I am going to look at this often for help. Thanks!
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 01:18 PM

Jack,

An excellent posting. I have made this a "sticky" topic in order to place it at the top of the MLC Forum.
Posted By: Drew

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 01:51 PM

Originally Posted By: Jack_Three_Beans
I wish I could remember WHO said this in here. A great poster with good advice.

You are the lighthouse in their storm.

Be the lighthouse, for when they want to come home.

There was some on it on one of my posts way back in the day.

Along with some Garth Brooks from the movie "Frequency" - When You Come Back to Me Again

Doesn't look like it survived the purge though.
Posted By: ericmsant2

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 08/31/16 07:38 PM

Hey Cadet,

This should be standard reading for newbies.
Posted By: Cadet

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/01/16 05:48 AM

Originally Posted By: ericmsant2
Hey Cadet,

This should be standard reading for newbies.

Added to my post, now I just have to use it. smile
Posted By: btrfly3

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/02/16 10:57 AM

Thank you. I have never posted before and have been reading on these boards for over a year but I felt compelled to tell you how much I needed to read this. I will come back to this many times in the future as I'm on this journey.
Posted By: Esame

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/03/16 04:55 AM

Thank you for this J3B, it's brilliant. I'm going to read it as often as I can.

Cadet thank you for the lighthouse story smile
Posted By: HTM

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/03/16 07:01 AM

A very inspiring post Jack_Three_Beans, and one I believe I'll be coming back to again & again.

All of the things you mention I have wrestled with over the last 7-8mnths and I'm sure I'll continue to do so for some time.

The point you make about how this may affect my children's future relationships & breaking a cycle, also weigh on me. I believe my W is following a path laid down by her father who had at least two As while she still lived at home as a young teen. There is the leading by example too, showing my two Ss how to deal with life's more difficult times; hope I'm up to the task.

I struggle with comparing myself to OM a lot, though I am working to break this unhealthy thinking. Although I don't know this person, I take some solace in that he chose to involve himself with a married woman, taking advantage of my W at a vulnerable time, which IMO exhibits a lack of integrity and true regard for others. Even my IC has pointed out that the OP is not better just different, that's all.

I know I have a lot more work to do on me but posts such as this give me strength, and true hope rather than any offered by my W at present.
Posted By: sgctxok

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/04/16 11:54 AM

Ditto to all these things. It's not just for MLC, everything you said is just general good advice for this board.

Thanks for this, JTB! You might not post often, but when you do, it's quote-worthy!
Posted By: Bee29

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/04/16 01:11 PM

Thank you Jack! I'd love to print this out & stick it to my fridge so I could read it every time I feel down. Unfortunately it's not an option since my h comes to the house...
Posted By: Brubeck

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/10/16 10:50 AM

Thank you once again for your wisdom, J3B. I need to hear every word of this. I save DB posts like this onto my Google drive and read them on tough days. Bless you.
Posted By: bttrfly

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/18/16 12:57 PM

thanks Jack. Just re-read this. Much needed, and much appreciated. xo
Posted By: Legolas

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/18/16 02:37 PM

That was a helpful post. Similar situation to mine. Thank you!
Posted By: Legolas

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/18/16 02:43 PM

Thanks, Jack. Very very helpful! Love the CS Lewis quote too.
Posted By: Legolas

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/18/16 05:10 PM

Hi everyone - thanks for those who replied. How do I get my S to see the positive changes I am making while still "going dark"? We are 600 miles apart and don't even talk much.
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/19/16 05:57 AM

Legolas,

Welcome to the land of MLC! I see you are a newbie and are posting over on Newcomers. Why not start a thread here in MLC? That way people will begin posting to you and then you'll have a thread to refer back to as you travel your Life's path?
Posted By: Legolas

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/22/16 11:02 AM

Thank you, Job. I was feeling a bit stranded. Thank you.

My name is Mark. I believe my wife has shown all the classic signs of a MLC. She is definitely a WAW anyway. She lied and said she was "right behind me" when I left Atlanta for Dallas for a job promotion. She is now living with her mother. Suspect a second affair (first was three years ago). Been trying to do the LRT since August but not much has happened. Made the Merlot and email mistake last night - sent her a YouTube video of Haelstrom's "Break In" as a way to remind her how hurting I am and the walls she has built around herself. It's shocking how different she is right now than the girl I married 23 years ago. Makes me mad that I did that. Of course, no response. Had been faithful on the LRT from Aug 12 of this year. I have read both of MWD's books and Sandi's rules. All of which are fantastic. Anyway, would love to hear from any of you.
Posted By: cheesyt

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/22/16 11:05 AM

does this apply to the LBS for WW's?

or only to MLC?

-cheesy
Posted By: Legolas

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/22/16 11:11 AM

Does what apply? Not sure I understand the question. Sorry!
Posted By: Legolas

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/22/16 12:06 PM

I have a question: when my MLC wife sends me cute pictures and memes once or twice a week my first impulse is WTH!?! I am dying and she knows it. So, I think "I don't want an email or G+ buddy I want you to get serious about our marriage!" But, in order to not lose touch or not be friends, I send her something back -even if its just "Aww cute" - Am I defeating the purpose of the LRT here? Some one please help!
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/22/16 12:10 PM

Legolas,

I suggested to you several days ago that you might want to start a thread over here. You would get more responses in doing so.

This particular thread focuses on the LBS. Why not take your recent posting and start a thread of your own? You can then link up your thread over on Newcomers to the new one here. If you need some assistance in the linking and/or creating of a thread here, please let me know and I'll assist you.
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/22/16 12:16 PM

cheesyt,

If you are referring to Jack's posting about the LBS, yes, his advice can be applied to the LBS for WWs as well. We advise that you practice the same DB skills to the WWs just as we do the MLCers.
Posted By: Legolas

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/23/16 07:26 AM

Thanks Job - I guess I do need some help navigating this! Never used forums like this before. Any help is greatly appreciated.
Posted By: cheesyt

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/23/16 09:54 AM

Job- thank you for the clarification! I will for sure read and try to remember this.
Posted By: Reltub

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/25/16 05:19 PM

Can someone please repost happy agains / finally frees thread
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/26/16 04:34 AM

Reltub,

You can do a search for Happy Again's threads. Here are some instructions to assist you.

1. You can go to the top of this forum, click the Search Button and type in Happy Again and then click.

2. You can go to the left hand bottom of the screen and change the Display Option to "from all dates" and then click change. You will then have access to 438 threads that go back to approximately 2006. I think this will be your best option.

If you can't locate his thread, I'll be happy to locate the last one for you later today.
Posted By: Cadet

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/26/16 05:22 AM

I don't think "happy again" has any posts here anymore.

Either the name was changed or the posts have been purged.

I found one user with that name that had zero posts.

I remember reading the thread years ago but I think the last purge did away with it.
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/26/16 05:29 AM

I'm still looking, but here's a thread that combined many of Happy's old postings:

Happy Again's old posts
Posted By: CaliGuy

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 09/30/16 03:08 PM

Great Post Jack ... Every single word of it
Posted By: Hopful

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 10/18/16 08:50 PM

I just read this and I NEEDED to read this right now. I do have a question. You say the M isn't over until YOU say it's over. What if your spouse says it's over and the the courts say it's over? I really don't feel that I'm in control of anything in my M right now.
Posted By: Hopful

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 10/18/16 09:01 PM

I'm right there with you. I find myself comparing me to OM. Really there's no comparison. He's trash. Sure he knows just what to say to get what he's after but that doesn't change what he is. And like you, anyone who would take advantage of a married woman in a delicate emotional state shows he has no integrity. Try to show your kids a good example of how a "real man" is supposed to act.
Posted By: SBJ

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 10/21/16 09:28 AM

I'm in a similar boat, Hopful...I'm not for sure about PA with OM, but I am sure of an EA that lasted for about 3 months (April-July)...I think it's over, but who knows. My W says she wants out of our M and has already spoken to an attorney and filled out paperwork. She told me so that I'd be prepared when the papers arrived. I'm pretty broken about it.

I guess we can only hold out for as long as we can stand. The spouse wanting out is going to do what they want to do. I'm just trying to get myself to a good place in my own head. If she wants me at some point then it will be my decision.
Posted By: Babe

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 11/16/16 12:24 AM

I like to thank you all for your selflessly sharing of the MLC knowledge and your wisdom !!
Posted By: strdays

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 04/23/17 02:42 PM

I read this post every time I am about to see my WW to pick up my kids or other unavoidable things. It reminds me how to act with her.
Posted By: SJW

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 06/20/17 12:31 AM

Thank you for this it makes so much sense to my situation. I've been trawling through posts about MLC and found a link for the 6 stages but it didn't work can anyone tell me what the 6 stages are?
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 06/24/17 09:45 AM

I'm sorry...I just saw your posting. Please keep in mind that the stages are not linear and they can bounce back and forth in them until they hit acceptance and there is no set time limit on the stages. They are very similar to the stages of grief.

The stages are: denial, anger replay, depression, withdrawal and acceptance.

The best thing to do is keep the focus on you and your family and leave your spouse and/or companion to do his/her thing. If your spouse is in MLC, it will take a long time for him/her to get thru it...some don't make it. This is a marathon, not a sprint.
Posted By: Hunny

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 12/03/17 10:44 AM

All good information. I started honestly thinking I could "fix" this. I really did and I tried but of course you know how that went.
Posted By: WWHWU

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 01/19/18 02:42 AM

Hello All,

I am a newbie posting, here, but have read these posts for several months. I greatly appreciate all the wonderful advice I've seen thus far. I'm in this particular thread because I am now a LBS (I'm assuming that means Left Behind Spouse?)
from a H in MLC.

Sometimes I get confused about what my situation really is. My H, who I believe is in MLC, has also been an alcoholic for the majority of our 18 years together. (He only sobered for 4 years whilst our daughter was very young.)

When I met him, 20 years ago, and we forged a friendship, he was sober. However, then he worked abroad for a few years and came back as a drinker. Yet, I had already formed the bond, and our relationship turned into more at that point. Reason: I was told a story about the drinking, and that it really wasn't a problem. The reason he had gone to AA in the past was for drug reasons from his youth which he would never allow into his life again.

Anyway, many years have passed, and much arguing about the drinking, but I still felt a love connection all that time. He still apologised and tried to pursue.

Well, he turned 49 nine months ago, and he announced that he felt numb for me and couldn't see us growing old together. That's when it became apparent that he was going into MLC. I took it as a cry for help. I agreed to go to counselling for the things he thought I had: OCD, Anger Management Issues.

He also went to some counselling sessions (which he now sais that the therapist told him to move on), but was also simultaneously forging an emotional connection with a female work colleague. (I now know.) Too, the drinking continued, and escalated at times, and his willingness to connect got less and less. It was as if he couldn't even stand to come home to have dinner with us.

We tried to make it work, or at least I did, but he's now moved out to a flat far away. Said I was too controlling.

He's said so many things in the past months that just sound so bizarre. He's never been the "most" responsible person when it came to the majority of our home life (Great worker and very responsible there!), but I truly had thought that he took pride in being a fairly good husband, father and provider. It's as if none of that matters any more. He told me very recently that he's Impetuous and that doesn't work with someone like me who needs stability. Which follows suit with the other things he's been saying like, "We've just grown apart." But he's also said, in the last month, that he never really loved me, never really let me in, etc.

I haven't seen too many posts from people who have MLC H who are also highly functioning alcoholics, so part of me is wondering if our Crisis is one where the alcoholic is just finally ready to stop trying to make it work with the non-alcoholic or what. (It seemed to get worse after his last binge 3 months ago, when I told him I wouldn't be drinking with him anymore. That's when plans to separate escalated.)

Does any of this resonate with any of you?

WWHWU = When will he wake up
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 01/19/18 06:52 AM

WWHWU,

Welcome! Please start a thread of your own so that people can have the opportunity to post directly to you on your thread. By creating your own thread, it will not only help you keep track of your progress, but also it will allow us to post directly to you and follow you and your progress, i.e., your journal of sorts.


Posted By: Candace

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 01/28/18 02:30 PM

Well Said. its a roller coaster.
Posted By: schak

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 04/25/18 06:09 AM

I am a newbie, and I just read this. I think I will need to read it often. Thank you!
Posted By: Jlh

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 05/15/18 12:54 PM

I needed to read this tonight. Thank you. smile
Posted By: Liam51

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 02/01/19 02:44 PM

I have almost an identicle situation with one exception "My W is an MLC'r but there is no OM! - verified 100%"

That said, would your advice to my handling of this situation be any different?

M = 51
W = 47
M = 05/2001
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 02/01/19 05:20 PM

Liam,

Jack passed away a couple of years ago. I would suggest that you start a thread of your own on this forum and allow others to post to you and provide advice and friendship.
Posted By: Mango

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 02/10/19 01:22 PM

Thank you for this! Love how you explain it all, especially regarding the kids, I just want to be the best mum I can be and hopefully my husband comes out of his midlife crisis soon.
Posted By: Mango

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 04/13/19 12:21 PM

Hi did your husband come home to his family ?
Posted By: job

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 04/13/19 01:19 PM

Mango,

Who are you addressing your question to? Jack passed away and this thread is now used as a reference for others to read. We ask that anyone who posts here who is new, to please start a thread so that the posters can respond directly to the new poster.
Posted By: Annalou

Re: A few things you should know as the LBS - 03/27/20 03:48 PM

This is wonderful... just what I needed to read as I begin my journey as a LBS. Thank you so much 🤞
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