Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?"

Posted By: BarbH

Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?" - 08/18/19 03:09 AM

Old thread (part 1)


Spoke with brother-in-law today (H is staying at their place). I still keep getting the "he's confused" story. apparently on his birthday yesterday, he said "he missed me on his birthday". He's also randomly bursting into tears. BIL also said that he never, ever says anything negative about me-even when reviewing the financial situation. Told BIL he "shouldn't have bought that mountain bike". However, even BIL agrees it will take months for him to sort this out, if ever. EA is over, according to BIL, which I sensed a couple of weeks ago.

I guess I'm standing. At least for now. I told BIL I would be kind, and I will try-that "loving detachment" that sounds so good, and is so hard.

However, on the way home, I began thinking about boundaries. I don't know if H is still planning on coming home on his days off, he hasn't said lately. His next set of 4 days off starts Monday. He's living out of a suitcase right now, so I imagine at some point he will come home, as his initial plan was to come home on days off to "do chores". I need to think about this, and what my cutoff point will be to ask him to leave again.

I'm also curious as to once we sort out the finances, and each of our monthly expenses drops by $1000....will he actually move out/get his own place at that point? And how will I handle that. I need to start emotionally prepping for that one.

I can't believe I'm actually encouraged by small things-I texted H that the bank visit today went well, and that I was emailing him copies of the paperwork. No answer for a few hours-then I got "Thank you, it's been a busy day". I just said "You're welcome" Holy moly, I actually got an explanation as to the delay. 2 thank yous in 2 days. This is a step up from "C U later" of a few weeks ago. Talk about over-analysis.

I'm finding this whole experience to be just bizarre.

Not back to work until Thursday. Plans: Sunday-workout, regular sunday am walk with friends, yardwork. Monday: workout, organize 2nd guest room (packing up his stuff so if I have guests, they have somewhere to sleep). Farrier coming for horses. Tuesday: workout, Town, visit dad, dinner with friends from out of town. Wednesday: workout, Hmmm....kayaking? Dog hike? I'll find something.

Thank you all again.
Posted By: Grace21

Re: Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?" - 08/18/19 11:12 PM

Originally Posted by BarbH
I can't believe I'm actually encouraged by small things-I texted H that the bank visit today went well, and that I was emailing him copies of the paperwork. No answer for a few hours-then I got "Thank you, it's been a busy day". I just said "You're welcome" Holy moly, I actually got an explanation as to the delay. 2 thank yous in 2 days. This is a step up. Talk about over-analysis.

Barb - we all do this. I was still doing it until H stopped contacting me. I'm going on 11 months now. It's part of the process of letting go. We hold on to hope, trying to grab that life-line, until we realize that's not our life-line after all. Hang in there. I like that you have plans for several days.

Once your H is out of the house in his own place, you will have to consider boundaries. I let my H come and go as he pleased, which was only on the weekend to do the lawn or pick something up, but now I've decided to not allow that. Iím now a bit sorry I let it go on so long. I think it might get ugly. He won't return my messages, so he will just find the house locked tight from now on, and have to contact me to get in. After what he pulled with the finances, he doesn't deserve anything from me really. I am, however, going to get advice from my attorney on this matter.

I hope you connect with your therapist. I would just advise to think about your purpose to the therapy. I use mine from time to time knowing itís more just me having a safe place to talk. She keeps telling me Iím doing really well, and I am, but itís nice to connect and regroup with her once in a while.

Posted By: BarbH

Re: Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?" - 08/19/19 12:41 AM

Thanks Grace. I know I'm over analyzing everything. I'm sitting here convincing myself to rope drop. Seriously, how hard should that be considering he never talks to me anymore? Just money/business texts back and forth.

I had awesome plans, today I managed to walk, mow the lawn, still convincing myself to work out-I'm having a seriously downer day, sitting up here on the farm, wondering what the h*** is going on.

I can't lock him out, as he's joint owner so legally can come and go. That was originally his plan "4 days at sister's while working, then home for 4 days to do chores". Until last week he was actually letting me know what he was doing, but nothing now, so if he shows up its a surprise. I have a couple of friends up here that I can go to for visit if he comes. If he's civil, fine, but if not, I'll need to ask him to leave. (had to do that 2 weeks ago, hasn't been back except to dogsit while I went away).

What do I make of the things BIL is telling me? That he "misses me" and he's bursting into random tears? Clearly, not missing me enough, or sad enough, or whatever enough. He told me 2 weeks ago that "he had to hit rock bottom" whatever that means. It's 2 months since BD#2, apparently (according to him) 15 years since our marriage ended. It's horrible to think that someone I loved (and still do) and that I thought loved me, I think is now actually indifferent to me.

So I'm resolving to LRT/DB as best I can, but I'm feeling it's academic at this point, as we have so little contact. The emotional detachment is the hardest part-I think I'll talk to my therapist about that.

I read about what yours did with the finances, just when you think you've seen it all, right? It's awful, when you think things are a little positive, and then the rug gets pulled out again.

Posted By: BarbH

Re: question re text messages - 08/20/19 10:25 AM

So I've a question re text messages. We don't have a lot to talk about other than financial or house issues...And the separation agreement that he's yet to discuss. Scrolling back through my texts with him i realize I'm very chatty,asking questions and volunteering information, with really nothing coming back.

I'll write a chapter and get back 3 words...... "Thanks c u later" responses. So today I get a text "r u at work". I say "no, at home, farrier coming up at 3" usually i would follow this up with "why, what's up?", Or some other conversational comment. I had no response back. I think he wants to come up when I'm not here. I''m thinking of communicating at his level. I anticipate the same question tomorrow. Is it reasonable to just say "nope"? Cut down on any elaboration? Even though I'm going out tomorrow? I've committed to texting/emailing once a week with bills due for the next 2 weeks so I'll stick to that, one "business email or text a week unless it's an emergency. Otherwise only contact will be responding to messages from him.

He's the one who wanted "space", after all.
Posted By: job

Re: question re text messages - 08/20/19 12:48 PM

I wouldn't be so forthcoming when communicating w/him. If he asks a question answer w/short, but sweet answers. If he asks if you are at work, just say no and leave it at that. At this time, you do not need to tell him everything that is going on in your life...i.e., he certainly isn't tell you about his. So, bottom line, don't share too much w/him. He needs to realize that he fired you as his wife and that things are slowly changing in the way of communicating and the relationship is definitely going to change if a divorce comes to be.
Posted By: peacetoday

Re: question re text messages - 08/20/19 02:07 PM

I think that is a good plan

less involvement, less chat

detach and spend more energy on moving forward

keep your attention on the bills and make sure he does his part
Posted By: BarbH

Re: question re text messages - 08/20/19 04:02 PM

Thanks guys for confirming what I was thinking, re the texting/communication.

I have to say, support comes from surprising places-My farrier was up (I've know him for 20 yrs). We were talking and he revealed he had split from wife #2 for over a year. He ended up in counselling, then marriage counselling and now they are 'back stronger than ever" in his words. He was pretty blunt about what he's seen over the past year or so in my relationship with H-he even said the last few times he was up talking to me, when he left he was thinking "what is she doing with him?" He totally reinforced everything you folks are saying-GAL/PMA/leave him alone, he has to do the work. He also said (and I love him for this), that if I have to euthanize my old horses, he will help me with that-either by being here or taking them to his acreage. My gosh, people are wonderful, and I find I have more support than I think I do sometimes.

So today-house appraisal, then into town for dinner with friends visiting from out of town. I've cleaned out the "den" (packed up all H's radio equipment and stuffed it in a closet) to make a guest room so I can have company! Tomorrow: hmmm probably boring stuff-mowing lawns etc.

But, thinking ahead to winter-which are long/dark and not much to do in the boonies-I realized our town has a "volunteer" page-so I've been looking at various volunteer opportunities. There's more than one that looks interesting! I don't know if everywhere has this kind of volunteer hub-but seriously, there's another GAL opportunity.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think I did okay! - 08/21/19 03:49 AM

So H texted he wanted to come up tomorrow to pick some items up with BIL (brother-in-law) to take to the other property (the ranch). He also said we should talk about the mortgage situation. I said that would be fine, he asked what I thought, I said I thought that since the consumer debt had to be dealt with anyway, we should look at the refinance as the monthly bill would help both our cash flow.

Then he said he wanted to take the truck and RV up to the ranch. As far as I'm concerned, the truck/RV/Boat/Suzuki are the 4 main vehicle assets under discussion. I said "until we've sorted out ownership, I think all assets should stay here". He said "I thought you said you were okay with it". I said "I understand that is what I said, but I've reconsidered. I think we need to discuss it". He got a little cranky, but I was calm! I said "truck needs tires, has an oil leak, if it's going to end up being mine, I don't want it going anywhere". So he asked if we would split the repairs, I said no. We need to discuss ownership.

Then the dog-she's due for repeat x-rays on a tooth she damaged. We will also discuss who is taking her to the vets' (specialist-3 hrs drive). He wants to take her to his sister's, and I'm okay with that as the separation agreement states "joint ownership until we decide differently".

When discussing the vehicles, I did get to say "H, you are the one who decided to step out of the marriage, and as part of that we need to decide who actually owns what".

He got cranky, I stayed calm! I've very proud of myself! Hope I can do the same tomorrow. I even validated a couple of things he said! I didn't cry, or waver!

I'll even make iced tea so i can offer BIL (and H) a glass while we're discussing whatever we're going to discuss tomorrow, and even though I'll be fixing fencing, I will still look fabulous! I can really rock a wide brimmed sunhat.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think I did okay! - 08/21/19 04:10 AM

My signature isn't showing up.

Quick recap. Me 57, H 60 (3 days ago). no children. Hobby farm, horses, dog, cats.

H: Morbidly afraid of dying-mother died when he was 23, father when he was 28, bff at 51, I was dx with breast cancer when he was 54.

M: Br ca at 50, mother with severe dementia-passed June 8,2019, father with mod. dementia still living alone at home, 1 hr from us. Working ++OT due to debt load after off work x 1 yr.

Anyway, H emotionally checks out of our marriage about 2 yrs ago. wants to retire-finances won't quite allow. I go to planner and say "here's how you can retire, but I want us to be happy (and we haven't for a couple of years) so we need help (this is not the first time I've suggested counselling). DB #1 June 4. "We're beyond talking". Mother passes June 8. I discover FB messages between H and "workfriend" he's flirting with. Also various messages between him and friends re: "POF/the gym is a "target rich environment". and various other grade 10 type sniggering comments.

He's absent during the 3 days I'm with my mother. June 14-he comes home "he loves me forever, it's always me, he'll do whatever it takes". June 19=1 hr before MC "theres no spark, we're done" BD#2

Since then: I think this is full blown MLC. He's living with sister, originally wanted to spend 4 nights there (while at work), then 4 at home to do chores. Tears, pursuing from me. Tears from him. "I don't want to hurt you" "I"m so confused" "i need space" etc. "you work too much" "the house isn't clean enough (!)". EA is over. He's at the gym, running and has bought a mountain bike (which he 3 weeks later told BIL he shouldn't have). Told me "our marriage ended 15 years ago" but wants me to stay on the farm for a year. (I'm okay with this, as renos/painting/purging needs doing, plus horses and other animals to deal with) He'll get me firewood etc (hence use of RV). His family says "they don't know who he is, he's changed so much". All previous interests have gone by the wayside. I think he hates me, family says he doesn't. I still hear "he's confused" and "give him space". Seriously, he's a hot mess.

I'm GALing/PMA'ing/ and finally starting to draw some lines in the sand. (see the previous post!).

OH and sorry, previous post-I was in town having dinner. I got home-he phoned and that was the conversation....I wasn't too clear.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Dare I send this? - 08/21/19 10:44 PM

So H and BIL were up-idle chit chat on back deck talking about this and that. It's bizarre, it's like he thinks we are best buds, talking about coming up again and doing chores, looking at the truck oil leak, concerts we went to last year, vacations from last year. They go off up to the ranch.

On their way back, H stops in again to pick up his kayak. (My brain starts going "who's he kayaking with" but it's none of my business and I need to leave it alone) I ignore this until he comes in and asks "where's my life jacket" Ummm hanging up where it always is. Then he asks for the PIN for the joint online line of credit-which only has a few hundred in it right now. He has the account #. I lose it, as I'm already edgy. I say I'm not giving you my pin. You have the account #, be an adult and set up your own login. He gets p!ssy and leaves with BIL.

I want to say "It's incredibly annoying to me that you walk away from our marriage and still have the expectation that I will take care of things. Where's my life jacket so I can go kayaking with my new buddies/ What's the pin # when you have all the info to set up your own. Yes, this is a trigger for me. I don't mind taking care of details if and when we are together providing you take an interest in what we are doing but honestly, you asked for space, and we are not together, and you know how I feel about that. I feel part of that space is that you should be figuring your s*** out, not me providing the easy answers"

I probably shouldn't send that.
Posted By: peacetoday

Re: Dare I send this? - 08/22/19 01:29 PM

I think you did good


Let him figure things out and you can spend your time taking care of you
I would watch the account and be careful with money

they will spend funds that are not available, overspend, go in debt ect...
even if they were once good with money
everything changes in MLC
Posted By: BarbH

What a good day! - 08/28/19 12:36 AM


Finally got into my new counsellor-and I think she's going to help me out a lot. We've already touched on the majority of my issues-and have places to start some work. Namely: my propensity to withhold love/affection when I don't feel it's been "earned" (and identified that even though I have no doubt my father loves me, he's never used those words-the best he's said is he "likes my sister and I a lot"). My issues around planning, needing to organize (I'm not going to say control) things vs becoming "softer"...yes. My difficulties asking for what I need in a relationship. Also yes. Work to do! She's also very familiar with Michele's work and this board-and is actively encouraging me to stay on it-says it's a valuable resource and can be very helpful!

Re;H. Well, even my therapist agrees "he's confused" as she put-"he told you that". Yes, yes he did. I phoned him today (he answers my calls right away) to discuss moving closing the mortgage/refinance date so I can go on a sudden vacation to visit a friend. No problem, he's happy to do it. Also coming up to our place tomorrow to do some work-fencing/tree removal/and fix my oil leak on my truck that I can't handle. He's also going to stay with the animals while I travel (2 trips planned).

Here's what I'm finding odd-When he was up last week, my BIL asked if I was doing vacation-I said (quietly as I'm trying to be mysterious) that I may be going to Nova Scotia. So today, H says "so you're going to see your friend". Um, didn't think he heard anything I ever said. The other oddity is this: He has a amateur radio tracker in his car (it beacons, and can be seen on internet). He turned it on a week ago, and has it running all the time. When he first left, it was off for 2 months. I've scanned back, and really all he does is go to work, then home to sister's, once to a coffee shop, and once kayaking-with another ham radio friend as I saw his tracker too. In the back of my mind, I'm wondering if this is him trying to show me he's not seeing OW/Workfriend? I know that EA is over, and I'm pretty sure there's no one else. I can't think who else he thinks might be watching his tracker!

Am I overthinking this?

Anyway, I'm in a pretty happy place today. New therapist, major trip to a place I've never been, visiting a friend I haven't seen for a year-but who has been a major support-we message every day. Finances getting cleared up, and H being pleasant. WOW.
Posted By: job

Re: What a good day! - 08/28/19 12:42 PM

I'm glad you hit it off w/your new counselor. That's a first step and hopefully w/her assistance you can find a way to figure things out and how to go about making the changes you recognize, wan/t and/or need.

Try not to over analyze what your h is doing. As for the tracker, I do think he, in his own way, is trying to show you what he does w/his time. I wouldn't point out to him that his tracker has been flipped on because then he would know you are watching him once in a while.

Your trip is coming at a good time and you will enjoy the time away and also visiting w/a friend.

Looks like everything is starting to fall in place.
Posted By: peacetoday

Re: What a good day! - 08/28/19 02:09 PM

its hard to not overtthink all that MLC brings
much of it is guess work

also we tend to try to figure out which direction the MLCer will go
like what is he thinking and sooo many mixed messages along the way

some of them hook us I think because they are also in limbo
and unsure of their next move

Im glad you found a therapist...That is awesome and Im sure you will begin a lot of forward movement working on your issues and past
sometimes it takes a crises to make us move also
Posted By: BarbH

Re: What a good day! - 08/28/19 03:56 PM

Thanks to you both. I'm working hard on detachment. Hopefully I can manage to not be triggered when he comes up. He made a point of telling me "he was going to take the dog and/or stay overnight, but now he's made plans to go to the range". I will not let my mind ask "with who"

I have the elastic band on the wrist, as a visual. If I feel I'm being triggered-3 deep breaths, and if still triggered, walk away. That's the plan!

Even though the messages are mixed, the feeling I'm still getting is he's gone. I think the helpful things he is doing is because of guilt. But again, I shouldn't try to read minds, correct?

Going kayaking later with friends-will make sure kayaks are out and in truck before he gets here! And then, maybe I can leave earlier-before he does.

Originally Posted by peacetoday
its hard to not overtthink all that MLC brings
much of it is guess work

some of them hook us I think because they are also in limbo
and unsure of their next move

Oh yes, I think he is in limbo. At some point, I need to figure out how to say the door is open....because one of his issues is that once he "makes a decision" he's too stubborn and/or proud to admit he's changed his mind. I'm worried that even if he feels doubt, he will stick with his original decision just out of pride or embarrassment. Which is a shame.

Once I get back from Nova Scotia, we'll finish the refinance. That increases his cash flow significantly. So...will he move out? Interesting. He's got it good right now at his sister's, so really not feeling the effects of any of this (other than he "missed me on his birthday"). Looks like he's cake eating at both places!
Posted By: DejaVu6

Re: What a good day! - 08/28/19 04:09 PM

Barb...sounds like things are going pretty well. As others have said, I wouldnít spend too much time analyzing what he is doing or wondering about mixed messages. My XH has been extremely cooperative and friendly and helpful through most of our sitch...I am certain it is just guilt and helping me is his way of trying to alleviate some of that. Remember what is often said on here... if he is coming back, you will know it. If he isnít, you will just be confused. If he wants to R, he will make that pretty clear and shame and pride wonít stop him if he is serious. Just keep working on you and doing what makes sense for you. Hope you have a fantastic time in Nova Scotia. I have never made it to that end of Canada (I live on Vancouver Island) but I hear it is beautiful. (((HUGS)))
Posted By: BarbH

Re: What a good day! - 08/28/19 08:08 PM

Hi DejaVu6:
another BC'er! I'm in the interior. NS has always been on my bucket list, in fact a cross country by train trip ending at NS has been high on the list. Finally the stars are aligning....girlfriend is there, not going on vacation with H, and have some money! Away I go.

So he was up this morning, fixed the things he said he was going to fix. I was pleasant, even kind of happy-when I'm happy I hum or whistle, and there i was, humming and whistling away. He was kind of terse when he first came up, then relaxed and talked for about an hr on back deck, about finances, house renos etc. He looks stressed, I'm feeling great! He started talking the sep. agreement and buying each other out-which neither of us can afford to do. i said something about the divorce/separation and then said "but you know how I feel about that-I should write it on a 2x4 and hit you with it!" We actually laughed about it. He made comments about "even if we do get back together, the farm is just too much". and I said "yes, and a house shouldn't break up a marriage-it can always be sold". We actually talked about the animals, moving to town, I stopped the conversation by saying "wait, you wanted 6 months before we talked about things so..."
He keeps bringing up the house/farm. It feels like it was the "OW". Except now that he's not here, I'm finding it pretty easy to keep going. With H not really contributing in the past couple of years-I can feel what an anchor he'd actually become. I'm rapidly developing a list in my head of what needs to happen for potential reconciliation.

Then he said "you should take the train back from NS" and discussed where and what I would be doing there. The Citadel/wineries/beaches/Peggy's Cove. He sounds kind of jealous actually.

I do think the possibility of a reconcile is on his mind. His approach has always been oblique ie: "how does a guy know if he should ask a girl to marry him"...if I may quote. So I take sideways conversations as a bit of a feeler.

Not getting hopes up at all. Continuing to GAL. I think I'm DB'ing like a madman!
Posted By: BarbH

Re: What a good day! - 08/29/19 05:12 AM

Well, after such a great day, here I am feeling very anxious. Why? because of that stupid tracker-apparently he's down at a local park and has been for 1.5 hrs. In the dark, but there is a lighted parking area. I know he runs/cycles, but really it's 10PM. If he was with someone, would he be at the park? Who knows. I don't know ,right? It changes nothing right? If the tracker still shows him there after 11 pm, I know it was just turned off...it gets bumped and turns itself off.(or he does it deliberately) I need to stop looking at the plotter.

Except...I was just pondering this-if there is no OW, (and according to his family, there isn't, but I expect there will be one day, and I am never going to ask him unless he talks about wanting to reconcile) does it change my approach from more dim/LRT'ish to something a little warmer? Start conversations? I think until I know what is going on, I need to stay dim, correct?

And here I was earlier thinking "well, that conversation went well"....Aaargghhh just when i think I get it together, I spin. so much for DB'ing like a madman! At least I haven't driven down to the park to see who is there-2 months ago, I would have.

Now he's moving. What the heck. His old EA was working today until 7PM. (she works an opposite schedule as the boss broke them up). I hate this. I really do just want to hit him with a 2x4 and say "wake up"!

thanks for listening guys, I need to vent that anxiety. But if there is no other woman, and it's me vs. whatever fantasy he has, should I be warming up a bit? I'm friendly now with conversation, I try to keep text short, sweet and only about house or financial issues.
Posted By: DejaVu6

Re: What a good day! - 08/29/19 05:46 AM

(((Barb))). I remember those anxious nights. They s*ck. First off...I would stop looking at that tracker if I were you. Honestly...unless you are using it to investigate the OW possibility, I would absolutely turn it off and forget it exists. It does nothing except cause you to spin and imagine worst case scenarios.

My two cents on the possibility of an OW. I would assume there is one as there usually is. Men donít tend to leave their homes unless they have somewhere to go or someone to go to. My XH swore up and down on our childrenís lives that there was no OW and I asked him MANY times. He told his mom the same thing...numerous times. He was lying. Like most of these guys, they want to do the crime but donít want to do the time. They know it is wrong and that others would judge them for it so they lie...to EVERYONE. If there is someone else, you will find out eventually anyway. They can only hide things for so long.

Others may think differently but IMO your approach doesnít change. The things you are doing are for you, not him. Detaching, GAL, 180s... are for you so you can emerge from this okay regardless of the outcome. Treat him like you would a neighbour. Be polite and friendly but not over the top. Be as busy as you can be. The friendly neighbour approach will feel forced at first but eventually it will come more naturally to you. (((HUGS)))
Posted By: BarbH

Re: What a good day! - 08/29/19 04:32 PM

Thanks DV!

Yes, I need to not look at the tracker. Since it's been off for over 2 months (since DB), but on again for the past week and not really showing him doing much-I did wonder if it was a way to show me what he was/or wasn't doing. But you're right, I can't read his mind, so off it goes. And really, now that he's not with me, he doesn't need to meet people clandestinely in parks. He can go to their house!

Re: OW. This is part of what I find strange. short recap-he emotionally checked out of marriage 2 years ago. We'd (well, me) had been having a horribly stressful 5-6 years what with cancer/mother with severe dementia/dad with mild dementia/bills/working overtime thanks to said bills etc. I found out after DB that he'd been messaging a "workfriend" and going for drinks and to the range with her. He was flirting on his messages, she wasn't really responding. She has a boyfriend. I think he had this fantasy that if he dumped me, he could hook up with her. This is a small town, H is with his sister and BiL and they both swear up and down that the affair is over. And that he doesn't have anyone else, but that he is "confused" and "thinking things over". He swears she "was just a friend and it got crazy and it's over". Sure. Baloney. I think he got crazy.

According to all his family-he goes to work, goes to the gym, goes biking and comes home. In the past couple of weeks with the tracker-that really does look like all that is happening. But who knows really. I'm steeling myself for a PA as I'm sure he's out there shopping around (although again, family says he went out one night to the bar, came home and said "that was boring"). He's 60.

And you're right, no OW, or there is OW, my approach should be the same. Even though he says things like "even if we reconcile the farm is too much" he also said "neither one of us can buy the other out" so he's all over the map. I was wondering what to do about those small openings..really though, I need just validate what he's saying (and I'm pretty bad at validation right now). Thinking back on yesterday, I let some chances slip by.

I think what really, really is getting me is that he's living the life-he's gal'ing better than I am! No responsibilities to our property up here,and probably few at his sister's. Doesn't have to shop/cook/clean can just do what he wants. In the meantime, I'm up here paying bills, prepping the house and property for sale, rebuilding the demolished bathroom (and he won't even commit to doing the plumbing!) and taking care of everything. That's not GAL, but it is galling! (I live for the bad pun) It's a lot like our marriage was, actually.

So he's off being 18, and I'm the adult. How is he even supposed to begin missing me under those circumstances? Back I go to LRT.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: What a good day! - 08/29/19 04:59 PM

Hey DV6! I just read most of your threads-holy cow, that whole story about shingles is just too much. It's crazy isn't it, how we just believe everything they say, until suddenly the scales fall from your eyes.

Sometimes I think my H thinks he's on some kind of 6 month hall pass (he originally said "in 6 months he'd tell me if we were reconciling or not!) and that I'm still here keeping the home fires burning. Even though he's been such an a** (his messages to his "friends" while my mother was dying were unbelievable and cruel) I would still work towards a new marriage. However, I don't think he would ever commit to the work necessary to do so.

Thanks again for the advice and support. It really helps to be able to "talk" on this board. My friends are great-but they aren't around at midnight! Plus everyone here understands-that even though the marriage is off the rails, it's still possible to love someone and have some hope. I've never felt judgement on anyone's threads here about their stand (or decision not to stand), which I have had from some friends familiar with my situation.
Posted By: BarbH

New developments-holy cow. Re:OW - 08/30/19 01:54 AM

Well, what a day. first off-the tracker in the park last night was H at BiL's soccer game.

So he comes up to the house this morning. I had sent him an email, which he hadn't read. So instead I just started telling him what was in it. I had also said something about the separation.....so I mentioned it, and started to cry...which led to a bit of discussion. He said "I will explain it to you someday" (remember this).

So I go to town. He's at the house. I have some things to drop off at SiL's house. I text her, I go over, she's rounded up H to come over since she's trying to figure out his financials and why he's having to send me so much money. At first I think she's accusing me of gouging him. Then I say "but I send him all the bills and pdf of the reconciled accounts". Turns out he hadn't been opening any attachments. so when it looked like I was raiding the LOC's, I was actually covering household bills.

Then SiL says "let's get all the cards out on the table' and tries to get H to say he's done with the marriage "if you're done, you're done, if you're walking then be straight up". He won't say it. Then she asks me what I think, and I start crying and said something about "if you said our marriage was over 15 years ago,then thanks for wasting my time. Followed by "you said you would explain someday, but when someday comes, I won't be around". H makes his usual I'm uncomfortable with emotion face. Then SiL says "It's time, I'm going outside, you guys go downstairs and talk"

So he springs it on me. He did have an affair. 15 years ago for 6 months! And the guilt (H is a very black/white moral compass sort of man) has apparently been killing him for 15 years. He told his sister 2 days before.

Wow. I've forgiven him. (doesn't mean we won't need to talk about it). He cried, I cried, we hugged. we talked. He olds my hand. He said "I really like spending time with you" and I got one "I love you". We talked about retirement. We talked about finances. We talked about his almost EA with workfriend. Then we went upstairs and talked more with his sister.

When I left, I got the biggest, tightest hug I've had in a long time, and he whispered in my ear "I'm sorry". I whispered "It's okay, we'll talk, I love you".

So, he's at his sister's as he works tomorrow. He says "we'll talk about the separation when you get back from Halifax". (the 18th).

So we will see. Many miles to go here.
Posted By: kml

New developments-holy cow. Re:OW - 08/31/19 12:56 AM

Wow! That's a twist.

How do you feel about that? Is he willing to get counseling to address why he cheats?
Posted By: BarbH

I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 08/31/19 03:50 AM

Thanks KML. I'm still digesting this. So,he cheated 15 years ago, and I think the guilt has poisoned our marriage ever since (hence his statement that this marriage was over 15 years ago). His recent "EA" with the workfriend-when I read his messages, he broke it off with her, came home and said "it was a friendship that went crazy"....

His family all tells me he still loves me, and he's "confused". So his sister (where he's been staying for 2 months) finally cracks the shell and finds out about the old PA. Then she (as described above) gets us together and the above situation happens.

Now, 24 hours later, I've had to text him about a couple of things-regarding our financing. I get no response.

I'm weighing pros and cons:

Pro: "I love you". talk about future. "I like spending time with you". "I miss our holidays" The hug. The "I'm sorry".
"When your mother died everything just came crashing down (I suspected this). When his sister pushed him he wouldn't say "I'm done". Hasn't wanted to sign separation agreement, hasn't cancelled joint life insurance. Wants to get me firewood for the winter, wants me to stay for a year.

Cons: Crickets again today, no response. still no "I miss you". no "I want to come back". No ""Ill work on this"

My thoughts: He's always been a runner-when he gets emotional, he has to hide before coming back. Is he just "hiding" again now? Did he scare himself? Did I scare him by forgiving him? When he whispered "I'm sorry"., good grief, I assumed "I'm sorry for everything/the affair/our situation". Maybe he just meant "Sorry I'm still leaving?" But then why not say so? why the clinch?

When I look back, we seem to be much closer now than at BD and BD#2. 10 weeks ago-he was adamant we were done. "There's nothing to talk about".

I'm seeing my therapist again Friday. H wants to talk when I get back from Halifax. I now have no idea what to expect.

So KML-to answer your question. I was totally blown away by this, but it makes sense. I get the "you deserve someone better" "I know right from wrong" "when this is over, we won't even be friends" etc. I think this was the deep dark secret that when our marriage got rocky and I wanted counselling he refused out of fear/shame/guilt.

So-Yes, I want to rebuild a new, stronger, better marriage and partnership. If he comes back, I need to establish my boundaries first

-I've forgiven, but I have questions re the affair.
-"Workfriend" has to be work contact only.
-Individual and marriage counselling.

I don't know if he loves me enough to do this, even with his secret exposed.

So since he's not responding, back to dimness and businesslike manner I guess.
Posted By: job

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 08/31/19 01:48 PM

He may be "hiding" for a bit to mull over his next move and to give you time to settle down. He may think that you are angry and like a kid, they tend to avoid "mom and/or dad" until they things have settled down. He will contact you when he's ready. Continue to give him time and space to figure things out.

Try to enjoy your weekend.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 08/31/19 05:14 PM

Thanks Job for confirming what I was thinking. I will continue to give him his space. And I am enjoying my weekend-it's beautiful and sunny. So even though I'm working, I'm still enjoying!. Time and space. I think he thought I'd react much more dramatically. I'm not angry, I'm relieved that we are finally having some honesty in our relationship.

When I look back over the past 3 months or so, I need to thank everyone for their support-and at least I've gotten this far-where I am feeling more optimistic, but still able to try to think straight.

I'll take the 30 pound weight loss (and counting!), rekindled and new friendships as a bonus.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 08/31/19 05:24 PM

OH and Job, I believe you were the person who, when I posted "this divorce isn't going to be busted, I"m done" wisely said "oh no, it's not over yet.". How right you were.
Posted By: DejaVu6

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 09/01/19 12:25 AM

Hi Barb. I think he is retreating out of fear...that he said too much...that he is leading you on when heís not sure what he is feeling and doesnít want to go backwards and risk doing it all over again. This is the time with ZERO pressure is really, really critical. Step back from it. Give him time and space and keep DBing...GAL & 180s. Move ahead with no expectations as those will only set you up for disappointment. Really hoping things work out for you. (((HUGS)))
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 09/01/19 12:45 AM

Thanks DV6

Yes, I know I have to sit tight at this point. This is so counter-intuitive that it's not even funny. I want to call him up or text but I know I can't. I feel like we are at a crucial tipping point-that really I think (here I go mind reading) that he does want to recommit-but he's scared-I agree. He has even said that once or twice as in "what if we reconcile and we are in the same boat 2 years from now?". I think he is also aware that I will be asking him to come to counselling with me-and he's always been resistant. I know I've said my piece, he's well aware of where I stand, including that I don't want the old marriage back. My gut still says he's coming back, but I can't force him or tell him how to think. I'm holding onto when his sister said "If you're done, say you're done" and he wouldn't.

I do think, knowing him as I do, that if he decides to recommit, it will be an authentic, full-fledged promise. He doesn't do these things lightly, and as I said to his sister last night "he's a slow processor!".

I may end up posting rambling journalling tonight-I'm already feeling very anxious, and anything to avoid reaching out to him. Home, play with dog, hot tub and bed will be the plan, but there may well be 2 am posts, and I can't promise they will make a lot of sense.

Will keep you all posted. Wish me luck.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 09/01/19 05:06 AM

Journalling. Long night. I am so anxious. My sister and brother in law are off camping so H is in town alone. He's taken the afternoon off and went home 6 hours early. He's been home by himself all afternoon. I hope he's thinking. I hope he's okay. He hasn't contacted me. After the other afternoon which felt so genuine, I have no idea what is on his mind. I'm fighting the urge to text so instead I'm here.

I am so confused by him. I thought once he talked about his deep dark secret we'd be making steps forward. Then I think maybe we really are done and he's just too cowardly to say so. I feel like a yoyo. But then I don't think we are really done as he's had ample opportunity to say so.

Then I fall back on believe nothing of what they say and 1/2 of what they do. I have the feeling we will have some kind of decision before I leave on the 9th. I hope he decides to try. I'm spinning, and I know it.

When he said "I'm sorry". And I said " it's okay and I love you". He didn't say it back. Maybe after all that the "I'm sorry" was really good-bye.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 09/01/19 05:48 AM

I don't think this is MLC, I think he's a WAS.

And then there's this


If that link doesn't paste it's in the "stickies" for the MLC forum. "All the links in one place" 4th post down-Zues talking about the WAS....and signs of reconciliation. Actually Job, it was your post.

This sounds like maybe what I'm dealing with.
Posted By: job

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 09/01/19 12:02 PM

Regardless as to whether he is in MLC or a Walkaway, you would still proceed as you have been, i.e., give him plenty of space and time.

I know it's difficult, but you've got to keep the focus on you. The more you think about what he may or may not be doing, will drive you crazy. He may be at his sister's home doing chores, watching TV or the computer/phone or just chilling...but whatever he's doing, he hasn't forgotten you are what has been said.

Hang in there and try to enjoy your day. He will contact you when he's ready.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 09/01/19 03:10 PM

Thanks again Job. The hardest part is waiting....Knowing H as I do, I think he was holed up, turtling and thinking. he's a slow ponderer. I think we've now said everything that needs to be said, and it's up to him. I've returned to "business partner" level communication.....forwarded e-bills related to our house. I also hope his sister pushing him the way she did isn't felt like pressure from me.

This feels like just such a crucial time-that one way or the other, I'm waiting for the shoe to fall. 2 days ago, I would have said it was falling my way, now I just don't know. I think we still have a strong connection, but he's got a lot to think about and overcome-guilt around the affair/guilt as to what his affair guilt did to the marriage/guilt around his behaviour when my mother was dying/probably anger re our finances/guilt over not dealing with the finances. I think he's afraid of what my return conditions will be. He has also acknowledged (finally) that the reason I was working so much was to pay off bills. So he's no longer holding that against me.

I think he needs time to introspect. I have no say in this. Sitting tight. It's hard.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I need advice,maybe a 2x4 or crystal ball. - 09/02/19 11:10 PM

And...I'm still sitting. Not a word.
Posted By: BarbH

4 days after "big reveal" - 09/03/19 10:38 PM

So he went up to see his family at the ranch-drove right past our house. No word in 4 days after our big discussion Thursday. I was hoping, but no. His sisters both say he doesn't say much, but that he is clearly struggling-sleeping a lot, not going out, not going to the gym and breaking down crying. He still says he will talk to me after Halifax, so I am still sitting tight. It is so hard, as I can see a way back, but he can't.

I did text him just said "thank you for your honesty telling me about the affair".

If after Halifax he doesn't want to try-I will have to sever all contact. The refinance will be done and he can afford to move out.

Was the text too much?

Posted By: job

Re: 4 days after "big reveal" - 09/04/19 12:59 AM

Your text was fine. Now, you need to give him the space and time he needs to figure things out. Go on your trip, try to enjoy yourself and allow things to unfold in their own way and time.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: 4 days after "big reveal" - 09/04/19 01:50 PM

Journaling (again)

Well, i texted him to tell him to call me as we needed to confirm an appointment and discuss the house refinance. He did, as usual was a little terse for the first 2 sentences. Then he said he drove by because he didn't see my car and thought I was working (it was behind the fifth wheel). I find he tries to extend the phone conversations-asking questions about what's happening up here, did I go to his sisters, what his plans are for his days off. (he's coming up here)

so, the more I think about this affair 15 years ago, the angrier I get about it's impact on our marriage. instead of him "manning up" 15 years ago so we could deal with it then, he chose to attempt to ignore it. He didn't do this by getting closer to me, no, he just kept plugging along in his usual manner. Even then, I knew something was wrong and suggested counselling more than once-which he refused. Now I know why-his secret would come out. So instead, he chose to let our marriage corrode to the point it is now. Now it's really time to face the results of his bad choices. I see my therapist on Friday.

Fortunately I have plans for the next few days-coffee with an old friend this afternoon (by old I mean 83! she's like a second mother to both of us), Thursday-I need to get things done around the house, whether he is here or not. Friday-Dogsitting in the morning, then town in afternoon. Sat-small road trip, meeting sister.

If he starts an R conversation, so be it. If not, so be it as well.
Posted By: BarbH

More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 04:53 PM

Hi guys: I'm just getting angrier and angrier about our last 15 years of marriage! To recap: DB #2 June 14/19 "need to get my head together etc. ILYBINILWY" blah blah. 3 months of angst. I sense he's trying to figure out how to reconcile. Finally, 5 days ago he confesses he had a 6 month long PA 15 years ago. Kept it secret. Did not become a more loving, supportive husband, did not tell me about it. When I've suggested counselling in the past 15 years, knowing we were getting rocky, he refused (probably out of fear of revealing the PA. Jan-June (at least) this year attempts a flirtation, is infatuated with work friend. This has ended. Big conversation, confesses to PA 5 days ago. Has been sitting at home alone ever since. Wants to talk when I come back from Halifax vacation mid Sept.

I've been trying to db, doing my own IC, trying to figure out what is going on. I now feeling like saying this.

"Dear H:

I admit your confession of a PA 15 years ago was a bombshell, and as I have said I am able to forgive it, and I am glad you were finally honest about it as it has help me achieve some clarity. What I am having serious difficulty with is the subsequent ongoing 15 years of essentially lying. Had you confessed to the PA at the time, we would have dealt with it and moved on. Over the next 15 years, had you agreed to counselling the times I suggested it, we again could have dealt with our issues and hopefully be in a much stronger place now. Or, in lieu of that, had you attempted to become a more loving and supportive husband, we may also be in a much stronger place. However, we are now where we are-separated.

You have told me you have been attempting to "find a path back home" . I don't know if you still are, or not. I sense perhaps you are. I'm going to be bluntly honest here-the path back home is getting harder all the time. Here's three paths for you to ponder:

1. I can file immediately for divorce based on your admitted adultery of 15 years ago.

2. We remain separated for 1 year, as we are, and file a non contested divorce.

3. During that year should you decide you want to move forward with our relationship, which is hanging by a thread, you go to individual counselling to sort out your guilty emotions, why you cheated and why you were considering cheating again, and your difficulty expressing deep emotion and your feelings around death and dying. I need to see you owning your part in this. It will require a sincere apology and acknowledgement on your part, and ongoing marriage counselling for both of us. I am continuing with my individual counselling.

Amazingly, I am still willing to put in the work necessary to move forward in our relationship."

I haven't sent this. Don't know if I will. Or if I will wait until our next conversation and see what he has to say. It has helped to at least write this down. I am seeing my therapist on Friday-and will discuss this with her.

any feedback/advice?
Posted By: CanBird

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 05:21 PM

My advice: Hang in there & do not send this letter. Breathe. Think about your trip. My mom was born in Peggy's Cove. I bet it'll be beautiful this time of year. Focus on your trip. What needs to get done before you leave? What will you do there? Focus more on you. He's dealing or not, with things in his own way. Don't push ideas on him. Let him stew & figure himself out. Oh course we wonder & we care, but care from a distance.

When I think about my H MLC, I view it as him having a mental illness. It makes it easier for me to process this challenge.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 05:26 PM

Thanks Canbird! I actually no longer think this is MLC-I think it's 15 yrs of guilt related to his first affair. The only thing that keeps me slightly sane right now is knowing he voluntarily broke off his "current" EA before it progressed to a PA, and that he still says things like "I like spending time with you" and obliquely talks about the future. It's helped to just write out what I would say. It's clarified goals in my mind.

What I need to figure out now is whether or not I really want him back. It depends on what I see coming from him. So far (over the past years) I've done the heavy lifting as far as emotional work-it's his turn. I don't know if he's man enough to do it.
Posted By: job

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 05:28 PM

DO NOT SEND THAT LETTER/TEXT!!! Place it in a box and sit it up on a shelf or burn the letter later. Sending that letter will not help your situation and it just might push him further and further away. That letter will only make him feel even more guilty about what he's done in the past.

Keep the focus on you and your upcoming trip. There will come a time to discuss that affair from years ago, but now is not the time to do so. Give him plenty of space and time to choke on.

Go, have a good time and leave the MLC mess behind you. Dig deeper for patience and when you sit quietly, the answers will come.

Keep your focus on you and what you need to do to get ready for your trip. BTW, when he asks a lot of questions about what is going on up at your place, be vague...you do not have to go into detail about anything. If he wants to know something, then he needs to bring himself up there and find out for himself. You do not need to be chatty w/him. Answer short and sweet and/or change the subject if you don't want him to know something.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 05:32 PM

Thanks Job-I knew if i posted here first someone would slap me silly! I'm not chatty at all any more, but I find he is becoming more so. He'll be up here tomorrow so I need to brace myself. Unfortunately, all my coffee dates are in town today and I need to get the house organized tomorrow so can't leave. I'll just keep busy. Booking a db coaching session too.

the only place that letter is available is here, on the board. It helped just to write it out.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 05:33 PM

Guilt vs MLC

Potato/potato right? (Imagine the pronunciation)
Posted By: job

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 05:42 PM


If he becomes Chatty Cathy, listen and listen closely. They love to chat about anything and everything and if you really listen, he may tell you things that you weren't even aware. Nod, smile and validate. I know that this will make you angry, but trust me, you need to become the best actress that you can be when you are around him. Once he's gone, scream all you want of beat the stuffing's out of a pillow.
Posted By: DejaVu6

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/04/19 09:51 PM

YesÖ do NOT send that letter. Read it as if you are him and notice how it makes you feel. If your intention is to shame him and blame him 100% and push him further away, this will do it. Are you wrong? Probably less wrong than he is. But...what is your goal? Understanding, forgiveness and reconciliation or being right? One of the things, I think, that prevents WASs from returning is the sheer weight of the shame and the guilt and having to face it all and then living with it every day alongside the person who now knows what a jerk you've been...for my H, it was five years and for your H...15!!! He has been living with this for 15 years. Believe me, you do not need to make him feel worse.

What you want to show him, if R is what you truly want, is that you won't spend the next 15 years throwing this in his face whenever you have a disagreement. I'm not suggesting he get a free pass but beating him over the head with the past is not going to help. I KNOW this is the main thing that prevented my H from wanting to try again...he had a few days where he was going to...but it was just too much and looked too hard from his perspective. He had to start over and try to reinvent himself with someone new. His ego and self esteem was just too beat up for him to do anything else.

Like everyone else has suggested... take the focus off him. Step back. Take your trip. Enjoy yourself and really, really think about what it is you would like going forward. (((HUGS)))
Posted By: BarbH

Re: More advice please-I might email him - 09/05/19 12:41 AM

Hi DV6-I've already told him I've forgiven the affair itself, and I've promised I won't throw it in his face. I'm having a great deal of difficulty reconciling myself with the last 15 years.

I feel I've been lied to for 15 years. And its not as if he said to himself "self, I really messed up and I don't want her to know so I am going to be the best husband possible". No. Our marriage was rocky (i would have said communication issues) and he wouldn't go to counselling or address it. So really, he had an affair, then lied to me for 15 years, then tried to leave with a vague "I need space" comment after attempting to have another affair.

I know he's feeling incredibly guilty. So when you say yours had a few days where he was going to try, but it was too much and looked too hard-I have the feeling this may be my situation too. He hasn't worked in our marriage in years, and I hate to think he's not man enough to do it now.

Then I try to balance it off with statements he's making lately like "I like spending time with you", and the "I love you" of the other day. And the fact that he voluntarily broke off his work affair before I found out. I am so confused.

so it's not so much the affair, although I do have questions about it of course, its the lying and lack of effort afterwards.

I'm really just venting here now, because my head is spinning.

I'm really having trouble deciding now if I want to reconcile. I will be talking to my therapist about that. I feel used.

So thank you all for allowing me to vent. For now, I haven't sent the email, and I won't. I have a DB coaching session booked tomorrow, and H is supposed to be here tomorrow as well (later). He has said we will talk when I am back. I wish I knew what he was going to say!

For now, i will vent here. I will enjoy my vacation. We will get the refinance done at the end of the month. We will talk when I get back (I guess). I will see my therapist. I will talk to DB coach. I will stand for now, but that is getting more and more tenuous.

Its a hard, hard day.
Posted By: BarbH

Journaling/depressed - 09/05/19 08:14 PM

Just spoke with Lenny at DB...she's optimistic for us! (yay). But here I am feeling down in the dumps again. Texted H asking him to bring up the blue suitcase when he comes up (he had said he'd be up today). "I'm in town, I'll text you when I'm back at sister's". Oh. I texted and just said "sorry, thought you said you were up today, must have misunderstood! I'm in town tomorrow, should I just pick it up there?".

How can I be "friendly" when I don't see him? Here I told Lenny I see him about once a week. I know he's probably still scared after his "big reveal" of the PA but that was a week ago. Honestly I'm having such a hard time and feeling so depressed about the whole thing.

How has him telling about the affair not seem to change anything?? It just feels like he's left all over again.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Journaling/depressed - 09/05/19 08:26 PM

I guess I do see him about once a week. Hopefully sometime this set of days off, hopefully before I leave for Halifax. Hopefully before we "talk" about whatever we are talking about when I get back. I don't want a relationship talk unless he's saying he wants to come back. I don't want to hear he's moving out. I don't want to hear he thinks it's hopeless. I will just keep on being upbeat/pma/friendly. Good thing i have counsellor tomorrow.

I hoped his confession was such a breakthrough. Maybe he just thinks it means now he can be free without feeling guilty about me thinking it was about me.
Posted By: Gerda

Re: Journaling/depressed - 09/06/19 12:53 AM

Barb, I am not posting so much these days but sometimes I read your thread. I am sorry for what you are going through!

I am struck when I read your posts, and in general the posts of people new to this, by something I also thought in the beginning, that your sitch will be different in terms of how long it takes. I thought that about mine, and I am on year seven. Not that yours will go that long, but two months is not long enough for anyone. Thinking you should work it out now will only ensure that you get another crisis soon thereafter. If you just started posting here in July, your H is at the very beginning and that you should not think about anything he says or does at all. There is simply no way that he is going to be able to go through what he needs to go through this quickly if you want to actually have a real H back at some point. If you don't let him run through his whole crisis, he is not going to heal. NOTHING you say or do will change him. All you can do is be kind and open to him. But all your questions about why he doesn't want to try, what he believes about your marriage, what is his timeline, all of that is just pointless with MLC. Your sister-in-law has no idea because she thinks this is just about an affair or a decision. If he is really in MLC, you do not want to have any R talk or take anything he says seriously as far as your R for a year or two. If you love him, let him go down this long dark road so he can get through it.

One thing that helped me in the beginning was writing a list of all the expectations I had of H and our marriage under the heading "Expectations of H that I Surrender." I put it away and take it out maybe every six months. When I look at that list now, I can't believe how far I have come. You are still operating under the expectations you had when he was the real H. If he is in MLC, he is not that man right now. Don't try to get anything out of the guy he is right now. Distract yourself in any way you can, but let him go!
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Journaling/depressed - 09/06/19 04:38 AM

Thank you Gerda. I've been reading your threads too, and honestly I don't know how you have the patience and fortitude.

You're right, I just want this over and done, and quickly! The path back home seems so obvious to me. I spoke with Lenny today, and we aren't sure if this is MLC or not-potentially his MLC was at 45 when he had the affair in the first place-and now we're dealing with residue guilt.

Regardless, I am working on being kind, being the lighthouse, being the safe harbour. He appears to not (at least) be lying to me, he is asking his sister questions, and she is passing them onto me. It's like he is testing out our situation. I'm okay now with contact every week or so, and pleasant conversations.
He also seems to be worried about coming back too soon. He's mentioned more than once, "what if we reconcile and 2 years from now we're in the same boat?" It's a good question.
He's never spewed at me, never bad mouthed me to anyone. I do think he is working his way through. I also think I'm willing (at this point) to consider giving him a couple of years.

Thank you for your kindness. I just have these awful despairing moments.
Posted By: BarbH

After Halifax... - 09/06/19 06:02 PM

Okay, so I talk to him yesterday, it's friendly and congenial-he's at the pub with BIL watching football. And may come up will let me know. I'm going to bed-text him "do I leave the light on " No, he'll be up in the morning. "Okey dokey, good night". Well, it's morning,11 am, no word. He's very short when texting, but seems quite friendly and talkative, even jokey (as I am) on the phone. But he doesn't contact me, it's always me having to contact him about finances, or the house.

I'm worried about when I come back from Halifax. His last words were "we'll talk when you get back". This is after the wrenching afternoon where he confessed his affair of 15 years ago, then hugged me hard and said he was sorry. I was over the moon at the time, but agreed to we'll talk after I get back.

He's also been talking to his sister (as she talks to me) about his concerns regarding retirement (toxic workplace), and whether or not I will "throw the affair" in his face down the road. (I'm encouraged about the "down the road" bit). He can retire, once the refinance is done, and I will never throw it in his face, and told her to tell him so. It feels like he's feeling me out by using her as an intermediary.

On reflection, I'm worried this talk will be a "this changes nothing" talk, in which case, what's the point of having it? Or even worse, "I confessed, I'm sorry, but I'm totally done". I also am worried that he was to some extent pressured by his sister setting up to talk to me about the affair, although I think by telling her two days earlier he was maybe warming up to telling me. I am rolling around in my mind either telling him (if I see him) or texting him....something about the talk.

Do I? When I'm on my way back? Something like this:

"H. I know we said we'd talk when we got back. I just want you to know that I am aware you asked for 6 months of time and space-I am very willing to give you what you need. While I am happy to talk to you whenever you want, about whatever you want, whether it's us, retirement, the affair, or even the dog's teeth! I do not want you to feel pressured into talking about our conversation before I left. What I said at that time still stands, and I am trying hard to honour your desire to have space you need at this time."

Or do I just ignore it and see if he brings it up?

What says the wisdom of the board? I'm also worried his sister will pressure him into talking to me about it again.
Posted By: job

Re: After Halifax... - 09/06/19 07:05 PM


Do not send that message to him. Again, you are trying to rush the process and you can't. Leave well enough alone and allow him to come to you. You do realize that you sound like you are putting pressure on him as well as pursuing him? If you are trying hard to honor his desire to have space and time....then give it to him. Texting, email or phoning him about that affair situation, retirement, etc., is not listening to him and what he wants or needs right now.

It is very normal for them to say that they are going to do something or come by and/or keep an appointment and then don't do it. Something else may have caught his attention or he went home to sleep. Whatever it is, it's just the norm for them and that's why you need to keep your expectations at zero at all times. The man you knew and loved is not the man you are dealing w/right now. You are dealing w/the mirror image of him, i.e., the opposite of the pre-crisis man.

I wouldn't have my SIL passing on messages to him. In fact, I wouldn't share one thing w/her. What is going is between you and your h. The more your SIL tries to get things fixed between you, the longer it is going to take. I know she means well, but she's not helping him or you at the moment. She's actually putting undue pressure on your h and he's not getting the time and space from her either. You may want to meet up w/your SIL and ask her to step back a little for now. She doesn't understand MLC or walkaways.

I wouldn't worry too much about what he said about "well talk when you get back". That may have been said at the spur of the moment and by the time you return, he may have forgotten about it. If he wanted to talk to you about something, he would have done it by now. So, file that comment away and focus on your trip.

Give him the space and time that he's asked for. If he texts you, then give it a couple of hours and then reply back. You do not want to sound like you are sitting on your phone waiting for him to contact you. I know you are anxious to know what is going through his mind, but you won't know until he's ready to tell you and that may not be for quite some time. If you and your SIL put pressure on him, he very well may say that he's had enough and walk away completely. I don't think that is what you want at this time.

Keep the focus on you and your trip. Dig deeper for patience and try to lower your expectations.
Posted By: CanBird

Re: Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?" - 09/06/19 07:40 PM

Well said Job. I agree 100% with your advice on everything.

Barb, give him space. Listen to what Job said. Read it over & over.

I get what you're going through, in a sense. (But a lot I don't know, my H has been away at sea/work since April)

I want nothing more than for things to be okay with my M, I want to fix everything, figure things out, get him to talk, but it has to be when he's ready. He's on his own journey, and who knows what's going on in his head. YES it makes us crazy to not know what's going on. Why can't they figure things out quicker? Who knows. They don't even know what's going on.

Consider yourself lucky, that you know where your husband is. Consider yourself lucky that he's with family. Consider yourself lucky that he still communicates with you. You are going on a vacation! Now is the perfect time for you to ease off on the reins, and let him come to you. DON'T bring anything up to him about wanting to talk. Let him bring it up.

Leave the fire alone. Don't poke at it. Don't ask SIL about it; that's poking too. Leave the fire to the fire starter. It's up to him to put it out. He started it. Let him tend to it.

Breathe, Breathe, Breathe. Don't hold your breath. Continuously breathe. In with the good, out with the bad.

I enjoy reading your posts. I'm routing for you. Be strong!
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?" - 09/07/19 01:17 AM

Hi Canbird and Job:

Thanks again. You know how people say "let it out on the board" I'm about to do that again. So after his big cryfest/confession of a week ago-he's up today. chitchat, chitchat....refers to "next year's garden" and he "isn't sure now about the house" But still regressed again and rather icy. On the plus side-he is getting me firewood "we need to get you firewood for the winter"....and "we should fix the Grand Vitara because you'll need four wheel drive this winter". But standoffish like crazy.

Yes, I have taken comfort in the fact he's at his sisters and she verifies everything he says he's doing. But I think I'm at the point, as you have all pointed out, where I will ask her to just be a friend-if he has anything to say he can either say it to me or find a counsellor or talk to her-she isn't the middleman.

I had a great visit with my therapist-lots of talk around setting boundaries for my well-being. We've come up with 4.All of which i do not need his agreement for, I can simply walk away.

Again, no relationship talk, just business. She reinforced for me that his confusion isn't my problem to fix. I don't know how many people have to say this for me to get it!

I'm working on my patience, and starting Tai-chi for my anxiety.

Canbird-thanks for rooting for me! I'm pulling for you too! I'm pulling actually for everyone to come to their personal happiness, in whatever form it takes.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?" - 09/07/19 01:31 AM

So annoyed. I had to take my tire in for repair, it picked up a nail. His spare needed fixing so I took it too. Just texted "I have your tire back". He read it. How hard is it to say Thanks. Good lord, even basic manners take a beating]
Posted By: Grace21

Re: Guess I'm standing. Was "now what?" - 09/07/19 01:53 AM

Barb - the first thing that came to my mind when I read your post was "you took his tire in hoping he would appreciate you". I wonder if this is true? Remember. Have no expectations. It will only drive you crazy.


Posted By: BarbH

He doesn't deserve me. - 09/07/19 04:08 AM

No Grace, I didn't have an expectation-other than that of essential manners. He was here when I left and asked me to take it in for him. I did as I was going there anyway. Picked them both up and brought them home. Someone does something for you, particularly when you've asked, you say thanks. That's it.

Honestly guys, the more I think about this the angrier and sadder I get. I am a good person, even if I say so myself-I'm smart, good job, hardworking, outdoorsy, friendly, and not at all bad looking for a 58 yr old! (and I'm a great cook).

I can forgive the affair itself. I don't think I can forgive the 15 years of lies. They weren't even 15 years of treating me like a princess to make up for the fact that he got away with an affair-the last few years were more I was the chief cook/bottlewasher/banker/wager earner/toy buyer., while recovering from cancer and dealing with my mother with dementia. No flowers, no acknowledgement. Then he had the almost affair. And now he's "confused". I think he is trying to find a way back. Well, he got himself into this. Why do I want to stay with a cheat and a liar?

I don't care that he's talking about maybe not selling the house next year, or getting me firewood, or fixing the 4x4 for me to use over the winter. I can buy my own 4x4, I can arrange my own firewood. If he's making future plans that he thinks includes me-well....no.

I am no longer confused. I think I've achieved detachment. Why on earth am I having angst over someone who can't be bothered. I mourn for what we might have had, but lost. And what we could have, but won't. Yes, it will be hard, but I will be fine.

Our house refi is signed on the 27th. All consumer debt paid at that point. I can swing all the payments if he backs out, and I can prep the house and property for sale. He can leave. I will be sure to get him to sign the separation agreement and then we will be having a very difficult conversation.

I really no longer care that he's having a crisis, or if he's just behaving like a jerk. Honestly, he's been a jerk for much of the last 15 years. He can either man up-admit he wants to come back, abjectly apologize-and start individual counselling, or not, it's up to him. He's 60, it's time to grow up. I will no longer be playing along. I will be drawing my line in the sand. I will be filing for divorce at the 1 year mark when I can file uncontested, unless things dramatically change. He really doesn't deserve me.

thank you all for your support. Things are becoming much, much clearer. Why am I standing for this? Part of me will always love him, but the other part of me, loves me more.
Posted By: peacetoday

Re: He doesn't deserve me. - 09/07/19 09:31 PM


It is very difficult

I know MY M was not good..for many years b4 MLC,
but I think the hardest thing was giving up the cinderella fantasy of being M and raising my kids with their dad

and believing we would R and create something better

I still loved my XH and I didn't want to be D

It will take you a while to grieve this loss and We go through many stages as we process this and begin to let go
and this takes a while--
while you are waiting to know his next move, you are healing and still creating a new life on your own
one day the pieces come together

I think you may be disappointed after his confession, maybe you expected something different or more from him and Im sorry for your pain-
The best you can do is to continue to begin to create a good life for you, hobbies, friends, church, books, volunteering ect..yoga, meditation vacations as you are already doing.... and with your free time you can keep a watch on your H actions

Many of these spouses are not well and without therapy and professional help they may not recover...for some time
This is a good place to vent as you repair the loss of this while your H decides and if you want to wait

The thing is we have no where to go anyway, so it makes good sense to grieve it, while we move forward
Posted By: BarbH

Boundaries - 09/07/19 11:41 PM

Thank you peacetoday, I'm glad you understand. I simply cannot take any more of the push and pull. Even though when he came up he was pleasant, and talked "as if" we had a future (garden, rethinking selling house in spring etc). After our last hug a week ago, when I was leaving i said "are we on hugging terms or not?" The answer was "No, not right now". I think these are check-ins. He says he "has things to do" but comes up, picks up nothing, does nothing. And yesterday I left before him, and I noticed (via tracker) he left about an hour later.

I am seriously already exhausted by this, particularly at the thought that possibly his MLC was 15 years ago, and we've essentially been playing it out ever since. As everyone has so thoughtfully pointed out-if it's not resolved or worked through when it happens, it reappears later-and I think here we are.

So yes, while I am waiting-I am regaining my perspective on myself and my life. Off to Halifax Monday (if hurricane Dorian co-operates!) for the week, H will be staying here and has made "promises" about roughing in plumbing, cleaning shop and horse pens (funny, these were the issues he said he was tired of doing). I will see, I am not holding my breath.

He's coming up tomorrow prior to me leaving in the wee hours of Monday. I plan on setting three boundaries with him:

1. H, when you say you will do something, like telling me you will text before coming up here, or that you will transfer me bill money on Friday, and you don't follow through, it makes me think that you are not reliable. I would appreciate you following through on your statements, or not making them at all. ( I know I can't enforce this one, other then letting him know how I feel. And as my therapist and I both think he's thinking about coming back, this may have some impact, however I will continue to believe nothing).

2. Regarding the bills-I text you every Wednesday before your payday, and I pay the bills on Friday. Your commitment was to transfer me the payment on payday Friday. I will no longer be reminding you to transfer me the funds. As we agreed, I will continue to send you the bills on Wednesday, so you have time to set up the transfer on your payday. You can set up a post dated transfer on the bank's website. If you do not transfer me the money, I am keeping an account and this will be settled either with the refinance or when the house is sold.

3.When I do communicate with you by text or email, or when I do something for you like having your tire fixed and picking it up (at your request) I would appreciate the simple good manners of acknowledging and/or thanking. (Again, I can't enforce this, but my volume and communication will be dropping significantly-full on business mode now, no more favours, no more conversation).

I need to regain control of my life. I don't care if he feels pressure or not. This is about me, not him. There are more boundaries to come.

He stills says "we will talk when you are back", well, yes, yes we will.

"H., I appreciate you still say you are confused. This is actually confusing me as well. I appreciate that this has been difficult for you, and although I had offered to help, this is not my work to do. I appreciate your honesty regarding your infidelity, and as someone who cares about you, you need to think about talking to someone to help you sort out your confusion".
(This will be a non-negiotiable at some point if he actually wants to reconcile, and I think he knows it as his sister said the other day 'he won't do counselling". Well, that's on him too).

How's my GAL you ask? Dinner and music jam at friend's tonight. Halifax for a week on Monday, Signed up to start Tai chi on the 17th (and have a couple of friends coming with me!) Diligently reading my book for book club. Oh and I went for lunch with sister-some guy at the next table kept catching my eye and smiling...that was nice!

Posted By: job

Re: Boundaries - 09/08/19 01:02 AM


I do understand your frustration and reclaiming your life. Barb, we are all fixers and believe in following through on what we say that we will do. Patience becomes a challenge for us because we can see what needs to be done and yes, they need to see someone about their issues. We can make rational decisions, but they generally can't because they are operating on emotion. You cannot rationalize w/someone who isn't rational. Emotionally charged individuals will not "hear" you. They tend to react rather than think things through.

MLC is not easy to deal w/especially if this is a flare up from the first go round. We all go through life transitions, i.e., early teens, 20, 30, etc., and if the transitions are not completed, then the "major" mlc takes place. It could very well be that your h was experiencing a life transition 15 years ago and he didn't complete it and now the "major" mlc is taking place.

When communicating w/him, you want to keep your conversations and lists short and sweet. Too much info will go right over his head. He won't be able to retain much of it because of the issues going on in his brain. He may be suffering from brain fog, i.e., exhibiting confusion, difficulty concentrating and retaining info, loss of interest, loses time and can't keep his appointments, etc. All symptoms of depression. I'm not making excuses for him because I've been down this road many years ago and can tell you that you need to keep things short and to the point otherwise it will go in one ear and out the other and he will only focus on a few words and the rest he will tune out.

Just a suggestion, try to phrase your "boundaries" in a way that you don't sound like his mother. You do not want to sound like you are telling him how he should behave. You do not want him to look at you as his mother, i.e., nagging him about things. They become very resentful of authority figures and may view your "boundaries" as trying to control him by telling him how he should behave, etc.

We advise posters to keep their expectations at zero because the person you knew and loved is gone for a while. They become the exact opposite of that pre-crisis person. They act out and like teenagers and depression takes over and they can only think of themselves. They become self centered and selfish. Many sit around staring at the walls in the evenings and time slows way down for them and they don't realize how much time has passed. They say that they will do things and then don't, they forget appointments and errands. Many forget to pay their bills. Yes, it's frustrating and there is nothing we can do about it because it is their journey and they have to be the ones to decide to get help. Many do not think that there is anything wrong w/them.

Again, I am not making excuses for his behavior, however, expectations need to remain as close to zero as possible because if he doesn't live up to what you "expect" of him, you will become angry, resentful and frustrated. His journey is his own to take. It takes the patient of a saint when dealing w/someone in mlc.

Your journey is to rediscover you, the person you were before you married. This is your time to do the things that you want to do and who knows...you may realize that you lost a part of yourself in the marriage and now can reclaim that part and enjoy the new you.

Please try to enjoy your trip and leave the mlc at home as much as possible. I know it's going to be difficult to do so, but you need this break to help you recharge your battery.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Boundaries - 09/08/19 01:42 AM

thanks Job.[quote=job]Barb,

Patience becomes a challenge for us

Oh yes, my therapist and I have discussed how this situation is a growth opportunity-she's referring to it as my "second spring" and feels one of the gifts I will receive is developing my patience. Yes, I am reclaiming myself. Over the last few years I really lost myself trying to make our marriage work, not realizing he was dragging along this tremendous emotional baggage of guilt and remorse over his infidelity. I do give him credit for breaking off the EA and confessing that to me as well. However, whether or not he will do the work necessary to come back remains to be seen. I'm just trying to avoid getting roped back in while he's figuring it out.

You know though, the one consistent action I am seeing (and have for maybe the past month), is his both leaving the tracker on and telling me where he's going/what he's been doing when he gets the chance. Yesterday when he was here he said "John's taking me out tonight" and sure enough, he was at the pub. (I don't worry about what he's doing there, it doesn't matter. If any woman is after his bright orange plaid shirt/cargo shorts/sandals and socks combo...well, she's welcome to it.) and that today he'd probably be going out to the lake to see a couple of our friends at their cabin...and yes, there he is.

It's weird, as he doesn't really seem to be reacting emotionally. His usage of future tenses is ramping up, and his thoughtfulness in some ways seems to be as well, and fairly consistently. However, I will not get my hopes up-after that major twist last week, and his subsequent retreat....I really have to protect myself. I do think he's still feeling me out after confessing the infidelity. But, like I said, I'm done with that push and pull. I am distancing myself. (Literally! 3000 km!). I am done hand holding him.

As far as making excuses-I know you aren't. I think I was, and I'm not either-I'm just trying to phrase boundaries so his actions have less impact on me. At this point, I'm not even really concerned about what impact they have on him.

As far as those boundaries-I'll revisit #1 and #2, and not even mention #3-as that is one I can just do-drop the volume and content of the texts/emails to a strictly business level. He also asked me to text him pictures etc from Halifax-I just said "I'll be posting on my facebook page".

I will see how the "after Halifax" talk goes-it's probably nothing.

Oh, and yes, I thought of the animals-I have a girlfriend who will keep an eye on the horses-feeder and water trough. She'll pop by and check on the cats too. I'm not really worried as he is quite concerned about the animals, particularly what may happen to them if I have to move. He likes animals, as do I. I really think that's partially why he wants me to stay for a year-to sort out the critters.

I am so excited about the trip! And, my Tai chi-always wanted to do it. Therapist suggested yoga for my anxiety, but when I said "Tai chi" she was thrilled!.
Posted By: BarbH

now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 03:05 PM

I just refriended him on facebook. On our android device, I was scrolling through my history to delete a few things-and I see his search history. How to set up facebook dating.

I am enraged. I am clearly Plan B. All his bullsh!t (sorry) about confessing/consumed by guilt all the rest of it-what a bunch of BS. I am going so dark now that it's not even funny. Refinance/separation agreement and we're done.

What an @ss. What happened to tears, I'm sorry, we'll talk, I like spending time with you. That's done. It's history.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 04:16 PM

And tinder, and plenty of fish. WOW. I was angry, I was hurt, now I am just going as dark as I possibly can. OH, lets not forget stripchat.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 04:41 PM

It's difficult to describe my emotions right now....I did have hope, now my worst fears are confirmed. And, honestly, I'm not even crying. I'm sad, and I'm angry, but the simple facts are that he chose to cheat 15 years ago, he chose to lie for 15 years, he almost cheated again this spring, then he tells me he is sorry. But he's on all the dating sites about as fast as he can. And stripchat? seriously???? live sex cams.

I'm just quickly rewriting my will before I fly, and reassigning my POA. I still need him onboard for the refinance. So I will just be dark.
Posted By: Grace21

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 04:57 PM

Barb - I'm so sorry. It must be a shock for you to see it so blatantly.

My H shared a lot of naked pics with I don't know how many women on the internet - facebook friends, whatever. While we were living together and supposedly trying to work things out. So, I definitely can relate.


But, I'm curious. Why did you re-friend him? Why put yourself through that? Unfriend him, and block. You don't need to cause yourself more anxiety. I also wonder why you are still tracking your H? I would recommend deleting that app immediately. It will only drive to crazy and it can become obsessive. I know. I was there.


I can understand you need communication and cooperation from your H about the refi, but just keep it all business. It's for your own sanity.

Hang in there.

Posted By: BarbH

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 05:09 PM

Thanks Grace.

I had unfriended him, and he asked about my trip-when I said "it'll be on facebook", he asks to refriend. As we had just had the "big confession" etc..I did. He's unfriended again. I don't need to see him. And yes, I am done tracking him. The door has slammed closed.

My personality is that I can give, and give, and give. But once I'm done, I'm done. And I am done. I will have trouble keeping it civil until the 27th-when we do the paperwork.

I understood the 15 year ago adultery, I thought we could work through the last 15 years, I thought it was positive when he broke off his EA, and then confessed to me. But...clearly, he's a long term liar, and a cheat. He even had the nerve to say to me "I'm not dating". Liar, liar, liar.

Grace, thank you for the hugs. It means a lot to know people are out there listening and caring.

I'm angry at myself for being such a dupe for the last years. I do deserve so, so much more.
Posted By: job

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 07:33 PM


He may not be dating. He may be out there surfing the net to see what's available, or these sites were initially logged into before he confessed his infidelity. I'm not surprised that he visited those site, but again, we can't "assume" that he's still visiting them.

As for the tracker, evidently he is trying to prove to you that he's not out there running around. If the app is on your phone, definitely remove it. It is creating a lot of issues for you and you do not need to know what he's doing because you are separated at the moment.

Unfriend and block him from your FB page. If you want to show him photos upon your return, you can do so if you want to. He doesn't need to know everything you are doing.

Glad you have someone who is going to stop by and check on the animals.

Breathe! Step back from the snooping and if something should pop up on your phone or computer that looks like something you don't want to see....send it to the trash bin.

From this day forward, it is time for you to reclaim yourself and focus on your trip. BTW, did Halifax survive Dorian and your friend is okay?

Barb, the one thing I truly had to learn was that I couldn't control anything that my spouse was doing...the only thing I could control was how I reacted to it. If you haven't done so, read the detachment thread. Detaching takes time, but it will help you learn how to not react to all that he does while you are separated.

Try to enjoy your trip and travel safely.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 08:13 PM

Thanks Job.

No, he was downloading the facebook dating app on Sept 6...1 wk after his big remorseful confession. So he is coming up, and I am done. He is no longer my spouse. We are business partners. Once we sign the refi/separation agreement he can do whatever he wants. He has lied to me for 15 years. He doesn't get any more passes. It's not even snooping, I just went on android to clear my browsing history of DB stuff...and there it was...My take? He initially thought he could leave me and hook up with "workfriend" that fell through. Now he's out there-facebook dating app was just the latest. I am clearly Plan B, and I am clearly worth so much more than that. I'm good. I'm settled. I'm even feeling glimmers of happiness as I can see not having to deal with this anymore.

I can't control him, but I can control my responses. As long as he is behaving like he's single-we are only business partners and my life will go on.
Posted By: job

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 09:28 PM

Enjoy your trip and I hope the weather is far better than it was the last couple of days in Halifax. Drive safely, relax and have some fun. It's a new chapter in your book of life. When you have time, make a list of all of the things that you might like to do and then start doing them one by one.

Take care of yourself as you need some time to recharge your battery. Stress can do a lot of things to your body and you've been under quite a bit of it lately. Time for "me" time.
Posted By: DejaVu6

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 10:45 PM

So sorry Barb. Glad you unfriended and blocked your H. I am actually grateful that my XH unfriended and blocked me four years before BD (he told me he deleted the app...lied of course). Even if he hadnít, that would have been my first move. Honestly, the less you know, the easier it is to detach. I have no desire to know anything that is going on in my XHís life. Even though we share custody of our kids 50/50, I make.a point of never asking them how their dad is or what they did with him or anything like that. On occasion, they volunteer something and I just smile and comment on it if they need me to but thatís about it. For all intent and purposes, he is dead to me. He doesnít even have a name in my contacts on my phone. His name used to be No One but then I got worried my kids would see it so I changed it to Kids Dad. I think Job is right. I think he is checking it all out. Not sure he will be too happy with what he finds. (((HUGS)))
Posted By: BarbH

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/08/19 11:15 PM

Thank you all.

I have no words to express how thankful I am for all of you and the support of this board. There are now just too many strikes against him. Affair/15 yrs of lies/EA/ghosting me and sending cruel messages to his friends while my mother was dying (about how the house was so peaceful since I wasn't there)/crocodile tears ++/The confession/the hug/the "apology".....he won't be happy, but this is "not my chickens, not my eggs". He's made his bed. Essentially at any point along this journey he could have manned up and we would have dealt with it. It's not like I didn't suggest counselling more than once, and was turned down. No emotional work whatsoever. We could have had a terrific fun and fulfilling retirement-and I still will-it's just a little further out now.

He's coming up to farmsit while I'm gone. Last time we spoke he said "we'd talk after I got back from Halifax". Well, today's conversation will be short and sweet.

"there's no need to talk after Halifax. While you continue to lie to me and scour the internet dating sites, we are simply business partners. When I get back, I will see you for the mortgage signing on the 27th. We will sign the separation agreement at that time as well."

And then I will leave to carry on packing. If he decides not to stay, he can figure out what to do with the dog. I have neighbours already lined up to do cats and horses. if need be. I honestly don't care what he does. I feel like now I'm observing a science experiment. I am still sad at the loss of hopes/dreams/ and apparently 15 years of my life. But I'm detached. The thought of him actually kind of repulses me now.
Posted By: bttrfly

Re: now he's facebook dating - 09/09/19 12:46 AM

Barb I'm sorry to read all you're going through but I want to ask, do you think he's a sex addict?
Posted By: BarbH

Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 01:02 AM

So, I phone him and I say "that talk we were going to have after Halifax? Don't bother, we will have it now. As long as you are internet trolling, we are a business relationship only. I can drop off the dog or you can come up in the morning". Tears, tears and more tears, "I want to come home, I just don't know how". I cry, he cries. He's unfriended (yes, I looked 2 days ago) the "WF". the apps-a friend told him to look there-as Job said "he was just checking it out".

I said "if you want to come home, I want you to, but here's the gameplan. Come home, we will talk. I don't want the old marriage. You lying for 15 years, when you could have manned up at any point so we could deal with it, and trying to figure it out in your head hasn't worked so well. You need counselling. You need help dealing with the original infidelity, the ongoing secrecy, the EA, the fear of death, your parent's deaths." He's always rejected that in the past. He didn't this time. This is his only, slim route home.

We are talking. he'll be home in an hour. He can stay while I'm gone. He must do IC. When his counsellor and he think he's ready, we will do MC. Transparency plan. I think he should stay at sister's for a while, we can date. This is the plan.

I do still love him, but I am not Plan B. I told him he needs to do the work. If he doesn't, we will stay separated.

It's not classic DB'ing, but I've sensed for a while he's trying to figure out how to come home.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 01:03 AM

bttrfly-I guess we'll find out!
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 01:05 AM

Wow, am I all over the map! Nope, still not Plan B....will keep you all updated. I think conversation tonight, and me going 5000 km away is a good thing. Even if the power is still out in Halifax!
Posted By: job

Re: Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 02:30 AM

I think it is wise that you and your h date for a while before he returns home. He's got a lot of hard work ahead of him and he needs to earn your trust. He will have to be transparent in all that he does. When he does return home, it will have to be a new marriage and the old one tossed out the window. You both are now different people because of what you both have experience during this time of separation. He still has a long ways to go. He has to fix himself...you will need to allow him to make his own mistakes and learn how to fix them. You can't rescue him...he will need to be accountable for all of his actions.

Dig deeper for patience as he will have 18-24 months of learning to live in his own skin and feel comfortable being back at home.

You've given him plenty to think about and hopefully, he will get his act together and make an appointment for IC while you are away.

Now is the time for you to look forward to your trip and recharge your battery. Travel safely.
Posted By: CanBird

Re: Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 10:16 AM

Wow Barb! Safe travels. Enjoy your trip, eat well & be merry.
Posted By: bttrfly

Re: Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 10:50 AM

well done Barb. Enjoy your trip and listen to Job, always. xoxoxo
Posted By: BarbH

Re: Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 02:50 PM

Thanks again all. And Job...truly the voice of wisdom. I had the feeling he wanted to come back, and when I did expanded search on those sites....they were only 1 or 2 visits. The stars aligned. Apparently "someone" told him to check out the Facebook dating app...so he did in Sept 6. Sept 7 he s at our friends cabin when a huge thunderstorm rolled in. He says he became very worried about what I would do if something went wrong at the house. Then he says he said to himself "what the he'll am I doing?". Left the cabin late at night to head back to town. I saw that on the tracker ( which had been left in for my benefit). Then I called the next day basically saying "I can't cope with this so we are strictly business partners". Boom.

He seems exhausted. Talk again about house, retirement etc. I just said "there time enough to talk about the house". And " when you feel safe and secure enough in our new relationship, go ahead and retire. ". He knows now what his financial picture is vs our financial picture. I said "we 'd date a bit and then invited him in a date to the Downton Abbey movie when it comes out. (One of our fav series). He rather fiercely said "yes and we will be going as husband and wife!"

Lots and lots of work to do.
But now we seem to be pulling in the same harness.

But for now I'm in the air heading for Halifax where my friends still don't have power. Candles and wine i guess! Still going to have fun.

Good luck to everyone. May your road always rise up to meet you. I will keep posting.
Posted By: DejaVu6

Re: Well, not classic DB'ing.. - 09/09/19 03:01 PM

Great update Barb. Stay the course. Be patient and donít rush anything. Hope your friendsí power comes back on soon. (((HUGS)))
Posted By: BarbH

After vacation update.. - 09/18/19 03:55 PM

Hi all of you who have been following/supporting me. Thought I'd pop in with an update:

Had a great vacation in Nova Scotia, despite power still being out for 3 days-we "camped" at my girlfriend's house. Saw beaches, museums, historical sites, vineyards, pubs, and just generally enjoyed ourselves.

Came home, H picked me up at airport. We were pretty good-a little strained. Unfortunately, I blew it later that night-he left his cell phone out, and saw me looking at it. Big fight he says he can't trust me, I bring up 15 yrs of lies. He says he's done, so do I. I go upstairs, calm down, come back down and quietly just said "I apologize for snooping. But if we are going to do this, I need you to help me heal". And went back to bed.

In morning-I flopped on his bed and started conversation. Frosty at first, but we ended up talking and laughing for about 45 minutes. I said something about counselling and he responded with "mine will be individual, I can get it through work". Excellent! He's always shut down counselling before-has rejected it out of hand. But I was very clear it's not negotiable.

We talked about our "scary things" with reconciliation. He felt the night before was a setback. I said "there will be glitches and hiccups-we will both make mistakes. what matters is how we handle them".

I went to town, he went to town with our dog. I came home, and had to head back in. Met him on the road heading home. He stopped, and we chatted. When I went to leave-I got a kiss! First in months! (we've been hugging)

Negatives-well, I'm done snooping! Still need to discuss the past 15 years-infidelity, etc. I'm sitting on this for now-other than saying "at some point we need to talk about it. I've forgiven, but I need help getting past it". Haven't asked for passwords etc. That too will come. He's very good about telling me where/what he's doing, and leaving his tracker on. (that's a positive.)

Positives: Still talking! He's home on his days off now, sister's place when at work, and it's much more comfortable. Hugs and kisses. Talk of counselling. Talk of future. Plans to watch our fav. tv show together Friday night. Plans to go to movie together. He's told his family and some people at work that we are working on reconciliation. (I'm especially pleased re at work, as that's where issues are). He says he hasn't talked to OW/EA in over a month. She's been unfriended from FB.

Plans for me: Still in IC. Started Tai chi last night-think I'm going to love it! House getting remortgage on next week-bills getting cleaned up. After that I think I will propose a once weekly "state of the union" talk where we can each have some time (1/2 hr? any thoughts? I'll put this on my list for therapist next week) to discuss issues, ask questions-infidelity, social media, what ever. Each of us can have some time, talk and then shelve it. My therapist has suggested that for now, I just focus on us having fun together-as we usually do, and wait for him to process and move forward, as he's generally a slow and deliberate processor. Practice patience.
Posted By: job

Re: After vacation update.. - 09/18/19 04:41 PM

Glad you had fun on your vacation even w/the electric off for a few days. You needed that time to recharge your battery.

I am also glad to see that things are starting to settle down a bit. I totally agree w/your therapist. Focus on having fun together, i.e., dating like you did in the beginning. Keep in mind, this is a new relationship and that means not falling back into old habits. Dig deeper for patience and it could take up to 18-24 months before he's finally settled into his own skin.

Don't rush the process...it will take as long as it takes for him to feel comfortable and actually open up to you.
Posted By: CanBird

Re: After vacation update.. - 09/19/19 09:58 AM

Welcome back Barb. Glad to hear the lines of communication have really opened up for you.

Continued success to you.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: After vacation update.. - 09/19/19 03:36 PM

Thanks Job and Canbird. I hope things continue to improve. I'm still having issues around dealing with my anxiety around relationship. I'm not sure he's really committed to working on it. Small things worry me even though they are probably illogical/ for example when I got back from vacation he's deleted his browsing history (embarrassed by what I found?) But hasn't erased anything since and has remained logged in. Still on facebook messenger at night but not with me. However I need to balance that with the other things that seem to be happening. And, I've decided to behave "as if" ..as if we are totally in track and I'm not worried. Trying to appreciate small moments and be upbeat, positive and continue with my gal.
Posted By: CanBird

Re: After vacation update.. - 09/20/19 01:14 PM

I'd react exactly the same! How can we not feel anxious? It's normal I'd say. "As if, as if.." and gal on gal! When is your next Tai Chi session? Do you still go to IC ?
Posted By: BarbH

Re: After vacation update.. - 09/21/19 01:37 AM

Thanks Canbird! Had coffee with Sister in law yesterday-I didn't ask, but she confirmed everything he's said re: reconciliation/the "what the h@ll am I doing" moment on the beach/and has talked about counselling as well. So I'm feeling much more reassured.

Tai Chi every Tuesday night, and yes, I'm still going to IC, but we're planning on a couple more weeks of weekly, then probably just a monthly check in depending how things are going. Her husband does weekend workshops and specializes in Goal oriented therapy (Hold me tight/Dr. Sue Johnson), so at some point....hopefully....

In the meantime-cautious forward progress. He even told his sister, it will be slow. I'm fine with slow, as long as it's progress.

It's been an illuminating time-I've learned how important friends and connections are, and will not lose them again. Also how important GAL is...will also not lose that again, nor my self-esteem.

Fingers crossed.

Posted By: BarbH

I think he's still online - 09/21/19 04:51 AM

Hi all-well, he's home, and some of his "warmth" has backtracked. He says "that night was a setback" the night I "snooped". I find that a little rich coming from the man that cheated 15 years ago, has not told me for 15 years, and almost cheated again. We were cuddling on the couch watching tv, and I said something about I need to know that you're not texting/messaging behind my back. All I got was silence. Sometimes no answer is an answer.

So, we are into the bank on Friday next to do the financials. As much as it kills me, if there's no progress on the counselling/transparency plan front, I will be asking him to move out. We will remain separated. I can't be the person doing all the heavy lifting here. I don't think he's back because he loves me, I think he's back for financial reasons/plan b reasons. I told him I need to hear "I'm sorry, I love you, and I want this to work.". I'm getting waffling. So I will lay low for a week, but I'm not feeling optimistic. I think he's cake-eating/plan B'ing, after a moment of weakness 3 weeks ago.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 10:42 AM

and he's deleted his ea from Facebook but they're still following each other on instagram. No more. Cake eating goes on. Push/pull goes on. I'm detaching again. Friendly until friday
Posted By: job

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 01:54 PM

I think it's a bit too soon for him to be moving back in. He needed to be living on his own and not at his sister's house. The man has to grow up before he can heal and become the man he should be. You may not get a true apology from him for a very long time. He may feel pressured to move back home because of the financials, etc.

I would suggest that you dig deeper for patience and do not be surprised if he leaves again. I'm sorry if I sound like a downer on this one, but he doesn't appear to be ready to do any of the heavy lifting to get his life back on track and work on a reconciliation.

I hope that I am wrong and If I am, I will be the first to apologize to you.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 03:08 PM

Job, I agree entirely. You aren't a downer, you're a realist and you're confirming what my instincts are telling me. He's done none of the heavy lifting I've asked him to do, and I've been very point blank about what I need from him to get this back on track. I'm afraid there will actually be no back on track, and I'm becoming more and more comfortable with the idea. In retrospect we are once again dancing the pursuer/distancer dance. I set a heavy boundary ("if you're online dating, we are a business relationship only"), he gets closer. Then I get closer, and he starts distancing. At least I recognize it this time.

I don't think he has the emotional capability to actually grow up.

He will leave again, because Friday, once we've sorted out the money issues, I will be asking him to leave. I don't care where he goes, just go. At that point, as I know I can handle the bills, I will go dark-one text every 2 weeks on his payday with any bills that he needs to chip in on. If he wants to tell people I've thrown him out and it's my fault, oh well.

It's so bizarre-that he tells people we are "working on a reconciliation", kisses me good-bye in the morning, calls me 'hon', he tells me everywhere he's going and what he's doing, is working around the house-BUT-the two things I've asked him for? No. That speaks volumes.

I'm sad, but I'm okay.
Posted By: Gerda

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 08:00 PM

Barb, to me you sound as unready as H to have him come back. I agree with Job; he may or may not be ready to do the work. To me it would be shocking if he was already ready, it has been a very short time since BD.

But I don't think that he will get ready under the conditions you are setting for his return.

You have so many conditions and you sound like you have not forgiven him at all. I am not passing judgement at all. I know we all post here to get a birds-eye view from other posters. Mine for you is that you have not forgiven him at all, you are reminding him of his mistake all the time in your words and you actions, and you are giving him a list of things he has to do to come back. If he is a broken man, as all MLCers are, this will make it impossible for him to return. He'll return, maybe, but the pressure will drive him back into the tunnel.

I am not saying you shouldn't have these conditions. That is your choice for your life. I am only saying that from the outside, based on your anger and your conditions, you do not seem to want him back.

I think that for your own self, for your own healing, you would need to forgive him. Maybe you can't right now. But that means not reminding him of his sin/mistake at all, except when you are both in a relationship of deep trust and he wants to talk about it. Forgiveness is a daily operation. You might have to work on it all the time in yourself, as the hurt and anger come in waves. Maybe you aren't there. I found it very hard and could only do it with constant prayer.

If I were in your shoes, and my H were saying those things to me and to other people, I would not necessarily think this was it, and all will now be well. But I would say it was a blessing that the words at least are out there. I would zip my lips, know in myself not to have any expectations, and be as open and kind as possible. I would continue not to initiate contact but I would respond openly to his. If I didn't want him home yet, I would say that I really looked forward to the day he would come home and I would like to date for a while and just enjoy each other's company without the pressure of a return home.

I can't think of any man that would respond well to the pressure you are applying -- and again, those may be your conditions, and that is fine. But certainly an MLCer, who is a broken, raw mess before, during and after the time away, will probably not respond well to that. If the affair stuff is your boundary, so be it, but you can have that boundary without constantly telling him about it. You can say, "Out of respect to our marriage, as much as I enjoy spending time with you, I can't do it when I know you are with other people. Take the time you need, but that's my limit." You can set your own time limit, he doesn't have to know it and feel the pressure of it. Let's say it's a month, if after a month you are done, you can tell him then that you can't talk to him because you know he has not been able to choose. But telling him he has a month, for example, and constantly reminding him of it seems to me like the most sure way to ensure he will not heal or come back.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 08:39 PM

Thank you Gerda,

I appreciate your point of view. The fact is he is at home, and when he asked how he could come home, my only condition was that he seeks IC, and during that IC discuss how he could help me regain trust in him. Yes, I do appreciate the words are out there. I do want him back, but not the old him, so it's his decision to make. Yes, I am angry, and I am trying to control it until it can be dealt with in a more positive manner. I have set the time limit in my mind-it was a month. He's been home for a month, and no counselling booked. Actually next week will be a month.
So, we will be talking at the end of the week. Depending on how that goes, he's in or he's out. It is that time. He's had 15 years to man up and deal. It's time.

I have forgiven the affair, but as I have said,I cannot yet forgive the 15 years of corrosion to our marriage brought on because he wouldn't deal with it-even given multiple opportunities. I don't even think any more that this is MLC-I think it's more WAS-triggered primarily by his guilt, and honestly, cowardice regarding dealing with the original PA. I've told him I don't want our old marriage back-in retrospect it was utter garbage. I'm in counselling, I'm working on my issues, but in this case, if he really wants to move forward, he has to make a move-counselling. Yes I'm stuck on that, because seriously, if this even is MLC, it probably started 15 years ago. Enough is enough.

My only condition for return is that he goes to individual counselling. So even though he's home, he's still one foot in and one foot out, and frankly after the levels of disrespect (refusing counselling for 15 years, texting EA/friends at work very cruelly while ignoring me while my mother was dying, bomb dropping while my mother was dying, and then blaming me for the marriage failing, blaming me for working overtime to pay bills after a year off work with cancer) I don't think IC is too much to ask. I have told him I appreciate him doing the things he's doing around the house, I appreciate that he has the tracker on and tells me where he's going, but if he wants to demonstrate he is truly wanting to reconcile, he needs to do the work.

If he's working towards that with a counsellor, I will be patient. Right now though, I feel that there's a certain component of cake-eating, plus the fact that I know him so well-when he thinks I'm angry, he always refuses to deal with the main issue, and instead tries to get back in my good graces by a sideways approach. He always thinks he can slither back in with a "nice guy" approach. I look upon what he's doing now as a sideways approach, but really, he needs to deal with his issues stemming back to 15 years ago.

Even the fact he and his old EA are following each other on instagram could be an oversight-he only deleted her from facebook a couple of weeks ago, and doesn't use instagram much.

That's it. It's one condition-seek help. For my own self respect, I simply can't roll over on this, I've rolled over on so much for so long. And yes, I think there does come a time when you have to protect your self respect. Deception is a deal breaker for me.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 09:49 PM

choices and consquences:

1. Do the counselling and stay home-work on the situation.

2. Don't do the counselling, move out ( and I will go dark-but he won't know this). Should he start counselling, I will reconsider.
Posted By: job

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 10:33 PM


You may need to explain to him what the "work is". Some of them think that if they do all of the husbandly things around the home, that is the "work". They do like to sweep things under the carpet. I would sit him down over a cup of coffee and have a conversation w/him to see what he thinks "the work" is. That will be the opener you will need to state what exactly "the work" entails. I would simply state to him that he is more than welcome to stay in the home and work on the marriage, but working on the marriage would include making an appointment and following up w/an IC on a weekly/monthly basis.

See what he has to say about this and if he doesn't think he can do it, he may very well suggest, on his own, moving out.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think he's still online - 09/21/19 11:27 PM

Job, sometimes I think you are a mind reader. That's exactly what I plan to do. For now, the "work" I expect is the IC and the transparency plan. I thought I'd been clear on this with him, but I will give it one more go.

I like your opener! I will approach it that way....I'm also planning on saying that I do see and appreciate the work he's been doing around the place-and that he's been keeping me informed of his movements and plans....that actually does help.

He just called after his bike ride and asked if he needed to pick up groceries and if I wanted to go up to the ranch (our other property-RV is up there) tonight. I declined. I have a coffee date in am, and I'm thinking what did he think re sleeping arrangements? We are for sure not sleeping together..

As you say re 'the work" his usual apology mode is to "do the things" so I do think this is what's happening. While I appreciate it, the fact is that "doing the things" isn't what I've asked him to do, or told him I need.

I am ready either way. (Not that it won't hurt).
Posted By: Gerda

Re: I think he's still online - 09/22/19 02:22 PM

I understand all the emotions you are going through. We know that there is nothing we can do to make them come back, it is their own journey. But I think we can do a lot to drive them further in the tunnel. I think from the POV of a MLCer, you are making it very clear that you do not accept him as he is. I would suggest reading Gordie's threads; he is a real model of how to have boundaries and zip the lips but still be open and not scare them away.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: I think he's still online - 09/22/19 04:48 PM

Hi Gerda, yes you're right I don't accept him as he is. I am hopeful that As he is isn't the finished product. As he is, there is the glimmer that I want him. I don't want the man who lied to me for 15 years and yet still manages to blame me for the failures. Particularly in the past 5 years i have literally done 90% of the heavy lifting and even that wasn't good enough. So no, I do not accept the petulant spoiled man child. I am hopeful that the responsible loving man i married is still there- I see more and more glimpses of him.

So he tells me he wants to reconcile. Well my questions now are how? We have so many issues to address that we can't do it on our own. My personal boundary is that I can't live with dishonesty. It's a deal breaker. Now that I know for how long and how dishonest he was, he needs to address it. I can't reconcile without honesty. He doesn't get a pass. He's had 15 years in which Hhes managed to bring us to this place. Yes I have my issues and responsibilities but I'm not the cheater/liar.

I may push him.back into the tunnel. He may step up and respond. He has a choice to make, and it's time to make one. Saying "I want to reconcile" doesn't magically make it happen.

I'm my mind, what's the worst that can happen? He leaves and we are truly done? We've been there already. I don't need him, I am fine. ( sad but fine), but even though I don't need him I want him and a good marriage back. We are already there-he says we were done 15 years ago, and he emotionally left fully 2 years ago, and is now weighing his options. I've had enough. We move forward together or i move forward alone. My dignity and self respect is not tied to him. I get to direct my life and if I decide not accept certain behaviours, well that's my choice to make with full awareness of what the consequences may be.

He needs to be aware of where I am in this, his choices are his to make, and he needs to be aware of the consequences.

I'm actually holding off on the counselling but after a month back together....the transparency talk is crucial. I would have liked to do it with a third party but that may not happen.

Job is right he did come back to soon and now I have to deal with that too. He thinks my kindness and forgiveness is endless and it's not. And yes I'm angry., I am trying to deal with that while we hopefully reconnect. But as I've said, I've done the vast majority of emotional work in our marriage and it's time for him to either step up or not. Grow up and become a man i can respect or not. I don't think establishing my boundary is unreasonable. It's mine to establish. his response is for him to decide.

If he can be transparent, and we can do counselling, I can wait. If he can't He can leave until either he can or we are done. He can say he wants to reconci!e all he wants. Prove it.
Posted By: BarbH

cautiously optimistic - 09/23/19 02:11 AM


He came home with firewood from the ranch (he was there overnight with family). Fixed the plugged sink, unloaded the firewood, started the fire for me, visited and chatted, had some dinner, it was very pleasant and comfortable all afternoon. He has just left for town-staying with his sister tonight as he's driving BIL to hospital for surgery in am. Kissed me goodbye, promises to text tonight.

So, I broached the subject of communication. I said "if we're trying to reconcile, we have things to talk about. I'm tired of just "ambushing" you when thoughts cross my mind, and I'm sure you have things to discuss with me". So-we've agreed on an hour a week "circle of trust" talk. Each of us gets 1/2 hr to bring up and discuss anything on our minds and lead the discussion. This is going to be difficult but I think if we talk first about establishing how we are going to do this (respectfully, honestly) and maybe have some kind of signal if it's just a little too much. First step to communication.

I will, over the course of a few weeks, bring up the cell phone/transparency issue. It's one of many. And you know, after all we've gone through, I'm okay with this taking time. When my mind starts bringing up issues, I can simply write it down and wait. And then prioritize which ones I actually really want to talk about, and hopefully get some answers. I need to know about the affair. I need to discuss the craziness of the facebook and text messages this summer. I'm even okay with asking him a question and letting him wait to answer it next time around. I also need to know what his issues have been with me, rather than just trying to guess. I do think he's motivated to do this, and if he's not, the truth will out soon enough. Again, I am ready to be on my own should it come to that.

Wish us luck.
Posted By: DnJ

Re: cautiously optimistic - 09/23/19 04:11 AM

Hello Barb

Your communication idea, the circle of trust, is interesting. I like your awareness of writing things down and prioritizing which to start with.

I totally understand your list you have so far, the things you need to know. I would like to extend to you a different view. In time those things that you need to know right now, become a lot less important. You really do not need to know those answers. Honest.

I see a lot of expectations of how you think this should go and should have to go. Expectations are a dangerous mix this early into this situation. You may well expect an answer, but H many not even know, at the moment, why he did what he did. Emotions are irrational, and it takes time to uncover the reasons/events that underpin them.

For what itís worth, your first priorities should be to let him talk. Let him discuss him. This whole situation is basically about him, not you. All his behaviours are due to whatever is going on within him. So, let him talk. Follow whatever lead he is willing to do. You need not forgo your questions; be patient they will keep. And you might just find they are not nearly as important as you feel they are.

You have a rare opportunity, a spouse who wishes to talk. Take it slow. H is like a timid squirrel, and will run if bombarded with too much. Donít worry the truth will come out - in time.

So a question, can you be strong enough and patient enough to allow him to walk his path at his pace? I think you can.

Best wishes.

Posted By: BarbH

Re: cautiously optimistic - 09/23/19 05:42 PM

thanks DNJ, and everyone....I read this last night and had to sleep on it.

I am working on my patience! I am just so frustrated. I've pulled out DR to read again-i think I've been so focused on DB'ing that when he came back-I'm trying to suddenly find a new game plan.

I will be sitting down later today and working through Step 2 of DR....And really, when I look back, 4 months ago we were not talking, and he was out of the house convinced he wanted a separation/divorce. So now, he is back in the house, has said he wants to work on reconciliation, has told family we are working on recon, is telling me everywhere he's going. He has also told me he wants to go slow, and not just jump back in. I need to honour this.

My difficulties, and I need help/suggestions on this!

1. When he said he wanted to come back, I said counselling was "non-negotiable". If I back down on this, then what?

2. I looked at his cell phone, he freaked out that i was invading his privacy, and he's backtracked somewhat-but is still here and hanging in. He swears he's done with EA, but I have a huge issue with trust at this point, as texting/messaging has played a huge role in this situation. I've said I "need him to help me heal" from this and the old PA (old to him, but new to me). When do I broach this again?

3. He's alluded to "my issues" but aside from the housework (a whole different topic!), I don't know what he expects.

"Circle of trust" is an old, old phrase we used to use when asking for the truth. He's agreed to talking without ambush.

So help! Today I plan on step 2-knowing what I want, and setting small goals.

Step 3 is "asking for what I want"....so if we do have a "discussion meeting" which he's said he could do, I think instead of asking about the PA/EA/ etc, I may just ask for those small goals, and leave it. I can put counselling on backburner for now, but not have it go away.

I'm going to need help with this.
Posted By: DnJ

Re: cautiously optimistic - 09/23/19 08:11 PM

Hello Barb

Yes this is a frustrating time.

Remember, you have the gift of time. Use it well.

Be patient. You cannot push this along. Do more of what works and less of what doesnít.

I most definitely support you writing down your goals. Share them if you like. I am interested in hearing what you think, feel, and believe. What are your loft goals? Those headings, the direction of your life. What are the smaller milestones? And think about the small steps that let you know you are moving in the right direction.

A big part of this for me is beliefs. Emotions can and will change, and thoughts will follow emotions pretty quickly. Beliefs, values, convictions - those are slow to change. Those are the compass we should follow. However, one needs to ensure they are happy with their deep values / beliefs. This is part of using time well. Do that inner work. Find, alter, and strengthen your values. If you are not please about something within yourself, this is a great time to fix it.

You told H that counselling was non-negotiable. That is ok, probably true, and a very good thing. So go.


Lead by example.

And with you demonstrating your willingness to attend individual counselling, you can suggest within the circle of trust that H attends his own as well. Not demand, suggest. You might just be surprised at the result. Keep expectation at zero and see what happens. No need to work out a strategy if H is willing to go.

The cell phone. Oh that is a big a big one, Isnít it? Lots of fear, doubts, and worry. You say you have an issue with trust. Not really - thereís no issue - you donít trust him. Plain and simple. Youíd like to trust him. To be able to trust him.

You asked for help, and I think goal setting should be forward looking and positive. A goal of yourís should be to trust H again. That is a lofty goal. Trust is easily broken and takes lots of time and a consistent effort by both parties to rebuild it.

Some small milestones and beliefs for you: Realize and believe that trust is possible. Believe that it is possible that you could trust H again. Realize this is a long process with lots of bumps along the way. Believe in the possibility. These are some small steps that are directly within your control, and a good place to start. The actual mechanics of rebuilding trust will require open sincere dialog between you and H. Be patient, H really isnít ready yet.

For right now, yes you did invade his privacy. You snooped on his phone and he freaked out. In the vein of ďdo more of what works and less of what doesnítĒ, you should stop looking on his phone without his permission or agreement of random inspections. That will come, however for now it is too soon.

Originally Posted by BarbH
I've said I "need him to help me heal" from this...

No. Nope. No.

H has enough of his own emotions, he is cranked up to eleven, he really cannot handle yourís as well. Be patient.

You do not need him to help you heal. You heal yourself.

My XW left me, left the kids, and moved in with OM, all on BD night. Me and the kids all healed without her, and without her ever apologizing, and without any meaningful involvement in any of our lives since that day.

You heal you. This is completely within your control. Donít ever lose sight of that fact. Your choices will define you and your growth.

During the circle of trust talks, apologize for looking at his phone. If he is emotional ok, go further and calmly explain why you looked. You want to be able to trust him again. You were hurt and just wanted confirmation of his promising that the EA and PA is over.

I know - apologize?!? Yep. For a while you are going to have to be the bigger person, the leader, the beacon, the lighthouse. Barb, move forward, focusing on you and what is right and working, not on what has happened or is wrong. You for sure donít want to sweep things under the carpet, just think about the timing is all.

His alluding to ďissuesĒ. Let him tell you the issues he sees. ďI am sorry you feel that wayĒ will be a good phrase to remember. smile

Own the issues that are valid - not quite accurate.

Whatever H says is valid - to him. It could be complete bunk, but to him it is not. Validate and listen to his emotions. Own whatever issues that are valid and true to you - and work on them.

There is a line between validating and being disrespected. H does not get to disrespect you. He stays on the correct side of that line.

It is really good that H has agreed to a discussion meeting. Keep it friendly. Keep your emotions in check, you can let them out later. See where he is going, today. Tomorrow, I can guarantee he will be heading somewhere different. He will flip and flop for a while. Just four months ago he was certain that the marriage was over and he wanted a divorce. Think small steps - really small steps.

You want to heal the marriage.

You heal you.

H heals him. (Give him a shinning example to follow)

Then work on M.

Youíve got lots of time.

Posted By: job

Re: cautiously optimistic - 09/23/19 10:18 PM


Please start a new thread and link the two threads together.
Posted By: BarbH

Re: cautiously optimistic - 09/24/19 03:05 PM

New thread

Now what# 3/cautious optimism
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