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#2895203 05/18/20 02:09 AM
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About two months ago, I discovered that my wife was having an affair after she missed our dinner plans by about 8 hours for no good reason. I'd had that feeling that something was wrong for several weeks or maybe a few months. It's hard to remember exactly when it started. When she came home, I told her that I knew exactly where she was and what she was doing. I really didn't know for sure. I was just pretty certain. After an initial flurry of denials, she admitted the truth and locked herself in the guest room for the night.

Early the next morning, she finally came to bed and began apologizing profusely. I simply told her that she needed to pick one of us and that the one she didn't pick would no longer be a part of her life. And I left it at that. Now, I'll admit that I definitely want to save my marriage and I drew a firm line because I thought she'd pick me. We've been together for 20 years. Until rather recently, we had a good marriage and we have very happy children. And she'd never stopped professing her love and dedication to me even during the midst of all this.

For about a week, she said and did all of the right things. She said a lot of nice things about me and the strength of our marriage before all this happened. But after that first week, she started to pull away from me and then she told me that her feelings had changed and we'd lost that spark. Three days later, she picked him. I told her that I'd prefer to stay married, but that I didn't want her to stay if she didn't love me like that any more. Then, I told her that she should move in with him and that I would be staying in the house. Of course, I still wanted to save my marriage, but I figured that this madness would pass if I just held the line.

Four days later, she left for her mother's house. Initially, we were still talking on the phone and texting like we always had. But I left it to her to initiate the calls and the texts. That continued on for another six days and then it was radio silence. I went through the first few days of no contact without too much of a problem. I was confident that I could outlast her. However, that was misplaced confidence. About a week in, I broken down and called. When she answered the phone, I asked if she wanted to talk and she responded with an ice cold no. There's been minimal contact since that time.

Then, she returned from her mother's house and moved in with the other man. Within days of returning, she raised the issue of divorce and told me what her preferences were for splitting time with the children and dividing the assets. I rejected her preferences, told her that I would only agree to share time with the children equally and that I would be keeping the house. I also reminded her that I did not want to be part of one another's life any longer. This did not go over well at all. She even went so far as to tell me that it was fair to just discard her like that after 20 years.

After eight weeks, it seems that all I have done is encourage her to rush headlong into her new whirlwind romance with the other man (who no doubt has been whispering in her ear and pushing her all along). That was certainly not my intent, but the time to change course seems to have long since passed and it seems like any window of opportunity has long since closed. And if I'm going to go down in flames, this is exactly how I intend to go down.

To make matters worse though, since she moved out, my emotions have begun to run rampant whenever I go to sleep. I manage to keep myself busy all day and to focus on the things I can control and the problems I can solve. But I keep waking up early in the morning after a distressing dream about my wife and I cannot shake it off until 15 to 20 minutes after I get up.

At this point, it looks like my marriage is dead and it seems like the only thing left to do is let go and move on. Probably should have reached out for advice somewhere along the line sooner than this, but as we all know decisive men don't ask for directions until after they've gotten lost and wrecked the car in a ditch.

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Welcome! I am pasting in Cadet's Welcome posting. Please read all of the links as they have a lot of excellent info.

Welcome to the board

Sorry you are here but you will meet some wonderful people here and get some great advice.

Yes first thing you should do is be sure to read the Divorce Remedy (DR) book by MWD
http://www.mcssl.com/store/mwdtc2014/
http://divorcebusting.com/sample_book_chapters.htm

and Michele's articles
http://www.divorcebusting.com/articles.htm

You may be on moderation now, post in small frequent replies and stay on this thread until you reach 100 posts
(for your thread, you can also post on other peoples threads to give support).
Especially on this Newcomers forum, where the posting activity is very active,
and your posts can quickly fall to the bottom of the page or even several pages down.
Keep journaling and asking questions - people will come!
Most important - POST!

Get out and Get a Life (GAL).

DETACH.

Believe none of what he or she says and half of what he/she does.

Have NO EXPECTATIONS.

Take care of yourself, breathe, eat, sleep, exercise.

Take the parts of this advice that you need and don't worry if I have repeated something that you have already done.

Here are a few links to threads that will help you immensely:

I would start with Sandi's Rules
A list of dos and don'ts for the LBS (left behind spouse)
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2553072#Post2553072

Going Dark
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=50956#Post5095

Detachment thread
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2538414#Post2538414

Validation Cheat Sheet: Techniques and tips on how to validate (showing your walk away spouse (WAS) that you recognize and accept his or her opinions as valid, even if you do not agree with them)
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2457566#Post2457566

Boundaries Cheat Sheet
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2536096#Post2536096

Abbreviations
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2553153#Post2553153

For Newcomer LBH with a Wayward Wife by sandi2
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2545554#Post2545554

Resource thread
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forum...ain=57819&Number=2578224#Post2578224

Stages of the LBS
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=1964990&page=1

Validation
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=191764#Post191764

Pursuit and Distance
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2483574#Post2483574

The Lighthouse Story
http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2484619#Post2484619

Your H or W is giving you a GIFT.
THE GIFT OF TIME.
USE it wisely.

Knowledge is Power - Sir Francis Bacon

Me-66, D33,S32


Sit quietly, the answers will reveal themselves when you least expect them to.
The past is gone, the present is a gift and you need to focus on today, allow the future to reveal itself when it is ready.
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Originally Posted by Spiral
About two months ago, I discovered that my wife was having an affair after she missed our dinner plans by about 8 hours for no good reason. I'd had that feeling that something was wrong for several weeks or maybe a few months. It's hard to remember exactly when it started. When she came home, I told her that I knew exactly where she was and what she was doing. I really didn't know for sure. I was just pretty certain. After an initial flurry of denials, she admitted the truth and locked herself in the guest room for the night.

Early the next morning, she finally came to bed and began apologizing profusely. I simply told her that she needed to pick one of us and that the one she didn't pick would no longer be a part of her life. And I left it at that. Now, I'll admit that I definitely want to save my marriage and I drew a firm line because I thought she'd pick me. We've been together for 20 years. Until rather recently, we had a good marriage and we have very happy children. And she'd never stopped professing her love and dedication to me even during the midst of all this.

For about a week, she said and did all of the right things. She said a lot of nice things about me and the strength of our marriage before all this happened. But after that first week, she started to pull away from me and then she told me that her feelings had changed and we'd lost that spark. Three days later, she picked him. I told her that I'd prefer to stay married, but that I didn't want her to stay if she didn't love me like that any more. Then, I told her that she should move in with him and that I would be staying in the house. Of course, I still wanted to save my marriage, but I figured that this madness would pass if I just held the line.

Four days later, she left for her mother's house. Initially, we were still talking on the phone and texting like we always had. But I left it to her to initiate the calls and the texts. That continued on for another six days and then it was radio silence. I went through the first few days of no contact without too much of a problem. I was confident that I could outlast her. However, that was misplaced confidence. About a week in, I broken down and called. When she answered the phone, I asked if she wanted to talk and she responded with an ice cold no. There's been minimal contact since that time.

Then, she returned from her mother's house and moved in with the other man. Within days of returning, she raised the issue of divorce and told me what her preferences were for splitting time with the children and dividing the assets. I rejected her preferences, told her that I would only agree to share time with the children equally and that I would be keeping the house. I also reminded her that I did not want to be part of one another's life any longer. This did not go over well at all. She even went so far as to tell me that it was fair to just discard her like that after 20 years.

After eight weeks, it seems that all I have done is encourage her to rush headlong into her new whirlwind romance with the other man (who no doubt has been whispering in her ear and pushing her all along). That was certainly not my intent, but the time to change course seems to have long since passed and it seems like any window of opportunity has long since closed. And if I'm going to go down in flames, this is exactly how I intend to go down.

To make matters worse though, since she moved out, my emotions have begun to run rampant whenever I go to sleep. I manage to keep myself busy all day and to focus on the things I can control and the problems I can solve. But I keep waking up early in the morning after a distressing dream about my wife and I cannot shake it off until 15 to 20 minutes after I get up.

At this point, it looks like my marriage is dead and it seems like the only thing left to do is let go and move on. Probably should have reached out for advice somewhere along the line sooner than this, but as we all know decisive men don't ask for directions until after they've gotten lost and wrecked the car in a ditch.


Spiral, sorry man. I know this is difficult. I am not sure you have made many mistakes here. Most of your actions above were the right actions. Breaking no contact was the lone exception, but you recognize that now. I know it is tough. PAs are like an addiction. It sounds like when you confronted her she was remorseful and tried to end it and stay in the marriage. But then the addiction took back grip and sucked her in. Many wayward wives try to have their cake and eat it too. I think you did the right thing from a respect standpoint by making her choose. We see a lot of situations here and it is a darned if you do, darned if you don't. If you let them stay in both places, they will linger there, and cake eat. This is very damaging from a respect standpoint as the more tolerant to an affair a LBH is, the less respect a WW will have for him. If you force them to choose, then that means you can command a bit of respect, but it also means you may not be their choice.

Given the two options, I think the prospects for Ring down the line is heightened by the second option, regardless of their initial choice. I disagree with your assessment that there is no hope. Rs started in deceptions and lies have a very low chance of long-term survival. Her and the OM can never really trust each other because if they will cheat with you they will cheat on you. So this new R she has started with OM will likely come to an end at some point, either by her doing or his. Likely she will come crawling back to you. I think that is why she reacted poorly to you "discarding" her after 20 years. She wants you squarely in place as Plan B.

Regardless of if she ever comes back or not, you best way forward is still to move on. Being stuck in place, any place, is never healthy. You should be moving forward no matter what! If she comes to her senses in time and comes back while you are still willing to take her back, then you will have a choice to make. Until then you should be moving on and upward. Likely by time she comes around to her senses you will be past it and tell her to kick rocks.

Be proud you stuck up for yourself and commanded respect. You didn't win the girl, but you won her respect. You pretty much told her "Heck no, I will not sit by and allow you to keep me on the back-burner while you run around with an OM. And while there is sadness and pain at her choice, hold your head high that you stuck to your guns. So many LBSs allow their WW to walk all over them while openly cheating with an OM unabashedly. Personally, I'd prefer what you did to that any day of the week!

So yes, you are in pain. You are having the dreams and trouble sleeping. We've all gone through similar. All I can tell you is to give it time. Continue to work on yourself. Keep yourself busy like you are doing. Maybe look into IC to sort out everything. And keep moving forward.

Last edited by Steve85; 05/18/20 02:17 PM.

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Originally Posted by Spiral
About two months ago, I discovered that my wife was having an affair after she missed our dinner plans by about 8 hours for no good reason.

I am really sorry to hear that my friend but you came to the right place.

Originally Posted by Spiral
I'd had that feeling that something was wrong for several weeks or maybe a few months. Early the next morning, she finally came to bed and began apologizing profusely. I simply told her that she needed to pick one of us and that the one she didn't pick would no longer be a part of her life. And I left it at that. Now, I'll admit that I definitely want to save my marriage and I drew a firm line because I thought she'd pick me. We've been together for 20 years. Until rather recently, we had a good marriage and we have very happy children. And she'd never stopped professing her love and dedication to me even during the midst of all this.

It is common for the WWs to flip flop in the beginning. She is being ruled by her emotions.

Originally Posted by Spiral
For about a week, she said and did all of the right things. She said a lot of nice things about me and the strength of our marriage before all this happened. But after that first week, she started to pull away from me and then she told me that her feelings had changed and we'd lost that spark. Three days later, she picked him.

This is actually predictable. She is choosing the shiny new sports car compared to the old reliable family truckster.

Originally Posted by Spiral
I told her that I'd prefer to stay married, but that I didn't want her to stay if she didn't love me like that any more. Then, I told her that she should move in with him and that I would be staying in the house.

This was a very good statement and uncommon for newbies to handle it with strength.

Originally Posted by Spiral
Four days later, she left for her mother's house. Initially, we were still talking on the phone and texting like we always had. But I left it to her to initiate the calls and the texts. That continued on for another six days and then it was radio silence. I went through the first few days of no contact without too much of a problem. I was confident that I could outlast her. However, that was misplaced confidence. About a week in, I broken down and called. When she answered the phone, I asked if she wanted to talk and she responded with an ice cold no. There's been minimal contact since that time.

Very predictable response and don't beat yourself up over it.

Originally Posted by Spiral
I rejected her preferences, told her that I would only agree to share time with the children equally and that I would be keeping the house. I also reminded her that I did not want to be part of one another's life any longer. This did not go over well at all. She even went so far as to tell me that it was fair to just discard her like that after 20 years.
Another great response by you! You are going to be a good student of DB. Of course she wants her cake and eat it too. More on that later.

Originally Posted by Spiral
After eight weeks, it seems that all I have done is encourage her to rush headlong into her new whirlwind romance with the other man (who no doubt has been whispering in her ear and pushing her all along). That was certainly not my intent, but the time to change course seems to have long since passed and it seems like any window of opportunity has long since closed. And if I'm going to go down in flames, this is exactly how I intend to go down.
Again, you did the right thing. You want the affair to burnout which it most likely will in time.

Originally Posted by Spiral
To make matters worse though, since she moved out, my emotions have begun to run rampant whenever I go to sleep. I manage to keep myself busy all day and to focus on the things I can control and the problems I can solve. But I keep waking up early in the morning after a distressing dream about my wife and I cannot shake it off until 15 to 20 minutes after I get up.

This is all very normal and will subside in time.

Originally Posted by Spiral
At this point, it looks like my marriage is dead and it seems like the only thing left to do is let go and move on. Probably should have reached out for advice somewhere along the line sooner than this, but as we all know decisive men don't ask for directions until after they've gotten lost and wrecked the car in a ditch.

Think of this as a marathon and the gun just went off. You have many miles to run and there will be ups and downs in the process. You life as you know it will never be the same but you will come out of this stronger. I am very hopeful that you have a chance to bust this divorce.

Post often and good luck!

Last edited by LH19; 05/18/20 02:22 PM.

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Spiral -

I rarely if ever post on anyone else's thread b/c I am new and have no idea how to help anyone. But, I do read alot of ppl's posts and have to say how amazed I am at how well you, in particular, have handled all this! I mean, I just wish I had the same backbone you had throughout all of this. Is this a guy thing that they can do the detaching thing so well? Anyway.

To me it sounds like your DB'ing like a pro. Hang in there b/c I know regardless, this is just soul crushing.

Last edited by MistySea; 05/19/20 05:00 PM.

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Misty,

I don't think it was backbone and I'm definitely not detached in any way. In fact, detaching is my biggest weakness. The situation simply called for immediate and decisive action. I wanted to save my marriage, to keep my family intact, and to stay in my own home. My best chance at doing that was for her to decide to end her affair and making that decision before any further bonding took place. I have no doubt that forcing her to choose at that moment was the highest percentage chance of making those things happen. When your spouse is having an affair, your relationship with your spouse is going downhill and your emotional connection is rapidly disappearing. Your only hope of getting them back is for them to chose you over the OM or OW and you want them to make that choice as soon as possible before the OM or OW gets a hold of them. When you think about it that way, there's no downside to an ultimatum and I bet there are a whole lot of ultimatums made. After all, like me, there are many people who naturally turn to such tactics in times of crisis.

The only difficulty comes in following through on the ultimatum if they chose the other person. But you simply cannot back down and preserve your dignity. That's why, I held firm. Also, I figure forcing her to move in with OM before she's ready is to move out is much better than holding on until she is ready to move out. For most of us, we have absolutely nothing to more to lose.

In doing what I did, I avoided a lot of the pain other people are going through. She didn't tell me she wanted a divorce. She didn't tell me that the affair was all my fault. She didn't tell me I was a terrible husband. She apologized to me. She told me what a great husband I had been and thanked me for treating her so well. After she decided that she couldn't let go of the OM and needed to see where that led, I stopped asking her about "us" and told her to discuss OM or "us" with me. We both know it will only hurt my feelings.

As for DB'ing, the strategy is pretty easy to implement when your spouse has started living with the OM and pulled away. I don't have anything to do other than nothing.

Spiral

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Interesting day. She's begun hanging around the house a bit more and sure is taking her sweet time moving her things out. But the kids are here most of the time, so that's understandable. And of course, I will not pick them up or drop them off at her place. So the exchanges always happen here.

She did the dishes and the laundry this morning. Don't know what that means, but I'm not going to acknowledge it or encourage it. Instead, I'm making sure that the laundry is done and that all of the dishes are clean every night before I go to bed. I'm also going to make sure I don't oversleep again like I did this morning.

She's even started texting me a bit. I responded to two texts asking how our children were doing in recent days and that's it. She also texted me that she was thinking of me and sent a heart emoji. The irony of her texting me that from his place was not lost on me. I'm sure she wanted me to text back that I was thinking of her too. I did not even bother to look at the phone for several hours. Tonight before she left with the children, she made sure my daughter gave me my phone. I had her put it on the counter, where my daughter will find it waiting when she comes home tomorrow morning.

Nevertheless, it's full stem ahead on feathering her new nest, so none of these inconsistent signs mean anything. However, she was upset this morning and was having a bad day. I don't know why. I did not ask. But I am wondering, so I'll need to continue working on my detachment. I think I still have an extremely bad case of attachment.

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Originally Posted by Spiral
I don't think it was backbone and I'm definitely not detached in any way. In fact, detaching is my biggest weakness. The situation simply called for immediate and decisive action.

It takes a really long time to detach. Months if not years.
Originally Posted by Spiral
The only difficulty comes in following through on the ultimatum if they chose the other person. But you simply cannot back down and preserve your dignity. That's why, I held firm.

Good job holding firm. We would have preferred a boundary over the ultimatum but you did well. I will post about boundaries below.
Originally Posted by Spiral
She apologized to me. She told me what a great husband I had been and thanked me for treating her so well. After she decided that she couldn't let go of the OM and needed to see where that led, I stopped asking her about "us" and told her not to discuss OM or "us" with me. We both know it will only hurt my feelings.

Great job setting a boundary about discussing OM. Be prepared to enforce it.
Originally Posted by Spiral
As for DB'ing, the strategy is pretty easy to implement when your spouse has started living with the OM and pulled away. I don't have anything to do other than nothing.

You have no idea how hard it is for people to implement.
Originally Posted by Spiral
And of course, I will not pick them up or drop them off at her place. So the exchanges always happen here.

Good!
Originally Posted by Spiral
She's even started texting me a bit. I responded to two texts asking how our children were doing in recent days and that's it. She also texted me that she was thinking of me and sent a heart emoji. The irony of her texting me that from his place was not lost on me. I'm sure she wanted me to text back that I was thinking of her too. I did not even bother to look at the phone for several hours. Tonight before she left with the children, she made sure my daughter gave me my phone. I had her put it on the counter, where my daughter will find it waiting when she comes home tomorrow morning.

Do not respond to anything that doesn't have to do with the kids. This is what we call temp checking. Is he still plan B?
Originally Posted by Spiral
Nevertheless, it's full stem ahead on feathering her new nest, so none of these inconsistent signs mean anything.

You are correct. It does not.
Originally Posted by Spiral
However, she was upset this morning and was having a bad day. I don't know why. I did not ask. But I am wondering, so I'll need to continue working on my detachment. I think I still have an extremely bad case of attachment.

Likely guilt. Not remorse. Know the difference

Dude you are doing great. I like your chances if you can keep it up!

Think about boundaries like this:

Boundaries are not about controlling the other person, because boundaries are about drawing "circles" around *you* and determining what you will and won't allow inside that circle.

Your wayward wife can do whatever she wants OUTSIDE that circle. You are not telling her what to do.

But you will only let into that circle people who treat you with respect.

She's free to go on treating you with disrespect, but you won't know about it because she'll be outside your circle. She's free to go on and draw her own boundaries of no expectations and no responsibilities, outside your circle.

She can do WHATEVER she wants. She's a free person, free to make WHATEVER choices she wants.

BUT SO ARE YOU, and you are free to choose who to allow within your circle.

That's all. Not about trying to control her at all. Tell her she's totally free. She has the WHOLE WORLD, outside your circle, to go and do whatever she wants.

If she's saying you have to let her into your circle no matter what, then THAT is about HER controlling YOU.


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Spiral, as the others said you seem to have naturally grasped DB'ing even before finding the book, so well done! I want to share a story with you just so you know that while things seem bleak right now, there IS still reason to have hope. A good friend of mine's wife left him and immediately moved in with an OM. I'll spare you the details but it was just like your story and so many others here. Wasn't happy, had to move on, blah blah. They actually owned a business together. They sold it and split the proceeds. Sold the house and split that as well. He did not talk to her for 2 years afterwards. Zero contact (they both had kids, but not together). Then she started messaging him, just "hey how are you" stuff. They met for coffee. Then lunch. Then a movie. Basically they started the whole dating ritual all over again. They've been back together for 3 or 4 years now and are happier than ever. What she went through had everything to do with her internal struggles and little to do with him. She had to go through all that to realize that what she left behind was the man she wanted all along.

Originally Posted by Spiral
She did the dishes and the laundry this morning. Don't know what that means, but I'm not going to acknowledge it or encourage it.


She's trying to keep her foot in the door, keep you on as Plan B. She doesn't know if OM will work out, so she wants to keep her options open. Not acknowledging or encouraging it is the perfect response. No positive OR negative reaction, just no reaction.

Quote
She's even started texting me a bit. I responded to two texts asking how our children were doing in recent days and that's it. She also texted me that she was thinking of me and sent a heart emoji. The irony of her texting me that from his place was not lost on me. I'm sure she wanted me to text back that I was thinking of her too. I did not even bother to look at the phone for several hours.


Good good good. My buddy came by it naturally just like you, he didn't pursue or anything, just let her do what she was going to do.

Quote
Nevertheless, it's full stem ahead on feathering her new nest, so none of these inconsistent signs mean anything.


Exactly right.

Quote
I think I still have an extremely bad case of attachment.


Of course you do, that's normal and natural. But you're not acting on it, and that's the important part. Keep it up!


Me: 60 w/ S18, D24, D27

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Spiral, what you've done is very close to what we would recommend to maximize your chances of reconciliation--not accepting sharing her, or friendship, or subpar custody. No contact.

You're in a world of hurt, but the strength is obvious in your self-esteem to do these things. It bodes well for your chances of reconciliation 3-12 months from now if/when things fizzle out with the OM.

By then, of course, you may have already moved on. If you're even open to another try with your wife, you'd require her to do trust-building and other consistent self-work to avoid repeating the past.



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