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Originally Posted by Pommy99
LH - is that the norm - that he will start to back away? Thanks for the heads-up. Hopefully I know enough by now not to go pursuing him if he does start to retreat.

People generally want what they perceive can't have. When he thought you were interested in another guy he had to have you back. At some point he is likely to have in essence "buyer's remorse". The phenomenon of buyer's remorse has been generally associated with the psychological theory of cognitive dissonance, a state of psychological discomfort when at least two elements of cognition are in opposition, and which motivates the person to appease it by changing how they think about the situation. Buyer's remorse is an example of post-decision dissonance, where a person is stressed by a made decision and seeks to decrease their discomfort. This may cause him to back peddle. At some point he will probably say now that I got her back is this what I really want going forward. You will likely have the same feelings. Probably after the honeymoon phase. Just be aware of it.

Originally Posted by Pommy99
I feel remarkably relaxed about taking things slowly, whereas before it would have been a case of getting him back home quickly before he changes his mind!

This is great!

Originally Posted by Pommy99
I really feel like I have completely taken the pressure and expectation off H and he is responding in a positive way. I'm not pushing conversations about him moving home, I'm not starting R discussions, I'm not asking to see him every day. Baby steps is the right pace right now. smile

This is great!

If you engage in a relationship with him again it should only be under the conditions that:

1) He sees you as someone of extremely high value
2) He views a relationship with you as something much better than a life with someone else or a life alone
3) He's willing to work to win you

Without those three things, he's going to walk again down the line, because he really doesn't have the motivation to work with you to change anything, your relationship will keep seeking the same equilibrium it has had because of how your personalities and issues come together.


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Pommy, congratulations on getting to this point. It shows that these situations can turnaround. However, you are also at at dangerous point because just letting him waltz right back will set you up for another BD at some point later.

So what are your requirements for his return? What work are you going to require for him to come back? IC? MC? Full transparency? As LH says go slow, methodically, and make sure that there are speed bumps in his way to make sure he is truly committed back to the MR, and not just temporarily falling back on Plan B.


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Just journalling.

LH, Steve - thanks for your comments - talking about being at a dangerous point did give me a lot of anxiety but also grounded me a little. It really is hard to know how to navigate this path to reconcilliation. When you are coming from a place of mistrust, resentment, and barely recognising the person you are now contemplating spending the rest of your life with, you find yourself doubting and questionning every comment and action, looking for the hidden motive. Ugh, no wonder everyone says R and then piecing is so hard.

In general, however, it's been a steady couple of weeks. We have spent maybe every other evening together, sometimes as a family, and sometimes just the two of us. We're still in lockdown, so getting out and about is limited, but we do have separate houses which gives us a bit of non-family space.

He is generally being very loving and attentive - I can definitely see a change from the person I disliked and barely recognised for the last year. We talk a lot about future plans (financial planning, leisure planning) but we have not talked about the M at all, or where we go from here. I did probe more into what has happened with the EAP and he said it was a friendship that just fizzled out. (He hasnt seen her for 4 months, doesnt have her in his phone, is no longer in any group chats with her.) I did ask him to tell me the truth about a couple of things that were bugging me about his meetups with her and he has denied any wrongdoing other than that it was an EA. He swears that there was never any PA or even a kiss, even though he has admitted in the past being confused about his feelings for her.

He has dropped a few hints about moving back home. It's very much assumed by both of us that he will move back, but we havent discussed when and I'm not pushing that conversation. I dont know if it's because I'm not sure (I think I am sure but a little scared) or because I dont want to relinquish all the control right now. I guess I'm a little fearful of things slipping back to the way they were, of being ignored, unloved, etc. He has told me that he feels completely different now to how he felt before he left, and that lockdown and being apart has been a valuable life lesson. I asked him what he had learnt and he said that he loves me, that he knows what's important to him in life, that the confusion he felt when he left was for a reason [he always said he didnt understand why he felt the need to leave knowing that he loved me and he now realises leaving was a mistake], that I have stood by him and remained loyal which means a huge amount to him.

I'm not sure if there is any more I could ask for right now, but I still feel really uneasy some days and I dont know why? I think it's maybe insecurity and this is the last thing I want him to see in me - I dont want to be clingy, needy, insecure - everything I was last year, so I'm trying to remain confident, give off good vibes about the R but not overly pursue him.


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this all sounds very positive, Pommy. Would he be open to MC? This stuff is SO HARD, expert input could be useful?

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Originally Posted by dillydaf
this all sounds very positive, Pommy. Would he be open to MC? This stuff is SO HARD, expert input could be useful?

Dilly, I have thought a lot about this but Im almost too frightened to ask him. Im not sure why. There are a number of possible reasons I guess:
1. Our last attempt at MC (led by him) was a disaster and put us both off MC
2. Im not sure any more what our issues are that need resolving.
3. In some ways MC seems too heavy right now. I think were both battle weary and could do with a break from R talk
4. Im burying my head in the sand or brushing everything under the carpet because its easy

Im wondering if we just enjoy this part of reconciliation and then once he moves back, we get some MC to support us thru the process?


M:49 H:49
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EA: Feb 2019-May 2020
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Originally Posted by Pommy99
Im wondering if we just enjoy this part of reconciliation and then once he moves back, we get some MC to support us thru the process?


I'm new and I haven't even read the entire thread, but this struck a chord for me. I have not yet had the opportunity to try, and have only read/heard Michele's words, but I think its extremely important to get to marriage COACHING as soon as possible, especially now when there is lots of hope with the rekindling. Get a marriage coach to teach you how to fan the flames just right. Not too fast, don't blow too hard. Build up nice strong coals with your fire, so that you don't flame out.

I've done the marriage counseling before... the one that leads to "therapy" and never quite gets back around to coaching and looking forward. Focus forward. Focus on what you will become.

Just my two cents and lots of hope that I get your opportunity some day.

Best wishes to you both.

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Hi Pommy,

I think it isn't a bad thing to let the two of you build up some positive memories together right now. I guess my only worry--- TOTALLY colored by my current sitch-- is that going too long without some professional help might also present its own difficulties, and once you get back into the rhythm of things it can be hard to get the motivation to go see someone if things feel fine. My guess is that he's probably motivated right now, since he wants to come home. Maybe you do wait until he comes home to start something, but maybe make it something you both agree is important before he moves in?

One thing I've been regretting (I know, no regrets, but here we are) is that there are some really positive things you can do with the help of an MC. It doesn't always have to be the horrible digging through the past or dealing with difficult emotions. It can be positive exercises designed to get you both thinking better about the other person. It can also be working on communication such that you can deal with difficult things more productively when they do come up (this has helped with my H even though everything else is going to $hit). If you are turned off of an MC, maybe getting a book like Gottman's 7 principles or something, reading through that, and going through the exercises. Or, assuming you still have questions or issues surrounding his EA, the Shirley Glass book to deal with it (depending on how much either of you consider it to have been infidelity). But there are exercises in those books or that an MC can lead you through to help develop more positivity around your MR, like spending time recalling your wedding and great memories together, or thinking about dreams that you both have for the future. Or even the Gottman book about the questions to fall in love (I can't remember the exact name) but a series of conversations designed to build intimacy. So maybe before you decide to dig into the hard stuff, maybe you can work productively on the positive stuff.

I don't know about you, but I was terrified to sweep everything under the rug. That resulted in me maybe pushing too hard to talk about the A and deal with my own stuff... but now I'm wishing that we spent some time really working on building intimacy and a future vision with a professional. Maybe that wouldn't have helped... I don't know. I have the big complication of the AP sitting out there that you don't have.

xx so happy for you, Pommy. I'm totally rooting for you two. I'll have a G&T and think of you tonight! Thanks for being there for me also-- it means a lot.


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Originally Posted by ShaneG


I'm new and I haven't even read the entire thread, but this struck a chord for me. I have not yet had the opportunity to try, and have only read/heard Michele's words, but I think its extremely important to get to marriage COACHING as soon as possible, especially now when there is lots of hope with the rekindling. Get a marriage coach to teach you how to fan the flames just right. Not too fast, don't blow too hard. Build up nice strong coals with your fire, so that you don't flame out.

I've done the marriage counseling before... the one that leads to "therapy" and never quite gets back around to coaching and looking forward. Focus forward. Focus on what you will become.

Just my two cents and lots of hope that I get your opportunity some day.

Best wishes to you both.

Shane, thank you...I think you and May are right- I need to look at as coaching rather than counselling , the latter of which seems to have negative connotations of dealing with bad things that have happened, pulling apart the past, and/or each other. I want to be looking forwards, at how we make sure we meet each others needs and be of real value to each other.

At the moment things are steady and stable and definitely going in the right direction, but I still have this feeling that it cant possibly be true...he cant really want to come back for me, there must be another reason. I guess this is the insecurity and mistrust that had embedded itself over the last 15 months, and along with that is the fear that it will happen again.


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Originally Posted by Pommy99
Originally Posted by ShaneG


I'm new and I haven't even read the entire thread, but this struck a chord for me. I have not yet had the opportunity to try, and have only read/heard Michele's words, but I think its extremely important to get to marriage COACHING as soon as possible, especially now when there is lots of hope with the rekindling. Get a marriage coach to teach you how to fan the flames just right. Not too fast, don't blow too hard. Build up nice strong coals with your fire, so that you don't flame out.

I've done the marriage counseling before... the one that leads to "therapy" and never quite gets back around to coaching and looking forward. Focus forward. Focus on what you will become.

Just my two cents and lots of hope that I get your opportunity some day.

Best wishes to you both.

Shane, thank you...I think you and May are right- I need to look at as coaching rather than counselling , the latter of which seems to have negative connotations of dealing with bad things that have happened, pulling apart the past, and/or each other. I want to be looking forwards, at how we make sure we meet each others needs and be of real value to each other.

At the moment things are steady and stable and definitely going in the right direction, but I still have this feeling that it cant possibly be true...he cant really want to come back for me, there must be another reason. I guess this is the insecurity and mistrust that had embedded itself over the last 15 months, and along with that is the fear that it will happen again.


I agree 100% with what Shane and May said, and I very much appreciate the way Shane put that...with a focus on the future rather than the past. The "coaching" vs "counseling" thing sounds like semantics, but I really think there's something there...I've battled a lot with whether the counseling arrangement in my sitch is really doing much good, and whether a focus on "coaching" with someone else, if we ever get to reconciliation, might be a better path.

As for the battle about trusting stability, I know exactly how that feels, even though my H and I are not as far along as you are, and might never make it to a moment of reconciliation. I struggle a lot right now with whether I'll be able to progress past the insecurity issues I now have, especially given that I've always struggled with depending on someone (in the direction of depending and trusting them, rather than too much trust). I suppose everyone in this situation has to get to a point of acceptance with that fear, because I don't think the fear will truly go away anytime soon. After all, the fear is rational. As the LBS, our WAS did, after all, walk away.

Last edited by Beth1112; 06/21/20 01:55 PM.

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Originally Posted by may22

I don't know about you, but I was terrified to sweep everything under the rug. That resulted in me maybe pushing too hard to talk about the A and deal with my own stuff... but now I'm wishing that we spent some time really working on building intimacy and a future vision with a professional. Maybe that wouldn't have helped... I don't know. I have the big complication of the AP sitting out there that you don't have.

xx so happy for you, Pommy. I'm totally rooting for you two. I'll have a G&T and think of you tonight! Thanks for being there for me also-- it means a lot.
hi May, Im worried we are in some kind of honeymoon phase and that the bubble will burst. I cant tell the difference between brushing things under the carpet and accepting that whats hes told me might be as much as Ill ever know, and moving on. Of course what hes told me might be the truth and everything else (e.g me thinking there mustve been some physical interactions at some point) is all in my head. I feel like I want to ask the same questions over and over until I get an answer where I can say I knew it and I feel like not getting the answers I want is me brushing it under the carpet ( or perhaps letting him get away with never having to divulge more). Im not sure if that makes sense, but I feel it is very destructive for both me and the relationship if I cant let go of those thoughts and doubts. I dont know how to deal with it.

Im feeling very hurt today about the fact he thought he was in love with someone else, and that for years Ive felt like Ive had to fight for his love and affection, and yet it was seemingly so easy for him dish it out to someone else..

Thanks for being here May. It means a lot to me too x

Originally Posted by beth1112
As for the battle about trusting stability, I know exactly how that feels, even though my H and I are not as far along as you are, and might never make it to a moment of reconciliation. I struggle a lot right now with whether I'll be able to progress past the insecurity issues I now have, especially given that I've always struggled with depending on someone (in the direction of depending and trusting them, rather than too much trust). I suppose everyone in this situation has to get to a point of acceptance with that fear, because I don't think the fear will truly go away anytime soon. After all, the fear is rational. As the LBS, our WAS did, after all, walk away.
I think this is where I am at Beth...struggling to discard the fears because as you say, they are completely rational. I think I need to accept the fears and instead rationalise the behaviours/issues that led up to the EA and work through those with H


M:49 H:49
T:20 M:18
D:16 D:14

EA: Feb 2019-May 2020
Separated: Mar-early Aug 2020
H asked to reconcile: Jun 2020
EA relapse: Oct/Nov 2020
Recon #2: since Nov 2020
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