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Good Morning E

I’m glad your week away was relaxing. The truly relaxed state is quite rejuvenating.

Originally Posted by Elbereth
DnJ, you say wait a year to date. I don't disagree. But if we are separated a year and the divorce drags out a year, etc, etc, who wants to wait that long? I certainly don't want that. I do agree that you shouldn't until you are ready, and I think that should be the guide. You have to commit to yourself to spend the time on the work and on being happy alone. If you have done that and feel you are ready then you could be ready. I do feel that I will also find some healing in my next relationships too. Avoiding them isn't the answer...doing the work on yourself I think is. So I plan to do that first, and I hope I am already doing that. But I am not going to stop meeting people if it comes up and an interesting option comes around... That's just me.

I get it. Who wants to wait a year or two or four. And that is kind of the point.

However, I didn’t say wait a year to date. I said, do not date for at least a year post divorce. That is not waiting around for the timer to expire then go dating. Life is meant to live.

I absolutely agree that one should not date until they are ready. That is actual beyond when the feel ready. It takes time to heal and get to the place where you know and believe it!

Yes, your next relationship will help with healing. And that next relationship is a most interesting one. One you’ve been within for a long time. That person is you.

Past the limbo, through the PTSD, codependency, and such, is a different landscape. Find the new world, breathe the fresh free air, for you are so very worth the effort.

By the way, there is no one way fits all. No “the right way” through all of this. You know your situation best. I’m just passing on some of my views and values. They may resonate within you or not. They may fit or not. It still is, and always has been, your choice. And I support you.

D


Now: Me54 XW50 S24 S23 S21 D19

Oct 8/17-BD, Moves in w/OM, Leaves Kids
Me49 W46 S20 S19 S16 D15
M26 T29
Dec 9/17-Legal Separation
Oct 3/18-W Files
Apr 6/19-Divorced

Love the Sinner, Forgive the Sin.
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Hello DnJ,

As always, I love your messages. Even if I don't agree with everything 100%, the guidance is also so thoughtful, wise, gentle and logical.

Originally Posted by DnJ
Past the limbo, through the PTSD, codependency, and such, is a different landscape. Find the new world, breathe the fresh free air, for you are so very worth the effort.

I think we are both in total agreement there. The point I was trying to make is that the work needs to happen first within yourself. The timeline isn't what matters as importantly.

And I support you back!

xo
El


Me 51, H 55
T10 M7, 2nd MR for both
2 Step Sons (18 and 20)
BD: Fall 2020
AP for at least 6 mos prior and still ongoing...
Divorce Started: Spring 2021


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Well, my STBXH has moved into a temporary place and his AP is with him. And our older son is staying with him (and her) now. As a step-parent, STBXH did not disclose his affair and our divorce together as we originally agreed. So I have no real idea of what he said to the boys. When I took my time to talk to them about it, all I could do was stress my side of the story (that I love them and plan to go nowhere and that I didn't want this or know about the AP until just before they were told).

I believe he also had our younger son stay with 'them' when he was staying in a local AirBnB and I suspect that she was there as well. We are not even divorced and he's with his other woman, and I really don't know what affect it is having on the boys. They love me, but I have never felt they confide in me like they do their bio parents. So, I'm worried a bit what impact his behavior will have on them and how they view relationships. Especially because they also are aware of their mother's infidelity and that it was why their father divorced her.

On another note, nothing has happened on the divorce process. He served me months ago...and yet we have not received any potential settlement proposal. My lawyer wanted STBXH to provide the first offer, but if it's going to take forever, then that isn't so good. I mean, we live in a 50/50 state, so his living and supporting this other woman and household is still affecting my portion of the estate. Should I push to move things along? Is it bad to give your proposal first? Especially knowing that my lawyer wants to do discovery as H has already taken and hidden assets?

The other thing that really bugs me is that STBXH is not coming back to down to finalize moving the rest of the stuff (mostly his) to our storage unit before the house goes on the market. Instead, he's sending our oldest to do it with hired help. I feel like he's just abandoned everything and left the burden on me and our son. He also pulled in our youngest son to do a lot during his final summer before college. Really so thoughtless.

El

Last edited by Elbereth; 08/26/21 09:08 PM.

Me 51, H 55
T10 M7, 2nd MR for both
2 Step Sons (18 and 20)
BD: Fall 2020
AP for at least 6 mos prior and still ongoing...
Divorce Started: Spring 2021


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Hi El,

Do both S'es sometimes still stay with you, or are they with their Dad and birth mom week/week?

Is this temporary place far from where you currently live? Wasn't is his intention to move far away?

What will happen to the sons then if this is the case?


Me (43) H (42)
M:14 T:18, S17, S14 & S14
4/19 BD1 ILYB & OW1 til 2/20
8/20 Moves abroad for work
12/20 Possible new OW2,wants divorce(no action)
09/21 D in progress (Me)
10/21 Start of H's awakening
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Originally Posted by Elbereth
Especially because they also are aware of their mother's infidelity and that it was why their father divorced her.

Are you sure about this? The reason I ask is that a lot of cheaters over the years spin their story that they were cheated on. It usually goes something like this:

1. Spouse cheats on LBS.
2. LBS gives up and starts dating.
3. Cheating spouse then accuses the LBS of stepping out of the marriage.
4. That becomes their life long narrative.

Now I know your gut reaction to this is going to be "NO, I know for sure she cheated on him!" But that is because that has been the "truth" you have believed for so long. So I am asking you if you know for sure for you to answer here. It doesn't matter to me (or the other posters here). The question is for you to ask yourself. Was he truthful back then? Or was he a lying cheater like he is now?


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Hey El,

I just have a few things to touch on. So you can take what I have to say with a grain of salt, but I'm feeling like this is very much a "look at that b!tch over there eating her crackers" kind of update/journal. So there's this meme out in the world where it says something to the effect of:

When you can't stand someone:
Look at that bitch over there eating her crackers


With a picture of a person watching another person just sitting there eating lunch not bothering any one or doing anything.

So if you've read through a lot of the stuff on here LBSs go through the stages of grief. We often cycle through them more than once. Some times we move on to a stage and then go through another one all over again. Some times we oscillate there back and forth for a while. A lot of this stuff is your anger talking. It's not logical. Not much of this is something to waste your energy on being angry about. But you're angry. You're pissed at stbxh and here we are. Going forward you may need to sit with these thoughts and ask yourself if all these negative feelings and worries are really worth the time and energy you're spending on them.

That being said:
Originally Posted by Elbereth
I have no real idea of what he said to the boys. When I took my time to talk to them about it, all I could do was stress my side of the story (that I love them and plan to go nowhere and that I didn't want this or know about the AP until just before they were told). I believe he also had our younger son stay with 'them' when he was staying in a local AirBnB and I suspect that she was there as well...I really don't know what affect it is having on the boys. They love me, but I have never felt they confide in me like they do their bio parents. So, I'm worried a bit what impact his behavior will have on them and how they view relationships. Especially because they also are aware of their mother's infidelity and that it was why their father divorced her.
First I'm 100% on board with Steve. There are 3 sides to every story, especially in these kind of things. His story, her story, and the truth. The truth devoid of bias and perception usually lies in the middle. Did you ever take the time to get to know stbxh's exW? Did you ever get her side of the story?

Let's just put it this way. My exH thought I was the devil and that I existed to make his life miserable. It took me years of being out of the situation to fully understand my part in our toxicity. Was he toxic? Yes. Was I? Big fat YES. But according to him I was, am and always will be the problem. The ex-gf of his that I adored took the time to get to know me. Took the time to find the truth. She was blessing, and never deserved what my ex did to her.

My current H's ex is also a sh!tshow of blame. She tells anyone who will listen that my H abandoned her. My H stands by the fact that he gave her multiple opportunities to get it together until he come home from work for the thousandth time to find his baby mama out on the town and the little one by my H's mother's house. No job. No cleaning. No cooking. And his mother and grandmother were always taking care of the little one. He threw all her crap on the lawn changed the locks and filed placement and custody paperwork. He got 50/50 and had to pay his ex child support out of the gate because she was already 4 and obviously his income was higher you know compared to 0. They have been contentious since. They put my stepD in the middle. Only in the last year has my H finally understood that playing that game will not win his daughter over. That he has to let his ex do the emotional manipulating that she's going to do and just hope when his D is old enough she'll understand.

The last thing I'm going to say about this, and please understand that this is coming from the place of being a stepmom and a stepchild, why does any of this matter? You have no control over how the boys view you, or the real reason for the divorce. You have no control over how this will affect their relationships in the future. You have no control over if the boys will ever really want to know your side of things. You did what you can do. Remain open to them and their questions. That's it. That's all there is for you to do here. So ask yourself, why you're so concerned about something completely out of your control when you know you've done everything in your power?
Originally Posted by Elbereth
We are not even divorced and he's with his other woman
Ok El, I get this hurts, and looks terrible, but once again, does this matter in the long run? You knew what was up. You knew this was a very big likelihood. Are you truly surprised or are you just stewing because you're already mad? Is being mad about this serving you in any way?
Originally Posted by Elbereth
Should I push to move things along? Is it bad to give your proposal first? Especially knowing that my lawyer wants to do discovery as H has already taken and hidden assets?
If you want this done there's a good chance you'll have to be the one making moves. But if your attorney is waiting on discovery there isn't much you can do. I would ask how long they plan on waiting for discovery before they file a motion with the court where the court will demand discover from stbxh. Typical discovery demands go out with much court intervention. They really just get a filing. But if it's become and issue the court will order the discovery be turned over and with a deadline. I think you may need to discuss in a little more depth what the plan is here going forward.
Originally Posted by Elbereth
The other thing that really bugs me is that STBXH is not coming back to down to finalize moving the rest of the stuff (mostly his) to our storage unit before the house goes on the market. Instead, he's sending our oldest to do it with hired help. I feel like he's just abandoned everything and left the burden on me and our son. He also pulled in our youngest son to do a lot during his final summer before college. Really so thoughtless.
I mean this in the kindest terms possible, why does this matter? He's getting it done. There are so many LBS who have there stbx's showing up and picking up a little here or there. Or not coming at all assuming the LBS will pack the whole house and they just get the stuff right before the closing date on the sale or the lease is up. Do you really want to deal with your stbxh more than you have to? Wouldn't you rather see the kiddo anyway? Your H isn't handling things in the best way. He is dumping his burden on other people. But once again, my dear, you know what's up. You know what you're dealing with. So is it the grown toddler you're dealing with's fault that your angry and frustrated now or is it a little on you for placing your expectations on him?

Even if stbxh was in a normal state of mind and the marriage was just kind of over and you could go forward letting bygones be bygones he was still not going to do things the way you wanted him to, because that's not how humans work. And you're not working with a reasonable person who just fell out of love and wants to move on. You're working with an unreasonable person who IMO has always been kind of unreasonable. He under no circumstances was ever going to do things they way you want or expect. Having expectations for a stbx especially one functioning in emotional crisis, whatever that crisis may be, sets you both up for failure. I've given this same advice a million times. When you have expectations for people when they are like this they are guaranteed to fail and you are guaranteed to be hurt, disappointed or angry. Don't do that to yourself. Having expectations for them serves you in no way. Drop your expectations to the floor and save yourself the angst.

I hope I don't seem to harsh. I really do understand what you're going through. I just know you do have control here, but you're just trying to control all the wrong things. You can only control yourself, your actions, and reactions. Focus on you. It's way past the time for you to seriously center this on you. You're mental health, physical health, financial health, and moving forward are the only things that matter right now.

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Originally Posted by SteveLW
Originally Posted by Elbereth
Especially because they also are aware of their mother's infidelity and that it was why their father divorced her.

Are you sure about this? The reason I ask is that a lot of cheaters over the years spin their story that they were cheated on. It usually goes something like this:

1. Spouse cheats on LBS.
2. LBS gives up and starts dating.
3. Cheating spouse then accuses the LBS of stepping out of the marriage.
4. That becomes their life long narrative.

Now I know your gut reaction to this is going to be "NO, I know for sure she cheated on him!" But that is because that has been the "truth" you have believed for so long. So I am asking you if you know for sure for you to answer here. It doesn't matter to me (or the other posters here). The question is for you to ask yourself. Was he truthful back then? Or was he a lying cheater like he is now?

The line should have read: " So I am asking you if you know for sure for you NOT to answer here.


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Hi all...this is why I love this site. So much care and empathy when you need it and also the smack of a 2x4 when you need that too. crazy

Eagle3,

We have had the boys half time (other half is spent with bio-mom). Of course, the oldest has been away part of the time when at college and the younger one is starting that as well now. I do have a room for them to 'come home to' with me if they want to stay with me instead of their moms when they are visiting. At least for now I do, not sure what will be my next place (small apartment or what). As our youngest was still at home and a senior, I did all I could to ensure that his last year of HS and last summer before college was not disrupted by the relationship collapse of us. While dad just did his own thing...

As for the reference of my STBXH's place being temporary, it is. He's not sure of his next landing place (although it will still be in the other state due to his job). So the older son is spending some time at his dads this week, but is trying to decide where we wants to stay for the next few months. He's thinking of learning a trade, so might move where that training is taking place.

My mentioning it was more about how meeting the affair partner so soon affects the kids mentally, more than about my feelings of him visiting there. I read all the time how emotionally damaging it can be. And, through the whole process of our separation, etc, it has been me who is the one worried about the boys having a place outside of their mothers. I also was worried about how all the disruption would impact our younger son...it's already been a hard couple of years for him as a teen with the pandemic.


SteveLW,

I had to laugh when I read your post (as in I've been having thoughts about their R). It's true, this IS the story I was told. Unfortunately, she has been hostile towards me (us) since the day I was serious with H. If you read back there was major drama there and she caused a lot of stress, drama and court costs in our relationship. BUT. As I have come to identify behaviors that have traumatized me from the last few years, and thought back to incidents in our own relationship...I am NOW QUESTIONING everything about what I thought I knew. He certainly could have cheated on her...or he certainly could have emotionally traumatized her as well and she sought comfort in an AP. I do know there was an AP and she has been on and off with him since...but I have no way of knowing the truth. He certainly didn't support her when her health was bad, so that is similar. But the story I know is the same story he told everyone. Including his family and friends. Regardless, you are right. I really don't know.


Wow Wayfarer...you knocked me hard with that 2x4, but I DO appreciate it. Who else is going to call me out on my whining? crazy

Originally Posted by Wayfarer
The last thing I'm going to say about this, and please understand that this is coming from the place of being a stepmom and a stepchild, why does any of this matter? You have no control over how the boys view you, or the real reason for the divorce. You have no control over how this will affect their relationships in the future. You have no control over if the boys will ever really want to know your side of things. You did what you can do. Remain open to them and their questions. That's it. That's all there is for you to do here. So ask yourself, why you're so concerned about something completely out of your control when you know you've done everything in your power?

I guess for me, I always felt (based on what I knew) that H and I had a generally 'normal' relationship and how that was a guiding light to our boys away from CRAZY. I have read how no matter how dysfunctional a parent is, the contrast between the 'sane' or more 'normal' parent and the dysfunctional one would help make the differences obvious and the kids would be drawn to the 'more sane or normal' behaviors instead of inheriting the dysfunctional ones (by not knowing any better). So, for ten years I've been doing my best to be the best bonus parent I could be and worrying about these things (along with H as well). Their bio-mom is not emotionally stable and a bit crazy (their words not just mine). And they haven't always wanted to stay with her. And now, look, H is dysfunctional too. So I guess it's just hard for me to turn that off. Like, yeah, maybe it's not appropriate that I feel like it's my responsibility. But I do. They are the only kids I will ever have and I love them fiercely. What I can and cannot control with that relationship has always been so hard for me. So this is where a lot of that frustration, anger, need, etc, is coming from. And yeah, I was a step-kid too. And I have a bigger connection with my step-dad then my bio one. So yeah, it is true I really have no decision-making control over what will actually happen, but I guess I am still trying to dance around and do things to help or influence a better outcome for them.

Originally Posted by Wayfarer
He under no circumstances was ever going to do things they way you want or expect. Having expectations for a stbx especially one functioning in emotional crisis, whatever that crisis may be, sets you both up for failure. I've given this same advice a million times. When you have expectations for people when they are like this they are guaranteed to fail and you are guaranteed to be hurt, disappointed or angry. Don't do that to yourself. Having expectations for them serves you in no way. Drop your expectations to the floor and save yourself the angst.

Originally Posted by Wayfarer
You're pissed at stbxh and here we are. Going forward you may need to sit with these thoughts and ask yourself if all these negative feelings and worries are really worth the time and energy you're spending on them.

Bam Bam 2x4 again...

Yes, I'm whining. Yes, I am still processing it all and I am obviously angry. I really have hit a low point of exhaustion. I am tired of having to carry the load for others. I feel taken advantage of by my previous H and my current one. I'm angry and sick of it. And I have been taking a PTSD/betrayal trauma course and I am realizing the mind games that have been played on me. So I think the new insights into my skewed past reality, and also the level of mental and physical exhaustion I am under, is throwing me back into an angry and depressed state. Yes, I obviously was not successful in enforcing my boundaries (I need growth there for sure) and yeah, you let people treat you the they treat you, etc. But I am realizing that many patterns of emotional abuse has occurred in this relationship of which I was not truly aware. I've been carrying the load because of the emotional games played on me and the skewed reality I was trying to function in. The blinders are off now. And yea, I am struggling to manage the overwhelming feelings of "how did I let all this happen and why didn't I see it for what it was"? I saw myself as an extremely smart and logical person. How was I so completely duped?

Originally Posted by Wayfarer
I hope I don't seem to harsh. I really do understand what you're going through. I just know you do have control here, but you're just trying to control all the wrong things. You can only control yourself, your actions, and reactions. Focus on you. It's way past the time for you to seriously center this on you. You're mental health, physical health, financial health, and moving forward are the only things that matter right now.

I am trying...truly I am. I am proud of how far I have come. I'm doing as much as I can to work through and process all of this and move forward. But I guess the realization that much of the way I was treated in this relationship was truly emotionally abusive has set me back a bit. I'm sort of questioning my whole reality and where I am really at emotionally. What from my past can I trust? Can I even trust my own decision making? My head says logical things, but the dreams, the tension in my body, the anxiety, etc. isn't in sync. I want to run away this time and I am angry that I can't because H is the only other person who can take care of this last push on house stuff and he's not doing it. So yes, I'm angry and doing it anyway, even though yes, I knew this would happen...or better yet, that it wouldn't happen the way I wanted/needed it too.

As for the OW...I honestly do not feel anything towards her other than some pity. I mean, she has no idea of what she has gotten herself into. I've stopped looking at her accounts and honestly never really feel anything about her. This didn't happen because of her. She is nothing to me. My feelings and anger are all aimed at STBXH and for concern for our/my kids metal state as a result of H's behavior.

I'm sorry if I sound like I'm just whining some more. I really am trying. I have overwhelming feelings right now of just quitting my job and taking a six-month sabbatical. That's the level of drowning I feel right now. I am QUESTIONING everything about what I thought I knew. I am usually not a 'runner'...and I won't kill myself...but I certainly just want this all to go away. I know that I am not the only one on this forum who feels that way...

Thank you for listening, and for pushing me in the right direction and pointing out what is not worth doing, but also empathizing with me while I am stuck for the moment. I am trying to work my way back up to being strong, positive and sure of myself.

xo,
El

Last edited by Elbereth; 08/27/21 11:57 PM.

Me 51, H 55
T10 M7, 2nd MR for both
2 Step Sons (18 and 20)
BD: Fall 2020
AP for at least 6 mos prior and still ongoing...
Divorce Started: Spring 2021


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Dear EL,

First of all, you are not whining, you are processing and the purpose of this forum is to let it all out. What you think, how you feel, so please don't apologize for that.

You are someone who kept yourself incredibly strong the first months after BD, I still remember that very well. I was always amazed of how you could still be so positive about everyhting.
I surely couldn't do that in the beginning.

But frankly, there is no person who can keep this up. You are simply somebody who was knocked down by it later than others.

And that's okay, be mad at him, at what he's done to you, what he's doing to his children.

Wayfarer and SteveLW have also had this period for sure, and they want to help by leading you in the right direction, but you are not ready for that yet. Their advice though is absolutely correct and step by step you will get there. (but in the meantime you'll still get knocked down 100 times...)

Believe me, you'll find it. It took me two years to get there but I managed, you will get there as well. With lot's of love and support from all of us xxx

Last edited by Eagle3; 08/28/21 10:15 AM.

Me (43) H (42)
M:14 T:18, S17, S14 & S14
4/19 BD1 ILYB & OW1 til 2/20
8/20 Moves abroad for work
12/20 Possible new OW2,wants divorce(no action)
09/21 D in progress (Me)
10/21 Start of H's awakening
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Hey there,

I am trying to catch up a bit. What a mess. Ugh. I am so sorry. Again, Wayfarer spits more genius. I don't claim to have any great advice, I just wanted to say hello to you and validate your frustrations and feelings. What a friggin jerk!

I am not going to say that you are bitter or scorned by his A, but I can tell you that I absolutely was! For a long time. And even after my H dumped X-OW, I remained that way to some extent for years. And it didn't just turn off one day and I didn't have this ability to rise above it, even though I felt as if I should. It was serious trauma and even with all the work, therapy and self care, it still just needed time. So I do not see you as whining and I completely empathize with how hurt and angry you feel. It is completely unfair. That is the part that you cannot change and that makes us feel so, so powerless. Some people here try and compare their sitches and give advice, but being left by your spouse for another person -- I mean full blown A, they pick up and leave you and go off with that person -- is a trauma far greater than many can ever know!

Also, I think the trauma is not only from the betrayal of being left for OW. I see you questioning everything that you thought you knew about your life and yourself. When our entire life is turned upside down and taken away from us, it changes everything and we question what we thought we ever knew. And what we thought we knew about ourselves and our identity. Again, not just some EAs and marital rift. It is TRAUMA. But, the good news is, this is the part (perception of reality) you can change. As you begin to heal, you can continue to change the way you see your history, relationships and what happened. Over time, you may actually feel better about how you see things. Why? Because you are not still with a person that would do this and traumatize you. He also has a history of failed Ms now and that speaks volumes to his character. You might not be there yet and that is okay, but you will some day. Have you read DejaVu's story from the beginning?

I have done a lot of this healing over the years and in some way I am grateful for it. I will never say that I am glad my H had an A and left me OW! I will say, I am glad that things finally exploded and we were forced to pick up all the pieces. It has taken me many years to be able to see that things were not healthy in our M and it was not working. Sometimes when you step out of something you begin to see it more clearly. Because of the work I have done in the last several years, I have learned to like (and love) myself so much more now. I don't like who I was in that M before. I also don't like who he was -- a troubled person that would do that to his W and family.

One might think this is easier for me to say from where I sit, having had my H come back. I am not sure if that is true. Maybe. I had to swallow my pride and be the woman that took back a cheating POS. That was not easy. I also had to heal my own trauma while simultaneously put back together a broken M. It took many, many years. But the thing is, my H was willing to suck up his own ego and do that hard work. You don't want a guy that isn't willing. He will most likely F-up this next R with this OW also. Give it a few years. And what a role model for his two sons (shakes head). I pity these kind of people now.

I think it is wonderful that you are maintaining a nice R with your step Ss. My step-dad was an incredible man and while he died young, I will never forget how wonderful he was. He played a different role in my life, but one that was just as valuable as my own (chaotic) mom and dad. He was the one that was calm, available and easiest to confide in. Continue to nurture those relationships because those two young men know their truth.

I guess overall what I am saying is it is perfectly okay with me to be p1ssed off for as long as you need to. For some of us the healing takes a long time to begin. But I do believe in time, you can really gain something incredible from this. You can grow into a better person as you heal your own traumas and reflect on what happened with a new lens. As you begin to recover, you will naturally attract more quality people and Rs into your life. That will be another silver lining to come.

Blu


Forgiveness liberates the soul. It removes fear. That is why it is such a powerful weapon. Nelson Mandela
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