Originally Posted by LH19
Well May if your core values are loyalty, honesty and integrity and your husbands are infidelity, lies and manipulation you can certainly see where this could/will be an issue in your marriage.

Hi LH, I don't think my H's core values are infidelity, lies, and manipulation. I don't think his behavior is in alignment with his values. I think you can change that by changing your behavior or, with time, your behavior erodes your values until you are no longer the person you thought you were. Question is, I guess, how far along that path he is... but that is his work to do, not mine.

Originally Posted by LH19
So I know you have read on the board what it takes for a successful reconciliation. I have posted many times and I know Sandi has also. So if right out of the gate you are afraid to separate for him to work on his issues that he will text A/P then do you really reconciliation is really on the table?

On the "trial" S, I was thinking more along the lines of what happened in Pommy's sitch. I just don't believe in trial separations UNLESS you can be fully 100% certain that both parties are doing it to work through things on their own and decide if the M is right for them. In my case, I'd have to believe 100% he wasn't going to start texting AP again. I don't 100% believe he's going to stop all contact forever with AP now. How could I have the trust to believe he could in an S situation? This man is scared of being alone.

Originally Posted by LH19
So a two plus year affair is not a reason to separate but some yelling at one another is acceptable? Come on May quit BSing yourself. When you are seeing your IC forget about your marriage and get to the root cause of what you are so afraid of and start working on that.

A two year plus A is absolutely reason to S, for me. It is not, necessarily, for my children. A high-conflict environment for the children is reason to S. I've read a lot about the effects of D on children, and that children in a "secretly unhappy" M do worse than children in openly conflictual households (all assuming you can eventually develop a healthy co-parenting relationship-- kids whose parents continue to fight after D do the very worst), even many years down the line, and as adults they can have serious issues with trust and intimacy because you've thrown this bomb that to them came out of nowhere.

TBH, I don't think it is a good idea for me to go here-- I think it will end up with me backsliding like I did in July. I spent multiple sessions going through this issue with my IC. A major part of my identity is being a mother. In fact, that probably contributed a lot to the problems in my M, particularly the SSM. I absolutely am incapable of pulling the trigger on this family and breaking it apart unless I know in my bones it was the right thing to do for the children. (And people telling me it is won't really help. I need to come to it myself.)

My IC tested this boundary for me a lot for weeks and then finally said OK. Let's see how we can protect you given that. We also worked out what it would take for me to do it-- I'd need to believe it was better for the children, meaning either the atmosphere in the home was toxic or getting there, or I was beaten down enough to feel it was negatively affecting my parenting. Last week, I felt both were true. I was done. I was not speaking to him. I was unable to be a good mom with him under this roof, which is why i asked him to leave.

In any case, I know many/most of you here have S or D and your kids are just fine, maybe better off than before, and this probably is super annoying and frustrating to you that this part is so hard for me. And I'm sure some of you think this is just me projecting my own fears onto my kids. I truly don't think so. It is about my own identity and how I see myself. And F him if he's going to get me to compromise my own values and my own understanding of who I am on top of everything else he's done.

Originally Posted by Valeska19
My question for you is yes - you will make not the decision for him - but are you enabling his indecision-making?

I think I have enabled his indecision throughout this whole process. I don't think I'm doing that anymore in the past week. But I will carefully watch myself to be sure I'm not.

Originally Posted by Valeska19
I would not suggest that H spill his guts w/o guidance. A therapeutic disclosure of sorts. Are you familiar with that?

Originally Posted by Sage4
I echo Valeska's suggestion of a therapeutic disclosure. He (along with the help of a therapist) can get all the details out on paper, all his feelings, all of it. And you get to digest it on your own terms, with the support of a therapist to help you deal with the information contained.

What I'd meant is his spillage the other day with the box of memorabilia that he'd sworn didn't exist, her visit to our city, all the places they visited that he says we will need to reclaim for ours. He's said several times post that convo that I know 100% now. I asked him what would possibly make me think this is really everything. He said he understands why I wouldn't trust him on this, but that the difference is that this was his choice to tell me everything. That these last things he's shared were things that he thought I never really needed to know if we split, this is one of his ways of demonstrating to me that he's letting go of AP and committing to the M.

But, I do think this idea of a therapeutic disclosure or at least the opportunity for one would make sense if we stay together. I'll hold onto this one.

Sage-- super helpful about the enabling. I am definitely seeing it in the processing of the A, and me NOT engaging this week has been both freeing for me and potentially part of the reason he's acting differently this time.

I'll give you an example of how he has needed my approval throughout all of this. When he first told me he had an "emotional connection" to someone a year ago now, I of course looked her up online and found a photo. She's 11 years younger than me, same ethnic mix, but... plain looking. Kind of pretty, I can see how someone would think so, but not beautiful by any stretch. And not trying to toot my own horn here but significantly less attractive than I am. It was like when FlySolo said her H's GF was like a watered down version of her. So I said to H, I found her online. And man. I am shocked. She is NOT an attractive person. He looked at me and was all upset, and then he went and found ANOTHER photo of her online that was more attractive. He said that first one was a bad photo. This is more what she looks like. I just looked at him and shook my head.

Sunday, when he did his whole spill, he told me it always bothered him that I didn't think she was pretty. How messed up is that??

Me (45) H (41)
M:13 T:17, D8 & D10
4/19 BD #1 ILYB
8/19 BD #2 Long-distance EA
12/19 BD #3 Actually 2 year PA
2-5/20 R attempt #1
6-7/20 limbo again, back in contact with AP
8/20-present R attempt #2