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4 month d-day anniversary is today. We are in R, and things were moving along.

Setback this weekend. We were at our lake place up north (where most of his sexting activities took place), and we were both doing our own things – cleaning and yard work, etc. It got dark outside, and he is one that always used to be leery of going outside up there after dark because we do have bears up there, foxes, and occasional sightings of lynx. This was one of the “Aha moments” for me 4 months ago, when he would go sit outside in the dark of night with his phone.

On Saturday evening he said he was going to go down to the fire pit to make sure the fire was extinguished. He was gone for 25 minutes and it was pitch black out. So, of course this triggered me - rational or not, I don't know, but it did. I looked, and his phone was there on the counter, so he didn’t have it with him, so that was good. After a while, I went down there, and he was nowhere to be found, and the fire was still glowing.

I walked down to the dock (where he used to go also), and he wasn’t there. So I went back up to the house, and he was there. He asked where I was. I said I walked down to hang out with him, and mentioned that I found it odd that the fire was still ignited. He said he was just coming up to use the bathroom and was going to go back.

But then the fight happened. He looked at me and said, “I can’t even go sit by a fire without you checking up on me?” And from there it went to how he’s sick of me checking his phone, he understands why I do it, but he said, “It’s getting a little old…” And there I went. I lost it. And of course my tears came. Only this time, he said he is sick of it. He said he’s just mad now, and then said some really mean things…including “For the sh*& I’m getting for this, I wish I would’ve just F-d her”.

We ended up sleeping in separate rooms that night. Then yesterday, we had to drive 3 hours back home, and neither of us said a single word.

ALSO – This is the first time in over a month that I even brought anything up. I’ve calmed my anger down, and basically no crying in front of him or anything… Its not like I’m bringing it up every five minutes.

So…I’ve just had it. I don’t know if I can do it, but I think I have to, for my own self but today starts the 180.
 

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It sounds like a communication break down. We still have them too, and we are 4 months out. Once you guys are home and calmed down, let him know that you had put two and two together during the affair and realize that it triggered you. Let him know that you are beginning to trust him more, but it still eats at the back of your mind every now and then. I would also let him know that you love him and are proud of the hard work he is doing.

FYI my trigger lately has been work. I am being scheduled 5-6 days a week. His affair took place while I worked overnights because he was lonely. I have no clue how to keep from worrying while I am working.
 

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Sorry honey.
He is sounding very defensive!
Sounds like he just wants to rug sweep.
How has your R been. Going up until this point?
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4 months and he's acting like that? That doesn't bode well. Are you guys in MC?

My hubby doesn't like it when I trigger either. We're two years out and I still trigger, but that's part of the process and he has to deal. When he doesn't it sets me back. So we bring it up in MC and keep working on it till we get it done.
 

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Bidding for connection- that has been the "theme" of my last few counseling sessions and it has helped greatly.

I see you attempted one, (sit with him by the fire) mixed with some concern (it's dark, where is he? did he get eaten by a bear?))) and he met that bid with a sharp attack/rejection, resulting in more hurt which just snowballed.

Was his affair strictly online? In your marriage, were you always the one trying to _connect_ with him and he in turn rebuffs your attempts?

I hope he has shame because I would like to think it was that emotion that caused his outburst. I mentioned this in another thread, that they _can't_ understand the depth of the pain you are feeling because they didn't experience that end of the betrayal...and instead of seeing your desire to reconcile and healing as a positive thing, he sees it as a ball and chain. Pffft on him.

Has he even been educated on the stages of grief you will go through on your healing journey? Talk about being a jerk towards your emotions.

Well 180 might be the best plan.....so he doesn't feel "checked up" on....but then you are checking out???

I'm sorry you are feeling abandoned again with a man who on the surface seems to invest very little in your reconciliation process.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Sorry honey.
He is sounding very defensive!
Sounds like he just wants to rug sweep.
How has your R been. Going up until this point?
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R has been OK for the most part. At first he did and said all the right things, and I believe he was remorseful. Then he started getting angry and for a while was throwing some old stuff from 12 years ago in my face - blameshifting.
He just thinks I should just be over it because we've talked about it many times, he's apologized and he says he's done everything he can do... He just sees it as what's done is done, lets get on to our present and our future. Which I do understand, but he doesn't get it that my mind DOES go back there, and I can't help it.
But the words he said on Saturday, cut like a knife. And he does know it, but no apology.

Funny though. He's sent me 7 texts today to see how my day is, to see what I am doing, to say hi, to say he loves me. Yesterday we didn't say two words to eachother.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Bidding for connection- that has been the "theme" of my last few counseling sessions and it has helped greatly.

I see you attempted one, (sit with him by the fire) mixed with some concern (it's dark, where is he? did he get eaten by a bear?))) and he met that bid with a sharp attack/rejection, resulting in more hurt which just snowballed.

Was his affair strictly online?
It was all via cell phone - sexting with pix to an old coworker. And vague plans to possibly hook up in real life.

In your marriage, were you always the one trying to _connect_ with him and he in turn rebuffs your attempts?
Nope, actually I thought we were doing ok as a couple (we've been together 23 years, married 18), except I lost interest in sex..I've taken that part of the responsibility for what's happened. I wasn't giving it up, he went looking.

I hope he has shame because I would like to think it was that emotion that caused his outburst. I mentioned this in another thread, that they _can't_ understand the depth of the pain you are feeling because they didn't experience that end of the betrayal...and instead of seeing your desire to reconcile and healing as a positive thing, he sees it as a ball and chain. Pffft on him.

Has he even been educated on the stages of grief you will go through on your healing journey? Talk about being a jerk towards your emotions.
At first he dealt with everything as it came up, when I'd cry, when I'd get angry, when I just wanted to talk. But he feels I should just be over it. And like the other night he said, "I didn't actually DO anything!" Minimizes. And now he's the angry one.

Well 180 might be the best plan.....so he doesn't feel "checked up" on....but then you are checking out???
I don't know. I love him with all my heart, but some days, I wished I would've just kicked him out on D-day. Today I just feel sort of "alone" inside my own marriage. If that makes any sense. Maybe it would be better to be truly alone...

I'm sorry you are feeling abandoned again with a man who on the surface seems to invest very little in your reconciliation process.
Thank you. It does seem that way, today. :(
 

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I think you should text back that you cannot just pretend like nothing happened, on the weekend, or 4 months ago. Something serious. A major breach of trust. That you are willing to work on healing, but it will take time. Years. He has no right to demand trust, he has to earn it. Every day. If he can't take that, if he can't face up to what he did, then why bother? He needs to look up things about how to build a good, strong marriage. Like the bidding for connection mentioned, that is from Gottman I think. Good stuff!
 

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Hey says, "He didn't do anything physically but mentally he _plotted_ a way to betray you emotionally and perhaps PA. Like that Reba McEntire "Have you ever cheated on me, I said only in my mind"----

Here is the rub, he has minimized the cheating because it wasn't PA but he can't see that it hurts like as if you caught them in the act. Goes back to the fact they can't _feel_ it because they didn't experience it.

Online and sexting affairs are especially difficult to feel safe around because it invaded your home. That style of communication betrayal provides no safe harbor, it's at our jobs, lake houses, cars, homes, baseball games anywhere there is a wifi. Anytime they have a spare moment they can use it to stir it up again. Talk about triggers- every time that phone goes off, triggers will flash through your mind. So how do we find some sort of peace???

I know what it's like to look back on behavior and see how the WS went the extra mile to indulge their affairs. My spouse was suddenly so accommodating to running errands alone and now I know it's because he was texting her while gone. Makes one so mad when you think about all the ways they were being sneaky and using our trust in them to cloak themselves so they could carry on the shenanigans.

What steps have you taken to affair proof (if that's even possible)-- triggers are normal but are there any underlying questions you feel like he hasn't answered that could be the root of your trigger? Do you feel in your gut that he is being transparent?

You were relieved to see the phone lying there- and I've been there and know that feeling and I suspect you are like me in that we are trying to accept the fact that we will never trust them again. We are grieving the fact that our spouses are only as faithful as their opportunities.

Are you in counseling?
 

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4 month d-day anniversary is today. We are in R, and things were moving along.

Setback this weekend. We were at our lake place up north (where most of his sexting activities took place), and we were both doing our own things – cleaning and yard work, etc. It got dark outside, and he is one that always used to be leery of going outside up there after dark because we do have bears up there, foxes, and occasional sightings of lynx. This was one of the “Aha moments” for me 4 months ago, when he would go sit outside in the dark of night with his phone.

On Saturday evening he said he was going to go down to the fire pit to make sure the fire was extinguished. He was gone for 25 minutes and it was pitch black out. So, of course this triggered me - rational or not, I don't know, but it did. I looked, and his phone was there on the counter, so he didn’t have it with him, so that was good. After a while, I went down there, and he was nowhere to be found, and the fire was still glowing.

I walked down to the dock (where he used to go also), and he wasn’t there. So I went back up to the house, and he was there. He asked where I was. I said I walked down to hang out with him, and mentioned that I found it odd that the fire was still ignited. He said he was just coming up to use the bathroom and was going to go back.

But then the fight happened. He looked at me and said, “I can’t even go sit by a fire without you checking up on me?” And from there it went to how he’s sick of me checking his phone, he understands why I do it, but he said, “It’s getting a little old…” And there I went. I lost it. And of course my tears came. Only this time, he said he is sick of it. He said he’s just mad now, and then said some really mean things…including “For the sh*& I’m getting for this, I wish I would’ve just F-d her”.

We ended up sleeping in separate rooms that night. Then yesterday, we had to drive 3 hours back home, and neither of us said a single word.

ALSO – This is the first time in over a month that I even brought anything up. I’ve calmed my anger down, and basically no crying in front of him or anything… Its not like I’m bringing it up every five minutes.

So…I’ve just had it. I don’t know if I can do it, but I think I have to, for my own self but today starts the 180.
Your reconciliation sounds similar to mine.

He appeared to be putting on an act for awhile about being remorseful, but then the truth came out that he was resentful of having to be transparent to me.

Sorry you are here and your spouse is such an jack wad.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
What steps have you taken to affair proof (if that's even possible)-- triggers are normal but are there any underlying questions you feel like he hasn't answered that could be the root of your trigger? Do you feel in your gut that he is being transparent?

Well, I do check his phone regularly, I do have his email password, he doesn't have Facebook, we work in the same company, so I always know where he's at. I don't know what else to do. As far as the OW, I know he hasn't talked to her, and I know there no feelings, he wanted a sex buddy - and she ended up sending him little love notes during the day that were emotionally charged...that's when he realized it wasn't so much of a sex game on her part, possibly more. (She has since reached out to me asking me to get him to apologize to her for using her. LOL! LOL! LOL!)
I don't think he'd do this again. But I never thought he would in the first place, so I question everything. I hate watching him use his phone, I hate it when I can't figure out how to upload a pic on my phone and he can show me how. I hate all these things - yes, they are triggers.
Yes, I feel in my gut he's being transparent. BUT - I never felt in my gut that he was cheating on me in the first place...I don't want to play the part of that fool again!


You were relieved to see the phone lying there- and I've been there and know that feeling and I suspect you are like me in that we are trying to accept the fact that we will never trust them again. We are grieving the fact that our spouses are only as faithful as their opportunities.


Are you in counseling?
No. Well, I went to IC a couple times. Didn't do much for me. MC - he agreed after D-day but it never happened...Now I don't think he'll go. I think this 180 might do something though, and make him agree. He's not gonna like it.
 

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For the 180 - I don't know how to get around #11 - Do not say "I love you". He tells me countless times a day he loves me, he texts it and emails it. Of course at first after D-day I didn't respond to it, and he understood. But for the past couple of months I've said it back.
So now today, he's texted and emailed it a few times, and now he's coming back with, "Why aren't you saying it back?" And "If I didn't say it, you'd question me!" So what do I do? Part of the charm of the 180 is to make him realize that I'm not dwelling on "it" or him, or going to have any more arguments. That I'm just moving on with my own life, regardless of the outcome if we R or D.
So, if I don't say it, it will become an argument.

Not sure what to do.
 

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So sorry to read about this. :( This post is a trigger for me.

We also had a lake-front cottage and my ex would go out in the pitch-darkness to text women this summer from the fire-pit and dock while my son and I were inside at night. I can't blame you for "checking up on him" at all.

I can partially understand a WS being annoyed for being "checked up on" but honestly, their actions caused the suspicion! Your D-Day was only four months ago. I wish your WS would have been more supportive during that moment. Do whatever you need to do.

I don't know about not saying, "I love you." I don't think you have to follow the 180 to an exact "T" do what's right for you. If it doesn't feel right to say, "I love you" then don't say it. The same in reverse if it feels wrong not to say it.
 
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I think his texting is a attempt to make himself feel better. Again that bid for connection- he senses you are pulling away, it makes him anxious and so he pursues you. You sensed him pulling away at the lake house (his outburst and demands that checking up on him stop)--made you anxious and triggered, it's a vicious cycle.

You have to do the 180 for you, not in attempt to get him to change. It's so you won't be emotionally addicted to him (which varies based on _his_ moods) and be more interdependent and responsible for yourself emotionally. Love yourself. Mother yourself and let yourself really be sad about it all.....because it's all really sad and that is what sucks about infidelity. It just hurts so damn bad.

You could say, I hope you can show me love instead of lip service. Wouldn't it be nice to be in a healing spot where the "I love you's" feel authentic?

I hope to be in that place some day too.
 

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Bidding for connection- that has been the "theme" of my last few counseling sessions and it has helped greatly.

I see you attempted one, (sit with him by the fire) mixed with some concern (it's dark, where is he? did he get eaten by a bear?))) and he met that bid with a sharp attack/rejection, resulting in more hurt which just snowballed.

Was his affair strictly online? In your marriage, were you always the one trying to _connect_ with him and he in turn rebuffs your attempts?

I hope he has shame because I would like to think it was that emotion that caused his outburst. I mentioned this in another thread, that they _can't_ understand the depth of the pain you are feeling because they didn't experience that end of the betrayal...and instead of seeing your desire to reconcile and healing as a positive thing, he sees it as a ball and chain. Pffft on him.

Has he even been educated on the stages of grief you will go through on your healing journey? Talk about being a jerk towards your emotions.

Well 180 might be the best plan.....so he doesn't feel "checked up" on....but then you are checking out???

I'm sorry you are feeling abandoned again with a man who on the surface seems to invest very little in your reconciliation process.
What are the stages of grief..This information could help me..google!!
 

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But then the fight happened. He looked at me and said, “I can’t even go sit by a fire without you checking up on me?” And from there it went to how he’s sick of me checking his phone, he understands why I do it, but he said, “It’s getting a little old…” And there I went. I lost it. And of course my tears came. Only this time, he said he is sick of it. He said he’s just mad now, and then said some really mean things…including “For the sh*& I’m getting for this, I wish I would’ve just F-d her”.
I am speechless. I cannot imagine how you must feel to hear him say that to you.

You have to know I am not defending him but I think this is the very reason why many Rs fail. The WS simply is sick of dealing with the BS. The WS is over it and wants the BS to get over it too. I think the most sad part is that us WS are sick of it too and we want to be over but how in the feck are we supposed to do that?

He knows he screwed up or he wouldn't be sending so many texts but the lack of apology, to me, is a demonstration of his desire to have you stop bringing it up and letting his A fade into the past as though all he did was forget to get milk on the way home. I strongly caution you against this happening because it is going to result in your stuffing your feelings constantly and I do not want that for you.

For the 180 - I don't know how to get around #11 - Do not say "I love you". He tells me countless times a day he loves me, he texts it and emails it. Of course at first after D-day I didn't respond to it, and he understood. But for the past couple of months I've said it back.
So now today, he's texted and emailed it a few times, and now he's coming back with, "Why aren't you saying it back?" And "If I didn't say it, you'd question me!" So what do I do? Part of the charm of the 180 is to make him realize that I'm not dwelling on "it" or him, or going to have any more arguments. That I'm just moving on with my own life, regardless of the outcome if we R or D.
So, if I don't say it, it will become an argument.

Not sure what to do.
I must admit I want to string your husband up by the short and curlies so this may not be the best advice but when he asks again why you aren't saying it let him know you simply don't want to and he doesn't need to feel as though he has to say it either.

I think we take the 180 too literally though. The guidelines are crucial don't get me wrong but it isn't about punishing him or not saying things, it is about refocusing on the only person you have control over and that is you my friend.

I wouldn't get caught up in the fine details but I would certainly, and you should have already been doing this even during the R, put time and energy in honoring yourself and creating a level of peace and happiness that exists outside of your marriage.

I know this setback is stinging like hell, it should, but remember you are going to have communicate with him eventually. You can't spend the next 20 years doing the 180 and I think it is really important that he gets to hear how hurt you are over his thoughtless comments. You also need to hear his perspective just please do not feed him to a bear over it. :)

*hugs* It is going to be okay.
 

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His comments to you were ridiculously selfish. You might be right, if he isn't understanding what you're going through then maybe it's time for you to turn on some icy, disinterested, aloofness. Make him feel like he's an afterthought in your world. Make him work for attention. If he doesn't like it, tough, he knows where the door is.
 
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