H was upset last night after reading a comment left by a person who replied to his comment on another post. He went on and on about it. What really got to me was when he said, “She is just crying over spilled milk and is probably just dwelling on what has happened to her.” I was actually surprised that H never used the above phrase towards me during all the crying I had been doing over the last several months. I was also confused at his reaction to her comment and couldn’t figure out why it got under his skin. It was not a personal attack of any kind. It was just a comment as to what she thought about the situation, along with a little advice for him.
Her comment was far from the above phrase he used to define it. Not knowing this person’s situation, how could H even say she was dwelling on it. We don’t know this person’s story. It could be something fresh or it could be something that she has been dealing with for years. Everyone’s situation is different. It takes time to get past a betrayal. It depends on how long the betrayal has been going on. It depends on how a person finds out or if they are told by their spouse. It depends on how a person deals with their pain and self-healing, especially if their spouse does not help them. There are a lot of contributing factors that play a large part in the healing process.
That’s when H told me, “You can see the forest behind you. You came out of it.” He said it as though he was proud of the fact that I did it all on my own. I don’t think he realizes just how dark and gloomy that forest was, and all I faced while walking through it. How I had to face those demons during those long lonely nights. The cries of fear I let out feeling so lost while thinking I was taking the wrong path. The snakes that hissed at me, which was their way of telling me, that it was all my fault for entering the forest in the first place. At times, I wished that a wild animal would swallow me up, ending it all for me, so I would no longer feel the emptiness. And all those long lonely nights, I sat in the dark wishing someone would rescue me.
Yes, I took it upon myself to walk through that forest. I had to. I couldn’t wait until H decided to walk through that forest with me, because if I had waited, that time would have never come. I had to go through it in order to become sane again; to face all that had happened. To accept it all for what it is. I know there are a lot of people out there who cannot get through that dark forest, some are still going through it, while with others, and they take a detour knowing that if they started walking through it, they would never find their way out.
I know it’s going to take me years to heal from all this, but I have already come so far. I’m to the point now where I’m not crying anymore and it is no longer haunting me as it once did. I can deal with it and talk about it. I don’t get upset like I was before. It just happened that way for me. No two experiences are exactly the same.
Just because I choose to no longer discuss it anymore, doesn’t mean I don’t have the pain each and every day – 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I have it all the time. It’s part of me. I have not healed completely from it and who knows how long it’s going to take me.
Don’t fool yourself into believing that it’s no big deal.
Don’t fool yourself into believing that I have forgiven you.
Don’t fool yourself into believing I’m over it and that my pain is gone.
You cannot compare your infidelity and betraying me like you did, as though it were spilled milk. However, you can compare it to a major earthquake that hits us here at home. This building gets flattened and we cannot move back into the building because we don’t have the money to rebuild it. You cannot compare all you’ve done to spilled milk, for if it were, it would be as easy as getting a towel and cleaning it up. It’s not that simple.
Thanks for taking the time to read through my blog. I do appreciate your input and advice.
H knows exactly what is needed in order to help us get back on track. I have told him repeatedly, that is, until I realized my words were falling on deaf ears. Its not that he doesn’t know how to turn the corner, he just refuses to do so.
I am no longer living for the Infidelity. That is not to say that I have forgotten or forgiven for that matter. Forgiveness comes with time. H is still blame shifting onto me for his having the affair. He has went as far as saying I drove the car half way there (to met her). His excuses continue to grow as to why he cannot work on the marriage. Until he starts to work on himself, there is nothing more I can do.
H says he doesn’t care who knows about his affair or what he has done. So password protecting this blog is really not necessary. It doesn’t bring H shame, anger or hurt feelings. In fact, he has said this blog has been a beacon for him. It has helped him bring back to memory what he has forgotten.
I have just spent the last 4+ hours reading your blog Sandy. I can practically feel your pain but I also can feel your husband’s frustration and sense of being overwhelmed by all that has transpired. I do think there are a few things to consider here so I hope you won’t mind that I step into the role of an unbiased 3rd party here.
Sandy, you seem to need something from your husband that will be the turning point in trying to make your marriage work, but I don’t know if you know exactly what that is or if it is one of those “I’ll know it when I see it” things. At least I did not even get a clear cut idea of what you want. You continually state you don’t feel like he has made it up to you; you don’t feel loved; and you don’t have trust. But have you thought exactly what it would take to put things on the right track? Have you told him? Men do not think the way we women do and what seems like a no-brainer between women, is lost upon most men. I suspect your husband doesn’t know HOW to turn that corner — not that he is not willing and wanting to. We really do need to spell it out for men because through no fault of their own, they just don’t think like us ;-)))
“Husband” — have you ever considered that you might have an Internet addiction? If emails, forums, chats and facebook are causing so much mental anguish for your wife, they will ultimately bring that mental anguish upon you. I understand how the Internet can become a huge social and recreational outlet but if you’re sitting at home alone with your computer, finding yourself divorced and sharing custody of your child…. you are looking forward to a lonely life with your computer. At the same time, I don’t think a husband and wife have to give up all friendships and personal interests to preserve a marriage. However, I do think it might take doing that for a while so you can refocus on the things that brought you together and rediscover what you love and enjoy about each other.
I believe there can be recovery from infidelity but it requires some fundamental things. Sandy, you need to tell your husband what you need from him right now and then when he gives it to you, you MUST let this hurt go and start fresh. If you need counseling to help you deal with it, then get it. But at some point you have to start living for the marriage and NOT the infidelity. You will need to truly forgive your husband in order to move forward — and moving forward means not living in the past.
Husband, your part of the infidelity recovery is to be patient, loving and truly sorry. Ask Sandy what she needs from you and try your best to give it to her. Start living for your future together and limit friendships with women since this is a very sensitive time for you and Sandy. Get off the computer and away from the cellphone. Reconnect with your wife and daughter.
I can’t speak as a man but at the age of 50 I have come to realize that men and women do look at sex and love very differently. I do believe that “husband” very well may have strayed for the reasons he has stated and I also believe him when he says it didn’t mean anything to him. I think he is saying that it had no place deep in his heart, where his love for his wife (you, Sandy) resides. I am rarely one who advises people to stay in relationships that have gone truly bad, but I am not sure this one has and that is why I am inclined to believe you can work it out.
My last suggestion to you Sandy would be to get a complete physical and psychological check-up to rule out clinical depression. It would be a normal physiological reaction to the enormous psychological strain you have been under and it can prevent you from being able to lift this weight off your shoulders and move forward.
I would also suggest that you might consider making some (or all) of your blog “password protected” if you do want to work through your problems. It is surely good for you to have an outlet to express yourself but may not be good for your marriage if it (or people commenting here) provoke more shame, anger and hurt feelings.
You and your family will be in my prayers.