justareturner
Hello! 
I just joined this forum - I hope I'm doing this right! I'll do my best to be brief.

I'm a WS who cheated (multiple times, both online and in person). We're in recovery, d-day happened a little over a year ago now and a lot has happened since then. While I feel that we/I have made progress in recovery, the problem I continue to have (and always have had) is bringing the subject up and having discussions around it (good or bad) with the frequency in which she wants need. 

We've tried scheduling specific times in which to have these discussions - ranging from once a week to nightly discussions. But as we all know, life is crazy and the schedule doesn't always work, sometimes stuff gets in the way or one of us forgets or is completely zapped for the day, etc. 

But honestly, the scheduling is not the biggest issue for me - I can find ways to 100% stick to a schedule.  But I often have trouble ensuring that the conversation is valuable or useful (to her, at minimum) - basically at this point "I don't know what to talk about". I don't want to avoid the conversations - I want to make sure she knows it's on my mind and not just slowly getting buried over time. We've just had so many conversations about it and everything sounds like a rehashing or replica of a previous conversation we've had. We've talked about the timeline, why I cheated, the impact it's had on her (and our family), we've talked to our couples therapist (although she wasn't working out and we are currently looking for another) and our friends, I've written a "restitution letter". It's also worth noting that she wants me to be the one to initiate/guide the conversation. 

So I'm wondering if someone may help shed some insight on what may be useful conversations to have or how I can better think about things so I can cultivate them myself. I would really appreciate any insight anyone has. I want to be a good partner, I want to us heal and I want her to be happy and secure. 

Thank you.
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TimT
There are a few questions I'd be curious to know the answers to...
  • Can your wife provide clarity in regard to what she wants you to talk about? Or is she not sure what she needs to hear? (If she's knows, make sure it's clear to you, too. If she doesn't know, there's no way for you to know, either.)
  • Does it seem like there is a need to talk more about the FACTS of the affair? Or is it about the MEANING it had to you? Or does the conversation focus on her reaction/pain?
  • Are these conversations primarily focused on the past? Or has talk shifted to the present (even if it's about present pain and fear) or the future?
Generally speaking, it is certainly normal a year after D-day to still be having healing conversations. I appreciate your willingness to do it AND to take the initiative for starting them. You many not always know what she needs (ask) but driving the conversation around these three themes should be healing for both of you: (1) Comfort: acting and speaking in a way that attempts to soothe her pain; (2) Assurance: reinforcing your ongoing commitment to trustworthiness with specific ways you're living that out; and (3) Hope: speaking about the kind of life/marriage you want to enjoy wither her, even if you know it will take some time to start experiencing that.

As time goes on, affair conversations should change focus (from the past to the present/future) and gradually diminish in frequency. 

If a couple get's "stuck" in the need for ongoing conversations that don't seem to be changing, there may need to be extra attention given to one or more of these issues:
  • the involved partner's ability and willingness to take the lead in bringing these things up in conversation (which, it seems, you are doing,
  • the injured partner's ability and willingness to forgive, 
  • increased clarity in the "WHY" of the affair (see the Understanding WHY course at myChange.courses),
  • help for the injured partner to help them progress past the trauma.
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nina
Hi J 
What I can add is whatever the question is or how hard to answer  dont lie  cos if it doesn't make sense it won't satisfy her , for me it took 3 years (actually I just got the answer) I kept asking the same questions maybe different way sometimes my H got frustrated and got angry why u asking the same question or I already answered that (cos he lied ;or he couldn't remember what he told me or he didn't want to say the truth) we know you &  we feel it i  if not right (if we give u time or wait for u to tell the truth doesn't mean we are stupid) I kept playing the question and the answer in my head all the times it will not make sense at all to me .
At last I put it out & he said yep I just wanted to protect u (lucky for him & me  not to loose it my son walked in) .
See  for me when it didn't make sense,  it was like every time I asked questions , was  DDay again .
Plus his answer doesn't make sense cos when I asked a different question should match what he told me earlier but didn't and  when that happened I jump to another question and forget the original question I wanted to ask so I had to have another sessiontime  for questions again and that made me very anxious so between the 2 sessions  was no healing for us .
Good luck and relax make sure both are calm or at least you don't be on guard and don't make her  feel she's attacking you by her questions, make sure if she gets upset or very anxious calm her and answer  lovingly. 
Give her all the time she needs to ask, if u feel she needs a hug at one point give it but know when , watch for her body language  even if u don't give her hug  when gets hard for her to hear sit next to her sometimes a small jester make a difference & like Tim said make sure u know what she's asking.
All the best  don't give up  .
Ill be praying for the both of u .
Sorry I talked a lot . 
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notemanj
One of the things my H has done to make sure that I know he is still thinking, everyday, about the damage and pain that he caused is to text me everyday at a specific time. Early on, it was more lengthy. He would state that he was sorry for choosing to have an affair and that he wanted to check in and see how I was doing. Now, 3 years later, it is often just a pic, meme, emoji, letting me know that he is thinking of me.
It gave me the opportunity to say “I’m having a hard day” or “I’m freaking out” without me having to ask him to talk to me about things. 
Wishing everyone here peace and healing!

Female BS Married 18 yrs
DDay 3/7/2017 through 4/2019 and counting. 
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