Fiona29 Show full post »
Hi Thrive,

You wrote: "I was not as cut and dried as some others and told him that if he needed to talk to her or write her something to "wrap-up" the experience he could..."

And I, cut-and-dried as I am, did allow my wife to write the no-contact email. (She had to write two. He is kind of dense.) But that wasn't an analysis and resolution of feelings, thing. It was a "what we did was wrong and a betrayal of both our spouses. Except to acknowledge this email, there will be no more contact between us..." thing.

"I sat him down and asked him to use this opportunity to revisit any remaining feelings for her.  I asked him to be honest with himself and me - if he still had feelings for her - if he found himself wishing that he'd made a different choice - then to come back and tell me so."

I sound like a broken record, but if after 28 years, I felt I had to tell my wife to analyze her feelings and make a choice, then the choice is made. It seems pretty obvious that your husband had an infatuation and, like all infatuations, they fade - typically after a few weeks unless they are nurtured by an affair...and he was experiencing the fade and the comparative worth of what he could have with her to what did have with you.

WS's may have to deal with feelings...but they should deal with them alone or with their spouses or with their therapists, wise friends, or priests - not through sanctioned periodic discussions with their APs.
BH, 5+ Mo EA, DDay 3/8/18
"...regarding all as God after God."
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I actually totally agree, AnywhereButHere.  I asked him to analyze his feelings for MY benefit.  And to be clear, when we discussed it, I was equally clear that this was to be an INTERNAL process - not something he was talking about with her.  I just wanted to make 100% sure I'd given him EVERY chance to make sure of his feelings and to leave if there was even one tiny part of him that wanted to. 

Because my husband had a history of bottling up uncomfortable feelings I wanted to give him every opportunity and even encouragement to really explore this honestly.  And again that was to make sure I wasn't working to build something on shaky ground and to calm MY fears.   To be fair, he told me from the get-go (and on repeat throughout the months following) that here was no question for him.  He was 100% sure he wanted to save the marriage even though he at times feared he'd damaged it too much.  

Also, I hope that I didn't come across as judging anyone for taking a "cut and dried" approach. I don't know if my approach was better or dumber.    I don't think there is a "right way" to deal with this.  You can only do what feels right and what you can live with.

And by the way - if somehow in my post I appeared to be saying that I felt sanctioned "talks" with the AP was a good idea - I DO NOT.  We were in the uncomfortable position of having to pick up his belongings so I just choose to use it in a way that made sense to me.  My husband clearly dreaded it like the plague.  

I actually 100% concur that it is better left to sorting out within their IC, with their spouse (if that makes sense to them as a couple), friends, family or with a priest.  Any on-going contact with the AP, particularly of an emotional nature seems like a very bad idea to me. 
BS - Female
Married 27 years, one adult child
DD May 2016

“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” - V Frankl
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I seem to be rattling a lot of cages and I am sorry if that is the case.
It is not my intention to add salt to wounds or fan fires.
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We can handle it, Sorry. The BSs on this site are going through much worse than anything you can throw at them. But when triggered, respond we will.

Obviously, marriages are of different types and the people in them have different conceptions of what their marriage signifies. In your marriage, your husband requires that you add more joggers to your too small jogging group because your AP is in it. In my marriage, I would require that my wife leave a jogging group, no matter what size it is, because her AP is in it. This doesn't mean that one marriage is better than the other - just different.

But in a committed marriage in which infidelity and cheating are considered an immoral emotional assault on an innocent person - the betrayed spouse - any  'closure' and ‘tying up feelings’ in a process in which NC is considered to be somewhat flexible because of the felt needs of the WS seems to be visiting yet another cruelty upon the BS. It’s as if your child was mauled and permanently scarred and disfigured by your brother’s pit bull. You demand that your brother immediately have the dog put down. But he asks if, first, he could keep the dog at a friend’s house nearby and see it once in a while in order to process his feelings about it. Wouldn’t you look at your child who’s now missing an eye and part of her nose and chin and ask your brother, “Do you love or care at all about your niece? Put the damn dog down before this happens again!” If he replied, “Your preventing me from working through my emotions about ol’ Rex is probably the same level of insensitivity as if I told you to ‘just get over it’ about your daughter being mauled.” wouldn’t you repeatedly punch him in the face?

To think such a thing is to equivocate to some degree between the girl’s mauling and your brother’s losing his dog. Regarding the subject at hand, what you’ve suggested equivocates between the pain you and your AP have caused your husband and your difficulty in processing emotions for another man that should never have been allowed, by you, to rise to a level that required processing. The comparison won’t sit well and easy with too many BSs.

BH, 5+ Mo EA, DDay 3/8/18
"...regarding all as God after God."
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