Reese
Hi there,

My WH has not seen our children in almost 9 weeks. I outed him and his AP to their families about 6 weeks ago. He stopped speaking to myself and our children entirely. About 3 weeks ago I believe his AP broke up with him but I am not certain. My WH recently (2 days ago) drove out to my brother's house with a really lame excuse to basically tell him that he is depressed and wishes we could have worked things out but that I refuse to accept responsibility for things I was at fault for. 
I still have not heard from him. I don't know why he went to my brother to tell him that. My friends tell me not to let it bother me but it really does. I begged him to work things out. 
What I see is him still trying to blame me. I see him actually being depressed but because of the mess he has made. He has made no attempt to see our children or help us financially even though he is court ordered. 
My question is could he be coming out of the fog? Or is this just an attempt to mess with my head further? 
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hurting
I’m sorry he has been such a nob. 

My take on it, especially if he hasn’t even had the guts to approach you and is that no he isn’t out of the fog. If his AP has broken up with him, then he is starting to feel like a fool but is not taking any responsibility for his actions by trying to place the blame on you. 

He doesn’t have the guts to come and see you. So he went indirectly to your brother knowing he would pass on the information to you. What a second rate cowardly approach to trying to tell you he’s available again. 
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ThrivenotSurvive
I 100% agree with Hurting.  And even if you THINK there is a chance you might be willing to take him back - do NOT reach out first.  Under no circumstances.  He needs to realize that this is HIS fault, he has humiliated HIMSELF and be ready to accept full responsibility.

Even then you may not have any desire to take him back and certainly someone who has gone MIA on his kids because of his own shame is no great prize.  But  that is all up to you.  Just make sure that you don't even entertain the thought until he is ready to be humble and 100% of the responsibility for HIS choices.  Anything less makes reconciliation inadvisable and nearly impossible.  
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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Vanessa
Reese -
YOU are NOT at fault for his cheating.  Period.  You could have been the best spouse ever, a mediocre spouse or a horrible spouse, but the CHOICE to cheat was HIS alone and due to his personal issues.  Nothing you did or did not do CAUSED him to cheat.  Remind yourself of this every day until you believe it (it took me a LONG time to really believe it)

He is clearly blame shifting so that he can play the victim.  That is so much more appealing than the role of an idiot who blew up his family.  My own WS did this and it was SO frustrating!  He told a mutual friend "I messed up and Vanessa won't take me back."  That was total poppycock. I would have taken him back in a flash, but he never wanted to come back (well not if coming back meant no more AP). 

For a couple of years (yes about 2 years - ugh) all I wanted was for him to "wake up" and realize what he lost and make the effort to rebuild.  Now at almost 4 years out from Dday, I am thankful that he is someone else's burden.  The fact that he decided to sleep with a co-worker, when he claimed to both me and her, to be "happily married" because he wanted a little "fun on the road" tells me that he is not a worthy partner for ME.  He did not tell me he was "unhappy" or that we should do some work on "us" - he just sought out and got involved with a co-worker.  What kind of prize is that? 

It's time for the rose colored glasses to come off, Reese - YOU deserve better!  I know you love him and it hurts like nothing else - but the question is not do you meet his needs - but does HE MEET YOURS?  Is this all you want and expect from a partner?  Every time they do this kind of stuff you need to ask yourself, is this behavior acceptable TO ME? 

Hugs on this painful journey
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Fionarob
Totally agree with all of the above.  It was a real game-changer for me once I started to ask myself if I actually wanted a man that could do all the things he (my ex) had done, to me, to my children, even to the AP.  He treated us all badly in some way.  I no longer respected him, trusted him, liked him.  I realised that was the reason I didn't want to give him any more chances. Because of the person I could see he was.  It made a huge difference to how I then went forward, I saw everything from a new perspective and it really helped me.
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Reese
We ran into my husband yesterday. Fairly certain it was planned by my brother and WH. Visited with the kids for a whole 25 minutes. He Volunteered so much information including that he's working again, where, his schedule- that he'll have weekends off and only working in town- no more traveling, said he'll be helping financially and even planned a visit for this coming weekend with the children and told them he would bring some meat from his recent hunt. Asked me if it was okay and I agreed. Told me he would text me to plan it last night but I never heard from him. I'm worried he will bail again. To top it off, I have to travel out of state with our two youngest to see a specialist for our child who has been sick much of the last year. 

I'm struggling so bad today. I'm stressed- will be traveling with a 4&1 year old. Plus, he seemed different, lots of eye contact and almost like he wanted my approval yesterday. I was polite but mostly smiled and nodded. I'm still so angry and so hurt. I thought I was doing okay but I'm not. I had to text him regarding this trip and what do you know, no response at all. Our daughter has been asking since she woke up today to see Daddy. 

I wish I could forget him. He abandoned our family and I am struggling to accept it. The lump in my throat is so prevalent and I'm just trying to hold it together. 
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ThrivenotSurvive
He was probably hoping from more of a reaction from you and is now ghosting you in shame and fear that he's blown up his life.  I am so sorry, but I think you NEED to let him simmer for a while.  There is only one way to any form of meaningful reconciliation (if that ts even what you want).  And that is him, being 100% ready to own this mess.  No blame shifting, no unmet needs, no anything but - I did wrong.  

Remember that you didn't go start an affair when you were feeling taken for granted or unappreciated.  So whatever his "reasons" are - they aren't dood enough.  They were good enough to ask for changes, they were possibly good enough to demand couples counseling or even possibly good enough to consider leaving.  They were NEVER good enough to lie to you or change the rules of your marriage without your consent of knowledge.  

And if he can't see that, and be willing to own it and change the thought patterns and habits that led him to think that was a reasonable solution, you are better off without him. 
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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Reese
Thank you Thrive.

My best friend pretty much told me the exact same thing. I appreciate the words of wisdom so so much. ❤
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hurting
100% what Thrive said! 

He needs to swallow his pride and shame and accept that this was entirely his fault. I would probably have told your brother that I do not appreciate the interference and to let your WS deal with this on his own. 

I get the feeling he’s testing the waters. He wants to see whether you all want him back. And he is using the children as a means to do so. But using them like that then letting them down again by not showing is just cruel to them, and to you. 

Being polite and nothing more is the perfect response to him. It is hard, but you’re doing great.
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UrbanExplorer
When you're in an affair, especially if you are a person with a conscience who wouldn't ordinarily do something like that, you HAVE TO convince yourself that the affair in your special case is justified (by something missing into the marital relationship, usually). It takes a bit to let go of that ego defense and truly see what you have done. 

Things were going on in my marriage that I used as justification for my affair. Some of them still happen, because my BS is not perfect and neither am I. However, instead of hiding out by sneaking around with someone else, I'm upfront with it like a healthy adult. I'm responsible for myself. Your WS is also responsible for himself and his choices.
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Reese
My WH did not follow through on a visit. I've tried contacting him to see the children and most everything goes unanswered. We normally do a family Halloween costume and lots of fun activities, the only response I have received has been about that when I mentioned the children want to know if we can plan Halloween together. He said, "Halloween would be good I think." Nothing else at all. If he goes until Halloween to see them it will have been like 14 weeks without a regular visit. I just don't understand. I spoke to his mother recently and she told me he's really struggling. But with what? She did not elaborate. Also October 10th is our wedding anniversary. Maybe he's avoiding us because of that? This is all so frustrating. Him ignoring me makes me feel like I'm at fault. I know I'm not but that's what it does to me. Ignoring the kids does the same to them. 

He did give me a half a$$ed apology about a week ago. Maybe he's coming out of it? Idk. I feel like I'm slamming my head on a desk. 🤦‍♀️
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Reese
Update, he text me yesterday asking if we could do a visit today however we ran into him again and visited yesterday. We also talked. The children and I will be moving and so we need to decide what we are going to do, be, etc. We discussed reconciliation to some extent, he told me he needs a couple of days to try to clear his head. Told me his head is a complete mess and how much he hates himself. He asked if we could spend time together this weekend with the children and discuss reconciliation more then. He told me he is no longer involved or in contact with his AP. 

I can see he is full of self loathing. I can tell he is struggling to accept that he is both a good man, husband, father with morals and also the person who has done all of these things. What can I do to help him? We discussed what would need to happen to reconcile, he agreed on it all. I think he's terrified to have to disclose what he's done to me as well. I do think he recognizes my love/ability to forgive though. 

He told me about changes he's making, things I had been begging for from him for a long time. I think this is all a step in the right direction. Any help on what I can do to encourage reconciliation is greatly appreciated. I want my husband and my family back together. He made some really REALLY poor choices and hurt me and the kids but I also know the other side of him and recognize the issues that led us down this path. The affair was absolutely 100% on him but the failures in our marriage were both of ours. I just want to fix it and I think he does too.
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anthro
Reese wrote:
He told me about changes he's making, things I had been begging for from him for a long time. I think this is all a step in the right direction.


Just beware that it's very easy for him to talk the talk.Walking the walk is a very different animal. I am not saying he won't, but the fact that he is saying he's doing this is about 0.001% of what you need.
Formerly known as Anthropoidape... male bs, long affair, d-day Feb 2017.
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ThrivenotSurvive
Be painfully honest with yourself and him.  In the initial stages of reconciliation sometimes our need to put our life back to one we recognize is so strong that we give our WS a bit too much of a "pass".  You don't ask questions that you need answered because you don't want to send them into a shame spiral, you try to act like everything is normal around everyone, or you rush to assure them of you undying love, etc.  

While in the short term it may make things feel calmer and better  - this will NOT serve you or him in the long run.  There are clearly issues in HIM that need to be addressed - and from what you've said you feel there were some things that need to be addressed in the marriage itself. 

Be sure that both you and HE are clear on this - your marital problems did not CAUSE him to cheat.  He had a LOT of other far more reasonable alternatives to addressing anything in your marriage that made him unhappy.  If your car starts acting up, you take it to the repair shop,  You don't decide to hell with it, blow it up, steal a car and start driving it.  When you are unhappy in your marriage, you talk about it, ask for marriage counseling, ask for a separation if that doesn't work, etc.  You don't have an affair.

You may have contributed to a marriage that was more VULNERABLE to an affair - but that is IT  This is important, because if you allow either HIM or YOU to start blame shifting at any point, it will hurt your reconciliation.  

As long as you are BOTH clear on that, then you can start with the next steps.  I highly suggest working through some of Tim's online classes (the founder of this forum.) Your husband is going to need to do some very uncomfortable self-reflection within himself and figure out the thought patterns and justifications that led him to where he is at right now.  He (and you) need to understand his real reasons "why" and what he can heal/change to make sure those why's don't come back to haunt you again  Just saying "I'd never do that again" is NOT enough.  I am fairly sure he would have told you a year ago that he wouldn't "ever" have an affair. - but he did.  DON'T skip this step - I have never seen a really successful, happy recovery that has. If he'd prefer to go to individual counseling to figure it out - fine.  If he'd prefer to work through the online resources - that's fine.  What is not fine is not doing it.  

While he's working on that - you need to really look at your marriage from YOUR perspective.  Typically the WS wasn't the only one not feeling 100% happy - but the BS handled it differently  If you are rebuilding this marriage - make sure it is one that incorporates not just HIS unmet needs - but YOURS as well.  This is the time to own your truth.  Be kind in your expression - but be honest about what you are feeling, your anger, your fears, the demons you fight in your head because he made you feel less than.  If he isn't man enough to own it and help you heal it, there isn't a future with him.  

Ask him to read Linda MacDonald's book "How to Help Your Spouse Heal from Your Affair" - it will help guide him in what he needs to be prepared to do to save this marriage. This is just a start.  But if you keep moving through Tim's classes one by one, it will help guide you through some important milestones.  

You should also consider individual counseling for yourself - and marriage counseling for the two of you.  Rebuilding a better marriage after betrayal is HARD work, but you can do it.  

My biggest piece of advice is don't try to rush it.  And do not try "fix" everything for him - or try to make it so easy on him that he ends up not really taking a long, hard look at himself and making LASTING changes.    Hope some of this helps...
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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Reese
HELP!

My wayward husband has confessed about the affair. Claims there is no more contact and that he ended it. He's answered many of my questions but pretty well shut down when I asked him about sexual things. He told me he hates himself for what he's done and all the pain he's caused. He told me he doesn't want a divorce that he'll do the work to reconcile, but asked that I be patient because he's struggling to accept who he is and what he's done and discussing the details with me makes him so beyond uncomfortable. He says he's all in, wants me and our family etc. Tells me he loves me. 

Has not given me the login to his phone to verify if/when contact was cut. I stated this is something I need to even start trying to rebuild. He understands and agrees but hasn't done it. 

I just got word that there will be a hearing very soon at which I will be granted divorce. This was set after we started discussing reconciliation. I have made it clear to him that I need a reason,  something to go on to push it because I do not want to be played any longer. He understands and agrees but yet hasn't provided the login for the phone. I know he was in contact with her longer than he said he was but I think he is afraid for me to see how long, and who ended contact. I do know they are no longer together though. 

I know he is ashamed and struggling but we don't have much time. I don't know if there's any real reason to push it or not. We have made great leaps and bounds so far but we're still a ways out. Not living together right now but plan to if we can keep making progress. 

Is this normal in this situation? Does the wayward fully want to reconcile but allow shame to complicate the confession and progress? Or am I being fed a bunch of bull? I will note that I do believe he is genuine but absolutely lost right now. Also even friends and family have noted a great difference in his behavior, back to who he was before the affair started. 

I will note too that I do want to reconcile. That I am past being angry and just want us to heal. 

Thanks friends. 🌻
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