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Sparkle
This spoke to me big time Anthro.
I don't think I'm a narcissist by the way (after reading the definition)
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Sparkle
At the same time Anthro- i do not at any time think that what i did was ok, I just didn't have the courage to stop.
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anthropoidape
Sparkle wrote:
This spoke to me big time Anthro.
I don't think I'm a narcissist by the way (after reading the definition)


I believe you. Then again I think it's fair to say that people who have affairs tend to be more narcissistic than those who don't. I have noticed in a lot of cases subtle differences in perspective that show higher self-focus like, "when will I see my children again" as opposed to "how will my children cope with not seeing me". Not a big thing in itself but lots of the subtle things add up to paint a picture.
Maybe it is okay, maybe it will be okay.

BS, d-day Feb 2017, 16 mth affair.
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Sparkle
Perhaps i am more narcissistic than the next person then. Not sure really. I was obviously very selfish on this occasion.
I can offer explanations but when I do some people think I'm saying that I have an excuse to be unfaithful- which I'm not. I know one person said it helps them to see how the WS thinks though.
I've had counselling many times in my life for various issues and what always comes out is my low self esteem. I'm wondering whether someone who thought more of themselves wouldn't feel the need to seek affirmation elsewhere when they aren't getting it in their marriage. Again not a excuse. Just trying to sort my head out.
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anthropoidape
Sparkle wrote:
Perhaps i am more narcissistic than the next person then. Not sure really. I was obviously very selfish on this occasion..


I think your case is more understandable than most. And a good path forward for you is harder to discern than most too. 

For me personally... there was no justification at all for what my wife did. I accept that we had issues on both sides and might have been heading for separation. If she'd left me after talking things over and trying for our kids' sake I would have seen no moral problem with her doing so.

The issue of course is that all the explanations are reasons why the WS is unhappy, unfulfilled, dissatisfied etc. They may be totally valid explanations for unhappiness and ultimately for separating. They aren't explanations for lying, cheating, stealing, promise-breaking, using, or just wasting years of someone else's life. Nor are they explanations for putting a lethal time bomb in the middle of a family and putting children's wellbeing at risk.

You are however a little more trapped than most people and your husband is apparently an unusual case. So, maybe your explanations can carry you a bit further than they would for others. I also feel that to some extent your husband is reaping what he sowed by telling you he doesn't love you and only married you because he thought you'd be a good pragmatic choice (if I have remembered that right.) To my mind it is quite dishonest to marry someone on that basis without disclosing it first.

Anyway, it's not my business but I fear that you are throwing your life away.

(Side note... if you knew the full story of my wife's affair, what you've done is about as bad by comparison as returning a library book late.)
Maybe it is okay, maybe it will be okay.

BS, d-day Feb 2017, 16 mth affair.
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Sparkle
Bless you Anthro. 
No explanations are not excuses for promise breaking cheating and lying etc.
I think for anyone it's obviously the right thing to do to discuss your differences then decide where to go from there.
I don't know what happened in detail but you seem to have had a terrible time made worse by the worry of how to avoid hurting your children.
It's probably of little consolation but I'm sure the people on here find your help invaluable. It's such a gift to be able to put yourself in another's shoes when you have been treated so badly yourself.
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Sparkle
I can see how it appears I am throwing my life away Anthro but it will be ok. I have many blessings in life to concentrate on aside from my marriage.
Like I have said before- I need to think of the children and aside from my religious beliefs I could not look after them by myself if we were to separate. 
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Sparkle
Also- when my husband gave me reasons for marrying I think he honestly believes they are the correct reasons for choosing someone. He believes feelings are not that important as they can fluctuate whereas a commitment to be a 'team' together is a  more solid basis for a marriage.
For me it is a combination of the two.
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Kiki
 
anthropoidape
In a totally different context, I read an interesting line the other day. It was to the effect of, "Like all immorality, it begins with making an exception for yourself." It's uncanny really. I mean everybody knows that cheating and lying are wrong, and that all of society despises cheats and liars. But they somehow see their cheating and lying as exceptional. This is why it tends to be an act committed by narcissists; they are people who are willing to believe they are above everyone else and subject to different rules. 



Thank you for that.   I am going to keep that in my back pocket. I will use it when my WH rants about what a terrible wife I was and blames me for his affair.
D-Day#1 Dec 19, 2017
D-Day#2 Jan 13, 2018
5 year “on/off affair”
Separated

Married 25 years, together 35
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