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Kalmarjan
Guiltguilt wrote:
There was a bloke here when I got here who said “Love is an action”.


I think that may have been me. The quote is "Love is a Verb." Sometimes I have to remind myself about that. 

As for if things get better, or if we make it? 

I'm not sure how to answer without a clarifying question. What does "make it" mean to you? 

Affairs change the marriage, that can't be denied. For me the outcome came from consciously moving towards my wife, understanding how she felt. By understanding the impact of my action, I was able to see what I needed to do to make the situation right. 

Unfortunately I don't think it's the same remedy for everyone, but the start of it was the same. Listening with the intent to understand is the single best piece of advice I could give anyone. 

Oh, and perhaps grow up. For the WS out there, it's been about you long enough. It's time it was about your BS. Check your ego, and your excuses at the door.
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Guiltguilt
It just might have been you! Great to see you’re going well. 
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Jennifer
Hello all,

I have posted before about my story but I am one of the ones that "made" it. We are 7 years post DDay and I can say like some of the others that my husband's affair changed me, him, and our marriage. It has not been an easy road and we have had many ups and downs along the way. I can say that I feel our relationship is in most ways stronger and better than before. While I can never forget what happened, I choose to focus on the lessons learned. That is the biggest reason why I went back to school to become a counselor, so I could help others who have gone through this as well. I think many of the forum users that have made do eventually stop posting as they move forward with healing but they are still there.

Seven years later...when I tell my story it often feels like I am talking about other people. We are so different from what we were before. I do not have constant triggers nor do I check phones or emails often.  I don't feel the anger anymore and I can watch TV shows or hear other people speak of infidelity without it bringing up the pain again. It does get better one breath at a time.

It does get easy over time with the right amount of work thrown in. I agree that it is easier to leave than to stay and have to live with everything but that is not the right choice for everyone. I believe there is strength in staying and strength in leaving. Many of you are still early in the process and I know how badly you wish to fast forward through this. Be patient with yourselves and know that you are stronger than you may think you are right now.
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scrappylucie
Hi, 
I’m not sure if you’d classify us as having “ made it “ but we’re certainly in a much better place than just over 2 years ago. 
The first years was HELL! I lost it completely when I discovered his long term affair- I probably did everything you shouldn’t do, the second year was up and down - again I was treading water the bulk of the time, hovering between rage, tears, throwing him out and wanting it to work. So what happened? He- WS went and got us marriage counseling and individual counseling- he knew it was that or we split. I was at my wits end and so was he. Trust me I was no picnic to live with, granted what he did was reprehensible but how long could anyone take the rage, hate and blame I was throwing at him, change doesn’t come from that, healing doesn’t come from that. I was hyper focused on the affair- it was a constant running in the background tainting everything. I HAD TO GET BETTER IN ORDER TO SEE WHAT I REALLY WANTED AND HOW TO GET THERE. 
I cant stress counseling enough!!
indivigual to work on you and when your ready in baby steps - couples, we each go once a week for ourselves and now once a week together and will be moving to 2 week intervals soon. We’ve come along way- I’ve come a long way, if our marriage fails it will not be because of the affair. To me that statement makes me think we made it. 
Heal yourself first!
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stillme
My opinion is that people can stay together and tell themselves they are 'stronger' or 'happier', but I can't see how that is the case. I am 18 months post d-day and see affairs for what they are - abuse. The WS emotionally abuses the faithful spouse by lying and gaslighting, physically abuses the faithful spouse by potentially exposing them to STDs/STIs, and psychologically abuses the faithful spouse by taking away a sense of security and safety.

If my husband punched me in the face daily, no one would question if that was abusive. And, everyone would see me as a fool for declaring that I now trust him 100% because he confessed and said sorry. While it wasn't a physical punch in the face, my WS's behavior did have a very real physical affect on me - headaches, anxiety, not eating right, not sleeping right, depression.

We still live in the same house, but beyond that - there is nothing. I personally am not interested in falling madly in love with someone that can look me in the eyes and lie with ease. I would be a fool to 100% trust someone who betrayed my trust in him for years. He allowed me to disbelieve my gut, making me not trust myself and not protect myself. I put my trust in him before and the cost was way too great.

Do I think he is doing those same things? Well, I don't see any signs, but - maybe he just got better at hiding them. But, I know there is no way on earth I will completely trust him again. I fell down such a deep and dark well when I found out about his betrayal and I will never allow myself to get that depressed ever again. There were moments when I welcomed death, because I just could not believe the only person in the world I trusted with my heart had betrayed me like that.

He lied to me with ease for five years, why would I allow myself to believe that he went from being a very good liar to all of sudden telling to truth without fail? We are "married", we live in the same house, we co-parent, but I am absolutely not happy. The truth is, I don't want this relationship. I just really don't want to be married to a liar. But, I stay 'for the kids' and count this time as my own private purgatory. I have told him in no uncertain terms that I just could never look at him the same way again and asked repeatedly for divorce. He doesn't 'believe in divorce' and is unwilling to sign paperwork and is instead floating around the house talking about 'winning my heart back'. 

The winning back part should have come five years ago when I first saw a change in him and asked if we could possibly go to marriage counseling. He said no, said he was incredibly happy and that I was the love of his life. While he was secretly spending thousands on porn and falling in love with webcam girls. Once he 'progressed' to massage parlors, he got to act out all those fantasies he had. He is 'dedicated' to the marriage because he realizes prostitutes aren't as fun as they seem. Why would I give my entire heart back to someone that has to do stupid stuff to realize stupid stuff is bad?

My husband comes from a family full of unhappily married people. His parents have been 'married' for almost 50 years. They hate each other and are barely in the same room, but everyone fawns over the fact that they have been married so long. So, he is perfectly content with living this way until we die. He is a good enough father (now that he isn't spending college fund money on porn), so I can live this way until I know the children can take a divorce. I tried to put him out before and the children did not take it well at all, especially with his sobbing and crying and declarations of love. 

On the outside, everyone around us would say we 'made it'. They would say we were happy and fulfilled. I am not faking it for people, I just don't do drama. I am nice, I don't argue with him, I don't cause scenes, and I don't disrespect him. If I cared less about myself I would take his outward antics as signs of a changed man and jump right in. But, I do care about myself enough to know that this is a man that can lie with ease, knows how to delete internet information, knows how to cover his tracks, and has had no problem crossing lines he declared he would never cross in the past.

Everyone I know that has 'made it' has a relationship like my in-laws, they throw big anniversary parties and love it up for the crowds - then go to their separate corners when all the crowds are gone. I didn't even acknowledge our 14th anniversary two months ago. Why pretend?
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TimT
One story:  http://www.affairhealing.com/podcast209.html
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jmh78
stillme wrote:
My opinion is that people can stay together and tell themselves they are 'stronger' or 'happier', but I can't see how that is the case. I am 18 months post d-day and see affairs for what they are - abuse. The WS emotionally abuses the faithful spouse by lying and gaslighting, physically abuses the faithful spouse by potentially exposing them to STDs/STIs, and psychologically abuses the faithful spouse by taking away a sense of security and safety.

If my husband punched me in the face daily, no one would question if that was abusive. And, everyone would see me as a fool for declaring that I now trust him 100% because he confessed and said sorry. While it wasn't a physical punch in the face, my WS's behavior did have a very real physical affect on me - headaches, anxiety, not eating right, not sleeping right, depression.

We still live in the same house, but beyond that - there is nothing. I personally am not interested in falling madly in love with someone that can look me in the eyes and lie with ease. I would be a fool to 100% trust someone who betrayed my trust in him for years. He allowed me to disbelieve my gut, making me not trust myself and not protect myself. I put my trust in him before and the cost was way too great.

Do I think he is doing those same things? Well, I don't see any signs, but - maybe he just got better at hiding them. But, I know there is no way on earth I will completely trust him again. I fell down such a deep and dark well when I found out about his betrayal and I will never allow myself to get that depressed ever again. There were moments when I welcomed death, because I just could not believe the only person in the world I trusted with my heart had betrayed me like that.

He lied to me with ease for five years, why would I allow myself to believe that he went from being a very good liar to all of sudden telling to truth without fail? We are "married", we live in the same house, we co-parent, but I am absolutely not happy. The truth is, I don't want this relationship. I just really don't want to be married to a liar. But, I stay 'for the kids' and count this time as my own private purgatory. I have told him in no uncertain terms that I just could never look at him the same way again and asked repeatedly for divorce. He doesn't 'believe in divorce' and is unwilling to sign paperwork and is instead floating around the house talking about 'winning my heart back'. 

The winning back part should have come five years ago when I first saw a change in him and asked if we could possibly go to marriage counseling. He said no, said he was incredibly happy and that I was the love of his life. While he was secretly spending thousands on porn and falling in love with webcam girls. Once he 'progressed' to massage parlors, he got to act out all those fantasies he had. He is 'dedicated' to the marriage because he realizes prostitutes aren't as fun as they seem. Why would I give my entire heart back to someone that has to do stupid stuff to realize stupid stuff is bad?

My husband comes from a family full of unhappily married people. His parents have been 'married' for almost 50 years. They hate each other and are barely in the same room, but everyone fawns over the fact that they have been married so long. So, he is perfectly content with living this way until we die. He is a good enough father (now that he isn't spending college fund money on porn), so I can live this way until I know the children can take a divorce. I tried to put him out before and the children did not take it well at all, especially with his sobbing and crying and declarations of love. 

On the outside, everyone around us would say we 'made it'. They would say we were happy and fulfilled. I am not faking it for people, I just don't do drama. I am nice, I don't argue with him, I don't cause scenes, and I don't disrespect him. If I cared less about myself I would take his outward antics as signs of a changed man and jump right in. But, I do care about myself enough to know that this is a man that can lie with ease, knows how to delete internet information, knows how to cover his tracks, and has had no problem crossing lines he declared he would never cross in the past.

Everyone I know that has 'made it' has a relationship like my in-laws, they throw big anniversary parties and love it up for the crowds - then go to their separate corners when all the crowds are gone. I didn't even acknowledge our 14th anniversary two months ago. Why pretend?


Stillme, I’m sorry you are in such pain and have endured so much.  I am a betrayed spouse so I can empathize with the pain.

i can almost assure you that your husband’s behavior was due to his brokenness.  It wasn’t about you and it wasn’t a personal attack on you.  Yes, you are right not to trust him.  Trust is earned and he apparently hasn’t done that yet.

I do not believe in divorce either, but that belief also assumes that people are going to heal and rebuild the marital relationship.  If you are not willing to do that I think the conventional wisdom would say you might be doing your children more harm than good by staying married and maintaining the status quo.

Closing your heart off to love, in an effort to protect yourself, is not good for you and is not a good way to model life for your children.  You can see from your husband’s family that these things tend to be generational and I’m sure you don’t want this for your children.

I think the best thing for your children is to fully reconcile with your husband.  This would involve him getting healthy himself and being safe for you.  It would also include you forgiving and letting go of your pain so that you can be vulnerable.  You cannot truly love or be truly loved unless you allow yourself to get hurt again.  Reconciling with your husband would teach your children that while people do bad things and hurt others, forgiveness is a gift that we give ourselves in addition to those who have hurt us.  It also shows them that no one is perfect and we can still love even when they hurt us.

If reconciling is not an option for you because your husband is not safe or you cannot forgive, then maybe divorce is the better option.  If you want to divorce I don’t believe there is any legal way for your husband to stop it from happening.
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stillme
jmh78 wrote:


Stillme, I’m sorry you are in such pain and have endured so much.  I am a betrayed spouse so I can empathize with the pain.

i can almost assure you that your husband’s behavior was due to his brokenness.  It wasn’t about you and it wasn’t a personal attack on you.  Yes, you are right not to trust him.  Trust is earned and he apparently hasn’t done that yet.

I do not believe in divorce either, but that belief also assumes that people are going to heal and rebuild the marital relationship.  If you are not willing to do that I think the conventional wisdom would say you might be doing your children more harm than good by staying married and maintaining the status quo.

Closing your heart off to love, in an effort to protect yourself, is not good for you and is not a good way to model life for your children.  You can see from your husband’s family that these things tend to be generational and I’m sure you don’t want this for your children.

I think the best thing for your children is to fully reconcile with your husband.  This would involve him getting healthy himself and being safe for you.  It would also include you forgiving and letting go of your pain so that you can be vulnerable.  You cannot truly love or be truly loved unless you allow yourself to get hurt again.  Reconciling with your husband would teach your children that while people do bad things and hurt others, forgiveness is a gift that we give ourselves in addition to those who have hurt us.  It also shows them that no one is perfect and we can still love even when they hurt us.

If reconciling is not an option for you because your husband is not safe or you cannot forgive, then maybe divorce is the better option.  If you want to divorce I don’t believe there is any legal way for your husband to stop it from happening.


My husband cannot legally stop the divorce, but he can make it overwhelmingly expensive. 

I am actually fully okay about not 'falling in love' again. I am a great parent, I have a wonderful relationship with my family, and I have satisfying friendships. I don't need a spouse to be fulfilled. 

No, not going to trust someone that could have literally killed me by picking up an incurable and deadly sexually transmitted disease due to having sex with prostitutes. No, I am not going to trust someone that spent thousands of dollars of money that should have been used to send our children to college on porn. If he can not only hurt his wife, but hurt his own children, for his own sexual gratification, no - he should not be trusted.

My goal is to show my children that there are consequences for actions and that abuse is not okay. My husband may not have been beating me, but lying, gaslighting, and deception were still types of abuse. No, I am not going to tell my children that should stay in abusive relationships. I am trying to show my children they can get away from abusive people, but my husband refusing to sign divorce papers means I have to use even more money to now fight a contested divorce.

But, I get the perception that I am the 'bad guy' and I expected responses such as this one. My ability to forgive is not the issue, my willingness to NOT stay in an abusive relationship is. And yes, I may be in the minority, but I absolutely feel that lying and depiction are forms of abuse.  
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jmh78
stillme wrote:


But, I get the perception that I am the 'bad guy' and I expected responses such as this one. My ability to forgive is not the issue, my willingness to NOT stay in an abusive relationship is.


You’re not the “bad guy” and my intention was not to sound “holier than though”, so I apologize.  I’m not judging you, and I am not familiar with your story beyond this post so I’m missing lots of important information, but I think we all have blind spots and its helpful when others help us to see them.  

Are you separated?  I got the impression you were still living together.  Isn’t that staying in the relationship to some degree?  Are you modeling for your children a dysfunctional marriage that could potentially affect their future relationships?
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stillme
jmh78 wrote:


You’re not the “bad guy” and my intention was not to sound “holier than though”, so I apologize.  I’m not judging you, and I am not familiar with your story beyond this post so I’m missing lots of important information, but I think we all have blind spots and its helpful when others help us to see them.  

Are you separated?  I got the impression you were still living together.  Isn’t that staying in the relationship to some degree?  Are you modeling for your children a dysfunctional marriage that could potentially affect their future relationships?


Yes, we live together, but not by my choice. I have asked him to leave several times. However, a divorce lawyer will always recommend not leaving the home - for men and women. Mainly, the person who leaves the home is less likely to be granted the home in a divorce. It is actually quote common, especially in states like mine. The person who leaves is being seen as 'vacating' the property and are not considered entitled to the property in the divorce settle. So, his lawyer advices him not to leave until a judge signs the decree. My lawyer advices me not to leave with the children, because that would leave me zero chance of being awarded the house in the settlement. 

This is the great revenge of partners that 'don't believe in divorce'. They have the ability to cost the other person thousands upon thousands of dollars fighting them and they can drag a divorce out for years.
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PainfulGrace
I would say that the couples who come through reconciled following infidelity are constantly “making it”, rather than reaching a final point of “having made it”. Meaning, in my opinion, it takes constantly choosing to not get caught up in memories, anger, or resentment, to work through all of those so they aren’t hampering any progress made. Remaining bitter and angry will not lend to a healthy relationship moving forward, although there is valid cause to experience these emotions from time to time, choosing not to wallow and remain there will be for the better. I have chosen to face triggers head on, “reclaiming” places that I knew they went to together that we once enjoyed, now those places are again enjoyable and not a painful reminder. I still experience painful memories but I’m able to dismiss them now where I once would replay them on a loop. We are communicating about things we never did before, we are more aware of making time for ourselves together and individually. While the way I love him looks very different now compared to before the affair, I believe it is better on this side of things. It’s difficult to explain without going on and on, but I believe we are making it- everyday that we choose to move toward each other, everyday that I leave a painful memory behind in stress of letting it destroy my mood, everyday that he is more open and loving, every time he moves toward my struggling/anger/hurt/etc with love, and understanding and looks for ways to reassure and comfort my fears, everyday that we communicate with one another, everyday that we make the choice to love each other and focus on the present and the future rather than the things of the past is what I consider successfully making it. Like I said before, I don’t know if there is such a thing as having made it, that sounds like reaching a final point where the pain and history cease to affect you... I don’t think that something as life changing as infidelity can ever be completely left behind, but rather choosing to not let it define every moment moving forward, and choosing to find the good, because it is there... that’s making it. It is possible!! Both partners have to be committed, both partners need to be able to communicate and forgive, both must understand that it is hard, so so hard, but so incredibly worth it!
I hope this gives some of you a glimmer of hope❤️



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DorothyJane7
PainfulGrace wrote:
I would say that the couples who come through reconciled following infidelity are constantly “making it”, rather than reaching a final point of “having made it”. Meaning, in my opinion, it takes constantly choosing to not get caught up in memories, anger, or resentment, to work through all of those so they aren’t hampering any progress made. Remaining bitter and angry will not lend to a healthy relationship moving forward, although there is valid cause to experience these emotions from time to time, choosing not to wallow and remain there will be for the better. I have chosen to face triggers head on, “reclaiming” places that I knew they went to together that we once enjoyed, now those places are again enjoyable and not a painful reminder. I still experience painful memories but I’m able to dismiss them now where I once would replay them on a loop. We are communicating about things we never did before, we are more aware of making time for ourselves together and individually. While the way I love him looks very different now compared to before the affair, I believe it is better on this side of things. It’s difficult to explain without going on and on, but I believe we are making it- everyday that we choose to move toward each other, everyday that I leave a painful memory behind in stress of letting it destroy my mood, everyday that he is more open and loving, every time he moves toward my struggling/anger/hurt/etc with love, and understanding and looks for ways to reassure and comfort my fears, everyday that we communicate with one another, everyday that we make the choice to love each other and focus on the present and the future rather than the things of the past is what I consider successfully making it. Like I said before, I don’t know if there is such a thing as having made it, that sounds like reaching a final point where the pain and history cease to affect you... I don’t think that something as life changing as infidelity can ever be completely left behind, but rather choosing to not let it define every moment moving forward, and choosing to find the good, because it is there... that’s making it. It is possible!! Both partners have to be committed, both partners need to be able to communicate and forgive, both must understand that it is hard, so so hard, but so incredibly worth it!
I hope this gives some of you a glimmer of hope❤️



thank you. I needed to hear that. Still a roller coaster down here. Currently the clouds are hovering. 
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anthropoidape
stillme wrote:
My goal is to show my children that there are consequences for actions and that abuse is not okay. My husband may not have been beating me, but lying, gaslighting, and deception were still types of abuse. No, I am not going to tell my children that should stay in abusive relationships. I am trying to show my children they can get away from abusive people, but my husband refusing to sign divorce papers means I have to use even more money to now fight a contested divorce.

But, I get the perception that I am the 'bad guy' and I expected responses such as this one. My ability to forgive is not the issue, my willingness to NOT stay in an abusive relationship is. And yes, I may be in the minority, but I absolutely feel that lying and depiction are forms of abuse.  


In no way are you the bad guy. 

But you are going to waste your only life this way. Can you find a new attorney and get things moving, by hook or by crook? Losing money is bad, that is for sure, but you are living in miserable bondage as you are. 
Maybe it is okay, maybe it will be okay.

BS, d-day Feb 2017, 16 mth affair.
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Keepabuzz
stillme wrote:
My opinion is that people can stay together and tell themselves they are 'stronger' or 'happier', but I can't see how that is the case. I am 18 months post d-day and see affairs for what they are - abuse. The WS emotionally abuses the faithful spouse by lying and gaslighting, physically abuses the faithful spouse by potentially exposing them to STDs/STIs, and psychologically abuses the faithful spouse by taking away a sense of security and safety.

If my husband punched me in the face daily, no one would question if that was abusive. And, everyone would see me as a fool for declaring that I now trust him 100% because he confessed and said sorry. While it wasn't a physical punch in the face, my WS's behavior did have a very real physical affect on me - headaches, anxiety, not eating right, not sleeping right, depression.


Infedelity and all that comes with it is without a doubt abuse. All the things you mentioned here are abuse. I have made that assertion here many times. I find it very odd that every other form of abuse, as well as the same types of abuse when not tied to infidelity are acceptable AND encouraged reasons for immediately leaving a relationship, and if you don’t you’re a fool. BUT when these types of abuse are involved with infidelity, then it’s acceptable, and often encouraged to give them another chance. It’s actually very strange if you think about it. 

I know your pain, rage, and hurt very well. You are not the bad guy. It is PERFECTLY acceptable to “not” be able to forgive your WS. It’s PERFECTLY acceptable to dovorce your WS. Infidelity does NOT “deserve” forgiveness, even though many choose to grant it.  

I think what is not acceptable is to stay in misery. You have suffered enough. Do what is best for YOU. You are the only one that will always take care of you. Divorce isn’t great for kids, but neither is a mother who is miserable. 

You arent alone. Many of us know exactly how you feel. 
Male BS, D-day July 2015, trying to stay out of the dark.....
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arizons
Its hard, some days are better than other. Yes, I still have emotional triggers, Yes many times I have to work through anxiety and force myself not to make hasty choices but to trust sound mental judgement. Its been 7 months since my husbands affair ended. Every day is eaiser...and I am hopful for the future..
Female BS, D-day 1/03/2017, 
I'm going to rebuild me like a remix,

and raise my soul like a Phoenix 
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