KristinG Show full post »
anthro

Actually that’s if I responded at all.  Receiving those messages after proof of the affair (physical and emotional) is still going on after all this time would have likely been the death knell for me.  It seems both audacious AND ridiculous (hurting people is not how normal people show love!) as well as painfully selfish. 

Please take a step and look at this scenario as if it is happening to a friend of yours.  I think you’d see it quite a bit differently.  Those texts are actually quite manipulative and off-putting. 

I think this is the key. Engagement even in the form of a message that really just states the obvious is still engagement, and engagement is something this person is not entitled to. I think it is great to be on friendly terms with an ex. It's great to be grown-up and mature about relationship stuff and not fall prey to jealousy and so on. 

It is also critical though to excise toxic people from your world, and to refuse to engage with people who are dishonest, manipulative, and selfish. The people who are good to have in your life don't cause avalanches of drama and pain to come crashing down on you. You only get one life and the people in it should be the good ones. NO CONTACT. It is hard but when you look back on a few months of no contact, you will know it was the best decision you could make.

Formerly known as Anthropoidape... male bs, long affair, d-day Feb 2017.
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hurting
I’m only popping on quickly because I’m meant to be studying for yet another exam...but I absolutely agree with anthro and thrive. Try to take a step back and see what she’s doing from afar. 

Even ‘friendly texting’ is enabling her. I really do encourage to go no contact period. Try for a day at first. If it’s too hard, just put your phone away or keep it on aeroplane mode or something. 

She will start to freak out more and play up even harder in an effort to reel you back in. The key is to be aware of this so it doesn’t happen. 

You’re doing well in taking baby steps. It’s hard, but we have been in similar situations. This is the only way forward for you...
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Fionarob
She is being very manipulative - please try and take the above advice and stop this 'friendly texting'. 

Until she comes back to you, ends the affair and commits 100% to the marriage, there is no place for friendly texting.  It's manipulation.  As long as she still has you waiting for her, she is in control of everything.  She knows she only has to send a little ILY text and you are there, waiting for her to choose you if/when she decides to.

Meanwhile, she is taking her AP to meet mutual friends at a bonfire..........it's all wrong. 
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triplehooks
KristenG,

You may find HG Tudor's blog or podcast/youtube channel helpful.  Ask yourself how much of her behavior -- if any -- you recognize in his essays/confessions.  He does a great job explaining what's going on underneath the surface of a person manifesting these types of behaviors.  The term he would use to describe what she has on you is her "tendrils" drilled deep into your heart, tendrils she uses to access you at her whimsy to deliver to her the "primary" fuel (which is only one of many sources of fuel she accesses on a daily basis) she requires to propel her through life.  As a reference his musings may give you also a portal into what "might" be going on in the spaces you have no visibility into.

Anyway, if you find any relevance in it, you'll recognize it's these tendrils that need to be removed "toot suite" in order for you to even BEGIN healing yourself.  Uprooting such deep heart attachments can feel excruciating and disruptive, but its  a necessary pain to free yourself of the direct pipeline she has to pump poison/addictive substances directly into your bloodstream.  "Friendly texting" is just a way for her to solidify the tendrils rooted deeply within you, and it's not serving you well right now.  I want to encourage you, like the others above, to slam the phone shut for a bit on this one.  
  
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anthro
Having other people on a string really seems to matter to this personality type, to an extent that the rest of us can't really get our heads around easily. They will keep checking that they can pull the string and make the person on the end of it respond in some way. They will tell themselves all kinds of stories, with as much fiction as required, to justify maintaining the string and the pull. And they get very, very agitated if one of their strings stops working. 

If it looks like the string might be loosening, they'll do whatever is necessary to get it tightened back up again. They will get friendly, affectionate, depressed, angry, self-pitying, apologetic, they'll neg, threaten suicide, manufacture an external crisis, exaggerate an external problem, develop a sudden illness, whatever. They may sort of believe what they are saying but really, they don't, not in the way we would understand things. Until we realise that it's all in service of the strings, we tend to interpret their behaviour in terms of our own kinds of motivations. So we figure that "I love you, I want to be with you" means the same from them as it would from us. From us, "I love you, I want to be with you" means that we love them and we want to be with them. It doesn't mean that from them. From them it means, "I sense my string on you is loosening, and I recognise a need to tighten it back up."

My experience is that until you have had a serious encounter with this kind of person, you just cannot understand how harmful they are. Once you have been through the full experience of dealing with this kind of person, you are never the same again and you will never again believe that deep down we are all wired emotionally roughly the same way. We are not all wired the same way. There's a significant cohort of people out there who might as well be alien simulations of human behaviour when compared with those of us who (including our terrible flaws, awful mistakes, misjudgments, and so on) function with normal empathy and a reasonably complete emotional template. We can't get a read on their behaviour until we recognise that they are using a different emotional operating system. 

FWIW I don't think this is the case for every WS or AP. I don't actually apply this to my WS, and I can't obviously be sure it's the case here. But the core lesson that some people are wired differently has been life-changing for me. I don't have the qualifications to say whether someone is BPD, NPD, or some other PD, or is a sociopath or psychopath, or doesn't have a personality disorder at all, so I just think of these guys as that other type of human. I just remind myself that for this minority of the population, my emotional mirror neurons misfire.  A book, "Stop Walking on Eggshells" about living with BPD types was a good read for me. I don't know whether the people I am thinking of are actually BPD, and I suspect it is a spectrum not simply one box or another. But leaving aside an actual diagnosis, the behaviours themselves are recognisable in many of the toxic people you encounter in your life.

It does feel mean to label someone as toxic. But it is what it is. If they cause harm and damage in every relationship they get into, they are toxic.

To be super clear, I don't know if any of this applies. It sure sounds like it does but how would I know, right? It's just something to think about. My wife's AP had been married 17 years before his wife learned he was this type of person. Once the sh!t hit the fan it was pretty apparent; the depths he sank to after it all came out, and he scrambled to keep all the strings tight, was absolutely incredible to behold. He harmed his kids, he harmed his wife, he harmed her family, he was in the end removed from their home by police and that was a last resort for his wife.

I have thought hard about it and I don't think I could sustain for even a day the kind of deception and using that cheaters sustain for weeks, months, or years. I would crack up trying to live that way. It would either have to drive you crazy or you'd have to be wired differently in the first place. How long KristenG could you keep up behaving like your wife is? A day? A week? Not long, anyway, I am certain. It's not normal and it can't be interpreted in terms of normal emotional wiring. 
Formerly known as Anthropoidape... male bs, long affair, d-day Feb 2017.
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ThrivenotSurvive
KristinG,

Please read Anthro and TripleHooks words above.  They make excellent, important points.  

Two other points I'd like to add.  Like Anthro, I can make no assertions about your WW's personality and potentially disordered thinking/feeling.  However, based on what you have shared here EXCLUSIVELY - it is very suspect.  Her actions, wording and timing combine to look (from the outside looking in) like someone who might very well be clinical.  Please note - I am not saying she is.  But I am saying that what you have shared makes me VERY worried for you - and skeptical of her ability to meaningfully change any time soon (if ever).  

I hope I am wrong.  But if you look through my posts you will find that I almost always err on the side of believing in change and redemption.  But there are a number of warning flags in her behavior that are making me far less positive in this case.  

Secondly, it is not just HER that is worrying me.  You do too.  You seem to lack a "normal" (for lack of a better word) amount of anger.  I spend the vast majority of my time asking people to let go of their anger when it is no longer serving them and beginning to impact their ability to enjoy life.  However, I find myself wishing you can generate a bit more anger.  Anger in the right circumstances can be very beneficial and give us the impetus to make necessary changes.

Her actions have been, frankly, outrageous.  Downright cruel.  Dishonest.  Manipulative.  Ongoing in the face of your pain.  And yet, you seem unable to muster much self-righteous anger on your own behalf.  I am not sure that is entirely healthy.  I have hesitated to say this because I think kindness and compassion are virtues that are beautiful and that we need more of it in this world - and you exemplify both.  You are obviously such a GOOD person.  But being good and kind do NOT exclude healthy boundaries.  Which you seem to really, really struggle with. 

Do you find yourself regularly in the caretaker and fixer role for other broken people?  Maybe in past relationships or even in childhood? If this was a role you developed early in life, you may not even realize how outrageous her behavior really is... that even among WSs she stands out as unusually manipulative. 

I say this because you remind me of several people I have known who had childhoods that caused them to take on caretaker roles early.  This resulted in them often not really realizing when unhealthy people were using them in ways that were REALLY harmful.  They internalized at a very young age that their needs were not as important as others.  And it makes them easy prey for broken/toxic people who have not learned healthy ways to love (the people Anthro was talking about)

I hope that you see the true concern behind my words.  I do NOT want to hurt your feelings and imply that this is your fault (it is NOT) or that you are not an amazing person - you clearly are.  But I want to see you protect yourself better.  To demand what you deserve and hold fast to it.   And I have been a bit shocked at the lack of anger in situations that CALL FOR IT AS A MEANS OF SELF-PRESERVATION.
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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KristinG
Very interesting ideas from all.  Triple, I looked into the narc guy's website and it didn't really resonate with her personality type.  I do agree, however, that an unhealthy attachment between us has occurred.  I'm still remaining strong and it has officially been over a week since we have spent any time together.  I have spent some time thinking about what Thrive said and I'm concerned as to why I haven't been angry.  Not to say I haven't felt and expressed anger at times, but, overall, I have not gotten angry.  Sad, depressed, etc - yes.  But anger, not as much.  When things first came to light on original DDay a year ago, I was a crazy woman with anger.  I acted in ways that were embarrassing quite frankly.  Now the anger just won't come and I should be angry.  Everyone tells me that I should be angry.  Throughout this entire journey my mom has tried to get me to find my anger.  Interesting things to think about.

One year ago today my wife told me she has feelings for someone else.  It's a weird feeling being one year out from the worst time of my entire life.  Trying to stay positive and enjoy my friends and myself today.  Happy Halloween everyone!
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