As I stated in my last post, I'm here, I'm working on me. I've tried to just focus on me and not put any emotional expectations on him. But it does still hurt, not even gonna try to lie about that. He has been doing a lot to try and make me feel safe, doesn't go out, tells me everywhere he's going and how long he's going to be gone, the only thing that bothers me is his phone is still locked, though it stays in the bedroom. It's not a huge deal breaker, the phone, just one of those things that triggers me because it still feels like hiding, even though I really don't think that's his intention. 

He takes care of us, he's working on the house (still remodeling), he's even done a few really sweet things for me, he's interacting with the kids more, slightly more affectionate to me, even told me on Mother's day that I looked nice and out of the blue he told me he loved me.

Due to restrictions in my pregnancy we hadn't been intimate in two months, but that was lifted on Monday, and we were intimate this morning. I started crying after and finally spoke up that I feel like when he told me 12 years ago he didn't love me, that was the most honest thing he's said to me. I truly think he cares, I think he wants to see us happy, I think he wants the kids and I cared for, but I feel like all of that is obligation. 

We don't talk about anything.  The affair is never brought up. We don't do anything to heal our marriage from all of the damage that has been done. He's done no work to figure out why he repeatedly does these things, but he swears it won't happen again because he "just won't let it".  And then if I ever do bring it up and tell him how I feel, I feel guilty.

Why do I feel guilty?  Why do I feel like I'm expecting too much? Is it because I've buried my feelings for so long that I feel guilty for making someone else feel bad for my hurt feelings? 

Am I expecting too much?  Tell me honestly.  Is it wrong to think that if he really does love me, he'd want to work on issues?  Get help? Tell me he loves me? Tell me how much I mean to him, and that he's sorry he hurt me? Of course I understand he doesn't want to be reminded all the time, I get that, but dang it, *i* am reminded all the time.

Am I expecting too much, and if he really does care, will the rest just come with time, and I just keep my mouth shut and work on myself?  Be honest.
Female BS
Dday 10/12/2018

Renewing myself one day at a time. 
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The short answer is NO.  You are not expecting too much.  The vast majority of what you are asking for is a normal part of a healthy relationship.  The others are completely normal and almost requirements after infidelity.

There is a much longer, more detailed answer (from my perspective) that I will share later as I am not in a location to use my computer right now.  

But for now I want to reassure you - no you do not have unreasonable expectations. 
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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Blessed. I get you well. I don't know how often I heard the too high expectation thing. What about their expectations os us, our feelings, emotions, our timeframe.....? I know the guilt too well as well. One of my husband's most favorite thing to say."Nothing will ever be good enough for you..." cuts to the core as he used the exact line to complain about me to the ow. His expectations back then were that I should be happy despite being depressed. That I should welcome him home with a kiss and a hug, when I felt so left alone, misunderstood and unloved. His expectation was that I was grateful for everything he did to show me that he loved me although being HIS way not what I NEEDED. His expectation was that I had to know he screwed up, when he came home from his business trip, where he had betrayed me and as I didn't that must mean I don't care so he can just continue to betray me. His expectation was for me to pursue him, connect to him, when he distanced himself and pushed me away.

So expectations are present on both sides and so easily misunderstood because its a feeling we have but might not actually have anything to do with the truth or how the other person really feels. My point is that we all have a certain way, how we feel loved but it might be complety different from our partner's. (Love languages and Love and respect are two books, that I found very helpful). This is when communication is key. You say your husband is trying but is trying wrong 😉. My husband and I are struggling with that too, although we are slowely getting better.

I agree that therapy would be helpful but can understand why someone would be scared of it. It may well tap into old wounds from childhood, that are too painful to face. You may be seen as crazy or weak.... You can't force him. As my therapist always says, you can lead a horse to water but you won't be able to make it drink. It won't do you any good, if you drag him there and he shuts down and resents you for it. this has to come from him. 

I know it really sucks and is hugely unfair that the ball is back in your corner, but I can see hope for you and your husband. Maybe you can pick a time, when you have some time to yourself and ask him, what it means for him to feel loved. What does it take from you, to make him feel special? And then asked him how he thinks he is showing love to you? How he feels you want to be loved. What he thinks you need to feel loved.... I bet you it is completly different from what you want and need. So maybe he is trying wrong because he goes by how he would feel loved instead. I think its still important to recognize his attempts and not discourage him but let him know exactly what you need. I found my husband was willing, just didn't know how. 

I hope this helps a bit. Please don't read it as you are overreacting or have too high expectations. I don't thing you are or they are too high. I just feel you are on two different tracks. Hugs and best of luck
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I got a lot of great tips from watching Tony Robbins on YouTube.   It really helped me to know how to ask and what questions to ask my husband.   It really opened up the lines of communication.     
  Mine too, never wanted to talk.   His reasons were, that he couldn’t put it behind him if I kept brining it up.  Also, he said it about killed him every time, seeing me so hurt.  Still, I knew what I needed, so I kept plugging away.   My reasoning was, he had his selfish time, now it’s my turn to be selfish-and heal.   
    Another thing that helped is emailing him videos and articles about why we needed to have many, many conversations.    It was worth the effort for me to send him that information, since it was also helping me to heal.    
     Yes, I would have preferred that he would have taken the initiative.   I wasn’t willing to wait for him to figure it out.  I move faster than him, especially when it comes to self help.   I’m glad I did.  I did it all for me.  The bonus was, it helped him and us as well. 
      You are not wrong in your needs.   This is your time.   He had his.    Then, hopefully, it can be “our” time.
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Absolutely not!!! Your expectations are crazy LOW as far as I’m concerned. Sadie is right- he has spent years being selfish. He is the one who has hurt you. You get to tell him exactly how you feel and what you need from him if you so wish, and you absolutely shouldn’t feel bad about it. He SHOULD feel guilty! You shouldn’t be trying to spare his feelings. What about your feelings?! He certainly didn’t try to spare them! 

Though it may be that he’s ‘trying’, it’s obviously not good enough if YOU are left feeling this way. He’s not doing the right things, and he isn’t doing what you need. I would not be shy about bringing up the phone issue. Triggers like that will eat away at you. He needs to have that phone unlocked or for you to know the pin, so that you can wander in at ANY time and pick it up to go through whenever the urge strikes your fancy. You should not need to ask his permission to do this. 

Tbh reading what you’ve written? I would say his ‘trying’ is sorely lacking. Does he talk about it if you bring it up, or at least answer your questions? My WS would rarely (never) bring it up though in the later months he does in order to tell me how sorry he is and that he realises what he did was terrible and selfish and is working hard on himself to change. If he didn’t bring it up like this, I’m sure I would be talking about it a whole lot more, as I did at the start. If he doesn’t want to talk about it because he wants to ‘put it behind him’, that would be a MASSIVE red flag for me. Why? That’s pure rug sweeping! 

Yes you should work on yourself, but HE needs to work harder to show you, in the way you need, that he’s taking this chance that he doesn’t deserve seriously and is looking to change himself. Change is necessary and absolutely required in any attempts in reconciliation... or we are set up to have the same thing recur.

My WS too, gave me answers like ‘it won’t happen again because I won’t let it’. Absolute garbage. You already DID! I may even have laughed in his face the first few times he said that. I’ve told him that clearly, his boundaries, resolve, integrity and honour are non existent. He had no concept of self control. He has already proven he will make such a choice. So any claims about ‘stopping himself’ in the future are laughable. It took a LONG time before I didn’t respond with bitter sarcasm and laughter to hear such an answer. The only thing that now makes such an answer more reasonable, is that he now says it as ‘I am the only one who can change myself and I am changing to become a better person. I am the only one who can control myself and I will not choose to make those choices again because I’m no longer blind and I can see where they lead’. That was still met with a healthy dose of scepticism at first, but being further along in this awful process, my best answer is now ‘ok. Thank you for telling me’.

You asked if ‘he really loves you/cares, would he try harder?’ 

I think this is a difficult one. 

The biggest thing here, is insight. I believe WS generally lack insight into their own issues... which is often how they end up cheating. There are certain predisposing factors in them that THEY themselves have failed to identify as issues. They believe that the way the think, feel and behave is ‘normal’ (obviously it’s NOT). 

While the WS may claim that they ‘love’ their BS, I would argue that the WS’s definition of love is at best, a poor imitation of what the BS might define love to be. I know in my case, my WS thought he ‘loved’ me. In some kind of superficial thoughtless way, where ‘love’ equated to sleeping around being ok, disrespecting me, putting his own needs and wants first, as well as his desire to feel ‘popular’ and ‘cool’ and ‘manly’. I can’t help but scoff at his pathetic definition of ‘love’ as I write this. He never once challenged his own thinking before this mess. He thought it was all ‘normal’. He would say so when I voiced any objections in the past. 

He was so BLIND. And delusional.

My WS now (hopefully) sees the crap that he did for what it is now. In our case, it wasn’t because he developed amazing insight all on his own. It was because I VERY bluntly told him what I outlined above, and questioned him to his face when he told me he ‘loved’ me. In fact, I would say my WS is generally pretty sh!t at developing personal insight. Luckily for him, I’m not holding back for fear of hurting his feelings. I will tell him EXACTLY what he is, very clearly, with no sugar coating or guilt. 

Some WS may be able to develop insight all by themselves. I’m inclined to think that being able to do so is rather exceptional. Far more commonly, these are the type of people who would rather not think too hard about their flaws, and will try to push through it with ‘I just won’t do that again’. I don’t believe that will work though, if the underlying issues aren’t addressed.

Tbh I don’t think my WS would’ve identified 10% of the issues he identifies NOW, if I hadn’t figuratively shoved his face in them. It isn’t ‘nice’ for them, sure. But neither is having your life torn apart by someone thoughtless enough to treat us so badly. Identifying issues was a PREREQUISITE for me to stay and give things a chance. 
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We are at the point where I am pointing out how he has treated me all these years and how it has made me feel.  He doesn't get it yet he is big rug sweeper   He says he is not that person anymore he has changed.  In just a few weeks time Amazing. ha
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Crushed wrote:
We are at the point where I am pointing out how he has treated me all these years and how it has made me feel.  He doesn't get it yet he is big rug sweeper   He says he is not that person anymore he has changed.  In just a few weeks time Amazing. ha

Yeah, classic response. That would a big fat “no you haven’t”. A couple of weeks don’t mean anything. He needs to prove it over YEARS.  My wife has been proving it for over 4 years, and she will have to continue to prove it until we separate, or one us dies. There is no finish line after this type of wound.
Male BS, D-day July 2015, trying to stay out of the dark.....
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