After the affair and all the work and surviving-what does your marriage look like now? Does the pain/doubt ever go away? Is the trust every fully rebuilt? Is it really worth all the work?
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I'm only 8 weeks into this Brandi, so I don't have many answers based in my own personal experience. In fact, some days it all seems impossible to me. Some days I'm still a complete mess hanging out in the hallway between two possible doors leading to opposing options, stay and rebuild or divorce and rebuild. To stay I have to drop my pride, let go of the meaning in the details and the idea that I'll ever have a satisfying answer to why this occurred. I have to be able to live with the knowledge that I'm never again going to be the only woman that my husband has slept with or made to feel special (the way he initially made me feel and does some now) during the course of our marriage. I have to become better acquainted with the concept that his affair was not because I wasn't enough, or because she was something special but because of a perfect storm of circumstances involving my husband who was broken (loss of 15 year career), insecure and looking for a "quick fix" in validation from another woman. She was available and pathetic enough to open herself to a relationship with a married man, then seem surprised that he never left.
I know that post affair, when my husband and I are together, we are more attentive to one another and communicate (actually listen) to one another better then we ever have. I know there were things that I could have done better in our marriage from the beginning such as placing more value on our marital relationship. I wasn't a terrible wife, but I desired a family more than I desired to be a wife. So I took great care with the children and family activities taking the relationship with the my husband for granted. I put both of our needs behind that of the children (collectively, we have 4 so it's a big job) and thought that was what I was supposed to do. Looking back, I never saw a valued spouses relationship. My parents came together as a family for events, but disliked and resented one another openly most of the time. I think that's why it didn't seem strange to me to prioritize with our needs last. Now, he could have stepped up and made some effort to plan time together, schedule sitters, help with chores, etc which would have helped tremendously in giving us time together and decreasing the likelihood that I would be too tired when we did get a rare hour or two together. We took one another for granted and now we can see that. We were both very stubborn and prideful, we both talked but I'm not sure that either of us really listened. He had unaddressed and untreated PTSD and the capability of living a double life from 15 years as a law enforcement officer (many thing he was required to do there didn't match his core self but were needed for survival purposes) which he's now addressing.

Things are pretty good between us when I'm not angry, bitter, resentful or stuck in the pain of the infidelity (which has rarely been for an entire day without antidepressants and extreme effort on my part to avoid the conversation). When I'm with him, I'm reminded of how much I love him and want to be with him but when when have to be apart, like working class citizens do, I fall to peices with all the thoughts in my mind about the affair, fear of ulterior motives, anger that he had an affair, anger for the amount of time the affair lasted, etc. Some days he is very understanding of my grief and utter craziness and others his response to my crazy makes me feel worse and the arguments escalate to the point that we're both exhausted
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