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Affair recovery. Sabotaging happiness.

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  • #413496
    Ashley
    Participant

    Hi everyone,

    I’m sorry for the novel. June 2021, I found out that my husband was having an affair with his co-worker. I can’t say it came as a shock because things were terrible, but it still hurt me. We attempted to fix things, but ultimately ended up officially separating in September. While we were separated, they ended up having a child together. Fast forward to Nov 2022, he confesses that he still loves me. I still love him. (Neither of us ever filed the papers to divorce)

    I love him dearly and I’d love to work everything out and move on. We don’t live together at the moment, so I’m worried about what he’s doing when I’m not around. He’s apologized profusely about the affair, admitted that it shouldn’t have happened, how he wishes it never happened, aside from his son. I’ve always had trust issues with people. He knew that, that’s why it hurt so much. I’m trying to move on from the past and get on with my life but the little voice in the back of my head likes to be negative. I always assume the worst now. I would like any tips to help restore my trust in him and stop myself from thinking so negatively about everything. Thanks in advance!

    #413499
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ashley:

    You shared that your husband (let’s refer to him as H) had an affair with his co-worker (let’s refer to her as W). You found out about it in June 2021, separated (but not divorced) in Sept 2021. W gave birth to H’s son sometime later on, and in Nov 2022, the two of you confessed your love for each other, H apologized for the affair profusely and expressed regret that it ever happened (except that he does not regret having his son)

    I’ve always had trust issues with people..  I’m trying to move on from the past and get on with my life but… I always assume the worst now. I would like any tips to help restore my trust in him and stop myself from thinking so negatively about everything. Thanks in advance!“-

    – You are welcome. You had trust issues and expected the worst before you met him, but it doesn’t mean that H is worthy of your trust, and that things are likely to turn out well once you live together again. You wrote that “things were terrible” between the two of you around the time he had the affair, can you share more about it (I am asking because I want to learn about his trustworthiness or lack of)?

    anita

    #413502
    Ashley
    Participant

    I was diagnosed with anxiety and depression major many years ago, but I never received care for it. At the time, I was one of the foolish people who think they can do it alone. After the birth of our daughter, May 2020, things got worse. Between my usual issues and ppd, I became very aggressive, mainly vocally….and much to my regret, I did hit my husband a few times. Not too long after that is when he cheated.

     

    I wish it wouldn’t have came to losing my family, but I did start therapy and started seeing a psychiatrist.

    #413504
    Helcat
    Participant

    Hi Ashley

    I’m sorry to hear that he cheated on you. It’s horrible that he betrayed you like that.

    I’m curious, why do you still love someone who treat you so terribly? What about him do you love?

    Would you mind providing a little more context? How long were you both together for? Do you have any children together?

    It’s difficult because as you are probably aware he’s quite likely to do the same thing again if you got back together. Is he still with his most recent partner whilst he has been saying all of these things to you?

    A relationship therapist might be a good idea for both of you if he is actually serious about getting back together.

    #413505
    Helcat
    Participant

    After reading your most recent reply:

    It sounds like there are a lot of issues on both sides. Therapy all around is a must!

    Do you forgive yourself for your part in it? Do you forgive him for his part in it? And vice versa?

    #413506
    Ashley
    Participant

    I’ve known him since middle school, had crushes on each other in high school and we lost contact for a while. Back in 2016, we started talking again and took things slow. We made it an “official” relationship in July 2017. We married April 2018. We had our daughter in May 2020. I miss the days where we could just sit and not do anything and be content. Or when we could cuddle up and watch movies. He wasn’t always like this. After his dad died, September 2021, things went downhill with him.

    No, he’s not with the AP (affair partner) anymore.

    #413507
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ashley:

    I suppose that he will need to trust you to not become aggressive with him again, and you will need to trust him to not cheat on you again. This can be a deal between the two of you: you earn his trust (no aggression), and he earns your trust (no cheating).

    Problem is that you are already anxious when you don’t know where he is (“We don’t live together at the moment, so I’m worried about what he’s doing when I’m not around”), and if you live together and he is late, or he is at work.. or meeting his ex because of the son they share, you’ll probably be anxious, wondering what’s happening. So, getting back together with him in itself is a cause for anxiety.

    It is a good thing that you started therapy: did you talk with your therapist and psychiatrist about the likelihood that getting back together with your husband will increase your  increase your anxiety, at least for some time?

    anita

     

    #413508
    Ashley
    Participant

    We’ve both agreed on therapy. We’re currently trying to arrange schedules so we can attend appointments. It was extremely hard to recognize that I was a toxic person but after a while, I did forgive myself. I forgive him too, but it’s more of a matter of not being able to move on. I keep wondering what I could’ve done differently.  Also, I can’t seem to get the image out of my head. Those are my main problems.

    #413509
    Ashley
    Participant

    I actually haven’t been able to see my therapist because of an insurance issue. But that will be resolved this Friday and I can continue my sessions. My psychiatrist knows the whole story and he’s increased my medicine for a little while. He said when I’m ready, he’ll help me to get back at my normal dose.

    #413510
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ashley:

    “It’s more of a matter of not being able to move on. I keep wondering what I could’ve done differently. Also, I can’t seem to get the image out of my head. Those are my main problems”-

    -to stop regretting the past and wishing to undo it, or change it (an impossibility, as you  know), and to stop being troubled by the image or images of him cheating, practice Radical Acceptance.

    From psychology today. com/ radical acceptance: “Key Points: * Radical acceptance is about accepting life on life’s terms and not resisting what one cannot or chooses not to change. *Accepting doesn’t mean agreeing. It’s simply exhausting to fight reality, and it doesn’t work. * Resisting reality delays healing and adds suffering to one’s pain.”

    You can read more about the topic there and elsewhere. You can read about Acceptance (not necessarily with the prefix radical) if you go to the top of the tiny buddha main page, click on BLOG, scroll down to Mindfulness & Peace, and go to ACCEPTANCE. There are articles there on the topic. Also, if you wish, you are welcome to post again on your thread, and I will gladly communicate with you further.

    anita

    #413515
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ashley: one  more thing, it just so happens that another member submitted a post 14 minutes ago that perfectly fits what you need today and every day. Please go to the thread titled  “Inspirational Quotes By Amy Temple“, Quote: “Focus On Today“.

    anita

    #413519
    Helcat
    Participant

    Hi Ashley

    It sounds like you’re doing all of the right things! Well done on taking care of yourself and your family.

    How have you both been managing the parenting relationship between you? Are things going well?

    It sounds like you’re on the way to moving on. Like anita said, it will take some time to build that trust.

    Do you have any activities that reduce anxiety? When you notice yourself getting anxious. Self-soothing and bringing down your overall anxiety level will help your emotions and thoughts stabilise.

    #413520
    Ashley
    Participant

    We’ve never really had any issues parenting, thankfully. None that I can think of. Even when we were split up, we agreed and co-parented pretty well. He sees her pretty regularly, almost daily.

    As far as stress relief, I like to play Happy Color or color in books

     

    #413590
    Helcat
    Participant

    Hi Ashley

    That’s a great sign that you have been co-parenting well together! I wish you both all of the best 🙏

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