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I Came So Close: Confusion in the Aftermath [UPDATE]


Coping Learning to deal with one's emotions and loss.

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Old 12th June 2017, 1:43 AM   #1
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I Came So Close: Confusion in the Aftermath [UPDATE]

Long story short (as short as I am able to keep it)...

I started seeing an engaged woman one year ago who, at the time, was trying an open relationship arrangement with her fiancÚ. I was her only partner beside him during this experiment.

We really hit it off. Things got too intense though after a few months, and we decided neither of us could be non-monogamous. We ended things and she and her fiancÚ resumed a normal monogamous relationship with each other.

Several months later, we were back in contact and this time her fiancÚ didn't know. We got back together, so at this point it was an affair. Because he does so much traveling for work, she basically lived with me for 90% of the affair.

Things started getting intense again. She felt really guilty because of the affair. She says she loves him, but she's "in love" with me. They're more like roommates and friends than they are romantic partners, and she had been complaining to him that she wasn't happy. She often told me she was more in love with me than anyone she'd ever loved before, and that she could envision a future with me, complete with marriage and kids

She knew it was only a matter of time before she had to stop seeing me because the guilt was overwhelming her and she decided she needed to come clean to her fiancÚ and figure herself out properly - to "do things the right way." So we stopped seeing each other recently, she confessed everything to him (strangely, he wasn't angry), and she's going to try giving it a fair shot with him since they have a history together. But she's not certain what the outcome will be. She knows she wants to live a more honest life, be genuine, and figure herself out in therapy. She says at least if she and I do start a future together that she will feel much better about it having taken this path, and I agree. The idea of 'jumping ship' probably wouldn't bode well as a more sincere path such as this.

She says she would like to do things the right way and contact me in several months (we set a six month deadline) when she can speak more clearly to what she intends to do. She maintains her comment about a potential future with me, and she wants to have kids within the next couple of years, so it's pretty much make or break.

So, I'm basically waiting for the rest of 2017 and sorting my own stuff out until she contacts me with what's going on. It's really hard for me to be with other women right now, and I plan on waiting at least until I know what her deal is before I move on and think about other women.

What do you think our chances are? I know it's anybody's guess, and a lot depends on her and the fiancÚ's working things out, but she has been saying for a while she hasn't felt like it's the kind of relationship she wants with him and now that she's a little older she feels something really special with me.
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Old 12th June 2017, 2:24 AM   #2
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Long story short (as short as I am able to keep it)...

I started seeing an engaged woman one year ago who, at the time, was trying an open relationship arrangement with her fiancÚ. I was her only partner beside him during this experiment.

We really hit it off. Things got too intense though after a few months, and we decided neither of us could be non-monogamous. We ended things and she and her fiancÚ resumed a normal monogamous relationship with each other.

Several months later, we were back in contact and this time her fiancÚ didn't know. We got back together, so at this point it was an affair. Because he does so much traveling for work, she basically lived with me for 90% of the affair.

Things started getting intense again. She felt really guilty because of the affair. She says she loves him, but she's "in love" with me. They're more like roommates and friends than they are romantic partners, and she had been complaining to him that she wasn't happy. She often told me she was more in love with me than anyone she'd ever loved before, and that she could envision a future with me, complete with marriage and kids

She knew it was only a matter of time before she had to stop seeing me because the guilt was overwhelming her and she decided she needed to come clean to her fiancÚ and figure herself out properly - to "do things the right way." So we stopped seeing each other recently, she confessed everything to him (strangely, he wasn't angry), and she's going to try giving it a fair shot with him since they have a history together. But she's not certain what the outcome will be. She knows she wants to live a more honest life, be genuine, and figure herself out in therapy. She says at least if she and I do start a future together that she will feel much better about it having taken this path, and I agree. The idea of 'jumping ship' probably wouldn't bode well as a more sincere path such as this.

She says she would like to do things the right way and contact me in several months (we set a six month deadline) when she can speak more clearly to what she intends to do. She maintains her comment about a potential future with me, and she wants to have kids within the next couple of years, so it's pretty much make or break.

So, I'm basically waiting for the rest of 2017 and sorting my own stuff out until she contacts me with what's going on. It's really hard for me to be with other women right now, and I plan on waiting at least until I know what her deal is before I move on and think about other women.

What do you think our chances are? I know it's anybody's guess, and a lot depends on her and the fiancÚ's working things out, but she has been saying for a while she hasn't felt like it's the kind of relationship she wants with him and now that she's a little older she feels something really special with me.
Lol....they all say that. Focus on actions, not words. Is she taking concrete steps to end the relationship with her SO? Doesn't sound like it to me. Oh also, before you start buying in to her ego inflating comments about how great you are. I encourage you to go through threads in this category and just see how affairs hurt the OM/OW. BTW, will you ever be able to trust this woman? What makes you think she won't get bored with you and find another guy when the spark isn't there with you anymore
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Old 12th June 2017, 3:18 AM   #3
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Her reconciliation and honesty is bs. That's what I make it out to be.

How is she reconciling with this man, while also giving you a 6 month "I'll call you, don't call me," deadline?

My guess is you should block her number so when she calls, or messages, you have no idea about it and move on, like you should be

She is being selectively honest if you can call anything she has said "honest." Have you spoken to him? Do you actually know she told him at all? Or has she just said she told him the truth and that he didn't freak out? You trust this statement? If so, why? I don't believe anything she has said. Not a word of it. I am not in love with her though so I can see that clearly. I do not for one second believe for her husband knows anything about any of this. If anything he may have become suspicious which is why she has asked you to back off for six months while things calm down at home
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Old 12th June 2017, 4:21 AM   #4
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I'd step away TTB, difficult though I know that is.

At best she seems very immature and prone to change her mind about things. You may be flavour of the month one minute, but who's to say she won't change her mind about this a few months or years down the line. She comes across as a thrill seeker, excitement addict. You are the thrill at the moment, but will you still be in five years?

I feel very sorry for her fiancÚ. Not even married and already all this cheating and deception as she's already used the ILYBINILWY line, albeit behind his back in a second hand way to you.

Lots of risk, many red flags and potential heartbreak and devastation. I would proceed very cautiously. I would hey out as soon as you can.

But whatever you decide, best of luck.
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Old 12th June 2017, 7:54 AM   #5
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During their 'open' period, did you meet and get to know the other guy, at least a little? Being at least POLITE to each other is pretty standard in poly circles IMO. While there are couples that legitimately practice don't-ask-don't-tell, this is frowned on by most poly people because it has too many possibilities for trouble.

If you did not meet him and have only her word that they were open during that time, that's a big red flag.

Your chances are much better if you did meet him and everything was on the up-and-up, and if he was also experimenting during that time period. The reason I say this is that if he's pretty comfortable with you and with non-traditional relationships, he's probably not all that shocked by the idea of her still wanting to work things out with you, even if disappointed by her inability to be honest about it.

This woman likes you a lot. She also likes her other boyfriend. If you were all three willing to settle into some long-term poly arrangement, I'd say your chances were good. However, if you're pulling for "me, only me, marriage and kids and the whole nine yards" then your chances are... not good at all, really.

She already picked somebody she wants the stability of marriage and kids with. She's hesitating, because she likes you too, but there's a strong possibility that what she wants is the exciting part of the relationship with you, and not the other part.

And if she does drop him for you, because you're the new shiny thing and more exciting than the familiar thing, it's probably not that long before you get dropped for the next in turn.

Why did you decide you couldn't do non-monogamy? That reasoning may also affect what can happen here.
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Old 12th June 2017, 8:56 AM   #6
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She's playing you. Not maliciously but selfishly.

This woman is NOT married yet, she's engaged. If the guy she's with now isn't the love of her life nothing is stopping her from ending her engagement with him and being with you full time.

RUN. She is where she wants to be.
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Old 12th June 2017, 10:27 AM   #7
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During their 'open' period, did you meet and get to know the other guy, at least a little? Being at least POLITE to each other is pretty standard in poly circles IMO. While there are couples that legitimately practice don't-ask-don't-tell, this is frowned on by most poly people because it has too many possibilities for trouble.

If you did not meet him and have only her word that they were open during that time, that's a big red flag.

Your chances are much better if you did meet him and everything was on the up-and-up, and if he was also experimenting during that time period. The reason I say this is that if he's pretty comfortable with you and with non-traditional relationships, he's probably not all that shocked by the idea of her still wanting to work things out with you, even if disappointed by her inability to be honest about it.

This woman likes you a lot. She also likes her other boyfriend. If you were all three willing to settle into some long-term poly arrangement, I'd say your chances were good. However, if you're pulling for "me, only me, marriage and kids and the whole nine yards" then your chances are... not good at all, really.

She already picked somebody she wants the stability of marriage and kids with. She's hesitating, because she likes you too, but there's a strong possibility that what she wants is the exciting part of the relationship with you, and not the other part.

And if she does drop him for you, because you're the new shiny thing and more exciting than the familiar thing, it's probably not that long before you get dropped for the next in turn.

Why did you decide you couldn't do non-monogamy? That reasoning may also affect what can happen here.
I wanted to meet him but he didn't feel the same. I have confirmation though that he knew, and he was also meeting other women at the time.

She just wants what's best for her and wants to give things due process, so she's trying hard with him since they have a history together. Even if they work things outfit a bit she's not convinced yet on him. She can't be convinced on me either until she figures herself out, but she does love me a lot.
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Old 12th June 2017, 10:34 AM   #8
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I wanted to meet him but he didn't feel the same. I have confirmation though that he knew, and he was also meeting other women at the time.

She just wants what's best for her and wants to give things due process, so she's trying hard with him since they have a history together. Even if they work things outfit a bit she's not convinced yet on him. She can't be convinced on me either until she figures herself out, but she does love me a lot.
She loves herself. She has shown you who she is. Believe it. She isn't married, there is nothing stopping her from being with you. Live your life fully, not in a holding pattern, waiting for her.
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Old 12th June 2017, 11:24 AM   #9
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Why did you decide you couldn't do non-monogamy? That reasoning may also affect what can happen here.
For me, I have done my time casually dating and trying open relationships, and I've come to appreciate the role of sacrifice in monogamy. I saw non-monogamy as a way to meet more of my needs that one person couldn't possibly fulfill, but I feel it created more problems than it did benefit, and I'm okay with being with just one person...even if it means at times not feeling completely fulfilled.

Her reasons are similar. She has said that she gets too emotionally involved with a partner, does not want them seeing other people, that she finds monogamy simpler and easier, and that if she wants to be a mom than she doesn't want interference/threat to the family.

As a side note, this time around she initially planned to continue seeing me as long as she could, but she got too attached and found herself constantly thinking of me when she was with him. It made her feel incredibly guilty and she decided she couldn't keep up the secrets anymore. She wanted to come clean and get into therapy to sort herself out before she can really be with anybody.
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Old 12th June 2017, 11:42 AM   #10
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Good grief, what is attractive about a woman who would cheat on a guy she isn't even married to? Most cheaters have the built in excuses of not being able to leave because of children, finances, etc. Your taken woman has none of that, she's just selfish and wants both of you.

Also amazing how people who get involved with people who are already in a relationship twist up their thinking to believe whatever the cheater tells them. She says she feels something special with you? How special can you feel when she has also decided to put you on hold while she tries to save her relationship with her first choice, her fiancÚ. Do you really feel special being relegated to wait in the wings as her fall back guy in case her relationship with her fiancÚ can't be saved?

I think both you and her fiancÚ are being made into fools. She says she wants to give things a fair shot with her fiancÚ but since she told you to wait six months she is already not giving her relationship a fair shot. And she has you agreeing to just patiently wait to see if she will pick you after 6 months. Ridiculous.

If she does want to be with you after 6 months then she will use this time to properly and fully break up with her fiancÚ right now and then spend the next six months healing from that breakup and getting her act together. It would be pretty slimy of her to string her fiancÚ along for the next 6 months only to suddenly ditch him for you.
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Old 12th June 2017, 2:04 PM   #11
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I'm an ex-OW and I never really allowed myself to love the MM.

I've had a couple, well, several abusive relationships (MM wasn't one of them).

The thing is, after multiple breakups and makeups with the last abuser, I realized it just wasn't possible for him to treat me right. Narcissist is thrown around freely on this board, but he really was one. Everyone else in his life would tell you how kind, generous, smart, loyal and funny that last abuser was/is. Who knows? You may even work or know this guy.

Yet, only his ex-wife (happened years before I met him) and I really know what a bastard he is.

He just had me slotted into a position of girlfriend he wasn't willing to make an effort for and who would accept the very least he had to offer. It is really tough to break that pattern, that mindset.

And this (in my opinion only) is why a lot of affairs don't work when they get a chance.

When a man or woman only offers you the very least and you accept that, they have a tough time bringing you fully into their lives.

One night, I had a very vivid dream long after we were finished. MM is somehow free, wife has left him for another man, he's fine with it, she hasn't bankrupted him, his kids are accepting that and everyone is happy and healthy. He wants to be with me, he wants me in his life. Only he wants to wait one year, just to keep things "respectable".

We have a fantastic year together. Lots of sex and overnight stays, a few weekend trips away from everyone. We are still a secret. One year comes and goes. 13 months, 14 months. We are talking of marriage, but still not open. I haven't met his kids yet. I'm not included in family things - but exw and new husband are.

It finally dawns on me, that he is never going to look at me truly as wife material. I'm always going to be that woman who was willing to bang him while he was married to someone else, I'm always going to be flawed.

It was an intense dream full of a lot of varying emotions.

Even if you want it, even if it is perfect for your lifestyle (right now), being in a secret relationship, is a way of shortchanging yourself. It is a way of never having to commit, to never be truly close to someone, to never have to deal with day to day drudgery.

What this woman has done is to keep you on the hook, keep you in orbit, keep you as a backup plan for the next six months. You're a failsafe for her.

You're not really making any decisions about your future. She is. You don't get to start healing and moving on from the relationship for...six months. Your life is in limbo until she makes her decision. Meanwhile, she is living her life.
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Old 12th June 2017, 3:26 PM   #12
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What this woman has done is to keep you on the hook, keep you in orbit, keep you as a backup plan for the next six months. You're a failsafe for her.

You're not really making any decisions about your future. She is. You don't get to start healing and moving on from the relationship for...six months. Your life is in limbo until she makes her decision. Meanwhile, she is living her life.
Thanks for sharing your perspective. I'm sorry to hear about your past experience as an OW. I do understand narcissism quite well and believe what you are telling me.

To give some clarity, my engaged woman never suggested to me that I put my dating life on hold for six months, but she did say that was the amount of time she wanted to give her relationship before pulling the plug on it. In fact, she did say that she would be okay with me dating other women during this six month period (although she doesn't like the idea). She feels that she has to risk knowing she may not get me back, because she doesn't want the knowledge of me as backup to be a deciding factor for her to exit. If she exits, she wants it to be completely at her own will because it's what she wants to do. She plans to do both individual and couples therapy as part of the six month process.

The decision to not see anyone for the next six months is my own. For one, I have had a really crazy year between seeing her and various other women during the same period. Even if I didn't wait the six month period, it would probably take me at least a few months (maybe more) to heal from what I just ended with her. I figure why not wait it out the full ride at that point. I mean, if someone unexpectedly shows up in my life and seems way too good to pass up, I'm not going to hold out. But the odds of that happening are probably low. So in the meantime, I'm sorting myself out to try and understand why I got involved in this mess to begin with. She will be in touch with me again at some point, and if when she is she tells me she is single, I will absolutely pursue her again.
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Old 12th June 2017, 3:30 PM   #13
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Her reasons are similar. She has said that she gets too emotionally involved with a partner, does not want them seeing other people, that she finds monogamy simpler and easier, and that if she wants to be a mom than she doesn't want interference/threat to the family.
And yet, she decided to cheat with you, because it was easy and convenient for her. It seems like she wants to be jealous and possessive, but she doesn't want to inconvenience herself by sticking to one relationship. Maybe she's aware that this is unfair of her, or maybe she's just saying that.

If she really wants to sort herself out the best thing IMO would be for her to break up with both of you before she does her soul-searching. But she won't, because she doesn't want to give up her comforts...

I'm reminded of a thread we had on here several months back, I can't remember who the poster was, but he was the OM to a girl who I think was originally his coworker, and she KEPT bouncing back and forth between him and her fiance, and both guys were aware of the problem and exasperated by it and even talked to each other to commiserate sometimes, but neither was willing to actually give the girl up, and she kept this mess going for years...

edit: aha, it was this thread I was thinking of: Trying to understand what happened and the mayhem I just went thru

Last edited by somanymistakes; 12th June 2017 at 3:34 PM.. Reason: adding link
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Old 12th June 2017, 3:52 PM   #14
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And yet, she decided to cheat with you, because it was easy and convenient for her. It seems like she wants to be jealous and possessive, but she doesn't want to inconvenience herself by sticking to one relationship. Maybe she's aware that this is unfair of her, or maybe she's just saying that.

If she really wants to sort herself out the best thing IMO would be for her to break up with both of you before she does her soul-searching. But she won't, because she doesn't want to give up her comforts...
Yeah, I'll agree with you on the not wanting to give up her comforts thing.

I don't believe the relationship between the two of them is going to work out, and if it does survive, it will be dead while they remain 'together' (this is how it's been with them for several years now). They make good friends, but I don't think they're compatible as romantic partners long-term.

I'm not convinced that she and I will be together though. It's a very different relationship with me. She often says that being with me is much more risky than being with him "because there is more to gain with you [love, fulfillment, connection] and so therefore more to lose with you." At least with him, it's safe, albeit unfulfilling. If she is going to choose to be with me, she's going to sign up for another relationship that has pros and cons. I've told her before that she'll be trading the kind of problems she has in her current relationship for the kind of problems we'll have in our relationship (including our own likelihood of needing couples therapy to come to terms with how we formed a relationship). I guess it's matter of not only love, but what kind of problems she's willing to have to fulfill her goals and values in love and life.

She claims she has never cheated before and that this is all very distressing for her, but that it has been the breaking point that she's needed for a while to go to therapy and work on herself. I do believe she will be okay in the long run, whether she's with me or not. Of course, I would love to be with her more than anything, but I'm not betting on it in the meantime.
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Old 16th June 2017, 4:48 PM   #15
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I'm reminded of a thread we had on here several months back, I can't remember who the poster was, but he was the OM to a girl who I think was originally his coworker, and she KEPT bouncing back and forth between him and her fiance, and both guys were aware of the problem and exasperated by it and even talked to each other to commiserate sometimes, but neither was willing to actually give the girl up, and she kept this mess going for years...

edit: aha, it was this thread I was thinking of: Trying to understand what happened and the mayhem I just went thru
Lol dude. Just as I was reading your story and thinking how incredibly similar it is to mine, and was getting ready to comment somebody post this and I'm like "hey that's my story!!!" Haha talk about tripping out.

Listen man, best thing to do will be to run and never look back. Now I know you won't do that because I was you, not that long ago and I kept buying her story and excuses for 2 years. The beginning, while she was still engaged sounds so similar to what you wrote. She even also told me one time she wants to give her relationship a chance for 90 days and then she will leave him....listen man....it's all fake and it won't ever happen.

You put your life on hold for next 6 months but unless you truly let go of her any girl you meet will always feel like a "temporary thing" until she calls you. You'll be waiting on that call until it comes and then drop everybody for her, I know, I did. The problem is she will never leave her fiancÚ and even if she gets caught she will try and repair it. She's just selfish, not on purpose, but selfish nonetheless. It's all about her feelings regardless who's feelings she destroys while they in her tornado.

I know it's an extremely difficult situation, decisions, wanting for her to finally "see the truth" and be with you but brother....it will never happen in the capacity you want and you will get hurt if your guard is not up.

I know my story is long as hell, read it, I guarantee you'll experience similar things on the road that's waiting for you if you stay in connection with this girl.

Good luck.
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