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Clarity is so hard to find...


The Other Man / Woman The other side of the story: Support and discussion for those who find themselves involved with a committed partner.

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Old 13th May 2017, 9:12 PM   #1
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Clarity is so hard to find...

I'm the other woman. I'm having an affair with someone who wears a wedding ring and goes home to live a life that I don't get to share. They're words I never thought I would say - something I know I have in common with the vast majority of women (and men) who post here. However, my story has a slight twist: I'm in love with a married woman, not a man.

And tonight I'm at home feeling lonely (we've all been there) and reaching out to a community of people who might be the only ones who truly know what this particular kind of loneliness feels like. This is a long post, but I know I have taken comfort reading some of your stories and hopefully someone will benefit from or have some valuable insight after taking the time to read mine.

I'm a lesbian - something I figured out many years ago, during high school and college. I've had a lot of time to become comfortable with who and what I am, and I am out to all of my close friends and family. I hate to fall back on stereotypes, but I'm more feminine than not and don't have any "dead giveaway" characteristics, but my sexuality isn't something I've ever kept intentionally hidden. I mention this to point out that there's no internalized homophobia or self-hate going on. I've also been single for many years for a variety of reasons - I've had relationships, none of them particularly great, and often have a difficult time meeting women to whom I'm attracted enough to see more than a few times. While I've loved some of the women I have dated, I have never before experienced the kind of love that made me feel certain I'd found the person I might be able to spend a lifetime with.

I met this MW a few years ago at work. We immediately hit it off and became friends. For the first couple of years, we were simply work friends - we'd stop and chat and share a laugh, but we were both busy and that was all there was to it. I appreciated immediately that she was gorgeous and smart as well as very funny, and I had a little crush on her. But I'm also a realistic person (at least I've always considered myself to be, until lately!) so I really don't allow myself to get seriously interested in straight women, much less married straight women. There's just no point in that, right? Setting myself up for disappointment and likely an awkward relationship where the friendship used to be. So I enjoyed my innocent little crush on her, and never thought deeply about it. I continued to date actual lesbians, but never found anyone who held my interest.

About a year ago, she and I started spending more time together. Toward the late spring/early summer, we began socializing alone and not just in the regular work crowd. We would meet for brunch or dinner and end up having conversations that went on and on for hours. I was stunned when, one day, she confessed to me that she was having "confusing feelings" about me. By that time, she had moved on and we were no longer working together.

A little background. She's been married nearly two decades, and has several kids and stepkids, all of whom are now adults. She swears (and I believe her) that she had never so much as wanted to kiss a woman before me. But one day last fall, flattered that such a beautiful, interesting woman was curious about me, I kissed her. And that kiss was like so many of your first kisses with your MM and MW - it quickly escalated into a full-blown love affair. We were soon texting and calling whenever we could, and sneaking time together was easy. She's straight, after all, and no one questions her spending time with another woman. Her friends and mine are essentially the same group other than those she knows through her husband. They all know I'm gay, but they'd never question her sexuality and I seriously doubt it's occurred to any of them that there's anything going on with us.

Throughout this all, what I've always told myself makes our affair different is that we were best friends, close for years before we even began flirting. We have a bond that is truly built on love and best will for the other person. Before we shared our first kiss, I already knew most of her family and friends, had spent hours in her home and out with her socially, etc. It isn't like I started the affair and then wormed my way into her home life. I was already there. Her kids adore me. I've been on trips with her and them before. So... I guess that's also a twist - our friendship predates the affair by years.

A few months after our affair began, she really dialed back the communication. She wasn't nearly as flirty, she didn't make as much time for me. She told me her life had gotten busy, her husband was working less and she was dealing with holiday family obligations as well as a vacation they'd had planned for months that took her away for a week. I accepted that and though it felt strange to have her suddenly go from always being able to find time to Snapchat or sneak in a five-minute phone call to having essentially zero time for me.

In March, almost 6 months after our affair began, and after two months of up-and-down contact, she told me she was "not in the same place" and had been praying and reflecting, and had concluded that the best thing for everyone was for us to go back to being just friends. It broke my heart in the worst way. I held it together and was mature when talking to her - told her I understood (and the truth is, I did) and assured her I didn't hate her or blame her for anything. We did hang out a few times, nothing romantic happened. This was exceptionally difficult and though I sensed it might be better to go no contact, the truth is I love her very much and I did want to preserve our friendship if possible. Even if I often found myself crying for hours about the changed status of our relationship.

I even tried dating someone else. This new woman was an *actual* lesbian. An actual *single* lesbian who has so much going for her - she's pretty, she's smart, she has her life together. We share many of the same interests, and she's thoughtful and considerate. Wants to hear from me all the time, happy to drop most things she's doing and come spend time. Of course, I couldn't give her a fair chance because I'm so in love with MW.

The "breakup" lasted about a month. My MW finally started texting me one night, and in a conversation that lasted 5 hours, told me she had tried to convince herself that she could move on, that she could do the right thing by everyone. She iterated that she STILL thinks breaking off the affair is the right thing to do. But she told me she felt the same way, wanted to see me, wanted to kiss me again. But she said she felt tremendous guilt - not just about her BS, but also toward me. She knows that as long as she's in the picture, I'm closing my heart to meeting other people, I'm letting people who could put me first slip by.

So things started up again about a month ago and they've just progressed quickly. We spent the entire day together, and it was fantastic. We made love, laughed, had incredibly sweet moments together... and then I had to watch her get into her car and go home. I sent her a text about two hours ago telling her how happy I was to have had such a great day with her. I haven't gotten a response (she's opened the snap and I know she carries her phone with her CONSTANTLY.)

I am worried that while the day was perfect for me, having such an intense day of intimacy with me after trying to end the affair might be giving her a hard time. I want to reach out and talk to her about it, but I also want to respect that maybe she needs to process it on her own. I have no idea. And isn't that one of the struggles we all share? Knowing our MW or MM is home with the family while we sit alone missing them, knowing the hours that drag on for us often fly by for them.

I'll be out of town from Monday through Wednesday, so chances are we won't see each other for almost a week. Today was a great way to say goodbye; I'm just missing her already.

I know the odds of her leaving him are slim to none. She's never mislead me about that. She loves her husband, though they're growing more and more apart in recent years. They have a shared history, shared children, shared financial and familial entanglements. They have societal acceptance (she has expressed concern to me, many times, about whether she'd ever be comfortable holding my hand in public or being part of a known same-sex couple.) At the same time, she's been the one bringing up conversations lately about how her family might react if she told them, how our lives might look if she were free, how she often thinks she'd rather come home to me at the end of the day. But she's not an overly emotive person, and very often those intense conversations are followed by a couple of days of her backing off and being a little less available. I've learned not to push, and surely enough, when I follow her lead and leave her alone for a day or two, she will come back ready to have emotional intimacy again.

She sits in my home and talks about the vacations they're planning to take (they're very well-off, and I am not - I can't afford the type of world traveling they do or the lifestyle they have) and it's rough for many reasons. It hurts knowing she's having a romantic vacation with him and plays the role of doting wife. It hurts knowing I could never take her on a trip remotely like this or afford the way she loves to spend money on expensive clothes, shoes, etc. - though she's assured me many times "money isn't everything" and "it isn't a competition." It hurts knowing I'll be seeing social media posts of the two of them in pictures, watching our mutual friends "like" her messages about how great he is and how happy they are.

So why do I stay? I suppose "because I love her" is too predictable an answer. But the truth is that although I only get part of her, and it is almost always on her terms, I'd rather have part of her and feel that wonderful connection, that love, than not feel it at all. I adore her with all that I am.

But tonight? Sitting at home alone instead of snuggling with her and extending our afternoon all weekend... knowing essentially all my friends are with people and I'm here alone, this is when it's *hard.*
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Old 14th May 2017, 1:34 AM   #2
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This affair is going to kill you inside the longer you stay it. You're in love with her and I hate to say it but she isn't in love with you. She's in lust and getting something so different than what she experiences at home with her husband. She's getting the best of both worlds. You've invested way too much into her all the meanwhile she's living life with her husband and family.

I really hope you can detach from her and end things with her. She may care about you deeply but she's never going to give up her life and everything she's become accustomed to, divorce and be with you.

Clinging on to the bits and pieces she gives you will eventually not be enough and you'll want more and more as the months or even years go by.

I hope you find love for yourself instead of getting it all from her. Sitting home alone while others are out there happy and able to live life openly is going to wear you down.

Another aspect, your lives are entwined so when (and it will come out, affairs usually do) her husband finds out about the affair, your mutual friends will pick sides. The fallout personally will be huge.
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Old 14th May 2017, 4:40 AM   #3
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Please don't sit at home alone.

You are wasting your life. Stay in love with her and see her if you must. You still need social contact with others... family, friends, interest groups.

You will kill yourself if you don't. Believe me for I have been there.

Poppy.
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Old 14th May 2017, 10:21 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BreakingWave View Post
So things started up again about a month ago and they've just progressed quickly. We spent the entire day together, and it was fantastic. We made love, laughed, had incredibly sweet moments together... and then I had to watch her get into her car and go home. I sent her a text about two hours ago telling her how happy I was to have had such a great day with her. I haven't gotten a response (she's opened the snap and I know she carries her phone with her CONSTANTLY.)

I am worried that while the day was perfect for me, having such an intense day of intimacy with me after trying to end the affair might be giving her a hard time. I want to reach out and talk to her about it, but I also want to respect that maybe she needs to process it on her own. I have no idea. And isn't that one of the struggles we all share? Knowing our MW or MM is home with the family while we sit alone missing them, knowing the hours that drag on for us often fly by for them.

I'll be out of town from Monday through Wednesday, so chances are we won't see each other for almost a week. Today was a great way to say goodbye; I'm just missing her already.
She is doing what is best for her, period. In everything that has happened between you two, it seems to me that she has only thought of herself and what she needs and wants. Sure, she might have had a fleeting thought - or even a grand analysis, but you should be certain, that when her thoughts led to action, she was in it for herself only. From telling you of her confused feelings, to starting with the inappropriateness, to then dialing things back... to spending this entire day with you, knowing how you felt about her... taking advantage of the fact that her husband wouldn't suspect. It has been all about her. And now, you should take this time, to make your life about you.

I quoted you above... Something like this happened to me, too, except xMM assured me we would be seeing each other later in the day. He never called and he never showed up. During the night after the last time I saw him, I had a dream that I was with my cousin and another friend at a nightclub, and my cousin had been beautifully dressed and made up, but she had been crying uncontrollably on my shoulder as the upbeat music blasted and happy people danced and mingled around us. When I awakened, I realized our roles in the dream had been reversed, and it was my turn to cry in real life. And I had not cried uncontrollably since the sudden death of my mother...

I had never experienced such an intense anger at xMM during the entirety of the affair. It finally became clear that he had used me; something I had not thoroughly considered or felt. I remained angry as h3ll for two days. And then the sadness came around for the next two days. A week went by, and nothing - not a word from him.

I had been preparing for the inevitable end for many months. I found ways, with few friends in my life, to spend my time - times when I knew I would ruminate heavily or miss his presence terribly.

But still. Hope dies a hard death in an affair.

If you could stand outside the window of your affair, what would you see if you were a third party?

I saw a MM that acted as if my role in his life was to provide him an escape and untold sexual pleasure.

He might've been kind sometimes, but overall that didn't matter. The kindness I showed him didn't matter: we were hurting each other. I was helping him to hurt his wife (and in turn hurt himself). He had been helping me destroy my esteem. It got to a point where both of us were having trouble sleeping and then struggling through our shifts at work.

I heard a high degree of ambivalence when he talked about "us" and redirection when I talked about my feelings. It had always been all about him. Breadcrumbs served to keep me hooked for servicing him, his ego, his needs. My needs fell by the wayside. I believed he did care for me, he just did not care enough. I can only speak for myself, I guess.

I, too, allowed the possibility of a real relationship with a single person slip through my fingers while he remained married.

I had hope that he could be mine one day. The hope died a hard death, and even to this day, I sometimes wish he would call. I realize, though, that he is not going to say anything we haven't rehashed a million times. To save myself, I had to let him go. It is time you save yourself - and her, because so long as you are an option, she may keep returning on a whim. You have to put obstacles in her way. She has made her choice to stay where she is. No more interference in your life.
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Old 14th May 2017, 1:28 PM   #5
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Thank you!

I want to thank all of you for reading my post and for giving me such honest, kind feedback and insight. You've all brought up very important questions for me to consider - I have often thought about how I might advise a friend in a similar situation - and ideas for what I need to do next.

Before I became involved with MW, I would have described myself as happy. I wasn't thrilled about being single, but I'd been in unfulfilling relationships and was quite certain I'd rather be alone than with the wrong person. I was looking forward to meeting someone, but basically content being single. I was very committed to living a healthy lifestyle and exercising - I worked out and also jogged about 20-30 miles a week. Of course, soon I was using the hours that used to be devoted to working out to seeing MW because that was the most convenient time of day for her.

She texted after my post last night to say hello and let me know she was "freaking out" after our intense day together, but that I shouldn't worry and she was working through it but didn't want to talk about anything yet. This isn't alarming; I'm a talk-things-outer but she's definitely more of a work-it-out-alone person.

Starting today, I'm going to make sure I prioritize my workouts and try to schedule social things with friends. (I haven't been letting that fall completely by the wayside, but of course we have so many mutual friends that it's difficult to be around them and not be able to be honest about what's really on my mind!) No more making myself available all the time just in case she's free.

I often ask myself if I told her I was out, would she fight to keep us or would she just feel relief. And... I'm not at all sure about the answer.

All of you are now out of your affairs. How long did they all last? How long before you finally did the hardest thing imaginable and told the person you loved more than anyone that it was over?
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Old 14th May 2017, 1:34 PM   #6
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I had never experienced such an intense anger at xMM during the entirety of the affair. It finally became clear that he had used me; something I had not thoroughly considered or felt. I remained angry as h3ll for two days. And then the sadness came around for the next two days. A week went by, and nothing - not a word from him.
I am so sorry that you experienced this - it is especially cruel to have done this without a word, without an explanation. Even when she told me we should be just friends and we spent several weeks doing that, I did feel hurt and confusion but never true fury, because at least she was honest about her reasons and they were reasons with which I couldn't argue. It sounds like your xMM was a true coward in the end, and I hate that for you.
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Old 15th May 2017, 3:11 PM   #7
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Let me be clear, Breaking Wave,
The process of actually ending the affair took quite some time (more than six months). I sat on the fence, because I wanted to keep him in my life and he wanted things to stay exactly as they had been between us. It wasn't his choice, not at first anyway, to end anything. I saw him as my friend, because he had been there for me following a crappy break up with a single guy, plus we worked together...

When I first broached the subject, I was scared to death! It was over the phone. I was shaking, and fighting with my thoughts. I had been too afraid to say the words. I expected he would say, "Oh, okay then..." but that did not happen. He "fought" for the affair, and in my foggy brain, I thought, "Oh, he loves me!!" On this board, I learned that although he might have cared for me, it was more likely that it would've just been easier for him to keep me than to groom another OW :-( (this hurt my feelings, of course).

He was not interested in letting me (read: the affair) go, and I was on the fence. Like you, I accepted part time over nothing at all. As time went on, the pain became greater than the pleasure. We talked every day. We slept together. Each time he went home, he was going home to someone else (a legal spouse that he must've wanted to be with...). When he left, I felt physically ill, like he was being torn from me. I told him I couldn't stand it, and expected him to do something. He never did anything that I could see... Based on the few things that he did say, it became apparent to me that he had began acting towards his BW in such a way that he may have been almost forcing her hand in trying to get her to divorce... or maybe not. I became more and more aware of what many husbands/boyfriends do for their significant others, and I became more and more resentful of xMM. I even started dating someone else. I had been preparing for an inevitable end. And then I learned of their new baby (after I chose MM over the new single guy). I saw pictures of their life together. It hurt me so bad. At this point, I went NC but went back into it eight weeks later. Everything deteriorated from there. The relationship was toxic.

With everything that has happened, I do not put all of the blame on him. He did not act alone. I think ending it was very hard for him, too, for whatever reason(s). Maybe he thinks walking away "on a good note" was for the best. I have no idea. But I do know this: there is no easy way to end it. It's gonna hurt, no matter where you are on the triangle. I can only know what I did and what my own reasons were and why.

Your situation is different from mine. You can see inside their life together, and you can put yourself in her shoes. Would you leave your loving spouse of 20 years, where things are far easier and someone is taking care of you? You have history and children and a home and _________. I know you said clarity is so hard to come by, but it is not. You already know what you need to do for you. You just don't want to do it. I've been there, done that. It is hard. When she contacts you, it's harder. She's your "friend" and you have inappropriate feelings for her. If you want things to be better in the long run, you will have to step back so you can sort out your feelings and your thoughts. Clarity will also be SUPER EASY to come by if you put yourself in her BH shoes... imagine what he would do to you and/or her if he found out about your affair. He might wreck your world.

My advice: back way, way away and do it as fast as you can.

I wish you happiness and patience in your journey.
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Last edited by Vivir; 15th May 2017 at 3:20 PM.. Reason: emphasis
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Old 15th May 2017, 3:44 PM   #8
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Perhaps view this reiationship as there are two people being cheated and as a result living a life not as fulfilling as they should: you and her husband. Is this acceptable to you?
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Old 15th May 2017, 4:49 PM   #9
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Rich husband, expensive clothes and vacations, too busy for you unless she's needing some kind of emotional or sexual validation... Do you ever ask yourself how you became the 'yard guy' for a wealthy, entitled, grub? You're not even a yard guy with papers. You're an illegal yard guy who scaled Trump's wall for $3 an hour. That sucks. Get out now and find yourself a real woman who is going to adore you and acknowledge you and know how much value you bring to her life. Good luck!
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Old 16th May 2017, 10:14 PM   #10
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Feel so sad about everything. MW told me she's "freaking out" - our contact has been limited in the last couple of days. I know I need to assume it's over and begin living like it's over. I know I need to accept that it has to be over until and unless she's ready to give me an actual, in-the-open relationship. I know that everyone giving me advice to find a "real" partner is speaking from places of experience and love. And I'm not so naive to think my situation is 'different' or 'special.' I value your insights very much.

When I contemplate never being with her again, letting go of our relationship as well as our friendship - because I don't think I have the strength to be around her and just be her friend, pretending everything is okay - I honestly feel so hopeless I can barely breathe.


But there are times like this. Going hours and hours without a word, without even telling me goodnight or asking how I'm doing while I'm out of town. She's hurting me a lot by being so indifferent to me (at least acting like it) and that's a way that, even as a friend, she shouldn't want me to feel.
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Old 16th May 2017, 10:21 PM   #11
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Get out now and find yourself a real woman who is going to adore you and acknowledge you and know how much value you bring to her life. Good luck!
Thank you - I understand the rationality of this advice. I did try dating someone else a couple of months ago, after MW told me she wanted to just be friends. The woman I was dating was terrific but I felt physically nauseous during intimacy and thought constantly of MW. I am honestly worried that I will never feel this way about anyone again. After all, it's the first time in nearly 40 years of life that I've met anyone I could see myself with forever. What are the odds it would actually happen again?
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Old 17th May 2017, 6:10 AM   #12
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Like someone said, find a women who can share her major part of her life with you. This women has a family, she will only give the rest of the time and energy after being done with her family. Also this isnt going to change for they rest of your lives.

Although I agree that she should have clearly told you rather than stringing you along but hey we are the one who got into it right?. Take care of yourself and find someone special not some one elses special.
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Old 18th May 2017, 5:53 PM   #13
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Thanks, Feengreen. I am trying to believe that one day I'll be interested in someone else. Right now I'm just not. Was out of town for three days, and got back today. MW did contact me - she has not stopped making sure to "check in and say hi" in her words, and told me not to worry, that she's working through things on her own.

This is a pattern whenever we get very close emotionally or physically. She almost always withdraws right away and goes on an enormous guilt trip wherein she doesn't flirt or try to make plans to see me. In the past, she's always come back, and that used to give me a lot of comfort. Recently, she's told me that she is not going to leave her marriage (at least she isn't making false promises) because, despite no longer being in love with her husband and recognizing that they're becoming very different people and she isn't getting her needs met, the decision to leave would impact dozens of other people whom she cares about very much.

I know some people on this forum have been involved with serial adulterers. She has told me - and I absolutely believe her - that she has never been unfaithful to her husband before. She's never told me she's in love with me, though one time I did tell her I felt that she must be because otherwise she wouldn't be risking so much to be with me, and she nodded in the closest thing I've gotten to an actual statement that it is true. I also know she's a practical person. She won't be walking away from a stable, established situation to start life over again with anyone, much less a *woman* when she's never been involved with one before. She's flat-out told me that she doesn't think she can ever be what I want or deserve, and that as a friend she wants to see me with someone who can and will put me first. As people have pointed out, she can't even put me second. After her husband, she has a lot of other obligations. Her kids are adults but they'll always come before me, and honestly I can't fault her for that. I think that's probably how it *should* be (although I also believe that adult children are also in control of their relationships with their parents and how involved they'd like to be with them - it would be very different if she had young kids still dependent on their parents providing a very stable home life.)

And yet, it still hurts that she didn't want to try harder today. That she hasn't at least called or expressed that she misses me. Perhaps she doesn't. I have to acknowledge that possibility.

I asked if she'd like to get together after work tomorrow. She hasn't responded. From now on, I think I have to protect my dignity by not asking for attention. I'll let her come to me or ask me to spend time, and in the meantime make my own plans if an offer comes up. No more blocking time out "just in case" or "because she's usually free on this day, at this time." It's only fair if we only spend time together when it's convenient for me, because that's as much effort as she's putting in.

Do I still have a fantasy that love will conquer all and she'll decide she wants to be with me, out in the open? I probably always will. As I've said before, I've never truly been in love before and because it took me until I was nearly 40 - and with someone I'd known for years, so we had already done that getting-to-know-you thing that I hate with dates but really enjoy with friends.

And for me it's really scary because I'm gay, but I'm a feminine woman attracted to other feminine women. This is going to sound like a big fat generalization, but trust me, it's true - most lesbians aren't the kind of women that I'm attracted to, nor am I terribly interested in most of the activities and things lesbian meet up groups really do. Yes, I've tried. I've joined meet ups and done online dating. I've never met anyone I've really clicked with.

I'm just so convinced MW is the only one for me, though my rational brain accepts that the advice I'm getting here is good. For me it feels like choosing between what she can offer right now - which isn't enough for me - and being alone. Perhaps being alone is better in the sense that it isn't a constant kick in the self-esteem. But I just... I love her. I want her. I miss her terribly when she isn't around.
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Old 18th May 2017, 10:47 PM   #14
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Got good and mad at her tonight. I believe she truly cares for me, but that she's been using me as a human ego stroke. She knows I'm very much in love with her (I've told her many times) and continues to string me along, drawing me in very close with physical and emotional intimacy and then pulling away from me time after time, knowing I've always been willing to forgive her.

But you know what? That's all kind of bull****.

There's a total cycle here. We'll have a wonderful couple of days or even a week with fantastic, emotionally intimate conversations. It will lead to a brief period of fantastic physical intimacy and closeness. Then, she'll feel tremendous guilt and pull away from me to go be the perfect, doting wife to make herself feel better. She starts to realize what she lacks in her life so she comes calling again and gets to be the center of someone's attention. The entire cycle then repeats.

I think y'all have nailed it - she thinks only of herself. She used to check in and see if I was okay, she'd tell me she feels awful when she has to leave me, she'd flirt with me through texts and send sexy snaps. But lately, she hasn't asked how I feel about being so loved and adored one day only to be treated like a casual friend for the rest of the week. We talked about this a lot when we got back together, and I told her this was the most painful part - I would go from feeling like we were super close and open, and then I would be shut out again. She promised to do better about that. She hasn't.

I have a choice. When she inevitably tries to draw me in again, I can keep playing her game. Or I can tell her that when she plays out this cycle, I feel totally unimportant and discarded. I don't feel like a second priority right now. I feel like a NON-priority. As a friend, she would be furious if anyone else treated me like this. And ultimately I'd have to tell her I can't be her friend right now. That as long as she's around me, I'm going to be reminded of how awful it feels when she pulls me in and then pushes me away.

The thought of doing that scares the hell out of me. I don't want to lose her, as a lover or friend. There's still a part of me that *hopes.* But I read all the posts here and recognize so many patterns that I see playing out in my own relationship. I feel so physically sick right now.
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Old 19th May 2017, 4:27 AM   #15
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Hi Breaking Wave, have you been onto the Diva Blue Rooms site? It is a forum for lesbian and bi women, not that your betrayal is any different to anyone else's, but they have a lot of support for women in similar situations to your. A friend of mine found it really helpful when she was in a similar situation to you. She has been in an affair with a married woman for 4 years, they discussed marriage, children and were known as a couple to everyone but the BS. My friend was very much in love with her, the MW said that it was hard for her as she was known as being 'straight', had older children and for her it wasn't just leaving a marriage, it was also having to come out as well and she wasn't ready to do that, also feared her children not understanding.

My friend was heartbroken, but tried to see it from the MW's point of view. This might not be helpful for you. My friend is now married and has twin boys who they had by artificial insemination with a gay friend. They are one very happy family, she says it helped her to understand how hard it was for the WS as she had to accept a different view of her own sexuality that she hadn't explored. Saying that, my friend also says that she broke the golden rule, never go out with married women, I agree.
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