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Stuck in a hell of my own making


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 1st November 2017, 11:19 AM   #1
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Stuck in a hell of my own making

In September I ended my five year long distance A. I've been unhappily married for a while now. I have been unable to end it because of children and financial constraints. My partner in this crime was also married with children. We met way back when we were teenagers, hooked up in our early twenties. At that time both of us thought the other one wasn't interested in anything long term and due to this lack of upfront communication, we both ended up married to other people. We didn't discover this until long after it was too late. We kept in contact as friends throughout the years until five years ago both of us, unhappy in our marriages, fell down the rabbit hole of an affair. He works in the military and moves every four years and we would only see each other about every six months in carefully planned meetings. As hard as things were sometimes, we made each other happy and grew extremely close to the point that we would talk almost everyday.
Our relationship only seemed to improve throughout the five years, we are highly compatible, we fight fairly, and loved each other deeply. However, it became apparent to me that a promise of a future together was becoming less and less evident. He was the first one to bring up the possibility of a future together (it wasn't me), he also said that he was definitely going to leave he just didn't know when. But future talk was not often spoken and became more and more uncomfortable. Then at the beginning of the year it was 90% chance of leaving. Then in July he emailed that he wondered if he would ever leave. In all of this, I tried being supportive. I was patient and understanding and encouraged him to hold out a little longer. Neither of us can make a move right now living so far away and both having kids, so just wait a few more years. His guilt was eating at him though.
That letter never really left my head, I found out from a mutual friend of his W some information that led me to conclude that he was never going to leave. So I called him shortly after, told him I couldn't do this anymore, I needed some sort of safety net and he wouldn't give it to me of course, so I said this is it. I know it shocked him. One minute we were fine and the next minute I ended it.
I am now stuck in hell. One day I feel I am strong and proud for being brave enough to end it. There were so many times during the affair I would almost have a full blown panic attack because I thought he was going to end things. I never thought I was strong enough to do it but I did.
Another part of me is severely in a mess. That is the part of me that breaks down and cries because all I want is my partner back. I want my good morning texts back and I want to tell him about what is going on in my life.
There is another part that feels numb. I am a very busy, productive, neat freak, gym rat. Most of my days are spent now, doing the bare minimums to get by and it hasn't escaped the notice of others in my life.
And the other part of me is angry, angry at him and angry at myself. I am currently NC, which I broke only two weeks after. I pelted him with the preverbal break up question of "why?". Why did you start all of this and continue all of this, what was your intent? It didn't make me feel any better. Anyone wanting to break NC and get answers, word to the wise...It won't do any good, it won't make you feel better either. His response to my questioning was that he was a "coward". Which I didn't understand why he was ok labeling himself a coward.
I want to be over this but I know part of me is still hanging on in hope. He was my blue french horn (HIMYM reference). Wanting some insight from others in similar situations. Not interested in judgemental comments about how I should think about my poor H and kids. You don't know all the details and I have been on all sides of this. (I know what it is like to be cheated on and my mother left my father for another man). I am asking for insight and support from those who understand, so I can get past this and become and better person.
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Old 1st November 2017, 12:20 PM   #2
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Sorry that you're hurting but you did the right thing by ending it with him.

Time to reflect and get counseling. Figure things out, fix what's broken inside of you, your marriage and what you feel towards your husband. Your escape from 'life' has been this MM for many years and he's become a crutch to your happiness.
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Old 1st November 2017, 12:31 PM   #3
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It sounds to me like you are exactly where you should be. You worked very hard to achieve this "reward." You deserve it. Now feel it and learn from it.

When you act so dishonorably this is the result. When you seek out others to be close to who are dishonorable people, this is the result. It is called consequences. Face them. Grow up. Become a better person.

This could be a gift and a turning point for you. But from what you have written I very much doubt it. You will be in denial and blaming others and not accepting your role in this.
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Old 1st November 2017, 1:55 PM   #4
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Been there, done that. Give it a lot of time. Realize he never was going to leave his wife for you. My exMM who I was with for almost 5 years and who I spent almost everyday with, gave me the same bs. He even gave me a diamond ring, proposed, and promised to find a way for us to be happy together...all instigated by him. It was all lies to get me to sleep with him. I now see through all that and realize all men lie to get their selfish needs met. I think we would all be rich if we got a dollar for every time we read on here that the MM said he was going to leave his wife for the OW. I was so naive and you were as well. They are players. Go on with you life and chalk it up to a lesson learned.
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Old 1st November 2017, 2:37 PM   #5
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Been there, done that. Give it a lot of time. Realize he never was going to leave his wife for you. My exMM who I was with for almost 5 years and who I spent almost everyday with, gave me the same bs. He even gave me a diamond ring, proposed, and promised to find a way for us to be happy together...all instigated by him. It was all lies to get me to sleep with him. I now see through all that and realize all men lie to get their selfish needs met. I think we would all be rich if we got a dollar for every time we read on here that the MM said he was going to leave his wife for the OW. I was so naive and you were as well. They are players. Go on with you life and chalk it up to a lesson learned.
I wonder if their brains are so compartmentalized that they believe they actually are living 2 happy, totally separate lives. Mine told me once that if he'd met me in my early 20's he'd have married me. I laughed and said "you would have been 10 years old!" He kinda stumbled and said, "well... I mean..." Oh right, you mean in your completely made-up fantasy world in which we're the same age. OMG.
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Old 1st November 2017, 3:05 PM   #6
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Been there, done that. Give it a lot of time. Realize he never was going to leave his wife for you. My exMM who I was with for almost 5 years and who I spent almost everyday with, gave me the same bs. He even gave me a diamond ring, proposed, and promised to find a way for us to be happy together...all instigated by him. It was all lies to get me to sleep with him. I now see through all that and realize all men lie to get their selfish needs met. I think we would all be rich if we got a dollar for every time we read on here that the MM said he was going to leave his wife for the OW. I was so naive and you were as well. They are players. Go on with you life and chalk it up to a lesson learned.
I think we all think that our relationship is different. We hear the warnings and stories from other people. And we think of course not, men don't ever leave their wives. I'm not stupid and I'm not that type of girl to fall into that situation or trap. Until we find ourselves in that exact situation. I was never going to be that type of woman, yet here I am. I am one and I was one of the one's who believed he would leave because I believed we were different. Our situation and story was different. He's a "good" guy, I've known him forever. No, it wasn't any different.
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Old 1st November 2017, 3:30 PM   #7
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I know what you're going through right now, I know how much it hurts and I feel for you.
You shouldn't have to go through this by yourself. Do you have a sister, mother or close friend who will support you?
Going NC is like entering deep, stormy waters. You will be flooded with repetetive thoughts and intense, conflicting emotions. It is a lot to handle. You need a sympathetic person to give you a hand, besides the obvious benefit of professional counselling.
What is going on in your marriage?
I know, you don't really care right now. All you care about is your AP. Still, you have to focus on your reality. Is there any hope for your marriage? Do you want a divorce? Can you see yourself revealing the A to your spouse?
What is the best outcome from your perspective?
I know you are probably in too much pain and confusion to even think about facing these issuea, but you really need to.
A five year affair is a lot to handle. It suggests a deeo disconnect in your life. Either between you and your spouse or wuthin yourself. Perhaps both.
In any event, it is clear that you need to take a good look at your life and start taking action to fix it.
I know you asked for advice on how to deal and this may not read as such advice but it is.
NC, at least for me, was mainly about feeling helpless. Begining to deal with issues in your life helps you to regain control. Hopefully, in time, it will lead to you feeling better.
Personally, NC was total hell for me but I stuck with it for a year. I had the support of 2 close confidants. I tried to take it a day at a time. I used to get through urges to break NC by thinking of child birth-just get through this contraction and breathe until it hurts less.
One thing kept me strong- I knew that breaking NC would give me an experience of failiure and that I would lose faith in myself. It also worked the other way around. Every time I breathed through another hurricane of pain, I knew I could do it and when the next one came around, I had my positive experience to fall back on.
Be strong and look far ahead, don't let this moment break you.
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Old 1st November 2017, 4:59 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by imsosad View Post
I know what you're going through right now, I know how much it hurts and I feel for you.
You shouldn't have to go through this by yourself. Do you have a sister, mother or close friend who will support you?
Going NC is like entering deep, stormy waters. You will be flooded with repetetive thoughts and intense, conflicting emotions. It is a lot to handle. You need a sympathetic person to give you a hand, besides the obvious benefit of professional counselling.
What is going on in your marriage?
I know, you don't really care right now. All you care about is your AP. Still, you have to focus on your reality. Is there any hope for your marriage? Do you want a divorce? Can you see yourself revealing the A to your spouse?
What is the best outcome from your perspective?
I know you are probably in too much pain and confusion to even think about facing these issuea, but you really need to.
A five year affair is a lot to handle. It suggests a deeo disconnect in your life. Either between you and your spouse or wuthin yourself. Perhaps both.
In any event, it is clear that you need to take a good look at your life and start taking action to fix it.
I know you asked for advice on how to deal and this may not read as such advice but it is.
NC, at least for me, was mainly about feeling helpless. Begining to deal with issues in your life helps you to regain control. Hopefully, in time, it will lead to you feeling better.
Personally, NC was total hell for me but I stuck with it for a year. I had the support of 2 close confidants. I tried to take it a day at a time. I used to get through urges to break NC by thinking of child birth-just get through this contraction and breathe until it hurts less.
One thing kept me strong- I knew that breaking NC would give me an experience of failiure and that I would lose faith in myself. It also worked the other way around. Every time I breathed through another hurricane of pain, I knew I could do it and when the next one came around, I had my positive experience to fall back on.
Be strong and look far ahead, don't let this moment break you.
Thank you for your support, It's what I need. My mother and I have a poor relationship. Two of my closest friends know. She is supportive but I know my story is draining on her, so I try not to bring it up unless I really need her. My other best friend has been an awesome support, talked me down from breaking no contact several times. However this friend is the childhood friend of my exMM. (I know, but he's known the situation for several years and I trust him completely). I am also in professional counseling and go about every two weeks.
I want a divorce. I haven't been happy with him since before the AP. I feel I am being extremely unfair by sticking around. I am torn. I don't want to hurt the man or my kids, but I don't think it's something marriage counseling can fix either. There has been so many times I just wanted to blurt it out "I'm not happy. I want to leave. I'm having an affair with ***, I'm sorry" But knowing the destruction level that would cause in both families has kept my mouth shut. Leaving my exMM out of this. The outcome I want is for me to leave and everyone be ok. My fear is that if I leave it will destroy everyone in my family but me and if I stay, I will continue to be a phony.
I like your child birth idea with NC. Did he contact you during the NC period and how did you handle it? My fear is him contacting me and me losing my self control and responding. And then having to start all over again.
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Old 1st November 2017, 7:21 PM   #9
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Do your best to get our of your miserable marriage. It's just wasted years when you live like this.
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'Love is giving someone the power to destroy you, but trusting them not to'
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Old 2nd November 2017, 7:04 PM   #10
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I wonder if their brains are so compartmentalized that they believe they actually are living 2 happy, totally separate lives. Mine told me once that if he'd met me in my early 20's he'd have married me. I laughed and said "you would have been 10 years old!" He kinda stumbled and said, "well... I mean..." Oh right, you mean in your completely made-up fantasy world in which we're the same age. OMG.
Lol, jah. Mine would go off on long text monologues about how he wanted to live in [big U.S. city] with me, go grocery shopping with me, take road trips with me, and all kinds of other mundane, day-to-day things. He was completely in his own little la la-land. I was always the one to be like, well, how do we actually do this no contact thing once you fly back to your wife of many years? Because, real world, buddy.
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Old 2nd November 2017, 7:24 PM   #11
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I feel for you having been there. And it does take time to get over. A LONG time. However, there are things you can do to try and feel better.

First, Block him, his number, social media, everything. Do not peek at his social media.
Second, understand the situation is hopeless. You will never be with him, accept it, the right person at the wrong time is the wrong person
Third, Make the effort to try and have a good life, get your groove back, love yourself, workout, take all that energy spent on grieving and channel it to positive endeavors
Fourth, do not do anything about your marriage yet. Emotionally, you're not ready to make that decision. Wait 6 months, heal, and then evaluate. It wouldn't hurt to try and do individual therapy. You have a lot of pent up resentment towards your husband.

Good luck
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Old 3rd November 2017, 9:40 AM   #12
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I was in a 4 year affair. It's along story and it's all there if you want to read.

I will tell you this. Your MM absolutely cared for you and there were probably many times he really did want to leave his wife and be with you, but it was never going to happen. Why? Because the known is better then the unknown and men don't like change. Hell, I don't like chance either but women are emotional and we think with our hearts. Men are more rational. Unless their marriage is completely done, they dont want to leave. They don't want to be the bad guy And most of them do love their wives. They also do love their mistress but in the mistress box. Took me along time to realize that. They love us, but as the OW. The feeling are real, but they are real in that box.

Men compartmentalize very well.
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Old 5th November 2017, 2:52 AM   #13
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It's only been two months, HarleyBell. You're going to have to go through this hell to get out of it, unfortunately. The good days, the bad days, the worse days, the days of dying to reach out and intermittent days of feeling absolutely great - that is all normal, given the newness of your affair ending. I mean, the affair lasted for FIVE years! There is a good chance that it will take at least five MONTHS to begin to process all that has happened and maybe (?) start to feel better. As I wrote to another member in another thread, the going consensus around here is that you won't begin to turn a corner on consistently feeling better for at least six months of full-on No Contact. And given that, it definitely matters WHAT you do with the time... you may have to fight your thoughts and feelings here, but you have to fight to make you, not your xMM, the priority.

There are a couple of members here who have had affairs that lasted just as long or even longer than yours. Poppy47 comes to mind, though there are definitely others. Read through those threads, in particular, for additional helpful advice and insight.
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Old 5th November 2017, 3:31 PM   #14
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I think one of the most common questions on this board is how long will it take to feel better.
I certainly know that was constantly on my mind when I was NC.
I know the answers vary, but many offer some type of timeline.
I respectfully disagree with any timeline. In fact, I think that one of the best things a person in NC should do is disregard time.
Ever since my AP and I divorced and got together, people around us have been sharing affair stories with me, probably because it's hard to find someone to discuss this topic with and they expect that I'd be sympathetic, which I am. (Others expect me to encourage their affair, which I don't.)
A common theme is people still thinking about the affair (and often missing the AP) for ages and ages after the affair ends.
Something about affairs make them trickier to get over than normal break ups.
This is not meant to discourage you, OP. My intention is to normalise. It's normal to struggle and it might take a very long time to heal. Sometimes we get in to a silly race of trying to be "over it" already. Accept that it will take time. Let go of a timeline and try to focus on the actual process.
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Old 5th November 2017, 4:19 PM   #15
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I'm a little off script here, but what I'm hearing is this MM has always been something that held you from actually being IN your marriage. Of course, I fully expect you to deny this because it's what women in your position do. Of course I expect you to tell me about how we don't know your story and how your husband did this and that...None of that changes the fact that you married someone, while believing someone else was a better fit, than you kept that person in your life. This outcome is a predictable one.

Of course your affair is also predictable in it's outcome.

As far as men's ablity to compartmentalize, yep we do that well, MM do it very well for one particular reason, affairs have no impact on how men veiw Thier wives or marriages. Even when he actually has feelings for the OW, it still doesn't impact what his relationship with his wife. This is why men don't leave. 9% that is what statistics say about men leaving for the OW. Yet the vast majority of OM/MW think it will happen for them.
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