Q&A Is this as Good as it Gets in Our Recovery?

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Question: 

We are 900 days out from D-day. We have passed all of the "this should take this long" markers. We did EMSO about 7 months in. It helped us tremendously. My husband dutifully participated in the course and has willingly gone to other seminars and we have read books too. He chose "trickle truth" which extended the pain and the process, but I believe I at least know most of it and certainly "enough". What bothers me most is that he has had NO brokenness, remorse, or what I would call repentance. He can talk about it almost as if it is another person who betrayed me. He has never shed a tear. I have cried me a river. He has been plenty angry - so there is emotion!! but sometimes it seems like he does not believe it was actually him, and I especially perceive that he doesn't believe it was "that BAD". I have tried to purpose my love and forgiveness to be unconditional. I am very grateful that he chose to stay with me and that he has worked hard to rebuild. But there is a closure I just can't get, and a deep seated unrest. Is this as good as it gets?

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Wish I knew

I wish I knew who you are that submitted this question. I have about the same timeline and the same issue. No remorse, no tears, and no true empathy from my husband. I have done Harboring Hope it was not that helpful. I have read books, looked for sources other than AR, done counseling together and apart until the councilor told us until my husband was willing to do the hard work to reconnect with is emotions he was not sure we would progress. My husband did Hope For Healing.....well he half way did it.....not very effective. My husband has suggested that we go to a EMS weekend...but we have done EMSO and are still in our Married for life group (for the time being). I love my husband, but I am not sure I can ever fully heal if I remain with him the way that things are now. He can't seem to understand that because he thinks that he has "done enough" to as he puts it "repair the damage" and he thinks that no matter what he does it will never be enough. So WHO EVER you are that posted this question Know that I really understand what you are saying and honestly I was very disappointed in Rick's "answer".

SLM

Wish I knew

I wish I knew who you are that submitted this question. I have about the same timeline and the same issue. No remorse, no tears, and no true empathy from my husband. I have done Harboring Hope it was not that helpful. I have read books, looked for sources other than AR, done counseling together and apart until the councilor told us until my husband was willing to do the hard work to reconnect with is emotions he was not sure we would progress. My husband did Hope For Healing.....well he half way did it.....not very effective. My husband has suggested that we go to a EMS weekend...but we have done EMSO and are still in our Married for life group (for the time being). I love my husband, but I am not sure I can ever fully heal if I remain with him the way that things are now. He can't seem to understand that because he thinks that he has "done enough" to as he puts it "repair the damage" and he thinks that no matter what he does it will never be enough. So WHO EVER you are that posted this question Know that I really understand what you are saying and honestly I was very disappointed in Rick's "answer".

SLM

I hear you... it hurts

thank you for your encouraging words! I sincerely believe there is a level of breakthrough we haven't reached, but I am willing to persevere and work on my own heart until it comes. It helps so much to know you are not alone. It especially helps to realize you're not crazy!! (Although I think I got pretty close).

It's ALL about choices

Dear SLM, I am the one who submitted the question. At first, I too was a bit disappointed with Rick's answer. It felt more like a commercial. In reality though, he can't discern that much from my question without "knowing us" or more of the full story. My husband is charming. Anyone who knows about our situation says that he would be the last person they would ever think would do something like that. No wonder he has a hard time accepting it himself. I am not excusing him, and believe me, I have wanted to slap him up side the head with reality. It all gets down to CHOICES. He made choices to live a secret life for 6 years. He made choices to be unfaithful me. He has to make the choice to deal with his stuff or not. I have every right to leave... but I have chosen to stay.

Thank you for submitting this

Thank you for submitting this question! I too am on about the same timeline...actually 4 years out from dday 1 but only 8 months out from the last significant detail ( dday 10 since he has trickle-truthed me for most of that time). He also shows very little to no remorse or sorrow or even repentance over his 20 year infidelity/deception. He always throws everything back on me when I ask questions--"Do you want to heal?" My answer, "Well yes, why else would I be asking questions or doing all this work?" We have done EMS twice, I did Harboring Hope early on before I had the "real" truth, and he did Hope for Healing when he realized I wasn't just "getting over it". I am in individual counseling as well, but have been unable to reach an acceptance or closure and move on. There have been no real apologies from him, but a lot of anger and verbal abuse/ physical intimidation up until about 3 months ago. Since it will be 4 years on Christmas Day, I have been feeling worried that I may never be able to move on. I guard my heart and although I know I love him (it's a 38 year marriage), I am reluctant to re-engage in the marriage too much for fear of being hurt again. Am working on this in therapy right now and have enrolled in Harboring Hope for a second time. I am no longer basing my healing on him and I am determined to be happy with or without him. I am so glad and encouraged that others have these feelings so far out from dday and still have them after taking some AR courses... makes me realize that maybe it's not just me and I'm not alone in my feelings. Thanks for your question.

You are not alone

Indeed there is great comfort in hearing and relating to other's stories. I guess misery really does love company. No... Actually, we all know that's not it!!! For me, I lost myself self or at least a part of me died. I am on a journey to find the new me. I look at everything differently. I don't feel jaded, or even bitter. I know I can't go back and feel the same way i did or BELIEVE the way I did because that got blown up. I do want my husband's healing to happen for his sake. I don't want him shamed, punished, nor is there any penance needed. I want him free, and I want whatever is broken in him that allowed him to do this to our family - to be revealed and fixed. In the meantime I will continue to love him, be faithful to him, and pray for our complete healing.