Why Not Commit to the Marriage? Part 1

Committing to get healthy doesn't mean committing to save the marriage. Today Samuel begins a short series on reasons why couples typically won't commit to getting healthy.

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What if your Unfaithful spouse doesn't want to do the wirk

Thanks Samuel for all your posts. They have given me support in the last 11 months since dday. Quick run down - spouse had one night stand last Oct - out of the blue. At first he seemed devastated - full of shame. Since then has gradually pulled further and further away from me. In Feb his Dad died quite suddenly and then things started to deteriorate quickly. He said he couldn't imagine being intimate with me again and said he loved me like family. No affection since dday. He's always been emotionally a closed book but he has point blank refused to talk. We've had about 4 joint counselling sessions where he didn't answer the questions. Said he felt numb and that he felt like a child. I have suggested he look at the AR website. He says he has but I don't believe him. Last week was our wedding anniversary and he refused to acknowledge it in any way so I said that I was done and now we are totally separated - in house for financial reasons. Although he has been sleeping downstairs since dday. My gut tells me that he is still so ashamed at what he did - which was totally against his moral compass - that he is vilifying me. He says there is no one else. What do I do when my gut tells me that he is having a life crisis but I can no longer put up with being treated this way. He won't commit to getting healthy. He has only seen his personal therapist a handful of times. We have a 2 and a 9 year old.

bobs....thank you for posting...

for some reason, i didn't get a notification on this and i'm sorry for the delay. well, here are two articles for a backdrop on shame: https://www.affairrecovery.com/newsletter/founder/infidelity-recovery-understanding-the-paralysis-of-shame...............https://www.affairrecovery.com/newsletter/founder/infidelity-pain-ways-to-stay-in-shame Shame was a huge component to me. now though, he seems to be feeling very sorry for himself and wrapping things around him rather than caring about you. i think it's huge and a great step that you are no longer tolerating the treatment you've received from him. if he won't commit to getting healthy and he wont commit to at least do recovery work, then i think you have to pull away and not allow the dysfunction to continue. i would NOT rule out he's talking to someone else or someone new or still involved with another woman or what have you. Lots of times, when there is extreme ambivalence, they are talking to someone else as that's the factor which then increases the ambivalence. he's proven to not be trusted so we know that despite what he says, he's not to be trusted blindly. it's very sad indeed for the kids and for you, but he's making his bed. i would read this article on how to ask him to cooperate and then utilize consequences: https://www.affairrecovery.com/dealing-infidelity-how-get-your-mate-cooperate-without-being-controlling if he still not cooperate and get help, i think you're safest, and your kids are safest by creating distance and not allowing his shame or his ambivalence to continue to pain you and hurt you. if the consequences do not wake him up and get him to turn a bit towards you, then there is someone else, or quite frankly he's just angry and full of bitterness at you and will not get help. the best thing you can do is pull back and get healthy yourself and refuse to chase him. if you chase him now, you'll be chasing him for everything in the future as well. if he perceives you NEED him then he maintains power and will use that against you until he gets healthy and gets the right kind of help. does that make sense?

Thank you.

Thank you so much for the reply, Samuel. What amazes me is he seems so calm. He is not hurting at all, it seems. He says he has tried - but to me, not seeing a personal therapist regularly and not doing anything the joint therapist suggests and not going to many of these appointments means that you haven't really tried. He's happier to be apart and start over - I just can't accept that this is in the best interest of our kids. At least I can say I tried. I've been hoping all this time that he would reach the point of brokenness and start to return to the man I married. I can't understand how 14 years of marriage can be thrown away so easily.

The struggle I have...

is that I want to get healthy and have been trying constantly to do so and not give up on me. But the lengthy disclosure process is incredibly debilitating. Like Bobs - I see that there is more she doesn't know about his affair. I too was blind and believed my husband about the limits of his affair(s), but then once the whole truth came out (not from him but from my own sleuthing) THAT was when he finally acted like a human again and more like the man I knew. So ironic that as I finally came to terms with his separation from me, he became wildly wanting to take it all back and at the same time put me into an even more traumatic emotional state because of all the details that were revealed (and of course the realization of how much and often he was willing to completely lie and fabricate stories and put all the blame on me and watch me accept responsibility for things that weren't my fault). So this trauma and desire to heal, paired with my husband and lover wanting to be with me now, I am having so much trouble feeling sane. what am I doing? to what extent am I still in manipulation? what is real any more?

its painful for sure

Mullen, i'm very sorry for the pain you are in. it's gut wrenching for sure and it seems like there is no end. how far along in the process are you? how many affairs did he have? there are challenges based upon those facts my friend. this article will help on disclosure for sure: https://www.affairrecovery.com/newsletter/founder/survive-an-affair-how-much-to-tell Until you know everything, you really can't heal and can't gain any ground emotionally in the healing process. it just hurts too much, there's too much uncertainty, and until it all comes out you can't gain any true momentum. have you been able to find any good help at all for you both? what help have you sought after as that makes a ton of difference as well? hope to talk more soon.

Well explained!

I'm just figuring this out....I've spent the last 14 months trying to save my marriage and realizing I've been torned to know if remaining married is even what I want. I guess in my mind I thought agreeing to get counseling meant I had to choose to remain married. I was getting individual counseling too and even though I was working through some of my own issues I still was way too focused on the marriage. Meanwhile my spouse was trying but I could tell he wasn't giving it his all. Once I made a decision to pull back not out of anger or revenge but because I really need to heal his response has been...he's trying to figure me out...he's nervous that I'm gonna leave...he becomes ambivlant and pulls away. I've decided to spend the next 6 months under the same roof to work on myself. I found out he is still in contact with his affair partner and has been for several months. However he doesn't know I found out this information. So now I feel empowered one because I no longer have to wonder and two my self trust has been strengthened. I can't make him confess. He can continue to live his life this way but I refuse. I am a full time student getting my Masters degree. I am currently looking to go back to work. I know that once that occurs I will be even more clear in my decision to separate or divorce. In the meantime, he will have every opportunity to get the help he needs, To be honest with God, himself and me. If he chooses not to, I walk away knowing that I gave it all I had until giving more was unhealthy. It will also help me to see him in a different light.

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-D, Texas