roller coaster ride - how do you do it?

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-2005
roller coaster ride - how do you do it?
Wed, 12-28-2005 - 2:16pm

I feel like I have been on this ride throughout our marriage & even as far back as dating, knowing what I know now... and I never questioned things. We really love each other & things have always just seemed meant to be. I think I was idealistic to a fault. H is now in SA & I'm going to S-Anon, we're in MC as well as IC. Still have no answer as to why he has been drawn to the porn, the internet, the chatting, the phone sex, emailing pictures - including MY picture - to others, strangers he met online... and I feel like enough is enough. Something keeps telling me though that this is the first time that he's actually admitting the problem & going to SA, but he's still so secretive about it, not wanting anyone to know his "problem" b/c he's so ashamed. Part of me wants to say, screw it - stand up & deal with the issue if you want to make this work. But I think it's the codependent part of me that wants to hope that this time things will be different & things can change. This time is the last time... even though it may not be the last time of him slipping up, I want to believe it's the last time for the denial & lies... but I don't think it is. We have no kids, we're young (26) even though we've been together for over 8 years - married for almost 4. I genuinely always thought I'd be married to him forever & we'd have kids... and now I just don't trust that. And I just can't trust any of my feelings - good or bad, hopeful or depressed. I feel like I have no sense of reality & now idea how to ride the waves & how to trust myself during this time. How did/do any of you get through this?

We had a positive holiday & were able to enjoy each others company & family... but now that the holiday is over, I'm back to reality & I feel like I'm being too easy on him. This last time I caught him (begining of this month), he was back sleeping next to me within 2 weeks... and I think it was probably more for my comfort that I let him come up than for the right reasons. I don't want him to be punished though - I know he wants to try & is remorseful... but still. It's too fresh & it's been going on too long. It's wierd... he shows the remorse & his feelings when he has been caught, or we're in counseling, or I get upset... but if I'm in a good mood, he continues to be & I just never see this effect him if it's not effecting me at the same time. Not saying I want to see him be a basketcase, but I guess I question what is valid & what is just a trigger to get me to take care of him (whether he knows he's doing it or not). Through all of this in the past two years, I haven't once seen him upset or having a hard time & share that with me first... does this make any sense to anyone?

I don't know how to articulate it, but I guess it is lack of initiative on his part that I'm seeing - in general but especially with this- except for the fact that he is going to counseling & SA, but even that was with the help of others... like SA, he was waiting for this person to call him back to give him info about one meeting even though he knew where others were & he'll only go to the meeting this person goes to. It was a week after the last time he got caught (about a month ago) and while he did call the counselor as soon as he knew he was caught, he didn't try to meet her - just kept the same schedule, got in to SA about two weeks later... I know I can't control him & it's not my decision.... but I was running to the S-Anon meeting after this last time for any hope of how to handle this. I feel like it says something the way he handles things... or am I just being too hard b/c I'm still so hurt & angry?

Bottom line - how do you ride the roller coaster & know when it's time to get off?

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-22-2004
Sun, 01-08-2006 - 12:28pm

well the emotional roller coaster will continue until you see consistancy in your husband's behavior of honesty and trustworthy. There is absolute no doubt in my mind that you will continue on this ride until your husband shows consistant trustful behavior.

You have had a recent dday and IMO you have awhile before you are POSITIVE that you "should" get off. I believe my best advice is not to do anything. Wait and see if your husband deserves that second chance. Let him prove to you that he deserves you. How? counseling is a must, but most importantly being accountable for himself to prove to you. As you watch his behaviors you don't find anything that contradicts his goals for your marriage.

I know you have more on your plate than just affairs. Quite honestly I know without a doubt we would not be together if it had not been for my husband for 3 mo out of my rebuilding I wanted to leave him, I tried often and tested him often. Without his persistance it does hurt my heart to think we would not be here together today. Best wishes and give it time. We hate that word the most TIME..... hugs, Tea

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-19-2005
Mon, 01-09-2006 - 10:24am

Thats the million dollar question!

You're not going to like my answer, but finding the breaking point is an individual thing. There will come a point if things aren't going well for you that you won't put up with it anymore. You don't have kids to drag through this rough road so that is a blessing. But what about YOU? Don't you deserve better? You said you made the decision to take him back bc you wanted the comfort of having him around. To me, that is a huge red flag.

If your H isn't showing much effort, it will never feel right to you. You'll have to trick yourself into believing this is what you deserve when you really deserve more.

The lack of initiative in him probably spans into many areas of your relationship. Its not something you can brush off. Good intentions are nice and all, but what pulls people through change is an inner drive. Your H has to be willing to change his life not bc someone is pushing him in that direction but bc he truly wants a healthier life and is willing to put the work in to get there.

I think you're on the right path to trusting yourself. Sometimes we learn to listen to ourselves more after we failed ourselves. I know I look back at my H's fencesitting and wish I had been able to protect myself from that hurt. Now, I feel like I can trust myself bc I won't put up with that ever again. KWIM?