Shrink - "Divorce has to be an option."
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|Fri, 11-27-2009 - 4:15pm|
Met with my shrink this week.
A few things came up that I thought were interesting.
We talked about my spouses last "episode" in which she talked about us splitting. I told him that this time it really hurt and I'm growing comfortable with the idea of us splitting if necessary. He said that I should tell her this. He said that he gets all sorts of couples in that preface their therapy with, "We are never going to get a divorce. We are just trying to repair things." He says that usually one or the other spouse isn't really serious about the therapy and only gives it a half hearted effort. It isn't until one of the spouses is half way out the door that the spouse wakes up and finally pitches in. He said that for a marriage to really function at a high level. "Divorce has to be an option" always. And both partners have to know this. Often one partner will take the marriage for granted and stop contributing to it. As this goes on for years, the marriage corrodes.
When my spouse told me about the affair. I set my jaw and just did what I had to do, divorce was not an option to me. This was good and bad. I think I held our marriage together and let my spouse know possibly for the first time in a very long time that I was serious about her, but I also shielded my spouse from some hard issues. Now that I'm turning them back over to her. It's going a little rocky.
One of my spouses issues in this last "episode" was about me throwing the affair in her face. I didn't think I was doing it, but I did mention the affair and it really put her in a tail spin. I asked the shrink what the danger was of fully letting go of the affair. I felt that by holding on to the affair and bringing it up occasionally and discussing aspects of it was a protection from it and would be a reminder to both of us of where we went with things. He echoed some of the things I've heard on the list. He said, if you set your boundaries firmly and you make it clear that if she crosses these boundaries she has to leave. And you both are clear about them. Then if and when she crosses them, you move her out, and move on. Bringing up the affair now only brings her pain. In order to move past the affair now, I have to stop talking about it. I can't bring it up or use it in an argument. It's over, she's not doing it anymore, she understands a good portion of it. And she's a good person. It's time to push our marriage to the next level of trust.
I mentioned this message boards and he stopped me right there. We talked about these boards at length. We talked about how important they are, how you all helped me so very much. But he said that having days where I don't think about the affair is very important at this time. To do that, I have to leave the boards in the hands of the next generation to help the most recent new people with what they learned from my generation of betrayed spouses.
I thought about this very carefully for the past three days.
I began meeting with my shrink about a week after D Day. This last spring I stopped meeting with him weekly, but I chose to meet with him about every six to eight weeks for sort of a tune up. He told me on tuesday that he's moving to Michigan in December.
At the end of our session. I gave him a hug, wished him family well. And I left.
With that, I need to say "thank you" to you all. You saved my life. Best wishes and I love you. I'm going to go and work my marriage and my forgiveness. I'm letting go of the men, I'm letting go of the hurt, I'm going to be a better father and husband. And I'm going to go and try and be happy.
I hope you all do likewise.
D Day: August 2008