Help for the New People here!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-13-2003
Help for the New People here!
5
Mon, 05-19-2003 - 4:13pm
There are many here who are completely immersed in such pain. There are many in the middle and there are many who have moved past it. So, for those who have moved forward in any way even if it's a baby step forward how about stepping up and telling us how you did it?

1. What steps forward have you taken?

2. How did you get there?

3. What are you 100% willing to do to keep moving forward?

4. Why?

5. Where do you see yourself in 6 months? 1 year? 5 years?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 05-19-2003 - 4:48pm
Thanks for asking these questions SB - I always get so much when I'm forced to really think about things - in fact, it's one way I move forward!

1. What steps forward have you taken?

I am no longer sleeping with my XMM - it's been 5 months. I've been honest and told him that he hurt me, and I've turned down his requests to get back together. I started therapy, I started working on my marriage, I started trying to figure out WHAT went wrong inside of me and in my marriage that led to the affair, and how can I fix those things so it never happens again. I applied to go back to school (I start in the fall) to get a career I think I will love - this empowers me to have something of my own, beyond wife and mother, and makes me less needy of my H (or any man) for affirmation of my worth. And it allows me, eventually, the freedom to stay or go in my marriage based on the strength of our relationship, and not feel trapped by financial dependence.

2. How did you get there?

I'm not THERE yet! Therapy was a HUGE step for me, and also returning to religion and figuring out that, despite how I felt when the affair started, God never abondoned me - I was the one who abandoned God. And just figuring out that it hurt TOO MUCH to stay in the affair any longer, and I learning that I am so much stronger than I ever thought...

3. What are you 100% willing to do to keep moving forward?

I am willing to stay in therapy and dig to find out the root of the problems. The affair didn't cause my marital issues, and my marital issues didn't even cause the affair - it's about ME and what I want and need and how to get my needs met... and I can't find happiness FROM a man - I can only find it in myself and share it with a man - hopefully my husband... but if not, I also have to believe in my strength and know that I will be ok no matter what happens.

4. Why?

Why am I willing to work hard to move forward? Because the other option is not an option. It's just enduring pain and unhappiness, it's allowing myself to be MIS-used (someone else posted that last week) and disrespected. It's because I am NOT willing to settle and become someone that I am not. I want to be a good person, I want to be happy, and I want to be someone my children can look up to, and I want to be worthy of giving and receiving love - I couldn't be ANY of those things during the affair.

5. Where do you see yourself in 6 months? 1 year? 5 years?

In 6 months - it'll be almost a year since the end of the affair. I will be in school, I will be a faithful wife, I will be in therapy, I will be an attentive mother who doesn't cry all day every day. I will NOT have made any major life-changing decisions about my marriage. Still too soon. I will be hopefully much closer to being over XMM, or even totally over him. I will be working WITH my H on our marriage.

In one year. I will still be in school! I will be what I said above, but hopefully OVER the XMM... I want to be indifferent to him - not in love or hate or anything... I may still be in therapy, I will still be working on my marriage - I learned that you can NEVER ignore a marriage and not work on it - taking it for granted is NOT good or safe at all. I will be strong.

In FIVE years - there are two possibilities and I don't know which one will become reality. I will be done with school and working in the career I have dreamed of. I will either be married and HAPPY in my marriage and still working, every day, to make sure it stays happy OR - I will be divorced and maybe even in a new relationship, and if that's the case - it will be a a relationship filled with mutual love and respect, and the man will NOT be married to anyone except maybe me! No matter what, in 5 years, I will truly know - in my heart, not just in my head - that I don't need a man - not even my H - to make me happy. That happiness is inside of me and is something to be shared with your loved ones, but not something that has to be GOTTEN from them.

I can't wait to see what other's respond to these questions... and SB - where are YOUR answers???

Glinda

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-29-2003
Tue, 05-20-2003 - 12:45pm
I have taken giant leaps forward, and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, cliche' as that sounds, lol! Here's what I did so far:

1. What steps forward have you taken?

The first step forward for me was in admitting the A to my DH. Now, this was what was right for me, and in no way do I insinuate that this is what everyone should do. That being said, it was not even an option for me not to admit this to him. This, in effect, brought both me and XMM into a quick reality. (We had originally planned on marrying, and I was brought to the reality that I loved my H too much to go through with leaving him.) The next thing I did, the very next day, in fact, was end the EMA. That was a painful step, but regardless, still a step forward. Next, I apologized to XMM's W, when she called and confronted me. (By the way, I did this not for her, but for me.) I did not try to defend what I did, I just apologized for my part of the A. This brought its own form of healing later on, and I am very proud that I did this. My next step was proactively seeking and putting in place a system of support. Included in this is a counselor, my pastor, this message board, my doctor, (for anti-depressants and treatment of an eating disorder), doing a 20 MIN daily devotional in the morning of bible study and prayer, and some self-help books. Once I had that all in place, any steps backwards were quickly remedied and I had all the support I needed to heal from the pain stepping back inevitably causes. Another step forward is keeping the N/C rule. (I did vary from this and it's one of those steps backward that caused more pain.) Also, seeing this XOM's true colors is helping me immensely to get over him. (I hope you are all able to take those blinders off... not that XOM is always an evil person or anything, but that he is not the prince charming you saw him to be.) Marital counseling is a step forward, also. It has given us some much-needed tools to begin to identify issues, get eachtoher's perspective, and express things to one another we haven't been comfortable to express in awhile.

2. How did you get there?

There were several tools that were used to will me to move forward. Some of these include, for example: A Christian heart, prayer, the pain that I felt, and my support system. A Christian heart, one that belonged to Jesus, was the most helpful of all tools for me. Prayer was paramount in decision-making once reality set in. The pain I was feeling was uncomfortable, as I am generally a happy-go-lucky girl... I like to have fun and be silly, and waking up without joy was miserable! The pain pushed me to put my support system in place. My support system wills me have the courage to walk through the hurting, and begin to heal. (NOPE - not there yet!)

3. What are you 100% willing to do to keep moving forward?

Hmmm... Good question, SB!! Let's see... I am 100% willing to rely on God's strength instead of my own to get through this. I am 100% willing to fall back on my support system... I will not be afraid to ask for help! (That's a big one for me!)What else? Hmmm... I am also, last but never least, 100% willing to be supportive to anyone else dealing with their own A ending, in any way that I can. :)

4. Why?

I am willing to rely on God's strength because I know He is GOD. Enough said! :)

I am willing to fall back on my support system because I know I will need help from time to time to get through this. I am willing to be supportive to anyone else dealing with their own A ending because relating to someone else's experience, and being a supportive friend, makes me feel good again, and hopefully them, too. :)

5. Where do you see yourself in 6 months? 1 year? 5 years?

In 6 months, I'll bet I will be over the A, and on my way to bigger and better things in my marriage. My DH and I agreed we are going on a well-deserved romantic getaway of some kind when we both feel we have worked through this, as a reward. So, I picture us going away to Lake Tahoe for a few days, 1 year from now. In five years, I picture a happy, healthy marriage with my DH, and me enjoying my taste of freedom (my littlest and last little one will be in 2nd grade by then, oldest in 4th grade...) I will be almost done with school, already working part-time in the medical field I'm after, and healing my marriage and myself after an A will be an accomplishment I will look back and be proud of.








iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 05-20-2003 - 1:29pm
1. What steps forward have you taken?

I finally got off the fence and made a decision to stop living in pain. I let xom go -went to counseling with DH and realized that I need to let go of my abusive husband. He has since moved out and divorce has been filed. I am now working on ME and looking forward to my new life.

2. How did you get there?

same answer but I tell you what I dragged my feet for a long time it was really hard for me to accept that I need to CHANGE. THAT was so scary.

3. What are you 100% willing to do to keep moving forward?

100% willing to BE HONEST

4. Why?

I lived a lie for far too long and will have to choke on the guilt for that for a long time.

5. Where do you see yourself in 6 months? 1 year? 5 years?

6 months I hope my divorce will be over.

1 year content and settled as a single mom enjoying just everyday life with no dramas

5 years well I hope to fall in love again and my boys will be 13 (I have twins) I already have a great career that I love, a home I love, travel and hobbies only thing missing is someone to share it with but I want to be READY.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 05-21-2003 - 11:27am
Thank You, SB, for this. The answers really helped me. I just wish some "single OW's" would post their answers here. I am struggling and in so much pain.

Carol

Avatar for guardedticker
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Wed, 05-21-2003 - 11:45am
Okay here goes. I am single.

1. What steps forward have you taken? The very most important step I took was to take myself out of the A equasion, the MM's marriage and FOCUS ON ME. I got back to the gal I was before the A happened by reading the posts here, opening up myself to the idea that this relationship was not going to dictate my life, that obsessive behavior I allowed myself to participate in had to change with healthier things, things I like to do that bring me inner happiness. Looking within myself to see the things I wanted to change and then work towards that change helped me to move forward. And realizing that the MM wasn't going anywhere even if I did walk away. He will still be there in six months, a year and even five years down the road. It was about realizing that I can't truly lose a love if it is just fantasy anyway. That if real love in a relationship was meant to be, that it would happen in God's time and not my own. It was about accepting the fact that I can only control my own behavior and since it was out of control, I had to make choices differently for myself so I could genuinely feel better. Then I had to act on those choices and lead by example to make my life better, even if that meant letting go of someone I have loved most all my life to allow him to deal with his life on his own. It took a combination of understanding what I was doing wrong, taking action to make it right and have faith that I would be blessed as a result.

2. How did you get there? One day at a time.

3. What are you 100% willing to do to keep moving forward? Continue to feed myself with good things, things that are right that I don't have to keep in secret. And to be totally honest with everyone, especially myself.

4. Why? That is all that took my pain away.

5. Where do you see yourself in 6 months? 1 year? 5 years? Six months - working like a crazy woman to pay for a wedding. 1 year? Preparing to move and live on my own without my daughter for the first time in 23 years. 5 years? Living life to the fullest through my work as a business owner building my business to a point where I have more free time to give time to doing more of God's work...and still find time to play on the beach and feel the sand squish through my feet while the waves crash against my legs. Within five years, it would be wonderful to have a man in my life to share it all with, but it must be the right man, not one that I need to try to manipulate into wanting the same things.

Love and hugs to all.

GT