Right at the beginning of the end...

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-16-2014
Right at the beginning of the end...
6
Thu, 01-16-2014 - 10:02am

Hi everyone,

Ive been involved in an affair for about 6 months now, trying desperately to work my way out at this point, as I've gotten too emotionally attached to the AP. He's married, I'm married, our spouses know each other, though not well. We've known each other for years, and our lives have many interconnections. This is a first for both of us, and we've both been with our significant others a long time. It started as an emotional affair; both of us were going through some real problems at home, and in each other found someone to laugh with, share our problems and fears with, connect to. It's crazy what a high that is. Texting each other all day and into the evenings, never hiding it from our spouses, in some ways felt that we were validating why we were doing because it wasn't hidden. I'd always been attracted to him on a physical level, and now I had him telling me that he'd find any reason to spend more time with me, making me feel desired, needed, wanted. His wife could sense things were not what they should be, and lost it on him for it (rightfully so!). While he blatantly denied to her anything was going on, we shifted to less obvious communication- emails, finding non-suspicious time to be alone, etc.

Having to push this underground seemed to be the tipping point to it getting physical. Now we knew what we were doing was wrong, and we proceeded to make it really wrong. That has been going on for months, with a few attempts on both our parts to stop it along the way.  We were excrutiatingly careful, we've never gotten caught though I think both spouses had suspicions. We are in a situation where we have legitimate reasons to be alone together, and kept any of this activity to those times. The few moments we could share together seemed to make the rest of the day and it's guilt, loneliness, and lying to our spouses worth it. The turning point for me came when I realized just how emotionally involved I had gotten with some one who could never make me a priority. We would always have to be looking at the clock, over our shoulders. I was jealous of his family-they had his real time and energy. He has so many complications in his life that it was never a possibility for this to work for us, and while my head knew that going into this, my heart wasn't convinced.

About a month ago I told him all this, and that I'd really have to back out of contact to get my head cleared. He was crushed, we see each other 4-5 times a week in our normal lives, and he wanted me to try and make it work but not lose contact, kept saying we would figure it out. I gave in... And we backslid twice in one month. Hard. The most recent just being this past Monday. I saw him like normal on Tuesday, but could not even make eye contact without being on the point of tears. He cut most of our communication after the first back slide, which just made it all worse... Partial contact, pretending to be normal? I can't do that, because it's not normal. And part of me is so mad and so upset that he was so adamant about keeping communication , figuring it out together, only to find that his means of doing so was to just pretend nothing ever happened, and stop talking except when needed. I know how he copes, he's got that soldier mentality of putting on the game face and powering through it... And I know he's hurting too. But I can't handle his coping mechanism, I can't see hi every day acting normal.  Monday he was telling me it would get easier, to stick with it. How on earth is it easy to see someome every day who is trying to fall out of love??? I don't see that getting easier!!!

so I'm taking steps to change my routines and cut the ties that need to be cut. Not there yet, but working on it. I will still have to contact him at least once or twice more for professional reasons (fortunately we don't work together, but I've been doing some contract work for him), but that should get wrapped up quickly. I've got two friends in reali life who know what's going on and let me vent, and support me. I've got a husband at home who knows things got off track (not how badly, he doesn't know and I don't plan to tell him), and wants to work It out. But I'm still heartbroken, missing the AP like crazy. Mixed with a nice dose of guilt, some anger, and self loathing. Like I said, beginning of the end, but determined to really end it and get past all this hurt. Sigh... And if you read all that, you deserve an award.. 

Avatar for wClarity
Community Leader
Registered: 11-04-2012
Thu, 01-16-2014 - 12:41pm

Hi FixingHelen

I love your name because it acts as an affirmations as you take steps to fix Helen :)

It's good that you are acknowledging that moving on will be quite difficult, if at all, as long as you are in each others presence.   We normally suggest going no contact, but in cases such as your, limited contact would have had to do.  But if you can make the necessary changes so that you don't have to see each at all, all the better.

And if you can also block all avenues of contact so no one can get through during a weak moment, even better. There will be weak moments so blocking all avenues is for your own protection.

You are determined to get out, and that will help big time. You know that neither of you really could make each other a priority.  You both already have priorities you are committed to.  And we women tend to become more emotional invested so ending seems to be more difficult...not that men don't become emotional invested as well.   Waivering back and forth, 'forced" NC by the affair partner make it more difficult, but when one has made up their own mind that enough is enough and that remaining in the affair is just not right, and that a lot of other people stand to get hurt by of all this, they have a somewhat easier go of it.

Once he's out of your picture, with a some time and distance away under your belt, the intensity of withdrawals with ease up. If you can get into counseling, that will be helpful to.  Having an affair is all about us and our limitations and so getting to the bottom on our issues is necessary.

Please read through other threads here...some of your questions may be answered in another posts, feel free to participate and post in to support others...we know how reaching out to others is helpful to ourselves as well, read through our Healing Library and check out the Baggage Reclaim Site.  

I'm in and out throughout the day, and there are a few who still come by here and lend support...so feel free to continue to post in for support and to talk things out.

((hugs))

Clarity



Community Leader,

Ending an Affair Support Board

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Thu, 01-16-2014 - 2:33pm

Award me!  Award me! :)

I just wanted to say that you seem to be a person who understands herself, and you can articulate well to yourself and to others what you are feeling and why.  I believe that will help you as you work your way through this.  You might find it helpful to talk to a therapist about how you found yourself in this place.  Usually people who are reflective and articulate find therapists helpful in moving forward and making sure they don't make the same mistake twice.  You might also find that a therapist is a more productive outlet than friends.

Guilt is a worthwhile emotion, but self-loathing isn't.  You are not the sum total of the thing you have done.  Please remember that. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-16-2014
Thu, 01-16-2014 - 3:21pm

Thank you both for the kind words... I'm definitely an analytical person and can turn that on myself... And while I'm hurting like crazy, that side of my brain longs for logic, and clarity. Therapy is definitely an option, just need to figure out how to get started. One of the hardest things with all of this is that one of my biggest channels for stress release/sanity/and feeling better is the main activity that ties me to the AP. long before things turned into an affair, he was a support system, and played a huge role in encouraging me to be my best for me, to do things I didn't think I could. So many positive affirmations, which is part of why it was so easy to fall into this with him. But I am doing everything I can to get a fresh start and find a way to keep this huge part of my life without him in it. The memories will always be there, but I need the guidance and support of someone I can trust in these ventures, and that is definitely what is missing now. Well, that and I don't trust myself to not make a fool out of myself if I meet with him again!!! Been calling and visiting new places and groups to participate in so I can keep what is truly a positive activity in my life, but separate this all out of it. Very much a situation of two good people that just crossed a big line and did something really wrong. And wow does it suck trying to clean it all up.

Avatar for wClarity
Community Leader
Registered: 11-04-2012
Thu, 01-16-2014 - 4:13pm

Yes, picking up the mess is going to be hard work. I still don't understand why we, as adults, can make such a mess and not take into account who's going to clean it up...because we know it's going to have to be us...lol  I guess we just don't allow our minds to take it that far...because it seems like such fun at the time.  We end up paying big time.  And if we don't get our act together, others end paying for it as well.

It's hard too when we can no longer go to our go-to person for comfort when they've become our source of discomfort.  *sigh* the consequences of crossing the line.  I hear more angst about the loss of the friendship when the lined was crossed because now the affair is over and the friend'ship' has sailed too.

I'm glad you are open to therapy.  For most, it is the only way to start sorting through our crap to insure we stay on the straight and narrow.

Keep doing what you need to do...one foot in front of the other, and with each step you are moving forward and away.  Keep posting and reading as much as you can and want.

((hugs))

Clarity


Community Leader,

Ending an Affair Support Board

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-08-2012
Thu, 01-16-2014 - 6:13pm

Hello. Although I'm at the beginning stages myself, it sounds like you have a pretty good handle on thing. I'm glad you are able to lose yourself in something yoi enjoy. That should help. I have become so depressed I haven't been able to go back to what I enjoy( especially since it was something xAP and I share a love for.  Give yourself credit for being able to forge forward. I did the work the first time around and remember it getting easier but I don't think I ever gave up hope or the need for some explanation. I got a tearful apology months some time after NC and got myself back in a mess but worse. We were able to make things work for a long time but in the process I really neglected my M. 2yrs later he was just texting me how I'm a priority in his life and he loves me foreveasked accused him of being dishonest because I had caught him on something minor. He completely flipped the switch and just ran again.  So much for being a priority and loving me. NC the second time is even harder. I guess I'm trying to prevent you from going back. Everything I read says the first 3 weeks is the worst of the withdrawal so I'm waiting that out but I'm really afraid my need to hear his voice will not go away. Good luck and keep posting. I think a therapist can hold you accountable too which is what I'm scared of but I am pursuing it as well.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-16-2014
Fri, 01-17-2014 - 4:54am
Thank you for sharing your experience, Time. Yeah, it's been PT contact for about 3 weeks, but NC for only 2 days. And I'm a little freaked out that I need to lift that temporarily to get that work stuff to him, but plan to email it then block him right after. I woke up this morning and for maybe 20 seconds didn't have it on my mind... Then it all came crashing back and I just felt sick. :-( Knowing how lost I got in this, how badly I hurt my M, how much my work was suffering (I changed jobs in the middle of all this, and my job requires crazy focus and attn to detail... That wasn't happening!!!) I can't even imagine what would happen if I went back to the A. But I know myself, and if I found him wanting me back, god that would be hard to resist. And the depression is there... Part of what has kept me going in these activities is trying to be as normal as I can in front of my H, and my friends that know about it all encouraging me. And I know what kind of a community this stuff is, and know that is what I need right now. For me, the depression is more at work where I don't really have a social safety net (I've gone... But I don't think I've done anything there for two days). And genuine exhaustion. Depleting exhaustion. And on that note, time to get up and do it all again today... You guys are right, one foot in front of the other...