Bedtime Again

Well it’s past bedtime but the thought remains. I’m hoping for sleep tonight. It’s actually odd, during the day this is all in the background, it is almost non-existent. Work and social media keep my mind occupied. It’s only, well mostly, when the lights are out and sleep seems imminent that the thoughts start.

Before anyone suggests that her behavior might be causing this, and that was my first thought, it’s not. We made some rules when we decided to fix things. Those rules became habits for both of us. I won’t go in to detail tonight but I can say that she doesn’t even run errands with the kids with her. This isn’t that sort of feeling, it’s not that sort of thought process. This is very much only what I talked about last night, that feeling that I wish she’d put in the same effort now that she did with him then.

I’ve made some plans to give us more time alone and I’m hoping that will help. I’m actually more afraid of settling in to complacency than I am of her cheating again. It’ll be a while before the baby isn’t sleeping in bed with us so hopefully some regular time alone together will have results.

That’s  a good revelation, that I’m more worried about complacency than I am about her cheating. That’s as good a note as any to end this one and hope sleep is forthcoming.

Another Sleepless Night

Insomnia is the prescription tonight. Whether caused by the thoughts or vice versa doesn’t matter. Tomorrow will be a day of energy drinks to stay awake and even knowing this I’m still unable to quiet things in my head. We’ve talked recently about our relationship but I avoided the topic of the past. It was productive conversation and nothing is really wrong, per se, we have an 18 month old along with the rest of the kids, talking about finding time for each other is a perfectly normal conversation. For anyone else. For me it involves voices in the back of my head reminding me of the lengths she went to to see him and how if she put in half that effort we wouldn’t be having the conversation. Not that we didn’t have the same sorts of conversations before when we got too occupied, of course we did, they just didn’t have the added chorus of my thoughts.

For fuck’s sake we’re almost three years in to this. I guess it could be that it all happened this month and that’s why it’s bugging me right now. I really don’t know but that seems plausible. Like I said in my last post things are actually better than they ever were before. I know, rationally that because we have the baby in bed with us and she’s still under two that this how things are. We’ve done quite a bit of this before.

Things just seem to be making the memories crop up more than I’m used to. Trust me, it’s not her behavior, she’s been amazing at everything I asked whereas I think most people would have slipped in to complacency by now she has kept the habits and there’s literally no reason for me to think anything is going on. It’s all the past beating me up right now. I know I need to talk to her about it but it almost seems unfair, she’s done nothing more and I’m the one not letting go. I’d give just about anything to let go right now.

Been a While

God, it’s been a long time and I honestly hoped to never be writing here again. Nothing new has happened, at least not in the sense that it was the one set of incidents with the one guy, but things still linger.

There are times when driving the same routes we used to take to go see him is unavoidable and that tends to trigger bad thoughts.

There are times when we have time alone, admittedly not much, and she doesn’t give me the same passion she gave him. What I mean by this is that we have a child in bed with us a lot of the time so we talk and play on our phones. But when we’re alone she down make it a priority to put the phone down and pay attention to me. It may be hard to break that habit but it’s something that matters to me.

I don’t have a lot of thoughts tonight save that I’m sad that I need to come back here and start posting again. It is what it is. We’re together and that isn’t changing but the spectre of her cheating still looms and makes me absolutely miserable some nights. Not as often or as miserable but this far in I’d hoped we’d father from it. We’re really not. We’re moving and always getting farther away but not nearly with the speed I’d hoped.

One Year, To The Day

Yesterday marked one year to the day that W stepped out on me. Four days shy of exactly six months from D-Day. I knew this time of year was going to bring up some hard emotions. I attach a lot of importance to dates and as such expected that the next month or so would be slightly harder than it has been. What I didn’t expect was for it to hit me like a ton of bricks and I wasn’t prepared for the level or depression and feeling out of control. Of course there’s more going on than just the A but it all comes back to it in one way or another. I wanted to write yesterday but I couldn’t figure out how to order everything. hell I’m not sure I’ve got it right even now but I need to get this out.

Holidays have always been a mixed bag for me. I have issues with a sibling so the big ones, Thanksgiving and Christmas, are always hard for me since I rarely get to see my side of the family for either of them and when I do it always feels like they are doing it out of pity for me. So From shortly after Halloween until New Year’s I struggle not to be depressed. Some years back I threw everything in to New Year’s and the Fourth of July. I could have fun, blow things up, and not think about what are, for most people, the important holidays.

New Year’s Day marked the end of the season during which I felt depressed and I could shake it off and start anew. I could take the kids to fireworks stand and spend too much money, stay up late, and ring in a fresh start with my immediate family. This was the lesser of the two holidays for me since it was so close to the season during which I fight depression. It was certainly an exclamation point for me though. Something I really enjoyed and to which I looked forward. Now it’s three days after December Twenty-Eight, D-Day, and I didn’t want to do anything last year but I still set up for the kids and smiled for them. I doubt it’ll ever be that important again. If you’ve read W’s side of this you also know that it’s the first time VR ever made a move on her so there’s that as well. If it weren’t for the kids I’d sleep through it from now on.

The Fourth of July has long been my favorite holiday. I love what we are celebrating, I love the fireworks, I love the gathering of friends and family. I put everything in to it. I spend way too much money on things to blow up, food to eat, and try to get everyone involved. For years we’ve done this at my best friend’s house with few exceptions. Last year was one of the exceptions. Smack in the middle of W’s affair with another of my best friends we went to his house. My night ended with W yelling at me in front of people and me being utterly confused as to what was going on. This year I wanted to reclaim it. I didn’t want to let the A have that day. What I am getting is most of my kids being gone, a depression I don’t see ending until after mid-July (I am figuring the length of the affair), and a feeling that I can’t control much of anything at the moment.

In essence W managed to take the two holidays I had managed to make my own, to have some celebration where I didn’t have to think about how shitty my family is to me, and ruin them for me. Make no mistake they are ruined for this year at least. I don’t think there’s any saving them. What I get to do is put on my happy face for the kids, who know nothing about the A, buy fireworks, carry on the tradition, and pretend like there’s nothing wrong. Sounds exciting doesn’t it?

I didn’t want the kids gone, two of them I don’t think I could have stopped as that situation involves their summer visitation with their egg donor but the other two I made clear I didn’t want them to leave. Guess where they’ll be? I’ll give you three guesses and the first two don’t count. I could cancel their plans. I am their father. But that would upset them. Well one of them, the other would roll with it and have a grand time at our traditional celebration. That’s really the key here. I needed this 4th, out of all of them, to match our tradition as closely as possible and it’s not going to happen. I made this clear before plans were ever made. I made it known I didn’t want them to go. I gave up because it seemed like there were other battles to fight at that moment, and there were, and now W tells me she didn’t mean to make me feel like I couldn’t say “no”. The problem is that is exactly how I felt. I felt like I couldn’t say “no” without upsetting everyone aside from myself. I felt selfish wanting my tradition. Now I can’t have it. I get to deal with a situation I didn’t have any say in creating by not having any say in how I deal with it.

Fuck. My. Life.

It’s Not That Simple

I’ve been wanting to write since Friday but haven’t been able to piece together all of my thoughts. It hit me as I was walking back to the office from having a smoke, thinking about a show I am excited about on June 17, then I realized that’s exactly one week before the first time she slept with him, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. She treated VR better than she treated me in just about every respect. That realization fucking hurt.

A little background may be necessary so for what it’s worth W has some degree of social anxiety disorder. She can’t call her counterpart in other couples to make plans for the weekend. She can barely call the doctor to make appointments for our kids. She can’t handle any conflict on the phone like putting off a bill because payday fell weird. This is something we have dealt with our whole relationship and an area where I wanted to make improvement. You know, like taking the time to step outside and make some of the calls she couldn’t. I realized, while waiting for the elevator, that she called him to make plans, she called him to set up what she thought. at the time, would be the end of her marriage if caught. She set up plans with VR and Mrs. VR with ease so that she could see him. All the while getting upset if I asked her to make a call because I was busy at work.

So I started up a conversation on our messenger of choice and we started talking about what I was feeling. She’s been really good about that and has never blown me off or minimized anything so that’s a plus. I eventually went downstairs to smoke again and called her on the phone. While on the phone I realized she had implied she was out of control when in reality she was more in control than I have ever seen her. She managed a huge series of lies, made plans, calculatingly used my own fears against me, and even used the kids as an excuse multiple times in order to go see him. There wasn’t a lack of control at all. There was cold calculation. If she had put half of that effort in to making our relationship better this would have never happened.

So at this point I feel like something is missing. Why can’t she put that same effort in to our daily lives. Why do I have to worry about asking her to make a phone call or a quick grocery run? Why do I have to set up plans with the few friends of the marriage? Why can’t she put that same effort in to anything else? Hell how could she do any of this without her anxiety crippling her? Why am I not important enough for her anxiety to be overcome?

We were in a good place for a couple of months. I guess this is progress as well. I just want this all to be over and done with. I’m even more impatient than I was before because this came out of nowhere and I don’t like the implications that go along with it. Of course I’m not going anywhere but I can’t figure this out on my own and I feel like she doesn’t have any answers. Maybe it is time to get a counselor involved.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPnPTVEh-Qk

I’ve started so many posts

But nothing seems important enough to write about. We’re moving forward and things are going really well. I’ve learned to avoid my triggers until I’m ready to deal with them. W has been and is being as helpful as anyone could possibly be in her situation. My day to day is not overwhelmed, not even close, and most days the A doesn’t even come up.

We are starting on a new normal and it’s a normal on which we both agree. We’ve had some rather big news but it’s personal and possibly contains identifying information so we aren’t sharing it here.

I want so badly to blog the actual recovery but the epiphanies seem to be done. The revelations are over. It’s the daily grind at this point and there’s nothing that gets you through that except both partners agreeing to do the work and putting in the time along with the effort. Keeping the honesty even after things start to go back to normal. Never slipping back in to taking each other for granted. When the A stops coloring your every thought that’s when the real work begins. The real work isn’t getting over the initial shock, it’s what you do afterwards. And that’s what we’re doing now. It’s almost impossible to chronicle that if you want things to go back to normal.

I guess I’ll post here if more comes up and I’m still reading the blogs I follow but for now my focus is on what we need to do to strengthen us. I’m not sure how or if to chronicle this or if I should. I do want to thank everyone who has commented here and helped us get this far. I hope I can keep posting and maybe help someone else but this blog will take a backseat for the moment. I have a feeling I’ll post more but I’m not going to make it a priority at this point.

…and time passed

Things seem to be on an even keel right now. I’m not consumed by the affair any longer, I am learning to recognize my triggers, I pick my battles carefully, the boundary agreement is safely in place, and we are still talking about things on a daily basis. It’s strange really, to have this be part of our life but not have it be the all-consuming beast that it was for almost three months. When this all started I knew I would have to get over it eventually but I had no idea how that could happen.

Getting over the affair started out as a minute by minute fight and has slowly progressed from there, in increments, to where it is now. It’s not much of a fight for me anymore and when it is winning that fight is fairly easy. I am still battling depression and taking pills to help me sleep but that’s to be expected. I haven’t taken an anxiety pill in over two weeks and I think that’s progress. To be honest I could have used the sleep aid before D-Day so blaming that on W, or letting her take the blame, is really disingenuous.

The most important thing to me, right now, is W. She’s in a dark place, unable to start moving past what she has done. It kills me to see her hate herself like she does right now, to question why I would stay, much less why I would even like her. So that’s my focus for the foreseeable future. I need to be here for her, to help her see herself how I see her and not through the grimy lens of self loathing.

I am quite fine enough to stop worrying about myself all the time. There are still some little things but those can be dealt with as they come up, and they are truly little things. Well there’s one larger thing but I think dealing with that will be as much for her as it is for me. The key here, in my opinion, is that we deal with all of this together, as a single entity and not as adversarial parties.

W’s actions made us adversaries but through a lot of hard work and a lot of communication we aren’t that any more. We are a couple, married, together, striving for the same goals. Whether our enemies are internal, self loathing, unhealthy desires, unclear communication, etc, or external, people who don’t support the marriage, issues with extended family, etc, as long as we get to the root and face them together, hand in hand, there’s nothing we can’t do. Neither of us is in this alone nor will we ever be again and together we’ll make through.

It’s harder to write when things aren’t moving very quickly but aren’t stagnant. Progress towards getting past this and moving in to a new normal is slow, painfully so at times but it’s there. Each day we make progress but it’s hard to find a milestone about which to write. So my entries have been few and far between as of late but I really want to document our progress in case I ever start feeling defeated and need something on which I can reflect or because of the remote possibility that my scattered thoughts might help someone going through the same thing. Not much of a closing paragraph really but that’s all I got at the moment…