After an affair, your life doesn't belong to you anymore. For over a year, I couldn't control my own thoughts.
The turmoil in my head was viciously repetitive but savagely random. With this blog, I began to exorcise the demons holding my head hostage.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Trigger Talk

Triggers are evil.  The truly awful thing about triggers...triggers can be anything!  An event, an inanimate object, a certain day of the year or just a time of day!  A person, a color, a location, a freaking smell!  A song, a commercial, a scene in a movie, a stinking billboard that never seems to come down and it's right in plain view on your way to work!  The list is endless and infuriating!

Whatever "IT" is, if it serves to raise your blood pressure, makes you pause, swallow hard, suck in a breath and hold it while gritting your probably got yourself a trigger.  Any damn thing that precipitates a reaction, visceral or otherwise, is probably a trigger and they haunt me.

If you're anything like me, you've created lots of little tricks to avoid the triggers and you've worked very hard to beat the suckers down with a big stick.  I call my early efforts in that regard DTs.  It stands for detoxing and detriggering.  I thought immersing myself in triggery places would desensitize me to the pain caused by them.  (I just LOL'd at myself) You know, like if you're scared of heights, you might take a hot air balloon ride?  That doesn't translate so well into dealing with adultery aftermath.  But, I thought facing my fears would make me tough.  (Still LOLing!)
I went to Richard's office right after DDay.  Had him do me right where he did Jaymie for the first time.  (I'd better laugh at myself or I'm gonna need some Pepto real quick) I even drove my ass to the Marriott where Richard stayed with Jaymie on the night of DDay.  Got out of the car, walked to where Jaymie's email to him said they smoked a cigarette before they went upstairs to screw (if you wanna read that letter, you should grab the aforementioned Pepto first, but here's the post...Rough Night...For Me Anyway. ) and stood there smoking my own cancer stick while imagining Richard with Jaymie, naked in one of the rooms above.  Facing my fears or emotional cutting?  So not helpful!!

My little weekend away to Barona was an exercise in DT-ing and fear-facing.  I agreed to let my mom get me a free room at Richard's afternoon cheating love nest.  This email is how Jaymie described one of the afternoons Richard picked her up for a trip to Barona.  Almost sounds innocent.

Jaymie Simpson

 to Richard
show details Oct 7, 2010

I'm still thinking about you..
I'm resting in my rocking chair just letting my mind relax. And thougts of you come in slow waves. Like the effects of wind across a lake. Primarily I'm thinking about being with you yesterday. Holding hands in public was a little too much fun. The big lemon.. Getting swept away from lemon grove and tucked safely into your car. And just hanging out with you was great. I'm glad you liked my books so much. Incredible facts about earth :) ;putting my bag together was fun enough, but unpacking it with you was fantastic. You appreciate everything I want to show you and teach you. I know how you add all the new bits into your total picture of me. Not neglecting anything. Falling deeper in love with each new detail. That's special.. No one else is like you. I doubt you understand, because doing that comes naturally to you. But it is a rare quality and I love you for it.
Your Jaym

BTW...another nasty ass trigger..that Big Effing LEMON!  I have to drive past that damn thing at least once a month going to a warehouse in Lemon Grove where I pick up merchandise for my store.  Gotta go there tomorrow, as a matter of fact. When I see the lemon, in my mind's eye, I see Richard scooping Jaymie up in his arms and swinging her around in slow motion with the giant lemon in the background.

Fuck that Lemon!!  I'm here to tell you...I refuse to be ruled by Triggers!!

That weekend, I spent a lot of time by the lake at Barona where Richard and Jaymie walked, holding hands in public.  I slept in a room that could have been the exact one they used to commit their sins against me.  Probably wasn't the exact one, but the rooms all look the same so it wasn't tough to imagine the two of them rolling around naked on the ugly bedspread.
I was weaker then.  The triggers had control.

Today, my DT-ing skills have been honed and I am proud to say, even though I experience triggers daily, (The worst is when we first wake up.  When Richard reaches for me, I think of him reaching for Jaymie.  It happens nearly everyday and I haven't been able to stop it.  It's an subconscious thought that happens when I'm barely awake) I have developed mental muscles to fight them off.
I have to thank the lovely Dr. K for this defensive maneuver.  When I see a commercial for Victoria's Secret, Barona Casino or Chili's, when I drive by the Big Lemon or the Marriott Springhill Suites, when Richard strokes my stomach and I think of the email Jaymie wrote to him about touching her on the hips, my brain leaps into action, switching to self-preservation mode. Dr. K gave me the weapon.
My Mantra:
"I do NOT need to think about this now! It will NOT help me to think about this now! I will NOT think about this now!"
This pathetically lame, simple solution actually helps!  I've gotten really good at it! I wield those words like a sword.

I've also learned that just by using sheer will, I can CHOOSE to ignore the triggers.  I figured that out all by myself when dealing with the trigger that is my Mecca....Nordstrom.  Richard took Jaymie on a little shopping spree there, the same day he bought her the lovely undies at Victoria's Secret (I will NEVER shop there again!) he took her to MY Temple of Tranquility and bought her additional goodies (bribes) at the cosmetic counter.  Well, there was no way I was gonna let her take Nordstrom away from me!  Not a chance!  So, I CHOSE to ignore that trigger!  Just CHOSE it!  That showed me that when what you're going to lose is worse than the can work up the strength to let it go.  Very empowering.
As helpful as the mantra was to calming the war waging in my mind and as strong as I felt using my own determination to defeat the trauma of triggers, I gotta say time is the best defense of all.
The months roll by, and I find I barely notice the scantily clad models on the Victoria's Secret commercials and very little attention is paid to the Chili's baby back ribs jingle when it interrupts a favorite TV show.  I drive right by that Marriott everyday to and from work, and on some days I don't even notice it at all.  I'm winning the battle of the Triggers.  Freedom!

I spent that entire weekend at Barona wallowing in Triggers, imagining the worst and not healing in the least.  When I left there on Sunday, I still had no answers. I was no better off than when I had checked in on Friday.  I had no idea how our marriage could survive this much turmoil and so many lies.
In fact, I had used most of the weekend planning how I could get my hands on the rest of the emails.
My tortured, twisted, trigger filled mind had come up with some very creative ideas.


Erica said...

Yes, fuck that lemon. When you drive by it today throw a lime at it!

Anonymous said...

Aren't triggers awful? I think we need to applaud ourselves when we vanquish/control them. Thanks for posting this; it helps to read how other betrayed spouses cope. I hang out a lot on Surviving Infidelity and I picked up two tricks. When I feel a trigger taking over I repeat to myself "I know and it has hurt me very much but I have felt it and now I am letting it pass". I have found that acknowledging it just lets that trigger slip into the background. The other is not pleasant. I just imagine the affair partner as a pile of gross dog poo. Fit only to be bagged up and thrown in the garbage or left by the curb to decay.

Erica said...

Dog poo! I love it (well, not dog poo, but the imagine of the affair partner as dog poo). I think the thing that's hard for me is trying NOT to think of the affair partner. I sometimes look at pictures of her & can't believe my H was intimate with her. I know, I know, it's not about her, not that she was so great (in my situation, my H says he didn't even find her attractive, and I believe that - she's really not!). So, I'm trying NOT to think about her and the 'let it pass' stuff just doesn't stop my mind's mega-screen drive-in theatre of their sex acts. Had this just last night, in fact. Had a great marital counseling session but at night my H initiated and the movie screen started right in. Ugh.

Anonymous said...

What do you do when the triggers are in your own house?my husband screwed the OW on a rug in our living room. I would get rid of the rug except it is a part of my family's history ( smuggled on a train travelling across Europe when the Russians were coming)

Anonymous said...

I hate my triggers. They are music. My h and I fell in love over music. We used to make cassettes and then CD's for one another. We would buy each other CD's and love just spending an afternoon in a used CD store. Then I bought him an iPod. He would make playlists for us. We would take road trips and just sing in the car together, loving life. He would post songs on my Facebook page about love and life. What did he do with the ow? He sent her music. They would send each other music on Spotify. She was going through tough times and he created playlists of comfort and love for her. she would send him songs about how he was with the wrong woman and they belong together. When he finally ended it she sent him songs about relationships ending. I found it all. Songs sent with captions like, I'll always be here for you. I can't listen to music anymore. I hear certain songs and I go into panic mode, or just bawl. I hate it. And part of that hates him for taking that from me, and from us.

shawn thewife said...

(((Erica))) I so get the mind movies! I call them tentacles or brain worms. The ones about the sex are the worst. I still have them, too. That is one reason why I tell newbies to DDay, be careful about what you THINK you NEED to know. Once you know it, you can't UN-know it and then the mind movies begin.
Once I fianally got to the place of "I will not let that bitch-whore take anything else from me!" I began to learn to fight off the mind movies. I refuse to let her have any more of my life...and sex is a very important part of my life! I want it back, damn it!
I know you're a fighter. You'll win the battle of the brain worms. We all will.
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

shawn thewife said...

Anonymous!!! Jaymie as Dog Poo! Not pleasant, but hilarious!! LOL!
I tried to find a place on Surviving infidelity but it was too big and confusing for my little brain to manage. That's why I love the Healing Heart. But, it doesn't matter where we find our support, our motivation or a few well timed words of long as we have a go to place and we never have to fight back the beast of betrayal alone.
Thanks for the laugh! Always appreciated!
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

shawn thewife said...

Anna: That is a nasty trigger. I don't have any great answers, but I promise with time, it'll get easier. Maybe you can try what I did with Nordstrom...gird your loins and take back what is important to you!
That rug is a priceless heirloom. OW will NOT ruin your ties to such an important thing in your life.
I know Nordstrom isn't the same thing as your beautiful rug, but I'll bet you can use the same indignant attitude that I mustered up to take back your happy feelings for it. It takes practice and lots of time.
Don't give her any more of your life!! Take it back!
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

shawn thewife said...

Anonymous: Music was a toughie for me, too! Richard and Jaymie shared all kinds of music. They burned CDs for each other. I smashed the ones he had. Smashed them all to hell and back!
I think it's the same idea as Nordstrom or the rug or SEX...If it was important to you before the A, TAKE IT BACK! Don't let OW have anymore of your life.
That defiance may not work for everyone, but it sure helped me. It took a long time, but once I finally let Jaymie go, I tried hard to be damn sure she wouldn't influence my happiness anymore. I own my own happiness.
I hate that Richard took so much from our lives, but I can't make the most of what we still have if I dwell on what we lost. If you love it, if you need it, if you want it...take it back.
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

Anonymous said...

Triggers are the hardest part. It's like I think I am doing ok, and then wham! back to reality. Thing is, the strong trigger reaction always makes me question how well I am really doing. Sometimes I just swallow it, other times I talk to my husband about it. Haven't decided which one works better. Over time, I have noticed that some have faded, but sadly there are always new ones to take its place that I hadn't quite thought of before. For example, after he ended things with her, the B sent me a picture of her foot with the exact same tattoo as my husbands in the exact same spot as his. Sad thing is I was there when he got that tattoo, and it had special meaning between us. I would cut her foot off if it was legal haha. I still bristle when anyone so much as comments on it. And I still look up her name on Google just find out where she is (2 hours away thanks god)even though I always feel worse after. Sometimes it makes me wonder if I am doing as well as I think. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Anonymous said...

As long as you are with the cheater triggers will always happen because HE IS THE BIGGEST TRIGGER.

Once i left him, the very same triggers which used to drive me crazy just dont bother me,because after feeling/seeing the trigger there is nobody who reinforces them.

Staying for me was easier than leaving at one point.As time passed leaving became easier and easier and staying harder.

God Bless

Jules said...

You know what triggers are to me? They are not a reminder to me of the affair. What triggers are to me are a fear that these "things" actually still mean something to him. And when I really think about it, I bet they don't. Men just aren't that deep. Sure there may be some things - probably a hotel. That would be huge I think. But the little things, I don't think it's that meaningful. Hell, if I give my h a bday card I spent an hour picking out, he reads it, kisses me, puts it down and it ends up in the trash in a few days. Meanwhile I have cards from years ago. Men just aren't wired that way. Anonymous, for example, I doubt your h looks at the rug and thinks about her. Shawn, I doubt R thinks of her when he sees a Victoria's secret catalog. And for me, music is HUGE as well. I think the songs I think makes him think of her in reality don't. He just likes music. That is how I learned to put triggers behind me. I'd be lying if I tell you I have no triggers at all, but many, I just shut them out and say, whatever. And the others I just avoid altogether. This is just my humble take and how I deal with the T word!

Ann said...

Ah, the triggers. My triggers are many... a lot of them are anything I was doing at the time if the affair and of course when I found out... unfortunately he was cheating when I was at my happiest, I was painting a lot for a huge national commission I had landed, we had been going to the gym and working out 4x/week but decided to scrap the memberships and bought equipment and made a nice home gym in an extra room, so I was working out every morning and painting in the afternoons, had his breakfast, lunch, and dinner for him :-) we were doing yoga together, had lots of date nights...the type of couple everyone said was "perfect" and they were jealous of. HA! Frankly I have no idea how he had time to have an affair. That is why I was so blindsided. Dday was Nov 5, 2010, I haven't painted or exercised since the moment I had his phone and a text came in from that whore. I actually have an aversion to painting and exercising! I had to give up the commission. The date nights are just starting to become routine again. And I just started cooking again. ((And Shawn... you aren't the only one who went to crazy town! I was driving the bus! Boy, I could tell you some stories of what I put that bitch through! Besides telling her I never saw anyone try so hard to be #2, plastering stickers of her face with the word "whore" over it all over her bus stop (bet she loved sitting there wondering if the other people waiting for the bus recognized her) and texting her exactly at midnight on new years, knowing she would be excited to receive a midnight new years text... "Happy new year, whore. Hope you get a lot of business tonight!" ... poor whore had to move :-( oh well. I still made sure the door to door religious people and bridal/baby catalogues knew her forwarding address. ;-) ))

Anonymous said...

Hi Shawn, I just would like to tell you how your stories and all the emotions you atriculated at various points in your journey helped me feel better and hopeful. My husband of 12+ years(52)had sex (once) with a 28 yo single mother who I refer to all the time as a whore/slut. My husband is an insurance advisor and his job requires him to sometime meet with clients at their home. On 27 Nov 2012 he had a meeting (1st meeting) and my WH told me that during the meeting the whore started flirting with him. She kissed him first and my stupid WH gave in to temptation. He did not confess about his indiscretion until the 14 Jan 2013. (7 weeks of turmoil for him he said). The whore called Jim to advise that she has trich and that her doctor advised she called those who she had sex with of late. My WH was backed into a corner and had to confess because my health could be in danger. In Dec he told me he had std and blood tests done to make sure that he is clear -and all his tests were clear (i made him get another test after dday for my sanity ). Apparently, they dont test men for trich so he panicked and had to tell me. They had safe sex but the infection the whore had could be transmitted even with condoms. I had all tests done I didn't get anything. Thank God. I told mmy WH how God exposed his sin no matter how much he tried to conceal. Mind you the whole 7 weeks that I didn't know, I knew something was up because he was a acting withdrawn and distant- always deep in thought. I was planning of having a sit down talk with him to ask him what was going on. I didn't have to in the end because he had to confess. Today is one month since my Dday and am still going thru ups and downs emotions wise. Today is Vday and the date alone is a huge trigger for me. His was not a full blown affair but the deception and his plan to conceal and made a fool of me for the rest of our lives hurt me so much. I find it very hard to get past it. Your journey inspires me that maybe one day I will find it in me to forgive him fully. He said he is very sorry for hurting me so much and has been behaving like a remorseful infidel should.

Flaca said...

Triggers suck & so does that fucking lemon. Fuck that lemon. Lemons do make good margaritas though! Try to think of that lame lemon as being pulverized in your hands, into a yummy margarita! It has no power. Not Jaymie. You do.

My triggers are like others - music, fg FOOTBALL, date nights... my own looks. The OW was younger & prettier. I can acknowledge that. I know that I am not 'traditionally' pretty but green eyed, standing 5'8 and 125 lbs thin (after two kids) I'm not too shabby either. ;) And my boobs might be small but they are perky & cute!

I am trying to choose to not let triggers get to me. She might be pretty on the outside but I am fucking a great person - SMART, SEXY and FUNNY. On the inside she's a damaged, sick and sad individual. ps. I've seen her mom... she's short and fat. So when I get down about my own self esteem, get hit by I trigger, I try to remind myself:

"Fast forward whore - you'll pop out your fucked up kids and you will get FAT. Me I'll still be SMART, thin, green eyed, tall & sexy as hell. I could get plastic surgery, if I wanted, to get a nose job but she'll still be a midget troll skank with a big flabby ass." Karma is a bitch!

Ann said...

I love it, flaca :-) Like Judge Judy says: "Beauty fades, dumb is forever!" Haha!
My husband's whore was striving to be mediocre. She was also piss poor. He swallowed up all the lavished praise, he had a fan club. I understand it is insanely common for very good-looking, successful men to have affairs with way less attractive, very low income women because the women worship them. Ugh. This particular whore was some piece if work. I enjoyed putting the fear of god into her. Methinks she will think twice before bedding another married man. ;-)

Anonymous said...

LOLFlaca- there is no way in hell she's as funny as you are either ;) cheers, waikiki pepper

shawn thewife said...

Flaca! You're cracking me up, but I just gotta make one point... You do understand that your WH didn't stray because of your nose, right???

Affairs have so little to do with us and everything to do with our cheating spouses. Just had this discussion on another blog. We gotta stop taking any responsibility for the affair because even if we had big fat butts, saggy boobs, warts and abhorred the idea of a blow-job...our cheating bastard husbands shouldn't have went out looking for young, hot bodies to pork...NO! They should have talked to us about what was bothering them or just left us! That's the brave thing. That's the honest thing.
The ONLY thing I take responsibility for is how I missed all the red flags. Our communication, the attention I paid to Richard had diminished so greatly, that I was oblivious. That doesn't excuse his behavior, it's just something I feel strongly I had to acknowledge and improve upon.

One more thing...other blogs may frown on belittling the OWs. The most common train of thought is they are not worth any more of our time.
On THIS blog...I say...if it makes you feel better in the least, let it rip! The bitch whores get no reprieve from me!! If calling them skanks and sleaze bags and low life tramps keeps us from dialing their mobile phones, knocking on their doors or stalking their Facebook pages...a tad bit of name calling sounds like pure, therapeutic poetry to me!!
Love you all!
Hope & Hugs, Shawn
I know, I know....

Sarah said...

Hi! I came across your blog.... I am unsure how, but I spend every day always searching "surviving affairs". And somehow I found this. I love this.
My story is this. I am 31 years old and I am a betrayed spouse. The affair happened with the start of a friendship. And then one day my husband went taking pictures with some friends and she was there, they began talking and found they had a lot in common, they went to the same high school, they each had divorced parents, she was friends wth his brothers, and this led them to believe they were made for each other. The next day they had sex. And again and again,
Where was I? In a different country! I was in Canada, ready to give birth. We were waiting for my husbands visa to arrive and it finally did. 3 days after they started the affair, he flew from Mexico to Canada and my baby was born the next day. We went to stay at a family's home while we were awaiting my baby's birth certificate for a passport. And she was waiting for him in Mexico. I was suspicious. He would leave to pick up food and it would take him an hour. He would use the bathroom for a long period of time. And he would stay up late using Facebook. Then to make a very long story short, I found out about 6 weeks later. On sept 11, now that date has a double meaning for me. He had sex with this girl and she had gotten pregnant. But she miscarried. And I freaked out. I refused to return to Mexico. I bought a house in canada. And I said if you want me, stay here. So he did. I made him do a lot of things.
I made him write an email saying it was over and that's that. And he gave her his tshirt and I made him get it back through a friend.
It's so much to say well you would understand, but it's been about 5 months now and I am still so hurt. I can't even think about the birth of our baby without thinking that he was having sex with her and writing her love letters! He never even got me flowers!
He has "chosen" me and he seems committed to staying, but I am still so hurt and anyways your blog is so helpful.

Anonymous said...

I threw my cheating husband out.

one thing that strikes me about all the posts here is no matter how much you may rave and rant and feel good about driving the OW outta your lives/town/state/country she still got it better because she didnt get saddled with a cheater , you did.
I think all wives who stay with their cheaters do the OW a huge huge favor.If you really want to make her miserable gift wrap the cheating asshole and deliver him to her doorstep.I did.He married her and in two years cheated on her as well but she is a keeper and boy is her life hell.

The whole neighbourhood knows it and she has mad e a complete fool of herself.

As for me, i found a nice man , am happy and calm and loved and respected.

The cheater and the OW are welcome to each other, in my book.

Anonymous said...


I'm jonesin' for a Shawn Kick Ass New Blog Entry fix.

Get to work!

(With all due respect)


shawn thewife said...

MCG: LOL! I'm working in Vegas right now. Buying goodies for my store, not pole dancing. I promise to continue the saga of insanity soon!
You are sweet to miss me!
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

Anonymous said...

Oh goody! A vodka sauced, Wayne-Newton induced trip down memory lane sounds like just the ticket! Lol.


shawn thewife said...

Sarah: Please forgive me for the late response to your comment. I so want to be here for you during this incredibly difficult time.
I have heard other stories about wayward husbands cheating during the time of the birth of their children. It is incomprehensible to me.
For now, all I can say in an effort to ease your pain is that 5 months out is such a short time especially while dealing with a new born! As you can tell from my story, I was lost for over a year. can get better if your WH is willing to do the work. Words will not heal your marriage. It is ALL about actions.
I hope you are in IC and MC, and I also encourage your WH to get IC for himself. Richard needed months of IC to learn why he cheated so he would never go there again.
Please come here anytime for support and try using the links at the bottom of my blog for the online forums that saved me.
Focus on you and your new baby now. Do what you need to for your happiness and peace of mind. Your WH should follow your lead.
As hard as it may be to believe, your marriage can be stronger after all this. It just takes a very long damn time.
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

shawn thewife said...

To Anonymous that left her WH:
I didn't do Jaymie any favors! There is no way in hell she and Richard would have ended up together even If I divorced his ass right after DDay. She may have wanted the gravy train to continue, but Richard would have tired of her soon enough. My ranting and raving about her is like punching a pillow, merely cathartic, and for the first year, I didn't drive her away...I kept trying to drag her ass back in!! That's what most of my blog is about! What NOT to do with the OW!!
Some cheating spouses are not redeemable. Some are just as you say...pure assholes. BUT...I have learned to accept that sometimes really good people do unbelievably bad things. It's those people, like Richard, that can learn from their horrid mistakes, never to make them again.
I am so happy you came through infidelity and found your Road to Happy. Good for you!
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

Erica said...

Sarah - I wanted to echo Shawn's note about men having affairs when their wives are pregnant. This happened to me too & I was so surprised to find many other women who've had this happen to them. My H's 6 month affair started when I was pregnant with twins, and I found out a week before having them. Horrible. Horrendous. Devastating. I know your pain so well. I'm now 2 years past DDay (my twins turned 2 last month!) and then pain has subsided to a great extent because we're working very, very HARD individually (each do IC weekly) and collectively (once a week MC). We still have hard spells (last week was brutal for me) but I no longer associate my children with his affair. I no longer think every day 'you a-hole you were f-ing that whore while I was carrying our children' (but even typing this does get me a little agitated). It will get better, slowly but surely. GOOD LUCK & please try to focus on your little baby. I took lots & lots of pictures because I knew I wasn't incredibly present. I couldn't look at the pictures for a long while (it made me too sad) but now I can look at them & remember when I took then & the pain I was experiencing at the time doesn't come barreling back. Good luck! xx

Anonymous said...

My ex cheated on me ten years ago. Everytime I drive by this bowling alley (which isn't often) I remember it and I think, THANK GOD I'M NOT WITH THAT GUY ANYMORE! It's not a trigger, it's not a reminder, IT'S A CELEBRATION! I know due to kids & money some wives & girlfriends are obgligated to stay in the relationship, but I refused to live in that prison. NO WAY JOSE...that is not a life for me!

shawn thewife said...

Anonymous: BRAVO! I love your attitude, Sister!
BUT..I wanna challenge you on one thing....I'm only gonna speak for my situation, but I ask you to remember all of us walk in different shoes.
I didn't stay because of my kids, although that was a factor at first. I didn't stay because of money, although I certainly realized my life would be harder with our income spread so thin in two households.
I stayed because Richard worked his ass off to apologize, atone and make amends for his atrocious offense. I stayed because I had 30 years invested in this man that I had loved for over half of my life. I stayed because it was right for me.

Different strokes and all that!
Just saying...
Thanks for your comment. I am very glad you found your road to happy!
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

Anonymous said...

I too have decided to stay and that is not something I would have thought I would do if in this situation. Here is my sad little story.. Married almost 28 years when I discovered my husband had been having an affair for two years. He sent a sext by mistake to one of our sons. I am one year into this and when we first went to counseling the therapist said it takes at least two years to get somewhat healed. I can now believe that. I have found solace in reading this blog. I too feel the OW stole my enjoyment in things because she connected with my husband in certain ways. I completely agree with you, Shawn... DO NOT give her that power.. Take back what you enjoy. My husband is very remorseful and is also working his a** off to make amends. why should I leave now? My marriage is much better. He is focused on ME right now and I do feel as if I am slowly healing but it is often two steps forward one step back. I also encourage women to do what is right for YOU... What will make YOU ultimately happy not what other people think you should do or what you think your husband deserves...

shawn thewife said...

Anonymous: You have a great attitude! It's all about YOU! What will put you back on the Road to Happy! What other people think is so irrelevant! Useless!
Very glad to hear you're taking back your life.
You are a Survivor Sister!

Oh, gotta add...your cheating husband must have wanted to get caught! Either that...or he was one careless son of a bitch! Sending a sext to your son???
That is a serious brain fart!!

Hope you stick around and share your strength with others.
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

Anonymous said...

im the betraying spouse. the thingsi did have destroyed her. and now the triggers have becomme so bad she cant even be around me. please someone help me help her with the triggers. Most of the time i dont even cause the triggers, and she will lose it. it has only been about 3 months since i told her what i did. and much less than that since i gave her the whole truth. i have never been so disgusted with myself in my entire life and we need help. any advice would be gratly appreciated

shawn thewife said...

Anonymous betraying spouse: Your wife has suffered a monumental, life altering trauma. It takes a very long time to process something that your brain never contemplated before. A VERY long time. Obsessive thinking about affair details is quite normal after discovery and triggers abound.
If you can find a good therapist, I highly recommend it. For marriage counseling as well as individual sessions. If not, your road to recovery will require LOTS of reading. There is a list on the Healing Heart support message boards.

I didn't begin to heal until I found the Healing Heart web site. I do not overstate when I say the members of that board saved my marriage. Please have your wife check it out. It is a safe please to ask questions of others that truly understand the pain of infidelity.

For now, let your wife know you are in it for the long haul. You will give her whatever she needs to feel safe in the marriage. That means totally honesty, complete transparency and a commitment to give her the time she needs to process all the damage you caused.
The fact that you feel remorse is an excellent sign. You also need to admit/understand WHY it happened.
Each of you are in charge of your own healing, only then will you be able to work together to heal the marriage.
Good luck. If you want to email me....
Hope & Hugs, Shawn

Sherry said...

Oh, those triggers. I cannot stand them! I actually had to face one days ago. My husband and I went out to dinner with my sister and her boyfriend. Afterward, they asked if we wanted to hang out at a local bar. Well, that local bar was where my husband met up with HER one night. I froze in my chair at the restaurant before I could answer the question as to whether I wanted to go or not. My husband saw the look on my face and knew immediately what was going on with me. Anyway, I decided to go. It was tough. As I walked to the front door all I could picture was my husband walking in there that night to meet her. As I sat at the bar all I could think is, this is where he was with her. I worked to get those thoughts and images out of my mind and managed to have a nice time. I replaced a bad memory with a good one there, but that place will always be one of the places he met up with her.

Broken N2 said...

If you have triggers in your house, do you get rid of them, or face them? My WH took his BW to France for a month! Paris was where we went on our honeymoon and I have a ton of Paris pictures all over my house. Now when I look at them, all I can see is him there with HER, the f*&g BW!! It's been almost a year since DDay and it's just not getting better. But I can't decide what would be worse, facing those pictures and trying to remember the better days, or seeing an empty space where the pictures once hung?

Anonymous said...

I got rid of birthdays, Christmas, I burned all our pictures, took everything out of the house that reminded me of 25 years together. We are still together. House looks kind of empty without the pictures. I don't really care. Birthdays and holidays? Just another day. Anniversary? Don't celebrate it. She ruined our 25th anniversary. We never will have a 30th or a 35 or 50. They are gone. I started over. The past is dead. She knows this. If she bitches she can walk. Extream? Yes, and I don't care. It's what I need.

shawn thewife said...

Anonymous: I can feel that rage pouring out of my computer screen. Good. Type away! Let it rip. That poison needs a place to go. If you really wanna reconcile you gotta get rid of thatof that pain turned to venom.
I was right there with you for over a year after DDay. Yo don't say how long it's been since you found out about the infidelity, but I would venture to guess....fairly recently. But maybe not. Lord knows the anger runs deep and can continue eating away your insides for months on end.

I hope you're in MC. I hope you have someone to talk to about this most difficult recovery.
You can join us on The Healing Heart Message Boards. The link is at the bottom of my blog.
It's a whole lot easier to find your Road to Happy when you get to borrow a map from someone who already found a path.
Take care of you.
Hope & Hugs, Shawn