Most of us have been blinded-sided by the way our partners have abandoned us for someone else. They change the whole history of our marriages claiming unhappiness for a long time and placing blame at our feet. We question, we doubt ourselves and suffer unbelievable pain. We learn to exist and get by, haunted by the accusations, condemned to a new and frightening life. They seem to move on with their affair partners, enjoy their lives, holidays, fancy homes with the "replacement" and show no remorse, regret or loss. I am only two years into this mess.... but am wandering for those people who are further along, did the cheaters remain in the fairy-tale, was it happily ever after???? or did reality strike?
LG what you describe is a pattern that my ex displays in slightly different ways. Different behaviours but the same outcomes. Dysfunctional relationships where they are never happy. That's what karma is. Because until people learn from their mistakes they go on to repeat them.
My job was to figure out why I was with someone like that to make sure that I see the red flags properly. That includes people that project blame for their own unhappiness onto other people. I'm sure if you were seeing someone in the future LG and he started going on about an ex like that you would see it all very differently. The only certainty is that the next one will be standing in your shoes one day. Just as you stood in the ex GF shoes. I read a very good book by a relationship expert once that said how we behave in relationships has very little to do with who we are with and much more to do with who we are. It makes sense that. I was with, y ex because I didn't think enough of myself. Because I thought love was just about self sacrifice. Chafing those beliefs has transformed my life.
If I could take the liberty of answering this blog using examples of my own marriage and the relationship my stbx had with his ex girlfriend.
They had been together for 2 years when he dumped her stating that he had had enough of her. She was dull and they had nothing in common.
Some time later we became an item and questions from me about them revealed that he was bored, she didn't come up with anything to do. Sex was boring and he frequently pretended to be asleep when she " nudged him " for sex. He would purposely cause rows with her to keep her at arms length. I thought very little about these answers. We did not have this type of relationship and I very agreeably believed his description of her. Dull, boring and miserable.
Moving on and we are arguing from time to time. Accusations from him that I love arguing. I failed miserably to defend myself and I began to doubt myself. I sat some distance away from him....an arms length away and so relieved when I was allowed out of the dog house and allowed back in the fold. A promise that I would not question him again, he was right and I was wrong.
The bedroom mind games had also began. My equivalent to "nudging him" was met with "not tonight Josaphine" I'm tired. Ok I thought, no probs. I'm comfortable in my own skin, I don't have inhibitions, I'm happy with the light on etc etc. now after every single attempt at instigating sex, I am rejected. What's wrong and questions that should have been answered we're met with hostile, often violent outbursts. The end result was I no longer "nudged" him. Now I start to feel uncomfortable, turn the light off. I feel a little used but stubbornly carried on with this crap believing, so wanting it to get back to how it had been. Now some time later he complains that I never instigate sex. Tough comes my reply, you should have said yes the gazillion times you turned me away. I am now accused of psychological mumbo jumbo. Now I'm nuts but no matter what he says I cannot turn it round and we have lost what was once a good thing.
We go out a lot, re visit places many times, now he no longer wants to go out so much preferring to mong on the settee. I cope with this for a bit until I go stare crazy and moan about four walls, boredom, working hard and not playing at all. Off we go some place usually arguing about where to go. I didn't want to see the dullness, the boredom, the mundaneness of us. I can't believe how my fervour for wanting to rekindle how we had been was still so strong. It was my every waking moment. I still believed we were essentially good together.
Now he stands before me, telling me he's leaving he's had enough of me. I'm dull, I'm boring, we have nothing in common, sex is rubbish. Now looking back I had become the ex girlfriend. I certainly didn't start off anything like her but how I wonder what she was like pre him. Some months after leaving here and telling me that he has had enough of the responsibility of a relationship and wants to be on his own he is now living with someone else. No doubt in my mind that he will paint a very miserable picture of me to her.
No doubt what so ever in my mind that he will treat her the same as his ex's. I am trying not to use my energy on him anymore but since I am on the subject I hope that she has the balls to kick him in his and send him packing when he starts to zap the life out of her. I hope she does not take on the appearance of those he has treated very badly. I wish I could think that he has met someone who he won't treat badly and that he lives a full and happy life but my knowledge of him is that he is way to f....d up for that.
I'm starting to feel ok, in fact better than ok, I'm good
Ex's sister divorced father of her children and lives with a reptile all very happy despite him thieving. Her ex a noble man died because he lost the will. Love IS blind.
My ex is living the dream at mine and my childrens expense.
You will get past all this karma crap. Bad things happen to good people. Yes I do spend a hunge amount of time wishing her and him ill and fantasise about a huge Lotto win so I can reap revenge however its a fantasy even I get that now.
Your choices will come to you but when your ready. You will survive this you will be changed. As for them, they aren't us and I wouldn't trade. I'm still bitter and angry but I can cope. You will too :-)
I would love my x to sit down and tell me honestly what he feels about everything that has happened four years on. He left me as he was besotted with ow, yet things have not gone to plan for him. When we went for mediation in 2010, he told them that his girlfriend and him would be renting somewhere together. His girlfriend did move house but my x lived with his mother and now lives in a rented house of his own, so they have never lived together. I honestly think that if he could have forseen that he would never have left. But although i have financial struggles and i think both my children have been scarred by divorce i am happy to be single so maybe she did me a favour?? Never mind the maybe SHE DID!
It is difficult to change the direction of your thinking overnight, I genuinely believe that the majority of us at some time or another would like to know the answer to that question. But, with time you will come to realise that you will never know. If they, the X's, chose to keep things from us during our marriages, then of course the same will be of now, post breakup.
One thing for sure, not many, if any will come knocking at our doors years later admitting failure, regret or remorse.
My STBX has 'moved on' since our split with more than one woman, now that says it all for me, yes I have been so easily 'replaced' but, was he looking for a way out or was it just the fact that he was found out? I will never know and quite frankly I no longer care.
I like Pixy, still have a long way to go on this journey and I would never confess to having any answers, but what I will say is having seen my own father, who too left his family as the product of an affair, on his death bed last year his eyes were full of regret, but he still never uttered the words "I'm sorry".
Divorce causes so much feelings of emotion that I am sure the person who has walked away, must feel it too, possibly in a different way, but whether or not they will ever face their demons head on, you will never know, so you have to turn all the energy you can towards healing yourself. Do not waste time looking for the answers you will never find and even if you did, like Sunflower, would it be the one you want to hear?
Hand on heart, if I was to ask myself what my STBX is thinking, I am really not sure, as he never did run all the way home, just to say he was sorry. Remember actions always speak louder than words!
I wanted to add a comment after reflecting on Pixy's comment about indifference.
I read here a lot about indifference and I think Pixy description of that is much more realistic. How can anyone feel indifferent to a life changing event even years on? Divorce is compared to a bereavement and I've never heard anyone say ohhh yes I'm indifferent to that persons passing now. For me divorce didn't work like that and I'm done with trying to achieve or pedal impossible standards.
For me, it was getting myself to a point where I have learned the lessons I needed to learn in order to build a new life where I have moved on to the extent that my life is not defined by divorce or what he did. It's. It not indifference. I have a whole new life, but I can't be indifferent about my past, it just doesn't define who I am or what I'm about.
Hopefully I've made sense, but Pixy is spot on. I don't think you can ever feel neutral about events. It was more about getting to the point where these events have no real power over my future.
The most significant part to your post is that sentence where you say that we doubt ourselves.
Once I realised I was seeing my separation through the lens of poor self esteem, I realised that alone was distorting my perception. The key is to stop focussing on what the ex thinks/feels or whatever. We can never really know and actually it is a complete waste of energy when you think about it. Cars/houses/holidays don't make a relationship good and do not denote happiness. They are after all just things. My ex and I had all of that nice cars, nice house expensive holidays and I was miserable as sin.
It's how we feel about ourselves that matters. If you can work on that, then everything else starts to make sense. I found the world confusing and felt like a victim until I went to work on my own self perception. When I started to fix that everything else made sense. I started to see things clearly and for what they were. That included my ex. I began to believe and still do that I deserve much better than him. Until you really start to believe the same and stop doubting yourself, you will continue to be haunted by what he did.
That's why I went into therapy as breaking these ingrained behaviours was really very hard indeed. I was with my ex because I doubted myself and didn't think I deserved better than what he dished out. That was the issue actually. Because if I had proper regard for myself that man wouldn't have got past the first few dates. Doubting myself cost me a lot. I married someone who was emotionally unavailable.
So, now I've set the context, I will try to answer your question. It doesn't matter whether my ex is with someone or not. He is still who he is with his limitations and problems. His inability to deal with his own issues will lead him into one disastrous relationship after another where he projects blame on to that person for his own shortcomings. He can't have happy ever after until he deals with those issues that cause him to behave badly. So it isn't about who he is with, it is about who he is. Happiness can not be achieved until he deals with those issues.
My advice is switch the focus from him and his life to yours and the reasons you experience that self doubt. Many find these matters predate the marriage. Remember the answers lie within yourself. It's just a question of getting to them as Pixy mentions above.
Well my stbx's affair has imploded. He's on his own and miserable. Do I feel indifference? Sadly, no. The bitch in me is glad. The nicer part of me is just very, very sad that he could have thrown 30 plus years of marriage down the drain for a fantasy.
And there is yet another part of me that revels in the freedom of being single and being able to do what I want, when I want, that no longer has to stroke his ego. That is the part that is growing, that tries to analyse why I ended up in an unhealthy co-dependent relationship. It still has a long way to go, but I'm getting there.