Piecing things together

HealingMama

MyPTSD Pro
Had therapy today. Told her about all of this. She notes that my experience of my relationship is very chaotic, and I do not seem like that about any other areas of my life. She is trying to help me grow in my connection to my inner truth, because I have been listening to him more over the years and it's time to value my own truth above his brainwashing. She noted how many roles I take on with him, and how it is not sustainable, which I know.

She asked me to connect to my internal truth, the stronger and resourced parts of me that don't get caught in this chaos to see what they say is the truth about this situation.

I think ultimately I am afraid to say I am truly done, because I do not fully understand how I was susceptible to this situation in the first place. He did such a good job presenting himself a certain way. I thought he was safe and thought I could trust him. I do not know how to trust my own perception or trust myself to keep me safe because I thought I found a safe, kind, caring person who was looking out for my best interests when I found him.

And that's clearly not true, at all, maybe never even was a little true, maybe he's always targeted me to exploit me somehow. Or maybe not, maybe that's just a side effect of self esteem issues in himself or something, but regardless of where it comes from I thought I had picked someone who had my back, who cared for me, and who would help make life better, and instead I have a nightmare. So it's like if I leave, I'll just fall for this same toxic crap again. I'm afraid that I will think I've found someone and it's another wolf in sheep's clothing.

My ability to trust has been shattered. Right now that's helping me see just how much of a liar he is.

My current plan and therapy homework:

Notice how I feel when I am strong and resourced, vs falling into chaos.
Notice what role I am in with regard to my husband. And then ask myself if that is the role I want to have.
 

HealingMama

MyPTSD Pro
With regard to the relationship, we had a virtual marriage workshop before all this exploded, and agreed to keep communications positive. I haven't decided yet what I want to do, and I'm hoping to get more info about the other woman before I have to make a decision. We have another workshop tonight. He's being nice to me. The home is more comfortable when we are getting along. He does little favors for me, and generally the environment is less draining. So I am making a conscious choice to play wife despite all this horrible information coming to light.

The cognitive dissonance is ripping me in half, but I want to be thoughtful and strategic so for now I am playing a role just like he has been. It would be nice to see him get a better job, but it might be better for me emotionally in the long run to let it go, to file the papers, and get him served, and not even bring him to any legal appointments. I admit that it would give me great pleasure to blindside him after the depth of deceit that has been revealed.

I'm really curious to know why he didn't say anything about me texting the other woman while pretending to be him. Like what, that's so f----- bizarre, how can you not say something? How could he just not see that it even happened, if he's managed to keep their communication secret this long?

(Side note: Another red flag, a few months back I found an app on his phone called Calculator plus that is really a decoy app used to hide texts, call logs, photos, etc.. He had an active subscription for it. At the time he acted dumbfounded, then had a laugh at the idea he could manage a secret life with his ADHD being as severe as it is. Clearly on some level he has been doing exactly that. I'm such an idiot for believing him.)

Him not saying anything about me texting his little ego boost from his account makes me file a little tally under the "I married a sociopath" category.

I did a lot of crying last night. There's this whole long recovery process from infidelity, and they recommend not making any big decisions until you get through some of the infidelity recovery work, but the early stage requires the unfaithful person to admit what they did, to show remorse, to answer questions honestly etc. Like THAT is ever going to happen. No, this man doesn't see me as an actual person deserving of respect or he would not have lied, continued to lie when confronted, and gone behind my back to talk to a girl 20 years younger than him. Which is honestly really f'ing creepy.

It's just too much. I know that I have had a hard time leaving this guy.... but I do not see how I can stay after what I have seen over the last week. I used to believe his lies and manipulation that all of this chaos and drama is somehow my fault. But clearly he is impaired at best, sadistic at worst, and this is about him. He will just find another target.

I am strong. I am resilient. Manipulators like my husband target strong, confident people because they enjoy the challenge of breaking them.
There is nothing wrong with me for assuming good intentions in a relationship partner.
There is nothing wrong with me for assuming my relationship partner is trustworthy until I find out otherwise.
I have some healing to do, to make me less of a target for manipulative, invalidating people.
 

HealingMama

MyPTSD Pro
Update. Husband has been totally open and understanding about this secret friendship issue. We have had better communication than we have had in months. He's mostly doing all the right things. He continues to apologize for breaking my trust. There's still a lot of other problems but this one is being addressed well.

My T went on vacation and for the first time EVER in therapy, I had an attachment reaction. One of my protectors came out and has been growling at everyone. This one also feels really really bad when it's present. Like how chronic pain puts you on edge and like stretches you with a sharpness, it's like that kind of. I can't exactly convince the system the protector isn't necessary either bc things haven't been very safe.

I am taking a few days away for some r&r. I finally got the protector to go back inside. I am trying to not take my Xanax. I've had to take it a lot over the last week dealing with this betrayal crisis.
 
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