Starting counseling tomorrow

We are finally starting counseling tomorrow and I am very excited and hopeful about this.

Many of you may know 'our story' but we have been married for 13+ years and have always had 'issues' that I had no idea how to label or resolve. We went through some more stable periods and then we have been through some horrible periods, typically starting with some type of catalyst such as a lot of personal hardships (job loss, facing overwhelming responsibility, death of loved ones, etc). There has been a lot of dishonesty, disappointment, empty promises, and just flat out devastation in the last 6 years...which I think was a direct result of a short custody battle and us winning custody of my step-daughter. Neither of us knew what we were getting into, just knew we had to get her out of her situation with her neglectful and drug dependent mother. As our marriage spiraled out of control, so did his ADD, and the end result of 5 long years of fighting over SD and other various issues that were exacerbated as his ADD was going into overdrive, we finally separated..and he had an affair. He lost his mother, I lost my father, and it truly was one of the most horrible times in my life.

We hit rock bottom and decided to come up fighting...together. We reconciled last Dec and have been rebuilding since. He's happy to have the DX of ADD, but isn't thrilled about starting counseling, but is going and I know once he goes he'll be OK with it. The fear of the changes it will bring terrify him, I am sure.

It couldn't be coming at a better time, he has been behaving a bit different lately...well, it's familiar behavior..but it's still somewhat scary and hurtful. It involves him being threatened (because I just started back to school..on campus) and him withdrawing and being defensive in response to his fear.

Just keep us in your prayers....this is quite possibly our last hope. Our counselor has seen us a few times and when we got the DX of ADD we found out our insurance wasn't paying for her..so we had to get a balance paid off and she's seeing us at at 50% discounted rate. I am very grateful. She moved here from FL several years ago, and when she was in FL she ran a group therapy for adults with ADD. She said it was supposed to run for 6 months but that they made so much progress and loved it so much that they kept it going for over 2 years. It is a miracle itself to have found someone in our area who correctly diagnosed him AND who has experience treating it. I feel truly blessed.

Great session today!

First session went well. The ball is now rolling. I cleared up a few fears I had and she is standing behind her ADD diagnosis and feels positive that she can help us manage the bad parts of it successfully.

We found out that she too has ADD, how cool is that? I think my husband is really excited that she can 'relate' to him, although I'm sure some of the things she said were hard for him to hear. She said that people with ADD are fairly certain that their way is the best way, the right way, and they really like getting their way...in other words, very stubborn. My husband has always felt he gave a lot more in the marriage than me, and I felt the opposite..that he took way more. He agreed that she was describing him and I felt like it was a small victory for me to finally have someone say that to him, someone saying "we just think our way is best", relating to him, and he agrees. Wow.  I had to fess up that, even though I don't have ADD, I like getting my way and feel my way is the best way too. :-P

We discussed this website and how helpful it had been to me to understand him and relate to him in a better way. She stressed that there ARE ways to get your point across with someone with ADD, but nagging, fussing, cussing, and yelling does not do it. I told her that I've given up my long rants and just started matter of factly stating my feelings and then walking away..and letting it go. This has made a HUGE difference for us. I told her that I HAD to be heard, HAD to be validated (by him verbally) and would not let go of anything...but oddly one day it hit me like a ton of bricks...I NEVER got what I was fighting so hard to get. I would just get tired of being mad at him and let it go...after a few days of stewing. I told her that I know he has ears and common sense and me stating my feelings once, clearly and without anger, even if it takes 2 weeks, I will eventually see that he heard me. She agreed this was perfect. I am proud of myself. I love him enough to try.

I didn't get a chance to discuss the infidelities and what she feels can be done to avoid this in the future...but it was mentioned at the end of the session and we will discuss it next time. We'll be going every 2 weeks.

 

 

 

Second session today. She

Second session today. She gave us the paperwork and will be doing the 'official' evaluation when we get it back to her. She is certain it is just a formality, but said it would help if he decided to take meds, she could just send the results to his doctor. She also has 2 other couples she is working with that are dealing with an ADD marriage and asked if we'd be interested in starting a group 'meeting/counseling' thing occasionally. I think we will give it a try.

He told her that I had been 'pulling away' from him for a couple of weeks. I knew he felt this, but honest to God it isn't true. I had PMS one day, but was afraid to tell him it was JUST FREAKIN PMS because I was afraid he'd STILL take it personally or think I was just making excuses for the 'real' issue. He admitted he can take a small issue and make a huge issue out of it. Along the same lines, he's not doing well with work..he's having a very hard time focusing (he just gave up an energy drink addiction) and is calling me almost daily with some 'crisis' that seems to me to be him blowing things way out of proportion. I told our counselor that I was learning to just listen and not give advice or speak my opinion because increasingly I felt like the more I tried, the worse I made things. What should be a phone call where he's just calling to vent ends up in him being frustrated that I don't understand his feelings on the issue and me being upset because I just want to help. With all of these issues she said all he is wanting is for me to 'ground' him. She said he's just struggling for grounding and all I really needed to do was just to let him touch me. To cuddle with him, hug him, and just listen when he vents about work. She really does have his number already...because she is 100% right. He FEELS I'm pulling away because I've started school again and it is taking some of my time. He NEEDS our time when we just lay in bed and cuddle. He told me the other day that when I laid on his chest and fell asleep the night before that it made everything feel so much better with life. Although I REALLY enjoy this time together, it is just hard for me to understand how much it dictates to him what I feel or don't feel. I need to give more thought to it and make a little more effort. There was a time in our marriage, for years, that he slept on the couch. We never shared a bed. It was a huge red flag, but I believed his 'excuses' that he just didn't want to share the bed with all of the dogs. So, I really do value our time together every evening, watching TV in bed...but I under estimate the value of it for him.

Much to my surprise, when I was telling her how I feel he blows everything out of proportion, like he takes some things far too seriously..she told me that it was OK, that was just how he'd wired, and it's not something that needs to be fixed or that I need to feel bad for him because of. He told me he'd been up late one night this week worried about something at work...and honestly, from my perspective, it was something that should have been handled in 2 minutes. I told her I felt bad for him that he'd lose sleep over something that I would have just handled and moved on. She insisted that I needed to stop worrying about things like that and needed to stop feeling like it was my job (because I love him) to fix all of these things that make me feel sorry for him. I told her that I hate that things like that, and things like him feeling so insecure about our marriage that he takes things like a simple facial expression personally, and she said she would defintely work with him on his insecurity, but that the rest is just who he is and not something that needed to be fixed.

Just all very interesting. My homework is to just LISTEN and stop worrying about him and his 'dramatic' reactions to everything. I've got my work cut out for me. LOL

 

Thanks for Posting This

Hi Sherri,

I wanted to thank you for posting this, as my wife also deals with difficulties at work which feel overwhelming to her.  She also vents to me a lot about it.  She sometimes asks for advice, and when I give suggestions of what I might try if I were in her situation (which, admittedly, I am not), she too often gets upset with me and tell me I just don't understand her situation.  So I find myself in a position where I start out trying to help (because she has asked for my help) and end up feeling angry because it feels like she has gotten angry at ME because she thinks I don't understand.  (She has told me, thought, that she is NOT angry at me, so I am also trying not to take her anger personally - which is very difficult.)

So, like you, I sometimes feel like I am just making things worse, and the result is that instead of my wife feeling bad, now we BOTH feel bad. And so I am also trying to just listen, but when she ASKS for my advice, if I don't give it, she does get angry with me.  She'll say something like "I NEED your help!!"  Haven't quite figured out yet how to respond for requests for help without us both ending up frustrated, but that doesn't mean I'm not still trying!

3rd session

Somewhat 'documenting' this here for my own reference, and wanting to share/update too...hoping it'll help someone.

Hoping...My husband NEVER asks for my advice, so I don't know how you'd handle that situation. I just give my advice unsolicited and it pisses him off. :-/ I have stopped doing this...ironically, he has stopped calling with a daily crisis since I told our counselor about it last session. She did give me some advice about this subject but it is pertaining to dealing with my 12 year old daughter (who has been abducted by aliens and replaced with an arguementative, inconsiderate turdhead..she sees our counselor as well). She said if she asks me "what should I do" I am to say "I'm not sure, I really don't know, what do YOU think you'll do". Might be worth a shot. I literally have to remind myself, silently, 'do not argue..do not give advice..say nothing and just listen' ..the point that I will miss half of the conversation sometimes. I cannot tell you the number of times he'll get angry with me, saying I don't understand, and I will just drop the subject immediately. I don't always hide my disappointment or hurt and 9 times out of 10 he'll say he's getting off of the phone (frustrated) and then not long after call me or text and apologize. He knows what he's doing..but we BOTH know it isn't worth arguing about. I think to myself sometimes "how many damn times do we fall into this well before we just decide to seal it up and stop doing it??!!"

The key things I got out of counseling today were...

-she does not feel his affair is necessarily ADD related. In contrast to what the information is here, she does not feel that cheating is a 'symptom' or 'result' of ADD. She basically said that she would guess he more or less just gave up on the marriage..because it was so bad..versus it being his ADD going out of control. There are several ADD symptoms that I would think could directly tie into cheating, so I'm not sure why she wants to separate the two. Not sure if it is individual to my situation or just her feeling about it as a whole. I just basically left things with the understanding that his cheating is a HUGE part of why I wanted us to go to counseling and at this point I'm not comfortable assuming anything. He is doing everything I need and want him to do in order to rebuild my trust. It hasn't been smooth sailing, he had moments early on when I thought he would just never be able to pull it off, but he got his act together and has been the picture perfect idea of what you would want someone to be if, God forbid, they cheated and had to regain your trust.

-she feels I am OCD..more "O" than "C'. I analyze EVERYTHING to death. I take everything personally. I cannot separate his mood from my own. I won't argue with him, when he's grouchy, but it hurts my feelings terribly when he is. It is a big burden to put on someone that they aren't allowed to ever be grumpy without having to deal with my hurt feelings on top of the thing that is making him grumpy. Worst part is that HE is exactly the same way. It was a bad week for me...he 'picked' at me because I had apparently done something to stir up some 'pissed off' in him and so his way of dealing with it is to pick at me. Little jabs. "you've lost focus on the marriage" which I translate as "I'm not getting enough attention and I am going to cheat again". Our counselor was pretty hard on him for that...saying "look, she's really sensitive..and not for no good reason..could you try and watch what you say and consider how it will make her feel before throwing out the little 'jokes' as you call them?" When she asked me if I tried to talk to him about it, I told her no..because when he is in that mind set, all it would do is evoke more picking. I finally lost it last night...and just cried and cried. He felt horrible and took a few hours off this morning so we could spend some time together. Hopefully someday it won't take him pushing me to that point for him to stop 'picking'. It was a stressful week and he wasnt' as understanding (action wise) was he should have been...claiming the whole time to 'understand' that I was just busy. (school, Bible study) The MAIN thing that I am VERY proud of him for...when I pointed out to him that when he gets something up his butt (like he gets jealous because my lab partner is a male) instead of just talking to me about it, that is when the picking starts. He's threatened so he has to 'attack' me..and I'm not strong and secure enough to 'blow it off' as nothing. Anyway, he said he was sorry, said he did not conciously do it, and promised to catch himself and control it better. STARK contrast to what it used to be...him somehow turning it around and making it all about ME and somehow my fault.

THIS is why I stay and this is why I love him and respect him more each day. He is growing. He is capable of empathy and he does admit when he's wrong...at least when it matters most.

One last thing...he said something at one point about "I'm trying to understand that she doesn't think like I do and trying to be more considerate" and she told him she was glad to hear him say that...that he needed to understand that our counseling was not just about me understanding him and how he thinks but him understanding that he had to do the same for me. :-) I really like her.

This is so nice!

Dear SherriW13,

This is so nice to hear you saying you respect your husband.

Knowing about the ADHD seems to make a great difference on how to read and understand the things that occur in a marriage... seems also that this is why you can develop empathy with him even after cheating, or not being able to be the person you fall in love several years ago.

Wish you the best! Having your writings here for your reference are extremely useful, but as you already may know, not only for your but also for the rest of us.

Wish you the best!

Kindly,

Pumpkin

obsessive

she feels I am OCD..more "O" than "C'. I analyze EVERYTHING to death. I take everything personally. I cannot separate his mood from my own. I won't argue with him, when he's grouchy, but it hurts my feelings terribly when he is. It is a big burden to put on someone that they aren't allowed to ever be grumpy without having to deal with my hurt feelings on top of the thing that is making him grumpy

 

Sherri,

I asked several months ago if there was something about the nonADD person that maybe made their thinking more rigid than the ADDer.  I think you have something here about Obsession.  Example is

  • adder bf and I had a verbal conflict, both of us trying to make the other hear our side and validate us, but we both dug in our heels and continued to make our points.
  • he goes into overwhelm realizing that the conflict is escalating; he knows overwhelm has led him to major anxiety and depression in the past so he has learned to shut it all down before his emotions are out of his control--he just tells me that the conversation is over and he will not discuss it and he tells me to stop.  At the time we were together I didn't understand, but now I do.  He is terrified of becoming anxious and depressed because it can take him months to recovertakese. He just doesn't allow himself to go there and he doesn't want anyone in his life to push his buttons to make it more likely he will find himself anxious and depressed.  What he doesn't realize is that conflict and buried emotions will have consequences whether you consciously know it or not.
  • On the other hand, when conflict enters my life, I can't stand it because I want people to like me.  I want agreement/or let's agree to disagree at all costs.  The stress of no resolution is harder on me than the stress of talking it out.  If I stuff my feelings about conflict I tend to bubble over in tears.  I don't go into anxiety and depression because I don't allow myself to not stay in unresolved conflict very long.  I think I may get obsessed about conflict being an issue that someone doesn't like me or I fear that they will abandon the relationship.  I am going to really work on Byron Katie's methods to really examine how I think about this.  I believe you are right I take things too personally and I need to respond by not doing that.  Perhaps we both need to take on the qualities of the other.  He needs to do more resolution and I need to just back off and end things when they get heated without taking them personally.  Sometimes I think we choose different types of people because we unconsciously know they have lessons to teach us.   

Thanks for sharing,

Brenda

Very good

Very good points...hrmmm...

Part of why I think I react the way I do (i.e. immediately start to panic thinking he's going to give up, take his moods personally) is because of past hurts...most specifically ,his affair. Something I don't think I've mentioned is that before his affair, when we were struggling with his mother's declining health and severe financial problems because he was out of work for about 6 weeks oddly enough I felt like it was bringing us closer. He thanked me over and over for standing by him, we had stopped fighting so much, and we seemed to be pulling together. All of the sudden, he started being distant, wouldn't talk to me or have anything to do with me, and I realized it was going on but just tried to be patient, not take it personally, and it ended up being when his affair started. I still cannot separate the two...his bad mood - my inner sense of panic. I just don't trust him...yet. I had it all documented, as I had a private forum with 5 of my closest friends, and I would post about it almost daily. It was hell to go back and read myself saying "I tried to reach out to him and he just pushed me away..I don't know what is going on" and reliving the weeks leading up to and after I had to ask him to leave...NEVER SUSPECTING he was cheating. One night in particular I will never forget...him just ripping me up one side and down the other. I barely said a word...but he went on and on about how he hated me, but he loved me...and how he just could not be with someone who hated his daughter (the step daughter we had custody of that hated me from day one...lied, stole, told people she wished I were dead, etc), and just went on and on. I didn't realize it was him 'justifying' his affair to himself, I suppose. I still cannot fathom how he could sit there with me, in our home, and blame everything on me and tell me he hated me...knowing that it was all in justification of him being with another woman. No matter how much I KNOW he regretted it 2 weeks in, I still can't wrap my mind around how he got to the point of justification. I trusted him to a fault. So many people suspected he was cheating...and even though I asked him 30 times during our 2 month separation, I truly believed him when he denied it. :(

Now I know we're supposed to leave the past in the past...and in many areas I am very proud of the progress I have made doing this. However, the betrayal I feel is real. I didn't cause it. I didn't deserve it. I didn't think it would ever happen...again. He has cheated twice. Once a cheater, always a cheater? I flat out told our counselor that my #1 reason for insisting we go to counseling was because whatever it is that makes him cheat, I want it fixed. If it cannot be fixed, I don't want to be married to him. When she says that the ADD isn't to blame for his cheating necessarily, I am not sure if I should be happy or depressed. Yes, we endured 6 years of pure hell before he 'finally' gave up and cheated...but will it just take 6 months the next time?

Anyway..didn't mean to ramble. This is just my 'reason' for my obsession. I truly feel that I am a monster who has been created by all of the devastation and pain I have felt by the actions of the man I love and have devoted my life to for 13+ years. YES, he is doing much better now...and I should focus on that and move forward. I pray about this a lot. I know I need to just have faith that no matter what happens, me obsessing over him cheating won't change what the future holds. If he's going to do it, he's going to do it. Our counselor is far more confident in him than I am. He is far more confident in himself that he won't do it again than I am. It will just take time. Until then, I will just pray for the strength it takes to endure and the ability to 'talk myself down' when I feel a panic coming on.

I ONLY obsess like this over him. Other relationships I am able to just have faith in and let them unfold as they will. Well, I obsess like this over his daughter too..but she is no longer living in the home, so I don't have to deal with her as much anymore. I used to obsess over her complete and utter lack of respect for me and the fact that this is my home too...and after 6 years of him taking her side and letting her bulldozer over me he finally let her have it a few months ago and told her exactly how he expected her to behave and treat me..she moved out shortly thereafter. For the most part, I've managed to stop obsessing over her and letting her get under my skin. So I don't think I'm OCD necessarily, just a human reacting to what life has dealt me.

Anyone have any suggestions as to how I might speed up this process? I keep telling myself it will just take time to trust him fully again...it has been almost a year. He jumps through hoops. I am getting better. My biggest struggle is when he accuses me of 'giving up' or 'not focusing on the marriage' or giving him enough attention when I am busy or have anything going on that takes my attention away from him for just one day. Literally. One day. I've been sick since Wed afternoon. VERY sick. Really bad stomach bug with severe headache and body aches. Wed evening I had Bible study, wasn't home, he was pouty. Got lost on my way home, ended up taking 20 minutes longer to get home..this severely aggrivated his already pouty mood. I felt bad but went to Bible study anyway so when I got home I went straight to bed. He was obviously upset...so I snuggled next to him and just decided to let him work through it himself. (not to talk about it..probably wouldn't have gotten me anywhere anyway with his frame of mind he was in). Yesterday I woke up VERY sick...barely able to stand up...head pouding, body hurting, stomach issues, etc. He went to work and texted me around 10 saying he didn't know what my attitude towards him the night before was or that morning but that he felt like just giving up. Things like this just FLOOR me. I begged him to please understand how badly I felt, there was nothing against him, I just couldn't hold my head up...was trying to get some rest. I mean how can I progress towards trusting that he'll not "give up" on the marriage again, when I get sick and he acts like I don't love him because I am not my chipper self for God's sake??? HE is just as obsessive as I am....and his comments have GOT to stop. Going to mention it in counseling again. All I could do was cry and hope that he could talk himself through it. Seems he did.

On a side note, he took his eval results confirming ADHD to the doctor and got a prescription for Concerta. I HATED what it did to him when he took it a few years ago...but that's another story. Anyway, insurance denied it saying he's too old. Dr. had to file some form or something and insurance is saying that it might take 4-8 weeks for them to review it since it is 'non-emergent'. I hate his insurance..it is always a battle to get them to do anything. He's very frustrated and discouraged...and I think that is part of why he's been so edgy. No guaruntee they'll pay it even after reviewing it...and it is $180/mo..which we cannot afford. It seems there should be a law against an insurance company deciding someone doesn't NEED their meds for 4-8 weeks...bastards.

 

 

 

Today's session

He talked to her about his meds (she doesn't prescribe his meds, but he looks to her for more advice on them than his PCP). He did manage to put into words what he's feeling...and I'm beginning to understand that he's struggling to understand WHAT he is feeling with the new meds. It sounds crazy..but he gave the example of how he has lost his ability to multi-task. I noticed he wasn't texting me near as much while he was at work. Today we were texting and he said he had to go, was in a conference call, and kept getting lost during the call because of me texting him. It dawned on him...he has lost his ability to multi-task. I have NEVER been able to do more than one thing at a time ..be on the phone, computer, text, etc. I cannot focus on either. I struggle to keep up even when I'm chatting on IM with more than one person at a time. He was really upset by the fact that he has lost this ability, but in the end the counselor pointed out that it was better to give each thing 100% of his attention vs. giving 10 things 10% of it.

We discussed my concerns that the meds seem to be making him more sensitive to everything..more emotional, I suppose. He did admit he was a bundle of emotions most of the time. We aren't sure if it is just this time of year..the 1st anniversary of his Mom's death, the 1st anniversary of my Daddy's death..the thoughts of everything we were going through last year..his guilt...and the fact that he hasn't forgiven himself yet...or if it is something the meds are causing. Right now, she just wants us to focus on getting through the holidays. Sher made a very good point...that we have been trying so hard to improve our marriage, to stay on the same page, and we've come SO far and made so much progress that she feels now maybe we should just relax a little and focus on getting through the next month or two and then start trying to deal with the bigger issues..such as my husband forgiving himself for everything that happened. It has caused problems between him and my remaining family (my brother and sister and their families) because he has distanced himself from them out of guilt..feeling for sure they hate him (they don't care about anything except that I am happy)...and he is doing the ultimate 'rejection' of everyone in order to avoid what he feels is inevitable...their rejection of him...but until today he didn't see it that way. He felt he was justified in what he was doing. Our counselor handled that situation like a pro. "isn't what you're doing exactly what you're accusing them of doing?" (rejecting him)

I do think the meds have made him more open....he talks a LOT now. He has always liked to talk, but he talks about 'deep' stuff now..so maybe it is like the counselor said, the emotions he's feeling are things he needs to feel and face. He has always managed to suppress them and successfully avoid and deny things...so I know she's right. He talks a lot about us and our relationship and how excited he is about things and how proud he is of us for our progress.

One thing that surprised me the other day, that I actually meant to ask about in counseling but forgot. We were talking about how things used to be and I used the word "miserable" to describe what we were feeling for many years. He seemed sincerely upset that I would describe things that way...and I admit I have no idea why he would deny how horrible things were. I am just thinking it is the typical "as long as I'm nice to him, talk to him, then things really aren't that bad" way he had of living his life for so long. But..just like I said to him "come on, PLEASE admit you were miserable...you cheated...surely to God I am not to believe you did that while you were happy" The only thing I can even come close to figuring is that he does not want to think I was "miserable" because it scares him for some reason. Definitely hard to understand him sometimes. Anyone have any insight?

waynebloss's picture

Sherri, It would bother me

Sherri,

It would bother me too, if my wife and I lasted through this, and one day she said that we were miserable during this time.  I cannot explain it, just might be the DNA making of a man with ADD or just a man thing?  I do not know but I would change the subject or not agree with her choice of words.  Remember, growing up we were taught not to be scared, do not show emotion no matter what. It is your job to take care of the wife and family and when we are shown that we failed, it hurts us deeply!  We cannot tell you that it does but knowing that I did this to my wife and kids KILLS me when I think of the last 2 years! (Tearing up now thinking about it while at work. gotta stop or the other guys will start wondering!) 

Our first and second counseling sessions were my wife's chance to bring to light the things that I have done to them without knowing it.  Hearing them I just sat there, stunned and feeling less like a man more and more she talked.  Then I was asked how I was feeling and I did not answer, just had tears streaming down my face.  See a man, hearing this, that our wife and kids were miserable because of US is something that rips at our core.  The first time my wife saw me cry was 3 days after the affair came to light, I was so scared that she would leave with the kids that it unleashed the damn that was built and I cried like a baby.  She said that is when she knew that I was truly sorry for what I did and that she could actually start to forgive me.  I just think it is a man thing, and stop trying to understand us so much, men are not as simple as everyone thinks!!  Add ADD into the mix and there are things that those non-ADD people will never understand, and do not ask us, we might not know why we did them as well!


Wayne

Thanks for your input Wayne.

Thanks for your input Wayne. I think it is obvious (well to me anyway) why this is so important to me. He cheated. Why? Since you admit that you were unfaithful too, then (although you don't like to hear that your wife was unhappy because of you) maybe you were unhappy too and that is what led you to stray? I found out about my husband's affair (that he'd already ended a few weeks prior) when he was scheduled to come home and felt compelled to tell me before he did. That was one thing that helped me have a shred of respect for him. Also, not sure if you've read where I've posted about it, but while we were separated (I asked him to leave when he decided he was never going to be home anyway..I just made it official...ironically, he left but then BEGGED me to let him come home that night...and he was having the affair at the time) it got to the point that he sobbed everytime he would come over to watch the kids. They would tell me that he sat down in the den and just sobbed the entire time he was here. The night he told me he begged to come home...sobbing for hours...begging my forgiveness. He took a pretty bad verbal beating that night from me...and never even fliched. I know he is sorry for what he did...I just wish he could forgive himself. Your story sounds quite similar to his.

I insisted we go to counseling (had already seen 2 different counselors that never really helped) to figure out why he cheated and 'fix' it..or I didn't want to be with him. I trust him a little more each day. He has jumped through every hoop I've put out in front of him to earn my trust back...so don't give up, it can happen. I believe you when you say you're sorry for what you've done and I truly feel in time your wife will believe you too...and forgive you. It just takes time. I found out about the affair Dec 18, 2009...and up until just a few months ago I would panic everytime I was alone in the car...for some reason I would become overwhelmed with feelings..hurt, sadness, mourning my father, mourning my marriage, the ugly mental images of him having sex with this other person, etc. I never told him.

Anyway..just saying I didn't want him to feel bad, but I do not think for one minute he was 'happy'...God forbid he was happy and cheated anyway. He was miserable...he told me so all the time. I even had to listen to his daughter (my step-daughter) tell him how unhappy she knew I made him, why did he come home to me? etc. Your explaination makes perfect sense...it just adds to his guilt. I have guilt too, I wish he'd understand that. I was as responsible for our mess as he was...but I didn't cheat.