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Author Topic: My Story “As much as you burn me, baby, I should be ashes by now.”

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That sure is a lot of processing HT.

Thank you for sharing it  :)

-SS
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W - 40
M - 44
Together 25 years, M 23
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019
Start of Shadow - Feb 2012

s
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I participated in my life, made the decisions I needed to make, & am very grateful for the life I now have. scheme). I have “moved on”--it would be nearly unbearable to remain in the physical, mental, & emotional turmoil of post-BD. But I am not “over it”, nor will I ever be.
 
Well, HT, I'm just beginning year 6 so a bit behind you on the timeline but you have done a marvelous job in summing up my feelings with the above statements. 

Bad things happen to us all; if we are lucky many more good things happen along the way. Life is not fair. One of those bad, unfair things may be that our spouse falls into a MLC. The one we love may find his love for us distorted by depression & delusions & an addiction to an amoral alienator. Such is life. I’ll take my joy where I can find it & I do find it. We must!

Again, written as though you could read my mind!

HT -- good to have an update from you.  Thanks for the share. 
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BD: 1/1/16
Together 15 years - married 7 years
His divorce final 7/26/16
Married the OW

After all, tomorrow is another day.

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I rarely return to the site, but thank you to all who replied to my anniversary of BD post in January. I guess it's become a ritual, lol.

This post documents my process on a recent e-mail from my H (actually X, but I never call him that unless it would cause confusion). He contacted me because our oldest son (38) does not respond to his calls or texts. He was hit very hard by his father's actions & has not concocted a way to be social & distant with his dad like my younger son has.

My son lives with me & has struggled for the last couple of years with a combination of depression, some drug use, & shady companions, including a toxic romantic relationship. Recently he has ended his relationship, & is stable enough to have gotten his job back. His dad asked me to "tell him I love him...and would love to see him".

I was traveling & took several days to think about & craft a reply:
"From the beginning I told the boys that you were still their father; that I did not want to be a barrier to their relationships with you. But broken hearts heal slowly & at their own rate.

I cannot convey messages from you for a couple of reasons. G is on a better path now, but he doesn’t need another “should” coming from me. I wouldn’t be telling him what to do, but just the message coming from me would imply that he “should” contact you. When he feels strong enough & ready to communicate with you, he will.

The other reason is more personal. I am no longer your advocate—it’s not part of my role anymore. Me transmitting your message implies that I think that is what G should do. It’s no longer my role to encourage his relationship with you. You’re on your own here. I can’t fix it for you."

Some of the notes I had jotted down edged toward blaming, the words "you reap what you sow" came to mind. I do feel sorry for my H; I reminded him years ago that he was giving up a lot. He just never processed what any of the consequences of his actions would be. As my counselor often reminded me, addicts will give up everything without a thought & to my counselor, his MLC R was a drug he was using to quell his "unhappiness".

My life is going well, but the past is not really past & I doubt it ever will be. H's rare contacts are no longer painful; mostly they are puzzling & cause me to review my boundaries with him & to come up with replies that are not unkind, but still hold him to account.
 
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Detach and Survive: A Book of Self-Care for the Wives of Midlife Crisis Men
The Journey from Abandonment to Healing, Susan Anderson
Healing the Shame that Binds You, John Bradshaw
The Addictive Personality, Craig Nakken
https://www.midlifecrisismarriageadvocate.com/chapter-contents.html

M'ed 41 years
BD-Jan 2013
Legally separated Feb 2013
D'ed without my consent July 2015
H M'ed OW Sept 2015

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Big hugs, HT. Your response is beyond reasonable, in its own way very compassionate (not just to you and your son, but your H). It's what healthy people do - show integrity. Whether he'll be able to process it is of course another matter, but certainly there's good info imparted to him.
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T
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Heart t-
Your response was utter perfection. It honestly could not of had more compassion and reasoning for your son and your XH. Those notes you jotted down still came through, but in a classy intelligent way. Your children are so lucky to have you as a parent and your XH lost a great soulmate due to his crisis.

I have had many conversations with my XH on keeping in touch with his kids. That the more distance the harder to close the gap. He was a great Dad until he wasn’t and the only things that keeps him away is his own shame. What a sad thing for these MCR’s. They lose more than their morals, integrity and families. They really lose the future that the family they created deserved as did they.

Thank you for sharing. I think these words from you will stick in me and I can see them coming out years from now if that sad day comes.
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H-54 W-58  M 7/6/91 Kids d-30 s-28 d-14 (dies 2009)
2013- moments of disconnect start
Aug 2016 promotion requires travel   
Oct 2017-total disconnect
Jan 2018- moved out H
Mar 2018- BD1 found old phone 3 EA ‘17-H in therapy
EA ow1-49,  EA-ow2 57, (EA- ow3-58 not reciprocated)
Sept ‘18 -2nd Home in new state H new job
Oct 2018-H moves home
Oct 2020 BD2 does not return home from B trip
Nov 2020 H move to 2nd home in other state OW4
Div filed-Dec ‘20   Div final-Feb ‘21
Oct 2021- XH moves in OW4
https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=11796.

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What a very honest, balanced and appropriate response that was, HT. And a great example imho of what putting the needs of our kids first looks like, of respecting them above being concerned about our ex/spouses feelings or wishes.
And how very strange, after so many years, that your xh should think it appropriate to ask you to relay any message at all to an adult child on his behalf. There is something almost infantile about an adult who hurts people so much yet expects to be loved and accepted regardless and without acting to acknowledge the hurt they caused.
Good news though that your son may be on the path to recovering from his own troubles and I hope that continues.
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T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

S
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I was traveling & took several days to think about & craft a reply:

This is what is so important to learn.

Crafted, detached and carefully worded responses are the way forward for any LBS.  My therapist once said, If it takes 3 days to write an important email or text then it takes 3 days.......

Your response, HT, was fab.

I am glad that your  younger S is back on his way to the S you knew.  I am there with my 24yr old S and it's a slow process.

I also see similarities in your older S's decisions.  Sadly I think that may end up being the same for my S and H even if H and I were to reconcile. It's hard to see and witness as a mother because  it's not what we hoped for when our children were born.
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BD march 2013
Stay at home MLCer
OW for 3.5 years - finishing Autumn 2016
Reconnection started 2017 and still going with no sign of reconciliation.

T
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What a beautifully crafted response -- I think it was exactly right.  I will remember that!

My young adult children as well don't really have a relationship with my former H; one son sees him occasionally but says that he isn't a father at all, but he still desperately wants his approval, and meets him every now and again hoping for something that isn't there.  He may be doing as you describe your younger son doing, concocting a way to be social and distant.  Time will tell if he keeps that up.  The other two just ignore, as far as I can tell.  It hurts my daughter in particular horribly.  It's sad. 

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My life is going well, but the past is not really past & I doubt it ever will be. H's rare contacts are no longer painful; mostly they are puzzling & cause me to review my boundaries with him & to come up with replies that are not unkind, but still hold him to account.

That resonated with me, particularly the bit about the past not being completely past.  I think having children means that some bit is always there. 

Lovely to hear from you, thank you for updating!
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He was a great Dad until he wasn’t and the only things that keeps him away is his own shame.
Same. And the greatest thing was his example of honesty & integrity. That is what has hurt & baffled our boys so much. Along with me they cannot fathom how this all happened. I have learned that MLC is a very powerful disorder & seems to override some people's sense of decency. I intellectually understand the process, but still have a hard time accepting it.

...how very strange, after so many years, that your xh should think it appropriate to ask you to relay any message at all to an adult child on his behalf. There is something almost infantile about an adult who hurts people so much yet expects to be loved and accepted regardless and without acting to acknowledge the hurt they caused.
It is strange, especially since we communicate so rarely. I believe that when he thinks about G it makes him feel bad & he doesn't want to feel bad--that's what his infidelity & the adoration of the OW "fixed" for him--the "bad" feelings of MLC. I wonder how that's going now  ::)  Now he wants me to "fix" this unhappiness of a son who shuns him.

He responded right away to my message & suprisingly didn't bristle at the truth darts I aimed his way. His response "Thank you for letting me know that he is on a better path. I'm sure even this morsel wasn't easy for you." I'm not sure what his second sentence meant. I have told him I cannot discuss G's situation with him because of my son's wishes, but he seems to imply that I have a need to withhold information from him. Not going to over-analyze it. I've learned that lesson. Nothing an MLCer says or does makes sense to a "normal" person.

Thanks for all of your replies & support throughout this crazy turn in our lives.
HT
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Detach and Survive: A Book of Self-Care for the Wives of Midlife Crisis Men
The Journey from Abandonment to Healing, Susan Anderson
Healing the Shame that Binds You, John Bradshaw
The Addictive Personality, Craig Nakken
https://www.midlifecrisismarriageadvocate.com/chapter-contents.html

M'ed 41 years
BD-Jan 2013
Legally separated Feb 2013
D'ed without my consent July 2015
H M'ed OW Sept 2015

 

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