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Author Topic: My Story Reconnecting Intrusive thoughts

S
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My Story Reconnecting Intrusive thoughts
OP: December 11, 2019, 07:42:05 AM
For those members whose marriages have survived MLC with affairs, is it normal to have intrusive thoughts or flashbacks and trust issues for years.  My husband has been back home three years this month.  I worry I don’t have closure.  Is this normal?  Thanks!
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Jesus looked at them and said, "For human beings this is impossible, but for God all things are possible."  Matthew 19:26

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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#1: December 11, 2019, 08:22:06 AM
Hey!!! It's my awesomely named friend  :P

I can't say from direct experience, but I do know the "standard" amount of time to get over an A is two years.
Since MLC is so much larger than "just" an A..... three years isn't unreasonable to me for starting to improve.

How is it different to you now (three years) as opposed to when he first cam back? Or after the 1st year back?

My SIL had her H go thru MLC and it involved A's also...... went on for years and years (7 if I remember correctly).
H has been much better and more mature, and each day it's slightly better than the last from what she says..... but she says it also hasn't totally gone away. I can't say for sure how many years it's been since he came out (so hazy since there was the really bad years and then they just quietly got better.... slowly).

-SS
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W - 40
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Together 25 years, M 22
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BD - 27th April 2019

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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#2: December 11, 2019, 08:41:41 AM
I think that at some point, if the person comes home, you need a closure point or a lay the cards on the table point. My fear would be it'd be all let's get back to our old routine and never say anything about it again. I think there's work that needs to be done, counseling that needs to be gone to and so on.

There's a time and place for that though and you need to judge on your own if your H is sincere about his efforts to return. However, I also think the both of you (or anyone) should heal. It shouldn't be about them owing you something or you holding not getting closure over their head. To healthy move forward, it needs to be a joint effort. I'd say that's how everyone ended up in these situations is because they both had stuff they weren't dealing with either alone or together.
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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#3: December 11, 2019, 08:49:06 AM
For those members whose marriages have survived MLC with affairs, is it normal to have intrusive thoughts or flashbacks and trust issues for years.  My husband has been back home three years this month.  I worry I don’t have closure.  Is this normal?  Thanks!

Its been 4 years and I still have them. I think it just comes with the territory. The difference is that I don't bring it up to H unless he is doing something that really, really triggers me. And even then, I do it in a kind and gentle way. I don't think you can move forward and build trust if you are going to hold it over the MLC'rs head forever......

That being said, I'm in individual counseling in order to deal with the PTSD,  intrusive thoughts, flashbacks and trust issues!  ;D It has been helping a lot. It has given me back some of my power and confidence.

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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#4: December 11, 2019, 08:49:58 AM
Do you notice if there are any patterns to it? Or particular triggers? Is it more linked to your h's current behaviour or does it feel more solely about the past? About him or you? And what kind of emotions do the thoughts or flashbacks produce?

No need to answer any of that here...
Just occurs to me that 'mapping' it a bit might help you get a sense of what it is about and the best way to tackle it.
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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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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#5: December 11, 2019, 09:09:36 AM
Hello there my name twin! 

Oh gosh, things are way better with our relationship than when he first came home.  Better than before MLC.  Your SIL’s comments sound exactly like me.  Like so many stories on this site, it sounds like you are talking about me! 

 At first, he still had a lot of anger.  He was still in contact with the ow for a while, still considered her his “friend.”    That did not get better until he had individual therapy for 6 months and we got couples counseling another 6 months after that.    So, I’d say the last couple of years have been really fun to be together again. He’s much more like the man I first met in college in the early 90’s.  He’s kind, funny, loving, and much more mature.  He has done a ton to help himself, with Prayer, diet, much less drinking (ow encouraged drinking) therapy, medication, meditation, and even neurofeedback.  he actually learned from an EEG all the lasting effects of sports related concussions in his youth that could be helped with neurofeedback.  I have wondered if concussions can increase risk for MLC.  He knew something was wrong with him, and he wanted to fix it.  He was Dx’ed with Major Depressive Disorder and ADD, like most of his family.  🤔

So, I agree with your SIL, it gets better every day. I feel good about our relationship.  It helps for me to rehash all of that to put things in perspective.  I am just bothered that I still have triggers.  Guess that will just take time.

Thank you!

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Jesus looked at them and said, "For human beings this is impossible, but for God all things are possible."  Matthew 19:26

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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#6: December 11, 2019, 09:13:44 AM
Do you notice if there are any patterns to it? Not really, it can come out of the blue Or particular triggers? It can be a word, a place, a song, a phrase....Is it more linked to your h's current behaviour or does it feel more solely about the past? The past. About him or you? And what kind of emotions do the thoughts or flashbacks produce?I think that goes without saying, remember bomb drop?

No need to answer any of that here...
Just occurs to me that 'mapping' it a bit might help you get a sense of what it is about and the best way to tackle it. My counselor is doing a good job with that  ;)
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S
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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#7: December 11, 2019, 09:17:35 AM
Gosh, you all have great points to consider!  Thank you for your input.  We have both come a long way.  I was in therapy for like all the years through the crisis.  I feel we have both swept our sides of the street.  Mine was anxiety primarily.  But it is astoundingly better! 

I think it’s mostly about past events that make me feel uneasy.  But he does occasionally run into the ow at work.  That makes me uncomfortable, but  that will improve when we retire and move back south this summer.   I kinda think it’s sort of like mourning the death of a loved one.  The emotional triggers eventually fade.  I still occasionally cry for my dad who passed away 4 years ago, and my baby that died 18 years ago. 
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« Last Edit: December 11, 2019, 09:22:50 AM by Standingstrong1 »
Jesus looked at them and said, "For human beings this is impossible, but for God all things are possible."  Matthew 19:26

A
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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#8: December 11, 2019, 09:42:31 AM
I still occasionally cry for my dad who passed away 4 years ago, and my baby that died 18 years ago.

I wonder if it helps to frame the triggers related to MLC shenanigans as a part and parcel of your life, such as the examples you have given above, rather than putting it in a special basket, labelled in thick red marker, ‘LOOK!  MLC goodies’.   

I’m only saying this because it helped me tremendously to consciously remove the special status I had granted myself (yes, it’s all in MY head, not H’s) to MLC related wounds.  I do realize the betrayal of one I trusted implicitly was the most painful experience I’ve ever had.  However, it is true that one cannot change the past but he/she can remodel how he/she views and reacts to it.  Yes, it’s hard work...  Lots of thought-shaping and walking toward ‘It’s life. Let’s move on.’  I’m a work in progress in this aspect.  I’d imagine I would be endeavouring to do the same had we separated or divorced. 

Just my 2 cents’ worth.  :)

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« Last Edit: December 11, 2019, 10:16:41 AM by Acorn »
My first thread:  https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=8164.150

My reconnecting thread:  https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=10524.msg699615#msg699615

Live-in MLCer

Feb 2015: BD. 
Oct 2015: ILYBINILWY.
Apr 2016: Affair discovered
Dec 2017: Seriously reconnecting

S
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Re: Intrusive thoughts
#9: December 11, 2019, 10:07:25 AM
That is a very thoughtful and helpful perspective Acorn!
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Jesus looked at them and said, "For human beings this is impossible, but for God all things are possible."  Matthew 19:26

 

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