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Author Topic: My Story Rebuilding Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC

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My Story Rebuilding Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#20: October 19, 2020, 01:23:15 PM


What you posted today spoke to me a lot, particularly where you describe the Dramatic Individuation Process and the role of FOO issues.   

One aspect is his relationship with others.  It’s fundamentally changed; so much so that I wonder at the fact that we actually reconciled.

This part intrigued me.  Would you care to elaborate on why you wonder how you could actually reconcile?
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January 2018 - 1st BD - "I'm not happy"
June 2019 - I discover existence of OW since November  2017. Lives on another continent
July 2019 - OW moves to live in my city.
August 2019 - H on holiday with OW, despite ultimatum
September 2019 - H commits to leaving OW
November 2019 - OW moves back to her country (temporarily). Reconnection with me begins but contact with OW continues.
January 2020 - H informs me he has broken up with OW. Continues seeing her anyway.
April-June 2020 - H moves home. While "rebuilding", H continues contact and some PA with OW (BD2).
July 2020 - H leaves home, fence-sits.
Aug 2020 - H plays heavy pingpong, then announces he will rent a place with OW "at least temporarily"
Aug 2020 - I decided enough is enough. Filing for D.

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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#21: October 19, 2020, 03:51:53 PM
Hello,

I am so glad that you brought this up. Many times we speak of Mid-life crisis. However that relates to age and not to the core issue of disintegration of one's identity. The crisis is tied to loss of identity or self. The inability to understand one's own actions, purpose, or even thought process.

We all question our purpose and design, but the crisis breaks when someone feels, I don't want to be who I am, I want to be someone else.  This disassociation with reality. To suddenly seek new by revisiting the past would be more embraced and accepted by professionals then a mere "it's a mid-life crisis". One focus's on true description of the crisis the latter sounds like an idea for a movie.

While Erickson's work on identity and identity crisis focused on adolescence, the idea of loss of identity leading to a period of confusion holds even for adults. The idea of questioning all aspects of their life particularly their marriage, work, and even children is not exclusive to those in their forties or fifties and can happen throughout one's life.

Very interesting points and I look forward to reading more of your posts.

(((((Ready)))))
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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#22: October 20, 2020, 07:05:10 AM
Thank you LL, Tinnat and Ready for your comments!

Tinnat,

H nuked his relationship with me, our children, his parents, siblings, friends and the community.  So, yes, his relationship with important people in his life was fundamentally changed; as in, the DNA of the relationship got fried.  How do you come back from that?  It’s more logical to leave all that charred remains behind.

Specifically about our marital relationship:

His emotional abandonment of me and his affair completely destroyed our marital relationship.  I mean 100% destroyed.  Innocence and trust, gone.  It is not possible to resurrect the relationship of pre-BD.  It’s gone.  Kaput.  Obliterated.  A sample of one.

H was able to reclaim his beliefs and values as his very own through the crisis process.  Mind you, he is not so black and white any longer.  His grey areas have expanded considerably.  Fundamentally the same, yet different in details.

He was able to retrieve most of his old personality as well.  As a person, he is similar to who he used to be before BD, albeit wiser, gentler, and more mature and peaceful.  Fundamentally the same, yet different in details, as above.

But relationship is a totally different beast.  Relationship is not a frozen-in-time concept that you can reclaim and carry on.  It is altered, sometimes unrecognizably, by the choices humans make.  Even without any adverse events, it evolves with time.

After all that had gone on, including a period where he did not love me at all but despised me and then became indifferent, it is a wonder of wonders that both of us came to the same conclusion to reconcile. 

The following may explain why we both wanted to reconcile. 

1. He worked on his FOO issues and then went on to define his identity.  Simply put, he wasn’t messed up any longer.

2. We share similar values and attitude toward life after all the tribulations of MLC and LBSC.  We are compatible, too, emotional age-wise.

3. We each processed what his choices had done to our marriage and how I reacted; we accepted the reality of destruction they caused; consistent actions of remorse, forgiveness and compassion did their thing, and here we are. 

4. He remembered that he loved me for decades and he loves me again after a period of break from it. Having some emotional connection or a soft spot for me because of the the shared history, or feeling duty-bound to honour promises made, were good enough for the initial tentative reconnection, and I was willing.  However, we had to love each other deeply for reconciliation to become a possibility.  I see that now. 

5. If one of us still clung to how things were between us before his crisis and wanted to go back to that — which is quite immature and a delusional thing to do — we would not have reconciled.   We would have been incompatible.

6. The most crucial aspect our reconciliation is that he did not leave. If he had, that would have been a bridge too far.  For us, that is. 

.........

Ready,

I can see how some people may experience loss of identity, as you mentioned. 

For my H, it was more a case of questioning the authenticity of his identity. The questions he asked were: Does he truly own it?  Or, did he merely mould himself to what his parents and our society dictated? 

He did not wish to be someone else.  That idea never occurred to him.  He just wanted to be authentic Mr. Acorn. 

I guess losing identity, wanting to be someone else, and wanting to define one’s own identity, do fit under the umbrella of ‘identity crisis.’ 

Throw in an existential crisis which is related to his identity conundrum, H had a tornado within his soul. 

The ‘script’ we often talk about here hardly scratches the surface of what it means to be in midlife crisis. To primarily focus on the ‘script’ to deem someone a ‘MLCer’ is akin to the frivolity of Hollywood rendition of MLC.  I thank you for taking MLC seriously, Ready.
 
Let’s face it, a bit of googling on infidelity will show that the ‘script’ and expressing hesitation before making the leap seem to be on the menu for cheaters in general, MLC or not.  So, MLCers and the garden-variety cheaters cannot be differentiated by the script, in my opinion — a bit like, coughing does not mean you have covid 19.  It goes so much deeper than the visible symptoms of the ‘script’ and the out of character things they do.  A person in crisis has a deep fracture in their core in just about every aspect of life that involves even a little bit of emotion. 

Just my view. A sample of one.  :)
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« Last Edit: October 20, 2020, 07:22:51 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

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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#23: October 20, 2020, 05:20:28 PM
Still following along Acorn - Thank you for sharing and your openness.

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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#24: October 21, 2020, 01:27:14 AM
Thank you for sharing your 'sample of one' perspective with the gift of time and distance, Acorn. More of us doing that here do so from a POV of LBS recovery or post-divorce life, so it is useful to have a different perspective and other information about an MLCer than some of us have.

I do agree that my xh blew our marriage up completely at BD and perhaps even more so post-BD. Obliterated as you say. Looking back, I think it took me a couple of years to really 'get' that which seems silly now. But it did. I suspect our relationship lived on in my head for much longer than it lived on in my then h's head. But perhaps that is just how grief and mourning work sometimes.....

Looking at your list, I have no idea if my xh is now a more or less authentic self than he was before but how you describe it makes sense. It is remarkable really that there are any healthy reconciliations at all, it seems to me, given the complexity of all the moving parts  :)

But, again looking at your list, my experience - from what was available for me to see - had none of these things. I don't know why it didn't, but it didn't, and in a strange way that makes me feel better somehow that reconciliation just wasn't in the mix of possibilities. I don't think I ever felt even once after BD that my h had any memory of ever having loved me before or any soft spot towards me at all....whereas for a while I couldn't unremember it so I got lost searching for something suddenly missing to the point of being consumed by it perhaps ::) It was tremendously painful to push myself to accept that, based on the reality I could see, my then h simply did not care what I thought or felt about anything at all and did not care what happened to me. At best, he was indifferent....which isn't a great kind of reality in any human interaction is it?  ??? But it did make it easier to stop trying to communicate with him  :)

Which was all my sample of one lol.
Albeit a sample without the voice of my xh so I have no idea what he might have said if he had ever spoken about any of it as your h evidently with time has done.
But it is good to have different samples of one here, bc there are different routes forward.

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« Last Edit: October 21, 2020, 01:58:26 AM by Treasur »
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

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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#25: October 27, 2020, 02:59:09 PM
Sea and Treasur, thank you very much for reading and commenting on this thread. 

Yes, Treasur, all we can do is to share our sample of one.  Our individual stories contribute to the big picture so, each story plays a role. 

...........

I have (too) many inspiring quotes I used to read aloud to myself in order to live that particular day meaningfully, rather than stay marinated in despondency and self pity during my early days as LBS. 

I have deleted many of them but the following quote is a keeper.  I can’t even begin to tell you how much it helped me.  Ruminating on the past is one of the most insidious way to sabotage TODAY.  Yeah, speaking from personal experience. 


“Forget yesterday - it has already forgotten you.

Don't sweat tomorrow - you haven't even met.

Instead, open your eyes and your heart to a truly precious gift - today.”


- Steve Maraboli, behavioural scientist and writer




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« Last Edit: October 27, 2020, 03:16:26 PM 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

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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#26: October 29, 2020, 07:22:24 AM
Over the last few months, I have received some questions regarding our reconciliation.  The most common questions are:

- What were the major differences you saw between reconnection and reconciliation?

- What had to take place during reconnection before reconciliation was possible?

- How long did you reconnect before reconciliation?

(I am more than willing to share my experiences which is but one anecdote, even an anomaly...

Reconciling after a garden variety affair is difficult enough.  Throw in MLC and all the issues that caused it, it is hard to believe that reconciliation is even possible.  H and I are well aware of this and view our reconciliation as an amazing blessing and a miracle, and we are truly humbled by it.) 

Much of the following is in hindsight.  There are some aspects of reconnection and reconciliation which were not visible to me while it was happening — one of the reasons I continue to record my journey.

Our reconnection was about finding out whether we were compatible enough after all the crisis hullabaloos and if there was any love and desire to spend the rest of our lives together. 

The tools of reconnecting process were interaction and communication, with more focus on hearing than speaking. I think respectful and non-aggressive communication worked very well for us because of our temperament.

The end of MLC and LBSC could have placed us at opposite poles in how we view the world, spiritual matters, values, interests, relationships, and other key aspects of life.  Verbal communication and the way we individually lived each day amply revealed our views on those aspects, and it was clear to both of us that we belonged to the same tribe, so to speak.   I am most amazed and thankful for this outcome.

For us, reconciliation was about each person’s determination to consolidate and increase love and commitment to each other.  The seed was sown during reconnection where we deeply heard and learned about each other anew. There was plenty of material (reconnecting experience) on which to base our confidence in each other’s positive outlook on our relationship.

That answers the first 2 questions, I hope. 

I can’t say how long our reconnection lasted.  We started to seriously reconnect in Dec 2017.  A few months ago, I realized we had been reconciled for some time.  It’s the peace.  It’s the quiet love that’s palpable whenever we interact.  It’s the thoughtfulness for each other that comes as a matter of course.  We have each other’s back instinctively.  I saw that my trust in H is the standard mode again.  All of this had come without any fanfare.  I did not see it arrive.  It just was. 

One important aspect of our R&R is that we did not measure, analyze, or put labels on any part of the process.  We just went with the flow.  It helped that we had a conversation sometime during reconnection and agreed that healing would take time and we will let it happen without pushing it.  From then on, ‘it’s going to take time’ became our unofficial motto for moving forward.

Wishing you all a wonderful day!
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« Last Edit: October 29, 2020, 07:32:58 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

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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#27: October 29, 2020, 08:34:02 AM
Acorn, speaking of your post about Dramatic Individuation Process.  That seems to hit the nail for my h.  He just told me he didn’t know who he was before.  Now he knows what he wants.  He wants to meet tonight to speak about who he is now and what he wants from life.

Of course still all about him, but I guess progress nonetheless.
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Married 20 years
Husband is 43
Me-40
4 kids 6-15 years old

BD-October 2018-ILYBNIL, wants a divorce, this after I found out about OW 1(EA), OW2(PA) no longer together.  I believe he is single. 
April 2019 He got an apartment and moved out.
Oct 2019-Apologized for a years worth of monster behavior.  Still wants to start divorce this Spring, is distant, but friendly.  Tries more with kids, but mostly just helps haul them around(superficial).
Spring 2019 H agreed to put off the divorce another school year to keep the kids and I from moving back to TX.
2020-He has continued to help out when asked and be polite.  I do think he questions his choices at times.  I do not believe he has OW.
Oct 30 2020-He wants to get back together.  I am unsure.

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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#28: October 29, 2020, 09:00:39 AM
Thanks...as always, Acorn, you highlight some of the most important lessons of this process. I feel like one of the most significant things I have learned is that you are only going to recognize reconnection (and it seems the same applies to reconciliation) in hindsight. Which I guess goes along with the mantra of “no expectations.” When my W spends more time here or makes overtures toward the two of us going out together, when she shares things with me about what she is doing or learning, when she is interested in me and what I am doing...at first, every single gesture on her part felt to me like it was a start toward reconnection - because she said she did want to be connected to me but she needed to figure out herself first. So every gesture felt like a new beginning...and then she cycled back and I was disappointed and hurt and angry. But over time, I have learned that I can appreciate the positive interactions in the moment, take them at face value, and continue to keep my expectations at zero - avoiding those negative emotions and therefore staying on my own path.

I am still learning and don’t always apply these lessons perfectly. But I can’t tell you how much I appreciate reading of your experience. Even knowing it’s not meant to be advice, just your personal experience, it does help to know that there is the potential for reconnection, but most importantly personal happiness, on the path of “no expectations.”
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Rebuilding after Hurricane MLC
#29: October 31, 2020, 11:38:26 AM
Thank you FJ and LL! 

FJ, I sincerely hope he was able to define his identity.  That means he is emotionally mature and will not confuse ‘identity’ with having a ‘I want’ list.

Yes, LL, I’m just recording my personal experience. 

There is good reason why I repeat ‘sample of one’ in most of my posts.  I do not wish to mislead others in any way that my situation is the norm.  If anything, it is more like a case at the edge of standard deviation. 

So, forgive me if I am rather insistent on ‘sample of one.’
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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

 

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