Denial

You know when you get little glimpses of awareness that you’ve hit on an idea but can’t quite uncover it? I noticed this has been happening more often for me as I seem to be coming up from complete apathy to less apathy. The smoke clears for a moment, I have a thought, and I try to pursue that thought in the hopes of some personal enlightenment. In the wake of Tony-textacle, something struck me the other day – unrelated to Tony’s infidelity in his marriage – but my x’s behavior in ours. Then I recalled this same thought occurred to me post Bobby.

Strangely enough, I know more about Bobby’s post D-day than Tony’s. I didn’t even realize Tony and Kelly had a D-day in July until last week. Bobby told me everything about his recovery plan post D-day, until he hit the point in recovery that he needed to acknowledge I couldn’t be a part of his life. Tony lied to me for the past 7 months, maybe in an effort to “keep the enemy closer?” Who knows. When I realized Tony had been creating even more lies within his marriage, a little thought bubble popped up to say “do you recall saying he was more like your x than you wanted to admit?” And I got a physical sensation of being ill. It was as if my mind had buried that reminder so deeply that it created a physical sensation as it was dug up again.

Tony did, in his marriage, exactly what my x did to me upon discovery: lied more and denied what actually happened. The next stop on this this reality train is believing that Tony was also lying to me (haven’t fully accepted that yet).  I also repeat: does it even matter?  Nope, not really.   Not my marriage.

I read an article about Hiding in Denial and the flashbacks were not pleasant. When I uncovered my x’s infidelity he turned the entire situation around on me and my need for control. He wasn’t going to give up a female friend. He wasn’t going to allow me to monitor him. He may have crossed a little line, but he was in control and would manage the situation on his own. If he gave up his female friend that meant there was admitting to guilt and he wasn’t guilty. The article went on to describe that until someone admits they have a problem, no changes in outcome would be expected.

“Albert Einstein said, “No problem can be solved by the same consciousness that created it.” Until I can change how I see the problem (and the problem is me, what I’ve done, and what I’m capable of) I will never be safe for my partner. Until I can accept the reality of my own defects of character I’ll never get where I’m going. If the right help is attained, we can find hope as well as a plan to find movement and clarity for both spouses.”

So, while I initially started thinking about Tony, it led me backwards to my own situation with the x, and then further into understanding myself. I have been programmed to accept liars into my life. This has become my defect of character and I allow it to continue by actively looking the other way.  Consistently burying my cues.  I keep accepting a “less-than-I-deserve” behavior in hopes that the other person will change.

Of course, they never do.  And I have become thoroughly practiced in being obstinate about forcing a change, obsessed with their change, instead of gracefully getting up and walking away from their behavior.  I allow some else’ bad behaviors to validate my own bad behavior.

I don’t stop.

With Tony I got the behavior I was seeking from my x. At some point Tony admitted his shame and his ownership for creating the mess we were all in. This was very close to the time he spoke to his wife. I believe that, up until that point, he was as authentic as he could be. He was horrified with himself and his actions and for the further mess he would be creating. I never got that from my x. Not even close. Never even an apology until years later – and it was one of those “I’m sorry if my actions hurt you but I never really cheated” kind of back handed apologies. I think that period of Tony being so genuine is what kept me holding on even longer, he couldn’t be that honest in his marriage so there was hope for us yet (idealized thinking). It wasn’t until his wife told me he was calling me a liar that the truth of it all struck me – he went right back to denial as it was a much more comfortable place to be.  But I shouldn’t have gone with him.  I should not have been around for his mistakes and lies to his family.

I have been holding on to my own denial. The thought that hope exists where it had, in fact, been extinguished 2 years ago in April ’17 when Tony chose to stay in his marriage. I am very good at this since I had a 22 year marriage where I was hopeful for around 18 of those years because I was gaslighted and weak. I keep allowing others, men in particular, to control my life. First my father, then a husband and then two affairs. If I don’t stop trying to control and manage my pain instead of acknowledging and accepting it, to really understand it, I am never going to break this cycle.

(You can go back to re-read the article Ann sent me here, and start to see how that played into what I had already started to think about my habits)

I actually believe that things do happen for a reason. I started to uncover these old perceptions of myself back in this post, and slowly other markers (such as Ann sending me the article) showed up along the way to highlight that I was on the right path to my own little self discovery.

While it may have been the worst way possible to uncover my own truths, sending Tony’s wife the information helped to uncover something I had buried and continue to recreate. I know it will always be viewed as malicious, that I would hurt someone who never hurt me and I understand that point of view. But somewhere in this narrative I needed Tony to accept the truth, my truth I guess, and this felt like the only way I could achieve it. What happens next in his life is his. His anger at me is because of discovery, because I upended that perfect scenario of life he worked so hard to create.  I’m sure some it it is because I hurt Kelly, but the bigger part of it for Tony is because he is uncovered as a serial cheater and liar and loses his prized possession: his outward face as a good and honorable man.  I have to own what I did, it was wrong and I haven’t yet learned how to control this terrible, horrible piece of me that wants others to hurt when I hurt.

Stick with me as I dig deeper, I appreciate all of your insight.

 

Rear view

I wish I had some feeling, any feeling about the text I sent to Tony’s wife.

I have been drained since then, but not in the way I am normally emotionally drained. I haven’t had a period in 60 days now and I had awful cramps early in they day. Maybe this is from the polyps that need to be removed. Some of it is surely from the emotional disturbance but it’s not what I would normally experience.

The drugs are doing their part and, I suppose, I am further into excising him than I thought. I made it so he would never reach out to me again, killed all hope and crushed any reason to think he could remember us with anything except remorse.

I plan to take one more day to myself and then physically change what I’ve been doing. I did it and I’m moving on. She replied succinctly:

“Thank you for your concern for me however I think you need to be more concerned with whatever it is you are going through.

I really don’t need to hear anymore from you about this as I have known about this since last July when you texted me from a random phone number.”

Last July, while very drunk, I forwarded her a profile photo of him on a dating site. I never admitted it to anyone, but of course they had to know it was me.

He claims he told her it was a joke and she didn’t know anything. Based on his response to my text Tuesday, I tend to think her reply was gracious enough to tell me to shut up while pretending she knows more than she did. Or maybe she suspected he was lying. Either way, he did actually tell me he never told her about our affair or he made up a different version.

That’s all the time I am going to spend on it. I did what I say out to do, told her and made him regret ever meeting me.

The emptiness continues, but I’m forcing a change in myself immediately.

I am promising myself, and you, that this is the end of Tony. He is in the rest view mirror and I am moving on. If his wife can take pity on me, I need to take pity on myself.

Void

I realize that the text posts overlapped with my regularly scheduled writing about my resume. That could be confusing to wonder what state of mind I’m in if you were to read the posts in order. The text posts were in real time.

I got so close to *not* sending the text. I wrote a post. I stepped away. And then I just snapped.

The best way I can describe this would be like a metal door Sliding down in front of me, encasing me in a dark windowless, airless room. The room is absent of sound and light. I hit send and went about my way. No thought, no reaction, no remorse.

I went about my evening, admitted my guilt to my bff, and took some sleeping pills. I woke in the same state of apathy. My friend called and told me how disappointed she was and how she needed me to start digging in and doing the work on myself I clearly haven’t done since Mexico.

Thank you for all of your comments and input. I wish I had a better explanation for my actions.

I wish I felt more than I do. My friend said I should be prepared for the worst – for his anger or her anger now directing at me or my family. I don’t know “how” I prepare for what may come (or not).

I slept more than I should have today and just decided to take a mental and physical break. Sit on the couch and think.

Ann once said to me “I need to burn the bridges behind me” and that always stuck with me. I need to load them with gasoline and explosives and toss a match. I leave behind the wreckage that I myself have become. I wish I understood this deep, dark desire to “do unto others” because I acknowledge it’s horrible. This is worse than a child throwing a tantrum.

I haven’t tried prayer and that seems to be the one thing I should try. To pray to a higher power for patience, kindness and forgiveness. For the ability to believe in myself and control my impulsivity. I need to find faith in myself, in a higher power, in anything because I’ve lost my way entirely.

Complete Break from Reality

It’s my own fault. There is a dark, dark part of me – even beyond Trixie’s antics – that comes out.

I sent the text because I was mad at him for blaming me for attacking his marriage. And then he blamed me for attacking his family and it was more than I could bear. I didn’t even know what he was talking about.

Whatever happened and whenever, it’s my fault. I even told him it was my fault so he would calm down. But he kept attacking and spewing hate. I thought just admitting guilt would make a difference. It didn’t.

I popped.

I hit send:

Hello Kelly,

I am sorry in advance for the disruption this text will cause.  

I am writing because I had an affair with your husband for approximately 2 years from 6/16 – 4/18.  

I have tried to avoid contacting you, but have realized I needed to do this for myself. We fell in love and when he decided to stay in your marriage, we were both unable to let go for a time and then, ultimately, I was the one who couldn’t let go. I have been suffering a deep depression which led to harming myself.  

It is up to Tony to honestly explain to you what he’s done throughout your marriage, and who knows about it. Tony will downplay what happened between us because he is so angry with me, but you should be aware of what happened.

I then blocked their numbers and went out.

I’m unsure how he got through, I could see it was blocked but maybe because I didn’t block on iPad as well?

He called me an asshole and a coward (ripe coming from the ultimate coward, eh?)

I don’t feel ANYTHING.

No anger, hatred or relief. Simply nothing at all. Zero.

I wish I felt worse about hurting her. But she was never a real person in my mind so maybe that’s how it worked when I snapped.

It was an entire absence of thought.

I called my bff and admitted the truth and she loved me anyway but I know how disappointed she is.

She said I should prepare for the worst. I admit I didn’t see his crazy anger as coming at me, but now I can see that a threat to his family could cause this.

I hate this emptiness and nothingness. I feel nothing while another family is breaking down due to my hand.

I haven’t learned enough. I don’t have enough compassion or healing despite all I’ve been through. I’m not worthy of anything if I can’t even get letting go right.

I want to feel bad for her (not him) but I feel empty.

Why do I feel the need to create so much drama? Why can’t I let things be?

Struggling

I am struggling right now not to write to Tony’s wife.

I made it worse because I reached out to him to find I was blocked.

I got angrier and angrier until he replied. He claims she got a text and told his kids and now everything is my fault. His life crashing around him is my fault. I haven’t seen him since April and spoken to him in 6/7 weeks.

Now I really just want to write and tell the truth. Fuck him, if I wrote it won’t be some mysterious text.

I am trying very hard right now not to hit send.

I have nothing left to lose and maybe this will just end it for me once and for all.

I Decided – Trixie Post

*Written last week

I made up my mind. I have decided to contact Tony’s wife. I have been reading and reading like crazy so many opinions about do/don’t contact and why.

And I finally decided I am never going to be at peace until she hears the truth. I asked him many months ago, before I had my breakdown, to tell her. He promised he would. This was the only way I could avoid having this obsessive need to tell her myself.

He didn’t.

Here’s my email to her:

Hello Kelly,
I am sorry in advance for the disruption this email will cause.  
I am writing because I had an affair with your husband for approximately 2 years from 6/16 – 4/18.  
I have tried to avoid contacting you, but have realized I needed to do this for myself. We fell in love and when he decided to stay in your marriage, we were both unable to let go for a time and then, ultimately, I was the one who couldn’t let go. I have been suffering a deep depression which led to harming myself.  
I needed to finally stop hoping one day he might change his mind and just give you the facts about Tony.  
It is up to Tony to honestly explain to you what he’s done throughout your marriage, and who knows about it. I can provide any proof you need from me but thought keeping this email to the point was best.   
Madeline

If you are curious what changed my mind it was this website:

https://www.infidelityhelpgroup.com/2016/10/05/should-i-tell-his-wife/

And a website called Chump Lady.

*written today

I guess I hadn’t decided because something is stopping me from sending it – and believe me that send button has been under my thumb more than once this week.

I’m just sitting on it. Perhaps the feeling will pass. Perhaps it won’t.

I realize there is no gain from this text to his wife. I try to keep mulling over in my head why I feel so strongly about outing him. I know part of it stems from pure rage that he gets to live his life free and clear after 20 years of continued cheating and the wreckage he left of me.

Then I think: who cares.

If I could surgically remove these thoughts and feelings of him I would opt to at this point. I would even go back to Mexico! (Not ever!)