Her Stats vs Mine

My husbands girlfriend has worked out some statistics regarding my husband and when he chooses to be in their relationship and when he doesn’t. Now it’s December and she has prepared to sit back and wait for January to roll around, when he will have felt bad for ignoring her through the holidays and he will reconnect with her. I wrote her an email laying out my own set of statistics, outlining things I have learned about him since this all started. He tells me that he’s done that this won’t happen anymore, that he wants our marriage more than he wants to be with her. I can’t bring myself to send the email though. I feel like I’m being too harsh with her, but I just want her to go away. I don’t feel my contact with her will make her go away though. She figures her youth is on her side and she can patiently wait as long as she needs to, because according to her statistics, he will be back. Seeing as he is still talking to her and hasn’t been forceful or direct enough in communicating to her what he wants, she could be right.

Marjorie, this is what I know.
D told me about your statistics for his interaction with you during this time of year. Statistically he drops out on you to focus on his family during the holidays. Only he hasn’t really been with us for many of our holidays, because you were always in the background with some crisis or another. 
“Statistically” this is what I know about infidelity. I’ve read just about everything I can trying to find answers because I want to know that I’m doing the right thing for our family. I find it is somewhat helpful to know that there are other people in similar situations and they are also trying to make their marriages work.
I know that he has dropped out on me about every six months, for the last two years, to be with you for a week. I know that even though he does drop out, he always comes home and attempts to repair the hurt that he has caused. 
I know that the propensity for men/women to cheat is genetically predetermined. D grew up knowing his father continually cheated on his mother and to this day continues to do so. I have nothing to do with him. D’s dad told our son that D’s affair was okay, he just shouldn’t have gotten caught. He also covered for D numerous times so that he could go and be with you, basically telling me that it was okay his son had no respect for me or our marriage. His mother continues to maintain a close relationship with his first affair leaving me to believe she would have preferred to see our marriage end as well.
I also know that once you crossed over into the reality side of his life, his desire to be with you drastically lessened. Same thing happened with the first affair. They made a deal that it was purely sexual but she changed it up and when she wanted more, he wanted less. He didn’t want another wife or someone to take care of him, he wanted an escape here and there a couple of times a year, to go away from his real life and be someone else. Is that healthy? No, I don’t believe that it is. 
80% of married men do not leave their wives for the woman they are cheating on them with and if they do that relationship doesn’t generally last. Their wives end up leaving them because they get tired of being lied to and the bullshit that is constantly being brought into their lives.
78% of married couples who encounter infidelity remain married. They remain married either because the husband/wife honestly makes the effort to repair the marriage because he/she loves their spouse, or he/she stays with their spouse because of a feeling of attachment. He/she cannot see their life without the spouse, and feels he/she needs them.
58% of men who cheat are happily married. I believed we were happily married until D listened to another woman tell him how unhappy she was in her marriage and how could he possibly be happy with me? He asked her for advice regarding my relationship with his parents, and she used it to her own advantage. He let someone inside our bubble. I’ve always believed that you do not talk about your husband or wife to anyone. We were happily married until I found out what was really going on.
I am constantly waiting for the next time that D will drop out on me, this time he assures me he will not. The longer he continues to talk, text and have any interaction with you, he is one step closer to that drop out. It doesn’t necessarily mean the relationship with you is what he wants, it’s just his mean of an escape. An escape that I’m no longer willing to forgive.
 I knew about you. Last June, when D asked me if he could have a week, to go to Georgia and break up with you face to face, I let him. He promised after that, all communication would end. I believed he would end it. He let it continue and he is still letting it continue. One of the conditions for coming home was that he was to end all contact with you and thus far he has not. I have told him in January if he cannot start the new year fresh, and have no contact at all then he will have to leave. He has said to me, he needs to end things in his own time, and I’ve said no, because I’ve had enough of this bullshit, and given him so much more time and patience than he deserves. I need to move forward in my life and stop living with the last two years dragging me down.

I used to believe that if this was to ever happen to us that I would not stay with him. Unfortunately, you have no idea what you will do until you are actually face to face and having to live with your husband cheating on you, do you know what you will actually do. I always thought I was stronger than this, I hate that I am conveying to our daughter that it’s okay for your husband to cheat on you and as well allowing D to convey to our son that it’s okay to cheat on your wife. Neither is okay. I compromised my morals/beliefs and stayed because I cannot quit loving him or even begin to start dismantling 25 years of a life together. If he allowed me space and time, eventually I would move on but right now he tells me, our marriage is what he wants, I want to believe in him. 
Do you realize what it is you are trying to do? You are trying to put an end to a family. You said you would never have participated in such a relationship before, so what has changed? He’s still married, and trying to make things right. He is trying to repair our relationship. I kind of get the impression that you feel that the cracks in our marriage are my fault, which is why you are continuing to push him to leave me. They are not my fault. I did not go outside of our marriage for any reason. Had I met someone else, I would have told D. All I wanted was honesty at all cost. If he met someone else that he wanted to be with, then all he had to do was say so and we could work out the details. Why didn’t D just tell me you were living here now and that our relationship was over? I think his hiding his relationships tells me that he was never going to permanently leave because he could never be happy, knowing that the kids and I would eventually start over with someone new. 

I am sad for you, and have been since I first found out about him lying to you. I know how that feels. I regret not reaching out to you in when I found your phone number, after I found out about his true relationship with you. Maybe I could have saved you and me from this situation. I think no matter what I said in my text to you though, you would have still believed anything he told you. I was sad that you spent Thanksgiving alone, and now will be spending Christmas alone, instead of with your family. I hope that you’ve made some friends here that will invite you to join in their Christmas Eve or day so that you are not alone. Holidays are meant for family.
This email was just to let you know, I have my own set of statistics when it comes to D and I’m just hoping that I can believe him when he says, he’s done being someone else and with someone else. It was also not intended to hurt or upset you, but maybe help you to see the bigger “statistical” picture. 

S

Maybe she’ll see that my 25 years of trying to work through the hard stuff isn’t shadowed at all by the four years he’s spent talking, texting and a week of sex every six months or so and maybe she won’t.

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Playing in the Sand

My last afternoon with Ann, I played in the sand. She asked if I would like to try something new. Sure. Right now, I feel pretty open to trying anything if it will make me feel better. 

She brought out the tray filled with sand and opened a chest full of figures, animals and other things. She asked me to describe the feeling of the sand, told me to take some time and chose characters or things out of the chest that represented people or things in my life. It felt like a test. What should I chose? I had no idea where to begin until I spotted the Cowardly Lion from The Wizard of Oz. From there I found Dorothy, the Tin Man, the Scarecrow, Glenda the Good Witch and the Bad Witch. 

The Wizard of Oz with Judy Garland was an all time favourite movie when I was young. It still is. I always thought it would be such a great thing to be able to click your beautiful red ruby slippers and they would take you back to the place and people you loved the most. A place where you felt safe, and loved. 

Once I had chosen the characters, Ann asked me to place them wherever I thought they should be in the sand. So I placed the two witches on their own on one side of the tray, the Cowardly Lion on his own in the middle and then Dorothy, the Tin Man and Scarecrow on the other side. Then she asked me what each character represented. I was Dorothy, my teens were the Tin Man and Scarecrow, my husband was the Cowardly Lion and the witches were the Other Women he has brought into our relationship. 

The Wizard of Oz is very fitting because it deals with a young girl fighting  fantasy to get back to reality. I’m trying to live in the real world but my husband likes to escape to fantasy when reality gets to be too much. He gets to be the Cowardly Lion because I feel like he is a coward sometimes when he can’t tell people to mind their own business, leave us alone and not let anyone into our couple bubble. That’s what Ann calls it. It’s a bubble for only us but he’s let two other women into it. He’s cowardly not telling his girlfriend that he chose to come home and try to make our marriage work because he loves his wife. She believes I pressured him with our children and how his relationship with them would turn out. She’s fighting to keep him in the fantasy side of his life right now. She keeps telling him that a life with her is what he really wants. Time and time again he’s proved it. She tells him he wouldn’t have done the things he’s done if he wasn’t desperate to get out of our relationship. She thinks that four years of talking, texting, and screwing around with a married man wipes out 25 years of family, friends and hard work. She feels he didn’t really give them a chance. What she doesn’t know is, that she crossed the line from fantasy into reality. He had a wife, who took care of him and his family, he didn’t need another one. He just wanted her to be an escape for a week here and there. The same thing happened with his first affair. She wanted more and he wanted his family. I’ve read that married men do not leave their wives, their wives end the marriage when they’ve had enough with the lies and other bullshit their husbands keep bringing home. 

Back to the sand box…

Ann asked me why the witches were on one side and Dorothy was on the other? Well, I’m Dorothy and I don’t want either of those women near me or my family. Ann asked how I would feel if she moved them to the side with Dorothy? I told her that wasn’t an option, they don’t get to be in my life, and continue to hurt my family.  She asks what I would like to do with them? Ultimately, I would like to burry them in the sand and not ever have to think about or deal with them again. She says “So do it.” and I proceed to burry them in the sand so I cannot see them anymore. She asks “Where would you like this Cowardly Lion to go?” I would like him to be with us, he makes us a family and complete when he is really with us. When he is concerned with his girlfriend, I can feel the distance and it creates so much anxiety because I feel like I’m always waiting for him to abandon us again, while he bounces back into the fantasy where he can be someone else for a bit. I don’t like being in the fantasy side of things, I want to click my heals together, and return to where I feel safe. 

I don’t feel safe right now. I let him move back home because he’s convinced that wherever I am at the end of the day, that’s where he wants to be. Unfortunately he’s still talking to his girlfriend and she’s doing her best to plead her case, telling him that he wouldn’t have done the things he’s done if he didn’t want their relationship more. Maybe she’s right. I honestly don’t know how any woman or man, who claims to be a woman or man, knowingly continues to try to pull a marriage apart when the married man or woman says they want their marriage to work.  As far as I’m concerned his not ending the communication with her is still telling her she is right, that the relationship with her is what he really wants and it’s still telling me the same thing as it told me before, that it is not over. 

She thinks I begged him to come home, I did not. I tried very hard to create distance so that he could have a relationship with her if he wanted that, but he wouldn’t allow me to keep that distance. I tried not answering his calls or texts, but then he would just come to the house. It didn’t take long for him to figure out that our lives were moving on without him, that we weren’t going to wait around for him to get his life on track. 

I got a job, painted my bedroom, did a few other minor renos to the house, bought new furniture for my bedroom, the kids booked school trips and didn’t bother to consult him. He was upset that nobody was asking him for his input. The kids felt that he moved out without even so as much as a goodbye or explanation so they decided to treat him with the same respect. They feel if he wants to be part of their lives he will make the effort, they aren’t going to chase after him. He feels when this happens that it must be because of what I’m saying to them. They are smart kids, big enough to pay attention to his behaviour and the selfies that their dad’s girlfriend is posting on Facebook. 

Playing in the sand gave me a lot to think about. I know that before too long if he doesn’t get over the guilt he feels for allowing things to get as far as they have with his girlfriend, and cut off from her completely that I will have to ask him to leave for the very last time and move on from this craziness that he’s brought into our life. I keep having faith that he will find the courage to be the good guy I married.  I’m hoping we’ll be able to burry this all in the sand, click our heals together, wake up somewhere over the rainbow, back in Kansas, with the tornado behind us, and the witches forgotten far, far away in Oz.