My Choice

25 Nov

Often those who have been betrayed by a infidelity feel like they don’t have a lot of choice in the matter.  We don’t really when our spouse/partner decides behind our back to lie, deceive, steal and carry on a adulterous relationship that they SWORE would never happen.  The betrayed struggle with the why? And sometimes the answers is just because they can.

Murderers have no RIGHT to kill anyone just because they can. Cheaters have no RIGHT to kill a marriage just because they can.  In my opinion, Green’s cheating almost KILLED my marriage by doing something that he had NO right to do.  But we don’t live in a black and white world, do we?  In the end just because Green had NO right to do it doesn’t mean he couldn’t do it. He DID it.  He cheated on me.  Green’s cheating took my right to a marriage free from infidelity away from me.

So where does that leave me, the betrayed. Once that right has been violated where was a court to cure my violated rights? Where was my justice?

Most would say then this is where the betrayed spouse regains control.   Many choose to divorce.  Infidelity is like an atom bomb – it destroys so profoundly for some that there is nothing left to fight for anymore.  Some choose to forgive and reconcile.  While the infidelity is no less offensive, no less hurtful, no less destructive this betrayed spouse instead sees a path to redemption and perhaps a way through this tragedy to rebuilding a better and stronger marriage.

ImageI choose to forgive and to accept what happened. I chose to live a life NOT forever marked by it.

Am I hurt? Yes.

Am I traumatized? Yes

Is our marriage broken? Yes, somewhat, but not permanently.

But I won’t let the choices that were taken away from me push me towards choosing to lose the good that I had before.  I won’t let Green’s poor choice to be unfaithful invalidate my marriage which was a good choice.  My marriage was not a mistake and I do not regret it. 

It’s Thanksgiving week… it’s also the upcoming birthday for my daughter, Ditto.  It should be a happy time in our home!

Two years ago the holidays were marred by anger that Green displayed while in the early part of his affair. I was deep in the fog of being gas-lighted and growing more manic and depressed – I could NOT believe he was actually cheating on me.  I had not yet told one soul about my suspicions. I truly thought I was going crazy. I wanted to preserve the holidays.  My girls were so small – just one and four – I didn’t want to take away any of the holiday joy.  It was a terrible time. I felt very much alone and abandoned.  I felt very much unloved.  It was a nightmare.

Two years later I can remember that pain and that disconnect from the world but it no longer consumes me with the manic power it had before.  I do feel better now.

I choose to be stronger than the weakness and selfishness that my husband demonstrated against me.

I choose to have more grace, dignity and kindness than my husband’s whore demonstrated against me.

I choose to find my way back to me and building more happier chapters in the story of MY LIFE. 

I choose to commit to being happier in spite of what I am facing in recovering from this attack on me as a wife, partner and a friend to my husband.

Am I perfect?  Nope. I have raged. I am been manic. I have been suicidal. I was physically violent against Green. For nearly two years I was consumed by the pain that seemed to always weigh me down.  It still does. I still have periods of the dark trying to swallow me back. Feelings of seriously low self esteem, valleys of doubt and pinnacle peaks of manic rage threaten to consume me.    I struggle daily to overcome them and not let them take the whole day away.

So for a little bit, bear with me, I am going to work a few days of gratitude like so many are on other blogs, Facebook and Twitter. No I am no going to become Ms. Positive Power lady…. I am too cynical for that but I am going to try to be more grateful for my life to heal myself, maintain the recovery of my marriage, and to be a strong role model for my two observant and watchful daughters.

I am grateful for my ability to have a CHOICE in how I recover from infidelity.

choose happinessSome betrayed spouses don’t have the choice to reconcile.  Some betrayed spouses don’t have the option to divorce.  I am financially independent enough to choose either and I am GRATEFUL that my finances do not cloud my decision making process.  I am grateful too that physical violence from Green was never a factor – I never have feared him acting violent against the girls or myself.  I know that I am free to make a choice to stay or leave free from physical intimidation and I am grateful for it.

There is no quick fix.  I don’t think I will be happier automatically because I choose it but I do think I can start to train myself to choose to turn away from the doubt and pain and instead taking those times to refocus on my blessings and life’s little joys that I can getter better.  For the last two years I gave away so MUCH TIME and ENERGY to trying to end episode when so much of it really was out of my control.  I can only control how I react to it, overcome it, learn from it and PROGRESS from it.  I refuse to let this event hurt me further.  Instead I choose to make me better and in many ways it has.

I am less judgmental and I am open to more point of view.  I am see strength in forgiveness.   I feel blessed to own the power of redemption.  I recognize the opportunities to lead less with force and more with compassion.   While I have lost a many ‘friends’… I gained a lot of insight into myself and value my real friends.  I also gained many friends here in the blogosphere… and for you too, I am very grateful, friends and readers.

This is no quick fix.  Today I got bad news about my needing to do more work on my own physical health but I won’t let those things get me down.

Next week I am starting a new job and leaving behind my old toxic one.   I think its a sign that the pendulum is swinging in a more positive fashion because I AM making that pendulum swing in a more positive fashion.

I want to catch the wave and see the next good thing on the horizon… I facing a holiday season full of triggers and while I don’t treasure those traumatic events instead I will try to re-frame them against the context of the good things that I have accomplished in spite of those assaults against me.   I am not what happened to me, I repeat, I am NOT happened to me…. I AM what I choose to become. 

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15 Responses to “My Choice”

  1. tryinghard November 25, 2013 at 12:19 pm #

    Great post. We are on the same time frame in recovery. It is finally starting to click for me too. I will re-read this. Inspiring!

    • Flaca November 26, 2013 at 11:30 am #

      i’m glad it was helpful! we’re turning a corner i think. happy holidays!

  2. bamboozled1 November 25, 2013 at 12:34 pm #

    hehe, i had to giggle at not becoming positive power lady… life long cynic here also, i think in our situations it should be a very long time before we even try to be better about that one! grateful for you too flaca! have happy holidays!

    • Flaca November 25, 2013 at 1:42 pm #

      happy holidays to you, too!

  3. leaveitonthepage November 25, 2013 at 7:00 pm #

    Bravo!!! I love all the positive energy in this post. Good for you. It’s been two years for me too, actually it’s been exactly two years ago today that my husband first started to disclose his infidelities. I cried on Saturday but I did not cry yesterday and I have not cried today. I thought I would be a wreck but I’m doing okay. I’ve been fighting off a migraine, I get horrid headaches as a result of my back problems. My husband was sweet and kind all day and insisted I get a massage and was just lovely all day. He knew how much of a trigger today could be so he’s told me about a hundred times how much he loves me and why he loves me. It helps.

    This really got me, ” I still have periods of the dark trying to swallow me back. Feelings of seriously low self esteem, valleys of doubt and pinnacle peaks of manic rage threaten to consume me. I struggle daily to overcome them and not let them take the whole day away.” I deal with all of this too but it’s less and less as time goes by.

    As far as regret goes, most of the time I regret marrying my husband but every once in awhile I feel grateful that I married him. The feelings of “I”m glad I married him” are fleeting but at least they are not non-existent.

    I cried to our marriage counselor that I’ll never have a marriage that’s free from infidelity, I’ll never be married to a man who loved me enough to not cheat. He said “you’re correct, you won’t but you’ll have something else wonderful, you’ll have a marriage that demonstrates an incredible amount of grace and forgiveness and that’s very special too.”

    • Flaca November 26, 2013 at 11:29 am #

      i like your marriage counselor! recognizing that your marriage is valuable and special is an amazing insight. i’m holding on to his comments to you.

      i think we are in the same place – i grieve very much for the marriage i had, the marriage that i thought i had, and that marriage that was taken from me. but i do it less and less. now i focus more on tomorrow and more about the future. i am not scared about the future the way i had been and that’s a good place to be, for now.

      are you coming up with some wonderful recipes for this holiday?

      • leaveitonthepage November 27, 2013 at 8:59 pm #

        I told my therapist that I need to let the man he was be dead and try to move on with the new man he is. Some day’s that’s harder than others.

        No new recipes this year, I just don’t have it in me. I did as much baking as I could today and I pray I make it through tomorrow with my sanity intact. If not there’s always xanax!

  4. Kate M. November 26, 2013 at 6:45 am #

    Thanks for this wonderful post. The first anniversary of Dday is coming up, less than a week before Christmas. We’ve been blessed with very good IC and MC from the get-go, and I had been doing much better for quite a while now- but the season is upon us and it’s a huge trigger. I’m struggling with all of the holiday stuff in general and don’t want to put up our tree. I’ll do it eventually for the kids, but… it’s so sad to feel this way about something I once loved so much. The OW harassed and stalked us from the time my BS dumped her (immediately after I found out- he had been aware for months that she was crazy and trying to figure a safe way out, which he now knows would never have been allowed to happen) until well after the holiday… it was a nightmare for us and the kids. We tried to hide it from them but they’re older children so it was impossible for them not to realize something was terribly wrong. Our daughter crying as we opened gifts is something that will probably haunt us both for a long time.

    We’re all doing better now, but still. It’s a tough time of year.

    • Kate M. November 26, 2013 at 6:49 am #

      oops, I’m the BS, right? He’s the WS..?. sometimes the abbreviations confuse me.

      • Flaca November 26, 2013 at 11:41 am #

        don’t worry about the abbreviations. i find it confusing still, too! 😉

        i am glad to hear you have a good IC and MC! At one time Green and I had a good routine for our IC/MC but lots of things got in the way and we haven’t been to any counseling individual or marital for awhile now – about 6 months. we do need to return and work on more things. I’ll take a lead from you and make sure we get back on it in the new year.

        I am sorry to hear about your daughter. It’s tough on the kids. I remember when I threw Green out of the house and he’d been gone for a few days I had to finally explain to my 4 year old that “Daddy didn’t live with us anymore.” It was the hardest thing I ever had to tell someone… seeing her green eyes well up with tears makes me cry every-time I think about it. These kiddos don’t deserve to have to live through this but your getting help to overcome this is a great tool and resource. I know it will come up again, one day, when she is a teenager or young adult. Maybe when she gets engaged or married. I dread that conversation! But perhaps I’ll look back and have some advice for her that I would not have had I not lived this experience.

        Best wishes for happy holiday season!

  5. horsesrcumin November 26, 2013 at 11:49 am #

    Perfect. It isn’t easy (well, d’uh) but forward we must travel. You’re doing it so well. The marriage you thought you had. Mmmm. It broke my heart a little again to read that. It is hard to have more than twenty truly fabulous years with your best friend in the world, and still fancy the pants off him only to discover he is just like all the other lying, cheating arseholes he always sneered at. Oh well, moment (fucking long one) of madness over. He seems to be back, the other guy, the one I madly loved. Still hurts so badly, though.

  6. boysmom November 26, 2013 at 1:59 pm #

    Hi Flaca, awesome post as always. You are incredibly strong and have come so far in 2 years. I hope I can do the same.
    I have an unrelated question… my husband is contrite 5 months post affair and has had no contact with the other woman, but I recently became suspicious. On his computer I reviewed his history, and found that he had been watching sleazy youtube clips of girls “twerking” srmi nude, ugh.

    • Flaca November 28, 2013 at 11:09 am #

      I’m sorry to hear that. Does he know that this type of behavior makes you feel?

      With Green and I it has been clearly stated this type of behavior is not tolerated. I know some folks are ok with it – that’s cool but it’s not me, as a feminist I find it demeaning and crude. But for you what are your issues with it? Can you talk about that with him without indicating you checked his browsing history? Ask him if he’s interested in that kind of stuff and why? What the needs he’s looking to fulfill by doing that? He might have some insight into what clips give him and reflect on what that behavior really does to him.

  7. Charity Betj Schermerhorm February 21, 2014 at 3:15 pm #

    I still have no answer to why myhusband cheats but i am sure he atleast cares about me more good luck

    • Flaca March 1, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

      it’s a hard place to be. to balance that love can still exist between a husband and wife is one (or both) is unfaithful is very difficult. i am not so sure it can. best of luck to you.

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