Apologies for the novella, but I just have to get this out.
The complete mindfuck is one of the worst parts. My trust and judgement feel completely demolished. At times I feel so groundless, like a free fall into the abyss. There are small windows, just about daily now, of genuine okay-ness, but going through the D process is highly triggering. Heck, daily life is triggering! The most innocent comments or any small unsuspecting thing can easily set off the inner alarm. Yet the panic seems to have been replaced with an eerie surealness, that my life has somehow disappeared and I've woken up in someone else's weird dream. A whole life gone, just like that! Yet all those fond memories are tainted, ruined. The life I knew and loved dearly turned out to be fake. Did I imagine it? It seemed so real.
There is likely some modicum of guilt these people feel over what they did and how they handled things, but do they really feel anything beyond a twinge that maybe they're not quite the wonderful person they thought they were? Do they just shove that little twinge aside and plow forth like it's nothing? For many months, I had this visual of WH purposefully running me over and speeding off, never even looking in the rear view mirror to see the carnage.
One time we were on the freeway, and a squirrel darted out in front of the car. He couldn't avoid running it over squishing the poor little guy dead. I vividly remember him looking in the rear view mirror back at the squirrel, saying "don't look". But there was no looking back at me. Just sped off in a cloud of dust, tires squealing. It's crazy to feel you are less than roadkill to the one you shared a life with, the one you love and trust the most and who you believed felt the same way about you.
Do they even understand the tiniest bit of what they've done to another human being, let alone the one they claimed to "love and cherish"? WH early on said he "understands" my pain and that I am "not alone". These have got to be some of the most empty words he's ever uttered. That and "I love you" are just words that carry zero meaning, just the pain of the lie. There is nothing there to back up his words. Was I dreaming? Did I make up someone in my head and heart that wasn't real? Did he change? Why? What happened? Where did he go?
Does anyone else experience this? A never-ending line of questions - what happened? how? why? how could they? what kind of person is this? how could I not see it? why am I less than road kill? what happened to the person I married? Sometimes I feel like I'm living inside someone else's night terror without escape.
And if he did this terrible thing, why do I seem to be the one in hell? Yet another question that bothers me to no end.
Of course there is some respite from these thoughts, but this has changed me in some very basic ways. Not all changes are bad. I think I have a lot more compassion for people in general. The little things they do that might have annoyed me previously just don't affect me that way. Sure, I may be bothered but now that I've been to hell, I see the fragility in human existence, how life as you know it can completely change at any given moment. Everyone is vulnerable and they don't even realize it.
Glassy eyed freak is a spot on description. For us, the burden we have to shoulder is dealing with that blindsiding, monumental switching off of all emotions. People like to remind us that our cheaters checked out a long time prior to DDay, and that's most certainly true, but then we have to contend with the fact that these people lied to us for all that time, they suddenly became award winning actors who knew exactly what to say and how to say it in order to keep the wool over our eyes. And then when they decide to end their little stage play, they treat us like we've been natural enemies this whole time and expect us to just lap up the new normal like it ain't no thing. It's such a mindfuck.
This really nails it. So what in the hell goes through the minds of these characters? When WH's "stage mask" fell I was completely shocked. Terrified is the word that best describes the feeling. Who the hell are you??
I realize I will never know his why's and what goes through his mind but it eats at me daily. I try to accept things and let go, but it creeps back in the form of dreams. I have little flashbacks too of the innocently happy times such as when we'd go for our daily walk with the dogs. I felt connected. I felt safe, cozy, loved, fortunate. But none of it was true, not in the way I thought. Everything - a whole life together - destroyed. Crazy.
Always have taken him for his word, even though he told a lot of white lies. Silly me. Didn't think he had it in him to lie about the biggest shit there is and then hide it. Yeah, I trusted him. I mean isn't that what your life partner is supposed to be about: trust, honesty, caring, navigating life together, weathering the ups and downs together, celebrating the good times together? I don't get it.
He is a serial cheater, and I was easy to fool. Who cares if my trust for him is gone, but fuck him for stealing my self-trust. I want it back.
If you made it to the end, thanks for listening.
I appreciate all of you here and this thread where I can get this out. He is pushing for early mediation, and I am triggering. I do not feel emotionally ready to face divorce. It's going to happen soon.