This is a one if those posts that people are going to either love or hate. But I learnt a long while ago that I would always be true to myself; and what I have learned from the infidelity sideshow that visited my life is that to truly recover I had to see the story from both sides.
As part of finding myself, which included reading so many books, I lost my indignation. Personally I don’t believe that there is room for indignation in the recovery process.
My friend ‘an Explorer’ (and yes, although I have never met him in person, I count him as a friend) over at ‘Cad confessional’ recently wrote This post for the betrayers that really made me think.
Personally his post is something I would recommend all betrayers to read, because I believe his perspective on the actions they have taken, and where they find themselves, is well written and helpful for those who are lost.
But when I read it, it made me stop and think even now, all these years later, about Danny and I. Here are my thoughts with regard to what his post made me reflect on.
When Danny left my sister asked me if I was princess Tippytoes, even in the throes of my despair, and she was right. That was the first thing that came to mind when I read this post. How hard Danny worked to enable us to have our house, and the things we had. In fact even now, in France, Danny supports me whilst I work on my book.
In his post ‘An Explorer’ says ‘Perhaps the affair was the path out of the relationship we want out of or an attempt to recover our identity, power, or sense of sovereignty over our lives.‘ When I read that I immediately knew that is what Danny was doing when he left: He was trying to get back a life where he didn’t worry about losing me every day (let us not forget, he even thought I wouldn’t turn up to Our wedding!)
I thought of how the Counsellor had told me that Danny had left for someone who he felt superior to, because he would not feel that with me. And more than anything I thought of a time (one of many) when I had fed Danny’s fear:
Backtrack to 2000: Danny and I had been married a year. We had sold my ex marital home and were living in rented accommodation, but I wanted my own house. So Danny had changed his job and gone to work in a factory so that his income would be more regular. I had gone back to work into a stressful job, after taking redundancy two years previously after my mum had died. With the redundancy money I had paid back all the debts that had been tied in with my marital home, but despite this I had still walked away from the house sale with less than my ex; I had married Danny and just didn’t want to fight about money any more. I believed that because my debts had been paid in full that this would improve my credit rating. But in the October I tried to get credit for a new car and was rejected. It sent me into a spiral of depression and I didn’t speak to Danny for five days! It was not his fault, but it was Danny who I transferred my pain onto.
Knowing what I know now it would have just compounded Danny’s fear of not being able to keep me. I can see that when Danny left me for ‘her’ he was in fact trying to find his way out of the fear he had created; and at that moment in time he thought the best course of action was to leave me for someone else.
Only yesterday I talked to Danny about how ‘An Explorer’s’ post had made me think back to the time I sent Danny ‘to Coventry’ because I was upset, and knew that he loved me, so I wanted him to suffer! WTF was that all about?!
As we talked, even now, Danny said ‘but it was my fault because of my credit rating, you didn’t get credit.’ Even now he believed it to be his fault, when in fact it had nothing to do with him. Of course I reassured him that was not the case, but I was surprised that he still carries that with him even today. I chose to stay, I love him, and I choose to be happy, so I did what I could do to take that thought from his mind. That bell was rung too long ago for it to affect me now.
As ‘An Explorer’ also says Danny’s actions did lead us down a path of re-pair to repair, and we are stronger now as a result. My husband would always run away, or bury his head in the sand. When he realised his mistake he came back and faced every fear he had; he even does that today by agreeing to me sharing our story, and has helped others when they have sought his advice.
Only this morning Danny was singing You’ll never know by High Gloss, it was a song from the time of ‘The War’. I put my arms around him and asked him if sharing our story and the book coming out had brought it back into his consciousness. Danny was honest and said it had a little bit; I asked him if he had got upset and he said that ‘some tears’ had come to his eyes recently.
I had read him ‘An Explorers’ post and I could see it resonated with him. There are betrayers out there who are suffering, and my personal experience is that they suffer for longer (or even forever) because as ‘An Explorer’ says ‘the bell cannot be un-rung’ for them. But where the betrayed are concerned I truly believe that we have the ‘power’ to recover if we allow ourselves to. Nobody can tell me it’s not hard, I have been there, but only our minds can help us, and hope from other people’s stories.
The story of the young man who committed suicide also resonated with me. In the aftermath of ‘The War’ Danny had in fact considered stepping in front of a train whilst at work, believing that would stop my pain, and make me financially secure. In fact even after we renewed our vows, over two years later Danny was sent home from work because he was believed to be a danger to himself, and was sent to a Psychiatrist for help.
Some could say Danny would have been running away again if he had committed suicide; maybe, but it doesn’t detract from the state of mind he was in. When I read him ‘An Explorers’ post he said that if I had told him to commit suicide, or that I would be better off he were dead, he would have stepped in front of a train. Thank God I had the temerity not to be so spiteful! If you have been reading this blog some time you will know my thoughts on bitterness
I am sharing my thoughts with you because for us to get to where we are I (yes I!) needed to understand Danny’s emotions and thoughts; still do even today which is why ‘An Explorer’s post resonated with me, and I picked up on the tune Danny was humming this morning.
People are people, they make mistakes. Yes, if they KEEP making the same mistakes then perhaps it is time to reconsider your position and what you do or don’t want from life. As ‘An Explorer’ says ‘However, infidelity, like all betrayals, will demand change if you want something different in your life.‘ That all ties in with my last post about the difference between being ‘sorry’ and being Contrite. But my point is that relationships are ongoing, and support and understanding should be ongoing too, shouldn’t it?
Last but not least ‘the dog knowing’ resonated with me. Only a few days ago Danny and I were talking about our old Westie, Snowy the Dude. Danny remembered how Snowy had jumped on his lap the night he returned, and wouldn’t get off. It’s strange what we remember because I said I remembered Snowy jumping on his lap the day he left, as if begging him not to leave. When I said that Danny went very quiet, because he should have listened to the dog (for his sanity not mine).
We should all listen to the dog because they are wiser than we are when it comes to love.