Category: What did Rich do to make it better?

Journal entry: I had started to understand acceptance and fear

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Friday 10th August 2007

I am writing in my journal today because I have a good feeling about me and Rich.

This journal is meant to be about showing the journey we are taking, the bad and the good; and although I have found it to be extremely therapeutic to write in this I have noticed that I don’t tend to write in it when I feel good – which kind of defeats the object.

I cried and cried on Tuesday, I could not control it. – My hormones had a lot to do with it. But the incredible hurt and sadness that I feel is immense.

Rich knew from the Monday that I was upset and asked me about it. We talked, I really cried.

I asked Rich if he still cried and he said that he still thinks about it every day, and cried about one or two times a week. That he cried on Monday night because he knew I was upset, I explained how I felt, what I had talked to Beth about, and read him what I had written in my journal on Tuesday.

We talked about

1) me getting away from him and Rich offered to go away. But that would not be what I needed, it would have to be me who went away, away from everything. But I explained to Rich that this was just an option I may have to consider; not one I was definitely going to take.

2) About selling the house, that would give us more money, and that I don’t want to as the house is my back up, my plan B; because I would sell the house and take the money and go wherever life took me. (Although as I am writing this I know that wherever life took me I would want Rich with me; I know that now.)

3) About everything – I explained to Rich, again, that he must put his arms around me when I cry. That perhaps he needs to say sorry every day. That he has broken my heart so badly, he knows that now. That he has virtually destroyed me.

But even though I was sobbing Rich still did not put his arms around me; and when I pointed out that this was so what I needed he said he was afraid. That what I was saying sounded like a goodbye speech. I did point out to Rich at this point that whatever I say, including asking what wants for tea, sounds like a goodbye speech to him.

I went upstairs as I find it so hurtful when I cry in front of him, and he does not comfort me. He followed me up and looked so unhappy, he had the same grey colour in his face as he had when he first came back to me. (And as I am writing this I am realising that it is killing him, this is killing him; and I don’t want that.)

He said that the main thing he thinks of is of how he should not have left me; of how he has broken my heart; of how he was running away. He still swears that they never had full sex, I do believe him.

I explained to Rich that it is no good him crying in one place and me crying in another. We need to cry together, to understand and know how we are both feeling, and to not be afraid of it. This will bring us closer together.

It has been good since then, still cried yesterday but do expect that, and it was only very briefly.

I thought that I would write in all of the positives that do come into my mind now.

  • How much stronger I am than I was the day I started to write this journal.
  • How much more I know that it was not a long affair. In fact if I detach myself from it I can see that it was nothing at all.
  • How much Rich loves me, treasures me; the look in his eyes when he looks at me.
  • How far we have come together.
  • How sorry Rich is. How, if he could sacrifice anything to change what he did to me he would.

Yesterday we went down and changed Rich’s bank account into joint names. He was so excited and so pleased that we had done that, it almost made me cry; it was so important to him.

Today I caught sight of Rich looking at me; the way he looks at me, the adoration in his eyes; tell me where do I find that again? I don’t!

I am really looking forward to our time off together now; seeing Alison and Peter tonight, everyone coming down tomorrow, going to France on Monday.

But before we do any of that, I am going to make love with my husband this afternoon.

I can honestly say that today, for the first time, I feel that Rich and I are going to make it, no doubts.

Footnote:

Today we were talking about buying a fireguard in France, of how we could look at in the winter and think of France. The look on Rich’s face when he said “and watch Strictly Come Dancing, and Match of the Day with my head on your lap.” I could see how much he wanted that, how much he has always wanted that; and so obviously did not want to let that go in the first place.

It just emphasised how much of this (what has happened) was all about manipulation, circumstances, and fear. It made my eyes fill up with tears, not of sadness but with happiness because I could see that Rich’s love for me is so total, so complete; and how it always has been.

Mois

Reflections 2018

I have read various descriptions of what ‘acceptance’ is, the Eckhart Tolle version, from ‘The Power of Now’ describes it as such:

“that acceptance is the “this is it” response to anything occurring in any moment in life…..”

I know that we have to accept where we are, accept the moment, accept the weather, accept the things we cannot change because otherwise we would drive ourselves mad. The examples I have given here are all physical things, but I think that acceptance is also about accepting our feelings; and it was only recently that I was reminded of this again:

I realised how I had been denying something to myself over the past few weeks; I thought that I was okay with something, and looking at all the logical parts of it I was okay with where I was, I had accepted a situation and I had moved forward; but my head had decided that it was not going to acknowledge was the emotional side of how I felt, and where the emotional side was concerned I realised I was not okay. Logically the position I found myself in was okay, but emotionally I was sad for the intimacy that I had lost where a friendship was concerned  and I realised and admitted to myself that it was something that I  was never going to get back.  When I realised this I put into  place the things that I had learnt during this time in my life and I just sat and acknowldeged the fact that I was sad; I said it out loud to myself and I shed a tear.

As always when I acknowledged this fact  I woke up the following morning feeling better. I had owned the fact that I was sad and as soon as I did this it no longer played on my mind: it is what it is and it aint what it aint, (a saying that Rich and I learnt to use all those years ago) and whilst I miss that companionship and intimacy I also know that I am in the right place and that in time the sadness will pass.

I have used this example because this is what I am starting to realise in this entry in my journal; It shows that I am starting to accept what has happened. Because it has happened, I couldn’t change it we were where we were.

I knew that I had to accept it, knew that I would cry some days, feel good some days, and then cry the next, knew that the demon would be waiting for me in my car, that I had to face what Rich had done. In fact at the end of the entry I say how I had come to expect that I was still going to cry, and perhaps it is telling the I only cried for a brief space of time.

But I found as time went on that the more I accepted it, the less it happened. In fact this episode in my life has led me on a path of discovery and enlightenment and enriched my life much more than I ever knew it would at this time; and as I have explained it has helped me deal with something that has happened only recently.

For me this journal entry also deals with the issue of the fear that the some people who have betrayed feel when they are trying to rebuild a relationship that they broke on the first place(something I have touched on in previous posts).  It was important that I understood that Rich was afraid, to enable us to get to where we are today. Yes there were still times that I thought he had no entitlement to feel afraid, that he was not entitled to any help or empathy; but if I had continued on that vein and not considered Rich’s feelings at times we would not be where we are today, stronger and happier on a new adventure in France.

Although I was heartbroken, and although it hurt like hell when Rich did not put his arms around me, I knew, even when I wrote this that he was afraid; and even today he still is sometimes. I know that, and when he is I either cuddle him or remind him to face his fears and perhaps ask himself why he still has them.

This just highlights the damage that something like this can do, because for Rich even now, it can still break his heart when he thinks about what he has done; and he still can’t understand why he did it.

I can honestly say that my heart is no longer broken.

When I first started to write this book I read Rich the part of the story of when I was first told that he had been having an affair, the part where he does not come back after the revelation The first shot is fired…. As I read it to him, ten years later,  I did not expect his response: He just loooked at me with immense pain etched on his face, burst into tears and said “I am so sorry.” That told me how much pain Rich is still in at times and it breaks my heart that he feels that way.

As the person who has been betrayed do we get so caught up in our own pain that we fail to see the other person’s pain? Do we become so self-righteous that we stop listening? At the beginning I understand (of course I do) why we behave in this way, but over time I believe that we have to find the ability to come down from our high place and listen. I really do.

I find this entry so important because I hope that it helps you to start to understand just how destroyed Rich was. I know from other people’s stories that so many people who commit adultery are destroyed; they have destroyed themselves as well as others that they love. I read how one man struggled with his emotions for what he had done but felt he could not talk to his wife because he deserved it; and did not want to cause her any more pain by talking about it. I know that this is so common, so many women struggle with their husband’s lack of communication and I would urge them to look at Rich’s side of this story and understand that they may well feel afraid and unworthy.

In a previous journal entry (not serialised here, but in the book) I had acknowledged that I only wrote in my journal when I was struggling and not when I was happy. I had even questioned whether surely that was the point of the journal – to show the happy and sad. So in this entry I have said how I am writing in my journal ‘because I have good feelings about me and Rich.’ I had recognised that to survive we had to look at all of the emotions that we felt including the good things that happened and I it was equally important that I had started to include Rich in these conversations, started to share with him the things that I was realising from writing my journal.

In a previous post I had said that when we first got back together Rich did not want us to have a joint bank account again; and he had made it clear that he thought that part of me only wanted him for his income and to keep the house; it had broken my heart because we had always shared everything and it reinforced to me at that time just how destroyed our relationship was.  Counselling – It is he who should be sorry not me!

Rich’s attitude about having joint bank accounts had just underlined the crappy situation we were in, that he had believed the lies he had been told, that he thought that I only wanted him for his income and what he could bring into the house.  But of course I had increased my hours at work, and had my own money. I had needed to show Rich that I didn’t need his money. So when Rich when could see this he wanted us to have a shared account again, because he realised that it was ‘us’ we shared everything and it took him three months for him to realise this.

Rich was so happy when I agreed to add him to my account, and I understand why, because it was another small step to us becoming us again; it was also a way of Rich knowing that I was committed because I did not need him or his money, but I still wanted our joint account back.

Before ‘The War’ Rich would always sit with his head on my lap whilst we watched programmes, and this entry shows how he just wanted that normality back. We never did buy that fireguard, but he did lay with his head on my lap to watch programmes again.

I love my optimism in this entry I am starting to believe that Rich and I were going to make it. I know that we were still only halfway up that mountain, but that it was hope that kept us going all the way to the top and down the other side.

I hope this helps you, or someone you may know.

Moisy

You may want to visit my other blog to see where we are now on our French adventure in rural France https://moisfrenchadventure.com

Anger and Rage

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Despite it being over eleven years since ‘The War’ in our lives it has only been over the past  years, as I have been pulling my book together, that I have started to think about the role of anger and rage in the lives of those who have been betrayed. 

When considering the person who has been betrayed it is perfectly understandable that they feel rage and anger with regard to what has happened to them. It is also understandable that due to this their actions may be erratic, out of character (perhaps because their world has been turned upside down!) and at times downright mad. I threw Rich’s underpants out in the road when he was not with me, and I never did pick them up! I threw his stuff on our neighbours drive and at the time I didn’t give a shit who stole it. I punched Rich and gave him  black eyes! That would be because I had been driven mad with grief, pain and fear. No I was not acting in my normal rational way, but that may have been because at that time I did not know what normal was anymore. 

For the people who read this blog who are the people that betrayed, those who have caused the heartache and pain, you may want to read it if you want to use it to help your relationship and rebuild.

I need to warn you all  now, in some places I am going to be  blunt! 

My reasons for this particular post are these:

  1. To help those who have been betrayed to understand that what you feel is normal, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

I have read other’s stories and in it they say how the person who broke their heart has used their understandably (un)reasonable behaviour as a weapon against them; have said how they have changed, swear more, drink more, over react to small things. This is normal; if you read our story you will see my rage and anger in it from day one, when Rich left. The Rage did subside to anger over time but it still  lasted for at least another two years after our ‘War’ began. In the beginning the rage and anger did get me through what were some of the darkest times of my life; but over time I had to let them go otherwise I knew that  they would eat me up and destroy not just us but me as well. You may want to read:  Beware Bitterness – It will be your enemy

2. To help those who have betrayed understand what the other person feels -we all feel it, and if you want your relationship to survive you need to understand that you caused it; so don’t bitch about it, and own it!

When Rich came back he never once criticised me for my anger or rage, he just looked and acted ashamed and sorry; heartbroken that he had turned me into such a raging banshee at times! He never judged me, he took it because he had caused it; no matter what it was that I did (and there were many things).  If you are judging someone whose heart you have broken for the way they behave as a result of your actions, then I am not sure what you will expect from the future. We all have to accept our responsibilities. 

3.That leads me on to the last reason for this post. I have come to realise that a lot of the rage and anger that I felt was actually about myself. I was  so angry with myself for not listening to my gut feelings in the months, or even years (who knows!) leading up to the outbreak of ‘The War’. I was angry with myself for losing myself in our relationship; losing the person that I had always been because I just focused on what we had and nothing else; I was angry with myself for letting myself go; angry with myself for not challenging the behaviours I had been faced with; and more than anything I was angry with myself for being so arrogant: believing that  what we had nobody could take away from me; so I didn’t always treat our relationship with respect or take the time to understand Rich’s insecurities throughout our relationship that lead up to ‘The War’. 

I know for some people this will cause outrage, especially if they are at the start of their journey. It was only as I researched and wrote my book, and read my old journal that I understood that a lot of the anger that I used to feel was actually directed at me. Sure I had deflected it onto Rich, let’s not forget that everything is their fault right?! But in reality the one person who had really let me down was me. 

That is why I always say to people when they ask me how they can survive the pain: Always have yourself first, without yourself you have nothing. I did that, and I still have myself first;  but over time as the pain subsided my journal gave me the abiility to reflect; through this I was able to  see not only the other person’s failings and frailties but my own as well. 

I know some people think it is a cliche: but this is a journey you are on; like it or not, you are adrift on that ocean of despair and at the beginning only you will get yourself across it. So use that rage and anger, accept it’s part of the process, but don’t hang on to it forever and at some point I would suggest that you have a conversation with yourself about who you’re really angry with. 

Controversial I know!

Moisy 

 

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Coping Mechanisms: Little boxes, Little boxes, Little boxes made of ticky tacky

The title to this post belongs to Malvina Reynolds who composed this song about social housing, but it is so apt for my post! 

broken open box

I thought that given that I have now shared with you how three months on from starting my Mad Journal journal I had decided view to it as tool I could use for ‘A New Beginning’, that I would tell you about the discussion I had with my then teenage son; and how from it I learnt about one of the main things  that I would need to use to get us to where we are today: Acceptance. 

One day when Rich was at work Tom found me crying; he was still so worried about me, and in exaspiration he asked me why I just couldn’t let it go and be happy that Rich was back.

I told him that I just could not just move on from what Rich had done; how all my life I had always had the coping mechanism of visualising a box and putting whatever was bothering me into that box, putting the lid on it and filing it away.  But this time it was not working; I had even tried to put the fucking thing in a lead lined box and weld the lid on and still it came back out and bit me on the arse every day! I just could not stand the thought of having this thing in my mind  for the rest of my life. The things in that box broke my heart every time I thought of them: Rich laughing at me with her; Rich kissing her at Tankerton; Rich setting up house with her; the dressing gowns hung his and her style on the back of the door; how long it had been going on and on and on and on… https://makingthisbetter.com/2018/10/20/may-the-detritus-of-betrayal-fighting-for-my-dignity-in-so-many-ways/

Tom looked at me incredulously and said ‘well that’s not going to work mum, you have to face it and deal with it! How stupid that you thought you could put it in a box; that is not dealing with it!’ He was right! But I was lost! I didn’t know what else I could do to help myself because this had always been my coping mechanism and I couldn’t think of another one. I could not bear the thoughts and images in my head; and more than that I could not bear the thought of what Rich had done to me. 

So I went to my ‘thinking’ place, the Downs, and sat looking out at the expanse of sea and sky and I just let all  of the contents of that box wash over me. Rich had laughed at me, Rich had set up with someone else, Rich had sex with someone else, Rich had lied to me, everything… I cried and cried, but eventually I said to myself ‘This is where you are Moisy, like it or not! You have to get up and get on with it. Stay or go, just make sure you are sure before you make that decision. Don’t be afraid of which one you make.”

I had to accept that it was what it was; that to stay was going to be really painful and that we may not survive in the end. Accept that I was on my own. Accept that although Rich was with me I could not look to him to give me emotional support, not after all he had done. What we had was gone, what I was left with now I didn’t know if I wanted it; and for my own sanity I had to look after me and make decisions based solely on how I felt. 

I had to accept the fact that these fucking things in my head were in my head, they controlled it right now; and by accepting that I actually took some of their power away; because part of their power was the element of surprise – just when you thought you were okay there they were again! 

So I learned over time to say out loud ‘Oh! There you are!’ or ‘ I wondered when you were going to rear your ugly head!’ Another saying was ‘I knew that was coming!’ Or ‘Tell me something I don’t know!’ It worked, accepting it worked; it took a long time but it got easier every day. 

In addition to this, were the small things that Rich did during this time, Lots of small things: showed me affection, cried, showed gratitude, reflected; and over time, as you will see, this started to make new pictures in my mind. More importantly when I thought about giving up, when the thoughts overwhelmed me the small things made me realise that the man I would be leaving would be the man stood in front of me;  not the man who left me he was just a memory. I still see that today: The man Rich is today, he is not the man who left me. 

It is small things, like pieces of a jigsaw they all fit together to make a bigger thing to make something new; but the timeframe is a long one, and you have to be in it for the long haul if you want to stay; and you you have to accept that ultimately you may walk away. 

So the things in your mind: accept them, embrace them, tell them that  your not afraid of them, take their power away. 

Moisy 

 

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Journal Entry – 3 months of recovery: Own It!

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Sunday 29th July 2007

It’s over. I have to let it go.

I have to let go of what happened and look at what we can create new, better even. I do actually believe that.

I have come to a lot of conclusions this week, and all in all, since about Wednesday it has been a very difficult week.

I could not get out of my head what Rich had done; why Rich had done it; the deceit.

I know how much I have changed over the last three months…… so much.

When Rich first came back I had written in this journal that he wanted back what we had, and that he wanted the same. But now I know that we can never have that back; ever!

It has gone, died; Rich killed it by what he did.

I am different, stronger, me again. I know that I don’t need Rich for materialistic things, because I could sell up and buy a really nice flat on my own. – But, also that is why I stay. I love him, and ironically, despite what happened, I know that Rich loves me.

But I have also realised that I needed to talk to Rich about the ‘Why?’  Why did he do it? All of it? Tell him how it made and makes me feel. For the first time in my life take the monkey off my back and put it onto someone else’s – Rich’s, because he put it there in the first place.

So on Friday I did that; I told him that we can never have back what we had (I don’t actually want that back anymore. But Rich does because he is distraught at what he has lost.)

I know that really hurt him, but tough!! I never asked to be where I am, and I do feel, at times, that I have been pussy footing around Rich and working so hard to make him feel alright that I have forgotten about me.

Now the time has come to sort me out, no matter how hard Rich finds it.

It helped putting the monkey on his back, a lot!

It upset him but there you go I am upset! And there was a time, not so long ago, when no-body worried about me.

I made Rich talk to me about Grays and why he went to meet her there in the October; I asked why he started seeing ‘Her’ again in February; told him when I thought he was lying, asked him when he thought of me! I know it really upset him, and perhaps part of me was happy he was so upset.

Toni came up from Cornwall this weekend and we went to see Mary. I went out to show Mary Rich’s new car and we were talking. Rich’s face when we came back into the garden – he looked so worried, so alone. I don’t want him to look like that, so I went over and kissed him. But later I started to think about the answers he gave about Grays; and there have been three different versions so far! The one thing I need Rich to be now is honest, as he has lied to me too often and too long. And then that fact gets to me!

When he got home we ended up arguing over it. I ended up really upset about it all – it all came out, if you like. I told him how he wanted to run away from this part of our recovery, wanted to pretend and ignore it; but it is my head all the time, and I can’t ignore it, and he put it there!

Rich got defensive, the worst thing he can do. So I told him it was over, that I can’t do it. Rich needs to make amends for what he has done and not keep being afraid. I gave him back my wedding ring.

One of the things that gets to me is when I am upset Rich just stands there. I used what had happened in Mary’s garden today as a comparison. It should not, cannot be me who does all the consoling and reassuring. Rich fucked it up! Rich has to fix it, not me!

So I told him that was his last chance to have the courage of his convictions and face his fears. I walked away from him, and he came after me. He had my wedding ring on his little finger, and asked me to put it back on.

But I have said it all now; got all of my demons out. Rich has been honest, must still deal with his guilt, and I will help him, if he wants me to. But ultimately it is his problem.

This is a new beginning, a new relationship. I need to let go of what happened because it was in the past and I don’t want it to affect my life anymore.

I always pride myself on being able to get a grip, and I need to now. I need to stand up to the line, have the courage of my convictions and look at what I have now.

I need to practice what I preach.

Mois

Reflections 2018

I don’t know if you have ever heard of ‘the monkey on your back’: This is where other people give you their problems which then, in their minds become your problem and not theirs; it is a good analogy in fact I still use that analogy in my life now. I know now that in psychology terms this is actually recognised as ‘transference’ when someone else’s problem suddenly becomes your problem and not theirs. Does anybody recognise this? You try to give someone a solution to a problem they have told you about and they keep putting obstacles in the way?

This entry marks a major turning point  in our recovery: I was right I had to think about me, and ensure that I was alright first, and part of that was giving Rich his monkey back – making him own what he had done, and making him accept that it was his responsibility that we were where we were.

In this journal entry I have started to see how much effort I was putting in: facing up to everything, trying to put solutions into place, whilst Rich just cowered in the corner frightened of what he had done.

There I was carrying the responsibility, working to try and heal us, not saying how bereft and distraught I felt; not challenging the lies he was telling me just so we could survive. So I was right: Rich did have to take responsibility for what he had done, and face his fears, one of which was that he did not like himself, because he had let himself down.

By this time I’d had enough driving myself insane and I had started to feel as if I was clinging onto something that was only making me miserable. I had got to the place where I had nothing to lose; so I gave Rich his monkey back and told him to own it by telling him how I felt, what I needed, challenged his lies, and refused to cower to his defensiveness and anger by giving him my ring back and walking away. I took a chance because I could not stay with it the way it was.

Rich and I got to where we are eleven years later by learning from our mistakes and owning them.

At the time I wrote this entry I had still not fully realised that pride was my deadly sin; and that pride was the thing that was making me keep asking Rich about what had happened; I had to know, I must know! I could not bear the thought that he was still lying to me because I had believed his lies before; and this made me feel as if  I was the one who had let myself down because I had turned a blind eye to the things that were screaming at me that something was wrong; and now to think that Rich was still lying to me directly impacted on my pride.

So I kept asking about the episode in Grays that he told me about when we met in the car park before he came back (The Surrender Part 2….. ) because in my mind this is when it had all started; when they had started to play me for the fool. As I have said things were not adding up, I had heard three different versions already and as we all know when that happens it just makes you ask more and more. You will see later in my story that was still not the truth, and I still don’t know the truth now! The only difference is that I know that I never will so I have made up my own mind about the truth (as always it is a recurring theme in this book) and  I’ve moved on.

This entry does show that after this discussion Rich did face up to his fears, of course or I wouldn’t be writing this now! He started that night by coming after me with my ring on his finger and asking me to put it back on. That told me that Rich had listened to what I had said.

I faced up to my fears: Which was namely that Rich may leave again, and I challenged him in the future whenever I thought he was lying to me and whenever he got defensive. I overcame the fear that he may leave because I realised that that worst had happened he already had once and that I had survived once I could do it again! I had started to find myself again so I started to practice what I preached, I stepped up to the plate and looked after me first.

To understand how we now live happily together in France keep reading there are more stories to come, and more entries to share.

If you think this blog will help someone who is currently going through the madness of infidelity then please share; that is why I am sharing our story.

Moisy

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Journal entry – I was dreading Christmas

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Friday 21st December 2007

I am writing to update my journal, but this time not because I feel the need, I just want to update it. I went to Beth’s on the Friday after my last entry and cried, I said that I thought I need to go back to the counsellor. Beth and her friend Louise gave this advice for both me and Rich:

  • Stop trying to get back what you had. You will never get that back, and if that is what you want you need to find someone else, because you will never get it back with Rich. Instead of trying to recover something make something new, and better.

 

  • Stop thinking that whenever you are fed up it is always because of what happened. It may just be because you’re tired, got the arsehole with work, whatever! But because what happened is always foremost in your mind you always take your feelings back to that. In the same way as Rich always assumes you’re going to leave him. STOP doing it!

 

  • Forget things that were said when you both got back together – as you were both mental!! You both said things you did not mean. Rich said things just because he did not know the answer himself. (Rich and I talked about this and why I started this journal. He is mortified by what he said about being flattered that two women were fighting over him, and does not find it an ego boost in any way now.) My Journal – First Entry

 

  • Rich has to understand that my barriers are up –and may well be up for a couple of years. But whilst I have my barriers up I should still be me – which I had not been when I was writing in my journal in the last three to four entries. I had created distance between us as well, was not being tactile, not being me. By doing this (to punish Rich in a way.) I was making myself miserable.

I took all of this advice on board and my head is sorted. I had a blip of four days, but no-where near as bad as before, and I could control it.

We have been to France again and had the most fantastic time.

Rich breaks up from work today for Christmas and we have eleven days off together. I am so looking forward to it.

We are having a shindig for Tom’s eighteenth birthday tomorrow and Rich is so excited to be part of it.

I think that says it all!

 

Mois

 

Reflections 2018

The first thing I thought when I read this entry was that I had completely forgotten this conversation which surprised me, because it was a very important one and helped me massively in dealing with things in the future; they were both so right!

Rich was the one that had to let go of what we had, as you know from what I have written in this book I had come to realise that a long time ago. But for me the most important piece of advice they gave me was to stop thinking that everything revolved around what had happened to us! Whenever I had a problem in life I would immediately link it to what had happened, what Rich had done to me, and therfore everything had to be his fault. Quite simply it wasn’t!

I could have felt pissed off because I had a bad day at work, or because someone had upset me, or something had gone wrong as things do in life.  But when anything happened I would get in the car and the ‘demon’ (oh yes! He was still there it would take a long while before he no longer existed. I sold him with my car!!)  would get into my head and turn  my upset around and tell me it was all because of what Rich had done to me. It was all about ‘The War’!

This was a massive thing for me because as soon as I understood what I was doing I was able to tell that fucking demon to shut up! But I also started to realise that ‘The War’ did not define me, it was not the total of my life, and I had to stop letting it be that. Although it influenced my life greatly and made me the person that I am today it is a contibuting factor in the person that I am today, but only one of many.

For Rich: He would think that anything that went wrong was his fault, because of what he did, he would take sole responsibility for every little thing, from the boiler going wrong to someone upsetting me at work. Sometimes he still does that even now, and I just stop and say to him “What are you saying sorry for?” He normally laughs then and says he doesnt’ know.

Oh, the damage that we do to each other and ourselves.

The advice about forgetting what was said when we first got back together was also good advice because  we were mental and not thinking in any way rationally. I know that most people struggle with this, because we crave to be ‘normal’ again, to think straight again, when in actual fact our lives have been turned upside down, and shook about so why do we expect that of ourselves?

I love the quote: ‘‘I thought I was going mad but the unicorn in the kitchen told me I was okay!’ (I think that came from Walking the Journey’s blog you should check it out; if not it would have been the lovely Dolly Allen @’The Queen is in’)

Rich did say things to me that weren’t true, things that contradicted themselves because he just wanted to say whatever I wanted to hear to make me feel better; to not hurt me anymore. After that  he moved on to saying things to try and explain it to himself,  because he was at a loss as to why he had done it; then he progressed to berating himself for what he had done, what he had said and totally lost himself; and as you will see from my book this eventually had  massive impact on his mental health.

A good example of our madness is that when I started this journal it was because Rich had said that he found it a compliment that two women were fighting over him. By the time I had come to write this entry in my journal  he was mortified that he not only said it but that he thought it at the time. He still feels that way today.

With regard to my barriers,  they did stay up for quite a few more years to come; but I can tell you honestly now, I have no barriers where Rich is concerned and have not had any for over eight years (yes I can remember when they came down – keep reading.) So they can come down eventually it just takes a ton of hard work, reflection and listening. At this stage in our story I love the way ‘this Moira’ holds onto the hope that her head is sorted because I know that she still has a long way to go before she gets to that point.

As I said before in my previous post Coping mechanism – make new memories Tom’s birthday was on Christmas Eve so we held a surprise eighteenth birthday party the weekend before and it was a great success. I look at the photos now and see how thrilled Rich was that he was there involved in the celebrations.

On Christmas Eve we all went out, including Darren and took Tom to the pub, an English tradition. I remember how Rich was so chuffed that he was there to be able to give Tom some money and send him to the bar so that he could order his first drink legally. We left the boys in town after that and made our way home to prepare the meal for Christmas day. It was something so normal, and I kept my head under control because I felt a responsibility to the other people around me to make sure that this festivity was not marked with tears.

I can remember that Christmas was wonderful; we had gone overboard to make it special, with a Christmas tree on the balcony as well as in the house. After dinner we all opened a present and my present from Rich was the most beautiful watch, but the most beautiful thing for me were the tears in Rich’s eyes when I opened it. I knew he was so sorry and that in itself meant more than the gift.

It was important to us that we could make it special for many reasons but not least because at one point in the year we had both thought that we would never celebrate Christmas together in our beautiful house again.

Like I said it is the small things that are important.

Things like this  are all steps that you take to make things something new, a ‘new normal’ It is important to note though that they are contributory steps, every step contributes to the future that you will have; but I do know that if Rich had not been working with me, and taking those steps with me, then I would have been taking them on my own.

Moisy

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Journal Entry: Small steps and small things got us here today

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I left this back from the last journal entry because I think that it is an important piece of advice that I can give you – and the Moisy from then can give you:

Monday 9th July 2007 

Positives for the future:

  1. Rich said thank you.
  2. Rich hates ‘Her,’ regrets it so much.
  3. Rich would do anything to keep me.
  4. Rich is so sorry for what he has done.
  5. Wants us to work so badly.
  6. Rich is so happy when I am happy (what more could anyone want?!)
  7. Rich maintains (big time) his erection with me.
  8. Loves me so much.
  9. I love Rich so much.
  10. Would give everything up for me.
  11. I am the most important thing in Rich’s life.
  12. I have found myself. I understand my head for the first time ever.
  13. I have lost weight and got fit.
  14. Realise how many people I have who care about me/us.
  15. We work well together as a team. Isn’t that what life is really about? Isn’t love just part of the equation?
  16. Rich would never do it again.
  17. Back, very closely now, with Beth. Better than we ever were.
  18. Have a better relationship with Tom.
  19. Rich treasures everything about us, every good moment that we have.
  20. Rich never wants to lose me.

I will use this list at times. But I am hoping that any future entries will mostly be positive (apart from the hormones!)

Reflections 2018

This list of positives show how I clung to anything to keep me in the relationship. I realised over time, and especially when I read my journal again years later, how many times i did this; and how many times Rich did it as well. I could see as I read my journal  how crucial all the small things were to get us to where we are today.

I have often said to other people hold on to really small things, don’t dismiss them, because they go on to make the big things, like little pieces of a jigsaw until in the end you can see the whole picture. It is easy when you are hurt to dismiss them, I know I did at times , but it is clear that my sub conscious mind made a little note of them because it is my sub conscious mind that I am sharing in my journal.

So my suggestion would be to write them down, so that when the demon tells you that you are right to tell them to ‘fuck off’ have a look at your list and remind yourself of the small things. (I especially love number 7!!) No seriously I love them all.

When I sit here now and I read what I hoped for:  That future entries would hopefully be positive it makes me smile, because I know that we were still at the very beginning of our journey to where we are now, and as you will see the highs and the lows just kept coming, as the next few entries will show……..

Moisy

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Journal entry: The things I wanted to believe…

 

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Monday 9th July 2007 

It’s done!!

We went to Nel and Gus’s, on Saturday, and, as usual, Nel and I chatted. In the evening when I had a drink I got upset, because it was on my mind. I said that I needed Rich (told Rich) to cuddle me and to be more affectionate to me. To not be afraid that I would pull away, and I swore on my mum’s grave, that I wouldn’t pull away if he did this.

When I picked him up from work that day he was telling me about Dave, and how they had both ended up crying in the van whilst out on a job; him because he could “lose me over a fucking old shit”. I liked it when he called ‘her’ that. On the Sunday he was talking about ‘her’and again called ‘her’ a “fucking old shit.” that made me feel better.

My hormones had also calmed down, and I realised that what I had said to Rich, about showing me more affection in some ways was one of the keys to overcoming it. I knew that he was worrying about what was on my mind, and that wasn’t helping him; I knew that I had to speak to him that day.

I spoke to Auntie Edie and Beth and they both agreed that this was something that had to be discussed, no matter how painful, to enable it to be boxed up and put away, because if I did not discuss it I would never move on.

Beth suggested that I should show Rich what I had written in my journal. I don’t think he could have coped with it all; but when we did talk I read him some bits, about closing his eyes and things like that, and the entry where I had said I didn’t want him anywhere near me on Friday, to show him how it was affecting me.

On the Sunday when I picked Rich up from work we went down to  a quiet lane  to chat; Rich thought that I was going to tell him to go (Rich’s biggest fear, as he always thinks that.) We talked about  the sex with ‘her’.

I know my husband well enough to be able to tell from his face if he is lying. I made it clear, that if there is one thing we have both learnt from this it’s that I am the kind of person that needs to hear the truth, no matter how unpalatable. That is how I live my life – to deal with things head on.

Rich told me that throughout the whole time with ‘Her’ Rich could not maintain a hard on. He swears that he did shut his eyes and thought of me; but that sometimes that just made things worse. That ‘she’ would get annoyed and say that he needed to learn to relax with ‘her’’; Silly bitch! ‘she’ just couldn’t see what was under her’ nose!

I said about it making me feel better when he called ‘her’ a slut, and reminded him of when he said he didn’t hate ‘her’; but he interrupted me and said that was a long time ago (13th of June – it just seems so long ago because we have come so far forward.) That now he does hate ‘her’, “Fucking hated ‘her’”, for coming between us, for everything ‘She’ did to me, because he has had to fight so long to keep me; might still lose me because of ‘her,’ that he really hates ‘her,’ hates ‘her’ partner for the way he told me, for the way he kept coming over to tell me things, trying to make sure Rich never got me back.

I said to Rich how both of them, and Rich to some degree, never took into account me, my life, or my feelings; but that with those two their biggest mistake was to underestimate me. They grossly underestimated me; Rich said “They sure did, so did!”

I promised Rich that was it now, door closed. I thanked Nel and Beth. I know, now, it is time to move on.

We toasted our future in the garden and Rich said “Thank you.”

I did mean it. But then I found myself asking about why he started to see ‘her’ again in March; it freaked Rich out.

But we have moved on, need to move on. It will still come up from time to time – sometimes Rich will need to talk about it (but he doesn’t realise it now.)

I need to have the courage of my convictions. I want to close that door now, move forward now. To do that I must not only ensure all the lids are on the boxes but close the cupboard door.

I must look at all the positives from now and use them as my tools. I will also continue to keep my journal until I no-longer feel the need. But hopefully most of what I write will be positive.

 

Reflections 2018

At the time I wrote this entry I wanted to believe Rich, I wanted to believe that all that he was telling me was true; I needed to do this at this time to stay. I still think I was right to do that because I would no be here now if I hadn’t.  But now, eleven years later I dont’ think that what he told me was true. I think he told me what he thought I wanted to hear because he wanted to keep me; and with eleven years of hindsight he was right.

For years after getting back together I would always say that if I don’t know about something I can’t deal with it. That is true for many things like illness, money, even feelings today; but at that time I know that I could not have handled all of the truth, and that I needed to let time pass to be able to then look back and realise that what I thought was important, the truth that I had to know, wasn’t important at all, But only time could give me that. /

When I read the part where I said that I knew my husband so well I laughed. I could tell when he was lying to me!! Really! I want to say to that Moisy he had been lying to you for a year girl, he was lying to you now. For different reasons this time, to protect you, but he was lying to you all the same!

Some of what Rich had said may have been true: I can believe that he lost his erection with ‘her’, but not every time, because I know now that was a lie! He told me that later in this journal! Of course it fucking was!

I believe that she said he should learn to relax but the facts were that Rich still tried to have sex with ‘her’ he still wanted to to have sex with her. That one is not a unicorn of truth, it’s a fact!

When I visited the counsellor on my own back in the May (see Counselling it is he who should be sorry ) the counsellor explained to me how many people who leave their partners want to keep the other person happy; because in their mind they have already ruined everything with one person, so they need to keep something to prove to themselves that they are not going to fuck everything up!  I listened to her, she was telling me the facts, even though they were painful to hear.

I needed to hear Rich tell me that he could see through ‘her’; see how ‘she’ had manipulated and played us, to ruin what we had. So when Rich told me he hated ‘her’ that really helped me; because the way that he said it I knew that was the truth. This was a massive thing for me, a big thing for me to hold on to.

When I read this entry I smiled because I have written how we toasted our new life together in the garden, how I told Rich that ‘was it we were moving forward’, and literally within half an hour I had brought something else up! I can remember Rich’s face, and I understand why he wanted it to all just go away, but sorry it doesn’t work like that and this was still early days!

Drives you insane though doesn’t it?! So I am highlighting this part because this is the normality: it will come up over and over again until one day (if they allow it to) the person who  has been betrayed will just think ‘Fuck this, I am bored with it now!’

This conversation was also an important one for me because I had started to recognise my own strength; and that even though they had all the players in the play, they had failed to recognise the strength of the leading lady. Me!

There is a bit more to this entry, but I will blog it separately because I know a lot of people are tying to follow the principle of small steps. Look out it will be coming soon.

Moisy