Rereading a friend's experience (Junkfan) about how difficult it is to move on. I really identify with your difficulty. I have moments of anger, hate, sadness..... you name it, I've felt it... There's an emotional barrier to leave this story behind. Because I loved the way he made me feel about myself. Because the way he lit up being with me seemed like my highest achievement.... Because in conversation or silence, I felt like I didn't want to be anywhere else but beside him. Because I felt complete serenity and fulfillment in knowing I had found my best friend and lover in one. Oh! to die in his arms.... He will remain the ONE that "got away". He claims he feels the same, but I truly doubt that, or else, my standards are much higher. I was selfishly and systematically demolishing any good part of my marriage in order to make separation the only solution. I was in love and needed to leave as it was becoming preposterous to lead a double life. Financial, emotional, guilt, shame, pride... all of these emotions came into play for my xMM. I couldn't believe he was giving up on our mutual bliss. Having done that, I know he didn't really love me beyond his social sense of duty, which I can't fault... after all, we are both married and he couldn't see us thriving after destroying two families. Every other relationship I have had in my life has always been above board, except this one. It's brought me ecstasy but so much agony.... I see a lesson here that I didn't want to accept for the longest time but can't ignore anymore. Our love may have been real, but it was built in the air and our emotional roots counted for nothing in the face of real life and family. I read somewhere that you never move on, yet you can move forward, past it. If your life before had been rich and rewarding, you may choose to tap into that.. big time, now. After a time, although you always miss that symbiotic friend, you ultimately know they have to do what's right for them and we can't always have all that we want.... I think that Success emanates from "putting your money where your mouth is". If you take the chance, the rewards will be yours. If you sit it out, on the fence, thinking about it, trying to work out the pros and cons, you will remain in a bad state of limbo. That's what I've learned with the perspective of time lapsed.
He still contacts me and manages to destabilize me quite a bit with his "empty" love and friendship, but it's still better than not knowing him any more. After all, we do love each other. Still.
marmelade marmelade
51-55, F
5 Responses Aug 17, 2014

I can't stop thinking about your post. I have read it and reread it many many times. I love there's an emotional barrier to leave this story behind, our emotional roots counted for nothing, his social sense of duty... all things that I relate to, struggle with and feel or have felt. I am at my own crossroads. I can't seem to completely let go, yet I am also not fighting too hard to hold on. Someday my hands will no longer have the strength to hold onto my "empty" love. And his social sense of duty is stronger than any "love" we share. I know that now, as painful as that truth can be. I understand that our love would not have lasted beyond the difficulties of divorce, broken families, tarnished reputations. Perhaps the magic we shared behind closed doors, was never meant to leave the bedroom. But that is something none of us will ever really know.
I was watching Good Will Hunting. There is a scene where Robin Williams talks about his beloved. It made me cry, because he talked about sharing his love with her in a way us ap's can never have or will likely never experience.

Thanks for understanding Pencruz. Each time I reach a "boiling point" I churn out a new story.. I'm out of the affair, living my life, slowly relaxing back into my life, allowing myself to be at peace and let my own magic happen. It does. I'm grateful my H never learned about my affair, and was not knowingly hurt by it. For me, it was either this way, or leave, because of our issues... His friendship is very soothing right now and I am grateful for it. Had I been single, I would have dated and would have probably forgotten AP by now, but being married, it's a different journey. I felt that sense of duty as well and didn't leave. Being in a longstanding affair, we had fluid plans to be together, but he fell away through pressure, yet still calls to this day. So many people have advised me to cut this out completely as NC is the only way to go. I've never been able to delete, block or ignore him as I always wonder if I would have acted in the same way toward him, had I been the one busted.
Did I mention before that affairs suck? lol Hope your day is full of goodness Pen xoxo

I have been digesting your post for the day. It is so heartfelt and eloquent as all your posts are.
However, I am not sure I can agree with "empty" love. I believe that when faced with the difficult choice of hurting many (wives, children, families, and even for selfish reasons reputations) the path of perhaps "moral duty" often wins over "true love". Comfort knowing our lives are rich as you say vs. taking a leap of faith that life with the "one" can be as rewarding, lasting and loving and families, friends and self will forgive our actions is... a huge leap of faith and some may even say, selfish.
I agree, these relationships are built on air as you say. For when tested with real life decisions, I am afraid it would fail. Primary partners come first, family, work, friends, before the ap. I wish it were not true as we all struggle to let go, move on, and move forward.

Thanks for the good dose of reality Pencruz. It's more like an "emptied", hollowed out love. We avoid it as it can't be..

I guess my point, his love was/is not empty...but maybe you would not survive the hardships of divorce. If the two of you were both above board, I have no doubt you would be together. And being the ow wears thin, even in the best of circumstances. Some are built and content with having part of someone, while many of us are not. Always a hug to you Marm for this journey you are on. You have handled it with class and kindness.

I am hearting you for the thought you just laid out. It is true to me in the sense of the person thinking on holding to their "moral duty".

Lately, I ran into a few episodes of 'Extreme Makeover' on Oprah channel. The family they choose to give an Extreme Makeover (their house will get completely demolished and re-build with all the special wow elements, also customized to the family's needs).
Anyway, this show picks people who have special needs family members and who have come to a point when things are deteriorating around them.. money wise.. health wise, etc. They are at a point of collapse.

And watching that show, I thought of my posts on EP where I support the thought of "taking on the new path that presents itself over the years: the true love path".

I look at these families and see the sacrifices they made to keep the family together. I question, what if, if the husband or wife, takes off for they feel they have lost their zing to life with the partner and found it in someone else? How would it all justify itself?

I understand they continue making the sacrifices they have been making to get where they are.

I also cannot help myself to believe, that the setting can be also re-arranged in a form, even if split... people are perfectly capable of building new 'encapsulations' around themselves. Where they continue being a family unit, but now that family unit has extended to new heights, where their is sacrifice for their offspring, but there is also a touch of rewarding happiness left for the individual -- who has changed by natural cause -- within themselves.

I believe that if MM had met me before he had that family unit, it would be me. I don't just believe it, he told me that. I guess there was a reason why we did not meet then and why we met after.
I don't believe this is a test on our moral and temptation values.

There are many among us who have taken the leap towards that new faith and it turned out to be bliss. Only time was able to show that. Our love has the chance to last beyond divorce. I am not saying it is guaranteed, but some of us where there before and we know it from experience. You just have to be strong enough together. That is how we can move forward.

HOWEVER... lol you have to have the person who is willing to take that step. Can't be the sole warrior.

Much love to all my EP friends who are going through times of beating themselves up. There is light coming up... somewhere... I think I am seeing it :)


Sigh. I would like to believe that this can be true. That together, with alot alot of hard work, a respectful, happy, supportive and loving union for all parties can be had.
BUT, this is statistically speaking, often not the case. I am a hopeless romantic, don't get me wrong. And I have fantasized about such a life...but as time wears on, I realize the hurt and difficulties of such an existence may in the end not be as rosy as we dream it to be or one can be left standing alone having caused much hurt and damage to those around us.
I will forever hold onto my "hopeless" fantasy while at the same time, try to move onward. I can no longer continue to be "the side" dish. The after causes more pain than the momentary enjoyment.

Yes, pencruz. We cannot and we should not be the 'side dish'.

We give our trials and tribulations and we see where we stand. If there is no action, then we need to take action for ourselves. Nothing more we can do unless we accept being side dish.

But it is possible and most statistic doesn't come to these boards or at least they keep it secret not to look like they had a change-of-heart.

It is like the question to: How many servings of alcohol do you consume per week?

Guess what the most answered number is?

1-2 servings per week (or as some would norm as 'social drinker').

We had people in our research studies who showed high numbers on their liver levels, but still claimed they didn't drink more than a serving.
I'm just saying... stats can be a bit twisted.

hugs and love :)
Stay strong.

Lol, two glasses of wine (at least) a day...
Hugs back.

If you both left, what happened?

but? sorry i do not know your entire story, but your posts indicate you are with a new ap? no judgement, sometimes i need to see that my romantic view is a pire fantasy so i can let go.

I was very hurt for hurting my ex at the time too, but it was an inevitable move. He was my first man and after our child was born, he did have an affair or two, which he admitted when I was leaving. I knew about it, but it only dawned to me in recent years that he was physical with the OW.
Before then, I thought it was a romantic relationship, because to me, I had no idea how to be with another man...
but today I know... his affair wasn't just going to dinners and talking romantically.
Anyway, past is past.
My point is, this happens more often than it is talked about, because we do not want to hurt our partners and we do believe when we get married that is for life.

But life just happens.

lol I like pencruz's questions.
She is a straight shooter :)


Now my turn for exposé.
This happened 18 years ago. I also was caught by my xH.. it was a romantic relationship. Not physical at that point. It came out after maybe 2 months into it. Tapped phone. 17 years absolute loyalty to my ex. I wanted our marriage to work. We moved 4,500 miles away to start up anew.
About 2 wks into our moving away, I received a phone call from my current husband. And other incidences that made my stay a living hell. After 2 months, I left.
I didn't want to get married again. Something inside me kept telling not to, but my current H. kept insisting for 3 years. Then he confined me to SM.
I also met couples who left with their AP.

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I was reading some of Junkfan's stories myself today! How ironic. Hugs sweetie.

I was just going through similar agony in my head and somehow your post gave me some comfort. Just now, you are not alone and the situation we are in still has a long way to go with its up moments and down moments.

I get manifested by anger more often then I say and I keep fighting it off to give myself some peace. You know I clutch myself to those YouTube videos that teach me to center and love. To love the person I hate at that moment and those who teach to let go.

It is an inner battle, hitting close to home. Sometimes nothing makes sense. And then suddenly I feel all makes sense.

I would like to thank you for writing me not to give any decision in haste. Let yourself live for a while...

I keep reading what you wrote me. It calms me down.
Just let yourself live.

This weekend, I pulled out some significant anniversary about some past relationship. I didn't realize I was still hanging on to it, even after 6 years.
I let that ship sail for good. And what surprised me most was to find out, it was still lingering somewhere in the background.

So...since I know now how long it takes me to let go, I am in no hurry and will try to live my life by the presence.
There is nothing we can do to change other than live happily and that would be our revenge.

I've been watching and listening to your sites, sooo very soothing to the soul.... thanks for those Fmina xo

That is very sad. I had a affair with a married woman for 2 years. I was sad, mad and angry when it ended. But I do still have the memories of that time that I won't forget.