What Do We Want?

My wife is really opening up. The affair seems to have freed her to actually look into herself purely for herself. She has never really stepped out of ‘us’ to consider ‘me’ before. It’s eye opening to watch, and I’m so proud of her. I keep telling her that I don’t want her to hide herself from me and only tell me what she thinks I want to hear. I want to know her. What she wants. Ironically her constant hiding to protect her marriage drove it right off a cliff!

Ok it was more than that, but that was a big part. We are not vulnerable together. It was something I had in spades with Meredith, but I do not have with my wife. This is a huge topic that I will save for another time, but vulnerability is really important and was missing from our marriage.

What we are going to do is take a mental step away from our marriage, and make a list of things we each need in our primary relationship separately. As if we were looking for a date. We are going to be completely 100% wide open with each other no matter how it makes the other person feel. Then we are going to share them and talk about them.

I’m sure the items we discuss will be uncomfortable, but it will be a good exercise. The other side is that they will probably be in contrast to what we have. In other words a list like this will probably emphasize what we are missing in our current relationship.

Talking about all of this, my wife has been very explicit that she wants to do this, and then evaluate whether it makes sense for us to stay together or not. She is very focused on is being happy whether together or separate. It is blowing my mind how well she is dealing with the thought of us splitting up. She really wants us to be happy. I do too.

Also she has spent a lot of time evaluating her parents relationship and how unhealthy it was. Yes they stayed married for forty years, but most of those they should not have been. After forty years they painfully divorced. My wife does not want us to have that kind of relationship. Neither do I.

Overall I’m very excited to actually learn about my wife. That she will actually tell me what she wants. I have a feeling we will be out of step with each other, but it will be a breath of fresh air just to know who she is.

Lastly, she mentioned over and over yesterday how freeing it was too know of the affair. That it justifies the thoughts she has been having, and her actions going forward to society. If we split then it was her husband’s fault. If we stay it’s because she forgave me. All the uncertainty she had before has been made clear. She feels free to think about herself, just herself. I can understand and appreciate that feeling.

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7 thoughts on “What Do We Want?

  1. Do you think, perhaps, finally telling your wife the truth is what freed her to be vulnerable? It is very hard to share any part of yourself when you know your partner is not mentally with you and holding something critical back. As your wife even said – she KNEW – she just needed confirmation. I wish you both much luck in finding each other in this new path. What you’ve written includes a lot of potential.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Well she still has not been vulnerable and we were together 17 years before the affair without the vulnerability, so no. I don’t think it had any impact on that. I think it is getting her to think about her own needs and wants over our needs and wants. Which is good.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sometimes it takes a very harsh reality to push people into doing what they should do and I totally get how your wife not opening up to you would push you away. Been there, seen it, done it. When I split from my ex he said that if he’d known I would divorce him he’d of made an effort. Unfortunately I work in a different way so it didn’t help in my case, but perhaps in yours it will.

    Regardless, I have heard lots of instances where affairs and the reality of splitting up has given marriages that jolt they need to put things in order. I think when you’re in a long term relationship it’s easy to get lazy, not work on things, and in some ways become distant from your partner. Whatever the outcome, you’ll both have learned a lot going forward whether that’s together or apart and you’ll probably find it constructive for future relationships whatever route you ultimately take. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  3. “If we split then it was her husband’s fault. If we stay it’s because she forgave me.” is this her words, yours, or you paraphrasing something said?

    I’m not comfortable with the thought process being used there personally.It’s as if without an affair, she had no justification in dissatisfaction in her marriage, or wanting to end it.

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    1. Her words – paraphrased of course. But she said that to me several times. It gave her relief to know this. It was more about the feelings she had about our marriage since the affair started.

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