The Beginning of Something Else

On June 1, 2007 I found out my husband and partner of almost two decades had been unfaithful to me since before our marriage, and had been having intercourse with prostitutes for 3 1/2 years. This is what happened next.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

So this is how it's going to be.

My son graduated from his 3rd year in school today. At his school, it's the end of House Group and the anticipation of Mountain Yard next year. As I sat at the ceremony I was overtaken by the heavy sadness that I had last week. I remembered sitting in the ceremony for the 2 years past, and how different I felt, how different my life felt. I felt like I might cry, which I really didn't want to do because then that has to be explained. And then I realized that really nothing was different - actually most things were the same, except that last year and the year before I just didn't know about it. Which of course wasn't any better, possibly worse because I feel like a fool for being so deluded for so long.

When I come face to face with a moment when I'm present to the lie that I was living before it is crushing. At the same time I feel the pain, I also know that I have the power to put it in the past. But right now is for feeling, not for forgiving. So I stay in the feeling as long as it lasts. Still waiting for it to pass.

When I told husband that I'd been living a lie for 5 years, he said he didn't think that was true, because he never lied about how he felt about me, how much he truly loved me. And I accepted that at the time. I know those years were full of genuine moments, days, weeks. But what I hadn't put into words yet was that there was an expectation that we'd set with each other that, while unspoken, unmonitored, persisted every day. Togther we had created an expectation of honesty and monagamy. And every day in which honesty was not present, whether an act of infidelity was committed or not, feels like it was inside the context of a lie. The lie that I thought my life, my relationship with my huband, was. And so I grieve. Each moment when I come face to face with the false reality that I was living inside of, it's a little death. I grieve those little deaths. The deaths of the moments I thought my life was at the hands of truth.

Halloween, the night before our anniversary, will be hard. I know he had sex with a prostitute that day last year. The day before our 9th wedding anniversary. I asked him about it sometime over the past week. He said he realized it only after he'd done it. And felt bad. But didn't stop. And didn't tell me. Kept stomping on the trust we'd developed. Lied every day, and allowed me to live in that lie. Not to mention the danger of disease, however unlikely, that was present. All the choices he made on my behalf without my knowledge...

Maybe that's were I'll access my anger.

My therapist said we'd work on a list of what will and won't work for me, what I need in order to stay in this relationship. I'm not one for setting conditions (I probably am and just don't know it but I'm writing from my own perspective so fuck it) but something that came to me is that I want to be reminded for the rest of my life that he hasn't forgotten about this, and shown regularly for the rest of my life that I'm loved and appreciated and respected, that it's worth it to him to be in this relationship with me. I don't want to dwell in this, but I want to know if what I think is going on is real or not. How will I? How will I know? I didn't this time. Sometimes Monday feels so far away. Good thing I'm going to Seattle this weekend.

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