So this is a blog where I talk about marriage, infidelity, the complexities of relationships, and all of my swirling emotions about the former topics. At this point I’ve had 5 posts that touch on various parts of how I am feeling. In the last two days I’ve talked about the story of when I first met my husband, a quick overview/ snapshot of how I got here, and the 1 year anniversary of D-Day – that final moment when I drew a line in the sand and we started really changing our marriage. You might be asking yourself why I haven’t told my entire story yet. If you are anything like me you want to know all in the gory details. I don’t blame you.It’s human nature, as twisted and morbid as it sounds. Everyone cranes their necks as they go by a car wreck trying to see what happened, hoping no one was seriously hurt, at the same time looking for the crushed metal and broken glass. I’m not judging you. There is something perverse about destruction that draws us in. We want to see. We want to know. We want to find something that convinces us it couldn’t happen to us or think about how lucky we are that we’re okay. Sometimes we just want that nice adrenaline rush like at a NASCAR race when you see a car crash into the wall or burst into flames. Don’t say you don’t know what I mean. Other times it comes from a place of true compassion. We want to connect with other people who are hurting, help them feel better, and sooth ourselves in the process.
No matter your reason, I understand the desire to know more details about what really happened in my marriage. After all, I did start this blog and offer up my innermost thoughts and feelings. Last night I actually laid in bed asking myself why I haven’t done it yet. I came up with a few reasons, some more valid than others. Here they are in no particular order:
Depression. After a night of digging around the message board while my husband was at school I finally admitted the truth to myself. I am depressed. At first I told myself that the sadness and hopelessness and loss of energy were all just temporary symptoms stemming from all the ugliness I was going through. It is true that all those emotions and more happen when you find out your spouse has been unfaithful. But my situation is improving, things are looking much better than they did, and I have a lot to be happy about. I’m just not. I had struggled with depression before, and it is something that’s in my family history. I just didn’t want to admit or accept it. But I know now it’s true. I am pervasively sad. I feel paralyzed by it – I don’t want to do anything but sleep and maybe cry, although sometimes I don’t even have the energy for that. Writing and this blog are the first things I’ve been really interested in for I don’t know how long. I’m always tired, but sometimes I can’t go to sleep. I can’t concentrate, I’m having headaches every day, and the list goes on. So the prospect of sitting down and reliving everything, going through the whole sordid story, just seems impossibly hard, emotionally draining, and too much to handle.
Fear. I am afraid to put it all down on paper and take a hard look at it. I am afraid of being judged. I am afraid that people will think I put up with too much, that I’m weak or stupid or any number of other things. I am also afraid of the reverse – that what I think is traumatizing is something everyone else thinks I should be able to easily get over. I am afraid of painting my husband in a very negative light. He really is a good man despite what he put me through. He can be so kind and thoughtful, he is hard-working, tender-hearted, emotional and yes also hot-headed, stubborn, and sometimes (in the past) deceitful. I am afraid of getting it all wrong. I’m afraid that I will sit down, write things out and just never be able to convey the facts and emotions clearly. How can I get it right when there are so many things at play?
Embarrassment. This goes hand in hand with the fear. I am embarrassed that I let this happen to me. I know, I know – it’s not my fault, I’m not to blame, etc., etc. I’m not downplaying that (even if it may seem that way). I know that what he did is on him. If we had problems (which I know we did) then he had a ton of options other than what he did. I know he should have talked to me and we could have done this counseling and work on our marriage without going through all the mess that came before. But I still had a certain picture of myself in my mind – who I was, what kind of woman I was, what I would and wouldn’t accept in a relationship. This whole thing blew that out of the water. It is embarrassing to admit that I knew what was going on for a while before I confronted him. It is embarrassing that I believed some of the lies he told me that were so obviously false. It is embarrassing that I was so passive in my relationship that I accepted things I had told myself I never would. Telling the whole story will make me look bad – in my own eyes if in no one else’s. I have to accept all of my faults along with his and all of the moments in the journey where I could have changed the story – cut it short, started the healing process earlier, communicated better, and on and on.
Journalistic Pride. I’m not sure if that’s even a thing, but I couldn’t think of better words. I don’t want to spill all the beans right at the beginning and then have nothing else to talk about. I know that really is not likely considering the topic and all of the feelings I have. But I worry that if I give away all of the facts at first then there won’t be anything to my “readers” to come back for. If you already know the story and all the juicy plot twists, why would you keep coming back for all the emotional crap? Even I don’t like that part.
So with all of that said, I think I will continue giving you bits and pieces here and there. It will make it more emotionally manageable for me and hopefully for interesting for you. It will also allow me to really examine each part of the story independently. To work on the emotions, the right voice and tone for each section, and to give a more complete, 3-D version of what happened. More pieces of the puzzle will come later.