Journal Entry: March 31, 2014
Letter to my husband:
Thirty years ago you started courting me. My life would never be the same. I was not shopping for a husband and I wasn’t ready. After a mere seven months of knowing you, I fell in love. I fell in love with who I thought you were. Even though I was not thinking about marriage to anyone, I liked having you as my companion. When I became pregnant early on in our courtship, I had no idea what would become of our relationship. At first you ran away from the responsibility, and from me. We were only 20 years old. I get it. Our relationship was so new, you were so immature and dependent on your parent’s approval and their money. You could not imagine a life independent of them. They would never accept the predicament you found yourself in. I had not even met them.
When you came back to me, I could see that you cared and even though you were scared, you were beginning to show signs of real love. I became forever emotionally attached to you after the miscarriage. I was tired, and emotionally drained from the ordeal. I had no idea where things would go for us, but I was happy with you in my life. It wasn’t that I was oblivious to the fact that my roommate didn’t want you around or that after one visit to your parents it was obvious they didn’t care for me. I lived my life for me and felt confident with my choices. Despite many obstacles, mostly thrown up by your parents, our love blossomed.
Over the next 10 years, a lot would happen to us, both separate, and together. Both good, and bad, but we came out the other side with degrees, marriage, and two beautiful boys. This is what I knew and cherished. I cherished everything about our life together. Now, 20 years later, I am heartbroken. As you know, your betrayal has stolen my joy. You ripped away my foundation. You have left me broken and feeling alone. My insides ache for the marriage and husband I thought I had. I want to be whole again. I want to be happy.
I know eventually you will work hard for your recovery because the alternative for you is a life of shame, guilt, pain, and bitter loneliness, but there is absolutely nothing you can do to heal my wounds. You shared your body and soul with other women. You jeopardized everything due to weakness. You did not acknowledge your broken side and then you broke me. I have now read a lot about sexual addiction, but knowing about the addiction and healing from my pain are two very different things. We all have to be accountable. We cannot hurt people in pursuit of our own needs and then simply expect forgiveness. We cannot hurt people merely because other people hurt us. There are always consequences. Can we start over? I know you can start over, and I know I can start over, but can WE start over without me compromising a part of my soul? How strong am I supposed to be? I feel like this situation is eating me alive.
Three and a half months later I still picture you with them. No matter how many or how few times you were together with these women, it is killing me. One time would have been too much, but there were so many occasions, so many planes, so many hotels, so many beds, so much sex, and so much pillow talk, that you were willing to trade everything good in your life for the illness. I know you feel this great sense of relief and you are attempting to surround yourself with other people who understand your illness. That is good for you. Unfortunately, for me, your diagnosis and the first steps on your road to recovery aren’t really doing anything about the years of lying, betrayal, and hurt towards me, and the utter disregard for everyone around you in pursuit of your single selfish goal of sexual gratification. You getting help for yourself is great and all, but I am still completely broken and I need to be on a path of recovery. I feel like my feet are cemented to the floor and I haven’t even entered the path yet. For every minute, hour, day that I feel you make some progress, I slide further into the abyss. As we have discussed, you married the wrong person. I am black and white, right and wrong. When it comes to being kind and not hurting others, I am an elitist. I pride myself in doing the right thing. I would absolutely unequivocally never do what you did. I don’t care what was done to me. I am in my head all the time. I choose good. I am not sure I can be with someone who hurts people, and who specifically hurt me over and over. You made a choice to behave the way you did. People talk about starting over and their marriage being stronger than it was before. How could that be possible? I loved the marriage/life I thought we had before. You destroyed that. It was all a lie. The memory is tarnished. Why would I choose a life where I have to look into the eyes of the perpetrator and relive the agony every day?
From: your wife
In the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, I wrote this letter to my husband, and I gave it to him. I asked him why he had married me. If he desired other women, why did he ever get married. Why did he pretend that he cherished us and loved his life. Wouldn’t he have been better off, be better off, if he never married me at all.
He replied that I was his salvation and that he would be dead if he had never met me. I am not sure how I feel about this? I want to feel special, but I just don’t.