Things we remember

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Bleeding hearts in the front garden

Full disclosure. I am going to admit straight off that this is a petty and immature post. I rarely feel this way, at least not anymore, but there’s something about being cooped up for weeks that has me tense and a bit ungrounded. I just had a video call with my doc and we are adjusting some of my medications. I’m having headaches every day, my blood sugars are off, blood pressure is a bit high, allergies are off the charts, trouble sleeping, mood is… meh.

She knows me well and says she believes most of my issues are stress related, other than the allergies. She did a little tweaking and doubled my anti-depressant. She wants me to increase my exercise. Yeah, me too. Who is this person who never had a depressed day in her life until discovery? Who am I?

Last week I ordered a couple masks in case I need to go out. I haven’t been in contact with the real world in 40 days. The masks are cloth, denim on one side and flannel on the other with adjustable straps. The company has moved their production to mask making only, and for every purchased mask, they donate a mask to a local care or medical center. I tried on the mask and took a selfie and posted it to Facebook and Instagram. There were a few comments about my eyes, because with the mask on, the eyes are pretty much all you see.

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Me, with my new mask.

I am the brown-eyed girl who always wanted blue eyes. Green eyes are cool, and rare, and we have some green eyes in our family as well (Irish and Welsh ancestors), but blue eyes mesmerize me. There are lots and lots of blue eyes in my Swedish ancestry. Both the brother and sister I grew up with have blue eyes. A number of my half siblings have blue eyes. I wanted at least one of my kids to have blue eyes, because why not, their dad does? Nope. Brown eyes it is. Interestingly enough, all four of our parents have brown eyes… both my parents, and Blue Eyes’ parents. Eye color is such a strange thing.

So, here’s the petty part. Blue Eyes’ last sex partner has blue eyes. When I asked him what he said to her, you know, to keep her coming back regardless of how poorly he treated her, one of the things he told her was how much he loved her beautiful blue eyes. Bummer for me. It’s one of those things that sticks with me. In my darker days, I wanted to just scream…. if you fucking wanted someone with blue eyes, why didn’t you marry someone with blue eyes. So silly of me. Betrayal trauma makes us say and do the craziest things. The truth is, this woman is mean looking and has beady little eyes, but yes, they technically are blue.

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Acting out partner on the top. Me on the bottom.

The photo on top is one taken of her for a corporate website maybe 15 years ago. It is such a poor quality, but totally representative of her and the only photo accessible on the internet. You can’t tell her eyes are blue in the photo, but really, who cares. She’s mean looking. She stalked me for months. I don’t care if her eyes are unicorn purple with sparkly bits and rays of sunshine shooting out of them. She’s a mean and messed up woman. I hate that I even know this person exists. The photo of me was taken this morning with no make up and no alterations. I need a facial, oy!

Anyway, I needed to know all these awful things about my husband’s addiction, and betrayal, but I hate that I needed to know and I hate that evil things happened behind my back. I really hate that when someone compliments my eyes, it makes me think of how my husband told some other woman that she had beautiful blue eyes, and then had sex with her.

Thanks for letting me get this out and for not thinking badly of me… or if you do think badly of me, I hope that you at least understand that l have my reasons.

54 thoughts on “Things we remember

  1. Why do you even give thoughts of her the time of day? It does not matter with whom your husband was unfaithful. He was the problem. Makes me think of that old unappealing show Jerry Springer where the cheating loser man would sit happily amused as his wife and lover scratched, swung and spit at one another — focus was all wrong: they both should have beat the shit out of him. She is meaningless. I suspect that if your husband cheated with a beauty that his infidelity would have made more sense to you and the fact that she is unattractive helps you see your husband as “sick”. In either case, I think focusing on her is a distraction and a sort of rationalization that serves to excuse his behavior.

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    • There are no excuses for his behavior and everyone knows that. I don’t “give thoughts of her the time of day.” It’s called betrayal trauma. It just happens, like bad memories. It rarely happens, but I process it here. I’m not a perfect human being. My husband is sick (no quote marks from me since I see it first hand). I don’t need excuses to understand sex addiction. I’m not focusing on her, but in fact on what he said about her that affects me, because HE said them. No doubt if she hadn’t been an evil, vindictive, stalking bitch, I wouldn’t have written much about her at all over the past six years. She was an object. There is no simple, overnight fix for finding out from some random woman that I had been systematically lied to and blamed for my husband’s bad behavior, for decades. Jerry Springer was not real. It’s a fake reality show meant to entertain people. My life is real and this is my safe space to write out my feelings. I admitted from the get go that comparing and contrasting was petty, but so what. This is my space to talk it out. From your comment I’m guessing you don’t have experience with sex addiction or sex addiction induced trauma or you might be more understanding. Nothing I write here lets my husband off the hook for any of his dishonesty, betrayal, or the heartache he caused.

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    • Your comment feels like you are pointing blame at the betrayed for our trauma and all that entails. I place the blame squarely on my husband for his betrayal and lies and manipulation etc.
      That doesn’t mean that I still don’t get angry at the women who willingly entered into relationships with a man they knew was married. And that doesn’t mean that even though I have been through three and a half years of healing and recovery from betrayal trauma and don’t think about it constantly like I used to, that it doesn’t still pop up in my head because of triggers or recurring trauma or whatever occasionally. I appreciate that Kat is honest in her blog about what she’s feeling. It helps me in my recovery to read an honest account from someone who understands betrayal trauma.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t think you’re being petty at all 😊.

    I’m a photographer. I’m insanely drawn to eyes, there’s no other way to put it. Whenever I have a model in front of me, it’s all about the eyes for me. There have been times there is something so off in someone’s eyes, I have no connection whatsoever and the shoot kinda fails. Let’s just say she is not photogenic at all 🤢

    You’re beautiful Kat. Inside and out.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree the eyes are a place of connection, or not. And like Paula commented, it’s not really about the color as there are gorgeous eyes of all colors. When I FB stalked the other woman (not proud, she blocked me so I had to create a whole separate persona) even a “friend” of hers called hers “evil” and “beady.” Hmmm. Again, my husband was sick. It was never really a competition and it was never about me, but it feels icky all the same. I hope you are holding up, under the circumstances. Big hugs! 🤗❤️

      Liked by 2 people

  3. LOL BE’s acting out partner was Donald Trump?!?????!

    OK I know it wasn’t, but dang I really did think that was a pic of DT until you said it was her a.k.a. .Sasquatch 🙂

    Thanks for the laugh. But honestly your eyes are freaking gorgeous

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Jesus. No comparison. The woman that my husband spent an entire long weekend sexting with (and was planning to meet for lunch) was not an attractive lady either. Of course in therapy we learn that looks have nothing to do with SA. My husband didn’t see a photo of her (she was not the pretty 18/19 year old he dated in college, that is for sure!) until I showed him one that I had found on Facebook. Yes, I did creep her page. He was clearly surprised at how “unrecognizable” she was. Then he reminded me that it was the words and the fantasy and the lust he was chasing…not the person. He could have been sexting with a 400 pound bald guy with horns growing out of his head and been just as happy. Regardless of how ugly she was/is (inside and out) it still made me feel unattractive, unworthy and not enough. Understanding SA and regaining my confidence has fixed that though, for good. I hope every woman who has had to endure the behaviour of a SA (or a cheating partner/spouse) finds her self esteem and confidence and wraps them in shatter proof glass. You are beautiful, without a doubt, inside and out.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Well, thank you SW. I wasn’t fishing for compliments, but I appreciate the sentiment. She and I are polar opposites. It took me a while to realize, regardless of what we look like, that what my husband suffers from includes a sort of fantasy driven fugue state in which he obviously can’t see what is right in front of him. 🤗❤️

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      • “fantasy driven fugue state” – appropriate description – I had never even heard of the term “fugue state” until I saw Breaking Bad. And Walter’s was fake, but still the dissociation from reality? Yep. I think I read in one of the bazillion SA/betrayal books that the “draw / lure / lead up” gives more dopamine hits than the act. I can see how that could happen with texts to an AP. I think for my husband, it was the “on-line shopping” — yuck — reading reviews of the women. YUCK

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        • I have heard that from others… that reading the reviews is a big turn on. BE had to have been seriously deluded by his addictive state to rationalize sex with that woman. He does admit that the texting and emailing, maybe even phone calls were the more addictive part… once they had sex, the spell wore off. He’s the idiot that took her on business trips and had to deal with her craziness once the fog lifted. 😳

          Liked by 1 person

      • I think they don’t realize it when they say it. I regret I asked for certain pieces of info that traumatized me more. But we don’t know what we’ll regret, and sometimes we want/need to know something… ugh. Tough.

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        • The fact that they don’t realize what they are saying is so painful is part of the shock of it all. How could they not understand? It takes a while to process how immature they are in many ways. I needed to have answers to my questions, but a lot of that for me was him proving he was actually able to be honest. Most days/weeks/months I’m not triggered at all, but during shelter in place, some things have gotten under my skin. ❤️

          Liked by 1 person

          • I’ve needed to confirm honesty too. It’s safety for me. I started to trust him again, and then his ongoing use of porn-substitutes came out last July, so he hasn’t really been ‘sober’ very long. Granted, his in-person stuff hasn’t happened for almost 5 years, but I need to be careful for myself.

            I think the sheltering in place has been a struggle for so many, and perhaps worse for those with a trauma history, depression history, anxiety, etc. One of my friends mentioned that 2 of his friends committed suicide in the same week (recently – during CVD19).

            We all need to reach out to those we love. We can’t be with them physically, but any way I can “be there” for someone is all I can do, and I feel compelled to do what I can. ❤

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  5. Thank you for this post! I have been feeling the same lately and couldn’t figure out why. It feels like my “trauma brain” is back and has taken hold. It was pretty bad this last weekend. There were triggers around every corner. We were sitting and watching a Netflix show and I was getting increasingly angry at the main character as I watched him manipulate and destroy lives around him. All I could think of was my husband telling me how he never asked the women he met in person to meet with him. But he manipulated them to the point that they would suggest it. It’s still so difficult (and I’m almost four years post discovery) to know that my husband was someone else completely in his addiction. And, no, that doesn’t mean I have compassion for these women. They all knew he was married. I haven’t hit the point in my healing that I have compassion for any of them.

    Liked by 3 people

    • You are welcome, Lucy63! As beleeme says, it’s being written about, how being effectively in lock down is bringing up old traumas. I don’t feel really horrible, just frustrated. Letting things get to me that might not otherwise. Likewise with me, triggers around every corner, but most that I have metabolized and don’t normally bother me six years in. Being forced to shelter in place is making me feel like a horse about ready to bolt the barn. I’m going to kick up my meditation and calming practices a bit and put some stronger parameters around my “me time.” I’m not sure you ever need to feel compassion for the others. My goal is to not think of them at all! ❤️

      Liked by 3 people

      • Yes, the same for me. Most of these things wouldn’t bother me in “normal” times but I keep finding my mind going “there” a lot more lately. I like your self care plan. There are some benefits to sheltering in place that I am discovering lately. I find that when I am forced to slow down I can rediscover some of me and what I loved before it was pushed to the side while I was in the midst of betrayal trauma.
        I have gotten much better about not thinking of those women. They lived inside my head for probably a year and a half before I had a total breakdown and finally realized that they still had power over me while I obsessed over every detail. This past weekend it wasn’t so much the women but those things my husband did to keep his secret life: the manipulation, gaslighting, lying, cheating etc. that was triggering me. Talking to a friend, writing in my journal, and processing why it was happening is helping me get through it. So it was helpful when I read your blog and realized I wasn’t alone. Thank you ♥️

        Liked by 4 people

  6. I feel all of this. It’s not petty. It stings when we know that our partners fawned over certain traits in others that just don’t match us. Even if they were just spewing BS to get laid, those things feel like little victories handed to the OW. (Well, that’s why it stings me, at least.) It’s especially true when they relate to things like eye color, skin tone/ color, etc. that we have no control over. It’s hurtful.
    xo

    Liked by 5 people

    • Everything they did was hurtful, but yes, the things we cannot change are especially cruel. I know my husband loves my eyes, it’s not really about that. The betrayal trauma leaves those stabs of insecurity where there weren’t any before. It astonishes me to this day how different my husband and I are. Even if I was capable of such cruelty (cheating), when recounting the story, I would still be aware of whether what I was saying was so hurtful as to leave it unsaid, not to embellish on it! I know I asked for the truth, but I also know there are so many things, details, facts, that he didn’t share and yet he decided to share the ones that he should have known would hurt. Even if he felt like he had to say those things to get laid and keep her coming back for more… spare me. All these kinds of truths came out right at the beginning. Things like “it was just sex.” “I told her her breasts turned me on.” “I told her she made me hard just thinking of her.” ACK!!! The reality DEFINITELY does not match the fantasy. Of course I know nothing he said made any sense at all. Ha, I’ve been writing for six years and covered everything over and over and yet. There it is! I just want scream! I HATE PANDEMICS! {{{{hugs}}}}

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    • My hub got laid b/c he handed over money and they were paid whores. He looked at it as a clean transaction / no relationship / no nothing. He used fake names.

      What gets to me is what I “imagine” him doing when he was with them.

      It’s all so YUCKY. BLECH.

      Liked by 3 people

  7. I think it would be almost impossible not to hold on to anything we believe made our husbands choose somebody else. It feels like that info is ingrained in our brains.
    Even if, rationally, we know it’s about the thrill and not the person – or any attribute – emotionally we hold onto that superficial stuff.
    It’s like a knife being pushed in and slowly turned. Anyone who’s been betrayed has experienced that!
    Also, I don’t think it matters what others think of us. The fact is, our husband mentioned that trait … So it’s a trigger, and will also be a sore point.
    It’s even worse if it’s something we wish we had, and something we have absolutely no control over. We feel helpless. We feel inadequate. And we know it’s something we can’t ever hope to change.
    Urgh … it’s horrible. The fallout just goes on and on 😦 Thinking of you Kat …

    Liked by 3 people

    • Before betrayal, I appreciated things about other people. Not so much that I wanted them for myself, but I could definitely appreciate that what someone else had was pretty or handsome, at least in my mind. I never felt less than though, until my husband cheated and told another woman that he loved her and this and that. Whether he was just saying those things to feed an addiction, or not, it hurts to my core. The insecurity comes solely from the trauma. It truly is the fallout of their actions and the never ending thoughts of how he could do such things and not think of me. I cannot imagine lying in bed with another man and telling him he has gorgeous blue eyes, or great abs or whatever. How horrifying. I would be sick to my stomach. I could’t do it. That’s the part that still confuses me. I say “who am I?” But in fact I’m pretty sure I mean “who is he?”

      Liked by 4 people

      • Yes. That’s the truer question. And it’s scary to realize the person you’ve been so real and transparent with acted in such mystifying ways. There are aspects to them that are so completely shocking you almost can’t believe it’s possible. Actually, the truth is it’s terrifying.

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  8. Yes to what HRC said – the ‘shelter-in-place’ has been bringing up a lot of past trauma for people – I just read an article on that; I think it was posted on The Trauma Project (FB site – quality – Canadian).

    I think I complimented your eyes and I know I complimented your son’s eyes and now I feel bad. Of course I didn’t know it was a trigger. OY. Anyway, I agree with HRC on the eye thing, too. It’s not necessarily the color; it’s the soul coming out of the eyes that makes them beautiful. My husband has blue eyes. On a sunny day – it’s like the clear blue water in an exotic location. My dad has the same color. Miss my dad. Anyhow, depending on my husband’s mood, his eyes can be so lovely and soulful or look dark and beady (sp?)

    I LOL’d at the unicorn sparkle sunshine comment. Sometimes, we do just need to get that stuff out of us. But the way you worded that was funny. You have a way with words.

    You know this – you know BE didn’t marry an object with an eye color. He married you for because you are an amazing woman. Some people do marry an object. Never lasts long. I admit that I get a similar trigger (physical attribute). It happened this past week for me. His thing was women with black/brown skin. He also “shopped” for other specific types. Whatever. It was like a thrill ride in a car. Hired women. You’ve seen my pic. I’m Caucasian, brunette, with a nice smile and hazel eyes. I’m real.

    That’s what they really wanted / needed — a woman who was real (and really, really strong). Some guys probably never learn the love of a talented, faithful, smart, beautiful woman, but I think our husbands know what treasures they have.

    Liked by 5 people

    • I think for me, the feelings are coming from having some of my choices taken away. Like I want to just run away, but know I can’t. I do think I will be making a trip to the beach house soon. I can do it safely and it will give me the change of scenery I desire.

      You are so right, beleeme, that what they went after in their addiction was just an object. The way BE’s addiction played out, he didn’t necessarily choose beautiful objects, he just made the objects available to him fit his fantasy. So not real. So not healthy and not right and yes, he married me because I am a lot of really good things. Just like you for your husband. Their addiction is an illness. Unfortunately, the trauma isn’t practical or mature. It’s scared, irrational, and debilitating on some days.

      You didn’t trigger me and thank you so much for the compliment. I do think my boys have amazing, expressive, compassionate brown eyes. And yes, I do believe my husband knows what a treasure he has… the fact that he can read my posts and not go into a big black hole of shame at what I write shows me that he realizes how broken he was and he understands my writing things out helps me make it right in my head. xoxo

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      • 110% that trauma is debilitating. It’s not in our frontal lobe (logic). But there’s a reason it warns us – danger – perceived or real.

        I’ve made so much progress, but it can come back, especially in Mar/Apr. If I look back, though, I’m not having nightmares and other things that happened in previous years.

        It upsets me a great deal, too, that I wasn’t able to make an informed choice. If our husbands were alcoholics, we’d know, and we could have chosen to deal, help, or leave. That is the insidious part that (IMHO) causes trauma. Our reality was warped!

        Jelly of your beach house. We can drive a few minutes to Lake Ontario, or walk to the Niagara River (water!!!), but we don’t live on the water. When we travel (rare), I reserve rooms right on the ocean. ❤

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  9. The pettiness is one of the shitty things that comes with this territory. Be kind to yourself.

    Lockdown has caused all kinds of emotions. Most quite peaked. I’ve had euphoria, and deep sadness…

    I’m glad you were able to blog about it, helps get the toxins out.

    And I know that you know you are completely beautiful, inside and out. Those comparison pics are on point!

    I have green eyes, and have never really seen why people rave about blue. Eyes are not beautiful because of colour. There’s way more to it. I’ve seen pissy, pale blue, and stunning watery blue. Dark, sexy, sultry brown (you!) And everything in between.

    Genetics are weird. Rog also has green, and both our girls have green. Son has blue. BG has piercingly blue eyes, cornflower blue. Would have been interesting to see how he’d bred, given the chance!

    Liked by 5 people

    • Honestly, it’s not that being homebound is so bad. We have a beautiful home, our business is intact, and we are not wanting for anything, other than normalcy. Our weather has been lovely (although that means allergies). I am grateful for all I do have, it just seems everything feels a bit off. More so for you since you aren’t actually at your home, I would imagine, although you are in a beautiful spot. I’ve always been able to blog about just about anything, so why not now. It feels immature, but it is real.

      I have always been enamored with blue eyes, but like you say, not all blue eyes. It seems we often want what we don’t have. Kind eyes come in all colors. Two of my sisters (with different mothers) have what I call cat gray/blue eyes. Wholly compelling. Some days very blue, other days a sort of sultry gray, but the same. One sister has eyes that go between green and blue, very interesting and beautiful. Both my step parents have green eyes. My step dad is Welsh and Scottish, my step mom, Norwegian and Swedish. My eyes have captured the hearts of a few… one boyfriend saying my eyes had him under a spell. LOL!!! Of course I remember the things Blue Eyes said, in his addiction, that he found compelling in the other women… of course big boobs and blue eyes will stick with me as they are things I don’t have.

      What I do have is plenty though, and I know that. I hate the lingering bad feels. I need to see a picture of BG’s eyes. And funny, I don’t remember Rog’s eyes at all, but for some reason I thought they were blue? ❤

      Liked by 4 people

      • I hear ya! I’m quite the homebody, so being home (as such) isn’t difficult. It’s more the loss of food options, seeing a movie, getting a haircut, lol.

        I still have waves of pettiness. I never used to be a mean girl. But I have picked so many holes in Leanne and Trinket’s appearances, personalities, it’s so small. I have the moments, cry, spew it out, whatever, then reground myself in what is important, and who I REALLY am, without the petty snark.

        I agree entirely about grey eyes, my Mum had green/grey, and they were mesmerising.

        My exes (and current) also all comment positively on my eyes. Kind of to the point where I think, hmmm, it’s a line. But I think they are probably one of my better features.

        We all fantasize about the things we do not possess, it’s human nature. I wish I had the body of a 20 year old model! Bugger.😜

        Liked by 2 people

        • I know it sounds immature for us to compare and condemn “the others,” but in both our cases all of these women knew our men were taken. I don’t want to put them down to make myself feel better, but there is a point where the pain takes over and I just say eff it. She doesn’t even know I’m saying these things, so it is totally a reflection on me and how the betrayal has negatively affected me. We’re human after all. It just burns. She does have beady little eyes and mean looking face though. That is true. 😉

          xoxo

          Liked by 2 people

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