The process of reconciliation continued over the second half of the month. I ramped up my regimen of giving to my wife by surprising her with all sorts of things at various times of the day. I would also do some things regularly, like make her bed every night, draw her bath, leave sweets, magazines, or other small gifts by the bed in the living room. I was truly beginning to see some positive changes, but still she was so hooked on the affair that I knew I’d get no meaningful shift until the affair ended.
As mentioned in the previous post, the affair had already hit a major hurdle, and another one was brewing. Her original plan, to divorce me and be out of the house by the end of the year, seemed to be disintegrating. I had expressed on several occasions that I would not willingly cooperate with any divorce proceedings. Her original tack was to try to get some paperwork done via a paralegal organization, but that would have required my compete cooperation through divulging various forms of information. I refused to even look at the questionnaires she had printed out. She then resolved to do it herself. (As of this date, however, she still has done nothing.) I was hearing through the grapevine that her lover was feeling uncomfortable about her still living with me and there being no movement toward separation or divorce. He also apparently was telling her that she could not move in with him so soon.
So, she hatched a new plan, which was to go live with some friends a couple of blocks away. These aren’t so much friends as they are mutual acquaintances/colleagues, but somehow she felt she could confide in them. Apparently, she came clean about the adultery — as all adulterers eventually do — and they assented to let her stay with them for the month of January. This would give her additional time to separate from me. Suddenly, she had renewed vigor with her chosen “path”.
Around the middle of the month, she told me that she would be gone on her birthday, and that she planned on being away for Christmas as well. I asked her why she needed to leave for her birthday, and she said, “I don’t know,” so I suggested she think about it, even though I knew that would have no effect on her decision. I bought her the birthday present of her dreams, something she really wanted, and she was absolutely thrilled. We had a lovely birthday morning. Then, as I was about to leave for work, I told her I’d be cooking her a special dinner (I said this with full knowledge that she’d be leaving that day), and she reminded me that she would not be home that night. I let my shoulders fall, looked depressed, and told her that again I felt extremely betrayed and abandoned. This made her mad, of course, and defensive. I left the house.
When I returned, she had taken my gift and placed it back in its box, and left a note that apologized for hurting my feelings. I simply took the gift out of its box and quietly returned it to her closet. She returned the next morning, and I actually was driving down the street to go get coffee. I saw her get out of her lover’s car: they were about 10 feet away from me, right at the corner, and there is simply no way that either my wife or he did not see me. I even had to follow him down the street for 2 blocks, before I could leave our neighborhood.
She had brought home some gifts from him: an ostentatious bouquet of flowers, as well as some things he’d baked, and a small self-help book. She told me her friends had given her a party, there was cake, and so on. I knew it was all a lie. Eventually, one of the roses from the bouquet ended up in the kitchen window, and I removed it back to her office, telling her I felt disrespected. This behavior did not repeat again, despite her protests.
Then, a couple of days later, her affair hit another major obstacle. A highly disparaging message came in from her father, criticizing her conduct in the harshest of terms. This I’m sure got her really worried.
More momentum toward reconciliation occurred toward Christmas, and then she let me know that she in fact would be leaving. So, I decided it best to take care of my family, and to go out of town to be with them for a few days. The morning I left we had a gift exchange — she gave me a very nice gift, and I gave her a number of things that went straight to her heart. Still, she had to go be with her lover, though.
After Christmas, things continued to be more or less okay. We did have one argument, not because I even wanted to talk, but because she did, and she escalated. Even with the escalation, I got an apology from her not more than an hour later. I attribute this 100% to the marriage reconciliation program I had been working on for about 7 weeks at that point. (I should say that I have been implementing this program without her knowledge or cooperation; it’s just that effective that it yields results even if your spouse is not on board.) Then, once again, I was told that she’d be leaving me, this time for our anniversary, as well as for New Year’s Day.
Her father called the night before she left, and she had a teary, two-hour chat with him. She confessed pretty much everything to him (I could hear just about everything through the door, as our house is so small). It was clear to me that she was in a very fragile state, and had no confidence whatsoever. In fact, she told him this several times. We talked the next morning, and I laid out my vision for the future: that I could see a day when she would feel like the most treasured jewel in a man’s heart, and that that man would be me. She did not see things this way, asserted that she had “really tried” to make our marriage happen, and further had begun rewriting its narrative by telling me that she felt she had never actually been in love with me. Nevertheless, I planted the seed of that vision, and further told her that, at that point, I was very strong and confident, and knew that my moral compass would get me (or rather us) to that final destination — reconciliation. She told me that she “wasn’t sure” if she could fix things, and that she’d need to digest everything I had said.
Since I knew she’d be gone when I came back from work, and since she had previously stated that she had planned to move out at the end of the year, I told her that this was her house, and that she would always be welcome, and the door would always be open to her. This is an important message to deliver if your spouse is planning on separating and you simply cannot stop them from doing so.
I did buy her a card for our anniversary, and left a special, personal gift inside it. I put it in her purse before I went to work, figuring she’d discover it while she was gone, and hopefully in the presence of her lover.