I have been with my husband for 20yrs. Since we’ve been together, he has always cheated. He cheated on me with women we knew as friends, [he cheated on me with] my sister [with whom] he had kids, and most recently last year [he cheated on me with] my mother.
Even after that I forgave him and stayed with him. He then again started creeping on Facebook commenting on other women's pictures. I decided, if you can't beat them then join them. I grew tired and cheated on him. Now we have been arguing day and night. I want out but then I feel like I still love him...
What could be going on with me? I sometimes feel stuck. I think any women in my shoes would have left a long time ago.
I’m torn between wanting to shake some sense into you and not wanting to make you feel the way every other important person in your life makes you feel.
You could spend the next 20 years pondering what is wrong with you and risk coming up empty handed, or you can accept the fact that you – not in the plural sense but in the singular - cannot rely on your feelings to guide you through life, because doing that has brought you to this very moment.
What I mean by this very moment is: You’ve managed to stay in a relationship with a man who has degraded you in ways that call into question whether he’s a sociopath. Actually, strike that. A sociopath doesn’t have feelings. This man’s actions do appear to be fueled by emotions - hatred. For you.
That the women he selected to fuck include your mother and your sister is unthinkable to me. This is why I say he hates you. As I suspect they do as well.
You say that throughout the years, you’ve managed to forgive him. I think you’re confusing forgiveness with allowing yourself to be abused. You can’t forgive someone of an act that they continue to engage in.
I don’t know if I’ve ever suggested this in a blog post, but I say the following without hesitation:
Step away from that man. Step away from your mother. Step away from your sister. And any others who endorse or minimize the abuse you’ve endured.
If you have to, move away. It might be the only way for you to truly make a clean break. Then go into therapy. Find yourself a therapist who’s certified in EMDR, and pull all that trauma out by the root, one by one.
PS: Don’t leave without joining my tribe!