I shouldn't like what I've become. I should feel bad, but I

I shouldn't like what I've become. I should feel bad, but I don't. It's been a year and a half since I left my wife after finding out about her affair. Everything is finalized, but I can't get close to people. I can't form relationships. There is nothing left inside me.

Right now I'm stringing along a mother of 2. Three nights ago I slept with an engaged woman (not the single mother). I can't even fake empathy anymore. After the engaged chick started crying and saying she was a horrible person for having cheated with me... AGAIN... and that she wanted to off herself; I couldn't be all like "ohhh, no don't beat yourself up." Do you wanna know what I told her?

"Well, the jaccuzi suite is yours until the morning, I'd suggest sleeping it off and taking a bath. I'm going home."

She opened up about her feelings for me and it just made me feel... I don't know the word. Repulsed? Annoyed? Aggrivated? Like... "just shut the f*ck up and serve your purpose"?

And before the engaged woman, there have been several others. I whisper these sweet nothings and just manipulate every god **** situation I come across. GOD they're so f*cking easy, even the supposed loyal ones. They're easy like my ex wife was easy. Are there no good ones left? Each stupid b*tch in a relationship already that finds her way to my bed just makes me lose faith that much more in humanity.

Yes. I realize how stupid I sound saying they're the problem when I should be telling these women no. But... I shouldn't have to have the opportunity to tell them no. They shouldn't be barking around my door while they're in a relationship.

The day after the engaged chick, my best friend from high school, who enlisted with me calls and tells me about how his wife had several affairs and that they were going through a divorce now. That phone call should have made me look at what I had done the night before and want to stop.

And this girl with the kids, she goes out of her way for me. She brings me food to work, she cleaned up my resume, she really cares about me, but I'm feeding her this bullshit about not being ready to take things further all the while running through the rest of these skanks on the side. She doesn't deserve to be hurt.

I don't know who I am anymore. Back when I was married, this sort of behavior NEVER would have crossed my mind. I was faithful to a tee. I was devoted and loving... and now what am I?

1 Heart

man,you have some serious issues you need to work through. Get counseling, and help yourself heal. You are better than that. Only weak people go around hurting others just because they can.Think more of yourself, and have some dignity.

5 Hearts

I'm not doing it out of spite or because I can. It's just happening because I don't care enough to stop it. Does that make sense? And how in the hell am I supposed to think more of myself when my wife couldn't even do that. She left for a drug addict that lived in his mother's basement. I was supposed to have a partner, but she flaked just as easily as the girls I'm running across now.

I heard a saying once that went something like "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster." And I think the monsters won.

I don't want to be this guy. I used to pride myself on the fact that I was one of the few good men left out there, because at the time it was true. I want to feel something again other than frustration. I want that angel to come back to my shoulder because with the devil running things I ... don't see this ever stopping. And why should it? I'm getting what I want on my terms and I answer to nobody.

Also, my new insurance should be kicking in any day now (if not already kicked in last week) I'll schedule some counseling.

And for the record, my knowing this mother of 2 not deserving what I'm doing isn't because I feel bad, it's because I can see the situation and common sense dictates as such. I want to feel bad.

@Hrothg you are basing your self worth on how your ex treated you. You are worth so much more, you just can not see or understand that now. You do have control over how you treat others, your thoughts, and feelings. Right now, I do think you are out to hurt others for the sake of hurting your ex. None of those women are her and should not be punished for her actions. I hope you get things straightened out. You sound like you were a decent guy once. You could be that again, but first you have to shake the icy grip fear of feeling has on you.

You mention she left you for a drug addict , maybe her poor choice to have an affair and leave you is due her being on drugs also, just a thought.

@ Hrothgar ...

I will first say my post/comment is sent to you in support and kindness ... and not in judgement.

Though I have not heard it before ... I understand "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster" ... very well. When we have an enemy or perceived enemy ... the more we try and think like our enemy to understand and look for weaknesses in them it is possible to start and take on the traits of our enemy. Trying to understand our enemy can go too far ... as I am sure you are realizing.

You say ... "I shouldn't like what I've become. I should feel bad, but I don't." ... "I'm not doing it out of spite or because I can. It's just happening because I don't care enough to stop it." ... " I'm getting what I want on my terms and I answer to nobody."

However you also say ... "I don't want to be this guy. I used to pride myself on the fact that I was one of the few good men left out there, because at the time it was true."

As we face the challenges that life puts in our path ... we can become one of two things. We can become bitter to everything and to others ... or we learn from the pain and struggle ... and understand what compassion is ... to others and to ourselves ... especially if we did not understand it before. As I have taken inventory of my own pain and struggles through life ... of which there are many and some still continue ... I have never let them make me bitter other than temporarily. For you ... this can be temporary as well if you wish.

If I may quote "Led Zeppelin" (of all things) for inspiration ... "There are two paths you can go by - But in the long run - There's still time to change the road you're on."

You want to be "one of the few good men left out there" ... "AGAIN" ... or in a sense you would not be seeking an understanding of yourself at this time. Find that "good man" again ... and stop trying to convince yourself he is gone. You are evidently not truly happy being anything other than a "good man".

Recent events will actually benefit you because as you reflect on your own pain ... you will realize people suffer in many ways ... and you will realize the importance of compassion ... and being a good person. These women you have been with recently may also have their own pain ... and that is why they are acting out also in a bid to find understanding and solace. Maybe you could try and help them rather than potentially hurt them ... and hurt yourself in the process.

I wish you well on your continuing journey. Please take the right path. I consider myself a good man also ... and as you have said there are "few good men left out there" ... I would like to encourage you to re-join "the few of us".

6 Hearts

@ Hrothgar make some changes, be honest with yourself about what is motivating you to behave this way. You know better, so be better.

1 Heart

Hrothgar, I'm so sorry you are going through this. A couple of thoughts came to my mind when I read your post:
1. Are you subconsciously finding ways to keep a secret wedge between you and the single mom, making sure you don't allow yourself to have feelings for her, ensuring you protect yourself from getting hurt again?
2. Are you "testing" all of these other women to see how many of them will remain faithful to their significant others in a way of proving to yourself that all women are bad and thus, the single mom will also be bad and can't be trusted? I have already gone through the list of all of the men in my life from my dad to my husband to my guy friends and listed all the ways that they have wronged me, and thus "all men are bad". (This isn't true, but it was my initial reaction).
3. Are you punishing these other women by refusing emotional support because you can't punish the woman who truly hurt you and deserves it?

My heart breaks for you, it truly does. Being betrayed changes who we are to the core, there is no denying that. But clearly you are a strong man, you are a good man with a good heart who deserves better for yourself. Try, as hard as it may be, to step back and consider what you get out of your behaviors. Write them out, and analyze them one by one. For example, when you told the engaged girl to stay in the hotel as long as she wants and you were leaving, what did you get out of it? A sense of power and control maybe? Try to find patters in what you "get" out of these situations, what void are you trying to fill? What, in the depths of your soul, that may not be ready to admit to yourself yet, might you be needing?
Lastly, it seems you are feeling guilty over what you are doing to the single mom, even if you say you have no empathy. "She goes out of her way for you", "she doesn't deserve to be hurt", "you never would have considered this before". Acknowledging these things is a positive thing and it shows that you DO have empathy, even if it doesn't feel like it. If she is a good woman, and it sounds like she is, you owe it to yourself and to her to cut things off, or be honest with her about what you've been doing and allow her to decide if she wants to cut things off. Either way, you need to work on you and like 71Jake sake, figure out what's motivating you. Only then can you begin to build a healthy relationship with anyone.
Hoping things get better for you, hugs to you.

1 Heart

@Hrothgar Wow. I'm almost speechless and that never happens. How does the word Narcissist feel to you? There is a subtype, the Good Guy Narc. Here's a brief list of narcissistic symptoms: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/narcissistic-personality-disorder/basics/symptoms/con-20025568. Just something to consider. We are all a mixture of nature / nurture and the effects of ongoing life experience. And all mental illness, and typical functioning too I suppose, exist on a spectrum. You absolutely do have the capacity to change who you are and how you act. Though you have some trouble taking responsibility for your actions; you have good insight into your personality and behavior. Giving you the benefit of the doubt here, but at some level you are bothered by your actions because you are writing here. Though it's possible you just need supply. You appear to be of above average intelligence, consistent with sociopathy and psychopathy. So, really it's gonna come down to whether or not you want to be an actual Good Guy. You know what that means and you have the strength of will to achieve that standard, if you decide to. Right now you are seeking and using other people to supply your needs. Your post was a very interesting read.

Hi, I was reading your request for suggestions (oh, is this site malfunctioning again?)

@L2015 OK, it’s working. I was reading your request for suggestions for gifts for your buddy’s home. And mixed in with all the congratulations of what a good guy you are, you wrote, “I’m not such a good guy. Read this…” Which led me to this thread.

I am a good woman. My ex-boyfriends are good men. When I read your posts about how you are mistreating these women, what came to me is that you are a good man. Yes, you are a very good man. And when your woman cheated on you, it was too much for you to bear. You didn’t have the “emotion skills” to work through it. You know, if you break your leg, if you know how, you set your own leg and figure out what sort of physical therapy you need. But if you don’t have those skills, you see a doctor to set the leg and prescribe the appropriate physical therapy. (Continued below).

Hrothgar: The engaged girl should have not been around you, you are right, and the single mom sounds like a good person. Give yourself more time to get over your ex and I think it is good you will be seeking counseling with your new insurance. I also get it that you are angry with your ex and you have a right to be. I know someone who has been through this in a dating situation and he was also angry for a while and did not date for about a year - takes time - don't bring women into your world until it is a happy one and then keep the lines of communication open.

Thanks Baldwin, and everyone else. Perhaps time is what I need still. I ended up coming clean with the mother of 2 and told her I still have demons that I'm exercising and that while I'm in a better place than I was a year and a half ago, I'm still not where I need to be. I expected her to walk, but she didn't.

1 Heart

You have awareness and that’s such a good thing.

You know inside you haven’t been able to face all the emotional fallout of what has happened.

It’s changed you in some major ways… ways you don’t like or respect within yourself…
and so long as you continue down the same path …
you probably will continue to feel just as bad …if not worse and worse.

And you truly don’t want or deserve to live a life where you no longer can love or respect yourself.

Betrayal is traumatic.

It cuts to the very core of all people… it decimates and harms parts of us that we never even thought possible.
In that place of hurt we all have felt similar feelings of rage, anger, indifference, hatred, and disgust.

Those are just a few… it’s astonishing to me that some of my own emotions have come at such a cost to myself… I’m not the one that had two affairs… I’m not the one who deserves all of the storming and embroiled emotions that can stew out of control willy nilly inside of my heart and head…

but that’s the deal… that is the fallout…

and dealing with it is no small feat for anyone…

that’s why a decent therapist is needed…

Don’t beat yourself up for normal emotions… but do NOT harm others in the process either…
this is your life… your alone to make it into anything you wish… and what I wish for you, for all people… is a life of self love, self respect, self care and self nurturing… that we can all make our way through to a better place… but it all starts and ends with you.

Believe in yourself and your own power to heal this… with or without her… it’s all up to you now.

What your going through isn’t at all unusual.
Your kind of numbing yourself and not feeling much of anything, it’s totally understandable.
But the longer you go without examining all that baggage is just the longer it will burden you… and we all deserve and need to get rid of it… to travel lighter and freer from pain and heartbreak.

I write all of this as if I know what I’m talking about… but I don’t… not at all… just a constant work in progress … just trying every single solitary day to figure it out… and I’m still a constant student… open to any suggestions… open to any new way to learn or grow… ugh… it isn’t easy

I wish you peace

It does take time Hrothgar. I think there is an inner battle inside with part of us wanting to move on and connect with someone and another part of telling us to slow down and give our heart and mind more time to recover. I have heard people say "You need to find yourself first before losing yourself again with someone else", I think that is true and finding your own identity again and being at peace with yourself can take awhile after this type of hurt. Take time to do things for yourself, try something you always wanted to try, do things you used to love doing before all the this crap, just hang out with friends and enjoy their company and banter. Then there will come a point when you will feel you don't necessarily need someone else, but want to be with someone else to share life with, and then I think you will really feel ready to reconnect again.

2 Hearts