Had a joint counseling session today, with both my and husband's counselors. I find it weird to sit there with all 4 of us in the room. I think part of it is there's no lead counselor - while they work well together, it's hard to know who to look at, or who is going to speak first.
Today I did a lot of the talking, which isn't typical.
This weekend, for some unknown reason, I thought some about the weekend in October when we were at his parents house and I discovered the affair hadn't ended. My husband was upstairs soothing our daughter to sleep when I picked up his chirping phone.
It suddenly occurred to me - why didn't I go upstairs, collect our daughter, drive home by myself, change the locks on the door, get on the phone with an airline, and head out of town to be with my parents? I've been thinking about this a lot. I had a job interview out of town Monday and Tuesday of that next week, so I had practical considerations. We have a dog and a cat. But that night, those things never crossed my mind. It never occurred to me that I had options, that I was anything but the passive victim. That I had choices besides fighting to keep our marriage together.
And that really bothers me. Today, the counselors said it was clear I was still angry at my husband. And it was even more clear I was angry with myself. And that I needed to give myself some credit for being strong, for holding it together. And I don't. I was a mess. People told me I was strong, but I didn't feel strong. I felt afraid, and panicked, and anxious. One counselor said she was reminded of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) - that I had experienced too much in the fall.
What would have happened had I walked away back then? Or in November? Or in December? I don't know. It's unknowable. Would the shock of my leaving have propelled him back home? Set him free? Who knows?
So, these next few weeks my counselor and I get to explore why I blame myself when things go wrong. Which I do, all the time. I feel deeply responsible for too much. It's hurt me in the past at work, and could hurt me in this new position, if I don't watch out. It's clearly hurting me in my relationship now.
I've also been thinking a lot about the blog world. I spent a great deal of last year in deadbabyland. And there is not a single example - beyond me - I have found of a husband leaving his wife after experiencing what we went through. Not one. Antigone commented her husband had a frailty. But that's as much as I've seen.
Marriage is hard. Why is my marriage harder? I can blame him, sure. I can also blame myself.
I think we all play the blame game to some extent, some more than others. Anyone else stuck in blame right now?
3 days ago