replied 7 years ago.
Hi again, Dee, and thanks for your reply with additional and detailed information.
I'm glad that you wrote as much as you did, because it helps me understand all the facets of your relationship with your husband, and all the facts about the current situation. You described everything very well, so I can understand the order of events and where you're up to, now.
Right now, with your husband in counseling and still meeting with him every day for lunch, having open communication with him is very good. I agree that you too, should be in counseling, and in addition to your individual counseling, you should also see a couples/marriage counselor who is experienced in guiding couples through these types of events.
I completely understand why you needed to know 'everything' and why you can't get the images out of your head. You're a strong person; many wives wouldn't want to stay in the marriage after what your husband has done. You are making a good choice for your boys, and being optimistic re: the future of your marriage. Some men just have 'cheating' in their genes and they are weak against conquering it. However, because he's in counseling, he's doing something to help himself realize how he's been wrong in so many ways, how he's hurt you, and how he wants to change his behavior.
Try not to badger him and get into arguments anymore with him, about the subject. When you do this, you might be undoing all the progress the therapist has made with him. He KNOWS you're angry/upset, and he knows he's done something wrong and hurtful. Continuing to remind him about it and getting into arguments about it, is not helping the situation. Oh, it would be lovely for you to forgive and forget, and I know you're trying, as evidenced by allowing him to still being in the marriage, but it's difficult. Forgiving is one thing, the forgetting is quite something else, as you are experiencing.
When these images come into your mind, willfully distract your thinking to another, unrelated matter. Think about something that makes you happy, like your boys; think about a business matter that you need to plan a strategy on. Or, try to replace that image with a scene you can see through your mind's eye, which is calming to you; for example, if you like the ocean, picture the waves rolling calmly onto the shore, with sparkling white sands and a brilliant blue sky up above. Picture yourself lounging in a chair on that beach, carefree, with no worries and only the sounds of the seagulls and waves surrounding you. Complete peace.....no one talking, nothing to think about except how the sea breeze smells refreshing and the rolling rhythm of the waves are lulling you into a state of complete calm.
You wanted to know 'all' and you now you know, but in addition to everything else going on in your life, medically, plus trying to save your marriage and save your husband from himself, you need to push these images from your mind and not dwell on them so you can also save yourself.
Try to start counseling for you, talk all this out with the therapist, and even though you feel like it will never leave your mind, time is really an excellent healer. It *will* take time, nothing is 'instant', but, eventually, more happy events/images will replace those that upset you, and I think you're a spectacular person for trying to save your marriage and not leaving your husband. A lesser woman wouldn't have been so strong!
I wish you only the best.
Cher and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you