real life

'How my cheating husband's therapist inadvertently taught me that I am enough.'

My world was rocked – or maybe I should say blown up – when I found out about my husband’s first indiscretion. I have experienced first- hand the depths of hell. The days are a weird mix of flying by and at the same time, each second feels like an eternity.

If someone had told me after hearing about my husband’s transgressions that it would only get worse, I think I probably would have checked myself into a mental hospital. If I had known the pain that I would continue to experience and the things I’ve had to go through would be as bad as it has, I’m not sure I would’ve wanted to go on.

Shortly after admitting to his actions, my husband started meeting with a counsellor named Dave. The two of them had an instant connection. He was real. He told it like it was. And he gave my husband tools. Things to do. Dave believed in analysing your personality using the Enneagram method. He was quickly able to identify my husband as a Type 3, or the Achiever. He dives into this method of analysing yourself, identifying why you do things and working on why your personality makes you do bad things. My husband was hooked.

Under Dave’s tutelage, my husband was on a self-described “path of enlightenment.”

He was in the light. It was all so clear. And with every step he took on this path of enlightenment, he found new ways to hurt me. He began chastising me for not “getting my sh*t together”. He became mean. He became evil. And it was all in the name of fixing himself.

And one night in the middle of the night as I knelt on the floor begging God for some sort of direction, I felt the word “Dave”. It wasn’t a voice, it was just something I felt. I didn’t know why I felt like I had to meet with him, I just knew that it was what I was called to do. Honestly, I made the appointment thinking that I could go to Dave to get a little bit of fixing. If he could help my husband in his enlightenment, maybe he could show me the light as well.

Then a series of events happen that I will never forget.

I had lunch with two friends who were probably just trying to stage an intervention on my lack of eating. They spent an hour and a half telling me how special I was. Not to blow smoke, but just to let me know how important I was and that I didn’t need to change.

I left that lunch and received a text from another friend that said: you are enough. At that second, a song came on the radio. I pulled the car over, raised my hands to heaven and began singing a song that I had never heard. The song was “Let the Church Say Amen”. I knew then that I was enough. I didn’t need to be fixed by this Dave guy.

I went into that meeting a changed woman. I still didn’t know what I was going to say but I knew that no matter what, I was enough. I spent 45 minutes telling Dave what had happened since he started counselling my husband. The words poured out of me. I told him all the evil things my husband had done and said in the name of his “path of enlightenment.” I started telling him how his words were interpreted. He sat there and listened to my words coming through tears and snot running down my face.

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And when I was done he looked at me and asked, “So I see you’ve read a little about the Enneagram test. And I see that you’ve identified yourself as a Type 2. What part of your personality do you think has contributed to all of this?”

I sat there stunned. This man was asking me what I had done to cause this.

I looked him straight in the face and I said, “In the spirit of full disclosure, I resent you. And that’s hard for this people-pleaser to say. I want you to like me and to have pity on me. But I resent you. I resent you for what you’ve done to my husband. And I resent you for what you’re doing right now. How dare you try to blame this all on my personality. I did not cause this.”

He looked at me stunned and then spent the next half an hour trying to find ways to get me to calm down. You know how hard it is to do deep breathing exercises when you’re sitting next to the man who has enabled your husband to pour salt in your wounds? And to be honest, the whole time I was there I felt like he was only trying to limit his liability. The look on his face was, “Oh crap. If something happens to her on the way out of here, it’ll be on my head.”

So I tell you all of this not so that you’ll feel sorry for me or the crud I’ve had to go through. I write all of this so that it may be a wakeup call. I feel like I want to rent a billboard or shout it from a megaphone in the mall. If you hear nothing else today, please know that YOU. ARE. ENOUGH.

I would like to think that there could have been a different way for me to grasp that message, but unfortunately, I don’t think I would have listened. I am enough. If I have to say that 5,000 times today I will. I am loved. I am perfectly imperfect.  I will never let anyone tell me otherwise. I will never again determine my value because of what someone thinks about me or because of what they’ve done to me – good or bad.

I am enough and so are you.

This post originally appeared on Divorced Moms and was republished here with full permission. 

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