Originally Posted by veganchick
One of the things I've worried about by starting this thread is that it will appear as if I am trying to play the "woe is me" card or that I am trying to make Podunk seem less of a victim.
Hey I'm on a roll offering unsolicited advice so I'ma keep on rolling.
I didn't get that. I also think Podunk is only as much of a victim as he chooses to be right now - his being hurt and sad is understandable, but he's not the victim of anything unless you're going to lie to him again. You seem to be trying to own your own shit. I will say that I think vowing to not be in contact with the people at the commune at all is a band-aid at best, because you weren't cheating, and labeling the people and space as "off limits" isn't really healthy, and it won't fix anything. Hopefully this is just temporary. I don't think having to fess up to a lot of people about your lies was cool at all. If they weren't intimate partners who had a say in your safe sex practices, it's not really any of their fucking business. I do wonder if it was your idea or if it was Podunk's idea in order to humiliate you a bit.
Obviously the one thing Podunk is saying over and over again is that he does NOT feel that you are showing remorse. It seems apparent in your writing that you do, and you're trying to figure out the whys. I don't know if you've asked him what you can do to show him that you are sorry, but whatever you are doing isn't coming through as sincere as you said. But dropping pursuing other relationships, including continuing chatting with other interests, is always a good start.
Maybe he expects you to act how HE would act if he was sorry, but of course if you don't know what that is, you can't show him you feel badly. If he is not being open to forgiving you now, I would not let him keep going over and over it, because it's not going to do anybody any good until you've both had some sleep and a chance to regroup. I don't see there is any reason for him to read any of your past correspondence anymore at this time regarding this issue.
I can imagine that if you said nothing happened with Paul, and then you talk about this AMAZING connection with Bob but say nothing happened there either, well how could his mind not go there and wonder if you were trustworthy at all. Maybe you lied too about that, maybe you had wild orgies all week and laughed at Podunk behind his back. I don't think any of that happened but that is what can haunt the mind of a person who finds out their trusted partner wasn't honest. It takes time to rebuild trust, and hopefully Podunk wants to take that time.
Sure your behavior was a bit shitty, but truth is, it seems very
forgivable if he wants to forgive you. It seems while you work to figure out all the reasons you did what you did, and work on showing Podunk that you love him (and figure out how to show you are sorry without having to grovel), he needs to be working on how to love you as the imperfect person you are. His posts show he wavers back and forth, and I really hope you guys get the space and the sleep to be able to deal with this in a calm way. Really I would expect it to take at least a month or few to both feel calm and semi safe again, so hopefully you don't get too despairing if progress is slow.