I understand what you are saying clear as day..........
Unfortunately it took a near divorce in my life to get it.
Maca was clear to me from the beginning as well-his mom and his exwife cheated and he was point blank-
"Just tell me if you are going to F*** someone else so I can leave. I would rather you be honest with me."
My problem was that I did understand his words. BUT I also loved him and didn't want him to leave. No amount of struggle on my part could keep me healthy and whole by his terms though. I tried-I tried hard and I failed harder.
It wasn't until I found this board actually that I realized that what I thought was "something wrong with me" was actually just ME and that I needed to just BE me.
When I figured that out-it wasn't rocket science to tell him, "look I fucked up. I told you I was going to be your monogomous wife-but at the time I didn't know that I just can't do that, because it isn'twho I am. I do know now and feel I must tell you who I am. (elaborated then)."
I ended by letting him know that I do love him and would respect if these terms weren't agreeable and he felt he had to leave.
That was the hardest thing I'd done in my life.
But it was also the best.
Unfortunately-even though it seems obvious to be honest-our society flat does not teach honesty!
We teach ABOUT honesty-but we don't teach the art of BEING honest or ACCEPTING honesty from others.
So many of us are "behind the 8 ball" so to speak when we get into relationships and have to figure out how to express who we are to someone-because our WHOLE LIVES we've been taught to keep who we are to ourselves for our own "safety" and "well-being".
I think it's awesome that you two are trying to find a solution to the breakdown in your relationship. I don't know what the answers are-but I know being real was the answer in mine-and it was hard for both of us to see that being real HAD to come first.
I read something recently-in one of many self-help books I've read in the last 9 months.
They said, "you can't be true to ANYONE else, until you are completely true to yourself. First you have to acknowledge who you REALLY are, then you have to claim yourself and BE yourself to others. THEN you can be true to another person."