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#2211192 - 01/08/12 01:51 PM Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Hello, everyone.

This is my first post. I've lurked for quite a while.

My wife first talked about "I think I want to separate for 6 to 12 months" about 5 months ago. I wish I had taken her up on that 6 month deal! I couldn't. It hurt too much. I was so worried about the kids and what they would feel. If I had been able to detach then, I'm pretty sure I'd be well into piecing by now.

Instead, I freaked out, begged, pleaded, cried, stalked, spied, and spun into the worst depression I've ever felt, for months.

I'm committed to a slow and steady DB and keeping my family together. I'm resigned to how this is going to go. Last couple weeks, my wife and I have been warming up. Last few days, she's gotten colder and tried to push my buttons. I've gotten pretty good at disconnecting the buttons and reacting calmly, but yesterday was a day I could have done better.

I'm looking for advice on how I can do this better in general. My long-term goal is a loving marriage, obviously. The big event I'm hoping to come to in the next few months is for her to take an interest in doing things that can improve our relationship instead of being hostile about it. I need to focus better on my short-term goals in getting there.

I'm 34. W is 35. My D from a previous marriage is 15. Our S is 6, D is 3.

I'll post a timeline in a few minutes. Probably more than a few.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2211516 - 01/09/12 07:36 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
dbmod Offline
Member

Registered: 08/04/08
Posts: 2155
^
_________________________
dbmod

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#2211522 - 01/09/12 08:09 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: dbmod]
MrBond Offline
Member

Registered: 06/18/08
Posts: 10601
Sorry that you find yourself here. The more information you give about your marital history, the better we can help you.
_________________________
M-43 W-40
2D - 9 and 5

Emotion, yet peace.
Ignorance, yet knowledge.
Passion, yet serenity.
Chaos, yet harmony.
Death, yet a new life.

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#2211569 - 01/09/12 11:40 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: MrBond]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Thanks, MrBond. I had intended to fill in the story Sunday a few minutes after my first post, but since I'm new here, I wasn't able to add to the thread until a moderator approved it.

Timeline
1998 - W and I met. I was married and had a 2-year-old daughter. I moved out of XW's house about two weeks later. My oldest daughter has never forgiven me for leaving that marriage. I would do things differently if I had them to do over. My future wife was dating my best friend for about 6 months. Shortly after that, W and I were dating for a solid 6 years.
2004 - W and I got married. So in love.
2005 - Our son was born. He didn't sleep for 18 months. It broke me.
2006 - I was unable to work for quite a while. I let a client steal $7,500 from me because I was too depressed to stand up for myself. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Sleep deprivation is a trigger for me. Wife declared bankruptcy to cover the bills.
The depression, the baby stress, and the money stress took a huge toll on the marriage. W had to threaten divorce before I was willing to seek counseling.
2007 - My bipolar symptoms had been stable and well-managed for some time. With the blessing of my psychiatrist, W and I decided to buy a house and have another baby. When one of my contracts ended (I'm often a freelance computer programmer/consultant), I took a full-time job for stability.
2008 - My second daughter was born. Also didn't sleep. At least she ate. But she was allergic to everything and had awful acid reflux. I spent late hours every night shambling my baby girl in laps around my living room or down the street because it was the only thing that calmed her down.
2009 - More sleep deprivation, more depression, more problems at work. I lost the job. Again, it was a big stress on the marriage. I spent two months of the summer of 2009 on unemployment with my kids. It was great. My wife resented me for it. After that, I got a series of lucrative contracts and things felt pretty good.

There are a number of points in here where I can point out what I did to harm my marriage. I've had months to dwell on it. The biggest mistake I was making was keeping my wife out of my affairs because it stressed me out when she got stressed out. She can be an anxious person, and that's putting it lightly. I thought that by not telling her what was going on in my life with my depression or with my money, I could keep everything smooth and enjoy life better.

I can talk about the specific things that I've done wrong and how I have changed my mindset and started acting differently. When I have asked for help in other places, I've beaten myself with my mistakes. I feel now that once my wife got to a certain point, *everything* I ever did was wrong, and I was desperate to find things that I could fix so that she could come back to me.

Now, I'm not sure that is productive. One of the things I found wrong with me is that I suffer from "nice guy" syndrome and needed to grow a backbone, stop being passive-agressive, and stand up for myself.

My wife did tell me that she feels like my soul is shattered into tiny little pieces, and that since I don't have access to my own soul, I had to hold on to hers so tightly I was crushing it. So... that's something I've been working on, as well.

April 2011 - I think my wife was getting the sense that there was something wrong with me, and she was nervous not knowing what was going on with my finances. I got an insufficient funds notice in the mail one day and it really upset her. I told her it was OK, because I had a $10,000 check. That upset her, too, knowing that I'd waited so long to bill that client, when that is what bankrupted us before.

I knew there was something wrong with me. The medications for treating bipolar disorder are all mood dampeners. They take the color out of the world. They make you dumb and forgetful, uninteresting. It's a great deal of fun to be on the edge of mania if you can be lucky enough not to go full maniac and hurt yourself or anyone else. Convincing people who have enjoyed the highs of bipolar disorder to give it up and accept their lives will be better if they take these drugs is not easily done.

I had what I would characterize as a minor case of bipolar disorder. I never did anything terribly dangerous, was never anywhere near psychotic, and I actually benefitted from the occasional 36-hour mania-fueled work day. But I did suffer from occasional depression that made it hard to work.

Anyway, I figured that I could manage my symptoms through a strict sleep schedule and by keeping manic behaviors in check so I didn't risk swinging into depression, and that as I got better at this, I could wean myself off the meds. I knew my wife wouldn't understand and wouldn't support this, so I didn't tell her anything about it. I figured if I could be stable for a few months off the meds, I'd tell her what was going on and.... she couldn't complain because I'd be "OK".

I did this under the care and support of my psychiatrist, though not with her enthusiastic blessing. I never went off my meds or made changes without talking to my doc. For two years I had been trying to will myself even and steady so I could wean off the drugs, but it was never quite good enough and I'd go through periods where I really struggled to stay motivated.

Here in April of 2011, I realized that I had lost and that I needed more drugs not less. I was having a terribly difficult time remaining motivated and productive, and having difficulty concentrating. I told my doc things weren't right, she agreed, and put me on Ritilin. Ritilin worked for a few weeks, then it didn't. It kinda worked for another few weeks on a higher dose, but it eventually made things worse and threw me into a depression. By July, my doc put me on something else (Fanapt) and everything got better. The time in between was lousy, but my communication with my wife was even lousier.

She assumed I was playing with my meds or something, and when she found out that I had been endeavoring to get off the drugs, she was upset. Meanwhile, I wasn't able to work full weeks during this period (I could only concentrate for about 20 hours a week. Computer programming requires concentration.), so I was depleting my bank account and not talking to my wife about that either.

We started seeing a marriage counselor during this period because she was really unhappy. We saw the pain others around us were in because of divorce and we would look into each other's eyes when we laid down at night and say to each other, sincerely, "Let's never get divorced." My wife would tell me how she was so frustrated by what I was doing, but that it was futile because I was never going to change and she wasn't going to divorce me over it.

It shouldn't have been so hard for me to see it coming. We were in marriage counseling and I was not giving my wife what she needed (to know what was going on with my treatment and finances) week after week. I feel dumb writing about it now.


I'm exhausted right now. I want to go to sleep, so I'll rush through the rest.
In early July, in the course of a week, W goes from being all warmth and love to cold and unable to come to bed at night. She's thinking about leaving me but doesn't want to tell me about it. I'm pretty sure she wanted to make her mind up for herself first, then inform me of the decision. I wanted to be part of the decision making process.

She had been texting a male highschool friend of hers like crazy - 3500 texts a month, compared to the 500 or so that passed between W and me. He came to town to visit for a weekend, used the magic words "barely functional" to my wife, and that's when she started talking about leaving me.

I called EA on them. She denies it, but she hesitated enough that I think she knows it is true. She doesn't want to think of herself as cheating, but she let someone else come between us. There was more to that, but I don't get the sense that worrying about her EA with this guy has ever helped our efforts at reconciling.

Around July 7th, she wouldn't come to bed. At three in the morning, I came back to the living room (she had been on her internet message board for hours, just like every night) and said there was something wrong and that I knew it. She had been increasingly secretive and cold and distant. I asked her if she was thinking about leaving me. She said it was something she was thinking about but that she wasn't ready to talk about it yet and I was getting worried prematurely.

But since I asked, yes, she was thinking it would be a good idea if we separated for 6 to 12 months.

I begged, pleaded, cried, etc, etc, etc. For days. Weeks. She hadn't made her mind up and was listening to my plea that we should find a way to work this out before we move to separation. I couldn't believe she would even consider doing that to the kids or to me.

I spied on her. She found out. She demanded that I leave the house and "give her space". I cried the first day that passed that I didn't talk to her. In 13 years, I had talked to her nearly every day. For 13 years, one of us waited up for the other one to come to bed. I didn't know how to sleep alone for a long time. I couldn't eat much. I lost 25 pounds. I could only manage to stay sane enough to work for a few hours out of the day.

I couch surfed at friends houses because I couldn't understand spending the money on an apartment when we ought to be working together to sort our stuff out.

In late August, a few days before our 7th anniversary, I had been out of the house for 4 weeks. W was thinking about our vows and starting to miss me and told her therapist that she was thinking about re-committing to me.

I was going crazy with no place of my own to be. Not knowing my wife's state of mind, I told her I was coming home, no matter what the consequences.

It's so easy to see what I did wrong. I wish I had been on this board back then and had gotten some better advice.

A week later, she filed D.

Given that, there was NO WAY I was moving back out of the house. I thought that if I dragged my feet on the divorce long enough, she'd appreciate the changes that I'd been making and that we'd work things out instead.

She made it clear a couple of times that there might be an alternative to divorce, but that alternative was a legal separation that was functionally the same as divorce, except that I get to keep my health coverage. I wasn't going for it.

I could see that what I was doing wasn't working and that we were coming very close to a point where we were going to be in a bitter custody battle, so I told her that I'd move out if she put the divorce on hold.

That was a little over a month ago. She didn't agree. I moved out anyway, in a bid to earn some good will. She then agreed to put the divorce on hold for 3 (or more) months as long as I'd stay out of the house.

I should qualify. My stuff is still at the house, I just don't go there most days. Tuesdays and Fridays are my nights with the kids - I pick them up from school and take them to the house and put them to bed in the one and only bedroom they've ever had and hopefully ever have to have. Friday nights I stay at the house and wake up with the kids Saturday. I spend the day with them, put them to bed, then leave again.

I'm renting a room now for my sanity, but it's just a place to sleep.

Anyway, it's been over a month that I've been out. It was a month that I was away the first time before she started telling her therapist that she wanted to fix things. Somehow, when I came home uninvited in August, something snapped in her, and I don't know how to fix it.

She has such thick walls now that it is very hard to tell what she is thinking or feeling. When she lets her guard down for a while, it feels really nice, but she gets really nasty shortly afterward. I understand that's part of the cycle.

I don't want to spend 18 months doing this. I want to know how to get back into her heart now! but I'll wait.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2211839 - 01/10/12 10:31 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: MrBond]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I wrote a long response to this yesterday... Please tell me it didn't get eaten by the system!
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2212267 - 01/12/12 01:43 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
My wife isn't interested in couples/marriage counseling. "Reconciliation is not my goal".

Over the last few weeks, I have gotten her to come to my IC sessions. My IC therapist is actually a lot better than our original marriage counselor, and has helped W and me communicate on a few occassions.

W came with me yesterday again, and despite a rough patch over the last several days, it seemed like we were making progress. The issue that she's been throwing at me lately, when we try to talk about anything at all is how "nothing matters" because I think she is immoral for what she is doing. That I am so opposed to the idea of divorce that there are no possible reasons to justify it. I figured I was just looking at re-runs of her all or nothing thinking and deflection. Sometimes I think that when things seem to be getting better, some level of her mind is saying "Oh, crap! Not this again. I have to sabotage this somehow!".

Maybe I need to find a way to deal with this thinking even if it is a deflection, but I'm starting to think that it's an honest issue that I have to hear her about and try to find someway of talking about it, even though we both get really upset when we try to talk about anything in that emotional neighborhood.

Well, it looks like my wife will be coming to more counseling with me, so that will be good.

I bought a 3-pack over-the-phone help session with one of Michelle's consultants. Lori or Laurie. I've talked to her twice. I've been saving my last session for a time when I really need it.

I was thinking of maybe having my wife get on the phone with me, even though she's not ready to say that reconciliation is her goal or that she wants to go to couples counseling.

Is that a good idea?
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2212968 - 01/15/12 06:13 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
My wife and I had a small argument today. D3 was not going to sleep. I had come over to the house for lunch and to help take the Christmas tree down. D3 has become extremely defiant and challenging lately. She doesn't seem to be influenced by timeouts or getting toys taken away or anything else we can think of at the moment. She won't stay in bed now. D3 came downstairs for probably the third time, and W went up to...? We really were at a loss.

As my wife was coming out of our daughter's bedroom, I remarked to her, "There has to be a line you can cross where simply hitting your kids is the less degrading thing to do." W and I are both strongly anti-hitting. This is not the way we want to raise children. She knows that about me, and this was meant to be a joke.

So, for the next 5 minutes, W and I quietly had an argument outside of D3's bedroom door, while W held the doorknob to prevent D3 from opening it. A guideline of us is that however you parent ought to leave everyones' dignity intact. That certainly wasn't happening.

So she repeated a few times something about how we don't hit, leaving me quite confused because she knows I agree with her. I feel lost when we argue sometimes because I'm pretty sure we're not arguing over whatever is actually coming out of her mouth. She asked, "Is there a line where I'm allowed to hit you?". I would be overjoyed if she would voice her anger directly at me. I stumbled a bit trying to express that, while she jumped around a little bit, pulling various bits from past fights. She punctuated with "that's how I *know* I don't want to be with you" and after another exchange or two, W disappeared into D3's bedroom to coax her into bed.

When W came out after a few minutes, I came back upstairs to try let her know that I was hearing her. I realized that the general theme was that she didn't feel respected as a parent, and that she was angry, and afraid of how things were going to go with our younger two children. I told her that I don't expect her to come back to me if she thinks I won't support her as a parent and as a partner and if she feels that I make her crazy. I felt that was important to say because she thinks it's unfair of me to have said (over 6 weeks ago) that she is immoral and wrong for bringing this divorce on our children. I think when she hears that, she thinks I mean that she had a duty to stay with me even if I drive her crazy.

In fact, what I mean is that we can find ways to address her concerns without putting our kids through hell and that we have not yet "done all we can" to save this marriage. When I try to defend my position, I think what she hears is that the things I did that pushed her away were OK and she has to just accept them. What I really mean is that I don't want to continue any behaviors that weaken our marriage and I will work "tirelessly" to make that a reality. I may say "tirelessly", but I'll admit I get pretty tired. I wish I had a lot more energy to DB. It's really easy to get down or fatigued.

Anyway, I didn't talk about any of that in that moment. I just kept it about her feelings - I can see you're hurting and I wouldn't want you to be with someone who made you feel that way. I could see that while she was in the bedroom with our daughter, that some of W's tantrum energy had dissipated, and she conceded that she knew that I wasn't going to hit the kids. I think I may have added something about how my commitment to our marriage meant I will make sure she feels supported... I can't remember what I said exactly, but it wasn't pushy and I didn't argue.

We have been spending more time around each other, and that is encouraging. I want her to open up like this more often, even if she is angry and hurt so we can get more of this stuff out in the open and exercised.

Later, I sent her an email:
Quote:
I hear you saying that you are afraid that I will be unable to respect your wishes as a parent or allow our children to be raised as you would like. I hear you saying that you expect me to turn our children against you, and compete with you for their affection. I hear you saying that you are afraid that I will have inappropriate attachments with the children. I hear you saying that you were hurt by the ways you felt out of control as a step-parent. I hear you saying that you are hurt by the way I might be talking to Bethany about you now.


Is there anything I missed? Is there anything else you want to say?


I'd like to talk to her about what I meant when I said she was behaving immoral and destructively before, but that might not be a conversation we can have successfully outside of a therapist's office.

No more emails for today, probably.

I have been sending W emails with text from "Divorce Remedy". I know you're not supposed to try to get your WAW to read the book, especially when you're in Last Resort mode. Am I still in Last Resort mode? I don't know. We seem to have some dialog now. Should I go back to it?

Anyway, I've been sending her the story of Carol and Dean in the "Pulling it all together" section, a few paragraphs at a time. I'm trying to illustrate to her that repairing a marriage is a process and that change is possible and there is a point to what I'm trying to do.

She hasn't responded to these emails, so I don't know if she's reading them or not, but I think she is. She reads every heart-bearing email I write to her. I've gotten a lot better at not sending them.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2213264 - 01/16/12 07:06 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
sandi2 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/07
Posts: 10903
Is the OM still in the picture?
_________________________
It is not about what you feel should work in your M. It is about doing the work that gets the right results. Do what works!

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#2213277 - 01/16/12 08:16 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: sandi2]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
OM lives 450 miles away. They have maintained a relationship since highschool. He is part of a group of close friends that have kept in touch despite being all over the country.

For her to just stop talking to him would seem weird to everyone. The problem is that she is getting her emotional needs filled by him instead of me. I've seen some of their snuggly-wuggly texts and it makes me sick.

I think they may have cooled off. At least she doesn't seem to be constantly texting him any more. I don't know if she's decided to do it mainly when I'm not around, but if that were the case, I suspect she'd be more eager to get rid of me more often.

Dwelling on the OM doesn't really help anything. I wish she would stop it with him, but I think that conversation comes a while after the one where W says she wants things to get better between us.

I asked her to come to counseling tomorrow. Short notice. She hates short notice. But she just refused. She doesn't want to go very often. She'll say, "It's too soon."

I don't know what she's waiting for. I'm frustrated with all of the waiting. What is she afraid of? What is so hard?
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2213654 - 01/17/12 08:45 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
sandi2 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/07
Posts: 10903
OM's still in the picture. It seems rather strange that you would make excuses for why she shouldn't just cut it off suddenly (b/c of the close group). Would you say the same if he lived closer, and there were more chances that he could be sleeping with your W?

I'm not trying to get you riled at me, but rather I hope to say something to cause you to understand something. To a woman, an emotional affair is very serious. B/c so much of who she is as a female, is tied to her emotions. Now with men, they seem to face the thought of an EA okay, but if they find out the W has slept with OM, then the H can't get that picture out of his head. He wants to go beat the OG up! So, the differences are amazing.

Quote:
The problem is that she is getting her emotional needs filled by him instead of me.


Exactly! And her getting her emotional needs met could be compared to having sex (for her)! That's why it's called and emotional A instead of physical.

Quote:
Dwelling on the OM doesn't really help anything. I wish she would stop it with him, but I think that conversation comes a while after the one where W says she wants things to get better between us.


I think you have tried to get the right thought here, but just haven't quite made it all the way through. You're right that the real problem didn't start with OM. Therefore, dwelling on him doesn't solve the original problem. But do you know what the original problem was? If so, then that will be helpful, and if you don't know....then it only adds to the mess you have now. B/c now, she's closed her heart to you and opened it to another. Even though you can't control how she feels or even what she does, you waiting around for her to decide she wants things to get better between the two of you......will not save your M.

No, I'm not suggesting you have a conversation about the MR or the OM. Neither do you need to try to fix her. DBing is about becoming the best man you can possibly be. It's finding that man you use to be. Maybe he had a lot of faults, but there was something she caused her to fall in love with you.

I agree with you about something you said in a previous post. Something about how you stop beating yourself up for the mistakes and trying to fix them (the past). And, also how it seemed she reached a point that everything you did seem to be wrong in her eyes. I think that's true for many WAW's. It's like her threshold for tolerance is gone and finding any patience or understanding for her H simply goes out the window. It's a heart condition. A closed heart.

I wish I could tell you that sending her copies of sections in the DR book would help her, but sadly, it doesn't. In fact, every time you try to point her in the direction of MC or sending her a book/tape/CD about MR, will only serve as pressure to her. It will make her more resentful and act colder to you. Anyone else might be able to say something at some point that would find its way through the WAW fog, but you won't be that person. It just doesn't work that way.

Every time you have a few good days and then you see her suddenly act cold again, that's your clue to step back. Here's the main thing I see the LBH do that makes it harder to R, and that's when she begins to show some small positive sign (like having a good day) and the H relates in some type of fashion (attitude, facial expression, or whatever) that he's encouraged about the future of the M. Sad, but true! That's why she feels she has to be cold toward you, so you won't go thinking she's coming around.

That's why DBing is for you.....not her. That's why MC doesn't work if there's OM in the picture!! She said R was not in the future! She has to want to reconcile in order for MC to help her. So, stop trying to get her to go with you. That is pressure.

One word about the three-year old. My parents never, ever, hit me. However, I had no problem in figuring out at a young age, why I was born with extra padding on my butt! smirk There is a difference in hitting and in spanking. There is a difference in whipping and in spanking. The problem is when adults don't know the difference.
_________________________
It is not about what you feel should work in your M. It is about doing the work that gets the right results. Do what works!

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#2213676 - 01/17/12 09:50 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: sandi2]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Sandi2:
"I agree with you about something you said in a previous post. Something about how you stop beating yourself up for the mistakes and trying to fix them (the past). And, also how it seemed she reached a point that everything you did seem to be wrong in her eyes. I think that's true for many WAW's. It's like her threshold for tolerance is gone and finding any patience or understanding for her H simply goes out the window. It's a heart condition. A closed heart"

Great explanation... In honor of MLK day, A friend shared this quote and it seems to apply to DB as well and how to focus one's own thoughts & attitudes in these difficult sitch's:

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

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#2213692 - 01/17/12 10:25 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
sandi2 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/07
Posts: 10903
Excellent!
_________________________
It is not about what you feel should work in your M. It is about doing the work that gets the right results. Do what works!

Top
#2213702 - 01/17/12 10:51 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: sandi2]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: sandi2
OM's still in the picture. It seems rather strange that you would make excuses for why she shouldn't just cut it off suddenly (b/c of the close group). Would you say the same if he lived closer, and there were more chances that he could be sleeping with your W?


How would I know that he's not still in the picture? I saw her text him for the first time in weeks the other day and she wasn't being secretive about it the way she used to be. I think they've cooled off.

And if they haven't, then what? She filed D. She's not interested in what other people think she ought to do as a wife or a mother. I don't think there is anything anyone can say that would convince her to let him go.

You don't have to convince me that an EA is serious. This EA was the catalyst for "ILYBINILWY" in my relationship. She never used those words. She said "Maybe my marriage was a colossal mistake".

I do know a fair bit about what went wrong with us. A lot of it is stuff I can't change - it's how we interact. I mean, I have changed, but it will take her a long time to see that with more limited contact. Like she has to know that if she sets a rule for my oldest daughter (her SD) that I think is silly, that I'll back her up on it.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

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#2213888 - 01/18/12 03:48 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I almost sent her an email today, apologizing for what was basically the last straw for her.

I apologized mainly for making unilateral decisions and not taking her feelings into account or being sensitive to her.

I said I don't want to be that person any more. And then I wrote that I don't want to pour my heart out in emails that she won't respond to and that this would be the last one.

I don't send her those kinds of emails often any more, but they do happen. I've decided to make it a hand-written letter instead.

It's an earnest apology and it covers some new ground for me and for her. I think it has value and that she should see it but I've also been thinking about putting more distance between us lately. Someone commented that the bursts of cold from her could be a reaction to my feeling good about where we are going. Maybe I would to better to purposely avoid contact with her more often.

Or maybe it's better to just let nice times happen when they happen. I don't know. It's hard to play some sort of no-contact game when there are three complicated kids involved. The divorce made all of them more complicated. frown

Any thoughts on when it is appropriate to give my WAW letter? We're pretty comfortable around each other after having stopped most pursual behavior a long while back. I've also been thinking about having her join in on a DB phone consultation. I've got one left from my 3-pack and I think she'd come along. Obviously, I wouldn't push.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2213901 - 01/18/12 04:49 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
LITB Offline
Member

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1086
Loc: San Francisco
Hi AT,

I am curious to know what your DB coach said about the letter. My coach helped me write one last year. It was a last resort letter.

Also, what has your coach said about your W joining you on a session?

I'd back off on the emails/letters. It seems as though they would validate her decision. Have you apologized for your part already? If so, have you begun to address the issues within your control?

I believe one of the most important, but challenging things to do is to detach.

Here is a link:
Livestrong Developing Detachment

I know 25 has another example of detachment and sandi2 has an analogy of dropping the rope. Very good info to reference.
_________________________
FKA:Left_in_the_Bay
M-39 W-42
D11, S8
M-17
Bomb:11/10 D Filed:3/11
Agreed to reconcile: 5/12
W says, "I don't want to work on this M" 12/12
Moved out 3/13
2nd D to filed 3/14
2nd reconciliation: 6/14

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#2213996 - 01/18/12 10:58 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: LITB]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I bought 3 phone sessions with a DB coach a little over a month ago when I was considering doing something drastic - moving out of my house - in the hope that my wife would put the divorce on hold.

I did move out. It [censored], but my marriage has some time. I see my kids at least 4 days a week. I could be doing worse. And my wife did put the divorce (originally filed in September) on hold.

I only used two of the sessions and decided to save the third for when I "really need it". I haven't talked to a DB coach about writing a letter.

My wife does come to counseling sometimes. She softens sometimes. I think she might be intrigued by the fact that I have a paid-for session with one of these coaches and might want to try it out.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2214106 - 01/19/12 01:44 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
sandi2 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/27/07
Posts: 10903
I think the letters work once in a while. If you'll read Crimson's thread, you'll see that he just might get an opportunity to at least speak with his W before the D. Here's his last thread:

http://www.divorcebusting.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2214068&page=1

Here's the thing, Crimson has made a 180 in who he is as a man. He has faced things about himself that was very painful and he has changed what he had power to change and he's regretted what he messed up and now what he will miss. He knows that his M has probably ended and on the way to D court. He poured his heart out to his W in a letter, not begging her to take him back, but telling her she was right to be hurt. He spelled out the things he now sees that he didn't see when she was with him. He didn't just sum it up, but he took event after event and case after case where he screwed up. He talked about his behavior, his failings, his wrongs......not hers. He spoke from a pure heart of love and regret. It was what he wanted to leave with her.

Now, if he had tried this when his W first left, it would have fell on deaf ears, more than likely. But timing is everything. He had to grow, first. Hopefully, it has stirred her heart enough to listen to more. If not, then he is as prepared to move on as much as he possibly can be.

So, don't write a letter with intent of just apologizing. Not that you shouldn't apologize, but don't use it as a tool to pull her back. And, apologize for the new areas, as you stated, not something you've already apologized about. Don't try to win her back or beg for another chance. If you've done this already, then she's not going to hear you. She has to see real change. She wants you to tell her what you know you did wrong and what you've learned, and what you are doing differently. Otherwise, I don't think it will be enough to change her direction, but that's my opinion.

I agree about discussing it with your DB coach.
_________________________
It is not about what you feel should work in your M. It is about doing the work that gets the right results. Do what works!

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#2214442 - 01/20/12 05:09 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: sandi2]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
W and I get along pretty well now. Or so I think. I've stopped most overt pursuing behavior and things go smoothly most of the time.

She's had time to get used to the fact that I'm not going to attack her or try to shame her into doing "the right thing". I've done that in the past, not knowing better.

Right now, I don't live at home, but I'm often there. I see the kids 4 days a week, but W and I don't spend much time in the same room.

I get frustrated when her ... mental condition prevents her from doing the right thing for our kids. I've asked several times for some simple things to help out our troubled S6 that would mean me stopping by to pick one of the kids up for a while and she doesn't respond.

So, it's hard not express frustration at her selfishnes. But I guess I have to let her act that way.

Why, lord, why can't I have my wife back? The nearly sane one.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2214470 - 01/20/12 06:51 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
That is interesting. Especially that you say you were avoiding confrontation, because it seem like a very confrontational thing to do. CES and I are on the opposite side of this and I'd love some advice on how to get past it.

Not confrontational at all-it's actually passive-aggressive, all the frustrations and anger come out sideways. Have you read the book CoDependent No More? If not, it might be helpful for you.

Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
I think not being able to ask for what you need is a big problem. For my wife, it comes down to not believing you'll get what you need. She may not want me to do something with S that I did with D, but since I let her down before, won't consider that I will heed her wishes. So she won't ask, but instead boil over with anger until she's twitching with rage and has a tantrum - and at that moment, during the tantrum, I finally figure out what the anger is over.

It's going to take time + consistent change for her to believe you won't let her down. What kind of things did you let her down on?

Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
This would be easier if I could just read minds.

Wouldn't everything? smile

Quote:
Look at what your W is saying for any kernals of truth, things you can work on because that's all we can do.


Originally Posted By: AT
You say you weren't making things up, but I bet your H felt like you were. Winner, winner, chicken dinner! He certainly did and I didn't take the times he brought it up seriously enough. Yes, kernels of truth are in there. I feel like I'm on the bomb squad when I'm wading through a seemingly irrational outburst and all of the distorted thinking to find the truth. It's nerve wracking. I have to keep her talking, despite the attacks, and try to find some meaning before she explodes.

I would do something similar to what I mentioned to ces-stop the "conversation" and say "I love you and I want to hear your complaint but I'm leaving until we can both talk calmly."
Originally Posted By: AT
I wish I could get my W to uncork all the pain and let it out.

That's hard because it's really scary. Probably fear, fear that you won't understand, fear that you will reject her or fear that she's unlovable. Another great book, How to Change Your Marriage Without Talking About It.

Is she in IC?

Quote:
Does your W have depression? Is it being treated?


Originally Posted By: AT
Hmmm. I would ask this: Does any WAW dealing with the pressure of tearing their own family apart because they feel they don't have any other choice ever not have depression?
There are several types of depression, major, chronic, situational, undiagnosed and/or untreated depression is probably the culprit in many of our sitches. Part of my problem was that I was so depressed, tho functional, that I really didn't care anymore. Everything irritated me and I was constantly unhappy. Now that I am so much better it's scary how really sick I was.

Hope this is helpful.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

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#2214471 - 01/20/12 06:56 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
Also wanted to mention The 5 Love Languages-my, H and I were totally off on this. Find out your W's, if you don't already know and show your love in that way.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

Top
#2217031 - 01/29/12 07:47 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I put Five Love Languages in my Amazon shopping cart. I'm concerned this book might not be really helpful in a relationship where we're not able to express love most of the time. But I've heard it suggested so often, that I'll happily give it a go.

Co-dependent no more... I don't know how well this applies to me. I have a daughter that struggles with self harm and other self-destructive behaviors, so I have a taste of that. I think that my wife is the one who identifies as co-dependent. I struggle with depression and a handful of other issues - bipolar disorder, ADHD (maybe), inappropriate boundaries, etc.

My wife has taken the advice of people escaping relationships with narcissist types and said things (to herself, as I were not there) like "I don't have to engage." when we were having arguments early on. She was making everyone in her life miserable, and trying to talk her out of it wasn't working real well. I was in cry, beg, plead mode and it wasn't pretty.

I'd consider giving her codependent no more to read, but I'd really rather have her in a mode of thinking of ways to improve our relationship, not escape it.

I heard an interesting author on Science Friday last friday. Mark Williams wrote Mindfulness: An Eight-Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World. According to the author and his studies, doing the meditative exercises described in the book daily is as effective as medication in preventing recurring depression. That's something we can both use.

[edited by dbmod, outside links not allowed]

This last week with W has been as hot and cold as ever. I told W one morning that I asked my IC for a reference for an IC for my W. I didn't tell her that D15 said that W told her that she thinks she's depressed. I've known W is depressed for a long time. That wasn't news. Selfishly, and compassionately, I'd like for W to have a therapist that doesn't take an attitude like, "H is bad for you, D will make your life better."

Anyway, W's eyes went black (they do that when she's angry for some reason) and she started ranting about how I was trying to prove that she was the crazy one so I could take the kids from her. "Just leave me alone."

Later that, she was warm and pleasant.

One of our challenges right now is that we have to dig our way out of around $20K in debt incurred during the last 6 months when I was unable to work at full speed due to depression. It will take me most of this year to undo the damage.


Edited by dbmod (01/30/12 07:30 PM)
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2217041 - 01/29/12 08:39 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: labug
Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
I think not being able to ask for what you need is a big problem. For my wife, it comes down to not believing you'll get what you need. She may not want me to do something with S that I did with D, but since I let her down before, won't consider that I will heed her wishes. So she won't ask, but instead boil over with anger until she's twitching with rage and has a tantrum - and at that moment, during the tantrum, I finally figure out what the anger is over.

It's going to take time + consistent change for her to believe you won't let her down. What kind of things did you let her down on?


Bipolar disorder. Neither of us understood that I had this before we got married.
I have to make myself a todo list to remember to do all the things that need to be done. When I'm down, I can abandon this list for months at a time. I might not pay the taxes. I might not file insurance paperwork and get stuck with a $500 medical bill.

Where I let her down was in not getting the help I needed in the way she wanted me to. I didn't want to medicate my problem away and it took me several years to accept that I'd have to. Because I wasn't doing it the way she wanted me to, I was secretive about it.

I was also secretive about my finances because I didn't want her to know when I was making money and when I wasn't.

There were times when I disagreed with her on a parenting decision with my D15 (her step-daughter), and overruled her. I thought we agreed at some point that 4 parents were too many for one kid, but W is quite bitter over it.

Damn, when I put it that way, I don't want to be married to me, either.

Originally Posted By: labug

Originally Posted By: AT
I wish I could get my W to uncork all the pain and let it out.

That's hard because it's really scary. Probably fear, fear that you won't understand, fear that you will reject her or fear that she's unlovable. Another great book, How to Change Your Marriage Without Talking About It.

I just ordered the book on Amazon. I still wish I could get her to let that stuff out. I mean... I wish I could convince her that she'd feel better afterward.

She has complained for a long time that I don't care about how she feels. I always thought that was an unfair thing to say. She is a difficult person to disagree with - always intense and boiling with anger at those that disagree with her. It became a lot easier to be passive-agressive.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2217046 - 01/29/12 08:45 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I feel exhausted. I just want to go on autopilot.

I need a source of strength. I wish I had a cheerleader.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2217100 - 01/30/12 01:15 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
Hey AT, I just caught up on your thread. I wish I had a cheerleader, too.

I'm going to look into the mindfulness book. I was meditating pretty consistently and then for some reason stopped around the holidays. My depression is much improved, in fact I would go so far as to say I'm not depressed but I am very sad sometimes. In a lot of ways I'm better than I've ever been but it's always good to have lots of tools in the toolbox.

Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
I'd consider giving her codependent no more to read, but I'd really rather have her in a mode of thinking of ways to improve our relationship, not escape it.

I don't understand this sentence. Could you explain a bit more?

Quote:
Where I let her down was in not getting the help I needed in the way she wanted me to. I didn't want to medicate my problem away and it took me several years to accept that I'd have to. Because I wasn't doing it the way she wanted me to, I was secretive about it.
I sometimes think I should have gone on antidepressants 2 years ago, but I didn't. I was making the best decisions I could at the time. I can't go back and change that, I have to move forward.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

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#2217210 - 01/30/12 01:20 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: labug
Hey AT, I just caught up on your thread. I wish I had a cheerleader, too.


I believe in you, labug. You're a great person.

Originally Posted By: labug
I'm going to look into the mindfulness book. I was meditating pretty consistently and then for some reason stopped around the holidays. My depression is much improved, in fact I would go so far as to say I'm not depressed but I am very sad sometimes. In a lot of ways I'm better than I've ever been but it's always good to have lots of tools in the toolbox.


When it comes to depression, it's best to have every possible defense. I could be doing better there. I know that going to bed early is a lot better for me than getting sleep deprived, but when I come home to my empty room with its empty bed and I start to miss my kids, and my wife, and... all my *stuff*, I have trouble getting to sleep.

Originally Posted By: labug

Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
I'd consider giving her codependent no more to read, but I'd really rather have her in a mode of thinking of ways to improve our relationship, not escape it.

I don't understand this sentence. Could you explain a bit more?

OK, I've never read the book. I just worry that it is more about leaving negative relationships behind more than building a better one. Maybe that is an unfounded fear.

Originally Posted By: labug
I sometimes think I should have gone on antidepressants 2 years ago, but I didn't. I was making the best decisions I could at the time. I can't go back and change that, I have to move forward.

So, I wouldn't do it the way I had done it before... We can't change that. But how do we prove that we'll make better decisions in the future?
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2217240 - 01/30/12 03:09 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I really fell off the wagon this weekend. I felt so insecure yesterday. I felt like this process was going to take forever.

W and I have been planning on signing this stipulation that I'll stay out of house for 3 months and she'll hold off on the divorce during that time. Our arrangement has been that I come over on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays to be with the kids. Last week, she specifically added wording to the still-unsigned agreement (has been taking weeks going back and forth between our lawyers and it's only a one-page document) - She added wording that said that could only come after work when I have the kids, not before.

I like having some time to be in the house by myself to handle household stuff, or just to breath in a warm, familiar place. She also added wording that I have to leave by 9 on those nights.

I took it as an attack and argued against it. So, Saturday morning, she said "Fine, whatever." and agreed to the changes. We had a separate exchange where I told her I had gotten a referral for an IC for her. She's been depressed and she confessed it to D15. She lashed out at me and accused me of conspiring with my lawyer to prove that W is the crazy one so I can take the kids away from her.

That got me to thinking about how she must be conspiring with her lawyer and how the new wording must be part of that. What is her angle? What am I losing?


I have a hard time giving her the "space" she needs. There is a part of my mind that can't let of of the idea that what she is asking for is wrong and makes her a terrible person. We're married! We have a responsibility to the kids to work things out. I'm sorry for my mistakes, but I don't believe I've earned this. Why should I have to go days at a time between seeing my kids? I've never been a part time father.

I feel like a fool for letting her walk all over me and kick me out of my house because she is not happy.

I just lost my patience. I talked too much. I emailed her at 2:30 in the morning. I texted her today.

Well, I have books coming in the mail. Maybe next time I can read a book instead.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2217326 - 01/30/12 07:45 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
Quote:
I believe in you, labug. You're a great person.


Yay Team! Thanks, AT.

All I'm going to say about your latest post is DETACH, DETACH, DETACH. Live your life, be with your kids when you can but let her go.

The sooner, the better.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

Top
#2217336 - 01/30/12 08:22 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: labug
Quote:
I believe in you, labug. You're a great person.


Yay Team! Thanks, AT.

All I'm going to say about your latest post is DETACH, DETACH, DETACH. Live your life, be with your kids when you can but let her go.

The sooner, the better.


I'm centering back on this now. I haven't done well in the last 24 hours and I hope it hasn't done too much damage.

I don't have trouble detaching from her. Well, not most of the time. But sometimes I get a little crazy about the kids.

I start thinking, "Stop being so selfish and destroying our family!" I don't need her back, but my kids do.

And I get frustrated with what I see as cake eating. I let her have the house and primary with the kids because she can't figure out how to heal when I'm in the house. She's living a fantasy life of happy separation. She still doesn't know what it's like to have the kids sleeping on the other side of town.


I just read tenbusrider's thread. My wife lost her gallblader after our D3, and she's had these wild irrational mood swings that everyone but her can see for years. It's very important to her that she not be perceived as the crazy one, but I'm pretty sure the reason she's so sensitive about it is that she knows I'm not making it up. It was so hard to talk to her about it before she went WAW.

I plan on asking her if she's had her thyroid checked out.

I feel like I don't sound like a DBer today. I'm doing it wrong. I guess I need to meditate on it.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2218302 - 02/02/12 05:46 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
A friend of mine said the thyroid thing is grasping at straws. Probably right. She said she was tested and came out on the low side of normal.

It would have been nice to have an explanation for her stormy moods. When I married her, I thought she was the crazy one. I wish she could accept that we're both the crazy one now. :-/

I feel like positive strides W and I have made in the last month have been overshadowed by new frictions over taxes, debts, and our separation agreement.

I asked my wife a few times to make an agreement with me that I would move out of the house for a time and she would put the marriage on hold, and she wouldn't have it. Eventually, I just made my own "agreement" with my terms on it, left the house, and asked her if she wanted to continue with it. That worked.

That was probably 6 weeks ago. We hadn't signed the agreement because it got shuttled back and forth between lawyers and there was some tweaking of it by both of us.

Today was the last day this document could be signed in order to avoid a court date tomorrow, and I finally got it done. The agreement says I have at least 3 months before she can put the divorce back on the court's schedule.

I have to find ways to bring my divorce busting to a new level during that time. My goal is to either
A) have her agree to come to counseling on a regular basis while we continue the arrangement and see if we can sort out our stuff
and/or
B) have me allowed to move back home while without pushing her out the door.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2218313 - 02/02/12 06:05 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I feel like what I have going on is that she is willing to wait and see about our relationship as long as I give her space, but she is not able to acknowledge this attitude to me, or possibly even to herself.

I have to read into the things she *doesn't* do in order to get this picture. Not the things she says.

And it seems like she might be receptive to my efforts at times, but she can't let me know about it. She has to be a mystery, and if I happen to get something right, it's a secret.

I'm so tired of this awful communication.


Yesterday, D15 who struggles with depression and anxiety, was pretty much having a breakdown. She sat down with W and I and cried about a lot of things, but one thing she kept coming back to is "what is the point" of even getting up in the morning if things can't work out between people. She saw other marriages failing, but she thought W and I would be together forever because we loved each other so much, despite our flaws. We were committed.

At one point, D15 is desperately fishing for W to say that she will try to save the marriage. I'm struggling to give D15 the picture that W is not reachable right now, and she isn't capable of saying anything positive right now, but she isn't running away either, and we have some time to work this out. But you can't really say that in front of the WAS, so the conversation is tortured.

W comes out and says, "You're right. There may be no point to marriage. I know people stay together in other cultures and at other times. People can't make that promise to each other." She keeps on going like that, and I'm going nuts inside.

My D15 is hurting so bad and W is so damaged by this process that she can't say anything that is not hurtful. I can see the look on her face. W can't look at anyone in the eyes. She looks like a trapped animal.

I can see the pressure on her, and I wish D15 would take it off because, as much as it makes sense that my wife might react compassionately to seeing someone she loves in pain, she just can't. I wanted to ask her to leave. Then D15's biological mom got there and the situation was diffused.

After D15 left with her mom, W ran out of the house after 11:00 PM for a burger from Wendy's. Stress eating.

I'm going to try extra hard to keep distance from W for the next two weeks. On 2/14 I have a session with a therapist that I hope she'll come to if I keep pressure off in between.

I have to find some new 180s and get on them and make sure I'm keeping up the ones I have already started.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2218379 - 02/02/12 11:02 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
AT said:
I feel like what I have going on is that she is willing to wait and see about our relationship as long as I give her space, but she is not able to acknowledge this attitude to me, or possibly even to herself.

Ces- I see this pattern noted a lot on posts on the board. My W has even said at times I'm doing the right things but it actually makes her mad because of where our marriage had to get to see it happen.

AT Said:
W comes out and says, "You're right. There may be no point to marriage. I know people stay together in other cultures and at other times. People can't make that promise to each other." She keeps on going like that, and I'm going nuts inside

Ces - This is rough. Sorry man. My wife has made some "life is tough" statements as well. W has been hurt and she's even said she doesn't want the kids to get their hopes up about life always being rosy. But what I don't think she realizes is she's demonstrating a life that has very little hope. How depressing is that????

So sorry about your daughter. That's a really tough spot to be in. Is she talking to any counselors?

What 180s are you doing right now for you? Any idea which ones you want to try next?
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2218386 - 02/02/12 11:27 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: ces67
So sorry about your daughter. That's a really tough spot to be in. Is she talking to any counselors?

What 180s are you doing right now for you? Any idea which ones you want to try next?


Daughter has lots of therapists and people who love her trying to support her, but I'm starting to wonder if she has to somehow hit rock bottom before she makes some changes in her life. She can't keep friends because she is too much of a burden on them emotionally.

My big 180 was leaving the house and accepting some form of separation as a positive thing for the marriage. That is in effect now.

It is unclear to me whether I should try a 180 about contact with the wife. She needs more space, so I'm going to make an extra effort to see that she has plenty over the next two weeks, but I'm not sure I should be avoiding her when she does want to talk.

There are 180s on stuff that don't matter any more. I wasn't transparent about some things in the past and it was big trouble. I'm transparent now, but she doesn't want to know.

I don't really know what is next. There is something I need to work on. I have a todo list with terrible stuff on there that hasn't been getting done. I need to keep swinging at that list every day. I don't know if that's a 180. That's just a working-on-me thing that I do. I do a lot of working on me.

I need a lot of work, honestly...
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2219803 - 02/07/12 10:35 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I've gone a long time saying "I'm doing everything I can" to fix my marriage. Earlier on, I think it was true, but I certainly sank into a slump.

I think I get better at communicating all the time - better at listening and validating and letting W know I'm thinking differently about us.

I still think I'd make her a great husband if she'll have me. But I'm still struggling with depression and it's side effects. After all this time of trying to sort myself out, though I am a lot better in plenty of ways, I still have days where I refuse to look at my todo list and just coast through the day in a cloud.

So I figured out what my next two 180s are. The first is to start taking care of myself like it's my job. Specifically, I have to get to sleep every day at a reasonable time. I'm going to push that hard.

The other one is to start showing up to things 10 minutes early instead of 5 minutes late.


Things are still hot and cold with the wife. Detachment makes that so much easier to handle. She has been choosing to stay for dinner on the nights I come to be with the kids rather than rushing out of the house. I don't say anything one way or the other, but it used to be one of my complaints about this whole thing - just because the parents are taking some time to work things out doesn't mean the kids always have to live in a single-parent home where no one gets enough attention and everything is always a mess because it is too hard to keep up.

My wife got a little scary in the days running up to when we signed our informal separation agreement, but she's been very pleasant since then.

We got into an argument about money today, but I think it was a productive one. I wasn't defensive and tried to own up for my mistakes.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2222592 - 02/16/12 10:14 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Hey AT,

Just checking in on you. You hanging in there?
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2223510 - 02/19/12 11:32 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Yeah. I keep coming back and lurking, but haven't had a lot to say myself. Ups and downs. Last week I told my IC that I saw a lot of positive signs for the marriage, and that I was feeling good about myself in general.

I didn't resist the urge to get W something for Valentine's Day. A small box of chocolates. well... It wasn't just a box of chocolates.

I've had a bad feeling most of the last week. W is more withdrawn, and it's been harder to have good times. Anger all the time, coming out sideways. It hasn't really been that bad, but I feel like we're backsliding or at least reaching a plateau.

I've been thinking of checking in to say, "I'm stuck on my marriage busting and I just don't know what to do next."

Saturday night, before I left the house, I asked her to tell me if there was anything I was doing right. This was during a conversation that went sideways and I don't even remember why. She couldn't answer, and I left the house. I've made a point of always taking the trash out even when I only stop in the house for a couple of minutes. This time I didn't. I didn't think she was noticing and I didn't feel appreciated and I did feel angry. She texted me shortly after I left and basically said that she almost said that she appreciated that I always take the trash out, but now I'm not doing that.

Today we talked again. W invited me over to the house for lunch and then later for after dinner/bedtime stuff with the kids. After the kids went to bed, I brought up something that had made her mad and told her that our problems come down to one primary disagreement - I don't think living with me means she has to be miserable. I've made her expect that I will ignore her, disregard her, and not be sensitive to her feelings and needs.

But I'm committed to being the best husband and father I can be, and over time I'll prove it.

The scuffle we had earlier was because I asked her if she wanted me to get S6 to clean up some toys instead of reading with me for a while, and W got really upset that I was insinuating that she needed *my* help to do anything! Her interpretation was so wrong I didn't know what to do, but I bit my tongue until we could talk about it later and that's when I said I know she's angry about something real, but I think she misunderstood what I was saying.

I'm not saying that she can't handle the kids without me. We both manage alone, almost every single night. Even though we can manage, the kids get a little less than they would with two parents present, and I am really glad that had a chance to both give them something tonight. She tried to retreat into saying "well, I'm evil and I'm destroying the kids, so just leave me alone."

I told her that I understood that she was doing what she had to do and left her alone of a few minutes.

When I came back, I told her that I believe that it is my responsibility to show her that she will be listened to and respected and that her feelings will considered and her needs will be met, and that over time, she will see me as the husband she wants in her family. And I asked her what, if anything, I was doing right or if anything came to mind that I should be doing differently.

I could see that she actually wanted to say something. I listened closely.

And she said, "I don't know." She used to say that in therapy. "What can he do to show you X", therapist would say. W would say, "I don't know".

I think she's completely trapped in her anger and misery that she just can't see a way out.

She did go on this time, though. She looked like she was on the verge of tears and said that she really wanted to miss me, but it wasn't happening. That was the point of the separation for her. She said maybe there hasn't been enough space or enough time, but every time she sees me, she gets tense over her whole body.

Anyway, I told her we might need to adjust the way we are doing our separation right now. I told her maybe W and I should talk to one of the coaches here over the phone and see what they can suggest.

She said, "I'll think about it", which probably means she'll do it but doesn't want to commit.

I think I may have nearly gotten my wife to admit that while she doesn't want things to work out between us, she does want to want things to work out.

I think that's my next step. I'll ask W to talk to a coach or one of our therapists with me about adjusting our separation so she can feel that she misses me. Or something. crud, I'm tired.

You probably are too, if you read that whole thing. Sorry.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2223556 - 02/20/12 09:40 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Hey AT, good to get to catch up. That's sounds like a lot of conversations going on.

I'm certainly not the best at DBing but IMO, you may want to think about how much you tell your W about what you are doing. It may be better for her to "see" what is happening vs. you telling her what "will be" or "is" happening.

For me, it gets very frustrating that I do so much and it does not seem to be acknowledged. But when I have brought it up, its caused my W to get very frustrated. Everybody's different so ask yourself what's working and what's not.

As far as the "wanting to miss you" part. That is a sign of some effort. Just be prepared that this is not linear. Your W may bounce around this concept in both directions. That is her internal wrestling so try not to take it upon yourself. It's not easy but try.

Good luck getting into joint sessions of some sort.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2224074 - 02/21/12 11:10 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I was at the house tonight - Tuesday is one of my nights with the kids - and after I got the kids to bed I had a short talk with my wife.

I told her that what I heard her saying the other night was that she doesn't want things to be better for us but she wants to want them to be better. I mentioned how things have been better for us recently, but since our money issues are front and center right now, everything is really tense. I said that I'd back away and give her more time and I think things will get better again as our financial situation improves. I asked her again if there is anything she thinks I could be doing better.

She said, "I don't know", which is what she has been saying for months and months whenever anyone asks "What can" or "How can" or "When can" questions. She has no answer. It's hard for me to believe she has that little imagination. It makes you wonder if she is just unwilling to share her thoughts.

She still texts her EA buddy constantly, and it seems like even more so when I'm stressing her out. I haven't mentioned it to her in months, but I really wish it would stop.

Anyhow, I asked her if she'd be willing to talk to someone who can help us see what I would have to do differently to make our arrangement work out better. She said yes.

Yay!

So, I'm going to call the db people and ask if it makes sense to have a phone call with one of the coaches with both my wife and I on the line, and whether I should have a session first.

Otherwise, I'll bring her to see my IC Tuesday.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2224177 - 02/22/12 12:07 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
So I have the smallest sliver of an "in" to start something positive with my wife right now. She doesn't want marriage counseling, but is willing to meet with someone to help make sure our trial separation is working so that she might feel that she misses me and wants me back in her life.

I called MWD's office to set up something with Laurie, who I have spoken with twice before. Virginia said that with this glimmer of hope, I should act as soon as possible, but she also said that Laurie would need an hour alone with me, an hour alone with my wife, then an hour with us together. She offered me a deal at $360 for another 3-session pack, but I literally have no money.

W and I are catching up on bills from my period of less-than-full employment. I owe my lawyer $300.

Maybe I could borrow the money from family or something, but I'm just not sure that's the wise thing to do. My wife barely wants to do this and is willing because I've already paid for the one appointment. She is not going to approve of spending more money on it, even though it could be the best spent money we've ever had in the long run.

Not getting divorced will save us a ton of money. There may be other benefits, as well.

What do you think?
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2224352 - 02/22/12 09:53 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Someone in my family is letting me borrow the money until I can pay them back. I have some side work next week that will cover half of it, and more coming the next week to cover the other half.

So, I think I'm in for doing the sessions with a coach. I called W today and told her that Laurie wanted to meet with her separately and that didn't turn her off at all. I'm hopeful that this will give our process a little more shape and less waiting and hoping for the best.

If there are additional concessions that I have to make to help repair my marriage (aside from leaving my home, only seeing my kids half the week, etc, etc), I feel comfortable knowing someone pro-marriage will be mediating that discussion.

So... This has been a good day. I know other people have it worse. I'll take it.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2224375 - 02/23/12 01:22 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
NLW Offline
Member

Registered: 09/08/11
Posts: 1283
AT,

This sounds like good progress. I think you're doing the right thing going all out on this opportunity with your W.

It's been a fantasy of mine for a while now that my H might agree to counselling and I could suggest a DB coach.

I'm hanging out to hear how it turns out - and whether anyone else has had the opportunity to go down this route with their spouse?

Top
#2224406 - 02/23/12 08:38 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: NLW]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
hey AT, glad to hear some signs of opportunity. I hope this helps start some growth and renewal. It will still take a while so keep the patience and the faith!
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2224465 - 02/23/12 01:14 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: ces67
hey AT, glad to hear some signs of opportunity. I hope this helps start some growth and renewal. It will still take a while so keep the patience and the faith!


Thanks. I'm not really getting excited. My wife's language is quite guarded. She doesn't want to do anything to improve our R, and she doesn't miss me, but she *wants* to miss me.

Given how protective my W is being about her walls right now, I'm not expecting a big breakthrough or her to acknowledge any positive feelings or thoughts. I expect the outcome of the talk with my coach to involve more concessions, goals, and tasks for me, while my wife continues to remain reserved.

I am expecting the coaching involving my wife, to increase the chances of making improvements in the short term and reducing the time it takes. But I know it will still be a long road. My 8th wedding anniversary is August 28th. My goal is to get re-commitment by then. I've learned I can let this take as long as it needs for my wife. My main concern is for my kids and the strain this puts on them.

So, "I'm not really getting excited." It's not that this gives me hope, but that it vindicates the hope and faith that I already had. I'm quite pleased with this development and am looking forward to seeing how it pans out.

Originally Posted By: ces67
hey AT, glad to hear some signs of opportunity. I hope this helps start some growth and renewal. It will still take a while so keep the patience and the faith!


So, yes, I hope this sends us a little faster down the road of growth and renewal.

I'd like to say a bit about faith, though. Drafting...
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2224476 - 02/23/12 02:24 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Faith is believing without seeing. It is not rational, but it is a driving and guiding force that paves the way for change. It may not be realistic or reasonable, but it might just the only way to imagine a better world and to bring it into being, when the universe seems to be set against you.

I imagine a lot of us here have some abandonment issues - and that drives us to be willing to do anything to keep our R's together. I don't believe that alone is effectively keeping many marriages together. That fear of abandonment has actually been a cancer in our relationships with our spouses, and something that has to be overcome if we are to become the strong, healthy people that will draw our once-partners back to us. Those fears probably led to negative patterns that sabotaged our marriages. We can't hope to rebuild our marriages successfully until we can define new healthy patterns.

It is our belief in marriage itself, not the act of hanging onto someone else, that keeps us here. We are believers, and we hold the bond of marriage to be sacred. I think most of us eventually see that we didn't hold up our end of the bargain in our first go-round, but we will do our damnedest to put things right and heal the sacred bonds we all made.

I mention this because when I first felt the bomb drop, it pulled the rug out from under me and shattered every dream I had for myself and my family. I was devastated. Truly. I am a naturally optimistic person, and I always had a certain amount of faith that things will just work out alright, because they usually do. I lost that.

My wife said in therapy shortly after the bomb that it was like my soul was shattered and that I couldn't access it, so I held onto hers instead. That was a grim image. And she wasn't talking about just after the devastation of hearing, "I think I need a separation.". I had been depressed for a while and it was taking a toll on her.

Well, I've moved on and become stronger in a lot of ways, and we say you have to Get A Life and improve yourself for yourself, and that's all true. But I have to say the source of my strength was actually my belief in Marriage. That defined who I was and why I had to get up in the morning. I needed to be the best father I could be and become the husband my wife would be a fool to leave because I believed in marriage and family.

Eventually, I believed in myself, too.


I mention this all because I am an atheist. I don't believe that there is a god that has a personal interest in my life or who affects the events of the world or the people around me. It sounds agnostic when I phrase it that way, but trust me, I'm an atheist. I'm happy that way. Don't worry about it. Please.

It can be hard, as an atheist, when your worldview is marginalized, especially when it comes to self-help and support groups. Give yourself over to a higher power? Pray? Not believing in a god is a dirty subject, it will cause arguments that make no sense and never end, and you just don't bring it up.

When you're a non-believer, and you're stricken with grief and powerless to respond, it is hard to know exactly where to turn, though you know others can turn to their deity or their belief system for strength and hope.

Well, non-believers, what they say is true; you need belief and faith to get through this. Those of us who don't believe in a god still have a moral life and we still believe in big things - Justice, Freedom, the Value of Life, Humanity, Community, Family, stuff like that.

Well, believing in justice and family wasn't helping me out a lot at first. I was bitter and angry. But I found that my belief in Marriage itself was a source of strength for me. Eventually, that lead to a stronger belief in myself as I changed my thoughts and behaviors to be in line with my belief in marriage.

And I found that I could have faith in what I was doing, so long as I knew that I was fighting as compassionately and effectively as I knew how for my family. It is scary to let go of uncertainty and just act as if your best intentions for your life will come to pass - you have to stick with it, but it is so worth it. It was especially hard for me to move out of my house to give my wife the "space" she needed, when I have no way of knowing whether it really helps. It's taken me a while to understand what space is for. It has been painful, but I'm really glad I did it.

In the end, I have belief and faith in myself and that is an incredibly powerful positive force.

Also, about surrender - as an atheist, you might be unsure how to surrender to a higher power. Eventually, you can surrender yourself to the naked fact that you can't control so much of what is important to you, and you have to just let it happen. You can let go.

You can let go of what you can't change, work on what you can, and sometimes even have the wisdom to tell the difference - all without God.

You can have faith - belief without knowing. You can find the strength to act as if your dreams will come true, even if you don't have any evidence at the moment to prove that it will.

If you don't or can't believe in God, find strength in Doing What Is Right and eventually, transfer that strength right down into the center of you.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2224586 - 02/23/12 11:04 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
AT, thanks for the explanation. We have common ground in that we want to restore our marriages, live better lives of integrity and be the best we can be. We believe things can be better.

Thank for taking the time to read my sitch and offer support. I'm here for you as well.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2225266 - 02/26/12 08:19 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
So, I've mentioned that I'm feeling more confident and controlled, and able to handle the ups and downs with some distance and poise.

Obviously I'm due for a slip-up, then...

Yesterday, I messed up. Yesterday, I allowed myself to believe my wife would probably let me spend an extra night at the house rather than leaving at 11PM, driving home, then driving back for church in the morning. I believe that if I had just stayed until 11 (at 8:45, we were about to start a game of Risk with some friends), she would have said, "OK, sleep here.". I'm almost positive of it. She's been doing that frequently, and really... I've been so well behaved.

But I wanted to hear it up front. I asked her to think about it 2-3 days in advance. No answer. I asked her again Friday, and once again Saturday to think about it. When I finally asked her for an answer Saturday night, she said no.

I just felt so angry. Reasonable request. Rrrgh! I was just about to put the kids clothes in the laundry and take out the garbage and decided to do neither instead and leave early. I calmly walked away and prepared to leave.

Then ten minutes later, I came back and swore at her. Basically, "WTF is this? Why do you have to behave this way?" Friends looked on with horrified looks. Wife just looked dumb like I was speaking another language.


I realized I'm actually feeling a lot of anxiety right now. I'm anxious her EA is getting in the way more than before. I have been not chasing her, and yet, she's been pushing me away. Something feels wrong. I have no way of knowing what is up, but that doesn't make things better.

I'm talking to a coach on Monday, W is talking to her on Tuesday, and we'll probably both talk to her at a later time. It's probably a big deal that W consented to this. And it's probably really great for us.

But the vibe I'm getting from my wife is not good, I do not understand it, and it's making me really anxious.

I know I have to just let this happen, but I'm really anxious to know what will happen in our coaching sessions. It's taking a lot more effort than usual to just live in the here-and-now.

I am learning how to do it though. And reminding myself never to allow my happiness to depend on anything my wife does.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2225287 - 02/26/12 10:27 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
AT - Sounds like you know what to do. Its just the practice and habit of taking that knowledge and making it part of who you are. It takes time, practice, effort and... yep, patience. Patience for yourself first and also for your W.

Hope the coaching sessions go well. Try and let go of the expectations.

(and I've already mentioned it to Crimson, but I'm typically preaching to myself on these types of comments...)
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2225291 - 02/26/12 10:54 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Thanks, ces. yes, I think I know what I have to do. That is pretty recent, really. I wish I had a better handle on this long ago and it didn't get this far.

Patience for the W. Yes.

I want my kids back. I want my kids to have their dad back. Waiting is hard.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2225329 - 02/27/12 07:59 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Same here. I've always wanted to be a great husband and one my W would love. I can get mad at myself for not realizing I wasn't really doing what I wanted to do and was contributing to my W's bad feelings.

I've wished many times to go back with the knowledge I have now for a "do over" but that's not going to happen. So we move forward with the new start now and WITH the knowledge we've gained. Sad truth is that either we or our spouses tend to bring the past baggage along as well which makes the journey more difficult. But on we go...
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2225543 - 02/27/12 09:39 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I talked to Laurie, the Divorce Busting coach today. I caught her up on my sitch and she asked about goals for the upcoming call with both my wife and I.

I mentioned that my wife thinks she needs more space before she can "miss" me, and that was the main point of the call - to figure out what we need to do with our separation to make it as productive as possible. I want my family back, dammit.

I also mentioned how my wife said (and clearly eggagerated) that every email I send her upsets her. I have already cut down a lot on the emails I send to the wife, and it's hard to see how I can cut down much more. It's hard to let go of the idea that W is just being unfair and a bad sport for not allowing good communication.

I'm having a hard time because 2 or three weeks ago, my wife was seeking out time and communication more and more with me, before we started talking about money again. I don't *want* to take a giant step back. frown

Anyway, I am going to try to find ways to initiate less communication and hopefully soon she'll come looking for me again.


Laurie also said not to stop on the acts of service as I have been tempted to do many times. If it is not upsetting W, do it because W seems to notice even if she is not able to acknowledge.

The real problem I'll continue to wrestle with this week is how to come up with a plan for dealing with finances and bills. Laurie says find a way to settle everything and let everything follow a clear plan so W and I just don't have to talk about it any more. "It" being that it's going to take all of 2012 for me to erase the debt of 2011.

The plan is not the hard part - it's getting W to agree with or acknowledge the plan.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2225555 - 02/27/12 10:00 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Other stuff I'm trying to change about me continues to be hard work. I'm trying to change my normal mode of operation to 10 minutes early for things rather than 5 minutes late.

I've had some success at it, and I realize it is something I have to put conscious effort into not keeping my old bad habit (finding other activities to fill time until the last possible moment), but I've also had some failures.

I was late to pick up my daughter for school the week before last and late to church the last two weeks. Today, I'm going to get to bed on time and continue that for the rest of the week and see if I can get this being-on-time-for-stuff under control.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2225941 - 02/28/12 11:38 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
My wife talked to Laurie today. I told Laurie when I talked to her yesterday that the goal of the call today was to get the three of us talking at the same time. Laurie was thinking that she could give my W some suggestions to share for us to work on and we could meet again in a few weeks. Laurie thought that somehow my W would take something constructive out of their conversation and tell me about it.

Ha!

I really didn't want to badger my W about it, so I just asked when we can have a conversation when we're all together.

"I don't think I'll be doing that."

So... frustrating. I wish I had insisted on a call together so there could be some communication.

-- BUT --

The woman who came home and had nothing to say to me about ever talking to Laurie again was talking to me. No shark eyes. No tense as a board. No avoiding looking in my direction. Some replies had more than one word. We talked about some things.

She had next to nothing to contribute on the subject of what we should be doing differently or what should be different so that things could improve.

But she was not crawling out of her skin to be in the same room with me.


The only thing she gave me was that she wants to separate our finances to reduce her anxiety.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2225975 - 02/29/12 09:17 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I woke up frustrated and angry with my wife's continued behavior. I'm so tired of the misery. Now I want to do and say every wrong thing.

I want to write her a letter and remind her that it is possible improve our relationship and it is obviously true but she continues to refuse to be part of that. Instead, she has made herself an enemy to our children's happiness and well-being. She could have just about anything she wants if she would just say, "I value our marriage. I'm willing to do something to help repair it. I need X"

She did tell me something she wants yesterday - she wants to separate our finances to reduce her anxiety.

I'm willing to separate our finances, but I have a feeling that what she wants is:

1) I continue to pay so that she can live in our marital home with the kids.
2) I continue to spend money on living outside of the house.
3) I carry all the debt - about 18,000 worth - while she saves money for a divorce.

I guess I need to ask her once I calm down.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2225986 - 02/29/12 09:59 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Vent here and be calm before the conversation. Good plan.

If it truly is a conversation, then be prepared to explain your wants for the finances and what the needs of the family are. Does she work outside the home?
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2226055 - 02/29/12 12:21 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
W is well-paid. My salary is 75k, hers is around 55K. Maybe she's up to 60 now.

The problem is that I was underemployed for most of 2011. I was freelancing, and had work, but I couldn't keep up with it because I was so devastated because of the probable divorce. Thus the 18K in debt.

I'm pretty sure she wants the debt to be my problem. I can't afford it. I'm financially screwed if we don't stay together, move back into one house, and work this out.

I consider the debt something we created together.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226060 - 02/29/12 12:31 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Feel that pain. I was out of work for 15 months prior to my current job. My package covered 10 and I was on unemployment for the rest. Our debt is sizably larger than that amount (too embarrassed to give the figure).

How would you separate the finances? Can you show any of the debt to be directly related to your W?
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2226126 - 02/29/12 03:32 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I've figured out what to do. I'm going to send an email to my wife asking, "Why don't you want things to be better. What do you win by continuing to be miserable?". I think that will fix everything.

SO FRUSTRATED

Regarding the debt - Most of it was wracked up from every day expenses - groceries, gas, bills, etc - and since we had no money, I did not pay my quarterly taxes. IRS needs to get paid.

I think my wife thinks that *I* didn't pay the IRS, so it's my fault. If I paid the IRS, we'd have lost the house, starved to death, and filed for bankruptcy.

As for the time out of work... I needed her support. She gave me the opposite. Now she wants the debt to be my problem.

$2500 of the debt is the cost of my lawyer, which I wouldn't have had to spend if she hadn't started this mess.

I think I see three options here
Plan A) We act in the best interest of the family. I move home and we pool our resources to get rid of the debt and live a comfortable life. Also, as a bonus, we could have communication and improve our relationship.

Plan B) W takes all. I pay W large $$$ every week so she can live with the kids in our house without me. I live in a 1-bedroom slum, and have enough money left over to take a little over a year to pay off the debt, so long as nothing happens - no unexpected expenses. For a year.

Plan C) Eff this, dammit. I come back home. She leaves. She won't pay me child support, so I can't afford the house. We'll foreclose on it and I'll declare bankruptcy. Ok. I just looked at the numbers again. If she takes half the debt with her when she goes, I can actually scrape by and pay the debt off after a little more than a year and keep the house. maybe. Not including the money for the rest of our divorce.

Ugh.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226345 - 03/01/12 09:53 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm miserable again. And distracted. What can I write/say/do to change my situation?

I've had a fine outlook most days in the last month. The lack of any kind of apparently productive outcome from my wife's call with the marriage coach has been a blow to my confidence.

Why am I not allowed to know when she changes her mind why she changes her mind. Actually, I don't even know when she changes her mind about things.

I spend way too much energy trying to figure her out. I know I have to let go. It's hard.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226347 - 03/01/12 09:55 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
Mach1 Offline
Member

Registered: 11/04/08
Posts: 3692
Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying

I spend way too much energy trying to figure her out. I know I have to let go. It's hard.



Yep...

What's your plan to do this ???

Top
#2226357 - 03/01/12 10:22 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: Mach1]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Have you ever seen Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind? I'd have my memory erased, but I'd probably just fall in love with her again...
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226361 - 03/01/12 10:32 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
In all seriousness, I'm leaning toward trying to go cold turkey on emails and texts. I just re-read a bunch of my emails and my feelings that I have been really restrained in sending her R-heavy emails is mostly in my head.

If I only tell her 10% of what I'm thinking, it's still an email every 3 days or so. And when I do send them, I stare at the screen for an hour for a two-paragraph email because I want to make sure I get it right.

So, I need to do like Laurie said and make it so we don't have to talk about money any more. We need to settle exactly how we are separating finances so there is no need to talk about it. Then I can try to let all communication I initiate to be about the kids.

She does initiate communication with me on all sorts of subjects. Just not subjects like, "I've noticed you've made an extra effort to keep X clean. Thanks." or "I wish you wouldn't do X because it upsets me."

We have, I think, 2 months left in our current separation agreement. After that, I am free to come back home and she is free to re-initiate the divorce.

My goal is that in that time she agrees to start seeing someone with me on a regular basis then we can negotiate about how often I'm back at the house. Or I move back in and try to keep my distance and hope she doesn't jump right back on the D-train.

I probably need a better plan than that. Did you have any suggestions?
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226371 - 03/01/12 10:43 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
On days like this, I can't keep my mind on now. It goes back. We were in love. We were so happy. Life was... fantastic. What I had always dreamed of. Walks in the park with the kids and a basket full of picnic food. Where did it go?

And it goes to the future. Will living in two houses break my youngest daughter the way it broke my oldest? By middle school, the kids of divorce and the kids of solid homes have mostly separated into two groups. My kids will go over to their friend's house with the alcoholic parent and the fish-out-of-water step-parent and have to decide whether to join in when their friends start with the drinking and drugs.

I know kids with married parents have problems, too. "Kids are resilient. They will bounce back from this." Grr! I hate it when people say that. Even more than I hate when they say, "If it's meant to be, then.." whatever it is they say. I'm not sure what people say after that because the fatalism makes everything I see and hear go red, if that is possible.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226382 - 03/01/12 10:59 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
Mach1 Offline
Member

Registered: 11/04/08
Posts: 3692
Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
On days like this, I can't keep my mind on now. It goes back. We were in love. We were so happy. Life was... fantastic. What I had always dreamed of. Walks in the park with the kids and a basket full of picnic food. Where did it go?


And you have to honor those memories. If not, you will become what you have accused your spouse of being.

You were happy, and in love. Doesn't mean it can't happen again....

Cherish and honor that part, and own the bad parts too. One can't go without the other.

Smile when you think of those things. Without all of them, you wouldn't have to worry about this....... \/ \/ \/


Quote:

And it goes to the future. Will living in two houses break my youngest daughter the way it broke my oldest? By middle school, the kids of divorce and the kids of solid homes have mostly separated into two groups. My kids will go over to their friend's house with the alcoholic parent and the fish-out-of-water step-parent and have to decide whether to join in when their friends start with the drinking and drugs.

I know kids with married parents have problems, too. "Kids are resilient. They will bounce back from this." Grr! I hate it when people say that. Even more than I hate when they say, "If it's meant to be, then.." whatever it is they say. I'm not sure what people say after that because the fatalism makes everything I see and hear go red, if that is possible.


Kids are resilient...although that doesn't happen automatically.

It becomes more of what they see. Kids learn from watching the actions of the people they love the most. They respect, and emulate what they want to be like. We, as parents, seldom to have a chance to see that. The daily aspects of life get in the way. It comes so natural to us, and to them, that we fail to bear witness to it.

They feed off of strength, and they learn character through their parents actions. They will triumph, and they will struggle. Love them through both, and show them the way.

Through that, they BECOME resilient....

They absorb what we teach...

Don't be afraid to tell them that it is NOT okay to do the things that you know they shouldn't.

Don't be afraid to let them F up too...

Top
#2226431 - 03/01/12 01:11 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: Mach1]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm starting to feel calm again. And I've realized that I can be stronger and be doing better at this.

The great thing about how I've sent her an email every couple of days for the last few months is that I can stop and she'll notice right away. It's a place I can demonstrate change and willingness to change.

And for the next month, I will work really hard on not trying to change her mind. I don't know if I know how to have an R-conversation with her without asking leading questions or tugging on her emotions.

I have to accept that in her own limited way, she is giving us time to get better. So, if we have two months, I'll work on giving space as much as possible for two months. I'll learn how to cook. I'll put my love and effort into the house our children live in and give my kids as close to 100% dad as we can manage.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226701 - 03/02/12 10:11 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm trying to do a 180 on cooking. My wife always made dinner and I know she thinks that I can't or won't do it. Well, I can and I will, but I stink pretty badly at it.

It's not just making dinner, but making dinner while I try to keep S6 and D3 from killing each other or trashing the house without resorting to TV babysitter.

S6 asked for mac & cheese this morning, but I'm not enthused about that since it was one of my go-to foods all this time I have not known how to cook. Maybe I can find a way to make the mac&cheese, but make it a side.

Maybe I can do something with chicken, broccoli, tomatoes... I want to try stir fry again, but that seems like an odd fit with mac&cheese. I should just go with stir-fry. Kids are not going to be unhappy with that on the table.

And I'll get some respect from the wife. I know the 180s are supposed to be for me, but I'm going to do the things she notices.

One of my GAL activities actually has little appeal to my wife and is not very lifey, so I've been having doubts about it. I have been spending a lot of time working on a facebook game, which means time spent alone on the computer working away. Having the time and energy to do it is a 180. I've toyed with making a game most of my life with lots of starts and halfway done projects. I'm doing this.

When I have something online for other people to play, my W will respect that, but for the time being, producing it is actually isolating me.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2226704 - 03/02/12 10:15 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
And I'll get some respect from the wife. I know the 180s are supposed to be for me, but I'm going to do the things she notices.

When I have something online for other people to play, my W will respect that, but for the time being, producing it is actually isolating me.


How will you take it if your W doesn't respond with respect?
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2226718 - 03/02/12 10:40 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
RoRoinMD Offline
Member

Registered: 01/17/12
Posts: 871
AlwaysTrying - invest in a crockpot. Dump meat, veggies, whatever in, set it, and forget it!

Google crockpot recipes and you'll find alot of info.

Don't be expecting angels to start singing when you do cook your first meal. (j/k) NO expecations from your wife, remember!!!!
_________________________
Me:34
H:38
SS:19 - lives in NC with his mom
M:3
Bomb #1: 1/3/12 - We're not compatible. I want out.
Bomb #2: 1/12/12 - Found out about EA/PA
H moves out 10/2/12

Top
#2226729 - 03/02/12 10:51 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: RoRoinMD]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
My wife doesn't have to respect the food. She only criticized what I made last Saturday. But she did come to dinner, and I liked that. She liked that I made something, just not the result so much.

Respect from the kids is enough reason to do it. Yeah, I'm not going to be upset if W pretends not to care, but I know that she does care, and it matters to everyone else. No big deal, but I'm choosing this as a 180 rather than just making some ravioli because I know it is something she'll notice.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2227280 - 03/03/12 11:08 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Dinner was a success/disaster. I succeeded in bringing people closer to me. My wife, D15, and two family friends probably would not have been over for dinner if I was making mac&cheese.

I also made some pretty fantastic blunders. Kids were trying to kill each other as I was starting dinner, and diffusing the situation distracted me. I forgot to make the rice. Stir-fry... no rice. I'll try again next week.

Meanwhile, W was in the bedroom being by herself while I wrestled with the situation. At one point, I was tempted to call her and ask for help, then I remembered how good it feels to ask her for help and decided against it. Just as I felt I was getting things back under control with the kids, she came out and took S6 upstairs to read.

After dinner, W made a comment along the lines of "Isn't so easy, is it?" to me. I don't think I showed her how frustrated this made me. I just said that I know it's not easy and I never ever said anything different. I know it is hard to put dinner on the table without using the TV as a babysitter. I'm extremely angry about how we are short-changing our kids.

Her comment just seemed so out-of-touch to me.

So my new 180 is - I'm not going to tell her. I'm not going to email her, call her, or text her about it.

I've just spent 29 hours at the house, with my kids. It feels like home, for a short while. It's just one day out of the week I get to have that. I know other people have it worse, but getting to sleep Saturday night after leaving my home and coming to my little room just [censored].

It's a sinking feeling leaving that house, and it happens every time. And the sinking doesn't stop for hours and hours. I end up surfing youtube until 3AM because I don't know what else to do to make myself feel OK.

Not tonight. I felt the sink, but I'm going to just go to sleep and wake up in plenty of time for church for once.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2227286 - 03/03/12 11:37 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Hange in there AT, Good for you for putting in all the effort. Focus on the successes. Its got to be frustrating to make the effort and get a remark like that. Hope you can acknowledge the hurt and just move on.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2227370 - 03/04/12 11:11 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
adinva Offline
Member

Registered: 09/06/11
Posts: 2762
Loc: VA
Her comment that it is't so easy is it could have provided (could still provide) an opportunity to understand her better if you stop being defensive. People don't say things like that just to push your buttons, they say it from their frame of reference. She obviously felt at some point that she was working harder than you appreciated or understood. You might accept that she perceived things that way, even if you think you did understand and appreciate. She did not, or those words wouldn't have occurred to her.

I'm not saying mind read, I'm saying the opposite. Take a stab at understanding what she's saying and maybe even ask her about it in a non-defensive way.
_________________________
Adinva 48 H48
T22 M19 S16 S14
6/15/11 IDLY
6/11-12/12 in-home sep
12/16/12 H moved out
Nothing signed yet
____
Be the change you want to see in the world (Gandhi)

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#2227378 - 03/04/12 12:07 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: adinva]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
When I first read this last night, I thought much the same as Ad. It's not easy and you found that out and before you say, but... view it from her side of the coin.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

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#2227479 - 03/04/12 06:58 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
adinva, labug, thank you for pointing that out.

I am going to try to use this as an opportunity to understand.

What she said upset me because I have always been there making it as easy as possible. If she was making dinner, I had the kids and was seeing to them in every way. I didn't always get the kids to set the table or help out with dinner, but I tried and sometimes they did. I made sure they washed their hands and came to the table. And when we were at the table, I made sure she was thanked and appreciated for the food by me and by the children.

I did this one or more times a day, every day.

Now, it's really easy to have food cooking on the stove, and D3 has had an 'accident' in her pants, or S6 has done, well... put ADHD, sibling resentment, anger over the family situation and see what you come up with.

I never said it wasn't difficult to do this all alone, and I never wanted it, either. But I'm going to be as good at it as I can be.

I'm just expressing my frustration here. Now, how am I going to use this to understand her? I'm still really confused about why she made the comment. My best idea is to just ask her why she said it.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2227548 - 03/04/12 11:18 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Sorry, this gets long and bloggy. But I may be doing something right and I want to write it down for consideration at a later time.

I feel pretty good about today. What can happen on a Sunday is I meet my wife at church, she is unable to look near me without scowling, but we stay with the kids to socialize with the other families and church members until about noon. Finally, upset that I exist, my wife leaves with the kids only further annoyed by the fact that I'm helping her get them back to and into her car.

Another thing that can happen is that we have a good time at church, W invites me over for lunch, we hang out, then she invites me to stay for dinner, then we share in putting kids to bed, and then I finally go back to my one-room apartment.

To anyone confused about my status as an atheist, it is a UU church, and they take all kinds. It's a nice place.

So today was in the middle of the two extremes, but it felt really good.

W let me take D3 out after church today. At the hardware store, I bought her a tiny tape measure and little wrench and got some stuff I needed to fix things around the house. We ate lunch out. When we got home for D3 naptime, W offered to let me "do" naptime. I would normally jump at that, but I asked her to do it so I could fix some things while W was upstairs. (I was trying to avoid being in the same place at the same time with her, so she didn't mind my being at the house.) W was taking a while, I fixed what I came to fix, but S6 was playing by himself on the computer. I asked if he'd like me to read to him for a while, so we did that until W finally came downstairs. I would have left right after I finished the chapter, but D3 was calling for mommy and W was having stomach distress and stuck in the bathroom.

So I went upstairs and got D3 to go to sleep. When W was finally out of the bathroom, I left the house. I went to the neighborhood coffee shop to get some work done on the computer. I had no further expectations, but W texted me that D3 left her stuffed animal in my car and asked if I'd drop it off before bedtime. When I got there, W offered me leftovers for dinner (after I looked longingly at the grilled cheese sandwiches she had just thrown in the garbage!!!). W was giving D3 a bath, and S6 was on the computer again, so I figured this time I'd have him read to me while we waited for Mom to finish up with his sister. I tried to read my wife carefully and not be there if she wanted me away. I ended up helping S6 get bathed and ready for bed before W took both kids upstairs for bed time.

Once again, I found my wife away from me, so I figured no harm could come from me spending a little more time at the house while she was busy with the kids. So I did the dishes, did some laundry, and started cleaning up the place. I put my coat on and got ready to go but W invited me to clean up the house a little more. So I did. I kept any talk light, but eventually she brought up the idea that I hadn't appreciated what she had been doing all these years making dinner.

I was still baffled by her meaning, though I came to realize that what she meant was that I appreciated in the sense that I always thanked her, but I didn't appreciate in the sense that I didn't comprehend what the effort entailed. She has the perception that I think I can do this without practice and effort and I don't understand why she thinks I think that. But I let it rest.

I got ready to go again, and she gave me the most baffling invitation of all. She asked me to help her do sit ups to help her out with a challenge she was assigned at her gym this week. So I took off my coat and shoes, got down on the floor, locked legs with her, and we did 75 sit-ups together. I felt like a teenager, excited for any physical contact with the girl I am interested in.

It's been 7 months now (OMG, WHAT?) since I've gotten sweaty with my wife. This was welcome.

Finally, I did leave the house, taking the garbage with me as I went (for the third time that day). How can we be making that much garbage?

I think my recent interest in cooking has done a lot to increase her interest in me. I'm most certainly keeping that up. If the stomach is the way to that girl's heart, I'm pleased to make that happen.

I also think my decision to avoid contacting her by text or email has helped and I'm going to keep that up. I was tempted to make email contact today, but I resisted.

I'm enjoying the good moments, and I'm preparing to increase my efforts in the areas that seem to be working. I'm trying to keep my expectations low, and preparing to remain cool and detached for the obligatory post-good-time nastiness that is likely to come this week.

Thanks for listening. smile
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2227555 - 03/04/12 11:30 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Good stuff AT! Glad you're able to see what is working and can continue the pattern.

I admit I can't quite picture the "locked legs" sit up position but hey, glad it was fun!
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2227564 - 03/05/12 12:17 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: ces67
I admit I can't quite picture the "locked legs" sit up position but hey, glad it was fun!


More like locked ankles. When you do sit-ups, your legs want to lift up off the floor. One way to address this is to have someone hold your feet down. Another is to lock your ankles together and do sit-ups simultaneously.

I've been doing the P90-X Ab Ripper routine for months and have little trouble doing any kind of sit-up. Ab Ripper takes less that 15 minutes to do, and if you do it every other day, you will be amazed at the results. Rock-hard ripped abs. It's amazing.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2227610 - 03/05/12 08:25 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
I've done that one a few times with my brother-in-law. Tried the "insanity" video as well. Definitely a good workout!

I'll have to put "locked leg sit ups" as one of my little goals for progress!
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2228208 - 03/06/12 04:35 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I see W again today. I'm making dinner again today. I went to the house this morning and pre-prepared everything before work, so when I get home it all goes on the stove. If W doesn't stay for dinner, she'll be missing out.

W goes kick boxing Tuesday nights, so that gives me a little more time to work on the house.

Without saying a word to her, without emails, or text, there is a lot I can be doing to fill up the love bank, so I'm going to keep on that.

I've gone a full week without sending her a single email now. I aim to make it a month. I sent her one or two texts in that time, having no emotional content. I'm feeling good about the good this is doing for both of us.

How many times in the last week I didn't have to spend half an hour staring at my email or text, trying to figure out what not to say or what to add to make an impact! So unnecessary.


Last week, Tuesday, W talked to one of the DB coaches with the expectation that we'd both talk to her later. Later that day, W told me "I don't think I'll be doing that." I was very disappointed at the time she told me this, but almost immediately things have been better between us.

I've been thinking about scheduling a private conference with the DB coach, but with things going well, I think I might wait another week or two and see if W wants to try again.

Then again, maybe I should just talk to Laurie right away and not loose any time on whatever advice she might have.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2228359 - 03/06/12 10:37 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Visit at the house went well. Dinner was late despite a lot of effort in preparation today because I hadn't anticipated how *long* brown rice took to cook. A long time. I'm learning.

W had a migrane but was actually really nice. When she came home from kickboxing, I made sure I was ready to leave the house and everything was straight and in order. I think it makes her more comfortable to talk if she knows I really could leave at any moment. Early on, I noticed she started to be unable to look directly at me and I realized I was probably fixed on her most of the time, so I started looking everywhere but her face for a while and that got better as well.

I feel like I'm starting to get a handle on things.

And then, after I left the house, I called her about something I forgot - bank account is empty until payday - Friday. I wanted to remind her not to spend any money. And we started talking about money a little bit and it was a mistake. She started to get upset and had to get off the phone.

So, I'm going to be a lot more cautious about getting into money talks.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2228453 - 03/07/12 08:42 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Hey AT, glad you feel some positives from what's going on.

I'm not much of a cook, I can do some basics but getting it all ready at the same time is a skill that I've yet to master!

Learn as you go. You seem to be observant and able to adjust to what you see and from what I can tell, that's a big part of the 180s.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2228697 - 03/07/12 06:52 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
danielf Offline
Member

Registered: 03/05/12
Posts: 128
Thank you very much for sharing your story here. I'm pretty new, and get confidence from seeing how things work.
After reading, I just wanted to ask about your social life. That might be an important part of GAL and 180. Don't want to assume you don't, but going out with friends, finding a guy you can really share what is going on in your life with, might be very valuable to you.
_________________________
Me:33, W:32
D:11, S:10, S8
M:12

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#2228938 - 03/08/12 02:57 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: danielf]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Welcome to the board, danielf. This "thing" going on with my wife and family has been the most awful experience in my life. Reading other people's stories makes me realize how much worse it could be. There are things that are going well for me.

My social life is broken. There really aren't people who are physically close and emotionally close to me. The four people who I have been closest to in my life are inaccessible to me now. My wife is hard to reach. frown I have a friend 3000 miles away that I have grown increasingly distant from over the last 16 years. My next closest friend is in Beijing, and the friend I have relied on the most has done something terrible.

I don't know what my closest friend did exactly, but I gather that it was sexual in some way, involved my 15-year-old daughter, and triggered my wife into writing a statement into our separation agreement that says my kids can not see him at all ever. My daughter and wife refuse to tell me exactly what happened, so I just don't talk to him any more.

I talk to my brother and sister on the phone.

I have a friend that has given me a lot of support that I see once or twice a week, but she is not the sort of person I can open up to the way I could to the friends that I have lost.

I have been making an effort to talk to more people.

I'm really a people person. I like to be alone a lot of the time. But I do need to replace these relationships that I've lost. It's hard to see how that is going to happen, though.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2228950 - 03/08/12 03:31 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
AT - A few friends on this board recommended Al Anon as a support group.

Labug described it as "a fellowship for friends and family of problem drinkers, and you get to define problem."

My W isn't an alcoholic (though she was raised by 2) but the 2 meetings I've been to are helpful because the focus is on you and how can better handle what you can control and recognizing what you can. They have meetings all over the country.

May be worth a try to connect with people who are struggling as well. Also, you sound pretty athletic. Any sports leagues you could get into just for the fun of it?

We all need a good support system around us and it seems it rarely forms by chance.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2228953 - 03/08/12 03:34 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
"One day is a long time for me to go without seeing you!"

I called my wife at work today. D15 made some sort of plan to study at an ex-boyfriend's house, so I called to confirm. I'm going to pick her up after work and bring her to the house.

I want to see my youngest two kids more often. Hmm. I actually do see them 4 days a week - Tuesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. But what I'm looking for is more quality time - one on one time with just one of them. W actually gets to see the kids as long as I do Tuesday and Friday, and when she leaves for most of Saturday, that is her choice. She doesn't know what it is like to go three days between seeing the kids.

The kids don't like it and neither do I. But she needs "space".

I'm not trying to get at W in any way. I just want to see my kid.


Anyway, as long as we're getting along, it seems like a reasonable request.


When I called W today to ask about D15's plans, she immediately seemed annoyed to be hearing from me. Maybe I should have taken that as a sign and discontinued the conversation. I wanted to ask about taking D6 to the library, though, so I did that.

She said, "I don't know what we're doing." I said, OK, just let me know if I can pick him up or not later. The she gave me a flat-out "No". I said, "OK. That's fine. I would like to be able to take them out sometimes. Two days is a long time for the kids to go without seeing their dad."

I could sense this vibe from her that I think comes from being reminded that separation and divorce are hurting people - that she is hurting people by going down this path. I wasn't trying to tug at any heartstrings or shame her in any way... but something went wrong.

"One day is a long time for me to go without seeing you."

I think I said something like "This sounds like it's a problem for you and that means it's important." or something. She said something back and hung up. I'm not great at remembering conversation details. I'm actually really bad at it. I can remember feedback from clients and action items, but when there is conflict involved, I don't remember the back and forth.

This is exactly the sort of situation where I'd send her a well-thought-out email so that she could understand my side of the story. She would ignore the email, then two weeks later call me up and ask if I want to take one of the kids out for the evening.

I've sworn off email this month, so I might just have to let this go.

But I'm going to see if we can talk about it again. Specifically this: For her to make a statement like that, clearly she is not getting the distance she needs from this separation. I want to figure out if there is anything we should change about our separation so that she feels she is getting the space she wants and we don't have to escalate in some way. I want to do that without causing more disruption for the kids or any more distance between children and parents than is needed.

I want to see if we can talk about some of those ideas, and see if she is willing to discuss it with Laurie (DB coach) some time next week. I can mention that Laurie suggested I start sending fewer emails, and that I took that suggestion to heart and stopped sending them altogether.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2228959 - 03/08/12 04:15 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Actually, I should probably lead with apologizing for putting pressure on her with the "two days" statement.

Hypothetical future conversation:
Quote:
Can we talk for a minute? The other day, our phone call didn't go well. I think I may have been putting some pressure on you with what I said about it being a long time for the kids. I didn't mean it, but it was there. I've been working on not putting pressure on you, and I'm sorry for slipping up.

You commented that one day is a long time to go without seeing me. Maybe you were reacting to what I had just said, but it sounds like you're not getting enough space. You sounded upset from the moment you picked up the phone that day.

If I push you further away during this separation, I'll consider that a tragic failure. That is why I value talking to Laurie. When I last talked to Laurie, she suggested I cut down on my emails to you. I took that to heart and stopped them altogether. I also cut way down on texts didn't send any where I might be tempted to say something 'persuasive'.

The first time you called me 'manipulative', I was completely befuddled that you would say that. I've since realized that a lot of what I say comes out in an attempt to be persuasive. I'm working to change that.

I think there may be other things I can change to make you feel more comfortable in your space, and that we can even do it in ways where I can have some more one on one time with the kids. I would like it if we could both talk to Laurie to explore what kinds of ideas she has for us.


That is probably too many words.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2228967 - 03/08/12 04:26 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm pretty sure Al Anon isn't for me

Originally Posted By: ces67

May be worth a try to connect with people who are struggling as well. Also, you sound pretty athletic. Any sports leagues you could get into just for the fun of it?

We all need a good support system around us and it seems it rarely forms by chance.


I don't have time for sports. When it's warmer and dryer, I play tennis when I can. I miss having a gym membership so I could play racquetball. But I'm not about to join a league. I have time for my job, time for my kids and family, and that is about it.

I have friends over a few times during the week to play board games and hang out.

I try to keep time in my life for a hobby project. Right now, I'm working on a facebook game for fun and to see if I can get it to produce any money. Maybe I'll post an ad in craigslist and see if anyone wants to help out in some way.

That's actually a pretty good idea. I'm going to do that.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2229017 - 03/08/12 09:56 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I took D15 out for late dinner tonight. She had a lot of emotions to deal with. She wants a home and a family, but everything is all broken up. Her best friend abandoned her (D15 struggles with depression. Really struggles. Best friend needed a break.) One of her former best friends is trading sex for drugs and money and is now trying to end her possible pregnancy through more drug use. I sat with her while she called the friend's father to ask him to help her.

Somewhere in the middle of this, she was finally ready to tell me what happened between her and my former best friend, DeadToMe. D15 was not able to live at home for a while. DeadToMe was kind enough to offer her a room and open up his home to her. D15 was pulling herself together and succeeding at life and at school for the first time in a long time. I think it was really helping D15 to be living someplace where two parents had a strong bond and a warm home...

Well, after 3 months there, something happened and nobody could tell me what, but D15 wouldn't go there any more. D15 kept telling me things like, "Nothing happened". Well, what might have happened, D?

I told DeadToMe that something was really wrong and I needed him to own up to whatever it was. He gave me a partial-truth story that really didn't satisfy me. We haven't talked in over a month.

It turns out that DeadToMe did a number of things that went way over the line. I trusted him with my 15 year old daughter, and it was a mistake. Nothing "happened" but he did suggest that if he had an affair with her (d15!), it would ruin his family, but would probably be worth it. UGH>!!#$$@#%@#$^#$TE

I am so angry. I should not have driven home. I can't see straight and I'm lucky I didn't damage anything.


DeadToMe really was my closest friend. I may have some words to share with him, but I hope I never have to see him again.

I am at a loss.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2229020 - 03/08/12 10:10 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
Ohhh AT, that's terrible for a father to hear. You are right to distance yourself from this freak.

I think you need answers. She's still a young girl.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

Top
#2229027 - 03/08/12 10:42 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
What is really messed up is how she, D15, was trying to protect me in this. She knows that I do not have a lot of friends and that losing my wife is hard. She has avoided telling me this over the last few months so that I wouldn't stop talking to him and lose the friend.

Knowing that there was something there that nobody could talk about was enough reason not to talk. I wish she hadn't tried to protect me by protecting this friendship She's still afraid to talk openly with her therapist about this because although nothing "happened", her therapist might have to report it and that would cause trouble for Dead's family. D15 doesn't want to break up a family.

I need to sleep this off. I feel like my frontal lobe is on fire.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2229136 - 03/09/12 10:07 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
W called to be emotionally supportive, I think, after my conversation with D15 about what happened with my old friend, DeadToMe. I can't remember the last time she has done anything emotionally supportive. I didn't expect it and I wasn't quite sure what to do.

It got strained, though. I'm saying, "I never would have sent her over there if I thought he was capable of this." She said we should have known better.

About 13-14 years ago, W, my two best friends DeadToMe and MrBeijing, and I were living in the same house. W was dating my friend who is now in Beijing who was studying Chinese in college at the time. MrBeijing was also a nice guy and there was a lot of dysfunctional going on in his relationship with W. They lasted 6 months. At the time, it seemed half of that time was waiting for it to end. I was in love with her almost immediately. Things were strained in the house.

W was kind of in love with being at the house with us even though she didn't want to be with MrBeijing at that point. It wouldn't have been appropriate for me to start dating her at that point, since we all knew I was in love with her and there had to be some sort of... I don't know... waiting period before I could try dating her without ruining my friendships.

What were we all thinking? We were kids and this was all a bad plan. W spent a couple of nights sleeping in the same bed with DeadToMe. They didn't have a love connection. In fact, DtM didn't have a strong connection with W at all, so this was somehow the most platonic option.

Well, they fooled around, so to speak, but no sex. Until one night, W fell asleep during some fooling around and woke up to DtM initiating sex with her, which she did not want. There was no birth control in use, W asked him to stop, but apparently he was not quick to comply. He did not have permission to begin intercourse. This was without consent.

W left. The following evening, DtM confessed what happened to MrB and I, with lots of sobbing and self-loathing. DtM and MrB lived together for 2 years after that and went from not talking to slowly rebuilding their friendship. I left the house. I couldn't talk to MrB because I chose W over DtM after the event. I couldn't talk to DtM because he couldn't find the inner strength and character to face W, apologize, and try to make things right. He was miserable and torturing himself emotionally, but he could have made things so much better if he would have manned up and showed W some empathy and compassion.

W got rape counseling, morning after pill, dropped out of her doctorate program, was depressed and sick for months. I tried to take care of her without stepping over boundaries. 6 months later, we were pretty sure we were dating. 5 years after that, we were getting married.

I adopted an attitude that there is a continuum of degrees of evil when it comes to rape. I believed that what DtM did was on the least evil end of that spectrum and that he was not irredeemable. I knew from experience that W will easily fall asleep at times when intercourse seems like the next logical step and it is actually hard to tell that she's fallen asleep. However, my friend had initiated unprotected sex with an unconscious woman.

I didn't talk to my former friends for about 8 years, but was unable to replace those relationships. MrB approached me, and slowly we started to talk more and more frequently. 11 years after the incident, W started to be accepting of the idea that I would have a friendship with DtM and invited him and his family over for a dinner party. It seemed like wounds were healing, and I was grateful.

W hid from me how much this upset her. I'm not even sure I believe this upset her that much until she found out about what happened between DtM and D15. I was mistaken in allowing my relationship with DtM to get closer without him really addressing what happened with W years ago. I shouldn't have gone ahead with the risk of resentment being there.

I didn't think that DtM was irredeemable. Sexually inappropriate behavior was not a pattern for him, or so I believed. W was pleased that D15 was in a safe place with DtM's family for the 3 months that D15 lived there. DtM would come over to my house after night school and play card games with W and I some times or just hang out and talk. I felt that things were normal.

But after D15 confided in W what happened with DtM, W began to feel guilty for letting D15 into that situation and that she should have known better.

Anyway, with that back-story, you can see how giving me emotional support over this situation was complicated for W.

She said, "You never really believed me, did you?". The conversation was strained. I was already confused and dazed. I don't think I handled it all the best. Eventually, she gave me a dry, resentful, "good night". I said, "good night" and hung up before she could get a chance. The temptation was there to hang on the line and struggle for the words to set things right.

I have no idea what to say to her. I'm thinking about inviting her to a counseling session to hint at that process. I can't force that conversation on her and she probably doesn't want to have it.

In the meantime, I do mean to have the conversation about pressure, space, and an appointment with a db coach tonight if she seems receptive. Any comments on that conversation are appreciated. Or comments on anything, obviously. If there is a text limit on this forum, I've probably hit it...
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

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#2229139 - 03/09/12 10:14 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
Wow, there's a sh!tload of stuff to work through.

Quote:
W hid from me how much this upset her. I'm not even sure I believe this upset her that much until she found out about what happened between DtM and D15.


My guess would be it was there, she repressed it because of you. This brought it all back.

Sometimes we need a slap upside the head more than once for things to finally make sense.

Do you think your D is not talking because she doesn't want to ruin your friendship with the predator or because she thinks people won't believe her?
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

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#2229155 - 03/09/12 11:08 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
D said she was afraid to tell me because I might not care or because I might do something destructive to DtM's family. Or face.

D15 has absolutely no reason to lie or exaggerate. If anything, she is playing it down.

Predator. UGH. ;lasdf;ljj22#%#$534 Why is that word in my life? Why did I trust this person? That's what he is. When we were in highschool, I used to hate the way he would lead girls on and treat them like crap, like toys, or to make him feel powerful. Was he a predator even then?

Yes, W repressed her feelings because of me. She said the resentment led her to feeling she wanted to be away from me.

D15 thinks families should stay together and she sees so much pain come from failed families. What is wrong with all of us? I used to be offended by some of the notions of the "Promise Keeper" types, but we really need more organizations advocating and educating to keep marriages strong. As a society, I'd like to see us talking more about preventing divorce than preventing gay marriage.

I told D that if DtM is that sick, he has decades of his life to prey on someone else and it's not her job to save his marriage.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

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#2229156 - 03/09/12 11:18 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
I told D that if DtM is that sick, he has decades of his life to prey on someone else and it's not her job to save his marriage.


AT - This is a key point. Even if you all can put this behind you, does this leave open the opportunity for someone else to be hurt?

I had a situation at work one time where I was presented with evidence of a guy at work being FAR LESS than professional (and we'll just leave it at that). After conducting a few interviews I had found out that several ladies had been impacted by his actions. No one spoke up. Each one said that they addressed it and it never happened to them again. No one thought about it happening to others and others being impacted.

The only time I really enjoyed firing someone....

You all have to make the best decision for you but something to think about.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

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#2229157 - 03/09/12 11:18 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
There's a lot more stuff going on than can be handle by an online message board.

Are you all in family counseling?

Support your W and D, forget that piece of crap you called a friend. This is a defining moment in your life as a father and a husband.
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

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#2229234 - 03/09/12 03:19 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
There is counseling. D15 has a counselor. D15 and I share C#2 to work on our issues (she was really rejecting me as a parent for a while.), C#2 also sees S6 at times, I have C#3 for myself, though I bring W in sometimes. C#4 was our marriage counselor, but now W sees her on her own as an IC. D15 and I also both have psychiatrists.

W is seeing C#3 this evening after I bring D15 home from C#1. I wish I could say something to W to express how I wish I had supported her better. Or that I would do it differently now. It feels like a can of worms. Emotional worms. I don't know what I can say to her.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

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#2229242 - 03/09/12 03:52 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
Rick1963 Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 2516
Loc: Piney Land
Hi Always. In most states a C is mandated to report on just suspicion of abuse to their state child welfare agency. Has this happened? If he did something inappropriate to your D, he will do it to others. I know it is not a comfortable thing to do but something to discuss in C. The way I see it is that if he did not care about the well being of a 15 year old child you should not feel bad to inform the authorities. He needs to feel the consequences. Very sorry about this.
_________________________
M 51
W 50
D 17
Separated 6/22/11 moved out 11/12
Together 26 yrs
Married 16
W Filed for D 7/21/11
Served 9/6/11
D final 8/28/12

“Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.”

John Wooden






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#2229314 - 03/09/12 09:03 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: Rick1963]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I agree with you Rick. I feel that D should talk to her therapist about this and she hasn't up until now because she has been afraid of the consequences to Dead's son and wife and step-kids.

This is so frustrating. I can't believe how close I was to this person and I didn't see this. Honestly, I was a little worried about D15 coming on to him and making things hard for everyone. I didn't see this.

So, yes, if D tells her C, C will have to report and an investigation will start and Dead and his wife will be interviewed, as will D15. He didn't do anything illegal, so he won't see jail time or anything like that. That is why my W says she hasn't pushed for anything - because nothing will happen except for disrupting his home.

I'm hoping to have some conversations with W so she can convince me that doing nothing is the right thing. Really, it's up to D15. She needs to be able to talk about this with her C, though. She should not be bottling this up.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

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#2229320 - 03/09/12 09:24 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
Rick1963 Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/11
Posts: 2516
Loc: Piney Land
Don't blame yourself research shows that this kind of crime is mostly committed by those close to us ie family clergy friends. I would not wait for D to say something. If I were you I would tell your own C. Ask him if he is going to report it. I'm sorry this is very hard but u will be glad you did later on. Tell the C that this is mandatory and he could lose his license if he does not, according to your state laws. Many c don't report because they are afraid too. So don't give in.

Leave D alone. Don't force her to talk about it. If your W minimizes it or thinks nothing of it leave it alone it is normal. Think of it this way. She is her mom and she is thinking that she failed to protect her. She probably feels like he'll.
_________________________
M 51
W 50
D 17
Separated 6/22/11 moved out 11/12
Together 26 yrs
Married 16
W Filed for D 7/21/11
Served 9/6/11
D final 8/28/12

“Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.”

John Wooden






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#2229707 - 03/11/12 11:50 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: Rick1963]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I did end up having that conversation with W Saturday and suggested that we talk to Laurie together to figure out what we can be doing differently to make her more comfortable. She said she still doesn't want to, and I didn't press.

Somehow, she ended up telling me that she didn't think there was anything that could be done, yadda yadda. I think if she's in a place where she doesn't feel she's getting enough space with our current arrangement, but she's unwilling to talk to someone to see how we can improve it... that she's afraid of something? Afraid she'll have to do something she doesn't want, or accept responsibility she doesn't want, or something? Fear that maybe if I know how to make her feel better, it might be harder to resist me? Fear that she'd have to tell me she has other plans for her future and doesn't want to be distracted by any potential improvement in our relationship.

I don't know. It means something. And I don't want to mind-read. W went to bed before I left the house on Saturday because I was hanging out late with D15. After D15 went to bed, I was sitting alone in my living room and finding it really hard to leave. I sat there for about an hour and a half. I want my home back.

I ended up writing W a letter. I've successfully avoided sending any email for two weeks and kept contact low in general, and kept things cool in face-to-face talk. I have a sense that writing her a letter is not what I'm supposed to be doing, because I'm past LRT time. She filed months ago, but has agreed to put things on hold while we try this separation out.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2229715 - 03/12/12 12:14 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
This is the letter I wrote to her Saturday night. Should I have not said any of this? Do I need to stop trying to communicate?

Quote:
It is so hard to leave. Every time. I don't think you can appreciate.

I know it feels like... I guess I don't know. It's not right for you. It's not time for your to believe.

I believe. I do. I feel that we will one day be able to do this. I have to try. I can find strong enough reasons to do this work.

I admit I don't understand why you're not able, at least not yet. But I accept it.

But still, I hope and await some kind of help.

I hope that some day you will see that allowing someone like Laurie facilitate some conversations is a way for you to get exactly what you need.

I don't know why you seem to be afraid.

When you're ready, I just want to make our lives better, whatever the outcome.

I want to know what to do next. Father. Husband. Friend. I believe in these things. I believe in a future.

Honestly, I know I've caused you pain. I understand if you don't want to risk eroding the walls and distance between us.

I understand that this is about you and how you feel and what you believe is best for you.


I'm going to call to schedule an appointment with the DB coach tomorrow. I have two months left on our temporary cease fire, and I need to make them count.

And... I need her to say to me at some point in those two months that she is willing to start seeing someone to help us resolve conflicts and ease tensions. I want to know that if I'm not coming home, there is a good reason for it. Some progress is being made.

After two months, I can probably give us more time and put off the divorce by staying put. Maybe. Coming home will probably force her hand to get the divorce rolling again.

I want my life back.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2229900 - 03/12/12 04:03 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Sometimes my mind races in circles, "If only I knew what to do about my M?!?!?!"

On good days, this just doesn't happen. It's anxiety and panic over something I can not control. Realizing my former best friend intended to molest my daughter (and did in some ways) has really sent me into a spiral.

Sunday, I really just wanted to spend the day in bed. But, I get to see my kids at church and sometimes afterward, so I pulled myself together and had a great day with my son.

But I'm still reeling over this revelation. My head hurts a lot.

So, it's not a change in my M that is driving my thoughts, but the wheel doesn't stop spinning and it keeps trying to find a way out. I'm miserable. I want to be home. I want my friend and partner back. I want to be with my kids. What is the shortcut? How do I end this now? Do I give up? Should I start planning for D? Do I buckle down and assume I'll be at this for a year or more?

I shouldn't be letting what my W said get to me. She is going to say there is no way for us to ever repair our M until she is willing to admit out loud that there is. She doesn't trust what she sees in me, but she is making room in our lives to see if she can feel differently. Eventually. I have to be thankful for that.

And forget about it. Focus on what I can control.

And when I get control of myself, it's obvious that there is plenty I can be doing in the GAL/180 department that would make a difference. When I ask myself, "What do I really need to change?", am I really asking myself what is the easiest thing I can change to make a difference? What is the least effort I can put up and still succeed? I have to admit that I only have so much to give. I can't do everything.

And yet, I need to find the strength and the energy to do more. I can't wait for W to say "I need to see X". I just have to be the best me I can be and not get caught up in the soul-sucking pain of this separation/possible(probable?)divorce.

Here is what I have going pretty successfully on in the GAL/180 department:
- Daily meditation to get past my anxiety and distractability, and be a happier, more lively, more productive person for the rest of my life.
- Always trying hard to listen with an open mind and validate and really be present without defensiveness.
- Working out most days and keeping an eye on my weight. (this is for me, not my W. I'm already thinner than my wife would like, I think.)
- Having the energy and drive to keep the house in good shape (W and I both used to fail at this. We both put a lot more effort into it after the separation.)

But I know I need to do some other stuff. I want to:
- Start being early for things instead of being late.
- Finally do all those things on my todo list that I let slide (pay a fine, go to the DMV, buy a part, fix something, call someone about that thing, etc, etc)

Probably more. I have to think about this later. I'm going to go meditate.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230226 - 03/13/12 02:25 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm distracted waiting for my call with DB coach Laurie today.

I think I'm realizing that I've signed myself up for months or years of limbo because I believe that fixing the marriage is by far what is best for the kids. W still wants to be a good mom, but doesn't see repairing her marriage as part of that.

Two months from now, my trial separation is up and I'm free to move back into the house. I just need one simple thing from my wife - I need her to agree to see someone with me about our MR. If she can't see the value of that in all this time, I don't know what to say.

I think I can go another two weeks without saying anything, but after that I'm going to ask her to talk to Laurie or someone else with me.

Or, am I not allowed to do that? Am I not allowed to talk to my W about counseling?

I'm just so tired of her "not fixable" attitude. Most of the problems I find around the house are also not fixable - unless I open my toolbox.

I don't need to say this now, but I feel like in the next two weeks, when the time is right, I have to say some version of "The most important gift we can give our kids is a strong home with a strong marriage. I can feel that we've tried our best to do that if we can make one more attempt to understand our problems with a couple's conselor."
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230301 - 03/13/12 05:37 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
labug Offline
Member

Registered: 11/24/11
Posts: 8553
Loc: Sonoran Desert
How'd your talk with Laurie go?
_________________________
Me 57/H 58
M35 S24 S21
Bomb 3/11 Sep 3/11
Piecing 9/13 12/13 Reconciling

"We can make ourselves miserable, or we can make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same"~Carlos Castenada

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#2230441 - 03/14/12 10:04 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: labug]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Talks with DB coaches are always great. They make you feel more at ease and less out of control. They give you hope that you are doing the right thing and validate and affirm your choice to try to save your marriage against the odds. And they make you feel more sympathetic toward your spouse and more capable of using a gentle patient approach.

Laurie said that when she talked to my wife, W echoed a lot of what I said and there were no surprises. W is really concerned with separating the finances. Laurie said another topic W wanted to talk about was helping me accept what is coming. Obviously not what I wanted to hear. And Laurie said that toward the end, W got anxious and said she felt pressured about getting on the phone with both Laurie and me. Laurie thought it best to take the pressure off and cancel the call.

Laurie and I talked about what is going on now. I agreed that there was more I could do to separate finances, and I would work on that. We talked a lot about W's need for more space. She suggested I ask "If you were getting enough space, what would our schedule look like over the next two weeks?". We talked about the possibility that maybe I would try not to see her at all for that period. I was also going to say something along the lines of, "I'm worried that I can be forgetful. Is there something you have asked for that you feel that I'm not giving you or not remembering?" also "Are there ways you are feeling pressured that I can take away?" Laurie also said to figure out when W feels it's safe to talk to me.

The plan was not to hit her with this all at once, and to listen, validate, not be defensive. Also, not to push back at all when she tells me what she needs.

Then late last night when she came home a little late from kickboxing, I was ironing my shirts. She said she has to tell me something and that I should probably put the heavy object down first...
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230448 - 03/14/12 10:33 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
W had her taxes done. 1) It's going to cost us more money to file separately. 2) She did it because I owe quarterly taxes from last year and she is trying to separate herself from that debt.

We owe taxes because I was underemployed and didn't have enough to make ends meet. I told her, "Where do you think that debt comes from? We didn't have enough. I gave you all the money I had." This made her *really* mad. "You gave *me* all your money!?!?! <huff><huff>"

The conversation lasted for probably an hour, and was 90% calm. She said that in order for there to be some hope of reconciliation, she needed us to have separate houses. The current arrangement when she sees me several times a week isn't going to work. I reminded her that I've been asking her for weeks how we need to adjust our arrangement so that it works for her. She said, "I told you long ago. I need a separation. You're never going to be able to do it." She brought up the spying. I brought up the OM, how she was behaving suspiciously. I said I wished that had never happened. I cried just a little bit when I told her how much it hurt to read what she and OM were saying to each other.

That did not go well. I took an ambien so I could get to sleep.

W says the separation she needs is where we have two houses and I take the kids to my house when I have them and she doesn't see me at church, or possibly ever. W and I can't really afford two houses and an extra set of stuff for the kids.

I want to tell her that I can give her a separation, but I have to be sure there is not something I can do that is better for the kids. I believe she has sabotaged efforts to make this arrangement work by refusing to talk about what she needs. (I can't believe how selfish she is all the time. I wish I never married her. I wish she would just disappear and leave me with the kids and not ever talk to me again until she is able to think of other people. I am so frustrated!) I want to point out how expensive and painful this will be, and that I have a responsibility to my kids to try to find a better way if it is possible.

I want her to come to 4 counseling sessions with me over the next month to explore whether there may be an alternative to getting the kids two sets of bedrooms and houses to live in and all that other stuff. That crosses a line for me, and all this "Kids are resilient" crap makes me want to punch people in the face.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230625 - 03/14/12 05:35 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm considering whether it makes sense for me to assume all debt.

I really blamed her for my debilitating depression after she dropped the bomb and considered it shared debt. But that debt is also a pretty close accounting of how far I was failing to pay my share. Immediately when she dropped the bomb in July, she was talking about separation to protect herself financially.

She was worried that I was going to cause us a new bankruptcy.

I'm pretty sure an attorney will tell me that the debt is shared marital responsibility. And I'm pretty sure that if she leaves me with the house, even with zero child support, it is going to be a real challenge for me to pay off that debt on my own.

Maybe the "right" thing for me to do is to own that debt going forward no matter what happens. Maybe if I agree to do so, W won't be pushing so hard to get away.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

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#2230717 - 03/14/12 11:26 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I wrote W a letter today. My goal was to express why I feel how I do about marriage and family without hitting W with guilt and shame, and why I feel like I have to do whatever it takes to protect our family. And if that is backing off and giving space, then that is fine, but getting two separate households is too far for me. If she'll agree to see a MC with me 4 times so we can see if we can improve our situation enough that she doesn't think separate homes are the *only* way out, I'll feel that I've done all I can and go with her.

I didn't send the letter. I think I need to back off right now, not press.

Ambien is finally kicking in. I guess I'm done posting for the day.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230796 - 03/15/12 09:26 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
So... any ideas on how to ask her to not move out without pursuing her?
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230798 - 03/15/12 09:29 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
sayitaintso Offline
Member

Registered: 11/04/11
Posts: 951
AT- Tough times for sure. My w moved out 8 months ago, 3 kids, its hard!

Please share any important letters or emails you are planning on sending her here so you can get some input from us to see if it is going to help you towards your goals.

So is the letter an ultimatum? What are you prepared to do if she doesn't agree? Why do you feel the need to send it, don't you think she knows how you feel about the seperation already?

IMO your wife needs space and you need to give it to her to have a chance.

What are you doing to GAL? What are you doing for you?

Keep posting.

Best!!
_________________________
Me- 34 W-33
S15 S10 S6
Married- 11 Together- 18
Bomb- 6-2011
WAW moves out- 8-2011

"Nothing in the Universe can stop you from letting go and starting over at anytime"- Guy Finley

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#2230950 - 03/15/12 03:46 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: sayitaintso]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: sayitaintso
AT- Tough times for sure. My w moved out 8 months ago, 3 kids, its hard!


I'm really sorry. It kills me not to see my kids every day. D15 came to the realization this morning that I'm actually not pathetic at all. I'm not hung up on W, but bearing whatever pain she throws my way while doing whatever is in my power to protect my family. It was nice to hear her say that.

Originally Posted By: sayitaintso
So is the letter an ultimatum? What are you prepared to do if she doesn't agree? Why do you feel the need to send it, don't you think she knows how you feel about the seperation already?


The letter is not an ultimatum. It's more of an urging. I decided not to send it. I'll post it in my next post.

W hasn't moved out yet. My goal right now is to do whatever it takes to make W comfortable staying in the house while we allow DBing to happen, while giving her ample space and trying not to make her feel pressured or manipulated.

But I feel I have to make it clear:
1) I feel that moving into two houses will cause a significant trauma to the children. I feel it should be avoided if possible.
2) I do not feel that we have begun to tap my willingness to give you enough space to make something like our children's current living arrangement comfortable for you, W.
3) If you will meet me for four sessions over the next month or so with someone to mediate and help us communicate about what can make this arrangement work, and it does not produce results you can be comfortable with, I can concede that we did what we could to avoid this step and remove barriers to your moving out, W.


You're right, she knows how I feel, maybe? I've certainly said most of what can be said, but she still doesn't hear me over her anger and distortions. My words don't mean to her what they mean to me coming out, but she does some Voodoo WAW magic and they become something different.

I feel I need to say something because she is convinced that there is no way for us to heal in this arrangement. I want her to know that if she will give this an honest try (I can give her space, I just want the kids to be able to keep their home), I can accept the outcome if it doesn't work.

Originally Posted By: sayitaintso
IMO your wife needs space and you need to give it to her to have a chance.

What are you doing to GAL? What are you doing for you?

Keep posting.

Best!!


I have been working to increase space. I stopped sending her emails two weeks ago. I keep texts to a minimum. But I do see her Tuesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Honestly, I think things may have been getting better here and there, but coming home to have it out over the taxes had her spitting bile again.

The thing is, she doesn't tell me when things are not working. She just decides more divorce. It is so frustrating. After I moved home, ruined everything (She was thinking of R, but unwilling to say, "If you do this, I'll file D". She filed D. I was shocked.) I spent a month or two at home with her thinking things were getting better until about two weeks before our court date she became a nervous wreck and made it clear to me that she was going crazy being in the house with me.

I want her to meet with me and a counselor and ask/plan for something to take the pressure off and see what happens. I'm so tired of communication being so broken.

We have two major challenges that I can't easily 180 myself out of. One is that I spied on her when I became worried about the OM and whether she was planning to destroy me with lawyers. I invaded her privacy and she thinks about it all the time. She got new computers and does most of her OM correspondence on an iPad he gave her over 3G instead of wifi. The pain won't go away. If that event - my spying on her - were an arm, I'd probably cut it off and burn it. I can't make it disappear and I know that trust takes a long time to rebuild.

The other problem is the money. She tried to isolate herself from me financially back in July because she was afraid of me melting down and going bankrupt. Well, her talking separation or divorce sent me into a meltdown and put me 15k or so in debt. My hanging on and slowing down her process probably means we share that debt together and I can stick her with half of it in a D. But she's trying to divorce the guy who got into that mess - the one who couldn't focus on work or bill clients or keep his [censored] together.

That figure - the 15k - is the shortfall between what I produced last year, and what I needed to produce to keep our family fed and housed and not bankrupt. I blamed her for my depression and fixed on the idea that we would share the cost. I think to make this go away, I need to find a way to shoulder that debt on my own. And if we get D'ed anyway, that is a terrible plan because I won't be able to pay the bills and handle the debt. frown

If she stays in the house, we don't have to buy new furniture, and I keep renting a room for $115 a week instead of two separate expensive places to be, I can pay down the debt.


GAL? Mostly I work and I'm with the kids. I'm making a facebook game for fun. Learning to cook!!! that's been a good one. I'm planning on reaching out to see if some other people want to help me with my game so I'll have some more human interaction in my life.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230951 - 03/15/12 03:58 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
"IMO your wife needs space and you need to give it to her to have a chance."

Right on. And I want badly to give it to her. I just want to do it in a way that doesn't throw my kids' lives into chaos. It's not OK.

I can back waaaaaaaaaaay off. I would just like her to come talk to someone so we can find ways of doing that and stop acting like it's just not possible.

She's asking permission to go live her life in a very selfish way and I'm not giving it.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230952 - 03/15/12 04:08 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
This is the letter I ended up not sending:

Quote:
I'm feeling pretty raw right now. I try not to talk about my feelings or put pressure on you. I try, anyway. Right now I'm bursting at the seams. I try to distance myself emotionally, but still the Moon to my emotional tide is the hope that my children can grow up with an intact family. That hope comes and goes.

I wish that I could express my feelings about family and marriage without making you feel bad. I know you've made a very difficult choice. I know you don't want to hurt our kids. I know you don't want to hear this, but I don't think you accept the impact this will have on them. From what I can hear, you only accept the impossibility of saving our marriage. If you can't save the marriage, there is no use in torturing yourself over how we will be letting the kids down. I get that.

But I can't let it go. The thought haunts me constantly. I feel that if I can't give them this thing - a loving home, and a model of a healthy relationship - that I have failed them as a father in an unredeemable way. I can do my best, and I will, but this failure can not be erased. Step-dad and Step-mom don't fix it. And in the absence of a good model, the cylce usually passes down to the next generation.

I don't want this. But you do. You want a version of life that includes this. I have a hard time processing this. Obviously.

I want to be able to back off and just accept what you say, and give you what you ask for, without argument. It's not that easy. There is a lot that I can accept, but having two separate homes to bring our kids to is a line that is so hard for me to cross. When you say there is no other way, I take you at your word that that is how you feel.

That step will cause permanent damage to our children. S6 *needs* this to not happen. So yes, I try to find a way around.
W, I love you enough to let you go. I wish I could. I can not love anything in this world enough to let go of hope for our children.

I know you have tried, you are fed up, and you might just not have any left in you. I will follow you down that path when there is no other way. But I am asking you, on behalf of our future children, who are not yet here to speak to us, to take a peek with me down another path.

If you come with me for four sessions to meet with someone to find ways that we can keep chaos out of our children's lives that will allow you to feel comfortable in the house and feel that you are getting the space you need, I will feel that we really have done what we can to make this work. I feel a responsibilty to have tried that if at all possible. If it doesn't work and it really can't be done, then I will be convinced and we will build separate households.


I was angry (very angry) when I wrote it and I'm sure it's not my best work.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2230997 - 03/15/12 07:19 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm dropping D15's meds at the house this evening after the little ones are in bed. D15 will be asleep, too.

I'm thinking about asking W if she can talk for a few minutes. I want to tell her I understand how important separating the finances is to her now. I'm going to tell her that I'm going to put together a plan and try to take on the debt we have.

Maybe I'll leave it at that. I want to touch on the pain from the invasion of privacy and how it isn't going away and how I'm going to search hard to see what I can do about it.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2231023 - 03/15/12 09:53 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
We did talk and it went better than I could have believed 48 hours ago. We communicated better about difficult issues than I remember doing in a long time.

It seems like there is some hope for the idea that she might be willing to talk to someone with me about ways to make our current arrangement work with kids in their own beds for the time being and not rushing on to get two separate houses.

I told her no pressure and I'm not asking her now, but I will probably ask her in two weeks unless she decides she wants to go sooner.


She also said that I don't have to not send her email, but I told her I'm going to keep that up for a while.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2231038 - 03/15/12 10:28 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Glad it went better than expected. Hope the counseling ends up happening!
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2231218 - 03/16/12 02:08 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
A lot of people here talk about cutting themselves off from their WAS. Phone calls to VM. Ignore Texts unless they are about the kids.

The attitude I have is that if W wants to reach out to me, I'm there. I respond in kind. I've learned not to ask for anything or to expect anything or to need anything. OK. Well, most days. I've made lots of slip-ups, but less and less often. If she wants to share that she has had a good day, I say, "Good for you!"

Laurie, my DB coach has never advocated going dark, even though D has been filed. "Will this thing I am about to do or say bring my wife closer or push her away?" That is the mantra. The talks about not pushing, and giving her room to be drawn back toward me.

She never says, "Don't pick up the phone." She says be polite. Listen.

I see W at the house pretty regularly. She might decide to hide or leave. That is my base expectation. I don't get upset if she decides not to engage the family. That's not the stage she's at. However, I am pleased if she decides to stay for a meal or help with bedtime.

A lot of posters on this board - the hard-liners - cut themselves off from the WAS until they can get to piecing. It seems angry and defensive at times. Yes, you have to protect yourself from the emotional roller-coaster.

But if you are detached enough from your spouse's actions, do you need such a hard line?


That said, my sitch isn't going all that great. Ups and downs and lots of days that I feel good, but W did just tell me she wants more space and she doesn't know how to get it because we interact with the kids so much.

I'm going to not go to church this Sunday so I don't see her there. I don't want to do that every week, but I want to give her something right away.

I wish she had a flag she would put out to let me know back off or stand still. I'm better at reading than I used to be. I think one of the problems we have really is that she is comfortable being around me right up until the moment that old pain comes forward and I'm just Too Close.

I think I may be able to take away a big part of the money issue so that doesn't come up to bite me/us. One issue I don't know how to make better is that she caught me spying on her and has become paranoid ever since. She probably wouldn't be paranoid if she wasn't carrying on an EA, but I can't fix that.

I think I've mentioned the EA twice in four months, and both times the message was that I acknowledge it's existence, but I don't want to talk about it, so I'm not putting a lot of pressure there. I think.

I suppose she knows I still judge her for it even if I'm not talking about it.

I don't know if there is a way for me to show her that I realize I made a mistake spying on her. I can't take it back.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2231668 - 03/19/12 12:02 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Kids went to their Nana's house Saturday afternoon, so I missed out on one of my nights with the kids.

So, to give more space to W this weekend, I left the house when I was done with the kids and didn't come to church today, either. It was actually pretty liberating to have all that time on my hands. I had a pretty good GAL weekend.

I spent the weekend at my brother's house. It's only about a half hour from where I live, but that's far enough that it prevents us from spending a lot of time together. We spent a lot of time welding things onto and grinding things off of his dune-buggy-to-be. Also, I made a version of Asteroids on my laptop between other activities.

I haven't decided yet whether to skip church next Sunday. I don't want to do it every week.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2231669 - 03/19/12 12:08 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
RoRoinMD Offline
Member

Registered: 01/17/12
Posts: 871
Originally Posted By: AlwaysTrying
Kids went to their Nana's house Saturday afternoon, so I missed out on one of my nights with the kids.

So, to give more space to W this weekend, I left the house when I was done with the kids and didn't come to church today, either. It was actually pretty liberating to have all that time on my hands. I had a pretty good GAL weekend.

I spent the weekend at my brother's house. It's only about a half hour from where I live, but that's far enough that it prevents us from spending a lot of time together. We spent a lot of time welding things onto and grinding things off of his dune-buggy-to-be. Also, I made a version of Asteroids on my laptop between other activities.

I haven't decided yet whether to skip church next Sunday. I don't want to do it every week.


AlwaysTrying - Good job on getting out of the house. Maybe you can visit a few other churches on alternate Sundays. I am partial to my church, but visiting my friend's church helped give me a mental break from my sitch. Even if just for a couple of hours.
_________________________
Me:34
H:38
SS:19 - lives in NC with his mom
M:3
Bomb #1: 1/3/12 - We're not compatible. I want out.
Bomb #2: 1/12/12 - Found out about EA/PA
H moves out 10/2/12

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#2231673 - 03/19/12 12:55 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: RoRoinMD]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Originally Posted By: RoRoinMD
[quote=AlwaysTrying]AlwaysTrying - Good job on getting out of the house. Maybe you can visit a few other churches on alternate Sundays. I am partial to my church, but visiting my friend's church helped give me a mental break from my sitch. Even if just for a couple of hours.


Thanks for the suggestion. It would be nice to get a break and still have that community connection.

I'm partial to my church because that's where my kids are, and where they are taking their religious education classes on Sunday mornings, and where the other families we interact with are, etc, etc.

Also, I go to a Unitarian Universalist church. It's a very different experience and I can't just go to the place down the street and get something out of it.

It's not that I'm looking for some way to spend my Sundays, because I don't have any trouble figuring that out. It's that I don't want to give up on seeing my kids on Sundays - I just want to find a way I can do it without stressing out my wife.

I want very much for our current separation to "work" - I want to give our R the time it needs to heal and make sure I have time and space to do the work I need to do without W having to escalate to dragging the kids into a two-house lifestyle.

Maybe I have to give up on seeing them Sundays. I don't know. I wish I was better at predicting when W is going to need more or less space.

She sat down with me to watch TV on purpose the other day... Friday night. She even stayed after I started watching a show she had already seen. She was calm and comfortable... and I was really nice having someone else on the couch with me. I considered putting on a different show - one she hadn't already seen, but I decided that would be too much like pursuing her to change the show to something that she would be more likely to stay around for.

I didn't want to make it seem like I was trying to make her stay. I was surprised she was with me at all after all she said about needing space this week. I do believe this warming of relations had a lot to do with my deciding to own the debt we have created.

But about 7 minutes into the show, the main characters started having a bitter feud over money they owed each other. W got really tense. I wish I had just acknowledged it directly to her and said something like, "Ugh, this is not what I'm in the mood for right now. I'm going to put on something else."

I was afraid of acting like I was pursuing and couldn't think of something witty to say, so instead I acted like I lost interest in the show and walked into the kitchen. I guess I really didn't want to be walked out on. As I was walking back, W said, "I'm going to go lie down."

She spent the next hour and a half in her room on her iPad. Probably talking to totally-not-an-EA-guy.

After that, I brought D15 home and started a movie with W watched for a while.


I guess I'm picking my wife's behavior apart a bit, but the picture that is forming for me is that, although things are often fine or even nice between W and I, the reason she most often needs space is that random events can trigger all of her anxiety about me in her life. I'm too tired to tell if I'm thinking straight right now. I have to go to bed!
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2232261 - 03/20/12 10:55 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I just spent another Tuesday at the house making dinner, being with kids, cleaning up, with just a little chatting between W and I. No drama. No expectations.

Maybe I really am getting the gift of time. More days like this would be just fine.

It is sad to think that if I put half the effort into being a husband before that I put into being a person she'd be a fool to leave now... I wouldn't be here. It's so easy to take your life for granted and assume marriage is forever.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2232265 - 03/20/12 11:04 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Glad you had a good evening. Was talking with Zig earlier on her post how I'm so much more aware of the little things now more than ever before. Regardless do what happens we can take that with us and enjoy more of life.

Keep at what you're doing. It seems to have some positive returns
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2232516 - 03/21/12 10:32 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
W had her kickboxing belt test today. I was more than happy to have the kids for the evening. It was such a nice day and I'll take any excuse to be at the house.

Getting her yellow belt is a pretty big deal to her, so I wanted to help her celebrate. She is mostly gluten-free so she can't have cakes. I got a gluten-free key lime pie, and had a few friends over.

It was a nice evening.

I have to think of a way to show her I'm giving her more space even though we are running into each other more. I think working on the financial separation would probably work the best.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2232674 - 03/22/12 03:22 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
The single biggest problem in my life is the breakdown of my marriage and the damage that is causing to my family and household. I want desperately to fix this, but it's not completely within my control.

The second biggest problem in my life is that I don't get enough sleep. This has been the case since I was an adolescent. I can't get enough of being awake. There is more to do. I don't want to sleep until my body is well past the point of functioning well. I get less done because I'm not at my best, then I loose sleep trying to catch up and the cycle continues.

I've said I'm going to stop this cycle a number of times before but it never sticks. I wonder how much like someone tying to quit smoking or drinking this is. The temptation back to the bad habit is always there. I'll do it just one time... but I slide into day after day sleep deprivation again.

So many bad things follow from my not getting enough sleep, that it is probably the most important supportive action I can take to help my marriage right now, so I have to find a way to get it done.

Do I make myself a calendar? 30 days of being well-rested? I know I need to Just Do It, but so does a smoker hoping to change their habit.

This time I'll really do it? Well, I'll do it tonight, probably. I just need a way to push myself into sticking with it.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2232686 - 03/22/12 03:43 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
There are two areas of my life that I have pulled a fairly good 180 with.

1) I have found the energy and drive to take care of stuff around the house that I never had before - I always put it off or took the lazy route. I do the dishes, clean up after the kids, and make dinner almost every time I'm with the kids. I still feel that desire to crash on the couch and rest for a few minutes after I've tucked the kids in, but now I get the house cleaned for the next day first.
2) I exercise almost every day. Not a lot, but for 20 minutes or so at least almost every day. I'm stronger and I feel great, although I'm almost constantly a little sore because I like to push a little harder every time. (Surprisingly, 20 minutes is enough time to build muscle)

Other 180's I've done weren't about creating or changing existing habits, so much as they were about changing the way I react to things or handle things to improve the way W and I, and the kids and I relate, or harder to quantify things like putting more time and effort into caring for other people.

I've got to take something from those two big habit changers above to help me with the sleep goal. I have to be honest. With both of them, they are helpful in and of themselves, but I explicitly visualize how those changes make me more attractive to my spouse when I'm considering slacking off.

I know I'm supposed to be making these changes for myself, but that works for me. I feel weird and unconvinced about visualizing how going to bed on time is going to make me more attractive. I know it is actually true - who wouldn't prefer a mate who was more attentive and aware and witty and could remember things and be punctual, etc, etc ,etc. You want to be with someone who takes care of themselves and is overflowing with life energy and feels good.

In terms of attractiveness, it's probably more important than the working out, really. I think what is hard for me to accept is that it is not so much about doing something as not doing something. There are no immediately visible results. I have to *stop* doing everything else.

And honestly, that voice that goes through my head at 10 after 10 that says, "You'll be a better person if you go to sleep now." just becomes a downer as the night wears on and I feel like a jerk for not doing what I told myself I would.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2232765 - 03/22/12 10:18 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I've had two extra days with the kids this week. I'm counting my blessings.

I'm also reminding myself to get out of W's way... Things have been nice, but I think I was pushing overstaying my welcome today.

On a completely unrelated note, detaching is not my strong suit. I found discarded pregnancy test wrapper in the bathroom and I was thrown. It turns out D15 had used it. I found this to be a relief. That's... the way I feel right now. I'm more comfortable knowing my daughter is sexually active than considering that my wife would be. ugh.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2232819 - 03/23/12 09:48 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
My mind is stuck this morning. I wish I could go back to the end of September and tell myself not to move back in. W was thinking about reconciling around our anniversary. It is so painful to think about. I could have been rebuilding my marriage as a team with her help all of this time.

Instead, I came home without letting her argue against it. Really callously, really. I thought I had a right to be home and be with my kids and that her way of fixing things - kicking me out - was absolutely morally wrong. I was so miserable then that I said I was moving back even if it pushed her to divorce. I'm pretty sure I actually said it out loud. It was a bluff, and a really dumb one.

I wish she had said that she was having some positive thoughts about our marriage but she needed me to stay away a little longer or something. Something. But instead, the last thing she said to me on the matter was that she wanted things to get better between us... and then she filed for divorce.

I can see now how my thoughts and actions were so clouded by anger and... entitlement. I thought I was entitled to live in my house and work on my marriage in a reasonable way. It seems pretty reasonable, really.

I want to tear the world in two when I think about how I missed this opportunity. frown

So, when I think about it now, I'm trying to do two things: How to avoid getting in my own way and missing another opportunity like this, and trying to understand what I broke inside my wife that week so I can figure out how to reset the clock and allow her to be thinking those thoughts again.

I want to ask her what changed that day.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2233212 - 03/25/12 06:25 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm really struggling today. I was last night, too. I'm so tired of this life. I want my wife and my marriage and my kids back so badly. Ironically, (or not?) I got to see my kids nearly every day this week. I loved it.

Maybe my wife is giving me the gift of time right now, but there is no way to know without asking... and I'm afraid it's better not to ask. Well, no way to know without asking or waiting.

I know what I can do to improve my chances of reconciliation. I have to take care of some financial issues and take care of myself. I need to keep the compassion and energy flowing into the family and relationship I do have.

But I'm tired. And I want to be loved and accepted so badly.

I've been doing a lot of wishing over the last two days, and wishing doesn't make it so. It might actually make things worse.

I was supposed to cook dinner yesterday for D15 who I only see one or two days a week typically. I very rarely get my whole family together to eat dinner. W took her out to eat on a whim, when I had already started cooking (for 5) without considering my feelings. When I explained asked for her consideration in the future, I got zero empathy. Real typical WAW response, which I knew to expect and I did expect, but I still found it hurtful and more salt in the wound.

I'm not detached.

Today, I feel miserable. I need to pick myself back up.

I haven't been meditating. It helps; I should be.

I need a hug.

I'm going to go see a movie. It's a distraction. I'm going to wish I had done something productive, but I can't seem to get going right now.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2233241 - 03/25/12 09:32 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
hopingandpraying Offline
Member

Registered: 02/21/12
Posts: 283
I feel your pain. I am also NOT detached. I just talked to my DB coach today and she said that I need to move on as if my H has made the decision to D and that we are divorced because I'm not doing myself any good.

I do need a hug, too, and I only want it from one person and that person doesn't want to hug me. I truly feel your pain!!

I hope you enjoy your movie and can get your mind off of things.
_________________________
M: 27 H: 28 T: 8 yrs M: 6 yrs
Sep: 2/18/12 (I have no feelings for you!)
EA/PA Uncovered: 2/26/12
H introduces OW to his fam: June
H moves ALL stuff out: July

I'm living my truth without your lies..

Top
#2233288 - 03/26/12 12:50 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: hopingandpraying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
hope - I know you only want the hug from one person. I completely relate. If you can find a hug from someone else, it might still do you a lot of good.

The movie did not work. It reminded me of how much I love my wife and how strongly I feel about protecting my family. I still didn't want to go home. I stayed in the theater and watched the next movie that came on. I've never done that before. Again, I ended up thinking about W throughout the movie and especially afterward.

I nearly texted my wife. "I've spent hours trying to think of the right words. I can't do it." I've spent hours trying to put my mind around how to get her to come out and say, "Yes, our marriage is worth saving."

I know that I need to keep my needs to myself. I have to be silent until she needs me. She has our kids, our house, and always my full support. I worry with such an easy deal, she'll take so long to get there.

I know I have to get to sleep (fail today, again), take care of myself, take care of my finances, and take care of my job. Those things combined with maintaining my devoted support for her and our family will speak to her even when she won't listen to my words.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2233432 - 03/26/12 04:06 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm finding it extremely hard to get out of my head and get my head out of my situation. I'm nearly desperate for some form of validation from my wife. Any form. Am I a good father? Do you respect what I'm doing on any level? Do you know I'm trying to something good for all of us?

This is backsliding for me. I need to get back to calm, cool, and detached. I need to give her space to come to me when she is ready. Or something.

Ugh. Really, I probably just need to think about this a lot less. But never in my life has there been anything as important to me as saving my family. I want to say to her:
"If I had known I was destroying my family, I would have done things differently. If I had understood how I was making you feel and pushing you away, I would have done things differently. I have more thoughts about this, and I wish very much that you would ask."

I think what would make a big difference to me is if I can realize and focus in on some sign of progress or find a way to embrace the opportunity I have right now more fully.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2233641 - 03/27/12 09:44 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
When is it right or wrong to ask your wife if she wants to come to your counseling session. I feel like we're on the verge of that happening, but then I remembered that you're not supposed to push your S to come.

I'm not pushing. I plan to just ask if she might come.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2234432 - 03/30/12 01:38 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Wife probably won't come to dinner today because she has IC, but she might be looking for leftovers later. I'm planning chicken marsala which is traditionally served with noodles, but W is gluten-free (sometimes) so I thought I'd serve it over wild rice. Which is easier for the little kids to eat anyway.

So how about chicken Marsala over wild rice? No? I thought I'd put sauteed garlic, onions, and finely chopped carrots in the rice to make it more interesting.

With some Asparagus on the side... What do you think? Crazy?
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2234775 - 04/01/12 09:18 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
W is probably coming to my counseling session Tuesday, BTW. I'm trying to stay open to the idea that she's coming to tell me it's over and to just stop already. Or that she is willing to try the separation longer but insists on moving out of the house and throwing our finances into utter disaster.

It's hard not to be optimistic that there might be a more positive outcome...

My goal is that she will work with the C and I to adjust the current arrangement as needed so that she feels that she has enough space.

I think part of that issue - that she needs to be living further from me - is that she doesn't trust me not to spy on her. I hope the C can help us find ways to work on that.

I imagined having a conversation with W. Basically, 1) Do you believe that our childrens' well-being and future is of utmost importance to me. 2) I pledge and swear by my love for our children that I will never invade your privacy by x,y,z.

x,y,z being logging into her accounts, reading texts on her phone, looking at her call and text history.

I don't know. The distrust about her privacy is a huge issue for her
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2234782 - 04/01/12 09:46 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I saw a lot of my kids this week. I love it but it makes me feel anxious. I don't feel W pushing me away right now, but I don't want to leave her any excuses to feel that I'm not giving her enough space or reasons that she needs to move out.

My S6 had an sort of... This is not a big deal, but it was like a little stroke. He lost the ability to speak for a little while. Doctors have checked him out and said that sometimes this thing can happen, never happen again, and it's no big deal. That night, W and I were freaked out, though, fearing the worst.

She called me over to spend the night when it happened. She called me in the middle of the workday for emotional support.

I'm seeing signs stacking up that are making me feel hopeful. I can rest with a lot less anxiety if I know that W and I have some time to work through this separation and she doesn't feel pressured to take some more drastic step.

Here is one sign: I messed up and she didn't eat me alive. I was about the leave the house to get some coffee because I had a pretty bad caffeine headache. W got home with D3 who needed a nap and was immediately leaving with D15. Now I couldn't leave the house.

I was afraid to ask her for what I wanted directly: "please allow me to get a cup of coffee or stop for a cup of coffee for me." I acted out a series of behaviors like those found in "No More Mr. Nice Guy". Instead I made a weak statement about how I was about to get a coffee and it sure would be nice if she got one for me instead. Obviously, she declined my invitation. Then I got resentful and thought about all the favors I've done for her and was angry with her that she couldn't do one little thing for me.

And even more resentful because I knew that I couldn't complain because she's the WAS and I can't ask anything from her.

I wrestled with my phone for about 10 minutes to try to send a text that wasn't stupid and somehow told her how I felt. Finally, I sent this:[quote]I have a terrible caffeine headache. I was literally about to leave the house when you got here. You make me feel like a monster.[quote]
Clearly, I failed. It was a stupid text that really did little to express how I was actually feeling.

She replied, basically, wtf, texts like this make me want to ignore your texts. You didn't tell me you were sick and I(W) was trying to get shopping done so you can make dinner. Also, you may feel like a monster, but I didn't MAKE you feel like a monster.

I told her to ignore my cranky text, that I regretted sending it, and that I wasn't clear from the beginning, so it was my fault. Also, thanks for getting groceries.


So, a month or two ago, W might have ignored the stupid text that I should have known better than to have sent. But she didn't. She took the time to articulate her own feelings. I wish I hadn't tested her this way, but I feel like this is a good indication that we are communicating better in general or that at least she feels more comfortable expressing herself.

Then we had dinner. I made tilapia with roasted potatoes and lemon garlic asparagus. She liked it. She did ask me Friday why I was making chicken Marsala. Then she accused me. "Are you making it because it's my favorite thing to eat?" She had an appointment and did not join us for dinner Friday, but did pull the leftovers out of the fridge when she got home and had a full serving.

When W replied to my hurt text, she kindly suggested I try some tea for the caffeine. When she got home from grocery store, I had already ingested raw coffee grounds because it was that bad, but she brought home a new coffee press and some fresh coffee beans.

She doesn't drink coffee.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2234790 - 04/01/12 10:46 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Hey AT, dust off and move on. Very good that her response was different she explained her feelings.

So how will you handle this in the future?

I had a boss who kept chocolate covered expresso beans in his office. I ate a handful before I knew what they were. I was buzzing the rest of the day!

Good luck at the session on Tuesday. Hope it goes well. Keep an eye on those expectations.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2234796 - 04/01/12 11:20 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
Thanks, ces. Yes, trying to keep expectations low. I'll probably spend the last hour before the meeting telling myself, "This could go horribly wrong. Be ready for the worst."

I found myself struggling not to tell her she looked pretty in church today. It looked like she made an extra effort to look good.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2234797 - 04/01/12 11:21 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
In the future, I'm not going to get mad at my W for not doing something I didn't ask her to do.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2234799 - 04/01/12 11:30 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
In addition to "this could go horribly wrong" be sure to add in there, "but I'll be OK, no matter what...."

As far as not saying things to my W and then getting mad about how she did something. I've caught myself doing that and once I was aware of it, it really helped to stop.
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2234803 - 04/01/12 11:42 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I'm going to re-read the Nice Guy book because of this backslide. I knew there was something wrong as I was acting this out but couldn't put my finger on it through the fog of the headache and crankiness. In general, I've been better at that stuff, but with things being what they are with my W, I don't get tested all that often.

The big deal for me here was that I slipped up and did the wrong thing but we communicated our way back to good relations instead of it escalating and spiraling out of control.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2235104 - 04/03/12 10:45 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I have my first counseling appointment with W in months today at 4. Last time we talked about going in to see someone it was becaus she said our separation wasn't working for her (She wanted to miss me but didn't, she needed more space, she felt like spending a day without seeing me was the exception). I asked if we could talk to Laurie the DB coach to see if we can come up with ways to change the arrangement so she feels she is getting what she needed.

She agreed, then I paid for some more DB sessions. I had a private session with Laurie first, then W had a session with her. During her session, she decided she felt too much pressure and we wouldn't have a joint call. I felt like I had just wasted about $250. However, W was noticeably a lot nicer to me after the call, so something positive must have happened.

That was over a month ago and it had been months since we'd seen anyone even before that. I have let W know whenever I was going to see my IC in case she wanted to come along and finally talk about that stuff, but I didn't pressure her or beg her or really even ask her to come.

Things really seem to have improved in the intervening time. I didn't send her an email for one month in response to what Laurie and I had talked about. We have had very very little conflict, aside from W deciding to do taxes separately without telling me. I handled it fairly calmly when she told me.

I don't know what will happen in this session. It is possible that she could confirm that things are getting better and maybe we can continue doing what we're doing. It is possible she could say she still isn't getting what she needs and we can talk about changing things to help her out. It's possible she could tell me she is getting along with me and things are better, but it doesn't matter because she's just done and she has to move out with the kids.

I want to not think about it for the rest of the day and just let it unfold in the session today. But it is hard.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2235347 - 04/04/12 08:55 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
ces67 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/23/11
Posts: 1021
Good luck AT. Hope you can stay busy and not dwell on it but you're right. That's going to be difficult, so don't be too hard on yourself.

I need to re-read the "Nice Guy" book too and really spend some time on the exercises. Maybe we can hold each other accountable to do that.

Hope the session goes well for you today. And remember, no matter what happens, you WILL be able to handle it!
_________________________
Me:45, W:44
S:15, D:12
M:22, T:25
Bomb: July 2010
2 attempts at MC-stopped 09/13
Continue to live in same home-separate rooms

Top
#2236797 - 04/10/12 10:38 AM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: ces67]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
The counseling session was a bust. She asserted that she wants to move things forward (divorce, not separation) and that she wants to move out. with the kids. if I'll let her. (yeah, right!) Current deal was for 3 months and that time is almost up, so she'll be moving on. Then she bent a little and said that actually it makes sense for her to stay at least until the end of the school year. That's two more months.

Otherwise, thoughts and feelings were exchanged, and I think steps in a positive direction were happening. Getting her there showed that we would make more progress with more sessions. This was the most positive session we've had in probably 6 months, and she acknowledged that good things were happening with me and she saw improvement in our relationship.

Counselor suggested we meet again. Maybe every couple of weeks. She suggested we do a two-hour session and resolve some issues. I think my counselor has really invested herself in trying to rescue my marriage. I can tell that she is optimistic about the potential to rebuild our marriage. W was predictably non-committal about a future joint appointment. C asked if W would be willing to meet her separately, and W agreed, but they didn't schedule a time because W didn't have her calendar with her. bah! That was Tuesday.

I waited until the weekend to ask W if she called the C back. Nope. I have been trying not to pressure her about it, but the two-month clock she put me on makes it hard. I only asked her once until today. Today I said that I recognize that the appointment with the C isn't something she is doing for her own reasons and that at this point is something I'm asking her to do. I said that if it puts her out in some way, I could make up for it in some way.

We've been spending more time around each other. We spent a lot at easter. There was a point where she had decided to stay up and watch some TV with me. When we went to bed, I followed her for a moment and touched her arms to say good night. She stopped. I squeezed her arms. She said, "I'm so lonely." I didn't know what to say. I said, "Me too." That was dumb. I wish I had said, "How about a hug?" She would have turned around.

I learned a lot from our weekend together in terms of relationship issues that can be addressed. Having contact rather than strictly staying apart seems a lot more likely to lead to positive changes in our relationship at this point. W doesn't *want* postive changes in our relationship.

I see her again tonight. I plan to try asking her one of the questions my C suggested after the kids go to bed and see what happens.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2236860 - 04/10/12 01:17 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I feel stressed and panicky right now. W hasn't responded to my text, which probably means she is opting not to see the therapist alone.

I keep going over and over in my mind what to say and what not to say when we get a chance to talk alone tonight. How not to push but still encourage her to make the appointment.

Even before this, all morning I've felt this intense desire to reach out to her. It's distracting. I want her to hear how important it is to repair our family and how committed I am to bringing change to allow that to happen. I want to know what I can do right now to move us in the right direction.

I just need to take a moment and realize there are lots of things I already know about that I can do and focus on that.
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
#2236867 - 04/10/12 01:45 PM Re: (NA) Informally separated from WAW, but DBing my best [Re: AlwaysTrying]
AlwaysTrying Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/11
Posts: 243
I want to ask her, "If we end up re-committing to our marriage, are you going to lose something?" "What do you have to lose by seeing the C with me?"
_________________________
- All for the kids -
Me:34, W:35
M:7, T:13
S6, D3 + my D15 from previous marriage
July 2011 "I think I need a separation"
W filed D September
Currently living apart - she has the house, I rent a room

Top
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