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I have been browsing the forum for several weeks now and have found lots of good advice to help me, especially the 180 info. So I joined and am now a member. Thanks to all for sharing.
To be brief, my situation is as follows: 28yo male, 24yo wife, 5yr relationship, 3yo son, 3yrs living together, married only 5 months, she is a part-time server, I work full-time with day job in marketing, also managing partner of startup company with mostly out of town weekend work, although only twice a month for me.
Separation #1(days) was early Feb 2011, her choice, citing increased lack of affection/love and the seemingly non-interest in marriage. Odd thing was that I already had the ring and was waiting on Valentine's Day, which was several days later, to pop the question. So I did and we planned for a summer wedding.
Separation #2(weeks) was late Apr 2011, her choice, citing the same stagnant lack of affection/love. We opted for counseling and strengthening our faith. Reconciled weeks later. Things improved a lot.
We joined a church, started going more often, and eventually got married in courthouse Oct 2011. Things were going very well. Love and affection, although weren't perfect, greatly improved. Also I reduced my out of town work to once a month, even taking the family with me then.
Fast forward, two months of no out of town work later, to mid/late Jan 2012, we were planning a big wedding ceremony for the summer, I was continually affectionate more than I use to be. Everything seemed OK! Or so I thought...
A week later, first week of Feb, she wrote me a letter stated that she was not feeling loved by me and that she was not pleased intimately! Wow, I thought all was well. I admit that the following week was crucial, but I didn't value her feelings and chose not to do anything different to help resolve her feeling this way intimately. Big mistake, weekend before Valentine's day she seemed upset but said all was OK.
Then on valentine's day she got me a gift, then I gave her one and she was very dry in accepting it. I knew something was wrong, we talked she stated the same issues and that she no longer cared anymore but that she wasn't leaving. Few days later she came home, stated she was done, what plans should we make about our son, and that she wanted divorce without ANY emotions at all.
I begged and pleaded to no avail. We have been separated since then, Feb 18, 2012, although we still live together. I have asked her to reconsider and go to God about it. She stated she's not going to anyone and isn't changing her mind. She works most evenings, and a few nights a week she gets home, change clothes and goes to one of two of her only friends left. I immediately thought she was lying/had someone else and would check phone records and follow her at first but have stopped and left her in God's hands. Currently in a successful 180 mode for 2 weeks now.
Two weeks ago after going out she came home drunk, and hugged me while on couch and kept saying she's sorry. I took her to bed, attempted to be intimate to no avail. Again 1 week ago she came home drunk, layed with me and kept stating she hates me, and that I've screwed her up for life and that she will never love again and that she gets lonely. I took her to bed and we were intimate. Next day she apologized and said she doesn't want that to ever happen again.
Then a few days ago while on couch she text me stating she cries to sleep every night, and daily thinks about getting back together but don't think it will work and doesn't want to waste time. Also stated she is lonely and feels lost, then asked me to pray for her. I simply stated I know how she feels and that I always pray for her.
She stopped going to church after split, stopped talking to a couple friends, when parents found out, stopped talking to them as much, and has told me that all her friends have been telling her to reconcile. She seems to be in full rebellion mode and I simply ask all reading to pray for her as well.
I learned that I have been angry with her and haven't communicated it, instead allowing my anger to subconsciously affect my affection and love towards her. I didn't like when she went out to party, her smoking, or her disrespectful behavior towards me(texting/facebook/twitter all the time while we are talking and even in bed!) so when she would try to be intimate I would not be into it mentally and at times would even push her away. I knew I was attracted to her looks still but could not figure out why I was so uninterested in being more affectionate and intimate with her until she broke up last time and God revealed it in a dream I had.
To the subject topic...
Her past: One instance of sexual abuse as child, 5 younger siblings with more privileged upbringing, pregnancy at 16(baby born dead), physical abuse by father of child that died, high school dropout, attempted rape as adult, many friends over years of gay/bi/lesbian lifestyles, one arrest for shoplifting as teenager.
Her present: Diagnosed with anger-management 2 years ago citing past abuse physical and sexual, and depression 2 years ago citing death of child, and resentment of parents for siblings better upbringing.
My question, depression and divorce? Any thoughts, comments, or opinions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for reading and sorry so long.
I am dealing with a depressed wife that is asking for a divorce also but my situation is a lot different. It sounds like have had a VERY rocky relationship that is going to be very difficult to work through.
Loc: Little Egg NJ
Welcome to the board and sorry that you find yourself here. Post often as you will be in moderation. It is important that you read the divorce remedy ASAP. I will post Sandis 37 rules to start. I would stop being intimate until things are better.
1.Do not pursue, reason, chase, beg, plead or implore! This turns the spouse completely off!
2. No frequent phone calls to spouse.......let him/her be the one to call you. Then don't try to hang on to your spouse through conversation.....instead, you say good-bye first.
3. Do not point out good points in marriage or try to get him/her to read marriage books, look at your M pictures, etc. Especially, do not get him/her to read the DB/DR book. That is for you only!
4. Do not follow your spouse around the house like a puppy dog trying to get his/her time and attention.
5. Do not encourage talk about the future. They don't want to think about a future with you at the moment, so stay clear of that subject.
6. Do not ask for help from family members or friends. Don't discuss private matters with them that would upset your spouse.
7. Do not ask for reassurances (That is showing neediness and being clingy.) Show self-respect and self confidence.
8. Do not buy gifts to make "brownie points". (Can't buy his/her love and affection.)
9. Do not schedule dates together at this point. (That is pursuing.) Save for later when the R is much better.
10.Do not spy on spouse by checking emails, phone bills, etc. (Not good for you and will make matters worse.)
11.Do not say "I Love You" (It is being "pushy" and trying to make your spouse say it back to you......he/she will despise you for it.)
12.Act "as if" you are moving on with your life with or without them and that you are going to be okay. Keep a good attitude.
13.Be cheerful, strong, outgoing and attractive at all times! In other words, be the best you can be and look the best you can look at all times. Even when wearing jeans and T-shirt, wear good cologne, b/c it does cause the spouse to take notice.
14.Don't sit around waiting on your spouse to see what kind of mood he/she is in or what he/she is going to do or say – get busy, think of things to do. Go to church, go out with friends, etc. in order to get a life for yourself without waiting on your wife/husband.....but it is okay to invite them, just don't act as if it will change your plans if they do or don't go.
15.When at home with your spouse, (if you usually start the conversation---then don't, wait for him/her) then, be rather scarce or with your words, but don't sound rude or too short like you are mad. If your spouse asks what's wrong....just say "nothing" and have a pleasant expression on your face. Keep it short and simple. Don't get into an argument! Stay polite and don’ t act like you are pouting. Use poise and class. This does not mean to act like you aren’t speaking, but don’t be overly talkative.
16.If you are in the habit of asking your spouse his/her whereabouts, ASK THEM NOTHING!! No matter what time he/she comes home! You are giving them space and asking no questions! You enjoy your time with your kids, friends, etc. Remember, you are getting a life, also.
17.You need to make your partner think that you have had an awakening and, as far as you are concerned, you are going to move on with your life, with or without your spouse.
18.Do not be nasty, angry or even cold - just pull back and wait to see if spouse notices and, more important, realize what he/she will be missing. (But never ask him/her if he/she has noticed any changes!!) This is important! If you do, then you have blown it.
19.No matter what you are feeling TODAY, only show your spouse happiness and contentment. This can confuse some of them b/c it is not what they expected. Show your spouse someone he/she would want to be around all the time, somebody that can be attractive and fun to be with. That somebody is you! Don't overkill in your attempts to outshine another person your spouse may be having an A with (if there is OP in the picture) to the point of looking like your attempts are "fake" b/c your spouse will see through all of that.
20.All questions about marriage should be put on hold, until your spouse wants to talk about it (which may be a while)so this takes patient on your behalf.
21.Never lose your cool! Don't let your spouse trap you into a fight. Don't take her/his bait.....leave the room or the house for a while, if you have to, in order to avoid a fight.
22.Don't be overly enthusiastic, don't over-kill; in anything you do b/c it will come across as fake.
23.Do not argue about how your spouse feels about something (it only makes his/her feelings more negative.) Only they know how they feel!
24.Be patient......very, very patient. Give your spouse space and time. When you pull back, it will draw them towards you. It feels opposite of what you want to do, but it works!
25.Listen carefully to what your spouse is really saying to you. Look them in the eyes when they talk to you. Do not interrupt them when they are speaking and stop what you may be working on to look at them when they talk. This shows them that you really care about what they are saying.
26.Learn to back off, shut up and walk away when you want to speak out (or scream and yell).
27.Take care of yourself (exercise, sleep, laugh & focus on all the other parts of your life that are not in turmoil). This is for your health's sake.
28.Be strong and confident and learn to speak softly. Read self help books, inspirational books or listen to tapes. They are for you only.
29.Know that if you can do 180's, your smallest CONSISTENT actions will be noticed much more than any words you can say or write.
30.Do not be openly show that you are "desperate" or "needy" even when you are hurting more than ever and truly feel desperate and needy. This is a large turn-off for your spouse.
31.Do not focus on yourself when communicating with your spouse, instead, focus on them.
32.Do not believe any of what you hear and less than 50% of what you see. Your spouse will speak in absolute negatives because he/she is hurting and scared.
33.Do not give up no matter how dark it is or how bad you feel.
34.Do not ask your spouse if he/she has noticed your changes. Those changes are for you and for the rest of your life...with or without your spouse. If it is just to get your spouse back...they won't last and the same problems will return.
35.Do not send several TM's or emails throughout the day unless absolutely necessary.
36. It is best to stay away from the bar scenes where other problems easily arise.
37. Do not backslide from your hard earned changes
M 50 W 49 D 16 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
Thanks guys for responding. Will definitely stay clear of being intimate. What reasons should I not be intimate with her, if she initiates it? She wants a divorce because of lack of intimacy. A 180 would be being very intimate, at her request wouldn't it?
Yes we saw counselor. That's how she got the diagnosis. But we only went a few times. She felt better and we stopped. BIG mistake I know now because all the issues of her wanting to leave, the easy way out, seem to be a direct result of a reoccurred depression. I looked into it all after she called it quits. A bit too late I realize. Just took her feelings for granted unfortunately. Now she isn't willingto seek counseling or speak to anyone so I'm simply being patient. We read the love languages together. I knew her language. Just didn't care enough to show her. And as stated early, I was subconsciously angry at her and it affected my affection and the way I loved her.
Never leave the bed. I think you should work back towards that. If your wife does not want to sleep with you, she can pick a different spot. You need your strength and sleep to work on saving your marriage.
It has been asked if you know your wife's love languages.
Does she know yours?
I ask this because you stated that you blocked yourself.
She has had a very tough life. Very tough.
Have you read any guy books ? Like Hold on to your nuts ?
When times were good in your mind. What did she mention?
What did you feel ?
No matter what. Always offer a safe haven. With respect and boundaries. Do not be afraid to call out bad behavior. Do not be afraid to get up and walk away when you feel uncomfortable. But always be respectful.
You mentioned that a 180 would be intimate.
But what is intimate to you?
What is intimate to your wife ?
You state your subconsciously angry at her?
That is a paradox.
You have hinted at lack of respect when being alone.
Does your wife know that you want to spend that time together alone?
Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul. unconditional love is awesome!
She is still in full rebellion mode guys. Odd thing is that I'm worried about things because of her depressive history. I KNOW she is still in a depressive state but realize its nothing I can do to help. Since Feb 18 when she called it quits, she has washed dishes not once, or cleaned up the house at all, I've been doing it everyday since. She never cleans up behind herself or our son and when I get home everyday from work the house is generally messed up. She stays up late till 2-3am and gets up late with our son late(11-12noon) everyday, so when I get home he's tired and ready to take a nap at 5pm when he should have at 12noon when she finally gets up with him. Also 3 nights a week she goes out leaving him with me, mostly Fri and Sat when she goes out dancing till 6am. He wakes up crying for mommy everytime and it kills me. She works in evening so as soon as I get home, she goes to work so we don't see each other hardly at all except when she's passing by the living room to go to the kitchen most nights.
I've been doing very well continually spending loads of time with son, becoming very active in church, and growing spiritually and personally. She even thanked me last week for the things I've been doing so she has definitely taken notice. I haven't cried in over a week. But last evening I overheard her talking to a female friend saying that she feels great and that she is almost over me and that she feels good inside and out. The audacity of her saying these things while in the next room kinda got to me and made me feel very sad, so I left the house to grab a movie, just to get away. And cried. I've still been doing the 180 stuff well and will continue to do so.
Just super worried about her feeling 'great' and not even realizing that she is depressed. *Exhales*
Thanks for reading guys. Guess I needed to vent.
Just wondering if anyone has had any experience with a depressive spouse that would require any changes to doing the typical 180 stuff? Also are there any ladies that can offer ANY advice???