Get help from a Divorce Busting® Telephone Coach TODAY! We specialize in helping you get your marriage back on track, even when your spouse has one foot out the door. Don't be discouraged. We can help.
303-444-7004 or 800-664-2435
I wish I could just give you a hug right now..... so here's one from cyber land (((((hug))))). I want to also tell you that you're doing a wonderful job of owning your emotions and realizing what you're feeling and why you're feeling them. Just right then and there is proof that you're one level headed person and in touch with your feelings!
And here's a self satisfying thought I have quite often after getting some of my emotional ducks in a row ( i like my ducks in a row too). "Gee if all these MLcers were so in touch with their feelings like we are, we wouldn't be in the mess now would we?"
If it's any help, absolutely everything that you've posted in regards to your feelings of being overwhelmed with single parent hood, getting frustrated with yourself for still loving and wanting someone that can't reciprocate that love, feeling the burden of your children's grief, and then H acts as if everything is just wonderful for him and his new life as you're slammed into this new life that you did NOT ASK FOR.... gee welcome to my world.... or should I say welcome to the club? I really understand. We all do.
Do you have an Employee Assistance Program at your new job? I took advantage of that and went to personal counseling for the 3 free sessions they offer. I found a great counselor and wished I could've afforded to see her after the initial 3 visits. However she really helped me get on the right path. Im going to tell you the advice she gave me.
This is an emotional trauma. Emotional Trauma is very much like getting in a car accident and breaking every bone in your body. Yet you still keep walking, talking and carrying on because you have to. You are grieving and have been betrayed by the man you love and have children with. You built a life together, and now here this comes out of no where. All you can do is get in touch with these emotions that come over you, in order to sort your feelings out about your H. Allow them to come. Let it wash over you, because it will come in waves. You will be ok and then something will hit you. Hold on, ride it out, but allow yourself to feel what you feel. It's the only way you can sort these emotions out and start to heal. And it just takes time. Give yourself permission to feel these things.
See what I struggled with and still do from time to time is my ego and pride. My head will tell me clever things like " why should I want to be with someone that doesn't want to be with me, treated me this way, lied to me, has got so many issues...etc." Well yes objectively why? But our hearts and our heads are NOT in the same place for this to really click and be fully accepted and felt at the same time. This is where you have to be kind to yourself, and be realistic with yourself. How would you treat you best friend if they were going through the exact same thing? And this is ok, and all part of the healing process. And it takes time.....alot of time. I had to remind myself many times through this to treat myself as I would a friend going through all of this.
My H left a year ago next month. The papers should be signed this week, and it was this week 6 years ago my mother died. Gee, wonder why I've been weepy on and off all day?
For me, it wasn't until I had worked through the majority of my grief did I even have any desire to GAL and actually start to make plans for it and look foward to it. And guess what? It's only been this last month that I've really started to feel normal again, wanting to live life again, and getting excited about what kind of life I can live now. It's only been now have I noticed I am really happy not being in a relationship, and will be ok being single because Im ok with me. I like me. Faking it till you make it didn't work for me.
Also it was at the 4 months post BD that I got the blow of finding out about OW....and that's when I mentally and emotionally got the crap kicked out of me. As long as he didn't have OW I seemed to be semi ok with things, but when I found out about her, I don't think the word devastated could do me justice. I've been so down, I literally wished I were dead at least 4 -5 different times just to escape the pain. Especially when I found out WHO IT WAS.... long story.
I understand the wanting ducks in a row, nothing left to chance...that is so me...what I have learned is that YOU can answer and nurture your inner-child, only you. And its always been that way, we just didn't know as we had a spouse to help at times...really, it has always been up to us, and from your postings, you did just fine with that before H, now it is time to remember that you have always done this, always taken care of your inner-child, and can/will going forward, regardless of the outcome of your sitch.
Don't know about your H, but for me, when the kids were younger I did A LOT more with the day-to-day stuff...I love cooking (used to be a sous-chef in an earlier career), I love laundry (I mean, you get to mix chemicals with different temps of water to see what results you get...lol...chemistry set for real life!)
When W took over completely some of these a few years ago, (cooking and laundry, for example) and a lot of outside (yard decisions, etc) I DID feel cut out, lacking control, just a paycheck...etc, so probably some resentment as I wanted to be the perfect example for my sons of men who cook, clean, do laundry...so eventually I sorta "gave up", which led to less than helpful coping skills...which led to...which led to...you know how these chain reactions go...
There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it's going to be a butterfly. --Buckminster Fuller
Every problem has a solution. Not every problem is mine to solve.
That's pretty insightful. I never thought that by women taking on the role of keeping everything undercontrol with the house would make a man feel that way.
I seriously doubt your wife purposely took on these roles to take anything away from you purposely. She was just doing what needed to be done. Did you see it differently at the time? I ask because this was main complaint from my XH. He was just a paycheck and I was too controlling. He told me " I just gave up." and " You do everything for me anyway, you don't have to do this for me either".
At the time this was happening did you understand why you felt the way you did and then tell her about it? Or did you feel anger and resentment towards her?
That is just how I felt, I am quite sure there are men who would not... For me, I think it was a feeling of being cut out, and the control/fixer person in me just hated that, plus my sense of identity has been tied into it. Working on that.
I wasn't aware at the time, I was focussed on what wasn't getting done and allowing resentment to build. When I would try to help or insert myself, she pushed me away, eventually I quit trying because I know W has a very strong, but quiet stubborn streak (as do I).
W and I have talked about that, and you are right, not purposeful against me, but her trying to be in control of something/anything...this weekend she even said she wasn't ready to let go of that control when I offered to help.
Since I have worked on myself enough, I have been able to let the resentment/control/fix-it go and just flow with her currents better, detachment works (when I remember...lol
There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it's going to be a butterfly. --Buckminster Fuller
Every problem has a solution. Not every problem is mine to solve.
My husband definitely felt that I controlled everything. It wasn't intentional at all. Since I was home I thought he expected me to do everything and I developed resentment about that. I felt like the maid and he felt like he was just a paycheck. I'm sure a lot of couples fall into this. The mistake we made is that we didn't talk about it often enough, so at times we lashed out at each other. One of the first things that my H said after he left is that he felt that he had sacrificed his manhood. I was stunned. I took care of things to make it easier for him and because I thought that was what he wanted. Part of his resentment came from controversy over disciplining the boys. He rarely did it, but when he did it was usually because he didn't like how I was handling something and he would butt in, usually by yelling. To me that wasn't effective, but in hindsight I realize he saw it as not having a role in raising the boys. Clearly this is a pretty easy issue to to workout, but coupled with all of my H's other complaints about me he saw it as a pretty big deal. It really makes me feel bad that he felt squeezed out. That was never my intention. In fact, when he did choose to be involved with the boys it made my heart swell. I wanted a partner. It was never important to me to run the show. I wish my H would see that his passive-aggressive personality contributed to his resentment. I did acknowledge the mistake that I made by taking over and apologized for hurting him. This is something I will definitely be more aware of going forward whether we're together or apart.
In general, even though my H says he forgives me for the areas where I failed he still wants nothing to do with me and has said that he feels anxious driving up our street. So, has he really forgiven me? It seems like he has completely forgotten all of my positive qualities and, in his mind, has turned me into this horrible person who has made him feel like less of a man, controlled, unappreciated, unhappy, etc. What part of this, if any, do I need to own?
golf mom, Please, please stop drinking the kool-aid the man is serving up. Stop accepting the blame for what happened in your marriage. We all had to take on things and listen up! If your man had issues w/what you were doing, he should have spoken up and had conversations w/you about the way he felt. Lord knows, none of us where mind readers.
Yes, he's dumping on you because he couldn't step up to the plate and say what was on his mind. This is the passive-aggressive behavior talking. Sure he didn't have an issue w/you doing all of that stuff at the time, but in crisis, he's going to speak up about every little thing that has crossed him from the get go. Has he said anything yet about the way you kept the house, cooking, etc.? Has he said anything about the way you dress or how you look? They may be the next thing he focuses on. He is looking for justification for why he feels the way he does and believe me, he will pull every little rabbit out of the hat first. He wants to make you feel miserable and he wants to play the victim. Don't allow him to bring you down into the dark hole w/him!
As for him wanting nothing to do w/you....that's mlc at its finest. Why? Because you are a reminder of his past life and it's a life he doesn't want to remember right now. He's searching for something in his past and you were not a part of that past when he was a child. Of course he feels anxious driving up the street...that's guilt talking. Many of them say that they feel smothered or feel like they are dying when they are in the home. Others will have the anxious feelings to the point of not wanting to come any where near their homes. Others will avoid all eye contact w/their spouses. Why? It's guilt and they are afraid that if they do come into their homes or see us, their hearts may soften and may opt to think about returning. They need reasons for staying away and that's when they pull the stunts they do. Honestly, they don't know why they feel the way they do about us, the relationship, etc. All they know is that they have to do this running bit right now and they also know it might be the biggest mistake they make, but they have to try it. It's not you or any of us, but it's all about THEM!
I am going to suggest that you take some time and go to the MLC archives and read up what many of the posters have written over the years and you will see that you are not alone in what he has said and done....golf mom, you are a wonderful and compassionate person and I do not want to see this man take you down into that dark hole. Toss that glass of kool-aid out and start drinking the glass that is half full of wisdom, support and knowledge that we offer here.
And there she goes again.....that Snodderly nails it every time!
Golf Mom, it takes some time for it to sink iin, and grasp at first. I know it did for me. I just couldn't wrap my head around this sort of stuff. I think part of it for me was that I didn't really want to accept just how twisted my MlCer's thinking had become. I mean it's disturbing to see how they rationalize everything by blaming us. But remember we are not to blame for all of this. Only a severely dysfunctional person would blame everything wrong in their lives on their spouse.
I agree with Snodderly, if they had issues with things back then, it was back then they should've been addressed, not now. We are not mind readers, but they like to blame us for not being mind readers. Been there, done that, oh boy howdy have I.
Golf Mom you and I both got the song and dance about how we were so controlling and took over everything as we did our roles as SAHM. Of course it was never your intention to conquer the house as if you were a dictator and he some pitiful subject to do as he was told. You were a family, working together as a family for the best interest of your children. MLCers re write history and have selective memories. I remember talking to XH about issues after he left and I was just dumbfounded of his perspective and memory. He then said to me "well you and I seem to remember things very differently and completely blame eachother for everything". And I wasn't even blaming him for anything during the conversation, yet he accused me of blaming him for everything....this is projection of course.
I did get the criticism about the house, and the way I was cooking. Didn't get any criticism about the way I dressed or looked though, but Im sure that was on the tip of his tonque next. Now I do agree with him, I am not a good housekeeper anymore now that Im working. However H never lifted a finger to do the dishes, mow the lawn, help with laundry (except his own), feed the animals, wash the vehicles, or even clean up his own garage or shop. The one time I saw his apartment he said to me " well it's not as nice as the other apartment I wanted, but at least it's CLEAN". Well his floor needed swept, toilet wiped down, bathroom counter wiped off, and bathroom and kitchen rug needed washed as far as I was concerned.
Do you still have contact with H? Are you still emailing and texting? Still having R talks? No contact is the best advice I could offer. I know it really helped me get where I needed to be. It was the hardest part of everything but my self esteem really started to grow when I began to live my life without him in it, except knowing he was still seeing the kids. Then he started contact with me again on a spewing basis and next thing you know I started emotionally doing backslides from where I was at. But it's par for the course.
And once you really get a firm grasp that this truly is ALL about them....then the things that hurt so much, don't really hurt that much anymore.
Have you read the MLC for Dummies yet? It's the best thing you could read now! It's spot on, but hilarious!I've read that many times and still do every now and then because it's so true.
GM, I just had to pop in here and agree with snod and kimmish...
My W claimed that I was controlling... and I wasn't even allowed to write on the calendar... lol... No, really... I was the SAHP and (ok, truth is I didn't step up, if that's the argument on my sitch) my W made all the plans for the household even while I was supposed to be "in charge"...
Another one my W would tell me was that I always needed to be right... of course, that was her response to pretty much anything I disagreed with her on... she pretty much nailed me before I was out of the gate, because if I tried to state my side, I was wrong because I was even trying to be right...
There may be some "truth" to what they say... or at best... understand that is how they FEEL... even if it has no basis...
Because you are simply a target... because they feel controlled... they feel "wrong"... they feel poor... they feel drunk...
It's the fault of the LBS...
Until... or if... they start their healing process... and then... they may stop blaming the LBS... but also understand... for all they blamed the LBS prior... they may never have clarity...
Understand how your H might feel the way he does, even if you had a different experience of things... and only own the things that you can say, "yes... I did that or behaved that way and I regret it and will fix that."
You could have jumped through hoops for your H and addressed everyone one of his complaints, and you know what? When they're in crisis mode nothing you did would have been good enough or new complaints about you would have arisen.
Do you want to know how I know this? It's because I lived it. I had no idea what was the matter with my H. All I knew is that after a while I stopped trying to change to please him because it was never ending.
As KD said, only own those things that you can say yes to. If something your H said stung a little, have a closer look at it and fix it if you don't like that about yourself. Don't do it for your H though, do it for yourself.