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A Message from Michele
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#2756020 - 08/11/17 12:56 AM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: bttrfly]
bttrfly Online
Member

Registered: 06/22/15
Posts: 1686
Loc: Massachusetts
^^I should qualify -
I feel like I've been alone in grieving this marriage, which makes it worse, somehow. Makes you wonder if any of it was real.

I'm sure I'm not alone- I'm sure he's going through his own process. I can see that our friends and family have also been affected by this. Of course our son has his own grieving process in this. But the most personal part, the shared relationship between us - I feel I'm alone in grieving that and that's been quite difficult for me, to say the least.

I didn't even realize that until she passed and all of us shared the grief. It was enlightening. Another lesson from my beautiful friend.
_________________________
M 20+ T25+
BD April 6, 2015
D Final 12/21/16

"If you focus on the hurt, you will continue to suffer. If you focus on the lesson you will continue to grow."


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#2756022 - 08/11/17 01:24 AM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: bttrfly]
job Offline

Member

Registered: 01/16/00
Posts: 24217
Loc: Maryland
I am sorry to come here today and read that you lost our newest furry friend. She lived a long life...16! She went peacefully and on her own terms when she was ready to let it all go. She came into your life at a time that you needed her and you will have the memories that you made w/her to help you along the way. She was very special to you. No one can understand how an animal touches our hearts, but they do in their own way and it's always sad when they cross the rainbow bridge.

I hope that you and your family can settle on a college for your son, i.e., one that you and your son think will be the best for him. It's not easy doing the college searches, but I am confident that you will find the right one for him.

Hang in there. When you feel the need to cry, then cry. There is no set time limit on grieving. You've had a lot happen in a very short period of time and it's going to hit you when you least expect it for quite some time. Thinking of you today.

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#2756246 - 08/12/17 04:00 PM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: bttrfly]
25yearsmlc Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/06
Posts: 12722
Loc: CA- now East coast
[quote=bttrfly]^^I should qualify -
I feel like I've been alone in grieving this marriage, which makes it worse, somehow. Makes you wonder if any of it was real.

I'm sure I'm not alone- I'm sure he's going through his own process. I can see that our friends and family have also been affected by this.



Yes many more people are affected than even we would have expected. I'm torn between two beliefs about this -

1) thinking this way^^^
and or

2) the other side of it, (which is more cynical, admittedly) reminds me not to project my own moral compass/values onto h.

Butterfly, the "WTF was real??" questions are very challenging. Man, that's probably what I've spent the most time stuck in. I don't want to do the same type of marital revisions h has done. I know there were happy years but how many - I cannot say.

Caroline Myss wrote that "Endless wondering is endless suffering" and that's something to consider.

Maybe there really are no "answers" to our questions. I ponder FOO issues too, but I too, have those. I'm beginning to think in reality we all have unresolved childhood issues.

And we cope and we grow.

We don't inflict pain on the people who love us the most, we don't turn away from or deny the consequences, or pretend not to see...so yes, I am certain I've inaccurately projected far too much of myself onto h. Maybe for decades. Ugh cry

I am just sharing my own discoveries and opinions. I hope I'm not projecting onto you.


Of course our son has his own grieving process in this. But the most personal part, the shared relationship between us - I feel I'm alone in grieving that and that's been quite difficult for me, to say the least.

Yes it's very difficult. I hope you are not alone in the grieving, and I'm sorry about your son. Ugh. As for you and your h's individual experience, it's quite difficult indeed.

Sometimes I imagine h fishing/hunting and just cavalierly playing with OW. It used to be gut wrenching, but now it's painfully puzzling to me.

Thoughts of him totally blanking me out, erasing me and our family and children... How??

OR just fuming at me b/c I dared to ask for spousal support And or b/c he feels he had to vilify to justify. (OR whatever else his grievances are). Are we really totally unimportant to him? Am I? Who knows?

I accept that he is more important to HIM than me or our family. That is self evident.

I now think I stayed with h for years based on his potential as a h, which makes me sad but wiser.

And Butterfly, I am Just sharing what I think and feel now.


I didn't even realize that until she passed and all of us shared the grief. It was enlightening. Another lesson from my beautiful friend.


Oh God, I'm so sorry Butterfly. I feel for you. I hope you know what I mean when I say I'm glad you were all sad. We lost our older dog 6 weeks after I moved back east & filed for Divorce. It was only shared by me and my kids.

She had 8 puppies & we kept one, thank God. (She's my buddy).

Sometimes we can be deeply touched by the kindness of strangers.
When she first got sick, I was still out in CA and I could not drive then (seizures) and h was off to the tundra.

An elderly uber driver carried my groceries into the house, & we both noticed my dog was "off". She just looked miserable. We both had a bad feeling. He carried my dog into the vet's office at 9 pm, and waited 2 hours for me and my dog. (Who does that for a stranger??)

It was touching and Bittersweet but still sweet. I'm proud of my kids for sticking together and being there for each other when she passed away. We were either face timing long distance or with her. (I think it was H's loss. )


As for the questions about not sharing the experience and things we all ask, here is some food for thought


Jack3beans (RIP) was a frequent poster here - and a truly wise, good man. Here are a few of his mantras that helped me, which may help you.:

*You can't get to the next chapter if you keep re-reading the last one.


*I hope the LBS realizes that many of the 'why' questions they absolutely think they have to have an answer to...they really do not. Everyone dies with unanswered questions, but that doesn't prevent us from living. Why should they?

In many cases the MLC/WAS answers are NOT good enough for the LBS anyway, so they keep digging, and damage any repairs that have been made.

Stop asking.

As for not working on yourself?

That is just sad. : )****


Life is usually all about how you handle Plan B. - Jack3Beans

Buttefly, I"m sorry about your cat. And I send you prayers and positive thoughts.

((( )))
_________________________
M: 57 H: 60
M: 35 yrs
S30,D28,D19
H solo - ALASKA, 2006
Piece 7/07
Retrovaille-M Restored 8/08

*2016*
H Alaska Again!
Groundhog Day
I File D 10/16
OW

Don't look back, it's not where you're going

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#2756255 - 08/12/17 06:02 PM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: 25yearsmlc]
Treasur Offline
Member

Registered: 06/09/16
Posts: 388
Loc: UK
Dearest Buttrfly

I get that feeling of grieving alone, I do. Implied in the pain of it is a belief I suppose that grief is validated by being shared and witnessed, like at a funeral. For our Ms, sometimes it feels as if we are the only people who turned up to the funeral?

But, first of all, it isn't true. Like for you, lots of people who loved both my H and me have been affected by what has happened. Lots of people have lost a small part of their way the world is and have been distressed by it.

It also occurred to me that I am a daughter without parents now. My grief for them is no less because they are not here to share it, because there is no one else to share and grieve those family memories. My grief is no less true or valid because no one else is here who remembers the sound of my father reading to me or my mother holding me. Gosh, crying as I write that. My grief for those years of love is no less true if my H no longer remembers or values what it felt like to wake up together or the sound of his voice talking to me. Not one bit less real.
_________________________
Me: 53 H:38
T:20 M:14
BD ILYB etc 10/15, diagnosed with severe depression
PA with OW2 4/16
H filed 1/17


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#2756256 - 08/12/17 06:16 PM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: Treasur]
25yearsmlc Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/06
Posts: 12722
Loc: CA- now East coast
treasur/butterfly


my mom's passing away anniversary was wednesday and the wedding anniversary was tuesday.

You are right about the funerals and divorces being alike, yet not being recognized the same way.

At funerals, there are rituals (and people bring food). There'a a feeling of rejection in divorce and grief is not seen the same way.

Some divorced friends took me out for dinner and had a cake saying "happy freeversary" and though I was not really "game" with the cake's wording, I appreciated their effort.

As for missing our parents, yeah, I hear you.

You lose your role as daughter from death and your role as wife from the divorce (& if your kids are off at school, your role as mother is diminished ).

Not easy at all.
_________________________
M: 57 H: 60
M: 35 yrs
S30,D28,D19
H solo - ALASKA, 2006
Piece 7/07
Retrovaille-M Restored 8/08

*2016*
H Alaska Again!
Groundhog Day
I File D 10/16
OW

Don't look back, it's not where you're going

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#2756257 - 08/12/17 07:24 PM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: 25yearsmlc]
Treasur Offline
Member

Registered: 06/09/16
Posts: 388
Loc: UK
I'm sorry 25 for the proximity of those dates. I think 'untidy' grief makes it hard to know how to put rituals around it that feel healing or for others to understand unless their life experience has some similarities.

Someone told me last year that the parts of me that are a daughter and a wife are still part of me, even if the places where those bits show up in my life have changed. And I think that's true, although I don't know what to do with those bits now and some of them hurt me. But when I see a little girl here on the beach with a head full of girls running towards her father, I know what that feels like. When I see someone else holding their husband's hand, I know what that feels like. All those bits are part of my own tapestry. I wouldn't be me right now in the same way without them.
_________________________
Me: 53 H:38
T:20 M:14
BD ILYB etc 10/15, diagnosed with severe depression
PA with OW2 4/16
H filed 1/17


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#2756258 - 08/12/17 07:24 PM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: Treasur]
Treasur Offline
Member

Registered: 06/09/16
Posts: 388
Loc: UK
girls=curls lol
_________________________
Me: 53 H:38
T:20 M:14
BD ILYB etc 10/15, diagnosed with severe depression
PA with OW2 4/16
H filed 1/17


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#2756291 - 08/13/17 08:56 AM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: Treasur]
25yearsmlc Offline
Member

Registered: 04/03/06
Posts: 12722
Loc: CA- now East coast
Originally Posted By: Treasur
girls=curls lol


yeah, you threw me there^^. I thought maybe it was a UK phrase. cool

Here's to getting unstuck & getting to the other side.

((( )))
_________________________
M: 57 H: 60
M: 35 yrs
S30,D28,D19
H solo - ALASKA, 2006
Piece 7/07
Retrovaille-M Restored 8/08

*2016*
H Alaska Again!
Groundhog Day
I File D 10/16
OW

Don't look back, it's not where you're going

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#2756302 - 08/13/17 10:59 AM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: 25yearsmlc]
bttrfly Online
Member

Registered: 06/22/15
Posts: 1686
Loc: Massachusetts
Hi 25 and Treasur thanks for popping by. Lots of food for thought.
I will endeavor to articulate what I've come to understand through this experience, so please bear with me.

I have always been someone who needed to understand something in order to process it. I have a very curious mind, and am a student of human nature. I am also a critical/analytical thinker.

Part of the process of getting through this has been trying to understand what I'm dealing with, for a number of reasons that have changed over time. In the beginning, I felt that if I understood what I was battling I could have a better shot at trying to save my family/marriage. If I could ruthlessly analyze this situation with brutal honesty I could accept the parts that were truly mine, no more and no less, and try to change what was causing damage to my marriage.

My perspective in this is that both sides contributed something to, as my exh put it, "the failure of our relationship."

I needed to go through this process of analysis, reflection, call it what you will, as part of what I've come to believe is the LBS journey. I'm not the same person I was when this started, and I'm still on my journey.

Over time other reasons have come into being, and those reasons are related to taking the time to ponder what it is I wanted/what was most important to me as our mediator suggested while we were working out our divorce agreement. .

Having a relationship where we could co-parent to the best of our abilities was paramount to me. Second was having a relationship that parted with as much loving kindness on both sides as possible, for our sakes as much as for our son's.

My exh's actions have infuriated me, bewildered me at times, shocked/stunned me and made me extremely sad. Saying that they've left me devastated would be an understatement. That being said, I've spent more than half my life with this man. This relationship is the single most important relationship I've had with anyone other than my parents. This relationship gave birth to a child who deserves two parents who can work together for his best and highest good, even if we cannot live together any longer as man and wife, and I will continue to work hard so that we can at least do that much for our son.

My exh has told me on more than one occasion that he loves me. I truly believe he does. I also love him. When I last questioned him about this over a year ago he said, "How could I not?" Indeed.

I love him but I'm not interested in living the way we used to. Neither is he. On this we agree completely.

One other thing that was a guiding principle for me in this is that it's extremely important to me that my son look back at this with the perspective that I behaved with integrity, with respect for myself, for what we did have in our marriage and for my exh as a person separate from his MLC behavior. It's become even more important to me that I am able to look back on this time in my life and have the same perspective I want my son to have.

If I strip away my own bitterness, hurt, anger, confusion, disappointment, rejection, feelings of abandonment etc., I can say with honesty that I believe underneath the depression, the MLC behaviors, the fatalism, etc. he is grieving. He is doing it differently than me, but he is grieving. We've all read enough accounts from people out of the MLC tunnel to know a glimmer of their process.

Jack3Beans was a remarkable and wise man. I read his posts avidly. You are not the first person to say stop looking back.

For me, I feel that I need to understand this as much as I possibly can so I can move forward. So that I don't repeat these mistakes. So that this has it's proper context in my life rather than being a blight on the rest of my life.

There is a difference between adding to the suffering by re-living it and coming to terms with what happened, my part, my errors, feeling the hurt and the loss so I can move on without repeating the mistakes. I do not want to ever go through this again. The statistic that 65% of second marriages end in divorce is a sobering one to me.

Sometimes the pain of feeling this becomes too much and I need to retreat behind analyzing and fierce compassion. I'm aware. I'm working on it.

There has to be a mental shift for each of us between accepting the loss and feeling the grief. There is a fundamental difference between loss and grief. Navigating this isn't linear, nor is it necessarily without backsliding on occasion. Loss is defined as the action or state of not having or keeping something any more. Grief's definition is a multifaceted response to loss, particularly to the loss of someone or something that has died, to which a bond or affection was formed.

I've been working on separating the loss from the grief response. There's much healing to be found in that separation.

25, I'm very sorry for the anniversaries, and that they are stacked like that. {{{{{{{hugs}}}}}}}

Just to clarify - my cat and dog are fine. I volunteer at an endangered species education center near me. My favorite wolf passed on Wednesday. She was remarkable, and the saddest part to me, selfishly, is that for the first time last Sunday I was allowed to sit between the fences with her for an hour, just the two of us. She kept coming to me and finally kissed my hands through the fence, several times. I cannot tell you how profoundly she touched me in the two months I've been working there, nor how much her trust and love meant to me. Several people who know her well told me last Sunday that when she loves someone it's forever and that she definitely loved me.

I'm processing the loss, as she had a very big personality. My grief response is sadness, gratitude for the time I had with her and her trust and love, and a sense of humbleness that she did trust and love me, that we did develop a bond. I'm so grateful she passed on her own terms, like she lived her life. She took a nap in her favorite spot and didn't wake up. We should all be so lucky. I will never ever forget her.

Forgive me 25, but I'm not understanding the "not working on yourself" comment. I think you mean my exh? I think what's really sad is that in his despair/depression and overwhelm, he honestly believes that there is nothing to be done to change it. He thinks he has to be ... what's the best word? crippled comes to my mind. He truly on a deep level is afraid and believes that he will be forever crippled by the damage caused by his parents.

That is so heartbreaking to me. They stole his childhood. They don't have a right to any more of his life, BUT - that's not my call. That's not my battle. I've come to believe that's his and for anyone else to try to fight it would be the height of disrespect.

Originally Posted By: Treasur
Someone told me last year that the parts of me that are a daughter and a wife are still part of me, even if the places where those bits show up in my life have changed. And I think that's true, although I don't know what to do with those bits now and some of them hurt me. But when I see a little girl here on the beach with a head full of girls running towards her father, I know what that feels like. When I see someone else holding their husband's hand, I know what that feels like. All those bits are part of my own tapestry. I wouldn't be me right now in the same way without them.


I'm sorry for the loss of your parents. Yes, you are still all of those parts. The loss of your parents and our marriages does not diminish what we were and remain. Sometimes it's hard to hold, but it's still there is the whole point, I think. Ironically, my exh just called to discuss our son. I needed to bring something to his attention so he could address it directly with our boy. I appreciated his perspective, let him know that and he will handle it from here. It was something important or I wouldn't have contacted exh. This much he knows, as I do not contact him at all outside of matters relating to our son.

----

I continue in my GAL activities.

I continue to do things outside of my comfort zone. Some of those things are becoming more comfortable for me to participate in, some not so much. My confidence is growing in some areas and it's nice to see that.

I've met some new people in my GAL activities; some of them are men. I find that I am compiling a mental checklist of the traits I find attractive and desirable in a potential partner. I take it this is a positive sign that I'm healing. So far what I've got is that he has to love music, although doesn't necessarily need to be a musician, has to have some artistic traits, intelligence, sense of humor, sense of gratitude and compassion, a strong work ethic, a sense of fun and also the ability to enjoy quiet times together. He has to have a lot of self respect and respect for others. It's an evolving list. I meant someone two days ago who got me thinking more about this. Last night I met someone who embodied some traits I hadn't thought of before and they are also now on the list. I'm not necessarily interested in these people so much as I'm getting much clearer about what it is I want in a partner down the road.

Tomorrow I will work part of the day then go out to have a family reunion on my dad's side where we will celebrate an auntie's 95th birthday. I will see some folks I haven't seen in years. It will be an interesting day.

That's it, sorry for the length but I guess I had some thoughts I really wanted to share vis a vis 25 and Treasur's posts, as this is much of what I've been working on internally lately.
_________________________
M 20+ T25+
BD April 6, 2015
D Final 12/21/16

"If you focus on the hurt, you will continue to suffer. If you focus on the lesson you will continue to grow."


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#2756315 - 08/13/17 12:14 PM Re: Putting it into Practice [Re: bttrfly]
OwnIt Offline
Member

Registered: 03/16/17
Posts: 838
Loc:
Love your processing. My list is short. Kind heart.
_________________________
M 25 years
EA 6-12/11
ILYBINILWY 11/13
BD 1/16 PA w/OW1 (6/13-1/17)
Sep 10/16
OW2 as of 3/17

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