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Hello all..........Itís been a while since Iíve posted, but I have been reading/keeping up pretty consistently on everyoneís threads. Iíve been having some thoughts recently and thought I would reach out for some advice.
To catch everyone up on my sitch ....... BD was November 2015. Kicked him out the day I found out. I filed for divorce May 2016, but he never signed the papers. We ended up going to an infidelity retreat in June 2016. Things were good for about six weeks and then he panicked and left. Did not really speak with him or have much contact with him until February 2017 when I decided to sell our home. During that time he was very helpful with trying to get the home ready.
We actually reconnected and decided to work on things because he had been to a self help forum known as Landmark Forum and he knew there was things that he needed to make better between the two of us. We saw each other pretty regularly up until November 2017 when he asked me to move in with him in his new place. Things were going well for a couple months and then around February 2018 he said he didnít know if he could continue to move forward with things between the two of us because I did not want to have a relationship with his parents. They had always been a big issue in our marriage because even though he was a grown man he still couldnít make a decision without consulting with them first.
I moved into the spare room around that time and basically stayed there until I moved out in November 2018. Unfortunately one of our two dogs got sick rather quickly and passed away in November 2018. H did not handle this well at all! She was diagnosed with cancer, and we had decided the best thing would be to put her to sleep. He had a very difficult time with the news and unfortunately he held onto her longer than what was probably in her best interest and in my eyes she may have suffered when she didnít need to. We eventually had to put her to sleep.
The very next day after we put her to sleep, he said he was having a difficult time working on himself with me being in the house so he asked me to leave. He had been going to see and IC weekly. So I packed my things and I took our remaining dog with me and moved into a hotel for six weeks. I ended up finding a place to stay and that is where me and my dog are currently living.
H and I do not speak. We have probably had two conversations on the telephone and a handful of text messages, which usually involve the dog, since I moved out.
I donít really know much about his life, but I do know he continues to spend money he really doesnít have. As part of an agreement we made when I first found out about his cheating, I would keep him on my health insurance plan and he pays my car insurance and my cell phone bill. I still have access to his banking account so I am able to see how much money he has, and how much he has racked up on his credit card.
Iíve tried to GAL as best as I can, probably could do better. Iíve taken several trips with the dogs, and on my own. Spent time with my family. Working way too much though!!
I found myself wondering when is it time to give up? We donít have a relationship, we donít communicate, the only thing we share is the same last name. I told him the last time I spoke with him that I didnít deserve to be treated how he was treating me and that moving forward I would not be contacting him any further. He reached out to me after that to spend time with the dog. He kept him for a couple days, and when I picked him up, he sent me a very long text message thanking me for letting him spend time with him and said that he would like to do that regularly if it was OK with me. He has not reached out since that time and that was the end of January. I have since learned that he has spent over $1000 to get a new puppy.
I found myself needing to come here because I remember so many times reading how important it was to come to the board first and asked for opinions or advice before doing something. And, since I felt like I was going to either pick up the phone and call him or send him a nasty email, and I didnít want to do that, I we came here instead.
Iím looking for advice, opinions, 2x4s or whatever anyone thinks will help.
Can't remember if you've been back since I changed my username. Hope you remember who this is. You've asked for 2x4s so here goes. I think you've always had a lot of anger that you were never able to set aside (parents, spending, usual stuff). I think that "reconnection" was doomed from the beginning, and that you couldn't let go of the anger toward his parents was a big red flag. They are his parents. I realize that you think they are too involved. But they are his parents. I think it is best that you have moved out again.
There is a type of couples counseling called discernment counseling, that I think is designed to help people who are ambivalent about divorce, which you seem to be. I think you should find a counselor who does this kind of work, and go yourself and see if you can resolve why it is that you are unable to let go, when you weren't able to put in the crappy work of taking one of these people back (reading Gordie or BlueWave's threads would be good for you on this point). Maybe you can come to your own conclusion of whether there is a world in which you want to be married to him.
I think you must still have feelings for him, but if you can't get past the anger or the need to mother/judge him, then it is probably not a workable thing. I don't think these people come back fully cooked and better than ever.
You've been through a lot. You don't have to take this guy back. Try to find out what YOU want and if it is him, try to find some help on developing some ways to deal with your anger.
There is no question that I have anger issues when it comes to everything that has been going on for the last 3+ years. Iíve been working on that one day at a time. I have days when I deal with it better than others.
During the last conversation with H, I let him know that I would not be the one who files for divorce. He knew from the very beginning that I did not want a divorce. I was willing to work on things, those things also included things within myself, not just with the marriage.
I can see were someone would think I was ambivalent in regard to divorce.... but iím not sure that that is a bad thing? During the last conversation H and I had he mentioned to me that he had gone to see a divorce lawyer, but did not have plans to file for divorce. He stated that he ďwas just seeing what his options were. ď
It may seem that I donít want my H to have a relationship with his parents but like you said those are his parents, and I donít expect him to choose me over them. I donít want his parents to be an issue, but in my mind, when things were going well between the two of us H would have a way of bringing up the subject of the strained relationship. It was like he was unable to move forward unless that part was resolved first.I wanted us to focus on making the two of us stronger and then tackling the parent issue at a later time.
I have read BluWave and Gordieís thread, and admire them for their patience, good heart and ability to be able see things from a different perspective.
I'm sorry you are feeling frustrated and feel you may do something you later regret. It is wise and healthy to bounce your thoughts around here amongst your peers, before taking action.
Looking back on my own situation and others I have followed in that time, I have learned that often when we FEEL that we MUST do something, that it is often not the right thing to do. Often it is fuelled by negative emotions/feelings that we do not control and decisions taken in that mindframe are often a reaction as opposed to a decision congruent with your inner self.
Ye are separated already, so I wonder what is it you cannot do now that you need to give up on him to do. Apart from meeting someone else (which you do not seem near ready for), you can live the life you want to live. Concentrate on that. Take a long look at how you are living and concentrate on taking the steps needed to make it AWESOME.
If you manage that, you are in a perfect position whether reconciliation happens or not. If H wants to D (or you decide to yourself), you have already a great life in place so you can continue to thrive. On the other hand you thriving now could help ye reconnect as H may see you are not just waiting around for his royal decision. Plus an active happier you is more attractive, so indirectly could influence him.
However I would be sure that your finances are well in order to not be affected by his overspending. Go down the legal front if necessary.
As for your stance on D, I believe maybe henceforth, you should remain silent (to H) on being against it and wanting to work on M. Maybe even offhandedly state being open to it or maybe it being for the best, BUT don't push it or initiate it. Let him do the work. He has already seen someone and doesn't seem convinced it is the way to go. Unfortunately that doesn't mean he is reconsidering, but for whatever his reason he isn't ready to D.
You can always come back and rethink this yourself. It is often said here that if you ask the question, if it is time to D/give up, you are not there yet. That makes sense to me. I believe when it is time, you will know.
Finally a brief word about the issue with his parents. It does seem frustrating. But you said you wanted to work on it after ye were better. If you are willing to do that later, why not now? For him it is a barrier. He may well find another one if that was resolved but still. Matbe look deeper into the issue and figure out what exactly is the problem for you and then identify what can resolve those issues for you. If you cannot change a situation, you are forced to change yourself - Gandi.
To get to the root of your issues, keep asking yourself why. Why does it bother me so much? When you answer that, reask why. Continue until the bare truth is revealed. This exercise can be helpful, but takes effort and honesty.
But again, being separated, his parents and the related issues are surely not an issue for the moment. I would still think about it but no need to stress. I would follow OneArts advice about working on resentment and anger. Those will not serve you well
Hope some of that is helpful
Last edited by roist; 03/15/1908:27 AM.
R 23 years M 12 years S9 & S11 Working on it alone since Oct 2014 M in trouble a lot earlier (~2 years) Feb 2016. 1st R chat in a yr. Next R chat Aug'17 Still together
You've been given very good advice from the posters.
I'm sorry things didn't work out w/your moving back in. Reconnection takes a lot of time and patience. It's evident that he's not any where near reconnecting and working on the marriage. It's good that you and your dog moved out. Maybe it's time for you to rethink the finances and allow him to take care of his own health insurance, etc. I know you and your h agreed on how the bills would be paid, but there comes a time when you have to cut the apron strings that he is relying on and allow him to learn how to walk on his own and be accountable for all of his bills. To him, in his frame of mind, he knows that he can rely on you to be there, i.e., as a mother figure.
The racking up of the credit card tells me that he's not learned the lessons that he needed to learn and eventually, he will meet the credit card limit and then what? Will he get another card or file for bankruptcy? You know him better than we do, but I would seriously consider, at this time, of getting all of my bills in my name and paying for them myself. He will eventually need money to pay his credit card bills and hopefully will not leave you hanging in the wind on your bills.
I realize that things might not have been great w/his parents in the picture, but when it comes to family, blood is thicker than water and generally, MLCers will tend to go with the option that is the easiest for them. I can't help but wonder is there something else going on w/him and his parents and he is using that as an excuse to detach from you. They will always be front and center in his life and maybe it's time for you to think about what you really want. Do you want his parents to be the ghosts in the room each and every day that you are w/him? Do you want him to feel like he has to choose between you and his parents? Have you spoken to his parents at all to get a better understanding of what needs to take place in order to have peace and harmony?
Just keep in mind, if the situation works itself out w/his parents, he may very well come up w/another excuse not to reconcile. They tend to find more and more excuses as we tackle each issue and it becomes very frustrating.
I agree w/the posters on working on your anger and resentment issues. These issues take up a lot of time and energy from a person who has these feelings. Continue to work on you, find ways to make yourself happy w/o him in the picture for the time being. If, and when, the time comes, you will know when to walk completely away. But, I do not think you are there yet.
Remember, this is not a sprint, it's a marathon and you can't rush the process. If you truly want to find a way to reconcile, then you have to leave him be to figure things out for himself. Going to self help seminars, etc., will not fix his issues until he's ready to truly do the heavy lifting and look within and do the work.
SKM, I don't think ambivalence is bad (if it is I'm probably a lot more guilty than you).
1. You say you won't be contacting him anymore and you guys don't talk; 2. You say you want to know when it is time to give up; 3. You say you won't be the one to file; and 4. You say you are ambivalent about divorce.
I think you look like someone who doesn't want to try (which is understandable), or maybe doesn't want to try that same way again, and doesn't want to give up (which is also understandable). What is left other than limbo if neither of you can make a move to the other. I think he made a move. I think it may be your turn. (But of course all that matters at the end of the day is what you think).
I wonder what would happen if you and your H only had a calling or texting or friendly relationship for a while (with you initiating sometimes despite your pronouncement). Seems like he doesn't want to be divorced either. Seems like he's at least had a first awakening and walked quite a way towards you. Seems like maybe he was going to use the remaining dog as a bridge, but then maybe got lonely, or it felt insurmountable, and got the new dog.
I think were it me I would stop making pronouncements to him (I won't contact you again) and just try to see if you guys can be friends again. Is he someone you want to be friends with? What if you had the opportunity to figure that out without the pressure of living together? What if you called him up and asked how it was going with the new dog or asked if he wanted the new dog to meet the old dog? And avoided relationship talks at all cost.
You are at a different stage than a lot of folks here. I wouldn't call that an early or false reconciliation in the traditional sense; I think it was just too early for your anger and his lack of remorse. Too much too soon. What would a 180 for your situation look like? How can you resolve your own ambivalence one way or another?
Roist, Job and OneArtÖ...thank you for the replies.
I made a decision to reach out to H on Friday to see if he would be interested in going to the park with me and the dog. He did not reply so I reached out again today and said "never heard back form you, we are headed to the park and would love to see you." He replied and said he would meet us there. Today, we meet and there was awkwardness (on his part) when we arrived. I said hello first and he did not reply, not a great feeling to not have him say hello back. I later asked him if he heard me and he said he did and didn't know why he didn't say anything back.
He greeted the dog and we started off to the park. The conversation of the new dog came up quickly and he said the reason he did not tell me was because he had been struggling whether it was the right thing to do. He didn't want it to seem like he was replacing the one that passed away. He has been lonely in his house. He talked quite a bit, mostly about himself and his new dog that is coming, and how he is currently dog sitting. He spoke about his work and said that he was glad I asked him to come out to meet them cause he knew we needed to talk about 'us." I mentioned that my intent was not for us to speak about us our marriage or lack there of, and that I simple wanted today to be about him spending time with the dog and seeing how he was. Unfortunately that did not last long...Ö.
He blamed me for why he has not reached out to see the dog. When he said that I told him that upsets me because I didn't feel like it was up to me whether he saw the dog or not. I could feel myself getting angry so I told him to please leave me alone for a little bit......and he did. He later came back and said he did not want me to think he was blaming me because he knows it is really about him. He said he still has a lot of fear when it comes to talking about things, mostly things that are uncomfortable to him. He said he is working on it as best he can. He then started talking about how he knows he still has a lot of work to do.
We continued to talk about him and how he is still living in fear of judgement and how others perceive him, and how his pride really does take over when he makes decisions. He said he the reason he waited so long to answer my text yesterday was because he wanted to make sure he was going to say the right thing.
Unfortunately his parents came up in conversation and he said he understands why I am upset about how they treated me but he feels like "at some point I need to let it go." He did ask me if I thought that the reason I did not get along with his parents was the reasons we continued to have issues and I said I did, and he said "it is one of the reasons."
Now this is when it got upsetting for me......he said the dreaded "I love you, but I'm not in love with you" statement OUCH!!!! I told him that I understand why he feels that way. I told him that neither one of use has really been honest about how we feel towards each other. I also said that I know I can be very difficult at times, and that I get angry and upset and say hurtful things......and I have no excuse for that. And, the only reason I do that is to make him feel bad.
He said no one can make him feel any worse about himself then him. He said everyday he thinks about what he did and how he treated me and the bad choices he made. He then said he wanted a divorce. I asked him why he wanted a divorce and he said he "wasn't happy and didn't want to be married anymore." I asked him if he thought getting a divorce would make him happy and he said "no, it makes me sad thinking about getting a divorce."
He then said he went to see lawyer and can not afford to pay the retainer fee. He then asked me if we needed a lawyer in order to get a divorce. I took that to mean he wanted us to do some sort of an online divorce. We don't have kids and we don't have community property any longer because I sold the house previously. THEN IT CAME......"and I think we should split all the money that is in the bank" ÖÖ...then the anger in me came out...not one of my better moments.
He does not have one dime of money in any sort of savings account and has never contributed to the current savings accounts. I also have a 401K, as well as an IRA and a different savings account that I opened after BD.
I told him that I did not want a divorce but would not stand in his way if he felt like he needed to proceed with one. I then said to him that I think that the both of us have not done the work needed to make this marriage work. I took FULL RESPONSIBILITY for my anger, frustration, resentment and any negative emotion that I had during our marriage as well as after BD and up until today. I also said I felt like he did not really want a divorce but didn't know what else to do and thinks that this is it.
I apologized for raising my voice and apologized for saying mean things to him. Hearing myself speak like that tells me I HAVE A LOT OF WORK TO DO!!!!!
Before we left he agreed to go to discernment counseling, and we both agreed to not to speak to anyone about what we spoke about today regarding the divorce.
I am so impressed by what you did. That took so much strength and character. Just the reaching out to him alone, and then realizing that you were overcome by anger and asking for time, apologizing for actions, and remaining true to what you want.
I think you have to let go of the divorce talk and the ILB talk and not dwell on them. I've read a lot of reconnection and reconciliation threads over the years. I think it takes a long, long time for the love to be able to come forward. It is not uncommon for them to repeat these things. When every interaction is an unpleasant and tough talk, it is hard to feel that feeling. You did your best not to go there, but it sounds like this stuff needed to be said. I'm sure he thinks he wants the divorce because he wants to stop hurting and he doesn't know what else to do. But you know it won't and deep down he probably knows it to.
I think you took a huge step in walking toward him, in acknowledging your issues, in addressing the elephant in the room (his parents). I think for discernment therapy they ask for a 6 month or year long commitment to the process. I wouldn't give it any less time than that. It seems that he is in a place that he can admit some things, and own up to things, as you can. I think if you can bring that honesty in your sessions, both for the bad feelings and the good ones, you guys will get a lot of the process.
I imagine it was hard and unpleasant at times, but you probably did more work on your marriage in that one conversation than in years' previous.
One Art......thank you for continuing to read long and for giving words of advice, well as things to continue to keep thinking about.
Yes, yesterday was unpleasant at times. I have replayed the conversations in my head over and over again. I know there were things I could have handled better, as well as not let my emotions get the best of me. I know that the patterns that I am using are not effective, and it is only up to me to break those patterns.
I was reading a particular chapter in the DR book today and something struck me.......I really just need to let go of the whole ďparent issue.Ē If I really sit and think about it they really should have no bearing on my relationship with H. They canít take back what they have said about me or told him to do to me, those are their issues/demons to deal with. And why they chose to think or act that way is not for me to try to figure out. I have continued to make it an issue by continuing to bring them up..... so Iím going to let it go.
I went back and looked at text messages H and I had exchanged during the time we were together the past year and we were in the same pattern that we were after initial BD. I also re-read posts that I had put here at that time, as well as replies from all of you, and if I would have just been able to open my mind I would have seen that what everyone was telling me was right. I can honestly say that he was tying harder than I was. But at that time I did not want to see what he was doing because I still wanted to ďplay the victim.Ē I wanted him to do all the heavy lifting and I felt like he owed it to me because of his cheating. Why couldnít I see all of that at the time?? Am I only seeing it now because I feel threatened by him saying he wants a divorce? I know I keep saying this, but I really truly feel he does not want a divorce, he just wants the pain to end, and he thinks that this is how it will.
Iím not going to reach out to him, because I know that will only push him further away. He said he would contact me, so I guess I will wait and see.
Iím planning on keeping myself busy this afternoon by spending time with friends for St. Patrickís Day. This should help me keep my mind off of things. I just hope they donít ask how things were going between me and H......but I sure they will.
SKM, I think you are in a different place than most. I don't think you are dealing with a runner in the tunnel (at least not too deeply in there). If he doesn't reach out soon, don't be shy about reaching out to him. You always have the excuse of the dog or discussing next steps.
You are doing some important work for you own healing. Keep it up. Read some books about getting over the affair and letting go of anger. There are a lot of good ones out there.
We all need a good solid dose of reality to shake us up every once in a while.