Originally Posted by unchien
Thanks everyone for checking in on my sitch. Work has picked up and I had the kids a lot recently, so haven't spent much time on the forums. I also haven't had much happen significantly. W and I are going to counseling next week so I expect to be posting again - this will be our first real discussion about next steps.

As for now, I'm treating my situation as a holding pattern. We are spending down money, but it's not the end of the world. And I feel like it would be unwise for me to start trying to press my W into discussions without a 3rd party mediator (or counselor) present.

So I spend a lot of time validating, letting little things slide, and mostly trying to keep a PMA and maintain friendliness. A couple weeks ago I slipped into some emotional discussions with her that did no good. I have a little voice of doubt telling me that I am being conflict avoidant right now, but for the most part I think this is the right approach. I know things will get tough when we start negotiating. I suspect she is also being conflict avoidant and enjoying the relative calm.

It's hard to avoid that knee-jerk defensive instinct, because she often implies that D is something that I wanted. There's really no point arguing, though. With a couple weeks hindsight now, I have some distance, and I realize it's just not worth my energy.

There was a situation with S7 last weekend that irritated me, where I thought my W was maybe playing a little emotional tug of war with him, but I took a step back and realized (a) it's possible that I was wrong about what happened; (b) I had no control over the situation; and (c) I am feeling closer to my kids post-separation, so I must be doing something right.

Good stuff, U. The holding pattern is brutal, so kudos to you for fighting through it.

Me: 37, WAW: 32
T: 7.5, M: 2.25
BD: 5/19/19, S: 6/21/19