Originally Posted by unchien
Journal ~

Something that's been bothering me is why I sometimes feel strong emotions when my W does or says things. Little jabs that I feel a need to defend.

At first I thought, well, this is a 15 year relationship. But I think I've accepted the fact our MR is over. I'm not hoping for reconciliation.

I think you answered your own question here.

As far as whether we've all dropped the rope fully - well then we wouldn't be on a forum called "Divorce Busting", would we? laugh

Have you read Manly Marriage Revival? I think it's a great secondary/companion read to DB - and more importantly it distinguishes some subtle differences between "alphas" and "leaders". Just a suggestion smile
Originally Posted by Unchien
Even though this person has more or less abandoned me emotionally for the past 2 years, labeled me with some awful terms, and taken zero responsibility for her contributions to the failure of our MR, I still feel like she has this power.

Re-read what you wrote here, U - and I think you'll start to get at the crux of what is bothering you.

Why do you feel your W emotionally abandoned you?
What did she do?
How did you react to what she did?
What life-changing or significant events happened during those 2-plus years on her end that caused her to view you differently from what she saw you as before?
How did you respond to those significant events?

Put yourself in her shoes, try to see yourself as she saw you during that time. I'm not talking about the hyper-sensitive reactions/interactions during that one incident near BD, or the letters or that kind of thing, but previously to that. List it out if it helps - doesn't even have to be here if you're worried about anonymity. Write it all down on paper if you like - every single little thing it could have been. I did it - it may help you too.

Originally Posted by Unchien

So my Aha insight, I hope, is, well, why should I care what my W thinks about my choices? Why does her opinion carry more weight than my own?

Because deep down (somewhere on some level) you still do want this to work out. Just like I (deep down) want mine to work out.
But we can't say that or think that because we both have to be prepared for any possible outcome. Spending too much time thinking about R would be for naught if it did not end up working out. So we keep ourselves occupied and protected - as we should.

Originally Posted by Unchien

My fear of a custody battle does influence this as well. But I do still feel the need to defend sometimes, when really I just need to shrug it off, do what I think is best according to my values, and let her deal with her own choices and emotions.

I probably shouldn't say anything here because I don't have kids. But i do have a ton of experience with fighting divorcing parents. So I'll keep it brief. Prioritize the needs and emotional well being of your kids when it comes to custody. That's all that matters.

You are a smart guy, U. You know as well as I do that the future isn't written in stone. None of my future predictions over the past 14 months has come 100 percent true. I would suspect yours have not either.

This is so tough but you're getting a lot stronger and you're thinking critically. Good to see you working on yourself and using the gift of time.

Take care man - stay strong smile