At this point I guess we are "rugsweeping" though sometimes I feel like it's just making the best of a bad situation. We can't communicate without fighting, there is a huge amount of resentment on both sides about many things, and I'm trying to just move to a new place in my head where I don't worry about what he thinks of me.
I want to keep the peace. I want our children to feel secure. I don't think those are bad things but I also feel so muddled. I've tried so hard and so many times to "save" our marriage but I can't do it alone. Now I feel like if I try again, or if he pretends like he is going to try again, it will just be too much for me. If I just let go now, it won't hurt so much anymore.
Once a long time ago I thought that marriage would be love and partnership and friendship and fighting and making up and being a team. I'm sure it is for some people - but maybe for some it's just a good arrangement for raising a family.
I have read too many romantic books and seen too many romantic movies.
This is super rambling I know - I can't seem to pull my thoughts together.
I look at couples differently now. I wonder if one of them has cheated on the other. I wonder how happy they actually are. Outside appearances are definitely deceiving. From talking to a few friends over the last couple of years, I realize now how many marriages are not the happy, fairytale relationships they appear to be. Anyone looking at WH and I would assume we are happily married. I used to think that marriage was a great insitution. Reality is sad and disallusioning.
What I read is that you either fight or you suppress a desire to fight. My bet is that your kids either notice or blind themselves to the tension. I'm not sure you're doing your kids a favor.
Is MC an option?
ETA - Yikes! This question has given me some insight into my experience that I had stopped looking for, since I figured I'd never get it. Thanks!
[This message edited by sisoon at 10:42 AM, July 9th (Tuesday)]
I think that he thought he loved me when we got married. But he has told me in the past that he just married me because he felt a lot of pressure that it was what we were supposed to do next. He has since said that's not true, but it's hard to just forget all the times he said it was true. And he often acts like he just doesn't like me very much, so it's hard to imagine he's madly in love.
Sisoon - MC is hard right now. Money is tight and finding childcare and time and all that is tough. Plus, I have brought it up multiple times and he doesn't show much interest. We also have a lot of books we are supposed to read "together" but he doesn't show much interest there either.
I don't know that we are either fighting or trying not to fight, though you made me think about that. I know my kids pick up on a lot of tension, so I bury my bad feelings pretty deep inside. I can tell when they are feeling it - they each have little quirks that give it away. When I'm trying to keep the peace, I'm truly trying to FEEL better, not just pretend to feel better. Sometimes it's hard and it comes out. Other times its easier to ignore our past and pretend that nothing has gone wrong.
I don't know that it's the best for my kids to think of marriage this way, but it's not just my marriage. It's all marriage. I just don't see it the same way anymore. Not my parents', not his parents' not my friends'.
All I know is I can't even think about being apart from my kids. Whenever I hear about anyone sharing custody and making custody arrangements I know I couldn't do it. It's selfish really. I don't want to give them up, even part time. That sounds very cold and calculated, but also I really do think that we are giving them a more stable home like this, even if we aren't really "happy."
Everything it takes to maintain a life like this does not come naturally to me. I'm not a rug sweeper, I don't avoid conflict, I don't hide my emotions, and after 5 years have completely given up trying to learn compartmentalization. Attempting all of this for so long has just left me exhausted. Exhausted on so many levels, in so many ways and so completely that I'm done trying any longer.
I want, need, a partner. Life and marriage are so hard even when an affair isn't part of it. I'm tired of facing it all alone. I have no one to share my burdens with, and no one to share the triumphs with either :(
MC is pointless. My husband is not a stupid man, and we're way past the fog stage. We have 5 years of dysfunction behind us, 5 years of proof that his way doesn't work. He's seen the destruction of his choices (post A), he's read books. In essence, he knows the right steps, knows the right path...he doesn't do it because he doesn't want to. There are a million reasons I'm sure for that choice (not that he shares them with me), but in the end it's still the choice he's made, and the one I have to live with.
Hugs to you (((hurt314))). Sorry I don't have any words of advice. Just wanted you to know you're not alone.
“I don't want to get to the end of my life and find that I have just lived the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well." ~ Diane Ackerman
I think we are twins separated at birth.....and you are married to my husband's twin.
It's frightening....He confessed to me on February 13, 2008.
We've been struggling ever since.
My heart breaks for you and for myself.
[This message edited by Lost&Hurt at 7:14 AM, July 15th (Monday)]
Notmetoo2011 - I feel exactly like that too
That is how I think and feel most days anyway!
IMHO, there is nothing wrong with the institution of marriage and family if the people within the marriages/families respect each other without abusing one another.
My only experience in marriage has been with a selfish partner!
So I am cynical in my thoughts on marriage..
In the aftermath of WH's stupid decisions that ruined our lives, I am exhausted..
Now I feel like marriage is a form of prison..
A future of having to consider a spouse's needs in everything that I do or plan to do seems stifling..
[This message edited by doggiediva at 9:05 AM, July 15th (Monday)]
I have done EVERYTHING I know to help us heal - set up counseling, read books together, etc., etc., etc. But it is always me.
My husband doesn't cheat any more. But there is no relationship. NO intimacy - of any kind.
I, too, believe he is not the man I thought he was. He told me he always dreamed of having a wife and family. He was / is severely disabled, and when I look back, I think I was someone he thought - "I will never be able to get anyone else - she will do."
My husband is reading "How to Help your Partner Heal after your Affair" now, but he doesn't speak about it, and nothing has changed.
Its not going to.
I will not be vanquished. Rose Kennedy
If I could fake it every day he'd be perfectly happy. I believe he loves me in the only way he knows how, but it's not enough for me. The kind of love I need, well that kind of love would never be OK asking me to do this to myself. It would never ask me to sacrifice myself for them. It would never ask me to (figuratively) kill myself, hate myself enough, lower my standards so much or murder my self worth to this point...and all to just make their life easier. Real love and respect wouldn't ask me to be silent when I'm in pain, to hide my tears so they don't have to face that their choices did this to me, to us, so they don't have to feel bad.
I've given up the dream that I'll wake up to find he's undergone a lobotomy, that my Warty Toad has transformed into a Smiling Tree Frog!
He's not going to voluntarily read books, and then want to talk about them! He's not going to book an appointment with a counselor, he's not going to initiate a heart-to-heart, he's not going to surf around on SI, much less create an account, because he made a mistake, he's sorry, he won't do it again...end of story.
He was apparently abducted by aliens for months, or maybe it was an out of body experience like none other. Nothing led up to it, he doesn't still have A behaviors, he knows how to communicate and his coping skills are top notch. He doesn't know why he did it, but he's sure positive he won't do it again. Can't remember one.single.detail, and can't seem to grasp why I just won't swallow that sh*t sandwich, and wear happy face while I do it. Be happy, don’t talk about anything uncomfortable (especially the affair!), go out and have fun, take care of them, and of course lots and lots of good sex…ah, all is good in their world!
He knows I won’t leave. He knows I want to be happy and I’m the type to put in as much effort as possible (for both of us). He uses this against me, he’ll play good and appease for awhile. Read ‘How to Help Your Spouse…’ but of course stopped as soon as looked happy enough. Picks it back up whenever he feels a bad episode coming. He’s never talked about the book and obviously hasn’t followed one piece of advice. He also lives in a very comfortable world knowing I won’t go anywhere. He’s able to get away with a lot, cause come on, what am I really going to do about it?
I’ve been married/divorced with a child. That situation was the definition of dysfunctional. I honestly thought I knew what I was getting myself into this time, I mean, this man was NOTHING like my ex, how bad could it be? 4 more kids later… I know exactly what divorce means, I have first hand knowledge how horrible custody arrangements can go, I know how hard being a single parent is. I cannot in wildest imagination see a path to do that now. 5 kids, one grandchild, out of the workplace for over 8 years, mountains of debt…yeah, not going to happen, at least not before the youngest is in school and the oldest and grandbaby are on their own. God, how did I let myself get into this situation, at just 37 years old?!?
If for whatever reason I ever did get out, I can say with just about 100% conviction, I would never marry again. Not saying I wouldn’t attempt to find someone and be happy, but I wouldn’t marry. I would never be financially reliant on anyone ever again. I would never put myself into a situation where I felt trapped ever again.
make a list, read it with your spouse.
This is your LIFE!!! The only one we get. You are responsible for your happiness. What happens when your children are grown and gone?
Lately, I have been triggering a lot! It's A season for me - 1 year ago this time.
My WH has never confessed as well. And I never had any "proof".
We have a child and I completely understand you not wanting to share time. I need my daughter. I need to know she's safe ALL the time. I'm selfish in this sense as well.
Fool me once - Shame on you. Fool me twice - pack your shit and get out.
What would it take for me to have the happy marriage that I want? Honestly: For me to be married to someone else.
I only have control over me. I have zero control over him (obviously). Since he can't or won't do the things I need, then there just isn't a damn thing I can do about that.
To care for my daughter, I worked a shit ton of hours, including the awful ones she spent with her dad. I had no life, it was lonely and exhausting. I wasn't living with a heavy drinker, sporadically using drugs, and spending all of my money. She wasn't growing up in that environment, all good things. I did however have to share custody with said loser, still had to have at least a certain amount of interaction with loser and his new crazy wife. I was better off out, but wouldn't say I was happy, not by a long shot.
Current situation, I have 4 little boys, my oldest and her baby girl. I am partially responsible for a lot of innocent little people. As bad as I make my husband sound here (again, I was venting), he has many great qualities as well. Unless something drastic happens, there is no way in hell I'm going to pack myself and all of these people up and leave. We are not in a position for either of us to keep/stay in the house. There is also ZERO chance of us affording a place that doesn't have us living on top of each other, literally. And even less of a chance of their father pulling off getting a place that any child in their right mind would want to be.
As much as I love myself, and I really do, I love my kids. And I don't even hate my husband. If it came down to having two homes, that's exactly what I'd want. Two HOMES, where there was some chance at living normally and at least slightly comfortably.
For now, I have decided that offering my kids two parents in one home is the way to go, our baby deserves the right to form a real relationship with his dad (and I’ll do this as long as I can maintain it a happy home FOR THEM). My parents divorced, no ones life was horrible before, they seriously could have maintained, and my dad wanted to. My mom wasn’t happy, so she decided to divorce and find a way to make herself happy. (And of course there’s a whole story there I won’t bore anyone with). I will not be my mother. Every situation is different, but this was mine, this is mine. And for now I do believe it’s in their best interest for me to stay. I’m not a martyr, I’m not sacrificing myself, just weighing the pros and cons and for now this is my choice.
In the meantime… I am severely over worked with kids, but I find a decent amount of time for myself as well. I’m working on becoming a healthier person, with my own life. I do only have one life to live, and I won’t look back and call it a great life if my kids get hurt. While he may have had the ultimate control on what starting this destruction, I have total control on how I handle it.
Who knows, maybe he’ll grow up, grow a pair and man up…miracles do sometimes happen
I wouldn't say that I'm in "limbo" or even terribly unhappy all of the time.
I'm fairly happy, I would say, but that doesn't come from my marriage. That's what I mean when I say my thoughts and beliefs about marriage have changed.
I make my own happiness in other ways, and with my children.
When we don't talk about the things that are bad between us, our partnership is fine. We "get along" fine. But I don't feel like he cares about me or our marriage in the way that I used to think spouses should.