For arguments sake, did you even have a list of pro's?
Sure I did, sweetie. And tops on the list was that I got to be a sahm because ex was such a hard worker and a good provider. But I let that be his excuse for all sorts of horrible behavior, including him going off motorcycle racing because he had a responsibility to his team-mates, instead of staying home for his son's birthday party. My son is 21 now. He still remembers this. That his dad thought motorcycles and friends were more important than his son's birthday.
I'll admit, life was a lot easier for me and the kids than it would have been if I had gotten a divorce when the kids were little. So I do understand how hard this is. I also know just how easy it is to lose yourself in a situation like this.
Pretty pretty please, don't you ever ever feel
Like you're less than, less than perfect
I have always admired how you handled things. I guess I was almost hoping that he didn't bring ANYTHING to the table and that's why you were able to break from the cycle... although I know deep down that's never the case.
Yeah, I'm the posterchild for limbo here. I stay because there's some hope - a hope that's more rooted in fear and caution than truth.
Some of you have met Crazz and can attest to the fact that he's a genuinely nice guy.
I guess that it just scares me that I'm drawing more and more parallels to you, inconnu, and I know that the path you took was the right thing. I look down that road and I want to run and cry.
So instead of letting Crazz put motorcycles first, I "mom" him into being a good dad. Not sustainable.
I think we're going to try the new MC I have lined up in hopes that a 3rd party can steer him rather than me. Maybe that will give me more energy. At least while DD is little and I continue to sort things out.
For last year's words belong to last year's language
And next year's words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning. - T.S. Eliot
You need to consider what you are going to do next weekend when he does it again (not if, when). Perhaps march right up to him, say "You woke her up, now YOU need to put her back to sleep." and then leave the house. I think with this issue, he does not get it because there are no consequences for him. It appears he views DD's nap time as an inconvenience with the only consequence to him is that you fuss at him. And then he sulks but continues the same behavior. Because he does not understand why you fuss at him. If he has to deal with getting back to sleep and/or dealing with a cranky toddler who did not get her nap then maybe he will have a light bulb moment. He may be the type of person who learns best thru doing. So perhaps you you need to force him to do all the work associated with DD's nap until her learns WHY her nap time is sacred to you.
was there anything redeemable about him?
Of course there was. otherwise I wouldn't have fallen in love with him, married him, and had kids with him. He really was a hard worker, and I still feel very fortunate that I got to be a sahm for most of my boys' childhoods. If it weren't for the infidelity and ex leaving me for OW, I would have stayed married to him forever. I not only loved him, I was still in love with him at the time of the divorce. That's why it was such a devastating decision to make. But it was the right one, for me, where I was in my life.
So, redeemable qualities - ex is smart (except when he was a shit-for-brains stupid ass and cheated on me ), charming, good looking, can be funny, very mechanically inclined - I never had to worry about car repairs or maintenance. He did most of the yardwork. He has great taste in jewelry. He let me indulge in my love of books and reading. If I asked for something, he rarely told me no. I used to tell him he was a good guy, with just the right touch of bad boy in him. Little did I know, right?
But, he is also rather selfish, and passive-aggressive. And would much rather blame me for everything rather than take responsibility for his actions. He's a follower, not a leader, with low self-esteem, although he comes across (or used to) as confident.
We had years when things were not just good, they were great. He wasn't always an ass, and I wasn't always a bitch to him. But he made choices and kept secrets that had a devastating effect on the marriage.
I still hate what he did, and how he chose to end the marriage. But I don't hate him. He's not a bad person, he's just a broken one who doesn't want to change, so he took the easy way out.
You know, even with dealing with the infidelity, I don't think I've had a bad life. My marriage turned bad, I know that. It had a lot of potential, though. If we had put in the work and learned to communicate better much earlier on, I think the outcome could have been a lot different.
Sweetie, you have to do what is right for you, which includes what is right for your child, too. And if what's right for you now is continuing to try, then that's what you should do. I will say that I have not a doubt that I did everything I possibily could do to save my marriage. But one person can't save a marriage by themselves, especially one as damaged as mine ended up being.
And I don't see you being at that place yet. You still have hope, and if you ended the marriage now, you'd have regrets about not trying hard enough. So, try this new MC. See how it goes. And know that whatever you decide, you've got an SI army supporting you in that decision.
[This message edited by inconnu at 9:37 PM, October 27th (Sunday)]
These patterns sound oh so familiar to me.
I understand about being in Limbo. Honestly, I think divorce will happen for me eventually. I just need to figure out the kids and how to save up some money.
But it sounds like there still may be hope for you two. I hope there is, because yes ... looking down that road to separation is a lonely and scary feeling.
Currently in Limbo, possible R. WH says he wants R. I'm not convinced.
If you're not ready to make a decision, then don't make it. FWIW, when I looked to end my marriage I didn't do it until I knew that 10 years down the road I would be at peace with that decision. But at the same time, if the status quo isn't working, don't think you have to accept it. If there is going to be a change in his behaviour you can only point it out while you do what you can for your own part - it's Crazz who has to drive it.
I get it...I really do.
FWS was a really good guy to everyone outside of the marriage. He was well thought of in the community and did a lot of good things.
But all of this wasn't worth the tension and egg-shell walking that the kids and I did at home.
None of that was worth the decades of putting up with him acting the martyr before the kids were born and me putting up with it. In hindsight I should have left him then but I loved him and just clinched my jaws and endured.
Does Crazz have any real motivation to change his ways? Can he EVEN change?
Even after Dday, FWS just couldn't muster much empathy when it came to others and to me. By then I was so used to it that I learned to never count on any compassion from him and to find some way to comfort myself. And it's a crappy way to live a life.
Please don't live my life.
He can be sweet and vulnerable.
I think what I keep tripping up on is the "on purpose" factor. That and he acts like everything's fine when nothing has been resolved, and it makes me feel like I'm the crazy person.
He doesn't hit. He doesn't swear or yell. He does piles of laundry and dishes without being asked. He doesn't care how the money's spent, he will go to any restaurant I want.... I feel like I'm crazy when I'm freaking out because he is accidentally inconsiderate. It just happens a lot. A lot a lot. So because of that I give up everything else?
I'm not arguing with you. I'm arguing with me.
I honestly don't know what it's going to take for me to feel good about the path I choose.
Oh My God....that statement just broke my heart.
Sweetheart...back away from this thread for a couple of days and just think about what we've said.
My heart is breaking for you. And there's nothing I can do to help you.
As an insight into my brain, I'd like to point out that security in decisions I've made throughout my entire life is at about 20%. I'm a wishy-washy-waffler by nature, which does NOT help things here. It does make this frustratingly typical for me.
[This message edited by Jrazz at 9:10 PM, October 28th (Monday)]
I know this is a tough time for you. Is this a bump in the road, or a crash, or something else entirely?
Have some faith in yourself, J, and nurture yourself. You'll figure out the right next step for you.
First, what you are describing sounds to me more like an ongoing rocky road than a bump in the road. In that situation, the most important question I would have is "Is my husband on the road with me?Ē Is Crazz committed to your walking together on this road, and dealing with the pain of stumbling on these rocks for both of you? And does he have hope that he can face the pain of his issues and come to a different place? If he has no hope, he may be going down a different path, one of shame and hopelessness and using old coping mechanisms, that didnít work in the past and will not work now.
Second, the behavior and responses you described about the pumpkin patch day sound achingly like how I acted through most of my marriage, and still struggle with. The panic and sense of urgency about completing tasks, the blinders about how my behavior affected others, resenting being interrupted in a task that I was using to give me a sense of safety and control, not to mention the high from accomplishing goals that was my major source of pleasure and my inability to be playful and have fun (which just felt like danger to me) Ė these were some of the symptoms of the addiction of workaholism. I was (and am) also co-dependent, with a deep-seated belief that I am not OK and will never really be acceptable to others (or myself).
Third, there is help available. IC and MC for both FOO and current relationship/communication issues have been life-saving for me. The Workaholics Anonymous and Work-Anon websites can provide insight into the nature of that part of the issues, as well as ways to cope. As usual, take what you need and leave the rest. If Crazz has the degree of difficulty feeling empathy that you describe, that needs to be explored, for both of you. Are you saying it is biologically how his brain is wired, a matter of temperament, derived from childhood experiences and the ways of coping he developed from that? I myself have only been able to begin to understand my husbandís pain (as opposed to caring for him, caring about his pain, or feeling ashamed of causing that pain), when I could feel compassion for my own infant and child pain. I then didnít have to work to be sensitive Ė I just spontaneously felt compassion for his experience of being abandoned by me during my affair.
What I most want to say is that there is hope. If Crazz can tolerate the fear and pain (to me it feels like jumping off a cliff), he can change. If he doesnít do what is necessary to change, you can set limits and eventually detach. But you donít have to give up yet. I didnít know how to be present, and now sometimes I am. I was self-focused and had blinders on, and now I can sometimes sense what it really feels from my husbandís experience. Remember, (as others have posted), narcissism is part of the human condition, and all affairs are necessarily narcissistic. That doesnít mean that all of us waywards have NPD. And I think that personality disorders are curable too, if the person is aware that his/her behavior patterns are causing pain and wants to change. All this is what has been helpful for me. The two of you will have to work through what can be helpful to you.
Whatever you decide to do, now or later, I wish all of you the very best. Take care of yourself, and little by little I trust that you will be able to work out your path forward.
[This message edited by plainsong at 1:30 PM, October 29th (Tuesday)]
Your questions are excellent ones, but the crux of the matter is that I can't figure out what is going on with Crazz. He's always in firefight mode, as you observed, and I think he's the kind of person that would gladly bang his head against a wall and call it progress for the comfort of the consistency of activity. Is he willing to face his fears and do the work? I can't say, because I don't know how deeply that computes with him. I could ask him in simple terms, but he will not know how to construct and answer. That is just the way of our conversations. He doesn't know how he feels. His own opinions and emotions were emotionally beaten out of him as a child. You either agreed with his father or you were an idiot. Always.
He HAS made a lot of changes. He has definitely tried to work past engrained fears for the betterment of our family.
It's just that when these square-1 feeling things happen, I'm so scared/exhausted/disappointed and it's hard to picture facing the possibility that this Crazz can crop up at any time and nullify any feelings of hope or security I have.
Truthfully, these issues are largely well removed from anything involving the A. The formula is what causes disaster. His inconsideration, my either anger or sadness or both, his retreat and resentment. There is a true change today in that he does not run to alcohol or sex to make himself feel better. The rut is that I find myself day after day asking why I committed to someone who has glaring social issues that make me so upset. I have love and compassion for him - I hate that he doesn't know who he is. At the same time, I don't want to beat on him for the rest of our lives to be someone for ME. I feel guilty being unhappy with aspects of him that aren't...well, his FAULT.
We're trying to hire a new MC but he keeps travelling for work - it's the season. He has been faithfully going to IC but this lady is not digging anymore... I can tell. It has lapsed into "How was your week? Ok, well try to do better. Ok, see you next week." but it's not mine to say when he should try a new counselor. That has to be his decision.
I feel lost, but I feel like it's my fault. I knew he was like this. I'm know that I'm like this, and there are cognitive and ideological incompatabilities that are so glaring that I feel like a selfish idiot for bringing a child into this. I wouldn't trade her for anything in the world, but that doesn't mean that I don't feel badly for building a house of superficiality around her.
I think I got off track.... sorry.
I really appreciate you taking the time. These are things I need to keep hearing and programming in. I want to do the right thing, but I'm so confused.
Sisoon - you're right. Wishy-washy isn't the right word. What's the word for being critical of one's every move? THAT's me.
[This message edited by Jrazz at 1:42 PM, October 29th (Tuesday)]
D-Day, June 10, 2012
Sometimes we have to love ourselves more than we love others.
Jrazz.....I need to leave this thread because it's too personal and hurts me too much.
Good luck sweetie.