Thanks sisoon- this outlines it pretty clearly:
You're placing more value on your job than on your M. You know that, right? I don't care what the reasons are right now; what's important is knowing what you're doing... I think your gut is right about keeping your job, despite the possibility of seeing and even interacting with your ap. I also think your gut may be right in valuing your job over your M. But I think it's important for you to accept that you're at least awfully close to giving up your M before your job.
I am. As it stands, yes, I am valuing my job over my M.
As for the whole "dating" thing- H clarified later whether the S would be on the way to D or not. He'd rather just D than trial S.
Ugh. I hate this.
Talked to his mom last night. She was crying at the thought of losing me. We had a very frank discussion of my behavior and H's behavior around other women, comparisons, spending and entitlement and general expectations of emotional security. She's not from a background of overt abuse like I am, so I can appreciate how she is able to view things simply. She understands my incredible sensitivity around Brian's friendships with other women. She was surprised at how much Brian was comparing me to my one friend. Said that husbands are absolutely NOT to compare their wife to other women. That if he wanted to marry someone else, he should have married them. He married me and needs to value me.
She agreed that he needs to stop being "friends" with J if he wants this marriage to work. I told her about J telling H about her lack of sex life, how I saw that as inappropriate and fishing. She didn't think much of that- she has friends who are couple friends with them and they joke around about each other. I didn't agree with her viewpoint, but couldn't put my finger on why until today. I was thinking how I've never met J, I don't know her BF, we are NOT couple friends. We have couple friends C and V who we both love. C and V joke all the time about how much fun they have enjoying sex together and how much they still find each other to be sexy. I feel safe sharing all kinds of stuff with them. Because THEY'RE MARRIED, LOVE EACH OTHER DEEPLY, AND LOVE LAUGHING ABOUT HOW MUCH FUN IT IS TO HAVE SEX WITH YOUR SPOUSE. The exact opposite of two people not married to each other, opposite sex (and hetero), complaining about the lack of sex they have with their partner- who the other has NOT MET, let alone been friends with. Maybe she didn't understand the context. Hah. I love my mom in law, but she is rather naïve about some things.
We were talking about attitudes towards clothing, spending, lifestyle and keeping up with the Joneses. It's really remarkable how much we do have in common with our values. Values for choosing friends, values for what you invest in (memories, not stuff), mutual interests and enjoyments. It was really good to reconnect with her. And positive towards myself- I see the positive things I've admired about her within myself.
She said she sees how hard I'm working, how I've gone on meds, sought counselling and worked so hard on healing my wounds. She understands H will have trouble trusting me in the future because of what I did. She told me she forgives me for it and doesn't think it will happen again since I've worked so hard on it. She said that my dad in law has forgiven me too, even though it was harder for him since his almost-fiancée from college cheated on him the whole 5 years they were together. I thanked her, she's really kind. I told her it meant a lot to me since she could have cut ties with me and hated me for life, and no one would have blamed her. She's shown a lot of grace and mercy. I think I've judged her too harshly over the years. And I'm really sorry for that.
She made a good point- that I'm a very wounded creature from my upbringing and am liable to be too sensitive to others' opinion of me. She encouraged me to be stronger and stick up for myself. I needed to heal and be confident in myself so Brian's complaints wouldn't affect me so deeply. That Brian would have to either accept it and love me anyway, or deal. That there's things we don't like about our spouses and that's just the way it is in life.
So, since I have her encouragement and support, I don't feel so alone in this. It's the first time in a long time like I've felt like I have a mom. For those who don't know, my mom and I are estranged. Years of disrespect and outright abuse from her led me to go VERY low contact with her the past 3 years. My mom's emotional maturity level is about that of a 16 year old, so I really haven't had the guidance of an older wiser woman since... high school? So yeah, it was a good feeling being loved like that- unconditionally. And supported.
Which brings me to this:
My W & I have issues that started when we met in 1965. So far, we've decided to stay together despite those long-running differences. We make attempts to resolve them from time to time, but we know we've chosen to accept that they exist; we don't criticize each other for them. If the differences bothered us constantly, I think we would have D'ed. If I've read your H right, he doesn't seem to see any alternative but for you to change to satisfy his whims. He doesn't seem to see you as an independent being.
Acceptance is something we both have to work on. I have to accept that his priorities are keeping up with the Joneses and "self soothing" his anxieties by making everyone else around him into what he deems he needs. He has to accept that I cheated, am working in the same building as AP and NOT going back to that behavior again.
I'm going on the vacation, my mom in law and H both asked me to. Since I'm not walking into a situation where I'm going to have hostile in laws on top of a hurt and angry husband, I think I can bear it. I'm planning on taking my own time to myself for a long walk/run in the evening after kids are in bed. Hopefully H can take the opportunity for some good talks with his mom like I had with her. I'm going to take her advice and shrug and carry on when H has a problem/preference/disappointment with whatever it is that can't be fixed in 5 minutes (change clothes/comb hair/stuff in teeth kinda thing).
H and I did problem solve about a few practical things this morning. The time awareness thing is really huge to him. I told him it's exhausting to set alarms every day for every single thing he wants me to get done. We agreed that he would tell me what are the mission critical times that have to be met ahead of time (that morning) and I would set an alarm for that that day. H will have to prioritize what is absolutely critical that I be timely for (like RIGHT on time- not within 10/15min like I normally am). Funny- mom in law said timeliness is something I've always struggled with, she was surprised that it would bother H so much since I was like this before we got married.
Wish me luck, this has been a whole week long panic attack. Hail Mary pass indeed.
[This message edited by MIgander at 5:05 PM, Friday, June 30th]