Imagine what your life will be like after the kids are gone and nothing has changed between your spouse and you. And the only thing that has impacted your relationship is that you have "taught" your spouse that it is OK to ignore you, "do his own thing", spend his own time and money as he wishes without discussion with you. I am the voice from the other side of your future telling you that this is how you will have to accept your life.
You will have to accept that:
• you were not loved even though you loved and sacrificed for the marriage partnership.
• you are not only not loved but you are hated and blamed for all his failures...cognitive dissonance. He does not take responsibility (or even remember) ANY of the history of your marriage except what he did good.
• you will have to face the sorry fact that you were not good to yourself. You gave so much of yourself that you don't even know what you want or who you are. Because you believed that if you loved enough and worked hard enough that things would work out OK.
• you may, at the end, give yourself the adjectives of "weak", "voiceless", "sad" and you may be financially stuck.
• you will then have to accept WHO YOU ARE NOT and WHO YOU COULD HAVE BEEN in your own right.
I have been looking up the word "gaslighting" lately and realize that while I was loving and working, H was doing a dance/playing games of trying to get away with things. He was just limping along trying to not work too hard, amusing himself and exploiting the fact that I was willing to try and try some more and not leave. In his own world, things were going fine. I, on the other hand, did not want to disappoint or annoy or manipulate my H. I was afraid of his mean words....taking them to heart on to myself. Now I am standing up for myself and H does not like it so he shuns me completely and slams things because I am treating him like he has treated me all these years. It is educating to me to watch how he reacts when I do that. And to think that I lived like that with him most of my adult life trying to appease and connect with him.
My advice, to anyone young enough or financially well off enough is to learn about gaslighting and what to do about it. What I have found out is that I should have left when I first felt disrespected and unloved. Then not take him back unless he actively shows that he cares and is willing to act like a husband who cares and communicates like someone who cares. As it is for me, we are two roommates who don't particularly like one another.
At this point there is no use in trying to make things any different than they are. I have been married but my husband has not been married. I accept that and move on with things that are healthy and connected.
Here is my dilemma. How do I
Submitted by jennalemone on
Here is my dilemma. How do I verbalize this union of ours to my children/grandkids with truth and compassion for us all. They can see that H and I don't meet each other's eyes or smile at each other with appreciation and affection. They are not getting a model of marriage, love and partnership. That is a big regret of mine...the joy that could have been lived and modeled for the generations to come. I think H badmouths me (jokingly) to the kids. I get to work on how to truthfully relate...what? We have been a bad example and I do not have the words or the wisdom to pass along for good relationships. It is hard for me to say and accept to myself that our marriage has been destructive to me. I don't know how to tell them that I sat in a miserable situation all this time and worked for something that turned out to be not OK. So negative to tell the truth.
I am trying to have courage and resources and community to be able to stand strong and be able to live life with all the opportunity that is out there, while accepting my unenviable situation.
Hi, Jenna. I will think
Submitted by PoisonIvy on
Hi, Jenna. I will think about your questions and try to formulate a helpful response.
Jenna, I think one approach
Submitted by PoisonIvy on
Jenna, I think one approach would be to use the words you wrote above, just rephrased a bit:
"You are not getting a model of marriage, love and partnership. That is a big regret of mine...the joy that I could have lived and modeled for you for generations to come. We have been a bad example; I wish I had the words or the wisdom to pass along to you for good relationships. It is hard for me to say and accept to myself that our marriage has been destructive to me. It is hard for me to say this: I sat in a miserable situation all this time and worked for something that turned out to be not OK. It feels so negative to tell the truth but this is the truth."
Love is blind....
Submitted by c ur self on
Children spend their whole lives seeing mom and dad, as mom and dad...They are full of acceptance for each...They will accept the ways of each...Oh!, that's just my Mom's way...Oh..That's just my Dad's way....Children have blind spots when it comes to thinking of mom and dad in the way they think about their own efforts at He/She relations..."
Oh, What? ...OMG, I don't think that way, their just my parents"....Children are very uncomfortable (even adult children) when it comes to assessing their parents, or thinking about them like they were just another struggling couple...The two people they love so dearly, warts and all....If you feel like something needs expressed to them in regards to what they have witnessed...I would just tell them simply, that you love them and you wish you and their father would have been better examples for them, when it comes to what a healthy attachment looks like...One of love, kindness and mutual respect....."Closeness"
If you guard against blame, you will do well...IF they have comments or questions at that point, they may share them...There are plenty of things that they know and see, but, may not be comfortable to speak about....They may just hug you, and say we know....I wouldn't be surprised if that happened either....
Just my thoughts..