Tough week

Many times I am left feeling confused and frustrated because I try so hard to 'understand' and as we all know, this understanding doesn't come easily to us, especially those of us who are just starting down the road to treatment. I suppose it's a good thing we're starting counseling tomorrow...

We have a lot of progress, even if it was 1 step forward and 2 steps back sometimes we always come out of each issue moving forward and there has just been a new and improved understanding of what we both want and need from this marriage in the past 9 monts, since we reconciled.

Today I wrestle with the "this isn't the end of the world" beast...as it seems each setback drags me (even if it's kicking and screaming) into the past and makes me start thinking all of the horrible negatives that kept us in such a mess for so long..i.e. "He'll never change", "he'll never put his marriage first", "eventually he'll lose his 'hyperfocus' on making things better and we'll be right back where we were a year ago" and so on and so forth. We had a fight today...first one in a while...about an issue between my SD and my nephew..over a cell phone. We both agreed to stay out of it, it would do nothing but cause us problems, and they both needed to learn to stand on their own. My nephew is like a son to me and his daughter and I don't get along at all. He resents my nephew over the situation (with the cell phone) and historically feels sorry for SD if she's asked to do anything that she doesn't want to do. Our biggest issue in our marriage was what I felt like was his lack of parenting of her...and he felt like I was far too hard on her...we overcompensated at completely opposite ends of the bar. We were in over our heads and neither was budging. Anyway, the situation was coming to a head and when push came to shove, he ultimately could not stay out of it...although he emphatically denies that he was trying to "help" SD out (he asked me if I would sell the phone on ebay and give my nephew the money instead of making her pay for it like she promised...which I cannot do..and he knows this...because she dropped it in water). We agreed to stay out of it, but yet he tries to help her, I refuse, and somehow I'm completely mistaken in his intentions. Then he does the classic...change the approach of the argument...and talk about how my nephew is causing hard feelings (between my family and SD) and how she'll "never want to come around again" if he doesn't stop...but realistically he's only asking her to pay for a cell phone of his that she destroyed. My husband also takes issue with the fact that "if it were anyone else" my nephew wouldn't have asked for them to pay for it..which is probably true..if it were his family...but that doesn't negate the fact that she took the phone, agreed to pay, and then changed her mind once it was dropped in water. As you can see, it was imperative that he and I remain neutral...but it didn't end up happening that way. I apparently made the mistake of pointing out to him that he even told SD she had to pay for the phone once she dropped it in water he got very ugly, cussed me, and hung up on me. He's home, refusing to eat supper, and ignoring me..slamming doors and making his anger very known. I tried to diffuse the situation and offer him supper..."I don't want any!" and so I will just give him space and let him figure it out on his own...and hopefully he'll see that what he did was uncalled for and apologize. This behavior is still very hurtful...maybe moreso now than ever..since it's what we're working so hard to change.

Also, where the confusion I was talking about earlier comes in...he's always been very jealous...and insecure. When I first started back to school he was very threatened. He wouldn't EVER admit it, but he would make 'joking' comments about me meeting someone else, "great that you have a lab partner that is your age...that's just what I need" and so on. He would literally give me the worst cold shoulder and attitude on the days that I went to school..I mean it was very obvious to me. I didn't get upset or angry..I just reassured him (not openly, just with a few extra "I love yous" and such) and he would be fine...until the next day I went to school. For the longest time he would BLATANTLY change the subject and refuse to discuss ANYTHING that pertained to my classes...and I did bring that to his attention (during fights mostly) and that improved a little. He was fine this summer when I took online courses. Also, I met up with 4 friend from elementary school for a little mini reunion over lunch this past weekend and up until 20 minutes before I was due to leave, he was obviously bothered by it. I don't NOT have friends because of him, it just would be nice to have him not treat me coldly everytime I dare have a life outside of him. As I was getting ready to leave he switched into the most supportive husband EVER...and I figure this was just so I wouldn't go and talk bad about him to my friends. When I got home he was fine. I am still getting the cold shoulder on school days, now that I'm back on campus, and it's really starting to wear me down. I had forgotten how hard it was to 'ignore'. He would deny it all to the ends of the Earth, but his attitude has morphed into something less than it was just a few weeks ago...and since he notoriously doesn't discuss these things with me (at least not in the midst of the storm in his head) then I am left to wonder and worry and try and just hang in there..until counseling. Another significant behavior that goes hand in hand with me going to school/him feeling insecure (for whatever reason) is that he'll start missing work. He was home "sick" with me 2 days last week..but I NEVER saw the first sign that he was sick..all the while I'm blowing my nose every 5 minutes, coughing up grose stuff, and was obviously very sick. Come to find out, he's taken all next week off too...and hasn't worked over not one day in the last week or so...is home early if not on time..and he's ALWAYS got things he needs to stay and work on. He worked over for at least an hour or so almost daily this past summer...before I went back to school. It is like he goes insane at the thoughts of having to leave the house...afraid of what I'll do. It's sad, really.

Thank God we're starting tomorrow. Oh..and I also suspect that this has something to do with me dropping the 'bomb' on him that we're going to counseling tomorrow. I feel like things happen to 'remind' me that I cannot just sweep it under the rug and not get the help we need just because things are going good ... for now... because we don't have anymore tools than we did 6 months ago...a year ago...and we NEED them. I NEED to know why he cheats and how it can be prevented. I need him to be more secure and supportive of my choice to return to school.

We have had a really good few months....really good summer for the most part...it's very disheartening to see him start behaving this way again. Just goes to show you, no matter how much progress you make on your own, the counseling is needed.

Didn't think anything could surprise me..but..

The subject of my nephew, SD, and cell phone came up in counseling today. Without going into a lot of detail, my husband has always been jealous of my relationship with my nephew. I admit I didn't always put my marriage first and am doing everything humanly possible to make sure that I do now, in every situation, making a very conscious effort to consider his feelings. My nephew has been disrespectful to my husband a couple of times and both times I have called him on it, even telling him he needed to apologize. (not that I'm holding onto the past, but this is FAR more than I got from him when SD was blatantly disrespectful to me and everyone else in our home for six LOOOOONG years).

Anyway...he claimed that the situation yesterday was me putting my nephew's feelings above his...and he said that I took my nephew's side over his. The reason this seems so insane to me is that the situation wasn't about ME and HIM it was about my nephew and SD. I said "I did take HIS side, but not over you...but over (SD). I admit I took sides, I feel what (SD) did is wrong, but it wasn't over YOU." and I pointed out that I didn't take it personally AT ALL that he took SD's side over my nephew. I hate that he decided to stand by her when she was doing wrong, but she is his daughter, she manipulates him horribly and I know it takes him time to see it..a lot longer than it does me. It hurts him when he has to admit what kind of person she is...so I've tried to stop trying to force him to see it..and giving him the benefit of the doubt that he'll 'get it' in his own time..and he is.

I told our counselor that it really surprised me that his perception of reality in that situation was so different than mine, but that I was willing to just let it go...however I feel it is unfair for him to accuse me of taking sides "over him" when it had nothing to do with him. He eventually admitted that he had a lot of work to do within himself over the situation with my nephew. I assume this means that he was admitting to being overly sensitive to everything pertaining to any interaction my nephew and I have. My nephew and I both have Facebook accounts, he doesn't (his affair started on FB with an old high school friend), and when I said something my nephew and I were joking about the other day he admitted that it bothered him for me and my nephew to just joke with each other. My nephew really isn't deserving of his resetment...and it is really hard for me to not try and make things right between them...they were once really close...but I am just praying about it and trying to let him come to terms on his own.