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Why do I feel guilty?

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permanentpain posted 4/7/2013 14:27 PM

I'm trying to restart my life by meeting new people, hobbies, and going out from time to time. But I feel guilty all of the time, like I'm doing something wrong. It's stupid, but I just feel horrible afterwards. I have encouragement from family and friends, but I gotta work on this feeling. Anyone ever felt like this?

gonnabe2016 posted 4/7/2013 14:58 PM

What is it that you feel guilty about?

Could your stbx be characterized as *controlling*?

permanentpain posted 4/7/2013 15:11 PM

A little bit. He didn't do it outright, but if I went out he would always pout or put on a face of displeasure. When I would ask if that made him upset, he would say no, go out. Sometimes I would still go out, at other times I would stay home so that I wouldn't upset him. It's just weird.

gonnabe2016 posted 4/7/2013 15:39 PM

Sultan would do the same types of things. There was never any overt NO from him. It was all you have described. The facial expression, the "when will you be home", the "why did it take so long?", the "why do you have to do that now?". Just kind of a layer of dis-approval. Regardless of the activity I was engaged in. I was always rushing through my errands in order to get back home. I was never comfortable meeting my friends anywhere other than in their homes or at a Sultan-approved event/function. I always felt as if I had a curfew.

After I detached from him and removed myself from his influence, those same feelings lingered. He would have the kids for the night at his place and I would be *free* to do as I pleased and go wherever I wanted to go, but I found that even then, I would get uncomfortable if I was out past a certain time or dawdling in a store for a while.

The good news is that I don't have those same feelings anymore. They've disappeared, much to my relief.

Does it feel as if that could be the link to what you're feeling?

I.will.survive posted 4/7/2013 15:53 PM

OMGosh, I JUST posted this to a friend! I had a 2nd date with a guy last night and felt a twinge of guilt as I walked in a public place holding his hand. WTH?! I'm officially divorced so why would I feel that way?

I'll tell you... it's hard hitting the reset button after 15 years of loyalty on my end. Maybe you are experiencing that?

It's ok to laugh, to enjoy new things and new people. YOU get to drive the bus now and decide where to go and what to do and who to do it with because it's your life. Don't do something because someone else wanted you to. Do all things for yourself that make you happy. You deserve it!

SBB posted 4/7/2013 17:04 PM

In the early days I put my single coat on over my married coat.

I felt weird about it all the bloody time. I wouldn't call it guilt, I'd call it - just weird.

I've since removed my married coat and am only wearing my single coat (nothing underneath sometimes... ).

Its conditioning hun - and habit. It will pass. Like a new pair of shoes you need to break in. So to speak.

tesla posted 4/7/2013 17:34 PM

Yep. I tend to feel especially guilty when I spend money on myself.

I verbalize a lot to myself when I start feeling guilty, reassure myself that I'm allowed to spend some money on me because I earned it, all the bills are paid, everybody is fed and clothed, so dammit, I'm going to enjoy it. I probably look like a crazy lady when I'm out shopping.

permanentpain posted 4/7/2013 17:52 PM

gonnabe- that is exactly how I feel!! The curfew thing through me off ... I actually went to a salsa show where one of my friends was doing her dance presentation and I swear I was cinderella and had to be home by midnight. So funny how we train ourselves to behave, uuggghhhh.
Strongbutbroken- i like your analogy, shoes are my thing
Tesla - I've never had that guilt since I was the main breadwinner for my family... They have everything they need, I feel no guilt when shopping!!! So do it, girl!

permanentpain posted 4/7/2013 17:53 PM

I.will.survive - thank you

damncutekitty posted 4/8/2013 11:08 AM

When I would ask if that made him upset, he would say no, go out. Sometimes I would still go out, at other times I would stay home so that I wouldn't upset him.

Same here!

My XH was very controlling, though. In addition to pouting if I went out, he had complete control over my paycheck. He told me how to dress, what to read, what to wear, what to eat, etc.

When we first split up I used to get a sick thrill from doing things I was not allowed to do when I was with him.

Bebba1171 posted 4/8/2013 14:04 PM

I felt guilty/strange at first. People like me don't get divorced.

I am a good guy and have never been into trouble.

I was totally embarrassed about my situation.

The more I read and studied about infidelity and divorce, the more it became apparent that this is unfortunately all too common.

While we all could have done some things different in our marriages, it was our X's that were broken enough to have an affair.

Once I got my divorce decree done, I went out and bought myself a new golf cart to replace the oldest one at the club I belong to.

My friends all were happy for me. I do quite well financially, but have always been a tightwad. A high percentage of my clothes come from Wal Mart.

Starting to date was really weird. I was not even interested in dating at all and then I found out my testosterone was super low.

I started taking Androgel and sure enough women were attractive again.

Saw a pic of a gal on the internet, reached out to her, and we have been dating ever since.

Dating is weird - especially in a small town. I have received lots of strange looks from people that likely don't know I am divorced. My daughter thinks I started dating too soon, but my son is OK and just met my SO this weekend.

Everyone has issues/problems. Life isn't perfect. Just lay it all out there and folks will appreciate your honesty and transparency.

I get lots of laughs on my Androgel story - and even bring it up on sales calls.

Customers think it is very funny.

I may have overdosed a bit on it since I was begging PHMH and Tesla to marry me! Had not met either one of them yet, but their running and intelligence is really attractive to me.

Purpose of this long winded message is to tell you that you have to move on and look forward. Don't feel guilty. You are still very young with a whole lot of life to look forward to.

Don't worry about what other people think but keep your kid's feelings in mind. Unless you are getting more serious or exclusive with someone, don't introduce them to your kids.

This will all get better soon.

I remember seeing your pic a while back and you are so beautiful. Your X surely knows that you would attract a lot of men out in public.

[This message edited by Bebba1171 at 2:27 PM, April 8th (Monday)]

permanentpain posted 4/8/2013 16:50 PM

I may have overdosed a bit on it since I was begging PHMH and Tesla to marry me!

Would love to see the response of both on those posts...

I'm not dating yet, I feel its too soon and I'll probably end up a blubbering mess, lol... However, as I've read some of the posts here I definitely was controlled by my STBX. I am intent on moving forward so I have scheduled several things that I would have never done because he would disapprove:
1. Bruno Mars concert (bought the tickets, yay for me)
2. Paddleboarding (he's a surfer but never wanted to teach me) (to do list)
3. joining a workout group (always made me feel guilty about working out and leaving him at home). (done)
4. finding a dance academy (he hated the attention it brought) (in progress)

Bebba - thanks for the compliment , his loss and another's gain!

[This message edited by permanentpain at 4:52 PM, April 8th (Monday)]

phmh posted 4/8/2013 18:28 PM

Looks like you have a great plan in place!

My XWH was also very controlling, in a subtle way. He didn't have any friends and relied on me for his entertainment. He was bored if he were home alone, so he'd always lay guilt trips on me and try to get me not to do anything.

After we separated, I became a major social butterfly for a time, but now I've settled down into a more sustainable pattern.

I don't know that I felt guilt, as much as relief. I'm involved in several nonprofits, which means meetings, and I used to have to rush home to try to get dinner ready. The first few times post-separation, it was great -- I stayed and socialized after; I wasn't in a rush; I could make dinner whenever I got to it. Or eat cold cereal if I wanted to!

It did take some time getting used to, but now it's fabulous!

Don't be in a rush to start dating -- enjoy being single! (I'm currently taking a dating hiatus since I was resentful of the time it was taking from my friends, hobbies, and alone time. I figured that was a sign I should step away for a few months at least!) I know I'll find someone someday and I'll probably marry again, but for right now, I am just enjoying actually living instead of existing.

permanentpain posted 4/8/2013 19:36 PM

I know I'll find someone someday and I'll probably marry again, but for right now, I am just enjoying actually living instead of existing.

Love it! I don't know about marriage for myself, but the rest is spot on.

tryingagain74 posted 4/8/2013 20:37 PM

I had the "curfew" mentality as well! STBX would always encourage me to go do something for myself (go out with friends, get a pedicure), but when the actual day came (before and after we had kids), he'd get all whiny and pouty: "When will you be back? What should I do about dinner?"

Here's the BEST example-- I should have known that our M was in trouble when this happened. Once again, he encouraged me to "take time for myself." So, I booked a couple of hours at a local spa for a facial and a pedicure. After I had the facial, I was feeling relaxed and was just about to get my pedicure when my phone rang. When I answered (because I feared it was an emergency-- maybe something was wrong with one of the kids), he actually asked me how much longer would I be gone?!?! I think I had been gone an hour at that point. I was so exasperated and then felt rushed and annoyed for the rest of the appointment. Even the woman doing my pedicure thought it was ridiculous.

Now, I don't feel guilt, though. I feel FREE. I love going to the mall, looking at my watch, and realizing that I can browse to my heart's content. He doesn't call my parents' house anymore, wondering when I'll be home when I visit, and I don't have to run through the grocery store as fast as I can maneuver the cart around people.

What you're feeling is FREEDOM, and it's foreign to you. Keep going out until you get used to it-- you deserve to enjoy it!

bitchboots posted 4/9/2013 09:14 AM

PP, I am right there with you. I am trying to meet new friends as well as make myself go out at least once a week. I feel the guilt as well, ESPECIALLY when I enjoy myself. Heck, I feel guilty even just looking for a job.

Not sure what that is about.

veelop5 posted 4/9/2013 14:55 PM

I thought I was the only one that ran throught the supermarket!!!! Oh my goodness....I remember when I caught myself doing it and stopped in my tracks....I don't do it anymore I actually browse now!!! It takes time!!!

Williesmom posted 4/10/2013 13:29 PM

I live in a very small town, and I was really embarrassed about what happened to me. I felt like everyone knew about it.

Now, I don't really care. I'm only getting one chance at this life, and I'm not going to shortchange myself because of my idiot WXH's actions.

My Wxh was also very controlling, btw - perhaps that has more to it thanwhat I realized. hmmm.

SeanFLA posted 4/11/2013 12:05 PM

Felt guilty too and quite a bit embarrassed I think as well. I was good guy and never expected myself to be divorced. Feels very strange for someone to refer to the woman I was seeing as my "girlfriend". Sounds so high school to me. 45 year olds aren't supposed to have girlfriends. Just like now when people refer to WW as my "Ex"....I hate that. Even the first time I was together with the woman I was seeing it was weird for me. Like I was cheating or something even though in my head I had to keep reminding myself I was divorced and I wasn't committing adultery. I think it's like realizing your now "divorced" takes some time to sink in until it just doesn't bother you anymore so much.

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