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Need vs. Want

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MUFan posted 4/29/2013 09:11 AM

One of WH's whys was that he didn't feel I needed him. I let this sink in for a couple of days and then asked why he felt that way. He sited a bad habit of mine to throw divorce into arguements (which I admit I did) and that I stopped wearing my wedding ring a couple years ago (had to for work and then lost the diamond out of my engagement ring). He felt I wasn't as committed to the marriage and seemed to have one foot out the door (which I didn't).
I had a horrid 1st marriage and was totally dependant on my XH...he was sexually and emotionally abusive. I wasn't allowed to work and isolated from friends and family. After my divorce, I worked to get my degree and didn't want to be dependent on a husband again. The marriage ended because I started to stick up for myself and my daughter and he disappeared since I wasn't allowing myself to be controlled anymore.
I think I always threw out divorce in arguements because I need control...If I said it first it was my decision and not one made for me. As for the ring...I just didn't see it as being important.
All this to say, I don't need WH and I let him know. I choose every day to remain committed to my marriage because I WANT to be there.
Although it was hard, I put on my wedding band today. It may be a symbol of his broken vows to me, but I chose to wear it to show I am committed to R. I want us to work out but if we ever have a DDay #2, I am fully able to walk out and live on my own.

losingmyground posted 4/29/2013 12:05 PM

It is such a fine line that we walk as women. Never stop doing things by yourself. We always need to be able to live independently. But play the strong, manly card when you can. Have him open a bottle or jar. Left things for you.

They want to know that they are needed just as much as wanted. Notice how many men suffer from the knight shining armour syndrome.

losingmyground posted 4/29/2013 12:05 PM

And kudos on the wedding band. It means a ton to men.

Uneek posted 4/29/2013 12:17 PM

This was one of my H's whys as well. The OW needed him, desperately. He perceived me as not needing him. And I guess I don't - but as you said, I WANT him. Personally, I'd prefer to be wanted over needed.

atsenaotie posted 4/29/2013 12:20 PM

One of WH's whys was that he didn't feel I needed him.

Hi MUFan,

Do not take too much ownership of this issue. As I find is often the case, there is another why resting underneath of this one.

Why did your WS respond to feeling you did not need him by turning to OW to have a hidden A? Why didn't he confront you about the frequent use of the D word, maybe in MC? Why didn't he say something about the wedding band? Why did he stay n a M where he felt uneeded?

Although it was hard, I put on my wedding band today. It may be a symbol of his broken vows to me, but I chose to wear it to show I am committed to R.

Other than for a brief period I wore my wedding ring after dday and intend to until I die or I am D. My ring is scratched and a little dull with a loss of luster. Much like the M in represents. My ring does not represent what FWW did, it represents my vows.

FWW lost her her wedding ring and had to have her engagement ring cut off of where she had put it on her left hand ("wrong hand for marrying the wrong man"). One ring is new, and much like her, the other had to be repaired, resized, and got a polish. They do not look like the rings from a 20 year M, because she is getting a "do over".

[This message edited by atsenaotie at 12:23 PM, April 29th (Monday)]

MUFan posted 4/29/2013 12:42 PM

He should have come talk to me about the issue. We are both major conflict avoiders and our communication has been crap for years. We let it all our frustrations build up until one or both of us blow up.
The OW "needed" him as well and being the people pleaser he is, tried to help her. I take none of the blame for the affair but this is my part of 50% of the problems in our marriage.

Cheatedon23 posted 4/29/2013 13:08 PM

MUFan, I am right there with you. My WH felt like I didn't want him anymore, and his AP needed him more than I did. I'm sorry I was too busy raising "our" children!!

When he told me this, I admit I did feel guilty about the way I made him feel, but the good people here at SI, made me realize that no matter what was happening in our marriage, he was 100% responsible for CHOOSING to have an affair.

Be proud that you are an independent woman and able to stand on your own two feet.

catlover50 posted 4/29/2013 15:02 PM

My fWH felt this way as well. I am strong and independent, but have been since we met. I asked him if he wanted someone needy and insecure why did he marry me?

He actually did look deeper, pursuant to finally telling me of his years long CSA. He opined just this weekend that her insecurity spoke to his insecurity, kind of like pathologies recognizing each other. Normally he is strong and confident, the boss, the doctor (as am I), but the hidden part of him reached out to someone equally damaged. There may have been some comfort there--at least he was more secure than she was! He never wanted to look weak in front of me.

Now he is more willing to be vulnerable for me and has seen how I did not reject him after telling me of his CSA( which apparently is a common unspoken fear), or for that matter after the A. I, in turn, am more than happy to have him open my car door, choose the wine, carry the's kind of nice actually and it makes him feel needed.

[This message edited by catlover50 at 3:02 PM, April 29th (Monday)]

Theradin posted 4/29/2013 21:15 PM

While I admit, as a man, I do strongly desire to feel needed (something I never felt in my marriage up until very recently). That being said, that is absolutely NO excuse, whatsoever, to have an affair. If you don't feel you are needed then grow a pair of balls, man up, and tell your wife how you feel. A real man doesn't sneak off with another woman to feel needed. Sorry if that's harsh, and maybe I'm old-fashioned, but that's just what I believe.

That being said, I can say that, personally, I would feel as though my spouse wasn't that committed to our M if she constantly threw out divorce during arguments (I'm guessing the arguments aren't about the A, but, say, about making the car payment, for example). I would feel that she was only with me out of pity or boredom or any other non-romantic, committed reasons. I would honestly recommend NOT making threats you don't intent to backup with actions. It is incredibly confusing for men, and we are confused enough as it is..!

In addition, I would be very displeased if my wife didn't wear her wedding ring, and she would be rightfully displeased if I didn't wear my wedding band. When I see married people not wearing those, I automatically assume they don't want to be labeled as unavailable. Sorry, but that's just the truth, and most people I know feel the same way. You putting on your wedding ring signifies your commitment to your husband (and his to you, when he wears his). My WW always wore her wedding ring (except when she was with her AP. Then, she had the foresight to at least remove it and look available, I guess?).

I understand you have been hurt and abused in your past marriage, but you do have to see that your husband is NOT your ex-husband, as hard as it may be to make transition, mentally, you really need to do that in order to build a closer relationship with him, build intimacy, etc.

Keep up the good work. Keep fighting for what you want. That doesn't mean you don't get to be an independent woman, but your independence should foster a CLOSER relationship with your husband, not the other way around.

MUFan posted 4/30/2013 10:27 AM

Theradin- Thanks for the male perspective. I totally agree that he should have manned up and discussed it with me but we now are where we are.
I am working in IC on issues from my 1st marriage that have unfortunately transferred to my current marriage.

StillGoing posted 4/30/2013 10:52 AM

One of WH's whys was that he didn't feel I needed him.

I'm going to say this isn't a gender thing thanks to my own anecdote: my wife said that at one point, "It's nice to feel needed by someone."

IMO the feeling needed thing is a misinterpretation of heavy-duty want, like "Right now I need to be with you to feel happy because I can't imagine otherwise" - that is like a codependent way of saying "I really want to feel appreciated."

The problem is that when someone reaches the point of moving into the infidelity ring, nothing the BS can do will make them feel appreciated because the WS is just tuning all that shit out, or even warping it to look entirely different.

Yeah right now the family needs my income and my wife needs my masculinity to protect her from bears and Thin Men but "needs" are really only literal when you're an invalid, incompetent or too young to be considered personally responsible.

also strong willed independence is attractive to some while others want little big eyed wallflowers who would fit right in as a Rescueme Princess in an anime. Those are two polar extremes and generally most people are somewhere in the middle.

wrt throwing divorce into a lot of arguments - yeah it's a way to declare your independence and control over yourself, but it's also a very strong statement about what you think of your relationship. It's like bringing a gun to a shouting match and taking the safety off. In your case your history is such that you need to have that handy and available, but others aren't going to view it the same way - it will predominantly be a statement about your marriage and only tangentially related as a statement about your independence.

Not an excuse to run off and fuck something pliable ofc, that's just cowardice.

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