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What if I didn't try hard enough?

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lilacs40 posted 7/5/2014 09:46 AM

WH and I are closer to D than ever. Or I guess I should say I'm more convinced than ever that D is my only option.

But there's that nagging doubt that I didn't try hard enough. That I didn't try hard enough to understand and give him the support he needed. That I didn't try hard enough before things went horribly wrong. That I didn't try hard enough to give him the love that he says I withheld. That I didn't try hard enough to be a good wife. That I am the one giving up.

That all the things that he says about me are true. That I drove his friends away and that I am the cause of his unhappiness. That his friendships he made on the stupid game and continue even though he's done playing are okay. That an EA isn't the end of the world and I should move one.

What if I'm the problem?

norabird posted 7/5/2014 09:52 AM

Oh honey. He is the one who didn't try hard enough. The very fact that you are willing to take on the blame (apart from being somewhat codependent ) shows that you are invested in being a better partner, that your intentions are good, that you've done your best. A true partner accepts that, and forgives our small failings and quirks and our failures.

Everyone is human. But behind any things you did 'wrong' is a loving heart. Your WH has chosen to ignore that in order to justify his behavior. He wants to play the victim card. Don't let him. Hold your head high.

You can't make someone else step up. You can't make them stay by being perfect because they will never see you as,perfect no matter what--they will always find a complaint. You use too many cheeses in the lasagna. You store bacon grease in the fridge for cooking. You bought the wrong sheets. anything.

It is not your fault. Be kind to yourself.

painfulpast posted 7/5/2014 09:58 AM

What if I'm the problem?

Right - and what if I wake up and Glenda is telling me all about the yellow brick road?

Here's the problem - if your H was unhappy, he should have discussed it with you. Really discussed it, not made comments under his breath and not follow up on them. He should have suggested counseling. He should have set HIS boundaries, and worked with you.

But instead, he just decided to cheat. You had no idea. You couldn't work through that, because you were in the dark. He left the marriage when the EA started. He just didn't have the guts to tell you.

You aren't the problem. I'm not saying you're perfect because none of us are. I am saying your H chose the worst way to deal with any issues he was having.

You simply cannot blame yourself. You weren't in his head, and he wasn't doing anything productive. If he had problems, or things he wanted changed, it was his responsibility to talk about them - with YOU, not EAP.

Jrazz posted 7/5/2014 11:13 AM

Your compassion and introspection alone tells me that there is no way you should be shouldering what is happening here.

I think we've all had these doubts from time to time, but you need to know that this is NOT your fault.

The EA wasn't ok, it was toxic to your M and he choose to do it instead of communicate with you.

It sounds to me like he is content to sit back and let you be the "bad guy" and technically end the marriage. The thing is, what has HE done to try and help heal? What has his role been since DDay?

It's not your fault, lilacs40. It's OK to pursue the path that is healthiest for you, and he can blame you all day long but that doesn't make it true.


Broken1Again posted 7/5/2014 19:54 PM

I in my own way could have written your post. I feel I'm closer to D then R and I wonder how I've contributed to it, is a lot of it my fault. Was my H trying to tell me stuff but I was too stubborn/egotistical to listen.

I don't know the answers but I just wanted to tell you I am there with you.

lilacs40 posted 7/5/2014 20:10 PM

Thank you all for your support. It means a lot to know that other people get it. My IRL friends support me but they can't really get it because they've never been there (and I'm glad for that for them).

Ostrich80 posted 7/6/2014 03:36 AM

Don't listen to that banter in your head. He didn't try hard enough. The "what if" game will make you frozen and stuck.
Just push that out of your head when it pops up.

holesinmybucket posted 7/6/2014 09:55 AM


I am right there with you :)

Please understand in the deepest of your soul that his CHOICE to have an A was in mo way your fault and do not allow yourself to carry that responsibility. You could have been the "perfect wife" and in order for your WH to accept his own action would devalue the marriage to continue in his behavior.

That I didn't try hard enough to be a good wife. That I am the one giving up.

Accepting a bad marriage is not being a "good wife". I struggled with this for many years. My WH and my marriage became very dysfunctional and I became CoD, giving up my own wants and desires, in order to save a bad marriage....WHY, WHY do we do this. Well, I took divorce off the table it was not a choice for me, because I did not want to be the one giving up or breaking up our home. Looking back, I have to come to realize, that leaving a bad marriage does not make me a failure.

Please, do not allow yourself to determine what a "good wife" is based on the very distorted views of a WH. Reality check...your WH is not being a "good husband," so what could your WH possibly know about being a "good wife." If your WH is still in the midst of his bad behaviors, then he is seeing everything from an largely selfish view point.

Make the best choice for you..You decide what a "good husband" or " good wife" looks like and do not settle for less. Your happiness is just as important as your WH...maybe more. Don't put the energy in fighting for your WH happiness...Fight for your happiness. In the long run that is the only outcome worth fighting for.


doggiediva posted 7/6/2014 10:08 AM

You don't owe him any support at all..There is no such thing giving up too soon..
He is the one who cheated....If there is to be any R, the R and healing goes at your pace..Your WH needs to convey he is there in the M thru thick and thin and for the long haul...He is not there to grade you on how hard you are trying with R being the prize..

Summerluv123 posted 7/6/2014 10:14 AM


I am in the exact same boat. I question everything I have done or did not do in our M. I do not blame myself for my WH's A's, but I do blame myself for problems in our M. He did reach out at times to tell me he needed me to be more affectionate and to be more willing to try new things sexually. I shut him out. I did, I have to admit that to myself. His fault was that he did not push the issue he just sought those things elsewhere. No real conversations just words in passing. We had horrible communication.

I do not think my actions should have caused him to seek other women, but he did and that is his baggage to sort out not mine. I was not getting my needs met either, but I did not stray. However, I have to face the fact that I have a huge wall around myself that I need to bring down. Whether it is with my WH or someone else, I cannot carry this with me into other relationships. I need to grow up and figure out how to deal with my feelings and emotions and learn to communicate with others how I want to be communicated with.

I am ready to get to work on me!! Hope that gives you some perspective on how someone else sees it. I have gained so much just reading how others are dealing or working on their M issues. It is helping me see the faults within my own self that needs to be worked on. I am not accepting any blame for the A's, just for my own actions!!

doggiediva posted 7/6/2014 10:34 AM

Here is an example of life with a douche bag WH..

What did Sally's WH do when she told him to stop punching holes in the wall or to stop yelling at her? What did Sally's WH do when she told him that he needed to step up and get a job because she was tired of being the only breadwinner in the M ...What did Sally's WH do when she told him to finish his project of rebuilding a race car engine which sits right in the middle of their living room? Sally's douche bag WH answered all of her concerns and complaints with a "I'll do what I please"

If Sally's douche bag WH is too stubborn to listen to her for any length of time , respect her feelings, meet her halfway, than how good of a partner is he? BTW adventurous sex can be awesome and not a burden if it isn't left up to only one partner in the M to do all the work of making sex fun by arranging the time, the venue, childcare, etc.. What makes any marriage partner deserve to have all of his needs met or else he/she will cheat?

How was YOUR day to day life with your WH before you found out about his cheating? Was it all about him or did you get to breathe and have fun being you?

What is the use of trying to R with a WS who won't acknowledge that R is a gift and not a given? Some marriages just aren't worth trying to save..

Sweetie, you aren't the problem at all, he is...

[This message edited by doggiediva at 10:57 AM, July 6th (Sunday)]

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