He said we had to deal with it before it got worse. I told him it stems from him not helping me heal. I've done what I can do, but to stay together he needs to go back and do all the digging and talking he's refused to do over the years. I don't see him doing that.
He said he'll do what he has to do. He just sounded beleaguered. Resigned.
One of the issues has been that he does t make me feel like the One, KWIM? Even the other husbands at our couples group got on his case about that. So that's his response.
I just shut down honestly. I wanted him to finally say, "I love you. I hate seeing you struggle with this, seeing you pull away from me. I'll do whatever it takes to build us back up again."
Instead, I feel like another chore. Am I putting too much on how he's phrasing something? Should I cut him slack?
Heck, he probably won't ever follow through, even when I finally have enough and file for D.
I just need to check in and see if I'm expecting too much in wanting him to have a different demeanor when it comes to this.
I did not expect or need those compliments from WS thru the years. He was not one to give them either. I accepted that. I now believe that was wrong on both our parts. I wished that I had instilled in him that he needed to do that, that is what most married couples do. After all that is a respect and appreciation for one another.
Now it is very hard for him to take on that role. I am not sure why. It is so hard for him to compliment me or appreciate me in anyway.
I think it is a combination of him not doing, his guilt now, and the fact that he trys to blame me for things. I think he may want to see so many flaws in me so he can blame me and feel less guilty.
This is something that I struggle with. Now In our marriage. The A is long gone. The now is smack dabb in my face everyday.
I want to hear that he loves me and appreciates me.
So from my view point, no I don't think you are wanting to much. But I don't have the answer on how to get that. I am sorry. I could have written your post.
Love kills slowly.
This is something I did for a long time. And it was a mistake.
For the longest time I felt that I couldnt heal because I was not getting what I needed from WW. I needed transparency and to see some real remorse from her. I needed a time line with the whole story. Im borderline OCD so I really felt I needed those details. I too wanted to feel I was first choice.
And none of that was happening.
I was stuck at not being able to move on because I felt that I needed these things from my WW. Without them I could never put the whole LTA to bed in my mind and be done with it.
The error of my thinking became apparent when I realized that I could not make my wife feel remorse. She either felt it on her own or she didnt. There was nothing I could do or say that would make any difference. So I could choose to either stare at that locked door or I could move on in another direction.
I couldnt make her regret or feel sorry for what she did. I couldnt make her be transparent because there are just too many ways people can communicate these days. Trying to stop them all is like playing whack-a-mole at the circus. I couldnt make her tell me the whole story. She claims she forgets (which I dont believe). In short there was nothing I could force her to do. She will either figure it out on her own and do it on her own or she wont.
You mentioned that your WH said he will comply and sounds beleaguered and resigned. I suggest you let him do what he feels he should. To insist he do otherwise is likely to build resentment in him. And that will run contrary to your purpose.
As far as being *the one*. Its probably over rated. NONE of us are *the one* for our WS. For me I think thats pretty obvious. And I wonder if anyone anywhere is *the one* for anyone?
It took me more years than I care to admit. But I came to a point where I just gave up about the whole thing. I stopped caring. I stopped caring about the outcome and I let go of the controls. And when I let go of those controls I discovered that they werent connected to anything.
I had been driving myself crazy thinking that I could somehow control at situation that was completely out of my control.
You cant change or fix another person. This is said all the time her on SI. We say it and yet we still try and change our WS. All my anguish and depression and all the rest of it came about because I wanted something from my WW that she is clearly not capable of giving.
You may or may not get what you want from your WH and he may or may not resent you for insisting on these things. And even if he complies he will likely in time return to his natural state. So instead of trying to change him just take stock of your WH natural state. Is that enough?
I suggest instead of trying to get blood from the stone of your WH that you work on yourself. I suggest that you make YOU the most important thing in your life and put WH and your M second. This is not to say that you should disrespect your WH or cheat on him or anything like that. Treat your WH as you would a good friend. A friend that has hurt you in the past and so you realize that it would not be wise to invest all your feelings into. But a friend nonetheless.
Start doing the things that make you happy. Make changes to YOUR life. If your WH follows alone thats fine then. If he doesnt also fine. Branch out flower and bloom.
Imagine our WH as a shut door in front of you. You can choose to stand there forever and ask for it to be opened. Or you can realize that what is beyond that door is closed to you and just turn and find another way. Happiness does not solely exist behind that door. Happiness can be found in allot of other places.
Wishing you the best.
I do think we often accept crumbs. Then wonder why we're starving. Then we see what our WSs give in the As and we finally realize that the person we've been excusing is capable of what our hearts have been seeking.
Actually, personally I'm in a good place. I have done a crapload of work on myself, so much that most people who have known me through this time see a huge difference. Yeah, the old insecurities rear their heads, but for the most part, I'm good with me.
The depression is tied to staying in a M where he has not done his part to fix what he did to the M. I can't do THAT work for him. And it's perfectly understandable for me to be upset about it.
I'm in a place now where I can see that I have accepted so much less than I should, even per-A. I refuse to do that anymore. I call him on his shot and expect him to do his part if he wants to stay M.
I can live in a friendship/roommate limbo. The problem comes when he wants physical intimacy and he's given no emotional intimacy. He also longs to hear me say, "I love you." TBH- I'm closer to being able to say, "I've filed for D."
At this point the question is, will he become the husband I've decided I deserve before I am at a place I can file for D.
Those WS's that will see their faults and work hard to change themselves are the ones that will also change the marriage.
I am also in the I am ok place. Do I struggle often, OH Yes. I have to find happiness, but I do.
However that does not make me not want intimacy with my WS.
I can live in a friendship/roommate limbo. The problem comes when he wants physical intimacy and he's given no emotional intimacy.
Very hard to do.
[This message edited by 2oldforthis at 5:24 PM, September 5th (Thursday)]
You've been going through this for years, Holly. No one can tell you what to do, but also no one can tell you that you have accept him and his emotional void for the rest of your life. You can live in limbo if you choose, but you don't HAVE to.
It is possible that you're not quite sure what that something is, that the "something" is undefinable but you'll know it when you see it.
You pour your heart and soul into your children. Into your creative outlets. Into improving yourself. Into situating yourself to be ok in case D comes. It's no wonder you're exhausted because your WH isn't doing that with the same consistent effort and more importantly maximum effort that you are.
I have many flaws. One is when I'm tired and stressed, I become super negative. I get caught up in negative thought loops and cannot for the life of me break free of them. As opposed to when I'm not stressed and tired and then I'm all super sunny disposition everything is going to work out fine!
I don't think you're depressed per se. Especially given the successes and strides you've achieved in other areas of your life. I think you're tired. Tired of going over this again and again. Tired of the quasi-limbo. Tired of not feeling ready to D (whether emotionally or money/organization-wise).
I'm tired for you.
It's almost as if it's time. Time to just let your WH be and see what happens. Maybe he'll surprise you. But in the interim, you just take care of you. You are "the one" for your children. And for your friends. And I promise you, if your WH can't grow the fuck up and get with the program, there will be men out there who can. He is not your only chance at romantic love that is true and pure. Not by a long shot.
But I think that's one of the things that get broken in marriage after an affair. The innocence of a marriage is broken, together with the trust.
The thing is, another person can't heal us. Another person can struggle for words and gestures they think we want to hear, but for us to be healed comes from within, in my opinion.
I wonder if some time away from it would be of any benefit, if you aren't getting from it what you need to feel more positive? Like a vacation for yourself, even a day or some alone time or time with family...I find spending time with two people I grew up with to be cathartic and they are some of the only people I trust left in the world. They cheer me more than anything else can right now and they have nothing to do with Nearly Exh at all.
I wish you well and hope your WH will follow through and not just spew words you want to hear.
A person is a person, no matter how small. -Dr. Suess
Perserverance and spirit have done wonders in all ages.
SOME of the WS we have are simply not capable of putting in the work on themself and the M and working to help us heal. That last is difficult for my WW because it would be uncomfortable for her. She would have to admit she was wrong about all the justifications she gave for her LTA. She would have to admit all the horrible things she did. And most difficult of all she would have to become emotionally vulnerable herself.
For a WS to do all this they would have to put in a 200% effort. This is like grades in school. Some kids put in just enough effort to get a passing grade. That amount of effort will not cut it for repairing a M after a LTA. It will take a extreme effort and a willingness to do the uncomfortable things necessary. To do whatever is necessary no matter the discomfort or personal cost.
SOME WS are not willing or capable of that.
My POV is that we should recognize this. If we are in a M with a person that is not capable of putting in that effort. Then expecting them to and waiting for them to do it will just cause us pain. We can stamp our feet and demand our WS to this or that, and they may comply (resentfully) for a time, but will eventually fall back to their usual patterns.
Our WS have shown us who they are and what they are capable of. Is that enough? Can we get by with that? Can we expand other aspects of our lives such that it is possible for us to remain in a M with them?
If the answers to those questions is NO then D is probably the best option. Waiting for something that will never happen will just keep you in limbo. And staying in limbo is as close to hell as I ever want to get.
I have poured energy into the kids and myself. I have even poured energy into the M, though that has been waning faster and faster as time goes by.
We had a talk on Thursday. He WS upset I didn't want to kiss him. Said he was tired of being rejected. He talked about how maybe we should live as roommates until the kids graduate (DD is in third grade so that would be at least 9yrs). Then we D.
I agreed, told him I'd move into the guest room and dropped it. It was morning ad I was facing my first ay back at "work" doing my volunteer job teaching two-year-olds. Suddenly he reversed his attitude and got all clingy. *sigh*
The upshot is he's now willing to do whatever it takes. I'm still moving forward to my healthy and happy place, ok whether he catches up or not. His behavior has changed but he can usually do that for about a week. He is reading a book my IC suggested. That's totally new. The real test is if he finishes it and discusses it with me. It's less than 150 pages IIRC.
I did tell him that if it comes down to it when I'm ready to leave, I'm leaving. There is no roommate. The kids see a functioning M or they see a functioning D. I am not going to be an example of dysfunction. His chance is now and if he chooses to squander it, there won't be another. Because of I get to the point that I feel I have no choice but to tear their world apart, he doesn't not get a chance to come back from that.
I still do want to be that person that matters enough for him to take action. If not though, just saying words like that show how much I've grown into myself- even in the past year.
No judgement here, but I found that I was so competetive at the end of our marriage that I wanted to "win" him. Then, I realized that I didn't even like him as a person.
Just a different perspective.