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Holding a grudge

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LilBlackCat posted 3/6/2018 13:09 PM

I have a question.. and it's due to reading that holding a grudge over X amount of years is a sign of not healing.. even seen as a red flag by most.

But I feel that after everything.. I will always hold a grudge towards my STBXWW.. She destroyed my family.. the kids are now separated from each other.. half with her and half with me.. She just expects the kids to adapt and they are.. but she hates the resentment they have towards her.. saying it's my fault.

I didn't want my kids to have to deal with step parents.. I did, and it was not the greatest.. I was always treated differently than my siblings (that were his).. She made this a reality again due to her actions.. I've seen this over and over again... I know I may be very keen on catching such behavior. but history always seems to repeat itself on this topic around me.

She continues to want to be friends, I'm keeping it "friendly" for now as we have to deal with kid stuff and a couple remaining financial obligations...

Is holding a grudge, really a bad thing?

little turtle posted 3/6/2018 13:25 PM

Is holding a grudge, really a bad thing?

What good comes from holding a grudge?

I see someone who is holding a grudge as someone who won't let go of the past. Someone who won't move on from a bad period in his/her life. You don't need to be happy about what happened, but if you're able to reach indifference about it, you're able to adapt to changes and let the past be in the past.

Let it go!

MaryG posted 3/6/2018 13:27 PM

Well, I canít see myself ever reaching a state of indifference towards XWH, such is the damage he has inflicted on me. Whether that means I bear a grudge or not, I donít know. I do know that I detest and despise him with every fibre of my being and I canít see that changing anytime soon.

SuperDaddy1027 posted 3/6/2018 13:58 PM

I donít know if itís a grudge but I will always feel ďsomethingĒ towards XWW. I hate that she did this. I hate that I didnít have a say. We were supposed to be a team. She was supposed to tell me when she wasnít happy. Iím not a mind reader. She wanted out. The problem is I never got the memo until I noticed changes. By then it was too late to fix our marriage. She broke a vow and a promise. I donít trust her....never will. She had already checked out months (if not years) earlier.

Having said that...I donít want XWW back. I just wish this never happened to our family. But it did and Iím trying to be the best Daddy I can be. Thats all I can control.

thebighurt posted 3/6/2018 14:10 PM

I'm not sure what you are feeling is "holding a grudge". You, as well as the kids, are still adapting to a new situation and being forced to see her and deal with things doesn't help. And, sadly, you have quite a few years of dealing with kid things with her. NC will not be possible until at least then, and NC can make a big difference. If you still feel the same then, you MAY be holding a grudge!

I never wanted D for my family either, and the thought of a forced step-family upset me even though my "children" were already adults with their own families at the time. Now it just is what it is and theirs to deal with. It doesn't hurt that I was told they really don't want much to do with him any longer.

I used to feel I was sort of holding a grudge toward xpos, but realized HE is much worse about it than I when I observed HIS reaction to seeing ME the last time were in the same space. I actually felt a bit threatened and afraid of what he might do because I know he has a horrible temper and gets physically violent. (He has attacked a person since leaving me, marrying one OW and "making himself HAPPY for the first time" and could have been arrested if the man had pressed charges.) His manner toward me definitely showed that side even though it was in public in a crowded place with lots of witnesses if it came to that. I realized then that I was just about at "meh" after a few years of NC. He, however still has severe anger issues, obviously, NC or no, and has a tight grip on that "grudge". It was all MY fault, you see.

Phoenix1 posted 3/6/2018 14:57 PM

To me it is *how* that "holding of a grudge" manifests itself that matters. Are you truly holding a grudge, with anger? Or, are you simply refusing to forgive her but still moving on with life in a positive manner?

If you are holding on to anger with that grudge, then no, that is not healthy. But simply refusing to forgive someone without holding onto the anger is not necessarily unhealthy. You CAN moving forward, heal, and have a positive mindset while refusing to forgive. Some people need to forgive for themselves, some don't. It is very individualized. But holding onto any anger for a lengthy period of time does no one any good, and the stress from it can actually cause physical health issue if left unchecked. It will keep you stuck.

I am one of those that does not need to forgive. I will never forgive my ex for what he has done. Is that a grudge? Maybe. The answer is in the eye of the beholder. However, I have moved on just fine and am healed and happy in my new life. I am civil with the ex, but we are not, nor will we ever be, friends. That civility suits my purpose to keep the drama down, which I don't want or need in my life. HE would love nothing better than for us to be "friends," and he always acts like we are. Meh, I just ignore him and keep to my routine of civility with VERY strong boundaries in place. It works for me and, quite honestly, that's all that matters.

LilBlackCat posted 3/6/2018 15:05 PM

Are you truly holding a grudge, with anger?
Yea, I see what you mean and the distinction.. I do not feel I'm angry at all..

Am I happy with my life, no.. not entirely.. I mean things are getting better.. I am one of those people who prefer having someone to live life with, versus living solo..

I know that at some point in the future, that will hopefully resolve itself. I just keep being the best Dad possible and having fun with the kids.

[This message edited by LilBlackCat at 3:07 PM, March 6th (Tuesday)]

Newlease posted 3/6/2018 16:14 PM

I don't think holding on to anger is healthy.

I will never forget what XWH did to me, to our family - the pain, the deception. But I don't dwell on it.

I am able to be completely indifferent to him and his life - it does not affect me in the slightest. I have a wonderful life and I'm happy - that's all that really matters.

I think moving on is healthy but it takes time and work. Allowing yourself to stay stuck in anger and bitterness just means you still allow your X to control your life. No one should want that.

Sending strength and peace.


Randy1133 posted 3/6/2018 16:24 PM

I will never forgive my ex for tearing our family apart, but at the same time I'm certainly glad she is out of my life (except as a co-parent). Anyways, I still have resentment and anger toward the whole thing and I don't think I will ever let it go, because to be honest I like it.

6M$Man posted 3/6/2018 18:16 PM

I don't hold a grudge for either of my ex wives.

...but if they were on fire I wouldn't waste pissing on them to put them out.

shiloe posted 3/6/2018 18:50 PM

I do know that I detest and despise him with every fibre of my being and I canít see that changing anytime soon.

^^^Ha, ditto for me

GGFinisHLast posted 3/6/2018 23:17 PM

My take, it depends on active or passive resentment.

For me, there will always be some there. I can't ever imagine being friends with my XWW. I can be cordial, but I can do that with one of her AP's when he trapped me into a social situation with colleagues. I can be cordial to people I totally despise.

I still have resentment and anger toward the whole thing and I don't think I will ever let it go, because to be honest I like it.
I was thinking about this on the commute home. Active resentment is very tempting. It feels empowering, but it also anchors me to the very things I want to move on from. My life might have some nasty issues, but rather than dwell on blame for how and why I'm here, my effort is better spent looking forward to change it.

I'm okay with scars. I think I'm almost through the bandaging phase. What I don't want are festering wounds that I keep picking at, so that they never heal.

Cheatee posted 3/7/2018 13:52 PM

Folks talk about letting go of anger/grudges like it's something you decide to do. I think pushing yourself too hard to do that just pushes it all underground.

I have found it takes time and work and then it happens by itself. It's very difficult when we continually confront issues caused by the fallout of the split.

In my case, as my daughter's interactions with me become more positive than they were when my fragile XWW lashed out at me through DD, it's easier to let go. But while DD was taking all her anger out on the safe parent (me), it was very difficult not to have a seething rage toward XWW.

smokenfire posted 3/7/2018 21:24 PM

Disclaimer: I'm hardly the poster child for healthy.

I find anger exhausting. I hate it. It takes up so much stinking energy and room in your head. You could be idk, working a second job if you could put all that to good use.

Perhaps move towards (baby steps if need be) okay this is how it is. This is what I need to watch out for. This is what I will do if x,y, or z happens.

Read a lot about how to help your kids deal with divorce. Read about how to start a life long hobby with your children.

Take that energy and put it IN your kids and yourself rather then AT the situation.

Just my thoughts. Your results may vary.

shakentocore posted 3/8/2018 05:25 AM

I think the anger may always be there, but thereís an element of how much you let it control your life.

I had a boyfriend many years before I met WH that treated me very badly. He still has not paid back all of the money I lent him. I literally wouldnít p*ss on him if he were on fire.

However, I also wouldnít talk about him on a DATE or even when I was hanging out with friends unless the topic of ďbad exísĒ came up (like in this post!) 99.99% of the time I donít think about him because I am busy living my life. There are hundreds of things more interesting about me and my life to talk about.

In NB the phrase ďcoming to mehĒ is often used. I donít think you need to forgive your WS to get there.

cantaccept posted 3/8/2018 07:10 AM

Perhaps it just takes some of us a bit longer to get to meh?

I think I am closer but not all the way there. There are times when I wonder if I will ever get all the way there.

For me, I still have issues in the present that are related to the years of abuse from him. It's my reactions to things now that make me angry at x. For instance, the nightmares, I still have nightmares at least a couple of times a week. Then there are the moments of anxiety that just appear, a tone of voice or a phrase can start the heart pounding. It is better but damn I want it to be over!

Sometimes it just feels like I have to work so hard to not have the past intrude on the present.

Also, he keeps finding ways to send messages to me. That definitely sets me back a bit but not like it used to. It doesn't make me miss him, it makes me angry!

I will be moving soon and I hope that will help. I think the only way he can contact now would be through work and hopefully he won't do that. Also, there are still triggers in this house. I have tried to create new memories here but the violent memories are still there.

My life is so much better now. I am content. I have good people and family. I have people that actually treat me well consistently!

I try to hold on to those realities when the memories creep in. This is not easy.

Forgiveness? Probably never. Just working towards amnesia!

Oftencheatedon posted 3/8/2018 07:49 AM

Sometimes you just realize that a person you once loved is not a good person with any sense of integrity. Eliminating such people from oneís life is NOT holding a grudge.

Itís a very prudent decision to avoid people who lie, cheat and are abusive.

MST3Kfan posted 3/8/2018 08:42 AM

I donít know if itís a grudge but I will always feel ďsomethingĒ towards XWW. I hate that she did this. I hate that I didnít have a say. We were supposed to be a team. She was supposed to tell me when she wasnít happy. Iím not a mind reader. She wanted out. The problem is I never got the memo until I noticed changes. By then it was too late to fix our marriage. She broke a vow and a promise. I donít trust her....never will. She had already checked out months (if not years) earlier.

^^^^^^ Playing from the same script on this part.

I think it would be so much easier for me to get to the "meh" stage if I could cut off all contact with EXWW, but being co-parents, it's just not possible in the immediate future. I have my weak moments and listen to or ask questions that just hit the right switches and I start the fixation in my head of what went wrong, why me, how could she, etc. Time spans between these backward steps are becoming longer and longer, which is a good sign I guess. It seems like what makes me dredge up all the old baggage is when she brings up, or it gets brought to my attention, by myself or others unaware of situation, her behaviors or words to a similar situation in our past. She accepts behavior from others that was no longer acceptable in ours. Or she contradicts and goes in a 180 degree direction to what she says she wants in her life now. It is stupid to let any of it bother me now, i understand that. I just wish emotions would follow what head says at every single moment.

All I can do at the moment is continue to build a firm boundary between EXWW and myself, and keep co-parenting lines of communications open, but keep shutting down those other embassies of chatter that seem to pop up to regularly.

Newlease posted 3/8/2018 09:24 AM

It takes time to let go and it depends on circumstances of the D, sharing children, etc.

It took me a few years to truly let go. My XWH had an aunt who, the first time I met her, told me this story about how her husband cheated and left her. It was sad. I asked XWH when this happened and he said 30 YEARS AGO. She was speaking about it as if it just happened and she was truly still angry and miserable. She stayed that way until the day she died. It was a terrible waste of a life.

That is what I used as my inspiration to let that shit go. I was determined not to let what happened color my entire life. As I said it took time, but I think the conscious decision to move on was helpful. My user name "Newlease" was not what I was feeling when I chose it, but it was what I wanted to feel - like I had a new lease on life.

XWH still annoys me sometimes when he does something stupid with regard to our grown sons. But I always think to myself, "at least I don't have to live with him when he's annoying me anymore." Cup 3/4 full!


Nycountrystrong posted 3/8/2018 11:03 AM

If people want to call me never forgiving what my STBXWW did to me and my family holding a grudge, so be it. She's not my friend, and as soon as this divorce is finalized I will be damned if I ever talk to her about anything but our kids ever again.

Thats her consequences for cheating on me repeatedly, and all the shit she put our kids through. I gave everything I had for 22 years and she shit all over it and told lies about me to people.

I dont keep her secrets, and wont tell lies to cover her anymore.

[This message edited by Nycountrystrong at 3:44 PM, March 8th (Thursday)]

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