Talk About Marriage banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My wife and I have been together for 10 years, married for 9 with one child and one on the way. We both work, but I do the cleaning, laundry, finances, majority of the child raising. I have given up friends, family, church, career, sex and personal self-satisfaction in an attempt to show her I really do care. We even have started going to therapy. The things I do go unappreciated, and when I do nice things, I get accused of doing them for sex. It seems I may do 100 nice things, but it is the 1 negative thing she remembers. It feels as if I have to maintain perfection. She was sad and depressed when married her, and I thought if I loved her enough, she would be happy. She got better when she went on anti-depressants, but she is off of them because she is pregnant (through fertility treatments). I've lowered my expectations to just simple kindness. I stay because I love my son and I wish my folks had just tried harder. (They split when I was four.) But how can I know that I have tried everything? I don't want to waste my entire life fixing something that can't be fixed? how do I know it is irretrievably broken? If I leave this marraige do I have a chance for happiness? Are there women out there who are genuinely happy and kind and would appreciate the level of love and devotion I have to offer? From what I've seen, I don't think it exists and I continue to fight for what I have invested the last ten years in. I know how much my son loves me and is that enough love to fulfill me? Is that as good as I can expect? Is it worth hoping he will still love me if I tell him he wasn't worth sticking around for in order that I might find something that doesn't exist? Help anyone?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
Is it worth hoping he will still love me if I tell him he wasn't worth sticking around for in order that I might find something that doesn't exist?
First of all, it does exist. But marriage is alot of hard work to keep going.

You say that she got better during the time that she was taking meds for depression. Better as in, your marriage at that time was fulfilling for you?

It's sounding like depression is playing a key role in what's going on. Can you 'wait it out' until she is able to get back on the meds?
Has the counseling been useful?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
She was kinder on the meds. I dont' think she will ever go back on the meds, it was so hard for her to come off of them.

The counseling is helping her see that she has still has past issues to work through from before we even met that effect our marraige today.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
That is a step in the right direction, but it will take some time. Are you getting any benefit from the therapy in terms of understanding/dealing with the issues in your marriage?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,204 Posts
I see what she's getting out of this relationship. What are you getting out of it? I do sympathize with those who have psych. or personality disorders, but if they had these conditions before they married, they presented themselves as capable of participating equally in a married situation.

To answer your question, yes, there are millions of women in the U.S. who would flip for the chance at a decent guy. There are millions outside the U.S. as well. I was in your situation and allowed a woman to diminish and control me until I became positively ashamed of what I had become. I stuck around till my daughter was 13. It was important to me that my daughter be old enough to know me and understand why I had to get out. I never had to tell her. She had eyes. My daughter and I have a much closer relationship now and she actually gets to know "me" and not some beat down, shameful shell of a human being.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Well, the therapy is both helping and hurting.

It is helping us to understand the core issues that are causing us problems.

Is is hurting us because I am starting to see that there is nothing I can do to fix those core problems. At least it feels that way. I knew she had these problems to begin with and I've been trying to fix these problems for 10 years.

I know marraige is hard work. But should it be this hard?

I know I'm not supposed to fix everything and I know this is typically "male" thought patterns.

But I'd like to get to a point where we can not feel so miserable around each other. I'd like to create an environment where she could feel safe to work on her own problems, to help herself be happy.

I know I can't make her happy. All I'm trying to do is please her so she might have the chance at happiness, thus helping our family be happy.

I've all but given up on my own personal happiness. I would be happy if she could be happy.

I know if I don't try everything I can, I will be eternally unhappy when she leaves with my son.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
72 Posts
My wife pulled the same sort of behavior from 2007-2009. I did everything. I worked 100%, cooked EVERY meal and then was expected to do laundry and cleaning and take care of our animals. I finally woke up one day and realized I was just paying her way in life and getting NOTHING out of the relationship.

So I told her I was leaving. That jolted SOME responsibility into her and began helping out and made a plan to get a job. After awhile she stopped again. So I stopped too. Her laundry piled up, dishes she used piled up, she had no spending money and couldn't drive anywhere. She wised up and "snapped out of it" one day.

She used to accuse me of being lazy despite me carrying 99.95% of the relationship - so I showed her what lazy is really all about. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Do you wish you had gotten out earlier?

What am I getting? At this point, I am getting to be around my son whenever I want. I am not getting a painful divorce. I am not having to pay alimony and child support.

Sarcasm aside, I'm not sure what I am getting at all. Maybe I've been so worried about her happiness that I haven't had the time to think about what I was getting. I thought taking care of her happiness would automatically result in my own.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
You can't fix it, but you CAN be there to provide love and support.

No, you aren't getting much at this point, because right now, she doesn't have the capacity to give it to you, not that you don't deserve it.

The way I see it, you have 2 choices. Stick it out and see her through this so that hopefully the outcome will be that she eventually IS able to meet your needs in the marriage.

Or divorce. You already know the outcome of that.

She agreed to counseling, apparently she's in it by her choice. Why not give it some time and see if she makes any progress?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
That's the frustrating dilemma. Do I stick it out hoping that either she/we/I will change for the outside chance of happiness with the more likely outcome being an unhappy marraige or do I rip off the band-aid and cut my losses?

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

At this point, I am on the verge of insanity. At what point am I just a plain old, dumb, sucker?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
I would give anything to have a husband like you. I am married to a man that is like your wife. They are negative people. People who only see what they don't have and not what they do have. People who are never satisfied. No matter what you do they willl find something wrong with it. This makes me feel like darned if I do and darn if I don't. There is nothing wrong with wanting or needing appreciation. You deserve it. I am in the same situation as you. Unhappy but don't want to feel as though Im the one that gave up. Unhappy but need to be sure that I gave it my best shot.

And no this is not normal. There are women out there that would appreciate you. Women who are mentally stable.

Hopefully after she has the baby she can began taking those meds again and things will be back to like they were?. Wishing you the best,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
That's the frustrating dilemma. Do I stick it out hoping that either she/we/I will change for the outside chance of happiness with the more likely outcome being an unhappy marraige or do I rip off the band-aid and cut my losses?
Why do you feel the most likely outcome will be an unhappy marriage? Chances are good that with two willing participants and with the right help, you can get to a happy marriage.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
Exactly, and what you're changing is getting the therapy.

At this point, I am on the verge of insanity. At what point am I just a plain old, dumb, sucker?
Only you can decide if you will stay. Are you still in love with her?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,204 Posts
I don't wish I'd gotten out earlier. I gave everything and then some, invested 12 years. I know, daughter knows, ex wife knows, that I gave it every possible chance for success. The time was right for me. Your wife still works, so apparently she can adjust her behavior in polite society. You might try a firm but fair division of chores and set of rules and basically tell her that you need her to actively participate in the marriage; that if she wants to salvage the relationship, she needs to saw her end of the log. Bear in mind, the woman is pregnant and some of her lethargy might have to do with that. Not sure why you decided to get pregnant again with a woman you've apparently been unhappy with for so long. Not a criticism, just curious.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
I completely relate to your situation because I feel exactly the same way you do,but about my husband. I feel like I give and give and he does nothing. I have given myself fully to the relationship to the point I have lost myself to it. I have tried everything to get him to participate more, but to no end. I think in my situation depression might also play a role because he seems to have little interest in anything. Once he gets home from work he just sits down in front of the tv and doesn't move from the one spot on the couch all night. About two months ago I reached my breaking point and i have been struggling ever since. The responsibility of caring for everything and everyone wore me out. Our marriage has been on the rocks since because I am trying to change things for myself, but I continue forward with the knowledge that I deserve to pay more attention to my own needs. Something that I have started to see in my relationship is that the situation seems to be working fine for him. He seems content and it is me who wants change so it is me who needs to take responsibility for the situation. I have started to look at myself more...How have I contributed to my husbands laziness? Why do I take on everything myself? What do I do for him that I shouldn't? What do I do that allows him to not to do anything? How can I do things differently? What are my boundaries and how am i allowing those boundaries to be pushed? What I have come to see is that I created this dynamic in our relationship as much as he did and that I contribute to things staying the same by continuing to do nothing to change my behavior. Starting to think differently about my problem and approaching things with less blame directed at my husband is helping me to see things clearer. I have a better idea of what I can and can't do to change and what I am and am not willing to live with. I am personally still working on this issue and right now I'm not sure my relationship will be saved, but what I have found is that I can be saved. I have felt much better in just knowing that I have ownership of my life and that I am not a victim of my circumstances, but rather an active participant. I can't change my husband, but I can change myself. I don't have a clear answer for you on what is too much and on how far you can be pushed, but what I can say is if you start looking at your own behavior in the relationship and starting taking more personal responsibility more options will appear in your life. Good luck.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,948 Posts
My wife and I have been together for 10 years, married for 9 with one child and one on the way. We both work, but I do the cleaning, laundry, finances, majority of the child raising. I have given up friends, family, church, career, sex and personal self-satisfaction in an attempt to show her I really do care. We even have started going to therapy. The things I do go unappreciated, and when I do nice things, I get accused of doing them for sex. It seems I may do 100 nice things, but it is the 1 negative thing she remembers. It feels as if I have to maintain perfection. She was sad and depressed when married her, and I thought if I loved her enough, she would be happy. She got better when she went on anti-depressants, but she is off of them because she is pregnant (through fertility treatments). I've lowered my expectations to just simple kindness. I stay because I love my son and I wish my folks had just tried harder. (They split when I was four.) But how can I know that I have tried everything? I don't want to waste my entire life fixing something that can't be fixed? how do I know it is irretrievably broken? If I leave this marraige do I have a chance for happiness? Are there women out there who are genuinely happy and kind and would appreciate the level of love and devotion I have to offer? From what I've seen, I don't think it exists and I continue to fight for what I have invested the last ten years in. I know how much my son loves me and is that enough love to fulfill me? Is that as good as I can expect? Is it worth hoping he will still love me if I tell him he wasn't worth sticking around for in order that I might find something that doesn't exist? Help anyone?
My personal experience.

I was married, my ex only thought that a paycheck would make me happy, so that's what he did. Every month he gave me a paycheck, then nothing else. You can check one of my threads. TWO MEN ONE WOMAN. I tried to tell him I wasn't happy. I felt I was dying, slowly.......After five years, I couldn't take it anymore. I didn't want to kill myself. I was only 29, I still have another good 40 years.

I didn't want to live my whole life like that. I chose to be selfish. I left. I have a son with him. I left everything to him, money, apartment, I left. I didn't want to leave my son, I cried for half a year.

Since I left everything to him, our relationship didn't become sour. I get to see my son every week. I get to see my son grow up and I get to teach my son and shower him with love.

My son was four when we divorced and now he is 13. He is a happy and mature son. For this, I give his father compliments. Morally he taught my son very well. I still help them financially if they need. I tried to ask my son if he hates me for leaving him. He never thinks like this and he knows that Mother wants to be happy. If we are not happy adults, I don't think that benefit our children much.

I got remarried, married to this wonderful Canadian man. I like westerners. They are more romantic in bed and they tend to help at home and they tend to try to understand women. Anyway, I got to meet this wonderful man in my life, we married, we have been living together for seven years, and now I am so happy. Love for my husband is flowing everyday. My husband and my son have a great relationship. They are friends. My son has three adults to shower him with love. His father has realized his mistake also. He treats my husband nicely too. When I see two of them talk to each other, they show each other a lot of respect, I am happy to see.

So four happy people here now.

But everybody's situation is different. We all have religious background!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Only you can decide if you will stay. Are you still in love with her?
Being in love in a marriage ebbs and flows like the tide. When the tide is low, love is a choice. It feels like most days it is a choice to stay. Do I love her? Yes. She is my family. I don't think I have felt that "in love" feeling in a long time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
I completely relate to your situation because I feel exactly the same way you do,but about my husband. I feel like I give and give and he does nothing. I have given myself fully to the relationship to the point I have lost myself to it. I have tried everything to get him to participate more, but to no end. I think in my situation depression might also play a role because he seems to have little interest in anything.
How do people like us that have so much to give end up with those that are so depressed. Do we see how much love we have to give? Do we think we can help them? i agree that depression plays a big role. When we went to therapy today, I was asked what she could do to make me feel loved. I rattled off two or three things. When posed with the same question, she could not think of one thing after 10 minutes of trying to avoid the question! I'm not sure she knows what it is like to truly feel the love of another person! That scares the $*%& out of me!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I don't wish I'd gotten out earlier. I gave everything and then some, invested 12 years. I know, daughter knows, ex wife knows, that I gave it every possible chance for success. The time was right for me. Your wife still works, so apparently she can adjust her behavior in polite society. You might try a firm but fair division of chores and set of rules and basically tell her that you need her to actively participate in the marriage; that if she wants to salvage the relationship, she needs to saw her end of the log. Bear in mind, the woman is pregnant and some of her lethargy might have to do with that. Not sure why you decided to get pregnant again with a woman you've apparently been unhappy with for so long. Not a criticism, just curious.
I thought her unhappiness was due to our fertility problems and our dreams of having a lot of kids. She was happier when we had our first child.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,204 Posts
We can't make people happy. Healthy people are happy if they choose to be. If someone suffers from clinical depression, their unhappiness is the result of chemical and biological problems. In any case, you can't work enough, love enough, earn enough, or spend enough to make someone happy or to make someone love you in return.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
I have given up friends, family, church, career, sex and personal self-satisfaction in an attempt to show her I really do care.
I think that you should take some time for yourself. Try to stay balanced and centered by practicing good self-care behavior and doing things to nurture yourself.

At the same time, be there for her. Be patient, and let her know you care.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top