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Discussion Starter #1
H has a lot of anxiety issues. He also is very manipulative, when we did a weekend marriage program recently he started the weekend by telling me a story about a man he knew who killed himself when his marriage dissolved! Because he was being verbally abusive I chose to leave the home 7 weeks ago. He keeps rubbing my nose in the fact that I hurt our 20 year old son by leaving. Well son was aware of the issues and fine with it. H had a 3 year affair, he put it down to PTSD because his best friend died and he took up with the widow.
Therapists have said that his anxiety drives this type of behavior. He also spent the entire spring yelling at me that I'd be happy when he is dead. My nerves went and I moved out. We share visitation with a 13 yo dd and son lives with h. I'm very confused as to how much of his behavior is choice, and where the line of manipulation occurs?
 

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So sorry to hear about your situation. In my opinion if his behavior is caused by anxiety is he taking steps to control the anxiety through meds/counceling? Or is he behaving as he chooses and blaming it on the anxiety? Second sounds like a whole lot of hurt has been thrown your way, so are you able to forgive and move forward? I would steer clear unless he begins steps to get help. Kids can give us a real good wake up call sometimes, and if your son is 20 I would listen to his opinion. Your kids always want what is best for you and for you to be happy.
 

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Not sure if I'm able to trust again and put my self on the line. He forgets that other people can burn out and just not have anything left to give. He went to IC for anxiety this year but was just given a work book. I will insist that he go for more IC I guess. He calls all the time asking to come over, saying he's lonely. We are doing a relgious MC, yet another attempt to find an answer.
 

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He needs to control himself. If he knows anxiety causes his bad behavior, he needs to work on controlling it.

Put the work on him. You can't do this for him. He must do it for himself. You can be a cheerleader, shoulder to cry on. But make it clear you will not be a punching bag, door may or waste dump.
 

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IC for sure, hopefully identify a root cause and join a support group. Other than encouraging that, he needs to do the next step.
 

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Anxiety/ptsd is no excuse for abuse. It might be driving it but that doesn't give him a free pass and there should be consequences (aka like you leaving and not putting up with it). As long as you buy his excuses it gives him permission to do whatever he wants because well as you know he has ptsd and anxiety. <eye roll>

Experience: I have ptsd and anxiety.
 

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Stick to your guns about staying away until he starts getting help.

If he refuses or gets worse, start talking to a lawyer and get your finances in order. You can't just threaten to divorce him. you have to be prepared to go through with it. If it's just a threat, he will smoke you out. If you are serious, he might, possibly be scared enough to follow through on getting help. But if he is not, do you really want to live your life like that? Better to rip the band aid off.
 

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No I don't want to keep living like this. It's been too many years. I did the hand holding only to have his behavior become more and more aggressive verbally. He's also an attention seeker, always claiming to be sick, with a variety of ailments that never seem to develop into anything real.
He is quite sure that I am coming back. I'm not sure, I will do as advised and insist he continue with his counseling. The funny thing is that as soon as I left he got off the heavy doses of clonazepam and actually stopped napping 3 times a day! He had been living in bed and only coming out to give me grief.
I want a happy life for once, I'm sick of the drama and accusations of not caring enough.
 

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My thoughts re with you Indie cat. I was married 30 years before I left the marital home 4 months ago due to what sounds like very similar circumstances (no affair but verbal and emotional abuse escalating as the years progressed). My H began medication (which he refused to stay on when we were together) and initiated counselling both for himself and as a couple. Yet, although he is trying hard and taking all those steps I still have doubts about a reconciliation. Your thoughts rang true with me - "He forgets that other people can burn out and just not have anything left to give." I understand what a truly confusing time this must be for you ( I know my feelings yo-yo between relief, guilt and indecision) and my only advice would be to give yourself time. I wavered about returning during these months (and still do) but I think that would have been a mistake. Still, only you will know what is right for you. It seems that as time goes on its hard to remember that the bad times were quite bad but I think its important not to forget. You can forgive but as my C says - don't forget or you will make the same mistakes over again. God bless x
 

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Thanks! I really want to go home! We had our kids late so they are still with us, I feel horrible not being with them full time. But I had no choice, I couldn't eat or sleep, cried on the way to work everyday.
He promises that he has changed, but I've heard that before and am wary. Are you going back?
 

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His anxiety might fuel his behavior, but he is choosing to make excuses and not deal with that anxiety. The death of his best friend does not give him permission to hook up with the widow. That's horribly crass of him to think its okay. If he wants to be this woman's knight, then he should go on and save her and quit harassing you.

He sounds like a major gas lighter and blame shifter. Don't fall for his lies. You told him you left because if his behavior, so keep reminding him that you have no desire to hear the option of R at this time since nothing has changed. He's making excuses and you're doing the right thing. If he isn't looking out for your best interests, then you must do so for yourself.

Hang in there.
 

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Thanks. I"m tired of his ptsd line about his affair. He says he wanted to get in his dead friends skin, that he had had a breakdown. Actually a psychiatrist told him this! Well for a breakdown they did a lot of restaurants and he would buy her spa sessions and flowers. How is that a breakdown? Anyway that was over 3 years ago. Now I'm dealing with the verbal abuse and that was really why I left. I did not accept his excuses and could not feel love for him. His anxiety deepened and he starting taking too many sedatives. He wished himself dead and then would accuse me of wanting him dead. It just got too painful to live with him. He claims he's changed now and will never be verbally abusive again. But I'm scared. He's taken a few positive steps, we are in Christian MC. He did finally insist that son pay room and board,which was a big issue for me. So as long as we attend MC and he keeps his word I am willing to keep an open mind. I do want my family back, but not at any cost. He didn't find IC that helpful, they just gave him a workbook and kept going over the past issues but there were no anxiety strategies offered per se.
 

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Hi Indiecat
I don't think I will end up going back but I know exactly what you mean when you say "I want to go Home!" I was SO homesick initially and I still have been unable to make the break into getting my own place (my daughter and I are still staying with family) but I am too scared to go back and find that, despite what H promises and despite his good intentions, that it goes back to the way it was. I don't think I could handle the pain of leaving again.
 

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I hear you. If I do go back and it's all been b.s. then I have promised myself that I'll leave for good. But I'm so torn. It's good that you are with family, I'm alone two days a week and every second weekend. I hate it! Yes I have friends but they are busy with their own lives. I've joined a woman's group, which is good, but they all have had troubled marriages and lives.
If you can make a new life for yourself I really hope you do!
 
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