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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
there is a fairly long story here, but I need to tell somebody. before we got married my wife and I had a very strong relationship. we met at thirteen, got engaged at 18, and set the date at 20 and married at 21. well she's a year older than me but you get the point we have been together our whole lives, we grew up together. though we didn't really have much in common our relationship was based on mutual support we uplift one another. despite everything she has put me through I love my wife, my life revolves around this woman and I cant imagine myself without her. I know her well enough to know she feels the same way. the problem is her family and friends are pushing her to divorce me.

the problems started back when she graduated college her attitude towards me shifted she started seeing herself as better than me and made that clear. at this point I basically shut down went into a nasty depression and regretted every decision I had made to be with her. this all happened a few months before the wedding by the way. eventually this all led to a horrible fight where I called off the wedding stormed out and went to work. after work I went out drinking with a couple of co-workers who were dating at the time, lets just say it ended badly.

after my little indiscretion I held to my word I started looking for my own place and told her very plainly I can't be with someone who sees me as beneath them. after a couple of tear filled nights she made her promises, I made mine, and we decided to go through with it and made the big promise, till death.

things did get better we even started looking at houses. until I got dealt a setback career wise I got fired from my nice salary job. after that I got this attitude of "you cant even hold down a job" worse still all physical contact ceased. things got worse when the only job I could find was as a waiter, I had been working as a restaurant manager. until I got fired from that too, due to an error on my manager's side. it was at this point we decided on counseling we started that about two months ago.

in that time I have done everything she has asked of me and then some. I figure if I want her to be the woman she was two years ago I need to be the man I was two years ago. the problem here is I don't feel like she is putting any effort in. then Friday out of the blue she tells me "I want a divorce" or more specifically she wants me to consent to a dissolution.

I told her then much what I'm saying now. she promised herself to me for the rest of her life which means she has a responsibility to everything possible to make it work. I don't feel that she has put an effort in. until she does over my rotting corpse. in the end after another tear filled conversation she agreed to three more months of marriage counseling doing whatever tasks and exorcises recommended by the counselor, I couldn't think of any other way to define honest effort, after which if she still wants out I will agree to a dissolution. we have this agreement in writing.

the big problem were facing is that it's not just the two of us. when it's just the two of us she starts out shut down emotionally but starts to open up. then she goes and talks to her friends, or her mother and shuts down again. she and I have to basically rebuild our relationship from scratch, but her entire family and social circle. I feel like I should talk to her family but I really don't know what I would say.
 

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Have the two of you been married for 2 years? It's not clear from your writeup.

It's very common for a relationship to fall apart when one partner graduates with a degree higher than what the other has obtained.

My son's father did the same thing.. he acted like he was better than me when he got his MD. (I have a master's degree.) He was also cheating like crazy with any female at the hosptial who go along with it.

YOu and your wife are very young. the divorce rate for women under 25 and men under 30 is HUGE.

If she wants a divorce she does not have to get your agreement. A judge will give it to her.

With her friends and family pushing her to divorce you the chance of success is very low. You would do yourself a huge favor to start focusing on improving yourself. For example, why don't you go to school now? YOu can get financial aid. Start pulling yourself out of the the depressed situation you are in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
because I'm old fashioned. I said my vows and so has she, till death, therefore we have a responsibility to do everything in our power to make it work. I know when we are together she wants to. she has told me this. when she talks to her family she really wants to divorce. when shes alone she gets incredibly conflicted and confused about what to do.
 

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She is very young and immature and thus does not even know her own mind. This is going to be tough.
That still does not change that you can start working to improve yourself.
You have a shot at fixing this. Both will need to change, meeting each other's needs. But the change will most likely have to start from unilateral action. This means that you need to do the work necessary to make real changes in yourself that will cause real changes in your marriage. It sounds like a lot of the anger in your marriage stems from the both of you being very frustrated and not sure how to get your marriage on track.


Here is a list of books that can help you. Often times I find that one good self-help book is worth hours, months, even years of counseling. All of the suggested books are available through Amazon.com and other book sellers and on the web sites of the authors. I suggest that she not see these books nor see you reading them. Otherwise she will get the idea that you are making temporary changes to suck her back into the marriage. This is not about temporary changes just to achieve your goal.

Then this one does a very good job of explaining how to use unilateral action/changes to improve/save your marriage… Divorce Busting: A Step-by-Step Approach to Making Your Marriage Loving Again, Michele Weiner Davis - great for communication, and for taking responsibility and action to improve your quality of life.


Fight Less, Love More: 5-Minute Conversations to Change Your Relationship without Blowing Up or Giving In, Laurie Puhn. - Ways to tackle problems in a common sense way, and open direct, honest communication in areas of conflict.


Fight Less, Love More: 5-Minute Conversations to Change Your Relationship without Blowing Up or Giving In


The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country's Foremost Relationship Expert, John Gottman. - Ideas and activities to go through to understand each other more and strengthen your bond together.


“His Needs, Her Needs” and “Love Busters”, Dr. Harley… good guides for how to meet each other needs and rebuild to a passionate marriage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
She is very young and immature and thus does not even know her own mind.
no argument here! I very much love my wife, but she is, and probably always will be, a scared little girl. she has been sheltered for most of her life. she has never had to sacrifice for someone else which makes her unable to compromise.

when it comes down to it though this is the source of a lot of our problems. my wife is a very timid and anxious woman she's never had to face failure, so it terrifies her. she needs a strong leader to take charge and tell her what to do. through my depression I stopped being that for her. she felt the weight of the world on her shoulders. now she feels that weight would be less without me.

honestly a part of me thinks she would be better off without me. that this would give her the chance to grow up. this will never happen until she falls. then I could be right there to pick her up.

as for focusing on me, I have started taking nat mur for my depression. as well as seeking a counselling on my own. I've also quit smoking, which aside from being a huge point of contention between us, it is a kind of symbol for me. tying me to a long list of regrets.
 

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no argument here! I very much love my wife, but she is, and probably always will be, a scared little girl. she has been sheltered for most of her life. she has never had to sacrifice for someone else which makes her unable to compromise.

when it comes down to it though this is the source of a lot of our problems. my wife is a very timid and anxious woman she's never had to face failure, so it terrifies her. she needs a strong leader to take charge and tell her what to do. through my depression I stopped being that for her. she felt the weight of the world on her shoulders. now she feels that weight would be less without me.
Throughout your relationship you wife was first a child and now a very young adult. She’s what? 23? You are younger. She does not need “a strong leader to take charge and tell her what to do”. That sounds like you try to control her. Maybe that’s what her friends and family see that makes them want her away from you. What a 23 year old kid needs is the freedom to grow up and mature into an adult who takes responsibility for their own life.
The human brain does not complete its’ development until about the age of 26. Until that age young adults make really bad decisions.. hence things like high insurance rates, high crime rates, etc in that population.
Because of the changes a person goes through between high school and their late 20’s, marriages seldom work out. She is changing and maturing. Hopefully you are as well. This is most likely what is going on … coupled with her not having gone through college.
honestly a part of me thinks she would be better off without me. that this would give her the chance to grow up. this will never happen until she falls. then I could be right there to pick her up.
Honestly it will give both of you a chance to grow up. If she grows up….. she will pick herself up. You need to comes to terms with this.

as for focusing on me, I have started taking nat mur for my depression. as well as seeking a counselling on my own. I've also quit smoking, which aside from being a huge point of contention between us, it is a kind of symbol for me. tying me to a long list of regrets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
I've been on my own since I was 14 years old. before that I was my fathers primary caretaker. I was responsible for holding my family together since before I event met my wife. so yes, compared to my life experiences my 23 year old wife, who has never had to stand on her own two feet, is very young.

I have never been controlling toward my wife, on the contrary even her friends say she's the demanding one. when there is a real decision to be made, she gets indecisive and I make the call. the problem is two years ago I stopped doing that. I stopped leading and started following. in counseling we discussed needs. needs that we have that are not being met. this was on her list. hell it was her list.

what her friends and family see is a 22 year old guy, who despite 6 years in college has nothing to show for it. I work 55 hour weeks and after paying my bills can only afford a part time coarse load. on top of that I failed some classes. they see who worked in a drive through for 3 years. 2 of them as a supervisor. who got fired from a "real job", assistant manager in fast casual, then couldn't make it as a waiter. long story there, bottom line they have been reported to the labor board.

for the record I was not out of work the second time. I went straight to a temp service. eventually I landed an entry level job and got promoted in a month.

right now her family sees me as a massive looser. they also see her agreeing to continue counseling as a massive weakness.
 

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I've been on my own since I was 14 years old. before that I was my fathers primary caretaker. I was responsible for holding my family together since before I event met my wife. so yes, compared to my life experiences my 23 year old wife, who has never had to stand on her own two feet, is very young.

I have never been controlling toward my wife, on the contrary even her friends say she's the demanding one. when there is a real decision to be made, she gets indecisive and I make the call. the problem is two years ago I stopped doing that. I stopped leading and started following. in counseling we discussed needs. needs that we have that are not being met. this was on her list. hell it was her list.
If it was on her list... it just show her immaturity more.

Yes a woman wants a strong man. But she has to be able to stand on her own two feet. And she's still not doing it because she's letting her family pull her one way and you the other. She needs to make up her own mind.

You are going through your wife growing up... it's growing pains.
 
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