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Blind-
I can feel your pain. I am in a similar situation with my husband. We have been married just over 7 years and he wants a divorce. The years have been a roller coaster, but I never thought he would give up on us. A few months ago he said he was thinking about it. I began to panic. And my worse fear is coming true. He saw a lawer on monday and he has made a list of who should get what in the house. He has not filed yet, but I know it's coming. I don't want this at all. But when someone doesn't or isn't willing to put in the effort to work on a marriage there is nothing the other person can do. I have been trying everything! I am physically ill over this situation. I cry everyday. I just wish he wanted to get "us" back and was willing to get help to get it.
 

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Blind- I have read all of your posts and the advice you have been given. I don't have any for you, as others have taken care of that for me. I too want to thank you for admitting your faults. That to me takes a real man to admit. I really hope things can look up for you, your wife and your children! Sounds like you love her more than words can describe, hopefully it's not to late for her to see that. Has the birthday thing came up yet? If not, it may be a good idea to give her that as a present outside of her birthday...not saying to rush things, but maybe that will show her how much you want her to be herself! Keep us posted!
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Thanks again for all the advice and support. Here is an update.

We went to Steamboat, CO for a ski trip with my best friend (see original post) and his wife. Ideally I would have rather gone with just my wife and son, but the trip was planned well in advance of all of this blowing up. Anyway, the trip had some high and low points. In the end, it was probably a postive thing. She and I were able to talk a few times without all the distractions that usually interupt us (kids, phone, work, etc.). She still won't come out and say that she wants this all to work out, but she hasn't spoken to a lawyer and I don't gather that she has any immediate plans for leaving. No doubt she has given it some thought, but I don't think she wants it to end just yet.

When we talk she continually comes back to the thought that she doesn't know if my changes are permanent or temporary. This gives me some hope because I do intend to make a positive permanent change and make her a top priority. If that is what she needs, then I can provide it. Also, it tells me that she is willing to wait and see how I have changed and to see if the changs are permanent. This means she is willing to give this some substantial time. Atleast I hope this is a correct interpretation of what she is telling me.

Her birthday is next week. I have planned out several of the items for the birthday idea and today purchased some of the items/activities. I plan to give it to her on or before Saturday (assuming I can get everything in order between now and then).

As long as I can keep my emotions under control, our time together is pleasant. But, once in a while my emotions get the best of me (we don't yell, but when I loose control I cry and she clams up). For instance, the evening before our last night of skiing I gave her a mustard seed necklace (you know, if you have the faith of a grain of mustard seed you can move mountains). She liked it. I guess I ignorantly expected her to tell me she wanted this all to work and give me some assurance that things would be okay. As I should have expected, she again told me that she has felt this way for years and that it will take time before she knows what she really wants. I don't think I really showed it, but this started the hurting all over again. The next morning (our last day of skiing) I woke up (after what little sleep I was able to get) crying and hurting. Many mean things were running through my head. In fear I would say something I didn't mean or that I would regret, I grabbed my gear and headed out the door to ski by myself and collect my thoughts. I actually had a really good time skiing by myself (the 24 inches of fresh powder didn't hurt things either). She took this as me getting to do what I wanted at her expense. She stewed over this for a day or two. Finally she asked why I left that morning, so I told her. I think she understood. I just wish we could communicate more effectively. In other words, after a bit of cooling off, I wish we could calmly approach the other and say "Hey, I didn't appreciate you leaving, why did you do that?" We talked about communication some. She has a hard time telling me how she really feels because for so long she has held it in. Hopefully she understands I have a sincere interest in her feelings and that I can only react in a positive and constructive way if she tells me how she feels. I told her I can't read her mind, but I am truly interested in her thoughts and feelings.

Soooooo, are we headed in the right direction? I don't know for sure, but it feels a little better in my heart than it has for the past several weeks.

Thanks again.
 

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You have not lost...your both still together and still love one another. That's your starting point. I sincerely believe the two of you should attend therapy together. She needs to know how very serious you are about sharing your life with her and your family and not your hobbies. You need to be reassured that she wants to continue with your marriage. Therapy will force both your feelings out in the open and on the table. Knowing where you stand with one another is knowing what can be done to keep your relationship strong. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
debrajean - I agree that we should be in therapy together. Her therapist wanted her to see him for 1 month before we go to a therapist together. I didn't really agree with this, but I am not a therapist and I must trust his judgment. He also told her that a happy marriage is the top priority. As an attorney, my clients sometimes disagree with me on issues but usually will trust my judgment. In the end they are glad they did. I hope the same rings true for her therapist's advice.

With regard to loving one another, there is no doubt that I love her dearly. I am not wholly convinced that she loves me. She tells me she does, but only after I say it first. When she responds, it just doesn't feel as convincing as it did before. Hopefully I am just being overly sensitive to her actions and have misinterpreted her true feelings.

Unless the schedule has changed, she is going to her therapist today after she gets off work. I am hopeful that he will now suggest couples therapy.

BTW - I gave her the birthday present last night. I didn't really know how she would react. I had gone to bed before her and just put it under the covers on her side of the bed. She found it and was able to read about all the different days that were planned for her. She said it was a very neat and thoughtful gift. I do believe that she liked it.

Well, I'll keep my fingers crossed that we are headed in the right direction.

Thanks for the continued input.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
For anyone still reading this thread, here is another update. Maybe I should start a new thread, but for now I'll just post here.

Last week went fairly well, atleast from an observer's view point. I was able to keep my emotions in check and tried to be supportive of her and the kids. But, over the weekend she and I both had a break down. Friday night she just broke down into tears. I felt bad for her, put the kids to bed, and gave her some time and space. Saturday was okay but I could not sleep and basically stayed up most of the night. I got a little sleep on the couch, but when I woke up Sunday I was hurting very bad. We didn't fight at all over the weekend, but Sunday I was very quiet. I just couldn't act like things were okay anymore. My pastor even called to see how I was doing because he could tell I was hurting.

Last night she and I had a long talk. We were both very considerate, no mean words were said, but both of us were hurting very badly. She finally told me that she doesn't love anymore. She said her prayers were that what ever happens that our children will be okay and the I will stay in church. My prayer, on the other hand, is that God will help us through this tough time and our marriage will be stronger in the end. We both feel that in the past several weeks, with both of us seeing different therapists, that things are getting worse. Although I think she was reluctant, she again agreed to see a therapist together. We are making an appointment for next week, and I believe she will follow through this time. I told her that I firmly believe that people can fall in love the same person again. She said she hasn't been able to do marriage counseling because she is sorely afraid that the things she has to say will be devastating to me. I told her I had no choice but to try and save our marriage and that I would just have to handle whatever she has to say as best that I can. We ultimately concluded that sooner or later we are going to have to get all these feelins, good and bad, out on the table and that we might as well get started.

Aside from the obvious concerns of losing my wife, I am deeply concerned for our children. Our son is 5 and our daughter is 1. My parents divorced when I was 5. I have memories of not wanting to see my father, and then after seeing my father, not wanting to go home to my mother. I don't know how to handle the thought of my son and daughter going through the same thing. I also don't know how to handle the thought of all the things in my childrens' lives I will miss if we divorce. I know I will do my best to be a good father and be involved in their lives, but I also know there will be many things I will miss. For instance, last night my children were playing together and my daugther started laughing extremely hard at the things my son was doing. These little things happen without notice and if you aren't there you miss it. My father missed alot of my childhood. I still love him and he is a good friend. But, he still doesn't know me the way my mother does because he just wasn't around me as much.

I know people get through these things, but I just can't seem to understand how. I would like to hear from some you out there that have been through divorce with children and how you handled some of these situations. Thank you.
 

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Well I’m still here.....I have read everything.......Your past self sounds just like my husband right now, this is his second marriage. We have been together for 13 years and man I feel like your wife. I commend you on your efforts, you need to hear that, you are doing the best that you can. Stay strong…………I don’t have any advice for you only that keep working at it. Love does come and go, and she just needs time.


The sun will shine again…. I’m giving you a pat on the back and (ata boy). Because not all men would stand up and take the blame that you have…. But remember there are 2 people in a relationship and we all make mistakes. And we teach people how to treat us.
Cyber Hug
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
MyKidsMom - Thank you for the kind words. I am sorry to hear your husband has made some of the same mistakes I have. I've not been one to give advice to others at this point because I don't feel like I have any real words of wisdom to give regarding marriage and relationships. I don't know all the details of your situation (however I did read some of your posts). But, let me say this, I have wandered through the last several years of my marriage being BLIND. I have done a great deal of thinking about how I became so ignorant of my wifes feelings. While I am trying my best to accept full responsibility for my actions, I honestly believe that I am not the only one at fault for the martial problems my wife and I are experiencing. No I am not recanting on my admission that I have screwed up. Please hear me out. As we go through life we are going to make mistakes and people WILL get hurt. It is just our human nature. We aren't perfect and don't make the right decisions every time. My point is this: I know I did not put my wife first when I should have. But, as hard as I have tried at times, I am not a mind reader. We must communicate effectively with our spouses when something causes us to become upset. My wife and I do not communicate effectively. It takes two to have effective communication. For so long she acted as though things were fine. In my blindness, I just assumed everything was, in fact, okay. Finally, she let me know that she has felt this way so long that (1) She doesn't know if she wants our marriage to work and (2) She really doesn't love me anymore. I firmly believe our current situation could have been avoided if we communicated effectively years ago. I believe the things making her unhappy could have been readily addressed long before the love faded. Yes it can be difficult to tell someone how you truly feel. Yes it can be difficult to get their undivided attention. Yes it can be difficult to convince the other person that these issues are serious and must be addressed. But, we must communicate effectively because our marriages and happiness hang in the balance. Looking back my wife brought this up only a few times. But, it would seem to pass. I needed her to set me down, and calmly but sincerely explain how she felt, letting me know the gravity of the situation. She will agree that for some reason she can't talk to me. She is in counseling for this (among other issues). This Wednesday I am going to counseling with her so she can try and start talking to me about her feelings more openly. I have been told this session is for HER and not US. This is hard to take as I originally thought that this was the beginning of our marriage counseling. There again, we weren't able to communicate effectively and I was under the misunderstanding that we were starting marriage counseling. All the while, she knew this was counseling for her and not us.

MyKidMom - are you still with me? I know this is the long way around to saying you must do your very best to effectively communicate to your husband your feelings, concerns, and needs. Maybe you have already done this and he refuses to hear it. But, it may be worth another try. I can't imagine ending a marriage without being convinced that I did everything in my power to save it. If my marriage ends, I will be devastated. But, I will at least be able to find comfort in knowing (1) I did all I could once I knew there were problems and (2) I have learned a great deal and won't make the same mistakes again.

Now for a little update on my life. The weekend was uneventful. Anymore, this is a good thing. My wife and I spent some time together over the weekend. Nothing intimate or mushy, just kind of hanging out with the kids and watching a few movies after they went to bed. Weekends like this are so very bitter sweet. I got to spend some time with her, see her smile and laugh a few times, and watched her sleep for a little while. This makes me feel good in part and then the next moment my heart begins pounding and the hurt resets. I want so badly to take her in my arms and kiss her lips. I know you all don't know her, but her beauty is quite striking. This might be a little corny, but her head smells wonderful. Anyway, I just want to be able to love her openly. I know this isn't what she needs right now and do my best to control these feelings. I still tell her she is beautiful and that I love her. I am helping out more with the kids and the house. I am trying not to smother her. This morning when I told her bye and headed to work I gave her a hug and quick kiss. She hugged me back and I felt like she squeezed a little harder than she had been. Maybe she didn't, but it felt like it to me. I got to smell her hair and feel her pressed against me for a few moments. It warmed me a little on the inside.

I still cry almost everyday. I recover a little quicker and have been able to hide it a little better. I know she needs me to be strong and supportive but my heart still hearts most of the time. The hurt isn't as bad as it was. I am beginning to be able to sleep better. I still wake up several times a night, but I am able to go back to sleep. I am slowly being able to concentrate better at work. I am very fragile right now, but I think I'm getting stronger. I appreciate that it would not take much to put me into another tail spin, but I pray I can continue to be patient, grow, find some confidence, and push forward.

It helps me just to write things in this thread. The little bits of feedback and advice also help. This has become a journal of sorts for me. Thanks for reading.
 

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I am sorry to hear your husband has made some of the same mistakes I have. I've not been one to give advice to others at this point because I don't feel like I have any real words of wisdom to give regarding marriage and relationships.
Are you kidding? You are a person who knows what he did wrong and struggled through problems. This is a peer helping peer forum. How many people have said "I have been there too"?

draconis
 

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Are you kidding? You are a person who knows what he did wrong and struggled through problems. This is a peer helping peer forum. How many people have said "I have been there too"?

draconis
I agree!! You have admitted your problems, know what you did wrong and are trying to FIX it! Sounds like you are qualified to me!
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
I haven't posted on this thread in a few days, but it feels like its time to give an update. Again, this thread has become a journal of sorts for me and I find it is helpful to post here just to get my thoughts and feelings expressed. Also, typing this out helps me separate my real feelings from those that are more temporary and superficial. I've read back over some of my prior posts and have been able to see how my feelings and thoughts have progressed and changed.

Wednesday I went with my wife to see her therapist. The point of the meeting was to have him help her talk to me. Communication has certainly been a very weak point of our marriage. I am quickly realizing that communication was a bigger problem than I first expected. I learned from this session that she has felt neglected for a very long time. She feels I have put almost everything in my life above her. I don't think I realized just how long she has had these feelings. Also, when she tried to communicate with me I didn't hear her. At some point, she quit trying to tell me how she felt and just began holding it all in. Recently she reached a breaking point where she just couldn't take it anymore. Her love for me changed. She has come to the conclusion that we have just been cohabitating. She can't go on this way. Something must give. I need to be listening to her and she needs to be communicating her feelings. I know this will be difficult for us both. She has grave doubts that I can hear her feelings and is even more doubtful that I can make permanent changes in making her a priority. She is at a cross-roads. Down one path is divorce and down the other is working on our marriage and giving me a chance to show her I can and will make positive, permanent changes. One of her most significant fears is that by giving me a chance and working on our marriage she is putting herself out there in a very vulnerable condition. She feels that if I don't follow through on my promised changes that she will fall back into holding her feelings in and will be crushed all over again.

I believe we will be starting marriage counseling in the next few weeks. Her therapist is encouraging her to do this and I welcome it. I still believe there are many things she hasn't yet had the strength or desire to tell me. I know it will hurt and be difficult to hear, but I believe I must know just how she feels and how deeply my actions have hurt her. I pray we each give this an ernest effort. We've got a very long road ahead of us. I know these things take months and often years. At this point I am willing to go the distance. I must accept that in the end our marriage may not work. However, my feeling is that we must put forth our best effort to find out. In the end, good or bad, I think this will be a growing opportunity for us both. If she and I are ever going to be able to have a healthy relationship (even if our marriage fails) we must learn how to effectively communicate and react appropriately to the information received. We both love our children dearly and our lives will be connected on some level regardless of the outcome. I expect that divorce requires a significant amount of effective communication to make the best of it for us and our children. Also, if we do divorce, given that we are both in our 30s, I expect we will eventually find someone else. Through this experience, I believe we would both be better companions.

Please don't get me wrong, I am no where near throwing in the towel. However, as stated above, I must realize that this may not work. In a way, this motivates me even more to try and do every thing I can to again gain her love, trust, and companionship in a good marrage. Kind of a rising to the occassion situation. I don't think I could put my whole heart and soul into this if I just assumed everything would work out and this would all blow over. I must appreciate all the possible results. I can't just focus on what I have to lose, but I must also focus on all I have to gain. I know my wife can love in amazing ways. Her heart and patience run very deep. Many women would have packed up and left long ago. When her touch and words are loving, it can make me feel so wonderful. I have so much to gain be giving my very best effort. I pray that at some point she can also feel that she has something wonderful to gain in giving me an opportunity to prove that I can change and more importantly that I WANT to change.

My days are still up and down. I am sure this will be the case for a good while. I must honestly say that my needs aren't being met. I appreciate and am trying to accept that her needs need to come first at this point. My needs are affection, time alone with her, and intimacy. I can't expect her to give me these things right now. She must first feel she can trust me to follow through on my promises. Just typing this makes me realize I haven't effectively communicated to her what my needs are. As I learned in our joint session, she feels as though she has been doing everything she was "supposed" to do. She has let me enjoy my hobbies and friends. She has spent many days and nights alone while I was fishing, riding ATVs, shooting trap/skeet, etc. etc. She hasn't been a very affectionate person towards me for some time. This wasn't clear to me until recently. When we dated, I was the person that was always holding her hand, touching her hair, brushing up against her in the hall, initiating kisses and sex. This was fine because she reciprocated. As time went on, I still did these things but she slowly stopped reciprocating. Looking back I believe I began finding more comfort and enjoyment in being with my friends and taking part in my hobbies than being with her. As her needs were going unnoticed and grossly unmet, she slowly stopped showing affection for me. The less affection I felt from her, the more I wanted to do other things. I see this as a vicious circle. I accept that I started the process and take responsibility for that.

I believe the vicious circle can be reversed. It will take time as it is spining very quickly and there is significant inertia. But as the cycle slows it becomes easier to stop and eventually reverse. As her needs are being met I pray she will again want to slowly begin trying to meet my needs. If my needs are slowly being met I wll be that much more motivated to meet her needs. Another vicious cycle can start but this time in a loving, caring, and healthy direction.

One thing I must do at some point is communicate my needs to her. I hope the therapist can help facilitate this and I hope I can rely on him to help me know when the time is right. I don't believe I have ever really communicated what my needs were. In the beginning she met my needs and it may have been unknowingly. I don't know if she understands what my needs really are. I also take responsibility for this failure in our communication.

I know I get long winded. If you made it this far, thanks. If you didn't, you won't be reading this sentence, but I understand. Thanks again for the support, advice, comments, and perspective.
 

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Well I so applaud you BLIND. You are truly an amazing man. Coming to a forum and telling your story, not only helping yourself as you admitted, kind of your own therapy, but letting us give our opinions as well. I also want you to be so proud of yourself, for even realizing what you did to cause where you are now in your life. And even more, that you are trying everything in your power to fix this... You have come very far my friend. You do know it takes a great man to not only describe but actually take responsibility for his actions. I am happy you two are exploring options in saving this relationship for yourselves and the kids. You not only owe it to yourselves but your children as well. I believe you are both working in the right direction. I would like to help you as well in a differnet way if you would let me. I see that you are eager to try everything possible to save your sacred marraige and I am so over joyed for that especialy becuase of the young children. I love your idea for her birthday. And I relaize you don't want to come off as buying her affection. Which is awesome. However may i ask when is the last time you truly seduced and romanced her? Have you thought of this approach and if so have you tried to apply and consistantity to it?
Would you be open to some ideas? If so please let me know.
I wish you lots of luck.

Gina Grey
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Gina, thank you for your post.

It has been about 6 days since I last posted here. In those 6 days the roller coaster has really had some ups and downs. One day I do pretty well, and the next my spirits really down. I am pretty low in spirit right now and I am finding it hard to get a foot hold. I don't know if this is the bottom, but it can't be too far away.

A couple of days ago my wife and I were able to talk a little bit. I came away pretty hurt. Her demeanor was calm and neither of us were combative. I suppose we had some effective communication, but what I heard was painful. I don't suppose this surprises me as I know this process is very diffcult. I told her I believe two people can fall in love again. She said she believes they can if they WANT to. She said she feels as though she just can't try anymore. She told me she is worried about our son and also me losing many of the things I mentioned somewhere in one of my above posts (church, friends, house, etc. etc.). She said she doesn't know how much time she should give this to be fair to me and our son. I got mixed signals, but trying to be objective, my impression is that her mind is made up that she wants a divorce but she doesn't know when would be the best time when considering me and our son. Again, this was my impression and I certainly could be interpreting what she told me in the wrong way. I appreciate that I am hurting right now and that this can color and skew her words. I told her I still loved her and she said she could tell because of the changes I am making.

All of that being said, we have a marriage counseling appointment next week. In our small town, we don't have many options on therapists. With her work and our children, she isn't really able to travel to another town for counseling. The therapist we are going to see is the same person she has been seeing on an individual basis. This makes me a bit uncomfortable, but I feel I must give it a try as it appears to be our only option, and we obviously aren't gaining any ground on our own. I mentioned above that I went with her last week to see this therapist for an appointment for her, not us. Frankly, I kind of like the guy.

Over the past week or so I feel like my wife is withdrawing even more from me and our marriage. I suppose this is why I came away from our recent talk with the impressions that I have. I am still committed to making the changes I have promised her. It will get tough at times, but giving up will only bring about all those things I fear the most.

My greatest concern now is that she will not be willing to give this the time that it needs for her to trust that the positive changes I am making are here to stay. I believe she is scared of letting herself fall in love with me again because she fears I will then revert back to my old ways. Then she would be going through all of this again and be very hurt for yet another time.

We have not been intimate for a couple of months. About one month ago I tried to be very sensual with her when we had an evening together after the kids had gone to bed. It ended in her crying. This is when I learned she doesn't "love me the way I need to be loved." I learned that night that she is not "in love" with me. No attempts have been made by either of us to be intimate since then.

Before Valentine's Day I read on this or another forum about a sensual massage. They called it a "compass massage" but I don't think that is a well known name for any specific type of massage. Anyway, the method I read about involved blind folding her and slowly and sensually removing her clothing. I bought massage oil for the massage. In short, the information I read described a slow and loving massage of her entire body divinding it in to four quadrants (North, South, East and West - hence the name "compass massage"). The blind fold is to help eliminate one of the senses, so the body's other senses are more acute and aware. It described this as taking an hour or more. I had hoped to do this on Valentine's Day or Friday after. I didn't even intend for it to end up with sex, I just wanted to do it for her to let her know I could love her through sensual touching that didn't require sex. Valentine's Day was not good for us and the weekend following was not all that great either. She was very distant and withdrawn. I never gave her the massage and never mentioned anything about it to her.

So, to answer your question, yes I have considered trying to seduce and romance her. But, I haven't tried it and fear it may push her further away. I don't want to smother her right now. However, I am certainly open for any suggestions and thoughts you may have. That is one of the reasons I started this thread.

Thanks for the input, if you would rather respond via PM, that would be appreciated.

Blind
 

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I think your wife was taking you for granted. That happens a lot in marriages, we get comfortable and feel like our partner is not going anywhere. While you were keeping your half of the bargain she was busy with her own thing. I'm glad you relaized that a relationship will only work if both parties work together and she notices the change. It's unfortunate that we have to play games but it makes the other person realize what they might loose. When I am angry with my husband talking doesn't always help because he really doesn't want to hear me at the moment. So I continue to live my life as normal as possible almost like he was not a factor in my life. You should see how quickly he comes to his senses. All of a sudden he is apologizing for what ever he did at that time. You seem to be a caring person and you love your wife dearly. One word advice is, love yourself first. Show confindence in yourself and maybe your wife will realize how lucky she is to have you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Well here is where our situation is currently. We recently had another talk. I let her go first and let me know how she is feeling. She is telling me that things are very real for her right now and that she just feels numb. She sees only two options. First, she can simply cohabitat with someone that she no longer chooses to be with. Second, she can get out of our marriage. She told me she just can't try any more and that she doesn't believe she can go on cohabitating. So, she concluded that the marriage is "final"

If you've ever loved someone with all of your heart and they tell you that they no longer choose to be with you and that they want free of the marriage, then you know how I have been feeling the past few days. I didn't know the human body could feel so many emotions at one time. I literally go from smiling one moment at my children to the next moment where I slip into the other room so they don't see me fall apart crying.

I didn't break down and cry while we were talking. I didn't sleep but a couple of hours that night. On the way to work the next day is when I came apart. A very relevant song came on the radio and here came the tears. After she told me how she felt I responded by saying that I am still commited to my changes. I still love her and that for the first time she will be getting from me what she never had before. I told her I just need a chance to prove my changes are real and see if she can learn to trust that these changes permanent. I told her that as her needs are being met that she may be able to find some strength to try and save the marriage and love me again. I said that I didn't expect an answer to the next question. I then asked if she would give me a chance now that I understand how she has felt for so long. It hurts to think I finally get it and don't have chance to try and make the marriage happy and loving. She didn't answer, but we have agreed to keep our couples therapy appointment this coming week. I don't know what either of us expects from it.

Weeks ago I didn't know if I could find the strength to continue on and a part of me wanted to give up. Now I don't know if I will be able to stop trying. I don't want to give up all hope. If there is any chance or hidden hope that things can possibly work out to save our marriage, I don't want to do anything to thwart them. Also, assuming our marriage is over, I know she will be facing a world of new challenges and hurdles in being a single mother of two. She'll need support and assistance. I intend to give it to her if for no other reason than I failed her before. I don't want to fail her and my children anymore. I know this will be emotionally and physically taxing. I'll have to find the strength to carry on.

On thing I am stuggling with the most now is my children. They are wonderful and very loved by my wife and I. At times it is hard for me to be around them because I feel the tears well up in my eyes and have to leave to room. They don't need to see me in that condition. I suppose this happens because I know how much they will have to go through (my parents divorced when I was 5 which is how old my son is now). Also, I know I'll miss them dearly.

While I was sitting at the kitchen table today, my son crawled up in my lap and laid his head on my chest. He just currled up in a ball and pressed against me. I hugged him tightly. This went on for 10-15 minutes. He often gives me hugs and says he loves me. We have a great relationship. But, this was the first time in several weeks, if not a couple of months, that I received more lengthy, uncompromised and honest affection from anyone. I have talked to some of my friends about what is going on. They love me too. I am not too proud to give my male friends a hug. They try to help, but the affection I long for is from my immediate family. After my son hopped back down, I went to the bathroom and came all apart. I am learning what lonely is and will have to learn to deal with how it feels.

That's all for now. I'll keep posting if anything changes. Thanks for all the support. I'll probably need more now than ever.

Blind
 

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Dear Blind,

How are you and your wife doing? Today is the first time that you read your postings and here is what I see.

Sometimes people find themselves in a push pull relationship. Visualize a pole between the two of you. If one person pushes the pole, the other moves away and vise versa. How do you get rid of the pole? Be authentic with your emotions to each other and be emotionally available. Sometimes people find themselves in this situation because they are emotionally insecure or because they realize they are loosing something that they took for granted.

If you respect yourself and your partner you will avoid a push pull relationship. In your situation, it sounds like you took your wife for granted until she gave up. When she started to pull away, you realized what you were loosing and woke up. Be grateful that realized what you were loosing and what you were doing to your marriage even if your wife cannot let go of the hurt.

Emotions are amazing and most people learn to be resilient. It sounds like your wife woke up and realized that she doesn’t have to settle for someone that isn’t emotionally available to her. Be grateful that you woke up even if you woke up too late for this relationship. On the bright side, you woke up, and therefore hopefully, you will be a better husband or partner in future relationship.

I have one last question, are you emotionally available to your children? I suggest looking in all areas of your life that you may have neglected. Just remember, it doesn’t matter what happens in life, it is how you handle it that counts. If you truly love your wife, you will love her unconditionally. Best wishes.
 

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Dear Blind,

Chin up! It's not over yet! Play with your children and try to be happy. Learn from your mistakes and just do what you can to clean up prior messes. Once your wife sees you are going to be happy with or without her, she may find you more attractive.

Just a few hints to catch the attention of your wife:
1) Be physically eye-catching by being bathed daily, fresh hair cut, shaven, splash on an awesome cologne (try Cool Water Cologne by Davidoff for Men, its great!) and update your wardrobe. Fix your self up the same way you would if you were dating someone. Be at your best - be polished, be classy! Yes, on the weekends too!

2) Be happy! I know it is hard at times, but fake it if you have to. Optimism and happiness is sexy! Play with the kids, plan family events, go out, laugh and have fun. Try to get your wife to join you and the kids and just focus on enjoying the moments together.

3) Tell your wife about the massage oil and blind fold. That sounds extremely exciting. Maybe take her out to dinner. Go dancing and have a few drinks. Take your wife out on a date and leave the past behind, live in the present moment and create new memories. It is possible that everything can turn around and your relationship will be better then ever! Be patient.

Allow yourself to authentically feel your emotions but give it a time limit each day. When appropriate, let the pain from this experience pass through you. If you try to block pain and don't let yourself truly feel the experience, it will not pass and it will spring up when you least expect it. Take the time to process your emotions and to learn from this experience.

I hope this helps some. I am impressed that you have reached out and expressed yourself as fully as you have. If you and your wife can turn this around, you could have the marriage that others dream about. Be patient. :catfly:
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 · (Edited)
Goodkat, thanks for the advice and encouraging words.

Sunday my wife and I talked again. Nothing really new was expressed by either of us, but a few things were clarified. She still sees the only option she can live with is being divorced. She just can't go on in what she sees as cohabitation. She is going to give this some time. I asked if she is giving this time to see if maybe we can work out some of our problems and try to save the marriage or if she just doesn't thinkg it is the right time to separate. She said if she is being honest she wants to give this time because she doesn't want us to seperate while our son is still in school and thinks we should wait until summer. Obviously not what I wanted to hear, but atleast she was being honest. I suppose this gives me a few months to continue giving her what I should have been giving her all along. Maybe, just maybe, she'll find a little strength to try and work toward saving the marriage. I think if she could find even a small amount of love for me that she would be willing to try and rekindle something more between us. If she can't find the strength to try, the next few months will be extremely difficult just waiting for us to separate. If we don't have a chance, my children must come first. I agree we shouldn't separate while my son is in school. Also, when summer comes, my wife will be better able to begin making the adjustment to being a single mother without having to worry about work (she is a teacher and will be off for the summer).

Spring break is coming up and my wife will be off work for a week. I hope she can use this down time to do some soul searching. Her life is very hectic right now and I think it can be hard to really think about the changes she is considering. Also, I don't think anyone can truly appreciate what divorce does to men, women and children until after the fact. If we divorce I hope we don't wake up one day down the road an regret what has happened. We will do our very best to help our children adjust. But, we can't predict how they will turn out and just how this will affect them. I can only look at my brother and I and how my parent's divorce affected us. My brother had a very hard time and made poor decisions that still affect him. I won't go into all he has done and been through. I felt like I adjusted pretty well, but looking back at how I handled marriage I am now wondering just how much my parents divorce affected how I approached marriage.

I do not want to debate religion in this thread, but I think that giving everyone a little bit of information on my beliefs may help explain a few things. First, I believe to divorce is sin and against God's will. Second, I believe that after divorce it is adultery to remarry. If our marriage ends in divorce, I will not be able to remarry or be intimate with another woman without going against God's will. This was my only chance and it appears I have wasted it. I am not looking for other opinions on religion, God, the Bible, etc. etc. There are few things I believe so strongly in. Please don't try to change my mind or try and have me question my beliefs. I have prayed diligently about these things and these are the answers I have been given. Again, I just wanted to say this briefly so that it may help explain why I am feeling the way I do.

Goodkat - I have always been one to dress well and am keeping myself up. I would like to start working out, but finding the time to do so would be difficult. This is complicated by the fact that all these years I put other things before my wife's needs. I think going to the gym would be seen by her to be yet another thing that comes before her. I am not overweight. I could probably use adding a few pounds of muscle. But I just think working out is a good way to help handle stress. I like Cool Water too and have used it in the past. I keep my wardrobe updated.

I would like to take my wife on some dates. I'll have to approach that gingerly. She knows how attracted I am to her, but I don't know if she wants to be around me in a situation that is romantic right now. I am feeling more comfortable talking to her and I feel like this is something I could bring up soon. We'll just have to see how it goes.

Happy is something that is hard to comprehend right now. I know and understand this is a must. My wife must feel like I can be happy around her and the kids. I am working diligently on this right now. Coming to terms with our situation is helping. At first this all came as such a surprise to me. Now that I am adjusting a little maybe being able to be happy will come a little easier too.

Thanks again for all the support and advice. Other than with regard to religion, I am open to suggestions, comments, and thoughts.

Blind
 

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Hi Blind,

I'm sorry to hear of your situation and although I'm fairly certain you wish you knew how your wife was feeling long before now, your focus is now in the right place to do something about it. I am curious if your wife shares your religious beliefs as far as being with another man should you divorce? If her beliefs are as yours, I would think there is more to lose with divorce and not seeing the benefit for her. It seems as though you both still respect one another so it doesn't seem to be an issue of needing to get out of a chaotic situation and the complications of two homes, impact on the children, financial implications would not outweigh living together as you are with the hope that seeing the change in you reignites a spark for her. My marriage was in a similar place last summer and felt my husband was able to continue bachelor life, fishing, wood-working, etc. (he is also extremely focused once he gets excited about something) and for me to run to the grocery store I felt I was imposing to ask him to stop what he was doing and watch the kids. I started to resent him and he started to feel that I didn't love or care about him. We were in serious dire straights at that point (our communication was horrible as we are both quite shy and private people) but decided to talk about how we made each other feel. I think the key for us was that we didn't point fingers and were both able to see fault in how we got to where we were and both wanted our marriage to work. I saw a counselor on my own for a while, which helped me to sort out how I was feeling & one thing she said that stuck with me...I was saying I'm not comfortable sharing my feelings and telling him what I'm thinking for fear of him saying 'too little too late' and then after being vulnerable, being shot down to nothing. Her response was 'Would you have regrets?' And I thought about it and said 'No, because I did everything in my power to make things work (although I'd feel awful)' She said, 'Would you have regrets if you kept it to yourself and he decided it was over?' My response, 'Yes, because I would always regret that I didn't speak up, that things might have been different if I did.' It sounds like in one of your posts where you felt good, even if it meant it didn't all work out in the end, that you were at peace because you were doing all you could to make things right. You still are. I agree with you that pushing any romance will not help your situation right now. I would respond more to your actions that show your love and support, especially if they didn't seem like a favor. Offering to watch the kids on Sat. so she can go work out is great, but it would have a greater impact for me if you said 'I'm going to take the kids to the zoo today...I'd love for you to come along but if you want to use the time for yourself, that's fine too because you deserve it more than anyone.' I guess in general letting her see how much you love your kids and her by giving them time and wanting to be around them as much as possible to the point where if she were to go work out, she wouldn't need to ask, she would just say 'going to the gym' and know you are there. If she typically arranges babysitters when you go out, etc. try taking that on...get a sitter and ask her if she'd like to go out to dinner. One book really helped me look at love in a different way (and gave the audio version to my husband for his long commute to work) The Five Love Languages. Hang in there...everything you are doing, no matter how things turn out, will give you the peace of mind that you did all you could.
 
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