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Discussion Starter #1
I've been reading this forum for a few weeks and am eager to learn how to cope with my dissolving marriage. I'm trying to hold on but my wife has been diagnosed with depression,anxiety and PTSD. she's also a breast cancer survivor. I've made so many efforts to repair it on my end and with her depression it's hard to know how she really feels.

I feel like I'm laying it all on the line and she isn't responding. She started therapy a month or so ago and admitted she sees me giving it 110% and knows I'm trying but she isn't responding. She hasn't gone to the doctor to see about. Antidepressants although I've suggested it and she said she wants to do therapy first. She hasn't said she wants a divorce but her actions and statements say otherwise. Looking for help.
 

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How long have you two been married?

How long have the problems been going on?
 

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Have you asked her if she wants a divorce? Depression is not an easy illness to overcome. I commend her for not wanting to solve the issue with pills right away. It sounds like she's been through a lot (cancer) and so it's very possible some therapy might help her quite a bit. I think there is a difference between depression that is appropriate to the situation and true depression. Feeling sad, mad, overwhelmed, etc in response to a bad event in your life is normal and therapy can help a lot. Feeling sad, mad, etc for no apparent reason is something else and very often medications are needed to help restore a chemical imbalance.

How long has she been feeling this way? What is she doing that makes you think she wants a divorce? Is the PTSD from the cancer? It's hard to give good advice without knowing a bit more about your situation.

I'm sorry you're going through this, but you've found a good place to get help.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
We've been together for just over 8 years. Married for almost 6. We've been having problems for about a year or so. We've been good off and on but I have generally felt she was being too distant, nagging and is harboring a ton of resentment towards me.

I met her at work back in January of 2011. Things started great, we were wed in 2013 and life was great. Shortly after marriage a truck came crashing into the side of our house which forced us to relocate to her parents house. In 2014 she switched a careers and became an aide for disabled patients and started school again to be an RN. In February 2015 she was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer. She finished two rounds of Chemo and then had a double mastectomy in August 2015. In April of 2017 we had a son together. She finished school in June of 2018 and is now an RN.

Ever since she was diagnosed with cancer things have been different. After her diagnosis was around the time I was doing some driving here and there at work. I was on the road from 10:00A.M. until 2:00A.M. the following day. I'd wake up late, hang around and then do it all over again. I never did get to make it to any of her appointments. I was the only one working and we were barely surviving. Power shut off, parents helping us out....We made a weekend out of a BC retreat in Vermont and it was amazing. I went to her major surgeries. Everytime I would come home she would be on the YSC forums talking to friends and people with experience. I thought I couldn't help. Because I didn't have experience myself with it so to say. I did however lose my dad to cancer in 2006.

Fast forward to March or so of last year and things took a turn. I noticed my sexual advances were not welcome, she didn't say no but I could see the look on her face. She would do it but didn't seem to enjoy it. She finally opened and said she felt sad and that I didn't love her. She couldn't devote any time to me at all. I knew her school work was important and we didn't have much of a relationship for the few years she was completing school because she is one of those people that gives it her all in her school work. We had a fight because she had a total lack of interest and when she said she didn't have time she would be on the couch watching TV or on social media. We kind of worked our way through it and I acknowledged my issues and gave her space.

This past September I joined a gym, started eating healthier and lost almost 35LBS. I honestly thought she didn't like me anymore

Throughout the summer off and on I would be more loving, kiss her and hug her, ask about her day and she would still act like it wasn't working. She was giving me a mixed bag of emotions and for a few weeks I would be short with her and just generally confused. This pretty much went on until this February. I finally realized I need to just stop worrying about sex and work on me and how I'm treating her.

I had suspected her of having depression back in the fall of last year and had asked her to get help with it and she said she would but never went through with it. Until this March she got a counselor and was diagnosed with PTSD, Depression and Anxiety. It all clicked. All the stress about life, us and her general unhappiness made sense and I felt I understood her. I gave it my all to show her I loved her. Constant messages, kisses and hugs and general interest. I no longer cared about her snappy attitude and her lack of connection. I wanted her to be better.

Then in March she made an interesting post on FB and I checked her messages. She was talking to some guy friend she knows. It was less sexual on her part but she still was making references such as "Well it would be weird with me because I have a kid and I'm fat". I called her out on it and she immediately told me that yes she had an inappropriate conversation and she was sad, lonely and depressed. I forgave her and we worked our way through it. Meanwhile I'm keeping as strong as I can because I know it is worth it to at least try for myself and our kids and her. I've not pushed the issue of sex or even tried for 6 months. I'll let her dictate that.

This past weekend though she was a little snappy and on Saturday I saw her texting that guy at my inlaws. I left to go home and told her to come how and talk. Her response was "Oh because I was texting my "friend" about local drama and wanted him to know about a mutal friend? It wasn't scandalous like "Gee lets go F$$#". She then continues to turn it around on me and how she knows I talk to other girls and says I have a girl on standby just waiting.

I slept upstairs the other night and she messaged me the next day saying "I know you're frustrated with me. You're trying 110% and I'm not responding." I told her to get over her insecurities about me" because I am the most loyal man ever. After not having sex for a year during cancer and 6 months now It doesn't interest me with anyone else. She said "I don't think I can "just get over" anything with you. I'm going to counseling and it isn't helping. I love you and care about your well being but don't know If I can get that intimate connection back with you.

So I told her I would stay the night at my aunts. I left my ring on the counter, feeling as though I don't know what to do and don't deserve her, and packed some clothes and went for the night. She opened up a little bit and said that maybe its her that is subconsciously sabotaging the married. Shes a B$%^& and just cruel. I'm back at the house and she said I'm more than welcome to be here but to give her space. I told her "I just hope you realize I want to help". She said "I don't want you to help".

She has given me so many mixed clues over the year I don't know what to do or say anymore. I feel lost within myself most of the time. When I open up to her it's like in one ear and out the other. Keeps saying she doesn't want to hurt me but gets mad if I say I want to leave.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
She doesn't know if she wants a divorce apparently. Everything she was doing was telling me that and when I mentioned it a few months back she said "Why is it so easy for you to just walk away?". I really never wanted a divorce but I'm in such a pickle I don't know what to do. I made myself an appointment with a therapist Monday and one for us in a few weeks. She said the night before mothers day she doesn't feel the drive anymore and nothing makes her happy.

I tend to over-react to some degree. I've read 3 marriage books already and she started to read one. She acts one way and talks another. Makes me feel like she wants out and then gets mad when I start to disconnect.

I wrote her another huge e-mail about my thoughts, feelings and love for her and how I want to make this work for as long as she wants it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Also for what it is worth : I work a full time job, come home and do the vacuuming, trash, sweeping, dishes, 98% of the cooking and some laundry. I started helping a ton more a few years ago when she was super stressed out. She always said it wasn't the chores that she needed but every time I tried to help she wouldn't let me. When she was doing school I tried to get involved and asked if I could help her study and she denied me. I went about my business. Doing woodworking, playing guitar and hanging out with my kids.

Here is an example of her attitude towards me and her resentment at play - My undershirts were in a hamper all messy and usually she folds them. She exclaims loudly "These are clean you know!! You can put them away anytime!". I said okay and 5 minutes later got up. I grabbed the basket and went to walk to the bedroom and she said "I'm not done putting clothes in there!!".

So I threw them down and told her to tell me when I could put them away. This is the second time she has done this. It's all too emotionally draining for me.
 

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Wow. You guys have been through a lot. I'm sorry. It's easy to see in your story that you love her and want the best for her and your marriage. It's also easy to see that your wife has some serious insecurities. She has lost both her breasts. I recently had breast surgery and have some scars and those alone are making me insecure. I can't imagine what your wife feels. Add in the fear of her cancer returning and it's perfectly understandable why she's insecure.

It seems like she gets insecure, pulls away, you try to be loving for a while, get frustrated and then pull way back. She then uses that as proof that you don't really want her. What a mess.

My advice is for her to continue her IC and both of you to start marriage counseling. She also needs to stop messaging her "friend" as he is fulfilling a need she has to be desired. It's not enough for her to hear it from you for some reason. Having a new guy desire her means a lot more. Wish I knew why that dynamic happens but I don't but I see it all the time. If I had to guess I'd say she thinks you "have" to want her because you are her husband so it doesn't count. I would lay it on the line with her. Tell her straight otu "If you want to save this marriage, you need to stop the messaging and you need to start marriage counseling with me." End.of.story. Be prepared to walk away if needed. You can only do so much and if she won't meet you halfway, there's your answer about what she wants.

You're a good guy, that's easy to see. It's not easy to be the husband of an ill woman nor of a nursing student. Both take SO much attention away from you. And I'm sure you worked your ass off to try and keep things afloat while she was ill but she may have seen all your time away as abandonment. Even though she knew you had to work. We often think with our hearts, not our minds. It's completely unfair to you but there it is.

I'm sure some of the guys on this forum will come along shortly with some advice as well.
 

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Wow. You guys have been through a lot. I'm sorry. It's easy to see in your story that you love her and want the best for her and your marriage. It's also easy to see that your wife has some serious insecurities. She has lost both her breasts. I recently had breast surgery and have some scars and those alone are making me insecure. I can't imagine what your wife feels. Add in the fear of her cancer returning and it's perfectly understandable why she's insecure.

It seems like she gets insecure, pulls away, you try to be loving for a while, get frustrated and then pull way back. She then uses that as proof that you don't really want her. What a mess.

My advice is for her to continue her IC and both of you to start marriage counseling. She also needs to stop messaging her "friend" as he is fulfilling a need she has to be desired. It's not enough for her to hear it from you for some reason. Having a new guy desire her means a lot more. Wish I knew why that dynamic happens but I don't but I see it all the time. If I had to guess I'd say she thinks you "have" to want her because you are her husband so it doesn't count. I would lay it on the line with her. Tell her straight otu "If you want to save this marriage, you need to stop the messaging and you need to start marriage counseling with me." End.of.story. Be prepared to walk away if needed. You can only do so much and if she won't meet you halfway, there's your answer about what she wants.

You're a good guy, that's easy to see. It's not easy to be the husband of an ill woman nor of a nursing student. Both take SO much attention away from you. And I'm sure you worked your ass off to try and keep things afloat while she was ill but she may have seen all your time away as abandonment. Even though she knew you had to work. We often think with our hearts, not our minds. It's completely unfair to you but there it is.

I'm sure some of the guys on this forum will come along shortly with some advice as well.
Thank you so much. I was so dilligent waiting for her to finish school. Put her through, she was making $500 a month, I paid all the bills, daycare etc. Got her numerous computers, tablets, agreed to get her a beautiful (and overly expensive) SUV because she wanted it and honestly I thought she deserved it! I feel I've more than put in the effort with the affection, books and putting MC on the table.

She'll get 2 days to stew and think about us and then we'll see how she feels. She wants me but resents me. I know that much. She fears I want someone else other than her and someone else will probably make me more happy in the end. I built a table for a woman at work who was just generally a nice girl. She applauds my efforts to my wife and says how sweet I am, how caring I am. My wife takes this as "You should just go be with her! I can't make you happy!!"
 

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No one in a marriage should be treated like an option, but from what you have shared here it sounds like you keep allowing yourself to be placed in that role... what would you do to show her you are not an option?

Her social habits and reactions shows she is emotionally investing, if not invested in this guy she is messaging with... it is not ok she is checking out.

What are your boundaries in your relationship when she pushes you away like that?

It sounds like she is ok with it if she weren't called on it... don't forget we teach people how to treat us.
 

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She wants me but resents me. I know that much. She fears I want someone else other than her and someone else will probably make me more happy in the end. I built a table for a woman at work who was just generally a nice girl. She applauds my efforts to my wife and says how sweet I am, how caring I am. My wife takes this as "You should just go be with her! I can't make you happy!!"
So, why do you think she resents you?

Perhaps she resents herself more and these feelings are spilling over to you...

If we do not love ourselves well it is easy to take our suffering out on others, how is she treating your children?
 

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Thank you so much. I was so dilligent waiting for her to finish school. Put her through, she was making $500 a month, I paid all the bills, daycare etc. Got her numerous computers, tablets, agreed to get her a beautiful (and overly expensive) SUV because she wanted it and honestly I thought she deserved it! I feel I've more than put in the effort with the affection, books and putting MC on the table.

She'll get 2 days to stew and think about us and then we'll see how she feels. She wants me but resents me. I know that much. She fears I want someone else other than her and someone else will probably make me more happy in the end. I built a table for a woman at work who was just generally a nice girl. She applauds my efforts to my wife and says how sweet I am, how caring I am. My wife takes this as "You should just go be with her! I can't make you happy!!"
She doesn't think she's worthy of you, that much is clear. And it's very sad to think she feels this low about herself. But in the meantime, she's ruining your life and your marriage. Maybe the very fact that you are such a generous caring guy makes it harder for her to think she's worthy of you. Hopefully this is something a marriage counselor can help her see. It's a self fulfilling prophecy...he's going to leave me so I'll treat him like crap, but he probably wouldn't have left if you had treated him well.

P.S. I wish my husband had bought me an SUV while I was in nursing school!!!
 

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No one in a marriage should be treated like an option, but from what you have shared here it sounds like you keep allowing yourself to be placed in that role... what would you do to show her you are not an option?

Her social habits and reactions shows she is emotionally investing, if not invested in this guy she is messaging with... it is not ok she is checking out.

What are your boundaries in your relationship when she pushes you away like that?

It sounds like she is ok with it if she weren't called on it... don't forget we teach people how to treat us.
What do you mean boundaries? Sorry. Lol.
 

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So, why do you think she resents you?

Perhaps she resents herself more and these feelings are spilling over to you...

If we do not love ourselves well it is easy to take our suffering out on others, how is she treating your children?
I'm not sure. It started before our big fights. Her attitude pushed me away. Maybe that's it. She thought I just didn't love her. Which wasn't the case at all. I just couldn't deal with her attitude.
 

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She doesn't think she's worthy of you, that much is clear. And it's very sad to think she feels this low about herself. But in the meantime, she's ruining your life and your marriage. Maybe the very fact that you are such a generous caring guy makes it harder for her to think she's worthy of you. Hopefully this is something a marriage counselor can help her see. It's a self fulfilling prophecy...he's going to leave me so I'll treat him like crap, but he probably wouldn't have left if you had treated him well.

P.S. I wish my husband had bought me an SUV while I was in nursing school!!!
I paid her last car off too. That was almost $1500. And paid off a $2000 Credit card.
 

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She told me a few months ago during a breakdown she knew who I was when we married and I'm doing nothing different. Huh.. How weird.

Sure I wasn't always the most affectionate. But looking back on social media posts she praised me. How awesome I am. How great of a dad I am.

We fell madly in love. Fast. Used to be soo attracted to me. Sex was great for a long time. We'd go for hours. She adored how good of a dad I am. One of the reasons she wanted me.
 

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She told me a few months ago during a breakdown she knew who I was when we married and I'm doing nothing different. Huh.. How weird.

Sure I wasn't always the most affectionate. But looking back on social media posts she praised me. How awesome I am. How great of a dad I am.

We fell madly in love. Fast. Used to be soo attracted to me. Sex was great for a long time. We'd go for hours. She adored how good of a dad I am. One of the reasons she wanted me.
Has she told you what she wants you to change?
 

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Has she told you what she wants you to change?
Pretty much that she doesn't feel loved or wanted. I started initiating conversation during the day more, holding hands, hugging, watching more TV. Just being with her.

She hasn't said exactly what I need to do. I try and get her to talk but her anxiety gets the best of her. She really feels like I'll leave at any moment. Like I'll pull the rug out from under her.

Odd thing is I initiated going to the bank about getting a home. We went a week ago to see what we needed to do.
 

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If she is not well, you really should carry on. I think humans are meant to support one another when illness is in the family or in a friendship group. If she decides to ask for a divorce, then that will be a different matter. Depression is not an easy thing to deal with and those who suffer it are in a prison of their own.
 

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Pretty much that she doesn't feel loved or wanted. I started initiating conversation during the day more, holding hands, hugging, watching more TV. Just being with her.

She hasn't said exactly what I need to do. I try and get her to talk but her anxiety gets the best of her. She really feels like I'll leave at any moment. Like I'll pull the rug out from under her.

Odd thing is I initiated going to the bank about getting a home. We went a week ago to see what we needed to do.
If she can't speak to you about what she needs ask her to write it in a letter. I get that her anxiety is too high to say it out loud. But she can write it not even by in the room when you read it.

We all have different things that make us feel loved. You do a lot for her but maybe none of that speaks to her in her language.
 

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If she can't speak to you about what she needs ask her to write it in a letter. I get that her anxiety is too high to say it out loud. But she can write it not even by in the room when you read it.

We all have different things that make us feel loved. You do a lot for her but maybe none of that speaks to her in her language.
I'll do that. Thank you, I'll. Start will having her give me a couple things to do.
 
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