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Discussion Starter #1
On the advice of my BTAMFF, I'm observing my husband's behavior in the next few weeks as I contemplate whether I'm going to move out and leave him for the third and last time, or not.

Thought I'd journal my observations here. Feel free to comment or relate.

Things are good when...

He is happy when it seems like he's "off the hook":
I have a lot to say--good or bad--about things he can discuss safely, agrees with me on, and/or that he doesn't feel responsible for. Things like my teaching job, which is at the school wehre he does IT work so he feels confident and knowledgeable about it. I can prattle on, vent or complain; since he doesn't think it reflects on him, and HE doesn't have to DO anything about it, he is Mr. All-Ears.
He's happy when I'm confident and even demanding or b***y about things he feels he can successfully provide for me. When I sit like a queen on the couch and demand cookies and tea or a foot-rub, he is HAPPY TO OBLIGE.

Things are bad when...
I want to connect with him on a deeper level about more serious, abstract, spiritual things. He reacts, jokes, gets irreverent, becomes a know-it-all, shuts it down.
I request a wide berth and explain that's why I'm a little whiney, needy or flakey if I'm tired, stressed, sick, hormonal or have had a long day. On more than one occasion, he hasn't supported me at important moments.
The SECOND he senses any emotional need or weakness in me, he goes on the offense.

Another key observation:
MY emotional tone sets his emotional tone--always when it's negative or neutral.
And sometimes, when it's good.

Bottom line: if the tape rolling in his head hears something I say and tells him it's HIS fault and HIS responsibility, things go south.

As for me, i'm working through the codependency issues that have kept me enmeshed and obsessed.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
An observation about myself: I have backslid, in terms of strength and engaging him.
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What are the advantages to leaving him, i.e., what will you gain in time, freedom, etc., by having him out of your life? On the flip side, what are the disadvantages of keeping him around?

Make a list of 100 things you like about him, or your relationship with him, and another list of 100 things you hate.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I've extensively outlined answers to both those questions many times. Not that I don't welcome your replies.

More observations:
I'm under the weather. AGAIN. Most stubborn virus I've ever had.
He is in full doting mode: bought me meds, flowers, movie, soup. Taking care of me.
THIS kind of care taking, he feels safe doing. In fact in some ways I think he might prefer it: I'm too busy being sick on the couch to demand anything more from him than what comes easy to him: taking care of my physical needs.

If you think that sounds unappreciative and cynical, read some of my other threads.

Here's a common thread: things are fine if I'm busy or occupied with something other than him; whether I'm busy and important, or sick and pitiful.
As long as I don't ask for anything emotional from him or try to connect emotionally with him, we're good.
(Unless something else has put him in a bad mood and he's short on patience, which he takes out on me)
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Discussion Starter #6
Asking something emotional of him or trying to connect emotionally with him, he takes as a criticism.
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He's being nice and attentive and positive--all the things I'd been longing to see for months when I was wholeheartedly in and trying to work it out on my end, do my best, do anything, pray my heart out, try so hard. He's reading the book I nagged him to read.
But at this point, he's taken such hard blows to our connection so recently../
I need to give myself some space to protect myself from what I might do: warm up completely to him, shower him with affection and appreciation. As if all the other stuff--which happened as recently as this week--didn't happen.
So many times I've chosen to forgive instead of resent and rehash; so many times I've looked at the small good things instead of the huge bad things.
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It's sounding like you'll feel bad about yourself if you forgive him and "it" happens again.
Yes. I kick myself.
Also: each time I forgive, it's harder to feel as close to him again.
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