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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This is going to be a long story, so please just bare with me. I've gone back to edit it to trim it down a bit :)

* been together for 2 years, married 8 months
* had been under contract for buying a house when this started
* I just got accepted into nursing school 5 days before he dropped the bombshell
* I have given him full permission to file for divorce if he wanted to, I just wasn't going to do it. He STILL hasn't done it.
* Been separated a little over a month
* He is a Marine vet - two tours to Afghanistan. Is now a Corrections Officer
* I was a CNA, but took a leave from my job because I had to move away due to the separation
* We had very awkward hours. I worked 2nd shift, he worked 3rd. We didn't get much time together
* We don't have children together, I have a son from a previous marriage
* Both have family history of depression/mental illness in the family. My mom had been diagnosed with clinical depression. His mom had been diagnosed with bi-polar
* My husband was a very kind man who took it upon himself to get things done. He has flipped a 180. He used to be very logical in his thinking, now relies purely on emotions
* I knew something was wrong when he stopped caring about the finances. He was always extremely careful about that before
* He is incredibly inconsistent with his emotions. From happy to sad to blank to angry
* I have thought perhaps bi-polar, but he hasn't shown any manic side
* He hasn't changed any of his passwords. Not to Facebook, not to his e-mail...he even still has the combined checking account with me. He knows I have access to all of this. Hasn't bothered to do a thing about it. So much for wanting me out of his life.
* Only went to one counseling session with me, refused to go back. Said we 'ganged up on him'
* He IS talking to another woman. He says it has the potential to be romantic, but at this point it isn't. I don't really care if he's telling the truth or not
* He constantly flip flops on his decision as to what he wants to do

One morning, he came to me and said we needed to walk away from buying our house because we needed to figure out us. I was of course devastated. He sobbed and held me, continuously saying how much he loved me and how he never meant to hurt me. He cried about how he didn't want to be alone and how no one liked him. That crying over the next couple of days turned into absolute coldness. We would still have intimacy once in awhile. I had talked to him about it and expressed that right now it was more of a physical release than a deep emotional bonding (thinking he felt the same way). After all, how could it be deep and emotional? He just said he wanted out of the marriage. He got incredibly angry, and said, "You know exactly where to shoot me, don't you?" That utterly confused me.

Finally, one morning I tried to be gentle to him and asked him to please try to work on this. He said he couldn't, because he had absolutely no more love for me. Either I needed to get out, or he would. I couldn't afford the place by myself, so I had no choice but to leave. I went to Vegas to stay with my mom for a couple of weeks. At first he wouldn't talk to me, but eventually agreed to talk and see how things went. He had backed off the subject of divorce. I had stopped talking to him for 3 days (I told him before hand I was going to take a break), and he was angrier than before when I came back.

So, I finally returned back home. He was surprisingly warm when I got back. We were intimate that night, but around 4 in the morning he refused to sleep in the bed with me. I sat with him and tried to tell him that I understood right now he didn't feel like he could really express love towards me. That's when he said, "when I walked in and saw you, I felt nothing. I slept with you to try to feel something, but it didn't do anything for me."

He suddenly brought up divorce again. When I asked why, he said because he was having an emotional affair with one of his coworkers. I told him that I was deeply wounded, but that I still wanted to try to fix our marriage. He started screaming at me that if I didn't file, that he would. I still said I wouldn't do it. He got up and said how I would regret my decision. How all he was going to do was bring me down. How I had lost all my morals by staying with a man like him. He said, "I don't love you! I don't want this marriage! There is nothing to work on! I feel nothing for you! Maybe in 6 months I will change my mind!" I had said, "If you want a divorce without a shred of doubt in your heart, then tell me so. You are letting me go as your wife and I am free to do whatever I want and see whomever I want just like you can. That this is the end and you won't change your mind later on." That made him stop and hesitate. He then said, "...I don't know. I can't make a decision right now."

The next couple days after that, he seemed much more gentle. More affectionate too. He would actually reach out and stroke my hair once in awhile, let me lay beside him, etc. He still wouldn't say "I love you" and I didn't say it to him. He had admitted he was talking to three girls. He had told two of them that he was not talking to them anymore. The third one he wanted to wait in person to tell. However, when he talked about doing so, he seemed hesitant.

So, in the morning, I drove over to his work to see him. That was when I saw the girl get into the car with him. That hurt more than anything. I was furious, I was devastated. I called him and demanded he come home. It was the girl he was hesitant on telling they needed to cut ties. He had told me that he was trying to tell her that it needed to end. Then why lie to me about it?

A few days later, I caught her in my house. They were dressed, but the fact that she was in my house was enough for me. He was deeply ashamed. He said he didn't realize the repercussions of his actions until it happened. He cried (not bawled, just some tears). He said I was an amazing wife, and he truly had everything in life. He said he should have accepted my forgiveness when he had the chance. His actions wasn't worth the price he paid. He couldn't even explain to me why she was so special. He said she wasn't worth losing me. He also admitted that the reason he had lashed out the night we were last intimate was because he actually did feel something, and that scared him. He had to push me away again.

He finally said how he had lost all his morals. He was once a good guy - THE good guy. Now he is a bad man. A very bad man. He is sick, and he needs help. He says he has to hit rock bottom before he can begin to rebuild himself. He wanted to protect me from the bad man he had become. He said he can still see the images of his friends being shot or blown up in Afghanistan and not recoil at the memory, but he can't look into my eyes. He can't. He can't stand the incredible shame and guilt.

That was when I hit the ground running when it came to my spiritual growth. I focused on meditation, to clear my mind of anxieties. To relax myself whenever I could. I began to bible study with the couple over Skype twice a week. Everyone could start to see a real change in me, including my husband. I was much calmer when approached by his anger. Finally, he said that he wanted to rebuild our foundation. To start rebuilding the friendship in order to get to the point of a relationship. And, that we should refrain from being intimate with each other during this time. I agreed, although things changed just a couple of days later. He had admitted that he was still going to pursue the other woman romantically.

Why would he pursue her while trying to repair things with me? It made no sense. He couldn't explain. Finally, for the first time since this all began, he admitted he missed me. That was a huge step. He also admitted that the reason he didn't want to be intimate with me was because it made him emotional. He didn't want to feel emotional. He wanted to be numb like he did before. I told him that if he continued to pursue her, that I was going to refrain from speaking to him. Not file for divorce, nothing like that. I just wasn't going to allow him to say he was going to work things with me and still keep her in his life.

I gave him some time while I put all my energy into God and my son. I had to go up there to sign the cancellation papers for the house we were going to buy. When we met up, he then said he was going on a 'hiatus' just like I did in Vegas. When I asked him why, he said, "You said you were going to! I don't want to talk to anyone right now! Everyone manipulates me! And you are the worst manipulator of all! I just want complete and total silence so I can think!" I did agree to allow him 4 days of no contact. He said, "And on Monday, I will text you. If you don't respond, then I'll know where you are in this marriage."

Basically, he is a stranger wearing my husband's face. I'm not really sure what to do with him.
 

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He's not stable. He sounds like he has major mental illness, possibly PTSD, possibly mood disorders, and has some borderline personality symptoms. Who knows without a proper diagnosis.
This is so much bigger than you. If he saw his friends did then he most likely has PTSD,
and who know what else.
The bottom line for you is that he is incapable of managing his thoughts and emotions, he doesn't know who he is from one minute to the next.
It isn't your job to fix him or to save him. So please don't fall into that trap. If you can get him help that's nice but unfortunately it sounds like it's going to be a very very long haul to get him stable if he ever will be again.
You can't argue with a mental illness. Just stop trying to engage with him, take care of yourself and if he will get help that's great, but you need to take care of you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
He's not stable. He sounds like he has major mental illness, possibly PTSD, possibly mood disorders, and has some borderline personality symptoms. Who knows without a proper diagnosis.
This is so much bigger than you. If he saw his friends did then he most likely has PTSD,
and who know what else.
The bottom line for you is that he is incapable of managing his thoughts and emotions, he doesn't know who he is from one minute to the next.
It isn't your job to fix him or to save him. So please don't fall into that trap. If you can get him help that's nice but unfortunately it sounds like it's going to be a very very long haul to get him stable if he ever will be again.
You can't argue with a mental illness. Just stop trying to engage with him, take care of yourself and if he will get help that's great, but you need to take care of you.
I have definitely suspected mental illness. He did witness very horrific things during his tour, so I know PTSD was definitely a risk factor. I noticed he has shown symptoms of BPD as well. Not all of them, but definitely a few. That, and with his mother's genetics he can be prone to mental illness. At first I suspected only major depression, but it's more than that. The only thing I can think of that set it off was stress and lack of proper sleep.

I have to move back to the town he's in when my nursing school starts. However, I am not moving back in with him. I know he is incredibly unstable. At this point, I don't feel like my life is at risk, but it could get to that point if he were pushed in the wrong direction. Right now, my focus is on me and my son. I am terribly sad of what is going on with my husband. I want to help and be supportive, but so long as he refuses treatment, I can't offer him anything.
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I have definitely suspected mental illness. ...I know he is incredibly unstable.
B2B, if you can rule out a hormone change and drug abuse, the two most common causes of emotional instability are bipolar and BPD. The lack of obvious mania does not rule out bipolar because, with bipolar-2, the mania phase can be subtle and not pronounced. If you're interested, I describe the differences I've seen between the typical behaviors of bipolar sufferers (e.g., my foster son) and BPDers (e.g., my exW) in my post at 12 Bipolar/BPD Differences. If that description rings some bells, I would be glad to discuss them with you. Take care, B2B.
 

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is he willing to see someone at the VA?
 

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Your entire post is about him. You are watching his every move and making your life about him.

There is something called a 180 here. In your case, since your husband is having an affair (what he is doing is an emotional affair which is bad, but it has probably moved beyond that as well). You need, for your own sanity, and to get your own bearings to cut off all contact with him. If he texts, do not answer. If he emails, do not answer. If he calls, do not answer. That is not to punish him, but to give yourself space and distance so you can see yourself and your own life clearly without the shadow of his insanity blocking the sunlight you need to see things clearly.

Are you in IC yet? Would be a good idea for you to be able to process some things with somebody who can really help you deal with issues that you yourself have. Your husband is a sh!t, but you are married to him. You are the one hanging onto him. What does that say about you? What does it say that you are a doormat for this man? How can you build up some new self-esteem?

The 180 is about more than no contact. If you have been isolated and not had friends around, you need to make some and reconnect with old friends. Do that now. If you have been working a lot, get a hobby. If you have let your appearance slack, get to the gym, get yourself a makeover and such things as well. If you have been dependent upon him financially, start now to untie yourself and make a living on your own. If you have been caring for his every need, stop that right now. Stop worrying about him. Get to counseling and figure out how to be less care-taking. Etc.

You are in for a long and hard ride. You can come out of this a much better woman, a strong person who who knows who you are, your weaknesses and strengths. But you will likely need a lot of help from friends, family, and counseling. This board might help as a place to vent and such. In fact, if you think of contacting him, post here first. People here can talk you down. Anyway...180. That is the way for you. It is the way for you to make it through this as an opportunity despite all the pain now and what will come.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Your entire post is about him. You are watching his every move and making your life about him.

There is something called a 180 here. In your case, since your husband is having an affair (what he is doing is an emotional affair which is bad, but it has probably moved beyond that as well). You need, for your own sanity, and to get your own bearings to cut off all contact with him. If he texts, do not answer. If he emails, do not answer. If he calls, do not answer. That is not to punish him, but to give yourself space and distance so you can see yourself and your own life clearly without the shadow of his insanity blocking the sunlight you need to see things clearly.

Are you in IC yet? Would be a good idea for you to be able to process some things with somebody who can really help you deal with issues that you yourself have. Your husband is a sh!t, but you are married to him. You are the one hanging onto him. What does that say about you? What does it say that you are a doormat for this man? How can you build up some new self-esteem?

The 180 is about more than no contact. If you have been isolated and not had friends around, you need to make some and reconnect with old friends. Do that now. If you have been working a lot, get a hobby. If you have let your appearance slack, get to the gym, get yourself a makeover and such things as well. If you have been dependent upon him financially, start now to untie yourself and make a living on your own. If you have been caring for his every need, stop that right now. Stop worrying about him. Get to counseling and figure out how to be less care-taking. Etc.

You are in for a long and hard ride. You can come out of this a much better woman, a strong person who who knows who you are, your weaknesses and strengths. But you will likely need a lot of help from friends, family, and counseling. This board might help as a place to vent and such. In fact, if you think of contacting him, post here first. People here can talk you down. Anyway...180. That is the way for you. It is the way for you to make it through this as an opportunity despite all the pain now and what will come.
Yes, I see completely where you're coming from. Things have changed a bit since my original post. I had given him a couple of warnings leading up to it, but I finally took the step to lock him out. I have blocked him on Facebook and I blocked him from being able to contact him and he can't contact me. I moved 5 hours away with family, and I have already detangled my finances with his. There is still more to do, But it is all a step in the right direction. Whatever is going on with him, and there are many theories on it, he is still choosing to behave badly. Now there is a consequence for his actions. I have told him multiple times that he will have to be the one to file. For some reason, he can't seem to do it. He has expressed not being happy with a divorce.I won't file now because I have enough on my plate. I am about to go to court to fight my ex to be able to move out of the state with our son, and my nursing school is about to begin. Huge stresses that really doesn't need a divorce on top of it.

If he hasn't filed by the time I graduate next May, then I will file. But for now, all I can do is cut loose from him.
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