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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,
I found this website while searching on the internet for advise on my situation. I think I know what I need to do/should do but I am finding it hard to get up the courage.

I have been with my husband since I was 17. I moved away with him when I was 19 and had nobody but him for quite a while. He was in architecture school and stayed in studio almost continuously even though he knew I was home by myself. When he did take breaks he used them to go out to the bars with his friends and used the excuse that he couldn't do anything about it because I wasn't 21 so I couldn't go. I ended up having a medical emergency and called him hysterically asking him to come home for me. He stayed in studio. A stranger from the downtown clinic had to come to my apartment to get me. So, needless to say, I have deep resentment issues toward him regarding neglect.

Fast forward 15 years and now we have two children who are 14 and 9. The constant hours in studio were replaced by constant hours at work. I am positive that he is not having an affair with a woman but I definitely feel like he is having one with his job. I am home alone most of the time and have very few friends since I have a hard time finding someone to watch the kids for me to go out and we have virtually no friends as a couple since he is never home. I feel like I'm a pseudo single parent but trapped in between roles without the benefits of either classification.

Last year I became attracted to someone at work. I think it was just so nice to feel like I was still attractive to someone and I liked the attention. It was starting to get into dangerous territory and we both put the brakes on. Nothing ever happened but it was enough to make me realize that I needed to do something about my marriage. I really could have had an affair and I don't want to be that kind of person. I went home and I told him I wanted a divorce. I even filled out paperwork. He immediately started getting angry at me telling me that I was giving up on him and our kids, that I was going to damage them for life. He then had an "epiphany" that he really did have a problem with being a workaholic and that he needed to get help. He asked me to give him time to change. Well, it's been about 6 months and nothing has changed (surprise surprise). When I remind him of it he tells me he would quit his job but I think it's his way of telling me nothing's going to change because he knows that's not realistic.

He's made it clear that he's not going to cooperate so I feel like I would have to be the one to move out. I don't really want to do this to my kids since they should be able to stay in their home. I feel very trapped and I feel myself slipping more and more into a depression. I've gained weight, I haven't been sleeping well, and I don't want to make any family trip plans because I don't feel like we are a family.

I don't want to put my kids through a divorce but I just don't see this as a healthy situation at all. I also don't want to just stay in this marriage because of the kids and have an unfulfilling, depressing existence. I don't know if anybody would have any advise for me but it has been good to write this and summarize my feelings and thoughts.
 

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It's never a good idea to stay "just" for the kids. They're wise to how unhappy your marriage is. You don't want them to 'settle' for an unhappy marriage like this one, do you? They will if they believe this is all a spouse can expect from marriage.

Doesn't sound like your husband has EVER been someone you could rely on; he's always been self-absorbed. If YOU want a divorce, then YOU SHOULD GET ONE. You are NEVER going to get another chance to live this life of yours on Earth.

Your children will not be RUINED by your divorce; they have plenty of friends at school who have survived divorce. It's no longer socially ostracizing. Friends and professionals can help them navigate the waters. Who knows, your 14yo may actually be RELIEVED at a change for the better in the household.

1.) Go see a divorce lawyer and KNOW YOUR RIGHTS. (who has to move, how will assets be split, how will debt be split, how will time with the children be allocated including with extended family, etc.)

2.) Get yourself to your doctor and see about your depression. You may need some medication temporarily or perhaps just counseling and making positive strides forward in YOUR OWN LIFE will help you curb the depression.

3.) Ask your doctor/counselor for referrals for your kids. They may need to talk to someone short- or long-term about the family.

4.) Do NOT allow your H to manipulate you or guilt you into staying. He has NEVER been there for you (or the kids). He doesn't REALLY want to change or he would have done so by now (not just given it lip-service.) He just doesn't want to discomfit himself...he has SELFISHLY set his life up JUST THE WAY HE WANTS IT; the fact that it doesn't work for the rest of you is just too damned bad! He doesn't want you to leave and make him READJUST his life and start over from ground zero. Now it's just TOO BAD for him.
 

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You gave him the chance, which is more than I got in a similar situation. I think you've been more than fair and its time to move on. It may be sad overall but its harder to find people who haven't gone through at least one divorce, so I really don't think there's a stigma associated with it anymore, and there's support networks for it and kids understand that just because mommy and daddy don't love each other doesn't mean they don't love them.

Though I know its easy for random people on the internet to tell you to dump that zero and get a hero and then to actually do it :) That said, I hope you will consider our advice and maybe the advice of close friends and family and if appropriate a therapist/counselor. Good luck.
 

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Hi - married to an Architect here.

Some of what you wrote hit home hard for me. Especially the part about the long hours in studio translating into endless hours at work. My husbands ability to maintain hyper focus for extended periods of time (he can sit on one place, working on one project, for literally 12 hours straight without eating or sleeping) amazes and concerns me. I have spent a lot of time around the profession - I once was a budding architect myself, but did not fit in to the studio atmosphere, didn't have that kind of hyper vigilance I guess, and moved onto engineering instead.

Anyway - some of what you are experiencing is probably part of the culture of his trade. I suffer from that too. My husband has great difficulty with balance, and understanding the need for it. He is easily consumed completely into one thing or the other. And, in my case, that pendulum can swing wildly between family (a full week of his undivided attention while neglecting other needs ), his work, studying for his exams, etc.

I have friended many other architects and all seem to share this trait in one form or another.

This doesn't make marriage easy, and certainly not an excuse for him to ignore you entirely. He needs counseling to learn how to balance his life properly. Are you soft spoken? I am loud and brash and have let H know exactly what I want - which is not necessarily a good way to handle this problem - because all I did was serve to freak him out and stress him.

Would you be willing to try MC?
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Discussion Starter #5
I logged in for the first time since I posted this message and saw all of your replies. Thanks for all the thoughful, great advise. I am loud and outspoken and the longer I am with him and deaing with this situation, the *****ier I get. I completely admit I am not a pleasant person to come home to now and for the reasons I listed above and this reason, I know there is no mending the situation. I actually went today and filed the papers. He knows he is going to be served soon. It's very easy for me to serve him since he lives at work. I am no longer willing to sacrifice my happiness for his issues of imbalance and continual promises of change. I actually feel really free and at peace since I made this decision. I know this is going to be a long road for me, the kids, and him but I know this is the right thing to do.
 

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I am GLAD you are at peace, PRD2B#5. (Why are you proud to be #5?)

The fact that you feel better already is indicative that this is a move that really NEEDED to be made.
 

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I've now officially filed. I didn't get an attorney before I filed but now I'm thinking I should. I am with the kids 90% of the time and his family is all assuming that I will be moving out.

Last night he picked up my oldest and started asking her about the reasons I've given for doing this. I didn't think he would be stupid enough to drag our kids through crap that he has caused but I guess I'm wrong. I also thought he would be mature enough to be able to divide up our property but now I'm having doubts about that as well. I'm thinking that he is assuming since I initiated the divorce that I should surrender all of my rights. I'm thinking he surrendered his rights all the times he didn't come home from work.
 

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I'd like to think I'm going to be rational when (and she told me its imminent) the filing comes from my wife, but even I'm not sure how I'll react. I know at this point there's a hair trigger and I have to be sure to focus and not make a bad situation worse. Simple, but silly example, we are still living in the same house and stuck with the separation that she puts the stuff in the dishwasher and starts it, and I put the dishes away. Well, today, I went down there and saw the note to put away the dishes, which I started doing, thinking, hey these are kinda dirty, putting half of them back in the sink. Then even farther true I realized that she put the sign to put the dishes away before she even started the dishwasher -- it was on a timer.

I asked her about it and she started rolling her eyes and I started to say something but I just backed out of the room saying 'Mark to unload the dishes when they are ready to unload'. Then I went downstairs and unleashed a torrent of curses into a wall. :)
 

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PRD2B#5:

GET AN ATTORNEY! The money you spend will be WELL WORTH it to know that YOU are protected FINANCIALLY. It is also another layer of insulation if your STBXH starts getting idiotic...you can tell him to TALK TO YOUR LAWYER.

HE should GET OUT. The kids should NOT have to leave their home. He CERTAINLY should not get the kids since he's never been there to parent them in the past.
 
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