Yes, you said it all. I do not blame myself but I have been in the same place as you...trying to fix it, doing what he asked me to, yet it always seems it's not good enough. I have come to realize it's him, and not me, to preserve my self esteem, yet I am sure it has worn on me, no question.
And yes, even though I do see him trying harder to please me after nearly divorcing 5 months ago because of continued deception in sending money to his EA in China, he still accuses me of being vindictive to hurt him and has never taken responsibility for this...I am wondering if we will survive the marriage. He promised to go to therapy but it's up to him now to make the appointment. (we need to find one)
I have learned to call him on everything now and tell him how it hurts me in a matter of fact way. I don't know if that's bad or good, but it makes me feel better to not absorb his mistreatment. What I would do in the past would be to get angry with him and react to his insult, or accusation and mistreatment. I learned that he would then turn it on me that I was the "bad one" violating him. He actually told his EA girl in China that I would yell at him after a few drinks. This was so far from the truth...I might have a few glasses of wine with him and I noticed he had withdrawn from me because of the EA, and so was trying to talk to him...ask him what was wrong...The thing I did wrong was to keep asking him. He perceived himself as the victim of some kind if abuse, when actually I was the one whom was deprived of affection and communication, accountability from him. I didn't find this out until much later that he had confided in her and told her this skewed story.
It goes on and since I cleaned out 1/2 of the bank account to leave him and make a place for myself and our 19 year old daughter in college, now the joint account has been closed down, and I think he will deprive me of funds when he is away traveling because "he can't trust me", when I took action because he had sent money to her in China, after promising me he would sever any relationship with her 4 years ago.
This will not work because I cannot afford all of the expenses, and we have a joint business in real estate renting apartments. There are expenses that come up like insurance, maintenance, etc that needs to be paid for and he makes big money but travels out of state or the country for extended periods..one to 4 months or more at a time. I used the rent checks this time to pay the expenses, but accounted for all of it to him as he left me no money or access to funds for his 3 week trip. We have tenants moving in and maintenance that needed to be done. And yet he says to me in an email today "Where are the rent checks ? I think you are just looking for an excuse to keep the rent checks to yourself. I thought we agreed that the rent checks were for the mortgages not to be used to hurt me ?"
WTF am I supposed to do? I wrote him back and held him accountable for not leaving me any funds, but I have to say I am nervous. I am unemployed and getting less $ that I have been. If he withholds funds from me now I think we will be done as I will not stand for that abuse.
I was going to file and didn't...one more try. 30 years is a long time after raising two great kids together and many good times. But the kicker is he never said he wouldn't contact her again. He said he couldn't give me anything. What am I stupid?
I am going to see a therapist Monday (new one) and also attend Co-Dependent meetings. I do need help to get stronger. Sometimes unfortunately love isn't enough.