What did you do for all those years that was so awful?
Were you chronically cheating on her?
What is this controlling behavior stuff - what does that mean?
Did she tell you along the way that she was unhappy? Why is she so negative about her family as well? Because I will tell you, if you are such a bad guy, why did she have kids with you 6 and 10 years into the marriage? And if you are so bad, why didn't she divorce you and THEN look for another man? Actively starting an EA while still actively married is totally wrong. I believe that while you sit in the hotel, she is busy trying to find her next man. I do not think that is fair to you. I believe the only 2 fair choices are
1 - she tries to make it work with you and stops all this texting with another guy
2 - you start a divorce
Give her the security of marriage with the fun of chasing other men is insane. As for her being upset by the deaths - I get that - I really do. My father died less then a month ago. It is not the basis for refusing marriage counseling - she sounds like she wants to put ALL the blame on you - I will tell you now no counselor in the world is ever going to agree that she is 100 percent blameless.
Originally Posted by confused555
I have been reading the theory and principles behind “Love Must Be Tough” by James Dobson. The principles seem appropriate for our situation. She feels hurt by me for the years of control, lack of appreciation, and lack of support. I am taking the steps to change. She has acknowledged that she sees the changes yet says she does not feel them. She has mentioned moving out several times and I have said I am not going to stop you, but have also begged her to give it time before she goes. She says she wants to move into an apartment, but the ones she found all had year leases, and she wanted something shorter. I have begged her not to on two occasions.
We tried marriage counseling. We had two meetings with our pastor, and after the second one she felt like her feelings were not being taken into an account and that the years of hurt and pain can’t just go away. We meet with a different marriage / grief counselor last Monday and when she asked the counselor what do with all the feelings she was having towards me the counselor asked her to write them down. My wife did not see the benefit in that and right after we left the counseling session she exploded on me. She has since said she is not ready for marriage counseling, and she needs to focus on herself, and she just wants to be happy. She does have an appointment next Monday for an individual grief counselor. She says she loves me, but is not in love with me. However, her actions are not all negative. Sometimes she says she wants to work on the relationship. Her feelings can change 3 times in one hour. She started texting this guy a lot and I confronted her and she admitted to it being inappropriate, but only the start of an emotional affair. She said it was wrong and she would stop. According the “Love Must Be Tough” principals (very simplified) I should tell her she is free to go and open the cage for her.
However I don’t think it applies to our relationship. Her dad died in July after a year long battle with lung cancer. The year long ordeal took its toll on my wife. She was an emotional wreck for a year. When he died her grief went through the roof. I know everyone grieves differently, but for her this was a major loss. Also on her plate 2 weeks after her dad died she found out her mother has terminal cancer and has 2 years to live. The breakdown in our relationship occurred 1 month ago shortly after her mom ended up in the hospital from side effects of chemo, and seeing her mom for the first time without any hair. She has not had any grief counseling. This next Monday will be her first appointment. I have not been a good husband for the last 14 years all and my recent attempts to change and help out more have been meet with resentment and anger. I know this is normal, and there is no timeline to be followed.
She asked for space the other day, and rather than her move out and really disrupt the children’s (ages 4 and 8) lives I suggested I move out for a while. I am staying in a hotel for now. I have been there for 3 nights. I am honoring her request for space, and on the first night she called and we talked for about 1 hour. Since then she has not contacted me in any way. I want to text her and tell her I love her, but I don’t think she wants that right now. I think she is suffering a lot of guilt for the way she is treating me. She wrote me a not and put it in my suitcase I packed for the hotel. It said “I truly do love you with all my heart! I’m sorry for the pain I’ve caused you. I hope you can forgive me. Know that wherever you are I’m thinking about you Love you, “
Her family has called me and asked about her because she has ignored their calls and has not confided our relationship problems or how sad she is about her dad and mom to them. She used to confide every detail of her life with her sister and mother. Now they are asking me what is going on. Early in this her sister told her she could not believe she was going to give up on our marriage. Her sister encouraged her to work on our marriage. After that conversation my wife said she was tired of her family controlling her also. She has abandoned all her old friends she says that her friends are trying are trying to control her and only want from her. She is tired of giving to all of them. She has not confided her feelings about our relationship to her family or old friends. She has started a new friendship with a lady 30 years older than her. They have only been friends for about 3 months (right after her dad died and her mom was diagnosed) my wife says this lady is like a mother to her, and the lady says she is like the daughter she never had. This lady has given her a job at a business she owns. My wife was a stay at home mom until 1 month ago. This lady has taken my wife out and bought her clothes. They are planning a trip to Jamaica together. She spends 4 to 5 nights a week with her. She also works with her so they are together all the time.
So with all that should I follow the tough love guidelines and set her free, or is this not the time for tough love? Any advice will be greatly appreciated.