So I got into a game of 20 questions with my wife the other day. Which was good, it's far easier for me to answer questions then just start talking about emotional stuff.
Anyway, my answers kept pointing a certain way, until it dawned on her. She asked me, "you want a divorce, don't you?". I said yes, and apologized that it wasn't an easy thing to admit.
So now she's decided that what we really need is more date nights and a romantic vacation together, in addition to marriage counseling, and everything will be fine. Meanwhile, she's stepping up her "good wife" behavior, cooking more elaborate meals, looking at me with puppy eyes, toning down her usual argumentativeness etc.
What's she thinking? Help me figure out her behavior and what to do about it. I can't say I mind the "good wife" behavior but I know it's only temporary and she'll be back to sassing and annoying me again in no time.
Boundaries means that you both sit down and work out what you EACH need in a happy marriage. What you will accept from your spouse. What that looks like. And what will happen - exactly what will happen - when the other person crosses each particular boundary.
As long as you both know what's expected, and what will happen if it doesn't turn out that way, you have a road map for getting back on track.
For example, if she yells at you, one of your boundaries would be "I won't participate in a discussion with you if you raise your voice; if you do, I will leave the room for 20 minutes. We can try again to resolve the issue, but if you raise your voice again, I will leave again."
Or, if you use belittling remarks to her, she may posit "If you use that sneer you use when you say you think I'm wrong, I will not discuss the issue again until you apologize."
You BOTH have to agree on these things. Are you willing to do the hard work to reach these agreements with her?
You come across as a totally selfish loser. I
Let me deconstruct that -
1) selfish: definitely. Not to mention arrogant and pigheaded. Accepting myself as I am has been a major theme of mine over the past year, I used to be embarrassed to know my personality had some rough edges, but I've given up on fighting it. I am who I am and I want what I want and everybody else can just deal with it.
2) loser: my life history is the opposite of a loser. I've got the right IQ, education, advanced degree, career, money, creativity, artistic talent, confidence, and many other attributes that are highly desired by potential mates.
A woman who is really compatible with me will be able to handle my arrogance with grace and dignity, give me space to be an ass, and still respect me for all my positive qualities and challenge me with her own intellect. That's not a description of most women, most women wouldn't be able to stand dating me for 5 minutes. I'm OK with that.
I take it back. Do something good and let her go, so she can find a guy who will respect HER more than himself.
That's actually my plan. I think we're both holding each other back from being happy.
The problem is she doesn't see it that way. She's being clingy and it makes it more difficult. My question is why does she act like this when it's so obviously not working out?
She also knows what I'm like, she knows I'm kind of selfish. She knows she can use that to manipulate me, hence the "king of the castle" treatment when she's afraid I'm leaving. She knows its hard for me to resist.
Why can't she just let go, it would make this much easier?
In spite of everything I've said above, I have a lot of affection and concern for my wife, although I don't love her.
I really hate feeling like I'm going to rip her heart out, even if it's for the best.
If you can't understand or empathize with how I feel, then whatever. This is hard for me too, I wish I could find some support.
I wish I could convince her that this is for the best, so she would make it easier rather than harder to leave.
Why won't anyone answer my question? How is she feeling and thinking, that's what I want to know.
She was my best friend before and during when we were dating, I want my friend back who I could talk to about stuff honestly without all this relationship drama.
She is desperate. She has lived with a man who cares more about himself, and the more she realized that, the more she grew to blame herself and hate herself, believing that the reason he wasn't 'into' her was something SHE was doing wrong, when in reality, she made the mistake of marrying an egotist, who will never care for anyone more than himself.
But SHE didn't know that, because her husband kept stringing her along, giving her just enough hope to believe that if she were just a LITTLE bit better, smarter, sexier, funnier, more beguiling...SOMETHING would turn things around and make him want to really give himself to her.
And the longer it lasted, the longer she tried and watched him get more and more cynical, watched him act more and more like she was 'sassing' him and 'annoying' him, the more desperate she became to figure out what was wrong with HER.
So now, after all this, she is at wit's end, bottom of the barrel, convinced she is worthless and will NEVER deserve to find a man to love her, because all her husband has done has let her think she has a chance of getting him to love her.
You don't have to CONVINCE her of anything. If you want out, get the h&ll out and stop wasting her time.
Why do you even care what she is feeling, if you don't love her?
Oh, I forget. You want your friend back. You don't want any relationship drama. She should just snap out of it and stop whining and be your friend again. You don't care what condition she is in, as long as YOU have a friend.
The reason you're not getting support is because you are being a not-nice person.
You can only speak for your own opinion about this.
But thank you for the analysis, while I disagree with some things, I do appreciate the response.
Originally Posted by turnera
Why do you even care what she is feeling, if you don't love her?
Are you really suggesting it's only possible to care for someone's well-being if you are in love with them? I care because I care, there is no "why".
I recognize that I've made some mistakes that got things to where they are. I don't care if you believe me or not, but I want to do the best I can from here on and try to minimize hurting my wife as I clean up from these mistakes.
I hope you spend some time trying to understand how she feels. That's probably the best way to achieve what you want. What would it take to put yourself in her shoes? What would matter enough to you, that it would devastate you to lose it?
Wow, you are one kind of a man! Very strong headed. Knows what he wants. Apparently, you do not want your wife anymore. If I am in her shoes, I would appreciate if my husband would sit down with me and tell me honestly how he feels about our relationship. If you are not happy, I will ask how I can make you happy and work on it. However, if you really want to exit, please help me take my fears away. I sense that the reason she is clinging into the marriage is because she is scared and don't have the confidence that she can make it with or without you. Help her deal with these things and I believe, you two will both get what you want at the end.