I messed up repeatedly.
This was posted on another sub-forum, but I was sent a message saying I should post it here as it may be more relevant.
This may get long, but it will honestly feel good to get out in the open.
My wife and I have been married for 8 years and together for over 9. We rushed in to marriage due to a unexpected pregnancy. Small court house wedding with a dinner at a local restaurant afterwards. She had a child from before our relationship and I didn't want to have a child with her as well without being married. After a month of marriage we lost the baby. I was heartbroken, and so was she. I grew up in a abusive home and had little to no control of my anger. After just a year of marriage I caught my wife cheating on me with a man from her work. I actually used this website years ago to help with the situation. I was devastated and I took out all my frustrations on her. Never physically, but I was rude and shut down. There was no conversation. After time I realized that I could forgive and move on so that's what we did. We talked it through, she put forth a ton of effort, and we ended up stronger in the end.
Fast forward to about 3 and a half years ago. We were seriously trying to have another baby. Her child from the previous relationship is my daughter and will be until the day I die. I cherish her. I am her dad and she knows no one else in that role. However, we decided we wanted to add another one. After trying for months and months we finally conceived. Shortly after this, my mother died. My abusive, horrible mother, who regularly insulted my wife and family and never attempted to be a part of our lives. I shouldn't have been so broken up about it, but I was. I changed completely. I isolated myself. I was there physically, but not mentally and emotionally. My wife took care of everything while pregnant. I stopped cherishing her and I broke out relationship pretty much completely. I ignored my wife on her birthday, holidays, and daily. I screwed up badly. I stopped caring about my relationships because I was convinced that I would end up just like my mother anyway, so why try? I would end up being alone, angry, and unloved so why put forth effort. Well, it was a self fulfilling prophecy. I let down my best friend and ruined my relationships with my family and in doing so I hurt my children too.
I guess I was in denial this whole time, because I thought things were getting better. About 4 months ago my wife asked if I was smoking again. I told her no, even though I was. I was embarrassed to admit it to her so I thought I could lie about it. She accidentally found my cigarettes and called me out on it. Instead of being a man of conviction I got mad and when she walked by me while I was trying to talk to her I moved in front of her with my leg and shoved her into the doorway. I didn't intend for that to happen, but it did. Since then our marriage is basically nonexistent. We have times in which we talk or spend time together, but it isn't the same. She's repeatedly asked for a divorce, only to take it back the next day after saying she loves me but isn't in love with me. She says I am incapable of change and she is just sitting back watching me fail in trying to repair the marriage that I broke. I am at a loss. I don't know how to fix this. I'm a Christian, and regularly attend church and read the bible, but I don't know where to go from here. I need help, but I don't know what to do. My wife isn't happy and it's my fault. I'm failing my best friend, but at this point I don't even know her anymore. She says she doesn't know me anymore either and that she doesn't know how we're supposed to repair a marriage when we aren't even friends anymore. She's right, but I don't want this to end. I love her and I want to be with her. We have two children to raise, but what if she's right? What if I can't change and end up destroying the little bit of our relationship we have left?
What do I do?
It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.