First off, let me say THANK GOD I found this place. Second, thank you all.
I am in a pickle here. I've been married for 12 years. I have 4 children, one of which is ours, the other three are mine. I'm 35 years old and have a career.
During the first 11 years of my marriage my husband drank like a fish. He was verbally abusive to me and my kids while drunk. Night after night, day after day, week after week, month after month. Consistently. To the point I was hysterical and suicidal many time because he was just so MEAN. He called me fat (and I was) he called me a *****, he called me a ****, he called me the 'C' word, all the time. The kids saw it, and our son started calling me the same names. I was pretty depressed all the time. And I felt pretty worthless. I begged him to stop, cried, pleaded. After awhile I just got mad. I lost all the weight and decided I was going to feel better about myself and my life no matter what.
So, a year and a half ago I told him he needed to stop drinking or we were DONE. I just woke up one morning after being called horrible names in front of the kids and decided I was done. He kept drinking and due to financial reasons stayed in our home. (not to mention the fact he refused to leave, lost his job, etc) For 6 months he kept drinking and I lived my life as if I were single and started preparing the kids for a divorce. The more he drank, the more my state of mind became 'I'm a single Mom and I don't care what he does'.
During this time I met someone. Someone really great. And I fell in love with him. After a drunken fight fueled evening with the still-living-in-our-home Alcoholic I told him I wanted him GONE and that I had met someone and was happy for the first time in a decade.
THEN he decided to stop drinking. And he did. He hasn't drank anything alcoholic for 8 months. I agreed at that time to try and work things out for the sake of our child, my older kids were past the point of damage, and didn't care one way or the other.
I decided to stay. I wanted my littlest child to have a chance at a 'normal' life.
He's been great really, my husband. He's been great with the kids, the house. He's still jobless but he did complete a year of college and vocational training, he's now just looking for a job. He doesn't call me names anymore, he doesn't put me down anymore, he's just perfect.
HOWEVER, I feel like I'm living a lie. I'm trying here. I really wanted this to work out. I love him, he's the Father of my child, and he's been good to my other children.
But here's the thing....I fell 'out of love' with him many years ago. It was too painful to love him. He made me feel soo unworthy and ugly and awful that I just couldn't love him like that anymore. He really hurt me to the core of my being. Really, so many times I wanted to wreck my car into a tree and would have if I didn't have kids to think about.
I don't desire him, I don't want to touch him I don't want him to touch me.
When he compliments me I don't believe him at ALL. For so long he's said the exact opposite, why would I believe good things when all he's said to me are awful things?
I don't know what to do. I am still in love with the other person, but don't see him. I see him occasionally and it KILLS me to think about him with someone else. I don't have any type of relationship with this person at this time, and haven't since I agreed to give my marriage one last chance. But I can't avoid seeing him either. We live in a small town.
I don't want to wreck my kids lives but I feel like I'm trading my happiness for my kids and my husbands. And I feel like my husband deserves someone who can love him, desire him, want to be with him. That person is not me right now. I don't know how I would ever feel that way again honestly. But I don't think it's impossible.
I feel like a horrible person. He's done everything I've asked him to, he stopped drinking, he's the perfect husband right now. But I don't feel anywhere close to how I felt about the person I met. I didn't know I was capable of feeling that really. He's now starting to drink NA beer. 12 packs. Why? I don't know.
Can I fix this? I will gladly trade my happiness for the happiness of my children. Even though it sucks.
I would be very skeptical and show him these sites if i were you. not because you want to stay in the marriage, or because he needs to get better for you, but because you care about him as a person separate from you. whether you decide to leave him or not, he should know he's walking a thin rope drinking this stuff.
Do you know if this other guy is still interested in you? would you leave even if it meant being single?
Yes, the other guy is still interested. I'm pretty sure he was heartbroken when I stopped seeing him. He sends the occasional email or text, nothing that disrespects my husband, just wants to know how I'm doing. When I saw I 'met' him, it is kinda misleading. We were acquaintances before, he knew my life sucked. Hell, everyone did. At one point he talked me out of suicide. But there was NEVER anything going on before I filed for divorce (which I withdrew). I'm pretty sure he felt the same way about me that I did him, so if I had to guess, I'd say yes.
As far as being single....heck yes. Single sounds wonderful. I will NEVER get married again. And no one will EVER live with me and my children again.
You aren't doing your children any favors by being with a man who verbally abuses you. They learn to do the same thing (as you described). They learn to ridicule others. And they learn that is the way a wife is supposed to be treated. So, if you have boys, they will mistreat their wives in the same manner and won't even have alcohol as an excuse necessarily. If you have girls, you are teaching them to accept abuse the same as you. I would have left him a long time ago. I would at least have left him the moment he walked in the door with NA beer. It's just his pacifier beginning. Soon he will graduate to beer with alcohol. And then on to whatever he was drinking before if it wasn't beer itself. I can't know that for certain, of course. I'm just saying I wouldn't stick around to find out. If he brought anything other than a coke, I'd be gone (but then I would have left a long time ago). The only thing is I wouldn't allow that another man be the reason I leave.
I dont think you are wrong for wanting to leave him. If he's doing all of this just to keep you, then he's doing it for the wrong reasons anyway and will lapse. I agree with Susan. I think you should get away.
Susan, you are 100% correct. I SHOULD have left him a long time ago. But instead I wallowed in self pity. A few years ago I started planning for the day I would go and started my own business/career. I should have never married him. I was young, on the rebound from my first abusive marriage and was just stupid. I know that. But since he's stopped drinking he has stopped all that. He is as sweet as he can be. The NA beer thing bothers me alot. I can see how this would lead to drinking again. And believe me, the day he brings another beer in this house is the day the police remove him permanently.
I feel so guilty thinking about leaving. He's trying so hard. I don't want to hurt him.
Which is ironic as he's hurt me worse than he can imagine.
Amy, thank you for taking the time to advise. I have been trying that. I really have. But every now and then I want to go out with 'the girls' and he throws a fit. Sometimes I need to just go be me. And he is NOT, never has been, okay with that. I'm a pretty social person and he's pretty anti social. Should I just stay home and try harder or go and wait for retribution? This is a huge issue because he no longer trusts me (and honestly he never has...and for 11 years I gave him no reason not to). I am longing for the days where I can come and go without an inquisition.