Looks like my first set of posts didn't go over well...they were quite lengthy.
Wife and I have been married 7 years and together for 10. We have two children - 1 and 3A recurring theme is my anger, frustration manifested as verbal abuse and a road of broken promises. Another manifestation was getting angry, hurt, or taking offense when she would tell me that I had upset her.
Back in April my wife told me that she would give it one more go although she was only 90pct committed.
After resisting for a long time, I finally went to counseling. The results were immediate. Within a month nonsexual physical intimacy returned and shortly thereafter sexual intimacy to a place we had never been.
Throughout, though, she maintained a friendship with a man that she had previously been pregnant with and terminated that pregnancy. On her birthday wkd a few weeks ago I found a draft text with a racy pic attached. Never sent. She initially lied about it but came clean. Explained that she was finally with me mind body heart. That she chose not to send the pic because she finally decided she was there with me 100pct. We talked and I was over it.
Week later I find several FB messages telling the guy she's addicted to him, has a weakness for him. Previously she indicated that she would stop talking to him. Multiple times, including during her bday wkd that she would stop. Then a week later he gets in touch and she's talking, again.
I went on a weekend bender blaming myself to her. She would explain that this was her fault, that she knew it hurting me and us.
It went on to the following Momday when I deleted all of my friends except her and berated myself the entire day culminating in a post where I exclaimed Great, I'll be 36 and single...
She subsequently tells me it's over.
In talking to her I remind her of what she told me only ten days prior about being there 100pct with me, recognizing the mistake she was about to make by sending a pic and then not doing it.
She now is telling me that she's given a lot in the relationship. She's not done things that she's wanted because of my complaints that we wouldn't have as much time together - masters degree, job. She tells me that she should have left long ago but didn't for fear of hurting me or the kids. That she feels weak and dependent and doesn't like that.
I love this woman. I love our kids. I love our family. All the more so since I started counseling.
She and I went to our first counseling session a week ago. She says she's not sure if she wants to save the marriage. Despite that she agreed to another session for tomorrow.
I need some advice. I want to the Love Busters questionnaires with her. But I don't know how to bring it up. I want to be the best husband I can, just not sure how not to smother her.
TIA for the attention and any advice. Posted via Mobile Device
Well, we're going to counseling today. I talked to my wife about my concern about the counselor not being pro-marriage. She seemed receptive to changing counselors if the current is not pro-marriage. I contacted the counselor and simply asked. She wasn't sure what I was asking and explained that she works on areas where the spouses agree and provides space where disagreement is until agreement reached. I think I'm comfortable with that.
I'm wondering if I should also give my wife the LB questionnaire at the same time as counseling??
Re: Condensed version of I dont want it to be over
Your wife is still in the emotional affair fog, take a deep breath you are going to need strength and fortitude.. and lots of kindness, patience, love and TLC to your wife..No bad behaviours, aggression, anger, dominance..
You need to stop the affair before you start fixing the marriage..
Start with your wife sending a no contact letter, it tells him, her and you that it is over. She writes, you read she sends.
All means of contact must cease, delete his mail address, block him from facebook, myspace etc, change her mail address and delete the old one. Your wife needs to do this willingly or it goes underground and is harder to resolve.
Next the counsellor must be pro marriage or fire them, this is to rebuild your marriage, at the end of the day it is yours and your wife’s decision what to do.
Remember there is a reason why the affair started; you absolutely need to understand that you will need to change as well to make this a successful marriage. Be open minded to the input and listen as well as hear.
A counsellor is there to help to explore, uncover and resolve these issues. This is for the long term and if the marriage stays together you and your wife need to make changes that are permanent otherwise you are back in the same position.
This is an equal partnership both of you must be happy in it.
Part of her explanation for wanting the marriage over is that throughout our relationship that the broken promises from me to change, giving up pursuing things (degree, employment, albeit parttime), feeling that she couldn't make friends because of us (not wanting to dump our relationship issues on them)...has made her feel that she's lost part of herself, that she feels weak staying in a marriage like this. When does this get addressed?
Also, when should I go about the no contact agreement? Right now I want to show her that I am changing (started a while back), that I'm hearing her complaints re: feeling weak and want to support her without smothering her. Seems I should start here as I think she was reaching out this other person for something she couldn't share with me.
Lastly, she and the kids are going to MI for August. This was planned even before we moved to the west coast in December. I'm worried about out of sight and out of mind. She leaves Aug 4. How can I approach this?
Again, thanks in advance! Posted via Mobile Device
Update - we saw the counselor yesterday and it's bleak. She basically explained that she's doing the counseling for the kids so that we can get through this civilly. She also explained that while she loves me she is not in love with me. Further that right now she just doesn't care about working on us as she sees little to no hope of us being fixed.
I explained that we were doing so well in such a short time after I started counseling on my own - better parents, we were more physically intimate (sexually and non-sexually), etc. She agreed that we were but said that she still couldn't stop the EA.
She feels that if she were to try to work on this that she would once again be conceding and giving in as she feels she has done the entire relationship by not getting a masters degree, not working, not doing other things because she believed I didn't want her doing these things.
She kept using the word separate so the counselor had me ask her what separation looked like. My wife explained that she needs time to figure herself out. Figure out what she wants to do. Though she did say that she doesn't "want" divorce.
Our counselor said she sees the two of us in different places and we need a safe place to talk about these things, that she hears a difference between separation and divorce, and says that if the two of us decide to work on this then there's possibilities of it working if we do the hard work.
We have a third appt next Monday and then my wife leaves for our home state for a month with the children (planned before we moved away).
I have no idea what to do. I do know I don't want this over. That I now understand how I have hurt my wife throughout the marriage and how that has made her feel.
Insights and advice would be most welcomed! Posted via Mobile Device
Re: Condensed version of I dont want it to be over
Separation means she wants to try the other guy out. She wants to live in his camp for a bit and see what it “feels like” to her, how he treats her etc.
No divorce? Could mean she wants to let you down gently, but I doubt it. I think it means she wants you to leave the door open just in case she doesn’t like the other man’s camp.
She’s effectively keeping one foot in your camp while trying out the other guy’s camp with her other foot. It’s a horrible way of going about ending a marriage. Or not ending a marriage. I find it quite despicable, abhorrent.
I don't think I'm deluding myself here, but I have seen her FB msg to him that she's making dramatic changes in her life and one of those is no longer communicating with him. And even so, he's 2000 miles away with a wife and kid. Posted via Mobile Device
Thanks, Hunt. I just don't know what to do. She believes she needs to find herself. This is because our marriage has caused her to forego doing certain things. For example, she believes she is a passive person and because of that, agreed with me that pursuing a masters degree when she would be a stay at home mom would be wasteful (I don't recall it that way). So she decided not to pursue it.
She feels that if she decides to work on it that she is conceding, again, giving up.
I just don't know what to do that gives us a chance to get over that resentment and get her to a place where she's not feeling that working on this is giving in/conceding...
I really appreciate the insight and advice. Posted via Mobile Device
Re: Condensed version of I dont want it to be over
First, keep monitoring her computer and phone to make sure she really isn't contacting him.
Second, tell her that, for one last concession to you, no matter how your marriage turns out, it would help you if she wrote OM a no contact letter. It is done for psychological reasons - a mental break.
Third, just hand her the LB questionnaire and tell her you NEED to know exactly what you've done to contribute to her unhappiness, and this questionnaire will help you wrap your brain around it. Ask her to fill it out. Once she does, stop doing everything on that list that's not attached to her affair.
Fourth, sit her down and tell her you want to hear what HER life would have looked like if she could/would have done whatever she wanted - all that stuff she missed out on. Once you understand those things specifically, do some thinking, and come back to her, sit her down, and show her HOW she can have all those things while still being married. Show her how you are going to facilitate them - how you'll watch the kids while she takes courses, how you're going to adjust your finances to pay for her school, whatever it takes. SHOW her that you are going to change your life so she can start getting what she wants - WITH you.
Thanks, again for all of the advice. I don't want to monitor her phone anymore. I see messages that are hurtful. As I have been monitoring, though I haven't seen any additional contact. I vowed last night to no longer monitor. I have been thinking about how to ask her but given the cicrumstances now I feel as though I would be further pushing her away.
She leaves next wednesday for home for the month of august. We have a counseling session on monday. She has expressed that she only feels safe discussing us while at couseling and I have taken that to mean that she's not interested in talking between sessions. But I wanna communicate with her before she leaves and more than that hour with the counselor. I've thought about writing a letter to give her when she leaves. Good idea? The point would be to convey some of what Hunt suggested above.
In the meantime she's gone for a month. When she gets back, we have until December when our lease in the house is up. The counselor commented that this gives us time to work on things.
How do I avoid smothering her? I want to do nice things, be kind, be loving. But then I see a text msg where she tells a friend that me being nice to her makes her stomach turn...
Lastly, I think she has told one of her three siblings about her not wanting to be with me. Is it wrong to contact that one or any other to talkl about this?
Ask her to fill out the Love Buster questionnaire and the Emotional Needs questionnaire from marriagebuilders.com. It will tell you what she does and doesn't want.
Turnera, I have come to respect your advice as I have lurked around here for the last week...so I appreciate your responses.
I saved both of those last night and have been agonizing over how and when to give them to her and ask that she look at them. I'm afraid that she will say no and that I'll further alienate her. What if she does say no?
I want her to have her space and not smother her so I'm hesitant to even try...
The worst thing she could say is no, but I don't want her to be exasperated or frustrated that I asked her to do this.
We had a good talk last night about finances and her going back to work. We've never really been able to discuss our finances because I'd end up getting angry and using out financial difficulties to blast myself as a poor earner, bad husband, or would go off about if we couldn't afford this then we need to make draconian changes. Last night I expressed to her that while I didn't want her to go back to work (would mean seeing her less, especially during the weekends), I would suport her and help her find a job. I told her that I'd be working on a budget while she was gone to share with her when she got back and work on it together.
I'm so worried about her trip back home, abouit her telling her family about not wanting to be with me, about the intent to separate. For me it makes it seem all the more inevitable.
I know she's told her best friend and one sister. That makes me feel that the decision is in stone...that there's no turning back.
Though I keep believing that given time we can be in love with each other. She loves me, just not in love with me...just be the best man, husband, father I can be. Cuz I know they are things I can do that will ensure that we'll never be together... Posted via Mobile Device