The kickass survival site for anyone who's ever been lied to, cheated on and left for dead.
Part 1: Sorry to hijack this post but I just need to let off Steam. I shared recently about my husband not sticking to an agreement to keep in touch when out socializing all the way to the end, letting me know when he was coming back. In this he was violating something I'd asked for as a consequence of the affair. He now texts up to a point but then 'phone dies', or he 'loses track of time' and I'm left wondering. I've shared before how it's been an awful few years, mother in laws stroke, hard to manage child wit Aspergers, work stresses and just lately a former business colleague has maliciously sued my husband and his team when they moved to open a new company. The suing has resulted in the new company not being able to find investment and now my husband and several other members of the team have laid themselves off. So my husband is out of a job. He's still involved in trying to 'save' the new company while looking for a new job, doing everything he can. Now, on top of everything we've discovered that my eldest boy 16 with Aspergers is involved with cannabis and is probably supplying friends. (Another - I didn't think it would ever happen here, I just want a nice, regular family, I am heartbroken. His Aspergers makes him very dogmatic with anti-establishment views.) Apart from one conversation with the boy (handled well by my husband) we have not had a chance to work out how to tackle it. We had a short holiday booked and, understandably, my husband wanted to put everything out of his mind. I didn't want it to spoil holiday but thought we should just check in about it. Fast forward to post holiday. Husband does acting (!) class two nights a week, so Tuesday was gone, Wednesday (last night) we'd planned to start figuring out an approach to our son and also touch base re: the financial etc problems surrounding job loss.
Wednesday (last night) we'd planned to start figuring out an approach to our son and also touch base re: the financial etc problems surrounding job loss. At 4pm he rings to say he's going to have a drink with colleague who had to cancel big 50th birthday plans (no-one has been paid for the past two months)At six PM he says finishing last drink then will be off. Two hours later I text and ring for update but no response. Forty minutes later (twenty to nine) he eventually says he is coming back in a cab. My grievance is that he stopped updating, and once again did not go along with an agreement we made post affair, did not respect me and our arrangement to spend the evening together discussing serious matters. Only updated me when the evening was mostly gone. (He arrived back at 9.20 pm. Upset of a similar nature occured only a couple of weeks back - that time he went incommunicado until 3am. People here suggested a consequence, I told him he had disrespected me and to spend the night at his parents who live nearby. I locked the main gate and door. He came home anyway and one of the older boys eventually let him in. He was so angry with me for locking him out and did not see my point 'I was not dismissing you, I went out with a friend for a drink when he couldn't have a proper party, something I understand from my 40th, it was not an offense against you." I got so angry at that as if it was to suggest I was having a problem with the drink and friend, not the dismissal of our pre-arrangement and patchy keeping in touch. In my eyes he was dismissing agreements made post affair, he did do some keeping in touch but it was very lackadaisical. I expected him home much earlier and didn't know otherwise. I also wonder what would have happened if I didn't ring and leave a message. Last time I didn't ring and he stayed out all night. He expects me to be a mind reader. It might seem a a small thing but I feel like he is still not taking what I've asked for seriously and spends a lot of his time making out that I'm overreacting. I really feel like walking out. But I know I don't want to do that with the kids. The stress of our son all along put pressure on us but the affair and marriage stress is not helping, I want him to really connect and do things with the older boys and feel so upset that one has gone down a bad track. And now more work/not work stress. It's all mixed in together. I just feel like I am not the person I could be and with him I'm my worst self.
Fragments,I so understand where you are coming from. Even if he is doing nothing really wrong and sees it that way it is not what you need and agreed to. And on top of it that is basically was blowing off such a serious issue your son. I am not sure what the consequence should be. I wish I had an answer. My husband and I have a deal he has to answer his phone or call me back asap unless he is in court or with a patient basically. Or he needs to text me back if he cannot call for some reason. It has worked for us so far. But we also get in a pattern. It is usually around a time of stress. And my husband also has this thing where I feel like he does what others want even more than what he wants. It is not even ignoring me but himself. I posted about it recently in the feeling stuck section. You should check it out. For him a lot has to do with drinking and the fact he has changed but his friends have not. So I think he is kind of figuring out things related to his friendships. But I feel like alcohol always plays a role. I would say for him it goes in cycles. He went out a couple nights this month with bball games and golf etc. now after his last night out he is turning everything down. But when will it happen again? I see it all as intertwined and it is not about the affairs anymore but what kind of marriage I want. I am not to the point of wanting to leave. We have lots of good times together but I need this resolved. It is not fair to me. I hope you find time to talk and focus on your son and then your marriage. The stress of the work situation is never good. My husband had had major stressful situations with work back to back. I finally said to him why is it we have to walk on eggshells and take care of him. If I am under stress it is basically deal with it. That has to change. I am empathic and understanding but we cannot stop dealing with our kids, lives and everything else for months because of his work stress.
Fragments of hope You feel disrespected because he did disrespect you! The fact that he doesn't realize that is his shortcoming! I can't remember if you have been in therapy but that's where he should be trying to find answers for a better future. To just write off your anger as you overreacting well what does he expect you to do post dday? Is he still so shameful that he can't understand how insecure his affair has left you in the marriage? It's taken my h a long time and me that same time to really get on the same page regarding times when we are apart, when he travels for work, he calls or text me, if he's to be late from work he sends me a text. ect...as far as drinks out with friends or co workers that had to stop unless I was included. My h understands exactly how his actions were causing me more stress and he went over board making sure that he wasn't adding more stress! It appears that your h feels like he just needs to go back to the way his life was just like the affair never happened and life is not like that post dday! I'm so sorry you're going through this! Some suggestions for this is a good discussion with him to remind him of those boundaries and use his latest examples of behavior as how this makes you feel. My h has a hard time with feelings his own and especially mine! I'm sure others will have more suggestions as well so just know, I feel your pain and I'm sending you hugs of comfort from someone who knows how you feel!
Fragments of Hope, I relate to your posts. Different circumstances, but I relate to the boundaries problem. My H's A was over a decade ago, but my Dday was <6 mos. ago, so for me it is like it just happened. My H's gateway to cheating was years of porn (since age 7) and weed. Many years I asked him to stop, many years he refused, several times he agreed to quit but it never lasted long. After Dday he promised me no more porn, no more pot and even told me how much better he felt about our marriage & sex after he quit. About 10d ago I found evidence on his computer that he was in his old video files (only for a few minutes - probably only long enough to do the obvious once). But I never laid out what would be the consequence if H ever use porn again (e.g. I'm kicking you out). Then a few days later our teenage daughter cried to me that she didn't want her father and I to divorce and she wants to be a family. Broke my heart. We have never said 'divorce' in front of her and she has no idea her dad was a cheater or a drug addict. All she knows is I cry a lot and we go to MC every week. I spoke to MC and she suggested we address it with clear boundaries in next session. I feel for you FOH, these circumstances are so complicated, not black & white. We need to have boundaries and not feel like doormats. Will your H go to MC w/ you? I find that having an independent 3rd party address these things with us is more beneficial than us getting into a debate where no one wins.
Thanks Hopeful 30 (and I will check out your other post), Teresa and Brown Eyed Girl your compassionate and understanding responses mean so much to me. It is complicated and not black and white as you said Brown Eyed Girl and I do sympathise with your experience. How do you set consequences that you are willing to lieve by. Now we have the same problem with our son and the drugs, whatever we set as a consequence, we have to be willing to do. My husband and I have had a more loving and close time over the last few days as with the extra holidays there's been a little bit of a chance to stand back, discuss everything but I hate the idea that I have to eat the dirt and that his disrespect can just be forgotten. We have this thing with our son with Aspergers, we can't be too full on/direct with our requests because he just becomes intransigent but that doesn't stop me setting boundaries and checking in with him in smaller, more frequent ways. The same now with my husband, I've mentioned that his actions hurt me, I've reiterated that phrase, I've asked why he continues to do something that hurts me when he says he cares and wants to make things up. I ask him why his actions don't match his words. These were the kinds of suggestions you were making Teresa, they make sense. I agree, Hopeful, alcohol plays a role, he just forgets and lets go and doesn't check in. My anger is also a way of him feeling as if I'm in the wrong, not him. A handy way of him circumventing guilt (he admitted this himself). The stress of work is a huge thing right now but as you said, Hopeful, it can't always come first and take over everything, otherwise there will be nothing left when it's all over.
This is so true. Recognizing that I was not perfect, nor should anyone expect me to be, was a huge part of my journey this year. I was able to apply this week to my (and everyone else's) advantage. My H had a minor surgery and needed lots of care from me. I was happy to provide it, and he was very grateful to receive it. All was going well until I noticed I was beginning to feel drained. Pressures at work, pressures with our son, and my H's need for my assistance were piling up. In the past, I would have LOVED this moment. Where I could feel like a super woman and tackle all these things head on. I could be a "perfect" caregiver and save the day. Everyone would love me even more. Everyone would say how they couldn't make it without me. Now that I know what I know, I pulled back from everything. Let everything go and went for a 3 mile jog followed by a long bath with my new bath scrub. My H missed his pain pill dose, my son didn't get his homework done, and nothing got solved at work. What DID happen is that I didn't feel resentful of my H, I wasn't short with my son, and I didn't blow up at any co workers. I can't do it all. There. I said it. No one blamed me and no one thought I was crazy for taking care of me either. I wasn't perfect, so this allowed me to be good.
Living up to that perception of being perfect is overrated now. I thought we had the perfect marriage and I had the perfect husband. No marriage or family is perfect. Social Media tends to hid reality. I know now that to keep our marriage as strong as it is now we have to keep working hard at it. Making each other a priority. After almost 2 years I feel that we are in a really good place.