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    belgravia's Avatar
    belgravia Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
    New Member

    Feb 16, 2008, 08:39 AM
    Losing myself or losing my life
    Hi all, this is a long one so please bear with me. I got married at 19 to a man whoís 20 years older and we have six children. We have been married 19 years. Where do I start... apart from him changing nappies when the children were younger he does not engage with the children at all. He basically left the upbringing of the children to me. My youngest child is 9 and eldest is 17. I have been so focused on raising the kids that I failed to take stock of how he has been treating me. He has never once in all the years we have been married taken me out for a romantic meal, he does not buy me gifts on my birthday or an anniversary all I get is a card and thatís it. I didnít even receive a card this valentineís day! The children do not even miss him when he goes away on his regular business trips. When heís at home all he does is watch television, talk on the phone, sleep and eat.
    I have a full time job which enables me to pay for things my children need and some bills, he pays all the utility bills and rent and I take care of the rest and ensure that the kids are happy and doing well in school. He has never attended a parents evening at the kids school nor does he know the kidsí teachers everything is down to me.
    I told him towards the end of last year that Iíd had enough and that I am not in love with him anymore and want a separation. He cried and begged for forgiveness vowing to change and be involved in the childrenís lives. He said he would try harder to be a better husband and father and that he would not be able to cope without me, he will kill himself if I ever leave him.
    There has to be more to life than being unhappy daily. My kids and job keep me occupied so I just get on with life as best I can but when I am alone in my room is when I think and fall apart. I donít want another man; I just want to be happy. I am a single parent within a marriage so what is the point remaining in the marriage. He says he loves me more than ever and that he will do anything for me and the children. The children donít even care if heís around or not, they only talk to him on the phone when I ask them, they tell me they have nothing to say to him as he does not do anything with them and is not interested in what they do. My eldest have even asked why he just doesnít leave as he is useless in the house. The house is falling apart but he will not do anything until he decides itís the right time. He does what he want, when he wants and I am so tired of arguing that I just go with the flow to keep the peace. I have even contemplated ending it all just to be at peace but I couldnít hurt my children because I am all they have to depend upon.
    He does not support me in anything I do, he always has a reason why I shouldnít do something I like and I have to fight my corner to do even go to the gym! He sulks when I go for a walk or just want to have some me time. I have kept everyone in my house happy for 19 yrs but I have no one to turn to. I am losing my mind trying to keep up a happy exterior for the world whilst dying inside.
    I have started having dark thoughts again about ending it all and this is my last resort for advice on how to proceed and find peace. I want to be a happy mother for my children and a happy woman for myself. I havenít felt like a woman in over a decade. I want out of this marriage for my sanity but how can I leave when he uses emotional blackmail to keep me. He tells me he is nothing without me and all he does is for the family but he does not engage with his family and his family does not even miss him when he is away, if anything, it is a relief for us all when he goes away and we fret when he returns. Help me please, I fear I may lose it and end it all because my mental state at the moment is more fragile than ever. I don't know how much longer I can play good wife and continue letting him have sex with me as he makes my skin crawl each time he touches me.
    N0help4u's Avatar
    N0help4u Posts: 19,825, Reputation: 2035
    Uber Member

    Feb 16, 2008, 09:30 AM
    First of all you say that your kids and work keep you occupied and you aren't interested in being with anybody else anyway so there really doesn't seem much point in breaking up your family for now, at least not yet, that I see.
    He says he will change but hasn't made any attempt to change. Start telling him what you want, need and expect when as the time comes. Tell him you want an evening together to 'date' once a month even if you have to make the plans and arrangements (just make sure he isn't going to weasel out) and get to know each other and take the time to talk about your dreams of *the ideal couple* you would like to be.

    Some guys haven't got a clue on what or how to change so you need to take the initiative and tell him something along the lines of I am joining the gym because I need to have something to fill the lack of married time I seem to be missing out on. It's not like WE would be using that time as quality time together.
    Don't ask him, tell him --at least until he realizes that his lack of involvement is creating an independent you and does something positive about it

    Maybe even tell him if he wants to go along for the walk or the gym tell him he is more than welcome but if he doesn't want to that is on him.
    Tell him its me time or its we time but you aren't sitting around waiting on nothing.

    With or without him there you need your independence to regroup and find yourself identity. You can treat him -in your mind- like a roommate as long as that is what he wants to act like.
    talaniman's Avatar
    talaniman Posts: 54,009, Reputation: 10852

    Feb 16, 2008, 11:45 AM
    As much as I feel your pain, I feel you are unhappy because you depend to heavily on him to make you happy. My gosh, its been almost 20 years and now you expect him to change? Not realistic. Make time in your busy life for you and what you enjoy and the things that make you happy. Your kids are old enough to give you time for yourself, and a life outside them, that you enjoy. Go for it, and stop making him, and what he does or doesn't do, an excuse to be miserable. I have been married for more than 30 years, and can safely say my wife is happy because she has always had a life outside of US, that she enjoys and makes her happy. That's my suggestion, love yourself enough, to take responsibility, for your own happiness. I would also suggest a check-up, just to make sure everything was okay, on that level. Much luck.
    N0help4u's Avatar
    N0help4u Posts: 19,825, Reputation: 2035
    Uber Member

    Feb 16, 2008, 12:02 PM
    I am not sure that it is her so much depending on him for happiness but that he has her hands tied with his emotional blackmail because he doesn't want her to have a life outside of him and he doesn't want to provide a happy life with him.
    Since he is going about things the way he is she needs to stand up for herself and tell him that if he can't make the necessary adjustments she IS going to find her own happiness through exercise, hobbies, studying things -even maybe taking some classes and me time.
    Sort of like a my way or the highway approach with an open invitation for him to be involved or not.
    talaniman's Avatar
    talaniman Posts: 54,009, Reputation: 10852

    Feb 16, 2008, 12:14 PM
    I really don't think telling him anything is necessary. I think she should just do for herself, and let him see the results, and do what he wants about it. Actions speak louder than words, and the objective, is being happy with yourself as a person.
    N0help4u's Avatar
    N0help4u Posts: 19,825, Reputation: 2035
    Uber Member

    Feb 16, 2008, 12:23 PM
    Yeah that is what she needs to do but it sounds like he tries to put his foot down and make her feel threatened if she does try to do things. She does need to get out from under that and just taking action without telling him is the best solution whenever possible. But when she does have a confrontation with him she needs to stand up for herself and tell him.
    katrina27's Avatar
    katrina27 Posts: 92, Reputation: 13
    Junior Member

    Feb 16, 2008, 02:12 PM
    I was once in a relationship that lasted 8 years. In the last two years of that relationship I started using terms like 'letting him have sex and'skin crawl'. The relationship was over. He blackmailed me emotionally. When I tried to leave he would lock the door. Physically and emotionally. We were young, had no children. So I left. He threatened suicide. I rang his parents and let them deal with him. I was no angel, but he was a negative influence. Anything positive I did he belittled. He was so insecure himself. He could be very cruel. But I could never say I hated him. We were both playing parts in the relationship.
    Now you are in a different situation. You have children and many years together. It is not realistic to lay all blame at him. Remember you stayed with him and effectively allowed him to behave this way. But I do believe you were the younger party, and he took advantage of your probable lack of experience with men. Am I right?
    No one deserves to be trappped like this. But I do think a last ditch attempt of going to marriage counselling should be looked at as your last option. Then make your big decision. And best of luck to u
    N0help4u's Avatar
    N0help4u Posts: 19,825, Reputation: 2035
    Uber Member

    Feb 16, 2008, 02:21 PM
    It isn't necessarily her letting him so much as letting things go to the point of them getting out of control. It is all too easy for a wife to just go with the flow and then one day wake up and realize where it has gotten

    Why she stays (the progression)

    She stays because he is so loving when he wants to be

    She stays as she goes about her daily routine trying to maintain some level and sense of a normal faÁade

    She stays as she blocks out the memories of his rages hoping someday he will be who he once was

    She stays because she was taught 'for better or for worse' even if it means enduring abuse

    She stays hoping the next dark moment won't happen for sometime long from now as she tries to hold her family together on her own

    She stays because he has beaten her independence, individuality and self esteem down to non existent

    She stays because he controls her mind, her freedom, her life, the money, the car

    She stays because he has convinced her she deserves the beatings; that she only needs to try harder to please him

    She stays because she holds on to the blame as hers and hers alone

    She stays because she is isolated and he is all she has left

    She stays because she fears the unfamilar more than what she has learned for survival

    She stays because she doesn't want to drag her kids down an endless trail of uncertainty

    She stays because it seems easier dealing with the pain than to leave with a sense of shame

    She stays because to leave and start all over doesn't seem like a viable option

    She knows if she kicks him out he is psychotic enough to ignore the PFA the present threats are scary enough, but she has learned to cope and keeps false hope she stays because she fears of losing all she has struggled for

    These are not her excuses; this is her reality
    sad and unhappy's Avatar
    sad and unhappy Posts: 4, Reputation: 1
    New Member

    Feb 18, 2008, 08:44 AM
    I am so with you on the skin crawl part hon. I wish I had answers for you, but you are the only one who can make these decisions. Suicide is not the answer. I actually committed myself for suicidal tendencies because I knew my kids needed me even if I felt no one else did. I wish there was some way we could communicate because we have a whole lot in common. Hang in there. When a window closes another way out opens, I truly believe that. Please find someone to talk to, you are a very important person in many ways. Try to cherish the times he's not there, that's what I do, and then flinch when you here him coming, lol. But be assured that he will be leaving again, and then the peace will resume until you can find a way out.
    Jane Smit's Avatar
    Jane Smit Posts: 24, Reputation: 2
    New Member

    Jan 29, 2009, 06:48 PM
    Hi Honey,
    I so feel your pain. I'm asuming there's no cheating. I was married 24 years, 3 sons, and 3 step daughters who lived in different state. I had a ruff childhood did not want my children to go through divorce, although I left 3 times divorced twice and still went back to the bum.
    He cheated two weeks after I got pregnante. Two sons where from a previous marriage.
    My final choice was to stay till the last child graduated from high school.
    This man I married endulged just as your husband did, enjoying the clean cloths, house,
    Meals, no participation to the children. He came and left as he pleased.
    So I joined a church, put my kids in youth group, did church activities, went to Gyms, worked part time, went to shows with lady friends. Took my kids camping let them bring
    Friends so they could run around doing there thing while I walked paths, fished, had camp
    Fire stories for the kids. Took bike rides with them. My kids and I had a blast growing up and I was glad they let me be apart of there fun with there friends. I let them have kids spend the night, tried to give them what they needed. I keeped my sorrow behind the
    Bedroom, got counseling to help make me a stronger person. Prayed a lot.
    If your husband wants sex, say no thanks, and when the kids graduate you can find
    Someone else and hopefully find a life of fun and a man in christ that will treat you as
    You should be, although sometimes you trade new problems for a different kind. Can't
    Live life with out them.
    I have tried suicide 4 months ago because the husband I have now is cheating, but I'm
    Getting stronger, and honey believe me you don't want to go there. My children become
    Angry at me because they could not understand, mine did not at 30, 39, and 40.
    Your children need you no matter what age they are, and it was selfish of me, but I know
    That dark pit and I know where you are. Your husband saying he will to it is a control thing. Being controlled is the worse thing we allow to happen to us. Remember your children and where it will leave them if your not around. Can you really see your husband
    Raising your children in the right way with you not around.
    I don't have the answer for you, I can only tell you what happen to me, and life is harder
    Today than it was before, but tell your husband how its going to be now. Take the raines and do what's right for you a your children. It will make you feel so much better to say "my kids and I can do this".
    Its just another way of looking at the stiuation your going through, and the other friend
    On this site will give you better advice I'm sure, but please pray for your answers and
    Stay strong for your kids.
    Jane Smit's Avatar
    Jane Smit Posts: 24, Reputation: 2
    New Member

    Feb 25, 2009, 06:32 PM

    You have gotten a lot of advice, good and bad, hang in there
    2ndTime's Avatar
    2ndTime Posts: 191, Reputation: 12
    Junior Member

    Nov 10, 2009, 01:50 PM

    My ex tried emotional black mails all the time. I used to fall for it time and time, until I couldn't take it anymore. I think, I'd still be in the miserable situation, if he wasn't in jail for a long time. I am not mean, my situation was similar until he got physical and got divorced when he was in jail because if I didn't kill myself, he would kill me.
    pipes12's Avatar
    pipes12 Posts: 5, Reputation: 1
    New Member

    Nov 10, 2009, 02:06 PM

    I just think you don't care about your kids and want to give all the responsibilities on your husband... thats why your fussing so much.. get on with it WOMAN!
    Catsmine's Avatar
    Catsmine Posts: 3,827, Reputation: 739
    Pest Control Expert

    Nov 10, 2009, 03:03 PM
    2nd time, this question was asked nearly two years ago. Don't you think you're a little late trying to respond? Please feel free to ask your own question, we'll all try to help.

    pipes12, please use standard English. This is an international website and some of the best experts here don't speak English well, much less chatspeak.

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