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Old 07-30-2020, 12:06 PM   #1
equinox101
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Default So Much Resistance

Hello everyone,

A little background, I hope I don't ramble too much. Just looking for some fresh insights.

I am a 36 year old male, married for 5 years with a 3 (almost 4) year old daughter. My marriage has been struggling for a long time, especially after my daughter was born. Soon after we got married I realized I had made a mistake but I was too scared to rectify it. Our personalities, which always seemed to mesh when we were dating and engaged, began to clash once we started living together. The sex became less and less frequent. My wife suddenly got pregnant without us ever discussing it (I believed she was taking birth control throughout) and communication kept breaking down further and further. I rarely express my anger and we don't fight very often because I am extremely conflict averse. My wife does not communicate well but tends to anger very easily. Every time I bring something up that she doesn't like it leads to a terrible argument where she either stonewalls me or says very hurtful things. I have trouble combating this. She is bossy and extremely domineering - traits she always had but that have gotten worse since our daughter was born.

My daughter has been one of the best things that ever happened to me, so I do not regret the marriage in that regard. I am extremely close with our daughter. Since the pandemic I essentially watch her every day because my work is suspended indefinitely. My wife has a...strange...relationship with our daughter. She clearly loves her very much, but probably TOO much. She still breastfeeds her and my daughter has a lot of trouble sleeping without being breastfed. Our daughter sleeps in our bed even though her bed is right next to ours. We have a 2 bedroom apartment but my daughter does not have her own room because my wife uses the 2nd bedroom as a clothes/shoe walk-in closet with items piled everywhere. She also hoards clothes and toys for my daughter, ordering hundreds of outfits and playthings from Amazon and other stores. It's somewhat disturbing. My wife is never violent or hurtful to our daughter, but she can grow easily irritated and angry under stress and that occasionally comes out toward our daughter. My daughter has told me "mommy is mad" or "mommy is nervous" or "mommy is frustrated" several times.

I've grown more and more frustrated myself and we have had several arguments where divorce was mentioned. My wife seems like she would welcome it and I have very little emotional attachment to her at this point so a divorce would not bother me on that level. However, I am a product of divorce and my mom and dad still don't speak after 30 years, so I definitely want to maintain a good co-parent relationship. Despite not loving her in the marital sense anymore, I still love her as a person and refuse to hate her. But during these arguments I saw some disturbing signs - my wife started insisting that she hates where we live, always hated it, hates our apartment (which I owned prior to marriage) and hates the City we live in. She says she wants to move across the country and take our daughter. She has no family or friends outside the City we live in, so it makes little sense. It seems designed to hurt me or scare me out of beginning the process. And it works...because I start thinking how contentious this could become. She says she is not interested in money, but I could foresee her making this a nightmare both in terms of finances and custody. I am familiar with the law and know my rights, but I know it can drag on a long time if she becomes very difficult. I also know it will be difficult on our daughter and that gives me a lot of pause. I am very close with her family, especially my mother-in-law who is a wonderful person, and that makes it even harder.

I have been in therapy for years but my wife refuses to go. After these arguments blow over she acts as if nothing happened and life goes back to normal (unpleasant for me). I know I would be happier if I wasn't married to her anymore, but I have tremendous tremendous anxiety taking even the first steps in this process. It took me months to research the legal intricacies of divorce law in my state. The laws are favorable toward me in many ways, so that made me optimistic. But now I'm stuck on not wanting to consult with a lawyer - it's like something within me keeps putting it off or holding me back. So I end up sitting and thinking about it all day but doing little.

Has anyone overcome this terrible resistance, this inability to take action even though you know it is the right thing? Do you have any resources that helped? Therapy has helped a bit but not enough it seems.

Thank you for any and all help.
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:28 AM   #2
Vegansphynx
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Default Re: So Much Resistance

Hi. Iím so sorry youíre struggling with this. I struggled for years about leaving my husband. Our situation was entirely different, but still. He was a really bad alcoholic (later diagnosed with bipolar, although I believe heís BPD,) refused to get help to get sober, and eventually made me feel like I was crazy when suspecting he was using. Eventually, he got violent, although I rarely had marks, and he would constantly threaten to kill him self if I left him. At one point I worked 3 jobs while he couldnít keep one and would literally sit around and drink all day and troll FB for old flames from whom to get sympathy. I felt paralyzed. And despite all of this, I still loved him deeply (I know...itís crazy.)

Finally, after 10 years of this insanity, I gave him an ultimatum about going to rehab. Guess what he chose? So I left our apt (even though I was paying for it.) I was ready to call it quits, but then he was attacked and almost died from a traumatic brain injury. I felt so guilty b/c I was convinced it wouldnít have happened if Iíd been there. Suffice it to say, we remained separated for the next 5 years while still trying to work things out. Weíd speak daily (we now live in diff states) and discuss our future together.

Finally, 3 weeks ago-after yet another massive relapse-he admitted to cheating on me for 2 months with a 21 yr old addict whom heíd allowed to move in with him. Iím devastated. I feel like the floor has been ripped out from under me. I filed for divorce on Monday. Now he wonít talk to me about ANYTHING and allowed her to text me vile things from his phone. My heart is in pieces, and at 39 after devoting 15 years to someone, Iím all alone and he wonít even explain how/why this happened, or acknowledge how much heís hurt me or that our relationship every meant anything.
I say all this in order to encourage you to follow your instincts. If youíre unhappy now; leave. Before you arenít the one making the choices and theyíre thrust upon you. But if staying married is really what you want for whatever the reason; make the conscious choice to stay. Donít delude yourself into thinking it will be anything other than what it is and work toward finding contentment with that. Ultimately, the point is to CHOOSE and do so for yourself. Donít make the mistakes I did in staying out of guilt, fear, and a hope for something my husband NEVER indicated he could do. Because the bottom WILL get ripped out from under you since youíre not in the driverís seat-so to speak-of your own life.

Be well.
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Old 07-31-2020, 10:45 PM   #3
NewlyAlone
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Default Re: So Much Resistance

It sounds like you're already cold towards her which makes sense from how she's acting. I've never personally felt children should be the reason people stay together. I think it shows more of a dysfunctional life than how productive a life could be with 2 happy, albeit separate, parents. Wishing you strength and sending hugs and love your way.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:08 AM   #4
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Default Re: So Much Resistance

I am so Sorry for what you're going through, @equinox101! Consulting a lawyer won't Hurt. I'd suggest to give it a try and Listen to him. I COMPLETELY Agree with @Vegansphynx about choosing your own path. Do what you feel like it would be the BEST option for EveryOne. Definitely listen to the WISE and WONDERFUL @Vegansphynx! I Hope that things will turn out REALLY Well! Sending many Safe, Warm Hugs to BOTH you, @equinox101, your Family, your FriEnds, your Daughter, your Wife, your Therapist, your Mother-In-Law, your Parents and EVERYONE of your Loved Ones! Try to do your best! Keep fighting and keep rocking NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS, OK?!
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Old 08-01-2020, 11:06 AM   #5
equinox101
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Default Re: So Much Resistance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vegansphynx View Post
Hi. Iím so sorry youíre struggling with this. I struggled for years about leaving my husband. Our situation was entirely different, but still. He was a really bad alcoholic (later diagnosed with bipolar, although I believe heís BPD,) refused to get help to get sober, and eventually made me feel like I was crazy when suspecting he was using. Eventually, he got violent, although I rarely had marks, and he would constantly threaten to kill him self if I left him. At one point I worked 3 jobs while he couldnít keep one and would literally sit around and drink all day and troll FB for old flames from whom to get sympathy. I felt paralyzed. And despite all of this, I still loved him deeply (I know...itís crazy.)

Finally, after 10 years of this insanity, I gave him an ultimatum about going to rehab. Guess what he chose? So I left our apt (even though I was paying for it.) I was ready to call it quits, but then he was attacked and almost died from a traumatic brain injury. I felt so guilty b/c I was convinced it wouldnít have happened if Iíd been there. Suffice it to say, we remained separated for the next 5 years while still trying to work things out. Weíd speak daily (we now live in diff states) and discuss our future together.

Finally, 3 weeks ago-after yet another massive relapse-he admitted to cheating on me for 2 months with a 21 yr old addict whom heíd allowed to move in with him. Iím devastated. I feel like the floor has been ripped out from under me. I filed for divorce on Monday. Now he wonít talk to me about ANYTHING and allowed her to text me vile things from his phone. My heart is in pieces, and at 39 after devoting 15 years to someone, Iím all alone and he wonít even explain how/why this happened, or acknowledge how much heís hurt me or that our relationship every meant anything.
I say all this in order to encourage you to follow your instincts. If youíre unhappy now; leave. Before you arenít the one making the choices and theyíre thrust upon you. But if staying married is really what you want for whatever the reason; make the conscious choice to stay. Donít delude yourself into thinking it will be anything other than what it is and work toward finding contentment with that. Ultimately, the point is to CHOOSE and do so for yourself. Donít make the mistakes I did in staying out of guilt, fear, and a hope for something my husband NEVER indicated he could do. Because the bottom WILL get ripped out from under you since youíre not in the driverís seat-so to speak-of your own life.

Be well.
I really appreciate you taking the time to share your story with me and offering encouragement. You have really been through hell with this person and must be very committed in order to have stayed that long. I agree that ultimately staying for those reasons is a mistake.

One thing I'm 95% sure of is my wife WILL NOT change. Some people suggested "oh if you move somewhere she likes or somewhere where she felt more like the property belonged to her maybe she'd be happier and things would work." I guess there is a very very small chance of that but I find it unlikely and am not willing to upend everything I enjoy (I like where we live, I like my job etc.) on the off-chance it will make things better. Sometimes this makes me feel guilty and selfish, but I've seen too much evidence to the contrary that this would not make a significant difference. Even if it made her *slightly* happier and more bearable, too much damage has been done. I agree 100% with your advice and have, in many ways, already made my decision. I am just finding a lot of resistance in following through and preparing myself for the fallout.
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Old 08-01-2020, 11:09 AM   #6
equinox101
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Default Re: So Much Resistance

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewlyAlone View Post
It sounds like you're already cold towards her which makes sense from how she's acting. I've never personally felt children should be the reason people stay together. I think it shows more of a dysfunctional life than how productive a life could be with 2 happy, albeit separate, parents. Wishing you strength and sending hugs and love your way.
Thank you so much for the reply. On a logical level I know that two separate parents who aren't always fighting is better than staying together for the child. However it's like my mind sabotages this idea and says "well you guys don't really *fight* much, there's just little to no emotion and it's like being roommates...and we parent OK together, maybe I should just suck it up and deal." It's bad thinking that I've been trying to fight through to take action.
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Old 08-01-2020, 11:11 AM   #7
equinox101
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Default Re: So Much Resistance

Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyCheeky View Post
I am so Sorry for what you're going through, @equinox101! Consulting a lawyer won't Hurt. I'd suggest to give it a try and Listen to him. I COMPLETELY Agree with @Vegansphynx about choosing your own path. Do what you feel like it would be the BEST option for EveryOne. Definitely listen to the WISE and WONDERFUL @Vegansphynx! I Hope that things will turn out REALLY Well! Sending many Safe, Warm Hugs to BOTH you, @equinox101, your Family, your FriEnds, your Daughter, your Wife, your Therapist, your Mother-In-Law, your Parents and EVERYONE of your Loved Ones! Try to do your best! Keep fighting and keep rocking NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS, OK?!
Thank you for the uplifting reply. I know there will be differing ideas on what is best for everyone and that is what makes it hard. But ultimately I have to make the choice.
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