... tell me about your journey, your feelings, and your reasons
If you divorced w/o a major deal breaker like abuse or cheating....
I'm still in the thinking stage of this journey. I've got some more counselling lined up, for me individually and for us as a couple. I'm so beyond ready to just walk away, but to be fair, I think I need to just commit to another round of counselling and see what happens. I'm reading "Too Good to Go, Too Bad to Stay" right now, and failed the very first question. I do believe that any relationship CAN work, but my husband either can't or isn't willing to come to the party, and after all these years, I'm about pooped out and ready to walk away.
What I'm doing: getting my ducks in a row so I can go back to school, dealing with lawyers to sort out custody and if I can figure out a way to leave the province, getting ready to go visit my parents (in another country) for a few months to take a break and see if a bit of distance will give me the space to think a little more clearly. My primary hang ups at this point are logistical; how to support myself and children (I've been a SAHM for several years, one degree is outdated, and the other is incomplete), how to manage a household on my own (my husband isn't very helpful, but he does deal with the kids sometimes), how to maximize my time with the kids without screwing their dad over, and, this one is sort of crazy, but how I could have more kids down the line.
I feel like a total failure. I'm ashamed. I'm sad. I'm angry. I'm finished being in this relationship by myself. If my children were ever in a relationship like mine, my heart would just break, and I know that this is what I'm modelling for them, so something needs to change. It doesn't seem like my husband and I can change our relationship, so I think it's time to go (yes, we have previously gone through couples counselling).
OP, what are you dealing with? Thinking about? Your question is a tall order... ;)
I divorced because he was serious about it this time. He was already really unstable sometimes. We had been together 10 years and ever since we had kids (5 years ago), he has seemed like things were not right between us. He did not want to settle down and other normal marriage fights. He did not appreciate me and how much I did at all! Now he really acted like he REALLY wanted out, he seemed like he hated me, he was acting single again (parties, out every night, substances, etc.) AND he knew my price. He wanted freedom. He told me I could have full custody of the kids, the house, and that he wanted a dissolution--civility was possible. So I took it and figured if we got back together, at least I could have the stability of the house and the kids. And he would get his act together maybe.... We went to numerous counseling sessions and he hated all of the counselors and blamed them for blaming him....
Bottom line, divorce was a selfish proposition for us when it came to the kids--they do not understand and are hurt by it. I honestly think that it would have been better for the kids if we would have stayed together...we have said that it was all not worth it. But if one person is not willing to change and there are lines drawn in the sand, what can you do? It is like a game of chicken...who is willing to change? What are you willing to give up to be in this relationship? What are you teaching your kids about partnership and marriage?
I now understand the experts and why they think it is so harmful; it was horrible for the kids. But I know why I did what I did and it was the right decision because things would have only gotten worse for us--he did not appreciate what he had and mootched off me most of my life. Still has... As a matter of fact, things got WAY WORSE--CRAZY WORSE!! He did not know how to live on his own, let alone take care of kids. But we are still friends; I married him for a reason. He would love to have me back, but there has been so much hurt and irresponsibility. But I still think it is best for the kids to have their father as much as possible (not that I know what that means to my relationship with him). I will always love him and we talk about rekindling it sometimes.....but it might just be reminiscing, nothing has happened. Whatever I decide, it will be a long time in the road. One thing is for certain--I am not in any position to date (I am not over him and I am still a bed sharing, breastfeeding mama--HOT STUFF! lol). So that is my lame story of divorce. No abuse, but I still feel as if I was trying to make a better life for me and the kids. He needed to grow up and it was not fair for me to stay. And he has finally realized that. Thanks. It has actually be quite therapeutic to share. ;)
I could have written your post about a year ago. Now my divorce - after 21 years and 3 children - will be complete in a few months. I am truly truly sorry for what you are going through and I feel the pain of your words very deeply, "I feel like a total failure. I'm ashamed. I'm sad. I'm angry." I can tell you it hasn't been an easy process for me, but I'm better than I was by a long shot. And most importantly, my kids are doing well - really they are.
Prayerful positive vibes to you.
Yeah, I'm kind of in the same boat as Selkat in many ways.
There was no abuse or cheating, but there was no support or understanding. We tried counseling over various years and he never fully engaged--he even walked out on more than one counselor. He woudl tell me things would be different but they never were. He promised me this summer things would be different: so then he spent this one saturday doing a family bbq and actually helping out 50/50 and it was fun. I told him at the end of the day that it was really great and if this is the kind of change he's making then I could stay in it. He said, "well, it was only one day." I wanted to check if he meant one day of many more wonderful ones to come, but he stated that he meant he was only willing to do that kind of 50/50 share of the work for one day. that was the last straw for me. It just seemed too hopeless.
On the other hand, I've been trying to do some online research of some site to send to him that would give him a good way of looking at the divorce. He is so sure the kids will be ruined and that it is all my fault, but he is also quick to put them in the middle (my other post), that I wanted to try to find a resource to share (not that he'd read it). Anyway, in doing the research it was really depressing. It made me feel awful and guilty again about doing this to the kids. I know it has an impact, but they make it seem so devastating! When I was a kid, practically all of my friends' parents were divorced and it really wasn' t a huge deal. I sometimes felt like it was only a big deal because counselors or the media made it a big deal. I still wonder about that: if more than half the kids today have divorced parents, why do we treat it like such a horrible taboo trauma? If we all treated it like it's just another way to go through life, wouldn't that help kids more?