|Topic Review (Newest First)|
|07-07-2005 06:57 AM|
Hello again, Tom here. I thought I would just share some of my thoughts and feelings. I don't want to sound like I am "making a case" for anything here. Upon reflection, some of my first post sounded defensive , and I want to avoid that tone.
I want to tell you how much I love my wife. I am in love with her. I am deeply committed to her. I believe in her, even when she does not believe in herself. I encouraged her to go back to college, to complete a degree, because I think she has a lot to give. I think she is far more loving than she wants to believe. I think it hurts to love that much. I think she is the most beautiful woman in the world. I trust her with my very life and with the lives of our two precious children. And I don't think that makes me a doormat, I think trust is what marriage is.
I have gone to great lengths to change the way I behave in order to help her feel happy, safe, and loved. I know I still have things to work on, but I have admitted where I need to change, and I am taking concrete steps to bring about these changes. I'm willing to do more. I'm willing to do whatever it takes. I still believe we can work it out.
Having said all that, if she doesn't want to be a mother, all this affair stuff is really beside the point. Only she can decide what the right thing to do is.
I want her to be happy. I told her that the girls and I would miss her terribly if she left, but that we would be okay. I am just turning this whole thing over to the care of whatever-you-wanna-call-it. We will always have a relationship of some kind, whatever form it takes. I'm willing to go to great lengths to work things out, but I am also willing to accept it if she doesn't want to work things out. It really is up to her what she wants to do with her life.
In a strange way, it was kind of a relief to hear about this deep and basic issue about mothering. For so long, I have felt like I am bending over backwards to make her happy, and it never seemed to be enough. It all makes more sense now. That's not to say that I have no part in her unhappiness, but it has been very healthy for me to detach myself from feeeling responsible for her emotional state. It causes nothing but more trouble when I try to "read" her feelings or (god help me) "fix" the way she feels.
I am just going to keep doing the best I can to be the best father I can, the best husband I can, and let her figure out what the hell she wants to do.
My tears are for my precious, beautiful children. They are the most beautiful girls in the world, and I don't know what it would do to them if their mother left. Still, I don't want her to stay out of some "guilt trip". I want her to do what is going to make her life meaningful and fulfilling. If parenting is not her path, so be it. For myself, I have known since the first moment that i held my first child that I am a father, that i will always be a father, that it is the single most important aspect of my identity from here on, that everything I have been through up to this point has been so that I can be a good father to these children. I accept that not everyone feels that way, but I can't imagine it any other way.
I feel great compassion and sorrow for my beloved partner right now. She is going through so much, she is in so much pain. I hope she can find some peace soon.
As for me, the waiting is really hard, but I don't want to rush her, either. I want her to make the "right" decision, I just have to remember that I don't know what the "right" decision is for her. Only her higher self knows that. Part of me wishes that she would just decide so I could make plans, but in the grand scheme of things, a few months is really nothing. I can wait, and give her the time and space she needs to be true to herself. I do not want to force the issue, but I did say that she has to decide. I have made my choice. I have a family. I am committed to my family, for the rest of my life. Our relationship may be altered drastically, but we will always be connected.
We celebrated our fourth wedding anniversary last week. I couldn't find a card that said what I wanted at the last minute (I'm a last minute person, drives her nuts), so I wrote her a message in a blank card shaped like a chicken (because she is so fond of chickens):
Four years ago
I told the world
I will always love you
Many things have changed
But not that
I will always
|07-05-2005 09:26 PM|
I can't vote yes or no on this one - it depends is my vote. Was it the right option / choice / decision for MY parents? YES. A resounding yes a hundred times over. Did I suffer as a kid (and adult!) because of it. Sure. Would I want them back together, then or now to alleviate my suffering. NOPE.
For me, is it an option? No. It is a last resort and one that I can't ever see happening. Of course, that's easy to say now.
|07-05-2005 08:52 PM|
Well, Just got told that I was beign kicked out by my emotionally unavailable/abusive PITA Not So DH.
Guess it was more of an option than I thought.... .
|07-04-2005 01:34 PM|
|07-04-2005 02:28 AM|
But... I don't think divorce is wrong either. I agree with Dr. Phil's "children would rather come from a broken home than live in one" and many stories I read hear leave me thinking the same thing.
|07-03-2005 10:53 AM|
You think you would be able to, until it actually happens... trust is a very important thing, no trust tears a relationship apart. I would know, my ex that I divorced had an affair.
|07-02-2005 02:13 PM|
|JamesMama||I agree with most of the pp's (didn't read the whole thread) IMO, divorce is rarely an option. Even if my DH had one affair I think I'd be able to move on, but I know my DH and he would never cheat on me, he's just not that type of person. Also, even though I know my DH would never do it, if he ever hit me or my son that would be a deal breaker. I'd leave no if, ands, or buts.|
|07-02-2005 01:56 PM|
The day after they got married, he started telling her that she should quit university and go back to work, so that he could finish his degree. (The unspoken part being that his was more important.) She'd be able to work more hours and still take care of child care - and he could finish school. Can you imagine the sinking feeling in your stomach when you realize you've just made a major commitment to someone who's been lying to you from the get go?
I went through similar things with my ex. We had agreed on many things ahead of time (who would manage the finances, division of labour/housework, etc.). Once the ring was on my finger, the whole deal changed. There's really no way to tell ahead of time with people like that.
|07-02-2005 10:55 AM|
|alicia622||I voted divorce is not an option although I will clarify to say there are a few situations where divorce would be- abuse/addiction/adultery (straight from the mouth of Dr. Laura I believe most things can be worked out and you really need to be thoughtful when you choose your partner so you pick a 'good one'. When children are in the picture, I think you have to work twice as hard at getting through the tough times.|
|07-02-2005 03:10 AM|
|MrsMoe||If you are unhappy, and you have tried all means neccessary for repair and it's not working or the relationship is controling or abusive, why waste your life?|
|05-25-2005 03:59 PM|
|Emzachsmama||I assume we are talking about problems that don't include abuse, so I voted 'no'...divorce is not an option for our marriage. We are commited to making it work. I think society takes marriage and divorce much, much too lightly. We have had our problems for sure, but we work things out instead of just giving up.|
|05-24-2005 09:18 PM|
i find it very interesting that you feel you can make these sorts of value judgments about people that you don't even know and whose lives you know nothing about. you really *don't* know if people worked hard to save their marriage before they decided to divorce.
Actually, I don't spend much time contemplating the marriages of strangers, so yes, I was talking about people I know well. I was thinking of close friends of ours who are at this very moment separated and talking divorce because "she's too controlling" and he "wants his freedom to come and go as he pleases." They have two kids under 7. They went to counseling twice. I was thinking of my brother, whose wife left him because "he was too boring." They have three kids; she took the baby and left the others. They got no counseling. I was thinking of my sister who had one fight ever with her husband and they divorced because she can't cope with conflict. They didn't even bother to talk about it.
I'm forty; I could go on for quite a while here . . . .
|05-24-2005 08:50 PM|
I can understand that...but it's not what these people were talking about at all. The whole attitude was like they couldn't even understand why I'd be nervous about making a lifelong commitment, because they simply couldn't imagine anyone seeing marriage as such a thing.
There are many divorces under the no-fault rules and the one-year separation that really haven't got a lot to do with abuse or adultery or anything like that. It really boils doesn to "marriage is more work than I thought it would be". I've seen a few of them in action, and I don't understand why they ever bothered to get married.
|05-24-2005 08:46 PM|
|Greaseball||I wouldn't have gotten married if there were absolutely no way out but death, given, as I stated previously, the high rates of spousal abuse and infidelity. Oh, and the high rates of child sexual abuse.|
|05-24-2005 08:20 PM|
|Storm Bride||I actually do think our society has a "marriage is disposable" mentality, and it bothers me a lot. I do think there are good reasons for divorce, but I can't help remembering how many people said "why are you so nervous? If it doesn't work out, you can always get a divorce" when I got married the first time. I don't understand getting married at all if you're thinking that way.|
|05-24-2005 07:38 PM|
|Greaseball||But we don't know what went wrong in those marriages. Remember, the stats for battered women are very high. So are the stats for infidelity. It's likely that many of those marriages broke up over stupid petty things and people not being willing to work, but what about the rest?|
|05-24-2005 07:36 PM|
That's what I was trying to say! Thanks abac. Sorry if I offended anyone. That was not my intention.
|05-24-2005 01:13 PM|
|05-24-2005 01:07 PM|
We were never actually bankrupt, because I refused to accrue any debt - ever. But, we often couldn't put food on the table for a couple of days (that was back when ds was b/f...so he ate, although I can't swear the quality of my milk was the best), despite the fact that I worked full-time.
I found out after the breakup that he'd "played doctor" with a friend's daughter when they were "both kids"...he was 15, and she was 8. This was just before we got together, and I had no idea until after he turned 30!! Divorce is an option when the marriage doesn't really exist in the first place.
I think when I became a parent, I gave up the right to stay with a man who would starve my son so that he could smoke pot and snort coke. I think when I had ds, I gave up my right to stay with my ex (not that I wanted to by the time we left).
|05-24-2005 12:27 PM|
|lisalou||I voted yes, but divorce for certain issues is definitely an option to me. I'm another child of a loveless marriage and my parents didn't think we knew but I think both my sister and I said, "About time" when they finally got divorced. I know my husband and I would try to work through any issues that come up not for dd but for us. And I can't imagine dh abusing me or becoming a drug addict or us not communicating with each other. Although having a child has strained that at times. I made a commitment for forever and intend to keep it as does my husband but I also know better than to say "never".|
|05-24-2005 11:25 AM|
|abac||I think it's pretty safe to say that with over half of all marriages ending in divorce, our society views marriage as "disposable." It has nothing to do with judging individual people; it's a judgement about our societal views of marriage-and a pretty accurate one IMO.|
|05-24-2005 10:03 AM|
and, "marriage is disposable"? huh?
|05-24-2005 09:20 AM|
During our premarital counseling, our pastor told us, "Never utter the 'D' word. Once you say it, it becomes an option." Well, in the heat of the moment, we have been known to toss the word about, but I'm hoping we'll never really consider it an option.
You don't know how many times I've used those words . . . marriage is disposable. We live in a disposable society . . . from Swiffer sheets to styrofoam to spouses. Don't do any real work, just make it easy on yourself. It's the American way.
|05-24-2005 01:31 AM|
|EmmaJean||I'm surprised (kind of) that the results are so close! I voted no. When we got married, part of our DIY counseling we did included promising to each other that divorce is not an option (except for cheating or abuse). Our POV was that when you go into a marriage knowing that there really isn't an option out, you're more apt to work harder at it. Worked so far! There are several times I've had the *fleeting* thought that being on my own would be better (hey, life can get crazy sometimes! I know everybody's had "those days"!). But just remembering that "divorce is not an option" is somehow comforting and grounding. Knowing that dh believes in it too makes it stronger too. Marriage is so disposable in our society...|
|05-23-2005 11:58 PM|
Problem was, STBX thought the EARLY relationship was the way it was ALWAYS supposed to be.
yeah, right :
|05-23-2005 02:55 PM|
And I disagree that it's not reasonable to expect happiness. I believe one should not expect the whirlwind romance, the passion, the great sex every day...but I think happiness is reasonable. There will be hardship, there may be times when you wonder what other choices you could have made...but I think underlying that, there could be happiness. And always love.
Sometimes people make mistakes. People get married for the wrong reasons to the wrong people, and I don't think they should be punished for their mistakes by having to remain together when their hearts are not in it. Sometimes personal happiness is more important than the sanctity of marriage. If one member of a couple is sure that she or he would be happier married to someone else, or being single, why not go for it?
When I hear that people with certain characterisitcs have a lower divorce rate, I think, but are they happy? Do they just not get a divorce because of social norms, or are they truly loving toward one another and don't want to live without the other?
|05-23-2005 02:47 PM|
Yes, marriage is a commitment, but it's a *TWO PARTY* commitment, and can only be maintained if *BOTH PARTIES* continue to be willing to hold up their end of the bargain.
Staying "committed" to a partner who is not commited to you (and/or your children), is just pure foolishness.
|05-23-2005 02:27 PM|
|05-23-2005 02:19 PM|
My inclination is to vote no divorce isn't an option when there are problems in your marriage because I wouldn't consider those issues to be "problems in my marriage" I'd consider them serious criminal activities for which divorce was an option. I wouldn't consider divorce for any of the numerous ways my DH disappoints me or doesn't live up to his end of the bargain etc. It seems though that the OP would want me to vote yes.
|05-23-2005 09:55 AM|
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