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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
what I mean is, he can't trust me. he is always on guard looking for the next act of malice, which is actually him examining everything I say and do (ok not everything) for something of offense.

his childhood was terrible. I am heartbroken for him. but I can't help him. our marriage counsellor says he needs therapy. he needs to deal with his stuff.

it's preventing him from ever being happy. and preventing our marriage from ever being happy.

he is always wrong done by. he is a perpetual victim. he doesn't take responsibility.

it's torture

he's a wonderful person. but not a good partner at all


I'm so exhausted by it. and there is nothing I can do that I can see.

he gets in these moods and treats us all poorly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
he's doing step work (he's 18 years clean) and he thinks it's enough.

but he's been doing it always. and doing it with a sponsor for almost a year.

I don't ever see him do it, but he keeps saying he is whenever the issue comes up. and saying it takes time.

but it's been years.
 

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well, i think the only thing that you can do is to ask him to do therapy. tell him that the marriage is a drain on you, and that he needs to follow the advice of the councellor if he really wants things to get better (to get individual councelling).

good luck to you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I've read numerous books and keep trying different things, and there are some small changes where he takes more responsibility around the house or with the kids, but it's short lived and it doesn't get to the heart of the issue.

he doesn't trust me and appears convinced nobody can be trusted, he is in it alone alone alone and has to stay that way, the world is harsh and cruel and people just want to burn him.

he's not invested in our marriage or in me.

I keep thinking there is some trick. some technique. something i can say or do that will be a lightbulb going off for him! that he will awaken and see what is happening but it hasn't happened yet.

I struggle to be loving and positive but he is distant and seems to want to stay that way.

its so much work.

we just started a new counsellor this week but it feels like the last ditch effort. I told him it is. I said I can't stay in this marriage the way it is. hostile. cold. guarded. disconnected. living as room mates. and one of those roomates doesn't even clean up after himself.

there is so much tension in the house it's toxic.
 

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Sounds to me like he should have gotten himself sorted out before he ever considered getting involved with someone, let alone getting married and having kids. But since that didn't happen and the past can't be changed, he needs to seriously attack his issues. Of course, this will only happen if he WANTS it to happen...
 

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It seems you are handling it the only way possible.

You've spent years trying to work with him to become healthier. You've been supportive and loving and consistent. You haven't betrayed him in any way. Right?

Now you are telling him that you can't live with the suspicion and hostility any more and he either has to try something new to get healthy or he loses you.

If I gave you any advice, I'd tell you to do exactly what you are doing. Sometimes it takes a serious ultimatum to give people the kick in the butt that they need to do the hard work of healing. Sometimes people choose the pain they know over the uncertainty of trusting someone else. The only way you can know which your husband will do is to be serious about your ultimatum, and then the ball is entirely in his court.

So all we can do is
.
 

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Just want to give you support. I just made my DH read your post to make sure he wouln't say something similar about me. It is hard to be a parent and a spouse after having a crappy childhood. Everyday I feel like I need to work on something about my attitude. It's tiring and disheartening. I'm sorry you are having such a hard time in your relationship.

All I can say is keep encouraging therapy and working on himself. I have a hard time with self-acceptance and trusting others. I am realizing that I need to work on accepting and trusting myself so I am not always warring within myself. That seems very important to me right now. Maybe it's something your DH needs to do too.

good luck to you.
 

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Could he have borderline personality disorder? If so, honestly, I would jump ship.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by Nodtveidt View Post
Sounds to me like he should have gotten himself sorted out before he ever considered getting involved with someone, let alone getting married and having kids. But since that didn't happen and the past can't be changed, he needs to seriously attack his issues. Of course, this will only happen if he WANTS it to happen...
I think he wants it to happen. I get the feeling that he thinks he's so terrible messed up it's beyond repair, but that he probably knows deeper down that's untrue and just doesn't want to (or is afraid to) face the mess and dirty work that therapy would be

Quote:

Originally Posted by Thao View Post


It seems you are handling it the only way possible.

You've spent years trying to work with him to become healthier. You've been supportive and loving and consistent. You haven't betrayed him in any way. Right?

Now you are telling him that you can't live with the suspicion and hostility any more and he either has to try something new to get healthy or he loses you.

If I gave you any advice, I'd tell you to do exactly what you are doing. Sometimes it takes a serious ultimatum to give people the kick in the butt that they need to do the hard work of healing. Sometimes people choose the pain they know over the uncertainty of trusting someone else. The only way you can know which your husband will do is to be serious about your ultimatum, and then the ball is entirely in his court.

So all we can do is
.
well I've tried. I have failed at times for sure.

I've been known to yell. to lose patience. I have said at least a handful of times over the years I am sick of this. exhausted by this. don't want to be married to him anymore. in the heat of that same old same old arguement.

Quote:

Originally Posted by enfpintj View Post
Just want to give you support. I just made my DH read your post to make sure he wouln't say something similar about me. It is hard to be a parent and a spouse after having a crappy childhood. Everyday I feel like I need to work on something about my attitude. It's tiring and disheartening. I'm sorry you are having such a hard time in your relationship.

All I can say is keep encouraging therapy and working on himself. I have a hard time with self-acceptance and trusting others. I am realizing that I need to work on accepting and trusting myself so I am not always warring within myself. That seems very important to me right now. Maybe it's something your DH needs to do too.

good luck to you.
tanks

Quote:

Originally Posted by *MamaJen* View Post
Could he have borderline personality disorder? If so, honestly, I would jump ship.
how would I know that?
:

I know I could have been, in many ways, a better wife. I am trying to find my fault in all this without putting too much on myself. :sigh:
 

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Actually I did just think of a bit of advice. Probably you already know this, because you seem very capable, but here is is for what its worth:

If it comes to a breakup, as much as possible try to cast it in a positive light to your husband. Not, "you don't love me enough to change" or "I can't stand living with you any more", but rather "I have these needs that you are not able to meet because of your hurts, so I guess we are not a good match and we'll be happier separated".

I mean, I think that is true. I'm sure he does love you, very much. But some people are just too wounded and are really better off not being in a partnership because it is too hard for them.

Another idea is to look at actual physical conditions that may be contributing to his problems instead of just assuming it is all mental and can be overcome with "inner work". My dh is also very wounded from his childhood, and refuses counselling period, but we discovered he has ADD and when he uses ADD meds he is MUCH better able to handle his temper and moods. The wounds are still there because it is too painful for him to deal with them, but they are not as much of a problem when his ADD is under control because he can better deal with the way he expresses himself to me. But with the wounds and uncontrolled ADD he is simply incapable sometimes of trusting me or treating me like a partner. So maybe a couple of visits to doctors to check for physical problems. ADD, sleep apnea, OCD... there are lots of conditions which can make it impossible for the person to deal with their past in a constructive way, but the conditions are treatable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by Thao View Post

Another idea is to look at actual physical conditions that may be contributing to his problems instead of just assuming it is all mental and can be overcome with "inner work". My dh is also very wounded from his childhood, and refuses counselling period, but we discovered he has ADD and when he uses ADD meds he is MUCH better able to handle his temper and moods. The wounds are still there because it is too painful for him to deal with them, but they are not as much of a problem when his ADD is under control because he can better deal with the way he expresses himself to me. But with the wounds and uncontrolled ADD he is simply incapable sometimes of trusting me or treating me like a partner. So maybe a couple of visits to doctors to check for physical problems. ADD, sleep apnea, OCD... there are lots of conditions which can make it impossible for the person to deal with their past in a constructive way, but the conditions are treatable.
I don't think he has any of those. I do wonder if he's depressed but he gets so riled up at the mention that there is anything wrong with him. he's so defensive.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by eden/averymum View Post
I think he wants it to happen. I get the feeling that he thinks he's so terrible messed up it's beyond repair, but that he probably knows deeper down that's untrue and just doesn't want to (or is afraid to) face the mess and dirty work that therapy would be
Yes, it could very well be fear. Therapy doesn't always work, and people know it. Then, all you've done is waste a ton of money and time, yet nothing's changed. And some people really do believe that they are messed up beyond repair (I sure used to). But remember that you cannot help him. Always remember that one single fact no matter what.

A person with BPD is VERY hard to live with. A quick, common example:

"Does this shirt look good on me?"

"Yes, dear."

"Are you just saying that so I'll go away?"

"No dear, it really does look good on you."

"Well, what about this one?"

"I like the other one better."

"What, I don't look good in this one? Does it make me look fat and ugly? Who the
are you to judge my appearance?!"

"..."

Rinse and repeat. However, BPD is rare, and exceptionally rare amongst men (women are far more likely to have it).
 

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s Living with someone's past is ...draining. I have found putting the focus on me and my needs and meeting my needs some more while focusing on the kids to be incredibly helpful.

I've spent a lot of time managing things to avoid him being upset, getting better at being done with that. I'm finding it helps. It doesn't make him better, but it takes the pressure off of me worrying about his ups and downs. I had to come to a place where I was ok if we got divorced. I'm not planning on leaving. We still have a lot of good. But the moods and trust issues and the he is all in it alone it is the world against him have worn me down.

I'm sharing just to say I know how strong you are to still be going. I have faith in you that you can manage whatever is going to come be it in staying or leaving your marriage. Find that place inside you that makes sense, it is in there.

I had to make a big family structure change and expend energy in different directions, but since he wasn't going to change I had to. Much peace to you.
 

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Thao has given some good advice here. I'm sorry your marriage is so draining. I too think you're doing the right thing to tell him straight up that this is the last resort. I hope this therapy is helpful to you both.
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