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How can I stop feeling sorry for my soon to be ex husband?(9 Posts)
I've been married for nearly 20 yrs to an older man and we separated a month ago. He has some mental health issues that have been increasingly difficult to live with. He has no family or friends. No interests really. He makes hateful comments all the time about neighbours, my family, people on the telly and is such a joy drain that I decided that I couldn't bear to live the rest of my life like this and so during lockdown I initiated our separation. He's moved out and I'm in our house.
When we bought this I had £100K from the sale of my house. He had some savings that he convinced me he'd 'keep for a rainy day'. I paid all the bills and mortgage ( I was working, he's been retired for ages) and we are now mortgage free. He still has the money he came into the marriage with and probably a bit more. So in effect he's lived rent and bills free for 20 years.
At the minute our financial agreement says I pay him a lump sum and he gets the other half if I ever sell (obviously I'm not going to do that). He hasn't signed yet though and I'm holding my breath to see if he changes his mind. I'm bitter that I'm considerably worse off after the marriage and he's considerably better off but I recognise that its the law so I'm trying to be zen about it.
I know this is the right thing to do. He was truly horrible and emotionally abusive for the last few years and I know my future peaceful life where I can be sociable and see my friends and family without any fall out will be worth the money I'm losing.
This is my problem. I am too bloody empathetic. I feel very sorry for him (yes even with his stash of cash). He's got absolutely no-one in his life and is sad and miserable. I don't hate him, it would be easier if I did. I feel very sad for him. He feels 'abandoned' and I know he's playing with my feelings again but how can I stop myself feeling so much sympathy for him and focus on my future?
Should all assets including his savings and pension be included to a pot which then gets split 50:50? This doesnt sound right, I’d speak to a lawyer before signing anything!
We have about the same amount in savings. I'm keeping another asset so in % terms I'm better off. This is being done through lawyers
You can decide to stop!
OK so he’s on his own with no friends? I his fault is that? His. If he wants friends the only solution is to go and find some. If you step up you are closing that door for him.
You don’t own him friendship. You don’t own him sympathy.
His choices made him what he is.
"His choices made him what he is." very true. That may become my mantra!
You need to give yourself the talk you would give your daughter / son / best friend. Two, three, ten years down the line you will be so angry at yourself about this (especially if your solicitor has suggested you are being generous with settlement). You are not responsible for him. The mantra above is a good one. Best of luck!
Think of him like an unhealthy habit you need to break. You're so used to taking responsibility for his feelings and the emotional swings of a toxic relationship, it's hard to stop. You've made the most important step by deciding to divorce him. Next step is to find strategies for following through.
If you had a problem with alcohol and had decided to stop drinking you wouldn't sit in the pub every day. Whilst the divorce goes through it's near impossible to never think about him, but you can still minimise your exposure to him. Think about how you can limit his opportunities to manipulate and guilt trip you, so that you can start to fill your life with healthier habits and opportunities.
I'd also read Lundy Bancroft 'why does he do that' as although you may not feel the relationship was abusive, it does sound pretty awful. I think it would give you good insight into his behaviour and help see him more objectively so you can disengage from his attempts to reel you back in.
@Curiouslypacific just wanted to let you know I keep coming back to what you've written here and your wise words really help when I'm wavering!
When I split from my ex I had to go counselling to deal with the guilt of walking away. He had hardly any friends, little family he bothered with and our daughter was only 3 at the time. The guilt I went through knowing I had a big family around me and a support system and he had no-one was horrendous.
But you are not responsible for him, you may have felt you have been responsible because you basically kept him and put a roof over his head. If you have a feeling of guilt acknowledge it briefly but everytime say to yourself 'I am not responsible'.
You are responsible for your own happiness and you have the rest of your life in front of you. Were only here once, please enjoy your time in peace away from this man.
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