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Can't get past the negative view of myself

(28 Posts)
duffybeatmetoit Fri 05-Oct-12 11:08:19

DH left me a few months ago. Apparently he'd known that he didn't want to be with me since before we'd married but felt pressured into going along with it although getting married had been his idea.

We have a much loved DD and he now lives several hours drive away. It kills me that his need to be away from me was so great that he was prepared to be a bit part in his daughter's life rather than stay.

I adored him and I thought we'd had had many wonderful times together (until recently when I knew he wasn't happy but thought it was down to his lack of work rather than me). All those memories have been destroyed and much as people tell me nice things about myself, I can't believe them.

riceasnice Fri 05-Oct-12 12:18:30

How awful for you. This sounds to me like you have been very unlucky, unemployment can destroy a man's self-esteem, and he has somehow decided his relationship with you was the problem.
He must have wanted to marry you if it was his idea but he is now rewriting history.
Sounds like he has big issues if he needs to move so far away. Don't take it personally.
You MUST believe the nice things people say about you! Try to think of yourself as a friend, be kind to yourself.
Take care xxxx

duffybeatmetoit Fri 05-Oct-12 12:47:50

He's moved to be with family but isn't making many attempts to see DD although he is working now. On the rare occasions he speaks to me he sounds like nothing has happened and somehow that makes it worse. I can't get my head round him being chatty when being with me was unbearable for him.

I tell myself he is probably doing it to maintain the relationship with DD (although he never asks me how she is doing or what I'm up to - just goes on about his new life) but I find it so hard when my self esteem has been destroyed to make conversation. I also have his mother's explanation in my head - she told me the split was because I was too old and boring.

I hate the fact that I am never going to be free of him and that I have to find some way of coping with this so that DD doesn't suffer.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 05-Oct-12 13:24:30

If this came as a bolt out of the blue just a few short months ago, be kind to yourself because you are still very much in shock. Try to cut out the 'chatty' conversations now because that's keeping you confused and upset. You have to tell yourself very firmly that this man is NOT... your lover, your partner, your friend. He's simply your DD's father. Likewise don't talk to his mother because she is unlikely to ever criticise him. Limit communication to the absolute bare bones of whatever you need to arrange for your DD and keep it very much arms length.

If this man wasn't happy it wasn't your fault or your job to correct that. Are you seeing a solicitor?

Mayisout Fri 05-Oct-12 14:20:22

just goes on about his new life - what a shit!

hoopieghirl Fri 05-Oct-12 15:34:07

I am sorry this has happened to you, please don't be too hard on yourself. I doubt very much of what your husband said was true, he is just trying to justify his behaviour. You are a competent, confident woman and you will come through this.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 05-Oct-12 15:46:47

BTW... at the same time as cutting contact with him to a bare minimum, keep spending as much time as possible with those people who are telling you nice things about yourself. Surround yourself solely with those that make you feel good. Reject anyone that makes you feel less than good. Do what you want to do, eat what you want to eat, go where you want to go. Answer to no-one but yourself. It's all part of the long process of resetting your world so that you are at the centre. That's how you regain a positive view of yourself.

Valdeeves Fri 05-Oct-12 19:10:00

His mum sounds like a real b***h - how dare she speak to you like that?
He sounds like a selfish idiot to me based around the way he is treating his daughter. I've said this to many women - don't blame yourself for a bad man. You loved him - good. Now spend some time nurturing yourself and recovering from the trauma. I am sure you have so much to offer and so much to offer someone who really deserves you.

Valdeeves Fri 05-Oct-12 19:10:57

I'd recommend getting some self help books about confidence and self esteem - this wkend! Start reading them now xxx

Lueji Fri 05-Oct-12 19:38:27

Please do not believe anything this man tells you.
Why would you believe him rather than other people? He's just trying to justify leaving you.

It seems that his self confidence was low and probably he felt judged by you (not your fault) in that he couldn't "provide" for his family.
Ultimately, this is someone who doesn't really care about you or your DD, but only himself and how he is perceived.

This, because all he cares about is telling you about his new life and felt the need to trash you to his mum.

I wonder if he would want you to beg him to come back. hmm

Personally, I'd cut any unnecessary conversation and pass the phone on straight to DD if she's old enough. I might send regular emails about DD (also to have a record just in case) or cut him off with updates on DD. Or just ask when he's planning on seeing her.

Have any of you started divorce proceedings?

Markingthehours Fri 05-Oct-12 19:52:17

DH left me a few months ago. Apparently he'd known that he didn't want to be with me since before we'd married but felt pressured into going along with it

This is absolute bullshit.

If you take it at face value, it's wickedly spineless and so weak to marry someone if you know you aren't really up for it. How unfair that would be - would you do that to someone? Marry them, get them to commit to you, have a child with you - all the time knowing that you didn't really feel enough for them.

If you don't take it at face value, then it's a slimey attempt to justify the guilt he feels for leaving his wife and child, moving so far away and making very little attempt to maintain his relationship with his daughter and be a decent father. He's trying to effectively blame you for the fact that he's cut nearly all contact with his DD. Saying you pressurised him into your relationship. How honourable he is. NOT.

Having said all that - HE is not really your concern. YOU are. So what are your good points?
What are you good at?
What are good qualities?
What would other people answer to those questions?

Markingthehours Fri 05-Oct-12 19:53:51

--- your good qualities?

duffybeatmetoit Fri 05-Oct-12 22:29:14

I keep thinking about events in our life and looking at them from the perspective of him not wanting to be with me and then wondering how I managed to make such a catastrophic error of judgement.

My friends see me as strong, confident and funny but I just feel that if the man who knew me better than anyone and meant the world to me doesn't like me or find me desirable then that carries more weight.

We had DD before we married and other friends were also getting married which is why he says that he felt pressured. DD answers the phone and doesn't say much then just puts the phone down. He never rings back. Messages about DD I send via text.

MIL has always had a dim view of my parenting ability but I had thought that she approved of me as his wife. Not having to live with her demands was one of the few plus points of the split.

Divorce hasn't been discussed - neither of us could fund it. I have disassociated myself from him with the credit agencies and the council.

stickercharts Fri 05-Oct-12 22:46:53

It sounds like you have great friends who really value you and I think all the qualities they describe you as are wonderful. He was a bad egg. I'm so sorry for all your disappointment and that you find yourself having to rethink what you thought was true. Try not to let the memories feel spoilt. I really doubt you would have deluded yourself that you were happy. Those memories don't have to be erased or made worthless, despite whatever he has said to tarnish them. You'll be fine, I really think you will. Don't let him take anymore of your life than he has already. A big hug, you're doing so well.

Charbon Fri 05-Oct-12 22:54:31

Have you considered the possibility that everything he said to you about his reasons for leaving was a lie?

I'm guessing you've realised the main reason that men who leave suddenly re-write history like that; because there is another woman and either an overlapping relationship or one that's about to start.

As he lives so far away and the only family member you mention is toxic in the extreme, you wouldn't necessarily know if there was another relationship, of course. But if I had to put money on whether he's telling the truth versus the presence of someone else, it would be on the latter. The most common reason for men to leave a marriage suddenly is for someone else.

It often helps to know the truth because although it's horrible and painful, it can stop all the self-doubt and self-blame. It might have had nothing to do with you as a person, or even his happiness in your relationship. If it's an affair, it's much more to do with his issues and as described on another thread, re-writing of history in order to justify his decision.

It might help you to think back to that period when you thought he was unhappy because of lack of work. What other behaviour did you notice around that time? Attachment to his phone? Irritability and picking fault? Unwillingness to engage in family life? Think back to when things changed and try to pinpoint what behaviour you remember.

duffybeatmetoit Fri 05-Oct-12 23:17:37

Charbon I don't think he left for another woman, but if he did that doesn't really change much. I accept that he is rewriting history for his own purposes but at the end of the day he doesn't want me or the life we had together.

Stickercharts those memories are worthless now. I don't trust my ability to distinguish what was real anymore, they just make me feel a fool now.

Igetknockeddownbutgetupagain Fri 05-Oct-12 23:20:22

I can't get my head around the comment about being 'old and boring' - good God, what an awful thing to say to someone. Sounds like the apple didn't fall far from the tree with Mother in Law and your ex, Op.

'Old' and 'boring' are words old boring people say, in my humble opinion.

And she's a fuckwit for saying it smile

Charbon Fri 05-Oct-12 23:37:02

I understand why you feel like that duffy but for many other people, it really does make a difference to how they view their past, their sense of value as a person and critically, their ex-partner.

When people are having affairs, often the feelings they have for their spouse and their new partner are nothing more than a mirage. When infatuated or in love with someone new, the feelings for that person rise in inverse proportion to the feelings for the old partner. Some people are incapable of having intense romantic feelings for two people and so they must distance themselves from their partner to let the new person in. So it's nothing the old partner has done or not done; she is still the same person he fell in love with and was happy with, before the new person came into view. But from the person having an affair's perspective, they know what they are doing is wrong so in order to make sense of it, they re-write history and find reasons for their actions.

Sometimes it takes a lot of distance from the situation for them to realise this was what was happening and by the time they do, it's often too late to return to the partner whose memories they trashed.

For the rejected partner, the discovery of an affair can therefore help to process those emotions much more quickly. You're right that it doesn't change the bottom line, but it can help you with your own view of yourself. That you haven't suddenly become unloveable or undesirable as a person, you just had the bad luck to be married to someone who had an affair and couldn't admit that was why he was leaving. That might hopefully lead to your own conclusion that you don't want him either - or his mother!

Februarytwotimes Fri 05-Oct-12 23:52:39

I'm knackered and off to bed so this is short but Christ On A Bike you're lucky to be away from those people even if it doesn't seem like it now.

duffybeatmetoit Sat 06-Oct-12 00:04:35

I think I was just a fling and when I fell pg he attempted to do the decent thing but couldn't sustain it any longer. I wish he could have walked away back then as the pain would have been so much less. I couldn't take him back as I don't think he ever really felt that deeply about me.

Markingthehours Sat 06-Oct-12 00:29:41

For what it's worth I too immediately thought ow when I read your first post.

Strong confident and funny sounds really good duffy.

Now what are you good at? What are your proudest moments? What are the things you like about yourself?

izzyizin Sat 06-Oct-12 01:10:35

How many billions of men are there in the world, of which he's only one?

I take the view that if you've loved and been left by a couple of million or so you may have reason to maybe take a closer look at yourself to ascertain whether you're been doing something wrong, but chances are that any defects will be in them and your only problem is likely to be poor judgement as far as the opposite sex is concerned.

As for his dm, a slim slip of a 36yo with an exciting jetset lifestyle is she? If not, her problem's likely to be Freudian jealousy.

He might have meant 'the world' to you but you didn't mean the same to him. It happens and it's no reason to put yourself down. Stop answering the phone to him and listen to what your friends are telling you.

Maybe a change of hairstyle/wardrobe will give you a boost as you unexpectedly catch sight of the externally altered you in a plate glass window/mirror and think 'who's that gorgeous woman?' before realising that it's you that's got the wow factor.

With regard not being able to afford to divorce; do it online at extremely low cost and seek advice from the Legal matters board if you get stuck with any of the forms. If you're on a low income you may be eligibe for legal aid, in which you're best advised to get proceedings underway now as changes that are due to come into effect early next year may negate any current eligibility you have.

riceasnice Sat 06-Oct-12 16:19:53

The more you post, the more your ex sounds like an utter arse. And you sound lovely.
You're not a fool: love is illusory. We all want to believe in the illusion.
Relate do counselling to help you get through a separation... talking about it can stop things going round and round in your head.
Plan some lovely things to do for you and dd: make some new (arse-free) memories! xx

Singledadoftwo Sat 06-Oct-12 20:51:47

Happens the other way round too. mum wanted her life back and left still love her but I'm here getting on with it maybe I think I never really knew her? Or maybe she just changed. I worked hard to provide everything for the family but didn't look after the important things our relationship lesson learnt the hard way you will be ok use relate they can really help even just on your own I did you are more informed and helps with closure a bit.

duffybeatmetoit Sat 06-Oct-12 22:03:05

Izzyizin - MIL tried (and failed) to get me to wear a red dress for my wedding - she turned up in a white suit. Apart from outlining why I wasn't right for her son, she's been telling me how untrustworthy my xDH is since the split. She insists that I will always be a part of their family and expected to go to every family event. (This seems largely down to her view that "DD is ours"). I have tried to point out that is not realistic but they seem to think I would be happy to be with them and presumably any other women that DH gets off with in the meantime.

Single dad - coping with 2 children - you have my admiration. I know how hard it is with just one. Like you I wonder whether I ever really knew him.

It's always so much easier to believe that the failings lie with yourself and that if you'd done something differently it would all be ok. I just don't think I can trust in my own judgement anymore. I feel so guilty that my DD is having to go through this because he can't stand being with me.

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