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Have I done enough ?(5 Posts)
I've NC but have been a regular poster. Last night I asked H to move out and I believe it's the right decision but the reality of telling the dc's is sinking in and I guess I want some views on the situation.
This is a 2nd marriage for us both. 1st marriages were at a very young age and we each have a dd. I have a reasonably good relationship with my ex and my dd is now a young adult, who is living at home following University. We have a ds7 who has regrettably been exposed to the arguments. DSD15 stays with us EOW . Her mum is on her 3rd marriage so dsd has been through this many times in her short life.
Our issues stem from a lack of trust and I think loyalty. H has let me down during every major event in my life. Examples include making me travel hours to see dsd literally hours after I had surgery for an ectopic pg as he wouldn't change his arrangements. When I challenge him he blames me and he has never apologised. At times he has felt like a bystander in my life and I never feel that he 'gets' me. Oddly I think he loves me but doesn't know how to love a partner. He feels making changes for a partner is about losing control.
H had a dreadful (but terribly middle class) upbringing. The children were terrorised by their physically and emotionally abusive mother and H's father never protected the children. His dad went about his life ignoring the dc's distress. I think this is the model that H operates to. When life is tough he puts all his efforts into making himself feel secure. He can't look after anyone else.He could of course just be highly selfish!
Last year we were due to meet his mum at a family wedding and I was fearfully as she had previously tried to attack me whilst drunk but for months H stonewalled me/got angry with me and just refused to hear my concerns. H ended up taking the dc to the wedding and I stayed home. I felt so uncared for as H was driven to attend and blanked out my feelings. The wedding was predictably a disaster and as a result H agreed to go to solo counselling.
I felt slightly optimistic but after 9 months all that seems to have been achieved is that he is no longer stonewalling but he is now aggressive and hostile. I am still to blame for everything. He still refuses to hear me and when I have got angry and he has accused me of having a mental illness. He has hidden large bonus payments from me and as I'm a mostly a SAHM it has been very unnerving. For the last 2 months we have been sleeping in separate rooms.
We have over the years tried joint counselling but it just feels like a forum where H blames me and justifies his behaviour.
So I feel I have tried but I want to be able to look my children in the eye and say I have given it all, but have I?
Is there something else I should do before telling the dcs that we will separate?
No, nothing...delaying the inevitable will only confuse and damage them more. From your OP you have described many examples of emotionally abusive behaviour plus aggression.
This is no way to bring up children. They learn from us (as your H learnt from his parents). you are demonstrating to them that you are entitled to protect yourself and be protested from unreasonable and damaging behaviour.
You are stopping the cycle of abuse here, you are protecting yourself and your children from his damaging behaviour. You all deserve better.
At best he will pull up his behaviour for the sake of the DC which would be good for them, if he remains the same at least you will demonstrate what a normal calm loving home should be like.
Don;t let fear of the future hold you in the bad place. it will be better on the other side.
good luck, and well done.
If you tell him that you don't mean it and he should stay, then he's even less likely to take your concerns seriously in future.
Perhaps a separation will be a wake up call to him, and he will start to make a real effort to meet you half way. Perhaps it will mean the end. Right now you don't know.
Time apart will give you time to consider your options - perhaps discover that you do indeed miss him and have enough there to work a new future. Perhaps you'll discover that you're happier without him.
Continuing individual counselling might help you work out what you really want and whether it is at all realistic to get to that place with him still around.
Thank you so much for your replies.I'm not sure how I got here as I was so very clear about my expectations for a 2nd relationship.My counsellor explained that over time he just eroded my boundaries and stonewalling is highly effective as I changed my behaviour and stopped raising issues.
He had told me about his mum, early on, but I genuinely assumed she had provided nurturing at some stages but his childhood seems to have been devoid of that.They do however have impeccable manners!
He blamed me for not fully understanding his childhood, even when a counsellor explained that if you haven't gone through it you can't relate to it.
I will push ahead with separation.It will cost for him to move out but I just don't care, I'm usually cautious financially but I realise I will look back in 20 years and know I won't regret spending the money.
In the 10 years we have been together I have gone backwards by all measures (financial, career, fun) as a good relationship helps to you meet your goals whereas a negative relationship holds you back.Conversely he has thrived with my support.
His childhood sounds depressingly similar to mine. A violent mother (well, stepmother) and a father who enabled her. For him to blame his upbringing is understandable but wrong. You're entirely right to get out of this relationship, he sounds a bit of a nightmare.
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