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Deep strata of resentment, advice on how to deal with it.

(13 Posts)
mirtzapine Thu 20-Mar-14 10:58:24

Or pass the car keys love, we're gonna drive the children to a stately home.

Over the past 7 years, DW has cause three major events that has built up a huge amount of resentment in me. These occurred, respectively, seven years ago, four years ago and nine months ago. Each one a repetition of the previous, but more devastating in the havoc it cause in the family and each with about a year or so run up to it occurring.

These three major events have been due to alcohol abuse and debt abuse. The stress and fallout from these events caused me to loose jobs on each occasion, because I was focused on sorting out the problems and looking after the children.

Each occasion was a potential LTB, but because we have 2 DDs it makes it so much harder to LTB, plus I'll take the resentment and anger with me.

You see, I perceive that the alcohol and debt abuse was not fair to inflict on those nearest to her, me and the DDs'. Also I cannot comprehend why someone did not have the inner strength and willpower to call a halt to it as or before the problems spiralled out of control.

The only answer I get is, I don't know way I did it and I didn't know how to stop, so I hid the problem until it got so bad I couldn't hide it any longer. I find that inadequate, it doesn't help me comprehend and understand.

I've tried Duluth and CBT for anger management, neither have worked so I'm about to embark on an empathic approach. I'm also trying to re-work my use of English in the way I think and talk, as the anger has made my language much more brutal and base than it used to be.

So with all that in mind, can resentment, not your common or garden variety, but a more deep seated resentment and the anger and rage that are part and parcel of it truly be dealt with and done away with?

Basically, I'm asking if there is hope, that we could fix the dysfunctions and build a happy, well adjusted family, mainly for the future well-being of the DDs' but also for our future well-being.

onetiredmummy Thu 20-Mar-14 11:25:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Dahlen Thu 20-Mar-14 11:42:12

This is all about you so far. You managing your anger and you working through your own resentment. What about your DW? Does she actually acknowledge the difficulties she's caused you in a sufficient way? IOW is she planning to embark on her own voyage of self-discovery and treatment? Because unless she has decided to do that off her own back (rather than you demanding it), I see any plans you have to 'fix' your family as doomed to failure.

If, however, she wants to work on things as badly as you do, then there is always hope for a much happier future.

mirtzapine Thu 20-Mar-14 11:57:31

onetiredmummy I'm not sure that she's an addict, many because, she's been to alcohol abuse therapy and has passed, I personally believe with her its a bad habit/behaviour that spirals out of control, a bit like the boom bust phenomenon.

I don't minimise her behaviour, the resentment, anger and rage doesn't let me, I'm concerned that the resentment brings about a co-dependant cycle, which must stop. I'm resentful about her drinking/debting (for want of a better word). That makes her drink and get into money problems which in turn makes me resentful, ad-infinitum.

The only thing i can effectively control in this situation, is myself, so the change must start with me, but how can I tell if she is truly on-board with sorting this out?

mirtzapine Thu 20-Mar-14 12:17:06

Dahlen Does she actually acknowledge the difficulties she's caused you in a sufficient way yes, she acknowledges the difficulties, but not in a way that is sufficient for me to get past my resentment. I don't know why I did it and I didn't know how to stop is verbatim her answer.

I'm going to give a concrete answer as to why it's not enough. If someone was to ask me. "Mirtz, Why in your late teens did you smoke and snort heroin?" My answer would be, "because I really enjoyed the feelings and sensations it gave me, it was a real out of body, out of world experience". If you also include, "Why did you stop?" again, my answer is very clear. I wasn't getting enough of a hit off it and a junky friend offered to share his needle, so I could get a faster bigger hit. That was the line I was not prepared to cross, not just injecting, but sharing works as well. For me that was the point at which I stopped. So for me I did know why I was doing it and I did know how to stop.

Dahlen Thu 20-Mar-14 12:28:08

I think you need to accept that she may not know why she does what she does. Self-destructive behaviour is very complex like that.

But none of that matters. She may not know why she behaves as she does, but she does know that her behaviour is deeply hurtful and destructive to the family unit because you have told her.

Therefore, unless she is proactive about preventing further hurt/damage, which will necessarily involve trying to find out why she behaves as she does, I'm not remotely surprised you can't get past your resentment. Anything else seems to suggest that you should just "get over it" which would make anyone feel bad and worry about their relationship.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 20-Mar-14 12:32:20

You've posted lots of times before about your DW's various behaviours and your desire to control her to the nth degree. The two of you are totally incompatible and you make each other miserable. I feel very sorry for your DDs growing up in the middle of such a dysfunctional family when you could give them a much nicer childhood if you accepted it's not going to work and separated.

TwittyMcTwitterson Thu 20-Mar-14 14:34:30

I have been through this recently with my dad. I understand it is not the same by any means but perhaps my experience can help you or answer your questions. I'm at work now and really really shouldn't be on mumsnet so I'm marking my place. I'll read your post more thoroughly later.

I will tell you though, there is always hope smile

TwittyMcTwitterson Thu 20-Mar-14 18:14:34

I can't speak about debt apart from my own but my dad split from his girlfriend and went on an almighty drinking binge for approx 2-3 months. I live over 100 miles away and drove up and down approx 3 times a week. More if needed. I was emotionally exhausted because of the constant 'talks' I'd be having. I can't tell you the amount of times I left work early. Had it been much longer I think it woul have lost me my job.

He was very much like your DW. Not an addict by name but definitely for that time an addict by nature. He's only done this once, so again not a comparison but I know the feelings this raises.

I had a resentment, particularly when the sorry I received was basically, it wasn't me.

I find they say 'I had no control' 'when you are taken over by this thing, there's nothing you can do' 'I had no power, I wouldn't do that to you normally'

My dad put my DD in danger once (though only because I chose to stay out in the cold because I thought he'd jumped out of my car and run into the woods to kill himself) and it took me a long time to forgive.

How is your wife the rest of the time? Is this person that takes over similar to the person it takes over? Iyswim?

Do you feel this will happen a fourth time? If you do, you know what needs to be done.

I think talking/counselling can go a very long way for you and her. I expect you are very very hurt. You have a right to feel that way. You need to find the cause of her behaviour and fix it

mirtzapine Thu 20-Mar-14 20:41:41

Dahlen I understand what you mean, its getting to the acceptance part of managing resentment I'm having the difficulty getting to.

DW has actually done sterling work in changing her approach with the counselling she's had over the last six weeks. Except if I say anything positive about it I'm told not to bring up the subject. On the other hand if I say nothing, I'm told I'm not being positive about the changes... never seem to get my timing right.

And as the subject of my previous posts has been brought up. That was a a lot of out of context stuff summarised in one sentence, I don't feel that does it justice at all. So who would have custody then? And the evidence that I've read is that divorce heaps more dysfunction on top of dysfunction for children.

EveesMummy Will it happen a fourth time? Well I don't know, we're still dealing with this one - had the bailiffs around beginning of last week which came as a shock when I opened the door. How is she the rest of the time? I guess you mean sober and not alcohol impaired. Well, the pros outweigh the cons at this moment in time.

I think I know what the cause is, self esteem and self confidence and a fear of confrontation (either person or problem), she knows that and has to address it herself but that's IMO. Trouble is is that the resentment I feel is a hurdle in being able to be a supportive partner, the only thing I can control and change is myself and hope that positive changes that we are both attempting will stick and have a ripple effect throughout the family

TwittyMcTwitterson Thu 20-Mar-14 21:12:09

Perhaps by boosting her self esteem/confidence you can help her more than any other way?

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 20-Mar-14 21:23:14

'Out of context'? I don't think so. You may not actually be flogging a dead horse but you're obsessively trying to exert control over someone who is not controllable. I genuinely think you are part of the problem Rather than do the intelligent thing, accept it's over and work out a way of co-parenting your DC in a positive way separately, you and your DW persist in trapping the poor child in this appalling situation. If you want dysfunction, you're modelling it right now.... Divorce can hardly make it worse and would probably improve her life.

Chickens123 Fri 21-Mar-14 09:03:14

Op may be the happy, well adjusted family is there just not with this bloke! Are you doing these therapies to make it better? Or to make you more able to cope with the way things are? It sound a silly question but I wonder if we try to fix stuff when it can't be fixed. Then we blame ourselves when it goes 'wrong'.

Therapy is ok (and Ive had loads) but it never really helped me personally, not really.
Pills from my experience don't help, they just cover up the cracks.

You mentioned alcohol and debt. I can sort of understand the reasoning here. I've had problems with prescription drug addiction I was addicted for 20 + years ( yes I know people laugh but codeine is converted to opiate in your body and yes it is as bad a heroin withdrawal!) it's taken almost 3 years to get this stuff out of my system. There is no quick fix for addiction in my experience. I was prescribed them for a massive bike accident and then to manage pain/stress etc from a violent relationship. Yes I know I took them and yes I know I hid the addiction but I did it because I didn't want people to know/ judge and make vicious comments. There are groups for partners of ex drug users I wonder if there are groups for partners of ex debtors too? It might be worth googling it and finding out.
I'm beginning to wonder if inner peace comes from acceptance of ones lot in life. Everyone's journey is different. To be honest the therapy and drugs I got just made things a lot worse. But then others have found them a life saver. Maybe it just depends where you are in your life, where you want it to go and where fate will take you? All heavy duty questions which we spend a lifetime answering and we still have to cook the dinner and get the kids to school. X

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