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How to 'let it go'

(32 Posts)
alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 01:21:48

Short version of a long story - around a year ago my husband did a few things that made me question his loyalty to me (not cheating, not financial - which makes it hard because it's not a 'relationship ending' thing) and it's proving harder than I thought to get over it.

I'm still really angry at him and I just can't seem to let go of those thoughts. Obviously he has apologised and tried to make it up to me but I find myself wanting more. I don't know exactly what I want though, it just feels so unjust and I can't shake the resentment.

How do I stop myself bringing up what he did? (it's more a question of what he didn't do - think failing to stick up for me in a big way - so it's a lack of action rather than a deliberate wrongdoing)

I genuinely do want to move on, I love him and I believe he is sorry and loves me too. But there is a small part of me that comes out every so often that is so angry and wants some sort of retribution? I don't even know.

For background I do find it hard to forgive and can hold a grudge. I would usually cut out friends in this situation although that would happen very infrequently - I don't make a habit of falling out with people.

Can we get over this? And, more importantly, how?

janaus Thu 22-Sep-16 04:55:06

I wish I knew too ... Let it go, or just get over it. Easier said than done. 12 months later

Charlie97 Thu 22-Sep-16 06:15:37

Going to lurk here, not husband but sister. Would love some tips.

Marilynsbigsister Thu 22-Sep-16 06:23:27

I live with s man like this. It's absolutely impossible. I also did a similar non cheating non financial thing.. (It was ten years ago and also involved being unsupportive when I really should have been - I am very sorry and have said so not less than a thousand times)
The problem was he continued to use it as a stick to beat me with. I was genuinely remorseful and had said so, what more can one say. ? It's unfair and actually quite unhinged to keep bringing it up. You can't say ok, move on.. and not do it yourself. It's very unfair. With the absence of a time machine there is nothing the offender can do. (Except go to other people concerned and explain that you have decided your spouse was in fact right about the original incident - if this is possible)
After 2 years of this behaviour , supposed forgiveness but bringing up at every opportunity , I left him. It was the shock he needed to put it into perspective. I explained that his grudge holding was impossible to live with and you can't have it both ways. You cannot love and cherish your spouse and at the same time say you forgive and yet seethe with resentment. He was devastated as he loves me very much (as I do him) and it was only when faced with a far greater evil than the one he perceived I had done to him - that he finally recognised that he was being unfair. My DH eventually got some counselling through his GP to talk about his inability to ' let things go' (he also cuts friends that he thinks have slighted him, holds things against everyone not just me and kids but wider family and friends) anyway it helped a lot and has lead to a much improved and very happy marriage for the last 12 yrs. You really do have to ' let it go ' if you want to be with him.. and go and get help to do so if you really don't know how. Good luck.

RedMapleLeaf Thu 22-Sep-16 06:46:08

I disagree that you can't get over this. I say this because I think it's more to do with you and your processes than your husband.

If I had time I'd recommend Transactional Analysis and rackets and also mindfulness.

Joysmum Thu 22-Sep-16 07:36:19

You can't let something go until you've mentally processed and come to terms with it. That'll take lots of discussions, maybe some counselling, and time.

Question is, is it worth it?

Isetan Thu 22-Sep-16 07:41:50

Resentment just doesn't go away and if left untreated, it will corrode your marriage. You need to understand where the resentment comes from because there's a very big chance that its origins predate the trigger.

Go find a therapist and start the process.

SandyY2K Thu 22-Sep-16 07:59:19

If he's done all he can
If he's genuinely remorseful
If he truly recognised he was wrong
If he's never done it or not done it since
And if you otherwise have a good relationship ..... then you need to decide if you'd rather not be with him or be with him.

You say it's not enough .... so you should know what more he could do. It might be so huge a thing that you just can't get over it.

Counselling could help you figure this out.

daisychain01 Thu 22-Sep-16 08:11:02

ala do you think your DH has really grasped how much he hurt you by not demonstrating loyalty the last time round? If the person doesn't understand exactly what they did wrong and why it hurt so much, they are likely to repeat the same behaviour again if the situation arises again.

Maybe your resentment stems from the fact you don't feel confident he wouldn't let you down again next time round, and that any apology he gave was a "politician's apology", you know one of those ones that's a tick in the box but not really saying sorry eg " I'm sorry you felt hurt by what I did... " and making out it's your issue, rather than them taking any responsibility.

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 08:13:32

That's exactly the problem. It feels like he could do more but when pressed I don't actually know what he could do.

The only thing that helps me to 'get over it' is a technique someone taught me of imagining your perfect life and then imagining what needs to happen in order for your perfect life to take hold. Obviously in my perfect life I have put this behind me and we have moved on to somewhere stronger. I need to keep hold of this thought which is hard when the resentment comes...

Maybe I do need a therapist...

marilynsbigsister I recognise so much of our relationship in that and I'm sure my husband feels similarly. Deep down he sees it as 'a stick to beat him with' whereas, for me, it's more about my own unhappiness. I'm glad it worked out for you but I don't think it would work that way in my relationship. If he walked out I would let him go.

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 08:16:08

daisychain there's a lot of truth in what you've said, it's certainly something I've thought many times. I am looking for assurance that he won't do it again. And he hasn't. For a while. But at the time it was more than one event (all visibly different but with the same result for me) that put us in this position.

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 08:25:04

It is a vicious circle. I can't be happy without letting go of the resentment but I can't let go of the resentment because for some reason I'm just not happy...

hellsbellsmelons Thu 22-Sep-16 08:34:13

If he walked out I would let him go
This is very telling.
Do you have kids together?

hermione2016 Thu 22-Sep-16 08:38:25

"if he walked out, you would let him go", that's quite telling and perhaps you are looking for ways to get out of the marriage as it's not valuable to you.

I think you need to explore your feelings with a counsellor as it seems you are using this as a way to prevent closeness.

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 10:48:18

Not because I don't love him or because I secretly want him to leave. I just wouldn't chase him. I think that's because I think he should be chasing me. He is in the wrong. Argh. Why am I so stubborn sad

daisychain01 Thu 22-Sep-16 11:49:27

You aren't being stubborn ala. you have a right to your feelings, but it does seem you cannot get the resolution to this situation by yourself. It seems like your DH isn't on the journey with you, and probably doesn't see it as a problem in the relationship.

This very circumstance was the breaking of a relationship I had many years ago. It was only after we broke up that the person bothered to engage in the situation, before that it was just "daisychain's issue" almost a joke and a bit of an ego boost.

I don't want to project onto your situation, so I think some independent external advice through counselling will help you explore your individual situation and help you work towards a resolution. And I do hope they recommend your DH become engaged in it at some point, not as a 'stick to beat' but rather seeking to understand from your PoV. Good luck x

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 17:33:13

Thanks for all the advice.

He says he understands but the whole thing is complicated by the fact that he has to stay friends with the people he should have protected me from. So I feel like he still isn't taking my side even though he tells me it's just a veneer. His reasons for having to maintain the relationship are legitimate, no matter how hard that is for me, but he is often reluctant to speak badly of them behind closed doors and that is what hurts the most. And what makes me feel like his heart isn't truly in it. He thinks that he is just trying to make the best of a bad situation/he doesn't make a habit of slagging people off. Which is true. But I think that all couples do this to a certain extent, don't they? You know, 'I can't believe he said that' or 'it was awkward having to pretend that cake was nice' etc.

I certainly do this with my friends and family. It's just harmless chat. He is often willing to speak badly of my friends even though they are broadly nice people (who make mistakes just like anyone). When I question this he says that it's ok to say these things about my friends because they are lighthearted. Whereas with his friends it's actually serious. I think this is actually his own issue in that he feels bad that he has let someone treat us the way they have and he doesn't want to have to admit and confront his own weakness.

Not that that helps me of course. Although I guess I do need to learn to understand his motives, even if I don't 'agree' with them.

nicenewdusters Thu 22-Sep-16 19:07:23

OP. I'm afraid I can't give you a happy ending. My situation involved ex's family, not friends, and other people close to us/me.

He tried to be neutral, but ended up letting me down spectacularly. It all had huge ramifications and we parted.

I spent a year trying to let it go, but it had changed everything. He never really understood that he had done anything wrong, still doesn't.

Your dh sounds a lot more self aware and conscious of your feelings than my ex. However, from your last post I would say he is minimising your hurt. Whether he's doing this to avoid recognising his own weakness, or to stay friends with people he actually really likes, what he's not doing is putting you first.

In your situation I wouldn't want to hear anything about these people. I would certainly want to feel free to speak badly about them to my dh when he knew what they had done to me. Sounds like he's a hypocrite when it comes to people he knows and those that you do.

Ultimately, who is more important, you or his friends? Why does he have to stay friends with them? Is this his reasoning? What do they provide him with that is more important than you, his wife?

Ultimately, you can decide that you can't get over it.

daisychain01 Thu 22-Sep-16 20:04:14

I agree dusters. It seems like DH wants be be the Good Guy, keeping up a front by not saying anything negative, rather than what me and DH do which is have a bit of gentle banter about things which diffuses the situation. We definitely have a few 'did you hear what he said??" Convos. Sort of "us against the world."

Not meant harmfully to anyone, it's just part of supporting each other through life...

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 20:15:04

'Us against the world' sad that's exactly what is missing.

As much as I don't like it, I do accept he has to stay friends with them. They owe him money and this is the only chance of getting it back.

'Friends he actually really likes'. This is what worries me. That he's lying to me and just hoping I will get over it and we can all pretend everything is fine again.

He is very much a bury your head in the sand type of person, go along with what other people want (so why can't he do this for me??) whereas I am absolutely not.

I'm starting to feel like this is make or break sad

MaryMargaret Thu 22-Sep-16 20:44:40

I don't undetsyand why he won't speak against them privately with you, however much he has to put on an act with them. Is he afraid slagging them off in private will make it too hard for him to fake it? If so he risks paying an awfully high price to get that money back. Now you have explained more, tbh its not so surprising you can't let it go, it must ferl kike at least a bit of him is, if nit siding with them ecactly, at least, uncomfortable with acknowledging what they did and he permitted. Perhaps he hasn't trul faved it. To use an awful phrase, perhaps he needs to man up and face his own behaviour.

How you can persuade him of this though, I'm afraid I can't help with. Maybe some kind of coules counselling, but not something i've experienced directly

MaryMargaret Thu 22-Sep-16 20:47:31

Apologies for the beyond dire phone typing

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 20:59:45

Because he thinks I go on about it too much so he doesn't want to encourage me. And you're right, he says the only way he can not get mad is to try to ignore it and minimise it. I do worry that he's lying though and he secretly likes them.

I think you're right that it is largely his problem in that he doesn't want to face it. But I don't think this should affect me (none of this was my choice, in fact it is something I would have advised against, as far as I am concerned I am the innocent party). 'Man up' is a delicate term for us but it is one I favour...

alafolie29 Thu 22-Sep-16 21:01:19

Ironically, I would stop 'going on' about it if I felt like he was on my team. If I felt like he got it. But clearly I don't.

Cocoabutton Thu 22-Sep-16 21:10:37

So, he is staying friends with people who have done you some harm, because they owe him money? The harm he could feasibly stepped in and prevented in some way?
Is the issue that you could cut the people out of your life, but you can't make him do it (and he won't do it)?

Why does he think they will pay back the money, if they have not already done so?

I am not sure if I am getting this really.

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