I Am About Done With My Wife

My wife has had a depression issue for several months now. She claims that she "thought" that she wanted this life (meaning a husband who loves her and five kids under the same roof), but now she has decided that she doesn't. For the record, she has said that it's not me, it's her (cliche') and that I'm a wonderful husband and father.

She has also said that I'm (get this) too romantic, too affectionate, too loving, and too thoughtful. My response was, "Good luck finding a support group for that one!"

Since then, she has treated me like crap while I try and save my marriage. Now, she says that she's leaving and just got a job as a waitress - something she's never done before - and that she wants me to continue supporting her financially and otherwise (I just bought her $70 worth of clothes for her new job) until she has enough money to move out. At first, I thought that it would be good because at least she is still here in the house (and in our bed, although that's as far as it goes) and that maybe she would calm down a bit and see that things can get better.

All she has done is given me apathy and anger. She treats me as if I'm doing something to her when all I have done is been supportive of her figuring out how to be happy. She refuses to believe that she's depressed, yet she has delusions of grandeur in thinking that she can support herself and the kids (half of the time anyway) on a waitresses salary. When I ask her what her plans are, she doesn't know.

All of my friends who were very supportive of my efforts at trying to save the marriage are now advising me to get out. They don't like the way she treats me (I don't, either) and they feel that it's not going to get any better. I'm about there as well. I know in my heart that there's something between us, but I think that she's just very stubborn and thinks that the marriage is over and therefore she doesn't have to try or be nice to me at all.

I'm very close to ending this for her and ending my daily misery. If she wants out so badly, she'll have to figure it out on her own. I'm not going to finance her leaving me in slow motion. I have more pride than that.

I do love her very much and do not want her to go, but she's got to pull her head out of her *** and treat me with the respect that I deserve. At the very least - even if she's leaving me - I'm at least giving her respect and still caring for her and supporting her (emotionally and financially). I am an emotional wreck most of the time as I am working hard to bring in enough money to pay the bills (she sits at home all day and doesn't help me in the office - I'm self-employed) and then come home to apathy from her.

Last week I had a really hard day and joked with her that I'd pay her $100 for a hug. For the record, she didn't give me one.

*sigh*

She seems to get power from her anger, so it appears that when things calm down a bit and we are getting along, she gets nervous and gets angry again. When she does that, she seems more powerful and set in her decision. When she's not, she at least listens to my point of view about our children and our family and the goals we've set for our life together. I don't get how she can simply throw it all away because she doesn't want to face her issues.

A psychiatrist diagnosed her with "lacking important life skills". I believe that giving as well as taking is one of them. My fear is that she's running (a pattern for her) away from her problems with a "grass is greener" attitude and that it's naturally only going to follow her as she tries to pick up the pieces of her life without the love and support of her husband.

I don't want our marriage to end, but I'm about done with this. I don't like feeling this way and it really doesn't look like it's going to stop.
SpringForward2k8 SpringForward2k8
41-45, M
45 Responses Jul 31, 2007

The only hope is cutting off all support, particularly emotional (as much as the law will allow) and rapidly beginning and embracing a new life without her. Ignore her to the full extent possible and when you must interact, return the coldness she has subjected you to. It may snap her out of it, but if not, it still gets you on the right track. More bluntly, stop being a ***** and taking her ****. You can do better.

I know this is an old post but WTF!...too romantic, too affectionate, too loving, and too thoughtful...what human being doesn't wasn't want that from their partner especially a woman. I read your other post about your fiance/wife now and that is fantastic. Best wishes to both of you.

Yeah, looking back on it now with perspective, it was way more about her than it was about me. Certainly didn't feel like that then, though! LOL

Man im in the same spot. She wants a job and says that im not letting her and she fails to see that we have small children, she is more of a friend to our children making me seem like the bad guy. I left he house in hope that she would wake up. There was no kissing, so sex, no hugs and no telling meshe loved me unless I asked her. So i left. Guess what.? I thought she wouldtake the time to understand what was going on instead her and her friends decided that i was the bad guy. And now lol she doesnt want me. I told heri would pay until kids got out off school the would pay support for my kids. And that she should use this time to get a job and raise money. None of that has happend. She makes excuses on doing so and now for a time she had me onfused and begging her. Im done with that i do love her and have faithfully suported her over the years. My busines has not grown but delined because if this and she dosenot make a decision. And treats me with no respect towards my feelings and she remembers any little thing from my past to start an argument. Like justifying what shes doing. Unlike yourself my problem is that she has the kids. Man this rolleroaster is killing me sometimes i think about actually meeting someone else...eventualy if she doesent stop this train i will have to stop chasing afterit smell the coffee and forget about our marriage. She sure as hell is acting as she doesnt care.im out of the house and she has no worry. There is a saying that its not the same calling the devil than to watch him actually come!

My situation is quite a like, I come home everyday quite late from office since I just established my own chemical trading company, and I still have to clean out my wife's dogs everyday and nights and she still yells at me only for nothing but I never yell at her..she also works and generates some decent income every month..We rarely have sex (once in every 3 months).I have tried to not to get too emo at her, and still try..<br /><br />
Fyi.. I also give her large sum of my company profit every month and she still thinks I am not supporting her enough.. She is demanding for the divorce and I always say.. Hey you are the one told me to try harder, who's not trying now.. She also say things about me behind my back, I always pretend she says nothing.. What should I do for this case???

Whew. I can say from my side, I'm still toughing it out but it's like what SpringForward said, you've got to set a reasonable boundary. And if it is not met, you got to find a safe haven because it will get a lot worse. It is mental illness on my side of the story and a lot of the time it isn't safe to live together when episodes flare and last for weeks. The road to even finding accurately what is going on physically and mentally with health is a long road. You can't change the person, they might never change, but you can do what you can to make sure you and your family are safe and healthy. Who knows what someone will do or choose but you can't force it. Just hope the person gets the right sense and the right kind of help if they will not accept your help. Let me add...that if they accept your help and then they actually have to let it work out. Some people accept it then throw it away or do the opposite, downward spiral and all...

jjmarin80: Man, your post gave me the chills remembering how things used to be for me. I have a very important question to ask you: Do you have any children together?<br />
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It's probably obvious why I ask that, but I will tell you that if not for the children, I would have divorced my ex-wife three years earlier than I did. She absolutely used that to her advantage, knowing that I took family seriously and wouldn't just kick her out on her butt at the drop of a hat. She was right.<br />
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But as time wore on, she screwed up by alienating my two children from my previous marriage. That was her biggest mistake. Ironically enough, she actually has apologized to my two kids and to their mother AND to me for her behavior. Of course I have to say that since then she is back to her blame others and expect everyone else to take care of her perspective, so it's all crap anyway.<br />
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If you do not have children with your wife, do at least attempt to get her to see a psychologist - not a therapist. She may have a chemical imbalance like my ex-wife and only a psychologist can determine that. If she won't go after a period of time that you present (3 months? 6 months?), you will have to step away or you will lose yourself. I am still trying to recover from that period of my life and it still remains to be seen whether or not my business will ever recover from it.<br />
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I wish you well and by all means contact me for moral support. It's the least I could do...seriously.

This sounds very familiar to me. I'm in a freakishly similar scenario and I don't know what to do either. I can't say anything to my wife without her getting defensive and trying to make me feel guilty for expressing my feelings. She used to be energetic and a very lovely person, but lately she just lays on the couch all day while I'm working 16 hours a day(I'm self employed too) trying to support our family. If she says anything at all to me during the day it's usually something hurtful or negative. We have only been married for 4 years and I fear that I have made a terrible mistake. good luck to you, I feel your pain!

Sure, I can certainly understand where you're coming from. You didn't want to leave someone you thought you could help. But I'm glad to hear that you got yourself and your kids out of that situation, while still making an effort to communicate with your wife. I hate to see any man or woman stuck in an unhealthy relationship.<br />
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So many people don't realize that they can just walk away from abusive relationships. I don't know whether its obligation, dependence, or just inertia. None of that stopped me from getting out & I'm glad to hear that none of that stopped you.

JHopkins: Wow. Powerful stuff. I agree with you on 90% of what you said -including the question about whether or not I should have left sooner. As I look back on it now, I don't regret what I did, but I do regret that I let it go on as long as I did, for sure.<br />
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I'm with you on not suffering through loser relationships. I have PLENTY of people that I simply just gave up on because they were draining my life, not enriching it (and vice versa). This one was different for two reasons: 1) She was my wife and I don't take marriage lightly and 2) We had children together, including (at the time it started) a 2 year old daughter.<br />
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I felt that it deserved some time to see if things got better for her/us. There were brief times of clarity on her part that made it appear that there might be a light at the end of the tunnel. Well, the light clearly was a train and I jumped off the track before it got me. For that I'm thankful.<br />
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Yes, the romantic part certainly got the best of me - I'm no innocent, though. I certainly added to the stress by not falling victim to her passive aggressive tendencies. I got pissed. I said things and did things, etc., but overall I did honestly try and make it work. But we all know that it takes two who have the desire - and more importantly, the ability - to take the time and effort required to fix a problem relationship.<br />
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Unfortunately, I DID let my businesses slip while focusing on the heart matters. That is something I'm pissed at myself for, but I'm slowly climbing out and am already seeing things turn around...slowly.<br />
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Good luck to you and thanks for sharing your story!

Well, glad to hear that you're on your own & dealing with it. It sounds like you put in tremendous effort to keep your family together, and that you handled yourself well in a no-win situation.<br />
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But honestly, the whole situation seems so childish. One woman wrote about the bitterness, tears, extreme love of reconciliation. It's like kids on the playground...<br />
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The simple fact is you can put yourself into any state of mind you want. There's never any need for childish loss of self-control. You did not lose control but many people do.<br />
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My girlfriend of 16 months cheated on me 2 years ago. She got pregnant by another guy WHILE we were together. Now, I could have cried and hated myself and ruined months of my life. But instead, I decided to feel good. I left her, made good progress at work (in spite of being distracted), and had sex with an old gf to cheer myself up. In short, I handled it. <br />
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It's simple. You can be as happy as you want to. Half my family is dead and many others are suffering from lifelong chronic illness...And that's why I don't cry over dead relationships. Putting it in perspective, hurt feelings don't really matter. Anytime you feel like you're putting in too much effort or making too many compromises, you can just leave. There are literally billions of women in the world that you can enjoy emotional/physical relationships with. And it might sound cold, but you can always get another.<br />
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And it sounds like you realize that now. You're still working hard in your businesses (Im self-employed too, so I know how satisfying that is), you're raising your kids, and you're dealing with your life. You're making intelligent decisions. <br />
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But realistically, don't you think you should have probably left sooner? In other words, why did you put in so much effort when the end seemed inevitable? If someone treats you badly, you can just cast them off. You can do it with friends, family, and lovers...I don't understand why people put themselves through that. Oh well, it's probably just because you're a romantic guy who enjoys intimacy. Not that that's a problem. You definitely won't have any trouble meeting a women to enjoy that with you.<br />
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Best of luck in the future.

Update:<br />
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First, I'd like to respond to starflight12. I don't think that she felt smothered. It wasn't like that. I do believe that she felt underwater. She has been depressed for years (her mother told me that she wasn't happy even in high school), but that wasn't there the first couple of years of our relationship.<br />
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She lacks self-esteem and self-worth and that made her feel inferior or not able to "match" my support and affection.<br />
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That said, I had to finally give up. I had held on for three years and truly wanted everything to work out, but there's only so much I can do on my own without her wanting to get help and making some sort of effort. The final straw was the fact that two of my children (from my first marriage) were not living with us because my wife couldn't handle it. They hadn't been here for a year and a half and that's just not acceptable. I couldn't do it anymore.<br />
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I finalized the divorce (I had originally filed in June of 2008) in September and had her move out around that same time. It has been very rough because she has gone from hating me to telling me she loves me and wants me back to hating me again and back to how much I am perfect for her and she misses me. I am seeing someone now and I think that it's finally sunk in for her that I'm not coming back. She raged quite a bit - even walked out of a mediation appointment at the courthouse - but I think she's doing a bit better as of this writing.<br />
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The entire thing is bittersweet. I did love her and wanted her to be happy, but I really believe that it wasn't going to happen until she was out of options and had to take care of herself. I was enabling her to do nothing with her life or our marriage and it had to change - for everyone's sake.<br />
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Anyway, I'm feeling a lot better not being on that emotional roller coaster. A lot less up and down. So of course that's a great thing. I don't like not having my kids here every day - takes a lot of getting used to - but it will work out in the long run for everyone.<br />
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Thank you for all of the great comments, suggestions and support since I first wrote this back in 2007. I can barely recognize that it's been that long.

I want to echo Radiant's comment that there is something very strange about a woman complaining that a man is being too loving. This is just a stab in the dark but could it be that she feels sort of smothered by your affection; that it is very hard for her to push back against a man who seemingly does everything right. There may not seem to be any space for her to hold on to a separate self and articulate what it is that bothers her. <br />
Just sayin'

sufirehorse66: I'm so sorry to hear that you are in that position. I agree, it does break your heart to think of the example it's setting for our kids. I've tried that angle with my wife and all I get in return is that she will leave so that they don't see her in a bad relationship, but then she does nothing.<br />
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A friend pointed out to me today (funny enough) that I'm not an ******* and I'm not a pushover. That's my curse, is what he was saying. I don't let her walk all over me, but I won't kick her out because I know she needs help and won't get it on her own.<br />
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Obviously I can't stay in this situation forever. I need to somehow force the issue, but can't seem to find a way to do that without hurting her.<br />
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I hope that your situation gets better. I really do.<br />
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desperatemeasuresx2: Thank you for the hug offer - that alone does wonders. ;-)

If you haven't done so already get the heck out or more precisely tell her to leave. Do not leave her with the kids. You are feeling the terrible burden of a negative relationship but because you are always walking on eggshells trying to contain the situation or trying in vain to improve it, you cannot see the full impact on your kids. Please don’t misunderstand me, I am sure you are worried about the effect it is having on the kids and you struggle with whether it’s better for them if you split or stay together. <br />
I have had very much the same battle with a husband that refuses to get help while the house got increasingly toxic. I know he has depression issues and I believe passive aggressive behavior but he will not seek help; he mocks it as taking a happy bill and refuses to go any further. I knew we were in trouble at least eight years ago but I struggled with what was best for the kids and our finances are quite limited. It was hard seeing what he had become and what I became as a result. Generally an optimist, I found myself taking the negative view far too often and not being nearly as good of a listener as I used to be. I wanted him to leave but felt selfish as I wondered if I had put my needs ahead of my kids. A little over a year ago when he hit a new low on his nasty behavior I realized that the behavior problems I was seeing with my teenage sons were behavior patterns they had picked up from him – he’s very disrespectful, dismissive and responds to simple inquiries such as “Are you alright?” with blatant hostility. As I started to connect things my heart broke into a million pieces because my kids have been emotionally injured and I could have put a stop to it long ago. We are in the process of divorcing and although it’s taken longer than I had hoped I am looking forward to being free from him and changing the dynamics in my life and most importantly the life of my kids. I cannot stress enough how much this is affecting your kids. You deserve to be loved and appreciated and they need to see a positive example of a relationship or they are very likely to mirror what they know. That is what breaks my heart the most as I worry that it might be too late for my boys to learn how a healthy relationship works without a significant amount of heartache and work to overcome what they’ve been taught. You do not want to be in this position!

Hi something1,<br />
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I don't want to sound like a know-it-all, but I have tried to give her small tasks that he can complete with the intention of doing just what you suggested (I've read a lot of books on this). The problem is that she's stubborn for her own good. She quickly realizes what I'm doing and says that she feels controlled and wants to do things on her own. I back off and she does nothing. Vicious cycle. I'm done with it. Something has to give and it can't be my sanity or well being.<br />
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I had a three hour conversation (talk about wearing you down) this morning about how we can never work on things if she has such negativity toward me, herself and life in general. I spew out a bunch of positive things (sorry for the sarcasm, but...) about her that I truly do love and she comes back with something negative. I can't win. I'm at a point where there is nothing I can do or say that will change her mindset. She has to do it for herself and she isn't. I have to leave or I will lose myself.<br />
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You hit the nail on the head about her as far as her not wanting help because she'll have to admit there's something wrong. For a few years now, she's hidden behind her statement that she's not depressed, she's depressed because of her situation.<br />
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I basically gave her an ultimatum today. Either she stays and I will support her (financially and emotionally) getting better (meaning DOING something) or I'm going to leave. She probably doesn't think that I'm serious, but I am more serious than I've ever been in my life.<br />
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This is draining me. Now I have to figure out how to muster the energy to tackle my giant list of things I have to get done today for my business. Ugh.<br />
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Thank you for your support. It really does help.<br />
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Rick...

I came across your story while looking for stories about people who have spouses with depression – I started replying to your comment and then realized it might need to be its own topic so i added it – see here <a href="http://www.experienceproject.com/uw.php?e=450103" target="ep_blank">http://www.experienceproject.com/uw.php?e...</a> ... all I can say is, you’re better off having had her leave you now, not when she’s 69 and had made your whole life miserable. On the other hand, she clearly suffers from low self esteem- her attempt at getting a job was a probably her way to try to raise her self esteem. If anythign, try to find somethign for her to do that she can achieve with success, that's not too "easy" but that she won't fail at, and give her harder and harder things to do ... for example, sign her up for a simple scrapbooking class, then move on to a first aid course, etc. Find soemthgin she's already good at, ex. cooking, and encourage her in that ... <br />
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But I feel for you - you sound like a decent guy who's tried everything, and in reality, you deserve to be with someone who returns your love and stands with you side by side. For a "postivie" person to be with such a negative person, it can wear you down - it draws you into her life, and not the other way around. The fact she refuses help means she is afraid of admitting there is soemthgin wrong with her, since that would mean he self esteem will go even lower. So again, if you want to give it one last ditch attempt, I'd say give her something to achieve on her own that she can feel a bit proud of, but make sure not to tell her that's what's going on ... anyhow, just my 2 cents worth ...

haydenrules: Yes, she is in total denial. When I bring up depression, she tells me that it's situational. She says that she's depressed because of the world she lives in with me. Ugh.<br />
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It's not fun. I can handle it for a few weeks and then I have had enough and get outwardly frustrated. I'm turning 40 in April and I just don't like the fact that I live with a woman who doesn't love me and shows me zero affection (not a hug, not a peck on the cheek, nothing) and whom I just might be stuck with for a long time (we have a 4 year old and four older kids).<br />
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I seriously wish that I had the cash to get my own place for a while. I need time to be away from this, but that's just not going to happen anytime soon.

You are right about everything. Different people react differently to different antidepressants. I had to take several myself before I found one that helped me. I'm sorry that you are going through this. It sounds like maybe she is in denial about her depression and is placing the blame on other things like the marriage and such.

haydenrules: Thanks for your insight. She refuses any and all help from absolutely ANYONE. She is especially sensitive when it comes to medication. She tried it two years ago and had a bad reaction to the one she was put on, so in her mind, all medication is bad and she claims that she "tried it and it didn't work". I tried to explain that the human brain chemistry is very complex and everyone has their own unique chemical makeup and that it may take several tries with the right doctor to get it right, but she flat out refuses to even consider it.<br />
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She refuses to see a therapist or psychologist. She refuses to read any books. I suggested that I read WITH her and she got upset and accused me of being condescending.<br />
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I haven't posted on here for a while. After my second VERY rocky summer in a row with her, my wife quietly decided to stay and work on things. But because of her lack of confidence in herself and certainly the marriage, she keeps the proverbial one-foot-out-the-door mentality. She doesn't wear a ring (so I don't, either), doesn't tell me that she feels ANYTHING for me, showers and dresses in the spare bathroom (but we sleep in the same bed...figure that one out), and more.<br />
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So I'm in a very difficult holding pattern. I don't have the money to move her out and she has nowhere (literally) to go and no money (no job, either). I'm just focusing on income so that I can afford to move her out on her own if she doesn't do something about her issues.<br />
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We'll see...

I think if your wife was on medication (if she isn't already) it would make a difference. I have suffered from depression for almost my entire life. When you are depressed, you do not care about anything. You sometimes feel confused and lost in life. But, you are right that you deserve to be treated with respect! It sounds like you are a really good guy to her and your efforts go unappreciated. In that aspect, I can relate. I wish you luck and hope it all works out.

I think if your wife was on medication (if she isn't already) it would make a difference. I have suffered from depression for almost my entire life. When you are depressed, you do not care about anything. You sometimes feel confused and lost in life. But, you are right that you deserve to be treated with respect! It sounds like you are a really good guy to her and your efforts go unappreciated. In that aspect, I can relate. I wish you luck and hope it all works out.

Update:<br />
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Well, I've made peace with the fact that we're done. I have decided that I cannot be with this woman the way she is. I still love her (probably always will) and am still attracted to her and would love to have a healthy marriage with her, but I don't think that's possible.<br />
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She is still way too immature and overfocused on everything negative in life. She hates my two children from my previous marriage (not because of them but because they are step kids). She says that she got in over her head and wants out because she can't handle the pressure of being married with five children. Great. She can step out of it without any repercussions, but she leaves me with all of the responsibility that she just walked away from. Ugh.<br />
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Anyway, she still has no place to live and no job and no income, etc. She's living in a fantasy world and it's all going to come crashing down on her. The thing is that she always expects me to be there for her (because I have) and I'm just trying to get to a place where I don't care anymore. It's a protection thing.<br />
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It stinks, but I have to move on.

Thanks Tekkamaki.<br />
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Well, I met with her today for 30 minutes just to talk. She seems a bit more resigned and less confident. After less than two weeks out of the house, she said (quote), "Reality is setting in." She's speaking of financial realities and others.<br />
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She also told me that she doesn't think that she can be a stepmom to my two kids. Take my word for it, my two kids are really good. She could have it so much worse. What she can't handle is that they have a mom who has slept with her husband. It's an immature thing that she has to get past in order for anything to ever work again with us.<br />
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I basically told her that I'm not predicting anything as far as whether or not we'll ever work out again. I told her that I realize that she's only a week and a half away from this and that she still needs more time. I told her that if it's 3 weeks or 3 months that I'd be here if she is willing to approach things differently. I also told her that it's going to be a tough road either way, but that it could be so worth it if we both put forth the effort in a healthy way.<br />
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Time will tell. Stay tuned.

*big hug*

UPDATE:<br />
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Whelp, it looks like it's over. A little over a week ago, she admitted that (at least in her current state of mind) she no longer loves me and refuses to see a counselor to make sure that it's over. She just kept repeating, "Let me go, just let me go".<br />
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So I am. I filed for divorce two days later after I found out that she had moved in (she says in a spare room) with a single father from our daughter's softball team. She has issues, that's for certain, but as many of you have said, I can't force her to seek help or get a clearer head.<br />
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I saw our therapist and she said that my wife is very immature (something I already knew) and is basically fighting being an adult with adult responsibilities. The therapist recommended that I run for the hills and count my blessings that it's happening now and not ten years from now. I don't think that I could've lasted ten more days, so that wouldn't have happened.<br />
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So, I've got all five kids and have had to take on what little responsibilities she was handling (albeit sporadically), on top of two businesses that I own and operate. It's not been fun, but the kids are surprisingly (or maybe not so surprisingly) thriving since the "dark cloud" over our house has lifted.<br />
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We did a thorough cleaning of the house (she wasn't doing it and wouldn't let me do it because that would put pressure on her) and they have all pitched in to keep it clean (over a week now) - even the 3 year old.<br />
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I'll post more later. Thanks for the encouragement and support from everyone.

OMG! I know what you are talking about!! He used to be so stubborn that I almost wanted to do a lobotomy on him! He was so stubborn (this was before we had the baby) he'd dispute getting help or even getting out of the house for days on end. No sleep, just marathon refusals and arguments. It was horrible because I felt like the person I fell in love with was gone forever. Years this went on...years...I couldn't take it and had to leave. <br />
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Did I tell you he was extremely stubborn with most of the help he got. He'd literally debate therapists and it was like a mental challenge to see if he could stump them. He'd walk out, sit in a parking lot. I mean I wasn't a saint either because I'd be screaming at the top of my lungs at him. Years of it made me numb, angry, disgruntled. I became different too.<br />
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I wish I had my old stories on here. We used to duke it out like barbarians. It was embarrassing!<br />
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I tell you. Some of the classic fights we had were like the ultimate fighting championship. Wow! (Not physically but we knew so much about each other that we knew exactly what to say so it hurt real bad, ouch!) I don't know if that makes you feel better. But lol, least we made it on the other side...ha ha.<br />
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I'm still rooting for you guys though. : )

Tekkamaki,<br />
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Thank you for your post. That's awesome to hear your story. Congrats on seeing it through. It IS good to see that others have done it and things worked out for the better.<br />
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Unfortunately, my wife is extremely stubborn. I've shown her articles and web pages and more about similar success stories, but she just blanks out. She is negative in her head. She NEVER discusses hope. It's always about how bad things are or how she's unhappy with her life or how she missed out on things in her life because of decisions she's made.<br />
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My thoughts are that she's an adult with a husband, two businesses (that she has ZERO involvement with), children, etc. and that she needs to own up to the decisions she's made and step up to the plate once and for all. Like with most of us, she needs to make new decisions that will make her happier (hobbies, job, business, friends, etc.) without blowing up the life that she's built.<br />
<br />
She somehow believes that if she just keeps pretending that it'll all magically fall into place. I wish she had my perspective on this because I'm not happy and it's only getting worse.<br />
<br />
Rick...

Well, my husband and I had a similar situation. A little more complex because it was coupled with many tragic events, natural disasters, etc. He was left pretty numb and isolated. We separated for almost most of our marriage. We tried all kinds of therapy, counseling, meds and no meds...<br />
<br />
It really looked like it was the end for us. Our lives were split, we barely knew each other anymore, and we were going through the divorce paperwork with one small child between us and a handful of pets we both loved.<br />
<br />
Somehow we decided to reconcile. It's not all rosy, it's tough. It had to be the most difficult and grueling couple of months in my life. A lot of tears, forgiveness, anger, bitterness, intense emotions, and all the basic extremes of reconciliation. <br />
<br />
We're now living together and basically thriving. A lot of things are changing with the both of us and we're doing it together. I mean, we have such a rough and tumble marriage at the beginning. It was crazy. Now we're on the other side breathing, relaxing, and actually feeling genuinely happy.<br />
<br />
Maybe telling your wife that this can happen and things can get better...that if both of you are willing to meet halfway...(well, in my case, we had to get to the root of why he was depressed and help him change that. And he had to tell me what he was comfortable with and how I could help encourage him, not criticize him. We all had to agree on changes too.)<br />
<br />
I hope you guys make it. Really I do.

As far as counseling, we have not done any more since last summer. She feels that she can do it on her own (classic denial and avoidance, in my opinion). She's made a couple of breakthroughs recently (possibly because she was hearing from me that I was on my way out if it didn't get better). She's identified some traits in her that she doesn't like and some things that she's been holding onto that she needs to let go of (things that have nothing to do with me). So, I'm cautiously hopeful.<br />
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I'll update more later.<br />
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Thanks for the comments!

I just came across this story and was interested in the update.<br />
Have you done any counselling together?<br />
Good luck anyway.

Hey RioMan123, Sorry to hear that story. Yes, it's a great thing that no children were involved in your case. I haven't been on this board for a while, but re-reading my original posting and everyone's comments is very interesting a year later.<br />
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We are still married and she's retreated on her plans to leave (she never really had the means to do so - monetarily or mentally). I've stuck by her 1) because I do love her and wish that she's drop the negative contact lenses she wears, and 2) because we do have 5 children.<br />
<br />
I'm nearing the end, though. Can't get her to step up and compromise on our relationship. She has a list a mile long of things that I have to do in order for her to "be there" with me, but when I ask one or two things of her, she backs out and shuts down. *sigh*<br />
<br />
I'm raw at this point and clearly unhappy (the kids can see it). Something's gotta give here.

My wife left me eight years ago, and I can still become very angry when I remember the crap she put me through. Nothing was her fault, her responsibility. I could have been SuperMan with a million dollars to spare, and it wouldn't have mattered. Moreover, it is very clear to me now that she only married me to stay in the country (she was Canadian). <br />
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I sometimes have this fear that she will somehow re-emerge in my life. That she will somehow arrive from the shadows just to re-affirm her power and make me a mess all over again.<br />
<br />
Thank God there were no children.

soditzy:<br />
<br />
Thanks for your comments. You may be right here. It's not the first time I've heard that hypothesis.<br />
<br />
She's currently trying to stay in the marriage, so we'll see how that goes. I know that it can't go back to the way things have been with us, so I'm hoping that she'll talk with someone about her feelings and non-feelings. It's important to me that we have a good marriage and that we're both as healthy as we can be. Our kids look to us as examples and I don't want them to get the wrong idea from us if at all possible.

Just wondering...depression and low self esteem go hand in hand with zero libido, maybe any romantic gestures on your part are seen by your wife as sexual advances, which is why she feels unworthy of them as she is unable to respond to you in the way she feels she ought to.<br />
Only saying as i have no sex drive whatsoever, i have no idea where its gone! but gone it has. <br />
For this reason i have chosen to remain alone. I wouldnt say im depressed, i might be, i dont know, my doctor seems too try and bung me on anti d's every time i go to him.<br />
Unless you have experience the lack of desire for yourself you cannot know how it feels to be bound to having sex, even if you're deeply in love with your partner.<br />
I dont mean that you're making her feel that way, just that maybe thats how your wife feels.<br />
Good luck to you, hope things work out x

EP is a great place to get sympathy. And that's a good thing.<br />
<br />
But it's also always good to look at your own fifty percent in any relationship problem. Sure she's the identified patient. But looking at why you made the choices you did that contributed to landing you in this unhappy situation will be the single most positive step you can take to guarantee you don't run into this issue again. *And* it will be the only way you'll be able to see your way clear to resolving this current problem honorably.<br />
<br />
harda@@ Humdinger, who's been around the block a few times too many to think it's ever as simple as 'we split up because I'm rational and s/he's crazy'

Honesty mayb she wants to feel independant its wierd in a way I guess for me to say that because she could be married to u still .. if she does leave then make sure u end up with the kid there is no way I would let her have the kid she might just end up not wanting to be around the baby ... I say try alil more pray to god mayb she'll realize how much she truly does need u ... But about the being too loving and affectionate part whoa I couldn't imagin not having my fiance treat me with love and affectionate ... Goodluck and don't worry I'm sure that ull find someone that will apperciate u better .. Hope everything works out for u

Never heard a woman complain about a man being to loving and caring and all that stuff. <br />
<br />
Is she a little nutty?<br />
<br />
Maybe she never found her true self before getting married. Maybe she has Borderline Personality Disorder. <br />
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You could let her go find herself. Tell her that you love her and think that you always will love her, but you can't allow the turmoil and abuse that she brings to you. <br />
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Tell her to go and become her true self, and that once she thinks that is done, she can talk with you about it. <br />
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If her true self still likes you and your ways, and the feeling is mutural, maybe the two of you can try again. <br />
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Explain that for the children's sake you still need to see eachother to take care of them. <br />
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The CHILDREN are to be the main focus from now on. <br />
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Write to Dr. Laura or call in with this...she can be very straight foreward and set people the right direction <br />
<br />
Radiant

I'm no expert in this field, but I do know one thing you can't force someone to get help. Until someone recognizes that they have a problem and are willing to work on it, your efforts to get her treatment will be in vain. Accepting that you have a problem is the first step. If you force her to get help, she will only resent you more and continue in denial. She has to want to change.<br />
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One thing that you have to be worried about is the children. Is she resentful and mean to the kids? I truly do care about you and how you are doing in this situation, but the kids can sometimes get swept under the rug accidentally.

Right on Maple!

Wow. That does sound very much like my situation. Interestingly enough, since I posted that, she's come forward. She went back to work for a while and quit after a month because I think she got a dose of the real world. She didn't like that she didn't get to see the kids as much and how hard it was to earn a buck on her own.<br />
<br />
So, she has declared that she is working on the marriage, which is a good thing, but I just don't believe that she wants it deep down. Too much has been said these past few months. I think that she is now trying to (her words) "suck it up" and make the best of the decisions she's made in her life.<br />
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I can't tell you how much I do not want a marriage like that. I'm very, very tired of having to practically beg my wife for affection and respect. She has gotten better as far as thinking of me, but there's an intimacy void that I'm just not sure can be overcome with her thought process.<br />
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We are currently in a "no physical contact" state - her idea, obviously. She believes that if we don't have physical contact (holding hands, hugging, kissing, cuddling, etc. - not just sex) that she'll feel less "pressure" and will eventually come forward to me. It's been almost a month. I just don't believe that it'll change things long-term.<br />
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I am a very affectionate person and I have a large libido. She does not. I've made many sacrifices and compromises to accommodate this gap between us and now it's such a vacuum that I no longer want to sleep in the same bed with her. I can't handle having to ask permission from my own wife to put my arm around her after a long day or recently after a great date night we had.<br />
<br />
*sigh*

I know a person who was in a similar situation. He was married to a woman for five years and the entire time she claimed that he 'wasn't right for her' that she could do just as well on her own, and that she wanted a better more exciting life. Though he was very kind and loving with her, patient with all her personality quirks, she still called him a mistake...said he was too much of a nice guy and it upset her. They were also weighed down with young children. It got to the point that they were living in the same house as self declared 'divorced' and he supported her just like you're supporting your wife even though his funding didn't especially support it. All I can say is that they seperated...and it was hard at first but he still talks about how he wish he'd done it sooner because she was just an anchor to his life, as bad as he feels about it. He still hasn't cut her out completely and he still loves her, but their lives are going in completely different directions. <br />
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I don't mean to sway your decision in either way, and I hope that whatever you choose to do you can be happy again! At least a little.

It seems to me that your attempts at communicating by reason are not working very well, and that she is primarily driven by her feelings.<br />
<br />
From her perspective then it sounds like her feeling-thoughts are this:<br />
a) *You* make her feel a certain way that she doesn't like<br />
b) Being married *to* you makes her feel a certain way that she doesn't like<br />
c) Leaving you will make her feel a certain way<br />
d) You are failing to make her feel a certain way<br />
e) Your relationship to her is failing to make her feel a certain way<br />
f) A lot of this would seem to be bound up in her perception of her identity<br />
<br />
I know this seems like I'm repeating everything, but if there's any headway to be gained, I think it would probably be through an understanding of her emotional state and her emotional perception of the situation. Once that is in place, using "emotional reasoning" to communicate her would be the next step. By that, I mean inducing in her the emotions she desires, and thus making her feel how she wants to feel. This is not emotional manipulation, it is a form of demonstrative reasoning (ie here it is, the feeling you were looking for, now what do you think?).<br />
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It seems very unlikely that she will address the issues that she has whilst she does not feel right.<br />
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If she thinks you are being too romantic, too affectionate and too thoughtful, she may be seeking the feelings that a more traditional male might provide. I have a link to a resource that provides a bit of a how-to-manual on how to add that sort of emotional connection via traditional masculinity. If you're interested, feel free to message me. <br />
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On the other hand, you might already *be* done with your marriage.<br />
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Either way, good luck :)

prettyinpink:<br />
<br />
Unfortunately, finances doesn't allow another psychologist at this time. It cost me $450 for this one. They don't take any insurance.<br />
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She's tried meds, but she is in denial about being depressed, so she's off of all medication. It's not pretty. At least before, she was civil.<br />
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EPErica:<br />
<br />
She has BIG self-esteem issues. It's very well known and she acknowledges it. The thing is that it's easier to just run away from it than face it. She has other issues (such as intimacy) that have contributed, but she's unwilling to deal with them for herself and ultimately for our marriage and family.<br />
<br />
Deb20132:<br />
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Nope. No other man. She's a stay at home mom and I work a mile away. I'm home in and out all day long. She doesn't go anywhere. We have a 2 1/2 year old, so she's limited in that capacity. We're in contact constantly throughout the day.<br />
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She is very unsure of herself. She's tired of the way she feels, so she thinks that if she leaves the marriage that things will be simpler somehow. She's so very wrong, but I can't talk her out of it.

Good luck. I hope you can find a way to be happy, with or without your wife. Her saying that you are too loving makes it sound like she has definite self esteem issues (I don't know how I would feel if a psychiatrist said I lacked important life skills). I hope that she can get the help she needs. Best of luck to you.

first, i am sorry you're going thru this, you sound like a decent guy. the real shocker to me is a phsychiatrist saying she's "lacking important life skills". wow! i've never heard that diagnoses yet....perhaps another phsychiatrist?? i've been seeing one on and off for years. i have an actual diagnosis. if it truly is depression, he or she should be doing something about it. perhaps meds?? good luck to you. it's not easy trying to figure out what to do with what i'm sure has been many years of your life..