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We're Screwing Up Our Daughter.

My husband and I should have never gotten married. He's a great person; very loving. When we first met in college, he was the exact distraction I needed from the stress and depression I'd been feeling. We were so happy in our own solitude, that I was happy with the thought of settling down with him and continuing our content lives together. When I got pregnant, it wasn't hard at all to make the choice to start our family, and move forward with everything. If I was going to have a child with anyone, it was this great person who was loving, and kind, and willing to do anything and everything for me.

I was fully aware that I wasn't madly deeply in love with him, the way that you often expect because of the unrealistic representations in movies. But I also knew that for a life together to work, we had to have a concrete relationship, and not one based on lust and irrational emotions. We had ups and downs, but seemed to work through them well with one another. We lived together for a couple of years, had a beautiful daughter, and were this happy little family on our way to a white picket fence and happy suburban life.

Several years later, and it's all gone downhill. We got married because we'd paid the deposits for our wedding. We got married, despite his lying about how much he was drinking; despite his terrible unhealthy habits. I found myself irritated by the very things I found endearing, but I wanted it to work for our daughter's sake. Plus, I was always afraid to start a war with him; I didn't want her to have to go through the negative effects of divorce. I stuck through years of a relationship, despite being unhappy. I kept thinking that if our financial struggles would be fixed, that he and I would have less stress and be happier with one another. After all, the fact that we couldn't afford to go out to restaurants or many fun weekend dates had to lend to the unhappiness I was feeling. But his lying continued, and his lack of respect toward my family got worse with every visit. I stayed only for my daughter's sake, but with every stupid argument, I kept realizing staying was even more detrimental for her. Without ever intending to, and treading carefully on how to follow up with her after she'd witness pointless arguments, I was always so careful to tell her "daddy's just upset; he loves you very much" or "Why don't you go spend some time with daddy; he probably missed you all day and he'll be happy to hang out with you". No negativity about him to her. I've been accused of physically cheating, despite spending all my time working or at home with him and our daughter. I can't pick up my phone to read an email from work or a text from my mother without snide remarks coming my way about whatever lover it is that's messaging me.

And, even though he's let go of some of his terrible habits, I've found it impossible to forgive the negative things he's said "just because he can" when he'd be drunk and angry.

I asked him for a divorce, and while I understand that it has to be painful for him, and his sadness and anger are warranted, the immaturity he displayed toward our daughter solidified my lack of love for him. I love him as her father. I love him as a friend. But I'm not in love with him in the way I'd want to feel for a husband. He's threatened to take her away from me, because I'm an unfit mother. (I work 50 hours a week, and spend every other moment of my day playing with my daughter, reading to my daughter, teaching my daughter, or, at my worst, giving her the ipad so I can take an hour to decompress). I've stayed this long because I didn't want to put her through this all, but am at the point where I can't keep going anymore.

At first all I wanted was some time to separate, and figure things out for myself, and maybe even reconnect and work on our marriage. But after all the hurtful things he's said to me, I can't go back. I'm not faultless; I'm full of my own flaws. I just need to be selfish at this point of my life; selfish for me, and selfish for my daughter.

How does one go through a divorce with someone they're so financially and personally connected with? How do you keep a child as safe as possible with one parent spewing hatred and anger and blame at the other in front of the child? And how do I know I'm not making a mistake?
LelaPela14 LelaPela14 22-25, F 7 Responses Oct 21, 2013

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That's what's going on with my parents now. I've never been more quiet because of it. But I'm almost 18, and dad doesn't see it coming. It's going to be hard, but explain it to her, she should understand when she's older.

I wonder if it is possible that he has some type of mental illess ? Obviously, this behavior is not made by a rational, logical person. Or, is it the alcohol ? Why does he feel the need to lie? Is it connected to the drinking ? He needs to get help but only when he realizes he needs it will it happen.

I believe, based on what you have said, that you should at a minimum spend some time apart and you could attempt to try some counseling, although I am not a big fan of it, it can work if you get the right type of counselor and/or resources.

Perhaps, you could stay with your parent (better than nothing ?) temporarily.

You do need to protect your daughter - that is for sure.

Your decision is never wrong when its made in regards to protection and salvaging your peace of mind. You've obviously tried just about everything to make it work, and when all has been tried, sometimes the best thing is to part ways. My Father tried to work things out with my Mother as well, he stayed with her for years until finally the stress she caused him almost caused him to die due to illness. Don't put yourself in the same situation and make yourself sick. You daughter needs you, and you're doing the right thing, in my opinion. If you ever need to talk, message me anytime dear. Much love and many blessings to you and yours

The best thing that happened to my parents was a divorce. I was 3 years old. My parents are best friends and do anything for one another. My father never remarried after that. My mother started over and gave me a sister with another man. I am 32 years old now and can say that even though I didn't grow up with both of my parents under the same roof, it always felt like it was.

How do you know if it is right? What does your heart say? You have already answered this with your words. He is angry and taking it out on your daughter because he knows it will hurt you. Just be fair. I assume she is old enough to understand what is going on. She needs to know you love her and he loves her. Perhaps she could tell him how his words hurt her...Maybe this would help. Good luck to you. Happiness is more important that financial ties. You have to do what is right for you and for her. Great luck. Grizzly bear hugssssssssssssssssssssss......

I'm sorry. You just have to follow your heart. You will know if it is the right decision.

it's normal to second guess. you can be the strong one, the positive one for your daughter. it's important to not say bad things to your daughter about your spouse. the child needs both parents in her life. it will be difficult for you and your daughter but you can start a new happy life. if you ever want or need to talk, message me

This is good advise!

Thank you, for your support. I really appreciate the input, especially since in this entire situation, I want to ensure that whatever decision I've made has the best possible solution for my daughter. And you're right, my positive behavior can hopefully outweigh the immaturity being displayed by my husband. :-/