When is enough... enough?
I've been married to him for 20 years and this is our 3rd marriage for both of us. The marriage has had its ups and downs. There has been indiscretions on his part. Flirtation texts to emails. Never really took accountability for it until recently where he will admit it very "under the collar" so to speak. Says he's committed and doesn't know what he would do without me, but still has "blunders". A couple of camping excursions we've taken by ourselves. I've noticed that any hint of a "look" by a woman to him and or a hint of "nicety" by a woman camper next to us, seems to give him curiosity or any eager fascination. I hate using those words, but I can't find the correct way to put it. He gets off (won't admit it), but I've had twenty years of this and I know him. You say....what have you done and or not done to make things work? Here's the thing...after his indiscretions, we've lost alot. His sex doesn't work for me. I've tried making an effort, but something always comes up and my efforts stop. We can talk about this and he says he will change...but I am at a point where I am done. I am approaching 61 and I don't feel like starting over, but can't move (for financial reasons), so I've given up to improving what I've not been able to change and going to quit doing the things that have yet to work. He's a good looking guy, works hard, but isn't very good at being a husband or a committed husband. My heart hurts because I am at this point and I have no idea what the future holds for me, but have faith in God that he knows all, sees all and will keep safe. So I've decided today to sign up with "peoplesproblems" and see what others are going through and maybe learn something and to take one day at a time!!!
When's his birthday? Get him one of those blow up dolls and glue a toy cell phone to its plastic hand. Be sure to stencil the number to dial a prayer on the toy phone.
Oh... Then serve him with papers for the divorce.
What's the saying... I'd rather be lonely and happy than married and depressed.
This is your 3rd marriage which has lasted for 20 yrs, so you have had to "start over" and you survived. He's had "indiscretions" one would be a deal breaker for most women, followed by flirtations texts-emails. He says "he doesn't know what he would do without" how many times have you heard that? Indiscretions/Blunders should have consequences,he's had none, so his "demeaning, dis-respectful, getting off" behavior continues.
"You've given up trying to improving what you've not been able to change". Thank God! Staying in this relationship because of "finances", is an excuse. At 61 it's time to live you life putting your needs and wants first. The future holds whatever you want it to hold.
I'm a believer that "we deserve what we accept" We keep hoping for change that doesn't happen, not realizing that it's US who must change. If you truly want a healthier, happier life then pick "you" over financial issues.
You are hurting. You have faith in God... well what does God say about this? While it is true that we all have the potential to change dramatically with God's help there is a requirement on our part... there is always an action of some kind... stretch forth your hand... ask and you shall receive... step out of the boat to walk on the water... do you see? What is right for you and your situation --- you will know. You have the ability to hear from God yourself.
You said "I am approaching 61 and I don't feel like starting over"... (there are financial pressures) and you have "given up" but I hear you are emotionally exhausted. When you are that drawn out it is hard to think clearly. Is there a friend you could take a weekend and visit... perhaps someone you could just hang out on the sofa or in the spare room for a weekend of solitude? It would give you a short reboot, not solve the issues.
Sometimes it is helpful to make a short list of what you want right now to help yourself out of this endless drama. How about one night away from him out with friends, or a night with a close relative with whom you have a good relationship, maybe join a gardening club, take a painting class... where ever your interests lie... start doing something for you. Our lives are a series of coming together-coming apart-coming together... How we traverse those tough times teach us how to get through the next tough time... learn positive coping techniques. Do you journal? How about an exercise class in your city? It is fun as well as interesting to take a class, learn a new skill, or take up a new hobby. You may find that "starting over" is the wrong term. You have learned too much to "start over from scratch" you will simply be "adding to" what you already bring to the table whether you stay in the relationship or move on.
Since you have stayed for twenty years it sounds as if you are forever hopeful with this person. We know that we cannot change another person, it is difficult to change ourselves yet that is the only thing we have any control over... ourselves. Every second in every minute in every hour of every day... we make choices. Even choosing to do nothing is a choice. We are accountable for every choice, it is good to hold each other accountable it is in this way we are able to grow. Focus on who you want to be, what you want your life to be, and where you want your life to go in the future... work on that and the rest will become clearer,
Agree (and gaffaw) in principle with KNOT, including re the "rather be a-lone than un-ha-ppy" Whitney lyric; agree with SKINNY that he never has to deal with actual consequences for his stupid actions (aside from nag-nag-nag/plea-plea-plea) and would add that if he HAD then you'd not feel you had no other choice at this late point than between two drastics; agree with LIVENOW that you sound too emotionally exhausted to deal with it (hence are asking other people for answers) and need a holiday from him (although, not just the one, brief weekend)...
But before you throw baby out with the bathwater - have you never heard of marital counselling? Have you never heard of statements along the lines of, 'It's obvious we need counselling to get to the bottom of why you need to seek outside attention whilst I'm there, forced to witness it and why it disturbs me so. Therefore, if you refuse to take this helpful route to marital rescue then I will have to take that refusal to mean you either don't care to save our relationship or LIKE upsetting me in this way and wish not to lose that tool', followed by calling an official 6-month separation or filing for divorce?
What I gather LIVENOW is trying to tell you is that if you start doing things to make yourself feel better, calmer, more confident, stronger and less emotionally at his mercy and less focussed on the ins-and-outs of what and why he's doing as opposed to what you should (the bigger picture) then that'll fast-track you to a place where you finally have the wherewithal *TO* deal effectively for once with this side of your husband, this very stubborn "treat her mean to make her keen" streak. In which case, I agree. But I say, do BOTH - counselling AND the self-feeding. After 20 years of doing nothing but TALKING (to deaf or resistant ears), I think you owe yourself that two-pincer approach. After all, if you suddenly realise you're late for a bus to point of in danger of missing it, you don't remain walking at the same pace, do you. You give it everything you've got by starting to sprint. So that's what's needed here as well.
But first - the battery re-charger of a holiday/distance thus a fresh, more panoramic perspective.