Hello, I am new here but a long time lurker. I am struggling to cope with a life-changing event happening to me and don't have much of a support group in real life.
I am in my mid 30s with 2 young children. my husband and I have unofficially separated and he has moved out recently. I do not want him back but I cry often knowing that I equally contributed to this break up. What really pulls on my heartstrings is that I know he is very much in emotional pain and I don't want him to feel that way because I am feeling the same pain and it is unbearable. I still love him as a person. This very thought had made it especially hard on me. Neither one of us wants to break up but we know this is the end of "us". I know that it will be just a matter of time before we pull out the D word and make it official. I am emotionally prepared to live my life without him but I am not currently emotionally prepared to live knowing that he is hurt.
I don't have anyone to share this with in real life and even if I did, I don't really want to share it.
Please help me cope. Thank you
(1. Just out of research-based interest, how come you've been watching through the windows for so long (how long?) yet never actually knocked and come inside?)
I have been lurking for about 3 months but didn't feel ready to post until now.
2. What are the reason(s) in your opinion for the fact you don't you have much of a support network at this juncture?
I don't have much support because I don't have a close knit group of friends. I am not close with my family.
3. How young? Do you work or are you a stay-at-home mum?
My kids are both under 6 years old and I will full time (we live in the U.S.)
4. Why did you separate/why don't you want him back? And in what way do you feel you were equally responsible, and through what bits specifically?
We separated because we both want different things or have different outlooks on our lives. We have grown apart essentially.
5. Did he cheat on you? Are you a 'principles first, people second' type of person, meaning, you've had to sacrifice how you feel for the sake of your moral standards?
No cheating involved from either party. In regards to principles first, people second, I'm not sure if this is true or not, maybe it is?
6. What are you scared of? Guilt over how bad he feels and (you suspect) for the fact his heartbreak will outlast your own? What else - try to name everything, no matter how 'silly' you think those concerns are?
I am not really scared, I just have a lot of guilt for the heartbreak. I can handle my own heartbreak but at least I can control that, whereas I cannot control his heartbreak. I do feel that his heartbreak will outlast mine because I have essentially checked out mentally for many months but this might have come as more of a shock to him, I don't know. That's what I think at least.
7. Obviously you NEED to share it, but why wouldn't you want to if you didn't have to? Are you used to being an island?
I mostly keep negative things to myself, I have been conditioned to do this since I was young. While it might not be healthy, I am not ready to share with anyone in real life, yet.
8. What are you trying currently in terms of coping strategies?
Currently, I try to take a bath and meditate/reflect while that helps me think, I catch myself tearing up at random times, even at work. I know I am strong but the pain in unbearable right now.
Okay, I've got 5 mins...
Before I start - liking your organisational and cooperation skills, btw!
Tell me if ever you want to speed this up up a bit?
1. Didn't feel ready to post until now because...? I need you to give me nucleus-type answers if you can, the Whys rather than the Whats.)
2. Why do you suppose you don't have a close knit group of friends nor closeness with your family? Too much on your mental plate of late, what with two little darlings-stroke-horrors and a full-time job? And could this be why you care overly for this man's welfare despite he himself takes part-responsibility for this crunch situation, to the extent of it becoming massive guilt enough to paralyse? Do you think you can make the split and then sit back and wait for your vibe to attract or develop/better-develop friendships, or do you think you'd need the friend first? Is that yet another reason for why you're trying too carefully not to provoke even mild hostility - because you'd like to convert/preserve him into/as a friend?
Or are these your logical-seeming excuses for the usual 'feeling like a failure of a mother' regarding the protecting-their-present/future-welfare aspect?
3. What do you mean by different outlooks and what are these 'different things'?
(You're right - you're definitely out of practise. Never mind, it's like riding a bike, it'll come back shortly.)
4. What is it that made you think again re 'principles first, people second'?
Did he ever do any one thing or habitual run of things during the marriage that flicked your moral nerves?
5. Who SAID you had to control his heartbreak? Heartbreak is the portal to learning from mistakes and gaining wisdom.... the 'labour pains' (you know how that goes, right?) or the 'toolshop'. Would a true friend wish that deprivation of some serious and vital survival and prosperence toolbelt tools on someone they wanted to be happy/happier as they aged? Did you not ever think of it from this angle?
Who is it you know or know of from your past that called their marriage to a halt, and what seemingly happened?
"but this might have come as more of a shock to him, I don't know."
You don't know? Have you not simply asked him about it? Do friends makes those sorts of enquiries as a standard sign of friendship? (Is it that he's not talking to you at the mo, is that the problem?)
6. Conditioned how? Emotional neglect and/or parent-child role reversal(s)? Can you give examples of this conditioning from within each life arena (home, school, etc.)?
Where did you get the idea that one has to be or gets to be READY to do any one or absolutely every thing in this life? E.g., whenever you lose your footing and trip, or burp, or need a wee or a poo - did you each time plan it?
And have you ever heard of faking it to make it?
When WERE you 'planning' to be ready?
Do you believe in any higher power?
7. What do you think about when you have these baths (spot-on self-therapeutic technique, btw...certainly one of them - think WOMB)? Are you what I call a self-counsellor?
Tearing-up at random times. Is that not allowed or healthy?
Describe the pain sensation(s)?
PS: Have you read "Bubbles In The Bath", a new bestseller by Ivor Windybottom?
(Did that work to crack a smile? If not, you could try it on your kids, bet they will.