PA Man and Counseling?!?!?

PA Man is out of town again…he left Monday, will be back later this evening.
We actually had a good weekend, we were able to talk some…and PA Man told me he will go to counseling!
Really?? Yippee!! YAY!! Woohoo!! HaPpY DaNcE!!

Oh yeah!! Lets do this!! Counseling!!

SCREECH!!!!! That sound is the brakes being applied to all that “happiness” because I no longer believe his empty promises…Yep, I’m now a passive aggressive cynic!!

Will PA Man actually go to counseling? Your guess is a good as mine…Will counseling help him…again, your guess is as good as mine.

I do wonder if the “No Sex” boundary I have set up is starting to sink in…that yes, I’m standing firm and not backing down…which I must confess, I have done repeatedly, especially when PA Man starts “playing nice” and “opening up” and sharing small parts of himself…I folded like a house of cards!
But not anymore! I am standing my ground…and maybe PA Man is starting to see the change in me?? I can only hope and pray!

In her book, The Emotionally Destructive Marriage, Leslie Vernick says that a woman has to find her CORE strength…and I’m working on that everyday!

It’s up to PA Man to determine how this marriage will be….either we stay broken, or he works on himself, so that we can heal and be happy together!

I do believe that “with God, ALL things are possible!” PA Man doesn’t HAVE to stay this way, God can change a hurting heart…but PA Man has to want it…and now that he’s told me he’ll go to counseling…I’ll sit back and watch and wait…time will tell if it’s just more broken promises and empty words….unfortunately the cynic in me thinks I already know the answer.

An Explanation

I thought I’d give a explanation for my recent decision to make plans to separate from PA Man.
I know what I’m about to share might seem a bit silly…especially if you’ve never dealt with a passive aggressive OR infidelity…But please try to understand….I’m coming at this as a wife who has been through the hurt, pain and humiliation of betrayal…of infidelity, of a knife being stabbed into my back over and over and over again…by the one who should have loved me and protected me.
I have a deep, deep desire to feel SAFE!! To know that I’m loved with such a deep, abiding, FAITHFUL love…and I now realize that PA Man is not capable of showing me that, and he never will be, and even sadder, he doesn’t even care to try.

So here’s the story…

PA Man came home late yesterday afternoon….and promptly fell asleep by 7:50pm…sound asleep, after being gone all week!
So why would this bother me??
Well, last Monday he traveled with a co-worker to PA…he left our house @5:30am, to get to the airport by 6….
When he arrived in PA, they had lunch then went to the business plant to begin work, since they were on a tight schedule.

He sent me a text that he was heading to his hotel at 6:30 and called me after he got there, and had a shower…he then decided to lay down for a bit, then left the hotel at 8:30 for dinner with his co-worker…they stayed out until after 10:30…this after such an early morning and traveling for several hours…and when he got back to his room, he was “exhausted” and had to go to bed! We talked for maybe 9 mins!
And yet, when he gets home…he’s fast asleep before 8pm!!
Dinner out with a coworker…he can stay up later…home with the wife…it’s early to bed…Oh, ok!!!

Yes, I know…it’s a picky thing to get upset about….but he did the same thing on Tuesday night!
Another 2 hr dinner, and then he gets back to his room…he’s had a long day, he’s exhausted, etc..No time for the wife..again.

Not the attitude of a loving man, who misses his wife and family…which is what he ALWAYS tells me when he’s gone…and maybe that’s what got under my skin a bit…he’s always soooo sweet on the phone while he’s on a trip…telling me how much he misses me, misses our family, etc…

And when I mentioned it to him, that I felt like he didn’t have time for me..for us..he got upset with me, started making all kinds of excuses!

Writing it down it all seems so petty and silly…it’s one of those, “You had to be there” type of situations I guess..
His attitude was so selfish, so arrogant…so, um, so DEFENSIVE….I told him I didn’t want him to call me the next day…to use the time to think about what he REALLY wants…does he want a family?? A wife??

So we didn’t talk until Thursday…and he said, when I asked him about what do YOU want, do you want to seperate?? He said “NO!” And that he will talk to me about it when he gets home!
I then asked why can’t we talk about it now?
His response…”I want to do it when I get home, ok, why does it have to be over the phone??”
So I didn’t argue…I just left it alone…because you and I BOTH know….there will NEVER be a discussion!! He will NOT talk about any of this!! He will bury it, act like it never happened…

Anyway, one would think….after having a week like we had, BTW, there was more that happened, but just trying to keep it pithy here.
The long silences, me asking if he wants to seperate…you would THINK that would be on his mind….but nope…sleep is more important…and it’s now 11am on Saturday…and he’s talked about the weather, his work, the plane that got shot down, and going to my brothers house to help install a door.

He won’t bring it up…he never does….and I’m the kind of person who has to have closure….I NEED to talk through things that bother me…hurtful things…but there is no doing that with PA Man….that’s why getting over his affair has been so difficult…no closure.
No feeling safe anymore…no trust being rebuilt…

And I’ve decided…I can’t live this way the rest of my life. I need a man that loves me and I feel safe with…and if I never meet that man, that’s ok….I know I’ll be ok all alone…because I’ve been alone my whole married life!
But I feel I deserve a chance to see what’s out there…what God might have in store for me…I deserve happiness, and it’s taken me a long time to come to accept that.

My marriage is over…

So PA Man has been gone this week on his business trip…and it’s been a rocky week.
His PA was in full emotional abuse mode…and I’m tired of it!
I’m making plans with my sister….ok, I’d better back up here a bit.

My oldest sister is moving to my town. She found out 2 weeks ago that she’s being laid off the first of October…and her daughter, my niece, has been wanting to move here for over a year, so they’ve talked about it and have decided to take the plunge!
As you can probably imagine I’m sooo excited! LM has been divorced for 4 yrs now..she was married to a VERY selfish man, so she really does understand my life with PA Man!!
Anyway, she’s been such a help and encouragement to me, since I let her in on my “real” marriage!
After this last week with PA Man…it’s so obvious that he wants his cake and eat it too..He wants his comfy life, his family, his “good” reputation, his “Godly” reputation…GAG…but he wants to do NOTHING to do with me and my emotional safety and security, and his excuses for his emotionally abusive behavior has just gotten to the point that I have decided that I don’t want to live this way anymore!!
So I’ve made a plan with my sister…a 3 yr plan!
Yes, I KNOW!! THREE years….but hey, I’ve lived in a hellish relationship since I found out about his affair 3 1/2 yrs ago…so I KNOW I can do it!!

But I want to plan carefully…I want to be set up financially so that I know I won’t be struggling too badly..also, my youngest son will be close to 18 yrs old…almost a man!
I’m tucking money away right now, and when LM gets here, I’m opening a bank acct. with her name on it…trying to do this the smart way, NOT the emotional way.

I feel better already…calmer, knowing I have a plan….
PA Man wants to trade in my car for a brand new one….I’ve been resistant to that, but you know what…I think I will! And with double payments….we could have it paid off within that 3 yrs…so I leave the marriage with a newer vehicle!! πŸ™‚
Also, I told PA Man last week that I don’t want to sell our house…instead we are going to make a few improvements that will increase the value…again, looking down the road, since we got a REALLY great deal on this house when we had it built 8 yrs ago, and I know when we sell it, we should get a pretty good return!

I’ve read and reread Leslie Vernicks book, The Emotionally Destructive Marriage, and she talks about getting things lined up before you leave…so that’s what I’m going to do!
I am now looking out for ME!!!
And I feel calmer and happy with the plans that I’m making…it’s taken some time to come to terms with my life and my marriage…but this is NOT a marriage and I want AND deserve happiness!
As a friend reminded me in an email this week, I am “sexy as hell, kind, loving, feisty, a fantastic cook and mother, and so much fun.” (Thx Paula, that really made my day! πŸ™‚
And you know what..I AM all of those things! But I just forgot…

PA Man was cruel this week…he doesn’t care about me and it was so obvious to me….I’ve been in tears for days…and I think it’s because it has finally hit me…my marriage isn’t really a marriage.

So. It’s time to make plans for my escape…and hopefully find TRUE happiness down the road!

As silly as it might sound…I want to go out west…I want to work on a ranch as a cook…cause, baby, I CAN cook!! πŸ˜€ It’s always been a dream of mine…and life is about living your dreams, right??

So today begins a new chapter in my life, and I really feel at peace…I’ve prayed and prayed and I feel that God is telling me to let my marriage go.
So I am.

Please watch this….even though it IS hard to watch!

http://www.leslievernick.com/2014/05/07/fred-and-marie-a-case-study/

I’m posting this, in the hope that someone will see this and recognize verbal and emotional abuse for what it truly is…

While PA Man hasn’t ever been this abusive…Thank God!! I do see and recognize subtle ways he has acted…

In the very beginning, as Fred comes in the door, he turns off the music Marie is listening to. She’s in the kitchen cooking, she’s enjoying her music, and he doesn’t even respect her enough to ask if it’s ok to turn the music off….I didn’t catch that when I first watched the video…maybe because it’s my life…PA Man does that to me ALL.THE.TIME!

The same with the air conditioning, the ceiling fans, etc…He walks into a room, and he shuts them off!
I’m going to speak up for now on and ask him to please respect me and ask before he turns off my music, fans, air conditioning!

Please! If you’re in this kind of relationship…look for a way to get out!

I found this on leslievernick.com Her blog is wonderful, full of helpful advice, I highly recommend it!!

Hallmark Channel and a Dream….

 

PA Man is out of town this week….AND next week! πŸ˜€ Can you say HaPpY DaNcE??

And he was gone the week before last AND the week before that!

I LOVE his job!! LOL!

The boys and I are having so much fun…I made a delicious dinner last night, and my married son and DIL came over…they stayed until 11:00…on a work night!

We are a family…minus the father. And I find that sad…that no one misses him.

In fact, son #3, when he came down for dinner, asked, “Where dad?” And I said “He’s out of town, remember?” Β Son #3, “Oh, right, I forgot.”

They don’t care….they never ask if he arrived safely. Or when he’ll be home….And I know that this is part of being older teens/young adults….but still…they just never ask about him at all!

And I get it. I really do! Because I’m the same way! I wish it wasn’t like that…but it is.

I don’t think I love him anymore….well, yes, I DO love him….but I’m not IN love with him.

I had a dream 2 nights ago…Darn the Hallmark Channel and their stupid movies! LOL!

I was in love…I mean LOVE!!! The heart pounding, can’t wait to be in his arms kind of love!!

In the dream, I was older than the man I was so deeply in love with….and I got cold feet and was going to leave…but his family BEGGED me to stay, Β to wait for my love to get back….I have no idea where he was…it WAS a dream and it made no sense. As most dreams do! LOL

So I waited….and I felt such love from my dream mans family…and when dream man came….I felt so complete, so LOVED, so WANTED, so CHERISHED….that when I woke up, I was crushed that it had only been a dream.

I wanted to cry.

Because it wasn’t real. Because I realized that I’ve NEVER felt like what I felt in that dream…

But I didn’t cry….I pushed the sadness away, got up, and went about my day, because this is real life, and I’m too old to have happily ever afters…I’m 53, I had my chance….and now it’s gone.

But if you are reading this….if you’re young, if you have your whole life ahead of you still…GO! Get out!! There ARE decent, kind, loving men out there!

Don’t settle for this half life! Find a love that will cherish you, protect you, support you…it does exists!!

Just don’t settle for anything less!! Have a dream…and hold on to it with both hands and go for it! πŸ™‚

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another talk with PA Man….part 2

So I decided to ask PA Man the three questions that are in the book, The Emotionally Destructive Marriage.
The author believe that these questions will be very helpful for several different reasons..
“First, they will give you an opportunity to have a different kind of dialogue with your husband…one that will catch him by surprise and allow you to see beyond his anger and defensiveness, into a deeper part of his heart.”

Ok. That sounds pretty good. Right??

Second, “It will give him time to be self reflective and more aware of his own thoughts and feelings.”

Ok, that sounds great!

Third, “His answers or lack of answers will give you feedback that will help you to know how to best shape future conversations with him.”

Awesome! Future conversations….I can dig that! πŸ˜‰

So ok, I’m ready to roll…I have my sympathy hat on…my respect alert button in on full throttle (all suggestions she makes in the book) and I PROMISE…no eye rolling, no arguing, no debating if his answers are wrong or unfair….check! I sooo have this!!

Ok, so here I go…I calmly ask PA Man if I can talk to him, that I’d like to ask him three questions from the book that I’ve been reading (he knows about THE BOOK since I mentioned it to him several days earlier)

PA Man is sitting on the couch, with his laptop on his lap (first mistake, I should have asked him to put it down)
Anyway, I’m at the table in the dining room, it’s a open concept so while technically we aren’t in the same room, we can see and hear each other.

Ok. Here it goes…the first question….

ME: “Are you happy?”
PA Man: Am I happy?
ME: Yes, are you happy?
PA Man: No.
ME: Ok, I’m sorry you’re not happy.
PA Man: Well I’m not happy because I know YOU’RE not happy!
ME: OH, ok….ME: “Well you know I’m not happy because of how broken our relationship is”…. <silence>…Okaaayyy then…on to question 2…

ME: Question two…”What do you see as our most important goal or challenge as a couple if we’re going to improve our relationship?”

PA Man:I don’t know…want do YOU think??
ME: This isn’t about me, I want to hear what you think. (By this time he’s now looking down at his laptop, more then he’s looking at me!)
PA Man: Well, I guess I want us to understand each other.
Me: “Ok”….I wait, hoping there would be more…nope. Nothing.

Last Question…
ME: “What kind of husband and father do you most want to be?”
PA Man: A good provider.
ME: Well, ok, but you’re already a very good provider.
PA Man: (As he’s looking down at his laptop) I guess a good relationship with the boys…and you.

And that was it. Those were his responses. I sat there in silence for a couple of minutes…and then I asked him one final question…It was MY question, not from the book I was reading…
I asked him, “What are your future goals in life?”
PA Man: “What so you mean?”
ME: You know? Future plans…looking down the road, do you want to still be with the same company, do you want a higher position within your company? Do you want to live elsewhere? Where would you like to retire to one day?”

PA Man: “I don’t know, I never think that far ahead.”

ME: “Oh.”

So there ya go. That little experiment was a dismal failure.

In her book, Leslie Vernick says that “Honest talk, when bathed in compassionate listening, builds intimacy.”

I do agree with her…but that’s in a NORMAL marriage…and marriage with a PA is ANYTHING but normal.

But at least I tried.

A discussion with PA Man…

So as you know, I read The Emotionally Destructive Marriage last week and it really made me realize how much I have changed in the last few years!

I have been angry, bitter, resentful, etc..And yes, a lot of that was because of the affair, and the aftermath…PA Man refusing to work with me on healing, to go to counseling…walking away when I was crying and begging him to open up to me….and I do feel I was justified in my anger.

But I have also realized that I was verbally abusive….yes. I’ll admit it. I WAS verbally abusive….I called him names like loser, jerk, sucker, jackass…you get the picture!

And yes, again, I do realize that A LOT of that was because I was hurting soooo badly after his betrayal…and it’s a pretty normal response.

BUT as a Christian, I know that I SHOULD have prayed and asked God to help me, to be my comforter and protector…but instead, I chose to become angry and bitter!

So after reading Leslie Vernicks book I decided I needed to apologize to PA Man for my actions….so Saturday afternoon I asked him if I could talk to him for a few minutes and he said “Sure.”

i started out by telling him about the book I had read, just bits and pieces, not everything….and I told him that I felt I owed him an apology for my behavior…Not necessarily for the time right after the affair came out…but for the last year or so….And so I did.

I told him I was sorry, that after reading this book I realized I have become verbally abusive, and I asked him if he would please forgive me…

A few things were said back and forth….but the whole gist of the story is…He never looked and me and said, “Yes, I forgive you” nor did he say, “And will you please forgive me, for the way I’ve acted?”

NOT that I was expecting him to…but still!?!?

I know some people won’t understand why I felt the need to do that….but I did it for ME!!!! Not PA Man…I knew he wouldn’t get it…remember, I’m dealing with the mentality of an 8 yr old here!

But I wanted to extend to him the same grace that God has extended to me…and I feel I did.

Part of what Leslie talks about Β in her book is about “staying well”…..IF you decide to stay with your spouse, do it with a heart of love, not romantic love, but love for a fellow human being…and that’s what I’m attempting to do. πŸ™‚

PA Man isn’t a BAD person….BUT he does lack empathy for others and is selfish, VERY selfish…though you don’t “see” it…it’s there.

After I apologized, he asked me about the book, so I explained that I really wanted to read it again before I discussed it with him, that I felt that I finally had found someone who understood what it was like living on our kind of marriage….

PA Man sits back in his chair, crosses his arms and says, “So what?? Are you going to give me a lot of rules to live by, Β is that what this is all about??”

I smiled at him and said, ” No, there are no rules for YOU, but there ARE rules for ME!!”

Always on the defensive….always looking to blame me…sigh…it IS the Passive Aggressive way of life.