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Relationship Health Message Board

Relationship Health Board Index

[QUOTE=bb_betty] Yes, I still love my husband. My feelings have changed greatly toward him over the past year--I feel I harbor much resentment toward him, but I still love him and if there is any way our marriage could be saved I would go to any lengths to save it--including leaving the affair--without a doubt. I only want back the sweet, caring, considerate, passionate man I married.[/QUOTE] Betty ~ This is a good start....I would worry about the possibility of getting back your marriage if you didn't have any hope back of doing so. Hope in the sense that you still love him and are committed to wanting to do something to save your marriage. I felt the same sort of resentment in the sense that I would do almost anything to save something so precious to me and yet he wouldn't. I found over time that this was not true....and that my husband had emtionally "shutdown" in response to me and I in response to him.

I will address this in further detail later on.

[QUOTE=bb_betty]I've heard it's "normal" for married couples to fall into a rut after so many years, but according to many, we should still be "honeymooning". We just had our third anniversary in March.[/QUOTE]

Yes, this is a little too soon but is similar to what I experienced with my husband when I first came here. We tend to think that everything will stay the same as when we won't and this is unrealistic. :nono: However, marriage and intimacy takes work and it is easy to let it go untended like a garden and if we don't water it or fertilize it soon the weeds will take over. :eek: For a man it's more like a car engine...if we don't maintain it soon the engine seizes and the car no longer works. A marriage takes just as much care & maintenance. Only it's so easy for us to forget and neglect to do so. I think this is what has occurred in your marriage. What do yout think??

[QUOTE=bb_betty]Something which may or may not be relevant is our age husband is eighteen years older than I am. I have also been told by numerous men (no, not ones wanting to get me into bed) that I am a very attractive, beautiful young woman. I do not feel this at all, coming from my husband. His attitude toward me for the last two years has bottomed my self-esteem.[/QUOTE] This is definitely not good. I know you need to feel this from your husband and as touchy a subject as it may be you must be willing to focus totally on your marriage and give up your affair in order to find out if you can save your marriage. Had you gone for any type of counselling prior to starting your affair???

[QUOTE=bb_betty]Also, my husband is VERY possessive. He does not let me leave the house without him, except to run errands in town during the day. He doesn't want me to have a job, so I never have any of my own money. He moved me from my hometown three years ago, and I have not made any new friends where we live now. He wants me TOTALLY dependent on him, which I am. It's as if HE doesn't really want me anymore, but he's not going to let anyone else have me, either....[/QUOTE] This is not a good sign either...and unless this behavior of your husbands can change then the marriage will suffer as will your self esteem. He sounds extremely controlling and if this is so, how have you carried on an affair without his knowledge???

[QUOTE=bb_betty]I have MADE HIM LISTEN--countless times. He just tells me what he thinks I want to hear to close the subject. After a while of laughing things off and trying to make me think it was just me, feeling this way for no reason, he saw that I wasn't going to leave it alone. So he started telling me things would get back to the way they used to be, then he would be romantic and loving for the next couple of days, to appease me, then it was back to me being ignored most of the time.[/QUOTE] This is all too familiar to me since I experienced much of the same thing. I was accused of complaining too much and with the help of some caring people here I came to realize that the more that I compalined the more that my husband would retreat and be unresponsive to my needs. I was able to change this with an approach and change within myself. Rather than complain and be like the wind (which only caused him to pull his coat tighter and back away for shelter) I learned to be more like the sun and suggest fun things to do and when he shared these things with me I would praise him and tell him how much I enjoyed doing them with him and how we should do it more often. Like the sun, he responded to the warmth and moved closer and thus I found that although I couldn't change him by changing some things about myself, I [B]was[/B] successful in bringing about changes with him in the way he responded. I have a formula....positive gets positive and negative gets negative. It took some time but by doing this on a day to day basis things improved and got better. Now I am able to tell my husband what I need in a loving and successful way.

I must be honest in telling you, that unless your husband is able to get help in terms of his controlling behavior, the outcome for your marriage may not be the same as for mine. Nobody deserves to be in a relationship in which you are not free to express yourself or go out shopping on your own. This is unhealthy and I would never advocate someone staying in a relationship in which somebody's self esteem is diminished. But this does not make having an affair any more right either. :nono: I was once in an abusive relationship and a few red flags go up with your husbands behavior. One big one is moving you away from your family & friends. Why did you move??? And are you able to talk to them or have them come for a visit??? I would like for you to further elaborate on this if you can.

(((HUGS))) ~ Goody
[QUOTE=bb_betty]i did not expect things to remain the way they were when we dated. i realize that the initial "spark", excitement of a new relationship cannot last forever. but for my husband to completely stop showing any affection after only a year of marriage was beyond me. hence my attempts to try and find out why....[/QUOTE] You are very wise & realistic in how you view marriage as it should be. Every person deserves to be shown love & affection and it is a strong need. I felt much the same way and believe that this could change, however, in your situation unless your husband gets the help he needs in order to work through his abusive behavior I see no chance of things healing in your marriage. So long as there is an abuser there will be abuse. Even if you were able to turn things around in terms of him being able to display love & affection there's still the bigger issue of abuse. I have been in your shoes while engaged to somebody else. He was quite affectionate but emotionally abusive to me on a daily basis. He severed all the relationships that were good and supportive to me much like I see hapenig in your situation. Abusers do this which leaves you more vulnerable and as easy prey. My ex fiance had eventually alienated me from my entire family and closest friends. I know the pain of emotional abuse and thank God everyday that I was able to walk away from it prior to marrying. I want you to know that I was lucky enough to see his "charade" because we had bought a house together and had lived together for about 3-4 months before his "charade" was uncovered. I am certain that if we hadn't then we would have married & I would have found it so much more difficult to walk away. I share this with you because I want you to know that I do understand.

[QUOTE=bb_betty]we have never received any counseling. this is yet another topic which is simply laughed off when touched on.[/QUOTE] One question I have is whether you had ever received counselling after being in the physically abusive relationship??? The first thing I did when I broke my engagement was to march myself into a therapist's office to find out why I had allowed myself to stay as long as I did in a relationship that was unhealthy and abusive. I wanted to be sure that I could identify that and fix it so that it would [B]never[/B] happen again. It only took a few sessions for me to find out and to equip myself with the tools I would need in order to make certain that I never fell prey to abuse again. I advise you to get some counselling now...if anything it will allow you to have closure to the past and also assist you in figuring out what it is you need to do for yourself now. I will be honest with you....I think you need to leave your marriage. I know that your fears come from not being able to support yourself but your self worth and dignity are worth so much more. Is there anyway that you can ask anyone in your family to help you out??? You need to establish a support system for yourself before making such a move. Do not bring any of this up with your husband until you have done so. Create a safehouse for yourself....have one of your friends or family members fly out to help you. I was afraid that once I had severed my ties with family & friends that I couldn't call upon them but I was never so wrong in my life. They were waiting in the wings to swoop in as my army of defense and I am certain that your family is waiting for you to call upon them in the same way. They love you and out of love will do anything to save you. Please know this.

[QUOTE=bb_betty]as far as how i'm able to carry on the affair with his controlling behavior, we meet during the day while my husband is at work. i'm always able to steal away for a few hours a couple days a week. running errands in town and such. i knew when i started the affair that it was WRONG, and still do. i know that my having a physical relationship with another man does not make what my husband is doing any better. but as i said previously, it really does a number on a woman's self-esteem when she begs her own husband for attention (for two years, nonetheless) to no avail.[/QUOTE] As I have said...I am not an advocate of affairs but am not here to pass judgement. Do you see this other man being able to be supportive in getting you out of an abusive situation??? You must remember, that unless you fix yourself after the damage, you are not giving your best to any relationship and also unknowingly falling victim to abusive relationships again. That is why I strongly suggest counselling.

[QUOTE=bb_betty]i have been in an abusive relationship before myself, and swore a man would never raise a hand to me again. but i think physical abuse hurts less than what i've experienced. i've shed tear after tear trying to explain to him how it hurts for him to act this way toward our marriage, but he's one who believes if it doesn't leave a visible mark then it doesn't hurt. the reason we moved was because the area we lived in before (my hometown) paid next to nothing for his field of work. so we moved to a bigger city so he'd be able to make more money. but he prefers to keep me here, away from my friends and family. he does not like me to go back for visits, as he knows that's where all my "exes" are. he never TELLS me what i can and cannot do, but he manipulates me to do as he wants, so that it's easier just to do as he wishes, rather that rock the boat. he was never this way, of course, before we married. i feel like i was sort of "tricked" into thinking he was the way i wanted him to be, and once we were married and he "had me", then he could stop the charade. i don't know.....i feel like i don't know anything anymore.[/QUOTE] This is all too familiar to me, and opens old wounds. I feel your pain and like you said, the emotional abuse is sooo much more hurtful than a slap or bruise that will go away. The words and cruelty and ripping away at your soul is far more painful. I see all the red flags that I had waving and it tells me to advise you to walk away. You cannot remain in a marriage that is so damaging & destructive to your very being.

Meanwhile...I just wanted to let you know that I am here for you. I have a busy weekend & will be checking in as I am able to but there are many here who are willing to help out as well. I want you to know that you are a special young lady who deserves to be happy. Nobody deserves to be abused physically or emotionally and the only option to happiness is walking away. There is no position or situation that warrrants you staying.

(((HUGS))) ~ Goody :angel:

PS ~ Please, if you haven't already thought about it, please make certain that you do not bring a child into this stiuation which would not only complicate matters and make it even more difficult to leave, but would subject an innocent child to a life of pain as well.

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