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Thread: Married but still in love with my ex-boyfriend from high school

  1. #11
    Platinum Member Cherylyn's Avatar
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    Your old HS ex-boyfriend was just a kid back then. It was a different time when your relationship with your ex-boyfriend was carefree without adult responsibilities. He's an adult now with a different life. You need to make the contrast in your brain between being in HS and now as life became harder to survive economically. This scenario doesn't make for a rosy visual of what it would be like to rekindle your past flame. Both of you are not the same people anymore despite any wishful thinking. Most of all, you're married so focus on your current life as opposed to daydreaming. It's time to wake up to a harsh reality check.

    Set your priorities straight by working on your marriage. Your husband has VA benefits which can help treat his PTSD. Go that route and seek professional help for him through his military benefits.

    Regarding your ex, you need to change the way you think. Remain respectful, kind yet politely distant. Enforce healthy boundaries. You can say 'thank you' in response to his compliments but avoid getting chummy in the first place. Exit the friendship camaraderie. Your ex needs to remain professional. You can't control him. However, your behavior can dictate the relationship so it is at the less than acquaintance level.

    Do you need to frequent this retail store out of necessity or are you deliberately patronizing this store in particular? If you need to shop there, exercise discretion and hopefully he'll take the hint and back off. No need to discuss politics since it's unnecessary. Keep a safe distance and don't get personal. Don't drag out conversations. Remember, remain politely distant!

    Do a reset in your brain. Think logically and sensibly. Don't do nor say anything you'll regret. Take care of your marriage, your husband and your family. Do the right thing.

  2. #12
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    Lucy, I wanted to add this:
    When someone breaks or punch an object in front of you, you can already consider it as physical violence. Keep in mind that in domestic settings, abusers seldom hit the other person right away. They start by throwing things , screaming, testing your boundaries so to speak. I' m not saying that his intention is to hit you one day but it could very much happen.

    I know he has PTSD from war but you know what? Every abuser has a reason.
    Right now, he is not hitting you but he is scaring you and he's well aware of it. He is not a poor innocent man who should get a pass because he's been to war.
    He is scaring you. How does you losing your job trigger a ptsd from him? and like another poster pointed out, if you are scared , how do you think your kids feel...

    You say he loves you, then he should really show you that he's doing everything to save this mariage by adressing his issues. (Taking anger management therapy, leave the room instead of hitting things etc)

    He also need to know that you will no longer put up with his violents outburst.
    You really need to work on being independent from him financially. I have the feeling he saved you from being a single mom and unfortunatly now you feel the need to be saved from him.

    You can make. your life better. Go to therapy for yourself and consider separation if needed.
    Do not wait for the violence to escalate. Please take actions.
    Posting here was your first action. Continue.

  3. #13
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    " if your husband had cancer, everyone would think you were a jerk for leaving. PTSD is an illness and being ex-military, you should know about it at least in passing. "

    I disagree. Being in a relationship means that you (mostly) feel happy and you're getting something out of it. A relationship is not to solely just be a carer and therapist for someone because they're sick.

    Wanting to leave because you're unhappy doesn't make someone a jerk. The OP already does her best to support her husband's PTSD. She changes her whole lifestyle to suit him and she's "walking on eggshells". You shouldn't have to change yourself and your life for your partner. She's barely even allowed to go out with friends because he guilts her for it. Also showing violence towards himself or objects is still violence. She has children and they should not have to see that!

    It's up to you OP what you want to do about your marriage. But don't feel obliged to stay if you're really unhappy and don't always feel safe with your husband.

    Regarding your "high school sweetheart". It sounds to me like you've always felt about him as "the one that got away". I understand the feeling of mourning what could have been. I guess if you both have feelings for each other, you could try dating. But I think you should be realistic about this and not see it through rose coloured glasses. You dated when you were teenagers and no doubt you are both different now. Just because he's been a good friend to you doesn't mean he's a perfect boyfriend. Also why did he not pursue you when you were single for those two years? He might have feelings for you, but maybe they're not as strong as you think. In any case, you shouldn't do anything until you leave your husband.

  4. #14
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Please don't buy into this. Abusers can't be fixed even when their targets drag them to doctors/therapy. The right thing is to get the kids away from someone who has frequent violent rages, not to put them in the background to desperately hang onto a man and wish and hope that one day one of the "inanimate objects he breaks and destroys" isn't one of the kids. Take care of your children they need you more than a grown man raging and throwing things who enjoys being violent.
    Originally Posted by Cherylyn
    seek professional help for him through his military benefits. Take care of your marriage, your husband and your family. Do the right thing.

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  6. #15
    Platinum Member ThatwasThen's Avatar
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    He's not your "typical" abuser. He is suffering from PTSDisorder in which he can control and overcome if he worked on it with a therapist trained in tools to overcome it and with proper medication. I'd not give up on him until he's at least gone that route and if he won't, well then that alone would be a good reason to leave him because to stay with him is just giving him a soft place to suffer through his disorder without having to work on getting over it.

  7. #16
    Platinum Member Gary Snyder's Avatar
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    Walking on eggshells because of your husband's PTSD is living a life of quiet desperation.

    However, the other man might not be a good idea either. If you two started to date again, you might realize that the love died a long time ago (it's called ghostly lover syndrome). So I would not leave your husband for this other man that you think is your true love - he may not be.

  8. #17
    Platinum Member Cherylyn's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Wiseman2
    Please don't buy into this. Abusers can't be fixed even when their targets drag them to doctors/therapy. The right thing is to get the kids away from someone who has frequent violent rages, not to put them in the background to desperately hang onto a man and wish and hope that one day one of the "inanimate objects he breaks and destroys" isn't one of the kids. Take care of your children they need you more than a grown man raging and throwing things who enjoys being violent.
    If the OP wants to make a last ditch effort, she should take advantage of his military benefits which includes professionals who treat veterans with PTSD. I'm not advising her to remain in an abusive marriage. I agree with removing all family members out of harm's way. Military benefits are there for a reason. She and her husband should use it since that's what he paid for.

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