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i guess it is broken...


sharsachan

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my husband and i have been seperated since January 5th, you can read my recent previous threads here, in healing after, in pregnancy, and in relationship conflicts for all the information if you want.

 

what it comes down to is that i don't think he really knows why he left. but he won't get help. he won't go to counseling, he won't talk, nothing. the best/only answer i get is he isn't happy. or "i dunno"

 

i didn't want a divorce, i don't want it now.

 

in 11 days i'm having our second baby. i really wanted for us to wait until after the baby was born and things had calmed down before we decided anything so severe.

 

when we first seperated, i told him that if we ended up divorcing, i would probably move to a town about 4 hours away, still the same state, because i don't really have friends here to lean on and help me and i did in the other town. and he totally flipped out that i was stealing the kids away and he'd never see them. i haven't worked in 8 months, i have no income. i told him that i couldn't stay here without help, especially if i had two kids who would need day care of some sort.

 

we agreed that i'd get a job as soon as i could and he'd help me out with watching the kids while as i was work, and money and stuff. which was okay, it was good, i don't WANT to take my kids away from daddy, he is a good man and a good father.

 

today he told me that he wants to fill out the divorce paper work and that he is planning on moving either to a place that is over 15 hours drive away, or to a state that is closer to a 30 hour drive away.

 

i asked him "are you that unhappy here? i thought you wanted to be near your kids."

 

and he just shrugged. i know that he doesn't like it here, we often talked about moving but we couldn't afford it yet. but i hadn't thought that he would actually leave his kids.

 

i've thought for awhile that he's fallen into a depression and i know i can't fix him and i know if he won't go get help then there isn't much anyone can do. but i love this man and i don't want him hurting. he hasn't done anything to make me stop loving him. even seperated, he's still been paying the bills and stuff, almost all his income goes to me and my son right now.

 

i don't want my kids to not know daddy, i want them to have a strong relationship with him. this man is a great father to our son, and he's been a wonderful husband to me. i just don't know how everything could get so bad. i don't understand how he could be so unhappy that he would want to go so far away from his kids, or why he doesn't want to get any help.

 

i don't think he's stopped loving me either, he goes out of his way some times to do or buy things for me, or help me. he hasn't been cruel since he left and like i said, he still pays for everything.

 

i just don't understand. i see that at this point, it IS broken and i can't fix it. all i can really do is go through with the paper work because he's obviously not happy right now and it's been 4 months since he left and not much has really changed.

 

i can see that there is something wrong with him, and i can see that i can't get to it and i can't help. right now i have to worry about myself and the kids.

 

but i don't want it to be broken. i don't want to give up like he wants to. i don't want my kids to lose their dad. i dont want him to lose the kids. our son adores him. he's so happy every time he sees daddy and he hates it when daddy leaves. it tears me apart to think that is going to change.

 

our little boy is only one year old. if daddy goes away, he isn't going to remember him. that bond is going to change, it's going to be lost. and our second baby isn't ever going to have that chance.

 

i know i can't fix it. but what do i? how do i go forward from this? i know i need to just let him go right now. i know that i don't have the choice. he made the choice that this is what he wants and now i have to choose how to go forward from this but i don't know. i don't want him hurting but i can't do anything about it. i don't know what to do with the kids. i of course would never say anything bad [there's nothing bad to say, he's a wonderful man] about daddy to them, but i'm afraid that he won't get better, and that he won't be able to be there for the kids. i want them to love him and know him. but i can't possibly afford to move to where he wants to go. he knows people there, in both places, but i don't.

 

we have the paper work for uncontested divorce which we started filling out today [his request] and he just keeps telling me "just put whatever you want, i don't want to fight about it" i guess he just wants out as fast as he can get out because he thinks he'll be happier that way.

 

which is selfish, i know, but i've been through depression and i know that you want to do anything you think will make it better. i think he's been depressed for awhile, and he thinks that if he changes what is causing him stress [at the moment, his family, being the only income, worried about the economy, etc] that it will make him happier.

 

what do i do? i'm so lost right now. i don't want to think he or the relationship was broken but i guess it was....

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i asked him "are you that unhappy here? i thought you wanted to be near your kids."

 

I have been following your story from the start, and I think he completely lost his mind now.

 

The idea that he'd move 15 hours away from your first son, when that little boy needs his dad in his life, and never even give the new baby a chance is horrible. Even if he does not want to be married he played a role creating these children and he is just going to abandon them like that?

 

It almost seems like after you had your first baby he became totally overwhelmed and didn't feel prepared to be a father. Instead of trying to learn and cope- he ran away. I've heard that men can go through a similar type of "postpartum depression" with the birth of a child- maybe that happened to him? link removed

 

If he flees 15 hours away, I really hope you move closer to people that can help you.

 

I can't believe he is dropping this bomb on you before you are about to give birth. He can't possibly be in his right mind.

 

I'm so sorry- I don't know how you hold it together. You are one strong woman.

 

((Hugs))

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I am sorry to read about your situation. But this is a good place to be.

 

I read through your story twice to get a better idea of the situation. Not being a medical expert, I cannot say that your husband is depressed or emotionally unstable. But from what you have said, he shows the signs that indicate some form of depression and/or emotional disorder.

 

Has he ever been diagnosed previously or had a family history of depression or addiction?

 

One of the biggest problems there is when dealing with someone that wants out of a intimate relationship (especially with children involved) "just like that", is that they do not think that they have any kind of problem. For most depressive ailments, denial of the disease, is a point of commonality. It is also the stumbling block on getting real help. The first step to recovery is admitting your ailment but it is also a symptom of the disease. Thus the Catch-22.

 

No matter how well intended, how rationally explained, not even if beg and plead to tears, emotionally distressed people will most often not admit that they have a problem. That would be a rational move and they are not.

 

I tried intervention with my children (they were older) to try and get my X to see her behavior for what it was. A day or so later she told us, smiling, that we were all crazy and she was fine. Is there someone from his family that is out of town that he would trust enough, to be able to convince to go to a doctor? Even his G.P.?

 

Denial was the hardest thing that I had to deal with my X.

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would you say you're in denial?

 

you keep repeating that he is a good man...does a "good man" by your definition, someone that loves you and/or your kids...would leave like this?

 

I have to say, I agree.

 

"Good" is the last thing I think of when I read your story: "Selfish" "Cowardly".....those words seem more appropriate to describe his behavior.

 

I'm sorry, I don't mean to bash the man that you chose to marry and have children with. I know this must be hard for you.

 

The bottom line is that if he chooses to run away from his children, it is HIS loss. Those kids will be loved and know they are loved.

 

I think it is reaching the point where you need to call a lawyer so that you have 2 feet to stand on if he serves you with divorce papers.

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hi - i totally agree with belladonna. i am so sorry, i've been following your story. it really does sound like he is depressed, but like john benedix said, i'm not a doctor either. he is running away, and that isn't going to help things. i agree with you moving closer to friends and family. i think that is a sensible plan, to get some help with childcare so you can focus on supporting your family. even if he does give you child support, it won't be enough. i think he will one day realize he's made a big mistake, but i don't know when. it might not be for years. you might be moved on by then with a new man who doesn't run away from his responsibilities.

 

i can totally see the new father depression thing. suddenly, his whole world has changed, he has people depending on him, and maybe it's all been too much for him. however, running away isn't the way to go. i'm sorry he won't stay and go to counseling with you.

 

for what it's worth, i would just go move with the family, tell him that you want him to see the kids as much as possible, but since he wants to divorce you, you have no choice, emotionally or financially, but to go move closer to your family. if i were in your shoes, that's what i'd do too. he can stomp his feet and whine, but hey - he is the one who is talking about moving 15 hours away!

 

hugs. hang in there. you seem like a strong, smart woman, i am sure you will be able to land on your feet and have a good life for your children.

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would you say you're in denial?

 

you keep repeating that he is a good man...does a "good man" by your definition, someone that loves you and/or your kids...would leave like this? say that you can't move 4 hours away to make ends meet, then for him to move that far? Leave his kids that he couldn't live 4 hours away?

 

I think you're finally seeing the light...hope you get there fast as you have the other baby on the way.

 

I see it more this way: Would a man in his right mind leave his kids? Does not seem that way. It seems to me is that he is desperate. Could it be that he is desperately trying to escape from some form of pain and suffering he is experiencing?

 

Internal pain that is distorting his decison making ability to the point that he sees running away from his present situation as the only way to eleviate his extreme discomfort. Even if this is not the case, is it worth looking into?

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I agree with John Bendix. I know someone whom this happened to. This guy she had been with for three years. He was the de facto father of her child from a previous relationship. He wants and wants and wants for them to have a baby together. She gets pregnant - boom - he's outta there.

 

Well, turns out the guy had bi-polar. He went to a doctor, got on medications, and now they're getting married on Saturday. I just really sense that your intuition is not necessarily off - especially with how suddenly this happened, with no warning, with no prior shady behavior. Usually people who are in fact cowardly or whatever one wants to call it - they exhibit that characteristic in other areas of their lives, it's not something that would turn on like a light switch.

 

I'm so sorry. But you are doing all the right things. You're going to have to let go of the outcomes where he is involved; you just have no control over anything but yourself and you're just going to have to act in yours and your children's best interests, which you are doing. I encourage you to follow your instincts and go ahead and move to a place where you and your kids will have people who will help you out. He may never come to his senses. It's really sad.

 

If he does come to his senses, I'm sure he will seek you out. Until then, keep taking the next right action for you and your wee ones.

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would you say you're in denial?

 

you keep repeating that he is a good man...does a "good man" by your definition, someone that loves you and/or your kids...would leave like this? say that you can't move 4 hours away to make ends meet, then for him to move that far? Leave his kids that he couldn't live 4 hours away?

 

I think you're finally seeing the light...hope you get there fast as you have the other baby on the way.

 

i believe he is a good person. good people can suffer mental/emotional problems that make them chose irrational paths. i have had bipolar depression for years. i know that when i am at my lows, the ONLY thing that makes sense to me is what i think will end the pain/sadness i feel. you cannot see past that.

 

if he were not a good person, i don't believe that he would have kept supporting us after he left. he would not have paid the bills, the rent, he would not come over almost daily to see us, he would not help me with things when i asked, he would probably have disappeared and i'd have been left homeless or something. he would have taken his money and moved as soon as he left and i would have been screwed.

 

that's not what happened.

 

i honestly believe that he is severely suffering. he doesn't want to hurt us, i don't believe for an instant that he has done any of this to hurt us. i think he's done it because in his mind right now whether consciously or subconsciously, he thinks it will make him feel better.

 

i know i can't change his mind and i know i can't fix it for him.

 

i need to know how to step forward out of this.

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well, he is under a legal obligation to pay bills, whether he wants to or not. you can go after him for child support, as the father of your childen.

 

i agree with belladonna, first thing you need to do is contact a divorce lawyer and tell them what is going on, and then make sure that your children are taken care of.

 

i'm sorry you are going through all of this right now.

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Is there any possibility he's seeing someone else?

 

everything is possible but i would say that i am 99.9% sure he isn't. the only reason it isn't 100% is because he no longer lives here so i don't see him as much. but his paycheck is direct deposited into our joint account and i see his money go directly to our bills with nothing left over and he is almost alwase either here, at work, or at his mom's [where he is currently staying; i take our son over there to see grandma and he is alwase there]

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Who is going to be there with you at the hospital for the birth of the 2nd baby?

 

he was going to be there. i don't know if that has changed or not, i suppose i should ask him. he is also supposed to have our son for the nights i am in the hospital with the c-section.

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well, he is under a legal obligation to pay bills, whether he wants to or not. you can go after him for child support, as the father of your childen.

 

i agree with belladonna, first thing you need to do is contact a divorce lawyer and tell them what is going on, and then make sure that your children are taken care of.

 

i'm sorry you are going through all of this right now.

 

i really don't have any way to get a lawyer. i have already spoken to legal aid in my county and they told me that they do not deal with family and divorce cases. and i cannot afford a regular lawyer. the only money i have is what my husband brings in.

 

i know that he will have to pay child support, and he knows too. like i said, we HAVE been going over the divorce paper work. he has to pay at least 25% of his income to child support. i don't think i will have to 'go after him' for it but it is part of the paper work, no worry there.

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I see it more this way: Would a man in his right mind leave his kids? Does not seem that way. It seems to me is that he is desperate. Could it be that he is desperately trying to escape from some form of pain and suffering he is experiencing?

 

Internal pain that is distorting his decison making ability to the point that he sees running away from his present situation as the only way to eleviate his extreme discomfort. Even if this is not the case, is it worth looking into?

 

this is what i think has happened. i know that he has fought depression all his life. he has attempted suicide in the past [before i met him].

 

and i also know that he won't go to a dr or therapist or counseling or anything. i have asked. i asked him to go to marriage counseling with me when he first left and i have asked him if he would consider separate counseling if he would feel more comfortable not having me in the room. he refused both suggestions, telling me that he went to counseling as a child and it did nothing then and he didn't want to go back. i don't know what kind of experience he had as a child or anything about it really, that's all he would say.

 

i know that right now, i'm walking this road alone. i don't blame him if he is suffering depression, as i have been there before i know the desperation and pain, and how much you want it to stop, and how you're willing to do anything if you think it will make you feel better.

 

i really hope that he can get it together enough to be there for the kids. because he was really great when our son was born, and even since he left, he still comes almost daily to visit him and usually takes him on his days off.

 

i really honestly believe that he is suffering some form of depression right now. it hurts to know that there is nothing i can do to keep it from tearing apart the family. really, the only positive i can see right now is that the kids ARE so young. i was 17 when my parents divorced and their relationship had been unhealthy for years before that. at least my kids will never have to see and remember like i did. i would rather they be able to visit daddy and have him be happy to see them. instead of living with both parents but believing one of them hates you [as is the case i had with me mother before my parents finally divorced]

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did you tell him that just because one therapist as a child didn't work, that's no reason not to try again.

 

i mean, ok, he says he's not happy. what is it going to take for him to be happy? i think that happiness is more a state of mind rather than situational.

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did you tell him that just because one therapist as a child didn't work, that's no reason not to try again.

 

i mean, ok, he says he's not happy. what is it going to take for him to be happy? i think that happiness is more a state of mind rather than situational.

 

i have said that. but he refuses to talk to anyone because of that childhood experience. i told him that it will be a different experience, different person, all that but he is stubborn, or something. i don't know.

 

it's so hard for me to know that someone i love is hurting so badly and to know that i can't do anything about it. i have no control

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did you tell him that just because one therapist as a child didn't work, that's no reason not to try again.

 

i mean, ok, he says he's not happy. what is it going to take for him to be happy? i think that happiness is more a state of mind rather than situational.[/QUOTE]

 

I'm sory but a little confused on this. If happiness is a state of mind and not situational, why would it be necessary to find out what it is going to take for him to be happy? That would be seeking a preferred situation that will allow him to be happy. If you are saying that it is our persepctive or how we perceive our life situation that determines whether or not you feel happiness (or any emotional reaction), then I agree.

 

The abrupt, radical change in behavior would indicate that he is not in a very highly rational state. He might not even know what would bring him a feeling of happiness or how he might be viewing his life situation.

 

I would do what makes sense to you right now which includes taking care of your son and your unborn child, and let the outcome with him come as it may. You really have no control overwhat he does. Check link removed for a list of undiagnosed symptoms of depression and how they can be affecting you.

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well, i guess what i was trying to say is this...... i just am thinking about him - what happens if he leaves his wife, they both move on, and a few years down the road, he meets a new woman, they fall in love, they have 2 more children.... if he doesn't learn how to deal with his feelings and stuff, i can see him doing the exact same thing to his next wife/gf - just running away when things get hectic!

 

and yes, i agree, he does not sound rational.

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well, i guess what i was trying to say is this...... i just am thinking about him - what happens if he leaves his wife, they both move on, and a few years down the road, he meets a new woman, they fall in love, they have 2 more children.... if he doesn't learn how to deal with his feelings and stuff, i can see him doing the exact same thing to his next wife/gf - just running away when things get hectic!

 

and yes, i agree, he does not sound rational.

 

That would suck if he did that. But it's completely out of the OP's control. The only thing she has enough room on her plate for right now is getting her and her little ones taken care of. Unfortunately, no one can save her husband...except him.

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One thing that you need to consider is that sometimes people just decide they don't want the family life... it is too much responsbility all the time. It can make some people feel trapped, bored, hemmed in, hopeless, etc.

 

This really sounds like a case of he just discovered he doesn't want the domestic lifestyle right now. And your 2nd pregnancy was a surprise right on the heels of the first, so the two combined probably put him over the top in terms of saying to himself i better get out now or i'll never get out.

 

So he may have a huge depression, but it could be because he just doesn't like domestic life. I've known some men who just can't do it, and they may marry several times in an attempt to do it, but they panic after marriage and eventually run because they don't like feeling hemmed in and having all the chld rearing responsibility.

 

The fact that he is making a choice to take a job 15 or 30 hours away says a lot. He doesn't want daily interaction with the kids, or he would stay close by. So he may be a 'responsible' father in terms of putting in the time now (feels guilty), but is pressing for the divorce becasue he really wants to take off and be free from the day to day demands of child rearing.

 

He may be doing it now because he feels obligated/guilty, but he's making an escape plan what will shortly get rid of all of the responsbility except sending you 25% per month.

 

So you need to shift into protecting yourself and your kids rather than focusing on him like he's a wounded bird. He may be wounded, but he also may have just decided he doesn't like domestic life and all the responsibliity it brings including commitments on his time and freedom.

 

Make sure the divorce papers give you sole custody, so that you can make all decisions about your sons without having to get his approval. Frequently people will behave well around the time of separation, but once he's half way accross the country, it becomes out of sight, out of mind and you need to make sure you have your legal ducks in a row with full custody and a legal agreement that gives you child support.

 

Sometimes they will even move far away becuase it makes it harder to collect child support between states unless the states have a cooperative agreement. And if he moves from place to place, he's never anywhere long enough for you to file with that state to garnish his paycheck. He may not be intending that, but you never know.

 

btw, the 25% should be 25% before taxes, not after taxes. So if he made $10K/month before taxes, he should give you $2500. It's not 25% of take home paycheck, but before tax income. Make sure you specify that in the agreement.

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One thing that you need to consider is that sometimes people just decide they don't want the family life... it is too much responsbility all the time. It can make some people feel trapped, bored, hemmed in, hopeless, etc.

 

This really sounds like a case of he just discovered he doesn't want the domestic lifestyle right now. And your 2nd pregnancy was a surprise right on the heels of the first, so the two combined probably put him over the top in terms of saying to himself i better get out now or i'll never get out.

 

So he may have a huge depression, but it could be because he just doesn't like domestic life. I've known some men who just can't do it, and they may marry several times in an attempt to do it, but they panic after marriage and eventually run because they don't like feeling hemmed in and having all the chld rearing responsibility.

 

The fact that he is making a choice to take a job 15 or 30 hours away says a lot. He doesn't want daily interaction with the kids, or he would stay close by. So he may be a 'responsible' father in terms of putting in the time now (feels guilty), but is pressing for the divorce becasue he really wants to take off and be free from the day to day demands of child rearing.

 

He may be doing it now because he feels obligated/guilty, but he's making an escape plan what will shortly get rid of all of the responsbility except sending you 25% per month.

 

So you need to shift into protecting yourself and your kids rather than focusing on him like he's a wounded bird. He may be wounded, but he also may have just decided he doesn't like domestic life and all the responsibliity it brings including commitments on his time and freedom.

 

Not being able to handle the responsibility of a domestic situation? That well may be true. But this may even be more of a sign that he is unstable. While knowing that he "should" be doing this for his family and not being able to emotionally handle it, sets up dissonance.

 

Cognitive dissonance that therapists and researchers are finding plays a significant role in emotional distress. The two paths that someone feels compelled to take and that leaves them with unpleasant emotional reactions whichever one they choose. They often cannot make up their minds because of the dissonance and then do nothing or look to irrational reasons to base their decision on.

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he was going to be there. i don't know if that has changed or not, i suppose i should ask him. he is also supposed to have our son for the nights i am in the hospital with the c-section.

 

Did you talk to him about this? If so, what did he say?

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sharsachan,

 

wow, I feel for you, and send you hugs. It sounds like such a painful situation.

 

You have to take care of your self FIRST, so that you can then take care of your children NEXT.

 

These seem to happen simultaneously, because your children are dependent, but your decisions and actions will be based on these priorities. Think of it as if you are traveling on a plane, and the plane has mechanical difficulties and the oxygen masks are released. You are in crisis mode and must take care of your self first, get your oxygen (essential for clear thinking and effective action!), then take care of your children. Your husband is out of range, so you can not help him even if he can not help himself. But you can ask a helper (flight attendant in the analogy; family member, doctor, clergy, friend in your real situation) to check on him, talk to him about getting the help needed. He may need to hear that numerous times from numerous sources.

 

Your idea of moving 4 hours away to be near YOUR support group is very wise. Get that support team in place as soon as possible, IMO. You are laying the foundation for your stable future, and your children's. Whatever happens with or without your husband, your stability is your first priority. (And your being stable might inadvertently help him.) It sounds like you will keep him and his family a part of your children's life, and that may become a part of your wider support, but build up your closest, most available structure first.

 

I am not experienced in this, but it just makes sense from my perspective.

 

Take very good care of yourself. Sending extra hugs for your son and your soon to be born baby.

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Did you talk to him about this? If so, what did he say?

 

he says he still wants to be there. he is even going to leave work a bit early for it [he works midnight to 8am sunday night/monday morning, but i have to be at the hospital around 6a or 7a that monday morning]. his step dad is going to watch bear for the actual surgery while my husband is in the operating room with me but then he will have bear for the rest of the time.

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