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Divorce after over 30 years of marriage?


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25 minutes ago, Seraphim said:

Has Covid made things worse? Lord knows what everyone has been through the past 15 months has driven millions upon millions into mental  malaise.  

Yes and how much physical exercise -vigorous physical activity -does he do? That can do wonders for attitude.

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4 hours ago, Meg1969 said:

However, for the past 10 years or so, he's become much more negative about so many things. It's hard to describe but it's like the absolute opposite of 'rose coloured glasses'.   So many things bother him and I feel like I'm just waiting for him to make the next negative comment. 

Ahh 😕 .. like a 'grumpy old man' ?  Miserable.

 

Do you have some decent friends? So you can at least get away from him more?

Have you explained to him that you dont want to hear his complaining every time?

Just sounds like he's 'not happy' with anything nowadays?  Is hard to live with all the negativity.. ( I wonder if he's approached his 'mid life crisis', if this has all occured recently?

Do you two get out on occasion & do date nights or something with your friends? ( or does he just sit at home & mope around?)

 

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1 hour ago, LaHermes said:

What drew you to him in the first instance. Was he always this neurotic. 

No, I don't remember him being like this from the beginning. We married very young but I reckon things were pretty calm up until our daughter became a teenager.  (We also have a slightly older son but he was so easy going growing up that there were no problems)  Our daughter is more spirited and there were constant arguments between her and her dad.  Even when she was a young adult (she's 25 now) there was friction and there probably still would be if she still lived at home.  

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3 minutes ago, Meg1969 said:

Our daughter is more spirited and there were constant arguments between her and her dad.  Even when she was a young adult (she's 25 now) there was friction and there probably still would be if she still lived at home.  

You are saying this is the cause of his grumpiness!? Surely not. And she wasn't a "problem", just a lively young girl like so many others.  Who doesn't argue with the parents now and then?  Lol

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3 minutes ago, Meg1969 said:

No, I don't remember him being like this from the beginning. We married very young but I reckon things were pretty calm up until our daughter became a teenager.  (We also have a slightly older son but he was so easy going growing up that there were no problems)  Our daughter is more spirited and there were constant arguments between her and her dad.  Even when she was a young adult (she's 25 now) there was friction and there probably still would be if she still lived at home.  

Have you posted again on ENA a few years back? Are you British originally? Trying to understand the dynamics....

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2 minutes ago, LaHermes said:

You are saying this is the cause of his grumpiness!? Surely not. And she wasn't a "problem", just a lively young girl like so many others.  Who doesn't argue with the parents now and then?  Lol

No, I'm definitely not saying that this is the cause.  Just that it was at that point that I started to notice a lack of understanding on his part,  an inability to accept others behaviour/personalities/opinions.

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4 minutes ago, dias said:

Have you posted again on ENA a few years back? Are you British originally? Trying to understand the dynamics....

Yes, I'm British and I have posted on one or two groups in the past but when I was googling today, the name of this one didn't ring any bells.  What made me sound familiar?  I started as a new member today so how can I find any past posts I might have made?  I'd actually be really interested to see when and what I wrote. (If it was me back then!)

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So maybe he just doesn't like people standing up to him. Tough luck! So he got in a snit ten years ago because his kid daughter argued with him.

I find this an odd turn of phrase to describe the early years of married life

"things were pretty calm"

Does that simply mean he wasn't grumpy then?  So what kind of husband was he?

It's OK Meg. I don't think you were on here before. We get posters from all walks of life, from various regions and backgrounds. 

Anyhow, your thread is called:

"Divorce after over 30 years of marriage?"

What do you think, Meg?

 

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1 minute ago, Meg1969 said:

Yes, I'm British and I have posted on one or two groups in the past but when I was googling today, the name of this one didn't ring any bells.  What made me sound familiar?  I started as a new member today so how can I find any past posts I might have made?  I'd actually be really interested to see when and what I wrote. (If it was me back then!)

Lol I don't think I can find it. It was 3-4 years ago, quite similar story actually, this is why it conjured up in my mind. 

Well, yeah, you can't change a grumpy old Greek not even with all the therapy in the world lol*. What you do is to ignore him when he is negative which is in fact very difficult to do when you are with somebody all the time. Negativity brings the quality of life down, it is true. Try to spend enough time without him outside of the house (friends, hobbies, work etc) 

The other option is divorce. 

*Coming from a 29 years old Greek living in the UK lol

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OP, you come across as the glass is half full, you always choose to see the positives and prefer to be happy and easy going kind of a person.

What you are failing to understand is that you are projecting YOUR personality to your husband who is different from you. 

You try to cheer him and lighten things up because that's what YOU would need and want if you were feeling down. You've got to stop that and instead, show him some sympathy.

When he whines about Bob, the cousin, being a jerk who didn't pay enough attention, nod and validate your husband's feelings. When you are trying to excuse cousin Bob, you are invalidating your husband and how he feels and that's never going going to help things. When you validate his feelings (keep in mind that feelings are just that, feelings, they aren't right or wrong, just how he feels) you may find that he calms down quickly and you return to a peaceful environment faster. That will benefit both of you.

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7 hours ago, Meg1969 said:

 I feel so sad when I think that I'll have to listen to them for the rest of my life.  It's mainly about (although not limited to) family members.  For instance, whenever we go to a family gathering there will ALWAYS be someone there that he has to moan about to me afterwards.  He can NEVER just go somewhere, enjoy the company and afterwards say how nice it was to see everyone again.  I'd say that he has complaints/reasons to moan about 90% of all our family members. 

I don't think it is just about jerky cousin "Bob".  Lol. 

He sounds like a right misery-guts. Yes, you could just ignore him, but that would probably make him worse and he'd start saying you are against him too, like all the other family members. 

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15 minutes ago, LaHermes said:

I don't think it is just about jerky cousin "Bob".  Lol. 

He sounds like a right misery-guts. Yes, you could just ignore him, but that would probably make him worse and he'd start saying you are against him too, like all the other family members. 

My growing impression is that they've both become entrenched in their respective personalities.

OP just wants to be happy and see the positive. Her hubs wants to be upset about whoever hurt his feelings. Neither of them can see past that.

The reason I'm telling the OP to step back from her stand and show some sympathy is because she is the one who is here asking for some solutions. The solution for her is both obvious and difficult to see and master given her own personality. Step back, nod, show sympathy. See what happens over time.

Emphasis on over time. Changing behaviors is not instant, so if she changes how she responds, she will need to be patient and wait on hubs to catch on and start to trust her response. It will take some time and some mistakes will be made on both sides.

I am actually speaking from experience. I have dealt with negative Debbie Downers all my life in my extended fam so I've learned at a very young age that if you try to cheer them up or justify the situation against their feelings, you'll just upset them more. If you just sympathize with them without taking up their emotional burdens personally, they feel balanced out and happier and stop whining. They really do just want validation and once they get it, they are over it. So yes, cousin Bob is an ahole....nod like an owl and echo....yes indeed....sorry you feel that way....horrible Bob.... He feels validated and topic changes. Takes practice though.....

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5 minutes ago, DancingFool said:

 They really do just want validation and once they get it, they are over it. So yes, cousin Bob is an ahole....nod like an owl and echo....yes indeed....sorry you feel that way....horrible Bob.... He feels validated and topic changes. Takes practice though.....

Quite a clever sales person you are!

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1 hour ago, Meg1969 said:

Our daughter is more spirited and there were constant arguments between her and her dad.  

It seems almost like you two enjoy the bickering and taking opposite sides in just about every issue. He's this/but I'm that is a persistent theme. 

Now that you are empty nesters this has simply shifted to new topics to play who's right/who's wrong games.

At every turn, you oppose him. His cousin is right, he's not, etc., etc., etc.

He has an overt sort of hostility and you hide behind a smiling "rosy glasses' hostility.

Read up on "passive aggressive". You both seem to have a lot of that going on. 

Maybe it's the lubricant that keeps this rusty wheel going is throwing saccharine barbs or overt whining, respectively?

 

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Bless your patience DF! I have always given the Debbie Downers a wide berth. And well they know it. Heh heh.

So they stop the "downer" vibe as they see me approach. Amazing isn't it? lol. Downers are their own worst enemies. 

I do get asked : "Does nothing ever faze you".  Well, I am not supernatural, so yes sometimes things do. The trick is that I don't make others' life a misery in such cases.

I know a few Debbie Downers too.  I rang one the other day as I felt I should. You know. Me trying to be charitable. lol.

How are you?  Not so great is the reply, and a litany of disasters, perceived disasters and future disasters follows.  The individual in question is as fit as a fiddle, but nonetheless the world is falling in around him/her.

So,I listen a while and then suddenly find that my doorbell has rung! lol

Sorry, the carpenter has just arrived. To do the new floor (not true).

And a whine from the other end of phone:

"New floors are SO expensive".

You get the picture.

I'm a real sweet kitten, but geeze, we all have problems. So why give the chronically grumpy a pass. I ask. 

 

 

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5 minutes ago, LaHermes said:

Does that simply mean he wasn't grumpy then?  So what kind of husband was he?

No, I don't think he was grumpy then.  He's never been a fun loving sort of person, not talkative at all but he was always quite kind and caring. Hard-working (still is) and always there with the kids etc.  Steady and dependable. I was quite shy and loved having someone who I knew would take care of me. I'm by no means saying that he's been a bad husband. But maybe, as I've got older, I want someone who is more of an emotional companion, rather than just a provider.  Maybe it's just me who's changed.  

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LOL Dias. If I'd said the lingerie lady was at the door to offer me a new line in the best available, I am sure I would have heard:

"Isn't underwear so expensive these days!" This of course spurs me on to reply: "Oh yes, The Italian stuff is extremely expensive". 

You can't win with these people. LOL. 

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5 minutes ago, Meg1969 said:

He's never been a fun loving sort of person, not talkative at all but he was always quite kind and caring. Hard-working (still is) and always there with the kids etc.  Steady and dependable. I was quite shy and loved having someone who I knew would take care of me. I'm by no means saying that he's been a bad husband. But maybe, as I've got older, I want someone who is more of an emotional companion, rather than just a provider.  Maybe it's just me who's changed.  

Bless your heart, Meg. He is lucky to have you. 

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25 minutes ago, Wiseman2 said:

Now that you are empty nesters this has simply shifted to new topics to play who's right/who's wrong games.

Who said anyone was right or wrong in this? I'm pretty sure I didn't say that.  Obviously, I'm telling the story from my perspective and I only wish my husband would come to therapy so that I could hear things from his.  But he won't, and whenever I ask him how he feels about our marriage he says 'It's fine.  As far as I'm concerned, I don't see that there's anything that needs to change, apart from perhaps taking your mother out of the picture'. 

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We do change as we get older and our expectations change. When we are no longer busy raising kids what we have is our spouse. My husband isn’t much of a talker either but we both love to explore new places and walks in the wilderness etc. My friends are my big emotional outlet. My husband has never been big into emotions, my child neither. If I want an extensive yammer about feelings and emotions they are not my guy. Can I discuss a lot of other topics? Yes . Have him be my emotional crutch ? Nope unless it is a situation like a death or what have you. But my friends and other interests are where I lean more for the “ feelings” aspect of life . 

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54 minutes ago, DancingFool said:

My growing impression is that they've both become entrenched in their respective personalities.

OP just wants to be happy and see the positive. Her hubs wants to be upset about whoever hurt his feelings. Neither of them can see past that.

Unfortunately, this is probably very true.  

I read your idea a couple of times over.  It's an interesting solution but like you said, difficult to carry out.  I'll be the first to admit that I've contributed to our current mess and that as much as he has a habit of moaning, so too do I of moaning back at him for moaning. 

I'll bear your idea in mind though, thanks.

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27 minutes ago, Meg1969 said:

But he won't, and whenever I ask him how he feels about our marriage he says 'It's fine.  As far as I'm concerned, I don't see that there's anything that needs to change, apart from perhaps taking your mother out of the picture'. 

He'd need to pull himself together.  I think you said your mother was 81. She'll be out of the picture soon enough.  

Where are his parents in all this?

 

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