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Owning My Participation in the Demise of Our Marriage


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Love those aha moments!  A very big part of my self awareness/insight related to my marriage is remembering humility.  It's important to own your part in things, important to stop before saying or doing something that might be hurtful (or spread negativity -we have enough of that given the pandemic, etc!!), and important to be aware that even though you are hangry or tired or whatever it's not your partner's fault.  Humility doesn't mean not being a confident person - it can coexist.  Sometimes it's hard.

Thanks for sharing!

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Batya33, yes^^^

I guess we just don't see things as they are until we are ready.  In my case I needed a guide.

Perhaps... I put him in charge of *my* happiness and then blamed him for not doing a great job.  I still cannot believe the depth of insight I gained in 3 hours spread over 3 days.  Now I know, everything I need is inside of me right now, I'm whole as I am.  I don't need to look outward.  Once I can sit with my whole self for a while, I'll be ready to figure out what that means for me in the romance department.  For the moment I'm just going to connect/reconnect with my fellow goddesses, enjoy being fully present in life/showing up for myself, making new friends, working, dancing, doing yoga, embracing life to the fullest.

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I'd like to apologize to my ex-husband for my part, but I doubt after over 20 years he'd want to hear from me lol.

He's a good man and I could have been a much better wife to him.  However, it doesn't change the fact that we absolutely did not belong together.  But still, I could have handled things differently.

I do sometimes imagine that he and I could have a conversation someday.  Not about our marriage because that's long in the past, but just so we could go into our end years without the pain that the divorce caused both of us (even though I was the one who wanted it) being the last thing we ever talked about.  I haven't seen him or spoken to him since 2013 (wow, that's a long time ago) when our son graduated college.

I'm glad you're at peace and can move forward happily.

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1 hour ago, boltnrun said:

I'd like to apologize to my ex-husband for my part, but I doubt after over 20 years he'd want to hear from me lol.

Boltnrun, i'm learning lately it's never too late to start over/be reborn.  And a kind word will not be misplaced when it's sent in the right mindset.  Love that you even considered it!

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41 minutes ago, spinstermanquee said:

Boltnrun, i'm learning lately it's never too late to start over/be reborn.  And a kind word will not be misplaced when it's sent in the right mindset.  Love that you even considered it!

Sometimes I think it is kinder to leave someone alone and give space.

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On 1/30/2022 at 3:30 PM, spinstermanquee said:

WOW.  Thanks for listening/reading.  I am on a healing path and I hope the epiphanies keep coming...

What a wonderful experience! When people suggest that we 'adopt self honesty' and 'take responsibility' it can sound punitive, but just the opposite has been true for me, as I see that is has been for you.

It's liberating to unlock a trap of my own making.

Blame is an unnecessary sentence of carrying weight into the future. It deprives one of the confidence that comes with learning from mistakes and trusting our better judgement as we move forward.

I've noticed a fairly common knee jerk reaction to impeding partings--with employers and coworkers, with parents before a teen leaves a household, with roommates before leaving a rental, with partners who are no longer compatible--and that's a reach to villainize the other in order to justify an ANGRY exit rather than a sad one.

Think of coworkers who have spent their last months or weeks at a job making themselves miserable in order to build a 'case' for leaving with a chip instead of with gratitude.

Relationships often diverge. This doesn't mean that there 'must' be a villain in order to walk away. It's possible to transform relationships into a different context, or to leave them in our rear view mirror without contempt as our driver. 

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catfeeder,

i feel so blessed right now.  We still talk 3x week (we have a common furbaby that is undisputably his) and connect over family stuff, but it's so liberating to be free of blame, shame, or games. 

After I owned my part in the deterioration of our relationship and he did too, it was like a transformation.  All of a sudden, we are helping each other instead of fighting each other.

I *could* say I wish it happened 10 years back when we went stale, but hey you are ready when you're ready and not a minute sooner.

Thanks for the feedback and hope our community can keep helping others in any way, small or large

Edited by spinstermanquee
tweak on sentiment and thanks
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What a beautiful morning Spinster!

 

Thank you for your honesty, openness and insight! Can I ask how old are you and how long were you married? 
 

At 32 after nearly 15 years with my husband I am just starting to realise you can only push people so far - and take them for granted - before the bad starts to outweigh the good, no matter how good you are inbetween the “bad” parts. 
 

I have never been to therapy for anything - is this your first time? I notice behaviours in myself that affect our marriage for the negative. I am married to just the most amazing guy and often swing from feeling like I don’t deserve him to then weirdly feeling like he doesn’t deserve me! It is a bizarre emotional rollercoaster and I’m tired of it and want to get off. I know how lucky I am and I know we are still at the beginning in the grand scheme of things and can nip these issues (which are mostly mine truth me told) in the bud before it is too late and I have really took advantage of his undying and faithful love and devotion for me.

 

I look to my in-laws and imagine they could also benefit from some of the breakthroughs you have had. 
 

As Batya mentioned which is SO true, humility goes along way. I wish I could practice this. Leaving your ego at the door is hard, especially if you slug around a pretty big, stubborn one 🥲 I think, would I want to marry me? No. Therefore I need to change and work on myself. My husband deserves better and I know in return things will start turning for the positive.

 

Can I ask where did you begin? It feels like a huge task, very daunting. I have been so stuck in my ways my whole life as far as I can remember, probably emotional and stubborn in the womb!

 

Anyway, so fab to hear such great news! Congratulations and enjoy your new relationship dynamics!

 

Always was a sucker for a happy ending!

 

Lo x

Edited by mylolita
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On 1/30/2022 at 3:30 PM, spinstermanquee said:

My big takeaway is owning your own sh*t in your relationships is primary (even though it took a third party draw my attention to who I was being, it doesn't matter in the end because I took that information and acted on it).

WOW.  Thanks for listening/reading.  I am on a healing path and I hope the epiphanies keep coming...

I commend you spinstermanquee.  Amazing that you have courage to confront this head on and to handle it the way you did.  Respect!
Can you please tell this to my ex wife?  The pain I suffered in my divorce wasn't the infidelity, it was the lies and lack or remorse that crushed me.  We have a good co-parenting relationship, but I have 0 respect for her and can't believe I was married to a person like this. 

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On 2/9/2022 at 3:28 AM, mylolita said:

Thank you for your honesty, openness and insight! Can I ask how old are you and how long were you married? 

Can I ask where did you begin? It feels like a huge task, very daunting. I have been so stuck in my ways my whole life as far as I can remember, probably emotional and stubborn in the womb!

mylolita, I am almost 60.  I met my husband almost 40 years ago, we've been married for 25 and the divorce is in process now.

This new therapist I am seeing has me on a lightning-fast track to self awareness through meditation, breathing exercises, and a little bit of talk therapy.

I stayed so long (I can only say this since my session yesterday, lol) because safety was the one thing I was denied in childhood.  It was a toxic environment from age 5 to 14, when I ran away from home for the final time.

How did I start onto my healing path?  One of my Chinese friends said one day that nothing ever changes until there's an accident.

We were in the middle of selling our home and he went nuts and screamed at me, which shocked me out of my complacency.  I realized that our marriage was dead and I wanted to end us hurting each other over and over.  Initially, I blamed him and built up a catalog of misdeeds and mailed it to him.

Once I started with the new therapist, however, she led me in a surprising direction and my "aha" moments were coming fast and furious.  Hence the apologies and amends to husband...

 

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9 hours ago, Betterwithout said:

Can you please tell this to my ex wife?  The pain I suffered in my divorce wasn't the infidelity, it was the lies and lack or remorse that crushed me... can't believe I was married to a person like this. 

We are all ready when we are and not a minute sooner.  I've always been the kind of person that owns their stuff, i just needed someone to point out my folly (NOT the STBXH, I'm sure that would have resulted in an argument)!

It's tempting and easy, as catfeeder ^^^ pointed out above, to craft the narrative with the other party as the villain.  But once therapist gave me the ol' "come to Jesus" and I opened my eyes to my role in the matter, it was SO FREEING!

I cried and cried on the way to see him to apologize - but not with sorrow, with release of blame and guilt, with *finally* understanding and a full heart.  I'm even crying a little happy cry now because it's beautiful when you can forgive YOURSELF and let bygones be bygones.

Betterwithout, she may never realize her role in the demise of your marriage.  But you can acknowledge yours 🙂  Don't have to do it with her either!  Let her swim in the sea of her own making.  God bless and thanks for commenting on my post!

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2 hours ago, spinstermanquee said:

Updating to say, in the course of this new therapy I have discovered so many channels in which I was deficient in my marriage.  I have done my best to own my sh*t, make amends, and we are in a pretty good place. 

If this is too personal then of course don't feel you need to answer 🙂, but in what ways were you, "deficient," in your marriage?  I'm truly interested in what you can, "see," now that you couldn't then.

It is beyond annoying to me that we often can't, "see," what things we're doing horribly wrong into years after the fact.  So this will probably help people (myself for sure!) ❤️  Thank you!

Edited by maritalbliss86
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12 hours ago, maritalbliss86 said:

If this is too personal then of course don't feel you need to answer 🙂, but in what ways were you, "deficient," in your marriage?  I'm truly interested in what you can, "see," now that you couldn't then.

maritalbliss86, over the years i emasculated my husband in several ways.  I did not understand how my (overly masculine) energy dissipated his and robbed him of chances to be a loving husband.  Instead of letting him drive I grabbed the wheel away from him and criticized his driving abilities (in several arenas, like parenting, work, finance).  (short answer:  I was a ball breaker)

Of course, it didn't start out that way... but I guess after being together for some time my pathologies crept in as they are wont to do.  I went to talk therapy so many times to try and figure out what was wrong with me, with the marriage, and never got any solid answers.

What I am working on now is embracing my femininity, allowing myself to be vulnerable and soft.  Just because I was raised by wolves, doesn't mean I have to use the same old road map now, 50+ years later.  I'm not in a war zone any more, and I failed to act accordingly.

I hope that answered your question...

Edited by spinstermanquee
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What do you think you would have done if he'd grabbed the steering wheel back from you and said "You need to knock it off. I'm driving. If you don't like my driving you can find another way to get there"?

Would you have gotten upset? Or would you have respected him more?

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4 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

What do you think you would have done if he'd grabbed the steering wheel back from you and said "You need to knock it off. I'm driving. If you don't like my driving you can find another way to get there"?

Would you have gotten upset? Or would you have respected him more?

Good question!  I would have respected him more and probably stood down.  I didn't say the demise of the marriage was ALL on me, I'm just owning MY bits 😉

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1 hour ago, spinstermanquee said:

What I am working on now is embracing my femininity, allowing myself to be vulnerable and soft

How are you embracing it -what are you doing that reflects this embracing your femininity?  When do you allow yourself to be vulnerable and soft when in the past you would not have been?

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11 minutes ago, spinstermanquee said:

Good question!  I would have respected him more and probably stood down.  I didn't say the demise of the marriage was ALL on me, I'm just owning MY bits 😉

No, I get that. But oftentimes people will push as far as they're permitted. If the other person just lies down and lets them stomp all over them a lack of respect is the result. And with no respect, how can there be romantic love? And your husband may have thought appeasing you was the right thing to do, but that seldom works out well.

Relationships are complex. A dynamic that works for some would be a death knell for others. And many who think they want to be able to get their own way all the time are often surprised at how much they find themselves loving and respecting someone who stands up to them and says "Uh uh, nope, homie don't play that".

Edited by boltnrun
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13 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

How are you embracing it -what are you doing that reflects this embracing your femininity?  When do you allow yourself to be vulnerable and soft when in the past you would not have been?

Taking those baby steps 🙂  Firstly, I am focusing on being present more in my body and heart than my head.  I have lived from my head for so long, it's a huge undertaking!  I am starting to speak more softly and choose my words carefully.  My historical use of words was as weapons, all sharp edges and cutting humor.  Essentially, I am dialing down the sarcasm (tough cookie) and trying to express myself more kindly and lovingly.

Last weekend I told our daughter about our split (we both agreed I would tell our daughter and he would tell his parents).  I messaged her and we connected over a video chat.  I did some breathing exercises beforehand and put myself 100% in the moment.  I let the conversation flow from my heart and out of my mouth.  There was some leaking on both sides but it felt like we really connected.  In the past, I might have rehearsed a speech over and over and executed from my head.  This was authentic.

This may all be basic to some, but for me it's like finally unlocking a puzzle that's been driving me nuts for years!

Once again, thank you all for the input, suggestions, and caring.  I'm so happy to be a part of this community.

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How is it feminine to you to be more present in your body and heart than your head ? I love the action of choosing words more carefully (and tone - right ?).
 

For me personally I need concrete. And actions. I’ve been hearing the abstraction “be present in your (fill in the flavor of the moment ) for decades - my older sis did EST back in the 70s which then later became landmark- which a number of my friends latched onto  - but for me personally I only make changes through specific actions not an abstraction. Sometimes mantras help me for motivation or reinforcement. 

It sounds like what you’re learning about grabs you and motivates you !

I’m glad you agreed on how to give your daughter the news. I’m a fan of rehearsing when it’s a tough or sensitive subject and for me it still feels genuine.  Since I can be too chatty rehearsing helps rein that in. 

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This is all so interesting spinster! 
 

I can recognise some of my own traits in yourself - I also wrongly use words as weapons. Terribly, during arguments with my husband, I just go out of my way to find a particularity biting turn of the phrase and he often will stop me half way through and say, “Just listen to your language!” I know it sounds corny but he’s right. I am doing this well aware also!

 

We have been married 8 years and lived together for 15. We have three young children all under 4. I often find, as more pressure layers are applied, the bickering and not picking each other in a naggy way has started becoming a daily thing. He left for work and he text me and said, “Truce Lo, let’s not bicker, I love you” and we will agree and be cool for a few days but then old habits die hard!
 

What was the specific type of therapy you went for? It sounds like it has really opened your eyes and lifted a weight from your shoulders! I would love someone to give me the answers and be straight with me and tell me what’s what! I guess deep down only you can change you, as corny as that sounds?

 

Are you going to remain close friends? It sounds like you are both in such a lovely place at the moment. Do you think you would ever get back together?

 

Lo x

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