“It’s too bad that’s the way you see me sometimes…” in addition to a few other statements I noticed, were a way of reaching out to feel better about himself, as in he was reaching for compliments and to feel wanted.  I believe we all tend to do this passive-aggressive move from time to time, though it felt over the years that, as time went on, my attempts at complimenting him and showing him that he was wanted, felt like they became wasted efforts, as his self-confidence dwindled, while insecurities and pain turned into resentments and grew more frequent.  It was a frustrating thing for me, because even I knew deep down, now that I can reflect, I had my own insecurities that swelled to the surface and took on a form that I didn’t acknowledge or handle in a way that was healthy either, and included manipulation of some severe degrees.  I even manipulated his family in attempts to avoid certain conflicts and feelings of failure in regards to being able to have what I wanted in life.

At some point I became someone I didn’t want to be, and I felt like I was a caged animal, so I intentionally set about the wheels of motion that has led me to be where I am now.  I became selfish in many ways, yet in others, I actually was still loyal, and that is where so much of my pain resides, even now, when something triggers the memory or brings the anger I had been trying to release up to the surface again.  The few honest confessions from him the last few weeks, especially, has left me going from controlled rage of indignation, to holding onto a thread of hope that the man I thought was hidden deep within him would finally be able to shine on the world.

The first one that comes to mind is how he described one of his female friend’s ex, which in summary came down to this, “He was kind of a douche.  He couldn’t hold down a job and she was working to support him by working 2 jobs and finally she just couldn’t take it.”

He did notice my facial expression change a bit after I initially heard him say that someone was kind of a douche, since I am not used to hearing that phrase come from him, and then I heard the “why” the guy was a douche, which was the bit of the woman working 2 jobs, and she kept it up for 2 years, but she just couldn’t take it anymore.  I kept my composure and didn’t really say anything, which was a good thing, because I think things would have taken a turn for the worse if I said what was frantically running through my head upon soaking in what he was telling me.

“If you think he is a douche for that, then what do you think you are?  Do you realize I never once called you anything like that and yet you feel it’s something I need to get over and you avoid the reasons I have now been working 5 years holding down 2 jobs?  Oh, you think you get to give her a ‘you should never have to do that’ and emotionally, let alone physically, comfort her about her situation but continually refuse to truly apologize to me for doing the same thing?”

Bitter?  You bet your ass!  However, I chose to not be passive-aggressive or spiteful even though I wanted to very badly lash out at that moment and pass along the pain he just dealt to me back at him.  It was tough, but I did it, and I even confronted the pain a little bit later, trying to communicate that the statement stung, and tried to simply say that her situation, for that specific scenario, is eerily similar to what I went through and stuck through for 4 years before really standing my ground and becoming what was, and may still be, seen as even more reason to claim I was giving up and not trying.

I am not sure if he really understood that even though I feel pain about our situation and hearing about something similar to someone else, I wasn’t trying to bring up or hold onto the past, per se, but looking there to find the underlying reason of why hearing or discussing the facts brings about so much venom between us.  Looking at my initial reactions and how I tried to calmly discuss it a few minutes later, I was able to see that the reason I was hurt so much was the denial of individual and mutual realities, which has brought about resentments between the both of us.

For me, it was a door that was never closed because the core reason(s) we got into so much financial problems were never addressed so we could try to find a solution to the problem, not just cover it up.  I don’t like confrontation, though I knew even years before, that confronting things did not need to be an all out war, and if the perceptions were open enough, it could be seen as an understanding and finding a solution that was more of peace, than victor or loser.

I tried, I really did, though at a certain point, I stopped trying because I was trying to carry him along on moving forward and he was slowly losing the momentum to move forward, and he drug me back.

Ironically, he did that literally, as well as figuratively, when it came to me trying to help him sleep in bed as his sleep apnea was worsening as he continued to gain weight.  He would get upset with me for tying to wake him from sleeping in the living room on a chair, and it would sometimes take me an hour or more to roust him so he could lay down in bed instead of rocking forward and backward and his head fall back and forth almost in a whiplash like fashion.  I worried so much about his health, that his apnea would wake me up in the middle of the night, which became so frequent that I had to face reality for what it was, and we had no life insurance, one thing we cut back on prior to me getting a 2nd job and, the fact of the matter is, we kept the full load of cable and spent in a way we never should have.

I felt guilty for allowing the life insurance to be dropped, because his health was spiraling out of control, and it was a subject that he didn’t like about himself, which therefore was a land mine field if you dared to even tiptoe near it.  Talk of his weight, not even to ridicule, but to genuinely express concern, was met with disdain and anger.  Talk of his sleep and my manipulative tactics as well as directly confronting it was met with resentment for trying to control him.

I admit, I was trying to control him, though I thought it was what was best at the time, because I was concerned and didn’t want to see him suffer as it seemed like he was.  I manipulated him in many ways, tying every known method I could find, to try to take care of him and keep him from a fate I feared he was nearing every day.  It does not matter what my intentions were, because no matter the intention, it was not right of me to try to control him like that.

Even though I can look at it like that, it still brings me pain to know that he views me so negatively and feels I gave up or did not try hard enough, especially within the time frame he gave me, of at least the last 4 years.  I saw the last 6 years, especially, as trying harder than I ever did before, even though I did have my times of yes, giving up because I needed the break from sheer mental, physical and emotional exhaustion from trying to hold it all together and control things I couldn’t and shouldn’t have controlled.

At some point, yes, I said that if he was not willing to do the one thing I asked him to do to help us find solutions to problems that had been and continue to be the exact same problems wrapped up in different topics at times, but always the same core issues at the heart of it, by going to marriage/couple’s counseling with me to have someone unbiased helping us mediate and learn to communicate the difficult things instead of being so abusive to each other, then there really was no marriage and I wanted a divorce.

My asking and stating what my deal breaker was has never been done by manipulation and stated multiple times before I filed for divorce, even documented and saved electronically.  I tried…yet the fear and guilt of losing the one true thing I always wanted, a real family that stuck together, is what kept me in the habit for so long.  No matter how bad it got and how I didn’t want to be married to my husband any longer, I wanted the family unit together as much as I wanted to breathe, though as I let certain distractions in life to over take me, I began to realize that, in the silence, the reality was that I focused so much on saving my marriage and trying to cling to a family, that I didn’t pay attention to the fact that I was on a path of destroying it in some very unseen ways.

It was then that I knew I needed to change directions and focus on what the reality was, which all seemed to have really come to a head when our daughter was in the hospital for 5 days being evaluated for failure to thrive.  Those 5 days put my whole world on it’s side, and I knew, without any shred of doubt, that it was time for me to do some serious soul searching if I was going to give our children a healthier life than what I had.  I began my journey there, and it is hardly over yet, with even more to be learned as I continue to move forward from the past I let get out of control by trying to avoid it instead of dealing with it in a healthy way.

 

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For Tonight

June 5, 2012


For Tonight

For tonight,

I don’t want you to think,

I want you to feel…

I want you to feel me…

I want you to let me feel you…

And if you are able to,

I promise this will be

A night you will never forget

And one you won’t ever regret.

©Ami May 2012