So much of the learning in here is done vicariously - by seeing how other people brought their ILIASM shitholes to resolution, the traps they fell in to, the traps they avoided, the tactics that worked, the tactics that didn't.
This deal of yours and your run of stories Brother shynjdude , is of inestimable value to the readership, in particular newbies, or those not too far into the process. There is much to learn from your ILIASM experience up to here. Some of the lessons are from stuff you DID do, and others from things you did NOT do. All very very valuable lessons for the wider membership.
Your exit might not be going in text-book fashion, but that only ADDS to its' value as you journal your process. We all tend to learn the most out of things that go wrong, more so than the things that go right.
Kudos for setting down your stories. Whether intended or not, it is of great value as a learning aid.
She gave me a list of things she wants me to agree to in the interim. I found them controlling and insulting, and told her so.
I told her I'll wait six months but I want to prepare during that time. She says that it is mean to ask her to cooperate in the interim because she needs to concentrate on getting better.
I predict there will be a string of “unexpected complications” that require more compromises from you. Life is full of suck; it’s not your responsibility to stand in the gap.
Telling you the obvious... press the point hard to agree to binding terms *now* as a condition of you sticking around as she “needs”. You have something she wants; it would be foolish to negotiate after she’s already gotten her value out of you.
Whether you then (after agreeing to terms) choose to start the process is up to you, and perhaps if she goes into full bitch mode at some point (though I’d suggest that starting the long timer is smart). Supporting her through the process is independent of resolving a screwed up relationship.
ETA: In fact, as one of your up-front conditions, you should not only agree on terms of assets and alimony, but require her to agree to an uncontested filing.
Last Edit: Jul 17, 2018 21:38:15 GMT -5 by DryCreek
Post by ironhamster on Jul 17, 2018 22:15:23 GMT -5
A STBX going into full bitch mode is a real concern. My stbx is rejecting an offer of the vehicle, the house, half the retirement, and off the hook for the kids' college, and 30% of my base pay ad infinitum, because her lawyer is feeding her a line that he can get her more.
Hell hath no fury like a money grubbing butt-hurt refuser.
"I told her I'll wait six months but I want to prepare during that time. She says that it is mean to ask her to cooperate in the interim because she needs to concentrate on getting better. Maybe - but she stayed up all night clearing out our old bedroom and she painted half of it today. "
Why? You can get out now and if you want support her through her surgery.
Meanwhile, her very actions indicate that she is in reasonably good shape. I could not clean out a room and paint half of it in a day. Yet, I am healthy! Your wife is playing yo.
The more you talk to her about the divorce, the more you give her an opportunity to gaslight you. Start the proceedings and have her turn to your lawyer if she has questions.
She is not your friend. She is doing everything possible to make things CONTINUE to work in her favor.
Are you in individual therapy? It could help you develop the assertiveness and self compassion to do what's necessary to end the nightmare you're living. Take care of yourself. That's what your wife is doing: focusing on her own interests.
I’m with NSM on this one... if your wife can clean out a room and paint half of it in a day, she is playing games with you regarding her illnesses. She’s clearly capable of a putting in a good day’s work.
Your first priority right now needs to be taking care of yourself. And if you’re feeling charitable, you can help her out too. Be true to who you are. Be as kind to her as you are able. But take care of YOU!
Last Edit: Jul 17, 2018 22:42:22 GMT -5 by catsloveme
Am I averse to looking like a jerk? Am I scared of pissing off this person who has controlled too much of my life, and who has more energy, more creativity, more ability to protect herself and more time than I do? Is she too good at making me feel bad (while claiming that I am doing the same to her?) Am I being manipulated?
Yes, yes and yes.
Officially, we are trying to cooperate on this split and she's on board, but in reality she is putting up roadblocks and derailing what I try to do. But it's subtle. I don't detect malice on her part but there is fear and self-protection and underlying anger. I'm still trying to be the nice guy, and she's trying to be even tempered. Every conversation is exhausting.
She gave me a list of things she wants me to agree to in the interim. I found them controlling and insulting, and told her so.
I told her I'll wait six months but I want to prepare during that time. She says that it is mean to ask her to cooperate in the interim because she needs to concentrate on getting better. Maybe - but she stayed up all night clearing out our old bedroom and she painted half of it today.
Left message for lawyer today to ask for strategies I can use to protect myself without starting a war; he didn't get back to me yet.
I'm so tired already and we haven't even started.
"Officially we are trying to cooperate".
Yet when she is "cooperating" it's because you are giving into her every request and demand. She only "cooperates" on your terms when they are ones that work for her.
I think instead of trying to figure out strategies to avoid a war, you need to shore up your reserves to get through the inevitable war because it's coming. She already said it will be a fight when it comes to alimony. Believe her. Even in her supposedly fragile medical state she is not just willing to fight but is planning on it.
Stop playing the nice guy. This is divorce. It is no longer marriage, where you need to try to make things work. The "beauty" of a divorce is that everyday things that used to be important to compromise on are no longer important. It is now about YOU and what works for you, not what works for "us". As baza says: "There is no 'us' " (if there ever was).
You know that the issue is that you just don't want to feel bad. But feeling bad is unavoidable (and she's going to be sure to point out every time you're "mean" whether it's true or not) so best to get yourself in a position where you are protected otherwise you will feel bad while going through the process AND you may allow yourself to be taken to the cleaners in order to avoid hurting her. She is not worried about hurting you.
I would reread flashjohn's last comment and perhaps also ironhamster's story because I think your wife may be similar to his, unfortunately.
You've recognized the issues and your fears. Now, work with your therapist to overcome those fears and take care of yourself as opposed to focusing on taking care of her.
Post by workingonit on Jul 18, 2018 5:04:42 GMT -5
I agree with choosinghappy . Do whatever you need to do to free yourself from this pattern of taking care of her and aquiescing to her emotionally. I promise you these surgeries will not lead to a miraculous improvement. They may eventually help but her health concerns have become the center of her life. That will not change. She will move on to the next cure or the next cause. How long you stay hooked in her story is up to you.
I am talking tough to you yet needing this advice myself! It is really hard to hurt them. I have built an 18 year marriage around taking care of him! I know he has not lived up to it blah blah blah. But it is ingrained in me to be careful of his feelings. I get now why this is part of our SM deal and I truly have and continue to pull myself out of the pattern. But I have not said 'I want to divorce' which will be a game changer. I truly hate hurting him so I understand!
But you have taken the leap. The time is now for extracting yourself from the tangled web of this relationship. I like nice neutral statements like "Oh that sounds hard for you." That puts things on her. Don't offer help. Notice when your instinct is to shut up or take responsibility for something that is not yours. Stand your ground.
And get that legal stuff written up now before she gets her anger and resentment channeled through her powerful manipulating brain!
Post by northstarmom on Jul 18, 2018 9:35:16 GMT -5
Stop talking to your wife about the divorce. Don't come home until late if evenings are when she approaches you with her demands. Stay out all day on weekends. Hide out in bookstores or wherever you can go and be away from her. The less you allow yourself to be around her, the fewer chances of succumbing to her manipulations. If she asks you to make a concession say, "I have to think about it" and then go to your room and close the door.
Realize, too, that you don't have to follow through with any of the things that you have agreed to already. It's very likely that what you've agreed to puts you at a disadvantage and goes against what you really want. After you engage your lawyer, you can follow your lawyer's advice. The divorce settlement will be based on what you, your lawyer, and your wife agree to, not promises you make now under duress. Talk in depth with your lawyer and your therapist before agreeing to the divorce settlement.
The fact that she's painting a room although she claims to be ill and you think you have agreed that you're heading for divorce indicates that not only is she not as ill as she thinks, but she either doesn't think a divorce is coming or she expects to get the house. Would she really be able to afford the house on what's likely to be a settlement? She may already be putting plans in place to get an unfair settlement. She probably fully expects to since throughout your marriage, you've given into her ridiculous demands.
I strongly suggest that you follow someone's excellent suggestion and read, "No More Mr. Nice Guy." It seems to be speaking directly to you and to the many men here who think that the road to marital happiness is focusing completely on their spouse's needs and ignoring their own. (Women here do this, too, and at least part of the book may speak to them so it might be worth it for women to check out, too while ignoring parts that don't apply to women."
Here's what the book's site says:
Here's what the book's site says:
"A Nice Guy’s primary goal is to make other people happy.
Nice Guys are dependent on external validation and avoid conflict like the plague.
Nice Guys are guided by the following three “covert contracts:
If I am a good guy, then everyone will love me and like me (and people I desire will desire me).
If I meet other people’s needs without them having to ask, then they will meet my needs without me having to ask.
If I do everything right, then I will have a smooth, problem-free life.
These covert contracts operate at an unconscious level. They don’t work for a number of reasons, but Nice Guys are convinced they should.
Because most Nice Guys believe they have kept their side of the contract, they often feel helpless and resentful when other people (and the world) don’t keep their side of the contract.
Are YOU A Nice Guy? Who is a Nice Guy? He is the relative who lets his wife run the show.
He is the friend who will do anything for anybody, but whose own life seems to be in shambles.
He is the guy who frustrates his wife because he is so afraid of conflict that nothing ever gets resolved.
He is the boss who tells one person what they want to hear, then reverses himself to please someone else.
He is the man who lets people walk all over him because he doesn't want to rock the boat.
He is the dependable guy at work who will never say “no,” but would never tell anyone if they were imposing on him.
He is the man whose life seems so under control, until BOOM, one day he does something to destroy it all.
Characteristics of Nice Guys Nice guys seek the approval of others.
Nice guys try to hide their perceived flaws and mistakes.
Nice guys put other people's needs and wants before their own.
Nice guys sacrifice their personal power and often play the role of a victim.
Nice guys tend to be disconnected from other men and from their own masculine energy.
Nice guys co-create relationships that are less than satisfying.
Nice guys create situations in which they do not have very much good sex."
Post by greatcoastal on Jul 18, 2018 13:55:05 GMT -5
These are the times when you will be getting the most dollar out of your attorney. What used to be everyday household ,cost of living, maintenance, healthcare, travel food, etc...are all now manipulation tools. My ex was more than willing to see me easily continue to pay for half of things (during the divorce) that were not coming back to me after the divorce.
No need for details, instead your attorney knows all of them from past experiences. You need to document them, and be implementing and heeding the advice you will eventually pay for.
Fish with stink bait ,and you catch bottom feeders. I smell your STBX doing that to you. Running up as many "cost of living expenses" now so your Lifetime alimony will remain as high as possible.
On a side note. My MIL had every ailment known to mankind! Allergies galore! , she wore a neck brace constantly, over medicated, under medicated, a cane, a walker, couldn't drive, chiropractors, physicians, specialists, physical therapy, massages, spas,etc... Shortly after her and my FIL broke up ,the house was sold and she moved in alone in a 55+ over retirement village...guess who no longer needs a walker, a cane, can drive, etc...?
Still negotiating how to navigate the next few months. Both wife and I are on edge and both trying not to upset the other. Neither of us want the war, yet.
I know that I have changed the dynamics in our conversations and she definitely admires me more for being more forthright and sticking to my guns. Her talking points seem honest, or at least she believes them. She knows that if she pisses me off I'll file now. She's making noises that if I do she'll make sure we both waste a lot of time and money but she's bluffing because this is what frightens her now.
I spoke to my lawyer and he helped me with some specific concerns. Didn't retain him yet but he's been helpful.
Post by northstarmom on Jul 19, 2018 11:37:52 GMT -5
Have you had consultations with more than one lawyer? They differ in experiences and opinions. It also can be wise to take advantage of the best lawyer's free consultations because if you've seen them, your wife won't be able to retain them or get consultations from them.
worksforme2: hey nancyb, how are things perkolating with the older gentleman you spoke of a while back?
Jul 28, 2018 18:25:32 GMT -5
nancyb: worksforme2: Relationship died when we had a difference in opinion regarding UFO's and extraterrestrial beings. LOL I weighed in on the nay side and he believed they walk amongst us.
Jul 30, 2018 5:51:07 GMT -5
bc: I can’t stop laughing...go ahead, micromanage and analyze that marriage and see what she will do for you.
Jul 30, 2018 8:17:58 GMT -5
Dan: I think I'd have to see how good a new girlfriend was in the sack before I crossed her off the list -- or kicked her out of bed -- for believing in UFOs. I guess that makes me... male!
Jul 30, 2018 21:25:05 GMT -5
solodriver: It's been so long for me, I might see UFOs my first time. lol
Jul 31, 2018 1:42:47 GMT -5
beachguy: nancyb: He's right. It's all in the X Files, if you care to look.
Jul 31, 2018 3:45:13 GMT -5
nancyb: Dan: It was a tough decision, he was a good lover but the craziness ended things. Been dating since but nothing serious. I paint a lot.
Jul 31, 2018 5:57:00 GMT -5
petrushka: Thing is, someone being a fruit-loop about something like UFOs usually is not confined to one area; even if it is not immediately obvious. People who are nutty about one thing can go off at a tangent any time, I found (...out the hard way).
Jul 31, 2018 7:39:29 GMT -5
greatcoastal: nancyb: Sounds like you Identified a Fucking Object for what it truly is!
Jul 31, 2018 8:25:25 GMT -5
worksforme2: nancyb,...I am going to paint my living room soon as I can decide on the color.
Jul 31, 2018 19:15:08 GMT -5
worksforme2: When it comes to UFO's we always hear about "little green men", why are there never any "little green women"?
Aug 1, 2018 6:21:15 GMT -5
solodriver: I think I recall an episode of "Lost In Space where Dr. Smith was being chased by a green woman
Aug 1, 2018 21:29:17 GMT -5