fish, I think you have a good grasp of the possibilities here.
I’ve become a pessimist when it comes to sudden changes in behavior. While your wife may suddenly be enlightened that things are abnormal, that doesn’t translate to long-term changes in her behavior. And you’re very right that even if she can/will find a therapist quickly, progress takes years, not weeks, and is easy to stretch indefinitely.
Thanks everyone. This forum really is the biggest help ever!
greatcoastal thanks for the links. Reading some of those almost made me cry. I have known for a long time that my wife has BDP (rather than NPD), or at least most of the characteristics, although not a formal diagnosis just my observations. I thought that I knew a lot about it but some of the information was new to me: particularly the article on argument styles, I thought the author must have been watching us argue!! It explains why I come out of an argument wondering what just hit me with my head spinning. And why we never seem to actually discuss the issue she originally brought up, but everything else she is angry with me about spanning the last 20 years..... again!
DryCreek yes when I have mentioned divorce in the past she suddenly got interested in sex, once or twice maximum just to make me change my mind. It is a predictable pattern. She has now totally and completely lost interest in sex so it's a promise to see a therapist. Realistically it is just a stalling tactic and nothing else.
Our eldest cat has got really ill over the last few days and I think she is going to die very soon, she is 18 so she is allowed to call it a day. A bit of a break from thinking about marriage issues until she says goodbye to us.
I believe this is another delay tactic for your wife. I wonder how she would react if you stuck to your guns and told her that her attempts at seeking therapy were too little, too late?
Here's my guess from my own experience ,and reading of 100's of others like mine, she will then lawyer up, move money, and manipulate the entire family against you. She will play "the victim card" to the max.
It's all about power , control and avoiding the truth.
Could very well be. But she wouldn’t go anywhere near a psychologist, psychiatrist, or individual therapist, even when advised to do so by a marriage counselor. In 2012. And again in 2019. So I doubt she’ll ever be diagnosed.
fish, my late wife was mentally ill, although her diagnosis was schizo-affective, not BPD. Basically, she had elements of schizophrenia and bipolar. After our son was born, she was paranoid about getting pregnant again. Our sex life died, even though I got a vasectomy. She also kept our son under her control, not letting him play sports or go too far alone. We should have divorced, but that would have left one or both of us in poverty. I live in the USA where there is no NHS. I could not afford two apartments on my salary and her disability. She eventually died I’d cancer and heart disease two years ago.
My son and I had an honest talk about how his mother would cope with this COVID-19 quarantine. My son confessed that he was glad she wasn’t around for this, as his life would be way more restrictive. I confessed that I would give anything to have her alive but be divorced from her. Being married to her was stressful, but I miss talking to her about our son. No matter what, we always had our son that we brought into the world together.
Since her death, he has played three sports, learned to ride a bike, and got a driver’s license. He also has friends whose parents are divorced but co-parent very well. I remember watching his homecoming date posing with her divorced parents as the father’s second wife took a picture of all three of them. It was smiles all around.
I am still dealing with my wife’s mental illness along with her death. She was very sweet and loving, but the paranoia and the self-centered behavior made both my son and I very resentful of her. We both miss her, but life is better for us both of us now that she’s not with us. I’m in a steady healthy relationship now.
I share my story to point out that divorce is not the same as death, and staying married to someone with a serious mental illness drains both you and your children. The resentment builds until it poisons your entire life.
I have to say, the concept of "dating" while married sounds... odd.
To me, "dates" are activities meant to test a relationship for the plausibility of deeper involvement. I never saw dating as a permanent lifestyle, but rather a sort of way station on a journey to marriage, the "Final Destination" where I would find a welcoming family, a supportive family, and a home that both benefited from economies of scale and provided comfortable, unlimited sexual activity.
What fools we mortals be. 🙄😱🤦♀️
This whole journey toward a destination must be exactly why I have zero appetite for “dating” right now, or for the foreseeable future... 🤢
Dating while married is also composed of "activities meant to test a relationship for the plausibility of deeper involvement." It, too, is "a way station on a journey to marriage, ... a welcoming, supportive family, and a home that both benefited from economies of scale and provided comfortable, unlimited sexual activity."
I lack the unlimited sex. Dating would have gotten me to that "Final Destination". It just so happens the welcoming family, I already had and might not have been with the ladies I date. (though in the case of polyamory, it might mean merged welcoming supportive families) Not dating when unhappily married is an unfinished journey and your travelling companion wants to stay put. You suggest going on, taking pictures and coming back, but they say you mustn't go see what you originally set out for because.... well, the reasons vary.
As for you Padgemi, I've plans to date if my marriage ends (no time soon, that I can see, happy to say). I'll be very clear that any future marriage will be open. We might never see anyone else, but the option is always there. Pre-nup probably mandatory. Does she still want a ring? I might say Yes.
Fish isn't sure he wants an open marriage, he says. Strikes me that this recent reset can have a time limit. If he can (platonically) date a month from now, and date non-platonically three months from now, perhaps he can agree to the reset attempt. Her reaction may tell him volumes. She should be willing to offer an answer to him other than indefinite faith. If not, the promises ring hollow. She should not resist giving herself incentives to make earnest effort unless her offer isn't sincere.
If he knows there's light at the end of the tunnel and sexlessness need not be part of his family life, perhaps seeing relatives for holidays isn't objectionable at all. That sex and family must be joined is the ideal, but sex outside marriage may be better than divorce which in turn appears to be better than sexlessness in Fish's case. As soon as I started dating, my wife and I got along so much better. The resentment of her controlling my sexuality was toxic. Turns out, she reset pretty damn well, thanks to therapy. (Stay tuned a year from now...)
We buried our cat yesterday. Life has been all about the cat for the last week since she was so unwell, and talk of divorce dried up. It's my 2 week summer holiday in one week from now so I thought we might as well have a nice family holiday and I have booked up a lovely camp site for us to go to for a week of that, and my mother has invited herself down for the other week. I just have to make the most of it and enjoy family life as it is for the next few weeks.
Also my youngest daughter has been very low for the last year and now isn't eating properly, I'm sure it's our fault, living with parents who don't get on must have had some effect. Our doctor referred her and she is suddenly having assessments at the hospital and is under the eating disorders team. It is bringing us closer though, and making us talk. I have to think very carefully about what is best for her.
So life has conspired to put everything on hold again. Pushing for a divorce would have ruined everyone's summer so I don't really have an option right now.
To be honest I feel completely lost now, and a bit upset about losing our cat. I thought that I had finally got the momentum going, crossed the bridge and knew where my life was going but that's all on hold now, and I'm not sure of anything again. it's going to be difficult to get any momentum going again after the holiday.
fish. I’m so sorry about the loss of your cat. I know first hand how difficult it is losing a beloved pet- especially when it seems everything around you is falling apart. I learned that it’s never a good time to make those hard decisions and there will always be good reasons to keep the status quo. A therapist helped me focus on making the best decision for me. I hope you enjoy your Holiday. We all need a break sometimes. But I also hope you don’t stay in that status quo for long. You only have one life to live- you should live it well.
Post by saarinista on Jun 27, 2020 15:02:58 GMT -5
fish I had an eating disorder in my teens too. Usually they are an attempt to assert control over a seemingly uncontrollable environment, like a miserable home life. My parents fought a lot, and I was in the middle. It's no fun. Staying for the kids is overrated, to a degree.
Please forgive any typos or poor sentence structure. As I often say, you can have it perfect or you can have it now. Here, I choose now.
Thanks again. Talking on here really is very helpful.
My daughter has eaten a few full meals in the last few days (ate a whole homemade pizza with dough balls, although I have to say my pizza dough is getting rather good with practice!) She has an assessment with a psychiatrist at the end of next week, at least I will be there as I missed her other appointments due to work. I hope the subject of her parents relationship comes up although that could use up the whole assessment, but suspect they may not be that interested, although I think it is 99% of the problem. I used to be able to refer for family therapy many years ago and the therapists always told me they hardly spoke to the child, it was always the parents issues they looked for, sort that out and the child will be happy.
saarinista I'm sorry to hear that you had an eating disorder. Do you have any advice on how to handle my own daughter?
I am struggling. I really don't like being at home with my wife right now everything she does irritates me beyond belief and 2 weeks off work is going to be difficult, particularly with my mother staying for half of it. I am also feeling very sexually frustrated and think I might explode soon.
This the "Shoutbox" -- basically a site-wide, group chat. (It's only visible to members.)
worksforme2: Since our esteemed governor has declared a state of emergency here in NC (a total of 12 cases so far) the hording of toilet paper has begun. Is diarrhea a part of covid 19? I see Lowes and Home Depot have quick install toilet retro fit bidets.
Mar 13, 2020 10:34:57 GMT -5
petrushka: I've no idea what it is with the toilet paper hoarding. I walked out of a supermarket yesterday and saw a woman with the jumbo sized trolley and some 4x 18 roll packs of toilet paper. Nuts. Completely nuts. Incidentally, a bidet is definitely the way to go
Mar 14, 2020 6:18:43 GMT -5
petrushka: Even her little 5 or 6 year old was questioning her purchase!
Mar 14, 2020 6:25:44 GMT -5
petrushka: One of my favourite quotes for the last 30 years: "don't ever look a sheep in the eyes, the intellectual vacuum may suck your brains out". Well, let's all drink to the sheeple! (besides, alcohol is a good disinfectant).
Mar 14, 2020 6:31:26 GMT -5
frednsa: so...............i'd like to tell her when she "attempts to placate me": have you ever been invited to a party where you knew for certain that you WEREN'T wanted ?
Mar 19, 2020 15:57:05 GMT -5
worksforme2: Former Miss Hawaii tests positive. Being the gallant lad that I am I have offered her the use of my guest bedroom to "shelter in place"..
Mar 23, 2020 20:34:21 GMT -5
worksforme2: Hey tamara68, there is a covid19 positive cat in Belgium, watch out for it.
Mar 30, 2020 14:05:56 GMT -5
tamara68: @worksforme I think I have to be more careful for all infected people. Most likely I already have Covid19
Apr 1, 2020 3:29:42 GMT -5
worksforme2: tamara68.....it's been a couple weeks since you posted you may have the covid19 virus. hopefully you are feeling better and are on your way to renewed health
Apr 11, 2020 5:31:38 GMT -5
tamara68: @worksforme thanks, yes I am feeling better. How is it in the USA?
Apr 14, 2020 1:57:26 GMT -5
worksforme2: some better and some worse,..virus seems to be slowing down, but people are beginning to refuse to stay inside,...worst thing I see is Biden leading in the election poles,...but that could be fake news
Apr 20, 2020 16:56:22 GMT -5
mirrororchid: Politics? Is that what we want to happen here?
Apr 21, 2020 6:21:24 GMT -5
petrushka: Certainly not American style politics. Toxic echo chambers.
Apr 23, 2020 16:21:52 GMT -5
petrushka: However, I feel that sexual politics, including political moves that impact the relationships between gender (misogynist, misandrist, etc) definitely deserve room in this context.
Apr 23, 2020 16:22:59 GMT -5
fred: just calculated that i've spent somewhere near 19,000 days (& nights) as a "rejectee".AND that allows for 2,000+ days (& nights) on business travel apart from her. i've chosen to "stay" .....would never do that again, and can't as you see doing the math
May 15, 2020 18:01:15 GMT -5
worksforme2: 19000 days and nights,....damn dude, that's 52 yrs.
Jun 17, 2020 9:19:10 GMT -5
fred: you're a little short works - was thinking this AM, there has NEVER been a day when she indicated desire for me physically (other than for heavy lifting or finance)........LOL...........earlier, i had enough libido for both of us, now i'm left with guilt
Jun 20, 2020 13:11:12 GMT -5
fred: over imposing myself on her rather than simply leaving .....DAMN LOVE ANYWAY !
Jun 20, 2020 13:12:12 GMT -5
mesulina: update everyone, still has not happened. I have now come to accept that I will live with out. It is just different now.
Jun 29, 2020 19:32:31 GMT -5
worksforme2: Sorry mesulina,... but on the positive side you did stock up on toys a short time back,..now might be the time to go for the gusto
Jun 30, 2020 17:42:54 GMT -5