Literally may be killing me. Why is walking out the damn door so hard?
Is your identity as Mr. Dallasgia's wife and his/your kids' mom all-consuming? March 2018 you introduced yourself as a homeschool family. That's going to sink some deep deep roots into the ground. How do you walk with your legs buried up to your thighs?
Home schooling is acknowledged by everyone as a commitment beyond many others one might suggest. It'll soak up most of your life, I would think. "Teacher" is a job, at home. "Mother" is a job at home. That'll dominate your life and form an impression of what you are. If you're no longer that, what are you?
The absence of identity is going to be anxiety provoking in almost anyone. Terrifying for some. It's not exclusive to marriage: part of the stress of getting laid off lies in this extraction of identity: "What am I if I don't work there? If I have no job?"
Some of the ladies that have walked away began by taking a step away, while holding on to the home.
The two examples that came immediately to mind were:
northstarmom who organically grew a life for herself in community theater, becoming an actress. Incidentally meeting a gent there which made her a woman with romantic prospects. While it may not have been her intent, this selection of alternative life activities and identity made it far easier to dislodge those elements that were of questionable value.
jerri announced to her husband she was taking a lover which gave her the identity of her boyfriends' partner. She embraced the role of the June Cleaver generous, nurturing wife, rather than her husband's lover, giving her a new, more achievable mission still in her home.
Dads Starting Over observes that wives get distressed when their fellas start working out at the gym and changing their bad habits. 'What's he doing? Is he leaving me? Why isn't he staying still? He's evolving. I didn't tell him to do that! What's this initiative crap, allofasudden?' Dysfunctional marriages are getting solved by these guys changing what they can. Themselves. It may help the marriage, but it's likely to improve their prospects if they break away too. They're building a sense of themselves that is not part of a "them". They are separating themselves, if not from their wives. This is likely very healthy for them and their marriages. Win-win.
Maybe you're on the way there yourself already. Just not far enough along yet and not enough awaits you to fill the void were you to leave tomorrow?
Or....not. Codependency is not in play. Someone else take a crack at it.
Post by angeleyes65 on Jan 24, 2022 8:49:29 GMT -5
@mirrorchild Your words are so true, I was a stay at home mom when things started going south. Building my own identity was part 1 of my exit plan. But it wasn't enough. I felt guilty about abandoning him. That was the hardest part for me. Even 4 years out. I am feeling guilty because he has covid and is alone. Where I have a live in boyfriend. The adult children are closer to me both emotionally and physically. When I got out I went to counseling to deal with the guilt and stress. If I had to do it all over again I would have went to counseling before I left.
Post by northstarmom on Jan 24, 2022 11:04:12 GMT -5
angeleyes: "If I had to do it all over again I would have went to counseling before I left."
Yes. That's what I did. I went to individual counseling for me because I was very unhappy. I wasn't in that counseling to try to fix my marriage, but to try to reclaim myself and to heal myself. In my individual counseling, I focused on myself: I didn't focus on trying to change my husband. I also went to joint counseling to try to fix my marriage. I ended up leaving joint counseling because my husband wasn't really participating. He'd routinely come late, for instance. Also, when we -- with the counselor's encouragement -- went on a weekend trip that I'd hope would rekindle our sex life -- for the first time in our decades-long marriage, as we drove to our destination, he trumped up a reason to give me the silent treatment for the rest of the trip. Of course, there was no romance at all. That was the last straw for me. When he revealed in our counseling session that he'd done that, I walked out and never returned. It was clear to me that the counseling was a waste of time.
I continued with individual counseling, and created a life that made me happy. It was built on my pursuing my own interests, and really loving myself. After about another 2 years, I ended the therapy because I'd achieved what I'd wanted. I didn't decide to divorce until a couple of years later. It was clear to me that the marriage was over and I'd rather live solo in reduced circumstances than remain with my husband. I returned to individual therapy so I had emotional support through the process, but while it was great to have the therapist help me think through things, I never had the angst that many have when they divorce. It ended up we both wanted to end the marriage: My husband had been so detached from me because he was trying to get me to divorce him! Anyway, due to the previous therapy and how I'd expanded my life so I was taking care of my needs and living a life that allowed me to pursue my interests and be my best self, I had no angst through the process. Also, both my husband and I wanted a fair divorce without revenge or other things that can make divorce difficult.
I cannot recommend more highly that it's important to get into individual counseling and to use that as a way of reclaiming yourself and rediscovering who you are -- whether or not you choose to stay married.
Post by greatcoastal on Jan 24, 2022 19:26:02 GMT -5
I too was a homeschooler, stay at home dad to 6 kids ( 3 adopted from China) and took care of my aging father in law. 20 yrs .of not being employed ( part time work at church and mowing lawns)
You're not walking OUT the door.
Think of it as walking THROUGH a door. Into a better place, for the whole family! A codependent does a lot of giving. That can be a wonderful, powerful personality trait if not misused by you and others. Sounds like its time to start taking? Putting yourself first for a change?
Just a word of caution from my own experience. My narcissistic ex turned my children against me. Convinced them that their father is " mad and angry" and " mom need us". That's all it took for me to not hear from them anymore.
Post by ironhamster on Jan 25, 2022 0:31:33 GMT -5
People are like the current of a river or the electrons flowing in an electronic circuit. They take the path of least resistance. Once the pain of staying outweighs the fear of leaving, you will find the path to happiness.
Post by worksforme2 on Nov 26, 2022 9:23:46 GMT -5
I have a cousin who lives in Michigan. Decades ago, his father-in-law had health issues beginning to really manifest themselves. The f-i-l was in his 70's at the time. My cousin thinking "how much longer cam he live"? invited him to move in. He lived for 17 more years. That is some real staying power.
worksforme2: Happy Birthday deleted,...where ever you are
Sept 25, 2023 9:44:03 GMT -5
mirrororchid: Just found out. My wife's therapist was nudging her to divorce me four years ago before she reset with me. It seems like the key ingredient to a reverse in a sexless marriage is a refuser that earnestly knows that celibacy in marriage is abnormal.
Sept 27, 2023 19:49:47 GMT -5