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Accepting, Letting Go, Open, and Being Myself

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  • #112760
    Shaun
    Participant

    I posted some time back about being in limbo when my wife moved out and I have discovered so much in that time that I just feel the need to share.

    I blamed her for putting me in relationship limbo, for refusing to work on the relationship, and for so many other things. I also resolved to live my life and find my happiness. I have learned so much. I found that she is extremely manipulative and verbally abusive – I had never recognized that while we were together, always blaming myself for her behavior. I found that I was very angry and suppressing that anger. I found that I was very codependent, accepting horrible behavior from her for fear that I would make her upset.

    So, today we are still separated and after I began setting boundaries with her and refusing her abuse, she has become extremely angry and wants to meet with a mediator (for divorce is implied). I think it is a great idea. I cannot reach terms with her without having explosive anger, verbal abuse, threats, and no-win questions bombarded on me.

    I have spent the past few days grieving and will continue to do so, but I also found myself through this mess and I am not a quitter. I know that my wife can change back to the loving, kind, gracious person she once was if she chooses. I have spent so much time trying to convince her to choose that, that I did not give her space to see her own situation. I am letting go of trying to convince her. I am letting go of attachment to the outcome or hope of reconciliation. I am letting go of the past. I am letting go of the idea of moving on, right now. I am accepting where we are and what I do know and letting go of trying to figure out what she wants. I will initiate the mediation while pursuing her in love. I will show her love and compassion no matter the outcome. I will show myself love and compassion no matter the outcome. I will protect myself and my daughter and be open to whatever may come and if a divorce is final, I will continue to love and forgive and live.

    Peace,

    Shaun

    #112765
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Shaun:

    Welcome back.

    Before reading your new thread I read your posts on the April thread. From that thread, it is obvious that your wife has been indeed verbally abusive. Unfortunately you mentioned there that she yelled at your daughter as well. This is very unfortunate for your daughter. It is also evident from your previous thread that your wife is not well emotionally and hasn’t been well for a while.

    Regarding your post above, you wrote: ” I know that my wife can change back to the loving, kind, gracious person she once was if she chooses”-

    I don’t think so. I don’t think she can make a simple choice to be “loving, kind, gracious” – I think she has serious issues that need attending to in competent psychotherapy.

    Regarding ” I will initiate the mediation while pursuing her in love. I will show her love and compassion no matter the outcome” I think that pursuing her love since April did not work for you- or for her- and time to let go of this aim.

    If your latest post is about Accepting and Letting Go- then let go of pursuing her love. You learned that ” I found that she is extremely manipulative and verbally abusive”- then don’t pursue the love of an extremely manipulative and verbally abusive woman. It is unwise.

    Congratulations for learning and resolving to let go- through your old thread and this one I see positive progress in you asserting yourself and moving away from doing anything and everything to appease her. More work to be done, is my input: integrate what you learn about her into your future behavior all the way.

    anita

    #112771
    Jane
    Participant

    I’m so sorry to hear your troubles but it sounds like your heart and head are in the right space now and the most important thing is to work on you. It sounds like a strong man and great father, one should be so lucky. I wish you strength and much happiness where ever your situation takes you.

    -Jane

    #112772
    Savannah
    Participant

    Hi Shaun,

    I found myself through your thread. Two of my exes were pretty verbally abusive – sometimes, physically (i.e. throwing things or being very close to my face and yelling). Strangely, I had a hard time to move on because I was always remembering how they were. I thought it was their choices as well. However, I realized how wrong I was. I was desperately hoping a change from them until I realized that I AM the changes I needed.To be honest with you, if someone can act, react and behave like that, it was probably a part of them. Deep down, perhaps. It seems like you are willing to constantly evolve and it is such a great quality that you have. Do yourself a favor and continue. Although, just like Anita said, let go of pursuing her love. Be the change in your life. Don’t wait for her to change or evolve because she needs help – I think about anger management therapy or something. You cannot do it for her and if she is not willing to see her own behavior, you’ll wait forever.

    I wish you all the best through this.

    Savannah

    #112947
    Shaun
    Participant

    All,

    Thank you so much for your kind words and advice.

    Anita, It is nice to hear from you again. I am not deluding myself that she can just choose to be different and be different without a lot of work. She will likely need a lot of therapy and possibly medication, but the first step is a choice, a choice to make herself better. I am nowhere near qualified to diagnose her, but I suspect a specific personality disorder – there is a lot more going on than verbal abuse. During this time, I have found that my own values will not allow me to stop pursuing her, I have a thing about commitment – I made a commitment and I will honor it until the end, which will likely be pretty soon. I will not allow myself to be manipulated or verbally abused any more, but I will continue to act in loving and kind ways. Now that she sees that I am serious about divorce mediation, she is trying to manipulate me, saying she wants to move into the house and avoiding any conversation about mediation. So, I will give her another choice and a week to decide; couples therapy, schedule a mediation date, or I will hire an attorney and file in court…but through this all I will continue to be a kind, compassionate, and loving person. I will have some type of relationship with her for many more years, we have a daughter together and verbal and emotional abuse is not recognized by the courts as a grounds to not award shared custody – so I will not devolve to her level of disrespect and I will be able to look at myself in the mirror and be happy with my own actions and behavior.

    Jane, thank you for your kind wishes.

    Savannah, thank you for your recommendations. I will continue to grow, I enjoy becoming a better person than I once was. I guess pursuing her love probably isn’t what I am doing because I don’t want to be with her as she is now. I think what I am doing is honoring a commitment that I made when we married, which is to love her – and show her love. When the marriage is over, then I am released from that commitment, though I will still love her as a person and as the mother of my daughter.

    I know how toxic this kind of abuse is and I now know what to avoid in a relationship. It’s been a tough lesson; took me 12 years. Assuming the marriage is over, I will have to learn how to date and how to screen potential partners. She was my first girlfriend and I will always be grateful for the good things in the relationship but I cannot allow myself to forget the bad things, forgive yes, but I need to remember to learn from my mistakes.

    #112967
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Shaun:

    You read like a very reasonable, kind and loving man. Your honoring of the commitment you made is well, honorable, admirable, as long as you take care of yourself first and as long as you are aware and awake to reality.

    You are in this for the long run, having a daughter with her. Take care of your daughter, protect her from anyone who mistreats her, or may mistreat her, including her mother. Coming to think about it, commitment #1 is to the children we bring into this world. Honor the trust in your daughter’s eyes when she looks up to you to take good care of her.

    anita

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