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Well, that's one of the reasons I AM so angry. I've been trying to get through to him for years about the things he does that hurt me. It wasn't until I got angry that he seemed to hear me. I've been very clear with him that I hate nagging. That once I've resorted to nagging, that means I've felt my requests were repeatedly ignored (and no, I'm not above negotiating...just flat out not heard). That's how I feel about my recent anger. I feel driven to AOs where that hasn't been an issue in the past. It's like out of body experiences and I beat myself up for them afterward. That's exactly what I've been feeling like each time we try to talk now...like I have severe PMS and am watching myself from the outside and no longer able to control myself. I hate this person. I wish he could hear me when I speak to him. It makes me feel like he doesn't care about or respect the real me.


*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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If you lose the honesty, you lose the marriage. --Smile
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Yes, I started my photography business just two years ago. I used to be prodigy a saxophonist, but my jaw broke in college. This photography business has FINALLY filled that void in my life that I lost back in 1998...just before I met DH. I lost my identity...something that everyone around me seemed to respect and admire. And then I put everything into helping my husband reach his dreams.


*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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Check out this article from the MB website:

How to Deal With a Quarrelsome and Nagging Wife.

Don't be turned off by the title. The article describes how a husband's neglect of his wife leads to the kind of frustration you are experiencing. This might be something to point your husband to.


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Is that something that might make fun UA time further on?

My boyfriend and I sometimes drive somewhere with our cameras to do street photography or landscapes or wildlife.

I'm rubbish with mine whereas he is really good, but it's just for fun.



What would you do if you were not afraid?

"Fear is the little death. Fear is the mind-killer" Frank Herbert.

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Honestly? I think I deserve a gold medal after reading that nagging article. I'd be surprised if DH thought of me as a nagging wife at any point in our marriage.

"So she becomes demanding, disrespectful, and angry in an effort to get her way."
Maybe I'm being blind, but I can only remember a couple times that I was demanding and they involved the immediate safety of my children. I also didn't get my way. I backed off and well...my daughter bears the burns that changed his mind. And, yes, that really pisses me off. She has a silver dollar sized burn mark on her arm that is 2 years old and might never go away. Every time I edit it out of a picture, I remember how he disregarded my concerns.
The anger and disrespect is brand spanking new. I didn't FEEL anger or disrespect toward him until this past year. I internalized everything. We both found ways to turn any blame or responsibility back onto me. I treated him like a freaking god. A stinky, hairy, noisy god.

And now, all I'm asking for is some time and space to work through my anger. I take care of others all day long. I'm mentally and physically exhausted when my chipper husband walks through the door from his job that he loves and has been able to give his undivided attention to all day long. I can barely hear myself think until the kids are asleep. In the past, that has been the point where DH started hinting that it was time to take care of his needs. So, yeah, I'd prefer to finally bury myself in the work that makes me feel whole and appreciated by others and makes me feel good about myself. The last thing I want to do is go spend UA with the man who doesn't seem to even grasp everything I've given up to make sure he was happy. This isn't past tense either. I still don't think he realizes how much I do every day for our family. I don't think he realizes how exhausted I've felt this whole past year from the surgeries and hormonal hell of being thrust into menopause. I don't think he appreciates how tolerant and upbeat I've been given the hell I've endured...and I feel like I've done it alone. I wish he'd stop focusing on my failings. Stop pointing out my imperfections as a parent. Stop assuming all is well if I'm not whining and complaining to him. Stop forgetting about me.



*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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If you lose the honesty, you lose the marriage. --Smile
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Yesterday, a new friend of mine had the same prophylactic bilateral mastectomy I had a year ago tomorrow. She's doing amazing. I realize my recovery was especially bad and I want hers to be easy, but at the same time, seeing her up and moving around in her pictures made me cry and feel jealous. I told DH as much. I told him again how sad I am that a year later, I'm still not able to look back and be glad I went through with it.
His response was that I'm doing great.
I said, "No, really I'm not."
He said, "I meant physically."
"No, I'm not. I'm in pain." I have shooting pain in my chest off and on throughout the day. I'm dying to exercise and keep trying to, but it hurts. I'm dying to pick up my toddler without hurting myself. It's been a year and I haven't been able to scoop that sweet, little girl up in my arms the way she loves. SHE is far more understanding of my pain than my husband. My 2yo notices when I cringe or groan. She comes to me and hugs me and tells me it's going to be okay. Yesterday, she saw me crying about DH. She gently touched my face and asked if I was okay.
I told her, "No, baby. Mommy is sad."
"Why are you sad, Mommy?"
"Someone said something that made me sad."
"Do you want my blanket, Mommy?"



*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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Originally Posted by indiegirl
Is that something that might make fun UA time further on?

My boyfriend and I sometimes drive somewhere with our cameras to do street photography or landscapes or wildlife.

Yes, that sounds nice. We went to Breckenridge to celebrate our 10 year anniversary this past August. I enjoyed that trip and loved getting to relax and take lots of pictures. He played along and was supportive of that. I also enjoyed the hiking we did even though I was in plenty of pain. That's the only time we've done something like that together since having kids. I pretty much insisted that we do something special for our 10 year since we'd only ever gone out to movies and/or dinner. It wasn't a demand...I knew he wanted it too, but I asked him to do the bulk of the planning for this.

I can't tell you how much I wanted to go to to Switzerland 2 years ago. He got to go give a talk there for his work. I even tried to send my good camera with him because I so desperately wanted pictures. He took a few pictures with his phone. I got to take care of three kids on my own for a week. I don't feel like he shared much of that trip with me. We chatted via email a few times that week, but our son was about to go in for major surgery and I was pretty stressed out with those pre-op appointments while DH was gone.

My mom was a travel agent when I was young. I was very lucky in that I got to travel the world for a handful of years. I LOVED that. My dream vacation is to go to New Zealand. I haven't really got to go anywhere since I got married (I realize this is often something that must be saved until the kids can all be left behind for a longer period). I've always looked forward to the day when I'd get to somehow join him for one of his conferences in an exotic location even though I know the bulk of his time would be working. Of course, I'd much rather endure seemingly endless flights, preparing a lecture, nice dinners, and hotel buffets and gyms/hot tubs interspersed with intelligent conversation with some of the smartest people in the world than play slave to three kids. Hmmm...I guess he did tell me plenty about his trip.

Anyhow, yes, I would like to just go on little day trips away from the kids, but the prospect of planning that is a bit overwhelming right now.


*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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If you lose the honesty, you lose the marriage. --Smile
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Originally Posted by SmileADay
Honestly? I think I deserve a gold medal after reading that nagging article. I'd be surprised if DH thought of me as a nagging wife at any point in our marriage.

"So she becomes demanding, disrespectful, and angry in an effort to get her way."
Maybe I'm being blind, but I can only remember a couple times that I was demanding and they involved the immediate safety of my children. I also didn't get my way. I backed off and well...my daughter bears the burns that changed his mind. And, yes, that really pisses me off. She has a silver dollar sized burn mark on her arm that is 2 years old and might never go away. Every time I edit it out of a picture, I remember how he disregarded my concerns.
The anger and disrespect is brand spanking new. I didn't FEEL anger or disrespect toward him until this past year. I internalized everything. We both found ways to turn any blame or responsibility back onto me. I treated him like a freaking god. A stinky, hairy, noisy god.

And now, all I'm asking for is some time and space to work through my anger. I take care of others all day long. I'm mentally and physically exhausted when my chipper husband walks through the door from his job that he loves and has been able to give his undivided attention to all day long. I can barely hear myself think until the kids are asleep. In the past, that has been the point where DH started hinting that it was time to take care of his needs. So, yeah, I'd prefer to finally bury myself in the work that makes me feel whole and appreciated by others and makes me feel good about myself. The last thing I want to do is go spend UA with the man who doesn't seem to even grasp everything I've given up to make sure he was happy. This isn't past tense either. I still don't think he realizes how much I do every day for our family. I don't think he realizes how exhausted I've felt this whole past year from the surgeries and hormonal hell of being thrust into menopause. I don't think he appreciates how tolerant and upbeat I've been given the hell I've endured...and I feel like I've done it alone. I wish he'd stop focusing on my failings. Stop pointing out my imperfections as a parent. Stop assuming all is well if I'm not whining and complaining to him. Stop forgetting about me.

I am so sorry for the pain you are in, and the disappointments that you have had to bear. Your physical challenges, and your husband's lack of empathy. He really can't feel what it's like to be you. Nobody can, because nobody will ever experience your exact same situation.

There are many here, including myself, who have experienced a similar lack of empathy from their spouse. Right now, you are feeling like your husband will Never get it. And you may be right. But he is here posting, and even if some of what he posts is hurtful, please trust me that it is a wonderful way for others to help him change. The patterns are very obvious to us, and would be very obvious to the MB coaches, especially with help. It is not an easy process, but it can happen, and any progress will bless the lives of your children. Having said that, the habits are deeply ingrained, and without a 3rd party to point them out, it's unlikely that he will be motivated to see them.

I felt similar to you at times, where the pain of the lack of empathy was so intense, and my health had suffered, triggers abounded, but I couldn't imagine being the cause of my children's unhappiness through divorce.

I can't offer you anything more than the others here, but want you to know that there are those who have experienced maybe a small portion of your pain, and that you are in the right place. For whatever reason, you have held on this long, so you are probably one like me who just holds on, even when we probably shouldn't.

One thing that I have learned is that if I am going to hold on, then I have to stick to my plan regardless of how hard my spouse makes it. I need to be responsible for my own lovebusters. We all have disappointing circumstances in this life, and having chosen a partner without empathy (substitute whatever) is one of those that we cannot change. But my stronger moments are when I decide to focus on my plan, regardless. And I feel that if I can do it under the most difficult of circumstances, then maybe if things don't work out for some reason in my marriage, I will be uberprepared for whatever good things come my way in the future, and I will have an eagle eye for decision making. For now, I try to appreciate that I have a partner who, despite his own challenges, my shortcomings, and many extenuating circumstances, is willing to do this program with me. Not everyone is so lucky.




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I really hope what I have to say is helpful for you, and not annoying.

You mentioned that you are burying yourself in your work to get some needs met.

I got to a point in my situation, after about 10 years of marriage where I felt that going to work was the solution. I did get some of my needs met, which helped me tolerate the fact that my husband wouldn't. However, it is a poor substitute for what we really need from our husbands, and it doesn't make it better. I wish that I had known about MB then. What's interesting, is that our relationship eroded further during that time, because I was less able to meet his needs for FC/DS and he was judgmental of that. But it did give me more independent financial power. But in the end, for most women, living in a relationship lacking extraordinary care will damage your ability to do ANYTHING well. Then it becomes more Stress, More Chaos.

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Thank you, DidntQuit. No, I did not find that annoying at all. I've been feeling very alone, having a difficult time communicating while so emotional, and I think I started off really badly here, probably because I was redirecting some of my distress at the people trying to help. And I apologize for that.

I understand the importance of not finding other things to fulfill my ENs. And yes, my photography business does do that. But, more importantly it gives me an identity that I have lacked for so many years. Something that makes me feel more important. I'm not just a mom or just a dutiful wife. I need that in my life. I'm an artist and I just spent the last 17 years of my life trying to replace my greatest passion that was painfully stolen from me while holding my husband up and building a family. I went from being one of the top saxophonists at one of the top universities to...Mom. Please don't ask me to sacrifice what I've found. People finally see me again. It'd be nice if my husband did. I know I need to give him the chance to change whether or not he deserves it. I know that I need to change and grow, too, in how I value this marriage, how to respectfully stand my ground, and how to balance my business and my relationship.
The balancing act has me a bit baffled, though. How do I give him that chance while desperately needing some space to process my feelings? I don't understand why this has to feel so forced and rushed. Maybe I feel like I've earned the right to be angry for a bit...and maybe I feel like he doesn't deserve to be angry at me right now. Of course, I know and respect that all feelings are valid.


*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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Why would you think your work would need to be sacrificed? From what I can gather you are both enthusiastic.

I've been wondering if you're enthusiastic about being a SAHM but I don't think anybody would be if they had no recreation.

My mother was alwaysvery firm about her days off and nights out.
I call her Marmee like in Little Women because "You are the sunshine-maker of the family,and if you get dismal there is no fair weather". I would love to see a situation where that happened for you. There's no reason why vacations should be some sort of impossible pipe dream either.



Last edited by indiegirl; 01/06/15 03:55 PM.

What would you do if you were not afraid?

"Fear is the little death. Fear is the mind-killer" Frank Herbert.

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Well, I'm realizing my work time will need to be sacrificed for UA at some point.



*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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If you lose the honesty, you lose the marriage. --Smile
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Why not embrace the identity of working artist and put your daughter in full-time childcare? Pay for full time care but keep her home and enjoy her if/when you are caught up with work.

You are a working mother and you need appropriate child-care...

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I'll be able to do that later this year. I think she'll love that and I look forward to that time for myself and my business.


*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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Ok, I've talked to your husband and I suggest you read what I posted as our situations sound similar. Now I want to talk to you.

I am very glad that you are doing your photography. Good for you!!! I know that your husband has been asleep, but I think you have finally woken him up. So here is what I have to say to you.

Take care of your side of the street. It isn't all his fault. You yourself said that you should have gotten an award for not nagging. Yep, I have that same award. I thought that is what a wife was supposed to do, to be supportive. To help your husband the best you can and raise that family and forget about your own needs... So I hid them. Now how in the world could my husband know that anything was wrong. I would make half hearted attempts to tell him or I would tell myself I shouldn't feel that way. But he was not a mindreader. Neither is your husband. You somehow have this magical idea that he should know exactly what to do and that he alone did all of the hurting. But some of those choices you made yourself. He didn't MAKE you do them. Now maybe you have decided those were not the best choices. I get that. I understand.

I also understand the feeling that he only cares about you because your being incapacitated impacts HIS world, not that he truly cares about you. I believe that has changed, but the only way for him to prove this to you if for you to let him plan the 15 hours. Nothing will get better if you do not.

So may I ask you if you will please try a 6 month experiment. Allow him to plan 15 hours out of the house. You don't have to do a thing. He will do it all. At least try. If at the end of 6 months, nothing has changed or he hasn't followed through, then get a divorce. Don't stay like this. But give him a chance to prove it. I'm not saying you have to open your heart. I'm saying you agree to 15 hours out of the house.

Can you do that?

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"Ok, I've talked to your husband and I suggest you read what I posted as our situations sound similar. Now I want to talk to you.
I've been told not to read his thread. Would you mind copying and pasting the part you'd like me to read over here?

I was perfectly willing to plan the UA time even though I still don't see how 15 hours is possible. I don't know what he has said on his thread, but he's told me he completely agrees. We sat down to plan out the time and came up with 8 hours. We ended up sitting down for a discussion the other night and I realized just how far off mark he still is in trying to understand my perspective and I still feel like he is putting on a happy face while he is actually quite angry and bitter. Can't we just let some of that anger on both sides subside before jumping in with aggressive love building attempts? It's just that I feel like I'm getting angrier the MORE time I spend with him right now. I feel out of control and have committed more love busters in the past week than I think I've done our whole marriage. I need some space to cool off. I really wish I could just go on a trip away from all of this and have some time to hear myself think without feeling so much pressure to move forward.
Thank you, hw47. I appreciate your feedback.


*Me - 38
*Him -37
*Met 1/15/99; engaged 12/24/03; married 8/22/04
*DS 6/2/05, DD 12/3/07, DD 2-29-12
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Smile,

I've been following your thread. I too went through a very angry and resentful stint, after years as a neglected SAHM building H's career. I don't have any advice really, because looking back, I was SO ANGRY at that time, I don't know that spending a lot of time together would have been positive at the time (although we didn't really have MB as a tool yet, nor was my H trying like yours is). I was definitely in the conflict stage.

What I do want to caution you about is this. You are also at your most vulnerable at this time. Guard yourself against being something you are not. I drank a lot more, cussed a lot more, and had AO's in a way I never had. I LB'd like a crazy woman. Fortunately for me, I like to write, so I would often blog wildly about my innermost thoughts, most of which included very negative and hateful things towards H (one such creation was titled '50 things I hate about you'). But I never showed him any of it, and then when I calmed down, I threw all that venom in the trash. Guard yourself against showing that side of you, because you won't be proud of it after the fact, and you can't undo it.

Also guard yourself against the temptation to get your needs met by other men. That might sound crazy to you but just recognize the fact that in your anger and resentment, you are also weak and vulnerable.

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Hopeful is right. Now in retrospect, I take a lot of hard looks at my OWN side of the street. I wasn't always honest about my needs, and when I was it was in a whiney, love busting way.

I neglected myself a lot too. As SAHM's we tend to do this. We feel guilt spending money on ourselves, we feel guilt asking for help doing 'our job'. We create our own dissatisfaction in so many ways. We are the martyr for our family! But, it doesn't make us more attractive or help our family in any way.

One thing that stands out to me is that you are NOT a SAHM. You are a working mom. Just because you don't go to an employer, and are rather self employed as a photographer, does not make that not so. I agree that you need to treat yourself as such, and use daycare to do your work like most working moms do. Don't try to get your work done at night when kids are in bed, or when it impacts your family the least, at the cost of you and your marriage. Treat it like you would a regular job, where you are not also responsible for taking care of a toddler and doing the laundry while you are are working.

I think you will find that if you start using daycare more frequently while you are doing your photography, it will open up a LOT more potential for UA time. You do not need to give up your photography to do this instead.

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Originally Posted by SmileADay
I'll be able to do that later this year. I think she'll love that and I look forward to that time for myself and my business.

Why later this year? Do you not plan to *work* until later this year? If you worked for an employer, would you bring you toddler to work with you and tell your employer that you will get daycare 'later this year'? Of course not, you would not work until you had daycare. Your photography business is no different.

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Smile,

If your H going to the gym is a source of resentment for you, and he says he will stop going, do you respond by telling him it isn't necessary to stop going?

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