I've been in recovery before with my now exH. Honestly, he truly did want to change back then, but just always slipped backwards to old habits. However, I did have to take control of MY life, and choose what I was going to live with, and it had nothing to do with controlling him, just tired of my life revolving around him like it had been. What I'm saying is, that I didn't want control of him, just myself.
Yes - that's exactly where I am at - you get it! I started choosing for myself, taking care of myself, drawing boundaries...and that was percieved as controlling. But it wasn't.
Boundaries like: I refuse to live under the same roof with a man who treated me and our children with complete disrespect, neglect, anger and selfishness. Oh another unreasonable boundary - divorcing to protect myself and the kids from a man who was with another woman, and spending money that we needed to live - on vacations with her!
Oh, and taking care of myself...how dare I move to VA and make it inconvenient for him to see his kids!! Control freak, that's me!! Never mind that I need, needed, help. 3 children full time, no career, and no family...hrmmm...can't imagine why I would want to live near my own folks!
Divorce and stretched incomes and difficult visitations...these are all consequences of the actions he choose to make. I didn't set out to "get him" or "show him" or manipulate him into coming home...I pretty much gave up thinking that it would ever happen. I was simply taking stock and moving forward, taking responsiblity for what was mine to take care of.
Now...the first time that I filed for divorce...THAT was pure anger and manipulation, meant to shock him into coming home. I was completely wrong for doing that. It was definitely a control play - because I wasn't ready emotionally and I didn't really mean it.
So it's a fine line....taking care of oneself and taking responsibility for ones own life - and NOT acting in a manipulative and controlling fashion. Sometimes the motive is the ONLY thing thats different - the actions may be identical. That's where it can get so confusing!
Pain is a given, misery is optional.