I’ve been married to my CN for almost 22 years, coupled for 25. We have 5 children, aged 21 – 13, who all still live at home and have been emotionally abused almost as much as I have. Currently, we are separated (since January of this year), but I’m nowhere near being done with him. I was hoping against hope that the therapy he has access to at the VA clinic ((he’s a Marine Vet) would help him change, even though I know the odds were never in our favor. I’ve finally accepted that we will never be able to reconcile and be healthy. When I told him that I wanted to start divorce proceedings, he was shocked, as I’ve never wanted that – even though he’s threatened it countless times when he’s been enraged. He tried to manipulate me with anger, threats, then sent text messages to all our kids telling them we’re divorcing even though he knew I had not talked to them about it yet. When none of that swayed me, he became depressed and extremely apologetic. He started lamenting his abandonment issues from childhood, which of course led to him asking me how could I – the only person, other than his grandmother, that he’s ever been able to trust – now abandon him, too. His voice and demeanor softened, he threw in some “please”s, along with love-bombing and promises to go get the help at the VA clinic and I lost my resolve. He’s been calling and texting multiple times a day since then begging me to come spend time with him.
I just feel so bad for him when he gets like this – even though I KNOW it’s manipulative (he swears there’s no manipulation, and that he really wants to do better by us). He doesn’t have a new supply *yet* (cheating hasn’t been a real issue for us), and I know how much he hates being alone, and how dark things get for him when he’s alone with his thoughts for too long. He really does have some horrible emotional scars from his childhood, and I think a part of him really WANTS to stop raging against the kids and me. He just can’t. Yet, I can’t convince my heart to do what my head knows I should do – which is to stay away and start the divorce process. I have so much guilt about abandoning him, knowing all that I know about his past, and his bouts with depression and anxiety. How do I get past this without feeling like I’m being as insensitive as he has been?
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