To any women out there who are stuck in a bad situation, you can get out. It will be anguishing.
You will make it. And you will learn who your true friends are, because not only are the marital assets divided, but often long term friendships are as well. Be prepared for his extended family to completely shut you and your children off. Be prepared, in case you weren’t already aware, that his family never really liked you anyway.
Almost four years ago I got to a place of such intense discouragement and pain that I jumped ship. This was the beginning of the end, which has still not ended. There has been a mandated truce, but no resolution. I am no longer living in fear, although I am wary that he will go postal. By all accounts, his behavior continues to be strange and negative, and he says random and odd things which get back to me. He complains to anyone and everyone, often to people he only knows casually. The overall theme is I have made him this way; I have ruined his life.
I am no longer the person I was. I am no longer anxious and self-loathing, nor all the bad things he said I was.
In the beginning of the big change, I was like someone touched by both Stockholm Syndrome and post-traumatic stress disorder. I knew with certainty I could no longer bear the life I was leading. All the pretension and all the social masks had worn me down. I couldn’t fake it anymore.
At a point some years earlier, I observed how the situation was affecting the kids. They are perceptive and intuitive, and once they realized I had been lying to them, I had to come clean.
Each went through his own process of dealing, and that will continue to cycle back over time. I am pretty sure both were relieved, and at different times informed me that they were glad that home had become a quiet refuge. I’ve also been on the business end of their anger over the fact that the financial situation has negatively impacted them. They know I love them beyond reason,
The good news is I am more myself than I’ve been in 25 years. I don’t have someone telling me on a regular basis how I don’t measure up, and how useless I am, and what a sponge I am. I know better now.
I am thriving. I am at peace, and I am alive!