This Week - Not How, But Why
My issues are so many and complicated I don't know where or how to start, but I'll try. I've been with my husband for 14 years and married about eight. Even when we were dating he was cold, emotionless, and secretive. He would never share things like his salary and his whereabouts, or recount stories about his childhood.
However he loved his family very much and adored children. Silly me, I figured when we got married, he would love and treat me like his family, too. By the time we married we had broken up five times, and the fights were horrible. We are expecting our first child this summer, and he's still very cold.
His family hates me and is always meddling in his affairs. His brother and sisters have keys and open access to our home and come and go as they please—and he thinks this is fine. I love my family, too, but they do not come to my house unannounced as they please.
Please note there is nothing wrong with me. I'm smart, educated, physically attractive, gainfully employed, active in the community, and popular in my social and professional life. While I am pregnant and this should be a happy time, I am contemplating divorce.
I believe if I don't leave these toxic and crazy people, I'm going to end up in a mental home. I have asked him to attend counseling, but he refuses. Please help! We are beyond fixing. I just need to know how to exit while I still can!
Evelyn, your letter raises a hundred questions, and the least of these is how to end it. See a good lawyer. Any 12-year-old could tell you that. But neither we, nor a 12-year-old, can tell you how to end the lifetime of contact you will have with these people because of your child.
The 99 questions which need answering involve how a smart, attractive woman finds herself in this situation. Without new input there will be no new output. Unless you grow as a person, after you divorce this will happen again because people do what they know.
You cannot change your husband through counseling for two reasons. First, he won't go, and second, he is the same person he has always been. He has a right to say, "How dare she ask me to change!" Marriage counseling isn't like throwing salt over your shoulder when it has been spilled. It isn't magic.
But do get individual counseling for yourself. Your life is a mixture of parents and friends, common clichés and inherited emotions. Somewhere in all that you picked up the wrong answer to the question, who should I marry?
Wayne & Tamara
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