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9 years ago  ::  Jul 21, 2009 - 1:35PM #1
Posts: 2
Hello all-
I am a frequent reader here, but first-time poster.

My husband and I were married in May of 2003.  We have a 3.5 year-old daughter, and he also has a 14 year old son from a previous relationship who lived with us.  We have been separated since September, with my daughter and I living with my brother.

I had divorce papers drawn up in March, and have been waiting for him to sign them all this time.  He finally signed and returned the papers to me last Wednesday.  I had been waiting for the papers anxiously, wanting this door to be shut so that he and I could both move on, but the emotions I've felt have been far from relief.  I am alternately terribly sad and incredibly angry, and neither of these are emotions I expected this long after the separation.

The anger comes largely on behalf of my daughter, who I never ever wanted to see grow up with parents in different houses.  There is anger on my own behalf as well, particularly since the main reason I left (my husband's temper and demeaning attitude toward me and my stepson) is something I struggled with at the beginning of our relationship (the temper, at least), and with counseling was able to prevail over.  I am angry at him that he was worth it to me to get over my temper before we were even married, and that now, with me being his wife and with his children in the mix, he has not defeated his.

The sadness is because I am losing the man I expected to-and wanted to-spend my life with, and because my daughter will be deprived of a two-parent household, something I was also deprived of and suffered emotionally from.  As far as my sadness for myself, I feel like my husband "got" me in a way that no one else ever has or ever will again, and I mourn that loss.  I also fear that my daughter will suffer the same way I did from not having her father in the house with her.

I wonder all the time if I have made the right choice, and I feel as though my hands are tied.  Each time I see my husband, there is always something that happens that reinforces why I left.  We had plenty of ups and downs through our years together, but I don't know how I could risk my daughter being treated in the manner my stepson and I were treated without carrying a massive amount of guilt and worry all the time, despite what my other feelings about the situation are.

I just don't know how to get over these powerful feelings of loss and unhappyness, and I don't know if they are normal.  I expected to be relieved and happy when he returned the papers to me, not so angry and sad and more confused than ever.
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9 years ago  ::  Jul 21, 2009 - 7:06PM #2
Posts: 1,407


Welcome to the Divorce & Separation Forum, andsorry for what brought you here. As you have hopefully seen, there are many caring members here who are happy to give feedback and offer support.

Please know that it is completely natural and understandable to have such a wide range of feelings over the finality of the divorce. At one point you had every expectation that you would spend the rest of your life in a wonderful loving relationship with this man, and that dream is now finally dashed for good. Before the papers, part of you was perhaps holding out some kind of hope that the relationship would magically reconcile. Although you have been able to do the work to overcome your demons, evidently he hasn't and that is of course sad. Unfortunately, you cannot change him, he must decide to change himself.

You are also mourning the loss of the kind of family environment you wanted for your children, and naturally feel deep sadness for them not being able to experience it. Remember that feelings are neither right nor wrong, they just are. Sometimes the only thing we can do is to sit with them, as difficult as that may be, and allow them to run their course, however long that takes. With such a deep loss, it is natural to have deep grief over it. There is no timetable to grieving a loss or a death - and what you are going through is indeed like a death.

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Divorce & Separation

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9 years ago  ::  Jul 25, 2009 - 9:54PM #3
Posts: 9,954


Yep, your feelings are your feelings, they are what they are, and they're neither right nor wrong.  Try to forgive yourself for your mistakes, would be my advice, and to get out of the rut(at least temporarily) and cycle of anger/sadness, try to find at least 3 positive things to be grateful for every day, and spend at least 10 minutes(20 when you can stand it) simply being in that "attitude of gratitude."  It's an amazing/awesome/transformative experience, if you can keep it up.  Oh, and by "positive things to be grateful for," I'm saying that a statement like "I am grateful I don't have cancer" is a negative thing to be grateful for, even if true; I'm saying that "I'm appreciative for and thankful about that bird's song" would be an example of a positive thing to be grateful for.  (With practice, however, one can even be sincere in expressing thanks for even the bad things that happen; for example, a little over 3 weeks ago, I fell about 13-14feet off a roof onto a brick patio, and while I was in a great deal of pain then, [diminished but still present now]I still thanked God.)

It's been my sad observation that far too often, people go into both relationships and marriages with far too many unspoken expectations---then become terribly disappointed that their visions of eternal happiness(or at least mutual kindness) vanish like morning mist under the heat of the day.  It is when their failure to communicate their expectations properly results in unhappiness(or worse) that things go awry---and even when someone DOES do that, is CAREFUL to do that, circumstances and personalities cannot be relied upon to remain stable forever.

When you're ready to move forward, I would strongly encourage you to be more outspoken about what you expect from s man...and try to simplify things for him.  For example, if you know that you have an "anger problem" and so does he, and you decide to get help with it and he does not, hello?  Giant red flag is a-wavin'!  "But I love him" is a terrible reason to overlook serious flaws of character and temperament, especially if your goal is to live in joy or peace or whatever other positive attributes you decide are of most importance.  After all, there have been couples from the dawn of time that seem to thrive and do well on violent arguments with makeup sex afterward, and who am I to say that's wrong?  Every relationship is like a dance, a negotiation, constant communication by both verbal and non-verbal means...iow, give another an opportunity to speak, listen often and carefully, perhaps asking questions intended to draw them out, and they'll eventually TELL you what they're like, what they're about, etc.

But please don't take the above statement as beating up on you; I don't mean it that way, but for your healing.  Personally, I start with speaking out about what I like, what I don't like, what I will and will not accept...then walk my talk.  If a woman starts treating me with contempt or ridicule, she'll change her tune immediately or I'm outta there.  Life's too short to put up with crap from knuckleheads.


Warmest regards-


"History records that the moneychangers have used every form of abuse, deceit, intrigue, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments by controlling money and it's issuance."
-- James Madison(1751-1836), Father of the Constitution for the USA, 4th US President
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9 years ago  ::  Aug 07, 2009 - 12:57PM #4
Posts: 2
Wow, hit *many* nails on the head in your response.  Thank you for your words and advice.  I love the idea of picking out three things per day to be grateful for, and that you picked a birds' song as one of your examples is just perfect, as I love to just sit and watch birds walk.  (I'm not sure why, but I find birds absolutely fascinating.  :) )

I wasn't on this forum for a couple of weeks because I was on vacation, and I mostly look at this site while I'm at work.  During that vacation, I spent a lot of time with my mother and daughter, the two people who inspire me most.  I think it has helped to see that I have plenty of love around me, even if it isn't the type of love you receive in marriage, and that I am making the choice that I need to make for both my daughter and myself.  She doesn't need a mother who gives her the idea that a woman should walk on eggshells or put up with things that are demeaning or hurtful; rather, she needs to see that it is okay to demand the best for yourself, and that if someone isn't willing to adjust in order to combat their demons, it's acceptable to be alone until someone who does accept responsibility for themselves comes along.  With this in mind, I have taken the signed papers back to my lawyer to be filed, and feel as though a weight has been lifted.

Quite frankly, I think I'm a great catch.  I have a Masters degree, make a decent living, have a good sense of humor and sharp wit, am kind, and am not *too* painful to look at.  :)  The emotional barriers eating my husband up from the inside will have to be his loss.
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9 years ago  ::  Aug 10, 2009 - 5:42AM #5
Posts: 1

Divorce is one of the single most painful things allaround. My Mother and Step Father are in the process of a bitter divorce after being together for 20 years. My father has been caught in an affair with a woman my age.  Divorce is not easy. When you marry so much of yourself is invested in that relationship. All you can to for your children is continue to be there for them. It's going to take some getting used to but it will only make you stronger. You will get through.

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9 years ago  ::  Aug 24, 2009 - 2:01PM #6
Posts: 17,597

Aug 14, 2009 -- 9:58AM, jessie1ka wrote:

To recover after divorce you need to split your personality because one part of you is calmly filling out financial disclosure forms and the other one is grieving. I have read on Project Weight Loss   some tips for rebuilding after divorce. If there are kids involved you should devote some time to help them overcome this situation and get used to the transition. Remember you can’t help them if you neglect your own physical and emotional well-being.

Jessie1ka is a SPAMMER.  She is putting the same link on all her posts.

Beliefnet Community Wide Moderator ~ Peace Love Stardove

People change for two main reasons: either their minds have been opened or their hearts have been broken.

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