December 2017
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31


marriage struggles


How do I even begin?

Life has been hard lately. It's hard to look forward to anything because the moment seems so dead. And I haven't wanted to write this because I have been too exhausted, and too afraid of being judged. I have become keenly aware of my failings.

Ben and I have really hit rock bottom in our marriage. And don't get me wrong, he's certainly not abusive in any way, shape, or form; my feelings have to do with what he doesn't do (or hasn't done) rather than what he does do. I thought it was funny that I totally forgot our anniversary (December 13th) -- now I'm realizing that it was a symptom of my apathy.

About a week ago, I realized that I have run completely out of love for him. I no longer want to be with him -- and since I feel completely asexual, I just want to be alone. I certainly don't want anyone else -- I know there is no one who would make a better spouse. I want to love him, but I can't seem to muster any care. I have absolutely no idea what to do. And I feel so incredibly guilty and unworthy, because he can do many nice things for me and it barely makes an impression. If it were anyone else I'd be overwhelmed with gratitude -- and I used to be that way towards him but not now. I WANT so badly to be able to FEEL the love behind the nice things he's been doing lately (this past week he has been trying really hard to show love)...

I feel like I have been working so hard to grow and change for the past two years, in large part so that I can be a better wife and companion, and he hasn't been working at all. At the beginning of December we bought a book called "His Needs, Her Needs" which was very enlightening -- we realized that neither of us had been meeting the others' needs. But I feel like I have been meeting some of his needs, while he has been meeting none of mine. He used to meet mine -- and I lived on that for a long time but now I'm out.

None of that explains why his actions NOW aren't making a difference -- unless my balance literally has gone negative and he's having to work his way up to neutral. It used to be that a back rub would completely lighten my spirit -- now it makes no difference.

----------

And on top of that, our car repairs cost 250$ more than we expected -- and now her alternator has gone out, which will be a 200$ repair plus 60$ towing. We still owe a 300$ doctor bill. That's about 600$ more than we can afford... I'm tired of fighting to survive. I'm at the point where I am okay with going into debt. And don't argue with me about it, it won't do a damn bit of good and it will hurt and offend me.

I'm overwhelmed. And I really hate that it is all happening at my favorite time of year, so I can't enjoy myself to the fullest. It makes me feel hopeless to see Rebecca and her fiance kissingkissingkissing, because I have never ever had that and I can't bring myself to believe that I ever will. Ben has never been very extravagant with his love, and now I don't think I could enjoy it if he was. So it's a good thing that I'm pretty numb right now, because if I wasn't I'd have been crying my eyes out on Christmas Eve.

All of this is making me physically ill. I almost never get sick -- if I do, it's always because of some terrible emotional thing. My belly is very sensitive to my spirit.

Please be very very cautious if you comment, and don't offer advice unless you've actually been in a similar situation. I am too fragile right now.

sounds: Stars: "Heart"
connecting:

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Comments
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acid_burns ══╣marina / sadness╠══
*hugsyou* &hearts:
belenen ══╣gentle╠══
*hugs back*
lilerthkwake ══╣╠══
Hey, sweetheart. You probably know that I WAS in a similar situation--I left my husband after we'd been married for two and a half years because I realized that I just did not love him and that we wanted completely different things out of life--and we were completely different people. I just did not have that love for him anymore--in fact, I realized that I was never really in love with him. I cared for him, but I realized that I had made a mistake by marrying for all the wrong reasons. Our marriage went through a long, slow death and it was very hard for both of us.

I'm not going to offer "advice" per se. All I'll say is that sometimes you go through low points in marriage, it is completely natural, and that's when you rely on the COMMITMENT until you have the FEELINGS come back. Feelings can come and go, but your commitment rests on the fact that you know this is the person you want to be with. I could have remained committed to my husband, but I chose not to because I knew that he was not the person that I wanted to be with. I think that I "settled" for him (not because he was a bad man, but because he was not what I wanted... we shared few interests and passions). Your job--and I know you can do it--is to sort through your heart and determine what this low point is. Just a natural valley in marriage? Or a signal that you made a mistake? Only you can figure that out, and you are so very good at looking inward that I know you'll be able to find a place of peace.

I know how hard this is, I really do. And honestly, I will not judge you (and I would poke out the eyes of anyone who DID judge you). No one who has NOT been in your situation can pass judgment, but they often will. If it would help you to hear more of what happened in my marriage, I'd be glad to share. Obviously, no two relationships are the same, but it does help to know that you're not alone in your feelings.

***hugs*** Lots of love to you, Bel.
chillychilly22 ══╣╠══
I have never been married, but I have to say you make really good points.

Belenen, I'm sorry to hear you're going through rough times in your marriage. Like I said, I've never been married but I do know that it will be hard work at times. You will get to the core of how you feel towards husband and what you want from him. Once you gather all your thoughts, talk with him about it. Every relationship will be tested at one time or another.

Whatever the outcome, I know you will pull through this because you have us (livejournal friends and friends in person) to be here for you. (And I can say that because I've seen your friends via livejournal give you such good support and advice before, and you've always done the same in return.)
belenen ══╣╠══
belenen ══╣╠══
lilerthkwake ══╣╠══
shaybe ══╣╠══
Bel hun..
Ok well i don't know if you remeber this summer but Rob and I were in a similar place. He kind of stopped loving me. He just fell out of love, and it had more to do with his depression then anything. Because of this I felt destroyed and depressed and confused and all my self worth died. When he dumped me though I became my old comfedent self and he realized why he was in love with me before. I don't know if it's exactly what you are going through but hnestly I know sometimes sticking through the rough spots is what keeps love going for a loooong time. My best friends Mike and Amanda went through a year when they were together where they hated eachother and were not in love at all... but they knew deep down that it was a phase and they did love eachother and they'd get over in. THey stuck it out and gave eachother space and they totally fell back in love. They are married now and so happy. If you are feeling asexual then don't push yourself... Rob has kind of been dealing with that too lately because he is not in the mood often. Instead why don't you take a day or two and do things that normally make you feel super confident and free.. away from Ben. Just kind of think about what things make you the most you.... not you wife of Ben but you.. super strong christian woman. Which reminds me... pray too.. God is a great ear.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
Re: Bel hun..
I'm so happy for you and Rob. ;-) Thanks for sharing, that was helpful. *hugs*
dreaded_bliss ══╣╠══
I'm sorry you're feeling this way. I know this is a difficult time to bear in your relationship, but it's not forever, no matter how you resolve the situation. This isn't about failing; difficult times are a means of testing your and your partner's ability to grow with and care for eachother.

The best thing you can do is tell Ben exactly what you're feeling in a gentle, nonaccusatory way. If he isn't meeting your needs, he needs to know that so he can start working. "None of that explains why his actions NOW aren't making a difference -- unless my balance literally has gone negative and he's having to work his way up to neutral." I think you hit it on the head there. His actions may do nothing for you or even repulse you in the beginning. It takes time to work the love back into things.

I'm glad that your situation hasn't turned taken a turn toward abusive. I was once in a relationship where, being young and inexperienced as we were, we turned to verbal abuse and semi-violent (object-throwing) arguments because we couldn't handle the low points. Communication is key to making it through this, and if you can survive this together you can make it through anything.

I hope things take a turn for the better soon. I wish you hadn't felt this bad during the holidays. *big hug* ♥



belenen ══╣gentle╠══
Thank you so much for this. ♥ It really helped; it helped me not to feel like I was just unreasonable, like it was normal for me to feel the way I do.
evileve ══╣╠══
Your relationship will have its ups, then its downs. Right now it is down, but if you stick with it it will go up again.
Don't quit. It takes lots of work.
belenen ══╣garrulous╠══
thanks for the encouragement... I suppose you just have to keep plodding on sometimes.
streaked_beauty ══╣╠══
I have faith that things will work out in the end for you.
belenen ══╣loving╠══
that simple comment was SO encouraging, thank you. ♥
ex_alariya46 ══╣╠══
I'm free until 7pm on the 31st, and except for going to mass with Kevin all of the 1st. And I have my starbucks coffee card, so you don't have to worry about having to pay for your coffee.

it hurts to have that deep, dull numbness in your spirit that almost aches because its lack of hurting is...like slamming your head against a brick wall that won't move...my situation with joe was similar, but different. I don't know that I have any place to offer advice, and so I'm not. I'm just reaching out my arms to cuddle and snuggle you while we drink your favorite coffee.

and... i'm here.
camilleyun ══╣╠══
There's a birthday card I wanted to send you along with a photo but couldn't since I don't have your new address and I'm in the UK now dealing with Ian weirdness it'll have to wait until i get back to the US.
belenen ══╣╠══
faetal ══╣╠══
I want to say a whole lot, but I will wait until you feel a bit less fragile. I've been in similar situations.. but everyone is diffirent.
I do want to offer my ear if you want to talk.
*hugs*
belenen ══╣gentle╠══
thank you, that meant a lot. Especially you being careful with me. ♥
thesaj ══╣╠══
Praying for you....

(((((HUGS)))))

I know that at times love waxes and wanes....I just admonish you to consider the long term and not act in the short term based on the immediate now.

Perhaps, writing about several wonderful things from the past will allow you to frame the potential in the future as well?

- Jason
belenen ══╣analytical╠══
thank you... I think the scary thing was mostly that we'd never been through anything like this -- I had never experienced feeling that way (devoid of emotion) about anyone I loved. But it was temporary, and now I'll know.
thesaj ══╣╠══
aubkabob ══╣hug╠══
i can't really offer advice about marriage, as i have never been in a long-term relationship. just know that i'm here for you, should you need me. i'm a great listener.

just remember that i love you, and that this, too, shall soon pass.
belenen ══╣loving╠══
I loooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooove you AUBREY!!!!!!!!! So much. *kisseskisseskisses*

I miss you, my friend. ♥ But know that I wholeheartedly support your new pursuits. I may annoy you with phone calls sometimes though. You'll just have to remember that it's okay to tell me that you aren't in the mood to talk.
aubkabob ══╣╠══
paravati ══╣╠══
I have been there before.

I was with a man for a long time, and our relationship began to die and I felt much the same way that you are describing.

He was very generous with his affection; it wasn't that. I just didn't care about receiving it at all. I didn't want him to touch me. I ended up feeling almost repulsed by the thought of it, and even the very sight of him, after a while.

I ended up realizing much later, after we went through this horrible, years long breakup, that the problem wasn't ME. I used to think it was. I used to think, "If I was any kind of GOOD woman, I'd be grateful for this and that, or I'd be able to feel love back for him when he does this and that," or whatever.

But the problem was US, and that we didn't respect each other. We weren't meeting each other's needs at all - He demanded a lot of physical affection and reassurance, while I just mostly wanted to be left alone. I wanted someone who'd work and make money and not have to support us both on my efforts alone, and he wanted to be a househusband. (And he wasn't any good at that, either, so it didn't work in any case).

Anyway, I lost respect for him over the years we were together. And without respect, there could be no love. I just am not that kind of person. I would look at him and feel embarrassed for him and by him, and sit there not respecting him at all... and then he'd want to touch me and my skin would crawl.

It took a long time for us to finally realize we weren't "good" for each other. We tried all kinds of ways of "fixing things" and really gave it a good effort. He was a terrible person though, and in the end, that just made it impossible for any of our efforts to work - I just could not get over how I felt about him as a person, and thusly, couldn't respect and love him any more.

It still feels like MY failure, though, sometimes.

But now I'm with my Handsomeface, and for the first time in my life, I'm with someone I respect fully. There's nothing about him that I despise or get embarrassed by, and that turns me on like nothing I've ever felt before.

The only advice I can offer you is to look inside yourself and your relationship, and look for the qualities that make a relationship really work. Friendship is key; so is trust, and history, and then along the bottom line of it all must be mutual respect and consideration.

I don't want to tell you "It sounds like it's over" because I don't know you or him or anything about your relationship. I can only say that if that respect is gone, there can BE no love.. Because I've had that happen to me in my life before. And it's not YOUR failure. If he is no longer respectable in your eyes, it isn't your fault. It may not even be HIS fault, either. You just both might have changed and now your expectations are different.

But if you DO have that respect for him, then you can build back up to the other parts. Especially if you want to. There is hope, and you must communicate with him about these things.

Good luck, and I'm sending love your way.
belenen ══╣gentle╠══
But the problem was US, and that we didn't respect each other.
That really rang true for me -- I feel strongly that he doesn't respect me, but I can't figure out how or in what area, since it's nothing obvious. And maybe my feeling is based on my past experiences rather than his actions... but whatever the case, thank you for saying that because it helped me find the real issue.

I have a lot of respect for him -- but now that I am thinking on it, I may not be good at showing it (since he seems to be convinced that I DON'T respect him). That may be the problem with both of us...

Your comment was (obviously) very helpful, and I really appreciate you sharing your heart with me. Thank you. ♥
lorelei_sakti ══╣Final Fantasy╠══
I'm so sorry for your situation. I can't offer any advice, since I've never even had a husband, but I will pray for you.
belenen ══╣gentle╠══
thank you, that means a lot to me. ♥
mscrescendos ══╣╠══
I love you. God loves you. I promise, no matter what, it will all be alright. You're in my prayers..and I mean that.
belenen ══╣loving╠══
thank you so much. ♥ I can't express how much that means to me. *hugs*
12thknight ══╣╠══
My thoughts are with you. ::hug::
belenen ══╣gentle╠══
*hugs back*
eternitywaiting ══╣darc╠══
Sweetie, if you want to talk, my phone will be charged tomorrow afternoon, call me anytime. I will try my absolute best to keep it glued to my side. You can also try my home number (410 426 3743) if you don't have luck with the cell.

I'm reluctant to go into a lengthy comment, because I don't want to hurt you, and I think I have a tendancy to come across as kind of insensitive online. But although they're totally different, you know I've been through my share of marriage difficulties too, and I hope you'll let me be here for you now.

Don't for a minute think I'm joking when I say this: you are always welcome in my home if you need a place to take a break. Seriously, I don't care if I get a phone call at 3am saying, "I'm at the airport, come pick me up," out of the clear blue. My house is a little (lot) messy at the moment, but I'll get it cleaned up lightning fast and make room for you in a heartbeat if you want.

I don't want to give advice...but I'm here if you need me. Anytime. For anything.

I love you.
belenen ══╣curvygirl -- belly love╠══
I love love love love love you Anika my friend. It makes me almost cry when I think how wonderful life would be if you lived nearby... and it makes me miss you so much.

Thank you for loving me. I love you too, so much. ♥
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on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.