Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A little life contemplation...

Hi all...

How's it going?  I was going to do some more blogging prompts but I find myself sitting here with my head in my hands contemplating the meaning of life - so perhaps I'll start there.

Okay - maybe not the meaning of life but the future of my marriage.  See... the rest of the world knows my husband as St. Dan, the husband all other husbands are measured against (I kid you not).  But you've all mostly only heard about how suckish he is.  And both parts are true.  He's a good an honorable man - but he sucks at emotions and connection worse than I do and that is seriously saying something.  And I'm at a place in my life where I want and need and demand emotions and connection.

The truth is - I've changed, not him.  And so far he can't keep up.  For a long time he wasn't willing to even try and was, in fact, completely angry that I'd even suggest needing something from him beyond being a good guy who can keep our schedule extraordinarily well.  I need love and connection and emotions and trust and the safe place to come home to - the place that is warm beyond all others.  The problem is - he's got no idea how to give me any of that - in fact, I'm not sure he even knows what that means.  But there's a bigger problem.  I've been the one doing all the work for so long... where I reach out to him and he slaps my hand away, mad that I would bother him in such a way.

I've gotten amazingly stubborn - completely refusing to do anything else.  I can't be the one that reaches out anymore.  I can only bang my head against a wall so many times - and I passed that number a long time ago.  But... and here's the bigger problem...  It's just occurred to me that we might be at an impasse - at the least we have a serious problem.

1) I'm not sure he's capable of doing anything.  He's not sure what to do.  He's not sure what I want.  He has no idea how to give it to me even if he did understand it.  He's deathly afraid of failure - enough so that it keeps him from trying sometimes.

2) I don't think I trust him enough to hear/trust/see/feel whatever he might do.  My walls towards him are big and thick.

Don't get me wrong - we're getting along pretty damn well at the moment - but I don't think I'm in a position to really hear anything from him if he could figure out something to do and I don't think he's really in a position to actually do anything anyway.

So if he can't do anything.  And even if he could I couldn't hear/see/feel it.  We're dead in the water.

It turns out - I really want to save my marriage.  And being dead in the water seems like a zero sum gain.  Which means I might just have to break down and do something again.  Of course that scares me too - cuz - really how many times can you reach out only to have your hand bitten off?

But...  I was reading something I'd written a few years ago about how we'd had the best year of our marriage ever - this was 2008-2009.  That's not that fucking long ago.  How did it go from being the best year ever to being the worst??  Lies... hands being bitten off... more lies...

But... what I was writing about - the thing that was working was just a subtle shift by me.  Giving him more power - letting him lead - asking his opinion more.  Nothing earth shattering - it was little stuff and I remember the benefits far outshining the effort by either one of us.  I so don't trust him with me right now - but maybe... just maybe I can give this a try.  It seems pretty low risk and my memory along with what I wrote about it says the payoff was really good.

So there you have it - no writing prompt tonight.  Just a little life contemplation.

7 comments:

Kristin said...

OK, we have also dealt with issues that sound like yours. I found a marriage counselor who does "emotionally focused therapy" and it has *seriously* improved our relationship. There's a book called Hold Me Tight by Sue Johnston that is written in a ridiculously hokey style. But the therapist recommended it, we each read it and then discussed in therapy. Really, really helpful.

We don't go very often to therapy, just every few months now for a tune up. It's not designed to be an open-ended deal where you go forever and ever, it's supposed to be a finite process and then you can go back when you need to check in.

If you're interested, here's a website to find a therapist: http://www.iceeft.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=59&Itemid=54

Good luck. It's so hard, this marriage thing. But if you want to stay together, I really did find this incredibly helpful.

Banded Cupcake said...

I am intrigued by your post and there are a few striking similarities that I've been feeling for a while. Good luck & keep us updated :)

Dawnya said...

You said it in this post...you want to save your marriage. You know that the only way to do that is for you to make the shift. As tired as you are of always being the one to make the adjustment. Yoi know in your heart of hearts that it has to be you or it won't get done. I know that you will make the right decision. In the mean and in between remember that I love you more than icecream.

Manda said...

Interesting thoughts on giving him more of the lead. Considering this is our problem too. And when you mentioned you don't trust him to take it almost... its what I've been dealing with. I don't trust him. I'm afraid he will screw it up and I'm left cleaning up the mess. We have been doing counseling recently. I want him to take more lead but for some reason, deep down.. the control in me to protect myself will not allow that. Its hard being vulnerable, even in a marriage. I hope you get there... especially since you want to work on it. ((HUGS))

Stephanie said...

You know my whole view on this and how I support you 100%. You are my idol. :)

Laura Belle said...

I think you've gotten figured out, you just don't know if you can handle it....well, I think you can. Heck, I KNOW you can. Every relationship is a tug and pull. I wish my husband was more emotionally tuned into me also, but its never going to happen. Ever. So, I accepted it, but I still try to involve him in things that 'could' get an emotional response from him. And I've found over the years I've worn him down. He starts to do more than he used to. I don't know if that makes sense. But as Dawnya said: You WANT to save your marriage. So just try. And if you get hurt.....well, try again, and again, until hopefully he 'gets it'. Good luck sister! {HUGS}

Bonnie said...

I am hoping you and the hubby come upon easier, more loving times.