Excellent article. I've undergone 8 years of this behavior from my husband. My confidence was destroyed & the love I have for him is no longer there. I always wondered if my putting distance between him & myself was right or wrong. I knew I had to do something & the only thing I could do was put distance between us for my emotional sanity. A little over a year ago, I moved into the guest bedroom & have been sleeping there since. To share a bed with a selfish, uncaring, insulting man, was more than I was willing to tolerate any longer. Of course, he's blaming me for all his problems. It was hard at first, but now I enjoy my sleeping alone. I have the entire bed all to myself & I don't have to lay next to a man hoping he will hold me or talk with me. I have removed that from my life. I also stopped going anywhere with him publicly. I know this sounds rash, but I am sick & tired of being humiliated in our small, gossipy community. I am better off without the humiliation. I have realized I want to stay in this relationship as I am older & do not want to move out of a 'secure' home even though the environment is distasteful. I no longer worry about whether he is cheating on me or not because the fear of love lost is almost gone. This may sound harsh or hard, but this has been 8 years in the making & I became sick & tired of talking myself blue in the face, crying, never ever receiving any comfort whatsoever & believe it or not, after a while, the love is gone. I have found things to do. I no longer associate with the community because everyone thinks I am to blame. It has made me disrespect a lot of people that I grew up with here. My alienating myself from him & the community is still in the works, though it has been over a year. If he can treat me like I am not there & treat other women like he would rather be with them than with me, then fine. I started out telling myself I don't love him. I would say it over & over again. Finally, I am at this point. He can have the other women & he can bad mouth me to boot! I just don't care anymore. He 'acts' as though it bothers him & will mention it occasionally, but I no longer believe him & fall for his antics. I am doing what he does to me - not care! If he doesn't care, then neither will I. In the meantime, I am working on myself, getting close to God, & making an alternate plans for my life such as building friendships outside of this community, going to church, finding something I can do, & possibly traveling places I always wanted to go & visit even though I have to get over my fear of going places alone when the world is so violent. I don't have to work, so I am basically free to do as I please. I recently have told him I want to be buried in my father & mother's family plot out of state. I didn't say it to hurt him. I said it because I have had to put up with his abuse in this life, & even though I will be dead & gone, I just can't stand the thought of being buried next to someone who despises me. I no longer cater to his needs which sounds selfish but not once has he cooked for me or helped me when I was really sick. He doesn't want a marriage, he wants someone to kick around & make fun of. It is not me anymore. I refuse to put myself in a position where he can bully me & I refuse to think about how awful a predicament I am in. I am living with it & getting over it. A man who cannot love is not worth dying for.
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