I need some advice/support anything

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2003
I need some advice/support anything
6
Mon, 04-19-2004 - 12:02pm

Hi I need some to vent, need advice and a shoulder to cry on I just can't believe this and have NO IDEA how to handle it. Here it goes, I've been divorced for 9 months, seperated from ex for 13-14 months, I met my now husband through work (we were both truck drivers for the same comp. I worked weekends and he full time but I'd usually run with a group of the guys him one of them) we started to see eachother the week I moved out he had helped me move and I definately had no intentions of becoming so attached to someone that quickly but I did (I had been married for 10 years but ex and I dated since I was 15, I'm now 33). Anyway my DH is a very protective person and my ex would routinely call me and harrass me one minute, say he was going to kill himself another, he'd threatened to kill ex and myself (that happened once) he'd call and say how much he loved me etc etc etc. Needless to say my DH had enough and the threats would go back and forth. Well my ex will call and just want to chit chat with me (usually will not call about the kids) he'll sob because his girlfriend and him broke up or talk about trucking (he is a truck driver, and DH is a truck driver and I was a truck driver we all actually worked for the same company at the start of all this). Well I usually will just be nice and talk back to him, we've been through the "don't ever call again unless its about the kids" thing a ton of times but he'll still call to chit chat. A week ago we had to go to court, so he called all upset because him and his girlfriend broke up, so he asked if I'd go out to lunch afterward I said I'll think about it. Well when I actually saw him and we talked a little at court I decided I couldn't stand to be around him so I said no on the lunch well when we left the court he grabbed me and tried to hug me, I pushed him away. Well seeing as I'm the type of person that don't keep anything to myself to my hubby I told him and he was PISSED. Well we got into a fight (hes a long haul trucker gone 2 weeks so he's not even at home) because then the next day my ex called and said he was going to be in the area and wanted to meet me and the kids at the park I said fine I'll drop off the kids for a little while I had someone coming to the house to take my dog. Well I found out later my DH just thought my ex was trying to get back with me and his mind just went crazy (he's had this happen before to him). He got really pissed and called my ex and said a whole lot of crap to him (ex said he threatened to kill him if he came near me, DH said no he didn't say that. I do know my DH can forget things he says and could have). Heres the BIG problem, my ex still has a relationship with MY dad and MY grandmother (my family has always been more of a family to him than his own), well I found out today my stupid ex called my dad and told him what my DH did. I just got the 3rd degree from my dad about it (oh my ex has ran to my parents for everything that has happened during this divorce).

Jennifer F.

Love The One Your With!

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2003
Mon, 04-19-2004 - 12:40pm
Oh Jennifer....

First of all, you must be feeling quite confused, angry, resentful, and completely unable to get control of the situation. I know without the guidance of a solid support group or counselor this might be really hard, but you need to focus in on you. Mentally put your DH and EX and even your family outside your boundaries. You can not control your ex or what he does, or your family and what they do, or even your DH, but it sounds like a group of people who are all overstepping boundaries.

If you have told your ex that the only conversing you will do with him is that which pertains to the kids, and this has been stated a "ton" of times, well, then someone did not follow through. You have the power and control to quietly end any conversation that does fall into that guideline. You may have to practice in the mirror, but when he turns the conversation away from the kids, you need to say, "if this does not pertain to the children, then our conversation has ended, and you need to respect that"...then you say goodbye if it's on the telephone, or you leave the room if it's in person. You must do this again and again without waivering. If you can become a woman with a voice (we do tend to lose our voices), then the people around you will also react differently. Remember that it is about you. It is about you being a good woman, a good wife, a good mother, a good daughter, all the roles you have, it is about you being the best.

Secondarily, because these two men and your family have not been treating you with the repsect you deserve, you need to look inside yourself and find out why. At 33, isn't about time that you find the old wounds, heal them, and become the person you want to be? Not the person these other people expect you to be.

Don't point the finger at others. It is a waste of time and takes away all opportunity to change. I don't think you are a "bad" person either. I think you have learned some less than desirable relational habits, which are usually caused by things you have no control over. The great thing is? You can change you. You have complete power over how you speak, how you act, and how you react.

Jumping right into another relationship, without really discovering what happened the first time around so you can avoid it, is so important. My bf and I are still working on it (we were both married for more than 20 years) after 6 years and individual and couples therapy. Well, actually, it is an on going project, self discovery. It doesn't just happen.

Good Luck....I certainly hope things calm down, for your sake as well as for the kids sake....you don't want to continue the cycle into their lives.

Pam

Pam

The choices we make in thought, word and deed inevitably return to us in kind.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2003
Mon, 04-19-2004 - 8:34pm

Well its all gotten worst as the days worn on. Husband and I are not speaking, I tried talking to him (of course hes on the road won't be home till Friday or Sat., tried talking to my mom-oh DH and I should go to counseling if he's so insecure. I just don't care at this point, NOT one person as ususal stopped to listen to ME everybodys got the "this IS how it should be done or taken care of", but who gives a crap about how I feel. Then to add to it last year my ex's car (brand new car he ran out and bought within 2 months of my leaving) caught fire and burned to the ground. Well we had suspected he did it from the start (all 3 of us worked for same trucking company and things starting getting around, he blamed my DH, at time boyfriend, and anyone who may have been around). Well during the next couple of weeks my DH had threatned sucide a few times and left messages for me (oh I want you back I'm going to kill myself etc.). My DH called and asked the police and fire department about the car (he'd started saying he was going to blame my DH for doing it because they'd already been close to duking it out a few times). Anyway the chief of the fire department said it was awful suspicious, so the insurance company did a report, cops called myself and DH (oh my ex had told a mutual aquantance, or joked about it, that he thought about setting it on fire because he couldn't afford it). Anyway, on Friday my ex told me he did fool around with the car, it just wasn't supposed to happen that day (once again he was actually planning to go sky diving and just not pull the shoot open or something). Now here I know this information, like an idiot I let it slip when I was talking to my DH, he believes I should turn it in part of me agrees. I know my ex loves these kids but I just don't think he's right in the head, he still had no right going to my dad about my DH and causing harsh feelings. My dad just called we talked for awhile and I told him the whole story about my ex asking me out to lunch and trying to hug me then coming up here that weekend and he started to understand why my DH was having the feelings he's having. I also told him he has NO idea what it is like to be the "other" spouse and try to build a life with all the extra baggage. And now part of me wants to take care of this thing with the car but on the other hand I don't want to see him go to jail (but he still blames my DH for causing all the problems with the insurance co. when he LIED to them to begin with). Of course my parents say just let that go, hubby says call the athorities. Gee I just feel like taking my kids and running to a remote island.

Jennifer F.

Love The One Your With!

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2003
Tue, 04-20-2004 - 9:28am
So, can you somehow remove your "self" from the situation? I believe there is a shred of good in your mother's advice. The missing factor to me being that I believe the best way couples counseling works, is if it is in concert with individual counseling.

I am "hearing" shreds of deceit on your part. Letting something "slip" to you dh. Having information that you were keeping from him. There is no room in a marriage for anything less than complete honesty. Without honesty, trust and faith fall by the wayside. Without trust and faith, you no longer feel safe in the relationship and fears take over.

What I am "hearing" are very toxic emotions. Emotions that have taken on a life of their own, and you feel you have no control over them. Behind all anger is fear. Anger is merely a reaction to fear. Everytime I feel angry, I ask myself, "what am I so afraid of that I am reacting with inappropriate anger". Usually, it takes the edge off to say "because of what you are doing i am in fear of.....(losing you, that's my big one)", My bf can take my fear alot better than my anger. Anger makes him defensive, fear makes him compassionate.

You are still focused on all these other people and what they are doing, when you need to be focused on you, and what you are doing.

Pam

Pam

The choices we make in thought, word and deed inevitably return to us in kind.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2003
Tue, 04-20-2004 - 10:52am

Hi Pam, well the whats I'm scared about ? is pretty easy (the same one I've dealt with ALL of my life). Afraid to be alone, afraid to hurt other peoples feelings and concerned about what they will think of me. I was with my ex since I was 15 (gee no other guys were looking at me he did after 9 months we started sleeping together and when my mom found out she was completely devasted). Anyway I felt like I HAD to stay with him (always taught you don't sleep with anyone until your married). Yeah ex and I had good times but it was mostly fighting and I was MISERABLE, how could I be so stupid to throw so much away on this person, I had dreams of working on an Arabian Horse farm had one in Kentucky that was going to hire me right out of high school, was going to go to a Horse college, I cant believe I threw all this away. Now my DH is trying to control me told me that if I don't say anything about the car issue its going to "ruin" us hes said this before, my parents (whom I've always had to please, plus I always had to please my ex, my grandmother etc, everyone but me I just put myself on the back burner so I wouldn't "hurt" anyone. When I finally decided I was going to go through with a divorce I was on depression meds that made me make bad decisions (but good too I don't think I would've had the guts to go through the divorce) but I also cheated with my ex, I met the guy while I was driving truck on the weekend, we delivered to the same store and just started talking about our miserable lives, man it felt good he listened to me and related within 2 weeks I started a relationship with him (hey I knew my ex would definately leave me then). My ex went and told my parents and 80 year old grandmother (actually the day he did this the night before was the FIRST time I slept with the guy, my ex had no idea except that I told him there was someone else but we were NOT sexually involved) So since that point my ex has manuplated my family into "believing" him (actually my mom will not speak to him). I tried to explain to my dad last night that he has no idea what its like to be the "other" spouse, and I think he may finally realized how much it hurts to hear them say they still converse with my ex even after all hes done (I'm not saying I made wise decisions, God knows I didn't). Anyway I would love to get into counseling but last year I was royally screwed by one I seen and we also don't have insurance or money to do it right now. Today is my DHs bday and I still haven't even talked to him, I'm so upset by the fact that he said our marriage isn't going to work, hes run way to many times and I feel now that he still wants to "search" for that "perfect" women (its obvious thats what hes done for 20 years). I'm not really worried he'll cheat but he has no right to say stuff like that, and he has no right not listening to my feelings either. Thanks for your replys I really appreciate it. Oh yeah I TOTALLY agree about the not hiding anything from your spouse that is kinda the whole trouble here. Because I do not keep it a secret about what my ex says or does or that I've talked to him and I tell my DH thats where all the trouble has come from. And my mom and dad are both telling me to keep it to myself and not tell my DH so he wont go off the deep end, do you see where I'm torn.


Jennifer F.

Love The One Your With!

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2003
Tue, 04-20-2004 - 11:40am
Jen,

Yes I do understand where you are coming from. And the first thing you have to do is take some time off from you parents. That could be your catalyst. If you know in your heart that keeping things from your spouse is deadly to the marriage, and they are telling you to do that, who's best interests are they looking after? PARENTS ARE NOT PERFECT! Sometimes, they give advice that is just WRONG! You, Jen, are an adult that can think for yourself, and decide things for yourself, without having to answer to them.

A little of my background, so you will understand where I am coming from. First of all I am 49YO, I was seperated and divorced now for 5 years. I have two sons, 11 and 15, who live with me, but see their father regularly. I was married for 21 years and had my first child 9 years into the marriage.

My ex was a virgin when we became friends in his freshman year of college. I was two years older, and NOT a virgin. In fact, I had lived with someone and screwed around massively, doing drugs and drinking. Nothing to be proud of from me. I was in abusive relationships and was a total mess. My mother, told me to go back to church, join the choir, be a "good" girl. So, I did. I met my ex in the choir. We were friends (he didn't kiss me for three years, even though I was available (this should have warned me). We eventually had sex, and he immediately asked me to marry him, because he was a virgin and thought that was the right thing to do. My mother said "Oh, you won't find anyone better." So, even though I had my own dreams and doubts, I went through with it. Cheated on him within 6 months, he drank and did drugs and so did I. But we managed to have the "good face" for public. Anyway, fast forward, two kids concieved in drunken stupors, and massive misery. I had a child and I decided the drugs and drinking had to stop, but things remained miserable. I called my mother and told her I needed to get out (I was about your age), and she said "No, you can't solve anything by leaving." Once again I listened to her advice and stayed.

I tried counseling a number of times, but nothing seemed to help. I held the same job for 15 years, so committment was not my problem. Fear of abandonment, fear of being alone with two small children, an alienated family and no friends or money did scare me. My oldest son was seeing a psychiatrist by the time he was 9 because the misery was affecting him as well. The youngest one, too. My ex thought all this was "normal". Well, I fell in love with another man and so, went back to counseling for myself (my ex does not "believe" in counseling). I realized that my ex was so depressed and had so many of his own issues, that he would not even work on, and so I was either going to have to live with that for the rest of my life, seeing the damage being done to children, or I could get out. I got out. My family sided with him (he was in their eyes perfect). I lost all friends and family, but I had my children and I could turn their lives around. Eventually, with the help of a support group, a great therapist and Bob, things began to change. I began to change. I found my voice, I told my mother, I didn't need her approval and that I was an adult who could make my own decisions, and if she didn't believe that, then she must feel like she did a piss poor job at raising me. I told her I knew that I was doing what was right for myself and my children. I would say it took about two years for her to accept that what I had done was the best. We are better friends, and she realizes I no longer need parenting. She also has had a chance to see my ex in the real light.

Bob...the man I hope to marry. Not the perfect man for my mother....but the prefect man for me. And how much better things are because of that. Please understand that I know parents who think they are the voice of God when it comes to advice. They are not and you need to learn that no one can control you.

Once again, you are an adult, you can only control yourself, but what a gift that is. You can change you. You don't have to do anything because of anyone else. Find your "self". You also need to know that you are never alone. As long as you are your own best friend, you don't need much else. If you are a good friend to yourself, then you can be a good friend to your DH.

Pam

Pam

The choices we make in thought, word and deed inevitably return to us in kind.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-09-2003
Tue, 04-20-2004 - 1:14pm

Pam do you mind emailing me off line and chatting that way so we don't do this over the board. You got

Jennifer F.

Love The One Your With!