Guilt, Control, and the Ex
Find a Conversation
|Tue, 08-20-2013 - 6:19pm|
Hello, all...never been on this board before. I suppose I was hoping I didn't have to, but things have got so crazy that I need some advice from someone who may have been there.
My DH has an ex that controls him with guilt and his kids. Guilt because he was the one who asked for the divorce (and apparently for numerous things that he seems to still be making up for that happened during their marriage), and control because she uses her relationship with their kids to keep him close. It's a very subtle thing...my DH tells me things that she has said or done so casually like it's no big deal, and I look at him like he's crazy...like, why would you allow her to say that to you? Why would you agree with her? I think after so many years with his ex, her actions just seems normal.
The result is that he can't ever seem to let go of his relationship with his ex enough to have a truly full and connected relationship with me. At least, that's how it feels. Don't get me wrong...my own parents divorce was WWIII, so I don't wish that on him or his ex. But after three years, I certainly expected to feel as if his connection would be lessened toward her and strengthened toward me. I feel as though if his ex and I were both in a crisis, he wouldn't hesitate to go to her side first, as though he somehow owes her more than me.
And if you are wondering about their children, they are not babies anymore...they are both in college, although living at home with the ex. It just seems as though she has DH convinced that without her to act as some sort of emotional intermediary, he would be a bad father...that he would "do it wrong." She calls him all the time to let him know how the kids are doing...for example, "DS had a bad day at college today, so make sure that when you talk to him, you don't bring up his English class." And then he doesn't! I tell my DH that he is a good father and more than capable of having a direct relationship with his kids without checking in with his ex to see what's happening with them first, but it does no good. Again, I think it's a habit that is hard to break. But so long as he thinks he needs her for this, he'll never let go.
I'm not sure there is a solution to this, but I thought I'd throw it out there. How have any of you 2nds loosened (not severed) the ties between your DH and his ex?