Advice needed!

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-01-2006
Advice needed!
6
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 2:33am

This might be a little long, but please bear with me! Any advice would help because I am literally losing sleep over it. Here's my situation: I fell in love with my neighbor since childhood when I was about 20; since then we dated (it was on and off because he was in the military). We began getting serious when I was about 22 and he was out of the service, so we decided to move to another state that had more job opportunities for him and better weather..it was really my idea. Anyway, we get there and me, being the social person I am began meeting new people from the very first day. He has always been quiet and reserved, and generally negative towards meeting new people, something I couldn't stand but I wouldn't let it stop me from socializing and I'd go out anyway. 

When one of my girlfriends came to visit, she introduced me to a friend..little did I know I would wind up falling for him, and hard. When me and "Joe" first started talking, I was still with my boyfriend. He was completely obsessed with me. He knew I wasn't single, but he'd get me flowers, he's post love songs on my Facebook wall, he'd text me constantly..and oddly enough I began to become fascinated with him. He was one of the happiest, most outgoing guys I had ever known and his smile would light up a room. Everyone loved him--he was the complete opposite of my boyfriend who my friends found to be irritable and possessive. I began to seriously consider leaving my boyfriend for him, but I knew I couldn't just leave as he would be crushed and feel completely alone in a state that I had him move to. So I decided to just wait until our lease was up in a few months and then I'd find a way to break it off. 

I began to secretly see Joe and go out dancing with him; I told him how much I wanted to be with him but the situation made it impossible to leave my boyfriend. He was not right emotionally and had many symptoms of PTSD--including angry outbursts in which he would punch holes in the wall and damage things. Well, come to find out I was 9 weeks pregnant with my boyfriend's baby. When I found out, I was in utter shock. I had gone to the Dr. with a bad cold and was taking antibiotics, they ran blood tests and called me about 2 days later telling me I was pregnant. I completely freaked. I just wanted out of the entire situation. I called up my parents and said I needed to come home, and I traveled back home to be able to think about everything away from everyone. 

My boyfriend was not supportive at all during my pregnancy, in fact Joe was more supportive than my boyfriend. I decided that since I was keeping the baby, I would try and work things out with my boyfriend. I convinced myself that we could make this work and I was committed to it. We had a beautiful baby girl and immediately he was in love with her. He is really a great dad--it has been two years and I have to say I'm impressed with how great he is with his daughter. He has a really good job and is an excellent provider; it has allowed me to stay at home with our daughter. A year after she was born, I was still thinking about Joe. No matter what I just couldn't seem to get him out of my mind, and it was driving me crazy. I decided me and my boyfriend should go and get married-- as if things would change and I would forget about Joe. 

I had my reservations, though. I knew my boyfriend's PTSD issues, but I hoped that he would resolve them. I knew that occasionally he would get very upset and scare my daughter by acting in a completely psychotic manner..yelling, cursing, punching holes in the wall, overall trying to intimidate me. But I was never intimidated; I was angry that he was upsetting our daughter. Well, we have gone through quite a lot since we have been married (almost a year), but nothing was as bad as his most recent outburst. I noticed a pattern; he throws these tantrums right before one of us has to leave for a few days to go somewhere..this just so happened that he had to leave us for two months for training for his job. In about a period of a half hour, he had yelled at me every name in the book in front of our daughter, ripped his shirt off of himself, and tried committing suicide THREE times. They were half-hearted attempts, but still, for a two year old to see those things is not good. He tried slitting his wrists with a knife (and did draw blood) broke a wine glass and tried slitting his throat, then took the knife and cut the cord of the vacuum, went into the garage, where I saw him hanging. It was really ridiculous, the entire thing. 

To make matters worse, I am pregnant again. Yay. This past event has really made me wishing it was 3 years ago, so I could have a second chance to do what I hadn't done. Joe is still on my mind; I'm not sure if I am still on his, though. We stopped talking about 3 months ago. I am so confused..counseling does not seem to help my husband, medications did not work.. I'm really at a loss. I am feeling so tempted to just leave and go meet up with Joe and start over. We secretly met up last October. I thought it would give me some sort of closure, but of course it didn't. We went out and had an amazing time just like back in the old days. I am torn because 95% of the time my husband is a great guy and such a good dad. That other 5% though, that really concerns me. Any thoughts/similar experiences? Should I stay? Should I leave? I'm afraid my heart just isn't here anymore, if it was even here to begin with. I'm 26 years old and feel like my life is wasting away..

Avatar for Kendahke1
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-09-2012
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 7:33am

sunnyside4now wrote:
<p>This might be a little long, but please bear with me! Any advice would help because I am literally losing sleep over it. Here's my situation: I fell in love with my neighbor since childhood when I was about 20; since then we dated (it was on and off because he was in the military). We began getting serious when I was about 22 and he was out of the service, so we decided to move to another state that had more job opportunities for him and better weather..it was really my idea. Anyway, we get there and me, being the social person I am began meeting new people from the very first day. He has always been quiet and reserved, and generally negative towards meeting new people, something I couldn't stand but I wouldn't let it stop me from socializing and I'd go out anyway. </p><p>When one of my girlfriends came to visit, she introduced me to a friend..little did I know I would wind up falling for him, and hard. When me and "Joe" first started talking, I was still with my boyfriend. He was completely obsessed with me. He knew I wasn't single, but he'd get me flowers, he's post love songs on my Facebook wall, he'd text me constantly..and oddly enough I began to become fascinated with him. He was one of the happiest, most outgoing guys I had ever known and his smile would light up a room. Everyone loved him--he was the complete opposite of my boyfriend who my friends found to be irritable and possessive. I began to seriously consider leaving my boyfriend for him, but I knew I couldn't just leave as he would be crushed and feel completely alone in a state that I had him move to. So I decided to just wait until our lease was up in a few months and then I'd find a way to break it off. </p><p>I began to secretly see Joe and go out dancing with him; I told him how much I wanted to be with him but the situation made it impossible to leave my boyfriend. He was not right emotionally and had many symptoms of PTSD--including angry outbursts in which he would punch holes in the wall and damage things. Well, come to find out I was 9 weeks pregnant with my boyfriend's baby. When I found out, I was in utter shock. I had gone to the Dr. with a bad cold and was taking antibiotics, they ran blood tests and called me about 2 days later telling me I was pregnant. I completely freaked. I just wanted out of the entire situation. I called up my parents and said I needed to come home, and I traveled back home to be able to think about everything away from everyone. </p><p>My boyfriend was not supportive at all during my pregnancy, in fact Joe was more supportive than my boyfriend. I decided that since I was keeping the baby, I would try and work things out with my boyfriend. I convinced myself that we could make this work and I was committed to it. We had a beautiful baby girl and immediately he was in love with her. He is really a great dad--it has been two years and I have to say I'm impressed with how great he is with his daughter. He has a really good job and is an excellent provider; it has allowed me to stay at home with our daughter. A year after she was born, I was still thinking about Joe. No matter what I just couldn't seem to get him out of my mind, and it was driving me crazy. I decided me and my boyfriend should go and get married-- as if things would change and I would forget about Joe. </p><p>I had my reservations, though. I knew my boyfriend's PTSD issues, but I hoped that he would resolve them. I knew that occasionally he would get very upset and scare my daughter by acting in a completely psychotic manner..yelling, cursing, punching holes in the wall, overall trying to intimidate me. But I was never intimidated; I was angry that he was upsetting our daughter. Well, we have gone through quite a lot since we have been married (almost a year), but nothing was as bad as his most recent outburst. I noticed a pattern; he throws these tantrums right before one of us has to leave for a few days to go somewhere..this just so happened that he had to leave us for two months for training for his job. In about a period of a half hour, he had yelled at me every name in the book in front of our daughter, ripped his shirt off of himself, and tried committing suicide THREE times. They were half-hearted attempts, but still, for a two year old to see those things is not good. He tried slitting his wrists with a knife (and did draw blood) broke a wine glass and tried slitting his throat, then took the knife and cut the cord of the vacuum, went into the garage, where I saw him hanging. It was really ridiculous, the entire thing. </p><p>To make matters worse, I am pregnant again. Yay. This past event has really made me wishing it was 3 years ago, so I could have a second chance to do what I hadn't done. Joe is still on my mind; I'm not sure if I am still on his, though. We stopped talking about 3 months ago. I am so confused..counseling does not seem to help my husband, medications did not work.. I'm really at a loss. I am feeling so tempted to just leave and go meet up with Joe and start over. We secretly met up last October. I thought it would give me some sort of closure, but of course it didn't. We went out and had an amazing time just like back in the old days. I am torn because 95% of the time my husband is a great guy and such a good dad. That other 5% though, that really concerns me. Any thoughts/similar experiences? Should I stay? Should I leave? I'm afraid my heart just isn't here anymore, if it was even here to begin with. I'm 26 years old and feel like my life is wasting away..</p>

it seems every time you came to a crossroads of whether to leave your husband or stay, you chose to stay with him.  Now you've created a second child with him which will make it harder for you to leave.

You need to just leave Joe alone for good. Dealing with him does not help anything in your situation.  Cheating on your husband that you willingly married is not the answer.  You had the chance to not bind your life to him and you chose to anyway.

You need to decide if divorce is that you want to do and if it is, then to make a plan to divorce your husband. You will also need to prepare yourself for your husband to pull out his epic manipulation game, promising to deliver the sun and stars if you just won't leave.  But you will need to be firm and insist that a considerable time of intensive therapy, consistently attended by him, transpires before you will consider reconciliation---because talk is cheap.  Any person will say anything to not have to give up what is comfortable to them.  It's consistent action over a course of time that will prove that he's willing to do what HE needs to do in this situation.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 10:43am

I think you need to get out of this situation for the sake of your DD and soon to be born baby--it's not safe.  You don't know whether he is going to go from attempting suicide to trying to harm you or the kids.  Right now Joe is fantasy man.  You are probably idealizing him because you are with a man who was never right for you in the first place and you just married because you had a baby together.  Get your divorce done if that's what you decide to do and then you can think about finding someone else.  It's not fair to be seeing another man behind your DH's back even if he is not a great DH.  It is also not his fault that he has PTSD from his military service, but he needs to be doing as much as possible to deal with it--he should still be going to counseling and taking medication.  There is also some evidence that many soldiers who were diagnosed with PTSD actually have traumatic brain injuries--there was a program on this on 60 Minutes recently, which someone told me about, but I haven't watched yet.  Maybe he should go to the Veterans Hospital and ask someone to check to see if he has a brain injury--unfortunately if he does, it's not something that is curable. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2009
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 10:53am

You made a choice to be with a person that was quiet, antisocial, and the complete opposite of yourself.  YOU made that choice.  Now, matters have been made worse because thanks to our wonderful government he's out of the military, and has PTSD......which makes his earlier problems even worse.  Then you meet another man, who's more to your liking, he's social, he likes to go dancing, etc.  Can't say much for him.......he doesn't respect another man's relationship, but he enjoyed the good times.  You're not happy at home, but you get pregnant........are you sure which one is the father???  Is your husband sure she's his?  So you have someone's baby, and you decide to marry a man you don't love anymore, a man who has emotional problems, knowing that you really want another guy........who incidentally doesn't seem very interested anymore.  You had a secret meeting a few months ago, looking for closure?  Sorry, a good time and sex doesn't give closure.......your mind gives you closure when you accept that he's only looking for an occasional romp!  You need to do anything and everything you can to get your husband the help he needs.....Contact the VA.......they have excellent programs to help PTSD.....and if he doesn't accept help, then see a divorce lawyer.  Nothing is going to change in your life unless you start doing what you need to do.  Forget the other guy, you'd just be going from the frying pan into the fire.  You don't need a man, you need stability in your life, and the life of your children.  If he won't get the help to find that stability, then it's time to end the marriage, and concentrate on raising some healthy children.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-01-2006
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 3:09pm

He actually was diagnosed with TBI. He was in a pretty bad explosion when a bomb blew up under his truck, and he was knocked unconscious. I am not able to leave him right now as I am currently staying at home with our daughter; but I am going to follow in my mother's footsteps and get my real estate license as soon as the baby's born. It will leave me with income as well as a flexible schedule for the kids, and I will be able to leave if things do not improve. For now we are OK because he is away for a few months, but I suppose no amount of therapy will help his TBI & PTSD when he returns. Thank you so much for your response; I had not even thought about the TBI until you mentioned it. I need to put things into perspective and do what is best for our children.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-14-2001
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 11:41pm

No matter what the reason for his behavior, you need to leave.  Things may be great 95% of the time, but that other 5% is doing lifelong damage to your child.  She's growing up in an environment where daddy doing horrific, violent, self-mutilating things is normal.  Imagine that.  Growing up in a home where you just accept this is how things are.  To her, this is how everyone lives, it's just the way things are.  Can you imagine seeing those things as a child, growing up having to deal with that fear and terror?  Watching a man who is violent towards himself and is violent towards you.  Her homelife sets the standard for what women should expect and accept and how men are.  

He's gone for two months.  Great.  It seems that this would be a great time to ask your parents for help, move back with them and get back on your feet.  For your sake and for the sake of your children, leave now, the sooner you get started, the sooner you'll be back on your feet.


~ cl-2nd_life

cl-2nd_
Avatar for lizmvr
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-06-2001
Fri, 06-14-2013 - 6:35pm

I agree with 2nd life that while your husband is gone currently, you really should move back with your parents. You and your children need better adult role models and hopefully your parents will provide this for all of you. Let go of Joe--that whole situation is bad news. The more energy you put into thinking about that scummy guy that would rather be with a cheating woman than find a single available one on his own, the more you are robbing your children and yourself of stability. That is not fair, and you need to stop it.

While you say that you believe no amount of therapy will help your husband, you need to find your own therapist, in my opinion. You haven't made the best choices in the interest of yourself, your kids, or your husband, and I think a therapist will help you sort out why and how to help you make healthier decisions.

Liz


Clinical Research Associate


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