Tuesday, December 18, 2012

No. You Shouldn't. You're Married.

Marriage has become such a convenience in our society. No wonder the divorce rate is so high. We marry at the height of emotion, leave at the first sign of trouble. Rinse repeat.

We also look the other way when cheating occurs. I've heard it too many times.

"It's none of my business"
"She can do what he wants, she's not my wife"

"Why do you care? He's not your husband."
I care, because he's married. I may not be his wife, but someone is. He is breaking the covenant he made with her. If someone is willing to break what may possibly be the most serious, life-changing promise they will ever make to someone else, why would I ever trust them with... anything?

Regardless of what our society will tell you, if you cheat, or if you are "the other"... it speaks to your character.

I am so sick not only of men & women speaking of their illicit relationships openly, I'm tired of the responses from others being so tolerant of this behavior.

I'm tired of the young married gals on message boards asking questions like:

"My husband has been such a jerk the past few months. There's this other guy that's giving me lots of attention. Do you think I should see what he has to offer?"
Um, no.

Yet, surprisingly (to me anyway), are the responses.

"Why not? As long as you don't DO anything."
"Maybe you should tell your husband about the other guy. Make him jealous. Maybe then he'll start paying attention to you."
"I'm sorry you're so unhappy. If you can find happiness elsewhere, you should go for it"
And on, and on, and on.

By the time I saw the post, it had roughly 20 responses. Most supportive of her idea to check out the other guy. A few indifferent. Not one person who told her to stick it out, try to talk to her husband, seek counseling, etc. Not one. I could have been more eloquent, but my response was simply:

"No, you shouldn't. You're married."
It really is as simple as that.

I'm tired of my friend telling me how she is involved in a "platonic" relationship with a guy friend who happens to be married... except she gets butterflies every time she sees him, he calls & texts her repeatedly, sends her pictures of him (but only when he's traveling on business), and they both have admitted to each other that they have feelings for each other.

I'm tired of her (and others) thinking this is fine because they're not "doing anything".

Yes, they are. They are having an affair. An affair does not require sex.

You are sneaking around behind his wife's back, scheduling your participation in volunteer activities to correspond with each other's schedules, deleting text messaages & emails  & call logs to get rid of the evidence. He has said that if he weren't afraid of losing custody of his son, he would divorce her for you (the oldest line in the book, by the way). You have admitted feelings for one another, and are progressing to deepen the bond between you.

You are having an affair. This has been going on for months. You are one slip, one misjudgement away from it becoming physical.

You are the other woman. He is cheating on his wife.

It does not matter that his wife is a "b****".

He is still married to her. If he's so unhappy, he should divorce her. He's a good dad, he will not lose custody. That's a BS line he's feeding you so he can have his cake and eat it too. If he had any character at all, he would either end it with you, or divorce her.

I am so tired of people looking the other way. Meeting their married friends boyfriends or girlfriends and pretending like everything's okay, like they belong. They do not belong. They are the outsiders.

And when you sit there and treat them as if they are the spouse, and you continue to treat your friend as if they are a fine upstanding person despite knowing their actions, you are as complicit as they are. You are, by your actions, telling them it is okay.

When your friend excuses himself from your event to go screw his girlfriend, and you joke with him about it when he gets back, you are sending him a message that what he's doing is okay.

It's not.

When you go with your married friend to his girlfriend's house, and give her the same salutation you would give his wife, and make no mention of what he is doing, you are sending a message that what they are doing is okay.

It's not.

When you wait until your "friend's" wife leaves to begin flirting with him, and engaging his son, you are telling him that you would be okay with him cheating with you.

It's not okay.

If you're telling your friend that it's okay if she screws a married man because his wife is so evil anyway, you are sending a message that cheating is okay.

It's not.

If we want our marriages to succeed, we have to start treating all marriages seriously. We can no longer tolerate our society treating marriage as a joke. We cannot look the other way while our friends risk losing their wives, custody of their children, and half of their material possessions for a joyride. The fact that so many are willing to do so are troubling.

But more troubling to me is how many are willing to talk about it openly, let it be known, without fear of judgement. Because nobody tells them it's wrong. It's "understandable".

No. No, it's not.

It's stupid.

We cannot treat mistresses and gigolos as if they belong in the family. They don't. They are tearing a family apart, in the name of pleasure.

It's ridiculous.

We have to start taking these things more seriously. We have to begin treating all marriages, not just our own, as the sacred covenant that they are.

This can no longer be the norm. It can't.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

What I want? or what he wants?

So, after a lengthy, and disgruntled, conversation between Jason and myself the other night, the following thought / piece of advice came to mind:

Stop doing things for your spouse that you want done for you, and start doing things for your spouse that they want done.

It seems so simple, but I think we can't be the only ones who make this mistake. And I am as guilty of it as he is. We tend to do things for each other based on what we want, instead of thinking of what the other person wants.

I've even read magazine articles & even marital help books suggesting that if you want your partner to do something for you, you do it for them, and they'll reciprocate. One example that I recall is a book suggesting to women that if they want their husbands to be more romantic, the women should do romantic things for the men, then the husbands will in turn do the same for their wives.
I mean, maybe, right? But if I bring Jason home a dozen roses, I don't think he's likely to think "that was nice, maybe I'll bring Jodi some". He's more likely to think "what in the world made her think I want flowers?".

And besides, when you do what you want but for them, even if it's for them, isn't it still in a way, selfish? Because you're giving them what you want, not what they want. You're not taking the time or effort to think about what they want. You're in a sense taking the easy way out.

Is this making any sense at all?

I hope so. Because for me it was a revelation, and I think it's a really good one.

Stop doing things for your spouse that you actually want done for you, and start doing the things that they want done for them.

This was originally posted on my other blog in 2009. Decided to re-post it over here.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Just Being There

Jason was making plans to attend a professional conference in Alabama, when I mentioned my plans for while he was gone.

And that was met with disappointment.

Ends up, he wanted me to go to.

But why? I asked. Other than the drive down & back, and maybe meeting for dinner at night, we'd only see each other to sleep.

Ends up... he needs me.

This is a new venture for him, he knows no one, and he was feeling nervous.

And I am his security blanket. Just knowing I am there makes him feel better.

And since I had enough vacation time left at work, I agreed to come. My plan is to spend some time working on my blog, and maybe do a little shopping. I'm sure I'll manage to keep busy.

And so I am typing this from our hotel room, while he is downstairs attending a session. We drove down yesterday. Went to the hotel bar last night in an attempt for him to network. Once I saw that he was comfortably chatting with a group of guys, I excused myself.

He's good now.

And he told me today that he's glad I came.

And it just reminds me, that sometimes the best way we can support our spouse, strengthen our marriage, is simply to be there.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

This needs to be shared

I've tried three times to think of how to introduce this story, but my words seem so inadequate. This is a marriage story, that although unfinished, needs to be shared. Enjoy.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

And He Talks

Really talks.

Like maybe he's never done before.

At least not with me.

This past weekend, the hubs and I talked. For hours.

About real stuff. Not piddly little day-to-day items. Not rambling about family or friends or what not. We talked about us. About our relationship, our marriage, our thoughts, our feelings.

We talked.

Without yelling. Without getting angry. Even when we were discussing what upset us. We just talked.

Hashed it out.

And it was awesome.

We both got our feelings hurt. We both got confused. But more importantly, we both got heard.

Pure awesomeness I tell you.

The truth is that love is an action, a series of actions. I am able to love my husband better when he tells me what he wants & needs from me, from life. And vice versa.

There's a lot of talk about the importance of real communication in relationships, and I think maybe for the first time I really get it. When we don't communicate with our spouse, we hinder their ability to love us, and for us to love them. We make it harder for them to love us. Not in feelings, but in actions. How can they know how to best love us, if we don't let them in to the deepest parts of ourselves? The truth is, they can't.

Communication is key. I'm convinced.

I'm also in love.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Love like Christ

Lately I've heard / seen several marital issues that have had me deep in thought.

That's right folks, today we're not talking bout my marriage. We're gonna talk about other people's.

First, on an episode of Hoarders,  the husband walks out on his wife mid-show as she discusses her hoarding problem. Says he's divorcing her, something he's threatened before.

I understand both sides of their argument. They've only been married a few years, and she says (and he admits) that her house looked like this before they married, the entire time they dated. If it were that big of an issue, he should never have proposed. He says she refuses to move, and refuses to create any room for him in her life, literally. That if she weren't willing to make room for him, she should never have said 'yes'.

They both have very valid points.

One of my friends is going thru a situation with her husband where he cheated on her. She threatened to leave unless he cut off the affair & agreed to counselling. He agreed. They are both getting counselling (individually & together), and he has been trying to make it up to her ever since. Romancing her like never before.

Another friend, caught her husband cheating. Again. She never left him the first time, choosing instead to forgive the offense. Now she's not sure what to do. He has (in a roundabout way) that he would rather leave her & their children than to seek counselling for their problems. It remains to be seen if either of them will leave.

All of this talk of leaving. Actually leaving, threatening to leave, giving ultimatums or "I'm out" has me doing a lot of thinking.

Don't get me wrong, I understand the desire to leave. Trust me. I get it. The truth is I've been very close in the past myself. I get it.

An in a situation of cheating or beating*, you even have a biblically justified reason for divorce.

But... and bear with me here... don't we all sin against our spouses in some way? Offend them? Hurt them? Don't we all have our issues & baggage we bring to the table? Don't we all make mistakes? Sometimes repeatedly?

What makes it enough? What offense is enough to end your marriage? To break your covenant?

Beyond marriage, don't we all hurt the ones we love?

Taking it even further, what about Christ? How many times have we offended Him? Sinned against God? Aren't we all sinners, undeserving of the Lord's forgiveness?

What if God chose to leave?
What if He reached a point where he said "enough is enough, you have hurt me too many times, I'm leaving you." ??

And as these thoughts whirled around in my head, I thought "what if marriage, the bigger-picture view of marriage, is that it isn't about being with whom you love, it's about learning how to love the unlovable?"

* this post is not talking about victims of domestic violence. If you or your children are being harmed, please get out now.  You can Google domestic violenced help in your area, or if the situation is truly urgent, call 9-1-1 for immediate assistance.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


The past few weeks have been good. Really good.

I don't know what made the difference. It's almost as if a switch has been flipped. A good switch.

In many ways, it reminds me of our dating days.

I can't tell you how many times over the past few weeks I've had the thought "it feels like when we were dating".

I'm amazed.

I don't know what to make of it.

Part of me is scared. But most of me is happy.

Very happy.

Oh, we still have our issues, our problems, our struggles.

But... to feel like when you were dating again... it's something I never thought would happen.

And it's glorious.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Why does forgiveness have to be so hard?

Sometimes it just doesn't seem fair.

I know I'm not perfect. I know I have my faults. I know there are areas in which I have messed up in our marriage.

But I'm not the one who created a foundation of mistrust in our marriage. I'm not the one who lied, and lied, and lied again. Who kept secrets. Big ones. I'm not the one who crossed the line.

So why do I keep having to pay for it?

I found something yesterday morning. Totally by accident. Stumbled upon it while unpacking a box from our old house (no we haven't unpacked them all yet, don't judge).

And that something tore open wounds of the past. My hearts sank into the pit of my stomach. The lies of the past.

It raised questions I've already asked, but which answers I've always questioned. Reminded me that the truth of what I found myself didn't always match what little confession I did get from him.

Reminded me of the lies. Of the deceit. Of the trust crumbled and smashed. Dashed to pieces.

And I really wanted to take this thing and hold onto it until FireMan came home from shift, and ask him about it. Dig a little deeper. Maybe get a little more truth about what really happened two years ago.

Or maybe I'd just get more lies.

I'm not angry anymore. Not at all. Honestly. Truly. No anger.

But I still feel like there are lies I haven't uncovered. There are still pieces missing from the puzzle.

And I think deep down I'm afraid if I don't figure out every last piece, then they can stay out there somewhere, waiting to hurt me in the future.

I think deep down my desire to find out every detail of every lie, of every secret, is my attempt to protect myself from future hurt.

But as I sat there staring at this thing, I realized something.

It's in the past.

I know it is. I found it in a box from a house we haven't lived in for the past 18 months. It is not evidence of any new offense, just additional evidence of a past offense. One I already knew about.

One I've already forgiven him for.

So now, I have to decide if I really forgave him.

Even if there are more lies I don't know about yet. Even if there is more deceit, dishonesty, intentional misleading that I never know about.

It's all in the past.

So did I forgive him, or not? Really forgive him?

And so... I threw it away.

I never said a word to FireMan.

I am choosing to live in the present.

We can't go back in time. I'm not going to pretend like things will ever be exactly they way they were before. They won't.

But I can work to move forward. I can work on myself. And my ability to forgive.

And I can realize what it really means to truly forgive someone.

I can choose to forgive him for anything and everything he has done to hurt me in the past, or I can hold it against him and destroy our marriage in the process.

Forgiving isn't a one time deal.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012



Ends up my hubs has been ticked off at me for a week. I had no idea.

In the week since our anniversary spat, he's acted like everything was fine... until bedtime. Then he ignored me. And I don't just mean sexually.

Would interrupt me talking and talk right over me as if I weren't even there.

Would check messages on his phone as we're starting to cuddle up in bed.

Would generally just see right thru me.

We haven't had sex in almost a week. Which for us is a long time. And for him is unheard of. But he didn't seem interested at all.

I was hurt. Confused. What was going on? Why did he act fine all day, then reject me at night?

Ends up, he was angry with me.

I had no idea.

Seriously. None. He never said a word about being angry. He never told me he was upset with me. And other than ignoring me (but only at nighttime) he was actually treating me really well.

And the whole time he was fostering this resentment against me because I wasn't making the offense right.

Maybe if he had said something when it happened, I could have apologized and attempted to make things right, saving us both a lot of upsettedness (it's totally a word - see - I just typed it).

In the meantime, I was hurt.

Yes, by what he said about our anniversary. But then every night when he would ignore me, I would hurt again.

And then he talked about an upcoming trip he needs to go on (work, not fun). And I said repeatedly that I'd like to go with him, just to be with him. And each time I brought it up, he'd come up with a list of scenarios that involved him going alone. It seemed that he'd rather drive 10 hours alone, than with me. I was hurt. And confused.

And I never said anything. For a week.

And so my hurt & confusion grew.

Maybe if I had said something sooner we could have cleared the air much sooner.

Instead it festered in both of our hearts - anger and hurt - for a week. And then it came out in an explosion. There was a lot of talking. Some yelling. Accusations back & forth. Lots of fun.

The end result? He declared that he was going to sleep. I still wanted to hash it out until we resolved the issue. But you can't discuss things with someone snoring.

Well, I do. But it doesn't actually end up resolving anything.

And so, here we are. The next day.

I have no idea how he feels about it. He's acting like everything is normal. Then again, he was acting like everything was fine for the past week while he harbored this resentment towards me.

So does he feel better since everything is out in the air? Is he still angry?

I have no idea.

I'm still hurt. He reiterated during our... talk... that he doesn't think our anniversary is important. Ouch. I'm hurt that he once again takes no responsibility for what happened. None.

It's not his fault for holding his feelings in - it's my fault for doing it in the first place
It's not his fault for letting this anger & resentment build up - it's my fault for not taking actions to right a wrong I didn't know I'd done
It's not his fault I got hurt - it's my fault because I'm too sensitive
It's not his fault I got hurt - it's my fault for even thinking a silly anniversary would be special
It's not his fault we didn't communicate - it's my fault for not anticipating what he needed me to do/say
It's not his fault I don't feel connected to him - it's my fault because I need conversation to feel connected, and that's silly

I am fully willing to take responsibility for my part in what happened. I have. A said so last night, and I apologized.

I did mess up with the original offense. Although it's also one of those situations where you both believe you're right, so you just have to agree to disagree, the fact is I didn't put his feelings before my own, and in that way, I messed up.
I messed up by not expressing to him how he was repeatedly hurting my feelings, or by telling him I felt rejected.

I've already owned up to those, and apologized.

But him?

You'd think it'd be awesome to be married to a perfect, faultless, blameless individual. But it's not. It rather sucks. Royally.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Anniversary Spat - part 4

This is getting long, isn't it? LOL


So today he leaves the house like nothing is wrong. Like nothing happened.

I called him at lunch. He acted like nothing happened. But of course he had to cut our conversation short because he was at Lowe's and the guys needed him.

And of course he gets off shift tomorrow and drives an hour straight (without coming home) to go to training. He might get out in time to join us for a friend's birthday party. Has training again the next day, for 8 hours. Then he's on shift again.

Basically, I anticipate not seeing my husband for at least four days.

And he's made it clear in the past that he hates talking on the phone.

After all, the guys might need him. You know, as if I don't.

I've decided I'm not bringing up our anniversary again. What's the point? He's decided he doesn't want to go, and doesn't care how much it means to me.

Besides, even if he agrees to it at this point, it's not because he wants to celebrate our first marriage milestone, or even because he wants to make me happy... at this point it would be just to shut me up. In other words, the only way he's agreeing to it now is to make his life easier, not for us, or for me.

So what's the point? I don't even want to go on an anniversary trip with someone who doesn't want to be there. That just makes everyone miserable.

So today I sent in the request to cancel my vacation days for October. You know, for our big trip. The days he called me to schedule at the beginning of the year when his department was doing their vacation scheduling (yes, they're expected to schedule the bulk of it in January each year). So he called me (ie. initiated it), we agreed on what week we would travel, we both requested, and were granted, the necessary days off work.

Something he used to be at least minimally excited about - at least enough to schedule for it 10 months in advance - he now doesn't even want to do.

And he won't tell me why.

I'm not gonna lie. I am so disappointed. I cried as I filled out the request to cancel those days. I'm on the verge of tears as I type this.

You know, I just can't help but think that even if he didn't really want to go (although I think at some point he did - or at least acted like it), that because it obviously means so much to me, he might be willing. You know, to do it for me.

And it's not like I'm trying to get him to put on a suit & go to a fancy schmancy restaurant, then take me to the ballet or anything.

I want to travel. A trip. Something he loves as well. When I was (past tense) looking up destinations, I was careful to makes sure any place I was looking at had activities he liked.

I just really don't understand what happened.

And I'm really, really hurt. Probably more than he realizes.

Of course, if he doesn't realize it, it's just because once again he's not paying attention.

{{ sigh }}

Friday, May 25, 2012

Anniversary Spat - part 3

During our conversation, he decided he needed sleep more than he needed to talk.

Of course, now my emotions are "on", so even though I am exhausted, my mind is awake.

I lie in bed next to him and talk for who-knows-how-long. I remind him of everything we've come thru, how far we've come, how bad it was. I remind him how close we came to not making it to five years.

I really think he was awake. At least during part of it. I mean, how many people scratch their heads in their sleep?

But he had no reaction to me at all. None. Once again, here I am, pouring my heart out and I get absolutely nothing in return. No reaction at all. None.

I have no idea if he were angry with me, if anything I said upset him in any way, or if, as it seems, he just doesn't care.

I am so tired of expressing - in so many ways - how much I love him & care for him and care about our marriage & family, and getting no such expression in return.

It's like he shuts me out.

I am so desperate to reconnect with my husband. To connect with him. To re-connect.

And he seems desperate to do anything but.

I am hurt. Again. Still. Today. More than 12 hours later. Hurt.

It's funny how the people you love the most, have the greatest ability to hurt you.

In fact, they don't even have to do anything. They just have to do nothing.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Anniversary Spat - part 2

After I got passed the disappointment that we couldn't take our big trip, I realized we could still work in a weekend trip. Maybe five days, tops. Two weekend days, and no more than three work days. And I could schedule it so he would only miss one shift day.

This could work. He agreed.

I started researching different locations that were within a nine hour drive of our house. If we're only going to be gone for five days (max), I don't want to spend more than a day driving, each way.

This could still be a good trip, right?

Then, last night. I asked him again where he wants to go. Lately I've been less than thrilled with his lack of enthusiasm.

He said he doesn't know. He doesn't really want to drive anywhere.

I remind him we can't afford to fly (anymore).

He says "why do we have to do a trip anyway?".

Insert shock face. Hurt, confused shock face.

My husband loves to travel. For no reason at all. For any reason at all. Why in the world doesn't he want to take a trip for our annivesary? For our fifth anniversary? We've already figured out we can still afford it, if it's smaller. I've worked out the schedule. Basically I'm doing all the work, I just want his input.

And his input is that he doesn't want to do a trip?!? I don't understand. So I ask him.

He doesn't think our anniversary is a big deal.

You thought I had a hurt, confused, shock face before...

He said maybe our 10th would be a big deal, but not our 5th. This is nothing.

I remind him that he didn't make it to 5 years in his first marriage. That he's never had a relationship last for 5 years, let alone a marriage. That I've never had a relationship make it to 5 years, let alone a marriage.

He says he knows, but doesn't see the big deal.

I concede... sort of.

I tell him maybe if we were just another couple, that had an extended honeymoon phase, or even a "normal" first few years of marriage, maybe this wouldn't be so big... but we didn't.

We had a very rough few years in there, many times when I didn't know if we'd made it, but we did! We made it! Isn't that worth celebrating?!?

Apparently not.

He really, truly, honestly doesn't seem to see the big deal. He's thinking maybe we could go out to dinner or something. You know, like we do all the time. Probably to the same place.

Real special, hubs.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Anniversary Spat - part 1

So, last night we had our first spat in over a month. Maybe longer.

And it was over our anniversary. Five months away.

See, this year is the big 5. Our fifth anniversary.

We had planned on doing a long trip (7-10 days), we always planned on doing something big for this one. On our honeymoon we talked about maybe doing similar-type trips every 5 years.

We had started looking at all-inclusive resorts in the States as well as the Caribbean. And cruises. And some other locations as well.

We're talking a big trip.

I had already decided on what I wanted to get him for his anniversary present. I had started dreaming of doing  a vow renewal (also not a new idea - something we had talked about before).

And then... some other family plans interfered. As in plans that require a nine-day-trip the same month as our anniversary.

A trip he will definitely go on, and I might attend (it's his family). I'll go if we can afford it, since you have to pay your own way.

As in, there goes our anniversary trip budget.
And time. Neither one of us can afford to be gone from our jobs for nine days, be back for four, then leave again for 7-10 days. Even if we spread it out more, neither one of us can afford to be gone for over half the month.

And the family plans involve a large group of people, and so cannot be rescheduled.

So no big trip for us.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Quick Update

Sorry I've been MIA for a while. If you read my other blog, you already know why.


We never made it to counseling. Our appointment was the same day as my father-in-law's funeral. So... obviously that didn't happen.

Two weeks after my FIL passed away, my nephew overdosed. He's been in the ICU ever since, but should be discharged to a neurology rehabilitation center today.

Needless to say, things have been a little... emotionally unstable.... for the past month.

Thru it all, we've been doing really well though. Not perfect (is anyone ever?) but we're doing well.

As always, thanks for checking in!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

And... he compromises

FireMan has said that he will attend one counseling session.

Just one. He will go with an open mind, and see if he wants to continue. And I have to schedule around all of his activities.

But... he will go.


Monday, April 16, 2012

I will love him

I never really figured out if it's a forgiveness issue or not.

What I did realize, is that for our marriage to heal, for me to heal, I need to at least try to change my thinking.

And so last night, I committed to FireMan that I will love him.
I will try to view THE LIE as a mistake - a big one, for sure, but a mistake none the less.
I will try to see him how I used to see him, and this as just a mistake that he made, not as something that changed who he was.

I'm not sure how to accomplish that, but I will try.

After all, we all make mistakes. Some bigger than others. And so don't we owe each other a little forgiveness, grace, and mercy?

I will love him.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Is it a Forgiveness Issue?

I struggle with what my issue is, exactly.

On one hand, I don't think it's a forgiveness issue. When I think about what FireMan did, there is no emotion surrounding the event, the lie - it's just something that happened, just a part of our history.

But at the same time, that single event changed how I view him as a person.

So, since I still do not see him the same way I used to, does this mean I haven't forgiven him completely? or is that just a result of his actions that we both have to come to terms with?

I don't know.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

I Wanna Make It Go Back

FireMan & I talked yesterday, a lot.

Mostly about our marriage, about our relationship.

One thing I've never understood is when FireMan would say our marriage was fine, he was happy, and that he didn't understand why I wasn't happy.

We talked about this a lot.

He didn't understand why I'm always surprised when he says he's happy with us.

I told him it's because his behavior, to me, is not that of a happily married man.

After a bit of discussion, he seemed to understand how his actions don't give that appearance.

He also says he thinks our marriage is fine because we don't actually have arguments that often. Only once or twice a month. Which he feels is normal, or even better-than-normal.

And he asked me why I wasn't happy. He persisted with this question.

And while the answer didn't take me long to find - I don't trust him, and I don't feel secure in our relationship - it did take a little bit of time, of quiet time, for a little more information to reveal itself to me. And then I shared with him.

The fact is, I haven't been truly happy in our marriage since that fateful day just over two years ago, when I discovered THE LIE. The first big lie that I uncovered. And it was a doozy.

And it hurt me. To the core.

And in my eyes, it changed who he was.

I probably have not stopped wondering & worrying, not really, since that moment. Since the moment my stomach sank and my heart broke.

I no longer see him the same way. When I look at him, I do not see the same man that I married.

Have you ever experienced that? Someone did something that actually changed who they were to you? I'm not sure that I have.

People have done things, sure. Disappointed me, surprised me, of course.

But done something that was so out-of-line with how I saw them, that it actually changed my view of them as a person? I think this is the first time.

And for the past two years I have been trying my darnedest to make it go back like it was before that moment.

Can it ever?

Will I ever trust him the way I trusted him before? Will I ever feel the type of security that I felt before that instance?

I don't know the answer.

I desperately want to. I want to make it go back to how it was.

When I was married to this devoted, hard-working husband & father. When I was so proud of him, ALL of him. When I would brag on him to other people. When I never thought he'd hurt me in this manner. When I thought I could trust him with anything. When I thought that even if we had rough spots, he would never truly break my heart.

I want it to go back.

And I wonder if that's why I've been spinning my wheels so much. Why all my efforts have been fruitless. Why, even with the improvements both of us have made, I'm still not happy.

Because "happy" to me, is how it was before.

So what if it can never be like it was before? How do I redefine "happy"?

Oh, don't misunderstand me... FireMan still has a lot to do. We talked about that too. How his continued lying to me doesn't help me to feel more secure, that each time he breaks my trust, it puts me right back where I was the first time, how if we want it to get better at all, he has to stop lying.

He seemed to understand. He promised to stop.

Sadly, as much as I'd like to believe him, there's a part of me that is just waiting for my heart to be broken again.

It seems that we both have a lot to work on.

I'm just not sure what I need to do.

Friday, April 6, 2012


I had a revelation of sorts this morning.

Not a huge, in-your-face, sudden, startling sort of revelation.

More of a God-has-been-working-on-this-for-a-while, He's-been-preparing-your-heart-for-this, and now it's time to reveal the message sort of revelation.

So... are you ready for it? Waiting on baited breath?

If I have the expectation that FireMan should improve as my husband, then I have a responsibility to continue to strive to be a better wife for him.

That's big, isn't it?

The truth is that I always have the responsibility to continue in my efforts to improve as a wife, whether or not I have any expectations of him.

And I have been lax in this area.

I did try, was trying, for more than a year. Busted my butt working on my wifely-ness.

Then I got hurt & resentful that I wasn't getting the same effort from him. Indeed sometimes it seemed like I wasn't getting any effort from him. And I stopped trying to improve as a wife.

And that's not right, or good.

There is always room for improvement, room for growth. There is no such thing as perfection in our human selves.

And so this will become my focus. Again.

Perhaps not with the same fervor as before, but still. There is plenty of room for me to be a better wife.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

I scheduled us for marriage counseling

A couple days after my email.

I tried to call the next day, but they didn't answer.

It's something I've requested of FireMan before. He's always refused.

Something about the bad experience he had when he went to counseling with his ex wife, and how he doesn't think counseling works because everyone who goes gets divorced anyway.

Personally, I think this is because most couples wait until it's too late to ask for help. But that's just me.

A few months ago, I suggested it to him again. Told him that we needed something to help us, because we'd been struggling for too long in our relationship. And I was out of ideas. I've done everything I can think of, everything I've read about, every good piece of advice I've gotten. The only idea I have left is to go to counseling. I asked him to please think about it, and put the ball in his court.

Told him if he had another idea, that would be great too, it's just that counseling was all I had left.

Clearly, he still didn't want to go.

After this latest revelation, I just scheduled it.

He really doesn't want to go.

I told him I couldn't make him go, but I think it will help improve our marriage.

Then (for some reason) I asked him what he thought when I initially told him I'd made the appointment.

He said he thought I'd "gone crazy". Had a bad day or FireGirl did something or something happened at work and I "went crazy" on him. Something to that effect.

Basically, I scheduled it because I was "crazy". Because I was having a rough time. Because someone else did something to drive me over the edge.

Nowhere in his train of thought did it occur to him that I was doing this (as I've suggested at least a dozen times over the years) to help us improve our marriage. It never occurred to him that he might be what drove me "over the edge", made me "crazy".

I know he didn't intend it this way, but that comment was probably the most hurtful thing he's said to me in a while.

Because not only has he not come up with any other ideas, he's not even willing to try my last remaining idea to improve things.

Because he called me "crazy"... and meant it.

Because he still refuses to take any responsibility for the state our marriage is in, instead blaming my unhappiness on our daughter, or my work, or me alone.

Because if he really thought that was why I scheduled the appointment, then he has not really listened to me at all, during the at-least-a-dozen times over the past few years that I have suggested counseling, carefully laid out why I think it will help us, and why I'm willing to give it a shot even though he had a bad experience eight years ago.

He hasn't heard me at all.

With his work schedule, plus the busyness in our lives lately, our appointment isn't for a couple of weeks. I guess only time will tell if he goes or not.

As for me? Well, I've already got my half of the paperwork filled out.

Monday, April 2, 2012

I emailed my husband. Is that weird?

I knew I wanted needed to confront FireMan about the lies I'd uncovered, but I didn't know what to say or how to say it. I was afraid if I said anything, it would lead into a huge argument.

I didn't know what to do.

So I wrote an email. I revised it. I waited a day. I revised it again. Then I sent it.

I told him I was sad. I told him what I had discovered, that I knew he had been lying to me. I told him about a few other things that he has done that have hurt me and that I don't understand for and he won't explain to me. And I ended by explaining how I want so desperately to trust him, that I used to trust him, but that he has shattered that trust so many times I can't anymore.

And I told him I don't know how to live with someone I don't trust.

I'm pretty sure he read it. But he hasn't said one word about it. Not even to tell me he got it.

Five days later.

I don't know what to think about that.

Seems like I say that a lot, doesn't it?

Saturday, March 31, 2012

"Listening is the oldest and perhaps the most powerful tool of healing. It is often through the quality of our listening and not the wisdom of our words that we are able to affect the most profound changes in the people around us. When we listen, we offer with our attention an opportunity for wholeness. Our listening creates sanctuary for the homeless parts within the other person. That which has been denied, unloved, devalued by themselves and others. That which is hidden. In this culture the soul and the heart too often go homeless. Listening creates a holy silence. When you listen generously to people, they can hear the truth in themselves, often for the first time. And in the silence of listening, you can know yourself in everyone. Eventually you may be able to hear, in everyone and beyond everyone, the unseen singing softly to itself and to you."

-- Rachel Naomi Remen

Lord, help me to be a better listener to those around me. And send me someone to listen to the denied, unloved, and devalued parts of myself. Thank you. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

If the Truth Hurts, then Lies Kill

Last night I uncovered multiple lies that FireMan has been telling me. Either directly to my face, dodging around fully truthful statements, or thru intentional omission of facts.

Yes, I found out via snooping.

I've had the feeling for a while that he was holding something back.

Recent developments only increased that feeling.

I swear sometimes it's like I just know. Women's intuition perhaps?

Oh, the lies.

Had lied to my face about something just a couple of hours earlier. And the thing is... if he had been honest, it wouldn't have been a big deal. That's what I don't get about some of these. I don't see the reason for the lie.

Others are obvious. Things that he knows I do consider a big deal. Lies he's repeating from the past.

Lies, lies, lies.

This time, I don't feel stupid though.

Things have been going fairly well. In many ways we both have made great strides to becoming better partners for one another.

But... the lies, the deceit, the intentional misleading... I don't know how to be in a relationship with someone who lies to me on a regular basis, someone who shows no remorse, someone who has no emotion when faced with their lies.

I don't even know how to live with that person.

It reminds me of college. For several years I shared a house with 5 girls. At one point we had an issue with one of the girls being a compulsive liar.

Know what the rest of us did? Confronted her, and when she didn't stop, kicked her out. Had her lease terminated. Seriously.

Because how could you share living space with someone you don't trust? It makes everyone else uncomfortable, always worrying, wondering if what the person is saying is truthful, be it big or small.

And now here I am, many moons later, living with and married to someone who lies to me on what is apparently a fairly regular basis.

I say apparently because I don't actually check up on him often. Rarely even (anymore). So how long as this been going on? At least a few weeks. Looks like months actually. Or maybe it just never, ever stopped.

Sometimes I wonder who this man is that I married.

Since becoming married, I have found out (usually thru his slip up) that things he told me when we were dating were not true. Things that would probably have ended the relationship had I known at the time.

Sometimes I wonder if anything in our relationship is real at all. Or is our entire life together just  a sham?

I don't even know what to feel right now.

I'm not angry. I'm don't even feel hurt.

But I am really, really sad. I feel like I could burst into tears at any moment.

I haven't talked to him since he left this morning. I don't know if I'll talk to him when he calls. Not because I'm angry. Not because I'm intentionally giving him the silent treatment, but simply because I have no words for him at this point.

No words.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

My Fantasies

Yes, I have them.

They rarely involve my husband (anymore).

They used to. But then I was always disappointed. So now they're always framed in this "secret admirer" type of situation.

So hopefully you understand that I'm not talking about sex.

I had a birthday a while back. And it was a milestone for me. And I felt old. And yes, I had mentioned to my hubby that I didn't want anything big, like a party or anything.

Not that I really had to worry about that. I mean, my husband hasn't even gotten me a birthday present in 5 years.

2007. My first birthday with him. He got me a birthstone necklace. It was beautiful. I actually wore it at our wedding.

2008. My birthday came & went with nothing but dinner. We had recently found out I was pregnant and two weeks after my birthday we traded in the pickup truck for the SUV we have now. About a month later, when I tease him about not getting me anything, he tries to say that I got a car for my birthday, and how many wives can say that? and how can I not be grateful for such a big present? You know, the SUV we got two weeks after my birthday, that we would have gotten anyway because we were having a kid. He still claims that was my present.

2009. My cell phone had been acting up for months. I got a new phone a week or so before my birthday. But so did FireMan. He tried to say it was my birthday present, but I contested that it can't be my present if he's getting one too. Why is he getting a new phone "just because", but I have to use my birthday present for mine? That's not fair, so it doesn't count. He insists that's my present, and I'm not getting anything else. And he lives up to that.

2010. I think we just went to dinner. Maybe a movie. No actual present. Not sure I even got a card.

2011. I'm 99% sure we just went to dinner. Definitely no present. And I'm fairly certain I did not get a card.

So needless to say, this year I wasn't expecting anything. Even if it is a milestone birthday. Even if our relationship is better. Even if I do have a history of getting him kick-ass presents (except for this year, because why bother? but that's a whole 'nother blog post, you know?).

The day before my birthday FireMan is on shift and I ask if he got my present yet. Nope. I suggest he ask the guys if they can do a WalMart run. He laughs.

I wake up the morning of my birthday. He was on shift the night before. The house is quiet. There is nothing to mark the day. My mind starts to wander.

Maybe I'll get to work and there will be balloons... no, flowers on my desk.

And then I realize that FireMan would never do that. Like, ever.

So that tiny little thought turns into this fantasy. That I come into work and there's this lovely bouquet of flowers on my desk, and no note, or maybe just a note that says "Happy Birthday", but it's not signed.

And what if they're actually my favorite flower? What if someone actually knows me well enough to know what my favorite flower is, and has them sent to my office for my birthday?

And I got all tingly & giddy just thinking about it.

And I got to my office and there was nothing there.

But that didn't keep me from thinking that maybe the front desk would call me with a delivery.

Didn't keep my mind wandering off, fantasizing about this made up secret admirer for hours, creating all kinds of scenarios where this secret admirer gets me just the perfect gift and somehow gets it to me without me noticing him.

But by the end of the day, my fantasies had waned into nothing.

But that's okay. I wouldn't know what to do with a secret admirer anyway.

And when I got home? FireMan had gotten me a dozen roses, and a very sweet card.

I'm not sure how he knew I had flowers on the brain, or maybe it was just a lucky coincidence, but... yay.

Anyway, the point is that I fantasize on occasion. Not about sex, but about romance. About being swept away with the kind attentions of a man. An unknown, faceless, man.

I guess everybody needs fantasies in some way, huh?

Friday, March 23, 2012

I want you to want me

A 2007 study found that 40% of women who cheat on their spouses do so for more emotional attention, and another 33% do so to be reassured of their desirability.

While I have no intention of cheating, I believe the study is accurate. I can see where the desire for attention is there, and when combined with opportunity, it could develop further.

I cannot tell you how many times I have begged FireMan to pay more attention with me, spend more time with me & FireGirl (he has improved in this area), or in despair said "You never listen to me!"

To quote Pete from the movie Knocked Up: "The biggest problem in our marriage is that she wants me around."

And, just to refresh your memory, I work with almost entirely men.

And you remember this incident, right?

No, it hasn't happened again.

But the other day one of my best friend-coworkers (yes, a guy) and I got to talking. For an hour and 45 minutes. I didn't think anything of it at the time. There were only three of us even in the office, and he's been going thru some stuff, and he is one of my few actual friends at work, and we tell each other stuff, so... we started talking.

And before I knew it, it had been nearly two hours, and I needed to leave to pick up FireGirl from preschool.

We talked about everything. Work, home, family, kids, parents, grandparents, health, mental health, relationships, marriage, pets, college, past jobs, old girlfriends / boyfriends... one thing just kept leading to another and the conversation was easy.

To be clear, I have absolutely no interest in this person. Never did, not even when I was single. Besides, one of the things I happen to know about him is how he cheated on his wife repeatedly throughout their marriage before they finally got divorced. Good friend, yes. Recommend him to a girlfriend to date, not a chance.

Anywho... later that night FireMan had one of our infamous I-wanna-talk-and-he-couldn't-care-less moments.

And I couldn't help but let my mind drift back to earlier in the day, when I had an easy, two hour conversation with someone who wanted to talk to me. Someone who seeks me out to tell me new developments in their life. Someone who trusts me with secrets, and who I trust with mine.

And I couldn't help but wonder if I perhaps know more about this fellow than I do about my own husband. Does he know more about me than my own husband does? He might. It's possible. Certainly not for lack of effort on my part though.

And I couldn't help but wish that my husband showed me the same attention, wanted to spend that much time just communicating with me, wanted to tell me what was going on in his life, wanted to ask what was going on in mine.

Yes, hubby, I want you to want me. I really, really do.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Those Stupid Little Things... Well, They're Actually Really Big

FireMan & I got into a fight the other night.

Started off innocently enough. I asked him if he knew what my favorite movie was. I was kinda teasing him, because I thought surely he knew the answer.

He stumbled around and listed two are three movies, and ended with "I don't know"

Now, to be fair, my favorite movie was one of the ones he listed, but... how did he not know this?

Yeah, I should preface this by saying that my teasing him... well, it was in the context of the fact that he still knows not only his ex-wife's favorite movie, but her favorite line from that movie. And I was teasing him about it. How we got into that conversation is not important to this post.

What is important is that he knows his ex-wife's favorite line from her favorite movie... and can't even name (with assurance) what my favorite movie is.

I'm not sure how the rest of the ladies out there would feel about that, but it did not sit well with me.

So this began a conversation. As upset as I was, at this point it was more of a kinda of sad than anything. I mean, how does my hubby not know this?!?

We've been married 4 years, together 6.

His ex-wife? Well, they've been divorced 6 years, separated 7, and were barely even together 4 years total.

Yet he knows this about her, and not me.

I asked him if he knew my favorite color (again, at this point I'm calm, I'm kinda teasing, because I still think surely he will know my favorite color, I mean my 3 yr old knows my favorite color, so surely my hubby will, right?)

He answers with assurance.

Not only the wrong color... he names his ex-wife's favorite color.

Which just so happens to be probably my least favorite color, and isn't even in the same color family as mine.

Now... not happy.

Kinda want to hit him.

So, he knows his ex-wife's favorite line from her favorite movie, remembers her favorite color 7 years later... and doesn't know any of that stuff about me?!?

This is not good.

I remain calm. More than being upset with him, I see this as a problem that we need to correct.

The truth is that we moved rather quickly thru our dating relationship - meeting, dating, becoming serious, moving in together, getting engaged, and finally getting married just 18 months after we met. And pregnant two months after our honeymoon.

I'm thinking ( and say to him ): "We moved really quickly thru our dating relationship, we didn't take time to get to know these little things about each other. We should date each other! Really date!"

As I'm saying it I go from being a little irritated to thinking this could be fun. Things have been going pretty well lately, I'd like to date the love of my life, right?

He responds by reminding me that we just had a date night, and then asking me where I want to go next.

So I explain that I don't just mean going out to eat once in a while, but really dating, being absorbed in each other, talking to each other like we can't get enough, asking questions like we don't know each other (because obviously we don't, right?), spending time together because we can't think of a better place to be than with each other.

His reaction?

"I'm tired" and he rolls over.

Oh yeah, this conversation took place in bed. Most of our good ones do. When else do we see each other without a preschooler around, right?

But now I'm excited about my idea. I playfully poke his side, lay on his chest staring into his closed eyes and announce that I'll go first.

I tell him my favorite movie, and my favorite line from that movie. My 2nd favorite movie, and my top 2 lines from that movie. My favorite color (then & now, it changes), a few other things that I am quite certain (and he confirms) he doesn't know about me. Maybe 6 or 7 things total. Takes maybe 2 minutes.

Then I say "okay... you're turn!" - still kinda excited about this brilliant idea of mine

"I'm going to bed"

"But... c'mon! I just told you a few things about me! You're turn! Tell me something about yourself!"

"I like to go to bed early, and I'm going to sleep now"

And then he proceeds to ignore me.

This. Sets. Me. Off.

I may or may not have ripped the covers off of him, yelled at him, and then stormed out of the room slamming the door behind me.

I may or may not have just gone off on him about the deeper issue of how I'm sick & tired of putting myself out there, sharing with him, giving him more of myself, and getting nothing in return.

I may have overreacted.

Or I may have reacted just enough, when you consider all the stuff behind this behavior of his.

I wanted him to tell me one thing. One thing about himself. 10 seconds. And he wouldn't give me that.

I suggest dating - I mean, how fun is it to date the person you love, right? - and he acts like it's a prison sentence.

I'm not gonna lie - I do feel like I overreacted when I blew up at him.

But I also feel like I remained calm and positive and reasonable far longer than many would have. I was trying to turn this issue into something positive, something constructive, something we could use to build up our relationship with... and he pooped on it.

As if it's not bad enough that I know (from him mentioning thru the years) of all these other things that he did for his ex-wife that he has since flat out refused to do for me (gifts, nice dinners, romantic dates, dressing up, and the bitch even got a planned out, thoughtful, romantic proposal [unlike mine]), and now I'm faced with the reality that not only does he still know more about her, but he doesn't even care to learn about me, as excited as he was to date her, he doesn't want to date me, and it seems like the more I try to love him, the more times I get slapped in the face.

I am so tired of being rejected time and time again.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Homewrecker? Polygamist? Swinger? You Decide!

I was reviewing my stats for this blog the other day, and noticed something interesting.

I think the clear winner is whoever is searching for the phrase "i think my husband is satan". It may not be at the top of the list, but clearly... the best search option to land on my blog.

But I also find two of the others interesting:


"i feel so stupid for calling his wife"

Um... I'm not sure who you are, or even how that phrase landed on my blog, but... STOP whatever you are doing. And no, I don't mean stop calling his wife. I mean stop whatever you are doing with him. He's married! I don't care what he tells you, just stop!


And last but not least we have "shared wife"

In case you didn't figure out it, that is not what this blog is about.


And with that... I think I will make it a point to check those keywords every once in a while. Who knows how many interesting hits I've missed?

Thanks for checking in!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

I'm Selfish

So... I've come to realize lately that I've been selfish.

And (but) to be honest, I bounce back & forth between it's bad and it's normal (because that's normal, does that make it okay?) and it's reasonable (again, does that make it okay?), and it's not selfishness, it's standing up for yourself and expressing what you want / need.

I don't really have a conclusions yet. Part of the journey, I suppose. But I do think that maybe there's a really fine line between standing up for yourself & expressing what you need from your spouse, and being a selfish little brat.

I guess in reflection I can see where lately I've been more on the selfish end of things. I also see where over the past few years I've made this journey, where for a really long time I concentrated on what he needed / wanted from me and busted my butt in attempts to give him what he needed & wanted.

And felt like I wasn't getting that same selflessness in return.

FireMan has become so much a better husband than he was a couple of years ago. He does do things for me. I don't want this to sound like another my-husband's-a-jerk post.

I guess what I'm saying is that in trying to figure out where I got here, I think his selfishness spun off of into need for me to assert my needs & wants, after they had been ignored for so long.

That after so long of feeling ignored and feeling like I was giving, giving, giving and not getting back what I needed, I imagine it's a natural part of the human psyche to reach this sort of survival mode, where you stop caring about other people's needs (not that I ever stopped caring, I swear), and start asserting that your own needs be met.

Sort of a I'll-hunt-to-feed-the-pride-until-I-realize-I'm-starving-myself situation.

I'm not saying my selfishness is good, or right. I am saying that I do feel it is justified, explainable, and a natural reaction of the neglect I was receiving from my spouse.

Similar to what happened here.

Doesn't make it right. Doesn't make it okay.

Does make it my actions, and I need to own them, and take steps to change my behavior.

But I do think there's a lesson here for everyone.

And... you know what... I'm gonna expound on that a little bit.

I hope this makes sense. It makes sense in my head.

Now... what do I need to do?

I think first of all I need to try to do some quiet reflection and see where my actions really have been.

I need to put my husband's needs above my own.

I need to work to strike a balance between asserting what my needs & wants are, without neglecting his needs, or... well, acting like a selfish little brat.

"Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others."    -- Philippians 2:2-4 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Blog Love

I've found a new blog to love. I honestly don't even remember how I found this blog, but I'm glad I did.

It addresses very real marital issues in very real ways.

I'm still working my way thru their writings, but some of my favorite posts (so far):

Are you Accepting or Tolerating your Spouse?

Changing My Mind

Porn's Influence on Marriage

Three Steps to Release Yourself from Resentment

Hope ya'll find it as interesting as I do!


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I'm a Freakin' Awesome Wife

*disclaimer* This is not to say I don't have MANY areas that need work, but simply that sometimes I need to be reminded that I'm a freakin' awesome wife. I really am.

I'm the kind of wife who:

- works full time outside of the home, bringing in 40-45% of our household income, all of the health/vision/dental benefits, and the preschool subsidy so we can afford great child care

- does 85% of the housework

- does 95% of the child care

- does 65% of the pet care

- still manages to do 25% of the other family-upkeep-tasks

I'm the kind of wife who:

- plans & saves for 18 months to throw you a surprise birthday party, as well as take you diving / snorkeling on a surprise trip. Including putting in all of her own personal money (Christmas, birthdays, etc) and arranging the entire trip, including time off from your boss.

- spends months researching the best new smart phone for you for Christmas

- spends weeks researching options, and gives you a white water rafting trip for your birthday, just because you said you really liked it & hadn't gone in a while

I'm the kind of wife who:

- when you mess up, royally, while still expecting you to take responsibility for your own actions, also takes the opportunity to look at herself and see how she can better meet your needs as her husband

- then busts her butt to try to do just that

- and no matter how many people tell her or hint that she should consider divorce, only did so long enough to say "for better for worse, till death do us part"

I'm the kind of wife who:

- joins community groups because you enjoy them

- learns to scuba dive so we can have something to do together

- goes to events she doesn't really want to go to, and sits there bored & alone for five hours, simply because you told her you really wanted her there

Yep. I'm freakin' awesome. I have my faults, sure, but I totally rock this wife thing

Friday, February 24, 2012

Shared Child Care Responsibilities

You know, I've pretty much realized that FireMan is not going to take care of FireGirl on any sort of regular basis.

Oh, sure, maybe once a month he drops her off at preschool, and maybe once every couple of weeks he'll get her dressed in the morning, or the other rare gesture (all of which he apparently deserves extra recognition & gratitude for), but as for actually sharing the parental duties... nope.

I get it.

It's one of the reasons that, as much as I want another child, I question whether or not I want another child with him. I know he hates when I use this phrase, but more often than not, when it comes to parenting, I feel like a single mom.

Whatever, right? I can't change him, this is my life, I deal with it.

What I am not dealing well with right now, is his comments.

Like the other night, when FireGirl was having a hard time going to bed, and it took me an hour-and-a-half to get her down, and he says "I know, it's been really hard"

I mean, really dumbshit? Really?!? You have the nerve to say that to me? As you sit there, eating the ice cream I brought you from the kitchen, and play computer games for an hour-and-a-half while your wife repeatedly gets up & tends to your distraught child, you never once volunteered to get up, help, or so much as, oh, I don't know, God forbid tell me how good I'm doing, how great I am with her, offer any kind of encouraging word... you can't even do that teeny tiny bit to encourage me while I'm struggling with this, and you have the nerve to make comments as if it's our struggle?


And then tonight, you're at the firehouse, and I apologize to you for the multiple interruptions because FireGirl is again irritable and whiny, and I say that I'm frustrated because I can't get anything done, and you say "just part of having a kid".

Yea... for me! For you, what? Having to listen to me mention my struggle once in a while? Yeah... that must be tough, huh?

It's bad enough that I feel like I'm in this alone, but for you to make comments as if you're in it with me, when you're so clearly not?

Oh, grrrrrr!

You wanna talk like a dad, then act like one first. You wanna talk like you're co-parenting this child with me, then start parenting her first. Really doing it. Really sharing in the responsibility of raising a child, not just taking her on a fun daddy day once in a blue moon and calling it your share. No, really being there and taking on some of the regular responsibilities. Then... we'll talk.

Until then, just do what you do best: sit there surfing the net while keeping your damn mouth shut!

Friday, February 17, 2012


A few hours after my last post, I sent FireMan an email.

I just told him how much I missed him, how much I missed us, how I missed how we used to be, how I didn't know how we got to where we were now, but I so desperately wanted to get back to where we were.

I told him how even with everything that has gone on, I still choose him over everyone else, it's him I want to be with, talk to, share my life with.

Late that night, he called to tell me he got it. All he said was "I love you too", just like we always say it.

I know he's just not a very expressive person, and many men aren't, but... well, sometimes I don't know what he's thinking. Okay, most of the time.

I'm glad I wrote it. I'm glad I told him how I felt about him, about us.

But I'm not gonna lie, sometimes it's hard to put yourself out there time after time, pour your heart out over and over again, and get very little, if anything, in return.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


Last night we went at it again.


Blah, blah, blah. He said the "wrong" thing, I responded the "wrong" way, he responded to me the "wrong"way, I countered the "wrong" way, rinse, repeat.

I put "wrong" in quotes because, well, at this point I can't even tell which one of us is actually wrong anymore or if we both are or if neither of us is.

I don't even know.

It's so ironic, in a horribly sad way.

I feel like I can't do anything right. I try to be a good wife, I really do. I try to do good things, to serve him well, to be kind to him, to do nice things for him, big & little - and it seems like they are either never enough, or they are just flat out wrong and instead of being something good it somehow ends up being bad. I don't even know how.

The irony of it? Sometimes I think he feels the same way. Like he tries, but I'm not happy either.

It's like we both just suck at this married thing.

I don't know. I just don't know what to do anymore. Everything just seems WRONG.

As a result... I spent a good chunk of this morning crying out to God, okay, yelling at God, asking Him why He won't save our marriage, why He won't show us what to do, force us to do it, whatever. He's God. We've both come to Him, He can do it, why won't He fix it? Why?

I don't know.

I'm sad.

Monday, February 13, 2012


Yes, this deserves all caps.


Because this has never happened.

We went out to dinner, and as we were leaving he picked up FireGirl's coat, then picked up my coat, then held it out and put it on me. You know, like a gentleman.

FireMan has been trying. And I can tell.

And it is very sweet. And it makes me smile.

His tone of voice is different toward me. Softer.

He has complimented me.

He has cleaned up dog urine (we're still housebreaking Chief), instead of just telling me where the spot is.

He told me I could buy a new outfit for our Valentine's Dance even after we found out it was semi-casual and I probably have plenty of things to wear.
I didn't find anything that spoke to me, so no new outfit, but that's not the point.

And he helped me with my coat last night.

I'm a little scared that this is all temporary and will last just long enough to get me off of the let's-go-to-counseling kick, but... I'm hopeful.

And that is a big deal.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Maybe my account is just really low. Maybe ???

When FireMan and I were dating, we attended a small group for married couples in the church we then-attended. In that small group, we were introduced to the idea of the Love Bank.

Since then, I've read & heard about the concept in several other areas.

The basic premise is that when someone does something that leaves you feeling good, they deposit in your account. When they do something that leaves you feeling bad, they withdraw from your account.
This is true in all relationships, but speaking maritally, couples that are headed for divorce usually have one or both parties with a balance near zero (or already negative).

Because I feel like that's a really bad explanation, and because I think this is a really interesting concept that I can see working in relationships around me (not just my marriage), I think it's important to understand. So I've linked to some other articles & posts about the concept below:

On the Concept of a Love Bank Account

The Love Bank - Simple Concept to Improve Relationships

Withdrawels from the Love Bank

How's Your Balance in the Love Bank?

Anyway, I've been thinking about this a lot lately, in relationship to FireMan & I.

Because the truth is, compared to the problems from our past, the latest is nothing. I mean really, really small compared to what we've already been through.

But I am just devastated. Miserable. Lost. Hopeless. Wondering if our marriage will ever make it.

And part of me feels bad, because I think FireMan is genuinely confused as to why these seemingly small offenses (in his words "I haven't done anything different") have resulted with me at the end of my rope.

And the Love Bank concept came to mind the other day, and I wondered if that were it.

Maybe, these recent issues made very small withdrawels. But my account was already at a very low balance from the very large withdrawels made over the past couple of years. Withdrawels that were never matched with equal or greater deposits.

There were deposits, sure, it's not like he didn't do anything right. But nothing that equalled, or even added up to, the amount of the withdrawels made.

So my starting balance was very low.

Subtract a few small withdrawels here recently, and... bam! In the words of an earlier post, the very words I spoke to FireMan... "I have nothing left"

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Did I Ruin It ??

I told FireMan I thought we should go to counseling. Like, together.

I was so scared to bring it up, and now that I've done it, I'm terrified. Did I ruin it? Did I seal the coffin?

See, FireMan has expressed before that he is not a fan of marriage counseling. His reason? He doesn't know anyone who has gone thru counseling and didn't still get a divorce. He said it doesn't work, and is basically the beginning of the end.

Similar to how it didn't work for his first marriage.

I believe him. Except I do know one couple who has gone thru counseling and is still married (three years later) and who reports that the counseling really helped them with their problems.

And that I think most couples who go to counseling usually wait too late, until one or both of them has already checked out of the marriage, and nothing but God's intervention will save them anyway.

But I think if you go before you get to that point, before you get to the end, that it can be a useful tool to help you work through some of your issues.

At least that's what I'm hoping.

So, if I was so scared, why did I bring it up in the first place?

Because I don't know what else to do.

I'm miserable.

I've always tried to be a good girlfriend and then wife to FireMan, I really have. I thought I was a good wife. But it was two years ago that it became known how terribly unhappy and unsatisfied he was in our marriage. And for the past two years I have busted my butt to save our marriage. I have worked to improve myself, to be a better person, but most importantly a better wife.

I have listened to what he said he needed & wanted in a spouse, and met those needs wherever I could.
If I were lacking in an area, I asked for help.

I have gone to counseling by myself. I have done self-help exercises. I have done homework. I have read numerous books. I have dove into the Scriptures. I have tried to engage him in discussions. I have booked us on vacations together. I have found babysitters so we could have date nights. More than anything else, I have prayed.

And now, two years later, nothing seems to have worked.

Are things better than they were before? Yes.

Are either of us happy (in our marriage)? No.

And I don't know why.

After our anniversary trip, things seemed so great for a little while. But I guess it was all a phase. Or a facade. Or whatever.

Because we're right back where we always were.

He just seems so terribly unhappy with me.

And the harder I try to be a good wife, the less it seems to matter.

He doesn't even seem to notice.

I have done things for him that have earned me comments of "Best Wife Ever" from the guys I work with when they found out. "Wish my wife would do something like that" My wife would never do that for me".

But my husband? Doesn't seem to notice, much less care.

Lately I feel more like a roommate than a wife. We split the bills, we attend family functions together. That's it.

Except when I had roommates we split the chores more evenly    :P    But that's a whole 'nother post, isn't it?

And now, two years later, almost to the day, I am out of ideas. I'm tapped out. I have nothing left.

The only idea I have, which we have not yet tried, is to go to counseling.

And so I asked him. A few days ago. He hasn't given me an answer yet.

I told him I am open to any other ideas he might have, but that I am out of ideas. I've done everything I know to do, this is it, this is my last idea. So it's up to him.

When I said it was up to him, he made a noise that I translated as "great, put all the pressure on me, and you're not gonna do anything"

So I told him to please, please don't take it like I'm giving up, and please don't take it like I'm expecting him to do all the work, it's just that over the past two years I've already done everything I know how, and it hasn't worked. I have nothing left. I'm not giving up, I'm not trying to put it all on him, it's just that this is the only idea I have left, and it won't work unless he goes to, so I have to ask him.

So now, as scared as I was to ask him, now I'm even more scared that he's gonna think about it and decide that me asking to go to counseling is the same as me giving up, and he's gonna just give up on me us in response.

So now I'm terrified. Scared that just by asking, I really ruined it all.

Why can't I fix this? Why am I failing as a wife? I don't understand...

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Dear Husband:

I need to know that you care as much about this marriage as I do.

I need to know that you are willing to fight as hard for this marriage as I have for the past two years.

We have our problems: yours, mine, and ours.

The blame for our situation, I am confident, does not lie with either one of us individually, but with both of us together.

And while for a brief moment I thought things were better, it's become apparent that that is simply not the case.

Maybe we just speak different languages. Maybe we just need an interpreter.

I need to see you fight for us, fight for our marriage, fight for our family, fight for me.

I don't mean for this to sound like I'm expecting you to do all the work, but the truth is that I've already done everything I know how to do. I've read the Bible, I've prayed, I've asked you what you needed from me, I've told you what I need from you, I've read multiple books about relationships & marriage, I've done what I knew how to do to be the best wife I know how, I've sought advice from trusted friends, I've seen a therapist, I've done "homework", I've flat out lied on the floor and sobbed to God to just please help us, and I booked us on our marriage weekend.

While each of those may have yielded minimal results, nothing has fixed the problem.

And now I'm out of ideas.

So I'm coming to you, my husband, and asking you for help in saving our marriage. What are your ideas? What can you do? What can we do?

I need you to want this as badly as I do. I need you to show me that you care about our marriage, about us, as much as I do. I need to see you doing the work, and I need to see you fighting for us.

Because I don't know how much fight I have left.

Love you, Always,
    Your Wife

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Again. We're Doing it Again.

One of the repeated issues in our marriage came up... again.

I honestly don't know how to define the problem. Which is probably a big part of why we haven't figured out a solution, and therefore keep repeating the same behavior.

About once every couple of months, seemingly out of nowhere (for me), FireMan accuses me of being hateful (to put it nicely). He will tell me how nasty I have been to him and to FireGirl, how awful I have been treating them, etc, etc, etc.

And when I say "out of nowhere"... I mean it. Without fail, I never see this coming. I don't see this in myself. Even after he tells me this, I'll look back on the week or so prior, and I still cannot see what he's talking about.

On the rare instances that he provides me with specific examples (which is rare), I'll apologize, and let him know that it wasn't my intent to come off that way, I had no idea that's how I was coming off, etc. But the damage is done. He's hurt and he's angry and at this point I can't do anything right.

I've tried apologizing to the point of tears, I've tried arguing back that I didn't do anything wrong, I've tried ignoring it, I've tried asking him more details so I can analyze my behavior & figure out what I'm doing... all are met with the same response. I literally cannot do anything right at this point. Unless there's something I haven't thought of yet.

He angrily tells me that it usually occurs during my "time of the month" (indeed, it usually does), and that he knows it's my hormones, which is why he "lets it slide" until he can't take anymore.

I suppose this is a possibility.

But... well, first of all, I've never been a b****y PMSer. I'm a crier. The week before my period, I will cry at the drop of a hat. But in all my life I've never been legitimately accused of PMS making me nasty. Ever. By anyone.
Secondly, there's that whole, I have no idea what he's talking about thing. Not only do I not realize I'm doing it, no one around me seems affected, other than FireMan. Not even FireGirl, even though his rants usually include my horrible treatment of her as well.

There is another "monthly" possibility.

Let's just say... my old boss, when his wife was pregnant, well, the last few months of her pregnancy he made our lives a living hell. He was pissy, and nasty and just hard to be around. And he's normally a peach! Really! We finally concluded that he wasn't getting any. Sure 'nuff, a few weeks after baby was born, and he was back to normal.

So... there is one week a month where FireMan doesn't get any. And depending on how his shifts fall, it could be more than a week.

So I am currently working on a theory that maybe it's not my hormones at all, but his lack of sex that's making him nasty.

Or maybe it's a combination. Maybe my hormones make me a little off, and I could see where maybe I'm not as patient as normal, or as tolerant as normal or something, and maybe his not-gettin'-any self is on edge and irritable, and so you combine the two, and... WHAM!

I don't know. The problem we have is... well, it's not that I'm not willing to accept responsibility if I'm doing something wrong. If I'm being mean & hateful & nasty to my family I need to stop it. The problem is, I don't see it until he goes off on me, and then it's too late. Even then, I don't see what I've done. I honestly don't see it at all. So I can't stop it, I can't  make a change, if I don't know what I'm doing wrong.
So I've put it back on him, that he needs to (gently) tell me immediately if I act that way, that he can't expect me to change if he waits to blow up at me, etc.

But the thing is, he believes he's handling things the correct way, and honestly sees it as all on me. I'm the one behaving badly, so it's my responsibility to stop it. Him waiting to tell me, is his effort to be gracious to me.

So we end up with a situation where we both believe that we are completely innocent, that the problem is totally the other person's, but the other person doesn't see it at all, and in fact sees things in exactly the opposite manner.

And so, we repeat this scenario once every couple of months.

And I don't know what to do, or how to fix it.

I honestly don't know what I'm doing wrong. This time he gave me the instance when I "started" being nasty. And I was all like "What?!? Really? What are you talking about?" I disagreed with some unsolicited advice he gave me, but I don't see how what I said, or even how I said it, was mean, or nasty, or hateful, or anything. And he seemed unaffected at the moment, carried on as usual. It wasn't until the next morning, when I made another comment (which was said a little abruptly, because I was pretty sure he was gonna make FireGirl cry), and he went off on how pissy I had been lately. It snowballed from there.

Enter shock face.

And that's pretty much how it usually goes. We're having a conversation, or doing something together, minding our own business - twice in recent months I can remember specific instances where I recalled being happier than usual, in a better mood than usual, having a good time with him - when suddenly I am attacked out of the blue, no warning, feet knocked out from under me, good time immediately turned to bad.

I'm not telling you these stories to try to convince you of my innocence, but just to reiterate how much of a problem this is, that whatever is going on I am so oblivious to whatever I am doing that every. single. time. his accusations catch me by surprise. Because as far as I'm concerned, I'm just living my life, doing my thing as normal.
Oh goodness. Unless that's it. Maybe he just thinks I'm a b**** all the time? Lord, sometimes I wonder.