I owe an apology to my fellow bloggers. I missed my blog day last week. At first, it was because I had completely lost track of the days due to the holiday pressures. But then, it became broader “personal” issues. And, that is the time I should have most embraced writing a blog. When we set up the idea for this website, our intention was to speak on topics of relevance to women. The idea was to be as genuine as possible and talk about our real problems. And, we do. We have topics like cleft palates and autism. But, I have not been completely transparent in my issues. You see, my marriage is a wreck. Nobody who knows me would realize that. I don’t talk about it. I think it is part of the status quo syndrome. If I acknowledge the issue, I will need to do something about it. Plus, I think when I write about this, I just sound whiny. I actually wrote a blog on this several months ago. It has never been published because I didn’t really want to acknowledge how bad things are.
I will try to give you a flavor of my marriage. Please realize that this is only a sampling. The reality is more a death by a thousand small cuts. But, that is really too much to rehash.
My husband thinks he is passive. And, I have been reflecting upon that. I wonder, if he is so passive, then why is everything always done his way? I felt certain there was more to the story, so I started looking for stories like mine online. This is part of the reason why I am sharing now. These stories (while depressing) validate that I am not alone. My story is not unique. There are others who have lived through similar relationships. As I reviewed these stories, I realized that my husband is not passive, rather passive aggressive.
Every event is a battle. I never realized it before, but he is always jockeying for the most advantageous position. He is always setting up his “battle field”. It appears that he takes pleasure in making me angry. Because when I get angry, he goes on attack mode. And, I think attack mode makes him feel powerful. It makes me feel sore. Like physical abuse without any outward signs. I only ever say 1 sentence before he attacks. And, I shut down.
Let me give you an example of how he sets me up… he is working this week. That means he works from 9 pm to 9 am every day. I am off this week (holiday break). We have 3 kids. My daughters have sports lessons. I intentionally scheduled their lessons at 10 am so that I would not have to drag my 5 year old son with me every day. And, there are some things that I would like to do that I really can’t do when dragging kids along (think haircut). About a month ago, his work said they wanted him to do some training. It was scheduled for his week off. He told me this, and that he moved the training to his work week. He did not tell me which day, nor week. So, yesterday, he didn’t come home until after 3. I know he wanted me to question where he had been. But, I had been reading about passive aggressive behavior and knew I was being set up, so I didn’t say a word. But, I could tell that he was looking for an argument, so I just kept going to other rooms when he came near. Eventually, he gave up and went to bed. But, because I didn’t bite on that, he didn’t come home today until 11:30. Once again, knowing that I am being set up gives me some insight, so I didn’t question it at all.
Here are a couple examples of the more egregious behavior. Last spring (March), we were talking with my son’s counselor. I forget how the topic came up, but I ended up explaining to her how my husband had (2 years previously) not given me any gift for my birthday and about how hurtful that was to me. My birthday was in May. Guess what he gave me this year? He sent me a text in the morning that said “Happy Birthday”. That was the only acknowledgment of my birthday from him. There was no dinner, cake, present. Nothing. I do have to say that my fellow blogger Queue Murphy had arranged a luncheon to celebrate my birthday. I’m sure she had no idea the depth of my appreciation for that. It gave me something positive to hold on to that night. I didn’t say anything about it at the time. I was so hurt, I couldn’t come up with the words. I finally brought it up months later. And, he very aggressively replied, “I gave you a Mother’s Day gift, that counts for both.” I told him in no uncertain terms that I never wanted any gifts from him.. EVER. And, that I would also not give him a gift. It was wonderful at Sweetest Day. No gifts – expectations fulfilled. But, he bought gifts for our anniversary in November. I refused to accept them. I don’t want to be lulled into having any expectations. But, at Christmas, he took our son shopping to buy gifts for me. And, I love the gifts Brock picked out. He gave me a Picachu pillow and Candyland (so we could play it together). But, my husband also wrapped the gifts that he had bought for our anniversary. And, he wanted me to know they were the same gifts…. he wrapped over the existing gift wrapping. When I got to that, I looked up at him. And, he gave me the most malicious look I have ever seen. It seems to say, you will do what I want whether you like it or not… I am the boss of you. And, the gifts were very “girly”. Perfume and facial products. If you knew me, you would know that I would never use these kinds of things. I asked him later why he picked these items for me. He answered that his female co-workers suggested them. This told me that he didn’t get them for me, he got them to show the people at work what a caring spouse he is.
Here is another example…. he is diabetic. He was having problems regulating his blood sugar (it kept climbing). He has a pump, and the reality is that he probably didn’t have the line in properly. I told him to go to Urgent Care. I went to work. He went to Urgent Care, and they took him to the hospital. He called me from the hospital. I immediately found my boss to tell him why I was leaving, then I went to the hospital. A couple months later, I was not feeling well. I left the kids with him and went to Urgent Care. Urgent Care thought it was my gallbladder and sent me to the ER. I called him to tell him that I was going to the hospital. This was morning. I finally called my brother to go wait with the kids and tell him to go to the hospital (basically shaming him into coming). He got there just before I had to sign all of the paperwork to get operated on (around 10:30 pm). And, when I was finally released from the hospital a couple of day later, I had to wait to leave. Because he wasn’t there to pick me up. Even though I told him the time I was being released.
So, now you have a flavor of my story. I’m at a point now where I realize something has to change. Perhaps it is because it is New Year’s Eve and a time for reflection. Perhaps, it has just built to the point where I cannot bury my head in the sand anymore. But, what to do is the real question. Divorce is the easy answer… for me. But, as you know, my son has emotional issues. So, I’m not sure how this will affect him. I’m looking for any solutions. Comments?