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And JUST like that.. BOOOM there it blows again

htd_sh's picture

And BOOM! 

If you saw my earlier post, you know I essentially BROKE down second guessing mine and DHs conversation that occurred last night. Well, I broke down tonight too. Even worse. Because I broke down and it all came out as diarrhea of the mouth because I lost it. I completely opened up to DH about my opinions on EVERYTHING, just not in the right way.  

We disagree about BM manipulating and taking advantage of him. I see it. He does not. 

I opened up that I feel emotionally and physically neglected (not sex wise, but intimacy wise). I recognize that we don’t show love in the same ways. We don’t have the same love languages, if you will. 

I opened up that I want to be acknowledged for taking on a situation (stepmom and dealing with skids and BM) that I did not create. I want recognition for changing my entire life (accepting his children and situation) so that I can be with him. 

I opened up that I WANT to be with him. He interpreted my perspectives as wanting a divorce because I told him how HARD this role of SM and second wife is. I explained that it is literally the complete opposite. It is about how much I WANT to be with him and how much I pour into this to make it work because the bottom line is that I LOVE him whole heartedly  

I explained that nobody else (including DH) can determine the degree to which I am impacted by these changes and difficulties in this role. Only I can say how much I am affected by these things because those are MY feelings and nobody can belittle them. (I consider this two week battle as traumatic to me even though he or anyone else may not view it that way). 

I explained that EVERYTHING I do is with his best interests in mind  whether it be determining how child support is paid (there’s no court ordered child support it is all unofficial) or not putting up with BMs actions that I view as inappropriate. it’s because I will FIGHT for him. I will always stand by his side and defend him and won’t let anyone try to USE the man I love.

It wasn’t a constructive conversation. I didn’t focus on being therapeutic and receptive and listening. For once, I COMPLETELY focused on MY needs. I poured my heart and soul and thoughts out at him because I want him to know what’s going on with ME. I want him to understand that the foundation of what I have been doing is on his behalf. 

I know this is a DH/DW problem & not a BM/skid problem. But these problems are stemming from the stepmom & second wife role I’ve taken on. I feel like I have to transition into this role. We have been together for almost 2 years, but married for 5 months. I feel like things changed when we got married. Not our relationship, but my commitment and dedication to him and our relationship and I think THAT is why this is STILL a transition. Though we’ve been together for two years, things change when you say “I Do” because that is a new level of the relationship. 


fairyo's picture

You want him to understand that what you have been doing is on his behalf.

You explained that everything you do is in his best interests.

You will always stand by his side and be ready to defend him.

These are exactly the things I said to TheX when our relationship came under fire due to his attitude to the skids.

It took me a while to realise he didn't want me fighting any battles- all he wanted was for me to shut and go along with everything he wanted to do for his offspring. 

I had to walk away because I realised I was neglecting to fight for myself- and they were destroying me.

He won't understand that you are trying to hlp him, because all he sees is you getting in the way of his 'quiet' life as he sees it.

Please  start and take note of advice here- start with you... leave them alone.

Kes's picture

It took me a number of years of taking sh!t in my relationship with DH and his previous family, before I started advocating for myself.  Prior to that, although I had disengaged, I didn't really feel like I had the right to advocate for myself and lay down firm boundaries.  I am much better at doing this now - and so is DH.  He no longer takes nonsense from his daughters, on the whole, and never from NPD BM.  

Carry on advocating for yourself and never let your sense of self get lost in the stupid stuff that goes on with the step set up.  

susanm's picture

They don't get the simple math.  We took on a massive amount of baggage by marrying a man with an ex and children.  That was a choice because we love them and we want that to be recognized and respected.  Their response that their life got more complicated because they married us and we should appreciate that is baseless.  They would be getting the same amount of entitled tantrums from the skids and the ex when they married any woman other than BM.  If they did not want to deal with it they should have stayed with BM or at least stayed single and kept dancing to her tune while living in a separate house.  It has nothing to do with us. But we could have married a childless man.  We are not asking for a parade or a gold star on our forehead.  Just stop acting like there are no legitimate issues to address regarding the imbalance of baggage that we each have brought into the marriage and take steps to minimize the impact on us. 

Plantmom's picture

One of the few things my husband does right is appreciate that I brought more to the table than him, he brought baggage, financial obligations and SD and BM. He knows that he's less of a catch due to them and spoils me accordingly. What sucks is that he holds me to a high standard. BM never had to deal with and ex wife and she behaved far worse than I ever will and got away with it. 

htd_sh's picture

OMG YES YES YES YES YES!!!! You could not have said it better. DH didn’t understand when I explained that I want recognition. But that’s what it is!!!! I don’t need a gold star or a trophy or even him to thank me! I just want it ACKNOWLEDGED that I have less baggage and I CHOSE and ACCEPTED his baggage because I want to be him. I CHOSE DH. I KEEP CHOOSING DH. I WILL ALWAYS CHOOSE DH. I just want him to realize that I choose him when I have the ability to walk away at any minute. 

susanm's picture

They don't want to hear that though.  Because what they hear is not "I love you and have chosen to be with you dispite the issues" but "I could have done better and still can but you will always be saddled with your past."  Both are equally true of course but one is loving and the other is just the way it is and is their own doing.  If they have not come to terms with their mistake in marrying and procreating with the wrong woman then anything that reminds them of it is like a hot poker in the eye.  But they DID and that is that.  I think a lot of men simply did not do the work they needed to do to get over what happened in the past so that they could move forward freely.  Maybe they were lonely or needed help with the kids or felt that BM was never going to "let them go" so there was no point in even trying.  But they did both of us a disservice by representing themselves as having moved on when they were actually still caught in the past in so many ways.  

tog redux's picture

My DH once said to me, "I can't believe you have stayed for all of this, and I'm grateful you did. I'm not sure I would have." He's also told me he's sorry for dragging me into this mess.  He does that regularly, when the drama heats up.  He's not perfect, but he absolutely does get that I've put up with crap I would never have dealt with if he didn't come into my life.

Not all men are clueless dolts who can't possibly understand how their immense baggage affects their new wife. Don't let him play that game.

susanm's picture

I think it is awesome that your DH is so appreciative of you and what you have had to deal with.  You are very fortunate.  I agree that the men who fail to acknowledge the obvious truths should not be let off the hook as clueless dolts.  Unless they have suffered head trauma no one is that stupid.  The refusal to acknowledge the inequality in baggage is indeed a choice.  I think the reasons range from outright narcissism to outsized unnecessary guilt to a childish wish for everything to just go away.  I don't think it is always malicious.  I think sometimes it is just sad and rather weak.  Of course, neither is a particularly great realization after the marriage vows have been said!

tog redux's picture

That's why I'm still here. He appreciates my support and he does his best to insulate us from the drama.  He does at times want me involved with court stuff, but truthfully, I've volunteered because it helps my anxiety.

DH and I joke that the only baggage he got from me is an annoying brother and a neurotic dog, lol.

I sometimes wonder why some of the women on this board stay.

Swim_Mom's picture

I was married to a man for almost 18 year who was unable to have a productive discussion. Everything set him off on a defensive tirade. He was too narcissistic to ever see or listen to anyone else's point of view. Now that our kids are all teenagers, he treats them the way he treated me. (I won't even go into the karma of the different paths our lives have taken over the last 5-6 years!). Of course he will lose in the end as they don't want to be around him - who would!? Feels like winning the game 78 to 1 so I'm not gloating; it's just sad.

I am now married to a mature, fully adult man I can discuss anything with. Including money, his ex, my ex, his kids, my kids, you name it. It is wonderful, but it is also table stakes in my opinion, not optional. If I had a choice, I would rather not be married than to have a husband like my ex again. Don't put up with your DH's shit - life is too short to allow yourself to be pushed around/taken for granted and generally not validated. Do not allow your marriage to be unbalanced where you do all the giving and conceding and he can intimidate you because of his irrationality and refusal to listen.

dysfunctionally_blended's picture

I could have wrote this years ago! I had these exact feelings...

But it was something my SO said to me one day during a drag out war, and it stuck...

(I will summarize here as these may not be the exact words. But close to it.)

"Nothing you do or say will change the issues that come from my life. While I appreciate you wanting to fight for me, in the end it won't make a difference. You can't change crazy. The only thing I need from you is you. I can handle skids. I can handle HCBM. What I can't handle is the disappointment and disdain from you due to my issues surrounding step life. To be honest I think you can do better than me. I feel like I bring you down.

I just need YOU to be with ME."

He didn't need my help. 

He understood the complexity of it all and accepted it as 'it will be what it will be but it won't ruin us'. What I was doing was the exact opposite, 'this is ruining us and I can't let it be'.

See the difference?

As soon as I let it all go, as soon as I stepped back and said 'oh well', things began to settle into place. I didn't HAVE to be a SM. I didn't HAVE to be second family. I didn't HAVE to do anything!

And I don't. I am not a SM. I simply support my SO as a parent. And I am not the second family. I am actually the first woman my SO loved and respected by CHOICE. Not because it was expected or pushed. Not because there are shared kids. But because he truly believes in who I am.

My advise is to set your boundaries. Have the hard talk about what you want your life together to look like. Then let it all go. Let the pressure of being the token SM and second wife go. And every day push to make your life better despite his past life.  

tog redux's picture

Yes, I am in the very same place, right down to DH telling me I'm the first person he really wants to be with, and not because of obligations.

htd_sh's picture

You guys post things that strike my soul. It is AMAZING. 

I NEVER thought about it this way. I NEVER thought about that. I fight for and defend DH everyday. Why? Because that’s what I want HIM to do for ME. That’s not what he wants ME to do for HIM. He feels he can fight his own battles. If he wanted someone to fight for him or defend him, he would’ve searched an attorney, not fell in love with me. 

Want2's picture

“I want him to understand that the foundation of what I have been doing is on his behalf.”

But if what he sees is you suffering he may interpret this to mean he is making you suffer and that you want him to understand he is making you suffer.

For real the pain is evident in your posts. You almost seem on the brink of a nervous breakdown. I think this is more than just a simple need for validation on your part which would be normal.

 You are very adamant that you want to be seen as your husband’s rescuer but it might not be that he agrees that he needs one and he might not see you in that light at all. Hence he cannot give you the feedback you want from him.

If this is the case or at least close to it, you have some decisions to make. Is your need for recognition within normal parameters? Is he simply withholding it on purpose? Is it something he can learn to do? If no to that, is lack of it something you can not only live with but be happy despite its absence?

htd_sh's picture

How on earth do you make these decisions? I know thats a question that is not "answerable", but its what i keep asking myself. i am a strong believer that "whats meant to be is meant to be", so right now I feel like.. "am I supposed to get divorced and this whole life event has made me stronger?" OR "are we going through this because it will make our marriage stronger?" again, questions that cannot be answered....

Also, this: "For real the pain is evident in your posts. You almost seem on the brink of a nervous breakdown" has never felt so real. I have mental health problems to begin with and I think THAT is why this is spiraling out of control. My mental health issues are making it harder for me to make a decision or see things clearly WHILE this situational stress is making my mental health issues "act up"... and i think that is a HUGE part of this.