You are here

A new leaf

Notthedoormat's picture

So, from my previous post it's probably easy to see I'm fed up with how things have been and have finally started talking back. The tears have been gone, so I was able to find my voice finally. 

I have put up with a lot and I'm still here in my marriage for now for several reasons and I probably will be, realistically, for several more years. First reason is my dog. He needs a home with a big yard and I couldn't do that on my own right now. And my dog is extremely important to me, not something I'll give up.

Secondly, maybe now that my attitude has changed and I'm finding it easier to tell DH what I really think, he could wake up.  But I don't know that it would repair everything,  because I don't feel the same as I once did.  But I can build a happy existence within this relationship structure and take care of myself. 

Last night SD sent a message to the group text she has with DH and me (BM isn't in it), talking about a pricy gift she want to get sgk. I simply told her it was too expensive and left it at that. I know SD is an instigator of problems, despite her baby voice and playing like she doesn't realize she's done something wrong. And DH is at fault for not seeing it as often as he should.  He's seen it a few times and called it out,  but since grands have come along it has been very difficult for him to confront her about anything for fear of not getting to see them. 

Because of this fear, he has let my feelings be trampled on. And I have to own my part it allowing it.  I froze up, not really knowing how to respond or call him out on it.  That's on me.  

But I feel like the tide has turned because I spoke my mind without getting upset, crying and emotional. It's harder to tell someone they're being 'too sensitive' when they aren't a sobbing wreck.  And it felt good to say that I won't put up with this.  By put up with this I mean continue to play the happy SM and doting wife. I will continue to live in my home that I help pay for and contribute to. I will take care of that home like I always have. But I won't have the same empathy,  understanding and love for him. 

It may sound sad, but for me it's a step into taking back control of my emotions and my life.  The dynamic that we have now evolved when SD married a loser and reproduced. They took priority and BM was suddenly back in the picture because SD semi lives with her and often takes care of the grands. We live in another state, so DH is dependent on calls, video calls and texting to stay informed.  He worries because SD has made a mess of her life and her loser husband is in jail, where most of us hope he will remain.  

None of this is my responsibility,  nor is it DH's. And my life has been stirred,  shaken and poured over ice because he feels more responsibility towards grands than he does our marriage. 

I have ranted and raved here and I appreciate all the advice and support.  Without STalk, heaven knows the state I'd be in.

Thank you for listening!

Survivingstephell's picture

In a lot of ways, he has betrayed your for another woman, SD.  When overcoming a major betrayal, it's often that you need to burn down the current relationship and start anew.     It looks to me that you are at that point.  Starting the process.  It's not easy but it can be done if both are willing. I hope this works out for you.    

Notthedoormat's picture

Depend on him and his actions going forward. 

I have realized that SD was being passive aggressive in making that text group and in a lot of her past behavior.  She's a chicken and won't say anything to me directly and I have bitten my tongue in order to be "nice". I'm dropping the nice and moving forward with blunt honesty.  It didn't work so why make myself miserable by continuing, especially when she responds like this. No thanks. 

Rumplestiltskin's picture

"Keeping the peace" only works for so long. At some point you realize that you are enabling your relationship to remain something that you can't tolerate long-term. Speaking up can be looked at as fighting *for* your relationship, because if you tolerate things that are, to you, intolerable, eventually you will have to leave anyway. 

Notthedoormat's picture

I was in that role too long. I'm evicting them from my head space because I've had enough. I've spoken up very few times over the past several years and when I did it always ended with me in a crying heap, still invalidated and feeling less than.  But I'm not less than, so I'm not going to play that part anymore. I get to make that choice- not DH, SD or BM. 

I haven't said anything directly to SD or BM because I still think DH should, if he chooses to stand up for me. But that's not to say that I won't say something at some point to either SD or BM. At this point, I don't think it would be helpful,  beyond momentary gratification for myself. 




Merry's picture

Lots of relationships can and do survive betrayals, but you are right that it is never the same. So it's different, but that doesn't mean it can't be good again.

It sounds like you are on a healthy path. I know what you mean about feeling "frozen" when it is time for action. I'm sort of stuck there, but then we never see the skids and they make no requests of us. Their telephone relationship with their Dad is not my concern.

I hope you have continued peace and that your DH doesn't try to disrupt it.

Notthedoormat's picture

I think I've finally seen enough to know that right now the best thing for me is to try to carve out what happiness I can. I don't think DH would intentionally try to ruin it for me, but I can now see well enough to know that he isn't likely to stand up for me. That's lack of commitment to me on his part.  And I fully expect more of the same passive aggressive stuff from SD, and maybe from BM. Because I now expect it, it shouldn't throw me off as much as it has up until this point.

No, it won't be the same, even if things get better, just because I don't feel like I can trust him to have my back. I guess we'll see what happens,  but I feel stronger now than I have in years, so I have that going for me. I expect there will be more times that I lose my footing, but I've claimed my hill to die on.

I hope you have loads of happiness! We definitely don't deserve what they put us through!

Harry's picture

As telling DH , to only spend X amount of money on SGK.  Stop the talking to BM ( I woul make this the hill to died on)  ect. And see how DH does with this.  It's his DD,  she will never change, she makes bad decisions, will always make bad decisions.

The choice is,  keep SD at a $ amount for the year,  birthday gifts,holiday gifts, general buying her things. Or support her for life.  YOU. Open a bank account by yourself,

Have DH sign a paper saying he will not go after that money. When SD, SGD gets $,gifts. Equal money goes into your account , if things get bad then put all your money in that account. DH can support SD. He can support you. 

realized that SD was being passive aggressive, isn't your concern, it's the way DH reactes to it. You can not change SS  But you must change DH.  You can't have DH supporting SD.  SD screwing up her life isn't your concern.  How she is costing your home is main problem.

Notthedoormat's picture

And my conclusion is that because our family now has 3 gks now, we need to scale back spending.  I think DH and I need to have a conversation about $ amount limits and my thought is to spend $100 per skidult and gk for Christmas or birthday gifts or gift cash in that amount. I think it's reasonable.  And for incidentals we are asked for, if we do something for one, then an equal amount of $ should be given or set aside for the others  (hopefully this will deter doing extra). 

I didn't marry for money but I also don't intend to take on the cost of raising kids that aren't ours. SD had kids, she should figure out how to finance them.  

I did take money out of our account in the presence of DH and SD when she was visiting...I had DH stop by the ATM.  I told him the money was going in a vacation fund (in a safe at home). He didn't bat an eye.

I'm fed up with paying for fun things for others and having no fun myself.  I'm tired of walking on egg shells to appease others and I'm not doing it anymore.  They can like it or lump it. 

We made the choice to combine our finances a long time ago, so we need to agree on how to spend and save our money. I've not had a vacation or getaway for something besides visiting family in a long time and I need one badly, more than I need to visit people that wouldn't jump a puddle to visit me. 

Not doing it anymore.  I am over it.

BobbyDazzler's picture

(when she asks for money) maybe "we are done giving you money but will gladly help you find a job and set up some interviews. How does that sound?" :-)

Noway2b1's picture

I think your DHs vision of grandparenting will implode the more you step back and let him be the GRAND Daddy. Give it two years, that kid will be intolerable and he will lose all the joy of doing or gifting them anything. Sounds like he's doing his daughter a disservice in the grand parent department as well. 

Notthedoormat's picture

During the visit I kept thinking he wants to be like Big Daddy Warbucks or something....we aren't wealthy, but we do pretty good and in SD eyes she may think that equals wealth,  but we work our tails off.  

I think he may already see the brat-potential in SGD, but wouldn't admit it.  He definitely doesn't like bratty behavior, so you are probably right.

I just can't wrap my head around why he feels the need to do everything he wants to do for them.  I'd be verbally slaughtering my BK if one if them was in the situation SD is in, telling them to grow up and get a JOB. But that's me. 

He typically has no filter and speaks his mind,  but for some reason he's so afraid of not having access to sgks that he seems willing to do most anything.  It's clearly a major priority and I feel like it takes precedence over our marriage and that's where I have a problem.  I won't play 2nd fiddle.  I have to demote him in my priorities to find my own peace with life at this stage, so that's what I'm doing. Definitely a process.

Harry's picture

For gifts is a reasonable amount of money.  That $400 a kid per year. 

BobbyDazzler's picture

I learned, several years ago, to set boundaries and to NOT apologize for setting those boundaries in my home and/or life. My oldest SS was the problem in our marriage. He's a 40-year-old man ... a very nervy, self-entitled, condescending 'man'. My DH has turned a blind eye to this son's behavior but I have not.  The SS is now at the point where he doesn't want to be involved with me (or his father) because we don't kiss his ass.  TFB. Not only did I set boundaries with him, I have distanced myself from him, his wife, and their 2 kids. They have never involved my husband or me in their lives and the gkids don't know us.  That's a situation that my DH has to fix but doesn't put forth the effort and I've learned to wash my hands of it. Once you get to that wonderful place of mental and emotional distance, your life will be so much better. 

As for your DH, you'll have to remember to always speak your mind calmly.  I know how hard that can be. My DH has come to see this oldest SS for what he truly is but, of course, he still loves his son as it should be. I don't need to love him but I do have to tolerate him when he graces us with his presence.  If he steps out of line, I speak up.  I don't give a rats ass if he, or my DH, doesn't like it.

Good luck!

Notthedoormat's picture

Than I have been in a while- stronger. I've had to work my way up to this point.

I did find out I was wrong about something...I suspected that it was SD that started the text group,  but I asked to see DH's phone again over the weekend (he readily handed it over) and I was BM. I needed that confirmation to help me make sure I handle BM in the best way I can moving forward. 

The reality is that we WILL continue to have contact with BM and I know that.  It is what it is because that's the price of semi-regular contact with the grands and I know that means a lot to DH (though I don't think it should mean more than our relationship). 

But I'm my own priority now and will keep that foremost in the front of my mind.  I won't keep bleeding myself dry on the alter of the failed first family.