Crazy making

Is it supposed to be this difficult?  I know they say that relationships take work, but is this what they mean?

This post may not make a lot of sense because I’m tired and frustrated.  And living with passive aggression makes me insane.

Tonight after dinner, he said he wanted to ask me something.  He said he had turned on the computer and saw that I had been looking at a listing on craigslist for an apartment.  He wanted to know what that was about.  I told him I was just looking.  He asked why.  I told him that sometimes I think about leaving.  He told me that I didn’t need to do that.  I told him that there was nothing in the marriage for me; it was just empty and painful.

He said he wanted to give me everything I needed.  [Have you heard this before?]

He then asked me if I had read the part in the book “How We Love” about the Avoider marrying the Vacillator.   He thinks he is an Avoider and I am a Vacillator in our love styles, according to this book.   I told him I probably had read that part but I don’t remember specifically.

(The book became very painful to me and I had to stop reading it, although I do look up things in it and do plan to finish reading it at some point.)

So he said he thought things could be better for us, he thought the book had a lot of helpful information and that we could be happy together.   He said he hadn’t gotten to the part about helping the Avoider and Vacillator work together, but he thought it could help us.  I tried to tell him that I thought I was more of a Pleaser in my love style rather than a Vacillator, even though I do have some traits of Vacillator.  He wouldn’t listen to me about that.

Then he said, “You need to realize that we both need to make changes.”

This may not make sense, but that made me crazy!  I feel like for twenty-plus years I have been trying to improve our marriage (co-dependently, yes, I’ll give you that) and then for him to tell me, after him doing nothing for these past almost twenty-five years, that I need to realize that I need to make changes…..

Anyhow, I told him I couldn’t do this anymore, meaning that conversation, and I got up to go put away the groceries.

And I just cried and cried.  I wanted to die.   (That is my default thinking – or non-thinking – when I feel overwhelmed and just don’t want to deal with it anymore, when I don’t see any way out.  When I feel trapped.)

I felt like maybe he was trying to make improvements and I was being difficult and if he’s trying to improve, then I have to stick around and see if it gets better.  And maybe at some point it does get a little better, then I am still stuck in a purgatory of mediocrity.   And don’t want that.

I don’t want to deal with any of this.  I am so tired of trying to figure it out, of trying to be reasonable.  I am so tired.

Is it that hard to love someone?  Am I really that difficult to live with?  Are relationships really supposed to be this tricky and this complicated?   It makes sense that you have to give time and attention to a relationship, to the other person, but is it supposed to make you crazy?

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This entry was posted in covert abuse, emotional abuse, marriage, passive aggressive, passive aggressive behavior, relationships and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Crazy making

  1. Paula says:

    He is seriously manipulating your emotions and trying to make you pity him AND the marriage, it seems.

    You hurt him. Can’t you see his pain? He’s good but just misunderstood. You don’t do anything to help the marriage, so how do you expect things to get better? Pity him and do something!

    The sad part is he’ll never do anything the book recommends. He likes inertia; he craves it; it makes him comfortable. If you left, he’d fight to get you back only because HE can’t be bothered to do all the things you’ve been doing for him and for the marriage. He’s a big fat liar and is playing with your heart.

    • He is incredibly passive. I can’t believe the stuff he doesn’t do. I was wondering today how he’d survive trying to take care of all the things I do if I left. Or should I say, when I leave. And, yes, it always does come back to a pity party on his part. So immature!

  2. That man is just manipulating you. I can’t agree more with Paula on that part.
    You are such a great person and he’s taking advantage of you and your despair in the worst manner possible. I just get angry with that bastard without even having seen him…
    That man’s behavior is one of the reason that less sweet women than you kill their husbands.

  3. I have to agree with both of the above they are right. Mine tried the you need to change too to make this work thing. I told him what do I need to change I have not lied to you I have done everything I tell you I’m going to do and everything else around here like a single mom. If I change I will be like you and never do what I say and never do anything else around here and nothing will ever get done. But thats what he wanted so that then maybe I would just be happy and live the way he was living and I wasn’t doing that. He will fight to keep you there and he will fight to get you back. Mine said all kinds of things to get me to let him come back and to make me feel sorry for him. But it didn’t work I felt so much better and so much happier the day he took his stuff and left. I knew it was the right thing and what needed to happen for our family to be happy. He even tried to make me think he may do something to himself and everything else. If he was going to he wouldn’t be telling people and talking about it. It is just to get the pity and you to feel bad and take him back. Your lucky you do not have minor children to worry about. If you do decide to leave.

    • Yes, I am so thankful that I don’t have minor children to worry about when I leave. As long as he is telling me that I need to change, he really isn’t getting it!!! I’m not saying I’m perfect; not in the least. But he’s like an alcoholic who won’t admit it. And as long as he won’t admit to anything, he can’t see the need to change. Thanks for your comments! :)

  4. Isn’t 25 years long enough to wait? Murders are out of prison in that amount of time.
    First, it isn’t as innocent as he presented it that he knew what sites you had searched. He’s keeping tabs and will intervene.
    Second, he’s assigned you the role of evil and suggested you change. Our reaction is to try to change, but that will be met with disapproval for changing.
    Third, it’s not “hard” to have mutual love, you are not the diffacult one, tricks are for abusers, and time and attention are better left for yourself.
    Excuse the bluntness, please, and imagine the possibility of breathing a full and complete breath without looking around to see if you were caught.

    • Yes, twenty-five years is long enough to wait. You are right: changing will be met with disapproval. No matter what I do, it isn’t right. I like what you say, “It’s not hard to have mutual love.” I’ve often thought that if I were giving to him and he was giving to me, there would be an amazing synergy, that it could be great. But that hasn’t been my reality. Not in the least. And it has taken me a long time to learn that I need to spend my time and attention on me. I still struggle a lot with that. Thank you so much for your comments; I do appreciate them. He will be out of town for the next four days and I am so looking forward to that time and space without him!

  5. Karen says:

    Agree with all that he is manipulating. I’ve seen conversations go this way so many times! The latest for me was him saying, “I feel like I’m walking on eggshells around you.” Well, welcome to MY world for the last 25 years, buster! Mine’s out of town for the next week. Thank God.

  6. Heather Pellrin says:

    I wish I could talk to you in person. I have been married to the worst kind of passive aggressive person. He also has an avoidant attachment style. This man blames EVERYTHING he does on me from compulsive porn watching and masturbation, to spending money, running up debts, even to hating his job. He says I don’t have exciting enough sex with him (he lies about watching trannie porn, wearing women’s underwear). He tells me that he buys dildos for himself because I won’t wear a strap on in bed. EVERY attempt at communicating with him is met with him either hanging up on me or walking out of the room. He will even roll over in the middle of a conversation. Just two days ago he said the marriage is failing because there is no communication. I told him every time I try to communicate he gets up and walks away. He actually said – that’s because your not listening. HOW THE HELL DOES THAT MAKE SENSE. Every time I ask him a question about what he is doing or why he does something he will literally just stare straight ahead and stonewall me. He tells me I am crazy. He will suggest a way of managing money so that he doesn’t compulsively spend, then will turn right around and do exactly what he says he wouldn’t then tells me I am controlling. He constantly threatens me with divorce every time I even attempt to address the problems and OH Yeah, he has abandoned me and our two kids three times. He just came home without warning, emptied my bank account and drove 1800 miles away, THREE times. I no longer share any accounts with him and now he is mad because I have am two months from paying off my car and he can’t manage his money. So who does he blame – he blames me because he has to pay me for half the mortgage (which is only in my name) and half the utilities. He won’t talk about anything but then resorts to texting me that I need to go file child support, he wants a divorce but oh he loves me. He has literally blamed me for everything he does and all the problems in the marriage. He has also tried to obstruct my goals. I got into law school the first time I applied and had to leave after the first semester because he was constantly calling me complaining about the kids and threatening to leave them at home by themselves because “he can’t handle it”. I eventually got an MBA (Masters degree), and he threatened to not attend my graduation. However, he has never finished anything in his life. He also uses work as an excuse to not spend time at home. He says its because he can’t be around me, however he has routinely worked 60+ hours a week since day one. I have finally gotten a good job at a college and taken on teaching writing at night so I can survive without him. Once I get this car paid off and a credit card I have paid off, I am socking 2K away a month until I have enough money for a lawyer…if he doesn’t abandon me again before then. My email is xxxxxxxxxx. I would love to talk to you.

    • Hi! Thank you for sharing your story! Wow! He sure sounds like he’s a mess!!! And good for you for doing so much for yourself! That is awesome! Is there any way you can get away from him right now? It sounds like such an insane situation that you are in, but that is so great that you are making your plans for getting out. I’ve had others ask to contact me personally, but I like to keep the conversations here so others can learn from them, too. Feel free to leave as long a comment you want on any post and I will see it, as will others. I try to stay on top of answering all comments. Sometimes I don’t get to it right away, but the conversations that take place here on my blog are so important to me and mean so much to me. Please do keep me posted on how things are going for you! And thank you so much for taking the time to share your story! Take good care of yourself!

  7. I hope that things going are much better for you now than they were when you wrote this :) I got married last year in may to my college sweetheart of 4 years. I don’t know what happened then, did I not see? was it because I already had a bad, beaten childhood thanks to a set of parents who could never bring themselves to adopt that role? I don’t know.. I just wanted to run my dysfunctional family the first chance I got to, so I agreed to marry much sooner, much younger, only 23..just fresh out of college. he was my classmate at school too, but we never much talked, i met him online when i was college again.. he was sweet, shy, oh-so-soft, extremely naive, and never got angry, so bright at college, so un-damaged, optimistic. unlike me.. sad, easily angry, with an extremely low self esteem, maybe a non existent one.. and always looking for a relationship. part of why I had a long, bad one all through school with a guy who ultimately left me stranded with a nervous breakdown after school, i lost an year. got back to college, law school..met this guy.. and this time, I was determined, nothing would ever go wrong again. I will finally get that love I’ve been longing for all my life. he claimed to have a secret, silent crush on me all through school.. i was fascinated with the idea that someone EVER actually secretly admired me. We were lovers all through college, long distance. talk on the phone all night every night.. maybe more an an year into the relationship, I realised that he had a very covert, sort of hidden way of being angry, in that he’d just not tell me when he is annoyed…instead he’d choose to sleep all through months of conversation afterwards, or even if awake, simply not concentrate on what i m saying at all. I was a good observer and would point out the fact that I could feel when he was just nodding to what i said, and when i’d ask him what i was just talking about he’d not know.. for a long, pretty thick detail he’d not even know the topic i was conversing one. but he’d always defend himself saying that he cant be expected to reproduce the exact sentences i was but he knew in general what it was we were talking about.. which of course he had no clue about either.. but he wouldn’t accept and it kept making me going crazier on phone, crossing lines, sometimes even bursting in anger during my depressed phases with caustic abuses, only to feel wracked with guilt and apologise about it later.

    time passed and our wedding was fixed, i could never find any amount of enthusiasm in his voice on ph when i’d discuss about how we’d be going around the whole affair..i was exasperated by that, going by the fact that he had claimed me to be his one and only secret ‘dream girl’ crush since school and literally dreamed of us being together back then. I thought he’d be so happy, but I couldn’t even sense him being routinely happy or excited with the fact that our love was finally going to have the conclusion he always said was his dream. I thought, its pressure, marital stuff. guys do that.. but then the wedding happened. apparently he got his job much before we got married, a good one at that (software engineer), but couldnt pay to get me a ring. I wasnt very bothered because i felt we too needed to invest other, more pratical stuff. but till date, almost an year has passed, and despite my having mentioned in the almost nagging way i do now, about any sort of token of our marriage, that ring hasnt come.
    it is definitely not a question about anything material, i lived with a set of parents who were well to do but provided me with much less that what one could imagine, so i learnt to grow up with no demands and low expectation with people on a general level, esp when it came to making me feel special, i was never really daddy’s girl or mom’s princess at home, having never had anything close to a birthday party thrown for myself, i never knew how it felt to be pampered either. but when i had my first bday this january after marriage, i thought they’d be something..but the whole day went by with nothing happening at all. and when i told him i thought he’d do something about it later… he acted so surprised, like it was my fault i didnt convey to him that i wanted something special to be done on my birthday!
    every single day, almost every day wraps in the same, ruthlessly passive manner. i’d wait sitting next to him,him playing his games or watching his videos on youtube after coming back home from work. I’d wait for hours for him to talk, touch, kiss me..anything, or if we have had an issue i have already talked to him about at length, or even an outright scuffle the previous day.. he would never say a thing about it, just laugh and have a good time with his pass time.. and when after hours, and now mostly days of this kind of ignoring, driving-up-the-wall behaviour, i’d finally break down myself, pull my hair out almost literally, yell my throat sore and even do strange crazy hand-movements in bouts of depressive mania asking him to LOOK at me LISTEN to me and WHY he isnt saying anything when he’s supposed to..he’d look at me with this shocked expression just like I’ve lost my mind (which i probably have too now) and like i’m being a mad witch with the most unrealistic expectations ever. and he’d have these eyes with the injured innocence of a two year old and i’d hate myself for being this nagging pissy wife that i have become thanks to my bad childhood and depression. Its me, its always me. ever since we wedded, we’ve been intimate in once like weeks and each time i point it out he has a different very plausible reason for it which of course never ever has anything to do with his love or the lack of it, its always something at work or in my mind or in my ‘damaged’ behavior that gets to him and he cant make love to me. despite the fact i have never had a problem with libido, somehow it happens to be my fault too that he doesn’t approach me, or is scared to. god only knows why when each time i tell him that i want him every day. but its always another reason EVERY SINGLE TIME. not only there but in every other aspect, its always something that doesnt have to do with him but its nonetheless a very plausible, justified reason and I would have to accept it like there was no alternative.

    I know this post has been such a crazy-sounding, long rant.. I know. but I’m just so tired.

    • Hi, I am SO sorry I didn’t approve this comment earlier. It was an oversight on my part. You are welcome to rant here anytime you want. And it should be posted without having to wait for approval, too. When I was first married, I decided that I wasn’t going to be a nagging wife, that I was going to be patient and wait for him to grow up, not realizing that he never would step up and take that responsibility. It is so hard – I tried and tried and tried to be such a good wife, but it didn’t make any difference to the relationship. Like you, the warning signs were there before, but I didn’t recognize them. And then we beat ourselves up because they don’t treat us right! We want to be loved so badly … but we attach ourselves to someone who can’t give us that love. Please don’t apologize for your rant. It IS crazy making to live with someone who is passive aggressive. It does make us very, very tired. Someone told me yesterday that I need to have relationships on MY terms. And if anyone doesn’t want a relationship on MY terms, to move on and find people who DO want relationships on MY terms, because they agree with my terms and it is their terms, too. So I’ve been thinking about that today. We give too much but don’t know how to have back in return what we need. And trust me – I understand about the sexual frustration!!!

      Are you going to leave? Whatever you decide to do, please take very good care of yourself. Do what makes you happy. Go to Al-Anon or Co-Da. Read “The Language of Letting Go” daily. Surround yourself with people who truly love you and care about you. You ARE worthy of love.

      Again, I apologize and please do feel free to vent here ANYTIME you need to!!!

  8. prachi says:

    Hello,
    I just needed to talk, I know I did post a long,in parts irrelevant rant here..but it all zeroed down to the passive aggressiveness of my husband of 1 year and lover of 4. It took me a while to know and of course not before it was too late. I’m going through an episode of major depression these past weeks so the cracks are beginning to show all the more. I hope you could put my post up here, or if it was too long for that, then just show me some love, because i am so hoping to read a few good words from anywhere, anyone…

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