It sounds like the idea that the divorce might be really happening is hitting home for you this week. You have made contact with Dave's relatives and have been able to share what is going to happen, making this feel even more real. You will probably still see them afterwards since they are close to you and your family, but it still puts the thoughts into your mind of how this will all work out once you and Dave are separated. That can bring up a number of feelings. Have you spent time thinking through life after Dave? You have been hit here and there with situations like his nephew's family visiting, but how much of it has been in your thoughts? It might help to think about not only how much it's in your thoughts, but what feelings you have associated with it. You mentioned fear, which sounds very normal. You don't know how Dave will react. And given that (as you noted) his behavior has gone back to how it used to be, he may not be expecting the divorce at all. Or he may have decided that ignoring the whole situation will make it all go away. Either way, there is a sense that you expect him to react negatively and possibly abusively and you will have to accept whatever reaction he has. Just as you did with telling Poppy and Sam about the papers last week, you may want to take some time to think about the papers arriving and plan out some ways you can control what happens. There is no reason why you have to sit and wait on Dave's reaction to the letter. Having responses you can implement can help. Dave's behavior is never going to make sense unless he decides to address it. He seems to live his life based on control. He wants his way and demands he get it. When you think about your response to him when he gets the letter, it may help you to take a look at how he does act in every day life. As we talked about before, he seems to approach life at a developmentally arrested age, maybe around 12 to 14 years old. He does not seem to know how to balance his emotions with reality and responsibility. He reacts to his own needs first, which is more than likely going to be his reaction to the letter. As you think it through, you and I can work on ways for you to respond, giving you an idea of how you can react no matter what Dave does.You are doing the right thing, Rose. You have mentioned this to many people and I don't recall you saying that anyone has tried to tell you it wasn't a good idea. You and the kids are in a bad situation and all of you are being abused. Healing can only start when you and the kids are away from the cause of the pain. Kate
It sounds like your session with K was interesting. It's good that Dave went out so you could relax. If he chose to go to the pub, that is definitely on him! There are so many other places to go. Or, he could just give you the privacy you deserve and occupy himself with chores. I'm sure you could provide a good sized list for him, right?
I am so sorry to hear about your dog. Poor puppy. It is so sad when they start to show signs of passing on. I hope you are able to find a vet in the morning to care for him. Let me know how he does.
Good night, Rose. I cannot tell you how glad I am to be here for you!
Yum, a tea cake sounds really good (can you tell I'm hungry?!). I am so sorry about Jack. You must miss him. It leaves such a gap in your family when a pet dies. It's good to know that Dave can feel sad about Jack's passing. Not that I wish that on anyone, but showing healthy emotion is good. I can understand your reluctance to respond to him though. So many times he has caused you pain and not provided any comfort or concern for you at all. It can make you feel resentful, hurt and angry when he asks for comfort from you. I could be that you feel shut off because you are dealing with some very overwhelming emotions. Sometimes it can all be too much and your natural instinct is to shut down. It can be a protective reaction to keep you from feeling emotionally overrun by all the conflicting and painful feelings. You may also be shutting down in anticipation of Dave getting the letter. You are expecting to have him react in a bad way and by closing off, you may feel better able to cope. Blocking out his reaction or at least taking the edge off it keeps you from reacting strongly. We have talked about Dave's reaction to the letter a lot, but what do you feel your reaction might be?Kate
Rose,It sounds like you expect Dave to become overwhelmingly upset and that you have no recourse to respond. You mentioned some of your feelings around the letter coming but not what you expect to say to Dave when it does come. It seems that you feel that you maybe are not allowed to respond (guilt that you did something wrong?) or that you might be too fearful to respond.Based on your past interactions with Dave, what you might want to think about is how you feel about not only the letter, but all that he has put you through to get you to this point. I know you Rose, you did not come to this decision lightly. You resisted, fought it and tried to find ways around it. That was perfectly fine to do because it helped you look for every reason in the world why you shouldn't do it so now all you have left are the reasons why you should do it. But when that letter comes, behind it are all the emotions, tears, pain and abuse you suffered for so many years. And all the kids suffered too. The upsets at home, the yelling and screaming, the embarrassment, shame and sorrow. When you focus on all of that, you may balance out the guilt you feel for following through with what you had needed to do all along. You may not feel you have rights, Rose, but you do. You are just as valuable as Dave is and just as human. You deserve to live like you want to and have choices just like anyone else. If you are still having Dave's relatives over, maybe you could still some time to talk with his nephew's wife? She may be able to offer you some support.You are not lying to Dave when you don't bring up the letter. He knows the deal and how you feel. He choose to ignore it for his own comfort, but he does know. You are not springing this on to him in the middle of a loving marriage. He has abused you and the kids. Getting out is for your good and the kids well being. And if Dave cannot put you first, then you will have to do it. Kate
:) You're welcome.
I'll see you in a few. It was so nice chatting with you like this. I felt like we really talked.
Wow, Rose. You are amazing. You did it. This is the moment you have been working towards for so long. Dave really tried to blame you again, saying that this was nonsense (putting down and minimizing what you feel) and tried to change your perception of how things really are (but I've changed!) but you stood your ground. I wish I could give you one of those hugs right now!
When you have time, let me know how you feel. You have been on my mind all night.
Thanks for letting me know. I'm a bit anxious to see that this all turns out well for you and I appreciate you taking the time to keep me up to date. I hope you are able to get some time away from him to think things through and plan out your night.
I agree with you, it sounds like he is approaching this softly first then the storm may come later. I certainly hope not, but it's good to be prepared.
I am glad to hear you are feeling strong about this. This is your day, Rose!
What do you feel you might do if he does resort to something more intense?
He's gone out. That's a relief. He didn't say he was going, just went. I hope he talks tonight, but I expect there will e shock all round, and lots of craziness directed at me, but I don't care. I really feel the ball is rolling now, the letter says that if Mak (atty) doesn't hear from D in the next 14 days then he will go ahead and present the petition to the court.
So here will be no further words tonight, he'll be gathering his thoughts for the next stage of the plan. If there is any alcohol on board over the next few days then the upset will really start. But I am soso relieved that I have got past this hurdle, he has no idea what's been going on in my head, apart from the many BIG hints that I have dropped over the last few weeks, but he has just brushed them of, he doesn't think I can do it. And he would have been right if I hadn't had all my troops behind me (sorry, cheerleaders!)
I am going to stand my ground, stand up to him, not be afraid of him, be positive, tell him I have backup and support, be upset if I need to be. I was thinking earlier out in the rain with Lola that I have never been straight with him as to his shortfalls, I have preferred not to make him feel inadequate, or bad about hiself. I guess that is a mistake of mine, had he known he (unlikely) could have done something about it,but I was protecing his ego, self esteem, but I do blame myself for lack of communication.
Well, I've done it now. I think I have tried, he has had a month to prove to me that he is changed beyond recognition, but he hasn't, and today has been his usual response to things he can't handle- going to bed- that's not very inspiring. I know he's upset and probably can do little else, but he's off out tonight, no change there.
So I'm really on my way!! Maybe today is one of the easier days. I was trying to rememer some of the responses that Adele and I talked about earlier, could just about remember a few, that were encouraging to D, like he will be more free (!) to do as he pleases, or he might meet someone and be able to have a relationship again, and his time with the kids will be quality time, they will want to be with him and there wil be less upset between them and him etc. But he doesn't see there is a problem, so those respnses will probably fall on deaf ears.
Anyway, one day at a time, one foot in front of the other. Pillar of Salt, no looking behind me. Please remind me, forwards only, no 2 ways.
Rose, It's great that there is a time limit on Dave's response to the letter. Otherwise, he would have the excuse to drag this out for as long as he likes.Troops is good too! I like it just as much :)Just from a psychological point of view, it probably would have not had any effect for you to have been straight with Dave about his short falls. You have tried to talk with him but he consistently blames you and thinks it is all your fault. I agree that it is very unlikely he would have gained any insight just from you telling him that his abusive behavior hurt you and the kids. People who are abusive and whose behavior centers on themselves have a very difficult time taking responsibility for anything they do. It usually falls onto the person they have the conflict with. And you have seen that over and over with Dave. He has blamed you and the kids each time he did something to you. So communicating with him would most likely have done nothing but got you hurt even further. I think you are right, there is little to no change in his behavior, even with the divorce letter, which is kind of interesting. Being asked for a divorce is a pretty big wake up call that something is not right in your marriage. And Dave did not seem to respond any differently at all, at least not yet. I would think that he would be talking to you as to why you feel this way and how can he fix it. Pointing out the good things to Dave about having his freedom is an option. But Dave's past history shows that he needs to be dependent on someone for support. You mentioned many times that Dave thinks of himself as a free spirit and anti authority. But in order to hold that belief, someone has to be the responsible one. And since he refuses to be that person, whomever he is with gets the job. So this divorce will either make him grow up fast or he will be looking for a new caretaker to support him, based on his past behavior.You are definitely on your way, Rose! Forward is the only direction for you! Talking out any guilt or remorse you begin to feel will help stop you from looking back and giving in. And keep thinking about all the fun and adventure that awaits you. The chrysalis is definitely shaking now. It may even be hatching.....?Good night Rose! I hope you have wonderful dreams full of the possibilities ahead.Katex
PS I just saw your other posts. Thank you for the picture! I love that one. Yes, I've seen Far and Away. It was a good movie, wasn't it?
Let me know if you are still feeling anxious tomorrow.
Talk to you tomorrow.
You sound so tired! I hope you get some time to rest tonight after your visit with Cathy.
If Dave does start anything tonight, have you decided what you might do?
How do you feel about your mother and father's response to your poem? You shared something pretty deep with them, which was quite a risk.