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How to forgive my spouse and move on

Discussion in 'Married Life' started by kavya007, Dec 9, 2007.

  1. kavya007

    kavya007 Gold IL'ite

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    Hi Folks,

    I have been married for 6 years and have a 1 year old child. Till my son was born, I had always felt secure in my marriage and strongly believed that our marriage was a very happy and loving relationship. I had some issues with my in-laws and my husband but overall I was very happy.

    I had gone through a high risk pregnancy and I delivered my son through a scheduled C section. My husband and I were just hoping to cross the pregnancy without any issues and we were completely unprepared for the postpartum experience.

    I went through the initial baby blues and my husband would get very upset because I was crying all the time. I could just not cope up with the sleepless nights, sore nipples, incision pain and the round the clock feedings. My son was born with a low weight so the doctors were very insistent on feeding him every 2 hours round the clock. So my husband pressured me a lot to feed him round the clock and I found it extremely hard. This would end up in a lot of fights. Once in fact just 10 days after my delivery, when I was crying a lot in pain my husband told me "don't torture me by crying all the time". I was extremely hurt by his statement. I was crying in extreme pain and he found my crying a torture !! He had always taken care of me extremely well throughout my marriage and I found his behavior very hard to accept. I did not get his support and love during the time I needed him the most. Added to that after 2 weeks of delivery, I told him that I would like him to take off an extra week because I was feeling very dizzy. He refused saying that he had some important work at office. I used to work in the same office he did and I knew that there was nothing really important at work. After 1 month of delivery when I gave my son pumped breast milk in the bottle he once told me "The doctor told you only to give bottle once a day and you are giving it thrice a day. What kind of mother are you". Such statements hurt me immensely. I was doing the best I could even under such enormous pain.

    Gradually the communication broke down between us. I used to feel extremely lonely and desolate. Luckily my mom was with me during that time. So I had at least a bit of support. I would confide a lot in my mom and this would make my husband insecure. Another sore point between me and my husband were my in-laws. I had always felt my husband only supported my in-laws. This feeling worsened after my my delivery. There were huge communication issues between me and my husband. This was the first time I had faced such a issue with my husband. I felt so tired crying all the time.

    My husband suffers from hyperthyroid. Hyperthyroid makes a person very irritable and nervous. We had believed that his problem was under control. After 3 months we went for a routine checkup and we discovered that his hyper thyroid problem was completely out of control. The doctor told me his condition is very critical and she immediately increased his medication. Within a few weeks I saw a dramatic change in his personality. By that time he understood the damage he had done to me and he apologized over and over again. He even changed his attitude towards his parents. But I had gone into a shell and I could just not get over it.

    After suffering for a few more months, I started counseling sessions. By that time my MIL had come. For the first 4 months everything was fine then we had a nasty argument. We exchanged extremely harsh words. My husband supported me. But my MIL spoke extremely hurtful words that upset me so much. Finally I told my husband I cannot stay with my MIL anymore and she moved to my BIL's house. I became completely estranged from my in-laws. Till today I have not spoken to them again. My husband speaks to them from office and I think they also try to maintain a distance.

    I have started marital counseling again. I spoke to my doctor and she diagnosed me with postpartum depression. She prescribed an anti-depressant for me but I had unpleasant side effects because of the medicine. She has not been able to prescribe any other medication because I have not weaned off my son.

    Everybody keeps telling me to forgive him and move on. My counselor asked me "what do you think needs to happen for the healing process to start? ". I told her that I don't know the answer myself. My husband has also apologized a zillion times but he hurt me so much during that period of life that I am not able to get over the past at all. During my anger I start cursing him and his family and later I regret my behavior a lot. We feel extremely unhappy that despite being blessed with such a wonderful son we are so unhappy. I am just unable to move on in life. I find it hard to concentrate at work and feel very depressed. Ladies has anybody gone through such a situation. Any ideas on how to start the healing process. We have tried taking vacations, meditation courses, marital counseling and anti depressants. The only thing we have not done so far is separate. Please help me out. I am really in need of some sensible advice.

    Thanks,
    Kavya.
     
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  2. SoaringSpirit

    SoaringSpirit Silver IL'ite

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    My dear Kavya,

    First all of, I understand EVERY SINGLE emotion you are undergoing. Some of it from personal experience and a lot if from helping a very close friend of mine through this phase. It was exactly like yours. I was amazed at the similarity when I read your email.

    Let me tell you the end result first so you know why you need to read the rest with great attention J

    The end result is that of emancipation from all negative feelings, a feeling that your anchor in life (your loving and trusted husband) is back, a person (YOU) who is self assured, loving, reasonable and confident in EVERY sphere of life and finally you will be able to enjoy life to its fullest. Believe me when I say this. I have walked through some of it myself and helped my friend get there too.

    Here is a bullet wise workout plan for your mind –

    • 1. Evaluate what you feel for your husband as of today. Write it down. When I say evaluate, I mean how do you feel about him in various aspects of your life - as a wife, as a working woman, as a mom, as a DIL, as a person (any other areas that come to your mind). How does he treat you in these areas and what kind of vibes do you get from him in each of these areas. It is important to separate these in areas since we play so many different roles in a day. Write down as much detail about your feelings as possible.
    • 2. Do the same evaluation prior to the birth of your baby when things were good.
    • Compare 1 and 2 and make a note of where things are positive and where they need improvement.
    3. Now evaluate based on the above, whether you still have faith in your husband and if you still love him. When I say faith and love, I mean the feeling that this person is surely worth giving a second chance. Write down the reasons why you think he is worth giving another chance. Unless you write down the reasons you will easily slip back to the blame game. These reasons will serve as the positives you see in him today. This is the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT step in the entire healing and making up process . I cannot emphasize the importance of this step enough. This is THE step that will help you forgive him and move on.
    4. Once you have the answer for step 3 now write down what changes you’d like to see in each of the areas listed in step 1. How would like for him to think about you in all those areas?
    Answer to step 4 are the “goals” that you will be working towards. You now need to device steps to get there.

    Devicing steps –
    • 1. If your answer to step 3 is yes (that your husband is worth giving a second chance) then you must start focusing on the goals IMMEDIATELY.
    • 2. Whenever doubts and frustrations about him not having supported you in your time of need come to your mind, revisit step 3 in the mind workout section. You have agreed to give him a second chance so immediately try to bring your mind to your goals.
    • One added advice here is that when you think about how your husband was not on your side, leave some concession for him not being a very mature individual in that regard or as someone who just could not put himself in your shoes at that time. All of us are like that in certain areas. We are not Gods and so we are not perfect. As long as you have faith in him being a person who has a good heart, you have to force yourself to cut him some slack in “not being supportive in time of need” area.
    • 3. Now take these goals as your personal challenge in life. Remember it is YOUR LIFE and YOU are responsible for making or breaking it. You want to be happy, lead a happy married life so you have to do what it takes to get there.
    • 4. Without getting the bitter memories of past in your mind, start enjoying his company. Even if he is taken aback by this sudden change in you and is a little cold in the beginning, you continue to do what you would ideally like to do with him if things were great. Live that good feeling. He is craving for it as much as you are.
    • 5. Start doing the things that made you happy in your good days – may be watching movies, cooking together, taking a walk, whatever you two enjoyed together.
    • 6. Once you are doing this on a regular basis, start talking to him one by one a few of the things that still trouble you about the past. Mind you one by one. And only a few. I would say 5 max. The rest you have to let go.
    • 7. When you bring out these things, plan how you are going to talk about it. What is going to be your opening sentence (this sentence usually makes him hear you or ignore you) and MOST IMPORTANTLY what is the end result you expect and what is the second best result you are willing to settle for. If it is just meant to vent out then really there is no point in talking to him about it. You are better off venting out to a friend or your mom. If the end result you want is that you want clear yourself of some blame that he holds you responsible for, then tell him just that and don’t force him to agree with it. Your desired goal was to tell him that you do not take the blame and that is done so stop there. When they see that you have given all this a good thought and have conviction in what you have said they DO think about it later and over time start seeing your point.
    • 8. If your desired goal for step 7, is for him to agree with you or see you in a certain light, you will have to give him time after you have told him what the problem is. Once you explain the issue you have with him and say that you’d like or expect this of him, let him be the one to do the talking. Listen to him without arguing or saying your point again. When he is finished talking tell him that you still think that he should change because of x,y,z reasons. That’s it. Leave it there. Make him feel like he has control too and that he is not being pressurized into changing something that he does not fully agree with. Time is the only healer here. And believe me, it does not take a very long time if you leave it there. If you bring it up again and again, the time counter keeps getting reset. So be very careful about this one.
    • 9. Once you have told him all your woes, behave positively and don’t let those woes surface in your interaction with him. You have sowed the seed (by speaking openly about your issues and your expectations from him) and the plant will be beautiful, without a doubt. Give this plant the nurturing and loving environment it needs to grow.

    I cannot tell you how much confidence I have in the fact that YOU WILL EMERGE A WINNER. When you come out of this phase, you will be such a wonderfully different person than what you were before. You will be very proud of yourself. I can assure you that. It will all seem worthwhile then.

    I could go on and on about this but I have to stop somewhere and that somewhere happens to be right here, right now!

    Wish you all the best from all my heart. I will be waiting to meet you at the other end of the road….

    SS
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2007
  3. kavya007

    kavya007 Gold IL'ite

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    Hi Soaringspirit,

    Thank you soo much for the wonderful email. I will definitely follow the advice that you have given. It is so wonderful to meet such good friends through IL. Your words of encouragement really mean a lot to me. I am also hoping that I will come out of this negativity very soon. I will implement the plan ASAP. Thanks once again for writting such a detailed plan.

    Kavya.


     
  4. chocolate

    chocolate Platinum IL'ite

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    Hello Kavya,I understand how you feel.First of all let me start by telling you have a very nice name and from your post you sound a smart and a very sweet woman.
    Although ,I dont have a kid yet,I have been in your position. I am married to my husband for 5 yrs. We dont live with our in laws. My husband has been b/n jobs and has mentally and physically abused me a lot. I have even taken legal action against him. After that he is okay and I would say our relationship has improved quite a bit. But I still cant forgive him for all the abuse. I was not the cause of his problems. Not even remotely.But I have helped him by supporting him when he was b/n jobs and money tight. The reward i got was loads of abuse. everybody keeps telling me I should forgive him . BUt I dont have such a big heart. After a point you just cant forgive them. how much ever good they are.Even i do the same,I curse my in laws and him .everybody in his house is an abuser. my in laws justify his behaviour. Now i dont have any relationship with them ,I am just polite when i visit them.
    Maybe going on a holiday once in a while helps. I do that with my husband even if its only 2- 3 days. It breaks the rut.Apart from that i feel change of place will help too. Good luck. Post back.
     
  5. kavya007

    kavya007 Gold IL'ite

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    Hello Chocolate,

    Thanks a lot for your support. Through some of your posts I have read about the hardship that you have gone through. It is really hard to put up with physical and emotional abuse. Many families treat their DIL's like door mats. What is your motivation for still sticking with your husband? Sometimes I feel it is better to separate instead of being stuck in a loveless relationship.

    My motivation for still sticking with my husband is
    1) The way my husband behaved after my delivery was an aberration in his personality that were caused by his medical problems. By nature he is a very kind and loving person. After he realized his mistakes he has begged me so many times for forgiveness. In fact recently he told me that he would like to have a 2nd child just to prove to me that he will take care of me like a princess after my delivery.
    2) He is a very good father and I don't want my son to grow up in a broken family.

    A piece of advice, don't bring a child into your marriage until you feel confident and secure in your relationship. My mom and dad did not have a very loving relationship and I grew up feeling very insecure. I had a poor opinion about the opposite sex until I met my husband. After my marriage, I used to think that my husband is god's gift to me to offset all the unhappiness and insecurity I had faced during my childhood. We recently faced some problems in life but I am sure that we will pass over this dark episode in our life.

    Kavya



     
  6. SoaringSpirit

    SoaringSpirit Silver IL'ite

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    Hi Kavya,

    No thanks are due to me, the pleasure was entirely mine.

    Just hang in there and plan and follow your strategy to overcome this phase. It will pass.

    I forgot to remind you again that you should DEFINITELY think about taking a meditation/yoga class. Our minds need some food for thought and the class provides that so prefectly. We are forced to take some time away for introspection. We need this time.

    I will be looking foward to hearing the great strides you are about to make in your personal life..

    SS
     
  7. malspie

    malspie Platinum IL'ite

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    Hi,

    I am single so my thoughts are different. If my spouse cheats on me, there is no second 'take' kids or no kids. And I am pretty sure of it. I cannot live with a man who has betrayed my trust. Sacrifice and all that is not my cuppa. He can keep the kids (if I know he has the ability to take care of them and the funds too), else I will walk away with the kids.

    When I watch Jaya Bachhan (wife of Amitabh Bachhan), I always question myself, how did she stick to him. He was in series of affairs be it Rekha or Parveen Babi... She stood by him and all that........... Today she is standing next to him receiving awards on his behalf, clapping for him, etc...

    I would have let go all the SHOW SHA and liked to start life of my own. For me self respect and dignity is more important than anything in life. Thats me... To each his own is what the proverb says... Correct.........
     
  8. jaishree9

    jaishree9 Silver IL'ite

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    Hi Kavya
    I think ur situation is result of two uncontrolled medical issues & so fault lies with no body.Ur husband loved u all those years & same with u ,giving child birth may be a stressful event more so in some than others & post partum blues are known phenomina ,similarly hyperthyroid state is one quite disabiliting medical problem & so ur husbands behavoiur was not very abberent without a cause.
    U shud think of the forgivness he is asking . And think to the core of the situation he was also worried abt the welfare of newborn baby So the behavoiur .
    With first born anxiety of parents may lead to many arguments & upsetting situations but that does not mean that u cant forgive him or he u .
    Love is all what requires to uit u all.,but u shud give a gap of atleast 2-3 years before thinking of another birth.
    Abt inlows plz think that as u love ur son they also love theirs & want to make his life good ,may be their views differ from urs but try to give them some consideration & regard . wishing u all best for speedy recovery.
     
  9. chocolate

    chocolate Platinum IL'ite

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    Thanks for the response. I am waiting for my GC to get thru. Not that I didnt work hard for it. That I would say is one motivation. Also I will be crossing 30 next year and the pressure is there on me to have a kid soon. More so because of my age.Although my husband has been trying to make our relationship better ,I would say I have become cold to his efforts. If i am motivated enough ,I may separate too.In a way i couldnt have asked for better setup. Although my husband doesnt defend me in front of his family ,he lets me defend myself . He wont say no if i give back my in laws.Also i dont live with them. Thats another motivation. lets see what happens.

    take care of yourself.
     
  10. SoaringSpirit

    SoaringSpirit Silver IL'ite

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    Hi Mals,

    Wonderful to see your reply. I haven’t really had the chance yet to go through most of your posts on this forum but the few that I have read tell me about your great writing abilities and your frankness in expressing your views.

    I agree with you 100% on the cheating part!

    I personally would not be able to tolerate philandering. But they say “never say never” so I always leave myself some room for the “what ifs”. Although I do not ever want to be posed with such a “what if’ in my life! To me trust and fidelity are THE most important pillars in a good relationship and especially in marriage. If one of those pillars is damaged the consequences should be severe. I agree that moving on may be the best course of action rather than suffering the humiliation. For me too it would pretty much mean a path of no return if my spouse were to cheat on me.

    Now if I try to understand the stance of ladies who do stay in the relationship, I think that somwhere they have found their peace. They have probably knowingly traded off one thing for getting another. Somewhere in their heart and mind they have made a “deal” that they will settle for A in lieu of giving up B. I cannot imagine any other way of leading a life long relationship with anyone, let alone your spouse. Somewhere these ladies have convinced themselves that their giving up on a certain issue has not gone waste and that they have got something else in return. That’s the only way I have been able to rationalize their stance.

    I agree though that for the majority of us cheating is similar to crossing the LOC, from where it is very difficult to return and that too on amicable terms..


    SS
     

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