There just seems to be a few questions on hard marriages recently – and while i am no marriage expert by far – I have been in the hard place.
The ‘i want out’. The feeling this is going no-where – and so i wanted to share my story.
Firstly though – no judging. Promise? From me or you! That’s not what this is about. I have friends who have been through divorce / separation / adultery – who are STILL friends.
And great ones at that! What path you choose will not affect me and the way i treat you. So please don’t assume i am ‘having a go’ at anyone. Please?
Ok – with that out of the way….
My heart aches when i read of the questions concerning hard marriages and husbands not fulfilling their roles. I guess because i have also been there.
This July, my husband and i are celebrating 10years of marriage. And, as the joke goes, “It has been the best 5 years of my life!” J
In all seriousness though, our 10 years has not always been a pretty picture. Without going into too much detail in sharing our private life so publically (come on – first post here!! J) my husband and i were both carrying much more baggage then either of us really knew on the day we said ‘I do’ together. And eventually, the bags need to be unpacked.
I still remember vividly, being heavily pregnant and screaming up and down my hallway, wanting out of this marriage. I was done. Over. It was finished in my eyes. Lies, trust issues… really hard times. Where the kids and i were going to live and how we were going to survive without their dad filled my thoughts.
Physically, i just took it out on my hair! When i look back on the photos of me now, in my ‘short hair’ phase, the memories of those difficult times come flooding back in.
“I just felt like a change” i would casually tell others – while in reality, my mind races back to the moment i sat in front of the mirror, crying and cutting and chopping away. I ‘did a Britney’ as one of my beautiful friends said recently. Ha ha! So true!
I felt so alone. I felt like i couldn’t talk to anyone, mainly because everyone else seemed to be doing fine in their marriages (A bit like motherhood sometimes huh?) It seemed like i was the only one with issues. As a ‘Christian Marriage’ we aren’t meant to have problems right?!? No one else seemed to be! We should have it all together. We don’t. We are all human and have faults too.
Anyways, in true rambling Kelly style.. I will try to sum it up…
I mainly just wanted to share how much my heart aches for those in difficult marriages at the moment. It’s not nice. Not the ‘walk in the park’ i expected it to be in those early years – but with both of us having so much undealt with baggage, it really was ignorant of me to think it was going to be!
This is a union of two completely different people – working together as one. IT IS HARD WORK!! You can only fake it for so long, before those bags need to be unpacked.
On the other side of the mud, I can testify that sticking in there is worth it. Great things are worth working for. And the trust and faith my husband and i have now is worth so much to me. He is my rock. Yes, still human and i allow for that, but I love him more each day. Truly.
I often have people comment on what a great husband / father i have found myself. I get it a lot! And he really is (i love you babe!) but the words “You’re soooo lucky” makes me laugh on the inside. I promise you he wasn’t born this way! Ask him yourself!!
And i too, know that i’m not perfect either. No one here is! I am ‘The Imperfect Mum 2’ but you may as well add ‘Imperfect Wife’ to my resume too! Ha ha!
But i know, regardless of our circumstances, the difficulties life throws at us, the mountains we must climb and blow up, the way he treats me, the emotional rollercoaster of life we are on – i made a promise 10 years ago – for better or worse, richer or poorer, sickness and in health – and I am NOT giving up. Ever. ‘till death do us part.
So – some tips i hope will help those who are trudging through mud at the moment…
- Stop iffing! It does not help! IF only he would do this or that…. IF only i had married that other guy…. IF only we had more money…. It’s time to face facts. This type of thinking doesn’t help. The grass is usually greener where you water it. You signed the contract. You promised to love him when things get ugly. Look at this as a challenge. The mountain to climb. Stop wasting precious time fantasising and start watering your own grass. Pull out the weeds. One bit at a time. Don’t give up and get new grass! Hang in there!
- 80/20 – Something i’m still learning and trying to remember. I tend to focus on the 20% husband DOESN’T do instead of the 80% that he does and thank him for that. You always find what you are looking for, so try to look for the good in him. Tell him how much you appreciate it. You know it’s in there. Go back to early photos and memories if you have to. Find him. You married him for a reason.
- Communicate. Argh! The dreaded ‘C’ word!! I know, most guys hate it! But before the problem gets too big to swallow, cut the problem up into bite sized pieces. Tackle one thing at a time. What is the best way to eat a cow? One small bite at a time. It’s not helpful pretending it’s not there. I find writing to my husband is the best way to get things out in the light. He has time to read and think things through, and i have time to process exactly how i feel without it turning into a fireworks display! Choose your words carefully. Small bites. Don’t hit him with the whole cow in one go! Re-read your words from his perspective.
- Pray. When you are empty, pray. When you have nothing left to give, pray. When the whole world is on your shoulders, pray. When you are so deep in the pit you can’t see your way out…. pray. I PROMISE you God is there. And He wants your marriage to work, probably more than you do! Pray for your husband. Pray for your kids. Pray for yourself. Pray for patience. Wisdom. Help to see his 80%! Cry. Yell. Be silent. Write. Tell God. He knows anyway….
I hope this has helped someone, somehow in some way.
You are not alone in this. You are not the first who has walked this road.