"You say you believe in marriage for life. I respect that. Can I ask if thatís a religious belief, a belief that stems from experiencing painful divorce, or somewhere else? I think in many ways your answer to that question will help frame your understanding of a bigger question - why are you putting up with abuse for so long?
A cultural belief more than anything else. I believe one of the major influences of society is the family. I feel strongly that having a family environment is essential for kids. I also believe strongly in commitment. I believe all relationships will have really high highs and really low levels, and hopefully a lot of evenness in between. I have made a commitment to my wife and my family and I will do everything that is in my power to keep that commitment. I think people change over a life time, sometimes good, sometimes bad. People have bad days, months, years. The thought though is that those phases. I made a commitment to never give up on her. Time will only tell if I can or even should keep that commitment.
Yes. Abuse. From what you describe you are the victim of abuse from your wife. That doesnít make you weak. Abuse screws with the mind and soul.
And, abuse aside, just the affairS- multiple... well, for every one of, and letís of, her affairs that youíve discovered Iíd wager a significant chunk of change that there are more you havenít discovered.
I truly fear this as well.
What should you do, you ask. Around here one of the guidelines is generally not to give advice. Youíll be supported in this community no matter if you stay or go or work on it or not.
You mentioned counselling or divorce as an ultimatums. You mentioned she said Ok to counselling.
I worry that this ultimatum might see her and you going through the motions. She sounds pretty good at manipulating, lying and hiding the truth. In my situation, my loved one with alcoholism has been going through treatment and ďrelapsingĒ (read: never getting better) over and over: Iíve learned that alcoholics need to want treatment and anything that even seems like pressure- let alone this ultimatum type pressure, which actually IS pressure- often just leads to more lies and manipulation rather than fresh starts and healing.
But that doesnít mean *you* shouldnít get counselling. This might help you untangle the effects of abuse so you can be more centred in your decision making. If youíve never been to counselling before and want some info what itís like there are lots of us here who can share parts of our experience. Itís not a bad thing at all.
I am starting to think that me getting counseling is a potential path. I have been against it for, well, since ever.
You sound intelligent, self aware, compassionate and kind. Your kids are lucky to have that influence.
As someone else said in a different thread and now Iím plagiarizing... sorry you had to find us, happy that you are here."
Thank you for sharing this and for the advice