zzar45 : I hear you. My own work and dreams I had set aside to support the money-making business, I have revived. On my own: this is not his. The unpaid work was to support his bill-paying business. (That’s separate from this other one we have together.)
And I guess I was emotional and in a really victim-reaction mindset when I wrote that: to be fair, I offered to help. I believed in his work, and I thought if he was going to be supporting us, helping was my way of contributing. He also did pay a few of the jobs. The work that was grueling I do resent, but I could have been stronger with my boundaries and simply said NO I am taking a break.
This dynamic might have been fine, if we had actually married – but I’m also looking at that and thinking I should not have offered the support if I felt it cost me so much, it couldn’t be given freely, without strings attached. In order for this dynamic to work, I would have had to learn to be strong and put my work FIRST, even though it wasn’t yet bringing in money. I needed to believe in me as much as I believed in him – and I didn’t.
But therapy is showing me this… he didn’t ask me to set aside my own work- I chose to put him first. It’s likely one of the reasons this ended! I lost myself, and my backbone. I expressed my unhappiness to him, but he would just smooth things over and wear a mask of “everything’s fine,” rather than work on things.
i tried to win him and his approval by working harder, being a better support. But we shouldn’t have to fight for things like that! The imbalance here was not good.
I have no desire to go back romantically to someone who hides things on such a scale that he surprises me with a breakup, instead of saying “let’s to go therapy,” or sitting down and having a talk about what’s concerning him. That is NOT husband material.
I’m seeing lately in other threads that this kind of shock could (and likely would) happen later, after years of marriage. I’m seeing that marriage is no guarantee of emotional fidelity or partnership. It was naive of me to think that once someone had taken vows, they’d be committed to working on things. If he was engaged and couldn’t communicate what was going on with him, that is enough of a deal-breaker for me.
Therapy has made this break very clear. For anyone who might stumble on this thread later : weekly appointments with a good therapist can help the inner transformation along much more rapidly than I would have been able to effect alone. (Also, the “mend” app, which has daily check-ins and guided lessons is so helpful!)
There’s something that happens when you begin to take your power back, and realize that you have always been capable of more than you thought. I could have made my work and dreams happen without his help. I didn’t need to cower in his shadow.
There is no possibility of building any kind of marriage or relationship on an old foundation which required me to shrink and resort to people-pleasing behaviors. I was walking on eggshells in order to try to feel safe in an environment in which I could sense that something was wrong, but it was not communicated, and when I’d ask, he’d pretend things were fine.
No, there is no hanging on here, or longing for what I thought I had. There was so much sweetness in our connection and friendship, and certainly artisitically we are a powerful team- but the woman who I was in that partnership (even the woman I was when I wrote this initial post!) is being shed fairly rapidly. There’s no going back to that – and it would be deeply painful to attempt it.
A lot of this relationship was true and good, and so I’m taking those things with me – and this relationship breakup had me go in desperation to seek therapy I am coming to find out I really needed. So there’s some good that came out of this, and I’m just focusing on that and moving on.
Whew! Long post … I guess I have a lot to say on the subject of achieving true detachment without full no-contact xD