Newlywed – is this normal 1st year hell or should I get divorced ASAP?

posted 2 months ago in Relationships
  • poll: What should I do?

    Go back to my country ASAP where I have support

    Keep hoping something changes and wait til he is back next year to try to work on it

    Any other ideas!

  • Post # 31
    Member
    1039 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: October 2019

    I view the situation as a communications issue. Sorry to the PP’s that hated my advice. If I had seen this as an abusive situation I would have not suggested changing the dynamic by changing how Op interacts with him. She can change their communication dynamic. Compliments can create a safe place for people who are on the defensive to feel valued and appreciated and able to talk and open up. Only Op knows her situation and if that is something that could diffuse the situation.

    Season 9 of Married at first sight is on Netflix, this reminds me a little of Beth and Jamie. You both cannot communicate and are taking what the other says the wrong way.

    To me, it seems both of you are on edge, you allow your insecurity to make you question everything which puts him on the defensive. You can’t let anything he does go and push and push until he gives you a reason.

    Maybe there was no reason in the car, maybe he just made a sound and gesture and can’t tell you why cause there was no conscious thought behind it. And then you pushed him on it and cried and it was something he didn’t realize he even did. You were assuming he did it deliberately because he found you annoying. But all indicators are that he doesn’t find you annoying or he wouldn’t have married you and has never had a problem with you aimlessly chattering in the car before.

    “something during an important discussion that he had said literally minutes earlier. Again, nothing would make him admit it.” Again here you are pressing him and nothing would make him admit he said what he said. Instead of making him admit that he said something how about, “What did you mean by (blank).” Sometimes with H, I say something and he takes it a certain way, and maybe I did say it that way but how it came out was not my intended meaning. To me saying, “you said XYZ, admit that you said it,” gets us nowhere in the conversation. “What did you mean by (blank) “can move the conversation forward.

    He got upset that he perceived you were upset and annoyed at him when he had to get off the phone. Again non-issue. “Babe, I’m not upset I understand you have to go, I just enjoy talking to you.”

    “I told you I’m not coming home tonight, I have an exercise (military)’.  He plans these exercises so he will have known about it for at least a week. He did not tell me, I have a good memory. He knew he had not told me. I didn’t text back that evening because it’s all been so much and it’s just getting exhausting. He wouldn’t admit, that he knew the entire time he had lied, until 4 days later.” The whole situation could have been avoided with a simple, “Weird, I had no idea. Maybe we should get a wall calendar and write them on it. Have a good night.”

    It just seems like the two of you are caught in an unhealthy communication cycle. For some reason, he didn’t feel like he could say, “oh shit sorry babe, I forgot to tell you I have an exercise tonight.” Would you have let that go? Or would you have launched into why he didn’t tell you and how he could have forgotten and what him forgetting meant?

    The things he is saying, “you have no evidence I…’.. ‘I took your shit for ages now I am sticking up for myself’, you are emotionally manipulative, you just always want to win” To me, these reactions say he feels attacked and is on the defensive. The two of you need to learn how to communicate where neither of you feels attacked. There are no winners in arguments. Getting him to admit things shouldn’t be the goal, communicating effectively should be.

    The entire relationship sounds exhausting. You either have to figure out how to speak the same language and learn to communicate effectively or move on. I would see a couple’s therapist who can teach you to speak the same language in your communication.

    Post # 32
    Member
    1472 posts
    Bumble bee

    With love and respect, your biggest problem seems to be is your husband is tired of being your emotional caretaker.  And is now refusing to continue to take on the job of having to be your constant source of making you feel ok and reassured.

    What you describe in your OP of your past (abusive relationships) and how your relationship with your husband started, shows you began qualifying potential men by seeing how well they “loved” you.  And the way you gathered proof of their qualifications of being your emotional caretaker is that you put him through a “vigorous test” where you let it all “hang” warts and all.  And you made the decision to be with your husband because he didn’t seem get scared away by your “test” and “…. .  I was amazed at how kind he was towards and that after showing him my real person rather than ‘the fun, easygoing woman’ I thought most wanted and how well he handled the ups and downs during our relationship.   

    You are looking for someone to love you and give to you in the ways you won’t give to yourself.  The only way you can really determine whether or not a man you meet can give you what you want in love is to learn to love and give to yourself everything you want from him.  Without first learning how to love and fulfill your own needs, there’s no way for you to know if he truly can while you’re dating.  

    You’ll be playing russian roulette with your heart.  And making guys go through “tests” (no matter how “vigorous”) will NEVER reveal the truth of who they really are as a person and whether or not they can meet your needs.  The only way for you to know this is when you know how to truly genuinely love yourself, then you’ll just KNOW when you finally meet someone emanating the same unconditional love back to you.

    I’m sorry that you are hurting so much and are in a painful place in your relationship.  I know this sounds counter-intuitive but the best advice I can give you is during this time of isolation (think you said your husband was away) put all of your focus on YOURSELF.  Focus 100% of your energy and attention on engaging in activities and things that make you feel good, happy, joyful, anything that makes you passionate.  From my experience, when you’re in such a painful difficult place in your marriage, if you take a break from the “issues” and focus on doing things that make you happy (taking a soothing bath, petting your cat/dog, treating yourself to a massage, reading your fav book, talking to a good positive friend, etc) and loving yourself, it will help you get clarity about your husband and the marriage.  You’ll be in a better place than feeling so lost and scared on what to do.

    Post # 34
    Member
    177 posts
    Blushing bee

    Reading your post made me so nervous for you! It is clear something traumatic has happened to him whilst serving, he is emotionally abusive and could turn into physical abuse. When you said about the hand and grunt in the car, it almost sounded like he wanted to choke you. If you feel in your gut and heart of hearts that he has the possibility of being abusive, then make a quick decision now while he is gone and leave and never look back! Good luck 

    Post # 35
    Member
    13365 posts
    Honey Beekeeper

    View original reply
    @Stephanie31:  You may not be sure, but I am. Pushing a door against someone’s body or hand intentionally is a form of physical abuse, with good potential to hurt you whether that’s the end result or not. 

    Post # 37
    Member
    1039 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: October 2019

    View original reply
    @Stephanie31:  I don’t think strangers on the internet can help you with this. You need a good couples counselor that can help you. He may be more willing to open up to you when a therapist is facilitating than just you. As internet strangers, none of us can be sure what is going on. Your communication obviously isn’t working and the two of you can’t continue down this path.

    Do you love this man and want to see if this can be fixed? Or are you fine saying next and moving on?

    Post # 38
    Member
    68 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

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    @Stephanie31:  
    View original reply
    @Stephanie31:  I 100% disagree with the very first comment given to you, OP. I think your #1 is actually very strange behavior, and if my husband did that to me, I would want an explanation too. LIke you said, it’s not so much the fact that he did it, as it is that he completely denied that it happened at all. That is bizarre. To me, your SO sounds like he lies quite a bit… to you and about you. And it sounds like these instances have been escalating over the years. I can’t tell you what to do, but I can tell you what I would do, and I would absolutely leave. The fact that he denies any wrong doing ever, and blames you for his own behavioral issues, is a huge problem. Whether or not he is aware of what he is doing, that is completely abusive behavior. He sounds very immature and unable to talk things out like an adult. I really hope the best for you. 

    ETA: OP, after reading this comment of yours: “I’ve never seen him be violent and I’m not too worried about that as it would affect his career so I don’t think he would “

    i wanted to edit to add: my husband is also in the military, and I can’t tell you how many wives we have found out were being abused after the fact. A couple we would have never known about if they hadn’t ended in death. Please do not assume he will not turn violent just because it could affect his career. This line of thinking is what gets people killed. I completely agree that you should leave when he is not there, and do not give any indication ahead of time. His continual gaslighting and denial of his own behavior and words is a huge precursor to physically abusive behavior. Please be safe and keep us posted. 

    Post # 39
    Member
    433 posts
    Helper bee

    To all the previous posters blaming the OP for ‘making too much of things’ – as I read it, her concern is not that he has said or done these things, but that he has denied saying or doing them at all when she has tried to put things right after the event.  That is a very different issue.  Just take a look at these items from the original post:

    1) “…he made some very aggressive hand gestures and a loud ‘arrrgh’ I asked ‘why did you do that?’.  To which he replied ‘I didn’t do anything’. OP then says “pretending nothing happened, really freaked me out.”  Now if her husband had said ‘I just lost my temper with that driver’ or ‘I was stressed driving and your talk was distracting me’, that would be one thing – getting snappy under pressure is something that happens to most people.  But the concern is that he denied ever having done this.

    2) “He had denied he had said something during an important discussion that he had said literally minutes earlier.” 

    3) “He wouldn’t admit, that he knew the entire time he had lied, until 4 days later, after he had called me crazy, slammed doors (a new thing he has started doing), said horrific things about me like ‘you are emotionally manipulative, you just always want to win’ etc.”  So this guy knows he has lied to his new wife, but rather than just say sorry, he calls her crazy and manipulative and uses threatening gestures (slamming doors) around her to try to get her to drop the subject.  Only when she doesn’t back down does he admit that he lied.

    4) I also found out from my Mother-In-Law he had told her … I was ‘unstable’… but in reality, he left his exercise because I told him ‘no it is not growing on me I don’t want to be engaged’  

    OP, I would be deeply concerned about all this too – doing something wrong like forgetting to tell someone you will be late back or losing your temper with them is one thing – denying that you have said and done things that you have just said and done is something more.  Not to mention trying to get other people to believe you are mentally unstable.  You mentioned that you’d experienced gaslighting in a previous relationship – I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that what you are experiencing now is gaslighting.

    Obviously, none of us can know exactly what is going on here.  But the fact that you have been so open with him about your past suggests the possibility that he may have seen you as an easy victim.  “I was 100% myself warts and all …I was amazed at how kind he was. .. I never got an answer to any of this and he refused to talk about why these outbursts were happening. Then we got married.”  Dear girl, it’s late to tell you this now, but you should not have married him before these issues were resolved.  I wonder if you were just so grateful to have found someone who would ‘accept’ you that you closed your mind to the warning signs.  From his end, it could be that he was ‘testing the water’ to see how you would react to unreasonable behaviour.  When you went ahead with the marriage in spite of his behaviour, it could have suggested to him that you would be an easy gaslighting victim. 

    The alternative is that he is suffering from some kind of PTSD due to his military background.  

    I would advise that you seek some counselling or support from someone who has experience in dealing with this kind of background.  Something needs to change and change FAST in this relationship if it is to survive.  If he is not able or willing to change, then you cannot continue like this.

    Whether your marriage survives or not, please work on your own healing.  Kindness from a marriage partner should be something wonderful, special, valued, appreciated…but it should never be regarded as ‘amazing’.  You need to be able to view yourself as you are – as a precious, unique human being and the equal of those around you, not as some kind of lower being to whom it is ‘amazing’ if anyone shows kindness.  You deserve so much more than this x  

     

     

    Post # 40
    Member
    2477 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

    View original reply
    @Stephanie31:  I reread your entire post again and clarifications just to make sure I wasn’t missing anything. An aggressive hand gesture in the car sounds like one step before actually slapping you. Slamming a door on you when he knew you were there…(physical abuse). Telling his mother lies about you (alienation) and then denying everything (gaslighting). All of these are very concerning. Have you reached out to anybody yet – family, friend, professional? I’m still afraid for your safety.

    Post # 41
    Member
    382 posts
    Helper bee

    View original reply
    @Stephanie31:  Honestly, he sounds disturbed. Get out of there.

    Post # 42
    Member
    588 posts
    Busy bee

    the first year of marriage should not be “hell”– i’ve never heard that!  there can be some growing pains getting used to life as a couple vs. life as an individual, but this goes way beyond that.  

    Post # 43
    Member
    2722 posts
    Sugar bee

    He sounds abusive and you need to safely extricate yourself from this situation asap.

    Also, the first year of marriage should NOT be hell. Maybe there will be adjustments if you never lived together before or if life events come up that bring things to a head or cause tension. But your relationship shouldn’t fundamentally change. This is in no way normal. 

    Post # 44
    Member
    1791 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: October 2019

    My entire relationship with my husband so far has been wonderful. The 2 years we dated before getting married were great. We don’t fight at all and never had a single moment where either of us even considered breaking up. It was smooth sailing all along. It’s what my mom always told me to find in a partner, an easy love. Where the compatibility level is so high that it’s just easy to be together. We are 8 months into our first year of marriage and it’s exactly the same as when we dated, all smooth sailing. I have no idea why the first year would be hell at all. I don’t think there is any reason for that to even be a thing. 

    OP it is very hard to know what the issue is here with only getting it from your perspective and although your responses on here are long, the actual detail is lacking. I suggest you join that military wives group someone suggested, meet with your therapist and discuss your concerns with them to see if they can help you figure out what is going on and how bad it really is. 

    Aside from that with what you have given us I would say this. You said you weren’t ready to be engaged and married to him for a while. That to me sounds like your gut was telling you he wasn’t the one for you but you married him anyways. Bottom line is, if you aren’t happy you should leave. 

    Post # 45
    Member
    2536 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

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    @Stephanie31:  I agree with 
    View original reply
    @mrsssb:  (no surprise there!). My first year of marriage was bliss. The second and third (we’ll make 3 years married in October) have also been smooth sailing and wonderful. We don’t agree on everything and have had to have some in law discussions, but never would I refer to our relationship as anything remotely resembling hell. We have a smooth, easy going relationship, because we’re compatible and a good fit. I know several couples who refer to the first year of their marriage as “difficult,” “hell,” and some other phrases meaning the same, and they still struggle now. Not saying that everyone who has a bad first year shouldn’t be together, but from my experience, everyone I know who did are still struggling, even if it’s been years since then. 

    The gaslighting just isn’t okay. It would drive me crazy, but more importantly, it erodes your trust in your relationship, your partner, others’ view of you (due to the lies he tells about you), and in extreme cases, your ability to trust yourself and your own instincts. 

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