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u/LaTuFu · 6 pointsr/Divorce

Whew this got wordy in a hurry. Sorry for the wall of text.

Look at it this way: Both of you did things to each other that were very harmful for your marriage.

I am not excusing what she did, because stepping outside the marriage, even during a period of separation, is not a good idea. the same time, having anger issues and taking them out on the mother of your children is a pretty serious betrayal of trust, too.

You're both carrying baggage right now, and both of you are hurt by what has taken place in the marriage. Now what?

If you want to heal this marriage, you definitely can. It is going to take:

  • A lot of humility. Humility is being able to admit that you screwed up, even in the middle of an argument with your wife, even when your pride is telling you that she's wrong, too, and she needs to be the one to apologize first.

  • A lot of grace. Grace is realizing that she's made mistakes, and will continue to make mistakes as you try to repair your marriage. Grace is being able to recognize that neither of you are perfect, and it took you however long you've been together (dating and married) to get here, it will take longer than a few months to rebuild trust, and learn new ways of communicating with each other that are healthy.

  • A lot of forgiveness. You're going to have to learn that forgiveness is a process, it is a journey, not a one time thing. You're going to have to learn that you will forgive your wife for something today, 5 months (or even 5 years) will go by and suddenly something will trigger you and you have to go back to this place and start all over with the forgiveness. And you have to learn to forgive yourself, in the same way, for all of the things you did to your wife.

  • A lot of work. You both built this marriage into what it is today. It took a while to get here. It will take a little longer to get to a new place. Both of you will need to focus on the process, not the immediate results. There will be good days and bad days as you rebuild. Chances are very good that the two of you brought a lot of baggage into your marriage from your childhood. Sometimes you can work through that together. Sometimes you need the help of a third party professional to sort through some of that stuff.

  • A lot of communication. In my experience, most married couples today lack the fundamental basics of healthy communication skills. It is probably the leading cause of marriage dissatisfaction in this country. Our society does a horrible job of encouraging healthy, honest communication in relationships. Books like Love and Respect and The 5 Love Languages can help you learn to work on those aspects of your relationship. It can also help you realize that your marriage is a living, breathing entity all to itself, and it requires the same kind of investment, time, and nurturing that your children do if it is going to be successful.

  • A lot of community. Many people on Reddit cringe when they read stuff like this, but I have lived my life both ways, and I can attest to how much better it is this way. You need people in your life who you can go to and talk about your marriage in a healthy way. Not "my wife is a raging bitch, I need to figure out how to change her" gripe sessions, but rather "I am really struggling with how to change the way I react when she doesn't like something I said. I always get defensive and lash out. WTF am I doing wrong?" If you don't have a friend who can look you in the eye and give you an honest, helpful answer to that question, without judging you (or worse, telling the rest of your friends about it) then you don't have community. Living out your life and your marriage in isolation is another reason why so many marriages fail. We can't do this alone. You need 2-4 couples who are in the same season of life as you are (kids near the same age, you guys reasonably close in age. Older couples who are grandparents can be AMAZING resources, but they can't be your only inner circle.) Where to find these people? I would suggest checking out a local church. Visit a few churches in your area for a while before settling on one. Look around while you're there. Is it mostly older people? Do they do the ritual, stand up, sing a hymn, sit down, listen to the preacher, stand up, sing a hymn, walk out and go home without sticking around routine? Probably not a great place. Do you see a lot of younger faces close to your age? Do they have kids near your age? Do they linger in the common area after the service and talk to each other? You might have a finalist for your home church. If you're atheist/agnostic/not sure right now--forget about the faith aspect for a little bit. Trust me when I say, 90% of the beef most Americans have about organized religion has to do with the people running those organizations and their completely warped interpretation of scripture. If you find the right church, you'll realize you have found the churches that get it right. At the very least, it is something to consider. I've seen more marriages saved through solid, loving church communities than I have through all the "family counselors" in my area combined. And some of the strongest marriages I have seen rebuilt have come from the ashes of an infidelity situation.

  • A lot of leadership. One thing I have realized in the last couple of years, our society and our media have done an amazing job of emasculating men and conditioning us to believe that we're chauvinist pigs if we try to be the leaders of our families. The reality can't be further from the truth. Look at all of our society's biggest ills, and you'll see many of them associated with the tag line "they didn't have a strong father figure in their life." The success stories of Kevin Durant and other athletes who overcame single parent backgrounds are the outliers. We're conditioned to believe that if we lead, we're being dominant and harsh. Good fathers and family leaders are never authoritarian assholes. They make sure that everyone in their family, starting with their wives, has the support they need to become the people they're meant to be. We're not absolute dictators. We're counselors, coaches, negotiators, lovers, shepherds...whatever it takes in that moment. And if we're doing it right, our spouse feels loved, respected, honored, and valued in their own right as a person and as a mate/equal partner in their marriage. And your kids see a man who is the model of what a father and husband is supposed to look like. They'll want to find a man like that in their life later on. Wouldn't you rather they got married to a guy like that? Or would you want them to marry the guy you were when you had anger issues? If nothing else, remember that it's not just you and your wife that are affected by all of this. Your kids are in the middle of all of this, and they don't get a vote in the outcome. They just get to suck up all of the consequences, for good or ill. Trust me, the majority of those consequences are ill. Put their needs before yours right now, if your pride is getting in the way of letting you try to work out your marriage. Your kids will thank you for your humility and your sacrifice later on in your life.

    TL;DR: You're not wrong for feeling hurt and resentful. But don't let that hold you back from making the right decision to fight for your family and your marriage.
u/M4ver1k · 1 pointr/Divorce

I'm late to the party, but I really want to offer my $.02. I get the feeling like you are my wife in this scenario, and I'm in the position of your current wife. Don't string her along. If you can be open and willing to fix it, then you will fix it. If she's desperate to try anything then you don't have to worry about effort on her part, she just needs guidance. You have to be willing to put forth the effort. I'd believe that as long as you are truly open and willing to put forth that effort on your side then it can succeed, and you can start living your life -- with her.

I say this, as a man who has been broke down, shown very little love, and had no guidance. I've asked family, friends, coworkers, and the internet for advice. I've read books and articles. For 3 months I gave up all my hobbies, I gave up all my friends, and I put my 100% into trying to save my marriage because she said she'd give me the opportunity to see what I can do. But she never put effort in on her side, and without HER GUIDANCE I was essentially setting myself up for failure for months. I realized that there was nothing more I can actually do if she isn't willing to even try, which includes giving me guidance to do what she needs. So last Thursday I brought it up in a conversation and she decided that it was best to just end it still, again no help from her side. Don't pity me, this is not a cry for attention. I just want to point out that if you're not going to put in effort on your side, spare her from wasting her time effort and energy. If you want to put forth a legitimate effort on your side into seeing if it's salvageable and start living your life with her (emphasis on living, because it is possible even from a shitty situation), you need to work with her.

If you're going to try, I have recommendations that I suggest the both of you begin with. Read this book. Despite my marriage failing, it has shown me concepts that I intend to follow my whole life. So for that matter, I'd recommend reading it even if you do intend to divorce.

After you read that book, reinforce it with this one. I found that on it's own it's not quite as helpful, but as reinforcement to the first book it just encourages a positive relationship.

Best of luck to you regardless, let me know if you have any questions about what I've done and how I've handled whatever.

u/need_CF_advice · 1 pointr/Divorce

Nothing is wrong with you. It's good that you checked out the 5 love languages. Great place to start. But here's the thing...

It's one thing to have, and acknowledge that you have, different love languages. That's fine. Not everyone understands the need to hear verbal affirmations of love, for example. But the true test of whether he's a good partner is whether he's able to step up to the plate and work with you on that difference. If he knows you need to hear "I love you," and refuses to say it, he's a selfish jerk.

You already know that being with him is causing you pain. He's causing your life to be worse, rather than better. Sure, you probably have your good times, it's rarely "all bad." But overall, his inability to address your concerns, care about and meet your needs, and meet in the middle to make sure you both feel fulfilled in your relationship have ultimately made you miserable.

Step 1: Read this book: How to Break your Addiction to a Person: When - and Why - Love Doesn't Work

Step 2: Get into therapy. STAY SINGLE during this time. If you keep choosing emotionally unavailable men, you need to figure out why so you can break that pattern.

Step 3: After therapy (could be 6 months, could be years, and that's ok, because it's worth it), you have the potential to emerge a happy, functional, healthy, whole person, who relies on herself for happiness. A self-fulfilling, functional person is the only person who can find true happiness in partnership.

It's not easy. The easy route would be staying complacent, remaining in an unfulfilling marriage that makes you miserable. Is that what you envisioned for your life? Of course it's not. But you have the power to change it.

Good luck to you <3

u/divorcein2013 · 2 pointsr/Divorce

I am in a very similar situation at the moment. We started out in mediation and I believed it was for the kids benefit that I do the every other weekend routine (or, if I decided to take her generous offer, every weekend).

Once I asked for 50% parenting time she completely flipped. I have had several emails where she accuses me of being a danger to the children and recently she threatened to try and take out a restraining order after I drove off when she started to yell at me and charge up to my car to continue to yell at me.

I have several examples of her poor and contradictory behavior in email, and my lawyer has the same information now too. She has reported that she doesn't have enough money to run the A/C in the house, but that same weekend she got a matching tattoo with her boyfriend. She has even gone as far to contact my new girlfriend behind my back to arrange a meeting "for the kids". I am happy that my girlfriend is a licensed therapist and can not only see through her manipulation, but can also help me remain calm and vet my emails so that they follow the BIFF statement detailed in another comment here.

I live in a single party notification state, so I keep audio recordings of each and every verbal conversation so she can't misrepresent the situation after the fact.

In order to keep yourself balanced, make sure you surround yourself with good friends and talk to them. Seeing a therapist is also a good step and will be a positive item to the court. As she loses control over you and you quit reacting to her she will become more angry and more manipulative. Be careful as she will use others against you. Emails which are quite benign that I have sent have been answered with 2 page long invective's that repeat how I am a poor father and that I am snide, condescending and that I am constantly angry.

I recently picked up the following book from the library:
Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder

I have yet to finish it, but it has good information on how you should act, how to help yourself and your lawyer. You will be insulted in court, she will try to make you look like a poor father. The best defense it to know you are a good father and that you can show you are taking the high road.

I'm sorry you have to go through this, it is tough to have someone you thought had your best interests in mind to turn around and attack you with the intimate knowledge of your life. But this is really about protecting yourself and being the best you can be for your children.

I wish you luck.

u/robotsongs · 3 pointsr/Divorce

Oof, it's hard, isn't it?

We had 16 great years together, but now she wants to spread her love all over town and I'm not going along with it. She told me recently that she made a mistake in saying "yes" long ago. Not when we got married, but three years before that when we were dating, trying an open relationship, and I gave her an ultimatum of "Micah or me-- your pick." She now says the last 13 years were a mistake. It's shattered me.

I have found A LOT of strength in Susan Anderson's The Journey from Abandonment to Healing. I'm not all the way through the book, but so far it's been immense. You gotta do the exercises, they're soooo helpful. And the theory of the book, ekeru, is, to me, incredibly beautiful, inspiring, and gives me strength.

I doubt you're no longer cute. You just gotta work on loving yourself and finding that cute that's already inside you. If you have a problem with what's on the outside, then when you find the inside cute, I have a feeling the outside will follow along.

Love yourself. Work on yourself. Reclaim your self. That's the hardest part (and I'm right there with you), and when you can finally sit in a room by yourself and be perfectly content, you'll know you did the work and you're stronger than you were even 16 years ago.

Go you, homie.

u/SegoviaPia · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Congratulations on the beginning of the rest of your life! Your wife sounds like a NARCISSIST! I know I was with one for 22 years only realized it after he left. You are not at fault nor are you crazy, narcissists are master manipulators. Im happy you did not take your own life, she is not worth it.


Here are some resources that have immensely helped me get through my divorce sanely and without hurting anyone nor myself:

Check out the criteria for a person to be considering as suffering from Narcissistic Personality Disorder or NPD:

To be classified as suffering from NPD the person must meet 5 of the 9 criteria, I have included some links below:

-[Mayo Clinic] (

Mayo clinic has a nice concise description


[From Halcyon] (

They provide detailed information

-[American Psychiatric Association] (

This one take a bit more searching thru.


If this is your situation consider reading:
["The Wizard of Oz and Other Narcissists" by Eleanor Payson] (
This has helped me immensely navigating through my divorce from an NPD and understanding my life with him.



Go walking, easiest form of exercise and great to help you think and clear your brain. I started walking on my doctors orders and it was the best advice. I also heard from a psychologist that exercise is an antidepressant.

Post on this sub-reddit, just like you did. It has helped me get through the most difficult days.


I highly recommend finding a therapist who specializes in [EMDR therapy] (
EMDR therapy has helped me immensely, it is amazing I would go in broken in with in 24 - 48 hrs I was so much better. I can't say enough good things about it.



Even if you are going to go through mediation lawyer up. If you do not have enough to hire a lawyer outright see if you can hire one to guide you through the process. Even if you go through mediation it is recommended that you have a professional to provide guidance through the ever changing legal landscape.


Best of luck.

u/Rick_Perrys_Asshole · -7 pointsr/Divorce

>It sounds like you did this and are projecting on to me. I am not your wife, so please don’t assume you know the dynamics of relationship with my soon to be ex.

I am not projecting anything. I am simply giving you a different POV of how you stated things. I thought I was pretty clear in my response

>Take a step back and do some self analysis. I know nothing of your STBX and I also know nothing of you, but the way you talk ... sheds some light

>Where does all your money go? If you are working in your business and not earning money, that is a hobby, not a job.

Combative, aggressive, and demeaning. I agree with you, though. My STBX was the same. She wanted me to pay for everything and she wanted to keep 'her' money to herself. But the way you wrote that always leads to a fight

>If you are going to come back much later than you said, please tell me. He never did.

On board with you on this one. Except she saw it as me wanting to control her life. I told her "we've got a 1 and 3 year old at home, I would like to know where their mother is going to be and when she plans on coming home.. that is not controlling, it is the basic block of a relationship!"

>I apologized and took him out to dinner to say sorry.

You are describing traits of a codependent. Read

But understand this, your STBX didn't make you a codependent, something in your upbringing did. And codependents tend to put themselves in "rescue me" situations.

>He took our son to his friends smoke shop and I told him that wasn’t appropriate.

How old is your son? did he smoke? You realize that once you divorce, if he gets 50/50, then he can do that and you will have no say since it is his parenting time ?

>He flicked our kids in the head, pulled their ears, and spanked them hard enough to leave bruises. I stood up against him and protected them. He yelled in my face and called me a bitch for doing so

Not going to touch this one. Sorry.

>saying you should never criticize a partner is not realistic.

You have a long and hard path ahead of you. I wish you luck. This sub can provide a lot of very meaningful help, just make sure you turn the magnifying glass on yourself and don't spend all your time criticizing your ex

I did a write up a while ago, maybe it might help you

u/ceebee6 · 2 pointsr/Divorce

I highly recommend getting the book Runaway Husbands. It really helped me through this past year. Also, you may think there's not an affair, but unfortunately there probably is.

I know exactly how you feel, especially how a person could go from being the person you've always known, saying loving things, treating you with kindness and love, talking about the future, making plans--and then literally the next day is a cold stranger who has no qualms about hurting you.

I'm a little over a year out from mine. The first bit of time is so, so dark and painful. It feels like you will never stop crying or stop hurting. But you will. The pain is like waves. You just hang on tight and survive right now. And over time, the waves come with less frequency and overall less intensity.

The best thing that you can do right now is focus on yourself and your son. Force yourself to eat, even though you have absolutely no desire to. Put an alarm on your phone for meal times and then choke something down, even if it's just a container of yogurt and some berries. Do things that make you feel good. It is impossible to imagine feeling good right now, but find those few things that can bring even the thought of a smile to your face, no matter how momentarily.

I kept a gratitude journal (still do) in which I made myself write three things I was thankful for every single day. Even if it was something small (like using my coffee mug or a snuggle with my cat). It helped so immensely to focus on the small positives as my world was being torn apart.

It feels like you won't, but you will survive this. You will. And it won't always hurt this bad. I promise.

u/Trying_2 · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Well, if there is a book I could recommend, actually a couple...well..lemme back up.

I read two books recently that I wish I had read way before we started spiraling down hill... I'm currently going through a divorce. One is called "Born To Win" I believe the author is James Muriel ( here is a link: "

The other one I am currently reading is the 5 languages of love. ( )

Fuck if I didn't wish I read these before we got married, there's so much good information and insight on how to love someone and interpret the language of love they convey and speak. We don't always know.

I hope the best for you. Order two copies of both books if you can. Give him a copy and tell him you feel the relationship is in trouble.

Try and repair before you both are in despair.

Best of luck to you.

u/tossit9999 · 4 pointsr/Divorce

BPD is really tough and creates its own set of issues with divorcing. You need to prepare yourself and there are some great resources that can help get you through this. I'd suggest two books, which are both quick reads: Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone With BPD or NPD and Stop Caretaking the Borderline or Narcissist. Document everything and keep a daily journal of events including care of the children. Learn everything you can about BPD and how to help your kids through this. Do not expect cooperation but be thankful when and if it happens. Best of luck to you - it's a tough road and I'm also starting the same journey.

u/solaris79 · 1 pointr/Divorce

Absolutely. My wife told me she wanted a divorce 2 months ago, and it was awful the first couple of weeks. I kept running to help control my emotions, and saw a marriage counselor several times for advice on what to do to save my marriage. It's been really hard, but it's getting better. Where I was 2 months ago vs today... I'm a better me. It's so easy to fall into self-destructive behaviors. Being aware is one thing, but gathering that inner strength to build the willingness to change and be strong... That's a whole different thing altogether.

I read a couple good books over the last two months:

The Divorce Remedy

You Will Get Through This

u/CagedPika · 2 pointsr/Divorce

BPD is serious and lifelong. I am glad you are getting away. My STBX is not diagnosed but checks a lot of the boxes.

I would recommend two books:
Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder on what you and your lawyer can expect

Will I Ever Be Free of You?: How to Navigate a High-Conflict Divorce from a Narcissist and Heal Your Family

I would also make sure your lawyer has experience with High Conflict spouses (sometimes called BPD cases).

I did my prep work before telling her we were getting divorced so I made copies of the last 3 tax returns and paystubs, deed to the house and titles to the cars, and the most recent bills and financial statements. I had lined up a place for me and the kids to run to if necessary.

Clear your exit plan with your lawyer first so you do not make any dumb mistakes.

Good luck.

u/hubbyofhoarder · 1 pointr/Divorce

I didn't take the position that my actions were in any way equivalent, morally or otherwise to those of my ex, nor am I suggesting that you do so. If a mythical sky man evaluated me and my ex, I would nearly certainly be judged to be better. So what? Focusing on how much better I was, or how hard I worked at our marriage doesn't help me to heal, to be a better parent, or be a better partner. I'm not hurting anymore, so I can reflect honestly on some things I did and know that I was not the man, husband and father I wish I had been. Focusing on my superiority also didn't help me understand my own dogged willingness to soldier on in a horrible relationship to my own and my son's detriment.

Have you considered the possibility that you're a co-dependent? Has your ex's life swung further out of control now that you're not there to compensate?

Co-dependent No More by Melodie Beattie might be worth checking out for you:

u/Eclectix · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Depending on your kids' age (if they aren't too old for such books), I strongly recommend these books:

Was It the Chocolate Pudding? Helps kids understand what divorce is and that it's not their fault,

Two Homes Helps kids understand that even though things will be different after divorce, it will still be okay and that both parents still love them.

I think both books also help kids feel more "normal" in their situation.

u/kizdog · 1 pointr/Divorce

My ex wanted a divorce after 12 years ... we had 3 kids. Things started off ok, we traded off weeks... the kids seemed to be adjusting ok. She then went and took a job in another city and moved with the kids (all of that was ok per the divorce decree, just not out of state).

It has been very hard. I only get them on weekends 1, 3, 5 ... it breaks my heart to be away from them for so long. They aren't adjusting too well. Each time I say good bye is difficult ... tears all around. Talking to them every night is not the same. That being said, we've been working hard (the kids and I) to build a better relationship. I have a better relationship with my youngest than I did while married now ...

If you take off you will regret it. Moving past the punishment mentality is a must ... and it is difficult. Then there is the "I don't want to do jack" phase ... I'm in that now ... being productive is a chore ... but it must be done. You have to push through. See a therapist if you need to ... hold your kids and just remember that there still exists a relationship with each of them that is worth fighting for ... they aren't broken. They need you. They want you. They love you. You need to push on so you can be there for them. You will have time for yourself when they are with their mom ... but work to make that time worthwhile and productive.

Lastly, don't hate yourself for your thoughts. Thoughts can be changed. Until they become actions, they are not concrete things ... change your thoughts, change your perspective.

Have a look at the following two books, recommended by my therapist:

u/Mox_Ruby · -1 pointsr/Divorce

You want to know why she's doing this and you are asking for resources.

Pal, today is your lucky day because I have a book that has all the answers that you seek. I warn you though, the truth is horrible and will make you rage like you have never raged before. Once you let it sink in, you will be liberated and in a stronger position to select a new long term partner based on truths.

Here it is:

Good luck.

If you unplug, make sure you pass it forward and save another man. It's why I'm here.

u/bobdawonderweasel · 4 pointsr/Divorce

My wife left last October and I felt the same way you do. Three months out I feel much better than when it started. Like others have said "it's time to work on you". Physical activity will help greatly. This book is helping me now. Hang in there. It does get better :)

u/UnluckyWriting · 4 pointsr/Divorce

I did NOT want a divorce.

It was entirely unexpected - totally out of the blue - and I still do not understand what the hell happened.

We would have been celebrating our first wedding anniversary next Monday. I feel like I didn't even get a chance to be married before he bolted.

I lost 20 lbs. I broke out in hives all over my body. I didn't sleep for literally weeks, when I did sleep I would have nightmares. I cried so much my eyes were nearly swollen shut. It was trauma, plain and simple. I was a shell of myself. Its only been two months since and I am obviously still recovering from it.

But here is what finally broke through the noise in my head: a person who could do this to me - make me feel this way - is not a person I want in my life. He did horrible things to me. He lied, cheated, deceived, gaslit, etc. He destroyed my self esteem. I am disgusted with him as a human. I cannot imagine having to spend my life married to such a monster.

I know its hard to see your husband as an evil POS but that was the mental shift I had to make. I had to release entirely the idea that he was a "good guy" and accept that good guys do not do this. And once I really internalized that, it became clear that I was not in love with my husband anymore - because he was not a good person anymore. and once that happened, the emotion I felt most strongly was RELIEF. Relief that I am not stuck with a bad man anymore. Actual real gratitude that he left me.

The thing is, your husband isn't a good guy either. A good guy doesn't have affairs and he doesn't treat you like shit and he doesn't string you along. If you really get down to brass tacks, you will not want a person like that in your life.

Your kids will survive. I suggest this book as it has some good guidance for dealing with children. It says breakup but the authors own story is one of divorce.

u/visinefortheplank · 4 pointsr/Divorce

This book is awesome, and has really helped me assess where I'm at in the process emotionally, and has given me exercises and goals that are helping me move further along. I feel that by reading and doing the assessments and exercises it provides, I've really gotten to a more peaceful place, especially with regards to my anger at my cheating ex, so that now I can interact with her more easily when I need to.

It is simply loaded with great advice for those going thru or gone thru the divorce process. What to do vs what not to do, what helps you recover vs what will slow your recovery. I recommend it highly.

u/not-moses · 1 pointr/Divorce

Gonna start with my regular checklist for family members, and then move into some other stuff, understanding that you've already checked some of these off:

Fundamental issues first:

  1. Have a look at the CoDA website to try to grasp some of the interpersonal dynamics in play.

  2. Take a look at these article on the KDT to see where you and they fit on the triangle (because everyone in this culture is on that thing).

  3. Have a look at the five stages of therapeutic recovery to see where they are... and get a sense of whether or not they can move from the stages they are in to the next one.

  4. Are they abusing drugs or alcohol? If so, will they go to rehab or to AA, MA or NA? Because if they are substance abusers and will not go to rehab or a 12 Step program, they are firmly at stage one of the five stages of therapeutic recovery, and the only thing you can do is walk away and protect yourself.

    Advanced issues second:

  5. If they seem caught in the consensus trance, are they capable of understanding that? And are they motivated to dig out?

  6. What financial resources (e.g. health insurance or savings) do they have? Are they sufficient to get them into a kick-start for their problems that may be as (relatively) inexpensive as a few visits with a psychiatrist (med prescriber) and/or a clinical psychologist (assessor and treatment suggestor) and/or a psychotherapist (who has experience with the therapies appropriate for her specific condition).

  7. Will they go to (and stick with) ACA, EA and CoDA to get an at least somewhat educated support system around her?

  8. Will they dig into the information on the Internet, and in thousands of excellent books one can easily find online (there's junk out there, as well; one will need to learn to discern the chicken pooh from the chicken salad), to enlighten her as to her condition and what to do about it? (See all these links: the CBTs including REBT, collegiate critical thinking, CPT, and schema therapy, as well as EMDR, DBT, MBCT, ACT, MBBT, MBSR, [SEPt](, HBCT, NARM, SP4T and 10 StEPs of Emotion Processing.)

  9. Will they use what they learn to dig into and do workbooks like these, and these and these and these?

    If -- after all that -- you're where I think you are, the best thing you can do is get everyone else on board with The Facts by reading books like these:

    Nina Brown's Children of the Self-Absorbed: A Grown-Up's Guide to Getting Over Narcissistic Parents

    Eleanor Payson's The Wizard of Oz and other Narcissists: Coping with the One-Way Relationship in Work, Love, and Family

    Lindsay Gibson's Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents: How to Heal from Distant, Rejecting, or Self-Involved Parents

    Elan Golomb's Trapped in the Mirror: Adult Children of Narcissists in the Struggle for Self

    Susan Forward's Toxic Parents: Overcoming Their Hurtful Legacy and Reclaiming Your Life (a bit long in tooth now, but still useful) and Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You

    Kimberlee Roth & Frieda Friedman's Surviving a Borderline Parent: How to Heal Your Childhood Wounds & Build Trust, Boundaries, and Self-Esteem

    Naomi Feil: The Validation Breakthrough: Simple Techniques for Communication with People with Alzheimer's (because, Alzheimer's or not, he has to be treated as though he is demented).

    Because there's almost nothing worse than a dry -- but actually untreated -- alcoholic defending himself with the very common distortions of the 12 Steps & 12 Traditions one sees in the rooms of AA among the self-righteously narcissistic. He has his defense mechanisms for a reason, and if he is not experiencing emotional pain himself, that reason will remain outside his consciousness.

    You can try the intervention route with someone skilled at motivational interviewing, but based on what you wrote -- and almost 30 years' experience with this sort of thing -- the prospects do not look good for anyone but those of you who do what I suggested.

    Call the police, and run all this down, especially if you have personally witnessed him being abusive and or violent with your mother, and be prepared to testify in court. Get an attorney to do a TRO and PRO. Tell the police as soon as the TRO is in place. Get your mother safely moved.
u/beautiful_ashes · 3 pointsr/Divorce

She's 6. We just recently moved into separate homes. These are the two that we used for her. We read "Two Homes" and then asked why she thought we read it to her. She answered, "Because you love me?" <3 We told her that we did and then discussed how things would be similar. She's asked questions since then and been emotional at times, but I was just telling her last night how proud I was for how she's been working through it.



u/hermes369 · 1 pointr/Divorce

Here's the article that got me thinking this way:

My ex was a big fan of Eat, Pray, Love, as she was also a big fan of this piece of self-justifying bullshit:

By the same author? Cheating is GOOD, don't you know!

I will admit that I'm bipolar, have ADD, take high-powered narcotic analgesics for pain daily, have sleep apnea, and smoke like a chimney; so, I'm not the most reliable of narrators nor am I much of a "catch." I should not, however, be pessimistic about the possibility of others finding ways to stay together and experience all of those positive things you mentioned above. In other words, you're right and I stand corrected: get married if you want! I still believe the man shoulders the majority of the risk but that's just how it is.

By the way, though I can't speak for golf or NASCAR, you really should give ballet a chance.

u/gonzoparenting · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Your wife is clearly an alcoholic. That doesn't make her an inherently bad person, but it does mean she isn't fit to take care of your kids.

You need to try and have your kids as much as possible and keep them away from their mother, especially at night.

You also need to read up on co-dependency because I am pretty certain you are one. And I say that as a co-dependent.

Read or listen to "Codependent No More". It will change your life.

u/ilovezombies33 · 2 pointsr/Divorce

I'm sorry to hear you're feeling this way. Lord knows, most of us have been in your shoes. I found help in reading books. Seemed like a stupid suggestion from a friend, but there are alot of self-help books out there. One in particular really seemed to resonate with me, and i recovered faster because of it. I'll hotlink it below but it or another one like it might be worth a read. You can get cheap used editions usually too.


u/ShawnaeJames · 1 pointr/Divorce

Hi, love! I encourage you to read this book;

What you’ve experienced is unfortunately much more common than people discuss. There is also a Facebook community for abandoned wives based on the book that might be helpful to you!

u/xplorer1701 · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Sorry to hear, but don't lose hope. I'm 49, my stbxw has left our marriage for the second time, I'm still healing, but I have a lot of hope for my future. You should as well.

She cheated one you, and that is a big reason to let her go. That violates a trust that you may never have been able to restore.

Right now you're wallowing in your pain, and I get that. You need to do the following: exercise, take up a new hobby, read self-help books, spend time creating new memories, take time to heal, learn your lessons from your failed marriage and don't repeat them, and most importantly, be patient with yourself.

I recommend you read these books:




    The Robert Glover book is like a kick in the pants, or at least it was for me. Regarding my own situation, I'm deeply saddened by my ex wanting to leave again. I was very much in love with her, but she was not in love with me. She wanted to explore "feelings" she had for another woman, and I wasn't the guy she wanted to spend the rest of her life with. That really hurt, and it sill does, but well... let's just say that while I own my mistakes, my ex's romanticizing of life and need to sustained highs to make her feel happy was impossible to meet. I wish her well, but I have my own life to lead now.

    You do too. It will take time, but you'll get to the other side of hell. Follow the advice I and others give you, and see what works for you. Remember rough moments are just that... moments to get through. Life will get better and you'll see light in the darkness again. Stay the course.

u/zoomzoom42 · 1 pointr/Divorce

Well...even though the decision is out of your hands at this point this book might be able to give you some perspective and acceptance with the decision. It takes a step by step approach with questions to work through about whether a relationship is worth being in.

u/SO_of_AntiVaxxer · 1 pointr/Divorce

After you break the news, here are a couple of children's books that might help to expand the concept:

Invisible String

Two Homes

u/a_thousand_lifetimes · 1 pointr/Divorce

My therapist recommended I read this book and it’s been really helpful for me: When things fall apart

u/lannanh · 1 pointr/Divorce

I know this feeling, I've been there often and occasionally still find myself there.
One thing that really helped me when my divorce first started was this book. It's Buddhist but that may still work with your scientific, atheist beliefs? And they have it on Kindle now so you can start it immediately.
Things start to slowly turn around but it takes a really long fucking time and you don't move forward linearly, I see it more like a spiral of concentric circles.

u/mythrowaway612 · 1 pointr/Divorce

I'm in the process of dicorving someone who is mentally ill as well. The book Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder really helped put things into perspective (which I had read it beforehand). /r/NarcissisticAbuse/ is another good resource. Protect yourself, things will probably get worse before they get better.

u/whatadayholytoledo · 1 pointr/Divorce

I can already see that you’re getting a ton of “reality check” responses in here, so let me just offer you some support. I know exactly what you’re feeling. It’s happening to me now. I have a young child, too. I’m very sorry.

It’s a terrifying feeling. Feels like you’re losing control. And you are, to a certain extent. You’re losing control over the life you imagined you would have. It’s a deeply sad place to be, especially for a parent. There is a real mourning that needs to take place. Sounds like you’re in it.

Remember, though:

You DO however have control over your decisions now, today, and moving forward. This is still your life. She didn’t take it away from you. You’re living it right now. You can either exhibit your rage to your family, or you can acknowledge it and deal with it in a way that makes you stronger.

I encourage you to let out those emotions in a way that’s healthy for you, and doesn’t involve your ex or your child. Don’t let anyone tell you what you should be feeling, but listen closely to those who have good ideas about how to deal with feelings in a smart way. The decisions you make right now about how to deal with you pain and loss will likely impact the rest of your life. Spend the time to learn what the smart decisions are.

There is a light path... and a dark.

I recommend Susan Anderson’s book on abandonment recovery to everyone I know who was left behind by their spouse. It really helped me. Here is a link:

Again, I’m very sorry. And you’re not alone. And this doesn’t define your value as a person and a father, unless you let it. You’re the captain.

u/laughterandtears · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Get your own lawyer and put a temporary agreement in place. Don't ever talk to her lawyer about anything.

And read this book:

u/remembertosmilebot · 1 pointr/Divorce

Did you know Amazon will donate a portion of every purchase if you shop by going to instead? Over $50,000,000 has been raised for charity - all you need to do is change the URL!

Here are your smile-ified links:

Healing After Loss: Daily Meditations For Working Through Grief


^^i'm ^^a ^^friendly bot

u/mddede · 3 pointsr/Divorce

Even though you are no longer dealing with the alcoholism you should try reading this book. My therapist suggested it and it changed not only my understanding of the problems but allowed me to find my way out of them as well. Good luck.

Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Ca...

u/20182019_Throwaway · 1 pointr/Divorce

Read this and go through the exercises:

Too Good to Leave

u/still-standing · 2 pointsr/Divorce

When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times (Shambhala Classics)

u/temporaryalpha · 2 pointsr/Divorce

The Power of Now and It's Easier Than You Think are 2 good starting points.

When you're struggling with the voice of dread (I had that a LOT) the first thing you have to realize is that you are creating it yourself--your brain is making that voice. The same way you never would confuse an eye twitch with yourself, you need to learn not to confuse a "brain twitch" with yourself. You are not that thought.

I also would recommend a meditation app like 10% happier.

Meditation is designed to focus on the now, on the idea that right at this minute you are okay, and that all your fears about the future are imaginary, in that you simply are creating them with your own thoughts. It's all about focusing on your breathing, and every single time your thoughts stray (as they do for everyone) you simply learn to bring your thoughts back to your breathing. It is far harder than it seems. And in trying to do it you learn to control your thoughts and you distract yourself from fear.

I am telling you: surviving divorce requires every ounce of concentration. It is like fighting a bear, and every single day you survive is a victory.

Also, I personally have decided that no matter what I am trying to be kind and good through this whole process, even if it means I do not get whatever money I might be entitled to. As long as I have access to my children, I can survive anything. I need them. And I need to be able to live with myself at the end.

It has been so difficult, but I have learned more about myself and more about my spouse than I ever could have imagined.

For the first 2 months I cried constantly. I work in a building with maybe 100+ other people, and every single one of them knew what I was going through.

You learn in a hurry just how many friends you have when you suffer.

u/BiggsDB · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Although I sometimes find it hard to sit and focus on reading, this book is very structured and insightful. It was recommended to me, and I shall pass it on:

u/crazyex · 3 pointsr/Divorce

I did not read OP history, but if your assessment is correct, OP needs to read this

u/LittleHelperRobot · 1 pointr/Divorce

Non-mobile: You Will Get Through This

^That's ^why ^I'm ^here, ^I ^don't ^judge ^you. ^PM ^/u/xl0 ^if ^I'm ^causing ^any ^trouble. ^WUT?

u/GayForToday124680 · 0 pointsr/Divorce

You want to know why this happened to you? The answers are in this book.

Knoledge is Power, insulate yourself from this in the future.

There is an opportunity here for you to unplug and see the world for what it really is. This is not your first rodeo, you have a daughter from a previous failed union.

Now is the time for you.


u/SuperSaverLillian · 4 pointsr/Divorce

Pema Chodron's "When Things Fall Apart"

> Only to the extent that we expose ourselves over and over to annihilation can that which is indestructible in us be found.

One of the many lessons from the book that stuck with me, yet there's an untold number more. Single-handedly kept me sane and taught me a lot about resiliency in general.

u/inthecloudsagain · 1 pointr/Divorce

Try getting a copy of this book. It helped me in a similar situation.

Too good to leave, Too Bad to Stay

u/juwells · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Here's one:

This one really helped me through the worst parts of my divorce:

She should really file those divorce papers, if anything, just for herself to move on, she can always stop the proceedings should he become mentally stable again. She cannot help him if he doesn't want to help himself, and of all things, she needs to help herself step out of this nightmare. Good luck to your sis.

u/1978_anon_guy · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Good to hear from you dinosaurs_r_awesome, I remember you from BPDLovedOnes
I've been going through a lot of the scenarios outlined in Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder I read that book early on after my separation and as a result I had some predictability for the crazy moves my ex pulled / is pulling in the divorce process. I'm not surprised or left "reeling" by her moves. I'm just disappointed that judges and lawyers allow combative tactics from my ex and do not rein her in. What I've been able to figure out is that family court judges and lawyers encourage "high conflict" out of self interest. Judges get more court dates / work out of it (fill out their future calendar) and lawyers get more money. I know that I will never get married again (no matter what, even if each future girlfriend I'll date leaves because I won't get hitched) I really don't mind growing old single. Marriage followed by a high conflict divorce allows a bunch of self-interested strangers (lawyers and judges) access to all your assets and future income. They drain you financially. Your kids don't go to college. Courts are chartered to protect the weak from the strong, yet it has been my experience that they do exactly the opposite. Lawyers and judges drain my financial resources which ends up affecting my kids' future. Just don't get married. Less liability, you have less chance of ending up bankrupt and on the street. The whole court system is shit, so is the legal institution of marriage.

u/dday_throwaway3 · 2 pointsr/Divorce

> I walk around on eggshells all the time.

That key phrase is important. You might be dealing with a borderline personality disorder spouse. I highly recommend you read the book Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care about Has Borderline Personality Disorder. If that resonates with you, then read the follow up book Splitting: Protecting Yourself While Divorcing Someone with Borderline or Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

Forget dating until after divorce. You need time to heal, and rushing back into a relationship too soon will make you vulnerable to a predator.

As far as guilt goes, marriage takes two committed spouses. Those vows are not one sided. So stop feeling guilty you're the only one trying to uphold them.

u/NeuralHijacker · 3 pointsr/Divorce
  1. Get this book read it, and follow the instructions

  2. Get a lawyer who understands the behaviour patterns. My first one didn't and kept expecting XW to be reasonable. This failed. My new lawyer took one look at her communications, said "you will never, ever reason with this person" and has helped me get it to court asap. Mediation etc is fine for two normal people who are having difficulties communicating because they are dealing with the emotional fallout of a marriage ending. If one of those people has a PD, it's generally a total waste of time (unless you have a specialist mediator, I suppose).

  3. Get a counsellor who has experience helping people recover from narcissistic abuse. The sooner you start seeing her the better.

  4. Expect hell. Your STBX will lie, cheat, blame to a far greater extent once they know the game is up. But as Churchill said - if you're going through hell, keep going.

  5. Take notes and evidence constantly. Cross reference things. N's are quite convincing liars on the surface, but they have trouble maintaining consistency . That's where you trip them up in conjunction with your lawyer

  6. NEVER, EVER suggest to them or the court that they have a PD. That will go very badly for you. You're not qualified to make that diagnosis, and it may turn the court against you. Instead just focus on patterns of behaviour.

  7. I found this book very useful - it's a book on philosophy which is great for dealing with situations where you have very little power.

  8. Get your family and friends and support network in place before you make your move. Warn them that your STBX may play the victim and try and manipulate them. My XW took to messaging and calling my business partner's wife constantly in an effort to turn him against me. It caused me some problems initially, but we have it sorted now.
u/LepersAndArmadillos · 2 pointsr/Divorce

Was in a somewhat similar place in my marriage. Found this book incredibly helpful:

Too Good To Leave, Too Bad To Stay.

Provides a very detailed look at some of the problems that arise in a marriage and how often that particular problem was likely to be salvageable or not.

u/WCAttorney · 5 pointsr/Divorce

No slap intended at all. My apologies that it was expressed that way.

It's just the process and the reality of it. In my experience, Family court doesn't care, the lawyers don't care, and unless there is photographic evidence someone is beating / abusing the children, the family court kind of dismisses these complaints about the other spouse as emotional background noise, so to speak.

Here's my peptalk for you:
If taking a bunch of raggedy OLD toys and clothes is all it costs to get her out of your house, don't think of it as money lost - then think of it as tuition for the education you are getting - she's teaching you how she will behave in the future. And when people tell show you who they are, believe them. You can look into getting NEW toys and clothes for the kids. Or make it a new activity, you and the kids check out garage sales on the weekends to get replacement toys.

Go for 50-50 shared joint and legal custody and don't accept anything less. The property division, who gets the microwave - it's all bullshit compared to your relationship with your kids. One bit of advice - don't ever move more than short distance away from where your kids are. Stay in their day-to-day lives. It's so super important.

Maybe others have had different experiences, but that's been mine. The higher earner gets screwed and the drama should hopefully all be ironed out within a few years.

At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself, "Is this really worth the cost of what it's doing to me emotionally?"

She's angry, and taking it out on you by trying to grab all the cookies she can. You're absolutely right, the way she is behaving is childish, aggressive, petty, and only serves to make the situation much more hostile. She's wrong for doing that. She and her mother are equating objects and property with value. The kids are the most valuable thing here.

One of life's most basic laws is that every single act of generosity will multiply and return to you many times over. Her actions will have consequences - a good deed is a seed for future kindness; a bad deed is a landmine which will be brought up again and hurt others in the future. She's going to poison her relationship with the kids by these actions, kids aren't stupid.

It sounds like you have been dealing with the emotional rollercoaster for a while. I don't know your situation, but I'd like to suggest you check out the book: by Bill Eddy. He's a mediator and it's a fantastic book for explaining why people do the things they do during divorce. I think you'll recognize your ex in a lot of that book.

I completely and totally understand feeling like "WTF?!?! Attorney you're supposed to be fighting for me!!" Here's the reality - the more you want your attorney to fight, the more money they will be charging you and it's a never ending cycle. You can always make more money.

Good luck to you. I am sorry you're going through this. It's like being an emotional burn victim for a couple of years. You carry the scars with you, but you live to fight another day. Sorry for the novel. : )

u/SkeptiCynical · 10 pointsr/Divorce

Also divorcing a BPD woman. A few notes for you:

  1. Do not talk to police, ever. She will accuse you of something so that she gets the tables tilted in her favor. Do not talk to the police. Don't admit anything, don't answer any questions, and if they call you on the phone, hang up.
  2. Don't sign anything. Not from her, not from her lawyer. Don't agree to any concession, ever. She will use it to extract every dollar, every ounce of emotional energy, and every minute of parenting time from you and your kids.
  3. Check the recording laws in your state. Record every conversation you have with her from here on out.
  4. As soon as it is possible, move back into your marital home. it will be uncomfortable, but it will be a deciding factor in determining custody.
  5. Get in touch with a Domestic Violence group and get a restraining order against her. It may be your first and best line of defense (and she will violate it, I promise).

    A BPD cannot cooperate. They must control, they must preserve conflict and must paint someone as an abuser so they appear as a victim. There is no medication for this. Only years of therapy will help, and BPD don't believe there is anything wrong with them so therapy is never a real option.

    Get ready to stay on the offensive. Your divorce may cost you an arm and a leg but you can not concede anything or you'll spend the rest of your life reeling backwards.

    Pick up a copy of Splitting and follow its advice to a T, even if it seems exaggerated or hokey. Good luck.
u/asdfmom · 6 pointsr/Divorce

I found this book helpful in my decision making process. The therapist has a series of questions and if you answer yes to any one of them, then he says in what he's observed that the people who stayed continued to be miserable and the people who left were happier.

Where I am in my journey is that a spouse isn't a series of checklists. I was guilty of that in my 20's. Here's a list of good things about him, everyone seems to like him...I ignored things that I needed from a spouse which other people don't necessarily need.

> I've tried talking about it for years. The conversations always end with him shutting down and saying he's sorry, or he's just tired, etc etc. I finally stopped bringing it up because I don't want to make him feel bad.

As for having discussions about your needs and him shutting down the conversation is not something a "good guy" would do.

Some people can't be the ones to end a relationship that isn't working. So they push their girlfriend/spouse away so that the partner can end the relationship for them and be the "bad guy." He won't touch you, he's going to work more and see you less, and he can't communicate openly and honestly with you.

Things weren't working in our relationship and we started counseling. For me, the separation came because of my husband's unkindness during therapy. Not because of the original issues that were making me unhappy, but how he reacted. When he heard my perspective, instead of being able to acknowledge why I might have seen things that way and what he could do better, he'd counter by giving a diametrically opposed perspective and then offer...nothing. Things got increasingly bad (he called me names, blamed me for him calling me names) and I separated from him. So not exactly your situation.

Our situation was similar in the way it was always my responsibility to initiate sex. We didn't argue much. He was a ball of negativity.

Maybe try couples therapy? And individual therapy. It didn't "save" my marriage, but it opened my eyes to the ways I had neglected my needs. I didn't even know I had needs! And it isn't selfish to get them met! I advocated for my needs and came to realize that the pain of trying to get him to meet them was never going to be worth it.

If you're taking time apart, maybe consider an individual counselor during that time.

u/seeds_of_change_TA · 6 pointsr/Divorce

> as time went on I became increasingly more depressed (not entirely his fault, genetically predisposed to depression here) and my sex drive took a dive

I thought I was pre-disposed to depression too. I was severely depressed and has extreme anxiety the last few years of our relationship. Now, 9-months post separation, I feel like myself for the first time in years. Your husband is making you depressed.

> The sex thing was REALLY hard on him, and made him feel unwanted

OMG, I dealt with this shit so much. He would do X, Y or Z shitty behavior to drive me away, causing me to avoid intimacy with him. Then I was made to be the bad guy - he made me feel so guilty, that I was emasculating him and making him feel unwanted and abandoned. In reality, he is the one who has abandoned you for his other relationship - the bottle (not to mention the other women). He abandons you, makes you feel like nothing, takes you for granted, cheats, drinks, and when you withdraw after all this rejection he makes YOU the bad guy. No.

> I wasn't ready to give up my entire life just because he made a mistake

He didn't make one mistake. He has made a series of mistakes and you keep forgiving him. He is pushing your boundaries further and further to see what he can get away with. He apologizes for mistakes then turns around and keeps doing it, and taking it one step further. To make things worse, he tries to turn it all around on you because of your lack of intimacy which all came about because of his inability to be a decent partner.


What is he actually doing to try? He has begrudgingly agreed to stop drinking for a short amount of time. He is being, as you say, "patient, tender, and understanding." About what?! He should be grovelling on his knees, in intensive therapy to address why he treats you like shit and takes your marriage for granted - all while YOU are showing patience, compassion, and understanding for HIM.

He's trying to blame everything on you, and you're letting him. This is not a judgment. My ex and I had the exact same dynamic for 15 years. Take it from me: let him go. Free yourself. It's not easy. It's the hardest thing I've ever done. But it's so worth it. You must break your codependency, start demanding respect from others, and stop blaming yourself.

These two books helped me in my journey:

Codependent No More
How to Break Your Addiction to a Person