Thursday, January 13, 2011

Dear You: I'm willing to be something of a friend

Shelle Edit: Here is another "Dear You" letter I got over the weekend--to continue with our Dear You Series.  Thank you so much for sending them in.  I love how you tell me that it is therapeutic for you to write these things down and get these thoughts and feelings out. If you have advice or words of agreement or experience for this person please put it in comments.  Thanks again everyone!

Image taken from HERE
Dear You...

You said yourself that "we've never been married" or that our marriage failed "a long time ago." I understand that part of that was a justification for your infidelity. People in your position say a lot of things that are sometimes very far from reality, but I think you really believe it. Or at least don't know what else to say to explain yourself.

You've texted me asking whether or not I ever loved you. It's difficult to look through all the mistakes, missed opportunities, pain, and hurt and see even a general sense of love between us, even looking back all the way through 10 years of marriage. I think it was there sometimes, but it was obviously not what you expected or not enough of what you expected.

It's been 3 months since I moved out. 3 months since I've been frustrated and angry to the point of scaring myself. It's been almost 8 months since I told you I'm done trying to reconcile.

I've learned a lot from this experience, but I don't think I've changed much. The guy who quit and moved out is the same guy who instigated 3 different counseling attempts; with you not really wanting anything to do with it. Yeah, you attended the sessions, but you weren't really there and you quit early. It was tough. You criticise me for trying only for a year. For giving up after you spent 8 years "trying to make it work." During the last year I think I got a lot closer to realizing what I didn't understand during those 8 years. I didn't know what you needed. Besides the fact that you never told me what you needed, there's a difference between outright rejection of reconciliation and not understanding the problem. I was still there, willing to listen if you had a problem, but either I never understood or you never told me. A lot of it was because we didn't try to communicate on the other persons terms, but always thought we were saying it in a way the other should understand. Personally I thought I made huge strides towards correcting that, but in the end I thought it was too little, too late.

I think I know why you send me text messages now, asking "Did you ever love me?" or telling me "I will always love you." You're scared. Maybe you can't imagine a decent life without the security I provided. The security and stability you took for granted. I'm certainly not criticising you for that, you have every right to feel the way you do, but it doesn't endear me to you. It doesn't make me want to reconcile. It might be part of a larger effort to reconcile, but it can't be the only thing. 

I don't think you really understand what needs to happen. You need to change. For your own good. Not just learn new things and apply them. If you're ever going to have another serious relationship you need to change how you think about things. Not everything is success or failure. Not everything is wrong or right. I know I would have to change some things before I ever started another serious relationship again, but I'm not there. I don't really want to yet. At this point I don't see us coming back together any time in the future, but if you have any desire to see that happen, you can't do this weird stuff. You can't gloss over the problems with a random 'I love you.' 3 different professional marriage counselors told you what needs to happen. You're still not doing it. It was sad to see the resignation on those counselors faces. They saw the futility of trying to counsel someone who didn't want to be counseled. All three of them reacted the same way. I would imagine you didn't see it though.

At this point, I'm not going to react or even respond to these strange text messages. Beyond the fact that it's kind of pitiful; it's just not nearly enough. Although maybe it is doing something because it forces me to think about you, but they aren't the best thoughts. I can't tell you exactly what needs to happen, but this is not it. I'd be lying if I said I wanted to reconcile, but if it did happen, I can only imagine reconciling with a different person. A different you. Someone who can effectively tell me what they want me to hear. Someone who is not cryptic. You don't even need to know exactly what you want. Sometimes I don't know what I want. But you should be able to recognize that you don't know.

I'm not going to ask you to be different any more. Me, my family, and three professionals couldn't convince you of anything. It's going to take a miracle straight from God. I believe a lot of the work done during that year was from God. Now I just pray it doesn't take another crisis that does lasting damage to our children.

I'm willing to be something of a friend. Maybe hang out at the occasional family function together. You probably don't understand what it's taken to get to that point. But I still don't want to be married to you and not even a really good friend. I don't really want to hear about your day and I don't want to tell you how my day was. Not that you'd ever ask...


If you guys have any questions on how to send a letter in because you'd like to try one yourself... click HERE.


Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I think the place where you are at is a really hard point to come to, especially when you were thrown into coming to that decision on the actions of your spouse... or ex-spouse.

It's hard from her stand point that she realizes she no longer has that power over you...

I'm sorry when anyone has to go through this... marriage isn't easy, but neither is divorce, not matter what people may tell you otherwise.

TisforTonya said...

this was rough and real all at the same time - I love it! It sounds like it's been a really hard road to get to this point and I think I breathed a sigh of relief for you at the end... knowing that at least now, finally - you are able to move on emotionally (even if she isn't yet)

UP said...

There are some questions which should not be texted to anyone. One problem in this relationship is that the communications broke down long ago.

One must keep UP with the conversation if anything is to work.

But, this one...well, it's hopeless.


Emily said...

Very powerful these always seem to be. Communication combined with refusal to change or even try to change makes this story sad but perhaps your decision to move out a good one. Wish you the best of luck moving forward.

wendy said...

that is just sad. the end of a relationship/marriage is always sad (whoa, listen to me, someone who has been married 3 times....long story) can't ever dismiss the pain.
she is definitely confused (my opinion) and scared, and feels no longer able to "control" the situation.
after effort, counseling, and all that, if it didn't work...well, it didn't work. time to move on.
texting is lame.....talking face to face is the only way to really communicate.
texting is kinda the cowards way out....but that is cause I am old school.