I know you write a column for singles, but I really respect how you think so I'm writing to you and hoping you can help.
I have been married less than 3 years. We have two very young children still in diapers. I want out of my marriage because I am not happy at all.
I am the only one that works. Wife always has a reason why she won't. We have not gone out alone since the first child was born two years ago. She does not want anybody to watch our daughter. She can't stay with my parents on Saturday night cuz she doesn't want her going to church on Sunday.
She also posted sh*t on a website about how lazy and worthless I am and she puts me down in front of our kids. It's like I can't do anything right! If I stay in this marriage much longer I see no alternative but to end my life, that's how trapped I feel and how bad I want out.
Have you two gone to marriage counseling? I mean, maybe you already tried that, but since you didn't list it as a solution you've already investigated, I have to bring it up.
I think since you have small children, it would be helpful to give your marriage every possible opportunity to work. Sometimes hearing about yourself from a neutral party makes folks open their eyes in shock. I'm sure she doesn't see herself in the way that you do, with the reverse being applicable as well. Hearing you say to a marriage counselor how what she does and says makes you feel, and that you are tired of her crap and ready to leave her AND THE KIDS could be a reality check.
Marriage counseling will also give her the opportunity to tell her side of the story - because there are always at least two. My motto is "there are three sides to every story - his side, her side, and the real deal".
For example, you say that you are "the only one that works" as if taking care of your home and TWO little babies isn't work. She is probably feeling unappreciated and demeaned for her efforts and exhausted from giving to other people all day, and may be resentful as she feels all you do is think about yourself.
Before I go on I need to deviate a little bit and give you another possible reality check. Let's begin by having you think about how much money you make. Then I want you to write up a list of how much money you spend each month for rent/mortgage, transportation, food, utilities, clothing, medical, etc.
Then I want you to pick up the phone and call some child care centers around San Francisco and ask how much child care for two children would be - and let them know that they are both in diapers. You are going to see that unless your wife is making at least $70,000 a year, most of what she brings home every month will be doing nothing but going to pay exorbitant child care, job related expenses, and increased taxes! So to ME, with two babies in diapers, it doesn't make any sense for your wife to work.
So back to marriage counseling... you gotta give it a try. However, if that fails to improve communication between you, I suggest you move out and move in temporarily with your parents. See an attorney and file for divorce.Get a court order establishing visitation with the children, and do what you need to do for them:
- Do not abandon your children just because you and their mother didn't make it work.
- Do not abandon your children even if she makes it difficult for you to see them because of her anger.
- Do not abandon your children even if you have to take her to court to enforce your visitation rights.
- Do everything you can to make the split and co-parenting arrangement as amicable and respectful as possible.
Remember, she can't fight by herself so you have a lot of power that requires nothing more than steely determination to be an influence in the lives of your babies, and a commitment to not arguing or fighting with her about anything.
Yup, go to her and suggest marriage counseling. If she refuses to go or the counseling merely helps you see that leaving is the right decision, then leave her alone and move on.
After all, that is what divorce is for - to correct horrible mistakes we make when we are young and think we are in love.