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#242951 - 08/07/08 12:30 PM He thinks love is a feeling
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
(This post is also in the "guilt" post)

Last night he said he doesn't love me anymore. I told him love is a decision, not a feeling (or rather, in his case, lack of feeling). He thinks that's a bunch of bull.

His reason is that I deserve better. I told him it doesn't matter what he's done in the past, he belongs with me. He said I deserve so much better.

Looks like the end is near - it is his decision, not mine, but I cannot fight him forever on this. It is exhausting and hurtful. He repeated over again that it's not me, it's him... That his 'not loving' me has nothing to do with me! I got angry and told him I hope that one day he loves someone as much as I have loved him, and that the person does to him what he's doing to me, takes away his family life and future and says they don't love him anymore.

I have to get a job and pay off some of my own credit cards. Then I guess it's separate ways.

He still says, "Let's just take it one day at a time." And I thought I heart him mumble "....don't know what the hell I want," and, "I just need time and space....."

If only I could get him to go talk to someone first.
_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2


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#242956 - 08/07/08 12:40 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: Brokenhearted]
BJK Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/02/07
Posts: 1526
But love IS a feeling!

And one very strong result of abusive childhoods is either never learning that feeling or completely shutting that feeling out.

I grew up thinking that love and sex were one and the same. I thought that loving something meant that I wanted to have sex with it. I've grown so much in the last year. I've realized that love is something different.

But it's not a decision. It IS a feeling. And it sounds like your husband has never felt it before. I have a great sadness for him, for since I discovered what love is, I simply cannot imagine life without it.

Bryan

_________________________
Revenge is nothing more than another way of perpetuating abuse.

What the world needs now
Is some new words of wisdom
Like la la la la la la la la la.
-David Lowery

Having a friend who will keep a secret for you is worthless compared to a friend who won't keep a secret from you.

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#242961 - 08/07/08 12:52 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: BJK]
Junefriday Offline


Registered: 06/05/08
Posts: 113
Loc: Canada
Brokenhearted, love is definitely a feeling. However, there are many decisions associated with it. It sounds as though your husband needs to make a decision to let that feeling out/grow, or to squash it.

I am sure that many survivors don't know what to do with that feeling. If someone they loved is the cause of the pain, then their logic goes like this: Loved someone = got hurt = never love again. But sometimes feelings have a tendency to creep up on us and then even if we didn't want to feel love, suddenly we do. But to a survivor, that often triggers pulling back or pushing away.

It doesn't sound like you are getting anywhere trying to analyze his feelings. He won't be much help because it is probably safer for him in his mind if he just doesn't FEEL at all. What if you tried talking to him about what he wants. Not what he thinks is right for you, but WHAT HE WANTS. He will likely talk about what he doesn't want and then maybe you can dissect it a bit by asking why he doesn't want X or Y.

You also need to start thinking about what you want too. If he says that he doesn't want X or Y but those things are very important to you, you need to think about what you'll accept and what you won't.

If he wants time and space, is a brief separation an option?

_________________________
"Love comes to those who still hope even though they've been disappointed, to those who still believe even though they've been betrayed, to those who still love even though they've been hurt before.

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#243032 - 08/07/08 05:54 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: Junefriday]
NY Daisy Offline
New Here

Registered: 02/29/08
Posts: 183
first off thank you BJK for always coming into the family & fiends section and helping us figure out what goes on within all your heads. I hope many more will take your lead and help us out.


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#243039 - 08/07/08 06:10 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: NY Daisy]
NY Daisy Offline
New Here

Registered: 02/29/08
Posts: 183
Brokenhearted, I think that love is an emotion(which is a fancy word for feeling) and a decision. I just bought my H a book about love and marriage. It had little love stories from couples who have been married for 50yrs or more. I bought it for him to show that all of these couples are happily in love, BUT they didn't always feel it, all the time. EVERY COUPLE has problems. Every couple, go through ups and downs. Every couple has doubts about if they are married the right person. What makes it work. IS THE DECISION to work out all the kinks, TOGETHER. One couple said, "when we decided to marry, we took divorce off the table. IT WAS NEVER AN OPTION FOR US." By doing that, they said they made it a commitment to always work through it all, because the only other option for them was to be miserable and unhappy, and they didn't want that either. Point being it will never be perfect, so stop trying to find something that doesn't exsist.

June has some very excellent advice listen to her, my only add on to that would be to maybe ask him " do you really believe that ending our marriage will solve the problem, and make you happy?"

June is right decide what you want, make that your priority. you might be surprised by oyur answers.

Warmly, NYDAISY

P.S. my H loved the book. it really opened his eyes


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#243051 - 08/07/08 07:31 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: NY Daisy]
BJK Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/02/07
Posts: 1526
I think there are different stages of love. There is the initial attraction. The flame, so to speak, that is accompanied by a desire to get to know each other better. Then there is the boundary setting, which I think is the stage that most survivors and partners of survivors get stuck in. Co-depency can easily result from a relationship where boundaries aren't properly set and established, and if this is done in a healthy way, I think we see the growth of the third stage...where each half of a couple is truly part of the other half.

The decision involved in a partnership, though, is more like a commitment that it is like love. I think love might happen as a result of a commitment, and a commitment might happen as a result of love.

I know, it's a nitpick, but I think it's an important one to survivors. My mother's family consists entirely of survivors, and many of them are involved in marriages that are full of commitment but no love. And then there are the marriages that are full of love, and I believe that real love always results in some kind of commitment.

Bryan

_________________________
Revenge is nothing more than another way of perpetuating abuse.

What the world needs now
Is some new words of wisdom
Like la la la la la la la la la.
-David Lowery

Having a friend who will keep a secret for you is worthless compared to a friend who won't keep a secret from you.

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#243090 - 08/07/08 10:46 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: BJK]
mogigo Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/24/07
Posts: 1331
Loc: Colorado
I was talking to friend who asked me why I have such a hard saying "I love you", It was pointed out that growing up my love always had conditions to it. By saying "I love you" the next thing that enters my head is "and what do I need to do to keep you're love". It's alot of pressure on me because the person who was suppose to love me unconditionally always had just one more condition. It became a 37 year losing battle. It hurt so much when she passed away and I had never managed to pull it off.

Just a thought here but maybe it's a test, not that it's right or easy or even an answer, but a test to see if a condition to you're love is him loving back.

In my opinion anybody who wants another to find someone better, it's because they love that person so much.

Trust me I know how f***ed up that statement is, but then you asked what's going through MY head. I capitalized MY because I don't know for sure what you're H is thinking but I thought I'd say what goes through my head when thinking about it.

Standard line: just my thought's

Stay strong
Mike

Edited because I addressed my reply to Daisy, sorry Brokenhearted.



Edited by mogigo (08/08/08 01:28 PM)
_________________________
Thriving

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#243112 - 08/08/08 01:20 AM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: mogigo]
BJK Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/02/07
Posts: 1526
Originally Posted By: mogigo
growing up my love always had conditions to it.


Many survivors, myself included, have no idea what the concept of "unconditional love" is. We think if we mess up, the love will end. I can really relate to this statement.

Quote:

In my opinion anybody who wants another to find someone better, it's because they love that person so much.


I can relate to this as well. "You deserve someone better" isn't something I have ever felt, but I have felt that "I don't deserve to have anyone love me". When a survivor feels that so strongly, there is no level of reassurance that will make that feeling go away, and we get to a point where any amount of reassurance offered starts sounding like it's a lie.

Self esteem is something that can't be repaired by outside sources. I know of two different guys on this site who are both great people. I have offered them both compliments to how much they have helped me in my recovery, and those compliments visibly offended them. They couldn't understand how anything they could possibly done could help anyone else, and my compliments sounded like lies to them.

It might sound far fetched, but I've been there before...so I know it's true. I'm not sure how this relates to the initial discussion other than hoping to shed some light on why partners who have been abused get hung up on certain aspects of relationships.

Bryan

_________________________
Revenge is nothing more than another way of perpetuating abuse.

What the world needs now
Is some new words of wisdom
Like la la la la la la la la la.
-David Lowery

Having a friend who will keep a secret for you is worthless compared to a friend who won't keep a secret from you.

Top
#243226 - 08/08/08 02:12 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: BJK]
NY Daisy Offline
New Here

Registered: 02/29/08
Posts: 183
Dear Mogigo,

The "condition" of my love for my H is that it is "conditionless." I love my H in spite of the fact that there are times he CANNOT love me back. I choose to stay with him, because I LOVE HIM. I have excepted many years ago that this might not end well for me. He at any time can choose to go. I live with my H's issues, he has sexual identity issues, and has told me in the past he might be gay. Ok then if you are, there is nothing I can do. HE must live his life in a way that is best for him. I must live my life in a way that is best for me. Right now we are choosing to move foward together. Tomorrow that might be different.

I have to except what I can't change, and adapt accordingly to it. All this while taking care of our family, & household because he might be too disassociated to help, all without losing myself in the process. DO YOU THINK THIS IS EASY ON US? It's not.

In the many years I have known him, I have been the only constant in his life. I saw him through his first serious breakdown, even though he took it all out on me, I held him in my arms, when he woke up screaming from the nightmares, all before I knew. I held his hand when he disclosed to his family. I held him tight and listened to his pain when they all sided with his perp brother. I live with the day to day things that come up with this, he has tried to push me away many times, with his hurtful words and actions, I have sex with him whenever, and however he wants, I could go on,and on but I think you get my point. I DO ALL OF THIS INSPITE OF THE FACT THAT HE CAN END IT ALL TOMORROW by telling me he has chosen a diiferent path for himself. That is the risk I take. Are you going to say it is not unconditional?

Is it wrong of me to want a little of it back? I know his limitations, but for anyone to grow they have to sometimes take a giant leap foward and TRUST that you will be caught by the one who loves you. MY H knows I will never let him fall, and that makes a big difference for us.

I gave him the book because he thought we were fighting all the time, and did not see how we could be compatable. I look at life like everyone and everything is different. You do not have to agree with everything the other says, and that marriages go through different periods. HE LOVED THE BOOK. It gave him a chance to see nothing is always perfect, but the love can still remain.

As of today, my H loves me, but as you all know, tomorrow ask me again, the answer might be different. ONE DAY AT A TIME.

Lastly, I think that when someone says their partner deserves better than them, I don't think they love their partner more, it is a cop out, so they don't have to deal with their real feelings, whatever they may be.

Just my thoughts, NYDAISY


One last thought, is it fair that my love is constant,and he always knows where it is and can have it at any time, and we woman can't say the same thing.
WHO'S LOVE HAS CONDITIONS? NOT MINE


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#243232 - 08/08/08 02:38 PM Re: He thinks love is a feeling [Re: NY Daisy]
JustScott Offline
Greeter Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2589
.



Edited by JustScott (08/08/08 03:58 PM)

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