long term relationships

United States
October 15, 2007 10:49am CST
i was wondering if anyone has, recently had a really long term relationship, go bad. and if so, how do you handle it? i'm beginning to question, everything after 22 yrs of being in a relationship, 18 of which was married, if it's time to move on. just seems like, in the beginning i modified behaviors etc that were unacceptable to my partner, thinking maybe some of my behaviors weren't good for us, or the relationship as a whole. and it seemed all was good for a long time. but, then after me, always being the one to modify etc, and being the so called, good one. things changed. and this happened especially, after i stopped drinking, some 8 yrs ago. so, my thinking is...my head is now clear, and my thinking has become clearer, and this is when i really noticed things. i kept seeing things in my partners personality that i never saw before, in the way he acts etc. things that didn't jive with what this person was etc,that i knew all these yrs...or how this person presented themselves, as in personality and beliefs etc. this has caused much discord. which are mostly based from his arrogant attitude changes & antagonistic behavoirs. and i have discussed all of this with my partner, at length...but, it appears that he does not want to make any changes in himself, to modifying behaviors etc, to better the relationship, or himself as a person. which i find to be extremely selfish. because it almost feels like he thinks he has never ever done nothing wrong, doesn't have to modify anything because he's all good with himself, even if it is effecting us. and basically, the way he acts and sometimes he even says, i have to get over it..because its me with the problems since he's fine with who and what he is! but, most of this has also happened after my partner broke a serious promise that was made, to something he did, yrs earlier, that could have ended the relationship yrs ago, but he did it again and that has really crushed me. and although we're working on things, it just seems like once again... i'm suppose to modify & change and he just wants to continue being who he is, reguardless of what it's doing to the relationship. he has always been someone who basically took and got what he needed from me, but i didn't get the same emotional support etc & now because i've expressed that i need things from his, as well, he has totally become someone who talks the talk, but doesn't walk the walk ! and worse, he still takes, & give nothing barely anything back because he says, he is happy with who he is no matter how it affect us even when he sees it's making me unhappy to continiously be the one to give, and get nothing back. and this is beginning to worry me because i cannot believe he would still be so selfish, after all these yrs. aren't we suppose to, at this point in our lives, be in the same page etc...or am i wrong in thinking this is not the way it should be after 20+ yrs?
3 people like this
5 responses
@mamasan34 (6521)
• United States
15 Oct 07
I don't know what your husband did that you can't speak of here. I am assuming he committed adultery. If he did this, then you most certainly have a reason to leave and not look back. It seems you are doing all of the work and he is collecting all of the benefits. That is not fair in the least. I would suggest to you that you speak to him about counseling for himself and for both of you, and if he refuses to change that you will be leaving because you can't live like this anymore. You change as a person over the years, some for the good and some people for the bad or they stay the same. My parents have been married for 35 years and believe me, there is little peace in that house. They are never on the same page and my mother does all of the work while my father collects the benefit. It isn't fair in the slightest. No one should be that miserable in a marriage. When you spend your life with someone, it should be because you want to and it is a good thing, not because your stuck together. It's a lot to think about and you just really have to think what you can live with and what you can live without, if one outweighs the other, then it's time to go.
2 people like this
@she1by (1)
• Canada
18 Oct 07
I've been with the same man for 20 years. He's now my husband. In the last year I've felt totally abandoned by him in many ways. He will be selfish and make decisions regarding our lives without talking to me first. I guess I'm just along for the ride. Anyway I've had to go through some sleepless nights wondering if I am going to continue with this and thinking we are probably not going to end up together. How can we when I'm having my life sucked out of me so there is no me anymore. We've two children who are still elementary age and I'm concentrating on them because that is what I have right now. When my husband failed to commit to attend a wedding on my side and then had the nerve to expect me to go to a family reunion of his family (which they hold every three years or so) I just told him I would live my life and he could live his. I would go to my thing and he could go to his. I've been refusing to go to things with him unless I really want to go. Why waste time going somewhere I don't want to go to be with someone who I guess does not really want to be with me. He's been spending his free time with his friends and not his wife and children so I've decided no more running. He can chase me if he wants me. If he doesn't want me I guess he'll have to make that commitment. I'm not saying this is easy because you think when you're married you should feel love and I know I'm not feeling that. I'm going on the faith that God cares about me and my marriage and that He is able to accomplish amazing things. I've come to the conclusion that the man should seek after the wife otherwise the husband thinks he's the king and his wife is just the slave. The husband should think of his wife as a treasure he doesn't deserve. Maybe that's overly optimistic but I've heard of such marriages. Maybe they're just fairy tales.
• United States
18 Oct 07
we are so, on the same page ! you have expressed many feeling that i feel, so i know exactly what you mean. but, it's sad to know, other are suffering the same as i am. because i know the strain it puts on you, personally, and especially mentally & physically etc. because it's totally draining ! i'm just thankful that my children are grown and have families of their own. i couldn't imagine having to keep it all together, in this condition because i have children to worry about. but it blows my mind, that after all the time & effort we put into these people we end up with nothing. after all, you would think, these types of people would finally find an appreciation for what they have on their lives, mainly a good partner. but today, i guess that's not worth much, to some. because many think there is more, when there really isn't. if you find someone good, that should be enough and you should treasure them but, i find that is is not enough for those few who are totally self centered. they always seem to think, it's all about them, and what makes then happy. no matter how much the cost to the relationship or it's failing. and some even think there are greener pastures are out there for them to find. and i feel, in the end, they will end up alone in this life because very few are willing to give their all, 110% to make things work when they get little to nothing back. sure, they'll have people around them, doing things with them, supporting them etc..but they will also have superficial meaningless relationships. but maybe thats what they want because they can't dig deep within themselves to find the real them. they'd rather survive by denying ! you cannot have one partner giving unconditional love, while the other just takes it all from them and gives nothing back ! and i too, believed there are relationships, that turn out with the fairy tales ending. filled with unconditional love, emotional support etc. but finding it, is a whole other story ! but, because of the behaviors etc that i've endured, it has jaded me some how and this is not the person i am or want to be. so i know enough, and learned the lesson that in order for me to find happiness, i have to put myself first, and others second. and this is one of the hardest things to do when your born to nurture. you think of others needs, wants & desires first, and then your own somewhere down the line, if ever and that's a flaw i find in my own personality. and this is something these self centered people take advantage of, i think ! but, i will hold onto my dreams and hope that he see's the light...and if not, then i will have to find the strength to let go, as much as that's going to hurt. but it would be in hopes of finding happiness and maybe some day, that perfect soul mate that i/we all deserve. because i know it happens. it's just so sad that after 22 yrs, i may have to make the choice, that i got to move onto another path in life ! but better that, then what they will endure once that unconditional love it gone.
@wisedragon (2330)
• Philippines
16 Oct 07
Yes it's tough being in a relationship with someone who is selfish. You really get burned out after some time, and especially 22 years. I myself don't think I could marry someone that selfish, always thinking what's best for her, not a care about me.
• United States
16 Oct 07
i hear you loud and clear, because for the longest time, i didn't see this part of him. i think it was because we were raising kids, we both drank some and i was just too busy with work, the home, school, the kids etc, that i didn't see the real him. that and he is so good at manipulating things & people into thinking he's doing whats right for them. when really, it's all about his goals etc. but i believe in my heart, it took my getting sober, the kids growing up & moving out etc, for me to see the real him. and all those yrs, even though the choices we made together, did benefit us all, it was really his agenda that took priority. but i was so blinded by all thse other things, so i didn't realize any of it until about 8 yrs ago. i am tired and burnt out being the good one, the one giving 110% and getting barely anything back. the one to have to always forgive and move on, get over it etc. i have finally reached the point where, i cannot give anything back. i have needs, wants and desires too, that have been neglected for all these yrs. and he has even said, for yrs, that no one is special, no one is unique and we're all replaceable, which i always took as him being immature etc. but maybe he really believed those things, but i just didn't see that ! but, now that i see the real him, and now that i know he isn't willing to modify somewhat, to benefit the relationship, after 22 yrs...it's all going to end. and thats so sad !
24 Oct 07
Maineiac55, you must ask yourself this question: Do I want to spend the next 25-30 years living like this? That's what I asked myself after 24 years of marriage to a man who was an intimidating bully who always wanted things his way, who totally neglected my emotional and physical needs, and who constantly put me down. My answer was NO, and I moved on. Met a wonderful man who is kind, considerate, and makes me feel very loved. This is not to say that another man is the answer to your dilemma, because you can get on fine without one. Asking yourself this question should help you make a decision as to what you should do. Best of luck to you in whatever path you take.
@izathewzia (5141)
• Philippines
17 Oct 07
I had an almost five-year long relationship but never ended on the altar. it was a college relationship that I valued so much but did not turned out well. We separated and now we are both married. He already leaves in other country and works there.