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Do you think childhood abandonment can affect marriage

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6:35 am
January 19, 2008


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

I was raised by my father. My mom left when I was probably 8 but spent enough years around to expopse me to her second marriage to an alcoholic who was abusive to both her and me.
My dad raised me to be very strong, very assertive, not a lot of tears, etc. In some ways I am thankful for these traits today.
But, two divorces later and a strained marriage today, I am wondering if this is coming back to haunt me. After an argument, I want to walk away and almost be chased, rescued or something. It really hurts when I don't see my partner give 150% to make me feel better. My husband further invalidates me, accusing me of playing a game with him. It really is not a game; it is very painful and I take it so seriously.
But I remembered one time how we talked about each other's number one fears and I think mine was a fear of abandonment. Only recently did I make the connection.
Unfortunately, his lack of response on many occasions and his failure to recognize how important this is to me has probably left too many scars. I am looking into divorce. I've told him but, again, he isn't taking me seroiusly. And all that does is make me want to prove him wrong or something.
It is sad too because we do love each other. I just don't think I can keep living this roller coaster – when things are good with us, they are REALLY good. But when I need to be carried, he's just not there.
Should I accept that he doesn't want to do this for me? Am I being selfish? I really don't think so. If you love someone, you put things aside and do everything you can (short of being stupid) to make them happy and to make them feel safe.
I am looking at divorce number three, so I do need to start looking at myself some here; I appear to be the pattern.
Thoughts?

6:56 am
January 19, 2008


bonni

New Member

posts -1

((Abandoned))
I am haunted by the ghosts of my mother being abandoned by her father when she was 5 and of my grandmother's mother dying when she was 6. I have been raised with a keen fear of abandonment.

Its not your husband's job to fix what's hurting inside you. Its your job to find your own path to healing. That is your concern.

As to the divorce, are you trying to leave him before he leaves you?

My husband left me to go to Iraq. That triggered a whole host of abandonment issues. Its like he tricked me into loving him and did to me what I had thought he would never do. I thought he loved me. But then for 336 days, I felt so unloved and abandoned. It broke me deep inside.

So my family's abandonment issues predispositioned me to view this thing that happenened to both of us as something that he did to me. I can parse it out logically, but it still comes down to huge emotional damage that was set into motion by the death of my greatgrandmother almost a hundred years ago. Yes, childhood abandonment has a huge effect.

The answer is not in your marriage at this point, its in you. You have to believe that you are worthwhile and worthy on your own, without regard to any relationship. Once you have begun to heal, maybe you will be able to love another person without handing him your baggage. Its your baggage, start by opening it up and seeing if you can let any of it go. YOU may be affected by your mom's leaving, but her leaving wasn't because of or about you. It was about her.

Just like my husband's leaving wasn't about me. It still feels like it, and I'm in the process of letting it go. I don't know yet whether that means letting him go.
bonni

7:12 am
January 19, 2008


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

bonni,
Wow. I can't believe that someone, within 10 minutes, can identify with this abandonment thing. Is your husband military? Mine is. And, coindidentally, he is deployed now as well. Only a 6mo deployement though. We've been married about 18 mos. We should still be honeymooning!

Are you saying that I have two separate issues? –me to heal and then to decide on the status of my marriage?

That's great that you are self-examining first and that you aren't jumping to letting go right away. I probably need to be more like that. As far as me letting go first vs him…I don't know. I consciously don't think he would ever leave me. Truly! I think he would be a fool to leave me because I think that much of myself. But, those unresolved issues buried deep down inside; maybe I am trying to beat him to a place he's not even running to. I've thought of that. And, he's asked me that.

I had said we talked about fears. His was that I would walk away from our marriage (remember, I've been divorced twice!). I don't want a divoce; I love him. But, I really can't handle the aftermath of what are little arguments about insignificant things. The aftermath is me wanting to see him make me feel better and be the "bigger person". He, on the other hand, goes out of his way to appear strong and not call, etc. It is a vicious cycle. I just become more sad and then angry.

He was in a past relationship that didn't deserve his 110% but he willingly gave it. When she broke it off with him, he was devastated – counseling, depression, etc. He would have done ANYTHING to resuce her and have her back. SO, when I ask for space, why is it so easy for him to give it to me????

Yeah, I hear ya. I do value myself. So much that maybe it is a problem. Maybe I've spend all these years feeling like she didn't value me so I INSIST that he value me so much that he'll be that hero or somehting.

8:24 am
January 19, 2008


faceman

New Member

posts -1

bonni,

For starters your Husband had no choice to deploy? He just can not go to his C/O and say I need to stay b/c of my wife/

Two you should be his rock like famous women of the pasy and Nacy Regan who knows things are shaky but they need me the most.

I was in Iraq for 2 1/2 yrs on and off running the roads every day down Satan's Throat. My wife has similar issues as we were shortly married before I deployed and we faught but stuck it out. Now the both of you know being left sucks! I was abandoned by my father at 3 yrs old and raised by my grandparents who installed this old soul in me. I find myself loosing my marriage b/c I want to just be a lone. I feel safe as a loner b/c I don't have no other issues and conflicts to deal with but my own. I seem to not make my wife happy emotionaly b/c I was raised see my granpa provide and no efection to my Grandma as she was ok knowing she was taken care of. She stayed with him all the way to his death bed of 61 yrs of marriage.
I pride myself of that and have bought my wife the world, yet she has left me b/c she needs constint effection even I do hug her once and a while and hold her at night when asleep.
I believe all of us kids who had abandonment issues tend to find safety whatever it seems to be, as mine is being alone most of the time. But I do miss my wife and she will never really get me.

9:35 am
January 19, 2008


bonni

New Member

posts -1

((Abandoned))
My husband is in the National Guard, so he's military and we never expected year long deployments. We weren't prepared and I certainly never would have had kids with him, had I known he wouldn't be there to raise them.

The separation of deployment triggers those abandonment issues big time. Yes, I think you have two issues and the most important one is your healing.

I understand the0 view that demanding your husband to value you according to your expectations as self love, but really aren't you just testing him and asking him to prove you are loveable? Can he really do that for you?

Can you love yourself enough to let him love you in his own way and own time? How are you meeting his needs and respecting his fears? When you truly love yourself, his demonstration of love for you will not be something you need to prove you are loveable.

bonni

9:41 am
January 19, 2008


bonni

New Member

posts -1

Faceman,
No, my husband didn't have a choice about leaving physically, but he had a choice to let go emotionally. I'm no wonder woman and I'm no rock. I don't have enough to give to support him our children and my staff without any support in return.

He threw me away into a deep pit of despair. I had to let go of him in order to find my way back into a life. Its just very sad. My heart is broken and all the admonitions to play devoted wife waiting on her husband to bother to come home doesn't make that a life worth living.

When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a professor, not a wife. I thought I had found a partner, but he turned me into a wife. It doesn't suit me.

bonni

9:50 am
January 19, 2008


Codi202

New Member

posts -1

Yes, in fact, it does.

4:58 pm
January 19, 2008


faceman

New Member

posts -1

I understand as my wife is feeling the same and more OIF vets I come across are all in dire straits. This war was not to be the way we have faught it and I surley did expect it to change my way of thinking as it has.

I know I have lost a lot, I have a weak emotional state now to where I am numb or highly emotional for a hour or two than I regain myself.
I too have a harsh career where I have to have the answers all the time. I build Hospitals in DC so I need to be alert. What happens though I come home spent so spent I want to work out for balance than crash for tomorrows events. Well doing this has deserted my wife who feels i am no longer interested. But its wrong I do love and miss her but I miss myself too, as life is different now and I feel I am missing out if I am not out in it. Not just home cuddled up with my wife like she would want. 13 times and lost count of being killed there changes a man. I was Special Forces and behind lines so I hade to become a Arab and think like them which I lost a lot of myself. No we are apart and I feel I want a do over!

6:51 pm
January 19, 2008


bonni

New Member

posts -1

Sometimes we just have to make the best of what we've got. You deserve to have your needs met, but not at the expense of one person never getting her needs met. Same for her. I hope you can come to a solution where both of you can get your needs met, but you have to talk alot to figure out what those are and how you can get them met, without asking the other to pretend a life.

Its frustrating. I'm trying to be caring as I can, without lying or faking. This war has had a huge impact on many lives and the ripples will continue to spread for years, maybe decades.

bonni

7:18 pm
January 19, 2008


Codi202

New Member

posts -1

I was going to post about what i went through; but as happened in the past, I can't get the words to come together.

I think it began with my father's father leaving taking off on his family before i was a gleam in my father's eye. I think that lead to whatever was going on with him. I was daddy's little girl, or so I thought. Mom hated me before i was born.

I have no family today. So I have abandonment issues BIG time!

I have never married.
In fact, I don't trust anyone to keep their commitments, but I do EXPECT them to — at least conciously.

7:21 pm
January 19, 2008


Codi202

New Member

posts -1

I guess what I am trying to say is that it affects your ability to trust and so it affects your relationships — a lot.

It doesn't mean that you can't get past that though. It is the same as co-dependency. You need to learn new behaviors to use in a healthy realationsip because your have not learned them yet. In fact, someone like me has learned to keep perpetuating the abuse and abandonment — unconciously.
So, Here I am?

I hope that gives SOME insight, at least. It was hard to say.
:)

12:26 am
January 22, 2008


Anonymous

New Member

posts -1

please someone convince me that I am not thinking wiselu. I know I don't have the coping skills to deal with this. I am frowing to be dangerous to myself amd I am so scared; promise- no danger to anyone else but myself. I just feel so worthless right now. This was my best friend and the keeper of my heart. He took it, knowing my fears, and has neglected to take care of me for over ten days. I am his wife and I always believed he would make me his priority. I mam so shocked and so hurt. I;ve never felt this let down before. I called this lady from my church. HJer sister answered and she was all pissed off that i calle dso late. I am on the ege. I'm really scared of myself . I have two kids I should never be willing to leave. I am only perpetuating the pattern then, right? I really don't have the skills to cope wiothi something slike this. Very afraid


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