I picked J up on Saturday.  It was good to see him, a little anxiety provoking, but good nonetheless.  Over the weekend, I just tried to keep things very neutral.  He’s got some severe jet lag and it is apparent that we are on two very different planes of communication.  I think this is due in large part to the fact that I have been in individual and group therapy.  So, I didn’t really think it would be productive to delve into relationship issues right away.

To the communication/perception issues, we’ve been having this discussion about him possibly working internationally since we first found it was a possibility in January of last year.  Even then I told him I thought it was a bad idea for a number of reasons, one of the main being that he wanted to start a family but would be gone for a month and back for two weeks.  I told him that wasn’t going to happen and told him why.  He wanted me to consider it.  Now, he has the opportunity to do a rotation in Nigeria.  I know he wants to do it, but I feel that it is a bit unrealistic given the current state of our relationship and the fact that he STILL wants to have kids.

I have worked in higher education for a number of years and prior to coming here, I had to give up an amazing job so that J could take a job with the company that he wanted to work for.  I told him that my former boss called me about a job (not the first time he’s called me) and that we had an interesting conversation that ended in my former boss telling me that he would want me to come work has his Chief of Staff with a tenure-track faculty appointment if/when he gets a presidential appointment (which he will in about a year or two).  Basically all could ever want professionally.  We were talking about this over breakfast on Sunday.  The short of it is that J told me that he doesn’t want to change industries and that he doesn’t want to leave his current job for the next 5 years; basically saying that he isn’t supportive of this opportunity.  He’s supportive if it means he doesn’t have to sacrifice, but if he does, he’s not supportive, you know?  I reminded him of everything I gave up (two orchestra job offers so he could stay in school and didn’t have to transfer and most recently, a job that I loved so that he could take a job he wanted).

I think this just goes to show that we are not thinking on the same plane.  He’s got a lot of work to do in terms of understanding my needs.  I didn’t go to school for 11 years, get a Ph.D. and work my ass off to become a broodmare for someone who thinks it is completely acceptable to leave me for a year/year .5  (one month off, two weeks back) while pregnant or with an infant.  So, we’ve a lot of work to do.  lol.

I’m meeting with my therapist today and am looking forward to it.  J is supposed to meet with him before we meet as a couple, but J doesn’t really like the idea.  I get the impression that he still doesn’t understand that there are some really big issues that need to be addressed.  In his mind, he’d rather just sweep the last few months under the rug and more forward without finding the right way to move forward.

I’m really trying to be open to this and to him so that I can make the best decisions moving forward.  I want to give him the “handicap” since he’s basically just been working and living it up in Europe.  We’ll see.  I’ll keep you posted about how he takes to reality.




4 comments on “Readjusting

  1. Oh, wow. So many things here. First, take the job. Honestly, if this is what you have worked for all of your life, this is a no brainer. It sounds like an amazing opportunity and they asked you to come back. You need to take that job! Secondly, if he doesn’t want to see a therapist, this isn’t going to work. You can lead a horse to water….he needs to want to work on it or it will make no impresion. I get the feelign that you are talking to a brick wall. I also can’t believe that he thinks that this is a good time to start a family. I’m absolutely shaking my head in disbelief over that one. I wish you the best of luck with this situation. I know you didn’t ask for advice, but I had a spare 2 cents and I decided to share 🙂

  2. Oh, I would take the job. There is no doubt about that. I think he’ll go to therapy, begrudgingly, but he’ll go. I’m just trying to give him the benefit of the doubt and not use these things against him. But, I’m also a pragmatist, so I do see these as warning flags already. And I’m always open to advice! Sometimes it’s hard to see the forest for the trees!

  3. My ex-husband was never gone for more than 18 hours at a time when any of our children were infants, but he was gone 18 hours every day. I was at home with the baby, and then with the child and baby, and then with 2 children and baby, etc (six kids total). The point came where I so desperately wanted OUT, but I couldn’t go because I couldn’t support myself plus all the kids while working blah-blah-blah. To make a long story short, trust me (and my post-divorce therapist)….if you already resent the sacrifices you are making and feel marginalized, a baby (or six) will NOT improve the situation!

  4. I absolutely agree with you, KL! That was one of the reasons I initially told him I wanted a divorce, because I didn’t want to bring a child into the current situation. I’m still giving him some time to see if we can move forward positively and can give me the relationship that I need and that he needs. My therapist and I talked about that yesterday… the difference between your needs in a relationship v/s expectations from your partner. It was a good discussion for me. I have a difficult time separating the two… as in I interpret his expectations as needs/non-negotiable, when in reality they aren’t. So, I’m still growing as a partner as well. But thank you so much for the feedback! It is so helpful to hear from those who’ve gone through similar things. I feel stronger because of the support and insights you guys provide.

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