As I sit down to write this, I am still asking myself the question – when is enough – enough?
I have been involved with my wife for over 30 years. We started out as friends, which turned into romance and then marriage. We have been married for 24 years and have 4 children.
When I think about the girl I first met – I realize that she is the exact same person today and maybe that is our problem or more accurately my problem. As a teenager, she was fun and spontaneous. She could light up a room with her presence and had a big personality that people gravitated toward. She was beautiful and sexy and she knew it. I loved being with her and I felt lucky to have her. Of course there was another side to her – she could be dark and unreasonable when she didn’t get her way. However the good always outweighed the bad, and I truly thought that as she matured and had children that she would settle down. To say she had temper tantrums would be an understatement – but I really believed that time and maturity would prevail.
Unfortunately that didn’t happen.
In fact, her ability to compromise and think about anyone other than herself and her needs seems to have gotten worse as she has aged. There have been many times throughout our marriage that I have fantasized about Divorcing her but knew that I would never leave my children when they were young. I always felt that it would be hard for them if we divorced. I knew that they needed a calming force in their lives and a voice of reason. Something she would never be able to provide. Don’t get me wrong, she is a great mother and she loves our children. She just has difficulties putting anyones needs above her own. I have watched her with our daughters… I know that watching them become beautiful, confident women makes her proud but I see the jealousy of their youth in her eyes. She longs to be back at that stage of life and while I used to not be able to blame her – I now feel like it’s time for her to grow up.
I guess I am just tired- tired of trying to keep someone happy who will never be happy. Whatever I do isn’t enough – I don’t make enough, I don’t do enough, I don’t compliment her enough, she is always disappointed. It is so difficult to be in a relationship with someone who can never be completely fulfilled. In fact, it was my son who looked at me a couple of months ago and asked why she is always complaining and never satisfied. He saw it all so clearly and it was bizarre to have my feelings fully validated by one of my children.
So I am trying to figure it out. I do love her and I love our family. The thought of starting over scares me but the thought of staying with her does as well. I promised myself that once I turned 50 I would focus on myself and my happiness. As my 54th birthday approaches, I realize that time is moving quickly and I am still paralyzed.