Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Seething Resentment

Sybil and I are coming up on 18 years of marriage. These days, that is an accomplishment. I am always wondering how other couples deal with past hurts both big and small. Do they forgive and forget, or do they use the hurt as a bludgeon? Do they use these mistakes as a way to win the argument, or are the mistakes brought up as a way to show a pattern of behavior? Or is this bludgeon a way to change the other's behavior?

I don't have the answer to those questions.

In this blog, I have written about Sybil's behavior. I have not posted even half of the stuff that goes on. "Mommy Dearest" comes to mind. Very similar behavior at times. At other times, she is nothing like that, hence the moniker of Sybil.

My question in this post is about the statute of limitations. I will be the first to say that I have made two huge errors in my marriage. They both were business decisions that were extraordinarily bad. One sprang from my pride, and one sprang from my not wanting to "upset the apple cart". I'm not talking about infidelity or anything that big. No, I am talking about two times that I failed to listen to Sybil and got bitten for it. I have admitted to my poor decisions. I wish I could go back in time and undo everything that has been done. I cannot. I can only move forward and try to learn from them.

So what is the statute of limitations? When am I off of probation? Whenever a disagreement comes about, Sybil uses these two issues to undermine my position. Her resentment and even anger towards me is palpable, yet despite my best efforts, she will not forgive me. She says she does, but why bring these issues up at every turn? That tells me that she does not forgive me.

Between these decisions and Sybil's demeanor towards me, my self-confidence is at an all time low. Sybil has always questioned everything I have done and sought ways to control my behavior (I don't say the right thing, don't act the right way, etc.). With new ammunition, she is able to step up the assault on me. If she resents me so much, why not just do us both a favor and leave? Stubbornness. Sybil is stubborn (in fairness, I am stubborn also). Leaving would admit defeat. That cannot happen.

Although Sybil feels that everything wrong in her life is because of me, she will have to be the one to get over it. I cannot make her. She will have to be the one to either "fish or cut bait". Either way the resentment will end.