Thursday, December 13, 2012

I Like to Abuse Myself

Apparently, verbal abuse I receive from Sybil is all my fault.  If only I had (fill in the blank), I would not have forced Sybil to say mean and awful things to me.

On December 10, 2012, Sybil said, "I have to work with stupid."  She was referring to me.  When she said this statement, I had nearly completed closing of the day at our she requested I do.  Apparently, she did not mean for me to actually complete the closing...just get it ready to be complete.  Since she wasn't ready, she totally freaked out, yelled at me, and then told the kids that reason we have to work late is because, "I have to work with stupid."

Today, things are at a standstill.  I have told Sybil that her behavior was unacceptable, that she was abusive to me in front our children, and that she went beyond the boundary.  Throughout all of this she maintains that her comment was made because of what I did.  If I had understood that she didn't mean for me to totally close out the day...only get it ready to be closed out, then she would never have said that.  Basically, it is all of my fault.

Do I think verbal abuse is on the same plane as physical?  No.  Physical abuse can lead to permanent injuries and even death, so there is no way they are on the same plane.  However, years of verbal abuse lead to other problems.

It doesn't matter, really.  What matters is that Sybil feels that she can talk to me in any way she wants at any time she wants.  While I understand people lose their cool which causes them to say and do things they would not normally do, people must at least be apologetic.  No apology is forthcoming because it is all of my fault.

I think that when the youngest son leaves home that will be that.  That will be in less that 5 years.

Monday, October 15, 2012


This article published in New Zealand gives the briefest of glimpses into modern marriage.  It barely scratches the surface of what modern husbands have to look forward to.  However small, this article is a step into the right direction.  Sadly, few men will admit to the veracity of the article and fewer women want to admit to the possibility of this reality existing (see my last post about solipsism).

Is it any wonder that the birthrate of the Western world is dropping?  Seriously, this really isn't news.

Hat tip to Will S. at Patriactionary.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

I Was Wrong...

I am not the brightest bulb in the chandelier.  Sometimes it takes a long time for something to sink into my consciousness.  I seem to hold fast to my ideals in spite of mounting evidence to the contrary.  After reading this post (and the second definition), I see that I was wrong to think that Sybil is narcissistic.  I thought that because she was incapable of empathy towards others, especially those closest to her, that she must be a narcissus.  I struggled with definitions of her personality and with trying to find out what is wrong with her.  The answer was staring me in the face.  She is like all of the other women that I have known: she is immersed in solipsism.  

Narcissism deals with loving oneself more than anyone else.  There is no room for anyone else.  While this does kind of define Sybil, it is incomplete.  I do not think she has total self love.  Instead, I think there is an underlying loathing because she cannot handle imperfection.  Since all are imperfect, she cannot totally love herself.  No, she is engaged in solipsism.  The reason she has no empathy towards others is because she cannot fathom anything outside of herself.  Every thought, every conversation, every gesture, every nuanced bit of body language is seen through a lens of how it affects her.  Like tumblers in a lock, it clicked.  No wonder she gets so angry over the wrong facial expression, the wrong comment, the wrong gesture.  Sybil default setting is to believe everything is directed towards herself.  

The reason I say I'm not the brightest bulb is because I have been seeing this pattern of behavior my whole life.  I just was so into the "now" that I did not stop and think about what I was experiencing.  All of the women that I am closest to are completely enmeshed in solipsism.  My mother laying on the couch complaining about her life while dad worked 50 hours a week.  Girlfriends that played with my feelings.  Sybil...well we know about Sybil.  Sadly, it has taken 43 years for me to wake up.  I will not say that all women are this way.  I can only say that all of the women I have experience with are this way.  To say that women are better than men in empathy, in compromise, in a general live-and-let-live attitude has not been my experience.

The curtain has been rudely pulled back.  The wizard is just a sad, little man.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Why I Blog

I wish things were improving with Sybil and me.  Unfortunately, they are not.  Why am I still with her?  Like everything else in's complicated.  

First of all, I am not the brightest bulb in the chandelier.  Looking back, I see a pattern of behavior that was there from the beginning of our marriage.  Sybil is narcissistic.  Only her feelings matter.  In the last post I wrote about the camping thing.  As it turns out, Sybil only "felt" that I had ruined the kids on camping.  She never actually asked them.  Since how she feels about something trumps everyone else's, she feels totally justified in LYING about it.  When confronted, she will say that I provoked her (made an ugly face, talked to her with sarcasm, whatever).  I have endured 19 years of this because I thought that was what I supposed to do.  I thought that two adults come together and try to iron out their differences.  If unable, then they just work on accepting the other person for who they are.  I know, I know...I'm pretty dumb.  Sadly, we all see the world through our own prism.  It's hard to really see the world for what it is.

Secondly, we have kids.  I strongly believe that becoming a parent means you have to set aside one's unhappiness to take care of one's kids.  The role of parents is to raise the kids.  That doesn't mean in separate houses.  However, I don't think I would have gone through all of this if we didn't have kids.

Thirdly, I am a Christian.  I take it to heart that God hates divorce.  The only reason for divorce is adultery.  Not because I am unhappy.

The reason I started this blog was to cope with being married to Sybil (Sybil may have a different take on things.  She can start her own blog).  It seemed that I was losing my mind.  I could not believe a rational adult could behave this way.  Of course, that assumes she is rational.  So, at first I started this blog as a catharsis.  Now the blog has become an actual log.  I am logging my situation, if divorce comes up.  This blog is a means to protect myself as I am able.  Although I will not file for divorce because of the reasons I have listed (being dumb is probably primary), I would not put it past Sybil.  It all depends on her FEELINGS.  That is the metric I am measured.  Since her feelings are always in a state of flux, I will always be short.

I appreciate those that still read my blog.  I appreciate even more those that comment.  I know what my choices are.  I have always known.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


What to do when a couple is at a stalemate?  That is where Sybil and I are now.  Neither wants to budge about the latest explosion.  Frankly, I'm too tired of the whole drama queen act.  The toll it has taken on me emotionally has reached its limit.

How did this come to pass?  Like everything else it is my fault (at least in Sybil's eyes).  On Sunday we finished moving Son #1 into his dorm room.  It was getting late, he had stuff to do, and we have to be at our office early the next day.  We stopped at a fast food place for a quick bite before the drive home.  We had a pleasant time.  Chit-Chatting about stuff: first kid in college and all of the stuff that goes along with that.  Sybil complimented me on my being laid back about having to drive to the college, again, to finish with the room set-up.  I say "again" because we were there on Saturday.  Sybil did not like how the room was arranged, so we drove back there on Sunday.  No biggee to me.  Anyway, we gas up the car and get on the interstate to go home.  It's getting late, and I am driving above the speed limit.  I was doing around 80 mph (speed limit is 70).  This was the same speed I used to drive to our destination earlier, and I was driving the same speed back home.  No biggee.  Or I thought.  As we get closer to the medium sized city that close to our town, I have to slow down because of being cut off by another car.  I move around the car and put my cruise control back on.  Since we had slowed considerably, the car shifted to a lower gear causing the engine to rev at a higher RPM.  After passing the offending car, I moved back to our lane (here the speed limit was 65).  Sybil heard the engine noise and said that I am driving to fast and asked me to slow down.  I did not say anything, but I did make a face.  She asked me what the face was about, and I told her that it was for her nagging commentS.  Oooh, it's on.

First of all, Sybil becomes angry at me for saying commentS.  She only made one commenT.  Secondly, I was rude for making a face about her commenT.  She has a right to express herself and make a commenT about something that may affect her (driving too fast leading to death and/or dismemberment).  I tell her it's no biggee.  Wrong.  It is a biggee for someone with all of those speeding tickets.  WHAT?  I think to myself.  I ask her how many speeding tickets have I gotten in the last 10 years?  She says 4 or 5.  I inform her that I got ONE speeding ticket.  I ask her how many has she gotten?  She says it doesn't matter.  I push the issue.  We agree that she had ONE, also.  It still means that I was rude for making a face and stating that she made nagging commentS.  Fine.  I apologize, if I was rude and for saying commentS instead of commenT (she did only make one comment).  She rejects my apology.

We continue along this vein for awhile.  Then Sybil drops the bombshell: I not know how to compromise.  Actually, my lack of being able to compromise has led to the kids hating to go camping.  WHAT?  I think to myself.  There is a back story that is too long to get into.  Suffice it to say that I wanted to go camping this Labor Day weekend but cancelled it due to campground conditions.  It was difficult for me.  I struggled with it, but I DID MAKE THE CALL.  Anyway, WTF is going on?  She brought our kids into our argument.  Also, she totally contradicted herself.  It was just about two hours earlier when she was complimenting me on being so understanding and, oh I don't know, compromising.  I point out her cognitive dissonance.  Big mistake I know.  I couldn't help it.  She informs me that was to make me feel better but she didn't really mean it.  My last words on the subject was "I can't argue with that logic" and I left the room.

We haven't really spoken since.  Sybil's narcissism and inability to be a fully mature adult is astounding.    My mistake is thinking I am dealing with a rational, fair-minded individual.  It is my fault for not remembering who I am dealing with.  I will never get a rational, fair-minded response from Sybil when it has anything to do with me.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Joining the world of Twitter

Well...I'm entering the world of Twitter.  I kind of find it a waste of time, but I think Tweeting Sybil's rantings may be enjoying.  For me anyway.  Ha.  For those that care (both of you), it may provide some fun and take your mind off of your problems.  So look at the sidebar.  I hope to update when able.  Since we are moving our older son into college this weekend, I know there will be something to Tweet about.

Stay tuned.

Monday, August 06, 2012

Personality Disorders

Over the last few posts many have suggested that Sybil has Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) or Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).  First of all, I am not trained in either psychiatry or psychology.  Therefore, I cannot definitively say whether or not Sybil suffers from NPD or BPD.  May be Sybil is just Sybil?

According to PubMed Health NPD "is a condition in which people have an inflated sense of self-importance and an extreme preoccupation with themselves."  The article goes on to list a multitude of symptoms.  In the article, Sybil does not really fit into that list, except with "react to criticism with rage, shame, or humiliation", "need constant attention or admiration" (at least the constant attention part), and "disregard the feelings of others (namely mine), and have little ability to feel empathy."  Sybil may have "unreasonable expectations of favorable treatment".  That one is less sure.  Therefore of the 10 symptoms listed, Sybil has, possibly, four.

Again, according to PubMed Health BPD is a condition in which people have long-term patterns of unstable or turbulent emotions, such as feelings about themselves and others.  This condition has the hallmark of shifting perceptions of others.  Much more emotional turmoil.  Other symptoms that Sybil has are "frequent displays of inappropriate anger" and "intolerance of being alone (of which this has greatly improved over the years)".  The shifting emotions thing is a big red flag for me.  I call her "Sybil" in this blog for a reason.

After studying both of these conditions, it is possible that Sybil has a bit of both.  There are times she has definite NPD: only worries about time when it affects her, not taking account anyone else's feelings, wanting to be pampered, yet not pampering others.  There are times she shows herself to BPD: fluctuating emotions, shifting perceptions of me.  After many months of contemplation, I believe that Sybil has traits for both conditions.  I doubt that she would be diagnosed with either, or she may be diagnosed with a mild form.  The problem with both of these conditions is that it is hard for someone to be diagnosed and seek help.

It doesn't really matter if Sybil has NPD or BPD.  Maybe she's just batshit crazy?!?  At the end of the day, I have to learn coping mechanisms.  Fortunately, the kids get to leave.  I often wonder if they will ever come back to visit.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Awww...Wedded Bliss

Had to take a road trip with Sybil this past weekend.  There's nothing I dread more.  Naturally, we got into it.  

A little back story here: we recently bought a car that has an adaptive cruise control.  It automatically slows the car, when behind a slower vehicle.  I love it.

Anyway, we hit a rain storm on the interstate.  Everyone is slowing down.  Until that moment, I was going about 78 mph.  When the car in front began slowing down to the huge downpour, the car automatically slowed to match it.  We slowed to around 55 mph.  The whole time the cruise control was on.  It functioned as it should by slowing the car.  I was aware of what the car in front and the vehicles to the side and back where doing at all times. My foot was poised over the brake to disengage the cruise control, if needed.  Eventually, it rained so hard our car could not keep the adaptive cruise control going and turned it off.  No big deal.  I took over and maintained proper space distancing.  We made it through unscathed.

When the rain stopped and the sun was shining, Sybil decided it was time.  She noticed that I did not turn off the cruise control.  A big discussion ensued.  I informed her that I was in total control the whole time.  I could turn off the cruise control in less than a blink of an eye.  It didn't matter.  "Would I be ok with our children driving this way?" she asked.  Since our kids are 18, 15, and 13 I said "no".  I have way more experience driving in these conditions.  It didn't matter.  Naturally, we went back and forth.  I did not agree with Sybil's premise that I should have turned of the cruise control immediately.  And then Sybil said, "That's why you're a jerk!"

I will be the first to admit that I did not take that well.  I shot back, "That's why you're a controlling bitch!"  I told her that having a debate about my driving is one thing but taking it to a personal level is out of bounds.  I asked why she felt that she should do that and her response was I made her do it by not admitting her point.  I thought, "Wow!  Isn't that what an abuser says to the abusee?"

It's my fault that she had to bring the discussion to a higher level.  If only I had listened to her wise counsel, I would not have made her call be an epithet.  Sad.  I didn't handle it well either.  I apologized for my language (I didn't say she wasn't a controlling bitch, though).  I said I should have used other words.  I'm still waiting for my apology.  Still waiting....Bueller...Bueller.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Not Much Has Changed

Digger is back to posting.  He's got two posts in 6 weeks.  That's a lot.  Sadly, like me, his situation hasn't really changed.

As I stroll around the blogosphere, I read many situations similar to Digger's and mine.  Either the wife is totally disengaged from the marriage and offers none of the physical side of it, or the wife is a harpy from hell that thrives on drama, any drama, and sucks her stupid husband into it.

I wrote this post back in 2005.  In it, I start the process of detailing why marriage is a not a great idea for men.  Sadly, my attitude hasn't really changed much.  It's all so depressing.  I don't think anyone really has a Great marriage but the lucky ones have a Pretty Good marriage.  Eventually, most come to the conclusion that we prefer the devil we know to the devil we don't know.

That's the main reason I slacked off on posting.  It seems so pointless.  The blog started making me feel I "must,  like a whore, and unpack my heart with words".  Nothing was changing.  I seem unwilling to bring the situation to head.  That's the depressing part of it all.  As I look back, I see that I have created this situation.  I did not put boundaries on bad behavior, and I allowed Sybil to dictate terms to me.  I, actually, thought that Sybil was a rational being that would find a way to compromise to make everyone...maybe not happy...but everyone as happy as can be.  Nope.  That was not to be.  

Now, I'm almost 20 years into it; I've got 3 kids; a mortgage; etc.  Maybe I'm suffering from the "grass is greener" syndrome, but I doubt it.  If I hadn't gotten married, I would have had to work less and take on less stress because of my profession.  I would have more peace at home.  As it is, I have stress at the office and a huge, heaping helping at home.  The good news is I'll probably die young because of it.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

I Hate Anniversaries

Sybil and I celebrate our 19th anniversary this weekend.  I have come approach each anniversary with a sense  fear and loathing.  I should be excited.  Nineteen years is a long time in today's world for two people to live together.  Not many can say it.  It should be a time of celebration.  However, Sybil can be a buzzkill like no one else.

I assume that most people have anniversaries that are filled with joy and laughter.  A day of celebration.  Not us.  Sybil always feels a need to ruin it by dispensing with drama.  This one was no exception.  We had to argue about things that I thought were resolved.  Nopey.  We had to regurgitate past incidents like last night's expired milk.  I blame myself, really.  Sybil manages to suck me into her drama.  It is only after the fact that I notice.  She plays on my emotions and keeps me off balance.  It's truly remarkable.  I have to learn to be in control and not let her pettiness become larger than life.

So, true to form, this anniversary was horrible.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The End is Nigh?

Well, as the title should reveal the end is nigh for Sybil and my marriage.  At least that is what she has said.  We really haven't spoken about our marriage (or anything else) in over a week.  She seems quite willing to go Hiroshima and nuke our family.  What prompted such a dramatic action?  That's what this blog is for: a web log of our dynamic.

Last weekend, my parents were in for the weekend to celebrate my birthday.  That Saturday morning Sybil and I had to run to the office before going to Largish City close by to Son #1 play trumpet.  Our plan was to bring my parents along, also.  Anyway, as we were driving back to the house to begin our journey, we came upon a guy jogging down the road.  The road we were on has no shoulder whatsoever.  He was on the road side of the white line.  I noticed that as we came closer there would be hill coming up and there was no way to know if another car would crest the hill in the opposite direction.  This posed a bit of a conundrum: how to get past the driver and deal with the hill and the possibility of oncoming traffic.  I mumbled, "crud" under my breath.  Sybil said, "What?!?"  It was not quite yelling but was, definitely, not conversation tone.  In the moment of stress (caused by both the jogger and Sybil's demeanor), I said, "What do mean 'What'?  Can't you see the jogger and the hill?  What if another car hit us head on as I'm trying to not hit the jogger?"  I'm sure my tone was...sharpish.  The words I used (and possibly tone) caused Sybil to get very angry.  She said I was rude to which I said that the words were not rude it may have sounded that way due to a moment of stress.  This continued for less than 5 minutes on the way to my house.

Meanwhile, my parents are anxious to go see their grandson.  As we pull up to the house, I see them and my other two children standing outside waiting for us.  By this time Sybil is in one of her rages.  She storms out of the car, doesn't say anything to anyone, and goes inside.  Judging by the raised eyebrows of my parents, I'd say they knew that something was up.  I go inside to try talking her down.

Inside the house, she starts yelling at me for my rude behavior.  Now she has decided that we can go without her.  Basically, being her normal self.  I say that I did not mean for my comment to be rude.  I apologize  for it, but it was said in a moment of stress.  Sybil doesn't care and continues to say it's too late. She's not going.  This ten minute "discussion" eats up valuable time.  Everyone is still outside wondering what is the deal.  I finally talk Sybil down enough to get her in the car.  We drive to Largish City just in time to miss the performance.

As we are standing there, I'm still not in a good state of mind and Sybil is not in a good state of mind.  We kind of stand there looking at each other and elsewhere not saying anything to each other.  I'm thinking I've apologized and everything should be good.  Later, I will find out how wrong I was.  Anyway, Sybil wonders off to look at some shops are located in the area.  My parents and other kids wonder off to do their thing.  I'm left standing there by myself.

On the way home, I have to get fuel.  Our car is a diesel and requires a certain kind of diesel that was hard to get, when we first purchased the car.  However, that was five years ago.  Everywhere has the correct diesel.  I pull into a certain gas station that we had a problem getting diesel before.  Sybil starts yelling at me (in front of my parents and other 2 kids) to go to the one across the street.  I calmly explain that the placard indicates the correct diesel is sold there now.  Sybil is not having it.  We MUST continue to gas station across the street.  Finally, I say fine we'll go.  Sybil says that she told me before ever turning in to go to the other one but I didn't listen (that is possible...more likely she wasn't making herself clear).  Finally, we get the correct diesel and go home.  Sybil promptly marches to her room without a word to anyone.  My parents are wondering what just happened.  Very uncomfortable for me.

Finally, everyone goes to bed to conclude my parents visit.  They ask us not to try to get up to see them off.  They planned to leave very early.  I say good night and safe trip.  I go to bed.  Sybil is still awake.  I say that I am not happy with how she acted in front of my parents.  She really showed her "ass".  Instead of feeling remorse or anything, she says that she is tired of the act.  She pointed out that I have done the same before in front of her family.  I guess this excuses her behavior.  To tell the truth, we have had two blow-ups in front of her family.  I did apologize to her at the end (to date she has never apologized for her actions in front of my family).  We begin our long conversation (it takes over two hours).  Sybil contends that I was being abusive in the car, when I made the rude comment about the jogger and the hill.  I acted like an "asshole".  (Aside: I guess verbal abuse only means anything but name calling).  I was a jerk for not talking after we arrived at the Largish City.  It's my fault things escalated to the boiling point.  I should have listened better about the fuel.    We, finally, go to sleep sometime after 1:00 am.

The next day we have a five hour long continuation from the night before.  We had made plans to do some work at the office and run some errands, but these plans had to be delayed to have our talk.  In the car ride to Large Office Supply Box Store, Sybil continues the conversation.  By my count, the conversation lasted about twelve hours total.  In the Large Office Supply Box Store parking lot, we are still at it.  I'm trying to diffuse the situation, but Sybil is not having it.  Finally, she says that she doesn't think we should go on.  I say to her to be careful of starting down that path.  I tell her that starting down that path there will be no return.  She continues saying that it is pointless to continue the marriage.

This took place over a week ago.  While Sybil has not come out and said she wants a divorce, she hasn't come out and said anything is ok.  For my part, I'm feeling kind of numb about it.  When I weigh the pros and cons of divorce, I can say that the cons of staying together outweigh the pros.  Sybil has many negatives.  However, she is the mother of children and I made a promise.  Those are the two things that are keeping me here.  If she demanded a divorce and asked me to move out, I already have planned on what to take.  It amounts to very little.

Thursday, February 16, 2012


I felt moved to post another thought/situation. For those that are keeping up with this blog (both of eh), you know that Sybil's and my marriage is contentious to say the least. It has not been easy.

I have been grappling with temptation. What causes temptation? Does temptation just spring up out of nowhere, or is it nurtured and allowed to grow? We are all tempted in our lives. It is how we deal with the temptation that defines our character. Jesus was tested for 40 days and nights even with kingdoms of the earth. He prevailed. Humans, however, are not the son of God. We often times fail our tests with temptation.

What is my temptation? With the power of the internet, I have been able to track down an ex-girlfriend. I have not spoken to nor even seen her in 20 years. Using a social website, I was able to see a picture of her and her husband. She looks happy, and I am happy for her. However, the pangs of "what may have been" remain. That is my real problem. It isn't that I want to radically alter my life and hers by reaching out and contacting her. What is really going on is my disillusionment of my own life. I have chronicled it here.

As I have noodled this temptation in my mind, I came to the realization that I created my life. I can complain about Sybil and my predicament. However, I am solely responsible. I could have altered things between Sybil and me a long time ago. I didn't for various reasons (excuses?). Sybil and I are not in a good place. This leaves us open to temptation.