I would like to get some unbiased feedback before my appointment with the lawyer tomorrow afternoon.
My husband and I have been married for 13 yrs (together for 16) and have a 14 yr old son. Our relationship has always been rocky, and I have never felt truly at peace and secure since we have been married. We were 19 yrs old when we got married and he promptly joined the Air Force. At our first base, everything was pretty normal for about two years. We fought about the usually household chores and him not being involved with caring for our son. But after I started my first job things got worse. He was CONSTANTLY on the computer and never did his fair share around the house or with our son even though I was working full time and taking care of a 2 yr old. I felt totally ignored, unloved, and overwhelmed. Then, I met someone at work and we had a emotional relationship for several months, which only became intimate one time. Of course, my husband found out--I felt horrible and tried to do everything I could to save our relationship. I quit my job and the school I was getting ready to start so I could prove to him that he was the one I wanted. Fast forward 7 months--an old female friend from back home contacted him and wanted to visit while she was in our local area. OK fine with me...we all went to dinner and that was that. BUT I had that nagging woman's intuition that something wasn't right. Yep, he kicked me and our son out of the house because he wanted to be with her. My son (2 1/2yrs) and I bounced around to different friend's houses for 2 weeks until he finally decided that he should stay with his family. That was 10 yrs ago and the chaos hasn't stopped since. Shortly after his affair with his old friend, he coerced me into an unwanted threesome with our neighbor's husband. There was no touching between them, just with me. I was suffering from extremely low self esteem and felt like I could win him back if I did what he wanted me to do. He was also chatting online with girls and I had found make-up in the back of my car that he tried to say belonged to me. NO it didn't!
The Air Force sent us to a new base about six months after the threesome. I was so happy to be able to try to start over in a new place. I told him how I felt about the threesome, and he promised it would never happen again and he was sorry.
His lack of attention to household responsibilities continued as did his lack of involvement with our son, who was now 4 yrs old. He was only involved if it was convenient. He would bend over backwards for friends but not for his wife and son. He stayed out drinking with his buddies, playing poker etc. I had secluded myself from making friends because I feared a repeat of what had happened with the neighbor previously. But after about 2 years, I let my guard down and we became friends with a couple. Just like a replay of our previous experience, he and the husband start sharing all of the intimate details of their romantic lives and it is almost like they were competing with each other. The other wife was a ditsy doormat so she thought their behavior was flattering. I found it degrading! One day the guys come to my house and say that my husband is going to take pictures of them having sex. I made it very clear that he was not going to do that, but they just laughed at me and went on their way. I assumed they were just trying to ruffle my feathers and nothing was really happening. I was wrong. My so called best friend (the wife) didn't even call me to make sure I knew what was going on first. I didn't find out the truth for several weeks after it happened and then they all acted like I had done something wrong because they were mad that I was upset by their behavior. Fast forward several months and they all decided that we should have sex in front of each other. I told my husband ABSOLUTELY not and stood my ground on that until one night when he practically forced me into it--I was at the end of my period and was still wearing a tampon, which he removed. Afterwards, I gathered myself and walked home. Once again, I was made out to be the one who was wrong because I was "being a stick in the mud." To end that chapter, it took nearly 3 yrs, more chaos, and another move to get that couple out of our lives.
Air Force move number 3 began in 2007. My dad passed away one month after moving to our new base so I was pretty much a zombie for 6 months. My husband also went on his first deployment to Iraq shortly after my dad past away. I felt like I could either sit around and feel sorry for myself, or I could get off my butt and go back to school. I was already in the mindset that if (and when) our marriage failed, I wanted to be able to take care of myself and our son. I started school in Jan 2008 and graduated with two Associate degrees in Dec 2011. On Christmas 2010, my husband bought a camera for ME, which quickly turned into his camera as soon as he decided to turn it into a part time job. On Feb 6, 2012, I found semi-nude and nude pictures he had been taking of models. I didn't confront him until Feb 14th because I had read his Facebook messages and knew he had another photo shoot scheduled for Feb 11th and it was going to have "naked all over the place." So I waited to get those photos and they weren't lying. They were the raunchiest photos he had taken thus far--Pure pornography. So after I confronted him, he made me feel guilty for "not paying attention to him for so long that he just didn't care anymore and was doing what ever he wanted to do." I had already scheduled an appt with a lawyer for Feb 16, 2012 but cancelled it to try marriage counseling first. We went to the counselor for a month and he blamed everything on me. He tried to make the counselor believe that I was an un-affectionate ice cube who never paid attention to him. I scheduled some private sessions with her so I could plead my case without being interrupted and she told me in a round about way to listen to my common sense regarding whether to stay with him or not. Also, I have shared some of our past with two close friends and they have told me not to stay with him either. The counselor said she has been in the profession for 17 yrs and our situation is "extreme."
I finally met with the lawyer on Mar 28, 2012 and she had the same reaction as the counselor. She has been practicing family law for 8 years and ours is extreme for her too. WOW! But now my husband is "a changed person." He watched the Fireproof movie and bought the Love Dare book so now he says he can become the husband and father he should have been for 13 yrs. I'm afraid all of his new "changing" is giving our son false hope and will end up making me look like the devil to him. If he sees dad trying to be nice and helpful and then I still leave, what is that going to make him think of me? My appointment with the lawyer tomorrow is to look over the final divorce decree paperwork before it is filed with the court. I am paying for the divorce, too.
So I guess my question is, would any of you consider giving him ANOTHER chance based on the details I have shared here? The ONLY reason I would even consider the thought again is because of our son. And, I am set to start my Bachelor's degree work in August, and I don't want to have to quit school to work full time.
I don't have any family I could stay with because I am the high achiever in the family and don't want my son around negative influences. And FYI, my husbands family is taking his side--shocker! They have the view that once you are married you stay married and just learn to forgive.
All opinions are welcome.
Thanks for reading