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Dear Bossip,

My husband’s co-worker and my co-worker were very good friends so they figured hook us up, thus we married two years after that in 1996.

Now, we have had our share of issues while we dated, including trust. Yes, it was me who had other men in my life, but at the time my husband and I weren’t a couple. We were kicking it, not even sexually involved, so we had no ties to each other. So, in his mind I was cheating on him, but the truth of the matter is I was committed to him, but I was still “keeping my options open.”

I think I married him because he was the only one moving fast enough, and, quite honestly, it seemed to be the best way for me to move out of my parent’s home. See, I was staying with them with my then youngest daughter. When I wanted to move out and be on my own with my daughter, my parents gave me such a hard way to go. In fact, they said if I move out then they would no longer help me with my daughter, in terms of babysitting.

At that time, I had no one else because I had just moved to the new area. So, the ONLY way for me to move out was to get married, and I did. Yes, that’s MY fault. Now, do I love my husband, YES. We love to watch sports together, watch comedies and stuff, but, Am I IN LOVE with him, Absolutely NOT! I haven’t been in love with him for years. I don’t know if I was ever truly in-love with him. Yep, my fault there too.

He blames me for EVERYTHING, from our cars being repossessed (which at time I wasn’t working) to typical teenager issues with my oldest child. He even told our daughter, who at the time was 15 years old, that she couldn’t live with us anymore and so MY MOTHER kept her. Remember, this child is NOT biologically his, but he’s been in her life since she was 8 years old (my ex is NO where involved at all).

That hurt me because we have our other children who wondered why she was staying at grandma’s house and not at home with us. Plus, he really didn’t ask me what we should do. He took it upon himself to do this because he’s the HEAD of the household (boy, do I hear that much too often). She moved back in after high school graduation, and things are ok. But, there are still a lot of rough spots. I vowed that she will never be put in that situation again. Please understand, she was a mess but she was also a child. He’s supposed to be the adult. He has said to me not too long ago if she doesn’t do this and that then she’s out of here. I calmly told him, if she leaves then I leave too. I didn’t hear another word out of him regarding that.

He cusses at me whenever there is a heated discussion, and the reason is: I “tick” him off or drove him to that point. Sounds like a classic form of abuse. I realized that he is very insecure.  He is jealous of me and anyone who is close to me. Yes, this includes my family, church family, friends, HIS family (yes, I’m cool with the in-laws).

He always talks about how fine he is for his age (49 years old), and any woman would want him.  I am 39 years old. He’ll come home from church and tell me how many women complimented him and the men would say they wish they had his “SWAG!”  Sorry to say, but he’s not that tall, try 5’ 6”.  He is nice looking, but still. Side bar: I am wife number 3. The first two were foul, according to him.

He will constantly say things like, if you don’t want me I can go elsewhere anytime for a piece of a**. Then, he will pause and say, so can you!  HUH?!  I’m like why do you constantly say things that are disrespectful to me. He says I start it, i.e. it’s MY fault.

He even compared me to ‘some woman,’ stating I am a nasty woman when it comes to my house, (just so you know, this stems from me not spending my Saturdays spring cleaning my entire house. I stated that we take a room or two to truly clean, but the house itself IS clean.)

Yet, he is real quick to accuse me of having other men and that I am having relations with men. Heck, he even accused me of being a lesbian. As man crazy as I am! NO way on this side. I would EVER be a lesbian. I love MEN, especially BLACK Men.

I remember a time he went all the way to his parents’ home in Montgomery, AL to work around their house, including mowing the lawn, when our yard needed assistance. So, YES, I ended up mowing my lawn. We live in the Northeast suburbs of Atlanta.

Now, I have been tempted to be involved with someone else, although I haven’t. Men have called me and it has been refreshing to talk to these men, but again, I haven’t done anything physical or even had lunch or dinner with any of them. But, I think about one man in particular and wonder what if!  I don’t like that for several reasons.

I also like to spend money, but I make sure the bills are paid. I have been working two jobs ever since 2005, and I even have a third job as a consultant. However, he has always had his one job.  I have to keep up with everything. When things are good, he will take the credit because he’s the HEAD of the household. But, when things go downhill, he has NO problem asking me how to fix the problem, or, I just take the fall because again he does NOTHING wrong and as the HEAD of the house he can do that.

I am at my wits end.  I think I am staying with him because it’s been so long and as the late great Johnnie Taylor song says, “It’s cheaper to keep her,” (or him in this case). I want to feel loved and love him and be in love. That’s not happening with him. Thanks for reading this and provide your thoughts. – Not In Love

Dear Ms. Not In Love,

So, you married a man to get out of your parents house, and, because he was the only man who moved fast enough to get you down the aisle? Therefore, you said yes, jumped in head first, and now you’ve spent the past 18 years trying to figure out if you did the right thing? HUH??!?!

I don’t get this. I seriously don’t understand why you would be married to someone you’re not in love with. What is the benefit? What are you gaining? He hasn’t added anything to you, or your situation. He hasn’t upgraded you, nor, have you said anything positive about him or the marriage. So, again, why are you there if you are not in love?

You mentioned you have a church family, therefore, I assume you have a pastor, or spiritual advisor in your life. Why have you not gone to them and ask for marital counseling? Why have you not arranged to speak with them about the challenges in your marriage, since your husband continues to throw up that he is the head of the household, and I’m sure he has learned that from the church? I’m sure your pastor would be able to shed some light, and provide spiritual guidance on your marriage.

But, ma’am, what is the real underlying issue here? You mentioned it has become convenient to be married, but convenient for whom? You are miserable, unhappy, and have lost yourself to someone you don’t want to be with. After 18 years you are still beating yourself up over your poor choice, and quick decision to marry a man just so you could move out of your parent’s home. You were hoping that by marrying him that you would fall in love. That you would learn to love him, and things would change. You hoped and prayed that things would change, and you would have the perfect marriage.

Welp, I guess that didn’t work, huh?

So, either you become real with yourself, and real with your husband and tell him the truth, or you stay miserable, unhappy, and watch yourself wither away in an unsatisfied, and unloved marriage. You’ve given this marriage 18 years of your life. And, in 18 years you did not fall in love. You are not happy. He doesn’t bring you joy, or add to your joy. He doesn’t make feel good, feel loved, or feel wanted and needed. You’re both miserable angry people fighting and desiring love and attention. Yes, he wants to feel loved and wanted just like you do, and he realizes that you are not giving it to him. Trust me, he knows that you don’t love him. He can feel it.

And, that is he throws it up in your face that any other woman would be glad to have him. He tells you that he can go get some a**, or how women compliment him, and he looks good for his age. He wants to be desired and loved by you. He wants to make you feel jealous because he knows you don’t want him. His ego is hurting, and the only way to fuel his pride is to seek compliments from others outside of his marriage.

It also explains why he is taking it out on your daughter. He is upset and hurt by you, and because she is your child, not his biological child, he directs his insults, anger, and pain toward her. He wants to hurt you and her.

You can spend another 18 years of going through this if you want. But, we all know that you want out. You want a man who is going to love you, and you love him. You want a man who is going to make you feel good, desire you, and celebrate you. You want a man who is going to be your everything, and you are his everything. You don’t want to have to constantly fight, argue, bicker, and take the abuse from a man who doesn’t respect you, or cherishes you.

Come clean. Be honest and communicate with your husband the truth. Let it go. Release the unsettling truth that you’ve been holding on to for 18 years. Let go of the weight, and anchor of this burden that has been wearing you down, making you miserable, and unhappy. Tell your husband: “I am not happy. I am not in love with you. I love you as a person, as a man who has been here for 18 years, and as a man who has cared for my children, and our children. But, I am not in love with you. I have not been in love with you for a long time. And, to be honest with you, I know you are not happy, and not in love with me either. We have become comfortable with one another, and it has not gotten us anywhere. I don’t want to spend the next 18 years, 18 months, 18 days, or 18 hours fighting with you, or pretending this is something it isn’t. This is tiring, draining, and unfulfilling. I want to feel loved, and be loved. And, it is my desire to have that, and I want you to have that as well. So, let us move on from one another, and we both find happiness, peace, solace, joy, and love. We deserve it.” – Terrance Dean

Hey Bossip Fam, what do you think?

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Also, e-mail all your questions Terrance Deanloveandrelationships@bossip.com

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Make sure to order my books Mogul: A Novel (Atria Books – June 2011; $15); Hiding In Hip Hop (Atria Books – June 2008); and Straight From Your Gay Best Friend – The Straight Up Truth About Relationships, Love, And Having A Fabulous Life (Agate/Bolden Books – November 2010; $15). They are available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon, click HERE!
     
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