Blindsided Wives of America Club

by Joan Oshatz on April 16, 2010 in A Bad Marriage Is Fattening

blindsided-in-love

I received a comment from a woman named Christy and here is what she wrote:

“I’ve started reading your blog. I understand completely. I’ve been with my husband for 13 years, and I’ve gained 50 pounds since our marriage 9 years ago. He is emotionally unavailable, passive aggressive, and nothing I do is ever good enough for him. Even when I was 145 pounds (5’9”) he would find things about my body to find fault with. You talked in one of your posts about red flags at the beginning. My red flags were that I wasn’t good enough for him then, and he was hesitant about getting married. That stuff doesn’t ever go away.”

“I eat to fill the void of love and to help deal with loneliness. My husband withholds sex as a way to get back at me. For what? I don’t know, I can tell when he is mad, but he doesn’t tell me what he is mad about. (That’s the passive aggressive stuff.)”

“As soon as the newness wears off, your husband will probably treat the new woman the same way he treated you. I’m not sure if that makes you feel better, but people don’t change. He was the problem, not you.”

“It’s helpful to know that there are people out there who feel the same way that I do. Thanks for your blog.”

I could identify with everything Christy wrote. In fact, I could have written the exact same comment that Christy wrote when I was married to my ex-husband Paul. She said, “My red flags were that I wasn’t good enough for him then, and he was hesitant about getting married.”

I remember Paul once telling me that he wasn’t going to marry me because I was “damaged goods.” When I asked him what he meant, he said, “You were married once before.”

Even now when I recall that conversation over thirty-five years later, I can feel a knot form in my stomach and I’m furious at Paul for referring to me as “damaged goods” because I had a short marriage when I was twenty-one years old that didn’t work out.

But here’s the thing, Christy is right when she said, “That stuff doesn’t go away.” When you ignore the red flags in your relationship they come back to haunt you. They always do. When the fantasy of what you thought your life was supposed to be like turns into a nightmare then you remember the red flags: He didn’t think I was good enough for him, and he was hesitant about getting married — or — he thought I was damaged goods.

If I could tell women just one thing to save them from the heartache that I went through it would be this: Don’t marry a man that’s not head over heels in love with you. If he’s hesitant in any way about marrying you, walk away. Because if you do marry him, I promise you that you will live to regret it.

If a man goes into a marriage not totally in love with the woman he’s marrying, then over the course of time he will start blaming her for everything that is wrong in their marriage. Instead of being his wife, the woman unwittingly becomes his scapegoat, and his discontent with her festers inside of him because he married a woman he wasn’t truly committed to. The truth is, he’s really upset with himself for marrying her, but instead of looking inwards at himself, he turns his emotions outwards and blames his wife for his unhappiness.

Christy wrote, “My husband withholds sex as a way to get back at me.” I actually lived twenty years in the trenches of the very type of marriage that Christy’s describing where my husband withheld sex from me. I learned from my marriage that when a husband withholds sex it’s because he’s angry with you — whether it’s justified or not doesn’t matter.

Here’s another red flag that most women miss in their marriage. Women assume that if their husband is withholding sex from them that their husband is not having sex either. I missed this red flag big time! Men might withhold having sex with their wives because they’re angry with them, but most married men do not become celibate just because they’re angry with their wives. They have sex with women that they’re not angry with. And when the wife finds out — well, she feels blindsided. Read my March 22, 2010 entry Sandra Bullock Blindsided By Jesse James.

Speaking about being blindsided, when I wrote about Sandra Bullock being blindsided by Jesse James the number of people who read my blog stunned me. It seems like I was blindsided by my own creativity.

I thought people would know that I was only kidding when I welcomed Sandra Bullock into the Blindsided Wives of America Club — but apparently some people thought there really was such a club, because the top search on my website was the Blindsided Wives of America Club.

Then shortly after that actress Garcelle Beauvais was blindsided by her husband Mike Nilon — and Ginny Barber, who is eight months pregnant with twins, was blindsided by her husband Tiki Barber.

With all these women being blindsided by their husbands it got me thinking, “Maybe there really is a need for a Blindsided Wives of America Club.” The Blindsided Wives of America Club has just been introduced online. The website is: Blindsided Wives Club (www.blindsidedwivesclub.com)

The Blindsided Wives of America Club is going to be a supportive blog where women who have been blindsided by their husbands or significant other can leave comments sharing their own thoughts and experiences. Hopefully some insightful dialogue will ensue among the comments. Guest bloggers who want to write about their own experience of being blindsided or have advice that they would like to offer will be welcomed to write a guest post. If anyone wants to write a guest post they can e-mail: blindsidedwivesclub@gmail.com. Guest posts will be published upon approval. Please check out this new blog.

Now for everyone who has been reading my blog A Bad Marriage Is Fattening — please know that I am going to continue writing this blog.

I’d like to close with some thoughts on Christy’s comment. I walked in Christy’s shoes for twenty years in my own unhappy marriage. No woman should have to live in the emotional pain that being married to a man who doesn’t truly love you brings. Yet women do it all the time because they feel trapped. They think circumstances are forcing them to stay in an unhappy marriage. I understand the circumstances that force a woman to stay in an unhappy marriage. My circumstance for staying in my unhappy marriage was that I feared the unknown more than I feared the misery I was living in. Fear is a very compelling reason to keep one’s self trapped in an unhappy marriage.

I was forced to face my fear when I learned that I had been blindsided by my husband. That’s what it took for me to finally admit that my marriage and my whole life with my husband was a sham. Did I want to continue living a lie? Today I am so grateful that I was blindsided, because my life has changed for the better and I have finally become the independent woman I have always wanted to be.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

kathleen April 16, 2010 at 6:11 pm

MORE POWER TO YOU!!!

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Yay April 19, 2010 at 7:02 pm

Very interesting. I’m on the net, surfing and feeling quite sorry for myself due to just figuring out that my husband is withholding affection and sex from me PURPOSEFULLY and with full awareness of the hurt and misery it causes. Blindsided-no-more!

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Name withheld by commenter's request April 19, 2010 at 11:48 pm

Hi, I came across this site last week via a google search. Thank you for writing it. I can’t say I have been blindsided, although sometimes I do think that perhaps I have been. I used to be (forgive me, I am used to kg) 132 lbs. (I am 5’9″). And now, after 10 years of marriage, I am now…230 lbs. A big difference. I realised [British spelling for realized] last year that my husband was withholding affection from me, not necessarily sex. BUT…the sex we did have was really just for him to get relief really, it’s not that he would seek it from/with me. I realised after a while that he didn’t touch me, and it was as if I had a force field around me, and he could not come close. I realised that I disgusted him.

It is 4 months after out last separation, and our last vow to try again. But he’s reverting back to his old ways again.

He’s really nice to me now, and we get on famously. But he does not make me feel beautiful or desired, etc. I guess my red flags for this were there too, but there were so many other great things about him that, of course, I did not see these important ones.

I really don’t know what to do now. I have 2 young children, and my head tells me that I cannot stay in a marriage where my husband freely admits he is not attracted to me. All of this has given me an eating disorder and I have been visiting a psychologist to sort it all out for months now. Just last week he shook his head when I bought a pack of lollies to take on our week-long holiday to an island where there was no food!

Sigh. Life is complicated, isn’t it?

I don’t want to break up my family, but I don’t know if I can live my life desperately seeking my husband’s affections when it’s so few and far between. I have started this month a diary (just a small store bought one that fits in my purse). I am noting all the times we make love, he’s nice to me, says nice things, kisses me, etc. and all the times I do stuff as well. I just want a proper record to make the right decisions with. Every time I say, “You don’t say you love me,” I get back, “That’s bullshit, I say it all the time.” I know the truth, so it will be a different argument when I have it in black and white.

Gosh I am rambling. I just wanted to let you know that your blindsided club should be global, it’s not just Americans who are blindsided 🙂 I am in Australia.

All the best, and I will be watching for all your posts.

Kind regards.

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