Monday, July 04, 2005

The ultimatum that I couldn't take

This post is not pleasant. If you love Gary and don't want to read my rotten thoughts about him then you'd probably want to stop reading now.

Today was the day I could have change my life and didn't. I froze and couldn't continue. I hate myself right now. I hate myself for not standing up to him and calling him on his threats. A speeding ticket nonchalantly given to me by Gary is what held the key.

Him: "Oh yeah, I got a ticket on the way home last night." He says this as he is sitting in his truck with the door open, one foot on the running board, thumbing through some papers from his trip that he just got home from.

Incrediously I scream "what?! where?! oh that's just great"

Him: "Don't start, Sheri. Do you think I did this on purpose?"

Me: "Yes, I think you drive fast on purpose. I can't believe this. Our insurance rates were just going to go down in November from the one you got 2 years ago. Why can't you slow down? Why do you have to drive so fast?"

Him: "Look, drop it. I don't want to talk about it anymore." Passes me his cup of coffee. "hold this"

Me: "Gary, you can't just say 'Oh I got a ticket' and expect me to not say anything. We talked about this the last time you got one and our insurance couldn't be renewed. It's not fair that I can't say how I feel about things without you getting all pissed off. It's ok if YOU get pissed off but I can't"

Him: "We have insurance"

Me: "yes and we pay out the ass for it"

Him: "Do you want me to kick you in the face? Shut up about it....stop pissing in my ear about this!"

Me: "Yeah Gary, why don't you kick me in the face - that would be nice"

Him: "fucking asshole!" and he slaps the cup of coffee, which flips towards me and flies all over the front of me.
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I'm standing there not believing that he just did that. The man I've been married to for almost 22 years, who has never laid a finger on me, and now he slaps hot coffee in my face? In front of our daughter?! I feel myself beginning to really get angry, not caring if he does kick me in the face. Truthfully, I wish you would to end this fucking farce we live in. I tell Hannah to come with me we are leaving. "That's it" I'm thinking "I've had it. I am not spending one more minute with him. He has anger issues that he can't deal with and takes them out on me. He won't get himself help and he treats me like shit , tells me I'm the one with problems, and I continue to take it. What is wrong with me?" I go upstairs to change my shirt from the coffee and he follows me up there.

Him: "What are you doing?"

Me: "I'm changing and then Hannah and I are leaving. I don't know where we are going but I need to leave right now".

Him: "If you are ready to throw this marriage away over a cup of coffee, then go. But let me tell you one thing...if you walk out that are NEVER coming back. I mean NEVER and you know I'm not kidding." He's glaring at me. I think he's serious. The thoughts swirling in my head: What if I go and he doesn't want me back? What am I going to do? How can I take care of Hannah? Where's Mom going to go? What about my house? What about my cats, dog and fish? Whos' going to take care of them? Will he smash everything I own if I leave? Oh thank God we have not bought our plane tickets for vacation yet. WIll my dad take me in? Will my sister take me in? Where do I go? Maybe he's right. Maybe I bitch too much. That must be it. I'm a nag. It's all my fault. I'm a horrible person. I can't leave because I might want to come back and he won't let me. I guess I'd rather live here miserable than leave. Yes! that's it. I'll keep staying because he wants me too even though I'm miserable. He nevers treats other people like he does me. He's always nice to others. Well, he is nice most times but when he's not, I'm retarded, a nag, I piss n' moan about everything, I 'm stupid, I know nothing." Hannah is looking at me with question in her eyes.

Me: "Fine Gary. You win. I can't leave because you won't let me come back."

Him" "That's right. You're out forever. Now, let's go get some lunch."

Yeah, this is my life.


Tom said...

What a crappy day!

I was thinking about the anger management therapy piece. It might hel pfor both of you to go to counseling together. It may be the first step to getting him to attend anger management anyway.


Cheryl said...

Hi Sheri,

I think when things like this happen with the one we are supposed to love the most and whom we think loves us the most it is a complete and utter shock. We are paralyzed by a fear of "who did I marry"..."I don't know him at all".

As you know from my site, I've had my share of problems with my husbnad this year...but we got through it.

I stood in the kitchen ready to dial 911 because he wouldn't give me my son. I called my parents instead and waited for them standing in the middle of street. When they arrived, I was crying demanding a divorce.

That was only a few months ago. We got through it. I thought it was the end forever.

The think you have to ask yourself is "Am I better off withouth him?" If the answer is yes, then you need to formulate a plan.

When I married him, I said I would never take the title of "ex-wife". I've tried hard to remember why I chose him. I put conditions on leaving...only if he hit me or cheated on me. Neither of these things have ever happened.

For me, I am not better off without him. We are not better off without him. I need to have a complete family. I cannot go it alone and do not want to.

I'm here to listen if you need a friend. I know how it feels to be you tonight.


Melody said...

No one deserves to be treated like that. I really hope that things get better for you, you deserve happiness as much as anyone else. You are a good person, a good mother, a good daughter, a good wife and most of all a good person...don't let anyone convince you otherwise. Hugs.

Sarah said...

Oh, Sheri...I am so sorry you are feeling this way. You are right...NObody deserves to be treated that way.
I think some sort of counseling would be beneficial, if Gary would agree to something like that.
If that is not an option, then make a plan, sweetie. Make a plan when things are calm and talk with friends and family and people you trust about it. If he has anger issues that are getting worse, then you have to be worried about your safety and the safety of your daughter.
Sorry to be blunt, but domestic violence is no joke. And belittling and cursing and making threats against you may not be physically hitting, but the effects are just as powerful.
Understand this, Sheri: You are worthwhile. You are a valuable human being and do not deserve to be treated like shit--EVER. I know you don't want to teach Hannah it is ok.
Please seek help, and if you ever want to vent or chat about it, do not hesitate to email me.
Hugs to you!!

Heather said...

I'm with Melody and Sarah. No one should be treated that way. You deserve to be treated like the valuable person that you are. Is this behavior gotten worse? Is counseling an option? Even leaving to go to your parents or something, if only for a few days, might open his eyes that this is serious and something needs to be done.


Sue said...

I'm crying right now, and yes I would take you in. Don't ever doubt that. I love you!

Sue said...

Oh, and I'd take Mom too.

Sandi said...

Don't worry about what other people would think. I knew Gary was an asshole when I was 10, and he hasn't changed. I know better than most about his past with his first wife, if it gets even close to that point then you need to RUN, not walk away.
Love you and Hannah probably a lot more than Gary, but then he is turning out just like Dad.
Booze problems run way back in our blood lines, and they do increase anger issues.

I am just glad I was willing to get help when I was younger, or I would be just like him.

I know he won't go to therapy, but I hope when he loses you and Hannah it will wake him up, and then you can work it out.

Love Ya Lots

Tammy said...

(((((((((((((((Sheri)))))))) what can I say that others haven't??? This is NOT your fault and no matter what you do, you don't deserve to be treated like that, and esp not in front of Hannah. His ultimatum was neither loving nor helpful to the situation. It wasn't reasonable at all. It was selfish.

I would make a plan in the calm of a new day. Start putting money aside but whatever you do, don't leave your house. Make him leave. And you do what is best for you and Hannah, no matter what. You don't have to live like this, sweetie. I am so not for divorce, and I do believe you are a ways from that even now, but when anger is the mode of life, there needs to be some separation to gain some perspective. For you, for Hannah and yes, even for Gary.

(((((hugs)))) to you, my friend. So sorry you are facing this. I wish you peace...

Chicka said...

I, too, have been where you are.

(((HUGS))) and statistics you don't want to hear, or are not ready to hear yet, are all I can offer.

You CAN do this. And you've just had offers from family to help. Take them up on it. Please.

Kim said...

Sheri, listen to your family. Listen to your friends. Listen to yourself. Fear is a slutty bitch. Don't let it rule you or prevent you from making decisions. You need to be happy first, in order to foster hapiness in life and in your daughter's life. Bullies understand one thing and one thing only, and that's that they can get away with ONLY WHAT YOU ALLOW THEM TO. Don't EVER believe that you deserve this, no matter how much nagging, complaining or evil thoughts you have. Don't EVER believe you are stupid or dumb, YOU AREN'T. Don't give ANYONE that kind of power over you. You are a good person and entitled to be happy... and you have friends.

Lauren said...

Sheri, sweetie, my heart just aches for you. I'm happy to read that you have the support of family -- both yours AND his. To me, that speaks volumes.

I've been in a similar pair of shoes to yours -- only I didn't have the responsibility of a child to consider. All I know is that it took me finding myself on the other side of the room - my head being bashed into a wall -- before I FINALLY decided to get out. I too, believed that he would never actually hit me.

Some people with anger management issues never cross the line to physical violence -- but it sounds as if Gary is dangerously close to crossing that line. Please take whatever precautions you can to keep yourself and Hannah safe. Sheri, I've heard those same threats -- I've said the same words to myself -- let me tell you that they're not true. You are smart and capable and talented and you have so much to offer the world. If Gary can't see that -- well, then it's sad for him.

I'm e-mailing you all of my phone numbers. I will drive across the state and get you myself if need be.

Please let me know if there's anything at all I can do for you.

Huge hugs,


Sleeping Mommy said...

Sheri, I don't have any advice to offer that hasn't already been offered, whether you want to hear the advice or not.

Please listen to your family. They love you. Listen to your friends, because they do to.

Take care of you and your daughter.

Sandi said...

PS. Mom says she has a frying pan just the right size to put a good dent in his damn head. LOL
She is also very sorry you have to go through this, shes does not know where he got it.
By the way, she also said that the speeding ticket was just proof of why she won't ride with you guys when you come down, but I do have a promise from her that next year she will go more places if I follow along behind in our own car.

Eileen said...

(((Sheri))) There's nothing I can say that your family and friends haven't already said.

You are a wonderful person and a great mom---you deserve better sweetie. Keeping you and Hannah in my prayers.


Anonymous said...


Can I suggest calling your local Woman's Shelter. They can help you formulate an escape plan for IF you ever need it. It doesn't mean you will use it, but you will feel better knowing you have it. It gives you a little power.

Only you can decide what is right for you, for Hannah, for the lesson's you want Hannah to learn.

My father was abusive, mainly verbal to us kids, but eventually physical to us too. His temper was horrendous.

I was grateful when my mom left as I didn't have to worry about saying the wrong thing anymore.

Many many hugs,

Anonymous said...

I'm a bona fide member of the 'Been There, Done That' club. Counseling, even for just you, will help. There are situations when staying for the child is most important, and then there are situations where divorce is the most important for the child. You can make sacrifices, but be sure that those sacrifices are leading to a greater good in the future. My prayers are with you, because no matter which way you go, it is tough. Small comfort, I know. The best I can say is to make a decision and then STICK WITH IT.

It can be done...I even did the Food Stamps, WIC, and Welfare thing for awhile after my divorce. It was tough, but I perservered and was able to eventually be in my own home, own my own car, etc. Just don't be wishy-washy.

Katherine said...

I'm thinking about you and Hannah. Big (((HUGS))) coming your way. There's nothing I can say that hasn't been said already. But I just want to remind you that we all care about you.

Marie said...


I just don't know what to say. I don't know how you feel, although I grew up in a household like that, to some extent.

I have no witty or valuable advice to give. All I have to say is you matter, no matter what anyone else may say to you. You are worth so much and have the right to be treated that way.

I'm saying a prayer for you and your daughter.

If you need to talk, feel free to email me.

Hang in there and God Bless,

Anonymous said...

Hi Sheri,

You didn't leave out of fear for what is unknown. Having a plan is great, for the next time, but what if the next time comes and you continue to wonder if this is "the hill you want to die on" (is this argument worth leaving). Gary giving you an ultimatum like that is unthinkable. And just because you didn't leave at that exact moment, that doesn't mean its over. Make your plan now. Follow through with it. If, and I mean IF, he agrees to go to counseling, should you ever consider going back. Who gives a damn if this person wants YOU back... the question should be, will you ever want HIM back!!

These are strong words, but please don't let Hannah grow up thinking this is the way its supposed to be. Show her, don't just tell her, that his behavior is unacceptable. It won't be easy, but you are a strong capable person. You WILL make it. And both you and Hannah will be better off for that.


Julie said...

Sheri, You DO NOT deserve to be treated like this. And why is it up to you to leave...KICK HIM OUT! You have a child to think about and pets to deal with. Stay right where you are and tell him he needs to leave for a while until he can learn to control his temper. Right now it's coffee in your face, what's next? I don't know you and I don't know him but I do know the type all too well. And pick yourself up and stop feeling aren't the one failing this marriage...he is. Ask him what the anger is all he angry with you and the way your marriage is going, or is there an underlying problem? Does he feel like his life is going nowhere?
And always remember that you are a good person and are entitiled to make mistakes. So is he, as long as he isn't stupid enough to repeat those mistakes. Hold your head high and don't EVER back down to him.
My heart is with you and I pray for you and your marriage. Hang in there and keep posting...we can all help you.

Beth in Michigan said...

Okay, wow, I just got here from someone else's blog, I don't remember who, I don't even know you and I want to know where you are so I can come kick your husband's ass! Sounds like you have some good support here, thank goodness for that. Be strong, stand up for yourself and KEEP YOUR HOUSE!!!

I just wanted to mention that when I have it on full screen your blog looks perfectly normal, when I have it on half screen, the way I usually do, it gets all bunchy. That is all.

Tatiana said...

Oh Sheri dearest, how I feel your pain right now.
I have been in a similar set up for the first time about 5 years ago, and I did let him win. I stayed because I had too many reasons to stay. Foreign country, no family, no friends, our 5 years old daughter, not a well paying job, etc. I thought I’d carry on living the way we do, I thought I was in fault here, bitching too much, complaining too much. And it carried on and on the way it was, until… his betrayal was just a last straw, nothing else.
Please seek help…
Love and strength to you, my friend.

LibrarianOnTheLoose said...

Sheri, you are NOT a nag or a horrible person. Listen to everybody who wrote before me. Consider takings steps that will let you be able to leave (or kick him out) if something like this happens again. I know it's hard but until you level the playing field he can continue to play "if you leave you can't come back" power games with you. And that ain't right! Anyway here's a big hug: ((((((((((((((((((SHERI))))))))))))
hang in there!

Beth said...

You came to my blog and I wanted to visit yours. I understand what you are going through. My husband had bouts of anger in his late 20's due to a chemical imbalance. I would have never believed in depression if I hadn't went through it with him. With the right medication, he was himself again ... loving and calm.

There are never easy answers. To say "leave" is so easy, but to do it just isn't. I relied on my husband financially. I was a SAHM so if you haven't been hit, try to find out what is happening because it sounds like your husband may be an untreated manic-depressive. They really have ANY responsibility for the things they do wrong.

It's just a thought. Obviously from all the replies, you are not alone!

melodyann said...

Sheri, I have so been where you are. My husband has never hurt me physically but the mental shit is enough. I am so sorry for all the shit that you go through. I want out so badly and I totally understand your fears about leaving. I share them. The only help I can offer is my friendship. If you ever want to talk or bitch or moan, email me, friend. You will find a willing ear and a dry shoulder.

I'm so glad you joined the Sister-hood.

And Kim is right, you are wonderful, not stupid at all, don't give him that power, just like she says. Just because he is an ass and an overbearing one at that, doesn't mean you have to accept his will.

Cindy said...


I know your post is a few days old, but I have been away for a while. It sounds like you might be getting to where you need to be.

Anger is a scary thing. I'm glad that you both are getting help.

*HUGS* to you. :)