My tale, as requested by TheBoy (WARNING - it's VERY long.... )
So, I'm not sure if this is the proper place for this, but it's where I'm putting it until I hear otherwise. *nod*
When I was 17 I met a boy. Well, a man, really. He's 7 years older than me, and, until I was 21, there was nothing but friendship. We would talk endlessly about anything, about everything. We were each others' sanctuary from our significant others, as well as the general world. When I was 20, I had some financial hardships and moved down to Chicago to recoup a little at my mother's. While I was there, this man, named Nate, finally ended his troubled relationship of four years. Maybe two weeks later, while talking, it kind of hit both of us that there may have been feelings for each other that had possibly developing for the previous 4 years. I had been planning on going home for a week to celebrate my 21st and we decided that since I was going to stay with him anyway, we would see what developed.
The night I arrived at his place, it was like all the pieces of the world finally fell in to place. I never did go back to Chicago. For 3 months, we stayed with random friends (initially he was living with his brother, who was not a fan of our relationship and made us leave) until we got a house to rent with a good friend. He would wait outside of my work for me to get off just to see me smile when I saw him. He'd write me the most amazing letters and hide them, waiting for me to find them. It was... perfect, for lack of a better word.
It was very shortly after that the the tone of our relationship changed a bit. The sex became much less frequent (not for a lack of trying on my part, trust me), much less exciting. I began to feel neglected. While, during the previous 3 months, he was more than happy to physically claim me as his in public, with his arm around me, a kiss now and then, simple displays, he no longer wanted to do those things. When we were both at home, he would sit on his computer and play WoW. I began to play, in an attempt to spend more time with him (yes, I still play...). I began to whine a bit, which became a lot, over this feeling of neglect. I eventually came to the conclusion that and this was how it was going to be. I accepted that because there were still moments when it was just the two of us, and I would know I was everything to him, and that's all I wanted.
We began talking very early on about getting married. We'd been really close friends for 4 years before dating. After 6 months of dating, we were engaged. We started talking about what we wanted as far as family (he already had 2 sons). He agreed that he wanted at least one child with me, and that was good. I'd told him that I absolutely wanted children in life, and I wasn't going to give that up. A year after we started dating we were married. We were married at midnight June 1st, 2007 (which just happened to be a blue moon), by a friend of ours. That night, we stayed at a friend's parents' lake house (Nate was almost family to these guys and they volunteered it, since they would be out of town that weekend). Everyone hung out, some got a little drunk, then they all made their ways home, except Nate, our friend Jenica (the one who's family owned the place), and their friend Dan (who had flown in from VA and managed to get out of a Naval ceremony to be there). I went to bed, and expected Nate to be down in an hour or so (he hadn't seen Dan in years, and Dan had to fly out early the next day). I woke up around 8 in the morning to a still empty bed. Nate was still talking to Jenica, completely plastered, and forgotten to come down. Needless to say I was... furious.
He never really apologized for that night. We argued more and more as time went on. It wasn't 2 months into our marriage when he decided he didn't want to have kids, and only said he did because it was what I wanted. I wouldn't call him an alcoholic by any means. He never /had/ to have something to drink, but, when his co-workers would go out for a drink and he'd go along, he didn't have any self control, and always got way more drunk than he should have. We argued constantly about the kids thing, about the feeling of neglect I had, and about more mundane things like money. I also started to resent him. At this point, in order to make this marriage work, I was going to have to give up having children. I, in my resentment, began to dwell on everything I'd already given up for him. Living in Chicago, which I love, going to school rent free while living with my mother, many many friends... I knew this was all wrong, but I continued it. Nothing resolved. We both began to dive in to WoW (soooo stupid, I know) excusing it as time spent together ( :sick: ).
So, okay. This was our marriage until right around this February. At that point, we'd just renewed our lease on our apartment (no longer living with a roommate). I told him then that he had until the lease was up for renewal again in December to straighten our relationship out or we were done. I say HE had to straighten it out, because every time we argued about my feelings of neglect or the lack of sex (seriously, I'm talking, once a week, if I was lucky.... ) he would say that he WANTED to do the things I wanted, he just... never did... and didn't know why.
Now, WoW becomes a bigger problem in the relationship. I joined a bigger guild on our server, leaving Nate's private guild in the process. This guild is run by a 20 year old in New York. We began to talk, we became friends. Talking a lot outside of the game. NOTHING fishy was happening. Nate became jealous, accusing me of cheating on him with this boy from New York. I spent many hours each week reassuring him that this was not the case, and, while I shouldn't have, informing him that if I WANTED to cheat, I wouldn't have to do it online with someone across the country.
One night in May, Nate decided he was going to a friends' house. I had told him earlier that week that I was done asking if I could come along, or volunteering myself. If he wanted me to go with him to places, he'd have to ask. So, Nate tells me he's leaving, asks if I have a raid in WoW, I say, yeah in a few hours (I'd also told him earlier that week that I would NEVER put a raid ahead of him, and if he asked me to, I'd drop it instantly). His response was okay, and he left. around midnight (3 hours later) I called him to see if he was having a good time. I could tell he'd been drinking. I asked him if was, he lied. I let it be and went back to my game. I spent the rest of the night convincing myself not to call him and let him come home when he was ready. 6 am rolls around, and I couldn't take it anymore. I called him. He was quite drunk. He comes home. We start to argue. As typical with him, he knew what I was upset about (him drinking w/o me there to stop him when he went to far), and tried to turn it around on me and started in on the accusations of cheating again. I'd had enough of this. I told him we were done, walked out of the room for a few minutes, and came back in. I asked what we were going to do with the apartment and our cats. He turned, looked at me, and I'm being completely honest, all I saw in his eyes was rage. He said "Nothing. Nothing at all. Because I'm just going to burn it all down. Burn it with you, me, the cats in it."
I looked at him, told him that he was not going to do that to me, and that he would never threaten me like that again, or he'd regret it. The rage then turned to depression, and self hate, and about an hour later he went to sleep. That's when it really sunk in. He threatened my life, and for a split second, he meant it. At the ripe old age of 7, due to an abusive father, I had promised myself that I'd never let a man even threaten me. That, if one did, I'd leave. I started thinking about everything else I'd given up to try to make this marriage work, and... I just couldn't make myself give up that promise.
That weekend I kicked Nate out, until the end of May, when I could leave to go to my mother's in Chicago. I left with every intention of getting a divorce. Since then, Nate and I have talked a bit. He says he knows why everything happened. He says he stopped giving me attention in public because he thought it'd be inappropriate. He says he stopped having sex with me because he didn't think he was good enough at it for me. He says... basically, it was all self hate. Self doubt. Self loathing. He said he always wanted a child with me but said no because he was scared. He promises that he'll never be the same, that he'll never drink again, that he'll do everything so much better, and get professional help, even meds if that's what it takes. He says he's looking for a second job, so he can pay off the lease and save up money to get down to Chicago, to get a place so we can try again here, since he knows this is where I've wanted to be.
I don't know what to think. I don't know if I should give him this chance. If I should put myself in that place again. I don't want to be one of those women that keeps giving chances to man that will never truly change. On the other hand, I don't want to let go of the best friend I've ever had. Of a man that I just know CAN be that same perfect man he was when we started out... anyway... sorry for the long winded tale. I just felt the need to get it out there and maybe get some advice/opinions.