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"The Greatest gift that you can give to others is the gift of unconditional love and acceptance!" ~Brian Tracy

All post and stories are the sole property of Velvet Over Steel aka Coreen Trost. I write and create post in order to help others, so share as you want. I just ask that you link back or give VOS credit. Some of the stories are going into a book in progress. Thank You ALL.. for your support and help!!
"If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader." ~ John Quincy Adams

Monday, November 1, 2010

Living a Lie....
Have you ever lived a lie?  There was a period in my life where I was.  Although I denied it for a long time.  Then when unhappiness was taking over and consuming my life... I realized that I was living a lie.  However... eventually, as with most lies... the truth came out.  Here is my story:

My ex-husband and I were together for 15 years.  Married for 13 of those.  It had been a very rough ride from the very beginning.  We should had remained friends and raised our son as a team, instead of getting married.  At the time, we both wanted to be a family and 'make things right' we thought. 

I cared about my husband and I feel I was a good wife, while being the best mother I could be.  We all do our best, right?  However I never had that deep, trusting, soul connecting and understanding love that I know I should have had.  Then when things in our marriage continued to be full of turmoil and even abuse... what feelings I had faded until there was nothing left but emptiness and sorrow. 

After a while I felt I was just going through the motions.  Other people looking at me from the 'outside' thought I had a normal, happy family and marriage.  Because for one, I didn't tell anyone anything that was really going on behind closed doors back then.  The truth was... I was far from happy and my marriage was not a loving, trusting, supportive one.  I was living a lie.  Which in a sense was because I would try to care, try hard to make us a happy family, mostly... I would try to love him.  I even said I did .... and every time I felt enormous guilt. 

He wasn't 'all bad' of course... no one is.  He was a good provider financially and took care of things outside of the house; yard and vehicles.  He always allowed me to take care of the boys the way I saw best, taking care of our home the way I wanted, able to stay home with the boys and have a home daycare for extra money... even when he worked nights and had to sleep during the day.  I appreciated my son's dad for those things very, very much and always told him that. 

However, along with feeling no love in my heart and the continued verbal and emotional abuse...  I moved further and further away from feeling anything.  All it seemed he wanted to do was argue and fight... all the time.  Just to get what he wanted and to get it his way.. no matter what.   He didn't care if the kids heard the horribly things he said or if they got in the way.  He could be very manipulative and blamed me for 'making' him mad when I didn't agree with something.
"Love comes when manipulation stops; when you think more about the other person than about his or her reactions to you.” ~ Dr. Joyce Brothers
Somehow the times when things got abusive, were always my fault according to him.  I truly believe that either consciously or subconsciously, he did and said things in front of the kids because he knew how much that upset and even devastated me.  I grew up with my parents fighting most of the time; so it was the 'last' environment I ever wanted for my own children to grow up in.  This was the 'bright red button he pushed' to upset me even more. 

I felt back then that he wanted to fight because he had to have complete control of me.  When I didn't agree with something or didn't want him to do something that I knew he shouldn't, he would start a fight as a way of wearing me down.  Like a child does when they want something their parent has told them 'No' or it's too dangerous.  At times this computer IT professional, school board member and sport ref and coach... could be very immature.  In my opinion at least. 

That last year together I was so tired and so done.  I never wanted to fight, I grew up with that.  And I certainly didn't want to fight anymore in front of my children.  I remember locking my self in the bathroom with the shower running trying to drawn out his yelling, abusive insults and pounding at the door.  While I sat on the floor shaking, crying and praying for him to stop.  I just wanted the fighting to stop! 

Realistic or not, I would like to live the rest of my life without ever 'fighting' again.  I know I will never live in a situation where or with someone who wants to fight or has to get their way all the time.  That's not realistic or normal.  Life is too short to be so unhappy... let alone be in an abusive and/or loveless relationship.

Which brings me to what ended up being the hardest time for me at the end of my marriage.  It was telling my husband that I didn't love him anymore. That he had killed whatever feelings I had had for him.  There was no 'unconditional love'  from either of us by that point.  So I felt I needed to be honest, for both my own conscious and to lay the foundation for my wanting a divorce.
"Life is too short not to love and be loved!!  Nor not to be in a great loving relationship with someone who not only brings out the best in you... but also fills your heart and soul with happiness!" ~ Me...
At first, he would not 'accept' how I felt or didn't feel.  Then he refused to, or couldn't, accept that it was because of anything that he did.  He decided that there must be someone else.  What??!!  I would have had the time, energy, self-esteem for that...When?!  No... I barely had the emotional balance to get up in the morning by then and all the energy I had through out the day was trying to keep my job and take care of my sons.  I was so drained and again so done!  In fact I was told later that I was 'cold' and wasn't trying anymore. 

Well, I thought.. he's right, I wasn't trying anymore.. because I had and nothing had changed.  I was done.  Maybe that is why I seemed cold, because I was finally done.  I think that is the emotional calm when you are ready and need to take care of things and more on.  Mostly for yourself, but in my situation I needed to also move on for my sons.  The fighting and yelling had never been good for them and my youngest was being pulled in as a pawn, I felt.  That was probably my breaking point when I realized just how much damage was being done to my children.
"Many times people stay in bad or loveless marriages because of the fear of the 'unknown' and because at least is has a sense of familiarity. Some people feel that is better than nothing.  I would rather be alone and happy, than to be with someone whom I'm not happy with." ~ Me..
Finally, over time, I got stronger and less afraid of leaving. Less afraid of the 'unknown', the financial realities and less afraid of his threats... what he would or wouldn't do.  He could be very unpredictable and obviously out of control at times.

I was also becoming much more confident in my self.  Confident that I could take care of my boys and that I could stand up to whatever lies he would say later in court, or what dramas he would cause or play out in the small community in which we not only lived, but also both of us grew up in.  That is when I was so ready to have peace in my life and home.  I was finally able to let myself be just a little be selfish and think a little bit about myself for once in regards to my own happiness.   

I always put my children first or consider what any decision, one way or the other, would effect my children.  It was hard for me not to... that is the type of parent I am. They were always my main concern and responsibility.  However in the end, I felt that I had to finally think about myself, and my own happiness at least a little bit.. to do what I needed to do.  Otherwise, I may have never left or been truly happy with my life.. ever. 

I don't regret trying though.  Not at all.  I can honestly say that I did try and anyone who knew me then knows that.  Even my ex-husband realizes that now.  After all these years we finally get along... although apart.  Letting go of the past and forgiving releases us, which allows us to move forward into a better life.

I've known many people in the same situation... where a tiny bit of selfishness and a little bit of concern for their own happiness... would actually do them a great deal of good.  However I understand first hand how hard that is for those with the heart and character that put their children first (like I have).  I respect and understand what they are going through and love those persons so very much... for who they are. I understand!

Many people never make that decision.  The decision that life is too short to live in an unhappy home or be in a loveless marriage.  This is the reason I now write and tell these personal stories of my own life.  In the hope of giving strength, encouragement and  the belief that any situation can get better.  That we can all get stronger, heal, grow, have a better life and above all Be Happy!  We all deserve to be happy!
“This is my wish for you: Comfort on difficult days, smiles when sadness intrudes, rainbows to follow the clouds, laughter to kiss your lips, sunsets to warm your heart, hugs when spirits sag, beauty for your eyes to see, friendships to brighten your being, faith so that you can believe, confidence for when you doubt, courage to know yourself, patience to accept the truth, Love to complete your life.” ~ Quote from
More Powerful Post:
Betrayal has many forms...
Living the Truth
Silencing Verbal Abuse

The Narcissistic Co-dependent Marriage/Relationship Symptoms

Manipulative People: Covert Aggressive Personality Disorder

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  1. Thank you for sharing. Interesting post dear one. One I can relate to especially in confidence. Blessings.

  2. Whew girl. You are right, life is too short to spend it unhappy.

    Peace, Love and Chocolate

  3. whew...heart wrenching...i am glad you found your freedom and that you are willing to share your story...there is power in it...

  4. Thank you for your courage in sharing your story. We sure learned from your experience.

    And I am glad that you got out of a troubled marriage. Nobody deserves to be in a loveless relationship.

    I am with you about - NOT fighting in front of the kids and never involving the kids in any fight, even if the fight is about them. The kids just don't deserve to hear and experience fighting, especially those fighting that are not fair and that don't resolve anything. That has always been a rule between hubby and me - that should we fight, NEVER in front of the kids, no matter what.

    I do not know if you have someone right now, but I hope you find or have someone you can share 'Enduring Fire' with, in your romance together.

    I leave you with this, from Ben Zion Bokser:

    "The thin kindling wood gives off a brilliant flame, but that flame cannot last, and does not give out warmth. It’s function is to ignite the heavy log, which will burn with less sparkle, less glitter, but with the most glowing steadiness. The fire of later years is not as brilliant as the blaze which burned at the beginning but it is firmer, surer, warmer."

    "Let us not permit the kindling wood to flare up and burn itself out in a beautiful but brief exhibit of flame, without being sure it ignites the thicker log for the more enduring fire."

  5. Thank you so much for sharing your stories. I would like to say that your positivity does make a difference and I look forward t it each day. :)

    Peace be with you my friend.
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

  6. What an incredible story and by sharing it you are helping so many people. It's incredible sometimes what people will go through and then they realize it has to stop. There is no easy way to leave a situation like that. I know it took incredible courage.

  7. I think many hold out hoping to save their family, but in the long run it is getting ruined.I am the first child of a 2nd marriage for both my parents and it worked better coming in with a different attitude for them.Studies show your kids attitudes over separation develop worse at an older age.I added a continued thought and reflection in a post you had the 28th.

  8. Thank you for sharing your story, it was a pleasure to read.


  9. I could have written a similar post about my first marriage. It can be VERY difficult to leave when you have tried so hard. My ex also decided that it must be "someone else" why I wanted a divorce even though we had argued every day of our marriage about EVERYTHING and he is still in complete denial about everything he did or didn't do to cause me to want to divorce him. The hardest part for me was realizing how much I had tried to make everything something it wasn't. I hadn't been honest with myself at all. That is scary. I probably was much harder on my 2nd marriage than I ever should have been because I was always second-guessing myself as to whether I was happy or just trying to make things "happy". I would have enjoyed this marriage much more from the start if I'd never had such a rotten first experience and been more honest with myself about it. It's hard to forgive myself for not being honest about the first marriage from the get-go. I'm sure that you can relate on some level.

  10. Thank you for sharing, I know it is tough. I feel for you, but I am sure you will be fine. Yes I do understand putting the boys first. Captivating post.

  11. Hi Coreen, Thanks for sharing... I totally relate to your post. I was married to my first husband for 20 yrs.--and was miserable. I just 'existed' ---and never dreamed I could get out of that situation. I was truly living a lie. I wanted out, but didn't think it could happen.

    Unlike you though, my ex didn't provide for us very well. He was lazy --and I had to work also in order for us to stay above water (sorta)... BUT--we didn't share this 'lie' with others... People thought we were a happy family... HA!

    My ex finally had an affair with one of my young piano students. That was the END. I remember driving to Florida and weeping uncontrollably while telling my family that I 'had' to get out of the marriage. I was the first in my family to divorce --so it was very hard. BUT--they were supportive...

    I found a job --and left the marriage... It was the best thing I've ever done --and our 3 sons hopefully have not suffered too much from the marriage break-up. I don't believe in staying together for the sake of the children... Kids will do fine---including mine.

    YES---I lived a lie for many years.... NOT FUN.


  12. What a powerful post, I have married for the second time now. In my previous marriage it was a lie, always trying to put on a front. after we split up someone said what a waste of time. I thought to myself it is not a waste of time. I take my lessons learned from it and use it as a growing process. Only after a while can you really see the lie. You are wonderfully strong, I wish you all the happiness in the world. Hugs.

  13. You are a strong and brave woman who has tried to do what is right at every turn. So many people would rather endure abuse than risk the unknown. It is brave to step out of your security, even though it was a very miserable one. Thank you for sharing and probably helping others as well!

  14. Thanks for sharing your story... maybe you have given others the courage to break away. Sometimes we just don't know how to take the first step.

  15. I wish you nothing but happiness going forward, you and your children.

  16. that could not have been easy dear, well said xxx

  17. Aww, Coreen..big hugs to you. I'm sorry you had to experience this. I'm glad you did the brave thing and get out. Life IS too short. Several good lessons were for all of us!

  18. Coreen, I respect you so much more today. I sincerely do. You've set an example for your sons. You've conveyed to them that each of us has tremendous strength to endure the worst of it all and still come up brighter than ever.

  19. Excellent post!

    I've been in a really bad relationship too. The guy was sooooooooo controlling and sadly, I let him be that way. I'm grateful I got away from him. We were engaged to be married and I can't even begin to imagine how awful that would be if we'd gone through with it.

  20. This was a very strong personal piece and it must have been difficult to write. What a strong woman you are, it is definitely not easy to break away from a marriage and even if we know things are wrong, there is a big step from wishing things were different to actually making a difference.
    Beautiful and very candid post and absolutely an inspiration to anyone who feels trapped and is worried about making a change.

  21. Hello,

    It is heart wrenching to read how a good marriage fails because one person wants to be dominating the other.Instead of give and take there is a complete calamity by the domineering attitude of your husband.Times,, have changed and unless both partners work as equals, encourage and support each other there will be no love or peace at home.

    It is always better to amicably separate than continue with contentious living.Every one deserves peace and happiness in this short life and a life spent in arguments,fighting,yelling is no life at all.

    Fantastic post,very informative and very educative.

  22. Courageous vulnerability here. Thank you for sharing some of the actions, emotions and pain that go on in abusive relationships. As a minister, it is good for me to hear/read these stories for when I encounter people in similar circumstances (which, I do encounter). God's blessings upon your family. wb

  23. Glad you had the courage to find happiness!!

  24. Thanks for having the courage to share what you have gone through. God bless!

  25. Thank you for sharing. In my business I have seen many children effected by their parents lack of love for each other, lack of respect and more. Thank goodness you started to think about yourself in order to be what you children needed. Good for you.
    Take care and God Bless!!

  26. Thank you for sharing your story.


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