Military Retirement: You are not alone!

by Michelle/California

My ex and father of our 7 month old baby is in an angry, reckless, volatile spiral as well. We met at the end of his 23 year active duty service with an E9 ranking.

He called me his retirement gift and he quickly proposed and we quickly became pregnant. The year was a rough one to say the least as it was full of bouts of praising of how wonderful i was and then the next minute i was abusive, crazy, bipolar, etc.

i had our daughter and she was home 2 days before he screamed at me and called me a —ing idiot and a —— b**** because i didn’t want to rent a boat for Mother’s Day because i didn’t feel up to it. And it all went downhill from there.

We had just resigned a year lease on our 3500 sq ft 5 bedroom home when he bailed and bought the first house he saw (which has many many problems), he spent erratically and blew through $23,000 in a matter of months. He’s now been in his home for 6 months and is filing for bankruptcy.

When i try to help him, i am instantly the enemy, actually I’m the enemy in everything i do. I’m scared because we share a daughter together. He has 2 guns which are not locked in a gun safe. Our daughter lost her health insurance because there was no money in the account to cover the premium, i was at his house last week and we were looking to reconcile, he started having some issues with things in the house and flipped out and started snapping at me because he can’t afford to fix them.

It’s just a very very sad and scary situation. Yesterday i was called a leach and mooch (mind you i don’t receive one penny from him and never asked for anything) but i do have two disabled children from a prior relationship and one of them receives a benefit for in home care due to his severe impairment. I guess that makes me a leach 😔

We met volunteering for special needs baseball as we both have disabled kids, my situation now is the same as it was then so how he fell in love with me if he despises my lifestyle so much is baffling. I fear for him and his kids. He is irrational, erratic, hypocritical, reckless and irresponsible these days. He was always the responsible one, making sure he met his kids needs before he did anything else, today he buys video games before he pays his bills and it’s very sad. His favorites are first person shooter games on the PS VR, i think he’s trying to relive his life in the service but who knows.

I wish there was a cure for post retirement trauma. If i knew how to snap him out of it, i would do it in a heartbeat. I also feel lost and heartbroken. I’m trying to find some peace. It is a very difficult road for everyone involved.

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Detaching with Love
by: Linda2

Michelle, when I read your post, my gut ached with fear for you and your children's physical safety and emotional security. Your post brought up the pain of my past and the reactions and actions that that pain evoked. Although my life's circumstances may be different from yours, I was very hyper-vigiliant in my relationships with others. I had a pattern of choosing those who were emotionally unavailable, and/or my duffle bag of insecurities drove healthy people away. I would "chase them", practically throw myself at their feet, grabbing onto a leg, only to dragged and kicked off (metaphorically) suffering rejection and abandonment again and again, as I did during my childhood, when our home was destroyed by mental health issues and alcohol. I spent years of trying rescue my loved ones, and others, when I was powerless to do so. I often made matters worse,and myself sicker. I continued that pattern until I was finally beaten down enough to seek spiritual and emotional help. Robin Norwood's book, Women Who Love Too Much, which told my story in a hundred forms and Adult Children of Alcoholics meetings and literature, among other healing works at age 31 or 32 around 1987 while serving in the Army. Through the grace of my God, I had enough healing, ego strength and faith to transition from the Army in the mid-90s without leaving too much of a mess in my wake. I do remember wanting to get back into an old relationship, needing to be rescued. Luckily for us, I didn't act on it. There's a natural fear in venturing into the unknown that makes some of us want to revert to the familiar, regardless of how sick or futile it may have been. I look at my old thinking now and realize I thought of change as an abyss, instead of a just, well, life in motion. Even the soldiers who had emotional maturity and a solid pre-retirement plan suffered from anxiety at leaving the nest at a young retirement age. Most soldiers grow up in the Army then comes retirement, a major transition at a fairly young age. I felt better retiring at 63 recently, in part due to Retirement-Online. If your ex already had unattended emotional issues, he may have made some unwise decisions and is reluctant to seek help he may continue to suffer and act out and you already know it isn't healthy for you and the kids. If his first spouse is entitled to a percentage of his retirement pay, he could be boiling with those financial resentment issues among other things out of your control. Regardless, I don't think your problem is him. I think it's more a matter of getting to your inner core and finding the wisdom and power to safely negotiate your life with your children, whether or not he is to remain in your sphere. Respectfully, out of concern, I am thinking that for you to be safe and successful in your journey, you might benefit from me saying that I think you have a PROBLEM that may be better worked through with professional counseling and/or legal resources, keeping Retirement.Online as a support tool for your retirement ISSUES, for what it's worth. Regardless of your path, I wish you all the best in this new year.

My Thoughts
by: Anonymous

The VA has programs and metal health groups that might help him but he has to go there and ask for help.

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