I'll be blunt: I think I married a man who is too good for me. I'm having trouble dealing with my feelings of low self-worth and am tormented by insecurity. It's like the relationship version of Imposter Syndrome.
posted by anonymous to human relations (27 answers total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
Many of these feelings are a result of my very checkered past, which includes a failed "starter marriage" in my early 20s in which both parties had massive emotional and psychological (not to mention substance abuse) problems, but my infidelity was the breaking point. My 20s were in general a terrible time, full of extremely bad decisions (cheating on my spouse), horrible ethical choices (several affairs with married men after my own marriage ended) and just basically a long litany of things that I am still deeply ashamed of.
Over the last five years or so I have really pulled my life together, started making healthier life choices, moved to an entirely new country and started all over again. I have a great job, friends, respect, and no one who knows me in the new location has any inkling about my dark past. Most people see me as successful, attractive, confident. I'm in my 30s now and I have worked really hard to get in a good place, and while I still struggle from time to time, I have mostly moved on from the darkness and the shame.
I met a man just over a year ago who is frankly the most unbelievably amazing person I have ever met. We quickly fell in love and were married, and overall I have never been happier. He is intelligent, sensitive, handsome, successful, kind, gentle... we share so many interests and he lavishes me with love and affection. He tells me all the time how much he loves me, tries to anticipate my every need, puts me first in every situation, and is just generally the ideal husband. I adore him and quite frankly am in awe of him. Even after a year, he seems to have basically no faults.
The fact that he is so wonderful just somehow makes me wonder what he sees in me. I have a short temper and am sometimes irritable, including with him; I can be overly emotional, impatient and excessively negative. He has inspired me to work on those negative qualities, so I am making some progress, but every time I do something "bad" - whether it's drinking a too much at a dinner party or forgetting to buy more toilet paper - I feel like an absolute waste of space and that he could have someone so much better than me. I worry that he compares me to previous girlfriends who were "better" than me. I worry that he will eventually discover the "truth" about me, and leave me for someone else.
He knows about my previous marriage, but not many of the details (i.e. my infidelity). I've never told him the extent of the things I went through in my 20s and, although he is quite open-minded, forgiving and tolerant, he is also quite conservative and from a somewhat sheltered upbringing, so I think he would be pretty shocked if he knew about my drug use, affairs, heavy drinking, suicide attempts, etc. - which makes me feel even worse about myself that I am "hiding" this from him.
I know I should get into therapy, but the country I now live in doesn't offer a lot of counselling resources due to cultural reasons, and the options in my native language (which is also not English, by the way, so please excuse any mistakes) are almost nonexistent.
So can you please share any resources, ideas, or ways of framing my feelings in a more positive way? I know this question is a little bit rambly, but as you can probably tell, I'm really struggling to understand my own feelings and badly need some help.