Originally Posted by Matilda
Peppermint's article reflects the honest original expectations in my marriage.
Going into the relationship, that was what I was promised. That reads as ridiculous, I look back on it now and I laugh at myself for the naivity, but as a teenager I believed every bit of it, and I've always kept 'my' side of that contract 100%.
Even now, just talking about this here, feels like I've committed some huge sin, some huge crime against him, because I'm 'showing him up' by admitting "but that's not what happened"
Nothing you have said here sounds like you've committed any kind of sin. You came into a relationship as a teen. When we are young we don't know ourselves or enough about the world. I'm in my 30's too and have been with my husband for 16 years. I'm very fortunate that we've grown into a good match. Being that we were together as young as we were though it could have very easily turned out far differently.
I think at the time we got together that we both believed in the fairy tale as well. As things turned out though monogamy isn't what works for either of us. The difference between how we have ended up and where you have ended up is that we have always talked about everything all the way along. There have been hard times when I have wished that I was all he needed (honestly though that would be a lot of pressure).
As for cutting you off from any other social relationships that screams insecurity to me. I'm wondering if he's worried that somewhere deep down you are capable of having more than one relationship too and that somehow he wouldn't measure up. I'd ask him about this if I were you and I would also ask him theoretically how he would feel about you taking another lover (regardless of if you're actually interested in pursuing one at the moment or not).
If you have children you both need to be working on showing them what a healthy relationship is. Children tend to imitate what they see their parents doing when they grow up and get into relationships. This might mean that you both go to individual counselling and couples counselling or if things really aren't going to work out for the 2 of you it might mean going your separate ways and building healthy relationships for your children to emulate. Ask yourself honestly if you would want your children to end up living the way you are now.
I'm sorry that this post is sounding a little harsh. I'm concerned about you and I want to see you do what is healthy for you. The first thing on that list is to find yourself. It's easier said than done. Being a half of a couple since you were basically a kid (I've been there too) you tend to give up your own identity and become a part of the other person. I only really found myself once my husband joined the navy, we moved, and I stared from scratch finding my own life. Was it hard? Absolutely! Would I trade the experience to have my old, uncomplicated, undefined self back? Never!