Sunday 16 September 2012

You know things are bad when...

-You escape to work with two kids just to write a blog post and do some lesson planning.

-You fucking dread the 3 day weekend.

So the divorce proceedings haven't moved any farther along, but they are never far from my mind. I don't want to keep bashing Ryota here (but I totally will don't worry) because I think it's more of an issue of us being totally mis-matched rather than he's always an arse. I do think he's an arse a lot of the time, but that may be just because my arse-o-metre is set a certain way. I honestly believe he'd be so much happier with a Japanese wife, J-women seem to have a knack of showing they love a man by accepting their imperfections, whereas I just can't do it.

I'm so fucking scared of going back to work full time this week, I know I'm going to be stuck doing all the housework, cooking, working and looking after the littlen. I know people say 'just leave the housework!' But that's not the way I roll, I can't stand it not being done. I'm no perfect housekeeper but I like my clutter hidden and floors vacuumed at the very minimum, and if I don't do it, no other fucker will.

Today has been hard, I let Ryota's mood affect me more than I should, but it's so hard to be perky when he's so negative and cranky. I also feel our communication skills are at an all time low, despite his English being quite good and my Japanese being OK, it really is horrible. Today in the car he said, "I had a dream last night that I was smoking a cigarette!" to which I replied, "Oh yeah, was it good??" And then told him I had a dream that I put Ash in the ergo and dropped him on his head (what the fuck is with that?!) but he didn't reply for about a minute and then said "I didn't ask you what your dream was, I just told you mine." It's stupid little stuff like this that really fucking shits me, maybe I was bad but I think more likely he thinks I said "That's good" instead of "Was it good?" so thought I was just brushing him off. We've also had issues lately because he keeps sighing and saying "Ahhh Ash can't speak English! Should I teach him??" and this fucking pisses me off to the absolute fucking max. I feel bad Ash's English is not where it should be, but I speak English to him whenever I can but I work, so he goes to kindy at 9, and most nights I get home at 8pm, not a lot of time. I feel guilty enough as it is, I really don't need my partner to make me feel even more guilty, I just don't need it.

It's a combination of all these things and more that have me planning the best way out. I just don't really know where to start. I want to stay in Japan but the logistics are overwhelming me.


  1. Hey, married to a Japanese wife here, and I have to say "J-women seem to have a knack of showing they love a man by accepting their imperfections" gave me quite a chuckle: as in, mine doesn't.

    Now both you and I are married to just one Japanese person, so our sample is limited. Marriage with kids can be a slog. I have a two-and-a-half year boy, and another of unknown gender due January. Today I got called 'shitsukoi' in front of all of her friends! She was right at the time, but her timing was still wrong. So yes, I should have been less tedious, and she should mind her environment better. Marriage to real people is a bit of a slog.

    Won't speak for her, but I love her, so the slog looks worth it in the long run. And good Christ I have only been with worse women. I can't give you any advice except that you are very much not alone.

  2. I'll echo Ant, as so often. Especially in chuckling at the 'tolerating the imperfections' line ;)

    You're probably also sick of me saying 'you're both unusually stressed now and it'll pass', because while that's true, you're 'usual' level of stress never seemed like much of an improvement, to be honest. Only you know the truth of that for sure.

    On a legal basis, check how you'd stand with visas, and especially with the kids. You don't need me to tell you any more horror stories about gaijin parents being shafted by their Japanese exes regarding custody and the like.

    And on a personal basis, have you actually discussed (not argued about) how you feel with Ryota? In all honesty I'm sceptical about his ability to change, but it's probably best to at least give him the chance. If it goes to shit after that then he's only got himself to blame.

    Still though, I'd get the first of those sorted before the second. Good luck.

    1. My turn to echo kamo. Get your legal ducks in a row, even when things are sunny.

  3. Have to agree with the gentlemen above, find out your legal rights, ok regards to the kids and the business. The international centre here has an English speaking lawyer come once a month to give people advice. Do they have something like that where you are? Knowing some of your options might help you feel less overwhelmed.

  4. Unfortunately, foreigners, let alone spouses, have very little in terms of legal rights in this country. Many foreigners who've gotten married and begun to raise families seem to realize this too late. Wiki "International child abduction in Japan" for starters.

    Re: Wikipedia

    Although there are still a lot problems that need to get worked out, Wikipedia is a good place to start while being ready to question everything.


    1. True enough. True enough that when my wife asked me, evenhandedly, if I would let her take the kids to visit Japan when we are back in Canada if we had significant frictions in our marriage at the time, I said:

      "You think I'm nuts? Of course not."

      Japan's law and government has shown itself quite irresponsible, no matter signing the Hague Convention. God knows this country and its representatives are known for following the form at the expense of function, and have done more of what you can say more politely, but amounts to bigotry.

      Shouldn't we trust our spouses? Yes, or I wouldn't have bred. But if you get past your second decade and haven't learned people can sucker-punch you, and better the closer they are, you won't listen to anything I say to teach you. Hope you are lucky in love...

  5. Wow, he sounds like he's just overly sensitive..... Is he a mama's boy???

  6. Seriously, do you really think Ryota would sue for custody? That's not the vibe that I'm getting. I wouldn't worry too much about the prospect of losing your kids to him, he knows full well what he'd be tangling with if the worst came to the worst. Also, if you plan on staying on in Japan (with or without your husband) you should accept that your sons are Japanese, and are pretty much going to regard themselves as such regardless of your efforts to teach them otherwise. English ability is always going to be important for them, but it's always going to be something that they do on the side, not to be taken seriously. I would say that you have got to choose quickly between Japan and your home country, and do it while your options are open, and before the kids get cemented into the social and educational systems here.

  7. This is true.
    The laws are really stacked against you here with regards to custody. you probably know, few people who end their marriages here have the insight to understand or "co parent". It is very sad for the kids. In the eyes of the courts, custody is always one-sided here. It is up to the parents to work out a "joint-custody" agreement if at all possible. I hope that you investigate all of your rights and pick the best avenue for you!

  8. J-women seem to have a knack of showing they love a man by accepting their imperfections, whereas I just can't do it.

    haha, true!
    if one wasn`t raised in J, we westeners will never learn that.

    but maybe that`s why J-female, gaijin-male works better than the opposite?