She is just as I imagine - in a little council house on a slightly scruffy estate, in her front room with the tv covered up by a throw, she was wearing an eclectic outfit that wasn't quite smart, and had mannish sandals on. It didn't seem the most hopeful of starts. However, I have to admit that she did seem to ask the right questions of both of us, and encouraged some lively discussion, to say the least.
We talked about our pasts, then talked about how we met and the first 7 years of the relationship, and we were actually pretty generous with one another. Then we got onto current issues.
It's a fact that the arguments began in September last year, only two months in to our marriage. I have my own ideas about how they started; he has a slightly biased version - biased against me, of course. What was interesting, was that he didn't once mention his temper outbursts and violent episodes - he didn't even allude to them. I didn't want to bring it up as I feel that's really his confession, and as such it's more cathartic if it actually comes from him.
In the final part of the session, he played the wounded soldier a bit too much for my liking, until I got fed up with it and told her that I felt angry at him - angry that he's always so grumpy and miserable. And that he holds me accountable for that. I also said (bravely I thought) that I didn't trust his decisions any more and where me and my daughters are involved, I will be making my own decisions. He really did not like that one bit.
The session closed around then, and we drove home in silence. We've barely spoken since.
Our next session is on Friday...... watch this space.......
PS if anyone has any suggestions or tips to make sure I can get my points across without sounding petty or resentful, please let me know!!