thanks, wife2. it truly is a different dynamic, that feeling of being stuck and powerless as an adult as compared to those feelings as a child. technically, i could have 'walked' at any point in the process, but i felt beholden to stay in there, fight the good fight, attempt to fix everything that was wrong or i was a quitter, a bad person, bad wife, bad mother, bad you-name-it. i wasn't going to abandon the ones i loved emotionally the way i was abandoned by my folks - i wanted to do everything possible to be perfect at all that i was involved in, including abusive relationships. those i would look at rationally, keep analyzing what i might be doing wrong, try something else, re-analyze, etc. ad nauseum. but above all, i was trapped by the notion that it was my job and my duty to stay and make the best of every situation, no matter how horrible it might be, or die trying. in the end, my sense of survival won out. thank you, god.