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Is It Really Love or Is It Simply A Feeling of Obligation

I have been involved with a married man for the last 14 years. When we met we were both married. He said he was unhappy in his marriage and mine was falling apart. My spouse was already seeing someone else and I later learned he had gotten her pregnant. Since we (my husband and I) were both messing around  I just let the relationship go. We were soon divorced. The guy I was dating really began to pour on the charm after my divorce. I knew that my MM had messed around on his wife for years, but for some dumb reason I thought what we had was special. That's how it seemed anyway. My MM and his wife finally separated in 1999, but have yet to divorce. We live together and share everything, but I'm starting to think this is how I will spend the rest of my life and it's not what I want. He still helps her out quite a bit. I see it as him being a good man, especially in the beginning because he still had two teens at home who were on the verge of graduating. I thought after the kids graduated and began their life we would begin ours. The kids are now 25 and 23 and he still has not gotten a divorce. When I ask him about it he says if he divorces her she won't have any medical benefits and he didn't want to do that to her. He also cuts her grass and works on things around her house. While I understand taking care of your family, I understand what my actions cause, and we are living together, I still feel like the other woman, especially since it's hard to get him to work on anything around here. I cut the grass here and take out the trash. When we first moved in together I found out that he had been seeing someone else besides me. That woman ended her relationship with him, but I was naive and stayed. About 6 years ago I learned that he had been having a year long relationship with a woman. My response was to mess around on him so he could see how I felt. While I have forgiven him for his indiscretions (that I know about), he still holds my one against me. I know that it wasn't the right thing to do, but I thought I was teaching him a lesson. Right! He still those it in my face if I'm late or go out with the girls. I feel as if I'm under a spot light at times and I have no desire to do what I did before. It not only hurt him, it hurt me because I feel I am a better person now. I know the moral mistake I made in messing with a married man and felt that everything he did to me I deserved for what I did to his wife. The last year has really been an eye-opener for me. His wife has had 3 operations and he has gone to the hospital to stay with her. He said he does it because of the kids and because she doesn't have anyone. I have taken it in stride, especially since the tables have now turned. The attention I took from her years ago is now being taken from me. I am now in a gray area. I have been ready to leave for the last 5 years because of problems that we've had  and my wanting to advance spiritually. It seemed like every time I got ready to leave something would happen to make me stay. I love him and we have so much time and finances invested (so it's like a marriage). He allowed me to quit work for 2 years and finish nursing school. We are also raising my teen nephew who came to live with us a year ago. I just want a new start. He is obviously never going to get a divorce and I really want to grow spiritually, buts it's hard to do that when you're living in sin. It's also hard to uproot a kid who has been through the fire with his mother and the DSS system. I don't want a whole lot out of life. I don't ask for riches, I have learned from my mistakes and have tried to make amends. My biggest fear in life  is not being happy and I am now facing that fear.
sheilastrawberry sheilastrawberry 41-45 3 Responses Feb 25, 2011

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Deja vue! I did marry my mm and all he did was put me in the wife role and got a girlfriend! I haven't seen him for about 6 weeks now and I want him to file for divorce We have 12 years together but only 16 months married. I don't know what to tell you other than he will NEVER change. If you aren't happy like I wasn't, then get out! It hard. Really hard to do, but if I can do it anybody can. I wish you the best in whatever you decide to do.

Sorry but I agree with smooches. I think you should cut your losses now and get out of this situation. You need to think about yourself and your happiness.

Here are my 3 reasons why you should let him go: 1) You are not happy. Although, your happiness may not seem too important to him; it should be the most important thing to you. It should be your sole reason for leaving; but it's more complicated than that. 2) He's still married. Yes, it sucks to think he won't ever get divorced but that seems to be his plan. 3) You have swapped roles with his wife. I know crazy right but really think about it. He is now wining and dining her like he used to do you when you were the mistress. All of sudden her needs are being put before yours; which was completely opposite when you were the mistress. He has grown comfortable with you ; because he sees he can manipulate you like he did her. He has no intention of ever being with just you. He'll juggle you and his wife and whoever else; because you're letting him get away with it just like his wife did.