A Daily Struggle

I was married for 23 years. We were best friends since high school, soul-mates (Or so I thought). Went through many difficult times together in our marriage but we got through them because we were such good friends. The year of 2011 was a difficult financial year because my husband's business was struggling to survive. We had to file bankruptcy, then had to short sale our house but still we focused on the positive and both said that a house is replaceable and we could start over. Well, 2 weeks after moving into our house rental he tells me that he's not happy, doesn't feel compatible and feels we should separate. My heart ripped in two on that day but I moved forward. He moved out for 6 months and he was in crisis mode the entire time due to his financial situation. We did keep contact and went on some "dates". After 6 months he asked to move back in. I think I fooled myself into thinking he wanted me back, but the reality was that he was on the verge of losing the business which we worked so hard to get. During the 6 months we were separated I received therapy and did work on myself and felt I made some huge milestones that would also help the marriage. I had asked him to join me in therapy but he didn't think he needed help from someone else to sort things out and wasn't ready to work on us until he was clear on himself. There were changes, I felt better than ever and felt I had a new start but didn't feel it was openly received by him. I felt like I was on an emotional rollercoaster. Everytime I tried to talk to him he just said he needed time, but now 10 months since he has moved back in he again has come to the realization that he just doesn't want to be married. He says he feels "trapped" and has to "find himself". I saw signs of mid-life crisis when he joined a hard core gym and has become focused on looking good and started wearing jewelry and talking about a tatoo (which he has always been against). There are times I don't know who this person is and times where I see glimpses of the man I fell in love with. He wants separation again but he can't afford to move out. Because of the person I am and because I worry about my kids I told him he could stay. We don't argue (never have) but I can feel his avoidance in coming home every night. I don't think he has had an affair but I have accused him of emotional affairs in the past with female friends. I am a woman of strong faith and am struggling with knowing what to do at this point. Do I keep fighting for my marriage and keep my wife role giving him unconditional love, in hopes of him "snapping" out of it or do I give him what he wants and set him free? I have been praying for an answer to this question but have not yet gotten a response.
justme760 justme760
41-45, F
4 Responses Jan 24, 2013

Yes, I agree he is going through a mid life crisis, but I feel I've done all I can do and stood by him as long as I could. I urged him to go to therapy, reach out to friends, seek supports but he didn't.
The latest is that I kicked him out last night after I overheard a conversation he was having with another woman. Supposedly this started "after we separated" but in my book we are still married. He crossed the line for me and I asked him to leave. I told him I still love him and that I would take him back when he is ready to work on us, but he better be ready to do a lot of work because there's been a lot of damage done. I know he was not expecting me to take this action because he knows that I have always been there for him and do everything to save and help him. Now, he's going to experience a reality check. I still keep the faith and hope, but I'm not focused on that anymore. Now, it's about me and my kids.

This sounds like mid life crisis for him, you sure he didnt ask for separation because there was someone else on the scene with him ? If he's reacting to his crisis the way he is then surely he needs help and there's possibility of getting togather.

But that does not mean there should be unconditional love from your side. You need to make him reaise that his decision has had a big effect on your life. You were willing to go through the tough times as a team and work your way out of it, but leaving you alone he's made it difficult for you and himself.

I think you need to make him realise that there is a way out of the crisis and both of you can work togather at it. I do hope things work out, good luck and keep us posted.

Thank you. Seems we must both begin a new journey for the love we deserve. But, first we must heal from this deep hurt. Take Care.

Reading your post is almost like having written it myself. I know what you mean, so much. Do take care, keep positive x

I am sorry for your pain. You seem like an honest, loving person who believes in love and accepting people for who they are. I think you have done everything you can do to save this marriage. If your husband doesn't see the the whole, big picture of life then I feel sorry for him. You have been working on yourself and that is key, I must take my own advice and do the same, you deserve to be loved the way you give love, I wish you all the best in the future , take care.