How Did I Get Here?

I guess I'm at a pretty low point.  I feel embarassed and ashamed to be putting this out there to the masses...most areas of my life are "under control".  I'm very successulf in my career and have been married 22 years.  But, I am so lonely, like nothing I've ever felt in my life.  My husband and I were married for 13 years before we had our first child.  When I was about 3 months pregnant I found out he was having an affair.  We went to marriage counselling and things seemed to get happier.  We decided to have a second child, and when I was 5 months pregnant, I found out he had continued the affair.  I found out when the other women showed up at my doorstep to tell me all about the other life he was leading.  At the time, I had just been promoted and we were relocating.  He told me he loved her.  Again, we went to counselling.  At the time, he was diagnosed with chronic depression and bi-polar disorder. 

Fast forward 6 years later.  He was busted for smoking pot in a random drug test at work and was put in a special program (he is a nurse).  I had surgery on my foot, and he took some of my pain meds and was busted again.  He went back to a rehab program (this was about 2 months ago). 

I just keep supporting him financially and emotionally.  He tells me that I seem mad all the time, and so it is my fault that things are the way they are.  I work, have to travel for my work, support the family financially, do most all the housework, and pay others to do what I can't do myself.  I am mad a lot of the time because most all of the responsibilities lie on my shoulders.  I wish I could have fun, but I don't know when that would happen...I don't have any time for me.

Regardless of being at a director level in a Fortune 100 company with a great income, I feel like a big fat loser.  No matter how hard I work, no matter how much I try to do with my kids, no matter how forgiving I believe I've been, no matter how successful I am in my career or the amount of money I make, I am so lonely.  I do not share any of this with friends and family.  Even reading my story makes me feel so pathetic.

I wish I could find someone to have an affair with, no strings attached, just to feel alive again.  And I know that is so crazy.  It's totally against my values, but I want to feel again.  He is such a great father, and we have such a great time together as a family.  Telling my children we are divorcing would be the worse thing I can imagine in life...even worse than being lonely.



dynamo2009 dynamo2009
41-45, F
7 Responses Jan 16, 2010

Hello. You are not a loser. Most of us, at one time or another, will find ourselves in difficult situations. You are the only one who can know what is the right thing for you to do. What is right for one person may not be right for another. My marriage recently fell apart, after almost 23 years. I kept the kids and the house, and decided to focus on my kids and my job. I will find time for a relationship later. Good luck to you, and remember: whatever you decide to do, it will be right for you.

I found that having a short affair opened my eyes to the fact that I couldn't go back to the status quo. I too was married to a man who wasn't working, took drugs (including mine when I had surgery), and blamed everything on me. It was hard to make the move but I finally divorced him and am very glad I did. Sure I have times when I am lonely and I am working on figuring out what my life looks like from here on out...but I have hope and I don't feel like I am carrying around a dead weight all the time. One day before I decided to leave, my husband was going on about how he couldn't wait for me to retire so we could be together all the time. I almost had a panic attack just thinking about it. <br />
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Our time spent together usually consisted of: if I was busy, him bugging me to spend time with him, him pointing out what I was doing wrong, what was wrong with me or what I had done to make him fail at whatever he was supposed to have been doing...if I dropped everything to spend time with him he flipped on the TV and promptly fell asleep. I became a complete work-aholic and put in for every project that would call for a lot of travel just to stay away from "home".<br />
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Now, all of us are different so I am not going to say you should do as I did. I will tell you that a friend gave me some advice that was very helpful to me and I hope it helps you too. She told me to make a pros and cons list just to focus my thoughts. You need to be honest about the good stuff as well as the bad. This helped me to see it all in black and white.<br />
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I will also say that when I announced my divorce most everyone was very positive and supportive. Those who were not were only marginal friends anyway. Of course I had not had children with this man so I can't speak to that experience.<br />
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Anyway, I hope this is helpful.

These comments are helpful. I guess just to know that others are going through similar experiences. The whole betrayal thing in a marriage really messes with you...self-worth and confidence are definitely impacted. I found an ex-boyfriend on facebook after I posted this. I haven't seen him in 26 years. We have talked once on the phone, and we've exchanged some posts. I find myself thinking about him constantly and wanting to hook up with him. He seems kind of non-chalent, and now I'm excited about seeing if he's posted something and checking constantly. I have told myself that I must not post anything or call him because I am feeling a bit obsessed and will probably scare him away. I don't know what the heck I'm thinking or what I'm doing. I teach Sunday school at Church and lead a Girl Scout troop, for goodness sakes. I know I have these marital issues, but I feel like I'm going through puberty again. I think I'm losing my mind!

Don't give it another thought. Just get on with it. Find someone to have some fun with, dinners, laughs and loads of sex. I am now 58 and I can promise you life is far too short to let yourself be bogged down in a realationship that is not giving you what you want.. Be thoroughly selfish!<br />
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You are only here once so do everything that you can to enjoy it. If he's messing up your life in a big way - get rid of him. Good luck, a brave confession. xx

I was in a loveless, sexless marriage for the last 16 of the 18 years. I stayed in it because of the kids. I had a business and gradually that became my mistress. All my time (and passion) poured into it. I fully supported my wife and 3 children. At the very end, with all the accumulated stress, I ended up having an angioplasty. It woke me up and I decided I needed to commit to serious changes in my life. I slowly attacked each of them. I tried to make the marriage work, but she wasn't interested. I saw a lawyer, but the financial cost of leaving the marriage frightened me. Finally, I got up the courage to have an affair. It gave me a friend and a lover. My heart was lighter. I felt alive again. Though it only lasted about a year, it helped with my sanity and made me a better person. My advice to you is to definitely have an affair. There is too much stress in your life now. It will only get worse. You may go through a guilt period - don't let it stop you. You can't love other people (your children) until you love yourself. Don't let anything stop you (friends, family, religion, etc). And, when you look for someone, go slowly. There are a lot of people out there who will take advantage of you - find someone with whom you can develop a bond. And, if you don't find anybody, I'm always available.

I can so relate to your story, i learn what loneliness is being married. about having an affair, with no strings attached, my religous belief states it is wrong, however if it happens would i i say no? absolutely not. like you i long to be alive again. hang in there, the positives good with family and you are a confident high achieving woman.

I can relate to your story and I truly feel for you, it's a lonely life. With that said, there is alot for you to be proud of. You say that you have a good time with the kids/family, you do have an impressive job/role, you are obviously a very driven confident lady to get to a director level role in a fortune 100 company. You need to find an outlet to talk about your feelings, perhaps a close friend, brother or sister you can talk with? A friend who's gone through a similiar situation? The NSA thing is very tempting, I've struggled with that path before but still haven't gone down that road. I'm sure the excitement would be short lived and add 1,000 more complications to life. Good luck.