My Wife Is Moving Out

My wife told me in October that she was unhappy with her life. She felt she couldn't be a good wife or mother without fixing herself. I asked her to stay and she did. We started counseling, both individually and together. I thought things were improving. Our marriage counselor even suggested we meet less frequently.

Then my son, 5, told me about going over to a friends house to play. It was her boss's kids house. She never told me she was spending any time there. She admitted going to the zoo together too. It ended up in a huge fight. She claimed she didn't tell me because I would get mad. She was right. I am jealous of this man. Just a feeling, but I have seen her smile when he walks into the room when I visit her at work. He has turned a profitable company into a money loser and she defends him and comments about how hard his job must be. I own and operate a small business that is doing very well now and she has never once told me she is proud of my accoplishments. Doubled sales in a construction business in 5 years in the worst economy in 70 years. I don't believe there is an affair there, he is married but he and his wife are struggling. They live about 3 hours apart and usually only see each other on weekends. She claims it is simply a friendship between a man and a woman who are going through similar things with kids that go to the same school. I have asked her point blank if there is anything there and she swears no, that it is only secret because I get mad when she talks about him. She is right there.

At her request, she has decided to move out. She is getting an apartment with a six month lease. She says she wants to fix herself so she can fix her marriage. She doesn't think she can fix herself at home. She is borderline depressed, the doctor suggests medication, the counselor suggests none at least not yet. She is beautiful, 5'5" and 130 pounds. She thinks she is fat and ugly.

Neither of our individual counselors think separations are good things but both admit that they sometimes work. But everyone has to be pulling for the marriage not trying divorce. It is going to happen February 1. We have discussed all of the ground rules. While she is gone, she will pay for the things that are increasing our cost of living, rent, electric, gas. I have agreed to pay all the joint bills for a period of six months. I want to punish her for leaving but it will only hurt the kids and why would she ever want to come back if I was hurting her more? She was my best friend and now I'm struggling with finding people to share my pain with. I don't want this separation, but I do want my wife. It is so hard to make it through the day alone and even harder to make it through the night with her still sleeping a foot away from me.

If this works, it would be worth all the pain to keep my wife and family together. I am having a very time convincing myself she wants to get back together in the end. I have two choices today, believe her and work toward saving my marriage by letting her go or don't believe her let her go and know my marriage is over. Both options suck because she is leaving either way. For now I'm going to believe her that she wants this to work and am going to put everything I can muster into trying to make this work.

I am looking for support and stories from people who have tried separation and it has worked for them. I need ideas about how to find a support structure while she is gone. All I do is work and go home. I am probably broken too, I know a lot of our problems are my own doing.

I know this is long. Thanks for reading.
Dakota06 Dakota06
36-40, M
2 Responses Jan 24, 2013

She is definitely involved in an emotional affair that I suspect has turned physical. I confronted my hubby with his emotional affair in March 2008. After 8 months of counseling, a 3 week trial separation was suggested. I went back home to GA with our child while he remained in PA. We were in divorce court in PA yesterday. I'm actually on the road back to GA. He chose his co-worker ***** over his family. Don't pay her bills while she's screwing her boss with her clothes off (body image issues seem to dissipate during affairs). Cut her loose. I'm sorry for your pain, but don't play the fool like I have.

Wow. Sounds like a story of a woman i know.. very similar.. except that i am also a friend of the "boss" character, and he told me they had already had an affair a year ago and decided later to try turning it down a notch to avoid getting caught. And while her husband is trying to deal with the emotional and logistic pressures of her moving out, she is actually sneaking around online when he is asleep, when he is at work, with some very involved cyber affairs.. all while maintaining the story that she really needs to leave to fix/tend to herself so she can heal the relationship.
Now in my story, i only wish i had a way to contact her husband to warn the poor guy who is still considering fighting for her despite his growing suspicions (as shes told me).
In your story, i sure hope you check that her project to fix herself isnt code for doing whatever the hell she wants while you wait around in case she changes her mind (or cyberlovers or "boss" get fed up with her etc).
Sure, a little distance may make the heart grow fonder, as in maybe a day or two in different rooms or at a relatives to think things over.. but seperation is pushing it to the point of neglect and building up on the walls and making them even harder to get through.
If she acknowledges shes broken, and you acknowledge youre broken, then it would seem more helpful and hopeful to me to make small but consistent steps towards helping each other build each other up. Doesnt sound like shes on that page if she insists leaving is best for the relationship. Oh and by the way, is she taking yoir son with her?? In my story, she is leaving her kids with the husband because its "better for them that way"... mhmm.

We are splitting custody of the kids. She wants them, another reason I have hope. I don't believe she is in a physical relationship in anyway. Her body image issues have caused issues in our sex life for years. It may be an emotional affair, but those are hard to define- where is the line? She is tired all the time so I don't think she is sneaking around at night. Another issue we have had over the years as I am more of a night owl. I do wish if somebody knew something they would tell me. I know a lot of the coworkers as we are in related industries an we refer a lot of work back and forth. I may have my head in the sand, but if I don't let her go, she will leave anyway and then instead of working together we are fighting with each other. I fear you are right but I hope I am right. It is still to new to me to get to where you think might be.

I really do hope that her intentions to seperate as a way to fix things are true. Sounds to me like you are humble enough to acknowledge any issues that you might have contributed to getting to this stage; that in itself is admirable and writing here both show your genuine concerns for doing your part in finding a solution.
I just hope that my post and the one from "the cheatedon" help you somehow keep your eyes open for any substantial signs that there is something wrong going on.
This might be really foolish advice, but i imagine if a coworker did know something you were unaware of, they would keep their mouth shut unless you nudged them for info.

Im thinking about what you said regarding your jealousy. Sure, it can become frustrating, even supressive when it us overbearing and consistently ungrounded, but i dont think youre unfairly being "jealous" if she constantly gloats about this boss and never has any similar words of admiration to offer you, her husband. idont think its justificatiin to go behind your back with him , physical or not (and yea, where DOES that emotional line get drawn), because you would be jealous. Because duh, now youre jealous AND less trusting, rightfully so. I think a lot of people dont appreciate that jealousy in moderation is a sign of protectiveness and passion. It gets a bad rep too often. I do wish you the best of luck and hope youre venting helps you observe your own feelings with a higher awareness.

I am trying to be objective and rational in my thinking about this whole situation. I am jealous but her explanations are reasonable if you took them in vacuum. I am the one that is piling all these things together and questioning at what point 1 +1 = 2. Jealousy won't save my marriage which is what I want. This whole thing is extremely painful. I have to choose whether to let her go amicably, trust her and hope that chooses to come back or let her go with a lot of conflict, not trust her and prepare for divorce. Either way I'm going to be hurt and she is going to leave. I feel like I have to allow myself to be hurt in order to have any chance of reconciling. She has agreed to counseling, she has agreed to my ground rules regarding the split, she wants to continue the weekly date nights we started in October per the counselors, she wants to ride together to out of town hockey games for the boys. She seemed genuinely touched that I didn't try to stick it to her when we discussed finances. The only thing we really ever argue about is this boss and the boundaries for their relationship. I don't feel that would take advantage of me after all these years. She has always felt a little guilty that I provide most of the income though I have never held that over her head. She contributes more than money to our family, things you can't buy. I love her and want her back but damn this jealousy. It is an evil emotion. It makes you think the worst and sometimes it is not the case. Unfortunately sometimes it is. It is just so hard to figure out which way to feel because I have no proof.

I think your decision to let her go amicably is a wise one, especially when you know the alternative is that she will keave anyway (just with a much more negative scenario as you said). But i also think its a good idea because you deserve that self respect; youve already been clear about your intentions of wanting the marriage to work, and have been a gentleman about the finances while shes living away, so letting the ball go to her court with your dignity intact sounds like a good idea. It is hard to feel reassured when youve got so many questions racing through your mind, but how she proceeds from here on will go a long way in giving you some proof of where she stands, one way or the other.

Thank you for the kind words.

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