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Seperated After 15 Years

My username pretty much explains exactly how I feel. I am completely heartbroken and I don't know what to do about it. I'm not sure where to start but I guess I'll start by saying that my husband and I were high school sweethearts with us dating on and off from the time I was 14 through 16. At 16 we broke up and I actually was with someone else and got pregnant by another guy. That guy ended up leaving me very early in the pregnancy and my husband basically rescued me and my son by stepping up and telling me that he still loved me and would be a father to my child even though he wasn't his biologically. Sounds like a great guy, right? Well, I thought so and we got married 1 month before my son was born and we have been together ever since. We ended up having another child and adopted 2 more children about 7 years ago as they were family members who were in a very bad situation. This man has spent our entire marriage declaring that there is absolutely nothing more important to him than our family. He told me he loved me every single day, swore that I was the love of his life and he couldn't imagine life without me in it. Then last March I noticed all of a sudden that he was acting very differently. After about 3 weeks of this behavior I asked him if he was having an affair. He denied it but was not very convincing so of course I decided to do some snooping. I ended up finding out that he had been talking to a girl from work and it didn't sound like harmless talking. I confronted him that day and to my complete shock he admitted he had been talking to her and had feelings for her. He actually started packing his bags which completely confused me as up until a few weeks before this I had always been the love of this man's life. After a lot of talking he ended up deciding to stay and put this girl behind him. A few weeks later we ended up finding out that I was pregnant with our now 5th child. This was a complete surprise as we were not trying to get pregnant and I actually looked at this as God's way of showing us that we really are meant to be together. Apparently that was not the case for my husband. I had a terrible headache 1 night in July and decided to call him at work as he worked nights and just wanted to hear his voice. Well, when I called I was told that he wasn't working that night. Of course, that's when I realized that he was having a full blown affair and had been lying to me for months. I ended up calling him AND her on their cell phones until I got a hold of him and told him to come get his stuff out of our house because it was over. A couple days later I ended up letting him come back home because I've never really believed in divorce and with a baby on the way I would have done anything to make things work. We ended up going through him leaving and coming back a few days later 2 more times before this last seperation. He left on September 19th and we are still not back together. I know it sounds crazy and everyone tells me I deserve so much better but I miss him so much. I had our baby girl at the beginning of January and he is actually sleeping on my couch for the 6 weeks he has off on paternity leave to help me with her and also to bond with her. We have managed to keep a friendly relationship for the kids sake but I am starting to really struggle with how bad all of this has hurt. You have to understand that ever since he left he has stated that he's not sure what he wants. He basically says that he has feelings for this other girl but he still loves me. He said he would come home to try to fix the marriage but he's afraid he'd end up hurting me again and he can't stand to do that to me again. I have tried numerous times to tell him that he should just be with her because I can't stand living in limbo wondering if he's ever going to choose me over that woman but he always says he doesn't know if that's what he wants. He told me today that he is scared because he's never been an indecisive person and he doesn't know why he can't just do the right thing in this situation. He says I'm the only woman he ever loved and he just doesn't understand how he could feel so strongly about someone who isn't me, basically that this other girl must be really special if he could do this to me and that's why he hasn't been able to just let go. I personally have a lot of things that I think about this other girl and special is not a term I would use for her. She knew he was married, she knew I was pregnant with our 5th child, and she even told me that she was going to stay away from him and then continuously kept contacting him. I know that my husband is as much to blame for all of this as she is but I just don't understand how women can do this to other women. Especially knowing that I was pregnant! I guess I am posting this story hoping that someone can help me through this terrible heartbreak. I have been hurting for so long and I don't know how to move past it. I try to let go of my husband but I hate the idea of all 5 of my kids growing up without both parents in the home. I should also mention that we were so happy before he met her. Even he says that he was happy, that's why he doesn't understand why he did what he did and also why he can't seem to let the other girl go. But, he also doesn't seem to want to let me go either! Do I just give up???? I just don't know what to do anymore or where to go from here.
heartbroken32 heartbroken32 31-35 2 Responses Jan 26, 2013

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The part of your story that really caught me was the part about your husband not wanting to hurt you again. The reason this spoke to me is because I have felt that way. It isn't so much as being selfish as it is him stating he doesn't have self control. The fact is, he is confused about what to do and by you not moving on he isn't forced to move on either. As bad as you may want your old life back, it's just not going to happen. Even if he came back, he has already proven that you are not enough for him. This isn't to say that anything is wrong with you but to say that you two just aren't going to work. I am sorry to be so blunt but I know how this goes. Do yourself a favor and look for what will make you happy. There are a lot of good guys out there that will love you regardless of your situation. Hell I have 3 kids and the love of my life has 4, we both have baggage but we love each other all the same. Trust me, life gets better with time and an open mind. Life is too short, so why not be happy?

Thanks for giving your honest opinion. I really do appreciate any feedback even if it's tough to hear. The hard part for me is that i have told my husband over and over again that i am done and going to try to move on and he always tells me that he won't stop me because he doesn't feel he has a right to given what he has done. But he also tells me that he really doesn't want me to be with someone else yet. He thinks seeing me with someone will kill him and he actually said that he thinks that might be what he needs to snap out of his confusion. He even said that if that does happen he will fight to win me back if it does make him realize what he's losing. It's just really odd because i have told him to just be with the other girl but he won't say that he is going to do that. I just don't understand why he continues to hold on to me if I'm not what he wants anymore. He even saw a counselor and the only thing he could come up with that bothered him about me is that I'm to good and sometimes he finds that hard to live up to. Other than that he says that our marriage was perfect, or as close to perfect as one can be. That's what makes the idea of moving on so hard. I know we'll never be able to have what we had before this happened, but i find it hard to imagine that i could ever find that level of happiness that i had with anyone else. Maybe that's because I've really never been with anyone else being that I've been with him since i was 14! Maybe in time i will have it all figured out because right now my head is just spinning from all the mixed signals!

He is selfish, as I was. It may be hard to imagine what your life will be like without him but how is it right now with him like this? He will continue this as long as he can because he gets both of his needs met. On one had he has his family, safe and sweet. On the other, he has his girlfriend who he can be wild and free with. He doesn't see in his mind that those two things can ever over lap. My wife is the best mother and caregiver ever, however, our marriage is in no way exciting. She sees me as the father to our kids, never the wild guy I am in side. Which I am not all that wild but it is nice to let your hair down every now and then and do something crazy. No matter how often I begged her to occasionally adventurous or spontaneous, in ANY way, she just wouldn't or couldn't. It drove a huge crack between us and I found that if I wanted that excitement I was never going to get it at home. The horrible truth is that we had a better marriage when I was cheating than when I wasn't. Mainly because I wasn't harping her for my needs to be met. The downside came when I fell in love with my mistress and decided I didn't want to live two lives anymore. I know this is all a bit much but I am trying to help you get into the mind of your husband. There is no fix to your problem. He will continue to sit on the fence until you are gone. If you take him back he will do it again as soon as he feels like you loosen your grip. I am telling you this from experience, the only path that will lead you to happiness is without him. I'm sorry. Oh and by the way, have you ever noticed every marriage councilor is either divorced or re-married? Don't listen to these guys, they will just make things worse. Life is too short, so why not be happy?

Almost sounds like my situation, but my husband isn't seeing someone else, but there was an affair when I was pregnant. And, now he's telling me he doesn't want to hurt me again...selfish excuse if you ask me. I just feel he wants freedom for a year are so, but I can't stay in limbo. I say counseling and move forward with your life!

@strength2013- i almost feel that's what my husband is after. Time to have some freedom and when he's ready to settle back down he'll come back to me. He's told me countless times that he thinks it's possible that even if we do end it now that maybe later on we'll find our way back to eachother. I think he's just tired of all the daily responsibilities and this way he can pick and choose when he has to deal withit all. I think the attraction to the other girl is that she represents that freedom. It is definitely a completely selfish way to live your life. I really hate it but there's nothing that i can do about it other than hope it will get easier every day.