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How Do You Leave A Thirty Year Marriage?!

I am being totally open and honest here.

We will be "celebrating" our 30th wedding anniversary this December and I have not been happy or in love with him for over 5 years!
I have told him on several occasions how I feel and I am not involved with another man, but think about it often.

There have been a series of negative events that have occurred over these last few years which has lead me to realize that I  no longer
have any feelings of love or respect for this man. Yet I feel that I have so much love and life to give to "someone". I don't want to spend the second half of my life alone, but want to share myself, body and soul with a man who will love and respect me!

We have remained together for financial reasons, and because we feel that our decision to separate or divorce would be difficult for our four children.
I know I am not the only woman out there who is in this situation.

I am healthy, fun loving, attractive, well educated and have a wonderful sense of humor! Would love to correspond with others who can may want to connect with a 50 year old, who feels 30 and,  OK ... looks 40 !

Anybody (no men who live in their parent's basement and spend the day on the computer please) want to talk!?

Lonely but hopeful
missdefiance missdefiance 46-50, F 9 Responses Sep 2, 2011

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I am a woman in the same situation your story sounds like me-you are not the only one but I would like to connect with a male companion

hi all
just an update from me. It is now 6 months since I left and struck out on my own.
And on my own is where I am at the moment. And I am very happy.
I am making my own decisions and taking my own choices.
Yes there are times when I am lonely and would love a hug and a cuddle and someone to watch a film with but I am sure that will come in time.
I am now very comfortable in my own skin. My confidence has soared, I have lost weight and feel a million dollars.
I havent had a lot of 'offers' but I have been told by one male friend that exude 'unattenability' and would frighten most men off. But that doesnt bother me.
I dont want to get into that at the moment, if anything were to happy that would be great.

And my work colleague who has been such a good friend to me is still just that. We are there for each other though which is important.

Have the strength to do what you feel is right for you. I spent too many years doing what was right for everyone else.

Now is my time

Good luck to all xxx

Thank you for sharing your experience. You give me hope. I'm not sure when it happened, there was no watershed moment, just a gradual realization, like a fog burning off in the morning light. I realize now I will not celebrate a 40th anniversary with this man. When he asks "what do you want from me?" my reply is always the same, "love, affection, and protection." There is nothing worse than being out with him, other men making rude passes at me, and my spouse looking the other way. He never has my back, whether the circumstances are related to work, family or social events. I am now leaning out, making plans to move to another city. First the job, then a place to live, then on with my life. I really am tired of supporting his lifestyle. I'm tired of paddling fiercely over the rapids only to find him in the back of the boat with his oar in the water "steering". He almost convinced me I am unlovable. I work long hours and volunteer. I am very outgoing and enjoy being around people and other living things. People make me happy. I'm a natural giver. Then he makes me feel judged, watched, shamed and uncomfortable, as if we are in some bizarre competition. I can never measure up with this person. It will take courage but I know in my heart there is a bright door at the end of this dim hallway.

I have been married for 28 years this September and met him in the 8th grade. He has had a drinking and partying problem since we first married. I made exuses for it for the way he was raised then he quit for 5 years which were the best ever. Then a devastational thing happened to our little girls and he started drinking again and has ever since. He has almost killed himself in his vehicle and had multiple DUI's. We have two adult children with their own kids and one that will graduate high school in 3 years. I have stayed mainly because I had hope he would pull his head out of his *** and for the kids but just recently have found myself wanting to feel loved again. I feel like I have spent that last 8 years taking care of everyone of his needs and neglected me. But feel guilty for even feeling that way. I am an attractive woman and have had men make advances but brushed them off but now am wondering if I should try it. I am an independent woman with a career so I can take care of myself out there but my fear is for our child at home. I have always been the glue that held us all together as a strong team. My older girls have told me to leave awhile now but I think if it came down to it it would devastate them. I cant imagine the next 28 years of this. I want to not worry about it when we go places that he is gonna end up drunk, I want to see things that I havent been able to due to taking care of everyone else all the time. Scared and uncertain and feel like life is flying by. He recently decided after another one of his binges that its time to stop but then again any kind of stress or unease and he has to have it! Damn it I have been dealing with this same stress all these years without any kind of stimulant, then this just adds to it!

Its makes a difference knowing that you arent the only one that going thru this. I am 50 in 24 days time and 'celebrate' my 28th wedding anniversary in 10 days...... and I told my husband 4 days ago I need to leave.<br />
He was absolutely devastated, even though for the last 12 months he has been saying to me, you're so unhappy whats wrong? But he never actually listened to the answer.<br />
My husband is agoraphobic, has been since he was 14yrs old. So I should have known what I was getting into when we married but I didnt at all. Over the years, he has become more controlling, stopping meeting friends, having friends back to the house, belittling my work, basically removing my life and self esteem from me<br />
Like so many I have stuck around for my sons sake, but hes at university now and is old enough to understand fully. Fortunately after an initial tirade of 'I cant believe you are being so selfish' he has realised that I am doing the right thing for me.....not necessarily right for him or his dad - but I need to start living my life.<br />
What has complicated matters is I started working with this guy about 14 months ago. We had a real connection right from the start, but gradually over the months I realised that I was developing really strong feelings for him.<br />
He is in a relationship so I knew that they was no way he would be interested in me and hey - I'm 50 who's going to look at me twice??<br />
But then I started opening up to him about my home life, he talked me thru talking to my husband and trying to sort things out. He did everything he could to make me want to stay married. But once I told him that it wasnt fair on my husband, (I cant stay knowing that I have stronger feelings for someone else than I do him - its deceitful) and I would be leaving then he told me he had feelings for me and once I'm ready he would like to get closer to me.<br />
From the outside people are going to think I left my husband for this man. People at work have commented on how well we seem to get on but everyone knows that good old me is happy married and he has a stunningly beautiful younger woman on his arm.<br />
But I dont give a damn about what people think in the long run - it might be uncomfortable for a short while but if its a chance of happiness and a full life no one is stopping me!

Hi, I am 51 and very unhappy. My husband had an alcohol problem for many years, and it has brought us a lot of problems. I have had to listen to a lot of insults and never got the feeling that I was loved. <br />
We moved to a different country, I agreed because I thought that would make him a happier person, but it didn't. He stopped drinking 3 years ago, and has changed, now all he ever talks about is work. He is a very bright man, and self employed. We never seem to talk about anything else than work and the kids. I am not important at all. <br />
He also wants to emigrate again, after 14 years. he travels a lot and doesn't socialize here at all, while I have settled and have my own circle of friends. I don't want to move again.<br />
My children would be devastated if we separated, and I think he would not let them get in the way of his work. <br />
We have very little money as a result of his drinking years so I would not have anything if I left. He made me stay at home. I haven't worked for 15 years now. Also I have had breast cancer 6 years ago, and still suffer a lot of pain from the operation, I was a nurse a long time ago, but I couldn't do that physical work any more.<br />
Maybe it's the peri-menopauze, but I feel very depressed. My first child has gone to college and I miss him a lot, which doesn't help.<br />
As you can see, there is a lot going on in my life, too much to handle sometimes.<br />
I am happy to see that I'm not alone, and maybe we could just try and make each other feel a little better about ourselves.

These postings have resonated with me. I am also in a 31 year marriage; about 20 years ago I began realizing that my marriage was not working for me, I wasn't sure I loved him anymore but I stayed for the children. I know now that was a mistake. My youngest child just graduated from college and I am still here, out of fear of how to start over and for financial reasons. I am always depressed. Life is too short to live like this and I know that intellectually, but I cannot seem to make the move to get out. My age might preclude me from working (61) and I just feel my life slipping away. I would love to communicate with other people in the same predicament.

I empathize with you and would love talk you.

I hear you on the staying together for the kids, finances and convience. I was doing the same thing for more than 20 years. Then I made the mistake of looking for someone else before I ended my marriage. Don't make that mistake. Keep yourself honest and if you need to get out..than get out first. Life goes by too fast and we all need some good loving to get us through. 30 years is a long time but 50 is young!

I understand exactly how you feel. We will be married 36 years in November. He is the only man I have ever been with and I have fallen out of love with him. He has a lot of health issues that make sex impossible for him. I, like you, still feel like I am 30 and I have needs that are not being met. I want to find someone so bad who can hold me, hug me and make love to me. Somoeone who will make me feel totally loved. I have lived through abuse most of our marriage. First it was physical abuse and that ended when the last time he beat me he tried his best to kill me. I had to have him arrested in order to get my kids out of the house. I ended up bruised head to toe and suffered brokens ribs and knots on my head. So now he is confined to a lift chair and if I try to talk to him he yells at me, degrades me, calls me names, so now I have verbal and emotional abuse to deal with. I am so done but I just don't know how to walk out on 36 years of marriage. For my own sanity I really need to. Hope you find your way out. I am still looking mine. Best wishes to you.

Hey Teri,
I read your story and am so sorry that your married life has been so unhappy. I must say that the first 20 years of marriage worked for both of us, but within the last 5 years, I feel no love or respect for him. There was a lot of verbal abuse and alcoholic behavior that lead to my current feelings of "nothingness" for him. I have also come to realize that I am worth so much and that life is too short to continue to live with a man who I don't love or respect.
I can only offer my encouragement as you continue to live in this awful marriage. I know that a sense of obligation keeps you with this man, but that can be a self-imposed emotional prison that you feel "confortable" with no matter how wrong the situation. Put him in a assisted living facility or with one of HIS relatives, and get on with YOUR life girlfriend! I know that is easier said than done, but you are the only one who can get yourself out. Don't wait for outside circumstances to change, make the changes within yourself! What you want DOES matter!! He is not concerned with your happiness, only his personal care and comfort. I quess I've said enough for now.
Sorry if I come on too strong, but you have got to be your own best friend and DO SOMETHING to move yourself towards independence from this sad marriage!!
Take care.