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My wife is moving out and wants everything - including me but not me yet..

Community Member

Hi all

Pretty baffled at the minute any guidance would be greatly appreciated.

4 years ago my wife and I got married we had been together for 2 years prior. When We got married I had a tough time with many personal emotions catching up with me and I essentially broke down and scraped the bottom of the barrel for about a year or 2. During this time I certainly was difficult to be around and my wife carried the family both emotionally and financially until I crawled out of my hole. The past 2 years I have worked incredibly hard on myself and gathered my life together again and am emotionally strong and a much better human than I was. We have been to counselling and I owned all my mistakes and have really come out the other side. There was no infidelity or anything like this just a tough emotional time for myself. My wife and our children even had many fun family holidays recently and I we were even quite intimate with each other and she told me I was the best husband and father to our children (now) ....until about a month ago and BANG it all changed. That's it she is leaving. She moved into the spare room and said she needed space and told me she was finally starting to process all the bad stuff from 4 years ago and she didn't want to be mean or vindictive towards me and thought that a fresh start would help us strip back our marriage and rebuild it on the right fundamentals. Hopefully falling in love again and getting back together..... Now whilst I can see this as sweet and long term a great goal and I am approaching this with a VERY open mind. What gets me is she wants her share of the house in cash - meaning I pull out the cash and give it to her so she can buy her own place and take the kids with her and she wants me to help her run the kids around whenever she can't make it.

The whole idea is that when she moves out she hopes she will miss me and learn how to depend on me again whilst we start dating again. . .

Now I know the intentions are there to fix our marriage and the goal is happiness together when we are old, not bitterness or resentment and I am bending over backwards to help accommodate her wants and needs but I really feel like I am getting the short end of the stick here. . Do I want my wife back? Yes. extending my mortgage so she can buy a house and take the kids and then have me at beck and call? hmmm do I just let her go and hope she comes back? or do I just cut it now and divorce. . ?

8 Replies 8

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member
Hi Malcolm, it sounds like you have a lot going on right now. If you are not 100% about something I don't think you should go through with it - look into other options. Have a sit down and explain what you've mentioned here, that you think you're getting the short end of the stick. Perhaps you could meet in the middle - maybe she could rent a new place for some time before buying something else - which may not be the best move financially (in fact it's not a great move financially at all). I definitely think talk it through with her (and perhaps a lawyer) before deciding to do anything major like purchasing a new home.

Community Member

Hi malcominthemiddle,

I'm sorry you are in this position, it certainly is a strange suggestion for resolving a marriage problem from years ago, that seems to already be resolved. I understand why you feel confused.

Just to add to Jessica's excellent advice, I'm an `actions speak loudest' kind of person, and in your position I would want a few more assurances that the separation was for the purpose of improving your marriage. Otherwise, her actions look like she's separating, and wants the best deal she can get . Call me cynical, but it just looks that way from her actions.

I think it would be reasonable to talk more about exactly what work you will both be doing on your marriage, before you make any financial agreements. Will there be couples councilling, and is she actively receiving counselling for processing your past? Has there been a time frame mentioned for this processing? Will you be dating other people? If it were me, and I wasn't getting straight answers that convinced me, I'd be treating it as a `separation but with hope', and try to protect myself financially, if not emotionally.

Community Champion
Community Champion

hello malcominthemiddle,

That's a really tough situation to be in and it sounds very confusing.

Like Jessica and Bindi have said, it is probably a good idea to just put the brakes on a decision right now until you can get more information.

To add to their questions, it is also not clear to me what exactly her current issue is. Has she specifically said what is troubling her and causing her to just want to leave? Why does she need space?

Also, aside from the financial issues, is there a clear and balanced arrangement with the kids and visitation?

I think it would be unfair to have a separation in all practical senses of the word, without any protection for you financially and emotionally (re your kids).


I think once you’ve actually physically separated from each other, the chances of saving the marriage are greatly reduced. So either she’s willing to work on the marriage or she leaves with the understanding that the marriage is over.

First things first though I highly recommend you obtain legal advice regarding your position. Don’t tell her just do it. If You do separate, you also need to have a written agreement about care arrangements for your children. Whatever you do don’t agree to some casual arrangement. You need to both agree on exactly what happens and when.

First and foremost legal advice. You can often get a free 30 min consult with most family lawyers. Keep your cool and stay present for your children, they’ll be needing you.

i agree with James. Have arrangements in place so you don’t get done over. You haven’t really said what the issue with her is but it sounds like she’s been cooking this plan up for a while.

ive been through it so I’m happy to talk more about it. But I will reiterate, the most valuable things you can do are to get legal advice, stay cool and calm, don’t do anything until you’ve got the care arrangements you want with your children and be there for them

Firstly thank you to everyone who has responded, all your words are soaking in.... just to clarify as Apollo Black asked; her issue with me is the person I used to be when we got married. I had issues back then with my past and I was just difficult to be around - add to that I had no work for about 3 years so the financial burden she carried was immense also. These are all reasons I can understand but like others on this thread I find odd that it's all coming out now. . . Now I am a better person with a better attitude and with full time employment wouldn't this be the best time to figure it out?!

Maybe she has cooked it up for a while. . . ??? Look either way I am truly grounded in who I am and assured that no matter what way it goes I am going to be ok. Sad yes of course but I will be ok. . . and she isn't vindictive enough to keep the kids away from me. . . Look to be honest we even had a valentines date together! and we have counselling this week!!! BUT SHE IS STILL MOVING OUT hahahhaa I am so confused by the mixed signals she sends that I am now starting to switch off, which I didn't want to do. I still love my wife and want us to work it out but she is really pushing to move out and get her own place.

We both agree that we don't want to be in a love and sexless marriage as life is short and we are both mid 30's and I guess the best reasoning she can give me is she doesn't want to feel trapped in a house and marriage and build years of resentment and anger towards me until we end up like her parents - just old and bitter at each other all the time but still married. Now that I can understand but the thing that gets me is she is doing all of these things (in a bid to remove anything that will cause us to argue??- her words) and then still send me lovely text messages and say things like she is scared to do this incase I fall in love with someone else whilst we are apart.....(then don't move out???) I don't know what she wants, is this the 7 year itch? is this normal in every young marriage? can someone please send me the rule book??

*I am very calm, unemotional and incredibly collected as many of my friends have noted and I attribute that to working on myself the past two years with professional help and finding clarity, maturity and sense a sense of direction I lacked a few years ago. just don't know if I should fully let it go and move on and remain friends or fight to stay married. Even now during this tough time we are great mates haha URGH

Thanks for keeping us updated Malcom, No I don't think this is normal, and it sounds a bit fishy to me. In fact I think trying to hold a marriage together without a strong foundation of committment is far more likely to lead to the resentment and bitterness she said she fears. And as she's noted, the trust between you will be down the drain pipe too. Its very hard for a marriage to progress and deepen if those two elements are taken out of the relationship.

Perhaps one way to tackle the situation is to finalize the separation as if it were permanent. And then see how it goes afterwards. There's no reason for any of it to be nasty, its just good sense to protect yourself at this point.

I say fight for your marriage. Sit down together and write up your dreams, your goals and ask her to forgive you for that time you let her down, the time she carried all the weight for you both. And thank her for sticking by you then.

Please don’t give up on her, she just sounds frightened and confused to me and perhaps not seeing the logical things very well as emotions are speaking louder at this time. Some women are like that, including myself.

Win her heart back and fight together for the kind of marriage you both want.

Hey Malcom,

Thank you for sharing. I agree with Bindi - something seems not quite right there. This should be a time for you both to emotionally grow together and get your relationship stronger, work through everything - together. I can only say this based on what you’ve said.

It sounds like you both need to reflect on what it is that you truly want, who you want to be and what is best for you both (fighting for your marriage or moving forward).

Also, I want to say well done for taking the time to work on yourself and get yourself to a point in your life where you are proud of the progress you’ve made.

J x