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Separated from my wife

Community Member
I have been separated from my wife for 5 months. I am devastated. We have 2 teenage children together. We were married for 11.5 years but together for 23 years. We had the usual ups and downs an arguments to me that was a normal marriage. This weekend is our 12 wedding anniversary. I am not coping at all. I talked to her 3 weeks ago that I would love to try again and she said that all we could be was good friends. She explained to me that we just grew apart and our marriage become stagnant. I went to counselling and I believe I am a better person. My youngest (15) is not coping at all. Like me he wants it to be worked out. I see my kids every weekend and when me and her are together we get on fine like nothing has happened. This week has been hard as she told me that she has submitted the legal separation papers. I have had 2 break downs at work and my boss who is also a friend has had a talk with me and given me some time off just to relax and find myself. I love her with all my heart and always will. She is my world and my first love. I cannot imagine my life without her by my side. Only a few people know about our separation. Everyday I cry and think about what have could of been. I cannot get her out of my mind. I know I’m not in a good place but my feelings for her will never change. Both of us have no intention of meeting anyone to start dating. I know life must go on and I have to respect her decision but how can you when you know the marriage could have been fixed. She is my world my rock and my best friend. I just can’t let go.
22 Replies 22

Community Member

G'day Leigh

Yours is not an uncommon story. Like you, I also though my marriage was rock solid; after 30+ years who wouldn't.

If you spend some time on this forum you will see this same story over and over again. I can't explain why, but for some reason one spouse gets board with the marriage and stops trying to make it work.

Sometimes the decision to separate is clearly defined and justified; other times there is no obvious reason for the separation. One spouse is simply not interested in trying to fix the problem, assuming there was a problem in the first place. It could very well be that you were not the problem, just the excuse.

In regard to your separation, to my knowledge, there is no such thing as "legal separation papers". Perhaps you meant that she has started "property settlement" proceedings with her lawyer. If that is the case, she is running towards a divorce. You will need to get your own legal advice if that is the case.

If you ever figure out why a good marriage falls apart, please let me know.

Stop blaming yourself!

Community Member
Thank you for your comment. I will never understand this situation and I know it is very common. Not so much separation papers but informed Centrelink of our separation. Maybe wrong choice of words. My mind is so messed up at the moment sometimes I don’t know what I’m saying.

Community Member

Hi Leigh

You a right in saying that you will never understand the situation. Sometimes there is no rime or reason for the breakup. I've been looking for a reason for 12 months; I still don't have a satisfactory reason.

Are you getting some professional help from a phycologist? I didn't find them particularly helpful, but you might if you a breaking down at work.

If you are having problems with sleep and anxiety (and your probably are) you might want to visit your doctor. He or she will most likely prescribe an antianxiety medication. It will made a huge difference to your quality of life. I know it helped me a lot.

Just a few thoughts that might be of some assistance!

Community Member
Thank you for your advice and I definitely will be going to my doctor for a chat. I was seeing a counsellor for ages and it just seemed we were going around in circles and it didn’t help at all. The breakdowns are usually from just being away from my family and knowing I will never be her husband again. I just can’t control my feelings for her unless I am around her then I am fine. Then I leave after my weekend visit and break down again. I never dreamed this would happen

Community Member

I know exactly where you are coming from. Unfortunately, she does not feel the same way at this point in time.

Perhaps a little time apart will change things for the better. Sometimes people do not realise what they have until it's gone. A few months down the track she might realise that the marriage is worth saving. The grass may not be as green as she thinks.

I agree about the counsellors, I found them to be less than helpful. I thought it was just me.


Community Member
I hope every day that will happen bud. But I know her too well so I really don’t think so. But I look at her life now and can see it’s no better without me there. Nothing has changed. That’s what hurts. My kids are miserable and I have even had her sister say to me what is the point of this separation nothing has changed. But we are great when we are together. It’s going to see her this weekend as it’s our anniversary. I guess I will try to help it together.

Hi, welcome

some very accurate and valuable comments thus far,

Your grief period can’t be quelled without time. What can help is distraction. After 8 weeks following my separation I bought a block of land (regional area) and bought a kit home, worked and extra job etc. too tired then to think about the situation.

Another but of advice I got was to realise kids are more resilient than us parents. Sure they hurt but they are cared for.

will you recover-yes, will you see things clearer one day- yes especially if you find another partner

In a few short years your children will be driving to your place for visits. Make them as comfortable as you can with some very basic boundaries and they’ll love coming and going.

please place these thread topics in the space bar at the top

Distraction and variety

the best praise you’ll ever get

meditation, he helped me for 25 years-Maharaji

Take care and reply as often as you like in those threads or here.


Thanks for your reply. I do try and distract my self by doing various activities by it always comes back to haunt me. I know I will have my kids forever but my youngest is really battling with it after 5 months and it kills me when I hear his pain. I have no ambitions to find another partner as my love for her will never change. I know this might sound stupid but every day I fall more in love with her and I can’t understand why. I am sick of the black dog chasing me every day.

Hey mate my wife recently left me but we were only together two years, but I feel your pain and no how upsetting and hard life can seem.

It does appear that your relationship was just cruising along, more of a friendship or partnership in the end? Is that fair to say?

I guess what I'm realising myself now is that, is it really fair on someone to stay with a person because they share children? Everyone deserves to be loved and happiness but if it's not there then maybe it is best for the marriage to finish.

I have children too mate so I know how hard it can be for them