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Need some advice
Hi all, I really need some guidance as i'm completely lost as to what to do.
A few days ago my wife told me that she is not in love with me anymore and that we should stop to pretending that we are not unhappy in our marriage.
She gave herself 12 months to decide whether we could be happy with each other or not.
To be honest i know what she is saying is the truth, neither of us have been happy at all for years now. But we kept on going for the sake of the kids and our own comfort. I feel i am no where near where she is in her head given how much time she has had to process it all.
We have both made individual efforts over the years to try and fix things, but we are both bad communicators and have never tackled the issues head on. Plus we both have issues with depression and anxiety and it seems like when one of us is good the other is bad.
She has already taken her wedding ring off and is sleeping in a separate bed, which i'm finding very degrading on my self worth already.
I have spoken to her about marriage counselling to see if there is anything we can do to try and salvage it. My main worry is that if we don't do it i will regret not trying the rest of my life. She didn't seem to think it would achieve much as she has absolutely no romantic feelings for me anymore, but hasn't ruled it out completely just yet. But it does seem like she has made up her mind.
My head is filled with so much regret and so much fear.
Yesterday i spent a lot of the day crying wondering how we are going to tell the kids, just the thought of having that conversation with them gives me the same feeling as when someone close to you has died, so sad about the fact that i wont get to put my son to bed and wake him for school everyday.
I'm lost as we have been each others best friend since the day we got together and going to counselling may destroy that as well.
It just sucks and i have no idea of what to do.
My world feels like is just imploding in on itself and any experience or advise would be much appreciated.
Take three deep breaths, I can appreciate this is very overwhelming and I totally get it is very hard knowing she has already made up her mind without giving you a chance to be a part of the decision. I know this is difficult to hear but my first impression is she doesnt want you to change her mind and that might be something you will have to accept and if she doesnt want to go to marriage counselling perhaps suggesting family counselling to minimise the impact of the separation for your kids will help you both communicate and understand each other better and maybe you won't have to lose a friend too.
I obviously am not a trained professional and I am often told I come across too blunt sometimes and I am sorry if i cause you any distress, if i did i hope you can ignore me. I have not been in your shoes and can only imagine how you are feeling, but I am sure there are many others here that can empathise and help you through this. You are not alone
Good morning "today"
I have been exactly in your shoes. I do believe I understand your emotions. In my case a mixture of pain, shock, confusion and grief. It's horrible. My wife announced she was leaving me in the New Year and moved 500 miles away taking my two adored children. Despite my numerous attempts at reconciliation, offers of counselling, her mind was settled. She had found someone else. Nevertheless, the earth kept spinning and your life too will continue.
I'm inclined to agree with DistraitLilly, when she writes "she doesn't want you to change her mind and that is something you will have to accept". Statistics tell us the majority of separations and divorces are instigated by women. It is not a step anyone takes lightly but your wife is being very clear on her intentions. I know this feels like you have been punched in the gut and are struggling to breathe but the sooner you come to terms with your situation, the better you will cope and find the strength to make sure the children are protected from adult problems as much as possible.
I think one of the key areas why so many men (including me) have trouble processing separation and loss is because we think it is the end of our family. No more children, story reading, birthdays and love. It doesn't have to be that way. You will always be the father of your children and they will continue to love and respect you providing you display loving leadership and assist them finding emotional security.
By all means, undertake couple counselling and I hope it is successful. But remember, it takes two people to make a marriage work, if your wife has already emotionally bailed out, you have to face the fact that your marriage is over.
Like DistraitLilly, I apologise if my language is too blunt. But I wish I had someone to give me this advice 40 years ago when I went through what you are suffering.
Thank you for your replies. Its very helpful to know that i am not alone.
I know deep down that everything will be ok, its just going to be hard.
You are not alone. I have had the same thing happen to me. My partner of 30 years announced that he didn’t feel anything for me. I did not see that coming. He had disconnected for quite some time and I just thought he was going through stuff. Lots of things were crap for him, like work, he was complaining about everything. Anyway, in his head, I was the thing he decided he would change. I was initially furious that now he tells me without even discussing what was happening. I felt ashamed and embarrassed that he felt this way about me.I also have been in a grieving process and trying to figure out what my life will look like. I was scared.
With Christmas approaching I was an emotional wreck and just wanted to disappear to a remote location. I was in total despair and on holidays with what I felt like was no escape. I was not suicidal, my thinking was that I could not do that to our children.
I found comfort in contacting lifeline via the Internet and would wait until a counsellor would respond ( online service 12 - midnight). This really helped me organise my thoughts and regulate. This site has also been helpful.
I sought psychological support through the employee assistance scheme through work. This took a little while to get an appointment but was such a release and gave me some good strategies when talking to my partner.
I know your wife does not want counselling but some form of relationship counseling in how to separate with children involved is beneficial. When children are involved you will always be part of each other’s life. They can also help the both of you on how to tell your children and to have the least impact on them. Many people nowadays have successful shared care situations with their children, which means communication with your wife.
Have you a friend or family member you can talk to?
The main message I got from support from this site is to self-care and it was a great place to vent my emotions and uncertainties.
Every situation is different. If you can handle it, I would suggest not leaving or making any changes until you are certain what it will look like. Financial decisions also come into it.
Stay safe. Thoughts with you.
I am in somewhat a similar situation as you ... Although mine is much more hopeless.
Sounds to me that you have some positives you can take from this
Its seems like you both still get along so you could possibly have an amicable divorce which would be very beneficial for your kids and both of you in the future.
My wife on the other hand is very hard to deal with.
She is never at fault , cannot be blamed or criticised or reasoned with. She can be extremely angry , aggressive and unpredictable person.
I'm too scared to have a conversation with her as she can have a physical tantrum very easily.
She has already refused counselling many years ago.
A separation or divorce for me could actually be worse than staying married and dealing with her.
It sounds like your wife has made her mind up so maybe you start to thinking about the next step of separating ?
Best of luck stay strong . Life will still go on !!
Thanks everyone for your help. Its really helped me process everything a lot more rationally than i thought i could.
We have started to communicate a lot today to start the process.
I know that everything will be ok. Just got to go with it and not worry about things i cannot control too much.