So here's my story. Married 7 years ago to a girl I used to be at school with. We re-met about 15 years later at a school reunion when we were both living in London. Several meetups later and we realised that we both really liked each other. We started a relationship and were together 6 months when we decided we'd had enough of London and moved to the South West to be nearer to our parents. It sounds like the most romantic and dreamy story ever right? Well, I have always been very keen to have a family, having children is very important to me. When we first got together I was very clear on this point as I had been in a 6 year relationship previously (which ended several years before we met). She consistently told me that was her desire too. A year or so after moving we got married. Shortly afterwards all of the intimacy in our relationship evaporated. My wife wouldn't go anywhere near me. I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong and literally tried everything. She suggested I go out more which is exactly what I did. She wanted us to go on more holidays so she could go to all the dream places she wanted to visit before we had children. We did all of this too. For 7 years I went through with fulfilling her demands under the delusion that she would then want to start a family. During this period intimacy was effectively zero. I would count myself lucky if we maybe had sex once a year. At one point we went for 3 years without anything. Finally I decided enough was enough and we spent 2 years seeing a counsellor. I wanted us to go to couples counselling but my wife wanted us to see the counsellor separately. The counsellor tried really hard to try and understand what was wrong, but in the end it appeared that my wife was emotionally unavailable - partly because although she wouldn't admit it, she didn't want kids, but also because she finally admitted that all she wanted from the marriage was friendship and nothing more. I made the decision to leave and moved onto a little flat.
In the final 18 months of trying to save my marriage, I met someone else at a social group. Over the months we got really close and forged a fantastic friendship. I realised that this was becoming much more than a friendship and that we had both developed feelings for each other. Things felt perfect, she wanted children, we spoke at length and it became clear we shared the same values. I couldn't believe my luck and it was this which gave me the strength to finally end my marriage. That was 5 months ago and yesterday I just had to call it quits on the new relationship. It turns out that my new partner has major mental health issues. I won't go into details, but it went to the extent that I felt like a prisoner in my own flat and constantly anxious - it was horrible!
I feel in a really bad place at the moment. Although I am 5 months down the road from leaving my wife, I realise now that getting caught up in this new relationship just delayed the inevitable grieving process. I'm sick of the emotional drain and anxiety I have been feeling for the past few years. 7 years trying to sort everything with my wife and then 5 months of horrifying pressure trying to deal with someone with an extreme case of OCD and anxiety issues. My own anxiety has been through the roof! I know I have done the right thing, that ending both relationships was absolutely the right thing to do. I've also managed to get the divorce negotiation with my soon to be ex-wife to a point where I think we're a few weeks away from finalising the money transfer (she is buying the house from me). I think I might have just managed to secure a new house (just waiting to hear back) so all should be good. Despite this I'm feeling bloody awful. I hate my rental flat it is bleak and has too many bad memories of my ex-girlfriend (she lived there almost permanently for the last 2 months), expensive electric heating, single pane glass, mould growing everywhere it's dismal and definitely not what I need right now. I've decided to move back to my parents for the foreseeable. I need people around me and a safe familiar environment and a cosy home. I'm grieving the loss of my wife, her family (who by and large were wonderful), having to leave my cat behind (we didn't have children so our two cats felt like children and leaving him behind is a huge, huge loss).
I know I've made some really bad choices. I've fallen into the rebound relationship trap had my dreams smashed again within a very short space of time. It feels like a double whammy and I keep wondering if I'm ever going to feel happy again. The social group I joined over a year ago was where I'd started to build a new life, so breaking up with someone I met there who is still intending to go means that for now I've cut off that new life too. Despite all this pain, I know I'm very lucky. I managed to recognise that this new relationship was going bad and got out before it is too late. The house that I have (hopefully) bought is lovely and cosy with plenty of potential so I think I'll be really happy there. In a way, I am forcing myself to move on and that's probably exactly what I need to do. All my friends have said I've been incredibly brave and courageous - maybe I have, it just sure doesn't feel like it at the moment!
Ha anyone else been through anything like this? If you have, please, please tell me it gets better! I am still seeing my counsellor so I'm really hopeful that over time things will improve. I think I'm just desperately scared of being lonely - and having to manage everything myself. This is crazy when i have already proved to myself time and time again I can do all this stuff, I just can't quite seem to convince myself that this is so. What's really hard is that my ex-wife and I were best friends but I've lost all of that now having in her eyes left the marriage for another woman. I'm hoping I can rebuild a friendship again and over time that might be possible - I hope so.... I'm 41 now, 42 at the end of the year and I do wonder if time is now running out for me whether I'll ever have children. I'm a guy so I guess that makes it easier, but I have wasted so much of my life (13 years) on women who tell me they want children but it turns out actually don't that my confidence is completely shot. I know I need to heal, and that will take time, but after that I'm really unsure about what I should do...? I'm usually very outgoing and sociable, but my self-esteem has taken a real knock along with my confidence and I feel myself wondering if I can actually meet a normal woman! My friends tell me I'm attractive and won't have any problem at all - so why can't I just believe them!?
There it is, sorry for the length of the post but writing it has been quite cathartic!