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Coping with separation

  • WN4
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20 Jun 12 #337820 by WN4
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Hello all,

Apologies in advance for the long post.. I am having such difficulty coming to terms with it all.

My wife & I separated eight months ago (November 2011) - she announced she was leaving after talking / arguing about it for many years. I was shocked by her announcement but didn''t attempt to dissuade her. We were amicable & I gave her practical help & advice. It was extremely distressing for her when she left ( went to live in rented house as I am the primary carer of our teenage daughter)& she lost weight rapidly & was visibly unwell. Within the next few weeks she seemed to warm towards me & we arranged to have Christmas dinner together as a family. In February, we were in my house alone & she asked for a hug, which then led to sex. I felt guilty afterwards but she said it was fine as we were consenting adults.
The next day she rang me in an emotional state saying she couldn’t go to work & could I go round to her house. I spent the day talking with her & she mentioned going for marriage counselling, dating &, ultimately, reconciliation. I said it was emotionally driven & it would be premature but perhaps after she had had individual counselling.

We had sex on two more occasions & on the last occasion she told me she had had sex with another man in the early days of our separation whom she had met through work prior to our separation & who had become a friend and emotional support in her unhappy marriage. (This was the reason for her emotionally spiralling after we’d had sex on the first occasion) She thought I had done the same & was upset when I hadn’t. She said she had made a huge mistake, was so sorry & I deserved to know if we were to ever reconcile . The sex was unprotected & I asked her about STI’s and pregnancy. She said she never thought of either, doesn’t like condoms anyway & that she was under the care of her GP anyway. I couldn’t / can’t come to terms how she could be so reckless & irresponsible & expose me to risk.

I asked her to go for an STI test, which she refused stating it was unnecessary & I was overreacting, as he was the only other man she had been with apart from me & he wasn’t the type to have had many women. I asked her for all of the intimate details of the encounter over many discussions, which she fully disclosed.

Our sex life immediately became more passionate than it ever had been with her using techniques she had learned with the other man. Her sex with him was extremely passionate & happened twice in total (night & morning). I had such mixed feelings / emotions: intensely lonely, abandoned anxious and insecure. I felt like I was competing with him / repulsed by her being with someone else / wanting to satisfy her desire so she wouldn’t go back to him / thoroughly enjoyed the intensity of the intimacy.

My questions continued & she said it was reviving old feelings for him, which she had dealt with, & we would argue frequently.

I continued to ask her to go for an STI test, which she refused so I arranged to go for one myself. The tests were all negative & I continued to encourage her to go as infected women are usually symptom free but she still refused.

We continued to have sex, went out on a few dates & started marriage counselling. I made many self-improvements- personality traits, new wardrobe, giving her attention etc – and I felt increasingly closer to her but she wasn’t moving forward at all. She felt we could make it work at times but was scared of it reverting to how things used to be.

We decided to stop having sex on a couple of occasions as it was clouding the issues but then recommenced.

Over the two years prior to separating we were both in separate counselling with the same male counsellor. My wife ended her counselling shortly before we separated & immediately struck up a friendship with him & they were texting/ringing each other every day. I always considered this inappropriate especially when I found out about the other man she had been involved with. She said this was different as she wasn’t attracted to him.

We discussed stopping sex again a couple of weeks ago, to see how she really felt, as she hadn’t had chance to miss me as she was having the best of both worlds: independence & sex without commitment. We’ve been going to marriage guidance still but my wife isn’t even contemplating reconciliation.

She never formally ceased contact with the man she had sex with but assured me it was over. It’s now transpired that she has been in touch with the other man again recently in order to make sense of what happened between them & to dispel her feelings of being used as suggested by others and me. Nothing physical happened between them – they met for coffee - and they parted on good terms. I have had such a problem with them meeting and feel even more lonely, anxious & insecure.

My wife has told me I am too needy and smothering for her, which is pushing her away. She has also said that she doesn’t expect me to wait while she makes up her mind and suggested I date other women, even though she would probably be devastated if I met someone else but that would be her problem.

She is a kind, generous person who would do anything to help me but by turns is capable of such anger and abusive speech.

Now for my present state:

I really feel I cannot cope with my life any longer. I can’t sleep, focus on anything & don’t want to go anywhere or do anything. I only want to talk people who are aware of the separation and who will offer empathy. I can’t face the future without my wife and find the thought of her being with any other man unbearable

I have very few close friends due to being the primary carer of my children and working alone on a self-employed basis for many years, although I’ve always been a loner anyway. I live in a small town and have few social outlets.

I don’t want any other woman than the mother of my children who I’ve known since childhood ( now in my forties) . I made many mistakes during my marriage and have rectified many of them & want to start afresh. I’ve read online guides on “ getting your wife back” but nothing seems to have worked. I can’t make her love me again and know that my neediness is driving her further away.

I wouldn’t have the confidence to date other women and, although I’m handsome and in good shape, cannot see what they would find attractive about my personality.

I’ve started hypnoanalysis and read self-improvement tips online but am struggling with day-to-day life, crying frequently and unable to get things done. I want to go back to college but don’t have the motivation or focus to see it through.

I don’t like medication but am reluctantly considering it now – my wife is going to my GP with me today.

Can anyone offer any advice on any of the above? Course of action, therapy, books etc? Sorry again for the rambling post.

  • Marshy_
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20 Jun 12 #337836 by Marshy_
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Hi WN4. I can see why you are in this mess. Your breakup was a long drawn out affair and you allowed yrself perhaps unwisely to get involved in some triangle with yr wife and another man.

What you have been thru is little short of shocking. No one should have to have done what you did. And for what? Love of yr wife? While all the time. She had the penny and the bun.

I think what may help you is if you make some commitments to yrself to change yr behaviour except this time, not at the request of yr wife as I suspect you are an honest and decent man.

For what ever reason, you have got stuck in this situation that you are in and the only way that I can see a way out of it is to separate this time but permanently. She now knows, that she can have unprotected sex with anyone and you will play this game with her. Her all the while, has these 2 men chasing her and having sex with her. I think you owe it to yourself to say goodbuy to her. For good this time. But that means that she cant just swan back into yr life and let her use you in her fantasies. Because that is what she is doing. She is using you. And that will do you no good whatsoever. U deserve better than this.

She is dragging you down mate. You are trying to compete with this invisible man and be something that she wants you to be and in the meantime, what are you? You deserve to be a person in your own right.

Lastly, you say I wont a lot. Thats ok for now as you are not in a good place. But I want you to remember this... If you get out of this mess (and you will) then everything is up for grabs in your future. A future where you are number one in someones life. Not playing a 2 bit role in some weird 3sum where the only winner is the one in the middle. That is yr ex. Hope some of this helped. And welcome to WV. C.

  • Canuck425
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21 Jun 12 #337977 by Canuck425
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She is a kind, generous person who would do anything to help me but by turns is capable of such anger and abusive speech.

Really? You think she is kind? Wow. Reading your post I get that she is confused, manipulative and selfish but I don''t see kind at all. At least not toward you.

I think you need to take a step back and really consider how you''re going to take care of yourself. What is best for you in the short and medium term? Once you figure that out then can you commit to it?

I understand where you''re coming from. My journey has been somewhat similar without all the confusing sex ;). You still love her and want to be married to her. I get that. However, she is not really in it with you. So what are you going to do?

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