Okay. I may have stolen the title from a book I found to be rather inspirational: Eat, Pray, Love. But for me it worked. My husband dropped the bomb on me on 29 May 2015 with the 'I love you but I'm not in love with you' I remained strong and didn't shed a tear after 10 years together and 3 years of marriage I could only sit numbly and suggest that he was just going through a phase and we should get marriage counselling. It wasn't until the moment the door shut behind him with his packed bags that the facade crumbled. It was over, I could tell and even though he said that he would have '2 weeks to think things through' I knew he was just paying lip service to the marriage. So he left and I immediately went out with a friend and got so drunk on wine / anger / pain that I was home by 7pm vomitting my guts up. I then proceeded to pass out on the bathroom floor only to wake up the following morning crying my heart out and vomitting some more. The only thing that went around and around in my head was 'get off the floor, get off the floor' I did. I crawled onto the sofa and proceeded in looking at the state of my life and thinking 'what now'.
I am 33, with no children (I desperately want a family), soon to be divorcee, my social life revolved around my ex: which an insight into one of our martial issues, lonely I am extremely lonely, suffer on and off with depression, totally in love with my now ex, no real hobbies to talk of. So through the pain and the tears I sat there pen in hand and wrote a list of all the things that felt 'wrong' in my life (things my ex had no qualms telling me over and over again so I knew what they were) and how I planned to fix them. Over the coming months I found myself reconnecting with friends & family, getting a promotion at work, going to therapy , signing up to an intensive course which starts next week, going out on my own with my photography, doing my art again and creating a circle of people whom I can tell anything and trust implicitly. I still had work, I want to make more friends as my circle is sparse and full of married people with children but I was getting there.. slowly.
On 28 August 2015 my ex met up with me and told me he wanted to file for divorce. He has been thinking about things but we were just too different: he liked running and climbing, I liked cycling and going for dinner with friends. Looking back now these are all just excuses, we were together so long and did have a lot in common: morals, beliefs, friends, backgrounds, sense of humor, goals in life and much much more. I asked if it was the children thing he said 'I want children just not with you'. But he was (and still is) in some kind of a fog - me and other people can see it just to look at him. Unfortunately that day I had remained calm and composed until later in the evening where I ended up vomitting again: I'm not much of a drinker so can't take it v.well as you may have guessed already. My ex had to look after me that night, which was humiliating at best.
Though with the help of my therapist, family and friends I managed to pick myself back up fairly quickly. Though there were (and are days) where it is so difficult. I find myself obsessed with social media, particularly the women whom he contacts, my stomach twists into knots. So I came off of social media for a couple of months and things seemed to be a little better. I was still very much in love with my ex but I was learning to live with the fact that he doesn't love nor want to be with me. He put the first set of divorce papers in on 7 October 2015.
Then in November something in me snapped. I was watching an episode of The Mindy Project and empathized with a poor relationship she found herself in. Whilst for the first few years my husband was everything I could possibly wished for in the last 2 years he became extremely critical of everything I did. If I wanted to start a course or do something new he would be supportive whilst telling me every last reason why I should do it and what could / would go wrong, he would put me down in front of friends and show more interest in his phone / running than he did our marriage. I shouldn't have given him that power but the changes were so incremental that by the end of our relationship my self-esteem was SO LOW I found myself staying with him out of fear that I would never be good enough to meet anyone else. I sent him a hate filled email spewing my guts and anger of his treatment of me, it wasn't fair, my only justification is the pain I was in needed an outlet. He responded with a call crying his eyes out telling me he was sorry: I agreed to meet.
At this point I will give you a little background on my ex: his mother left him and his little brother when he was 6yo, his father was a CEO and left him with his new 23yo wife who was the woman that broke up his parents marriage (she is insane) and he has never really felt loved by anyone until he met me. Two years ago his 17yo half brother, whom he lived in the same house with, got diagnosed with terminal cancer its everywhere, he has just had his lifetimes supply of treatment he won't last the next few months. So I understand people will be asking WHY does she / has she excused so much but these are the thoughts I have running around at the back of my head and colour my actions.
When we met he was in a complete state: shaking, weight gain, massively in debt in just a few months, wants to quit his job, wants to move to 'brixton where the cool people are', smoking even though he quit years ago, sobbing all the time. I know this blog will paint the picture of a bad man - but he really isn't, he is really really lost and hurting and confused and I can gaurentee most people that meet him would like him. I found myself apologizing (I did feel bad) and telling him I forgive him and that it is all okay. I even suggested therapists and techniques to deal with his pain. That opened the door for flirty messages from him, I emailed him telling him to either tell me what it is he wants from me or to leave me the hell alone. Then the week before Christmas he showed up at my door at 12am. He had been agonising over my email, told me he sat for 3 hours on Waterloo bridge contemplating his life, how he can never be happy and he just wanted to end it all. I took him, he is my husband and I love him. We spend the weekend together, him on the sofa, I look after him, I nurse him back to some form of mental health, he tells me I saved his life. I still love him and want him back, though I remain calm and don't say anything to him.
After this time I tell his friends and family about my stbx suicidal thoughts and tell them he needs serious help but it is too hard for me to look after him. They take on the role of carer. During this time I thought maybe just maybe he was starting to come to the realisation that he had thrown away a perfectly good marriage. That possibly he understood that the reason he was so unhappy wasn't our marriage, that we do love eachother and would come out the other side of this tough time stronger than ever. Two days before Christmas he shows up at my door with a very thoughtful and expensive gift he tells me its just to say thank you, that he knows i'm better off without him but I saved his life and he wants to thank me for that and he will leave me alone now: my hope flares.
After Christmas I meet with my stbx family member: I find out that my ex had slept with his best friends new girlfriend. Whilst it wasn't anything serious yet he had still gone behind his best friends back dated and slept with this woman. Now it only lasted a week or so, I wasn't with my ex at the time as this happened in October but I can only say that this hit me HARD. I mean really really HARD. I started trawling through the timelines and slotting this woman and his feelings into place. She rejected him to stay with his best friend so has the latest suicidal bout been about guilt to his friend and feelings for this girl? Was she instrumental in the reason he filed for divorce in October? Is she better in bed than me? Is she more interesting than me? What about her makes her so appealing?
My stbx didn't have to tell me these things, he only did so as he thought someone else had got in contact. Its at this point that the calm and 'I've moved on' mask that I had been holding up to my ex melts. Raw pain replaces it: I ask him all the questions, like an sadist ask for all the details: he complies. Tells me this woman had nothing to do with 'us' he was lonely and confused and she was cute they had a 'connection' and they ended up in bed together, it wasn't anything serious just a casual thing. I look on social media and see that he has been commenting on her items at least a month after their supposed break but at that point she (he claims that it was him) cuts of their social media connection by blocking one another. I know I KNOW that he hasn't cheated on me and I can only imagine the pain if he had because even typing this I feel sick at the thought of this woman. I don't know what it is about her, I really don't want to sound vain but I am far prettier, better job, more accomplished, am more cultured, better morals (certainly wouldn't sleep with 2 best friends at once) and people used to tell my stbx that he was punching way out of his zone with me: this girl is certainly more in his 'league' I guess...
Sorry I digress from the story. So 2 days ago it came to a head, I call my ex and tell him exactly how I feel. I am in tears. I feel like he has been stringing me along for the last 2 weeks with comments like 'I'm not ready to file for the Decree Nisi as its too final' 'I have been counselling people not to walk away from relationships as they will regret it like I do' 'I have been telling people that I made a mistake'. Why did he do this? Probably to get an ego boost as I was so clearly moving on with my life and his was falling to pieces and he had been rejected by this girl. He said that wasn't the case, that it was my email about how he had treated me that sent him to a suicidal place as he knew I was right and he hated himself for it. This woman was inconsequential.
So I asked him the crunch question: What do you want from me? He said he was messed up at the moment, that he 'thought' he had wanted me back but now he realised he wasn't really missing the marriage just my company, he was messed up. So I said 'You don't love me, you don't want to be with me, you have filed for the final divorce papers' he just quietly muttered 'yes'. It wasn't enough for me, I needed to hear the words, I wanted him to know some of my pain so I said say it, say what i have just said you need to own this he repeated 'I don't love you, I don't want to be with you, I have filed the final divorce papers' he was in tears throughout this sobbing uncontrollably - I felt terrible yet relief all at the same time. I could hear the pain in his voice. I just needed to hear it. I needed him to say it. I need to let go. I still love and want to be with him.
So that brings me up to today: My stbx is in therapy, his family are trying to get him sectioned, he is signed off from work due to his depression / anxiety and is on a strong dosage of antidepressants. Knowing how badly he has effected me after our conversation he knows better than to contact me any more. Though deep down I want him to, even deeper down I know its best if he doesn't. I find myself unable to afford therapy, crying at work and yet again leaning on my poor friends and family for support. I feel in more pain now than I did after the initial breakup. I feel my romantic life is a lost cause as I can't even begin to look at anyone whom I like more than my ex, I signed up to online dating on 1 January and feel sick every time I get a notification from another man wanting to talk and I cry at the thought that he is probably already / or soon will be sleeping around again.
I find myself googling 'midlife crisis' 'midlife crisis reconciliation' 'do men stop a divorce' 'husband realises mistake before its too late'. I guess this time of year coupled with everything that has happened in the past few weeks has left me sort of like a broken toy. My ex and I are both in the same broken boat I guess. I shall have to snap out of it like I did before, I just don't understand why its so much harder this time.
Its my birthday and anniversary at the end of this month. Before then I start my very intensive course which I am hoping will expand my social circle and keep me occupied. I am also very busy at work. I have also requested therapy through my companies EAP so hopefully that will come through. Though I have no evening plans to speak of so I know the loneliness will set in.
I am sorry this post is SO LONG, I am just trying to get everything up to date. I am hoping that my posts will become shorter and certainly more cheerier.... I'm just not in the most happiest of places right now.
I know their are people who have been together longer, been treated worse or have been cheated on and my heart goes out to them. I can only imagine the pain. All I can say is this is a cathartic thing for me and in writing my story I really hope it helps to know that I may possibly be helping others in similar positions. I am hoping that my story will become about strength after a breakup, moving onwards and upwards, having a better life and stronger relationships...
I will try to leave you on a positive note: I spent New Years out with some friends of mine and as 12 o'clock hit I hugged my friend and he said 'finally that crappy crappy year is behind you' to which I replied 'I don't regret the year, it taught me to love and cherish my friendships like never before and for that I'm grateful'.
It's so true damaged children are damaged adults. I now realise that my husband has very strong sociopathic personality traits I can't believe the person that he is and how I never really acknowledged who he is. Strange what love can do to us; they say love is blind, never a truer adage.
What annoys me the most now is that I wasted my youth and my beauty on this man and now I feel that I am past my sell by date. I went to the hair dresser today and just saw an old lady staring back at me who I do not recognise and am in a really depressive state today. My future looks quite bleak. All because I married a damaged human being.
Hi Fieldsofgreen. Thank you for your comments, yourself and the rest of the wiki community are amazing. I am so grateful to have found this site so thank you.
My dad said something similar about people with difficult childhoods making difficult partners. In the future I will certainly be more wary and look out for the 'red flags' where my next partner is concerned.
There is still a part of me that hopes he will change his mind, though another more sensible part which recognises he probably won't. I am trying to live by the old saying 'hope for the best and prepare for the worst'... I'm concentrating on building a life without him, but still a part of me hopes. I guess that is the last thing to go? The hope? Still learning to let go, all the while trying to build myself up... But today was the first morning I woke up and wasn't thinking of him. Even this small change seems to be a significant one ;D
Yourself and all other wikis deserve to find true happiness, whether thats with another partner or alone. I just want to say thank you again, your kindness is truly humbling.
Thank you for telling your story. I hope you feel better for writing it down and that you make progress and are able eventually to come to terms with not being with him. I was with a difficult critical man for a long time throughout our entire marriage of over 30 years.
I realise now that nothing but very intense long term therapy was going to make him better and it was something that he simply wasn't willing to do. It's hard to generalise and there are probably exceptions, but men who have difficult childhoods make poor husbands. Although on the surface my husband had a good upbringing, his mother was obsessed with cleaning and would humiliate him time and time again, e.g. by bringing out her handkerchief to clean his knees after he scored a goal! So he has a deep seated hatred of women that was never going to go away.
So you should look to a future without him as he is probably never going to make you happy. I hope you find someone who treats you well very soon. You deserve it.