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Wife doesn't love me anymore

(268 Posts)
Lostdad31 Fri 19-Oct-12 06:36:57

My wife and I have been married for 2 years, and together for 5. We have 2 amazing little ones, a little girl who's almost 2 and a half, and our little man who's coming up to 8 months. We have the perfect family...or so I thought.

She recently told me she's become confused, and has lost something. She said she doesn't love me anymore. She's adamant it's nothing I've done, she told me I'm the perfect husband and the perfect father but her feelings have just changed. I was completely devastated! If it wasn't for the kids she would already have left, but she said she'll give it some time for their sakes. I was obviously very confused and subsequently looked at her phone - I know I shouldn't of but I wasn't exactly thinking clearly. There were texts on their between my wife and someone from her work, very flirty messages about her picturing him in the shower, and wanting to meet up etc. Needless to say I was broken. Our relationship has always been perfect, and I never thought she could betray and hurt me this way. She says nothing has happened, and it's just flirting, which she realises she shouldn't have done and is really sorry for. Apparently it's a sympton not the cause.

But now I'm just lost. I'm constantly on the verge of tears, and I look at the kids and imagine our perfect family being broken up and it kills me.

I've told her I will do anything I can to make it work, I still love her so very much I ache. Everytime I think of her flirting with this other man it feels like a stab through my heart, but I've convinced myself that if I can reawaken her feelings and feel loved again then I can trust her again. Am I deluding myself? Part of me feels like she's already made her decision and this period of giving it some time is to allay her guilt.

Help me!

ike1 Fri 19-Oct-12 10:04:43

You can still have a brill family life and not live with the mother of your kids y'know. Look at my ex-just returned from a holiday in New York with partner sees loads of the kids - nice little home...a perfect balance in some ways (wry grimace lol!)

larrygrylls Fri 19-Oct-12 10:09:18

You are being taken for a big ride and your wife is holding all the cards. Tell her to either focus on your marriage or you will start making arrangements for the divorce and go for equal custody of the children (if that is possible). In the interim, tell her that you will be sleeping in separate rooms and you will be putting the house on the market/looking to rent somewhere else. And follow through by discussing all your options with a solicitor.

She is having her cake and eating it, big time.

HoleyGhost Fri 19-Oct-12 11:41:06

There is absolutely no excuse for your wife's behaviour. I second the advice to get away for some time to yourself, to clear your head and help you come to terms with things. You should also get legal advice, find out where you stand.

I can't help wondering about how she is coping with a baby and toddler. If your wife is numb because she is depressed, her flirting with a colleague might be escapism.

Lovingfreedom Fri 19-Oct-12 12:20:04

Good possibility your DW is having an affair I'm afraid. I'd look out for other signs. No time to be asking her what she needs etc etc. She's got what she needs...a lovely guy at home and a bit on the side t work. ap thisr. You need to let her see its not on and make it clear you won't just put up with anything to keep her and keep her happy. If she's saying she doesn't love you, wants to leave etc...let her go. She'll either come crawling back...suspect she will or you'll be well rid.

geegee888 Fri 19-Oct-12 12:36:51

How lovely are you OP?! Your post describes a horrid thing, yet your only concern is for your DW. Her behaviour has been awful, and unfair, but moving on, you have a situation to deal with. Different things work in different situations, so theres no one rule fits all to apply. She might just be feeling in need of more male attention as she feels less attractive after having kids. Alternatively, she could have realised she has married the wrong man. If you love her, you should probably fight for her and let her know how much you love her and how upset you are, but also let her know that you won't put up with this situation indeterminably. Thats the best advice I can think of and I wish you the best of luck.

Lostdad31 Fri 19-Oct-12 12:40:43

Thanks for all your opinions.

I think I'm still in shock because thoughts are processing a bit slower than normal.

I know I can't let it stagnate like this for long. The uncertainty and fear for the future is crippling. I think some time away might be a good idea, but it's just arranging it so the little ones don't suffer.

I've wondered about depression or pnd, wife hadn't been herself for a little bit, and she decided to go back to work earlier than we had planned.

It just kills me that, whatever happens, I've lost my best friend for good sad

Lostdad31 Fri 19-Oct-12 12:40:51

Thanks for all your opinions.

I think I'm still in shock because thoughts are processing a bit slower than normal.

I know I can't let it stagnate like this for long. The uncertainty and fear for the future is crippling. I think some time away might be a good idea, but it's just arranging it so the little ones don't suffer.

I've wondered about depression or pnd, wife hadn't been herself for a little bit, and she decided to go back to work earlier than we had planned.

It just kills me that, whatever happens, I've lost my best friend for good sad

NotQuintAtAllOhNo Fri 19-Oct-12 12:42:48

Your wife has been indulging in an emotional affair (at best, taken it physical at worst, but she is unlikely to admit how far it is gone). This means she has already checked out of your marriage, she is focusing her emotions on another man rather than you. This is both selfish and immature, considering you have two young children.

You should be furious with her. She is jeaopardizing her family, her childrens and your happyness, in order to behave like a cheap tart just to feel good about herself.

Do not let her think that she can just swan off with her "new man", or kick you out. If I were you, I would ask her to leave (and not take the kids) so she can give you space and find out what she wants. And also so you can work out whether you still WANT to be with her.

This is as much about what YOU want, as what she wants.

pinotnoirprincess Fri 19-Oct-12 13:21:05

LostDad31
Your wife is treating you, the Father of her children very badly and is copping out of her marriage vows. At this stage, you owe her no favours. I understand that you love her and your family and want things to work out, but right now, I think you need to think of some practicalities. I think you need to turn off the emotion for a few days and go and take some legal advice about your situation as to regards to your living arrangements and your children. I think it is very important that you do this. If you break up, then you are not in a vulnerable position and you know your rights. If you stay together, no harm done, she'll never know you sought legal advice. How do you know she is not using this thinking time to get her ducks in order? Please go do this. It may save you a lot of grief later. You have done nothing wrong, she is breaking up the family, why should you be the one to lose out.

I would also be saving any evidence and details of her texts if you can.

I cannot help you any more sorry as I cannot understand why your wife thinks the grass may be greener on the other side. You sound like a really nice, loving bloke who doesn't deserve this shit.

I agree with NotQuin about if she wants out, she can go, leave the house and leave with the clothes on her back. If she wants to break the family up, she can go. When you cheat, you wreck lives and jeopardise your kids future. LostDad31, YOU need to take control of things. She will get the shock of her life when she realises that she can no longer treat people like shit without consequences.

Lovingfreedom Fri 19-Oct-12 13:35:06

Yeah maybe self esteem, body image, depression etc came into it....but don't you think a more rational person would seek medical or professional help rather than seeking support via exchanging dirty pics with naked showering colleague?
Don't start taking the blame for or excusing HER bad behaviour.
Women come on here and do that all the time too!
And yes....WOULD say the same to them.

Polecat2011 Fri 19-Oct-12 13:57:41

Hi Lostdad, I do feel for you, having been in a similar position. Don't accept depression as an excuse for cheating, it would only continue. In fact, don't accept any excuse. If she wants to exit the family you cannot really prevent it. You can escalate it by appearing weak and a "push over". She will at least respect you if you are firm. Make it clear to her that you won't live in a loveless marriage. If she won't make very strenuous attempts to repair the marriage and show real and continuing shame and regret over her behaviour, then ask her to leave. You should remain in the home with the children and she should leave. She appears to have checked out of the marriage anyway. She is now using you. I think once one party has crossed the line, there is always the real risk that they will look elsewhere again and again. You could never truly trust her. She will quickly work out what she can get away with, and what level of bad behaviour you will tolerate. A weak father is not a good role model for your children. They could well grow up to disrespect you too, if that is how they see you treated by their mother. Sorry if this sounds tough. But you really do need to take control and tell her what you will tolerate.
Keep posting, Good Luck, you sound so nice, probably too nice for your own good.

DuelingFanjo Fri 19-Oct-12 14:02:33

I feel for you but I also think you can't make someone love you if they don't.
You're better off thinking about the practicalities of separating and arrangements for a custody situation that would best suit your children.

plantsitter Fri 19-Oct-12 14:04:30

Wow, do people with 3 year olds and 8 month olds AND a job really have the time/ inclination for an affair? Not in my experience.

I'm sorry you're going through this OP. I don't think you should sit back and take all this crap from your wife but at the same time if something is worth anything, it's worth working on. If she wants to 'give it time' you should tell her if she's not spending that time working on your marriage with you (counselling or whatever) then you don't think there's any point. I know it is painful but it will actually be much less painful for you (and, actually, your kids) in the long run.

Dryjuice25 Fri 19-Oct-12 14:14:24

In this situation the one who loves the least has got the most power and will manipulate the situation. Take back this power and don't let her disrespect you. Lovely as you sound, maybe these feelings might really about her own issues and nothing you have done/not done.

The fact she went back to work earlier suggests she's had to re-evaluate things and that might apply to wanting to overhaul all aspects of her life including your involvement in it. She might not be fulfilled somehow. Do you have financial issues? Do you think you adequately supported her especially financially during maternity leave? Is she more career driven than you? Do you still genuinely compliment her post pregnancy body etc...?

The chances are she might be unsure what she wants herself but I don't condone the emotional affair. She is a cow for it. There is no excuse and I'm devastated for you.

I agree it's time to be blunt and show her that under no circumstance will you allow her to disrespect you or manipulate you just because she can. I'm sorry but I think she has already checked out of the marriage. But I admire and commend your determination to want to make things work. DW might not know what she is looking for is right in front of her and the grass might not be as lush elsewhere. Time to give her a glimpse of what life would be like without you.

Do you think showing her this thread might help?

Helltotheno Fri 19-Oct-12 14:26:45

Don't lose heart OP, it's salvageable, it really is, BUT she has to experience the shock of losing (overnight if possible) someone she's taking for granted.
Alternatively, get a bit tough here... we all go through rough patches but in her case, she could've spoken to you about it, even if it involved admitting a change in her feelings towards you. Tell her it's clear to you that she's saying it's over and how does she want to handle access, finances etc. Trust me, it'll all be different once she sees you're not going to hang around to be walked all over til she loves you again, being a great father and husband etc. Sod that, why does she deserve it?

Lostdad31 Sat 20-Oct-12 21:16:04

I do appreciate everyones advice and it has made me realise I had to take action, for my own sanity if nothing else. So todays update:

So this morning I told DW to move out for a time (based on the fact my shift this week means I can look after the kids until thursday). I said she needed the time alone to have a proper think about what it is she really wants. I told her that I love her very much, and will do anything to make us work - but only if she is wiling to completely commit as well, and that includes counselling, which she initially completely ruled out, but is considering. I told her either she comes back and we together try everything we can to get us back, or we begin talking divorce, custody, money, house, etc. I explained to her how the current meandering along was torture for me, and she said she understood. She got upset, and was teary and admitted that it's come sooner that she thought it would. It came to this evening and she initially left to go to her sisters, while I got the little ones their tea and got them ready for bed. I then get a text saying she can't be apart from the kids and was coming back! She got back and we put the kids to bed and then we talked. She was devastated at the thought of being apart from the kids - not me. I reiterated that every uncomfortable kiss goodnight or goodbye, everytime I wanted to hug her or hold her it felt like punishment. Here is the woman I love with all my heart and she feels nothing for me, and basically recoils from me. This together with the suspicion and paranoia about the guy at work means carrying on as we are is not an option.

So I brought up counselling again. She is dead set against it. We've had conversations in the past about how we didn't rate counselling, and how it could never help (not us but friends) I basically said even allowing for that if it's got a million to one shot of working then I'd give it a go, and I didn't see what we had to loose. She answered "whats the point?" Which did make me feel sick and angry. I pointed out that us, and the kids were the point! She's considering counselling and we're gonna do some research (any clues where to start?) But I'm not deluding myself, I know you're all yelling at your computers to give up and leave, but I figure if we try counselling and it doesn't work then I've done everything I can and I walk.

To be honest I'm exhausted, physically and emotionally (a grumpy 8 month who's teething and has a cold doesn't help smile). I feel like I have a bit more power and say in things after today, and that, and my fabulous kids (i know everyone thinks it but my kids are perfect), are getting me through...for now.

I think you have been very brave. Well done.

I would pleasantly suggest to your wife that if she doesn't want to work at the relationship then that is her choice but she had better get used to not being with the dcs so much because you will want shared 50/50 arrangements.

LongTimeLurking Sat 20-Oct-12 21:29:09

Going by those texts she sounds like a total slapper who is at least having an emotional affair if not a full blown physical one. You deserve better, she is disrespecting you and showing how selfish she is by putting her own desires ahead of her kids and family.

Stop declaring your undying love and kick her out! Jeez the responses on this thread would not be so moderate if it was a woman posting about her husband, this situation is no different.

Start seeking legal advice re: 50/50 custody of kids, the house and any marital assets, before she is off out the door with her new man (playing daddy to your kids).

MmeDefarge Sat 20-Oct-12 21:41:34

You've done brilliantly. You've been really brave.

Hold your nerve now! Your wife has been selfish and you must make it clear, by what you say and do, that you will not put up with it.

Why not insist that she does spend the rest of the week away to give you some space. You need time to gather your strength before trying to repair the relationship. And it will bring it home to her that her actions could bring consequences she doesn't like.

This is about you as well now. You love her but you have to be firm that you will not hold on to a woman who cares nothing for you. She shouldn't think she has the final say on this.

Mumsyblouse Sat 20-Oct-12 22:01:37

I would seek legal advice, especially if you are both working. Otherwise there's a danger for you that she is still seen as the default parents and won't accept a 50/50 childcare arrangement, you need to see where you stand.

I know you want counselling to work, but nothing your wife is saying makes me feel like a) she is genuninely sorry and really fears losing you and b) that counselling with change anything.

She's not fussed about losing you, she's fussed about being apart from the children, and also that things are moving too fast FOR HER!

You might want to wonder if these texts have been going on for a while, I think starting something from scratch having just returned to work is unlikely, it's more likely that this history of flirting is longer than you think. I would not tolerate my husband writing texts about showers to another woman, you should not tolerate this at all.

Offred Sat 20-Oct-12 22:05:10

Oh again with the "if you were a woman" thing... <rolly eyes> my advice is no different!!

Lostdad31 - agree you've been really brave and I am shouting at my computer but just a little bit because I can see where you are coming from. I hope you will be happy whatever happens in the end.

Lovingfreedom Sat 20-Oct-12 22:11:20

You've give her time off and you've told her you will do everything to make it work?

She needs to know that UNLESS she pulls her finger out of her backside and starts behaving like she is in a relationship with you it is all off. You.re not only showing her your cards....you're also giving her all the best ones.
Expecting her to go to counselling is the least you can expect. However, as she's not too bothered about staying with you it seems..I'm afraid it is likely she
is trying to work out other options, almost certainly with Mr SHowerman. Now whether he wants to move in with her or refers to keep things more casual with her..Who knows.
She might be about to have her heart broken by him....then lucky you...you'll get her back for a while.

Lovingfreedom Sat 20-Oct-12 22:19:29

Predictive text....!!

SarahBumBarer Sat 20-Oct-12 22:30:09

She's not giving much is she? I'd suggest that she goes back to her back to her parents for a few days as originally agreed. She will have to learn that if she is not prepared to put in a lot of effort then she will have to get used to not seeing her kids all the time, she won't just be able to waltz in to your home whenever she is missing them - just a fact of divorced life. Also it will help you think clearly and hopefully get that anger a bit more up front. having her around all the time is likely to make you anxious and needy which will not be helpful.

Being honest, if it is true as you say and she actually recoils from contact with you, that is going to be very hard to come back from. If your reaction to this situation is in character with the usual dynamics of your relationship with your wife then it seems likely to me that she has probably learned that she can take you for granted and accordingly has allowed familiarity to breed contempt.

HappyHalloweenMotherFucker Sat 20-Oct-12 22:47:52

so she stayed away for a couple of hours, now she is back and nothing has essentially changed

< head >

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