This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Right decision to separate?(26 Posts)
I am looking for some advise please.
I have been with my wife for 9 years and have a 5 year old daughter.
Me and the wife are basically very different people and I don't think we are compatible. We love each other but everything is just constant bickering, nearly every decision and we don't see eye to eye on most things in life to be honest. I like to do fun things - she doesn't. She would be happy basically doing nothing in life other than clean the house and watch coronation street.
We have been in this rut for at least 3 years now. In the week we are parents (good parents)- we are not really a couple. At the weekends I feel like I am a single dad anyway as mostly its me and my daughter doing things together.
It's come to make a decision and I think it is the right one to end it - not for my sake, but my daughters. I know its going to be so traumatic on her but I am more afraid of carrying on like this and then separating when she is older as that could be catastrophic on her.
I struggle to see how this marriage can mend because we are different - I don't want to change and be 'boring'. I don't expect the wife to suddenly change and do things she really doesn't want to do.
My main focus on this decision is my daughter:
- I've thought about staying with wife until Daughter is old and leaves schoold but it can't be healthy listening to parents bickering daily (not arguing but constant disagreeing)
- I'm scared of trying again and again and it finally coming to an end when she is older as this will affect her more. This is not an overnight thing - its been a few years now.
From my points:
- If we separate I will be able to do the things I want to do such as camping with my daughter because she will be with me at the weekends.
- There is a chance there is someone more compatible out there (although currently last thing on my mind)
- I can come home without being constantly affected by her depression and moods.
- I will be back in control of my life - if I want to do something I will.
- Daughter being affected
- Missing my daughter when I come home from work - we are super close
- I will miss the wife because I still love her and want the best for her
- I will worry about the wife mentally
I'm just looking for some advise really and how to progress the decision. I don't want to make a decision I may regret.
I understand all your concerns but your positive list shouldn't ASSUME you;ll get weekends.
What if your wife wants some time with your DD when she's not in school?
Just something to consider as she might raise this...your wife might not want the constant school-week, the homework and all that but might want some kick-back time with DD...even if it is only watching telly.
Your wife's mental health is of course going to worry you but you have every right to seek a different life for yourself.
If you miss your DD in the week after work, you could possibly have her on for eg. Saturday night to sunday night and Wednesday night..or similar.
If you're thinking about this seriously, also consider how your housing will be affected. Do you own or rent for example? Will your wife be able to manage a mortgage alone? Rent?
We have already been talking about arrangements should all of this happen. We rent currently and I am pretty much the earner so unfortunately she will be living back home with the parents for some time.
She suggested each weekend daughter with me which I am happy about but at the same time I did say it needs to be flexible arrangements because there will be times that she wishes to do something at the weekend, or I may book a few days off work in the school holidays and want her.
We are amicable - We love each other still. We're just not compatible it seems.
I'm a bit confused OP, has an agreement to separate on a mutual basis alreadybeen made between you and your wife or are you still just deciding if it is something you want to do?
Have you talked to your wife previously about the issues you have with each other? Attended counselling individually/together???
We sat down and properly talked about it 1st January but said we should seriously think over the month to make sure we make the right decision. That's what we are doing.
From last nights talks I am more thinking it is the right thing to do. I think wife is a little less like that.
Have you considered your DD staying with you full time and your (ex)wife having her EOW. It sounds like she might be better off with you.
I work full time and away some days worldwide.
Does your wife work?
It sounds a little like you are seeing snapshots of your knackered wife, who may have already spent 2-3 hours with your daughter before you get home each evening, maybe an hour or so in the morning, and then all the time when you are ‘away worldwide.’ Yet you seem to think you are parent of the year??
I'm a fantastic father and that is something I am really proud of.
Work is work and I have to bring the bacon home. I'd rather not work away but that is the job I'm in. If I am in the office I finish early for time with my daughter.
You’re not answering the question though....
I am honestly not questioning your dedication to your daughter. Just whether you can recognise your wife’s contribution.
Totally, she's a fantastic mother.
That's not even something I need to think about.
I'm an trying to think about if it is the right decision to split or not if you read my Op properly.
How do you know when it is the right decision?
What are the definitive questions you should ask yourself?
I'd be asking myself had I done all I could to lift us out of the rut. Have you tried counselling?
We talked about counselling but reading upon that it is when people cannot talk without arguing. That's not us, we can talk
Fair enough, but it might get to the root of why your wife doesn't want to go out and have fun any more, assuming she's not always been like this? If it started when your daughter was two, perhaps exhaustion of having a toddler has become some kind of depression? Perhaps I'm being naive and romantic, but it sounds like you still love each other and there's no acrimony in play, so maybe all's not entirely lost?
Well its been going on three years now so your not acting on a whim. The worst option is waiting until your DD has left home before you leave.
I think you should try counselling if only so you can say you tried everything. If you split now your DD will be fine, you can hopefully preserve a friendly relationship and be able to co-parent.
The last thing your DD needs is to spend the next decade in a house with bickering parents and never see any role models expressing affection and love.
You all deserve to at least have the chance to find a partner that wants the same things as you. Your almost a single Dad now so I think the time has come for you to explore a 'break' in the relationship to see if its time to end or endure it.
It's definitely not acting on a whim. It's not like we have had an argument and we are going on one - we don't even have what i would call big arguments. It is just constant bickering.
We talked about counselling but upon reading that is more for when couples cannot talk without arguing. We are calmly talking but cannot see possible for a solution.
I'm 95% sure of the decision but that 5% still saying to make sure.
I know I will be fine. I know Daughter will be ok eventually. I am genuinely more concerned about Wife as she will be the one worse off to be honest. I wish that was different.
It sounds like you have already made up your mind as you are adamant that counselling will not help your marriage in any capacity and so I am not quite sure why you are posting.....
As a woman who had been married for 17 years and with STBX for 20 years, 2 kids, little communication skills, a few rough patches, I would kill for my STBX to agree to counselling to try and talk through our relationship and find ways to make it work - (really rough approx last 2 years, agreed MC March 17, never arranged as both busy, told me he wanted to leave July 17, left home Sept 17 and has OW apparently only from Dec 17).....you say you will be fine, but will your wife and DD?? I understand why people leave marriages where there is abuse but I do not understand people who want to leave a marriage without having said that they have tried in every single capacity that they can....IMO wedding vows mean sweet FA to people now and they give up far too easily.....
I would still try counselling. Its not just for people who are unable to talk, they also help with learning how to communicate without 'bickering'.
I am genuinely more concerned about Wife
If you took a break/split and she went to live with her parents then maybe they would be better able to support her. Without all the arguing she might find herself in a better place and more able to cope with life. And its even possible if you were both out of the conflict zone you might even be able to support her better as a friend.
It just sounds like its going to get worse from here if you stay in the same situation.
Have you met somebody else OP?
No. Not interested either took be honest.
It's all about life style, what's right and what's wrong.
Have you read any John Gottman? If you haven't, you should.
Was it different when you first got married?
If you're so incompatible, how come you guys got together? And how come you love her? Somethings not adding up here?
I'll have a read of JG.
I do love her, I always will. There is nothing malicious happened - we just seem very apart now and living as friends/parents. This is not how I see a couple should be.
We have always been different but now perhaps its finally realising that just isn't right.
There are also things I want to do in live that aren't going to be possible I feel while in this relationship.
Please login first.