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DH loves me but I don't love him and want to separate. Anyone been through this?

(35 Posts)
Iconfess Sun 14-Oct-12 21:30:28

Will try to summarise. I loved my first husband who died when I was 32 - we had not been able to have children. i already knew man from work who eventually asked me out 18 months after I was widowed. I enjoyed having someone to be with but didn't feel we had a future - then I got pregnant. In a nutshell I decided to make a go of things. Had the baby, fell pregnant again 2 years later, married current DH then had third DC.

Always said to DH that I felt unable to love him but he said he had enough love for us both. TBH I just thought I would get on with it - I had my kids that I had longed for, a secure home and a dependable DH - just no spark for me.

But all the time there was so much missing for me. We hit some low times and communication went downhill (DH never good at this anyway). I made efforts to address problems but DH found it easier to sweep them under the carpet. In the end I stopped trying and the brick walk of unresolved issues got higher and higher between us.

So nearly 12 years later I have been attracted to someone else. We recognised our strong mutual attraction but put it aside as we knew we should address what problems we had in our existing relationships rather than start an affair. It sounds like the best thing to do, but it hasn't worked out that way.

My DH knows I have been attracted to someone else and we have talked in full about all our issues as well as seeing a counsellor together. Trouble is, DH is desperate to stay together but I can't see a future for us. For three months we have gone round in circles and DH is under such stress as I hold all the cards. He tries all sorts to make things better but for me it's all too late. I know that if I'm going to be in a relationship I want to be in love. I don't want this one sided relationship anymore.

How do I sort this out? There's so much more to this story but don't want to go on even more. Has anyone been through anything similar?

tiredofwaitingforitalltochange Sun 14-Oct-12 21:56:42

What a sad story. Haven't got much to say to help, but hopefully others will have.

It does strike me as rather naive of your dh to say that 'he has enough love for both of you'. As if your emotions are irrelevant in the face of his.

Also, being widowed at such a young age must have been deeply traumatic for you. It's understandable that you wanted some intimacy and security when you had got over the first period of grieving. It sounds like you have done your best and been pretty honest with your husband throughout.

It might sound a bit harsh, but he kind of knew the score, and how you are feeling can't be that surprising to him. If the feelings were never there, they can't even be restored.

Don't beat yourself up about how you feel. You obviously realise that your relationship has no real future because there are huge unmet needs in you. You have tried to ignore the attraction with this other man in favour of trying to work on your existing relationship but there obviously isn't enough there to work on.

I think you need to end this marriage, for your sake and for your husband's. He chose you knowing that he would be 'second best' for you in some way, and that's a bit selfish really. He may be heartbroken but you both deserve a chance to find someone you really love and who loves you back in the same way.

You have had enough heartbreak in your own life losing your first husband when you were so young, and being denied the chance of children with him. Don't beat yourself up about how things have turned out.

Don't use another man as an exit, particularly when he's married. You will create more than one mess if you do.

I would urge you to be honest with your husband and yourself, move on and focus on being good parents in the future. As to the other man, he needs to do the same - if he wishes. Until he is free, he can't offer you the real happiness that you deserve, and doesn't deserve you.

BertieBotts Sun 14-Oct-12 21:58:42

The reality is he can't have a relationship on his own - if your heart isn't in it then it's over really, isn't it?

Obviously he'd be upset if you talked to him about ending it but how do you think he'd react aside from that? Has it been something you've discussed already?

Iconfess Sun 14-Oct-12 22:32:31

Thanks for these kind and understanding words. I do feel I've reached the end of the road and can't turn back. We have talked it all through but I do t think he is able to deal with or accept the reality. He swings from anger and resentment to despair and on to blind optimism all in a day. It must be a nightmare for him - I can see that - and he is nit a bad person, just not the right man for me. I gave talked about him trying to picture a happy future without me - having someone who returns his love - but I k is that it's a lot to expect him to find a positive side to the situation at this point.

Trouble is I want to keep things as amicable as possible to a our hurting g the kids any more than in necessary, so I'm taking things it in the hope that he will get through the shock and pain and be able to see a future without me. We have done couples counselling recently (for the third time in our marriage) and I've encouraged him to see a counsellor alone to help him face the issues of separating.

At one point he said if we split up he would move north (where he grew up) and leave the rat race to work in a stress free job. This shocked me as he is such a hands-on dad but was willing to walk (or run) away from it all. I would cope if he did that - house is paid for (due to bereavement) and I work - but I am scared of causing him to have a breakdown and lose touch with the kids.

Ultimately I know he us responsible for his own choices, but I feel I have to tread slowly and carefully for the sake of the children. It's bloody hard though so your support is really appreciated.

Ironically, he said it would have been easier if I'd had an affair - I guess there's someone to blame and resent then - and a reason you can give when people ask what happened. It's not necessarily the easiest option to be open and honest!

Iconfess Sun 14-Oct-12 22:37:58

Sorry about the typos - have to do this on my phone as DH has looked at MN posts before so do t want it on browser history.

spongebob5 Sun 14-Oct-12 22:40:14

Yes, ive been in a similar situation. Was with my husband for 11 years, he absolutely adored me , i loved him but as the years went on , I went to university , had a career and he remained in the same job , had no ambition and was quite content with the life we had.

That sounds quite selfish reading it back. Anyhoo 2 children later and realising that although I loved him as a person , I didnt love him as a wife should love her husband.

I eventually told him I wanted to end our marriage. It was like a bolt out of the blue to him, he couldnt accept it at all. Said he was going to change, do this, that, the other to make the marriage work. But at the end of the day, for any relatioship to work, both have to want it to work.its now nearly 2 years later and only now he seems to be (kind of) accepting it.
Good luck in whatever you decide xxx

Iconfess Sun 14-Oct-12 22:42:30

Wow Spongebob5 - have you stayed for those 2 years or did you leave?

HappyHalloweenMotherFucker Sun 14-Oct-12 22:47:11

This is very sad, but to be fair to your h, if you are sure there is no chance with him, you should make as quick and clean a break as possible

He is getting false hope with all this talking and mixed messages. I am sure you haven't meant to impart them, but the longer you spin it out, the more he thinks if he could just hang on it will be ok....

spongebob5 Sun 14-Oct-12 22:50:23

we did separate. we were living in the same house for quite a few months- he was sleeping in the spare room, it was nightmareish tbh! when you said in your post about the mood swings i totally understand, my ex was the same. hes living with his parents now & we are almost divorced, the decree absolute is at the end of the month. I also said to my ex about finding someone who truly loved him , as hes a good man & a wonderful dad. however his obsession with me since weve been separated has been hellish at times!

Iconfess Sun 14-Oct-12 23:00:50

Spongebob5 - so similar! How old were your DC and how did they sense the tension before he left and how have they coped since? My kids are 11, 9 and 6.

spongebob5 Sun 14-Oct-12 23:09:15

yes, isnt it?? before he moved out, it was horrendous. he shouted at me every night, several times i just ran out of the house in the middle of the night to get away. i was never worried about the kids it was just his anger towards me, couldnt (cant!) leave go. my girls are 13 & 8, sadly even tonight my eldest felt she had to act as referree between us sad

spongebob5 Sun 14-Oct-12 23:13:53

on the whole theyve coped ok, but obviously they miss us being a family

Iconfess Sun 14-Oct-12 23:16:26

Ooh Spongebob5 - I am full of admiration for you. I need to get the courage to follow your example. The consequences might be difficult but if I don't end this charade I think the kids will be caught in the middle of a disintegrating relationship that will turn angry and bitter anyway.

spongebob5 Sun 14-Oct-12 23:37:13

Well its been a long and hard road, but I am glad that i did it. It won't be easy, but do whats right for you x

Dryjuice25 Mon 15-Oct-12 01:27:12

Poor you, I could have written your post. We lived separated in the same house for ages, got together again at his coercion (and for the dcs) but now separated. But he is still hoping for a second reconciliation but I'm 100% certain he is the wrong'un for me. I'd do anything to knock sense into his head.

Good luck

Iconfess Mon 15-Oct-12 16:27:05

Dryjuice25, it is reassuring to know other people gave been through this. I did wonder if I woyld be told to count myself lucky that he loved me and to put the children first. I guess I thought this myself until recently, but now I am finding it impossible to live like this anymore.

familyscapegoat Mon 15-Oct-12 16:40:18

I think if you can say with absolute honesty that you want out of this marriage, even if the other man stays in his relationship and ceases contact with you, then end it as cleanly and as kindly as you can.

If however there is anything connected with rewriting history since meeting the other man or only being prepared to leave because of the promise of someone else to be with, reflect some more and dredge back further in the memory bank.

Most of all, if you're honest with yourself, you're more likely to be honest in your dealings with others.

Dryjuice25 Tue 16-Oct-12 01:28:16

I know what you mean....I thought I was lucky too but now it's kind of soul destroying to think that I have been inflicted with this man who is not fussed about my lack of love for him. I have one life and why would I want to spend it in an unsatisfactory relationship?

He will not leave me alone, we have no connection at any level but he is in denial and is quite happy to continue without any intimacy and I don't think it's unreasonable for me to want to be intimate with someone I am attracted to.(He is EA, lazy and very anti-social) I tell him to move on but he is a hermit and lacks confidence and would rather inflict his unwelcomed presence into my life. Only positive is that he loves his kids and is domestically trained(by me with much fight ) to do his share of child raising. He also gets unpleasant if I honestly explain how I feel about him, which makes me even more distant. I understand he was like this with an ex until she went back to her country. I dream about a life without him as I'm separated but he is treating the separation as a joke.

SadPunk Tue 16-Oct-12 02:35:43

I do know a bit how you feel Iconfess, i have told "d"p many times that I want to split, it just doesn't work though, his determination to pretend that everything is a-ok. Is greater than mine to get him to leave.

It's freaking miserable really, it's like my view on the relationship doesn't matter at all, who on earth would stay with someone that had professed to be unhappy in the relationship? Wants to split up, doesn't even really like the other party.

I think he is just desperate not to be alone and responsible for himself. I am desperate for the opposite.

Brycie Tue 16-Oct-12 02:43:40

I know how difficult your situation is but your first post reads like your husband has used up his usefulness. He was useful for secure home, children and companionship and now something better has come along and he's not useful any more. I'm so sorry this is very harsh. I feel very sorry for him.

Dryjuice25 Tue 16-Oct-12 15:11:05

Brycie, I cannot disagree more. It is possible that people grow apart. It is also possible that people outgrow each other even when dcs are involved. Anyone can end up in this situation. Op is not having an affair. She is deeply unhappy and her dh is ignoring her heartfelt concerns.

She possibly made a mistake getting with him but must she suffer all her life because of it? The dcs will pick up on this vibe. No-one is benefiting from this situation and let's not forget that the op has gone through a lot losing her husband before she met the current dp. I sympathize with both of them but he needs to understand that he can't have enough love for both of them

ohcluttergotme Tue 16-Oct-12 15:36:20

Iconfess I came into relationships to write up a post about wanting to leave dh and then saw yours, I probably would of wrote a heading similar to yours. I'm so sorry you feel like this and totally understand the turmoil you must be in. I met my dh when I was 22, he was 19 and my dd was 16 months old, we have now been together for 12 years, married for 4 and have a 3 yr old ds. I have said to my dh many times that I don't love him. He just gets emotional and says he loves me with all his heart, took on me and my dd when he was young, has devoted his life to making us happy and is willing to go the long haul and make us a good life. Everyone thinks he's a great guy, his family, my family, my friends but I just want to run away. I feel completely trapped. We own our house together, are crippled with mortgage payments for an interest only mortgage for a house in negative equity. My salary pays the childcare and I never have any money left. He buys all groceries, extras, etc.
I really don't know what to do as know he would never leave so if I want to I'll have to go and don't have anywhere to go or any money.
Not really helpful for you but really understand how you feel. x

Brycie Tue 16-Oct-12 17:38:30

I'm going to be harsh again, I think she should be prepared to leave her children with the person who puts their happiness first. The husband and children are benefiting from the situation.

Dryjuice25 Tue 16-Oct-12 23:51:22

Brycie-Are you voicing from a male perspective by any chance? I still disagree with your last comment

Brycie Wed 17-Oct-12 02:08:00


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