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Separation, new relationship - should I wait?

(27 Posts)
Shuang Tue 16-Dec-14 02:15:12

I realise that I am in a pretty muddy situation and so is my mind at the moment so will try to make it sound as clear and logic as possible.

Background information: been with DH for over 10 years, married for 8.5 yrs, 1 DS aged 3.5 yrs. Had ups and downs in the marriage but it got really cold since the birth of DS for various reasons e.g. my resentment towards zero help from him with baby and housework, him getting completely off me sexually after witnessing childbirth which added more resentment from my side.

Fast forward to this summer. Found out he had been having an affair (while refusing sex with me for years) for almost a year. He said it was a mistake and wanted to work on our marriage. Being such a fool and desperate to keep the family whole, I agreed. Fast forward another 5 months, discovered he had remained contacts with OW, of course including sexual contacts. Plus, he had been withdrawing money from credit card to pay OW's rent, deposit, hotel stay between moving places etc.

He kept minimising even after the second round of discovery and at the same time pleaded for another chance. One lie after another. Eventually he accepted that we are done and managed to have some reasonable conversations about separation agreement. He said he would move out at the end of January although refusing to give me the proof of his confirmation with renting agency. So basically that's what has been going on within my marriage in a nutshell.

On the other hand, once we decided and agreed with parting our ways, I registered on an online dating website, kind of testing the water I guess. I put my current status 'separation under one roof' in my profile and asked only people who understand and accept it get in touch. Amongst those who got in touch, I particularly liked one and have been seeing him for a few weeks now. It has been amazing. Without making the post even longer with details, I like him and at times genuinely feel proud of being with him.

So now come to my questions and all advices are welcome -
1. Should I go straight to divorce rather than agreeing on separation first suggested by STBXH?
2. Should I have waited till everything is sorted and I have had some time alone before entering the dating scene? I read that people normally suggest 6 months, 1 year or more if needed before moving onto new relationships - is it unwise to start new relationships sooner or more precisely, under my current circumstances?
3. I know it is super early days with this person I am seeing but I wanted to make sure we were not wasting each other's time or investing too much emotionally for something not viable. So I asked him about his future plans. He is in his mid thirties, never married, no kids. He said he always wanted to get married and have kids e.g. two. My question about this is: given everything goes as smoothly as possible, by the time I get everything finally sorted in terms of my separation/divorce, it won't be practical, let alone ideal, for me (aged 41) to be with someone who wants kids, right?
He did say there are things you can't always predict. even if he was with someone in their 20s, there may still be the possibility of not having kids for various reasons. But for me, if it is not practically viable, I'd rather end it now than going through the agony later on hence wanting to ask for advice.
Thanks to all in advance. x

DoIknowitschristmas Tue 16-Dec-14 07:31:47

You sound all excited about this new man so I think whatever anyone says you are not likely to wait. Sometimes meeting someone straight after a bad relationship/marriage gives you hope and courage to move forward and reassures you that your previous relationship is firmly over.

I would be realistic and accept that however great this new guy is, it is unlikely to last a long time. Enjoy it for what it is and make sure he is clear about the children thing.

Shuang Tue 16-Dec-14 09:49:40

DoIKnowitschristmas thanks for the reply.

I am really excited about this new guy. You are right - to be with someone and feel truly happy about it make my day-to-day life easier and yes gives me hope that there can be meaningful relationships after a failed marriage. Despite of what my DH did to me - not just an affair itself, but lots of lies and disgusting details during the process - I tried to keep the good memories of the last decade and also to have a closure for myself. But I wasn't given this opportunity. He didn't want to sit down and have a heart-to-heart talk telling me how he felt, what happened with OW, his plan etc. So I accepted the fact that there won't be true closure and I won't have the chance to have a real mourning of the marriage when ending it.

Realistically I do have the feeling that it is not going to last very long with this new person especially because of the children thing. I have been broody from time to time and longed for another child but unfortunately haven't had the chance as there wasn't even sex with DH. I feel sad that I have just missed the opportunity like that and guess I wanted to hear people tell me that at this age yes I have to accept that's it - I have missed it.

And in that case I will let this new guy go for the relationship and family he wants. Then I will wait for a while before entering into new relationship, with someone with no children issue this time...

why do I feel so sad?

iloverunning36 Tue 16-Dec-14 10:08:21

Why can't you have kids in your 40s?

iloverunning36 Tue 16-Dec-14 10:12:03

Also with regards to waiting for a new relationship maybe you grieved for the relationship while still with your husband, like a slow realisation that it was never going to work as a pose to starting the 6 months or a year suggested time (?) from the official separation date.

Shuang Tue 16-Dec-14 10:33:56

iloverunning36 - good question. I am just thinking being 41 now, assuming the divorce is out of the way within a year, then I will be 42 at least. I know there are mums in their 40s, but somehow feel it will then be too late for me to start trying for another one at that age...

Re: your second point - that's the part I am also not certain about. I feel like I have been grieving for the marriage for a long time yet I will never be able to truly grieve it due to so many undisclosed feelings/facts from the DH's side. Lots of guess work indeed.

iloverunning36 Tue 16-Dec-14 19:15:49

What do you really want though? I think its a bit pessimistic to let him go and get that with someone else when he appears to have overcome obstacles to be with you? Maybe you could get everything you want (but never expected to have) look at any playground and anti natal group and there are plenty of mothers in their 40's. I just get the sense that you daren't hope for something you could actually have. Maybe your previous relationship has worn you down. flowers

Shuang Tue 16-Dec-14 21:19:17

iloverunning36 - thanks so much for the warm, encouraging words.

What do I really want - I want to make sure my son goes through this whole event with minimal negative impact, I want a loving, caring relationship that will last for the rest of my life and I want to be a mother again to a sibling for my son. Probably in the order I have put them down.

I somehow think I am wanting too much. I am also uncertain about how long the separation/divorce is going to drag on, if I have entered a new relationship too fast/soon, and if I am being unrealistic to dream about having another child after all of these. When I first got online, I was actually imagining I would probably meet someone who has already had his own children and is at similar stage of life as me. It didn't happen that way.

iloverunning36 Wed 17-Dec-14 08:02:53

They do say everything happens for a reason, I hope you get everything you want flowers

Strictlyison Wed 17-Dec-14 08:12:09

The thing is, often what you really want is only visible if you spend a bit of time on your own.

But what is done is done, I wouldn't have any issues dating someone new in your shoes. It looks as if he is making you feel good about yourself, but I would be careful not to get in too deep just now as you would fall from a great height if it didn't work out.

Even if you hadn't met someone else, I'd just go for the divorce right away as it's clear to me that your ex is a twat and you will not go back to him.

Shuang Thu 18-Dec-14 20:58:35

iloverunning - thank you! We could always hope :-)

Strictlyison - the separation first was proposed by STBXH. I suspected he was trying to delay the divorce so that i wouldn't be able to file for divorce on adultery basis (it will be six month in February I think since the second round of discovery and I had said I would name the OW as well.)

I went along with it for various reasons. Not to turn it into a bitter war is one of them. Also I believe if we agree on terms for separation and legalise it, then the court will very likely respect it during divorce. If I go for divorce straightaway, I have no idea how the judge will decide on everything, mainly finance-related.

avocadogreen Thu 18-Dec-14 21:27:16

Hi Shuang, I had to post as I have been there, done that smile. I would just say proceed with caution and protect yourself and DS. I went on online dating 3 months after separating from exH (also due to his affair). I was just so fed up of life being shit and thought I deserved some fun. I was cautious but went on one date and ended up seeing him for 5 months. I think after being so wholeheartedly rejected by exH, and being in a shit relationship for so long, it all seemed so wonderful and exciting to be with someone new. And I don't regret it, we had some amazing times and it certainly helped me move on.

But..and it's a big but.. I think it all became too intense too quickly. I introduced him to the kids, we had even started talking about moving in together (not straight away). And then suddenly it ended, it just kind of fizzled out but very abruptly. It hit me really hard, I cried an awful lot and felt very alone... and I realised that in many ways, by jumping straight into a new relationship, I hadn't fully come to terms with being on my own or fully grieved for the relationship with exH.

So, by all means keep seeing this new man, it will boost your confidence and give you some light relief. But don't put everything into it or get carried away, and make sure you make time for your friends as well as they will truly be the ones who will pick you up if it all goes wrong again.

Cabrinha Thu 18-Dec-14 21:50:41

You need to slow down and sort out your divorce!
Have you even had legal advice yet?
The judge doesn't decide your finances for you!
You and your ex negotiate them, possibly with mediators and / or solicitors, the solicitor writes it up as a Consent Order which the judge generally rubber stamps.

Separation agreement sounds like a waste of time, just get divorced.

I don't think you should stop seeing your new bloke, but I do think you should save a bit of energy for sorting out your divorce and living arrangements.

Shuang Thu 18-Dec-14 22:01:43

avocadogreen - thanks so much for sharing your experience. This experience of yours - was it recent? If so I hope you are feeling better and better every day.

I truly resonate with what you have described. I felt the same - at one point I was saying to myself: why should I wait for even longer after years of unhappiness? It does feel exciting and amazing probably by contrast but at the same time this is a person I would have appreciated anyway even out of romantic context - I think :-)

I said the same to him - even if it doesn't work out, I will not consider this experience a 'waste of time' and regret it. It is time well spent and enjoyed. There is distance between us so we haven't really spent regular time together. That is another point to be cautious about. If we ever get geographically together/closer, things may be different.

I feel the pain for you when reading your description about the end of the relationship. Take care.

In terms of introducing new partner to the kids, I set up a rule with my ex - we should wait at least, absolutely minimum 6 months after we are in a stable relationship before considering that. out of courtesy we should introduce them to each other first before to my son. In his case, I have met the other woman so it mostly applies to me for the moment

Shuang Thu 18-Dec-14 22:10:10

Hi Cabrinha - yes I went to see a solicitor in October and she kinda seconded the idea of separation with everything agreed first then move to divorce.

I think I need to consult a different solicitor soon after the holiday season and get it discussed with more details.

To be honest I wasn't in big hurry until recently as I don't really see the benefits of a speedy separation/divorce + my son is so happy to be with his daddy everyday. We live under the same roof, in separate bedrooms, he locked himself in his home office most of the time, continue to be the chauffeur while I do the washing/ironing in exchange. It didn't bother me that much, again, until recently.

I guess one of the benefits of long-distance relationship is I do save lots of energy LOL. Haven't spent a lot on sorting out divorce though. Just started a new demanding job and meanwhile trying to spend more time with my son. Haven't even got my Christmas shopping done yet... :-)

Cabrinha Thu 18-Dec-14 22:11:55

What on earth are you agreeing rules with your ex for?!!!
Why does he get a say in who you introduce and when?!
Not his business.
You can trust yourself to make thT decision, no?

As you say, you've already met the woman he cheated on you with - so he loses no control with this rule, you do. Bet he won't stick to your rule when he cheats on this woman and moves on. He's not really trustworthy and decent, is he?

I would quietly forget this rule discussion.
Introduce when you feel it's a good time, forget your cheating ex's opinion.

Cabrinha Thu 18-Dec-14 22:13:04

You do his ironing?
Bloody hell! shock

Shuang Thu 18-Dec-14 22:17:02

It was me who set up this rule and he just kind of agreed. I have seen this woman but my son hasn't. The rule means he will need to wait for at least six months after he moves out to introduce this woman - I would hate the thought of her being there when my son starts spending time with him as part of the arrangement.

For me, I don't plan to introduce anyone early on anyway so it doesn't matter in a way.

Shuang Thu 18-Dec-14 22:25:50

Cabrinha - yes I know! Life is normal by the look - he drops me off at and picks me up from the train station. Trade of services. Probably the only thing left in this marriage. very pathetic.

Cabrinha Thu 18-Dec-14 22:30:42

I suppose I just hate ironing so much that I can't see any amount if lifts being a good enough trade smile

Shuang Thu 18-Dec-14 22:38:12

LOL it's either a lift or not so reliable bus (and cold winter evenings standing at the bus stop) or an hour-long walk...

I also find it easier to tolerate many things I couldn't before because there is a timeline for it to end...

Cabrinha Thu 18-Dec-14 22:39:00

I would just steel yourself for him not waiting 6 months, or that 6 months being suddenly including these months now flowers

Cabrinha Thu 18-Dec-14 22:42:17

I totally get that!
My XH and I lived together for 4 months whilst I bought another house. I work away a lot which helped, I think. But you can't keep up the energy of hatred 24/7, it's easier just to be pleasant flatmates for a while. I was so happy to be shot of my ex, I coped fine with it too.
Just watch out for him finding that all very comfortable and not sorting out the rental.

Shuang Thu 18-Dec-14 22:45:55

Are you trying to encourage me to shorten the waiting time for the introduction? LOL

No. No matter how much I feel 17 again with this new guy - the introduction to DS will have to wait for quite a while.

Thanks for the flowers by the way. Only received two bunches during the last 12 months - both from STBXH, one on valentine's duplicate with OW (it broke her heart by the way having learnt that I also received flowers), the other on my birthday last month ( haven't surveyed her about this).

Cabrinha Thu 18-Dec-14 22:50:45

Oh, although I'm in the camp that says blame the XH not the OW, I have to admit I'm grin at the thought of her finding out about the flowers for you!

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