Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Letting go of sentimentality/hopes for the future

(18 Posts)
Flangeshrub Mon 01-Jun-15 06:43:30

My marriage ended on January 3rd this year. My DH of 10 years (3 DC) sat me down and told me he no longer loved me, swore on the children's lives that there was no OW, I knew he was lying.
I found messages on his laptop - has was in the grips of an affair with my child's gymnastics teacher.

I went through the usual script begging, pick me dance, but it was clear he had emotionally disengaged from me months (years?) before. He behaved like a cold-hearted monster. Lacking any emotion at all. There were no answers just a cold blank stare. Our youngest are 6 and 4 so we have had to stay in close verbal contact. He is (and remains) a wonderful (if you ignore fucking the teacher) father and we have 50/50 custody.

I moved out of the house within 9 days and set up a new home as I needed to go NC, he was strutting round like a king, loving my begging and screwing a younger women.

I ruined things slightly (for him not me!) by putting EVERYTHING publically on Facebook and his world imploded. We live in a small community and he became a social pariah. Oh dear. <<smallest violins in the world>>

His relationship with OW broke up quickly and he remains single. I then began to offer reconciliation (to my shame) but he just doesn't want to and won't engage in a conversation about it.

The kids have suffered greatly. Because there was no warning, we had got on fine, there was no arguments, we appeared happy it was such a shock.

My whole M.O became to restore my family. I couldn't understand why we were living in separate homes when the kids were so distressed but he just doesn't care. He doesn't love or want me.

Anyway 5 months on I'm doing really well. I had started a new job 3 weeks before D day (bastard) so the added stress of that nearly did me in. I couldn't take an HOUR off work because I was in my probation period. I was crying in corners secretly.

I've passed my probation and enjoy my job. I've even started dating. I've had 5 dates. I've even 'broken the seal'. I had rampant sex with one of my dates who I had the most amazing chemistry with. I'm not ready for a relationship.

What I'm struggling with is letting go of my hopes and dreams. I honestly thought I would be married to him forever. I am the most perceptive person usually and never predicted this (no one did, it shocked everyone who knows him)! I honestly don't think I'm going to get over this.
I feel so disappointed for my children (girls). I had a pretty disappointing father and really thought I'd picked a goodun'. How could I have made such a mistake?? I know I will not want them to to trust men as they grow. I will never trust another man as long as I live.
How can someone you love and trust hurt you so deeply? How can you be sleeping with the enemy and not know it?

Can anyone relate?

siblingrevelryagain Mon 01-Jun-15 07:02:42

I can totally relate (apart from the father bit; I am lucky enough to have an amazing Dad).

It's been a year for me now, kids are doing great. I will get there too I think.

As well as tainting the future and the plans we/I had, what my ex did has tainted my happy past. Since it happened I've not been able to watch films of the kids as babies, and i can't go through the special drawer where i keep the memorabilia from when they were born. Those years were the happiest times for me, but now it seems like it was maybe all false? i can't really explain it; maybe it's as simple as being reminded of how happy i was makes it harder to deal with it being gone?

And I struggle to believe that MY children are from a broken home. I imagine everyone feels this, as no one chooses to go into marriage and kids knowing they'll split up, but my overwhelming feelings were (and prob still are) that my kids are too special/too loved to deserve their Dad to make them from a broken family. He is a great Dad too, so it's harder to understand that he'd lay in front of a speeding train for them without questioning, yet couldn't do something easier for them like not having an affair.

I'm now trying to focus on my family as being me and the kids. I guess we both just have to accept our futures as we planned have gone.

siblingrevelryagain Mon 01-Jun-15 07:08:08

The sentimentality side is hard to let go of OP. Like me, having spent so long together you'll have lots of key moments with sentimental feelings/objects attached.

Even things like songs & movies are ruined for me, as having been together over 18 years, most songs and films have either significance, or we've watched them together etc. we had a band that was a particular favourite of both of ours (he got me into them, then I loved them), and for now i can't even listen to their songs without being sad. So mostly i don't! He's ruined them for me too.

We're both having to erase our past and attach feelings to new people/experiences/things.

aurynne Mon 01-Jun-15 07:33:04

I am appalled at how many cheating bastards "swear on their children's lives" with so much ease. Obviously do not appreciate their children's lives that much.

antimatter Mon 01-Jun-15 07:40:51

If you believe statistics that nearly 50% of people who are in relationships cheat you can't blame yourself for not choosing someone who wouldn't cheat.

If chances of marrying someone who would be faithful are 50% it means that every other person you know who is in relationship cheats!
Sobering thought!

deckthehallswithdesperation Mon 01-Jun-15 07:42:43

Unbelievably, I let go of my dreams a good 8 - 10 years ago! It's taken that long for me to fall off the divorce cliff! In the end you get sooo desperate, you accept losing everything just to rid yourself of the insanity.

Cassawoof Mon 01-Jun-15 08:51:46

I can completely relate to this too. They take both your past and your future from you, and nothing is the same again. My H didn't cheat, we just had a hard time with life and he emotionally withdrew, and by the time he told me it was too late for me to do anything about.

And it is amazing how they can just walk away, from a home, children, family life, and in my case, not even for an OW. I have realised he is so emotionally closed that actually just looking after himself is probably what he wants.

Like you I never dreamt I would be a single mother and my children from a broken home. And they are probably similar ages to OPs. The frustrating thing, is having gotten through the baby years, they were both finally at school and life was getting easier...

I think you are doing great OP, I'm 10 months in and not nearly as sorted as you sound.

Flangeshrub Mon 01-Jun-15 10:34:57

Thanks everyone, I'm not that deluded to know this isn't being played out in loads of other homes, and I'm sorry for everyone's loss and pain.

Cassawoof that is it exactly, we had just got through the hard years. My new job was a demotion to make his life easier, everything was getting better. I guess he felt it was 'safe' to leave then? Like yours I think mine just wants himself to look after. He honestly doesn't look remotely interested in meeting anyone else and looks so happy living alone. He said the affair was a means to an end. I don't know why he's not sad. My 6 year wrote him a letter begging him to get back with me saying she was so sad she wanted to die. When we talked about it he wasn't remotely moved by it, completely unaffected as if looking at a shopping list.

I wonder has he always been shallow and dead inside or has he become like this. I'm just so confused.

I know I need to stop giving him brain space but it's hard when we speak every day about the kids.

badbaldingballerina123 Mon 01-Jun-15 11:53:59

It's still really early days. I think you've done really well. Is daily contact about the dcs necessary ?

Flangeshrub Mon 01-Jun-15 12:40:34

I really limit it but we have 50/50 custody and almost alternate nights because of my shifts (nurse). With uniform/homework/after school things and the mental health problems they both suffer now (nothing to do with him of course!) we have to speak almost every day. For example they are both attached to soft toys and want them from house to house.

It is brief and factual but constant. Also my youngest has probably ASD and needs extra support, doesn't sleep, not dry at night etc. so much to discuss.

Oh I wish he'd just died. Be cleaner all round and I'd get his good pension.

badbaldingballerina123 Mon 01-Jun-15 12:54:21

Have you started divorce proceedings yet ?

In my experience it takes a couple of years to completely get over it. I said I'd never trust someone again , would never get married, but I have.

SaucyJack Mon 01-Jun-15 13:00:16

I can't relate (my ex was an arsehole in plain sight) but I just wanted to say that it was nothing you did, and no reflection on the choices you made.

He was your husband, and you were fulfilling your side of the relationship by loving and trusting him. You could not have seen this coming.

The fault is entirely his for being a lying, two-faced cheat.

Don't lost your faith.

whatyouseeiswhatyouget Mon 01-Jun-15 13:13:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

skyeskyeskye Mon 01-Jun-15 13:30:58

flange I could have written a lot of what sibling wrote. I am 3 years on, but still struggling to come to terms with the loss of my husband and family. I no longer want the actual man himself back.... But I can't look at photos, I can't listen to certain music. I see a baby photo and it makes me cry because we were happy then and he loved me then and we were a family then ....

Mine too was a complete shock, he left me right out of the blue, claimed there was noone else, I discovered thousands of texts to OW (his mates wife). XH became cold and callous, no care for my feelings at all, no comment as to his DD's problems. (she now has anxiety issues due to him leaving and constantly letting her down now with contact) She is 7 and has to take a cuddly toy everywhere with her for reassurance. Luckily her teacher is very understanding and has been brilliant with her.

XH and OW had an affair for 18 months, then she left her H. They are now living 2.5 hours away with their 3 month old baby. He sees DD every 3 weeks and that is all.

So in the space of 3 years, XH has had OW around him all the time and has now recreated his family (the family life he did not want!) and I feel like he has it all and I don't.

I too wish he had died, often said this to my counsellor. Said it today to my Pyschotherapist. I have had to grieve for him, although he is not dead. I have had to grieve for him while he treats me and his DD like shit. he is now verbally abusive, ignores emails. He is a total stranger to the man that I knew.

It is hard to let go of the future that you thought you had, the things you planned to do with the DC as they grow up, the places you were going to go....

But the important thing to remember is that the future is always unknown. I am coming to realise that you create your own happiness and your own dreams and while I still struggle at times, it is up to me to build happy memories for DD and to give her a happy life.

It is hard to trust again and I don't know that I ever will fully, but again, it all depends on the person that you are with.

holdyourown Mon 01-Jun-15 13:31:21

You might find the book 'Runaway husbands' really helpful (amazon) Lots of us can relate to what you're going through. You sound like you're doing really well. It will get easier with time flowers

Mrscaindingle Mon 01-Jun-15 20:56:51

The book Runaway Husbands was my bible for a while and two years on I still dig it out if I'm having a hard time.
I think Op it is still really early days for you, I am two years further down the line and still have some difficult times although the good days are getting more frequent. It's like grief and comes over you in waves, sometimes when you are least expecting it.
I so relate to whatyou and skyes posts it's scary to think that there are so many men out there who do this and no one who knew them would have ever thought them capable of it.

Midorichan Mon 01-Jun-15 21:12:49

Dearest, the good people tend to see the best in people. You saw the best in him, and your future. The trouble is, people are HUMAN - it may have been that he truly was "the one" but you have NO control how situations placed upon you (including other people etc), and the other person's own thoughts and emotions etc will drive them to act. You, and no one one else for that matter, is responsible for any one person's behaviour. They are ENTIRELY responsible. You could honestly marry Prince Charming/Jesus or whatever and you STILL will never know how they will react/change due to life. You can predict, but you can't ever truly know. You did your best, but ultimately, it was down to him, his problems, and I'm sure down the line he will finally look back and realise what he effed up. It may be at that point he comes back to you but by then it may be too late because you've already met someone else. For now though all I would say is do the best by your kids - I remember so clearly how my mum went downhill after her marriage to my dad broke up. It wrecked my childhood. But you seem to be doing a STELLAR, amazing job. keep at it smile I wish you all the very best - know you are never alone, you may not know us but we are always here if you need an ear.

Flangeshrub Mon 01-Jun-15 21:58:07

Runaway Husbands is my bible and stopped me actually going insane. I read it about once a fortnight at the moment.
Knowing you are not alone with this is really helpful. It is a shit hand and we just have to deal with it. Although is it? Maybe we'll look back in a few years and see why he wasn't right and be glad it happened. Who knows?
Thanks everyone.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now