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Anyone married but not living together?

(24 Posts)
thecatsm0ther Tue 14-Jul-15 11:18:03

I'm at a crossroads in my marriage, I can't go on as we are, for lots of reasons. I'll not go into detail now, but currently dh and I are on the verge of splitting up. However, I still love him in a way and think very slowly we could get back to where we were. He says he still loves me, doesn't want to split.

I don't want freedom to meet someone else, I've sort of messed around a bit (not past flirting a lot though) and found that's not what I want either. I just want the freedom to be me and don't feel I can be that in a house with him together. I want to do what I want, when I want (within reason) - it's nothing drastic, just music, tv, food, cleaning, decorating .. that stuff. I don't feel I can do that in this house with him.

I know that probably says a lot about me ... rather than about him, but I cant change it at the moment.

So I wondered if anyone else has been in the same or a similar situation and has come up with a solution.

I want to spend time with him, but I want to sit on my own in the evening, watching trashy tv, or listening to my music, chatting on messenger if I like til 1 in the morning without the glares and awkward silences.

I haven't lived alone for about thirty years. I moved out of a long term relationship straight into another one and I know I should have lived alone then, but the situation was difficult, flats hard to come by, pay poor and it made more sense (it seemed at the time) to move in together in a nice place.

I can't turn back time, so I'm trying to find a way of making this work without wrecking everyone's lives. I reckon it's better for dd aged 14 to have 2 parents that get on, but don't live together, albeit close by, than to split up and fight over custody and stuff??


WherehaveIgoneto Tue 14-Jul-15 11:38:46

I'm not married, nor have any children, but I have just moved out from my DP to live alone.

I also left one long term (abusive) relationship to another and really felt I needed to time on my own, but love my DP.

I don't have much advice - your situation is different to mine, but I just wanted to share my experience.

It has worked very well for me. Having my own space and schedule has been incredibly refreshing and I feel a lot more free and less stressed. I can drink wine and watch TV till whatever time I wish. Get up when I want, go for runs etc. without worrying about someone else.

In terms of our relationship, it is better now, but I am not sure how or if we can transition back to living together.

thecatsm0ther Tue 14-Jul-15 11:41:33

Thanks WherehaveIgoneto, that's what I think too. We've had very difficult times recently and I can't be that stressed anymore. We need to sell the house anyway, it's bleeding us dry, so I think two small properties to rent for now would be a good interim situation until we see how we feel.

I'm aware a lot of people will think I want my cake and to eat it, but it's my life, I'm 50 years old and don't want to resign myself to something that doesn't feel right.

I'm glad it's working for you. Do you need to transition back to living together?

jamaisdeux Tue 14-Jul-15 11:48:55

Hello thecats I am in your situation.

I am married, with a DD (7) my husband has lived apart from me for 3 years now.

Initially, I was relieved, as he was very controlling, did no childcare at ALL! No housework, cooking/cleaning. I was left to do everything. When he moved out I suddenly (like today) had a day a week to myself and like you say, in the evenings I can watch what I like and eat what I like. No need to provide his exacting meal wishes.

However, I am now very lonely. Most evenings I am on my own in charge of DD, I feel so guilty when she goes off to see her father, I miss her.

We also don't want to get divorced for a variety of reasons, unless we meet other people which, is not going to happen.

It is tough but I do think on balance, the best of a not perfect situation. I also agree with your sentiment that it is better to have quality time with two happier and more peaceful parents than warring ones.

I make a big effort at Christmas and Easter and highdays and holidays, my husband is always invited to stay and I cook big family meals and make a fuss.

So far we are making it work but I can't say, after the initial relief, that I am happy.

I also live in my husbands country, not the UK, so it is probably more of an isolating situation than yours.


Toffeelatteplease Tue 14-Jul-15 11:52:40

Not married but don't live with dp. We both felt very suffocated living together and it really wasn't healthy in the end. No joint children. Been very happily not living together for nearly three years. We message daily (often morning noon and night), but usually only stay over one or two nights a week. We holiday together , have a fantastic time but are ready to kiss each other goodbye by the end. I can say either of us seem any less committed, but both of us are significantly happier and I can't imagine a time when I would want to go back to full time.

FWIW I too exited a disastrous marriage which I'm sure contributes to my need to maintain /own my own space

thecatsm0ther Tue 14-Jul-15 11:54:35

Thanks for the replies.

I think if we didn't live together it would be really good for our relationship, I'm sure we would message all the time too.

jamaisdeux Tue 14-Jul-15 12:00:29

To start with it was better for our relationship, but you do grow apart, most definitely, so be prepared for that. You have separate bills, shopping, you have to arrange childcare between you which can be difficult if you are not totally on the same page. You can phone or message but get no reply.

Either way though, of course it is better.

I also think that in your 40's/50's you are less likely to want to compromise and put up with things that you would have done in your 20's/30's.

All in all, I would say it is liberating. smile Just not perfect!

Myturnnow4 Tue 14-Jul-15 12:01:52

I am kind of in the other person's shoes. My DP has just left me because he doesn't love me any more.

So I would say, although you have the future worked out for you both, he may want something else. He'll be weeks behind you in terms of coping with the news of the split and in terms of coming up with plans for what happens next, but he'll catch up.

I know a couple of couples who live as you suggest, so it can work.

thecatsm0ther Tue 14-Jul-15 12:03:42

Really, really interesting to hear other people's experiences.

As my dd is 14 and can be left alone sometimes, I don't think I'd feel isolated. I have friends nearby I can visit or who visit me, and are more likely to do so if I live alone.

I like the thought of separate bills, shopping etc, asone of the things I'm unable to cope with anymore is the fact that dh is just a big child who won't handle responsibility for anything and gets us into a mess time and time again. I can't handle the stress of that anymore, he's a grown man and needs to take responsibility for himself.

flanjabelle Tue 14-Jul-15 12:05:38

Not married, but been together 7 years, with one child together. We lived together for 5 years then split for a short while last year. since then we have got back together but I haven't asked him to move in and I'm keeping it that way.

I like having my own space. I like not sharing my bed so I can sleep like a starfish across the whole thing. I like that once dd is in bed I can completely zone out and just be alone.

I enjoy our time together more, we don't get on each other's nerves like we used to. Our sex life is better. we make more of an effort to actually do things together rather than just sitting at home. we are pleased to see each other again.

My space is my space. I have just decorated my bedroom and I did it exactly how I wanted it without any input from him at all. it is perfect, serene and calming and I love it.

I don't have to share dd or have her away from me as he just sees her with me whenever.

There are so many positives to my situation, it's making me really happy.

flanjabelle Tue 14-Jul-15 12:10:56

Yy to own bills. Part of the reason we split was because he was irresponsible with money. Now everything is paid on time, I can allocate money to the right things etc.

Another thing is it's easier to keep tidy and clean as there is one less person to clean up after. it shouldn't be like that but it was.

jamaisdeux Tue 14-Jul-15 12:14:50

Oh my goodness yes to much easier to keep house/flat more tidy/clean.

Also, if you want to, you can have it messy!

thecatsm0ther Tue 14-Jul-15 12:17:48

God, yes to having my own bed and spreading out grin

thecatsm0ther Tue 14-Jul-15 12:18:36

I'm loving all this!

Snoozybird Tue 14-Jul-15 12:19:43

OP be careful about the money thing, as you are married you might still be jointly liable for any debts your DH runs up if you move out and leave him to it (depending on what they are secured on e.g. if he remortgages the house or runs up a joint account).

Does your DH know of your plans? And when you say live "alone" would you be leaving your DD behind?

Joysmum Tue 14-Jul-15 12:22:07

There are plenty of people in relationships for whom living together isn't something they want.

I think there's a big difference between that and not wanting to live together in order not to be in a relationship.

The traditional set up doesn't suit everybody and I'm a firm believe in couples doing what suits them without the need to compare themselves to others.

The key thing alway though is concensus and things are driven by both.

Branleuse Tue 14-Jul-15 12:24:14

me and my do do this. Weve been together 10 years but lived apart and shared childcare for the last 3 or 4. It has its pros and cons. Wed both like to move back together but its a high stress family (SEN), and neither of us want to be back where we were emotionally. This way we both get breaks.
The downside is ive had enough of the extra planning everything takes. Im still default childcarer and organiser. Plus side is when He takes the children I get a proper break

I dont see this as long term solution

thecatsm0ther Tue 14-Jul-15 12:28:11

Sorry, no not planning on leaving dd behind, she'll live with me.

yes, I'm not planning on abandoning him to his debt, and I'll be careful.

He doesn't know really yet, I did mention it once, but I don't think he took me seriously. I've suggested an evening at the pub to talk tonight, as things really aren't great at the moment, and dd hears everything that's said at home shock

jamaisdeux Tue 14-Jul-15 12:29:54

Yes, Branleuse to extra planning. The logistics of getting bags packed, things needed for an overnight stay. Suncream, whatever, it is a pain.

A lot of planning. Then guilt when the door shuts.

Yes to being default everything, to be honest. However, you do get a break.

No, I agree, I don't see it as long term now, like you, Bran I have lived apart from my husband for 3/4 years.

It starts to loose its shine somewhat. However, Op's DD is already 14, she will have more freedom to go out.

eggyellow Tue 14-Jul-15 12:36:48

DH and I have our own homes, we lived together in his home for a few years after we married but for the past year I've gradually been spending more time at my own home. I lived on my own (with my DS) for 13 years before I got married and I loved it, and couldn't get used to sharing space with DH.

We still spend a lot of time together and I spend most weekends at his place, but I like having everything to myself a few days a week. I am a lot messier than DH and it's nice to just relax and have things the way I want! It is more similar to how things were when we were just dating. We don't have dc together and have no plans to - I think it would be too complicated if we did.

Toffeelatteplease Tue 14-Jul-15 13:28:45

With respect if you are married and you have any concerns about your dh's tendency to run up debt you need some legal advice before you do anything. You can end up in massive mess very quickly living together or not.

The thing to make sure is that you don't yo yo. So if it works decide to move back in together only to find the same problems apply and it doesn't work. Unless you can do the whole eggyellow thing which is without doubt the least disruptive way.

thecatsm0ther Fri 17-Jul-15 14:09:36

For him living apart is not an option, he said.

APlaceOnTheCouch Fri 17-Jul-15 14:26:55

How did you respond when he made such a definite statement?

goddessofsmallthings Fri 17-Jul-15 14:36:17

For him living apart is not an option, he said

I trust you informed him that he may not get any choice in the matter and it's time for him to man up accept that his behaviour is/has contributed to your current state of mind.

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