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My wife has checked out - I need help

(183 Posts)
KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 12:01:10

As the title suggests my marriage has crumbled around me and I don't know what to do! I suppose I best start with a run through of my currently situation.

My wife and I have been together for 8 years and married for 2, I am 29 and she is 30. We have 2 beautiful daughters (5, 11) and have lived with each other for just short of 6 years. For the most part our relationship has been plain sailing, very infrequent arguments, very intimate, enjoy each others company and co-parent well.

Everything was fine, then on the 17th April my world fell down around me. My W returned home after an evening around a friends and told me that she was unhappy and needed space to sort through her feelings and figure out what was causing it. Reluctantly I agreed to move to my parents and give her space as I could see how upset and serious she was.....After 9 days of moving out I got a phone call from my wife telling me that it was over and gave me the dreaded "I love you but I'm not in love with you", to this day this is the only reason I have been given.

This news hit me hard and for the first 5 weeks I chased and pursued, sending her letters, phoning and texting all of which were met with a cold, distant response. I asked her to fight for our marriage to which she responded "I don't want to fight" and "I don't want a relationship I have to fight for".

My wife turned 30 in January (I don't know if this is significant) and 2016 has been tough. Financially things have been tough with debts mounting up and the constant feeling of money coming to one hand and out the other, childcare has been difficult with both me and my W working full time and there was always this constant feeling that we never had time for the kids. I only see it now but in March my W starting acting a bit erratic, she decided we were moving in with my mother in law to save for a mortgage (which fell through, she decided we were moving to Australia (which fell through), she feel out with close family over the silliest of things and she accused my family of bullying our 11 year old.

The only time I now see or speak to my wife is in relation to the children, when I do she always has a smile on her face and appears happy. I just don't really know what to do?

If anyone needs more information please don't hesitate to ask.

MassiveStrumpet Mon 20-Jun-16 12:06:44

I think you should let her go and focus on how best to coparent your children. She's not just "checked out" - she has very clearly ended the relationship.

Lawyer up, focus on the needs of the children, and stop trying to fix relationship. The sooner you do the sooner you can move on with your own life.

hellsbellsmelons Mon 20-Jun-16 12:07:08

She had her head turned by another man or woman.
Simple as that really.
She's ended the relationship.
You need to learn to accept that.
You say you have an 11 YO. I assume this is your DW from another relationship.

So now you have to get legal advice and decide what you want to do.
Do you want the kids to remain in the house until they are 18?
Do you have any equity in the house?
Is your DW a SAHM? Or does she work?
You now to get practical and sort out housing and finances.
Do you want 50:50 custody of the kids?
I would get some legal advice from a solicitor and take it from there.

I'm sorry this has happened to you.
It's not nice and so many of us have been there and got the t-shirt.
Be kind to yourself!

coco1810 Mon 20-Jun-16 12:34:04

It takes two to save a relationship and unfortunately your wife seems unwilling or unable to do so. You can't make her do either, she has to decide and act upon that herself. I agree with the PP that your priority now has to be yourself and your children. They need stability in all of this and they will be looking to you both to have it. You need to make some decisions about what type of custody you want, who will be paying who maintenance, where will you be living and will you have room to provide care for your children?

To be blunt, you need to stop chasing and focus on yourself and your kids and only yourself and kids. Get in touch with a lawyer and talk through the possibilities. Above all, be a dad to your kids.

SandyY2K Mon 20-Jun-16 14:33:37

I smell an affair.

From now on don't communicate with her unless it's related to the kids.

Look happy and joyful when you see her. Like life is treating you well.

Start actually living and socialising and getting yourself out.

Discuss divorce and don't be kept in limbo. Ask when she'd filing for divorce. That will probably shock her.

loobyloo1234 Mon 20-Jun-16 14:41:31

OP - you say you have been together for 8 years. But have a DD of 11. Is that a typo? Just trying to get the facts. There are some really wise MN'ers out there, they will be with you soon I'm sure

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 15:07:51

Thank you everyone for your responses.

No typo I do have a D11, she isn't biologically mine but the dad isn't on the scene so have always thought of her as mine.

I understand why people believe there is another man but I'm certain there isn't, she has openly told people that she just wants to be alone and there is no evidence to support it. Since I've left she's pretty much isolated herself from anyone close to her, the care she is giving my children is slipping and she is acting rather irrationally.

I've been told by multiple people that she isn't herself and is acting very out of character. In my mind it feels like she's just snapped.

loobyloo1234 Mon 20-Jun-16 15:37:08

Ok OP. With you now. You seem like a good man. She does however sound like she has more than checked out of the marriage. Unfortunately the ball sounds very much in her court

I don't necessarily agree with the PP who say it must be an affair etc - maybe she genuinely does just love you, and is not in love with you. It does happen sad

All you can do, is be there for your DD's and give her some space in my opinion. Although it doesn't sound like she is likely to change her mind so you need to prepare for a life without her. You will be fine - time is a healer

hellsbellsmelons Mon 20-Jun-16 16:26:17

She may well have some mental health issues she is trying to deal with.
From what you type she could be depressed.
Could you persuade her to go the GP?
She needs some help.

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 16:49:03

I strongly believe there is not another man involved. There has been no evidence that there is and she is telling all of her close friends and family that she jus wants to be alone.

I've been very good at giving her space and for the past 4 weeks our only conversation have been focused around the kids and when I'm around her I act happy and indifferent. This is getting some kind of reaction because the more distant I become the more warm and friendly she becomes.

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 16:52:38

It's funny you mention depression as I'm certain that there is more to this then meets the eye. She has changed quite dramatically in a very short space of time and everyone can see it apart from her.

My mother in law tried to approach the subject with my wife and her response was "I'm not depressed, I'm not weak like you"

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 16:52:40

It's funny you mention depression as I'm certain that there is more to this then meets the eye. She has changed quite dramatically in a very short space of time and everyone can see it apart from her.

My mother in law tried to approach the subject with my wife and her response was "I'm not depressed, I'm not weak like you"

Iflyaway Mon 20-Jun-16 17:49:07

So sorry you are going through this. A relationship breaking up is shit, with kids in the mix it is even shittier.... (been through it).

If as you say she is starting to behave more irrationally, have you any indication this is happening at work too? Any feedback from mutual friends/colleagues?

I think it is rather cruel of her to just cut you off and leave you hanging without a proper conversation about why she wants to end the relationship. But it's how it is and it's no good for you to go flogging a dead horse so to speak, start to focus your energy on your new future.

DietTissues Mon 20-Jun-16 17:57:13

Could turning 30 have anything to do with it? I know when I turned 30 I was stressing because I hadn't done this or that. Once 30 was over I was calmer, but having a child at 19 means throughout her 20s (when I believe a lot of 'growing up' happens) it was all about the children I guess.

I could be wrong but when you say about saving for a mortgage / moving to Australia could it be she feels something is missing in her life and turning 30 she has had a realisation that life goes so quick so she's looking for that missing thing?

From the sounds of it the marriage is over, although I wouldn't necessarily say there is anyone else.

Sorry you are going through this flowers

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 18:06:00

With regards to work I know she's taken quite a few days off since, which isn't like her as she's a teacher in a private school and loves her job.

I've been told that she's dropped 2 stone in weight since I've left and she hasn't been sleeping properly often staying awake past 2am (she has blames it on her body clock).

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 18:11:41

I have also thought that her turning 30 could be significant and I've read a lot about quarter life crisis. The Australia thing was crazy, I was at work one day and she messaged me saying we were emigrating to Australia and had made several phone calls and even set up a sponsor! I got home and it was all but done and sorted, I had no real say in it. It's only when she discovered she needed to do another year at university that it all began to unravel.

DietTissues Mon 20-Jun-16 18:26:46

A symptom of depression is tendencies to make huge life changing plans, could be that she may not want to admit it so she's not seen a 'weak like her mam'

Although, it could just be a case of falling out of love with you unfortunately x

zoobeedoo Mon 20-Jun-16 19:10:14

She sounds manic from your description. My dad is like this, impulsive decisions

zoobeedoo Mon 20-Jun-16 19:13:19

Posted too early. He has manic depression.

trickleupeffect Mon 20-Jun-16 19:19:42

She could be bipolar. That's very possible.
However, she could have been desperately trying to change everything else under the sun before admitting to herself that it was your marriage that had to change.
If she seems happier when you see her, that is very likely, sorry.

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 19:48:32

She has impulsively booked a trip to America on the 1st of July, she chucked it all on a credit card and is going by herself and staying in a hostel. She did all of this without even making sure I or someone else could have the kids. I know this because a mutual friend was present when she booked it as has fed the information back to me.

KyleM Mon 20-Jun-16 23:16:35

It seems like me keeping my distance is having some kind of affect on my wife. She seems to have convinced herself I am in contact with other women, seeking comfort in them etc.

This couldn't be further from the truth and makes no sense to me at all!

JayDot500 Mon 20-Jun-16 23:48:24

Stay in contact with her mother for now. Respect her need for space, but it does sound as though she may be on the verge of a breakdown at the most, or in need of thinking space at the least.

stonecircle Tue 21-Jun-16 00:01:38

I'm no expert but it does sound a lot like bipolar disorder.

KyleM Tue 21-Jun-16 00:16:20

Can that just show up out the blue after 30 years though? Can't say there has ever been signs before.

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