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Finding your own happiness-selfish?

(8 Posts)
Muddledmind Wed 15-Feb-17 00:27:18

Not sure what I'm looking for but here goes. I am in my 30's been married for 6 years, with partner since 17. He was everything I felt I wasn't and only ever dreamt of having a relationship that lasted forever, having children that were brought up in a close family with parents together. I'm from a broken home, my husbands family very close and all with their first partners.
7 years ago, I found out about an affair my partner was having and I felt my life had ended. We had a mortgage, I panicked and begged him to stay. I put unnecessary pressure on myself that I'd never find someone and therefore risk never having children. We worked through it but I spent at least 5 years torturing myself with thoughts of this other woman.
We married a year after the affair because we decided we wanted to try for children. We now have 2 wonderful children who we both adore. However over the years I feel we no longer care for each other. We have had a turbulent relationship and argue a lot even in front of the children, which I hate but don't seem to be able to control. I feel I am provoked and then put down when I've reacted to feel like a poor mother. We no longer spend any alone time together. We spend evenings in separate rooms and I feel ever so lonely.
I just don't know when enough is enough and whether telling your kids in x many years that the reason their parents aren't together was because mummy thought she could be happier is a good enough reason. I feel like I'm waiting for something 'major' to happen to be the turning point and I've already missed so many opportunities but I stuck around.
I just feel so guilty for not loving their father anymore but I know every day I stick it out is another day of not finding happiness for me.
All of my feelings are made worse by the fact that he just doesn't seem to see it and is happy!? I think he is scared of the change it would bring and even the fact that I am the main earner so the effect it would have on him financially. And of course not seeing the children every day which for both of us would be heartbreaking.

honeyroar Wed 15-Feb-17 01:57:57

My parents were a bit like that. They stayed together for their children. They lived semi separate lives as well as doing family things. Decades later (I was 33) mum kind of met someone else and left - she said she felt married but not married.. After the initial upset, everything settled down and she and my dad have ended up great friends (her new relationship didn't last long). They still meet up regularly and help each other out. Sometimes I wonder why they're not still together, but if they spend more than a day together they start to squabble and I remember!

Hidingtonothing Wed 15-Feb-17 02:08:55

I think (providing DC are thought about and their feelings and needs are considered obviously) that happy parents are actually pretty important and staying in an unhappy marriage is probably more damaging to them than leaving could ever be. I totally get the needing something major to sort of justify (if that's the right word?) making that big a change but you could wait forever and then you've wasted all that time being miserable.

The older I get the more I realise life really is short and we have to wring every bit of happiness out of it we possibly can. You deserve more than killing time in a relationship that doesn't make you happy.

housewifedesperate Wed 15-Feb-17 06:20:54

You deserve happiness muddle, it doesn't sound like you're happy at all at the moment.
I stuck it out 6 years after my ex h had an affair, thinking it best for the children. He put me through hell the last years of our marriage and eventually walked out to be with someone else anyway.
My children have actually told me they could see our relationship wasn't a good one. They see more than you think. Of course, it would be best if children were raised in a happy, positive relationship but it's really not good for them to see you in a bad, toxic one.
Your relationship probably won't get any better. You're not being selfish, you're doing the right thing for everyone. Your children will eventually see that.
I know it's really hard because I never actually made the decision to end the relationship, he made that by having an affair (again) but in hindsight I'm really glad it ended. It's horribly soul destroying being in a toxic relationship. Everyone deserves better.

noego Wed 15-Feb-17 16:18:45

Thoughts are not interesting.
It is you who become interested in thoughts.
A thought is not interesting of its own accord.
If a thought was interesting,
that same thought would be interesting for everybody.
We would have no defence against it,
‘This is just an interesting thought!’
It would be a fact.
The Truth is: no thought is interesting;
it is you who have become interested.
Thoughts are only interesting for the ego.
Once embraced as real they move in
and become a member of your house.
Neither the house nor its tenant are real.
Once a thought gets inside, it is hard to get him out.
The one who looks with a clear and even mind
conquers the mind and is free for all time.

Free of the mind = Happiness

Adora10 Wed 15-Feb-17 16:46:58

We have had a turbulent relationship and argue a lot even in front of the children, which I hate but don't seem to be able to control

This is 100% not good and is 100% enough to end this joke of a relationship; and that's without even mentioning his affair, show your children that you are not a doormat because he will do it again, he will let you down again.....

You can control what you expose your children to, leave him.

TheNaze73 Wed 15-Feb-17 17:08:33

Well said Adora

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 15-Feb-17 17:15:32

I agree this sounds contradictory, a turbulent time but DH seems happy?

That affair your partner had pre-marriage would have scuppered many relationships. Now things are unravelling again. Any chance something is going on he hasn't told you about?

You deserve happiness, if his family all enjoy settled relationships bully for them, nobody knows what really goes on behind closed doors.
Better to get your ducks in a row ie look into what finances are like and how you would arrange childcare then talk to him before things deteriorate or worse still, an exit affair blows this household apart.

People sometimes make the mistake of waiting to separate when the youngest turns 18 or a child goes to university. That can lead their children to think a large part of their lives was a sham and makes them sad and cynical about adult relationships. Or in some cases the children knew all along things were bad and wonder why mum and dad waited so long.

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