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I know this won't end well but here we go...

(53 Posts)
WoolieJumper Sat 18-Feb-17 21:53:16

DH and I have been together 8yrs. We have DC.

By nature he's someone who will plod along in life and is a steady kind of guy. I'm a bit more adventurous but not to any extremes, I just like life to not pass me by.

Over the last year or so, I've been increasingly discontent. He naturally needs less sleep than I do and I know I can't make him be tired but we always used to go to bed at the same time (when he had a different job, which meant he needed to get up earlier) and I really valued the time to chat, cuddle and just have a quiet half hour where we regrouped after a day (we both work FT)

As a compromise I've asked him to come to bed with me twice a week or so which is usually around 11.00/11.30 during the week and for the most part, he doesn't. He will if he wants sex though, which does grate as it feels like it's on his terms and for his benefit.

Obviously, this in itself isn't a massive, marriage-ending issue but is a symptom of other niggles. We don't seem to have any common interests, certainly not as many as we did when we first were married and I find his lack of imagination for things to do as a family very frustrating. He'd be quite happy to let the DC stay in all weekend, every weekend and whilst I don't mind doing this the odd weekend, it does get me down as I feel their weekends are being wasted but the default position is that I organise or plan something or else we do nothing.

I've been raising this as an issue with him for the last year or so, pleading with him to put more effort in to not plodding along in life and to invest time me and our marriage/our family but he doesn't. He thinks I'm being 'ridiculous' when I say I'm not that happy and want things to change. He's a great dad in the day to day stuff but it's like groundhog day.

And so the cliche begins...a very old flame got in touch towards the end of last year. We are both married although I'm the only one with DC. We have met up a couple of times and whilst there's been no sex, we have kissed and talked a lot about the road we are going down but we are certainly not star crossed lovers, or think that we are.

I know I'm playing with fire and it won't end well but I can't work out what to do for the best. I know this situation has come out of the discontent I've been feeling for the last year or so and I'm under no illusion that this old flame is a better option but the excitement is there and he's a part of my 'old' life that I was never really ready to let go and he's a lot more gregarious and proactive than my DH, which I like and admire.

I don't know how to make this situation better. In an ideal world, DH and I would come back from this as he's the father of my children but I don't know how many times I can talk to him about the same thing and he do nothing about it. He has an unwavering confidence in that we will be together forever but seems to forget that this takes work, on both our parts. But how do I make him realise the gravity of the situation without telling him my head has been turned? Or should I? I sometimes think that this is just him and I should accept we are different in this respect but he wasn't always like this. He's become lazy in making an effort, I suppose.

I know it's a cliche, I really do. I don't expect life to be full of excitement and romance but I do want to feel as though our marriage is being invested in. I book the weekends away, concerts, night's out etc. and he never ever does, even when he knows I find it important. Our weeks would follow the same routine if it were up to him - watching the same TV shows on each day, football on Saturday etc.

I know I'll probably get hauled over the coals for this but I want to get some practical advice before I get past the point of no return, in terms of my actions.

Alternatively, if this is just normal married life with DC then please tell me and I will suck it up!

We are both in our 30s with primary aged DC.

ImperialBlether Sat 18-Feb-17 21:59:06

You're just one step further on from the poster on another thread at the moment who says she's really bored in her marriage.

I think you should step away from the other guy and do something about your marriage, whether that's leaving him or forcing him to help make it worse. Another person involved really muddies everything and his wife really deserves much, much better treatment than this.

TheStoic Sat 18-Feb-17 22:01:40

The OM represents an escape. Practical advice? Cut all contact with him as a matter of priority. Don't think about it, just do it.

Next, arrange a session of counselling for you and your husband, where you can bring all this resentment to the surface with a third party. Don't think about it, just do it.

Good luck.

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Sat 18-Feb-17 22:01:57

'The grass is always greener' IMO. If you aren't happy then the right thing to do would be to end your relationship and move on. Going behind your OHs back with someone else won't solve anything.

JK1773 Sat 18-Feb-17 22:08:19

Oh dear, poor you. I was in the same situation exactly although I never met up with the OM and I don't have dc.

If you want your marriage to work you must cut off contact with the other man firstly. Your DH sounds lazy and he's taking you for granted. I'll say you need to spell it out for him once and for all, tell him that unless things change then that's it. That's what I did (I got shouted at, blamed then he walked out). He needs to know how serious the situation has become and given an opportunity to put it right. You won't give him a fair chance if your still in touch with the OM.

I gave my ex a chance but stayed in touch with the OM so in reality my heart was never really up for the second chance at all. I left and it was hard, really tough.

You've got some tough choices to make. If you give your DH a chance then do it whole heartedly otherwise that's not fair on him. For me the right choice was to leave, 2 years on I'm in a new relationship and never happier. Not with the OM. I met up with him after I got my own place and although nothing ever happened it was soon clear to me I'd used what I thought were my feelings to help me leave the ex. It turned out the OM had a gf I knew nothing about and was a manipulative liar. We live and learn.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do

Softkitty2 Sat 18-Feb-17 22:08:25

Your husband deserves more than to be cheated on. He is the father of your children and you should have enough respect for him to end the marriage before you start seeing someone else.

You are thinking the grass might be greener on the other side but you're judgement is very clouded because you are now comparing your husband to your old flame.

Be honest with your husband, give him an ultimatum if you like and say if things dont change you will walk away and not because you have another man possibly waiting for you.

Also he is married. His wife is being taken for a fool, so is your husband. Think of your children too and how your actions will affect them.

WoolieJumper Sat 18-Feb-17 22:13:55

How do I get DH to counselling without telling him why it's suddenly become so imperative that we go?

This dialogue has been going on for a year and he brushes me aside each time and says we are fine/I'm being ridiculous.

Slightly I agree, he's an escape and a reminder of easier times for me (no DH or DC etc), plus we were always 'unfinished business' for each other but I know that we are being pathetic about this and both our spouses deserve better.

WoolieJumper Sat 18-Feb-17 22:14:42

Sorry, I've x posted wigs a couple of posters!

heyday Sat 18-Feb-17 22:14:57

Old flame equals excitement, passion and fun.....but will also almost certainly herald the end of your marriage and the family break up....for what? A bit of excitement. Stop all contact with old flame....you are playing with fire. YOUR DH may have become a bit dull but I'm sure he would be absolutely gutted to know his beloved wife is snogging another man behind his back.
Nobody is perfect and all relationships have highs and lows. It's difficult if you're not both on the same page but are things really so bad that you can envisage the break up of this relationship and the family unit?
I suggest you find some friends to enjoy some fun times with.....without any snogging!!! And get your kicks that way. Perhaps you are the one who is better at organising the family's social calendar and giving your man a kick up the backside to get out and do things? Perhaps that's your strength and he has other attributes to bring to the relationship.
How long will old flame be exciting for once he has to deal with your heartbroken children all the time because the family home has been shattered by your deception?? He will be long gone once the crap hits the fan. Relationships are hard work and far from perfect.
If you really can't envisage living within this marriage for much longer then you have the right to leave but do it in a decent manner. Stop all contact with other guy, give yourself a bit of time then tell hubby that it's over. Of course outsiders who come on to the scene can be exciting and seem to be the answer to our restless souls but you are not free right now to look elsewhere and to do so is going to cause massive pain and heartbreak. Is that really what you want??

Confutatis Sat 18-Feb-17 22:16:52

I would advise you to read all the other threads on MN about similar situations and see if you liked the ways they variously ended up.

SandyY2K Sat 18-Feb-17 22:17:33

Be honest with your husband, give him an ultimatum if you like and say if things dont change you will walk.

Issuing ultimatums isn't the way to go. You've discussed your concerns and if you're not happy, make plans to exit rather than getting involved with another man. That's not a solution to your problems.

TheStoic Sat 18-Feb-17 22:18:08

How do I get DH to counselling without telling him why it's suddenly become so imperative that we go?

Well, is it imperative? Or do you intend to just stumble on together as you are now?

If it is a last-ditch effort, tell him that. Say you've been bringing these issues up for years, if they are not resolved one way or another, your marriage is over.

That's if you mean it, of course.

theansweris42 Sat 18-Feb-17 22:20:37

Ask him to counselling by emphasising that you're not in fact fine and you're unhappy , even if he doesn't think there's an issue...

Somerville Sat 18-Feb-17 22:22:22

Like PP's said, but it bears repeating...

1/ End the emotional affair before you fuck up two marriages and all the children involved.

2/ Give your husband an ultimatum that you need to attend marriage counselling together urgently. (You don't need to say why immediately, I don't think. During counselling it will become clear whether it needs to be discussed.)

GutInstinct Sat 18-Feb-17 22:28:10

You have potentially already reached the point of no return.

The fact you haven't had sex is irrelevant here, you've been meeting up in secret and have been physically intimate. You're having an affair. If your husband found out how do you think he would react, because there's a real possibility that he might decide that an affair is a deal breaker and he wants to end the marriage.

I'm not going to judge the affair, these things are rarely black and whitE, and are often born out of issues within the marriage and are more often than not a symptom rather than a cause. However, having an affair isn't the answer, and even if you are going to split, the affair will only add to the hurt that will already be caused.

You need to work out what you want, and you need to communicate this to your DH. Don't tell him that you've had your head turned, but do tell him that you've been thinking about leaving.

As for the OM, you know that he isn't the answer. He too has a wife, and is therefore an accomplished liar. A relationship built on the joint deceit of others where you have both lied to be together is unlikely to have a future because on the whole there will always be an element of mistrust. If he can do it with you then there's a chance he can do it to you, and he will likely have the same thought.

Cut all contact with him, then speak to your husband, but whatever you decide, the OM isn't available to you, so you need to forget about him, or you will potentially be complicit not only in the failure of your own marriage, but his as well.

And no, the grass most definitely isn't greener. FWIW I had an affair, and although I didn't leave for OM and the affair very much made me see that I could leave my emotionally abusive H, when I look back. Realise that the OM was more of a diversion, a catalyst which led me to realise that I needed to leave. But although I haven't had anything to do with him for a number of years, I do know that actually he was a self-centred arse and even if we had stayed together it would never have worked. As it happened the affair ended before I had left my H but it did make me realise that the marriage was over, so I proceeded to leave anyway.

Slightlyperturbedowlagain Sat 18-Feb-17 22:35:07

Well I guess you could suggest you need to go to counselling because frankly you are loosing the will to carry on in the marriage, or words to that effect. Shock tactics may work. Alternatively have you considered that the answer is more about finding something (not an affair) to make your own life more exciting? Downhill Mountain biking?parachuting? Hiking the Pyrenees? It doesn't actually have to be your DH you do these things with, and it might make you appreciate his plodding more?

Coffeegrain Sat 18-Feb-17 22:37:26

You're kidding yourself here. If you can be bothered to have counselling with your husband go for it. Otherwise have the balls to leave before getting involved further with the OM/ anyone else

Ciderandskatesdontmix Sat 18-Feb-17 22:38:49

Being unhappy in your relationship is reason enough to end it. If you've been trying to get things to change for a long time and nothing has improved then it shouldn't come as a huge shock to your oh.
You do need to cut all contact with the OM though, regardless of the outcome of your current relationship, it only serves to confuse matters. You need to do some soul searching and decide if your relationship can be fixed, if you want it to be fixed. Only you can decide that though.

AYankinSpanx Sat 18-Feb-17 22:45:58

plus we were always 'unfinished business' for each other

That well-trodden one is right down up there with 'my DH/DW doesn't understand me.'

There's some good advice on this thread OP. Hope you take it.

happypoobum Sat 18-Feb-17 22:46:14

It was a real trigger for me to hear how your DH regards any concerns you have as "ridiculous".

This was/is my XH favourite term for anything he disagrees with.

I totally agree with PP that you should not see old flame. I think your marriage is over. End it. Spend some time alone. Regroup. Live your life.

WoolieJumper Sat 18-Feb-17 22:49:03

Thank you all, for not flaming me to hell and back. It's more than I deserve, I know that.

You've all given some sound advice and there's a lot for me to think about.

I think it's very much a case of whether this OK marriage, where I am sort of happy is enough is bad enough to end and rock my children's life. I value the stability for them and is my happiness the price I pay for that, I don't know? They love their dad and he is a good dad and does more, in terms of their care, than a lot of men I know. He isn't as focussed on giving them memories as I am though, which maybe is the difference in our upbringing (mine was a lot more fun, even though we didn't have much money).

I think I need to sit down and have a proper talk with DH. I tend to raise my grievances when I'm at absolute breaking point and this is often after a couple of wines and so he may just take it as my tipsy rantings?

I do have a fairly full life otherwise. I love my work, I have a healthy social life linked to that and he is always OK with me going out after work, or for whatever I want to really, so there's no issues there.

I just wish he would want to do more with me, as a couple, as opposed to just being mum and dad all day, every day and I suppose that's what it will boil down to as to whether we survive. My DP's split up after my siblings and I flew the nest so I think I am conscious of making sure we have enough in common to make sure that doesn't happen to us. Possibly too conscious?

NotVeryImmaculate Sat 18-Feb-17 22:50:43

You've only got to look at all the threads on here, and the thousands more RL cases, to see how devastating an affair can be to the other non-complicit parties eg betrayed spouses, children

If you're so selfish and conceited that you can live with that then carry on

WoolieJumper Sat 18-Feb-17 22:51:28

AYankinSpanx I am more than aware of that. I know it's a cliche and I know we have our own reasons for pursuing this line. Mine are as above. His, I don't know.

WoolieJumper Sat 18-Feb-17 22:53:51

happypoobum it's incredibly frustrating for me when he dismisses my concerns with this and his unwavering belief that love conquers all. We love each other but he feels that is always enough, I feel I need more effort, I suppose? Maybe that's a fundamental difference in us and one that will never work or maybe we can work to understand the differences in our views?

nursy1 Sat 18-Feb-17 22:59:35

My OH of 25 years has never organised a family holiday or outing, I tell him when we are going out and remind him what everyone's name is. It's just not his strength. On the other hand, he works hard and earns a good life for us all. He is brilliant at DIY. He is appreciative of my efforts and openly acknowledges he wouldn't have a social life at all if I didn't organise it.
He is a bit of a homebody which sounds a lot like your husband.
Can you not try and expand your own circle of mates? I don't know, join some group or something. You sound like you need to get out a bit more than he does.
The route you are going with this OM only leads to pain and hurt for everyone involved. I agree with everyone on here that you should stop seeing him until you have resolved the problems here one way or another.

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