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Committing to living a lie

(100 Posts)
MixedUpMuddledUp Mon 06-Mar-17 21:41:31

I've recently realised that after 15 or so years my marriage is going nowhere. We are good mates but I just don't feel anything beyond that.

DH is a decent bloke, a good Dad and in many ways a good husband. All sorts of stuff has contributed to me feeling this way, not least his burying his head in the sand despite knowing I'm not happy, but mainly it comes down to us just not being right for each other. I think I've always known this.

But I'm committed to staying together for the forseeable future because I feel we owe it to our DD (14). I know people will say you shouldn't stay together for kids but in our case I believe it's for the best. She's at an age where she needs the support of a family unit and if we split we'd both be worse off financially which would impact on her - she doesn't deserve to lose out just because we've screwed up. We get on well as a family - she's not living in a horrible atmosphere - so I think for now we're better off as we are.

But now I've made my decision I have to live with it and I'm finding it really hard. There seems no point to anything when I know it's going nowhere. We've been planning some DIY and home improvements, thinking about a holiday, but I just can't be arsed with any of it. I wish I could fast forward to when DD is a bit older but at the same time I don't want to wish her life away, these few years are precious before she goes her own way.

I just feel like I'm in limbo. An added complication is that I've recently started chatting to an old friend online and am feeling dangerously attracted to him. I know he's not the answer but the way I feel at the moment I'm running the risk of doing something stupid because I'm flattered and lonely and confused.

I know I should just call it quits with DH but I am determined not to put my own happiness above that of my DD. But I'm not sure, having committed to that, how to put it into practice sad.

AyeAmarok Mon 06-Mar-17 21:45:52

These threads are always exactly the same. A big list of "reasons" why you're not happy in your marriage even though you have been trucking along for a decade or more. But all of a sudden it just doesn't feel enough, it's been dead a long time really, not been any excitement for years... And then the inevitable "Oh, and I've met someone else". hmm

Stop giving yourself excuses to pursue or have an affair.

NapQueen Mon 06-Mar-17 21:47:28

Just leave. Kids are robust. And whatever you tell yourself to make yourself feel better - she will know. Just leave.

NapQueen Mon 06-Mar-17 21:48:10

Its also incredibly cruel to try and keep your dh in a half marriage. Let him go and find someone who actually wants to be with him.

quicklydecides Mon 06-Mar-17 21:48:53

Couldn't agree more. An added complication, ha ha that's a great phrase.

Lottapianos Mon 06-Mar-17 21:51:32

My parents stayed together 'for the kids'. We knew that our parents were miserable and we were asked to live a lie, knowing what was really going on but being expect to play happy families for our parent's sakes. It had messed us up terribly.

Your daughter will not thank you for living a miserable life and expecting her to be grateful for your sacrifice. Be honest with yourself about what you're getting out of this marriage.

tallwivglasses Mon 06-Mar-17 21:55:33

Your not so awful husband deserves to know how you feel. Please don't con him for years into thinking you'll grow old together. My friend instigated leaving her dh. She has young teenagers. He's really happy in a new relationship now. You'd want that too for your dh surely, seeing as you've already moved on in your head.

BeerMuggles Mon 06-Mar-17 21:59:34

He'll bail when he thinks your dc is officially grown up so initiate now so you can start the rest of your life now.

cantwaitforsummertimeeeeeee Mon 06-Mar-17 22:01:56

My parents stayed together for me well my mum did
I was 14 and reading your posts that could have been my mums word for word
She finally left him at 17 when she thought i was at an age I would accept it better but honestly I wish she did it when she was 14 because we were and still are like best friends and knowing what she went through ( being miserable and unhappy ) was awful for me to know she felt like that
I would have rather she left when she wanted to for her own happiness, mine and also my dads

I would say if you wasn't talking to another man then it may change things slightly but you are - you are trying to justify it?! You know it's wrong....and the money side of it is just materialistic stuff - you and your daughter will be me I speak
From experience
Don't set bad examples you wouldn't want your daughter setting

What would you be telling her if this was her as a young adult?

She will respect you for being truthful and honestly is the best policy

Good luck

HeddaGarbled Mon 06-Mar-17 22:02:36

Step away from the old friend online.

Split or commit.

You say your H knows you are unhappy but is burying his head in the sand. Does he know why you are unhappy? Is it something that can be fixed? Is it something he needs to do? Is it reasonable to ask of him?

If he isn't behaving badly, then to keep him locked into this loveless relationship while you indulge in your online flirtations until you dump him when you have no further use for him, is heartless.

SandyY2K Mon 06-Mar-17 22:02:48

If you've resigned yourself to stay in the marriage why are you posting here? What responses are you hoping or looking for?

You aren't happy, but is he happy?

If neither my DH or I were happy and for whatever reason we were staying for the kids, (but were able to live happily), I'd be discussing us each having outside discreet relationships to be happy.

Some couples do this and split once the DC have left home. I actually knew a DC from such a home, but she didn't realise till she was older that they only stayed together because of her.

Not many couples can pull it off though.

Kikikaakaa Mon 06-Mar-17 22:04:04

The first half of your post totally is contradicted by the 2nd half.
It's a big list of all the reasons why staying together is right and how it will work, then the second part is how it doesn't work at all confused

How can it be all those things but none of those things?

SandyY2K Mon 06-Mar-17 22:05:13

I know I should just call it quits with DH but I am determined not to put my own happiness above that of my DD

What of your DHs happiness? Or isn't that a concern of yours?

cantwaitforsummertimeeeeeee Mon 06-Mar-17 22:05:45

I agree stop talking to this other man whilst you decide

For everyone's benefit

He will be clouding your judgement

I'm in very different circs but I've just split from my abusive partner and there has been a male friend on the scene but he has backed off whilst I go through all of this

If it's meant to be it will be

You need time to decide what to do
Stay or commit as the others have said

It is black and white - well it would be for me as it's too much of a head fuck in my opinion

But it sounds like you've already made your decision

DioneTheDiabolist Mon 06-Mar-17 22:08:56

If you are really planning to leave when your DD is older, can you put your time and energy into improving your career OP? Unless you're minted, you will find separation expensive.

MixedUpMuddledUp Mon 06-Mar-17 22:21:34

I guess I was posting in the hope of advice from anyone who'd been in a similar situation or felt the same way. Maybe someone to tell me how I could make it work for all of us.

I do care about DH's happiness but he's known for a while that things aren't right and made no effort to change anything. I've suggested all sorts from counselling to moving house but nothing ever happens and I'm tired of always being the one to try and fix things. Just because he ticks many of the boxes of being a good husband doesn't mean he's completely blameless.

My parents split when I was a similar age and it was awful, DD doesn't deserve to go through that. I know it won't be much better when she's older but to do it in the run-up to her exams would be particularly thoughtless.

Talking to the old friend I mentioned has actually made things clearer because if I was genuinely happy in my marriage I wouldn't feel the need to. I know I have to stop it though but it's the only bright spot in what seems like a very dull life - I know I am a walking bloody cliche though.

AyeAmarok Mon 06-Mar-17 22:45:35

Yes, you are a walking cliche. You're following the affair script perfectly.

Stop trying to kid yourself that you're staying for your DD. You're staying because it's comfortable and it enables you to have your cake and eat it.

DioneTheDiabolist Tue 07-Mar-17 01:16:29

Seriously OP, if you really want to be in a better place once your DD goes, forget this man and put your energy into your future. Invest your energy in yourself. Sometimes that can trigger a shift in relationships. If not, you're in a better position when you do split from your DH.

Jellybellyqueen Tue 07-Mar-17 02:12:46

Your DH isn't totally blameless? Well, you've said how good he is as a dad and a husband, so what has he done to drive you into the arms of another?
Unless it's just a case of Mid-life boredom, getting a bit of excitement flirting with someone else, yet still wanting the cosy house/money set up? Cause that's what it sounds like. So predictable and yes, you do sound like a total cliche.
How about trying a bit of honesty with dh instead of keeping him in the dark while you decide if you can have an affair without messing up your kid. biscuit

Joysmum Tue 07-Mar-17 02:50:59

I was another who was in the same position as your DD.

My parents weren't right for each other, it was no worse than that.

They stayed together for my sake.

They actually modeled to me what a relationship shouldn't be. I had low standards, never every split up with boyfriends who weren't right for me and kept trying to make one particular (abusive) relationship work because that's what you did, you stayed together.

Having been that child, I'd always advise to split, to set the example to children that ok isn't good enough, that a life partnership is something special to be cherished only with someone who cherishes you.

blueshoes Tue 07-Mar-17 03:08:34

I will always be the one to go against the grain of these threads.

My parents were and are still incompatible. They stuck it out for the children (i.e. me and my siblings) for which I am eternally grateful. Me and my siblings knew they were unhappy but there was no atmosphere in the house because my father spent a lot of time out of it. I thank my parents everyday they did not split and provided a stable home.

Just because a parents' marriage is not ideal is not necessarily harmful to the children if there is no toxic atmosphere in the house. My parents did not model the best relationship but they also provided me with a negative example and a healthy scepticism and determination to avoid my parents' marriage. My siblings and I are married (by and large happily) to our first and only spouses.

OP, it is not the PC thing to say but I believe in your circumstances that your dd's interests are best served if you do not leave your dh (at least until she leaves home).

I am not impressed when you say you are living a lie. This so-called lie was triggered by your wanting to shag this 'old friend'. That's just sad. If you had to choose between your dd's unhappiness and scratching an itch, I'd judge you if you put your dd's family unit at risk for the latter. It is just an itch because I bet you you will tire of this man soon enough and he will of you too.

nooka Tue 07-Mar-17 03:11:42

Better a planned split with some chance of amicability being preserved between your parents than an implosion after an affair is discovered. OP can you really guarantee that you will be able to hold things together for another four plus years (and splitting when your child is at university can be equally destructive)? You are already disengaging and open to temptation. I can't imagine that your unhappiness isn't already impacting your dh and dd, and it's likely to get worse rather than better.

whattodowiththepoo Tue 07-Mar-17 05:33:15

Are you
A) a cheat
B) brave enough to take control of your life and take responsibility for your happiness?

FrenchLavender Tue 07-Mar-17 06:30:44

These threads are always exactly the same. A big list of "reasons" why you're not happy in your marriage even though you have been trucking along for a decade or more. But all of a sudden it just doesn't feel enough, it's been dead a long time really, not been any excitement for years... And then the inevitable "Oh, and I've met someone else". hmm

Stop giving yourself excuses to pursue or have an affair.

Exactly this. ^

I once read/heard that when people are asked to give their reasons for doing something major (leaving a job, moving house, and therefore I assume it also applies to leaving a marriage ) the first reason they give is the one they want people to think is the main issue. The one that sounds most acceptable to their audience. The second reason, the one that goes 'Oh and also.....' is the main issue and the real reason.

Your main issue would appear to be that you have got your knickers in a lather at the thought of shagging someone new and you are looking for ways to justify it. You've convinced yourself you deserve it and you are building a narrative to support that. There is no cliche more pathetic to behold than someone in the grip of a midlife crisis chasing some seedy excitement because they think they deserve it.

I know I should just call it quits with DH but I am determined not to put my own happiness above that of my DD. But I'm not sure, having committed to that, how to put it into practice sad.

Well how about you stop flirting with old flames on the internet, for a start. That will pretty much solve the immediate problem, won't it?

SavoyCabbage Tue 07-Mar-17 06:42:17

Aye is right, you are staying with your husband because it's the easiest thing to do and you are doing and saying exactly what people what people do and say when they have an affair.

There is nothing to say that your divorce will be as traumatic as your parents divorce. If you and your husband are in such good terms but marriage is over then it could be quite amicable. Although not if you have an affair!

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