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Want to leave but held back by guilt (long)

12 replies

SausageSmuggler · 02/01/2019 16:01

I’ve been with H for 16 years, married for 10 and we have 3 DCs under 10.

I realised in the summer that I’m not happy in our relationship and haven’t been for a long time. I’m now at a point where I want to separate but I keep putting off the conversation because I feel so guilty.

H is a really good guy on the whole and a brilliant dad but I feel like we’re more roommates than spouses. We were friends before we started going out and I think we’ve just come full circle.

The biggest issue we have is there is very little communication between us. He’s never talked to me when he’s had a problem and over the years it’s stopped me talking about my issues. We’re also in a sexless marriage which doesn’t bother him but I can’t stand it. Friends (most of whom have similar aged children etc) are shocked when I say that we don’t have sex. I’m only in my early 30’s - I don’t want to resign myself to celibacy. I’ve tried to improve these areas and talk but changes never last long.

What makes me feel so guilty is that, as I say, he is a really good guy and I don’t want to hurt him. There’s no resentment and it’s not a ‘bad’ marriage, I’m just not in love with him anymore. I keep asking myself if that’s enough to walk away. I’m worried about the impact on DCs and the financial implications, neither of us earn enough to stay in our property. My head is a mess. I don’t know what to do for the best. Sad

OP posts:
villageshop · 02/01/2019 21:14

Do it now, before the years go by and you find yourself in your sixties wishing you'd left now. You have time to build a new life. It won't be easy, but it will never become any easier if you leave it until some distant, more appropriate time (there isn't one) but it will be worth it.

Pockybot · 02/01/2019 22:59

Could you try really good top notch couples counselling
Emotion focused therapy is meant to be good

catherine2019 · 02/01/2019 23:32

Hi @SausageSmuggler
I hear ya loud and clear!!! I have been wanting to leave my husband for a few years now but just can't seem to grow a set and see it through! Mainly for guilt also. We have been together 12 years, married for 7 and have 4 & 5 years olds. He's a great Dad to our kids but when it comes to our relationship it's like we are housemates.
Sex is also no go area as he doesn't seem to need it. We have talked about it and he says we will make more time for us and do more together as date nights are also non existent - I have no desire to spend time with him tbh as I think we have completely drifted apart over the years and not sure I am actually attracted to him. I have been open and honest about all this with him as I presumed he felt same way but what was worse is he seemed oblivious to our lack of connection 😳
We agreed to make more of an effort with everything but that fizzled out quickly.
He suffers anxiety and can have a short temper which is exhausting to be around as he is constantly negative about every damn thing and just makes me miserable and find I am just existing day by day and I don't want my kids growing up watching me live a sad existence. Problem is - if we split up, him not seeing kids everyday would absolutely crucify him as he is so involved with them. It would really kill him not to have them in his life for the daily stuff 🙈
Also I am not sure he would ever move on (relationship wise) as he is not exactly a go getter as he badly lacks confidence.
Sometimes I wish he would have an affair or perhaps if he was a shit dad this would make my decision easier!
So I hear your confused plight as I have been stuck with confused state in my head for some time 😔🥴

Chickenedout · 03/01/2019 05:11

I was where you are at exactly a year ago, and yes I still feel guilty now, but I'm a so much more relaxed and happier and the children have been absolutely fine. Stbexdh however has taken it very hard which makes me feel awful, but he does have a supportive family. And like you we were room mates , he was in his room, me in mine , it was horrendous, it was his choice to have his own room so imo he decided it was over so to speak . But honestly listen when people say life is too short cause it sure as hell is way way too short to be unhappy and unfullfilled. Good luck

Nighowl · 03/01/2019 14:53

I’m at the same point been going riundvin circles for two years not slept in some room since April. I can’t ever imagine being intimate with him again and see him as a friend. Been together 17 years, two kids 7 and 10 I work part time but will never get a mortgage on my salary. We keep trying to make it work and failing. He’s a good dad and we did have a amazing marriage at one point but we’ve both changed. I still love him but not in love. I think he still wants to keep trying but we are both too scared to call it a day. It’s so sad. If one of us had been unfaithful it would be clear cut but this just feels like we are giving up. There’s sonmych resentment and so much has been said in the heat of the moment I can’t see us moving forward but trying to explain it to someone else sounds a bit lame. I’m also suffering with a chronic illness and in so much pain and fighting to get treatment ... all in all a shit time.... need to grow a pair and do what’s right for me... but too scared

ReaganSomerset · 03/01/2019 15:00

I think have an honest discussion with him about the issues, maybe do some counselling. Then you'll know you tried everything and hopefully will feel less guilty. If still also mean that if you end it, he won't be totally blindsided.

Nighowl · 03/01/2019 16:32

Sorry no advice but you’re not alone xx

themuminator · 04/01/2019 13:25

What villageshop said. You will know if it is right or not. If it feels wrong, then it is.

You deserve love.

I spent years waiting, feeling guilty. Over a decade in fact.

However, if you feel you can fall in love with him again, then counselling, and being completely honest with each other could help.

cantbeatfreshsheets · 26/01/2019 21:21

Another one here in same boat. You're all definitely not alone. I sympathise. Going around in circles Is the hardest part. I'm ok during week when I have routine but dread weekends. We are in separate rooms. Just since Xmas however I've know for maybe 3 years things are not right. I want my DS to get the best version of me/him but right now that's not happening. He's getting the worst version of us both despite us trying to hide it. I've told my DH I'm going to leave. We are expecting our 2nd child soon. Yes I know. It's as horrendous as it sounds. I feel so trapped. He's an excellent father but not for me. I don't know where to start & know it's going to get worse before it gets better. I'm not sure how we move forward. I wish he would piss off & move out but he pays for everything so how can I expect him to do that? Need words of encouragement Hmm

Stilllearning01 · 26/01/2019 22:06

When i told my dad about my situation (exactly like yours!) he said: "if you're retired, empty nest,...will you want to spend the last 20 years of your life with that person? or would you want to leave? Do everything without him? if you think you'd leave, leave now! Don't waste a life"
Another thing i'll never forget is another old post here (it was like 2010 or something i found via google) where the poster said: "what's worse for kids? Growing up with separated, but happy parents, or turning 20 and realizing their whole childhood and idea of family was a lie?"
I then read "Conscious Uncoupling" and decided to go for it.
It's still scary, but we're going through the divorce now. the one thing you may have with a husband as you describe, is that you can make separation work together and maybe stay friends as he wants the best for the kids.

TheEndofIt · 27/01/2019 20:52

Getting to that point too; haven't been happy for years but dreading the guilt.

DP has just lost his job (through depression) & I'm worried that if we split up now, it will push him over the edge. Can't afford to stay in the house & want to relocate, so it's going to be messy. Dreading the upheaval.

But I just don't have the feelings for him & I think I'll be happier on my own.

MissedTheBoatAgain · 28/01/2019 00:49


Life is shorter than you think. Move on now while you have time. I spent years trying to save a marriage that upon reflection was doomed from the beginning. Ex could not adapt to living outside their home country and I worked away a lot from the family home.

I initiated the Divorce against Ex's wishes so they decided to make it a battle that lasted almost 2 years to resolve. Hope you can avoid that.

Good luck

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