| | Advice wanted
Hi all. Newbie here looking for all comments (positive & negative) and advice. I have been in a relationship with my SO for 18 years. We started in our late teens, eventually moved in together and got married and have 2 children, 2 years and under. We were each others first. We played with another couple on 4 occasions. Other than this, no other indiscretions or outside partners. Our marriage is on the verge of total failure due to lies i've told and worsening behaviour patterns. I was always totally honest with my wife. She was my 100% focus for the first 3-4 yrs of our relationship. As I got older, i wanted to get out and live it up. It caused problems but i brushed them off. I remained honest but over the next 14 years, i told a number of lies. I lied about recreational drug use. I lied about a strip poker game with friends and people i did not know. I lied and hid the fact i started smoking again. I made purchases without consulting her first. Also, during both of her pregnancies, i became a complete jerk. I believe this was due to my reluctance to have children, which i never properly addressed with her. Now, everything is out in the open and it has shattered her trust and belief in me. We are trying to make it work, but it has been very difficult. The problems have been created by me. Somewhere i stopped trying to be a good husband and friend and started treating her as less than an equal. I didn't tell her things because i didn't want the drama or have the energy to discuss her opinion. This is not the way i want to feel about the woman i love. I am not trying to fix this for the kids, I want her ( of course, the kids are paramount as well but not a reason to stay together) I have to rebuild our relationship and regain her trust. At the same time, i feel i need to change but am unsure how to REALLY accomplish this without lying to myself. I also do not want to simply pay lip service only to end up feeling resentful in 2 years trying to be someone i'm not. I love my wife and want to spend the rest of my life with her-happily. Communication has been better lately and i am trying to be more open. The one thing i'm struggling with is feeling like i can't ever be mad or have a bad day in front of her. She says we are starting over and i should act like it. I find it hard to forget 18 years, and change the way i act towards her. If anyone has been through anything similar, i'd like to hear comments (both perspectives welcome). Thanks.