Wife has a boyfriend but can't see the problem
This is going to be a pretty random brain dump but here goes.
My wife has always told me she was very happy in our 20 year old relationship although like all marriages, it has had its ups and downs. We'd got to a point where we figured we could weather anything now.
We have a ten year old son (hard work as he has ADHD), a house we all like and led a contented if not exciting life. Our one problem was that we never had much options in the way of baby sitting so we never went out on our own for the first 8 years or so of his life and barely went out individually.
A year or so ago she told me she loved me but wasn't in love with me and that she no longer found me sexually attractive. Around the same time she said she had met someone online and wanted to start a relationship with them. I was devastated. She then got extremely angry with me saying I was in no position to complain as our wedding vows had nothing about 'forsaking all others' (we'd left that bit out as we both felt that if either made a mistake e.g. getting drunk at an office party and getting carried away, it wasn't neccessarily a show stopper for us). I took that as an acceptence a one night stand might happen, she apparantly has spent the last 15 years thinking it meant we had an open relationship. She was angry that to her, she'd long since 'released me' to have other partners even though I had no interest in such a thing.
In the next few weeks I lost a ton of weight, work suffered and I generally went to pieces. Eventually she finished the relationship as it was impacting me so badly. However, within days she started up with someone else who 'helped her through the pain and loss of the first one'. She's still with him now and the other guy has now left his wife and moved into a flat near us. To be fair, his marriage was already on the rocks so that would have happened anyway I suspect.
For the first few months, my wife acted frankly nuts, telling me I was being unreasonable, saying you only have one life so why shouldn't she enjoy it etc. In many ways a classic mid life crisis as she was just coming up on 40. I have ended up living on various pills to cope with the stress and physical impact of it all and am seeing a therapist to keep me sane. My wife then said she didn't want to ever have sex with me again as it felt like she was being unfaithful to her lover(!) although she gets angry at me saying we should thus sleep in different beds. It tears me apart as she quite happily gets undressed in front of me, asks me to wash her back in the bath etc, really rubbing in what I've lost.
She sees her boyfriend on average 1-2 evenings (until 2am) and a whole day each weekend. Recently as he was moving in, she was at his place for days at a time. She also goes to various festivals/shows for long weekends (they share an obsession with a particular vehicle). When she is at home, she alternates between being quite nice or really difficult and angry at me over trivia. She now says she came to feel there was something missing in her life even though on paper it's perfect and she's been trying to fill the void. She says she hopes she gets over it and we return to where we were.
Right now, our garage is full of her boyfriends stuff (his flat isn't big enough for it all), his washing is hanging on our line and she's up late most nights working on his divorce papers etc as he's so inept at managing his own affairs.
On the basis of the above, pretty much everyone I know says she's taking huge advantage of me, using me and I'm an idiot to put up with it and I should divorce her. Difficult to disagree on paper.
Trouble is, I don't want to be the one to break up the home. I'm nearly fifty so could never buy anywhere else, starting from scratch so would be renting for the rest of my life. I don't want to ruin my son's life. (He knows all about what's going on though already). Worse still, despite all the pain, hurt and selfish behaviour, I am still deeply in love with her, probably the point of being taken advantage of. If she stopped it all tomorrow, I would and could forgive her.
However, that said, I now barely recognise the person I married. How can she knowingly hurt me so much whilst saying she loves me? I can't live with the uncertainty but she thinks it's all fine with lines like 'I'm here most of the time, what are you worrying about?'. She's also complaining about my lack of DIY around the house. I earn enough to pay others to do that but in practice, every time I get some money, she has something happen to swallow it all - a £1500 car repair or something. She just seems so narcisistic and full of self entitlement which was never there before.
She says she doesn't understand why she feels like this, just that she does and she wishes she didn't. She did start therapy for a while with me but stopped as she didn't want me telling people things she'd said in the sessions. That's another thing that's hard, she gets angry (that word again) if I talk to friends or family about our situation but frankly, some days I'm almost suicidal so need to vent a bit.
Hope she comes to her senses or throw in the towel? If it wasn't for our son, I'd be gone, I know that much. This is an abusive relationship in my view and she's being selfish and uncaring yet my love for her is so strong, I find the idea of finishing it too horrible to contemplate in case she gets over this madness.
On the plus points, she always asks to hold my hand when we are walking, complains if I don't cuddle her in bed and makes long term plans 1-2 years in the future involving me. I just can't get my head around it all.
Last edited by ccd; 04-01-2012 at 02:42 PM.