what to do?
SO today is day one of my seperation arrangement with my lovely partner. We have been married almost 8 years, together for almost 15. We have three beautiful children aged 8, 6, and 3 who with my wife, are the light of my life.
My wife approached me saturday night and basically said she is not happy in our relationship and that she wants to seperate for an indefinite period of time. This is not the first time this situation has arisen....6 months ago the same thing happened and we had a trial seperation that lasted around 3 months, The thing is it wasnt really a seperation. I was still around all the time because of the kids and we never told them what was going on. We went to see a marriage councellor who i realize now was quite inept/inexperienced as we left with no advice or tools to improve our communication and relationship.
Part of what is soooo scary to me about this situation i that my wife displays every symptom of chronic depression except suicideal tendencies.....constant body/headaches, always tired, guilty about the quality of her mothering, no interest in sex..its like a chore for her, hard on her self about her abilities and appearance and not really motivated to do much of anything really. Ive been doing the majority of the day to day life stuff my self...she has days when she is herself which are awesome, but more often she shows flat affect and alot of impatience with me, the kids, her work, etc.
The first time we seperated 6 months ago she was unhappy with her life......torn between her duties at work, as a mother, a wife etc, and feeling like she had lost her individuality......this makes perfect sence to me as anyone who is married with kids knows that its hard to have that "you" space.
I myself have recently kicked a 20 year marijuana addiction that i came to realize was destroying our relationship and my own self esteem......i came to realize that it didnt fix the issues i had with myself or in my life and that i didnt need it anymore.....i was using all day everyday to cover up the hurt i felt in my life...since then ive taken up playing the bass guitar, spending so much more quality time with my children and worked on listening actively and attentively to my wife.
After the couple months of our first seperation, things were awesome! There was true intimacy, more sex than in years and a real sense of togetherness. The behaviour of or kids was improving......everything was roses from november to mid january.
Then she started to be low again.....headaches, in bed early, no engagement with the kids or me, no sex....all the depression symptoms again. I ve known this was coming so i wasnt shocked saturday night when she dropped this on me after the kids went to bed. She says shes not in love with me anymore, loves me for ever, but doesnt feel in love with me. She feels her life is not on the path she wants it to be and that our relationship is the cause of her horrible unhappiness. Shes said things to me in the recent past like "I dont feel like i have a purpose, something to look forward to at the end of the day" and when she tells me shes done with our relationship its done with no emotion except anger if i ask her whats so wrong with her life....how im mistreating her. Ive changed my outlook and approach to things so much since the first seperation....ive become super dad, super husband and i feel better about myself than ive ever felt before. He comments and low mood prompted me to research depression and it made me cry when i looked at the list of symptoms for dysthymia and its textbook,
I brought up her being depressed and showed her the symptoms and asked what she thought and she admitted the possibility but holds fast to the idea that its our relationship that makes her low. Im sure its part but how is our relationship supposed to work if shes depressed and im dong everything i can to support her and getting little support in return? Its a viscious cycle that just reinforce the depressive cycle. This isnt a major depression...she still goes out with her girlfriends and stuff but they just get drunk...another symptom of depression. She has agreed to talk to her councellor and doctor about depression....she does have a history of major depression so....
So hear i am.....alone and scared for my wife and childrens well being....i see my kids monday wednesday and friday night/saturday morning is what we agreed to. Im miserable because i know that i have to do this but im convinced that me not being around anymore isnt the silver bullet to her happiness that she thinks it is.......wednesday night we layed in bed together and snuggled close while watching a movie......saturday she is miserable and our relationship is the cause and i go live with my parents.
I love her more than anything and want my marriage to last for ever. Im so ****ing scared it makes me sick thinking about it. I dont want to call her or ask her how shes feeling for fear of driving her away, but its so hard for me not to express my love and concern for her. Seeing my kids after school for a few hours a week is horrible......telling them what was happening was the worst thing ive ever had to do just for the record.i feel like ive robbed them of the innocence all children should keep as long as possible too soon........too soon.
Advice? Help? going to talk to a counciller as soon as i can get an appointment...felt that my rant here might help in the mean time
thanks for reading and in advance for any advice