But you have your money and finances in better order, your wife who too earns six figures will still live a very comfortable life (+alimony) and your daughter is at the age where hopefully she will much better understand and deal with it. She will still have her horseback riding, private schools, Europe trips and University taken care of...... Excuse me while I shed a tear.
TAM is not the place to come and self-flaggelate oneself with stories of why or rationalize. You have shouldered the responsibility and frankly put up with a terrible plight because as you said in the end you really were only worried about the money. You talked and begged your wife for a remedy and she just didn't care as long as she had the cars, home, vacation properties, country club vacations and most important.... the air of a perfect marriage.....
The more I read the more I doubt it was your daughter you were so worried about. You would probably be a better father 2-3X/wk in all honesty, especially as it would be an amicable divorce with you taking the high road. You have as per your own words a lifestyle that not the 99%, but 99.5% would envy and dream of, but 2008 (economy in the tank) was not the time to bale and you stuck it out. Your wife didn't care about your needs at all (and yes what a cruel nasty b**ch she was), and only cared about the money, what it bought in terms of a lifestyle and appearances.
I wish you the best, you made your choice and paid a heavy emotional price for 5 years, but financially all is well......
I do not condone cheating. I am a man who's neither cheated, nor ever wanted to. It is an ugly, destructive, cowardly road to travel.
But I can not stand in judgement. There is no point. Your remorse is apparent, at least as much as can be with just one side of the story, and via the written word. You are also well aware that your greatest error was to not leave this "marriage" years ago, before ever embarking on an affair. I suspect that your guilt over that crucial error still burns brightly.
But I do sympathize. What you are describing is not a marriage. Going only by what you tell us, your wife took exit of the marriage a long time ago. It is NOT alright to withhold sex and affection from your partner indefinitely, and expect them to suffer endlessly for your unilateral, and frankly incredibly selfish, decision. It is NOT OK to rebuff attempts to correct this problem, instead choosing to settle into what is essentially just a roommate situation. Marriage is more than sharing a roof together, more than a few years under your belt, more than mere memories. It is something that must remain vital, active, and present. It is a union that both parties should continue to desire to be apart of, day after day. Your wife's lack of reaction speaks to this. That random, anonymous people on a website, even those who are clearly projecting, are more outraged over your infidelity than your spouse seems to be speaks volumes of just how far gone your marriage was.
It sounds, again based solely off your recollections, that your marriage was done long before you took up with another woman. And you are not alone in the blame of ending it far too late. Your wife should have had the decency likewise to put an end to this horrible situation. Why so many feel the blame of ending this hollow marriage rested totally on your shoulders is beyond me. You both engaged in cowardice.
So it is ending. And good for you both. No longer do either one of you have to work yourselves into a frenzy trying to uphold a lie. Divorce is always a tragedy. But marriages die often long before that tragedy unfolds. I hope the two of you, and your child, find peace and joy beyond the heartbreak.
Good words written by jaquen. I believe a marriage without love and affection is empty and it is just a waiting game to see when it will be over. My previous partner, the father of my kids, I stopped loving him for most of the last 6 years of our 11 year relationship. I told him many times why, I told him many times I was unhappy, which progressed to deeply unhappy, but he never changed. Did nothing different. I felt I was a single person in a 'marriage'. It was a lonely place. I didn't have 2 children, he was my 3rd child. There was zero support from him as a partner, a lover, a father. I was on my own. I even told him how unhappy I was and that I felt that I was on the verge of having an affair. I was worried and did not want to do this. We had both said to each other that we would never do this to the other. This did not change his actions either. And so I stopped fancying him, loving him. I was happy to never have sex again for the rest of my life. Actually, I just didn't want sex with him. We had children, my family was important to me, and I had accepted my lot in life. I was going to be unhappy for evermore. And for some time I thought, and I may have even said it, that if he found sex elsewhere then that would be fine with me.
Therefore, your wife, did not want sex with you, had no desire for you, was not total heartbreak and devastation after discovery, and she 'understood', and so this marriage became just a friendship a long time ago. Yes, you should not have cheated, but I agree with what you write, and the black and white is just wrong. Things are NEVER just black and white. Always circumstances and reasons. Being in a partnership where one is unloved, where love is not reciprocated, staying together for the children, I believe it is only a matter of time before a conclusion is met or another lover is found. We all want to be loved, and when love is witheld, and all efforts rebuffed, the only thing left is to start to find someone that will love you as you wish to be loved (affair not condoned, but if the staying together for the children is as important to both (and it is to most people), affair can be understood). If there was no children involved, would you have gone your separate ways before you cheated? I would hope so.
I was lucky, my ex, father of my children, did something which I found unforgiveable, considering our situation, and that gave me my way out that I never thought I would get. I never cheated on him, I left with my head held high. He treated me like dirt as a result, and when I found someone who loved me and who I loved, 2 years later, he then treated me worse, as if I was cheatig on him and as if my bf took his wife! And now I am here. My bf cheated on me. I love sex with him, he awakened all within me that I thought had died while I was with my ex. My bf has given me so much heartache, and I have been utterly devastated. I thought he was my soulmate. I could imagine, with total happiness, being with him for the rest of my life. But alas, I do not know if this would be the case. Could I ever give him license to go and get sex elsewhere like I did with my ex? No way!! I adore this man, fancy him, love him deeply. But...I don't think it is to be. I don't think he is the man I hope him to be or that he hopes he can be. He loves me deeply (if he knows what loving deeply is. For him, it is deeply) but he is screwed up and I am not here to mend him. And so, 'cheating' in my previous relationship would have been just about acceptable to me. Cheating in my current relationship, absolute and total and utter devastation. I have never felt so hurt, so damaged, so upset, so out of control of a situation. Though now I am coming to terms with all, speaking on here has helped me organise my thoughts and stand up to his flannel, and my god, he has come out with some amazing flannel. And I am ready to do whatever it takes to find the absolute truth or just end it. I have a feeling the latter will be the case. Good luck to you in your divorce and your family life.
I am getting divorced because I don't want to live this way. I don't want to be married to someone solely for peripheral benefits when the core of the marriage is flawed.
Personally, I think you're making the right choice. Many men and women have sought extra marital affairs because of sexual incompatibility. Don't let anybody fool you. Its not right, but it routinely happens.
If you're lucky, you'll find someone you're compatible with. Life is short. The last thing you want to do is spend it married to an iceberg. I could never recommend to my son or daughter that they stay with a spouse who willfully turns from a sexual partner to a asexual room mate (just for the sake of staying married).
Thanks for all of the replies. We've been discussing divorce. I worry so much about my child it just isn't easy. I know I can't hold on for 4 more years until the graduates, I also know this will be disruptive....at best. I guess the best I can do is move out after the school year ends to minimize any impact to school studies.