Re: Wife moving back in after 3+ year separation
Feminist: Yes she can be physical with her family, in that her mom will seek her out for a hug before she leaves, and she loves hugging her nieces and our daughter, etc. But I can see how this would be totally different, in that they have never hurt or betrayed her before, and there is absolutely ZERO sexual "threat" involved.
Where as with me, not only have I personally hurt/betrayed her in the past, but I am also another man with whom she entrusted her heart that betrayed her. And while I have assured her that I understand that anything sexual is 100% off the table and I have thus far kept my promise, she understands that there is always a sexual element involved when it involves a man who is sexually attracted to her. I'm sure every woman has experienced scenarios where they find themselves induced into a hug with someone who they do not want to send any wrong messages to. Maybe it's an ex-boyfriend/husband, a creepy uncle, whoever, so they are hesitant in the hug and anxious for it to be over quick. She doesn't have to deal with or experience any of that with her family, so I don't think it's relevant.
I'm also pretty sure she is aware now of the situation. Just to be sure, yesterday afternoon is when she and I had a pretty long talk where I tried again to stress just how important to me it is, and specifically to clarify that I am only particularly referring to non-sexual touches at this time. I explained that a lot of the kinds of touching I am referring to could totally seem silly to a lot of people, that such things aren't important to most people anyway, and certainly not AS important to someone who is in a normal healthy sexual relationship. But given our situation, and lack of a sexual connection, it is that much more important to me. I asked her to just please understand that physical touch is extremely necessary in order for me to feel love and (more importantly) respect, especially when there is zero sexual activity. I explained that it is very very hard for me to stay motivated and happy without it, and asked her to think of the things that I do that make her feel loved and understand that physical touch is every bit as important to me as those things are to her.
That extended conversation took place yesterday, and she seemed to accept it and said she would try to more actively look for opportunities for touching of some kind. She just asked me to be patient with her, which I can understand. We'll see what happens.
Workingonme: Certainly it has occurred to me in the past that she could just be using me to get herself through the last semester of school and then plan to move on shortly after graduation. However, I believe firmly that this isn't the case. She was doing just fine by herself for one. She got rid of her apartment and dumped most of the furniture she had acquired in the three years we were apart. She has emptied her savings account on things for our home that she couldn't exactly take with her (repainting rooms, replacing living room floor and trim, etc.) and because she figured she doesn't need it anymore. She has put a tremendous amount of effort into our home, and has been very public to all of our friends and family about our reconciling. I just can't see why she would need to use me, go through all that effort, go through the public embarrassment of another break-up, etc. if she just wants to use me.
Admittedly, if she had wanted to come home and reconcile shortly after she had left back in 2010, I might have been more concerned. Back then her "act" was a mess, she was struggling, had very little family and friend support, etc. It would have made sense for her to use me to achieve her goals then. Now however, she has really sacrificed to come back home and has made it very difficult to leave and start over again if she were to reach that point. So no, I don't think she is using me.
BrockLanders: I actually sort of tried something like that over the weekend. Got the idea from a book to just try to pick a good time and go in for a real, deep kiss while pulling her close. Again I didn't want to make it sexual, as that would probably scare her at this point given her past. The idea indicated that if she turns her head, to go ahead and try to turn it back for the kiss to test whether she is really truly adamantly against it, or is just playing hard to get and wants you to push her boundaries a tiny bit.
It didn't end in disaster, but she firmly turned her head and sort of pushed away. I laughed it off and we both walked away, but it was very disappointing. Yesterday during our talk, she brought up that attempt as being very offensive and pushy to her. I apologized for it, noting that I wasn't trying to make her feel that way, but also explained why I had done so and she seemed to be understanding of it. Maybe it is something I will try again someday as I know there is merit to the concept, but just not for a while. Also, I can't really just pursue her organically like any other woman, because unlike any other woman, she and I have lots of negative history between us.
Iver: Yep, it's a great environment for our daughter. We're both good parents I think. And yes, I definitely agree that it does appear that it could be a long time before she is able to be a "real wife" to me. At the same time, it's not like I don't share in the responsibility for that being the case. I do love her, I do believe that she intends to be a "real wife" someday, I just have to have a bit of faith that it will actually happen.
We do own the home (both of us, together). I don't know if things would change any regarding her filing for divorce after she graduates nursing school vs... well you didn't suggest an alternative. The reality is that she is back home now, fully integrated, and I can't really go back to the way it was before. I do know that the way things were lined up back in early 2011 when the final divorce hearing was days away, I was set up to get the house (in fact she would have to pay me half of the difference between what the home was then worth and what our loan was, adding up to about $5,000), keep my retirement accounts, split our outstanding debts equally and I would get 100% residential custody and 50% legal custody. About as good of a divorce as a Father can get in the midwest. But that is the past, I took the risk of dropping it and I don't have any regrets. Now I think if it were to go to divorce, everything would be more or less equal or maybe slightly in favor of her for being a woman.
Last edited by cdbaker; 09-10-2013 at 05:35 PM.