My wife of 31yrs wants to be free. We are great friends and had a great marriage which she agrees with but now wants to live alone. She still wants me in her life, its like having your cake and eating it. She wants to give me no chance at all of coming back but I am a very flexible person and always have been so she could come back on her terms, as she could still be free. Its difficult to cope with as there was nothing wrong. Perhaps she wants to re-live her youth or maybe is not telling the full story. Any thoughts.....
Hi OP - I'm really sorry about your situation.
Has there been no signs she was unhappy ? Surely ? Clearly when you say there was nothing wrong ... she feels there was.
Rather than look at her and resent what she is demanding ... what is it that you want if you have to split ? Don't get sucked in to recrimination. It's easy and natural but it really achieves nothing.
I know I'm not commenting on her desire to split, that's because you haven't told us much ... and it sounds like she has her mind made up.
How will the split come out financially ? Will there be enough for two places to live ? Are you working ?
What an awful situation to find yourself in.
As hard as it is to accept, you must surely see that your wife clearly doesn't believe "nothing is wrong" or she wouldn't wish the marriage to end. As she has the right to end the marriage and be single again, that may be something you just have to accept, regardless of how flexible you consider yourself.
It's hard to comment or give thoughts on your particular situation on so few details - if it's a bolt out of the blue then you may just need to give yourself some time to absorb the news. Really, though, only she can give you her reasons for wanting out/whether this has been brewing a while/why things can't carry on as is/why she doesn't want to come back even on her terms. You can certainly ask for counselling if that's what you want, I'd certainly recommend counselling for yourself if she is resolute and you are having difficulties absorbing or dealing with that.
There are some links/numbers you might find helpful HERE
All the very best, OP.
Some background information on this. We have a business and we both work together in it. This can be a bit awkard but after 2 months its ok at prersent. We had a property abroad and she spent a good bit of time there on her own as she likes her own company.This gave her a different insight into a different life, but its not that practical when you are trying to run a business as well. She does not want a divorce or separation, she wants everything to be as is except that she does not want to be married. She did say to be on many occassions that we had a great life and got on so well, so one would take that at face value and thats the way it was. Indeed very few of our friends can understand what happened.It still looks like that we can be great friends and will continue to work together but its I that have to agree to this as I was forced into this situation and yet I enjoy her company and she enjoys mine. She told me that I did nothing wrong and I was a great husband and that it was her that caused all the problems. So its all a bit confusing.Thanks for your ideas and help.
It's sad to read your story info.
I presume she has just fallen out of love with you and wants to be single and explore what that it like.
Perhaps ye neglected each other and your relationship.
That's having your cake and eating it in my opinion.
What do YOU want?
I know you prefer that this hasn't happened, but as it has, have you thought about yourself at all?
I understand as you get older and comfortable in your ways, it is difficult to head out in a totally different direction.
Once you try though, you might find it fun.
Put your wife aside for now and look to doing stuff that might interest you.
Perhaps join a club or two. IE, golf for example.
I'm going to guess that you might be in your 50's or so, so far from over the hill yet and you could look at this as an opportunity to try out new things.
I wish you the best and hope that you can find happiness in the future.
OP - can I echo one of Beruthiel's points - "what do you want?"
If she no longer wants to be with you then to me that means everything - separation / divorce the whole hog.
Assuming you have tried counselling I think you really should look into making the break a full one, allowing her to have the space she needs - but allowing you to start to put your life back together.
Even if you have not had counselling I strongly recommend you talk to a solicitor - even more so because you share a business. Do try to keep things civil - but don't be a walk over either. If she doesn't want to be with you then give her what she wants and set yourself free. I know it is scary, especially having spent so much of your lives together but all you can do is your best and if that fails then move on and work on making yourself happy, as trite as it sounds you really do only have one life...
Has your wife always been the decision maker in your family? She sounds like someone who is used to calling all the shots and always getting her own way. She has completely torn your world apart and even after the separation is dictating to you that you will not get a divorce or a legal separation. If you run a business together how feasible is it that she can go abroad for 2 months and still run the company. has she left all the work to you? If she wants a separation you need to accept that, but you dont need to bend over backwards to make life easy for her. She needs to accept that there are consequences to a separation and that she cant just remove you from her home and bed and continue having a relationship with you as before.
You need to move on with your life and start creating one with which you will be happy.
Sorry to hear about your situation OP. I'm not saying you should go through with a divorce or whatever, but while you probably need to accept that the marriage may be over, so does she. As you have said yourself, she seems to want to have her cake and eat it with regards the separation. I don't really think this is an option so if you do end up sticking with the separation and the marriage isn't fixable, then she needs to be aware that it's going to be a divorce. I'm not quite sure why she is insisting on you two remaining married when she doesn't want to be married to you. Part of me thinks there's some sort of financial reasons behind why she doesn't want a divorce and/or she wants to keep you as a backup in-case her new single life doesn't work out. Perhaps I'm being harsh saying that, but if you go as far as saying you don't want to be married to someone any more, I don't get why you'd insist on there not being a formal separation and divorce.
I'd agree with what others have said, keep things civil but stand up for yourself and don't let her clean you out and walk all over you.
Thanks for your interest and information. Its nearly 2 months since I have been on so I am updating you on how everything has progressed since. Yes there are financial reasons why we are not going for a full split. Also I have had councelling to try and cope with my situation. As I said in my previous Threads we were the best of friends, and we still are. When we meet and go out we get on as normal as long as I dont start going back over why this happened.She says she is afraid that the meetings might not be helping me as I still am in love with her,but I cannot do anything about my feelings. But this is not preventing me from having my own life but she aslo enjoys my company and has never said anything bad about me to anyone.Its a strange breakup and after 30yrs there are hughe ties between us. I think she is curious to see what it would be like to be with other people but perhaps we all share that curiousity but not everyone carrys it through.There have been rows but she says anger and bitterness will get you no where, None of us can do anything about what happened yesterday or last week we can only look forward.
It's never easy when a longterm relationship breaks up-especially when the friendship remains-in fact,sometimes this makes it harder for both parties to move forward.
One day at a time, life is short,I hope you find happiness.
Tell her to feck off, live on her own if she likes but you aren't going to be a part of it. She is either married to you or else you want nothing to do with her. She's taking you for a fool and you don't have to tolerate this b*llsh*t.
Hi OP. Well this is really the best kind of split - if there HAS to be a split. What more could one ask for.
Clearly there was something missing for her in your relationship for a long time. Otherwise she wouldn't bother looking for a split. That is upsetting for you, if you didn't know about it. But life is complicated and it's totally impossible to know fully why she made the choice to act now. Friends may have prompted her and she may have felt that there was a 'big romance' left in her life to be lived. Who the heck knows
I think you are doing the right thing IF it is as you say. It is a nonsense for anyone to expect that you could turn your affection and love off, like a switch, especially as you don't seem to resent her actions to such an extent to do so.
You say it is not interfering with you getting on with life ... well ... if that's the case then keep going as you are. BUT ... OP ... please don't adopt a strategy of putting your life on hold in the hope an expectation that she will have an epiphany in a few years and take you back. While that is statistically possible, that would be a major MUGS game ... so please don't do it.
I am 50+ and divorced not so long ago. I assume you cannot be that far from me in age. We have a LOT to live for still and getting on with your life means being able to put your love for her in one pocket, while you start to open your heart to meeting another lady soon. Can you manage that ? Maybe not this week ... but this year anyway. You must start to think like that.
I'm confused. She states that she does not want to be married but doesn't want to be legally separated or divorced??? Surely divorced is the only way to end a marriage! If she means she doesn't want to live as husband and wife how does she see your relationship working out? Does she want to be friends and business partners or does she want to live like boyfriend/girlfriend who don't live together? Also, does she want an open relationship (assuming she still wants a romantic/sexual relationship with you). You really need to be very clear about what she wants and expects.
As you say in your initial post, she wants to have her cake and eat it.....she wants to still have your steady supportive relationship AND the freedom to do what she wants. If I were you Id be not having a friendship with her, let her miss you, and worry about you moving on and leaving her behind.....make her realise what she is leaving behind.
Replying to some points made, Yes when you are good friends moving on is difficult. I am trying to get the balance right
As for what was missing in the marriage, she said she loved me but was not in love with me, she did not want to be married & did not want a relationship.I thought by her not discussing it with me she showed no respect at all for me.But I am parking my love for her as best I can. I need 2 options one if she comes back at some stage and one if she never comes back.But I will never trust a woman again.Yes she wants to be friends & we have no option on the business partner part. An open relationship would suit me fine but she ruled it out completely. She can be totally inflexible on many issues.Yes I did tell her to feck off to the other side of the world and never come back, but I dont know how I would handle that. She acts the hard sometimes which she never was during our marriage. I am not allowed to show any affection to her at all now when we go out,even though its only 4 months.Its breaking the rule book. So I am still trying to resolve things but by god its hard. I would prefer to have never loved her & also been a good boy did not pay off for me so I am beginning to think is it time for me to go against my gut feeling and start playing hard ball.