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Married 14.5 years, together 17. Bomb dropped in early March. Wife had been into running a LOT in the past year, just competed first marathon on her 40th birthday in November, and found a whole new group of friends. All except one were divorced or separated, but things between us seemed fine, if not better – she loved running, and meeting new people, and she seemed happy so I had no problems. In February her group of friends (all women) were joined by two men, of questionable marital status, but I was assured “they are harmless” - but I started to see strange behavior. She insisted on carpooling to track workouts with these guys and would miss my son’s track meets (he is 11, also have a D8) if it meant she could not carpool – I thought this was selfish, but again, was nothing more than annoyed. Then the bomb in early March – ILYBIANILWY speech – we don’t have passion, we are just friends, maybe we should be in a open marriage (from a woman that felt Hooters was the 4th level of hell) – I did all the wrong DB things – fought, argued wrote a love letter blah blah blah – but I thought there was no affair. Through March, lots of erratic party girl behavior. Out all night, inappropriate clothing …missing for several hours at a time etcc… I had read the Path Partners MLC guide and was willing to ride this out, but still thought MC was a good idea. Set up MC – she blew one off, then went to one session in mid April and declared she was not going back. I had set up “toll-gates” along the way – if she did not do MC, I would lawyer up, just so I knew my options.
A few days later she kept pestering me for a separation date. After getting hounded for several hours (she was drunk and followed me around the house) I relented and said, fine, we are separated. Still kept wearing my ring, still supported her financially in the marital home, so in our state of VA, it is really not considered a separation.
She went to second MC session (in both sessions the MC asked her if there was another man and she said “Not really, no” and when asked by me to qualify, she said “No”. I believed her. Silly me.)
That morning, before MC, I had noticed that there was a problem with our irrigation system (1-2 days previous the sanitation dept had plowed our lawn and dug up some sprinkler heads..don’t ask) and she said “Oh yeah, my friend will fix them” and alarm bells went off “What friend??” “OM” she replied. “How the hell does he know about it?” I asked “I told him, we just talk that’s all” “You didn’t tell me” “I thought you saw them” I knew something was up….
MC did as well, but my W would not say anything. The MC who was pro-marriage said she thought we could fix our relationship, but we needed to decide if we should come back. So I said make the appt, and my W and I spoke in the car and she said she did not know what she wanted to do. We went separate ways, she back home (a part time realtor and SAHM with too much time on her hands) me to work, and an hour later she texted me and said cancel the appt.
I called her, asked if the issue was with the MC and I could find a new one, and she said “I just want to see other people” and I flew off the handle. Called her dad,(I am very close to him) and told him to pick up his daughter, she wanted to see other people and she was not welcome in the house (not the most calm moment of my life) He said he would call her. And yes, I know this was a mistake. She and I went back and forth on the phone, had a huge blowout but landed on living in separate rooms, she could see her friends and we would just figure stuff out. At the end of the conversation she allowed “OM and I have become good good friends, and if he knew I was single he would ask me out..” “Do you want to go out with him?” She made a face and said, “no not really.” That night, another late night of talking and no sleeping (was seeing L for first time next morning) and I started looking at cell phone bill, and realized OM and W were texting each other about 100 times a day since Feb, and were talking on the phone a lot as well (keep in mind the cell phone had recently been password locked) So, I was thinking EA. Go to lawyer, run through the events of the past 2 months and before I even got to cell phone bill she says “She is having an affair!” At her direction, I hired a PI. And told my wife we were not seperated if we lived under the same roof and I was supporting her. We live in a fault state, and this had important legal and financial implications. That next weekend, she had a triathlon relay that he was also in, out of town, and I figured that if something would happen, it would be that weekend. Well, the PI caught them sharing a hotel room overnight, heard them ML, and reported back to me. I was devastated. My lawyer is telling me I can file anytime, and not pay spousal support, but if I wait a long time it will look like I tolerated it. He said 3-5 months was my window. My friends and my family that I have told – they are protective of me and want me to throw the book at her. But there are these two little people in the house that need to be protected from as much of the fallout as possible. She is my wife of 15 years, the mother of my kids and I still love her, even if this version of her is unloveable. So, I confronted her, and she said she would stop seeing him and we would work on the marriage. And then an hour later she was pissed at me for spying on her and we fought. Next day she left for her parents with the kids. We agreed to be separated and talk more when she got back. I checked the cell phone bills a few more times. No contact. she told me she was no longer talking to him. Also said he means nothing to her and she could take him or leave him (though admitted she could see herself falling for him during the confrontation talk the week previous.) But then I found she was using a new phone. And I discovered she was still going to his apartment. So, two weeks later, here we are – she is in an active PA, either thinks I don’t know or doesn’t care. Separate rooms. She sees him 4-5 nights a week (I work all day and then get the kids..but this is helping me when I ask for joint custody.) She was a great woman once. So, I am now stuck – a 180 or LRT is tough in the same house. She still makes me dinner, buys me clothes, asks for help in finding a job. I don’t bring up the relationship, don’t start conversations, but I sometimes will reply to a text with a joke. I try to be nice. The other night she said I made a comment about how she didnt have any money to move out(and I did so calmly and matter of factly) and that I made her feel worthless and having no value. I told her I was sorry she felt that way. So, some of this stuff is sinking in. I am GAL’ing- have lost 25, seeing an IC, doing a lot of stuff with the kids etc.. I really don’t know what to do. The cold financial and legal facts are: file soon and move on. The heart is saying: Wait it out. Screw the cold hard financial facts ( a 25k a year gamble most likely.)
Confused, I feel for you. She does seem awfully honest - to the point of flippancy. Could be a kind of MLC, though she does seem very honest about things so it may not last long. Has she ever been this 'spontaneous'?
Hello confused, welcome to the board. I think you'll find a lot of support here. It's a great place to be for such a lousy reason.
Have you read DR? If not, you should read it ASAP.
You're at the point now where you know what's going on with the OM. There's probably no benefit in checking the cell phone logs anymore. It'll only make you miserable at this point and it's not going to change anything.
What do you want at this point? Do you not want a D? Is it worth the financial gamble to wait it out for you?
LRT and 180s are still possible even if you're in the same house. In fact, your 180s may be more noticeable.
Post often with short posts. You're on moderation now so it will take awhile for your posts to show up.
jbnati, I don't know. I see how others have waited out years for their families, but I do not see me being able to do that. I am taking the kids to my family this weekend, and leaving behind a note telling her I know she went underground and she and I can't live together like that (and I am recommending a split custody arrangement where one of us stays here a week at a time.) If she agrees, that would be great. Or at least better. If she deflects, lies etc.. I will file. I see no other choice.
It's a simple decision do you want a divorce? Yes then file. No then hold tight. In 5 years if your M works out will it matter that your friends and family thought you were foolish right now. In 5 years if your M doesn't work out will you be happier knowing that you saved a bit of money or happier knowing you tried everything you could?
As a former WAW I can say things were going wrong long before the running club you just didn't know. She was probably unhappy which is why she got into running then the other divorced women gave her the validation that she too could separate. No they didn't encourage but if you're thinking of leaving even a little then you look for validation and ignore anyone giving you caution.
Decide what you want to do. Do you want to be married to her or not. Then you can make the next decision.
Detatching is going to be key. But decide if you want to make this work first
Hi there confused68. Sorry you find yourself here. But you're in good company.
I see so many similarities between your wife's actions and mine. My wife, too, made some changes in her life, got exposed to a new group of friends and then started mirroring their partying ways and engaging in reckless, selfish behaviour... seemed to lap up the attention she was getting from her new girlfirends and the men they hang out with... then said she wanted to end our marriage.
I thought it was MLC. Our MC thinks it's actually a personality disorder centered around an addiction to outside attention and affirmation. Regardless, it's horrible.
Like you, I love my wife... though not the behaviours she's engaging in right now. And I'm not willing to throw away over a dozen good years just because others think I shouldn't tolerate what's happening currently.
Ultimately it's your call whether you want a D or not. If not, give it some time. No matter what happens, at least you tried... and you (and your kids) will always know that.
In the meantime, don't support her behaviours. Don't bail her out financially. Don't enable her irresponsibility. If she's promised something to the kids, hold her to that and don't step in to bail her out. Let her fail in her kids' eyes...don't cover for her.
If your wife is like mine, she's probably being pretty disrespectful of you right now... angry... insulting. This is not about you. It's about (1) the shame and guilt she feels about what she's doing, and (2) about the fact that she's realising she's not (financially or otherwise) independent like the people she's hanging out with are. It's classic MLC -- the grass (any grass) seems greener than what she's standing on, and it's irritating to her that she can just easily be on that other green patch.
The decision whether to grant a D or not is yours. In the meantime don't support her. Be the best dad you can be. Take care of yourself -- for your own sake and the kids'.
I'm currently in limboland myself... but have chosen not to discuss D with W right now at all... it doesn't suit me and I don't think it's the best thing for either of us or our son, so I won't validate that option with a discussion.)