Marriage and the Husband-Wife Relationship/my wife wants to leave me for a woman
QUESTION: I don't even know where to begin. Married 22 years. dealt with infertility and could have biological children so we adopted a wonderful girl who is now 12. she has always been the main financial support of the house. I make about a third what she does. I had a small business (just me) that failed after 7 years. she got a job half way across the country and I followed her. I always went with her, supported her. I know she has been unhappy for awhile now. 3 nights ago she says she wants a divorce. tonight she says she is in love with a woman she met a few weeks ago, and has never spent any time with only texting and phone calls. Our sex life has been laking,but not gone,since we couldn't conceive. I still love her with everything. I am lost,and angry and scared. I have no where to go. I am not even sure if I can afford to live on my own. I think she is unhappy with herself and wants something new in her life. I just can't see giving up on 22 years for some one she just met. She has never shown any interest in women before. I know I have been far from perfect or even very good husband. She doesn't even want to give us/me a chance to win her back.
ANSWER: Hi Paul~
You should tell her your not interested in a divorce. That you want her to agree to counseling before you even think about filing for a divorce. This way at least you can say you tried and you gave it your all. And then if it doesn't work and she's still wanting to divorce, then you can weigh those options next. If she's never shown any interest in women before, she might not even have a clue if she really loves her or is even remotely interested in being with another woman. It might be that she's emotionally attached to this other woman. And this is why she feels she's in love with her all of the sudden. Typically one isn't going to fall in love right away with someone they just met and started talking to a few short weeks. As you said, it could be that the marriage has hit a rough patch and she's focusing on this other woman who's paying attention to her when she so desperately needs it at this time in her life. That's not a good enough reason for her to want a divorce. Besides, since she's been the main supporter during the last several years of the marriage, and you have a minor child in common, she might be ordered at the very least to pay spousal support to you, should there be a separation and/or divorce. She might want to consider that as well. She stands to lose a lot in this marriage. It'd be cheaper for her to keep you around, and to try to work things out. It's not uncommon for a couple who have been married long term to not have that spark and connection that they once had. That's probably the biggest complaint that I get from my clients. Marriage is a constant work in progress and it takes two ppl to make it work. Marriage can be a very tough and challenging thing to navigate along with way in life. Communication is also key in any happy, healthy and successful marriage.
You need to try to sit down with her and have a serious heart to heart talk with her. She needs to know how this is affecting you. And what you're willing and unwilling to put up with in this marriage. Hopefully she's willing to give the marriage a shot, and if you can't work these issues out, then you can explore other options available to you. Don't go down w/o a fight and don't be willing to give up so easily. I hope this helps you some.
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: I have made it clear to her that I am willing to fight for our marriage with every ounce of me. I started "the love dare" and have rushed through the first few. I should have dome something like this a long time ago. She said her mind is made up. I told her I will not give up. I went kind of crazy today with e-mails and texts. The words just kept coming. She was going to stay somewhere else tonight, but I convinced her I would calm down if she would listen. I talked fora couple hours. She answered a few of my questions. we mostly went in circles. It scared her when I mentioned taking our daughter and the house. It was mean of me to even say. I assured her I would never do that to them. But I hope it shook her a bit as to what she could lose. I tried to remind her of the good times. Loses I shared with her. The times I held her while she cried. She finally agreed to think overnight about reconsidering her "decision" to go to this other person. I asked her for the time to show her my true Godly love for her again and to stay away from the other person for that time. I have 30 days. I hope she can open her heart to me again. I did mention counseling. At first she said flat out no. Now I don't know.
Your words have helped so far. Anything else is appreciated.
Hopefully you can make some significant progress with her in those 30 days, and get through to her that divorce, at least for now, isn't the answer she's looking for. It's not going to fix or cure her problems. She needs to agree to work on this relationship and at the very least put forth the effort and do what it takes to make it work. If in the end it doesn't get any better or just doesn't seem to be working out, then you might consider giving her a divorce, if there's no improvement. Counseling should be a must, so that she can see what needs to be done or if indeed she can fall back in love with you. She not going to ever know unless she tries. I hope everything turns out for the better for you. Good luck.