Divorce after 34 years together

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    My husband told me last November 2018 oh, that he is no longer in love with me. He left me on February 1st. Long story short I have been in counseling ever since he left. And I’ve been hospitalized twice. I didn’t see it coming. We’ve been together since we were 17 years old. We’ve been married for 29 years and together for 34. He has a girl who is a friend that he calls his BFF! I found this out by snooping otherwise I would never have known. I’m just so lost right now. I feel so alone in the world. I bought a house of my own, and I’ve been in it for 2 weeks and I’ve never been so lonely in my life. Just wondering if anyone else has been through this and what your hints are for getting over the loneliness!


    Dear Jenn:

    I haven’t been with a partner for that long but I know a man who has been with his now ex wife for that long. She ended the marriage with him. He was lost too, lonely, like you. I can tell it hurt you a lot when he referred to another woman as his best friend forever. As you see, there is no forever.

    I need to be away from the computer for about 11 hours. I would very much like to read more from you. Please do post here anytime. Use it as a journal of sorts, express your thoughts and feelings. I will reply to you when I am back and anytime you post, if you would like me to.

    I hope other members will reply to you as well. Please be good to yourself today/ this evening.


    • This reply was modified 2 years, 3 months ago by anita.

    Hi Jenn,
    I am no expert with divorce and I can’t imagine how difficult this is for you. I do however, have experience with helping someone through a break-up from a long-term relationship. I would like to share some tips for getting through it and getting over the loneliness.

    1) Acknowledge that this is something difficult to go through, so accept and feel the emotions you are experiencing. If you’re angry, sad, lonely, that’s perfectly fine. The only way to get over something, is to go through it. Do things that will help you understand your emotions – go for reflective walks, journal your thoughts

    2) Recognise that you are stronger than you know, you WILL get through this! Life is unpredictable and what happened is not your fault, sometimes things just…happen. And that’s life. But whatever life throws at you, you will get through it. I was impressed when I read that you bought a house on your own – that’s amazing! The strength to do that says so much about you

    3) Lastly, the loneliness. Perfectly understandable. Why not see it as a time to get to know yourself? Begin to love your company? Try this out by thinking to yourself “what do I want to do right now?” maybe it is taking yourself out for a coffee with a good book on a sunday morning, maybe it’s having a glass of wine, maybe it’s signing up for that yoga class you’ve always wanted to do? Don’t forget to reach out to your friends and family too (if they live nearby), invite them over to your new home for a dinner party perhaps?

    That’s all the advice from me. But I do hope this helps and you soon come to realise this is a time for YOU, to re-discover who you are, learn about your emotions and what they’re telling you, realise you’re a strong person and know that sometimes, in life, things happen for no reason so don’t feel bad, that’s just life.

    Sending you lots of love xx


    Hi Jenn,

    Firstly I want to say how sorry I am for what you’ve been through. It is the most devastating thing! To be turned away after being together so long. For not being appreciated for all you were and did for them. And the sense of abandonment and pain – it’s deep!

    My husband of 20 years said the same thing to me in July 2016. And then it came out two weeks later that he’d actually found someone else. I tried but nothing I said or did would change his mind. I moved back to my home town in February 2017, taking my three teens with me. At least I had them. But they would go to visit their dad sometimes and the loneliness was unbearable.

    All I can say is that it gets better! It’s been nearly three years now since he told me, and two and a half years since the divorce has gone through. I’ve worked hard on my healing, focusing strongly on self-love and self-care. I’ve joined a dance group, found hobbies and interests to bury myself in, and been as gentle with myself as I possibly can. It’s not easy as self-love wasn’t always my mantra. Making an effort to go out to friends and family, sometimes even when I’m tired, has also helped with the loneliness. The last time my kids went away, I had finally reached the point where I could relish in the silence. It has taken me years to get there. Yes, I wouldn’t say I prefer to be alone, but I’ve learned to find good in it.

    I’ve also learned to find a sense of freedom and independence in being single. Many days I long for someone in my life, but other times, I love being able to do whatever I want, whenever I want, without having to answer to a husband. Sure, I need to consider my kids, but it’s different. There’s a certain magic to being single. Yes, one day I’d love to find someone – at the right time, but for now, I will try to find the joy in this season of my life. It takes time to get there, but it’s possible. I was very attached to my husband and my whole life revolved around him. So, if I can get here, I know you can too.

    Could you possibly not find a room mate to live with? I know some people aren’t wired to live on their own for long periods of time. If not, a cat or dog? Or even a bird. They can be great companions.

    I sincerely hope that you can find the joy in the small things, find a support network around you, and find the deep healing you need.

    Much love,




    Loneliness is really hard especially if you have devoted your life in a marriage for so long.

    Kathy has given great first hand advice and experience about how to handle this transition.

    I learned to seek out activities that I liked or always wanted to try.  Meetups are good for this.  This way I would enjoy the activity with others.  Also I volunteered where I was helping others.  This way I got out of myself, my own misery.  I reached out to friends and family.  I looked to create a community.  I went to Buddhist temples not only to meditate with others but also to meet people and to have a regular place to go to.  I chose my volunteer work like that, i.e. to make it a regularly scheduled thing.

    On my alone time, I poured out my heart and misery by journalling.  I did so by creating a blog.  Also I got a dog.  Getting out to walk and exercise on a regular basis by a creature who unconditionally loves you helps.  I jumped into reading a lot of self help and spiritual books as well.





    I’m sorry you are in pain.

    We divorced after 25 years of marriage and 3 children. It was a decision based on one of us being keen to experience more in life  (work-life balance, learning, travel, skills, languages, voluntary work) following ill-health retirement from a toxic work situation and the other wanting an ever more rigid lifestyle with impending retirement (‘watch tv and do absolutely nothing ever again’). I’ve probably indicated which I was!

    The realisation that one can be lonely whilst with others, +/- in a toxic work situation, because of unmet needs has been transformative for me. I have pills, counselling, and now treat self-care as my ‘job’.

    You are grieving for the loss of the future life you expected.

    You feel lonely but want to feel loved/appreciated/useful/sexually attractive etc. I have found keeping a journal helpful to break down the steps needed to feel happier by following the sort of practical suggestions above.

    You have bought a new home – what an achievement! Is it in a state to invite a friend or neighbours to visit? By which I mean- electricity, water, sewage system, something to sit or sleep on and a beverage of choice. If so, book someone in, even if they need to bring provisions. You will have plenty to talk about even if it’s just ‘chat’ rather than more emotionally involved topics. Can you volunteer locally, in something that keeps you absorbed for a few hours?

    Big hug, Rxx




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