Should I Stay for the kids and accept what it is and was

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  • This topic has 11 replies, 6 voices, and was last updated 1 month ago by Maya.
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    Hi everyone,

    I have been posting several posts looking for insights and advice for my situation, but I’m still struggling with what to do. I’m writing again today hoping I could get some good advice from people that had similar situation as mine. And I’m sorry if my post is not too clear.

    I will not get into much detail, I will give some important events that happened in our 12 years marriage. I (38F) , my SO (45M), 3 kids two elementary school one middle school.

    When I first met my SO, I was heart broken by the previous relationship. Then I got engaged with my SO after only 3 months of dating and moved in afterward, then I got pregnant 2 months after moving in with SO. And we kept moving forward with our life. We did have ups and downs during our marriage life as other married couple. But overall, we have a normal marriage. We own a home, both have full time job. Financial is not supper but not struggling

    During those 12 years together, I realized I have never been in love with my SO passionately even from the beginning. I am a romantic person and when I fall in love, I love passionately and unconditionally. SO is nice and good looking person, is a good father and husband. Loves me and very attractive to me. H has flaws as I do as well, but overall he’s a good person. I kept going with the flow.

    Issues started getting more serious when I got pregnant with the last child. I was not happy and got disappointment easily. After giving birth, my feelings for my SO kept going downhill. Then other things happened , SO said something very hurtful and made me feel he never understand my emotions. Then we managed to go through things and kept the family going. In the outside, we have a perfect happy family but I always feel unhappy. My kids are happy kids. I lost my desire toward my SO. I’m not attractive to him emotionally and physically. We did tried date nights, find times just for ourselves but nothing changed on my end. I fantasized about having romance , profound love and intense feelings with someone else

    Then 3 years ago, a major event happened. SO wanted to do something that I did not want to do it, we argued more, the atmosphere in the house was so heavy. I tried to stop him from doing that thing because I aw so clear that it would fail and affect our family situation badly, but in the end I had to support him, because he said it was his passion. And then of course, it fail badly. During this time, arguments happened so often, and at one point, he said something very hurtful to me and pushed me so far away from him. And that’s it, I told myself, its over for me. I did not want to anything with him except things that involves the kids. I did not see me to be with him in the rest of my life. When I had a chance to go vacation, I just wanted to go with my kids and was so fine going without him. I dd not miss him a bit when i was away on vacation. I was even fine with him falling in love with someone else as long as we keep the kids happy. Many times I wanted to ask my friend if she likes my SO and tell her I’m ok if she pursuit him.

    Then I met a person and fell in love with him , unintentionally. He was the one comforted me and gave me advice on making things work with my SO. It’s been 3 years and I’m still struggling to let it go. He’s marriage as well and we both know we could not leave our family for each other. Because of this love, the guilt eat me up, I struggle more with what is the best solution for everyone. One thing I know for sure that I will never be with this man and I accept this and been trying to let it go. My SO did know a bit about this, but not everything , he still wanted to make our marriage work. But he did mentioned that if he knew more about the affair, he would end our marriage immediately. Sometime, I wanted to tell him everything so he would not hesitate to divorce me and I could release the burdens on my shoulder of carrying this secret , but I really don’t want him to be devastated and in pain, but at the same, I feel like I deserve a punishment

    What should I do at this moment? So many time when we talked about divorce and he turn bitter. I feel like divorce will help me move on from everything, my SO deserves someone loves him the way he wants to be loved, I’m not the wife I’m suppose to be anymore. But my kids’s life will be disrupted and I feel so selfish and guilty for wanting a divorce. But I’m not happy with my SO and want to start my life over. If I divorce, will my kids be ok? Will this affect their life so badly? I know as long as we do good on co-parent , the kids will adapt but I cannot be so assure about it.
    Your insights are much appreciated.
    Take care

    • This topic was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by Maya.

    Dear Maya:

    You shared that you are 38, been married for 12 years. Your husband aka significant other (SO) is 45, “nice and good looking person.. a good father and husband.. a good person”. You met him when you were 26, after a previous relationship ended with your heart being broken. You dated him for three months, then moved in with him and five months after meeting him, you got pregnant. The two of you have full time jobs, own a home together and have three happy kids.

    From the beginning, you have never been in love with him passionately, you wrote. After giving birth to your youngest child, your feelings for your SO kept going downhill. “In the outside, we have a perfect happy family but I always feel unhappy.. I lost my desire toward my SO. I am not attractive to him emotionally or physically… I fantasize about having romance, profound love and intense feelings with someone else”.

    Three years ago he wanted to do something that you didn’t want to do (from memory, it was a business venture?), you argued more, but supported him nonetheless, the venture failed badly, he again said something hurtful to you and you told him that you “did not want to (do) anything with him except things that involve the kids”.

    Then you met a married man who comforted you etc. This extramarital relationship has been going on for three years. “What should I do  at this moment… my SO deserves someone loves him… I’m not the wife I’m supposed to be.. But my  kids’ lives will be disrupted.. If I divorce, will my kids be ok?”-

    – your situation requires professional help from a divorce counselor (a family or relationship counselor who has practice counseling couples that go through divorces) to meet the two of you in person and help you and him dissolve this marriage in the most peaceful way possible, creating as little disruption in your kids’ lives as possible; helping you and your husband to come up with rules of behavior before, during and after the divorce, and with an effective co-parenting plan that will work for the two of you, and most importantly, for the kids.


    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by anita.

    Thank you Anita. You have very good memory.

    You have been replying to almost every post in here and you still remember my story. I really appreciate your time and insights.


    Thanks again Anita

    Take care

    Canadian Eagle

    You have 3 options ..

    (1) leave you husband and rebuild your life . You children are smart and know all is not perfect and will understand .

    (2) work with your husband to repair the marriage . This is hard work , but you are both damaged people ( as we are all) , so good communication and honesty may lead to a place where you both work hard for to say the marriage .

    (3) Accept your husband for who he is , don’t try and change him. Be the calm observer of you marriage . Let him be , accept and love him for who he is flaws and all. This allows you to accept the current moment as if you had chosen it .

    The important point is you must accept one of these paths and pursue it with energy and focus . Jumping from one to the other puts you and all around you into an ever ending spiral .

    Always remember that all marriages are similar , the are daily struggles and joys . The tricks is which of the 3 paths you chose .



    Como reciclar

    No! Your welfare is the welfare of the children if you stay and teach your children to accept humiliation.


    Thank you so much Canadian Eagle for taking your time to write your advice.

    If I chose number one, I feel like I will be able to rebuild my life without any assistant from my SO. I’m an independent woman and I am not afraid of starting from the scratch. I am capable of taking care and raising my kids well by myself. However, I always feel guilty and selfish if I chose this one. My husband has been trying to make our marriage work (of course because he did not know much about my affair that already over, I just cant move on from the man yet and  as I mentioned if he knew more, he would end right away) So because he’s been trying to make it work, I feel so bad for him if I keep pursuing the divorce.

    Option 2 will not work in a long run  because I dont have any desire to be with him. He knew about my feelings for him is not there any more, but because of the kids, I try to make everything look normal for them. We don’t fight or argue in front of them, we function out daily things normally.  But I don’t see myself to be with him for the rest of my life.

    Option 3, I do love him , I do accept his flaws and the way he is, I never try to change him. But I’m not in love with him, I’m not attractive to him emotionally and physically.  I love him like a friend, there is no romantic love or intimacy from me for him. He still pays attention and affection to me but I just don’t have the same thing to him.


    I thank you again for your time.

    Take care

    I understand your point.


    Dear Maya:

    You are welcome and thank you for your kind words. You are not in love with your husband. You want to divorce him but you feel guilty about it because you worry that a divorce will hurt your three children, and that it will hurt your husband. Also,  if your husband knew that you had an affair, he will divorce you, meaning he is not okay with an open marriage or a roommate situation with you, where you date other men while married to him. Options were discussed on your thread. Here are the options as I see them:

    1. Live with your husband as a couple until all your children are young adults and then consider a divorce, accepting that this is your life until you are about 50, no longer being stuck in conflict.

    2. You worry a lot about your children’s welfare if you divorce- consult with a reputable child psychotherapist on the matter, share with the therapist the details of your marriage and parenting of your three children, and ask her/ him the questions you asked here: “If I divorce, will my kids be ok? Will this affect their life so badly? I know as long as we do good on co-parent, the kids will adapt but I cannot be assured about it”.

    3. Seek psychotherapy for yourself so to arrive a state of mind where you are at peace and confident about doing what is right for your children.



    Hi Maya,

    In the old days marriages were for the children, not the individuals. If you can hold off until the last one is in college, do that at least. It’s all fun and games now… the children are cute and compliant. But trust me (mom of three here) as they get older you will NEED your husband to tag team regarding the kids. One will be gifted and another talented and have to go to academic and sporting events out of state. One will be flirting with substances and bad scenes at the high school. One will be special needs. One will be devastatingly sensitive. Several scenarios in three different kids (yes, one will have TWO gifts/issues). Trust me, trust me, trust me!

    Also, at thirty something (I REMEMBER!!) your hormones are still like a teenager’s, you are prone to romantic fantasies, your husband is basic and boring… This is just Mother Nature, who knows nothing of right or wrong, nudging you to have a baby with a different male already, one who is ripped and exciting, so you can have add healthy babies with variety to the gene pool.

    In short, stay married until the last one is in college or thirty. When your hormonal flux has ended you will see more clearly.




    Dear Maya

    Sounds like you got married on the rebound and now the chickens are coming home to roost.

    You have had an affair and hurt your husband. You are not afraid of starting over on your own so the kindest thing to do would be to do that and let your husband to the same. An unhappy marriage makes for unhappy children, so it is probably best for everyone concerned that this marriage comes to an end.

    You seem to have enough regard and affection for your husband to do this kindly. I hope you can negotiate an amicable divorce that sees everyone come out the other end happier and able to form new and better relationships.

    all the best



    Hi Inky and Jan,

    Thank you for your time and advice.

    I do think about those life events of my kids that I will be having at their certain ages. I had gone trough some hardship when I had to take care of a newborn and 2 years old and 7 years old while my husband working full time. And I could tell I did manage to get through it well and did not affect him much on his job or stress. I took care of most of everything around the house, he did help me too but I was mainly doing the most. I was not upset or mad at him for making me do most of the works, I just did not want him to get affected on his job performing because he was the only one working at that time. I wanted him to focus fully on his career.  By saying those, I wanted to tell that I am capable of dealing with difficulties life brings to me, I am not so afraid of those hardship of dealing with kid’s issues or the hardship of dealing things about the kids by myself. And also, all my three little angles are very healthy , smart and well behaved.

    Maybe I have not faced the most serious issues about kids, but I do have a strong feelings that whatever comes I’ll be able to deal with it. My  main concern is my kids’ welfare and behave if divorce happens.  I do see and know people close to me who divorce with kids, some of them is doing well, as of I see. Then I read other’s stories, I kinda have mix signals, It’s just not that easy for me to make a decision.

    As for me, the divorce might be more beneficial, like I can feel relief and less guilt about my affair and move on and rebuild my life, my husband can find someone else who truly loves him as he deserves.  But what will happen to my kids emotion and well being if divorce happens? And I am afraid that I will regret making a big mistake and selfish decision and disrupt their life badly. Sometime I’m feeling firm that they will be fine as long as we co-parent well and put their’s interest first. But sometime thinking about the young kids ask why mommy and daddy is not the same house  squeeze my heart.

    Maybe my hormones make feel like a teenager, but I don’t want just to date people around and have fun in a short term, I desire to have a profound and passionate love with someone that I can spend my life with. Not only just those romantic moments. I want to love and be loved passionately.

    I appreciate your time

    Best Regards,


    Hi again Maya

    You say

    “I am a romantic person and when I fall in love, I love passionately and unconditionally.”


    “I want to love and be loved passionately”

    Don’t we all?! But that kind of intense feeling cannot be sustained throughout an entire marriage. Real love must develop from being ‘in love’ which can be more satisfying, long-term.

    It may still be the case that the best solution is divorce but, be warned, even if you find someone to love you ‘passionately’ that passionate phase will not last. Guaranteed.

    You say your husband is a good man in which case you may best be served by putting your energy into your 12 year marriage and giving up your girlish dreams of romance. You already have something many women would give their eye teeth for.

    best of luck, whatever you decide to do


    PS Unconditional love is for children and animals, not adults. 🙂

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by Jan.
    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by Jan.

    Hi Jan,

    Thanks again for your time and insight.

    Take care!

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