Relazioni e amore

After 8 years, I (34M) am leaving my wife (34F). And I have no idea what to do or why it hurts so much.

RedGordita ci racconta la sua esperienza amorosa:

We've both known it as an inevitability, I think, but it's still so much harder than I ever thought this kind of thing would be.

When I met her ten years ago I was a few weeks out of conversion therapy and determined to make it work. We were married quickly (with the strong encouragement of our family and religious officials). At the time I felt like I'd beaten the thing, that I'd “won” or succeeded in changing myself, but it was hard. I loved her as a friend and as a person but as we know, you can't actually change something fundamental about yourself.

Two years in I had a complete breakdown and confessed everything to her. She (unsurprisingly) already knew, and after that the shape of our marriage changed. I wasn't ready to come out to family or be out in the open yet, but it felt good to have it off my shoulders. We decided to stay married at the time for a number of reasons, but opted to have an open marriage. We decided we'd cross the bridge of divorce when we came to it (especially since we knew our families would have questions), and if either of us wanted to leave we'd just say the word.

We spent six happy years together after that both doing our own thing but still happy in our marriage as unconventional as it was. But a few months ago, I met someone and I fell in love with him and I guess I knew it was time. Tonight I told her that I wanted a divorce. She's happy for me, and I'm happy too, but there's also a lot of sadness. I literally don't know what to do now, closing this strange but wonderful chapter of my life after eight years, and I have no idea why it hurts so much. I hope we can remain friends but I know it'll all be different now.

For those of you who have gone through amiable divorces, how did you deal with the feeling of loss and sadness? What helped you to remain friends? I know that it's probably not very likely I'll find someone who had the exact same arrangement, but I'm sure there are people who have gone through good divorces that were still bittersweet.

Huh, your marriage to your wife sounds surprisingly healthy considering its unconventional nature. It sounds like you haven’t had any kids together, thank god.

As Diane from BoJack Horseman put it, “I think there are people that help you become the person that you end up being, and you can be grateful for them even if they were never meant to be in your life forever.”

My ex husband came out as asexual after 3 years of marriage, 9 years together total. I knew. I had basically always known, but I married him for my own reasons and at the time needed the lack of intimacy. As time went on, I needed the opposite, and other things I learned about myself that he was simply incompatible with, discussed it thoroughly and went the open marriage route. Worked for us for 2 years. Around the same time I fell in love with a play partner who was more compatible with what I needed, my husband realised he was asexual. He came out to me and I confessed to him my feelings for the play partner. We both laughed and said we knew and congrats on finding yourself. He moved back to his home state, and I moved in with my parents until new partner and I bought a house.

It worked out very well and we are still friends. I still miss him even though I have since married the partner I fell in love with. I miss his humor, I miss the man who was my best friend for 9 years. But i know he is happy without having to try so hard to please me and i am happy getting what i need in a partner. Neither of us could change who we fundamentally are, and we realized that. It hurts for a while, but it’s the right thing to do. You found your true path, and now you will walk it with someone at your side, not someone walking a parallel path that occasionally intersects.

I have no advice to offer but I’m so sorry you felt you had to go through conversion therapy. Your wife seems like a really wonderful woman and although it didn’t work out for obvious reasons, I’m so glad she’s been a support for you.

The pain is normal, your relationship is changing. You’re both going to grieve the loss of your ‘marriage’. Redefine your relationship to whatever suits you both.

I hope you both find your happiness when the dust settles.

Wow, I can’t speak from personal experience of divorce, but just wanted to say how much I admire your incredible courage and everything you’ve come through to be authentic and true to yourself, and also the courage and love that your wife has shown.

It is normal to be sad in this situation, you and your wife spent many years sharing life together and have obviously been through a lot. Taking a leap into the unknown can be exhilarating but also terrifying. You’re moving away from something comforting and familiar into a new life and way of being. The relationship between the two of you isn’t ending but it is changing, and the sadness really is a reflection of the love and companionship you’ve shared over the years. You can honour that sadness and let it be there, it is ok to grieve for yourself for her and the relationship, as well as having some excitement for the next steps.

It sounds like you guys have great communication and a strong bond and hopefully that will continue into the future.

Not married, but I was with my partner for 8 years and, for most of those, it was a non-sexual relationship. We broke up a year and a half ago because I wanted my primary partnership to be sexual. It was so, so hard but we continued to talk almost every day and see each other often. I fully believe it would have been much easier to process if we’d taken a break from each other to heal. I also fully believe it was worth that slower, more painful healing period because our relationship is in its prime as a best friendship. We have the same closeness without the old resentments. It’s fine to decide to keep the relationship a priority and do the difficult work of transitioning it. It’s also completely fine for relationships to shift and priorities to change. Either way is a waiting game where you don’t want to feel okay with things changing until one day you realize you are at peace with it. Wishing you some peace through this transition.