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Bittersweet ending...?


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I completely appreciate any advice or kinds words that may be left for me here. It is hard to write this...


I am married to my best friend for years (I am almost 30). I left my home town and a great job to be happy (finally, I thought). I am happy but still adjusting to being in a different place (without my ex nearby)...


My ex and I are still close friends, even with pain between us. We shared a few precious years together. He is 56...and a very caring man, spiritually in tune with me, a great father (all children are grown and very supporitve). He focuses on a successful career to keep his mind off of losing me. My ex would love for me to be with him now, wants me to run to him...but I cannot leave a great relationship where I feel loved and accepted. This continues to be his request out of sincere love, he says. I believe he is just hurting that someone else has the woman he wants and never fully accepted into his life...


He was reluctant at first to get invovled with me due to the fact that his divorce was yet to be finalized and he had a woman who was a girlfriend who lived far away. Our love was unexpected for me too! But we fell in love and he began to work on "repairing his life" so that he could provided for a family with me even after a divorce (really, from *two* truly unhealthy relationships). I was his "dream come true," a chance to be loved and happy how he always wanted. To me, he dragged his feet and settled into the fact of my being with him regardless of his status. There was no preparation to live together or saving for the future. There was little communication on his part to disclose a time frame to me (believe me, I aked!)--yet I stayed by his side. This wore me down in every way imagineable.


I still love him for the person I know he truly is...yet after a couple of years of looking forward to marriage, a home, and children, I grew emotionally tired of not knowing when we would be able to move forward. I still love him...and after two more years have passed, I am married to an amazing younger man but missing that relationship badly. I feel like I accepted my ex and endured an unhealthy relationship (due to his mere separation) into my life and I am still paying for it emotionally by missing the great times and travels and hopes that we had. I read Special K's posting about breaking up, so I supposed I have to find ways to deal. It is difficult...bacause my mind sometimes wanders to the past and even a future with my ex. I thought I was over the relationship...but sometimes I know that there will always be the pain of a love never consumated.


He calls me sometimes and calls to me as well. He still sees us together, even when I say that I am here and married and have been too hurt and disappointed by the past to go return to him. He has been divorced for a year and feels like he "lost two wives at once." Sometimes, I am so infuriated that he did not fully accept me into his life when I was there completely. Sometimes, I miss our closeness. I just know I do not want to hurt my current relationship (my hubby knows the past was difficult for me emotionally but *not* how much I still love my ex). It's difficult to let go completely...especially to witness a bittersweet ending that could have been almost like a dream come true.


I am hoping for any adivce concerning how to deal with the past. Thinking about it and longing for it might complicate my future. Thanks for your time...

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I think you should let go of your past love. It didn't work out, just take it to mean that it wasn't meant to be. You are now married to someone else.

THAT was meant to be. For you to leave this for a past love that didn't happen would be a mistake, I believe.


I know you are very conflicted, but you have to choose. Sorry, can't offer kind words...

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There were details I left out about the situation. I understand that everyone can only respond based on what I divulged. The facts remain that the ex went through a lot of abuse in the marriage (they had been separated for years), but has good intentions and the ability to love me in ways that have yet to be repeated. We share a bond. And I think that if he had not dragged his feet on the divorce (trying to be financially secure), we would be together and happy and my now husband (who's been a good friend of mine for over 10 years) would have been HAPPY for me to finally be happy.


I know deep down that my husband, who knows how open and loving my heart is (even if I *seem* like a huge jerk), married me partially because he thought he could make me happy. He is selfless sometimes to a fault--he also has good intentions but married me *knowing* that I still had love for my ex that I chose to leave due to circumstances. I think my husband wants to somehow magically heal my life, but that is not what I hoped for. I want an equal partner and genuine love, not someone to feel sorry for me. And honestly, my hubbie, as sweet has he is, has many places to grow as a 20-something! As do I, I guess.


After a lot of thinking, I recognize that I should not have gotten married until I basically "died" to the past relationship. I needed to be SO far beyond it and closed to it that I never would reconsider. So, here I am--married to someone who usually has my best interests in mind but lacks some self-awareness and spirituality that I would want in a partner. I had something deeper with my ex...we were not two people coming together who wanted to ruin anyone's life. Even though we'd both been damaged, we found what felt like home. With his divorce and ex-wife far behind him, my ex is ready and willing to start again with a family and a career path that we both have a passion for (we work in the same field and have many things in common), even though he his years older than me.


I don't feel at home where I am. I thought I would. I can only ask--should I work to build something new in a somewhat underdeveloped place and keep a promise, as imperfect as I am, or return to a place a part of me never really left that was mostly satisfying/fulfilling?


Please share!

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