Jump to content

5 years divorced.. still stuck still struggling


puty

Recommended Posts

I have been divorced for 5 years now and I am still struggling. I still love my ex wife and every time I see her or see the kids the heartache refresh my memories. Even when I watch TV or movie that has a husband wife relationship in it I cry and become incredibly sad. I have been paralyzed by the loss of my family and my wife. When we got separated everyone thought it was a joke. No one thought it could happen because we seemed so right for each other. She seems to have moved on has a BF that she will probably marry soon while I sit stagnated and unable to move. I have tried to date and I have dated many women, had relationships with them but I never felt an emotional connection. I have tried to connect, I have tried to move on but I struggle. I have since my divorce started drinking way too much to try and fill the void that was lost. I have tried to replace her memory with new toys and trips, I have changed my career, I have gone into hiding, I tried to go out and meet new friends. However all of these things seem to lead me back to the same place.. lost with who I am. Me and the ex are friends because it is best for the kids. I tried the NC thing and to be honest we don't have much contact Maybe once a month maybe twice in regards to the children. Recently at a Christmas program with our kids we talked and as always we connected and she knew me, I knew her. We could finish each other sentences and laughed at the same things. As always it felt right.

 

I was married for 16 years, we got a divorce because that is what she wanted. To my thinking we got divorced because 1) she met another man and 2) she was unhappy with where life took her. These two things is why I believe we got divorced.

 

For the last 6 months I have been holed up in my house really only going out to see my kids and on occasion with some friends or family. I say holed up because I quit my career, I stay at home being very unproductive and not having any desire to do much. Now I know what clinical depression is and if reading this your probably going to say "your depressed" I really wouldn't argue with you. I took antidepressants for a year and while they helped with sadness issues they didn't address the deep longing that I have. At this point I really don't know how to move on. I know we should work on self and become a better person I just have become so despondent that I have lost the desire to try.

 

So then how do I get back up and move on? I have had friends who Divorced and all of them seem to be very happy that they are single, they have moved on and glad that they are single or in a new relationship. I however can't help but feel immense remorse over my past. I regret everyday. I am unable to form new relationships, I am unable to move forward, I am stuck.

 

I do understand that all of the solutions are inside of me. They are all about my ability to get up and put one foot in front of the other and move forward. To that end I have put one foot in front of the other. I did that for years and it was not helping so one day I concluded that none of it was helping so I locked myself inside my house and now I am stuck here waiting... not for someone or something but just waiting. I don't intend this message to be a pity party for dear ole me although it may read that way, it is really just a way to communicate my story to a stranger. Maybe this will help me move forward and maybe it won't.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry to hear your hurting. You are not alone in feeling this way. Many people really struggle with divorce. 16 years is a long time-she was your life so its hard to get on with life without her

 

have you considered counselling? It may help you to get some closure and finally close that chapter in your life.

 

It seems like you have tried everything else at this point. Staying stuck in the past is really unhealthy and you need to take control of your life now.

 

I believe men find it much harder than women to move on. Most the women i know have never pined for an ex for so long. I have never pined at all. Im not sure why its harder for men-all i know is it is. But i hope you will find some peace and happiness

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ditto Shelty ^^

 

Quitting your job/not working is a big mistake!

Your mind is wired* in such a way that a job could really help.

How do you pay your bills?

 

Wives seem to move on more quickly but the reality is they just start a lot sooner than you.

 

The question I have is why she began to shut you out of her heart years before the divorce?

 

 

*Not necessarily related this thread but interesting:

Wall Street Journal, 12/10/13, Personal Journal, Brain Wiring In Men Versus Women, by Robert Lee Hotz.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I dont know if its just that. I mean even if hes the cause of the breakup or he initiates the divorce and she doesn't initially want that to happen-women still seem to bounce back faster. Maybe its coz we deal with grief and stress better in general.. i dont know. Men dont really talk about it either which makes it harder coz he feels isolated and alone

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think I was the cause of the divorce. But that is my opinion in her Opinion I am the cause of divorce. She woke up one day and said this is not where I wanted to be at this age of my life. In that way she wanted changes and I was an obvious change she was not happy. I think there are probably several dozen reasons why we got divorced as there are in all divorces. From stress to work to boredom. Lester I've enough to savings to have to work for several years. It may have been stupid to quit my job but I just needed to change I was so miserable I was looking for anything to spark me. The reality is I'm still lost without my rock.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds like your marriage broke up about the same time mine did. We had been together for 21 years and married for 17.

 

I cried every day for a year, every other day for the next year.

 

I am now on antidepressants but that only addresses the chemical imbalance issues. I had to do a lot of counseling and internal work to begin to heal my heart.

 

You sound so very low- please make an appointment with a therapist to help you through this dark time in your life.

 

Think of the love you have for your children. They need a healthy dad and you deserve to lead a healthy and happy life.

 

One book that helped me was "The Power of Now" by Eckhart Tolle. It made me realize that life is not in our control and it is important to get to a form of acceptance.

 

When you are mired so deep in your unhappiness then you are missing the beautiful things that are happening to you- like your children growing up! Start focusing on little good things in your life- like your favorite music, a great cup of coffee, the fact that you are alive today, your precious children. Focusing on little positive things will help.

 

Please do get that professional help right away. It will save your life.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think I was the cause of the divorce. But that is my opinion in her Opinion I am the cause of divorce. She woke up one day and said this is not where I wanted to be at this age of my life. In that way she wanted changes and I was an obvious change she was not happy. I think there are probably several dozen reasons why we got divorced as there are in all divorces. From stress to work to boredom. Lester I've enough to savings to have to work for several years. It may have been stupid to quit my job but I just needed to change I was so miserable I was looking for anything to spark me. The reality is I'm still lost without my rock.

 

Yeah, it really does suck to through it all away after being married for a long time. I was with my ex for 23 years. You need to move past the "I don't think I was the cause of the divorce" mindset. Obviously, something was not working for her to get to the point of divorce, whether it was another guy fullfilling those needs or not. You need to really do some intraspection. Look back, learn and carry that forward. The last thing you said is that you are lost without your rock. *You* need to be that rock for yourself and for a potential future partner.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Piling blame on oneself does not help anyone. I don't think going back over all the reasons why it happened is healthy. Sometimes people just change and grow apart, sometimes the little things get forgotten in the hectic lifestyles we live today, sometimes our goals change and we are no longer on the same page.

 

OP you obviously loved her deeply and you didn't do anything that suggests this is your fault. Sure some people deserve what they get if they had an affair or started gambling the family home away etc but this is not your fault.

 

If your wife was unhappy for a long time, then she should have tried to fix it. She could have tried talking to you or marriage counselling but she just let the problems build until they got too big to ignore. Its not your fault your not a mind reader.

 

Please go and see a counsellor OP. Life is for living. You need to try and pick yourself up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe men find it much harder than women to move on. Most the women i know have never pined for an ex for so long. I have never pined at all. Im not sure why its harder for men-all i know is it is. But i hope you will find some peace and happiness

Wives seem to move on more quickly but the reality is they just start a lot sooner than you.

Both of these.

 

One of my theories is that (and maybe it was already mentioned in this thread) that women tend to gather a support system of friends and family when they're going through a major event like this, and men . . . often don't. Divorce is a death of sorts, and you go through the stages: denial, grief, acceptance, etc. (I know there are two more but too lazy to look them up). Women are usually at Acceptance by the time they file for D -- I know I was -- so it was a huge shock for me when I was all done with the marriage and filed, and H went solidly into the "denial" stage. I was very clear with him that I was going to be filing for divorce so this should not have been a surprise to him, but I didn't realize at the time that even though I was fully over it and moved on, he was just starting!

 

OP, you grieve on your own timetable, but five years does seem excessive. Yet not unusual. I know a man 11 years out of his marriage whose exW is remarried and has a child by her new husband, and yet this man's life is completely ruined and he cries all the time while he waits for her to see the light and come back. She ain't coming back.

 

What helped me process everything in the years prior to divorce, is to imagine what you want your future to look like, and then make a plan to get there. It may or may not include a new woman, but more like: do you want to be working in a career you enjoy (and maybe meet some interesting people along the way)? Do you want to stay living where you are or move? What sort of activities do you see yourself doing (for example, I saw an awesome 9mm in a sale magazine yesterday for only $300.00 and I was positively salivating. Because I wouldn't carry my .22, but I would carry a 9mm so maybe that's my inspiration to get my CCW? Sorry, went off on a tangent there). Or do you want your life five years from now to still be holed up in your house crying over romantic TV shows? Shelty is right, life is for the living. Don't waste yours because you don't get do-overs. This is it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Puty,

You said, "I think there are probably several dozen reasons why we got divorced as there are in all divorces.

- True but there can be differences.

 

You said, "From stress to work to boredom."

- How about ignoring her? Refusing to listen to her advice? Never being interested in her day? Ie(So what did you do today) When dinner going to be ready? You're wearing that! I'm tired. My Mom really knew how to cook. etc., etc., etc.

 

You said, " Lester I've enough to savings to have to, (not have to?), work for several years.

- No you don't… living is more than just paying bills. You need to be out there lad! (I hope your not living with your parents… you ruin them! Enabler school)

 

You said, "It may have been stupid to quit my job but I just needed to change I was so miserable I was looking for anything to spark me. The reality is I'm still lost without my rock.

- It was… she could care less. You only cut yourself.

 

-------------------

Have you ever watched the Quarterback in a football game analyze pictures from a play that only happened minutes ago? Thousands of hours of practice and study and still sits looking at something that he must have know/saw a million times!

 

Why? It's the way we are wired.

 

If you knew for sure you would never marry again, I'd say okay, forget it all and just move on. But you and I both know that's not the case… you've been dating! Dating for the wrong reason's but dating nevertheless.

 

Once you get past your current funk you will begin dating agian for more of the wrong reasons. You'll find someone and marry again. Without objective, forensic review of your past marriage failures… you will repeat them.

 

If that's what you want… start planning for divorce number two today.

If not, purchase/read Gary Smalley's "If only he knew"

He will refresh your memory of all possible forgotten offenses.

 

Once you know the role you played in your marriage's failure; you can ask your wife for forgiveness. You can forgive yourself. You can move on, be confident and happy and marry again without fear.

 

 

Helpful hints:

- Get a job!

You're letting a part of your brain reserved for work's success/failures to be taken over by the ex.!

 

- If you are living with parents/someone; move out!

 

-You're killing them!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm not implying that OP should put the blame on himself but rather just understand the reasons. These reasons may or may not be the ones you mentioned. I'm just going by my own experience and what has helped me gain acceptance and move on.

 

I asked my then wife to come to counceling when she asked for a divorce. She refused, it was too late for that so I went by myself. It *did* help insofar that I gained better insight into my situation. I'd recommend at least giving it a shot. I also basically took the approach that most woman do by seeking out a support system.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am in the middle of a divorce, I was emotionally abused for years and I lost my job and the next day my husband emailed me (from a Navy ship that he was deployed on) and asked for a divorce. Thankfully, I have a very supportive family, relocated to my home state, found a new job and am moving on. My soon to be ex husband is back to running around with his ex, who he dated immediately before me. The thought of them together and first made me want to vomit, but then I realized that this is a new opportunity for me. It wasn't right so this is my chance to make it right. And if he wants to go back to someone with whom he was not happy the first time, that's his choice. I'm moving forward. I'm not looking back as I'm not headed that way. I will send many positive, healing thoughts your way. I truly believe that you will become open to love again once you decide it's what you want. I know it's hard, trust me, I am right there with you, but you might want to start faking it till you make it. Just pretend you don't need her anymore. Tell yourself there is someone out there for you, someone who is a better match for you. Believe that you deserve it. And I promise it will happen. For both of us. Take care.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...