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Confused In Life & Love


Loves Lost And Found
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Hello,

 

I am in my mid-twenties, married, and have been with the same woman for about six years now. We first started going out immediately on the tails of another relationship that went sour. I have always been a faithful husband, and have not had issues with "wandering eyes" during most of our relationship.

 

Some background: We met when we were in college and fell for each other very quickly (within a week we were saying I love you, and within three months we were alredy talking about marriage). Things felt so right that I didn't question it. We were together for about two and a half years without any major problems, but things started to change once we entered the real world and moved in together.

 

We began having some major disagreements, may of them about financial issues, some religion issues, and many about my work. I tend to be the kind of guy who gets very absorbed in my work, but always try to give her attention - but she still felt like she didn't get enough attention. Conversely, she wanted to do literally EVERYTHING together. I couldn't even run out to the store without her wanting to come along because of a fear she has of being left alone (sometimes, I can't even be in another room!). She has major issues with depression and self-esteem, and often uses it to put guilt over my head to make me do things (as in "I'm starting to feel depressed again - and you aren't helping." or "I need you to pull me out of my depression."). I started getting very frustrated myself, and fell into a depression, as did she. We tried making changes in our relationship, but we still had many problems.

 

Then after about four years of being together, she ended up having an affair. She told me about it the moment anything happened, and I did not take it well. She justified it by saying that we aren't actually married yet, and that it would be different if we were. She had previously acted that the commitment we made was just as strong as marriage, but now changed her story. This is the point that things in the relationship really began changing.

 

She pursued this other relationship, but did not want to break-up with me. I threatened to leave on several occasions, and every time she would throw herself in front of me and it wouldn't happen. I moved out for a time, but she always kept coming back to me. She also claims she never had sex with him, but she spent several nights at his place - even sleeping next to him on a couch. I convinced myself I believed her, but in retrospect I don't think I ever did. We finally decided to give it another try, but she kept clinging onto this other relationship. It took nearly four months for her to call it off, even though she rarely saw him.

 

After we got through this, things started getting better again. We had gotten through our depressions and felt much better. I have tried harder since then to be more attentive and less absorbed in my work. Things really went well for a time - but it also happened to coincide with some financial problems we were having. I think we pulled back together to some extent over the fear of being alone. We put our wedding back on track and things seemed to be good. We have gotten married since and things seemed to be going fine. We get along fine, but many of those old echoes are starting to come back. She claims that I am the only man in the world that she is attracted to - which I find hard to believe, since she is quite the flirt (as I am).

 

Now on to the issue at hand: Within a few months of getting married, I have started feeling more attraction to other women. I have had small infatuations before, and found other women attractive informally, but it has had a stronger pull over me lately. We still have an exciting sex life, but I find myself wanting other women more. I find my wife less attractive now than I did when we were married not to long ago. I never pursued anything, but did note that I was feeling a little looser about my feelings toward others. I have also started feeling more confident in myself than I used to, even to the point of where I noticed that more people (specifically women) actually liked me than I had previously thought.

 

This all culminated a few weeks ago when I met this one woman in particular. She and I talked once in a while, but never really felt anything significant pulling us together. Then - about two weeks ago - we went out to a bar (with one of her friends and my wife, funnily enough, and I started feeling a connection). Okay - maybe it's just the drink - but we did share a lot in common. We went out again with a group of friends and, while my wife was absorbed in her own conversation, we started chatting again and started getting a bit closer. Again, nothing happened, but I started feeling something deeper. I thought about it for the next week and didn't see her, but it kept pulling on me. I suddenly realized that it was more than just infatuation, and that there really might be something between us. Thinking about not seeing her really hurts - and I actually want to keep pursuing this and see what happens.This is what triggered me questioning everything.

 

Regardless of me dating this other woman, if I am having these types of feelings and a very lackluster desire to fix my marriage, am I married for the wrong reasons? I'm starting to feel it might be because of a fear to be alone. Now that I no longer feel "alone," I have wanted to explore more options - and start pursuing my line of work full time. I feel that my wife has been holding me back by forcing me to pick certain friends and not following the things I need/want to do to find success.

 

If anyone wants a good picture of my current relationship with my wife, the play "The Last Five Years" pretty much sums up the major problems in our relationship (funnily enough, we're also both in the arts). And I feel myself becoming unhappier if things don't change (and when they have, the cycle starts again). Any advice? As I said, the issue is not as much should I quit my marraige over this woman, but the idea that I am having these feelings and genuinely want to pursue my independence. I am starting to feel smothered by her and her personal problems that never seem to be resolved. I also feel like we (or, at least, I) got married too young before I really found my placei n the world. I am so confused. Thank you in advance to anyone who might be able to shed some light on this.

 

Thanks all!

 

Loves Lost & Found

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The relationship has a fundamental flaw and it's such a deep hole to crawl out of, and relationships is stil a field where much has yet to be discovered that any amount of counseling, effort, etc. is going to be too difficult for you two guys to work it out. Too much damage has been done.

 

In my eyes, your mind has already been made up. It only a matter of time before things shake out, but at this point the relationship is over and you two are just going through the motions.

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Hey buddy. This is what I think. Marriage is forever. I think that in your head you know that you have your wife forever and that she is never going to leave you. You are secure in your relationship with her. I am not saying that you two will never get a divorce or anything, but psychologically you know that you have her. That feeling gives us men the security we need to pursue other woman, because if something goes sour with these "other" women you have your "security" to fall back on. So your really not scared to venture out and take risks and talk to women, because your wife will always be there.

 

Before you make the mistake of ending it with your wife. You should try a test. Distance yourself from your wife, see what it would be like to not have her in your life. Honestly, Looks only can go so far, but will you ever be able to find someoen that you get along with like you do with your wife?? Also think about that if you do find someone else, you will have to work alot to be able to get the comfort level the way you and your wife are.

 

Just make sure you are doing the right thing...

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