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I have been peppering this forum with pieces of my problem, but basically, I need to know how it is possible to believe my wife again. I need to know how to believe that we can really build our relationship again.

If we make it there, my wife and I will have been married for 8 years in July. So apparently, my wife is in the midst of her "seven year itch."

A little background: My wife and I met freshman year in college, we started dating after about a year and a half of being very close friends (took her that long to dump her jerk of a boyfriend). We got married right after graduation and I thought have been happy since. Of course there were things that we didn't love about life and each other, but we had a connection that seemed to transcend all that. Apparently, it was really in my head and she was just playing along.

My wife has not been happy from the time I first met her. She is the only child of a couple that divorced when she was a young teen. She was rebellious and a bit of a bad girl. Her first long term boyfriend was just like her: passionate, rebellious, troubled. When she met me, she met the opposite of him: reserved, patient, kind, funny. She met the type of guy that you look for when you want to get married and settle down. Well, it looks like things have been too quiet for her and she has started to crave the old ways, and in some respects, her old relationship. She craves the passion and danger from her youth and that has resulted in her drinking more (sometimes alone), smoking (which she hasn't don since college), and the worst, starting a relationship with someone in her office. For a couple months she talked nonstop on her cell, she sent nearly 1000 text messages, and she spent countless hours on the computer chatting with this guy. When we tried talking about what was bothering her (and before she revealed her relationship with him) she would get frustrated and would leave. I found out she went out with him and his friend to a pool hall. At this point, question whether or not there was even "his friend." He is the opposite of me in many ways. He is ex special forces, he is a wannabe gangster who pimps out cars and produces hip hop in his spare time. She swears she hasn't done anything physical with him, but the betrayal has already occurred. She allowed herself to go down this path, despite knowing that it was wrong, despite her friends telling her it was wrong, and despite all her promises to me to be open and honest in our relationship.

I have to admit up front, that although I have had my suspicions for several weeks, she only confirmed it on Sunday evening. I am still sorting out what I feel about all this. After talking to several people that she trusts, she told me Sunday night that she wanted to give her marriage another try. She says she understands that if she left under these circumstances and didn't try to fix the marriage then she wouldn't be able to live with herself. If she tries and then we fail, then it is ok. She said she would end her relationship with the other guy, but they are coworkers so they will still be in constant contact. She was too weak to avoid an inappropriate relationship before Sunday night, how can I believe that one day can change that.

Although I felt slightly better that she said she would work on her marriage, I am having a hard time believing that she really wants it to succeed. Not once did she come out on her own and apologize to me for what she did. She talks about it as if it were something that she had to do and that it is ok because of that. There seems to be very little remorse about betraying the man that has loved her for 10 years. The man that was buy her side during some severe physical ailments. The man that was by her side and picked up the pieces when anxiety and depression nearly killed her. All of our history doesn't matter at all to her. She says she loves me, but it is with such a businesslike tone, that I don't believe her. She is seeking counseling to figure out what she really wants. After just one session, she feels really excited because she can abandon me and our relationship and it will be ok, as long as she is happy about it. The way she has described "working on our marriage" is going through the motions without intimacy until she feels like she is happy with it or not. Then she can walk away, guilt free. Not once has she said she wanted to work on our marriage because she loves me. Not once has she said she wants to work on our relationship because she wants it to succeed. It is something that she doing for therapy.

I know that I am still raw and irrational from the crushing blow she has dealt to me, but I can't see a positive ending for me. She has already accepted failure as a positive option and simply working on getting to a better place individually so she can leave. My biggest problem is that I love her dearly. Every decision I have made since I married her was geared towards trying to help her be happy. I have given up career aspirations, friends, even a little of my own happiness, in the hope that she would simply love me back. I still want her. I still need her. I can't envision ever being in love with someone else. I can't imagine anyone else as the mother of my children. I am hopelessly in love with a woman who can't wait to be alone.

I don't know how to believe in her. I don't know how to trust her again, I don't know how we can succeed as a couple because I don't believe she wants it. I feel like I am begging for a second chance when it should be her begging for forgiveness. She doesn't want forgiveness, she just "wants to be happy."

Do I just let her go? I don't want to, but I feel she is going to hurt me again. Maybe by cheating, maybe by just deciding she has "tried" long enough. I have never had a lot of self esteem, but everything I did have was tied to her, so I don't know where I can find the strength to trust her. I don't know where I can find the strength to believe that it will work out. I feel like I should pull away and start preparing for a life on my own. How do I dull the pain of being in love? How do I build myself up after having everything that I have ever wanted or worked for taken away from me?

Thanks for listening.
 

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For any relationship to work it takes two people to put everything into it. It doesn't sound like she is willing to do anymore then leave you with a clear conscience. I would look at her ask for a seperation and tell her then when she is willing to put an effort into the marriage you'll be there. Either way it sound like you are going to lose her.

This sould be a time when you look into yourself. Build yourself up, build your confidence. Take up a hobby so you can enjoy yourself and have fun.

draconis
 
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