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So, my wife of 5 years (together 6) left me Monday morning. We were fighting and I was too vicious, like usual. And she just looked me in the eyes, asked me, "Is this fun for you? I'm not having any fun." Then, she packed and left while I went to a client appointment.

We own a consulting company together. I largely do sales, although I am increasing my service offerings and billable hours, and she has, throughout our 3 years, had the vast majority of billable hours and work. I justified this by telling myself that my selling her services took up too much time for me to earn my own client base/income, but that was an excuse, after she got a good client base and repeat customers. I'm now fixing it. I also told myself and her that my disability (rheumatoid arthritis for 30+ years) was stopping me. That's only partially true, and I wasn't doing the best I could to manage my disease.

She's 38 and I'm 35. We don't have kids. We have a great dane that she took with her.

Of course, there are money problems -- big ones. And I wasn't satisified wtih our love life. And she didn't like my heavy marijuana usage and I didn't like her chronic drinking. And she has a much better work ethic than I, although I am significantly better with people -- our strengths used to compliment each other, I thought. Also, I have a vicious temper and have been using my anger as a go-to emotion for a long time, as a way to deal with my fear, insecurity, and pain. Albert Ellis, Ph.D is helping me with that. I am also in constant pain and that likely effects my mood. Also, I strongly suspect she's never truly been attracted to me and may have been kidding herself about this. I'm a good looking guy who is a little crooked, and I'm great with people, but I'm not a stereotypical domineering man, and this is, I fear, what she was looking for.

If not that, she at least wants me more assertive and less aggressive, which I can definitely understand and agree to work on.

In short, I'm a handful. But, on her end, she's got to have things her way and her point of view is the only one that exists. That's all the negative I'm going to say about her at this time.

So, she's been gone all week. I've spoken to her a few times on the phone, and she has told me she "needs more time" and she will "talk to me later", which at one point she described as Thursday or Friday night. She didn't call last night. She's seemed upset but not angry on the phone when I talked to her. I have no real read on what the discussion tonight will entail, but I have to tell you, I fear the worst. I think tonight will be the end. She's tries to be a very objective woman (of course she reads a lot of Ayn Rand), and, looking at it from her point of view, I can't imagine myself as anything but a liability. Unless you count the soft stuff like being good with people, etc. Which I don't think she will count...anymore. My very limited support structure (I know thousands of people but have only told 1 about this -- and not family) warns me to not blame myself too much.

I'm already working on the fixable issues above such as anger, work ethic/earnings, and drug usage; however, it's the soft ones -- the lack of attraction, possible loss of love, and new-found need to be in her own space -- these worry me. I can't fix these at all. And most of the stories I've read here (discovered you today), if not all, end badly, after the wife leaves because "she needs more space".

I think, if she calls tonight, it's going to be the end. I'm trying to prepare myself. I've given up my anger, which was a weak way out anyway, and I've called my buddy and warned him that he'll likely be on duty taking care of me tonight.

Any advice?

Thanks and take care,

Jooky
 

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Do you love your wife? You don’t state in your post. Giving her space at this time is the best thing as that is what she is asking for. Don’t dote on her or make scads of promises. Be calm and cool when speaking to her, but be caring also.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Ahh, sorry. I thought I had mentioned that.

Yes, I'm in love with my wife. I'm completely nuts about her and love telling her so, and also telling everyone I talk to in my role as a salesman (that's a lot of people, boss). I guess, I haven't been showing her. Or showing her in the right way.

She's also nuts about me. And I'm very confident in saying there isn't another guy, and I know that I'd never cheat on her nor have I.

Maybe she just needed a break. Maybe it's that simple. Of course, since she's not talking to me and she's dragging it out for the "big conversation", who knows?

I'm pretty grounded right now. I reminded myself of who I am on my own (I'm a pretty cool guy, ya know), and I also thought about whether or not we benefit or harm each other as a couple. We're both very smart but also very stubborn, and we seem to bring out the best in each other...but also the worst.

It's a world of extremes in this house. I think we could both use some more consistency. I've got my fingers crossed, but I know that we can both do well on our own. So...

Thanks for the reply. This board is helping.
 

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From a woman's point of view, I can see how staying with someone with a vicious temper would be too demoralizing. Frankly, it sounds like you really mean you are verbally abusive. For her own mental health, she needs out, maybe for a time, maybe for good. I would be very hesitant to encourage a woman in this situation to "try to save the marriage," because verbal abuse is tough to fix. She needs to figure out why she's put up with it for as long as she has, while you need to find a way to stop doing it. I'm sorry; this probably isn't what you want to hear but better to think about the possibility that it is what SHE is hearing/seeing, and to approach the problem more objectively. I'm also sorry you are in chronic pain, which has to make it tough to avoid angry outbursts, but perhaps you can learn not to direct those outbursts at the person you love.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
We spoke this morning and decided to amicably dissolve our marriage. We're keeping the company going for income purposes, although we won't be working together.

My temper was only a symptom of my unhappiness. Her drinking likely was her symptom. We weren't a good match, although we did have a good time and learned some lessons from each other and accomplished a lot.

The pain is manageable. I've been prepared for this. I'm taking some CYA moves to protect my assets, despite our divorce being amicable, because you never know what person your loved one will turn into during a divorce, but we're playing nice so far and I think we can make it though this fine.

For the record, we were both "verbally abusive". I think I likely made my part sound worse than it was, and I thought I was doing a good job of seeing it from her perspective. And I'm continuing to be gentle as I lead us through this divorce.

Ehh, I'm a good guy. She's a good lady. We'll be fine.

But not together.
 

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Sisters359,

Your judgmental post was off-base and was unhelpful. During a time when I was already feeling horrible about myself, you encouraged me to feel worse. I owe you no justifications as to why your assessment was wrong, but I and the many friends and loved ones who surround me know who I am, and you don't.

Look in the mirror, though. Do you know who you are? Where are you now? I see you and I joined this group around the same time. I have 11 posts and you have 1,300+. My divorce is final, and I'm very happy about it. I met my girlfriend 2 months after my ex-wife left me, and I moved in with her about 9 months after that. And we're doing great living together. I even moved across the country to be with her. I got a job within one month of being here, have gotten numerous promotions since then, and have moved forward with a kind woman whom I love deeply, my new girlfriend.

What have you done? You may want to look in the mirror before you again kick someone who is already down.
 
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