I love him and there’s not much I can do to change that. So, if I am honest with myself, I am waiting in some form of limbo.  It must be why I am not experiencing immense loss and grief, at least not yet….I’m not sure, just a guess.

There are days where I think to myself “stop being so stubborn and just wait.”  I realize that’s not a good train of thought to have, but believe me, it’s so much easier to just be in love with him than to be without him.  I also know I can be waiting forever…still, my brain doesn’t stop analyzing and re-analyzing opportunity.

Previously I would have allowed myself to wait, to try and stay in the relationship. I would have allowed myself to keep believing he had the courage to do what needed to be done.

Not anymore.

Someone commented before that break-ups are hard and I know they are because it took me so many years to break-up with my now x-husband.  There’s a good deal of me that feels guilt for being the “push” Bennett might need.  He’s got to do this on his own time and in his own way, I keep telling myself I know I don’t want to be the push he needs.

While I can write about my interaction with Bennett from my POV, I wish I could better express his – though many of you would say it doesn’t matter.  Or, that perhaps what I am seeing and believing isn’t true since I only see one side of the story.

Could be, but the fact is, I do see what I see and I do believe him.

I am still involved, and while I am trying to pull myself out, I also know I am not at the point that I have let go completely.  But, I am almost there.  I feel like the last pieces are crumbling away.

We had a long discussion this weekend regarding why he didn’t speak to his wife as planned last week.  I knew I had said something inflammatory to him prior to leaving work on Thursday, but I didn’t realize the outcome.  I rolled the dice and lost with a comment I made.  I distracted him and put him off his game.   While it wasn’t my fault he didn’t speak to her, I fully understand why.

He thought for a moment that there was no future for us, and if there was no future, then what was his rush to break off a tolerable way of living?  Why upset the balance now?

He fully admits that it wasn’t my fault and it was an excuse.  He also knows that he just isn’t ready to do it, he feels too much responsibility.

It’s ok, there is, at least, truth in those statements.

And that’s just it, despite what anyone else’s perception of Bennett and his wife’s relationship are, they are friends and they live tolerably in peace with one another.  They mostly ignore one another, but participate in activities together as a family and support their children fully.    They don’t fight, there is very little, if any, tension (except when she drinks too much and gets sloppy) and they each do their own thing with no repercussion from the other.  Neither requires much more from the other than whatever the established practice has been for the past 23 years.

It’s still a partnership.  I have no idea if it’s unfulfilling for her, he always says it must be and he’s sure she had an affair a few years back.  They don’t have sex or any type of intimacy (and yes, I believe it completely, I lived it too).  They co-exists as roommates and parents.  But, non-the-less, it’s a partnership that works on some level.  And he is responsible for that partnership and what it’s become.

Bennett, much like me, desires deep committed love and passion and believes in romantic fairy-tales.  He also believes in responsibility and commitment to choices he made long before he met me.  He isn’t in love with his wife, but frankly, its good to hear from him how much he admires how well she has done as a mother.   I wish my x had that much respect for me.    (Yes, I realize respect is a loaded word to use with a man who is also cheating on his wife).   It also feels good that he has finally recognized that he can’t keep treating her like this, he needs to come clean and stop cheating.

Bennett has been able to compartmentalize his bad behavior from his good.  He would rather forget about his misdeeds considering how well he has taken care of his family and his level of responsibility as a husband and father.  He seems to fall in with many men I have met or read about.  They seem to be able to justify their actions because they are hidden, but their “real life” is pretty amazing and people love and admire they care they show their loved ones.  He sees himself as one of the good guys.  Even with his misgivings, there are certain lines he doesn’t want to cross in order not to embarrass, humiliate or humble his wife.

Together, they have built a life surrounded by family, friends and community.  While he is missing intimacy in his life, he still has a very good life.

Some people commented that his wife might like to try again and his reply to that is “you cannot reheat a soufflé.”  He is done with his marriage entirely and feels they have both had ample opportunity to reignite the flame.  He claims he became tired of asking for attention and intimacy.  Again, I believe him because I lived it.  Once it got to the point that I was so disconnected to my x emotionally, I knew I could never go back, changed behavior wouldn’t be enough to correct the damage done emotionally.  Bennett is in the same emotional situation, it’s past the point of repair.

I am not worried he will return to a rekindled relationship with his wife,  I worry he is struggling to leave the family home at all.  I can hear the peanut gallery snort when I say he is worried that she won’t do well on her own.  He has taken care of her the last 13 or so years financially and pretty much manages everything for the family.  She self-admittedly doesn’t know or care about their finances and leaves everything in his capable hands.   Easily flustered by challenges and adversity.  He doesn’t know how she will manage on her own and based on my limited knowledge of her, I would be worried too.  She is a housewife with no outside responsibility except raising children.  I am not saying it’s not an honorable thing, I’m just stating it’s going to pretty damn daunting at 48 years old to suddenly have to get a job and take care of a home on her own.

He claims he still plans to speak to her.  We are back to no contact until that happens.  At least he has admitted to me now that he has no idea *when* and he cannot bring himself to make the move.

Nothing has changed, I think I’m just getting my last thoughts out on paper I suppose.    My resolve is the same as it was and his actions last week pushed me to a place I don’t want to be, which was angry with him.

Don’t get me wrong, I know it’s ok to be angry, but I have really been in a mostly great place in my life these last several months because I have felt in control.  I want to stay there.  Being angry puts me out of control, just like being with him.  So neither of those places work for me anymore.

I miss him, I think of him constantly, but I also know I will move on without him.

I’m not into bashing him, he’s in a worse place than I am.   I have lived through my divorce and my big-broken-heart and managed to come out even better on the other side… perhaps that’s whats driving my change – I know I can do it again.  Sure, it hurts….but this time I don’t feel like I have to walk through fire to come out the other side.

I’m ok in my limbo while life moves on….I will come out of it, hell, maybe Date #3 is just the answer I need.  And if not, dates 4, 5 and 6 won’t be far behind.


Author: Madeline Harper

My journey through divorce and an emotional and sexual reawakening. Love, laughter, friendships, family and heartbreak included. And there is sex, lots of it, so close your eyes and turn the page if that's not for you! While I started this blog as an endeavor to journal my thoughts and feelings in an attempt to better understand myself, it has become an amazing platform from which I have met some of the most interesting and wonderful people in my life. My path is often crooked, but I hope you will share in the journey with me.

14 thoughts on “Limbo”

  1. I know this is an odd thing to comment on given everything you said, but why would she suddenly have to get a job when divorce courts would award her a settlement that continues existing support?

    I’m sure I will come back to comment on other things but that one caught my eye 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Divorce courts don’t award enough for her to live on support only. Alimony isn’t enough. And your comment also assumes he earns enough to support two households as is – that’s not his case. She will need to work the rest of her life if he leaves her. They would have to give up the house. I suppose she could choose support over allowing him to pay for the kids college…


      1. I guess it varies around the world. Was just curious.
        One thing is constant – divorce is incredibly bad from a financial perspective. I remember Tony saying one thing he couldn’t bear was his son not having a house any more 🙄

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yep. Bennett is bothered by the same. And his kids will be gone in 4 months.

        In my case both parties were working – so he is able to support himself with his salary. Even then he wanted to sue me for me because he could. But for sure no one comes out financially pleased.


    1. That is exactly what I said to him. These are excuses because he’s not ready. And not ready is ok. He should make the right decision for him. It sucks for me but it’s better to be honest about not being ready and agree to let go of our relationship rather than make excuses.

      Liked by 1 person


    I’m so sorry but he isn’t available. He may stick in this hopeless limbo stage for years until the kids are gone. You don’t know and you shouldn’t wait. You deserve a life with an available man. You deserve to enjoy your hard-fought-for freedom. You deserve all of that and so much more.

    You are not the reason for his marital issues — you are a symptom (sorry to be blunt). If he had a great marriage, the two of you would never have been. Now, as for your lack of an outpouring of grief – that’s because perhaps deep down, from the beginning, you knew that the relationship was a dead-end. Your subconscious was fully aware of the futility of a relationship with B, but endulged you. Don’t overthink the lack of grief – it’s because you are too smart.

    Gotta run, the Amazon is making some $$ today!!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Everything you said is right. All of it. I really am just unraveling the last pieces of it in my mind. And I have been thinking along the same lines in regards to grief: I knew what to expect deep down.

      And you go girl! So proud of you! 😘

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Something to consider: men don’t have that conversation because of how it will make THEM feel. So much focus is placed on the wife, as if she is the one holding the strings during these moments. But she is clueless to the affair, so it also boils down to his emotions. And as much as we dont want to face this, the reality is- their self esteem will take a massive hit for leaving a wife who has been good to them. They already feel like shit for cheating, now let’s add in having that ‘talk’. No one wants to detonate a bomb over their marriage and happiness which is why affairs are kept in the dark and why men don’t leave their wives. The majority of marriages simply aren’t bad enough to leave.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 100% agreed. Bennett himself said this to me over the weekend. I think he is facing the reality that he will detonate a bomb of his own doing.

      His marriage isn’t that bad. His life is great in fact. He is missing intimate relationship. People survive with less.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My 2 cents: only the men whose marriages are so uncomfortable will initiate a divorce. It’s something like 70% of all divorces are initiated by women. That says a lot. Men are kinda weak when it comes to upheavijg their lives and starting over again. I know that’s a generalization but when are divorce as an opportunity to be self empowered. Men? I don’t know what they think but rocking the boat isn’t something they enjoy.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. So the wife is in the dark, and she would have to work the rest of her life if he leaves her. Hmmm… While it’s honorable that she’s been a good mom and stay at home one at that, I have to wonder, doesn’t she ever want to/plan to work like most of us do or have to? I don’t mean to sound snarky here, but it’s almost as though she’s coddled. Or maybe it’s just me unable to wrap my head around the idea of a woman who never has had to work. (Yes I think that must be it.) But there again I’ve never been married or fully dependent on anyone like that. So take what I say for a grain of salt I guess.
    I’m betting that from the beginning he promised her that he’ll always take care of her and the kids and she’d never have to work again. Will he feel bad for breaking that promise?
    You betcha! And there goes the good guy persona.

    Liked by 1 person

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