When You Have No One to be Frustrated with but Yourself

A quick post to get this off my chest.

I know how well I lied to myself because I feel the pain of heartbreak.  I felt it in January when I initially told Bennett it would end.  I felt it in early April again when I chose to let go…and thought I let go for real this time.  But I must not have…the few days between the “I spoke to her text” and the “I’m not ready to leave” text gave me too much hope.

I told myself to be patient, that I knew the first “I spoke to her text” was simply the tip of an iceberg that may never melt or even crack.  I knew it.

I knew it.

But, deep down, somehow, I also convinced myself to hope.

And now I feel the pain of that hope and I hate it.  I hate that I did this to myself.

Nothing has changed with Bennett in fact.  He says he still loves me the way he always loved me but he cannot leave his family and his marriage.  He currently has no intention of going back to an intimate relationship with his wife, but knows he cannot leave.

I don’t truly understand this.  I feel that if he loved me the way he says he does he would leave.  I spoke to Ann about this and she reminded me “it’s not about me.”  But, I’m not sure I really understand.

How can you love someone so deeply yet stay married to another?  Why make your life such a lie?

I’m not debating the fact I need to move forward, I am just attempting to rationalize something for myself and i seem to be stuck on this thought.

He feels he cannot make the decision to leave his family, he is sure of it now.  He has decided he cannot be selfish, that they are more important than anything he would do for himself, and that deciding to leave them for me was an ultimately selfish choice.


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.

23 thoughts on “When You Have No One to be Frustrated with but Yourself”

  1. Ann is right: It isn’t about you. I have never had a relationship with a married man other than my own, but I always thought this was the way it ended. When one person you have extensive history with wants to try again, most would always choose the one with more history.

    I had my own version of this last year. I was dating someone who I ultimately would have been very compatible with but my ex-boyfriend came back into my life and wanted to try again. I gave him another chance… and had to break the news to the guy I was dating. He was devastated and wanted to know why I chose my ex over him. I said, “He and I have history. You and I are new. There is no comparison.”

    It’s not the same but I think it’s similar. I think in almost all cases with someone who’s married, they will not give up the security and bond of their family IF their spouse wants to work on the marriage. I don’t think it has much to do with love as it does about commitment and keeping promises. He obviously still has some love for his wife if he has decided to stay.

    I’m sorry you’re hurting. Breakups suck. 😦

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Oh! I didn’t realize his kids were that old.

        Hmm. That is a bit odd. Do you think he was honest with you about how much he loved his wife? Maybe he was downplaying his feelings for her?

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Don’t blame yourself … it’s human nature to preserve hope. But now you know the final answer. And no matter what it said, or even hints of what “might” be, it won’t change. There is no reason to hold any longer on to the hope.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. There’s a huge difference between “can’t and won’t” do something. He can do anything he wants, but he won’t, because he simply does not want to. As I said much earlier, only a vey small percentage of married men leave their spouse. If you’re looking for the possibility of a long relationship with a man, he for many reasons, should not be a married man.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. The only condition under which Bennett would have ever left his wife is if she would have made it easy for him and told him she agreed the marriage was dead. Bennett convinced you that his marriage was dead and not salvageable. Yes, the passion is dead, but he does want to salvage what they have left and he doesn’t want to be the bad guy that left his wife…much less left his wife foe another woman. I don’t think Bennett is a strong man at all and he would rather stay in an unsatisfying marriage than be the bad guy who left an unsuspecting wife.
    Ì predict that Bennett will try to hold onto you as well as his wife. You bring the joy and passion where as she has the history and stability he is used to. It’s best to walk away…and then never date a married man ever again. It’s always the same ending.

    Liked by 5 people

      1. I can wrap my head around that if there were young kids. My kids are still in grade school so my husband and I have opened our marriage to date other while still living together and raising the kids. It’s working out well. But if his kids are high-school and college age then this is just a farce. He is lying. They are remaining married because he is too afraid to be the one to end it. His kids are already raised..so the real work of “parenting” is done…and it’s silly of him to try to use this as his excuse. He is just not wanting to leave.

        Liked by 4 people

      2. Yes that’s how I feel. He is afraid. He totally admits that. He’s deathly afraid of losing the respect of his children and her ability to care for herself. He doesn’t want to take away the family home from them. I understand somewhat but not the real depth of accountability he seems to have for his children.

        I read about platonic parenting and it seems to be a new wave of how many couples choose not to divorce to raise young children. I wanted to consider that with my x initially but we couldn’t get along. Good for you that it works!

        Liked by 2 people

  5. Something that is also hard to accept is that he loves his wife more than he would ever tell you, or maybe even admit to himself. You’ve heard his version of everything, just like I heard Tony’s. And while I do believe for both of them a big piece of their staying is about the family unit, tradition, obligation, cowardice, etc., I absolutely know Tony would never have told me about his depth of love for his wife (even without intimacy) for fear of losing me.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yes, perhaps. He has said he loved her very deeply and still feels very deeply about her and always will. I don’t think he regrets his marriage just regrets not making changes years ago. I do believe he loves her deeply, I don’t know if he knows if he can be in love with her again.


      1. So then not terribly surprising that for a man like Bennett, deep love + stability + honor etc etc is a greater number than his love for you. I’m sorry, I know how much this brand of pain sucks.

        Liked by 4 people

  6. From what you’ve shared with us, she is dependent on him for everything she has. House, money, etc etc. Not that that helps you understand or accept his decision any better, but it just makes it all the harder for him to leave her. And yes I’m sure he doesn’t want to be the bad guy in his grown kids’ eyes either. You can’t compete with their history together, and nor should you try.
    I’m not doubting that he had/has deep feelings for you M.
    Time… it’ll just take time, but you will bounce back from this.


    1. Yes you are exactly right. I did try. I can’t regret knowing him and learning I can have exactly what I want and need in a partner. If he stays, he won’t have that but he will have his family. Great point.


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