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June 25, 2010

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Crystal

I can tell by the way you write about Dave and your life, you do indeed love them both. Its hard when you have spent years trying to convince yourself, and others that see your life (some more deeply than others) that everything is OK. I lived this same tangled web, trying to make sure everyone else was "good" before I worried about myself. This included my family (I didnt want them to see what my relationship was really like). I lost friends and family when I left. It was more difficult than anything I could of ever dreamt. I have 3 kids and the guilt I had from "breaking up their family" ate at me. HOWEVER, I did get thru it. I moved on. He moved on. We chat like friends again. I am a much MUCH better mother. I dont leave for 3 hours to grocery shop, or find things to do just to be out of the house. I fixed me and became the person I wanted to be all along. AND, I met my absolute soul mate. Life, which continues to throw me curve balls (HELLO 15K year pay cut) is also allowing me to be the absolute, hands down, happiest, honest and liveliest I have ever been!! It will get alot harder well before it gets easier, but it will get easier. You deserve to be nauseatingly wonderful (that is now how I describe my life)-Good Luck, let the next journey begin!!!

Crystal

hydrogeek

I didn't know what to say when I first read this, but wanted to say something. I'm sorry you guys are going through this hard time. I want you to know that all of the words you have written the last few years, on saying yes, on doing it right, I think they might have saved my marriage, or at least changed my attitude enough to allow the "in" to creep back in. So thank you. I'm sorry they didn't work for you the same way.

Laura

Whoa - I am as shocked as your other commenters. I want to say that I'm sorry you are going through this and I hope it has been well thought out and you've attempted to work through things before you made the step of filing. As others have said, I think the whole 'IN' love is a bit of BS. I have to admit that I don't always feel 'hot and heavy' toward my husband. We've been married 11 years with a 6 yr old and 19 month old. It is HARD to feel IN LOVE when we work all day and then come home to all the responsibilities and lack of time. Recently we took the time to celebrate our anniversary with a night out (restaurant/hotel). I have to admit that I was a bit nervous that we'd get in the car and start driving and have nothing to talk about all night without our kids/friends around. Turns out that if you get us away from home, a couple of drinks, some great food, and the knowledge that we had a nice hotel room bed waiting for us, we had more in common than JUST the kids.

The really strange thing about learning this is that YOUR SEX LIFE that you so often bragged about is something I've thought about when I've felt the 'blahs' in my own sex/romantic life. The fact that you've said how often you have sex and how important it is to your marriage has made me think about the effort that I put into my marriage. It feels like this is some wierd joke. I understand not telling the internet EVERYTHING, but it almost feels like the other stuff was MADE UP if this post is true. I wonder what the point was in your other posts if they were so far from reality. I'm just stunned.

Good luck. Again, I hope you've tried everything before you decided to chalk it up to not being 'IN' love. Your kids deserve for you to have tried it all.

Will continue reading and wishing you the best.

Amanda

I will agree with the others that this is shocking. I'm personally surpised because the picture you have painted of your relationship on this blog and twitter is almost always rosy. Which makes me wonder if you've been truthful, or just writing a romance novel on this blog?

Of course, our personal life stories are private, but since we've both blogged about our lives, they're now not so private.

You can't blame your readers for not wanting to hear more details because divorce seems like such a contract from what you share. If the stories you share on this blog are true, than I can only assume that one of you was caught cheating. It's the most logical deduction that an outside reader who doesn't know the "real" Amanda would make.

The stress you've been going through over the last year is likely going to be the most difficult of your life. It's not uncommon for couples to struggle in their marriages during these times. As a financial planner, YOU know this because you've seen it many times. The foreclosure and David's job loss along with parenting two small children while you re-start your career is NOT EASY!

I look forward to reading more as you totally change directions in life.

Good luck to you. I wish you the best.

Kirsten

What a hard decision to come to - for all of you. Thinking of you.

Jamie

Holy cow, this one caught me by surprise. I am so sorry that you are going through this, and promise to buy you a GIANT margarita if we ever meet. Take care, and keep your chin up.

heidi

I read this post yesterday morning. I've come back here several times and reread it with the intent to comment, but it is just so hard to know what to say.
For your sake, for Dave's, but most especially for Alex and Genoa's, I sincerely hope that things can be salvaged.
I have been married for 15 years. "In" comes and goes. There have been seasons of joy and some of pure white knuckled endurance - like when we lost our house.
There have been times when, though I loved my husband, I didn't like him all that much, and I'm sure the feeling has been mutual. But we found the other side.
Look, no one can really tell you what to do. Most of us only know you from your writing, which I believe to be truthful, but only a pinhole glimpse into your life. You write what you want to portray. You show us the sunny-side up part and leave off the burned toast. I get that.
You will make your own choices and you will live with them.
I know that you don't believe in God, but I do. I will be praying for you and your family and I hope with all my heart that things will turn out well.

Stephen

Dr. Janet and "Bill" both addressed the aspect of infidelity. I had thought of that also. Sadly, when someone tells a spouse or SO that they are no longer "in love" with them, but that they do still love them, it's usually a precursor to the..."I've fallen in love with someone else..." speech soon to come. I really really hope that isn't the case here. If it is, then this entire blog is frankly just a sham. What a surprise, someone blogging their life on the internet turns out to be lying about it. Score one for the cynics.

Did you seek counseling at all? How does Dave feel about this? I think he is older than you by some years? The poor fellow must be utterly devastated to be losing his wife & the kids & the house in one fell swoop. How will he ever recover from this? Speaking for the male species, I know I would be utterly broken and shattered.

Unless there is an aspect we don't know about (abuse, infidelity, substance addiction, etc.) it's not too late you know. Consider what lies ahead for you both & the children. You may think you will find a mid 30's hunky architect or forrest ranger who's never found the right woman & will love your kids but what's more likely is a lot of time in front of eHarmony sorting thru dodgy profiles of 40 something divorced account executives and insurance salesmen who have kids themselves (and many of these guys just looking for a quick hook up). Single men without kids are looking for single women without kids. I have a LOT of divorced friends (all professionals), and they all ended up with divorced women with kids. I don't mean to imply this is bad, but it may not be the romantic "fresh start" you expected.

Consider this along with your romantic notion of "starting over" again. You (and Dave) are going to be introducing your young children to a carrousel of strangers as you date and try to find the person whom you will be "in love" with. And in the end, will it really be different or better? A few years with the next "Mr. Right" and do you really expect to feel the daily passion and thrill of being "in love"? No one does, no one. But you can be happy now, and provide happiness for your family "now". Splitting the kids up between two families means you will both miss wonderful moments that you should not miss as a family. Strangers will be raising your babies you realize right? Strangers will be tucking them in at night, driving them in their cars. Strangers will be helping them buy that prom dress or getting over that first crush.

People don't "find" love & happiness in life. You "make" love and happiness through strength and commitment and dedication and with the love of your children and family. Just because you are at a low right now doesn't mean it's time to jump ship & look elsewhere for love. "These" are times that define who you are.

This is the "for better and worse" that you dressed up all in white for and vowed with all your heart to honor.

Laura

Wow, Stephen, you make a lot of good observations on what it to come. I had those same thoughts, but was afraid to come off too judgy and make an already bad situation worse by pointing out the bad things that will come from this. But, I'm glad you did because there may be something in there that helps to put things into perspective for her. I wouldn't want to make that argument to a couple who just couldn't get along, had abuse or infidelity, or any other thing that would make a marriage not work. But in this case, not being 'in' love just doesn't seem to be a good enough reason to end things. Of course there may be more, but that is the reason we readers were given. It just isn't enough to end a marriage and a family over.

Georgia

Thinking of you all but know that if you made this choice then it is the right one for you and the children. I wish you all the best and hope you can feel all the support emanating from these comments.

grechen

You gotta do what you gotta do. I am at the tail-end of a divorce and honestly... as hard as it is... I've never been happier.

I saw your status change on FB today and wondered what the hell it could be. Like others that have posted my jaw is on the floor.

Big, fat hugs to you, D and the kiddos. I won't say I am sorry because if you have made this choice then it is for the best. Stay strong, Sista!

Alyce

I'm so sorry to hear this. I will be thinking warm thoughts for all of you during this stressful time.

I hope that your decision brings you peace.

Dawn

I know entirely what you mean, my dear.

Be well.

sye520

I am really shocked, just like many before me are. And I do also feel a bit jilted as a reader. Seriously, all the "I purr yes", "I say yes", here's a pic of Dave and me, this is what "love looks like in real life" and now this? I liked you because you came across spunky, wise, grounded, although a little too sure that misfortune would never befall you. You portrayed yourself as a rock-solid financial planner and you lost your house. You portrayed yourself as a mother/wife solidly attached to your family and now you are divorcing because you are not "IN" love? I do understand that the blog only portrays a sliver of your life, but it seems completely different from reality. I do wish you and your family, especially your kids the best though.

Maureen

I am so sorry. I hope writing will at least provide some comfort.

Stephen

Although my posts may sound to the contrary, I also hope for a speedy and as painless a transition as possible.

Laura Troll

Thank you, Stephen, for saying all the things that I couldn't put into words. I hope YOUR words are heard, and taken to heart.

My heart aches for those precious babies.

Kelley

Although obviously we only get a sliver of your real life here, I join the legions of shocked readers who feel like this totally came out of left field. I don't even recall much writing over the years portraying "normal" marital struggles, much less any real honesty about how this year has impacted your lives, which, DUH. This year has been pretty rough, and it's been glossed over in my opinion.

I went through a very rough time two years ago, we were on the brink of losing our house, declaring bankruptcy, etc, and I seriously considered divorcing my husband then. It just would have been so much easier to start with a clean slate and no, I was nowhere near "in love" with him at that time. I got some great advice from my mom to not make a decision about that. Work out the huge stuff... the house, bills, what to do about it all, first. Make no other decisions. I did what she said, we struggled through it together, and ultimately we're still married. Am I "in love" with him on a perpetual basis? No. Don't plan to be the character in some romance novel. It ebbs and flows. Some weeks, some months, some years, are vastly better than others. It is constant work. We still go to marriage counseling. It's helped, a lot. You've given no clues at all about what work you've done before making this decision and with two kids in the mix, it's just mind boggling.

At 37, I can tell you that since my own parents' divorce when I was 4, I have never felt the impact more than as an adult. They did a pretty good job screening us from the crap while we were still kids, and it's really only since getting married myself, and having a kid of my own, that I really keep feeling the devastation of their divorce. Mixed families bring a lot of difficulties, forever. The complications and angst their divorce caused will really never go away. I don't have any memories of my parents as a couple. Genoa won't either. That's heartbreaking. Staying married for the sake of the kids is, in my own humble opinion, more than worth it in the end. Unless you're experiencing some sort of abuse, or he's an addict, or he cheats, to me once kids enter the picture, the deal's done. I'm so sorry for them that this is happening. I hope you'll read the book "The Divorce Culture" by Barbara Dafoe Whitehead. It's very eye opening. Good luck to you, and most of all your kids.

serror

Wow. I am shocked, but completely understand the difference between love and in love. I am sorry to hear that you are getting divorced.

But good for you for being honest with yourself and your family. I wish the best for all of you during this tough year and beyond.
Maybe think of this year being about changes that are somewhat out of our control being necessary to jump start you on to a different path..

Patience

Of course it is very risky for you to share this sort of pain with the internets and I'm sorry your family is going through this.

I think Stephen said it very, very well.

I was very unhappy for most of my marriage. I divorced when my kids were 10 and 8. Yours are much younger. There was definitely more to our unhappy marriage than just not being in love and we addressed our issues in counseling for years. In retrospect I wish I'd sucked it up for the benefit of our kids and stayed together until they were about 18 and could better handle it. Divorce is so hard on the adults and its harder on the kids, even when you do it responsibly. My children are young adults now and it still sucks. When my kids have kids, my *grandkids* are going to have divorced grandparents. Sad.

When you have children, especially young children, your happiness has to go on the back burner. I don't believe that often used line about "your kids can only be happy if you're happy." They don't have to know. They only want the security of their parents together. I sincerely hope for your family that you have a different outcome.

Gry

Add me as another surprised reader. Shocked, actually.

When I first read it I kept waiting for the joke. When there was no longer any chance of this being a prank I had to go hug my husband and ask him kindly never to not want to be with me. Luckily he abided. For now.

And the thing is, I have fallen out of love with him, many times. But when we got together, when we had kids, when we got married we made a commitment, so when I no longer feel that spark and I can feel him getting needy, I remind myself of us and try harder. I don't know - maybe you did that already.. It just never came across here, that there were problems that you were trying to fix, hence the shocked crowd.

Have you ever had a romantic dream that sort of came back with you when you woke, you know, you get a little disappointed because there were all these strong feelings in the dream and then you wake up to THIS, to life?

I can't help but think you spent so much time reading romance novels that they got stuck on your brain and, like one of those dreams, you go around feeling like something is missing when really it's not.

But hey, I could, and probably am, very wrong on all accounts. There are after all two people in this and Dave must have his own version. For the sake of everyone involved I hope you all reached the best possible solution you could.

And I wish you both love and happiness, in whatever form it may take.

Kristie

Stunned. I'm absolutely stunned. And a little heartbroken. Your marriage seemed rock-solid. I wish I could have been there for you more through the tough decisions. You have my love and support, Amanda.

Elizabeth

Oh goodness, how I can relate. We didn't have children but the rest I could have written myself..I lived in denial a long time and some of that can be linked directly to blog posts.

*hugs* It is the worst and best thing I have ever experienced in my life. I don't wish you the pain, but I wish you all of the good things that are to come. I have you on my goodreads/book lush but just found your blog. Weird timing. My ex and I amicably parted in November.

Holley

Financial trouble can really take a lot out of marriage. It can kick it's ass down the street and around the corner. Advice from a stranger is about worth what you pay for it...but I can't help myself from adding just a little prayer that you take the divorce slow and make sure you won't regret it.

ashley

I'm with Stephen. The grass isn't greener honey. Take your nose out of the romance novel.

All I can say is I guess you'll just have to see for yourself. Been there, done that- trust me.

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