The short of it: I'm in Plymouth County in MA and I know that long-term, I want to divorce my wife. But I need timing advice.
- Me: F/T middle management job with very long commute.
- Her: stay-at-home-mom (since before 1st kid was born) w/ no job.
- Married almost 10 years with drama along the way
- Kids: 2 daughters (8 & 5)
- All 4 of us been living in our home for almost 2 years (mortgage is 22% of my income)
First 8 years of marriage, I was always told how everything was always my fault. About 2 years ago she says she wants an open marriage (naturally, she had someone all lined up). I initially agreed, then changed my mind after a month when I realized it was a bad idea. She of course, disagreed so it continued. Because of it, it forced me to (1) become a LOT stronger and independent (2) realize that she has BPD tendencies (everything ALWAYS my fault; marriage counselor asked her what her contribution to our dysfunction is and she said "nothing") & her memory is highly susceptible to cognitive dissonance -- wow, was this one a HUGE shock.
She says that she doesn't want to get divorced and wants us to be a family, but she doesn't want to stop seeing other people because she "knows" that she'll never physically be enough for me (there is some truth to this). We get along well as friends, but clearly have struggled over and over with our emotional relationship. A few times I've let my emotions get the best of me where I've taken a stand against being taken advantage of ("I'm paying for your entire lifestyle, and you're intimate with someone else"). She doesn't like being held accountable and would frequently overspend on credit card on top of the infidelity, so last Fall I eliminated her access to all financial accounts except $500 on 1 credit card for emergencies. I now provide her with a cash allowance when I get paid to cover family expenses + small discretionary. She is a pretty good mother, but has no desire to get a job anytime soon (not even P/T); back when she was working she was fired 3 times in 3 years due to her lack of accountability (in hindsight, I should have given that more attention).
I just read the Real World Divorce chapter on MA and it was sobering.. I absolutely adore my kids and don't want to give up seeing them on a daily basis (even if it's just a couple hours during the week + on weekends). Nor do I really want to pay for a large house that I get absolutely no use from (if I move out). So.. Do I stay "friends" for another 10 years until the kids are mostly grown (if its not painful dealing w/ the wife) or do I start a divorce (based on moral principle) that will give the legal separation but destroy most everything I've worked my whole life for?