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Husbands current behavior

by Julie
(Concord, CA)

My husband (age 50) had a year long affair which he confessed to in May 2010. We separated briefly then he moved home after a month. Well it was a very rocky 6 months, some good times and some not so good. We have recently separated again because I could not take his hot/cold behavior, the ups and downs and his always needing to be alone. He just wants to be alone right now and is using this time to reflect and decide if he wants to remain married to me. we have been married 24 1/2 years, together for 27 years. I know this is what he needs to do, but it is still very hard. Our 3 boys are reeling and they are ages 18, 24 and 27.

I am so lonely and missing him plus I miss the conversation and the sex! But he needs to do this but I am not sure how I should be acting. I am working on myself, therapy, lots of outings with friends and I just started back to College and I have a wonderful relationship with our boys.

How long should I give him and what boundaries should I set with this trial separation? Also would it be ok to ask him to meet once a week for dinner to talk and keep up contact? I have let him know I do not want a divorce, that I do want and love him but also see he needs this time. I have offered him my forgiveness for the affair and all the pain it has caused and also let him know I am not interested in other men but I do desire sex, my sex drive has increased with age!

Noel's response

Perhaps your therapist could help you figure out what boundaries you want to establish. It sounds as though you are in regular communication with him, so the idea of suggesting you have dinner together on some kind of regular basis sounds reasonable. If you mean 'dinner and sex', you would have to be clear about that up front.

As far as how long he might need to be alone, it can vary, but could be for two or more years. You need to decide whether that it too long for you.

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