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Six months and counting...

It has been six months since I learned of my husband's EA with a much younger coworker. I didn't realize there was such a disconnect between us as I was working, going to school and interning. When I graduated, I landed a job that was quite a distance from home. He worked odd shifts and with our schedules combined with my commute, there were times when we didn't see each other for 2-3 days. Sometimes we spoke on the phone. Sometimes not.

My red flag came about when I began to feel oddly attracted to a coworker. I checked myself often, like why is this happening? And there were times when I was not very friendly to this coworker but that's because I didn't want anything to happen between us. I was able to identify that I felt like I didn't have love and support.
Sometime later, I found out that my husband had an EA with a coworker. He was supportive of her and even bought her what I feel was an expensive gift. Over time, the details came out. He was not intimate with her but he did some things that he should not have done. I was crushed. He maintained from early on that he was not interested in her sexually - well that he wasn't looking to sleep with her. He was strangely attracted. And she became his motivation to go to work at a place that he really didn't like. We had a lot of fights, a lot of late nights and early morning fighting and crying, a lot of ugly things. I thought it would never get better. I considered divorce several times.
One day I decided to ask him, when things were improving and more calm, why he did the things that he did and his reply was that he felt young hanging around with her. That was probably the first time I ever understood his MLC. He has had issues, though I did not know how serious, with the passing of a slightly older cousin and his own approaching 50.
Six months later I reflect on this much differently than when it first came to light. Things are better. We have both changed jobs and shifts. We have had some things happen within our family that were challenging, and could have split us up, but we refused to allow that to happen.
I have moments, but they are fewer and further between, when I wonder how truthful he is about wanting to be with me for the rest of his life. I used to sing "You're the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me" to him but during this MLC shakeup, couldn't even bear to hear it on the radio. I am ready to start singing it again.
For now, I feel like the MLC had to happen to shake things up and make us both see what we have and appreciate each other. I really do.
I just wanted to share my progress. Thank you for listening to me.

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Seven months and counting
by: Elisa

I believe he withdrew emotionally and he did battle demons of what he should have done with his life and how he wondered if he should have dated more. He battled demons of how much he hates his job and how he should have done things differently. Oh, and how much he enjoyed his younger years when he was single.

As far as depression, he has always been depressed to some extent but wont seek help. He was oonfused about a lot of things and couldn't explain much of anything One thing he would say was that the OW reminded him of his mother and how boys are attracted to women who look like their mothers. This was one of the most bizarre things he ever said.

I too hope to never experience anything like this again! I am glad though that I found this website and was able to see how this affects other people.

Six months and counting...
by: NWF

Dear Elisa, I am glad that you posted here and that things are going better for you. I am truly sorry for the problems in your marriage. However, what you explained here has not been a midlife crisis(MLC)....for either of you! It may be a midlife transition but it came no where near a crisis, trust me. Actually, I don't even see the signs of a MLT. Neither of you withdrew emotionally from the other for a year or more to quietly contemplate life or any demons left behind from childhood or your teenage MLT. Many people get attracted to others after a long marriage and possibly have an EA or close to that but it did not become a PA (as you say)and neither of you were thoroughly confused, did a 180 with your life, or walked out with an OW/OM on your arm and blew up your life or your kids lives and filed for divorce. That is what makes this a midlife CRISIS. The ANGER and BLAME towards the left behind spouse (LBS)is something that you never want to experience and it certainty is not shown here either.

MLC takes years to arrive, after years spent in low-level depression, and then you wonder how you didn't see that something was very wrong (they hide it very well). And then, the MLCer spends years in MLC...totally confused. They may stay like that forever as well! They spend much money and bad-talk the spouse until her/his world is in such a tail spin that you can't think straight. They re-write your history together and live in a total state of denial...full of excuses for what they are doing. They lie about everything and actually believe they have it correct. They become the worst narcissist that you have ever heard of. In order to protect your sanity, and money, you have to totally detach from these people....they do not want to talk to you at all, unless they want to manipulate you/kids or make you blow-up at them so they can say 'see, he/she is the crazy one'.

I hope you never have to go through that and I am happy that you seem to be on a better path and now pay attention to each other and have more time for each other. That weekly or bi-weekly date night does wonders for every marriage! But, not with an MLCer, they leave body and mind.

Take Care, NWF


by: Noel

Hi Elisa,
Thanks for sharing your story. I have no doubt it will give hope to many people.

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