A newbie to all of this and I am trying to figure out what are real emotions and reactions and what are rationalizations.
Quick background. Married for 18 years, with a 16 year old daughter (a great kid). I recently turned 45. BS and my relationship has always been a bit unequal, she seems to have loved me much more than I her. Early on I considered calling off the wedding, and shortly afterwards the marriage, because I was concerned I did not love her enough. Then our kid was born. Not sure if I grew to love her or was just consumed with raising our kid. I never had an A, EA or otherwise, while we raised our kid. I traveled a lot with guys who fooled around and they asked why I didn’t fool around. I said, “I could see fooling around on my wife, but I could never see fooling around on our kid.” Not sure if this was the truth or I just said it to shut them up (it worked).
About a year ago things changed. Maybe it was our kid getting close to leaving home or me getting close to 45. I had one fling on a trip, and a couple close calls. Then the A started about 4 months ago. The A started out of town and OW lives on the other coast, though we have met occasionally, and she and I knew it would never be permanent. DDay was a couple weeks ago. I broke it off with OW after BS found out about A. BS has been seriously hurt by the A, and I feel terrible.
Now the confusing part. When BS heard the details she kicked me out of the house and said she wanted a D. What shocked me was my reaction – I was relieved, I felt like it freed me. Not to see the OW, but generally. After about a week away, BS asked me to come back and talk and I went to IC in advance. I talked at IC mainly about how to plan for possible D. Not to stop the D, but about how to fight enough to make feel BS feel good, about how talk to our kid (who was away), and about how to split smoothly.
BS did not want a D but an R. She definitely wants to stay together. I have played the loving and remorseful husband and have tried to do what I can to work with her. I want to make things better for BS, but otherwise my heart does feel in it. I am currently ambivalent at best about keeping the marriage together, though I know a D would be hard on us and our kid.
On the other hand, I realize that relief at a possible D and the lack of feeling might be a defense mechanism or rationalization. Anyone have experience with this?