Completely down after 22 years-don't know what to do

by Alfredo
(Phoenix, Arizona)

Long story short: together with wife for 25 years, married 22. I adopted her son when he was little. We had a daughter together. Both are grown and out of the house on their own. We've always had major issues, and stayed together to raise the kids.


Present story: I am successful and have a full time job making good money. My full time job is my dream job. I've always had a second job, even before I met her, and for a while was making really good money, but that second job dried up and I pull in about 1/4 of what I was making before with that second job. I still make good money but not as much as before (120k/year vs 145k before). My wife works part time 9 months of the year, about 12-15 hrs per week. She doesn't work from mid May to mid August. She makes good money for what she does (about 1400/month). She has a psychology degree and is brilliant. She works out 3-4 hours per day, gets 300 dollar haircuts, and spends a lot of her money on botox and fillers, which runs in the thousands. We do not share accounts and never have. Her money is hers and what I earn is ours. I've made a lot of cuts within our budget and on paper we should be fine, but that's not good enough for her.

We have many issues and always have. We don't really talk about our financial situation together and don't try to work together on it, and when we do it always ends in a fight. She expects me to go out and get more work to make up for what was lost. I've been trying to find extra work in my field but there is nothing out there and I've applied to over 30 different places and have followed through. Keep in mind: I already have a full time job and a second job. She works part time and has loads of time to work but spends much
of that time working out. I know she doesn't want to work full time. She has told me that. We have zero intimacy and haven't had intimacy or sex for 3 years. We never hold hands. We never hug. I've tried but she always backs away. She kicked me out of bed last October and I've been sleeping in another bedroom since then. We don't wear our wedding rings. I stopped wearing mine last year when I noticed that she stopped wearing hers.

I went to therapy by myself for two years back in 2011, and invited her to go. She won't go because she doesn't want to deal with her issues (and she has many, among them bulimia, anorexia, insomnia, just to name a few) and she thinks that pretty much everything is my fault and my issue. I'm not a perfect person at all and I don't want to play the victim, but I like to think I'm a pretty decent human being. I was and am a good dad. I'm not the most amazing husband but I've never cheated and never would.

For years I've been at the point of wanting a divorce, way before this financial situation came up. Things have really never been good in 22 years of marriage. There have been ok times and good memories with the kids, but there is no "us". I have brought up divorce many times. I never follow through. But lately I've been pushed to the edge. I would lose financially in a divorce, as she would get half of my retirement fund, which is considerable now because I've been putting a lot into it. But I'm getting to the point where my happiness would make it worth it.

This story doesn't really fully explain the deep issues that we have, but trust me I am at the point where I'm losing my mind. I'm going back to therapy next week. I'm lost and confused and frustrated. I cry a lot. I have never posted to a forum like this, but I'm desperate.

Click here to post comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Relationship and Counseling Forum.