The start of November 2016 was a wonderful time for me. After 6 months of being unemployed I found a solid, steady job in my chosen field. It is highly competitive and a job like mine is ferociously sought-after. The location is 2 hours south of where my wife works in a fantastic, but unstable job. We would see each other 3 or 4 days a week (different days off!). We have spent a lot of time apart for work during our 10 years of marriage and this seemed like no big deal to me. We have a wonderful 5-year-old. I was so happy to start here, where we could base ourselves in the years to come and hopefully add another little soul to our family. We could even buy a house, of which I've dreamed for years...
Then I was hit by a metaphorical MAC truck.
She hasn't felt love towards or from me for many years... she thinks we're more like roommates... she is attracted to someone at work... she isn't sure I'm attracted to her or love her.
This is the goddess of my life. I was shocked, hurt, scared. I set up counseling for us, got "The Five Love Languages" and began following it, set to work showing in a natural way everything she means to me. I made some deep changes. I was controlling about many things, including money, in our marriage, which was a big failing. I made tremendous sacrifices for her career success and foolishly treated her like an investment. She joined my religion before we got married, and it never sat well with her. (A few months ago we left this church together. I thought it would be a bonding experience for us and it seems to be the only thing we are close on.) I'm working on fixing these bad traits that have alienated and disappointed her and am having much success there.
This personal work is not enough. No matter what I do, she says, she will leave me if this feeling (or lack thereof) in her heart doesn't change. All she can muster for me is a love like a friend, and "It's not enough." At the beginning, she was deeply sorry to hurt me this way. Now it's routine. She says she wants to want a relationship. But she's making very little effort. She'll try one thing, then give up on it right away. She's started talking to me like a facebook friend going through rough times, "Oh, you're very attractive.. you'll do fine." As if everything is over already.
Because it is.
I'm isolated from all support as an expat with no friends in a new city. I can't sleep at night because of this sick feeling in my heart. I recognize it as despair, and I've never felt it before in my life. To think that there are other human beings who go through things like this and much worse... it's almost more than one can bear.
Thanks for letting me share my trouble with you. Any uplifting thoughts will be much appreciated.