When I thought of my life outside of my girls…it felt scary. I was living a pretend life. To the public and to our friends, we had everything. Inside, I had nothing. Empty. Blank. Painful. For a very long time.
I was lonely. I was sad and broken.
In my heart, I know that I tried to make my marriage work. God, did I try. I begged and pleaded for couples counseling. Finally, in September of 2008, I took “him” to dinner and I explained where I was: I’m not in love. I am scared. I can’t do this anymore. I want out. He panicked. I was serious this time and he knew it. I was so alone and desperate that I swore to him that I would have an affair if someone merely HUGGED me.
We started couples counseling the next week. I was hopeful and willing to throw everything into making our marriage work. Four months later, he walked out of counseling while waiving the white flag. I was also done. I was exhausted.
At the same time, our world was crumbling around us. I was in the dark about our finances for years and there was debt that would make your head spin. Some of it I knew about but much of it felt like complete and utter betrayal. I uncovered lies and deception– lies to banks, he spent his parent’s retirement savings and he conned his younger brother out of almost $100,000. I didn’t know who he was.
We actually shared the same home– on the weekends, I stayed in the bedroom and he stayed on the couch. This went on for months. We co-existed under the same roof…nothing in writing and nothing formal.