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  • #1084607 Reply
    S. Highwall
    Guest

    Hi all,

    My wife and I are getting divorced after six years together (three married). I’m having a damn hard time with it. It’s not an ugly divorce. It’s a La La Land type situation, not in show business but in the sense that her dream job is one place, mine is somewhere else, and even though we both are sad to see each other go, we somehow both know we need to pursue the job. The same thoughts keep running through my head. I feel jealous imagining her with someone else. I hate feeling that way, like objectifying her, but I valued sex when we were together, so I don’t know how to flip the switch and not when we’re apart. But more than that what saddens me is the length of time. Like we spent six years together and we’ll spend maybe 40 apart, and that’s scary on its own, but I’m also worried that she’ll forget all our memories. All the things we did? That hurts the most, because this really felt like a great love story and I built it up like that, so it would hurt to think it isn’t even remembered.

    Any advice on how to proceed here?

    #1084671 Reply
    ron
    Guest

    If this is the end and you spend the next 40 years apart, then it really doesn’t matter how many of the memories she remembers, she won’t be a part of your life and you’ll each have new lives.

    If you are both going to miss the other and still love each other, but have jobs that neither is willing to forego, perhaps try an LDR, getting together as often as possible, with the end goal of each benefiting from the great career opportunity, but aiming to use them as stepping-stones for jobs in the same area.

    #1084675 Reply
    S. Highwall
    Guest

    I wish it were that simple for me. I don’t know. For me, memories are really important and even if we have new lives I would like to think this meant something. Idk.

    #1084741 Reply
    Kate
    Keymaster

    I mean, look, clearly you two aren’t a long-term fit if you’re splitting up for jobs. That’s not a judgment, but yeah, your career is a higher priority than your wife. This isn’t a love story for the ages. That’s okay.

    I got divorced at 28, had been with him since 17. I’m now 46 and been remarried for 7 years to the right guy. I still remember my first husband and think of him fondly. I don’t think about him a lot, tbh, but he’s still a part of me and my story. He’s part of what makes me who I am. I absolutely do not remember all our moments together – things fade, and people remind me all the time of stuff I honestly can’t recall anymore – but I remember a lot. More good things than bad. But I certainly don’t love him still or want to see him or talk to him.

    Anyway, yes, it meant something to her, and yes, she’ll remember you.

    I will say though, and I know you won’t like this, but it sounds kind of weirdly possessive how hung up you are on wanting her to remember you. You are literally leaving her for a job. Your connection is not that deep. You’ll be okay, she’ll be okay. What is the need for her to remember every detail about you? The human mind doesn’t even work that way.

    #1084745 Reply
    S. Highwall
    Guest

    I mean, we are both leaving each other for jobs. I don’t know. I guess when you invest in a relationship it’s at least in part because you have a desire to matter to someone? Like to be clear I don’t want her to think about me every moment of every day. She deserves to move on. But, I don’t know, the idea that even far in the future people have some good memories of a past serious relationship, even if not every detail by any means, indicates to me that it mattered at least.

    You saying you remember your first husband, even if you don’t think about him frequently, does bring me comfort, though, in that vein.

    #1084751 Reply
    ron
    Guest

    It did mean something — in the moment. It didn’t mean enough to either of you for either of you not to pursue a dream job. It didn’t mean enough to you as a couple to even give a try to a LDR. I have a friend who was a submarine commander. He and his wife would regularly be separated for six months at a time — no weekends together, not a shared vacation week together mid-point in the six months, sometimes radio silence. For over a decade. Happily married today. Raised a family together. Some couples can make separations work. You need to set a mutual end date. From what you wrote, it just sounds like each of your prefers to simply move on to the new job and start over as a single. Why is that? What about that makes it imperative that she remember the good things you remember about your time together. How much will you remember 20 years from now when you’re on wife number two and likely raising a family with her.

    You and she had choices and you made what you feel were the best ones. Of course there are regrets and nostalgia. Are you asking ‘did it really even matter to her?’ from the sexist position of believing that as the wife it was her duty to follow you and your career? That is so yesterday and today it is equally valid to ask why you weren’t willing to follow her and work a lesser job for a few years.

    The thing about memories is that old ones fade as you make new ones with new people and new lovers.

    #1084757 Reply
    S. Highwall
    Guest

    I fully know my role in the divorce, and I don’t have any blame I assign to her. I know it mattered in the moment and the fact that it ended doesn’t change that. Maybe I’m just an overly sentimental person, who would like things to matter in the long run just a little bit? I don’t want her to think of me everyday like I won’t. But it’d be nice if we BOTH retained some memories? Maybe my concern initially was exaggerated. Maybe it’s impossible to truly forget everything, so of course there will be remnants

    #1084759 Reply
    S. Highwall
    Guest

    Also interesting you assumed I was a guy lol (or I think you did when you mentioned sexism)

    #1084779 Reply
    Kate
    Keymaster

    When I was 5, our dog died. I remember being at kindergarten and crying my eyes out, and the teacher was talking to me on the floor, maybe I was even in her lap, or she had her arm around me, but she told me, “You’ll always remember him.” And that like blew my mind, that I’d *always remember him.* I don’t know why. But it made me feel instantly better, knowing I’d have the memory.

    If you think about it, nothing is real. Everything just exists in your mind. You can go places that literally don’t exist except in your memory. People who are no longer living, are alive in your head. It’s wild.

    #1084781 Reply
    S. Highwall
    Guest

    @Kate I think that’s exactly why I want it to be remembered. Exactly that. I’m happy that you’re happy with your new husband, but I’m also happy that at least some memories are retained. Maybe I’m just overly sentimental, but I believe that love stories deserve to be remembered. Why else do we love if not to mean something to someone, and for them to mean something to us?

    I don’t think I’m being “possessive” for feeling sad about this sort of thing, but maybe I’m wrong.

    You said you remembered your ex even though you moved on, and I’m going to hope that’s true here even though I will probably never have the chance to find out.

    #1084788 Reply
    ron
    Guest

    The strange thing about your series of posts is that you just assume you’ll remember and she won’t. I don’t think it changes anything if you also are a woman. You had a choice to make: relationship or job. You made the choice you thought was best for you. She did the same. Now, what? You’re having second thoughts? You want to know that you will be close to being the great love of her life, despite the mutual parting. In all likelihood she’ll remember as much about your time together as you will. Again strange that you fear that won’t be the case. That seems a measure of something you sensing is lacking from her end in terms of deep connection/commitment. Perhaps that is why you, as well as she, have chosen to go your separate ways.

    I remember bits and pieces of past relationships. Really not a whole lot more than I remember about a couple of close friends I would have liked to have a romantic relationship. The biggest thing I remember from all of those past relationships and friendships is that I am happier and better off being with my wife. All of those friendships/relationships were great in that present, painful when they ended. They all ended or never to off from more than highly compatible friendship for a reason. None were the right pairing for both of us.

    #1084792 Reply
    S. Highwall
    Guest

    I concede I probably am wrong to assume she’ll forget more than I do, so thank you, Ron

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