‘I’ve gone back to my wife but I’m still in love with my girlfriend’

‘I’ve gone back to my wife but I’m still in love with my girlfriend’

Dear Coleen

I have been married for 18 years and have an eight-year-old boy and an 18-year-old daughter. In 2016, our relationship started deteriorating and we argued a lot, which affected the kids.

We saw a counsellor, but the following year my wife said she didn’t want to be married to me any more.

We separated, even though I tried to patch things up and last year we left the family home and my wife rented an apartment with my son and daughter, and started seeing someone else from her work.

I also found accommodation and had my son every weekend and various evenings.

After three months of living apart I met someone and fell in love, but when my wife found out, she reverted to behaving like a loving wife and said she wanted me back.

She eventually ruined things between my girlfriend and me by constantly texting and accusing me of stuff.

She asked if I’d see a mediator with her. My girlfriend, who’s been through a divorce, understood and agreed.

It made me think about my marriage and the effect on my son and, after a huge row with my girlfriend in which she was drunk and abusive, she told me to go back to my wife, which I did.

I still love my girlfriend, though, and we’re back on friendly terms. I’m wondering whether my marriage can survive because she’s constantly on my mind.

I haven’t been able to be intimate with my wife as a result, although things are better between us. Do I have a chance of reviving my marriage?

Coleen says

I think you have to look at the reasons why you’ve gone back to your wife. If it’s just for your son, then it’s not going to work. If it’s because you love your wife and want to make it work, then you have to give it 100%.

That means you can’t keep in touch with your ex-girlfriend – no texting, no calls, no meetings. You have to tell her you’re going to put everything into making your marriage work and, if it doesn’t and she’s still single and wants to try again, then maybe you can give it another go.

It seems that both you and your wife got together with other people very quickly after your marriage broke down. You didn’t give yourself any time to think and reflect or get over each other properly.

If you get to a point where you’ve given it your all and it’s still not working, then you can move on, but right now I think it feels to you like unfinished business. But however it pans out, you can’t keep flitting between your wife and your ex-girlfriend.

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