I know it’s the right decision for me but I do feel guilty on some level for walking out.
I am 44 and my wife is 40. We were together for 20 years and have a boy aged 17 and a girl aged 15.
But it became clear my wife doesn’t respect me and this filtered down to our children.
I explained to them often that I didn’t like being continually ridiculed but they didn’t listen.
I was miserable, so I decided to leave my family home and marriage.
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Soon after I met another woman at my gym who took an interest in me and valued me.
We developed feelings for one another. I felt happiness for the first time in years.
My family then saw how serious I was, but they seemed to think I should still take their jokes at my expense.
When I told them I had no intention of returning, my wife seemed genuinely shocked.
I realise I’d allowed a toxic relationship to occur. It feels as though there is no going back.
I feel numb towards my wife but will do my duty and see my children once a month or so.
DEIDRE SAYS: Even when said in jest, some jokes are simply nasty so it’s not surprising you’ve had enough.
Some people try to feel better about themselves by making fun of others.
Your wife may have grown up in a family where mocking others was normal, but she set a bad example to your children who picked up that this was acceptable behaviour.
While it’s understandable that you may not want to salvage your marriage, your children still need you.
It’s important to stay in regular contact with them to support them and let them know you love them.
Please contact familylives.org.uk for advice on staying connected with your children.