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A Social Marriage

Question:

I am in the process of getting a divorce which was a mutual decision between my husband and myself. We have been married for 13 yrs. We’ve had a “social marriage” (no sex) for the past 5 yrs. I have had several relationships during that time, and I’m not sure whether he had any or not. I am currently involved with a really terrific guy, but today I found out that my ex is dating one of my neighbors. She’s a cancer nurse and treated my ex’s father before he died. I know that she’s a really nice and sweet person, but now my emotions are on a roller coaster ride. I feel very sad and confused about this. I want to feel really happy for him, and am trying to convince myself that I should feel that way, but it’s not working. Why is this so hard for me and why do I feel so hurt? Anyone have any ideas or comments? I need some advice.

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  • ‘Anne’ is the pseudonym for the individual who writes this relationship advice column.
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Answer:

Amazing how our feelings can turn on a dime, isn’t it? You should feel sad and confused because although intellectually, you’ve let the marriage and your relationship with your husband go, emotionally, you haven’t yet. The feelings you are feeling now are those people often experience during loss. And that’s what’s happening — the realization is finally sinking in, emotionally, that you’ve lost him to another woman. You need to understand this and place it in its proper perspective. It was bound to happen sooner or later and eventually, time will allow you to put aside your sadness and continue moving on in your own life. Sometimes, we simply make mistakes in our lives. We shouldn’t be sad we do so, but we should try and learn something from them. I hope you’ll take something away from all of this and be able to make your next relationship all that much stronger. Hope that helps, – Anne

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