Medical Questions > Relationships > Broken Hearted Forum

We love each other, but are both married to other people.

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I Married The Wrong Guy, And Now We Are Stuck
My husband of 13 years and I married when we were 20. We had only known each other for 4 months. Neither was in love. He did it more for the tax break and safe sex (according to him) and I did it to get away from my mom. We were for the most part good friends. As you can imagine, the relationship had serious problems from the start. We had a lot of problems with his mother who got us involved in a very terrible mind controlling cult based in India. Because of that cult we didn't finish college as we had planned, but instead moved to his home country of Serbia. I'm from the US. When we moved to Serbia his mother had spent a lot of effort into bad mouthing me. Now, after 7 years, everyone knows how I really am and thinks it was terrible what his mother did, but the first year here was terrible. She managed to convince my husband through the use of the cult that I was demon possessed, and had killed him in a past life. My husband and I had always fought a lot (from both sides), but after moving here it got much worse. He even gave me a black eye one day 6 years ago. Often he would threaten to leave me and has even packed my bags and kicked me out of the house. Three years ago we were going through a good spell, and I had a child. At first things were ok, but after she was born things started to go bad again. Once we were fighting and it got physical, and our daughter fell off the coach. That was the last time it got physical, but he has threatened me from time to time. I don't think he would do it again though as it was never a big problem. Last year I left the cult because of my daughter. My husband also left for reasons of his own. I had only ever been in it because of him, and could not see raising my daughter in it at any cost.
Last summer my husband was thinking about divorcing me, and I found out he had talked about it with his family. I decided I had enough, and was going to leave. At that time I also re-connected with my best friend (who my husband made me break contact with shortly after marriage because he was a guy). My best friend and I met in camp one year as teenagers, and I fell for him from the start. At the time I did not know he also fell for me. But, as we were in camp but lived in different states nothing came of it. Later that year I moved, and we actually ended up going to the same church. As neither of us knew the other one was interested in 'that way' we just let it go, but ended up as best friends. Later on some things came out, but one or the other of us was always in another relationship. As we didn't want to ruin the friendship, which by now had gone on for years and was very strong, we never told each other how we had actually fallen in love with one another.
It turns out we both have been trying to find each other for years. When we did, all this came out the very first night. His marriage is just as bad as mine, but he also has a young daughter at home. It didn't take long for us to start an emotional affair. Out of guilt I told my husband about the affair, and I thought the end was near. However, my husband completely changed and said this affair was the wake up he needed to get on track with himself and be a good husband, and that he wanted to save our marriage. It has been a few months now, and my husband really seems to be trying, but I just don't want him anymore. My best friend's wife is also making efforts to change. She does not know about me, but could sense that her husband was lost to her, so started becoming loving. My best friend and I both feel committed to stay in our marriages. Also, my daughter loves and needs her father and would be torn apart if we divorce. The same goes for my best friends daughter. Plus, if I move to the US it would make child custody a night mare. My best friend is also married to a foreigner, so child custody nightmares on both sides.
We are so in love, now more than ever, and we dream of being together some day. It is so hard. Everything we have together is online. We planned a way to see each other next summer, but now I’m having second thoughts. I feel like we should either work on the marriages and end the affairs, or end the marriages and be together. But I don’t know how to lose by best friend, and I don’t know how to break up two homes. Please, if anyone has been in this situation, please help me.
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First Helper shjh
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replied November 26th, 2009
Sweetie I empathise with you deeply I do. I can't say that I have been in a similar situation but recently a couple of my freinds have. Both have children, both had partners that wanted to re-kindle the passion in each marriage's. They both asked me for advice (seperately I might add :S) and I really couldn't say one way or the other.

In the end I simply layed out the options. You and your friend are quite clearly not going to lose sight of one another so easily and your children are the main priority. It really depends on how you view raising your children seperately and together; if you think they will understand in time why you and your friend have seperated from your partners to be together then there isn't anything really that should stop you being together, on the other hand if you think that the children would want to live with your current partner's for whatever reason could you live with their choice?

In the end my friends got together, and although it has brought alot of dismay amoungst the two families they are happier than ever. Most of their children accept why they are together and think no more of it - they take the view "As long as you're happy.". Of course there are a few that havn't yet come around to the idea of them being together - but the point is that my friends were willing to take the chance on one another.

If you and you're friend are really wanting to be with one another then I say do what will make you happiest. Children are strong and resiliant in this new age and as they grow will learn on their own how complicated relationships can be. They will understand you in time - but don't be scared that they wont love you, you're their mother, no love is greater bonded.

It might not be the simplest answer you hear. But I believe it's the one you need to consider. This life is hard enough to try and smile at, so if you find yourself smiling more with your friend than your husband - I think you've answered your own question.

Hope I've helped sweetie. xx
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replied November 26th, 2009
Thank you so much. This really helped me to see that there might be some hope in this situation after all.
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replied November 26th, 2009
You're very welcome sweeite. Anytime Smile
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replied December 4th, 2009
Just do it. It will be painful, and hard, and you will hear lots of nonsense from all sorts of people, but when the dust settles, what will remain? Two people who love each other.
I married very young, to a completely wrong person, his mother was a nightmare. At some point I realised I had to end it, otherwise I would go mad and this would be no good for my 3 year old daughter. Unlike you, I had nobody to run to, and nobody to love me. It was incredibly hard. I felt I was breaking a home for nothing, no hope, no guarantee that life will ever smile to me and my daughter again.
But I did it. In one year from that point I met a wonderful man. He was a foreigner. So - custody to sort out with my ex husband - and it was really hard.

Anyway, we have been married for 10 years, my daughter is a happy 16 year old, and we have a happy little boy too.

I know you think your situation is harder because there are 2 families involved. But if you think about it, you have a loving person to go to, and support you. I had nobody, and it was probably harder.

And finally, children are happy when their mum is happy. As simple as this.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
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replied December 4th, 2009
Wow, that was hard. Would you please tell me how you eventually sorted through the custody issue?
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replied December 6th, 2009
Extremely eHealthy
Absolutely walk away from this friend. This is a mistake. You don't need to be rescued from the responsibilities you took on in your marriage by some other man. You need to either face up to them and make your marriage work or you need to acknowledge that things have moved past the point of no return and divorce, but some other guy should never be a factor in the success or failure of your marriage.

Additionally you are not deeply in love with some guy you knew in your early teen years who you found on the internet. You are looking for a reason to run away and this guy makes a good one. You don't know him. You don't know how much more of a clean freak he is than you can handle or that his sex drive is unreasonably high compared to what you can deal with, or that his taste in music or television irritates you endlessly. Every practical real-life aspect of this man is a complete mystery to you. In fact the things you cannot stand about your husband are more than likely traits that your male friend has. When you are a single woman, and it is ethical to do so, get to know this man. You are able to be in love with people you know.
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replied June 6th, 2010
I am in your same situation. I used to be so critical about people going through these issues. I was told and taught to put my head down and carry my cross or otherwise I will end it up in hell. The only thing that I can tell you is that in my case we promised the lord to separate because of our children we have prayed over a year already and the pain is unbeareable. Life is too short and I truly believe that the lord do not want unhappy people is you tried enough to do the right thing. For me it is too late, but if I could have any opportunity to go back in time and change my decision I will. I take care of my now quasi ex husband and we have become friends but he is not happy either because I can not give him what he needs. I know my friend is not happy either because we found a way to communicate without talking and I can see he tries hard as well. From time to time I get or I send an email with one or two words which reflects our pain. I still have so many years ahead of me and the depression is going stronger and stronger. My kids notice mommy is not happy so they are not happy either. I do not know if this advice goes against what the lord says. BUT PLEASE, DO WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY...at least do it for me.....Love is something that nobody controls and the lord will understand we are humans and we make mistakes sometimes....
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replied August 28th, 2011
true love never ends
I am the other woman in a relationship.

I knew him before he was married. We used to only be friends who had feelings for each other but never acted on it. We have grown closer and closer through the years. I don't think either one of us intended to fall in love with each other, but I don't think we could have helped it. We resisted temptation for a long time and still do. We have parted ways and have reconnected numerous times to realize that time and distance does not change us.

He is in an unhappy marriage, almost from the very beginning. Because of his belief in his vows under God, he has tried to make it work. He has two very young children; he lives for them. He told his son that he wanted to leave the marriage, and his son told him to stay - so he stays. He stays for his kids.

I love him very much, and I know that he loves me. We are two people who were meant for each other, but life stood in the way. We have been best friends for 17 years. We recently parted ways - for good this time, I think. It was hard to let him go, but I knew that he needed to work on his life alone, and I think I stood in the way of that. I know that I am not the cause of the dysfunction in his marriage, but I also know that I am something: I am the woman that he yearns for, the woman that makes him think that he might not want to return to the house where is wife is and to where his kids are. I am the woman that brings him happiness but also pain because he wants to be with me but he loves his kids.

His kids are an extension of him. Because I love him, I love his kids, too. I never want to be the cause of their pain.

If his marriage can be fixed, and he is happy, I shall be happy for him. If it cannot be remedied, I hope that he has the courage to leave, but know that he did not leave his marriage because of me. I hope that he realizes what he truly deserves in life. I hope that his kids will understand and love him no matter what happens. I hope they realize that daddy deserves to be loved and respected, too.

I don't know what the future holds for him nor I in our separate worlds. When you love someone as much as I loved him, you sacrifice your own happiness for theirs. I let him go because I loved him. He will forever have my heart. If I do not see him again in this life, I pray that there is another life after this - whether that be in heaven or another world. I pray that one day we will be together.
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replied November 3rd, 2011
I am in a similar situation that you described. I don't feel as alone knowing that someone else knows my pain. The only difference is that he has grown stepchildren and a new grandbaby. Also, he now has a disease and is dying, which makes it so terrible that I can't be with him and comfort him. I have let him go so that he can focus on trying to get better & maybe get a transplant. I love him so much and am so unhappy without him.
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replied December 5th, 2011
Omg! I've been looking all day for answers to my situation, and Im going trough the same.

I have known my best friend for 8 years and we know all there is to know about eachother: our likes, dislikes and everything else. We have always been there for eachother, it never failed. Everytime we both went through different relationships in our youth and failed at one, the other was there to brighten the moment. I had fallen for him, but I was too scared of loosing our frienship, so I never said anything. He would always say that the perfect girl for him would have my same characteristics, but I would never get the hint. He had fallen for me too. I never felt this deep feeling about anyone of my relationships before, but still I ignored it and overlooked it. I the time I was through a hard relationship and my boyfriend at the time cheated on me. It was very hard for me, because we were very serious. I needed someone to brighten my moment, but my best friend wasn't there... I came to find out that his ex was pregnant and it was from him... our lifestyle got caught up in other things, we had not spoken for months.... douring that time, i met someone. he was an amazing guy. a christian man and very loving.... i completely forgot about what i felt for my friend. when i finally told him about this new guy, he noticed that it was different. he stated to act weird and I felt something was bothering him, and for the fist time we had an argument. It hurt me, because I expected him to be supportive. I went 6months in thos relationship and he asked me to marry him... i told my friend and asked him if it was the right thing, but he said, I just want you to be happy... a few nights before my wedding, he called and said he needed to tell me something. He poured out his heart to me and said I couldn't do get married. That he loved me. I was very angry because he waited all this time until I find someone great to say this? I promised my life to someone else I couldn't just walk out? So I told he was too late... I got married and it was an amazing first year.. things just started to change. My friend and were still friends but it was very cold distant conversations. i forgot to mention that he married his ex 2months after i got married. he said that he would hope it would make him learn to fall in love with her. after a year, my husband changed. he became controlling and our aguments would sometimes get physical and painfull. i count talk to anyone or go anywhere without him spying on me. It became a nightmare. I don't want to tell my friend, because I knew he would say I told u so. No one believed me because he would be the perfect husband out in public, but at home, I was nothing... I finally told him. And instead of being mean, he lifted my heart and said he syllable loved me and his heart would always belong to me. He wasn't happy either,cue wasn't even sure, his little girl was even his. But sill he chose to be that father without question.4 years have passed since we decided we would wait on eachother. We live 6hours away from eachother, but there has never been any physical contact. We talk on the phone, emailor Facebook. We have the most inocent love for eachother, and it huts that we can't be together.we feel like we have a purpose and commitment in the lives our partners, but its only temporary, because they are not the right people for us. We feel like we r made for eachother.and somehow true love will find a way to make things in our favor. I hope. If it never happens, then I pray that I can atleast find comfort in my heart. Because I have never felt a love this big for someone, and ripping that love away will scar me forever.
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replied September 8th, 2011
That last post brought me to tears...I too love a man that I cannot be with. I have been married 11 years with 2 children, and what I thought was a good marriage was completely tested when I was reunited with my first love after 20 years. I now, for the first time know that true love never ever dies. Us reuniting was through facebook and nothing ever became physical because he is 3000 miles away...but there were intense messages sent back and forth and then there were the phone calls. He told me that he has always loved me. It was like our lives had stood still and we picked up right where we left off all those years ago.

He is not married but in a serious relationship with this girl, his son and her 2 daughters and I do know that he loves her too. We have recently cut off all contact before we headed to paths that we could not fix (his words).

I will always wonder what would have taken place if we had of seen each other....would we be together right now??

I do love him enough to let him go though, I just hope that this inside ache will someday go away and it wont hurt so much.
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replied September 24th, 2011
i am married for 15 years, have 3 wonderful children and a loving husband....almost perfect marriage until i met my ex-boyfriend. i last saw him 15 years ago. we started to exchange text messages and arranged to meet to have the closure we never had before. we were civil at first, both trying to fight the feelings but i guess we were only humans and everything came back again....he told me he never had a serious relationship after we broke up and he just got married last year and the wife works abroad....all the little things from the past he still remembers and i felt sooo different now...i'm inspired and happy....and in love again...i have never felt whole for a long time....i love my family and i'm torn between loving my children and wanting to be with him again
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replied September 26th, 2011
Wow! I don't feel so alone...I can't believe how many people go through the same struggles. I am married 16 yrs (together for 21)...almost half my life. I have loved another man for at least 15 yrs, but I was married and so was he (we still are). Recently we kissed and it was wonderful, but we can't do this... we know it would never work. We have families that we don't want to hurt. I don't feel like I love my husband anymore, there were so many red flags early in our relationship that I ignored due to a very low self esteem. Now looking back makes me almost physically sick in the choice I made.
The other man also have feelings for me and did many years ago but was too intimadated to do anything and I thought he didn't like me. So there we were, liking each other but too afraid.
I am sad now, I feel stuck....this is my life sentence.
My husband did give me the greatest joy of my life, however...my child. Which is why I stay.
God knows my heart and my struggle, I wish I could be happy. I am so tired.
Thanks for reading and letting me get this out.
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replied September 4th, 2012
we really have the same struggles..sad, stuck, a life sentence indeed..for my children's sake, i stayed.
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replied June 18th, 2012
can't be with the love of my life
I've read all your stories, and I also feel less alone as I absorb everything you've shared. While it hurts to think that anyone would know what it's like to feel the way I do, it's oddly helpful to think that others are experiencing similar difficulties and hurdles.

I was an outdoor runner for a while before joining a gym, just so that I could use the treadmills when it was too icy or too hot to run outside. A man came into the gym not long after I signed up there, and the moment I saw him I *knew* something - I felt an amazing shift in myself. He brought in an amazing positive energy with him every time he appeared. He was unconventional, buoyant, and exuded such a beautiful,unstoppable positivity. He was also, by a series of long and winding roads, the most handsome man I'd ever seen. I noticed right away that he didn't wear a ring.
I'd been single for almost five years at this point, and was so wrapped up in a meaningful career pursuit (and so bored by the men that asked me on dates) that I hadn't dated anyone for years. I was well over my last long-term relationship, and ready to try again. But it took me almost a year to get up the nerve to even talk to him, because, although I didn't realize it at first, I was steadily and deeply falling in love with him. Colors seemed brighter whenever he was around. The world seemed to bend slightly out of shape whenever he walked in the door.
We began to talk eventually, and he was fiercely intelligent, playful and engaging. My confidence grew. When I did finally get the nerve to tell him how I felt about him ('simply telling him I favored him, and asking if he favored me), I did it creatively, and crossed my fingers.
He came to me a few days later, out-grinning the Cheshire Cat, and said that he was utterly flattered - I'd never seen him so animated. "I can't take my eyes off you!" he declared happily. "You've always been the most beautiful thing in that gym! And I've been watching you for over a year, too." We discovered we had an uncanny amount of things in common, and in no time were finishing each other's sentences. "And I would have asked you out months ago," he said "But there's one tiny little problem." He looked so pained as he spoke the words "I'm married."
I cried for weeks. He was such a sweet, rare and unprecedented person, and when I told him this, he echoed back the same sentiment to me. At first we tried to be close friends - we were so rocked by how well we got along, by how easy it was to be ourselves. His marriage, he said, was tremendously stressful, and with me he could feel a kindred sense of ease.
He was an open, frisky sort, and I think in the earliest stages of it he might have let himself cheat - we were both a bit out of our minds, but I didn't let it go past a hug, ever. He thanked me for it. It wasn't easy, but I knew I already loved him in a deep and profound way, and I knew if I did really love him, I also loved his wife. I told him openly that I was glad his wife was there for him - I went as far as to say 'you are amazing as just you, but she's helped you to be the incredible man you are'. I told him that I never wanted his marriage to end. I could tell, even as I said this, that my words made him adore and respect me even more than he had before.
"But," he said, "If the world were to change tomorrow we would be more, you and me. A lot more."
We saw each other several times a week for a long time, being avid weight lifters and frequenting the gym at the same time most days. Our friendship grew, and we learned so much about each other. He was protective of me, proud of me, and was a great, influential mentor. Likewise, I was doing things in my life that he admired and wanted to do - things that his wife had shown complete disinterest in. We admitted that just having each other was so deeply helpful - it lifted us up to see each other, and I felt myself loving him more for being faithful, and for surprising me by being such a multifaceted person who also looked up to me.

His wife became jealous of our friendship, even though we only exchanged kind or informative text messages, or saw each other in the gym. He told me that she had complained to him about the fact that he talked about me often. I met her, since she occasionally worked out at the gym too, and I honestly cared for her - I saw myself in her, and understood why she needed him, and why she loved him so much.
He pulled away quite a bit after a while, and I understood why - he could only take things so far - he was protecting the promise he'd made, and protecting me from myself in a way. Even though I never came out and told him how much I loved him, I think he felt it, in the same way we could 'feel' what was happening between us without putting much of it into words. I felt his love for me too, even though I knew it wasn't the kind of love that would overthrow the commitment and love he already had in his life.

I grieved the closeness we'd had at the beginning, but came to understand that perhaps it was better if we stayed further apart. All the same, the love grew. I had never loved someone so much, and in so many ways, as I was loving him. It surprised me every day, how I was changing and growing and becoming stronger. He was, without contest, the most wonderful man I'd ever come to know in all my life - he was everything I'd ever wanted, and much, much more.

At times it was difficult for us to be together - I saw how much he felt for me, and how vulnerable he was when I was near him. I also had moments and periods where he was utterly overpowering, and I could hardly form sentences or walk a straight line. Then there were times when we would talk and look each other in the eye and both feel strong and uplifted, as if we could face any intensity of our feelings and take it on. But the attraction, a deep, wild and passionate attraction, seemed always to be present no matter what.
Eventually I thought that perhaps I should break away from him, because to say that I would wait for him seemed to imply that I hoped his marriage would disintegrate. I decided to go to a new gym instead, and conveniently, a second gym opened in our same franchise, and much nearer to my house. I told him I would probably not see him anymore, and immediately he expressed how much he'd prefer it that I stay at our gym with him.

So I stayed. I love him deeply, and we still talk consistently, openly and enthusiastically. Big things are happening for both of us in life.
Now, aside from the gym he's talked me into doing an athletic league with him - we're even on the same team. When the good days come, I feel so grateful that this amazing, wonderful man has happened to me, and I feel inspired, uplifted and changed forever. Every love is different, and I believe this love, with the many kinds of love within it, is the biggest and most beautiful I've ever experienced, or ever will experience. This is it for me.
When the low places hit, however, I ache for him so terribly. I see him everywhere, and everything reminds me of him. I hear his voice, and hear the wonderful, sweet, kind things he's told me over time. I'm so glad to have the love for him inside me, because it's made everything in my mind and heart and life better, but to have him in my life and not be with him is excruciating.

I haven't yet told him how much I love him - I know if I did I wouldn't lose him - we've built a strong bond, and we understand each other to a depth that other people seem clueless to. All the same, I feel I shouldn't tell him, not while we see each other often. I know he doesn't intend to leave his wife for me, and I don't want him to. I want their love to last, but I also want to keep on loving him, in the ways that are healthy and strong and beneficial to both of us. It's just so hard to do that sometimes.

In the end, our situation isn't going to be forever; next year he's moving far away, and I'm moving away too, at about the same time. I can't bear the thought of us being separated, but maybe by then we will have worked through more of our feelings, and perhaps by then we can talk about all we've been through, and decide where to go from there. For now, I simply try to embrace the beautiful, enlightening aspects of the love I know I have from him, and try to learn from, and nurture and come to better understand the love I will always feel for him.
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replied December 2nd, 2014
I relate to all these stories, though mine is a little different. I have been married for 15 years now. I had a difficult childhood, a very low self-esteem. I met my husband, he loved me, and made me feel safe. I fell in love with him too. There were things I didn't like, but thought that if I loved him enough they would change. I am a Christian and was when we married. He was not, he also drank a lot, but he was not abusive in any manner. I told him that I worried about his drinking if we were to ever have children, and he said when they got old enough to know what was going on that he would try to stop. I talked to him enough about God, and my beliefs that he now says he is a Christian. He still drinks though. My kids are now starting to ask questions about why he drinks so much. He drinks a 12 pck a night, and he is still not abusive, but he is absent. He may be here with us physically, but emotionally I feel he has been gone for a long time. In difficult times I have needed him, and he isn't there. I have had to deal with many things alone. I have started bringing up that I want him to stop drinking, and it is only causing more problems. I feel done, but he doesn't want the marriage to end. I still love him, but I no longer want to be married to an alcoholic who is never going to change.

Now, the other part of this story. I have always taken care of kids, or worked in the school system for my job. About 10 years ago I met a family through watching their two babies. I have taken care of them ever since. Once the daycare was sold, they offered a place for us to live if I would watch their children in return. We no longer live by them, but I still watch their children during school breaks. The kids love me, and our kids have become like siblings. The kids never want to leave my house. During this time, me and their father have become very close friends. This past year, we have gotten much closer. He has helped me through difficulties in my marriage, and I him. Me and his wife have spent time together as friends also, but are not close. I have been invited to family get togethers, we go to church together, and me and the kids father talk on the phone almost everyday. It has now turned into something beyond friendship. It has not gotten physical but we both want it to. I won't do that though as long as we are married. So here I am, feeling stuck. I have talked to my husband about separating, he comes back with things could be worse. He isn't abusive, he works hard, he doesn't cheat, and he is home when he is not working, and he has a point. I tell him how I worry about how the drinking will affect the kids, he comes back with the fact that they have it a lot better than we did, and that they are happy, why mess that up?! We have built a life together, and that he is in it for the long haul. he doesn't want this to end, but I do.

I don't know what it is exactly that did it, but I no longer want to be married to him. I don't know if it is his drinking that I am fed up with, his emotional absence, or if it is that I have fallen for someone else. Still I am a Christian, and when it comes to my beliefs I question if any of these reasons is enough to break my vows. I am so lost. I don't know what to do. I don't want to leave because of this other man, and I don't want to be the reason his marriage breaks up. If I divorce, I want it to be for good reasons. I don't want to be expecting anything from my friend more than friendship, and I don't to cause additional problems in his marriage. Any advice would be much appreciated.
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