My husband dropped a bomb at me this morning. He wants to leave. He said that he is unhappy, that we are uncompatible, that we should not have got married 4 years ago (after 3 years of dating). He said that he had doubts then but that he was too scared to call it off. He told me that he doesn't love me as a wife, but loves me as a mother of his children. He said that with me he can't be the man he is supposed to be, whatever that means. He said that we are divided because of my faith, and that he has no interest in it. (This is not news to me. I never expected him to convert, just left it up to God and decided to marry him without trying to convert him. He was raised protestant but now has no faith. We married in the Catholic church. Sometimes he goes to mass with us and I always appreciate that. I never realised how much he hates to go. He is very good at hiding his feelings. And now I'm surprised at all of this. Serves me right.)
I know it is common for couples to get caught up in everyday stuff and feel distant from one another, especially when the children are so young. I simply took that as something normal, definitely to work on but not even think about divorce. It turns out he had different ideas on what marriage is and how it should work.
I feel pretty helpless. Actually, I'm in shock. We talked for an hour this morning, and then he left for work. We will talk again when he gets home. We don't have screaming matches so the conversation will be at least amicable. I will probably cry a lot.
What can I say? I have already said that love is more than a feeling - that love is about action and a decision. I kept mentioning the children and how they need to grow up with both of us. (I have seen too many broken homes in my own family and I absolutely dread the very thought.) I said that people can have good, solid marriages even if the person they married is not 'perfect' for them. I said that when we became parents it stopped being about what we want, but about what the children need. I told him I was ready to do anything to make this work. He just said he was sorry and that he couldn't imagine how a marriage can be fixed. Then he asked me if I wanted a hug.
I know people here often talk about marriage councelling (Retro-something). I have no idea what is available here. The culture here is so different and I don't know how that would work for us. There is no way I can suggest talking to a priest, given his attitude towards my faith.
We are going to visit my home country in 2 weeks, and will stay there for 2 weeks. I don't know what to do. Come back here or stay at home for a bit, give him some space and hope that he comes to his senses? If I stay at home I would worry that he would not want us back. If I come back I would worry about him starting to hate me for being around. He says he loves the children and is concerned how our separation would affect them, but to me it seems like he is primarily concerned with himself and his personal hapiness. I have no idea what to expect, I can't figure him out. He sounds serious, he's obviously been thinking about this for a while. I feel like an idiot because I didn't see it coming. Any kind of advice would be most welcome.
I'm sorry for such a long post. Thank you for reading this far. If you have no advice to give, please say a short prayer for my family. The thought about my children growing up without their father terrifies me.