I married a man 11 years younger than myself. We were friends since he was 18. I went to his wedding to his 1st wife and through his divorce 4 years/ 2 kids after. We became friends with perks after that but nothing serious. He went on to have a 3rd child with a different woman with no intention of having a life with but ended up in a battle for the baby girl. During that time the lawyer told us we needed to get married if he wanted a sure win in the custody. So not even thinking we did. Now married 6 years. Myself never been married nor could have children myself thought this at the time was a great arrangement. I figure I loved him as a friend how hard would it be to move to the next level. We did for a while too but his started his old habits and started to be unfaithful and not even lying about it rather saying well you know how I am. I have grown very attached to the 3 kids. I'm not sure to either just accept this and be happy with how things are or to cut my ties. This would be easy if my love for the kids wasn't as they were my own. We look like we're the picture perfect family to everyone and everyone is happy but I feel at a loss. With my parent passed on these last couple of years I think too much on that til death do us part. I fear once the kids are out of the house so will my husband.
I’m not entirely sure where to start. Getting married for the sake of winning a custody battle is a rocky foundation for a loving marriage. Not that you didn’t have history and a relationship, but it sounds like you weren’t in total agreement about how this marriage would work. You assumed that if he married you, that he’d be a good husband…that he’d actually try. And that’s a fair assumption. But he’s clearly not on the same page. And that’s really unfair and unfortunate, both for you and for the family you share.
Let me say, quite plainly, that no, you should not accept being treated badly. I know you love those kids, but consider what they’ll be learning over the years about relationships by seeing the way he treats you. Kids are not oblivious. They’re little sponges and they know far more about what’s going on the lives of their parents that we’d like them to.
And the fact that your husband is younger is no excuse for his disrespectful behavior. He’s lucky to have you in his life and he’s repaying your kindness to him and his children with a lack of respect and compassion. Maybe he really doesn’t know how to be faithful, but writing off your concerns because “it’s the way he is” is a weak and cowardly way of shirking his responsibilities, some of which include you. You don’t have to accept it and quite frankly, given that you’ve been a parent to his children, you might just have rights to visitation even if you leave.
I know this sounds pretty harsh, and I’m sorry for that. I really do wish you well and I hope you’ll believe me when I say that you deserve a marriage where your husband shows up and gives you 100% (just like you give him). I know that the kids make this really complicated, so you might think about consulting a lawyer to see what your options are, just in case.
It’s okay for you to expect that your husband be faithful. You don’t have to let him get away with the “way that I am” excuse. And if that means having to break up, know that his behavior is really unhealthy for your whole family and there may just be more good in being apart than in being together.
Don't be shy! Say what's on your mind and get a good dose of perspective in return.