My wife and I have been having marital problems and have been in counseling to deal with them. I thought we were making progress, when she informed me that there is someone at work she is interested in, and he is interested in her, too. She told me she could not be certain that she wanted to commit to our marriage until she had the opportunity to see where things could go with this other man. She then asked me for permission to have an affair with him.
Tazi, I was stunned. I did not know what to say. I told her that I did not want to say yes; I love her and want her to stay with me and to honor our marital vows. I asked her what she would do if I said “NO” and she responded that she would probably sow her wild oats anyway. She then accused me of being selfish and wanting to keep her in a union that she was not certain she wanted to stay in. She has now been staying out late and when she does come home she goes straight to bed and goes to sleep. There is no communication between us and I feel like my marriage is ending in spite of all I have done to try and keep it together.
Tazi, can you offer any suggestions on how to save my marriage? My wife is refusing to return to counseling, saying it will do us no good until I accept the fact that she needs to work things out in her own way.
You have my deepest sympathies on the breakdown of your marriage. You have tried all that you can do to repair the damage; open lines of communication; and rekindle the spark between you and your wife, but she needs to work on doing the same. A marriage cannot work when only one member of it is actively working towards keeping it together. This is a sad fact that you may have to face.
From what you write, it sounds like your wife wants the freedom that comes with being a single woman with the security that comes with being married. She cannot have it both ways, and I believe that she knows this, too, which is why she is trying to guilt you into seeing her as the wronged party. Your choices are difficult, but unless you take action your inaction will allow your wife to call all of the shots.
Why you would want to stay with someone who has openly expressed a desire to cheat is beyond both my understanding and my ability to counsel, so I urge you continue to go to marriage counseling by yourself; leaving the door open for your wife to join you if/when she is ready. Your counselor will help you to deal with the overwhelming emotional stress you must be feeling, as well as the feelings of anger, betrayal, and loneliness. At this point, you must make the decision for yourself as to whether or not you wish to stay in this marriage or have it legally dissolved.
Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.