Dear Annie: My husband and I have been married for 26 years. “Cliff” had a midlife crisis after seeing photographs of himself at our daughter’s wedding. I knew he took the aging process hard, and I tried to help him through it. But then I discovered he was seeing another woman. She’s been married three times and has cheated on all of her husbands.
I had an emotional breakdown, which put me in the hospital. Through counseling and supportive friends, I got my life back on track and have accepted the end of my marriage. I filed for divorce, went back to school and changed my career.
Meanwhile, Cliff has put up every roadblock possible. He canceled a settlement hearing and then asked me to reconsider getting divorced – not because he loves me, mind you, but for financial reasons. He did say, however, that he made a huge mistake and realizes how good he had it with me.
Cliff is living with his girlfriend and her two teenage daughters, which he can’t handle. He admits there is no future with her, but is confused. He knows I still love him, but I refuse to share him with another woman.
I don’t believe Cliff is sincere in wanting to be with me. I think it’s about the money. I am scared to start over at 48, but I can do it and hope in time to stop loving him. Taking him back would be throwing away all I’ve gained. But I’m torn. Should I try to save this marriage? – Confused in Indiana
Dear Indiana: Some men who go through a midlife crisis learn to appreciate what they left and return to their very forgiving wives. But Cliff is still living with his girlfriend, which sends a clear message that he is not ready to make a commitment to you and may never be. You have made yourself strong enough to be happy without him. It’s time to let him go.