ExH wants to reconcile. I do not. Help.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-19-2013
ExH wants to reconcile. I do not. Help.
Sat, 01-19-2013 - 9:48pm

Hi all. Could use some input. I got divorced last year. It was a mutual decision and an amicable split. Well, now that some time has passed and reality has set in, my exH regrets everything, thinks we acted hastily and wants us to consider putting the work in to reconcile. I have said several times in several different ways that we need to focus on our new "relationship" as coparents and friends. I do not want to hurt him badly since he battles depression. It kills me every time he brings it up and i have to shoot the idea down. It makes me feel like the bad guy that is keeping our family apart. (We have a 4-yr old DD who has adjusted beautifully),

To me, that ship has sailed. Trust is gone. I am also in a serious, commited relationship that is not a rebound. this is the real deal.

I spoke to him more directly today - telling him we would not be able to reconcile and I am sorry he is feeling incomplete. I do not want him to live in a world  of regret. I honestly want him to be happy. He cried and it kills me to see him so upset. I worry about him.

We were married for almost 10 years. We came to the conclusion together to divorce. We did not even use attorneys - went to mediation.

We just did NOT communicate well. Communication = intimacy. Intimacy = sex. The lack of communication and sex lead to him having an emotional affair in 2009 (I forgave and we tried to move on) and then another affair beginning in 2011 (so I think) that I found out about in 2012. I had told him if it happened again, I was gone. I mean what i say.

Plus he is 9 years older than me. I am just coming into my own in my mid 30s and he is set in his ways in his early 40s. Just old fashioned "growing apart"

How can I help my ex to see that what's done is done and move on without kicking a dog when it's down? I carry guilt and am having trouble fully moving into the next stage of my life. Thank u in advance for any thoughts.

Community Leader
Registered: 01-03-2004
Sun, 01-20-2013 - 6:21am

Two things:

1)You become a "broken record" and keep reinforcing the boundaries, i.e. "No, I do not want to get back together." (repeat as needed)

2)You do NOTHING to give him the impression in the slightest that you don't mean what you say, i.e. no sleeping together, no full body hugs, no dinners together, etc. 

For now you can be coparents, the "friends" will take longer. He needs to go find the help he needs to cope with his new reality. Regret is not an uncommon response for either party in a divorce - even and including the person who initiated it. It's part of the process of mourning the death of your marriage. 

And I'll caution you: You ARE in a rebound relationship. Tread carefully. Your EX seeks to reconcile to heal his wounds; you've jumped into a new "committed" relationship before you've given yourself time to heal (even if you wanted the divorce) and you are laying landmines that may blow up on you in the next 12 months. Tread carefully.

Good luck.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-01-2012
Sun, 01-20-2013 - 6:58pm

You've moved on and he is still stuck. It's not your responsibility to help him get "unstuck". You said he suffers from depression and that might be a key factor. Although you share a daughter, you may want to reduce the amount of contact you have with your EX. When possible, start communicating with him by email, voicemail or text. You should encourage him to seek treatment for the depression and to start dating again.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Sun, 01-20-2013 - 7:11pm

I agree that you just have to keep telling him that you aren't interested in getting back together (give him Taylor Swift's songto listen to).  I think you have to be very firm about this--don't feel guilty, because he did things that caused the end of the marriage anyway--he should be feeling bad that he had an affair.  Now he sees that you are moving on w/o him and he's alone, well of course he'd rather get back together w/ you.  Funny how single life isn't always that great!

When I split from 2nd DH (my idea) he actually said to me, maybe we can get back together when your kids move out--that would have been 6 yrs.  I told him no, we are definitely never getting back together.  He was under the impression that we were only getting divorced cause my kids didn't like him, but that was not true.  So even after he moved out, he'd ask me out to dinner and once in a while I'd go cause I was lonely and he was acting nicer.  Then after about 6 months, I realized that it really wasn't doing him any favors so I stopped going. I never told him directly but he got the hint when I would never be available.  We don't have kids together, so it's easier not to talk to him.  I think w/ your DH, when he comes to get the kids, just have them ready & send them out--try not to get into long conversations, don't do things togethr "as a family" or give him any impression that you might waver.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-06-2003
Wed, 01-23-2013 - 11:44am

I think everyone here has given you some great advice. One small note about the relationship - while others may think it is a rebound, only you know your feelings. Everyone's pacing is different. I am in the same situation - divorced last year and now in a relationship that I've waited my whole life for. I didn't plan on it, I am very independent and was fine on my own. However, the man I'm now with is perfect for me. I'm lucky that my family & friends have been so supportive and not given me any grief over it. They SEE my happiness, something they never saw within me while I was married.

I still care very much for my ex-husband, but I know no matter how much counseling we went to or how much we tried to change, it was not meant to be. We were headed in two different directions and for us to stay together, we would have been compromising our happiness. Life is TOO short for that.

Hang in there!


"You get what you settle for"...

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-24-2007
Tue, 01-29-2013 - 10:50am

I think the thing that struck me about your post was that at the end you asked

"How can I help my ex to see that what's done is done and move on without kicking a dog when it's down? I carry guilt and am having trouble fully moving into the next stage of my life."

IMHO, the answer to that question is "you can't and it isn't your responsibility to do so".  Your behavior should be clear (be wary of sending mixed signals) but it's not your job to help him thru his crisis.  I know as a compassionate human being it is very hard to turn your back on someone you perceive is in need but now is the time to cut the ties.  You have to communicate with him because you share a child but the other posters have excellent points regarding limiting your contact with your XH.  And I agree with the poster who said that friendship may have to wait - the reality is you may never be able to achieve friendship and you may have to accept that functional coparents is a more important goal.

Best of Luck,

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-25-2003
Thu, 02-14-2013 - 11:41am

Just tell your ex in a simple manner. "No, I don't want that".   Don't editorialize or get into judgements.

On a related note, and speaking from my own poor choices and bad judgement - you may think you are in a non-rebound relationship, but I doubt it.  You are feeling very guilty.  Although your daughter may seem well adjusted, you have many years to go before you really will know that to be true.  

Your words indicate to me that you still have a very strong connection with your ex - its a negative connection, but it's a strong connection none the less.

If you are serious with your current beau, take a LONG break, like two years.  Then try again.  Believe me, I know what happens. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-15-2014
Sun, 03-16-2014 - 12:15am

Thank you very much Priest Ajigar for i never thought any thing could make my husband come back to me as his wife again after he broke up with me and left to settle down with another woman who never Knew how we both suffered and share feelings together in USA but thank God today i was lucky to see this great spell caster on a site after seeing a lots of testimony and good work he have done in the lives of people helping them to get their ex,husbands and wife renewing their relationship i was convinced and i contacted him and just in 3 days after the spell was casted my beloved husband came looking for me and right now we are together again and he is taking care of me and the little kids as his responsibilities and family.I advice today if you are looking for a real and powerful spell caster just know that Priest Ajigar is a very powerful and a genuine spell caster and he don't do dark or black magic here is his email(priestajigarspells@live.com)