I need some help, advice, or reassurance... I'm not sure which though. I'm going to try to keep this as brief as possible but also give the whole story, so I appologize in advance for any excess length and thanks for reading!
I dated Nick since highschool. We got married in June of 2012, after almost 8 years of being together and 6 of them living together. I thought he was perfect for me, even though things weren't perfect between the two of us. We had a very unsatisfying sex life, and he did not want to show any type of affection towards me (ex-he would turn his head when I went to kiss him goodnight, so I'd kiss him on the cheek instead of lips). He was also unwilling to read or take the quiz for the 5 love languages-which I was reading because I was feeling unloved and felt like he may be feeling the same. This was all a few months before we got married. Anyway, I seriously thought about my life, and I thought about my future. I wanted a "forever" with Nick, even if he never changed. He was right for me.
The summer was great, but after school resumed again (I'm a teacher), he seemed grumpy. He never told me why though. He didn't talk to me much and started spending nights out with his co-workers drinking. In November, he told me he was unhappy, and we began marriage counseling. I moved out because the drinking and staying out late didn't cease. Fast forward to February, and he asked for a divorce.
Over New Years, my good friend invited me to her party. She had a close group of friends there, including her brother-in-law and his two best friends. The guys (including her husband) have all known each other since second grade. Austin (one of the guys) asked me if I was single, and I told him no, but that my husband and I were having issues. We didn't talk the rest of the night, I was missing my husband and avoided everyone...
In February, the day Nick asked for the divorce, Austin friended me on facebook. He talked to me a bit and invited me to his birthday party, where my friend would be with the same group of people. My friend and I showed up together. Austin was sitting really close to me and flirting with me. We went back to one of the other friend's house. He was holding my hand (very drunk) and kept asking my friend why she would bring such a beautiful girl to him on his birthday but who was married. I told him that things were looking bad and I thought he was going to ask for a divorce. I told him I was not wanting a relationship, but somehow insinuated that I did want to hook up. I was drunk too... It was time for my friend and her husband to leave and although Austin was begging me to stay with him, I left. He asked for a birthday kiss and so I leaned in but kissed him on the cheek and left.
We talked daily (he initiated) on facebook chat that week. I told him Nick asked for the divorce. My friend had a party at her house on the following Saturday. I went, with the expectation of hooking up with no strings attached. After a few drinks, he asked me for his real birthday kiss. I kissed him, and he used tounge. I was surprised because Nick and I hadn't kissed with tongue since the first few months we were together. I liked it though. We drank a lot, and I was nervous about sleeping with him. He told me we didn't have to do anything I didn't want to do, and reassured me. We did sleep together, and woke up cuddling. We spooned all morning and I was incredibly hungover. He had to go (his friends drove him to the party and were leaving), but didn't want to leave me. He was going to Las Vegas the next morning. Anyway, he texted me every day from his trip, and I picked him up from the airport when he got home on Friday (he came home early to see me aparently).
We've seen each other every weekend since then. He's been telling me he liked me since March. In June I was worried because we never had "the talk" about being exclusive or anything, and I was feeling love towards him. I wasn't sure what we were and didn't want to scare him off. This summer, because school has been out, I've been spending a lot of time at his house. We went to Florida together and stayed at his friend's beach house. We were outside with his friend and his friend's mom at their pool. He (drunkenly) asked me to marry him. He reassured me that I'd get a ring but he didn't have one then. I laughed at him and jumped in the pool. Later that night he was being SUPER SWEET and romantic. I decided I'd tell him I loved him. I was so nervous that I was shaking. I told him I was nervous and wanted to tell him something but it was not an easy thing to say. He said "how will you know if I feel the same way if you don't say it?" And so I told him, in a whisper. His friend walked outside as I said it, and Austin whispered back in my ear that he loved me too.
When we got home a few days later, he asked me to move in with him. We still have some issues to work through (mainly religion... I'm Jewish and he's Baptist and how we should raise our kids) and when I brought the cat for a week, we realized that he's too OCD and clean to have a cat roam his house. Our compromise would be to keep her in the bedroom where my bed and furniture would go. It's a small space though...... and I told him I was not ready to move in but to ask me again in December.
Anyway, sorry the background was so long. I really do love him, and he truly loves me too. He is so affectionate and it makes me feel SO lucky to be with someone like him. Of course, he isn't perfect. He has some quirks that I don't like. Mainly, a very short temper and he's selfish. I am pretty sure that if I really wanted something, he'd do it for me, but we haven't had anything like that come up. He's been working on his anger, and recently I was pretty sure he was going to get mad about something, and he didn't.
How do I know if he's right for me? I love how he treats me, and he is so affectionate and tells me how much he loves me and thinks I'm so pretty. All the things that I need in a relationship, he gives freely (unlike ex...) but I worry that these things stop, and if they do, do I still really love the person that doesn't do these things? With Nick, I did, and I knew it. I jumped head first into the relationship with him. But with Austin it's different. I was only mildly attracted to him in February, and wanted a friends with benefits type situation. I thought that becuase I didn't "like" him like that, I could easily do FWB without getting attached. Well, we're both attached now.... and he wants me to move in and eventually marry him. Anyway, how do I know if that's the right thing for me? I didn't spend much time being "single" and looking around, but I do feel that I had already grieved my marriage between November-February. He makes me happy but I don't feel the head over heels in love thing that I felt with Nick in the beginning. Any advice?