I’ve been thinking a lot about my marriage over the last few months, mainly due to my own behaviour with regards to Rob, but it has made me contemplate how I’ve got to where I am. I think the truth is that emotionally I’ve been gone for a while. I’ve buried my head in the sand and just kept plodding on with daily life. Tom has been a bit quiet on the work front lately so we have had opportunities to spend some time together just the two of us while James is at school. To be honest I can take it or leave. I’m just as happy to be on my own than in his company. I know married life isn’t day after day of blissful happiness as fairytales suggest, but apart from my birthday and a day at the seaside last autumn, I’m struggling to find any great days in my memories of the last year. I can remember twice as many horrible days and the rest must have been mediocre. Maybe I’m being too negative and that’s why I can remember the bad days more. Maybe that’s my problem, that I can forgive all too easily but I can’t forget.
We went through a bad patch 9 years ago where I was really struggling and wondering if I should leave Tom. We had just moved house and although he’d often said he didn’t want children, I thought he had changed his mind as he had instigated the move to a house which, in my opinion, was more suitable for children. He said some quite hurtful things to me over that period and he had some angry episodes. A lot of it was down to his depression and things improved after he saw his GP and had his medication altered. At the time it felt that every time I tried to make an effort, it made things worse. Eventually, we got back on track, but, if I’m completely honest, I don’t think I’ve felt the same since then.
How do couples manage to stay married for 40, 50 or even 60 years? Do they truly still love each other after all that time or are they just happy to plod along in denial as admitting they would be happier apart would require the effort and strain of actually doing something about it?