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'AITA for asking for separation after my wife told me to get over the loss of my friend?' UPDATED

'AITA for asking for separation after my wife told me to get over the loss of my friend?' UPDATED

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Grief is difficult to move through, and sometimes, it's even more difficult to navigate someone else's grief.

"AITA for asking for separation after my wife told me to get over the loss of my friend?"

My friend unexpectedly lost her life in car crash 5 months ago. I’ve known her since childhood, practically since we were babies, because her father and my father were best friends since college. So we were pretty close friends our entire life. I married my wife 6 years ago, and we have 2 children. Our marriage was pretty amazing till my friend’s death 5 months ago.

I will admit it felt like a hole had been pierced in my heart. I was asked to speak at her funeral because I was considered her best friend, and I couldn’t say anything and just teared up. My wife helped me a lot through my grieving process, I also started seeing an online grief counselor who has helped me a lot. I was really thankful for my wife for being there for me while I was dealing with the grief.

It has been 5 months, and I am still grieving. My counselor said there was no right amount of time to get over grief, and it was important that I was allowed time to work through it. Over these past 5 months, there are times when I just zone out and feel guilty, especially when I’m having a romantic moment with my wife, and my wife does sense it.

Last night, we were cuddling and having another romantic moment while I was massaging her hands. We were both extremely drunk, and I zoned out again till I was brought back to reality by my wife. My wife then casually asked when I would get over her loss, and that it wasn’t like my friend was my soulmate.

When she said the word soulmate, I broke down completely again, and my wife immediately apologized and said she shouldn’t have said what she said. I then asked my wife if we could temporarily separate till I am more in tune with my feelings and am better able to handle my grief, which then caused my wife to cry a lot.

I am sober now, but am still considering temporary separation, not a divorce. I would still be in a co parenting relationship with my wife. Just being with my wife right now is causing me more grief even though it is not her fault at all. I think a separation might potentially help with my grief.

The internet kept it honest in the comments.

IcyPaleontologist123 wrote:

Yeah...gonna be hard to come back from that one. Grieving your friend is understandable, but now it's starting to interfere with parts of your life that your friend wasn't part of at all. I'm sure your wife is wondering why the heck you're thinking of this friend while being romantic with her. Were you doing this all along?

If you need a separation to work on your mental health, then you need it, but you aren't the only one with agency in this situation. It may be less temporary than you expect once your wife gets over the shock and sadness of the request. I'd definitely be consulting a lawyer at this point in her shoes.

Lola-the-showgirl wrote:

"When she said the word soulmate, I broke down completely again"

Your wife is a saint because if my husband started sobbing over the use of "soulmate" in relation to another woman, I'd be done.

Were you in love with her or something? Because that's what it sounds like. Just know that everyone, even saints, have their limits, asking for a separation will likely be hers.

Dell_Hell wrote:

This would kill your marriage my friend.

Are you ready to be mourning the death of your marriage too?

Because that's where you're headed.

HistoricalHat3054 wrote:

If my husband zoned out thinking about his late female friend when we were being romantic I would eventually begin to think my husband had romantic feelings for his late friend. I think that is where her question came from. Not "get over it already."

Asking for a separation for an unknown length of time is huge and will most likely cause your wife to have doubts about your relationship. You need to talk to your therapist about your thoughts.

Happyforyour1998 wrote:

Dealing with a grieving spouse takes a huge emotional toll. My husband grieved his uncle for over a year close to two and you feel like your spouse is gone because they are not mentally present. You have to baby them and be understanding while you feel abandoned and alone in your marriage. Your wife has been very supportive to endure you grieving another woman for 5 months.

Yes you are entitled to grieve as long as you need but she’s entitled to be in a marriage with a present partner. The damage you did to your marriage asking for a break may be irreversible. It’s not gonna be a separation. It’s gonna be a divorce for her. You are asking way too much. Do you have a romantic history with this friend?

PuffPuffPass16 wrote:

I bet he does, it explains why he breaks down when being romantic with his Wife. Why would you equate romantic night with your wife to your friend's death? I fully believe this separation is going to lead to divorce. It may not, but any woman who knows her worth won’t wait around for their husband to be magically OK again. That could be months, years or never.

The next day, OP shared an update.

Thanks guys I had a sort of coming to Jesus moment after reading the comments and realized my wife does not deserve how I’ve been treating her the past few months. I have been so self absorbed with sadness and guilt, that I have sort of just forgotten about my wife. It was a moment of weakness on my part.

I apologized to my wife a couple of hours ago for bringing up separation and for how I’ve been behaving the past few months, and she was really happy about the apology and said I had no reason to apologize, and we had a really romantic moment after that. I am still going to start looking for an in-person therapist, as I think it will be beneficial, but I am now going to focus on giving a 100% to my wife.

We only have one life, and we deserve to live it to the fullest, and I will try to my best with my wife and my two children. As far as my friend, we did have extremely strong non-romantic feelings for each other, but I’d rather not get into it too much, as I am now just going focus on my wife and my two children.

The comments kept coming.

russianbonnieblue wrote:

Glad you came to that realization but keep in mind that your wife may still be sensitive about this situation for a while to come. It is easy to accept an apology and act like everything is okay, but doubts come in waves.

Kutleki wrote:

I don't buy that you and your friend didn't have feelings for each other. Your reaction, and now that comment that you don't want to talk about 'non romantic feelings' leads me to believe you're not being entirely honest about this person. Regardless, while your wife has accepted your apology, she's not going to forget your actions.

Technusgirl wrote:

Men are hardly ever just friends with women from my experience too. I think he was very much attracted to her and would bone her given the opportunity.

AegeanBlueA264 responded:

In my early 20s I would’ve fought you on that stance, since I was the girl that always had guy bffs. And then I grew up and all those guys got married and I realized, “huh, yeah, maybe there’s a reason my mom kept telling me men just can’t be friends with women.”

It’s not that either of us would ever do anything, but you don’t want to be the woman who the wife worries about. And 15 years of friendship before she existed is something any normal woman would worry about.

canyonemoon wrote:

Be aware that there will be a lot of conversations with your wife coming up. She's happy and relieved now that you not only dropped that insane threat of yours, but also apologised.

But she's going to remember how you acted, how you reacted to the soulmate comment, and she's going to inquire about those strong "non"-romantic feelings you had for your late friend once the dust settles. And you better have some very good, HONEST, answers to give her.

Hopefully, OP and his wife are able to be honest with eachother about what they need moving forward.

Sources: Reddit
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