Boyfriend still legally married
Asked Dec 12, 2008, 08:32 AM
I've been in a relationship with a 43 year old man (I'm 39) for about a year and we came together out of our own marriages. I was married for 5 years and have been legally separated for almost 11 months. The man I'm with now was married for 16 years and they have a 16 year old daughter. He is still legally married with no sign of a legal separation agreement even being started and he hasn't yet introduced me to his daughter. My ex has moved out of the town that we live in and there is no communication between he and I. My boyfriend's wife and daughter live in the same town we're in, and he visits his daughter at his house a few times a week and his wife calls him often, mostly regarding their daughter.
I have several times over the past year asked about his plans for starting a legal separation. Most often we end up fighting about it because I believe he doesn't want to talk about it. He seems to get defensive and I begin to feel that he's defending his wife and sparing her feelings while sacrificing mine. This week we came head to head on this issue and last night he very clearly said that although he hears me, he is not going to do anything right now, but he also didn't want to do anything 6 months ago. I understand it's Christmas time (which he's planning to spend some time with his daughter and I have no problem with, but it also means he'll be spending time with his wife on Christmas day), and I'm not expecting him to do anything right now. All I've been looking for is a sign that he's going to do this sometime soon (i.e. within the next 6 months) and I'm afraid he won't. He's afraid of losing his daughter once the separation process starts, but he really shouldn't be because his wife is very open to a continued healthy relationship with their daughter. He still financially looks after both of them and I know he will ensure that continues to happen even after a legal separation and divorce.
I know he loves me and I love him, we've talked about getting married someday and starting our own family, but I'm starting to feel disrespected and ignored when it comes to my feelings about this. I get so frustrated when we can't seem to talk about it and at times he becomes accusatory towards me by suggesting that I'm just doing this to try and end our relationship. I'm just looking for comfort and reassurance, but most often I get the opposite.
I'm also concerned that he hasn't introduced me to his daughter, but I understand that if she doesn't want to meet me (and I know his wife doesn't want her to meet me), I will not force him to bring her into our life right now. Maybe he's also not ready for her to meet me?
Am I being unreasonable about this? Do I just need to wait until it happens, no matter how long it takes? I'm just looking for reassurance from him that he will make a solid commitment to me and us, and my concern is growing as more time passes.
I'm starting to feel like I'm being taken advantage of which isn't a good place to be. I need some perspective on this please!