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I've been dating a married man for about three years, and he has been married for six. We work together and have formed a great friendship where we depend on each other for happiness. I am now in the early stages of pregnancy; he had been telling me that he was getting divorced, so I stopped taking my birth control. He was understandably a little upset because he didn't want to bring a baby into this situation before getting everything finalized. They are currently living separately. We are all in our 40s and I am financially independent. We both have children, and his are from before his marriage.
He has admitted that the process for the divorce is delayed because she doesn't want it, although I am not going anywhere either. I recently made it clear to her that I'm pregnant and she has started to make our lives a living hell. I barely see him after work now, and she says I'm a home-wrecker – although their relationship was already doomed. (He's been with other women during their relationship and said he should have never gotten married.)
I am very excited about the pregnancy, and once I know it is viable, I will let all of our coworkers know. I would like to plan things, for him to come to doctors visits, etc. But he has been too stressed to think about anything and is very short with me. I must admit that I do worry about how my kids will relate to me if he is still married for too long. How can I make them understand that the situation is complicated and unique? How do I get my boyfriend to understand where I'm coming from so that he stops being so evasive and speeds up the process? How long will it take if she refuses?
I can't tell you how to approach your children about this. It's not that kind of column.
The thing I know, though, is that this man and his wife are not going to prioritize your timeline over their own. You keep taking big next steps without any guarantee that anyone wants to join you.
You want a partner who can fully commit and share important moments, but that's not who you chose. You fell for a married man who waited years before doing the work to leave his wife. He's on his own schedule. With so many of his actions and choices, he makes that clear.
You ask how you can make your boyfriend understand where you're coming from – how you can get him to speed up the process of this divorce. But the paperwork is only part of the problem. He might not be ready to go from being someone else's husband (and your boyfriend) to being your all-in, 100-percent committed life partner. I don't get the sense that he's signed up for that at all.
That's why you should talk to him about what he wants right now. Let's say the divorce becomes final. Would he live with you? See you more often? How does he want things to change? You've been plowing ahead with your new life together, but he hasn't caught up. It's time to talk about why.
Readers? Any way to speed this up? And what are they speeding to?