First time posting on Reddit. I (53m) am on month five since the wife (51f) said I want a divorce. Two weeks of the darkest place I have ever been, and that includes being in combat (Army vet), the loss of my mother, or getting sober (8 years now). I could barely function, waves of grief that would bring me to my knees. Lots of sleeping. Lots of Journaling.

I had to come to the realization that she wasn't MINE, that I had just gotten to spend 31 years with her. That I was a better man for having her in my life. In fact, two of the best things that ever happened to me, my two sons (27 & 22 now), were a result of the marriage. She was never MINE, and I needed to stop claiming to love her on the condition that she was MINE. If I really loved her as much as I claimed, then I would want the best for her, even if that meant what was best for her was not me. I realized that I needed to stop breaking my own heart, exaggerating my place in somebody else's life, or demanding that they fill a place in mine.

This morning, journaling about the idea of confusing the deep emotional need for connection and the need for physical connection resulting in thinking I'm in love. Am I in love with you, or am I in love with the way you make me feel? Then the question was reframed in my head: do I love who I am able to be when I am that way?

That's a powerful question for me. Is it possible that it's not the other person making me feel that way? It's me fully experiencing a me that I love being? That it's always there and available but just not getting any oxygen? Until someone comes along and serves as a reminder for that part of me to breathe. Which may be why it feels so akin to being alive!