I brought the children to Italy the last weekend of October and I flew back late on monday while they stayed with my parents till the following thursday. I had a super time, talked a lot with my sister and my best friend and things became even clearer.
I was not set on having a "talk" as such but it somehow happened and there was the right occasion. It started with Mike coming to pick me up at the airport. This would not be too unusual but the fact that he parked the car and actually came inside the terminal definitely was. I thanked him and commented that it was unusual and he said "really?". Yes, really.
We drove into work together and I started asking some questions about his work and the move to the UK and he was yet again completely disengaged on all fronts. So I thought I could not let the opportunity go by and really opened up my soul about how I felt and how little supported I have been feeling all along. He was very quiet. We (I) talked about feelings and emotions, and how I don't feel loved at all, I reported several examples throughout the years and he could only agree that this and that was really not a nice thing to say/do. We talked some more in the evening, I made clear that I don't want to break up the family but I feel very much trapped in a situation where I am alone in most of the important decisions, that I am the one pulling us everywhere, that I don't see him having much of an aspiration for himself in just about anything that goes on. I asked him what does he want for himself and he didn't know. He was clearly shaken and I felt this huge relief of finally having told him. The main points were the lack of sharing thoughts and feelings, the really just having sex was what made us different from the rest of the people we know, and our very different understanding of loving. I don't feel at all we are partners.
A couple of days went by with little conversation of any relevance, the children came back, my parents were here for a few days so not much happening.
Then he emailed me one day last week saying he was barely keeping it together and could we talk some more. So we did of course, I'm never the one that doesn't want to talk. Again it felt like I was the only one talking but I suppose he just wanted to understand more how I felt. In the end it was clear that he missed more the fact that I was no longer affectionate and I explained that I have no problem being affectionate, but not sexual because I can hardly have sex with someone I feel doesn't get me much at all. He accepted that I think. He asked me what I would have done if we had no children, would I have left him? I pointed out I clearly have a very poor track record in the way I choose partners, but that probably I still would have tried to talk to him and get him to at least understand how I feel. I don't know if I can bring back any feelings other than deep family love (but not like a brother, he asked that, no it's much more than that).
Since then he suddenly found a new enthusiasm about the move (he is looking for schools for the children, jobs etc) and went back running. I'm glad for him, I hope he is not doing it just for me.