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Is this purely guilt keeping me in the marriage?

I'm new here. Background – I'm a 36 year old woman, my wife is 47. We have a 6 year old son (I'm the biological mother). We've been together for 12 years, married for 8. For the past few years (5 years or so), the marriage's dynamics have changed to where we are more housemates than spouses. We get along very well, and do love each other, but we both acknowledge that the marriage is not what it should be. My wife has a drinking problem, whereas she would binge drink, to the point where she'd pass out. Our son was fortunately too young to understand. We both used to party hard and drink, but I pretty much toned down since before his birth. She refused to admit to having a problem even after I threatened to leave, many times. Her excuse was that we used to get drunk together, and since I don't, I am judging her. Then, last year, I was admitted to a psychiatric hospital for bipolar disorder. A few months prior to this, someone from my past came into the picture, and I realised that I have very strong feelings for her. The pressure of this, combined with other factors, made me crack, and I spent 3 weeks in the hospital. During this time, the other woman broke all contact with me. In the recovery time which followed, I basically forced my wife to see a psychologist, as she has issues from her childhood that she needs to deal with. Only after the doctor told her that she is an alcoholic, did my wife stop drinking alcohol completely. We both have not touched alcohol since September last year. We said, once again, that we will work on our marriage, but we kiss and hug for a few days, then we're back to being just friends. We have not had sex in about 16 months. She now wants to, but I honestly don't feel sexual attraction towards her. In March this year, the other woman contacted me to find out how I was doing, and we started chatting again. The old feelings surfaced again, and I just can not help it. The feelings are mutual. Both my psychologist and psychiatrist have basically said that, based on what I told them, they don't have much hope for our marriage. To be very honest, I haven't had hope for us for some time, and if my wife was to be totally honest, I think she would agree.

A couple of weeks ago I told my wife that I am seriously considering a divorce. She was heartbroken, and we had long talks about it. At times she realises that it is coming, at other times she is completely in denial and speaks as though there is nothing wrong. We saw a MC, and were going to work on a trial separation, but then I went on a guilt trip and told my wife that we could try again. However, I eventually admitted to her that I was only saying that out of guilt.

We bought a large house in 2011, which we have renovated to our taste, and to make it ours. We have, since then, offered my parents to build a smaller place on our yard/plot. The plans and authorisations to have this done took nearly a year, but we finally have all the paperwork finalised and they can start building immediately. They have retired, and have no income. This is part of the reason why we told them to come and live there. Now, should we divorce, one of us would buy the other one's share of the house. Selling it and splitting the money isn't an option, due to my folks coming to live there. I would be able to buy her out. But I feel incredibly guilty for staying on in the home where we were supposed to grow old in, while she has to move into a smaller place. I am willing to move over to the smaller place once my folks have built it, and have them live in the big house. But still, I feel guilty for her having to be moved from a big place, to something smaller.

I really do love her, but I don't see a future with her anymore. I love her as a great mother and my best friend. I might in time get into a relationship with the other woman. In fact, it is quite likely that we will, but taking things VERY slow

My problem/question/issue is this: how can I stay with my wife only for the sake of our child and guilt? This is really eating me, and it is really not helping with my bipolar

Thanks for reading the long post!


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