I've been there. There is so much joy and so much pain.
What I learned is that you can "love" someone, but be "in love" with someone else.
If the person you are with leaves you feeling unloved, is distant, and non-communicative, not to mention, if they "use" you sexually, but there is no real intimacy, you are eventually going to become extremely unhappy and unfulfilled. You will no doubt still love that person because of the connection and the past, but you will long for things they cannot posibly give you.
In my situation, I was so torn. Finally, I did begin to see someone else, someone whom I thought was my true soul mate. There was no sexual intimacy between us until I left, but there was a connection beyond anything I'd ever known. I thought this would wake my husband up. It didn't and it just compounded the circumstances. I couldn't live that kind of life. When I left and began a relationship with this other person, I was very nieve and very "needy". This person told me that he loved me. He drew my son into everything as well, and he told some of my family that he intended to marry me. By that time we were enjoying wonderful fulfilling sex. Then I learned that this person had lied when he told me he was "separated", and that he was very much married. I was crushed. I learned a lesson. That's the way life is. We learn through our mistakes.
In my first marriage I tried so hard to be what my husband wanted. I gave my all to him. He took advantage of me and treated me very badly. Yet, because of being a JW, and learning submissive behavior from my mom, I took it all. After a while I even thought I deserved it.
I was faithfull to my first husband until I left him, but when I left my heart was broken beyond repair. Even then, I still loved him, still cared about him. But, I knew it was over between us. I gave him the freedom he had already "taken".
Then what did he do? He killed himself a year later. In his mind, suicide was the only answer. He had told me a few days prior that he didn't want me to be labeled a "divorced woman". He also told me that he had loved me "the best he could", which seem such a cop out. He wanted to know why I was still so kind to him, that he could hardly bare it. He wanted me to scream at him I guess. I was too hurt to even do that.
I am remarried now, going on nineteen years. I still love my first husband. There will always be a place in my heart for him. But this love is not the kind of love I have for my present mate. And the guy who I thought was my "soul mate", well he really wasn't. A soulmate does not hurt someone in the way he hurt me. In this marriage, our relationship and commitment to each other far exceeds any emotional ties to the past. We have an enduring love that neither of us take for granted.
Trying to maintain a relationship with one person, while also trying to carry on a relationship with another is self-defeating. It isn't fair to the one your with, nor to the other person. It will cause you such grief that life will almost be unbarable. How can you completely give yourself to one person, when there is another one in the picture? Someone is getting cheated.
Well, that's my two cents worth.