Seeking expert testimony is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective.
I believe that I can help.
I am sorry about your devastating loss. You truly loved this man to have endured him as an alcoholic for so many years and helping him when he was down and out, and being so faithful to him when others might have dumped him.
He has shown his true nature: lack of character, faithlessness, and total lack of empathy.
This is not normal behaviour and is almost sociopathic (meaning his inability to have empathy for you nor care about your feelings but only about his own desires).
What you are suffering from is grief, which is a form of depression. Yours has carried on for about 7 months already, and at a certain point this normal process begins to become a mood disorder of depression.
You have to make a conscious effort to move past this relationship. You are holding on to a hopeless situation. If he had died it would have been easier for you to move past this because you would have not doubts about his returning. For you, there is hope, at least unconsciously.
You are only 57 years old and have a life ahead of you which you must get out and live. You must eat well, get out and exercise (walk, etc.) every day, get plenty of sunshine, and do more with friends and family.
You can join an online dating service and begin slowly trying to meet someone with whom to start a new friendship.
Your husband was not the ideal person; he is flawed in character and is an addictive personality.
If you distract yourself, keep active, and tell yourself every day that he is gone for good and you will make a better life without him, then you actually will make a better life, without all the drama of the past.
Yes, it is hard to break a bond of 39 years, but it can be done. He has betrayed you and stabbed you in the back and you must see him for what he is. You need to see that he has done you a favour in an odd sense, by allowing you to start the next and better chapter of your life.
You are a wonderful, faithful, and patient woman and you deserve much better than you received.
You cannot patiently wait for a man who will never return. If by chance he does, then you will never be able to trust him again, and he will no that he can abuse you again in the same way - and he will be looking for other women as he was before.
Please allow me to recommend the following book for you. It has been very effective for many of my clients who have been in a similar situation and found it hard to get past their broken relationship:
There is so much great advice in this book. Susan Elliott will become your best friend and guide you into a new and happier life.
I wish you the wisdom and courage to move forward with your life, starting right now, and I shall keep you in my prayers toward that end.
May God help to guide and protect you. Amen.
Elliott, MAE, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC