My wife of 8 years is seeking a separation and likley a divorce thereafter. The reason she has indicted is a lack of trust between ourselves. We have a 4-year old daughter with type 1 diabetes. I foretunately work from home most of the time and I am able to watch our daughter until my wife returns home from her work. My wife works 2 10-hour days a week. Although my wife has advanced degrees and I simply have a bachelors degree, I make quite a bit more than my wife. If my wife chooses to go back to work full time (instead of half-time), I still would make quite a bit more than my wife. The child support calculation seems pretty stragihtforward, but alimony seems much more cloudy. We moved to NC originally unmarried when my wife was pursuring her PhD. During her 3 years of school, I supported her for 1.5 years as an unmarried partner and 1.5 years as a married partner. She did receive a stipen but she could not live on this money unless I supported her. During our recent turmoil times, she has become close to a male friend and recently spent 75 hours on the phone as well as hundreds of text message over a 4 week period that I was able to check. My wife admits a strong emotional attachment to this person, but claims that she is not sexually involved with this person. My wife is claiming that this person is simply giving her emotional support during our strained relationship.
My main question is about alimony if we move forward with a separation and divorce. I read that supporting her towards her educational advancement lessens the case for alimony. In addition, her emotional attachment to this other man could potentially be deemed as an alienation of affection which I believe impats alimony also. However, our difference in salary seems to point towards alimony. Can you give me some advice on what to expect and how I would move forward legally? If I had to pay alimony, how long would this last? I have indicated that I am not moving from our home unless we have an agreed separation agreement. My wife is the one who is anxious in proceeding with the separation.