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Possible end of line - Carers UK Forum

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For issues specific to caring for someone with mental ill health.
Hi all,l have been reading many fellow carers forums for years and never posted myself,but found some comfort and support in all of your replies,thankyou!!

But this time it's different and l need a hug!!
I will briefly give you my history to date and l apologise if it's too long.

My husband was diagnosed with Chiari Malformation which after a complicated brain operation,14 years ago,left him with many problems,mental illness being just one of them.He courageously fort through many problems and came out the other side,teaching himself to walk,eat,talk ect.
In 2009 we moved to France which he was over the moon with,because we brought a barn to do up,so it gave him something to keep himself occupied.
We have two brilliant kids,who have been there to help and support all through this time.
He has always been a firey person even before his illness and when ever we argued(which wasn't often) he would threaten to leave.But obviously with his illness this has got worse.l have been called many things and threatened many times(all verbal).l have always said that if he hit any of us we would leave!!
Two years ago he was diagnosed with a pituitary gland tumour,which once again he has beaten and it is now only a size of a pea and he was given a good bill of health(as good as it's going to get for him).
After the hospital appointment he has informed me that he doesn't want to be with me,(which as l said earlier happens often),but this time he was too calm and collected and he has now informed a few friends of his intentions,which he has never done before.
He is planning on staying with a neighbour for the next few weeks and then wants us all to play happy families at a family wedding,then he will tell them of the split afterwards!!!
I still and always have loved him dearly,but he doesn't see it and wants more.In his words"someone who cares and looks up to him".
He wants the little quiet girl who would do everything he wished,well after nearly 25 years of marriage(anniversary in the 24th of this month) and 14 years of intense caring ,l am not that quiet little girl.l am not anyway loud or firey and people still say I'm quiet ,especially next to him!!
He would normally go into depression mode after an episode of verbal abuse and threats,but this time he hasn't and is normal.
I feel so hurt by it all,but l can't bring myself to beg him to stay this time.
Myself and the kids(18 and 14 now) l feel have had enough and as hard as it is l think he needs to go.Hopefully he will find what he thinks is out there!!!
Thankyou for reading my long rant.
Marriage is a two way relationship. What are you getting from him? It doesn't sound like you are being loved, honoured, cherished. There's nothing in the marriage vows about having to be a verbal punchbag. He doesn't love you any more, as you say he really wants an obedient slave!
I once visited someone, in the early seventies, who told me it was going to be her Golden Wedding soon. I was young, in love, newly married. I said "how wonderful", to which she replied "Is it? I've been married to THAT for 50 years"! She must have been married in the 20's when divorce wasn't normal. Clearly they couldn't stand each other, but stayed together because that was what they were expected to do. I went home and told my husband, said that if he ever felt like that, to let me know and we would go our separate ways. Two lives full of unhappiness.
Think how you might feel when you are at the end of your life if you stay, if you go.
Think how your kids will look back too.
Then find a counsellor to confide in and support you through the process. Don't waste your life.
Yes, it does sound like the end of the line....

To be honest, if you look at it this way, he has given you the perfect 'out'.....ie, HE has chosen to end the marriage. Had you been the one to do so, at any time previously, you would have felt guilty for 'abandoning' him. But now you can walk away totally guilt free. And that is really something to be appreciative of!

All that said, of course it will hurt like crazy that after all your years and years and years of devotion, THIS is your reward? That he tells you he's finished with you?

If you feel angry at him, be angry! He deserves some anger from you! (He'll get it from his kids, don't worry - kids are very 'upfront' about a parent who does the dirt on the other one!)

What your husband is after is probably the following - someone who is not his 'nurse' (ie, now that he feels 'better'), someone who is a male fantasy of female subservience to 'big him up' in his own estimation, and, of course, that drearily familiar middle aged lust for 'young flesh' (as if!).

Personally, I would grab his intention to leave you with both hands! He is not 'abandoning' you - he is FREEING you.

Yes, you'll have a horrible period of readjustment, and roller-coaster of emotions, but you just grab your own life back right now, with both those hands of yours, that have spent decades in the service of another man.

Your time is now! You know it inside, and so do your children!

DO NOT LET YOUR HUSBAND CHANGE HIS MIND! So go now, while he thinks he can help himself to another docile partner! (AND NEVER TAKE HIM BACK!)
You need to sort money as a priority - make sure you get your fair dues.
Thankyou for your replies!!
Jenny l have considered many of the possible financial "dues",l only will ask for my fair amount !!
He can be extremely loving and we tell each other nearly every day that we love each other,but as l have read many times on this sight,he is a jeckyl and Hyde and can turn within a second,for no apparent reason,just might be something that the kids or myself has said that he doesn't like.
I have ask him to please see someone to help with his anger,but he refuses.
Myself and my eldest child (who has also suffered with depression for the past year,mainly due to his home life,with a father who doesn't believe him) actually had to force him to see a physiotherapist,he went once and then said he wasn't going to go again.That one time was only if l went to marriage counselling,which he then refused to go to when mentioned afterwards and now that he wants to split up it's my fault because l didn't book an appointment with a marriage counsellor!!
I haven't closed the doors yet,but l will not allow him back without many changes and promises in place,which if broken will only end in splitting for good. :( :(
As per normal it's me that has to change,according to him,but l have two wonderful kids who have tried to talk with him this morning and have both said that it is him that needs to sort his life out and work out what he wants!!
Your children are seeing things very clearly - so go by what they say. They want the best for YOU - and, to be frank, the best for them.

I'm not saying that love has ended between you and your husband, but the time has come for it to be 'separated' love - ie, you need to live apart, with your own lives, and maybe, if neither of you meet anyone else, then yes, the affection you still feel for each other can continue, and you can 'socialise' if you see what I mean, but you MUST have a life now 'free' of him.

The absolutely priority in your life is your children - all mums know that, and they have endured a lot. They need to have a happy, stable life now - and that is WITHOUT the 'storm' that is their troubled (and troubling!) dad.

For their sakes, move into your own place, split things fairly indeed, and even if you are poorer, you will be happier - and so will your children.

Let your husband follow his own intents, and whether he finds his 'adoring young wife' (!!!!!) or not, he can't go back to what he had - and spoiled - with you. you've given him quite enough chances - he has refused to change, or even to meet you half way. The problem is HIS - and indeed HIM.

Find your own new happiness, and really, really make the most of these years with your two children, who are fast growing up! For their sakes, don't delay.
Thankyou Jenny,
I have had a wonderful talk with my children today and by the end l felt a weight lifted,l know what l need to do to make their lives better.
I wish now that l had the courage to get out earlier for the sake of the kids,but l kept thinking l was doing the best thing for all of us.
It's a huge decision to make, you know now that you tried absolutely everything possible to avoid leaving. It will be much easier in the next few months if you have a counsellor to support you. I'm generally regarded as being very resilient, capable and confident, but I'm now widowed. My husband and I used to talk over everything together, and I really miss that. When my mum was dying, and I had lots of problems with my son with learning difficulties, my counsellor was a huge help. Having someone to "offload" to who is not personally involved is really helpful, and we would focus on what needed to be done sooner, and what could wait until later. When things were really bad I saw her every week, now it's just once or twice a year.
Initially I was referred to a counsellor by a Carers Support Worker, unfortunately I wasn't told that there were a set number of sessions, or that the counsellor would leave in a few months! It took me a long time to trust him and share my feelings that had been bottled up for a long time. Just as things were really helping, the counselling stopped!! So the person I see now, Helen, was recommended by my GP, it costs £30 a session. Every area seems to work differently, so start by asking your GP what is available free locally in your area. It might help to work towards a goal, maybe "settled in our new home by Christmas"? However, I suggest you take legal advice as soon as possible. As you have children, it might be that you stay in the family home, and he is the one to move out.
Hi bowlingbun,
It is my husband who has decided to leave and move out!!

I have already thought about a councillor,my son who now suffers with depression (mainly due to the problems at home and the way he has also been treated by his father) has a councillor and hopefully l can see him.
The only problem here is that I'm in France and you have to pay for your medical consultants,but l will find a way.

My sister also has a husband with bipolar and they separated at Easter,she has described the grieving process as if it's a bereavement,but you still see them from time to time!!
When l told my husband about my sister splitting up,his first words was "bet you wished it was you".

He needs time to work out what it is he wants in life and if it's not me then so be it.l know l have tried my best and l will be fine.
My boys will still see my husband that will never change and hopefully out of the home environment he will be more of a happier dad for them!!!
My sister in law divorced, and I was widowed.
I'm sure that divorce is more difficult in many ways, because you get less sympathy that a widow, and they are still around.
However, at least your boys will still have the opportunity IF they want to, to see their dad. We all miss him every day.

Would it help to say to your OH that you and the boys agree with him, it would be best for him to move out, and then agree a definite date with him?

Will you stay in France? Is that going to create more problems for you?

I wish you well, it's going to be a really tough year, an emotional roller coaster. Hopefully now you have all agreed that it's the right thing the atmosphere in the house will gradually improve. Don't look too far ahead at the moment, allow yourself a period of "treading water" once he has gone while you adjust to your new situation.