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DP's ex has told him she has cancer.

(463 Posts)
LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 13:06:43

Been with DP for around a year now, he split with his ex about a year before we met. She's had issues letting go, and has made things quite difficult for us. That said, I wish her no ill, and have met her at events a few times, as we work in the same sort of business. She doesn't know we're a couple.

A few weeks ago she told him that she been to the doctor, told she had cancer and that she needed chemo. This week she has told him the three sessions of chemo haven't done anything, that its too far gone for surgery and that she is now terminal.

DP is understandably upset - they were together for a long time, and as much as he is happier not being with her, he still cares about her. He's going to see her tomorrow night to find out exactly what is going on.

I don't really know what to say to him. I don't know how to be there for him without appearing to be interfering, because I don't know her very well, and don't want to appear like I'm suspicious or anything when I ask how she is.

Has anyone got any advice or suggestions as to how to deal with this?

Thanks.

(Have namechanged, by the way, as am quite identifiable from my normal screen name, and want to preserve both of their privacy.)

Helltotheno Tue 06-Nov-12 13:15:18

I guess the thing to do is be as supportive as possible to both of them. Asking how she is would be part of that no?

Is there something else?

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 13:25:48

Not really, no. Its just a position I've never found myself in before. I've supported friends with cancer, I've supported friends who have someone close to them with cancer. But the fact she's the ex puts a slightly different angle on it, I suppose, and I don't know the best way to deal with it.

I guess also, a part me is frightened as I am currently undergoing some medical treatment and test myself, and now feel that I shouldn't tell DP because he doesn't need the extra stress. Don't know quite how to handle that, either.

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 13:34:28

How come's your DP's ex doesn't know you're a couple?

WhoNickedMyName Tue 06-Nov-12 13:36:46

How close are they? Why doesn't she know you're a couple, given that you've been together a year? Do they have kids together?

Flisspaps Tue 06-Nov-12 13:37:33

I think you need to be honest and tell him you are having tests. Surely he isn't her only confidante, and although I'm guessing he's not your sole support either, you are his partner now and I think it only right that he knows.

May I ask why she doesn't know you're a couple? Not suggesting that now is the time to tell her.

I don't wish to be insensitive, and am sorry if it comes over that way, but she is his ex, you are not. Yes, she was an important part of his life, but you've already said she's struggled to let him go - and most people just wouldn't turn to their ex partner at a time like this sad

I think he should go see her, be sympathetic and supportive but IMO he needs to make sure, and make it clear to her, that he's not her main supporter through this.

Portofino Tue 06-Nov-12 13:38:11

"A few weeks ago she told him that she been to the doctor, told she had cancer and that she needed chemo. This week she has told him the three sessions of chemo haven't done anything, that its too far gone for surgery and that she is now terminal. "

Call me cynical, but isn't this all a bit quick?

Flisspaps Tue 06-Nov-12 13:42:58

Porto that crossed my mind.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 13:43:51

She doesn't know, because there have been threats of suicide in the past, and he is worried about her. He was actually going to tell her... And then this happened.

No they don't have children. She has a teenage daughter from a previous relationship.

Portofino... I'm glad you said that. I admit the thought has been at the back of my head, but I didn't want to say it for fear of being a bitch. She has told big lies in the past in an attempt to get him back, and also to make other people think badly of him. I know she's lied, because she's been caught out. He doesn't know this, I haven't told him, because I don't want to sound like a jealous crazy girlfriend.

However... I am trying to think that if it is true, he is going to need me. And if she is lying (which actually, I really hope she is, as I really don't want her to die, as much as I dislike her) he is also going to need me to support him, not being pointing fingers.

CajaDeLaMemoria Tue 06-Nov-12 13:45:12

Yes, why doesn't she know you are a couple?

It's only right that she is told. She might be expecting more from your DP than he can give, as he is now in a relationship with you. He has moved on, and she might think that he hasn't if she thinks he's been single all that time. I understand not wanting to upset her, but after a year, she needs to know.

The timeline seems very fast, and she hasn't had very much chemo, so the situation could be very bad or it could be that she's struggling to understand the treatment. It's complicated and my granddad got easily confused by what was happening when the chemo started.

But regardless of that, she may well be thinking your partner can offer more than he actually can. She may not want to rely on him so heavily when she knows that he is with someone else, depending on the real nature of their relationship.

You also need to tell him about your tests. You could wait until after he visits her, if you want. He'll cope. It is very unlikely to come down to pulling rank etc, so don't worry. Just tell him that you were holding off speaking to him until he knew what was going on with his ex, but that you are having x tests for x, and would like his accompaniment to appointments/need some support/etc.

But I do think she'll pull away into her own family and friends once she realises your DP isn't single and available.

CajaDeLaMemoria Tue 06-Nov-12 13:48:32

Ah. I suspected that might be the case.

He does need to tell her. Not in a big way - maybe just mentioning you by name casually is likely to be enough. As a matter of priority. Whether she is ill or not, she deserves to know exactly where she stands. If she threatens suicide again, call the samaritans or the police, and give them her address. They'll help her. He can't lead her on forever thinking that he's single and they might be getting back together.

You won't need to point fingers. He'll know from what she says, and how she responds to him not being single.

WhoNickedMyName Tue 06-Nov-12 13:49:56

Well he sounds far too emotionally involved with her.

She is his ex. He needs to remember that.

He should step right back, and she needs to find someone else to give her the level of support she's going to need if her story is true.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 13:50:27

I don't want to leave her without a support network right now, know she has a difficult relationship with her family. I also know that the probability is my tests will come back showing something a lot less serious than cancer. DP knows how my health is up until now, but am considering not telling him if there is any bad news from any of the departments I am currently visiting.

Mine too - but if the OP says that to her DP she's liable to come across as a total cow...

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 13:54:04

I must say, I faintly relieved that some of you seem suspicious too. Stops me feeling quite so horrible about my own thoughts!

Wingedharpy Tue 06-Nov-12 13:55:52

Don't know about the ex-P OP, but just to put a different perspective on the time frame -
a dear friend's partner was diagnosed with cancer approx 5 weeks ago, has had 1 session of chemo and has now been told he is terminally ill so sometimes it can happen very quick.
I agree with others though, she does need to know that he is not a free agent and cannot be at her beck and call. He needs to ensure that he does not get sucked in here otherwise it will be difficult to extracate himself.
She probabaly won't cultivate other support networks if she thinks she has him to rely on.

Just reading your OP, I thought 'chinny beard'. Which might make me a bitch.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 13:59:18

I'm sorry to hear about your friends partner, Winged sad

He has been very good at stepping back from her, but obviously right now he doesn't want to upset her. I don't how many other people she has told. She makes him feel horrendously guilty for not being around all the time, but he has stuck to it.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:00:28

Sorry Chickens, could you expand? I'm having a stupid head day today!!

CajaDeLaMemoria Tue 06-Nov-12 14:00:39

Agreed, Winged.

Your DP is leading her on. He might be doing in with the best intentions, but running to her and not telling her about you isn't helping her. He needs to be very clear and make sure she knows that he has moved on - quickly, so she can build another support network. You might think that she has no-one but that is unlikely to be true.

And even if it was, I'd much rather rely on Macmillian Support and the hospital than an ex who was pretending to be single.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:02:37

Oh - and I should state that they live an hour apart, he lives just down the road from me. She calls and texts him quite frequently but he rarely answers. Goes to see her maybe once every few months after she has guilt tripped him enough. The last few weeks have changed things obviously.

mutny Tue 06-Nov-12 14:04:03

Why is he so involved with her?

is it because she threatens to kill herself?

chicken I haven't heard 'chinney beard' in years. Love it. smile

Crossed my mind reading the OP and then there is the fact that she has manipulated him before.

The thing is OP, if she is lying it will come out.

drizzlecake Tue 06-Nov-12 14:04:19

You need to wait and see what the cancer is she has. And many cancers are recoverable from. Though it might take time.

But don't see the point in keeping secrets.

mutny Tue 06-Nov-12 14:06:52

And many cancers are recoverable from. Though it might take time.

I don't know any terminal cancers that are recoverable.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:07:38

Disagree about leading her on, though trust me I am as frustrated at him for not being honest!! He has made it painfully clear (not just in private either) that they are no longer together, nor will they be getting back together. I think he has told her he has been going on dates, trying to ease her into the idea, and she hasn't handled it very well.

She has a lot of issues though, and to be honest, he could tell her he was getting married next week and she would still be begging him to come back. Its very sad, actually. Its been two years and she still can't accept it.

And... I guess, part of me feels that if she is terminal, then her last weeks or months shouldn't be filled with extra pain. I certainly avoided telling my dear friends bad news when they were dying.

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 14:08:32

She's an ex and they don't have kids together.

It beggars belief why she doesnt' know about you.

Very weird.

Portofino beat me to the punch. I would be awfully suspicious of this, particularly as she "has told big lies in the past in an attempt to get him back". And why, FFS, is he not aware of these past lies?

Sorry, Luminous, I just meant that it didn't ring true. What kind of cancer has she been diagnosed with?

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:10:28

Munty - I know. If she is lying (which I really hope she is, as it would be the lesser of two evils) then he will find out. But in the meantime, DP is facing the possibility of someone who was a major part of his life for a long time dying, so I am trying to focus on that.

It does make me feel like less of a bitch that some of you are raising your eyebrows though!

ProphetOfDoom Tue 06-Nov-12 14:10:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NatashaBee Tue 06-Nov-12 14:13:36

Given the history of lies, I'm also a little suspicious. Could he maybe take her to a doctors appt or something and clarify things? From there, he ca decide how much support he can offer her (and get help from other agencies if necessary), but he does need to come clean about your relationship.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:14:11

Breast cancer.

She doesn't know because she has threatened to kill herself, and when he tried to end their relationship a few years earlier, she did herself some harm. He is frightened for her, and frightened of being the cause of her doing that.

He isn't aware of the lies I know (that several of us know) she has told for several reasons. Firstly because it would just make me look malicious. Secondly because she would deny it, and it would end up being my word against hers, which is a position I don't want to put him in. Thirdly because actually that would be giving her more impact into our relationship than she already has, and I don't want that.

So she has terminal breast cancer? And has only had three sessions of chemo? No radiotherapy? Any biopsies or lumpectomies?

mutny Tue 06-Nov-12 14:16:27

I do see your point OP about him telling her now. It would seem pretty bad to tell her now she is dying.

has he spoken to her parents?

There is no knowing if she is lying. You are not a bitch for doubting. I would say your dp will probably have doubts as well. But he just doesn't say. Just keep that thought to yourself, even if he asks if you think she is lying. Just in case.

Tbh, I would not have put up with this. I have no issue with dh being friends with exs but not with ones that spend their time trying to get back with him and that he is scared to tell about me.

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 14:20:28

I think you've got yourself in a very bizaar situation here.

You do also seem to come second to an ex.

Maybe now is not the time to say anything but just to think whether this relationship is right for you.

ProphetOfDoom Tue 06-Nov-12 14:20:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:21:14

DP said she had told him that the chemo hadn't worked, and it was too far gone for any type of surgery. That's all he knows. He's going to see her to clarify things, and work out what is going on.

I have put up with it because aside from her ocassionally raising issues, things are fantastic. I also have a mental health condition / have friends with severe mental health issues, so maybe I am slightly more patient and understanding on his concern for her than most would be.

Gigondas Tue 06-Nov-12 14:21:19

It's hard to say if true or not as there are so many types of cancer and ways it can progress (I have advanced cancer so I can see that this could be true but equally with amount of tests that they do before you start chemo it would be unusual/unlucky to find out during treatment that cancer was Incurable as its usually indicative before you start).

If she really does have this diagnosis, then Macmillan, hospital Etc will have plenty of support (including counsellers and psychotherapists) to help the ex.

i think that your dp needs to be honest about what support he can offer and that means spelling out that they are no longer in a relationship and you are. If its true (and I agree that there is some Chinny reckon about this grin) then sounds like ex is mixing up old and new problems- by that I mean she is dragging ex she can't let go of into try and help her with her health issues.

And I certainly don't think you should stay quiet about your own issues as you deserve support of your dp .

AmberLeaf Tue 06-Nov-12 14:21:21

It sounds to me like she is lying in some way.

I thought that was what you were going to be posting about when I read this bit;

A few weeks ago she told him that she been to the doctor, told she had cancer and that she needed chemo. This week she has told him the three sessions of chemo haven't done anything, that its too far gone for surgery and that she is now terminal

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:22:29

Thanks, Matilda, I will do. Know from experience how wonderful the work of Macmillian is.

SweetSeraphim Tue 06-Nov-12 14:24:12

My mum is just coming to the end of treatment for breast cancer. She's had 2 lumpectomies, a mastectomy, chemo and radiotherapy. It's taken a good few months for that lot. I thought that there had to be a certain amount of time in between chemo sessions for recovery?

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:24:37

Gigonads, I'm sorry about your cancer, sending love and thanks your way.

SweetSeraphim Tue 06-Nov-12 14:25:58

thanks to all suffering in whichever way from this hateful disease.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:30:17

Amber, as I've said, I am faintly suspicious, but the friends and I have lost to cancer mainly fought long battles before they passed. My Nan died within a few days of it being discovered, having been admitted to hospital for an entirely separate operation. So I do know every case is different.

Gigondas Tue 06-Nov-12 14:39:57

I would agree with your instinct luminous (and thanks for good wishes).

LuminousLaces, I'm sorry but your DP is coming across as a bit pathetic. He stays in touch with an ex of 2 years because she insists. He doesn't tell her he's in a relationship. He can't be told things because he's frightened of/for her, he would have divided loyalties between you and her, or he would think you are being malicious? Really? What a catch!

I think it does him a great disservice to be kept in the dark like this, because it leaves him open to being manipulated (which is what I believe she is doing).

You say that the lies she has told in the past are known to several people, presumably some of these people are known to your partner? I really think you should sit him down and say something along the lines of "I need to talk to you about X. I think she may be trying to manipulate you into getting back with her, through pity. The reason I think this is because she has told lies before, for that reason. Y and Z know about these lies. We kept them from you because we thought it would hurt your feelings. But this is too big, and I think you need to consider that this diagnosis may be another lie."

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:50:30

And if I do that, WhereYouLeftIt, and she dies? How exactly does that make me look? And can you imagine how that would make him feel towards me? It would make me look heartless, malicious, a liar, and just down right cruel.

Because as much as I suspect she might be lying, she might also just be confused or overwhelmed. She might also be telling the truth, and that's the way I need to treat things with DP, because otherwise if she does die, I won't be there to comfort him when he needs me.

Portofino Tue 06-Nov-12 14:55:13

You are not coming across as having a very strong relationship. The ex and what she thinks, says and does seem to hold WAY too much sway here. I would be questioning where I stand here. What if she says something like "I am dying - I need you to be with me" to him.....

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 14:57:36

Why are you so worried about how you will look OP? Why are you so emotionally involved in this woman?

What WhereYouLeftIt said made perfect sense to me.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 14:58:47

Trust me, I am frustrated by the scenario. But if she is telling the truth, I am then guilty of accusing her of something really terrible. I did consider telling him about the lies she has told in the past, but again, if she is dying, then does he really need to be conflicted any more right now?

Whoever said up thread it was bizarre, yes it bloody is. You couldn't write a script like this as no one would believe it.

So you all still think I should tell DP what the doctors say with regard to my own health? What if, in the unlikely event, they tell me I have cancer or something as equally sinister? Is it really fair to burden him with that?

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 14:59:25

You seem to be molly coddling both of these people with the strange dynamics to the point of ridiculousness.

Lougle Tue 06-Nov-12 15:00:47

The dynamics are all wrong here. You've been together 1 year. You are his DP. Yet, it is you that hasn't even told him that you are undergoing tests, and it is her who has told him of her 'diagnosis'.

Why didn't you tell him? Why isn't he asking, if he knows the stuff that has led up to you getting the tests in the first place?

Why hasn't he told her he's moved on? A year - doesn't matter how unstable, she should have known.

Why are you tolerating him 'going to see her'??? Why is he doing it?

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 15:00:49

Fair to burden HIM!

Is this a man you are talking about or a 3 year old?

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:02:32

I'm sure that's how it must look. But we have a very strong relationship. Like I said, this is just a very difficult situation, and I'm not sure how to handle it.

I feel sorry for her, I guess. She hasn't had an easy time of it, and obviously has some mental health issues.

I'm concerned about how I will look because of my own issues. And also I just don't want to add more stress / worry / confusion for DP right now.

diddl Tue 06-Nov-12 15:03:43

"Goes to see her maybe once every few months after she has guilt tripped him enough."

I don´t get that tbh.

Maybe I´m odd, but I have never made an effort to keep in touch with exes.

Been polite when seen each other but that´s it.

Certainly wouldn´t dream of phoning or travelling an hour.

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 15:04:20

Jesus Christ Woman are you a door mat or a martyr?

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:07:13

Lougle, he knows the situation with my health right now. I'm waiting to see two different specialists, one at the end of the month, and one still waiting for an appointment for. The second appointment will be an operation.

Maybe I am molly coddling him, you may have a point there. I am just concerned for his emotional well being. I feel upset after finding out what she has said, and I hardly know the woman, so can't imagine how he must be feeling.

He's coming over tonight, so I may well discuss how I feel with regard to telling him about my own health.

I'm tolerating him going to see her because I don't own him, and meet up with exes who are still friends myself. I also think that if she is telling the truth, she needs someone to lean on right now. I feel secure enough in our relationship not to worry about that being threatening.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:11:56

I'd like to think I'm neither, Phoenix. Just concerned for my DP, struggling with my own issues, and trying not to rock the boat any more than it already is.

Paiviaso Tue 06-Nov-12 15:12:19

Your DP relationship with his ex sounds completely inappropriate, without the cancer entering the situation. Why has this not been an issue?

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 15:16:10

I'd have rocked the boat long ago OP.

"And if I do that, WhereYouLeftIt, and she dies? How exactly does that make me look? And can you imagine how that would make him feel towards me? It would make me look heartless, malicious, a liar, and just down right cruel."

I think you need to start considering the 99.9% likely scenario. If you don't tell him, and she's lying; he will eventually realise that she's lying because she doesn't die (although I'd be waiting for the miraculous recovery to occur). He will be devastated. And how will you look to him then, when he finds out that you knew she had a history of this behaviour, suspected her of doing it again, but still didn't tell him?

Yes, you are mollycoddling him. Is his emotional wellbeing so very fragile that you believe this to be necessary? Why does your emotional wellbeing deserve so much less than his? And, frankly, hers?

drizzlecake Tue 06-Nov-12 15:23:28

If you have tip-toed round the relationship with DP and manipulative ex then this is not the time to make a stand imo. Better wait it out and see how her illness (or not) progresses but make sure DP knows about your health problems and assume he will give support. I wouldn't worry about DP, when people have awful diagnoses you just have to get on with it and help where you can.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:23:29

Because things were actually going okay until she told him she had cancer. He had told her he was seeing people, she'd started to accept it, and he was going to tell her we were together.

Maybe my own mental health experience makes me overly accepting, but I do understand his concern for her, as much as it does piss me off at times.

diddl Tue 06-Nov-12 15:27:01

"He had told her he was seeing people, she'd started to accept it, and he was going to tell her we were together."

But in all honesty, her illness-or not, doesn´t affect that.

If she has cancer, will he stop seeing you??!!

I think it´s odd that he has been with you a year & not told her tbh.

ClippedPhoenix Tue 06-Nov-12 15:27:23

He's slap bang in the middle of two adoring females isn't he.

Viviennemary Tue 06-Nov-12 15:36:32

Why on earth doesn't she know that he has a new partner if they split up 2 years ago. This seems to me very strange indeed. Don't know what to suggest now. Doesn't seem to be any point in upsetting her further at this difficult time by telling her.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:37:00

Maybe tomorrow he'll find out exactly what she has to say (and I do think that a tiny bit of him at least must be suspicious, and that's mainly why he's going), and I guess I'll just have to take it from there.

No, he won't stop seeing me if she is ill, of course not.

IamtheZombie Tue 06-Nov-12 15:37:19

Luminous, I was diagnosed with breast cancer almost exactly a year ago. Let me just tell you about my timeline for diagnosis and treatment.

Late October 2011 - Saw GP who confirmed a palpable lump in my right breast and referred me to the hospital under the 2 week rule.

09 November 2011 - Hospital appointment. I first had a mammogram and sonargram. Half an hour later I was seeing the surgeon who did a needle aspiration biopsy. We were sent off to have a coffee and to return in an hour for the results. There were cancerous cells in the sample. Half an hour after receiving that news I left hospital with an appointment for a mastectomy in 11 days time.

Please note that at this point the only thing that had been confirmed is that the lump was cancerous but not how advanced it might be nor whether or not it had spread.

22 November 2011 - Mastectomy. In addition to the whole of my right breast they also removed 2 lymph nodes to check if the cancer had spread.

07 December 2011 - Follow up appointment with the surgeon. At this point she was able to tell me that there had been two tumours - one ductal and one lobular. One was classed as Stage 2 and the other as Stage 3. The good news was that the lymph nodes were clear and that there was no evidence of vascular invasion. It was therefore believed that the surgery had removed all of the cancer. Because the tumours were aggressive and were both hormone and HER2+ my case was at this point referred to the oncology department to determine what further treatment should be given.

22 December 2011 - First appointment with the oncologist. I was advised that the recommendation was that I should receive chemotherapy, radiotherapy, Herceptin and be put on a 5 year course of Arimidex.

17 January 2012 - First chemotherapy treatment. I received the FEC regime which meant that I had a treatment every 3 weeks for 6 cycles. My last chemotherapy treatment was on 3rd May.

24 May 2012 - Start Arimidex.

28 May 2012 - First radiotherapy treatment. I had 15 sessions and completed this on 15th June.

13th July 2012 - First Herceptin treatment.

Please note that it was only after the mastectomy and the thorough analysis of all the tissue removed that they were able to tell me the extent of the cancer and the probable prognosis.

Unless part of your DP's ex's early tests included some sort of scan which showed metastases elsewhere in her body then I simply do NOT believe what she is saying. If she did have such a scan and there were mestatases, I still believe they would have removed the primary tumour and she would have had a mastectomy. If the chemotherapy was intended to cure (as opposed to simply be palliative, i.e. to control the disease but not to cure it) I very much doubt they would change the prognosis after only 3 sessions of chemo. If the chemo was always intended to be palliative this would have been explained to her before treatment started.

The long and the short of it is that I don't believe what she is saying.

rainbow2000 Tue 06-Nov-12 15:38:55

Are you sure its really finished,that hes not spinning you a line.Its all very suspect,hes putting her welfare before yous that not good.
I think you need to have a heart to heart and lay it all on the line,he mightnt like what you got to say but whats the alternative.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:40:07

Zombie, I do hope you're doing okay now thanks

Thank you for your insight. Would you mind if I possibly showed your post to DP, depending on what she says to him tomorrow?

EscapeInTheCity Tue 06-Nov-12 15:45:24

OP, you really need to tell your dp about any results on your side. Imagine how you would feel if you dp hadn't told you he was unwell and how unwell he was. I am sure you would have wanted to support him, even if you were in a difficult situation yourself. The same goes for you dp.
Tbh illness doesn't usually wait and take turns. It's hard for the people involved but you are likely to hurt him more by not telling him than by sharing the Issue with him.
Also be careful not take on everyone else problems and brush yours under the carpet. You deserve as much.support as your dp's ex.

Re the ex, I think that your dp ringing her parents, the Macmillan nurses etc is spot on. If she needs then he will have supported her. If it's a lie, it will be exposed.
I completely understand your position if the cancer is terminal though. I would do the same.

IamtheZombie Tue 06-Nov-12 15:46:19

I'm shuffling along, Luminous. That's what we Zombies do. wink

Because the mastectomy appeared to have removed the existing cancer, everything else is just to make sure that there were no stray nasty cells floating around my body looking for somewhere else to take root. My prognosis is excellent and I just have to shuffle on dealing with the side effects of the treatment.

Please do show it to him. I wrote it so you and he would have a first hand account of how the system works.

drizzlecake Tue 06-Nov-12 15:46:53

Lumi, stop berating yourself for being 'overly accepting' or for being pissed off. That is normal in you situation, unfortunately for you she is being very manipulative.

Best wishes, Zombie, what a year for you! thanks

raskolnikov Tue 06-Nov-12 15:52:55

Luminous yes you should definitely tell him. You are his partner, he should be giving you support right now. The ex obviously has all sorts of issues which complicate matters but you two are a couple and he has chosen NOT to be with her. She needs to be told that too. This situation could go on for a long time and you would be stuck in a no-mans land of indecision and not wanting to hurt other people's feeling when you could be the one suffering and needing support the most!

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:56:54

I will suggest to him contacting both her parents and Macmillian. At best it will get her the support she needs; at worst, catch her out.

Thanks Zombie, I'm glad your prognosis is good. x

Drizzle, thank you. And Escape, you are right, it doesn't take turns. He currently has man flu so is telling everyone about his illness wink

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 15:57:49

Actually saying that, if he has man flu, he probably shouldn't be going to visit her, should he? confused

EscapeInTheCity Tue 06-Nov-12 15:59:20

Nope it would not be suitable.

Gigondas Tue 06-Nov-12 15:59:56

Probably not - she may be ok if she is her good week (third week of three before next cycle) but not if in second or end of first week as will be low immunity.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 16:00:40

He must have told her he is ill. He's told everyone that will listen... Hmm. Will warn him tonight.

"Because things were actually going okay until she told him she had cancer. He had told her he was seeing people, she'd started to accept it, and he was going to tell her we were together."

So she told him she had cancer AFTER he told her he was seeing other people. No, she had not started to accept it. Not at all. And she never will, for as long as your boyfriend's behaviour lets her think that she can hope. And every time he travels for an hour to see her, her hope gets a boost.

If you want to accommodate the minute possibility she's telling the truth - and I do believe it is very unlikely to be true - then SchmaltzingMatilda's suggestion is the way to go. He speaks to her parents and gets on to McMillan. For as long as she's the only source of information, it is only a claim to have cancer.

cocolepew Tue 06-Nov-12 16:13:10

I actually think you sound a lovely person op.

If DP is ill he can't go and visit her. I'm suspicious as well, I have to say I don't believe her. DP has to break away from her, they have no children together and it's not a friendly relationship they have, she is emotionally blackmailing him . He needs to man up tbh.

I hope your test results are ok.

diddl Tue 06-Nov-12 16:16:13

He´s not doing her any favours by keeping seeing her if she´s struggling to let go, is he?

I mean it´s been two years-when does he think she would be ready to be told/for him to stop making the effort to see her?

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 16:21:40

WhereYouLeftIt, yes the fact that she told him she was ill after he'd told her he was seeing people did seem coincidental. You are exactly right with your last statement.

Thanks cocolepew. I'm trying not to worry about them too much right now, just want answers, TBH. Can only work when I have facts.

I know I must sound like a tit, and that DP sounds like he has no backbone. But he cares about her, and I care about him. So that's all I have to go with, really. I'm not painting her in a very good light; she is a nice person. Just has a lot of issues.

I will write down the contact details for Macmillian to give to him tonight.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 16:24:38

Diddl, I know that, you know that, our friends know that. Unfortunately I can't make him realise that, he has to come to that conclusion by himself. And if I say it to him, it makes me look jealous. If I say it to him right now, when he thinks she is dying, it just makes me look like a bitch.

So I bite my tongue. I do think its bad for him (he is always such a grumpy bastard after seeing her, she knows how to push his buttons) and actually bad for her as well. But he needs to see that - I can't force him to.

Paiviaso Tue 06-Nov-12 16:29:36

"Because things were actually going okay until she told him she had cancer. He had told her he was seeing people, she'd started to accept it, and he was going to tell her we were together."

They have been broken up for several years. Pandering to her like this is ridiculous. She is a manipulative ex-girlfriend who displayed incredibly inappropriate behaviour. They should not have any contact, let alone this mollycoddling.

I think you need to understand the difference between sound exes with whom you are friendly, and unstable, clingly ones who it is unhealthy to keep in contact with.

Don't be so nice that you become a doormat, OP. Good luck.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 16:34:25

That's twice I've been called a doormat on this thread, maybe I am just being a total dick confused I'm trying to be as supportive and understanding as I can be.

She is highly insecure, to the point that when we first met at a works event (they had been split up 18 months by this point), she introduced herself to me as his girlfriend. Then gave a little laugh and said, "Well. Ex girlfriend, I suppose!".

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 16:36:38

This guy is either a wet girl's blouse and the most pathetic waffler around or he is playing both of you.

Also, I seriously doubt she has terminal breast cancer.

But that's by the by. You've been with this man a year and he is still hanging round his ex far too much.

The only thing I'd tell this man is, 'I'm not happy or comfortable with your situation with your ex anymore (and you're right, you don't own him, would you want to?), so I need some space to think things over. We need to spend some time apart.'

TBH, I'd have dumped him, but when I was single, I got to the point where I just didn't do guys who were still attached to their ex's when there were no children involved. Too much like work, too much drama, and I got too old and not enough energy for that shit.

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 16:38:07

'She is highly insecure, to the point that when we first met at a works event (they had been split up 18 months by this point), she introduced herself to me as his girlfriend. Then gave a little laugh and said, "Well. Ex girlfriend, I suppose!". '

No, she's not, LL, she's what is known in common parlance as a psycho with stalkerish tendancies. She still thinks she is his girlfriend, he has done nothing to seriously dissuade her of this so neither one of them has moved on.

Don't you think you deserve a real partner in life?

CleansLate Tue 06-Nov-12 16:45:58

I can imagine someone I used to go out with doing this. He was obsessed with not being a bad guy or blamed for anything. His 'psycho ex' pulled some pretty special stuff too and for way too long he would go round and try to help because he felt responsible somehow and was terrified she'd hurt herself and it'd be 'his fault'.

OP I have a lot of sympathy with your position but if it was me, I'd wait til he's visited and then (depending on how it's gone), tell him about the lies she's told in the past ("I didn't want to mention it at the time but..."), and the facts zombie has shared which make the ex's situation seem a bit cancer ex machina iyswim.

But that would depend on what I think will happen happening, which is him coming home thinking 'hmmm'.

MrsMuddyPuddles Tue 06-Nov-12 16:46:26

OP, you know her slightly, why not go with him when he visits her?

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 16:48:41

This guy sounds like hard work. Imagine your life without the stress, with a completely unattached partner who is there for you whenever, whom you can share and get support for your own health problems and it's just the two of you, not some psycho in the background.

seaofyou Tue 06-Nov-12 16:55:53

Are you sure LL that DP is not a Narc and feeding off the pair of you?

Just to throw spanner in their!

BonzoDooDah Tue 06-Nov-12 17:01:44

Oh Lumi you sounds perfectly lovely and long suffering. It is very worrying that she introduced herself as his GF 18 months after they had split. Deffo mental health issues there. Also - yes sounds mighty suspicious compared with what Zombie says - but each being different you DO have to give her the benefit of the doubt for the reasons you said. Tricky. I can see entirely why your DP is worried about her but if she is ill he cannot go and see her with his manflu. He could cancel saying he is too ill to come and then drop into the conversation with her that he cannot see her the next night she suggests as he is going out with his GF. Show her that you come before her and then see her with this knowledge.

I'm also VERY wary of people blackmailing others to stay with them. I spent waaaaaay to long with a controlling ex because I thought I couldn't leave (bad bad) and also my uncle - his wife told him if he left she would kill herself. So he stayed - then one day ... after quite a few years of this - he killed himself. Utterly tragic - the whole family hates her (obviously) but it is hard to see how to get yourself out of these things. I don't know what I'm trying to say really but maybe it is that I am sympathising with your DP at finding it hard to extricate himself - but he needs to know she is not his responsibility and her mental health and actions are not his personal liability.
Good luck sad

BonzoDooDah Tue 06-Nov-12 17:03:28

Also - what Muddypuddles say - you could offer to go with him as you have met her and can say you can "help support her" ... or see how manipulative she is?

Spero Tue 06-Nov-12 17:10:09

I know your partner is trying to be kind and do the right thing but he is actually being very cruel, letting her think that maybe she can win him back as he appears to be at her beck and call.

I told my ex when I was diagnosed, because we have a child together and he needed to know in case it had big impact on our daughter. But when he told me he was 'upset' and wanted to know the name of my surgeon I said no. This is private to me, he isn't part of my support network and I did not want to share details with him. If we didn't have a child together I certainly would not have told him.

I agree the timeline is also very suspicious here. I had biopsy, week to diagnosis, then another week for various scans etc.

But the most worrying thing is that you two have been together for a year and she doesn't know? Both of you are pandering to her emotional insecurities in a way which ultimately I think is quite unkind to her. If she is lying about being ill then she needs serious help and your partner needs to disengage fast.

If she really is terminally ill I think she needs to spend her last months not chasing after an impossible dream.

Musomathsci Tue 06-Nov-12 17:19:36

Could somebody PLEASE explain - chinny beard??

I too think that this sounds like a desperate attempt to gain his attention. You say that she has made things difficult for you. If you find out that this is another of her tall stories, time for DP to cut all contact, for the sake of your relationship. She sounds a bit stalker-ish, no?

MsArseBiscuit Tue 06-Nov-12 17:32:00

For what it's worth, OP, I was in a similar situation when my ex-DP's ex-wife started getting 'chest pains' just prior to Christmas one year, leading him to abandon his plans for Christmas at his parents' ( we weren't living together ) and stay at her's for a couple of days as she was 'so distressed' she couldn't possibly manage to cook Christmas dinner. I didn't want to kick up a fuss as (a) I didn't want to look jealous and petty and (b) I was trying to be reasonable.
Even if your dp's ex has been diagnosed with terminal Ca Breast, it's not his problem, ( I am very suspicious about the apparent speed of her diagnosis and prognosis ) - you are his priority, not her, that needs to be made clear to him. ( Voice of experience, I wish I hadn't been so bloody reasonable ).

CinnabarRed Tue 06-Nov-12 17:34:15

Chinny beard = chinny reckon = I don't believe it.

No idea why. It just does. For anyone at primary school in the last 1970s/early 1980s.

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 17:34:32

YY, it takes time to know what effect the chemo has had, weeks, even.

But again, this guy sounds suspect to me.

Gigondas Tue 06-Nov-12 17:35:00

Chinny reckon

It's a school playground thing for those of a certain age.

MsArseBiscuit Tue 06-Nov-12 17:35:44

Musomathsci, I know it as 'chinny reck-on' - a saying of some decades ago when, on hearing something one believes to be extremely unlikely, one strokes one's imaginary beard in a thoughtful manner and says 'chinny reck-on'. ( you may well be too young to remember this )

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:18:07

Thank you all, really do appreciate everything you've said.

I can't go with him, mainly because I have DS, but also because we're not exactly friends; she just knows me as a close friend of his, we've met a few times and explained pleasantries, that's about it. It would look weird if I turned up. Even just in the context of friends, if I was having a crap time and called one of my friends, I'd be a bit put out if they turned up with another friend / their boyfriend. And she certainly wouldn't agree to me going.

He's not hard work, really he's not. He's fantastic, and has helped me become a better person in so many ways. Everyone comes with baggage, I certainly do, and she is just part of his. He is there for me, always, whenever, including midnight visits to A&E when my health has been shit, arranging to take longer lunch breaks to help me debrief after each of my therapy sessions whilst I'm doing a very intense course... He really is brilliant.

Like I say he is coming over tonight. I don't think he will have spoken to her today, but I might ask a few more questions, and depending on what he says, how him Zombies post. Or phrase it that I was concerned for her, so did a bit or research into ways for him / us to support her right now, and came across the time scale, and was concerned that maybe she might have got the wrong idea of what has been said to her? How would that sound?

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:19:03

And have never heard of "chinny beard" or "chinny reckon", am obviously too young wink but I think I might use them from now on!! grin

mutny Tue 06-Nov-12 18:19:14

Got to agree with expat.

Are you sure about this man?

If she met your separate from him why did she mention she was his ex or gf.

Honestly if he is just tying to br nice he needs to stop. Its not helping her, you or him.

Spero Tue 06-Nov-12 18:22:23

She may be part of his emotional history/memories etc, he may still care about her but since when did that translate as him continuingto play boyfriend role in her life? Particularly as he can't even admit that he is in a relationship with YOU.

This just isn't right. Up to you if you chose to tolerate it, but I wouldn't.

MsArseBiscuit Tue 06-Nov-12 18:22:26

You could give it a try LL, is he likely to want to defend her against even the tiniest insinuation she is being manipulative. ( I know that my ex did this when I pointed out that his ex was probably not at death's door )

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:23:10

We met at events that are linked to all our works, he had warned me she would be there, and I was stood with him when she arrived. Once he's walked off she came over to say hello.

I agree its not helpful to any of us, but like I said in a previous post, I can't make him realise that, as pointing it out just makes me sound jealous.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:25:56

MrsAB, I'm not sure. When I've pointed out that she is really quite nasty to him at times before (she will quite happily kick up a fuss about nothing, once spent two hours of a work related thing crying because they weren't together any more...) he says that she had a rough time in the past, and has a lot of issues now. But faced with written evidence that she might not be telling the exact truth, he may react differently.

Spero Tue 06-Nov-12 18:27:43

I don't think it makes you sound jealous, it makes you sound like a reasonable and mentally healthy person.

And anyway, why shouldn't you be jealous? He is clearly still very emotionally enmeshed with her, to extent he keeps your relationship hidden. That's really sad. He should be very proud of fact he is with you and want everyone to know. If that upsets her, it is her problem, she hasn't been with him for about two years now?

FiercePanda Tue 06-Nov-12 18:27:59

Re: chinny reckon, at our school we'd eye the person talking bollocks, stroke our chins slowly and just mouth "mmmm, beard beard beard". I wish I knew where we got it from, it must be one of those things kids do all over the country, just like the way ALL young school classes greet their teacher in the morning with the same sing-song "good MORning MISSus [Surname]".

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:32:37

I'm also going to start using "beard beard beard" next time someone at work is talking crap grin

Do you not think, Spero? I think because she was always super jealous, possessive and suspicious of him (as is her nature), I'm always concerned of coming over in the same way.

And because of my own mental health condition, I am never sure if I am thinking rationally or having a bad "head" day. The fact you all seem to have had a hmm reaction to what she's said reassures me that I am not simply paranoid at least.

EMS23 Tue 06-Nov-12 18:34:21

I haven't read the whole thread but something similar happened to a good friend of mine.
Turned out his ex was lying. He'd thought she didn't know he had a new girlfriend (my friend) but actually, she'd found out and the cancer story started,

Just saying like...

WhoNickedMyName Tue 06-Nov-12 18:34:22

She is highly insecure, to the point that when we first met at a works event (they had been split up 18 months by this point), she introduced herself to me as his girlfriend. Then gave a little laugh and said, "Well. Ex girlfriend, I suppose!".

And at this point you had been his girlfriend for 6 months, yes? So why didn't you put her straight? In fact, if you know her as well as you appear to, then there's no reason why you shouldn't tell her/drop into conversation, that you and he are a couple.

Out of interest, does anyone else know you're a couple?

Cancer or no cancer, one of you (preferably your DP) needs to tell her you are his girlfriend.

I actually think, now I've read your further posts, that he is behaving incredibly cruelly (not sure whether that's intentional or not), and yes, I'm afraid I think you're a bit of a doormat, sorry.

MsArseBiscuit Tue 06-Nov-12 18:38:17

You have my complete sympathy, LL, I know what it's like, ex's ex even needed him to change some of the halogen bulbs as she 'could never manage it ' - looking back I should have told him straight rather than just expressed surprise. I have a fair bit of knowledge about cancer so should you want me to run my eye over anything she's claimed, then feel free to pm me.
( she's a fruitloop IMO )

Spero Tue 06-Nov-12 18:38:18

I think you have lost sight of what is a normal and healthy response to this situation. Does your partner encourage you in this? Does he say you can't react to this situation because it makes you sound possessive and jealous??

It is normal and healthy for both people in a relationship to acknowledge that fact to each other and the world.

It is really creepy, unhealthy and just plain wrong to keep it a secret to pander to someone else's emotional dysfunction.

Sorry, but I don't think your partner is quite the knight in shining armour that you describe.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:40:29

I don't think he intends to be cruel, quite the opposite, he's trying to stop her being hurt, but I do know what you mean.

I didn't put her straight because actually I was far too stunned to say anything! And by the time she'd corrected herself, she then spotted DP, and went to say hello to him.

Everyone else knows we're a couple, yes, no secrecy aside from with her.

If this were me, I would ask my DP why she wants him involved. Does she not have friends or family?

Regardless of this crazy situation, op, the main issue here is the fact that she doesn't know about you. You need to wise up here.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:44:38

Thank you MrsAB smile

No no, not at all Spero. I suspect that's one of my own issues about being perceived as such. If I told him how uncomfortable it was making me, he would probably be upset to hear I'd worked myself up emotionally.

BUT if she is telling the truth, then I don't want to alienate him, and make him feel like he can't talk to me about what's going on, because he will obviously still be dealing with a lot emotionally.

Kundry Tue 06-Nov-12 18:47:34

I work in this area and although there are cancers which present very late and the person dies very quickly without having been able to have treatment, or only having a little bit of treatment, breast cancer isn't one of them. She might possibly have misunderstood and have breast cancer, not responded to her first treatment and be lined up for something different but her prognosis is still going to be much longer than I think you or your DP are thinking.

If your ex is going round he should be expecting so see someone very ill, who is very tired, possibly not eating much and probably losing their hair. She would likely also have a load of medication boxes and prescriptions lying around, contact details for the chemo unit, letters with appointments and marks on her arms where they gave her the chemo and have done blood tests. Oncologists almost always send their patients letters saying what treatment they have had so she should have these too.

If she doesn't have any of these, she is a nutjob. Sorry from the description so far, I'm very sceptical. Even my kindest thought is that she has cancer but has misunderstood what she has been told and is going to have some more treatment.

SirSugar Tue 06-Nov-12 18:47:45

I wasn't aware that you could have three chemo sessions and all the rest of the diagnosis in just a few weeks.

Maybe she has got cancer and he has shortened the timeline ? Just another way of looking at it

Spero Tue 06-Nov-12 18:48:49

If you find a situation upsetting, you ought to feel you can talk to him about it. Otherwise this will just fester and spoil your relationship down the line.

I appreciate now is not the best time for a relationship audit. But it will have to happen sometime. If she isn't terminal (and I don't think she is), give him a few weeks to get over the shock, be all supportive etc... But then I think you really have to sit down and Have A Chat about how he deals with this situation from now on.

Hmm, yes, beard, jimmy hill, chinny reckon etc.
She sounds v odd and his pandering to her is peculiar too.
I suppose all will be revealed tmrw night after the visit tho.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 18:59:23

Kundry that's a really helpful insight, thank you. I might show that to DP as well (though maybe not the bottom bit!), so that he knows what to look for when he goes... And to be suspicious if he doesn't.

Know the time line is accurate because another friend of ours was having a lump in her breast checked out at the same time she said she was going to the GP because of a lump in hers. I remember him being upset because they were both going through that at the same time.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Tue 06-Nov-12 19:00:05

How long were they together?

I am worried about you.

Currently you are putting yourself, and allowing him to put you, second after her - this is not right, you are his GF she is his EX. Not telling her about you for a year is not right, not for either of you (women).

All the BS about 'suicide' is ridiculous, you don't deal with it like that, you get the person the help they need, you don't pretend things aren't as they are.

You don't own him, you are right but you should have boundaries/levels of acceptability within your relationship for your own needs and you don't seem to (so, you don't say 'you can't see her again' you say, 'if you choose to continue seeing her I will assume you are putting her feelings ahead of mine and I wont accept that in a relationship').

He is pandering to her, to a degree that is just not healthy for any of you. If you feel you can't tell him this, can't one of your (joint) friends?

You are going to counselling - which is a good thing, but it probably also means that you need help, support & understanding. He is 'seemingly' giving this to you on one hand but taking it away with the other and all to benefit her.

Door mat is not the right word, though I'm not sure what is. You could be seriously ill and you are considering not telling him because his ex might (or might not) have cancer. That's not right.

I am also another one who thinks that this 'cancer' is terribly convenient just after he's told her he's dating hmm She has a history of being manipulative & a liar, sadly I'd put money on this being an extension of that. If she doesn't have cancer he needs to tell someone else what she has been up to and walk away from her permanently.

FiercePanda Tue 06-Nov-12 19:00:53

Let's put the cancer issue to one side for a second...

^*I don't think he intends to be cruel, quite the opposite, he's trying to stop her being hurt, but I do know what you mean. ^*

LL, it isn't his responsibility to stop her being hurt. She's an adult. Relationships end. She's not handled it at all because she hasn't needed to - she can click her fingers and she'll get his attention and his company, he'll visit, have a cup of tea and a catch up with her when she demands. Why does he capitulate to her demands? They have no ties to each other, apart from a shared past, a relationship that has been over for two years. That should be something to look back on, not something that keeps being dragged up.

You're his partner now, he should be giving all the attention he lavishes on his ex to you. It isn't unreasonable or demanding to say that you expect to be put first and you shouldn't allow yourself to be made to feel uncomfortable for not being happy with him visiting her when she snaps her fingers.

I suspect, like many others here, that she's found out he's seeing "someone" and all of a sudden she has terminal cancer and MUST have his attention. Definitely show him the post with the timeline from diagnosis to treatment etc - he needs to see that either way. Supporting an ex through a terminal illness is a noble thing to do, but there have to be boundaries and imho she won't be the one to establish them. If she is lying, he has to know (sod worrying about how you look - if she's lying and you find out, you must tell him). If she's lying and he finds out himself (ie through Macmillan or from her parents), he will need your support for a time. No one likes finding out someone they loved has lied about something so serious.

Good luck LL, I hope everything goes well - for your health issues too. Make sure you get the support YOU need and deserve.

olgaga Tue 06-Nov-12 19:06:04

Why does he want to be involved? They weren't married, they don't have kids. What on earth is wrong with him that he's still running around after her like this?

Honestly, he sounds as bad as she does. If not worse.

The only puzzle here is which one of them is the narcissist, and which is the co-dependent?

The most alarming thing though is this statement:

I don't know how to be there for him without appearing to be interfering, because I don't know her very well, and don't want to appear like I'm suspicious or anything when I ask how she is.

This is after a year with him? You don't sound very secure or comfortable in this relationship. After a whole year, he's still keeping his relationship with you quiet! Sounds to me that he likes you both hanging around.

Aren't you wondering where this relationship is going, and whether he's actually worth hanging around for?

Finally, do you honestly believe him? Because I'm not sure I would. Do you have any mutual acquaintances through your work you could check this out with?

I hope he's not just preparing the way to see her more regularly while he makes up his mind who he wants to be with. Maybe I'm being cynical, but it wouldn't be the first time on here that a DH/DP has rushed off to be someone's knight in shining armour only to end up in a relationship with them!

ZorbaTheHoarder Tue 06-Nov-12 19:06:19

Hello OP, to echo what some of the other posters have said, I think your DP is sending his ex very mixed messages, knowing that she still wants him back. Travelling for an hour to be a shoulder to cry on for someone you know wants you back isn't really helping them understand that the relationship is truly over - it's just prolonging the agony of uncertainty. I know you are keeping quiet out of a desire not to hurt his or her feelings, but I think that the sooner these very important issues (including your health) are out in the open, the better for everyone. Why should your feelings be put on the back burner so as not to upset someone he finished with years ago? By the way, if I remember correctly, the "chinny reckon" business all goes back to Jimmy Hill, the long-chinned, bearded football pundit of a few years ago. We also used to stand around stroking our stuck-out chins going "Mmmm, chinnnnnnnny!" Good luck, OP.

EugenesAxe Tue 06-Nov-12 19:09:54

There was a thread on here a while back that revealed many people had lied about having cancer. I was shock that anyone could even contemplate it but there were several posters who said they'd known someone do it in a power play.

So saying that - it sounded very suspicious to me. My DM had breast cancer (thankfully not terminal) - she was put on, what I'll call, menopause pills immediately, given a lumpectomy in which they also removed her armpit lymph glands (standard response, I believe). Histological (?) analysis of the lymph glands showed no spread outside her breast. She was given radiation as a follow up but it responded very well to the drugs.

This was a 'grade 1' (out of 5) cancer - and she had a fair bit of prodding for it. I am surprised they would say she was terminal having not operated and finding out whether it had spread. Perhaps someone who's expert in oncology will come on to verify if what I've described happens in all cases, or if you could proceed to chemotherapy with no investigation and based on the mammogram alone. I've never heard of a breast cancer patient that hadn't been operated on either as a lumpectomy or whatever it is called when they whip the whole breast off.

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 19:22:19

'It is really creepy, unhealthy and just plain wrong to keep it a secret to pander to someone else's emotional dysfunction.

Sorry, but I don't think your partner is quite the knight in shining armour that you describe.'

This.

And honestly, I don't believe the cancer situation at all. My daughter recently died of acute myeloid leukaemia, she lived for nearly 8 months after diagnosis and we came to know, sadly, several other children who had forms of cancer (usually brain) that were terminal and they still tried chemo on these children and operations when possible (about the only ones I can think of who knew their children were terminal in that time frame were the DIPG patients, a form of brain cancer).

Our child did not have chemo in a day unit or as an outpatient and even when she was at home, which was rarely, our home looked like a chemist. Poeple who've had chemo, even if it doesn't work, often need many drugs to control side effects that can come from even after the course has finished.

FWIW, our child didn't lose her hair completely till after her 4th round, but she lost most of it about a week after the 1st round.

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 19:22:48

YY, Eugene, it's stunning how many lie about having cancer angry.

comethasmybrokentelly Tue 06-Nov-12 19:24:11

No idea whether she is telling the truth

BUT RE Macmillan nurses.

some people with cancer want nothing to do with them. Please would you all remember that when someone you know has cancer.

OP you sound lovely and perfectly able to handle the situation with sensitivity

coppertop Tue 06-Nov-12 19:33:34

The thing is, even if the ex turns out to be telling lies about her health, would this be enough for him to cut all ties with her? Or will it be a case of "Poor ex. She must have some real mental health issues to even think of such a thing. She needs me now more than ever."

And if he does cut all contact with her, what does it tell you? It tells you that he only decided to take action because of how he personally was affected, and not because he was putting you first.

This whole business is all very much about him. He likes the role of faithful DP, doing his best to battle against the evil sway of the ex. He also likes being the reluctant hero who has to swoop in to make the ex feel better, no matter what the effect on his own partner.

I would tread very carefully here, OP.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 19:38:51

I'm disgusted to hear that this is almost familiar ground. Some people are so twisted.

Expat, I hope this thread hasn't been painful for you, and I'm sorry if it has.

AmberLeaf Tue 06-Nov-12 19:39:52

Olgaga I wondered that too.

thanks to Zombie and Gigondas

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 19:41:28

I think if it came out she was lying, he would be beyond furious, and yes, would cut all ties with her.

diddl Tue 06-Nov-12 19:45:06

If you all work together-how is it possible that she doesn´t know you are together?confused

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 19:47:28

And yes, mutual friends have confirmed her talking about it, and him. She also told me the last time I saw her that she had a lump in her breast, and was wondering whether she should go to the doctors.

I think what's wrong with him is that he doesn't want to upset or hurt anyone. He wants to keep everyone happy, and be there for everyone. It really is his downfall. He takes on too much work wise for the same reason; he doesn't like saying no, unless he absolutely has to.

I'm very secure in the relationship, just not with myself. So my reaction and concern with how he might react if I mentioned anything to him is a very selfish one. I'm working on it. He knows me very well, however, and wouldn't be surprised if he hasn't already worked out at least part of what's going on in my head - he normally has, before I even say a word.

He's on his way over now. Will see how things go.

diddl Tue 06-Nov-12 19:49:58

He´s not keeping everyone happy though!

You´re not happy & he´s not happy when he´s seen her!

seaofyou Tue 06-Nov-12 19:51:55

I think because she was always super jealous, possessive and suspicious of him (as is her nature), I'm always concerned of coming over in the same way.

Yep Narcs are very good at making the DP feel like they are going mad...where's GB/Springy to add to this!

Teabagtights Tue 06-Nov-12 19:56:56

Its possible that the lump has been removed, but she decided to elaborate.

I too feel she is not being truthful, however only time will tell.

I hope your tests come back showing you are going to be okay and not subject to medical procedures yourself.

olgaga Tue 06-Nov-12 20:06:04

I suppose it's possible the ex could have had prior appointments/screening and gone through those early diagnostic stages without telling anyone, just hoping for the best - especially if she has a teenage daughter.

Clutching at straws now to make up for my earlier cynicism...

IamtheZombie Tue 06-Nov-12 20:14:50

Luminous, you say "She also told me the last time I saw her that she had a lump in her breast, and was wondering whether she should go to the doctors."

When exactly was the last time you saw her? I'm just trying to get a better idea of the timeline she's been feeding you.

Mimishimi Tue 06-Nov-12 20:18:58

If an ex told me that that they had cancer (terminal or not) and wanted to see me, I would definitely pay them a few visits. However, I'd insist that my first visit coincide with one of their appointments so that I could talk to their doctor. I would want confirmation from health professionals around them. I would not meet up for coffee with them indefinitely just based on what they were telling me.

clam Tue 06-Nov-12 20:26:31

Leaving the cancer to one side for a moment, what the HELL is this woman doing having such a presence in your life and relationship?

You both sound nice people, kind and caring, but come on. She's an adult, their relationship is over (isn't it???) so therefore she should play no part in your life at all, other than a colleague might.

OwedToAutumn Tue 06-Nov-12 20:27:02

Are you sure they've split up?

Maybe I am being ridiculously cynical, but "she would kill herself if she found out about you". Really?

CleansLate Tue 06-Nov-12 20:30:12

My ex liked his ex 'needing' him I think. He encouraged it. It stroked his ego to think that he was so wonderful someone couldn't cope without him and might kill herself over him.

I hope OP's partner isn't like my ex but just going on what she's said about this particular situation there's a lot I recognise in terms of the setup. My ex's ex (so clunky, sorry), said she was dying too.

WhoNickedMyName Tue 06-Nov-12 20:44:52

If you know her well enough that she'd tell you about a lump in her breast and that she's considering going to the doctor about it, then you know her pretty well actually.

So I really can't get my head around why you yourself wouldn't tell her about your relationship. There must have been opportunities to do so.

How exactly did it come about that the ex hasn't been told of your relationship? Did your DP expressly ask you/tell you not to tell her?

If an ex told me they had cancer and wanted me to visit, I would probably bring DH.

EugenesAxe Tue 06-Nov-12 20:49:53

Can I just apologise for not reading all before I posted... I have done now out of curiosity and... darn I've forgotten the name already, anyway that other poster who worked in this area already said a lot of the points I was making.

Sorry to all posting that have been affected by cancer sad

Flisspaps Tue 06-Nov-12 21:20:24

Whonicked I was just thinking the same thing about the ex telling LL about the lump. I'd suggest that seeing as she's told you about the lump and thinking about getting it checked out then it wouldn't be inappropriate for you to visit along with your DP.

CajaDeLaMemoria Tue 06-Nov-12 21:28:12

Was it out of character for her to tell you about the lump?

If you are close enough for that to be a natural extension of conversation, you are close enough to visit with her.

If you aren't, I'd bet a lot on that she is aware, or at least suspects, that you and DP are together.

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 21:34:17

'Expat, I hope this thread hasn't been painful for you, and I'm sorry if it has.'

No, no worries. I have already seen the most upsetting thing a person can see in the entire world. It does majorly piss me off when people lie about having cancer, no matter how messed up they are.

But again, that's by the by, this guy sounds suspect to me, no matter how great you think he is, he seems to feed off others peoples' crises and that's not healthy. You sound far healthier than you give yourself credit for. You acknowledge who you are, what your health problems and issues are, and actively seek to deal with them.

He doesn't.

The whole not telling her about you and him. After a year? Honestly, LL, you sound like a really nice person, and life is way, way too short to spend on people who don't put you ahead of their twisted ex with whom he has no children. She's a adult.

His pandering to her would ring alarm bells for me and really put me off.

expatinscotland Tue 06-Nov-12 21:37:26

But given my own experiences and those of others here, including those who are well aware of the protocol for breast cancer (I'm not, having only dealt with a paed case but one who had a very aggressive form of leukaemia with two genetic abnormalities, one of which was particularly damning), I smell a fat rat.

Her home should look like a chemist. These patients needs lots of drugs. Even terminally ill people are in need of many drugs, even at home. Terminally ill people who chose to stay at home have palliative care healthcare professionals who visit regularly.

Portofino Tue 06-Nov-12 21:42:07

I have not read all the thread, bar the beginning. Whatever the ins and outs of the situation, she is HIS EX. They are not together anymore. HE IS WITH YOU. They have no children together. Her illness should be none of his business. You seem to spend far too much time fretting over what lies she has told, and pretending you are not his girlfriend.

Portofino Tue 06-Nov-12 21:43:43

And what expat says - because if ANYONE knows - she does.

Spero Tue 06-Nov-12 22:05:15

So you think YOU are being selfish by wondering about his reaction if you confront him? You are 'very secure in the relationship' just 'not in yourself' ?

Sorry, I read that and I think - he has really done a number on you. He is convincing you that any unease you think about this situation is a product of your own unhealthy mindset.

He wants to make everyone happy? If that is true then he is simply going to make everyone unhappy.

I just struggle to understand why you don't think you have every right to be pissed off and unhappy with his attitude towards his ex and publicly 'owing' your relationship. And if as you say 'everyone' BUT her knows about it, then she also knows about it. Unless everyone you know has signed a pact never to mention anything about you two, post anything suspcious on Facebook etc, etc.

Please, please, please say you are going to talk to him about this properly in the next few weeks. If he can't handle that conversation I think you have got to seriously question what kind of future this relationship has.

You deserve, as do we all, a relationship full of love, respect and HONESTY.

3LittleHens Tue 06-Nov-12 22:06:14

Perhaps I am a bit gullible, but I would wait for a bit, because IF she really is terminal, why give her any more pain to deal with (as you say yourself). I pressume from what you say about her character she is unlikely to have a support network.

I wouldn't resent my boyfriend being a support to an ex under the same circumstances, it shows what he is made of in a very good light in my opinion.

HOWEVER, if it is a lie and a desperate attempt to get him back, your boyfriend must totally cut her off without question for all your sakes.

Mutny - I know a girl who had terminal cancer who totally recovered - she was even looking into going to Switzerland for euthanasia. But sadly a very rare case.

clam Tue 06-Nov-12 22:16:36

You've said several times about how you fear being perceived as harsh/unkind/bitchy if you were to voice your doubts. Do you really think so?

If your dp can see the best in his ex, why do you suppose he would automatically jump on you for asking some questions? Surely he muct know you better than to think you're being deliberately malicious?

Portofino Tue 06-Nov-12 22:16:44

It is ridiculous. Someone with terminal cancer would not/should not be seeking out her ex boyfriend since 2 years for support.

Portofino Tue 06-Nov-12 22:22:06

If she had NOONE else then she would accept you as part of the package,

Portofino Tue 06-Nov-12 22:25:35

If I was terminally ill and a single parent, my ONLY consideration would be about my child.

MrsTomHardy Tue 06-Nov-12 22:47:55

It just sounds far too bizarre for me.

And yes i do remember Chinny Beard, havent heard that for bloomin ages grin

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 22:49:14

To answer a few questions - they were together for several years. He tried to end the relationship a few years before they actually separated, have heard this from various people, not just him.

I last saw her in the latter half of October. I was moving something and doubled over with pain. She saw me, and came over to ask if I was okay. I thanked her and said I was fine, just stupid certain body parts not working correctly. She said something along the lines of, "Yes know that feeling!" then told me about wondering to go to a doctor. She would have seen me (along with several other women) speaking to DP that day.

My mental health condition is quite a harsh one, and impairs my judgement. It also makes me very frightened of loosing people (again, maybe why I am slightly more understanding / patient with her). I hesitate about telling anyone I care about something they might not like or completely agree with. If it was just him I had these thoughts with, then yes, it would be down to him. But because its everyone, I know its me. I've recognised this recently, and am working on changing it, and having more confidence in myself. But that's by the by really.

Have just had a very interesting conversation with DP. He's now not going to see her tomorrow, as she has something on she'd forgotten about. But from what he said, I think he is somewhat suspicious of her too.

I also told him about feeling unable to tell him about my own health because of him dealing with hers. He told me I was being ridiculous, gave me a big hug, and told me he is perfectly capable of worrying about several people at once, including his fucking beloved football team.

Hassled Tue 06-Nov-12 22:51:36

I'm afraid I'm also in the "are you sure she knows they've split up?" camp. You don't live together, she doesn't know about you, he doesn't want to tell her about you - it's all bloody odd by anyone's standards.

Hassled Tue 06-Nov-12 22:52:25

X post

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 23:01:13

For various reasons, yes I am entirely sure they have split up. I think he's sending her unintentional mixed signals at times, but yes, am sure they've split.

moajab Tue 06-Nov-12 23:02:36

Are you sure she doesn't know about you and your DP? Especially if you have mutual friends/aquaintences. Could somebody have mentioned it? Especially if your DP had hinted that he was dating it seems quite likely that she might have tried to find out more. And then she finds out you have health problems and your DP was also concerned about another friend with cancer... it sounds possible that she then hit on the perfect scheme to get his attention.

SolidGoldYESBROKEMYSPACEBAR Tue 06-Nov-12 23:10:50

I think you've got to a point where you feel you are not allowed to express any needs or negative feelings because you don't want to be like her. I hope this isn't because your P has manipulated you into feeling that way, because he likes to play women off against one another. It's possible that simply watching her pathetic whinyarsery has been enough to make you feel that you have to be the strong and untouchable one, but it is OK to want support and reassurance from your partner, especially when you aren't well yourself.

cocolepew Tue 06-Nov-12 23:18:49

I'm thinking the same as moajab. I think she knows you are a couple.

LuminousLaces Tue 06-Nov-12 23:23:16

SolidG, its not the first. He always encourages me to tell him what I think, and when he can see I'm not being honest, reminds me that he's not going to leave me for disagreeing with him. Which is exactly what I need to be told. Possibly true on your second point, but mainly its my own deep burning issues.

ProphetOfDoom Tue 06-Nov-12 23:30:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

IamtheZombie Tue 06-Nov-12 23:31:12

OK, Luminous, you last saw her in the "latter half of October". That means within the last 3-4 weeks. In that time she has allegedly seen the doctor, been diagnosed and had 3 rounds of chemo.

No fucking way.

ProphetOfDoom Tue 06-Nov-12 23:31:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ProphetOfDoom Tue 06-Nov-12 23:37:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

clam Tue 06-Nov-12 23:39:32

And at that point 3 weeks ago, she was still only thinking about going to the GP, because, ooh, coincidence, she had a lump just like that other colleague.
Her doctors surgery is one to sign up for if she even got an appointment that quick, let alone a referral and treatment.

CuriousMama Tue 06-Nov-12 23:41:04

Just read through your posts and tbh she sounds a lot like my stalker ex. He came up with allsorts including cancer angry I had him to court though as he got nasty.

I really think your dp is wrong, he isn't helping the situation by visiting her. In some ways it's cruel.

I hope you can get well as it can't be easy for you. Relationships are hard enough without being insecure.

NigellaLawless Tue 06-Nov-12 23:49:49

Spero wrote this:
And if as you say 'everyone' BUT her knows about it, then she also knows about it.

and I couldn't agree more

OP you then wrote this:
I last saw her in the latter half of October. I was moving something and doubled over with pain. She saw me, and came over to ask if I was okay. I thanked her and said I was fine, just stupid certain body parts not working correctly. She said something along the lines of, "Yes know that feeling!" then told me about wondering to go to a doctor. She would have seen me (along with several other women) speaking to DP that day.

So how on earth wouldn't she know about you two?

On the very slight possibility that your relationship has bypassed the workplace grapvine I really think that your DP has to tell her. If he thinks she will react badly, how the hell does he think she will feel when she not only finds out you are seeing each other but that you have been doing so for a YEAR!!! and that 'everyone' knows about it! The longer its a secret (if indeed it really is) the worse it will be when it comes out.

Is there any possibility that your DP could be having an affair with his ex? It just seems so utterly odd to me that 2 whole years after the relationship has ended and 1 year into your relationship he is still this involved. 2 years is a really long time!!!!

I don't think its fair to call you a doormat, but I do think that you may need to reassess your position in this relationship. Personally I would not be willing to live a lie for the sake of my Dps exDPs mental health. Life is too short and surely living in this way, knowing that you are lying to this woman (even if only by ommission) every time you see her can not be doing your own mental health any good!

Sorry i meant this post to be supportive, but the more I type the angrier I find myself, but I am angry on your behalf! I do feel that one way or another you are getting the short straw in all of this!

Finally I will end my rant by saying my mother had breast cancer 10 years ago. It was bad, it went undiagnosed for a long time and it had got into her lymphnodes so she needed pretty aggressive treatment. She is alive and kicking but she went through the mill with the treatments which were essentially those already outlined earlier by Zombie. The only thing I would add is that our house didn't look like a pharmacy (perhaps things have changed in teh last ten years) but my mother looked awful: she had a mastectomy, the chemotherapy made her loose her hair, vomit a lot and she was utterly exhausted. I may be wrong on this, but whilst not all chemo will cause hair loss the chemo you get to treat breast cancer will affect your hair, so if she is looking 'normal' then I would suggest that she has not had chemo.

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 00:15:20

Thank you for all of your input, really do appreciate it. Especially on the medical side of things. Though I am so sorry to hear of so many personal experiences thanks

When I say we are in the same kind of work, we don't share a work place. We end up in the same place for things a handful of times a year. I don't want to say too much or might give any of our identities away, but "office gossip" as such isn't really an issue.

Its possible she has worked out we are together. Then again, she suspects him to be with anyone she sees him talking to. The last time I saw her, she stood glaring each time he was talking to a woman. Any woman. She then questioned all of us that she knew in turn about was he was X or sleeping with Y, etc. The more I say about her aloud, the more sorry I feel for her, actually.

She apparently had her scan same week as mutual friends, who was told she just had lumpy boobs (!!!).

Just reaslised I made a mistake, sorry - it was the latter half of September I last saw her, not October. I'm mot on the ball tonight. So about 7 weeks ago.

IamtheZombie Wed 07-Nov-12 00:52:02

Nigella, my house didn't look like a pharmacy either. The only drugs I took at home during the chemo were the anti-nausea drugs. Those lasted for 3 days each cycle.

I did lose almost all of my hair, but not immediately. As best I can recall now it started during cycle 2 - i.e. much more than 2 or 3 weeks into the treatment.

Exhaustion? Oh, yes. Absobloodyfuckinglutey - to the point of being debilitating.

Luminous, even 7 weeks is far, far too short a timescale.

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 01:12:48

Thank you for making me feel like I'm not just being a prize bitch by being suspicious of what she's saying at least. I do know the mutual friend who had a scan around the same time is also highly cynical, possibly more so than I am.

It is possible, I guess, that she has known for a long time, and is only now telling people, but that doesn't really fit. She was telling everyone about visiting the doctors when I last saw her, wondering if she should or not.

But on the other hand, this would be a very big lie to tell. Saying you have cancer is one thing. Saying you have terminal cancer? Huge.

Jesus am very confused. I have her email address because of work, and am trying very hard to forget that fact!!!

I do feel sorry for DP though. If she's telling the truth, he will loose someone he cared about for a long time. If she's lying, he will feel incredibly betrayed. He doesn't trust people easily, and this would really hurt him.

BrittaPerry Wed 07-Nov-12 01:22:05

My alarm bells are ringing here about whether they have split up...are you sure he isn't feeding her 'nobody understands us, our love s jut too strong for us to keep our hands off each other, but we can't tell people because they will oppress us'?

I ask because I got fed that line a few years ago, and I used to accidentally on purpose call him my boyfriend in public and eventually got really clingy as it dawned on me that he was playing me - his excuse was that he didn't want to upset me by splitting up.

I never did anything like fake cancer, but then it didn't go on for two years. I did self harm and take a half arsed overdose. If she was unstable to start with, then him playing her (even to a lesser extent by just keeping the possibility open) would only make her worse - he isn't helping anyone but himself.

BANGBonkeyMollocksBANG Wed 07-Nov-12 01:42:01

I also think she's lying.

I also think she know your with him or she knows he is with someone else which ua why she his pulled this outvthe bag.

Wingedharpy Wed 07-Nov-12 02:14:15

Luminous I think that both you and your partner sound as if you are both sensitive, caring souls.
I can well imagine how/why your partner has found himself in this situation because of his ex-partner's suicide threats but, for everyone's sake, serious illness or not, he needs to cut contact with her.
I can see that he may feel that he is letting her down gently but in fact, every contact he has with her is just fueling her hope that he will get back with her.
In the long run, it would be kinder for her if he told her the truth.
This may well be the time to do that so that he does not get sucked in to her emotional situation - whether it is real or imagined.

"But on the other hand, this would be a very big lie to tell. Saying you have cancer is one thing. Saying you have terminal cancer? Huge."

Yes, it is huge. But from all your descriptions of her behaviour, it seems entirely plausible. That's just how badly she wants him. In her twisted imagination, she pretends to have terminal cancer, he is lured back, she will make a miraculous recovery, he will stay because he has realised through almost losing her that he cannot live without her. And they both live Happily Ever After. The End. Complete vindication of deploying the Big Lie.

The whole getting-found-out-and-completely-fucking-him-off scenario is beyond her fixation imagination. Absolutely not on her radar.

7 weeks is far too short a time scale.
I've had 4 friends go through breast cancer in the past two years. All with varying diagnoses and prognoses. Chemo cycles are in blocks with 3 weeks in between each treatment, this gives your immune system chance to recover before the next chemo.

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 09:58:38

WhereYouLeftIt, that's exactly what I'm thinking. Her behavior makes me think she has a personality disorder of sorts, to be honest.

WingedHarpy, I agree with you. But how do you say to someone "I know X has said she will kill herself, but I don't think she will, so I'd like you to stop seeing her"? sad And more than that, how do you say "I know (she says) she has terminal cancer, but I think she's screwing with you, and that you're actually going to cause her more difficulty by supporting her right now". He truly is frightened for her, and she has given him cause in the past to be.

Fatima, that's what I thought too, but since she's in a different area, so under a different NHS trust, I wasn't sure if it varied from place to place. I hope all of your friends are okay.

BellaTheGymnast Wed 07-Nov-12 10:41:35

What did you say when she asked you who he was going out with?

manticlimactic Wed 07-Nov-12 10:50:05

So he went round last night? What did she say?

MrsMuddyPuddles Wed 07-Nov-12 12:09:18

OP, are you seeing a councellor/getting CBT/or something right now? your "how do you say..." questions should probably best be explored with an expert...

Spero Wed 07-Nov-12 14:23:28

I think you say it just the way you have said it.

What's the mystery? Whether she is ill or not his behaviour isn't helping her and it is upsetting you. If he can't deal with the simple expression of your hurt and why you are hurt, the difficulties here go way beyond her.

LuminousLaces,you've said that other people are aware of her past lies. Since your raising these past lies with him seems to not be an option, could one of them raise the subject with him? Along the lines I suggested previously -

"I need to talk to you about X. I think she may be trying to manipulate you into getting back with her. The reason I think this is because she has told lies before, for that reason. LuminousLaces and Z know about these lies. We kept them from you because we thought it would hurt you. But this is too big, and I think you need to consider that this diagnosis may be another lie."

kinkyfuckery Wed 07-Nov-12 14:32:41

So she has told him she has terminal cancer? Anyone else mentioned it at all?

I'd even go as far as to mention the possibility that he is lying to you, to stop you from telling her. To me, it sounds like he is taking advantage of your 'mental health condition' to get what he wants.

BobbiFleckmann Wed 07-Nov-12 14:35:19

What Kinky said. I wonder whether this is a way for him to increase his "once every few months" visits, and I wonder whether he's ever stopped shagging her.

OneMoreGo Wed 07-Nov-12 14:51:14

I'm with those who feel he is lying to you, rather than her lying to him. He sounds way too emotionally invested and I'm wondering why that is - my guess would be, because they haven't really split up. Why else wouldn't he just tell her he was seeing you and wave goodbye to the woman? Heck, you could be the OW sad
It is his behaviour you should be scrutinizing the most closely of all, not hers.

Lougle Wed 07-Nov-12 15:09:19

"He was actually going to tell her... And then this happened."

So often the case. Such bad timing.

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 15:10:17

'I do feel sorry for DP though. If she's telling the truth, he will loose someone he cared about for a long time. If she's lying, he will feel incredibly betrayed. He doesn't trust people easily, and this would really hurt him.'

You should be feeling sorry for yourself because this guy doesn't value your relationship enough to tell this person their relationship is over and he is moving on, no more visits, no more contact.

Incidents the OP personally experienced :
" ... when we first met at a works event (they had been split up 18 months by this point), she introduced herself to me as his girlfriend. Then gave a little laugh and said, "Well. Ex girlfriend, I suppose!"."

"Its possible she has worked out we are together. Then again, she suspects him to be with anyone she sees him talking to. The last time I saw her, she stood glaring each time he was talking to a woman. Any woman. She then questioned all of us that she knew in turn about was he [with] X or sleeping with Y, etc. "

So I think the OP can feel secure that they have broken up, and his ex knows it. She doesn't accept it, but she knows she's not his girlfriend any more.

Why is OP's boyfriend behaving like this? Several possibilities. He was with this woman for years and had probably been conditioned by her to respond (OP has mentioned he is afraid for/of her since she threatens suicide etc.). Or maybe it does stroke his ego that she can't get over him. Probably more possibilities, but those are the ones that spring to my mind. Whatever the reason, it is not healthy for either of them, as well as the OP.

drizzlecake Wed 07-Nov-12 15:45:11

Can you move on Luminous? All this he said she said stuff feels like it's going round in circles. Can you imagine what you will be doing in 3/6/12 months time. Discuss and book a future holiday with DP, where you want to go, how long for, or book tickets for the theatre. Take everyone's attention off the possibly (or not) dying friend.

ThatBastardBabyJesus Wed 07-Nov-12 16:10:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 17:18:58

I agree the put your foot down thing. I was in a similarish situation in the early days of my relationship with DH - but in that case it was his DD. She was in her early 20s and had become a heroin addict. I stepped right back and let him deal with the situation in the best way he saw fit. This involved spending lots of time with her and his (very) ex wife and cosy drinks in the pub. I was not particularly comfortable with this - but it was his CHILD and she had more need of him at that time that I did.

It is ENTIRELY different in this case. He split from this woman - or at least says he has - and has no need at all to carry on with any relationship with her, sick or not. I personally would be making that perfectly plain. His loyalty SHOULD be with you. If it is not, then maybe this is not the relationship for you.

olgaga Wed 07-Nov-12 18:32:38

Yes, I agree with Kinky and others. I think he's the problem here, his behaviour and the way he appears to be manipulating you is plainly wrong.

RabidCarrot Wed 07-Nov-12 18:53:19

I really think he needs to tell her that you and he are in a relationship, Personally I think she is trying to pull a fast one as with the suicide threats.

I would put money on the fact she knows about you and this is why she is doing this

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 18:55:44

I disagree with the suggestion he is manipulating me. Obviously I am not explaining everything exactly because I am worried about any of us being identified. But -

~ I am entirely sure they have broken up. I overheard them talking once, around a corner so they couldn't have realized I would over hear. She was begging him to come back, saying she'd changed and she couldn't live without him. He rebuked her, told her to accept it and stop with the ridiculousness. I'm not the only one to have overheard such conversations.

~ She told me about considering visiting a doctor about a lump in her breast, so again, I don't think he is lying, if anyone is.

~ He is genuinely frightened of her taking her life. I highly doubt she would do anything - most likely make a half hearted attempt to gain his attention, but she certainly wouldn't kill herself. However, I think this is something, again, he needs to work out for himself. Me saying "Oh come on, if she was going to do it, she would have by now!" is not going to help. Having a mental illness myself, and having had friends suffering, if anyone had told me that I was over reacting and should step back, I would be furious.

~ He told me right from the beginning of our relationship that he had issues with an ex. He has told me every time he has been to visit her. I am also friends with his flat mate, who would tell me if he had mentioned seeing her apart from the five times I know he has seen her in the whole of our relationship.

~ It is perhaps relevant to say that the last time he saw her was the illness reveal. She told him this after accusing him of being with another girl, having seeing him talking to her at the last works event we were all at, and after telling him that her brother (I think?) had seen him kissing someone in a bar recently (me).

~ I highly doubt he is screwing her. Both of them complained bitterly for the last year of their relationship about their sex life, by all accounts. So its not a "booty call" thing.

So are you all pretty convinced she is lying? Or at the very least being flexible with the truth?

Again, thank you for your inputs, even those posts that I have disagreed with hugely have given me another angle to look at things from, and I appreciate that.

Gigondas Wed 07-Nov-12 18:58:38

Yes I am pretty sure she is not telling the truth- if timing is as you say then it doesn't stack up.

diddl Wed 07-Nov-12 19:00:56

"He rebuked her, told her to accept it and stop with the ridiculousness"

So why does he keep going to see her?

It really makes no sense-as if he can´t quite let go either.

ClippedPhoenix Wed 07-Nov-12 19:03:29

But then that still leaves you where you are doesn't it OP.

Who is the common denomiator in all this? It isn't you is it?

The facts are you are with a man that hasn't declared he's with you which is ridiculous after a year, totally ridiculous.

I get the fact that where kids are concerned then maybe you have to take a back seat for a few months but there are no kids involved where he's concerned.

You are a bloody pawn in this, wake up.

It is perhaps relevant to say that the last time he saw her was the illness reveal. She told him this after accusing him of being with another girl, having seeing him talking to her at the last works event we were all at, and after telling him that her brother (I think?) had seen him kissing someone in a bar recently (me).

This is the bit that makes me suspicious. The illness coming so soon after she had seen him talking to a girl.

Marne Wed 07-Nov-12 19:06:37

Sorry i havn't read the whole thread (just the first and the last page), i find some of it a bit odd. She is his ex and they split quite a while ago, even if she does have cancer she should not be using it as a reason to get closer to your dp. If i found out i was ill i would not want support from a ex (wouoldn't want someone to feel they had to be with me because i'm ill). Also the dates dont add up (from dx to chemo etc..).

I would be worried, maybe sugest to your dp that he goes with her to her next appointment (just to see how she reacts and if she agrees). She sounds as though she may have mh issues (what with the suicide threats) so you need to tread carefuly. It must be hard for you though, not sure how i would cope if dh's ex was behaving like this (well i know dh would not offer her any support as he hates her guts). <hugs>

Doha Wed 07-Nov-12 19:08:22

Time you were outed as they say OP.
Your relationship is being treated as a dirty little secret and after a year you deserve better than this.

Have you asked your DP when he intends to tell her--if ever. He is not protecting her, he is protecting himself.
Could it be it does give him a bit of a kick to have 2 females lusting after him and that he actualy enjoys this adoration and attention from her.?

olgaga Wed 07-Nov-12 19:11:32

Well we can only guess about whether she is lying or not. We have even less information than you! Time will tell on that. You are focussing on whether she's lying or not as though it was the most important thing. It's not.

The most important thing is the fact that whatever the truth of what she's saying, he's listening!

He's chosen to keep you a secret.

That's your problem - not whether she's lying - or even dying.

dysfunctionalme Wed 07-Nov-12 19:21:26

He is genuinely frightened of her taking her life. I highly doubt she would do anything - most likely make a half hearted attempt to gain his attention, but she certainly wouldn't kill herself.

Actually you cannot know whether or not she would kill herself. You may think you know but you do not. And it is not healthy for you or your ex to modify your behaviour according to your beliefs or suspicions, you need to use facts. If she voices suicidal thoughts, the right thing to do is to notify mental health care or police. Being "frightened" or disbelieving is pointless.

Same with the cancer, you need to put aside the amateur detective carry on and go with the facts. She is his ex. He needs to detach. Adjusting one's life to another's on threat of illness or death is never healthy. We die as we have lived and we live as we die. So whether or not she is dying, she will remain manipulative/stalkerish and whether or not she is dying your partner will continue to be manipulated. Until one of them decides to change. But the only control you have in this is over your own behaviour. If you are uncomfortable with your partner's involvment, you need to voice it and give him opportunity to change.

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 19:26:17

He's playing you, LL. You don't think he is, but by continuing to see this woman, not telling her about you and him, involving you in all this ridiculous and immature drama (Is he 18? People act like this sometimes when they're young, most outgrow it) he is getting something out of it.

And it isn't you.

It has nothing to do with your own mental health or even you at all. It's about him feeding off the drama of two grown women. That is not healthy, at all, for you (sod him).

She told him this after accusing him of being with another girl

confused you can't 'accuse' someone of something that they are perfectly entitled to do? And 'another' girl would suggest more than one girl in your DPs life - in other words, her.

I am not suggesting that he has been anything other than honest with you and I realise that you might have been sumarising using your own words, but if that was the tone of what your DP told you, he really needs to be clear to her that she can't 'accuse' him of anything as she is not connected to his relationships and it's ridiculous that he didn't retaliate by telling her the 'other' girl was his partner. She might actually back off a bit if she realises he is in a serious relationship. As long as she believes he is single, she has hope, which isn't fair on her or you.

Anyway - that's all an aside for now.

I would push for him to get clear answers about her diagnosis. If she is lying - there is even more reason for him to be clear that he is in a serious relationship, if she is not, it is important that your DP understands exactly how 'bad' things are. Cynical as it sounds if she is not lying but has exagerated, there is the danger that she has him at her beck and call for years - literally.

He should support her in the way that a friend would. Of course he should, but it shouldn't consume your lives.

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 19:40:14

Sorry Jaded, that bit was phrased badly, I meant that she had named another woman, other than me. Who actually happens to be gay hmm She is amazingly suspicious.

Not young, they're both mid forties. Though not saying those of you about forty are old wink

Doha, like I said upthread, he was going to tell her, and then she said this. Which I admit is one of the reasons I am suspicious. I think she guessed what was coming, and so came out with something drastic enough to stop him from telling her the last thing she wanted to hear.

I know since the diagnosis she has asked him to visit more, and he has refused. And that he has told her that we are very close.

I do agree that he is doing more harm than good by allowing her to continue to indulge in her "we will skip off into the sunset" delusion by not telling her he is with someone. TBH I don't care whether he names me or not, but actually just for her state of mind, she should know he isn't available.

It all feels very messy.

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 19:46:02

'It all feels very messy.'

Because it is, and there is only one person who is making it so. That is your boyfriend. You think he's nice? I don't. I don't think a person who does this to a girlfriend who obviously cares for him a great deal is nice.

He is an adult and so is she. You break up. She clings on. You tell her in NO uncertain terms that it's O-V-E-R and please move on. Then you cut all contact because she is too unstable to be friends. If she continues, it is stalking and you get the police involved.

But you don't keep visiting, being involved, or have a relationship with someone else and keep it a secret.

Can you see that? That is ridiculous, melodramatic, immature, and very, very warped.

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 19:46:20

It seems to be all about her! If she is genuinely ill then that is very sad. The thing is this HAS NOTHING TO DO AT ALL with you and your DP. Absolutely nothing. He doesn't need to see her, support her or or do anything, and YOU OP should not need to give her any headspace at all. Either she is his EX or she is not. WHY does he keep going to visit her? I have never visited any of my ex bfs once let alone half a dozen times.

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 19:47:35

I think it's all about him. People do what works, and on some level, he is getting something out of his behaviour or he would change it.

BellaTheGymnast Wed 07-Nov-12 19:48:48

Sorry to repeat myself, but you said she asked a group of you who he was seeing, why didn't you tell her?

MrsTomHardy Wed 07-Nov-12 19:52:54

I agree Expat....great posts....

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 19:53:54

Bella, she asked about each other. She asked me about Y, asked Y about X and asked X about me, for example. And when she asked me about this other woman, it was after I had witnessed her having a melt down over the fact she wasn't with DP any more, so I was actually concerned for her mental well being. Even if she had asked me outright, "Are you with him?", I really don't know what I would have said.

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 20:00:35

But you don't need to be concerned about her - that is the point. She is NOT your problem.

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 20:04:53

What reason does your dp give for visiting her still?

She might well be lying, but take away the fact that she has told your DP she has cancer - their relationship is completely inappropriate, I am just gobsmacked at what you have and are putting up with.

It really is simple - he is not responsible for her state of mind or happiness - any normal person would say 'sorry if you don't want to hear it, ex, but I've moved on, I'm living with LL, I don't want to see you anymore' - and that's about it really. You don't 'protect' someone by lying to them and pretend you are not in a relationship - you just don't. Not unless you are twisted, anyway.

I'd question your entire relationship before you even get to her declaration of being ill. If she is telling the truth then that is terribly sad for her - but ultimately, without wishing to sound cold, it is nothing to do with you, and it should be nothing to do with your partner, her ex. I'd feel very sad if any past partner of mine were so ill - but I'm not part of their lives and to involve myself would be totally inappropriate.

NigellaLawless Wed 07-Nov-12 20:10:22

Ok this is going to sound incredibley cruel and I May well be roasted alive for it but here goes...

If (and its a big if) she really is terminally ill why doesn't your ex tell her about you? What's the worst that could happen?

Believe me i cringed when writing that but seriously its something to be considered!

I agree with the poster (sorry I cent mind post easily again on phone to get ur name) who said the only problem you actually have is dating a guy who keeps you a secret! That's all it boils down to!

You deserve better than this!

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 20:13:45

What Porto said.

She and her mental health and her life are your problem because you are involved with a person who makes them his problem. Why? Who knows? But he is getting something out of it or wouldn't behave as he does.

And it is costing you. You may not realise it, but it is.

scottishmummy Wed 07-Nov-12 20:20:23

essentially this is about your dp and ex,not much your call I'm afraid
he needs to ascertain facts,what appts,clinic etc does she have.has it been corroborated by reliable external source?
as his dp you need to know what happening but not get directly involved. but you can legitimately ask him why he's not discussed he in relationship with you

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 20:27:36

Nigella, if she is telling the truth, TBH I would then be the one saying to him not to tell her. Because if she is dying, what time she has left should be as pain reduced as possible. And that doesn't mean him swearing eternal love to her, but continuing to lie would be better than adding to what she would already be facing.

I do think he is slightly suspicious of what she has said, and that that is why he is going to see her soon. He was supposed to be going tonight, but she has something on she had forgotten about. I guess once he's visited we will both be able to work out what we think is going on.

Is it possible for terminal breast cancer to be diagnosed as such without operations / only a few sessions of chemo?

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 20:30:31

i would think it HIGHLY unlikely unless she has been very poorly recently. WHY is he going to visit her?

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 20:31:09

She certainly has not had 3 rounds of chemo in 7 weeks.

IamtheZombie Wed 07-Nov-12 20:32:00

Luminous, please go back and re-read my original post. That is how Breast Cancer (terminal or not) is diagnosed.

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 20:34:15

'Is it possible for terminal breast cancer to be diagnosed as such without operations / only a few sessions of chemo? '

From what I understand, no. My ex MIL died of lung cancer. She'd originally had breast cancer, though. Went through loads of treatment, operations. Then she got lung cancer in August about 3 years later. Started treatment. It didn't affect the primary tumour and there was metastisis. At this point, she was terminal. But that was a couple of months after she was diagnosed.

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 20:35:26

But that's by the by. What is pertinent is how he is behaving. It is very warped.

olgaga Wed 07-Nov-12 20:39:04

I doubt that anyone here will be able to tell you as a matter of fact whether it is possible to diagnose it or not. You will have to wait and see about that.

This your focus at the moment but I don't really think that's the issue.

The issue is the way your DP has handled this whole situation from the outset, treating both you and her with a complete lack of respect in my view.

She should have been told that he was in a relationship with you long before now. You should have told her when you had the chance - it's your relationship too, not just his! I'm not sure why you didn't. You are all adults.

He has denied her whatever chance she had of moving on from the final realisation that he won't be coming back.

Unless it suited him to keep his options open.

Either way, I think his behaviour is cavalier and self-serving at best.

LuminousLaces Wed 07-Nov-12 20:53:21

I think he visits to pacify her more than anything else. Ever few weeks / months he gets a rant out of no where from her, declaring that he should delete her number as she hates him, that he never cared about her, and that she wants to move on. So then he doesn't contact her. And soon after that, he'll get another onslaught along the lines of "You never contact me / you are such a heartless bastard / you never visit me / I am entirely alone so there is no point me being alive". He then contacts her saying "No, I do care about you, but only as a friend". Then the cycle starts again shortly after.

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 20:55:46

so he should change his phone no. End of.

EMS23 Wed 07-Nov-12 20:59:40

It sounds like your DP seeks out women who need him. You have mental health issues and this ex of his needs him so much he has to lie about you etc..
He loves the drama, he loves the attention. He's your problem, not her.

BellaTheGymnast Wed 07-Nov-12 21:06:21

I had a boyfriend who was similarly in thrall to his ex, it was a nightmare. What a situation to be in OP. I don't think the ex knows about OP, if she did I think she'd be challenging the DP about it.

Kundry Wed 07-Nov-12 21:06:31

Nobody can guarantee it doesn't take 7 weeks however:

She makes apt at GP - 1 week
She gets appointment at breast clinic - 1 week
She goes to 1st treatment appointment - 1 week
Has first cycle of treatment - takes more than 1 week
2 more cycles of chemo and a scan to show it isn't working - we have run out of weeks

Unless chemo has been stopped because she is so ill - but she wouldn't be out then, would she?

She texts " "You never contact me / you are such a heartless bastard / you never visit me / I am entirely alone so there is no point me being alive"."

To which the correct response is "We split up two years ago, of course I don't contact you / We split up two years ago, go away you stalker / We split up two years ago, of course I don't visit you / We split up two years ago, you are not alone, you have a teenaged daughter who would be horrified to hear you say that".

I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt as to why he behaves in this way. They were together some years were they not, OP? And he was on the receiving end of some pretty heavy-duty emotional abuse from her for probably most of it. She has conditioned him to respond to her rants (anything for a quiet life) and to fear what she might do. She has damaged him.

So all three of you have emotional problems that are, frankly, hurting each other. This mad situation has to stop if any of you are to have any chance of normality, and the best way to do that is for him to be honest and tell her he is with you, has been for a year, and is never coming back to her.

SolidGoldYESBROKEMYSPACEBAR Wed 07-Nov-12 21:18:49

To give the bloke the benefit of the doubt, if this woman is as self-obsessed and manipulative as she sounds (which is perfectly plausible, some women are horrible) then he is reacting like any other victim of emotional abuse: struggling to detach, blaming himself, still searching for the magic button to make it all all right.

He's being a bit of a wuss in not telling her to go fuck herself with a shitty stick, but he was probably the type to try and please everyone before she did the business on him, and it's just intensified.

So really, the bottom line is it might actually be best for you, OP, to walk away and leave him to it. Because you need to consider your own well-being in all this, and until your P sorts himself out a bit and detaches from the mad cow, he is not really in a position to have a proper relationship with you. And if you have MH issues, being constantly embroiled in someone else's drama is not going to do you all that much good.

savemefromrickets Wed 07-Nov-12 21:24:40

Poor you. I'm in the cynical camp too but that's based on personal experience from when DP's ex (who can't let go) said there was something seriously wrong with her, which materialised into nothing. She has also threatened suicide so I know how you feel on that score.

Like you my health is causing some concern, which only annoys me the more as she gets lots of attention (the night my diagnosis moved on a step I didn't hear from DP at all as she was threatening suicide and he spent the evening on the phone to her).

I can't really say what I think on the subject to him as they have kids and if he stands up to her she threatens to withdraw access. You are not in that position so I'd try saying what you think. It's not nice of him to give her false hope just as it's actually not nice of my DP to shrug off the suicide threats - these people need help from people who have the capacity to genuinely care about them and not half arsed help from men who can't bear being thought of as anything other than nice.

MyLittleFireBird Wed 07-Nov-12 21:38:54

Is it possible for terminal breast cancer to be diagnosed as such without operations / only a few sessions of chemo?
I can't comment on the chemo part, but a friend had breast cancer diagnosed and was told it was incurable within days (it had spread to her liver and bones). She did not have the primary tumour removed or a mastectomy - no operations on her breast(s). I think she had palliative chemo, but can't remember the timeline of that.

SecretNutellaFix Wed 07-Nov-12 21:40:21

Was she emotionally abusive to him while they were in the relationship?

If this was the other way around most of us would recognising the control and need to control his relationships as EA.

Your dp needs to take a step back from this manipulative whingebag, and he needs to recognise that this completely dysfunctional relationship between his ex and him is not normal. She is a bunny boiler, or at least well on the way to becoming one.

Spero Wed 07-Nov-12 21:48:07

You now have 10 pages, all saying pretty much exactly the same thing.

And yet on we go, round and round in circles. I think you are all enabling each other and none of you really want to get out of this.

I hope I am wrong, but I don't think I am. Best of luck with everything. But remember that no decision is a decision in itself.

thenightsky Wed 07-Nov-12 21:51:47

OP... What are the lies you know about already? Are they along similar lines, ie designed to get other people/ex to jump to her attention?

kinkyfuckery Wed 07-Nov-12 21:56:30

Jesus Christ, why do the pair of you seem completely oblivious to the fact that he is a dickhead?

Corygal Wed 07-Nov-12 22:03:06

OP - hell, I know someone IRL to whom the same thing happened - ie her new fiance was told by his ex that she was about to snuff it from cancer.

Thing is, the ex had made something of a one-woman cabaret of the divorce, and was so, er, excitable, that even her own children didn't know if it was a try-on. Pretty low, do admit.

Fiance man was in a quandary and wanted to postpone the wedding. He's a GP and even he couldn't tell whether it was true or not. But mate had arranged a surprise wedding, which he went through with, so that was that.

Anyway, it turned out the ex did have cancer, but was entirely cured six months later. Children rather keener than they might have been on their new stepmother, which is nice.

So the moral is a) cancer is a spectrum of illness not the chop, whatever anyone (inc the victim) might say or think b) can DP find out what the daughter thinks is going on.

Portofino Wed 07-Nov-12 22:32:58

kinky - You have put it so well - I am in awe grin

expatinscotland Wed 07-Nov-12 23:03:50

What Spero and kinky said.

HoolioHallio Wed 07-Nov-12 23:20:53

With regards the lies about the diagnosis, it is perfectly possible for someone to present to their GP or A&E with a fractured bone, which can show up on X ray as a bony secondary. A simple CT scan can then confirm the presence of a primary tumour in the breasts for example with more secondary disease in the liver or lungs. Extensive secondary involvement would usually preclude a patient from any prolonged or aggressive treatment for the primary cancer. Lung cancers and bowel cancers are other examples of cancers which are sometimes only diagnosed after a patient becomes symptomatic with metastatic (spread) of the cancer.
It is very possible that her story is true.

diddl Thu 08-Nov-12 06:55:44

I think that kinky has it!

MsArseBiscuit Thu 08-Nov-12 06:58:08

I will just add that ( and please bear in mind that I'm with the majority on this one and I think she is being economical with the truth at the very least ) if she were to be diagnosed with advanced disease by chance as a result of finding cancer spread to her bones, bone metastases themselves are not incompatible with longer term survival.

RabidCarrot Thu 08-Nov-12 07:01:34

As they have no children he has NO reason to be getting in to her shit.
If she says she is going to kill herself then he should call her bluff (because that is all it is)
if she tells him she is dying he should say go on then,

Really if he had no feelings for her then he would not be asking how high when she says jump, and by keeping you a "dirty little secret" he is doing no good at all, she needs to be told to fuck off get out of it and he needs to grow a pair

Proudnscary Thu 08-Nov-12 07:08:46

I've just read the whole thread and all your posts OP and I do not believe your partner is telling you the whole truth here.

There is NO reason for any grown man to be visiting his ex with whom he has no children, no matter what you or he says, no matter what she's threatened. A normal guy who is not stringing her along or shagging her would have told her in no uncertain terms that the relationship was over.

He would be mature and wise enough to know that someone this manipulative will never be satiated and that we cannot be responsible for other people's actions (ie suicide threats) - and would want to run a mile from her.

I'm not going to comment on the cancer aspect because we just don't know and because actually I think it's far less relevant than you think.

Your partner is at worst a liar and at best a weak character who will let you down in the future, of that I'm sure.

Proudnscary Thu 08-Nov-12 07:10:16

X post with Rabid who has put it more succintly and rather more fabulously bluntly!

Offred Thu 08-Nov-12 07:14:09

Personally I think whatever it is, whether he is stringing her along or whether he is trying to be kind to someone he believe is dying, whether she is lying or telling the truth, whether he/she is after a relationship, it doesn't matter.

You aren't well yourself and you need the support of your partner. It is not unreasonable for you to expect that support and I think if he is more focused on his ex than you during a time of need, if you feel you can't ask for those needs to be supported, I think let him go and focus on her and you focus all your efforts on yourself. Don't martyr yourself because of him.

ThatBastardBabyJesus Thu 08-Nov-12 07:23:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

I have read the whole thread and you have had some fantastic advice and information.
I want to echo the last few posts, especially kinky's

If this all turns out to be a lie, what do you think your dp will do? Cut contact? Or will he be hurt, upset and confused by his exes betrayal? Just how long are you willing to put up with being one of three in this relationship.

It may sound harsh but I would be giving him an ultimatum. Even though she may be ill. If it all turns out to be lies it will be very easy for him to 'choose' you, I'd be interested to know who he would choose right now, if he had to pick.

JurassicFart Thu 08-Nov-12 13:41:52

I also think that as lovely etc as your DP is he is not doing you or his ex any favours.

As others have said:

1. Why is he STILL visiting her after two fecking years?! This is crazy. If she's having trouble letting go he's really not helping her by showing up on the scene on a regular basis.

2. After a whole year together you deserve to be acknowledged as your DP's partner to his ex.

At best he's being really naive, at worst, disingenuous.

I have no idea about the timeline for breast cancer, although my mum has had it (thankfully caught early). It is just horrible for everyone involved. Big hugs and thanks to those suffering.

My best friend's ex told her he had a brain tumour - she'd just broken up with him and was moving to another town. She was beside herself - until she happened to bump into the ex's brother ... who had no idea what she was on about. Cancer is horrible; anyone who lies about it must be morally bankrupt.

mouldyironingboard Thu 08-Nov-12 15:18:10

Whether the ex has cancer or not isn't the problem here.

What is worrying is that your partner is putting his ex first instead of making your relationship his priority. He isn't being fair to either of you at the moment as if he really cares for you he would cut all contact with her.

If she is really so crazy that she is likely to kill herself he should alert someone medical and get her sectioned. It sounds like she's an expert at emotional blackmail and he is allowing the situation to continue. Tell him to ignore her completely.

In the past, my DH's ex has tried a similar tactic saying 'I'm ill, I need you, if you really care about me you'll do xyz (usually asking for extra money)' etc. We always ignore her otherwise it's like feeding a very needy troll!

LuminousLaces Thu 08-Nov-12 15:41:57

Thanks all again for your input, plenty to think about.

As much as I am the first to admit my DP is not perfect, and has like everyone his flaws, I do understand why he is still visiting her. Again, this is maybe because of my mental health understanding, and have seen myself how volatile she is, and why he is worried about her. That said, I have thought for quite some time he isn't helping her - or himself - by visiting, though he had been reducing all his contact with her gradually.

I do understand what you are saying, and to some level get how it must look, but because I know both of them, it does make sense to me why is he doing what he is doing.

Again, when I was asked by her about who he was seeing, I didn't tell her it was me because I really believe she is mentally unstable enough do herself some damage, or at least upset him enough into thinking that.

And really... I don't think it matters if she knows. Part of me does get frustrated with it at times, but everyone else knows, so I don't feel like a big dark secret. However, most of me feels that she would kick up such a fuss if she did find out, that actually it would give her more power over him, and more impact on our relationship than she already has. I am not hidden away or anything; we go out together, we go on holiday, he is openly affectionate with me in public. Its just one person.

I do firmly believe that he is trying to protect her - but also feel that he is possibly not achieving that. Yet understand what he is frightened of. She is a grown woman, and should be trusted enough with the truth, but her reaction to a lot of things is not logical. I can see both sides (as can he, we have discussed it) and understand why he has drawn this conclusion. Letting her speculate he is seeing various women, confirming to her he is dating... Its then a big leap to naming one person and saying he's in a relationship.

I can't tell say what the big lies she's told in the past are as they might identify us (and if she is actually ill and hasn't told certain people yet, I wouldn't want to destroy her privacy). But they were big, harsh, and she got caught out. Some I witnessed myself, some I was warned about by friends, and others I heard of via the management team. Knowing what she had said and done whilst they were together, and afterwards, would hurt him, and I don't want to be the one to do that. If people who have known him longer than I have have decided its better he doesn't know, then I trust that judgement.

Agreed. Even if she does have cancer, your ex is not the right person to support her through it.

But why does he need to protect her? He is not her partner. He's not even really a friend, he sees her because he has to whether through guilt or emotional blackmail.

Maybe i'm being harsh, and I too have suffered mental illness. But she is not your's or your DPs responsibility and by carrying on with this odd situation for the last two years your DP has probably made it worse, not better. sad

mouldyironingboard Thu 08-Nov-12 16:03:27

However ill or unstable the ex is, I think it would be much better for your DP just to tell her that he is in a relationship with you. Don't you think it will be much worse if she finds out she has been lied to for a year?

Being completely cynical if the ex really has terminal cancer in her weakened state, she will be much too ill to be thinking about your DP or bothering him again.

If she harms herself it is not you or your DP's fault and it will be her decision to do so. You haven't caused her illness and you are not responsible for it any more than she is responsible for your DP's wellbeing. It's time for your DP to move on and leave his ex in the past where she belongs.

expatinscotland Thu 08-Nov-12 16:14:57

If she's that unstable and has a teen daughter, then the proper authorities need to be alerted.

It is not your responsibility or your boyfriend's. He is making it so. Why? That's not healthy for anyone.

LuminousLaces Thu 08-Nov-12 16:22:14

Daughter doesn't live with her, expat.

I think he is still very much used to feeling responsible for her. He has got a lot better over the time we've been together, and I think she realised this, which is why she suddenly has a serious health problem.

He would be devastated if he was the reason she killed herself, I suspect is what it boils down to. So he's trying to pacify her enough so that she doesn't threaten to again, whilst trying to withdraw from her at the same time.

I had a crazy ex years back who threatened to kill himself, and do remember all the emotions it brought up for me, and that was without him having attempted it / given any indicator of being capable of doing that before hand, which she has.

expatinscotland Thu 08-Nov-12 16:26:48

'would be devastated if he was the reason she killed herself, I suspect is what it boils down to. So he's trying to pacify her enough so that she doesn't threaten to again, whilst trying to withdraw from her at the same time.'

He is not and wouldn't be even if she did it. She is very, very disturbed.

She needs to be reported to the authorities, because his continued involvement in her life is not doing her any favours.

She needs serious professional help and I'll bet if any professional knew what he was doing they'd advise him to stop immediately because it is not helping her at all.

Or you.

He sounds like a man who needs to have someone to rescue or save in his life, someone who is co-dependent. That's not healthy at all.

mouldyironingboard Thu 08-Nov-12 16:26:50

That's my point luminous, he wouldn't be the reason she killed herself. It will only ever be her choice to take her life. Your DP will never be able to pacify her enough unless he goes back to her. It will be better for everyone if he starts being honest with her.

If she did kill herself, HE wouldn't be the reason, she would! He isn't responsible for someone else's actions.
She has got a ridiculous hold over him. And it's really unhealthy for him to continue enabling it

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 08-Nov-12 17:38:57

When is he going to see her?

Who does her DD live with?

RabidCarrot Thu 08-Nov-12 17:59:18

But he can not be responsible for this crazy woman, he owes her nothing.

Whether she has cancer or not or whether she is going to top herself or not are not his problems. Despite acting like a petulant child she is an adult and needs to deal with herself

LuminousLaces Thu 08-Nov-12 18:07:01

No idea who the DD lives with, just that she doesn't have much contact with her mum.

When she (ex) cancelled on him, he just said, "Okay". She hasn't suggested another date to go down, and he hasn't offered one. So not sure. He will tell me when / if he does arrange something.

It is faintly ironic as he spends a lot of time encouraging me not to take on other peoples problems, or feel guilty for the choices they make, and yet can't put that into practice with her.

I do hope she is lying after all I've said on here. If she isn't I will feel absolutely disgusted with myself.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 08-Nov-12 18:32:38

LL - you have no reason to be 'disgusted with yourself' if she is lying. She has form & you are being very understanding, most of us would not be and would be making her prove it & telling your DP's to wise up! I honestly believe the best thing you could do right now would be to talk to some of the people who know what other lies she has told and get them to talk to him - before she makes an utter prat of him.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 08-Nov-12 18:33:58

She clearly has other friends/other support - she manages for months at a time without him... she just likes to keep yanking his chain and watching him come running sad She's treating him like a fool.

LuminousLaces Thu 08-Nov-12 20:15:55

No, sorry I meant I will feel disgusted with myself if I've said all this and she is telling the truth.

It did cross my mind, but I think before I get any of the other lies uncovered to him, he needs to visit her. Because this will either get the whole story, or will nag at the doubt he already has. Again, because if she really is ill, and all of her past comes up to bite her in the backside, that really wouldn't be fair.

I don't think she's telling the truth, but it is possible she has been ill for longer than she has told him / us about, and until he visits her he won't know.

We had a big talk last night about my health, which has put to rest my worries about not telling him.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 08-Nov-12 20:22:46

Sorry - I meant if she isn't lying.

Let us know how it goes.

Anyway, onto more important things, how are you doing health wise??

LuminousLaces Thu 08-Nov-12 20:40:22

Nothing that alcohol can't ease the worries of tonight smile

I am possibly putting more energy into worrying about her than I would if I didn't have things that I needed distracting from.

hiviolet Thu 08-Nov-12 20:53:38

What a screwed up situation you're in, LL. Your partner must get something out if being under his ex's thumb like this. He can't be doing this out of the goodness if his heart, he just can't. He must secretly enjoy the fact she's obsessed with him, because in all other respects she's totally unhinged.

You know what else is weird? You seem to see and speak with her loads and have to act like you're not the new girlfriend. You listen to them speak without them knowing. You have spoken to other people who can testify that both parties were unhappy with the sex when their relationship was dying.

Bloody hell. Your partner's last relationship looms SO LARGE in your life it's bizarre. And yet you seem to accept it as normal. I understand that your mental health issues clouds your judgement, but this is a massive cloud!

I don't even think the is she/isn't she lying thing is necessarily the most questionable thing about your relationship, you know?

perfumedlife Thu 08-Nov-12 21:02:52

You and your 'dp' are playing with this woman's reality and it's disgusting, especially if, as you say,, she already has a fragile grip on it.

LuminousLaces Thu 08-Nov-12 21:13:07

hiviolet, I have never instigated any of those conversations. Simply have heard them. Its normally things along the lines of, "I don't know why she's sobbing / shouting / fussing about him again, all she did when they were together was complain about him". I mentioned the sex aspect because someone suggested he was screwing her. Also, don't think he enjoys it, but is worried for her, and isn't sure how to leave her to her own means.

perfumed I'm sorry you think that.

perfumedlife Thu 08-Nov-12 21:57:34

So your bf (you don't live together do you? ) sees her the odd time at work, she calls him and he's been to visit her about five times this past year that you've dated him. She told him she had cancer, either in a call or in person and then that it was terminal. Why did he need to go over to her house to 'see what's going on' when he already knew?

I'm sorry for your own troubles with your health, I know how hard that can be. I just don't think you are facing up to how unhealthy your relationship is.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 08-Nov-12 22:23:02

Perfumed - your comment at 21.02 is nasty, the OP is definitely not playing with this woman's reality. Many of us agree what is going on is not healthy for any of them, but it is not out of malice on the OP's behalf. Secondly, it is not up to you to define their relationship, it is very rude to decide he is her bf not her dp because they don't live together. Rude & presumptious.

LL - I have an ex who is a bit like your DP, a people pleaser - doesn't want to hurt anyone, wants to 'make it right' for everyone (ironically fell into the same 'I'll kill myself' trap with a previous ex etc), sadly all they end up doing is hurting everyone, because it's simply not possible to please & be honest with everyone, it just isn't. When things are sorted out with her lying/not lying cancer situation, that's probably a conversation you need to have with him. I think there have been some horrible things said about him that probably aren't true (controlling/enjoying this/still seeing her etc) & it's hard when you know they he's a enuinely nice bloke, if a bit misguided. Try not to take it to heart, BUT, you will need to make him see that no-one can make everyone happy all the time and that he is compromising his integrity trying to do so.

Anyway, take care of yourself and maybe find another distraction x

IamtheZombie Thu 08-Nov-12 22:32:12

Excellent post, Chipping.

expatinscotland Thu 08-Nov-12 22:36:43

Excellent post, Chipping.

LL, your mental health is yours. So is hers. Why make hers yours, too, IYKWIM. You are not responsible for her mental health problems, she and her healthcare providers are.

That part that is your problem is that your boyfriend is making her mental health problems part of your life, too. You have enough on your plate with your own problems, and you are not responsible for hers, nor need nor deserve them.

If you can't find a way to divorce her problems and the ones that he brings to your life because of his continued involvement with her, then you deal with that with your healthcare professionals.

But this is not your fault. Even if she kills herself, which she probably won't, it is not your fault or your responsibility.

seaofyou Thu 08-Nov-12 22:59:08

most men who keep their GF's secret is because they have another one!

Why is your BF not telling his EX and possibly other's about you?

I have not read last few pages but this is suspicious and his need to keep in contact with EX is very Narc like!

It is also very unusual for someone who is terminally ill to want to 'kill themselves' over an EXBF rather than bigger issues ie their cancer!

ChippingInLovesAutumn Thu 08-Nov-12 23:08:03

seaofyou It's quite important to read all of a thread on the Relationships board, but if it's really too long, it's best to at least read the last few pages. Stomping in making accusations like that when you haven't is less than helpful. The OP is not being kept a secret in general, only to this one ex girlfriend. This one ex girlfried has said, in public, that they are no longer together. He's not telling the ex because she's threatened suicide in the past and he's scared she will go through with it. It's not Narc like hmm he's just being far too easily manipulated by his ex. through fear. She hasn't threatened suicide since she said about her 'cancer'.

LuminousLaces Fri 09-Nov-12 00:05:03

Thank you, Chipping and Expat especially.

I use DP instead of BF because BF always makes me think "best friend" whenever I read it on here.

Chipping I think you have DP sussed out entirely. He is a real people pleaser. He hates saying no to people, he feels like he's letting them down. Its one of his biggest credits and biggest failings, rolled together. She is also, of course, very aware of how he functions on this level, and I think she plays with his head very effectively. A talk is certainly needed, but don't think I can really work on that until whether we know she is telling the truth or not. If she is, its kind of a whole different ball game. Although he hasn't gone rushing off to her side immediately, which I am taking as a positive sign that he is still maintaining some distance from her. Thank you for your wise words and summarizing in my absence!!

Thank you Expat, you're quite right of course, and today I did try to do some work within myself about boundaries. I take on other peoples problems a lot, and its something I need to focus on.

seaofyou Fri 09-Nov-12 00:10:56

True Chip. Though all due respect Chip OP does not know 100% what is going on as never allowed to visit as kept a secret! No one knows 100% except DP and exGF..the EXGF said she is the GF initially though then said 'ex' in second breath.
LL maybe DP would benefit then from some assertiveness training or separation 'anxiety' counselling as 2 yrs is abnormal! This goes beyond norm of 'being nice' 'scared ex will do something' if it is the other way round and DP the victim in this?

LuminousLaces Fri 09-Nov-12 00:18:51

I wouldn't want to visit even if he suggested I went with him. Firstly as speaking to the woman for more than a few minutes starts to grate on my nerves, secondly I really don't know her well enough to just turn up with him (even if she knew about us and was fine with it!), and finally because if she is ill in the way she says she is, the last thing she needs right now is a practical stranger sat there whilst she's talking about something very difficult in her life.

I believe DP. He's got no reason to lie to me. If he was going to lie, he could easily just lie about visiting her all together.

I don't think he has "separation anxiety" or anything like that, and is perfectly capable of being assertive. He is genuinely frightened for her, and with good cause from what I've seen myself. I think he's dug himself into a bit of a hole to be honest, with no way out right now especially.

perfumedlife Fri 09-Nov-12 00:23:34

Well see, I think it is playing with someone's reality when you are colluding in lies that are clearly affecting them. It may not be out of malice, the motivation is hard to work out, I still think it's a disgusting way to carry on, and unhealthy for all. I don't presume to define anyone's relationship, would that I had such power! I mentioned bf because I couldn't see if they lived together and knowing if they did may have put a different spin on things.

Op I hope you get it sorted.

LuminousLaces Fri 09-Nov-12 00:37:23

Please refrain from insulting me, its the last thing I need right now. I am trying to make the best in a difficult situation, calling me disgusting really isn't constructive.

saffronwblue Fri 09-Nov-12 00:42:07

LL If the cancer issue had not come up, what was the plan for your DP and the ex? Is he going to lead his whole life not confronting her with the fact that he has moved on, in case she kills herself? I think that if this is the case then he is not in fact available for a relationship with someone new, ie you. What would happen if the two of you wanted to get married, or have a child? Would this be kept a secret?
I think she may well have cancer, but I doubt that she has been through the whole cycle through to prognosis, for all the sensible reasons others have
cited. She sounds like someone who seizes on drama, particularly if she wants to pull the reins on your DP.
I think you need to talk to DP about the secrecy of your relationship. It is like a kind of mad denial that you are all colluding in.
Hope your health is OK- sounds as if you have a lot on your plate.

seaofyou Fri 09-Nov-12 00:54:19

If this is a case of EA and control then can your DP do something like the Freedom Programme? They do it online I think?

He is allowing EXGF to remain in control.

Only DP can break this cycle by refusing to engage anymore....tricky time though to do it I must admit!

perfumedlife Fri 09-Nov-12 00:55:37

I did not call you disgusting. I said the lies were disgusting. Who actually talks like that, 'please refrain'? I'll leave you to the constructive advice of others. I hope when the woman does learn of your relationship you can handle the stress that brings. I just think your dp is shoring up bigger problems by doing this, and dragging you along. All the best.

seaofyou Fri 09-Nov-12 01:06:15

Yes LL perfume didn't mean you.

If EXGF is delusional perfume is right DP is feeding it rather than shattering those delusions by not saying 'I have a DP'.

LL try and step out of your shoes and put a Teddy in them and sit and look at it from outside looking in. You have been trapped in this too...maybe if you had counselling...to work out how you feel, need from DP and the future how to move on from this....as it is like you are all stuck in a tardis.

EugenesAxe Fri 09-Nov-12 02:29:10

I am a lesser person than you and your DP Luminous as I'm a bit 'whatever' about suicide threats.

There'd be no active vindictiveness on my part, but if she threatened it to my face, I'd probably just say 'Well, it's your decision. I'd be sorry but ultimately I'll still be with Luminous whether you're alive or not.'

As a very wise poster said earlier, if she does kill herself it will be solely down to her, and nothing to do with your DP. I pity her and she needs counselling, but he should not have to live with this guilt.

diddl Fri 09-Nov-12 07:19:22

Same here Eugene

She´s an ex of 2yrs.

For many people it wouldn´t be noticeable as they wouldn´t even be in their lives anymore.

springyspring Fri 09-Nov-12 07:22:21

What would make this difficult for me is the teenage daughter in the background. it's not as if it is just this woman, it's her daughter too. If she kills herself... well, I dont need to spell it out sad. Not that that is your, or his, ultimate responsibility, though it does hang the guillotine over him, rather.

It's a mess though, isn't it? You are being very amenable in all this OP. I get that you have a MH issue and some of your friends do/have too and, yes, it does make one more erm understanding about behavioural excesses. But this situation is so unhealthy. You're skulking around in the background like an apology because this woman has centre stage. You have particular health worries at the mo and you're not telling DP 'because you don't want to worry him' ?? that's just not right, it's all in the wrong order. Do you really want to be in a relationship with Mother Theresa in male form? Actually, you both sound like Mother Theresa (don't be offended): have you looked at codependency ?

bumhead Fri 09-Nov-12 07:36:40

This woman is not going to kill herself, if she was she would have done it by now, but even if she did, it's nothing to do with you or your DP.

I doubt she has cancer, although I am a cynic. A friends ex husband claimed to have a brain tumour which was terminal. This was when she was starting divorce proceedings. Was apparently going to be dead by Christmas. Well surprise! It was a Christmas miracle and 5 years later he is still with us! hmm
He was full of shit and just trying to manipulate a reaction out of her.
The timing of this woman's diagnosis suggests to me (and I hope I'm wrong) that she is also full of shit.
She sounds like the sort of woman that claims she is pregnant when she isn't.
Your DP needs to tell her he is in a relationship and stop stringing her along.
If she thinks he is single she will try all sorts to get a reaction out of him
It's two fucking years down the line!!
Think about it this way, if she does have cancer, is it really fair on her to believe that whatever time she has left will be spent with your DP?
It's just weird and he needs to extricate himself from this situation asap.
Whether she has cancer or not, she is clearly not well, but that has fuck all to do with you or your partner so tell her and let her family take care of her either way.

diddl Fri 09-Nov-12 07:48:00

Surely if he really thinks she might he should be getting some help & leaving them to it?

I´m afraid I think he sounds rather pathetic tbh.

BabsJansen Fri 09-Nov-12 08:18:47

But why would anyone e lie about TERMINAL illness though? You can't exactly back track on that can you so wouldnt achieve much.

I think you need to keep your distance

2rebecca Fri 09-Nov-12 08:33:39

As they have no kids there is no reason for him to keep in touch with her other than him wanting to.
Someone threatening to kill themself if you don't do what they want is a manipulative person who should be completely avoided, not pandered to, especially 2 years down the line.
If she has a terminal illness this should make him feel a bit sad but shouldn't be a reason for him to visit her.
She is his ex girlfriend, if she rants that he never visits then he replies "I don't visit because our relationship is over" and deletes her number.
Your boyfriend is the problem here, I'd also wonder why he chose to stay with a manipulative nutter for such a long time. Some men do enjoy all the drama and neediness.
If any boyfriend I had wouldn't detach himself from an ex and not tell his ex he was with me I would tell him to leave until he had sorted out his priorities and that I didn't want him to feel I was a dirty secret.
A relationship is either over or it isn't.

LuminousLaces Fri 09-Nov-12 09:06:26

Springy, I'll be honest I hadn't even thought of her daughter. You have a very good point there though, and it is another reason to be cautious.

I don't know which of (the three!) of us you are suggesting are codependent, but it made very interesting reading, thank you. I suspect it is more that he was on the receiving end of lies, threats, and several times where she did do herself damage during their relationship. He tried to end it several times, it was a huge thing for him to finally do it, despite all of her threats and hurting herself, and he is still backing off now. As for me, I am possibly over empathetic, and whilst I do have low self esteem / a need to please others, that has got better since being with him.

She refuses to access help because she won't acknowledge there is a problem. I know they did counselling courses together and seperately a handful of times over the course of their (seven year) relationship. He says she's a lot better know than she was, but still will not access help for what is obviously a mental health condition.

nkf Fri 09-Nov-12 09:16:09

I don't understand why everyone assumes it's the ex who is manipulative. The boyfriend might be stringing both women along. In my opinion - and this is hugely sexist - I think men rarely do anything they don't want to do where women are concerned. If he's in contact with her, it's probably because he wants to be.

HecatePropylaea Fri 09-Nov-12 09:31:37

Thing is, even if he thinks he is being kind to her, he is wrong. He is being very, very cruel.

They've been split up for what? two years? and in that time he has maintained the pretence that he is single? "seeing people" aka having dates is not the same as being in a relationship with someone. It's casual. It implies he's not found anyone he wants to settle down with.

So she may have convinced herself that he is single, and only going on the odd date here and there which has never become a relationship because he does still love her, and that if only she can do/say the 'right' thing, they'll get back together.

Which is cruel to her. It may be easier for him, but it's cruel to her.

I think you have to consider the possibility that he's avoiding telling her because it is easier for him to not have to and to therefore not have to deal with her reaction.

She needs to know that he has moved on. That he isn't dipping a toe in the water, isn't having the odd date, isn't comparing every woman to her, isn't still in love with her.

If she has convinced herself of that, then she's not going to be able to move on, and that is the cruelest thing that he could do to her. far crueler than telling her the truth and accepting that that is going to cause her pain.

EugenesAxe Fri 09-Nov-12 09:41:41

nkf no I disagree; I trust Luminous' judgement on this. I know many sensitive men who would be concerned in the way her DP is. My DH was incredibly hurt by his ex-W but he still insists on keeping momentos of the happy times they had together. I know though that now he wouldn't touch her with a barge-pole, in an emotional sense, and I have never worried he harbours affection for her.

He just values times and people that have once given him happiness, even if later down the line they shat all over it.

I think Hectates insight is more likely - he's conflict-avoiding. Not a Libra is he LL? grin

nkf Fri 09-Nov-12 09:43:34

Concerned about cancer yes. But not staying in touch and pretending to be single. I don't rate that as sensitive. I think that is dishonest.

MrsMuddyPuddles Fri 09-Nov-12 11:47:13

If she mentions suicide again, your DP should call the police. If she is both honestly suicidal AND refusing to admit there is a problem let alone access help, she needs to have that help forced on her, through Social Services and sectioning, if needed.

This is too big for ONE person to handle alone, as hard as your DP might try. He needs to back off and if he really cares about who she was (or even about her in the present), he would seek out professional help for her. If only through an anon call to Mind/The Samaritans to get advice on how to help another person through
a difficult time--the breakup, as that's the underlying issue, whether or not she has cancer, whether or not the end is near for her--

Good luck

nkf Fri 09-Nov-12 12:19:18

Should he call the police? What can they do? Social services I could understand. But it's not a crime to threaten suicide.

HecatePropylaea Fri 09-Nov-12 12:27:53

No, but the police will go round and break the door down if they have to if they have reason to believe someone is in there and is dying. They'd certainly go round and check on her.

CinnabarRed Fri 09-Nov-12 12:32:50

And, strictly, it is still a crime to commit suicide in this country.

nkf Fri 09-Nov-12 12:33:33

Really? I thought that law was changed ages ago.

MrsTittleMouse Fri 09-Nov-12 12:36:10
CinnabarRed Fri 09-Nov-12 12:37:33

Oh, OK. It certainly was when my DF killed himself because the coroner specifically said. But that was 20 years ago.

diddl Fri 09-Nov-12 13:35:01

My husband had a stalker.

She phoned him at work & said she would kill herself if he didn´t see her.

He phoned the police.

They went round to check on her.

mutny Fri 09-Nov-12 14:17:38

Oh my god diddl.

Did he hear from her again?

OP how old is this woman?

This is ridiculous. Has he called her parents yet?

diddl Fri 09-Nov-12 14:26:53

She was sectioned & then called him again to fetch her when released!!!

He didn´t obviously.

thegreylady Fri 09-Nov-12 16:41:11

I would be suspicious of the timing it doesnt ring true at all.
I have / had breast cancer
dx early October
operation 24th October
started chemo early December
finished chemo May
radiotherapy for 3 weeks starting 3 weeks after chemo finished.
After 3 chemos [usually 6 or 8] they wouldnt know if it was working.
Has she lost her hair?Has she had scans?

LuminousLaces Fri 09-Nov-12 16:51:04

Yes he is a Libra actually grin And thank you for trusting my judgement EA smile

nkf Simply I think he is way too much of a people pleaser to be manipulative. And do think your comment is sexist; know just as many crappy women as I do crappy men.

She asks every time they talk - even if its a works thing - about them getting back together. He is very firm with her, but I do agree it would actually be easier on her in the long run if she knew he was with someone.

I don't know how he handled the situations in the past when she self harmed / threatened suicide, its not something we have talked about. But considering she has always refused to access help and denied she has any problems, I doubt there were any professional teams involved at all. I don't know how he would handle it now.

Diddl how horrible for your DH. I hope he is okay.

munty she's mid forties.

LuminousLaces Fri 09-Nov-12 16:53:35

greylady I'm sorry to hear that - and I hope you are doing okay.

All I know about the medical side of things is what I have posted, and won't know any more until he goes to see her, whenever that is.

EugenesAxe Fri 09-Nov-12 18:24:38

On reflection I sounded patronising with that last comment - I didn't mean to; apologies if you had a hmm moment reading it.

LuminousLaces Fri 09-Nov-12 20:17:49

I didn't read it that way, don't worry. smile

Portofino Fri 09-Nov-12 21:10:59

Luminous, you seem to missing the point that HE HAS NO REASON to go see her. To be respectful to you, these visits must stop. No matter how nice you are (very) and how bad he feels. It must stop! The cancer is a red herring. It is nothing to do with either of you in your life together.

Portofino Fri 09-Nov-12 21:16:09

My ex for example, according to friends, lives a complete miserable existence with his new wife. Whether her or his behaviour is at fault is NOWT to do with me. And especially not to do with my DH. I feel for him if he is miserable, as I consider him to be a nice bloke. And if he was dying/died, I would feel a bit sad. I would not, however, dream of going to visit, ringing him or anything, because he is my ex.

scottishmummy Fri 09-Nov-12 21:18:53

your p still feels a connection or need with ex
hence the contacts, the habitual dramas
the reason he's not told her you are his significant partner

OP do you have an ex partner that you were with for say, more than a few months?

Can you imagine investing this amount of time/effort/emotion in them? Really? Even if they were sick?

Were your ex to be 'clingy', would you hide your current relationship from them?

AWhaleOfATime Sat 10-Nov-12 07:14:55

shock at some of these answers.
So 'he is an ex, I still think he is a nice bloke but even if he was going to die, I wouldn't have anything to do with him'.

What has happen to normal human compassion?

OP, I don't really have anything new to add. I hope that you (and your DP) will be able to get to the bottom of this. Hopefully if she is lying, this will be brought to light.

rocamadour Sat 10-Nov-12 09:31:41

I think she's lying too. I had a diagnosis of bc 4 years ago. Here's my timetable:
Mid June - diagnosis via ultrasound and biopsy (massive bruise and dressing applied after that hmm
Rest of June: further scans, blood tests etc.
Late June: start chemo. Like another poster I was on Fec, every three weeks.
Mid July: dramatic 100% hair loss
September: came to end of 4x FEC regime. I think I had a scan then (no earlier) to check chemo response.
Sept: moved onto Taxol 12x weekly doses
Jan x mastectomy and removal of lymph nodes. More scans
Feb: radiotherapy
Feb: tamoxifen

Has this ow lost her hair ? Fec is commonly given (its a combo of 3 drugs) and hair loss is almost inevitable. If not Fec, which regime ??

But even if she's not lying, he should still be clear to her that you and he are in a relationship hmm

LuminousLaces Sat 10-Nov-12 13:20:03

AWhale, I agree. If it was me, and any of my exes became ill, even the ones that have hurt me badly in the past, then I would do everything I could do help them. Maybe this makes me a soft touch, I don't know. But I understand why he can't just leave her to get on with it.

I don't know if she's lost her hair. She did have clip in hair extensions in when I saw her in September, but it wasn't noticeably thinner or anything.

I felt very down about it all last night. I was so suspicious when he first told me, and with everything people have said on here, that's not without reason. But it is possible that despite all her desperate attempts to get his attention in the past, she knew it wasn't going to happen. That she's been ill for a long time, and is only now telling him. Well that's what's circulating in my head, anyway. What a vile thing I am doing, accusing something of lying about cancer.

I do hope she is lying. Because as much as her presence in our relationship is certainly a bother, I don't want her to die. Disappear, move on, accept things, yes. But not die sad

DP hasn't heard from her since she cancelled on him, and he hasn't contacted her.

LuminousLaces Sat 10-Nov-12 13:21:22

And roc, am sorry to hear that you have suffered too thanks I hope you're okay.

Flisspaps Sat 10-Nov-12 14:40:05

Have you thought that perhaps she's cancelled the meeting solely to buy herself more time to 'prepare' if she is lying?

She's told him she has terminal cancer, he's said he'll visit and now she's thinking 'SHIIIIIIT!'?

PamelaSwynfordDeBeaufort Sat 10-Nov-12 14:50:41

I think you won't hear from her for a while.

Then she will claim your do misunderstood and that she never said 'terminal' she said 'it might be terminal but i need more tests' or some such bollocks.

PamelaSwynfordDeBeaufort Sat 10-Nov-12 14:51:15

then she will claim that you dp misunderstood

diddl Sat 10-Nov-12 15:06:29

If you still get on with an ex & want to support them-fine-but not at the expense of a current relationship.

It´s not that simple in this case, is it-2yrs & she doesn´t even know he´s with someone else.

Maybe if she did, she would look for support elsewhere.

I also hope that there are few people who really only have an ex to turn to.

AnAirOfHopeForSnow Sat 10-Nov-12 15:43:23

I think you both need to grow a backbone and tell her your a couple.

If you have her adress i would send her a card offering your support to her as a couple and sign it with both your names as a couple.

That way she will know your together and that you will support her.

Its the only kindest way forward.

Would you like to be dieing and to be lied too? Your making a fool out of her and thats just not nice.

What you are doing is not normal, helpful or nice.

Tell dp to man up or move on to someone capable of having normal relationships.

Can you not get married because she will be upset or have children because she will not like that? Its not normal or right is it.

If he cant let go of the past there is no future for you both. When would be a good time to tell her?

What if they are friends with benefits? I think you need to be proactive as two years is a long time to waste on someone who cant put you first, ever.

You need to talk to her i think.

BerylStreep Sun 11-Nov-12 21:45:36

I think you both sound like really caring people, but I agree with every other person here who has said it is just not normal for your DP's ex to be such a presence in your relationship, regardless of the illness that may or may not exist.

Personally I would be saying to DP that you are concerned about the huge amount of emotional energy you both spend pussy-footing around her, and that if her illness is as bad as she says it is, then it will potentially only get worse. I would be asking him to be straight with her about the fact he is in a long-term relationship and then to stop contacting her / responding to her contact.

This can't be good for your own wellbeing.

FWIW I have a couple of exBFs that I have remained in contact with over the years, but in a Christmas card and maybe see them at a group event once a year sort of thing. If either of them were terminally ill I would be extremely upset and want to give them some support, so I can understand where your DP is coming from. However for me, it would not be at the expense of my marriage - if my DH were uncomfortable about it, I wouldn't see them. (Equally I have several exBFs that I couldn't give a flying fuck about, and if they contacted me I would tell them where to go, especially if they have stalker tendencies).

In terms of people threatening suicide, it's no longer a crime to commit suicide, but if someone is threatening it, police have a positive obligation under Article 2 of the ECHR to arrest and bring the person to a hospital in order for them to be sectioned under the mental health act. I honestly believe that if he responded to her threats of suicide by calling police, and she suffered the indignity of being arrested, then sitting at an A&E under police guard for the next 10 hours, waiting to be sectioned, she might think twice about making threats in the future.

BerylStreep Fri 16-Nov-12 12:51:38

OP, how are things?

thenightsky Fri 16-Nov-12 16:51:16

Has he been to visit her yet OP?

PlantsDieArid Fri 16-Nov-12 21:02:38

Please just read this, this thread had rung so many bells.

Ten years ago I met a lovely kind man whose thoughtfulness and gentleness overwhelmed me. Fly in ointment? STBEXW who was 'fragile' but he was handling it. I was, I believed, a robust understanding lady who supported his amazing kindness and felt a bit sorry for the poor woman.

I colluded in keeping things secret for the sake of her MH and listened with horror and sympathy when he talked about how hard he worked tp protect her. She often talked of suicide, he always talked her down. I thought he was a saint.

She had every disease going, agoraphobia, lymes disease, a botched abortion (quite!) and every time I applauded his selflessness and sensitivity.

Then after several years of standing by watching him rescue her, being praised for my fortitude and understanding, I realised that I needed him to look after ME, that perhaps I wasn't as strong as he told me i was so I rocked the boat and demanded that he put me first.

He went absolutely mad and told me I was a cunt and a moron and to cut to the chase, I had a breakdown and spent a long time in counselling learning just how unhealthy it all was - their drama, my role in it, what payoff we all got, the roles we played etc etc. Sordid, sad and a huge huge waste of life.

What did I learn? I deserved SO MUCH MORE. I found it, too and I am
healthy and happy. I truly believed he was a kind put-upon generous chap. Perhaps yours is. I hope I am wrong and apologise wholeheartedly if this has upset or insulted you. Don't waste time with anyone who doesn't put you FIRST IN HIS LIFE.

I wish you all the very best whatever the outcome.

Ps, I think it goes without saying the worst she ever had was a heavy cold...

Portofino Fri 16-Nov-12 21:13:59

Plants shock. I am so happy you saw the light. I hope your post gives some inspiration to the OP.

PlantsDieArid Fri 16-Nov-12 21:26:52

Porto, how kind, thank you. Feels very good to no longer be enmeshed in that co dependent triangle and if anyone learns from what I went through, even better.

thenightsky Fri 16-Nov-12 22:03:02

Bloody hell Plants... shock

BerylStreep Sat 24-Nov-12 02:03:28

Luminous, has your DP heard anything more?

Portofino Sat 24-Nov-12 10:30:27

Oh yes - update definitely required!

LuminousLaces Mon 26-Nov-12 20:05:34

Update as requested.

DP went to see her the week before last, and has spoken to her on the phone once since. When he went down to see her, she told him that the doctors have said she has cancer of the lymph glands, and that it is spreading to her bones, so nothing they can do. She said she wanted to stop the chemo because she didn't want to loose her hair. She hasn't told anyone except him because she doesn't get on particularly well with her family, and doesn't want to worry any of her friends / work colleagues / her daughter.

Now... A few things made me more suspect with this. She had said she'd already stopped the chemo last time. Secondly, he of course talked her into continuing the chemo, for her daughters sake if for nothing else - which I'm guessing is exactly what she would have wanted if this was a bid for his attention; him saying he wants her to be okay. Thirdly... Well. When I have watched beloved friends and family members dying, their hair wasn't high on their priority list. But then, I have never been faced with this, I don't know how I would react. As a friend in person pointed out though, if she is pretending, by saying she's stopping the chemo because she doesn't want to loose her hair, she's then not going to have to shave her head or anything to go along with it.

The fact she hasn't told anyone else also seems highly convenient. I knew she didn't have a good relationship with her family particularly, but by not telling anyone else, she is putting the onus on him.

Did ask him outright if he believed her, and he said yes, he did, after having visited her. And I guess he knows her better than I do, so I should possibly trust his judgement, but I still have a nagging doubt in the back of my mind.

LuminousLaces Mon 26-Nov-12 20:08:25

And Plants I am so sorry to hear about what you went though. Glad you are happy now. Very much appreciate your input, as I said way back when, I am grateful for all thoughts on this.

expatinscotland Mon 26-Nov-12 20:12:48

What Plants said.

LL, she's a drama queen. And he likes that or he wouldn't be in contact with her anymore.

Flisspaps Mon 26-Nov-12 20:13:10

Sounds fishy to me still sad

thenightsky Mon 26-Nov-12 20:33:17

I suppose she has to say she's stopped chemo because it wouldn't be long before he'd be wondering why she still had a full healthy head of hair.

It's all very fishy.

izzyizin Mon 26-Nov-12 20:37:36

Hands up to not having read all 14 pages but what I have read suggests that she's telling porkies and he's fallen for it hook, line, and sinker.

It's all far too pat and far too unikely, isn't it? She's stopped chemo because she doesn't want to lose her hair? I reckon Rapunzel would happily sacrifice her locks if it gave her more time with a dc and, as you've observed, how very convenient she doesn't want to tell others either because she doesn't get on with them or nobly wants to spare them.

An almost overpowering Eau d'Cod is wafting out of my netbook as I type. The issue seems to be how can you cut through the crap? Given that he's allegedly talked her into continuing chemo, perhaps she'll be forthcoming with the dates and times so that volunteers can be sourced to visit/sit with her while she's having treatment.

Has she extended an invitation to him to be with her for her 'last' Christmas and New Year yet?

NettleTea Mon 26-Nov-12 20:37:42

has she mentioned what kind of lymphoma she has - Hodgkins or Non-Hodgkins? The latter is the most likely, especially if it has spread to the bone marrow. Its prognosis is not bad at all in most cases, even with a spread to the bone marrow (as would be more likely than the actual 'bone')

Initially NHL presents as swollen glands which persist, although some people can have few symptoms. Though if its gone to the bone then she should be showing some by now - have a google and see.

But either way she is playing him - she is either making it up (in which case she has been clever and chosen a cancer which can often have not many symptoms) or she is over egging the story for dramatic effect.

Besides, if she choses her hair over her daughter I think that shows what kind of woman she is, or what she is prepared to say to get his attention.

AnyFuckingDude Mon 26-Nov-12 20:40:10

when is he planning to see her again ?

NettleTea Mon 26-Nov-12 20:47:15

haha Izzy on the last Christmas request - look out for that one OP!!!

again, she MIGHT have NHL in early stages, in which case they might take a 'wait and see' with it to see if her immune system shifts it. And she may have embellished the spread.

If she was 'terminal' with what she apparantly has, she would be looking fucking terrible -

Stage IV Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma
The definition of the most advanced stage of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is the same as that for Hodgkin's lymphoma. That is, the disease involves lymph nodes and organs throughout the body. Often, symptoms are related to the growth of the lymph nodes, notes The Merck Manual Home Edition. The enlargement of lymph nodes may put pressure on the lungs, producing difficulty breathing, or abdominal nodes may cause constipation, appetite loss and abdominal pain. Similarly, enlarged lymph nodes in the limbs or groin may cause leg swelling. Fever, weight loss and night sweats indicate the presence of advanced disease. Fatigue and weakness are common symptoms. Skin invasion may be noted as itchy patches of thickened skin, according to The Merck Manual Home Edition.

also you mentioned she went about a lump in her breast? thats really unusual. Armpit maybe. Or as a result of radiotherapy in her breast. But not a place for it usually to arise. Unless she is riddled, in which case you wouldnt have seen her out and about 6 or so weeks ago

expatinscotland Mon 26-Nov-12 20:50:36

I think her original story was that she had metastatic breast cancer, Nettle, hence, it's spread to the lymph nodes if her story is true.

NettleTea Mon 26-Nov-12 20:52:16

ah, sorry, missed that bit.

LuminousLaces Mon 26-Nov-12 21:06:14

Yes it was a lump in the breast she first went to the doctor about, apparently. Admit than my eyebrows shot up when he said she used the term lymph glands instead of nodes, but I may just be picking holes.

She hasn't said anything about a type of cancer, just told him what I've said above.

Interesting to hear that they wait and see for NHL, will store that to memory for what she says next.

No, he hasn't arranged to see her again, from what I know. Certainly no mention of xmas or new year, and do think he would tell her where to go if she made that suggestion.

PortoDude Mon 26-Nov-12 21:07:45

I have a friend going through the exact same thing - stage 3 breast cancer - spread to her lymph nodes. She had an op to remove the tumour and will have 6 months of chemo. Her hair is the last of her worries. She is not terminal but will be doing anything necessary to stay ALIVE. From what you have posted I believe the ex even less than I did before.

PortoDude Mon 26-Nov-12 21:11:11

I don't believe there is a person in the world that would not have treatment and die vs losing their hair - particularly one with a child.

LuminousLaces Mon 26-Nov-12 21:11:33

Porto will be thinking of your friend.x

PortoDude Mon 26-Nov-12 21:14:30

That is lovely of you Luminous. She is very brave strong and will fight the bugger til the last. It contrasts quite sharply with this exp though,,,,

SoggySummer Mon 26-Nov-12 21:23:14

How sick does a person have to be though to pretend they have cancer?? Thats just beyond sick.

It all sounds very suspect to me - but I cannot imagine anyone wanting to pretend they have cancer.

If she is making this up - she is one very sick woman!!

LuminousLaces Mon 26-Nov-12 21:23:51

She sounds it. I'm not the praying sort, but will be thinking of her, and sending good vibes.

The fact it sounds so opposite how the exP is acting is possibly why this is bugging me so much. I have watched friends and family battle, hard, some winning, some loosing, and even the hint that she might be faking / exaggerating is getting right on my nerves.

PortoDude Mon 26-Nov-12 22:16:42

Time to stop being nice methinks, OP. What is your DP doing - planning further trips? She is so obviously making it up - doesn't want to worry anyone about it, apart from your dp - yeah bloody right.

mammadiggingdeep Mon 26-Nov-12 22:50:12

I've just read the whole thread (phew).
Can I just add fwiw, I find the fact that she really doesn't know about you two really really hard to accept. If she is as stalkerish/obsessed as you say then she would have defo worked it out. I cannot believe that nobody at work has said enough to let her know- you said there was no office gossip but she has asked people who he's seeing and talked about their time together so there is done level of gossip.

I also agree with posters who have suggested he could be getting something out of it either a) likes the attention or worse b) stringing her along/ is on/off with her.

I think you sound like a lovely person and should put yourself first. I think you should a) find out for defo if she is ill (engineer a meeting with her and ask her how she's been "did you go to the doctors for your lump?" etc etc b) INSIST that your dp is honest with her as soon as possible- it is just too odd (and hurtful I should imagine) to have your relationships existence lied about.

Even if she is ill I think he needs to b honest with her and stop seeing her- sounds cruel but he can't be the only person in her world??

LuminousLaces Mon 26-Nov-12 22:56:51

I don't think he is getting anything out of it, but is a kind person who would bend over backwards to help anyone. Also think he was successfully emotionally blackmailed for many years by her, and whilst he has got a lot better over the time I have known him at saying "no" to her, and not being lured in, he doesn't know how to cut things entirely. And certainly won't now that he thinks she is this ill.

It bothers me slightly that he hasn't told her, but because I think he's unintentionally hurting her more by giving her false hope more than anything else.

Wouldn't be able to engineer a meeting with her, but GOD I so want to talk to her!!

There are some forms of chemo where you don't lose your hair, MIL is on one such treatment.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Mon 26-Nov-12 23:05:27

Oh dear sad

This is as drawn out as an Eastenders plot. If she 'pulls through' this, maybe you could suggest she changes jobs to become a script writer.

I am so sorry that you are too nice to put a stop to all of this bullshit.

LuminousLaces Mon 26-Nov-12 23:09:03

Isn't it just, Chipping? I must admit I am starting to loose patience. I have enough shit going on in my life. Know that must make me sound horrible and heartless, and I want to be there for DP when he is finding things tough. But this is very emotionally draining.

Of course, if I find out this is true, I will feel absolutely horrible about it! Though probably still as emotionally worn out.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Mon 26-Nov-12 23:29:09

starting to lose patience - I'd have done that about 9 months ago! With both of them.

How are you doing with sorting your stuff out?

...& no, it does not make you sound horrible & heartless. You need to focus on your life and not this melodrama that you have become involved in.

It is emotionally draining ... and it is very unfair on you. I was going to say what he needs to do, but I've said it about 20 times already, so I wont!

Even if it is true (and the chances of that are slim to nothing!!) you have nothing to feel horrible about. She is manipulating your DP & he is being bloody stupid not telling her about you and your relationship and the pair of them have cause all of this drama, not you.

Onlyjoking Tue 27-Nov-12 09:15:38

Sounds like someone is not telling the truth.
If she's as ill as she says then I'm guessing she will be signed off sick or at least having a lot of time off work for appointment Etc. if she is telling the truth then she will have little immunity and will have lost a lot of weight.
If I were your DH and had been lied to in the past, then I'd be wanting some concrete evidence.
Either she is lying or he is lying and stringing you both along. Either way it's a mess. I can see you're conflicted just in case she's telling the truth. Can your DH get to go to any medical appointments with her?

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 09:48:00

Hi OJ - haven/t seen you on here for yonks! Hope life is treating you well!

I am 100% convinced that she is lying - the fact she has told no-one but him screams that out loudly. Why him?

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 09:57:35

LL Your DP needs to man up, if this woman is actually ill, then allowing her hope that he might come back to her is just plain cruel, he needs to tell her that hes moved on, in a relationship, but if he wants and your ok with that, he will be a friend to her. Whether he wants too or not, he is hurting 2 women, and hes clueless to it, the man is coward, harsh but my ex didnt have the guts to tell me it was over, til i worked it out for myself, its cruel, thoughtless and will not benefit anyone, this woman may be sitting around waiting for this man, is that fair? Is it fair on you to have another womans feelings considered more than yours? You need to chat with this man and mean what you say.

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 13:20:01

My health stuff is up in the air, hopefully should get some answers tomorrow as have an appointment with a specialist.

The problem with encouraging him to go to her medical appointments is that I am then sending him the message that I think he should be seeing more of her. In turn, he'll also be saying to her that he wants to be there for her, and whether she is telling the truth or not, I don't think it is a good idea to get behind this.

Its a bugger, because really that is the only way to find out exactly what is going on!

No way I could arrange to meet up with her. We're not exactly friends, and more than that, she would tell him if I contacted her, and would make me look very suspicious. I did think about sending her an email saying "Y told me you were ill, know you don't want people making a fuss, but if you need someone to talk to..." kind of thing, but again that has drawbacks; if she really is ill I will then feel terrible for having offered her support with different means, and also don't think he would be happy about me contacting her. If I found out he contacted one of my exes that I'm still in touch with, for whatever reason, I'd be pissed off about it.

So I think the only thing to do is wait for it to play out. Its bloody frustrating though.

I feel really conflicted, part of me wants to tell him that I'm suspicious, but that's a huge accusation to make. I might be able to word it in a sense of "I'm worried she hasn't understood everything, its so easy to do when you're ill, but from what I know about this...". However I can just imagine how I would have felt if someone had said to me that they thought one of my friends had been lying, and that holds me back.

RichardSimmonsTankTop Tue 27-Nov-12 13:35:23

This is just bonkers. Like everyone else has said, even if she IS sick she is still telling massive lies. If it's 'terminal' has she arranged anything for her DD for after she's gone?

Also, what do you think your DP's reaction will be when if it turns out that she isn't ill?

Sorry if you've answered these questions before, I've read the whole thread and there's loads to take in.

And good luck for your appointment tomorrow.

RobotLover68 Tue 27-Nov-12 14:11:16

There are some forms of chemo where you don't lose your hair, MIL is on one such treatment

Yes this is true - I was stage 3 colon cancer and didn't lose my hair - having said that if they'd said, chemo and lose your hair, I'd still have done it anyway

RobotLover68 Tue 27-Nov-12 14:12:04

sorry, I should have added - I was on chemo but I didn't lose my hair

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 14:13:38

starting to lose patience?

I'd have left skid marks and the smell of burning rubber months ago. I have little to no tolerance to excess drama, and this is just too much of a soap opera for me.

mouldyironingboard Tue 27-Nov-12 14:50:05

Is she still working? If so, I'd be very suspicious as she'd be feeling far too ill to work with terminal cancer. She would have to have told people in her workplace as she would need to take a lot of time off sick.

A close family member died of NHL a few years ago and it was obvious she was extremely ill once she was diagnosed as terminal. Ask your DP has his ex lost a lot of weight or slowed down mentally? The cancer would be affecting her ability to eat by this stage. Also, once cancer spreads to the bones it becomes very painful and your DP's ex would be on strong painkillers such as morphine, which would affect her thought processes. She would spend a great deal of time resting and sleeping.

If his ex is telling the truth she won't survive more than a few months and may not see the New Year. I think if she's lying it's an evil thing to do.

rocamadour Tue 27-Nov-12 15:57:35

Sounds dodgy to me !! I mentioned up thread I had bc a while ago . It was stage 3 like the friend of another poster. Most of the chemo regimes given for bc WILL cause hair loss. I have a lovely dh and dcs and was determined to kick the bastard into touch which is normal. Nobody wants to be bald as an egg and I didn't much enjoy wearing a wig but by god if that's what it takes you bloody well get on with it.

Get your DP to ask WHICH DRUGS she's on. If she started chemo and gave up she'll have some sort of chemo record book recording dosages, dates, self-reported side effects etc. (I bet she won't have any of this info...)

Spero Tue 27-Nov-12 16:19:19

I am quite surprised this is still going, and I stand by what I said on page 10.

Whether or not she has cancer really isn't the issue here. The problem is your very unhealthy and potentially toxic relationship. If your partner really thinks what he is doing is ok, i.e. keeping you a secret and rushing to her side whenever she calls, and you really don't see the problem in colluding with this, your problems go way beyond a potentially fantasising ex.

Sorry to sound harsh but if you have health problems too, surely the last thing you need is juggling with this exhausting soap opera?

BerylStreep Tue 27-Nov-12 17:30:46

I agree that the op's relationship issues need to be addressed at some stage - I think it is odd that after this amount of time she is still being kept a secret from her. However I can see the op's point of view in that if the ex really is terminal, then this is not the best time to be issuing ultimatums.

If it turns out that the ex is making it up, then it will make it easier for the op to put her foot down.

OP, surely if you are all in the same small close-knit industry, you could find out if she is off work sick. It's about 6 weeks now since she told your DP she was terminal? Surely she would have been off sick since then, and will need sick lines. What about discussing it with the colleague who also found her out in lying? Perhaps if the colleague was to mention to a few other colleagues, 'oh, did you hear about XXX, such dreadful news about her cancer' then once word is out, it will become apparent if she does or doesn't have cancer. Or you could 'confide' with the industry gossip how worried you are about her. <sneaky & manipulative blush>

Spero Tue 27-Nov-12 17:50:20

I appreciate it's not a great time for ultimatums (ultimata?) but when is it ever going to be a good time? She could drag this out for years presumably.

Good point about the working. I was told quite definitely I would NOT be able to work if I had chemo.

But again, not really the main issue here I think.

Fallingoffthefence Tue 27-Nov-12 18:26:58

I worked with a woman once who had 'form' for saying she had cancer. Things got tricky for her at work (because of other lies that she told - too many to mention) and she suddenly had to have time off for tests and then told us she had been diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Around the time I met up with an old friend who knew her who said 'oh x isn't she dead yet?' I thought it was a horrible thing to say until he told me that she had done the same thing in another job - got caught out in a lie, was about to be sacked, said she had terminal cancer and was given a pay off to go because people felt sorry for her.

A short time later someone who worked in the same building said someone who had come for a meeting from x's home town mentioned having bumped into her and said how surprised they were to see her because she had been diagnosed with terminal cancer years earlier.

Not saying that this is the case - but it does happen, and people who lie on this scale can be very believable because they have no guilt (as far as I can see) so if they get caught out just start lying about what they told you.

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 18:34:06

Fallingoffthefence, people like that are normally called socio paths and pathological liars, they start believing their own lies.

waitingforthesun Tue 27-Nov-12 18:41:18

This thread has made me angry. What a bunch of liars and drama seekers.

You are lying to dp over his ex's lies and your suspicions over her illness AND you have lied to the ex about your relationship with dp.

Your DP has lied to his ex for 2 years.

The ex has lied majorly in the past and is possibly lying about having cancer. Plus you are all semi stalking each other.

My advice, everyone needs to come clean and tell the truth. Mental health problems are no excuse for such disgusting and unfair behaviour. I don't know why you're posting here, but the answer is obvious, quit the lies and the drama and the crazy head fucks.

AnyFuckingDude Tue 27-Nov-12 19:22:30

it's been said many times on this thread, waiting

For some reason, OP thinks this spineless liar of a bloke is a prize worth hanging on to. And is prepared to remain in a long standing bitchfight she can never win to secure that particular inferior specimen. Hard to understand, but there you go.

Bluesue26 Tue 27-Nov-12 19:27:37

Couldn't agree more

Bluesue26 Tue 27-Nov-12 19:28:35

- sorry that was couldn't agree more with Waiting.

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 19:33:46

I don't know if she's still working - I'll ask him.

Why did I post here? Because I wanted to know whether it sounded suspicious to people who didn't have the emotional involvement I did.

Whilst I am frustrated with the fact she doesn't know, as I said upthread that's more because I think its unfair on her. From the way she has acted in the past though, and now with this, I do totally understand why he is anxious about telling her. Some of you think this is foolish, I know, but I do get it.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 19:34:55

Just imagine what you could have done with the energy you have expended on all this drama. A lot.

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 19:41:45

LuminousLaces He needs to stop giving her false hope and just be honest, she needs to know so she can move on, yeah she might be a liar, or just desperate, either way even liars need to hear some truths, letting her down gently should have been dealt with a year ago.

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 19:44:37

Expat I know. I do know that. But there isn't really much I can do. I can't tell him I don't want to hear about it, because if its upsetting him, I do. I can't approach her about it, because we're not friends. Its rather a mess. But then life is never straight cut.

No he's not perfect, and has his flaws. I do disagree that he is getting anything out of this though. I think he spent several years in a relationship he was unhappy with, because he was frightened of her reaction. Again, this isn't just a sob story I have heard from him, a lot of people speak very openly about how much happier he is separated from her etc. He made a huge step when he finally ended things with her two years ago, and has gradually withdrawn further and further from being emotionally invested.

If this was just a friend of his, and there was no relationship history, then, as a friend pointed out to me, I would be glad he was an empathetic person, and was supporting her at a difficult time. So I can't have it both ways. I can't be glad that he is kind, and is there for me when I need him, whilst not wanting him to be there for other people too.

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 19:47:41

MrsF, I entirely agree with you. But by the possibility that she is telling the truth, now is not the right time. Do think he has kind of dug himself - and thus, us - in to a bit of a hole with it, and now doesn't quite know how to get out of it without really causing a meltdown, in all honesty.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 19:47:52

'Expat I know. I do know that. But there isn't really much I can do.'

Yes, there is, get some help with your self-esteem, because you deserve more than a ridiculous excuse for a relationship with a person like this. He's a mind fuck, LL, and relationships with mind fucks only go one way.

Narked Tue 27-Nov-12 19:56:30

You could dump him and just watch Eastenders instead. Then at least the melodrama would be contained in 30 minute chunks.

slambang Tue 27-Nov-12 19:56:55

Perhaps he's suspicious too.
Perhaps he doesn't dare mention his suspicions to you in case you push him into confronting her.
Perhaps if you honestly and openly talk to him about how you feel. about him (and her), he'll open up to you and together you'll be a better team to tackle whatever happens to her next whether she's telling the truth or not.

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 20:00:47

Narked grin Tonight, my friend, I entirely agree with you. But I'd rather stick pins in my eyes than watch that shit!!

Slambang, I asked him outright if he believed her. He said yes, but did hesitate, so I wonder. I might point of some of the things on here, and leave him to think about it. Thank you.

AnyFuckingDude Tue 27-Nov-12 20:09:42

show him that bit about being a spineless liar, and a dodgy booby prize nobody should be expending energy fighting for

no ?

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 20:15:57

He must be the Shag of the Century because really, there's no other reason I can see for putting up with this, and even if he were, I'd consider him a fuckbuddy rather than a relationship.

MsPavlichenko Tue 27-Nov-12 20:17:24

Usually a lurker, but having seen other men "detatch" like this from XPs I wanted to comment. Leaving aside the entire cancer issue, his slowly, slowly approach to leaving her has clearly not worked. She is still invested in him, and he is getting something out of all the drama , via both you and her. If he really cared about her, not to mention you, he'd have been honest with her long ago, thus actually helping her to accept the situation, and move on with her life.

Sorry if this sounds brutal, but I really feel you are being played here, I have seen it before, and often from really "caring" men.

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 20:25:48

Um yes - agree with Expat and AF. He does'.t have to do this. They don.t have a relationship any more. End of. He does not need to attend appointments with her. She does not need to prove she has cancer or not. What he needs to do is say "I am with Luminous now, let me know if you need a hand with anything" That IS the extent of his responsibility - and if he says otherwise then he is just not worth bothering with.

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 20:37:24

LuminousLaces, Hes dug him self a huge hole with 2 woman holding the ladder, she maybe telling the truth, and maybe he could offer support but as a friend only, its a miracle that she hasnt found out from someone else, and that would hurt more wouldnt it?

ProphetOfDoom Tue 27-Nov-12 20:45:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ProphetOfDoom Tue 27-Nov-12 20:48:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 20:54:59

The more people reply the more and more it sounds like shes lying, she'd rather die leaving her DD than lose her hair, hell i'd lose my boobs, hair, eyelashes, eyebrows, whatever to be able to mother my DD, what a stupid reason to give and a highly suspect one, any one who picks hair over children, should have them full stop, this woman is probably a liar.

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 20:57:27

Also DP is the only one that knows, if i had cancer first person i'd tell is my mum, then my 2 closest friends, be very suspicious of this woman, she might be truthful but i doubting it.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 20:57:43

Don't bother. There's no one who'd rather die than lose her hair, especially as a single mum with an older teen DD.

I'd bin him, tbh. Too much drama and lies and BS, it can be doing your mental health any favours and you know, no one is that good of a shag.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 20:59:46

I cried rivers when DD1 lost her hair, so did she. But it was that or certain death within weeks. I mean, duh.

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 21:01:42

expatinscotland Hair grows back, life does not, its an easy no thoughts needed decision.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 21:20:56

Well, exactly, MrsF, and although she did die, we got 6 months after her hair fell out, well, more like about 4 because the last 2 months of her life were very very bad for her mostly.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 21:21:31

Needless to say, I think people who lie about having cancer are FUBAR.

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 21:30:23

Exactly Expat. If you have cancer - if you have terminal cancer, you know where your priorities are. Op seems to be so passive in all this I am starting to worry that she is making it up. Or alternatively, her dp is such a fuckwit he cannot see what is staring him in the face/or not staring him in the face.

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 21:31:58

My mother survived 2 years with the cancer that killed her - it is pretty evident in all photos that she was seriously ill.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 21:35:33

My daughter got 7 months and 29 days from her diagnosis, the last fortnight of which was in ICU and the last 8 weeks of which were dire.

I think this gal's lying, but it's neither here nor there. This guy's a fuckwit no matter how nice he seems - I've met a lot of fuckwits who seemed very nice, that's how they suck people in and waste their time.

MrsFlibble Tue 27-Nov-12 21:44:42

expatinscotland PortoDude, Im sorry for your loss, and sad way to end a precious life, and it annoys me when people make horrific situations fit their lies, its like lying about being raped, although not as extreme,

This guy seems so much like my ex in how gutless he is, and its cruel to both woman, to keep them hanging on like that, OP should work out, why its acceptable for her to have her feelings put second, i let my ex do that, and i will never do that again.

MrsDeVere Tue 27-Nov-12 21:46:48

I have read most of this thread.
I think she is lying.
She wouldn't be the first and she wont be the last.

Cancer seems to be the illness of choice for attention seeking stalkerish types.
It is a disease that engenders such horror in people that they do not dare to question it.

After all, who wants to be the terrible person who calls 'liar' on a poor cancer victim?

My friend has terminal bc. My DD died of cancer. My sister had bc and thank God survived. Your DP's ex's story doesn't ring true with any of my experiences of this shitey disease.

But I know that cancer can hit hard and fast. It is possible to be dx terminal so shortly after an initial dx.

It just doesn't sound right. Where is her care plan? Where are the drugs for keeping her bones strong and the tests for her potassium levels and Hb count? What are her plans for her DD's future?

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 21:46:55

Expat - I followed A's journey right to the end. I am fucked off with this thread because OP over the space of weeks has done nothing. OP - handwringing is of no use to anyone, especially you.

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 21:49:30

Thank you and love to all of you who have shared your stories on here, especially you expat, as I followed your story, and still think of your DD regularly. x

Porto, certainly not making it up, and upset at the suggestion you would think that. I'm trying to stay calm as I want to get a level response to the situation, and overly emotional posts (whether they be sad, angry or even happy) never get rational responses. The whole situation, every aspect of it (and I include in that the possible issues in my relationship that have been raised here, all of which I am giving fair thought to), is very emotive, and I am not sure what to think or feel about it. Which is more of a reason to stay as neutral as I am trying to when posting.

Slight ramble there, sorry, hope it makes some sense.

SolidGoldYESBROKEMYSPACEBAR Tue 27-Nov-12 21:49:48

I still rather think that the bloke was psychologically abused by this woman for years and is struggling to detach. He's obviously a bit wet - maybe he had a bully in the family when he was a kid and has grown up an appeaser.

However, OP, I also still think that you would be best off walking away from the whole mess. You don't really owe either of these people anything. But I do appreciate that you feel squeamish about saying 'She's full of shit, tell her to fuck off,' just because everyone is so culturally conditioned to react with sympathy and concern and forgiveness whenever someone says 'But I've got cancer' - which is of course why claiming to have cancer is so popular with scammers.

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 21:56:30

SolidGold, without going in to too much detail, yes, your first paragraph (and especially the last sentence, sadly) is exactly how it is.

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 21:57:03

I think you have to man up here. If she has cancer or not, it is nothing to do with you. You can feel sympathetic - but that is it, The same should go for your dp. It is not his role to support her. If he feells that it is, then you should accept that he is not for you, or at least she needs to accept that you are a couple and you will BOTH support her.

expatinscotland Tue 27-Nov-12 22:09:41

But seriously, LL, this isn't good for YOU and your health, and be consequence, your own child's well-being.

He has issues, your BF, okay. But he's visiting them on you. And you know, you don't need this.

I disbelieve the whole story, and I hope I'm right and she doesn't have terminal cancer because it's awful.

But it's neither here nor there. What is is that you're spending energy on this and emotion on this that's yours and valuable. You feel unable to express yourself fully to your BF because of this woman and his actions are responsible for that.

That's wrong, LL. That's wrong of him to visit that on you.

The only person who has to buck up is you, but you have to believe that you're better than this melodramatic bullshit, that you are worth a person having an open relationship with, worth a person who doesn't have ties to a finished relationship.

I hope you find that in you somewhere because believe me, this is going nowhere and doesn't really merit the effort you're putting into it.

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 22:14:37

Quite! Expat puts it superbly.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Tue 27-Nov-12 22:28:04

Porto - I really don't think that's a fair comment to make I am fucked off with this thread because OP over the space of weeks has done nothing. OP - handwringing is of no use to anyone, especially you. This is her thread, her life and she has to live it the way she sees fit. She's taken on board everyone's comment, she's been gracious under fire. She might not be doing what many would (or think they would) do in the same situation - but it's LL's choice. If you are frustrated or whatever, then you have the option of not posting on her thread - it is really not on to say you are pissed off because she hasn't done 'as she's been told'.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Tue 27-Nov-12 22:28:32

LL - how did your appointment go today?

PortoDude Tue 27-Nov-12 22:35:48

Chipping - you are quite right that OP has to something or nothing, all of which is nowt to do with me - except OP was asking for practical advice.....

ChippingInLovesAutumn Tue 27-Nov-12 23:22:23

Porto - I know she asked for advice and she has taken that advice on board, she may not have acted the way you, I or lots of other people would have, but it's her life, her decision. As frustrating as it might be I still don't think it's fair to say that you are 'fucked off with her the thread'.

I really don't want to argue about it, at all, of course you can post whatever you want, I was just making the point that I don't think that's very fair or very nice.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Tue 27-Nov-12 23:25:00

But imo nothing wrong at all with your practical advice and I wish she would take it smile

LuminousLaces Tue 27-Nov-12 23:50:46

I know some of you are getting frustrated with me, but I am taking on board everything that is being said, even if I am not acting on it. I do appreciate the input.

expatinscotland Wed 28-Nov-12 00:01:13

Really, LL, you deserve so much more than this. Because even if he's been abused, bullied, whatever, it's not your problem, he's making it so, however. That's not right. That's not what someone who loves you does, that's not what someone who loves himself does.

Spero Wed 28-Nov-12 09:47:13

I think a large part of the frustration stems from the fact that you seem to be constantly making excuses for him, or even worse saying that you should be grateful that he has this positive trait of being such a kind sensitive guy!

The other perspective on this is that he is neither kind nor sensitive, in fact quite the reverse, and is hurting two women because of it.

It's really sad if he acts this was because what happened to him as a child has exacerbated or even introduced character Traits that make him act this way. But he has been an adult for a long time and has to take some responsibility for his decisions, or refusal to make decisions.

There has been near universal agreement on this thread that what is happening in your relationship is not healthy. It took me a year to listen and take on board what my friends were saying in a similar situation - I hope you don't need as long.

Any update on this OP?

LuminousLaces Tue 11-Dec-12 22:55:47

No update, really. Whenever I ask how she is, he says that when he hears from her, she doesn't say more than "still the same". Apparently she's really upset at the moment because the cat is ill - and once again my cynicism has kicked in, as they had the cat when they were together, and I wonder if she's now trying to play the "the only thing that remains of our relationship is poorly" seeing as he hasn't run to her side with her health.

But then maybe I am a suspicious bitch blush

izzyizin Wed 12-Dec-12 00:46:40

This seems to be shaping up towards an invite for him to spend ' the last Christmas' with her and the feline before they join the choir immortal having achieved ripe old age.

If I were you I'd start spreading the word 'in strictest confidence' to all who know her/him and, should occasion arise, blame my indiscretion on too much Christmas wine coupled with sorrow that she's chosen to go it alone and deny her friends opoortunity to show how much they care for her.

I hope the cat makes a speedy recovery.

LuminousLaces Wed 12-Dec-12 11:48:04

Doesn't it just? Thankfully he is spending it with his family, as we're off to see DS's dad's family (take it in turns with grandparents each year), so I know that won't be happening.

Ooh that is a fabulous idea, how very cunning. Only problem is, if it got back to her, she would challenge him on it, and I would then get challenged in return, as he has respected her request for privacy. But I may well consider doing that...

LuminousLaces Wed 12-Dec-12 11:50:51

That sounds like I think he would want to! He doesn't, and wouldn't go if invited. But his family live a good few hours drive away, so she wouldn't be able to persuader him to pop in or anything, which she will no doubt try.

forgetmenots Wed 12-Dec-12 13:17:06

I've just read all of this - goodness me.

OP, I'm not going to judge your DP as it sounds like there's more to his behaviour than you can go into here. But to not challenge it for fear of looking like a bitch is too passive for words, and not good for him, his ex or yourself.

I honestly would have to sit him down and gently tell him that you think he is unwittingly encouraging her, that the dependency he has on him is hurting you and your relationship. You don't have to even bring up her health. FWIW I don't believe she is terminally ill, I agree with Izzy, there are going to be a lot of last requests to come. I think your DP sounds like a nice man who doesn't know how to say no to people who ask things of him. Make sure he doesn't say no to you. Talk to him, tell him how you are feeling without blaming or accusing the ex. He deserves to know and you deserve this to stop.

AndrewMyrrh Wed 12-Dec-12 15:54:34

Ahem, I already suggested confiding in colleagues. <needy>

LuminousLaces Wed 12-Dec-12 16:31:41

Andrew grin

I can't confide in colleagues as much, but I can gently mention how concerned DP is about her to the people that warned me about her when we first got together. It was probably your word colleagues that I reacted to rather than your suggestion, I'm sorry for that <strokes Andrew's ego gently>

I'm seeing DP tonight, will have a chat with him about things. I've been standing my ground more with everyone recently.

Thing is, I can't really raise my suspicions without raising the lies she has told about him in the past. They were big things, and will upset him hugely to find out. But if I don't tell him about those, then the suspicion that she is lying just sounds nuts. I may try and mention some more of the medical information you have all shared with me. I did ask him a while ago what 'type' of cancer it was, and he just repeated what she had said. When I asked him if NHL sounded familiar, he looked at me blankly, so she either hasn't told him, or hasn't done enough research to pull this off.

Still feeling like a terrible person for not believing her, but does reassure me that none of you lot do either.

AndrewMyrrh Wed 12-Dec-12 16:55:00

Is she definitely off work sick?

AndrewMyrrh Wed 12-Dec-12 16:57:02

<& thanks for ego stroke> Am Beryl in Xmas disguise, which I thought was very witty, but no-one has any idea who I am, and think I'm a bloke.

izzyizin Wed 12-Dec-12 17:05:18

That false beard fools them every time, Ms Streep Mr Marr AM grin

OhComeAllYeZombies Wed 12-Dec-12 17:10:27

Luminous, I can't help but notice that it's gone from being breast cancer to being a lymphoma. Lymphomas can develop in the breast, but it is extremely rare.

breast-cancer.ca/miscellaneous-breast-lesions/lymphoma-of-the-breast.htm

The longer this goes on, the more bizarre it seems to get.

forgetmenots Wed 12-Dec-12 17:30:26

You don't have to mention suspicions, though, Luminous. Just the dependency issues and the secrecy would be enough for me. Start by talking about those (very real) issues, with no reference to her 'illness'. This isn't actually about that, or whether she is telling the truth, after all.

digerd Wed 12-Dec-12 18:00:44

She may be angling for him to marry her in her last weeks, and then have a miraculous recovery - that his love healed her even.
After 1st cycle of my DH's chemo - 7 days- he lost his hair during the next 3 weeks. And it is usually 3 months of trial before they decide it is not working. My BF'd sister went through 5 months of chemo, then they found it wasn't working and changed the chemo -. Doesn't add up to me as true.

kilmuir Wed 12-Dec-12 18:04:32

hmmmmmmmmmmm

MordecaiMargaret Thu 13-Dec-12 07:14:02

This sounds a tough situation. Her lying about him, you and others knowing about it, you withholding that from him, you and he together, everyone knowing about it and withholding it from her and now all three of you knowing about her 'cancer' but witholding that from everybody. What a lot of work to keep things straight, it must stress you out a lot.
If she knows you and dp are good friends could you approach her and say something like 'I know dp has been really worried about you lately and he's finding it hard, he hasn't said anything about what it is, but I'd love to help both of you if I could' or something along those lines?
If she's really that sick, she actually will need the help of more than just her ex and being jealous of you and dp will be far down the list of things to worry about when she's in pain or (hopefully not) dying. If she's making it all up, then she can't really be angry at him for breaking the confidence.

AndrewMyrrh Thu 13-Dec-12 09:52:20

Margaret, I think that suggestion in practice would just be a bit creepy - and cements the idea in the ex's head that in fact she and he really are still perceived as being a couple to the outside world.

MordecaiMargaret Thu 13-Dec-12 10:54:21

Fair enough Andrew, I see your point in it could seem that way. I didn't put it very well but what I meant was that OP just confront the situation one way or another, the ex is holding them to ransom by making the guy keep it a secret therefore not getting caught in the lie. Even if she's telling the truth and she is sick, the offer of help is a nice one from the guy's new gf and a way of introducing her as such, if she's lying the offer of help would bring the lie out in the open.
Even if it's true 'I'm dying of cancer, you're the only one who knows and you can't tell anyone' is an unfair burden to put on the guy.

NettleTea Thu 13-Dec-12 11:12:02

you know, I still do understand why you havent mentioned the other big lies to him now, especially as you are suspicious about the cancer. Its totally relevent, and you can justify not telling him before because it wasnt causing an impact upon YOUR relationship. But truly, its cruel to him to allow him to keep going along with this. If he is the sort of guy who doesnt want to hurt her (and I CAN believe that as have encountered a similar situation, though not in my relationship - in that case it did come to a head when it was revealed she was lying about something else, and he chose the new girlfriend because of the lies) then he is probably agonising about someone he cares for, although doesnt want to be with, being terminally ill.
I can also sort of understand why he has kept the info about the 2 of you from her - if she was as abusive as you say he is probably trying to protect the 2 of you, but it isnt working out like that. It has repercussions on how you feel about the relationship which possibly havent occurredto him. Is it possible that he has AS? I know you may dismiss this because he is caring and aparantly empathic, but he could be someone who is very in touch with his own feelings and he puts those feelings onto others. So, in his mind, he knows that he is with you and is in no doubt about that, so its beyond his comprehension that you dont feel the same. It just might not occur to him that his behaviour (which seems logical and is totally well intentioned to him) could possibly be hurtful to you, and would be horrified to think it. AS people are also easily abused or lied to - they can appear very guillable but its because it wouldnt occur to them that someone might be lying.

NettleTea Thu 13-Dec-12 11:12:43

Aggh, I still DONT understand why you havent mentioned the big lies to him.....

LuminousLaces Thu 13-Dec-12 13:48:31

I haven't told him about the big lies because of the nature of them. They would upset him, massively. And in the slim possibility that she is actually ill (even if she is exaggerating etc) I don't think its fair for me to damage his memory of her, if the worst should happen. She spent at least the last few years of their relationship on a destruction mission, damaging the opinions others held of him. Because of that, I also don't want to ruin his mental security. Because if I told him what she had been saying, the fact she had said it at all would destroy him, swiftly followed by the fact that other people would have been thinking these horrible things for the last few years.

Zombies, that link is really useful, thank you. I might mention the statistics. Its sounds even less plausible having read that.

I don't know if she is off work, I haven't actually asked him.

Degerd, I'm sorry to hear about your DH, I do hope he's okay now. Yes it wouldn't surprise me if that's what she's aiming for, she's certainly desperate enough to try that.

I feel hideously sorry for the woman, actually, whether this is true or not. She is obviously highly insecure and that is another reason I am hesitant to tell him about her lies.

If we lived closer to each other, I would possibly speak to her, but we are a good hour apart, and I don't drive. Did consider sending her a Christmas card, but she would tell DP, who would then ask me why on earth I had done that... No, it just gets way too complicated.

forgetmenots Thu 13-Dec-12 14:08:39

last time: it isn't about her, it's about your DP continuing with this, regardless of motive, and your inability to raise this for fear of everything except the only thing you should be fearful of: him (with your implicit support) putting her needs first, regardless of whether he sees that or not.

Unless you're willing to act, you're waiting on a development from her. She is in control. I'm sorry LL but I really don't think any of the good advice is going to help you at the moment, you're stuck because you and DP have chosen to be. Take the focus off her story. There are still problems. Deal with those.

stifnstav Sat 22-Dec-12 11:26:06

How are things OP?

DeafLeopard Tue 15-Jan-13 22:46:09

Was thinking about this thread yesterday and wondering how things are going Luminous

LuminousLaces Wed 30-Jan-13 23:46:36

Hi Leopard, no update, really. He's decided she is not coming to the work event that we will all be at at the end of March, no matter how well she says she is feeling, though I confess I am still partially waiting for a miraculous recovery just in time.

Whenever I ask how the ex is, he hasn't spoken to her since the last time I asked, or she is avoiding the question. From the way he's talking about it, I think he is now skeptical if he wasn't before.

A few issues have come up between us that we're trying to work on - mainly centered around (and emotionally fueled by) some problems for him work wise. Hopefully she is okay, and she will get bored when she realises he isn't willing to run to her side every time she calls.

Lueji Thu 31-Jan-13 05:30:23

I'm sure he must be getting skeptical.
My first reaction now at seeing the thread title was, hasn't she died yet? (not that I expected her to, I didn't believe her)

LuminousLaces Mon 11-Feb-13 00:36:07

Update;

Was brave tonight and told him about some of the lies as they came up again in a conversation with someone else this afternoon... He knew about them. He'd known about them for a while, said they had spoken about them a long while back (before I met him), when she had admitted to them, and apologised.

He seemed to be relieved that I knew, actually, because he then told me she has - as I suspected she would - tried to do the whole "I'm dying, you need to be with me", and that on top of other emotionally controlling bullshit that has happened for years has made him suspicious, but he hadn't wanted to say anything, as, like I said way back at the beginning of this thread, who the hell wants to accuse someone of lying about cancer?!

I feel better to have had this conversation with him and kind of wish I had asked him way back when blush But as it is I have now.

caramelwaffle Mon 11-Feb-13 00:41:58

You sound relieved: communication is the key.
Good luck with everything.

LuminousLaces Mon 11-Feb-13 01:06:23

Definitely relieved. I'm so pleased to hear that although he is upset for her that she feels the need to tell these lies, he's not longer so emotionally invested.

Also no longer feel that I'm keeping something from him, which is a wonderful weight off my shoulders, selfishly.

He's distanced himself from her massively, which again, is better for him as an individual, and us as a couple, and we can work on our relationship without her overhanging it now.

Yes... Very very relieved.

dundeo Mon 11-Feb-13 01:10:26

Does she know about your relationship yet?

BerylStreep Fri 22-Feb-13 20:14:44

LuminousLaces, how are things going?

I saw this story about a woman fraudulently claiming she had cancer and thought of you. It would appear to be a fairly common scam judging from posts on here.

Anyway, hope all is well.

BerylStreep Fri 22-Feb-13 20:18:29

Oh, I have ust noticed you updated recently - don't know how I missed this on my 'threads I'm on list'. Glad to hear it's all out in the open between you both.

How are you feeling - didn't you have a health issue of your own to contend with?

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