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How often do men/women leave a relationship when there is no one else involved?

(29 Posts)
Upnotdown Sun 20-Oct-13 15:30:42

I'm just curious. My DMs relationship of 20 years is breaking down. He is an abusive arse. She has her moments (by her own admission). He is demonising her, he's cold, remote and something has 'shifted' that she can't put her finger on. Spends as much time as possible out of the house, sleeps on the sofa etc... I think there's someone else involved, she's not so sure.

But without going over their situation, of the proportion of LTR/marriages you know that have split, how many have involved an OM/OW (physically/emotionally/just a new friendship)?

My mum has always said to me 'Men don't leave'...I know that's a bit of a sexist remark, but is it true?

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 20-Oct-13 15:39:14

In my own family there have been a lot of relationship breakdowns and, in every case, the 'leaver' (female as well as male) has fairly quickly announced they are with someone new. That even included a DV relationship where the OM seemed to provide the catalyst for my aunt finally deciding she'd had enough.

nomorecrumbs Sun 20-Oct-13 15:46:33

Well, to give a personal example, 3 out of the 4 I've had haven't been due to there being someone else, just sheer boredom.

Not that the blokes involved believed that.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 20-Oct-13 15:56:07

BTW I'd lay odds on the bloke in the OP having an affair. He's all but got a t-shirt with it printed on the front, hasn't he? hmm

Every single time here.

Putitonthelist Sun 20-Oct-13 16:01:12

Every friend and acquaintance I've known whose H has left has discovered another woman. This school year alone I've heard of 3 husbands who left their wives for another mum from their sons rugby team/someone they met on the internet/a work colleague.

I have friends who have left their husband and no-one else was involved - they were married to abusive/controling men.

In my experience men do not leave their wives to be on their own.

Upnotdown Sun 20-Oct-13 16:03:58

I don't know of any, myself.

That's exactly my thinking, Cog - it's all so obvious.

WhoNickedMyName Sun 20-Oct-13 16:05:15

I don't personally know any men who have left their marriage without having someone else on the scene.

I do know a couple of women that have left without having anyone else, and both stayed single for more than a year after they left.

Leavenheath Sun 20-Oct-13 16:50:07

I've never known a man leave and there hasn't been an OW, but I've known a few women who have and there's been no-one else.

Yonks ago though, someone posted a link on here to some research which explained the gender differences.

It wasn't rocket science as far as I can remember. It just pointed out that men have been conditioned to expect regular sex and nurturing and they are unlikely to give that up in a hurry unless someone else is available to provide it. Whereas women often find their workload decreases when single, get more time for self-nurturing and find it comparitively easier to access sex if they want it.

I also found myself nodding vigorously on a similar thread when a poster pointed out that unless you're the person or people involved, how on earth can anyone else say there was 'definitely no-one else involved' in other people's marriage break-ups. If leavers are lying to their old partners, they are hardly likely to broadcast it to anyone else, are they?

Leavenheath Sun 20-Oct-13 16:56:12

So I guess I should revise that pp and say: 'I've known a few women who have and there's apparently been no-one else' grin

However with the women I'm thinking of, there wasn't even a suspicion of someone else and the relationships ended after loads of efforts and counselling to make things work. A lot of the men I've known leave did so suddenly and without any real warning that there even problems, until just before they walked.

wukn80 Sun 20-Oct-13 17:09:46

Of the three significant relationship breakdowns in the last few years from my immediate circle of friends and family, 2 have been Hs leaving, 1 family member left her H. Family member is still single and seems 1000 times happier for it, but there was DV issues in the background, not cheating to factor in. Both friends Hs leaving left to be with OWs.

I'd always assumed the male/female behaviour split to be fairly common, for the same reasons Leaven mentioned, although obviously it doesn't apply to 100% of cases.

But just like in cases where one partner dies, the average time for a man to find another woman is much, much less - and having children (esp ones who need more dedicated levels of care-giving) reduces the time until new relationship occurs due to the avg level of support a married man seems to need to raise children vs. what level of support a married woman seems to need.

garlicvampire Sun 20-Oct-13 17:12:50

I subscribe to the popular view that men have an alternative lined up more often than women do. I've no evidence of that, however - my own history, and that of friends, has been a mixed bag. It could be simply that more women than men are good liars!

I'd say your mum's STBX is definitely seeing someone, though, Up.

garlicvampire Sun 20-Oct-13 17:16:51

in cases where one partner dies, the average time for a man to find another woman is much, much less

Yeah, the widower in my family was besieged by lovely women bringing food, company, practical assistance and sex. When I've become unexpectedly single, there's been no stream of men carrying cooked meals or DIY toolbags to my door! Plenty 'offering' sex, but not even under the pretence of helping me feel better hmm

Lavenderhoney Sun 20-Oct-13 17:19:29

Wrt people I know, this year, its been either

1- the dh has had ow ( gt back together)
2- the dw has had om. ( got back together)
3. The dw has decided now the dc have left to leave. This co incided with the dw going out more, having fun and not wanting to stay in every night and watch tv. She did discuss with her dh and he said he wasn't going to change. So she left.
4. The dw found an om. Still lives in the marital home with 5 ds. The dh devastated but hopes she sees sense. Unlikely, she is now back with her first bf, apparently who she has always loved. Lovely.
5. As yet unknown, very shaky, waiting to hear.

Op, sounds like your df has someone else, but she isn't free. Sounds awful for your dm though. Have you told her about mn?

motherinferior Sun 20-Oct-13 17:27:00

I've been left for nobody, twice. Which, as the second bloke pointed out, demonstrated just how horrible it was to be in a relationship with me.

garlicvampire Sun 20-Oct-13 17:44:12

That was nice of him, MI shock

motherinferior Sun 20-Oct-13 17:46:21

Oh, yes, it was part of a list of things explaining why it wasn't him, it was me. I sort of had a bit of major depression after that. Nothing like knowing you're so repulsive that men would rather be single than be without you to boost the old self-esteem.

KissesBreakingWave Sun 20-Oct-13 17:46:44

I've left to be single every time but one, and that was an EA that stayed E for quite a while after - she was the one that pointed out, in words of one syllable, that the marriage I was in was grotesquely abusive and I was visibly going nuts. I was, ah, pathetically grateful. The eventual relationship didn't last long before I got dumped for my own good. We're friends now, some ten years later, but I was a right arse about it at the time.

Next one went after three months when I realised that amazing looks didn't make up for having the personality of a rabid chimp. The one after that, we grew apart and realised we were mostly just hanging out as friends. We still are. Most recent one had a habit of trying on abusive shit that my ex-wife had driven me nuts with. I'd tell her to knock it off, she'd manage for a few months and then back to it. Final go-round, I told her to stop it or it was over, so she dumped me.

I appear to have reached the age where I fall into the 'widower' category. First entirely blatant offer of a sympathy shag after less than three days. Got five in all - all friends of the ex, which raised my eyebrows somewhat.

motherinferior Sun 20-Oct-13 17:46:46

...than be WITH you...

Ginocchio Sun 20-Oct-13 17:53:15

I left, with nobody else involved or lined up. It does happen, and I know a couple of other men who have done similar. This board's obviously going to be a bit baised (and some of you do appear to have unfortunately married some real wankers in the past), but we're not all bad...

Leavenheath Sun 20-Oct-13 17:55:32

YY I've seen that too garlic re. widowers and in fact, said so on a thread only yesterday.

I did see it happen to one widow though, but she was very, very rich...wink

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Sun 20-Oct-13 17:58:54

It is very rare for a bloke to leave (Gino can be the odd rare one!) without someone else in the wings - less common for a woman (as explained above).

This situation though... if he doesn't have someone else lined up I'll gnaw on my trainers!

I'm sorry your DM is going through this - but she's sure to be happier when it's sorted out than she has been with him.

566506 Sun 20-Oct-13 18:15:43

None of mine. Only three LTRs split due to age difference, sex drive difference (his v. low) and alcoholism.

None behaved like your mum's partner who sounds like he has someone else (and like she would be better off without him).

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Sun 20-Oct-13 18:18:35

I think you have to look at 'break ups' differently though 56606. I don't see someone walking out on a relationship (seemingly out of the blue/one sided action) as the same thing as a relationship that has broken down and both parties accepting that.

OneDayWhenIGrowUp Sun 20-Oct-13 18:28:04

My long-term XP left me 4 years ago to be single, he was depressed, but at the time there was nothing I could do or say for him to allow me to support him and work on things. Last time I saw him he essentially said that he regrets the decision, but I've since moved on with my life, had several relationships since him and have no interest in going back there. He has had 1 serious relationship since and was cheated on, and is now single again.

Upnotdown Sun 20-Oct-13 19:29:56

Good to see some exceptions smile

The big problem with my DMs relationship is that it's always been off kilter - they aren't very well suited but have known each other since they were little. They've always got on with it and soldiered through (he is very abusive, not physically until last month when he pushed his fist into her face) but all of a sudden, it's like he's just decided not to carry on and has offered the strangest excuses for wanting to end it. Previously, he's offered no excuses/reasons for any of his behaviour and has always chosen to stonewall.

This week he told her he'll be out by the end of November and wants half of all bills/mortgage paying in the meantime...

Lweji Sun 20-Oct-13 19:42:29

I left because of dv. No other person involved.

Then I was in a 11 month relationship and I broke it off. Nobody else either.

Lweji Sun 20-Oct-13 19:44:59

From what you say, she should be the one kicking him out.

Upnotdown Sun 20-Oct-13 19:53:55

Exactly, Lweji. She's always been too scared of finances (she's not living the life or anything - just scared of what the future holds for a singleton on a very small pension). She's thrown so many years at a shitty relationship, always saying she'd do something about it next week or after a loans paid or after Christmas. Terrible waste of life.

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