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To consider leaving DH if he doesn't sort his health out?

(73 Posts)
lbsjob87 Mon 02-Jan-17 09:04:13

Sounds harsh but hear me out.
We are both 40, together 18 years, married 12, 2dcs (8 and 3).

Neither of us are particularly gym bunnies, and we could eat healthier but while I try my best to fit in exercise and healthy food choices as much as possible, he doesn't.

He works shifts, breakfast is coffee and a cigarette (yes, he smokes, but thinks that because it's outside the house it doesn't affect the kids).
He buys petrol station sandwiches for lunch, or pizzas - his job means he doesn't get a set lunch break and there's no canteen or anything.
I have tried to get him to take in leftovers but he always forgets - he either goes to work before I wake up or when I am at work so I can't physically give it to him.

I have suggested we go to the gym or even a walk together so many times, but he is always too tired or makes another excuse.
He will happily wander round shops for hours, but hates anything that involves being outside.

He does most of the cooking because although I am a reasonable cook, he insists on hovering around, telling me what he would do, and then commenting when it's cooked that it's "OK, but I would have added this/done that". So I gave up.

He is easily 5st overweight - every night he snores like a train, this has got worse the heavier he's got.

Plus he's had a hacking cough for FIVE months, which keeps me (and him) up most of the night.

As I said he started smoking again and has made several half hearted attempts to stop, but admits he doesn't want to.

Just recently, he has been getting lots of muscle pain in his upper back, and his breath smells like rotten eggs, especially when he burps. It is literally sickening.

He refuses point blank to see a doctor. His dad died just over a year ago, from cancer. His dad was exactly the same, stubborn, and had his particular symptoms for over four years before he was forced to see a doctor because he ended up in hospital.

My DH is supposed to have a yearly check up to make sure he hasn't got his dad's symptoms (he has a 1 in 3 chance because his dad had it). He was supposed to go in November, he hasn't been.

But he was like this long before that happened so I don't think it's connected.

If I make him appointments, he either cancels or just doesn't turn up. His mum has tried getting through to him.
The common response is "It'll be alright, stop nagging."
I've told him he stands to leave his kids without a dad, he says "Yeah, I know. But I might get hit by a bus tomorrow."

I'm not saying he will definitely get cancer, but he is heading for an early grave, and to be honest I don't think I can stop him.

So I am considering leaving, and letting him get on with it. It sounds harsh, but when i think about the future, I genuinely don't see him in it, and I don't want to be the one to wake up and find him dead in bed.

The kids idolise him, but I think it would be easier for them to live apart from him and shock him into action than to live without him permanently.

Am I an absolute bitch or not?

slightlyglitterbrained Mon 02-Jan-17 09:14:17

I don't think you're a bitch at all. You sound at the end of your tether and I don't blame you.

I don't have any answers but wanted to post to express sympathy.

dudsville Mon 02-Jan-17 09:16:20

I think it's an odd reason to leave someone. Do you otherwise not like him anymore?

snapcrap Mon 02-Jan-17 09:17:49

Of course you're not a 'bitch' (hate that word!).

But the agonising thing is that you can't force him to change.

I've known many blokes like this and they always have to have a moment of clarity or a serious health scare. For my friend's husband it was actually splitting his trousers at their 25th anniversary party in front of 100 people!

You telling him you want a divorce might actually be the final wake up call for him. If he doesn't react to it with some serious life style changes then you have your answer.

ChapstickLegends Mon 02-Jan-17 09:17:51

I agree with the above. He's asking you to be complicit in his self-destruction, and it isn't fair on you.

I have on occasion forced my DP to go to the doctor by explaining shouting that it's not fair on me to let me worry about an obvious health problem he has (eg a stubborn cough), so I know where you're coming from.

Squeegle Mon 02-Jan-17 09:18:23

I understand where you are. You can't tell him what to do, but you can tell him what will work for you to live with. In a marriage it's insupportable that you should live with someone who will not listen to your concerns and care about there health. I think you can leave, if you truly think this will improve your life and stop you worrying. It may have the effect you wish for and he may take you seriously, or he may not. You need to be aware of this when you tell him what you are doing.

llangennith Mon 02-Jan-17 09:22:18

Totally with you OP.

ShowMePotatoSalad Mon 02-Jan-17 09:26:57

When I first started reading your post I was a bit sceptical but the more you elaborated the more I think YANBU.

You can't make him change - he makes his own choices. But then again so do you, so if you want to leave him because of this then that's understandable.

MatildaTheCat Mon 02-Jan-17 09:29:53

I sympathise. My dh is very head in the sand with some health related stuff though nothing like as bad as this. I have tackled one thing at a time rather than trying to do it all at once which is too much.

Top priority must be to see GP re cough. Make the appointment and yes, tell him he is going or else. If it's a good GP they will recognise the fear behind this and tread gently.

If he can be persuaded to change at all it will be painfully slow and probably very frustrating for you. My own dh is still to go back re his blood pressure after months. I will be making that appointment tomorrow.

MrsWooster Mon 02-Jan-17 09:32:10

It does sound harsh but I empathise; dp is drinking very heavily and is affecting his his health - invisibly and also apparently, in that it affects his memory, mood in the mornings etc. Perhaps warning him how you're feeling and where it is leading to? I don't have the nerve or will-yet- but, like you, I can't let things go on until the kids see him degenerate.

Ciutadella Mon 02-Jan-17 09:51:32

That is so difficult for your op. A hacking cough for 5 months keeping you up in the night is an absolute reason to go to the gp - in fact I think the guideline is any cough lasting more than 3 weeks. And then there is the fact that he is supposed to have a yearly check up anyway and hasn't, which must be very alarming for you (and him).

Not sure what I would do in your position - you say you've made appointments and he hasn't kept them? Have you tried speaking to the gp yourself - maybe s/he would send a 'reminder' letter which might persuade him? I realise that's only a short-term solution though.

whyohwhy000 Mon 02-Jan-17 09:55:13

He's had a cough for five months?! I thought you were meant to go to GP if you had a cough lasting more than three weeks.

SuburbanRhonda Mon 02-Jan-17 10:01:35

And presumably if he's snoring he's keeping you awake with that too? What a nightmare.

Could you wrest back control of the cooking? Ignore his comments while you cook (put music on - I always do) and cook filling but healthy meals. I think you should try a few things first before leaving but I wouldn't blame you if you've already had enough.

Zippidydoodah Mon 02-Jan-17 10:04:01

He might not care about his own health, but if he cares about you and his kids, he has a responsibility to go and see a doctor. Yanbu.

dangermouseisace Mon 02-Jan-17 10:05:19

YANBU. Living with someone and being faced with their refusal to sort their shit out every minute is a lot more stressful than only seeing them occasionally and they can run themselves into the ground in peace and quiet, and you can relax in your own space. You've tried to help him, he won't accept it and now you are at the end of your tether. You obviously care deeply about him and are worried- he does need to sort it out and only he can do it.

With the 'might get run over by a bus' anology, yes that's true, but he's doing the equivalent of standing in the middle of the motorway.

specialsubject Mon 02-Jan-17 10:22:18

Tell him that you want wills and pensions secured asap, as he is trying hard to die early and you need to protect yourself. If that isn't a wake up call, then sadly the game is over.

Lorelei76 Mon 02-Jan-17 10:32:55

I think everyone has a right to live as they please without harming others
But that includes you
Who wants to live with someone like that?
But be aware he might not see it as a wake up call, you might just split and that will be it. I get a sense that you think you might shock him into change but that's not necessarily the case.

blitheringbuzzards1234 Mon 02-Jan-17 10:39:51

Agree that it will probably take a shock to make him face up to this and change his ways. Lots of people (often men) don't like to see the GP unless there's something specific that's wrong but in a head in the sand mindset it may be really serious and they don't want to hear that either.
Maybe you could tell him that his refusal to do anything about it is making you ill with worry?

Ilovecaindingle Mon 02-Jan-17 11:47:09

Tell him you did mean your vows about the in sickness and health bit but you hadn't anticipated it being when he was still in his 40,s when you also have young children to also look after. If he wants to continue to be so selfish he will have to leave as you aren't prepared for the kids to witness his decent into an early grave.

Olympiathequeen Mon 02-Jan-17 15:41:20

My mother was like you. Worrying about my dad. Smoking, eating shite and stressing over nothing (not overweight though)

He had a massive heart attack at 43.

She just shut down in the end because the worrying was too much especially the smoking and drinking more than he should. His health is shot to pieces now.

I think I would leave too rather than have everyday like that.

FestiveStinkyPants Mon 02-Jan-17 15:48:44

Totally with you op!

I know this isn't on the same scale but my OH has ibs, he knows what sets it off and continues to eat it. Then he is in agony for days, he takes painkillers so he can work and then comes home and lies in bed! All the bloody time.

Maybe the threat of divorce will give your OH the kick up the bum he needs??

dowhatnow Mon 02-Jan-17 15:52:36

If he's prepared to lose you and the kids over it, then you should leave as he isn't concerned about you at all.
Hopefully it'll kick his arse into gear.

EmeraldIsle100 Mon 02-Jan-17 16:00:24

You are not being one bit unreasonable. I would have a talk with him and tell him that you are going to see a solicitor to see where you stand finanically in the event of a split on the grounds of his unreasonable behaviour. This might make him see how serious you are.

If he scoffs at this I would ask him to leave and if he refuses I would start to make plans for yourself and the children to leave.

It doesn't necessarily mean you are throwing in your cards but it will make it clear to him that you are not putting up with someone who is self sabotaging and could potentially render you as a full time carer when you are a relatively young woman.

He obviously has issues but if he refuses to address them I think it is perfectly reasonable for your to make arrangements to protect yourself and the DC from watching him put himself in an early grave.

ohtheholidays Mon 02-Jan-17 16:01:25

Could you show him this thread OP or would it make things worse?

If not then honestly I'd write him a letter and tell him just how you feel and what your going to do(leave him)if he doesn't at least see the Dr about his cough.

ChicRock Mon 02-Jan-17 16:09:18

Quite aside from the health implications of his lifestyle...

Five stone overweight, hacking cough for months, mouth like an ashtray and breath that smells of rotting eggs - sounds delightful confused. I'm guessing your sex life is non existent.

I honestly think you've done everything you possibly can here, including actually making gp appointments for him.

So yeah it's time to put up or shut up.

I'd be off.

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