Separation - how?(4 Posts)
Hi I'm new here- looking for some advice and a bit of a sounding board. I've told my H I want to end our marriage. His response was that his behaviour is because he is depressed and had been signed-off sick by GP for 2 months. Saw Relate counsellor yesterday, she suggested his controlling behaviour sounds like emotional abuse. Have 2 teenage girls, worried about this relationship as a role model, and don't want to ask them to choose, or to leave their home.
I can't be the baddy and leave if he's ill & depressed. I don't work (studying).
I don't know how to move forward - any thoughts?
Alisalis, what a difficult position you are in. The Relate counsellor may be right but what do you think? You know him best. Is his behaviour uncharacteristic and due to his depression? Even if it is, you are not responsible for him. Is he seeking support to help himself in your view? You can only do what is right for you and your girls. Do you want to leave or do you want to find a way back? If you feel you are being emotionally manipulated by him, get support. If for you your marriage is over (and it may not have anything to do with his depression) find ways to communicate this to him and remember that you are not responsible for his emotional well being. I know that may sound glib and easy for me to say, but you cannot stay for fear of what he might do. That is emotional abuse. If you have a genuine concern that he may do something to harm himself if you leave, you need to share your concerns with his GP.
Hi DivorceAlchemist and thank you for your thoughts. Yes his behaviour is long term, the depression diagnosis is new. And only happened when I asked for us to separate.
I've had enough of trying. your point about not being responsible for him is a powerful one, especially when I follow it up with the thought that I am responsible for the kids wellbeing.
Hi alisalis & welcome to Mumsnet
Did you know he had been signed off sick? Do you believe that he is depressed? That then leads onto whether you think his behaviour is caused by depression or whether the depression is an excuse to behave this way, if you see what I mean? A kind of 'get out of jail free' where he can do whatever he wants & get away with it by blaming it on depression.
Bluntly, if you want to leave your marriage for whatever reason, you can, you do not need his permission. How he chooses to deal with that is up to him, once the decision has been made then you are no longer responsible for his happiness or wellbeing & what he chooses to do thereafter. You are his wife, not his carer ordained by god or someone who HAS to stay with no matter what. You have choices & if you want to leave then that's OK, there are plenty of us who have done it
You are right about your daughters, you are modelling their idea of how an adult relationship works & you do not want them to think that this is a healthy relationship & to base their adult relationships upon it. Are they being damaged by his behaviour?
If you are thinking of divorcing then maybe seek legal advice either with a solicitor or with the CAB (your husband doesn't need to know). Depending on your circumstances you may not have to leave your home & you need to know where you stand with any joint assets. Its easy to assume that because you are the one making the decision then you have to move out but its not the case. Get some advice & you will feel more in control of what he can/can't do. Particularly if he starts making threats about the house or 'custody' of your daughters. Also open a bank account in your name only if you don't already have one.
Regarding the emotional abuse, if you think that the depression is a tool for him to say/do anything he likes with no repercussions & bearing in mind what the Relate counsellor said then I'd definitely look into it further. Domestic abuse can include a whole load of stuff like gaslighting, controlling who you see or where you go, making you feel worthless, blaming you for everything etc etc
As a first step maybe try to work out if his behaviour is emotional abuse? In your heart what do you think?
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