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Divorcing due to DH's mental health

(10 Posts)
Penny2012 Tue 01-Oct-13 21:09:29

My husband of 5 years and father of our son (13m) has moved out. He is suffering with such severe mental health problems that he can't cope with being a husband and father. Has anyone else separated from their partner because of a similar reason?

onepieceoflollipop Tue 01-Oct-13 21:13:41

I have no advice Penny, just wanted to say this must be so hard for all of you. Hope you have some good rl support. I don't have personal experience but am a mental health worker.

Lobo Tue 01-Oct-13 21:45:50

Me and my ex-husband separated due to him not being able to cope with family life last year. I don't know how to advise you really. In the end I accepted it as being for the best for me and the children it was like a dark cloud lifted from our home when he moved out. I hadn't realised how much of an impact the illness was having on our home and life at the time unfortunately his mental health issues still continued after he moved out. For him he believed it would be the cure for his severe depression (poss. bipolar) sadly it wasn't.

If you have any questions I will try to help as best I can.

Penny2012 Wed 02-Oct-13 07:44:45

Lobo it's like I could have written that myself. Did you have any counselling? How long ago did it happen? My family and friends are great but they all have their own problems and I don't want to keep talking to them about it all the time. I have booked some counselling for myself at Relate but really want to connect to people in the same situation as they are the only people who I think understand.

cestlavielife Wed 02-Oct-13 12:44:48

try rethink for a local group ?

counselling for yourself is a good idea

Lobo Wed 02-Oct-13 19:27:01

We tried relate the first time but it wasn't for us. We managed to sort ourselves out on that occasion (his first nervous breakdown). The only thing I found with relate is that the counsellor didn't seem to get the fact he was suffering with a mental illness (basically tried to get us to start negotiating on separation terms) so I think rethink as cest la vie suggested may be better for you as they are mental health focused. You may also like to enquire if his mental health team offer couple counselling as some do. Unfortunately that wasn't an option that me & my ex discussed. I would recommend counselling for yourself as it is domething I may consider in the next few months.

Lobo Wed 02-Oct-13 19:34:34

Sorry just realised I haven't answered all your questions. We separated in June last year however we had been dealing with his mental health issues for a while before that. He had his first breakdown the year before and had been receiving counselling for a few years before that for anxiety and depression. What I will say is please look after yourself and the children and put you first as I didn't do that for a number of years as you get used to picking up the pieces all the time. It took him moving out for me to finally realise what I had been living with for so long x

Penny2012 Wed 02-Oct-13 22:44:13

Thank you to everyone who has

I've spent hours on the phone trying to find a support group but keep being given alternative phone numbers to ring. Because he's moved out, I'm not classed as his carer any more. (How funny that when I he was here I didn't even realise that's what I was) It was after all the dead ends that I decided to book Relate and post on here.

This all kicked off in May. After trying medication and all sorts of awful conversations and situations he left in early July.

I think I'm still in shock. Although I'm gradually having more good days than bad days I still feel very unsettled and have so much to deal with. I cannot believe that my lovely husband is gone and that the life we had - as you say Lobo - had become quite so unhealthy. sad

I am focussing on me and my little boy and am glad that I can stay in our home but there's so much responsibility to be faced alone and so much uncertainty about my future. Although there is hope for us to have a better life, that is somehow lost in the fear right now.

Penny2012 Thu 03-Oct-13 22:57:49


Lobo Sun 06-Oct-13 21:45:40

Hi Penny

Sorry I haven't been on mumsnet since my last post. What I would say is get some legal advice from a solicitor as soon as possible I know it is the last thing you will want to do right now but to protect you and your son financially from how your husband may deal with his finances (mine took out a secret loan and basically spent double his wages in 12 months - a symptom of bipolar/manic depression is excessive spending).

You will get through this as you must be a very strong person to have coped and offer him support through his illness already.

I had the fear you are talking about but I came to realise over time that I already did most things due to his illness and therefore I had already been dealing with the responsibility for some time.

If you ever want a chat or an ear to bend just send me a message x

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