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Having panicky attacks about my marriage

(63 Posts)
Charlie1972 Tue 30-Jul-13 13:02:26

Advance Warning: Male poster alert!

Feeling kinda scared about posting up on a) an internet forum and b) as a male poster on a female board but i'm past that now. Deep breath.

Me, 40, Been married 5yrs, gorgeous daughter nearly 3. DW, 35

I found out last Thursday that my world has been turned upside down with revelations about my marriage which has yet to truly subside.

Had a phone call on Thursday from my parents who asked me to come over after work. Thought that someone had died, so arrived already in a state of apprehension and when I found my rather solid parents on the verge of tears, to hear from them that my wife had blurted out earlier on that afternoon that our marriage was in tatters and all sorts of things were 'wrong' that I just couldnt contain myself. Burst into tears and couldnt stop. Easily the most embarassing, emotionally humiliating and disturbing 1-2-1 i've ever had with my folks in my life.

Went home later that evening and had a frank chat with DW, and if it couldn't get any worse, I found that she's slept with a male friend down the street and I totally lost it. Never felt so angry, betrayed, hurt and just dead inside. I was just screaming my face off into a pillow. I think if I'd just heard that my parents had died or something, I'd have reacted less than that. DW seemed unphased with telling me and apparantly because ive been neglectful of our relationship - which I refute - and that she has low self esteem and that new 'friend' made her feel special – A bloke who I actually quite liked TBH, nice enough, a mans man man IYKWIM.

I knew that DW was flirting with another local male friend over the last three months via text/phone but apparently came to nothing but saucy photos and innuendo and I believe that story and before we were married, I knew of a 'kissing' relationship with one of her work colleagues which I just put down to a bit of silly pre-marital flirting.

The more recent emotional flirt has got me down over the last few months and I' decided to keep schtum to keep a marriage and family going, turning a blind eye hoping it'd blow over, which I think it did, but the sex relationship has utterly floored me and the mental images of them at it just won't leave my head days and days later. I'm not sleeping, feel like a volcano all the time, and I can t really focus on work properly.

I'm trying to play happy families and I want us to work on the issues that involve me that do have merit - household stuff - but they're driven by the fact i've been harbouring knowledge of whats been going on. Its circular. But nothing's that 'bad' that warrants this event whatsoever.

I'm rambling sorry.

I dont want a divorce and having to go through all the crap that entails, we've got a daughter who deserves two committed parents and I dont think I can cope with a split, especially with the raw deal Dad's get from the justice system ;-(. The dark thoughts i've had in the middle of night awake in bed about all of that scare me utterly witless and i'm sure its classed as a panic attack.

All through this, DW seems completely unphased, and remarkably calm. Maybe masking emotions too, or maybe further down the line of the siutation than me - I just dont know.

I don't even know where I'm going with this post now, I'm lost

Thank you for listening, reading. Its cathartic to have written that.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Tue 30-Jul-13 14:22:10

Oh! X post. A MNer! And there I go from this thread.

Vivacia Tue 30-Jul-13 14:22:20

"...she's a MNetter too. Sorry."

Oh dear. Why do you say "sorry"? I don't know how to say this nicely, but are you feeling smug at having set her up?

AgathaF Tue 30-Jul-13 14:28:01

What made you come to MN to post what happened? Did you want to force a confrontation with her, or did you recognise that you could get support here for yourself? You need to be honest about your intentions here.

CogitoErgoSometimes Tue 30-Jul-13 14:31:53

If the story's true, it doesn't actually matter if the DW is an MN-er. As I said before, even if the OP was the DH from hell, it would not make what has happened subsequently any more justifiable. OTOH if you're winding the job up OP.... get your tin hat on because hell hath no fury like an MN-er on the wrong end of a pisstake.

Charlie1972 Tue 30-Jul-13 14:32:59

I came here to see what the viewpoint might be from a more understanding audience, which has helped. No smugness deliberately attached, not the intention at all, just being straight out with people. I guess it doesn't make a lot of actual difference all in all...

ImperialBlether Tue 30-Jul-13 14:33:01

I really hate this sort of thing. I feel safe here on MN. If someone I knew came on here to start a thread about me when I was in a stressful situation, I would feel as though a lifeline had been taken from me.

Another one who won't post on here, or at least until the OP's wife comes on.

fabergeegg Tue 30-Jul-13 14:40:21

Random question. How do you know the acronyms that are used on mumsnet? It seems strange to me.

On the face of it, your DW seems very manipulative, especially in going to your parents and failing to acknowledge her infidelity has wronged you. But there's so much we don't know. Have you been shutting her out? Have you two been going out together? Have you been talking to her like she's a friend?

If things are this bad and you honestly haven't noticed anything much before now, I think that perhaps she's right when she feels like you haven't been there for her. There's nothing particularly noble about knowing your other half is conducting a mild flirty affair and digging your head in the sand for the sake of the family. I'm not excusing what she's done for one moment, but it should have alerted you to the fact that this relationship needs a lot of work. Maybe she is just a nasty piece of work through and through - or maybe she's been ignored and desperate for a long time now.

I've noticed that posters here often respond to men by either vilifying them or vilifying their partners (which is mainly why men seem to make it to mumsnet - my husband started a thread once and then carried the laptop triumphantly to show me what a bitch everyone had decided I was - on ^half the story!^). Anyway, rant over - just be careful that you don't lose sight of your wife's humanity in this onslaught of motherly kindness. You won't be innocent. No one ever is.

fabergeegg Tue 30-Jul-13 14:42:12

Just read the recent replies. Not much chance of that happening, actually.

Charlie1972 Tue 30-Jul-13 14:42:45

Fair point taken fabergeegg

fedupofnamechanging Tue 30-Jul-13 14:43:04

Charlie, the only way you can really fix this, is if she is genuinely sorry for what she has done and is prepared to do whatever it takes to repair the marriage. If she isn't, then no matter how much you want to stay together and make it work, you are only postponing the inevitable. You wife has to love you and respect you, for there to be any chance.

People who cheat tend to justify it to themselves by making out that they have only done it because their spouse was neglectful or horrible in some way. They know it is shoddy behaviour, so have to make it somehow their spouse's fault, in order to live with themselves. It is not your fault though - no matter what is going on in a marriage they have made a choice to lie and deceive,, when they could have tried to put the marriage right or end the marriage. That's the truth of it.

I think it is good that you have support from your parents - it's better than struggling all on your own with this.

I think you should take a hard line here and force her to really think about and face some consequences. I would be asking her to move out, for now at least and to share parenting - don't allow her to just move out with your child. I think I would be hammering home just what the new reality will be like for her, if she doesn't sort her shit out.

If you have posted here to get back at her, in some way, I wouldn't condemn you for that, under the circumstances.

fedupofnamechanging Tue 30-Jul-13 14:46:11

And I think people bury their heads in the sand and 'ignore' the warning signs because it is stressful for them too and they are not mentally ready to face up to it all - it can be a self protection mechanism.

Charlie1972 Thu 01-Aug-13 23:21:33 a couple of days change things.

Had a Weds evening of calmer discussion (for me) and since the fog of emotion had died down, some Q's were forthright, and to the point, basic questions of my issues with her honesty, future trust issues, her lying versus my inability to percieve her mood, depression, stress, etc.

Today, came home from work to find DW had taken DD from my parents who mind her on a Thursdy and has gone AWOL. No idea where htey are, no idea when theyre coming back, no discussion, no nothing.

I was utterly devastated last week, but calmed down, now I exposed more problems and she runs off.

Can she do this? Have I any recourse, or do I have to dance to her tune?

Numb, just numb.

skyeskyeskye Thu 01-Aug-13 23:32:28

Have you tried contacting her? She is wrong to just take off with your DD like that.

If your wife is unwilling to work on the marriage and sort things out, which I think would need lots of counselling to work out what you both want, then the marriage is really over.

You need good legal advice ASAP .

I am sorry that you find yourself in this situation. She does not seem to be treating you very fairly.

AgathaF Fri 02-Aug-13 07:23:51

What an awful thing to do. I've no idea what you should do now, although I think in your shoes, I might be phoning the police and certainly taking legal advice.

What did you parents say about how she was when she arrived to take your DD, and did she mention her plans to them?

JustinBsMum Fri 02-Aug-13 07:38:16

Don't think I'm surprised, she has planned this out, using your DPs to do the dirty work, being unconcerned at the fall out - you should be planning how to manage a future apart, how will you care for DD, will you move out/she move out etc , but she's pre-empted you.
If she moves far away how will you get access to DD?
You need to sort your position out.

karmabelieversnamechange Fri 02-Aug-13 07:44:51

call the police - she has abducted your child. I would be concerned for their safety, because she is not acting rationally.

karmabelieversnamechange Fri 02-Aug-13 07:57:38

I would also call a solicitor - not certain but I think you could possibly get a court order stopping her from moving your child away from the home

MalcolmTuckersMum Fri 02-Aug-13 08:04:18

Isn't it a bit odd that she's felt desperate enough to go AWOL? Is there a lot more going on than you've told us? And your posting style seems awfully familiar - have you been here before under another name?

AgathaF Fri 02-Aug-13 08:41:38

Please don't start with the troll hunting. Just report the posts if you think they are suspect.

zeprocrastinator Fri 02-Aug-13 08:44:34

Random question. How do you know the acronyms that are used on mumsnet? It seems strange to me.

The acronyms used on Mumsnet are a) very easy to pick up and b) are used all over the Internet! They're universally used on forums. They aren't Mumsnet's special little language. It's really not strange that anyone who is technically literate would know them or be able to find out/work out what they were in less than 5 minutes.

I am always baffled by this idea that Mumsnet is a private of 'safe space'. It's a very high volume and very public forum. It has over 4.3 million unique visitors a month and posts are public and indexed by Google. There are other forums were you need to be a member to view posts and the posts are not cached for perpetuity like Mumnet's are - I would understand this sentiment a lot better if Mumsnet was a small forum were discussions were hidden, but this is one of the biggest UK site and wide open.

zeprocrastinator Fri 02-Aug-13 08:47:58

OP, you need call a solicitor first thing this morning. I am not sure the police will be interested in getting involved at this stage, unfortunately.

Vivacia Fri 02-Aug-13 13:04:31

"Isn't it a bit odd that she's felt desperate enough to go AWOL?"

That's dreadful. I can't imagine a female poster getting asked the same question.

Charlie1972 Fri 02-Aug-13 13:42:00

I had one call to her last night (or was it two) asking why she wasn't home, got the reply that she's gone away, taken DD with her and I found out over the last 12h, that things all over the house are missing.

The joint documents we have for things, house, bank, mortgage, which we have a filing box for, has gone My own hard drive backup has been unwired, unplugged and gone (random, or not...??) and a fair chunk of clothing to last a while.

I'd kept the call civil and told her not to be a daftie, and she's just noit listening. The barriers were well and truly up. There was no getting through, no emotion, its all planned out IMHO and the whole charade is playing out and i'm the one sitting here at work, trying to hold my together in an office of blokes.

I tried to call her folks for a chat last night, they immediately hung up. So they're not going to be helpful which is a shame,

Id almsot go as far to say she's mentally flipped out, and god knows what she's planning.

She'll have work on Monday, and childcare. If she's not back for that, i'll consider that a pretty big indication of inability to look after the welfare of the child, or is that unfeasible?

Brain is doing 100mph - still....nearly 24h on.

PS, and no, i've not got another MN account, dont be so bloomin horrible,

AgathaF Fri 02-Aug-13 13:48:14

If you are seriously worried about her mental state then I think you are perfectly within your rights to speak to the police over this. She has done an appalling thing, apparently without good reason.

fabergeegg Fri 02-Aug-13 17:55:41

OP, I'm sorry to be the one to say it, but your wife is perfectly within her rights to leave you. She doesn't need to explain at this stage if she doesn't feel she can. I appreciate her actions are not considerate or mature, but there is no law saying they have to be - and many women have very good reasons for leaving suddenly. There is no way for us to know if you have placed her in that camp, or not.

You do have a right to know where your child is over the longer term - and, provided you're a fit parent, to have access - but this may well be something that your wife is planning to give you. No, she shouldn't have put you in the position of not knowing where your child is right now - but as I've said, many women have good reasons for that.

Some posters are suggesting that your wife's behaviour is irrational and suggesting that your child is at risk as a result. In your last post, you seem keen to interpret events in that light. I can see nothing that indicates to us how rationally she is behaving, because we don't know the circumstances from her point of view. It may be perfectly rational. And no, not placing your child in childcare on Monday does not constitute inadequate parenting!

If you were found to be mentally controlling and manipulative, keen to discredit your wife's powers of reasoning and quick to turn others against her, that would be justification for her decision to leave without discussion. You do seem a little bit like that, from what I'm reading. Does your wife have to be 'a daftie' to do what she's doing? And perhaps she wanted a backup hard drive for very good reasons of her own! I can think of a few.

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