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Wife left for another man... then split up with him after 6 weeks...

(66 Posts)
LovingDad42 Tue 10-Jan-17 22:47:46


Sorry, as a man, I feel a bit of an interloper on a site called Mumsnet, but I would really appreciate some advice on my situation. I’ll try to keep it brief…

Bit of background: in 2012 I accidentally found out my wife was planning on walking out on me and taking our (then) 6 year old son with her. I persuaded her to go for sessions at Relate. and after a few months everything seemed ok again. Then in 2014, out of the blue, no indication anything was wrong, I came home from work to discover a note; she’d done just what she’d been planning to do two years previously. I was in pieces, but after about 4 months I’d come to the conclusion that if she could do something like that with no warning once, she could do it again, and that I should just seek a divorce.

Then she said she wanted to come home.

I melted, and accepted her back. She’d taken up running a few years previously, doing the London Marathon for charity, and for various reasons (none of them sufficiently good) I’d not been as supportive of her as I should have been, so I just took this as my punishment.

Move forward to November 2016… again, I accidentally (genuinely, I’ll give details if you want, but trying to keep this as short as possible!) discover that something is wrong, she’s either seeing someone else, or is planning another “moonlight flit”. Three days later, via another note left for me when I get home, I discover it’s actually both. This is two days before my father’s funeral, and a week before our son’s 10th birthday.

This time… I actually felt liberated. She’d been very distant from me for months, almost recoiling from me when I made any attempt at intimacy, and now I knew why. She’d been seeing someone else for 9 months.

Our son, understandably, was, and is, heartbroken. We’d had no rows, no shouting matches, as far as he was concerned, everything was great.

So, here we are in January 2017, and… she tells me they’ve split up. He’s a “selfish **”, apparently. He was paying for the flat they shared, he’s moved out, and she can’t afford the rent, so she’ll have to move in with her mother. She’s currently in a really bad state, mentally. NHS crisis teams, diazepam, the works.

Although a large part of me hates her for how she’s treated me (not to mention our son), I’d be lying if I said I don’t still feel some affection for her, and I don’t like seeing her suffer. Our son, obviously, just wants mummy back. sad

She’s not said so outright, but I fear she’d like to give it another go. And it goes without saying, our son is already assuming we’ll get back together. But… I don’t want to, and feel massively guilty for feeling that way. sad

Anyway… please.. be gentle with me. ;-)

springydaffs Tue 10-Jan-17 22:57:19

You don't have to feel guilty. You will - that's natural, especially when a marriage ends - but you don't have to.

She has really put you through the mill. Or her illness, or whatever it is, has put you through the mill. Regardless, she is her own person and has made her own choices. It's not surprising you simply don't want to go through any more hell.

Divorce is horrible - there's no getting around that (for most people, anyway) - but sometimes there is no choice. Perhaps you could legally separate for the forseeable, to give you the chance to smooth your feathers and get a clearer head.

It may be she'll get effective treatment - who knows? You can't know yet. But for now, you need to protect yourself. You can't stay in a marriage for the sake of your son. It just doesn't work like that.

I'm sorry you've been through so much flowers

Mouikey Tue 10-Jan-17 22:59:35

Don't feel guilty - be there for your son. But don't get back with her for him or out of guilt it won't work

LovingDad42 Tue 10-Jan-17 23:00:45

Thank you, I know you're right, it's just so hard... sad

LovingDad42 Tue 10-Jan-17 23:01:53

FWIW, I think it is her illness, not her. She's had a hell of a life.

TeenageCentaurMortificado Tue 10-Jan-17 23:02:12

Definitely don't feel guilty and don't cave.

If you did, you would always be waiting and watching for the next time.

There's nothing stopping you being civil and maybe even friendly for your child sake but for both your child stability and for your own happiness and self esteem, walk the other way.

Cricrichan Tue 10-Jan-17 23:04:05

I'm sorry for what you've been through and you have nothing to feel guilty about. To leave just before your father's funeral is despicable and regardless of whether it works or not with that man, she obviously doesn't care for you in the slightest. She may want to come back but only temporarily and only because the alternative isn't as nice for her (for the moment).

thestamp Tue 10-Jan-17 23:04:29

She seems to really want to leave. She sounds very, very immature and selfish. "Flitting", unless it's because of abuse in the home which I'd call "fleeing" tbf, is inexcusable. I mean, she has a family ffs. She can't just disappear because she feels like it.

I think you've been through quite a lot. I'm sorry. You've clearly suffered greatly.

I have a feeling that she won't sort herself out until the marriage ends. It sounds like she wants you to be her soft place to fall. Again... she wouldn't have left twice unless she actually, you know, wanted to leave.

You say you feel guilty, but you know what, I wonder if you're thinking wrongly about this? It sounds like she has difficulty making a proper decision and is fearing the very change she knows she wants? I wonder if it's actually kinder to everyone, in the long run, if YOU make the decision to cut the drama and move on?

I mean think of it this way, would you want DS to take a woman back under similar circs?

I think you need to not take her back tbh. She sounds like she needs to take responsibility for herself and her decisions. And I think you need to be able to disengage from the crazy and start focusing on creating a calm, happy home for your DS.

LivininaBox Tue 10-Jan-17 23:04:53

You've been through a lot, it sounds awful. You have nothing to feel guilty about, and i am not sure that taking her back would necessarily be the best thing for your son? She could just do it all over again. Take your time and think things over.

Chloe84 Tue 10-Jan-17 23:06:57

It's not fair on your son. Don't take the easy option of taking her back and going back to the status quo. Time to move on.

Aedh Tue 10-Jan-17 23:07:25

Golly she seems very selfish, maybe it's because of her mh?
Any how, it seems awful for your DS. This yo yoing from your ex is very cruel to you both but especially your child. I suspect stability is the best thing for him even if it means living without his mum. He can still have a relationship with her but not live with her.
So she left her marriage and her child with a note? Just a note to her son? This sounds truly awful. And just as your father died? Worse again. Honestly OP, you and your son will be better without her.

AddToBasket Tue 10-Jan-17 23:08:11

She sounds unwell. Is she? (Unwell, not just in crisis)

It may be that she needs to do some serious work on herself: she sounds as though she isn't good at understanding consequences amongst other things.

Whatever happens you aren't obliged to take her back. Don't be manipulated into it. But, I wouldn't rule it out either. The world isn't full of perfect partners and your son will most likely benefit from having two parents under the same roof.

Btw, be strong and consistent. It's really important for both your DS and W to see you not losing your head over this (freak out in private, on here, to close friends - just don't let them see).

GTS Tue 10-Jan-17 23:10:04

Oh bless you what a horrible situation to be in, for all of you by the sounds of it.
You sound as though you have known for some time that your marriage is over. From the little information you can glean from an internet forum, it sounds as though it would be a mistake to reconcile, regardless of how devastating that may be. That doesn't mean to say that you cannot support her through her illness, whilst trying to maintain a civil relationship with her for all involved. You need to have a heart to heart with your son as soon as possible to nip his expectations in the bud, children are more resilient than you think. Hopefully she will receive the counselling she needs, but try to avoid slipping back into the familiar for the sake of your DS, ultimately it's you that will pay the price. Good luck

LovingDad42 Tue 10-Jan-17 23:11:59

Thanks all for your replies, I never expected so many so quickly...

Aedh, no, she didn't leave the son and me with a note, just me, she took DS (learning the lingo...) with her to their flat, and he hated it, he's been with me almost every day since because she knows he's more happy here. She's a decent person, just very, very messed up.

Deadsouls Tue 10-Jan-17 23:17:17

You are taking on guilt that doesn't belong to you. Your wife sounds practised at eliciting this kind of response. Really it sounds like a nightmare and you're saying you don't want to give it another go. So you shouldn't allow her to set the agenda. You know what you want and keep coming back to that.
Of course, it is devastating for your DS. But in the long run, surely better for him and for you to stick to your guns. What will happen when she does this again? (And most likely is predict that she would once she got back on her feet). Will you both have to endure the hurt and upset.
You cannot keep accommodating her. You have tried to the best of your ability to make things work. You'd be doing her no favours by taking her back either. She's on her journey now and you're on yours. This is the choice she made and these are the consequences that she must come to terms with. Please don't sacrifice your own happiness. In time you may be able to offer her better support, if she needs it, from a distance.

thestamp Tue 10-Jan-17 23:17:33

OP, I feel your pain. I think it's important to understand that when you have a child with a messed up person (who is decent at her core, but has problems, as you say), then unfortunately the answer usually is for you to separate from that person, so that you can create a safe, sane place away from them, for the good of the child.

It hurts and it's not nice but sometimes that's the way things have to be. I'm really sorry all this has happened. It must have been just sheer living hell for you. sad

ohfourfoxache Tue 10-Jan-17 23:19:06

Op, having a MH problem does not entitle ANYONE to behave like a cunt. (I've got MH problems myself btw)

Don't feel guilty- this is not your fault and I'd imagine you're completely sick of her behaviour by now. Personally there isn't a chance in hell that I'd take her back

Aedh Tue 10-Jan-17 23:22:49

Sorry LovingDad42, I misunderstood your op.
You have every right to not want her back. I commend your generosity of spirit for the way you speak of her, but you can offer her support as the mother of your child without returning to what seems like a dysfunctional marriage. I wish you and your son the best of luck and hope you make the right choices for yourself and your son.

LovingDad42 Tue 10-Jan-17 23:23:50

Aedh, thanks smile

LovingDad42 Tue 10-Jan-17 23:24:45

I'm crying, but thanks all sad

Aedh Tue 10-Jan-17 23:27:54

All will be well, in time, things will work out. Have your cry and get it all out or as much as you can.

AgathaF Tue 10-Jan-17 23:37:21

You've tried more than enough to save your relationship. You've been her safety net at least twice before, you really need to think of your own happiness now. I'm sure if you take her back she will simply leave again at some time in the future, and in the intervening months or years, you will be on a knife edge waiting for it to happen.

As others have said, your son deserves a secure home environment, which you are giving him without his mother there. He can still see her and have a good relationship with her whilst she lives elsewhere. He will adjust to this new life, Children do.

Please don't feel guilty. You have nothing to feel guilty for. Just understandable sadness at the ending of your relationship, but that will improve with time as you start to recover.

Benedikte2 Tue 10-Jan-17 23:38:03

Your ex is just using you when she finds herself in a mess. It's sadly not you she wants but respite from her problems and your stability and care.
You are worth more and have given her enough chances, so don't prolong the agony and give your DS false hope. She needs to sort herself out, you need to be there for your DS and to find someone who will appreciate you and with whom you can find happiness.
Good luck

Quimby Tue 10-Jan-17 23:39:20

Get a solicitor, secure all the important financial and personal documents and try to secure any joint accounts.

CakesRUs Tue 10-Jan-17 23:39:27

She's got form to do this again, down the road, if you do take her back. If I were you, I'd stick to my guns and not have her back. You said you felt "liberated" when you found out, I think that's you giving yourself good advice. Lots of women have a hell of a life and MH issues, doesn't give them the right to trample on their family/husband/kids feelings and lives. Good luck.

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