To tell the truth even though it might kill him?

(113 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

letsleepingbabieslie Sat 21-Nov-20 18:22:19

DH has been struggling with major mental health issues for several years. I have been doing all I can to support him. Recently found out he has cheated on me, acting out ‘a desire to self destruct and destroy everything’. He tried to kill himself when I found out. He knows I am hurt, but I have been hiding the full extent of it because I’m afraid if I tell him how I really feel the guilt will tip him over the edge.He is about to begin major therapy and medical intervention to try to address his personal issues.
Do I keep pretending I’m ok, carry on supporting him as best I can, and deal with the damage to our relationship when he’s in a more stable place? Or do I let it all out now and force him to deal with it, even though it’s the worst possible time?
We have young children. I’m financially dependent on him. The suicidal feelings are very real and not empty threats. This could genuinely end him. But I am in so much pain too.

OP’s posts: |
BungleBoo Sat 21-Nov-20 18:26:23

It's a tricky one and have been in your shoes too

I guess it depends on what you want in long run, so you see a future for you as a couple?

Mental health problems doesn't exonerate breach of trust, he still needs to face the consequences of his actions unless he was totally incapacitated by illness

RandomMess Sat 21-Nov-20 18:26:28

I actually think that's something you would need to ask his mental health team. Do any of them every speak with you to find out how he is at home/with you?

Winter2020 Sat 21-Nov-20 18:28:48

Personally I think you need to be strong for now. If you choose to leave him later so be it but let him get the meds/help for his crisis to pass (assuming you/your kids are not at risk from him).

You mention you are financially dependent. Is this part of the pressure on him. Can you look for a job? I realise this is massively complicated if he is in no state to look after your kids unless you have other family to help.

PotteringAlong Sat 21-Nov-20 18:30:23

If you want to end the relationship because he cheated on you then you are absolutely in your rights to do that. If there is no long term future for you then it might be better to do it now whilst he is being supported with intensive involvement from the mental health team than later when he is left to deal with it by himself.

And, perhaps callously but practically, if you are that financially dependent on him, I would be looking out the life insurance policies now and checking that you are covered for suicide.

LemonBar Sat 21-Nov-20 18:30:28

I don't see a point in telling him and I see more harm.. if you didnt have the children i wouldnt care so much but with him being a dad i wouldnt want to trigger him. They say if they suicide its not our fault, but really we all know the guilt and what ifs would always haunt us. Its not a choice between pretend to be ok or lay it into him.
For one, get support and therapy of your own, express your anger in a diary or vent to your therapist. You dont have to pretend to forgive him but you dont have to have the talk now either.

LemonBar Sat 21-Nov-20 18:32:07

I dont know of any insurance that pays out for suicide..happy to be corrected though.


Leaannb Sat 21-Nov-20 18:36:39

How long has he had suicidal ideations?

lughnasadh Sat 21-Nov-20 18:36:53

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

PotteringAlong Sat 21-Nov-20 18:37:43

@LemonBar mine does, but not within 2 years of the policy being taken and not for mental health conditions not disclosed / that pre-existed the policy.

It’s the kind of thing that, if the worst really does happen, you don’t want to be dealing with so it’s best to know before you even get there.

20shadesofgreen Sat 21-Nov-20 18:42:40

That sounds so awful for you. It is very difficult OP but I strongly believe you need to get your ducks in a row to leave, speak to the mental health team and leave as soon as you realistically can. As adults that is often not as simple as just walking out the door, it may take some time but even knowing that you will do this will be taking some control of a situation where someone else has currently got control.

You are actually is an extremely emotionally abusive relationship. The fact that he can use his mental health to trap you while at the same time cheating on you is a huge betrayal. I also think that by being effectively trapped from having your own emotions validated and even just heard is inadvertently seriously damaging you.

Loveable1 Sat 21-Nov-20 18:44:11

You say you are dependent on him but even so do you actually want to be with him??

This has been going on for 2 years do you want your children to continue living in this situation? As they grow they will realise that things are not normal.

You need to sit down and really think about your future and your kids future. They should be your priority not your husband. You have suffered long enough it is not like you have not given him time to get his mental health sorted.

I really do feel for your husband and his mental health I too suffer every now and again, but I would not want this to interfere with my family long term.

Good luck opflowers

Safeguardingconcern Sat 21-Nov-20 18:47:24

Oh OP, what a difficult situation. Of course, whatever you do, you will not be responsible for his actions. If he kills himself, it will not be your fault. You have a right to feel what you feel, and you should be able to express that if you need to.

My concern would be that you would struggle to live with the consequences if he did choose to end it. It absolutely wouldn't be your fault, but you might still feel guilt or regret about having told him. You might feel bad for your children also. However, keeping quiet isn't necessarily a "safe" option either, as your own mental health may suffer and your resentment may grow.

Ultimately, it's a balancing act between the cost to you of not saying anything, and the possible consequences of sharing what you feel. There is no right or wrong answer here. You owe him nothing. You will just have to do whatever feels right to you at this point in time, and accept that there will probably be consequences for you and your children either way.

It sounds like a very difficult situation. Please be kind to

Chailatte20 Sat 21-Nov-20 18:47:25

For now do nothing but start preparing to leave however long that takes. Take time to sort out your life admin, finances, up skill yourself in order to get a job. Find out how much benefits etc you'll be entitled to as a single parent.

How old are the children? Are you entitled to free childcare hours? If so, then take it and enrol at college and train yourself up. Get a voluntary job one day a week to get a current reference for a future job.

Get yourself counselling too to start rebuilding your confidence and putting up barriers. It'll be a tough few years but you can do it if you plan it properly as then you'll be less likely to return.

Contact Women's aid and get them to help you plan your escape properly.

Good luck.

Safeguardingconcern Sat 21-Nov-20 18:49:19

And yy, start making plans to leave at a later date if you choose. Get your financial ducks in a row etc.

GabsAlot Sat 21-Nov-20 18:56:59

maybe wait depending hw treatment goes but mental health isnt an excuse to cheat on someone that always sounds like a cop out

jessstan1 Sat 21-Nov-20 18:57:17

letsleepingbabieslie, I think your first step should be to become financially independent of your husband.

I sympathise with him (understand the 'self destruct' impulse), but also with you; it is possible that treatment may only be effective for a short while or not at all and you will be back to square one. How often can you take the sort of stuff he dishes out? Becoming well entails facing up to how much you have hurt others.

By all means stick by and support your husband for now and I pray it all works out for you both - but you need an escape route. Start planning now.

Takethewinefromtheswine Sat 21-Nov-20 19:01:15

He didn't prioritise your feelings when he went shagging about, but you should keep quiet so as not to upset him further?
You cannot fix the marriage if you are not allowed to say how you feel. The less you can say, the more resentful you will become. At what point would you be able to say anything, when it is so far away, there's no point going back over it?

WhatTheFuckHappenedHere Sat 21-Nov-20 19:03:22

OP I’m not sure you’ll get the most reasonable responses in AIBU flowers

HollowTalk Sat 21-Nov-20 19:03:29

You are suffering so much because of him. Put yourself first. Talk to his team if you think that would help but make steps to get out of the relationship.

user1915482548253840 Sat 21-Nov-20 19:04:28

People who mean to kill themselves just do.

Not true.

LucyLemons Sat 21-Nov-20 19:04:34

Not so suicidal that he couldn't shag around then?

It's a tricky one but you could end up tip toeing round him for years on end. His feelings and thoughts and mental health issues don't trump yours.

I'd make plans to leave him but read carefully for now

Nothingwillcomeofnothing Sat 21-Nov-20 19:06:23

The “ self destruct “ mechanism doesn’t take into account all of the other lives that are destroyed in the process.
You need to look after yourself and your children in the first instance.
Maybe once he has gone through the therapy there may be a way forward for you both as a couple or for you all as a family.

GaryTheDemon Sat 21-Nov-20 19:06:25

Oh OP flowers that whole situation is horrendous! I don’t know what I’d do but I think I would start developing plans to leave, get back in the work place, get childcare, develop my own support circle. I wouldn’t stay with him long term. I don’t honestly know what I’d do now.

LemonBar Sat 21-Nov-20 19:09:00

Having reckless sex and affairs can be a symptom of a mental health crisis, of course they can. Most cheaters when caught don't threaten or attempt suicide. Even though it is morally reprehensible saying well he cant be that suicidal then is really not helpful. It's not one or the other, you can be mentally healthy and cheat, you can be suicidal and cheat or not cheat.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in