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Parents - marriage breaking up - help please!

(9 Posts)
HeliumBee Wed 29-Jul-09 09:25:59

I'll try to keep this short.

What's happened:
My Dad has refused to tell my Mum where he is going after having announced he's going on holiday alone. We now find out (once he's gone - and by TEXT) that he's gone abroad to meet 'an old friend' (woman he has always fancied and recently virtually stalked in an effort to track her down).
He's NEVER organised anything EVER. He has only just got a credit card after years of not letting my Mum have one. (Presumably because he was planning this jaunt in his head). He never shows my Mum any affection - he barely looks at her - they are horrible to each other all the time - basically it's (and has been for 20 years at least) a marriage from hell. He is vertually catatonic all the time - rarely speaks - doesnt interact. (I have previously spoken to his Dr in an attempt to sort his mental state out).
I (and to a large extent My Mum) are perfectly happy for him to go away on holiday by himself - great idea (he's actually moving off the sofa for once - unheard of!!!). But why did he have to do the whole cloak and dagger routine? We were seriously considering having him sectioned, have been worried sick he was 'going away' to jump off a cliff.
His communication with my Mum consisted of a text to say where abouts (not specific) he was going and "I'm not sleeping with X so dont even go there".
He lied when asked about where he was going.
When he did get there he sent a text along the lines of "hotel nice, hot but still comfortable, might get my paints out and go and explore" (which is bizarre given how he left, the tone of his previous text and the whole situation.
My Mum rang me at work this morning and was in a right state having not eaten/slept. She was vertually suicidal with worry, disappointment, grief, confusion etc - so I took time off to be with her.
She wants me to be with her when he returns (he said to my sister he was coming back on Saturday (though we dont know the time).
What do I do/say when he comes back?
It feels like I am organising some sort of intervetion type effort (though only with my Mum and me).
Any advice on dealing with probably marriage breakup of parents all welcomed as its a bit stressful and I dont know what to do!!!
Their MAJOR obstacle is that they (but mostly my Dad) just WONT talk. He literally says nothing or just walks away/goes out.
I feel bad for them both and they are both unhappy but I just know that come Saturday when he returns they'll just not say anything about it to each other and get even more unhappy and bitter.
My intentions are mostly honourable in that I want to help them both be happy (even if this does mean a bit of a trauma and breaking up etc).
However - there's also my own interests too - I am heartily sick of there always being an atmosphere - it poisened mine and my sisters childhoods (and I think directly resulting in her having mental health problems - anorexia etc) -I wont let them babysit my children together (which means I never get a break) and often feel ill after spending time there. TBH I just want it to finish - or a decision one way or t'other (I hate being in limbo about things like this).
(Well done - you got to the end of this post!)

sayithowitis Wed 29-Jul-09 11:29:21

Don't know what to suggest because I think you could find yourself in a very sticky situation tbh. You are going to have to tread very carefully to ensure that at some point in the future, you are not blamed for one or both parents being unhappy either by remaining in the marriage or by splitting. It could be that they will see you as the cause of their unhappiness.

I feel sad for you at being put in what I think is an impossible no win situation.

AnyFucker Wed 29-Jul-09 11:32:19

didn't you post this yesterday ?

Mintyy Wed 29-Jul-09 11:35:03

Use the opportunity of him being away to have long and serious talks with your mum re. whether or not she wants to stay in this marriage. It sounds hellish from the outside and this jaunt of your fathers sounds like the perfect reason to file for divorce on the grounds of unreasonable behaviour.

Does your mum have a friend or sister she could talk to about it? It does seem a bit much to heap all on your shoulders.

I am assuming you would like them to split up? It truly sounds like their marriage is beyond repair.

ginnny Wed 29-Jul-09 11:38:05

I think you should stay out of it as far as possible.
It is their marriage and they have to decide to end it (or not) for themselves.
Your Dad has behaved appallingly but your Mum has put up with him for years so she may be very afraid to end the marriage and go it alone.
Just be supportive without getting to involved.

HeliumBee Wed 29-Jul-09 21:38:33

Thanks - I am worried about appearing to 'persuade' my Mum to divorce him. It is grim - and in very many ways extremely bizarre (you just couldnt IMAGINE what she has found in his pockets - it's like something from a film! - and not a believable one!!).
My Mum doesnt have any family (no siblings - and no close friends). I have endevoured to get her to speak to someone suggesting the samaritans etc but she just wont.
If I learn any lesson from this - it's dont keep things in pockets!!! (It's the first place people look!)

tryingherbest Thu 30-Jul-09 16:46:07

Sorry you're going through this. I have a bit of experience.

My dps had horrible relatinship and I was 23 when they finally divorce- different situation - my dad had multiple extramarital relationshipss and my mum just got more bitter.

I was actually releived when they divorced although it was very nasty and full of lies from my dad.

However, I was an only child and I pretty much administered the divorce for my mum and I ended up knowing much mnore than I was comfortable with and I feel you will do the same. Be very careful as a divorce should mean that you are also bereved but if you end up parenting your parents you will be denied the berevement process for yourself.

HeliumBee Fri 31-Jul-09 13:05:13

Thanks tryuingherbest - I am beginning to feel like I will be administering - and good point about the bearvement. What shold I do to be careful? Is there anything you wish you had/hadnt done? Any tips or advice gratefully received - havent really spoken to anyone outside very immediate family (who clearly are embroiled anyway) so hard to get perspective.

HeliumBee Fri 31-Jul-09 13:07:54

p.s My Mum (and I) are genuinely worried about my Dads state of mental health - and he's just got a credit card which is funded from their joint account.Should my Mum take steps to prevent him spending lots of money (and if so - what are those steps?!?!)

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