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Advice needed for friend in mentally abusive marriage

(6 Posts)
tryingtobegoodfriend Mon 21-Sep-09 13:07:32

Hi all,

I've namechanged for this. Hope that's ok!

Ok. Here's the thing. I have a good friend who married her husband earlier on this year. Just days after the marriage he attempted suicide after an argument. He took pills and alcohol and was only found by luck in time (genuine attempt - he had left a note too). He was released from hospital a couple of days later, and the following day threatened again.

My dh went to help our friend as she was beside herself. Dh managed to get him taken into hospital but he was released again just hours later.

They seemed to be coping with this, and he was seeing a therapist. However, after seeing him get a text from another wonam last week, our friend has now discovered that her husband has been collecting what she terms "nasty" porn, he has been on dating websites, receiving emails into secret accounts from women, getting texts and has met two of them. He claims not to have had sex with them.

I think she asked him to leave, but he basically said he would kill himself. We know it's not an idle threat.

Obviously this can't go on, she can't stay in a marriage like this, so how does she do it without feeling guilty if he did do something? Is there an organisation I can recommend to her?

Other than the usual things like offer our help, I don't know what to do for her.

Thanks in advance.

tryingtobegoodfriend Mon 21-Sep-09 14:06:08


lucky1979 Mon 21-Sep-09 14:18:24

It's absolutely horrible, but she can't be blackmailed for the rest of her life. Does he have friends, relatives that she can contact and alert them that she is leaving, she has to leave, but detail her worries about suicide? Can she alert his psychiatrist?

If he's genuinely that suicidal, I believe that, as a close relative she can apply to have him assessed and sectioned under the mental health act. A close relative of mine was sectioned due to attempting suicide and it saved her life, it's not like having someone committed forever or anything like that, it can be the best way to allow people to work out their problems, sort out their medication in a protected environment.

Can't stress enough though, she CAN'T let him blackmail her to stay, otherwise she will ruin her own life.

mathanxiety Mon 21-Sep-09 17:23:25

Agree with lucky. If he's already tried it, the process shouldn't be too difficult. Do any suicide prevention organisations offer counseling for people left behind or people in your friend's circumstances?

tryingtobegoodfriend Wed 23-Sep-09 07:56:47

Thanks for the replies. I don't know any organisations to suggest, but will have to google and see if I can find any.

We'll just have to see how it goes, but if she stays with him, imho she's ruining her life. Horrid situation. sad

cestlavielife Wed 23-Sep-09 12:28:44

she wont be responsible for his decisions - he is an adult. she can tell him to seek help - if he does not it is his problem, not hers.

she cannot be blackmailed - as was said.

to ease the guilt, she can contact health and police about his threats, that is all she can do.

if she does not accept a marriage in which husband is texting other women, she has the right to walk out - regardless of his threats or the consequences for HIS life. that is HIS problem not hers.

urge her to seek counselling for herself.

she can contact MIND or rethink

but she has to separate the two things - if him texting women/porn etc is a deal breaker for her, then she has the right to walk our. regardles of his threats of suicide.

if his suicide threats are genuine, he needs to seek help - she can call GP, 999 etc for him. but she cannot force him to seek help and only police/health can decide if he should be sectioned.

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