cancer and ending relationships UPDATE
, Dec 23 2012 12:44 PM
13 replies to this topic
Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:44 PM
My husband (of 17 years) has had a realy rough year with his health.
He ende up with a facial skin cancer coming back (had a removal and graft three years ago for the same cancer) but it came back and he had to have the same proceedure again in August. At that time they told him that they thought, from what they could see, that it had gotten into his nerves and would go into his brain, the diagnosis for which was not good at all.
So for two months we thought he was screwed, but the pathology came back that it wasnt in his nerves, although he did have additional surgery to make the margins clearer.
Our relationship has been long and up and down, we have both been pretty dysfunctional, but have also worked really hard in the last 18 months and made massive massive changes to how we relate and feel and treat each other. We have been happier than ever and more healthy and functional than i thought possible - i can confidently say he has felt the same because we have talked about it in therapy together.
Two weeks ago (the night of the 2nd surgery), he couldnt sleep, next day he announced he wanted a divorce, he said the idea came to him in the middle of the night.
He says the mortality issue has made him relaise he wont be happy with me, thats its too hard work.
I am devastated, we have two amazign children (8 and 6) who he adores and who adore him.
He's a really beautiful and good man (though troubled in a lot of ways i guess, but so am i).
He is also a really stubborn man and i have watched in the last two weeks as he has developed this idea and twisted situations and memories to support the concept.
i love him, real love which means that even though i am so sad i do feel massive compassion for him because i see he is hurting too. I think he is confused about how this idea has grown (out of nothing) to seem so rational and certain - i certianly am confused.
I've posted this here in the hope that someone who has dealt with these issues might be able to help me understand what he is going through.
For the record i dont think i can control this, nor stop him if it is what he needs to do, but my i am deeply heartbroken and understanding another perspective may help me cope. If we had been in a rough patch in the marriage this might be easier to accept, but we have literally never been better.
Edited by *birdie*, 07 January 2013 - 02:00 PM.
Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:51 PM
I don't think it is a good idea to make a massive life changing decision when going through a stressful time. Will he try counselling again?
It is clear you really love him, I hope it works out for the best of both of you.
Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:56 PM
Oh god! I'm so sorry
I think the only thing you can do is be there for him when he needs it. He doesn't sound open to any councelling, and pushing the idea might push him away. It might be good to seek some councelling yourself. What a horrible situation.
Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:59 PM
thanks for the replies...
he announced this idea in a couples therapy session, our therapist is really shocked.
he has he own therapist too - there is no shortage of councelling.
Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:19 PM
Is he actually covering up the opposite? That he doesn't want to put you and the children through the heartache of possibly losing him to the cancer? I have heard of that happening but don't know if/of anyone who's ever really done that.
Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:36 PM
Just thought i would update.
He is leaving - he ended a 17 year relationship via email, after hanging up on me.
I'm pretty much heart broken, confused and terribly sad.
Not helped by the fact that he is being really hostile (in a passive aggressive way) and hurtful. I guess for me the only thing worse than him walking out, is him walking out in such a cruel way and dishonouring what we have built and shared for the last two decades.
He's the only man i have ever loved - so (at 38) this is my first heartbreak - wow, it's really bad.
I am trying to remain dignified and to "walk in grace", but it is really hard when someone knows you so incredibly intimately and so when they want to hurt you they know exactly what to say...
He actually isn't a bad person, but he's clearly too broken.
Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:45 PM
Jess - I am so so sorry for you, your children and your husband. he is clearly a broken man and needs to be by himself. Once things settle down, could you talk to him about this being a separation rather than a divorce?
his is just so sad. I am dovorced too, but we didnt have kids. We'd been together 10 years and there is just so much loss you feel as your identity is interconected with this other person.
All i can say is make sure you have support, take help when offered and look after yourself and your chidren
Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:51 PM
I am so sorry. In my experience the passive aggressive hostile thing comes from defensiveness. He probably already knows he is being an a@#e.
I was the one with cancer, and my partner left me twice: once during chemo and once a year later. Both times he did it really disrespectfully. He said the things he knew would hurt me most. Both times, he ended up coming back because it was the stress of other things, including my treatment, which had made him freak out. Like you I felt compassion for him and so I was able to understand, though it was so painful.
"Walking in grace" is such a good idea, though it is hard. After all, there are many years of shared parenting ahead of you, and who can really say what will happen between the 2 of you? Best to behave in the way most likely to be the way you are proud of in the long term. If he comes back, wonderful. If he does not, you will at least know you always behaved in a way which was conducive to him coming back.
but in the short term, I hope you have friends and family to lean on. Make sure you take care of yourself. If this phase of your life is ending, in time there will be a new phase, though right now that seems impossible and horrible to contemplate.
Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:51 PM
I am so sorry to hear this. Its not uncommon for men in particular to disconnect from families when they face terminal illness or the possibility of it. Can you speak to his family and let them know that you are concerned and would keep an eye on him. I would be worried about his state of mind.
Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:04 PM
After I was diagnosed with cancer at 27'and had to have a hysterectomy I was devastated.
I was more devastated for my DS who was 2 at the time and that I would never be able to give him a sibling, or give my DH a second child.
I went through a very bad period aboutn2 years post cancer and tried my hardest to push my DH away and to make him leave me.
I thought if I did so he would be able to move on, take DS with him and start a new family, give DS siblings with someone else.
It was a very bad time for all of us.
It took a lot of soul searching and therapy to come out the other side and realise me being here and being alive was much more important to m y DH and DS than ever having another sibling and child.
I'm sorry this is happening to you, but from the other side of the fence I just wanted to share a snip of my story.
Posted 09 January 2013 - 12:12 PM
I am so sorry this is happening to you both.
Please listen to Saxa and the others.
There is a lot of soul searching and trying to decide what you want from life when you face a thing like cancer. People also, as saxa said, also will often push those they love away, like a sick dog who will want to be alone to die, people often do the same thing - even if not dying
As Mrs_Mumma said, can you speak to his family? What sort of relationship do you have with them.
All the best
Posted 11 January 2013 - 06:19 PM
Thank you all for the replies.
He is leaving early Feb. It's a nightmare. The other night i had a dream none of this was happening, but that i found out he was having an affair, when i woke up i was momentarily relieved it was only a dream but then it dawned on me that he is leaving and i realized reality is worse than my nightmares...
I don't have a real relationship with his family - it seems he hasnt even told them he is moving out. I will contact his Mum when he has told her and i will talk to her, but as a family they exist very deeply in denial about everything.
I am concerned about him, about his mental health. His reality is unrecognizable to me, to our shared reality up until very recently, even to our couples therapist.
However he is being pretty hurtful a lot of the time, so it's getting harder to be graceful! I am trying to be detached and remind myself that this isn't all of who he is, but i cannot see the man i know right now.
This is a pain i have never known, but i am doing the best i can. I miss him, because he is like a different person. I want to find a way to maintain a relationship, whatever that looks like, even if it is just friendship but he is making it very hard. I dont want to be uncaring but he is deliberately hurting me. I guess there comes a point where you have to protect yourself too. I am starting to feel angry which may be something i have to go through but i really dont want there because it brings out the worst in me.
Worse still my best friend has just found out her husband has cancer ffs
thanks again for the replies and insight.
Posted 11 January 2013 - 06:29 PM
I'm so sorry OP
I can't even imagine how hard this must be for you. I hope his head clears eventually and his reality begins to match with yours.
Posted 14 January 2013 - 08:10 PM
I hope his head clears eventually and his reality begins to match with yours.
Sorry but this has hit a nerve.
Have you ever had cancer SCARFACE CLAW?
Its not jaut a matter of having a clear head.
I appreciate it is very hard for partners but no one unless you have been through it can even imagine what goes on in the heads of people who have had it.
0 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users
Women shoulder the time-intensive and routine tasks - and they're also more likely to do the least enjoyable tasks like scrubbing the toilets versus washing the car.
Does giving children food as a reward turn them into emotional eaters?
Two photos of mums have shown the world the physical impact of exhaustion in all its frazzled glory.
Pregnancy announcement videos have become so popular they're becoming businesses all their own, with YouTube compilations, Pinterest pages and morning television segments.
It's an idea that makes some people feel excited, while others shudder at the increased difficulty.
A terrifying car crash that left Danni Bett lying in hospital in a neck-brace wasn't enough to stop her from breastfeeding.
A Welsh couple have realised their newborn has a striking resemblance to a certain celebrity chef.
An adorable toddler and his toy truck in a photo series that'll melt your heart.
I want my children to grow up and know it's okay to feel strong emotion and to display it. Vulnerability and imperfection do not equal weakness.
For your own husband's parents not to come to your wedding is an utter embarrassment.
A teenage boy has undergone surgery to remove a foetus, complete with hair, legs, hands and genitals, removed from his stomach.
Even one-year-olds can be very exploratory, experimental and creative.
The short and long term consequences of controlled crying are under the spotlight with new Australian research suggesting no harm results from the practice.
If the tooth fairy takes teeth away, it must be something like a goblin who brings them in the first place.
Three-year-old Henry died in February this year, just a few hours after falling ill.
A Saudi man has been arrested after shooting the male obstetrician who delievered his baby because he was unhappy the doctor had seen his wife naked.
First, baby Zyla tried her trick on cushy, beige carpet.
How often have you been told "Just give your breastfed baby a bottle of formula at bedtime to make him sleep"? But does it work?
She might be a Hollywood superstar, but the gorgeous Anne Hathaway feels just as self-conscious as other new mums trying to get back in shape after having a baby.
In a moving 3000-word Facebook post, Dan Majesky has shared a painful journey of infertility, with a big surprise at the end.
Facebook has come under fire after banning an ad featuring Tess Holliday, a plus-sized model, wearing a bikini.
It was a moment filled with joy but tinged with sadness.
Bethani Webb was excited to find out she was pregnant, but the first time mum did not realise she was carrying four babies not one.
A Sydney cafe is offering breastfeeding mums free cups of tea in a bid to show support for the right of women to nurse their babies wherever they choose.
Jamie Oliver, who considered a vasectomy, is to be a father again. A fellow dad reflects on his own decision 11 years ago
To everyone's surprise, Kristen Miller "kept doing better each day", keeping her second baby safe.
Before my son was born I was given a lovely baby book full of blank pages waiting to be filled with weights and heights and first words.
There is no doubt seeing their child smile for the first time is an unforgettable moment for parents everywhere.
When Alison Johnson put her 18-month-old Caleb down for a nap, she had no reason to believe her son was in any danger.
All my panic and tears aside, my biggest question looking back is about the kind of security measures used in the maternity ward.
Everyone who visits a mum in hospital in the days following childbirth wants to get a photo with the new baby.
Finally, there's a way to keep warm while breastfeeding through winter.
What to do with this information? My advice would be to try not to think about it during the throes of passion.
From niplash to tight boobs, biting to milk supply issues, Pinky McKay looks at common breastfeeding issues and how to solve them.
Six months on we're all still alive, and the more we get to know each other the easier the days become.
Kirsty Carrington thought nothing of giving her newborn son a kiss, little did she know it would leave the baby fighting for life.
After children, 'me time' looks a little different.
A stroller can make or break travelling with a baby or toddler. Here are 15 great single travel stroller options.
It always pays to remind yourself of how terrific toddlers can be - they're little like this for such a short time
Take a trip down memory lane with these vinage and retro toys that you may have had in your childhood or your parent's childhood.