Where to from here....
I have always ben a very stable person, grounded and mentally secure. I don't stress easily, and when an issues arises, it gets fixed or forwarded to someone to fix it.
In June 2017, my mum was diagnosed with Stage 3 fibrosis at the age of 67 of the liver from drinking to much. She was advised that if she stopped drinking, lost 5 kg's and ate a clean diet, she would be good for anther 20yrs. She passed in February 2018 as she hit the drink harder.
So, while i was trying to support my dad and help look after mum, i found out the day after fathers day in 2017 that my wife was having an affair with a man she works with. She continued this for another 6 months after the affair was exposed. I supported my wife through her families health issues 15 odd years earlier and was her rock. She told me that she couldnt be there for me during this time on multiple occasions. She moved out for 3 weeks, continued to see him while i ran the house and looked after our kids
Late April 2018, my wifes affair was knocked on the head by him as he was getting a job promotion.
Late April 2018, my grandmother passed away. She was old and had a good life, but it was dads mum, so double whack for him.
June 2018, my dad was admitted to hospital with a blood clot from ankle to groin. I was advised he would be dead in 4 minutes if it was to let go. after 6 weeks in hospital, he was released.
August 2018, my wife and i had another blow up about her actions, i went to move out but didnt.
September 2018, my son was admitted to the children mental health ward for suicidal thought and hearing voices.
December 2018, he was diagnosed with testicular cancer, with chemo following for the next 4 months to April 2019.
the remainder of 2019 was fairly event free.
2020, was ok except for my wife having her gall-bladder removed mid year and the fun that goes with that. Again, i supported her through that. Late 2020, our house and car where severely damaged in a large hail storm, which we had to relocate to while repairs were done.
We moved out for repair in May 2021. While we were moving out, my wife advised that she had pretty much left our marriage. For the next 2 months, she would take her rings off when going to work.
So, in July 2021, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. I was preparing to leave in June 2021 prior to the diagnosis, but now feel stuck while she undergoes treatment and reconstruction. But is is hard to stay focused and mentally strong while doing this...
Welcome to the Beyond Blue forums we are so glad that you have made you way here and had the bravery to post. We want you to know that this is a safe space to discuss your thoughts, feelings and experiences and receive honest responses and suggestions from fellow forum users.
We are so sorry to hear all that you have been expereincing lots of grief and loss and can understand your feeling lost on "what to do next". We would like to say you have done a great job so far managing everything and having such a strong mental state has helped you be there for everyone else. Please also remember to look after yourself, self care is important for wellbeing.
I’d like to join Sophie_M in welcoming you here to the forum.
I think you are exactly right -you are a strong and capable person, and have been able to endure and give support over the past few years during all the things that life has thrown at you. Under those circumstances as they continue even the strongest person can feel completely overwhelmed and without direction.
Thinking about what you have written it looks as if those matters can be divided into two parts, the illness of your dad and son, the hail damage and more are all things that could be regarded as horrible parts of life that just happen.
Incidentally I hope your dad and son are ok now.
Your wife seems a different matter. Here it looks like a case of somebody feeling they can do what they like with no consideration for you, and you will be there to pick up the pieces.
I know her illness has stopped you from leaving now and in the past, however this is very open ended.
If it was me her lack of care for me would affect how I felt about myself, I’d start to feel I had less worth. I would think that in turn could weaken a person to the extent they may not be able to continue the huge amounts of support such as you give. It would be very different if she was by your side and helped you.
You have remained with your wife for a year now, do you mind if I ask you why? It might seem a silly question given her diagnosis but I ask is because nobody is a bottomless well of strength all by themselves and maybe the reasoning needs to be at least looked at.
Sometimes one has to recognize one’s limits and take them into account. Frankly you sound at the end of your tether and that worries me. Maybe it is time to look at your options and what you can manage.
You have talked about the support you give others, and have not said if in fact there is any support for you. Can I ask if there is anyone, in your family or a friend, or else a professional, with whom you can discuss things in depth and maybe lean on?
I wonder if that makes sense- if not please sing out
Thanks for your reply. I must admit reading the all the different messages, i have a few tears starting to well up.
The big question, why am i still with my wife.......
I tend to ask myself that most days, but then i always go back to a promise i made myself when she was diagnosed. Although we are not on the same page, not even in the same book, and given that i was preparing to leave last year, I made a myself a promise that i would be there to support her though this phase until the journey was over. She is still the mother of our children and a human being and she still deserves some support. And i do still love her. That sounds crazy right.
Why, because i know that if i was to leave at that point of her being diagnosed, then i know our 3 children wouldn't understand as they don't know what has happened with her actions. They are 19, 17 and 13. i think they do know some of it, but how much im not sure. I believe they dont need to know the story. All i would be to them is the dad that walked out when mum got sick, when the going got hard.
Those whose opinions matter to me know part of the story, my family and hers. I have a couple of really goo mates that are a good sounding board.
I joke that i am God in my own home. Nobody knows i exist until somebody wants something. So yes the feelings of not being appreciated or taken for granted are generally always present.
I promised myself that i would put all plans to leave on hold until she was physically healed. She is expected to have reconstruction surgery in September or October. I know her mental health is not great, also her emotional well being. But i can't fix that for her. She needs to get help for that herself. Our sons psychologist has given her a number for someone to speak to that specialises in breast cancer counselling, but she hasn't done anything with it.
She is a very proud woman which i believe her pride gets in her way, both regards to seeking help and opening up to someone. She was put on medication for anti-natal depression after our first child, but stopped taking it as she deemed herself weak for needing the medication.
I know it is time to look after me, eat well, work out again, lose weight, but its easy to say at this point in time. I just need to get up and make it happen.
And i often say, "There is someone out there worse off than me" That keeps me sain as well.
Thanks for the posts everyone.
Yes, saw a psychologist a few years ago. I did a lot of of soul searching and reading before seeing him. Apparently i was at the point after our first meeting that he said usually takes him 6-7 weeks with other to get to, so that made me feel pretty good about my own mental state.
Thanks for your message.
So what’s happening to you're being tested, believe it or not it’s people like you who become real life heroes, it’s your mission and yours alone to evolve and use your pain to inspire others along with developing substance. You have rigger. You have grit. And although this seems tough, your growing spiritually and mentally. Pain and adversity are the best agents for growth, the issue is we have to look very hard for the blessings. If we don’t get ourselves right then others suffer as a result or stray away.
snd yes it seems you’ve attracted a lot of hardship, life is about getting our thinking and self talk right.
our thoughts create our feelings, and feelings drive our emotions. The goal is to find peace in ourselves.
you may want to read the book the untethered soul by Michael singer, along with the power of now by eckhart tolle, read them multiple times. Even if you don’t like reading it can change our thoughts.
se are never to old to start fresh, and you need a lot of time out to go through the grieving process along with nourishing your broken soul and going back inside to fix those broken parts. This is the best time to find who you are.
got to feed your self good messages and experiences. Got to change karma, learn to love yourself first. Move on. Start a fresh. It takes dramatic and radical action:
depression and anxiety are just story’s of what we tell ourselves, they are conditions. They are not who we truly are, they are messages of what has happened to us.
it’s very possible to achieve anything you dream of, but first we have to
unlock our potential. And learn how to operate our brain. Hope you read the books.
Thank you for answering my question so frankly, I think you have set out an excellent set of reasons you feel you ought to remain, particularly your kids' attitudes in the future.
OK, however it does not alter the fact you are stretched far too thin. I worry you might reach the stage where you simply could not go on so, perhaps this is something that worries you too.
I guess the next question might be given you continue all your responsibilities how can they be managed with less stress and effort on your part? You did mention your kids ranged in ages from 13 to 19 (with one seeing a psychologist - or did I misunderstand that part?).
Is there any way you can enlist them to help? I have been surprised at the amount of understanding and willingness some have, as well as which if they are worried at all themselves then having something they can do might help with that.
Is there one or more you can have an adult conversation with?
I'm very glad you have a couple of good mates, trying to deal with all this on oyur own is very hard and just talking - even making wry jokes - can be real tension-reliever.
OK, that's just one suggestion to help you ease the load - it may not be practical, do you have any ideas?