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20 year relationship with issues. Do I walk away and start again?

Community Member
Hi I'm new here. Recently my wife and I have had some issues. Some previous history my wife has had several affairs that I know of. The last one ended my career and several friendships. I suffer from PTSD anxiety and depression and have tried all kinds of medications, therapies etc. Some of this was caused by occupational stress but the affairs are 99% the main issue. Things were going ok for a few years but my intuition told me something was not quite right a couple of years ago. I became very suspicious and started to join the dots. I have used alcohol at night for along time to basically drink myself to sleep. My wife assured me nothing was happening it was just my anxiety playing up and i needed more therapy and medication. I believed her and had more therapy and gave more trust than I was comfortable with. It so happens I was right from the start and it really knocked my mental health for 6. We argued I became very suicidal at the time but eventually things settled down. Less than a year later she was back communicating with the same guy she agreed to have no contact with. I had enough and asked her to pack her bags and leave. And she did. After a short time my mental health was much better. I was living in the family home with our 2 kids and my wife was living on her own. After 3 months or so I asked her to move back in and to see if we could make it work and it did for a while. With the recent fires happening and some extra stress (trust issues) with the relationship I wasnt doing so well. I tried to express this to my wife but she kept playing the "im controlling card" anyway we had an argument watching tv in bed i got upset left the room went to the other end of the house kicked a backpack and a foot stool and left the house. Now I have an interim intervention order. I was upset, frustrated, distressed but i would not say i was angry. I am not a violent person. I get very upset and my safety is a big issue but never anyone elses. I am allowed to live at home but no drinking or domestic violence are the conditions. If I break this I will loose my current job and new careers im working towards the risk is to high. I have to move out but my wife is the bread winner and I cant afford too and i think the kids will come with me. My wife even said to me she had to move out last time and now I have to!?????????????????
6 Replies 6

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello Undecided Dad, it takes a great deal of courage to post your comment and we want to thank you for doing so.

Your intuition can make many judgements and once you have experienced them it only increases to the point where the trust has been broken and I'm really sorry you have been put in a situation like this.

If you stay at the house under these conditions then you will be questioning too many issues and that's not what would be the best for you, so can I suggest a couple of alternatives.

Anglicare is able to provide temporary accommodation in situations like this and secondly, Centrelink can provide bond money and a couple of weeks of rent, which you pay off slowly.

We'd like to hear how you feel about this and supporting you.


Community Member

Hello Undecided Dad

Your situation is easy to understand and I’m sure many people can identify with you. If your suffering from PTSD and anxiety & depression, it’s easy to see how you would feel trapped in your position. The point that stands out for me is the “....the affairs are 99% the main issue”. They would be for most people in your situation. I too have experienced infidelity and I know how it mucks up your mind so you lose your sense of self and confidence. I have never seen a marriage survive let alone thrive where one partner has deceived the spouse over a long period of time and repeatedly. Loss of trust in a marriage is poison and affects every action and conversation, subsequent to the deception.

If you have to move out, it doesn’t matter if both or only one spouse is the breadwinner. Arrangements should be made so that the children have a carer and if possible stay in the family home. Financial arrangements should be then made so that the spouse leaving the family home is also supported, if necessary. If you and your wife can’t agree or can’t afford these arrangements, an experienced family law solicitor should be consulted. What I’m trying to say is it’s not just the breadwinner that has the option of staying or leaving.

Stay strong, you will survive this episode and ultimately grow stronger.

Managed to get my X to move out! I'm living in the family home with kids now. Working as an enrolled nurse and driving an ambulance casually. Started full time University this year too. Struggling a bit but still going. Had to back off from some work commitments because I was starting to get stressed again. 18 months I should have a degree!

Hi Undecided Dad

Good on you!

I was so happy to read your last post. A truly amazing outcome and a testament to your courage and resilience.

I really hope you can take some time to reflect on how far you have come and celebrate your achievements.

Kind thoughts to you

Hello Undecided Dad, can I ask you a question, and please only answer if you want to, I'm sorry about how you are feeling, first of all, but I wonder whether the uni course is causing this extra stress and appreciate you will have a degree in 18 months, but you so much you are trying to cope with, just interested.

Best wishes.


Community Member

Hi there.

I really feel for you but after reading you story, you know that her issues are causing your family distress and he behaviour caused your mental health to decline. You need to fix that, not her and get yourself together as best you can. If you feel better that she goes, as in you stop enabling her (letting her get away with her behavior) as she thinks she can do what ever she wants. Once bad behaved people think like this, it usually cannot be altered without major repair, especially from the abused party (i.e. you and kids).

Please focus on you and look after yourself,. Know that you can terminate your relationship anytime you need to if she cannot learn to control her difficulties - move on and live better.