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How to deal with being abandoned

Community Member

My husband moved out 4 months ago but it t was only supposed to be for a few days to clear his head. He said he felt the world closing in on him. He said he was getting angry quickly & then felt guilty about his reaction. For 2 weeks he stayed in touch & said we'd be fine but over the next 4 weeks his contact stopped. No calls, no visits, no messages, nothing. I tried to see him before he caught the bus but when I did he was always moody. Then I got a text saying he was giving up (which meant our marriage) because he was better on his own. Just like that. No effort, no discussion, nothing. It ripped my heart out.

I sent him emails & texts begging to come home, to talk, telling him I'd support him through whatever he was going through - nothing. After 10 weeks I asked him what did he want me to do with his things. He said to put them in one place & he'd get them. He also said he appreciated the words & sentiments but kept contact sparse until he felt comfortable being himself.

Last week he came & got all his things, said he wasn't coming back, was happier & better on his own & it was too late to fix our marriage because he felt nothing. I have suspected all along that he might be suffering depression but never did I think this would happen. Never.

During the first 2 weeks I bought tickets to a concert he wanted to see. I made sure he still got one (which turned out to be the day before he got his things) & was encouraged because it only took him 30 mins to pick it up after my text. I hoped he would go. However last night he didn't show & it hit me like a ton of bricks. He doesn't want anything to do with me. This man I love has basically abandoned me & I am at a loss as to why his feelings went from love to nothing in only 4 months.

I sent a message to one of his work mates yesterday asking him to keep an eye on him & if he agreed with me about depression to point him the direction of getting help. I also want to help him but he's physically & emotionally unavailable to me.

I  want to know why does someone push their loved ones away, shut them out so completely & end all contact? Do they ever return? How do I deal with the pain without blaming him when it might be depression & outside his control? Do I keep trying to make contact or leave him alone? Am I just trying to justify the end of my marriage by 'diagnosing' it as depression because I have nothing else to go on? 

I need answers because I am at a loss & feel helpless.

47 Replies 47

Community Member


Thank you for the advice, and yes feeling abandoned is a horrible way to feel. The uncertaintly leaves a person with too many thoughts of 'why' and 'if only'; none of which can be answered.

Community Member


I'm not sure how long he was married but I do know his divorce was in 2005. I am led to believe that it was his wife who ended the marriage because she didn't like the military lifestyle. I believe at some stage he also had another relationship (maybe engagement) end due to (ironically) her infidelity. But with what I know now I wonder how much he has told me about these is real.

I'm trying to move forward but because this whole thing has been going for over 4 months & has seen me go from hope to despair to uncertaintly to hope etc it has made me very emotional and at times I'll be at work and just start crying. Thankfully, I have very good workmates/friends/family who let me talk through this whenever I need to but I like to come here because it's nice to talk to 'strangers' who may be able to relate better due to similar experiences.

White Rose/Mary,

Any reply is better than none and I am grateful just to have an ear because the more I can get out, the less I keep in which means I can move forward maybe a little quicker. It might also mean that someone opens my eyes to something I can't see.

I know he hasn't been/wasn't the perfect husband throughout our marriage but the thought of him having no part in my life scares me and I guess only time will tell if he will wake up one day and realise what he's done. I know that when/if that happens, unlike him, I won't just shut him out and write it off as if it meant nothing.


Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Really glad that you've found us Melly. It makes a difference to us to just be able to listen and know that someone feels able to express their feelings and be heard.



Hello Melly

It seems I have a gift for saying hard things to you and I do apologize for upsetting you in any way. I think it is because my husband was quite manipulative and anything that went wrong was my fault. True he did not go away at any time, but then he had no need to do this. I was always compliant. So to some extent your post reminded me of that time and probably pressed the wrong buttons. Still, that is no excuse for being unkind in any way.

You are hurt and confused because it seems incomprehensible that anyone could act in that manner. But even so the thought of not having him around scares you. Yes, I know that feeling and it took me 30 years to escape. And when I did I fell into the black pit called depression because it was not good living with him and not good living without him. But I survived and made a new life for myself.

Yes it was intolerable at times and I was lonely and frightened. You have had a shorter exposure to abuse so in theory should recover more quickly. But that's not the point is it. This really is the time to decide if you are going to cut your losses or wait for him to return and accept his way of life. It's a hard choice and you need as much support as possible even to make that decision. And whatever you decide, you will still need support.

One thing I suggest regardless of what you do. Go and see a family lawyer and be fully informed of your rights to your home, contents and bank account. This is important.

Take care of yourself.


Community Member

Hi Melly.  When you start questioning everything your partner/spouse tells you, it's time to 'stand back' and look objectively at the relationship (such as it is) and look at what you're gaining and losing.  He keeps 'disappearing' and giving you different reasons/excuses for his erratic behaviour.  Is there somebody else that he's seeing?  Everything Mary is saying is what I'd say.  You have to protect yourself.  I'm worried he's involved in something illegal, if he is, you're going to need some help.  A friend of mine found out (the hard way) that her husband was having an affair.  He was also embezzling funds from a non - existent business.  She thought he and a friend were involved in making and selling fly/insect screens to people via internet.  They would advertise these screens, people rang for quotes, they would send a 'rep' round to measure the window where the screen would go, then demand half the amount.  The customer paid whatever the quote, the 'rep' and everyone concerned (there were quite a few), would split the money, then run.  It took police years to catch them.  My friend's husband is in hospital, dying from cancer, he's under house arrest, not expected to live.  My friend divorced him quite a long time ago, but she paid for their wedding, him to venture into this non - existent business, she believed in him.  All I'm saying is, please be careful.  I'm not saying your husband is doing anything illegal, but when you hear some of these stories, it makes your hair curl. 

Only you know how you feel, deep down inside you're the only one who can decide what you want.

Best of luck whatever you decide to do.  BB is here for you.

White Rose/Mary,

I am sorry that my situation has brought up memories of your own.

Sadly, looking on the internet it appears there is actually something called 'Wife Abondonment Syndrome' that seems to occur more than we'd like to think so I could be just another statistic. I think the world we live in has made it too easy for people just to give in, run away when things get tough or 'trade up' with no regard for those they hurt & leave behind.

Don't apologise for being honest & truthful as I have taken no offence to anything you have said. You have done nothing but give me advice to help & there's no good glossing over the situation because that would give me false hope (& I have a gift of doing that on my own). As upset as I might be at this time because of what he has done, I don't hold anyone else responsible for the harsh reality/situation I have been forced to face. This is all on my husband & whatever he may be dealing with.

I thank you & everyone else for the support & kind words.




Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Melly,

You're never just another statistic in here. We're all amazingly different individuals with a different story to tell, but the commonality is we can relate to each others pain.

I get the feeling you've been doing a lot of soul searching from the tone of your last post and you've also made peace with some of the questions you had. I hope that's the case - you certainly have a good outlook on the whole situation.

Drop in again and keep us updated on how you're going.


Community Member


Yesterday I caught up with a friend that I haven't seen in a number of years so we went to the local pub for a couple of drinks & a meal. I took into acount that my husband would still be at work so there was no risk of me running into him. How wrong I was.

As soon as we entered I saw him & I'm pretty sure he saw me. Here he was, at the pub, standing at the bar talking to friends. My heart dropped & I'm sure I turned white (or at least that's what it felt like), but I managed to walk past him to a table & made sure I put my back to him because I didn't want to look at him like a desperate love sick puppy & have him see that.

However curiosity got the better of me & I asked my friend if my husband had even glimpsed at me &  she said he had looked in my direction but now he was gone.

That was only the third time in 4 months I have seen him (one of those was when he came & got all his things & the other was a similar accidental run in at a bank).

It was a bitter-sweet moment for me because he may have shown interest in why I was there (I don't go to the pub very often) but more importantly after only about 10 minutes he had been the one to leave. Don't get me wrong, I still love him very much. But is it wrong that I hope he left because he may have felt uncomfortable or guilty at seeing me after the way he has treated me? Is it wrong that I felt a little satisfaction thinking that?

Yes, as small as it may have been, it was bitter-sweet for me ..........



Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hey Melly - Thanks for the update.

You've got some guts! Nice job in not running away and staying at the pub.

I think at this time, thinking whatever you think is OK. Just like feeling whatever you feel is OK. It's a bit of a mixed up time and that you were the one to stay and evidently he left is completely fine. To have that bittersweet moment and feel a bit proud after the way he treated you? Where's the problem in that!

Keep the grief resources in mind Melly - if the rollercoaster starts to get a bit too much, have another read.

Thanks heaps for giving us an update - awesome to hear you're getting out and about and not letting your ex husband dampen your resolve!

Paul xx