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  • FIRST POST
    • Westminster
    • By Westminster 7th Oct 17, 4:46 PM
    • 812Posts
    • 497Thanks
    Westminster
    Considering separation from Disabled partner
    • #1
    • 7th Oct 17, 4:46 PM
    Considering separation from Disabled partner 7th Oct 17 at 4:46 PM
    Hi all

    Forgive me if this reads liked jumbled ramblings but this is my thought process so far.

    Background
    We have been married for 12 years.
    We own a mortgaged property together - it’s in both our names but I don’t recall (without digging out the paperwork) whether it’s joint tenancy or tenants in common.

    Draft letter to my wife
    I have been drafting some text to put in a letter to my wife as I expect it all to get very emotionally charged very quickly and I want to make sure I get everything across even if it’s much later that she reads it:

    Firstly I realise that while it is very difficult for me to say these things, it will likely be very significantly harder for you to hear them and for that I apologise. What follows is a rather rambling selection of my thoughts and decision making process over this difficult situation.

    I have been unhappy in our relationship for quite some time although have made several attempts to force myself to change my feelings / views but I have been unable to do so.

    I am finding the physical and emotional demands of helping you meet your daily needs too difficult and it is making me very depressed. However I am not ‘blaming’ you for this - I just feel that we have grown apart in the same way many ‘normal’ couples would, we just have an extra dynamic. In all honesty, if it were not for your MS, I would probably have left several years ago so I really have tried hard to make this work.

    While I still have affection for you and do care what happens to you moving forward, I have not felt love for a long time and have felt somewhat trapped by our situation and your condition as I would otherwise have probably done something about this a few years ago.

    I know you have been sad for some time (possibly also depressed?) but have avoided trying to confront it as I didn’t want all this to come out before I had got your situation as ‘ready’ as possible for my departure. To this end, I have been trying where possible to put on a ‘front’ to keep things together due to the above.

    Perhaps you are wondering if there is anyone else in my life - I can 100% percent say that there is nobody else and never has been anyone else. I haven’t as much as held someone else’s hand and I have no interest in finding anyone else at this time.

    The boys are the most important thing to me and to help secure their future I intend to do what I can to keep my flying career so that I can continue to provide you all with a secure home. I hope their sunny disposition can help you through this and will always be on hand to help as and when I can.

    I want to be very clear that I would love to have the boys living with me but its impractical with my work schedule and very unfair for you.

    I hope we can maintain shared custody so that some of the time when I am home (and when convenient to you) the boys could live with me for some of the time.

    I hope that we can keep a good relationship / communication going forward and while I fully expect this news to be extremely difficult, I also think you would very much prefer to keep the boys living with you and I am happy for them to do that and hope we can arrange an informal access program to fit in with my work etc. I intend to rent a property nearby so that I can help out with them as much as possible and so that we can share access / custody of the boys - particularly during the school holidays.

    I hope that once the initial dust has settled, we will be able to share the parenting decisions as much as is possible.

    Obviously the cats were a gift and I am happy for you to keep them. In fact there is very little I would want to take with me apart from those few items I would naturally see as ‘mine’ which would be laptop / server, my car etc. Everything else is up for discussion and I’m happy to leave you with pretty much everything else as you choose. While you may not want me back inside the house, if you do need any help with internet etc them I am happy to offer assistance. I will try to get as much as possible about the household accounts all together so there isn’t much you need to do.

    I’m taking my time over this process before I tell you as I want to make sure your situation is as stable as possible before I leave. I am hopeful that after the initial sense of loss from having to start using aids etc, that you ultimately feel better as your agency staff will be here solely for your needs so you won’t ever feel like you are ‘disturbing’ someone else when you need something.

    I haven’t yet had any professional advice on how the house / finances should be split but will probably do so before I tell you. My aim is to try to maintain the status-quo as much as possible. We don’t have any debts apart from the mortgage and I realise you won’t be able to buy me out of my part of the house so probably I will see if there is a way for me to keep my name / share in the property while you all continue to live there. I will then seek professional advice on what level of financial provision I will be required - but my intention is to fully meet my commitments.
    Last edited by Westminster; 07-10-2017 at 4:54 PM.
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Page 9
    • pearl123
    • By pearl123 11th Oct 17, 2:14 PM
    • 1,191 Posts
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    pearl123
    There is a huge difference between walking out on a mother/partner with young children and walking out on a disabled mother/partner with children.

    The children no matter how young will learn to anticipate their mothers needs and this will become more acute if the father leaves.

    The children are highly likely to suffer long term psychological damage. (I absolutely agree with the earlier poster who stated this.)
    I feel I can make this statement, as I was a parentified child to a needy/disabled mother.

    It might be a good idea if OP saw a psychiatrist not necessarily for himself but for one to spell out the potential dangers to his children.

    I recognise that is a great burden for OP, but how difficult is it to stick around 10-12 or more years for the sake of your childrens mental health. It's not that long, especially for someone who can escape to work!
    In life you can't run away from everything. Ok OP has stated that he'll pay financially. His wife and children will pay mentally, should he leave.

    Perhaps, one of the dedicated carer forums can offer some solutions/feedback. Carers.uk. for example. They'll know more about the help which is available.
    Last edited by pearl123; 11-10-2017 at 2:22 PM.
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 11th Oct 17, 4:10 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    It appears to be all about you.
    Those little children didn't ask to be bought into this world.
    Originally posted by takethemon
    Ahem....we still dont know whether it was a mutual decision to have those children or just one made by the wife.

    If it was her decision alone - its her responsibility.

    It's low tactics to try guilt-tripping OP.
    #MeToo
    • annandale
    • By annandale 11th Oct 17, 4:51 PM
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    annandale
    Are you seriously trying to suggest if this man didn't want kids that he has zero responsibility towards his kids?

    And ahem. If he really didn't want kids he could have had a vasectomy. Particularly after child number one came along if he really didn't want another.

    It's appalling that anyone could suggest that he should have no responsibility towards his kids if he didn't want them.

    He is their father for God's sake. They have a relationship with him.
    • FBaby
    • By FBaby 11th Oct 17, 6:17 PM
    • 15,943 Posts
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    FBaby
    I don't think OP has said anywhere that he didn't want his kids let alone that he didn't want to have any responsibility for them!
    • Judi
    • By Judi 11th Oct 17, 6:31 PM
    • 15,180 Posts
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    Judi
    If it was her decision alone - its her responsibility.
    No its not.
    'Holy crap on a cracker!'
    • -taff
    • By -taff 11th Oct 17, 6:35 PM
    • 7,446 Posts
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    -taff
    BIB - still not considering things from your wife's POV?.
    Originally posted by spirit
    Yes, because every time I've ended a relationship, I went to them immediately I had the first thought about it. They obviously then discussed it in a calm and ratiional manner and we came to a mutual decision without any anger or anything like that.

    Yes. I'm being sarcastic.

    Honestly OP, once you've made the decision the leave, nothing much is going to make you stay no matter how many times you try to be a 'better' person.
    The love is gone, the love is gone. I know no-one and have personal experience of it never rekindling no matter steps have been taken.


    Although you will have to dicuss it sooner or later.
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 11th Oct 17, 6:54 PM
    • 18,041 Posts
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    Pollycat
    Although you will have to dicuss it sooner or later.
    Originally posted by -taff
    And given what the OP said in the extracts from his first post below - the sooner the better.

    I have been unhappy in our relationship for quite some time although have made several attempts to force myself to change my feelings / views but I have been unable to do so.

    I am finding the physical and emotional demands of helping you meet your daily needs too difficult and it is making me very depressed. However I am not ‘blaming’ you for this - I just feel that we have grown apart in the same way many ‘normal’ couples would, we just have an extra dynamic. In all honesty, if it were not for your MS, I would probably have left several years ago so I really have tried hard to make this work.

    While I still have affection for you and do care what happens to you moving forward, I have not felt love for a long time and have felt somewhat trapped by our situation and your condition as I would otherwise have probably done something about this a few years ago.
    Originally posted by Westminster
    No amount of soul-searching or back-tracking is going to change how the OP feels.
    • pipkin71
    • By pipkin71 11th Oct 17, 6:55 PM
    • 18,888 Posts
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    pipkin71
    The children are highly likely to suffer long term psychological damage. (I absolutely agree with the earlier poster who stated this.)
    I feel I can make this statement, as I was a parentified child to a needy/disabled mother.
    Originally posted by pearl123
    I am the mother of two children, who have taken on a caring responsibility from a young age, due to my disabilities. Neither of them are psychologically damaged adults.

    Being a young carer is a difficult job, granted but that does not automatically mean that every young carer is highly likely to be affected psychologically.
    There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they'll take you - Beatrix Potter
    • pearl123
    • By pearl123 11th Oct 17, 7:22 PM
    • 1,191 Posts
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    pearl123
    I am the mother of two children, who have taken on a caring responsibility from a young age, due to my disabilities. Neither of them are psychologically damaged adults.

    Being a young carer is a difficult job, granted but that does not automatically mean that every young carer is highly likely to be affected psychologically.
    Originally posted by pipkin71
    Have you ever asked them if they resented the fact that they became a carer?

    It would be fair to say that children accept the roles that they are given.
    Last edited by pearl123; 11-10-2017 at 7:38 PM.
    • pipkin71
    • By pipkin71 11th Oct 17, 7:54 PM
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    pipkin71
    Have you ever asked them if they resented the fact that they became a carer?

    It would be fair to say that children accept the roles that they are given.
    Originally posted by pearl123
    We've discussed it a few times and had a discussion today, based on this thread. Neither of them resent the fact, although we all agreed it would have been much better if they had never been in that position.

    The most difficult times for them, were during my hospital stays. They found that harder to deal with than me being at home.

    I would add, that they had a lot of support from outside agencies, and maybe that made a difference to how they felt about being young carers. Perhaps it is harder, if there is no outside support and the children are isolated.
    There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they'll take you - Beatrix Potter
    • Red-Squirrel
    • By Red-Squirrel 11th Oct 17, 9:24 PM
    • 1,748 Posts
    • 4,730 Thanks
    Red-Squirrel
    I am the mother of two children, who have taken on a caring responsibility from a young age, due to my disabilities. Neither of them are psychologically damaged adults.

    Being a young carer is a difficult job, granted but that does not automatically mean that every young carer is highly likely to be affected psychologically.
    Originally posted by pipkin71
    Psychologically damaged is a bit strong and sounds very accusatory, but I think it would be fair to say that children who are young carers for their parents are definitely affected by it. It does have an impact and they do have a different experience of childhood and growing up and family life than children who don't have caring responsibilities.

    Especially when the disabled parent is the only parent who is around all the time, and one is absent a lot as will be the case with these children.
    • pipkin71
    • By pipkin71 11th Oct 17, 9:41 PM
    • 18,888 Posts
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    pipkin71
    Psychologically damaged is a bit strong and sounds very accusatory, but I think it would be fair to say that children who are young carers for their parents are definitely affected by it. It does have an impact and they do have a different experience of childhood and growing up and family life than children who don't have caring responsibilities.

    Especially when the disabled parent is the only parent who is around all the time, and one is absent a lot as will be the case with these children.
    Originally posted by Red-Squirrel
    I can understand that and would suggest that all sorts of family dynamics can affect children growing up; divorce, drug dependency; domestic violence; parents who work all hours; parents who don't; poverty; second families; the list, I'm sure, is a long one.

    We are a single parent household and growing up without their dad around, had an impact on my children. They see me being ill, as a normal part of their lives and while their lives were different to some of their friends, it was normal to them.

    I would never say it was ideal; we all would have obviously preferred it if I wasn't ill, but they haven't been psychologically damaged by it, which is the terminology I objected to.
    There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they'll take you - Beatrix Potter
    • Plush
    • By Plush 11th Oct 17, 10:23 PM
    • 23 Posts
    • 76 Thanks
    Plush
    This is one of the saddest stories I've read in a long time. I don't think the letter is cold-hearted... no matter how you write such letter it will hurt the other person.

    Don't want to comment much, a lot has been already said... just wanted to say that, if I were in a situation like OP's wife is now, I would strongly consider asking him to separate. I wouldn't want to be such a burden on someone I love, for the rest of my/his life. I believe that would be too selfish of me. If he decided to stay, good - but I would at least offer (especially knowing that he doesn't love me anymore). We are all different...

    Best of luck @Westminster
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 12th Oct 17, 6:58 AM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    I think that's an unusual viewpoint from what I can make out Plush.

    I thoroughly agree that I would only ever want a man to be with me because he loved me and wanted to be with me. I would find it pointless and hurtful to know a man was only remaining with me because he'd been pressurised into doing so by other people. How could I possibly be happy at knowing the person with me really didnt want to be with me?

    The way I see it is "duty" is a 19th century way of thinking. "Fair shares/everyone having a right to a say about their own life" is the 21st century way of thinking. But a lot of people are pushing the 19th century way of thinking because, somewhere along the line, it suits/they think it might suit them to have someone forced by "duty" to do what they want.

    "Duty" applies if one is in a responsible position - like the monarch or president of a country or the CEO of a firm. At a personal level - it's substantially a word that is now in the history books. If it were me in that position then I would have seen it as my duty/responsibility not to have children ever and sacrifice the idea of doing so (whichever of the two partners I was) - rather than take the risk of placing adult responsibility on child shoulders. That is my interpretation of where "duty" still applies in the 21st century.
    Last edited by moneyistooshorttomention; 12-10-2017 at 7:04 AM.
    #MeToo
    • BBH123
    • By BBH123 12th Oct 17, 8:54 AM
    • 457 Posts
    • 684 Thanks
    BBH123
    I think an added dimension for me is that the wife is so young at 35 to be completely reliant on others. I am assuminng and it's a great assumption that OP is not that much older.

    This age should be the prime of their lives, enjoying their young family and creating memories. Holidays, adventure, hobbies etc etc and two of you to working together to support, provide and nurture each other.

    I can't help but wonder that OP is grieving for what he is missing out on. He would have hoped and dreams of his own unfulfilled and he probably sees all his peers leading the life he lost and wants some of that for himself. And who could blame him.

    He is young enough to start again and ultimately meet someone who he can live those dreams with.

    Asking / expecting someone to be a carer at 35+ essentially giving up their life is a massive ask of anyone and especially if the love has gone.

    I would feel devasted for the wife because its not her fault she is in this situation buit I would understand OP if he had to leave.

    I have dipped in and out of this thread and I havent heard any references to potential grandparental help ?
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 12th Oct 17, 9:10 AM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    As far as I can see - carers are rarely asked to be carers. It's just assumed they will be and gradually they have to do a bit, then do a bit more, then do a bit more again and (at some point) daylight dawns on them that they've been made into a carer and they've never been asked if they would be one and not given a choice about what they are going to do with their own life. Someone else has decided it for them.

    35 or so is indeed a young age and OP does still have time to get the life they planned on having for themselves. But no-one else's life should just be "written off" as not mattering for an indefinite number of years either. Even retirement age people have probably been "counting the days" until they retire and making all sorts of plans for themselves.

    It is a very valid point to wonder where the grandparents are coming into this and any brothers or sisters that wanted to be uncles or aunts (rather than just finding that was what they were iyswim). Some people who don't have children of their own want children and would be very good with them.

    One thing we do know is that the wife already knew she had MS when she decided to have children - and so what arrangements did she have in mind about how the childcare was to be done at the time she decided to get pregnant with them? Did she make arrangements for those children - or did she just "assume" roles for other people that they hadnt volunteered for?
    #MeToo
    • Red-Squirrel
    • By Red-Squirrel 12th Oct 17, 9:33 AM
    • 1,748 Posts
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    Red-Squirrel
    I have dipped in and out of this thread and I havent heard any references to potential grandparental help ?
    Originally posted by BBH123
    You've missed them, you should read the OP's posts again and you'll find the info about siblings/parents.
    • BBH123
    • By BBH123 12th Oct 17, 9:34 AM
    • 457 Posts
    • 684 Thanks
    BBH123
    You make some very valid points, particularly the 'caring' insiduously creeping up on you until one day you realise it has moved on from a little incidental help to an all consuming full time role. I would imagine this ladies needs are great as I remember a sister and OP and carer all suffering depression , was that made worse by the stress of the care needs.

    The assumption would also be that there were conversations with family re any care needs if the health of wife deteriorated or perhaps they just hoped as she was young the illness would abate longer.

    I know for me if I was disabled or suffered an illness likely to get worse I absolutely would not have had children as I am vehmently against child carers. Children need a childhood not thrown into an adult world of unnessary burden, end of.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 12th Oct 17, 10:05 AM
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    seven-day-weekend
    I too would not have children under those circumstances, but the children are here now, so not much point discussing that.

    I don't think they should be made into child carers either.

    I also would not want my husband to stay just to be a carer, if he no longer loved me.

    However, I thought the OP and his wife already have arrangements for her care, which do not involve the children in other than incidental tasks?
    Last edited by seven-day-weekend; 12-10-2017 at 11:35 AM.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    St. Augustine — 'In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.'
    • annandale
    • By annandale 12th Oct 17, 11:27 AM
    • 883 Posts
    • 1,913 Thanks
    annandale
    The husband knew she had ms when they decided to have children. As I said above. If he didn't want these kids and the first child was unplanned steps could have been taken to prevent an unplanned pregnancy.

    I actually think it's disgusting that there's even been a suggestion that if they weren't planned the Op should have no responsibility for them at all and questions are being asked where are the grandparents or aunts or uncles.

    What do aunts or uncles have to do with this whether they have their own kids or not. Are they to end up being a substitute father because their father can wash their hands of them because the mother forced the father into having them?

    Which has been assumed on here with no evidence of the same by some people.

    Disabled people can and do have kids and irrespective of whether the Op wanted children he has them and they are very much his responsibility.

    There are people who have kids because contraception fails. Lots of kids aren't planned. It doesn't mean that the father swans off into the sunset.

    The op has said that he wants to be part of their life so why is it being suggested by one poster at least that he takes nothing more to do with them?

    The ops wife does not know how he feels. She's not a mind reader. How can she be expected to know and ask him for a separation because she's a burden?

    How lovely. What lovely terminology. Calling someone a burden because they have MS
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