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Newest Member: Arcangel

Divorce/Separation :
I never wanted this

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 Kanashii (original poster new member #80132) posted at 12:21 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

Hello all. I had to make a new account some time ago as my WH started reading my posts (making me feel less secure getting help) and then tried to gaslight me saying "As long as you know everything you're writing isn't true!"...so keeping some things vagueish for now.

I never wanted a separation and I never thought I would be having to get in touch with a divorce attorney but things have come to a head. My WH keeps acting out and - instead of using what he learned in therapy- keeps reacting on impulses which lead to more poor decisions, which lead to more "guilt," which leads to more "I want to die" moments from him, etc.

A couple weeks ago after he performed more self harm on himself and I did not react the way he wanted (no pity, just fear and trying to figure out how/where he got the object to do it) he decided he needed to leave the house as talking to me supposedly makes him want to die. Pulled a whole spiel about how I needed to trust him (no one did) and that he would find a way to not want to die. He basically bounced from place to place for two weeks - barely telling the same story on what he was doing or where he was. It got to the point that he lied to me, a close family friend who was supposed to help keep him stable, and apparently to the OW about where he was. He told me he was one place, he told our family friend he was at home, and he told the OW that "oh yeah, wife and friend said it was OK for me to be here with you!" Our family friend found out where he was, told me, and is forcing him into help (inpatient something).

At this point with my WH doing everything he can to get OW attention - including some things that potentially put my/my son's safety at risk- I'm now having to contact a divorce attorney. I never wanted a divorce. I just wanted my best friend who I used to be able to trust with everything to come back. I don't know what it is about his obsession and infatuation with this OW that makes him throw away the family and life that we built but nothing seems to be getting through to him. Even pleas to do better for our son go ignored.

Sorry for the long rant. I never thought that we would ever be in this position as we were childhood sweethearts and knew everything about each other. Forcing the legal separation that can lead to divorce seems like the only way I can protect my child from the idiocy that my husband keeps acting on. Where we are you have to be separated and living in different places for over a year to be able to divorce. In home separation wouldn't count. Also, I'm trying to establish a good routine/schedule with family and friends for my young son to make him feel secure despite his father suddenly "going poof." Hopefully being around more extended family that love him will help...

Me - BW Mid 30's
Him - WH Mid 30's

D-day1: Christmas Night 2021
D-day2:6/5/22
Separated.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022   ·   location: United States
id 8738997
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Forks027 ( member #59996) posted at 3:53 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

Unfortunately, you can’t nice him back. You can’t make him do anything as long as he’s unwilling. You may not want a divorce, but at this point, it’s imperative to protect yourself and your kid now.

It’s hard but the person he is and chooses to be now is vastly different from the sweetheart you know from childhood. This new person is willing to throw his family under the bus, gaslight you, and even lie to the one he’s apparently obsessed with duh

I don’t want to be an armchair psychologist, but does he have some kind of mental illness? It could explain some of the mania he seems to be displaying, but I don’t want to create false hope on that. If he keeps refusing help, then there’s nothing more you can do. Wishing you strength as you navigate this mess.

[This message edited by Forks027 at 3:56 PM, Tuesday, June 7th]

posts: 404   ·   registered: Aug. 4th, 2017
id 8739019
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 Kanashii (original poster new member #80132) posted at 4:23 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

He does. He's been seeing a few therapists off and on for "anxiety and depression." Somewhere along the way he's decided he knows more and knows better than everyone else (including the therapists) and has insisted on doing things the way he wants to do them. When his anxiety and depression got worse he latched onto the OW as she made him "feel better" and "she understood him." They both have the same issues and are basically an echo chamber for their holier than thou attitude towards everyone else. It's his diagnosis and everything he's doing with it that's made me lose hope now. He knows the problem, he knows what he needs to do. He keeps doing the total opposite, not taking responsibility for anything he's doing, and running off to get his next ego kibble from the OW. He even says all the right things like "I won't be going to OW's place because I know what connotation that brings," among many other dangerous lies that came out two nights ago/yesterday morning.

So yes, you're right that I need to protect myself/my son and that's what I've been doing the past 24 hours. Mutual friends and extended family now know everything and are stepping up to help. WH used to have meltdowns and blame/be angry at me whenever anyone else would learn about his affair (even by accident), so I'm glad that he's been informed while stuck in the hospital somewhere about everyone knowing what he did/why he did and the impending separation/divorce.

Friends have given me good information for a divorce lawyer. I've got therapy for myself all lined up so I have a place to dump and get clarity. I just wish that some of that righteous anger I get to feel on occasion would stay around more. The crushing sadness is awful.

Me - BW Mid 30's
Him - WH Mid 30's

D-day1: Christmas Night 2021
D-day2:6/5/22
Separated.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022   ·   location: United States
id 8739026
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ChamomileTea ( Guide #53574) posted at 4:53 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

Forcing the legal separation that can lead to divorce seems like the only way I can protect my child from the idiocy that my husband keeps acting on.

That's the most important thing. You're simply doing what you have to do. Your STBX can't have it both ways. Either he's mentally ill and suicidal, in which case he shouldn't be around your kid, or he's manipulating you. Right now, twisted as he is, he's got the same parenting rights you have. Filing will help you get him scaled back to supervised visitation so you will know where your kid is and that someone who is rational is watching out for him.

BW: 2004(online EAs),
2014 (multiple PAs)
Married 38 years;
in R with fWH for 7

No one can make you into a liar but you.

posts: 5637   ·   registered: Jun. 8th, 2016   ·   location: U.S.
id 8739033
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BearlyBreathing ( member #55075) posted at 4:58 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

You are doing the right thing to protect you and your kids. And none of us wanted D, but often it is the best choice from a bunch of crappy options.

Your WH sounds far more unstable than anxiety and depression. He needs serious medical help and it will not be resolved quickly.

Get you and your kids safe.

You will be okay- you are stronger than you know.

Hang in there, and keep moving toward the legal S.

(((Hugs)))

Me: BS 55 (49 on d-day)Him: WH. 64. D-Day 8/15/2016 LTA. Kinda liking my new life :-)

**horrible typist, lots of edits to correct. :-/ **

posts: 4788   ·   registered: Sep. 10th, 2016   ·   location: Northern CA
id 8739036
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 Kanashii (original poster new member #80132) posted at 5:06 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

Filing will help you get him scaled back to supervised visitation so you will know where your kid is and that someone who is rational is watching out for him


That...is a very good point. With everything he's done and currently doing I do not trust him with our son by himself. None of us really trust him with his own safety by himself.

Is there anything I need to know going in to speak to the divorce lawyer? I'm obviously new to this and have no idea what info they will need in the meetings. I have been stay at home parenting our child since the day he was born, and had to curtail any side jobs I had during the pandemic shenanigans to keep my child safe while my husband "worked" more and more hours. To anyone wondering, WH's OW is a coworker. So that adds more salt to the wounds.

Me - BW Mid 30's
Him - WH Mid 30's

D-day1: Christmas Night 2021
D-day2:6/5/22
Separated.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022   ·   location: United States
id 8739038
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ChamomileTea ( Guide #53574) posted at 8:55 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

Your best bet is to round up as much of your important papers as you can, marriage/birth certificates, financial statement, bills, documentation regarding assets, and if possible, any medical evidence of instability that you might have. If you're filing on grounds (and most people don't), you would need proof of the adultery. The attorney will let you know what else you need.

I know it sucks, but the gravitas of court orders can be your most important tool when dealing with a selfish and recalcitrant WS.

((hugs))

[This message edited by ChamomileTea at 8:55 PM, Tuesday, June 7th]

BW: 2004(online EAs),
2014 (multiple PAs)
Married 38 years;
in R with fWH for 7

No one can make you into a liar but you.

posts: 5637   ·   registered: Jun. 8th, 2016   ·   location: U.S.
id 8739080
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 11:12 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

A couple weeks ago after he performed more self harm on himself and I did not react the way he wanted (no pity, just fear and trying to figure out how/where he got the object to do it) he decided he needed to leave the house as talking to me supposedly makes him want to die.

The self-harm was classic, obvious manipulation in this case. It was done for effect, and when he didn't get the response he wanted, he left. Typical.

Our family friend found out where he was, told me, and is forcing him into help (inpatient something).

Good. That's what you should do the next time he threatens suicide or does self-harm in front of you.

I never wanted a divorce. I just wanted my best friend who I used to be able to trust with everything to come back.

He's had multiple affairs since at least 2004, that's for the past 18 years, so he's definitely not trustworthy.

WH doing everything he can to get OW attention - including some things that potentially put my/my son's safety at risk

Keep doing everything you can to keep your son safe, and document what your WS is doing that's unsafe. This is important for the custody case later on. You don't want WS to have unmonitored custody of your son- he's too unstable.

posts: 348   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8739100
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BoundaryBuilder ( member #78439) posted at 11:27 PM on Tuesday, June 7th, 2022

Hello Kanashii. What a nightmare you're navigating. But you're handling it well! Legal separation/divorce is the right thing to do - to protect you and your son. It's also a hard thing to do. Divorcing your childhood sweetheart/husband will be a terrible emotional rollercoaster ride you didn't choose. Please know that feeling "crushing sadness" isn't unusual. And it's temporary. We've all been there. You'll yo-yo between grief/bargaining/anger/denial but eventually, given time, will reach a calm place of acceptance. Glad to hear you've lined up IC and are doing your best to provide a stable environment for your son. Reaching out to friends and family was also the right thing to do. Serving your husband's image management by keeping his affair secret must have been soul destroying. Secrecy prevented seeking the nuturing support of people who love and care about you. Good for you for telling others the truth! You and your son need your tribe around you right now.

He knows the problem, he knows what he needs to do. He keeps doing the total opposite, not taking responsibility for anything he's doing, and running off to get his next ego kibble from the OW.

Depression and anxiety aren't what caused him to cheat and lie. Lots of people with depression and anxiety DON'T betray their partners and desert their kids. He's making choices. He's responsible for his actions. Even if it's true that his obsession with OW is due to some type of mental illness this doesn't change the fact that you and son's safety matters. THAT comes first.You have to save YOURSELF first to help your son. You can't save your WH. Only he can choose to save himself - assuming he has his executive functions intact. He had enough executive function to stage an amped version of a Cheater's Playbook classic - picking a fight to have an excuse to storm off to be with AP = "Pulled a whole spiel about how I needed to trust him (no one did) and that he would find a way to not want to die". His "way to not want to die" is apparently shacking up at OW's house! IMO he's choosing this path. But I'm not a trained professional :-). The self harm and suicidal threats are concerning. If there's severe mental illness at work it's good he's getting inpatient treatment - he's where he needs to be. Continue to focus on you and your son and what you need. It will be tempting to try to untangle your WH and get sucked back into the drama of what HIS needs are. Stay strong and let his medical team untangle him. That's their job. Not yours. Your job is being the sane parent - to protect both you and your son. Hang in there.

[This message edited by BoundaryBuilder at 8:29 PM, Wednesday, June 8th]

Married 32 years w/one adult daughter
ME:BW 63
HIM:WH 65
13 month texting EA with high school X who fished him on Facebook 43 years later
PA=15 days spread over final 3 months
D-Day=April 21, 2018
Reconciled

posts: 117   ·   registered: Mar. 4th, 2021
id 8739103
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 Kanashii (original poster new member #80132) posted at 7:19 PM on Thursday, June 9th, 2022

First consultation with a lawyer is scheduled for next week. How many meetings does it usually take for a separation agreement and such to be created and put in place? And does he have to actually agree to it?

As of right now my WH is still in the ER. He cannot be placed for inpatient treatment as he's tested positive for Covid and they're waiting on that quarantine period to go through. He's still talking to the other woman while stuck at the ER. It's amazing that he's STILL connecting with her despite knowing that's what's bringing the legal separation and divorce into play...what an idiot.

Me - BW Mid 30's
Him - WH Mid 30's

D-day1: Christmas Night 2021
D-day2:6/5/22
Separated.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022   ·   location: United States
id 8739382
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Forks027 ( member #59996) posted at 1:04 AM on Friday, June 10th, 2022

Nothing can penetrate that fortress where they think things will work out just dandy for them.

Keep moving forward. At this point, there’s no saving him from himself.

posts: 404   ·   registered: Aug. 4th, 2017
id 8739456
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 4:45 PM on Friday, June 10th, 2022

He's still talking to the other woman while stuck at the ER. It's amazing that he's STILL connecting with her despite knowing that's what's bringing the legal separation and divorce into play...what an idiot.

This shows you two things:

1. He isn't too sick to be involved with AP. So you really, really need to 100% relinquish your self-imposed role as his caretaker.

2. He doesn't value your marriage.

Your awareness of these facts will help you to keep moving forward towards a new life without him, and without regrets for leaving him.

[This message edited by morningglory at 4:47 PM, Friday, June 10th]

posts: 348   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8739622
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BoundaryBuilder ( member #78439) posted at 8:38 PM on Friday, June 10th, 2022

THIS! He's not too sick to keep the involvement with AP going. But sick enough to carry out dangerous behaviors. Kanashii, "keeping him stable" is above wife pay grade! You can't be his caretaker anymore. Selection of the words "MORE self-harm" and wondering where/how he got the object used to self-harm (guessing all harmful implements were previously removed from the home due to other incidents?) says to me that this self-destructive attention seeking behavior is not new. "Melt downs" also referred to. Not a healthy environment for you or your son. Or, a healthy role model for your son. Also, gotta say it shouldn't be your good friend's job to keep him stable, or advise him on strategies to save your marriage. Gently, that approach didn't work out so well. Your friend did recognize it was time for inpatient observation, so that was a good thing.

Not only is managing his mental health needs above your pay grade, WH fired you as wifey caretaker. He's choosing OW! She's who he's reaching out to. Thinking ahead - when he's discharged, let him go to OW's house or to a relative. Calmly agree that being with her is obviously what he needs. Bye-bye. Guilt/duty/wifely empathy may override your commonsense self-preservation. Friends and relatives (or WH!) may try to guilt you into taking him back home, or suggest pausing the separation/divorce because he's "sick". Always put yourself and your kid first. You've got your son to protect. Stay strong and keep moving forward towards a better, drama free life. Doesn't mean he can't earn the right to co-parent your son after digging deep to deal with his issues, and proved reliability over time. Heck, a few years down the road if he's serious about getting healthy AND PROVED IT consistently, you may even consider reconciliation. But he has to WANT it. He will have to WORK HARD for it. He has to choose YOU and your son. Right now, for whatever reason, the marriage and your family are not a priority. And what you describe is not a safe person to have near your son. Or safe for you. His selfish behavior is REPEATEDLY traumatizing you. Let the OW have him. No tag backs. He can waltz off to a sparkly new poly life as her auxiliary ego kibble dispenser. Or as her WHATEVER - however they want to promote their sick, twisted codependency. You and your kid aren't plan B. You both deserve better.

[This message edited by BoundaryBuilder at 9:26 PM, Saturday, June 11th]

Married 32 years w/one adult daughter
ME:BW 63
HIM:WH 65
13 month texting EA with high school X who fished him on Facebook 43 years later
PA=15 days spread over final 3 months
D-Day=April 21, 2018
Reconciled

posts: 117   ·   registered: Mar. 4th, 2021
id 8739680
mad2

 Kanashii (original poster new member #80132) posted at 1:56 AM on Saturday, June 11th, 2022

Yes BoundaryBuilder, the sharp objects and such have been hidden since he started his whole "woe is me" spiel - immediately after D-day. He still found them and kept cutting at work - which I only know about because the OW (who saw it at work) said she'd tell me if he didn't. He'd kept doing more and more things while blaming me, and saying "any time you try to help everything gets worse!" Mainly because it was me saying his OW shouldn't be the one telling me these things, that he shouldn't keep being involved with her, and being the one calling him on his crap while trying to get him to go inpatient. Only our family friend could drag him away to finally get help. This is the second time in a month he's been forced inpatient by our friend for the same behaviors. I know I've been "fired" as the person he wants real help from as he stopped telling me the truth about anything/everything and still runs to her.

WH knows he is not allowed to come back here after he gets out of the hospital. He knows that he can go stay with his parents (who know the whole situation), but he's also trying to find a way to stay with other coworkers (who don't know everything going on) who also apparently are "saying the right things" that make his symptoms "Not as bad" and he's able to "eat again" etc etc. They're saying the exact same things I did, so god only knows why it's more legit from them than his wife. look

The only one who is giving me pushback about a separation agreement with visitation stuff is my WH. Both sets of our parents, our siblings, and all family friends agree that it needs to be in place for the stuff he's doing. Everyone is saying, "Yes this sucks, but it definitely needs to be done." That honestly surprises me because I expected at least a few people to go "no he'd never do that" or "why would you do this to your husband while he's obviously ill?" The lack of pushback, the lack of need to justify to others why I'm doing it just feels so...strange. The affair only started a little less than a year ago, and the problematic behaviors all of 6ish months ago. I just don't know what else to do with him acting this addicted to her to the point he is self-destructing that would keep my son safe.

Me - BW Mid 30's
Him - WH Mid 30's

D-day1: Christmas Night 2021
D-day2:6/5/22
Separated.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022   ·   location: United States
id 8739708
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morningglory ( member #80236) posted at 6:11 PM on Saturday, June 11th, 2022

That honestly surprises me because I expected at least a few people to go "no he'd never do that" or "why would you do this to your husband while he's obviously ill?" The lack of pushback, the lack of need to justify to others why I'm doing it just feels so...strange.

This shows you clearly the disconnect you've had in your mind from reality. All of this time, you've been mired in denial and self-blame (with lots of help from your narcissistic WH). The people outside of your marriage can see reality more clearly. They aren't being gaslighted by your WH, while you are. This shows how a toxic spouse can play with your mind.

I'm glad you're moving out of the fog and that others are supporting you in your journey. You're a strong person and doing very well. Keep posting your thoughts. You'll make it out of this situation and later on be so glad it's all over.

posts: 348   ·   registered: Apr. 15th, 2022
id 8739749
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TheWorldYouWant ( member #78447) posted at 9:05 PM on Saturday, June 11th, 2022

You haven't said what state you're in; each US state is a bit different in how divorce/separation is conducted. (I am an attorney in CA.) However, you PROBABLY do not need a lot of documents or information in order to begin a court action which will protect your children, e.g. a child custody emergency order. You do need the basic information for each of your kids (full name, date of birth, residence address, residence history). But beyond that, don't stress yourself out trying to gather ALL your documents or information before filing something that will get your kids protected. The attorney you speak to you will be able to answer these questions and give you guidance. And most likely, gathering all your financial information for the divorce can be handled after you make sure your kids are safe.

Me, BW: 50s. WH: 50s. Kids: 3 great young adults.

1998-2021: DDays without end. Porn, cam girls, online EA, dating and cheating websites, actual dating, online sex games, prostitutes, more cam girls. And that's only the stuff I know.

posts: 97   ·   registered: Mar. 5th, 2021   ·   location: CA
id 8739772
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 Kanashii (original poster new member #80132) posted at 10:17 PM on Tuesday, June 14th, 2022

TheWorldYouWant: I am in North Carolina. We apparently have to be living in separate residences for a year and a day before any final divorce can be filed.

morningglory: there are still times -mostly when he's been away and I'm not near him - that my brain tries to say "is everything from WH really that bad?" Being smacked back into reality by the reminders of why I'm having to do this, rereading the physical list I made of all that he's done the past 9 months leading up to today-but especially the last month-drives it back home how much the whole situation sucks and how little chance it will go back to what was our normal. There was a small chance at the beginning that we would have been able to start working things out but my WH is continuing his self destructive spiral. The push and pull of it really does drive me crazy.


My initial consult with the lawyer went well and I'll be going to their office tomorrow to pay the retainer fee and to fill out paperwork to do emergency custody. My story was something she's heard many times before so it was validating to hear from another source that I'm not crazy for going this route. Only thing is, with him still in the hospital and us having no idea where he will be in the next 2 weeks we may have trouble getting him served with the paperwork.

Otherwise, I'm still trying to figure out what my new normal will look like in the long run and trying to figure out what else I need to safeguard.

Me - BW Mid 30's
Him - WH Mid 30's

D-day1: Christmas Night 2021
D-day2:6/5/22
Separated.

posts: 15   ·   registered: Mar. 23rd, 2022   ·   location: United States
id 8740225
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