Eighteen years ago, we had two small boys, ages nine and seven. My then-wife left with them to her mother’s place.
I convinced her to return to our house, saying that I’d leave so the boys could grow up in their home, with me living close by.
Then I discovered that she was cheating. I was still willing to stay with her. But a counsellor told us within 15 minutes that we should not be together.
Eventually, one son moved in with me, I had to fight for the right to see the younger boy. She’s since had another son, now 15.
I can’t describe the ways this has affected me, our family, our son, until now.
Our infant granddaughter will grow up looking at life differently.
People need to think of the long-term consequences of their actions.
Confront, accept, or move on? It’s not that simple.
After the Divorce
A family breakup is rarely easy or has no unhappy results.
Your wife cheated and left, then quickly accepted your offer to leave.
Your counsellor clearly felt that the divide between you was too great to overcome.
You must’ve had similar doubts, because you didn’t try another counsellor. You made a personal sacrifice by leaving, but maybe staying would’ve turned out even worse, with further upheavals.
There’s no re-writing that history.
Now, you still have time to do the best you can regarding relationships with your sons.
The still-hurt son needs to hear how much you loved him and still do, how much you want to build his trust in your commitment to him and staying part of his family life.
Even if he doesn’t accept this easily, keep trying.
Confront, accept, or move on is no longer the issue. Living in the present the best you can is the only choice.
I love my wife dearly. She has severe depression/obsessive-compulsive disorder and other healthcare concerns.
We’ve been trying for seven years to have kids – unsuccessfully due to diabetes and weight issues.
Recently my brother had his second daughter and I’m yet to be a father at age 41.
Given her health issues and my own (heart-related), there’s a large strain on our marriage.
My wife refuses to get counselling.
I work 50 hours weekly to provide for her and her family who live with us.
We fight about our families (past stuff that can’t be let go), and money.
I don’t get the respect I need or deserve. Meanwhile I’m told constantly that I’m lazy and don’t do enough around the house.
Do I stay or do I go? How do you know when enough is enough?
Disrespected and Childless
You “love your wife dearly.” That’s an important starting point to how to handle your situation.
Envy of your brother’s new role as father and concerns about being 41, are manufactured excuses for hastening your decision to somehow change your life.
Instead, start by talking to her openly without blame. After trying so long to have children, she’s just as discouraged as you.
Discuss potential options such as in vitro fertilization, a donor womb, adoption, etc.
Also, acknowledge her stress from her mental and physical health issues.
Then consider talking to her doctor together regarding the latter, and the possibility of a plan towards having a child.
Since you feel love, say so. If you both agree to try some changes or new ideas, it’s not yet “enough.”
You’ll know when it is.
I’m very concerned about my mother, 81. She’s become my father's (age 88) primary caregiver.
After a broken hip, he was discharged from hospital over a month ago.
His inability to sleep keeps her awake because he can't stand or walk on his own.
She’s exhausted, at risk of collapsing.
He's on a waitlist for a nursing facility but it can take a long time.
Where can I ask for help? I don’t have Power of Attorney for either.
Access to visiting homemakers and nurses, elder care, and respite for caregivers depends on your parents’ locale – province/state, city or rural, etc.
Do a Google search asking what the closest organizations and official institutions provide or give referrals for the help you need.
Your father’s physician and the hospital’s social work department where he attended can also tell you what home care possibilities exist for post-discharge care.
Discuss Power of Attorney with them and a lawyer.
Tip of the day:
After a family break-up, keep showing love and seeking trusting relationships with hurt children.