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I left my husband, fell in love, and now found out that my husband is dying of cancer

by eharmony

To solve your marriage problems without marriage counseling, visit Loveawake marriage counseling home page

Text and Image Copyright Notice. Published under copyright by Loveawake Delaware. © Copyright 2010-2021. All rights reserved.

woman standing on beachfront

Dear Loveawake: Although I've been with my husband for 23 years, my marriage was failing for quite some time. He is a very nice person but very opinionated in what he feels. It was impossible for him to see things the way I did. The emotional support was not there for me. It seemed to get worse in the last few years. Perhaps since the kids are older now, I was finding me again and I really did matter. He did listen to me, but would always tell me how I should feel instead of accepting what I actually did feel. He would tell me that would be enough or why do you need to talk about that. Actually I felt like I was being shut off, but it was o.k. to listen to him. He didn't like any negative thoughts. There were also a number of other issues. We had no romance for like 15 years, didn't like me disciplining the children, etc. I couldn't take it anymore and I told him that I didn't want to be married anymore. During my separation I met someone that I do like a lot. He seems to be a very connected type of person and that is what drew me to him. I feel that I haven't had that for so long. During the separation time I did tell my husband about him. I probably shouldn't have, but I felt the need somehow to be honest. We did agree that we could date, but he is still hurt and wants me back. I feel that I have grown a lot over this last year or so. My husband now has recently been diagnosed with last stage cancer and I'm not sure how long he has to live. I haven't brought this new love out in the open and this is not a good time. I am going to help my husband with his illness, but he doesn't think I'm together with the new guy anymore, so he will accept my help. We live in separate households. I had broken up with the new guy because of this illness and other issues, but realized I have great feelings with the new guy and can't go back to my husband. How do I handle all of this? I would like to go on with my life, but I can't even bring the new guy out to family or friends because of this situation. - Vicky

Dear Vicky: I understand that you were not getting the emotional fulfillment you needed from your marriage; otherwise you wouldn't be feeling this way. Just so you know, in 1991, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and was told to get my affairs in order because it was all through my lymph glands. Then, I met a doctor who said, "You are not a statistic and no one can ever measure the will to live." The fight for my life began. I can't imagine going through chemo and radiation alone. I also can't imagine that you could do anything else but be by his side at the end of his life. You are going to have to devote all of your energy now to your husband and make him as comfortable as you can. I think if you did anything else, you could not live with yourself afterwards. I certainly know that your children would never forgive you, no matter what they say. I have met so many young adults and older adults who, years after a parent has died, still resent the other parent who was not there when they were so needed. This is not a time where you can be thinking of your own pleasure. You have instinctively done the right thing. Good for you!

I think that the selfless thing to do here is to give your husband hope. You should become an actress worthy of an academy award and make him believe that you and he will spend the rest of your lives together. Put your whole being into this and be there for him physically, mentally and spiritually. I believe that if you do this for him, you'll feel good about yourself and in the end, though it may be difficult, you'll know with absolute certainty, that it was the right thing to do after sharing your life with him for 23 years. 



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