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My husband and I were married in 2010, we'd been a couple for 13 years at that point, childhood sweethearts. When I was pregnant with my first baby in 2013, I discovered his secret debts, about £12,000 in credit cards and overdrafts. He claimed his business was struggling, a self employed plumber. I helped him pay his debts and tried to get him advice for his business. No savings left for my maternity leave, it was going to be a struggle. Months later, I found he'd stolen money from my bank card, had been withdrawing from our joint account.I found empty bags of drugs in his work pants (Cocaine), the penny dropped and I was devastated. A secret and very serious drug habit, one he did at work, late at night in the house when I was sleeping, tired and pregnant. From that moment,he wasn't the same person I thought I knew, he never has been since, I couldn't trust him. Despite this, I still loved him, I wanted to "fix" him. I took him to the doctors for anti depressants, went to counselling with him, tested him with urine test strips on a random basis, thinking I will keep him motivated. All of this seemed to be working, he was sorry. I kept it a secret from his family, but my family and close friends knew. We had our son, we were busy and things were stressful, but slowly I felt I was starting to regain trust and we were rebuilding our relation ship. But there were relapses. 2 in fact, after parties we'd both been at, I found drugs in the laundry bin from his pockets. It felt like we were sliding back. I began to get very paranoid, looking for signs in his behaviour, checking his bank accounts, his pockets, questioning any erratic episodes in his behaviour, it was ruling my life. I had been, I now realise, enabling him to continue his addiction, by paying his debts and doing everything for him, thinking that the ultimatums would be enough to deter him. 'if this carries on you will lose me and your son' and 'all your family will know what you've done', A couple of years went by, I had got complacent, I felt we had a future again and it was all behind us. We had a second son, he was now a year old. The post man handed me some letters, June of this year. 3 official looking letters all addressed to my husband, 'This is not a circular!' .My stomach lurched, I had to open them. 3 bank loans. £40,000 in total, demanding money not paid. I felt sick, I shouted him, he snatched the letters from me. "What the hell happened?", I'm screaming now, "You Know!" he says. 


So this is it. that was the last straw, I called up his parents, told them what had happened. I told him I couldn't carry on, he needed to move out, we needed to divorce. I sought legal advice, what if he goes bankrupt? " You need to divorce him, quickly!" all my friends and family advised. But this was quick, so quick, my heart hasn't caught up yet. This man, who would put me and his family in this pitiful situation, to risk everything, and for what? Drugs, high's, all gone, nothing left but debt, debt that threatens to swallow us all up. 

I'm furious, most of the time, I am consumed by anger and resentment, it governs my every mood, it incapacitates me. I am grieving, I feel that I am wounded in some way. I am doing what I am expected to do, what I should do, but I grieve for the family I had, or thought I had. I worry about being alone.I worry about him meeting someone else and how I will feel, I worry about money and the house, I worry about having to tell people, what do I tell them? How do I tell them. I know that I shouldn't care what they think, but I can't stop myself from caring. I feel like because I'm hurting, he should be hurting too, and he probably is but he doesn't show it like me, I don't hide my emotions from him, I tell him when I'm hurting and I want him to feel it. I sabotage our everyday conversations, I do it subconsciously, like I'm trying to provoke him. He remains unreliable, late to pick the kids up, or not turning up at all, I take this personally and I let him see my anger and emotion. All of this I want to stop, I don't expect not to feel these feelings, perhaps time will make them lessen, but I don't want my emotions to incapacitate me, or for it to manifest itself with my children.  I also don't want to be the woman who's texting her ex husband (or soon to be) telling him how much he's hurt her and often not even receiving a reply. How do I move on from this and stop wallowing in self pity? I'm struggling, day to day, trying to be a working single mum, trying to get through the evenings feeling alone. Friends and family call, but they have their own children and lives, they can't always be there, they say they are there whenever I need them, but ultimately, it's just me there now, me and the kids and just this terrible void. On paper, I should hate this man, I should feel glad to be rid of him, ready to start again, but he's made his mark on my life, been my companion for 20 years and been with me through everything, aside from the things he has done, the lies and the addiction, he is funny and kind and I see the person he was before. Financial detachment is difficult, but trying to  emotionally detach from someone, and so suddenly, just feels impossible. I struggle with depression, I had post natal depression and have suffered terrible insomnia in the last few months. I get stuck in patterns of negative thought, often. I don't want to go back on anti depressants because of the side effects, they made me so lethargic that I couldn't get anything done, and life is so busy trying to keep working and keep the house going and pay for childcare. I have sometimes wondered why he turned to drugs in the first place, was he unhappy? I am always looking for a reason, he says there isn't a reason, he doesn't know why, it just happened. 

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Dear Gemma,

I'm so sorry to hear what happened. Its a lot for one person to go through. I think that is the hardest part of life. We can't account for how another person thinks or will behave. We put so much trust and love into another person, its hard to fathom why they would throw everything away from something like drugs. I think it takes a long time to work through our feelings.

I hope you will surround yourself with loving friends and family and know you did nothing but love this person the best you could.

And if you want to, maybe consider counselling or joining a support group in the community or through church for extra support.

Thinking of you.

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Gemma, I was reading your post and couldn't hold back my tears.

I faced a similar situation, but not so hard as yours. My husband and I were a couple only a year and three years married, unfortunately, he had time to blow all my savings to drugs. Finally, he explained this by his job (he’s an architect), he was constantly swamped, said he was needing something to stimulate his brain. I suggested him to take a treatment, and when I found a good treatment center on AddictionResource site (one of these: https://addictionresource.com/drug-rehab/men-only/), he refused. That was the last straw for me. We divorced three months ago. I thought I’d feel better after getting rid of toxic relationships, but I didn’t.

You are so strong. I believe that time heals all wounds and I wish this happens as soon as possible.

  • Hugs 1

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Dear Mary, Thank you for your kind words.  I’m so sorry you’ve had a similar experience, it’s truly an awful thing to have to deal with. My divorce came through last month and it really left me feeling a mixture of relief and grief. But weeks are going by and I’m starting to feel like I am managing better, I hope your doing ok too Mary. Such a shame that he wouldn’t want to get help. My ex would say he was seeing his councillor but wouldn’t actually go, like pretending to get help, lying to himself more than anything. I still get the occasional bailif turning up at the house, but I just have to say he has nothing here and give his forwarding address, it’s pretty terrifying. I’m glad to be getting a fresh start, but it’s hard to see him so often when we’re arranging childcare, the kids really miss him being around the house. I hope you find that time helps you feel better, time, distractions, filling space with people you care about and who care for you. Keep me posted, take care xx 

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