Helena was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a type of blood cancer, two years ago and initially, her husband was a “wonderful, helicopter husband”, she revealed.
However, things took a painful turn when her husband stopped hugging her and chose to sleep on the couch instead of next to her.
“He wouldn’t go to doctor appointments unless I specifically asked him to go. He wouldn’t give me hugs or if he did they were half-hearted,” she explained.
Towards the end of 2023, Helena’s husband began to “shut down” and “stonewalled” her. “I’m not sure when it started, but my husband stopped coming to bed and sleeping on the couch,” she said.
Despite her pleas for his love, affection, and support, he continued to deny her. “Finally, I confronted him about it. But he just shut down. The more I pushed for him to talk to me the more nasty he got,” Helena shared.
The woman revealed how her husband’s final words before leaving were harsh. She said: “Finally, he got p****d and told me, ‘Congratulations, your worst nightmare is going to come true. You’re going to die alone’.”
“He screamed at me that he didn’t want to be married to me anymore,” she claimed, then revealing that on New Year’s Eve, he told her he wanted their marriage to end. He left that night and only came back once to get some work tools.
Helena, who is battling cancer, also has to look after two dogs and five cats. Since her husband left, he hasn’t returned to discuss their relationship.
She expressed her shock: “All of this has blindsided me. I knew because I was sick that neither of us were happy, but I didn’t think it was our relationship that was the problem.
“Up until he left he would call and chat multiple times a day, was still saying I love you, all the normal things. But almost subversively punishing me too. How does someone who has loved you for over half our lives suddenly become so vicious and uncaring?”
The Reddit post stirred up plenty of emotions, with hundreds reacting. One person sympathetically commented: “This is the saddest thing I’ve ever read.
“I’m so, so sorry this has happened in your life honey.” Another shared: “It’s sad but very common that a man leaves his spouse after she has cancer. You can’t see it now but you’re better off without him.”
A user claiming to be a divorce lawyer offered advice, writing: “I would urge you to contact some local divorce attorneys ASAP.
“They can help you get access to money which you can use to relocate sooner. This is a crisis. He has a legal obligation to support you.”
Another user related to Helena’s experience, sharing: “My ex-wife of 25 years did a similar thing. After my lung disease diagnosis she did a slow fade and eventually (after a lot of unkindness towards me) left.
“I am sad I devoted 25 years to a person who failed me but I’m grateful that I eventually learned who she was.” Adding consolation, they wrote: “I hope you can find your own peace or meaning in what happened to you.”
For support with a cancer diagnosis, visit MacMillan’s website for more information.