Reluctant Carer

Heading may seem wierd, but here goes… He’s my 2nd husband. Married 5 years after I was widowed. However, 8 years after we married I found he’d been having an affair for at least 7 of those years. We sold our house and moved to make a fresh start (as I thought) but 3 months after moving into our new house found the affair was still going on, when he told me not to make him choose because I would lose… (It that had been said before we sold our old house then I wouldn’t be here now!!!), So for the last 20 years I buried my head in the sand and we have been living separate lives, more of a house share really, but to rest of family all appeared normal. Then end 2018/beginning 2019 his health deteriorated so rapidly that I had to help him shower/dress/drive him to doctor/hospital appointment for his ulcerated ankles. Got to the stage where couldn’t get him dressed, so called on social services - they immediately got district nurses to call with result that hospital bed/hoist/etc installed with nurses calling in every day. He was admitted to hospital end March last year with pneumonia, and then discharged home a week later with carers coming in twice a day. Since then, after various setbacks, he’s now in a position where he can’t do anything for himself (except eat(messily) and pick up a drink), I feel trapped - I can “escape” for about an hour on a Saturday to do my main food shopping and again for about 30 mins for top-up shop. His sons live at opposite ends of the country so too far away to help. My daughter is a single mum 2 hours drive away, hut I don’t want to worry her as she has enough to cope with as her daughter has dyspraxia and is on the autism spectrum. Am I being selfish for wishing he would just go away? How do I get that thought from my head? Just don’t know where to go for help…

Two obvious options. Divorce him, and keep half the house, or wait for him to die and keep it all.
Are you aware of NHS Continuing Healthcare?
Claiming Attendance Allowance for him?
How is he mentally? Financially?
Does he have over £23,000 in savings in his name? Yes/No.
Do you have Power of Attorney?

He wasn’t worried about you when he had that affair was he! Keep that thought in mind, and any guilt should slip away.

This is payback time. You owe him NOTHING. He was so cruel and uncaring to you. No one can be forced to care, even a wife for a husband.

I don’t think for one second that you are selfish! Your husband is the selfish person. Where is his mistress now I wonder?!
Can you seek advice from a solicitor. No one should be forced to care.

Hi Ann,

Not here to give advice but i rly do think that many carers in a position like yours would have these same thoughts. It doesnt mean that you are a bad or selfish person for wanting an escape.

If you do find that sharing your own experiences and hearing the experiences of potentially similarly situated individuals makes you feel better, Carers UK are running online weekly meet ups for unpaid carers to take some time for themselves and chat to other carers. Feel free to join if you’d like to and there’s no pressure to share anything you don’t want to.

Thank you all for responding…
PoA in place (done at same time as wills after loss of my son in 2018 when he passed away from heart problems aged 49 intestate).
Doesn’t qualify for continuing healthcare.
Don’t qualify for carer’s allowance, but attendance allowance claimed which just about covers the cost of carers to get him up washed and dressed in the mornings and ready for bed at night) when added to his pension,
Divorce not an option as he has dementia (should have been brave enough to do it years ago)
Love killed off in March 2000, but i still care… (can’t think why!!!) although don’t like the person he became (contradictory?)
(Posted original message after a particulary bad day but when I went back to delete it there had been replies so left it on…)o