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Afraid of partners suicidality; I want a divorce

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sheepify

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Jul 15, 2020
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USA
Hey all,

I have lived in fear of my partners suicidality and I think enough is enough. We've hurt each other a lot. I've hurt them a lot. But lately there's a huge crisis causing them to feel suicidal. I don't know how to navigate asking for divorce.

I sometimes don't know who I'm with. The partner that loves me or the one that hates me. I'm sure it's the one that loves me but this is all too much; sometimes I feel like for their sake they need to leave me. Find someone who will love them better. It needs to happen. I can't give them what they need.

Regardless I don't know how to ask for a divorce. Especially without constantly worrying about their suicidality.
 
Lunar Lady

Lunar Lady

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Hello Sheepify,

This must be so painful for you.

I think you need to have as big a safety net as you can muster under your partner. I fully support and understand your need to exit this relationship but there will be no sense of relief or moving forwards for you if you are constantly worrying about your suicidal ex.

Have you both got family? You need your relatives supporting you and your partner’s family stepping up to give support in your absence.

Would your partner agree to couple’s counselling? This might be a very gentle and gradual way for you to reveal just how unhappy you are with a trained professional mediating and supporting you both.

I hope you can share the concern and burden of your partner’s fragility. This is too much to cope with alone and ultimately you must do what is healthy and happy for yourself.

Wishing you all the best and sending lots of love x
 
S

sheepify

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That would help! I want to lay them down easy.

I should clarify, though, that this wouldn't be an issue if we didn't have other issues with our relationship. I actually think they are the most perfect and sweet person, and understand where the suicidal ideation comes (pain, uncertainty).

Truth be told I thought a certain way about her body and when it comes up she becomes suicidal and I've started denying it. She keeps getting triggered and wanting to know, but the thing is, it plays into her body dysmorphia/empowers it AND makes her suicidal. I feel like I can't tell her how I used to feel, and I say it was resentment that made me unattracted to you when it could have also been my immaturity/fatphobia. She says that if it was not resentment then I am crossing her boundaries because I was ever able to dislike her body. If I say I felt unattracted to your body then she will ask 1000 questions, and look to feel bad about her own body. I have to lie or I will seriously hurt her. And it might sound like a white lie but it's more like a web of lies. And to complicate things we had relationship issues, and I was dealing with numbness and we were dealing trauma together.

Sometimes I'm not sure, sometimes I think it's my immaturity. And I can't tell her that. Because it makes her suicidal and dysmorphic. I don't know if I should tell her how I felt flat out or if I should make up some other excuse for leaving her.

Right now I feel I should make an excuse but she's going to want to know why.
I also worry that she's going to want to make it work if she doesn't know the truth.

Do I tell her the truth and make her suicidal and dysmorphic. Or tell her a lie to make things less painful for her.

I don't know how to navigate this. I know y'all are probably thinking tell a lie, but she's going to ask 1000 questions and try to understand. I'll have to tell a lot of lies to stave her away from knowing the real reason.

Note that I don't care about her body anymore. I love it however it changes; I just needed to stop watching porn and be honest about / reflect on what I'm attracted to. I needed to grow up. I feel like I had the mindset of a teenager.

Still, I love her and want her to be okay. I would stay with her in spite of how suicidal she was if I knew that I could give her what she needed but I don't believe that I can at times and I don't think that the up and down is good for her. I think this relationship has been harmful to her and as much as I'm trying to turn the ship around we still have our past.
 
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Nukelavee

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As has been said else where, yeah, you saying you didn't find her attractive anymore complicates things. (I'd like to point out while I think it was a foolish and hurtful thing to say, or maybe inconsiderate - physical attraction is part of a relationship. And it's often a give and take thing. Ideally, you love a partner no matter the physical changes, but in reality, it's not really wrong or a flaw to one day realize the lack of attraction because of changes in your partner. There are better and worse ways to handle it.)

I dunno. There's something off, to me, about her suicidal ideations being utterly connected to something you said months or years ago. That is, it shows, along with her violent and abusive outbursts, that there is a deep flaw in the relationship.

It's something I need to think about more, I think.
 
S

sheepify

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There is something more deeply wrong and it is me. I contradict myself and I lie because the truth is hard and I'm scared of her reactions. I have no reason to be afraid of her except for her suicidality and me being a big baby. I sometimes get emotionally numb and it confuses me so I lie about it. But ultimately this relationship has had a lot of red flags and she should not feel safe. It needs to be over for her sake. I haven't been the best partner at all and she loves me deeply.

I have been lying, a lot, to prevent conflict. And it's really fucked up that I have been doing that. Her parents forced us to get married and I just went with it bc I was afraid she would leave or hurt herself instead of saying I don't feel ready and convincing her not to. Since then there has been a lot of lies. It needs to end for her sake. This isn't okay and there's no salvaging this I think. I wish there was a way to be more certain but I think this is as certain as I will get.

I need time to be alone, to think bout myself and it isn't her fault. She will be able to move on and find happiness after this, right? This will be better for her. She's extremely stressed now and I know it's my fault, I brought back a lot of old trauma.
 
N

Nukelavee

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You can't shape your life and self from fear of another's reaction. In the end, doing that warps and twists you both.
 
G

Girl interupted

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Totally triggered. This feels like an accountability issue that the OP is unwilling to accept.

You are only hearing one side of the story.
 
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MuminAcrisis

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I think you need to step back from any decisions and do some serious work on yourself first as you clearly have a few issues and recognise that. I would get yourself assessed and some therapy to really explore what is going on with you before understanding what is at the root of your relationship problems because to me that is just not clear here. You already seem to know you are not being honest or consistent but running away from a relationship that exposes the worst of you is not the answer you will just move the symptom elsewhere or to someone else. Get some help first and understand more about what is motivating you to lie all the time and then maybe when you can start being honest with yourself and others, at least you'll know it is motivated by the right reasons and motivations.
 
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WhySoSerious

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I agree that this needs to be handled gently. If anything because if s/he does harm themselves it will inevitably bring up a lot of guilt for you and others will label you as the evil partner who left in a time of crisis. That said I suspect there will forever be a crisis, no matter when you decide to leave.

With that in mind you can't stay with someone just because s/he may end their lives. That is neither 1) fair on you and your rights to be happy 2) healthy as it is essentially coercive even if it is not intentional. Each individual must own their own behaviours and I wonder what the expression of (or actual attempts at) suicide are trying to achieve. What is the function of the suicidality? It sounds like you may have fallen into this trap:

Express how you feel > discomfort for your partner > partner cannot tolerate the discomfort and seeks to escape it by threatening suicide > you amend your behaviour and s/he settles down.

It is classic conditioning and reinforcement. By threatening or expressing a desire to end their life, your partner is shaping your behaviour (voicing displeasure at something) and it sounds like it has been pretty effective if you active avoid certain subjects. I also wonder what she is trying to achieve from asking 1000 questions, is it that she in some way wants to feel punished for something? There are many different potentials here.

I have a few questions:

What does she say comes to mind when you have said things to her in the past?
When she makes threats to end her life how do you respond in the immediate?
Can you have an open, honest conversation without it becoming emotional and a struggle?
What is she doing to change her responses? Expecting you to be silent in fear of upsetting her isn't ok.
Do you validate her experience? Do you actively understand how she may be feeling and COMMUNICATE this to her when she is distressed?

Just some ideas or thoughts!
 
W

WhySoSerious

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Totally triggered. This feels like an accountability issue that the OP is unwilling to accept.

You are only hearing one side of the story.
This is certainly a position that I thought about...

OP - if you have said hurtful things have you owned it, admitted it and made amends for saying it? Are you actually sorry for saying things that can be hurtful? And be honest.

I think we need to look at the middle ground between:

Expecting her not to respond to trigger events versus Taking full accountability for trigger events

There is probably a middle where we can accept that we have said or done things that are hurtful whilst at the same time not owning the other person's emotions once you have tried to repair the problem.

I don't like blaming either party because I wasn't there and didn't hear what was said or done. Inevitably people will have different interpretations of events.
 
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