I never thought I would be writing a post like this but here it is. I have been dumped because of chronic illness. About a month ago I was in hospital for 4 weeks and that was the final straw. I have been with my boyfriend for 3 years and I told him fairly early on that I had Cystic Fibrosis.
He lost his wife to cancer 3 years ago and didn’t think he could go through that again so he ended the relationship after 6 months. We had a six month break and then we got back together. He saw someone in the meantime for 3 months but it didnt work out. Things were okay but I always felt insecure due to my health issues.
Unexpectedly last year, I had colon cancer. Luckily it was caught early and life carried on. Due to his insecurities however, I found out much later that he had gone on to Match.com when I had the cancer and was on there for nine months. He didn’t meet anyone interesting and told me it was “only light window shopping”. Like a fool I stayed with him.
Feb 2019 it all came crashing down when I picked up a bug called Mycobacterium Abscessus. It’s thought I picked it up during a holiday to Thailand in October last year. This led to a four week stay in hospital on really strong intravenous drugs to get rid of this bacteria. (So far, I have had tests come back negative for Abscessus which is really good news but you have to be clear for a year before you are officially free of it..ten months to go!)..
We had been looking at houses together and were planning to move in together before the Abscessus appeared. He wanted me to sign a prenup which I agreed to but he didn’t consider my needs when choosing a home and never looked at any of the suggestions I gave him. It was his money so I took it on the chin. I still didn’t feel very valued though or included.
He had sold his last house at the end of January and moved into my home. So here we are, living together in my home and he tells me he doesn;t want me to move in with him anymore. I felt crushed. he said he still loves me but doesn’t want to end up “being my carer”. Ouch!
I was plunged into ten days of the most awful depression. I was worrying about getting rid of the Abscessus and the implications if I don’t , I was also now going to be homeless soon. My home had sold in the meantime (I rent) and I was given notice.
I was also losing my relationship with a man I loved. I felt shattered and worthless. he is still in my home and it is a struggle to get through the days.
Trying to maintain a relationship with a chronic illness is certainly a challenge. I have tried to give myself pep talks (this is giving me a lump in my throat) and tell myself that some men will love me for me and see beyond the illness. My boyfriend is incredibly risk averse and all he can see is that I will probably die early and he doesn’t want that liability. On a logical level I can understand it but it doesn’t make the emotional pain any easier.
So, one of my worst fears has come true. I am older and single and with a precarious future. If I get through this, I will surely be able to handle anything that comes my way.
Thing is, although I am tearful a lot of the time (it’s extremely difficult living under one roof for now) and my emotions are up and down, I am actually handling it.
I am working again, seeing clients. I am taking care of my health and keeping up the strenuous routine required since the two positive tests for Abscessus. I am getting out of bed each day and looking at properties to rent. I have even looked at buying a property so it’s not all bad.
I have done my best to distance myself from my scary thoughts and not ‘buy into them’. They can be pretty intimidating at times but I remind myself not to think the worst and to just keep putting one foot in front of the other. it’s okay to go slower, I just mustn’t stop walking altogether or go backwards!
So, if you are going through a break up, have recently been diagnosed with cancer or are going through a tough time, remember that it won’t always be this way and if you feel at your lowest point, the good thing is that it can only go UPWARDS from here.
I still have a few very difficult weeks ahead of me but i try not to thik too much about that as my power is in the moment and thinking about everything ahead would be too overwhelming.
Chunking is a good strategy when life feels too much – break it down into manageable chunks and focus on one at a time. My top priority is to get my health back on track. Along side that is finding a place to live…
I don’t know why some of us have such heavy burdens but taking action is far better than standing still.
Lots of love
PS. I have used a picture of my dog, Socks as he has been such a comfort to me! Love him to bits…