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Is It Common At All For A PTSD Sufferer To Cheat On Their Spouse?

Discussion in 'Supporter Relationships' started by zazazawa, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. zazazawa

    zazazawa New Member

    Hi everyone again. I posted before about my husband and his new girlfriend and wanted to update people on some things and hopefully get more opinions from you all.

    Well my husband has made a couple appt.'s with a psychologist/psychiatrist team so far and he has been diagnosed with PTSD and supposedly 2 other anger disorders he says. They said that they will try different treatments but he may have to be admitted to a hospital for up to 2 months or so.

    Just to update over the past 4 months we've been seperated and he always goes from "I love u this has nothing to do with you and when I get better I WILL be back" to "I dont love you, I want a divorce." Well a few weeks ago he has gotten stuck on "I love my new girlfriend, I want a divorce. I cant be with you right now cause everytime I see or hear you it makes me too angry and that he wants to see me but he cant." I told him I want to stay with him and support him through this but he completely shut me out.

    The last time I talked to him was on my birthday, the 25th. He actually called me and was pleasant and said that he was planning on changing his phone number and when he did he would give it to me. The next day it was off and I still dont have the number and no one will give it to me.

    I want to think that he still loves me but he INSISTS that he doesnt love, miss or think about me anymore and that he LOVES this nasty girlfriend. Have any of you gone through this before? I mean about the cheating. Its so tuff for me cause I have to let him go but I just still love him like crazy and just want to be there for him. He says he wants me to go on with my life and if our love is meant to be than he'll be back. It hurts me terribly though to think that he's super happy with a girl that he met a few months ago and we've always been there for each other for over 7 years.

    Please give me any responses you have that would be helpful. Do PTSD sufferers usually come back when they get proper treatment? I am going on with my life and trying my best to make myself happy but he is always on my mind and he hasnt even gotten me papers yet.

    Thanks a bunch!

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  3. Manic11

    Manic11 Mystery Member

    In my personal opinion, no one has the right to cheat on someone their in a relationship with. It's just plain wrong, no matter what. I am a PTSD sufferer and that does not give me the right to cheat, steal or hurt anyone, does it?

    twinkle30 and Oldguy like this.
  4. zazazawa

    zazazawa New Member

    Thanks Manic11. No it doesnt give him the right at all to do this to me. Thats why Im worried cause he said that its our marriage AND his PTSD problem combined. I wish we could have worked on our marriage and he kept saying that we could he would just have to work on his problem first. Do you think that he is just trying to latch on SOMEONE since he has shut me and almost his family out and doesnt have many friends besides this one girl? Somedays he says that he loves her and the next he says he doesnt love her or himself or anything. Its so confusing...
  5. a nonny mouse

    a nonny mouse Well-Known Member
    Premium Member

    Well here's a lil confession session. I did sleep with someone else at the end of my last relationship (my best friend at the time, who really, I was far more suited to). It was a one off thing - not an 'affair', but still. Wont go into the details. It was wrong. It's also part of the reason I've always maintained my breakup had nothing to do with PTSD. I simply had fallen out of love and just took far too long to be honest about that/face that because I genuinely cared about my ex. In truth, sometimes leaving is the kindest and most loving thing to do. I did not want to be with that person anymore. Not every breakup with someone with PTSD is about PTSD. Breakups hurt for whatever reason - this is a discussion which gets looped over and over - it's not always PTSD that can be blamed or used as an excuse for the failure of a relationship. This is just my experience and everybody is different.

    Also, I will just add - that isn't to say that my ex partner wasn't dealing with PTSD symptoms and that they played no part in the relationship. They certainly did. But at the end of the day - if I had to 'blame' something honestly on the failure of the relationship, it wouldn't be PTSD.
  6. zazazawa

    zazazawa New Member

    Hey Superjen. Thanks for the honest reply which I know is a very likely possiblilty even though I hate it. He has told me that he has fallen out of love with me but I dont know why he kept telling me that he did still love me. Am I just keeping too much hope still? When you fell out of love with your ex do you think that you would ever want to go back? If the person you fall out of love with goes back to the person OR better than the person you did first fall in love with WOULD you want to give them another chance? Do you think that if he breaks up with this girl that he might want to work on us again(that is if Im even willing anymore)?
  7. a nonny mouse

    a nonny mouse Well-Known Member
    Premium Member

    I genuinely can't answer that for you zazazawa - everybody is different. I can only give you my experience. My experience is - at the very beginning of the breakup I probably would've been more inclined to go 'oh it's my PTSD'. But no - two completely separate issues. I think, honestly, it was a very 'safe' relationship with my ex. We were very good friends basically. Supportive of each other, etc. None of the things that differentiate 'friends' from 'partners' were there by the end. I had fallen so out of love I actually did something I never thought I'd do - ie, be unfaithful. I personally think if there is cheating going on in a relationship you've got some very real problems there. And they extend beyond 'but it's PTSD'. That's just my opinion and my experience.
  8. 2quilt

    2quilt I'm a VIP

    I personally dont think that PTSD gives anyone an excuse to cheat. I may be sick with this mental illness that makes me sad, angry, grumpy, disassociate, etc, but I am still responsible for my actions and I know what I am doing (unless I am disassociating at the moment...)

    The logic that says that PTSD makes me cheat would also say that premenstrual syndrome made me shoot the driver who cut me off.
    "Your Honor, some people just need killin'."
    twinkle30 likes this.
  9. a nonny mouse

    a nonny mouse Well-Known Member
    Premium Member

    Exactly 2quilt. It doesn't give anyone the right to cheat. For me to say 'I cheated because of PTSD' is as ridiculous as my partner thinking 'she cheated because of PTSD'. The word denial springs to mind.

    However, that said - infidelity does happen and it can be overcome. So I don't wanna be as black and white as to say 'if your partner cheats it is over'. It does happen that relationships can continue after something like that. I suppose the issue becomes whether or not both people are committed to saving the relationship.Truly committed to saving it and wanting to be in it. In my case - no. My biggest mistake was prolonging the inevitable until it reached something as wrong as infidelity.
  10. Erica1311

    Erica1311 New Member

    I know this thread is fairly old but I wanted to post for zazazawa bc I can relate in a way. My husband suffers from PTSD and has for more then the 7 years we have been together due to being a Marine and being in War. My husband has left me or walked out on me 3 times over the course of our relationship of 7 years, 2 of those time have been during our 5 year marriage. Just as someone stated when he is away there is little to no contact with me or anyone really, he will send texts or leave messages when he knows I am asleep. The messages range from I love you and I miss you so much, you deserve so much better then me and then they will go to you hurt me so much and I don't love you anymore, I want a divorce. During our seperations I have always stood by him and reminded him of the wonderful man he is and how real our love is. Usually writing an actual letter on paper helps cause they can read it over and over again. When he tries to be mean to me I just respond with you can try to push me away as much as you want but it wont work bc we are stronger then this. I know you love me so when you ready I will be here for you always. They need to know your not going anywhere. Seeking help is always a good idea. The longest he was away was 6 weeks before we were married, the second time was a week and a half while being married and the third most recent time was for 3 weeks. So as a wife of a husband with PTSD I can relate to most of you and I am here to help in anyway I can or to just listen and maybe even ask for advice. Goodluck to you all and have a blessed day.
    Xica, still_i_rise and Friday like this.
  11. Ayesha

    Ayesha Yarn and Cat Crazy.

    Yes, old thread, @Erica1311 I just want to point out the big overgeneralizing in the title of this thread. It is not common for PTSD sufferers to cheat on their spouses IMHO and PTSD is not an excuse to cheat on a spouse.
    #10 Ayesha, Jul 26, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2014
  12. Did you ask where he went? My vet did this earlier in the week for a day, but came home because I contacted his mom, in the event he was planning on hurting himself I needed a third party involved.
  13. Sweetpea76

    Sweetpea76 Semper ubi sub ubi.

    It is common for sufferers to isolate. Many of them use it as a coping mechanism when they are dealing with more stress than they can handle. Rather than asking him where he went, it may be a good idea to give him some time to feel better. If he was just isolating, and he is not generally a cheater, then it is doubtful he was out cheating that day. Often time isolation has nothing to do with the relationship or them wanting to isolate from YOU, it is about them needing space.
    Broken Dahlia, Xica and Friday like this.

    KASANDRA Guest

    Hello, I will try to make this short. I am in the process of a divorce with my husband who has PTSD. We've been together for 10 yrs. I've experienced the same exact things you were/are going through . he might even have a baby on the way. All these years I've been trying to just love him and be there for him no matter what, but I begin to realize how damaging it begin to be to my happiness, health, emotional and physical well being.

    He hates taking his meds, because they make him sleep to much. He doesn't think the psych's know anything , but think he knows everything . I try to get him to try different things that might help, especially natural remedies and sch, but then he refuses.

    Well, I can go on and on, but the bottom line is, I can continue to give my energy/help to someone who doesn't want to give their own energy nor trying/wanting the help for themselves. I can only be called out my name and disrespected so much. Don't get me wrong, I love my husband with all my heart, but he chose to leave like yours did and I begged, pleaded, apologized , accepted everything as my fault, forgave him for cheating and for treating me like trash. I tried everything I could to stroke his ego and no matter what, it's damn if I do, damn if I don't .

    It gets to the point when you have to worry about self. I never thought I could be so broke, but he broke me the heck down. I begin loosing myself, try to cater to him, understand him, be supportive to him and motivating . It's completely over for us, I just can't do it anymore and plus with a baby on the way. I just can't . That's just a bit much for me. He will always have a place in my heart, because I've never loved anyone like I loved and was in love with him, but I have to take care of me and find me again.

    One more thing. I kind of start feeling like the PTSD became the excuse,justification and/or reason for him to do extra stuff like cheating for instance and are almost positive that would excepted. All excuses are, that's part of my PSTD, but let me do something like that and the conversation is always different .

    Best of luck with your situation . I hope everything works out for you. God Bless.
    Sweetpea76 and Friday like this.

    KASANDRA Guest

    I feel the same way. You are absolutely right. People will sometimes use their condition as an excuse, reason or justification. Thx for the confirmation. I was pretty sure I didn't have STUPID written on my face. LOL.
  16. You're so right. PTSD sufferers tend to use this disorder as an excuse. Or convenient for them. It may not even be PTSD. People know what they're doing. These guys are conscious of their actions and just dont want to be held accountable. Same thing happened to me. Trust..its not the disorder. Its him and he doesnt want the relationship. Move on bc hes not coming back and if he does later why would you want him. Who'd want a broken toy or dead dog? He betrayed you and there was deceit so let it go. The same way he did you hes gonna do the new chick. Hes gonna lie to her too.
    Krys123 likes this.
  17. Whispering_Truth

    Whispering_Truth I'm a VIP

    ..not if they have any substance and character to them. PTSD does not make someone cheat. Being a cheater makes someone cheat.
    twinkle30 and Krys123 like this.
  18. SameBoat

    SameBoat Guest

    I'm going through this exact thing. If u had done any of what my husband if 15 years did, the conversation would be entirely different. But now, he is mentally ill with PTSD, and he needs my help, but I won't help him by giving him a chance to make amends. He cheated and deserted us when I left because i could no longer take the blatant disrespect of him talking to the woman in my and our children's presence. I and out children went in public assistance, etc. I don't think I can come back from that. It was horrible and he went to such extremes. I understand why you are putting yourself and child first.
  19. Raina

    Raina Guest

    Idk if post partem Depression can cause u to have thoughts about hirting ur child u think it could cause u to feel completly disconnected from ur spouse after my pregnancy i seriously thought i was done with my spouse out of love i felt like i did not care at all and cheated and a month later i was like what the hell did i do i miss him its not an excuse and its horrible i did that to the love of my life and ill forvever regret it but i feel we are human and sadly we make selfish discisions sometimes mabe not cheating but other things too like neglect or name call those things hurt too now im praying and hoping my husbnd will forgive me which he still has not my advice to your huband would be dumb the new girl cause she could be a temporary feeling n dumping her the pain would be bearable n loosing you is gunna feel like him loosing part of himself thats how i feel and ive been with my husband 7 years too
  20. Krys123

    Krys123 New Member

    I'm personally going through with this myself and we just had a 3 month old baby. I don't believe this has anything to do with his PTSD because he has been drinking every weekend since we left 2 weeks before Christmas. And he doesn't sleep at home. He stays with this girl who's an Ex-Marine and her roommate. While I was pregnant he told me that I love you but I'm not in love with you. He has been yelling divorce divorce divorce. He would go to Walmart or go out to drink and leave me in the house while I was pregnant. I have tried calling the chain of command to inform them of the ptsd affecting our marriage, and I never received a response back. Just calling, texting, and video calling us when he wants and not sending money for our child, just drinking it all up. I feel like I'm at my wits end with him. I digress, but the ptsd is sometimes used an excuse, a crutch, for them not to face their reality and responsibilities.
  21. Sweetpea76

    Sweetpea76 Semper ubi sub ubi.

    Even if PTSD caused blatant, rampant, infidelity... Why would it make a difference?

    Cheating hurts the same no matter what the reason is for it. It's never OK.
    TreeHugger, joeylittle and Krys123 like this.
  22. Deano77

    Deano77 New Member

    Well i dont know if anybody else has gone through what i have but my wife was attacked at work 2 years ago which had an affect almost right away and a few months after that she left me and kids saying she needed to sort her head out to get herself better, i was as supportive as i could be so got her into the doctors to finally be told that she had ptsd.

    With all that had gone on she started to get the help she wanted while still living apart from us but always coming round to try and keep things normal ( not sure if using the word normal is ok to use) for the kids, anyway 2 years down the road things was starting to change as she was going out alot with some friends and starting to not come round as much or stay as long when she was here but i could sort of see she looked as though she was getting better. To cut the story short ive now found out that the friends she was going out so much with dont even exist and that for the last 6 months she has been seeing somebody else and that he was living with her at her house as i was always asked not to come round uninvited as this was her safe place so she kept telling me.

    She has now give the house up and moved back in with her mom as asked me if i could help her as this secret life she was living was just a mask from reality where she felt normal ( her words) and that she never stopped loving me but was to scared and embarrassed to open up to me properly.

    Sorry about how long this all is but ive only just found out about all this and was wondering if anybody else had been through something similar.
    #21 Deano77, Jan 26, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 27, 2016
    mr_smith_v2 and Krys123 like this.
  23. CJmaxwell

    CJmaxwell Guest

    That helped a lot! My husband just left because I said I wanted a divorce after 3 days of his yelling took a toll on me. A week later he found a 21 year old girl with braces. He is 34, and I'm 32. He left me once but never cheated. We respected each other loved hard and the sex was amazing.

    I'm wondering how long will it take for him to come back? We have a one year old too. I gave him a son he has always wanted. This just don't make sense. I know that 21 yr old will not be there long because you have to have so much patience for my husband and not yell back to make it worse. Which is something I learned quick. A 21 year old won't do that. Because if you let him tell he will start to think rational after a short time after. She is not someone that is a woman ready to settle down. She is 21 with braces still. Do I move on or wait.? It has been 3 weeks?
    #22 CJmaxwell, Jan 29, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2016
  24. Sunnyside

    Sunnyside Guest

    Deano77 I am so sorry to hear this about your experience. I have PTSD and have had it for a few years with the diagnosis being 5 months ago. I became a completely different person, in moral, interactions, life, decisions it changed the very essence of who I am and have always been. I had no clue what was happening but knew I didn't like who I was becoming and how horrible I felt inside about myself and how hard it was to function. Please know that what is going on for your wife is and will be the biggest battle of will she will EVER FACE in life. There is no amount of love that can help especially when the person with PTSD can't even feel it or connect to it. I know this first hand, if she is lucky enough to have you and your children's gift of presence can be enough to KNOW she is loved, respected and cared for. PTSD tends to deliver it's victims to a fantasy world where minimal is real (detachment) and it is a very dangerous place to be because isolation is where the end of that road leads and to complete despair. I had to begin EMDR work, it has been a life saver and completely fast forwarded my healing back into the light. My suggestion is for anyone with PTDS go get true biological brain healing help with EMDR Therapy. If she loves herself enough and can find it within herself to know she IS worth it still you will be amazed and she will be back for real. EMDR eliminates the cycle of hell for the PTSD victim it actually re-wires the brain to distance from the trauma instead of loved ones. God is on our side even though we as PTSD trauma victims think he is not, pray for Raphael and Michael to help heal her brain as she sleeps and during treatment. God Bless to all and I hope you all seek out EMDR! it is fast and you don't have to re-live the trauma!!! Have courage to face the problem and get away from the trauma that wanted to take you over to begin with! You survived it! You GOT THIS!!!! IF I DO YOU DO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GOD KEEP YOU SAFE
  25. mr_smith_v2

    mr_smith_v2 Active Member

    It is good to know that my thought that it is PTSD taking over my fiancee (ex?) and causing her strange actions of cheating and bailing out saying she can't be in a long term relationship / doesn't want kids / etc. I knew those things were not really her. How do you keep yourself from acting on the "PTSD personality" emotional feelings and stances and keep yourself acting on who you know you actually are? This is the biggest battle it seems to keep focused on who you really are vs who you feel you are with the PTSD. I know when I take certain pain medications that my personality changes into a completely different person and I had a hell of a time trying to act myself vs the self I was feeling. Control is already a problem with PTSD sufferers, but how do you do it so you don't bail out and cheat and do things you wouldn't normally do but are feeling like you want to or need to do?
  26. mr_smith_v2

    mr_smith_v2 Active Member

    Hey buddy. We have more in common than I thought. My fiancee has done some things like this and is currently doing her biggest freak out and destructiveness yet in 4 years. She feels worthless and like stepping out with new people is her way of escaping her reality. Although that logically cannot persist forever. There is no way to self sustain a life without a job, vehicle, and infinite amounts of new people. The new people then becomes the norm that has to be escaped.

    If/when your partner comes back, definitely work on conversations of who they really are and what the PTSD makes them feel like they are and how to get better open communication. I have this plan as well. Perhaps we can help each other out with this strange and terrifying type scenario. I feel this is a part of PTSD relationships that doesn't get addressed other than the comments of "cheating, leave them" type replies. There HAS to be ways of helping this scenario not play out as it does.

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