National Eating Disorders Association

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relapse has lead to marital problem

Hi there my wife of 12 years was diagnosed with anorexia 7 years ago. She went through outpatient services for about a year and came out much better. I went to workshops with her mom and different concealing sessions to learn how I could help best. Now 6 years later I had been noticing signs of a relapse. I should have talked about it with her sooner but I was afraid to push her away. Finally things got really bad 3 days ago when I caught her cheating on me. In that moment she came out and told me that she was relapsing and she felt lost and not special to me. Even though I have always gone out of my way to let her know how much I love her. I want to help her get through this again but I am just so hurt. Is it a good possibility that the relapse contributed to the infidelity or is it just an excuse. Please help me understand this someone

Hope to help!

Hello! Thank you so much for your post and trusting us with your situation.

I am so sorry to hear you discuss your recent pain due to your wife's infidelity. That is truly an emotional situation and I hope that you have been able to seek and find support in others around you during this time. Please remember that although your wife is ill with an ED it is important to make sure your emotional needs are also met and that you have support through this.

Have you suggested to your wife to see a therapist together so you two can discuss her relapse and marital struggles? I think it would best to have a professional moderate the discussion as to how you both have experienced this situation as well as seek professional advice on how to best restore your relationship if that is what you need.

It is true that during times when people are ill with an ED that we are not properly thinking and that we need help to stay safe. Even so, the pain you have experienced due to your wife's actions are still very real and very important. There are never one explanation to any given situation, but your love for your wife is real and has meaning. I can tell you love her dearly.

Please let me know if you have any questions! Please take care!