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'Wife walked out on me and my daughter two years ago. Now she returned and wants to be family.' MAJOR UPDATE

'Wife walked out on me and my daughter two years ago. Now she returned and wants to be family.' MAJOR UPDATE


When a partner abandons you and tries to waltz back in, it's going to bring up some major feelings.

"Wife walked out on me and my daughter two years ago, now she returned and wants to be a family again."

Two years ago, my wife pulled the classic "I'm going to buy some smokes" and just disappeared. She suffered from depression and I did my best to take the load off her and help her get the help she needed. She would keep saying how she was sick of everything, even our daughter, and again I would give her space and try to accommodate every request.

Then she just disappeared, took some of her stuff and she was just gone. I had gone picking up out daughter at school after work and after we came home she was gone. Police was involved, but after three days she called her mother saying she was fine but wished for us to not look for her or contact her.

It was hard. Working, raising our daughter as a single father, trying to explain her why mom was gone and not knowing what to say when she asked if mommy would ever be back. At the same time I appreciated the strong bond I built with my daughter, and that helped a lot.

I never looked into or filed for divorce, but around last year' summer I met a woman, Jill, and we become started an on and off relationship. She knows all about my situation and although we are currently on break, she is still a big help and established a rapport with my daughter as an aunt figure. I was thinking of getting the ball rolling for divorce when two weeks ago my wife returned.

Completely apologetic, but she also seemed to have become a new person entirely: upbeat, positive, almost with a "glow" to herself. She popped back in with a "Hey guys, what did I miss?" while after our initial shock, my daughter and I became diffident. In the last days my daughter has warmed up to her, but I didn't.

She tried to initiate intimacy after two nights, but I told her I was not comfortable about it and asked her to move to the guest room, which she did saying she completely understands. I asked her where she's been the last years, and she pretty much toured around the world (I don't even know with what money) and "found herself".

I told her pretty bluntly that I was looking for divorce and that there's already someone else, she said she completely understands if I h*te her now (which I don't) but maybe I can give her a chance to make it up to us. I am torn. I still have feelings for her, and I'm glad my daughter got her mother back, but how can I trust her to not just walk out on us? What I am supposed to do with Jill?

"Thanks for everything but my wife is back, so long and thanks for the fish?" I don't know where to put my head anymore.

The internet had a lot to say in response.

jgyimesi wrote:

Mental health is no joke. Mental health does not absolve you of your actions and the consequences associated with them. Two years is a long time. It’s a lifetime for your child. I would ask yourself the following questions:

What stops this from happening again?

What changed ? “Finding yourself” is not a good enough answer.

You deserve to enjoy life and if you found a partner, her life is important to, for both of you.

The answer is person, however if it were me, I would hope she has a relationship with her child, but I would never accept her back and try to reignite a family. You deserve more and deserve better.

MysteriousMaximum88 wrote:

This would be a hard No. I wouldn't let her live in my house.

Veronika916 wrote:

What a damn mess. We can say anything we like, but at the end of the day only you can decide what's best for your daughter and you. Personally, I'd go for divorce and use your wife's good intentions to build a good co-parenting relationship, assuming she won't pull her little stunt again.

You mentioned that your relationship with Jill is on and off and you are currently "on break," but it seems she never stopped being a mother figure for your daughter. This alone makes her a 100 times better choice than your wife, who could likely walk out at the first difficulty.

ThatWideLife wrote:

I really don't find this story to be real whatsoever. If the mother of your child walked out you absolutely would've filed for full custody of your daughter at a minimum. And the part of her just popping in saying "What did I miss?" again seems so unbelievable. If the story is true, which I doubt, you should probably file for divorce and back child support. Clearly she has money if she can travel the world.

A week later, OP shared an update.

Hello people. I have read your comments even though I replied very little, but I appreciate your advice and insight. I have an update but I'm afraid it will be a bit disappointing. My MIL has agreed to take my soon to be ex-wife in, and she moved out without making a fuss. She says she understands but would like to keep a relationship with our daughter.

I let her know I am pursuing a divorce, and she took it seemingly well. Her only request is that I don't bar her from our daughter. She gave me an account of what she's been up to the last couple of years, I am not sure whenever to believe her or not and at this point I don't care. I have contacted a lawyer and we are looking into a smooth and quick divorce.

If my ex wife keeps being so cooperative, I think she could have visitation rights, but I am not sure about custody. Perhaps if she demonstrates she can be a safe parent in the future. Jill and I are not back together. She proposed rekindling our relationship, but right now my priority is my daughter and sorting out my affairs and the divorce.

Jill has agreed to give me time, but also asked me to let her know my choice in a reasonable amount of time because she really wants to be with me and my daughter, but neither she can wait forever. I agreed with her. Now, we get by day by day.


Jill is NOT my soon to be ex-wife. She's the woman I had a relationship with after my wife abandoned us and helped me with my daughter.

The comments kept coming in.

derekthorne wrote:

Why are you on and off with Jill? If you like being with her, then be with her. Your ex should NOT be part of that equation.

OP responded:

It's not about my ex, it's that my daughter is the priority and I feel I can't give 100% to a romantic partner. Jill understands this, but right now I can't focus on a relationship.

FullyAdjustableFunk wrote:

Man that’s a hell of story. I read your original post and it really got to me. What did your MIL have to say about all of this?

OP responded:

Well, it's her daughter, she loves her even though she is ashamed of her actions.

Veronika9216 wrote:

Happy to hear you are doing well. Take your time, but in my opinion losing Jill would be a mistake you will end up regretting. She seems very undestanding of your situation and willing to support you in this trying time.

OP responded:

I don't know. Right now the priority is my daughter. Of course Jill can keep her rapport with her, but I don't think this is the moment for a relationship.

GuyWhoKnowsMoreThanU wrote:

Glad you didn't touch your STBX and are divorcing her. Honestly I would have been filing for divorce on abandonment when she was gone a year, I can't even fathom letting her back int he house. Letting someone as unstable as her have ANY form of custody or unsupervised visitation is NUTS, especially given what she says she's been doing with no sign of HOW she did it.

"Flight risk" comes to mind. Check the stats, non-custodial moms are like two-three times more likely to kidnap a child than non-custodial dads.

And dude...don't blow it with Jill.

Sources: Reddit
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