Husband Asks Sick Wife For Her Permission To ‘Move On’ With Someone Else After She Passes — So She Divorces Him

She pointed out that she'd rather not have such a morbid conversation with her husband while dying when all she wants is comfort and support.

upset couple sitting on opposite ends of couch Andrii Zastrozhnov / Shutterstock

A woman is questioning whether she's being too sensitive after hearing how her husband views their marriage now that she's terminally ill. 

Posting to the subreddit r/AITAH, she claimed that despite thinking her marriage was more than good, her husband's attitude since she's gotten sick has made her question their relationship.

She divorced her husband after he asked for permission to 'move on' with someone else after her death.

In her Reddit post, she explained that she and her husband have been married for quite some time. Still, the foundation of their relationship suddenly changed after she was diagnosed with Stage 3 cancer. Her chances of getting better are rather slim, and she was told by doctors that there's a decent chance she may die within the next five years.


"The problem is my husband keeps asking if I die, will I want him to move on? Does he have my blessing to move on? He asked me three times in the past month alone, and as someone who could die, it doesn't exactly lift up my mood," she wrote.

wife divorces husband after he asks for permission to move on with someone else when she diesPhoto: Reddit


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Unfortunately, this seems to be quite common in marriages when one person suddenly falls sick — but mostly for women. According to researchers at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance in the journal Cancer, a woman is six times more likely to be separated or divorced soon after a diagnosis of cancer or multiple sclerosis than if a man in the relationship is the patient. 

In an interview with Today, Susan McDaniel, a family psychologist, explained that an illness often has lasting effects on the gender roles that exist within a marriage. Usually, women are seen as the caretakers and ones responsible for keeping the home afloat. However, if she gets sick, the change in dynamics can be overwhelming.

"If suddenly her support is not there — in fact, she needs him to take care of her in that same way — it’s very destabilizing, and it depends on people’s flexibility," she told the publication. "These kinds of crises really rock families and couples… you can work it through, but it helps to have support and guidance and somebody to say that the way they’re feeling makes sense."


wife divorces husband after he asks permission to move on with someone else when she diesPhoto: Reddit

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As the Redditor pointed out, she's already facing the prospect of death, which is incredibly scary and daunting. With only a few years to live, she doesn't want to think about her husband finding companionship with another woman. All she wants is support from her husband and the last few years of her life to be filled with love, compassion, and joy. 


Instead of bringing up a rather dark conversation, reminding his wife that she will soon be gone, he should try making her last moments worthwhile and unforgettable.

She pointed out that she knows her husband loves her and is grieving, but she just doesn't want to think about a future that she will not be a part of. She finally confronted her husband and told him that she was tired of him asking and that it felt as if he were eager for her to die. 

She decided the best plan of action would be to divorce him because she'd rather live out her days on her own instead of beside a man who is counting down the days until she's gone.

People in the comments agreed that her husband was being too presumptuous on the topic.

"I have the strange feeling he is always looking for someone else to not be alone! He is worried about his future situation without you and not about spending time with you until the end. It's really selfish, and I completely understand your feelings," one Reddit user wrote. "I'm sorry about your illness and sorry that you had such a selfish husband."


Another user added, "You're dying, and you're not feeling supported. Your feelings matter the most here. Time will also tell. Perhaps he will move on in a few months with someone else."

Personally, if my spouse is sick or on the brink of death, the last thing I would ever be thinking about is my potential partner once they're no longer here. It doesn't do much for the person who's already fearful of dying, and it doesn't do justice to the precious time left together. 

man supporting his sad wife Denys Demianchuk / Shutterstock


It's understandable that both people would worry about the future, especially those who will still live long after their spouse has departed.

However, those are conversations and decisions that can be made once the immediate needs and support have been given to a terminally ill partner. Rushing into anything will solve nothing, and thinking about the future when the present is right here should be the top priority.

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.