Telling a spouse you only have months to live is one of the hardest conversations you’ll ever have to have with a loved one.
But in a recent post on online forum Reddit, one man admitted he’s considering keeping the news secret from his wife after discovering he has between 12 and 16 months to live.
The 31-year-old husband, who didn’t reveal what his condition is, said he didn’t want his last year “to be plagued with an impending doom”.
“For the past 15 years, I’ve been dealing with a medical condition that requires constant medication and consistent doctor’s visits,” he wrote in his post.
But during a recent visit, the man said he found out the condition worsened and he has roughly between 12 and 16 months live.
“I had always been projected to live until 50-60ish, however, a recent complication has cut that down to 12 months, 16 at best. In about 10 months, my condition should start getting a lot worse. After 12 months, I’ll essentially be living in the hospital,” he added.
“I am married of 4 years (no kids). I haven’t had the heart to tell my wife the news. I don’t even know how. We always knew I’d die younger than I wanted to, but we never expected it to be this soon.”
The man then revealed rather than telling his wife immediately he plans on living abroad with her for a year and breaking the news at the end of their trip.
“My wife and I have always talked about living abroad somewhere, maybe Australia, but we’ve never found the time or money to do so. I’ve been saving up to go to graduate school, however, I don’t see much point in that now,” he went on.
“So here’s my idea: take some of that money, and take my wife to Australia for a few months, and enjoy the time together. When we get back, or maybe towards the end of it, I will break the news to her. I just wouldn’t want the trip to be ruined for us by constant reminders of me dying.”
Many users were quick to comment, with the majority urging him to tell his wife.
“As the wife of a husband who is also dying, please, please tell her. She’ll never forgive you if you don’t,” one commentator wrote.
Another added: “Yes. Tell her. That will make it easier. She thinks she has years yet. Do you really think it will be easier for her to have it sprung on her that it was really only months? I go with my husband to his appointments because he knows I feel better knowing what is happening to him. Please, please tell her.”
However, some users did agree with the man, with one writing: “… he wants to be able to spend the last few months of his life on his terms enjoying himself. He knows her well enough to know that if he breaks the news now the last 12 months will be a prolonged experience.”