He Was an Attorney and a ‘Fantastic Father’ but It Wasn’t Enough and She’s Glad to Be Rid of Him

London, England–The woman describes her late husband as being a “fantastic father,” and he was also an attorney, but somehow he didn’t contribute enough to the family to meet her needs. Now that he’s dead and she has his life insurance money, she says she’s happier without him. What a sweetheart.

The story is below–thanks to Patrick, a reader, for sending it.

I”m happier since he died
The sudden death of her carefree husband left a reader in shock. Then she found that, financially and emotionally, life was easier
The Times (UK)

When Stephen died it was the speed of it all that stunned me at first. He”d been feeling tired and generally under the weather and I”d told him to see the GP, convinced that he had diplomatic flu (he was fed up at work). He was referred for further investigation immediately, which should have made us suspicious, but it took talk of an operation to make us realise that this was serious.

In the three weeks from his first visit to the doctor until the night he died, we didn”t face the possibility of his cancer being terminal, reassuring each other that something could be done. We were scared, but more of the treatment that lay ahead and how it would disrupt our lives before everything got back on track than fear that he would die.

Our families and several friends were in the house that night, as they had been regularly once we told them that Stephen was ill. His brother was helping him upstairs for a lie-down when Stephen called to me so urgently and desperately that I dropped the baby in my mum”s lap and ran to him. He just died there, at the bottom of the stairs, with his brother and me holding him.

You don”t expect someone to die at 30; it seemed totally unreal, telling our three-year-old daughter that Daddy had gone to heaven. Our son was still a baby and our family and friends, who were equally shocked, looked after everything for me to begin with. My grief was genuine, as was the shock. But the greatest shock of all soon followed, so shocking that I find it hard to write: I now prefer life without him.

Stephen and I met at university. Despite being totally different, we were inseparable instantly. I adored his relaxed attitude to life (I”ve always been a bit of a control freak). We worked well together, me getting him to his lectures, him persuading me that student life involved more than just studying. He proposed the day we graduated and we decided to get married the next summer, which meant a lot of organising. Suddenly we were doing very grown-up things. Or rather, I was, and Stephen was hovering in the background.

I had assumed that Stephen would become much more focused once we began working. I was doing my doctorate as well as working, but Stephen, a lawyer, never felt that he should help out more or focus on his career. His sick record (usually because of hangovers) was dreadful. He got annoyed when the first firm he worked in didn”t offer him a partnership. He moved to another one; two years later the same thing happened. He couldn”t grasp the connection between still living like a student and not being taken seriously. Perhaps I colluded in this, as it was easier for me to manage the finances and organise things. We were delighted when I became pregnant. He was a fantastic father to our children and still irresistible to me most of the time, except when I was too tired to appreciate a spontaneous bottle of champagne. When he died I thought it was the end of the world.

Then the second shock came: I realised how comfortable we now were financially. The mortgage was paid off instantly and Stephen”s pension kicked in. I”d had both of us insured to the hilt, and we now had a lot of money in the bank…

Read the full story here.

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