He left me for mistress hours af­ter Mum died!

I’d just lost my beloved mum, when my hubby made a shock­ing con­fes­sion

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Ni­cola Fun­nell, 44, Heath­field, East Sussex

Lean­ing to­wards my mum’s wheel­chair, I planted a good­bye kiss on her cheek.

‘Great to see you look­ing so happy again,’ she smiled.

Glanc­ing at my new bloke Ian Roberts, then 40, I had to agree.

It was au­tumn 2011, and I’d been re­ally ex­cited to in­tro­duce my lovely mum Mar­ion, 74, to Ian.

We’d been dat­ing for a few months and I’d al­ready asked him to move in.

I hadn’t felt all that sure at first, though.

On our first date, Ian had ad­mit­ted cheat­ing in a pre­vi­ous re­la­tion­ship.

‘I’d never do it again,’ he’d said.

For me, a sin­gle mum to a son and a daugh­ter, it was a red flag.

But Ian had per­sisted, un­til I’d even­tu­ally agreed to a sec­ond date, and the spark had been un­de­ni­able.

Now it meant so much to have my mum’s seal of ap­proval.

While her age had caught up with her re­cently, she was as funny and sharp­wit­ted as ever.

Not long af­ter, I was di­ag­nosed with fi­bromyal­gia – a long-term con­di­tion that causes pain all over the body – af­ter strug­gling with se­vere mus­cle dis­com­fort.

The med­i­ca­tion, and my in­abil­ity to do ex­er­cise, meant my weight bal­looned.

But Ian was so sup­port­ive. He couldn’t do enough for me, sort­ing out my med­i­ca­tion, cook­ing meals. He was great with Mum, too, help­ing her and my dad with odd jobs or mow­ing their lawn. In June 2013, Ian and I mar­ried and it was the hap­pi­est day of my life. ‘You look so happy,’ Mum had whis­pered, as we posed for pic­tures.

Over the fol­low­ing four years, Ian and I had our ups and downs, but we were in love. Then, in Fe­bru­ary 2017, Mum went to hos­pi­tal with sus­pected gall stones. But fur­ther tests re­vealed she had pan­cre­atic cancer. Sit­ting in the ex­am­i­na­tion room, we were all speech­less. Then we found out that she had only months to live.

I strug­gled to imag­ine my life with­out my mum.

‘Don’t worry,’ I said, shak­ily. ‘I’ll look af­ter you.’

When I got home later that evening, I was in tears.

‘What’s the mat­ter, love?’ Ian asked.

‘Mum’s dy­ing,’ I sobbed. Ian gave me a hug, re­as­sured me that ev­ery­thing would be OK.

Mum’s cancer pro­gressed quickly, she lost weight and be­came frail.

Pal­lia­tive care was her only op­tion.

For the next few months,

Dad, my sis­ter and I spent most evenings at Mum’s bed­side in Con­quest Hos­pi­tal, near Hast­ings.

Ian kept the house go­ing, fer­ry­ing the girls around.

At night, I’d get home ex­hausted and weepy and he’d have food on the ta­ble.

By July, Mum was barely con­scious, dosed up on pain med­i­ca­tion.

When my sis­ter rang in the early hours of 24 July 2017, I knew straight­away.

‘She’s gone,’ she told me.

I im­me­di­ately called Ian on his night shift, de­liv­er­ing for a bak­ery, and he hur­ried home.

But, even through my grief, I no­ticed that he was oddly dis­tant. Then my dad and sis­ter ar­rived to take me to see Mum, to say good­bye.

Only, as I was leav­ing, Ian picked a fight with me.

‘Why are your fam­ily walk­ing in as if they own the place?’ he snapped.

‘Mum has just died,’ I said, aghast. ‘I told them they could come straight in.’

I was too low to worry about his foul mood.

The next day, I went into my job at a care company to or­gan­ise com­pas­sion­ate leave.

On the way home, my daugh­ter called me.

‘Ian’s pack­ing all his things,’ she gab­bled. ‘He says he’s leav­ing.’ What? Stunned, I des­per­ately tried to call Ian, but he wouldn’t pick up.

Fi­nally, I got hold of him.

‘Where are you go­ing?’ I asked, feeling fu­ri­ous.

‘I’m not happy,’ Ian de­clared. ‘I’m leav­ing you.’ Is this a sick joke?

A day ear­lier, I’d lost Mum. Now, my hus­band was leav­ing me, too.

I got home to find Ian’s side of the wardrobe empty.

My girls tried to com­fort me, but I was in­con­solable.

I had no idea where he’d gone or why he’d left me.

Plan­ning Mum’s fu­neral as my mar­riage crum­bled gave me panic at­tacks.

And, when Ian mes­saged one evening say­ing he wouldn’t be com­ing to pay his re­spects, it was like a knife through my heart. I was shocked. Things hadn’t been the best be­tween us, but I’d been fo­cused on Mum. I thought he’d un­der­stood.

At Mum’s fu­neral, peo­ple won­dered where Ian was, but I was too up­set to care.

Stand­ing in the church with­out my hus­band at my side, I’d never felt so lonely.

A few weeks on, Ian agreed to meet at a pub to talk.

And I fi­nally found out why he’d upped and left.

‘I’ve met some­one else,’ Ian told me bluntly.

I sat there, stunned, as he nursed his pint telling me how he’d got chat­ting to an old flame on Face­book.

And he’d been se­cretly see­ing her for six months. My stom­ach dropped. The en­tire time I was nurs­ing my dy­ing mother, he was be­tray­ing me.

‘We’re in love,’ Ian said. ‘I’m sorry, Ni­cola.’

Too an­gry to speak, I stood up and walked out.

I cursed my­self for not ditch­ing him on our first date when he’d ad­mit­ted cheat­ing.

I’m sav­ing for a di­vorce now. Ian and his new woman are still to­gether.

I’m just glad Mum isn’t here to see what Ian’s done. Her heart would break.

She’d be proud now, though. I’ve picked my­self up and met some­one else.

I’ve even lost 9st af­ter hav­ing a gas­tric sleeve op.

In a funny way, Ian did me a favour. With­out that cheat­ing rat, I’m hap­pier than I’ve been in years.

I was too low to worry about his foul mood

Mum only had months to live

Me and Ian on our wed­ding day

Ian and I had our ups and downs but were in love...

Me to­day: hap­pier than I’ve been in years

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