AIBU to be upset that DH doesn't want me to go back to work? :(

(192 Posts)
doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 11:45:59

Sorry if this is a bit confused and rambling, I'm too depressed to be coherent and my brain's stopped working after long debates with DH.

So I'd decided to retrain and go back to work this year after 5 years away. Work is TV. Being in a technical/creative role I need to catch up. I was going to pay for the training with my royalties from past work (and the rest with a bursary). Then I would try for a fairly stable, senior job, i.e. not involving travel or late hours (well not too many). Pay would have been decent enough but nowhere close to DH's. But for the 5 days of the course I'd need childcare so I needed to clear it with DH. And he basically said No.

Obviously not in so many words. But he threw enough spanners in the works, asked enough questions to make it impossible for me. In points:
(1) the course is too expensive and a job is not guaranteed without experience
(2) who will pick up/drop off the kids if I have to work in Central London (DH will not, he drives/commutes out of town daily and says the school drop off take a huge chunk of his time)
(3) I had a hard enough time finding work before kids
(4) I'll find it hard balancing work and kids
(5) and besides we had decided that I would be a SAHM doing blogging, that too once a week

After much debate, he conceded I could try for a very local, 2 times a week non-taxing job like temping or admin or shop asst. With all due respect to these jobs, I have 17 years of experience, 2 degrees and expensive training, not to mention bags of talent (so I'm told). Surely I can find better paid/more satisfying work?

And why do I want to work? Because I need the creative outlet, am good at it, I miss it and finally I really need the economic independence. I hate having to beg for/justify every penny I spend just because I didn't earn it.

We have 2 DCs about to turn 5 and 2 next month. One in reception, another just started day nursery 2 mornings/wk.

Sugarice Wed 23-Jan-13 11:51:54

You have every right to be upset that he's attempting to block you doing what you want.

Does he keep a tight rein on the finances by any chance and keeps an eye on what you spend?

ShamyFarrahCooper Wed 23-Jan-13 11:52:21

After much debate, he conceded I could try for a very local...

How very generous of him. So you've been a SAHM for 5 years and he is not willing to give you ANY support whatsoever, even though you being a SAHM has enabled him to progress his career?

You do not need his permission. He has effectively just told you, you & your career are not as important as him & his.

I hate having to beg for/justify every penny I spend just because I didn't earn it.

I think this is your reason from him. He wants you to justify every penny. He doesn't want you to have control of your own finances.

Guiltypleasures001 Wed 23-Jan-13 11:54:49

HI Double

The end of your post said it all for me hun, the having to beg and justify every penny you need because YOU dont earn it. For me this is about him losing control of you and specifically the control he has over you through money.

You know what all I want to say is this..You have got all these brilliant qualifications, you are obviously intelligent capable thoughtful and most probably quite how powered in your work and previous life to him.

Think back and see if you can pin point when he started excercising control over you, was it having the kids, how was he about your job and sucesses in the beginning?

This is a long shot but the thought of you being a threat to him and his idea of what a wife.woman should be doing I think are in evidence here. You either fight for the freedom you once had and for the woman you were. Or you bow down to someone who is little by little taking away your autonomy over your whole life.


willyoulistentome Wed 23-Jan-13 11:56:22

I would LOVE it if my DH didn't want me to work....( and could keep me in the manner...)..

PoppyWearer Wed 23-Jan-13 11:57:18

Is it ok if I lurk sympathetically? Am in a very similar situation except my DH hasn't said no as such, just keeps saying that he wants me to run my own business or do something part time and local, that fits around the school runs. hmm

Crinkle77 Wed 23-Jan-13 11:58:25

So he says you will find it hard balancng work and kids? They're his kids too!

Sugarice Wed 23-Jan-13 11:59:17

Would you start to think about re-training without his support?

Guiltypleasures001 Wed 23-Jan-13 11:59:21

Hi Poppy start a thread hun, because just from that short post he is thinking of logistics to school runs and kids being sick and needed to be picked up.

if you give more detail we can help you more. smile

Bonsoir Wed 23-Jan-13 12:01:39

To be fair to your DH, it doesn't sound as if your logistics are very workable.

Narked Wed 23-Jan-13 12:03:07

HA! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

No, seriously. You both have DC. You share responsibility for them. Why not suggest he become a SAHD whilst you return to study. And he could try a little minimum wage work to get him out of the house.

ShamyFarrahCooper Wed 23-Jan-13 12:03:45

What is wrong with the OP's logistics? He can't help with school/nursery drop offs for one week?

Does he have a special opt out card he can pull out for things he doesn't want to do?

WilsonFrickett Wed 23-Jan-13 12:04:26

That's nice of him, you'll love admin hmm

Clearly YANBU. He is being controlling. The question is, what do you do about it?

Was it a 'proper' discussion or did it turn into a row? Is it worth bringing it up again for more discussion? Can someone else do your 5 days childcare? Are any of his points valid?

It sounds like he's comparing your old job with your new life, but it sounds like you are trying to get a more stable role, has he taken that into account?

I'm trying desperately to be constructive here, can you tell? Basically, is there room for negotiation?

Narked Wed 23-Jan-13 12:04:54

PLEASE stop the hunning.

HecateWhoopass Wed 23-Jan-13 12:05:58

Well, it's not unreasonable to ask such questions.

Answer them.

If my husband wanted to do something and I could see problems, I would likely ask him and how will X work and what will we do about y...

and I would expect him to have solutions. Or go away and think about it and come back and say ok, this is how it can work. We can do this, I can do this, you can change this, I will take over this, you will do this before heading off...

So make a list of the problems he threw at you and solve them.

Lovelygoldboots Wed 23-Jan-13 12:06:34

He needs to support your decision and it will be financially better for you all in the long run. He is being unreasonable. What if he could not work, if you had a well paid job then you may end up being the breadwinner. What you are proposing is securing all your futures. You have to go for it.

MarilynValentine Wed 23-Jan-13 12:08:43

Christ Almighty who the fuck does he think he is? King of the world? The Father-Provider-Autocrat-Tyrant who has deigned to inform you what you may and may not do?

You need to retrain. You are an individual, you want to work, to feel that level of autonomy again. To earn your own money.

Who knows, in the future you may need to fall back on it.

But seriously, you are a partnership. He needs to support you. It's about give and take. And plans/feelings change.

Don't let this one go.

Narked Wed 23-Jan-13 12:09:04

5 days. The OP wants 5 days. For a course.

EvenIfYouSeeAPoppy Wed 23-Jan-13 12:09:35

Bonsoir, why are they Double's logistics and not Double's and MrDouble's logistics? <bemused>

Double, he's trying to:

a) keep you down, stop you becoming 'more successful' than him
b) keep the current domestic and logistical ease of his life in place

It sounds like he's financially controlling too. It sounds as if he considers himself more important than you 'because he brings in the money' and wants to keep that in place.

Can you say 'look, this is really important to me, these are both our kids, let's work out a way together to make the logistics work'? Reminding him of all you've done to facilitate his career?

If he still won't budge - well, for me I think that would be a dealbreaker tbh.

Narked grin

Omnishambolic Wed 23-Jan-13 12:09:55

Have I missed something here? I assumed you were saying it was a 5-day per week course for a certain period of time - but actually, it's a course for five days FULL STOP? And you can't do it because of the logistics he says? Wow. He really will say anything to stop you going back to work, won't he.

Have you explained to him just how much you need this to stop you going nuts at home?

Many people can and do cope with both partners working, you can get childcare to fit around your job. Yes it can be difficult balancing everything but neither are you going to find it easy at home if you want to be working, especially in a couple of years when both children are at school during the day.

Do you still have contacts in your old job? Can you talk to them about opportunities so you can be realistic about the market at the moment, about how easy it will be to find the kind of role you're after, and then speak to "D"H again?

littleducks Wed 23-Jan-13 12:10:13

DH hates me working. He liked it when I did a few hrs onsaturday and he got to chill with preschool kids. I now do a healthcare course with working placements. It is tiring, it is a bit of a juggle, you do need to organise logistics.

However dh 'helps' (or helpfully does his share) he does morning school run 3 days a week when Im in central London. He takes days off in half term when I can't (I get long xmas/easter and summer breaks)

Iceaddict Wed 23-Jan-13 12:10:20

You have a right to work if you want to. Don't let dh control you. I would go insane if I didn't work.

I work part time in my regular job, I go to college and study an advanced diploma in psychotherapy and also see my counselling clients for around 5 hrs a week. My dp is working 200 miles away at the moment and I'm managing with 2 dc's age 2&4. I have an amazing childminder for 3 days a week but I still do all the dropping off/picking up. I see my parents at weekends as they work as well. Dp only has the kids for me to work for 2 hrs a week tops. And when he's away my sister will sit for me for a couple of hours now and again.

What I'm trying to say is, if my dp wanted to he could also think of many reasons why I couldn't do all of the above, but I don't want to stay home without a job. I would not be happy, and your happiness is just as important as every other member of your family. If you can work out a way to do what you want then do it. You're not hurting anyone. Good luck

HeathRobinson Wed 23-Jan-13 12:10:25


I would really go ahead and do this, if I were you. Sounds like you might need the economic independence, let alone the creative outlet.

Family for childcare for the course? Nanny for longer term?

(1) the course is too expensive and a job is not guaranteed without experience

No of course a job is not guaranteed but you deserve a shot.....he must do stuff surely that is expensive. Can you both afford it?? If so then you should do it,

(2) who will pick up/drop off the kids if I have to work in Central London (DH will not, he drives/commutes out of town daily and says the school drop off take a huge chunk of his time)

Is he able to once, twice a week maybe or is it a def no no with work?? It's one thing if his job just doesn't allow it, another if he is being bloody minded. They are his kids as well after all.

(3) I had a hard enough time finding work before kids

Of course but if you don't try you will never know!

(4) I'll find it hard balancing work and kids

Of course, so he will need to step up to the mark a bit more.....again, they aren't just your kids!

(5) and besides we had decided that I would be a SAHM doing blogging, that too once a week

Well, now you have changed your mind which you are perfectly entitled to do.

Sounds like he is terrified it is going to impact on his cozy cushy little life!! You do not need his permission to go out to work, this is 2013!!! ANything can be got round if you want it badly enough. He needs to stop being so selfish, accept you need more in your life than looking after the kids and doing the ocassional blog and sit down with you and work out ways to make this possible. That is what a supportive partner should do.

grobagsforever Wed 23-Jan-13 12:12:17

Staggering. Where do all these stone age men appear from?

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Wed 23-Jan-13 12:12:57

You've given his career 5 years of support. He needs to support you now. The logistics will need to be worked through in due course but many couples both work and manage perfectly well.

SirBoobAlot Wed 23-Jan-13 12:13:39

He does not own you. How dare he tell you that you have his permission to get a shop job locally if you would like to?!

Apply for the training, and find someone other than this arsehole to look after your DCs whilst you do it.

EvenIfYouSeeAPoppy Wed 23-Jan-13 12:14:08


Dh works 45+ hours a week in a responsible, stressful, demanding medical role.

I work 25h a week from home and freelance on the side.

I am a sometime academic. If a great academic job opportunity came up (not going to happen where we're living, but if one did) and I said 'look, I really want to go for this', he would make it happen. He would arrange his work so that we were sharing child commitments fairly. He would take on more of the housework again.

It would make his life more stressful and less easy, but he would do it.

MerylStrop Wed 23-Jan-13 12:14:23

Er, no

This isn't how it works.

You are a partnership. A family. Your DH has supported his family financially whilst they were very young. You have made it possible for his career to continue unfettered by the needs of caring for young children by being, temporarily a SAHM.

He does not get to decide whether or not you can work and in what manner. He does not get to veto you having economic independence. As a partnership you decide what you as a family can manage. There are alternatives ways of tackling the logistics of school runs and childcare.

I suggest you do a little business plan and work out the level of financial risk for your family of doing the course, and suss out the likelihood of getting enough work and the costs of buying in childcare etc.

EuroShagmore Wed 23-Jan-13 12:14:36

What the actual fvk???


Narked Wed 23-Jan-13 12:17:35

His reaction would give me an excellent and pressing reason to pursue the course and get back to working. If this is what he's like after 5 years of you SAH what will he be like after 10?

Joiningthegang Wed 23-Jan-13 12:17:59

What a conplete knob - are you an equal in this partneship or the nanny/maid/cleaner for free.

Sounds like others have said , he is keeping you down - can you ask others to help you out for this 5 day course?

Then get a brilliant job

Then leavr the bastard

ShamyFarrahCooper Wed 23-Jan-13 12:18:28

Basically he sees the care of yours & his children as wummins work and you are going to ruin his life hmm by daring to do something for you, that may have no actual benefit to his life and if fact may make a tiny dent in his working life that equates to about 0.000001% of it.

Jojobump1986 Wed 23-Jan-13 12:18:56

Is it just one conversation you've had about it? My DH would get v freaked out if I announced I wanted to start working full-time if he thought we had a different plan. His first reaction would be to question how things would work but he just gets a bit scared by change. He'd start being more supportive after a day or 2. Maybe your DH is like mine... <Benefit of the doubt!>

NomNomDePlumPudding Wed 23-Jan-13 12:20:41

he's not entitled to stop you from returning to work if that's what you want to do. he's a cock if you have to justify every expenditure to him. he is as responsible for the day to day care of his children as you are, and that includes the inconvenience of taking them to school.

he sounds like an arse, tbh.

XiCi Wed 23-Jan-13 12:20:46

YANBU. It sounds like you are being bullied by your DH. He is thinking entirely of himself and dismissing your needs entirely.
Sit down and think of solutions to all of the problems he has come up with. Ask him why he is unable to support you on this course for 5 days. Its not much to ask really is it. This sort of basic level support really is the minimum you'd expect from a loving relationship.
Don't back down if this is what you want. You've already been out of the loop for 5 years and its so hard to get your career back on track after long periods away. If you let him scupper this it could be the end of your career you've worked so hard for and you'll only feel resentful.

cory Wed 23-Jan-13 12:21:21

As long as your family runs on the assumption that he has to be allowed to be the main breadwinner without hindrance and your work has to fit around you, it is his pension that is building up, his old age that is provided for etc etc. If anything happens to him, you are in the shit.

I think you need to sit him down and talk about the longterm implications of totally sacrificing your career for his. What will happen when the children are grown up and you are stuck for 20 years or so in a boring low paid part time job? What will happen when you retire? What will happen if he dies before you? What will happen if he loses his job?

To me, the only reasonable set-up in these uncertain times seems one where couples take on fluctuating roles to ensure that both have futures that are secure as possible. I was a SAHM for several years, losing a lot of potential income. Dh then compensated for that by taking over more of the household duties as the dc grew so that I could build up my qualifications. Now dh has gone for promotion (following the threat of redundancy) and it's my turn to step in again. Even during the years I was a SAHM dh used his annual leave to enable me to attend conferences that would keep me in touch with my career.

13Iggis Wed 23-Jan-13 12:21:24

I once worked full-time whilst dh was sahd. I have to say it was a brilliant arrangement from my point of view - when I needed to work late I did, when I needed to go in early I could, I never had to sort out kids in the morning, get them dressed and out to a childminder etc.
Many men, including your dh, is currently benefitting from this type of arrangement. Of course he'd prefer you not to work - makes his life much harder if you do! But does he have the right to stop you? Of course not Does he want you to resent him in later years?

Joiningthegang Wed 23-Jan-13 12:23:56

And what's this about permission? I think agreement is required in some way but your use o the word permission is scary

zzzzz Wed 23-Jan-13 12:28:56

Get local job.
Earn money for course and childcare.
Get job.
Get au pair or local impoverished Mum to pick up and drop/cover sickness.
Tell husband he is a jerk and needs to up his game.

You can organise all this yourself, you don't need his help or ask permission.
If you don't like explaining where you spend your money stop doing it.

It would have been nice if he could have helped, I would think reasonable to expect but personally. Would just get on worth it and shame the bastard.

diddl Wed 23-Jan-13 12:30:34

OK, so if he won´t help with childcare for the course-are there any other options?

Family/friend/neighbour/childminder/nanny/nanny share?

I´d get the course done first & then sort out necessary child care for an actual job!

ImNotCute Wed 23-Jan-13 12:30:51

I can understand him having reservations as he's used to a fairly comfortable way of parenting, where you are always there to sort the kids out.

BUT lots of people manage with both parents working. Is he usually reasonable? Perhaps he'll realise he's being unfair when he's had a chance to think more?

You should definitely have a go at getting back into your career if it's important to you, and he should support that.

DoItToJulia Wed 23-Jan-13 12:34:12

Op, do you have any RL support? It sounds like you need some.

All of the other posters are right. This is very controlling behaviour that is going to drive you to distraction, and possibly borders abuse.

You need to regain control, which is easier said tHan done. But by allowing him to dictate what you can and can't do sets a dangerous precedent. My advice would be to sort out childcare without his involvement for the 5 day course. It is 5 days. Thereafter you will need to decide how to proceed, but I suspect that if you don't do the course your resentment levels will go through the roof.

The kids will be fine for 5 days.

I really hope you have family or friends that can help, and I urge you to seek their help with this. You don't need to go into loads of detail with them if you don't want to, just ask for their help with childcare, if that sits better.

Good luck, OP, I hope you get to do your course and anything else that you want to do.

Branleuse Wed 23-Jan-13 12:34:49

he sounds like an arse and very controlling. Dont let him block you

MummytoMog Wed 23-Jan-13 12:35:11


It's much easier for me when DH stays at home and looks after the kids and I don't have to worry about how late I hang around the office gossiping and networking but it's important that he keeps in the loop for his work (theatre) and so he works during the day, even when it doesn't quite pay the childcare, to help him get the well paid work and the evening work that does make financial sense. I won't say I'm always good natured about it (see previous threads) but it's what has to happen.

Maybe your DH will come round with some time to mull it over?

Bramshott Wed 23-Jan-13 12:36:02

Can you do the course without his support/childcare? If so, I'd just go for it, and brush off the other queries with "we'll sort that out when we get to it".

FWIW I returned to work in a similarly 'difficult' field (performing arts) after 8 years out recently, and DH was not particularly supportive during the time I was applying for jobs - only seeing the negatives etc.

However, now that I have a new job (18 months ago) he is pretty supportive and helpful. It did take a bit of a mental shift, but for him, I think the reality of job with specific queries ("can you pick the kids up on Thursday?") was much less of a scary prospect that a job in the abstract with unspecified demands and changes!

bollywoodfan Wed 23-Jan-13 12:39:51

Most of your childcare issues could be solved with a childminder I think.
It is the fact that your DH is being so unsupportive that is the real issue. I think you should do as suggested and give a solution to every 'problem' and then TELL him you will be doing it. Maybe he doesn't think you are really serious about it?

Chelvis Wed 23-Jan-13 12:42:43

I'm happy to be a SAHM because my DH views his salary as OUR money. If he didn't see me as having an equal right to use it as I see fit, I would be back in work so quickly the doormat would spin! He sounds selfish and controlling, you need to get in a position that secures your future quickly IMO.

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 12:44:21

sorry I'm in tears here (happy ones) to hear the voices of so many feisty fearless mumsnetters... each reply is very welcome... I'm coming up with some responses... in a min smile

swimmingcat Wed 23-Jan-13 12:48:37

YANBU He should be supporting you, as you have him, over the last 5 years. When does he think you should go back to work? There will be obstacles to overcome in the future too. Or do you think he will keep putting you off?

If you feel ready to retrain and go back, then go for it. There are no guarantees in life and there will always be problems to overcome. Most parents have to juggle and it is difficult, but the end result is your fulfilment and economic independence. That is what you are striving for, and that is a good goal. He should acknowledge that.

I would hate to have to beg/justify every penny I spend, whether I earned it or not.

Snazzynewyear Wed 23-Jan-13 12:50:01

"I hate having to beg for/justify every penny I spend just because I didn't earn it" This is very worrying. If he doesn't want you to work but also doesn't want you having a say in family spending (which is what it should be, not his money) then he is basically saying he wants everything his way and you get no choice and no freedom to make decisions yourself.

To quote something I read on another thread that puts it as briefly as possible 'just because he has a job and a dick does not make him better than you' smile

Bramshott makes a good suggestion. I would make arrangements that get you into the course and then say 'we can work things out as we go'. The course is a stepping stone and you need it (and of course it doesn't guarantee you a job, but if you need it to be in the game, you definitely won't get a job - and your husband knows that...) But if you are paying for it yourself from past earnings, then the obstacle is getting help for childcare for 5 days. Not impossible. Who can you ask? If not family/friends, childminder?

AThingInYourLife Wed 23-Jan-13 12:50:55

"And what's this about permission? I think agreement is required in some way but your use o the word permission is scary"

No agreement is required.

No adult gets to tell another adult that they are not allowed to work.

And only abusive arseholes try it.

Justaoneoff Wed 23-Jan-13 12:52:11

I think that 13Iggis has it right. For the last 5 years, he hasn't had to think once about childcare, and if one of the children is sick and can't go to school - well you do it. And if you are ill, well, you're never too ill to look after your own children. He doesn't even have to consider it, and he likes it that way. He hasn't lost any spontaneity in what he is able to do.

However pressing his job, he is still entitled to 20 days holiday a year, and so he could easily take 5 days to cover your course assuming he had sufficient notice. You say you have the cost of the course covered so how can it be too expensive? The problem is not the course, it's the fact that when / if you go back to work, you both have to think about logistics. That's why he wants you to get a non taxing, school hours job a couple of times a week. It is unlikely to impact him at all, and ultimately your number one job is still going to be the kids, so by default he carries on as he has been doing.

And if you had both decided that you were to be a SAHM, then I don't see why you have to beg for / justify every penny you spend - it surely follows that you both decided that you were going to live on one salary, and as such you trust one another to use the money wisely, and that means you each have equal access to funds, however that is organised. That means it isn't HIS money.

He needs to realise that he is not responsibility free in all of this. If neither of you are genuinely going to be able to do the school run, then you have to ensure that you have a childcare provider who can cover the hours you are away. Then looking at the costs, you see if you can afford it.

To be honest, it is unfair of him to not even allow you to have a crack at getting back into work if you want to do that.

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 12:53:16

@Chelvis lucky you smile (lol at the doormat spinning) I must say that I have loved moments of being an SAHM ....but... its not satisfying because I don't really have full control over choices at home. DH decides meals, food shop, home redecoration (something I love to do and am even consulted on by friends hmm ) and he does it because he doesn't/didn't agree with my choices confused. Luckily he left kids schooling to me, and I managed to get DD into an outstanding school that we didn't really stand a chance at normally.

AThingInYourLife Wed 23-Jan-13 12:56:30

Why do you let this prick run your life?

Snazzynewyear Wed 23-Jan-13 12:57:28

Really, you don't get a say in what you eat, how the house is decorated? hmm DO THAT COURSE. It's well overdue that you got a choice in something.

diddl Wed 23-Jan-13 12:57:57

"DH decides meals, food shop, home redecoration"shock

Oh my goodness!

I am almost speechless.

He really is controlling, isn´t he?

Abitwobblynow Wed 23-Jan-13 12:58:06

I would LOVE it if my DH didn't want me to work....( and could keep me in the manner...).. - that's me, Listen. It got boring, isolating and I got tired of being on committees etc. Who am I, apart from a mother and a housewife?

He then had had an affair, and I discovered that even the above was a lie. No job, no money of my own, nothing to fall back on to.

OP, go on the course, go back to work! Really! He gave you his opinion, now choose to do what you want to do. Good luck.

VeronicaSpeedwell Wed 23-Jan-13 13:01:26

I have nothing useful to add to all the sage advice, but just wanted to say that you absolutely must let your talents shine. It sounds like you've grafted to build yourself the kind of skills and profile many people can never hope to achieve. It's terrible to read about you being told you only have 'permission' to take on work which fits with someone else's agenda. Please don't let him take it all away from you.

Sugarice Wed 23-Jan-13 13:02:22

double Christ, he sounds really controlling sad.

You don't want to spend the rest of your life like this do you?

WilsonFrickett Wed 23-Jan-13 13:02:23

Woah there tiger.

After your post at 12:53 I think returning to work is just one of your issues. He is controlling every aspect of your life, no wonder a return to work threatens him. He will do everything in his power to fuck this up for you OP because he doesn't want you to be independent or have the ability to make a life of your own.

I would tread carefully, start making long term plans and whatever you do, do that course. I think you're going to need it.

LiegeAndLief Wed 23-Jan-13 13:02:23

13iggis has nailed it. Of course he doesn't want you to work. He has got used to this set up where he is in control and can work whatever hours he likes. Life will be less simple for him if you go back to work and he might have to <horror> do drop offs and pick ups etc.

I'm sure a lot of men (and women in the same circumstance) might have similar thoughts. However, a normal decent partner would recognise hat this is important to you and that they are just as responsible for the dc as you are. And support you. And help you work out logistics rather than leaving it all up to you.

Go for it. I wish you luck!

He is a selfish control freak. I think you need to go back to work, not just for the reasons you yourself have given but for financial independence should the worst happen. So many intelligent educated women become trapped by circumstances because they give up their independence. I did, I regret it.

ApocalypseThen Wed 23-Jan-13 13:02:49

I think you know you have to do this, for your own sake, OP.

The fact that you have to beg for money is financial abuse and a good enough reason to work, even if you didn't want to. The fact that you want to, though, means you must do it for your own sake. He has no veto. No veto.

You've given up enough for your family and it's time for your priorities to come to the fore. You may be a mother, but you are also a person and you call the shots for you.

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 13:03:43

@joiningthegang are you an equal in this partneship or the nanny/maid/cleaner for free.

this is kind of how I feel now after this conversation(s)

@Diddl and others who suggested family etc friends - we have no family here (his moved far away to avoid babysitting (no, really)) - friends with small kids won't be free for sustained periods - but I do have a babysitting agency I subscribe to and the kids have mostly been happy with the carers they provided. There is of course a cost involved.

Hang on, small child plucking at elbow grin

LiegeAndLief Wed 23-Jan-13 13:03:51

Massive xpost. Your problems are much bigger than this...

Squitten Wed 23-Jan-13 13:08:39

It sounds to me like you have MUCH bigger issues than whether or not you work.

How do you feel about living with a partner who controls every aspect of your life so completely? He sounds very abusive to me

ApocalypseThen Wed 23-Jan-13 13:08:44

It actually sounds like modern slavery.

OxfordBags Wed 23-Jan-13 13:12:16

Fucking hell, this man is a staggering cunt of epic proportions! No only does his attitude about you working show that as a SAHM, he merely sees you as a vagina that can do housework and childcare, he is so controlling and incapable of respecting you and seeing you as a full human being that doesn't even allow you to do the aspects of that role that are a bit more fun and offer some autonomy and adult, work-style skills (like planning, decorating, etc.). And of course, being a non-person with no worth, you aren't even allowed any say in the money. He treats you like a hateful Victorian father, not a partner and certainly not anything like an equal.

What worries me is that you have at least one daughter - living with a father like this is shaping her future more than school ever will, because it doesn't matter how good a school she goes to if her homelife is training her to be abused and treated like shit on a man's shoe when she's older.

I bet if he had the chance to do a clurse that didn't guarantee a new, better job, but which was a fab opportunity, he'd do it, and not even consult you.

I can't see him bending on this. The abusive, controlling, Master-slave dynamic he's engineered into your relationship totally benefits and pleases him and makes his life work the way that's great for him. Wy should he change or acquiesce? You having needs is bad for him. This is why abusers never change.

Sorry, but you are in a really bad relationship. I am a SAHM and the idea that my DH would even think like this is about as likely as him sprouting wings and flying.

HecateWhoopass Wed 23-Jan-13 13:12:34

"DH decides meals, food shop, home redecoration"

Oh. Wow.

This isn't about logistics is it? Sorry that my previous post assumed a reasonable person who was just asking how things would work.

This isn't that.

What would happen if you just sorted out childcare yourself and did it anyway?

What would he do?

OxfordBags Wed 23-Jan-13 13:13:11

Clurse? Course.

diddl Wed 23-Jan-13 13:13:46

Can you do some redecoration consultancy for money towards the cost of childcare for the course & the course itself?

homeaway Wed 23-Jan-13 13:24:36

If the course is only for five days then can some family just come and stay for that period of time? I see so many red flags here op, your dp sounds very controlling to me and he seems to put his opinion way above yours, the word compromise probably does not exist in his vocubulary. He seems to have total control over your life and I find that quite scary for you . Why is your unpaid job ( cleaner, wife, mother etc.... ) not worth any recognition and why do you have to beg for money ?

I had a nine year break ,but was never denied access to money or made to feel inferior, I did most of the food shopping and we decided what we would eat but that was because oh ate at work smile. When I went back to work it was because I knew that if I didn't at that point it would be too hard to get back in. I am not and never was a high flyer but it was important to me to be able to go back to work.

You need to find a way to do this course not just because it is a way back into your work field but because I feel that there is so much more at stake here.

Omnishambolic Wed 23-Jan-13 13:25:02

Your next post makes it even more important you get to do something you want to do, for once. Does he give you a list of the meals he wants and expect you to go out and buy the ingredients or something?

Even if you don't have family nearby, would anyone be in a position to come and stay for a couple of days and do some of the childcare for you as a one off? I know both sets of grandparents would be happy to help me in a similar situation.

Also I have children of a similar age to you - can you arrange a few playdates to take care of the reception child? I'm sure also that friends with young children would be happy to take care of yours for a morning or an afternoon (I know I would if a friend asked me), it might be a bit patchwork but you could definitely get cover for a week. That's before you even have to start looking into breakfast/after-sch club/additional nursery slots which would cost money.

aquashiv Wed 23-Jan-13 13:28:42

Break it down.
Do the course as long as it not a complete fortune no learning is ever a waste of time it will improve your self esteem and get you back out there.
Then take the others steps as they occur.
Job Seek
Child care. - perhaps source as if he isnt in the equation its amazing how flexible they become when they might start paying through the nose for pick ups when a parent can do it.

FrequentFlyerRandomDent Wed 23-Jan-13 13:31:38

Yanbu. Your post makes me want to take your kids to/from school for 5 days.

5 days! Vs. five years of child minding...

What if you get appendicitis? Will he expect you to do drop off-surgery-pick up?

grobagsforever Wed 23-Jan-13 13:38:51

Fuck, another thread about a controlling shit. I'm so sad for you op. Please listen to the excellent advice being offered and keep talking. And please sign up for the course today!

grobagsforever Wed 23-Jan-13 13:39:41

What frequent said, I'll have your kids for five days.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Wed 23-Jan-13 13:40:20

I suppose (being generous) he might be a bit miffed that you had both agreed you'd be a sahm and now you've changed your mind. My dh probably wouldn't like that either as we both agreed that our dcs wouldn't be put in childcare and as the one who earns the least i became the sahm.

But if this is something you really want to do, and it sounds like it is then he needs to take it seriously.

He also needs to realise that if you are both working or on courses then childcare and pickups are dual responsibility.

A friend of mines dh is unemployed at the moment. She's has managed to get herself a part time job and he is looking after the kids. He now wants to start a course and she was saying that the downside of this would mean SHE would need to find childcare. Why does it always fall to the woman!

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 13:46:21

@zzzzz I like it!
need a bit of work on my confidence but will try to do that!

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 13:48:31

@FrequentFlyerRandomDent Lol at appendicitis - yes he probably would grin

fuckadoodlepoopoo Wed 23-Jan-13 13:50:00

Shit! I just read that if chooses all the decoration, food etc! How did that come about?

Bonsoir Wed 23-Jan-13 13:52:05

It sounds as if you do have some serious decision-making issues in your couple. You need to regain some of the decision-making power - ideally, decisions in a couple should be made jointly, though for practical purposes they are often divided up (normally, the person doing the shopping and cooking will decide what the family eats, taking everyone's tastes and health into consideration).

cory Wed 23-Jan-13 13:52:17

"DH decides meals, food shop, home redecoration (something I love to do and am even consulted on by friends ) and he does it because he doesn't/didn't agree with my choices . "

So what actually happens if you decide to cook something he didn't decide?

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 13:54:02

@grobags thanks for the offer smile I'm sure my kids would love you

As for the control issues - how blind can we women be? - my mom and some friends have been saying for some time there was an issue of him controlling too much of my life. As my self-esteem nose-dived (due to many factors) it just got worse I guess.

My mum, a college prof who's worked her whole life, was aghast when she was visiting and DH refused to eat some porridge I'd made saying it was undercooked and basically chewed me out over it, while I just stood there hanging my head in shame shock then I turned a deaf ear when she pointed it out. ugh ugh, what's happened to me..... sad

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 13:59:02

@cory things get very unpleasant and he kind of eats unwillingly, pointing out that some other meal he had planned would now not come about hmm

@fuckadoodlepoopoo (love the name) it kinda turned out like that when I made my own meal plan just couldn't get anything right, stuff I bought didn't get used/chucked/wasted, was the wrong brand etc etc... in the end I gave up, if he wants the extra headache, so be it

fairylightsandtinsel Wed 23-Jan-13 14:01:44

The thing about agreeing to being a SAHM before the kids are born is that you don't know how you are going to feel / cope with being one. You've done 5 years and want something else, that doesn't seem unreasonable but I agree with Hec upthread that you can't just respond with a general "but I want to" you have to take each logistical problem and talk about how it could be solved. Do some research into the local childcare options and show him, ask him specifically if he can tweak his routine. I don't necessarily agree with those who are suggesting he MUST change his day, it may not be possible without him changing jobs, but if he is able to move things about a bit, even if it is somewhat detrimental then that is a reasonable ask. My DH goes later than he'd like into work on two days a week so I can go in early and he drops the kids off. he does less extra-curricular stuff so that I can do some. Those were changes that happened when I went back part time. Your last post about the porridge suggests that he has let himself get used to this situation and quite likes it. Unless you want to resign yourself to it, you must address it now. best of luck

Ullena Wed 23-Jan-13 14:03:48

Chewed you out over porridge?

I will also offer childcare, op, if you are anywhere in my area (ni) sad And definitely call your mum and tell her everything. Ask if she can help.

Porridge...he'd have had it over his flipping head! [mad]

fuckadoodlepoopoo Wed 23-Jan-13 14:04:08

I was offered some work last year. Two weeks work which required help with the dcs. I spent ages agonizing over the options, early start, late start, early finish etc so that i could do the job as it might have led to more permanent work.

My dh wasn't that interested in the options which was pissing me off. In the end i found a friend who offered to have my dcs in the mornings and then my dh would need to change his hours at work so that he could do school pick ups. I asked him to ask, he didn't, asked again, he didn't, i went ballistic. He asked, they agreed, he complained that it made him look stupid because the hours he was asking for were weird. This all took so long i lost the work. angry

Like someone said when they've been used to all this stuff being taken care of it doesn't even pop up on their radar.

Fuck Im pissed off now!

BegoniaBampot Wed 23-Jan-13 14:04:10

That's sad OP. my husband wouldn't really want me to go back to work as it all makes his life very easy, I do all the kid stuff, housework etc though he does help with the kids when he's here. Difference is I'm relatively happy with this as I have no stellar career to go back to, the money is ours and he would never pull the stunt with food, control, decor that your's had. What you have revealed a reall quite worrying.

Climbingpenguin Wed 23-Jan-13 14:06:16

sounds to me like you should get yourself out the relationship, find your feet and then do the course/training to start your return to work, even if it is a few years away. Could you move closer to your family?

tourdefrance Wed 23-Jan-13 14:07:00

Sounds like your mum and friends are spot on. Could your dc stay with your mum for the 5 days of the course, even if it meant missing school for a week ? Not the end of the world in reception.

Perhaps you could start by talking to your mum. She's seen this all close up. For her to even say anything to you must mean she's actually quite worried, because most people would rather bite their tongues than raising this kind of subject.

ShamyFarrahCooper Wed 23-Jan-13 14:10:17

doubleshott, it happens because they chip away at you. No controlling person starts out like that. It's a slow process and you don't even realise it. It becomes your normal. At some point you get a 'lightbulb' moment. I think you may be having yours and I'm cheering you on.

Your life, your marriage is not meant to be this way.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Wed 23-Jan-13 14:14:15

Blimey op that's awful! The power balance is all off in your relationship. I bet your mum is worried about you.

I had an ex where the balance was all wrong and that was i think mostly because he was older than me and so he thought he knew best about everything. Is there anything like that? Does he generally think he is superior?

How do you feel when he slags off your food etc? You said you hung your head. Do you ever tell him to fuck off and get over himself?

Have you thought about assertiveness training? I used to be a pleaser and learnt how to say no and how to value my own choices and my right to have them through general counselling. I learnt through that the reasons why i was so easily pushed around. Mainly my mum was like it and id actually been brought up to ignore my own needs and feelings for the sake of keeping the peace.

cory Wed 23-Jan-13 14:21:25

A controlling spouse sounds almost like an illness; something that wears you down and saps your immunity so you gradually lose normal resistance. I've seen that described so many times on MN and it is so depressing. But also cheering- because many of these posts come from posters who have finally broken through and cured themselves.

I hope this is a turning moment for you, OP. This is not a healthy relationship, it is not how you would want your children to grow up either to behave themselves or to be treated by future spouses.

Mumsyblouse Wed 23-Jan-13 14:23:31

OP, your mum and your friends are absolutely right. This is extremely controlling behaviour on his behalf and NOT how other people live.

No wonder your husband doesn't want you to go out and get a great job in telly. You might a) realise your life could be fun and enjoyable without his judgment and control over everything (him deciding on how you run the household is really really bad) and b) you will talk with other women who have supportive nice husbands and realise what a dud you have there.

Talk with your mum/friends and start thinking this through. How are you going to get back to being the nice, friendly (and having friends), career-oriented, fun-loving mum who sticks up for themselves and has lots of confidence, like you were before your husband systematically disempowered you?

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 14:24:59

lol @ullena

don't be mad fuckadoodle get even, our day will come, now we can see how things really are. Sorry to hear you lost yr potential job cos of yr DH dithering. Grrr

@tourdefrance that's part of my problem, my parents are in a different country, or my mum would have sorted my life out asap. In my family women not working is not an option. Even my bro is dumbfounded at my situation.

One issue here is my DH's family and their weird views on life. DH is abnormally very close to his mom. MIL is a typical post-war antifeminist/misogynist and I'm still amazed at her response after a day when they were visiting, and I literally hadn't sat down once (DS 4m.o. was ill, DD school run etc) when I sent DH's shirts for ironing to a local service. She was in shock "What?!? You don't like to iron?" I was kind of more hysterical amused than angry though.

ShamyFarrahCooper Wed 23-Jan-13 14:26:31

OP a book often discussed in relationships is called 'Why does he do that' by Lundy Bancroft

A brief summary is here:

Please don't assume this only applies to physical violent men.

Could your Mum come over from her home country and stay for the 5 days? Help you with the cost of the course? Help you pack your H's bags and put them on the lawn?

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 14:35:10

@mumsyblouse "How are you going to get back to being the nice, friendly (and having friends), career-oriented, fun-loving mum who sticks up for themselves and has lots of confidence, like you were before your husband systematically disempowered you"

Thanks for putting it so kindly smile . I kick myself daily for becoming this doormat. But its like cory said, it is an illness and creeps up on you gradually.

I think his sense of superiority, already nurtured by his mum to bloating, blossomed because I'm not British and didn't know how things are done here. So it was easy for him to foster a sense of uncertainty and failure in me. TBH I was a bit surprised at how things are done in his family because I believe this to be a nation of strong, empowered women (and now I'm hearing from some of them grin ) so the idea of being in deference to a man because he must be the wage-earner and even if not, to be expected to do all the menial tasks and childcare, it all felt so 1950s. Even my mum never had to do that, her MIL did all the childcare, and my Dad was blissfully ok with Mum never doing a spot of housework all her working life!!

fuckadoodlepoopoo Wed 23-Jan-13 14:38:17

Yeah we are definitely not all like that! smile

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 14:38:57

@MrsTerrypratchett oh my! you hit upon the exact thing my Mum herself proposed!! My parents (even my bro) have offered to pay for it too. But like an idiot I kind of blew her off, worried that DH may not like it and may not "allow" it even then grin what is wrong with me?

I'm gonna call Mom right away and tell her to plan her visit, there's another course in summer.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Wed 23-Jan-13 14:39:26

Where are you from op? Is it a country where he would expect women to fulfil a certain role (even though your family wasn't like that).

Yes, get Mum on the case... If she's anything like mine, and she sounds it, she will be great for this.

Some men marry women from overseas because they WANT a woman who is wrong-footed and slightly dependent. Do you come from a more traditional culture? Was he expecting a woman more like a 1950's housewife?

Great minds, fuckadoodle.

teenagersmother Wed 23-Jan-13 14:42:46

If you do decide to do the course , it may be worth ringing around childminders to see if they are able to cover your childcare.
I know plenty of childminders who would consider a one off contract like this. It would depend on their workloads of course but just saying its not impossible to fnid childcare out there.

Good luck with the course and your future,

Guiltypleasures001 Wed 23-Jan-13 14:43:54

Hi Double

I want to open your head almost and find that inner bitch you had a while back before this class A over achieving in his own mind took it away from you, if I could Ide bottle mine and send it down the line for your use, because I have never felt more like bitch slapping a bloke I have never met, luckily for him it wont happen.

I would suggest like others, that you quietly make plans for an exit, because this amount of control comes with secrecy and you never know what he might have stashed away for himself. Photocopy every legal document, shares, bank statements, and set up a fund if you can even if its in your mums name, and watch the bastards blokes face when you turn on your heel and walk out the door.

OcotoAlert Wed 23-Jan-13 14:44:12

Holy crap.

I thought it was 5 days a week, for a year or something.

5 days total ?!

OP - you are a bright star being shat on from a great height. Time to brush off, pick yourself up and start to shine again.

I would also like to point out that your gregarious, strong, capable and resilient character comes across very clearly - if only for the fact that you used the much under-used underlining in your OP grin grin.

Come on now, buck up and crack on with what you need to do. Best of British, womanly, luck to you.

ithaka Wed 23-Jan-13 14:50:11

I remember when I was very little, my mum wanted to return to work 3 days a week and her professional job even came with a nursery place. My dad went mental - his is a lovely man, but he was appalled my mum would work & farm us out to nurseries.

She did return to work and over ten years later she had an affair and left my dad (who was devastated). She later told me the marriage really ended when he didn't support her returning to work.

It is so sad, but that was over 40 years ago and my dad would behave differently now. Your husband is being jaw droppingly unreasonable and placing his marriage at severe risk.

For his sake as much as your own you need to help him to understand this or it may well be his loss, in the end.

cory Wed 23-Jan-13 14:53:18

I can relate to that feeling of putting up with a lot of shit because you are foreign and don't know what you can rightly expect.

Not that I ever had to take any shit from dh, but I did put up with years of totally illegal bollocks from dc's school until Mumsnetters pointed me in the right direction and I realised that I had greatly been underestimating the levels of civilisation in this country.

When you move into a new country you are so eager to cope and not be one of those silly foreigners who moan about the lack of marmite in the shops, it's easy to tip over into the other extreme and put up with any old rubbish. I needed Mumsnet for a reality check.

pictish Wed 23-Jan-13 14:53:55

Yanbu. He sounds like a drill sargeant. My sympathies. Yuck.

photographerlady Wed 23-Jan-13 14:59:49

Hi there, I can't relate on the YANBU but can offer my opinion of working in "TV" (Broadcast and Video Production/POST/SFX. Training in this field is pretty worthless. Even if you were seeking a refresher on tech no course is going to be up to day and with both broadcast and video production moving to HD no course will have the latest gear... and tbh there is not much technical difference between beta and more digital HD kit. I currently work in senior management in a post house, not this role nor my role as a photojournalist for broadcast came from any course it was simply learning as much as I could from one production company, to the next broadcaster and then dabbling in web based video production.

Honestly my biggest advice would be to get a small role in what you fancy (you said TV which most do not use in the industry so you could be after broadcast, post production, production, vfx, or technical assistant work). But regardless a small role as a junior editor, video producer for a small company needing web-based video work, media support etc will surround you with loads of kit and you will pick it up on the job.

I certainly never hire someone just off a course and even though I went to university most my team I hired worked their way up to the senior roles they are now and as long as you aren't going into prime broadcasting like BBC/ITN you will have normal hours.

INeedThatForkOff Wed 23-Jan-13 14:59:56

OP, this is rude of me, but are you really getting how wrong this is? You sound amused rather than angry or fed up, but as others have pointed out, you need a contingency for Leaving The Bastard.

I'm on maternity leave at the moment, but have taken on a short term contract. I've told DH my schedule, where he is taking the slack, and that on the day of the deadline, he needs to take a day's holiday so I can be sure to meet it. Not in an overbearing way, just as a matter of fact. That's how it's supposed to work.

photographerlady Wed 23-Jan-13 15:02:41

oh and P.S with 17 years experience no one will bat a lash to you taking five years out for family. Just work on tailored CVs and get out there smile

FairPhyllis Wed 23-Jan-13 15:25:26

Do not rely on him for anything relating to your course or finding a job, particularly child care. He might (grudgingly) agree to help out and then invent a reason he can't do it at the last minute so you can't go. Pay people or get friends/family to look after the children.

Your mum sounds lovely - get her over here and let her help you.

Get family support. Do the course. Get a job. Figure out whether you want to live like this for the rest of your life.

SirBoobAlot Wed 23-Jan-13 15:31:08

Your problems are way beyond a five day course he won't provide childcare for.

Leave the bastard.


skullcandy Wed 23-Jan-13 15:42:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

doubleshotlatte don't want to read this and run. I think you have a much bigger problem than the return to work. He sounds very controlling and prefers to keep you under his thumb. If both of you are working, you'll need to share equally the responsibility of housework, sick days, etc. It'll have to be a equal partnership. Your mum and friends are right. Maybe have a think about what you want to do with this relationship? Maybe open up to your mum or those friends who noticed? Sometimes just talking about it helps you see what your options are.

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 15:49:52

@ShamyFarrahCooper I've been reading that link you sent and some of it is scarily accurate, tho DH is not violent in any way he is more the passive aggressive/mean-spirited getting-back-at-you kind. Still I do see parallels.

Jux Wed 23-Jan-13 16:09:38

Oh please kick him out. He will put block after block after block in the way of your aspirations, and make life impossible for you. You have everything to gain, and nothing to lose, by losing him.

superstarheartbreaker Wed 23-Jan-13 16:27:02

Ignore and get back into work. If he throws a paddy then he is clearly a controlling jerk. I take that back; it sounds like he already IS a controlling jerk.

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 16:30:58

@photographerlady tbh I should have even said telly not even TV because I was trying to communicate a rough idea of where I work and its associated inimitable-to-family nature to women from all backgrounds... but I digress...

I did the whole working my way up from no-pay jobs (after film school even) thru to pretty darn senior level at, you got me there, a top broadcaster. I've taught myself 10 times over on various new software/cameras and invested in kit. But here I am, 5 years on, back to square bloody one.

But I doubt anyone will consider me for a self-shooting P/D job if I cannot prove familiarity with new tapeless HD cameras. Not in a market saturated with 20somethings who will work for less and have no family commitments.

What we're talking about here is the freedom opportunity to go off to even do a job where I do this catch-up-with-tech which will also have to pay enough for childcare and be flexible enough for school runs. I am beginning to agree with some of the posts on here that whichever solution I came up with will be opposed because DH does not want me to go back to work. Period.

PackItInNow Wed 23-Jan-13 16:32:59

OP, he is not your master and keeper and he doesn't own you. You are an individual and entitled to go out to work if you want to.

YOU DON'T NEED HIS PERMISSION. Tell him straight you are doing what you can to get a job in your chosen field and he either supports your decision in bringing in more money for the household or he finds himself another lackey to run round after him.

Yfronts Wed 23-Jan-13 16:44:49

He is not in charge. You have taken 5 years to be a SAHM, you have now done your bit but now want to work/train. Find wrap around care and organise yourself. You can do it and are equally entitled to have a fulfilling job. Why should you work a few hours in a shop? Why does he want you so reliant on him?

snuffaluffagus Wed 23-Jan-13 16:50:01

Oh doubleshotlatte. I work in telly too, and you're right, you DO need to operate tapless HD cameras etc, give me a PM if you want to chat.

Your husband has NO right to tell you you can/can't work.. you're an adult!

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 16:55:30

@OcotoAlert lol and thanks ("British womanly luck" very cute!! grin )

@INeedThatForkOff that's me I'm afraid, grinning in the face of terror, probably why things got so bad. In that way I do try to emulate the British, stiff upper lip smile

@Cory and @MrsTerryPratchett - my family's Indian via da States but you've got me thinking now about his expectations regarding traditional family roles, sadly I didn't get that memo! You're right about a mumsnet reality check. I see why I stayed away from my Mum and mumsnet for a year. Perhaps I was worried my disillusion will be exposed.

OK I gotta clock off now and get to the evening's chores. But thanks everyone for helping me decide a few things:

(a) I will get Mum over here for the summer and try to do a course then (the one in the OP is filled up now)
(b) I will, like photographelady suggested see if I can get training in other maybe P/T jobs
(c) I'll start talking to some childminders as that's the one childcare option I haven't explored

Incidentally, being a pretty thorough detail-freak myself grin I did draw up a whole excel spreadsheet of Options/Schedule/costs before I discussed the whole training/jobhunt plan with DH. So I did have answers to his questions. But they weren't acceptable because there cannot be any room for a slip-up him pitching in to help in any scenario. Hell, even I can't draft such a foolproof plan hmm

SpicyPear Wed 23-Jan-13 16:55:38

I think the many many red flags in your OP have been pointed out in full by now but I felt compelled to add my first LTB.

Seriously. Please please start taking steps to regain control of your life from this man.

MadameOvary Wed 23-Jan-13 17:02:59

Oh OP, this is really the start of something unpleasant. In my far too extensive experience of controlling men, it does NOT work to put your foot down with a passive aggressive type, they will just find even subtler ways of undermining you.
Do not expect his co-operation, do all the research on your own and keep him in the dark as much as possible. I realise that this sounds completely counter-productive at this stage, but the more information you can gather on your own without him bringing you down at every turn, the stronger you will (hopefully) feel.
Get your family involved as much as possible. Your need to do this. If you can present him with a fait accompli, preferably with witnesses, I would guess that's your best chance.
I know what Im saying sounds OTT, but be prepared for him to be obstructive as he can. Controlling types cannot stand their OH having any sort of autonomy, so IMO you are going to have a battle on your hands.

funkybuddah Wed 23-Jan-13 17:27:51

I havent read the whole thread but has it been revealed why he cant take annual leave to cover it?

I make dp take annual leave to cover me going to gigs! (he works nights)

Pilgit Wed 23-Jan-13 17:52:09

Haven't read the entire thread so apologies if this has been said - marriage is a partnership and as such you should (IMO) facilitate each others hopes, desires and dreams. You don't squash each others! Of course there are practical things to go through but when my DH wanted to go back to uni (I pay in tax more than he earns in a year) 200 miles away and we had a 2 yr old at home, with me working full time, when the prospects of better money afterwards were small and the only reason to do it was for his self esteem (he buggered it up first time round and spent 15 years regretting it) I didn't stop him - I supported him, we worked it out and he did it (and I paid his fees!). 2 years on he got a first and massive self esteem boost. Yes, it was horrific at times and was very hard for us as a couple and a family BUT it was his dream so I made it happen. And I am really glad I did.

At the risk of outing me - my bosses advice whenever anyone gets married is the following "happy wife = happy life".

MadamFolly Wed 23-Jan-13 18:10:52

You are his equal, he has no right to tell you what to do, no right to make you feel small and no right to be your controller.

dayshiftdoris Wed 23-Jan-13 18:13:09


I am single parent... no family support and ex nowhere to be seen

I juggled work and mummy duties for 7yrs... shit happened and it was dealt with as it happened. You can not cover it all in a spreadsheet...

Are you saying though that there were options open to you that meant day to day there was no need for your DH to help?
If so then it is do able - you just need to lower your expectations - ie... have none regarding your DH

AnyFucker Wed 23-Jan-13 18:23:37

Do the course

Get a good job

Build up an exit fund

You are going to need it

Jux Wed 23-Jan-13 18:45:06

Definitely get your mum over for the summer. You can bet that - if you get as far as booking the course - a problem will appear which will prevent you actually doing it, when the time comes, if you rely on dh for anything.

Men like this are quite capable of fabricating illness in themselves - or more likely their children - in order to stopp the Surrendered Wife doing something of which they disapprove. If your mum's over, then she can deal with illness/last minute meeting 200 miles away which can't be missed etc.

Now ring your mum, and get yourself booked on the course.

perfectstorm Wed 23-Jan-13 18:52:19

Financial abuse. Using his monetary clout to keep you under his thumb. I suggest you start seeing a counsellor, in all honesty, because while you aren't being hit, he is trying to take your ability to live your own life from you. And it's not acceptable.

Get your mum over, yes. Your exit strategy will depend on your having support on hand to complete that course. And I'm afraid the marriage is doomed now, if you see him in this way, and he treats you with such contempt. You need to build up your earning potential again and then either renegotiate the relationship from a position of greater independence, if that's what you decide to do, or leave. Have to say the latter would be my preference. Life is too short for what you describe. There are lovely men out there who won't behave this way - and being alone isn't so bad, either.

Hissy Wed 23-Jan-13 19:29:12

Wanting to lend my support and strength to you. I applaud OxfordBags and diddl like a starved seal. MadameO too knows so much, as extreme as her post may appear to be, I doubt it'll end up being too far off the mark.

If you prepare for the hardest war, you will win every battle, and this is sadly what your life will become for you to get what's you're right to expect. We'll be with you every step of the way.

Is your H white British btw?

Hissy Wed 23-Jan-13 19:30:53

I meant to say too, how sorry I am that you've come to realise what kind of situation you're in.

You're not alone in this though.

foreverondiet Wed 23-Jan-13 19:50:12

Its a one week course - do you not have friends who could help you for the week? I would help a friend with a couple of pick ups if they had a one off course to attend.

However making a "senior" job work may require more comprehensive childcare than you currently have - eg nanny (or au pair if you live walking distance to school / nursery) to cover school runs, when they are ill, school holidays etc. However I guess no need to cross this bridge until you get a job!

morethanpotatoprints Wed 23-Jan-13 19:56:51

I have every sympathy with you OP and others in your position.

I think there are two separate issues here. The financial control especially how the OP feels about asking for money and the work situation.

What I do find hard to understand is how these situations arise. Do couples not discuss this before having dc. For me the answer was easy, and no way was I ever going to work post dc. However, we also decided that what was mine was mine and what was his was mine, lol so no financial arguments.

I know others really need to work for their sanity, but why does the partner not know how the other feels? Also, surely finances should be discussed and agreed upon either before pregnancy or certainly during.

I really don't understand, certainly not judging.

perfectstorm Wed 23-Jan-13 19:57:51

A decent childminder would cover school runs. There are several who take kids to the preschool my son attends, and I'd have absolutely no hesitation in using one, because they're recommended highly by the preschool and other mums, and the kids they care for are great.

perfectstorm Wed 23-Jan-13 19:59:44

"For me the answer was easy, and no way was I ever going to work post dc. However, we also decided that what was mine was mine and what was his was mine, lol so no financial arguments."

Sorry, did you mean to say NOT work post DC? Because otherwise, a situation where what's yours was yours and his his would result in your being penniness, no? Plus him having free childcare and housekeeper on tap, without any contributions required at all.

Pendipidy Wed 23-Jan-13 20:16:42

Whilst i think you should. be able to discuss this with your dh so that you are both happy and fulfilled i just wanted to ask: why doesn't he let you do the shopping and cooking when you a sahm? Isn't that part of the job description? And the ironing?

wordfactory Wed 23-Jan-13 20:22:35

Op, there are men aplenty who love to resign from all domestic famillial responsibility. And worse, there are women who actively encourage it. There are women here on MN who almost brag that they do everyhting at home and with the DC so their DH can earn the brass.

But here's the thing. What woman wants to be married to a man who absents himself from family responsibility?

Sure, sometimes it makes no sense to share out responsibilities equally, just for the sake of it, but no sharing at all? I don't think so. No matter how taxing DH's job is (and it is) and no matter how much he earns (and it's hell of a lot), I could not find him remotely attractive if he simply assumed that I would deal with everyhting pertaining to hearth, home and children.

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 20:29:28

@perfectstorm lots of good ideas there, and I like the general tone of your responses, very elegant and self-sufficient. One day I will sound like that too smile

doubleshotlatte Wed 23-Jan-13 20:36:02

pendipity lol, thou art surely kidding

I'd do the ironing, sure, if he'll watch the kids/put the baby to sleep/put the wash on etc so I have the TIME to do it.

If there're women out there who manage it all, and more, with DC, without help from hubby, well great! They're probably not doing anything else much like my MIL who has no inner life and no hobbies to the point of being a robot. I'm quite happy to fail in any such domestic goddess competition, thank you hmm

morethanpotatoprints Wed 23-Jan-13 20:39:34


I meant that what I had was /is mine and what dh earns is also mine. We decided I would manage money, but its all one pot and as long as bills are paid nobody feels they need to ask. No I don't work I'm a sahm, purely by choice though, no dictatorship.
It was to make the point of a couple agreeing on how finances are managed.
However, after reading all the thread I realise that in this mans case and others like this, they probably move the goal posts or decide for themselves.
So my question above was a bit silly really. I must start reading all of the thread before commenting.

Peka Wed 23-Jan-13 20:48:51

Hi there Double I do really feel for you. I have been in a controlling relationship (luckily without kids) and it's so hard - the hardest thing is you blame yourself. I laugh now when I remember how I used to spend my whole time saying 'you're amazing' and him telling me 'you're shit' when actually I was and am miles better than he ever had the potential to be (oh and really shy about it too smile). I'm not sure if you want to introduce this into your home right now but an experienced au-pair could be a flexible/cost-effective way to cover any late evenings etc? I have a friend who works in TV with 3 kids and this seems to work for her. Obv would need to have very good childcare experience!

notmyproblem Wed 23-Jan-13 21:30:41

Double, are you really taking it seriously, what all these posters are telling you?

Because you sound a bit like you're in some cartoon jokey la-la land where you can make some decision about your mum coming for a visit while you merrily take your course, and suddenly your marriage and DH will be all hunky-dory again.

LISTEN to what people are saying to you. This guy is an abuser, he will wear you down, stand in your way, do whatever it takes to undermine you (even to spite himself) just to keep you under his thumb.

Please start making some serious plans, contact Women's Aid, dig yourself out of this pit of lack of self-esteem you have.

Other husbands and families -- normal ones -- do not operate this way. You've landed a first class grade A wanker as your life partner and you know it. The sooner you admit it to yourself the better off you'll be.

If you leave soon, maybe your childen can be saved from growing up to be abusers (sons) or ones who will be abused (daughters) the same way.

sad for you.

Joiningthegang Wed 23-Jan-13 21:55:20

Notnyproblem - i see what you are saying but do you not think she has enough of being treated badly by her husband with out you piling in with sonethig that frankly sounds rude and slightly bullying.

I think it is sinking in for her how bad the situation may be, it sounds to me like she is really listening and thanking posters for helping her to see other peoples marriages aren't like hers.

She needs kindness, not being told she isnt taking it seriously.

And whilst he sounds like a knob, getting out ia never going to be easy for anyone so please dont make her feel any worse than she already does, her self eateem is likely to be low enough.

BegoniaBampot Wed 23-Jan-13 21:55:54

Word factory,

you have pretty much described our set up. I don't brag about it though, it just is what it is and though not perfect, it allows us to function without being too stressed. My husband earns much more than I could and he also can be away for weeks at a time. He works and I look after the kids and home. He does help with the kids when he can and can easily manage when I go off for days or a week which he encourages. If I worked (for not a lot) then we would all have to do much more and be more stressed. You just sound really sneery there. Do I sometimes get frustrated, yes. Do we sometimes not get the balance right, yes. But most people struggle to keep everyone totally happy and get the balance just right.

Pendipidy Wed 23-Jan-13 22:31:28

no Double. Of course i am not joking. My d h works full time and i work part time self employed and look after two dc . I do 99% of the housework cos i am home . Can't you iron and watch the dc !. I did, this morning for an hour while toddler played .

And i run a business. It isn't a competition, it is just that certain roles have responsibilities.

I don't think your dh should carte blanche dictate to you, it should be about compromise as much as possible.

thesnootyfox Wed 23-Jan-13 22:35:01

Pendipity - Why do you feel the OP should do the ironing. The ironing doesn't even appear to be an issue.

I'm in a similar position to you Pendipity, work p/t, self employed, 2 kids, dh full time, long commute and he does the ironing.

perfectstorm Wed 23-Jan-13 22:43:26

"I meant that what I had was /is mine and what dh earns is also mine. We decided I would manage money, but its all one pot and as long as bills are paid nobody feels they need to ask. No I don't work I'm a sahm, purely by choice though, no dictatorship. "

Ah, I get you! And I was a SAHM for a few years too, very happily, and that's how we worked it, too. It was a job and DH always acknowledged as much. Our money is in common, because, y'know, a family.

OP go easy on yourself, it's very hard to see the wood for the trees in a situation such as this. I do think your priority needs to be to return to the workplace as soon as you can, as your self esteem will build again when you are being recognised professionally, and I would hope that would help you in dealing with your home situation, too. You'll get there. Just approach it one step at a time.

Hissy Thu 24-Jan-13 07:31:25

This is not about ironing, it's not about housework, or even childcare.

It's about the H feeling entitled to TELL his wife that she can't go back to work when she wants to. If she wanted to stay home, that's fine, but she wants and needs to get back into the workplace, she needs to be more financially independent of H, and she's fed up of having to beg him for funds.

There is WAY more to this than the SAHM/WOHM issue.

Pendypidy has no concept of an abusive situation, that's wonderful, really, but it renders her less than qualified to make a judgement here, no matter if she does fundamentally mean well.

OP, your instincts are what will guide you here. Don't back down. No matter the 'cost'.

Put it this way, marriage to a man like this, is not a marriage: It's a sentence.

I also understand that the we you stated in you staying home was a royal we, one that was made by HIM, that you went along with at the time.

This is your life, you can decide how to live your life, no-one gets to TELL you how to live it.

Morloth Thu 24-Jan-13 07:54:55

You don't have a husband, you have an owner.

OP I haven't got any advice to add apart from to agree with the wise words from the posters here, I just wanted to give you my support.

My sister was in a relationship with a man like your DH, when she went back to part time work he put every obstacle possible in her way. He used to reluctantly agree to pick up the DCs and then ring her at work 10 minutes before pick and say he couldn't do it so she had to leave work.
He also used to ring her in the morning if he was supposed to do the drop off and say one of the DCs were sick so she had to come home and take the day off. The children were not sick, he told them they were playing a joke on mummy.

She persevered through it, got a childminder, never asked him to get involved in anything. She hid money away for 2 years, even though he insisted she transfer her wages directly into his account every month.
Then she left.

Today,3 years later she is a different person. Happy, confident, and content.
I hope you can achieve the same x

NeedlesCuties Thu 24-Jan-13 08:01:36

OP, you sound like a lovely woman, with lots of talent and creativity.

Your DCs are lucky to have a mum like you.

Don't let your husband sap all your energy and drive.

Morloth Thu 24-Jan-13 08:04:52

When I let DH know I was intending to go back to work. He asked what I needed him to do. I found a job and we sorted out our childcare issues together.

Abitwobblynow Thu 24-Jan-13 08:17:50

Good luck Double. I know you are processing all of this at your own pace and will put in the right plans that work for you.

How lucky you are that you have a mother on your side! Are you going to confide in her?

I am guessing that you are not white British. If that is the case, there is a thread 'leave an arranged marriage' - now, THAT girl has got guts. She is sorted, and she has a plan.

Good luck. Remember, change and comfort do not ride on the same bus xxx

FreshLeticia Thu 24-Jan-13 08:31:34

It was the whole controlling the menu/food shopping that made me go shock
I hope at least that the fucker cooks his meals he planned himself.
If he controls the menus and then expects you to cook it to order he is treating you as nothing better than a skivvy.
I mean, my DH is useless at cooking, but he recognises that and as a result is just so eternally grateful that I make his dinner that he wouldn't dream of criticising what he was given.

Xroads Thu 24-Jan-13 08:41:51

Double - would your "H agree to a plan for you to be back at work within so many months?

I'm not a sahm but I'm a childminder, a few years ago I started spending my time on hobbies and one of them turned out to be painting which I'm talented at (so people say) so I've done a few murals and canvas' on the side and now I've told dh I would like a business in art, possibly along side a florist/ events type business at first he was quite suprised, thought of reasons it wouldn't work etc mainly money related but we have now come to a compromise where I have dropped 6 hours of childminding per week and I am about to start working with a local community project doing murals for them on a regular basis. The longer term plan is that in 18mths time I can either give up childminding completely or I could just do before and after school, depending on how much I have build up my other business. It's frustrating, I'd love to be doing what I want to do now, I certainly understand you need your creative outlet - I know when I don't make time to be creative I'm miserable.

Baby steps? Or if you can afford it just do it?

NumericalMum Thu 24-Jan-13 08:50:05

I really feel for you OP. I had a colleague who wouldn't let his wife work. He then had an affair and she left him. Luckily he is incredibly generous to her but she is essentially starting out in a new job after 10 years off. Incredibly sad.

I don't think you get that you are in an abusive relationship op. you keep lol as if its something funny. It's not. You need to get away and if you try and do any of the things you want to do he will step up the abuse and the control u til he gets violent. What he is doing to you is serious. Get out now, while you can.
And pendypidy can get to fuck. Do his ironing? The definition of a sahm is to stay at home and be a mum. Any housework on top of that is a bonus. biscuit for you.

Good luck double too. Hope your mum can help you sort our your emotions and options. Ignore people like pendipidy. She can have her i-work-and-i-do-the-ironing competition. There are a lot of women out there who can't do all the housework, childcare and the ironing. Most husbands help. But then I'm the opposite of pendipidy. I hate cleaning (we have a cleaner) and I don't iron anything. My mum is no domestic goddess either. At least I like cooking so I've improved slightly on domestic goddess evolution chart grin

Actually a few post upthread reminded me your situation is probably more like your husband critising the shirt you've just ironed is now good enough angry.

I dont have anything to add apart from that I deal with shit situations with humour too and am hmm at the people telling you that you are not taking this seriously. I get the feeling from your posts that you are well aware how serious this is, and you don't need posters complaining that you aren't having a complete breakdown

You have had loads of great advice. Can I just illustrate this with how a non-controlling DH might deal with similar?

I am currently a SAHM, not out of choice but because my last employers moved the goalposts and DH works odd hours so I just wasn't able to carry on in my job, so we agreed I would be a SAHM for a while.

I was considering applying for a 1 year course that would enable me to get a good 9-5 job that I would be good at and love.

I was chatting through the options with DH - I said I was worried that if I did get on the course, it would basically shit all over his life for a year. He would need to come home a little earlier and take the children to school/nursery /CM every weekday and I would be out full time plus assignments/essays. Plus lots of money for childcare.

He said - go for it, it's only a year and you would love it, we will manage.

I didn't get a place on the course sad but I have a lovely supportive husband and I know he would have been happy for me to get a great job and be happy.

And as for at home? I do iron, because I quite like ironing. The nearest to food issues is that he might ask me to get him a particular thing he fancies, I only cook for him a couple of times a week but make sure we have stuff in the fridge he likes. And I spend his wages on whatever I see fit. He knows we both have the whole family's best interests at heart and he doesn't even raise an eyebrow when I spend his hard earned salary on nice boots or posh wool (I like to knit) We are a team, together.

I feel really sad for you OP - please work on getting your independence back, you are just as important and valid a person as anyone else and there is no need to put up with it.

LessMissAbs Thu 24-Jan-13 10:51:49

I find this horrific OP.

I don't actually ask my DH if I can do anything - I just do it. If it impacts on him, I will discuss it first, but I will do it anyway. As far as I see it, you only have one life, and who wants to be sitting in the nursing home dribbling, wishing for 10 years that you'd made more of it, while you were still capable?

*After much debate, he conceded I could try for a very local, 2 times a week non-taxing job like temping or admin or shop asst. With all due respect to these jobs, I have 17 years of experience, 2 degrees and expensive training, not to mention bags of talent (so I'm told). Surely I can find better paid/more satisfying work?

And why do I want to work? Because I need the creative outlet, am good at it, I miss it and finally I really need the economic independence. I hate having to beg for/justify every penny I spend just because I didn't earn it*

You've answered your own question here. It makes perfect sense for you to go back to work, loads of families have both parents working, so basically he is asking you to sacrifice your entire life so he can have what he wants. And its not as if you're being kept in a grand style! You sound full of energy and promise, and I really hope you do go back to work.

doubleshotlatte Thu 24-Jan-13 11:32:55

@Beyondthelimits yes I do deal with tough situations with humour, reminds me how I used to be pretty tough and unflappable. Was on a shoot where local criminals tried to hold us to ransom, I laughed at them too. They're in jail now.

Believe me I'm taking all the advice and offered experiences very, very seriously.

abitwobbly No he is white British. His family isn't very ...erm... cosmopolitan, never been out of Britain nor have any idea of other cultures etc. So any unique aspects of my personality, any aspects of our home life different from MILs 1950s values, were attributed to me being non-white.

May I add that DH and I don't have shouting matches, and I don't do tears or stomp off. I'm very logical and calm. But fear for my babies' feelings stops me doing what I would have otherwise.

While he can be great with the kids, he has left the childcare totally to me. For years until DC2 I had not one day off, not one weekend where he looked after DD. I would ask but he always had "work" to do. Just once I went to a industry meetup only to be called 30min in while I was still on the Tube: "your baby is crying, she wants her mum, is this really a good idea?" he said coldly. I was useless after that, no good for any networking and rushed home too early.

Not one night has he taken a crying baby off me or shared night feed duty. Well he did a few times because I insisted, only to give up 5 mins in and dump the crying baby in its cot so I would have to get up and take over anyway.

I'd say he's not abusive as such, having read thru the NPD recovery link. More like a lazy, misled, patriarchal passive-aggressive. Partly because I let him. Partly because he's very convincing in his sense of superiority.

So yes he wants me to stay an SAHM because he doesn't want to deal with school runs/childcare/illnesses/GP visits or the general unpredictable nature of parenting. And because if I force him to do it, he will do it with bad grace and make my darlings cry and sap their confidence, I don't want that.

doubleshotlatte Thu 24-Jan-13 11:38:27

@OneLittleToddlingTerror You're right, that did happen! I spent an evening lovingly ironing his shirts only to be told I was doing it wrong, I should have used the steam from the iron just so, not water just so etc. I also used to iron stuff before packing in suitcases (don't ask) but he disapproved of that too hmm so I can't win in the ironing department, really grin

AThingInYourLife Thu 24-Jan-13 12:16:20

"And because if I force him to do it, he will do it with bad grace and make my darlings cry and sap their confidence, I don't want that."

So he is abusive to your children as well as to you?

How did a bright, funny, interesting woman like you end up with such a loser?

Your mother must be horrified.

Hissy Thu 24-Jan-13 12:18:12

Sweety, you can't see he's abusive so much yet, but he is. When you try to stand up for yourself on this, he's going to go for the low blows.

You'll have to do this by yourself. With OUR support of course.

I'd also venture that some level of racism has a play here too.

I'm so sorry. It's really a very horrid situation.

diddl Thu 24-Jan-13 12:27:50

If he´s not doing something so that you will-how is that not abusive?

He gives up after 5/30mins?

What if you weren´t contactable-he would have had to cope then, & likely would!

Using your children to stop you doing something-that is seriously mean & twisted imo.

He´ll be telling you that if you love them, why wouldn´t you want to always be there for them!

redexpat Thu 24-Jan-13 12:42:43

OP abuse does not just mean physical violence. There is emotional and financial abuse too. Once you understand this you will see that the way he treats you is in fact abuse.

wineandroses Thu 24-Jan-13 12:43:15

Op, these words "*your baby is crying, she wants her mum*" and he will do it with bad grace and make my darlings cry and sap their energy, made me shed a little tear. If my DH was willing to use my DC in this way, to get to me, and to have so little empathy for their needs, then by god he would be gone, his feet would not touch the ground. Your H is abusive, but not just to you, to your DC too. Please plan your exit. He will know that the best way to control you will be through your DC. What a bloody horrible way to live.

AThingInYourLife Thu 24-Jan-13 12:44:55

" Just once I went to a industry meetup only to be called 30min in while I was still on the Tube: "your baby is crying, she wants her mum, is this really a good idea?" he said coldly. I was useless after that, no good for any networking and rushed home too early."

That is a low blow.

It is nakedly manipulative and controlling.

It says that the children are yours, not his (although this sort of wanker always gets all worked up about his children when his wife finly gets sick of him, and that you are not allowed to ever leave them.

He sounds awful and yes he is abusive.....abuse does not just have to be physical.

He will always put obstacles in your way because he wants you dependent on him...he will grind you down until you are grateful to him for having you, you will think that you aren't worthy of anyone else..that you are useless etc etc.

Your kids will grow up thinking this is normal.

I feel sad for you

He sounds like a nasty, horrible control freak...

delboysfileofax Thu 24-Jan-13 12:54:09

I really dont understand her partners outlook. Surely it is good for his wife to have a job and career for her mental well being.

I'm male and do all I can to change my shifts around to make sure I can take our child to the childminder. I think it helps that my partner has a good job (and I'm very proud of her career) and so I want to do everything I can to help her. Including taking leave for when she has to go to residential conferences etc

Surely it would be good for your partner? He gets to spend more time with his child and he gets to see his wife happier and more fullfilled

Mumsyblouse Thu 24-Jan-13 12:59:11

Ok, if you think he's just a bit of a lazy 1950's throwback, even in the 1950's my grandma ran her own household, decided what to grow and what to cook and took charge of all household decisions. You don't have as much freedom as she had 60 years ago in all honesty.

One really easy way to tell is: are you afraid to do any of these normal everyday things that other people do all the time: invite a friend over for drinks at your house this evening? cook what you fancy for yourself tonight? leave him with the kids so you can go to the gym? invite your mum to stay for a week and let him know when she's coming? decide to sod the housework, go out for the afternoon and get a takeway this evening?

I know the answer to these questions and you know them too. I bet you avoid upsetting this man at all costs- hence no need to use his fists.

Mumsyblouse Thu 24-Jan-13 13:01:44

delboys this is why I like to work and my husband likes me to work and I like him to work, we both get a lot of personal fulfilment from our careers and so support each other in pursing them, including both of us looking after the children so the other can go to conferences/abroad or whatever's necessary. As someone else up thread said, of course it would be easier if my husband stayed home, did all the pick-ups, cooked exactly what I liked and generally never left the house, but why would I want him to live like that when I love him and want him to be happy (which he is by working)?

Cakecrumbsinmybra Thu 24-Jan-13 13:03:11

I'd say he's not abusive as such, having read thru the NPD recovery link. More like a lazy, misled, patriarchal passive-aggressive. Partly because I let him. Partly because he's very convincing in his sense of superiority.

I'm sorry, I'd still class him as abusive, based on what you have said. And I doubt you are showing him in his worse light either, as you seem like a positive person, and perhaps part of you doesn't want to admit how bad the situation is. Do you really want to stay together?

Cakecrumbsinmybra Thu 24-Jan-13 13:05:12

Surely it would be good for your partner? He gets to spend more time with his child and he gets to see his wife happier and more fullfilled
Yes, delboys, most guys would prefer this situation. But OP's H is a different kettle of fish!

delboysfileofax Thu 24-Jan-13 13:07:40

Its so wrong though- i would quite happily be a stay at home dad providing we still had the same income (being a stay at home parent with no income must be really really tough) Its the bit the OP said about controlling the money which scared me. What a dick.

Hissy Thu 24-Jan-13 13:10:29

Surely it would be good for your partner? He gets to spend more time with his child and he gets to see his wife happier and more fullfilled

He is allegic to his W being happy, and will do anything, to anyone or thing to make sure that this doesn't happen.

Anything, and anyone (including his DC) are collateral damage. In fact children are the best way of hurting us.

There is nothing usual or normal about this H. Normal rules don't apply here.

pinkbraces Thu 24-Jan-13 13:13:39

I feel so sad reading your OP, I dont know why but its effecting me more than some of the abuse threads I have read. I think its because you sound as if you were such a strong, feisty woman, and your now unable to live your life because your husband wont allow it.

Perhaps if you asked yourself, would you want your daughter to be married to such a man , please start planning how to either change the way you are living or leave.

Hissy Thu 24-Jan-13 13:16:40

The fear here is that if she is 'happy' she will grow strong, popular, beautiful and powerful.

He will not be able to compete with her on these levels, and he knows it, so it's better to destroy her, so he looks and is higher up the ladder than she is.

OP, I think he can't possibly have a woman as an equal, and I think that race also has a part to play in this. He and is family are unworldly and dated in their views. They don't see you as the wonderful person that we can all see shining through, they see a threat.

There's no hope with them. Any of them. You don't have any allies.

Talk to your mum. Frankly. She's on the right side.

Lollydaydream Thu 24-Jan-13 13:55:15

I've read the thread and whilst I'm not sure I have much to add that hasn't been said I wanted to add a note of support. I hope you can feel bolstered by the weight of support here and know that so many here would support you. I hope you can take this and use it to turn your life your way.

On the surface it's simple - he doesn't want to have to do the extra stuff to support your career because it would impact on his set up and routine. Below the surface I think there are a whole load of other issues which make him behave like this. I don't know the answer, but hopefully other suggestions on here will help you find it. You have every right to do the career you want, and it's up to him to help you do it - you have done your bit helping him. I loathe men who think marriage is a one way street.

Good luck - your work sounds exciting, I'm not surprised you want to get back to it.

Jux Thu 24-Jan-13 15:54:58

Does he see himself as the Great Pater Familias, with little wifey removing all inconveniences from his path so he can stride through life without haing to do anything he doesn't actually want to do?

Sadly, there are men around like that. They are called abusers necause they are abusing your good nature, his position within the family, his money etc. Doesn't have to be anything to do with NPD, necessarily.

fuckadoodlepoopoo Thu 24-Jan-13 17:29:13

Wow! So he's controlling and incredibly old fashioned. How did you, someone from a modern type of family, end up with someone like him? I don't mean just the controlling stuff, that creeps up on you! I mean someone so clearly old fashioned with such defined male/female roles. I don't mean that as a criticism, Im just interested in how it came about.

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