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DH is very controlling, selfish and often very angry - help!

(145 Posts)
LucyLego Thu 03-Jan-13 10:37:56

DH has had a rough ride in the last few years and it's changed him in to a different person. He has always been fiery but now it's ridiculous - he snaps at me, DCs and the dog for hardly any reason and shouts really loudly at me. He calls me a stupid woman, an idiot or tells me to shut up on an almost daily basis. He is often away with work and I don't work any more and it was supposed to make things easier but now it's even worse as he now never does anything useful with the DCs. I know I don't have to get up to go to work but it would be nice if I was allowed to go to the supermarket on my own just once in a while. He makes such a fuss about looking after DCs for an hour that it's just easier to take them with me. When he's at home he tends to just sit on the computer (yes, I see the irony!) and puts the TV on for DCs. He would never do any activities with them - colouring, painting, baking, going on a walk, taking them to a club etc. The most difficult things are to do with his opinion on my level of strictness with DCs and money. He constantly tells me that I don't discipline our DCs but the difference is that I don't just shout incessantly at them about nothing in particular. I can't get DS to nap in his bed anymore as DH has shouted so often about putting DCs in bed when they are naughty that he says "but I haven't been naughty" and cries. This week I've been trying to organise our summer holiday and have emailed him a few ideas as he's been away with work. He rang and was really grumpy about it and said "you just do whatever you like" in a stroppy teenager way. He is obsessed with hoarding money and checks our bank balance every day and quizzes me on what I have spent money on. I haven't bought anything for myself for ages and the only money I spend is on food, bills and DCs' clothes. He got really annoyed with me about the money I spent at Christmas, even though the majority of it for his family. I really do still love him and I don't want to break up the family but I can't go on with this. Does it sound like he needs some kind of stress / anger management counselling? Any helpful advice welcome!

HecatePropolos Thu 03-Jan-13 10:39:27

Why do you put up with it?

ilikebaking Thu 03-Jan-13 10:44:44

It sounds like he needs some sort of therapy... and a kick up the bum. Should realise how lucky he is! Wife and kiddies who love him and money and a roof over his head. A lot people are a worse off.

ErikNorseman Thu 03-Jan-13 10:45:30

The only advice you need is to leave him and remove your kids from his toxic influence.

dequoisagitil Thu 03-Jan-13 10:47:24

I think you need to think about the damage your dh is doing to the dc - it's awful that your ds can't nap because he associates his bed with punishment & shouting. sad

Your dh is financially, verbally and emotionally abusing you. No matter what his stress levels are, there is no excuse for using you, the dc & the poor bloody dog as his emotional punchbags.

LucyLego Thu 03-Jan-13 10:48:57

I'm not giving up on him. I suspect that he is suffering from depression and needs some form of help. If someone with a similar or professional experience could offer some constructive advice I would be grateful.

pictish Thu 03-Jan-13 10:49:05

What do you love about him? List his good points as they are right now - not how he used to be, but as he is in the present.
What's to love?

He's a bully, he's verbally abusive to his family, he is domineering, he is financially abusing you, and he's a shit dad.

What is it you love?

pictish Thu 03-Jan-13 10:50:30

Depression is no excuse or explanation whatsoever, so stop telling yourself it is.

Depression does not cause people to be abusive. He chooses to be because he thinks he's entitled to be.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Thu 03-Jan-13 10:56:15

Does it sound like he needs some kind of stress / anger management counselling? Any helpful advice welcome!

You can't help him, you can only help yourself (and you should: you are clearly miserable).

Likewise, only he can help himself. But it doesn't sound like he wants to: he has no incentive to change, does he? This situation is of his making and suits him just fine.

I really do still love him and I don't want to break up the family but I can't go on with this.

You are going to have to prioritise one of those two things, as they are incompatible. Either look out for your needs and your happiness, or stay in this marriage. By what you describe, staying in this marriage AND being happy are not possible.

dequoisagitil Thu 03-Jan-13 10:56:32

You can't fix him yourself. You can ask him to go to the GP as a starting point, to get medication, therapy or counselling if he is suffering depression.

If he won't, what will you do?

HecatePropolos Thu 03-Jan-13 10:58:42

He's making your children cry and affecting their quality of life.

At some point, you have to think beyond him and about them. Think how it feels to grow up with a parent who is always yelling at you.

You can't always help someone. If they won't help themselves, there comes a point when there is nothing more you can do.

you want replies only from people who have experience? - I have been depressed. I have tried to kill myself. I have been an inpatient in a mental health unit. Experience enough for you?

You should NOT stay with someone who abuses you. It is harmful to you. It is harmful to your children.

pictish Thu 03-Jan-13 10:59:52

He has always been fiery <- very very telling.

he snaps at me, DCs and the dog for hardly any reason and shouts really loudly at me. He calls me a stupid woman, an idiot or tells me to shut up on an almost daily basis

it would be nice if I was allowed to go to the supermarket on my own just once in a while

He makes such a fuss about looking after DCs for an hour that it's just easier to take them with me

He would never do any activities with them - colouring, painting, baking, going on a walk, taking them to a club etc

I can't get DS to nap in his bed anymore as DH has shouted so often about putting DCs in bed when they are naughty that he says "but I haven't been naughty" and cries

He is obsessed with hoarding money and checks our bank balance every day and quizzes me on what I have spent money on

Mate - none of this has anything to do with depression, and everything to do with your husband being a fucking shit.

LucyLego Thu 03-Jan-13 11:00:20

He knows he's not happy - he doesn't want to behave like this bit he just can't control himself. I think he would go to see someone if I made it a fair accompli as opposed to a suggestion.

pictish Thu 03-Jan-13 11:01:53

He can control himself.
Does he call his boss an idiot and shout at him to shut up? His mother? His friends?
No. No he doesn't.

He can control himself. He just thinks that when it comes to you, he doesn't have to.

balia Thu 03-Jan-13 11:02:45

Very important to accept that you can't change him, or make him accept he needs to change. And at the moment, there is no problem for him - he gets to behave exactly the way he chooses, with no consequence.

You can take more honest control over the things you can change, though. Perhaps counselling/assertiveness training for yourself. If you stop accepting unacceptable behaviour, and make it clear that shouting incessantly at DC's is not OK, he may re-evaluate. Think of it as tough love.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Thu 03-Jan-13 11:02:52

How do you plan to make it a fait accompli?

(And yes he can control himself, by the way. He and only he is responsible for his own actions and for the words that come out of his own mouth. He is not a puppet being controlled by some invisible puppeteer: it's all him.)

NicknameTaken Thu 03-Jan-13 11:03:48

Ready Lundy Bancroft, "Why does he do that?" (second time I've recommended it this morning!)

You don't want to give up on him because you think "oh poor him, he doesn't want to be like this, he must be helped!"

What the book will show you is that he does want to be like this, because he benefits a lot from your misery. He never has to do anything he doesn't want to, he gets the pleasant relief of taking his stress out on those weaker than him, who can't do anything about it, it's a rather nice little set-up he's got going on.

Lundy Bancroft also talks a lot about whether someone can change and how you'll know if he has done so. Please read it - it will really help you to take a clear-eyed look at the situation and see what to do about it.

HecatePropolos Thu 03-Jan-13 11:03:49

He can't control himself?

That must make his life very difficult indeed.

How many times has he been arrested for abusing people in the street?

How many jobs has he lost because he screams at his boss?

How many times has he refused to engage with co-workers?

How many times has he been disciplined for quizzing his manager on how the company is run?

How many times have the police cautioned him for accosting someone on the bus and screaming abuse at them?

How many times has he got in his boss's face and screamed at them that they are stupid?

How many times has he gone up to a policeman and screamed at them to shut up?

dequoisagitil Thu 03-Jan-13 11:03:49

OK, try it. Book him an appointment with the GP.

You say he can't control himself, he knows he's not happy. Does he admit the damage he is doing to you and the dc? What is going on is very very wrong - your dc shouldn't be treated like this.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Thu 03-Jan-13 11:05:58

Does it sound like he needs some kind of stress / anger management counselling?

There's a book by a professional counsellor designed to answer your questions: Why does he do that?: Insde the minds of angry and controlling men

pictish Thu 03-Jan-13 11:07:37

What the book will show you is that he does want to be like this, because he benefits a lot from your misery. He never has to do anything he doesn't want to, he gets the pleasant relief of taking his stress out on those weaker than him, who can't do anything about it, it's a rather nice little set-up he's got going on.

Absolutely.

I also thoroughly recommend you read it OP. Poor man just can't control himself...it's not his fault...he doesn't mean to be nasty.

He can control himself and he wholly means to be nasty. It benefits him to be so, as he has you all dancing to his tune.

MrsTomHardy Thu 03-Jan-13 11:09:23

Sorry OP but I agree with the others.

He is abusive!
Is he willing to seek help in any way?

LeavingNewYork Thu 03-Jan-13 11:10:51

My dh suffers from depression. Before he started on ADs he would be grumpy, it got to the point where there was a bit of an atmosphere, and he became very defensive and did not cope with stressful situations well.

He never did any of the things you have listed though, OP

HotDAMNlifeisgood Thu 03-Jan-13 11:11:09

Can I also say that I am very sorry that you and the DC are living like this, and are in such distress (your poor DS seeing naps as punishment sad )

You all deserve better.

LucyLego Thu 03-Jan-13 11:13:06

I wasn't really asking you (complete strangers) to post comments about what a bastard DH is. I was looking for people who know how to take positive steps forward and can offer constructive advice. I know what a toll the events of the last few years have taken on him and I know that the person I married is still there because as times he shines through. He can be wonderfully kind and when he is relaxed he is a fantastic father. He is under a huge amount of pressure from many sources and I want to help him to help himself to deal better with those stresses. I'm pretty sure that's what the marriage vows promise.

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