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I feel like a fool. Am I?

(130 Posts)
4paws Wed 06-Feb-13 11:12:02

I am a SAHM and living overseas for the last 18 months. My youngest is now 3 and where we are living is OK. I can put up with it for a while longer!

My DH works hard and really enjoys his job, which is great. He doesn't work at weekends, and is good with the DCs. During the week, he hardly sees them, he's up early, and back late. By late I mean 8pm at the earliest mon-fri. The last few months he always seems to be late at night, meeting colleagues for dinner, going out for team drinks, presentation to prepare so he'll be back late. Drinks seem to mean 1am, dinner, 11pm, report to write, 9:30pm. It may all be true, I have no idea, no way of knowing. I don't think he is cheating (Lord knows everyone says that) but why he is he out every night? I know the jobs market is really tough at the moment (tho I've been out of it too long) and I know that he is really into his job and really like socialising with colleagues.

Clearly, what he's not into is spending time at home with me. I feel like an idiot because I have no idea ever where he is, what he is doing. If I am lucky I get an "oh, i'll be late home tonight" but that is it. This isn't my idea of family life, this isn't my idea of a relationship. I feel silly for thinking that I want to leave and to disrupt the DC's, but I also feel that this lifestyle is all lovely for him and it would be v easy for him to cheat, and the gullible fool at home wouldn't know. Or I am just paranoid and controlling.

I have spent years feeling unloved and ignored. I have been unhappy because he doesn't communicate, where he is, or answer his phone/texts whereas my argument is that when I was pg or with small DCs, he should answer, he should check, because he should be concerned that we were all ok, and actually he doesn't worry about it all.

Sorry for rambling

Fairenuff Fri 08-Feb-13 08:18:12

He may have a wonderful, high paying job with great prospects, but it's not making you happy is it. I expect you'd be happier sharing a jacket pototato and baked beans with a man who loved you, respected you, admired you and you could have a laugh with. Someone who cherised you and wanted to grow old with you.

It really is the simple things in life that make us happy.

You won't be happy with this man whatever your circumstances. You could be rich together, poor together, alone on a desert island together. He still would not respect you because he truly believes you are a second class citizen and there to service his needs. If you weren't there, he would get someone else to do it.

Sorry, but it's no use waiting for him to change, wishing he would do x, y, z. It isn't going to happen.

Putting his existence aside. If he weren't on this earth at all and you just had to consider yourself. What would you do? What do you want for yourself?

Take some time to think about your own needs, without looking to him for answers. Then start making some plans, get legal advice, get financial advice, get busy getting your life back.

Mimishimi Fri 08-Feb-13 05:22:44

What does he say when you ask him where he has been at midnight? At one stage my DH was ,for months, regularly out of the house from about 7am to 9pm. I felt like a single mum. It was horrible and really put a strain on the relationship. He was always completely upfront with me about where and what he was doing though. I don't think I could have borne it had he not been.

Abitwobblynow Thu 07-Feb-13 19:20:10

PS and start squirrelling money NOW.

mummytime Thu 07-Feb-13 19:02:26

It all depends on the country, but make sure you know your rights, and don't give him hints that you may leave/take the children; whilst you make your plans.

Could you stay in the country you are in? Would you want to?
Where would your choices/career options be better?

Good luck!

Abitwobblynow Thu 07-Feb-13 18:54:16

Hi, another expat here, I read the awful re-run of my life (almost word for word) with foreboding, and sorry I have to tell you he is f ing someone.

Really sorry 4paws, but even post affair my H has been revealed to be selfish, emotionally unavailable, and the workaholic is a cover to keep distance.

It doesn't matter. After terrible pain and suffering I now don't care any more and am getting on with life.

You have two choices: return home to UK, or start developing a life there. Do you have home help? Can you volunteer for anything? One thing leads to another.

But in both of those options STOP looking to him for connection and emotional support, because you won't get it (and if you look back) you never had it.

AgathaF Thu 07-Feb-13 18:52:44

He is self-obsessed. His ego is sky high. It's all me, me, me. Full of his own self-importance.

I don't think it's relevant whether or not he is having an affair. This behabiour is not a new thing. It's unnacceptable.

Charbon Thu 07-Feb-13 18:16:07

I've just read this thread all in one go and I'm sorry, but I think it's obvious, especially as his late arrivals home have got worse in recent times.

He's having an affair.

DrGarnettsWinterMixture Thu 07-Feb-13 18:10:28

I want to say unless a important meeting with the boss, he has to prove his commitment by coming home at normal time but you've given him his get out of jail free card-they'll ALL be important meetings with the boss now!

Lueji Thu 07-Feb-13 18:07:40

At the very very least he should be taking you to some of this stuff and getting a baby sitter.

The issue is that he really doesn't seem to care about you, other than having a housekeeper and a nanny for the children he has to entertain him and give him some status.

4paws Thu 07-Feb-13 17:32:14

Letsmake Thank you. It gives me hope. And reinforces my thinking that I need more than 30 quid, as I can see him being petty.

4paws Thu 07-Feb-13 17:25:24

No nothing glamorous at all. Except he's now at a high enough level to get work jollies and fancy restaurants and stuff. It's not that high level, tho he meets some millionaires and I see he wants that. I think deep down, he really thinks he is marvellous. His family are so proud of him, the success he's had. I don't disagree, he's a solid, reliable worker, people like him

Letsmakecookies Thu 07-Feb-13 17:22:00

Don't be terrified about packing and starting over again.

My xh behaved similarly, we moved around a lot for the first 5 years of my eldest's life, including a two year stint abroad. He chose to stay out late most nights, 'working', in his case it was working, networking, drinking, actually I have no idea what he was doing or who he was with as he never told me and would not answer his phone, by the time he got home there was no point asking as it would just lead to a drunken fight. For the first few years I confronted him and we fought, and then I started trying to make life 'fun' at home so he would want to be there. It was a really really painful way to exist and I got very lonely, stressed and depressed.

I finally hit rock bottom and had some counselling, and eventually after a year of therapy set down some boundaries regarding his behaviour. I realised how abusive and controlling the situation was, and how he had no respect for me at all. He couldn't cope with my boundaries which he termed 'ultimatums' and he stormed out to teach me a lesson and I locked the door firmly behind him.

The calm I experience every evening is amazing, not sitting waiting for someone to finally come home (often drunk, always moody). It is like a huge weight had been lifted and I could breathe. I could never go back to that life again, it was like living with constant chinese water torture. And it was bad for the children, really bad. No way at all for them to learn about relationships. I had a father who worked really long hours and I still saw him often enough and got cuddles and stories before bed, and I saw him adore my mother.

Once my xh left though his disdain for me became a lot worse. He told me he was not interested in raising the children at all, which is a good thing I guess (although my heart broke for them when he said that). But financially he felt everything was his, he left me with £30 and a tank of petrol. Telling family and friends was a strong experience, as I realised I had people in my life who loved me and what that means.

I am so much happier now and rebuilding my life. It is not easy but at least I can imagine a future that is good. And I don't miss him at all. I feel grief and sadness, but I think mostly for what I went through.

My DS' dad, who is not my partner, has a demanding, time-consuming and important job (don't want to out him but it is charity-related and he's very good at it). This doesn't stop him taking time off when I need him to look after DS, whether that's for health reasons or because I want to go and party.
4Paws, is your wretched H's job something entertainment-related and 'glamorous', and is that why he thinks he's King Cock and the rest of his family must worship him?

4paws Thu 07-Feb-13 17:16:36

AF did make me snort. grin Harsh but fair, and I'm sure I've already tried that in the past and it only makes me interesting short-term and then, like you say, humiliated. sad.

I think I did give it 'both barrels' about 6 months ago. Nothings changed. Since then I have started detaching emotionally, I don't expect he will be home during the week, and not constantly hoping, and wondering if he'll be back soon has helped me. I'm not a rock tho, and it pains me, it hurts.

I need some time to fish for documents and make a plan for what I'd do if it's just me and the kids and he cuts off the money.

I'm tempted to disappear for a day or 2, and see what happens. I also want to spell it out one last time. I want to say unless a important meeting with the boss, he has to prove his commitment by coming home at normal time (I'm not sure what time that is, but i could check what his colleagues do) and see what happens over the next couple of weeks. If he doesn't or doesn't last longer than 2 weeks well, then I know for definite nothing will change.

Thank you for all your support. As my first dip into RL was not positive, I'm worried my family will not be supportive either "You've made your bed/You've got no job/you'll be broke and all alone/No man is perfect-this one just works too hard/you're being ridiculous etc etc

carlywurly Thu 07-Feb-13 16:15:32

I think if you want to save this, you need to let him have it with both barrels, explain exactly why you're not prepared to tolerate this shit any longer and see if anything changes as a result. if not, I don't think I'd bother engaging with him at all tbh.

I definitely wouldn't go the stepford wife route, it never works unless you're prepared to sacrifice your dignity and happiness to please him.

Get yourself a decent counsellor (your friends advice is well intentioned rubbish IMO) and some legal advice too.

Lueji Thu 07-Feb-13 14:53:03

As for childcare, I questioned him on it recently, and yet he does not respect me for being SAHM. Yep, it's useful, someone has to do it (bit like filling the dog bowl) but ultimately unimportant. Whereas his career...

Behind every great man...
Even if he considers his career that important, he must realise you are enabling it.
It would be worth leaving one monday morning before anyone wakes up, to spend the day at a spa and see what he thinks of that.

AgathaF Thu 07-Feb-13 14:36:02

Not impressed with your friends advice. He's a grown man with a family and responsibilities. He should want to be home, not have to be enticed like a toddler.

What to do next. Can you copy all the documents you may need in the future - bank statements, shares, pensions stuff, mortgage stuff etc. I'm sure others who have been in the same situation will be able to give you sound advice, but this for a start.

DrGarnettsWinterMixture Thu 07-Feb-13 14:16:56

Oh, AF got there way ahead of me and in far fewer words blush

DrGarnettsWinterMixture Thu 07-Feb-13 14:16:05

OP, your home life is just normal, fun sometimes, hard work at others. It is absolutely NOT your job to make it 'fun' for your DH-please don't listen to your friend on this. It's belittling to try to entice another adult to do what most of us do automatically-come home as soon as we can after work, because it's where the people we love the most are.

What do you think your friend actually meant by fun, anyway? More sex, better meals, better behaved children, circus skills workshop in the back garden? I'd rather be alone with dignity than have to bribe my husband to come and be amused with specially organised activities. You are worth so much more than this.

targaryen24 Thu 07-Feb-13 14:15:05

he's rolling in whenever he feels like it and treating you like you're worth nothing...not even a tiny explanation of where the hell he's been. The longer it continues, the worse you're going to feel i'm afraid. You can tell from your posts that the situation has already ground you down a lot. Only you can change it for the better...by removing yourself. You're worth SO much more than this brew

CartedOff Thu 07-Feb-13 14:11:25

By that post I didn't mean go ahead and do it, just make sure you don't do anything that puts you on the wrong side of the law.

CartedOff Thu 07-Feb-13 14:10:28

I'm not sure where you are in the world (sorry if you've already said) but if you're thinking of just leaving with the children I would look into the legalities of removing them from the country without telling him. I wouldn't do anything rash.

I'm so sorry you're in this position.

AnyFucker Thu 07-Feb-13 14:06:36

Love, talk to your family. Stop pretending to people that everything is fine and that he is a good husband

It isn't and he is certainly not

AnyFucker Thu 07-Feb-13 14:04:15

Please don't take your friends advice to try and make yourself more interesting, you are ok as you are

Putting a bit of lippy on, giving him more blow jobs and forcing him to spend time that he doesn't want with you is completely humiliating

targaryen24 Thu 07-Feb-13 14:03:13

YOU should make more effort?

Pretty sure that is not the problem... hmm

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