Note: Mumsnetters don't necessarily have the qualifications or experience to offer relationships counselling or to provide help in cases of domestic violence. Mumsnet can't be held responsible for any advice given on the site. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

What do you think about this reaction? Especially if you hate confrontations

(86 Posts)
FeelsSad Sun 03-Mar-13 13:13:10

What would you do in a scenario such as the one below?

Something happens that has upset your partner/husband/wife very much. So much that he/she decides to just get out of the house for some fresh air and doesn't come back for a good 45 minutes. On his/her return, said partner looks upset/hurt/like he/she has been crying.

What would you do on her return?

What would you do if you know that asking what's going on will mean he/she is likely to tell you what is wrong and it is likely to have something to do with you?

Ipp3 Mon 04-Mar-13 15:55:11

I suppose I would try to do what I thought the person wanted, as long as I did not feel manipulated. (been in a friendship like that and never going back!)

Personally I like dh to leave me alone when I am upset. Has taken a long time for him to realise that pestering me to talk when I am still too emotional makes things worse. I prefer to be alone, rest and doing something to calm my mind before dealing with things.

TheSeniorWrangler Mon 04-Mar-13 16:36:31

I'm not being a dick about anything.

Walking out in a strop, then coming back while still upset and disappearing upstairs and expecting me to come and ask whats wrong is childish and passive aggressive.

I'm not going to do it.

If we have had an argument and something i have done/not done or said has upset him then i dont mind if he wants to walk away and calm down, but then i expect him to come back and say "When you did X it upset me" so we can address it like adults.

I cannot stand people who mope around with tear stained cheeks who wait for you to go "Aw.. sweetheart, whats the matter?" Either tell me what the matter is so we can help fix it or go cry somewhere else.

If its NOT to do with an argument or anything, then of course i will go and ask what the matter is and offer comfort and a hug and be solicitous..

but if its over a spat/argument/fallout, then i expect it to be dealt with like adults and for us to be proactive and to communicate to fix it.

I wouldn't have said you were being a dick TheSeniorWrangler, but when I read your posts I thought you were seriously lacking in empathy. As were many of the other responses/responders.

When I read the OP, I read it as the posting of someone who was still very upset, and made allowances accordingly. Many didn't, and IMO seemed to be having a go at the OP.

1charlie1 Mon 04-Mar-13 18:08:44

I think you would find counseling with your DH very helpful. My DH and I both have sets of DPs whose communication within their marriages are dysfunctional, swinging between PA, and explosive anger. Before we married, we had a lot of counseling about how to avoid repeating these patterns in our own relationship. But with the best will in the world (which he has), DH would not notice if I was upset without very clear evidence (tears). And even then, if I was in tears, but not communicating clearly why (i.e. if I was storming about, leaving the house etc.), he would likely not come within a mile of me. However, if I say 'I'm feeling upset about [X], can we have a chat?' he is so on board!
It is interesting that you find the 'When you do x, it makes me feel why' 'rigid and unnatural.' While it might not be the most passionate or dramatic way to express one's emotions, I lived with a DM whose theatrical expressions of displeasure caused huge domestic discord, and enormous anxiety to her DCs. I think the phrase 'when you do X, I feel why' is one of the fairest, clearest and most adult ways to communicate the consequences of anothers' behaviour, and to resolve conflict.

ItsAFuckingVase Mon 04-Mar-13 18:15:07

I think there's probably a time and place to have such a conversation. I doubt that over lunch with the kids is either, tbh.

You both sound very childish - I really don't understand how somebody who claims to be so calm and level headed can get so worked up over your DH not speaking when you ask him to pass the bread. Your OP was laced with drama, so it's hardly surprising that your DH doesn't want to confront the issue.

FWIW, if I were your DH I'd have done exactly the same and carried on having lunch with the children. It isn't mind games, it's being an adult.

1charlie1 Mon 04-Mar-13 18:18:41

OP, I just reread my post, and I don't mean to suggest that you are a theatrical stormer! All I meant was: don't be too down on that simple, uncomplicated phrase. It has been a breath of fresh air to DH and I, so blessedly functional and eloquent!

AThingInYourLife Mon 04-Mar-13 18:32:50

"but if its over a spat/argument/fallout, then i expect it to be dealt with like adults and for us to be proactive and to communicate to fix it."

Adults are kind.

They see other adults they love are upset and they try to find out what is wrong.

They don't expect everyone to abide by strict rules of "adulthood" set by themselves that suit their way of thinking.

Adults accept that some people deal with arguments differently and that being kind and forgiving and open to dialogue avoids big arguments as well as fixing them where they can't be avoided.

You seem to be confusing adults with teenagers.

Who think that they are always right and that everyone else needs to learn to do things their way.

MiniTheMinx Mon 04-Mar-13 18:43:52

Living with someone with aspergers is both fascinating and frustrating. Dp is very caring and works in a role where he needs quite a lot of empathy. Something he has actively worked on and been trained in is counselling and something called DBT, so lack of empathy and inability to read emotions is not always beyond the realms of possibility. Learned as a skill and not perfect by any means.

He will forget that I have seen the doctor, fallen over or been to a funeral whilst being able to recount the entire script for the Life of Brian. If I tell him "I've been to a funeral" this then elicits his learned response liberally and generously applied. Some times it is hard to remember not to confuse this with disingenuous posturing. The very funny things that happen, the very odd way of seeing things and the humour make up for it though.

Good luck OP, DX or not maybe you need to find a way to speak very directly and he needs to acknowledge your needs....if need be, literally give him the operating manual, " I say this.......you say that" it works because knowing explicitly what is expected often helps people with AS to cope.

TheSeniorWrangler Mon 04-Mar-13 19:21:42

I'm not making up rules, we agreed in our own councelling to communicate.

Him storming off and then sulking until i ask whats wrong is not communicating, its giving him the opening to go on the offensive and putting me on the back foot of having to defend myself against whatever he feels i've done wrong.

FeelsSad Tue 05-Mar-13 08:30:58

Wow didn't think that I would cause so much controversy!

Not sure what to say tbh....

To whoever said I was still clearly upset when I posted initially, yes that's right. I was extremely upset. Hence not making much sense. I hope I can be forgiven for that and not made up to be a crazy woman for a one off time where I lost my calm (as it can happen to anyone else). I would also hope that my posts from yesterday would have shown that too.

To people who think it's just an issue of not answering to 'Can you pass me the bread?' well actually you have it all wrong. It's much much more than that. It's an accumulation of things, all perhaps small in some ways but draining in the long run. Beside, I am sure few people would accept to get no answers again and again to their 'simple' questions because that would be just plain rude tbh.

Louge and Mini thank you for your kind responses. The more I think about it, the more I realized that this weekend was about my reactions to the dcs behaviour and how can I handle the impact of DH on the dcs. I might pop to the SN board about that.

FeelsSad Tue 05-Mar-13 09:38:11

TheSenior may I point out that
1- the rules you have agreed with your DH are your rules and might not fit everyone else
2- Even if you have agreed to these rules, they might need some time to time to be bend according to circumstances

I would agree with you that someone who * repeatedly* storms out in a mood might be a drama queen. It might be that it was your DH (or yours) way to reacting and was not appropriate to a good relationship.

However this is a very different ball game when this is an extremely rare incident and out of character. This would be the sign that something really wrong with the person going away and that person has been deeply hurt (whatever the reason, even it looks deeply inoffensive to you!). Hence it would require a different type of reaction than ignoring.

I would also argue that both people in a couple should be treated (and react) as adults. So one person acting as the 'parent' (ie I am not going to speak to you until you behave properly and stop being childish) isn't much more appropriate than one acting in a child like manner (eg by being a drama queen).
But even in that case, as we are all humans, with strong emotions, allowing for the occasional lapse in 'behaving like an adult' I think is OK too....

You see that's the problem here. the same I have with my dcs. having rules is good... until you follow them so rigidly they actually become an issue.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now