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I just don't know what to make of my marriage - need outside views

(16 Posts)
pinterestprincipessa Sun 16-Jun-13 08:18:13

Sometimes I think it's fine. Other times, that I've made a huge mistake and am wasting my life.

I was in a very abusive relationship then single for 6 years before I met DH. I truly thought he was my saviour, my knight in shining armour, and for a long time he was- kind, caring, amazing in bed, felt like the love of my life.

We got married after 2.5 years and he became SD to my dd. He has a ds of his own from a previous relationship who stays at weekends. We have 2 dcs of our own, who are 4 and 2.

After about 6 months of marriage I began to realise he wasn't the knight in armour I thought. He was cruel and verbally abusive in arguments and seemed immune when he made me cry - would just sit there, or actually go out and leave me in tears. Things like "you make nice people nasty" and hinting that I would never find a nice partner because it was impossible to be nice to someone like me. I fell into a bad depression which was very out of character and spent most of 2008 in bed, crying. He didn't try to help in the way I think I would support a partner with depression. Would often say nasty things and make it worse. I then got pregnant with dc and that seemed to stop the depression but he has just got angrier and unkinder over the years. He is a very negative person and seems to enjoy being miserable.

He never joins me in being excited and happy about things and sucks the enthusiasm and excitement out of everything, from holidays to Xmas. He has spoilt many special days such as birthdays and holidays and Xmases with his bad temper and miserable outlook.

He is not a great SD to dd, often picks on her and starts arguments although she is very difficult at her age. At other times though he is great with her. Just depends on his mood.But he is a fanastic dad to the youngest two and they completely adore him.

To give real examples, in the last few weeks he;
- Called (to me, not them) our dd and her friends 'fucking cunts' for making a noise at a sleepover-
-Shouted and sworn at me and eldest dd and made us both cry
- In a rage threw a toy so hard into the bath it hit 4 year old dd and made her cry.

NOTHING is ever his fault. ANY bad things he does are always, always because I provoked him. I do not think he is capable of remorse or shame. He is one of life's victims and never takes responsibility for behaving badly - it's always, I'm sorry for doing that BUT you really upset me.

He can be great, he is a great dad to youngest dc and they would be heartbroken if we split up. DD would miss him too, I know she loves him. He can be a great husband, does a lot for me (but always in a very martyrish way - he does this thing where he scurries around a bit tidying up and says, yes love, whatever you want love, what do you want me to do now for you love" and makes me feel like a bully and a monster when all I want is for him to be nice, and happy, and kind all the time - not weirdly subservient half the time and foul tempered and angry the other half. I don't know what to do - he was horrible yesterday and went out leaving me in tears. He only makes me happy half the time - is that enough?

Bluecarrot Sun 16-Jun-13 08:23:08

No, it's definately not enough and you know it, even if its hard to really admit it to yourself. You need to be making very urgent plans to get you and your kids somewhere safe. X

At very minimum he needs help with his anger issues, but you do not need to be made to feel awful while he works on HIS problems

In short, no. He is emotionally abusing you and your DC, and he physically hurt your DS in anger. He knew he was in the bath, he just didn't care.

His behaviour is controlling, bullying and abusive. You all deserve so much better and you need to get this nasty man away from your children and you. I can't help thinking that your DD is probably difficult BECAUSE of the way he treats her and the rest of the family. Please get this man away from your children.

MatersMate Sun 16-Jun-13 08:26:17

it wouldn't be enough for me love. he sounds like an abusive unpredictable bully to me.

yes your kids love him, they could still love him if you were apart though. being happy half the time, while still working about when it will all change again it's no way to live, and as the kids get older his ways will certainly affect them.

itwillgetbettersoon Sun 16-Jun-13 08:26:59

Hi Op, from what you have written he really doesn't sound like a nice person at all. Infact he sounds like a bully and is very nasty. If he was your daighter's partner would you bee happy with the way he treated her? Your depression was probably as a result of his behaviour.

If he was to move out your children would still see and love their father. However they would have a happy mummy at home. Hugs to you - I think you know what to do. X

NutellaLawson Sun 16-Jun-13 08:28:23

Your married to an immature child who will never grow up. I think you know already what you need to do. You now just need to make that leap.

You might be surprised at how your children feel about him. My mum stayed with my dad 'for the sake of the kids' but in fact all three of us felt dad brought the whole family down because he was either grumpy or (occasionally) violent or (at best) disengaged from the family. We WANTED her to leave him.

juneau Sun 16-Jun-13 08:31:46

He sounds horrible. Sorry. I know you want to hear something else, but he's abusive and angry and unless he changes (anger management therapy perhaps? anti-depressants?), I can't see you ever being happy with this man or him being a fundamentally 'nice' person. Helping around the house while making a big song and dance and you having to ask each time is not being helpful, it's being a git. Listen to your inner voice - you wouldn't have come on here and written this big post if it wasn't already shouting at you.

juneau Sun 16-Jun-13 08:33:30

You might be surprised at how your children feel about him. My mum stayed with my dad 'for the sake of the kids' but in fact all three of us felt dad brought the whole family down because he was either grumpy or (occasionally) violent or (at best) disengaged from the family. We WANTED her to leave him.

^and this. I hated my SD growing up. He was moody, violent, verbally and physically abusive. I'd have hung the bloody flags out if my DM had had the balls to leave, but she never did.

bakingaddict Sun 16-Jun-13 08:37:36

Sorry OP but great dads don't scream, shout and throw toys directed at 4yr olds neither do they refer to any children as 'fucking cunts'.

Don't have your DC growing up walking on egg shells because of his moods, believe me they will when they get older, children miss out on a childhood when a parent is like this. Give them a safe, happy environment where this man isn't a part of it

MillyMollyMandy78 Sun 16-Jun-13 08:44:46

He sounds awful. Did you post on here so that we would confirm what you already knew deep down? Try reading your post back to yourself and imagining it was written by a friend/ mum/ sister. What would you advise them to do? Would you want this or a better life for them?

bragmatic Sun 16-Jun-13 08:50:59

My abusive stepfather was often nice to me too. I liked him. A lot. But I was scared of him and modified my behaviour when he was around.

I often think I was hoodwinked, much like a battered women is. "I know how to handle him/he's stressed/I shouldn't have.../everyone likes him.../he's a popular guy." I want to go back in time and give myself a good old bollocking.

ofmiceandmen Sun 16-Jun-13 09:07:31

Outsiders view:

Firstly before you read this - please note: THIS IS NOT YOUR FAULT!!. HIS BEHAVIOUR IS HIS UNACCEPTABLE!

Now to show some balance:

We often forget that when we go through depression we leave a scar on our partners. i may have read the timeline wrong but it does seem the shift from caring, nice guy to abusive individual took place around the time you started the first steps into depression, then into pregnancy and beyond. I don't think he was mature/developed enough to cope with the emotional you. You're not the same person he fell in love with- we all grow but his feelings haven't grown. He fell for a cheerful, worry free, etc woman and hasn't been able to adjust.

He hasn't recovered from that. Like a kid who cant cope with his mothers crying he is lashing out, at you, at the DC's etc.

He's in way over his head and has been asking you to leave solve it without realising it.

Sometimes on these forums people over think behaviour - in most cases when a man mistreats you it means he is trying to get you to leave him rather than have the balls to leave himself. His SD probably represents the reason why he couldn't and his birth DC represent the 'at least I got wonderful DC from this.

ofmiceandmen Sun 16-Jun-13 09:15:41

PS - my post is not a 'hug an abuser' post. but simply looking into the behavioural pattern and when it started.

People who distance themselves and show passive and agressive behaviour are often trying to push the people they are with away from them.

Like the chap who doesn't love his girlfriend and treats her like shit because he can and doesn't care if she does leave - in-fact thats what he actually wants. but then she stays and it becomes a pattern. Then he starts to feed of it (ego, insecurity when no one else really wants him, comfort).

So you need to have the talk - adapt/change dear husband or we can't do this anymore. I am ready to leave.
Then if it's more of the same : you have your answer.

tribpot Sun 16-Jun-13 09:24:36

I read it as the abuse pre-dating the depression rather than the other way around.

However, nothing excuses this man's appalling and unacceptable behaviour. His behaviour to your oldest child alone is enough reason to tell him to pack his bags. It's unclear whether he is more abusive to your dd1 because she is not his child, or because she is older. Your littlest two are not yet able to stand up to him, really. Either way, they all deserve better than to have to live in this environment.

I think you've fallen for the old trap of comparing the level of abuse in your previous relationship to the level of abuse in this one, and concluding that because this one isn't as bad, it's acceptable. It isn't.

LEMisdisappointed Sun 16-Jun-13 09:27:17

When i read your thread title i was expecting a post about a man who is maybe a little emotionally detached and not doing things together. Honey, i don't really think you need outside perspectives, you have written it all down there - read it back to yourself. He certainly is not a knight in shining armour, he is a controlling bully who saw your vulnerability and used it against you.

OxfordBags Sun 16-Jun-13 09:51:55

As soon as I read that you thought he was your knight in shining armour at first, I knew precisely what the rest of your post would entail. And I was sadly right. This man falls into a real stereotype of a certain type of abuser. He wants to sweep you off your feet, feel the glamour and excitement and passion of first love and sexual attraction, feel the ego boost of 'saving' a woman and making her feel wonderful BUT he cannot cope with real life or with you being a real human being with needs that are outside of what he will get a kick out of fulfilling. He is deeply flawed, deeply inadequate, deeply lacking. Deeply broken in ways that you, or any other woman, cannot, will not and should not be able to fix. It's doubtful that he could fix himself. He is massively self-obsessed, which is why he does that martyr act when expected to behave and pull his weight, and why he was so vile and unhelpful when you were depressed, or why he is horrible so often in general. You and the Dc merely exist as objects in his workd, that either please and aid him, or hinder him.

His behaviour is very abusive. I despair when I read over and over again women using the 'but the children love him' reason for not leaving, when growing up with an abusive parent destroys children, setting them up at worst to be either victims of abuse or abusers themselves, or at 'best', deeply messed-up, mistrusting of others, unhappy, etc.

Children will also always appear to adore an abusive parent, it's a classic coping mechanism. They think that if they act adoring and try to act in ways that will please/delight/interest/flatter the abusive parent, then that oarent will be happy and not turn their abuse on them. This also sets them up for terrible dynamics in adult relationships, learning how to only placate and keep sweet and deny their own needs and feelings and character.

Shouting and swearing and throwing things at you or the DC is abuse. He should not be in your home. He is not fit to be a parent.

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