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It's a losing battle trying to keep DP happy (housework, kids, work etc)

(76 Posts)
SlugBotherer Mon 15-Jul-13 09:31:38

God I don't even know where to start but I feel like it's a constant uphill struggle trying to keep my dp happy.
One issue is the house. I've never been houseproud (probably because I've never had a house to be proud of) but we've just bought a beautiful house and I love it so much - I am very proud of it and I constantly clean and tidy it yet DP will always find something I've not done. Like the time I spent all day cleaning the bathrooms, bedrooms, living room, sorting everyone's clothes wash and iron, rearranging the dining room - dp complains that I'd left a medical card on the living room floor. Yesterday it came to a head when dp went in ds's bedroom and found chocolate mashed into the carpet. He had a go at me about it saying I should be monitoring the kids bedrooms and then made some joke about how it was "team slug and ds" going out of our way to wreck HIS house. This upset me because I've always worried that this house is more HIS and we're just living here and he's always maintained its OUR house despite the fact that it's his income that allows us to pay the mortgage so when he said that it kind of confirmed that he does see it as HIS house more than OURS. So he said I should be keeping on top of things and not letting the house become a pigsty - forgetting of course that I'd been out in the garden all day in the scorching heat painting woodwork to make our beloved house look nice - yet he says I don't care about it.

Then he gets on about DS's behaviour saying I have to keep on trying to nurture him and not let him get out of control (he has behavioural issues). I argued that I DO keep a close eye on him and do everything I can with him so he said "yeah well don't just take a back seat and relax now thinking everything is an easy ride now because I'm here, you need to do it too" shock so hurtful he's basically accusing me of living off him.

I'm a full time nursing student so work 13 hour shifts as well as study for exams and assignments PLUS I've just landed myself flexible hours on the nursing bank to get us some extra money. He's not happy about that either - he says he is but I can tell he isn't.

See in one breathe he's saying we need me to work so that we can afford luxuries, holidays, savings etc - I agree. Yet when I go to work (either placement or paid work) he has a face on saying the housework doesn't get done, we never see each other and the kids are being left to run riot because I'm not around.

I just can't win. I feel like it's a constant struggle to make him happy and nothing I do is ever good enough. His mum seems to appreciate my existence more than he does.

What smarts is that HE leaves his clothes on the bedroom floor, HE leaves his facial hair in the sink, HE leaves mugs lying around - the dining room which he uses as a computer room is a complete and utter TIP with all his stuff lying around. So it's not even as if he is genuinely OCD about tidyness, it seems like he just looks for an excuse to have a go at me or cause an argument.

SlugBotherer Mon 15-Jul-13 10:06:58

he does do a lot around the house but even that sometimes feels like it's more about getting one over on me than about him needing to do stuff. Like he'll say "can you put the dishwasher one whilst I fix the shower?" and I'll say yes - I'll finish whatever I'm doing, go into the kitchen and he'll be putting on the dishwasher with a face on saying "I'll do it, it's ok". If I say "I was just coming to do it" he'll say "I asked you ages ago but you were more interested in the tv" etc - yeah sure I'll do stuff but maybe not INSTANTLY as soon as you ask me to.

Or he'll say "any chance of a cuppa whilst I sort the car out?" and I'll go and make him one - I'll leave the tea bags mashing and pop to toilet or something to come back to him finished off the teas saying something like "I'll make them shall I?" So even when I am doing stuff, he'll make out that I'm not doing it quick enough.

Yes he does do a lot around the house, I'd never accuse him of being crap regarding housework but I do too. Yet I just get called and have the piss took out of me with sarcy comments. A classic yesterday was "Oh, I've just rescued this loaf of bread which was in the living room for some mad reason." I replied "yes, you left it there when you were eating your soup earlier." he didn't know which way to look but do I call him for it or take the piss? course not.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Mon 15-Jul-13 10:07:39
CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 15-Jul-13 10:12:01

So say that.... 'did you just call me to be sarcastic and take the piss or was there some other reason?' Challenge, challenge and challenge.

'I'll make them shall I?' and 'I'll do it, it's OK'
'No need to be snippy about it... '

'.. you were more interested in the TV'
'It's more interesting than you, yes'

elfycat Mon 15-Jul-13 10:14:15

Is he stressed at work or about money? Or anything else?

My DH goes off on one when he is. It is about control, but his own and internal to him but it comes out in digs about my spending 'his' money or the state of 'his' house. He isn't usually like this so at a certain point in my reaction to it all I'll suddenly have a 'doh' moment and make him spit out the problem. I'm then sympathetic, to a point, and make him realise he's been a prat. It's all fine until the next time he gets stressed and fails to talk to me about it. Usually he understands 'family money' and that my input as SAHM to our preschoolers is a more financially valuable job than the one he does to pay the mortgage.

If he isn't stressed or reacting to something then I agree with the posters above that the control and lack of respect is a problem that you need to address. It doesn't sound like a partnership in which you are equally valued for the efforts you put in.

OneToThree Mon 15-Jul-13 10:19:01

Everything he does is on purpose to make your life more difficult.

My EA ex came into the walk in hairdressers. I pretended I hadn't seen him.

He didn't go to the first free hairdresser he kept saying he'd wait for the woman cutting mine. Just to head fuck me probably.

What I'm trying to say is you can make excuses for them but in reality everything they do is for a reason.

I just ignored him, paid and walked out. Thinking thank fuck I'm not with him anymore.

Are you with my ex?? Sounds exactly like him. Controlling emotionally abusive arse. I didn't realise how truly unhappy I was until I left.

You cannot change him. He does it because he is insecure and pathetic and the only way he can make himself feel good is to make you feel bad. Nothing you can ever do will make him less secure or pathetic.

The only thing you can change is deciding whether you're going to put up with this treatment, or decide that you deserve better and get out.

Or wake up one morning 30 years hence, realising you've spent the best part of your life feeling miserable and unhappy because you thought you could change him.

Lweji Mon 15-Jul-13 10:35:35

Stop trying to make him happy and start making yourself happy, even if it means extracting him.
It might be the shock he needs or he will go, but you'll be happier anyway.

whitesugar Mon 15-Jul-13 10:38:51

Make absolutely no mistake this man is really bad for you and your DS. Myself and other mums know this absolutely because we have been there. His behaviour is textbook abuse and he is not going to change. Tell him point blank you know he is abusing you and that you will leave if he does not change. Do not get into a lengthy discussion with him because manipulative men like him will tie you up in knots. This is their forte. Ideally I would encourage you to leave him straightaway but I know it's hard. You are being abused and bullied. You don't want that to happen to your DS.

Make plans though, go to solicitor about house, get counselling to deal with his behaviour. Don't tell him anything but make plans and get yourself and DS away from him. You will be fine. Keep your head up you are doing great job studying and working. You are stronger than you feel right now. Good luck!

charlottehere Mon 15-Jul-13 10:41:41

He's a dick.

charlottehere Mon 15-Jul-13 10:42:19

How can you live like that? Your not the maid.

What do you get out of this relationship with this person exactly?.

What innate needs of yours are being met here to put up with this abusive treatment?.

You sound like the glorified housekeeper; he has no respect for you whatsoever.

And why do such abusive men act like this - well its also because they can.

Sparklysilversequins Mon 15-Jul-13 10:51:57

He does this because some people (note, not just men) believe that women are servants and not equal to men, only a bit higher up the scale than children or pets. Often it's subconscious I bet he would deny it to the hilt if you asked him straight out.

He believes, because of your servant status that he is perfectly within his rights to pull you up on your work and moan about your standards much as an employer would be within his rights to do. Notice that he puts you and ds on the same team against him? This is because he sees you as a cross between a servant and a child and let's add a bit of "all women are out for what they can get off us hard working men" into the mix. Whatever you do you cannot keep this man happy.

He sounds so like my ex I was actually laughing bitterly as I read your post. I used to say to him when he moaned "if it wasn't this it would be something else". Cue red faced angry denials.

You're his own personal little scratching post as well as 24 hour a day domestic servant.

My ex never changed, even after I left him, despite professing to have had a "huge shock" and vowing to change his ways.

Think about that.

primallass Mon 15-Jul-13 10:52:08

Mine does this and I just tell him where to do. I work from home and he has ridiculous expectations.

CharlotteCollinsismovingon Mon 15-Jul-13 10:59:25

My insides are clenching up just reading how he treats you. It's all very familiar and it's horrible, although for years I'd've said it wasn't that bad, really.

Please do not be hoping for him to get serious about marriage. You want to increase the emotional distance between you, not tie yourself closer. Try not to believe his opinion of you. He is supposed to treat you well, but since he is not, you must do it yourself.

And in the longer term, I hope you find the strength and determination to leave him.

Is he DS's father?

happymundanes Mon 15-Jul-13 11:06:31

He actually cares if there's a card on the floor or a fork out of place? What sort of man cares about that?

I bet he thinks he 'took on' you with your DS and wants you to be grateful. I bet his DM knows he is a wanker and that's why she is so happy he has found someone nice enough to put up with him.

overtheraenbow Mon 15-Jul-13 11:07:52

He's not going to change! He does that because you let him! This is emotional abuse of the highest order. Has he been married before? I'm assuming the DS is yours not yours and his? If so I would quit while you can or you will find yourself 10 years from now with his kids too starting again.
He is using you and when you are working in a good career it will only get worse! You will never be allowed any me time and will feel like you are a hamster wheel constantly. I did and the STBXH who eventually thought he'd treat himself to a new GF ( because he deserved it) is as miserable now as he always was, thankfully he's not my problem any more!!

Oh and Btw read that book !!

newlifeforme Mon 15-Jul-13 11:21:05

How did you purchase the house? Joint tenants?

You asked why?? Simply because he can..I bought a house with my H 3 years ago, having previously lived with him for many years in my place.As soon as we're moved in to our new house his behaviour changed.I'm now in the process of separating.Once I became 'vulnerable' he decided to become a complete arse, working on the basis I would tolerate it because I have to.

This is the hardest part to understand, why does someone who appears outwardly to adore you treat you badly at home.If you're a caring person you can't relate or explain the behaviour but its about control.

ksrwr Mon 15-Jul-13 11:28:45

i would imagine he would probably like someone who is his equal and not his housekeeper. so why dont you start making things that way?
if you put yourself in the position to be treated as nanny+housekeeper, he will treat you like that.
if you demand respect and equality then it will work better for you all.
he will feel needed at home and with the kids, and you will both feel like a partnership rather than boss and employee.
divide up tasks and make time for just you and him, but get him involved in everything.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 15-Jul-13 11:45:42

"he would probably like someone who is his equal and not his housekeeper"

WTF? hmm He's a bully. He'd be a bully however the OP behaved. Yes, the OP should stand up to this man but truth is that , if he actually wanted equality in the relationship, he'd behave accordingly without having to be confronted. He is happy with things the way they are.

TalkativeJim Mon 15-Jul-13 11:55:49

Do you know, I could write PAGES on everything that is wrong with this guy. Pages.

But - apart from the fact that lots of wise folk above have done just that - I am instead going to say:

I don't feel I NEED to point out to you what an absolute massive TWAT this person is. Because you come across as a nice, happy, kind, functional, sane, humourous, NORMAL person.

So you know that you'd never treat the person you're supposed to love like this, would you? Or anyone, really. It's just not good.

So you KNOW that the fact he does makes him... an arse.

And there really is no more to it. You can scratch your head and ask 'but why? What have I done wrong? What's making him unhappy? But there ISN'T a reason.

Some people are miserable, nasty, bullying, selfish little arsewipes.

The trouble is, when you meet these folk in everyday life, you can very easily roll your eyes and say 'God, I can't stand X. He's a total cock.'

But when you have the misfortune to have been taken in by one of these, and you've joined your life with them, and your finances, and you once thought you loved them and vice versa... then you don't tend to say that.

You make every excuse. You try and find a reason which means that they AREN'T really an arse, that it can change.

But it isn't like that.

He's not going to improve, or change, or break down in floods of tears and confess that he's acting like a completely horrible person for some terrible secret reason.

He just is horrible.

The best and only thing to do if you want to be happy, and more importantly, if you want your children to grow up happy and secure, is to get this twat out of your lives. Really.

How is the house owned?
Is your name on it?
Are there savings etc.?
Is there debt in your name?
Find out what you would be entitled to if you split - you may be surprised- some posters on here have great advice to give there.

But just get away from him. There are far nicer people out there, and being single is FAR, FAR better than limping through life indulging a nasty little mini-Hitler.

Sparklysilversequins Mon 15-Jul-13 11:58:07

KSRWR - what a load of victim blaming crap.

This man is proving himself to be a bully and nit picking whatever the OP does. He wants her to work so she gets work, he then moans because the house isn't clean enough, so she cleans the house and then he moans that she needs to work outside the home so they can afford holidays etc.

He leaves his mess for the OP to clean up but bitches if he finds anything he perceives as a mess made by her or her child.

He doesn't WANT to be involved in HER jobs if he did he'd start by cleaning up his frigging chin hairs I would imagine! I would go so far as to say this man will STRENUOUSLY resist any attempt to share the load at home, and his abuse will become even more overt. After all that's what servants his wife is for.

TalkativeJim Mon 15-Jul-13 11:58:12

Oh - and by the way - what his mum said.

Yes, you HAVE made him happier!!! Don't you see what that comment tells you? His mum sees a difference in him. He's got a smile on his face. He's satisfied. He's complacent. He's having a fine old time...

...bullying, bossing, sneering, jeering, stamping down on YOU and YOUR children.

GETTING THE RELATIONSHIP TO THE POINT WHERE HE FEELS HE HAS A PERSON TO BULLY AND CRUSH

HAS

MADE

HIM

VISIBLY

HAPPIER!!!!!

Spero Mon 15-Jul-13 12:02:39

Agree with talkativeJim.

PLEASE don't waste another second asking 'why'. The answer is simply 'because he can'.

The more important question is 'why do you put up with it'??

ImperialBlether Mon 15-Jul-13 12:07:07

It sounds as though your child is not his child.

I'd be off. Why waste time wondering why someone's vile to you? Just keep away from them. Isn't that what you would do if anyone else was horrible to you?

And yes, his mum's right, he's happy he's got someone to bully.

Now start to plan your escape.

CircassianLeyla Mon 15-Jul-13 12:18:48

OP I feel like you may have just plagiarised my life.

We have a better balance now. He still moans, goes in about all he does on his days off etc, but mostly I just ignore it and tell him that the kids had a great time at the park or whatever. I just don't get upset by it anymore. I do try hard to minimise the discussion over my non-domesticity but the bottom line is I just ignore him and let him rant.

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