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Feeling downtrodden and detached from my partner

(68 Posts)
DfanjoUnchained Wed 24-Jul-13 09:06:11

Ive been with my dp for 4 years. My dp doesn't have much joy. He doesn't notice a beautiful flower, sunset, view and smile. When he walks he's got tunnel vision and is in his own world, thinking about what he needs to do.

He is very selfish. Never offers to make dinner. When I walk in the door with huge car seat and ds, 2 big bags he won't get up and help because he's working (sitting at a desk in living room). He is very self absorbed and admits this but nothing changes.

If we have an argument, he will always name call. He called me mug and prick over minor things which really upset me.

When I arrange weekend days out, he's grumpy, never smiles. We went to a festival last weekend with live music and amazing food and children playing. I was making conversation but he'll either 'mm' back or silence.
He'll then moan he wants to go, it's too hot etc etc. my good mood is then gone and I feel depressed.

He's not like this with anyone else, he's so animated with his friends and strangers or about football. When his friends make plans, he'll run there. When I do he'll stall as much as possible or make us late as he obviously doesn't want to go. So I feel like he really doesn't like me much. I have a 7 month old and really don't want him to call me names or copy his dad.

He was abused as a child by his mother so I feel like I should look after him. I feel sorry for the child he was and want to wrap him up. But he really grinds me down, I feel down trodden a lot.

He also has a quick temper. While in labour I asked him to slow down over bumps (obv in a shouty-ish way as I was having awful contractions) he slammed the breaks on and yelled at me and made me cry.

He's good with ds and will play with him, change him, bathe etc but I have to tell him to do everything which is v annoying.

He proposed to me recently and I don't know if I ever want to marry this man, my gut says no, my heart, yes. I do love him deeply but I don't feel like I'm in love with him anymore. I feel very distant, especially after the recent 'mug' thing and festival.

We are going to counselling and having CBT. She sets commitments to do each week and so far they haven't been done.

I don't really know why I posted but wanted to get it out.

DfanjoUnchained Wed 24-Jul-13 09:09:53

Also, as a 'test' I've not initiated any affection this week to see if he will kiss me etc as I'm always the one to stroke, kiss him, hug.

I've had a hand on my leg in a week sad

CoffeeandScones Wed 24-Jul-13 09:38:31

Sorry to hear this Dfanjo (nice name). I'm sure someone wiser than me will be here soon, but I'd say don't marry him unless your heart AND your head say yes. Feels like there's a lot that would need to change for that to happen. Is it realistic to believe it actually will change?

CrazyOldCatLady Wed 24-Jul-13 09:46:27

Don't marry him. He's not going to change, and you'll never be properly happy. Get out of there and give yourself a chance at real happiness with someone else.

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 24-Jul-13 09:50:19

No, don't marry this man. You're not his mother or his carer and you are not responsible for his miserable personality. You're meant to be his partner.... his equal and the person he values & respects most in the world. From the description you provide he seems to be already taking it for granted that, no matter how badly he treats you or how much he ignores you, you will always be there, taking it on the chin. He's bad-tempered, angry, operates double standards, is discouraging you from having friends, verbally abusive, selfish, petty and critical .... I could go on.

He is not interested in counselling or CBT because, as far as he is concerned, you're the one with the problem and he doesn't need to improve. I have no idea how you 'love very deeply' someone as emotionally abusive, disrespectful and soul-destroying as you describe.... he doesn't even seem to like you.

I think the longer you stay in this relationship, the worse it'll get and the lower your self-esteem will drop. If he's this contemptuous of you now, he'll be 10 x worse if you had a ring on your finger. I honestly think you need to get out of this damaging set-up for your own good.

Finola1step Wed 24-Jul-13 09:55:24

Hi Dfanjo. It sounds like you are in a terribly sad situation. The one thing that jumped out at me is the fact that he was abused by his mother and you feel like you should look after him - but you can't make it all better. It is really good that both of you are seeing a counsellor, but it does sound like you are doing all the work.

It is not your fault what happened with his mother. You can not fix it, take all the pain away etc. By trying, maybe he is seeing you in the mothering role and treats you with such contempt because that's what he feels towards his own mother.

What do you get out of this relationship? Would a trial separation while you both see a counsellor separately help you to decide what you really both want from this relationship?

DfanjoUnchained Wed 24-Jul-13 10:48:23

I don't think I love him deeply in a romantic way cog more in a brotherly, caring way iykwim.

My self esteem is very low anyway as I was verbally and emotionally abused by my stepfather all my childhood.

It really is a case of when we get along, it's great but otherwise it's not. And god help me if I'm having pmt or feeling run down/stressed, he seems to always 'kick me when I'm down' he can't stand me like that and gets assertive with me.

I really don't know what the future holds. We're renting atm. Meant to be buying soon but house will be in my name - I'm very sure I want that incase I want him out - that's not right is it?

DfanjoUnchained Wed 24-Jul-13 10:50:49

Finola I really think he needs individual counselling and he was meant to bit when he had an assessment they suggested couples so I went along with it.

I definitely think he has very low tolerance for women (read: me) asking him to do things or standing up to him because of his mother.

We haven't had a shouty fight in ages, since starting counselling which is good but I think it's because I'm just feeling distant

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 24-Jul-13 10:58:16

Just because your stepfather treated you badly, it doesn't mean you don't deserve to be treated with respect by everyone else. You don't even love him in a brotherly caring way, I'm afraid. Your relationship sounds more like a prisoner trying to keep a bad-tempered jailer sweet.

No matter how good the great times are (and I'm guessing they are getting fewer and further apart) the idea that he kicks you when you're down - even knowing you don't mean that literally - makes him a disgusting creature that you should make every effort to get out of your life. BTW that kind of behaviour is not 'assertive', it's 'bullying' or 'abusive' and it's unacceptable.

Please don't buy a house with this man, even if it's in your name. Buy yourself and your DCs a house where you can live together safely, away from the abuse and restore your self-esteem

cestlavielife Wed 24-Jul-13 11:03:43

dont marry him

see an individual counsellor yourself.

he can be a good father to child but separately from you.

"I feel like I should look after him. I feel sorry for the child he was and want to wrap him up" this is the issue really - because he isnt your child. he is suppsosed to be adult partner. you can delve in therapy into why you want to care for this man etc....

but ultimately, best thing to do is move on separate and stop being his mother. who knows he might grow up and be better, as he can be with other people...

OctopusPete8 Wed 24-Jul-13 11:06:57

God no, he sounds like a vampire.

The way he treat you was awful in labour, I would have given him his marching orders then.

DfanjoUnchained Wed 24-Jul-13 11:16:13

He just always seems to be fucking frowning.

But then why isn't he like that around other people, mostly his friends?

My father is going to buy a house and we will live there as we cannot save for a mortgage so if we were to split I doubt he would be entitled to anything?

I'm only 28 and feel like I'm wasting my younger years always trying to make him happy. I feel so tired and run down as I do everything with ds, all naps and night feeds etc

We have couselling this week and I think I'm definitely bringing this all up. Up until now I've kind of sat back. I'm worried once I open up I won't be able to stop

DfanjoUnchained Wed 24-Jul-13 11:21:36

Also, I really want to have more children soon but I know I will need support with 2 dcs and don't see it coming from him. My family said he really needs to be more hands on but you can't make someone, can you.

Sometimes ill be really struggling and hell be watching me but won't come over and take ds (if he's having a little tantrum) confused he will just basically sit back and let me deal with everything. But if its something that interests him then he's all involved.

yorkshirewoman Wed 24-Jul-13 11:30:14

Don't marry him - it sounds to me as though things will get worse - he sounds like the typical 'street angel - house devil' - he is landing all the shit on you.
It's hard to break up and I should know I have been with a man like this for 20 years, everyone outside the house thinks he's wonderful - what I want to know is why men can be a 'knight in shining armour' to his friends and his family and behave like a shit inside the home to people they are supposed to be close to and love.
Anyway, I am off on my own on holiday for the first time ever on Friday and to be honest at the age of 65 feeing v much in two minds about it.
But again - please don't marry him because he will not change and you are wasting your emotional energy on him

fuzzywuzzy Wed 24-Jul-13 11:30:16

He's not going to change.

He behaves this way with you but not his friends, to me that says he chooses to take out his ishoos on you because he knows you'll take it and not on his friends.

Don't marry him, never marry someone when you have alarm bells ringing in your head shouting no!

Move into your dads house alone, make it a fresh start for you and your son. What difference will it make not having him around, apart from getting rid of the black cloud and verbal abuse?

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 24-Jul-13 11:30:55

"But then why isn't he like that around other people, mostly his friends?"

Because (and advance apologies for putting it this way) he knows if he pulled any of that abusive crap with other people they'd tell him to straighten his face or fuck off... and not 'oh darling diddums, did you have a rough childhood, let me lie down here so you can walk all over me...'

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 24-Jul-13 11:33:23

" if we were to split I doubt he would be entitled to anything?"

Of course you would. Not housing benefit if you've got a house but you'd potentially qualify for Tax Credits, income support, Child Benefit, Council Tax benefit and he'd have to pay maintenance for the children. There's a really good benefits checker at www.turn2us.org.uk. Run your details through it and I bet you'd be surprised at how much help you'd get.

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 24-Jul-13 11:34:22

Sorry misread that ... 'he' would also be entitled to various help if he qualifies.

DfanjoUnchained Wed 24-Jul-13 11:39:44

But I do stand up to him cog I'm very assertive and don't mince my words. Hence why I think we clash because I'm not sort of woman who takes shit. It's just tiring now so I've withdrawn so there's no confrontation. He would never back down if we argued, I would have to walk away.

I wish I could move into my dads house with my ds but I needed dp's salary to pay mortgage. I guess I could claim housing benefit if I was a single parent as we would be basically renting it?

He went away for a week recently and I thought I wouldn't be able to cope with ds alone. But we had a great time and I felt much more relaxed and less anxious and I didnt miss him that much sad

yorkshire totally agree with the 'house devil' reminds me of Maya Angelou's quote :

“If you have only one smile in you, give it to the people you love. Don't be surly at home, then go out in the street and start grinning 'Good morning' at total strangers.”

People think he's so lovely, he's well spoken, very polite and has excellency manners. My df said he couldn't have hoped for a better SIL when he proposed sad

YoniBottsBumgina Wed 24-Jul-13 11:46:04

He will drag you down with him if you're not careful!

Honestly, if I have learnt one thing about having children it is that timing, spacing, age, gender, money, place to live etc - nothing in this world is more important than doing it with the right person. (Whether that means a heterosexual partner/spouse, homosexual partner, doing it alone from a sperm bank/adopting, choosing to go into it with a co-parent who you're not in a relationship with, it doesn't matter, but do it with the right person.)

You've already realised that he isn't the right person for you to have more children with - don't do it.

YoniBottsBumgina Wed 24-Jul-13 11:47:53

Assertiveness doesn't make you immune to emotional abuse.

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 24-Jul-13 11:50:25

"I guess I could claim housing benefit if I was a single parent as we would be basically renting it?"

If your father is the registered owner and pays a Buy To Let mortgage on the house then you would be his tenant, yes. But check out the Housing Benefit rules in your area before going down that path because they vary from authority to authority.

I'm sure you are assertive and I was exaggerating earlier to make a point. However, feeling tired, withdrawn and that all you can do is walk away suggest that you have been ground down by a sustained campaign of abuse ... which you are tolerating on the grounds of good intentions relating to his upbringing.

If you like quotes, try this one. "The road to hell is paved with good intentions"

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 24-Jul-13 11:51:28

"I'm only 28 and feel like I'm wasting my younger years always trying to make him happy."

Average life expectancy for a British woman these days is over 80. Can you imagine another 50+ years of this?

yorkshirewoman Wed 24-Jul-13 11:55:38

Agree with Yoni -assertiveness does not make you immune to emotional abuse - I am a strong woman but endless abuse in the end gets to you

BadSkiingMum Wed 24-Jul-13 11:56:06

He yelled at you in labour?

Imagine if he had an abdominal condition, was in severe pain and you were taking him to hospital. How would you treat him?

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