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.

Mil nightmare or am I overreacting? Dh says I am "ill"

(128 Posts)
Marmaladetoast Sun 15-Sep-13 15:43:08

I have posted before about dh, but he has been a bit better, but now this happened.

We have a house abroad that we have decided to let for holidays - we are just starting to rent out. Its not in the UK, its near dh family. We redecorated it this summer, cleaned it, bought new linen and curtains then flew home.

Dh was sent some pics today of the interior and all the curtains have been changed, all the bed linen has been changed. Mil apparently spent 9 hours redoing the curtains and bed linen in all the bedrooms, letting herself into the cellar and going through all the carefully packed away linen and curtains to re do it.

I was beyond furious. Dh was too, until he spoke to mil and she was very upset we are upset and want it put back how it was when ut took her 9 hours to take down curtains and linen in 3 rooms, deconstruct the beds, go through all our stuff to find something else and put it all up again.

she says when she was hoovering the curtains fell down in the main bedroom, apparently the new curtain hooks ( hanging on the new rails ) put up by professional builders couldn't cope with her hoovering. Instead of getting new hooks she changed the curtains in all the bedrooms and all the linen.

I am really angry about it- she didn't ask, I don't believe her story for a minute, and even so why change all the bedrooms round? And is now feeling very upset and angry I and dh are so ungrateful. She had a good old poke round all our stuff which was locked and bil has the key, so he must have given it to her.

Dh got off the phone, says I am wrong to be so upset and angry at her when she was helping. He says he prefers what she has done. He said I must be ill in the head to get so upset. He says I need mental help as I am upset just for curtains and bed clothes.

I am more angry she just did it, without asking, not caring what we wanted and expects praise for it. There was nothing wrong with any of it, just not to her taste.

Am I wrong here? Dh says I need to see a doctor and I am overreacting. He is making me doubt myself. I wouldn't change anyone's stuff without asking, especially if there was nothing wrong with it.

He isn't speaking to me and has stormed off to work, I am still shaking.

NettleTea Fri 04-Oct-13 16:46:52

same as, Fuzzywuzzy, same as.......

fuzzywuzzy Fri 04-Oct-13 15:04:02

As a divorced Muslim woman with sole custody of my children, I can tell you right now I would not step foot on middle Eastern soil with my children if you paid me, custody automatically goes to the father by law over there. That's the starting point.

JustBecauseICan Fri 04-Oct-13 14:20:57

It is spinechilling. And not in a good way. Her friends were filming it at the back of the carpark in secret IIRC. I know her husband was UAE and the OP's isn't, but I guess the laws are the same no matter what. What's important is that you're a man. sad

captainmummy Fri 04-Oct-13 13:54:58

Justbecause - I daren't even watch that vid. sad

captainmummy Fri 04-Oct-13 13:54:10

OP - no-one is trying to get you to do anything you don't want to! We can see that you are in an abusive situation, and we are trying to help you with that.
Obviously you will have to go slowly slowly; we understand that. We are suggesting plans to help.

But meeting this ex - is a really bad idea. Much better to contact him when you are out of this situation, otherwise it could and probably will make things worse. Are you hoping ex will whisk you all away in his private plane? It won't happen like that - border controls and checks still apply even to private jets

You must realise that unlike Britain, the authorities in UAE are not going to be impartial - they will favour the male over a female any day. Fact.
If your husband gets the slightest wind that you are seeing someone else, (even for coffee) he can have you arrested just on his say-so - if he wants. And it will be a hell of a job to put him straight. It may be more Westernised than Saudi but it still a culture where women are not equal to men.

JustBecauseICan Fri 04-Oct-13 06:20:37

This is the woman fuzzywuzzy is referring to.

www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/mum-wrongly-jailed-for-adultery-in-dubai-1377896

Watch the video on Youtube where her children are taken from her in the carpark.

That might help you decide whether or not to meet your ex.

I wish you well.

NettleTea Thu 03-Oct-13 23:35:18

and from what I remember about living in an Arab state, there are eyes everywhere, and there is nothing people like more than to bring tales of indiscretion to your door.... a friend of a friend of an aquaintance might see you there and just relish the thought of this juicy bit of gossip.

if your ex is more important than your kids, then go ahead. or do you think he is going to offer to sweep you all away in that private jet of his. Because thats just fantasy crazy, and even more dangerous, and even more likely to lose you your kids

Bogeyface Thu 03-Oct-13 22:26:30

Yo are misunderstanding me

The advice you have been given, especially regarding seeing your ex, comes from people who are very worried that you are going to make a bad situation worse.

Forget the legal side of things, if your husband is being abusive now, how on earth do you think he is going to be if he finds out you met your ex (who you said he doesnt like even though he hasnt met him) behind his back? Doesnt matter if it is for lunch, dinner, a coffee or whatever, he will go mad and you know he will.

I am not saying you should do anything to suit me, but that you seem determined to find a reason to justify meeting your ex and not listening to the good advice. Thats fine, your choice, but I still fail to see what you hope to gain by asking for and then ignoring that advice.

Twinklestein Thu 03-Oct-13 21:20:01

now a poster on mn is trying to make me do things to suit them

Honestly, I think all the posters here are just advising you what they believe is in your best interests.

fuzzywuzzy Thu 03-Oct-13 20:39:27

Marmalade, you have lunch in full view of the public with a man who is not your husband, your husband can accuse you of flagrantly having an affair. There will be eye witnesses to the fact that you were having an intimate meal with an unrelated male.

The UAE May not be Saudi Arabia, but I believe it was the UAE where a woman was arrested and lost custody of her children on the words of a husband who claimed he'd found a used condom in his wife's apartment, they used this as 'evidence'.

Make no mistake you will lose everything if you go ahead with this meeting with the ex. The entire system is on your husbands side over there.

Visit the British consulate ask them to help you.

garlicvampire Thu 03-Oct-13 20:08:36

Oh, Marmalade sad

You have to start thinking of your husband as your enemy - because he is; he's an enemy to your independence, your freedom of thought and all that goes with it. You're in a situation where he has immensely more power than you. So you must start thinking like a spy. "Box clever", as my Gran used to say.

Drop the furnishings argument. You have, apparently, had your face saved over that issue hmm and there is nothing more to say. He may expect you to be grateful. Box-clever Marmalade will grudgingly allow that he's let her win, and seem mollified.

If you were in Europe, I'd suggest that you agree there may be issues with your mental health, and find a psychologist who understands abusive relationships. This could provide moral support and help you plan an effective escape. I don't know how hard it will be to find such a psychologist in Dubai - have you got women friends you can trust?

I hope you will find ways to gather your wits, and develop the cool, clear mindset needed to sort out a future for you & DC, away from this controlling man and his toxic family. You say he's unpleasant when drunk. How unpleasant? And do you have reasons to think he's playing away at all? Where is your 'line in the sand'?

There are quite a few MNetters who've made it out of marriages in the Arab nations, some of them overcoming greater restrictions. It takes a smart head and determination. I hope you'll keep posting.

NettleTea Thu 03-Oct-13 19:06:36

should say is NOT a good idea

NettleTea Thu 03-Oct-13 19:06:17

yup - still think that meeting the ex is a good idea.
No, it isnt Saudi, but western women have been jailed and worse in Dubai for less....
And why havent you been in touch with the consulate - they would offer you refuge and safe passage.

fuzzywuzzy Thu 03-Oct-13 18:42:32

Marmalade you are in the UAE your marriage is horrendous, I would be finding ways to get myself and the children safely out of the jurisdiction of the UAS, go to the British consulate.

If you go to meet your ex and your H finds out, he can make lies up that you are committing adultery with him and you'll end up in prison having lost your children.

Your husband has his own agenda and it does not appear to involve being a family with you, he clearly doesnt care about the children either by the way he is happy to have swear filled screaming matches at you in front of the children.

MadBusLady Thu 03-Oct-13 18:29:45

Marmalade, I have only commented once on this thread, to suggest that you don't meet your ex.

This still stands. Not because of legal consequences, but because it is pretty clear from your previous thread about the ex that you actually want to sleepwalk into emotional involvement with him as a means of escapism from a rubbish marriage, rather than taking the steps to end the marriage itself.

Please reconsider. This is not going to end well.

Marmaladetoast Thu 03-Oct-13 17:51:22

BF, I cannot just up and leave to the tune and timing of this thread. I am still thinking what to do and time scales, and that would be foolish to do in a hurry. Advice is welcome, but being told by you I am ignoring it is unfair and hectoring.

I see many people male and female meeting and having coffee together, and dinner - job interviews, friends, I cannot see how meeting a male friend in a cafe in full view of anyone can be considered anything. How would anyone know if he was my dh or not anyway? We are not booking a room. There has been no discussion of this on this thread, of what might happen. It is nt Saudi Arabia.

I already have a dh and a mil who try to force and make me do things, and now a poster on mn is trying to make me do things to suit them. Life is nt so clear cut for me. A little time and planning will make a difference. I think I have to leave the thread, but thank you everyone for your time and posts.

Bogeyface Tue 01-Oct-13 18:13:20

to say that dinner wouldnt be frowned upon etc...

Bogeyface Tue 01-Oct-13 18:12:47

What help do you want exactly?

You have been offered good advice but you wont take any of it. You have been told exactly what kind of crap can happen to women who are accused of adultery (whether true or not) in the country you are in, yet you are still meeting this man! You will lie to your already suspicious and abusive husband in order to meet him, thus making everything 100 times worse if he finds out. To say that dinner would be frowned upon is naive in the extreme, forget the powers that be, how do you think your husband will be about it? Worth the risk? I think not.

You have had a good suggestion about the house but you refused to even consider it.

Tbh, I am wondering why you are asking for advice if you dont want to hear it.

EldritchCleavage Tue 01-Oct-13 17:45:42

Don't meet your ex.
Lock your I-Pad.
Do some proper planning to enable you to leave.

rootypig Tue 01-Oct-13 17:36:56

Marmalade I think you are being somewhat naive - to meet your ex, especially. Your husband's behaviour sounds rather odd still, it's not clear from what you say how he feels about the marriage. But getting things calmer is a good idea. I hope you get some emotional breathing space.

Re ipad - I still think nothing beats being scrupulous about deleting your history. Most browsers have a setting that will automatically scrub the history every time you close the browser. But could you lock it and say if he asks that one of the DC was getting into it?

Marmaladetoast Tue 01-Oct-13 17:17:49

Snazzy, I can't make myself say that. I just can't. And dh would know instantly I was up to something, after the fuss I have made. Dh doesn't know my ex, but dislikes the idea of him.

As for meeting my ex, we are going to meet for coffee instead, as he has work, which is good as all of you who mentioned it have make me nervous, though I can't see how dinner would be frowned upon, we are not booking a room!

Dh has stepped up his nice stuff and wants to go on holiday half term. He has agreed with me we won't be seeing his dm for a very long time, and is backing down on everything. He keeps coming home drunk though, which is awful.

I am going to try to get things calm as I would like to try to get away alone with the dc Christmas. He is going to be away an awful lot, so I am going to say I want to live back in the UK and see him holidays, which a coworker of his does now. That would be wonderful.

I am not sure if he is looking at my iPad which isn't locked. Wouldn't it look strange if I locked it now?

Snazzyenjoyingsummer Mon 30-Sep-13 10:16:13

Can you say you would like to compromise over the house, and get the kids' rooms put back as they want them but the rest can stay? And that you'd like to go over for a visit sooner rather than later so you and your MIL can do it together. That might sound grudging enough to be believable. So get him to book you and the kids flights there for sometimes in the next 1-2 months, and once you are in Europe, get flights (or as was suggested, trains) on to the UK. You could sell your ring to fund the onwards flights - it would be worthwhile.

NettleTea Sun 29-Sep-13 20:50:56

Could he have contacted your ex to get him to contact you?? Seems far fetched, but if you are proving to be a bit of a problem to him, could be just the excuse he needs..... Probably my suspicious mind working overtime, but just quite a coincidence.

Twinklestein Sun 29-Sep-13 20:10:49

Its going to be hard as he said he wants us to be how we were

It's good that he wants this - if you think you can get away with it - I would agree, capitulate about the house, curtains, whatever's necessary to make him think you're onside. You need to focus all your energy and guile on getting the embassy & solid legal advice.

Seeing your old flame now is crazy, you could f*ck up your entire life.
He's not going to want to be involved given the status quo. There is absolutely no point being in touch until you're back in the UK with your kids.

rootypig Sun 29-Sep-13 19:57:09

OP please, please don't see your ex. If you are serious about leaving, you must get legal advice / go to the embassy. Until you do you are fumbling in the dark.

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