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 should I do now?

(33 Posts)
Neitheronethingortheother Mon 30-Sep-13 11:49:00

Myself and Dh have always had a volatile relationship. Both of us can be verbally abusive and it has crossed the line twice to shoving and pushing. We are both quite reactive and both quite sensitive so arguments can flare up out of nowhere and go from 0-60 in a very short time. We are together 15 years and married 8. We have 5 kids between us. We have a good homelife, both work, dont drink or smoke or have any outside influences that are impacting negatively on our marriage.

We had a row over 2 weeks ago. It was a big one. Dhs behavior escalated. I didnt feel safe. He has been staying with a friend for the last 2 weeks.

We cooled down and spoke a couple of days after. I told him my bottom line was that I didnt want us living together until he could promise me that he would walk away from an argument. We made up and have been spending time together, with kids, have had sex etc.. but he has not stayed the night in our home.

We have had 5 or 6 sessions of couples counselling but I do not see how things have changed in the relationship since. I feel he is not accepting responsibility for his temper and anger and that he is taking it out on me and not in proportion to what I deserve.

I thought we had agreed to him staying until he could manage his anger but last night he said he couldnt live that way. That he either moved back in or we split up.

THis is not what I want but I don't want to go back to the way things were and so what do I do?

cjel Wed 02-Oct-13 19:36:54

Yes I mean that although I understand it is an adult relationship , the way you have to 'persevere' for hours to say what you what doesn't sound like my idea of a grown up relationship, he sounds as if his emotional development is stunted and for some reason you don't feel able to stand up to him in an adult way? Almost quite adolescent when people haven't developed enough to interact properly.

Now I've written all that it sounds very critical - I don't mean it to but I don't know how to explain it differently, sorry.Hope I haven't caused you upset?x

foolonthehill Wed 02-Oct-13 20:37:41

The point is that whatever you do you can't make him change. If he won't or can't then you are either going to have to move on without him or be doomed to repeating the pattern you describe.

Not a great choice I grant you either way

Neitheronethingortheother Wed 02-Oct-13 22:54:07

My friend who he is staying with had agreed to let him stay there at a reasonable rate until Feb. I guess that will give us enough time to decide if its worth saving or splitting.

Yes he is emotionally stunted and very closed. I can see why from his upbringing. While his home was emotionally bleak mine had a bit more colour but was unstable as my mother suffered with manic depression and I took the brunt and internalised alot of her shit. My dad was emotionally unavailable. So its not hard to see why there might be difficulties there.

foolonthehill Thu 03-Oct-13 10:14:05

The past gives him reasons for the way he is but no excuses to stay that way. We all carry baggage, it doesn't have to define us.

Neitheronethingortheother Fri 04-Oct-13 08:19:56

I received a text from him yesterday saying he was going to take our friend up on his revised affordable offer of a room until Feb and that his reason for doing so was to make our marriage better and stronger and that he loved me. I know its just a text but it is him taking some responsibility for our marriage and recognising that things will take time. I know he would rather be at home and there is nothing stopping him from moving back other than me saying I would prefer if he didn't. I hope we can use this time to draw up clear boundaries and put into practice acceptable ways of interacting with each other especially in relation to disagreements but with a bit of space to reflect on our own reactions and weaknesses.

foolonthehill Fri 04-Oct-13 08:35:54

I hope so too. Good luck.

cjel Fri 04-Oct-13 08:37:39

that sounds good, I'm pleased that you have that made clear between you, it takes the pressure off for a bitx

Fragglewump Fri 04-Oct-13 08:49:48

He needs to sort out his issues. His bleak childhood has affected him deeply and I know someone almost exactly the same. He was super defensive and aggressive out of very deep hurt that he had suffered as a child. He could sulk for days and found it hard to apologise. He found it hard to connect with and trust a counsellor. He only started change when his marriage was on the line. He interviewed several counsellor and had many sessions with the preferred one. He had emdf and is a very different person now. He now longer shifts the blame onto his wife during a disagreement and can take responsibility for his actions. It has been hard for him but it had to be done. You need to decide what you want. And he has to decide if the way he is makes him happy. Good luck with your choices.

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