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Odd situation and need some advice

(116 Posts)
MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 18:27:07

Married 10 years, we have a child aged 7. I have older children who spend the week between our house and their dad's. it's a long standing arrangement that works great.
Our relationship has always been strong - the very best I could hope for. We have fun, great sex, a lot of banter and laughter and he is wonderful with all the DCs.
He is stressed lately because of changes in his work force - there is a possibility he may lose his job (through no fault of his). We both work fulltime. This has been dragging on since summer with no conclusion.
Understandably he's been snappy and worried at times but just before Xmas he turned on me - over a wisecrack comment I made, can't remember what! - and he screamed at me that I was a fucking cunt.
Since then, he has been perfectly civil to me but has neither touched me, kissed me or properly spoken to me. He has really withdrawn.
Today he made an odd comment that he has to teach the DCs' manners because they wouldn't get any with me. I work with children for a living and am known for my high expectations!
I am now getting to the end of my tether. He is honestly a lovely man but I can't do this for much longer.
Advice please.

AloeSailor Fri 11-Jan-13 18:28:15

He's being abusive.

badinage Fri 11-Jan-13 18:31:06


MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 18:32:58

Def not an affair.
Yes he is being abusive. He's really not like this usually. I think it's stress about his job. I understand it but don't want to have it aimed at me!

AloeSailor Fri 11-Jan-13 18:36:04

You don't need to put up with this.

Binfullofresolutionsfor10thjan Fri 11-Jan-13 18:38:35

It sounds like stress. Is he lashing out at you because you're all he's got?

I imagine he's acutely embarrassed about his behavior and possibly unable to find a way to open up and apologies.

The DC's won't learn much in the way of manners from someone who thinks it's ok to call a loved on a " fucking c*nt" though, eh? hmm

MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 18:39:48

I know I don't. But I don't even know how to broach it with him.
A few nights ago I asked if he was ok - he said he was fine, he was happy, 'there's nothing wrong with me'. When I said 'what about us? Are we ok?' he just laughed. Then didn't engage further.
How can I talk to him if he won't talk?

MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 18:41:41

Totally agree with you, Bin.
Thank The Lord the DCs weren't in the house.

But what do I do?

Binfullofresolutionsfor10thjan Fri 11-Jan-13 18:50:51

I don't think you can let him close down on the conversation.

Did he apologise for the comment?

Could that be a way of opening the communication?

I'm still hurt by what you said at Christmas, I'm sorry if my comment upset you but I didn't deserve to be called bleep, and I think you owe me an apology for that. Something is obviously troubling you because since xxxx you haven't kissed me or touched me. I am happy to listen if you want to offload, I'm your partner and here for you if you need me. However I can't continue in this if you are going to be distant and cold....?

Hard to argue with facts and dates.

Hope you can sort it out.

MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 18:52:41

God, so do I.
Thank you Bin, that's a good way in.
This is killing me.

badinage Fri 11-Jan-13 19:31:06

I'm always staggered when someone says 'definitely not' to an affair suggestion.

Unless you spend 100% of the time with someone (and you clearly don't) how can you be that definite?

Especially when it's one of the main causes of suddenly strange behaviour at home.

MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 19:35:01

Maybe I'm being naive, Badinage. But I really would be surprised.

ImperialBlether Fri 11-Jan-13 19:48:09

He doesn't sound like a nice person at all. Now if he was before all this and suddenly isn't (particularly with the lack of affection) then I would be very suspicious of an affair.

I felt I was going mad when my ex was having an affair because he was home every night at the normal time and didn't spend any extra time out of the house. It was someone from work who couldn't go out in the evenings either.

Think about it. It's common for people to become nasty when they start an affair - they know they're in the wrong and have to justify their actions to themselves.

Having said that, whether he is or isn't, I couldn't live with someone who treated me like that. And laughing when you ask whether you are both getting on together! That is just plain nasty.

balia Fri 11-Jan-13 20:07:34

Agree with Bin, keep it really factual, calm, specific. Don't be deflected by attempts at humour or insinuations that you are mad/nagging/making a fuss about nothing.

Maybe he shocked and scared himself and doesn't know how to deal with it?

And - sorry to be blunt - are you still sleeping together?

Ragwort Fri 11-Jan-13 20:11:15

Mushroom - 'But I really would be surprised', so would many of us who have found out our DHs were having affairs sad

FaresPlease Fri 11-Jan-13 21:13:16

Could he be suffering from depression? While the condition is horrible for the sufferer, it can also be horrible for all those close to him or her. Behaviour can be awful, grumpy, snappy, hurtful, unreasonable. Could u suggest a trip to the doctor? Sometimes people get low. They need support from those who love them, not kicked onto the street, as some r quick to suggest.

Sorry u r having a hard time OP. So tricky to deal with a change in someones behaviour when u don't even know what's wrong. Obviously don't put up with it ad infinitum, but you clearly love him ( though its hard to feel it at times like this) so give him the benefit of the doubt in
the mean time. And obviously if things don't look like improving any time soon, tell him it's become intolerable for u. Hope u get to the bottom if it.

harrap Fri 11-Jan-13 21:39:09

My first thought was depression too.

badinage Fri 11-Jan-13 21:42:28

This doesn't sound at all like depression to me.

It sounds like stress.

Entirely different things.

Bubblegum78 Fri 11-Jan-13 21:47:05

OP, he called you a cunt... that's hardcore! <shocked face>

I wouldn't pussy foot around, sit him down when the kids are not around and tell him you understand that he is upset and frustrated but you have had enough of his nastiness and what the bloody hell does he think he is playing at calling you names and making nasty remarks about you in front of the kids??

He may well be depressed by IMO there are lines that you do NOT cross and he long jumped over it!

No offense love, but stop worrying about his feelings, take the bull by the horns and deal with that man!

Girl power! Grrrrrrrrr! <game face>

My friends hubby had an affair, it was the last thing she expected, totally blindsided her, it happens when you least expect it.

Skyebluesapphire Fri 11-Jan-13 21:47:50

I do really hope it's not OW and don't want to jump on the bandwagon, but I would never ever have thought that my XH would have had an emotional affair but he did.

Everybody that knew him was complete gob smacked as he was the responsible quiet shy doting family man....

Aside from that, obviously he shouldn't be speaking to you like that and he does need to talk to you about it.

Bubblegum78 Fri 11-Jan-13 21:49:02

I just ran this past hubby and he said one word...


MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 23:30:26

I'm more worried than I was before :-(

badinage Fri 11-Jan-13 23:41:34

Any other signs?

The one that always seems to get mentioned is changed phone behaviour e.g. passwords, on silent and taken everywhere.

MushroomSoup Fri 11-Jan-13 23:45:04

Absolutely nothing.

mumvswild Fri 11-Jan-13 23:52:35

You know the drill Mushroom, check the phone and email. If there's nothing to hide it shouldn't be a problem. you deserve to know the truth. Good luck. I think it's stress too.l

badinage Fri 11-Jan-13 23:56:07

Whether he's having an affair or not, you're going to have to sit down and talk to him about his changed behaviour and the rift it is causing in your marriage, aren't you? There's a cause for this and you need to find it - and the behaviour needs to stop.

Skyebluesapphire Fri 11-Jan-13 23:59:42

I really hope it isn't but just keep an open mind that's all.

You do need to talk to him, find out what the problem is and see if you can sort things out one way or another.

olympicvibes Sat 12-Jan-13 00:07:32

Since he switched off he has been bottling everything up. Tell him you are thrre to talk and want to listen but can't be shut out.
Doubt affair if he is angry. Maybe if he was secretive with phone, lateness/change of routine but in my opinion anger is classic pent up steam cooker reaction to his own feelings and fears.
You can help him if he lets you-and you want to. Can you take any time out together or try to do something fun with dc together?

My dp has suffered from stress and depression and he is now finally getting help but it has been very stressful and frustrating when he switches off to 'cope'.

ifso Sat 12-Jan-13 00:12:19

I'm uncomfortable with how you seemed to let him call you that

Didnt you tackle him when he said it?

Dont ever let a man away with saying such a thing in your home, just dont.

Tackle him about it.

Are you actually afraid of him OP? Has he done something else? if it was out of the blue, I would NOT have let him away with it, there and then, is what I'm trying to say.

Is this normal language for him? it's no bed of roses here but DH has never used those words to me in 16yrs

he needs to start talking - to you - like an adult, not a teenager, regardless of life stresses etc

MushroomSoup Sat 12-Jan-13 00:20:18

Of course I didn't put up with it!! He knows exactly how I felt.

But yes, this is causing a huge rift. One part of me feels dreadfully sorry for the lovely man I know who is very stressed, but the other part of me cannot get over the fact that he called me that, and bad mouths my parenting. I'm actually not sure that I even want to speak to him
Why should I be the one to have to fucking put it right? :-(

MushroomSoup Sat 12-Jan-13 00:20:52

Definitely not normal language, no. And said with such venom.

ifso Sat 12-Jan-13 00:26:33

sorry OP, I came across harsh before. It is confusing, why should you have to fix things, when he has created this rift? Maybe go out tomorrow by yourself for a few hours if you can? Get space from each other?

olympicvibes Sat 12-Jan-13 00:46:05

You can't be expected to fix anything-and I felt same but reality is because he so obviously isn't being himself you probably already are the punching bag and it is so unfair.
It's up to you if you try to talk to him or not but how much longer can you take the silent treatment? Hope he wakes up but sounds like he needs a shock of reality. Not easy at all for you to handle but you need to find out what problem is first. Can you talk to him this wekend?

jynier Sat 12-Jan-13 00:50:59

Huge red flag!!! I'd guess that he's having an affair - sorry!

ZooAnimals Sat 12-Jan-13 01:02:27

You say he's stressed and he is behaving like someone suffering extreme stress.

Could be an affair, but... when you hear hoofbeats, think horses not zebras and all that.

I would avoid snooping through his emails/phone records until after you've tried talking to him. If he isn't having an affair the fact that you don't trust him isn't going to help the relationsip.

springyhope Sat 12-Jan-13 01:18:48

I don't care what stress he's under, talking to you like that (and undermining your parenting) is abuse and is not acceptable under any circumstances. Under any circumstances.

Perhaps you could make it clear and plain that if he doesn't get his act together sharpish he'll be losing his marriage, his children and his home, as well as his job, if he so much as breathes anything like that again.

tigerdriverII Sat 12-Jan-13 01:31:31

Don't jump to conclusions over affair. It's perfectly reasonable for OP to say she thinks this unlikely. I would say so with my DH - there are loads of reasons why I would not jump to conclusions even if there were things that weren't quite the same as usual. Too many conclusions here IMO

badinage Sat 12-Jan-13 01:32:51

Affairs really aren't as rare as zebras and I think we probably all know men and women who weren't the 'type'. Sadly I've known a few people who felt on the scrapheap a bit at work - facing redundancy etc. - who got involved in a dalliance as an escape from the pressure and stress. A lot of folk get their egoes boosted by work, and if that's going down the pan then they look for another stroke. It's not that they always want to leave their marriages either, but the stress and guilt catches up with them and so they act up at home. They feel too guilty to act all normal and affectionate, so they manufacture arguments so that a wall is put up, which helps with the guilt.

If there is nothing going on like this, it seems odd that he hasn't apologised or tried to make things right again. In fact he seems to be raising the stakes and putting more barriers in the way. I don't think it's about whose role it is to sort it out. It's more a matter of being open about how unhappy it's making you and refusing to be spoken to this way - and insisting on change and getting to the bottom of what's causing it.

HollyBerryBush Sat 12-Jan-13 07:39:23

What did you say to him that has caused him to shut his emotions down? thats the trigger.

FFS - not everybloke is over the side, I do wish the first suggestion isn't 'oh he's having an affair, spy on him'

The OP has HURT him, clearly quite badly. Either she genuinely can't rmember or she just not telling us because it's so bad>

What ever she's done, he's withdrawn from her, so it must have been pretty awful if he's still upset about it a month later

kittybiscuits Sat 12-Jan-13 08:15:12

Crikey hollyberrybush, does that mean you think mushroomsoup really is a cunt then? Or did you accidentally start posting on the wrong website?

It's really not on mushroom. If he doesn't give a full apology within a short timeframe, then he's putting you in a very difficult position. It really sounds likequite a major shift in his behaviour and attitude.

Had to say what's behind it.

When XH started his affair he became very angry with me. It was as if having another partner made him realise that I was 'the problem' and that he was justified in being angry about literally anything I did. But in parallel he stayed up late every night on the laptop presumably messaging there was other behaviour.

MushroomSoup Sat 12-Jan-13 09:15:36

I really, really don't know what I said. We're both very sarcastic and jokey and I think I must have said something that hit a raw nerve but I have no idea what it was, or even what it was about. I was stirring gravy and being flippant I suppose. There was definitely nothing said to hurt him badly.

I do believe he is stressed - he's sleeping badly too.

It doesn't sound to me like the root cause is what you said.

MadAboutHotChoc Sat 12-Jan-13 09:21:09

My DH wasn't the type either and he had an affair - friends and family were shocked to the core.

He became very stressed and horribly grumpy. This behaviour is very common in cheaters - the stress of leading a double life can get to them but also in order to justify their decision to cheat, they become critical and pick fights to put the betrayed party in a poor light.

MadAboutHotChoc Sat 12-Jan-13 09:24:25

I would do the following:

* Confront him about his name calling (calling you cunt is NOT on - there is no way my DH would call me this and get away with it) and his vile behaviour. See if he offers a reason for this.

* Snoop - you are entitled to do this in the light of his behaviour. Check his mobile, laptop, emails, internet history, deleted folders, phone bills, pockets etc.

Badvoc Sat 12-Jan-13 09:27:45

Check out the affair script op.
You might be unpleasantly surprised sad

Follyfoot Sat 12-Jan-13 09:32:28

My first thought was depression too rather than affair. My DH suffers with this, and in the past, the first signs were becoming withdrawn and also pretty unpleasant - saying things to me that he would never ever say normally (and he wouldnt apologise at the time either). He now takes medication which helps hugely, but we have also become better as a couple at dealing with this.

Would one way to start things off be to take the emphasis away from the words he called you and actually talk to him in broader terms about how he is feeling and what is going on in his head? I've a feeling thats where the issue is and the words were maybe a symptom. Perhaps then he can start taking action to address whatever is going on (GP maybe?). It could be that until he gets some help, he might not be able to change back to being the person you love.

glitch Sat 12-Jan-13 09:43:16

He sounds like my ex. He suffered from depression and enormous amounts of stress at work and gradually started chipping away at me, telling me how useless I was at things, how I didn't listen to him in the right way etc. It was almost a transfer of his stress onto me, that he needed to make feel bad because he was.
It could be a similar thing, in which case try to get him talking about what is worrying him.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 07:48:32

Well it's all gone tits up here.
It had carried on much the same but slowly improving until tonight. We were all (me, DH and 4 DCs) watching a film. One of my DD's was laying on the floor and at one point said 'whatever' to him and he tapped her with his foot on the side of her head. Now this was definitely no kick and didn't hurt her, but I felt it was absolutely a final straw. Because she cried, I cuddled her so he stormed out. After a few mins I went after him and told him in no uncertain terms he was never to use his feet on my children EVER.
To cut a long story short he says the problem is that my DCs are bad mannered and I allow them to be cheeky to him and undermine him.
Apparently even our own daughter who we have brought up together is cheeky and that's my fault to.

I told him I was happy with my kids and if he was so unhappy he needs to go. He said he'd been thinking about it so I pushed him and said it was time to act.

So he's packed a case. Told our DD that he is going away for a few days. Slept on the settee last night.

Please hold my hand.

maras2 Sun 20-Jan-13 07:57:30

Here's my hand,Mushroom.Good riddance to the abusive,mardy arsed twat.Good luck to you and your kids.

MissPants Sun 20-Jan-13 07:58:31

Didn't want to read and run, I'm so sorry you're going through this. If it helps I would have done the same.

{{holds hand}}

Allergictoironing Sun 20-Jan-13 08:00:05

Morning Mushroom. I can't really help any here, except to hold your hand this morning.

Hold on there for the sake of the DCs, and call a family member you can talk to as soon as you're sure they are up.

StuffezLaBouche Sun 20-Jan-13 08:00:27

Another hand here too. On phone so sorry for typos. I remember this thread, it had to blow up eventually but im sorry to hear hr hss gone. Where will he be staying?
And why is instilling manners only your responsibility?

kittybiscuits Sun 20-Jan-13 08:04:00

Hi soup sorry to hear things are hard. Maybe it's positive that things have come to a bit of a head. You have been picking up his hostility and resentment. Now he's voiced it. You handled it really well. Let him go for a few days - it will give you a bit of space and give him a reality check. When the dust has settled a bit, maybe you can mull over whether there is any real basis for what he has said about your DCs. Or whether he is just fault-picking and seeking justification for his own shitty behaviour. What's the plan today? Let him go with minimal fuss and try to do something that will be a distraction today. If he's worth it, he'll be back.

MyPreciousRing Sun 20-Jan-13 08:06:10

Hand being held, very tight. Have no advice to offer other than maybe let him have a couple of days to cool off then ask to sit down and talk, ask him to get everything into the open as you can't help him if you don't know what's wrong. <Hug>

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 08:06:21

He says that where he stays is none of my fucking business.

He actually told me that he has STAYED with us because 'someone had to teach them some manners' which I find incredibly hard to hear.
They are actually good kids (3 young teens). They help around the house, they are good company, they are polite with excellent school records. Of course they are not angels - there is occasionally eye rolling, a slammed door, a 'whatever' - but this is manageable and to be expected. He hates their table manners because sometimes he can hear them eat or they hold a cake with too many fingers. This is absolutely NOT my lovely husband but I can't let this go on for the sake of the DCs - who actually all have a very good relationship with him. He's been here since they were toddlers

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 08:08:00

Yes of course I'm going to let him go with no fuss. I'm just worrying about child care in the morning! I leave really early and he usually takes DD to school!

Sugary Sun 20-Jan-13 08:12:47

I'm sorry this is happening. I would ring work and tell them you'll be late. Are you a teacher? I know how difficult it is to be flexible if that's the case, though.


justaboutchilledout Sun 20-Jan-13 08:13:09

He called you a cunt, and he says where he stays is none of your fucking business, and he's worried about your CHILDREN's manners?

This is nothing to do with the children.

FergusSingsTheBlues Sun 20-Jan-13 08:14:53

You need to have a straight discussion with him. This sudden hatred of you and your kids seems torally irrational and id be concerned about his mental health. People dont just 'switch' for no reason, do they?

StuffezLaBouche Sun 20-Jan-13 08:15:53

Your kids sound great! His attitude is bewildering, really. I hate to say it, but i think you need to brsve yourself for the possibility of an affair. I think thid manners bollocks has been a long standing excuse, (a crap one but all he can come up with) so hes got a "valid" reason for leaving. Have you got someone eith you?

pmgkt Sun 20-Jan-13 08:21:12

I think you need to see counsellor together, soon before more things are said. I don't think the kids are the problem, unless maybe he is struggling with them growing up and losing control. Seeing someone may at least you may get some answers even if they aren't what you want to hear. Wishing you all the best.

Cherylkerl Sun 20-Jan-13 08:22:24

Totally agree with justaboutchilledout

My ex was abusive - treat me with utter contempt, constantly demanding money etc, not thanking me for a brew or anything. But if I said 'what?' Rather than 'pardon', I was common/rude and in the end, I was allowed to cook dinner or buy takeaway but took to eating in a separate room because of the glares or comments regarding my lack of table manners, he constantly berated all my manners. Urgh sorry for the thread hijack, just realised how well shot I am. Anyway, my point being the ridiculous double standards.

I wonder if his shitty behaviour has gone off for longer than you think.

Hope you can get some practical support re childcare and emotional support. Your children are lucky to have you.

He sounds like he is going through something. Don't let him change your view of your lovely family. All is not lost, if he decides he can parent older children he can come back if you want him to and if he is willing to put in some effort. If he can't then you're all better off with him out.
I'm so sorry.

Pantone363 Sun 20-Jan-13 08:30:30

Sorry, but affair.

The willingness to leave at the first hint? Men only do that if they have somewhere to leave to.

ENormaSnob Sun 20-Jan-13 08:32:01

Well rid IMO.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 08:34:54

He told me I am looking at my children through rose tinted glasses.
But I work with kids for a living and I know full well mine are good kids. Not perfect, but good kids.
All I can do is tell him I love them and I'm happy with how they are as people. The rest is up to him.
I don't think it's an affair. He has always adored me.
He is stressed. Not that I'm putting up with it though.
I love the bloody bones of him. Today is going to be hard.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 08:35:25

He will be going to his friend's house. A lovely guy who lives alone.

Allice Sun 20-Jan-13 08:39:39

I have no real advice, I'm sorry that you're going through this, it sounds like he's in denial and is blaming everyone but himself.

FergusSingsTheBlues Sun 20-Jan-13 08:40:58

Why is the first reaction on here that he must be having an affair? Please Dont project your own issues onto OP. He's being an arse for sure, but he seems deeply unhappy. I had a severe nervous breakdown a few years ago. I was aggressive and nasty to those around me in the months leading up to it. Currently, im pregnant, just lost my job, super stressed and overly critical of my (normally perfect) husband and son. Am I having an affair? No.

smornintime Sun 20-Jan-13 08:53:11

Hope you get to the bottom of it all mushroom. Another hand to hold here!

StuffezLaBouche Sun 20-Jan-13 09:04:20

Fairly patronising there, Fergus! I was one who suggested an affair, and i stand by it as a possibility. Certainly not "projecting my own issues" in any way. From your post, i would suggest it is in fact YOU doing any "projecting".
I hope things look up for you.

countingto10 Sun 20-Jan-13 09:16:19

Seriously do not discount an affair. My DH wasn't the type, was seriously stressed with the business etc, etc...

Of course he was having an affair, engineered arguments out of nothing to justify it and also to engineer the "that's it I'm leaving" crap, also told me it's none of my business where he will be staying "with mates" was mentioned, no one specific. You get the drift.

If his behaviour has changed relatively recently and he has upped the ante with the vileness then this is probably the reason. My DH was truly vile to me, like he had morphed into someone else.

Take care, and look after yourself first and foremost. Treat yourself to some small treats, bubble baths, new hairdo.

AlbertaCampion Sun 20-Jan-13 09:20:57

Well, I'm with Fergus. A lot of what you have written here, OP, could have been written word for word about my husband, who has an anxiety disorder.

Another hand-holder here, OP. You're going to have to grow some more arms. wink

Badvoc Sun 20-Jan-13 09:25:16

Don't assume he isn't have an affair, but dint assume he is either.
People change.
Sad, but true.
I am sorry, op' but you and your kids are well rid of someone like this.

Allaquandry Sun 20-Jan-13 09:32:28

Tbh, I imagine that because of your job you've kind of expected all the teenage grumpiness and less than perfect behaviour, so have you possibly never, ever discussed this with DH, nor got stressed by it? I expect in normal families the script is that your kids start acting a bit like scrotes, you both find it difficult to deal with, you ask each other what's wrong, each of you moans to others and you then together discover and discuss that this is all normal and work out a joint strategy. If you've not been doing that then he's probably feeling undermined at work and then undermined at home - especially if he sees you taking it all in your stride whilst his teeth itch at all the buttons that start getting pushed.

There's a big difference of course between reasoning his behaviour and excusing it, and he has acted like a total arse. But I think the above is just as likely an explanation of cause as any suggestion of an affair.

ArthurandGeorge Sun 20-Jan-13 09:35:54

I agree with Fergus.

It seems like your h has focussed massively on your children's manners out of all proportion to the actual problem (which is pretty non-existent by the sounds of it). It sounds like he has become fixated on this idea. I really suspect that it's related to his work stress and that his mental health is pretty poor.

This doesn't mean that you and the dc need to put up with living in what is an increasingly abusive atmosphere but imo it does mean that if his mental health issues are addressed you might get your dh back. But that has to be down to him.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 10:21:12

Fergus and Arthur and everybody else that has posted in a similar vein - I think you've hit the nail on the head. DS (his SS) has his own iPod touch, bought and paid for with his own money. We limit the time they spend on gadgets or else they would be on them all day long! I told him I was happy for him to use it before school (he only had one school morning with us per week) as long as he was dressed, washed, ready to go etc and it did not make him late for school.

I then found out DH had given him a 2 day iPod ban for using it on the school morning. He doesn't think he should be allowed it in the mornings before school. My compromise was the ban couldn't stand because he was doing what I'd asked, but in future he couldn't use it before school.

DH sees this as a clear example of being undermined. He can't see that there has to be negotiation and compromise, and actually he undermined me by putting a ban in place without even letting me know.

cincodemayo Sun 20-Jan-13 12:15:07

God this thread took me back....

When my previously adoring husband was having an affair, he constantly pulled the kids up on their table manners and every family meal there would be an explosion of some sort.

When he went for counselling afterwards, his therapist said that this is really common in affairs and that when people feel out of control and stressed by an affair, they focus on trivial things like table manners and children's behaviour as a means of getting some control back. Plus, if they are struggling to find things to blame in their relationship or with their wives, the kids are an easy target.

Now he's left, I'd be 100% certain this is an affair. There isn't a 'type' believe me. I'm still with my husband and we're over it, but when I told some friends about it I think some of them thought I must have lost the plot, so unlikely was it that my husband was the type to do this. It shook a lot of people up I can tell you. One friend said that if this could happen in my marriage to my particular husband, it could happen to anyone and she's right.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 12:35:27

Well he went out with the dog, came back and went out in the car. He was gone an hour or so and is now in the living room reading the paper. His suitcase is half packed in our bedroom and he has a sleeping bag in the living room. He had taken away the wii and the iPad cos the kids don't deserve them!
But he hasn't gone....

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 12:37:25

Still don't think it's an affair. Maybe I'm stupid. But I think it's exactly what you said cincodemayo - he's stressed and feels out of control and has magnified probably the only little niggle in our relationship.

cincodemayo Sun 20-Jan-13 12:41:24

What have the children done in the last few hours to deserve having their things taken away?

Don't let this be all up to him you know.

If you want him to leave, make him leave. Don't let childcare get in the way of making the right decision for you and your family.

cincodemayo Sun 20-Jan-13 12:43:11

You'd be mad to rule out an affair.

If he's always been a good husband and dad, it's the most likely cause of this behaviour.

Can I ask why you are so adamant? It's no reflection on you if he's having an affair, you know.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 12:50:45

I just know him well. I'm fully aware that sounds stupid and naive. This change has crept up as his job has become less secure. Work wise, something comes to a head next week and I think that the stress of this has been the final straw for him.

cincodemayo Sun 20-Jan-13 12:57:38

I thought for weeks it was my husband's job that was the problem. Indeed that's what he told me when I questioned him about his personality change.

He was telling the truth too, to an extent. The affair was an escape from the stress at work, but in reality it made life much more stressful.

I knew my husband well too and if I hadn't found out by accident I would have been just like you, saying it wasn't possible. Afterwards I wished I'd considered it more seriously.

Regardless, don't let him call all the shots here.

Skyebluesapphire Sun 20-Jan-13 13:19:22

I hate to join the club, but my XH was the most unlikely man to have an affair. I would not have out it on a list of 100 things he might do, that's how sure I was. Even when I discovered 100texts a day to OW, I excused it because I simply couldn't believe it....,

Sadly it turned out to be true and everybody that knows him is gibsmacked and his family still won't believe it.

MrsTomHardy Sun 20-Jan-13 13:27:35

Sorry but why is he still there??
And why are you still letting him take away your children's things??

I would give your children their things back and tell him he's leaving, like he said he was going to do!
Sorry you're going through this!

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 13:29:20

He actually told me he was leaving 'this week'. We'll see.

StuffezLaBouche Sun 20-Jan-13 13:34:15

So he's been out having said he's leaving, then cone back and said he's going 'in the week'. I think the person he was banking on staying with has said he can't at the moment so he's slunk back. How dare he dictate the terms like that? Why are the kids having their stuff taken away for no good reason?

cincodemayo Sun 20-Jan-13 13:34:46

Why are you letting him call all the shots?

If you don't show some backbone about this and be the children's advocate, you'll hate yourself afterwards.

Take control and ask him to leave now. You say he's got a place to go to, what's the delay?

cincodemayo Sun 20-Jan-13 13:36:33

I'd phone his friend and ask if he's been in touch about staying.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 14:37:32

He said yesterday he would make arrangements to leave in the week. I think that's why he went out today. I'm not expecting him to leave for a few days.
Kids are all fine, they've gone to the park together to play in the snow.

I have been washing, ironing and cooking as usual - but of course, not for him! That's gonna be a shock!

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 14:41:44

I've already shown backbone, don't you worry. He told me he was 'considering' us splitting up so I told him to consider it done. I also told him that I was not getting involved in his drama. If he wants to leave, he can damn well leave. If he doesn't leave, he can see to himself.

My prediction is he'll go this week or he won't go and will stay ensconced in the living room...but he'll sulk cos this isn't blowing over. And he can sulk as long as he damn well likes until he apologises and sorts himself out. Then maybe we'll talk.

JustFabulous Sun 20-Jan-13 14:50:46

What a horrible man!

ErikNorseman Sun 20-Jan-13 14:57:24

Can't you make him go today? It will be awful for you and the kids to have him hanging around like a bad smell. It might make him realise what he's doing too - assuming he isn't having an affair. And the signs are classic, I'm afraid. I hope I'm wrong.

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 15:00:54

JustFabulous he really isn't a horrible man. He is usually funny, affectionate, kind, caring, brill with the DCs and pulls his weight. I want that man back. He's been gone a month.

Brightonite Sun 20-Jan-13 15:04:31

I hope you are ok Mushroom - such difficult days for you. I suspect that there is much more going on here but hope that you resolve things so that you are happy, respected and in a good environment for the dcs.

this sounds like he has pushed you so you tell him to leave - removing guilt from him. "She told me to go" etc etc.

Im sorry mushroom but this behaviour isnt on - especially not using a foot near the head. I understand he didnt kick her in the head, and know what you mean but there really was no need for him to behave that way. Sounds to me like he wanted an 'out'. sad

MushroomSoup Sun 20-Jan-13 15:11:52

He's knows where he stands with regard to that, Jax. I will bloody kill him if he ever touches my children like that again.

Hope you are ok, Mushroom. I think my DH and I are at the stage you were at a few weeks back so I feel for you. My dh has changed too from beig lovely to making some hurtful comments and being a bit controlling at times. I can't see how to stop it all slowly escalating.

Consider your hand held.

HoldMeCloserTonyDanza Sun 20-Jan-13 15:16:42

Mushroom, you need to insist he leaves.

It's so unfair on the kds, him telling them he's going and then just setting up on the sofa.

I know we only get a limited view from your posts but everything seems so much on his terms. He calls you a cunt and emotionally withdraws, and you make the effort to patch things up and see if he's okay. He says he's leaving, you tell him to get out, he changes his mind and punishes the kids for nothing. You have to insist he leaves.

I d t mean to give you a hard time because you're coping brilliantly but I hate to see you put yourself out to accommodate such an arsehole.

cincodemayo Sun 20-Jan-13 15:20:13

But why would you even put up with the prospect of him sulking around the house? And why are you letting him take the children's things from them when they've done nothing wrong?

You shouldn't be predicting what he will do. Take it out of his hands. It's not going to be good for the children if you two are having a stand-off and ignoring eachother and sorting your own meals out.

Is your problem incidentally that you think that lovely men don't have affairs? Because they do, you know. Or maybe you think that affairs only happen when someone's got an unhappy home life? Wrong again.

irabelle Sun 20-Jan-13 16:24:07

Is there a role for his GP in all this?

JustFabulous Sun 20-Jan-13 17:03:37

Well I am sorry if you are upset with what I said your husband was but he is behaving like a horrible man. If he is ill or under stress then he should seek help. That is what a decent person does. He doesn't kick his child and abuse his wife.

smornintime Sun 20-Jan-13 23:06:26

How are you doing mush?

MadAboutHotChoc Mon 21-Jan-13 07:37:50

Reading this sounds so familiar - apart from the violence and removal of gadgets, my DH displayed these classic behaviours.

We blamed it on work stress etc.

He was shagging OW all along.

I didn't think he was the type to have an affair esp given his family history - friends and family members were shocked.

How are things, OP? Is he still there?

MushroomSoup Mon 21-Jan-13 20:37:03

Still here. Very odd. I think he's annoyed by me singing around the house as usual. Maybe he wants me to cry in a corner!

Badvoc Mon 21-Jan-13 21:14:24

There is another woman op
No one - no one - has a complete personality change overnight. And the most likely scenario is just that, the most likely.
It is far more likely he is cheating and following the cheaters script (check it out) than he is depressed or ill.
So sorry.

have you told him to go? I couldnt stand him being around the house acting like there was nothing going on. Would drive me crazy, maybe that is what he is hoping for. An excuse.

delilahlilah Mon 21-Jan-13 21:43:54

I couldn't stand it Mushroom, I would have to insist that he left. I have no idea as regards the affair, but he isn't behaving as someone who loves you would. You and the DCs come first, and this situation must be awful for them. He's not going to change while he's getting away with making a nuisance of himself......

Skyebluesapphire Mon 21-Jan-13 21:47:12

My XH started to change this time last year shortly after meeting OW.... I recall one day at my parents, when DD, 3yo, tried to grab his phone to play with it while he was on facebook. he pushed her away so hard that she fell over..... he had never treated her like that before.... he also got very bad tempered with her at bedtime, to the point that I had to take over several times because he was shouting at her.

Nobody that knew him here, and nobody in his family, can believe what he did. He acted so out of character, the solid, reliable, considerate, family man..... walked out overnight.

I honestly do hope for you that this isn't the case, but I really don't think that you can dismiss it out of hand so firmly. I know that because I did exactly the same thing when my XH walked out, knew that there was no way he could behave like that, but very sadly, he did...

Skyebluesapphire Mon 21-Jan-13 21:47:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cincodemayo Mon 21-Jan-13 21:53:34

What I don't understand about this thread is that there doesn't seem to have been any conversation between the two of you about what on earth is going on. Just lots of high dudgeon and game-playing, with neither of you giving in.
I can see why he doesn't want to talk (because he's having an affair I'm sure) but I don't really understand your response to this OP. It's almost as though you don't want to confront the truth and believe that as long as he's still there, everything in your world is normal. If your relationship used to be good, this seems like a strange way to behave and it must be enormously confusing for your children.

Why don't you at least try to find out what's going on and decide from there?

ProphetOfDoom Mon 21-Jan-13 21:58:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FiercePanda Sun 27-Jan-13 12:38:39

How's it going, OP? Is he still hanging about, taking away your kids things and being a mardy dick?

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