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Need your opinion on this - may seem petty

(60 Posts)
feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:11:52

Hi all

Without giving you the background to my relationship with h, I need (if possible smile) your opinion on what he said to me this evening.

I was at home all day with our 3 kids - he was out working doing a physical job so he comes home knackered.

Shortly after coming home - he had had a shower and was about to eat his dinner, he got up again to get something from the cupboard in the kitchen. In the process (after he had got what he needed) he half tripped over the open dishwasher (which I had left open as I was emptying it - but he must have seen it was open as he made his way to the cupboard). He hurt his foot which is already sore and remained bent over for a while (he did not fall over but somehow stumbled - I didn't see how it happened). He then stood up and said to me - coldly - that unless I kept the dishwasher shut in future, he would unplug it and I would have to do the washing up by hand - that he "didn't have to put up with this".

What is your reaction to this? Maybe I am overreacting but I am angry and sad (though I recognise that tripping over the dishwasher is irritating).

Many thanks smile.

scratchandsniff Mon 29-Jul-13 20:19:32

Not knowing your relationship history I'd say a knee jerk reaction from him to hurting himself.

ImperialBlether Mon 29-Jul-13 20:20:39

So he walked past the open door of the dishwasher, and avoided it.

You were still doing what? Putting things in? Nowhere near it?

He then walked back and tripped over it.

Now it's your fault.

Of course this is his fault. It's quite normal to look for something to blame when you're hurt, but most people pick on inanimate objects. He picked on you. Does he always do this?

I do think that if he walked past and the dishwasher was shut, then you stealthily opened it and didn't say "Watch out for the dishwasher" and if there was loud music playing or whatever so that he couldn't be expected to hear the door opening, then he could say, "For god's sake, you could've warned me!" It wouldn't have been reasonable but would have been understandable.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 29-Jul-13 20:21:00

He threatened you. 'If you don't do X... bad thing Y will happen'. Tripping over the dishwasher door gets you in a particularly painful part of the shin, but he reacted as though a) you'd done it on purpose, b) you deserved some kind of punishment and c) you're some kind of irritant that he merely tolerates.

Wrong on far too many levels IMHO. Hope you told him to bugger off.

ImperialBlether Mon 29-Jul-13 20:21:24

And seriously, how are you meant to put things in and take them out if it's shut?

CharlieAlphaKiloEcho Mon 29-Jul-13 20:28:50

I swear so badly when I hurt myself. Usually I am a reasonable person but stubbing my toe has caused me to say some horrible stuff before.

Maybe he is the same?

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:29:37

Thanks - I'd like to go with scratchandsniff's take on things but am afraid that your second post, cogito really resonated sad.

The dishwasher was open long before he got to the cupboard - but I do have a habit of leaving it open at times when I am intending to empty it (or have started but then been distracted by something else) but am not doing it at that time exactly....

Yes imperial he is a blaming kind of person.

BerylStreep Mon 29-Jul-13 20:31:08

I'm not really liking the assumption that he is master of the house and rule maker, whereas you are responsible for the dishes and are 'allowed' to use one of these modern labour saving devices.

Without knowing the background to your relationship it is hard to say if he completely over-reacted, or if he displays this unequal attitude in other areas of your life.

Is he likely to apologise later? If so I would be inclined to calmly say that you didn't appreciate it, and it wasn't your fault.

I take it he will be doing his own dishes by hand in the future also?

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:31:30

Yes charlie - he has a short fuse (not suggesting that you do)

I too have got cross when hurting myself, but I am not in a position to make a "I will turn the power off" kind of "threat", that's what I resent the most really.

Neitheronethingortheother Mon 29-Jul-13 20:33:26

Did you snigger when he hurt himself? Does sound like an over reaction and a bit mean but I take it you could plug it back in. Its not like he could do it though is it?

scratchandsniff Mon 29-Jul-13 20:33:33

I think we need some background info. From your last post I'm guessing tonight's incident follows others that have concerned you.

wakeupandsmellthecoffee Mon 29-Jul-13 20:33:34

I would reply "if you say that again I will keep the door to my lady garden closed and YOU will have to do it by hand "

themidwife Mon 29-Jul-13 20:34:17

Actually the bit that really annoyed me was the "I'll unplug it & YOU'LL have to do all the washing up by hand"!! Who the fuck does he think he is? Henry VIII & you're a kitchen maid?

Personally I'd go on strike until he apologises!! He can eat off dirty plates from now on!!

Id think he was just venting. I'd ignore it and roll my eyes.

People talk shite when they fall over and hurt themselves.

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:34:34

No Beryl, he never apologises for anything.

That's exactly what annoys me as well - the master of the house slant to things. We are married but he legally owns the house - this really really rankles though maybe it shouldn't. He also refuses to discuss anything like wills etc (again, not sure if this is unreasonable or not). I feel on possibly shifting ground and very dependent (not in a good way).

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:37:14

I didn't snigger, but I did keep completely quiet because I was waiting for some kind of backlash. When he said what he said I kept quiet and with my eyes averted sad.

It's difficult to describe our relationship. We are not affectionate with each other and have issues which are never discussed (though we did attempt counselling last year). We rub along ok some of the time and some of the time really not.

cozietoesie Mon 29-Jul-13 20:37:42

I can understand the doing it and the general annoyance both. (When I've been seriously physically knackered it's sometimes made me almost blind to my environment and easily ready to stumble into things and hurt myself.)

What would concern me would be the translation of that annoyance into a threat which was (in effect) against you.

Has he ever turned annoyance against you before?

Liara Mon 29-Jul-13 20:38:01

This is awful. Both dh and I end up the day absolutely knackered, we do a very physical job and take care of the dc. We are often on a short fuse by the end of the day, and can snap at each other.

But this was more than that. As you say, it is the assumption that you use the dishwasher at his consent, and that if he decided to remove it you would have to do the dishes by hand.

If dh ever even hinted anything like that there would be a flaming row and he would be doing all the dishes and loading and unloading the dishwasher for the foreseeable as an apology.

And it would be him who instigated that. (ditto if it was I who was similarly unreasonable, btw)

cozietoesie Mon 29-Jul-13 20:38:20

semi x post.

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:39:10

Maybe rolling my eyes would be a better way of approaching things (rather than feeling all angry / unloved). It's true that I would plug it straight back in grin.

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:42:30

Yes - he is a blaming / negative / bad tempered kind of person (who can be more lighthearted when in a better mood). Liara, I agree that it is awful sad.

Basically, if I died h's life would not change at all. If he dies, all hell would break loose for me. This is what I resent. H has completely insured himself against feeling emotionally or financially hurt... He is previously divorced and extremely bitter about his financial losses there.

AnyFucker Mon 29-Jul-13 20:42:52

if you are married then the house is an asset of the marriage and would be divided appropriately were you ever to divorce

did he tell you something different ?

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:45:21

No - he does know that anyfucker and has said so before when I have asked to have my name put on the deeds. Last year in counselling, however, he did say that he had bought the house before we were married hmm. We were already living together however, and got married about 4 years later when ds was born.

ImperialBlether Mon 29-Jul-13 20:46:50

In your position I would seek legal advice, just out of interest.

Do you work outside the house, OP?

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 20:48:06

No I don't unfortunately. My earning potential is pretty low too so it all seems impossible. Someone tell me it isn't please!

themidwife Mon 29-Jul-13 20:49:28

He's sadly mistaken OP, you are his next of kin. If he dies by accidentally falling onto a sharp knife in the dishwasher you get the lot unless he has made a will & left it to the cats protection league. Also if you divorce & you are a SAHM with kids, you'll get at least 50% no matter how big & clever he thinks he is. If he made you sign a prenup you were coerced.

AnyFucker Mon 29-Jul-13 20:50:24

Go get some legal advice, love

Many family solicitors will offer a half hour free...get the Yellow pages out tomorrow and start ringing round

Knowledge is power, and at the moment he thinks he has it all

I think you will be pleasantly surprised that he most certainly does not

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 29-Jul-13 20:50:46

You're frightened of him, aren't you? Keeping quiet waiting for a backlash is a miserable way to live OP. Of course he doesn't want you on deeds etc. He thinks he owns you, the house you live in and everything inside it. Never mind that he's previously divorced. He shouldn't be taking out his bitterness and foul temper on you.

I'd seek legal advice if I were you... get some proper information on your rights as a DW and it might give you some confidence to challenge him. You'll find you have a much bigger claim to that property (even if it was pre-owned) than he thinks.

themidwife Mon 29-Jul-13 20:50:49

Either way you could contest a secret will or his insistence he owns the lot because the law protects children. And you have children.

ImperialBlether Mon 29-Jul-13 20:50:54

How old are your children? Would you be interested in going back to college and retraining? September's coming up and colleges are desperate for students!

How would you like to live? What kind of job would you like to have?

AnyFucker Mon 29-Jul-13 20:53:09

name on deeds (or lack of) will make no difference in the divorce petition

you are primary carer for the dc, you would be entitled to stay in the house with them until the youngest is of age...then it may be sold but you would be entitled to at least half (based on all sorts of things like the potential difference in your earning capacities)

your H is an ignoramus, as well as a prick

Does he think you would be unable to plug it back in yourself?

It was a fuck awful reaction but had to judge with no context. I notice you said he does a physical job - doesn't give him the right to behave like an arse

ageofgrandillusion Mon 29-Jul-13 20:54:19

If i were you OP I'd go see a solicitor and find out what's what re the finances, the house etc. This guy sounds very, very bitter.

AnyFucker Mon 29-Jul-13 20:55:00

I am not a solicitor, but there are some very helpful and knowledgeable ones on the legal and divorce/separation topics

check 'em out

just for information, like...

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 21:02:26

No, no prenup. He is not financially mean on a day to day basis at all, just very self-preservative as he considers himself to have been fleeced while divorcing his first wife.

I am a little frightened of him. Not physically in the slightest or on a day to day basis, but if he is in a temper then yes - frightened of what he can say and the way he can say it - leaving you feeling devastated.

I think he does know that if we were to divorce I would get half the house, but I imagine the whole process would be deeply unpleasant.

I think with regard to having no will, the wife gets a portion and the children get the rest in trust. It sounds greedy to want things done differently but I would feel more secure if I knew that it was going to me (and then from me automatically to the children when I die) because the portion that I would get would be nothing where we live and so would mean huge upheaval. There's also the matter of inheritance tax that he could avoid. It's kind of a superstitious thing on his part - he would rather not talk about it or tempt fate, but I think it needs dealing with. I brought it up in counselling last year and he accused me of having researched it... I do understand that from his point of view, a wife he does not seem to be getting on with who wants to discuss "wills" is a weird thing. From my point of view however, part of the reason I find him difficult to get on with is because it feels as if everything is on his terms.

Will consider your question imperial, after I have put the dcs to bed.

Thanks for your answers.

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 21:06:08

He is very bitter.

Yes, need to find out what is what with regard to my "rights"... Might feel more confident regardless of whether we get divorced or not. At moments like this I feel like dumping everything and living miles away.

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 29-Jul-13 21:06:55

There's no inheritance tax on money left to a surviving spouse. But that's by the by really. His whole attitude is not driven by superstition but by the desire to control and dominate. To him you are not an equal partner but another piece of property. Wonder if he barely tolerated his first DW as well?

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 22:40:02

Hi again

In answer to your question imperial...

2 years ago now, I completed a year long certificate course to become a teaching assistant. I have since volunteered at my dcs' primary school, but getting an actual full time job is much harder, with 100 people applying for the last one I did not get an interview for. I haven't yet tried the agencies and may have more luck there, though one of the things that puts me off is the bad pay. It would be ok if I think of it as something to do while being with h, but I suppose, since I spend some of my time wishing h and I were divorced, part of me would like to earn more than 12,000 a year (pro rata!) (roughly, though it varies from school to school and area to area - also a little with experience).

The other thing I could do is written translation from Italian and French into English (I used to be fluent in both but both are very rusty now). I could do courses to brush up both these languages and then look for translation work (despite the fact that I don't have any translation certificate though I suppose I could work towards this long term as well - it is apparently very hard).

Otherwise I don't know really. I love interacting with and being with people generally which was one of the reasons I wanted to work in a school. My experience pre children (who are 7, 9 and 11) was secretarial and Teaching English as a Foreign Language. This year I was involved in a campaign to stop our school being forced to become an academy and I have to say that it was fascinating and I began to think I would like to volunteer for an MP with a view to eventually working for one, or that I would like to transcribe parliamentary debates... but this now seems more pie in the sky, and also, what I really want is to be financially independent.

When I am in "h and I have to be divorced" mode, I imagine myself in a peaceful little cottagey type of house with the dc (obviously they would not be with me all of the time sad), and with roses growing over the front porch confused.

feelokaboutit Mon 29-Jul-13 22:40:32

Should add that I am 44 so do not feel as if I have time on my side sad.

EarthtoMajorTom Mon 29-Jul-13 23:48:15

You sound like a really nice person, OP. Hope you can find a way to get that peaceful house. I think it's the peace you want, and the roses would just be the icing on the cake.

feelokaboutit Tue 30-Jul-13 08:14:10

Thanks Earth smile. I have made my share of mistakes - also in the context of my relationship, so have contributed to its deterioration. However I think it's obvious that h a. doesn't like me, b. is never going to consider me an equal partner and c. is always going to ultimately control the really big decisions because he does feel that he is the one doing the "work". It is true that I am crap at housework but really, I don't know to what an extent this is some kind of rebellion...

I've just remembered that a few nights ago we were all watching "A Place in the Sun: Home or Away" and there was a couple looking round a house in Spain that they both liked. The woman said she loved the house and couldn't believe it was going to be theirs and my h said something along the lines of... "she's spoilt - she's not paying for it" hmm angry. I was also wondering how on earth he would know who was paying for what because for all h knew she might have been the one funding the move???

He's ok sometimes. Can also be quite nice when very relaxed... However, generally I think I would rather not be with him that be with him. He can also be embarrassingly not politically correct in some of the things he says.

I suppose the worst thing about "us" is that none of our disagreements ever get spoken about or resolved, instead when arguments happen we don't talk for ages. It is not me who would want things to be this way, but h quickly becomes angry in an argument so it then feels like a risky thing to do because it is never (the argument) reasoned.

Anyway, onwards and upwards!

themidwife Tue 30-Jul-13 09:00:37

Feel you sound like a really intelligent resourceful woman with a lot to give. I think if you were free of his dominance & the general gloom you would flourish. Yes you may have a short period on benefits & I can bet he won't move out easily but it will be resolved by the legal process if you can wait for that.

maddy68 Tue 30-Jul-13 09:19:59

Without knowing anything else. It sounds like a knee jerk reaction to being hurt.

lordleofric Tue 30-Jul-13 09:42:51

When I read your op, I thought what Maddy says^^^.


When he said what he said I kept quiet and with my eyes averted.

made me shock

delilahlilah Tue 30-Jul-13 10:08:15

Same here. Averting your eyes is a form of submission. It sounds like you resent him being domineering. You shouldn't feel like you are walking on egg shells, it isn't fair to you or your dc.

BerylStreep Tue 30-Jul-13 17:30:05

It's not really about the dishwasher at all, is it?

feelokaboutit Tue 30-Jul-13 18:42:13

No, sadly it isn't. Have gone round and round in the same circles for so long but I never seem to move forward.

AnyFucker Tue 30-Jul-13 18:51:44

that is because you are dancing to his tune, love

Anniegetyourgun Tue 30-Jul-13 19:16:48

I remember earlier threads about him giving you the silent treatment. Sometimes he's not so bad doesn't seem like a terribly good reason for staying with someone who treats you with such contempt and often hostility.

I don't think you should have left the dishwasher door open though! Even if he thoroughly deserved to trip over it. (Cynic wonders whether he stumbled over it on purpose to make a point.)

BerylStreep Tue 30-Jul-13 23:46:30

Apologies for bringing up previous threads - I know it is bad form.

I have just searched under you name, and you have started 23 threads about your poor relationship - I haven't looked at any of them, but maybe you should revisit them? From the volume alone it would seem that this is a long running issue for you.

AnyFucker Wed 31-Jul-13 00:02:36

23 ?

fuck me

so you are never going to "feel ok about it" are you ?

accept things as they are, or do something about it

a stark choice, but best to make it I believe

themidwife Wed 31-Jul-13 07:32:02

I've just read all 23 thread titles honey. This can't go on. This is emotional abuse. I know you worry about the house & money but you must leave (he never will). You will get your share through the courts eventually but no amount of money or property is worth this. Do this for your kids if no one else. They are growing up to believe this is how to treat people they "love". I know it's hard to face up to the "failure" of a marriage but I think 24 separate threads describing an abusive relationship is pretty overwhelming evidence isn't it?

feelokaboutit Wed 31-Jul-13 09:11:06

Yes there are times when I am very down and annoyed. Other times when things feel better and I don't post. Generally I don't think h and I really want to be with each other. I would if only he would really talk but he is obviously never going to do that.

Am thinking of a way in which I can make a better life for myself - starting off within the "confines" of my "relationship", and then moving on to possibly living separate lives at some point. On the other hand, it could be that once some of my stuff is in place (like having work blush), I will feel much less dependent and therefore much happier. At the moment I keep on waiting for him (or anybody!!) to magically come in and sort things out for me, but that's never going to happen...

Am becoming a bit obsessive about this whole who owns the house business though, or what I perceive h's thoughts to be on this.....

Sometimes feel like suggesting that we sell the house and split the equity - in some ways this would also liberate h as he could pay off the mortgage and would probably be a lot happier without me, but getting from there to here is a monumental task as when I have mentioned splitting up in the past he has simply said "fuck off then"....

At other times things are better for a bit and then I feel much happier because I would rather things worked out between us and our dc lived with both their parents at the same time.

If it was just me I would be on the other side of the world by now!!!

feelokaboutit Wed 31-Jul-13 09:13:25

Have also worked out that I have now lived longer in my current location with h than I have lived anywhere at any time in my life, and I really would like to try pastures new!!! Dc happy at their school though so.....

Allycat Wed 31-Jul-13 09:24:11

You are legally entitled to half of everything he has. Marriage supersedes any previous arrangement unless he made you sign a prenuptial agreement.

BerylStreep Wed 31-Jul-13 17:43:36

when I have mentioned splitting up in the past he has simply said "fuck off then"…. Charming hmm

You mentioned you have been to joint counselling together - maybe it is better for you to go to individual counselling, and start breaking that insurmountable task of leaving him into bite sized achievable pieces.

If you make a plan so that say, in a year's time you want to be living apart, what do you need to do to achieve that? For example:

1. Find a solicitor

2. Get legal advice on what you are legally entitled to, and what process would be involved in splitting up, including likely costs and timescales.

3. Discreetly gather up information on all assets and make copies - mortgage, approx value of house (look at others online), savings, his income, work pension, ISAs, PEPs, other investments.

4. Find out what benefits or other money you would be entitled to. There are online calculators.

5. Keep plugging away on the job front.

6. Confide in someone in RL.

7. Maintain a (secret) diary of incidents and how they make you feel.

It looks like a lot written down, but if you promise yourself that you will do / start one of these a month, then you are better prepared and informed than you are now. None of the steps I have outlined above commit you to anything - you are just finding out the lay of the land.

Above all, promise yourself that you will not still be in this situation by this time next year.

PS - I am sorry for bringing up all the other threads - hope it won't make you NC.

themidwife Wed 31-Jul-13 18:14:08

That sounds good advice Beryl. I did the same between 1999-2000. It took 18 months but after careful planning I left with 2 DCs & moved 150 miles away from an abusive man. It was much better to plan than panic & run.

BerylStreep Thu 01-Aug-13 20:37:41

Midwife smile I bet you are a million times happier! Well done!

themidwife Sat 03-Aug-13 00:12:17

Temporarily! Have made a couple of mistakes since then! Independent now though!

Bant Sat 03-Aug-13 01:31:29

Sorry I feel I should butt in here. You are not 'legally entitled to half of everything he has'.

If it comes to a judges decision, the judge may give you everything or nothing as they see fit. Generally they would prefer to see an amicable settlement. If the husband can justify why some things are required for him to continue work to provide for the children, or that they belonged to him before the relationship (which seems to be the case here) then the judge may grant a significant financial benefit to the husband. Is it really fair that a man works and saves and buys a big house, meets a woman who then 4 or so years later is granted half the house without taking anything else into consideration?

The judge will consider the best situation for the children, generally, but 'you have half of everything' is such a huge overgeneralisation that it's breathtaking in it's naivete.

Sweeping statements like this are a bit ridiculous to encourage a woman to leave her husband. She should seek legal advice from someone with access to all the relevant information, not feel satisfied with random comments from people on a web discussion forum.

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