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do i stay or do i go ?

(76 Posts)

DP and I have 2 children ds 3 and dd 4 weeks ....... I am currently struggling to figure out if our relationship is at all worth it.
I will start by saying dp is a good man with good intentions and he loves us dearly he works very hard full time and private jobs in spare time he tries to help at home sort of ! ..

but I find as soon as he is home our lives (mainly mine) become so much harder - too hard if im honest .
although he tries to help at home he gets everything wrong ! I have to tell him how to do everything and within minutes he has forgotten . and once I have told him he doesn't the know it he will have to ask me again the next time .

ds has no consistency between the two of us although we do discus it all in great lengths and have yet to disagree on any aspects of parenting and the way in which we apply guidance . yet after we have discussed it he cant remember what to do and will ask me what to do in front of ds .
at home it is a massive battle to keep in place the daily routines not because he doesn't agree with them ,in fact he shows enthusiasm for it all but he just doesn't do it or doesn't remember ...every evening he will say what do 'YOU' want me to do.
He will leave things out of ds night time routine the same one we have done since he was 2 months old .
dp read in a book yesterday about quiet play at bed time not to over stimulate etc etc however last night I heard them screaming and shouting water everywhere ds giggling until he had a coughing fit. which is wonderful to see and hear (bar the coughing) but not after extensive research about how to help him to sleep. which has been an on going problem bedtime drama .... this is one example out of a million
it probably sounds like he is just a 'typical man ' but its so much more than that .
I am struggling to cope (with him ) I am becoming like a prison warden telling him what to do and I don't like who I am feels like there is nothing in our relationship except arguing and discussing this stuff am I just being dramatic or r we doomed??

can I add he is brilliant at his job maintenance manager and the things hew can figure out without much effort amazes me ..

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 02-Nov-13 11:42:31

The beauty (and the pain) of a two-person relationship is that there are two personalities in it ... which means at least two ways of doing things. Means there have to be compromises and adjustments. Also means capitalising on everyone's strengths and compensating for weaknesses. If you are the one that is hot on daily routines and he's better at firefighting and problem-solving then you have to find between you a way to make that work. This actually means him coming up with ways to remember things rather than saying 'what do I do next?'. In his job how does he keep on top of regular tasks? Charts? A diary? Post-it notes?

Pick your moment to discuss but place the responsibility more on him to find the solutions. Good luck. Not easy.

annielouisa Sat 02-Nov-13 12:00:00

He does sound like he is trying to hard to please you and follow your parenting guidance rather than something you have agreed together. You have decided how things will be done and he is just getting in your way.

I had a friend like this who had a wonderful, hardworking OH who also pulled his weight at home but he did not do things her way. She nagged him and sometimes belittled him in front of others for failings she saw. He was a high achiever at work but became a nervous wreck at home.

My friend admitted to me she viewed like one of her DC to be disciplined and she had little or no respect for his opinions. I asked why they were still together and she said they loved each other. I am different love and respect go together in my relationship.

Things have obviously become very hard for both you and you need to regroup and see what you both need from your relationship.

I learnt that parenting is a balancing act and if people having differing views within a couple it can never be "my way" it has to a blend of ideas that works for both parents.

Lweji Sat 02-Nov-13 12:02:13

I have actually found that a good giggle before bed can help with sleeping.

There was this time DS was taking a long time falling asleep for his nap, and I decided to change the scenery while at the same time giving him a giggle. You should see the look of disapproval my parents made (at their home then), but DS then fell asleep very quickly. It raises levels of endomorphines and creates a sensation of relaxation and well being.

Having said that, there is no reason he can't be responsible for some things at home, if he's quite capable at work. Agree on him being responsible for whatever is fair and he'll have to learn how to do it properly, and I'm sure he'll remember it.
If not, he should deal with the consequences.

Loopyloulu Sat 02-Nov-13 12:12:19

Does he have some sort of problem-seriously- with his short term memory- unable to remember anything?

You see either he has a real problem- dyslexia/ dyspraxia, Aspergers-or he is just taking the p... and can't be arsed to really engage with you and take responsibility like an adult.

The more you do for him then the less he'll learn.

It's time for a really honest talk and maybe an ultimatum- he pulls his socks up or you consider parting.

Vivacia Sat 02-Nov-13 12:17:34

There aren't any examples of him doing anything wrong. He's just doing things differently.

Vivacia Sat 02-Nov-13 12:18:31

It's time for a really honest talk and maybe an ultimatum- he pulls his socks up or you consider parting.

Alternatively (and who knows which is nearest the truth) perhaps OP needs to show a bit more patience, kindness and respect to his way of doing things.

Lweji Sat 02-Nov-13 12:22:22

Also, why on earth you have the same routine with your DS since he was 2 months old? Children grow up and don't necessarily need an exact routine every time. Does your ds have sleeping issues? Does your OH forget tooth brushing? Putting on pjs? Putting on a nappy? Kissing goodnight?

AnyFuckersfrogslegs35 Sat 02-Nov-13 12:48:07

I'm not saying you're wrong for feeling how you do and if your DH is really the way you describe then I can see it would be annoying but I'm going to jump in and ask.....
Could you be over reacting due to hormones and tiredness etc...?
I honestly don't mean to upset you with that question, it's just when I had Ds3 everything that my exdp done (or didn't do) infuriated me for at least 6/8 weeks afterwards, sometimes it was for minor stuff but sometimes he couldn't even breathe in the 'right' way.

Have you sat down and discussed with him how you're feeling and what would happen if you simply said 'the same thing we always do everynight' in answer to his 'what do you want me to do' question.

itwillgetbettersoon Sat 02-Nov-13 12:48:22

Perhaps time to adapt your routines. Your child is older now and nothing better than having a good giggle with dad. I'm not too good on routines either - doesn't mean to say I am wrong - I would say I am adaptable and flexible. You need to talk to him but parenting is a shared job and it sounds like neither of you are wrong.

cece Sat 02-Nov-13 12:56:25

Do you think you might have PND? You do sound quite controlling of the situation at home. Your DH is just doing it differently not wrong imo. I mean this in the kindest way but I think you need to re-evaluate and let DH take some ownership of what he does and not tell him all the time how you want it done. Laughing at bedtime seems a fun thing to do really isn't it?

Matildathecat Sat 02-Nov-13 13:19:58

You had a baby four weeks ago. Try to relax a little. He sounds all right to me. At the moment you seem to be treating him like another child and so he's acting that role at home. I can see it's annoying but try to step back and pick your battles rather than find fault with everything. Otherwise I see a time very soon whereby he comes home less and less.

Other option...a sticker chart?!

sorry for the absence I have had trouble getting on without dp seeing ...
all these are questions u have asked I am asking myself ! and I cant seem to figure out the answers .. I am not sure if the he is this way because I am too controlling or if I am too controlling because he acts this way ...

in return to some of your comments - its not the laughing and giggling at bedtime that is the problem its the fact that he did research on helping ds to sleep came up with a strategy for us both to try which included quiet play at bed time and the next night bath time was louder than ever .

I did suffer with pnd with ds so am looking for the signs! but I feel ok so far other than this ..

I have talked to him about this before and we have discussed it at great lengths, most days in fact to some degree .. have left before and threatened recently there is some change lately but it just seems so hard all the time ...

frogs legs - I say this all the time but often results in a face , horrible comment or argument

ok some examples - ds has been at school a year , same days and hours dp still asks me what time he fins , starts etc . even though he spent 4 months taking him while I had HG with pregnancy

asks me what feet ds shoes go on .. has also walked round shops with his own flip flops on wrong feet.

ds goes to bed 7.30 every night has done for over a year he still asks shall I put him to bed now ?

ds toys always go in same places ds actually has to tell dp he has put them in wrong place

ds naps at 10 everyday dp dp agrees this is essential for non deman behaviour but whenever he is home has him at that time it doesn't happen .

looses his phone every day resulting in a full search .

also he disagrees with most things I might think are a problem eg I said the cat had wee'd in the bathroom dp said no the toilet was leaking .. it didn't smell like human wee I had to shove the litter tray at him for him to finally agree .. cat has been pissing in the bathroom the whole time I was preg ...

I sad ds room is damp , dp said no ds now has bad cough and there is mould round the window ..

there are loads more things and general stupid questions that have all evaded me right now but please I need brutal honesty I seriously don't now if its my hormones (pregnant /post pregnant or otherwise my hormones r totally mental )
or if I am just fighting a loosing battle with him.

LEMisafucker Sun 03-Nov-13 21:56:31

Have you always been such a control freak or is this something that has come on with the birth of your second child? It sounds like the poor guy can't do right for doing wrong, but you don't sound happy either - i think you need to talk to your doctor.

Lweji Sun 03-Nov-13 22:15:18

If you give him responsibility over something and don't help him out in a consistent way, what happens?

Lweji Sun 03-Nov-13 22:17:52

Still, is the bedtime routine that important now? Does he have sleeping problems? And you should know that sometimes things happen and fun starts. A one event should not be a problem.

Retroformica Mon 04-Nov-13 02:13:02

When he asks you what next, ask him how he is gong to remember things? He needs to make a note to himself?

Retroformica Mon 04-Nov-13 02:14:35

You do sound very controlling but I really empathise as my DH drives me crazy with similar stuff.

BillyBanter Mon 04-Nov-13 02:36:11

Have you tried just letting him get on with it even if he does do things differently or wrong. Presumably he's not so forgetful at work. If I ask all the time it's lack of confidence or inconsistency from a boss so I never know what will be right or wrong today. Maybe it's better to let him learn from experience rather than from instruction.

How about you go away for a couple of days? Take the youngest if you are bfing. It's hard to imagine that someone could be so inept yet hold down a job.

Vivacia Mon 04-Nov-13 06:59:53

It sounds absolutely exhausting being the one who has to be in charge all of the time.

Stop being so helpful / in charge? If he asks what time school finishes say, "it's on the fridge". Ie instead of giving the answer, give him the means to find it himself. And then try to take advantage of the lack of responsibility or busy yourself with something else.

These things obviously are not one off's if they were I would not be on here looking for advice

we have talked about it until blue in the face he has said he will try harder he has said he will make lists

I have tried leaving him to it .. getting his in put asking him to make some decision so that he may remember them (he completely forgets his decisions ) I feel I can't just let this happen with my two children suffering the consequence's therefore I have to take control (not a control 'freak') I am very organised but haven't always been I have learnt to be since having children .

If I give up and let him get on with it everything goes to crap and then I have to try and fix it and get everything back to normal ...

billy - I am always pointing out to him that I cant understand how he can be soooo organised at work he delegates , prioritises. he is he there and everywhere and still gets a glowing report and was even employee of the month a while back .

it really seems like he wants to do all these things and has intentions but never actually follows through with it .

in our old flat we had a list of everything that had to be done in the evening and he would still come and ask me what needs to be done . when I say check the list he would get annoyed with me !

the bedtime routine is extremely important with ds as he is a terrible sleeper it is a constant battle with him. and we have come up with a carefully constructed routine with sleep consultant to help him and us get some sleep. if his routine gets lost he doesn't sleep and becomes extremely hard work and quite badly behaved when tired although a very well behaved boy in general . the routine has changed as he has got older but not a lot . and dp has been involved in every step and every change

Badvoc Mon 04-Nov-13 08:05:34

You sound very very rigid in your rules.
He does sound forgetful and perhaps disorganised, and I am not sure there is anything he can do about that tbh.
It's a personality trait and one I assume he has always had?
My dh can be a bit similar.
It is frustrating being the responsible one all he time.
Perhaps stop and see what happens?

slindile Mon 04-Nov-13 08:21:23

i totally get your pain.

my dh is like this to some extent too. will forget things we've discussed, forget things we've been doing for years and look at me like i'm mad when i remind him we've been doing it for years.

it has gotten better as the kids have got older tbh. i think you have to take the long view. i don't think it'll always be this bad. nothing worse than small children to ruin a relationship imo.

so do you want to be with him in 10 years if you take this problem out of the equation?

i would tell him that you're on the edge and he needs to step up. then when he asks a question he can easily find out the answer to just give him The Look. keep on.

this is how i manage with my dh. if i can find the irritation bubbling up i say 'i don't know' / shrug / 'sorry, can't think about that now.'

i do think there are probably lots of things you can back off on. but stay on top of the important things like the bedtime routine. decide beforehand what you're prepared to let go.

To be brutally honest I think the problem is you. I wouldn't want to live in an environment with such rigid rules, and where everything I did was wrong. I think if you relaxed you might actually learn something from your DH.

I'll hold my hands up, I used to be a bit like you. I have a much happier life now, it's more fun, and dd is thriving despite the house being a bit chaotic at times.

aturtlenamedmack Mon 04-Nov-13 08:48:59

I felt this way for about 10 months after my ds was born. I wanted things done a particular way and felt that my dp was more of a hinderence than a help. As a result I did almost everything and wouldn't allow dp to help no matter how hard he tried and then resented him for not helping enough.
I had learn that different doesn't mean wrong and that my ds would benefit from both our parenting styles. Neither was the 'right' way of doing things.
Remember that if your dp works full time he probably feels as though he is missing out on some of the fun and games that you have with your dcs and wants to maximise his time with them when he has it. The playing with your dcs at bedtime is probably quite important to him.
Also, seriously consider the alternative - becoming a single parent. If you are realistic, it won't be any easier, it'll be much harder.
Of course there are many circumstances where it is absolutely the right decision to make, but the relationship that you describe sounds like you can work on it if you want to.
I think you should stop threatening to leave, it isn't fair to use this to get someone to behave the way you want them too.
If you want to leave then do so, and if you don't then you need to find a way to work through your issues as a family, but threatening him like that won't improve the situation in the slightest.
Have a really good think about what your life would be like without him and decide if that's what you want.
If you decide to make a go of the relationship then you need to think about how you can both change your behaviour and compromise to improve the situation. His behaviour isn't the only thing that needs to change, you need to reflect on your own too.

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 04-Nov-13 09:00:14

The thing about the flip flops...has he got some sort of memory issues in general or just about householdy type things? You can't be reminding him to do EVERYTHING or he wouldn't get himself up each day so is it just family there anything he does remember?

AnyFuckersfrogslegs35 Mon 04-Nov-13 10:11:11

Judging by what you've said regarding DP's job, he obviously doesn't have any real issue with his memory.

I do agree with some other posters in that you sound a bit controlling and rigid with the rules. I get that to a point - if a certain routine makes our lives a little easier then we try to stick to it but not everyone will agree nor do they have to follow - to be honest, your Dp sounds as though he's sometimes walking on eggshells.

Asking what feet shoes go on is a bit lazy of him and I admit that would make me hmm

If you want to stay together then you definitely need to find a compromise without the threats to leave etc... it doesn't help anyone. Unless of course you really can't see yourself with him in the future and actually want to split.

Out of curiosity how does it go when he does something that you feel is wrong?

Dp - What time does ds start school again?
you- you know he starts at 9 hun, how did you forget when you've took him so many times?

Or is it more like -

Dp - what time does ds start school again?
You - Oh FFS, how many times do I have to tell you?

wakemeupnow Mon 04-Nov-13 10:57:29

If you want the schedules stuck to you are going to have to set things up to help him remember.

My Dh can be forgetful and he sets himself reminders on his Ipad. Could your Dh put alarm/ reminders on his phone for naptime /bedtime etc. Can you clearly label the toy box. post it note on his forehead grin List on bathroom wall etc.

I think you are gonna have to accept that he's annoyingly crap at routine and set up a complete idiot proof system of reminders.
At the same time you have a newborn and must be tired... try to let go a bit. He's probably worried about getting things wrong and lacks confidence to take the initiative.

Just wondering - you say he couldn't work out which foot to put which shoe on for your Ds and has walked around himself with flip-flips on the wrong feet.

Could he possibly have undiagnosed dyspraxia? Dyspraxia isn't just about clumsiness but often about having serious problems organising yourself, confusing left and right etc.

Does he have to work very hard to stay organised at work? Or does he have a PA that helps him with this? If he is having to concentrate very hard at work to hold it all together it may be too much for him to do it at home too ( if he does have dyspraxia).

I'm not saying he must have dyspraxia - just wondering whether you or he have considered it. If you google "dyspraxia - symptoms in adults" you can see if it sounds any thing like your dh. By the way - you don't have to have all the symptoms to be dyspraxic and dyspraxia can also have degrees of severity.

nomdesw2 Mon 04-Nov-13 11:40:33

I'm dyspraxic. Sounds like possible dyspraxia to me......

don't children need a routine to feel secure ??

I think because dp works all different hours I find it hard to keep to a routine maybe i'm over compensating by making it too strict .
what do others do in way of daily routine ??
frogs legs I started off with the 1st one but now defiantly the second one ....

I think what makes it worse is that he tries to make out like things are my fault little things that probably don't matter but all the time when we both know its more likely that's it his. he constinly tries to cover or blame shift mistakes so now I feel I need tro make a point of it

I was trying to assess the situation last night and I think our tone with each other is half the problem he will huff and puff when I ask him to do something although he actually doesn't have a problem doing it and we both no he will forget if I don't ask...

I do think the situation is worse at the moment because I am relying on him a lot to help me as I am bfing 24/7 and there is always a very short amount of time to get things done .. I am also concerned that ds needs his routine to stay consistent as he has had a lot of change recently with dd being born , 2 weeks before that we moved , and I was very ill all through my pregnancy

it seems to be unanimous that I am over controlling I think again its something I am over compensating for as things get very difficult if I am not organised and I now have a bee in my bonnet because I have to pick up the slack a lot of things . but how can I make life easier but also let things go at the same time I feel life just be kaos and I will constantly be lookigf for things

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 04-Nov-13 11:48:24

Maybe you could just stop telling him what do to and how to do it?

Let him be the kind of father that comes naturally to him.

Especially now that you have a newborn to deal with, just leave him to deal with the older one when you're all together and you sit and breastfeed.

You would reduce the stress in your household enormously if you stopped caring so much about stuff that isn't really that important.

So what if he read a book about being quiet before bed and then didn't implement it straight away?

He needs to respond to his own child in the way that feels natural to him.

What are the GOOD things about the way he parents?

It sounds like he is fun, that's a good quality in a parent. What else?

You have a 4 weeks old baby, this is not the time to be thinking of leaving your partner because he drives you up the wall.

Lweji Mon 04-Nov-13 11:49:50

I wouldn't say it's unanimous. smile

I do think there may be aspects where you might be. I feel this is difficult to evaluate without watching you both.

However, I would say that children thrive on some routine, but we don't need to be slaves to it, neither do they.

In particular during changes, sometimes there needs to be some flexibility.

His attitude as you describe it is not helpful, but it could easily have arisen in response to a more controlling attitude on your part. For example, if he doesn't do something the way you think it should be, do you complain? I think it's significant that he was able to be in charge when you were not around.

How would you describe your conversations? You convincing him of how things should be done, or a genuine exchange of ideas and making a plan that suits both?

wow just googled dyspraxia ....... spot on . other than riding a bike and DIY which is his speciality he seems to have most other symptoms ...

I suppose I do mostly tell him what we are doing as I spend my days looking into how to raise the children eg , parenting cources , mums net books etc therefore relay the info back to him which he then agrees with . as he doesn't have time to read and research

In all honesty he did cope while I was ill while working full time looking after ds and looking after me ... although he drove my best friend mental asking her what time ds was at school as she would drive him some days .. when I returned to the world ds was eating all meals in front of tv and had a staple diet of chips and fish fingers
but actually still managed to get employee of the month during this time .

he has no PA he organises himself at work and others !

just too add I don't keep threatening to leave .. we broke up while ds was 10 months mostly for this reason and have recently had a discussion where I sad that if things don't get easier we have no choice but to part.
I must admit

Vivacia Mon 04-Nov-13 13:14:56

rocky you sound so similar to me at that stage - researching (because I love learning) rather than relying 100% on instinct and natural ability. Reacting to uncertainty and the ties of breastfeeding by becoming more controlling and bossy.

I remember complaining to a mother figure in my life about having to do everything myself and OH not doing anything right, and she very gently pointed out that perhaps, with me, he just couldn't do right for doing wrong. It was like a light switch went on. I didn't want my children growing up with that around them. I realised that to me it was more important for my loved ones to feel respected and trusted and capable than it was for Things To Be Done Properly.

Matildathecat Mon 04-Nov-13 13:34:43

Do you think he could be dyspraxia or similar? Putting shoes on the wrong feet is odd. Other problems with processing information and remembering instructions do sound like an actual problem as opposed to just being annoying or scatty.

I know with kids like this you have to, for example, only ever give one instruction at a time, remove distractions, use visual timetables. Sorry, but no idea how you help adults.

Is his mum around? Might be worth discussing with her if it seems appropriate.

To be fair, he sounds like he's really trying. The fact that he's willing to keep discussing the issue with you does indicate that he accepts he has problems. Have you actually asked him what works? In order to navigate adult life he must have some quite robust strategies.

I hope you can work together to improve things. Do try to relax a little and enjoy your baby. The fact that even though he knows pretty much everything he does is 'wrong' yet he still keeps trying makes him sound like a pretty solid chap.

If the bedtime routine is so important (and I agree it is), why don't you do it and let DH do the baby or cook dinner?

If you think dyspraxia might be an issue, then your DH might be able to access some help with managing it - if that is what he wanted. The first step might be for him to see his GP with a list of dyspraxic symptoms he thinks he may have and ask to be referred on.

The dyspraxia foundation have advice on getting help here including an adult support group. They have advice about managing everyday life on the website as well.

AnySpookyWolfyFucker Mon 04-Nov-13 18:10:21

You know this, because you've done it before, but 4 weeks PP is a frustrating time. If you are anything like I was, then you are spending a lot of time sat breastfeeding, perhaps without a free hand to even read a book with, not being able to do stuff yourself, in the order and way you would do it. But with loads of time to think about what needs doing, and you have so little time to yourself and the time you do have has to be prioritised into trip to the loo/eat/sleep/wash.

I was pretty snappy and demanding of DH at that time not so much because of what he was doing/not doing but because of what I wanted to do but couldn't and expected him to do. It was a bit easier when I realised that I was frustrated with the situation more than anything else. And of course, gradually things got easier as DS got older.

I wouldn't make any hasty decisions now about your relationship. Prioritise the things that are important to you and find some way of communicating these effectively to DH. Try and let the other things go. Let him get as involved with baby as soon as you feel comfortable about it so you get adequate time to rest/eat/shower/do the things that niggle you. DH did most nappy changes when he was home and bathtime.

I think that since becoming a mum, I have reminded DH sometimes that I am not HIS mum, and that he needs to use his initive. Hopefully if dyspraxia is an issue for your partner he can get help figuring out ways to compensate.

since reading your advice I have been trying my hardest to keep my nit picking -nagging- to a minimum and I have actually noticed a number of things that I possibly don't need to nag about !! ..
also spoken to dp about dyspraxia but have not had time to look into it properly yet but read out some of the symptoms and he seemed interested in taking a look .. (although he always is )

school time are on the wall and have a plan to make lists of our general routines to remind dp so he doesn't need to keep asking me !

However yesterday .. we were supposed to register dd ,to book it I looked up the name and number of our local registry office forwarded it to dp to arrange an appointment because its his schedual we need to fit it into so he booked it .
yesterday I went to enter the address into the sat nav and dp asked "aren't we going to the z registry office "
so I replied in my calmest possible voice
" oh is that where you booked it because I sent you the details for x registry office "
He said "I don't know" so I said u must remember where you booked it did you call the number I gave you or look up a different one.. again he replied "I don't know I cant remember " . then he said well you must know I sent it to you in an text and began to start an argument as I f I was being difficult . . so I checked the text and it just said .. booked 4tue
so we couldn't figure out if it meant booked for tue or 4pm tue as we thought it was at 4.30 and still didn't know where it was although he had arranged all of it ! this then became my fault.. needless to say we never made it !

oh and I thought of another example that me ..

he got ds easel out to do some painting and when they had finished they left the stuff all over the bathroom floor so I kindly asked dp to tidy it all up -maybe with a slight attitude- and he put the pots on the side to be washed up and folded the easel down but left it where it was so I then aske him again and he asked me where it went . so I said .. but you got it all out .
he says yes but I cant remember where it goes so I tell him to figure it out himself and he causes a massive argument as if its entirely my fault that he doesn't remember where it goes even tho he got it all out only an hour or so ago !!

Mumsyblouse Wed 06-Nov-13 15:26:31

Ok I think that four weeks in and you are micro-managing everything and everyone as a way of coping with what is really overwhelming- having a tiny baby in the house again.

It sounds like your husband doesn't know what to reply to you to make it better, he asks you constantly where things go/what to do as you get cross if they are not done correctly (your correctly mind you) and this irritates you more.

You are stuck in a pattern where he is like the child and you are the bossy parent, telling where/when/how to do even simple things- which is not necessary for either of you as he is perfectly capable, as proven by the fact he has had sole care of your first child for a while and is organized at work.

The real shame of all this is that you say you are hanging onto these routines and rigid schedules for your eldest child, but the far more devastating thing for him will be the break up of his family and not seeing his dad every day. That's a pretty high price to pay and far worse than a bit of giggling at bedtime.

Can you talk with a good friend, or your GP or HV to get a bit of perspective on all this?

Mumsyblouse Wed 06-Nov-13 15:32:17

And- by the way, I'm not saying it's not irritating if people don't clear up immediately after themselves or they ask what time is school finishing again, but in general, these things can be dealt with by a quick neutral 'can you clear that up?' and 'the usual time, 3.10' rather than nastiness, arguments and so on.

I just think you are missing the bigger picture, and the bigger benefits of having a hands on dad who is also a good earner and has good intentions.

But I think this type of niggling and misunderstanding and stress is very typical of the little baby stage where you are all sleep deprived which is why I wouldn't make any massive life decisions right now.

Wow - get him an appointment with the GP fast.
It sounds like some kind of issue with remembering things.
There may be a lot they can do to help him.

It sounds exhausting to be honest and I don't blame you being frustrated, but I think you need to rule out things like dypraxia before you call this quits.

wakemeupnow Wed 06-Nov-13 16:23:00

This sounds pretty severe memory loss. I'd second get him to a gp just in case it's something more serious. He may also be pretty exhausted with work, toddler and new baby which could be effecting his abilities

CinnabarRed Wed 06-Nov-13 17:02:15

He's either suffering from serious short term memory loss - in which case he needs to see a doctor ASAP - or he's taking the piss utterly. I can't tell which from the thread.

The part the doesn't sit well with me is the fact that he can cope at work.

Do you think he genuinely can't remember where he took the easel from, or which foot to put shoes on?

Jan45 Wed 06-Nov-13 17:16:05

I agree with above, he's either got something seriously wrong with his memory and/or how to process information or he simply doesn't give a toss. I can see why folk are saying you sound like a control freak but tbh you'd have to be to be able to cope with him, he sounds like a child that needs constantly reminded to do the basic of things. I would find it impossible to live with someone like this, I'd probably end up really resenting them and wondering if there's much point in being with someone so incompatable.

Lweji Wed 06-Nov-13 19:37:32

It is odd. And perhaps a gp might be able to advise.
Do you know if such memory lapses would be noticed at his work?

I may sound like 'one of those women' but I really don't think its that he is just taking the piss .... If I thought that I wouldn't be worrying about it he would be out of the door !! like I said he Is a good man in soo many ways and his cup ru..neth over with love for us all and he seems to try hard but just doesn't seem to be able to help this ...

I used to be similar no where near as bad quite forgetful etc. but then I found if I wasn't organised everything went to shit !! and I didn't mind making up for his short falls as he was great in other ways but after having children it became way too difficult .. I can see he tries but it doesn't make a difference .

I will defiantly suggest going to the Dr but do I go in with him and explain on his behalf or does that scream control freak .. as I worry if I send him in alone he will forget everything and they will get knowhere

I think also I tend to get even more annoyed about it because he will initially try to turn the blame around onto me , make out its normal or he hasn't done anything wrong .. this is what causes the arguments .

always realises and apologises later

CinnabarRed Wed 06-Nov-13 21:14:26

Honestly, if the alternative that you're seriously contemplating is ending the relationship then I would make it a condition of your staying that he goes to the GP, with you there too.

CinnabarRed Wed 06-Nov-13 21:16:52

And I would also request an explanation from him about how he copes at work but not at home. And not a "dunno"-and-helpless-shrug answer, but one he has given serious, proper thought to. Which you know he can do, because he does at work....

cjel Wed 06-Nov-13 21:16:59

I do understand how frustrating it must be living like this but I think that it could be a bit of both!! you don sound a bit over controlling as in' 'I have to get everything back to normal' that depends what 'normal' is and if you are expecting too much, but also all this not remembering is not good either.

Could you go to the drs together and then you could ask about you relaxing and him not remembering.
I found that the most stressful time of my life was having two little ones (only 2yrs apart) and wanting to have a picture perfect life for them.
Now having grandchildren I realise that what I fretted about actually added to a not very nice home sometimes.

Hope you can sort something out before you implodesmile

Lweji Wed 06-Nov-13 21:20:56

I'd think it's important that you go too and make sure all your concerns are mentioned.
I don't think it's controlling. For one he may not remember or give enough importance to some events. And other things he may not have realised.
Even if you prepared a list, the gp may ask questions that you haven't antecipated.

BillyBanter Wed 06-Nov-13 21:39:10

Go with him if you can.

Otherwise although a GP can't discuss a patient with someone else you can write to/discuss with the GP with your concerns and examples. So if he makes an appointment you can do this, and even if he doesn't you can still alert the GP and they may bring him in for a health check or some other excuse.

quick update on ds behaviour so I have talked to him about all and have seen definite changed at home we are s lot more co-operative .. ds is trying harder with the general routines and I have notices loads of things that I am picky about that don't actually matter ..

yesterday ds forgot his phone at work and remembered half way home and when I huffed (I just couldn't help it I will try harder next time ) he got annoyed with me causing a mini argument as if it wasn't an issue but I am the only one that drives and have two screaming children one who hates her car seat so every moment in the car is like a time bomb waiting for her to sceam... also he forgets things from work all the time which I then have to go and drop off or pick up ...

also has dropped his phone and broken it for the second time this week ... [sigh]

just having a moan at this point really !!

was wondering what MN'ers thought about me actually showing ds this thread so he can see the advice from fellow humans on the subject

cjel Fri 08-Nov-13 18:50:09

I wouldn't show him that you have been talking about him, I also wouldn't put screaming dcs in car just because he forgot something!!! Hes not 7,

wakemeupnow Fri 08-Nov-13 19:05:58

I think Op had to drive back to get phone with Dc because DH doesn't drive confused
I can't immagine showing him this thread will have a good outcome...

cjel Fri 08-Nov-13 19:10:42

I know why she was doing it but unless she is his chauffeur I wouldn't do it, there are feet, push bikes buses, taxis?

wakemeupnow Fri 08-Nov-13 19:29:24

Op's Dp reminds me of my teen ds ... , it's a thankless task having to micromanage someone who resents advice but then demands that you pick up the pieces

mummytime Fri 08-Nov-13 19:50:24

Well with my teens, I DO NOT always pick up the pieces. In this case I wouldn't go and drive to pick up his phone, if it was that important he would have to go and get it (walk. Bike, bus, train, taxi).

With breaking the phone, I would be tempted to have a cheap and nasty phone he can use until his is fixed.

With looking after the children. Go out and leave him to it!

He needs to learn. You are not his mother. His way will not be your way, but will probably be okay.

If you LTB he will have the DC unsupervised even more than now.
Good luck!

Lweji Sat 09-Nov-13 00:04:23

Yes, do let him pick up the pieces.

If he can't drive, that's his problem and he'll have to remember to take things better.
If I forget something at home or at work, I'll have to wait for the next day or until I return. It makes me more careful about not forgetting things.
They are not your responsibility to fix.

whoselifeisitanyway Sat 09-Nov-13 11:48:41

Adult ADHD? The phone thing made me think that.

Or he doesn't care enough to remember. Household routines don't matter much to everyone.

so I am back with update on the latest ...

so you were right letting him read this was a bad Idea (I told u so's not necessary ).. I honestly thought he would see that we both need to work on things but all he said was 'there right you are controlling '
he has since booked an appointment at DR to discus it which is on Friday but I had to really explain it all out to him .

however I have been holding up my end of the bargain and trying to let him get on with things on his own ..
we ended up at farm on my sons birthday without a buggy and having to carry baby, picnic, changing bag and toddler round all day ..

also on my 2 lie in days since dd was born ..

lie in day no.1- breakfast was sweets eaten on the sofa in front of the tv lost tv remote and phone as usual and kitchen to tidy .

lie in day 2 - was today , when I went to bed last night I left a glass on the table above ds toy box and the cat knocked it over in the night smashing it .instead of clearing it up dp went out then came back and cooked bacon sarnies .. he did tell me to be carful because a glass had broken and he hadn't hovered I assumed he had cleared it up and was just making me aware .. when tidying ds toys and found massive pieces of broken glass in the toy box and on the floor where ds had been playing all morning while I was in bedroom and dp was in kitchen ..

when I got annoyed dp assured me that he told ds (3yrs )not to go in his toy box and then reminded me he did tell me as if it was all my fault that I had left a glass on a table and said I was being melodramatic resulting in massive argument and dp punching a wall ... (ds luckily in bed napping at this point )

he is still asking me stupid questions and I feel now he is just doing it on purpose to make a point .. he will ask me where things r before he has looked , still putting ds shoes on wrong feet and still ignoring things we have discussed the night before or even in the morning ,
we don't see much of each other as he is working 2 jobs and I look forward to the nights he stays out as everything is easier . when he told me he had a day off today my heart sunk as I new it wud be hard work and ds would misbehave as he does when dp around ..

we just argue any time we see each other and I still cant stop him arguing or airing our issues in front of the children which I feel shouldn't be my job to control . I feel as though I am at the end of my tether.

Twinklestein Sun 08-Dec-13 22:48:52

Broken glass in the toy box is just negligent.

I don't believe you're being controlling OP, he sounds exactly like my BIL who, despite having a good degree, a highly successful career, cannot remember diddly squat at home. And you what? He just can't be arsed. He has very little self discipline and is fairly chaotic and all over the place, he does what he fancies with the kids irrespective of the routine. Clearing up is left to my sister.

My sister, who is the most laid back person I know, is then driven mad constantly having to nanny/chivvy/tutor him through everything. She worries that it makes her into a nag, so I point out he gives her no choice. If she wasn't project managing, family life would descend into chaos. I don't need to nag my husband for anything, we decide who does what & then get on with it.

Your husband is basically failing to take responsibility for being a father. He doesn't need to remember anything because he doesn't think it's his job, and he knows you will always have the masterplan stamped on your brain. Your DP may have dyspraxia/ADHD/poor short term memory issues, but if he was this shit at his job he'd be fired, so I infer, at home, he's not actually trying.

clam Sun 08-Dec-13 23:11:42

I don't think you're being controlling either. He sounds a complete nightmare, to be honest.
I had a colleague at work who was like this - drove me mad, and was made worse because I was officially responsible/liable for his cock-ups. Fortunately he resigned and moved away.

...what do I do now ? I feel like we just don't get on anymore.
every day with him is such hard work I feel as though we make each other worse as parents and as humans .
its sounds evil but part of me hopes when we go to the Dr he tells us there is something seriously wrong with him to make him like this so I can accept its not his fault .

I asked my friend about being controlling who is always very honest and has been brutally honest with me in the past . and she said I am very VERY organised (with a laugh ) but she see's that I have to be with my dp I don't have a choice and that she couldn't do it herself !

I feel as though the love I once had for him is slowly turning into resentment. I feel like lately he has just stopped trying or he will wake up with all the intentions of trying and positive attitude but has thrown it out of the window before we have even finished breakfast and the rest of the day if full of us being niggly , narky and just trying to put a lid on us arguing with little or no success . only if I constantly keep my mouth shut or do everything myself .

hookedonchoc Mon 09-Dec-13 22:17:52

Sounds like a nightmare OP, so sorry for you. I suppose I would wait and see what the GP says. Are you going in with him? Possibly if a medical professional tells him he has a problem he will be less argumentative and more willing to accept your way... but that doesn't ease the issue of you basically parenting him.

The glass in the toybox is scary, do make sure the gp is informed of that along with the other issues. I can certainly see why you are hesitant to leave him to get on with it where the children are concerned.

Regardless of the outcome with the gp, might you consider relationship counselling? Sometimes when a partner hears another person's perspective on the relationship it can wake them up as they realise it's not just you being unreasonable.

I know it's hard, but try not to worry too much, children are very resilient and these early years don't last forever. At least your dcs have the love and best intentions of both parents, whether you end up together or apart knowing they are loved is most important imo.

thanx choc.. we have had relationship counselling in the past and I believe it worked and we are on a waiting list for it again now but don't have a lot of money and its very expensive especially as I need him to learn to drive as I think this will ease a lot of pressure off of me .. he is also doing anger management and has booked the appointment with the GP himself so its not like he isn't trying because he does these thing in between working full time , plus private jobs on days off and in the evenings and college 2 eves a week anger M on a Monday eve . so we r struggling to fit it in . had a long chat with BF this eve and she agrees DR should help and reminded me 2012 we were so content having actually been on holiday with us that year she saw all of us up close and personal ! but I do feel he is getting considerably worse at the moment and i'm worried i'm fighting a loosing battle

ThingsThatGoBumpInTheNight Tue 10-Dec-13 03:59:51

Pick your battles?
How about choosing things that really piss you off, bedtime play for example, my p was THE worlds worst for winding the kids up like springs just before bed, 'horsey' rides round the living room ect. On discussion he thought he was tiring them out, I explained that no, it made them too wound up to sleep and suggested he read them stories instead.

Your dp sounds like a good man who is trying his best to help but missing the mark. Bullet pointing certain really irritating things rather than constantly nagging reminding him of things will end up with him feeling he's not good enough.

Time to sit down and set some parenting ground rules on which you both agree I think x

ThingsThatGoBumpInTheNight Tue 10-Dec-13 04:04:14

Oops that will teach me to tea the entire thread lol sorry op

Grizzlygrowler Tue 10-Dec-13 06:07:46


We have a ds who's 2 and a baby who's 8 weeks. I've had to go back to work which is a ft job, another second job and also 2 nights a week at college. I'm knackered but do this to provide for my family.

My dp is understandably tired and so when I come home I try to help out as best as I can. Dp likes things done a particular way and so I am always conscious of adhering to that and am forever asking and double checking what needs to be done and how to make sure it's right.

Ds is still not a great sleeper and we have been doing the same slightly adjusted routine for 2 years. The other night he just wanted a bit of a play and with working all the hours god sends, a newborn and a house move I just wanted to spend some quality time with him. Dp then got frustrated that this wasn't done in a way that we had discussed we would.

I came and played with ds the other day and after a fun time painting I asked where the easel went. Yes I had got it out and forgotten where from, yes this can be frustrating but instead of just giving me the answer when I ask I get snapped at. A lot of the time it leads to arguments as I'm under constant criticism.

I'm on edge as soon as I get home because if I don't do it dp's way again I am criticised and berated.

It's things like flip flops, they are pretty much the most androgynous of shoes and I get confused as to what feet they go on, one time I wore them on he wrong feet. This is still brought up now to show what an imbecile I am.

I can't drive and so have to rely on dp to pick me up from work. I'm that tired and on edge because I know that whatever I do won't be right that I forget stuff. I forgot my phone the other day and the usual belittling onslaught began.

I just feel exhausted with working so much, I come home and really make every effort to please dp but am just constantly made to feel like shit for not doing it their way, when I ask I never get a simple answer and feel attacked.

Dp basically went on an Internet forum stating that I'm shit and she wanted to leave me. Most of the comments acknowledged that they were controlling but instead they focused on the ones that said I might have dyspraxia and how the problem is me.

I love my dp and dcs but don't know what to do because everything I do is criticised and I'm slagged off, berated. I'm really trying but am exhausted and then have to come home and walk on pins.


just bumping as I would love outside perspective on what grizzly has written (who i'm guessing is actually my DP)

I would like to add that I feel he is completely missing the point and seems to have read this and only focused on defending himself -blame shifting- rather than the matter at hand which is sorting out our relationship! - the fact that dp has said I have come to mumsnet just to 'slag him off ' speaks volumes!

ThingsThatGoBumpInTheNight Wed 11-Dec-13 11:29:00

I think fwiw that it's not your dp more like someone putting the situation from his perspective.

Thing here is empathy I guess. And working together, accepting each other's faults, helping each other to improve in areas where we need to buck up our ideas. Putting ourselves in the shoes of the other person who is doing their best to help but being made to feel like it's not good enough.

Marriage is a hard business lol no wonder divorce rate has shot up, people must think 'shit this is too much like hard work, let's just walk away'

Glad I've never been married wink

hookedonchoc Wed 11-Dec-13 12:16:43

I doubt it is your DP, but if it is I would say to him...

Ask yourself: Is it okay to leave broken glass where a small child is playing? If you think it is, then imo yes, you are being unreasonable. If the mother of your child is at breaking point and you are willing to play the blame game rather than try and see things from her perspective and do whatever you can to fix things, then yes, imo you are being unreasonable.

It doesn't sound like you think any of this is a big deal, and maybe you're right. But she is telling you something is terribly wrong, and you are basically saying "Nah, it's fine." And you accuse her of belittling you? Even if her concerns really are unfounded, surely she has earned the right to have them taken seriously.

mummytime Wed 11-Dec-13 12:41:07

I think Grizzly is just trying to re-spin what you have said to see how it might appear to him. Probably in an effort to get you to empathise with how things seem to him.

To be honest if you can't empathise with him, as it truly sounds that you cannot, then yes you should leave him. But I'm not going to cal him a bastard because I'm honestly not sure he is.

You do also have to realise as I pointed out earlier, if you leave then he will have "unsupervised" contact with your children, up to 50%. You also will then have to let him parent your children as he sees fit. Something a friend of mine is struggling with having split from her husband (I can tell she would really like, and actually has at times, tell him how to look after their children).

I seriously cant seem to get through to him !!

this week I have asked him not to come home , he stays out 2 nights anyway for col /work etc and had his xmas work do on thurs. (this is all perfectly lagit' he stays at my mums empty house 10 mins away trust has never been an issue ) and we will reunite for ds school play on fri
so I thought it was a good opportunity for some space . I haven't really spoken to him except when absolutely necessary. but this morning we have been texting and he seems to have gone completely mad borderline verbally abusive (he has always had a way with words in terms of getting quite nasty and feels the c word is appropriate when he is really angry this is what the anger management is for ) he is telling me i'm sick because I wont let him see the kids - to be clear I have said I wont bring them to see him UNTIL he calms down and I can trust he is not going to continue arguing with me and making snide comments in front of the kids . he hasn't shown any signs of being calm .

He is now telling me I have depression ,because I had pnd with ds I feel he is using it against me we both know i'm not depressed i'm upset because our relationship seems to really be going down the pan!
in most of his messages he is saying im nasty (a couple said nasty piece of shit ) and im sick and I need to get help ! and he is completely defending himself as if he has no idea what the problem and making out like I am over reacting completely !

I tried to explain that we DO need relationship counselling and it would benefit me too and his AM will only work if he actually applies it at home but the problem really is him!
I raised my voice in front of ds the other day and he wont let it go telling me i'm the problem and I need help!! I feel bad enough as it is and always try to keep a lid on it in front of dc's but its so hard when I am the only one trying and ds will ask over and over whats wrong if I tell him he wont let it go , if I keep quiet he still wont let it go and if I completely act as if nothing is wrong he will flip out when I try to discus it and ask why i was fine earlier but not now!

the biggest problem is I don't want him around the children at the moment as he just refuses to rein it in in front of them .. even just huffing sand puffing , oh god's and general niggly remarks every time I open my mouth or make a face a disapproves of ! he has such an aggressive face that when he snarls at me all of this makes it alarmingly obvious to super intuitive ds that there is something very wrong !!
dp just isn't getting it and isn't backing down or doing anything to help the situation and ds is missing his daddy like mad and every other word is 'I miss my daddy when he is working' and 'im sad when daddy is at work' ! I have said yes I miss daddy when he is working to and we will see him very soon but he has to work hard to get all our xmas presents !

I do empathise with all of those things as I keep stating he is a good man good father is under a lot of pressure and very tired !! BUT I am very tired also and feel I am the only one trying when it comes to our relationship and he isn't at all anymore not to say he hasn't in the past !! and I honestly feel he doesn't empathise with me at all and if it appears that he does its because its what he is supposed to do not because its what he feels...... if that makes sence

the weird thing is this all happened when I had ds and we broke up for about 6 months he saw I was serious and stepped up ant the following year was wonderful and consistent then we had another baby and our own place together and its all happening again

do I hope that as dd gets older and with some RC its worth sticking it out or do call it quits now.

also if we were to break up I do feel this is what I really worry about him looking after the dc's alone and what sort of partner he may then have but I cant stay in a relationship with him just to supervise him ...can I ??

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