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To not want to deal with DP anymore?

(109 Posts)
attheendnow Tue 08-Jan-13 14:34:17

MY DP has been out of work for over two years now. In Jan 2011 he was working in finance with a generous salary. but was made redundant as his boss wanted early retirement and closed the company.

In Feb 2011 dd was born and I am now 6 months pregnant with DC2 which is what we both wanted, we are delighted after trying for a year that I fell pregnant and feel very blessed.

I do a bit of book keeping in the evening when dd is in bed, but this pays only about £200 pcm. DP had a huge amount of savings and this is how we have managed to survive and pay the mortgage on his flat and live frugally for the past 2 years. (He had the flat before we met, we have been together for 5 years but not married - both fine with this.)

He has had job interviews (not many) but nothing has come of them. He is a wonderful man and father, but without a doubt, the type who waits for opportunities to come to him, rather than seeking them out.

I am now entering the third year of him unemployed and it is unbearable. He has been at home with me EVERY SINGLE DAY for the past 2 years and it is stifling. I take dd to as many classes/groups as I can to give us space but he is depressed (although refuses to admit it) as he has nothing to get up for.

I have tried everything, GP. counsellor, life coach, friends, family getting involved - I even got him a temp job but he wants another high level corporate job and refuses to settle for anything less.

I have now reached the end of what I can do for him. He will not listen to me or our family and I am at my wits end. Our money is literally about to run out. I have no income to move into my own place to give him the kick up the ass that he needs and also don't want to take the children away from him as dd and soon to be dc2 is his only purpose and focus.

Every day he gets up late, goes online or reads, watches the lunchtime news and does nothing. I give him jobs to do and force him to take dd to soft play and out in the afternoon so he has a focus. He does go the gym regularly which is something but it is like living with a depressed man of retirement age. I now am struggling to keep smiling and am becoming so stressed worrying about the future for us as a family.

Returning to work is not an option until I've had the baby and even then I would not be able to earn what he did and I don't think as a SAHD he would take both children out regularly and give them the interaction they need.

I don't know what to do - it is literally a case of he refuses to work. He won't make any effort and whatever suggestion you throw at him to retrain, try a different career he rejects it and won't help himself. I love him but cannot live this life for any longer - it's really affecting my health and wellbeing.

flow4 Thu 10-Jan-13 01:18:00

OK, I haven't read the entire thread, but from what I have read, I'm perhaps going to go against the grain here...

OP, you have my sympathy. I was in a similar situation with my Ex - or rather, his position was similar to your DP's though my own was different to yours, because I was the main earner as well as the main home-maker...

I think people under-estimate how difficult it is to live with someone as depressed and inert as your DP sounds. Like yours, mine wouldn't get a job, and was convinced he 'deserved' something great, but wouldn't do anything to make it happen. He signed on, but then even that became 'too difficult' so he signed off. He loved the children, and minded them while I was at work; but he just watched films and played music and went for walks, and I often came home to hungry kids as well as a trashed house. sad

Eventually, it all became too much for me. I had one lot of counselling, then another, and was prescribed anti-ds. With hindsight, although it sounds odd to say it, I think that kind of depression is almost infectious: if you live with someone who is seriously depressed, it can also drain the energy from you. I can easily see how you have got into a situation where you have become passive and helpless too...

You need to break the cycle, for your DCs' sake, as well as your own. If you don't, I think your situation will continue to spiral downwards. I split up from my Ex, but he is still depressed, and (8 years on) has just got his first bit of part-time work in almost 20 years. He has become a heavy dope smoker as well as a drinker. Like your DP, he had an inheritance - around £100K - which he blew - it is all gone. shock

I think there are several ways you can 'break out' of this. You could get a job. Or get counselling. Or start some studying. Or move house. Or make a resolution to do something new. Or yes, you could leave him.

(Oh and BTW, leaving him does not mean you have to 'take the kids away from him'. My Ex and I have stayed living very close to each other - about a third of a mile apart - because this means he and DS2 (not so much DS1) can keep up their very close relationship. I found it very difficult at first (bumping into each other in the local shops, for instance), but it has become easier over time).

IMO it does not matter what you do at first; it matters that you do something. Once you have broken the pattern of helpless inertia, things will start to move and improve again for you. Betcha! smile

Cabrinha Thu 10-Jan-13 00:28:44

Oh spare us the "you don't know what it's like to be told you're unlikely to have children" line.
You know what? My first child: IVF. My second child: doesn't exist. Cos, y'know - cant afford another.
It's harsh, but them's the breaks.
I actually have a lot of sympathy for prioritizing children (long term happiness) over short term issue. Low income? Go for it, you'll manage. But NO income? (£200 really doesn't cut it).
You should have resolved this before TTC.
And the line about fertility... This wasn't your first child, you'd been lucky once. Just because you've had trouble conceiving, gives you no more right to ignore practicalities than anyone else.

HoldMeCloserTonyDanza Wed 09-Jan-13 23:48:25

It's funny how many threads come back to the old chestnut of "how many hours working do you both have? / how many hours leisure do you both have?"

There's only one fair formula there, and it's to keep both figures broadly equal. Sure, there's wiggle room when one of you works heavy manual labour, or is breastfeeding a wakeful baby throughout the night. But most of the time, you should no be pulling a similar amount of weight work-wise and enjoying similar amounts of downtime.

For two years, he has been sittingon his arse fooling himself that he's too special to jobhunt, while you have raised and cared for your DD, jobhunted for him, and worked in the evenings.

Come on, now. You know that's not a fair split. You've let yourself be a mug. Why, for heaven's sake?

How can you respect a partner that's so deluded they don't think they need to work? Who you can't trust to mind his own child?

Does it not just eat away at the love and respect you ought to feel for your life partner?

MysteriousHamster Wed 09-Jan-13 23:31:31

I just don't get why you didn't look for some work for yourself while he was at home, even if only temporary work. It seems as if you've simply gone 'well why should I' and that's that.

Your bookkeeping work - could you not have asked your partner to keep an eye on your child while you did that in the daytime? Then you could have either relaxed in the evening, or done bar work, or more bookkeeping work.

I'd have gone bonkers sat at home with my husband and child all day every day but with no money coming in.

MrsBonkers Wed 09-Jan-13 23:11:41

I'd like a second child and the clock is ticking......
We can't afford it.
Shall I just get pregnant anyway???

NO, because that would be irressponsible!

Just hope we can afford it before its too late.

3smellysocks Wed 09-Jan-13 23:01:06

Athing. Her DH isn't into the child caring and so clearly wouldn't be the best SAHD at the moment. Also he is clearly depressed.

In your shoes I'd take DH down and sign on with him. Also make a GP appointment for him and go with him to discuss the depression.

I know you are looking after the kids during the day but is there anyway you could take on a bit more book keeping?

Also ask him to apply for a few jobs a week.

HappyNewHissy Wed 09-Jan-13 22:36:16


Mumsnet: YABU

OP: you're all soooo MEAN!

Proudnscary Wed 09-Jan-13 22:15:37

AThing was not spiteful, she was truthful. Truth hurts. Read this thread again tomorrow with a fresh head OP, and really hear what posters - an overwhelming majority - are saying to you.

AThingInYourLife Wed 09-Jan-13 22:03:37

Great post, kungfu.

DontmindifIdo Wed 09-Jan-13 20:59:31

so you were able to get him in to a career, coach hm, push him etc, but not do these things for yourself? What if you treated yourself as your project, not him? Could you have achieved the same?

Re your example of cooking and cleaning, if one partner refused to clean anymore, you could do it yourself but then refuse to cook so they'd have to do it. You didn't need to give up being a SAHM to being a 'fulltime working outside the home single mother juggling childcare and work' - you could have completely swapped roles. You are refusing to accept things haven't turned out the way you want.

Leaving and finding your own flat and supporting yourself is an option. Doing nothing isn't.

LingDiLong Wed 09-Jan-13 20:57:39

I'm afraid I'm another one who agrees with AThing. And yes, I've read and digested all your posts. I understand your frustrations with your DP but you both sound like 'passengers' in your own lives, neither one willing to take the driving seat. Haven't you ever even discussed you going out to work and him taking on the childcare full time - at least til he finds a job? My preference is to stay at home with the kids and that is certainly our 'plan' but when my DH had to quit a job unexpectedly (due to bullying) a while ago, we both were terrified at the prospect of no income and BOTH looked for work. Just because your DH was the breadwinner previously it doesn't mean you can abdicate all responsibility for earning any money.

RedHelenB Wed 09-Jan-13 20:53:00

It seems you are really good at finding possible work for your dp so hopefully you will be able to use these skills in finding something suitable for yourself. I hope it all works out but the only person you can rely on in life is yourself - harsh but true!

TandB Wed 09-Jan-13 20:34:16

It is also entirely possible that the DP was never cut out for a high-flying job of that sort. His depression might be a symptom of having tried to be something he isn't, and having failed at it.

Adversecamber Wed 09-Jan-13 20:18:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TandB Wed 09-Jan-13 19:53:48

It's a bugger when things don't work out the way you thought they would.

But most people are able to pick themselves up and get on with it. Things change. You can't just dig your heels in and say "but this isn't what I signed up for." Families deal with life-changing situations all the time - people lose jobs, become bankrupt, become ill, disabled, people die. If you aren't willing to change your life plan according to the hand you are dealt, you are in for a rough ride and probably, ultimately, a lot of bitterness and regret.

You've had 2 years to come up with a plan B and you don't seem to have made any attempt to alter your own plans or expectations to fit in with the big change that his redundancy made to the family. I find your more recent long post really troubling because you effectively say "well I could get a job but why should I when he is just choosing not to?" The reason you should is because you are a family - if one member is struggling (and if he is depressed then yes, he is struggling) then it is up to the others to pick up the slack.

I really struggle to understand why you've continued to rely upon him when he is clearly not in a position to be relied upon, whether through illness or through deliberate stubbornness. You are clearly capable of working - you need to start thinking of yourself as someone with equal choices and responsibility for the family finances.

If you leave him, you are going to be in a worse position - you will have two children, no child support and no realistic chance of working due to childcare costs. If you stay with him and take over the role of the main breadwinner, then you have childcare covered so all your income can go towards the family pot.

If you really want to leave him, of course, that is a different matter. But to walk out on someone because you aren't able to get your head round the fact that your circumstances have changed, seems a bit daft to me. You either want to be with him or you don't. But for goodness sake, don't make that decision based on the life you thought you were going to have in terms of money.

HappyNewHissy Wed 09-Jan-13 19:32:09

"You have no idea who got him to change his career and got him his job in finance in the first place, who tutored him through certain exams, who set him up with contacts and pushed for that job to be a reality - it was me. You have no idea what type of career he or I was doing when we met, what our agreement was regarding our life plan, who would be the provider and who would take on other responsibilites. "


"...Again, you have no idea about the type of temporary jobs I have found him and attempted to secure for him - all are rejected"

So basically this guy has ALWAYS done FUCK ALL then? You got with him and fashioned him into the kind of man you wanted him to be.

and he went along with it.

Has it not occurred to you that you dragged him way out of his natural habit of the pretty poor?

This man has no gumption, no drive, ambition, spunk.

.. Well actually that's not strictly true, but not the right kind of spunk that gets him off his arse to help the family.

You could and should have got a job, that's what everyone round here woud do. I know of two highly educated men that have been made redundant and have thrown themselves into SAHD when the wife gor the job first. Of course the women would prefer to be SAHMs, but NEEDS MUST.

There is no poinmt you getting at AThing, she's bang on right, and you can see that most agree with her sentiment, if not her wording.

This is AIBU, and you AND your feckless P ARE BOTH U. Thank your lucky stars you're in a country that does have national health, benefits and credits.

Sort it out, sort yourself out. He'll never sort himself out, you have yourself a moneypit with that one.

He showed you what he was when you met. That's still him.

chubbychipmonk Wed 09-Jan-13 19:27:05

As per my last post I do have sympathy for OP as its a horrible situation to be in. . .

However when I WAS in that situation I upped my hours from part time to full time, DH was the SAHD while he looked for work. & I spend my nights wrapping up things to sell on eBay and my days off either at the post office posting eBay parcels or taking clothes to cash for clothes . . . Literally every penny helped! . . . All whilst being pregnant!

Have to say I do agree with a lot of the posts (harsh as they are to hear) that the OP really should be jumping on the job hunting bandwagon also!

WorraLiberty Wed 09-Jan-13 19:24:15

I think AThingInYourLife was spot on to be honest.

Truthful and spiteful are two completely different things OP.

maddening Wed 09-Jan-13 19:02:13

Ps walking out will not make it better. You need to work as a team while it is still salvageable.

maddening Wed 09-Jan-13 19:01:16

You still have not answered the question of why during the last 2 years you have not BOTH been looking for work. Is there something beyond "the life plan" that is stopping you from working.

What you both did before is irrelevant as is how you got your husband a job.

When he was made redundant, which is why you're in this position, is when your attempts to find work becomes relevant. Maybe the first few months but at a certain point you should have joined the job hunt - unless there is a physical reason you could not find work.

What to do now is far more difficult - your dh's state of mind and his job prospects have suffered and you both need a serious discussion and he needs to speak to a gp and a careers counsellor. You need to develop a plan and commit to it.

LindyHemming Wed 09-Jan-13 18:59:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PumpkinPositive Wed 09-Jan-13 18:56:55

OP's last post is erm... interesting. She sounds a bit intransigent with a v simplistic view of the situation.

It would surely be easier for her to work full time supported by a SAHD than leave him, and have to try and juggle working around caring for two kids on her own (unless she'd prefer HIM to be the resident parent to whom she pays maintenance?)

EuroShagmore Wed 09-Jan-13 18:47:33

There are home truths on this thread and some blunt speaking, but no spite that I can see, and I agree with much of what has been posted.

Fortunately for you (less so for the poor sods who are working hard to pay the taxes to fund benefits) you will probably be entitled to benefits that will help you get by. Personally I think they should help you for the next 6 months, until the new baby will be 3 months old, and then you should be looking for work if your husband won't (I know a number of working mothers who have taken 3 month's maternity because that is all they could afford, so I think it would be reasonable to expect that of the OP).

CloudsAndTrees Wed 09-Jan-13 18:29:38

I agree completely with AThing.

Home truths might hurt OP, but sometimes that's the problem with the truth. This situation is as much your making as his, even if you don't want to see it. He is being lazy and not looking for work, and you have been doing exactly the same thing, and what's worse is that you say you are going to continue doing it for the next 4/5 years! You really aren't much better than he is.

wewereherefirst Wed 09-Jan-13 18:19:35

Athing has it spot on. OP, you should have got yourself a job, not lived off savings. You should have and still be looking for work. I worked from 5 months pregnant to the day before my due date because we needed the money.

It's not rocket science is it?

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