to think my DH should get out more ...?(23 Posts)
Slight double meaning to this thread - I think that DH both physically spends too much time in the house, and also that his life is too family/house oriented.
DH works from home so doesn't need to leave the house for work. He meets up with old friends a couple of time a year, but other than that doesn't really have any friends - at least not ones he keeps in touch with beyond Facebook. His hobbies are things like watching films, so don't involve any social interaction or leaving the house ...
In the last 7 days, here's the times when he's left the house (and this is fairly typical)
Saturday - stayed at home
Sunday - took DS to sports club, hung around and watched, took him home
Monday - stayed at home
Tuesday - popped to shops for a few bits
Wednesday - stayed at home
Thursday - picked DS up from after school club
Friday -picked DD up from school
... that's it. Nothing social (he avoids talking to e.g. other parents though does chat to work colleagues on the phone) and very little time out of doors. (I generally persuade him to come out to the park or something with the family about every other week, but he mostly comes on sufferance and says he finds this dull). DH says he likes his life this way, but I am worried that he is getting depressed and is too focused on his family/home for his wellbeing (huge pressure on us to "amuse" him). I also feel stifled that I never get to be in the house on my own!! (yes, I realise this last one is "my" problem).
Dunno, his lifestyle just doesn't seem healthy ... what do others think?
Do you think that maybe he is just extremely introverted. I know people who are similar but not depressed. You said that he relies on you to amuse him, is he asking you to do that or do you feel pressured because you think he needs to be amused. Is he generally moody or how does he interact with the family?
If he's happy I'd leave him be
Go to a cafe with a magazine to get some time to yourself
My DP is like this but he does go to work every day. I think he needs to be more social as all his friendships died off years ago and he has no social life. He's happy though so I mostly let him get on with it. I think if they're happy leave them to it, at least you're not on here moaning about his constant partying etc!
I'm a home person apart from doing the school run and popping to the shops I don't really go out too much I can list the things I've done this year
Dinner with dh (so no other social interaction)
Family trip to park (as in extended family)
Family meals x3 (again extended family)
Trip to seaside x3
A night out at the dogs (with dh's old school mates)
Some people like to be home, we have plenty of things to do here, garden full of toys, house full of toys and education things.. Some want to be out all day and never home both are right just different people and different ideas.
When I say he needs to be amused, I mean he frequently gets in a mood when I do something like go and have a bath in the evening because he says it feels like I don't want to spend time with him. It's like he needs me round for company because he's not had any all day (which I understand, but as I've been round people all day, I want time on my own sometimes!).
We used to socialise in a big group of friends pre-children. Granted, even then he was as happy or happier just to sit at home and watch telly and not go out. But then, he worked in an office and did the things like going out for lunch occasionally or out for a drink after work.
If he is physically inside the house and not getting any exercise or exposure to sunlight most days, that's not very healthy for him long term. Would he consider getting (and walking) a dog? Or taking up some other kind of outdoor activity?
As far as social contact goes, it sounds like he is just quite a solitary type - I don't think you should force anyone to be sociable if they don't want to be. I'm assuming he has always tended to be this way, rather than it being a recent change which could be a sign of depression?
If he's happy, what does it matter? Lots of people like being at home and staying indoors - I know I'm one of them. I've always been a homebody and I'm happiest curled up on the sofa with the cats and my laptop or a book. Doesn't mean I'm depressed or miserable with my life, I just need a lot of time to myself and I don't enjoy being forced into social situations.
If you want time to yourself, go to another room when he's home, or go out to a café or the library to get some peace and quiet. Or you can just sit in the living room (or wherever) with him and do your own thing. DP and I do that for an hour or so most days. It's nice and there's no pressure to talk or socialise if we don't feel like it.
No, his lifestyle is not healthy - he gets no exercise whatsoever. That's not good. And yes, I can see that you'd have to take on the role of entertainer/outside interest, and while that's fine up to a point it must be knackering.
I have no idea what you can do about it, though.
I'm really shocked tbh.
When you say he stays at home do you mean he's literally inside the house?
Doesn't he get any exercise?
How is his mood?
I would have said if he's happy then leave him be. However as you said he gets moody if you're not in his company then that is odd.
It's one thing to be quiet and enjoy your own company, it's another if he's becoming too needy with you as a result.
You've just described my husband, OP!
I was getting worried about him but he seems perfectly happy and wasn't needing me for amusement, he was quite happy for me to go out and do my own thing.
When he was younger he was really into playing football and had made noises about needing to exercise and I helped him find a local group that play once or twice a week. I had to practically beg him to go the first few times but now he loves it and has found a second group to go to as well - and is now often out at football twice a week. It has really helped him get out and about. He still doesn't socialise all that much with them outside of training because he isn't a big drinker and they all get plastered but he's really pleased.
Does your DH have an old hobby or something you could encourage him to resurrect?!
Yes, when he's at home he literally stays in the house (well he might go and hang the washing outside or put DS's bike in/out the shed).
I think he's very moody - though he would say he is not - and he tends to blame me for it e.g. I can't sit quietly in the lounge with him and do my own thing as a poster suggested - he considers this to be ignoring him.
We go for a family cycle ride probably every 3 weeks or so but we're limited to a max of 8 miles (and generally do less) at 7 year old pace (all DD can manage). No exercise other than that really.
No, I don't think it sounds at all healthy. He actually sounds rather needy if he doesn't even like you having a bath or bit of time to yourself in the evening.
We have moved fairly recently and my DH is finding it hard to meet like minded people but he still gets out and about for various hobbies - fishing/cycling/hiking etc.
He also works a lot from home but when we are all in together we are often in different rooms - no way could we all sit in the same room for an evening !!
But, I really don't know what you can do about it if your DH doesn't actively want to get out and about. .
I hear you.
My husband can be a bit lazy socially and sometimes it can feel like an extra responsibility being the family's main connection to the outside world
He does seem to be in the house A LOT.
I can see why you think he needs to get out more. His life does sound kind of depressing (not you and the kids, just the never going outside thing).
Based on your other posts, I'd be inclined to agree with you that he perhaps needs a hobby or some kind of sport so that he's not relying on you for entertainment. It's not healthy to not let someone play a game/go on mumsnet/take a bath alone without getting stroppy or clingy.
I assume you've spoken to him about needing your own space? Maybe he needs something to do in the evenings - a musical instrument maybe, or some kind of model to build or even a video game? It's SO important in a relationship to have your own interests and identity and not to rely on someone else for entertainment all the time.
If he had something to do, he probably wouldn't feel "neglected" - it's just boredom and he either wants you to be bored as well or he wants to join in with whatever you're doing, which can be really frustrating.
I don't know what else to suggest, though
"I can't sit quietly in the lounge with him and do my own thing as a poster suggested - he considers this to be ignoring him."
OK, that would annoy the shit out of me.
Physically his lifestyle sounds unhealthy - he needs more fresh air and excercise.
Although going for walks / runs etc might still be a solitary activity, and I wonder if you'd still think there was something 'wrong' with that. It sounds like he's an introvert, which is not unhealthy, and not related to depression. Modern society worships the extrovert ideal and seems to have increasing problems dealing with introverts, and introverted behaviour seems to increasingly be looked at as weird and undesirable. although a significant portion of the population are introverted.
I also don't get people's need to be in a house on their own to have alone time, personally. My DH and I can spend hours in different rooms, or in the same room not talking, and it feels just as much like alone time than if he's not there, but that's personal taste. And if he won't even let you do that that's definitely a problem with him being needy / co-dependent. Although a major factor may just be that him being at home all day results in your chatty interactive moods being totally out of kilter with each other.
It's also not madly good for him to have no social circle or friends at all.
Quite apart from the fact it must be absolutely maddening for you.
I lived with my mum, who is disabled and house bound, for a long time, and whilst we got on really well I completely understand the strain of never getting the house to yourself. The thing I found quite difficult, and this really outs me as a petty and selfish person, was that I could never make a cup of tea without having to make one for someone else. Yep. It seems that I am a person who resents having to pour hot water over two teabags rather than one.
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