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To be annoyed that DH just tuned out from us all during the holidays?

(30 Posts)
ATadHackedOff Mon 05-Jan-15 11:46:12

I'm so cross, I actually feel on the verge of splitting up with him due to his behaviour.

He has had form in the past for, at times, just disengaging from family life and thinking he can do as he wants and that I will pick up all the slack regarding the children and the house. When he is in this mode it's hard to even get his attention to speak to him; he gets very focused on his phone or films, or the games console and just tunes out from us all. This maybe happens two or three times a year for a few days.

However, we have both been off work since the day before Christmas Eve, so two weeks, and he has been like it for the whole of the holidays, and I am totally pissed off about it.

It started on Christmas Eve really; we'd agreed that he would take the DCs out for a couple of hours so that I could finish wrapping presents and get other things sorted. On Christmas Eve itself he just sat around the house and each time I suggested that he took the DCs out he said he'd do it 'in a bit'. Of course, it eventually got too late, so he came up with the idea that he'd entertain them downstairs with a film whilst I shut myself away upstairs and did wrapping. Only he just stuck a film on and left them to it, hence our 5 year old kept wandering into our bedroom when I was wrapping!

On Christmas day DH was semi helpful, ie he loaded the dishwasher and did a bit of tidying, but he mainly just disengaged from us all and sat in front of the tv.

And he has done the same all holidays! Gradually over the fortnight he has stopped doing anything, and he has seemingly tuned out of speaking to us all if we speak to him. DS asked him 6 times yesterday for a drink and DH just sat there watching telly and I said to DH "DS has asked you for a drink", and even then DH tried to think of ways to avoid doing it, saying "you've only just had one" and "get a chair and take it to the fridge and get yourself some juice".

He has also not done any mealtimes for the kids, and not thought to feed them either. I've left things a couple of times to see if he gets them anything but he doesn't. Last night it was getting towards tea time and DH, who had been watching a film all afternoon, just carried on watching the film. He seemingly just switched off all holiday and gave no thought or consideration to anyone except himself.

The not listening thing has pissed me off so much too. So frustrating to speak to someone who just looks at you blankly then turns back to the the phone/film/x box game.

DH has gone back to work today; I am not back until tomorrow as I took today off as our DC are not back at school until tomorrow. He left very early and when I got up he'd left the house downstairs in a total fucking mess and left lights on everywhere for me to switch off! It's like having a bloody toddler!

AIBU to be pissed off with his behaviour and to be thinking of splitting up with him over it all?

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 05-Jan-15 11:49:32

Look at it the other way - what's the point of him in the first place? Does he look simple amazing sat there [like an ornament] or does he has a fantastic cock?

ScathingContempt Mon 05-Jan-15 11:51:33

Yanbu at all. Have you pointed this out to him?

Icimoi Mon 05-Jan-15 11:52:06

I take it you've tried talking to him about this? What does he say?

ATadHackedOff Mon 05-Jan-15 11:52:36

Yes I've called him on his behaviour several times but he didn't see the problem. Which then infuriated me even more.

YonicSleighdriver Mon 05-Jan-15 11:55:27


AmberNectarine Mon 05-Jan-15 11:56:25

YABU to have not told him to get off his arse and get on with dinner etc. My DH has a bit of this in him, but he works a 70-80 hr week so I let him get away with it a bit. When it starts to fuck me off, I tell him what needs doing and he does it. Yes, ideally he'd notice and be proactive without me telling him but nobody's perfect and he is brilliant at dealing with the kids (would never ignore a request for a drink/forget about dinner) and supports us in so many ways I can forgive him for needing to be told when a Hoover needs running around.

AnyFucker Mon 05-Jan-15 11:58:04

if he keeps doing it and you keep tolerating/smoothign it over then you will just get more of the same

does he even want to be a family man ?

florentina1 Mon 05-Jan-15 11:58:33

Use the Marie Kondo method. If it's neither use nor ornament .. Bin it.

MulledLairyFights Mon 05-Jan-15 12:10:11

Sounds like he's be happier left to his own devices. In his own home

ATadHackedOff Mon 05-Jan-15 12:12:30

Ambernectarine I did tell him to get off his arse and do things (such as take the kids out on Christmas Eve) but he'd just say he'd do it later, and then of course not do it!

I think he saw the time as a break from work and a time of doing nothing, whereas of course we all know that with kids it really isn't possible to have that.

SaucyMare Mon 05-Jan-15 12:15:17

you don't accept the answer "i will do it later" you respond "no do it now, your fucking phone isn't important get out NOW"

Mrscog Mon 05-Jan-15 12:31:14

Not acceptable at all. Both DH and I like to zone out with games/book/film but you can't really do that with children. Our holiday (of a similar length) has had stretches of turn taking to look after DS properly whilst the other chills, and then some time where we've all done stuff together. It's the only fair way of doing it.

You need to discuss it, does he realise the messages he's sending to your children?

Gawjushun Mon 05-Jan-15 12:41:48

Does he have depression or similar? Not making excuses for him being an arse, it's just that times like Xmas can be really hard when you have mental health issues, and tuning out is a coping device. I'm probably clutching at straws.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Mon 05-Jan-15 12:42:30

He wasn't thinking of how you might want a rest was he, or how he might spend the holiday fortnight getting close to his children. If he isn't ineterested in making his presence felt, it would make me wonder why he's playing at being the bachelor uncle or detached-from-reality couch potato.

He's had his 'me time' so if I were you I'd have a devices switched off time and a serious talk with him and set a time limit for change.

GertrudePerkins Mon 05-Jan-15 12:45:57

what Amber said really

both DH and I work, and so we do need a bit of proper downtime when we're on leave. But I have no qualms about chucking him a duster and telling him to get cracking, nor about switching the TV off and insisting that he join us doing a jigsaw or going to the park or whatver.

lottiegarbanzo Mon 05-Jan-15 12:52:48

When do you get your 'me time?'. Have you asked him his plans for facilitating this? You could tell him that since he took the entire Christmas holiday off from family life, you'll be doing the same thing at Easter, for two weeks, so he needs to start thinking about how he's going to entertain the children.

Ragwort Mon 05-Jan-15 12:59:53

Fortunately my DH positively loves being with his DS so I don't have quite the same situation but I make a point of saying 'I am going out today/this evening/whatever' - I plan something for myself and do it. Personally I think everyone at home drifting around is a bit pointless and I loathe 'family time' so we've always taken turns at being responsible for our DS and having free time. Obviously we do some things together. grin.

Everyone needs proper 'relaxation' time, but equally parents need to be responsible for their own children.

googoodolly Mon 05-Jan-15 13:04:25

I used to have this with DP. We have no DC but he does have a tendency to get absorbed into his own thing and doesn't really acknowledge everything else. I eventually got pretty pissed off and said to him that his partner and real life were more important than a screen, and that the screen would always be there, whereas if he spent his entire life staring at technology, the important things in life might not be there afterwards.

He's been a LOT better. Yes, he still plays video games and gets into movies, but only when everything else has been done first and he puts real-life first now. Maybe if your DH knew you were at breaking point he would snap to it a bit? If you went away for a week or long weekend, would he be able to cope with the house/DC's/school-run? Would that kick him into action a bit more?

CheeseBuster Mon 05-Jan-15 13:05:36

Does sound slightly like a depressive episode to me, the complete disengaging from real life. Don't understand why you didn't just go out one day and force him to deal with the children though?

PuppyMonkey Mon 05-Jan-15 13:12:11

I was also going to ask about any history of depression. Just with you saying it happens a few times a year, made me think it's not automatically a LTB situation?

AMumInScotland Mon 05-Jan-15 13:25:31

If it was me, I would leave the mess downstairs and challenge him when he gets in. Seriously sit him down and have a conversation - starting calmly but working up to as angry as you need to get to get through to him that he needs to sort his attitude out if he expects this relationship to continue much longer.

Part of me thinks you shouldn't have let him away with it, the other part thinks of course you shouldn't have to tell your partner to 'be a grownup' and take their share of the work through Christmas, and that if you have to nag then you've already lost the battle.

If he still refuses to see that 'doing nothing' isn't an option out here in the adult/parent world, then you do have to consider whether you want to live with someone who has so little respect for you and what you have to do to make a family actually function.

Littlef00t Mon 05-Jan-15 15:24:48

I'd try firstly to express to him how seriously you take his behaviour, that your relationship isn't equal and you feel undermined and offended.

Then I'd be specific and unrelenting about him taking more of an equal share.

DH, I've done xyz the last few days, it's your turn to look after the kids while I have a lie in this weekend. Please take them out the house, I don't expect you back til x time.

Miggsie Mon 05-Jan-15 15:30:16

Sounds like your DH sees housework and kids as something a woman does and he doesn't.
Hence he can't see a problem with you doing it all.

Unless he gets a sense of pulling his weight and actually engaging with his own children nothing will change.

You cans tart by doing a housework rota but if your DH actively refuses to engage (as he did over the holidays) then realistically you have no power to make him change his ways.
I can see why you considered splitting up when he doesn't even acknowledge what needs to be done. You may want to take drastic steps in stopping housework or certain household tasks but even then if he doesn't join in.

YonicSleighdriver Mon 05-Jan-15 15:55:49

agree with Little, except I would go out.

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