AIBU to “insist”
on communicating with my wife?
Times are stressful at the moment. Sprog 1, 3.5yo & sprog 2 1yo. My wife & I are always arguing. Any topic is fair game from what to watch on TV through to Money, shopping, weather etc etc.
My Wife has found a new coping strategy – its called “Just ignore him”, state your feelings & walk away. Instead of arguing, ignore him and spend your time productively browsing the web or playing computer games. This irritates me, resolves nothing and has been going on for months.
We have blazing rows and either....
1. I follow her around the house and attempt to communicate – I'm then accused of being a stalker.
2. We ignore & avoid each other – about a week later she pretends that everything is ok and nothing happened.
I'm working away from home during the week for the next couple of months. I got home on Thursday night about 9pm and tried to engage her in non controversial casual conversation, e.g. check out this funny clip of a toddler on FB. She tried to ignore me and then had a massive go at me for wasting her time and went to bed.
I have suggested “Marriage Guidance” but this was poo poohed as she felt that last time the councillor sided with me. I arranged a course of sessions with a different organisation, and hence different counsellor, but she still refused to go. She then suggested that I attend on my own.
a. I can't see how the marriage is going to survive/progress if we can't communicate.
b. If we didn't have kids then i'd gladly walk/run right now but we do so I will not.
c. I/we need to find a way forward
I ignore people who want to argue too. Life's too short.
Sounds like she just needs some space.
Do you both want to make it work?
Look on amazon for some books on communicating in marriages.
Have you asked her what she wants. E.g. Stay together or split up?
Do you think she's as unhappy as you? Do you want to be together?
Is there a clue in your post that you are difficult to cope with?
My Wife has found a new coping strategy..
Sounds like an awful way to live OP.
Do you know whether she wants to stay together or split up?
She is probably feeling furious with you for being away. I remember when my DC were little and DH was working away. We argued all the time, because I was resentful that he wasn't around to help and resentful of his child free time and real grown up life. Very unreasonable of course, because he had to work. But I felt abandoned.
I don't know what to suggest sorry. It's a tough time. Maybe make sure she has some practical support and a break. Maybe just leave the talking for a bit and try a few actions?
If you work away a lot and she's doing all the child care, she's prob desperate for a break from it. Stop initiating conversation and look after your kids while she has a break.
Talk to her after you've done 10 hours straight.
See if that works better.
Your wife has found a "new coping strategy", what was her old coping strategy?
Firstly, you're great to be concerned.
Secondly, it all sounds quite operational (2 young children/working) which is a position a lot of us are in, very limited 'couple' time.
Thirdly, I also ignore rather than argue, I'd worry our DS would be woken up then hear us shouting at each other. Probably not very mature admittedly.
Best of luck.
It sounds as if your wife has either checked out if your marriage, or is possibly suffering from depression (cautious uninformed Internet diagnosis!) or some other issue and is therefore unable to engage.
Unfortunately as a man on MN you'll get a lot of digs, but it sounds as if you've been proactive in engaging counselling etc which is good. If your wife won't engage then your marriage won't work. What do your friends/family think - has she checked out emotionally or could there be an explanation for her behaviour? Should she see her GP?
In the long term if it's not working, remember that your kids are better off with two parents who are happy apart than two parents miserable together
And agree with PP re childcare, exhaustion etc - have you addressed these issues to give yr DWA a break?
She ignores you for a week?
I couldn't deal with that.
To answer your AIBU - yes you are, following someone around the house insisting they join in an argument with you is unreasonable. You can't force someone to communicate.
If you are not happy in your marriage and you would not be unreasonable to leave.
Although as a first step I'd try sitting down and asking your wife if she wants to split up and if she doesn't want to then what steps she thinks you both need to take to avoid that.
Time for the extended cold shoulder treatment. Cut her off completely for a while, it will give you some space from hurtfulness and crap - and that is what it is tbh. Treating you like you're a "stalker" for trying to have and maintain a relationship in the face of being ignored is abusive, manipulative and cruel, so turn your back entirely for as long as it takes for her to come to you. If she doesn't, well take a message from that, too.
Instead of arguing how about you give her hug and tell her how much you love her, miss her and what a wonderful job she's doing with your children?
Actually OP I strongly suggest that you do attend the counselling sessions on your own. You may be surprised at how helpful these sessions can be on an individual basis.
Sorry to say it doesn't sound as though either of you are happy and despite other posters saying to just leave your wife alone, it seems clear to me that your wife has no interest in talking to you, even after you haven't seen each other due to your work travels. I really hate to come to extreme conclusions but it does sound rather like she isn't interested in making your relationship work right now and is being passive aggressive - leaving it to you to make all the hard conclusions/decisions. Perhaps take some time to write down how you feel about your situation, what you think your relationship issues are and what you'd like your relationship to become, send all this to your wife in an email so that she can read it on her own (as she appears to dislike direct communication) and ask questions in your email, how is she feeling? What's bothering her, what does she want etc... Refer to things she has told you (before walking off and thus preventing you from responding) and respond to them in the email. I hope you both can work this out.
You have a 3.5 yr old and a 1 yr old? You do realise that she can't go to the toilet for a pee in peace and won't be able to for years? To be followed around the house by a man asking 'why' constantly would push me over the edge.
Let her have a sleep in, write stuff down instead of having to 'talk'. She probably needs a rest.
It sounds awful. Can you try just stepping right back and being as mellow as possible for a good few weeks to try and take away some of the tension.
Assuming you want to try and make things work...
Just be polite and pleasant and don't ask anything of her. Try and be nice to her even if you don't feel like it and even if it's not being reciprocated. Maybe after a while you might be able to talk again. This could take a long time. Also, make sure you are doing your share of the housework and looking after the kids.
Whatever you do you must stop shouting or arguing. Following her around after an argument sounds like a bad idea.
What about some counselling on your own. You would have time to fully explain everything and the councillor would be able to guide you on what you can do to diffuse the situation.
Are you able to afford any extra help around the house? What about going out? Could you get a babysitter and go out and watch a film ( a film is good as you don't have to talk too much) keep it short and simple.
Presumably you got on well enough to get married and have kids - hopefully you can get back what you had. Having little kids is hard work and tests many marriages.
Btw - I don't know how this thread will go but male posters can get a hard time. Mumsnet isn't always supportive of men.
My Wife has found a new coping strategy – its called “Just ignore him”, state your feelings & walk away. Instead of arguing, ignore him
We have blazing rows..
Which is it? She walks away instead of arguing or you have blazing rows.
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