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Or is this a form of control

(125 Posts)
Sandbrook Sat 18-Nov-17 21:51:54

Lost my temper with DH this evening. Left the house for a walk to calm down, was a few hours ago but I'm still stewing over this and unable to understand.

Whenever I suggest a day out, taking kids somewhere, time together, a meal, cinema anything, his first response is no. Second response why?
He never suggests days out anywhere to anything.
But... and here's the confusing bit. He will then a few hours or a day later say, fine then we'll go. Always.
I suggested over dinner we take kids to a Christmas parade tomorrow. He says no, then why. He says I don't have to always take the kids places. Fine. I get that I like to keep them/me busy and try new experiences, make memories. And I love Christmas so like getting into the mood early. So I suggest then we go by bus as rural living means kids don't get to travel to city by bus that often.
Again the answer is no. Why I ask? Fun for kids, no parking hassles. He just said he hates buses, we'll drive.
I said he can drive and we'll meet him there. So he got annoyed asking why, why do we have to get bus even after I explained kids enjoy it, why not?
I lost my temper so left house for a walk but hours later I'm still annoyed.

This happens with everything I try to organise. Why...no...why...no.
Then a few hours later or the next day, he'll say ok we'll go. So all that bad feeling for nothing.
I feel like I need his approval for any decision I make about days out.

Previous time before tonight was during the week on way back from visiting family. I suggested we stop for food on way home. He said no. I'm busy thinking about what's in fridge to make when we get in and he pulls into restaurant car park and said, well you wanted to eat didn't you?

Is this slow form of torture a kind of control or am I reading too much into it. While I was walking this evening my chest was pounding and felt tight because of the tension this simple conversation caused. It's slowly driving me insane.
If IABU, can you suggest ways we don't end up arguing over a simple family day out?
Thanks

Justmuddlingalong Sat 18-Nov-17 21:55:32

Stop inviting him on outings. You go with the kids. And yes, it does sound like a control thing. If you don't give him the opportunity, he can't control you.

Justbookedasummmerholiday Sat 18-Nov-17 21:56:05

He doesn't want you to have any control of your own life.
He doesn't want you to feel you have made any decisions for yourself.
He doesn't value your opinions or respect you imo.

Raver84 Sat 18-Nov-17 21:59:49

Oh he sounds very difficult. Havr you told him he's like this perhaps he dosnt realise how annoying it actually is. Maybe his first response is "no" when what he shpuld say is 'let's have a think about it". On the other hand if I suggested gettibg the bus for fun my oh would just not do it he would want to drive to, if I want to take kids on the bus I do that alone as he hates it. Busses are pretty crap when your over around 9 years old. Could you compromise between you so perhaps you suggest a day out and he does what he chooses the next week?

Mishappening Sat 18-Nov-17 22:01:51

Just say..."Tomorrow I am taking the children to such and such and doing this and that - it will be such fun." Leave him to stew.

Sandbrook Sat 18-Nov-17 22:03:48

Thanks for the responses.
Those are the answers I was afraid of which is more than likely why I have not asked the question before.
Talking to him about that is not something that has yielded any results in the past.

I will be taking the kids out alone from now on. I can't keep having the same conversations over and over again

DownTownAbbey Sat 18-Nov-17 22:04:42

Unless he's particularly slow witted and needs extra time to process your very normal and reasonable suggestions then he must enjoy the sense of power he gets from these situations. Personally I'd stop asking him and just do stuff whilst planning a life away from the grouch.

Sandbrook Sat 18-Nov-17 22:06:35

Raver84, he never organises or suggests any days out. Ever.

OldWitch00 Sat 18-Nov-17 22:07:12

Can’t you discuss things a few days in advance so he can mull it over?
You know conversation...”next weekend I’d like to do XYZ, do you have something planned? Would you like to join us?”

RoseNarene Sat 18-Nov-17 22:08:40

My husband used to do that.

We're divorced now.

user1494670108 Sat 18-Nov-17 22:09:36

My dd who is only 12 can be a bit like this, she likes to have a plan in her head of what she’s doing and will instinctively react negatively to changes to that plan even when the changes are not bad or are caused by her.
I do discuss it with her and we’re both getting better at handling it.
I know this may not help but could you talk to him calmly about the fact that this is how he reacts and the poor example it sets to your children?

thatcatpidgeon Sat 18-Nov-17 22:10:33

Just do it without him. Make sure you 'invite' him - e.g 'we're off to the Christmas market tomorrow, do you fancy it?'. I do loads of stuff with the kids without DH, also can't bear in each other's pocket relationships so possibly not the best person to judge.

Re the control - it sounds like you are asking his permission for everything, which then forces him to take control/be the person who makes the choice.

Just try telling him the plan not asking him then you have control of your life and choices and he can choose to come along for the ride (both literally and figuratively)!

Sandbrook Sat 18-Nov-17 22:10:52

Tried that too OldWitch, it seems it doesn't matter how much notice given, the answer is always the same.

Grouch is correct Downtown sad

Calvinlookingforhobbs Sat 18-Nov-17 22:12:01

OP, it sound like he is very controlling. The fact that he does come round suggests that he knows your ideas are good ones but doesn’t want you to know. He is undermining you and not treating you like an adult.

Is this the relationship you want you DC to witness and potentially replicate? Could you talk to him?

Ohyesiam Sat 18-Nov-17 22:13:16

My soon is like this, and with him it's hating change, he has to get used to something before he days yes to it.
Different dynamic to a dh doing it
But i thought I'd throwit it in .
How fur he cope with new/ change?

Ohyesiam Sat 18-Nov-17 22:13:55

Fur? How does he cope with change?

FlashTheSloth Sat 18-Nov-17 22:16:31

Sounds like a control thing, he has to be the one to agree before it can be done. I would just plan what I wanted to do and tell him, without much notice, that you and kids are doing X, is he coming, if not you'll see him later.

From another point, I have aspergers and I hate having stuff sprung on me without having time to get my head around it. I can get really grumpy about any change and need to deal with it in my head before I feel ok about it. Having said that, it's always me in my house who thinks about days out. I don't think we would go anywhere on days out without me suggesting it, and even then I am not asking DH, because more often then not I won't actually get an actual answer, so I basically tell him what we are doing. I've tried asking his opinion and I just get "I don't know" to everything.

Justgivemesomepeace Sat 18-Nov-17 22:16:37

My dp does this about everything. Be it going places, buying something, decorating absolutely everything. He default setting is no. Then about an hour later after he's had time to process it he starts talking about it and decides it's a good idea. By then though the shinyness has worn off and it's spoilt. I don't think it's control with him though. He's ridiculously risk averse and his mind immediately goes everything that could go wrong and is so negative. I stopped suggesting places to go. I do now or we'd never do much. He does suggest stuff to do though. I decorate myself now when he's working away and he doesn't know till he gets back. I just buy what I want without asking now and he always likes it. It's so frustrating because I know if I tried to discuss it first it would be a row.

fairgame84 Sat 18-Nov-17 22:17:00

Does he suffer with anxiety?

Before I was medicated for anxiety I had it quite severe and would behave like your DH. 'No' was my automatic reply to days out then when I had processed it all and gone through all the pro's and con's I would often be able to talk myself round. It was an absolute need to be in control but it stemmed from severe anxiety and not because I'm an arsehole, although I can see why people would think I was an arsehole.

CorbynsBumFlannel Sat 18-Nov-17 22:17:35

I wouldn't say it's necessarily control. It could just be that he doesn't like family outings much but after thinking it over decides not to be a dick. Or that he's worried about money or eating out/days out were a rare treat to him growing up and he thinks it's extravagant. Loads of explanations. You willl know better than anyone on here if it's a control thing.

campion Sat 18-Nov-17 22:17:44

Sounds like he can't cope with being taken by surprise ie the change to what he expected was going to happen, and needs time to process things. It's probably partly habit and possibly partly his personality.

I don't see anything sinister in it even though it's very annoying from your point of view.

Have you tried discussing it with him when you aren't in the middle of a conflict? He might get it (he might not). Sounds a bit like an anxiety reaction even though he might not recognise it as such.

As for the days out suggestions...or lack - some people just have no imagination so you have to fill that gap yourself!

TheMamaYo Sat 18-Nov-17 22:18:05

I have a friend who does exactly the same! It took me a while to change my response to this. Now I just let him process it first before getting the real answer! He has Aspergers and a bit of social anxiety and struggles with sudden decisions.

Does your hubby knows how much frustration it causes you?

kindermog Sat 18-Nov-17 22:20:01

How is he when you do go on the day out? Is he negative or does he enjoy the experience and get involved?

If it’s the latter could you use that as a response to his automatic “no”? Point out to him that he enjoyed himself last time?

Sandbrook Sat 18-Nov-17 22:20:35

He's fine with change. Very matter of fact, if you need / want to do something, just do it. Can be described as cold. Has no problem organising nights/trips for himself with his hobby friends. But has never booked a holiday for example without my idea. Or if he does have an idea on an extremely rare occasion he never follows it through.
Like the idea was enough, the actions don't need to follow. It's the thought that counts he might suppose hmm

TroelsLovesSquinkies Sat 18-Nov-17 22:22:27

My Dh doesn't do well with change. I stopped asking and started telling him The kids and I are doing such and such on Saturday, do you want to come?
I got a grumble usually, then either hours or the next day he'd be all for it.
The food thing used to piss me off till I discovered that suggesting we stop and eat didn't work. But me saying I want to go to x restaurant now please I'm hungry. Or stop at so and so's on the way home worked better.

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