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Marriage

(30 Posts)
MrsSnoops Thu 01-Sep-11 11:48:23

I don't really know what I want from this post, but am hoping that people won't think I am a complete bitch. I think I just need to talk and try and clear my head.
I have been married to DH for 8 years, together for 10 and we have 2 DC 5 and 2.

I think we have a pretty good marriage. It is solid and we get on well and have similar values. I feel safe with him and we are committed to each other and the children. We do everything together as a family. DH rarely goes out and comes home from work and does the bath most nights (I am a SAHM).
He is a great bloke and I love him.

It is just sometimes....I don't know I feel bored and frustrated and irritated. There is no excitement. He doesn't challenge me hugely. He is probably not as intelligent as me and doesn't make me see the world in a different way.
I will watch something funny and show him and he won't get it, and I just sink a little inside.
I just sometimes feel so disappointed that there is a side of me that is not nurtured and brought out by him.

He is so content with life. Never raises issues. is just happy with me and the kids. And I am (it feels) always telling him things that are wrong and he tries to please me and then I get more frustrated because I don't know who he is. That doesn't make any sense does it?

Our sex life is not great and never has been. We are both quite shy in that area and it is often awkward. Again I feel irritated by him and he feels nervous as he doesn't know what my reaction will be sad.
When we have sex it is usually good and when we are having sex our relationship is better.

These feelings I am having of feeling disappointed are coming more frequently and it is worrying me.

I love him and want to feel satisfied with him, but at the moment I just want to scream.

Do all marriages have areas where you aren't matched brilliantly? Is this just how marriage is?
Honestly he has never raised an issue with me and I feel like a total bitch for not being happy.

I have booked a first session with a therapist for a couple of weeks time as I really need to try and come to peace with who he is and what we as a couple are.

NorksAkimbo Thu 01-Sep-11 12:07:53

Reading your post, I was very surprised at how much you sound like me in some parts! My DH and I are completely different, and he is intelligent in a much different way than I am, so often doesn't necessarily challenge me in ways that I 'need'.

HOWEVER, I have always known that about us, and I make a whole bunch of effort to get stimulated in the ways I need to, outside of our marriage. I went back to uni, worked for a bit, joined a book club and have good friends that I can chat to who share my interests. I am not out constantly, and spend a lot of time with him, but having some outside interests means that I have my own stuff from time to time (and he has time to himself, as well).

My DH and I are very committed, love each other a whole lot, and have a brilliant time together, but I don't expect him to share my interests, or be anyone else than who he is...which is great for both of us, actually...it means that the pressure is off him to entertain my needs all the time, and it's given me a sense that I've created a life outside of him, which is a really great thing for us both...we are not dependent on each other.

I can't comment on the sex bit...though we have dry periods now that we have DCs (5 and 3), it's all fine when we have the time and energy!

I don't feel like I'm explaining it well, but that's it in a nutshell really.

MrsSnoops Thu 01-Sep-11 12:14:02

Thank you so much for replying.

I have been a SAHM for 5 years now and I have found it hard.

I am starting to take some steps in to retraining and going back to study and I do think that will help.

I can totally understand what you mean about getting outside stimulation so he doesn't have to be everything, but at the same time I am worried about moving forward and outgrowing him....

I just don't feel deeply connected to him at the moment and that makes me sad.

greengirl87 Thu 01-Sep-11 12:17:15

i think in relationships you have to sacrifice some things for others. I doubt you are ever going to find the 'perfect' man, there is always going to be something about your partner that you dont particulary like/wish you could change. However, you have a loving husband who helps with the children etc... would you willing to swap that to an intellectually challenging husband who is fiery in bed, but doesnt help with the kids, or spend time with you or makes you feel loved?
I dont know if this is making to sense to you, but the long and short of it is this. You can find intellectual stimulation/conversation from outside of your marriage, you can both work together (have a frank disscusion) to improve your sex life, but you may not find the love and commitment that your husband has for you and your children somewhere else.
If this sounds like a bashing its not i am genuinly trying to help!
good luck

PrimaBallerina Thu 01-Sep-11 12:18:59

Are you sure it's him you're frustrated with? Being a sahm often means you're a bit strapped for adult company and stimulation, which you'd otherwise get at work. You could then be expecting your DH to totally meet your needs in this area, which is too much to expect from one person.

You say you love him so presumably you're glad you married him. A good, decent man who loves you is not easy to find - being a mnetter should have taught you that.

Concentrating on his (perceived) shortcomings is a BAD idea and will make things worse. Take every thought captive.

Have lots of sex with him, it does help with intimacy you're right. Think a lot about his good points and why you love him - being thankful makes a HUGE difference to how you see the world. Get out more by yourself and as a couple. No one person can or should be everything to you.

PrimaBallerina Thu 01-Sep-11 12:20:44

X post with everyone! Exactly! smile

HotBurrito1 Thu 01-Sep-11 12:31:01

He sounds a bit afraid to me, like he can't do right for fear of getting it wrong. Not that you're scary, but that maybe your family means so much to him? Does he feel he should stay at home as you are a SAHM? Maybe he does need a shove to get a social life. My husband never used to go out without me until I suggested a quiz night with our friends. He now goes out on his own and I do too.
Regarding the sex thing, if it's good when you do it how about suggesting you take turns to take the lead. Might encourage him to get proactive?

laurasarah Thu 01-Sep-11 12:42:00

This could be me!

I have everything I could ever want lovely husband, great kids, financial stability, good job etc but I'm just bored bored bored! I feel like a complete bitch at times but somehow I'm not getting what I need???? Our sex life is good when we do it dds 10 and 7 doesnt allow much time. Wish I kind of had more me time I suppose.

I'm babbling and probably not helping but I fear all marriages go through the same thing ups and downs highs and lows. I agree though I think we all need time to ourselves and away from husbands and dcs to let go and have a bit of fun.

MrsSnoops Thu 01-Sep-11 12:43:39

Thank you all.

I think this is what I needed to hear. That actually one person can not and should not be enough for everyone.

greengirl It really helps to think that I can get some things outside of my marriage but not love and commitment. You are right and that is a very good way of thinking of it.

prima I think there may be a level of frustration with my life in general. And yes with me. As I said I find being a SAHM HARD. I am envious of his job (but of course he would love to be at home more!)

What did you mean by take every thought captive?

hotburrito I think he is afraid. I had a very hard time after DC2 was born and had huge anxiety issues. He would come home straight from work every night and yes I think he feels that if I have been with the kids all day then he needs to come home and take over.

PrimaBallerina Thu 01-Sep-11 13:03:03

I mean don't let yourself daydream about where you think he falls short or it will become 'the truth' when it probably isn't. When you catch yourself doing it, stop and think of why he's the man you chose to marry. It's absolutely not about kidding yourself but opening your eyes to what you've got. Hope that makes sense.

MrsSnoops Thu 01-Sep-11 13:57:09

That does make sense thanks. A bit of CBT!

HotBurrito1 Thu 01-Sep-11 14:09:04

Mrs Snoops, why are you concerned about outgrowing him? If you both pursue interests outside of the home, surely he will develop too?

NorksAkimbo Thu 01-Sep-11 14:09:18

Creating a life for yourself outside of the marriage shouldn't mean you outgrow each other, it may actually help the conversation part a bit, because you always have different experiences to discuss, which is good.

It is very true what green girl said...love and committment and just a really good guy is a tough thing to find, and no one is perfect, nor are they going to have every single quality that matches yours!

But...it is hard when you don't feel deeply connected...maybe you could tell him that quite honestly, and find ways to re-connect?

MrsSnoops Thu 01-Sep-11 15:08:22

I suppose I worry about finding something better, but I know I don't want anyone else. I want him and I want our marriage to be strong and good.

I have talked to him and he says he feels quite bruised and doesn't feel he can do anything right. Poor bugger.

I need to sort myself out I think and the rest will come. I know I am putting a lot of pressure on him to make me happy which is ridiculous and unfair.

HotBurrito1 Thu 01-Sep-11 15:36:47

I think it would do your relationship good if you could focus on him a bit actually. What I'm getting so far is all about you, and he is fully focussed on you as well. I don't mean to sound harsh, but presuming your anxieties are not such an issue as they were you may need to rethink the dynamics of your relationship. The pattern you have may not be the right one for you both now. I.e you may no longer need him to put the kids to bed every night and you may now be happy for him to go out for an evening once a fortnight (while you go out on other occasions.)

Both getting out more together (and separately) can only liven things up for you both. Of course BOTH of you could potentially find someone better, but if you love each other it won't happen.

MrsSnoops Thu 01-Sep-11 15:55:46

I agree with that actually. I find it a bit suffocating and wonder if I push him a bit to try and get some kind of reaction..

He does complain about having no time to himself but does nothing to create that time. If the kids and I are away then he does things he enjoys, but won't put himself first when we are around.

I think I would find him more attractive if he wasn't so available.

I think a change in the dynamic would be good. He isn't from this country and doesn't have family here, so the kids and I are all he has. And yes, I think we have both got in to a habit of my needs coming first.

Proudnscary Thu 01-Sep-11 15:57:23

I say this without a hint of criticism or judgement or irony: get a job.

Fulfill yourself. You say he loves nothing more than being with you and and the kids, that you love him and that sex is great when you actually get down to it.

Don't chuck away your family unit...at least not until you have explored the idea that it's you that needs to stimultate yourself (intellectually that is!!).

And yes we all have parts of our marriage that are not just mismatched but a bit shit...I do, but I have a v happy and strong relationship despite this.

HotBurrito1 Thu 01-Sep-11 16:42:08

Mrs S I reckon you can relatively easily tweak this relationship into a much better one. All of the basics are good and solid. You could always approach it with him along the lines of 'I've seen a course/gig/class/pub-crawl I want to join' (delete as appropriate). It's then easy to say how great it is to go out and encourage him to do something for him. He may not want to suggest it for himself, but if you are doing it, he might find it easier. My husband is like that.
All the best with it, you have a lot going for you as a couple.

MrsSnoops Thu 01-Sep-11 16:42:27

I feel much better after this thread. Much more positive and feeling like this is a patch as opposed to their being something fundamentally wrong with our relationship.

I know I need to get a job. I know that. It is just something that feels insurmountable in my mind at the moment. I have no career to speak of and have been out of work for 5 years now. The thought terrifies me and then there is sorting out childcare.

I need to retrain and that is something that is top of my list at the moment. Working out what I want to do and then going about getting there.

Thanks everyone for your input and for not making me feel like a terrible person.

I think I will get a bottle of wine out tonight and try and talk to him about what we both need and how we can achieve that.

Proudnscary Thu 01-Sep-11 16:49:58

Good for you. You can salvage this. Of course you are shit scared after being a SAHM for a long time, but as we used to say in the 80s, feel the fear and do it anyway! Or something. I bet you any money that if you retrain in something that really fires you up and stimulates your brain, you will be itching to get that job. Just take that first step.

HotBurrito1 Thu 01-Sep-11 20:33:35

Glad you are taking the bull by the horns, so to speak.I think you are doing the right thing. Let us know how it goes.

Allboxedin Thu 01-Sep-11 21:02:15

I agree with what has been said. You definately seem to have good foundations there and I agree no marriage can be perfect in all areas, that is impossible as we are all only human. I hope you can get back into work and I think you will start enjoying things much more. You wouldn't want your DH to be the other side of the spectrum and be totally selfish and self centered, I would count your blessings OP. There are many others who long for that kind of relationship with their DP's. smile

ImperialBlether Thu 01-Sep-11 21:12:25

I was really worried, reading your OP, that there was a note of contempt in your voice. If you allow that space, then the marriage is over.

I agree with what everyone's said. It seems as though you would be a lot happier if you spent more time away from the house and with other adults. He sounds really sweet not wanting to arrange anything for himself, but I wonder whether he is too frightened of your reaction.

Be kind to him. You have a good marriage and the only things that are causing you problems can be resolved outside the home. Oh and have sex more often if that helps - remember that woman who wrote a book about having sex every day for a year?

MrsSnoops Fri 02-Sep-11 09:14:03

ImperialBlether - Oh crap. You have really hit on something with the contempt thing. I think that is what I am scared of. And the feeling irritated by him and feeling frustrated is because I feel like I am losing respect for him. Is it too late?

Last night when he came home I told him that I loved him and that I didn't want to be anywhere else and that if I had my time again I would marry him still (which is true).

We actually didn't really talk last night we just spent the evening together and had an evening without any emotion if you know what I mean?

We did end up talking this morning (why is it that chats always happen when you need to be elsewhere?!).

I won't go in to details, but he did admit that he does need more time for himself but that he is afraid of my reaction if he does, i.e. I will get annoyed because he is not with us. This is completely fair enough and I do that.
I have to change. I tell him that he should do more for himself and then get annoyed because that means I am with the children more and I need a break.

So: We have agreed that he has a couple of hours to himself on a Saturday morning. I will take the kids swimming or something, but that will give him some head space (what he craves more than anything is time to himself - it is how he recharges).
Once a month we go out as a couple. I will look in to a paid babysitter so that I don't have to ask family or friends and then it is our space. We take it in turns to choose something to do.
And there are a couple of things coming up that he would like to do.
He is also going to a drink after work tonight. Yay!

I think we both need to show in actions that we are prepared to change and we need to take baby steps to show that.

Oh - and ImperialBlether. I have read about that woman and the sex everyday thing before. I think it would work for us. More sex makes more sex in my book. And takes away the awkwardness. But as I said baby steps....

Sorry for long post, but it is really helping get my head a bit straighter.

HotBurrito1 Sat 03-Sep-11 10:07:40

You don't mention you having time out. Or are you already getting this?

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