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Is my husband controlling...?

(137 Posts)
redrighthand Sat 01-Sep-12 09:08:26

DH is 16 years older than me and recently I've started thinking some of his behaviour is controlling. It's hard to put a finger on it so I will write probably a very garbled account of some examples.

If I have to go away with work (I'm in the forces so unavoidable but only two/three times a year), he's convinced I will cheat on him. To the point where I sometimes have to drive a 150mile round trip every day so I can stay at home whilst on a course to convince him that I'm not staying away so I can meet people.
If I make plans (I'm away now and have been planning for when I get back) he says oh you have a lot planned already I was hoping to spend some time with you. I will say well can we plan something then so I have something to look forward to he says "oh well if you ever get back we will think about it then" and when my time away (four months so far) was extended by a week because there are no flights, somehow he makes me feel as though this is my fault when clearly I can do nothing about it.
A while ago I was invited to a leaving do and I mentioned it to him and he went mad, before I could even tell him that we were both invited and so I had to cancel my spot which was embarrassing but not worth the hassle to go home to him after it if I had gone.
He won't let me have a Facebook account (I don't really want one but that's not the point) and recently he wrote to me saying that he doesn't think things will ever be the same when I get back as he will always wonder whether something has happened since I have been away.

I have never cheated on him in any way, I have no desire to meet anyone else and even if I did I wouldn't have the fucking time because of the job that I do, there really is no reason for him to think this of me. I was doing the job I do now when we met so he knew what he was letting himself in for and he is ex forces so he should understand the issues...

We've only been married for two years but this is making me feel so pessimistic about the future, it's like he thinks I am totally irresistible to every man in the world and therefore I will cheat on him (like an Othello complex...?) when the reality is very different and I rarely see any of my friends because he hates me spending time away.

I love him with all my heart but it's like this is taking the shine off things. Sorry for rambling.

amverytired Sat 01-Sep-12 09:10:55

yes of course it's controlling - you have just got used to it. (frog and boiling water analogy).

IslaValargeone Sat 01-Sep-12 09:11:35

Yes is the short answer.

BabylonPI Sat 01-Sep-12 09:14:07

Yes. You mention not being allowed to do things, evens Facebook account.

He's your husband not your owner, and if he thinks he can "allow" you to do/have things or not - then yes, he is controlling sad

whyme2 Sat 01-Sep-12 09:14:29

Certainly sounds a miserable relationship and quite controlling. Especially the part where you have to do all the unnecessary travelling so he feels ok.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 01-Sep-12 09:15:39

He sounds both intensely paranoid and controlling. Controlling behaviours like he displays are abusive behaviours. All the behaviours you have posted re him are all abusive/red flags.

What do you know about his family background, what do you know about his childhood?.

I would read "Why does he do that?" written by Lundy Bancroft. This will give you more insight into controlling men and how and why they act the ways they do.

You cannot fix anyone like this so I would not even try. You can only help your own self here. At least thankfully there are no children to consider here, do not bring children into this.

He will kill any remaining love you have for him as well as emotionally destroy you in the process.

puds11 Sat 01-Sep-12 09:18:53

He is controlling. And they don't change. Personally i would leave, but obviously things aren't always that simple.

BabylonPI Sat 01-Sep-12 09:19:21

Actually the more I read and re-read - you drive 150 miles round trip per DAY just to appease his paranoia??? shock

It sounds like he has "conditioned" you to feel like this is normal behaviour - yet you've only been married 2 years?

May I be the first to suggest you should leave the bastard? In all seriousness, unless you put a stop to his controlling behaviour now, it will only get worse sad

And 5 or 10 years from now, do you want to only be leaving the house to go food shopping to cook his dinner?

Sounds exaggerated I know, but it happenssad

How old are you OP? any DCs?

dequoisagitil Sat 01-Sep-12 09:23:27

Yes he is. He makes life so uncomfortable for you that you stop doing things and he's decided he won't trust you when you come home ever again because you've been away.

He needs to own his problem and deal with it with counselling/therapy/whatever and stop trying to limit & control you. And you need to stop giving way for a quiet life.

But I doubt very much he will see that he has a problem - it's probably 'all your fault' and if you would just 'x,y, z' or give up your career, he would magically trust you and you could be happy. But that's not true. It would just get worse.

redrighthand Sat 01-Sep-12 09:24:38

I'm 30, no DCs. He has three from previous marriage sad

It's so hard, when he's not like this he's truly wonderful, I have a few tears now but am in an eight man tent as it's lunchtime so I don't want to blub. This is heartbreaking.

dequoisagitil Sat 01-Sep-12 09:24:42

Yes, and the driving 150 mile round-trips is insane. Don't colleagues/people around you think it's weird?

IslaValargeone Sat 01-Sep-12 09:26:26

Babylon is absolutely right with regard to the situation only getting worse.
He needs to deal with stuff or you need to get out, and don't whatever you do get pregnant.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 01-Sep-12 09:28:19

"It's so hard, when he's not like this he's truly wonderful, I have a few tears now but am in an eight man tent as it's lunchtime so I don't want to blub. This is heartbreaking!.

It is heartbreaking but you have a choice to make still re this man.

Are you actually in the UK, you mention its being lunchtime?.

My guess is as well is that when he is not being controlling he is not totally wonderful either. Has he talked at all about his ex-wife, if so what has he said?. Does he see his children?.

Downandoutnumbered Sat 01-Sep-12 09:28:55

A man who behaves like this is not wonderful.

redrighthand Sat 01-Sep-12 09:30:37

No chance of getting pregnant. Yes people think it's strange but I usually find an excuse like friends staying over or needing to get home for the dog.

I don't know how to approach it with him, I feel like the bottom has just fallen out of my life and there isn't much of a support network here.

Downandoutnumbered Sat 01-Sep-12 09:31:41

You don't need to "approach" anything with him now, you can just focus on the job that you're there to do. When you get home will you have real life support?

dequoisagitil Sat 01-Sep-12 09:33:04

So he's making a liar of you to cover up his behaviour.

It is not right, OP, what is happening in your relationship, it's not right.

zookeeper Sat 01-Sep-12 09:34:26

You need to challenge your love for him; this is not a healthy relationship.

There is a domestic abuse thread in relationships somewhere - if you start reading that hopefully you will begin to see and understand why you tolerate this abuse.

redrighthand Sat 01-Sep-12 09:34:52

More support at home yes. It's really hard out here not to analyse things though, there are periods of frenetic activity and then nothing for a day and it's easy to read back through his letters, for every three that are lovely there is one that makes my heart sink because he mentions his mistrust or a negative comment about my being away.

SirBoobAlot Sat 01-Sep-12 09:40:40

Yes he's very controlling, and frankly a bit of a prick.

You deserve better than that, love.

QueenCadbury Sat 01-Sep-12 09:42:14

He is controlling but you already know that really otherwise you wouldn't have posted on here. The question is what are you going to do about it? One of the hardest things is actually admitting that there is a problem which you have done so that's great. I don't think that he is likely to change his behaviour and as others have said its likely to get worse. It will get to the point that you become totally dependent upon him as for a quiet life you will stop seeing friends/going out so that you don't get hassled about having an affair etc. you are already doing that by driving 150miles a day. He is insecure, jealous and paranoid and it will get to the point that even if out with him you be accused of looking at someone and fancying them or even fancying the postman/man that comes to read the gas meter. Sounds extreme but been there, done that.

It's not easy as you're married but I really do think you need to set yourself free and leave him. Hugs x

Jemma1111 Sat 01-Sep-12 09:43:58

If you stay with him then your self esteem will plummet further and further until you don't know who you are anymore.

Set yourself free from this control freak and live your life !

PrimaBallerina Sat 01-Sep-12 09:58:37

If you love him it's worth having this out with him before you think about leaving. Make it clear that his behaviour is driving you away and will result in you splitting up. People behave badly because they are allowed to sometimes and just need a serious wake up call.

You have never cheated. He can't justify his current behaviour in the slightest.

redrighthand Sat 01-Sep-12 10:29:54

I can't do anything from here so I will have to sit on my hands for another two months. I'm scared though that if I confront him he will think I'm doing it because I have cheated on him. to be perfectly frank I was a bit of a good time girl before I met him but since we first got together absolutely faithful. I'm kicking myself because even at the beginning he would check my mobile and fly off the handle if I talked to other men.

The thing is I don't want to talk myself out of this relationship, I really want to try to make it work but the jealousy drowns you in the end.

SquishyCinnamonSwirls Sat 01-Sep-12 10:35:38

Has he been unfaithful before? Not just in your relationship but before that?
Ime people tend to worry most about behaviour that they themselves have exhibited.

He sounds very controlling and manipulative. I'd be using your remaining time away to decide on what future you would like most for yourself. Life is really far too short to be unhappy, and you're the only person that can change that.

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