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friend ignores h, h blows a gasket at me - long, sorry

(64 Posts)
feelokaboutit Thu 15-Nov-12 11:54:13

Don't know how to think about this. My h and I have had lots of ups and downs in general, but over the last three/four years especially. We have gone through three long periods (the most recent has just finished) where he hasn't spoken to me at all (the longest time was for two months). All this means that I have (much more in the past) spoken to my friends about him quite a lot. We went to a few counselling sessions this year which we are no longer going to as he stopped coming after a huge blow up in one of them (which caused the last long period of silence). During the counselling it came to light that he is very bitter about my talking about him to other people - including my Aunt whom he knows. From my point of view, I was seeking support during times which were very difficult for me, and really talking about the whole of my relationship as it were - not just HIM - though he is an integral part of things!!

This is to set the context. I have a friend who comes over occasionally as her daughter is very good friends with mine. There was one occasion a few months back where she did pretty much ignore him when he came home and sat with her back turned to him, talking only to me. Now I don't know why she did this. H brought this up in counselling and said it was because I had badmouthed him to her. It is true that I had told her about my "relationship" and the hard things within it. I don't know if this is why she behaved in this way. I don't know her all that well really and it could be that she herself felt bad vibes from h (who can be very standoffish and sit in the corner of the living room, working on his laptop, ignoring everyone).

Since that occasion I think she might have come over once for a cup of tea and once briefly to pick up her daughter. Both times I was relieved that h wasn't around. Yesterday, thinking that things might be ok as we are getting on a little better since last long period of silence, I invited my friend over with another friend of ours. I told h who said he hoped they were going to "behave" to which I said I hoped he was going to. Not a good start.

H was out when they first came over so I thought he would be out all afternoon. I then went to get my son from guitar club leaving my other kids with my two friends at home, looking after their own kids and mine.

When I came back, h was also there, playing snooker in a room off the living room. My friends were sat at the table. No communication between both parties but I didn't know who had said hello to whom or not.

My friends and their children left. A while later h blew up saying he didn't want that "donkey" (my friend he dislikes) to ever come here again and that if I wanted to behave like that with her we could do it at her house. So she must have ignored him I take it. My other friend he said was "normal" because she must have greeted him when he came in. That if she (the "donkey") came here again he would say something. That she had ignored him again because of me. I said that this was not true (I haven't spoken to her about him for weeks and weeks at this stage), that I am not her. I also said that when his friend (A) came round and didn't seem able to make eye contact with me at all, I didn't go off on one. At this point h got angrier and called me "thick" and "dim", saying he hardly "A". I then said that maybe I don't know my friend either. Throughout his tirade he was effing and blinding. All in front of our three dc. I said I wouldn't not invite my friend here and that what he was saying sounded like a threat. He said it was. In short it was awful. All three kids were silent and watching. I then went upstairs upset and youngest dd folllowed and gave me a cuddle. When I came back down h was being super nice to kids. We haven't said a word to each other since then except for this morning when he was making himself a cup of tea and asked me if I wanted one.

I think my friend might be a bit upset as she was behaving a little strangely when she went home yesterday, and didn't answer a couple of texts I sent her (about non related things) later on. I am hoping to speak to her later on but don't really know how to bring up this whole thing without offending her.

During h's tirade yesterday where he called me thick and dim and shouted at me, I knew that really I cannot live with someone who thinks it's okay to talk to me like this, especially in front of the dc. Then I start to think about all the difficult things about being away from the dc some of the time if h and I separate sad.

H is a very closed off character who takes things very personally and is mistrustful of people in general. This is not the first time that he has expressed anger at being "ignored" in his own home. Yet he doesn't speak to my sister AT ALL when she comes over as they fell out more than two years ago. She was very upset about this at first but has got used to it. I can't get used to it though sad.

So I suppose my question is - is h right in feeling so aggrieved? Am I right to feel that really I cannot live with someone who calls me thick and dim in front of my kids??

pictish Thu 15-Nov-12 14:04:31

I think Phyllis has probably hit the nail on the head, I'm afraid.

ClippedPhoenix Thu 15-Nov-12 14:07:29

It's simple really isn't OP, if he was a good loving and kind partner you wouldn't need such support, you would be telling all how content you were.

feelokaboutit Thu 15-Nov-12 17:19:22

Thanks for your messages. I didn't say anything to my friend. I saw her today and she seemed ok and I thought better not to rock her boat as it were.

Will write more later as ds wants pc and now is really not a good time for me to be typing!

Kundry Thu 15-Nov-12 20:52:47

Honestly, if my DH didn't speak to me for 2 months, I'd assume we'd split up.

What redeeming qualities does yours have to make it worth spending the next 30 yrs with him?

feelokaboutit Thu 15-Nov-12 23:07:35

I phoned a solicitor today and just the enormity of what I was doing has totally exhausted me and now my legs are aching and I really need to go to bed! I am terrified of the whole divorce process. It is by all accounts a very difficult thing to go through and I don't know if I have the strength, support network or courage to do it.

In any case this particular solicitor spoke to me for about 4 minutes on the phone (I had been told they offered a 15 minute free conversation) and then offered me one hour face to face for £99 plus vat, so I think I should shop around for someone who does actually offer a free half hour.

It is absolutely certain that I couldn't live with h while going through a divorce process. If/when we separate, I have to register an interest on the family home. Cannot imagine being around while he received a letter telling him this. He is once divorced already and very bitter about his ex wife getting the whole family home (he got a smaller business property with flat on top). In any case I do not want the whole house, but my ideal scenario is one where the house is sold and the equity is split between us. However this is not h's ideal scenario at all. He will say that he has slogged for years to pay for things (which he has).....

However, I cannot leave without anything, so things like registering my interest in the property would have to be done. This then leaves me in the awful position of having to move out somewhere rented possibly taking the kids with me (of course they would still stay with their Dad in this time, I wouldn't be "hogging" them). I think the kids are unlikely to want to leave their warm, cosy, family home. H would never leave the house and nor would I expect him to, he is very attached to it, works really hard to pay the mortgage, and runs part of his business from it. The whole thing is just awful.

I do agree that maybe I should not have confided as much as I did in my friend. However this is the fourth year we have known each other now, and we did/do get on well, and it is difficult to have an authentic conversation with someone if you say you are "fine" when in fact things are difficult at home.

I suppose I should just make a plan and slowly plod my way through it. Find work (hope to work as a teaching assistant), sort things in the house I want to take, arrange where we would live.... Then when I am prepared, I might have more courage to start the whole divorce proceeding. H doesn't need to know anything until I feel well and truly ready to face the music. Wish I could just close my eyes and find myself having gone through all the horrible bits.

Not least is the impact on the children. I read an article on divorce by Nora Ephron today and her paragraph about divorce and children is poignant:

"I can't think of anything good about divorce as far as the children are concerned. You can't kid yourself about that, although many people do.
They say things like: 'It's better for children not to grow up with their parents in an unhappy marriage.'
But unless the parents are beating each other up, or abusing the children, kids are better off if their parents are together.
Children are much too young to shuttle between houses. They're too young to handle the idea that the two people they love most in the world don't love each other any more, if they ever did.
They're too young to understand that all the wishful thinking in the world won't bring their parents back together. And the newfangled rigmarole of joint custody doesn't do anything to ease the cold reality: in order to see one parent, the child must walk out on the other."


squeakytoy Thu 15-Nov-12 23:53:09

That last paragraph was written by someone who clearly doesnt have a bloody clue.. dont believe a word of it.

Honestly, your children are not too young to be affected by the atmosphere. Do you really think that they will not have realised that Daddy hasnt spoken to Mummy for two months?????

Children are very easily adaptable, and can quickly get used to staying at Daddys house, and Mummys house.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:00:34

No, Nora Ephron, who died this year, was twice divorced and three times married. The first time she got divorced she didn't have children, the second time she did.
In any case, I really don't want my kids to grow up thinking their mum has accepted being called "dim" and "thick" and internalizing whatever that means for their own future relationships, so it is possible that my relationship has gone beyond what most people would consider acceptable.
It is very tempting to keep on hoping that things will improve between h and I however.

Lovingfreedom Fri 16-Nov-12 00:06:03

I'm fuming...that Nora Ephron is talking rubbish. Why not ask real people on MN who have done it successfully instead of listening to that smug, reactionary idiot. I've only been separated a year. Kids have good relationships with me and their dad. Most problems related to two homes ironed out by keeping a good calendar and doubling up as much as poss on clothes and essentials. Kids happy and secure. Performing well at school. Happy,popular and not obv effected by parental split. Couple of friends I know in similar set ups also have great, well adjusted and happy kids. We do almost 50:50. Kids not dragged away from either patent that way.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:07:22

I know that kids are adaptable. I just don't know how to get from the situation we are in now, to the one where we live in two separate homes and the kids have adapted. Plus cannot imagine being able to co-parent with someone whom I am sure will never speak to me again.

AnyFucker Fri 16-Nov-12 00:09:53

So, your friend had the courage to give your H a taste of his own medicine ?

Fucking good on her

Give that girl a medal grin

Any chance some of that kick-ass style could rub off on you ? It sounds (and has always sounded) like you would have a lot of support if you tell your inadequate fuck of a spouse to piss off out of your life. And still, you stay.

Nothing more to say, really.

One day (on your current course), your friends will disappear, and you will just have him. Is that a future you would look forward to ?

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:13:19

I don't think Nora Ephron was saying that kids can't adapt, I think she was saying that they have to make a big psychological shift which is probably not evident to the outside world.
I am not criticizing divorce or divorced people. I think divorce should be made easier and be more acceptable in society than it already is. It is absolutely normal for relationships to alter over time and for people to outgrow each other. I know that many people manage co-parenting well etc... and that children are resilient.
I am still very scared of what divorce might mean in my case however, and mainly because h is such a difficult person.

Lovingfreedom Fri 16-Nov-12 00:17:15

I just remembered who Ephron is....surprised at the quote....but anyway....

I don't talk to my ex or have a good relTionship with him or trust him. We do manage re kids tho. Only discuss times, places and arrangements plus essential health and education matters. And only by email and brief (me anyway).

You prob cant imagine it...but easier than you might think. You set up a schedule and stick to it.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:18:14

Hi AF, why would my friends disappear on my current course shock, what an awful thought! I do agree my friend has kick-ass style but she might maybe have thought of what knock on effect it might have on me (which is totally has as h and I are completely back to square one, in any case I am never going to forgive him for calling me dim and thick).
There are complex reasons for h's behaviour, some of which stem from his difficult teenage years with an alcoholic father. Due to past experiences he is extremely mistrustful of some people. I however cannot hope to "cure" him of his neuroses, or force him to go to psychotherapy, so yes, I do have to leave.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:18:34

it totally has

Lovingfreedom Fri 16-Nov-12 00:19:49

I don't interfere when kids are with him and I decide what happens when they are with me. You'll find a way of sorting it that suits you.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:23:05

Thx lovingfreedom, it is good to know that people manage with minimal contact. I just cannot seem to get myself from not very brave / passive person to someone who is totally in charge of her own life. I guess I thought things were on the up after h and I started talking again recently, and am now shocked to find we are back in this situation. The writing is totally on the wall, why is it that h will never be the one to set the ball rolling (re. separation) but will wait for me to do it, and then probably make my life very difficult as well angry.

Lovingfreedom Fri 16-Nov-12 00:23:58

I agree with AF re friends....they won't keep hanging around if yr dh is there acting weird and calling them donkeys. They'll poss come back to you once you given him the boot though.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:24:33

Are there ever any things that make you feel like interfering? This is my worry. Also that I might be very jealous of their time together.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:26:07

Well, she didn't hear him call her a donkey but she must definitely have got a vibe. Plus there is no way I could invite her over after what he said yesterday... that if she came over again he would tell her what he thought. I feel like an ostrich with its head in the sand.

AnyFucker Fri 16-Nov-12 00:28:45

I hope your friends won't disappear if you continue to complain about such an abusive man but don't ever leave him

I hope they don't get disgusted by your choice to play your part in modelling such a poor relationship example to your dc

I wouldn't disappear, but I would get sick of listening to you whinge but not change a thing. I would slowly start to limit my time at your house because of your husband and how he made me feel and make no apology for that.

This is what happens, love. Your H will isolate you. You will be left with just him, and that is exactly where he wants you.

You haven't even bothered to talk with your friend about what happened, you prefer to brush it under the carpet and hope she understands. Nora Ephron isn't your friend. Nor is the voice in your head that excuses your husband his abusive behaviour because he had a difficult childhood.

Your children are having a difficult childhood. That is within your control to change.

feelokaboutit Fri 16-Nov-12 00:35:01

Yes maybe I should talk to her. I am quite shocked at what a big part she is "unwittingly" playing in the unravelling of my life (though maybe she is just symbolic), and don't know if it is good for her to know this.

Charbon Fri 16-Nov-12 00:44:27

If I'd been your friend visiting your home with my children, I wouldn't want my kids exposed to someone like your husband, so in addition to friends avoiding your home, your own kids are possibly going to miss out on the joys of easy friendship in eachother's houses. All because you won't leave your husband.

Your poor children are being exposed to something terrible here. For goodness sake, act as soon as you can to get away from this ghastly man. Some damage has already been caused to your children; please take responsibility now so that it doesn't get any worse.

Lovingfreedom Fri 16-Nov-12 01:01:57

I enjoy it tbh. Like having a bit of time to myself and getting out more. I enjoy my time with the kids and always look forward to seeing them again when they come back to me on my days. They look forward to seeing each parent too. My ex sometimes tries to tell me what I should do, I ignore him. I just don't interfere with him. That's cos I want a clean break and proper separation but I kind of have to trust that he can make reasonable choices for himself when he has kids. It has been stressful at timed getting to this point but not as difficult as I think I expected. You will cope.

Lovingfreedom Fri 16-Nov-12 01:05:13

I'd guess yr husband wouldn't have so much access if hes not been that hands on with kids so far. Mine was sahp so that's why ended up almost half n half.

FatimaLovesBread Fri 16-Nov-12 02:05:56

You've said that your friend doesn't know you husband called her a donkey, but do you know that for sure. You said you were out when he returned home, could he have already said something to your friend.

I have read previous threads, not talking to your wife for 2 month is ridiculous. I'd have assumed we'd split up and moved out in that time

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