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Is he depressed, jekyll and hyde - or just an arse?!(93 Posts)
Apologies in advance if this is long.
Background: together since we were 19/20, married 20 years, 2 DCs 12 and 9. Both early 40s now. I work FT in a job I love, on a good salary. He has his own business which has been very up and down, and over the past 2-3 years more down than up. He works alone mainly.
He constantly puts me down. He resents my job; every argument we have seems to come back to my job "taking over". I do work often long hours, have to stay away the occasional night, sometimes catch up on stuff in the evening etc. But my salary is important as his income fluctuates. he is rude and abusive about my (female) boss, she is the "manc bitch" (she's not even from manchester, and he has met he about 4 or 5 times in 8 years). He constantly brings up the past - I'm far from proud of this, but I had a ONS not long after we married, and even now, nearly 20 years on, he still brings it up and basically blames me for all our problems. I thought we had moved on from that - afterwards I went through loads of shit with him (a lot of drunken behaviour, he broke my wrist, phoned prostitutes when pissed), but thought we had got over it, went onto have the kids etc. All was good until the last 3-4 years.
I am constantly accused of depriving him of sex. Depsite the fact I am "useless in bed", "just lie there", "never give me oral", he expects sex everytime we got to bed at the same time. The other night I was really tired and said no. He went into a complete childish sulk and proceeded to bad mouth me for the best part of 30 mins. This happens quite often and I end up giving in. Then he moans because I'm crap in bed.
He regularly bad mouths my parents which he knows winds me up. They are pretentious, ignorant and thick apparently. In the last few weeks I have been called an idiot, an imbecile and unclean.
Every evening he goes to the pub after work "for the company because you are so unsociable and don't talk to me". I just have nothing to say. He never asks me how I am, how my day was, if I talk about how I am feeling he immediately turns it around to him. He also says he goes to the pub because he spends all day "in the cell" - meaning his office, where he works alone, and gets company at the pub. He has 3-4 pints every evening, comes home about 7.30/8 - by which time the kids are dealt with and in bed - I've done homework / tea / bath / wind down time. Sometimes he comes home late after drinking much more, and that's awful.
I suspect some of this is down to stress because of the business, also my FIL died late last year after being diagnosed terminally ill early last year, so that has been stressful too, of course.
I don't help the situation - I do clam up when he's at home, I can't look him in the eye, I often will walk away if he starts on me, which winds him up even more. Or when he starts on one, I can't just sit there and take it and I argue back.
He can be nice. It's just the two personalities are hard to deal with - not knowing what sort of mood he will be in when he comes home, what his day has been like, whether anyone who owes the business has paid (if they haven't, it's hell), if I'm late its a nightmare etc. He does help with the kids if I am away early or finishing late, but often reluctantly.
This all sounds bad doesn't it?
Oh OP I do feel for you.
But I can tell you NOW, I trained as a child counsellor and children are far more damaged by angry words thrown between their parents regularly than living with just one parent who is positive and loving. Honestly, I cannot count the number of adults I know who have such a warped idea of what a relationship should be like and their role in it, just because all they saw growing up was negativity and emotional abuse like this. Right now, this is what you are teaching your children "normal" is.
Please please do yourself a favour and leave him, and make sure the children are protected when you do so. You can build a new and happy life. Do you have family and friends to support you?
I think in my mind I have made plans - or maybe had dreams. I need to understand the practicalities I suppose.
I am prepared to be completely adult, with no mud slinging, just pure sense - to make it easy for the DCs and maybe me too.
He's just come home. All nice and friendly.
Well if you really want to show him that you are strong, make plans now to leave this useless waste of oxygen asap. Womens Aid as well can help you, I would urge you to call them as well as your family and friends and make a new life for yourself and your children. They have also seen and heard way too much already in their young lives and staying with your H will only bring you all more misery.
He is not abusive because he is an only child; that is not the reason why at all and its far more complex than that. He has instead and undoubtedly learnt many damaging lessons as a child from his own parents about relationships. He likely saw one or both of his parents being violent towards each other. What do you know about his background?. Were you in a bad place yourself when you met?. He targetted you if that was the case and took full advantage of your kindness and naiveity.
Abusers can be nice sometimes and can also be very plausible to those in the outside world. They do nice/nasty very well. Its a continuous cycle however.
Walking on eggshells is to my mind another way of saying living in fear.
What do you get out of this relationship now?.
Honestly, what has kept you within this misery for so long?. Fear, shame, embarrassment?. Any perceived shame and embarrassment you may feel is totally misplaced.
Your marriage is broken and your children are already in a household that is broken through his actions. What do you want to teach them about relationships, surely not this pitiful excuse for a role model?.
May be a silly question, but do you still love him?
"I am prepared to be completely adult, with no mud slinging, just pure sense - to make it easy for the DCs and maybe me too".
Please be careful in your dealings with him. Ensure you secure the best legal advice possible and also the best solicitor you can afford.
He won't be adult about a separation at all; he will do everything in his power to keep you where you are and get revenge on you when he can for having the guts to leave him. Abusers like him do not let go of their victims easily and he won't likely let you go at all easily. You need a careful escape route out; this is where Womens Aid can also help you. Please do call them.
"He's just come home. All nice and friendly".
Typical behaviour for someone as abusive as he is. He's following the time honoured abusers charter.
I'm sorry Sc00by. He is a textbook abuser. And he's got you accustomed to blaming yourself ( I don't help the situation/ I goad him )..which is also textbook, and very sad.
There is no real point in telling him he is abusive: he will tell you he is fine, that you are the problem; that if you will just change everything will be OK. He is deluded, and has no insight into his behaviour.
It's good that you have employment, and are making some plans to free yourself. You have a head start.
Be warned though, that your reasonable, no mud-slinging, make it easy for the children approach - while perfectly correct - is not likely to be reciprocated. I'm just speaking from what I've witnessed.
I'm going to have to disappear for a bit now.....but I promise I am listening to everything you are all saying. The sad thing is I know you're right, but I'm weak. I need to deal with this.
I feel a sense of relief of having shared. I will also book another counsellor appointment (haven't been since Oct) to help me breathe.
Your H is an abusive arse. You are walking on egg shells and are unhappy. This is no way for you to live and no way for your children to model relationships on. Every paragraph of your OP made me feel heart broken for you. He forces you (emotionally) to have sex with him, he broke your wrist, he goes to the pub every day and when he stays late it is awful as you say. He bad mouths your parents and boss and essentially is trying to isolate you from family and work.
When was the last time you felt happy doing anything at all?
Have you thought about seeing a therapist just for you, to have someone neutral to talk through all these things with and see how you feel with that?
You deserve to be happy and you deserve a lot more than this.
Take care and see you later Sc00by. When you feel up to it, olgaga's blog is a good starting point re the practicalities surviveseparation.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/separation-and-divorce-advice-and-links.html
I dont think you are as weak as you think you are.
You are not coming across as very weak to me.
When you are away from him, my guess is you are not weak at all.
You havent failed btw.
His behaviour is not good however.
Scooby, you'll get there when youre ready.
Don't wait too long, go as soon as you can.
Whenever you need us, we'll be here, helping and encouraging you to be just that bit braver.
Stay safe, stay close to MN, and definitely yes to counselling.
Scooby, while you are thinking, have a look at the links at the top of this thread:
Morning everyone, and thank you for taking the time to reply.
I had an early night, this week has been a long work one, and also I feel mentally exhausted. Actually slept better than I have for a while (usually wide awake for 2-3 hours in the dead of night) - maybe the relief of actually 'talking' to wise MNers about this.
Every single post you have all written makes sense, and I can see what you are saying - it's not my fault (but it will be), I am unhappy (but so is he), I'm crap in bed (but he wants sex anyway), etc.
Attila, I have said several times I want out, but he just laughs at me and says we can't afford it, we would never sell the house, what about the children, etc.
Million - you're right, I'm not weak, I can be strong. If you could see me in work mode, you would think I am a different person. Confident, good at my job, dealing with a small team, client demands etc.
Cookies- when was I last happy? I'm happy when it's me and the kids, spending time with them, and I'm happy when I'm at work. Then I go home, which is fine when it's me and the the kids, but I do dread him coming home, as I don't know whether it's good mood or bad mood.
"Attila, I have said several times I want out, but he just laughs at me and says we can't afford it, we would never sell the house, what about the children, etc".
He will only realise that you are serious about leaving him when you actually decide to follow through on leaving him.
Telling him several times you want out just hands him even more power and control, such can only be issued once and if they are not followed through lose all their power. He knows you don't mean it because you have not followed through on leaving to date. This hesitation in leaving is also because you've become ground down and somewhat conditioned to accepting to date his ill treatment of you.
OP I'm sorry to read your posts. Ypur dh sounds dreadful.
I think it's fair to say that it's time for the marriage to end isn't it?
Life is short. You sound lovely - a woman with a career and children and the capacity to have a happy fulfilled life.
How many more years are you going to let slip by with a man who does nothing but make you feel sad?
Do you really, really understand that you deserve better?
You're only happy when he's not with you.
With a man as you describe, it'd be impossibe to feel any other way.
You do deserve SO much better, and so do your children.
Please make more plans, please put some verbs into your life and make it happen.
You are so lucky, many women in your position DON'T have the independance you have. You can do this.
What you can't do, is KEEP doing what you're doing.
What does he say about the marriage
Does he pretend that everything is ok?
I am lucky to have financial ability to make ends meet, I recognise that. I have lurked on MN enough to hear of awful stories where that is not an option. I can't carry on like this, it's wearing me down more and more. I actually look forward to Monday mornings, because I can go to work. Sad but true.
Right now, he has gone to the pub to watch the rugby. Doesn't know what time he might be back (even though the rugby will be done by what, 5pm?). Not to worry about dinner. I hate sundays, it often turns into what I call silly sunday, where he drinks too much and then is abusive because I'm fed up and miserable when he comes home.
He thinks everything will be ok, because the business is picking up slightly (but cashflow is shit), we have the house and the kids etc.
Might do some research
Does he think the business will be ok, or your marriage will be ok?
Or does he only really care about the business?
Realistically, is he at all willing to put effort into the marriage?
Good question, I'm not sure about whether he thinks that if he business is ok, then we will be ok. Money has been a big stress point over the past 2-3 years, because he has only been able to pay himself irregular small amounts. I earn good money, but it's not enough to cover all outgoings (especially when he spends at least £100 pw on beer and fags).
So we have at times been behind on the mortgage and other bills (all up to date now), but it has been a worry about putting diesel in the car / food on the table. His mum gave us some money when his dad died, which has helped clear some business debts and given us a cushion, but...it hasnt helped the stress still being there.
He says I need to make an effort too - talk to him more, not work all hours, spend more time as a family etc. I've just lost the will.
My ex grabbed my wrist once - funnily enough, it was also injured at the time.
I hardly slept, I had a long-standing cough which had started 6 months into our relationship (I thought it was due to damp in the flat). Years of abuse continued.
I eventually left. The cough almost instantly stopped, I started sleeping again, I'm so much happier I couldn't even quantify it.
It's sometimes hard to see at the time when you're in the middle of the storm, but believe me, things could be so much better for you OP, you must believe you deserve it, you really do.
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