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Jealousy or something more sinister?

(53 Posts)
ariane5 Tue 16-Apr-13 23:01:51

I was talking to a very good friend today and the subject got round to our dhs and she told me the following which really shocked me:

She does not allow her dh to have any female friends/spend time with any women unless they are related to him.
Her dh is not allowed to be on facebook.
He cannot watch any films/adverts if she thinks he might fancy the women in them.

Apparently somebody in his family is having a stag weekend soon and she has 'banned' him from going.

The worst bit of all was when she said she has a rule about hot drinks-if one of the office staff where he works offers/makes a drink he cannot take it off them in case their hands touch!! The drink HAS to be placed down and THEN he can pick it up!!!

It sounds funny but it has played on my mind all afternoon that this is not normal behaviour.In every other way she is really nice but I had no idea she was so jealous.

Its not my place to get involved but I wondered if this was more than just jealousy?

BabylonReturns Tue 16-Apr-13 23:03:55

That sounds totally mad and very unsustainable for him. I mean WTAF does she "allow" him to do?

LeaveTheBastid Tue 16-Apr-13 23:06:40

Awful. Actually feel quite sad after reading that. What the fuck is wrong with people?!

Poor man. Nothing quite like a controlling abusive relationship eh. She sounds like a gem!

mumscuppa Tue 16-Apr-13 23:07:12

Sounds like jealousy and its verging on paranoia . She couldn't really stop him from going on fb and the business about touching hands in the office , thats just so weird... Perhaps he has done something in the past and she is very wary.

ariane5 Tue 16-Apr-13 23:08:30

By the sound of it nothing.

I was really shocked as you wouldn't think she was like that at all. I am a bit nervous now of even bumping into them together now knowing how she feels about him and how jealous she is I would be terrified of even saying hello.

They seemed like a really happy couple but he can't be happy it sounds suffocating. I really couldn't believe what she was telling me.

YohedYoshoulderYonisandYotoes Tue 16-Apr-13 23:09:57

ahem..this is mental. Perhaps a 'lot of work needed' situation is happening, but don't make that excuse for them. It sounds like over-control and that is abuse.

ariane5 Tue 16-Apr-13 23:12:18

As far as I know (and I've known her for years) he has never cheated on her.

Whenever I have spent time with them they have seemed quite normal/happy. I can't begin to imagine what he goes through behind closed doors.
This has never been mentioned before it seemed like she wanted to just offload everything and I had no idea what to say as I was shocked.

reelingintheyears Tue 16-Apr-13 23:44:21

How does she know if he does what she wants at his work?

ImperialBlether Tue 16-Apr-13 23:44:50

She sounds unhinged. I'd be really tempted to pinch his bum next time I saw him. Sounds like she needs something to really focus on.

ImperialBlether Tue 16-Apr-13 23:45:20

It's a wonder, though, that he hasn't just told her to get lost. How can she control what he does at work, ffs?

pictish Tue 16-Apr-13 23:45:54

How on earth did all this come up?

CandlestickOlder Wed 17-Apr-13 00:02:30

Emotional abuse. He needs to leave her. If the sexes were reversed we'd all be telling her to LTB

badinage Wed 17-Apr-13 00:39:05

If she's a 'very good friend' I'd be surprised that this is the first you've heard of this sort of behaviour and if you've been in their company you would have surely seen some of it in action.

YellowTulips Wed 17-Apr-13 00:48:15

More worried about a partner (male or female) that would put up with shit like this.

A relationship is a partnership, not a dictatorship.

Quite frankly it sounds bloody sinister and your friend has some significant issues to resolve.

NatashaBee Wed 17-Apr-13 00:55:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

VelvetSpoon Wed 17-Apr-13 01:01:14

I know a couple of men who are 'not allowed' female friends. Their wives openly admit to regularly searching their phone, and giving the spanish inquisition treatment over any female numbers. One of them couldn't being home leaving cards from work because some of the girls signed with a 'x' or two and his wife wouldn't like it.

I do think this sort of controlling behaviour (and I have also seen it from men towards women) is really unhealthy, and in the long term risks huge damage to the relationship.

badinage Wed 17-Apr-13 01:27:46

I'll say again that it's highly unlikely that anyone would suddenly find all this out about a 'very good friend' because the behaviour described is so extreme that it would have been impossible to keep under wraps. I am of course assuming that 'very good friends' tend to see one another on a regular basis and that to make it to the 'very good' friend list, there is some longevity to this friendship.

Still, it's an opportunity to get women slating eachother and living up to the Mumsnet propaganda, isn't it?

Scepticism required, methinks.

NotTreadingGrapes Wed 17-Apr-13 06:59:01

And she believes he hasn't got a secret FB account does she?

Poor deluded wretch.

Badinage- I get what you say, but it does happen, if it's a poster telling us that a man does it, we are rightly horrified, but when it's a woman we don't believe it?

I live in Italy, and most of my Italian women friends are utterly horrified that not only do I encourage dp to have his mates, go and watch the footy, and it was me who set up his FB for him to connect again with old mates from the places he lived in/worked in in the past, but I sometimes make him go out to the pub so I can watch something Tom Cruisey grin on telly.

Then I watch all their slimy husbands in their shagwaggons on a Saturday afternoon ("just popping over to my mum's to change her a lightbulb dearheart") hmm

Op- if she has only just started doing this and only just told you, does she suspect he's playing away? What did you say to her when she told you all this?

ariane5 Wed 17-Apr-13 07:16:26

I really had no idea about this till now! I see her quite regularly but not as much as my dcs have been ill a lot recently.

The subject only came up as we were talking about holidays as my dh is going fishing/camping for a week and she was horrified I was allowing him to.
I thought I was controlling (have to keep dh bank card or he lends to family).

I have seen her with her dh quite a bit but they really seemed 'normal' and she's not spoken about this before.When I've occasionally been to her house and he's there he is v quiet but I thought it was shyness but apart from that I don't see a great deal of him.

I didn't get much chance to get a word in, she was talking and I was a bit shocked.
No idea how she polices the work 'drink rule'.

StillSeekingSpike Wed 17-Apr-13 07:19:46

Funny how people are so disbelieving- my vile ex was easily this controlling and nobody knew about it, even my closest best friends. I was too embarassed to tell anyone and he was obsessed with seeeming the 'good guy'.

Sparklymommy Wed 17-Apr-13 07:25:32

This lady has issues! There is no other way to put it. Perhaps, if she is a really good friend, you could try talking to her about it but try not to sound judgemental. Tell her that you feel she could be making a mistake because if you suffocate someone like that then eventually they will leave, and you'd hate that as they make such a lovely couple. Ask her why she feels she has to be like that. Maybe she has been treated badly in the past or her dp has cheated on her before.

ariane5 Wed 17-Apr-13 07:30:05

I have known her for years but have been so preoccupied with dcs being unwell that even if something had been said/done previously I might not have noticed.

I just was surprised as it all came out and she obviously wanted to tell somebody. Maybe I should have told her how wrong it was but I wasn't expecting it so had no idea what to say.Now I'm worried by not saying a thing she will assume her behaviour is 'normal'.

I feel so sorry for her dh I have no idea how he must feel.

badinage Wed 17-Apr-13 12:17:17

Funny how people are so disbelieving- my vile ex was easily this controlling and nobody knew about it, even my closest best friends. I was too embarassed to tell anyone and he was obsessed with seeeming the 'good guy'.

Exactly.

Abusive and controlling men don't usually brag about it to their mates. Especially their closest ones. They keep the behaviour under wraps because that isolates their victims even further.

And because they'd expect a really close mate to say something about the behaviour, which is abnormal and worrying.

If a really close friend who I'd known for years came out with this, then my first thought would be that it's a cry for help. Because I can't imagine a friend of mine having longstanding views or behaviour like this and not knowing about it or not noticing something - and therefore she would never have been someone who even made it to the 'mates' list let alone the 'very good friend' category.

So it would have to mean that something fundamental had changed in her as a response to something that had hurt her very badly. Sometimes people have clumsy ways of raising the alarm.

On the reasonable assumption that you choose your close friends with a bit of discernment OP, I'd read between the lines a bit here and see that your mate is testing you out to see if you'll realise the real backdrop to this presumably new attitude and behaviour.

And help her - and her husband.

ariane5 Wed 17-Apr-13 13:04:46

I really wouldn't know how to help?? What should I do or say?

I admit I have been very preoccupied especially the last year with having ds2 and dcs ill health so many times I've had to cancel/rearrange meeting up with her so maybe I have missed some warning signs.

I don't know how to approach it, it just seems so out of character she comes across as absolutely normal, sometimes a bit stressed/flustered but never overly controlling or jealous.
I really don't know what to say, if I bring it up next time I see her I don't want to sound interfering but it must be hell for her dh and immensely stressful for her constantly keeping track of him and worrying over things like him taking a drink from somebody.

badinage Wed 17-Apr-13 13:13:10

See I just find this so odd.

How good a friend is she really? And if you honestly don't know what to say, how good a friend are you?

The thing about not taking a drink means she's ill doesn't it?

If this were one of my friends, I'd clear my diary and devote a whole day to spend with her and I'd start by saying: "I'm very worried about you and what you said about x,y and z. This isn't normal behaviour and it's not your normal behaviour either. I'm here to help. What's brought this on?"

You're not interfering. She told you all this. She wouldn't have done so if she didn't expect you to have a reaction to it.

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