Don't know how to handle this!(25 Posts)
I was just about to leave work this afternoon when I received a call from my DH - he had the spent the night away at his dad's - he was calling to warn me he had bought a car and had been working on it with his dad so it would pass the mot and would be driving it back home tonight.
I didn't say much at the time as I felt furious and I had my colleagues sitting round me and didnt want to make a scene in front of them. When I came off the phone I could feel myself shaking with anger and had to really hold back the tears.
Just got home and burst into tears and I'm desperately trying to work out what I am so upset about. Firstly, we are not hard up but Dhs job has involved a paycut of around 300 pounds a month since last September, this unfortunately coincided with us remortgaging our property and committing to bigger payments to take advantage of the low interest rates so we were suddenly having to save 600pounds a month. I have been carefully budgetting and we are managing but if we have any extra money we need to be saving or spending money on some much needed diy around the house. We have managed with one car for 10 years now and we have no need for a second car. Secondly it is the deceit of planning and buying the car in cahoots with his dad without discussing it with me first. Thirdly it feels like the straw that breaks the camels back as we have a whole heap of relationship issues and to me it feels like the beginning of the end.
For info, I believe he has bought the car to give him more freedom to carry on with his hobby - which he already spends far too much time doing - disappears at any given opportunity, hence why there is no way I would have agreed to buying a second car.
Not sure what advice I'm looking for, just don't know where to start or how to be with him when he returns tonight. Sorry for the slightly incoherent ramblings ...
I'd tell him to stay at his dad's for the time being. It would give you a bit of space, as well as some time to calm down.
I don't blame you for being angry. I would be too. What he's done is selfish and deceitful. Do you have dcs?
I think you've set everything out pretty comprehensively above. Why not print it out and use it as an aide memoire when you tackle him about going behind your back, spending family money that you can ill afford without your knowledge and generally acting like a selfish git/single guy? Careful budgeting and keeping all the financial balls in the air is a pretty stressful thing. I know exactly how upsetting it is to feel that you're the responsible one earning money, scrimping, making sacrifices and getting the family from month end to month end.... whilst the other person asually spends it like a sailor on shore-leave.
Whatever the other relationship issues may be keep your focus on the deceit. Stay calm, write down what you want to say, then say it. Good luck
he was calling to warn me he had bought a car
It would be considerate of you to call him too, to warn him you are seeing a solicitor.
You could see a solicitor, just so you know where you will stand financially if you did, eventually, decide to go your separate ways. No firm decision, of course, you were just looking into it for the reasons you explained in your OP........... but you were just letting him know
It would be considerate of you to call him too, to warn him you are seeing a solicitor.
Sounds about right.
Thanks for the replies everyone, felt so desperate earlier, have now picked the DCs up from school, so have pulled myself together.
Springdiva I feel very tempted to do what you suggest, I think it would shock him. I just can't understand what is going on in his head. We last had a serious 'talk' back in October when I felt I spelt it out very clearly to him about his 'detachment' from the family and his generally uselessness with the DC as well as other issues concerning how he talks to me, mocks my work, beliefs etc. I got very down a few months ago as I realised I had mentally given up trying to make things work and generally preferred to keep out of his way. I am at the stage where I am relieved when he goes out in the evening. The only time I pull him up on it is when I feel he hasn't spent enough time with the DCs.
We have been married for 17 years and I can't quite believe the man he has turned in to - I obviously don't regret it because of our wonderful DC but it breaks my heart that he doesn't see how wonderful they are and want to spend time with them. They are of the age now that they realise what is going on and the fact that daddy would rather spend time doing his hobby rather than spending time as a family.
I am also concerned that when I see him tonight it will just turn into a massive argument which will then all turn into my fault. Do you really think that calling him and telling him I'm seeing a solicitor will make him think or just make the situation worse?
Whocan - I'd love for his to stay at his dads but he is due back at work tomorrow and I'm not sure he could get to work on time from where his dad lives.
Cogito - ultimately do you think I should be pushing for him to get shot of the car? Just thinking about it makes me so angry, I thought i had calmed down and I can now feel it all bubbling up again .... Arghhhhh!!
One more thing . . . It feels like he isn't worried about my reaction ultimately as he doesn't believe I would ever leave him. Also because of my indifference to him over the past few months he may think I just don't care what he does.
Sorry feels like I've got verbal diarrhoea at the moment, it is useful to capture my musings in writing like this!
The questions I would want answers for are:
When did he decide to buy the car?
Why did he not discuss it with you beforehand?
How does he think it is going to impact on the family finances? (not just the cost of the car - tax, insurance, petrol, maintenance)
How does he propose that the family expenditure will not suffer as a result of his decision? (hint - the money comes from him reducing money spent on his hobby)
How does he propose to rectify the trust issues he has created?
Thanks Beryl that's really helpful, I feel in such a flap at the moment I'm concerned I will not be very articulate!
I'd add... what is he going to sell, give up or earn to compensate for the car money he took without asking? If he's the type that turns any kind of request to grow up into a personal attack on you he's not going to take any notice. As for mentioning solicitors ... you know the guy. Is he going to get aggressive if he feels threatened or might it make him sober up fast?
I don't thin it would hurt to get some legal advice anyway. It sounds as if the car is just the tip of the iceburg here.
Beryl's list is excellent.
Hmmm lots to think about. I'm not sure how he would respond, he sounded concerned and quite reasonable on the phone but he can turn very quickly.
I've just been thinking about an argument we had Saturday night; he was about to disappear off to his hobby again and my dd mentioned she fancied Chinese for dinner. I had explained that we couldn't afford a takeaway but we could pop down to the shops and buy some items to do a homemade version at home. Dh got very funny about me stopping him doing what he wanted to do (as i needed the car and he wanted to use it too to go out) that I should have thought about dinner earlier and that there was plenty of food in the fridge; he really lost it and started going on about how large the last credit card bill was and how I think money grows on trees - I asked him to go away and calm down as I didn't want to discuss our financial situation in front of our dd and certainly didnt want to argue in front of her. It did confuse me afterwards as it seemed a massive over-reaction and it did upset my dd and cause all of us to feel a bit down that evening.
Arghhhh!! He is seriously driving me bonkers . . . He has just called to say good night to DCs as he wont be home before their bedtime . . . Then just dropped into the conversation that he was on the train on the way back home???! I said what had happened to the car and he said he'd talk to me about it when he got home. He seemed totally perplexed by my reaction and said he couldn't talk any more as he was in the 'quiet' carriage! And breathe . . . .
Beryl - it's shooting, pigeons, foxes and clays. I don't think he spends a huge amount of money as he has secured various permissions with the local farmers to shoot on their land - I would guess he spends £700 a year on shot gun cartridges, clays etc. But he is free to come and go as be pleases, sometimes he meets up with friends but often he goes on his own.
Sounds like he had a chat with his dad and they decided to buy a car so your dh could come and go without disrupting his family. Very sudden decision, after all this time. Deeply unfair as he should have discussed with you, Beryl's list is excellent.
What's this hobby that seems to have consumed his life? Has he been doing it for long?
It sounds like you and the dc are doing all the cutting back and he is doing what he likes and you'll manage somehow by yet more frugality with yours and the dc life, whilst he carries on his merry way. I'm alright, jack is a saying that springs to mind.
Is does feel like that Lavender. The hobby has built up since the DC arrived, we were a couple for almost 10 years and I could count on one hand the number of times he went shooting. I think it was a big hobby for him when he was at school. He went to boarding school and was a member of the shooting team there, he also shot at local farms to his parents house until he moved away. It wasn't something I was conscious that he gave up when we met.
Ehric - I think that is what scares me, because at the moment I can't imagine things improving and rather than continuing to be passive, I need to start taking action.
His 'hobby' is an excuse he is using to get out of his parenting responsibilities, you know that don't you?
How about writing out Beryl's excellent questions but addressed to him, i.e. When did you decide... Why did you not discuss...etc.
his explanation about the car is not satisfactory you want them answered, handing him the paper and saying to him: I'm too angry with you to try and have a conversation so have written this down. Please read it out and give me your answers.
You say you can't believe the man he has turned into.
You need to change though, nagging him to be better or to change won't work.
An honest discussion might help, not telling him to change, instead tell him what you say here that you can't understand why he doesn't want to spend time with the DCs, why he prefers his hobby?
I agree that it's terribly unfair that he gets cash/time to spend on his hobby when you don't get the same curtesy.
I would be incandescent that he'd plotted behind my back to buy a car, and that he was refusing to talk about it (even temporarily whilst on the train). on your behalf.
His time with his hobby should have waned with the growing up of the dc and their hobbies and needs, plus yours.
Don't the dc want to join in with him? Can't he have a new hobby everyone can do? Geo caching or something?
My dh has a hobby which has been dormant for a number of years. He plans to include the dc when they are old enough. I hope they like it or he won't be doing it. Sounds harsh, but its a time consuming and expensive one, which is ok when single but not when you have a family. We did have words..
I hope your dh and you have an illuminating chat.
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