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Walking on Eggshells

(24 Posts)
HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Fri 17-May-13 21:16:54

Does anyone else feel like they're constantly tiptoeing around their DH?

Mine seems to tant about the most minor things. Tonight he has stormed off after a night out (before we got to supper) because he couldn't find something in my bag when I'd gone to the loo. When I said where it was he flew off the handle quite publicly.

I feel like he's always looking out for me to criticise him. I'm not critical of him but he sees it in everything. A recent example is that I asked him to pick up some tomatoes on the way home from work the other day. When he came home with not quite enough I didn't say anything but the next time I asked, I asked that he buy a few more than last time. Cue an epic sulk.

Tonight he came up with an old favourite when I said where the thing he was looking for was and how it wasn't where I expected it to be. "Well that's not my problem" - it kind of is if he's getting his knickers in a twist!

He's now shouted at me in the street and when I walked away (mortally embarrassed) he shouted again and again "Hotel, come here" like I was an errant dog or something.

I don't want to LTB but could do with some help. I can't say anything he might see as critical without him having a tant, so can't even say "darling, please don't leave your wet towel on the bed" without tantrums and abuse.

HeySoulSister Fri 17-May-13 21:21:09

Don't want to leave him? You'll have to get used to it then.... Getting worse as he gets older is it?

LeaveTheBastid Fri 17-May-13 21:21:38

hmm he sounds awful. Nothing romantic about living with a giant man child with his knickers constantly in a twist. How draining. I also don't like he sound of him publicly humiating you by causing scenes and shouting after you as you put it, like a dog. Where is his respect for you?

Does he have any good points?

Hassled Fri 17-May-13 21:23:35

You don't want to LTB but really, is that any way to live your life?

Does he behave like this with other people or does he save it up just for you?

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Fri 17-May-13 21:25:22

Yes he has good points. Right now I need to come up with a strategy to deal with him when he behaves like this. He spoils a lot of nights out and it feels so draining (and such a waste of time and money). Then he apologises for both of us "saying things we don't mean" when all I've done is ask for fucking tomatoes, or bang my head or the like!

LeaveTheBastid Fri 17-May-13 21:30:11

A good strategy would be to tell him to fuck off and get over himself.

You don't need a coping strategy, he isn't a stroppy toddler. Although he may act like one. Perhaps a reward chart?

A coping strategy is only going to paint over the issue. Paint can only cover so much. You need to call him out on this and tell him to sort himself out because honestly, that behaviour is appalling for a brown man. How would he react if you were to act as he does on a night out?

LeaveTheBastid Fri 17-May-13 21:30:36

*grown man, not brown man! hmm

tallwivglasses Fri 17-May-13 21:38:41

Are you looking for advice about how to change him? It ain't going to happen love, sorry...not until he realises he's being such an arsehole.

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Fri 17-May-13 21:40:15

No I'm not looking for advice on how to change him. I'm looking for advice on how to make this work. I don't want to fail at my marriage the way I fail at everything else.

foolonthehill Fri 17-May-13 21:42:27

^Right now I need to come up with a strategy to deal with him when he behaves like this^

no you need to be able to maintain a safe boundary with him at all times and to make sure that you do not under any circumstances bring children into this relationship (though you may already have sad)

A person who feels that he is entitled to behave like this with his WIFE, the person that he has promised to love, honour and keep (or similar) is not going to improve or respond to strategising because he thinks that this is his right, to act like this.

You may "manage" his behaviour from time to time up to a point, you may indeed find a way to keep the peace for the most part. Walking on eggshells, anticipating his mood, needs, wants, preferences, restricting your social life and absorbing all stress, taking the blame for the 10% that is you and letting him get away with the 90% that is him, pouring oil on troubled waters, suppressing your needs and wants to cater to his. Yes you can do all this, many have. You could do this...but why would you?

On the other hand you can call him on it, tell him it is totally unacceptable, he needs to leave, he needs to address his issues of control and entitlement and after a sustained period of exemplary respectful and non-controlling behaviour you may, if you wish to, re-enter the marriage and enjoy life with a true partner and equal.

I absolutely believe in not giving up on marriage...but marriage is a partnership, he needs to take responsibility for his part...then it will be a marriage.

HeySoulSister Fri 17-May-13 21:42:27

You can't make it work ... It has to come from him

LeaveTheBastid Fri 17-May-13 21:43:58

He is failing at your marriage, not you. You enabling him to be an emotionally draining spoilt brat of a husband is not going to do either of you any favours. Is this how you imagined marriage to be?

foolonthehill Fri 17-May-13 21:49:02

You feel that you would have failed at your marriage...but it is not you is it? It is him. You cannot change someone else, you can only be responsible for yourself, for your actions, reactions.

And who thinks you fail at everything?? We all have our successes and failures...sometimes spectacular ones. The best and most successful business people have usually been bankrupt at least once.

You like everyone else, have a whole raft of amazing attributes and qualities. being a success is about learning how to use those, and how you personally measure success.

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Fri 17-May-13 21:56:24

I am we'll known as Hotel-never-sticks-at-anything.

He's still shouting (yet claiming that I am shouting and not letting him get a word in edge ways).

HotelTangoFoxtrotUniform Fri 17-May-13 21:56:46

Well. Bastard ipad

LeaveTheBastid Fri 17-May-13 21:58:24

I think you have a bloody good reason to not stick at this one.

Takes strength to walk away from things that make you nothing but happy and fulfilled. Why should you settle for less? How is that failing?

myroomisatip Fri 17-May-13 22:00:44

This is not your problem... he is the problem. And it will only get worse as others have said!

You are walking on eggshells now? You are not the failure here sad Your problem is trying to keep him happy and that will become more and more difficult with each month/year that passes.

foolonthehill Fri 17-May-13 22:06:01

have you read this? Talking bad

and this? Feeling bad

SolidGoldBrass Fri 17-May-13 22:08:47

Laugh at him. Every time he tantrums, point and laugh and encourage other people to do the same. He'll either grow out of it or his behaviour will worsen to the point that it's obvious your best response is to dump his sorry arse.

Zazzles007 Sat 18-May-13 00:01:00

OP I dated someone who sounds a lot like your H. He was completely unable to control and maintain emotional stablility, and would treat every discussion as if I were trying to verbally attack him. Even if the discussions were about mundane, where are we going to have dinner discussions.

On one occassion I was trying to disuss something I was going to do for him, and he turned around and said "You never think of me" shock, when of course the truth was that I spent a lot of time thinking about him. In retrospect, I have a feeling that he had Borderline Personality Disorder, in which one of the features is having problems with interpersonal relationships. He was also enormously narcissistic. People with this disorder seem to strop and carry on like huge 3 yr olds, and have a hugely disordered way of seeing reality.

After 12 months of this behaviour, I decided I couldn't keep on walking on eggshells. And the worst thing was, ex-workmates met him and said "You're not yourself anymore". After the above incident, I resolved never to have this arsehole in my life any longer, and I left him.

OhLori Sat 18-May-13 00:09:42

Get some balls OP. Honestly, it can be that simple. Watch what happens. Its probably enlightening ...

tallwivglasses Sat 18-May-13 00:09:46

You don't want to leave him, that's fine. I'd give it a bit of time, say, 3-6 months (don't tell him, mind) see if things improve.

DonDrapersAltrEgoBigglesDraper Sat 18-May-13 00:31:18

Nobody's going to give you advice on how to make this work. They'd be doing you such a disservice if they did.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 18-May-13 06:46:31

"I don't want to fail at my marriage the way I fail at everything else"

You're married to a bully. Which means you have roughly three choices.
1. Do nothing, carry on being subjected to bullying behaviour, watch it escalate and gradually see your self-esteem and your happiness disappear down the toilet.
2. Stand up for yourself every time he attempts bullying. Match criticism with criticism, shout with shout and contempt with contempt. Let nothing go. Make no excuses for his behaviour. Don't be placated with fake apologies. This will save some of your self-esteem but it's a pretty stressful way to live. You will either end up sick, on ADs or self-medicating with booze, food, credit-cards etc.
3. Tell him you've had enough and to get lost and bully someone else. Because right now he knows you don't want to 'fail' at marriage and he's shamelessly exploiting that knowledge. He has no incentive to behave any differently. He's 'all right Jack'.

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