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Feeling stuck in this relationship :((6 Posts)
It's going to be a long message for what I apologise.. I haven't posted on MN before, but I've found a lot of the relationship advice on here very useful. It got me thinking that I might be in an abusive relationship myself..
I must say that my dh looks like a perfect man from first glance and is never violent or uninvolved and loves our dd very much. I'm sure there are subtle ways that he uses to put me in my place and it makes me very unhappy. He is aware that I have no other close relationships here as I left my family and friends when I moved from abroad.
The problem got worse when I lost a source of my income a few weeks ago and as a sahm I became completely dependent on him. We had a conversation where I asked if we could have a joint account and he said he wouldn't want to give me access to his existing account because he doesn't trust me. After I was trying to persuade him, he drew up a list of things "examples of me double-crossing him" as he puts it. In it he put things that happened quite a few years ago and that we talked out ( and decided to stay together and had a dd after that), but also things like "you said you needed to go home to sleep, but instead you were ordering online groceries".
I do get emotional when he calls me 'untrustworthy' (I feel I am doing everything for the benefit of my family) and it's especially painful when he says he doesn't take me seriously if I cry. I asked how could we live as a family if he doesn't trust me and he said that I needed to 'earn his trust' first.
I feel completely trapped in this situation. I know that there is a lack of respect from both sides (I hate that he treats me this way), but the power imbalance is like an elephant in the room and this is why I think he isn't trying so hard.
I don't know what to do, but I can't go on like this anymore
Ok, first of all, what do you want to do? Do you want to fix the things with him or do you want to leave?
If it is about fixing, going to Relate may help him to understand how horrible it feels not to have your own money, and you will also need to find a job quickly for your own sanity. Having the income will make him more respectful of your opinions (some men are really convinced that the one that brings the money is the one that calls the shots), but most importantly, it will give you the freedom to leave if you continue to be unhappy.
If you want to leave... Again, find the job and start planing/preparing to leave.
Thanks for your reply, MeMySonAndI. I really wouldn't want to break up my family and leave, I've really got nowhere to go as well.. I would like to do anything it takes to fix it and I'm considering Relate, but they're closed right now. We've had counselling together before and it was moderately helpful, although it didn't change his general attitude that he's the boss.
I'd love to get working and earning to retain independence and, as you say, some sanity. But I'm not qualified and moreover I'm afraid to put dd in the nursery because I don't think she will cope well without me and I really don't want to be away from her ( she just turned 1 and is still bf every few hours due to teething). I've been calling local childminders, but they want full days fulltime or nothing. I was trying to work from home, but it was hell doing that while she's climbing over me.
I really wish dh and I could work together instead of against each other, but he doesn't seem to view me as an equal partner..
This sounds like a very emotionally abusive relationship and that he is emotionally blackmailing you and has a horribly superior attitude. You could call Women's Aid and get their advice. Can you start making a plan for the next year? Are you from another nation?
There's no 'seem' about it. He believes he is superior to you, owns you, and that he is basically 'carrying' you, this woman that he can't trust. It is a thoroughly unequal relationship and it's very common for bullies (emotional abusers if you prefer) to only show their true colours with the arrival of the first child. Your SAHM status could be a contributing factor or it could be a coincidence.
There are only a few choices here. If you want to work together with him you have to assert yourself and stand up to him. Demand equal access to joint finances, demand respect, and do whatever it takes to get the power swinging back your way - up to and including taking legal advice on what your rights would be in the event of a split. If you've had enough of being with this bully then skip straight to the last part and start planning a better life, independent of him and where you have 100% of the influence.
He is extremely patronising and possibly arrogant maybe even a bully and a chauvinist. Please let us know his redeeming features. For many reasons I think that you should get some kind of work even if part time. You DD will benefit from benefits of nursery incl social skills and independence. It is hard the first week or so but then it settles down ad you will see the benefits for everyone.
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