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Is a fast moving relationship always a red flag?

(25 Posts)
lunie Sun 16-Nov-14 13:01:44

In my mid 20s, I fell victim to a vile narcissist who, in hindsight, fit the description perfectly, and our relationship followed the classic over-evaluation, devaluation, discard pattern. he absolutely destroyed me. Lesson learned. (or so I thought)

I dated casually for a couple of years afterwards, which was just what I needed. Then I met my husband. We met online (as friends - neither of us had any intention of a relationship with each other), met up in person after a few months of chatting and fell in love almost immediately. Things moved fast - we were really loved up within weeks and he moved in with me after 3 or 4 months. we were married within a year of our first date and have now been married for 8 years.

I'd always sworn that I would never ever get into a relationship so fast again after my experience with the narcissist, but it felt very different with my husband. He never pretended to like the same things that I did or have the same opinions as me to con me into thinking he was my soul mate. He complimented me, but I think it was normal for the start of a relationship - not the over-flattery of a narcissist. Over the past 8 years he has stayed more or less the man that I met. I mean, he can be a right grumpy git and prone to sulking, but he's aware of this and jokes about it with me and is quite self aware and apologises when he realises that he's being a pain. He's a great dad and generally a good husband, albeit a bit of a workaholic.

The only causes for concern I've had about him are that a) he tends to think about his own needs more than other peoples. This, I would say, is down to his own father, who is an incredibly cold and detached man, and my husband is very warm and cuddly and thoughtful compared to him. b) We have had disagreements about money, in that I have been a SAHM and while I wasn't working, he refused to give me any money of my own, reasoning that he paid all the bills and mortgage, so I shouldn't need any. We argued about this many times and even though he was clearly unreasonable and in the wrong, he never relented about it. Again, this is down to his father, who never allowed his mum access to any money at all - he argues that it's normal for him. (In retrospect, his father is a right nasty bastard, isn't he?) However, other than that, he is really really great - lots of fun, affectionate, still my best friend, a good dad, someone I feel very safe with and have never ever been scared of.

I still wonder a fast moving relationship at the beginning always a red flag for trouble, or do the other signs have to be there too? I occasionally think about it too much and fear that I might have married a crazy person who will suddenly change and show his true colours like my ex did. Rationally, I think I've seen the worst of him already and that if he hasn't turned into a monster in 8 years, I doubt he ever will. What do you think?

FunkyBoldRibena Sun 16-Nov-14 13:12:36

I think that holding all the money means he holds all the cards. You ARE working, your job is looking after your kids. Still, if you are ok with that then no worries.

overslept Sun 16-Nov-14 13:28:28

I moved in with now DP after probably a total of 30 hours together, 4 months beforehand with no contact at all for those 4 months. We get on perfectly and it's fantastic. So no it's not always a red flag.

What you said about money is awful though, I don't have children but my DP has said he would happily pay his wage into my account every month after he has paid his insurance and bills in his name etc, on the grounds I sort out most of the bills and do all the shopping. I refused the kind offer but we are both not possessive about money at all, we have no "my money" mentality everything is ours. We never lend each other money either or expect it back, it's always "don't worry I'll pay for it" or "I'll transfer £200 over to you" if the other is short on cash. When DP was made redundant early this year I made sure his account was never empty, not just enough to cover car insurance etc but so he could afford things he wanted as well.
for me what you describe financially would be a deal breaker.

My DP thinks about my needs first, his own needs second and everybody else after that. I think that is how it should be, I put him first and would never think of myself before thinking of him. It works really well for us.

SmilesandPilesOfPresents Sun 16-Nov-14 13:40:47

Not always but it is when combined with other red flags.

Everyone has the odd thing that can be taken as a red flag, but when you notice there's a lot of them, you need to take a massive step back and seriously think about whether you want this to continue or not.

Guiltypleasures001 Sun 16-Nov-14 13:46:09

Hi op

There doesn't have to be dozens of red flags, one is often enough to not either continue on with the relationship or leave a marriage.

I'm sorry to say you've got one big glaring one, he says you don't need any money at all for yourself. So if this is the case what are you unable to buy for yourself? Sanitary wear, makeup clothes what? How far does his control of you go in this respect.

MiniTheMinx Sun 16-Nov-14 14:18:22

A fast moving relationship is not in itself a red flag. Although if you don't slow down and look around you on the journey and have time to reflect on each new discovery, one can miss the red flags. Such as, did you have time to discover his attitude towards money on route or discover this after?

SickInBedOnTwoChairs Sun 16-Nov-14 15:21:07

I met my DH in the October and he practically moved in from mid November. He proposed at Christmas and we got married the following June. We have now been married twelve years and it has been the best 12 years of my life. I had been 'round the block' worn out several pairs of shoes doing so before I met him and he had been married and divorced. I was 39 and he was 49. We are very different but have similar backgrounds. We just knew it was right.

Catzeyess Sun 16-Nov-14 15:47:52

I know loads of fast moving relationships which are lovely and have lasted - they met each other at the right time in life and everything happened quickly.

I have also had friends with fast moving relationships that are not so good

Tbh in my experience one of the biggest indicators is how the family and friends respond, if the relationship is good often the families were all really happy and supportive. If family and friends are not keen then tbh that's the best indicator the relationship is moving fast for the wrong reasons.

ArgyMargy Sun 16-Nov-14 15:52:45

We met & married fast and have been together 25 years. The thing about thinking of himself before others is not unusual in a man, I think. However the money thing is a red flag for me. It is really important to me in a relationship to share money ("for richer, for poorer"). Mind you, I hate meanness more than any other trait except violence.

LineRunner Sun 16-Nov-14 16:12:54

Are you working now?

Stalequavers Sun 16-Nov-14 16:36:25

Mine and dp relationship moved fast, we both wanted to be with each other so there was no games.

The fact that your dh is with holding money from you is abusive by the way. I absolutely could not stay with a man who didn't allow me access to money

Lweji Sun 16-Nov-14 16:49:59

He may not be a full on monster but at least some of his behaviour is abusive, if he withold money from you when you were a SAHM and knows he sulks and continues to do so. Joking about it is just a way of letting off responsibility over it.
You are excusing him through his father. It is his choice to be as he is.

lunie Sun 16-Nov-14 17:09:36

I'm working now, so the money thing is no longer much of an issue. I'm well aware that it was unacceptable behaviour, but the rest of the relationship was/is so good that I eventually decided after lots of arguments about it that got me nowhere that I could live with it, because it wasn't worth throwing away an otherwise very good marriage for that one issue. If it had been combined with him being lazy around the house as well, or him being a bad father, or verbally abusive or any other issue, I would have left him. But he makes me happy, not unhappy and I feel safe with him, not scared, abused or unsafe. My choice, albeit not one that I can imagine many will understand.

EhricLovesTheBhrothers Sun 16-Nov-14 17:21:01

Well you have shackled yourself to a misogynist who controls you financially and who sees himself as more important than you so yes, I'd say you should probably have slowed down and got to know him more before you made that commitment.

Lweji Sun 16-Nov-14 18:11:49

It's not an issue until the next baby, or if you lose your job.
The other side is that he wouldn't see your point of view.
What does he sulk about? Does he always get his way?

lunie Sun 16-Nov-14 18:33:18

The money thing would never have become apparent until we had a baby or if I lost my job. It would have been entirely possible for me to have been with him for 10 years before marrying him and for it never to have reared its head, so I don't think settling down with him quickly made any difference in that sense.

No, he doesn't always get his own way. If he's sulking, I leave him to it and ignore him until he snaps out of it, or bollock him. He's perfectly open to seeing my point of view on all other issues, and is very respectful towards me in all other areas. It's like a 'blind spot' to him.

Lweji Sun 16-Nov-14 18:45:13

True, it has nothing to do with fast moving relationships.
The only danger is that important issues may never be discussed, but that can be true of slower moving relationships.
More than anything, I think it's important that key subjects are discussed before committing to the extent of marriage. Slower relationships may allow time for the rose tinted glasses to come off and for true colours to show up, though.

For the future, I wouldn't have a child with him again without setting up what happens financially. Put it on the other foot if you have to, or refuse to have such child if necessary.

The problem with such men is that if you become dependent on them, they will easily become abusive. Be warned.

EhricLovesTheBhrothers Sun 16-Nov-14 18:58:10

Did you not think to discuss finances before you moved in together and had a child? It would have cropped up if you had discussed it, unless you did and he lied?
If that's the case, and he's a lying misogynist, then going more slowly would doubtless have exposed that trait in some other way. Nobody can maintain a pretence of being a decent person for years on end, sooner or later the cracks show. That's the benefit of waiting.

ArgyMargy Sun 16-Nov-14 19:01:45

I completely disagree about the money thing not becoming apparent until you had a child. When I married we immediately opened a joint account and all our money became OUR money from then on. My house became our house. Anything else was unthinkable for me. Money is shown time & again to be a top cause of trouble in relationships and the modern tendency for couples to want their "own" money has only made this worse.

Stalequavers Sun 16-Nov-14 19:13:48

lunie how would you feel if your dc was with a man that refused to let her have access to money? It's a massive sticking point for me. The fact that a man had so little respect for you to be able to buy do thing when you wanted it.

As an adult, you are entitled to have access to money, otherwise you are little more than hired help. It's such a fundamentally basic right that your dh had a 'blind spot' too. I couldn't have ignored that because he was a good dad or made you happy because underneath that he had very little respect for your needs to be an independent woman.

I'm glad you are working now and in that position. Please don't allow that again or fir your children to think that it's acceptable because it isn't.

Stalequavers Sun 16-Nov-14 19:16:45

I'll just add that I'm a SAHM and I probably have more say over 'our' money than DP, he would never take access to money away because he doesn't think like that.

Lweji Sun 16-Nov-14 19:23:07

I only disagree with Argy in that having separate accounts is a problem. More the concept of my over our money.
ExH and I had separate accounts for years after we married, but we treated finances as joint.
A financial abuser will take over a joint account anyway, screen expenses and so on.
The main thing is attitude towards money rather than the actual accounts.

FunkyBoldRibena Sun 16-Nov-14 22:30:21

Its not a blind spot, its a control mechanism.

AnyFucker Sun 16-Nov-14 22:38:30

You are with a financially abusive man

How is that ok because he doesn't get pissed and twat you about the head every saturday night?

Stupidhead Mon 17-Nov-14 04:16:39

We don't have a joint account, he earns loads more than me but classes it as 'our' money.

Your relationship doesn't seem to have happened too quickly, you said yourself that you spent months chatting online with him so probably knew him better when you got together than most people do after months of dating. Well, you knew him apart from the money aspect.

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