Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Advice needed. Should I stay with my partner?(35 Posts)
Advice needed and honesty appreciated.
I have been with my partner for nearly 2 years and I have a 4 month old baby. We have fun together and get alone well most of the time but I just feel he doesn't notice or appreciate me any more and quite frankly I find him quite throughtless.
When we found out I was pregnant he was brilliant, he moved to my area and we bought a house. He pays all the bills and I don't have to worry about money at all and he works very hard. But when I was pregnant I suffered very bad mourning sickness yet got no sympathy or help at all. I worked long hours full time, did all the cooking and cleaning, he never lifts a finger, and over Christmas was dragged through several social functions, some until 4 in the morning ( we were away with family so I couldn't leave, and I was also taxi) and there was no consideration for me. Now we have baby I am finding it quite difficult with the lack of sleep and keeping on top of day to day life as he does not lift a finger. I have spoken to him several times but I get nothing, he says he does help and he tries his best. But his best isn't good enough, doing the washing up after being cooked for isn't much help. He never gets up in the night and now is growing very little affection towards me. I have told him I have been feeling very low but don't get much of a response. I also have missed all of my social activities planned over the festive period due to being so tired and worn out but he has attended all of his sometimes going out until 4 in the morning. And last night was the final straw, I was crying and saying how tired and upset I was so he finally agreed to look after baby all night. To which I woke in the night to find baby crying for ages and him in bed awake, when I asked what was going on he said is was letting baby cry it out, something which we don't agree to, he just couldn't be bothered to deal with baby. And when I went baby was just hungry, fed and when straight back to sleep?
I am unsure what to do. I am starting to feel like I hate my partner and I am feeling so miserable.
Your sentence which states that you have fun together and get along well most of the time is not at all borne out by the rest of your posting.
That's you desperately trying to put a gloss over the cracks. He is no loving partner to you nor much of a father to his child. It sounds like you and he have had words over him letting his child cry it out before now too.
What do you get out of this relationship now?.
The rot really started here after you became pregnant; then he really did stop considering you at all as a person. He has in the meantime pretty much maintained his previous lifestyle.
I would be looking to make a new life for myself and your child without him in it day to day. Better to be apart and happier than to be together and miserable as you are now.
What is the situation re the property; are you named on the mortgage and or title deeds?.
Yes I am named on the mortgage. As when I was working everything was 50/50. It's only now while I'm on mat leave that he pays for everything. This is why I am worried that when I go back to work I will be exhausted. He says that I am too demanding and that I expect to much from him and that he can never make me happy.
I think he is projecting his own stuff onto you. I also think he protests too much. He is doing precisely nothing at home apart from some cooking and some washing up. Its the barest of bare minimums.
You do not get much if anything out of this relationship now do you?.
To me honest no not really. I try to make such a effort, doing little things, buying outfits, getting him special ale, cooking his favourite dinner, ironing his clothes, making a effort with myself. It all is expected now so goes unnoticed. Just feel like a mother now not a partner. Just don't want to see my baby every other weekend.
You do all those things for him and lower yourself further in the process. What does he do for you?. This is not someone who respects you at all is he?.
What did you learn about relationships when growing up?.
Do you think that such a man would be at all interested in seeing his child post separation?. He cannot be bothered to look after his child during the night currently. What makes you think he would want to do an entire weekend?.
He would definitely want to see his son but probably with help from his mum. If we were to separate I am sure he would've back to his mums 3 hours away initially. I was trying to make a effort but your right he is making no effort at all.
You are the only one to decide that. I can't see that separating would improve things for you though....
I can see you are tired & fed up & that impacts on how you feel about yr relationship.
Ideally couples should aim to have the same amount of "free" time so if one partner does not work outside the home they should do most domestic tasks & get up with the baby during weeknights - because they can catch up on sleep e.g. when baby naps - perhaps yr partner could do weekend night's & maybe you each get a bit of a weekend lie in one day each.
Btw please don't think I am being unreasonable/taking his side etc - i was a single parent working fulltime & I do know what exhaustion is - as I get older I find work much more tiring than domestic stuff ( though probably don't do enough of latter because of it! :/ ) I think he is probably finding it difficult to decide what to do as yr standards are rather exacting e.g. "his best is not enough" is not a helpfully negotiating stance!
I do not think OPs standards are too exacting at all; this man of hers is too bone idle at home to look after his child at night and has let his child cry it out (that also seems to be a recurring issue as well). All such lazy men seem to care about is their own self. He has and continues to show no consideration for OP either.
Better to be alone than to be badly accompanied.
I think many can relate to what you're going through.
Thank god I didn't leave my DH and we worked it out.
I thought telling my DH was enough to get him to give me the help I needed. Truth is that my DH doesn't look at the world the same way I do, doesn't share my strengths and weaknesses so I needed to list how he could best help.
As far as your baby crying goes, you could use this as an example. He can nor appreciate how hard it can be and that's why you are do frazzled.
I'd certainly not advise LTB after only 4 months of this.
Set down on a list what you need, present it to him (leave it on the fridge so he doesn't forget or have any excuse) then re-evaluate after a period to see if things have improved. If the haven't then you can go down the lines of ultimatums to leave.
Write a list for him?!. Why can't he write a list of his own?. She should not have to be reduced to writing him a bloody list; he knows that there are jobs to do but he may well think that is all "womens work" because he is out all day long working himself (diddums).
You appear to be under the impression that if you just try a little harder, do a little bit more, for a little bit longer... he'll improve. It doesn't work like that.
When we found out I was pregnant he was brilliant Just exactly how has he been brilliant as a partner and father? From what I can see it involved moving in with you and benefiting from all that brings.
Write a list for him?!. Why can't he write a list of his own?. She should not have to be reduced to writing him a bloody list; he knows that there are jobs to do but he may well think that is all "womens work" because he is out all day long working himself
You've completely missed the point.
I'll reverse this to see if it makes more sense to you.
My DH could say the same of me. There are jobs that need doing that he sees, that are important to him and the running of our home, that I'm blind to.
I never noticed the guttering needed replacing, the walls needed repointing, thought about loft insulation or rewiring or plumbing or the boiler etc.
These things were obvious to him and something that weighed heavy on his mind but didn't even feature on my radar! It stands to reason the same goes the other way around. People have different priorities and see different things, that normal.
When my DH did me a list (I live by lists!) I was able to work through each and do what he felt needed doing. He doesn't get precious about it being 'obvious' what needed doing and what was important and wondering wtf he should have to write me a list of his top priorities.
He could have taken your stance and chosen to get arsey and escalate matters rather than finding a way to communicate and ensuring we are better able to work together as a team.
Likewise, I do the same for him. Neither of us get offended, just benefit from each of us being happier because the issues get addressed with the least amount if fuss.
Hope this helps
Oh and I don't see it as 'mans work' I just don't see it at all
When I do, I'm happy to get stuck in it get quotes for the things I can't do.
All the time the lists are written, we then notice more of what each other notices too as time goes on
A list is not going to help at all here Joysmum. It works for you and that is great but do you honestly think she writing a list is going to solve this?. Its not that simple.
A list is also not going to at all address his underlying lack of empathy. He knows what he has to do and for whatever reasons cannot be bothered to do it. He likely sees this as "her work", such attitudes are also deeply ingrained.
I agree with spelling out exactly what you want done and write a list. Rather than just saying he doesn't help enough. Like he must cook the evening meal on days x y and z. And you will take turns to get a lie in at the weekend. But it is hard getting up and going into work when you've been awake with a DC.
Agree with Joy about the lists and priorities. Who cares who wrote the lists fgs? OP, four months in with a new baby is a tricky time. You are properly exhausted, the birth euphoria has worn off, outsiders have lost interest to some degree and it's all down to you. And I think it's very, very common for men to fall into the mindset that you've recovered from the birth, 'just' got to sort the baby out and how come you can't manage to do the house etc, too? Now clearly not all men think this and there are many shades of grey but you get the gist. Men are still inhabiting the Real World for most of the day and have absolutely no idea how tiring it all is.
Add to that the distinct possibility of pnd occurring around this time and tbh, I think a lot of women find this a very tough time. If he isn't the empathetic type, do you have female friends you can offload to? It helps. Prioritise the stuff you have to get done and what can wait (his ironing) and let him notice you again as an equal.
Sorry, this is a bit rambly but don't be fooled into thinking everyone else has fantastic and perfect lives with a new baby, new house and from what I have understood, living together quite newly.
Do talk to him but you can make things change a little anyway. And if you think you could be a little depressed, please have a chat with your GP.
This is not and has never been about lists or a lack of them. Its not going to make him any more empathetic to her needs. Being male also does not give him a pass to do the barest of minimums at home. Its his child too, he has equal responsibility here. OP will one day go back full time and still will do far more at home than he ever does or will do.
Perhaps he is doing less at home deliberately so she can take up the slack; if he also does it badly enough then she will take over as well.
I honestly cannot see OPs man improving at all here mainly because there is no will on his part to do so.
Re this comment that OP wrote:-
"He says that I am too demanding and that I expect to much from him and that he can never make me happy".
That was a low blow to her from him too.
You can make all the assumptions you want based on the OP, just as I have. I like to assume that we've chosen good men to be with, until we've been through the cycle of communication and consequences. A LTB recommendation, or assumption he's misogensitic when he's not been in the past is premature imo, and damaging to the OP who clearly is struggling.
I saw the bit in the OP where he's been great in the past and so could be again, and where he was doing something but it's the wrong thing. He needs to know that. He needs to be clear what is the most important things he can help with because 20mins of clearing up after dinner the OP thinks could be better spent.
I don't see what's contraversial about trying the list idea? Surely it's worth trying the full cycle of trying to inprove things?
As I rambled on up-thread, I thought I was doing ok doing what was needed in our household but my DH didnt see it that way. Likewise, he's cleaned the windows and thought he was helping and I really couldn't give a flying fuck about those, that's on the D list of things that get done if everything else is done! We had no food in the house, how could he not see that! He's not to know because he was as blind to it as I was.
A list is clear and a constant visible reminder.
It's no wonder there are so many relationship breakdowns given the posts I see in relationships! I come at it from a practical and fix it attitude, rather than going straight in for the LTB attitude and assumption of misogeny. Of course, down the line who's to say what might happen but at least go through the cycle of trying everything first.
I'm glad I did otherwise is have pissed away a wonderful marriage based on a bad patch. I've said before I'd never post on here again for advice on how to fix a relationship, it's great to get advice and support on how to end a relationship though
If a list is at all written here, he needs to write it and not the OP. He is an adult and he is perfectly capable of seeing what needs to be done here.
She is really miserable for good reason; he is simply not pulling his weight here. As for his comment that she expects too much from him; well that is just plain nasty on his part. This is rich from a man whose contribution to the housework is to do some washing up after cooking for her (and him). Its the barest of bare minimums really.
The rot really started here for OP when she became pg, there were indeed indicators then that all was not well in their relationship. His lack of caring became far more obvious after OP became pg, he basically carried on as before and did not lift a finger to assist when OP was at that time working full time.
I have asked OP what she gets out of this relationship now (nothing about LTB and I have not used that phrase at all), her response to that question spoke volumes.
A relationship cannot be improved or fixed if only one person is willing to put the work into it.
I agree joysmum too often LTB seems to be the default setting & it's as if there is this (unattainable) level of perfection required of others and not applied to self...
And I keep thinking these are people's lives we, who do not have to live with the consequences, are so eagerly commenting on...
Hi all thanks for you comments.
Firstly I have done lists and jobs. Never worked. And it's not perfection I expect?!? But who will feed us and clothes us if it's not done?
Also the PND is a massive cop out and offensive. I have experience of people with depression and I definitely don't have it. My partner shows not empathy, love or support, that is the problem not my mental health.
I have a fantastic supportive family and a wide group or friends and mummy friends! I am not low because I am on my own but why should my family look after our baby because my partner cant be arsed!
I agree with have different ideas of what needs doing but stuffing things into a full bin when it can't close??? Don't tell me that's not obvious. But as I said it's the massive lack of empathy! When pregnant I was expected to travel and was sick in car, airport, place etc. then once away was expected to be out to parties and functions until 4am being sick and sober.
When baby was born I was expected to have family over to stay for weekends, every weekend, clean the house, cook roasts and fry ups and do all the food shopping. As well as entertain with a new born. We even had his niece 2 and nephew 5 for the whole half term week!!!!! So his sister could have a weeks rest!!! No consideration for me at all.
I love this man but I am beginning to wonder why.
Ok so he thinks your role is to raise the baby and manage the home while he goes to work. He thinks that as he lives near your family and friends you have a lot of support and help. Which you do.
Your family should be the ones to help because they don't live three hours away.
Some women are happy to do the night feeds whilst on maternity and then share them on a weekend.
If you aren't happy with his contribution, and you have discussed it with him you need to change tactic.
Advise him that your baby is the responsibility of both of you. Although he finishes at 5 family life does not stop. It continues and if he wants to be a part of it he needs to contribute on a practical level.
Also being a new parent is hard. Without sounding rude you shouldn't necessarily be looking to your partner to solve all of your problems because that is causing you problems. Can you pay for a cleaner? Get help with the ironing?
Just because he isn't a domestic goddess it doesn't mean you should LTB IMO.
Its not even about him not being a so called domestic goddess; his own lack of empathy is the far bigger problem here. He likely feels that his going to work and earning the cash is justification enough for him not to seemingly do anything in terms of chores at home.
What sort of household did this man grow up in OP?. It may well be that his own mother did everything at home with her own H and family doing nothing or next to nothing chores wise around the house; that sort of ingrained attitude if there is nigh on impossible to change.
I would seriously consider your future within this OP because you are really looking at more of the same.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now »
Already registered? Log in with:
Please login first.