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I walk into a room and he walks out + totally disengaged from our children + he is so damn miserable

(27 Posts)
ShouldILTB Sat 06-Jun-15 18:18:00

Name changer here, only as I could be identified in RL with with usual profile.

Been with DP for a decade, living together for 9 years, 2 kids.

Rub along OK although of course life since having kids has been a bit challenging - just the usual stuff - but our relationship has taken a back seat.

There is so much I don't know where to begin to be honest but if more details pop up I promise I am not drip feeding.

I have noticed a complete withdrawal from our family life, so much so that he basically walks around with his earphones in (and music on) most of the time. Unless he is specifically looking after the kids.

He and I are never in the same room. He walks out if I walk in? And occasionally asks me to "stop following him"

He is moody, short tempered with our toddler (but never, ever with our baby) and generally just a misery.

Of course its not always been like this otherwise there would be no kids, but it's got progressively worse since baby arrived last year.

He is self employed but his profession means he is often between projects. When he isn't working he is helpful around the house and helps with kids when asked.

Significant points are that he is a recovering drug user (cannabis - stopped using 3 years ago after being an almost daily user since his teenage years), it's my house we live in but he does have his own property tenants living there at present and he wasn't all that pleased when DC2 was conceived.

I think those are the salient points.

Other than I do love him, I hate to see him so unhappy and I do take some responsibility for the mess we're in.

Is there any way back considering we are barely communicating and he seems to hate his family life so very much?

DosDuchas Sat 06-Jun-15 18:20:45

my only experience of this has ended up with the man being involved in an affair.......

It could be depression though

LadyPenny Sat 06-Jun-15 18:25:02

Could you get a babysitter or wait until the dc are in bed, so you could have a talk. Tell him your worried about your marriage and ask him what he wants.

Life with two young dc is hard, you need to both make time for each other.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 06-Jun-15 18:27:51

What do you get out of this relationship now, what needs of yours are being met here?.

I do not think you love him so much as are in a co-dependent relationship with him. This is not doing you or your children any good at all. His unhappiness is his to deal with, you cannot carry that for him and doing that also as you have done is co-dependency.

If you did not have children now would you and he still be together?.

Is this really what you want to teach your children about relationships, that couples really do behave like this?. Look at what they are seeing from both of you here. The two of you are bad for each other and need now to be apart. Better to be apart and happier than to be together and miserable.

ErniesGhostlyGoldTops Sat 06-Jun-15 18:50:25

He's not helping with the children he is looking after his own children surely?

ErniesGhostlyGoldTops Sat 06-Jun-15 18:52:24

Was he also not partly try 50% responsible for conceiving DC2?

ShouldILTB Sat 06-Jun-15 19:38:48

Yes he was 50/50 responsible for the second baby but that was the result of a broken condom. Sorry that sounds awful, we both adore DC2 but it did take a bit of getting used to for him.

Yes he is looking after his own children but DC2 is ebf, co-sleeps DP is on the sofa and has been for months - sorry should have mentioned that and is very clingy so he isn't able to "do" much for the baby.

If there were no kids I'd have no hesitation in asking him to leave, but I'd still want to explore the possibility of working things out.

No other woman and no relapse with his addiction.

No depression.

Just a complete disinterest in the life we have currently and to be honest I DO understand as it's been tough. DC2 is hard work and even now (6 months +) the baby takes a lot of my time and the toddler is a nightmare.

I genuinely don't have any needs other than child related at the moment. Therein lies the problem in some respects as I didn't even see how bad things had got until very recently as I am too busy with the children.

Intimacy has taken a massive hit. I have no desire or urge to be sexual (we have been but not much) and it is alluded to when he does occasionally express himself. Basically he feels pushed out and sidelined blah, blah.

He does love our kids and he was a positive person to be around until "life" got in the way.

Zebda Sat 06-Jun-15 19:45:37

Hi OP, sounds really difficult for you. My DH was a lot like this when depressed (reluctantly, though, he knew he was disengaged/moody/joyless but couldnt get out of it until he got support) - but you seem convinced drpression is not the issue - any reason why?

Zebda Sat 06-Jun-15 19:47:41


DosDuchas Sat 06-Jun-15 19:50:46

you sound confident there is no other woman ( or man I suppose!)
How do you know this

Orange6358 Sat 06-Jun-15 19:52:34

Sounds like low key depression

Hissy Sat 06-Jun-15 20:09:47

How would you feel about your role in the family sleeping on the sofa for 6m?

goddessofsmallthings Sat 06-Jun-15 20:12:25

He is moody, short tempered with our toddler (but never, ever with our baby) That would be more sufficient for me to boot his moody arse out show him the door.

Assuming your toddler is a ds, he watches the way his df interacts with his baby sister and is aware that df always seems to be happy with her. This causes him to fear that it's his fault that df is never as happy with him as he is with his dsis.

The poor little mite can't verbalise his feelings, but he can internalise them and he'll carry them forward throughout his childhood and into his adult life.

I don't know how long you've been on this site, but surely you've read posts from adult men and women about how emotional neglect by one or more of their dps when they were little more than babes in arms has caused them to suffer low self-esteem, lack of confidence and self-worth, fear that they are unloveable, and other pyschological harms which blighted their childhoods and have negatively impacted on their adult lives and relationships?

Is that what you want for your pfb?

measles64 Sat 06-Jun-15 20:13:17

Pack in the co-sleeping... then see if things improve.

lovepigeon Sat 06-Jun-15 20:13:39

I recognise much of what you say in my own situation - 2 young DC, co sleeping, sometimes disengaged DH with past addiction to cannabis. Our two are 2 years apart and we have found things are getting easier since they got to 3 and 1 as no more toddler tantrums, separation anxiety not so bad and they sometimes play together now. My libido has got a lot better since youngest DC got to 1 year old too - still bf and no periods yet but feel my 'normal' hormones are gradually coming back. I think long term cannabis use can make it harder for them to enjoy life without and my DH finds it harder to switch off and relax without, can be very grumpy and hyper critical of me. Sorry not much advice other than there can be light at the end of the tunnel. Is there anything you could do together like watch a tv show you both enjoy? Could you try initiating sex as sometimes longer you go without less you want it vicious cycle and can help you bond and reconnect.

Mintyy Sat 06-Jun-15 20:17:34

Time for an honest chat with your dp. Ask him what's up? Is he unhappy?

goddessofsmallthings Sat 06-Jun-15 20:20:52

I was writing my response (above) when you posted this the toddler is a nightmare.

I despair when seemingly intelligent and articulate women can't see what's under their nose.

"The toddler" isn't a nightmare, but the self-absorbed manchild who fathered him is.

heyday Sat 06-Jun-15 20:23:25

Having two small children is very hard going at times and can be overwhelming. I still think there is some hope for this relationship. However, its going to take a lot of hard work and commitment from both of you and that could be the real stumbling block. It does sound as if your marriage has been put on the back burner and this is very common once family life takes over. If he wont sit down and discuss things with you then perhaps write him a short letter telling him how you feel and asking him what he feels can be done to improve things between you. He does sound as if he has mild depression and is possibly feeling very second best in your life now which can take a lot of adjusting to. He may be resenting the lack of intimacy too. I really hope you can find a way to communicate and resolve this difficulty and unhappiness in your lives.

comedancing Sat 06-Jun-15 21:20:54

Could he be back using drugs. Makes people so self-centred disinterested and cranky. Might be avoiding you because he feels guilty or doesn't want you to find out

MeganBacon Sun 07-Jun-15 09:00:07

What stands out for me is the past regular cannibis use. In my experience, such people can be permanently disengaged in all aspects of life that require responsibility, energy or dedication after that. This obviously includes stuff like raising children and giving a relationship the attention it needs or even holding down a job (although not this in your dp's case). If it's that, I'd worry he would not be able to change.

Athenaviolet Sun 07-Jun-15 09:07:34

Your relationship is dead.

You even say you are only staying for the DCs. This is almost never the right thing.

You will both be much happier apart.

QuiteLikely5 Sun 07-Jun-15 09:11:25

Have you talked to him about this? Leaving a room when you enter and asking you to stop following him is pretty damn rude.

You say he isn't depressed but he is obviously pretty damn miserable.

I wonder if he has struggled to adapt to the demands of family life?

It's hard at the ages of the children you have and yes the dynamics have changed forever but it's how you adapt together. It's also about realising it's not always going to be this hard and demanding.

ShouldILTB Sun 07-Jun-15 09:27:43

Thanks for all the replies.

I did wonder if he had been smoking again (he still smokes the occasional roll up) but he assures me he isn't. We had massive issues when he stopped smoking cannabis years ago [I asked him to leave, was pregnant, wasn't going to allow my child to be bought up with that etc and he went through all the right channels to tackle his addiction] BUT that is the one thing he is still quite good at communicating about. He goes to meeting etc.. I am pretty confident it's not a relapse.

I am also pretty confident there is no one else.

The toddler has had a tough time adjusting to new baby (as had Dad?)

I do think things are particularly hard at the moment due to children and their ages.

BUT I need help and support, not the cold shoulder.

He is fine with the kids (both the same gender by the way - someone mentioned up thread about that) other than the occasional snapping at the toddler... Toddler is in the not listening phase which I also find frustrating so I understand but when he snaps I pull him up and it's got a lot better.

I struggle with some issues myself - I am an emotional eater - and I am terrified about the damage we are doing to our young kids but I come from a broken family and I never wanted that for my children. I mean no disrespect to anyone who is separated or had separated parents.

I have suggested an evening without the kids next week when we can get someone to watch kids for a few hours and he has agreed so we're going to thrash it all out and I am leaning towards asking him to leave if he cannot offer me a concrete way of making things better - IE counselling.

LuluJakey1 Sun 07-Jun-15 10:51:37

For most men intimacy and feeling loved is important - and for most women. Perhaps he just feels his position in the family and with you is very low down the pecking order and like he doesn't count for much.

My DH is the most secure, loving person but even he has been thrown at times by how demanding our 6 month old DS is- and he was the one who really wanted a baby. We have both worked very hard on the 'us' as well as on being parents. We love DS to bits but babies can just take your life over. I find one all-consuming, never mind two!

HootyMcTooty Sun 07-Jun-15 11:01:02

It's time for a proper talk, don't take any excuses from him. Wait until DC's are in bed then tell him you're going to talk to each other until you are satisfied that you have all the facts. Get to the bottom of what is going on and deal with it. I'm sorry but I could not live like that and I'm shocked that it seems it's taken you a while to figure out that he leaves a room when you enter it. That indicates that you've both been completely disengaged from each other for some time.

I'm sorry to say, but I wouldn't be too confident that there isn't an OW, I hope I'm wrong.

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