Advanced search

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.

Is my marriage over? Very long, sorry in advance..

(80 Posts)
tinfoilhat Sun 05-Jul-15 00:17:04

There is so much that needs to be told, I could go on and on, sorry this will be long, please bear with me...
DH and I have been married 9 yrs, together for 12. He is now 54, 13 yrs older than me. We have 2 DC, 5 and 3.
Basically, the dynamic that worked when we didn't have DC, is a complete fucking nightmare now that we have them.
I have always been the strong partner in the relationship, he was a very laid-back, chilled out, guitar-playing sensitive, arty type, very thoughtful and generous. I was very independent, gutsy and liked being in control. I knew he had not a pot to piss in, had always rented accomodation, he didn't value money because he saw how much more important other things were in life. (How romantic, I thought!) I had just brought my second house. He moved in after we'd been together a year.
Looking back, red flags should have gone up when he started avoiding social situations and family gatherings, only a few months in to our relationship. I just saw it as he was so content with just the two of us.

We were very happy, then during our first pregnancy it all went tits-up.
A few months into the pregnancy he started worrying about his health and a sequence of scans to investigate his concerns were carried out, all clear. He felt bad that this had taken the limelight off of me when it should have been 'my time' but i of course said don't be so silly. He began falling asleep on the sofa and not coming to bed, we hardly ever had sex whilst i was pregnant because he said it didn't seem right, even though I was desperatly horny! I thought he would be the most caring and attentive dad-to-be but he wasn't, would hardly go near the bump and kept 'forgetting' to take pictures of me as I got bigger. The day after i started my maternity leave he got made redundant. He got a reasonable pay off so we thought, let's enjoy the first few months of our baby together and then he'll look for a job. At 8 1/2 months pregnant I had to dash him to A&e as he had what turned out to be Pnemonia. He was bed ridden for two weeks whilst I desperatly tried to do the decorating that had been left to the last minute. (Mr laid-back turned out to be Mr completely incompetent in the house.) Once my due date arrived I had to keep asking him to sleep in our room in case I needed him in the night, not on the sofa. He didn't manage it very often. Baby arrived safely, all very happy. It was intense to say the least us both being home with the baby - we fussed and fretted over him and, i see now, excluded other family members. As my sister has since said 'it was like you both built up this brick wall and no one could get in.' By the time DC1 was a few months old and DH started to look for work, the recession had kicked in and the bottom dropped out of the job market in his field. I went back to work when DC1 was 10months old because of this, when our mutually agreed plan was that i would stay home to bring him up. Just after DC1 was a year old, i found out I was pregnant. (We had done it exactly twice since DC1 was born.) Although we felt very lucky and did want a DC2, the timing because of DH not having a job was awful. Two days after we found out, DH's mum died suddenly, although she had been ill for some time but it wasn't expected. I was fearing greatly for DH's mental health, he was already very low due to the work situation, our relationship was awful and he went on anti-d's. I worked throughout second pregnancy, but took lots of time off because DH frequently couldn't cope, his request, not mine. Eventually I got signed off for two weeks due to DH's stress (not mine!) as he just couldn't deal with things. I felt that, yet again, I couldn't 'enjoy' my pregnancy because his needs had taken over. I felt awful and selfish thinking this way because of all that DH had been through. By now he was avoiding contact with my family, not even coming downstairs to say hello if they came round.
DC2 arrived safely, still no job for DH. Many thoughts that he should have just taken ANY job, but he seemed to talk his way out of why he didn't. DC2 had silent reflux and I found things really tough with the constant crying and feeling guilty that my precious DC1 was so seemingly neglected. When DC2 was a few months old, my very dear friend and work colleague who was like a Mum to me, was diagnosed with lung cancer and died within two weeks. By this time my sisters were virtually non-existent in my life, just doing their duty at birthdays and Christmas. A few months later DH finally picked up a contract for work, things were looking up. Then, when DC2 was 10months old, my Mum died. She had had a major stroke 8 yrs previously and was paralysed and couldn't talk, but she then got a lung disease and deteriorated very quickly within a few weeks. My sisters acted very callously around this time towards me and it became blindingly obvious they didn't give a shit for me any more. Just before my Mum died, I gave my notice in at work.
A few months later DH's contract wasn't renewed and we were back to square one. I hated having him in the house, he sat on the computer in our bedroom looking for work, but came down and distrupted whatever i was trying to do with the kids at the time. For some reason, I felt I had to prove i could manage it all without him and continued to do all the cooking and cleaning (badly!) despite him not being at work.
We had to borrow money from my Dad to pay our mortgage, or we would have lost the house.
Just as we were in utter desperation, DH had his contract taken up again and was made permenant, although on half the wages he had earned before we had DC.
He no longer sees his own two sisters after disagreements with them. He no longer sees my two sisters, refusing to go to family get togethers. He sees this as sticking up for me and how hurt I've been by them, I see it as convenient that he has found an excuse not to see anyone. He will see my Dad and my Aunt, no other family members. He no longer see his friends from where he used to live, just one a couple of times a year. I have made a real effort to make new friends through the DC, i desperately miss socialising and yearn for a night out. DH and I have been out once on our own since we had the DC, to the cinema.
DH has become like a Victor Meldew character, he moans about everything and anything. When he comes in from work it's like a black cloud descends. The only joy he finds in life are the DC, he is a great Dad in that he will play with them and is very creative in this way. He has put on loads of weight and is now classed as obese, I find him repulsive to look at. I have put on about a stone since the DC, but have kept my figure iyswim. I can't remember when we last had sex, could be over a year ago. The thought of him touching me makes me heave. He has turned into a 50's husband - i do all the cleaning, cooking, ironing and looking after DC's, if he makes lunch at the weekend it is with reluctance. I know he works full-time, but the only other thing he does is sort out the broadband or computer if there are any problems. I deal with all the money, bills, car stuff (he doesn't drive), insurances, everything you can think of. We are several thousand pounds in debt because of when he was out of work. We are barely managing on his wage. The house is falling into a complete state around our ears but we can't afford to get someone to do stuff for us and DH just hasn't got the motivation to do any of it,
Weekends are awful. DH is so knackered from work (which he hates) that he doesn't want to do anything, so unless I take the DC out (which I'm always doing throughout the week) they don't get out at the weekend. Occasionally he'll agree to a walk in the forest, but this is invariably cut short because he's lost his patience with the DC. The only way I get time to myself is if I go out of the house, but with no money to spend this is awkward.
I am so fed up with being strong. He says that he doesn't know what he'd do without me, that I've held us all together throughout the problems and he's right, but for once I would like to know that someone is looking out for me, that I can rely on someone, but I can't. Every single fucking time I have needed him to be strong he hasn't, even gets ill when we're about to go on holiday camping so that I end up doing absolutely everything to get ready for it. I cannot remember one time when he's actually stepped up and been a man!
I feel awful for feeling this way about him when he is so obviously suffering from several major life changes so late in life. He says i've always got to be right, that what he thinks doesn't count, but i feel i've lost out on so much (family, socialising) because of the way he is. I've suggested we go to counselling but he has said time and time again that there's no way he's talking to a stranger and we can sort out our problems ourselves, but we never do! We have the same arguements every time! I told him a few years back that we were in trouble and we needed help to sort us out but he wouldn't hear of it, I still thought we could sort it out but now I fear too much has gone unresolved. Im still so fucking angry with him over stuff that happened since our first pregnancy, i just can't let it go!
I feel like life is already over for me, my children are my world and I love every second with them, but i fear for the future.... If DH is like this now, how awful is he going to be in 5 yrs? He's just so negative and horrible about everyone and everything. I don't want to live like a hermit! I want a life!!
But the DC adore him. How can i take that away from them? Plus, we can't even run one household, there's no money for him to move out. I now really resent that everything we have is almost all down to me, how awful of me to think that way.... I have no respect for him, every time I've needed him, he hasn't been up to it.

I'm so sorry, this has all come flooding out, thank you if you've got this far.

antimatter Sun 05-Jul-15 02:16:23

Your DH seems to behave like a child. Maybe he never should have had kids?

I yhink the same of my ex as everything for this type of perdomality is too much hassle.

If I were you I would look for a job. Your younger child will soon be in full-time education.
You can do it!

Not havingvto worry about my ex made my life much easier. More predictable.

He won't change and you will grow more resentful towards him. In long term it may affect your mental and physical health.

WishIwasanastronaut Sun 05-Jul-15 02:28:57

I'm sorry to say I think your relationship is over sad Having recently come out of a failed marriage myself I can relate to several of your points. Please don't worry about the kids - they will be fine and probably happier.
Can you get a job easily and do you have sone equity on the house? Is it 100% in your name? How about downsizing (for just you and the kids - dp will have to sort out his own accommodation)?

wallypops Sun 05-Jul-15 07:04:16

Time to start the long process of divorce. Please don't get sucked back in by promises of change. I'm 44 with a fantastic DP and having a new and unexpected life with our 4DC. Life will be 1000% better within him in it. Just do it. No need to tell him until you are ready.

Joysmum Sun 05-Jul-15 07:40:13

I've suggested we go to counselling but he has said time and time again that there's no way he's talking to a stranger and we can sort out our problems ourselves, but we never do!

I think it's time to lay it on the line.

Tell him you're dreadfully unhappy and that are not prepared to stay in the marriage as it stands.

Tell him that you've both being trying to sort things out yourselves for years and you've no hope that anything will ever change continuing as you have been. Seeing a marriage counsellor to you is your only and last hope and if there is no hope because he won't agree then you want to separate.

You clearly can't continue as you are and if there's no hope of change then you can't continue.

TheOldWiseOne Sun 05-Jul-15 07:45:50

Sorry but he is 54 - he basically sounds like he can't be arsed/is at that stage where it is "all about him" - this is what happens to many of them at that age! he will drag you down and suck the life out of you..

sandgrown Sun 05-Jul-15 07:59:54

Having had a partner like this I really empathise with you. I think it is probably time to call it a day. If the house is in your name only, he should leave .If he will not try and change then you need to think of yourself and your children. You do not want to look back in 10 years with regret. If he is a good dad he will make the effort to see his children. Make sure you get all your affairs in order first. There are lots of threads on here with information to help you. Good Luck x

Athenaviolet Sun 05-Jul-15 08:18:21

So many issues there!

It does sound like the relationship is already over you just haven't gone through the logistics of separation yet.

With so much day to day firefighting it's no wonder you don't have the energy to actually do the deed.

Have you thought about how the assets willbe split/who will live where? As you are married he has rights to your house. Can you sell and private rent until you are sorted with work/childcare.

Tbh getting these things sorted now is easier than once DCs are settled in schools you don't want to move from. Find a school with 8-6 wraparound care in a lication you can commute to a good pool of jobs you can do. Think long term.

Good luck flowers

AreYouThinkingWhatImThinking Sun 05-Jul-15 08:26:31

Wow OP you sound on the brink of a break down! I feel exhausted for you.

I think at 54, if he hasnt sorted himself out by now, your DH is now very much stuck in his ways. Lazy, overweight, refusing to accept help, selfish, inconsiderate.... And he's dragging you and your DC down with him.

You've tried your best, but I think it's time to end this before you end up giving up on life like him. You only live once and life is just all too short to be enduring an existence like this.

You don't have to take the DC away from him, he can still have access. In fact it might give you the chance to start living and socialising again when it's his turn to have the DC. Start building the bridges with your family again. Accept and apologise you became blind by this toxic all-consuming relationship but you see it now, and start working on these rebuilding these relationships. Because trying to rebuild your marriage appears to be rather futile. And it's proved to be nothing but damaging to the rest of your other relationships...

In answer to your thread title... Yes I do think your marriage is over. As depressing as that sounds it could actually be cutting that noose from around your neck and setting you free

QuiteLikely5 Sun 05-Jul-15 08:27:23

Sounds like you have both been through a lot. You coped better though. Then instead of turning to each other, you turned against each other.

I would split up, live in the same house for the time being. You claim as a single mother, then look to returning to work p/t. He would pay maintenance.

tinfoilhat Sun 05-Jul-15 08:48:20

Thank you to all of you for taking the time to read my lengthy moan and for replying.

I think you're all right, the marriage is already over. The thought of disrupting everything for my DC's is awful, my DS in particular absolutely dotes on DH and gets very upset if we stay at my Dad's overnight without DH, which we sometimes do. But then I think of what a poor example he is as a DH and functioning member of society...

Yes, the house is in my name but obviously we are married. Can't see how we can downsize as we are already busting at the seams here and had planned to move once finances were straight. House is ex-local authority, so not worth much compared to 'private' housing.
Added complication is that we home-school the DC (I didn't mention as I didn't want our reasons for this to be an issue, I know it's controversial.) The thought of suddenly having to put them in wraparound care is hideous, completely the opposite to what we wanted for them.
I guess that's why I'm so reluctant/scared to admit it's finally over - the upheaval for the children is going to be immense.

tinfoilhat Sun 05-Jul-15 08:53:10

Sorry Areyouthinkingwhatimthinking, - I cross posted.
You are absolutely right. Despite his feeling that everyone else is in the wrong, I believe he has driven everyone else away. Toxic is very apt...

tinfoilhat Sun 05-Jul-15 08:56:27

Yes Quitelikely5, that's it, I coped better, I realise that we've turned against each other but he thinks the opposite - that we've got through all the crap and we're still together and stronger. (!)

I need to look into the financial side, actually find out what my options are rather than guess and assume the worst.

JCleRoux Sun 05-Jul-15 09:03:48

Didn't want to read and run OP... Sorry you are having an awful time. Could you not get a job maybe and just get your independence back? flowers

Vivacia Sun 05-Jul-15 09:12:11

I think you are scapegoating him for a lot of things and a lot of your own choices.

TheoriginalLEM Sun 05-Jul-15 09:12:43

Does he homeschool or you?

it absolutely does make it difficult for you in that respect. I honestly wouldn't know what to do in your situation.

one suggestion maybe is you getting work as a ta or training as a teacher. This would use skills you have developed and give you some time off in holidays etc.

I have to say and i really don't want to sound judgey but home schooling sounds like a way of this very insecure man keeping his family isolated and its a worry for me that he has isolated you abd now his children. of course your reasons for home schooling might be different but that jumped out at me.

BeyonceRiRiMadonnna Sun 05-Jul-15 09:37:18

OP you need to take responsibility for your own destiny.

1. You've opted to not work, this is clearly not working for you as a family, you need to go back into work and I think going back into work will alleviate some of your social issues as well as your financial issues.

2. You have chosen to homeschool your children, great intentions but you cannot cope on a single income AND homeschool your children.

newstart15 Sun 05-Jul-15 09:43:43

I think you have choices.Go back to work and plan a life separate from him.He seems like a person who needs a very simple life and whilst he loves the children he doesn't have the energy.That may not be his 'fault' just the way that he is.As you say it was all fine until the children arrived as they created extra workload which he doesn't cope with. It doesnt feel as if he's deliberately being useless just someone without the drive, energy or skills that'a needed now to support a family.

I would also reconsider home schooling as if social isolation is a fear for you it could be more of a reality for your children.

Lovingfreedom Sun 05-Jul-15 09:48:29

I agree with PP...send the kids to school and find a job. That will be a positive first step for you after which you can decide about the marriage.

tinfoilhat Sun 05-Jul-15 10:05:17

You're right Newstart, I don't think he's being deliberate, his personality just can't cope with responsibilities and life with children.

I am the one homeschooling and whilst I totally understand your issues with it, please believe that my children are anything but isolated. We have an excellent home ed community where we live and every day my children are with other children, we are extremely busy with various activities, meet ups and workshops. This is one of the reasons I am so exhausted, I am so busy during the week with the children and get very minimal help from DH at the weekend.

In what way am I scapegoating him? Genuinely interested as need to know where I'm going wrong.

tinfoilhat Sun 05-Jul-15 10:08:44

Yes, Beyoncé, you're right. I clearly cannot have the life I had hoped for my children right now.

Vivacia Sun 05-Jul-15 10:11:35

In what way am I scapegoating him? Genuinely interested as need to know where I'm going wrong.

Well, I think that you appear to hold him responsible for things which weren't his fault and that you describe aspects about him in a negative way which are just a particular perspective. You could go through your OP and find things in both categories.

I'm not saying you've made your bed and now need to lie in it, people change and relationships that once worked might not work any more (through no real fault) but I think that it would be healthier to have a more balanced view of him, of you and of the situation.

Lovingfreedom Sun 05-Jul-15 10:13:03

Why did you give up your job when you knew he could only get poorly paid work?

Vivacia Sun 05-Jul-15 10:13:44

E.g. I have always been the strong partner in the relationship, he was a very laid-back, chilled out, guitar-playing sensitive, arty type, very thoughtful and generous.

Well, what's not strong about being relaxed, sensitive, arty, thoughtful and generous? How is that a precursor for the problems that developed later? Many people would view these as characteristics of a strong personality, and attractive ones at that.

tinfoilhat Sun 05-Jul-15 10:18:31

Yes Vivacia, I see what you mean. I know that this is what has happened, traits that I saw in him to begin with were positive at that time but don't work when we have the responsibilities of children.

I know he's not the total bad man in this, which is why I keep thinking it can be resolved. Stupid of me.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now