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Staying together but living apart? I need your help to make a very difficult decision

(24 Posts)
AntideluvianCat Sun 31-Jan-16 18:50:51

We've only been married about three years, but DH and I have come so close to splitting up several times, and things seem to be coming to a head now. Every few weeks we have a terrible shouty argument, horrible things are said on both sides, and nothing ever changes.

After yet another ding dong last week, I started looking around for a house to rent for me and DD (13), as I felt I needed to get away before losing my sanity. I saw the house yesterday, it's lovely, and I could move in in a matter of weeks. The only possible hitch is that its in the same street as our existing house, which DH would remain in.

So following my house viewing, which i was completely upfront about with DH, we were able to have a much calmer conversation about our respective beefs with each other, and how to move forward.

He feels I'm selfish, won't take his advice about anything (true), am profligate (partly true, but he resents every penny he spends on me, yet buys me expensive and generous gifts, so i'm a bit confused about that one), don't like his daughter (not true, but I have massive issues with the way she is not parented, by both him and his ex), that I'm machiavelian and have an self-serving agenda (absolutely 100% not true - i am a nice thoughtful, decent person - or so i'm told by my friends, family and colleagues).

My gripes with him are his permissive, spoiling parenting, his insistence on winding up my DD (who has some SN which is currently being investigated - possibly ASD) resulting in lots of drama at home, his refusal to listen to my thoughts and feelings and what's important to me, his stance that if I like something (music, film, TV, books) it's probably rubbish and rather beneath him. He also has a very negative and slightly paranoid world view, which is wearing. Incidentally, he doesn't get on with his family, and doesn't really have any friends.

Anyway, despite all of the above (and I listed all that so as not to drip feed), we agree that we love each other, and would like find a way of being together somehow, but without all the vile arguments and stress, and which enables us to get on with parenting our respective children in the way we see fit.

So, could i move into this house up the road, in the hope that living apart enables us both to chill out and enjoy each other's company again?

Has anyone else done this? What are the practicalities and potential disaster areas?

would be really grateful for your words of wisdom...

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Sun 31-Jan-16 18:52:58

Do it, to provide a calm and happy home for your dd. You may stay together or you may not, but at the moment you aren't being fair to your dd at all.

fusspot66 Sun 31-Jan-16 18:55:18

No. You need to move much further away. He rubbishes you, your interests, your music, your opinions, and he's awful to your daughter.

FellOutOfBedTwice Sun 31-Jan-16 19:22:59

I don't doubt that you love him, even that he probably loves you. But love sometimes isn't enough and I'm not sure it is in this case.

inlectorecumbit Sun 31-Jan-16 20:19:43

Too close for comfort, the idea is good, you may get on better living apart and it doesn't sound a healthy environment for your DD but move a wee bit further away.

magoria Sun 31-Jan-16 20:23:56

How can you love and want to be (even apart) with a man who winds up a child with SN especially as that child is your DD?

I would use this as a way to get much further away permanently from this man and look after your DC.

AntideluvianCat Sun 31-Jan-16 22:16:21

Hmm, thought you might all say that sort of thing. Thank you flowers
I will think on.

Isetan Mon 01-Feb-16 09:57:43

His parenting of his biological and step children is crap and he doesn't sound like he likes you very much. Do you really think that these issues will miraculously right themselves by living apart? The accommodation isn't the issue, it's the relationship and it's going to take a lot more than 'chilling' to fix it.

If you're going to make a move (especially with a child with potential ASD), I suggest you move further afield so that you aren't forced to move again if the relationship doesn't survive.

Personally, I don't find crap parenting a particular attractive quality in a mate and if it was being aimed at my child, hell the f*ck no!

summerainbow Mon 01-Feb-16 10:06:22

Move out for kids and marriage .

Branleuse Mon 01-Feb-16 10:12:43

do it. You can then decide how you feel about the relationship long term later when youve had some breathing space, but lots of people dont live with their partner. Lots of people just arent very good with living with people

AntideluvianCat Mon 01-Feb-16 12:26:18

I agree Branleuse! I always used to think that men and women probably shouldn't live together, but somehow stopped taking my own advice somewhere along the way
.

Branleuse Mon 01-Feb-16 12:39:16

I think it can just bring out the worst in people. If you can afford to live seperatly, then I think more people should consider it

AntideluvianCat Mon 01-Feb-16 12:51:28

He and DD actually get on quite well a lot of the time, and she likes chatting to him about school and her friends and so on, but sometimes it tips over into him being deliberately provocative, and her responding in a completely inevitable, predictable fashion. I've asked him to please stop doing this, so many times, but he just can't (or won't). DD say says she likes living with him "as long as he's not being annoying".

As for DSD (14), she won't come here anymore. This was initially because she goes to school in a different town, our car broke and we've not replaced it, and she objected to getting the (15 minutes, very convenient) train, rather than being driven. But apparently she's now said she won't come because of me. That might be true - I've completely detached over the last year or so, because I was fed up of seeing her treated like royalty in comparison with DD, and fed up of being told that whatever I did for her / them, it just wasn't good enough.
He's taking her to a gig tonight. When he bought the tickets, I thought the second one was for me. But he's taking a 14 year old who has never heard of the band (90s Classic!) and will have no interest in it whatsoever.
Because she won't come here anymore, he effectively has to pay to see her - so, things like this, meals out, trips to the theatre.
I can't help but think something needs to change. Radically.

AntideluvianCat Mon 01-Feb-16 12:56:52

Yes we can just about afford it, I think, but I would be claiming a bit of Housing Benefit. I work 25 hours a week for the local authority, and they can't offer me anymore hours (and there's the whole question of ensuring DD has the support she needs. Does anyone know about HB? If I'm still married, on two tenancy agreements (but not living in, or paying for, one of them), but living as a single person, can I claim?
Thanks smile flowers

mum2mum99 Mon 01-Feb-16 13:03:07

Looks like you deserve better. He is winding up your SN dd, what a w*. He hardly has a positive opinion of you it seems. Not sure what you see in him. There are plenty of better partners out there. You would be surprised how much a nice person can make a difference.

Branleuse Mon 01-Feb-16 14:10:48

You do deserve better than how it is at the moment, but theres no shame in trying to find ways that you can make it work. I think youre taking it into your own hands here and not putting up with it. Doesnt mean youre ready to dump him

AntideluvianCat Mon 01-Feb-16 14:39:39

I do feel a bit ashamed, TBH. That it's only been such a short time, my judgement must have been awry. My relationship with DDs dad was over before she was 2. I seem a bit shit at this relationship lark sad

Branleuse Mon 01-Feb-16 15:17:24

youve got nothing to be ashamed of. Relationships are bloody hard, and the majority of people in the world can only get on together at a distance on a superficial level. even my best friends who I love dearly, I couldnt live with. Its not a personal failing to not be very good at living with someone, especially if that person is not good at living with people either.

AntideluvianCat Mon 01-Feb-16 16:01:52

Thanks Branleuse - your words are very helpful and supportive, and are helping me get my head around things. Thanks for taking the time.

donajimena Mon 01-Feb-16 16:10:22

I think you actually have to be officially separated to claim HB.

AntideluvianCat Mon 01-Feb-16 18:50:54

Thanks, what does "officially separated" mean? Doesn't living separately make it official, or would I need to produce some sort of documentation?

donajimena Mon 01-Feb-16 22:20:36

I think you have to have applied for a legal seperation.

NotnowNigel Tue 02-Feb-16 00:55:29

No to legal separation.

But to claim benefits you would need to separate your finances eg you could not claim anything at your previous address as part of your former household, only your new current one.

But, I can't see why you would want to reconsider the relationship and continue you. It sounds awful and very draining. You might find that being apart will make you see him in a a very clear light.

Meanderer Tue 23-Aug-16 02:50:27

sorry/not sorry to revive this thread, am wondering how things are Antideluvian?
Just for solidarity if nothing more - especially what you said about questioning your judgement - I've only been with my boyfriend about 18 months and we are doing the same thing - moving out (after a year living together) basically (paraphrasing) it seems I bring out the worst in him and he needs headspace to tackle our relationship issues. it's a classic case of 'he goes into his cave to deal with how he's feeling while I want to talk about it'.sprinkled with some 'he used to think the sun shone out of all my orifices but now he doesn't seem to want to be near any of them :-/
hope you moved out successfully and that you and DD are doing ok xx

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