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Can't do wrong or right

(233 Posts)
SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 08:45:55

Sorry if this doesn't make sense. There is a lot of history that I don't really want to go into. However yesterday I joined the gym as they had a great offer on, no contract etc. I'd been speaking to my DH about this for a while now, and a few weeks ago said that I would be joining the early part of March. Anyway I got home yesterday and told DH that I had signed up and you'd have thought I'd never run it past him.

On and on he went, first because it was £5 more than what I'd said it should be (it includes swimming for the kids that will more than make up for it), then because I hadn't spoken to him about it - I had...around a week ago at most. Then because with our eldest DD's hobby we are spending £60 a month now on 'leisure activities' as he put it.

The gym is for my health, I am very over weight (about 4 stone) and suffer from anxiety and depression, which although I manage quiet well now, feel this will hep even more. I also suffer from an disordered eating, which have an physical outlet will help me with (sorry for all the detail)

We still have a large amount of our monthly income going into savings, so are in no way struggling. DH feels that every bit of money that is not being spent on a necessity should be being saved for a house. I feel that if we did that we would have no fun or quality of life. It also doesn't help that DH has no interest in hobbies or friends or anything that isn't work and being at home.

I just feel at a loss over this. I've discussed it with him, he agreed to it, and yet when I actually do it, he causes a massive fight over it...and I feel like crap.

Adding to this, I am off work ill this morning, and DH seems to have wanted to continue the fight. He first asked if I felt able to get the kids ready (he never gets them ready), then when I am proceeding to do so, he starts telling me to get the younger one ready, while getting cross at our eldest. This includes raising his voice and pulling her slippers etc. off instead of him asking her twice to do it herself.

He then claims that he would have done it himself, and that he never asked me to get them ready, which to be honest is bullshit. I'm left dealing with two confused crying children, while he has a go at me... I refuse to get dragged in to it in front of the kids, and then he's all nice as pie 10 mins later.

He's out doing the school run now, and tbh I'm dreading him coming home and wish I was well enough to go into work to get out of is way.

I'm just so sick of no matter what I do, he'll take issue with it if it's not what he wants, or done his way.

Marchate Mon 29-Feb-16 08:54:06

He is emotionally and financially abusive - not the nice man you thought he was

I hope you feel better later today and can think more clearly about what is happening

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 09:02:48

Thing is though, he says he's just concerned for the family, that he wants the best for us. He's apparently worried about it being a contract, and wants to check the paperwork, even though I've told him it's not.

I just feel like what ever I say, he tries to find holes and inconsistencies with it... I don't feel like he's on my side, I feel like we're always against each other.

And yet he says that its just me taking things the wrong way. He says he wants what's best for us, that I try and cause issues because of my childhood.

I just don't know which part of my brain is right. One side says I love him, that I'm being to hard on him, he's a good man, the kids love their dad, he's better than mine was. The other side feels trapped, and like he's will manipulate me, and that he's being unreasonable. But he doesn't do anything that justifies me leaving, and what if he is one of the good guys, and life for me and the kids is shit after I tear their world apart and leave...

MoominPie22 Mon 29-Feb-16 09:08:39

God he´s a miserable bugger isn´t he? Would you say you have a good, loving relationship aside from the money issue? Is he naturally not a very fun-loving person? I can´t believe if you´re off sick from work he still expects you to get the kids ready! angry

It sounds like you both aren´t terribly suited if you´ve got such different personalities. He seriously needs to lighten up! Just because he has no life why should you have to shrink yours? I quite agree that you should have some extra-curricular stuff going on and that the gym sounds like a good bargain actually. It´s an investment in your health and if the kids get to benefit too then bonus! smile He should be happy and supportive of the fact that you´re wanting to improve your mental/physical health.

I know some men get quite threatened when their partner starts being all healthy, losing weight, improved confidence etc. I don´t know if this is him or it´s solely a money issue for him and he would´ve twisted his face if you´d spent money on anything. You´re hardly frittering money down the drain are you? confused How very frustrating for you.

All you can really do is tell him how much this will improve your health, the kids will love it etc can only do so much then you´ve just gotta walk away and let him moan to the wall cos you mustn´t allow him to bring your mood down and be a miserable miser who sucks the joy out of others. Hope you feel better soon. Tell him you´re gonna stay out of his way till he puts a smile on his bloody face! flowers

Marchate Mon 29-Feb-16 09:10:03

He is manipulating you. He will continue to manipulate you

If you have come from a controlling family, it's easy to believe that slightly better is good

Checking the paperwork is his way of telling you that you're not as competent as he is

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 09:31:54

He is miserable.He always has to have something to stress about, something to complain over. Even with the kids, he won't play on their level...and if they are being typical kids then they are too noisy, to boisterous, he never did x, y and z etc He can be like a black hole of fun, the mood seems to go down sometimes when he's around.

He's come home in a foul mood. Come upstairs to tell me that my car tyres are 'dangerously low', that he was late to school ( I leave later than he did, and am usually waiting around), however I insisted he leave later to give the kids time to eat breakfast, so I reckon he's just saying that too make a point (yes he was going to send them with no breakfast...), and quizzing me over an oil order...have I done it, we don't have enough to last etc - we do, and if I spent more for an emergency order to keep him happy that way, he'd then complain about the cost.

He does make me feel like he doesn't think I'm as competent as him, or that I make shit choices without him guiding me.

My father was very abusive, and I met my DH a few month after my mother kicked my father out. He swore he would never be like this...he makes me feel like it's all me, that my perceptions are being twisted by my childhood, that I'm reading stuff into our relationship that isn't there as I'm hyper alert from my childhood, and go on the defensive.

hellsbellsmelons Mon 29-Feb-16 09:45:11

Do you actually love him though?
Can you imagine this for the next 10-20 years of your life?
I think you would feel a lot better without this fun-crusher in your life on a daily basis.
But... You have a family and have been together for a while, so you won't just up and leave.
Could you get away one evening a week for 10-12 weeks?
If you can then please contact Womens Aid and enrol to do their Freedom Programme. If you were around abuse when younger and still are now, then this will really help you see things for what they are and then you can make an informed decision.
I think you know that this is no way to live.

Marchate Mon 29-Feb-16 09:52:16

Men like him have to control the most pointless things. He 'lets' you attend to the oil order, then questions your ability to do it correctly

You can be pretty sure your dad was nice to your mum at first too. Once you are married/have children/get engaged/rent a house together/buy a pet... whatever makes it difficult to leave, men like that show their true selves

I'm sorry I don't have anything positive to say x

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 10:02:34

I could get away as I would say I was at the gym. However if it costs money then I'm not sure how I would manage to keep that unnoticed...I would also feel like I was betraying him in way.

I think sometimes I do love him. He said he loved me very quickly into the relationship, and being young I said it back as I thought that's what you do. If he was like this at the start I'd like to think I wouldn't have stayed with him, but then he used to be a lot worse than this and I didn't leave so who know... It was very difficult though as I moved in with him at 16...and so hen things started going bad, it wasn't as easy as just not seeing him any more.

Having kids, just makes it seem impossible to leave him. They would be heart broken, he'd act all heart broken. And what if it is a mistake to.

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 10:04:35

I think I'm starting to question it, as we'll be looking to buy a house in a couple of years (saving every penny for it now as I said, unless he deems it a worthwhile spend). I know that will make it harder to leave, and I'm worried I'll just let myself be carried along, like I have all the other times.

I just wish I could resolve this heart/head confusion.

WhatALoadOfOldBollocks Mon 29-Feb-16 10:15:15

You suffer from anxiety and depression eh? I bet living with him isn't helping!
You were 16 when you moved in with him; how old was he?

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 29-Feb-16 10:21:13

This is all about power and control; he wants absolute over you all. He wants to control everything even down to what sort of house you will buy (it will be his choice mainly and will probably also tell you that you're not going on the mortgage, you will not get a say).

What did you learn about relationships when growing up?. Your parents between them taught you an awful lot of damaging lessons, we after all learn about relationships first and foremost from them.

I think he met you at a very low point in your life and targeted you accordingly. Men like yours need someone with shaky boundaries and low self worth to further bring down to their base level. He may well be a different type of abuser to your dad but he is still abusive all the same.

What do you get out of this relationship now, what needs of yours is he meeting here?.

What are you both teaching your children about relationships here?. Look yourself at what you learnt.

Having children makes it even more imperative that you show them positive and life affirming lessons about relationships; what they are seeing currently is you being put down emotionally and by their dad. You're showing them that currently at least this is all acceptable to you. Its no lesson to be teaching them. They do not have to be even in the same room at you are to see that you are unhappy and I would put money on it that HE is one of the causes (the other being your childhood) of your current depressive state and anxiety. He is acting as a dictator within his own home and is not above bringing the children into this either. Your children are more frightened than in actual awe of the man. His actions are not those of either a loving father or husband.

You have a choice re him; your children do not. Listen to your head rather than your heart here. Do not let yourself just be blithely carried along to your detriment any more.

I would also recommend you look at and enrol on the Freedom Programme run by Womens Aid. A chat with them also would not go amiss either.

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 10:30:12

How much does the freedom programme cost? I'm worried about how to hide paying for it if it does indeed cost.

He was 21 when I moved in with him and his parents, I was 16(and a half).

He did meet me at a very low point in my life, I had just finally gotten free from my father, and cut him out of my life.

Funnily enough, he has just ordered something for himself costing £200...much more than my gym cost, and my daughters hobby...

I know that living like this isn't right, I just find it so hard to think straight about it all, and work out whether he's right, that it's mostly me, or not... he can be wonderful at times.

MoominPie22 Mon 29-Feb-16 10:52:36

I know you earn but do you have full and exclusive access to your own account? Your wages get paid into this account or a joint one?

Is he the sort that has to be shown a reciept for everything you buy, even toiletries or birthday presents? So you would have to run everything past him. Or does he check your online banking and scrutinize all the outgoings?

I think you need to go query him about his big purchase just now. hmm

I just worry he´s keeping you on a very tight reign re your spending/access to money, while he wields all the power over the finances. You should be in control of you own account and if he doesn´t like it you should tell him to go to Hell! He either stops treating you like a halfwit or tell him to fuck off. I´m serious. You need to assert yourself somehow and by standing up to him you´re sending him a message you´re not a dependant and you want equality within this relationship.

If he doesn´t respect that then he´s at fault and he can just bloody well deal with it. He can look after his account and you look after yours. You both have access and equal power over the joint account. There´s no way he should be having full control and responsibility over the finances.

Too often this is seen as the Man´s Dept in a relationship. The man oversees all things financial. But if someone´s abusive and has financial power then bad things can happen.

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 11:09:45

No it's a joint bank account, and he goes through the incomings and outgoings with a fine toothed comb it seems. I don't have to show recites, but if there is an outgoing on the bank that isn't obvious hat it's for, I have to explain it.

The big purchase apparently is necessary, as it's repairs for his laptop. I don't care if he spends that money, just pissed off at the double standards.

He won't do separate bank accounts, as apparently married people don't do that...and why would I want my own, he can see no reason for it.

Keeping to the budget is my responsibility, but making and altering the budget it seems, can only be done with his agreement.

Apparently he can't understand me wanting to spend any of OUR money on just ME, as if he did that he'd feel so guilty, as we're 'trying to save for a house'...

I do assert myself, but then starts with the big arguments, with him making me question myself, he makes my thought so blurry when he starts, convinces me I'm the one whose being unreasonable, convinces me to say sorry and sort it our with him, say he's only being off with me because of my moods, what are we doing together', he'll just leave etc... then I feel guilty and like I'm to blame, so make it up with him so he'll stay.

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 11:11:30

He's just come up and what basically feels like interrogates me on my illness...why they hell does he think he needs to know all the details...isn't me saying I feel like shit enough....but no, he gets his answers and the fucks there is no real care there, just ulterior motives for checking on me.

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 11:12:51

oh also apparently I'll 'want to go downstairs to lie on the couch now' as the dog is bothering him because I'm upstairs...ffs just leave me be

hellsbellsmelons Mon 29-Feb-16 11:23:23

Oh god he sounds awful the more you write - sorry.
Freedom Programme is free to attend.
You can do it online but it's far better in person and on-line I think you need to buy a book at £10 (but I'm not entirely sure)
If you attend it's completely free.

MoominPie22 Mon 29-Feb-16 11:29:39

So he´s off work today then? sad God if you´re ill you need some bloody peace. I hope he´s being attentive and looking after you.....hmm

Are you 100% sure you actually wanna be saddled with buying a house with him? Cos once the house has been bought there´ll only be something else won´t there? Another excuse to control and dominate the finances etc.

Oh and I have my own account and I don´t even earn! I´m a SAHM and my husband puts money in my account so I never have to ask him for cash ( which would be demeaning ) and he takes care of bigger purchases and all bills. We are also trying to buy a house.

I would say it´s totally normal to have your own account. Thank God you´re earning tho and you´re not financially dependant on him for getting money. That´s something at least.

Marchate Mon 29-Feb-16 11:32:16

He doesn't want you to be unwell because he's not in the limelight

Definitely financial abuse, along with all the rest

Making it up with him so that he'll stay is a poor choice, I'm sorry to tell you. You'd manage so much better without him. You'd be able to breathe

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 11:34:13

Yes he's off work today, I don't want to say too much, but he'll be off until next week.

That's good to know about the freedom programme, I'll see if I can email about it (my anxiety is awful on the phone)

No I'm not sure at all that I want to buy a house with him. It's what he wants to the exclusion of all else it seems. But tbh I dread it, as I feel I will be well and truly caged then

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 11:36:14

Jesus, he keeps coming upstairs to tell me what he's doing etc...I just want to rest. If I say that though he'll go into a grump as I'll be in a mood with him, so he just won't bother (his words)

SoFrustratedWithItAll Mon 29-Feb-16 11:37:26

Will it be better to leave though? Everyone always says how much harder it is as a single parents, the kids would have to stop their hobbies, we'd be in a smaller place, they wouldn't have their dad around, things financially would be harder.

pocketsaviour Mon 29-Feb-16 11:37:54

Freedom programme is free to attend. Please do look into this OP.

I would also recommend reading Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft. You can buy this on Kindle but if you're worried about the cost showing up, please send me a private message and I'll help you out.

You and your children deserve so much better than this flowers

pocketsaviour Mon 29-Feb-16 11:39:53


Being from a broken home is better than being in one.

Children flourish in an atmosphere where there is no abuse. You have already posted about how his presence lowers the mood in the house. Being able to have riding lessons (or whatever) is not an adequate trade off for having to tiptoe around a miserable bastard for the other 6.75 days of the week.

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