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Nothing I do is good enough - do I keep trying to explain how I feel to OH?

(11 Posts)
RubySlippers77 Mon 09-May-16 10:36:03

OH and I have been together 3 1/2 years and have twin boys (7 months) through IVF - I know he loves them to bits but not sure how he feels about me.

He has been very stressed at work but I'm so fed up of him moaning at me for not doing things or doing them wrong; his latest strop yesterday involved him completely turning the nursery upside down to 'tidy' it as he doesn't like clutter. I did ask him to look after the boys for an hour or so last weekend so I could do it, but he wouldn't, said he was too tired. He never looks after them for more than half an hour on his own, so has no idea how time consuming it is to keep both of them fed, entertained etc whilst trying to do things round the house too.

He wants me to 'stop spending and buying things' despite the fact that his family are well off and everything I buy for the boys is from ebay/ Facebook, they very rarely get anything brand new. All their clothes are bundles which I box up and use when they get to the relevant size. I haven't bought anything new for myself for a year (and that was maternity trousers!), I'm so desperate to get my hair cut (last done in December!) but can't face the comments I'd get about spending money I don't have. I don't see friends much any more as I can't justify the cost of going for meals with them on my own, and he'll only have the kids at specific times when he can take them to his mum's anyway.

The other evening he was over an hour late home from work, I tried phoning but his phone was switched off. When he got home the boys were already asleep and I explained that I'd been really worried. He told me that I 'should have known' that it was his dead girlfriend's birthday and he was visiting her grave - why he couldn't have told me that earlier in the day I have no idea.

OH is 45, she died when he was 21 in a motorbike accident, which is very tragic but a long time ago; we've discussed this several times as I think that he should still see a bereavement counsellor as it seems to affect him so much. He refuses and says it doesn't, but it feels like because she died she can do no wrong, no-one can ever live up to what she was like. He never voluntarily tells me that he loves me and didn't even seem particularly worried when I had a horrific birth and almost died myself.

Despite having two lovely DC I feel like I will never be good enough, I'll always be second best - in fact third after a previous girlfriend that he was with for 9 years but split up with because she didn't want children. Today in particular I'm really down about it and wonder if I should just give up and move into the nursery with the boys; it doesn't matter what I look like or how tidy the house is, it won't be good enough. I don't want my boys to grow up feeling the same but have no idea how to improve things when he won't acknowledge that there's an issue.

Thank you for reading, I feel better for getting that off my chest!

PoundingTheStreets Mon 09-May-16 10:47:06

As a fellow mother of twins I remember when mine were 7 months old and how life was lived through a veil at that time. My perception wasn't what it is now due to being chronically exhausted all the time. For that reason I'm loathe to advise you about your marriage based on one post.

That caveat aside, your H sounds like a complete and utter twat based on what you've said above. In fact, he sounds abusive in some respects.

When you say his family have money, how does that translate to you as a couple? He has no right to his family's money, nor do you. Are they regularly giving you money? What does that get spent on? Do you pool financial resources at present? Does your H have regularly hair cuts? Does he buy himself clothes regularly? Do you have the same standard of living or are you living a much more impoverished existence than your H? If he's retaining control of the money and not allowing you equal say or access to it, that's financial abuse.

The thing about his dead girlfriend may be legitimate or it may be a tool used to put you in your place, or it may be both. Either way, you have the right to find it unacceptable in your relationship even if you have no right to tell him his feelings are unacceptable (they are his to own). You can only make a decision on whether or not you feel your marriage can survive the involvement of a third, dead, party.

As for not helping around the house or with the DC. Completely unacceptable. Even if you're on ML and he's working full time, once he's home chores should be shared. You should each have the same amount of child-free leisure time. You should be team, which means each pulling their weight and each having equal benefit. Don't forget that he could not work without you providing the childcare just as much as you could not be at home with the DTs without him earning the money. As a single parent who worked full time, I can tell you it cost me more than £1500 per month in child care and that was quite some time ago! Would his wages cover that I wonder?

I would tell your H how you feel. Sometimes we all need a kick up the arse to shift our perspective. If that doesn't change things however, I'd thoroughly recommend reconsidering things.

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 09-May-16 11:01:20

Why are you really still together at all?. Do not stay simply for your children's sakes, they won't say thanks mum but will wonder instead why you put this man before them.

I think he does know how you feel but he does not give a fig about you or his children for that matter.

You cannot improve things when he will not acknowledge there is an issue. Even so he stays and he does that because this arrangement suits him to do so. He enjoys belittling you and the power and control it gives him in doing so.

Re this comment:-

"He wants me to 'stop spending and buying things' despite the fact that his family are well off and everything I buy for the boys is from ebay/ Facebook, they very rarely get anything brand new. All their clothes are bundles which I box up and use when they get to the relevant size. I haven't bought anything new for myself for a year (and that was maternity trousers!), I'm so desperate to get my hair cut (last done in December!) but can't face the comments I'd get about spending money I don't have. I don't see friends much any more as I can't justify the cost of going for meals with them on my own, and he'll only have the kids at specific times when he can take them to his mum's anyway"

Its no life for yourself is it, this is appalling. I presume he has had his hair cut and new clothes to boot since December. I would also think he spends as and when he likes and you cannot and do not have any say in any purchasing decisions he makes. It reads to me like financial abuse as well particularly if in the event you do not have full and ready access to money which he should also be seeing as family money. Men who use financial abuse tactics often employ other ways of abuse as well such as emotional and verbal. They also isolate their victim socially, he's used the children to further isolate you as well.

All you can do going forward is to make a life for yourself and your children without him in it day to day. At least you will be your own person then and not subjected to his abuse (also designed to keep you in line).

3littlefrogs Mon 09-May-16 11:04:24

He sounds dreadful.

RubySlippers77 Mon 09-May-16 11:19:04

Thanks Pounding, what you've said makes a lot of sense. I am really tired most of the time, according to my Fitbit I have an average of 3 hours 20 minutes sleep each night!! That's partly because the boys are still up once or twice each, and partly because OH snores so badly - most nights now I end up sleeping on the nursery floor as I can't sleep near him. I bought him some Snoreeze stuff which he won't use :-(

When I say his family have money, I mean he has always been very comfortably off, and although he works hard and has made his own money that's mainly been possible through his parents giving him a business they built up. I've never had that, my parents don't have much money and I'm still paying off credit card debts that I built up when I split up from a previous partner and was in a low paid job. My debt is currently around £15K, which OH said wasn't an issue but again, holds against me when it suits him ("you shouldn't be buying things, you should be paying off your debts", etc). He paid off his ex's credit card debts - I've never asked him to do that for me and don't expect him to, but all the same it's annoying.

Currently he pays for the home - small mortgage (it's his house which he's lived in for 20 years) + bills, I buy everything for the boys and all the food, which is still £100+ per week including their milk and things. He will often say "we need to stop spending so much" but in a couple of weekends' time he's going away for a long weekend with friends, where I know he will spend a lot. If he left me £100 for the whole weekend that would comfortably cover all my outgoings and probably give me £50 to give back!

I don't think OH means to make me feel so utterly shit, but his attitude is that he provides for us by going to work, therefore I should do everything else - if the house isn't clean, boys fed and entertained, meals made etc then I'm somehow slacking. Today I've felt really drained, haven't even managed to get the washing out of the machine or empty the dishwasher - what's the point when it won't be enough for him? He had a massive screaming go at me just before Christmas for not keeping things nice, not cooking dinner, not losing weight fast enough etc and although he doesn't do that sort of thing often, it's stuck with me. I've now lost 1 1/2 stones (1 to go!) but guess what, I've had no positive comments anyway, so again what was the point?

His dead ex will be forever young and beautiful and of course, he has his rose tinted specs on when he remembers the relationship, plus no break up story as 99% of us have from the person we were with at the age of 21. I can't compete and I'm tired of him saying it's not an issue only for him to think it's ok to bugger off and visit her grave without even thinking to mention it, then have a go at me when I ask where he's been.

AliceInHinterland Mon 09-May-16 11:27:30

Putting aside the bereavement thing entirely, it still sounds pretty miserable for you. The whole point of a relationship is mutual support. There are always times when it feels like the balance isn't quite right, but this sounds like no way to live to me. What do you want to do OP?

pocketsaviour Mon 09-May-16 11:40:23

OP are you married to him? Or "just" co-habiting?

If you are not married then you are in a very vulnerable position.

Hillfarmer Mon 09-May-16 12:00:26

Yes, good question pocketsaviour. Are you married OP?

It does sound pretty awful. And if he snores, he should be the one sleeping on the sofa. Do you at least have a spare bed you could use rather than sleeping on the floor of the dc's room?

You are the one who desperately needs good quality sleep here. He should be helping all he can to make sure you get it. You are looking after the babies, why isn't he looking after you?'

Alfieisnoisy Mon 09-May-16 12:21:22

Bloody hell OP this sounds a miserable existence. Walk away from him and you lose around 12 stones of useless man very rapidly. What an utter abusive cockwomble.

Time for a good hard talk with him about your relationship.

Tell him what needs to change now and any crap from him means you leave with the twins and a heft child maintenance bill.

When I read things like this I am excessively grateful to be a sing,e parent. No WAY would I put up with treatment like that from a smug "I am wealthy you are not" entitled man,

Either that or you book a weekend away just for you and tell him he is baby sitting....and you expect the house spotless to the high standards he expects of you.

Personally I would e out the door with the twins and making a new would be much happier.

LoodleDoodle Mon 09-May-16 14:01:38

OP I'm 90% certain I know you pretty well (sorry sweet lots of identifying details) and if you are who I think you are, I'm leaving work in 40 mins and will be home. Come see me and L, I'd no idea things were so bad.

If it's not you, sorry. 🙄

hellsbellsmelons Mon 09-May-16 14:41:31

He sounds controlling and abusive.
No-one should put up with being shouted at about all of that stuff.
You aren't a child.
I'd have been gone long ago.

Do you have any family you could go to to get some space away from him.
He will only realise what he will lose once it's gone.
So go. Let him cook his own dinner and clean and iron his own clothes.
Do his own shopping and changing of beds etc....
Ensure he has HIS DC one evening a week on his own.
You can drop round to his house and then every other weekend.
See how he gets on then!? (Although I've no doubt his mummy will be there to do everything you are doing)

This is no life for you so stop putting up with it.
Get out and get happy.
Get yourself to CAB and find out what you are entitled to in benefits, housing etc...
Then get onto you vile Ex and sort out child maintenance. If he won't then go to the CSA.
I think you'll find yourself happier, more chilled, more stable and with a lot more money than you have now!

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