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Has anyones marriage slowly wilted? What were the signs?(18 Posts)
Ive name changed for this as Ive a few RL friends on here.
Dh and I have been together a long time and have two small dcs. We have a generally lovely relationship and our life is fairly equal in terms of what we do with kids/work/house etc.
The last month or so ive felt we have had some real niggles with each other which we very very seldom do. Id go so far as to say I feel we are on the cusp of a Rough Patch.
He seems to be acting quite thoughtless where I am involved, not considering my feelings or how what he is doing inpacts on me.
We had a chat a week ago when it had happened a couple of times and I felt like I just didnt matter to him.
This morning ive woken very under the weather - had a very broken nights sleep as my cold developed. I got up with the kids as its his morning to lay in. He had planned a day out with his brother and his kids which I was going to go to too so he got up at 11. No issues there we have equally long lay ins when the chance arises.
He made himself a brew and didnt even think to ask me or make me one. I aksed why he would do that and he insisted he asked me. I didnt hear him - which I told him and he said I had. I asked what my response was - "nothing". Too bloody rright it was nothing I didnt hear you.
I know its only a brew but so close to our last conversation it made me cross.
I never honestly thought I would ever have to worry about our marriage. But this last week or two im just so confused, (1) he seems to be thinking about me less and (2) what is wrong with me to make me so sensitive to the issues. At the end of the day it is just a cup of tea. Its just the other little things.
Sorry fir the ramble. First ever OP in Relationships.
Im all confused.
We have a generally lovely relationship and our life is fairly equal in terms of what we do with kids/work/house etc
It sounds like The Rough Patch is a recent thing.
Try not to apportion blame, who is being arsy with whom. Think in terms of how you can break the negative cycle you are both in, for different or whatever reasons you each have.
Sit and talk, say you want to get things back on track. Ask yourselves and each other what you can do, be honest and open to hearing criticism positively.
We had this. And also came back from it.
One important thing is not to let things spiral. Take the high road, don't go looking for signs of thoughtlessness.
But do, at an appropriate time, ask something like "How are you? What's on your mind? Are you bottling anything up? Have I inadvertently done something that upsets you?" Sit back, listen, take it on board.
Then explain how you feel.
Sometimes a little me time for you both is what is needed. So make sure you make time for yourself, and gently suggest he does too. Most times people get thoughtless, it's because they are drained in themselves a bit. Being drained like that can also exacerbate feelings of being unappreciated.
It could of course be something deeper/more serious. But won't hurt to give those couple of simple things a try.
Thank you for the responses.
Dh doesnt talk. Well, he does, aboyt general stuff, but he doesnt talk about how he feels or issues he has.
I know he is finding work more stressful at the moment and we chat about that. But he doesnt even talk to his colleagues when stuff bothers him. He bottles up.
The "bottling it up" people are hard work, involving the other person having to mind-read, anticipate, guess, read between the lines.
If he's serious about the relationship then he needs to learn to articulate his inner most thought insofar as you aren't left guessing what is going on, esp if he has the appearance of brooding over things.
Can you see if you can do a couple of rounds of couples' counselling or even a short course at evening classes on improving communications. Doing the same course could help you gain the experience together.
Just to say that totally agree that the "bottling up" is at the heart of this.
Our turnaround came when DH finally twigged that bottling it up wasn't working and starting talking a bit about he felt. As soon as he was able to do that, and felt heard, he was in a better place to listen to me when I needed to talk.
Took us a long time to get to that point though, and it takes a lot of times (and wrong turns) to get any kind of ease with the talking. It does get easier quickly though, because once you connect emotionally again the relationship is just so much better that it's obvious.
It frustrates me no end. Sometimes when something is going wrong I sit and talk and have a little cry with him and he just sits abd hugs me. No words. At all.
Well, if it's any comfort, the fact he hugs you is a step in the right direction. It took me a while to get mine to realise that sitting silently and separately whilst someone else cried was not appropriate. This despite him being very, very tactile and the person most into cuddles I have ever met bar myself.
He comes from a very, very buttoned up family- all signs of emotions dismissed and positively discouraged. He just folded when emotions are involved. Just couldn't cope. I realised he just had no experience dealing with them, he was literally at the stage a small child would be.
Seeing his mum with her grandchildren (my nephews/nieces)she is very protective and loving, but any sign of emotion is met with first scare tactics (e.g a toddler fussing about getting a dirty nappy changed will be told "those people over there will come over and you don't want people to smell your dirty nappy and think you are stinky do you?" and immediately followed by her just totally ignoring the child til they calm down, even if that takes a long time, hours even. So I get both way he is loath to show emotion, and why he ignores it when it does happen. If we ever have kids I have no idea how to tackle talking to his mum about not wanting her to treat my baby like that.
I think the only reason we survived was that it was easy to get him to cuddle me when I am upset, because he likes cuddles so much. And then we took it from there- first cuddling, then soothing noises, then words. Along the lines of 80% of communication is body language, 12% is tone of voice, 8% is the words used. He'd heard of that before, through work training on communication, so it was something to build on.
So maybe try building on the fact that he offers physical comfort? E.g. Praise him for hugging you, and say that the icing on the cake would be Soothing noises and the cherry on top talking it through? With mine it was very important to stress he wasn't failing at any stage, just progressing, as his family have a similar 'first frighten then ostracise' stance on failure.
This behaviour usually indicates the presence of an actual or potential OW
Id not considered that for a second. He is always either at work or with the dcs. He doesnt even have a regular hobby which takes him away.
OP, even by the low standards of the relationship section of MN, that's a mighty big supposition. Trust your gut, not some random poster telling you that not making a cup of tea is a classic sign of an affair at work. WTF.
I second counselling before things slide further. It's so incredibly helpful to have someone analyse your communications styles and point out the dynamic between you which is impossible to see on your own.
Im not too sure we can afford couselling. Theres always a little bit too much month left at the end of the wages.
We did two household diy tasks together which we worked really well on, abd weve set ourselves this month to get the odd jobs sorted around the house - im going to try and do as much of it as a twosome so we have to talk
Maybe once christmas and birthdays we have are out the way January may look a bit more fluid with spare cash.
Ok. Buy. some books. John Gottman is very very good.
A divorce is far more costly than counselling btw. ' A stitch in time' and all that...
Do you still have erotic nights together? Do you find each other a turn on?
Ok books I can do!
I certainly dont want a divorce I just feel that things are altering. I also probably need to sort out my own head so I am less bothered by the little things.
Sex wise we are generally tired and run down with work and 2 small children so its only really happening once a fortnight or so. We never have "bad" or "naff" sex - it is always enjoyable and mutually beneficial
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