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Do I follow my head or my heart?

(25 Posts)
ginnedupmummy Wed 21-Feb-07 11:52:46

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catsmother Wed 21-Feb-07 12:05:30

This is going to sound corny but where there's love there's hope. If I felt like you did, I'd seek counselling to see if this thing you keep arguing about can be resolved, or at least accepted, by you both, before you finally throw in the towel.

ginnedupmummy Wed 21-Feb-07 12:16:22

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Serenity3 Wed 21-Feb-07 12:29:55

Relationships take on many forms, there are no hard and fast rules.

You may find that living apart but still being in a committed relationship works well for you both. Being in love doesn't mean you have to share the same house and splitting up doesn't mean you have to stop loving your partner.

You have to do whatever is best to keep your love alive and thriving, if the situation you are in is doing the opposite then try a different approach.

I wish you all the luck in the world, i love a good love story

ginnedupmummy Wed 21-Feb-07 14:23:58

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DonnyLass Wed 21-Feb-07 14:42:52

Don't give up. Keep working.

People change -- so to do relationships -- so it is NORMAL to have to keep working, keep revising.

Friend once said to me ...

there are always about 10 things that 'don't work' in a relationship/bug you about another person ... Always, don't romantacise that you will get on with someone else without 10 things, there will just be 10 different things.

point is can you 'live with' those 10 things ...

cos you will bring your 10 things to the party too ...


Mumpbump Wed 21-Feb-07 14:55:45

GM - dh and I kept arguing and it was mostly over the same thing. I dragged him along on a Relate lifestyle course (one day only) on which I learnt that 66% of arguments (or their subject matter) cannot be resolved. And that is why you often have arguments about the same thing.

We all expect to be able to find agreement if we argue about something, but the doesn't factor in the extent to which some things are out of our control. Knowing that the majority of arguments are incapable of resolution changed my expectations about what arguing would achieve.

Dh was very cynical about the Relate course, but has since admitted that it has helped him to control his anger. It helps you to understand why arguments get out of control, the idea being that you can then alter the way in which you argue so that it becomes more of a discussion. The biggest thing I learnt was to ask dh if he had time to discuss something that was bothering me and, if not, then pencilling in a time to discuss it rather than carrying on regardless. I means he doesn't feel ambushed as he used to.

Dh and I rarely argue nowadays so you can definitely work through the arguing. Whether or not the underlying issue is a deal-breaker is a different question...

ginnedupmummy Wed 21-Feb-07 16:09:48

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Mumpbump Wed 21-Feb-07 16:16:06

It sounds to me like there is emotion on both sides. If he values your relationship, then I would have thought it would be worth trying Relate if only as a last resort. The one thing I would say is that if he says he'll do it "for you", just go along with it. The aim of the game is to get him there; his motives for doing so are irrelevant...

Mumpbump Wed 21-Feb-07 16:18:18

TBH, I wouldn't have time out unless you really want to split. I left dh temporarily once after a really bad argument and realised that it meant that I was always going to be the one to make the first move in order to go back. If I did it again, I would specify that I was going for a fixed period of time, that I would definitely be coming back at the end of that time and then stick to it. It's very easy to stick your head in the sand and avoid sorting out something which is painful.

Serenity3 Thu 22-Feb-07 14:58:18

Hi there

I hope you have manage to talk to your husband and have been able to reach an amicable solution.

You know, sometimes i think we underestimate our children. We stick things out and suffer in a great effort not to hurt our kids or give them the wrong impression.
I'm sure that if your children were to wake up to a happy mummy, a mummy who looked forward to seeing daddy as much as they do, that would be a far nicer view of a realtionship for them than one of a miserable and depressed mummy who dreaded daddy coming home.

I think whatever it takes to save a relationship, even living apart for a while is absolutely fine. At least you are not throwing in the towel just because its not working for you 'right now'.
You wouldn't be teaching your children how to quit, you would be showing them alternative ways to make the realtionship work.
Thats a fantastic role model!

I wish you all the best with it

ginnedupmummy Thu 22-Feb-07 17:07:24

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Mumpbump Thu 22-Feb-07 17:36:30

You might not want to, but have you considered posting details of the problem on here and seeing whether anyone has any advice on how you might get around it? Sometimes, a third party can see solutions which the people involved in a situation can't...

Anyway, you will get lots of support on here, whatever the outcome... I will check to see how things are going tomrrow.

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 22-Feb-07 18:28:03

I remember you from previous writings. I am very sorry to read its all come to a head now.

To my mind relationships that only survive on great highs and terrible lows are not sustainable. Perhaps it is better to be apart and happier rather than be together and be at war with each other (albeit not all the time but the underlying tensions are always there).

You need to primarily consider you and your children. As an adult he is fully responsible for his own actions and made conscious choices. Like it or not you cannot save him from his own demons.

ginnedupmummy Thu 22-Feb-07 19:41:52

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AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 23-Feb-07 07:07:14


I am not going to outright tell you to dump him. Its not what you want to hear certainly and most importantly its not going to help you have peopel write that. What I want you to do is to think very long and hard and hopefully some of what I have written below will continue that process you have already started. I am not in the business of sugar coating things and will not write that he will be okay in the end because he may not be able to or want to give up drink. That's his decision alone and I would also argue that if he was to seek proper help he needs to do so without you in his life whilst doing this.

Does he also have a lot of drinking buddies?. Where does he do his socialising?. If he was to want to give up booze then he will have to have a complete reappraisal of his life. If he does not think he has a problem with drink then no amount of persuasion otherwise to say that he does from anybody will convince him. You saw this happen with his daughter. Having a go at an alcoholic does nothing; they are immune to such responses. They are also very good liars. You won't get much response from him apart from broken promises to change. They need to hit their own rock bottom and this man has not done this yet partly because he has people around him that enable him to continue.

I think you need to get support for your own self by initially talking to Al-anon as they deal with families of problem drinkers.

I cannot help but think you are repeating a learnt pattern here - did for instance either of your parents drink heavily or were alcoholic themselves?. You are not though responsible for him; he made a conscious choice to start drinking but you cannot stop him much as you'd like to. You've probably seen its destructive influence already and know what it does.

His primary relationship is with drink - not you and your children. That is a painful realisation. Everything else, absolutely everything else, comes a distinct second place.

You probably feel very responsible for him; many children of alcoholic parents do carry a lot of responsibility for others.

He may be "great" with the dc but studies have shown children of alcoholic parents are themselves more likely to find partners who are alcoholic and thus the cycle continues.

What;s better - two people apart and happier or two people in a relationship with dramas played out all the time?. This is a harsh question yes but you need to think about this as well. What are you yourself teaching your children here?.

Serenity3 Fri 23-Feb-07 11:14:42

What sound advice Atllia.

My heart goes out to you Ginnedupmummy. I can so relate to being so in love with a man who is 'unavailable'.
I lived my life in a depression, constantly thinking about, worrying and trying to work out how to sort out the relationship.
I realised that i could not do this without the cooperation of my partner so i was fighting a losing battle.
I also realised that while i was living in my depression, my head constantly focused on 'healing' my partner and my realtionship, i too was 'unavailable', to my children. That was the saddest moment but also a wake up call for me. My children deserved 100% of me. My partner is responsible for himself but I am responsible for my children.

I left my partner still loving him, i think i will love him until the day i die. But i love myself and my children too and I have never regretted leaving.

The children and I have a lovely happy, relaxed life now, i feel we have the best of both worlds because we see my partner at his best too.

Initially when i left i felt like i was deserting him but then i realised that by staying I was giving him permission to behave the way he was and treat me how he liked. By tolerating his behaviour i was giving him a green light to continue.

Your husband chooses to drink, if you choose to stay then no one is going to think bad of you for that. But please remember that you do have choices.
You don't have to fall out of love to leave, you just have to love yourself as much as you love him.

Take good care X

Mumpbump Fri 23-Feb-07 13:32:32

GUM - that is very difficult. Someone in my close family is an alcoholic and it is very, very hard. Fortunately, I don't have to make a choice about having a relationship with them because they are family.

I don't really have any comparable experience on a romantic front other than a pothead that I went out with once for a couple of months. He was an incredibly charismatic guy, but had a form of psychosis. I finished it with him because I thought he came close to hitting me when he lost his temper once and I certainly don't regret it now as I have a caring and loving dh.

I can understand now why you think some time apart might help to bring him to his senses. If you are still doing this, I hope it helps. Otherwise, Attila's suggestion to get in touch with a support service for the families of alcoholics sounds like a good alternative to explore...

ginnedupmummy Fri 23-Feb-07 18:26:04

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Serenity3 Sun 25-Feb-07 15:02:58


Im really pleased for you.

It seems as though your husband may have reached his lowest point which, daft as it sounds, is a good plae to be right now as the only way is up!

Im sure its not going to be easy for either of you but you sound like a loving, caring woman who has shown a lot of strength, your husband is very lucky to have your love and support and i hope he comes through for you.

Please keep us informed i love a happy ending!!

Take good care X

Mumpbump Mon 26-Feb-07 13:03:42

Hope he gets the help he needs, GUM, and that it works out for you both.

ginnedupmummy Mon 26-Feb-07 13:34:13

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bandstand Mon 26-Feb-07 13:44:05

much sympathies for you.
i think only you know best in the long run but is good to off load.
in the same boat so will read advice

Mumpbump Mon 26-Feb-07 13:57:52

That's a great start. Bear in mind that there is a chance that he might lapse and that, if he is serious about giving up in the long-term, he might need some extra support if he does. A lot of people give up giving up because they have one lapse, iyswim, but you are talking about changing some fairly ingrained behavioural patterns and dealing with an addiction so it's good to be prepared for the fact that it might not go entirely smoothly...

ginnedupmummy Mon 26-Feb-07 15:04:06

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